Thursday, December 20, 2007

Happy Holidays, from the LaPans


Shane, the kids & I are off for our LONG vacation in Rocky Point....No email, no blog reading, a leetle cell service, lots of tequila.... Doesn't it just sound fabulous?
Just wanted to share some Holiday cheer with you all..... Here are a few of our past year Holiday cards... Enjoy!!!
I scanned the cards, and didn't' have time to size them, so they look a little funny! Enjoy....
2002... we were just getting started

2002.... "save the date" for our wedding reception.... OH, how Sara HATED us. Baxter was proud!

Unfortunately, I can't find 2004 - we did a "beach scene" with things from our wedding & reception

2005 - Welcome, Baby Abigail....

2006 - Holiday Greetings from Mexico!!!

Again, I hope you ALL have a FABULOUS Holiday and New Year!!!

Ok... it really is ALMOST my birthday now :-)

As I mentioned before, I'm turning 30. Very soon. And, apparently, it is supposed to be a BIG deal. But, I really don't see it as that. I see it as another day... another number, and I still think I'm 25. So, I decided to reflect some and take note of some of the things I've done, seen and accomplished in the past 10 years, all before the age of 30.... In no particular order, here are a few of them!

  • Met the love of my life and got married him on an island far away... and alone.. well besides the random other vacationers...
  • Learned there is more to life than a savvy career of climbing the corporate ladder, and most importantly, that it was NOT for me
  • I've been lucky enough to find a job that is perfect for me. I am happy and content, and most of all blessed
  • Raised 2 crazy breed puppies from 7 weeks old. They are my babies, my pride and joy
  • First in my family (immediate) to graduate with a bachelors degree
  • Completed 4 Stand Alone Marathons, several half marathons, triathlons, half ironmans....
  • Became an Ironman
  • Learned a lot about what a true friend is, and filled my life with them
  • Because of this, I feel I have become a better friend, a better person
  • Left my hometown of Spokane, WA after college graduation to move to Phoenix. No job. No money. I've never looked back...
  • Donated. I've raised thousands of dollars for several charities. My first marathon was for (UCP) United Cerebral Palsy, my last marathon raised money for the Erin Kimbal Foundation
  • I've overcome injury, and surgery and sickness. I will not be defeated. I am strong
  • I've been stung by a stingray and visited the Red Cross in Mexico
  • I've been rescued by lifeguards in LA, caught in a rip tide
  • Traveled. I have so much more to see, but I've been all over the US, to Europe, Antigua, Belize....
I can't wait to see what the next 10 years send my way!!! :-)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Yes, it gets COLD in AZ

Proof. This is what I wore this morning on a bike ride.


Top half....

1. Long Sport top
2. Zensah Arm Warmers
3. Long Sleeve Zensah Compression Top
4. Sugoi Wind Vest
5. Sugoi Cycling Coat
6. Ear Warmers
7. Fleece Goves

Bottom Half:


1. Tri Shorts
2. Long Tights
3. Cycling Socks
4. Toe Warmers.

I kid you NOT, I was not hot. My core was comfortable, but my toes and face were FREEZING.

It was 36 degrees. Yah, I know... some of you are in the minus whatever... but this is why I live in Arizona.... cause it's the desert. I like it warm. I like it HOT. I like the damn sun.

We only lasted 20miles... with an avg speed of like 15mph. Oh well.. at least we were out there, right?

Friday, December 14, 2007

Week 3, no running

Well, I AM surviving. Who would have thought? If you ask most people that know me, particular S, it will be noted that I am not good at resting. Or sitting still. Or being told that I CAN'T.

This time, I made the decision ON MY OWN, to take 4 weeks off of running. The last time I did any running was Nov 25th at the Seattle Half Marathon. It was painful.... but, I did it for my friend. My # 1 fan :-)

Since then I've done what I could to keep my self pre-occupied. 2 times per week of Daniel torture. 3 times per week swimming, and 3 times per week spinning/cycling.

The first couple weeks I was still in pain. I was icing and rolling on my foam roll 3-4 times per day. I would lie down on the couch with a bag of peas on both knees and one on my hip (taking turns on which side).

Finally, week 3 is here, and my knees feel great. I haven't felt any weird catching, or soreness during any of my workouts, or just walking around... and the early morning pain in particular is gone.

Normal Krista would say, YEAH, it's time to go! But, as much as my husband likes to disagree with me, I'm BEING SMART this time! I don't want to have to take this time off again, so close to IM training. I really want to have some running under my belt before the 20 week training starts on Feb 4th.

My 'plan' is to start my running on my birthday, the 24th. That will have given me 4 weeks completely off of running. What better way to 'start over' then the ocean at your side? My plan is to do 20mins every other day for the first week. If all goes ok, then I will up it to 30mins, but maybe put two days in between.

I am limited to my workouts I can do while in Mexico, and since we are going to be there for 2.5 weeks I'm going to have to get creative. I've asked Daniel to put some leg workouts together for me, that I can do without any equipment. With all the random stuff we do, I'm sure he'll have no problem with this :-)

Other than the leg workouts, I'm going to have to keep myself from turning into an out of shape balloon with long walks on the beach. Which, is really one of my favorite things to do. We are pretty much right in the middle of our community in Rocky Point, so one way is a 4.5 mile loop on the beach, the other is about the same...or we could make it all the way into town, but that would probably be more like 7 miles..

The dogs love hanging out and running around on the beach, so they are pretty good incentive. Plus, it's a great way to sweat/work out some of the 'adult beverages.'

Oh, there is also the kayaking... not sure how much of a workout we'll give ourselves with that, but, it's got to count for something, right?

Back to the spinning subject. I'm really, really enjoying it. I started spinning about 3 or so years ago when I was first injured. It was cold & dark and I didn't have any daylight hours I could ride in, and I don't think we had our trainer yet. I could not run AT ALL. I started taking a 5:30 am spin class twice a week. I tried several instructors, but there was only one that I really liked. He was awesome. He did all the workouts based on HR zones (using a monitor NOT perceived exertion), the music was fantastic, he was always helping with form. He made all the rides like being outside. In the spring when I got back on my bike, it was like I was a new rider. I could keep up with the boys (never mind my HR), and it was effortless...

I finally healed up, and stopped going to spin class..... I had the flexibility of riding at any time during the day now, so I didn't feel like I should be inside.

But, now something drew me back. I started going 3 weeks ago. I've been to 6 classes now and had 3 different instructors. I can't complain about any of them. While they might be a little "loony," they are hard core. They push you to your limits, and never let you slack off. It's the only workout next to running that gets my sweating like a pig, and gives me that 'high' like I really really just did something.

Yesterday in class, I was late so I got stuck in the front row. I'm not sure if it was that, or I was just fired up, but throughout the class the instructor was making me an example. She was showing others in the class my form and how I was right on beat. As much as I hate the attention, I have to admit it was pretty cool. At the end of the class she came up to me and said how great I looked and I was "right on the whole time." Needless to say, that helped my lack of running sadness fade right away.

So, my hope is.... that this spinning will give me another boost of cycling just like it did the first time. More power, better climbing legs, and more racing 'oomph.' We'll see :-)

I know I have a lot more to give this year in CDA on the swim & bike course.... The run, while it may be my favorite of the 3, it's not my strength, and I know that a 5hr marathon is pretty realistic. I have it in me to push way faster on the swim, and take off a bit on the bike....

We will just have to WAIT and see!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Surprise!!!! - an EPIC, LONG post!

Remember this post? Well, I pretty much thought THAT was my birthday. I know it's supposed to be a 'monumental' year, you know the big 30 and all, but I just didn't really care. Or, maybe deep down, I did... but the LaPan's, S, in particular is having quite the year. Big changes, big lifetime changes going on right now, and honestly, I just didn't think it was possible for him to have the time or energy to be planning anything.

Plus, I'm smart. Sometimes too smart for my own good and I figure stuff out. Not much can get past me, but thist time, it SO did.

I think some of the biggest kept secrets were from momo. I mean, really. How is it possible for her to keep a surprise party from me. We talk EVERY day. Not once, not twice, but like 10 times. Phone, Email, IM. We talk about the exact same things all the time, yet somehow never seem to run out of things to say.

Let me digress a bit. Last year a group of us starting some wine tasting parties. They were a hit! Unfortunately, with IM training there were 7 of our group not so much energized for the wine tasting. So, around October I decided it had been a year, and it was time. Many people were asking me about it..... now it was time to just set the date.

With the holidays coming up, dates when everyone was available were limited. So, I narrowed it down to Dec. 8th. Which also happened to be my sisters birthday. However, I wasn't concerned about it, because for the last several years, including her 29th b-day when she CANCELLED her birthday dinner with a temper-tantrum because her NEXT birthday she would be turning 30, she hasn't really been into the whole group celebration.

Momo offered to host the party, which I thought would be great, because a lot of people were interested in coming this time, and her house is big and open and a great entertaining place.

So, on with the planning I went. I created the invite, set the date, times, etc.... Started getting RSVPs right away. The group started to get bigger & bigger, with about 30 people coming. I had to adjust the rules a bit. I was sending update after update. 1st it was, we need appetizers. Only a few had offered to bring them, which was unusual, because we usually have way too much food. 2nd was to ask people to pair up and bring 3 bottles. 2 for tasting & one for reserve. Because, well because who can make 1 bottle last for 30 people to taste? Yah, not so much us!

Momo & I talked several times about the party. Each time she seemed more and more concerned that she didn't know what was going on. She wasn't in control (which if you know her, she LIKES to be in control!). So, I started explaining how everything works... and that I would have her do the instructions of how the tasting works, because frankly, I hate speaking in public. I hate being the center of attention, and I would love nothing more than the spotlight to be on SOMEONE else!

Saturday came and I started my day with a spin class and short swim. I knew all the calories that lied ahead and I was trying to get a jump start. Shane was "working" So the house was pretty quiet. I finished making my chocolate cake that I was bringing to the party, then sat down to snuggle with my dogs and watch a movie.

Shane got home around 3 and we took advantage of the nice afternoon by taking pictures for our infamous Christmas Card (just wait!!!).... then it was pretty much time for me to get in the shower. I told Melisa I would be to her house around 6-6:30 to help setup, as well as be there when people started to show up because there were a few of them that she did not know.

That's where things started to go a little differently than planned. I started to notice that Shane wasn't coming in to get ready. I was almost finished, and he was JUST coming back to get into the shower. It was like 10 to 6. I figured he just had to take a quick shower than shave and he was good to go.

WRONG

The boy takes like a 20mins shower, I swear! Big J calls and says, "I thought you were coming over to help!" I was like "shit... we are.... It's Shane's fault. He's late. " We'll be leaving in 5 minutes!" OR NOT.

I have no idea how HE managed to keep us at the house for another 35minutes, but he did. I was running around frantically, getting all of our stuff together. Our wine, extra glasses, my water (hangover prevention), my cake, the brown bags for the wine party.....

Feeding the dogs, getting them toys, finished ironing Shane's shirt because honestly, does it REALLY TAKE THAT LONG.

I did NOT want the RATH of big J!

So, finally we are on our way. Figured we'd get there about 10 to 7. Late, as usual... but a lot more than my usual 10mins late. I made Shane call Melisa and say it was totally HIS fault! She said, no big deal, everything was under control, ready...

As we got thru the gates into Melisa's neighborhood, and turned the street to her house there were SO MANY cars. First I saw a group of cars on the street next to theirs and I said, "wow, someone ELSE is having a party too."

Then we got to Melisa's house. CARS. EVERYWHERE. SHIT.SHIT We are SO late. How could this be. It's 5 to 7. No one is EVER on time. No one is EVER here before 7. I STILL didn't think anything of it, except get our asses inside so we could help with the introductions.

As we got closer to the house you could hear everyone having a great old time..... and I saw a couple things out of the norm. I first saw what I THOUGHT was a server.... pouring wine into someones glass.... STILL not "getting it" I figured did Melisa & Johny seriously hire help for this wine party? I know sometimes they go over board, but really?

The next thing gave it away...... A big letter sign reading "HAPPY Birthday...." As I walked inside my mouth literally dropped to the floor. EVERYONE was there. And, not just everyone from the Wine Party Evite, but my parents, several other friends.... Friends that either did not respond to the evite, or were not on the list, because they had declined so many of the other wine parties, I figured they just weren't into it.

I was COMPLETELY shocked. Shane and several of my friends (I'm still not sure who all was in on the planning) had completely thrown me off. Hired caterers, waiters, invited my family and all my other friends..... ALL WITHOUT ME KNOWING!

As I mentioned above, I don't do well in the spotlight. I was shaking..... I tried to go around and greet everyone, but like I said.... I was in shock. First things first. I NEED WINE!

Thank goodness for those waiters... they were the best. Never with an empty glass ;-)

After about an hour of mingling, a few snacks and a couple glasses of wine, Melisa & Shane called everyone into the living room.

Shane gave an incredibly sweet speach about me, and everything that has been going on, and thanking me, with this party... AND one other special thing. From him and MOMO.

As soon as he said from him & momo, I knew.... Shane pulled out a large rectangle box from the tree... I looked up at M and said, "do I know what THIS is?" She nodded!

As I was opening up the box, Melisa was telling the story. The story of how we spent the night in Vegas after our marathon. I'm not a gambler, and Melisa was too tired to really be into it. So, Sunday afternoon we walked around the forum shops. Neither of us really "into" the whole shopping thing we had nothing catching our eyes. That is until we walked into the Donald Pliner store.

First thing that caught my eye. On a shelf directly to the left of the entrance. The most BEAUTIFUL red boots I had ever seen. Sort of a western style, but with flare. I high stiletto heel, soft suede leather... they were true art (can you SEE my obsession with RED and with Shoes now?)

I did not/could not buy these boots. They were WAY too much money. But, just like normal, I began obsessing about these shoes. As soon as we were home I was online trying to find them. With NO luck. Anywhere. And, I can find ANYTHING on the web. Finally I broke down & called the Vegas Pliner store. I was informed that these were a special edition made only for the Vegas store.

Of course just my luck. I'm so not finding these on an internet deal. I still couldn't' get them out of my mind. I knew Melisa was going to Vegas the next weekend so I asked her to take a picture of them for me. Just so I could see if I still loved them as much....

No picture came back with momo. But, apparently a box with my new boots did! She had called Shane while she was there and somewhat explained them to him (although I'm pretty sure I already had). They decided to get them for me for my birthday.

Momo, I can NOT.THANK YOU ENOUGH!!!

I heart them. They are beautiful and perfect and ALL.MINE!

So, finally after the boot surprise it was on to the wine tasting. Which went fantastic. More friends showed up to wish me a happy birthday. Everyone seemed to have a fabulous time. Great food, great wine (Shane & I got 2nd place with THIS wine - it is FANTASTIC), great friends (Nat, Jeff and brand new baby Lucy even showed up. She just gave birth on WED!!)great EVERYTHING! It was my happiest birthday ever! Even if I hate surprises!

Only a couple of "oops" the whole night. BY none other than the two wine queens, which I am just going to keep nameless, because WE KNOW WHO WE ARE ;-)

Thank SOMETHING because I woke up Sunday not feeling the best, but no where near as bad off as I could have been. A little under the weather, but not SICK. We went to breakfast, which was a bit rough for me, then went of to the Angelones to get all our stuff.

A couple of mimosas later (my new FAVORITE hangover cure - this stuff is SO going with me to Mexico) Shane & I were on our way home to watch movies, and snuggle with the dogs on the couch ALL DAY LONG!

A special thanks to my husband, my heart is so much happier with you. And, to my hosts the Angelones. I'm so happy and lucky to have you in my life. And momo, the boots, really.... I am i LOVE! :-)

Sunday, December 9, 2007

and then there were THESE.....


This is what you get when you have the bestest husband, bestest friends in the whole world, and turn 30!!!!
More to come tomorrow, but just had to post the picture ;-)

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

It's ALL about the dogs!

I decided this post would NOT be about training. Because, well... I'm just frustrated with it. I hate not being able to run. I officially backed out of the Ragnar Relay, and it all just makes me plain old GRUMPY. But, I'm doing my best. I'm doing everything else, swimming, biking, weights & walks with the dogs on the days Shane does not run them....

So, my dogs always make me happy. And I just love to talk about them. And brag, and SHARE pictures.

I have to first appologize for the crappy images, they were taken with my phone and indoors (with the exception of the "other" dog) so the quality sucks.

We have a tradition in this house that whenever we go away to a race before we hang up our finisher medals, we tell Baxter that we "won" him a medal. He sits very nicely and lets us put the medal around his neck. He proud. SO proud. Like, he won the Gold medal at the Olympics or something. He runs around the house PRANCING with his beautiful new medal... I swear that he knows when we tell him we're going to a race to "win him a medal" he TOTALLY understands what we are talking about....and he even sits and lets us take pictures. He SO poses.


Notice the picture behind him... It's the sign my iron sherpa fans made for me at CDA.


I just can't bare to part with it... even though it doesn't exactly match my office :-)
What I didn't realize was that ABBY too felt like she needed a medal. She was waiting for me to pull one out of my suitcase for HER too. She ran up to Bub and started biting him and the medal.
Notice he is STILL posing. Oh, and see Sara in the background. She thinks they are SOOOO stupid. I tried to put a medal on her. She just put her head down like she was ashamed. She wants to be old and fat, not a young, dumb athlete.
Oh, and my new office, slash old spare bedroom with the new futon, oops I mean GIANT dog bed.... I am so loosing, er, LOST the battle with keeping the dogs off of it. I compromised and put a blanket for them to lay on, so I don't have to constantly have the cover dry cleaned.
This is what they do ALL DAY LONG, until about 4, when they get a second wind and run around the house like mad dogs. On crack. And Tequila. Seriously... you should be here, it's comical.
Well, sometimes they change positions on the "dog bed"
No pictures to go along with this next story, but I just got back from the Vet. 2 months ago when Baxter had the cyst removed from his puppy paw, the vet also removed a couple of little growth, mole type things from his lower eye lid. Well he got a new one, and it was right in the corner of his eye. It got pretty big in the last week, and he scratched it a couple times and made it bleed. SO, back to the vet. Again.... The Dr. is way cool. There are 2 Dr's. Dr. Beres, who is the head doc is my favorite. He's no nonsense, cut to the chase. He took Baxter in the bag, pulled off the mole, skin tag thing and cauterized it. It was done in like 1min. And, he didn't charge me.
I also had him check out a couple of lumps on his belly. I figured they were just fatty deposits. My first Vizsla had them, I figured it was the same thing. He said it was more like a cyst because you could pull it away from the skin.. or something like that. So, I have to bring him & Abby in next week to get their health certs for Mexico(Sara goes, Monday - she sees the fancy $$ Scottsdale Ranch Doc). He's going to check out the eye again, and if it gets bigger, he'll remove it (under anesthesia at a later time) and also the cysts on his belly.
I was also there a couple weeks ago to get Abby's blood work done. She's been back on the Valley Fever medicine for 3 months. The last time we checked her levels she was 1-64 (bad), they have gone down to 1-16, but not as good as they were before (1-4). However, she's made a significant breakthrough in the past several weeks. She is VERY excited to eat, full of energy. And, no getting sick. I'm hoping the levels have dropped even more, but we won't take her back in for a couple months (ugh $100 each time).
Seriously, putting these 2 on the Wellness plans at Banfield was such a good choice. I don't pay a dime for any of the office visits, just the additional services. Today, Baxter would have cost me probably $100 for the visit and removal...
On another DOG topic, I was on my way to spin class yesterday morning (so saved for another post, it's my first time back in like FOREVER) and I saw this guy walking across the street, into my neighbor's yard...
Then he wondered into my front yard... I had to make sure he didn't jump our fence. My dogs would have FREAKED.
Can you believe how big the guy is? And I saw him up CLOSE. He was VERY healthy. Looked like a well taken care of German Shepherd or something. Big and well fed. We live pretty close to the mountains, but in a very developed neighborhood. It's funny, you will just see them walking down the street like its no big deal.....
Anyway - hope you enjoyed. I'm riding my bike tomorrow, then Daniel leg workout, so hopefully I'll have some Non-Doggy...actual training details to share ;-) Or... not!

Monday, December 3, 2007

Seattle Half Marathon

With my IT bands such a mess, I chose to run this race with my friend Carrie to help her. It ended up being a great decision. Had I been healthy, I think I could have done really well. The course was beautiful. Some hills, but they were all short, and some great downhill at the end.... which is NOT a good thing when your IT bands are hurting, but more on that in a bit. Oh, and it was a beautiful SUNNY, yet cool day in Seattle. Much better than last year's snow and rain.

We planned on being to the race start at about 6:30, with the run starting at 7:15. This is quite unusual for me - I like to get there at LEAST an hour before the race. Carrie didn't seem to worried about it, so since I didn't really care we planned a little less time.

Not knowing what the race start would be like, my friend Marcy drove with us down there, so we could park Carrie's car (thinking it would be far from the start), then hop in with her & she'd drive us to the start. Somehow we got SO lucky tho. We ended up in a lot (only $10 for the day) like 100 yards from the start. How does that happen?

We eventually got out of the car at about 6:45 and walked to the start. Used the porta potties, stood there for a bit (FREEZING our ARSES off, I might add), then the gun went off and we were on our way.

Like I said above, the course was really really pretty. We had views of Lake Washington that were spectacular.
Gorgeous neighborhoods

Views of Downtown


Ran by Safeco field


Thru some lush green park, and then back thru downtown.

Some of the terrain was rough. Uneven roads that really messed us up a bit. This would be my only complaint. No, wait - one more. NO Post race food! There was hot chocolate, Milk, yogurt and pretzels. That is it.

For me, it was a great experience. I realized what great fitness I have, as being out there I could have gone forever. I wasn't tired or anything, just hungry and a bit cold. I was in pain with my IT band, but not as bad as I expected.

Poor Carrie. She did SO awesome. She ended up with some IT band issues herself starting at mile 4, but she stuck with it. We walked the downs, and ran the rest. We had to stop and stretch her out a few times. Even when it hurt, she WANTED to run. There were a couple of really steep downhills in the last couple of miles that hurt her so bad, she actually had tears swell up.

I so felt for her. I have been there so many times. It's the weirdest injury. It hurts like hell. It is not something you can run through. Like a sore muscle, or even pulled muscle. It feels like someone is taking a hammer to your knee as hard as they can.

I'm very proud of Carrie. And, best of all... she's already working on her NEXT race so she can reach her goal time!

As for my recovery. I'm on my NO running until our Mexico trip. It has been 1 week. I have 3 more weeks. I'm icing and stretching and strengthening and swimming and will cycle soon.... and walking the dogs. Which I can't figure out if it's more annoying to THEM that we're walking...or me.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Home Sweet Home - Part 1

What a week. It was fun, and exhausting and as always, I am so happy to be home.
Turkey day went great. We had family over to our house for dinner, so I was busy cleaning, packing, baking, and then entertaining until about 9pm when I finally zipped up my suitcase.
The flight to Seattle went great. I actually landed 30mins early. When does that happen? Apparently not too often, but more on that later.
My friend Shelby's finance' picked me up and I was in their apartment hugging my friend by noon. Her mom was in town, so we all walked thru Green Lake over to a bar & grill for lunch and a couple of beers.

Jeez, I forgot what COLD was like. On the walk back I could see my breath and my nose was cold and rosy....

A couple hours later we heard from my other college friend and roomy, Erin. She was in town for Thanksgiving so of course we had to meet up with her as well. Erin & her husband Vince rented a hotel in downtown Seattle so they could meet up with us & not have to worry about driving back to her parents that night. Plus it was also a nice evening out for them without the kids!
We met up in Upper Queen Anne for happy hour drinks and dinner. With Apple Cup (WSU vs UofW), Sonics game & the Macy's star lighting Seattle was going to be a mess!
After a couple of drinks it was just like old times. Laughing and reminiscing and well.. just being immature. Poor Vince was stuck with us for the night..
this photo was taking of shelb, erin & I last year at our mini college reunion
This was erin & shelb last Saturday. See what I mean by some things never change?


Several hours later, after drinks and beers and sushi and some saki, Erin & Vince turned in & Shelby and I met up with her finance and another college buddy Brenda.
I love these trips where I get to see so many of my friends!
It was a late night and I was dead. I'm not sure my head even hit the pillow before I was asleep.
Saturday my friend Marcy was coming into town... She was another college roommate who lives in Camas, Wa now (outside of Vancouver). She drove over to see me, aren't I special? :-) She got into town about 11:30 and we headed downtown to meet Erin & Vince for lunch at Ivars on the waterfront. Oh, I love their clam chowder....
It was great, we had a table of 8 all dressed in our Cougar gear. Of course we were in UofW turf so we were 'booed' several times. But we didn't care, we were about to put them in their place come kick off time!
Marcy & I headed over to the race expo to pick up my packet. We walked around endlessly looking for an ear warmer for me, and finally met up with Carrie & her family. Unsuccessful with the ear warmer we walked up to Nike Town and found a great one, and we were on our way to my uncles house for the night. We made it just in time for the football game so we parked ourselves in his living room and watched until half time. And, I was also surprised by HER
.... my surrogate doggy for the night.
We waited for my uncle Gary to get home, which happened to be half time, so we headed to Renton for some pasta dinner. About an hour later we were finally there. Gary had a WEE bit too much to drink with his buddies and forgot how to get there. Bless Marcy's heart for not kicking him out of the car and running him over! We finally made it to the restaurant where we sat in the bar to watch the game, enjoy a great meal and bottle of wine...
And most importantly watch the COUGS kick the Huskies ASS!! Much to the rest of the bars dismay, we were one happy group.... And uncle Gary bought our dinner thanks to his bet against the Cougs :-)




....The race report is up next!! Stay tuned. Also, I think Erin took more pics, so I'll upload them when she sends them over!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

what do you WEAR when...

It's been 85 degrees at home.... and you are traveling somewhere where the race forecast is:



Believe it or not, I actually do own some cold weather running stuff. Before I lived the fabulous work from home life, I used to get up in the dark, cold winter and run before work when it was sometimes, rare as they were, in the 30's.

I even did a race in Tucson that was the day after a SNOW storm in Arizona. Race start temp was 39degs. Finish 45degs. I started the race in tights, long sport top, long sleeve top, coat, hat, gloves, and ear wrap. I ended in tights & long sport top....

BUT, I was running HARD. My HR was in the 170s-180...

So, what I'm not sure about this Sunday is 1. It's been SO warm here the coolest I have run in is maybe 55degs? 2. The humidity - when it's cold, doesn't that make it COLDER vs the heat/humidity? 3. I plan on sherpa-ing for Carrie, so I'm not "racing" - I don't expect my HR to be super high?

It's been over 7 years since I have lived in that cold... so I'm just not sure! Any suggestions on how 37degs and 70% humidity FEELS?

The best news - they took the rain off the forecast. I so wish I was healthy and could RUN this race with ideal conditions! I have a feeling that helping Carrie out will be just as rewarding though.

I hope everyone has a fabulous Thanksgiving! Thanks to all for your continued support and amazing words throughout this year.

Now, it's off to start my day.... with "bubba day"

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Things I've done before turning 30

As I mentioned before, I'm turning 30. Very soon. And, apparently, it is supposed to be a BIG deal. But, I really don't see it as that. I see it as another day... another number, and I still think I'm 25.


So, I decided to reflect some and take note of some of the things I've done, seen and accomplished in the past 10 years, all before the age of 30.... In no particular order, here are a few of them!

  • Met the love of my life and got married him on an island far away... and alone.. well besides the random other vacationers...


  • Learned there is more to life than a savvy career of climbing the corporate ladder, and most importantly, that it was NOT for me

  • I've been lucky enough to find a job that is perfect for me. I am happy and content, and most of all blessed


  • Raised 2 crazy breed puppies from 7 weeks old. They are my babies, my pride and joy


  • First in my family (immediate) to graduate with a bachelors degree


  • Completed 4 Stand Alone Marathons, several half marathons, triathlons, half ironmans....


  • Became an Ironman


  • Learned a lot about what a true friend is, and filled my life with them


  • Because of this, I feel I have become a better friend, a better person


  • Left my hometown of Spokane, WA after college graduation to move to Phoenix. No job. No money. I've never looked back...


  • Traveled. I have so much more to see, but I've been all over the US, to Europe, Antigua, Belize....


  • Donated. I've raised thousands of dollars for several charities. My first marathon was for (UCP) United Cerebral Palsy, my last marathon raised money for the Erin Kimbal Foundation


  • I've overcome injury, and surgery and sickness. I will not be defeated. I am strong


  • I've been stung by a stingray and visited the Red Cross in Mexico


  • I've been rescued by lifeguards in LA, caught in a rip tide


I can't wait to see what the next 10 years send my way!!! :-)



Monday, November 19, 2007

Is it really almost December?

Is everyone noticing the Christmas decorations all over? Is it really almost December? Is it REALLY almost the end of the year? Where on earth did this year go. I swear, it has been the fastest, craziest, most exciting year yet.....

This weekend S & I spent most of our time moving my stuff into my new office.... It's ALMOST there, just a couple cables to finish moving around, and then attaching my book shelf to the wall.

The kids have decided they think the new futon is the COOLEST dog bed ever. Abby & Baxter are sound asleep next to each other on it. I so need to get some REAL dog beds. I wish they weren't so damn cute. My "GET OFF" "YOU'RE NOT ALLOWED UP THERE" lasted, oh, about 2 minutes.... I have no control in this house.


It's a quick short week for me. Thursday we are having my family over for Thanksgiving, then Friday early morning I am on a plane to Seattle. It's going to be a mini-reunion with some friends. Carrie will be there for the race, and I will also be seeing 3 of my college friends/roommates.

Friday I will be meeting up with a couple of them for dinner/drinks/catching up, then Saturday another friend is driving over from Vancouver to hang out with me. Sunday is the race, and it also happens to be Carrie's birthday (what a way to do up your first big run race, huh?), then Monday morning I am on another flight to Boston for work....

I'm a little worried about my legs for this race. I did manage to get in a 5mile run on Saturday, and I did not have any IT band pain.... until the next day that is. My leg was REALLY hurting.

I've decided that after this race I am going to take 3 weeks off of running. It is going to be the hardest thing for me.... I know as soon as it feels good, I'm going to want to get out there on the road. I just need to keep telling myself it's for the better, and I can't end up like before. Can.Not!

The Daniel trainer workouts are going well. I'm still sore from Thursday, if that tells you anything. Apparently a couple of months off & training for a marathon are not exactly the best way to keep your strength. Oops. But, I'm still going for more torture today, and hopefully Wed am as well.

Shane & I made a pretty cool "Christmas present" purchase yesterday. Since we will be at our Mexico house for SIXTEEN days this year, we REALLY REALLY wanted to get a Kayak. The dolphins are all over this time of year and they come so close to the shore you could almost reach them! So.... We bought and are bringing THIS down there with us?!?








How cool is that?

I'm so excited I can hardly stand it... Hopefully this will help burn some of the um.... adult beverages calories off!! :-)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

jumped the gun a little...

I'm thinking my "road to recovery" post was a little premature.. Unfortunately.

While, my neck is still healing fantastically, my IT band is still well, the same. I've had little to NO pain in my neck and arms. Some Saturday, but I slept funny and we were running around all day long and picking up boxes, etc. I actually felt great again in the am.

Now, my IT band is another story. Saturday I was able to do 45mins with Shane & the dogs. It was great. Not 100%, I could still feel some tugging, but no stopping me pain. I stopped and stretched a couple of times and it was fine.

Later that night my knee started catching a bit more...

I took Sunday off, well from normal exercises, Shane & I were busy building my new office (A.K.A. the spare bedroom) and normal weekend cleaning. I'll share pictures of that when it's actually finished. Which includes another trip to IKEA to exchange the futon cover because I decided it's not going to work out..... Have you all been to IKEA? IT's like going into Toys R US on Black Friday. Times 150..... It's a day trip.

But enough on that.

So, yesterday morning I woke up. I should have known better. My left IT was catching as soon as I got out of bed. I rolled, iced and decided I was running anyway. I just shorter loops close to my house so I didn't get stuck too far out, but if it didn't hurt I could go as far as allowed. I actually had a few moments where I thought... Hey, I might get in an hour today! But, then after about 20 or so mins, I could feel pain. Again, not the stop me in my tracks pain like several weeks ago. But, something is wrong pain..... I had it off and on for the next 15mins.

I was frustrated. I am angry. I'm worried about CDA. I am worried about Ragnar Relay.

I started to throw a temper tantrum. Over IM. To my wonderful friend. It started out something like, "I am NEVER running a STAND ALONE marathon AGAIN!".....

She listened, and responded and tried to come up with solutions (shoes, orthotics, YOGA), of which I shot every single one down....

Cause, I am bitter. I am angry, and most of all I am an expert on this damn injury. I started to feel sorry for myself and think about the "why me" aspects. But then... I finally came to my senses.

I know that everyone has challenges. Every one's are different. I was just comparing my challenge to people who don't have the same one. People who can train and race and do all the things that I want to do with out injury or pain or something...

But deep down, deep down I know that they too have something. Something they are challenged by, and frustrated by, and angered by.

So, I knocked myself out of my pity part (for the most part) and realized how lucky I am. I have my best friend and husband. I have all of my friends, and family and kids.

So, pretty much other than my stupid stupid injured body. I've got it all.

My new 'plan' is to do the half marathon in Seattle WITH my friend Carrie. It is her first race. her first time ever doing this distance. I will walk/run with her. I'll get her water from the aid stations and take pictures and have fun.

And, after that. I am taking 3 weeks off from running. I'm doing everything I can to get my strengthening in twice a week.

I will slowly build my running back up while we are in Mexico in December.

And, today.... today I am riding Mini Me.

Thanks for listening...

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Road to Recovery... I think

I wanted to give an update about my Neck Injury/Progress.... Oh, and the IT band seems to be getting better.

I babied it like crazy last week, and did a lot more walking than running. I walked 10miles, ran 9.5. On Sunday I was able to do 3.5miles by shortening my stride. It was the best run of the 3, and had no pain after the run. I am hoping to do either 3.5 or 4 tomorrow as well.... I just don't want to lock it up again...

On Monday I had my 3rd and final Epidural Injection. My first one was on October 8th, and they are done in a serious of 3 every two weeks.

The idea is that the each injection basically works of the last. The steroids are supposed to have more of an effect each time. Fortunately, I think it's working. Although the 3rd one has not had enough time to really change anything yet, the first two have really seemed to help.

The first injection was the most painful. It took 3 days before I was not in a LOT of pain. I couldn't turn my neck, or bend it forward or backward. It was a consistent throb. My arms were also throbbing... Then about 5 days later, the arm pain subsided, and I also had a couple of neck-pain free days.

Unfortunately, that didn't last... I would say that my neck pain decreased about 20%, and arm pain about 60%

Then after injection 2 the recovery was much better. I was moving around on day 2 much better, still hurting from the injection and had restricted mobility, but nothing like the first.

3 days later I was able to go for an easy bike ride.

Week 4, or 1 week after the second injection I had a lot more progress. I had virtually no arm pain.. just a little bit when my neck got really tight, AND best of all, I was able to do 3 swims that week.

My arm pain was about 90% better, and neck pain about 60%.

So - I'm really hoping that once the steroids have time to settle in and to their work, my arm pain will be 100% better, and neck pain close to that. I'm sure I will always have to work with the tight neck, and possibly have chiropractic treatments, but I really really hope that I don't have a flare up like this again.

I know that my C-spine has some permanent, degenerative issues.... but I'm still hopeful.

So, this has been quite a journey. So far in 4 weeks I have:

Accumulated (so far) about $1000 in medical bills...
*NOT slept....
**When I do sleep, I wake up about every 2 hours to go to the bathroom
***... I think because the steroids make me retain fluids it all day long, then for some cruel reason want me to get it out all at once!
****Broken out in hives
*****Had a new found appreciation for people who are always HOT, because I've been DYING lately.. and I'm normally VERY cold.
******Lost my appetite, with the exception of a week long binge (and I'm talking SERIOUS binge) on crappy Halloween Candy, and a couple random ravenous days...
*******Regained my love of veggies. I can't get enough of them
********Lost ~6lbs - go figure. Eat candy, don't sleep, don't work out much.... Jeez, why didn't I come up with THAT strategy before?
*********Organized my closet, my pantry, my desk....

and........ FOUND THE END OF THE INTERNET (thanks to Momo)

Thanks to all for your support and good wishes, I'm really hoping this is the end of the pain and new beginning to my IM 08 training!

A special thanks to my friend Sara for helping me find a medical solution for all of this, and referring me to Dr. Rubin...

Sunday, November 4, 2007

I thought 30 was the new 20?

So this whole turning 30 thing hasn't really been a big deal to me. But, it seems like EVERYONE else seems to think it should be. That, or they are just plain old being mean.

For instance, the other day I got a nice little letter in the mail from my Health Insurance Provider that basically said,

"Thank you for spending God awful amounts of money with us each year to get the very minimal coverage. As a reward for that we have decided to, once again screw you over. We see that you are reaching a new milestone in your life. You are getting old. You are going to start falling apart, therfore, you will pay for it. You have reaching the OLD lady bracket and as of Jan 1, 2008 you will now be giving us your life savings, because, again... You.Are.Old."

Thank you."

Ok.. so that might not be EXACTLY what the letter said, but it was something like that....

In some ways I don't feel like I'm this age. When I'm asked my age, I swear a lot of times I have to really think about it, because naturally I want to say like 25. I don't know why.

I moved to Arizona when I was 22. I don't feel like I've been here for enough time to already be 30.

I met Shane when I was 23. Have I really known him for that long? It seems like just yesterday he got me drunk and tried to take advantage of me :-)

I remember my MOM wearing a shirt that said 29 and holding. I was 6. And I remember it. Could I really be HER age now?

Hmmm.. Well, like I said. I just don't really think it's THAT big of a deal. Part in the fact that I don't FEEL like I'm old. And, it helps that most the people I hang out with are older than me.

But then again... I do kinda act old.

I stay at home and watch movies on the weekends.
I go to bed at 9pm
I wake up sometimes when it's still dark.
Sleeping past 7am is SO sleeping in
I no longer drink cheap beer, or cheap anything for that matter...

HOWEVER, it seems that my friends are intent on telling me how bad everything gets when you turn 30.

APPARENTLY,
You get adult acne (ugh, hello that happened to me at 28)
Your metabolism slows WAYYYY down (again, happened at 2)
Everything hurts (hello, have you read my blog.... heard my medical history... I'm SO way ahead of THAT one)
It takes soooo much longer to get back into shape (DUH)
You need more sleep (hmmm, not sure about this one)

I'm pretty sure the list goes on. Thing is, I just don't believe it. Or, it's not that I don't believe it, I just feel like all of these things happened already to me. An early bloomer, if you will.

I mean, I feel like I did everything early. I went to college already starting the party burnout, so by the time I was a senior, ugh, hello... I was so close to being DONE. Most of my friends were just getting started... and some are still performing.

My body started changing at 25. I've had more injuries than anyone deserves to have in a lifetime.....

I just refuse to believe things can get worse. Besides. I look at my girlfriends who are all 34+ and they look and act like they are in their 20s. They are mature, beautiful and strong women. They have great skin, and great bodies and great health.

So, I've decided to ignore them.... and everyone else who wants to rain on my parade. Who cares about stupid age. It's just a number, right?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

At Soma

You would think we could actually look at the camera... er... not...


Thanks to Nat for the picture! You can't see, but I was sporting one of the over-priced, but adorable tanks from gypsyrunner. "My running partner has four legs"


Oh, and of course I HAD to have the one that says "I run for wine."....... It's like these people KNOW me or something....


Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Running Scared

It's been a while since I have done this. I did it for 3 or so years, not including 2 years after surgery.

Always wondering how long the leg would last.
How would today go?
Would I be hurting the rest of the day?
Should I be wearing these shoes?
I wonder if I need different insoles?
I shouldn't run right here, it's slanted?
I can't do that race... it has too much downhill...
I'd love to do that race, but I don't know if my leg will hold.
I don't think I'll ever do a marathon again.
Oh... I wish I could just pick up and go run at anytime.
I'll never get back to my 8min/mile race pace, when I can't even run 10 mins without pain.
I wonder if I will EVER even run again...

Well, I finally got rid of all those thoughts. I carried them with me from June 2002, until about April 2007. 5 years those are the thoughts that went thru my head every day. Every time I ran, or even thought about running.

I had some brief moments of thinking I'd never have to worry again. I started training for Ironman. My mileage increased and I had no pain. I started to get a little faster. I started to get stronger, and more confident.

Then we did the infamous Ragnar Relay. After my second leg, where I missed my 10k pr by :30, my foot got a huge blister, and my 3rd leg was one of the most painful runs I've had in years. My left IT band was shot. I had the 'stabbing' pain that I had come to know so well. I slowed to a 10min pace for my 4miles.

I cried. While running.

I had each and every thought above enter my mind again, only this time worse. I thought my 'good leg' would now haunt me with everything I'd already gone through, all over again.
Could I do Ironman. Could I really put my body through 112 miles on a bike, AND THEN run a marathon....

Fortunately, I came back. I rested a week or so, and my IT band was fine. Of course I know what to do now. Ice, foam roll, stretch, DON'T RUN.

Slowly through the IM training I completely built my confidence up. I didn't worry anymore. If I could ride 100+ mile in a week, and run 30+ miles with no problems... I was healed. I am fine.

Then I did it. I became an Ironman. I held back on the bike to save my leg, only to find out my leg was 100%. I never had ANY IT band pain. I REALLY was fine.

So, I did the unthinkable. I signed up for the St. George Marathon. A net DOWNHILL Marathon. The Marathon I was trying to do 3 years ago only do be denied by this injury.

I rested, then trained, then ran and conquered this marathon. I PR'd. I got rid of the ugly thoughts that I was NOT a runner.

Then, a week after the marathon they call came back. I tried to run. I pushed through 5 miles, 2 in pain. I was stubborn. I thought, it can't be....

I tried again a few days later, only this time to be stopped only 3 miles into the run, and walking home...

Another week later... 2.5miles into the run. I was once again, walking home.

I've spent 3 weeks icing at least 3 times per day. Stretching 3-5 times per day. Rolling on my foam roll 3-5 times per day.

I quit riding my road bike. I decided not to do the bike race.

So, today after 4 days of no leg work and all the therapy and babying of my leg, I went for a run. I went to my old stomping grounds and ran on the canal. Soft dirt, flat as a pancake.

I ran out 11 mins, and back 11mins. Then out again 4 mins & back another 4 mins.

I ran scared. I ran scared that I would once again feel the pain. That I was going to be denied again. Denied what I have worked so hard for. Denied what was already once taken away from me.

Each step I wondered when 'it' was going to happen. When the disappointment would set in....

It was some of the longest 30mins of my life. I didn't' get to let my mind wonder, or enjoy my music, or daydream..... All I thought of was the "what if".....

And finally.... I am happy to report that I survived. That my 30min run went amazing. That I stopped with no pain. That I feel great right now. That maybe, just maybe I have finally won.

I know it won't be easy. I will most likely always have to baby this. Never take advantage, never slack on the stretching and rolling and STRENGTHENING.

For some of us, these things just don't come easy. They are a challenge. They are more of a challenge than it should be...

At that, is why we do it.

If you know me, and especially if you knew me during the years that I struggled so hard with this injury, you know that I didn't' just stop and feel sorry for myself. That I didn't quit.

I have to admit, this time.. with this scare.. I wasn't sure I could do that all over again. Be that strong. Survive and conquer that disappointment again....

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Catching Up

Well, first off I just wanted to congratulate all of the athletes that came out to race Soma. Not only did they survive the infamous Tempe Town Lake, but they survived our 90degree temperatures.

It was hot, it was stagnant... it was miserable. And, they all ROCKED it. Although Shane & I didn't get to be quite all over the place sherpa-ing with Momo & Stronger, we did get to cheer pretty much everyone on. Hopefully most of you saw us and heard us out there. We were the two fools with the big dogs in 90degrees for 7 hours.

I tell ya.... if you want to tire out two crazy energetic dogs. Take them to a race. You would think they participated. We got home about 2:30 and I don't think they opened their eyes until Monday. For reals....

Anyway - Congrats again to you all. It was a blast having so many friends out there to cheer for! You all rock. Just one question.... are you gonna do it again???

............................................

After this weekend I came to decision to not race in the Tour de Tucson. I've been pushing myself pretty hard to get the miles down on my road bike, and it's hurting me. I've been struggling with some ITBS in both legs. More so in my left, AKA my GOOD leg, non-surgery leg. I've been icing, and rolling and stretching and resting. Yes, I know what to do. I had 3 years of this pain in the ass injury.

I can only blame this on my road bike fit. Ever since I got, and started riding mini-me, I realized how much my road bike did not fit me. Although it's only a 50cm, it's a cannondale, and at that time even the women's specific ran big. I now ride either a 47" or a 49"... and it fits like a gem. I think the furthest I rode on my road bike was ONE 4 hour ride when I had some issues with my tri-bike. It was miserable. I was sore, slow and not happy. After that, I pretty much just rode it for workouts on the trainer and shorter 1-2hour rides.

Just before the St. George Marathon I increased the mileage to I think a 3hour ride. A couple of days before the marathon I felt a little bit of tightness in my left IT, but it went away with a little stretching. Then, after the race I felt it a bit more. Again, no big deal.

After I got back from Utah and recovered a little bit, I did a couple of big rides, including my last ride of 70miles. I played with the saddle a bit, changed it out.. then had to adjust the height and position. First I felt too stretched out... so I lowered the saddle. Then, I had no power because it was too low.... I thought I had it just about right for my last long ride, but it may have been too late...

I've tried running 3-4times now. I had one good 5miler, with a little pain. Then 2 attempts at 4-6miles where I ended up walking home after about 3 miles due to the left IT pain.

I was running 25-35miles per week for the marathon, including a lot of downhill with NO pain. As soon as I've increased my cycling mileage, the problems started....

So... I've reached the decision it's just not worth getting that 80miler in this weekend and doing the race. I missed out on 3 years of running because of this injury, and I just can't do it again. I can't.

So, I'm still stretching, icing, rolling...... I feel pretty good today. No more hip soreness. My left IT band is a little tight, but much better. Without a bike ride in there, I'm hoping to get a couple of runs in this week... One tomorrow or Thursday, and one Saturday or Sunday. The first one I will just try 3 miles.... then see how I feel later that day..

I am going to Seattle on the 23rd to support my friend in her first race, the Seattle half marathon. I am registered as well.... I just hope I can get this injury cleared up first. It certainly won't be a PR race, but I'd like to run it none the less....

.......................................

One last update is on my neck. I had my second epidural injection last Wednesday. It went MUCH better. By Friday I had the same relief that I did the last time... on Friday, only that injection was on Monday. I still have had no arm pain. Still some tightness on my right side, but worlds better than before.

I swam yesterday. And, unfortunately I wore my watch. I have lost ~6 seconds per lap. I supposed that isn't that bad considering no swimming since June, but still a little frustrating. Either way, I'm happy to be in the pool, again...with no pain....

My 3rd and final injection is next Monday. After that I will have a post op appointment with the Dr and go from there. Most likely some PT (the story of my life), but hopefully this will keep the inflammation at bay for a while.... get me thru CDA training...

And most of all... I can't wait to get back to some sort of normalcy. You know, my constant being COLD vs hot. Sleep. Sleep would be nice. Not feeling like I could run a marathon at any moment of the the day (injury aside). Stop being a complete and utter Crack.Head. Oh, I can't wait!!!!

Until next time.....

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Redeemed

Well folks... it worked. I'm living proof that shoe therapy worked.

Yesterday, I went out and redeemed myself. I went out Tuesday and made up for my wimping out on Sunday. I rode this course. 69miles 4:30mins. The pace is certainly not impressive, but I did it. It's the furthest I have ridden since IM. It gave me a little more confidence for this.

Most importantly it made me feel better about backing out after only 40miles on Sunday. Well, that and I just had my second epidural injection in my spine this am, so I know I won't be able to work out for a few days, including no riding this weekend...

You know, I'm not even sure why I'm doing this race. It's not like I enjoy sitting on my road bike for hours on end. I guess it's just one of those things I would like to say that I did. I'm pretty sure you won't see my becoming addicted to it like IM, or running...

I certainly won't be as prepared as I am for other races. I've really only done 2 long rides. One ~60miler & one ~70 miler. I hope to get one more long ride in next weekend, hopefully 80-85miles.

I am not very impressive on my road bike. It doesn't fit me all that well (Shane & I REALLY didn't know what we were doing when we bought these bikes). My HR is on average 10bpm higher than when I'm on mini me. My legs get weird soreness, pain.. and my saddle sores.. well that is a whole other story.

But, in 4 weeks I will go down to Tucson. I will try to find some big dude to draft off... And maybe, just maybe I will surprise myself.

And, hopefully after all of this effort on my road bike. Which, btw, is is like 10lbs heavier than my tir bike. Hopefully after all of this, I will get on mini-me and see that all that effort was worth it. That my legs are stronger, and like before, riding her will be almost effortless.

She sits hanging on the wall in my office every day, longing for me to use her again... And soon.. soon I will. And she is not going to know what hit her!

I can't wait!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Shoe Therapy

It REALLY does work.
So, to make myself feel better after my horrible ride yesterday... I bought me some of THESE




Last weekend S & I went on a shopping spree. FOR HIM. Yes you heard it right... he got 2 new pairs of shoes, like 10 new shirts & two new jackets...


Macy's was having a really good sale. And, while we both LOATH cloths shopping (shoe shopping is an entirely different story), he was in dire need. So we stocked him up with some new duds, and I of course felt compelled to buy me some new shoes... after all, I did spend like 2 hours in the mends department with him.


Including the men's shoe department. Which, by the way is so not the same experience as the ladies shoe department. It, in fact was not fun at all. Painful in fact. So much that as soon as we picked his shoes, we ran out of there before the sales guy could get the credit. Not because we are mean, but because he was THAT BAD


But, anyway, back to the story of how I scored me the above beautiful shoes.


I found them right away. Right away meaning before Shane even got to the mall to meet me, and again, after his 2 hour escapade in the men's department. Of course when I finally asked to try them on they only had 2 sizes. A 6 and a 10. I really didn't see it possible to put my 7.5 foot into that...


So, while I didn't end up with the polka dot shoes.. I did get a cute little gray pair of gray patent leather mary jane heels. Which, I must say are not only adorable with jean, but also hella comfy! Cute & Comfy and a steal at 60% off.


Again.. back to the above shoes. I couldn't stop thinking about them. Some people obsess over cars, or desserts (ok I do that sometimes too)... I obsess over shoes, if I find a pair that I LOVE. And especially if I find a pair I love and I can't have.


So, I searched the internet. I found them... only they were full price. No sale.. and not too cheap. Well, I did find them for 45% off, but not in my size. Of.Course.


Then, magically... when I got home from the HORRIFIC bike ride yesterday. That same website that had them on sale, not in my size.


They had ONE 7.5. Perfect. Ordered. in less that 5 mins.


So yes, now I am obsessively checking the shipping status. So I can know exactly when the stork, I mean UPS man will bring them.


What horrible, worse bike ride of my life?


Shoe Therapy. It works. Try it. Live it. You won't be sorry....






Sunday, October 21, 2007

I hate my bike


Ok, that's pretty dramatic, but today.. I hated my bike, I hated my legs, my hips, my knees. And most of all I HATE WIND!


I had planned out a great route that had a group of 7 of us meeting at various places and times with those of us training for Tour de Tucson getting in about 65-70miles. A much needed training ride for me. But, lets just say things didn't go as planned... for some of us.


As I was checking weather.com yesterday I saw that evil "windy" sign starting at about 12:00. Prior to that the wind showed like 15-18mph. I decided to keep this to myself so no-one tried to bail on the ride. Particularly a certain someone who decided to make this her first ride back since CDA.


I knew it was going to be a struggle when I was woken up (not that I'm sleeping much lately anyway) sometime in the middle of the night with the wind smacking our sunshade against the sliding glass door in our bedroom. I have NO idea how Shane slept through all of this. Must.Be.Nice.


I actually started to think, maybe it was a good thing. Maybe the wind storm had come early & would be gone by the time we started riding.


NOT-SO-MUCH


As I started to walk out the door I could see that the trees were being blown south, so the wind was coming from up North. Too bad 50% of the ride had us first CLIMBING up north. I yelled back inside that he should give us an extra 10mins before meeting us (he was meeting point 2 for a shorter route).


The first 10miles was pretty good. Of course I was heading South. I felt good. My legs felt good. I was rested. My neck was hurting a little bit, but all in all I was hoping for a good day. Until we turned NORTH. We were going about 13mph. Finally we got to turn East. We were going like 14mph. We usually go 20+ on this road.


This is going to be a LONG day.


We finally got to Shane & Momo about 10mins late. On top of the extra 10mins I gave us anyway.


I have to admit I was totally impressed she came out. She showed up for her first ride back. In this CRAPPY weather. I don't know that I would have shown. Especially knowing now how bad it was.


As we headed further up North, my body just started to give up. I was struggling. I went from pulling the group to the back of the line. My hips were throbbing... I had nuthin. I got a bad attitude. I think I had made a bad decision the night before to lower my saddle. I recently put a new saddle on and when my IT bands started hurting (last week) I was hoping for an easy excuse and blamed it on the saddle being high. I think all moving the saddle position did was take away some of my power & make me kind of scrunched up. Bad move. The saddle is so going back up, and I am SOOO going back to evil.trainer.Daniel.


I was wishing someone else would say they didn't want to do the hard part I had mapped out. I wanted someone ELSE to be the one to quit. To turnaround early. Unfortunately THAT didn't happen... Even AFTER I suggested it. However after a little break heading further East, followed by the last turn before the big hill I had planned, we were going 9MPH heading North. And this was considered the FLAT part of this portion...


It didn't take long for 4/8 of us to agree to call it a day. To bag the challenging part of the ride and take the easy way out, heading DOWNHILL with a tail wind....


Guess which 4 bailed? The 4 CDA IM finishers. 2 of which were 2 time IM finishers


Guess who rallied up the monster hill? The guy who did a 70mile Bike race last week, our friend Matt. AND, our good friends Stacey & Dave who have only been riding since January.


I just couldn't do it this time. I couldn't pull the IM card. Or, maybe in a sick twisted way we did pull the IM card. Maybe this time instead of pushing ourselves, we used it in the opposite way by letting ourselves off the hook....


Usually I would be mad at myself, or pissed off about quiting. Not this time. I actually think it was the best decision for me. I was hurting. Not just in an out of shape way (cause I just ran a marathon for Pete's sake, I can't be out of shape!). My neck was throbbing.. my legs, everything. I actually listened to my body.


Maybe I am getting smarter? Or maybe it was just an off day...


Either way, please stop by & give our newbie friends props for their achievement today. If they survived today's wind (25mph, gusting up to 35mph, and HARD hills) & ~70mile ride, they are superstars!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

What a ham



Because the LaPan house just wouldn't be the same if we were all healthy at the same. Cause, well... that's just not how things work around here.

So, Baxter decided to join me on the "broken" list.

Actually... it's all still from that stupid cyst he had on his paw. He had surgery to have it removed the same day I had my epidural injections, last Monday.

He was really good with it at first. I think he was still drugged up though. Then, of course he just couldn't leave IT alone. He had to lick it. Constantly. And pull a couple of the stitches out. And STILL not leave it alone. Even when we drugged him...

So here he is, on his 3rd re-wrap from the vet (5th if you count the 2 that Shane & I tried to do), with a special little note to him on it.



And they told me he was an absolute ANGEL, and that he just sits there and lets them bandage him up. Which is SO not what happens in this house.... when he acts like we are murdering him when we tough his puppy paw.

But, anyway... he's going to be fine. I have to take him back in 2 days, for the 4th time, assuming he doesn't get this bandage off as well... He'll get it cleaned again and the stitches that held taken out.
I just hope it's fast. Like really fast. Because do you know what life is like with an unexercised Vizsla... and Weimaraner?

Best decision I ever made. Wellness Plan. All office visits included.....




Monday, October 15, 2007

Could it be true?

So I actually put a swimsuit on... drove to the gym.... put my swimcap & goggles on... got IN the pool... and swam a few laps!

I have not done this for over 3 months.

Let me digress.....

Since my epidural injections on Monday, I've had an interesting week. As I mentioned in my last post, I hibernated for 5 days. Friday, I finally decided enough was enough. I went out for a 30min easy run.

Err... TRIED to go out for a 30min easy run. I started, nice and easy. HR 140. Legs weightless... It was going oh, so well. Then Snap. It happened. My legs turned to ichy firey red hivey mess. It started about 6mins into it. I kinda just thought maybe they're itchy cause I need to shave. (this is what happens when you are hibernating, no need to shave).... so, I suffered a few more mins.

About 10mins out I could not take it any longer. I found some shade, stopped, scratched the hell out of my legs... and walked and pouted that long mile back home.

By the time I got home i was fine. My legs were still red, but not full of hives. WTF? All I could come up with was it had to be the steroids they injected into my spine!

Of course it did not end there. I also stopped sleeping. After 3 glorious nights of 8-10 hours of sleep Mon-Wed, I think I have slept all of like 5 hours since. Well, except Saturday night when I drugged myself with the wonder drug Ambien.

I'm wide awake. I'm hot as a menopausal woman in August (hello, I'm STILL, even if for a very short time, in my 20s!). My resting HR feels like it is like 120bpm. And my 70 dog blankets are NOT helping this matter.

Anyhoo... I'm hoping all of this subsides... somehow... SOON!

So, back to my weekend. After a disappointing not so much of a run on Friday, I did not attempt exercise on Saturday, but did manage a 2hour bike ride with Shane, Stacey & Dave. We weren't breaking any records, and my HR was about 20bpms higher than it should have been. BUT, I did it, and my legs were not on fire. Feeewww. Mission Accomplished.

So today, I decided to attempt the swim. My arms have had no pain post injections. I've still had some off/on soreness, numbness & tingling of my neck & shoulder on my right side. Friday it hurt like hell. Saturday, completely pain free.

I don't know how far I swam. I didn't bring a watch. I didn't count laps. I just went VERY slowly, trying not to irritate anything. It was effortless. I had no pain. Afterwards I noticed the same right side stiffness was back, but it's been about 4 hours & it feels ok now.

So, it looks like the steroids, as crazy as they might be making me, are working. I'm waiting for a call from the Dr. to schedule my next set that will happen next week. I'm not looking forward to the side effects, but I am really looking forward to the results....

I'm finally starting to see the light at the end of THIS tunnel..... I just hope it continues on this path!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Hibernating

I have not left the house since Monday morning. I know, crazy. It's not that I haven't been doing anything, I've actually been working quite a bit, with momo & the clan out being all "LA" and such (see her future posts for updates). Thing is, I seriously haven't left my house. I haven't driven my car, or run to the store, or run ANYWHERE as a matter of fact. Or biked, or swam..... I've just, well... rested.

I think it was time for a Krista burnout. As you read here in my blog, I'm not good at doing nuthing! I always need to be on the go.... and I don't like to take "time off." I didn't over train for this marathon, I rested when I needed to, and took time off when my body called for it.

I think it was a combination of playing in Mexico the week before the race, combined with a severe lack of sleep the entire week leading up to St. George that put me in my current state. Recovering from the marathon, recovering from the epidural injection, and catching momo's cold....

I did sleep the night before the race, but it was an Ambien induced sleep... I was so worried about being too tired, I actually drugged myself in St. George! And, apparently it worked. Thing is though - after waking up at 2:30am (AZ & Vegas time) to get to the bus loading and race start on time... then staying awake in Vegas until about 12:15 - almost 24hours of being awake (and early for VEGAS!) I was D.O.N.E.

Top it off with a morning Mimosa, split bottle of afternoon wine... and not getting home until 11pm on Sunday night, I was in complete meltdown stage.

I was up by 5:45 Monday morning to drop Baxter off at the vet for her surgeries (HE IS A-OK, Cyst was benign & he has pretty white sparkling teeth now!!), and then on my way to the Dr's office for my 1st of 3 Epidural injections into my C-Spine.

I'm sure I was quite a sight. Still dehydrated from the race, and sore as all get out. They started me with a saline IV (aghh, if I could only have that after EVERY race), then brought me into the procedure room about 20mins later. I was shaking, I was so cold and uncomfortable, I couldn't stop. They also had to give me a step stool to get up on the table becaue my legs were so sore! They do the injections under an X-Ray machine so they can place the epidurals into the perfect spot in the spine.

Once on the table they gave me a nice little "cocktail,", if you will. A mix of Morphine & some sort of sedative. Instantly I felt relaxed and the shaking stopped. I could still feel the injection, or the passing of the cortisone into my system, but just a slight pressure and no pain. SO worth the IV. Which, I was a little gun shy when several other patients weren't taking them....

After the procedure was finished, I had to "recover" for about 30mins. The PA was pretty surprised when she saw I had gone through the entire IV bag. I guess my body needed the fluids :-)

Shane dropped me off at home, where I have not left since! I've at least showered each day, and changed my cloths (er... pajamas).

The first 2 days were rather uncomfortable. Similar to other cortisone injections I've had. Once the numbing medication wears off, my body doesn't react as nicely as it's supposed to. They only way I can describe it is a constant throb, or pressure where the medicine is sitting. With the injections in my hip (bursitis), it felt like I had a brick on the side of my butt. Heavy, hard an uncomfortable. With the knee, the medicine moved down all the way to my calf and THROBBED. That was probably the worst.

With my C-spine, it was just the pressure. From my neck straight down my spine to about mid back The first day I didn't' have much mobility at all, couldn't turn my head from side to side. Each day it got a little better, with the last of the stiffness when I tried to put my chin to my chest. OUCH! Today, I'm happy to report I have FULL mobility, and no stiffness.

As for the results... They say it can take up to 10days for the medicine to work at it's peak. My neck is not in pain, and my arms aren't hurting either. I wouldn't' say I'm "healed," but I do think it has done something. I think after the next round it will have a much bigger impact. Let's hope anyway...

So, here I am 5 days later... still inside my house. In my pajamas. My cold is on it's way out...My neck feels "better," and I'm for sure rested and recovered from the marathon.

I thought about going for a nice 30min run. Or even trying to swim. Still, I can't seem to put the thoughts to actions. It's still early, 7:45... and AZ has finally cooled down so the run isn't totally out the door. As for the swim, I'm a little worried about it possibly hurting and being disappointed so I may wait until the next round of injections. You know, fall off the horse... scared to get back on. It's been 3 months since I have been in the pool.....

So, long story short.. this is where I have been...and what I have been up to. Hopefully, next week I'll be full of action packed posting :-)

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Special offer on Zensah Products!

A few weeks back I was contacted by the President of Endurance Market for Zensah Performance Apparel Company, Lia. She came across my blog and wanted to know if I would be interested in trying out some of their performance apparel.

Of course I do! Cool new stuff, samples, heck yah! So, she sent me a couple of products to try and I'm here to share with you what I thought, as well as give you all an opportunity to try their products at a great discount! The first product that I tried was the Women's Arm Sleeve. The other product they sent me was the Women's Compression Shorts. While I did not actually exercise in these shorts, I only tried them on, I found them to be completely comfortable. They were, well, just simply not a style I wear. The length was too long for my body type, and I prefer a more loose fitting body. However, If you like wearing fitted shorts, these are amazing. They feel like you are wearing nothing. Light, soft & non-restricting. I am thinking about purchasing the tights for the winter running!

They have several other products that I'm interested in trying as well. Some compression tops that would be great base layers for cool cycling mornings, as well as top layers for running.

Anyhoo, here's my official review on the arm sleeves, as well as a GREAT offer for anyone interested in trying out these products:

This offer will only be good for ONE WEEK, so if you are interested, get your purchase in before next Wed, Oct 17th.

Use THIS offer code at checkout for a 30% discount! ZENSAH30

Enjoy, and thanks for reading ;-)

Product: Zensah Women’s Arm Sleeve

Product Replacing or Similar Products Used (if this is an upgrade, or replacement – please briefly describe older product, and the reason for buying the new one):

First time using a product like this. I was sent a sample from the manufacturing company, Zensah to try out. They were described as UV protective, not necessarily “arm warmers” or “coolers”

Purchased at:
www.zensah.com

Purchase Price:
N/A Retail $29.99
Date Purchased:
09/07
Uses:
Cycling/Running

Strengths: I wore these on the first cool morning. It was about 64 degrees when I started, so I put them on with a short sleeve bike jersey. At first they were a little ‘cool’, but after a minute or so it was like they warmed to my body temperature. The sun started to come up & I noticed that it was getting warmer, but I didn’t feel the need to take them off. With my other “arm warmers” they would hold my body heat in, and I would need to remove them to cool. These were just comfortable. I kept them on until the temps reached about 85degrees. I still never noticed a huge difference when I took them off, so I could have warn them throughout the ride.
The material is very soft. Almost like wearing nothing. The elastic is not binding at the ends and you almost don’t even notice you have anything on.

Weaknesses:
I don’t know that I would wear these running because my body heats up so quickly.
Sizing: I wore a Small/Medium – fit perfect.

Overall Rating (1-5, lowest to highest): 4.5

for similar product reviews, please check out the review section of our website:

www.allthingstriathlon.com
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