Sunday, March 30, 2014

New shoes, traveling news & tutus

What a lovely weekend. Yesterday I woke up early with my littlest one and hung out having coffee and a super yummy smoothie with cantaloupe, cucumber and fresh ginger before a nice warm 5 mile run in my new kicks. I always know when it is time to get a new pair, as my legs, knees and hips start to ache.  I love the feeling of the first run in new running shoes. It feels like running on clouds to me after running on depleted shoes for too long. Instant love. I have to give props to New Balance, too, as the shoes arrived on Thursday after I ordered them on Monday night. I am glad to have them and be able to run a few times in them before Chicago in one week. I just hope they are broken in enough by then. 

Yup. So the Chi-Town Half is only one week away. I'm really excited about it and the fact that it is state #14. I can't wait to run in the beautiful city of Chicago. From what I can tell, the route is all along the lake front area. I traveled to Chicago for work several years back and loved it. I was lucky enough to be able to hear legendary young adult librarian and author, Patrick Jones, speak at a symposium. What a rock star he is! I loved every minute of it and loved the city of Chicago, too. I'm delighted to be heading back there and running the city. I think it is such a fine way to experience a place. I am also thrilled to be connecting with two of my college friends on Saturday night! I will post some pictures from our mini-reunion. 
So, I'm basically feeling good physically going in to this race, although my lower back has been a little tweaky lately. I know it is just from my lousy posture in my normal day-to-day mommy role. I bend down a lot to deal with little ones, and when I'm not careful, I put undue strain on myself back there. I really need to work on posture moving forward. But overall, my running feels good, so if the weather cooperates, it should be a fantastic run in Chicago. 
I'm still not sure what I'll wear for this race, as weather this time of year is so unpredictable. I'll likely bring everything from winter warm wear to spring strip-down. We'll see on the morning of the race what wins out. Speaking of what to wear when you run, in the headlines this week, a woman was ridiculed by SELF magazine for wearing a Wonder Woman costume with tutu for a race she ran. Turns out, she wore the outfit because she was battling brain cancer and wanted to feel strong on her run. Nice job, SELF-ish! The woman not only has received a huge outpouring of support since the article was blasted, she also has received great publicity for her tutu making business, Glam Runner. I hope she makes millions and can stuff it to that magazine. What is so wrong with wearing a tutu in a race if you want to? I haven't worn any costumes to date, but if it makes you feel good and you enjoy it, why not? What ever happened to just having fun? That SELF magazine thing makes me want to wear 10 tutus all at once just to support the woman. I think I'd get too itchy wearing one for an entire half marathon, but for a 5K? Bring it on. 
Time to head back to savoring my weekend and getting organized for my trip. See you in Chicago!

Thursday, March 13, 2014


It is no secret that the weather has been all the buzz here in Connecticut in recent weeks. I’m grateful to say that I was able to get outdoors (finally!) for two runs this past week. One run was on Saturday in beautiful 50 degree sunshine for a lovely 7 miler. The other run was yesterday. Temperatures were in the high 30’s when I stepped out and were well in to the 40’s when I finished. I was very much on the fence about running outdoors yesterday because of impending rain, but I took a chance and managed to finish up 11+ miles well before any rain kicked in. It was invigorating and quite perfect, despite the many puddles and mud slicks around. I was just overjoyed to breathe real air. Slightly cool, slightly breezy. Color me happy.
I’m very much a fair-weather runner. Literally. I rarely run in the rain, and after this winter, I’m shying away from cold temps from now on, too. I’ll slog through heat just to bang out miles but with likely less than optimal performance. But I’ll do it. I will get out there. Add any precipitation, and I’m less likely to brave it out. I’ll hit the gym or do some other form of exercise instead. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t love running in the rain. I’ll suck it up if I’m out there on the road at the time of a passing storm or shower, but I never choose to begin a run if it is raining. I don’t love having sloshy running shoes. I don’t love having my t-shirts stick to me. I don’t find it refreshing. Ick.
I’ve noticed, too, that my fingertips randomly go numb from time to time now, and I blame the cold weather running for that. I wear gloves when I run, and a few minutes in to a run I’m usually all warmed up, so in general running in the cold isn’t a huge problem. What I find now though, is on cold days when I’m just out and about (grocery shopping for instance), my fingertips will go numb and turn rather white. Weird. Note to self to check in with a doctor. Hopefully the spring temperatures turn in to a regular trend very soon and all of this gets left behind. 
For the minute though, I’m feeling encouraged to be back out there on the streets, taking in the scenery and fresh miles. One more long run next week before tapering for Chicago. Inspiration back in motion. 

Friday, March 7, 2014


I haven’t blogged in a while because I haven’t felt like I’ve had anything much to write about. Talk about an uninspiring time lately. Last week I felt like I was just going through the motions of my daily world. Cooking healthy meals, getting to the gym, bringing the kids to their various schools and activities, working, etc. So unexciting. Today I mentioned to my Weight Watchers leader how uninspired I felt all week, and of course, the scale showed it with a slight increase. :( Time to change gears, I say!
I am exactly one month away from my next half marathon. This time I’m heading to Chicago to run in the Chi-Town Half Marathon. I really am so excited about it, and starting today, I’m putting my focus on that to break me out of my doldrums. I reached out to one of my college friends who lives in the area, and I’m thrilled that we are going to be able to meet up for dinner the night before the race. I really love the fact that setting my race goals also helps me to seek out friends and family around the country with whom I can reconnect. Seeing special people brings another level of joy and happy memories to these excursions. 
The Chi-Town Half takes place right along the lakefront in the city. I am sure it will be a gorgeous run, as long as the weather cooperates, of course. Let’s hope so, because after this wicked winter, I could sure use a weather reprieve. Time to visualize warm sunny 45-50 degree temps and light wind for April 6th in the greater Chicago area. Hopefully the race directors are not jinxing it by providing long sleeve hoodies as the race shirt. No matter what the day is like, I’m sure the race will be a great one to remember. 
So, I guess I just have to grin and bear these (hopefully) last treadmill runs as the freezing temps still linger and put on my best frame of mind as I pound away. The outdoor pavement will come fact, local meteorologists are forecasting temps in the 40s this weekend, so I may be able to get that momentum back after all. I think it is great, too, that this week's topic in the ww meeting room was moving for 5 minutes out of every hour. Time to think up some creative ways to make that happen and maybe even boost my fitness while I'm at it. 
One month til month til Chicago...time to get inspired!