Thursday, September 29, 2011

Go figure

I've had a day full of go figures. 

Yesterday I ran and was full of things to blog about.  In fact, I knew in a split millisecond that my post would be titled: STUPID ACORNS.  Captivating, I know.  Today I sat down to write it all out & it just wasn't fittin' my fancy.  Just wasn't jellin' like I thought.  It's sitting in my drafts.  I'm sure the suspense will "kill" you.

Today there was a xc meet for my girls.  I really wanted to go.  A few things stood in my way.  We have a few other family activities going on tonight.  They overlap each other.  I know I'm this awesome great supermom, but I can't seem to figure out how to be omnipresent.  And since I can't clone myself either, I just can't do it all.  However, I do have a great support group of friends to help me out in such situations and I was able to cover that aspect of the situation.

Next was the aspect of getting down to the xc meet.  It's not too far of a drive (45 min. maybe), but I'm not a fan of going by myself or spending the gas money.  Our van is great....wonderful....perfect for us.  But that whole big honkin' ton of metal is not so great, wonderful & perfect for just me.  I'd much rather catch a ride with someone and give them some cash to help with their carpooling efforts in their likely fuel efficient car.  Plus, it would be much more enjoyable to have the company of someone for the ride.  After some calls, it seemed that many other parents were also not going for a variety of reasons.  Well, at least I wasn't going to suffer too much guilt for being the "only" parent not going to the meet.

I came to a point where I decided I just wasn't going to go.  The world was not going to end.  My girls would still love me.  And there is always next weeks meet to focus on.  To help curb any would be guilt I went to the store, bought them some snacks & dropped them off at school along with a nice note sending my regrets, love & well wishes of their race.

At this point in the afternoon I had a meeting with my mentor.  I switched my phone off and focused on our meeting.  Fast forward to 3 p.m., my mentor leaves & I check my phone.  I see that I have two messages.  Before I can check them Jim calls me.  I let him know with still a slight sense of guilt I was not going.  I just couldn't find  a ride, it just wasn't going to work, blah blah blah. I finally do check my messages & my good friend Angela sent me a message an hour previous that she could come pick me up at 3 p.m. to go to the meet.  WHAT!??!?!?  AHHHHHHHHHHH!

All of that thought, tormenting...GUILT and it would have all worked out.  I checked the time of that message.  It came in literally minutes after I had turned my phone off.  If I had gotten that message in a timely manner I could have still changed things and made it to the meet.  Because I didn't know it just wasn't going to work.  However, here I sit now (looking at my daughter, noticing she is wearing a tank top, yet has ear muffs on her ears....NOTHING to do with this post, just funny to mention) and am so glad that it worked out that I didn't go.

I don't know why I struggle with the coulda, woulda, shoulda.  I don't know why I struggle with guilt over such situations.  I have no idea why I'm even telling you all this.  That title probably doesn't make much sense.  Although I have on more than one occasion said "GO FIGURE!" today.  I'm tempted to delete most of this.  I figure though it's good practice for my writing skills.  Something that I need to constantly brush up on.  I used to be an avid writer, have boxes full of my pieces.  I even aspired to be a journalist just like my Aunt Elaine.  But that subject will lead me off on another rabbit trail.  So I'll bid you a good evening.  Don't get blown away (it's awfully windy out there).  And watch out for those STUPID ACORNS!!!!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


I've been on a cleaning binge today.  That basement MUST be tackled and tamed!!  I am trying to blog more, a little bit each day.  Doesn't have to be big & long or earth shattering.  So my inspiration just hit me as I was sitting down to do a QUICK check of fb.  I have to come up for air now & then, ya know.

I found this posted.  It made me laugh.  It's good to laugh & have a sense of humor.  My sunday school class was just talking about this last week.  How Jesus wants us to laugh & enjoy life.  So laugh and enjoy....

I need to get back to work.  After a ick night of sleep I slept in & skipped my morning run.  While the sleep felt good I'm now wishing I had the run done already.  I will kick myself even more if I ignore my urge to run at some point today.  The sun is shining, it's not warm, but it's not cool either.  Good, perfect, ideal weather.  Since it's day time I can even put in my earphones and not worry what is going to jump out at every dark shadow.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Siiiigh.  It is time.  I need to make an announcement.

I mean, it has been almost 2 months and really, I just need to face the facts & let you all know.  Sooner or later you are all going to notice anyway.  Somethings you can only hide for so long.  So instead of getting those off comments, weird, wondering looks or subtle hints...I can just spare you and tell you now.

It is official....I am growing my hair out.  Shocking!  I know!!

Now, if you have only known me for the last year or so, you have only known me to have short hair.  So let me show you this long hair that I speak of. 

Here I was the day I cut it short.  That is me on the left, in case you can't tell the difference between mother & daughter.
 Here is another snapshot of it long:

Although I have completely enjoyed a short hair cut...I really, really miss my long hair.  So it's time to grow it out.  Lucky for me, my hair grows fairly fast.  I'd guess about an inch a month.  While I still have a ways to go to get it "that" long again, it should go quickly.  I haven't had a haircut in almost 2 months and think I'm already rather shaggy looking.

So for fun and lasting memories I took a snapshot or two (or several, cause I was really having fun) of myself to commemorate this moving forward & letting go of the short do.  I may someday return to this look, but for now, while I can, I will love & embrace my long hair.

Note: when trying to purposely take a picture of one self, it never fails that none of them turn out like you want them to.  Here are two, to show off my hair as of today:

Warning:  I will likely on more than one occasion go crazy during this process of trying to grow it out.  It will be a complete love-hate relationship.  So if you see me looking like this, then you know why.
 I may at some point begin to resemble Cousin It.  I will need to go in from time to time to get a trim.  If you look quickly at this picture it looks as if my head is super transposed and turned around backward, like you are looking at the back of my head, yet my shoulders are facing forward.  I know, I'm so talented, you are jealous.

Extra note: sitting & taking pictures of self on a dreary afternoon is really fun.  Nobody is home to see me on the floor laughing at myself.  Sometimes, that is what we need....a little dose of laughing at one self.  Go ahead, try it.  Take some funny pictures of yourself & post them.  Have a  great day!!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Good Luck?

This weekend is the Quad City marathon.  I really wanted to run this race.  I really hoped that I would gain such momentum after Howl at the Moon that I would keep on going.  After running 38 miles in blasted heat, running 26.2 in cool fall weather sounds like a stroll in the park.

Two things kept me from doing this race.  My lack of momentum from previous race.  Yes, I am still running.  Plenty of that going on.  But enough of it?  I have no doubt I can just go run that distance.  But how well?  I don't want a bunch of races under my belt of simply just being able to run the miles.  I want to have a goal, reach a specific time, finish with confidence that I gave it my best.  Not that I just did the race.  I'm not ok with just enough.  I lived plenty of my years on this earth doing just that.  Sure, one can argue that it didn't do me a lot of harm to live under such a creed.  But I know (maybe not so much then, but now) that I have so much more to give.  I am capable of so much.  Just as I have so much to give as a mom, wife, homemaker, child of God, etc.  I have so much more to give as a runner.  However, that great big push of aspiration & go get 'em keeps getting tangled up in the reality of life with 6 kids.

My second reason.  Life is REEEAAAALLLLLYYYYYY busy crazy right now.  Believe it or not, we limit what our kids can do.  We tell them no to plenty of activities and things they want to do.  And we are still busy crazy.  We can not get around the fact that there are 8 of us & our schedules to balance out.  Fall is a particular heavy time for us.  I really didn't think that adding a big race right now was going to help with that craziness.  On Sunday morning the only thing I'm going to miss is church.  For me that is a huge part of my life.  I neither play that up or put it down.  Granted it is important, but really, I know very well that going into a building on Sunday morning is not what church is all about.  With me, personally, I will worship my Lord just as well, maybe even better, trotting down the street with thousands of other surrounding me while doing a race.  Assuming I skip said church service there is still the mentality of a big race that preoccupies my mind, the preparation, the recovery, etc.  Do I really need this to, again, simply do a race for the sake of saying I did a race?  I think you know the answer as well as I do.  Even though it eats at me to some degree I know what I need to do....skip the race.

All is not lost though.  I have a few other big races on my radar that can help quench my thirst for a big fall race.  I promise to keep you posted on those possibilities.

I have plenty of friends who ARE running the QC half & full marathon.  (I should add that I considered running "just the half", but same principles applied).  I saw one of those friends & wished him good luck.  I did it without thinking.  I am so excited for this friend.  I have been following his blog and being the understanding running friend that I am, I am SO EXCITED and PUMPED for him.  What struck me later though is why did I wish him good luck.  I chuckle because I say that so automatically and yet I know that I really don't believe in "good luck".  He has worked long & hard & trained for this marathon.  God has created in him this love & passion for running & for being just who he is while out there pounding out those miles.  That sounds nothing like luck to me.  I doubt any of this stuck his mind when he heard my well wishes.  Even if he did, he knew what I meant.  It's just another cliche statement that we often rattle off without thinking.  Besides some people do believe in luck and have a different perspective of the whole situation.  That's fine.  They can blog about it on their blog.  This is mine, I just felt like typing out my thoughts & sentiments on the subject.

So to all of my friends running the QC Marathon on Sunday I hope you have fun and enjoy the day.  Embrace whatever reason has you out there.  And well.....good luck ; )

Thursday, September 22, 2011


I have been busy with my priorities as I previously spoke about. For example, today I cleaned the carpets in the living room & deep cleaned both main level bathrooms. I was going to have lunch with a friend, but nixed that so I could have a good day of cleaning. I was also relieved when my mentor called & cancelled our regular thursday meeting. Relieved that I would have more time to clean. I did miss her company & our weekly visit.

I have other responsibilities that I need to also prioritize. That would have to do with the YMCA. My job there has taken a turn for the more. For those that don't know, let me fill you in.

Although I often say I am a stay at home mom, that is only partially true. Technically I am employed outside of our home. I have had this job for over 15 years. FIFTEEN!!!! Who woulda thunk it all those years ago?!?!?!? I started out as a fitness instructor. Really, I had no clue what I was doing. Since I had a pulse they hired me. In a nutshell, I worked my way to the top and at one point was director/coordinator of the fitness department. I still always have and always will instruct classes. Can't get me to actually stop teaching. Members likely will never let me stop either. I have quite the fan following there.

When we decided to be open to God's will for child 5 & 6, I knew I had to step down from that top position. My heart is always at home first and with the plan for more babies I knew I could not balance both. However at the same time, there was a need for training (one I created & insisted upon myself in my director position) and an opportunity to become said trainer. So even though the Y knew I was stepping down in one regards I was stepping up into another. One that didn't require nearly as much consistent hours and one that I largely controlled.

I received said trainer status and for the next few years trained many people in Health & Fitness courses offered by the YMCA. Slowly, but surely though my drive to get trainings done and the full on demand of 6 kids took it's toll. Although I still had my trainer status I had not done any trainings for 2 years.

Last year there was a big push in re-vamping the training system. I took many classes & webinars to keep my trainer status up to date. In hindsight I'm not sure why at the time, I had no desire to train. Now, I'm so glad I did. It saved me a lot of work, time & effort.

A few months ago I was approached & asked to consider becoming a faculty trainer. Another level of training that gave me the power to not only grant certification in said courses, but also train & approve other trainers in the same area. I was a little hesitant, but agreed to this process. So I have endured over the last week a very tough & rigorous training. (Ok, not really. I mean, it was a lot of training, but tough? & rigorous? Not really. I was just putting that to make me sound like a bada**). I've already done plenty of training over the last 6 years so it all came quite easily & naturally. I'd also like to think, this is just another niche I have. I can train. I can lead. I am faculty.

Thursday, September 1, 2011


I have put myself on rest for a short period.  A week or so.  No need to get drastic....yet.  That's the point though, to keep from putting into place drastic rest measures.

Remember that widdle bitty race I did?  The one where I ran 38 miles?  Yeah, one would think that I would need or should take some drastic rest after that.  And I did.  I mean 4 days is a LONG time.  Ok, not really.  But I didn't want to come to a dead stop.  I certainly was sore, but aside from that I actually felt really great after Howl at the Moon.  I have my eye set on a fall marathon.  Now is not the time to stop.  I was hoping to use my big surge of miles to keep my miles & long runs up.  I have not registered for this marathon.  Considering there is only a $5 penalty for registering right before the race, I'm willing to hold off & know that I am for sure going to race.  That whole topic of paying/registering for a race could easily be a whole different post.  So I'll stop there.

In my opinion, when you are sore, the best thing you can do is move.  I know it's earth shattering pain to simply stand up or walk up & down stairs.  Keeping still doesn't help though.  You gotta move.  Get that lactic acid build up in your muscles to break up & get it out of your system.  I am the mom, that when my babies got their shots, I gave them a big dose of Tylenol then sat there & massaged the heck out of their painfully knotted muscles.  Sure they screamed & cried, but I could see a big difference in their recovery & soreness from when I did vs. didn't do this.  Break it up!  While I'd certainly opt for a huge deep tissue massage myself, my checkbook does not so I have to do it on my own.  I massage the heck out of my muscles and move, move, move.  Yes, I scream bloody murder, but it does miracles in your recovery time.

All this helped & made it very possible for me to head out on a 5 mile run 4 days after that race.  I felt much better than expected.  I ran a few more times, but then began to feel a twinge in my knee.  I tried to shake it off.  After a run with my good friend Angela, I began to see that yes, I might have an overuse injury knocking at my back door.  Being injured and not run at all is like a death sentence to me.  Fall marathon or not, I still want to run.  Angela helped me see that I needed to take a break.  She might have also threatened me with a big swift kick in the rear if she caught me out running.  That is what a good running friend does.  I love her for it.

My knee was actually beginning to bother me when I wasn't running.  So I took this week off.  I have only lifted weights.  A whole other topic of keeping myself injury free.  And I have done some casual biking with the kids to and from school and about town.  Regular doses of ibuprofen and icing it every night.  I think it's helping a lot.  My true test will be when I go out for a run on Monday or Tuesday.  In theory I want to go out on Monday, but it's a holiday and I will easily hit the snooze button & sleep in because I will more than likely stay up really late on Sunday.  So if Monday fails I will definitely hit the road for a few miles on Tuesday.  Sort of like dipping my toe in the water to see how it feels.  Hopefully I will feel so great I will be able to cannon ball right into the pool of running.  But we'll see, I'm trying to be smart with my body & my training.

Thought I would share this picture of my cutie patootie baby girl who likes to be a runner girl, just like mommy.