Tuesday, December 31, 2013

... and fall down at your door...

Well darkness has a hunger that's insatiable
And lightness has a call that's hard to hear...

I went to the doctor, I went to the mountains...

I stopped by the bar at 3 a.m.
To seek solace in a bottle or possibly a friend
I went in seeking clarity...

We go to the bible, we go through the workout
We read up on revival and we stand up for the lookout

There's more than one answer to these questions
pointing me in a crooked line
The less I seek my source for some definitive
The closer I am to fine

It was cold. It was SO cold. And it was slow. I averaged just over 12 minutes per mile. I kept having to stop to rearrange the face mask that was freezing over my mouth. There was quite a bit of walking, and a TON of swearing. Did you know that mascara can freeze? And then it flakes off? True story. 

I don't usually take selfies during or after runs. I'm generally a sweaty mess. But today's run was such a 'win' for me that I did it anyway! Good luck to everyone in the coming year!

Monday, December 30, 2013


2000 miles is coming up. That's 2k in about 5.5 years. Which made me think all sorts of things about what has gone before...

15 years ago: I was dating a person who had been convicted of dealing meth, and had 4 kids by 2 women. I was in college, smoking about a half a pack of cigarettes a day. This may have been the time I had a shaved head.

10 years ago: I was recovering from a short stay in a voluntary-admission hospital, finding a lawyer to divorce me from my husband of 6 months. I regularly earned $500+ dollars a day as a designer and I owned a house on a lake.

5 years ago: After surviving a melanoma diagnosis, I was teaching myself to run on a treadmill in Montana. I was happily married, the owner of a thriving massage business, and an enthusiastic member of a rural community... a mere two months from starting a family!

If I was going to resolve to do anything this year, I would resolve to live in the future my past created. I don't mean that in a negative way. I mean that I want to appreciate where I've been so it can give me power in the future. This coming year I'm going to have the chance to combine all of those crazy experiences into really being useful to more and more people. I hope I can remember all that.

Friday, December 27, 2013


I want to be extra-sure that I don't under-calculate my total mileage. So after today's 4.0 mile run, this is where I'm at. So exciting!!!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

OMG You Guys

(Sometimes my brain thinks I'm 13)

That's all. That's all I wanted to tell you. In 8 miles I will have run 2000 miles post-cancer-foot. 

(I just wasted about 20 minutes finding out how far across the US this is. It's from Jacksonville, Florida, to San Diego, California, +/- 80 miles according to this complicated website)

Pay no attention to the pace though. I spent a LOT of time walking with this thing on simply to record mileage. Also, I was pregnant once. And ran a marathon in 6.5 hours. And... sigh. Most of the time I'm just slow. 

I'm planning to hit the 2k before next Wednesday so... yay!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Checking it Twice

A great job - enough money - stunningly perfect (for me) friends - the ability to self-motivate - good books - hot cider - pajama carwash afternoon - cookie dough - Christmas magic - thoughtful preschool teachers - LED lights - fuel efficient furnace

Tuesday, December 17, 2013


Every year I go on a hard-core rant during December. It goes something like this:


(also, please make this year the year you learn the words to Auld Lang Syne)

Reasons for my rant:
1. January 1st is my birthday and I want people to enjoy it, not "start their diet".
2. People feel like they have a pass the rest of the year if "I'll start on January 1st".
3. The end of the holidays is a terrible time to start something new- for most people, all of December was something new (parties, outings, family, etc.) and January would be a great time to resettle into a routine, not add something new.
4. People make fun of people who Resolve to do things on January first. Entire industries (like the personal trainer/gym membership/workout sign-up deadline) are built on the fact that people will pay for anything in the first two weeks of January. Some fitness centers (I might have worked at one) base their entire year's income on the first 1/2 of January. Did that make sense? They make ALL their money for the year in the first two weeks... you just don't want to be 'that guy'.
5. Once you've missed the Resolution window, it doesn't come around for another year.

My advice:
1. Make January 1st a nice day where you don't hold yourself to any new standards.
2. Pick a different day to start something new, and make that day (all year) your day to reevaluate. (I like Fridays... there are a bunch of them every month).
3. DON'T WAIT. Runner's World has a fantastic article this month about what to do RIGHT NOW to start achieving your goals (hint: most of them start with, "Drop this magazine and...")
4. Pick goals, and mini-goals, and smaller goals. But don't think you're going to live a different life starting a week from Wednesday.

End of rant.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Music Obsession

There are thousands of running playlists. And holiday playlists. And workout playlists. And playlists for whatever mood you've ever experienced. Isn't that cool?

I have my music divided into 5 categories: Metal (fun & upbeat), Earth (mellow but passionate), Water (quiet, melodic), Fire (blues, firey blues), and Ridiculous (i.e. The Christmas Macarena).

Here are the top songs from a few categories. Enjoy!


(not really safe for work)


Thursday, December 12, 2013

A Little Silliness

I don't like being too serious for too long. So the second post in this series (of things that random strangers have asked me to write about) is about shaving.

Men's shaving. Not women's shaving. If you have a few minutes, check out The Dollar Shave Club's website and watch their funny video. I feel sympathy for young people who are trying to make products and advertising stand out in the current culture of viral videos, mass email marketing, and social media. But these people look like they have a good product, and they definitely have fun marketing.

They made up an info-graphic for holiday shopping that was interesting. I always struggle with what to buy Stephan for Christmas, and this essentially tells me why he hasn't liked anything I've ever bought him. Sigh. Truth hurts:

Also... my blogging skills are not fantastic today. View the big graphic by clicking on this link

(I would write about running, or life, or anything else, but I've been diagnosed with The Flu and nothing interesting happens in my bedroom while I'm sleeping... I assume.)

My sense of humor - Hoarders reruns - RoadID - Mulled wine - Tamiflu

Saturday, December 7, 2013


Ever since I linked back to a big name blogger I've started getting requests to talk about things here. Although I'm excited to see what the mens' razor-blade company is going to want to say, there was another email that really caught my attention.

Heather Von St. James was diagnosed with mesothelioma eight years ago when her daughter was just an infant. (Mesothelioma is a lung cancer that is caused most often by inhaling asbestos)

Thud. Right? It's what I fear all the time when I'm quiet- that Sawyer would have to deal with a cancer diagnosis in our family. Here's the thing though... the life expectancy for that diagnosis is 15 months. So this lady is already amazing. Other interesting facts about Heather:

~She's absolutely beautiful
~She's a spokesperson for the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance
~She had a mind blowing surgery that is too much for me to write about
~Her family is amazingly supportive (see video link below)

I'm all about raising awareness, so here is a link about the risk factors for getting this disease. In addition to asbestos exposure, smoking, radiation exposure, and a virus can contribute to it.

Check out www.mesothelioma.com/heather to learn more about her story and the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance.

the doctor who took me seriously enough to remove the melanoma from my foot - the next doctor who spent more than an hour removing more tissue - crutches - the other doctor for watching patiently as I showed him each of the 12 spots I was worried about - a husband who tells me all the time that no matter what, I'm strong enough to get through anything

Friday, December 6, 2013

"I need a dolla, dolla... Dolla is what I need..."

Me: Hey, honey, Sawyer's at preschool. Wanna... ?? You know....??

Him: What?

Me: Run x400's at the park?

Him: You're joking.

Me: [giant cheesy smile]

This is what I learned about x400's
I've never done track work before. Heck, I've never even run on a track before. Ever. But the running magazine and the running group always talk about x400's. (Is that even the right way to type that?) So I run-trackered where the closest 1/4 mile stretch of road would be and planned to figure out what this was all about. The park is almost exactly 1 mile from the house. Perfect warm-up distance.

While we ran there I asked Stephan a few questions about [he calls them] "quarters".

When did you do quarters in school?
Whenever I was in trouble. I was a pole-vaulter, so running was punishment.

How does this work?
So when you get to the starting line someone says go. You sprint for 1/4 mile (or about 400 meters) and stop running when you get there. You can either jog again for interval work, or actually just stand around like this [he puts his hands on his hips and starts shaking his head and pretending to walk and puke at the same time]. Then when someone says go, you do it again. In high school the coach would blow a whistle every 2 minutes. So if you ran faster, you'd get a longer break.

You were all-out sprinting?
Um, I gave it like 90% for the first 300, then whatever I had left after that.

This is what happened when we did 4 x 400's
The plan was to run once around the path (for 400 meters) and then walk half way (for 200 meters) and then run again the next 400. That would give me plenty of time to catch my breath.

I had to stop about 50 yards before the first 400 was finished, which sucked. (It was also 18 degrees, and air temp was not kind to healing lungs). On the next set Stephan told me my form was all wrong for sprinting. I'm a heel-striker, and he says you have to sprint off of your toes. We took 200 meters to practice a little and on the second 400 I tried the new way.

I had to "sprint" pretty slowly, and the new form twinged my legs in new and exciting ways, BUT we finished the next 3 x 400's without dying! And thusly ended my first x400 workout.

Wool socks - toddler breath in the morning - having an athlete for a husband - being cancer free for 5 years - compression sleeves

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Wuv, Twue Wuv...

Me: I'm going out for a 1 mile run, and I can't find my Road ID. I'm worried because it's dark outside.

Him: Use mine [velcro-ing it onto my arm].

Me: Awwwwww! You DO love me! I just hope whoever finds me doesn't try to call my own cell phone first.

Albuterol inhalers - people willing to take risks - round hair brushes - Mark Wahlberg - ROTC (for teaching my husband how to iron things while I take fast showers)

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Life Advice

Things I have learned...

1. Never get a tattoo in a foreign country.

2. Never eat (or drink) anything for money.

3. Never Google your diagnosis.

Let's take #3 for a minute, and pretend someone says something like, "Hey, did you know that it's possible for a brain to get so discombobulated during mental illness that it can suffer permanent damage?"

Uh huh. And if you keep making that face it's going to stick like that.

A few Google searches later, and, bingo. It's true. Prolonged states of depression can cause irreparable damage to the hippocampus.

One way to avoid the above condition is to... now it might sound like I'm making this up, but I promise I'm not... list 5 things you're grateful for every day. List-making prevents brain-damage. Boom.

Snuggly blankets- warm beverages- Benzonatate- my husband- my son.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Hork * Snork * Accckkkkkk

"Mommy, do you have a hair ball?"

I wish. I was SO excited to complete my first ever Run Streak after Thanksgiving. But I can't even walk up the stairs without getting winded. Dang. Why are things infectious?

Side note: a family member (who may or may not have been drinking stiff Gin and Tonics) invented a word.


You know, I had a lot of dates in college that could be described that way.