Category Archives: Friends

Half-Merry Christmas Eve

Merry Christmas!

I started my Christmas Eve with a Half-Marathon distance run.

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I met up with a few of my friends early this morning for a celebratory group run around Downtown Montgomery.

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I think I finally feel like myself (almost) completely since the marathon two weeks ago today! The best part of this run was no pain!

Post-run breakfast was a Veggie Benedict at The Egg & I.

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O.M.G worthy.

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Merry Christmas and Namaste!

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Filed under Food, Friends, Half Marathon, Long Runs, pictures, Restaurants

This Week in Marathon Training

Eeek! Only 4 weeks left til the race. I’m not thinking about that though, I get too freaked out when I acknowledge that the day is going to eventually be here. I’m just going to continue to pretend its not happening.

My week has looked like so far …

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Of course there is still tomorrow left, which is a scheduled crosstraining day.

Monday – Yoga DVD

Tuesday – 5 Mile run

Wednesday – 8 mile run and 1 hour of Hot Yoga

Thursday – 5 Mile Treadmill run

Friday – REST!

Saturday – 13 Mile run

I was really looking forward to today’s run, 13 miles seems like a nice break between a 18 mile long run and a 20 mile long run. (I can’t believe I just called a 13 mile run a “break”).

I met up with a few of my running buddies this morning for a new route. I knew within the first 4 miles that this wasn’t a break after all. I felt sluggish and heavy and I just couldn’t find my comfortable pace.

Finally after about 6 miles I started getting my groove and then all of a sudden I started having a sharp pain in my lower abdomen. It wasn’t enough that I had to stop running, but it was noticeable and annoying. It bothered me the rest of the run.

We did manage to have some fun during the run though which made up for the difficulties.

Apparently Vanilla Bean Gu tastes delicious and I make funny faces when I eat it.

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We took a Gu/stretch/photo op break at mile 8.

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Thank goodness I had a fun group of friends to run with today because otherwise I don’t know if I would have completed this run.

After my run I went to visit my friend Jessica who had her baby yesterday!

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Jessica just completed a Half Marathon only six weeks ago!

Welcome to the world Elizabeth!

Lunch was a Hummus and Salad Plate from Zoe’s Kitchen with a side of slaw.

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Nom nom nom.

Now I’m nursing my painful spot that I have self-diagnosed as an ovarian cyst. After 800 mg of Motrin and 2 beers the pain is starting to ease.

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Filed under Friends, Long Runs, Marathon Training, pictures

Longest Long Run Yet, 17 Miles

In the past 24 hours, I’ve done two things that scare me. Can you guess the first one?

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I did yoga in the park! My good friend Marsha’s yoga studio held a free sunset session in the Shakespeare park in Montgomery yesterday afternoon. I’ve been trying out some yoga at home on DVDs and really enjoy it so Marsha talked me in to stepping it up a little bit and going to a live session. Loved it!

This morning I woke up to face my longest attempt at a long run ever. My training scheduled called for 16.5 miles, but I’ve always been a stickler about whole numbers so I called it 17.

I met some running buddies at the Shakespeare park this morning at 0:dark:30 to get started.

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Notice the darkness surrounding us.

I would have never dreamed that I would be out running before the sun came up.

Each of us had our own distances and paces to run today, so we didn’t stay together long but we followed the same general route. Barbara (the one in the pink) and I set out slower than the rest to pace ourselves for our distance. We followed the faster runners through an amazing route where we saw beautiful scenery, sheep in the field with shepherd dogs, fog hanging over a pond with a canoe overturned nearby … just beautiful quiet peaceful roads. We then crossed over into a business area and did a big loop around our outdoor mall.

Barbara and I stopped at McDonalds around the 7.5 mile mark to take a Gu, Salt tab and use the restroom before we got going again.

At mile 11 Barbara had a sudden sharp pain in her hamstring that would not allow her to continue. She insisted I go ahead and let her walk the rest of the way back. I reluctantly agreed after I had made several phone calls to find her some help and couldn’t get anyone on the phone. I figured I could run back as fast as I could and come get her with my car. Luckily one of our runner buddies (Duane) that we started the run with had a sixth sense to check on us and drove by shortly after Barbara’s injury occurred.

I ran 3 more miles alone. Then I got lost. Really lost.

I stopped and stood on the street corner trying to navigate my way back to the park with my phone when Drew appeared out of nowhere. These men sure saved the day today. I ran the final 3 miles back to the park with Drew … at more his pace than mine, to finish out the 17 total.

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Splits were:

9:36 – 9:02 – 9:08 – 9:11 – 9:05 – 9:05 – 9:14 – 9:26 – 9:25 – 9:31 – 9:21 – 9:38 – 9:00 – 8:46 – 8:12 – 8:19 – 8:16

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The whole experience other than Barb’s injury was fantastic! I’ve never felt stronger or more accomplished than I did today. I’m going to kick that marathon’s ass!

The whole group met back up at the park and then Barb, Duane and I headed off to Starbucks.

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When I got back home I was so hungry I could have gnawed my arm off. I created some strange concoction that actually turned out quite well. I call it Quinoa Crusted Veggie Quiche.

I had about a cup of cooked quinoa left in the fridge which I layered in the bottom of a baking dish:

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Topped it with some sautéed veggies (onions, mushrooms and zucchini)  and then poured 6 beaten eggs over the top …

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Baked it in the oven at 350 for about 20-25 minutes and topped with cheese.

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I was surprised at how well the quinoa stayed together as a crust. I tried to get a good pic of the crust …

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Time for some more yoga stretches before heading off for work tonight.

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Filed under Food, Friends, Long Runs, Marathon Training, pictures, Recipes, Yoga

BFFs

Missed you guys yesterday! The BFF came down from Birmingham for a visit and spent the night. We so rarely get to see each other it seems like that there is just no time for blogging when she is around.

My best friend is Vanessa.

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We’ve known each other since we were 18, so about 10-11 years.

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Check out those glasses and those hideous bangs! Blast from the past!

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A few years ago Vanessa moved about 2 hours away, but we stayed in close contact. We surprisingly got pregnant at almost the same time, and both ended up having boys.

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Lincoln and Jackson were born only 6 weeks apart. And they were BFFs too, right from the start.

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Or not … but it got better.

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Yesterday we took the boys to the park to feed the ducks. They’ve grown up so much since those little baby pictures.

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They had so much fun playing with the racecars inside the museum together.

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We used some of the leftovers from “date night” and made delicious homemade pizzas again.

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Basically the same ingredients as last time plus a couple extras: goat cheese, feta, brie, calamata olives, sundried tomato, mushrooms and spinach. Plus some fresh herbs from Vanessa’s garden.

After dinner we bathed the boys and put them to bed while we enjoyed some adult time and a few more drinks.

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The one that looks like me is mine. Go figure!

Although it was a pretty subdued day we had a great time hanging out and letting our little ones develop their BFF-ness. But now its back to reality.

This morning for breakfast I tried something a little strange a different.

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Just follow me here …. I planned on making a bagel sandwich with an egg, but I couldn’t find anything else to put on it until … I randomly came across a frozen falafel patty. I topped the falafel with the cooked egg, a little spinach from last night and spread some tzatziki on a bagel thin and made a sandwich out of it. Probably one of the strangest combinations I’ve ever concocted, but it was sooo good! I’m not sure the egg brought much to the party, maybe next time I’ll skip the egg and call it lunch. 🙂

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Filed under Friends, pictures

Walk of Life 5K

This morning I participated in the Joy to Life Foundation’s – Walk of Life 5K. The Joy to Life Foundation provides free mammograms to medically underserved women of Alabama. Its a great cause!

I was really excited to learn about the Walk of Life and I helped create a team with some of the women in Labor & Delivery, where I work.

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From left to right: Amy, Ashley, Nicole, Me, Meagan and Leigh Ann. (Not pictured: Rivers, Melissa, April, Cheryl, Bonnie)

The walk was scheduled to start at 8:30 am. I had everyone’s t-shirts and race bibs so I planned on arriving about 30 minutes early to pass them out. When I arrived I realized the event was packed! Luckily I was able to find a parking spot relatively easily and met up with everyone.

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The largest pink ribbon in Alabama!

Nicole and I went for a quick bathroom break before the race started. I heard the announcements being made for everyone to start lining up. I  checked my watch and it was only 8:15. One of the volunteers for the event was in the line for the bathroom and assured me the race wouldn’t start until 8:30. When I came out of the restroom I saw everyone running past!

I didn’t get started until almost 7 minutes after everyone else. I’m still not sure why the race started so much earlier than the scheduled time. I decided since it was already going that I would just run this one as a “fun run” instead of a race. I paired up with a friend from work and we stuck together the whole time. We walked/ran the course in 33:35 (according to my Garmin, 40:08 according to the official time).

So much pink!

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I’m still peaved about the early start, but I did have a really good time having a more relaxing run with my friends.

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Its so hard to not squint!

Overall I’m glad I did the race and helped raise money for the Joy to Life Foundation, but I’ll definitely mark this one down on my calendar for next year as a “fun run”.

After the Walk of Life, I still wanted to get a good run in so I headed out to my favorite running spot and banged out a quick 5 miles.

I did 5 miles in 42:18 for an average pace of 8:28.

Lunch was a big bowl of Tofu Veggie Stirfry, I was HANGRY!

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On the topic of eating … I decided to rejoin Weight Watchers Online today. Not because I’ve really gained much weight back (less than 5 pounds), but because lately I’ve really felt that my eating was not controlled. My portion sizes have been ridiculously large and I’ve been eating far too often. If I was truly hungry that would be one thing, but I’ve been finding myself eating just to have something to do recently. Although my weight is healthy I know that my eating disorder (Compulsive Overeating) is as active as ever.

I felt much more in control while I was doing Weight Watchers. After all, loss of control is why I ended up at 260 pounds in the first place. For now I’m going to strive to lose about 7 pounds and then I’m going to begin the maintenance program. So here goes!

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Filed under Charity, Friends, pictures, Races, Weight Watchers

St. Patty’s Lucky 7K

I got up super early this morning to get ready for the St. Patty’s Lucky 7K (4.35 miles) at Huntington College. I was hoping the rain would hold off. Its been raining here for the better part of the last 5 days or so and I’m OVER IT!

This is my I-shouldn’t-have-taken-a-sleeping pill-so-late face.

I took a 3 hour nap yesterday and then of course I had a hard time getting to bed at a decent hour last night. Such is the life of a night-shift worker! I ended up sleeping from about 12:30 to 5:00.

For breakfast I had a Sara Lee Whole Wheat Mini-Bagel, half with peanut butter and honey and half with cream cheese and grape jelly.

The hubby and I met my friend Bailey before the race. I love it when friends run with me 🙂

I hate to say it but this was the most disorganized race I’ve ever attended. The run was scheduled to start at 8:00 and we all headed over to the start line about 5-til, then I find out that they are going to do the 1 mile race first and the race won’t start until 8:30. It was freezing cold outside and starting to sprinkle … and my dumb ass was in shorts and short-sleeves. The police escorts throughout the race weren’t that great either, there was actually a time that I had to stop and wait for traffic to pass because there wasn’t a cop in site.

Before the race a woman came up to me and asked if I was the one that was in the newspaper last week. She went on to tell me that her husband had found the article and encouraged her to read it. She thanked me for being an inspiration. How awesome is that?!

The race got started and it was barely sprinkling at first. By the time I got to mile 3 it was really starting to rain hard. I don’t usually mind running in the rain, but the raindrops kept hitting my contact lenses and making my eyes blurry. At one point I even thought I was going to have to stop because I couldn’t keep my eyes open to see where I was going. Somehow I managed to squint just enough to see a bit and kept going.

The course was beautiful. I love the old houses and landmarks in that part of town. There were lots of hills though that were tough! Loooong slow hills and lots of them. It was a workout for sure! Not to mention that my feet and thighs were so cold they were numb, it was like trying to run with an epidural.

I finished 4.36 miles in 33:45 (according to my Garmin).

Mile 1 – 7:40
Mile 2 – 7:37
Mile 3 – 7:38
Mile 4 – 8:02 (raining really hard!)
Mile 4-4.36 – 2:46 (7:37 pace)

Bailey and I looked kinda like drowned rats when it was all over, and thats after changing into dry clothes!

We hardly ever have anyone to take a picture of the hubby and I together, so we made sure to get one today.

We aren’t very photogenic together considering he’s a full foot taller than me. 😛

We stayed around after the race just long enough to attend the awards ceremony. I ended up getting 2nd in my age division (20-29). Yay! Atleast the day wasn’t a total bust 🙂

I was frozen to the core and the only thing in the world I wanted was Starbucks … and a hot tub, but I settled for Starbucks.

Skinny Cinnamon Dolce Latte … Mmmm 🙂

For lunch Tim made me a spinach pizza on a pita, it was wonderful!

I promised him Indian food for dinner. I secretly want it just as bad as he does, but I’ll continue to let him think I’m doing him a favor so I can use it against him later. Thats the way I roll! 🙂

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Filed under Food, Friends, pictures, Races, Running

Birthday Party Fun and NEDA Week

Yesterday Tim, Lincoln and I drove to Birmingham to celebrate my best friend’s son’s 2nd birthday. On the way we decided that since we couldn’t decide between Greek or Indian for dinner, that we would have Greek for lunch and Indian for dinner. A perfect solution!

For lunch I had:

A falafel wrap with a greek side salad. Yummy!

Jackson’s birthday party was Spongebob themed.

I was afraid there wasn’t going to be much that I would be able to eat at the party, since I knew there was going to be alot of crab dip, shrimp, etc. I was wrong! There was food everywhere!

That evil white chocolate fountain almost sent me into a diabetic coma! Between the Bahama Mama’s, the chocolate fountain and the cake I was feeling pretty sick. We decided that perhaps Indian for dinner wasn’t happening afterall.

The kids had a great time jumping, running, and playing ball.

It was the perfect day for an outside party!

Once we left the party I was really feeling down on myself. I completely binged at the party although I knew I wasn’t hungry. Every so often I do that, and I feel completely depressed, bloated and sick afterwards. I also start thinking self-hating thoughts.

This morning I decided I needed a healthy, cleansing breakfast. I made a smoothie in my pretend VitaMix again. It contained:

  • cherry tomatoes
  • clementine
  • spinach
  • cantaloupe
  • flax seed
  • carrots
  • V8
  • water

It wasn’t bad, but it was chunkier than I would have liked. Atleast I know I got some good vitamins in. 🙂 I also had a small container of Blueberry Oikos Greek Yogurt for protein.

After breakfast I sat down at the computer to do my morning ritual (check emails, bank balance, read blogs, etc). I read Caitlin’s Blog at Healthy Tipping Point and realized that today starts National Eating Disorder Awareness Week. I found this while I was perusing the site:

BINGE EATING DISORDER (also known as COMPULSIVE OVEREATING) is characterized primarily by periods of uncontrolled, impulsive, or continuous eating beyond the point of feeling comfortably full. While there is no purging, there may be sporadic fasts or repetitive diets and often feelings of shame or self-hatred after a binge. People who overeat compulsively may struggle with anxiety, depression, and loneliness, which can contribute to their unhealthy episodes of binge eating. Body weight may vary from normal to mild, moderate, or severe obesity.

Sounds like someone I know. Now I just have to figure out what to do about it.

Caitlin challenged her readers to list 10 positive things about themselves that have nothing to do with appearance in the spirit of NEDA week. Here is my list:

1. I changed my life through diet and exercise and didn’t use drugs, surgeries, or other means.
2. I’m a good mother.
3. I respect all people and accept them regardless of their religion, race or sexuality.
4. I’m a good cook.
5. I’m a good nurse.
6. I like to try new things and it has really opened up my life to new experiences.
7. I make sure to take time for myself everyday.
8. I can honestly say that I can do anything I put my mind to. I have been sucessful in everything I have attempted in my life.
9. I quit smoking after smoking a pack a day for 8 years.
10. I’m funny. 🙂

Try this exercise. Post your 10 positive qualities in my comments section.

Tim and I are taking Lincoln to the zoo today. I’m going to pack us a healthy picnic 🙂 Later today I have a 9 mile run scheduled. I can’t wait!

 

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Filed under binge eating, Eating Disorders, Food, Friends, personal history, pictures, Special Occasions