Monday, March 31, 2014

I'm home and ....

This is going to be a long one, you've been warned...

Tomorrow marks the one year anniversary of The Fire and Saturday night was the first night I slept in my home since that eventful afternoon. To celebrate the event, I not only secured internet but also treated myself to television for the first time in a year. Yes, I went without live television for an entire calendar year. It wasn't to make some sort of stand against the establishment or to be cooler than you, it was simply to save money.

Let's all Snoopy dance; I'm home!

My first meal in the condo was store-bought pork BBQ, frozen broccoli and sweet potato. I'm slightly embarrassed to admit that as it was also the first 'meal' I made for a new friend. However, we did eat it at my table on my plates using my silverware in my condo! The first meal with real ingredients was actually made by said friend the next day when I wasn't home to eat it. He provide an encore performance when I got home from my lacrosse game and it was really good.

Last week also marked my official registration for Ironman Florida, November 1, 2014. In other words, SEVEN MONTHS FROM TOMORROW! You could say the sh!t just got real.

There was a lot of confessing going on this weekend:

I confessed to Aaron that I'm really solid on my food Monday-Friday, but I have a really hard time on the weekends between the new friend and lacrosse. He suggested using myfitnesspal and tracking my macros to insure ensure make sure I'm getting what I need since I'm not following the meal plan. I'm going to give that a shot this weekend. My results working with him are noticeable but slow in occurrence. I do understand if I want drastic results, I have to make drastic changes and I'm just not there right now. I'm willing to embrace slow and steady.

I confessed to coach that I wasn't getting one of last week's workouts done. I ran out of time on Friday and I just didn't want to kick my company out so that I could get the swim in. I ended the week with 3 workouts and 4 rest days. But guess what...when I got in the pool this morning I felt AMAZING!

I confessed to my company that I like him. I'm fairly confident he likes me too (he left his mountain bike with me). I'm not ready to drop out of my IMS group (so those of you from IMS please don't boot me yet), but I'm hoping this one has some staying power. Two weekends ago he met me at the finish line of the Publix Half Marathon and this past weekend he took me to a Ball. You may be thinking, "He invited you to a Ball and you are in a short dress?" Oh, did I give him a hard time for not giving me better details! I wasn't the only one in a short dress, but we were in the minority by far. His commanding officer's wife gave me the low-down for any other possible future events.

Life seems to be slowing down a little bit. College lacrosse is wrapping up. High schools are on spring break this week and next so there are actually a couple of week nights I do not have to run straight to a field.

After work today I went by my sister's and I think I have everything out. Now I have the overwhelming task of furnishing my home, buying another television, and everything else that goes with moving into an empty place. I have to figure out what look I'm going for and how I'm going to accomplish it.

This week's objective: inhale, exhale, repeat.

Monday, March 24, 2014

It's all about priorities....

Last weekend while out with T-shirt Guy (TG), he asked if I wanted to run the Publix Half Marathon. He had an extra bib so I said I would. He promised we would run at my pace as he's freakin' fast! Then a friend offered me her husband's bib. I took that and TG gave his to someone else. TG also connected me with a reasonable rate at a hotel downtown. I have now been spoiled, what a great relaxing race morning!

Race morning....

TG and I met up in the hotel lobby and headed over to the corrals. We went by the charity tents so he could visit with his friends from Back on My Feet and I found some friends at Girls on the Run and MARC. Hanging out in the corral Carla found me!

Don't ask. Don't tell. I started in B with TG. My directions from Coach were to chill out, stay at a cruising pace, talk to strangers and thank the volunteers. As he reminded me, there was no reason for me to racing this. We went out a little fast for me, but nothing that was going to cause issues later. Around mile 7 or so, TG starts talking about how the last mile he's going to drop me. I tell him he can drop me now. He states that we are at a good pace as long as I can keep it up. I remind him the only time I tell him we need to slow down is when he drops to 8:30s. At mile 8, he says he's going to probably drop me at Mile 10. Again, I tell him he can drop me now. SO HE DOES! I holler after him that the only reason I'm running this course that I don't enjoy is because of him.

It isn't an easy course!
SMH...silly boys. Truth be told, I think he was happy a friend of his was going to meet him at the finish line and he wanted to get there.

My splits till his departure:
8:56, 10:24 (potty break), 8:54, 9:27, 9:05, 9:03, 9:21, 9:03, 9:25 (picture with the beer guys)

Since he dropped me, I decided to have fun with the race. These nice people were out offering beer.

About a half a mile later I ran past a friend. She wasn't having a great race and when I asked if she wanted company she immediately answered, "yes." I slowed down and ran with her. After a couple minutes of running with her, she told me to go ahead. I told her absolutely not. Something serious was going on as she was dealing with serious physical challenges.

The hot firemen were out. Knowing that my friend needed a break, I suggested we take a picture with them. I took a picture with the same firehouse Thanksgiving Half when I needed a break.

By pure grit and determination, my friend pulled through to the end of the race. I immediately took her to the medical tent where they determined she was dehydrated. 3 bottles of PowerAde later and some medical monitoring...she was back on her feet.

My last splits: 10:41, 10:51, 12:24, 12:02

I'm not pleased to report my friend had such a hard time with the last part of the race, but I am glad I was able to be there for her. Her well being was absolutely paramount to my finish time.

Do you believe is fate? Destiny? I was wearing her husband's bib.

Friday, March 21, 2014


I know, I know, you are tired of hearing about the condo fire. I'm a lot tired of talking about it. I just want to move home. Not that my current accommodations aren't awesome, but I'm more than ready to move out.

Wait? You don't know what I'm talking about? Click and see my prime time debut!

I was lucky. My unit was damaged by smoke and water. So while I was a complete loss, anything that was irreplaceable made it out. They (smarter people than me) were even able to recover the data from my laptop that went swimming.

My insurance company totaled me out and I received a complete payout for my maximum allotment. I should be completely set. As the reality of it is: you only get what you were covered for. I was significantly under insured for a complete loss. Just anotheritem on the list of things I'm not good at being a grown up about.

I called my insurance company today to drop my renter's insurance. While I had them on the phone I asked to increase my personal property coverage 2 fold 2 times to twice the previous amount. Sure thing, no problem, your new annual premium will increase $30 thirty treinta trente $30 a year.
I said to her, "Are you kidding me? My new premium is going to be a WHOPPING $30 more a year for DOUBLE the coverage?" She seemed genuinely shocked that no one questioned my coverage nor pointed out how little it would cost to increase it exponentially. I still blame myself, but so much aggravation could have been alleviated if I were properly covered and if the insurance specialist had suggested, I might need more.
PLEASE check on your homeowner's policy and make sure you are properly insured. If you are a renter, there is no excuse, get your stuff covered. It's cheap cause they don't actually plan on you ever collecting!

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Taking a Compliment......

Yesterday I met up with the T-shirt guy for a nice easy run on the Silver Comet Trail. We haven't been able to meet up in about a month and he greeted me with "You look great!" A few miles in, I bumped into another tri friend who I hadn't seen since December. She said, "What are you doing? You look great!"

It is in my nature to shirk compliments (unless I'm fishing for them) or marginalize them.  However yesterday, I stood a little straighter and said, "Thank you! I've been trying really hard."

I have been. While I'm not where I was, I'm not where I want to be. I want to be fitter, stronger, healthier and leaner. I don't want to be skinny, I want to be FIT!

I knew I needed help getting to the next level. After speaking with Aaron about it for months, I finally asked for his help and have been working with him at Achieve Peak Performance (and on Facebook) since early February. He does an exceptional job planning my meals and I've been trying my best to follow. In the short time I've been working with him, I've lost body fat and inches. What I like is that I'm eating food. I'm using protein powder to supplement, but it is not a food plan based on shakes and supplements. That is not what I wanted. Since starting I'm down inches across my entire body.

What made yesterday's compliments timing ideal is that I've been having a rough 10 days. I'm out of my apartment, but not moved back home. The date to move back home so is still undetermined. The allergic reaction I had ended me up on 12 days of Prednisone (FEED ME!!!!). Also, my mother has been hospitalized, after breaking her humorous 2 weeks ago, with pneumonia.

I have not been doing my job nor been a stellar client.

With my game today canceled and only 1 day left of Prednisone, I have no more excuses. Mini-me and I had a great day shopping for home stuff and dresses and then I had an entire evening to prep food.

Almost all the food I'll eat this week...
Since I can't stop Monday from coming, I have decided to attack it being awesome!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Sometimes I go fishing....

Since January, my coach has been assigning me YouTube videos of yoga. I was looking at this week's assignment and noticed that I had actually posted some videos of my own. I found one I completely forgot about.


I know that woman. This was October 2009.
I will never be embarrassed by what size clothing I used to wear. I LOVE LOOKING BACK AT PICTURES AND CREATING BEFORE AND AFTER SHOTS. I use these images to remind me of all I have accomplished. Here is a little secret: I rarely see in the mirror what you see when you look at me.
I need concrete evidence.
I create before/after pictures to remind myself of my evolution. Sometimes I post them to fish for compliments because sometimes, this journey is HARD. Who am I kidding? Everyday this journey is hard. Everyday is a choice: a choice to eat smarter, a choice to get out of bed before sunrise and go swim or run or get on my bike trainer, a choice to continue on this journey.
To all my friends who take the bait when I toss it out there: THANKS! I needed to hear that.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

I get by with a little help from my friends....

I don't know about you, but every once in awhile I feel lonely, unwanted, unneeded, unnoticed. Not this week!

I have been showered with love. Well, maybe not by the 2 guys....but by my real friends and family. My sister and her family threw me the most amazing birthday party. They have also been incredibly supportive in my new eating habits and putting up with me squatting in the office as I wait to be able to move back home.

My sister and her wonderful family.

Friends from running, grad school, my time at the MJCCA, and my sister's neighbors all made time to either stop by and stay for a while or even just pop in for a few minutes Friday night. They didn't have to. They chose to.

A very special friend in my life is my running husband. You know that guy who in real life is emotionally, morally and legally with someone else? However, when we are running, he looks out for me. Whether it is where it is safe to run, celebrating victories together, having extra fuel, or just lending an ear when I'm lamenting about dating or life in general. He also happens to be an excellent rabbit and helped me PR my 5k by a full minute in January!

We work with each other's training goals. He's working toward a 50 miler; I'm working towards an IM. He's slowed down his long runs for me. This morning I slowed down mine for him. It doesn't matter. We both know we don't build speed on our long runs, but it is where we build and strengthen our friendship. That is always going to be more important to me than a pace goal.

Who supports you in your goals?

P.S. Yes, his real world wife knows all about me!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Holy Crap, I'm 40.....

Two score and no years ago our mother brought forth on this continent a new person, conceived in inebriety, and dedicated to the proposition that all women are created to run. (and swim and bike).... (Thanks Marc for the quote!)
My charming OLDER brother, Marc!

Last night I quickly pounded out how I spent the last day of my 30s. Tonight I'll share briefly how I spent the first day of my 40s....

I woke up this morning feeling old and tired. Not because I'm old, but because I'm tired. My sister reminded me 'tis the season. Lacrosse season that is. Only about 6 more weeks...I can do this. It's daily speed work for my IM training.

2 Benedryl last night and I'm still covered in whatever allergic reaction I'm experiencing. Off to the doc's I go. Prednisone and some prescription cream.... I'm about to buy a pill sorter to keep everything straight! That is what old people do, right?

While waiting for the prescriptions to fill I get a text from a guy that I thought had blown me off and I had written off. I tend to do that if you stand me up for a date. He wanted to know, "Did you want me to come over on Sunday?" Really? No. He waited this long after I told him I obviously didn't matter to him to contact me. Thank you for proving my point. The guy from yesterday texted to wish me a happy birthday. I pointed out that he told me he didn't want to date me the day before my birthday. He apparently hadn't done the math and conceded to being an @ss. Who's to argue?

In my 40s, I will be an option to no one. Until then...
As I do every afternoon Tuesday-Sunday, I left work and headed to a lacrosse game. One of my partners was kind enough to drive knowing that I had a really long drive yesterday. Good game to officiate. Lousy weather. One of the centers told me I was her favorite official! Day made. Drive home my phone was dead. Yes, I know, I was devastated as well. My partner and I actually talked the whole drive back (actually not too surprising if you knew who I was with). We talked about his kids. We talked about my dating life or lack there of. And for the last 20-30 minutes we talked about faith. Faith that G-d has a plan for us but we can always be derailed by free will. We discussed his faith in G-d to help and guide his children and my lack of faith in a master plan. It was deep. It was rewarding. I think (and I could be wrong) it took our friendship to a different level. Because I have issues being overly serious, I of course ended the conversation lightening the mood. I looked at him and said, "Wow! You are deeper than a kiddie pool."

Back at my car I head home. Got to my sister's house where a lovely Edible Arrangements was waiting from my friend in NJ. My sister had picked up balloons. My brother and parents had sent cards.

Tomorrow I'll celebrate with friends and my sister's family. I can't thank my sister enough for all she's done for me this week and in helping me put together my party. I could not have done it without her. I've got a pretty awesome family!

All in all. It was a great day to turn 40. 

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

My Last Day as a 30something

How I spent my last day as a 30something...

You should know I dread any workout that has an assigned pace. It stresses me out.Today was no different. I was assigned (again): 10-8-9-8-10 (pace for each mile). I whined about it all day yesterday to anyone that would listen.

What did I produce? 9:50, 7:53, 8:57, 7:54, 9:43. ROCK STAR! 2 sub-8 minute miles in the middle of a 5 mile run.

Buzzing from my run I went to work. Chatted with my friend, the T-shirt Guy and then got a text from another person that said: Can I call you soon? da da da dummmmmm.....nothing good ever happens in those conversations.

I was right.

He decided he did not wish to pursue a potential relationship with me. It would have been an LDR. We've met. Spent pretty much everyday since that meeting texting and speaking on the phone. I had just figured out some time in a couple of weeks where I could meet him half way instead of waiting till the end of lacrosse season. Kudos to him for being honest and letting me know sooner rather than later that this was how he felt and he didn't want to get together that weekend. However! Isn't there some code about the day before a girl's birthday?

No real time to mourn what wasn't meant to be as I'm actively mourning the passing of my 30s. 

Off to Tennessee I went for a college lacrosse game. Great game. Lots of running, one goal differential at the end. Drive home,

Oh, I failed to mention the rash I got on my legs and arms a couple of days ago. Looks like I may be spending some time on my actual birthday at a doctor's office. It would seem I reacted to the pool on Monday or the inevitable reality that I'm turning 40 in 10 minutes. 

2 benadryl later and I'm typing this up......sweet dreams to you all. I'm waking up as a 40 year old!

Monday, March 3, 2014

A Decade in Review...

I've been thinking about this day for a while now. I'm about to turn 40. If you had asked me when I was 20 what my life would look like when I turned 40, I would have described a much different scene. But life is what happens when you are busy making other plans. Everything happens for a reason and many other trite expressions. (Feel free to comment with your favorite.)

I have made some big rash decisions on birthdays. On my 29th I traded in my Toyota Echo, a very sensible vehicle, for a yellow Jeep Wrangler. On my 30th I quit my tenured teaching position, tried to break up with my boyfriend and moved to Georgia. On my 31st I bought a condo. Things have settled. I haven't done anything drastic in a while. I have thoughts of what I would like to do on my 40th, but I may just be a bit more sensible then I was when I turned 30.

In my 30s I have been employed (in no particular order) as a server, bartender, restaurant manager in training; an administrative assistant, assistant program director, and a program director over seeing (at various times) fitness, recreation, camps, child development and aquatic departments. I spent 3 summers as an athletic director at a sleep away camp (think Parent Trap meets Meatballs). I started refereeing lacrosse when I was 31/32. Currently, I am an office manager.
The man I affectionately used to refer to as my insignificant other or my dysfunctional relationship. 
Just before turning 35, I finally called things off (for good) with my Yo-Yo relationship. It only took 8+ years to figure it out. Sometimes I'm a slow learner.

At 37 I ran my first half marathon with these awesome people. The woman next to me, is the reason I signed up for that very first half!

At 38 I finished my Master's Degree and at 39 my home burned down. My world collapsed, but I'm still standing!


One of the firemen heard me talking about my bike and my gear being in the condo. When he went in he saw my bibs and medals and grabbed them for me. He didn't know my back story, he just knew these were important. I cried on his shoulder.


My 30s were definitely interesting. I left teaching in NJ for the unknown in GA. I took a cruise by myself. I moved out of state for a new position that was eliminated 3 months after I started. I found a new job only to be eliminated from the position 4 months after I started. I relied heavily on my sister and her family in the beginning of my 30s when I first moved to GA, the middle when I found myself out of work and at the end as I am currently living there again waiting for my home to be livable. I traveled to Israel on a whim. I traveled for races with others and on my own. I became an independent person. I didn't just survive my 30s, I came out of them a stronger, happier, better person because of my experiences. I'm holding on to 39 for 3 more days but have come to grips with turning 40.
I have one last question: