"Don't let the fat chick beat you"?

I have been racing for about 5 years now. I am not a typical runner or even triathlete. I fight with serious medical conditions every step of the way, but each step makes me stronger. I have two boys both with special needs and I have learned to chalk that up to making me stronger as well.

It is with sad heart that I must report that lupus has won the battle this year, but trust me when I say the war is far from over! My racing days are not over by any stretch of the imagination. This is just a minor setback that will make me stronger.

Friday, May 28, 2010

It is the VETERAN


It is the VETERAN,
not the preacher,
who has given us freedom of religion.

It is the VETERAN,
not the reporter,
who has given us freedom of the press.

It is the VETERAN,
not the poet,
who has given us freedom of speech.

It is the VETERAN,
not the campus organizer,
who has given us freedom to assemble.

It is the VETERAN,
not the lawyer,
who has given us the right to a fair trial.

It is the VETERAN,
not the politician,
Who has given us the right to vote.

It is the VETERAN

who salutes the Flag,

It is the VETERAN
who serves under the Flag,


We can be very proud of our young men and women in the service no matter where they serve.
Bless them all!!!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a United States federal holiday observed on the last Monday of May. Formerly known as Decoration Day, it commemorates U.S. men and women who died while in the military service.
Monday is Memorial Day, sadly most people see it as a day away from work when everyone has barbeques and stores have huge sales.
I spent time not only in the military, but in a war zone. I have lost friends, I have friends who have gone back numerous times in the past six years. My father is a Purple Heart recipient and still has shrapnel in his back from Viet Nam. Both of my grandfathers served (one was in the US Army, the other in the Australian Army). I know I have at least one uncle who has served. To me Memorial Day is more than just a day away from work.
This Monday please take a moment and remember all those fallen Service Members. Just as an FYI there have been 4,400 killed in action in Iraq so far and 1,085 in Afghanistan. That isn’t even looking at all the previous wars. And frankly, I do not care if you agree or approve of what is going on in Iraq of Afghanistan, I don’t care if you think we should be over there or not. Please remember that these men and women belong to someone, they are loved by someone, they are our sons and daughters, they are mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters and friends. Please take a moment this Memorial Day to show your respect for their sacrifice.

This soldier is someone I proudly served with. He was an incredible guy, he was funny, happy go lucky, just an all around great guy. I hope his family has even the smallest idea of what he meant to those who met him. Please note I said was, SSG Blake Harris died on 15 Mar 07.

NEWS RELEASES from the United States Department of Defense No. 299-07 IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 17, 2007 Media Contact: (703) 697-5131/697-5132 Public/Industry(703) 428-0711
DoD Identifies Army Casualties
The Department of Defense announced today the death of four soldiers who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. They died March 15, 2007. in Baghdad, Iraq, when an improvised explosive device detonated near their unit during combat operations.They were assigned to the 1st Squadron, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.
Killed were: Staff Sergeant Blake M. Harris, 27, of Hampton, Georgia Staff Sergeant Terry W. Prater, 25, of Speedwell, Tennessee Sergeant Emerson N. Brand, 29, of Rigby, Idaho Private First Class James L. Arnold, 21, of Mattawan, Michigan

During my time in Iraq I had to inform a friend who was deployed with me that the man he looked up to, the man he had the utmost respect for had been killed on Christmas Eve. I heard CSM Eric Cooke’s name mentioned so many times and it was always how respected he was; how kind, yet firm he was.

This is what Memorial Day is all about.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Getting close

We are now within the two week window and I am sooooo excited! After hearing the news about lupus on Thursday I went to my local running store for some retail therapy, I spent way more than I should have, but I felt a little better!
I have told myself I can run one song out of every mile. I have to take it easy, my feet are still acting up and my knee isn’t the happiest joint right now, but it isn’t to bad. My doc told me if I have any hope of running my November race, I had BETTER take it easy during this one. I am worried about the whole hydration issue (I need to be careful that I don’t over hydrate, but I can’t afford to under hydrate either). The most girly concern I have right now is what to wear! I will wear my CW-X running tights, they make my legs feel so much better! But I can not go out in public with just them on my bottom half! While I was at the running store I picked up two skirts, a top, a pair of running socks (I only do long runs in toe socks), a two flashing lights (since Charlie loves waking me up so darn early, this just makes us that much more visible). One of the skirts was Moving Comfort (I think, could be wrong!), New Balance with “Colorado Running Company” written on the butt. So, now my choices are…
my Nike Carpi with Skirt

New Balance (might be to short for me to be happy in)

This kind of looks like the other skirt (except mine is brown)

SkirtSports (they don’t put drawstrings in their skirts, which does cause some issues),

or something else all together.

Friday, May 21, 2010


Ever have one of those years that all you want to do is climb into bed and refuse to move until next January 1st? For me, that is this year has been one of those and for good measure I might just hide in my bed until the end of next year too!
Last fall my feet started hurting so bad is was excruciating to walk at times. I called my doctor and she gave me the go ahead to contact a podiatrist. He informed me I had Metatarsalgia, told me no weight baring activities and sent me through 6 weeks of pain and torture, I mean physical therapy. After 6 weeks of PT I was still having major problems, he tested me for Rheumatoid Arthritis. That is when I became a vegetarian (there is an enzyme in a lot of meats that can cause inflammation). The test came back negative, at which point I think the doctor stopped listening to me which resulted in me not listening to him anymore. My feet still remind me they aren’t happy, sometimes they downright hurt, other times they are just a little tender. During this same time, my knee started acting up. Great! Now I am a hypochondriac.
After good hard workouts my blood sugar would crash (or that’s what it felt like), but it was always wait until I was done. A few weeks ago, it happened during a workout and it was one of the worst ones yet. So I figured it was time to go to the doc. Since I am not a huge fan of going to the doc, I went with a shopping list! She said she only had time for a few items (which is understandable). So I hit on my knee, my weight, and something else, I don’t remember. I walked out of there with the name of an ortho doc, a blood sugar tester (she wanted to know how low I was going), a lab slip for a full work-up and I am sure there was something else, but I can’t remember what it was. Within a week I was seeing the ortho and had an MRI scheduled. Lab tests came back, thyroid was well out of normal range. My doc had scheduled a follow up for six weeks to go over all my numbers and see how my thyroid was doing.
MRI showed cartilage behind my knee cap was going away (but that is not where the pain was). Doc told me to stop running, when he realized that was not happening he told me what I needed to do to protect my knee (I am very good about listening to that advice).
Yesterday I was in the doc’s office and the first question she asked was ‘does anyone in your family have a connective tissue dieses?” I had no idea what she was talking about, then I reminded her that no one in my family likes to go to the doc so, no idea! Then she started in on the lupus. My blood test was positive, the physical issues I have been having, the ‘over hydration’ I suffer, and the list goes on, makes her pretty sure it is lupus that has been wrecking havoc on my body. Now I go back in 4 – 6 months to see what my number is (in about a year they had doubled). I have to watch my sun exposure (I love being in the sun; my car has a sunroof, the weather is getting beautiful so I drive with as many window as possible opened; my boys love going to Elitch Gardens during the summer so much we have to get season passes…). Obviously it is something that will have to be dealt with, but STOP! This year has been Kiddo #1 hitting the ER twice (first time was because Kiddo #2 found him face down unresponsive in his room – turned out it was a seizure), Grandfather dying, Kiddo #2 having a serious episode, etc. No more, please?

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Why am I up and running at 4:30?

Coach Charlie was nice this morning. He got me up at around 4:20 and then took me for a 4.16 mile run. I mean most fur coaches would make their people sleep but Coach Charlie is not like most fur coaches!
My alarm went off at 4:00, Charlie came charging in, but I wasn’t done sleeping yet. So I hit snooze, I know he stood there and stared at me for a moment before leaving again. 4:10 BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! Where is that stupid.. Oh! Found the stupid snooze button, crap, Charlie is back. ‘Charlie, give me one more beep.’ At which point he made himself comfortable on my bed (Carin was somewhere else). BEEP! Charlie got between and the alarm, he was not going to let me roll over again! So I sat up, turned the light on and Charlie did his normal good morning routine, sitting next to me/on me, leaning up against me flip his head back to say hi. Charlie is still learning the meaning of ‘move, I gotta pee’, he still thinks that means get even more comfortable. Once I get back from the bathroom I have both Charlie and Carin sitting on my bed staring at me. Trust me, getting dressed with this going on, not easy (I had my running stuff on my bed. I finally got dress, Charlie has his flashing collar on (hey, it was still dark out!), I had my reflective vest on (my mom was asking me yesterday if I wore something reflective when I go out for this dark runs; yes mom, both Charlie and I make sure we are visible and even though we have the little cross walk guy telling us we can cross, we check traffic). We had a nice uneventful run, we saw two whole people! Once we got to the top of our street, I took Charlie off leash (as usual), and we started running down the street. Usually he is all over the place, but never behind me, today if I put my hand down next to my side, it would be on his head! I kept telling him ‘good with me’. I have no idea why he decided it was necessary to run right next to me, but today he did. As soon as we got home, I woke up my boys (my sister was about to come up and wake them up, but I beat her!). After my boys were up (trust me, they were not awake) I heard Kiddo #2 screaming at Charlie to get out of the tub and to stop drinking his bath water.
Long story short – nice cool run, felt great! I need to turn my 4am alarm off tomorrow morning or Charlie will think it is time to go! Tomorrow is a rest day.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Coach Charlie

This week of training has been going great! Yesterday morning Coach Charlie and I went for a very enjoyable early morning run (with a pace of 11:44). I have to say the best part of going out that early is no one can see what you are wearing (assuming there are other insane people) so you can go out in a green shirt and red pants! Sadly, my iPod crashed about half way into the run, but I had my Garmin and the birds were singing, so I was good. This morning Coach Charlie heard my alarm go off and he was on my bed staring at me with the attitude of ‘well mommy? Are you getting up?’ Sadly, today I was not. Last night Carin accidently stepped on my foot while I was on my back (my foot has issues anyway), I almost went through the roof! It hurt so bad. It is feeling better now, so I might try to take him out this afternoon. During lunch I will do my pre-weight cardio on the elliptical machine, just in case. Yes, Carin was very apologetic when she realized I was screaming because of her. San Diego is right around the corner, because of training issues, I plan on running 5 minutes out of every mile. I have 7 hours to complete the race, so I am not to worried. I plan on wearing my CW-X running tights under another pair of bottoms. I am not sure if I will wear my Nike running skirt with capris or if I will wear just regular capris or a SkirtSport running skirt. I might pack them all and decide the night before the race. Oh! Saturday I did the Incline again, I went all the way up and ran most of the way down the trail. I am still struggling on the way up, but I am getting better. I did notice that my blood sugar does spike after a good workout, but within about 20 minutes it drops at least 30 points. Yes, I will be speaking to the doctor about that tomorrow.

I think this was when I was getting started.
I love the Incline becuase of the view at the top, this was the view at the top on Saturday :(

Who in their right mind would do the Incline on a day like this? HEY! I think I see my car, maybe if I had waited valet would have brought it to me!!!!
This was my favorite picture!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Great workout; ready for the weekend! :)

Treadmill it was! I did my normal nice 10 minute warm-up. Then I did a mile at a comfortable pace, Mile #2 walk 1 minute/run (not jog) 1 minute, Mile #3 – back to my comfortable pace and every other tenth I would up it to a faster pace. Then my 5 minute cool down. Felt great!
After I got done getting changed I realized I was a little shaky so I checked my blood sugar, it was 140! I have never been that high. After 20 minutes I was down to the 120s, but I was shocked that it went that high. I think I will start checking before and after workouts for a while to see what is going on.

Finally Friday

This week I have been pretty good at getting my workouts in. Wednesday I didn’t make the second part of my workout, but I will be hitting the gymlet today for an easy workout. I am not exactly sure if I will hit the Elliptical or the treadmill, I guess I will figure that out once I get down there.
The Slim Fast thing is still going really well. I am really paying attention to what I am eating. I am not being fanatical about it, but I am keeping an eye on everything. They say to stay around 1200 calories; I think I am closer to 1500. I do also keep in consideration my activities for the day. If I am doing a longer/harder training session I will consume more calories.
Assuming the weather can hold up this week, I am going to try to take another trip up the Incline – I would like to make it all the way to the top this time. I don’t care how long it takes me, I just want to get up to the top for the view. Sunday I have an 8 miler on the books, fingers crossed!
Oh! And the 30 day challenge…
Stairs (going up once and coming down twice) – doing great!
Sodas – not a problem (still drink Canada Dry, is that counted as a sode?)
Starbucks – I am quite happy with my Grande!

OH! My Nike+ finally connected! My Mini is doing a mjor happy dance!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


The past two weeks, once again, life has interfered with training. Two weeks ago was my last good training session outside. A few years ago I picked up a Garmin and I love it! 28 May, my hill training went right out the window. Last week I was sick, then kiddo locked my keys in the car (not intentionally), Thursday I got a gentle hill session in, but I couldn’t find my Garmin so I had to believe what my iPod was telling me (it was close according to mapmyrun.com). Saturday I did the Incline with no electronics (expect my phone, just in case), yesterday I did my soccer practice run with just my iPod. Today at work a mass email as sent out that someone had turned in a sports watch and the owner can claim it at the reception desk, jokingly I sent the front desk an email asking if it was a Garmin, then I strolled up there, I hadn’t chatted with her all day! I, again jokingly, asked her if it was a black Garmin. She pulled it out and believe it or not, it was my watch! Before I officially claimed it, I checked the history and confirmed it was in fact my watch. We all know Garmins are not cheap, so the fact that someone turned in a knowingly expensive watch really impresses me.
Oh, and my run today, I think I had my mid morning snack to late in the day morning. I had nothing for my run. I was supposed to do 5 miles, sadly I fought to pull off a 2 miler. I think I will chalk it up to being a gloomy day outside (always seem to have blah runs on gloomy days [might need to get miles in at the gym where the treadmill doesn’t face the window]). I was doing sprints and at a speed I should have had no problem maintaining for two minutes I could not get a good deep breath after the 3 round (might also be recovering from the yuck I had last week still).

I run to clear my mind, not clutter it worse!

The reason I started running is to clear my mind and relax. Last night was Kiddo #2 soccer practice (by the way he scored one of the goals this weekend and I am sooooooo proud of him) so it was run time. I still hate, I mean love, those hills around the practice field (I think I did better this time than I have in the past). Instead of clearing my mind, I think it just got 10 times more cluttered. Luckily it has nothing to do with my kiddos. It is great when someone touches your life, it is not so great when years later you are still affected by that person and parts of you wants to be and parts of you want to move on. Well, I have 5 miles on the books today maybe I will have better luck.On the training/diet front… Yesterday I got both workouts in and feel great! I did a 1.5 mile warm-up and two rounds of circuit weight training (my muscles had no idea what I was doing to them). Then during soccer practice I did a very hilly “easy” 3.35 miles. The whole dieting gig – well, this weekend I was HORRIBLE! Between getting Japanese food on Saturday and the Mother’s Day brunch on Sunday my calories were shot, but that is ok. I am back on track now and I will get there eventually.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Smoking on the Incline!

Saturday, a non-race day, I was up and out of bed before 5! I got dressed and out the door I went. The sun was still trying to figure out how to get out of bed, it was quiet and peaceful out. I got the Incline parking lot and was pleasantly surprised to see it was more than half empty. I got out, put my shoes on (I can’t go out the door with running shoes on or Charlie will get out the door and expect to go for a run!) and slowly started up the trail. I had to take it VERY slow. #1) I was still recovering from being sick and #2) this was my first time out this year. Once I got on the Incline (boy was I huffing and puffing) and stopped to enjoy the view. Please talk about going to your happy place, well, I have two and that is one of them! I would go 100 steps and take a breather, like I said, nice and slow. For the first time, I actually saw someone smoking on the incline! Turns out he was a reservist who had been activated and was trying to get back in shape. When I was a smoker, I was told by a doctor that while smoking you lungs will open up (it is to get as much of the chemicals in as possible) so I figured that why he was doing it. Nice guy, we chatted and he made it half way up! Anyway, I had planned on going all the way up, but again, this was my first time out this year so I went half way and ran down Barr Trail. At one point on the trail, there is a short little steep up hill and when I ran up it, I think my claves started to sing! It stretched them out nicely. I got to the bottom and felt great. I plan on heading out again next weekend, assuming my hip flexors forgive me! They are still a little sore today!

As far as Mother’s Day… I am sure my mother had a wonderful day! Since Mother’s Day is all about my mom, my sister and I are celebrating our Mother’s Day this weekend!

Friday, May 7, 2010


As most endurance athletes can attest to, we are very fickle about the products we use (right down to our underwear sometimes). I personally am an Under Armour, Nike, CWX type of gal. Now, when I first started racing 3 years ago I bought myself a pair of Oakleys. Over the past 3 years I have abused them every way possible and they kept loving me and treated me well. Sadly, I recently put them into retirement (the lenses are scratched beyond all get out, the frame has been bent a million and one times). I bought myself a pair of Half Jackets when I walked out of the store I put them on and fell in love. Last night I did my hill training (good thing about living here, no matter where I go, I have no issues finding a hill!) and the weather was a little off (springtime in the Rockies) the glasses were great. They did fog up when I finally finished, but I did not have any issues while I was running.

As far as the run went last night. I did 3 miles, still trying to take it a little easy. I did my warm up with Kiddo #2 and then went to hills and then a nice cool down. I wanted to take a picture of the weather I was running in and apparently Kiddo #2 wanted me to take a picture of him. Don’t ask!

Due to insane Thursday nights, I think we are going to officially make Thursday “Subway night”. I am working with Kiddo #1 on how to make better decisions (I do not want him to fight the same weight battle as everyone else in my family). So we looked to see what the lower calorie subs were and he picked a Black Forrest Ham and put spinach on it. I was so proud of him. Ok, he also had 2 cookies, but we are not going to change him over night.
Tomorrow I am planning on hitting the incline in place of my “35 minute fartlek” run, no iPod, no Garmin, nothing. I am just going to go and enjoy a good, hard workout. Sunday, my Mother’s Day gift to myself will be a nice run before going to a Mother’s Day brunch for my mom (I really do hate brunches).

Thursday, May 6, 2010


No, I am not getting married (I am still holding out for my Mr. Perfect), I am talking about meal replacement shakes. I am leaving for San Diego in 28 days (not that I am counting) and this weight is NOT coming off. So I figured I would give Slim Fast a shot. The whole idea behind it is a shake for breakfast, a healthy snack (100 calories), a shake for lunch, a healthy snack (100 calories), a “sensible” meal for dinner (500 calories) and a healthy snack (again, 100 calories) total daily caloric intake is approximately 1200 calories. Now, I am still drinking my Starbucks which is about 180 calories (not counted in any of the snacks above), if I am doing a tough workout I will have an additional snack (such as string cheese) and not stress about it. My water intake is just fine (I have to pee every 5 minutes!). On a good note I have become very meticulous with my dinners, the other night I made “Mexican Cornbread” and I made sure I measured out everything so I knew exactly how much I could have. I had two muffins and 2 servings of broccoli and cheese (my biggest weakness)! And I stayed within my allotted amount of calories. The thing I am worried about is on Sunday we are taking my mom to a Sunday brunch (I never like those) I need to make sure I am very good (and get a long hard run in before we go!).
The last week has been a little rough, Kiddo #2 had a serious issue (medical) and that put a cramp in a lot of plans. Then I got sick (laryngitis due to all my coughing). Last night Kiddo #2 locked my keys in my car and I did not have my spare anywhere near me (we were at Grandma’s house), so the workouts have been a little slim, but when I am able to get them in they are very enjoyable. I got my lunch time workout in and it felt sooooooo good. I did a 10 minute sllllooooowwwww walk on the treadmill as a stretch, then I did 1 mile as a “warm-up” at a slow but comfortable pace (I am still coughing a little, not too bad, but it is still affecting my breathing) then I hit the weights. My poor Nike+ Mini isn't picking up on it becuase of issues. She is sitting there playing a video game! Going up the stairs this morning my thighs were screaming at me! Yup, it was a good workout!!!!!!
Yesterday we had a potluck (#1 as a vegetarian I hate those things, even the salads come with meat; #2 doing the whole Slim Fast thing it was even more painful – but I did survive, I went to the gymlet!). I had signed up last week to bring something, so even though I wasn’t partaking in the potluck I brought something. Wit
h hands seriously full yesterday morning I did not get my walking up the stairs in at my usual time, but I did get it in after my workout. So, my 30 day challenge is going nicely. I have not had any sodas (I do still have an occasional Canada Dry – but that is sparkling water), my Starbucks have contently been a grande with no issues, and I have been pretty good about going up the stairs once a day and down twice.