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

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Hello From My New iPad!

Hi everybody! How ya doing post Christmas vacation? I'm pretty much not ready to return to work life at all, but that's to be expected.

So updates:
I have been getting caught up on blogs via my awesome new toy, but its not letting me comment. I guess the trusty laptop will have to come out for that again!

MF tried to teach me how to see as I attempted to make my headband for the WDW Marathon. I pretty much suck. There was blood AND I bent the needle!!

I'm ridiculously excited about our new curtains that my mom got us for Christmas. Our bedroom is pitch black now. Love it!!

We have also been moving furniture around and I find it glorious! Sometimes change is good, this is one of those times.

Yesterday MF and I had a spontaneous trip up north to shop. A big score? Batman sunglasses for the marathon! Also I picked up some vacation clothes although we have no idea what of how to pack. Florida is unpredictable already, but when you add my mom to the mix it gets even crazier. So runners beware... It could be snowing and blistering hot all in the same day!

I need to get back to my Glee marathon now. Back soon with more!
Oh! I'm adding a new half marathon to my schedule, too, thanks to Cilley Girl. Exciting!!

*I took the liberty of attaching the first photo taken with my new iPad. I need an intervention!!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Eugene Holiday Half Marathon

Longest bus ride Ever!
It was with great relief and concern that I arrived for the Eugene Holiday Half Marathon.  The relief came from knowing this was the last race before Goofy weekend. It was my nineteenth half marathon, and had the potential to be the coldest and wettest, hence the concern.

I arrived at the finish area with plenty of time to catch the bus back to the start area. The bus ride seemed to take forever, raising my concern about a) the distance and b) surviving the weather. I was pretty confident that this race was only a half marathon, but you know inaugurals go - sometimes there are kinks. I was hoping their big snafu wasn't making us run 20 miles instead of 13.1.  Eventually we arrived with all of our layers in hand at an Applebee's for check-in.  It was nice that we were able to hang out inside until start time. It actually got toasty in there, causing me to only put on 2/3 of my layers until the very last minute.  The negative of hanging out at an Applebee's at 9am is that you can't exactly order yourself some spinach and artichoke dip and a nice adult beverage. But the warmth was appreciated!

Just before 10am I walked out the door, applying another layer, as well as hat, ear warmers and gloves. The weather had been so nasty that I was prepared for all the weather ... all the bad weather that is. Before the start I found myself butting into a nearby conversation about Disney races. I couldn't help it, I've got Goofy Fever!! I also met a blog reader ... Hi Wendy! Before long we were on our way, and for me that meant staying off to the side so that all of the other runners could easily pass me.

My plan for this was to treat it just as it is planned to be, a slow, long training run. I had to just set my ego aside and watch others go by and not let it bother me. I have to admit it was hard, but soon I was happy everyone else was ahead and I could just relax, enjoy conversation with Man Friend and be thankful that the weather was great! I ended up ditching my gloves and nearly took off one of my three shirts!

The flat was so flat that when there were some hills I didn't even flinch and just continued on my way. I stuck to a run/walk ratio since that's the plan for Goofy. Also, MF is on doctor's orders to continue with light running and walk breaks so as to not injure his spine anymore, but keeping up with the moving to help him out. So on with our intervals we went, and how excited were we at the first water stop when we saw not only was there water, but also Gatorade, oranges and Clif Shot Blocks! I grabbed MF and I each a pack of shots, a cup of water and continued on my way.  

It was at the second water stop that we discovered this inaugural's mandatory snafu. Water, or shall I say lack there of. I was handed a very small cup of water and told it was the LAST cup. MF didn't get any, and the bit I got barely wet my mouth. Bummer. But you know what we DID get? More Clif Shot Blocks!

Shortly after that stop I was on this very long straight stretch along a two-lane highway. With no shoulder to speak of I had to make sure to not let myself slide into the ditch or drift into the road. I closed the gap on a couple of runners, but did get passed. I was pretty certain I was dead freaking last at that point!

The next stop had water. Hallelujah!! AND Shot blocks!!

Return of the bloody shoe, damn fat toe!
At mile 8.2 that my foot felt funny. My sock was strange. I knew that feeling. I looked down and my hot pink shoes were now RED and hot pink. Well hello there, fresh blood stain! Oh well, I must continue along!  When we got to the next water stop we learned we weren't dead last ... there was a walker somewhere way in the back. Dammit. I actually had visions of coming in the very final runner. Oh well, I must continue along! But I didn't continue before getting ample orange Gatorade, water to wash down the vanilla Clif shot I had taken and a gingerbread man cookie. Did you know if you mix all of those things together and then burp it tastes like a creamsicle? Now you know!

So much for the blood, hello mud!
Imagine my surprise when I actually caught up with runners and started passing people! I was continuing along at a steady pace, but I flat out stopped and socialized at two water stops and let MF take a potty break. All of that I was now passing?? Crazy! I'm telling you, Jeff Galloway knows his schtuff! 

My leg started bugging me so I did back off a hair, but not all that much. My goal is to not get injured before Goofy, so more walk breaks were fine by me. At the final mile marker is when the rain started. Not even real rain by Oregon standards, just a mist in the air really. I was happy to almost be done. We crested the final hill and dropped down to the park at the reservoir where the finish line was. I saw a volunteer directing us off the path and got the direction to follow the flags. 

Um, yeah ... we followed the flags that would be in nice grass if it were summer, but this is December - it was a mud fest. Now I just wanted to get through the last tenth without falling or breaking anything. It was a sloppy finish filled with laughter, but I did it! 

I saw pizza, bread, oranges and beer at the finish. All I wanted was to get some photos with my cool blue glass medal, get to the Jeep, change clothes and head into town for warm food in a dry location... so that's what we did! It was a really fun time, we lucked out and honestly, considering the slacking off I did my finish time wasn't horrible for me ... and I beat 11 people!!! Woo hoo! Oh - and those Shot Blocks? Our ultimate race goal that we created mid-race was to accumulate 13 ... one for each mile. And by golly, we did it!

Half Marathon #19!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Run 2.??? - Screw It!

My running is so sporadic that I'm just over logging it in my blog ... for now. I can only think about Goofy and writing about runs now and then is just so blah to me at this point.

I can say that I recall a couple of really great runs in this last week. We did a five miler and it felt pretty awesome! The chill in the air seems to be helping me. I guess it is motivating me to keep moving to stay warm and get done faster. I had another great run, but much shorter.... a whopping 2 miles. We warmed up inside, went outside and then realized it was freezing. No joke, I mean I think we had some snow flakes come down on us. The run felt fabulous though. I was loving it!

So unless it is super fabulous or super horrible I'm probably going to not bother tracking the rest of my puny marathon training. But I'm not ditching running or writing about it. Just between now and Goofy I can't keep up. My mind is busy with Dopey costumes (that's THREE race outfits!), wedding, Christmas, running, wedding, packing, Vegas, wedding... and now ....

Damn you, runDisney. Why do you keep coming up with things that I cannot say no to?  Looks like I'll be getting another Coast to Coast medal this year because I just can't pass up on the first ever Disneyland 10K followed by the Half. Anyone else smell a Team Jam reunion??  Man Friend and I have already been staking out hotels and are loving his military discount for that and park tickets!  

I started packing, sort of, for Goofy weekend tonight. Race costumes are being set aside, and I think I have all the pieces for all three races now. I won't officially pull out the suitcase until after Christmas though. But it's coming up so soon, it will be hard to resist!

We are watching the Fugitive right now. Tommy Lee Jones looks so young. Makes me want to watch Men in Black now. Ooh, maybe I'll put in Toy Story. I want to do some Disney movie watching to study up for the big trip.  And also can we talk Jersey Shore? I pretty much watched all of the marathon last weekend leading up to tomorrow night's final episode. I'm sad. Dammit, why?? Why did I get myself hooked on this stupid show? I'm going to miss them. Ugh.

That's all. I'm freezing. I need to go sit in front of the heater.
I might run tomorrow. Oh, and I have a half marathon on Saturday. I'm officially on Snow Watch 2012.

Thursday, December 13, 2012


When I do stuff like this at work it really makes me day!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Run 2.13, 2.14, 2.15 - Catch Up

I caught my dog sleeping on her back, under the covers
completely passed out. Her grandparents spoil her so  much!!
Run 2.13 was the Reindeer Run half marathon. As far as long training runs go, it was pretty darn nice! I can't stop raving about how great everybody was and how we lucked out with the weather. One of my slowest half marathons, but some of the most positive experiences and memories came from it!

Run 2.14 was 3.1 miles in the evening after work. Not 3, but 3.1 in honor of the 3 year anniversary of my first 5K.  My only goal, aside from not falling down due to running in complete darkness, was to run faster than I did during that first race. No sweat! Goal accomplished.

Run 2.15 was my "long" run. I'm a complete and utter slacker, so my long run was five whopping miles. It actually was a pretty great run after I had a mile 2 mental breakdown. I think I'm just so ready for Goofy to be here after thinking about it so much. Forget that I'm not training for it ... but dammit, I'm ready!!

So let's talk Goofy ... again.  "Costumes" for each of the three races have been finalized. Pieces have been ordered and we are ready to dress up and have a little gold ol' fashioned Disney fun!

Also along the lines of ordering, wedding supplies ... I have gobs of them arriving all the time. Today alone we had THREE packages waiting for us when we got home. Tomorrow my new prized possession of all decorations shows up and I cannot wait to see it!! It is killing me to not dish the details, but trust me, this is going to be THE decoration I can't top!

Reindeer, hat, wine & a yet to be opened gift ... all part
of our holiday sweater party dominance. We are Tew Legit!!
What else? My cats are getting closer and closer. Millicent keeps creeping up on Tinker Bell and sniffing her. They even touched noses once. I was such a happy mommy. I like seeing my girls get along and get used to each other more and more.

2Fish and I went to our first of three sweater parties this weekend. There were four prizes to win -- we took home 3. Boom! Team Tew Legit knows how to do costumes and outfits, and apparently we know how to dominate at Bunco, whatever the hell that game is.

Goofy nightmares are increasing. Usually I am having difficulty getting TO the races. I'm always so relieved when I wake up and realize it is all just a dream. Makes me wonder, will I sleep at all during Goofy weekend??

Okay, that's all for now I think. Just babbling. I have a killer headache, which we think is from not having any caffeine all day. I think I'll grab my little posse and head to bed! 

OOOHHHH!!!!  I closed down the mall by shopping in the jewelry store until they locked up all the merchandise. I went to go browse and look at necklaces to wear at my wedding .... yeah, necklace, wedding bands for myself and a band for MF were all taken care of. Yippee!!!!!!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Reindeer Run Half Marathon

On Saturday, December 1st in St. Helens, Oregon I ran my 18th half marathon, the Reindeer Run. I can’t say enough how spectacular ALL of the volunteers were! From the people giving us our bibs to the men handing me prizes at the finish line to the people done with their role and still lingering to show support and cheer, every single volunteer was great. I’ve never felt so appreciated. During the course the volunteers would be genuinely thanking us for participating, and in turn I was genuinely thanking them for putting on such a lovely event for me to participate in! So let’s back it up now and start at the beginning!

I guess for me the start is in the middle of the night while sleeping at my future brother in law’s guest room. I was awoken to the sound of pouring rain and a terrible wind storm. I kept thinking, “will I need to be that person in the garbage bag?” and “Should I get up early to go to the store for rain gear?” Once up for the day I looked outside and it wasn’t all that bad, but still dreary. Oh well, what can ya do? Man Friend and I excitedly put on our Christmas apparel and hopped in the car for the “long” drive just around the corner to the church that was putting on the race. We quickly parked and hurried in to get our bibs. Inside it was glorious! Christmas trees, music inside and outside, and a roaring fire… Heaven!! I decided to go grab my food and water and just hang out by the fire stretching and enjoying the atmosphere. Just before 8:30 we went outside to start the race.

The gun goes off and I just kind of laughed and stretched a bit. The field was so small and I was certain I would be the back of the pack, so I may as well not push to try to get swept up in the initial burst. When I began running it was really nice! Weather-wise it was perfect and dry, I actually had to borrow some free expo sunglasses I had given MF earlier this year. We left the church area and ran along a main road until turning into a neighborhood and farm land. I kept hearing people on my tail (I don’t REALLY have a tail, mind you). I pushed harder than I wanted to since this really was just a training run for me and not a race. But I didn’t want to let these girls pass. Finally I succumbed and said to just let them go, that I knew we’d pass them again. And so there they went… and there I was … THE very last runner in the race. Not a soul behind me. Que sera sera!

I decided on intervals of .4/.1 since they’ve been working so well for me in the past. What hadn’t been working well was my stomach. Soon the ratio was “run when I can and walk when I’m about to vomit”. Great. I think after 4 miles I was officially not last. I did pass those two girls again, as well as another couple. My goal became to stay ahead of them, regardless of how sick I was feeling. *I never did let them pass or even get close to me! About 2 hours into the race I was finally NOT sick and I was ready to run it on home … Hello, Marathon Injury. Fortunately my spirits were high because if they weren’t I’d have been miserable. My leg was hurting pretty bad so we realized we had to walk more just to save myself for Goofy. I wasn’t out to impress anyone or prove anything, so I had that in my favor at least.

The course was very rural. I had to keep avoiding road kill consisting of frogs and mice. I saw some ginormous dogs that I thought were fake at first. A volunteer had a dog in his hands, so I did make a slight detour around mile 10 to go nuzzle my face into his. So sweet! Hilly, another word to describe this course. The middle was flat for the most part, but to get to that point you had to go down and then up, both ways! At least it was an out and back, so the return trip wasn’t any surprise to me!

Coming into the finish I was babying my leg again, just like during the marathon. Once I saw the finish line though, I decided to run it in. And MF, dang it, he tried to keep up, so then I’d have to speed up. Somehow he finished a second before me even though I crossed before him, guess we didn’t start in sync. Next time it’s MINE! We barely crossed the finish and ‘Here Comes Santa Claus’ started playing – perfect given MF’s attire for the day! A volunteer handed me a bottle of water and a package in bubble wrap, which I thought was my medal. Then I saw MF get a medal on a lovely lanyard. Huh? Then they gave him bubble wrap, and soon I got a lanyard. Turns out we not only got really nice medals, we also got reindeer Christmas ornaments!

Inside there was an assortment of fruit, bagels, donut holes and coffee. People were mingling and waiting for free massages. I decided to people watch, sing and just enjoy what felt like a big accomplishment. Upon learning that this was my 18th half marathon, one of the volunteers even asked MF if we had any advice on ways to improve. All we had was to put one more water stop at the turn around … I kid you not, I was about to put my face in the ditch and drink the water than was flowing. Gross, but I was THAT thirsty!

But really this was a top notch race! I don’t even go to church but said to MF that if I lived near St. Helens I’d probably have to go at least once just because everybody was so welcoming and nice. I’ll never stop raving about it. Oregonians and SW Washington peeps, if you ever need a December half, I suggest the Reindeer Run!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Goofy and Wedding Talk - Shocker.

I am suddenly ridiculously excited about going to Walt Disney World and Marathon/Goofy Weekend. I stared at the course map for the full yesterday and it doesn’t scare me at all. This will be my third time doing the half marathon course, so I know I can do that with no problem at all, especially since I plan on “Team Jam”ming it by goofing off, laughing, doing cartwheels, getting pictures and having non-stop fun! Looking at the full I see that yeah, there is that stretch after the race track as you head toward the back of Animal Kingdom … that could be not as thrilling. But considering Animal Kingdom was my home for 3 years I know that as I go down Bear Island Road and get closer I’ll be picking up on the smell and getting excited to be in my old stomping grounds, so for me it will be full of anticipation and might help pull me along into that second half of the course. Osceola Parkway – I feel that stretch is notorious and people dread it. I actually don’t mind it. I’ve raced on it twice now and had no problems. I guess I like that I get to run where I used to drive all the time. And you do get to see some sights, so it’s not like you’re just doing some local rural half marathon where it is farm land after farm land. And all of that stretch leads you to this mysterious “Mile 20 Spectacular”! What is it?? Will we ever learn? Do we have to wait until Mile 20 to find out? I’m loving the build-up of it all. I can’t wait to see what it is!! And from there you just have the run back to the Studios, which really isn’t that bad – I mean if I could do it at midnight in 100 degrees plus humidity, we can handle it at the full!! – and once in the Studios it is non-stop goose bumps and cheering fans all the way to the finish line! Fellow marathon and Goofy runners, we CAN and WILL do this and we WILL have a complete BLAST!!! 

Confession: My suitcase from Tower of Terror weekend is still on my spare bed. It still has things from the luncheon we crashed in it (I’ve been sleeping in my t-shirt lately, Abby!), as well as hotel soaps and costume pieces from each of the 3 outfits I created. SO …. I guess I need to unpack so I can pack! I haven’t even started my official Excel list. I need to get on that! Run wise I have one race left before Goofy, and that will be half marathon #19 … all with the intent to have my 20th half be the WDW half marathon the day before the 20th anniversary of the marathon! 

Wedding talk time! I’ve purchased some fun things for my lovely bridesmaids and even finished accessorizing them. I still need to settle on the perfect necklace that I’ll wear that day. I’ve narrowed it down to a couple at two different stores. One says “sweet romance” (not literally) and the other says “Sin City romance”. So I think I need to see them in person and decide which speaks to me. Also along the jewelry lines, I’m thinking it is time to find MF’s wedding band and figure out the wedding band for my ring. I’ve already got quite a rock on this finger, so I can’t have something totally weighing me down, but also it can’t be invisible. Obviously! ;) The boys have their outfits done – I think. I’m not sure if the Best Man got his measurements or not. I need to best the Groom about that one. The boys DON’T have their outfits done. Never mind. I need to finish accessorizing them. Also this weekend I staked out the building where my local reception will be held. While crafters were hoping I’d look at their crap and want to buy it I was busy staring at the ceiling figuring out where my disco balls will go and where my “red carpet entrance” for the guests will be. Ooh – I should get a red carpet! Remind me of that down the road, ‘kay? And then there is reception decorations. We’ve been having fun using Black Friday and Christmas sales to buy things we plan on using. The looks we’ve gotten with some of our purchases has been quite funny! 

Also in the works is my ugly sweater. We decided to have an ugly sweater competition at Christmas this year. I can’t say anything about mine because there might be spies trying to find out what mine looks like. Top Secret!! Let’s just say I’m upping the ante a little with mine and not putting any limits on myself. 

So that’s what’s up in my world. Still not running as much as I should, but at least I’m feeling more like myself every day. I am actually excited about things again and wanting to not be such a total lazy ass! 

Up next I’ll have my race report for this past weekend’s race in what might be the friendliest city in all of Oregon!