Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Austin Marathon Expo & Race Recap

This is my second time attempting to type this up.  The computer I was working on froze when I got about a page typed up, then it crashed and rebooted.  And didn’t save a thing I had done.  Nothing.  All gone.  Ugh!  I almost gave up, but then thought better of it.  So, here we go!  Again.  Haha.


Alright…so where was I?  Oh yea…expo time!  The expo is normally held in the Palmer Events Center and is a pretty extensive expo as far as vendors go.  However, THIS YEAR, they moved to the Austin Convention Center and I’d say had less than 50 vendors, even though one vendor touted that there were over 100.  Yea, right.  Sorry, but I don’t think so.  I mean, I didn’t count them, but there was no way there was over 100.  Anyway, I got my packet super easy.  They emailed out our bib numbers the day before the expo started so I was able to walk right up to the booth that had my bib and retrieve it.
also ran into my friend Eva at the expo

After my bib, I went and picked up my very nice, lime green gym bag with an adjustable shoulder strap.  I love this bag.  Love, love, love it.  The only problem is that since it’s a gym back, the bottom is mesh and therefore isn’t going to be super durable for me since I want to use it for work.  So I plan to buy some rip-stop fabric, remove the bottom and replace it, that way I won’t be afraid of it tearing or wearing thin and all my stuff falling out.  But other than that little “issue” I absolutely am in love with this bag!

After that, I got up my shirt.  I did like the COLOR of the half marathon shirt over the color of the marathon shirt, but it’s still a really nice shirt I have already worn twice with pride.

There was a little virtual scavenger hunt at the expo.  They scan your bib and then they match it up with this little bracelet with a chip in it and you go around the expo to select vendors and scan your bracelet.  It was a little annoying because I had a hard time finding this one scan point, but I finally found it.

As I was wandering around the rather disappointing expo for a major marathon, I did manage to find a couple things to buy.  First up, of course, was the Greenlayer official merch booth where I bought a hot pink official hat (I always buy a hat now if there is one available for the race).  Next, I discovered the Run Janji booth where I perused their 50% off rack and found a pair of multicolored running shorts with a leopard print. 

The Cap10k had a booth and they were handing out these really nice keyrings for anyone that registered at the expo.  I went up and told them I was already registered and could I possibly get a keyring and the guy winked at me and slid one my way.  YAY!  It’s so pretty.  I have put it on my key ring right next to the Austin Marathon key ring I got back in 2014.

I also won a whistle from the Austin American Statesman newspaper.  I shall put it on my hydration pack with a small carabiner for use in an emergency.

The 2 things that I didn’t buy but kinda wish I’d had the money to buy were this little knuckle stun “gun” thing that was only $45 and I could get it in pink and it was small and easy to hold.  The other thing was this really cool sports bra by a brand called Handful.  But, really, I have MORE than enough sports bras so I really don’t need another one right now…so there’s that.  But it was really cool.  Something I’d be more inclined to wear after I’ve RElost the 15 or so pounds that I’ve gained back, of course. 

I got home and at this point, the night before the race, I have NO CLUE what I’m going to wear.  I was thinking I’d do what you’re not supposed to do and wear the pair of shorts I bought at the expo because they are so pretty, but I put them on and walked around the house a bit and I’m pretty sure if I wore them for 26.2 miles that they would chafe the outer part of my thighs.  I’m sure they’d be okay on a shorter run, though.  What I settled on, after trying on various things, was my INKnBURN red wave singlet and my INKnBURN “ISO” (unicorn) sport skirt with my Altra IQ’s…and some compression ankle socks to avoid blisters since it was SUPPOSED to be raining the entire race.

Thankfully, that weather report was a big fat lie.  But, it was still fairly humid and quite warm out.  Definitely NOT ideal for running a marathon.  Anyway, I got up dark and early and got my stuff together and headed out the door about 15 minutes after when I wanted to.  I got to the start area with 35 minutes before the gun but I like to have at least 45 minutes of elbow room, just in case, you know?  Anyway, I got to the start area and wedged my way into the 4:10 area to try and avoid as many walkers as possible, though there’s always a few unless you start with the elites…yeeeeeeaaaaaa…no.  I had my pace band all ready to go.

As I walked up to the start line, I walked past the Paramount Theater and they had a special message for all participants:

The first little bit as we ran down congress I was spot on my pace.  I felt great.  I was spot on my pace for the first 8 miles, actually.  Then I hit the 15k mark and my pace was starting to slip.  Not much.  Just a little.  Just a few seconds.  Then we turned onto Veterans Dr. and went up that little hill and even though I didn’t stop running, it knocked me down by over a minute over the pace I should have been going.  Then when we turned onto Enfield I slowed even more as I walked for the first time.  However, I was still doing “okay” until about mile 12-12.5, which is where I really started to walk.  At the half mark, I took off and threw away my pace band.  I couldn’t stand to look at it anymore.  Then I started trying to make it better.  I took a picture while making a funny face.

Shortly after that, I had my first piece of bacon.  Then a couple miles later I had another piece of bacon.  Throughout all this, there were also shots of beer being handed out.  I love running thru neighborhoods.  People stand outside their houses with all sorts of stuff…bacon, beer, margaritas, fruit, nuts, jelly beans, girl scout cookies, and so on.  During the final 5k, there was a group of people that were handing out entire, unopened cans of beer.  Yes please!  Have I ever told you how much I love spectators?  Well I do.  They are the bomb and they make a crappy race not crappy.  Like totally…between the wonderful, posts, messages, comments, texts that I got from friends and family during the rough parts of the race and my all the wonderful spectators, my marathon didn’t suck half as bad as it totally could have.
bacon #1
bacon #2
beer me!  why the hell not?!!?!?

That being said, I walked…a LOT.  I’d say at LEAST a total of 4 miles were walked…but probably more.  I had an official finish time of 5:31:13.  Worst. Marathon. Ever.  For me.  New person best at the slowest time?  Gotta think positive with this one as much as I can!  I have never wanted a marathon to be over as much as I wanted this one to be over, from mile 15 until the final stretch, I wanted it to be DONE.  Also, I have never, ever worked so hard for a medal in my 4.5 years of running.  Never.  So, I’m thinking of putting this medal in a shadow box and giving it its own special place on my running wall.

After I finished and got my medal and water and snacks (which weren’t all that great, sadly), I headed over to Burro Cheese and got me a fancy grilled cheese sammich.  This one had jack cheese and balsamic fig jam on it.  Sooooo good!  They told me that the first sammich they made was small so they made me a second one!  I love Burro Cheese!  They’re so awesome!

As I was taking the pic of my awesome grilled cheese sammiches, I noticed my Distance Challenge bracelet and was like “oh yea!  I need to go get my magnet!” so I headed over there to get it, plus some better snack goodies from the Distance Challenge tent. 

Then I headed down Congress to Lavazza to get a Nocciolato espresso (I think I spelled that right…it’s an espresso with Nutella and walnuts and whipped cream…and it’s amazing).  I did not order said espresso to go, however they brought it to me in a to go cup.  I guess they were trying to tell me something.  But they could have at least brought me a plastic spoon.  So I was a little peeved about that…but also found the humor in it.

Later that day, I found my official split times.  You can see the 20K is where it all started to go horribly wrong.  Before that, it was great, then good, then okay…then boom, the entire undercarriage of my running car got ripped out from under me.

And now the Austin Runners Club Distance Challenge is COMPLETE!  I excelled at 4 of the 5 races and I’m pretty happy with that. 

Monday night after the marathon, I decided to just check and see if the official photos were ready yet and they seemed to be ready!  And they had an amazingly awesome deal where I could download ALL of my images for just $30!!!  So I did!  That’s just a kick ass deal, I couldn’t take the chance that the price would go up in a couple days.  There were instantly like 4 or 5 that were favorites of mine.  The vast majority of my pictures look pretty good!  and that’s saying something because usually a couple are good and the rest are horrible.  These photographers were really good this time around and I’m quite happy with my photos!  And, in no particular order...
obviously just crossed the finish line as I'm stopping my garmin
this guy looks like he's annoyed I'm running...HA!
kinda annoyed she didn't get the whole backdrop in the picture...it was pretty
putting on the breaks
running thru UT campus
my favorite official photo ever...looks like a paparazzi shot!  lmao!
happy to be done
so happy this photographer got this whole backdrop as it's amazing!
happy to be almost to the finish line!!!


Monday, February 20, 2017

Pre & Post Marathon

Thursday morning, I had the review of my gait analysis filming with my PT at RunLab.  I’m coming along fantastically (or, to use his phrase, I’m doing awesome).  During my initial gait analysis, my hip drop on the right side was 10° (borderline excessive/severe).  Now, it’s just 4° (borderline normal/acceptable).  So we discussed options as far as how to move forward.  Obviously, I could just stop therapy now and call it good.  Or I could continue with how it’s been and just do maintenance.  OR, I could switch gears and we can start working on speed and power!  If you can’t tell by the exclamation point, I’m choosing speed and power!  My stride is pretty shallow and close, so we’re going to start working on opening that up and getting aerial with my stride!  WOOHOO!  He was going to have me do a fairly heavy workout, but since I was going to be running the Austin Marathon just 3 days afterward, he changed it to a soft tissue appointment instead to help relax my muscles.  He’s not as “mean” as Natalie is, but it was still good.  I got the go ahead from him to run 4 easy miles afterward. 


Saturday I had bootcamp in the morning and everyone was like why are you here if you’re running a marathon tomorrow?  Haha!  I drove straight from bootcamp to the expo.  I got some pretty awesome swag.  The shirt is pretty attractive and I absolutely LOVE the shoulder gym bag that all marathon participants received.  I’m going to buy some rip-stop type fabric and change out the bottom of the bag because right now it’s mesh and that won’t work.  I’m afraid it’s going to tear or otherwise come apart because I am now using it as my work overtime bag.  I also bought a pair of shorts at the RunJanji booth and a hot pink official merch hat.  Then I spent Saturday afternoon playing with my Project Life.


I went to bed late…as usual…Saturday night.  When I went to bed, it was 8 hours until the marathon was to start.  Oops.  Got up early and left about 15 minutes later than I’d planned to.  I really like getting to race start areas really early.  I’m terrified of being late and missing the start.  So I like to get to the start area about 45+ minutes before the race starts.  Double check all my gear.  Use the port-a-potty.  Get into my desired location within the corral.  You know, the usual stuff.


The race…well, other than the fact that I crossed the finish line without assistance, it sucked.  I’ll try to get a race report out soon.  But then, I have typed up race reports for so many races the last, what?  8 months or so?  And haven’t posted a single one of them.  Ugh.  I suck sometimes.  I’ll seriously try and get better about posting race recaps.  Maybe next weekend I’ll try and post the 2 from last month plus the one for the marathon.  We’ll see.  All I have to do for the ones from last month is add pictures and post. 


Sunday afternoon, I put together the majority of my Project Life spread for the marathon.  I used a 9 square (4x4 pockets) page for this one so that was fun.  I’m leaving 2 pockets empty until I get my official photos from the race.


Sunday I went to bed at like 9pm and slept until a little after 7am.  Then I went to my soft tissue appointment at physical therapy.  That was good, but not thorough enough.  I still have so many aches and pains and soreness.  But whatever.  It’ll get better and hopefully I want to run on Thursday and that’ll work out whatever soreness and kinks I still have going on.


After my soft tissue appointment, I drove to Joann’s where I, of course, bought some more scrapbooking stuff.  Then I went to UPS and picked up a small padded envelop that ridiculously required a signature.  It was 1 pack of tiny letter stickers.  I have no clue why that a) was shipped via UPS and b) why it required a signature.  They cost me like $3.  Really?  Whatever.  Then home to rush around and get ready for work.  I was lazy and didn’t do my hair with the pull thru braid.  I just did a quick bun since I was running behind.


OH!  I know what I’m forgetting to tell you!  A friend texted me Sunday after the race and I told him that it sucked and was my worst marathon.  His response?  “lol.”  Really?  Lol???  What on earth was funny about what I said.  Needless to say, it’s no loss to me to never answer a text from him ever again. 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Project Sara, Episode 1: What is Project Life?

It has come to my attention (and really, I should have realized this from the beginning) that not everyone knows what I’m talking about when I talk about Project Life, even if I’m posting pictures of my spreads.  My apologies for this oversight.  So, in this first “episode” of my Project Sara series of posts on here will be an introduction to Project Life.  I’ll start with telling you about a conversation about this very subject with a friend of mine.  She asked me what the difference was between Project Life and traditional scrapbooking.  So I said it like this, you know how all rectangles are squares but not all squares are rectangles?  Well, simply put, MOST Project Life is scrapbooking, but not all scrapbooking is Project Life.  I say “most” Project Life because some people do digital layouts and are, therefore, in my opinion, NOT scrapbooking even if they’re adding digital embellishments and things to their layouts before sending them off to be printed professionally.  I’m also not saying that hand layering and embellishing is superior to digital layouts, but it’s how I prefer to do it.
This is how Becky Higgins’ website describes it: “Project Life® is an ultra-simple, ├╝ber-stylish solution for getting your photos off your phone and computer, out of boxes, and into albums. Gone are the days of cutting, pasting, buying oodles of supplies, and spending hours on an album. Or even hours on just one page.”  (FYI, I and a lot of people that do Project Life still do buy oodles of supplies.  It’s all personal preference as to how you want to do your album, just know it’s not “required” like it is in traditional scrapbooking.)
Okay.  So, what exactly is Project Life?  It’s a concept created by a lady named Becky Higgins.  It’s a way of chronicling your life.  The vast majority of people that do a Project Life…project…do it week by week, so you have weeks 1 thru 52 in your album if you do it that way.  However, I do not follow this method.  I will have a title card for the month (instead of one for each week of the year) and then just chronicle my month until the next month starts, and I start that with, of course, the title card for that month and so on.  The basic idea of Project Life is to simplify while still having elements of tradition scrapbooking…just on a smaller scale.
Project Life uses pocket pages.  Like traditional scrapbooking, but it doesn’t normally use the 12x12 size pocket page (unless you’re doing a digital layout, then you might use that size).  There are many different types and sizes of pocket pages to choose from.  I have been exclusively (so far) using the one that has two 4x6 at the top AND at the bottom of the page and then four 3x4 pockets across the middle.  This is the standard and most popular pocket page for Project Life participants.  I do have a bunch of other pocket page varieties and plan to start trying them out to see how I like them.  The one I’m most excited about trying out is the 12x12 page that has nine 4x4 pockets in it.
So, how is Project Life like traditional scrapbooking?  You can embellish your photos and journaling/filler cards like you would embellish a traditional scrapbook layout, just not so big and 1-event centric.  You can cover many different events all on the same page just by using different photos and embellishments and then you can tie them all together with a common theme like you used a certain type of embellishment (like tags, for instance…but it could be anything) in all or most of your photos/cards…or you use a common color with all of your embellishments. 
So, I hope this answers any questions you might have about the basic idea of Project Life.  If it does not, please leave a comment and I will do my best to address the answer to your question in a future Project Sara post. 
Also, I just want to say to Carina…I HAVE MISSED YOU!  WELCOME BACK!

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Karaoke, Handmade Gifts & Project Sara

First, this was supposed to be posted last week……..


When I stepped on the scale last Monday morning for my daily weigh in, I was shocked.  It said 172.  That’s now a re-gain of about 21 pounds since September!!!  Whoa.  Something needs to stop and something needs to change and it all needs to happen NOW.  I hope that this is the kick in the pants I need to get myself back in gear with losing weight.  I’ve been in such a rut when it comes to being motivated to lose weight.  Last week I came to the realization that while I still WANT to lose weight, I just don’t care right now.  I step on the scale every day and it has desensitized me to my weight.  Like, what I weigh really doesn’t matter to me…it doesn’t impact me like it used to.  That’s good and bad.  It’s good because I really shouldn’t be super focused on my weight anyway.  How I look, how my clothes fit and how I feel are way better judges of my overall fitness and health.  It’s bad because it doesn’t instill me with any kind of urgency to do anything about the fact that the number is slowly creeping up and up, higher and higher. 


So, as of Monday, I’ve cut my calorie intake.  This week, my meal plan looks like this:

• breakfast: yogurt fruit smoothie, 3 boiled eggs & coffee blended with butter (nixing the coconut oil…for now at least)

• lunch: chicken patty on 2 slices gluten free bread w/truffle mayo & deli mustard and lettuce leaves

• snacks: 2 cups of low calorie quark yogurt

• overtime snack: 3 apples, sliced


That’s at least 500 calories less per day that I’m cutting out so that should help a lot.


I’m starting to freak out a little bit.  I have LESS THAN 2 weeks until my next marathon and I do NOT feel like I’m prepared for the time goal I have.  I think I’m generally discouraged after having failed to hit 4:15:00 twice now.  So, while I’m going to wear a 4:15:00 pace band, I’m not going to kill myself trying to hit it.  If it happens, GREAT!  If not, then I’m going to be okay with it and not cry over it.  Okay, so I might cry at least a little bit if I don’t hit my goal, but that’s okay too.  It’s totally okay to be upset that you didn’t hit your goal.  But you know what?  There will be other marathons and Boston isn’t going anywhere, so I’ve got plenty of time.  Though, running marathons and training for them I think is really starting to wear on me.  My PT has recommended I consider dropping down to no distance greater than the half.  I’m okay with that, but I really want to run Boston once.  I need that unicorn. 


I think I’m going to start going to karaoke once a week on Sunday nights.  I went last Sunday to a new place and I really like it, called Top Spin.  It’s a nice and laid back place, lots of friendly people that can really sing!  So, instead of sitting on my ass at my desk on the computer and watching trashy TV on Sunday nights, I will go out and sing karaoke.  Besides, one of my New Year’s goals was basically to be more social and that definitely fits into that category!   Plus, I just really love singing.  Also, who knows, maybe I’ll get lucky and meet Mr. Right during a night of karaoke!  Ha!  Not holding my breath.


So, I’m super digging my new up-do for work.  The more I do it, the easier it is for me.  Also, it seems that it’s easier to do when my hair is slightly damp.  I don’t wash my hair every day, though.  Usually only on days that I’ve worked out and gotten all sweaty. 


I got some more pages done in my Project Life this past weekend.  I mentioned that in my previous post, but forgot to post pictures of the new pages.  When Amanda came over, she let me use some of her stamps, so I made some of my own PL cards, some with the purpose of lining them and using them for journaling.  I still need to color some of the stamps in to make them prettier.  I really love one that has a girl with an umbrella.

Tuesday, when I got up after my 3 hour “nap” between my overtime shift and my regular shift, I weighed myself as per usual and showed a 3.8 pound loss from Monday.  Yea.  Hello gluten bloat.  So, I’m just going to do my best to not consume gluten anymore.  If I want pizza, it’s to Russo’s I go (or somewhere else that I can find that has gluten free options).  And I just plain need to stop eating out more than once or twice a month, tops.


Thursday I had my physical therapy appointment where he had me do that exercise where I alternate intervals of increasing speed on the treadmill at 8% incline and various strength exercises.  Afterward ran 7 miles at a SUPER easy pace.


Saturday I had bootcamp and it was a really good class.  I’m really enjoying that class and I’m pretty sad that I’ll be missing 1-2 more classes.  I wish I could make it to the Monday night classes on the weeks I’ll be missing class, but it’s Monday night and, well, I’ll be at work.  Booo!  Oh well, it is what it is, right?  After that I had my deep tissue work at physical therapy.   That went fantastically.  Her appointment right after mine canceled, so she worked on me for an extra 5-10 minutes and let me tell you, that made a WORLD of difference.  I had like no back pain all weekend! 


After my deep tissue, I went to a place called Chi’Lantro (it’s Korean fusion food).  I got the kimchi fries, bulgogi burger and a grapefruit apple cider!  So yummy.  I was feeing the cider a bit, so I went next door to the thrift store where I picked up 3 dresses, 2 pairs of shorts and a canary yellow pair of 5 inch heels!  All for less than one of the dresses I got probably cost when it was new!

Saturday night, Amanda and I went to a coworker’s birthday party.  I wore one of the dresses and those canary yellow heels.  I danced a lot, ate cake and chips & queso. 

We left around 1am and I was home and in bed by 2.  And then I slept until freaking almost 10:40 Sunday morning!  I was supposed to meet my friend David at the Ethiopian restaurant at 11:30!  However, when I checked my phone I had a text from him.  He was sick and couldn’t make it.  So, instead I worked on my Project Life album, getting it caught up thru Saturday.  Put away a bunch of laundry, did the dishes.  Then I did Amanda’s Valentine’s present.

Amanda and I went to karaoke at that new place.  I sang 3 songs and she sang 1.  It was good times.  We both tried the pineapple cider…so good!

Monday morning, I had my follow up gait analysis filming.  That took about 25 minutes, then I was home shortly after 9…after stopping at the grocery store and buying the BIGGEST fuji apples I’ve ever seen!  I headed out for a 4 mile run at almost marathon GOAL pace, even though I’ve abandoned my goal of hitting a 4:15:00 finish at the Austin Marathon this coming Sunday.  I’ve decided I’m just going to do my best to hang with the 4:25 pace group.  That’s a 10:07 average pace.  I know I can do that.  I can do a 10:15…not super easily, but it’s totally doable.


I hit the self present jackpot Monday!  I got the new case (with Bluetooth keyboard!!!) I ordered for my new (free!) tablet from AT&T.  Super stoked about that.  I also got my order from Blitzy (mostly some super cute stamps plus some alphas and other sticker embellishments) and I’m very excited to use those to make some of my own Project Life cards.  I also got an order from Paper Issues (mostly paper…duh…but some stickers too), one of my orders from Peachy Cheap and my accidental order from the Disney Movie Club (I forgot to decline the monthly offering last month…oops) of the double feature of Pete’s Dragon (the original and the new one).

I’m thinking of semi-separating my posts on here.  What I mean by that is that I want to do separate posts that are about my Project Life.  I want to call these posts “Project Sara.”  What do you think?

And now a few random pictures from the last week or so.....

Monday, February 6, 2017

Stamping, a Tattoo & the Super Bowl

Let’s start this off with a bit of a back track.  I want to revisit Saturday’s trip to Plano with Jes and Manny.  I didn’t post any pictures in the last post and I’d like to do that now.  I had set a budget for myself for the convention and I exceeded that by about $25.  Not too bad, really.  However, I don’t need any more stamps for the rest of my life.  HAHA!  I’m sure that at some point there will be stamps that I find that I just HAVE to have.  But I don’t need anything for a good long while at the moment.  I got 3 embossing folders, a few dies, and a boatload of stamps!  I did buy some 12x12 papers, some wood veneers and paper embellishments, and a few alpha stickers from the Tim Holtz booth.  There was really quite a lot that I wanted from that booth, but the things I wanted were all so pricey, so I skipped them.
who can resist balloon animal stamps?!?!?!

For a late lunch on Saturday, the 3 of us headed over to Spaghetti Warehouse.  I got the Italian Burger and, other than needed probably a little mayo, it was amazing and delicious!  We all got a sample of the red sangria and it was fabulous!

As I mentioned, we went to the nearby Tuesday Morning post-convention and then after that we went across the highway to a vintage clothing and costume shop.

Okay, now onto Monday.  I was up around 6:30, had my coffee and prompted did NOT want to work out.  I was going to do an 8 mile run.  Nope, didn’t want to do it.  Then I was going to go to the gym.  Nope, didn’t want to do that either.  Instead, I made this accordion insert for this decorative storage box I picked up at 40% off from Michael’s on Sunday.  I then stuck all my clear cling stamps (that I could find.  I knew there were some more hiding somewhere, I just didn’t know where off the top of my head) in the slots.  So, now instead of being in like 3 or 4 different drawers in those drawer storage containers I have in my crafty area, they are now super easy to find and are all in one box.

After that, I decided I’d go to another Tuesday Morning and see if I couldn’t get lucky and find a Sizzix BigShot or BigKick machine.  I have that Spellbinders machine, but the 2 Tim Holtz dies I bought say they’re only compatible with the Sizzix machines and I’ve tried to use them in my Spellbinders machine and they’re not working.  I didn’t find a Sizzix machine, but I did find a We R Memory Keepers machine that was similar to the Sizzix machines.  But, when I got home with it, 1, I discovered it didn’t have its crank handle in the box and, 2, the dies don’t work with that machine at all.  So I’m returning it.  On scrapbook.com I found the magnetic base plate that goes with the Tim Holtz dies, so I’m going to buy that and see if that won’t get them to work with the Spellbinders machine I already have.  If not, then I’ll go ahead and buy the Sizzix machine and then sell the Spellbinders because I don’t need 2 machines for the same purpose.  That’s just silliness. 


After that, I decided that I didn’t want to NOT workout and I was already in workout clothes, so I grabbed all my stuff and went up to the fitness room at my apartment complex to do that speedy hill treadmill interval workout with the quad fatiguing exercises in between the intervals.  I did a total of 1 mile of sprints and then did a semi-speedy 2nd mile.  Oh the “hill” was an 8% incline, just in case you wanted to know.

I’m trying to stop chewing on and picking at my cuticles.  I’ve been good for a few days (since late last week, actually) about it and they’ve gone from an “angry red” to a more “mildly annoyed pink.”  I think something that really helps them heal is this homemade hard lotion my friend Kirsten (aka: “coach”) made herself and gave me for Christmas!  I love it.  I put it on at night before going to sleep and while it’s initially a little oily, there’s no gross residue or anything when I wake up like there always was with regular lotion.  Also, I really like the smell.  Without asking her what she used (besides wax, of course), I’d guess that there is olive oil and tea tree oil in it.  I should ask her for her lotion recipe because I really do love it and want to keep using it.


I’ve got a new hairstyle for work!  It looks kinda fancy, but really, it’s quite easy (just a little more time consuming than what I was previously doing with my hair).  I watched about an hour total of different videos on YouTube to make sure I got the process down pat.  I think it looks pretty good.  And everyone else says they like it too.  The look I’m going for is like a fluffy faux hawk.  The style is called a “pull thru braid.”  I don’t even know how to describe it, but if you’re interested in checking it out, just google “pull thru braid.”

I’m training in a new area at work and it’s a super busy, multitasky position.  I really like it as it makes the day go by SUPER fast.  I have to really pay attention as there is a lot to remember and, like I said, it’s very fast paced.


Thursday, I had physical therapy again.  My appointment time changed from 8 to 7am and the funny/sad thing is I only have to wake up like 20 minutes earlier to get there on time.  Stupid traffic.  During my appointment, John (my technician) did some slow-mo video of me running on the treadmill to check out the progression of my hip drop.  Back in December it was around 10°.  Now, it’s around 4°!  Woohoo!  Just think if I’d been doing my PT homework on a consistent basis how much more improvement I’d be showing by now!  He had me run with my feet fairly wide apart and that was super awkward for me and he said I looked pretty robotic.  So then he had me run with my feet slightly wider than my regular stride and that was way more comfortable for me and my hip drop was basically non-existent!  He also had me run with my elbows tuck into my sides more and my hands angled out a little bit.  It makes your back straighter and your lungs more open. 


Anyway, on my post PT run, I stayed parked at RunLab and just ran down the street in the same direction as I did for the Black Eyed Pea Run on December 31st with Rogue Running.  Except I didn’t go almost 12 miles.  Just 6 this time.  I felt pretty fantastic during the run.  I tried out being mindful of my stride and doing the slightly wider than my regular stride and the tucked elbows with the flared out forearms and hands.  I really think that helped a lot with how I felt during the run.  My pelvis definitely felt way more stable.


I really think that my lack of high mileage in January was quite beneficial for me.  During my run on Thursday, I felt fantastic and rested and like my body was saying “Let’s go!  Let’s do this!”

After that, I returned that second die cutting machine I had bought and then went to another Tuesday Morning and, of course, bought MORE scrapbooking stuff.  Haha.  Mostly alphabet stickers.


I meant to post this on Saturday but got busy busy.  I had my boot camp class at 9:30, but I had to show up 45 minutes early to do my “before” weight and pictures for the challenge program that the bootcamp class is part of.  Plus we did my “fit test” that consisted of 2 minutes of squats, 2 minutes of step ups, 1 minute of situps, 1 minute of pushups, and a bent arm hang.  I got a score of 64%...which is deceiving because that 64% got me a rating of “Very Good” which is like 2 spots above average.  So I’m pretty happy with my 64%.


Then I had to rush over to RunLab for my deep tissue appointment.  Boy did that appointment kick my ass this time.  Like seriously.  I think she bruised me this time.  But it’s in my best interests.


After that, I rushed home, changed clothes really quick and headed over to my tattoo artist where I got a little home state love tattooed on the inside of my right bicep!  Woohoo!  He did an amazing job with the splatter for the heart inside the outline of Oregon.  I really do love it.  And, it didn’t hurt nearly as bad as I was thinking it would hurt being so close to my armpit.  At one point I asked if it would be bad if I fell asleep.  I was so tired.  I didn’t fall asleep, though, in case you were wondering. 

Then the DirecTV technician came by to install my satellite TV service.  YAY!  He was really nice and even played with Vlad (one of my kitties). 


Sunday, after sleeping for almost TEN hours (told you I was tired), I got up and had my coffee.  Then I took a shower and hit the store for some grocery shopping.  Amanda came over around noon and we hit the road for IKEA where I bought a Raskog (a 3-tiered rolling cart that “legit” scrapbookers all have…so I guess I’m not a “legit” scrapbooker…haha) and some clip-on tubs that I have since put pens, scissors, an x-acto knife, tweezers, staplers, glue and adhesive runners in for easy access and so I can quit misplacing them and forgetting where I put them.  After IKEA we went to Joann’s Crafts and I got another decorative storage box that I later made into another accordion storage, this one for about ¼ of my alpha stickers (I might have an alpha sticker problem…lol).  And then one last stop at Marco’s for our pizzas.


Back at my place, we turned on the Puppy Bowl while beginning our crafts.  I made the accordion storage and then started work on catching up my Project Life album.  Amanda pulled out her clear cling stamps and I went through them and picked out a few and made some journaling and filler PL cards with them.  I just need to color them in and they’ll be done.


Monday morning I was going to go for a run since I didn’t do that Sunday morning.  However, I had to call AT&T to cancel my U-verse TV service.  I thought I’d be on the phone for like 15 minutes…tops.   But, I was on the phone for over an hour, but she bundle my DirecTV (since they’re partnered with AT&T) with my AT&T internet and my AT&T cellphone services.  She got me a $10 discount on my internet…and that’s a lifetime price for as long as I have my account with them.  And then she asked if I’d thought of adding a tablet to my service to which I said yes, then plugged my tablet in, thinking I’d need to give her the info off of it so she could hook it up.  But, she surprised me when she started talking about free shipping and whatnot.  Wait, what?  A free tablet…well, it cost me $1.07.  But, free shipping, free activation.  Yes please.  And from what I hear from some friends, the tablet I’ll be getting is pretty awesome.  So I’m excited.  She said I should have it within about 5 business days.  Yay!!!


Needless to say, I didn’t have time to run Monday morning…ugh!!!  But, my back still hurts pretty bad from that 10 hours in bed Saturday night (geez), so I’m not sure how well the run would have gone anyway.

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