Saturday, November 24, 2007

Loser blogger and loser runner

I'm a loser for not updating my blog. I'm still all about running with the girls and Crossfit.

But I'm a loser runner because I'm not doing the Seattle Marathon! I want to do it, and it was supposed to be my husband's first half-marathon. I was going to run it with him to support him.

Well, I have this thing about registering for races: I don't like to register until I know for sure I will be able to complete my training and get the race done. So that means I usually don't get the "early bird" price.

The Seattle Half Marathon is fairly spendy: $95 if you register late. And I didn't sign John up because, well, frankly he started out well with his training, then pretty much stopped training. He did that one 10-mile run two weeks ago, and I think hasn't run at all since then.

But since he's a guy, he's sure he could go out and run 13.1. To be honest, I'm sure he could (but it would HURT!).

Except when I told him what it would cost to sign him up yesterday or today, he said, "No way! I'm not paying nearly $200 for us to run 13.1 miles when we won't even win!"

Uh, okay. So, we're out. No Seattle Marathon this year.

I'm a little sad about that, because it is a really fun race. But there's always next year!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

More butt-kicking courtesy of Crossfit

Wow, tomorrow might suck. I hope I can walk.

Because Crossfit today was NUTTY!

First I ran about six miles with the girls...well, only one girl today, but still. We ran. And chatted.

(Okay, non-sequitor: I'm listening to an AMAZING remix of the Paul Van Dyk song "Let Go." It might be the most incredible song in the world. It's hard to focus on anything else.)

Then in Crossfit we did more of those deadlift-clean things with heavy balls, then a bunch of pull-ups. And then, jump-rope. We were supposed to do double-unders - two times around of the jump rope for one jump - but I couldn't figure it out. So I just goofed around and rev'ed up my heart rate.

So then for our competitive activity, we did this:

40 double-unders (if you couldn't do a double-under, do times 4 of regular jumps - so 160!)
800 meters row
30 double unders (or 120 jumps)
600 meters row
20 double unders (or 80 jumps)
400 meters row
10 double unders (or 40 jumps)
then 30 deadlift clean things.

WOW. And OW. And I was behind, but the instructor told me to push through my deadlift clean things to beat two of the guys who were resting in between.

When I was done, I laid down on the floor - not even a mat - and watched the world spin. Okay, that's an exaggeration...but it was hard!

And I loved every minute of it!!!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

10-mile shape: I've still got it

So I haven't run more than six miles at once since....well, the Ironman. And one of my life goals is to remain in 10-mile shape forever: I must be able to wake up and run 10 miles.

I put that to the test yesterday. And I made it even more complicated by going out the night before! I tried to convince John we should be in bed by midnight (we were meeting our friends to run at 9 a.m.).

Well, midnight turned into 1 a.m. which turned into 2 a.m. which turned into "I must be ASLEEP by 3 a.m.!" That one actually happened. But I woke up at 7:30 a.m. to make sure I ate properly and hydrated. So, I was going on four and a half hours of sleep.

But you know, it dawned a nice, warm, semi-sunny day, and I felt excited to run. We were running the Lake Young's Reservoir trail - a 10-mile loop that can't be cut short (it's literally around a fenced-in reservoir, so once you've gotten close to 5 miles, you pretty much have to go 10 to get back to your car).

I ran with Danielle, and John ran with his friend Justin. Danielle and I just chatted the entire time - typical girl run - and including one quick stop for a bio break in the woods, we did the 10 miles in 1:41. So pretty much 10-minute miles.


And I felt amazing afterwards! I spent the afternoon dancing with my kids - this club I like was doing this thing called "Shorty's Dance Party" where kids get to go into the club and they play non-offensive top 40 music and the kids dance and goof around. And then, even though I said I wasn't going to go out more than one night a weekend...well, this was the last weekend we're going out both nights. So we did go out dancing half the night. Again.

And today? Nothing! No pain in my knees, feet, or any other joints; no muscle soreness other than a tiny bit that I think is still left over from my Thursday Crossfit class, where we did about a zillion squats and again I destroyed my quads. So pretty sweet!

Oh, and John? HE DID IT!!! The most he's ever run was seven miles until yesterday - and though he did take a few walk breaks, he busted out the 10 miles in under two hours. I'm so proud of him!

(Note: I don't recommend barely running then going from seven miles straight to 10...but he's a man, he doesn't listen to me or any other advice. He's limping slightly today, but now we know: he can definitely do it, and a half marathon is his for the taking.)

Thursday, November 08, 2007

More nutty Crossfit adventures

So I've now been active/athletic for about three and a half years.

And in that time, I've managed to overcome a lot of pigeon-holing: I thought I was clumsy, slow, unfit. And maybe I was - but those things aren't a permanent part of me.

I like to think of the Spanish language: it has two verbs that mean "to be" - "ser" and "estar." The simple way to explain when to use which is to think of "ser" as things you ALWAYS are. I will always be female. "Estar" is used for temporary things - like feelings. I AM happy right now.

So I thought I was (using the verb "ser") not an athlete. Now I know that I am (using the verb "estar," because it could change) one.

Anyway, so this Crossfit thing has really shown me that I've practiced and become a runner and a swimmer. But overall athletics - being coordinated, throwing, catching, sports-type skills - uh, not so much.

And I guess that's why I like it. Because it pretty much puts me back at the starting line, and it's HARD, and I'm embarrassed when I mess up. (Like today, doing some deadlift and then some other move with a heavy ball.) I laugh at myself, and I get frustrated.

And then I practice some more and some more and some more. After some time, it happens: I can do whatever it was I was attempting.

Getting it feels amazing - even if I'm the slowest in the class.

It's awesome to believe that I CAN eventually, even if I can't quite yet. With everything.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Okay I am a bad mother!

We just got home and discovered something tragic: one of our fish has died.

So, I have to confess: these six fish are my first pets. Ever. I can't even keep plants alive.

So someone call Child Protective Services. After this fish death, I don't trust myself with kids!

Okay, seriously, here's why I am a bad mommy. My kids were discussing my nicknames for them, and Camille said, 'You used to call me a burrito!' And I said, 'No, Gabriel was the Baby Burrito Boy!' And Gabriel said, 'Yeah, that's because when I was a baby, mommy was very poor, and she wanted money, so she always made me go out on the street and sell burritos!'

Uh, yeah. Whatever. No word what daddy was doing while the baby was selling burritos.

I wrote all of this on a mobile phone. Now that my fingers are cramping, I'll say one word about exercise: Crossfit. Okay more words. The more I go, the crazy stronger I feel...and the closer I come to puking!

Monday, November 05, 2007

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Musings on parenting skills, and we got a Wii

So, on the comment drama, upon reflection it's pretty interesting to note how a negative comment can practically destroy me and a positive one gets a "oh, isn't that nice!" and I'm happy for like a minute until I'm on to the next thing. I feel like I have a fairly thick skin, but that comment about my parenting skills just got to me.

But actually - and I'm not justifying - I'm a good parent. I definitely have my shortcomings, but in general, I think my good parenting shows in the amazing kids I have. I am approached all the time by people who just love my kids - they're both bright and comfortable talking to adults and engaging and fun! They can be reasoned with and hold real conversations. They pretty much rock.

The thing is, I just won't dedicate every waking moment of my life to the kids. I see a lot of people become parents and suddenly transfer all their hopes and desires for their own lives onto their kids. Well, I'm 32 years old and have a ton of life left. Sure, the next 14 years or so are earmarked for raising children. But that will not mean for me that I do nothing else but raise children. The going out and stuff is really about building and maintaining an awesome relationship with my husband - a cornerstone of a good family life, right. And frankly, other than the few hours a week I work out with the girls, I do nothing but work, raise kids, and play with my hubby. And those few hours of exercise and girl time are necessary for sanity, friendship bonding, and relaxation.

Anyway, one of my shortcomings as a parent is my inability to play. I don't like imagination games where we play dolls or cars or whatever. I can play games, though, but I'm not into video games. Um, until now...

Last night we had friends over, and we decided it would be really fun for both the adults and kids to play the Nintendo Wii. I've been thinking about getting one, so we ran out to the store and picked it up. And Oh. My. Goodness. How much fun! We got the sports games and the playground games, and all of us - adults and kids - played together and had a blast. My shoulder actually hurts from playing Wii Tennis! And I got my highest scores ever on Wii Bowling!

Obviously the Wii won't take the place of real activity - we went real bowling on Thursday, to the zoo on Friday, and ice skating today (ow my calves and ankles, by the way). But for indoor fun where we don't need to plan anything and can get to be a bit physical, it's great. And we have a projector in our family room, so there's no TV to throw a game controller at (only a 108-inch screen). We moved all the furniture, and voila! A perfect place for all of us to play!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Okay yeah I'm a bad blogger

I just don't have a ton to say in the off-season!

So here's what's up. In-season, my training was definitely interfering with my partying schedule.

Now, my partying is definitely interfering with my training schedule! On the weekends, I just don't feel like doing anything. And on the weekdays, it's all about me. I love running with my girlfriends, so I'm still all about that. And I'm all about competing with the boys from work in CrossFit. But my cycling...basically, if I didn't have to lead rides, I wouldn't be riding at all.

So actually, on a serious note, I have been having a bit too much fun. When you start to get the perspective that getting home at 3 or 4 a.m. is early, not late, something is a little warped. So I've decided in my never-ending quest for balance, that I am only going to go out one night per week, and I will only stay out as long as the music is good.

Lately, after we go out dancing, we end up at a friend's house hanging out until the sun comes up. That's just not necessary. So if we're not dancing, I think we should be heading home. I strongly, strongly believe that if I'm up all night, as a parent it's not cool to sleep the next day and not be with the kids. So I've been forcing myself (through the wonders of coffee and Red Bull) to stay up all day and be an extra-good mommy: I've taken the kids to the aquarium and to parks and all kinds of fun stuff the day after I stay up all night. And I can sort of do it, but it's really tough on John - he really needs more sleep.

So, no more. One night a week, stay out till the dancing is over, then go to bed, then wake up and be a good mommy. And I think that will help with being a good athlete, too - although my weight is down, my strength also feels down, and I'm sure that's all about not sleeping properly.

Oh, and I'll leave you with this: a very funny picture from my Halloween party last Friday night. John and I went as Kandi Ravers (what 16-year-olds strung out on Ecstasy wear to raves):