To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.
-Steve Prefontaine
Make it simple, but significant.
- Don Draper

Thursday, September 30, 2010

There's No Turning Back Now

For this post I think less is more!

I registered for the HALF, not the full. The confirmation is a little deceiving.
But there you have it! I have registered for 1/2 marathon number two!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Seeking Race Advice From YOU!

Okay - I fully admit it.... I am blinded by the bling! Sure, I love the feeling of crossing the finish line - don't we all? But I really love being handed my bib and race shirt. I want the swag!! If the default shirt is cotton, I have no problem paying the extra $5 to get the tech shirt instead. 

So now I find myself looking at races for May. I know that sounds far off, but the prices for one of them will go up on Friday. I know I'm going to do one of the races for Eugene Marathon weekend, so I figure I may as well decide now and say myself some Hamiltons.  (He is the president on the 10 dollar bill, right?) 

This is where you, my rad readers, come in to play. I need to weigh all my options and see what I can pull off. Here are our races in question:

  1. Eugene 1/2 Marathon. -- May 1, Expo, awesome goody bag last year, tech shirt, finisher's medal, crossing the finish line on Hayward Field (the track where Steve Prefontaine ran his final race, and we know how much I love Pre!)
  2. Eugene Marathon Weekend 5K -- April 30, Expo, awesome goody bag last year, tech shirt, chance to beat last year's PR.
  3. Hippie Chick 1/2 Marathon -- May 8, All women race, finisher's medal, tech shirt, pancake breakfast and mimosas after the race.
  4. Hippie Chick 1/4 Marathon -- May 8, All women race, finisher's medal, tech shirt, pancake breakfast and mimosas after the race.

My thoughts initially were to do the Eugene 5K and Hippie Chick 1/2. BUT then I saw that there were finisher's medal's for the Eugene 1/2. Now I want to do the Eugene 1/2 Marathon, run on Pre's college track since I just finished a race on his high school, and get my medal. THEN, the next weekend I want to do the QUARTER marathon and get my finisher's medal and enjoy pancakes with my mommy (the race is on Mother's Day).

Since you all pretty much have more experience than I do, can I pull this off?  A half marathon followed by a quarter marathon?  Neither race is one I'm thinking "Oh I have to PR". The competition would be stiff, so I know there aren't any awards for me. I just want to do them for the fun of it and to experience new events and routes.

Thoughts? Opinions? Suggestions? Can I pull this off? Ego boosting? ;)

Last year's Eugene 5K bag o' swag!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

100 Days - Week 5 Recap

Oh no. I can't even remember last week. I went home sick yesterday (feeling much better now, but still with a sore back), and its like I lost all of my memory of what happened in the last 7 days.

Um.... hmm.... I ran 3 days. It should have been 4, but it was so dang hot around here AGAIN. Seriously. It is time for this heat to STOP!!

I did Zumba 3 days. That would have been 4, but I decided to just let myself relax on Friday night. Relax and watch Glee non-stop all night. Love it!  Can't wait for tonight's Brittany/Britney episode!

Only had French fries once. At least I'm maintaining once a week instead of sneaking in extra days, so I'm happy with that!

Oh yes, last week did have good running at the start of the week. I remember I had that unofficial PR! Sunday I ran and it was sooooo bad. I didn't realize it was 80º when I started - and I can't do heat, obviously. Ended up doing the walk of shame for the last bit on my way home. A friend even commented today on how she saw me and I looked like I was absolutely miserable and about to collapse. She had a correct assessment!

So aside from Sunday, week 5 was one of my best so far!

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Moment of Strawberries and Sunshine!

....Minus the sunshine since it was at night.

Just to prove I don't ALWAYS choose the scary Halloween character, he's a flashback at last year's costume. It was a fabulous time at Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween party. A little girl even asked to get her photo with me. With ME! I couldn't believe it. I felt so honored!

Jessica was a villain from a Die Hard movie, FYI.

And there you have it.... a moment of Ronda being in a happy Halloween costume! Doesn't happen often, my friends. Doesn't happen often!

Today I am home in my recliner watching Glee episodes back to back. I am hoping I'm not getting another kidney stone, so I'm pounding the cranberry juice. Hence why today its just a short little photo blog. Before we go, here's a flashback to the 2007 Not-So-Scary party. I actually got my mom and step-dad to dress up with me. A former friend came along to help complete the foursome! (We had Thing, but I guess he didn't make it in this photo.)

So, what does 2010 have in store for my Not-So-Scary Halloween party costume? You'll just have to wait and see. It IS another foursome, and a total branch from my "normal" costume ideas!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

A Night In the Life of the Rae Girls

It started innocently enough of my #1 gay's facebook page. Soon enough 3 Rae girls (myself, my mom, and my oldest friend that is practically my sister) had gotten out of control! For the record, I can't even SAY the "V" word, yet apparently I can type it. It looks long, but I assure you it's a fast read. So now, I welcome you to a snippet of my exciting Saturday night!

Ronda Are you boys watching football?? We are here faithfully rooting for the Sundevils!!
Bob likes this.

Heather  that's rude! we rooted for OSU today!

Ronda Uh huh. All Duck fans say that. I never believe it.

Debi  Um. I've been in Autzen when they've shared the OSU scores. No. They're not cheering for the Beavers, Michael - where are you? Be good to my Clarky. I favor him.

Ronda We still love you, Heather! ;) ♥

Debi  Wait. I thought we loved Clark.

Ronda Back off from my gays, Davidson!

Ronda Back off from my gays, Davidson!

Debi You're stuttering Ronda R**. And I won't.

Heather  no i really really did! uggggg. f'ing beaver fans. nevermind! de-friend you all!

Ronda  You can't de-friend us. You're stuck with me FOREVER!!! Muahhahahahha.

Debi  She scares me.

Heather  who scares you? me? ronda? both? i'm actually a good person debi no no. but i'll never show you that side!

Debi  If we're stuck, can we at least steal Carly Rae?

Heather Carly???? and i scare you?!! Carly will be worse than me one day. Just you wait.

Ronda I think you're right, Heather! You were scared of stuff. Carly is a little daredevil!

Debi  Michael and Clark - please step aside.

Ronda  Heather --- -Mike and Clark are waiting for strippers, FYI! Thought you'd enjoy knowing that!

Heather  yeah. bad. she's crazier than me. but maybe your mom will like that about her. we could drop her off for a week or so for her to decide?! don't call us, we'll call you.

Debi  No wonder they're gay. They don't want anything to do with the crazy women that are posting are their walls.

Heather  if i were a guy, i'd be gay too. i love pee pee.

Ronda  OMG that was hysterical!! I can't even imagine how crazy you'd be if you were a little gay twink on the prowl!

Heather  i kind of wish i was!!!! dang.

Heather  i always get accused of being a drag queen. it must be because i'm so sexy.

Debi  It's because you're tall and so godddammmmnn skinny.

Ronda It's cause you're tall and wear heels.

Ronda OMG. My mom and I are way too alike!!!

Heather  and i have big features, a big head. a big vagina. lol. sorry.

Ronda Well you did have 3 kids, so......

Heather it really does go back to normal. kind of. it looks a little different. but it's not like a blow out like everyone thinks. it's a very resilliant muscle. ask your mom.

Debi  Girls - I think we're going to upset MIKE AND CLARK. Let's move to Ronda's page!!!!!!!!!!

Heather  hahahahaha. yeah we should. sorry guys!

Ronda Oh no. Clark LOVES to hear about women parts. Totally!

Debi I do my klegela every day.

Heather  kegals? are you drinking debi no no? sorry your beavers lost. i did root for them! f'ing hate boise state!

Ronda  ‎(Yes, she is drinking!)

Michael Strippers.......booze....more booze........poop on the bar bathroom floor.....tour bus from Tucson.......passing's all a blur this morning.

Ronda  ‎.... and here we are talking about vaginas on Ronda's page.....
Kelli and Steve like this.

Debi  Ronda came out of mine.

Steve sorry but that is a good like...right?

Ronda And now I'm laughing so hard that I'm crying!

Heather  omg i can so tell your mom is drunk. i like her a lot when she's drunk! i think it's because it's the only time she can tolerate me!

Debi  Steve - I'm so sorry - you have walked into the middle of a cluster with Ronda, Mommy and Heather R**. All is good.

Debi  Go Sundevils.

Steve  WHAT???? I know it's all good.....

Debi Drunk? Mommy? What?

Heather  were talking about vaginas and drag queens and kegals. although debi thinks they are klegas right now.

Ronda Yes, Debi isn't all there. I'm not so sure she didn't take Vicodin after all!

Heather i want to see the duggar ladys vagina. just once! now i bet that is a f'ing blow out.

Debi  Flexing excercises.

Steve  klegas or kegals....they either way are really good for you! and dunk...mommy....ronda....heather....vagina.....i'm down!!!!! hahahahaha!!!!

Debi  Mommy is leaving to go potty. Heather - don't you have babies to bathe and put to bed?

Ronda She still hasn't realized that "klegas" is not the right way to spell it!

Ronda OMG she can't spell "exercise" either!

Heather  they're already bathed. the youngest i already sang to, rubbed her back and she's sleeping. the older two are watching pippi longstockings rr and hr style on the living room floor campout style! i'm such a good mommy. no really!

Ronda I want to camp out!!! We still have to have our girls only slumber party. Let's make Dan wait on us when we do that!

Heather  yes! margaritas and grilled cheese!

Heather  i'm so glad "H.Taylor" just scored for ASU to put them ahead of the Ducks.

Steve  i want Margaritas and grilled cheese!

Ronda You had me at margaritas ... and grilled cheese!

Debi  Really? I missed a few moments.

Steve YOU HAD ME AT VAGINA'S....where's the margarita's and grilled cheese!!!!!!

Ronda I bet all my co-workers are sooo interested to know what's going on with our vaginas tonight!

Heather  i love both of those things. except i really do like tomatoes on mine.

Ronda Well you can have a cold tomato on your vagina any night!

Heather  ummm. i'm stuck on repeat i guess. i will put tomato there rr! except dan doesn't like tomato. maybe a beer and a bratwurst?

Ronda Um..... I laughed so hard I spit on myself!

Debi  Excuse me, children. This really could look questionable to the unknowing public. Let's just summarize that Ronda, Heather and Debi have vaginas. Steve does not.

Heather your mom is going to have a heart attack.

Ronda Steve, do you agree with the above statement?

Steve Vagina.....margarita's......grilled I can handle that!

Ronda Are we all having the raddest Saturday night or what??

Heather  steve is dizzy. your mom is ha-wasted. and we are...ummm.. cooking on our crotches?

Debi Heather - I'm a matron in my 50's on her blood pressure medication. And I still have an active vagina.

Steve  well...i agree about yes...I FULLY AGREE!!!!

Ronda I'm about to cook popcorn on mine!!
And earlier tonight I had to have a talk with my mom and Jim about safe sex! I kid you not!

Steve why am i dizzy?

Heather  omg. OMG! I'm the one who can't handle this now. RONDA!!! omg Ronda! Where are you?! Your mom just told me she has an ACTIVE vagina! I don't know what to do with this information. I'm freaking out!

Heather  you can't handle vag/brat talk. it's making you want vag/brat's.

Ronda YOU'RE freaking out??!?!?! How do you think I feel??? This is my mom's hooha we're talking about now!!

Debi Ronda, that is very personal. No need ot share.

Steve  only cause i'm human....i swear i can talk and look and bratwurst wieners and talk about vagina's like a very un-dizzy human!

Heather  yea Ronda. personal. please don't tell everyone that your mom has sex, like your mom just did.

Ronda Oh geez. I need a drink.

Steve wow....

Ronda Don't worry .... she is NOT doing that right now! Phew!

Heather  we had popcorn tonight! we didn't technically have dinner, just lots of snacks.. including fruit! (mom)... and i still have popcorn beside me. but sunflower seeds are yummier, and what i'm eating.

Debi  It's so tempting to say sometihing right about now.

Heather  say it! it's just f.b. not real life.

Ronda Did you put syrup in your hair?

Heather no. i only do that with you. at 4 am. when are you going to start dating jamie btw? he's waiting for you.

***(And this point I will note that Jamie is Heather's ex-husband)

Ronda  OMG. NOOOOOOOOO. I'm not available to date him.

Heather like not mentally available? or ?

Debi  thank God. We've taken a turn in this conversation. Now........ about Jamie.

Debi  Whoa! 56 comments about va jay jay.

Heather please move to the jamie topic room now. thank you, management.

Heather  i love that this has 58... now 59 comments.

Ronda It has to be one of the longest status conversations for a non-celebrity!

Heather  non-what?!?!?!?! you are so a celebrity.

Ronda Why thank you! Should I make a fan page?

Debi  Amen. Let it be done.

Heather  yes. and i'll make 10 fake ronda r** pages so no one knows which one is really yours.

Ronda Oh nice! Maybe I should be on twitter so my fans can follow me?

Heather  yes. i was going to suggest that. u will have to delete ur f.b. page. and just twitter. but sorry, that is the name of the game. and i will be your Casee Cobb.

***(Casee Cobb is Jessica Simpson's best friend/assistant)

Ronda Wow! I always figured I'd be YOUR Casee Cobb!

Jeff ....

Ronda Yes, Jeff? Care to weigh in on the subject?

Heather  i know. i kinda want to be the star. but either way would be fun!

Jeff oh my god, we were dying laughing reading this thread. i'll leave it at that.

The Cast
Ronda R** --(I censor to avoid Google alerts!) --- ME! The angelic only child.
Debi R** -- my mommy, who has just had some oral surgery and wasn't her normal, sober self
Heather R** -- my oldest friend in the world, the wild child, mother of my 3 "nieces", Carly R** being my favorite
Michael -- my number one gay
Clark -- Mike's partner whom I just adore
Steve -- the son of a friend, new dad, major Beaver fan, as we all should be! Go Beavs!
Jeff -- classmate that I've gone to school with since kindergarden
H. Rae and R. Rae - partying at the county fair. Classy!

Friday, September 24, 2010


Was that the most annoying valley girl blog title ever or what? Technically I DO live in a valley, so it's all okay! 

So what am I flipping out over? I have a new unofficial PR! I went out last night for a 5K run and it was fantastic! I wasn't trying to be a speedy pants, but at least twice when I randomly looked at ye olde Garmin it said I was going Faster than 10 minute mile pace. My dream is to be faster than a 10 minute mile, but its i a pace I can't maintain for too long.... yet!

After I finished my 3.1 miles I felt good. I knew I had given it my all and fought through the moment when I wanted to just stop and walk for a bit. Once I got in the door and did a double take I realize that I had run faster than my prior race PR that I set in May BEFORE the whole hip bursitis incident. Woohoo!!  (32 minutes last night, by the way).

Yesterday I did register for the Monster Mash 5K! I think my plan of setting a new PR at the race is what helped me out so much last night. I love the image of me having an awesome race time ... all while running as my dark version of Alice in Wonderland. I promise I won't run with the blood or the knife!! I will bring my bloody bunny for the costume judging portion, and probably bring out my good ol' black eye shadow and nail polish. Let's just hope for a dry day because who wants to see me cross a finish line with black make-up running down my cheeks? Actually, that would be awesome!

I just had to share the close-up version. LOVED my make-up that night. Even had make-up on my fingers!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Three Things Thursday

I will do my very best to not be a total bitch in one of my things. It will be hard, and you'll see why!

1. I think today I will register for the Monster Mash 5K in October. It does feel like the right fit for me. Costumes, a 5K-9 race (and I love dogs, so this is perfect!), its not on a home football game weekend, I have a costume picked out, (see photo on the right!), my mom will cheer ... it's all working out just the way it should. I'm pretty excited. I think I might even run without my camera since my mom will be there to photograph. Maybe I'll just go out and set a new 5K PR for myself. Yeah?

2.  Brace yourselves for the bitch to come out.  My dad and I haven't spoken to each other since mid-February shortly before I left for Orlando to run in my first big race. I'm not sure if you're aware, but it is nearly the end of September. Anyway, I'm in my facebook this morning playing Scrabble, tending to my farm, you know - the important things. And then I see a link posted on my dad's wall. "Girl kills herself after her dad posted this on her wall." And facebook says he has "liked" this link. Huh. Well. Wow. How does one take that? I'm sure his gold-digging wife loves it and hopes that it will happen. (I swear to you I'm not even being dramatic. She really does hate me.) Well, sorry to disappoint you ... but I am here to stay!! The world isn't getting rid of me that easy!  

3.  This Zumba thing is pretty fun! I actually did get out a small towel last night like they suggested, and I totally used it. Next time I'm going to have TWO glasses of water handy instead of just one. I never expected to work up that much of a sweat, but I'm glad I do! Tonight's a running night, so no more Zumba until Friday. I'm so wild, I spend my Friday night's home alone exercising. Eh - you all understand!

Happy Thursday, Everybody!  (Only 36 days until my Walt Disney World vacation!!!)
And on a side, WDW related note, I have the smell of the Frontierland section of the utilidor in my nose. Or is it the backstage Pecos Bill Cafe smell? It is something from that whole area. I can't even describe it. It's one of those smells you just have to experience for yourself! (But do you really want to experience it? NO!)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

WANTED: An October Race

As it stands I am not registered for any races until the Royal Family 5K and the Disney Princess 1/2 Marathon in Orlando next February. This just won't do. I like having one race per month. There is still time for me to pick out a race for October, excluding the final week when I'll be in sunny Florida!

There are quite a few I can choose from. That's the nice thing about Oregon - we never lack for race options year round!  I just can't decide.

Do I go with the Halloween themed race since I love Halloween and there is a costume contest? Do I support the Susan G. Komen peeps and pay a ton of money to run in a little 5K (seriously $35 just to have a chip timed race?!?)? Do I go with a trail race that has brats (vegetarian here!) and fun Oktoberfest sounding entertainment?

What do you look for in a race?? Charity? Cost? Location? Length? Terrain? Distance from home? Swag? I'm all about the swag!  Help me decide!!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Is There A Garbage Can?

If you are a newish reader, here's a tad bit o' background.
I was born being a Disney fan. I loved Disneyland more than life itself. I wanted to be there all the time. I wanted to work there. I wanted to dance. I wanted to operate a ride. I couldn't get enough.
In 1997, I spent Fall term of my sophomore year of college doing an internship in Walt Disney World. My very first time in Florida, and I was finally working for the mouse. He's officially "in my blood now", and also the ultimate Hidden Mickey, since he has a permanent spot on my body. In 2001 I went back. A college graduate that still wanted to be with Mickey. For 2 years I worked in Asia Attractions as a trainer in Disney's Animal Kingdom, and then spent a year in the Animal Kingdom labor office paying cast members.  In 2004 I hung up my ears and came back to Oregon to start a grown up life. And here I am!

Summer 2002. Best. Summer. Ever. !!  Everybody at Kali River Rapids got along. We spent holidays together, had frequent potlucks and game nights, went to the parks together, never missed a Tuesday night at Jellyrolls. It was awesome! Not only did we have fun playing together, we really were an awesome team at work.  Something happened that summer that I think none of us will ever forget. 

We got a call from our managers to cycle out the ride. It was rare to cycle out all of the guests, unless there was a storm upon us or technical difficulty. In my career only two times did we cycle out just to load VIP guests. The first time was for President Jimmy Carter in 2001. This was the second time. 

The line was now empty, as far as the load area goes. Down comes a Cast Member in the plaid vest. I always knew to pay attention when I saw the plaid vest! Who should be following but Demi Moore and Bruce freaking Willis!!  We had been taught to just be normal. Treat them as we'd treat any other guests. Right. Um, hello?? Did the rule makers realize how hard it would be to just "be cool" in the presence of Bruce freaking Willis??

Bruce & Demi were taking their kids to Disney World as part of a birthday celebration for one of their daughters. So we had the whole clan, minus Ashton. The family was piling into their raft when suddenly Bruce freaking Willis turned around and walked right toward me and my friend. Oh. My. Gosh. As Rachel Zoe would say, I die. He had a soft drink cup (with lid and straw???? In Animal Kingdom??) in his hand. "Hey, do you have a garbage can around here?" he said to us. Not missing a beat, and trying to look cute while propped up against the garbage can that I KNEW was infested with cockroaches, I said, "Sure! Right here!". I proceeded to stick my hand in and open the lid for him to toss his cup. I almost died. It took all I had to keep the drool in my mouth.

What's worse is my friend Mike coming up after and grabbing the straw to save as his Bruce Willis souvenir!

They ended up riding 2 or 3 times in a row before we had to get them off when a storm was rolling in. We all just stood around with them laughing and watching them get situated to leave. The boys were drooling over Demi. Kevin, Sarah and I stood together, holding each other up, with our jaws completely dropped.

Overall review:  very cool people. They weren't into themselves. Just like regular people having fun. Except exceptionally attractive people. Demi has ginormous boobs! The guys couldn't stop staring. She had just stepped off of a water ride wearing short shorts, a white tank top layered with a pastel pink tank top --- and no bra. Memorable. Her skin complexion was shockingly not good!  And then there's my buddy Bruce. Yeah, that's what I call him. My buddy Bruce. He is even hotter in person. Amazing build. Not too big, but definitely not too small. HOT HOT HOT!!!

And that's my story of how Bruce Willis and I became BFFs!!
And this is also a perfect example of why I ALWAYS have lipstick on. You never know who you'll run into!

100 Days - Week 4 Recap

Week four was mellow, yet successful!

The goal is for at least 3 runs per week. I had to adjust that on week 4 since it was race week and I had to force myself to taper. I knew that if I didn't cut back one day I'd go overboard.  My final "practice" run was a good one, and my 10K was awesome! Best run I've had in such a long time! I never felt out of breath, my legs never wanted to give out on me. I was in the zone. My upchuck reflex wasn't in the zone, however. There wasn't any vomiting on that run, but I came close 4 times. I'm not sure why this happens, but I need to figure it out so I can get over it!

French fries ... I had some at lunch one day when I went out with a friend. The night before the race I opted to have breakfast for dinner, so as to avoid the grilled cheese/French fry combination. However, after the race, at the start of my post-race hangover (do you get those?) I was starving and had a delicious grilled cheese and yummy fries. I didn't even feel bad about it! Plus, since I was at the coast anyway, I drove down to a marina and Coast Guard station to eat in my car while watching the fog and the boats. It was really nice!

My Zumba DVDs arrived while I was at the race, so I finished out week 4 with the hour long introductory DVD. After just 15 minutes I was already sweating. I think I'm going to like it!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Prefontaine Memorial 10K

Of all races, this is the one that meant the most to me. It is in honor of my running inspiration, Steve Prefontaine. We ran one of his old training courses, right in front of his house, and finished with a lap around the high school track that he began his "career" on. This is the race that I wanted to really do my best at. All of my work has gone into this one day. Going into it I wasn't expecting to have a great performance. I was just going to have fun and remember it was all for Pre.  I was pleasantly surprised when I ended up having a fantastic time and having my best 10K performance so far!

I woke up extra early so I could get to registration before the rest of the runners. I was bib #47 - proving that I was one of those early people to register (there were over 1500 participants)! After getting my bib and shirt I went over to the merchandise table to pick up a nice long-sleeved Pre shirt to wear after the race when I was certain I'd be soaking wet. Immediately I went up to Marshfield High School to get a parking spot at the finish area. I kid you not, I was the very first person to do so! Go me! -- so much for my normal procrastinating and running late!

After getting my bib attached to the Pre shirt I had brought to run in, I prepared for the mile walk to the start area. It was already pouring out, so I just threw on my visor and jacket, and went out with a smile! Happily they did end up having a bag drop at the start. Phew! Here's a photo of me before hand - when I'm still mostly dry.

The night before I had made a fly by of Pre's home, so I figured since I had over an hour and a half until start time I should walk by his house. It was so cute. It was very coastal, and very grandma-ish. My mom would have loved the girly interior of it all. You could definitely tell it was the home of an elderly woman - the living room was very pink, flowery and dainty!  (It's the greenish/blueish house on the corner)

I got to the start area very early, so I wandered around downtown doing some window-shopping. The Egyptian Theater was having an 8pm showing of Back to the Future I noticed, and I was very tempted to stay longer just to go see it!  Without even trying, I ended up at another Pre Memorial at the Coos Bay visitor center.

Visiting that made me very ready to run! As race time got closer, a local band was playing and you could smell food from all the vendors that were setting up for part of some Cruz the Coos festival that was going on. The atmosphere was fun, and the runners were all charged and ready to tackle what would be the toughest course I've ever done!

I think we all accepted the rain, and I was happy it was raining. I do my best running in the rain, so this was perfect for me. Over 1500 runners - and no chip timing? That didn't please me. I like to have an accurate time, and I knew my time would show longer than it really was since I put myself near the back of the pack. I wish someone would have told the walkers to be at the very back because I was passing them constantly for the first few blocks. And really - 5 high school boys walking 5 across just taking their time? That was annoying. There were many high schoolers there, and a lot of them were just out to flirt, impress the opposite sex, be in crazy costumes, and apparently make fun of people that were out there seriously trying to do their best. I even made a comment to one that was right on the heels of a woman in her late 70's. She was doing a lot better than he was, and I just found it disrespectful to make fun of other people!

The first 5K flew by. It was a roller coaster of uphill and downhill, mostly down on the first 5K. Ooh - I have my Garmin results, I'll insert that graph soon!  Along the path were posters with Pre quotes. I loved it! They only helped give me more determination to really go for it and do my best. The killer part came after completely 4 miles. It was Agony Hill. 6/10 of a mile all uphill. The name suited it, that's for sure! But once it was done we had a fast downhill for most of the last mile.  After the final climb up to the track I was ready to hurl. I almost vomited 4 times during this race. I don't know why and I wish I could get over it. The last bit was around the track with the crowd watching. That was pretty awesome!  I crossed the finish and stopped my Garmin at 1:13:20. Not a PR, but Great considering this crazy course!

I really felt this was my best performance. Had it not been so crazy I think I'd have been even faster. I finished feeling Great! Satisfied! I did better than I ever thought I would, and I can't wait for next year's run!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Pimping My Friends - Lesley

Lesley is giving away a cool pair of sunglasses on her blog.

Go check it out! BUT remember, I already plan on winning, so don't be too sad when I win and you don't. Mmkay? Great!  ;)

Check out her contest by clicking here!

Shun, Shag or Marry

On the way to Coos Bay Friday night I was listening to Get in Bed on Cosmo Radio, as I do every night when I'm in my car.  They had a hilarious round of Shun, Shag or Marry.  I did have my initial gut answer, but switched after thinking about it .... Who were the choices?  Count Chocula, Tony the Tiger and Cap'n Crunch.

So now I pose this question to you!

Who would you Shun, Shag and Marry out of Count Chocula, Tony the Tiger and Cap'n Crunch?

Here are my answers!

Shag:  Cap'n Crunch. I LOVE Cap'n Crunch, can't get enough of it - although it does hurt my mouth.
Shun:  Count Chocula. I've never ever had his cereal, so, although I initial was going to shag him and shun the Captain, I realize that if I've never even sampled his product there's no way I could shag him.
Marry:  This was the easy one. Tony the Tiger, obviously! Who wouldn't want to snuggle up with that soft fur every night in bed?* Plus he's athletic and grrrrrrreat so you know we'd have talented children!

And you??

*Of course if Tony was a HUMAN and covered in fur I would be completely grossed out and not let him get anywhere near me! Men and their body hair ... ick.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Pre Race Spazzing

I am having my usual pre-race day flip out . . . all of it in honor of "Pre"!

As I sit here typing I am in a hotel room along the water, maybe only a mile at the most away from where Steve Prefontaine has been laid to rest. I am ready to rest! Next to me I plugged in my portable DVD player and am watching Fire on the Track - the Prefontaine documentary. It's a good one, I suggest watching it if you get a chance!

I imagine I'll be asleep really fast. I've been going non-stop all day. After work I finished packing and got on the road for my 90 mile drive to Coos Bay, Oregon. I checked into my hotel, which seems to be pretty nice for Coos Bay. I couldn't get my room door open, so I had to lug my stuff back to the front desk and get help. Oh yeah - remember that last posting about how I can't travel light? Let's take a look at what I have in my room right now. Mind you I am only in this room for less than 24 hours, and tomorrow afternoon I'll be heading back to my own house.
That would be one purse, 2 totes, 1 small suitcase, a spare beach towel and a "security" blanket to help me sleep.  For one. freaking. night. This doesn't include another jacket in my car, the one I was wearing, a banana, and a cooler full of water and Power Ade!

Okay, so what else? Um, I left my room and stopped at a grocery store to see if there was something I could just fix in my room since I notice I have a microwave and fridge. Eh, not really. I wanted pasta! So I drove 3 miles down to the casino. There was a 24 hour restaurant and I was thinking maybe they'd have a little bit of everything. Whatever - I was so very wrong. I turned around and went back to my car. I settled on a place called the Kozy Kitchen. It was kind of a mom and pop diner with old fashioned home-cooked style food. No pasta. Darn it. But I was so hungry and tired, I was just going to eat there no matter what. It was good. Let's take a look!
A Glamour magazine, French toast and hashbrowns. I didn't eat it all, but what I ate was yummy!

On the way home I saw the street I'd be starting the race on in the morning. I decided to turn down and check it out. What I didn't realize was I was driving the wrong way down a 1 way street. You'd think the barricade in the road would have stopped me? Ha - no.  So a little turn around, and I was heading back toward the hotel. But then I saw another street name I knew. This was Pre's street. I admit it, I totally stalked his mom and drove by her house! We run by it tomorrow, but I wanted to stake it out so I would know what to look for in the daylight. It was really cute!

One final detour to go find the Catholic church area where packet pick-up will be. Found that, plenty of parking, I felt better. Turns out there is also a big festival going on this weekend, complete with a parade! So tomorrow might be a challenge. I'll be sure to be out of my room early and allow enough time to get parked before the spots are gone.

I've combined everyone's suggestes from the prior blog, so I'm not flipping out about tomorrow anymore. Thanks for all the comments!!  My final decisions will be made when I see what the weather will be. Basically it is going to be windy and rainy. My camera phone sucks when it is moving, so I might be brave and ditch the phone in the car, and just use my SPIbelt for my camera if the rain gets bad. I've used my camera for all of my races but 2, and it doesn't phase me at all, so that's good!

I think that is enough random babbling. Time to sleep. I have just under 12 hours until start time now!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Race Day Dilemma

My name is Ronda.
And I don't travel light.

In 2006 I went on my yearly WDW vacation alone. My cousin gave me a ride to my airport hotel and couldn't understand how I had a full sized suitcase and smaller carry-on sized suitcase to check, plus another carry-on sized suitcase to carry, plus a small carry-on ... and my purse.  When I explained that one of the small suitcases was just shoes, make-up and accessories I thought she was going to smack me.

Fortunately I have been able to adjust to new airline fees and am able to condense what I bring. I don't bring heels on every trip now, and I don't really go clubbing anymore, so that saves a lot of room. Unfortunately, I still don't travel light. This applies to race day.

Suggestions are VERY welcomed for this new dilemma!

Due to family things coming up, my cheerleaders aren't able to join me for my weekend and race at the coast. In my mind I would have things for after the race nicely stored in a smaller backpack that they could hold  for me -- maybe a small towel, jacket, my phone, car keys, etc....

The starting line is quite a few blocks from the finish area. I do want to stay at the finish area so I can cheer on all of the other runners and watch the awards. (Note I am not silly enough to have hopes of collecting an award! I'm a realist ... sometimes.) The packet pick-up is 1/2 way between the finish and start, at least that's how it looks on Google maps. The forecast calls for rain. A 70% chance of rain. And 6mph winds. I figure this number can change at the drop of a hat considering it is Oregon. 

There is no doubt I will run with my small camera in my hand. I love the distraction of taking pictures when I'm racing- and I want pictures of Pre's house! I will have to carry my car key with me since now I am solo, as usual. I have my SPIbelt, so that's not a problem. I thought I would be putting Power Bar gels in that belt for a little boost half-way through. Ideally I'd like to have my phone at the finish so I could call my family (they'll all be in Corvallis at the Oregon State home opener football game) and tell them all how awesome I am and that I saw Steve Prefontaine's house!

Now I have to figure out my game plan. Do I park near the finish so I can get to my jacket or towel if I end up soaking wet? Do I ignore the Power Bar gels so I have room for other things in my belt? Do I need to worry about getting wet and melting to the ground a la the Wicked Witch of the West? (Actually, the rain does not scare me one bit. I always do great in the rain!)

I don't know. Thoughts? Advice? Suggestions?  I guess right now I'm thinking I should park near the finish and then enjoy the walk to the start. Ugh. Does anyone want to be my personal assistant??

At Pre's Rock - where he sadly died in 1975.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

100 Days - Week 3 Recap

I'm a little late on my recap of the 3rd week. I guess that's probably 'cause the week was rather uneventful. I can't even remember my total number of miles!

I do know that French fries were my friend. Darn it. I was trying so hard, too. Bummer.
I got in my desired 3 runs for the week. I was set to do 4, but after run number 2 my toe was bleeding so I decided to rest an extra day and let my little toe heal. I didn't really want to be going into this weekend's 10K race bleeding before it has even begun!

Overall my weight is at X-1.5, so that's a plus! Weight loss isn't even a goal, so I will take what I get! I must admit though, it was fun to see a lower number, so I think subconsciously it might be a new goal, but I won't admit it to myself.

In non-100 Days, yet running related news, last night was my last "long" run before the 10K. I tested out the "quick workout" setting on my Garmin. Its about time I try out other features. It was cool to look down and just see my pace and distance left on my goal. It says I "won" and came in faster than planned. Yippee!  Tonight for some "cross-training", if you can even call it that, I'll be walking the golf course in our annual City employee golf scramble. They didn't even bother asking me to be an actual team member this. Perhaps my past couple of years as team cheerleader proved to be more valuable than my skills. However, 2 years in a row I won the Women's Closest to the Pin award - so there!  

Thursday I will probably do one little run through my neighborhood to test out a playlist and make sure everything is feeling good. Then Friday night I finally get to head over to the Oregon Coast for the race I've most been looking forward to all year!  My hotel has a pool and hot tub, so I might actually pay them a visit after a yummy pasta dinner somewhere. And once Saturday morning hits, I am really feeling mentally prepared and ready to run. I've accepted that while I want to do my best, I will probably be walking a little bit, and that is okay. After all, the entire first 5K is uphill. Uphill, on the Oregon Coast .... yeah, let's hope the inevitable wind is helping and pushing me UP that hill instead of holding me back!

And finally - Lesley .... GET NEW SHOES!! Just to prove that I WILL be monitoring this, I took a snapshot of my Google calendar for you!

You see that? September 17th. You said you'd have new shoes by Friday. I'll be knocking on your door and checking. Okay, I won't be knocking. That would be creepy. I'll just be peering in your windows. Don't mind me. I'm harmless.  ;)

And that is all for now!

Monday, September 13, 2010

225+ Miles and 1 Year Later ... I AM A Runner!

A year ago it was just an idea. Another one of Ronda's crazy whims. Nobody expected it to last long at all. But I was determined to prove the naysayers wrong! Why couldn't I be a runner? Lots of people do it. Sure I couldn't even run around the block, but maybe some day I would!

And thus, on September 13, 2009 a new runner was born!

It began with a pair of Nike shoes picked up at the outlet store, a cotton t-shirt (what???), and some Danskin spandex shorts that were a whopping $7 at Wal-Mart. My sports bra was one I bought back in college and had a couple holes worn into the back of it. I uploaded a C25K podcast to my U2 iPod, shoved the iPod in my bra, and went out every other night just to prove to myself that I can do it!  Only a week or so into it I signed up for my first two 5K races - one of which was all the way in Florida! If I had to pay to fly and stay in Disney World, I couldn't possibly slack on the training. It was a great motivator!

It has been the best year! I've felt better overall about every aspect of  my life. It has had highs and lows. Pretty moments - and not so pretty moments. I've met new friends at races, plus discovered all of you cool bloggers out there!

Since I love me a bullet list so much, let's just break it down. All of it. The good, the bad and the ugly!

Let's do the bad and ugly points first - get the icky stuff out of the way!

  • October 2009 - went on vacation to Orlando. Didn't run that week, but sure walked a lot. I was excited to get home and pick up where I left off since I was over half-way through the C25K program. What I didn't plan for was getting the Swine Flu - most likely picked up on the flight home to Oregon. I was out of commission for weeks and went into the first 5K without finishing the program.
  • March 2010 - My internal temper tantrum. Stupidly I felt embarrassed at the Fit For A Princess expo because I didn't have a backpack like the 1/2 marathon runners. I ended up buying an awesome ESPN backpack so I wouldn't have to be seen carrying around my pathetic clear plastic goody bag was that was lacking in goodies.  
  • May 2010 - after an awesome race I felt on top of the world. Went home and decided to run over 4 miles the next day. Welcome to hip bursitis. For the entire month I could only run maybe a couple miles each week. I had to lift my left leg just to put my foot into my shoe. So much for training for my 1st 10K at the end of the month!
  • July 3, 2010 - CRACK went my toes! I tripped walking up a step on a deck causing my toes to immediately start bleeding and changing colors. This was about 12 hours before 10K number 2.
  • August 7, 2010 - under-hydrated, humidity, going too fast, the smell of a seafood restaurant and Thai restaurant merging together ... my first time vomiting at the finish line. (Okay, really - this is a proud moment!)
The Good!
  • I finished that first 5K race, and really impressed myself with how well I did considering it was 27º out, I was terrified and I was just recovering from H1N1!
  • I achieved my goal of running the entire Royal Family 5K without stopping to walk at all. Best feeling ever!!
  • I used the disappointment in my 5K Disney goody-bag and turned it around, deciding right then and there that in 2011 I would be one of those 1/2 marathon Princesses!
  • I had, for me, an awesome PR and actually passed by people while running up a hill. I still haven't beaten that time!
  • My friend and I ran in the Great Urban Race ... and the crazy route we ended up doing looked like a wiener!
  • With everything going wrong for 10K #2 I did the best I could, beating my prior time by 3 minutes - and not bleeding through my socks all that much! And the course? The beginning 2 miles were CRAZY!! (see Garmin results below!)
  • I never gave up! Now, a year later, I am completely addicted. I know I am not the fastest, but I have faith that eventually I'll be a little quicker. I'm not out to break records, just my own!
The Stats:
  • Completed five 5K races (4 road, 1 trail)
  • Completed two 10K races (1 road, 1 trail), with #3 coming up this weekend
  • Raced in 3 different states (Oregon, Florida, Washington)
  • Finished the Great Urban Race for a total of 6.78 miles
  • Grand total of 8 races in year one!
  • 2 pairs of running shoes, 8 running skirts, tons of cute shirts. Bye bye cotton!!
  • 1 new iPod Nano, Nike+ sensor, Garmin Forerunner 305
  • 2 new sports bras .... I REALLY need to make this number higher!!
  • 225 miles since getting the Nike+ sensor in January 2010! I am still in awe of this number!!
After my first race - 35 minutes!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Just A Quick Little Post

It is Race Week!!! I love race week. Any time I have one I pretty much dedicate my entire week to getting my mind and body ready. I'm going to get in a longer run today, before I taper this week. I'm so excited for Friday night and dinner. Woohoo!

Today I'm really enjoying being at home. Laundry. House cleaning. Even ironing - just for fun! Who does that?? Apparently I do. This gave me a chance to finally see the 2nd part of the New Jersey Housewife's reunion. I really like that Caroline Manzo!

Also, after reading Lucy talk about Zumba and seeming loving it, I ordered that Zumba DVD set they keep advertising on TV. I went all out and paid all at once so I could get the "free" faster shipping. Who knows - maybe by the end of this week I'll have finally tried it out! I've been wanting to do something fun for cross-training, but I don't swim and I don't own a bike. I don't like going to gyms and feeling like a fool around all the skinny people lifting weights - and I don't really want to be so close to other people's sweat, or sweat in front of other's. . . . so maybe doing Zumba in my living room will be just the fun thing I need! I have done Yoga Booty Ballet for a very long time and I think I just wanted a change. I'm excited to give it a go!

Yesterday I went to a local Art and Wine festival. We had been given free tickets, which was nice. Upon entering we were given a wine glass to use at all of the booths. Not being a wine drinker I slipped mine in my purse and just took in all the sights and sounds. There were musical acts, locals dancing (always a treat to watch!), many vendor booths and even a rock climbing wall! It was a nice way to spend the afternoon/evening. 

Once home I lingered around my mom's house and forced her to watch Hello Dolly with me. Love that movie! Eventually I went home - and was up until 3 o'clock in the morning watching 9/11 things on the History Channel. This show was the best one so far! I wish I could tear myself away from that stuff, but I just can't. It is just always fascinating to me in some weird way. A never ending supply of first-hand accounts!

And that's that. Back to my chores!

WAIT!!! One more super exciting thing!!!!
Tomorrow is my One Year Running Anniversary!! I cannot believe it!! - more on that tomorrow. :-)

Thursday, September 9, 2010

15 Minute Babble: Florida, Football, Food & Princesses!

Apparently my 15 minutes worth of babbling today will be about Florida, football and food. At least I have one concrete topic, right? (I've just decided to add Princesses. Because we are cool.)
  • Last night I booked round-trip airline tickets to Orlando for my mom and I. It is really REALLY real now! I can't back out. Registration has been paid for the Royal Family 5K and the Disney Princess 1/2 Marathon (okay, so I did that in July!), a room has been booked at Disney's Port Orleans Riverside resort, and now the plane tickets are booked. Looks like I really WILL be a half-marathoner after all. YAY!!
  • In less than 2 months time, my final (for now) Fall pilgrimage to Orlando will be over. This is good and bad. Good because I'll be with my Florida friends in less than 2 months, but bad because eventually that vacation will end.
  • Next weekend I will miss the Oregon State home opener football game. Shucks. But in exchange for that I'll be FINALLY running in the Prefontaine Memorial 10K over on the Oregon Coast. I've been looking forward to this one for most of 2010 so it is hard to believe it is finally here.
  • On a 100 Day Challenge related note, without weight loss being a goal, I've lost 1.5 pounds! Can't complain - and I guess I wouldn't cry if that number continues to get higher!
  • We had a crazy, upset, mentally off man come in to my work today. He was all over the place. Screaming so much he was almost crying, and then switching to raging mad. Apparently earlier on the phone with someone he threatened to come in here and shoot himself in front of all of us. Perhaps that person could have given us a heads up? Nah - that would be too considerate and logical.
  • Yesterday I was a one woman show. People were in meetings, on vacation, at a funeral, at a doctor's appointment, or just gone for the rest of the day. That left ME! Somehow I literally did the job of 4 people all at the same time. I'm pretty much awesome!  ;-)
  • I never wrote about food! What the heck was I going to say??
And last ..... out of curiosity --- 


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Get Out Your Sunscreen Kids, We're Going To the Fair!

Finally, for the first time since my birth in 1978, I went to the Oregon State Fair. I always envisioned it being massive as a child. Like Disneyland. The Mother of all fairs. And it was, it really was. (Did you read that last sentence in old lady "Titanic was called the Ship of Dreams" voice?) By the end of the day our bodies were hurting - not just from the walking, but also from the eating. So, without further ado, let's just jump on in!

First up - The Animals:

My mom loves frogs, so this little guy up against the glass immediately caught my attention. It took forever for me to find the head of the anaconda on the picture on the right. It seems obvious now, but at the time I thought its neck/head region were just another piece of wood sticking up. My step-dad knows Anaconda, the movie, in its entirety - so naturally I had to get that picture for him. This must be a mini-Anaconda 'cause I don't see how this could eat Jon Voight.  Let's pause to have a sing-a-long .... my anaconda don't want none unless you got buns, hun. You can do side bends or sit-ups, but please don't lose that butt.....

Over in the livestock area I found some cute little critters. This first one seems to have stepped out of the pages of a Dr. Seuss book!

This next one, well, I just felt bad for her. How do you walk with all that mass in between your legs? Poor thing.

The Dinosaurs:

For $5 we were able to go in and see animatronic dinosaurs. It was actually kind of cool - and only got our threesome even more excited for our upcoming Orlando trip. It was like Islands of Adventure and Animal Kingdom all rolled up into one - without any ride or water getting us soaked.

Before we went into the dino exhibit I had to use the potty. And yes, I am including a picture from that part of the day. I feel no description is required.:

The Humans:

Normally I get a lot of pictures of "the locals" when I go places. However, on this trip I kind of left the camera in my bag most of the time. I did spot this goofy trio in the photography exhibit hall however.  In a couple of months you'll see these faces plastered on this blog after we return from our big vacation! From left to right we have Jessica, Ryan and Third Wheel, also known as Ronda! (Will I EVER go out not looking like I am ready for a run? I have to STOP with the constant pony tail!!)

And now, what we've all been waiting for ......  THE FOOD:

(Not pictured is the french toast and hashbrowns I had for breakfast, or Jessica's waffle.)

Nom nom nom .... the most gigantic soft-serve I've ever experienced!

Our pre-dessert was good. Time for lunch? Dinner?
 The nachos were mine, but I sampled my first ever fair fries. Only a tad bit though, thank goodness.

Hm... more dessert, maybe? I'm not even going to edit this one bit. The camera phone lens was officially fuzzy and smeared from the cinnamon and sugar all over my hands. That was the biggest elephant ear I've ever had. I shared a lot of it, pretty much just had the edges, and threw over half of it away. But oh how good it was!

Basically, I have major food issues. I don't like food. I'm a vegetarian that doesn't care much for vegetables.  And I haven't had any candy or chocolate in 16+ years. I'm like an overgrown kid that could live off of pizza, pasta, mac & cheese, grilled cheese, and french fries. I don't like to eat in public. BUT ... this is the State Fair. It is 2 and a half hours from my home. Nobody knows me. And I ate!

For the grand finale I'd like to share this photo I took of a food display. They had corn dogs that were almost 2 feet long. I kid you not. It was so gross. And check out the burger and the giant mammoth elephant ear!

And that concludes my trip to the 2010 Oregon State Fair!  (I did go running last night to try to undo the damage!)

And on a side note, on Saturday night I found a huge thing of cheese at the grocery store that was $460.70!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

100 Days - Week 2 Recap

Week 2 was an even bigger success than week 1!
For starters - I only had a small order of French fries ONE time! Woohoo!

I got in 4 runs, which is 1 more than the weekly goal. My mileage was a tad bit less, but I still put out a good effort and didn't shy away from the hills.  OH - and I didn't make any weight loss goals, but I ended up losing about a pound and a half after about a week and a half. Yippee!!  (I probably gained that all back at the State Fair - but that will be another blog!)

Saturday I took a nice 2 mile run through the country out at the North Umpqua River before the Oregon State season opening game.

I even went out in my bright orange just to show my school spirit. Didn't help them win, but they sure did a good job! Gotta love my Beavers! And thank goodness for the sprinklers at my mom's house. I either put out more effort or it was warmer out that I thought, because I was a hot, sweaty mess by the time I got back to her house. As fast as I could rip off the iPod and Garmin I was outside standing in front of the sprinklers!

Sunday morning I decided to get in another run before heading up to Portland. This time I went through different neighborhoods and by the South Umpqua River. (The South has NOTHING on the North - beauty wise!) --Check out my new SkirtChaser visor! That sucker has come in handy. I love not having to wipe sweat off of my face and the extra blocking of sunlight!

To end the 2nd week, I hit the Fit Right NW store in Portland to use my 10% off coupon and $15 gift certificate from last month's SkirtChaser 5K. There were so many things to choose from. I loved this one bag, but realized I have way too many, so I had to pass. It was too hot in the store for me to even considering looking at things I had to try on. I wanted to look at sports bras, but again - so many to pick from was overwhelming for me. Compression socks were $60 for a single pair. If I'm going to spend $60 it is NOT going to be on socks. So in the end I got yet another cute running skirt. You can never have too many!