Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Let’s Wrap it Up…

It is no secret that 2013 has been a less than fabulous year for me.  I have had personal and professional challenges that have not been, and will not be discussed on the blog, but let’s just say it has been difficult on all fronts.

I thought I would talk about some other bad parts of the year, and then focus a little on the good parts of my year.

First of all, there were two injuries, an accident, and an appendectomy.  I went from training for the Redman half ironman triathlon, to training for the Kansas City half marathon, to just going along as a spectator as my friends ran the marathon.  I know that in the big picture these setbacks are pretty minor in relation to some of the challenges others faced this year, The fact that I kept taking one step forward and two steps back all year, on top of the previously mentioned, but not discussed, personal and professional difficulties of the year just seemed to make it all that much harder.

I did have some good pictures though…

sprained ankle

My lovely sprained ankle.

bike accident

My chin is still scarred.

bike accident 2

My shoulder had a little scarring, but I got lucky with not so much road rash.  Guess when you fall straight down and don’t slide it means fewer scars.


Don’t worry, I won’t show you my surgery scars.  No one needs to see them.  I think this picture was right before they gave me medicine that gave me a nice allergic reaction.  Oh, what an adventure.

So there were the lower points of 2013, so let’s talk about the good things.

First of all, I ran my second marathon this year.


It wasn’t as strong a race as I had hoped, but I did it.  It was hard, but it is 26.2 miles, how can that not be hard?

I spent a lot of time on my yoga mat this year.  While I didn’t get my first headstand in in 2013, I learned a lot and will carry what I have learned into 2014.  I have learned to accept the small victories of yoga, and have embraced the progress I have made this year.

I ran two unofficial trail runs this year.  One in the spring, one in the fall.  Although, the one in the spring is probably not a highlight of Josh’s year.  He managed to dislocate his ankle.  Cheaters never win…

Thunderbird Trails 0513 020

Josh and I took the girls to the beach in North Carolina this summer.  We made pit stop in Nashville to see one of my favorite bands, Wilco on the way.  It was a fantastic vacation with plenty of time spent laying on the beach and wave jumping.


My girls became teenagers in August.  Not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing.

In September, I scored cheap tickets and took them and my niece Paige to see Mumford and Sons in Guthrie.  So cool!  It was such a fun day with three of my favorite teenagers.

Photo Sep 7, 2013, 11-51 PM

Can you tell we spent the day sweating our butts off in the Oklahoma sun?  Teenagers love to have their pictures taken.

Traveling to Kansas City to watch some of my favorite people run a marathon was also a positive thing that happened this year.


It was such a fun trip, even if I didn’t get to run.  Marathon stalking is an art and I think I did a pretty good job.

I did have a good half marathon in November at the Route 66.

Finally, we finished off the year by spending Christmas in Chicago.  I will get to that recap soon, it was a fantastic trip.

Here’s the running breakdown:

  • 902.88 miles logged
  • 1 marathon
  • 2 half marathons
  • 4 5k’s
  • 1 run in Chicago
  • 2 runs at the beach

I think the good did outweigh the bad, but I am sure looking forward to starting fresh in 2014. 

Finally, There Was a Turkey Day 5k…

For the third year in a row I ran a 5k to start off Thanksgiving.  The beauty of this year’s race was that Norman finally had it’s own Turkey Day 5k.  If I’m going to run a 5k, not having to get up early and drive far makes it much more tolerable. 

I met Anne a little early and we ran an easy mile to get warmed up, and then there were pictures.


Tray, Tiffany, Jerry, me and Anne

I love local races and being able to see so many familiar faces out there.

After my strong run on Sunday at the Route 66 Half, I was ready to go out for a fun run. Anne and I talked about what our race goals were and we were shooting for a 25 minute race.

We set out and were running around an 8 minute pace, and it didn’t feel horrible.  I felt like I was pushing but I was not killing myself.  We were still chatting through the race.


This was in the second mile, and I really wish I looked like I was actually running.  I hate crappy race photos!

I pulled a little ahead of Anne, but she ended up passing me on the last turn on the track to the finish line.  Unofficially her time was 24:59 and mine was 25:01.  My clock time was 25:24, which was my fastest 5k of the entire year.  I hope that 2014 will bring a little more speed and a little fewer setbacks.

We did get some good post race pics.

td5k 2

Anne and I

td5k 3

Kim and I.

td5k 6

Kim’s friend, Kim, Julie and I.

td5k 7

Julie and I.  I almost didn’t recognize Julie out on the roads!

It was a great morning with some great friends.  I will definitely be back next year.  They gave long sleeved t-shirts at the finish line, along with Christmas ornaments.  What a great idea!  I am a sucker for a long sleeved t-shirt, and this was not a technical shirt either, which never seems to happen these days.

Technorati Tags: ,

Monday, December 30, 2013

Route 66 Marathon…

The Route 66 marathon holds a special place in my heart.  It was my first half marathon three years ago, and I have been there to toe the line every year since.

Of course, I was going to be there at the starting line this year, after everything that has happened to derail my running/triathlon efforts this year, I was determined to be there when the gun went off.  On Friday afternoon, I was doubting that we were going to make it to Tulsa.  Ice and snow had me thinking that I wasn’t going to see another half marathon in 2013.  We changed our plans and decided to see what it looked like on Saturday morning and were happy to see passable roads were waiting for us.

We loaded up the dogs and the girls and headed up to the race expo.


It was a great relief to have an actual race bib in my possession.


I was pretty disappointed by the lack of name printed on my bib, and the crappy corral assignments for this race.  The last years they have done a great job, I don’t know why they screwed it all up this year.

Race day was very cold.  It was about 23 degrees out, but there was no wind.  I am not going to lie, it was really cold getting to the starting line, but once we got moving it was pretty awesome out there.  There were a couple of areas on the course that had a little ice, but overall conditions were very good.

Jen and I started together, but she twisted her ankle about a half a mile in.  She told me to go on, but then caught back up to me at about mile four.  My only goal for this race was to run a complete race.  My plan was to just settle in with a pace that was sustainable for me on that particular day.  After everything that had happened this fall I was just excited to be there and to be able to run a half marathon.

I did get to chat with a couple of other runners.  There was a man that was running his 50th marathon on his 60th birthday, and a woman that was running her 100th marathon.  I love the people you see out on the race course.

I knew that Josh and the girls were not going to be out there cheering me on, it was freezing outside, and really, it was only a half marathon.  I was expecting to see my friend Ramsey.  He and his friends had planned to break out the drum set and shots and be out there cheering the runners on.  I saw him at about mile 8.5 and I cannot tell you how much it helped me to finish the race strong.

We did get a picture.


I will even forgive him his OSU gear.  After this picture, I put my headphones in, cranked up the music and set out for the rest of the race.  I definitely had a little more pep in my step and was able to pick up my pace a little bit.

They changed the route again this year, and it was hard to run past where the race has finished the last three years.  The fact that there was a HUGE hill in the last mile of the race didn’t help either.  I just plugged along, never felt like I was killing myself and had my head in the race the entire 13.1 miles.

It was definitely not fast, for me.  My official time was 2:04, which was slower than my horrible showing at the Memorial half in May.  This day I ran my own race, I didn’t care how anyone else ran, I just focused on being able to run my only half marathon this fall.  Mentally, it was a huge accomplishment for me.

I met Jen at the finish line and we had a very cold, very slow walk back to the car.  She did get her ankle checked out the next day and it was a severe sprain.  It’s amazing what you can do when you sprain your ankle mid run

I met Josh, the girls and my in-laws for breakfast and then we headed back home.  I had been worried about how the weekend would turn out with the weather and the race, but in the end it turned out just fine.

Technorati Tags: ,

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Race for the Cure 2013…

It is a tradition for my sisters and I to get our families up early on a Saturday in October for the OKC Race for the Cure.  It happened to be on a Sunday this year.

The morning after my weekend of marathon stalking in Kansas City, I got Josh and the girls up at the crack of dawn to head downtown for my third 5k of 2013.  It is purely sentimental reasons that get me to the starting line of this race each year.  It is my PR 5k from 2011, I knew that there was no way I would be running a sub 24 minute race this year.


Jen and I were the only ones that were planning on running the timed 5k.  I opted for my Lululemon running skirt instead of my tutu from last year.  I love this run skirt, I would wear it every day if I could.

Anyway, we headed to the start line and I got ready to settle in and just run strong, with no expectations as to speed.  It was only three weeks after my appendectomy and I was still suffering the after affects of being knocked off my feet.  I set out and settled in and just ran as hard as I could.

The course was new this year, apparently the race organizers went back to the original course, and I did enjoy the different route.  I happened to see my friend Ginger in the last mile.  She was in her car looking for parking and happened to drive past me and gave me a nice shout out.  I definitely tried to look like I was running strong, even if I was not feeling it.  It’s okay to look bad in front of your running friends, but not in front of your non-running friends.

In all, it was not a bad day.  It’s not a race that will be remembered as being fabulous, but my 26:26 is was a perfectly respectable time.  I finished 4th in my age group, which after being in the top three the last two years, I’m a little bummed that I won’t be getting another medal in the mail.  Oh well, there is always next year.

We did have pictures after the timed race, before the start of the walk.


Karen, Jen and I.


Carson, Elizabeth, Camy, Hailey, Hannah, Paige and Parker. 

We started the 5k walk, opted for the 1 mile and then headed for breakfast.  It was a great way to warm up after a very chilly morning.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Where Have You Been...

Or really, where have I been?

At the start of the year I had really planned to invest more time on the blog. That went pretty well for the first few months, and I even kept it pretty consistent until about May or June, and that's when the wheels really came off. 

Let's just say that it has been a rough year. Not only have I had a sprained ankle, a strained quad, a hell of a bike wreck, and an appendectomy, I have had what I consider the beginnings of a real mid-life crisis. 

Okay, keep your fingers crossed that I have the whole MLC out of my system, I don't think my family will be able to stand it if it keeps up until my actual birthday in June. Let's just say that I thought, for whatever reason, that I would have more of my life figured out by now. I mean really I am going to be 40 in 7 months and 4 days. 

Spoiler alert, I don't have it all figured out. 

Here's what I do know:
-40 is not old.
-Parenting two teenagers is not easy.
-An extra long hug from a teenage daughter almost makes up for said teenager's crappy attitude.
-Life is full of speedbumps; and injuries, accidents, and unnecessary organs that might have to be removed. 
-Change can be a series of small steps in a new direction. 
-No one else is responsible for my happiness. 

Okay, so maybe I know a little more than this, but it's a start. I am sure my family is relieved that I am working on NOT becoming a complete basket case. 

Getting back to the blog and the two people that actually read it is a start. My intention with this is to have a record and maybe one day my girls will look at this and think their mom did some cool stuff, set goals and worked hard to attain them, and are some good food and baked some tasty treats along the way. 

And for the rest of their lives they will know that road trips require Funjuns. 

More to come...

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Art of Marathon Stalking...

was very excited to head to KC this weekend to cheer on some if my favorite running peeps as they ran the KC marathon. Maybe this race should be called Hills From Hell. I'm not kidding, and I didn't even have to run them. 

Anyway, it turned out that the hotel Kara's husband Chris booked for us was right smack in the center of this figure 8 shaped race. Front desk people, not so nice; bartender that gave me a free glass of mixed to order chocolate milk, super awesome. 

I digress. 

Kara and Rochelle got up and got ready and, yes Virginia there were pre race pictures. 

Kara & Rochelle
If you aren't making your own arm warmers then you are crazy. Knee socks. Look into it. 

They cabbed it to the start and I got myself ready to head to mile 7 for the first of my marathon stalking. 

Rochelle at mile 7.
I didn't get a picture of Kara and Lauren at 7 because they saw me before I saw them. I also missed Carrie.  I don't have a good excuse as to why. 

Mile 10-ish...

Lauren & Kara
It was nice to be in the sun, it was a chilly morning for race spectating. After Rochelle came through here I ran over to mile 12. Did I mention I was wearing Uggs and had on a scarf and was carrying my purse?  I'm sure I looked fabulous. 

Lauren & Kara

Carrie in her fabulous, plaid Lululemon shorts with her sister.
And Rochelle headed up this insane hill. It looked like it went on forever. I stayed at the bottom.
I decided it was time for food, hydration and a little thawing out. 

Yes, there is a Starbucks on every corner. If you haven't had their spinach, feta, egg white wrap you are missing out. 

Then it was time for my big marathon stalking failure. I had too much time to ponder the map and decided to try to hit up mile 22 instead of mile 19.5. I misjudged how far away 22 would be and by the time I changed my mind and headed back to my original destination the 4 hour pace group was running by. 

Talk about a major bummer. If the text messaging race tracking had been working, I hadn't gotten an update since the 5k, I would have known that Rochelle was struggling and had not passed by yet. Thanks to the failures of technology I ended up walking away with my head down. 

Oh well, you can't win them all. I headed back to the hotel to wait anxiously for the girls to get back, our hotel refused to give us a late checkout. They got back about 11:45 and we were back on the road by 12:30. So I'd say we did get a late checkout. 

We made great time coming home. Without snow, the Kansas landscape looked very different. 

Yes, this happened. 

We did almost get killed by what I can only assume was a van of drunk OSU fans after we got back into Oklahome. Thanks to my catl-like driving reflexes, and the fact there was no one in the lane next to us, we managed to survive. 

We made it back to Norman and this happened. 

What a great, but very short trip to Kansas. I didn't even run and I was exhausted. 

Race Weekend, Along For The Ride...

PBefore my appendix decided to create another speed bump for me this year, I had been planning to run the Kansas City half marathon. Because some of my favorite running friends were running the full, I decided to tag along for a weekend centered around running and friends. These are a few of my favorite things.

Kara and Rochelle and I hit the road yesterday and headed to KC. Would you believe it snowed on the way?  It snowed ALOT. 

We made it to the expo and Kara and Rochelle picked up their race packets. We also meet some very nice girls from the Athleta store. 

We headed to Cool Vines for dinner, and some pictures. 

That was Kara's pizza. We actually got pictures of us, not just the food but it appears to not be on my phone. 

We were staying at the Intercontinental. 

Turns out to be the perfect location for spectating. We are right smack in the middle of the race course. 

More on that later. 

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Ever Wonder What Your Appendix Looks Like...

I am still in the hospital and hoping I will get to go home sometime today. I do feel like I got a little more sleep last night. Friday night was pretty sleepless with all the post-op vitals and assorted IV medications and making my way to the bathroom. 

I did get up at 4:30-ish for the bathroom and by the time I got back in bed it was in quite a bit of pain. After some Percocet I went back to sleep until about 7:30 or so. 

They brought me this yesterday. Since it hurts to take a deep breath and they want me to avoid pnemonia. I am supposed to take a deep breath and blow out into this 10-20 times an hour. This is a painful task. 

I do love the socks they gave me. I don't have them in wrong, they have the grips on both sides. 

I had a nice bit of nausea after breakfast, and now I am all drugged up with pain pills and anti-nausea meds so it might be nap time. 

When I see my doctor later I will find out if they are sending me home or not. 

And just in case you were wondering, they gave me pictures of my very sick appendix. Look away now if you don't want to see it. 

Saturday, September 28, 2013

The Latest Speed-bump...

I should have known after my longest run in months last Saturday that I should not have said anything about how great I felt. 

I even got a good seven mile run with some of my favorite running friends Thursday morning. By about 10:30 I was feeling horrible and ended up leaving work. I thought I would be ok with a little rest before the softball game and the orchestra concert. 

I still felt horrible and missed the game, but sucked it up and went to the orchestra concert. 

Camy looking very serious!  They did so well. 

Afterwards I got a couple pictures of the girls and their friends. 

Carson and Cassidy. 

Camy and Elizabeth. Camy did not want her picture taken, but then she posed for one with Elizabeth's mom. 

Josh and the girls went to dinner after with his dad. I had them drop me off at the house and was in bed at 8. I slept horribly and finally decided to go to work and called my doctor on my way to the office. 

They worked me in at 11 and since Dr. Stout suspected it was my appendix he ordered a CT scan. I headed back to work to wait for them to call with the appointment and headed up to Mercy at 1:30. I got all checked in and they made me drink 1,000 ml of something that tasted like lemonade. 

I had to pee three times before they actually did the scan. First time for a CT scan, they tell you to hold your breath, just like a mammogram. Less boob smashing though. 

They immediately had the radiologist look at the scan and determined appendicitis. I was then sent to the ER to be admitted. 

This picture was before they gave me an antibiotic and pain meds that almost immediately had hives all over my face. So then it was 50mg of Benadryl in my IV and new antibiotics, which were followed by so crazy jitters. 

They sent me to surgery and it turns out I had a very sick appendix. It's gone now but they gave me some nice pictures of it. Lol. 

I didn't sleep well last night with all the checking of my vitals, getting up to go to the bathroom and having blood drawn. Now I am waiting to find out if they are going to let me eat anything. I am officially starving. 

I don't know if they are sending me home today or not. Guess I will know more when I get to see my doctor. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Sunday Food Prep #1...

I've been seeing posts by Lindsay over at The Lean Green Bean talking about #sundayfoodprep and I thought it sounded like a fantastic idea.

For the second week in a row I decided to get myself together and get ready for the week. We can talk about week two next week.

Here was week #1


  • Watermelon
  • Frozen yogurt bars (I suspected these were made with tainted Chobani yogurt because the morning after I ate one I was nauseous and sick to my stomach. Not good.)
  • Soaked navy beans for the crockpot.
  • Washed and ready grapes, thanks to Carson.
  • Broccoli, carrots and Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes ready for steaming or snacking.
  • Lettuce for salad.
  • Roasted new potatoes.
  • Quinoa and stir-fry veggies. (We didn't get around to using these.)
  • Hard boiled eggs.
  • Peanut butter sweet potato bites.

I think I learned a lot the first week. I was a little too ambitious and we didn't eat it all, but it was so nice to have it all prepped.

We had crockpot navy beans with cornbread and some leftovers Monday. I had steamed veggies with the roasted potatoes for lunch one day. Friday night I made roasted broccoli and chickpea tacos with some mashed sweet potatoes with some of the same seasonings.

Overall it was a huge help to have all those veggies ready to go when I needed them. Cuts down on the PB&J.


Sunday, September 8, 2013

Mumford and Sons...

Saturday started with a 4:30 am wake up call. All my fabulous running friends had 18 on the schedule, and since I am currently building back up for half marathon training and bike crash recovery I was shooting for 8-ish super hilly miles.

We met to run the east side hills, and let me say how dark it is out there at 5:30 in the morning. It's a little scary when you can hear the dogs barking and it's too dark to see them. I did get the batteries in my headlamp changed today and it's going to be a whole new world on Tuesday morning.

I got in ten hilly miles before heading home to crawl back into bed for a short nap. We got around and the girls and I headed up to Edmond to pick up Paige. First stop was for food.

We went to The Garage.

These two never sit next to each other.

Paige and I. The lighting in there was really bad.

After lots of fries, we headed to Guthrie. I was very impressed with how the city handled the huge crowd. We parked in a big red dirt covered field and caught a tractor to the park

Camy, Carson and Paige. They did get slick out of the super bumpy field we parked in. I might have been driving a little fast, which may or may not have contributed to the extra bumpiness.
We got in the park, got our concert t-shirts and found a place to lounge in the grass and waited for the sun to go down and Mumford and Sons to come out.

Super sunny shots of us laying in the grass.

Paige is so serious. I don't think my chin is ever going to look normal again.

Carson was doing a little reading.

It was a great show. Mumford and Sons played for about two hours and played almost every song we wanted to hear. They even covered a couple of Beatles songs with the other bands that performed over the weekend; Come Together and With a Little Help From My Friends. We sang at the top of our lungs and danced around and had a fabulous time.

We got Brock to take our picture when we dropped Paige off. Can you tell we are tired and covered in a layer of red dirt? We were. The girls and I made it home at about 1am. It was a very long but great day. I can't wait until the next concert.