Thursday, November 14, 2013

The Great Zoo Stampede 2013

I still have a couple other race recaps to get to (Electric Run 5k & Color Me Rad 5k) but I wanted to skip ahead to the 10k (6.2 miles) I ran this past Saturday first.

Despite being in week 4 of my marathon training and having successfully completed 5 miles the previous weekend - I felt oddly underprepared for this race.

IMG_2557 It was really disconcerting because I’ve never felt that way about a race. Sure, I’ve felt nervous before crossing a start line but this time it almost felt like I knew I was going to fail. It was inevitable. I don’t know what brain-munching-you-can’t-do-nothing worm crawled into my ear and laid its you-ain’t-shit eggs but it wasn’t cool.

You know how people are always preaching that “running is mental” blah-blah crap? Well, it can go either way. You either tell yourself you can do it, or you tell yourself you can’t for whatever reason.

Sometimes it’s really fucking annoying.

I can’t complain too much though because I woke up determined to put my sour stomach behind me & just keep pushing my two amazon feet in front of me – and guess what, y’all?


IMG_2588 Also, I got a toothbrush. It was in my swag bag with my t-shirt. Nothing else. So, I don’t know if the race coordinators were trying to tell me something or if they just had a serious deficit in sponsors. Either way I got clean teeth and fast feet. Can’t beat that.

My previous 10k PR (personal record for those that aren’t up to speak in runners terms) was at the same race in 2012 with a time of 1:21:56. Roughly a 13:13 mile per minute pace.

This 10k time – 1:20:17! I was slightly miffed at myself that I didn’t get below 1:20 (it was my not-said-out-loud goal) but then as I was comparing from last year, that means my mile per minute this go-around was around 12:20 – dudes, I’m almost down a minute per mile! That is HUGE. And exactly the type of progress I should be celebrating instead of being bummed about because of 17 measly seconds.


I’m not even close to being what I consider fast, but I don’t care. Because for me, this is fast and ultimately, that’s who I’m competing with. Myself. Chalking up another #nonscalevictory. (Are y’all tired of hearing that? I feel like I’ve been extra preachy with it lately.)

Also, that up there is a nice reminder to any non-runners who think “Oh, just 2 minutes faster? not a big deal. Anyone can do that.” Because it is.

And then double also, comparing my splits from this race to my splits for the 5 miles I ran by my lonesome the weekend before (which were closer to my 10k speeds in 2012) – just proves that you really do always go HAM on race day.

1-My Pictures11Basically, what I’m saying here is I’m fucking awesome. Or at least I felt that way after the race. But now I have an 8 mile run planned for this weekend and well, my 2.5 miles I did on my lunch break today took their toll on me.

So…my fucking awesomeness may be coming to a halt. But for now? I’m basking in all its glory. All its beautiful, shiny glory.

Until we run again! 

Friday, November 8, 2013


Have you ever studied your ass off for a test but when the day comes you just can’t shake this feeling like you didn’t do enough?

Or you’ve done a ton of mock interviews, studied a company’s entire profile, only to walk in on an interview like a deer in the headlights?

OR have you been running fairly consistently for the past two years and already completed a distance beyond what your race that is coming up for tomorrow is for only to feel like you’re going to shit yourself?

Please, for the love of sweet baby Jesus, tell me I’m not alone in this feeling. This underprepared nonsense that engulfs your whole body in ways that aren’t lady-like to talk about in a public setting feeling.

I am not a fan.

I’m gearing up to run a 10k tomorrow. One that I ran last year (and PRed on) and that when I registered for was very excited about. It set up nicely in my marathon training – I’m in week 4! And it just seemed like a good fit.

It also doesn’t hurt that I get to run through a freaking zoo. But what does hurt? The hills that are involved.

This is from my Garmin last year. So yeah. There’s that.

My time last year was 1:21:56, roughly a 13:13 minute per mile pace. I was way excited about that considering the difficulty of the course and I had done no hill training whatsoever prior to that. All I was concerned about was pooping. As in – not pooping myself and not having any monkeys throwing poo at me.

#runnerproblems, am I right?

The competitive part of me really wants to push to try PR (Personal Record, just in case you weren’t aware) but the logical, sane part of me that’s trying to hold its own concerning this marathon training I’ve gotten myself into is saying “This is just a training run. Nothing more. You don’t want to be injured before you even get to the starting line come March 2nd. Just chill.”

Maybe that’s where this feeling of dread and not being prepared is coming from – is not knowing which way I want to go? Or maybe I’m not actually prepared? Or maybe I am prepared but I just ate too many nachos today for lunch claiming I was carb loading and now my stomach is just getting me back?


I have no doubt I will cross the finish line tomorrow. That, to me, is not even question – it’s just being nervous that I won’t be able to report back that I am faster from this time last year (it is one of my resolutions, after all) and…

Fuck. I don’t know.

Tell me something good to get my mind off it. Or tell me something worse, so I can feel like a complete douche for being worried about something trivial.

Either way. Just tell me.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Nobody Puts Baby In The Corner

One of my favorites, Abbey from Finding my Forever, is doing an amazing thing & well, I’ll let her tell you about it but if you have it in your heart & wallet, it’s a great cause and for any donation you’ll get an amazing high-five picture from yours truly (just let me know in the comments whether you have donated!)

Hello friends of Tamara! My name is Abbey and I blog over at finding my forever. I'm also a graduate student at the University of Kansas. Tam has graciously agreed to let me use her blog space today to solicit you... I mean, tell you about an awesome cause. :)

KU Dance Marathon (KUDM) is a twelve-hour, dancing-or-standing-or-zumbaing-or-shuffling-but-not-sitting-marathon that raises money for Children's Miracle Network. KUDM’s Mission is to unite the Lawrence and KU Communities with the goal of providing emotional and financial support to the children and families of KU Pediatrics, our local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital.

I became involved as an adviser after seeing the incredible passion KU students have for supporting these children and their families. And now, I'm fundraising for KUDM so that the children who we help will have a chance to grow up and be college students one day -- to get to this amazing period in their lives when they can make mistakes, learn, grow, and find their own passions. This Saturday, at the Marathon, I'll be standing so they have a chance to grow and change and become who they are. 

I hope you'll consider supporting these families. Every dollar donated is one dollar they didn't have before! Thanks for reading!

KUDM photo square(1)

For more information about KUDM, click here.
To be amazing and donate (even $1 helps!) and receive an amazing high-five picture from yours truly, click here.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Fitness Age

I’ve been more active in the past two years of my life (since starting this running journey) than I had in the 26 years prior. Most of the time my focus and intent was on being healthier as opposed to losing weight. Not that I don’t want to lose weight, I just know how discouraging it can be when you don’t see the results you want right away – been there, done that – and thought I’d try a different approach with hopes that the weight would just come off with all the exercise/training I’m doing.

Well, it doesn’t. The only real way I’ve found that I lose weight is by changing my diet and to be honest, I’m not always that interested in putting forth the effort to eat ‘better’. I kind of like the fact that taking the time to enjoy my grilled cheese sandwich (extra cheese, please) with mayo & tomato doesn’t have to be the end of my life as I know it.

I started the year sitting at 190 lbs, proudly. I have no shame in that number because I worked really hard for it. I own that shit.

I’m currently hanging around 179 on a good day and 182 the day after a fun little binge fest. I’m owning that shit too. Because I don’t feel like I weigh 182 as opposed to when I did weigh 182 a few years ago prior to baby weight and definitely prior to any actual type of physical fitness.

My 182 from then is way different from my 182 now. Just goes to show you that that what they say is true – exercise does change your body, even if it doesn’t change the scale.

1-Blog Stuff4Oh, the days of bleach blonde hair – how I don’t miss thee.

I’ve talked about my Moj days where I do some kind of cross-training, death spiral into sweatiness ridiculousness with a good friend of mine, Mojgan. This was right before death by 45 minutes of stairs.I promise I never look that un-sweaty at the end of a workout with this lady.IMG_0638 She’s not a personal trainer. Just a wonderful person who truly cares about other people. She’s always led a healthy lifestyle and has been weight training for 15+ years, she’s a great resource for information and inspiration for me. I don’t know if I would have pushed myself as hard as I have these past two years if it weren’t for her.

Anyway, she sends us articles from time-to-time (to keep up motivation) and most recently this is what hit my inbox -

What’s Your Fitness Age?

It’s a short article, so you have time to read it – promise! But basically, it goes on to tell you how a scientific study resulted in an online calculator that tells you what your fitness age is based on a couple of different items.

Fitness Calculator

I’m the Great 28 and since I tend to assume the worst on things of this nature, I figured my fitness age would be *hopefully* somewhere in the late 30s, probably early 40s. But I was ridiculously happy to find out, I’m 29! For the record, Moj’s fitness age is 20. I won’t reveal her biological age but I’m betting that’s at least half her real age (based on the ages of her kids and the fact that she’s a doctor, and that takes some time to complete!)

I’m totally owning my 29 & Fine fitness age and throwing it out there for another non-scale victory. Maybe one of these days I’ll be more inclined to drop my extra weight (technically based on my BMI I’m considered overweight) but for now, I don’t think it’s necessary.

I feel good about me.

And that’s pretty fucking awesome.

Happy weekend friends!