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

Monday, May 30, 2011

Run #4.7 - If You Can't Run, PLAY!

After the last run of 2 successfully pain free miles, I was really excited to have a good "long run". For me, hitting 3 would be considered a long run at this point. I was a bit nervous, but I threw on my planned outfit for the Seattle Rock 'n' Roll Half, to make sure it all felt comfy, and went out the door. 

Biker Boy stayed with me for the first mile, then I gave him permission to just go at his own pace since I was going to start walking/running versus just running. Oh how naive am I? I wanted a good run, so I should have known better. First off, I have been having a bad Meniere's weekend. I mean terrible bouts of it that rival that of my Shamrock 15K episode. Saturday I was almost unable to even walk through the store and couldn't even say a complete sentence. SO, why I thought I could run is beyond me. I kept drifting right and floating off the path. Eventually I just had to stop and grab a tree and try to see straight. I pushed on, and at 2 miles I knew this run was a failure. My leg was hurting again, my KT tape was totally falling off, I wasn't able to see straight - let alone walk straight - and I ended up in a little crying session. We turned around and I continued to walk until I felt good, run until I didn't, walk, run, yada yada yada.

Then we got to the train. Like a little kid, I was distracted!

Every single person my age that grew up in this town grew up playing on the train. I can't tell you how many hours I've spent on it - yet I haven't touched it in probably 15 years. Naturally since I wasn't feeling on top of my game, I had no qualms about dragging myself up on the train!

Then as we started on our way for the last mile and a bit, I saw the play structure. We both looked at each other and took off. Using it as an excuse to practice for Warrior Dash, we aimed for this crazy, triangular rope structure.

Biker Boy was up at the top in no time at all. Let's pause and check out his new running clothes, shall we? I know he's pretty proud of them and the fact that they match. He's from North Carolina and Ohio, but he certainly looks like quite the Oregonian in his adidas and Nike clothes!

Next up, it was my turn to try climbing. I wasn't so fast, considering the fact that my left leg wasn't feeling amazing. (FYI, it still feels better than it was, but oh my gosh, why can't I just REST??)

Check out this tricky cross-leg move I'm working on.

After testing out pretty much every piece of the play structure - minus the swings - we were on our way back. I feel like I gave it a good effort before saying we just had to have a fast walk. I knew I was done - but even if I was walking I wasn't going to do it slow and slack.

Near the end we went by my grandpa's house (we're neighbors, isn't that cute?). I had to finally get my picture with MY tree.

This is "R*nda's Tree when She was Three"!  He planted this for me and it wasn't even the height of those shrubs right next to it. Now I can stand under my tree without even needing to duck. I love my tree!

And that was that. 4 miles in about 52 minutes. Eh, oh well. I'm not trying to set records, I'm just trying to keep moving until Seattle. I swear a miracle WILL occur. May always sucks for me, so expect great things on Wednesday!?!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Run #4.6 - Ahhh.... That's Nice!

*What's wrong here?
I took off 3 full days from running. By the end of what would have been the fourth day I couldn't take it anymore. I just HAD to go run. After dinner, and watching Weeds (I finally just bought the latest season to be released on DVD. Ssh - no spoilers. I don't want to know anything!!) I put on my skirt, shirt and shoes and went out the door.

It was kind of nice to not have a plan. Mid-run I realized I never even set a time or distance goal. I was just out there to test my legs and see how they liked it. My pace must be just naturally improving (I know I say that a lot, I guess I'm still shocked by it) because I wasn't trying to be speedy, but I was staying around 10 minute mile pace. Now if I give a little oomph, 9:25 is comfortable. What the heck happened to me?? Love it!  One mile in I felt great. No issues at all. So I kept going. 

I did have some nerves creep in when I hit 1.4. That seems to be the spot where I start to first feel a twinge, then go down for the count by 1.8. Not this time! I hit 1.8 and was so happy that I kept going and maybe did speed up just a tiny tad.

Finally I was done. 2 miles in just under 20 minutes. No stopping. No mid-run stretching. No walking. Just two miles of blissful running. I was so happy! And relieved!  I had thought of going another mile, but realized that for now 2 was okay - and I'd hit more than 3 on Sunday when I once again attempt a long run. I'm just so happy to have finally felt success. This was the first time I did 2 solid miles without pain since the Hippie Chick race. Hopefully this pain free streak can continue and Seattle will be fun and not as slow!

*No compression socks/sleeves is the main correct answer (I remembered them mid-run and by then it was too late). Although you could point out the KT tape is coming off. Also, my floor is dirty and needs cleaned.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Who's That Shirtless Guy? And Another Nonsense

Do you know who this is?
(We'll find out at the end of this post.)

What the heck do I blog about without running? I guess we'll find out!

Ah - here's something..... after 3 attempts on the "X" part, I have my KT Tape on pretty darn secure and tonight I will attempt to run a couple of miles and see how it goes! This is my longest stretch without running in a long time. I mean it has been 3 full days without putting on my running shoes. Yikes!

My aunt/godmother had a massive heart attack last night just before 8 o'clock and was flown by helicopter up to the next large city. She had surgery and is doing well. Fortunately the doctors at that hospital think it wasn't as bad as the doctor's here do. I suppose that's some bit of relief? They actually think she has had TWO this week. Yikes! I guess hearing that news, and having to call my mom and tell her, kind of put my running stress into perspective. It is just a sport. A hobby. Okay, an addiction. But having a little leg injury is really no big deal when you compare it to possibly having two heart attacks in just a couple of days! My mom and grandpa are heading up to see her now; my other aunt is heading south; my uncle was there all night with her. We're a tough family, she'll be okay!

I'm REALLY looking forward to going to Seattle. I've actually started writing a list of things I want to do.
  • Hard Rock Cafe - I love their fries, and we know I can't turn down a good fry!
  • Getting a picture at Pier 70 - aka the Real World Seattle house. Remember when the Real World used to be good?
  • The Space Needle! I don't think I've ever been to the top. If I did go I was too young to remember.
  • Pike Place Market. Been there, done that, want to go again!
  • Naturally I am really excited about the expo! I should probably have Biker Boy hold my purse and keep all credit cards away from me. At least the odds on me hugging someone and bursting out into tears this time is pretty darn slim!
  • Everclear - I saw them in concert before, not even seeing them as a fan. They were the opening act for Matchbox 20, but once I got back home I went out and bought one of their albums. They put on a great show, so I think this will be a fun concert!
I hope nobody tries to mug me. Or make me drink Starbucks. Or listen to Nirvana endlessly. Seriously, I DO miss the 90s. A lot.

I think Kim Kardashian's engagement ring is ridiculously huge. It reminds me of the lame guys around here that jack up their trucks onto gigantic wheels. Overcompensating much?

And now the photo from above. Did you figure out who it is?
Christopher Walken
Yeah, for real.
Check out this page:  It is so cool. It is just a bunch of rarely seen old photos of celebrities. And not fake celebrities we have now, but old school people. Like Marlon Brando, Charlie Chaplin, Jeremy Irons, Meryl Streep, Sean Connery - HELLO Ladies - seriously, check out Sean freaking Connery! Who knew he was all built and shiny?, Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe (whom I'm now totally in love with as a "real" person not in make up), John Travolta, Jack Nicholson, even Johnny Depp!

And that's all I've got for today. For now.
I hope your Thursday treats you just fine!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Thoughts With One Month To Go

Here we are, May 25th. One month from now I will be done racing, hopefully showered in fresh clothes, enjoying the Everclear concert with my chunky medal around my neck.

One month until the Seattle Rock'n'Roll Half Marathon. YAY!!! I AM excited. Excited and concerned. This is my leg as of this morning:

I decided that at this point ANYTHING is worth trying, so last night I went to Big 5 and bought some KT tape. We'll see if it helps at all. Can't hurt, right?

For now, mentally, I am okay! I'm kind of shocked. I imagine I'll start to freak out soon if I don't have a good run. Considering I'm pretty much going to do this race on zero training, I am feeling rather calm. I have accepted that this is not going to be a time goal race. I will just finish and be happy that I do! I ran SIX whole miles last week. Wait, I walked a bit on the last 1.5 miles. But still, 6? I mean that's almost half of what a long run should be really.

Actually, the fact that I am NOT freaking out about being under-prepared is kind of freaking me out!  Oh well, que sera sera. 

On a positive side, I do have my outfit ready to go. Not sure if I'll be in a hat or not - I'll decide that on the morning of the race - but otherwise I'm all set. Comfy, loose fitting shirt, trusty SkirtSports skirt, compression socks and my adorable adidas. I'm ready!*

*Now someone just tell my leg/knee/IT band that it is ready, please? Thanks!

Have you raced without much preparation or right after an injury?

Have you/do you use KT tape? Thoughts?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Think You Had A Crazy Race?? READ THIS!!

No, not this blog. Ha - as if I'd ever be able to dream of doing anything THIS awesome.

She is my female running hero now for sure! She is running 50 half marathons in 50 states ... but there are marathons and ultras mixed in as well. Greece, Hawaii, Alaska, Disney World .... CHINA!

You seriously need to go check out Becka's latest race report. She is AWESOME!!

Okay - so stop reading my babble and go witness this insanely hard core race report for yourself!

There she is .... that's Becka in the center #2607. She likes NKOTB, too!
And "L" next to her in the matching skirt? She was at this same epic race. GO READ IT!

Fruit Fly: A Recognized Hero

Remember that time I saved the City from certain disaster? I don't like to toot my own horn or anything, but I risked my life for the people of this community I live in. Me. Fruit Fly. Protecting the public.

It did not go unnoticed!

It is confirmed. I AM a hero. A statue will soon be made from the above photo. 

I am but a humble servant. Here to serve.

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Feminist Comes Out in a LOUD Way

Remember the Robot? The woman at work that can't type an e-mail that makes sense? Hold on, I'll share it again - in case you missed it the first time:

This Thursday and Friday would you please be able to to afternoon break and mail on Friday because Theresa will gone at 2 on Friday
And would you be able to either do switchboard or take water call on Friday from 2 on

And would you be able to do mail on Thursday

Karen said she could if you could help her on Friday afternoon
Thank you

Lovely, ain't it? I say "ain't" here because I kid you not, she was pulled aside once and told to stop saying "ain't" when talking with customers. 
Anyway, this robot/Gremlin (I suspect she is part Gremlin because she seems to fear the rain and getting wet. It will be 80ยบ with ONE cloud in the sky and she'll put on her winter jacket and grab an umbrella) has REALLY set my blood boiling.

The door is under construction. We are getting a new card lock system, so until it is finished, the door slams shut instead of gently closing. It was propped open, but the prop slid out of place. So she had a co-worker's husband re-prop it open this morning. It was then undone when we locked the building for lunch. After lunch she tried to prop it open, but it keeps sliding shut. 

So then our water meter reader leaves. She makes him stop to fix it. He does. He fixes it in a fine way because he has a brain. BUT she says, without a hint of sarcasm or facetiousness about it:
Oh, so it takes a MAN to do it.
Dead serious. She believes only a man can make a simple door stay open.
After a loud rant from me questioning why ONLY a man can prop open a door and how far back are we setting ourselves, I sent myself to time out at the other side of the building. Are you serious? How many decades does she keep setting us women back every time she opens her mouth? She also believes only men can change the time on a clock.

Now instead of just hosting seminars about how to dress like a lady and not embarrass yourself (i.e. NO skinny leg jeans with tiny baby doll shirts and your stomach hanging out) I shall host seminars about empowering yourself to do things. Women can open doors. Women can change clocks. Women can do everything men can do. Don't think we can pee standing up? Ha - you go to a race and tell me that. We fly planes. We live in the International Space Station. We run companies. We drive long-haul trucks. We fight fires. We work on Wall Street. We are judges. We are Senators. We vote (I know, shocker, right?) We are equal (of course by the time I'm done with this we'll probably be superior!) ;)  We do NOT just sit in our long pencil skirts with our hair in buns taking dictation for the boss and then fix his coffee. We have progressed, dammit!! We ARE the boss.

This all comes on the heels of me watching Strange Sex and Sister Wives on TLC. What is with this rash of women all over that are so insecure that they will settle? Would YOU marry a guy (that I would never even look twice at) that has THREE other wives? Do you think that little of yourself? Would you aim to be 1000 pounds so that your chubby chaser husband will love you more than any other large women? Would you want to be with someone that fully admits he wants you large so that you HAVE to depend only on HIM for your basic needs?

Come on ladies, we are better than that!!

And this concludes my rant.

Bra burning tonight at my place! 7pm sharp - be there are be square. Or is it pointy? Oh no, do I have to get one of those weird retro pointy bras if I want to fit in at my work place?

Run #4.5 - Aye, Thar Be Big Planes & A Winner Says I

My inspiration for the day, courtesy of Julie!
Like it? You can get one, too!
Not one to slack when I have a goal (even though ultimately I am the biggest slacker I know) I refused to skip my long run on Sunday. I refused to NOT attempt my long run on Sunday might be more accurate. After a yummy egg/bagel sandwich fixed for me by Biker Boy, I put on my running ensemble and we were quickly in the car heading toward the Columbia River. Our plan was to run on this nice, paved path toward the airport, along the river, for 4 miles, turn around, run back. 8 miles. Yeah, I haven't done that since the Eugene Half Marathon ... but I have Seattle to prepare for, and my calendar says Eight! Given that in the past I just SUCK at running with Biker Boy I told him to just go at his own pace and not worry about running at mine. I knew I'd always have him in my sights, and I am a loner, I do better without pressure from others next to me. Of course I've only run with Lesley and Biker Boy, and Lesley helped ... but whatever. Sorry BB - I just cannot keep up with you.

SO, the first mile I felt great. Around .7 I started eyeballing the fields of tall grass. Why? I HAD to go. If I couldn't find a bathroom I was trying to see where I could just nestle in and blend. Fortunate for me, once we crossed the road and hit the path right at the water I saw a boat landing. And what was there? A porta-potty. Woohoo! Hallelujah! I forgot to pause my Garmin while I was scaling down a hill to get to it, but oh well. .... I didn't really feel I needed to count my potty break and wandering around to get to it in my running time. So pit-stop done, back on the path. It was at this point that I started to be fascinated by the planes. I've never been under a plane when it is taking off, and it was pretty cool! The Columbia River and Washington on my left, airplanes on my right, I was really enjoying the path. And then I hit 1.75. Biker Boy was so far ahead, with his music going, he couldn't hear me shout his name. I just had to stop, nearly cry from frustration, and wait for him to come back. I knew I couldn't go any further if I was going to make it back to the car. Talk about disappointment - but at least I gave it a shot, and kept it at an easy effort.

The planes distracted me again - some of them pop up so fast and are silent, then there are those ginormous ones that looked like cruise liners in the sky. I had a blast watching them. Even as we ran back I'd stop and yell for BB to look at the latest one flying overhead. Running again, I was in and out of feeling okay. Then came Queer as Folk on my iPod, a song from my favorite TV show of all time. Fast pace, great memories, it put me in the zone. Forget that I wasn't feeling well, I heard this song and my legs went.... at 9:22 pace for quite a while. Sure, my inspiration was my subconscious desire to be a skinny, smooth, shiny chested gay boy dancing topless in a club under the disco balls and flashing lights, surrounded by other hot, muscular, sweaty men sipping on the latest "must have" cocktails. Oh. My. Gosh. I really AM a gay man in a girl's body -- this is what my #1 gay said last weekend on facebook! Pretty sure I'm just a straight girl, but maybe I was really inspired to run fast and look hot so I could dance with the yummy boys?? Aye aye aye, I need a drink!

3 miles in less than 34 minutes - there was a LOT of walking in that last mile. While I ran I was forcing myself to keep it around 10:15ish (or slower if I could). But there were those fast bursts here and there. Biker Boy and I had a little pep talk while I was trying to mentally keep it together. We discussed how the fitness level is there, my mind is there, I just have to go easy and let my leg heal. So Seattle's goal is still just to finish. I won't cry if I have to walk more than I want. I just want to have a fun Rock 'n' Roll experience, taking in the people and sights. If I can run here and there, that will be great, too!

After the run we took fast showers and went to an old theater to see Pirates: On Stranger Tides in 3-D. I have bad movie luck, and was stuck behind the most annoying dad ever. I swear he was sitting in a booster seat and kept wiggling. I eventually just had to move seats so that I could see the screen. I did the math, his head took up 1/8th of the screen. That's too much. Jack Sparrow is still freaking hot! Loved Barbosa. Penelope Cruz wasn't totally annoying to look at - she had the raddest costumes ever!! Have you gone to the movies right after a run? Yeah, this was my first time .... let's just say we completely inhaled our large, buttered popcorn BEFORE the movie even started!

* * * * * * *

I entered everybody into an excel spreadsheet - so I could do the math right and play fair - and we have a winner of the awesome "Ain't Nothin' Gonna Break My Stride" cup. The winner is.... drum roll please....

Cupcake Runner ~ check out her blog: Running and Cupcakes

*Back story: We "met" via a virtual race that was going on. She won! But I WAS in 2nd place for a while, and it was this race that motivated me to run my ass off and get my current 5K PR and win the age group award in the next race. I still didn't beat her, but I had a great time trying to keep up!

Did you have a good run this weekend?
Are you doing any Rock'n'Roll events this year?
Did you go see Pirates yet?

Friday, May 20, 2011

Is This How It Starts?

Apparently the world is supposed to end tomorrow? I totally missed the memo. Had I received it (I did get the one about the covers for the TPS Reports - don't worry!) (Office Space. Watch it. Love it. Empathize - it IS my life.) Yeah - had I received it I'd have totally ditched work and done something really awesome for my last day on this planet.

But is it REAL? I mean look at all that's happening....
  • Arnold cheats on Maria with a very unattractive woman.
  • Arnold announces he is putting acting on hold .... because his Hollywood career is booming?
  • Zsa Zsa is in a coma AGAIN.
  • Jeff Conway is in a coma and sounds like he might not come out of this one.
  • That wrestler guy, that suddenly my entire FB friend list just desperately misses even though they never mentioned him before or seemed to care about the WWE (except AJ who works for the WWE - he gets a pass), died in a car accident.
Obviously the next thing to happen is The Rapture. 
I should stop making fun of it. I joked to my mom that since I'll be in Portland tomorrow, at least I'll have a good view when Mount Saint Helens blows again. But then wouldn't it be a little awesome if she DID have a hiccup and give me something cool to look at? ..... side note, I almost changed majors in college because I love volcanoes and wanted to study them.

So I'm kind of bummed that I didn't know it was ending. I never got to meet Sir Anthony Hopkins and marry him. I'd have traveled more and spent the $50 that I have in my purse. I guess I have time to spend that before tomorrow. I would have tried to meet more of you. You are all seriously rad and crack me up all the time. It's been fun! Maybe -- if you want -- on Sunday when we're not on ye olde internets (or Earth) anymore, we could all meet on my cloud. I was thinking of having a post Rapture mixer - some drinks, (we can do whatever we want now because we are on a freaking cloud!!) maybe a BBQ, some karaoke. It'll be "very", as they say in Heathers

No need to RSVP, just stop by! See ya Sunday!

Run #4.4 - Wisely and Slow They Stumble That Run Fast

Today was a good day, yet challenging.  Challenging because I only let myself run ONE mile. One. (Go back and re-read that "one" like old Rose in Titanic. Ah, love that movie!) Good because I had no pain in that one mile!

I really have nothing to say about the run itself. I mean it was just one mile. 10 minutes of running, not allowing myself to go fast.

I find it funny that May is National Runner's Month, according to Dick's Sporting Goods, yet during my entire "career" as a runner (all one year and a half of it) I have been injured to the point of not being able to really run twice. Both times have been in May. Last year it was hip bursitis, this year it seems to be my IT band.

I had to mentally be strong today and not let the numbers get to me. I hate uploading my run to Daily Mile and seeing ONE mile. I am capable of so much more. Then I looked back at the last couple of months and realize that this is the first break I have given myself since Thanksgiving. It has been go-go-go, race-race-race. While that is easy for some people, for me it is not. With a half and quarter marathon already under my running skirt this month alone, I suppose it isn't terrible that I have to ease up a bit and just let my leg recover.

So as much as I hate seeing my stats so low right now, I know that easing up and healing will allow me to increase those numbers once I'm okay - versus continually hurting my leg and then REALLY being on the injured list.

Ugh, I hate being such a grown up some times!*

*With that said, I haven't ruled out my scheduled 8 for this weekend. We'll see. Baby steps - giant leaps. I seem to have no in-between?

**And with that I have a goal for Seattle RnR... finish! In ONE piece. And run through the finish line. The rest, I'll just keep moving fast or slow - and I'm running with my camera this time, so who knows what you'll get to see!
You have through this weekend to click this link and enter my "on the down low" giveaway!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Race Bib/Scrapbook Project

I mentioned a couple of days ago that I'm starting on my race bib project. I know they have those little books where you can put your bibs, and sure, I entertained the idea of getting one. Then I thought more and I wanted to be able to take some things out of my race box and display that with my bib. This led to me thinking I could add in some pictures from each race. And thus, I've taken one simple idea and it has become a 'cover my floor and surround me with supplies' type of project!

While others were out running, biking, swimming, doing hot yoga, eating, dancing on tables, walking dogs, etc... I was home. Sitting in my old lady recliner. Working on my racing scrapbook. I seriously have such a wild life!

Having 19 completed races under my belt, this isn't going to be some simple "whip it out in one night" project. I think I completed just shy of a dozen pages - but naturally most races have 2 pages, with some like the Princess Half and Eugene Half getting a HUGE layout! (I totally play favorites!)

So anyhoo.... here's a peek at some of my pages from last night. The photo quality is terrible since I used my phone and didn't bother to take the pages out of the protector sheets, so they have that lovely glare!

The Eugene Marathon 5K from 2010 .... for me this 5K was a huge success and also my first chip-timed road race. I had earlier participated in a chip-timed trail race, but this one felt much more "formal". And I was very thrilled with my results!
1/2 of my Butte to Butte 2-page layout. This is where I set my current 10K PR that I am hoping to finally break this year! Fine, yes, I totally printed out photos that still have the copyright. I just can't pay a week's salary for one 4X6.
The full SkirtChaser 5K spread. Fun race, fun after party .... my running SUCKED!! Hot. Humid. Side stitch. Dehydrated. Under-fueled. First time tossing my cookies at a finish line!
So there's a sample of what I've done. I'm a total slacker sometimes, and these pages really show it. Once in a while I get more creative and put more effort into it. I figure maybe that will come out when I get to the "big" races? Who knows. I'm procrastinating on those right now. 

* * * * *

36 days 22 hours 36 minutes until the Seattle Rock 'n' Roll 1/2 Marathon. Hopefully I'll be able to run by then. I, being the fancy expert doctor that I am, have realized that it isn't exactly my knee that is the problem. *sigh* My IT band and I are going to bond for a while. I'm going to make it feel special and loved. I have a tote with me today with all of my essentials ..... The Stick, Arctic Ease, a wrap thing, photos to update my picture frames at work (which probably include a photo of myself with Linda Prefontaine!) and some Animal Crackers. I'm ready to fix my leg and get back to running before I go insane!

And you might need to click here. Or don't. I mean you probably shouldn't. You probably don't want to try to win my personal little giveaway. I mean who would want that. Yeah, don't click here.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Run #4.3 - Easing Into It (& Glee)

I was going to run last night but decided to work on my race bib scrapbook instead. Also, I want to try to do my week day runs in the morning, so I thought today would be a good day to start. 5:30am my alarm went off, at 6 I got up. By 6:25 I was out the door and planning on 3 miles. 

As I was running I thought about it and decided to just go for 2. Considering the pain I was in during the last two runs I wanted to start slow. I tried to force myself to slow down as well. I got in the two and only felt a little tinge just at the very end. I did give myself a slight walk break heading up one hill/corner since my leg doesn't like sharp corners right now. Other than that I think it went pretty smooth. I'm glad I shortened it, although cutting back on the running is REALLY getting to me. I feel like such a slacker. I mean I already was one, but now it is worse! So 2 miles in 20 minutes. Crazy that this was me slowing down. I guess I had to have a major temper tantrum about my slow pace to end up speeding up without even trying?

* * * * * 

In other news, you have got to go check out Katye's blog post today. I just LOVE this post. Too freaking cute. If you like to run and you like dogs, you will love this!

* * * * *

I loved Glee last night. Oh my gosh did it ever give me a lump in my throat, while simultaneously bringing back some season 1 nostalgia. I have always had a soft spot for those with Down Syndrome, my lifelong friend having a younger sister with it and thus growing up just having it feel like the "norm" (if that makes sense?), so this episode really hit me. Sad, yet a happy ending. Loved it. Can't wait for next week!

* * * * *

Ain't nothin' gonna break your stride? Ain't nothin' gonna hold you down? Then go here and enter my sort of hush, hush "Thank You" giveaway!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Because YOU Deserve It!

This is my spontaneous, low key giveaway!

I was shopping during my afternoon break and spotted something that just screamed "RUNNER!" at me as I walked by. Nothing fancy, but something that I thought would be cute and fun to get as a sort of THANK YOU to all of you awesome fellow bloggers that continually show me support and give me great advice on this crazy adventure called running!

As soon as I got off work I hurried back to the store, cash in hand, and purchased this awesome coffee cup that I want to give to one of you! And I'm making this so easy. I'm not even giving bonus entries for sharing this giveaway on blogs, Twitter or facebook ... because I want it to go to YOU! 

I know some people just enter once. Some like to take advantage and play the odds with many ways to enter. SO, I'll make it easy and give you a few options! (Post a new comment for each entry for them all to count!)
  1. *Mandatory* (I'm laughing and only making it mandatory because every giveaway is this way): You have to follow me! Worship me! Read my blog!
  2. Share with me your go-to morning beverage of choice for another chance to win.
  3. I'm needing fresh music. What's your number one running song these days? Tell me for another entry!
  4. Post as a comment any little trick or power move you use when racing to pull out of a tough moment and regain your "stride".
  5. And last, but certainly not least, share a running lesson that you've "learned the hard way" via running. Did you have a terrible chaffing incident that you still shudder when thinking about? Did you try the wrong GU and suffer for it later? Any sort of lesson that I can learn from - or laugh at with .... share it for one more entry!
Five options .... and if you have some rad reason why you should get a bonus 6th entry, then just go ahead, be brave and post it! Be creative. Humor me while I read every one's comments!

I'll pick the winner Monday, May 23 early in the morning. Happy Running - don't break your stride! Good luck! 

Run #4.2 - I Was Awesome for a Bit

I totally forgot to document my second run as I prepare for the Seattle Rock'n'Roll Half Marathon. Oopsies!

Okay, so this will be fast. Friday night I wanted to do 4 or 5 miles. I was feeling amazing after the sub-30 5K training run. Threw on my shoes, skirt and shirt and was out the door. I couldn't believe how awesome I was! I mean I was running and felt like I was working, but not pushing too hard. I wasn't slacking, but felt a good pace. I guessed I had to be at 10:23 (not 25, not 20, but 23 dang it!). Imagine my surprise when I was more like 9:15! I was obsessively checking my Garmin and was always in the low 9's. Completely baffled, I just continued on. I felt maybe I was going to fast to maintain that pace for 5 miles, so toyed with pushing for the 5K distance, then backing off for the last two. 

It is amazing that all of this decision making happened only in one mile. Yes, for that first mile I was kicking ass! And then my knee froze up. I realized that I forgot to bring out the Stick and roll, as some of you had suggested to me. Dammit. I tried to continue and run through it. At 1.5 miles I HAD to stop, grab a tree and figure out how to make my leg move. In that 1.5 miles I had only been running for 14 minutes.  My adding machine tells me I was averaging a 9:33 minute mile pace. Hot dog! I again thought to just go for it and maybe ease up. I barely made it .09 of a mile before I was down again. I crawled my way to a bench and sat down. My leg was in all sorts of pain and I knew I wasn't going to be able to finish any of my goals for the evening. I was really disappointed. I mean I feel like my head is so in the game and all of those mental battles I had earlier, I've kind of gotten them in check a bit and gotten stronger. If only my body could keep up. 

So I pushed it to 2 full miles in just under 20 minutes. Then it was the lonely walk of shame home. Over a mile I had to just walk, regain normal function in my left leg and most importantly NOT let it get to me. I have to stay positive and just enjoy the fact that for 14 minutes I was feeling like a super hero!

Tonight will be run 3. I'm going to try to force myself to not be speedy pants and see how far I can go with my leg. It feels a LOT better, so maybe rest was a good idea!

Going Postal, Medals and Punctuation

Hello Blog World! I've missed you! I don't even have a set topic, but I just missed writing, so here I am!

First off, I'm about to go postal at work. I can't tell you how frustrating it is to work with a robot that seriously needs to be on medication and/or retire. I'm hoping for retirement, but I honestly believe I will retire before this woman does -- and she's been here 32 years! Pretty sure she'll just die in her chair and we'll watch her get wheeled out, then continue on with our day. If you're my fb friend, she's the one that leaves the 1 square of toilet paper behind... but the record shows one time it was 1/2 of a strip. Half! Anyway.....

And her shirt looks like a table cloth today. 

Okay, so yeah.....

My long run didn't happen this weekend. I was walking the golf course on Saturday and things were fine. Then I had to go down the hill on the 8th hole and my knee froze again. We still has 10 holes to go! Don't worry ... the vodka and the rum helped to soothe away the pain. My mom and I are such twins, we both spent the last 9 holes with the same exact limp. I had intended to run 7 miles on Sunday, but Coach Lesley said to take a break. It is driving me nuts to not run. I haven't gone since my 2 miles on Friday night. Did I even blog that run? OMG, I'm behind! Okay - that will be next. Oopsies! Tonight I resume. I might just go for a 5K again, and see how my knee feels. If all goes well, I'll increase to a 5 mile run on Thursday night.

Last night I began working on my race bib scrapbook. I have had my race box going for a year and a half now. I put my bibs in there (with labels on the back showing the race, date, location and stats - I'm not anal at all!) as well as any little souvenirs and race programs I've accumulated. I was sad just having all of my memories in a box, so I decided to make a scrapbook of my adventure. I say adventure because that is what running is for me. Sure, I've been running for a year and a half now, but at the same time, I've ONLY been running for a year and a half. In comparison to most people, I AM still a newbie.

As I was getting out paper and scrappy supplies I had to pull my medals out and set them aside. For the first page of my book I found a page that seemed very appropriate. I stopped, looked at my medals and read the words on the paper. I've been so hard on myself, so I think it was good to just reflect and see that I did a lot of work to get to where I am. I'm so much better than I ever imagined, yet I have so much more improving to do. Last night I just focused on the past. Where I started, as a girl not able to even run around the block, to where I currently am - training for my 4th half marathon and a non-stop racing schedule going into 2012.

More than some. A lot less than others. I look at this and see it as achieving what I always thought was the impossible. I can't even pick a favorite medal. The Princess & the Frog was my first medal, so obviously it is special to me. Next came the Jingle Bells Run medal ... which is different from the rest in that I earned that by getting first in my age group. Then we have Beauty & the Beast which is my first race with my mom.... awww.  Followed by the Princess Half. Obviously that is a beauty! And a HUGE accomplishment. I love that medal! After that we have the Shamrock 15K bottle opener, which is my first race with a Meniere's attack. So I see that one and see struggle and success! Next up is the Corvallis Half Marathon - the inaugural race, which makes it special to me, especially since it is was in my college town. And then there's the biggie! The Eugene Half Marathon. The medal is heavy and awesome, but the experience was even more so! And the final one for this collection is the Hippie Chick, which was a first quarter marathon for me, and a good mental success!

I guess I should periodically look back and just remember all of these things. This doesn't even count the huge stack of bibs that don't have medals to go with them. I get so busy looking toward the future that I forget that just a short while ago I was picking out my first 5K to race and starting the C25K program.  I guess I really have done a lot of work and I should be proud of that! I can't wait for my photos to come in the mail because I am ready to get to work on my book!

* * * * * * * *

And now I'd like to leave you with a snippet from my work life. This is an e-mail I received in March from the person referenced at the start of this post. I saved it for a rainy day because it is just so brilliantly terrible. I am NOT editing this in any way. This is a simple copy/paste job for your viewing pleasure. Perhaps this can help explain why I feel like I want to work in a plastic bubble some days!

This Thursday and Friday would you please be able to to afternoon break and mail on Friday because Theresa will gone at 2 on Friday
And would you be able to either do switchboard or take water call  on Friday from 2 on

And would you be able to do mail on Thursday

Karen said she could if you could help her on Friday afternoon
Thank you

**She did NOT get the time off. Was it because she can't form a complete sentence with proper punctuation? Maybe not solely that, but this didn't win her any points!**

Friday, May 13, 2011

Run #4.1 - Half Training Resumes ... Sub 30?

*Reposted since Blogger ate it the first time and still hasn't given it back.*

I was supposed to run. I was excited to do it. Then came 5 o'clock and all motivation was out the window. So then I convinced myself I'd do some sort of arm/upper body work out 'cause I seriously need to. The new plan was to get up in the morning and run to make up for today. And then I started reading my twin's blog. How do I have a twin when I'm an only child? I know, seems odd ... but I swear, we are twins! First it was running twins, but then our normal non-running lives seem to be echoing each other as well. Anyway, I was reading Christina's blog and she indirectly motivated me to just get out there and do my run!

I'm so happy I did!

Before the run I went back to my roots. When I first started running I would dance before I left the house. It got my heart pumping, my body all loosened up. The go-to song was always Tina Turner singing Proud Mary. I liked the slow build up before just letting loose. This time I was Dancing With Myself courtesy of the Gleecast. I had so much fun, I did the song twice! And then I was off!

I ignored the rain, threw on a visor to keep my face dry, and was on my way. Three miles were on tap. Originally I wanted 5, but wasn't sure how my knee was going to hold up. The first mile was fabulous! I freaked when I saw how fast I went. So then I went on for mile two. At 1.89 my knee locked up and I had to pause. It was at this moment when Poker Face came on and I stretched out my leg on the bike path, singing some Lady Gaga at just a normal/loud volume. It was the evening, it was raining. I was alone ... just singing in the rain! And then I continued with my run. Unfortunately I had to pause again because my knee hurt so bad and didn't want to bend. Does anybody know what is going on and how to fix this? I suspect it is from running a half marathon followed by a quarter marathon on all non-flat roads where my left leg was always on a slant. 

Anyway, back to this crazy moment! I was trying to not slack. I was fighting through the pain and just focusing on having good form to hopefully not make my knee worse. I looked down and I was at 3.03. Well, I already passed 3 miles and had some steam left in me, saw that I was still sub-30 and I pushed it. I wanted that sub-30 5K. Hot dog, I did it!!*  29:36 .... exactly one minute faster than my current 5K racing PR.

*I can't officially count this because a) it wasn't in a race, and I would LOVE to get sub-30 in a 5K race and b) I had to pause my Garmin a couple of times while trying to regain function in my knee. BUT, as far as running time goes, I did it! This just gave me the boost I needed, and I am excited to try for it again!

My splits were as follows: 9:30, 9:55, 9:23 and then 7:48 for that final 10th. And to think I did over a mile of this with a limp! Negative splits and a sub-30 running time. I won't complain at all! I'm glad this next round of training started off with such a bang!

Did It Finally Freeze Over?

Brace yourselves. I mean you are probably sitting down, but still, it IS possible to just topple out of your chair or roll off of your bed. Wait, if you aren't in a chair or bed -- where ARE you right now that you are reading this? The toilet? A subway? Cool - I've never been on a subway before. I should bucket list that one!

Okay. I did something so crazy that I am pretty sure hell has frozen over. 

Last night....  I..... wait for it ..... exercised my arms!

WHAT??? I know, crazy right? I mean have you EVER heard me talk about it? No! 

Since I wasn't running - due to the fact that I just did the night before and got my sub-30 5K, which you can't read about right now since Blogger is still not 100% perfect, I decided to take advantage of the nice day! I was home a tad early, so immediately I sent Lady outside to enjoy the sun in her gigantic front yard. Then I put on a running skirt and top - because that's what everybody does when not running, right? - and then went to the shed. After figuring out how to kill the Black Widow that was taunting me I pulled out my lawn mower. My yard is enormous. 45 minutes later, my arms were sore from all the pushing. But did I stop there? No!

Next up, I know it is corny since a lot of you go to actual gyms, I worked my arms in my house. (I'm petrified of gyms.) I put in my EA Sports workout on the Wii and chose the hardest level of workout solely for the arms. My knee is not perfect, so I skipped all lower body. I could NOT handle the "in-line skating" right now.  30 minutes later I could actually feel it in my arms and shoulders. Awesome! I hope to continue this, and also work in some Yoga Booty Ballet - focusing on arms and abs.

And that was my night! It felt great!

This weekend I'll probably be MIA - or drunk status updating on facebook. You can find me at the Country Club walking the golf course all weekend - and squeezing in a 7 mile run as I get one step closer to the Seattle Rock'n'Roll Half Marathon!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Thanks! & A Racing Update

First off I have to give a big thank you to you all for the kind messages and comments on yesterday's post.  You are the best!  And now I feel ready to get back out there, keep my head in check and see what these legs can do. I know I won't be the winner, and that's fine. I guess now I need to figure out what is my ultimate goal and devise a plan to keep me working toward it and some day achieving it!

That racing hiatus I was on? Yeah, that's over. I am skipping the 5K I was looking at, but for good reason. Tonight I resume half marathon training. I can't believe I'm on round 4 of it now! Four? Already? Crazy! And what am I training for?

I gave in and registered yesterday! (Gave in? Ha! I was so excited to do it!) After hearing Stacie talk about it at our blogger dinner, and then realizing that Seattle isn't terribly far from Biker Boy's house, well, it just seemed like THE thing to do! We even got a hotel reserved last night fairly close to the finish line and expo. So I am all set - now I just have to pick out the outfit and do the training! Wow, this puts me at 8 half marathons for 2011 so far (and two already registered for in 2012). Awesome!

And so now how about a little looksie-poo at some of the official race photos from the Hippie Chick!

This is the "Oh my gosh, am I seriously going to throw up AGAIN?" photo. But no, I didn't!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Confession and Acceptance

Hello, my name is R*nda and I'm a slow runner.
[Hi Slow Runner!]

I'm trying to maturely just accept the fact that I am not fast, nor will I ever be what runners would call fast. I'll never be the girl running in just a sports bra and undies. That one time I got first in my age group, that was AWESOME! Months later I am still in disbelief about it, actually. How on earth did I pull that off? I think I was just lucky. I figure the fast runners stayed home versus going out in the cold, very rainy morning. Seriously, that was a rather miserable race - conditions wise. I suppose trying to out run a girl 10 years younger than me that I naively thought was in the 30-34 group probably helped me to that win. I really did push hard. I mean it wasn't just a piece of cake to win that medal that I so badly coveted.

I haven't run a 5K race since New Year's at midnight. I did pretty good. Had the course not been block with walkers for the first mile I could have possibly gotten 3rd in my age group. But alas, I didn't. Now I'm in a whole new territory, that of the long-distance race. As I train for these half marathons I find myself going through so many emotions. Happy, sad, ecstatic, stressed, satisfied, miserable, telling everybody how great I did, wanting to just cry and quit. I've realized that I put a lot of pressure on myself. My whole life I have always done the best I can do. I was always front row, center during dance class because my teacher knew that everybody always looked to me for the steps. In marching band (seriously, why am I admitting this?) others in my section would always know that I knew the direction to be moving, so they'd follow me. I was often "first chair" of the flute section. I was the lead piano player in the Jazz band. When the percussion section needed help, I was the one back there picking up the slack on the chimes, bells and marimba. Senior year I won my only trophy - first place in the FBLA State Skills competition for my awesome skills on an adding machine. I graduated from high school earning the Business Department award. I unanimously won the "best butt" contest in the hot tub during our band trip to Disneyland in 10th grade. (Woohoo!) I swept the City woman's bowling tournament in college. I kicked ass as a Disney cast member, training many people that went on to be really awesome themselves. I've always excelled at whatever I put my mind to. And then came running.

A former band member, and boyfriend, finished a 10K not even 3 minutes after I got my 5K PR. Our races started at the same time. Another friend recently won a 10K race in Eugene. Biker Boy has been outrunning me since our very first run together, and has to slow himself down to stay at my pace. I have this other friend that recently came to me for "coaching" - ha! As if I know anything other than things I've read in books or things that Lesley drilled into me? He, of course, ignored my advice, ran too long, too fast and tore his Achilles something or other. This was in April. Last weekend, at 42 years old, he ran his first race of any kind with minimal training - a half marathon. He did it in 1:53. That is one hour faster than my first half marathon that I trained over a year for. A coworker of mine, also in his forties, got his BQ in Eugene and is aiming to do it again with a faster time next month because he wasn't fully satisfied with his finish time.

And then there's me. Every time I race I have to go to work and have people ask, "How did you place? Did you win? Did you finish up at the top?" Finally, today, when I was told I should go to the big New York marathon I just had to say, "I'm not fast." 
I idolize one of the greatest runners ever. When I hit .4 miles during my runs I realize he's already gone more than a mile by that point. He was just so awesome. All I can do is strive to be a fraction of the person he was. But at the same time I think I have to not beat myself up when I always come in at the middle of the pack or slower. Sure, I had Meniere's attacks during two big races, but I don't want that to be a reason to be slow. Especially now that I feel like the new meds are working better and I'm taking them before races, I have less reason to struggle.

I just need to keep reading I guess. I need to figure out what all that algebra looking speed work stuff means. I certainly want to improve, I just need to figure out how to do it. I think these last races have REALLY made me mentally stronger, and that's a relief. Running the Eugene Half Marathon was probably the best thing to happen to my running. My confidence increased and I learned that I am tougher than I thought. Plus, I met Pre's sister .... and she hugged me when I cried on her shoulder .... oh, and yeah, she e-mailed me last night. Just had to slide that one in here!

So this is just me babbling. Processing the fact that my best this time isn't THE best. I'm giving it my best, but I want MY best to be better.

* * * * * * * *

“A lot of people run a race to see who is fastest. I run to see who has the most guts, who can punish himself into exhausting pace, and then at the end, punish himself even more. Nobody is going to win a 5,000 meter race after running an easy 2 miles. Not with me. If I loose forcing the pace all the way, well, at least I can live with myself.” - Steve Prefontaine

Monday, May 9, 2011

Hippie Chick Quarter Marathon

Coming off the high of the Eugene Half Marathon, I was really looking forward to running the Hippie Chick ... and only running half the distance. I wanted to do this one just for fun. No matter what, I'd get a PR. I've done 10K races before, but this was to be 6.55 miles, which is a first for me. Without a time goal, I was feeling very relaxed about the whole thing!

At 5am, my alarm went off, waking up everyone at Casa de Biker Boy. Everyone would be myself, my mommy and Biker Boy. My mommy was awesome and helped me get my hair into pig tails so I could top off my 'look' for the day. When 6am came, we piled into BB's car and were off to Hillsboro. I'm glad we got there early because I noticed traffic seemed to get pretty backed up the closer it got to race time. We had a great parking spot and sat in the warm car while I pathetically tried to eat half of a bagel.

*Oh, the expo. That was on Saturday. My mom and I went and although I found some things I could buy, the line was crazy. Perhaps I just got there at the wrong time. Packet pick-up was a breeze, and I was finally able to get my hands on the sweatshirt I pre-ordered months ago!*

Back to the race. First stop was the potty. The line got insanely long, and I hear the women started taking over the men's room, too. Makes sense since it IS a women only race and therefore not many males lingering around.

With a couple of minutes until the start I met up with Kim for our pre-race photo! I wished her well and then moseyed on into the unorganized starting chute. I wasn't stressing on getting to the actual start since it was chip timed. I just stayed calm, hit the mat and was on my way. Chaos. It was chaos. So many women, so little space. A police officer on a motorcycle was going up and down the route telling everyone to move right. Right to where?? We were on top of each other with nowhere to go.

Groove is in the Heart came on, and I fell into my rhythm. A perfect way to start off the race and get my mind off of the congestion! My calves started to burn. I just ignored it and ran through it and soon felt okay. The course was very rural. I felt like we were just running through fields and farmland - very peaceful. Unfortunately the on-course spectators were very minimal. After Eugene and all of the people cheering for us, it was kind of lonely to not have many people giving us positive messages.

Four miles in the race changed for me. I had wanted to stay at 11 minute miles or less, but my leg had other plans. My left knee was really hurting after Eugene, so I took it easy between the two races. But then it just started screaming. I was hurting pretty bad, but kept thinking about Katye and her Boston experience. If she could finish a marathon with a torn calf muscle after pleading to be allowed to continue, then I could certainly run the last 2.55 miles. Coming up on 5 miles Britney Spears' Stronger came on. I used that as my anthem and kept moving. A few times I HAD to walk. The pain buckled me over and I could barely move. My leg stopped bending by the time I hit 6 miles. My mental strength was out of control during this race. Instead of walking or pouting, I was fighting as hard as I could.
*Photo courtesy of Kim's daughter!*

After 6.66 miles (according to my Garmin, and I've heard 2 other people say the course ran long) I was crossing the finish line on the football field. I LOVE running on football fields! Somehow I mustered up strength to minimize the limping while I was on that final stretch. Once I crossed, that changed. Walking was incredibly slow and painful. Are you waiting to hear that again I lost it at the finish and got sick? Well too bad, I'm not going to tell you that this time! And I was even prepared with napkins shoved in my bra. They were super sweaty, so I'm glad I didn't need them!

I had a really good time. It was crazy how short a quarter marathon felt after doing 3 half marathons in 2 months! I'm not sure I'll do it again next year, not because of anything bad with the race, I just want fresh medals. Okay, fine. I was seriously disappointed. They kept saying there would pancakes a the finish. I was looking forward to it for months. Pancakes turned into breakfast burritos. Blech. We ended up at Shari's for breakfast where I got French toast instead. Super yummy!

I finished in 1:15:22 and was 46 out of 109 in my division, 340 out of 856 overall. I am thrilled with my time! For comparison, my PR for a 10K is 1:12. Adding to the fact that I think we ran extra, I feel like for being sort of injured I kicked major ass!

Right now I am in a race hiatus. I have nothing scheduled until July 24th. That could change at any given moment, and you'll be the first to know!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Peace, Love and Racing

Last year I was browsing the internet for races to run. I saw one called the Hippie Chick and thought it sounded too cute. Yeah .... sold out! Kim told me that last year it sold out in a few hours and if I wanted to get in this year I had to set an alarm and do it EARLY!! So, while on vacation in Florida, I set my alarm for 3am and registered.

Finally, it is here!

Seeing as I did the Eugene Half last weekend, and given the fact that when I registered I had yet to ever run more than 6.2 miles, I decided to opt for the Quarter Marathon versus the Half. Besides, how often does one get a chance to do a Quarter marathon?  I am really excited. I haven't set any time goals ...yet. I might, but mostly I am just doing this for fun! I've loaded up on accessories to complete my hippie chick outfit and have decided to run nude. Okay, no. Not nude. And not even without my Garmin or iPod. But I AM going to run without my water or iFitness belt. I just want to enjoy 6.5 miles of freedom!

* * * * * *

I'm loving having 2 races back to back. But now I find myself needing more. Yesterday I registered for the Prefontaine Memorial 10K, but sadly have to wait until September for that. Last Sunday I registered for the Portland Rock'n'Roll Half, but sadly have to wait until May 2012 for it. 

I have no races on the schedule that are registered and paid for until July 24th, the Lacamas Lake Half Marathon. This just won't do. I'm 99.99% sure I'll do the Butte to Butte 10K on July 4th. But that still leaves all of June bare. 

Fine, I'll say it. I just want to run one more half marathon between now and July. The only once I've seen looks like hell. Sure, the title says "Roses" in it, but I am NOT trained for constant hills yet, and I just think I wouldn't enjoy the race as much as one should. I'm eye balling a 5K in June .... I can't get my sub-30 if I don't at least register and run, right?

I think August is empty, too. This just won't do.

September will be rad. I've lined up the Disneyland 5K (where Rose and I will steal Mickey's thunder for sure!!), the Disneyland Half Marathon (where I'll get my Coast to Coast medal), the Warrior Dash (where Biker Boy will finally be involved as a participant and not a spectator!) and then the Prefontaine Memorial (where I WILL beat my time from last year!). 

So.... June ... help me out. Any ideas? And not Father's Day weekend - I'll be eating pizza and getting drunk on the golf course.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Fire Marshall Fruit Fly: New Local Hero?

The day started innocently enough. Rustling of papers, drinking of water, rolling of eyes. Shortly after 1pm it all changed. Before we knew it alarms were going off and the building was evacuated.

This was NOT a drill! Everyone needed to stay clear for their safety. But what if someone tried to enter the building because it did not yet have smoke billowing out of it? We needed a door monitor!

Even men with guns couldn't get by the girl in the sweater that was now sitting funny because of her cleavage creating undershirt. Nope! She was a force to be reckoned with. The utmost pillar of safety!  But what do you do when the fire alarm system has been damaged? If a fire breaks out, the alarms won't go off and the fire department won't be notified. Well, you elicit the help of the Fruit Fly! Besides, she wasn't busy after 5 o'clock.....

The challenge was given and I accepted. I vowed to protect the building, nay, the community! This building would NOT burn down on my watch!

It is important to be prepared in any type of situation. As the sole person in charge of a 3 story building, plus basement, I made it my goal to know all of my options and formulate the best plans for any scenario!

I was feeling very confident in my decisions. If a fire was to happen on my watch, the City would be safe!

I was officially on Fire Watch!!  I was taking command, so much so that you might want to call me Captain EO!

Would I be prepared for the fight? Heck yes! I was armed and ready to kick some serious ass!

Big or small, no fire was going to defeat Captain EO!

So, the lesson for today.... Safety First, Be Prepared!

In the end, the building was safe, thanks largely in part to my dedicated efforts! I don't want to brag. I just did my civic duty. I am but a humble servant.

Fruit Fly .... American Hero?

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Why Fruit Fly?

At our blogger dinner last Saturday --- after I met Pre's sister!! --- and the night before the Eugene Half Marathon  --- I was asked "Why Fruit Fly?"

Obviously Fruit Fly is NOT my birthday name, although if it was, then I'd have FFF as initials, and that would be kind of funny. I'd be a Fun Fearless Female! So, why? I will tell you!

Initially my blog started out with a different background and a different name. It had MY name in it. To make a long, scary story short, I had to give it a complete make-over. New address, new background, new name. Same blog, just with all identifying details removed.  In older posts I would use *** in my name to avoid Google searches and Google alerts. I had some unwanted visitors that made me very uneasy, especially given the fact that earlier in my life my mom had to talk with a local police detective about what our options were given the nature of the e-mails I was being sent from this person I avoid.

SO, in order to continue blogging and interactive with the non-stalker types, I needed a new name! 

Clark & Mike with their drinks. FruitFly with nothing. :(
I thought about myself. My interests, hobbies, a way to describe Me!  I have many friends that are boys that like boys. I have friends and family that are girls that like girls. Where I live isn't as open minded and as accepting as I am, so I enjoy displaying my support. Rainbow socks? Why yes, I do wear them .... I have oodles of rainbow accessories ready for any night out - especially a night with the boys where we go watch the boys that dress as girls. (Rainbows = P.R.I.D.E. = Get it?)

My two main men, Mike & Clark, know I am their #1 hag. I seriously adore them so much. They live in Chicago now, so those of you in that area be watching for me to come for a visit and a race some time!  They always call me their hag. That's what I am. I do that roll fabulously!

But there are two other divine men that I love to hang out with when I'm in Vegas or they are in Oregon. The super sexy Alex and Daniel. Alex and Daniel do NOT like the term hag. It isn't pretty enough. They prefer "fruit fly". I agree. It is really cute - just like them!
That's Daniel, my honorary boyfriend, in the black and Alex, his boyfriend, in the red. I actually met Alex first - and he set Daniel and I up on a "date" to watch him perform. It was love at first sight! If you'd like to see them sans make-up and dresses, just scroll down my side bar and you'll see a photo of them. They are too much fun. Any of you running the Vegas RnR Half - join me for their show that weekend. It is a BLAST!!

Anyway ... that's how I came to be the Little Fruit Fly in Rainbow Colored Socks!

And just for fun .... let's have a couple more photos of the men that indirectly gave me my name!
Daniel as Jessica Rabbit
Alex as Celine Dion
**Alex's Cher ROCKS!! If the video doesn't work, will someone please let me know? Thanks!**