The Ozarks...not my running friend

So I went back to Fayetteville, Arkansas (go hogs!) last weekend. I was in town to host a baby shower (yes, it did go well thank you!). While I was there I thought, "I shouldn't spend the whole weekend just eating and hanging out I should workout at least twice." Which was a great in theory, I mean I had all the right motives. Did Fayetteville reward me for making the effort to include physical fitness into my trip - no, no it did not.
I got up Friday morning and went to Ricks bakery for a sausage roll, yeah i know that wasn't the best idea before a run but I needed one ok, and then headed to Wilson park for a run. Wilson park has this beautiful trail all around the park that is flanked with old trees and there's a little creek. Now, Wilson Park might be down right pretty but it definitely is not flat. I mean Fayetteville is in the Ozarks for crying out loud. You know what we don't have in Dallas - The Ozarks. So I have not been running up any hills to speak of unless they have been associated with the incline number on my treadmill - not. the. same. So here comes the first hill (feel free to close your eyes and imagine this with me) and I am not worried at all, until I get about a third of the way up the hill and realize that I am no longer breathing and it feels like the mob just made me some cement shoes to wear before they threw me into the lake.
But that wasn't even all Fayetteville had to throw at me! There was a storm blowing in - and blowing is an understatement. The wind tunnel I was running through was literally pushing me off of the sidewalk, seriously off of the trail. Bad. News. I might have been a little frustrated at this point but I was listening to a sermon Jennifer gave at one of the Tuesday night bible studies and that was keeping me in line. Good thing because the combo of the wind and the hills brought trial number three to my run....I lost my keys. I will say I did not wisely place my keys in a safe spot - I tied the rinky dink keychain to my shoelaces. I was about to finish my first lap of the six, I was planning on making, and looked down at my shoe to find nothing but the keychain. This does not make me feel good but I took a deep breath and turned around to retrace my steps. The "re-tracing my steps" move is the one where you walk real slow and look every which direction, stopping randomly to check something that glittered in the grass that turns out to be a coke can tab, you know the one where everyone who passes you gives you the "that sucks" face. Real fun. So, I walk a good third of the way back around the park and this sweet little lady stops me and asks if I am looking for something - I smile, nod and swallow my sarcastic thoughts of "Nothing in particular, I am real big into treasure hunts". Well this sweet lady says "Is it this key?" to which I reply " Yes! Yes, thank you so so much I really appreciate it!" and she replies with empathy of how she knows what it feels like to misplace something. Thanks, yup I'm old.
So in conclusion, Hills + Wind + Loosing Keys = dominated


Bump in the road

So, I haven't updated all 3 of you guys in like a month or so. Jeez, so many (by my account) running adventures!
I had a bump in the road other than not blogging about my running. I had a masso allergy attack that started the week before Easter.
Breathing was not easy making running basically impossible. When I say "basically" I mean I could have tried to run but lets be real I had a legit excuse not to so I didn't.
So my first run back was this week. I ran outside instead of on the treadmill because here in Dallas we have like 8.6 days of sweet awesome weather, you know that temp between freezing and hell on earth, to be outside and I need to take advantage of those sweet awesome days.
I did however at the end my masso allergy attack get back into the yoga DVD in the P90x series. If you remember I told you in my first post that I did about a P39X, now I like to do the arms video once a week and the core video when I feel like doing something besides running and then I'll do that abs video randomly. But anyways, I did "YogaX" (yes, the name is intended to be intimidating) and learned very quickly that I wasn't made for this either. Multiple times I laughed out loud at how awkward I must look. My favorite by far is the crane.
People this is not peaceful! It's incredibly difficult and is listed as an "intermediate" yoga position. Really? Intermediate? Go ahead and consider me a beginner. It's ok if you want to laugh when you look at this and image me falling flat on my face. I also laugh when I fall flat on my face.
All that said, I did enjoy my yoga time. It makes me feel tall for some reason. I get done and I swear I've grown at least half an inch. Next day I have shrunk and walk like a granny because I am so sore, but the half inch feels good for a couple of hours.
And as always, always athletic hubs has continued to be athletic. Another athlete in our home group asked Mat if he wanted to be a part of his team for the Fort Worth Mud Run. It's essentially a longer version of the Warrior Dash but you have to do it in boots and pants. Yup, boots AND pants. So no, I did not participate in the Mud Run - I know you are shocked.
So Mat's team of 5 had to stay within 15 seconds of each other and cross the finish line together. My good friend @Zaaaaack was awesome and came to take pictures of the event, and help me mock always athletic hubs (my favorite part of the day actually). We were able to see them in about 5 or 6 of the 18 obstacles. So here is some photo documentation for your viewing pleasure - feel free to add your own mocking comments.
One of my favorites! Thats always athletic hubs up to his arm pits in mud and getting splashed in the face with muddy water. Nas-ty, and awesome.
Crawling on his hands and knees in the mud. Bleh.
This is the first time I saw always athletic hubs since the start of the race when he was clean. Also the time I bent over laughing with all I had and saying "you look ridiculous!"
Since we are married, you know "two become one", I feel like I have also completed the Mud Run. Thank you for your congratulations on my accomplishment. Good thing always athletic hubs made up for the recent athletic failure of his other half.


How is this happening???

Craziness has snuck up and captured my friends and the hubs! Maybe it's stupidity, maybe they are addicted to pain, I don't know what it is exactly, but I don't like it. What exactly am I referring to? A race, a 5K (no thats not the part I think is crazy but I don't fault you for thinking so little of me) called The Warrior Dash, why such an intimidating name? Well because the race is stupid difficult. Check it:
"Welcome to America's most insane race. Warrior Dash lands in Texas for the first time in 2010 where 14 obstacles from hell await along this 3.51 mile course. Are you a warrior?"
Lets talk about said obstacles from hell and how I feel about those: 1) "resist gale force winds as you run through tornado alley" The accompanying picture is of a dust storm with a dude COVERED (all caps, this is serious) in dust. 2) "Traverse the gully on wooden planks" planks = skinny little boards! I can't even run straight on the treadmill. 3)"Rio Run, dash down river" I don't understand this, you just asked me to stay out of the water now you want me to run through it - I don't play Simon says, I do what I want (I really need an audio clip for what that should sound like, its not near as great when you type it). 4) "Forge your way through uncharted forest" I will end up running the wrong way, guaranteed. 5) "Straight Rush,navigate the slippery river bed" they want you to do this as fast as you can, I have a feeling my feet wouldn't be the only part of my body that ended up in the mud. 6) "Mud climb, conquer the slick incline" Mud. Slick.Incline. None of those descriptors match up for me with the idea of conquering unless the victory is theirs not mine. 7) "Mud slide, slide down a muddy slope" = bruised butt for days to come, no thanks.
NOW YOU ARE HALF WAY DONE! who's excited???
8) "Bunker Blitz, clamor out of the creek and up the mud embankment" you can't use the word clamor in a good way, its impossible. 8) "Hay fever, hustle up and over giant straw bales" I don't know if you have ever played on hay before, it itches and makes little cuts in your skin, so when you are soaking wet you have itchy, scratchy hay stuck to every exposed part of your body and probably some unexposed parts as well. 9) "Breathless Bog, trudge through waist deep water and over the logs" I laughed out loud when I read this. 10) "Splintering Spools, Scale the wooden barriers over the slopping terrain" Yes, now that i am wet, covered in mud and dusted with hay scaling wood structures is bound to go well. 11) "Cargo Net, maneuver over the cargo nets" If you are following along you should be thinking something like "Daaaaang, this race requires some serious arm strength." How often does running produce strong arms? Basic question really. 12) "Warrior Roast, leap over the warrior fires" Once you do this you can officially add "Carnie" to your resume. 13) "Muddy Mayhem, scramble beneath barbed wire as you near the finish." Incase you don't feel humiliated yet, get on your stomach, crawl through the mud and try not to inflict a wound which would require stitches.
And all of this for what? Well when you finish they give you a t-shirt, a warrior medal, and the most important part of all, a warrior viking helmet. And this my sane friends is why my athletic couple friends I mentioned in the previous post as well as fun Brueggs and always athletic hubs want to drag me through this nightmare...the viking helmet.
As for the part of the description of the race that asks "Are you a warrior?" No, no I am not, I prefer pansy over warrior.


Coffee - thats my theory

Hubs has been on the road a lot recently so I have been making my trek to LA (pronounced "la", in my own personal language) fitness all alone...insert sad face and big sigh here. Even though I have been going on my own I've been proud of myself for not slacking. I have been running farther, not so much faster but farther and not really complaining too too much - at least for me, thats the standard right?
Well hubs was back in town and we went to work out on Saturday. Turns out I was having an off day, even more off than my usually off-ness, and just down right quit running a mile before planned - I just could not go any more. Breathing? Not so much. Lead legs? absolutely. So when I quit something and feel like I got beat by the always athletic hubs my natural reaction is to be upset, ok fine angry, I was angry.
So he quits with me and we decide to do an arms workout as well. I have partially accomplished the p90x workouts enough to know the arms video by heart. During my arms workout I get a cramp in my left hamstring, shoot fire did that hurt! My angry instantly turns to being pissed off and what do you know cramp in the right hamstring! Now I am pissed off and basically paralyzed. I told always athletic hubs that I was basically paralyzed and he didn't believe me and the he laughed - other athletic hubs out there take it from me, that. is. a. bad. move. So I am even more pissed but I need his athletic knowledge to make me feel better so I gave him the angry eyes, he got the picture and told me to walk it out. We went to get some water and then jumped back into the arms workout that I suffered through.
So now bringing it back to the title. I have a theory on why my body revolted: Hubs made me go get coffee before we worked out. And by "made" I mean "suggested" and I complied, but made is my choice of word so there you have it - he made me. Then yesterday at dinner with the athletic friends who also run hubs trys to tell me that Lance Armstrong drinks coffee before bike rides on Saturdays...Wow, thats a great comparison - Me and Lance, we probably have a lot in common including our physical makeup and overall in shape-ness.
Coffee is the culprit and I swear to never give in to the hubs saturday morning coffee coercion before a workout again.


Listen Up You

Dear LA Fitness,
I love your workout facilities, I love that there are no-frills, I love that I don't have to fight huge crowds of Highland Park moms for a treadmill, but please please stop sending your trainers over to give me a sales pitch while I am working out. I am sure I look like the perfect candidate - a well-meaning girl who is working hard but obviously getting no where, but I have decided to get no where on my own instead of pay you to make me feel worse about my stagnant athletic ability. I am bad at telling people no so know that you are making me feel awkward. Do you not recognize me when I come in? Or do you think, "There's that girl who works hard but isn't getting any better and doesn't want our help, maybe if I ask her again she will change her mind." I am not going to change my mind.
It is especially annoying when you walk over and give me your cheesiest joke ( usually, "You know you could smile when you work out if you wanted, hahahhaha....not funny) when I am 25 minutes into my run and struggling to breath let alone politely deal with your lameness.
Thank you,
That one girl you continually ask to pay for training lessons


How to pick a treadmill

I am totally picky about which treadmill I use when I go to the gym. Why? Because lots of people can see me...yup...lots. Which is also why I go to the gym and pick a treadmill at not so busy times, like 8:30 pm. So in order of importance....
1) Scope out what's behind the treadmill - Is it more treadmills? Stay away, those will likely fill up and possibly with people who know what they are doing. Elliptical? Bingo, people come and go and they usually are fake working out, either they don't know what they are doing so they aren't really judging me or they are there for the show and will done in a few minutes (if you go to the gym and use an elliptical I retract all previous statements, I am sure you are working hard).
2) Find something closer to an end but not the last one in a line - My observations have proven that people walk in and automatically scope out the middle of the pack, no reason to start their workout with a laugh. Also, the person at the end is usually observed for multiple minutes by anyone who is waiting for a treadmill to open up. You get that "I know someone is watching me feeling" and if you are like me you can't deal with the pressure and start looking all shifty eyed and probably run a little to far to the right a couple of times and step on the part of the treadmill that isn't actually moving...problems. If you aren't in the center and aren't the one on the end you just blend in...perfect.
3) Find the best t.v. - Sports are crucial for me. These people are most definitely working much harder than me for a substantially longer time period so I am motivated to be at least 1/100th the athlete they are. While I prefer basketball this is applicable with all sports, recently I have been watching the Winter X games an have been surprised by the motivation snow sleds and snowboarders bring.
In summary, Who is forced to look at your rear-end? Am I making it easy for someone to observe my workout? and What am I looking at?
These questions will not make you run faster or for longer but if thats what you are looking for you aren't reading the right running blog...see blog name.


Even The Treadmill Knows

I knew that the "man that was a good run" feeling wouldn't last for long.
Last night I laced up, feeling like maybe it was going to be a good night. I got to the gym waited for just the right treadmill (tips on how to pick a treadmill's an art really) and started my warm up walk/jog. The treadmill picked up and a good 5 minutes into my run I was hurting, bad, like side stitch that makes breathing difficult kind of bad. This made me mad so I made the treadmill go faster, obvious response right? I figure I can run through it and be better for it later...wrong. The treadmill must have known I was over-doing it and 12 minutes into my run it stopped, not a "Hey, I'm slowing down you should start walking because I'm going to stop" kind of way but a "I'm done. I quit. You suck at this and I refuse to help you in this useless endeavor" complete halt kind of way. Result: I ran directly into the neat little bar that can tell you your heart rate - which in turn shocked me. Audible laughter from the folks behind me. Error message on the treadmill screen. FML.
Seething, I spotted another treadmill and tried to pick up where I left off. I set my top speed super high so it wouldn't make me walk for two or three minutes before I started running, this turned out to be a major fail. During my run I could not change my max speed only the current speed so every minute and twenty seconds or so I was sprinting to a 8.5 speed trying to slow that sucker down to something manageable. When it was finally over I left the gym defeated.
Today I will be doing an arms workout.