Monday, October 31, 2005

Happy Halloween!!

Happy Halloween everybody, from our house to yours! We've had a ton of fun this year playing dress up. I ended up as Batman this year and Brent ended up as Darth Vader. Pippin was a VERY unhappy bumblebee. He usually doesn't mind costumes too much (I think he enjoyed being a pirate last year), but the bumblebee outfit kept falling over his eyes and was a very thick (and hot) outfit to wear. We did turn some air on since we were all burning up tonight! Once we de-costumed I gave him several new toys for his patience. He did love the kids though and got a few licks in on his regular neighborhood kids (who are all girls, by the way). He's a total pimp (hence part of his name - we named him Pippin from the song "Big Pimpin" and also from the hobbit Pippin from Lord of the Rings). The weather here was beautiful today - high 60's I think. It's supposed to rain later, but it was a nice, mild evening for the trick-r-treaters. We ended up with around 35, I think. We used to have around 50, but every year we have less so I never know how much candy to buy. We did have a little Darth Vader, but I didn't have any competiton in the batman category. We went to work today in our outfits, and ended up being 2 of only 3 people dressed up. ( I work with fuddy duddies!!) Some people dressed up last Friday which I totally don't get since we can wear pretty much anything any day of the week. Bizarre. Anyway, I wouldn't care if I was the only person dressed up I love Halloween!! I think it's my fave holiday. Thanksgiving and Christmas always end up being such an ordeal and we spend most of it in the car traveling, so Halloween and New Years always end up as my top two. (We got engaged on New Years 97 and married on New Years Day 99.) Anyway, hope you all had a great Halloween and I'm going to dig into the remaining candy - YUM! I'll post about Sunday's 18-miler tomorrow!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Dorothy was a Runner

Hey guys! I hope you all had great weekend and enjoyed your races, long runs, tapers and rest periods, whatever applies to you!

Friday night we did some shopping around town. The 5 mile race on Saturday did have a costume contest (with cash prizes!) so we looked for some costumes that would be easy to run in. I had decided to wear my Dorothy costume, but I needed something for the ruby slippers. My usual ruby slippers are NOT running shoes so I needed something to go over my shoes. I've seen the little shoe covers a million times before but of course I couldn't find them Friday night!! We ended up making our own shoe covers out of some old fabric and glued on ruby sequins and velcroed it to my Mizunos. I had decided to have fun at this race, and not worry so much about setting a PR or anything like that. Brent bought some angel wings and a halo for his costume. This race didn't start until 11, so we got to sleep in a bit (always a plus!). The race was at Long Hunter State Park, about 10-15 miles from here. We went there last spring with Pippin for a picnic, but they weren't very dog friendly - a lot of areas didn't allow dogs (even on leash) so we haven't been back. One of our friends (a coworker in another area of our company) had also decided to run this race with his dad and one of his friends. He and his dad trained together for a marathon earlier this year, but he ended up with some injuries so his dad ended up doing it without him. I think it's pretty cool that they run together! We saw them right away, and got to meet his wife and 3 cute kids. We signed in, got our bright ORANGE shirts, and geared up at the car. There weren't a lot of costumes, but there was a devil, Minnie Mouse, Zorro and a few other costumes. It was CHILLY at the start! I was really glad I had worn a long sleeve tech shirt under my costume. We headed off and did a 1/4 mile out and back, and then headed towards the lake trail. Brent had said he was going to try to stay with me and my 45 min goal. At the beginning of a race (esp a non-Chip race) I start out fairly quickly just to get through the crowds before the path narrows. So, my first mile was 8:05. I saw Brent make a face at me - I guess he thought I was going to stick to 9 no matter what. Around the first mile he started to slow down a bit so I motored on. Most of the way I was about 10 seconds behind Minnie Mouse. She and I had great paces. My remaining miles were a little slower, and my Garmin GPS kept cutting out so I had no idea how I was doing versus my 45 minute goal. At one point I was near a mean guy who yelled at his wife when she stopped for water that she'd better come on because they were on pace to finish in under 43 minutes. Cool!! Around mile 4 a crazy lady caught up with me. She was a space hog. She'd stick right next to me, and then basically cut me off passing me. I can't stand people who do that! Then she started singing out loud - LOUD! Here we are on this quiet lake path with tons of beautiful leaves and this crazy lady starts belting something out. People ahead of us turned around because I think they thought she might be hurt. I finally lost her around mile 5, and also passed Minnie Mouse about a 1/4 mile from the finish. Drum roll...... I finished in 42:25 - sweet!! Since this is my only 5 mile race it's a PR. I filled out my card with my name and time and headed back down to watch for Brent. Right as I started walking down here he came so I ran to get his picture!! He's starting to get too fast - I don't have the time I used to to get set up for a good photo opp for him! Just as we turned in Brent's card here came our friend and his dad. I tried to get a pic but some people walked in front of me. After this race they were grilling hot dogs and they had a ton of cookies, fruit and soda to go with it. Awesome! We gorged ourselves and enjoyed the beautiful day until it was time for the awards. The costume contest was voted on by the crowd. I ended up making it through the first round. In the second round it was down to Minnie, the Devil, Zorro and a lady who was wearing a slip with a picture of Sigmund Freud taped to herself - a Freudian slip. I didn't even get it. Anyway, SHE ended up winning first, Minnie was 2nd, and the devil was third. I think the devil should have won - his mask would have been so tough to run in and he was one of the fastest people. The slip lady was a walker, and to me you should take into account their speed and how difficult the costume would have been. This race gave out awards 6 deep - gotta love that too! I've never been to one that gave out awards past 3 but I think it's a great idea! I ended up getting 4th in my group!! Yeah!! This is the second time I've been 4th in a race and usually that sucks because you're so close to a prize. I won't tell you how Brent did, you'll just have to wait and hear it from him....

After the race we headed over to our local running store, Fleet Feet. Everyone there is SO nice! It was time for me to get some new shoes, mine have seen their miles and I need to start rotating new ones now. I've been really happy with my Mizunos, but I'm open to other shoes, too. I tried on an upgraded Mizunos and a pair of Pearls. I ended up with the Pearls - they seemed more lightweight and my foot really felt more cushioned on the sidewalk outside. I didn't try them out in today's 18-miler so I'll take them out Tues night for my 5-miler. We picked up a couple of other things and did some other shopping before dinner. We buy the Entertainment book and Citipass books every year, and we just got our new ones last week. We save SO much money eating out with these books and have ended up trying a lot of places we would have never otherwise visited. We ended up at the Flying Horse for dinner. They have a really different menu with a ton of interesting choices. I ended up with the pasta with a tequila lime sauce and shrimp, and Brent got a pasta ravioli that had chicken and ham. I was torn between the pasta and a grilled salmon dish that had a mango salsa sauce - so I think next time I'll probably try that. Anyway, it was good and I would definitely go there again. It's right beside the Factory at Franklin where they have several restaurants and some eclectic shops. Most of them close really early (like 6!) so a lot of them were closed but we did get to go in a few. It's a gorgeous place, two wedding receptions were going on while we were there. I wanted to sneak in and steal a piece of cake but we weren't dressed appropriately. From there we headed home, grabbed some coffee and asked Pippin if he wanted to go for a ride. He LOVES to ride. When you ask him he gets all excited - he'll go from being completely asleep in his bed to running, jumping and crying! We rode around and looked at some of the Halloween lights - I love how people (including us!) are really starting to decorate for the holiday. From there we kicked back and enjoyed the rest of the night ESPECIALLY the extra hour of sleep from the time change. That's the best thing about the fall time change, so we might as well enjoy it!

I'll post about the 18-miler tomorrow and have some pics of our hilarious Halloween costumes we're wearing to work tomorrow. One of the pics of Brent made me laugh so hard I started crying and Brent was drinking some water and he spit it back up!!! (The 18-miler went GREAT - total redemption from last week's 17-miler. I ran the 18-miler 20 minutes faster than last week's wretched 17-miler.)

Happy Halloween!!


Fri - 1 mile am walk with Pips
Sat - 5 mile race
Sun - 18 mile run

Saturday, October 29, 2005

I've always wanted to visit Rio....

I stole this quiz from Plods.....

You're Brazil!

You're athletic, charming, and probably a good dancer.
Unfortunately, you don't really mind chopping down the rain forest, and you probably
consider homeless people expendable in certain circumstances. Of course, your
personality is so diverse that it's hard to track down exactly what you're like. You
definitely like Pele, the World Cup, and shouting "gooooal" at the
top of your lungs.

Take the Country Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid

Thursday, October 27, 2005

I really AM smelling BBQ

Today was a hella long day at work. It seems like whenever you have some time away the first day back is the worst!! One of my coworkers said she didn't notice I wasn't there until later in the day (ummm...if my laptop isn't there I'd say chances are I'm NOT at work) and that she had left me a cookie that she took back and ate once she figured out I wasn't there. WTF? Leave the cookie - it'll last another day! I love cookies!! No one ever brings cookies to work and I missed it. Sucks. Oh well. Tomorrow a lot of people are dressing up for Halloween. I guess their calendar is a few days off since Halloween isn't actually until Monday (also a work day) - which is when I will be dressing up. See what I mean when I say I work with some odd people???

Tonight I did a 3 mile solo run by myself. I wanted to run at a 9 min pace since that's what I'd like to keep in the 5 mile race on Saturday. I ended up not looking at my watch much and came back in at 27:07, so I was pretty happy with my pacing ability. It was really chilly (40's) tonight, so hopefully race time Sat will be a little warmer. The race is at 11, so we'll actually get to sleep in!! One of our friends from a different division in our company is also running in this one. We didn't even know he was a runner until we saw him at a race last summer. Small world!!

Last night when we walked I told Brent how our end of the street smells like BBQ every morning when Pips and I walk. A new BBQ place (Jim n Nicks) just opened about 1.25 miles from our house earlier this week. After the run tonight we were going to stop by there and get some BBQ to go. They had a guy in the parking lot giving out menus and when we saw their prices we decided to come back and enjoy the restaurant sometime this weekend. (Their BBQ is more than twice the price of the local dive we normally get it from.) Anyway, the guy said they don't even have a freezer so they make it fresh EVERY morning. I'm NOT crazy (well, about the BBQ anyway). So we ended up getting Chinese instead. I wish I could smell the Starbucks a mile from our house every morning. Yum.

Good luck to everyone racing this weekend! By this point in the week I'm always a little behind on blog reading so I can't think of anyone specifically racing this weekend but with all the Halloween races everyone I'm sure you guys are. Have a great weekend!!!


Exercise -
Thurs - 1 mile am walk with Pips, 3 mile run, 20 minutes toning/stretching (focus:butt)

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

I Heart Taxes

Hey guys!! Great day here, wanna know why? Today I didn't actually have to go to work, sort of. As a CPA in TN I have to get 40 hours of CPE (continuing professional education) each year to stay active. This means 5 days a year of sitting in boring classes and remembering why I have no desire to go back to school for anything accounting related. However, the teachers (usually) try to rush through so you get out at least an hour or so early, and it's a day you don't have to be at work! Today's class was actually sponsored by the company I work for. It's a big enough company that they try to bring speakers in a couple of times a year to minimize the expenses. No one else from my division went, so it was really like a day completely away from work. I got to see a few former coworkers and other accountant from within the company so it wasn't a bad deal. Our topic was taxes. Blah! What a boring deal. The lady who requested waltzed in and out of class and (tops) spent about 45 minutes in there. WTF? Over half the class didn't even come back after lunch. Whatever. I'd much rather be sitting there in a daze than sitting at my desk ANY day. I guess some people are just too important (or self important). One sourpuss CFO that I can NOT stand (never could) also waltzed in and out and of the 30 minutes he was actually in there he spent all of that on his Blackberry. He's seriously such an ass and I am SO glad I don't work near him. I have honestly NEVER seen this tiny Napoleon smile, ever. He needs to get into McDonald's ad campaign. Anyway, we got out nice and early and THAT's what I'm all about.

I came home and cooked a good dinner. We watched Tuesday's Biggest Loser while we ate. I swear that show ALWAYS makes me cry. Those people lose so much weight, it's such a life changer! I would never, ever go back to my sedentary ways. Life is so much more fun when you're active! Someone today asked me if I was active and I started to say "Hell yeah - I just hit the 100 mile mark last night for this month's mileage and I'm training for my first marathon" until I realized she was asking if I'm an active CPA! Oops!! Guess active means something different to everyone.....

This weekend we're doing the Halloween Hunt 5-miler. It's a 5 mile race at a nearby state park and is the kick-off race of the TN State Parks running league. The races will take place at different state parks all over the state. I think it would be a lot of fun to do several of them, and they also vary in length. On Sunday I'm planning an 18-mile run. Next Saturday is the Team Nashville half marathon, and that will be my long run for next week, and the first of my 'taper back' weeks as I build up for marathon training mileage.

Jon and Alejandra did awesome jobs in their first marathons last weekend! Stop by and read their really moving posts. I'm starting to get sad as many of you guys are finishing up your marathons. I know there are still several out there running NYC soon but who am I going to live through vicariously after that? It seems like there's a big lull between NYC and Disney. I've gotten so used to marathon reports from someone each week! Also, Brent B has a really funny post about starting run barefoot and he compares it to the video of Pippin with is boots on that my Brent had on his blog a few weeks ago.

Speaking of Pippin, he's a little frightened of the new rental car. He's never ridden in a car before so we took him out in it last night. He can jump up in the Expedition - he goes from running board to floorboard to seat. He won't jump in or out of the car - which is MUCH lower than the Expedition and even lower than our bed! He has to be carried. Very strange! I had a hard time remembering how the whole trunk thing works. I haven't had a car since 1999, so it took a minute for me to figure out where to put my groceries this afternoon, and to realize that cars don't have a knob for you to open the back glass up with! I've gotten quite comfortable in my rental and even set the radio stations today! I think we're going to be together for a while now......

See you later!


Exercise -

Tues (post blog) - 20 minutes toning (focus:thighs)
Wed - 1 mile am walk with Pips, 1 mile pm walk with Pips and Brent, 20 minutes toning (abs) 20 minutes yoga/pilates (back)

Tuesday, October 25, 2005


Hey guys! Tonight I did my Tues night 5-miler on my own. Brent's having some trouble with his arch, which is probably related to the wide range of shoe sizes he's been running in lately. His old shoes were too small, then his new ones were too big and hopefully his latest new ones are just right. He stumbled around a lot yesterday and seems to be doing better today, so hopefully he'll be in good shape for this weekend's Halloween 5-miler at a state park nearby. It was really, really strange running on my own tonight. Even though we run at our individual paces (sometimes) it's still really weird to start out on my own and know that I won't meet him on my way back in at the turn around point. When he first started running with me this summer it was weird to run with someone and now it's weird to run alone! I did all my training for the CM 1/2 Marathon alone. He'd drive by while I was out running and jog up and bring me water, or tape my name to his shirt as my "crew" just to crack me up, but I was still out there alone. I think I'd die training for this marathon alone. Three hours is one long, lonely run!

In other news we are going on vacation!! WOO HOO! We're flying to Philadelphia in about 3 weeks. Our plan is to go to Philly, lick the Liberty Bell, do some stuff in PA, swing through Delaware and Jersey, and spend a few days in the Big Apple. Let us know what stuff we should be sure to see! Our goal is to see all 50 states together. So far (in our 10 yrs) we've crossed off 27, and most of those have been in the last 5-6 years. We try to see 4 states a year, some years we do a lot better than others. Anyway, I can't wait!! It's been forever since we've had a vacation. We went to Vegas in March and to GA to rent a cabin for the weekend but that's been it so far and usually we travel a lot more than that!

Also, we took the beaten and battered Expedition to the body shop today. It's going to take them about 3 weeks to fix her up. We hadn't driven it since Friday and today it sounded really freaky, like there's something messed up with it. Oh well, redneck mullet lady is basically going to be buying me a new car! We ended up with a Pontiac G6 rental car. It's obviously much smaller than an Expy, but it's a pretty cute car. It's VERY hard to go from a massive SUV to a car. I'm so used to swerving out into parking spots that I nearly do a 360 pulling the car into spots. It cracks me up!

Well, I'm going to do my toning and stretching and then we're taking Pippin for a ride in the new car. He's been staring at it every time we go out, probably because it's the only car we've ever had low enough to the ground that he can see his reflection in. Ha!!


Exercise -

Monday - 1 mile freezing cold am walk with Pips, 20 minutes yoga/toning (focus:arms), 20 minutes kickboxing (focus: butt/thighs)
Tues - 5.3 mile run - time 44:26 !!!

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Change of seasons

Hey everyone! Thanks for all your nice comments/concern about Friday's pain in the neck wreck. We're very glad to be safe and 'relieved' that if this had to happen the Expedition and our camping trip are the only sacrifice made! To answer a couple of questions - the redneck showed NO remorse. She never apologized or seemed regretful in any way - only "upset" that "Nissan is going to be really mad at her THIS time". If it were me, and I made this mistake (because we ALL make mistakes) I would have been bawling and so completely upset that I created such a headache for innocent people - and could have REALLY hurt someone. I don't understand how she could be so empty of remorse - but one guess is that her insiders are as leathery and stretched as her outsides. Also, no one's airbags went off. I guess because ours was a side impact (and we have front and passenger a-bags) ours didn't go off. I'm not sure why hers didn't, but this is our first (and hopefully last) wreck so I don't really understand how all that works. I have a feeling I'm about to be really educated in how the whole insurance nightmare works. Thank goodness it appears she has insurance and one of our neighbors who owns an auto body shop said her insurance provider is pretty good.

Ok, so let's leave the wreck behind and talk about the rest of the weekend!! We weren't about to let redneck mullet lady "wreck" our Friday so we went to Outback Steakhouse for dinner Friday night with our camping pals P & S. Our original Plan B was to go to the new Cheesecake Factory that opened on Thursday....on our way there P called and their wait was 2.5 hours. CRAZY! So we went to Plan C and had a yummy dinner at the Outback. Brent and I have been to numerous Cheesecake Factories across the nation (Chicago, Vegas, Orlando, and prob a few more I can't remember) so we really didn't care. For a couple of work occasions I've even had a few sweet people fly in their Cheesecakes for me for the celebration! Afterwards we just hung out at their house and watched some telly. It was then that we realized it was our 10th anniversary! Ha! Not our wedding anniversary, but the 10th anniversary we started going out. (Our 7th wedding anniversary will be Jan 1st.) Sweet! What a way to spend the day!!

Saturday we slept in. It was really, really nice! Even Pippin slept in - instead of waking me up about 7 he slept until 8:30. I think it was around 10 before I even officially got out of bed. We decided to skip running Sat morning and head out to enjoy the beautiful day. We ran a few errands (including more shopping at Target - someone PLEASE stop me!!) and had a late lunch/early dinner at La Paz. Their food is SO good and they have a nice, large patio you can eat out on. It's Tex Mex and they have THE best cheese dip. A friend of ours turned us on to the place when he threw a party and had them cater it. There are 7 of them in various cities in the Southeast so if you ever run across one check it out. After we ate we did some more shopping at the Green Hills Mall. For my birthday Aveda, Origins and Victoria's Secret had sent me some really, really nice gift certificates so I ran in to cash in on my special gifts. They were really sweet deals so make sure you sign up on their mailing lists. Aveda sent me a $25 gift, Origins sent me $10 and Victoria's Secret sent $10. Not bad!! To top off the night we watched 40-yr old Virgin. It was pretty funny, but I had thought it would be funnier. It's no Old School. It's a renter, not a buyer. We printed out maps for today's 17-mile run and got some sleep....

So, the weather has changed here a bit over the past few days. In the middle of last week we had mid-80's. On Friday afternoon a cool front came through and dropped us to the mid-60's - which was actually really nice on Saturday. It was a beautiful day for t-shirts and jeans and a jacket at night. Today when we first got up it was cool, but also fairly sunny with blue skies and whispy white clouds. By the time we headed out for the afternoon run it was no longer sunny, the wind had picked up and the sun had basically set. From the start of our run to the end of our run the temperature dropped from 55 to 43. Uh, yeah. I knew it wouldn't be getting any warmer today but I didn't think it would be getting that cold! We created our running path using a map of the Vanderbilt campus and a running map of a surrounding neigborhood. We started out from a local running store and then headed down through Music Row and back up 21st. 21st is home to Vanderbilt and all of its affiliated hospitals, our fave Indian restaurant - AND - Ben and Jerry's. Yum! We ran the 3 mile path around Vanderbilt and then ran off the main road and through campus. What a beautiful campus! The buildings are very old and there were tons of leaves falling creating a beautiful fall run. There were chipmunks running around everywhere and I could just picture us on a sunny day reading a book stretched out on a blanket. We looped back around campus and took another trail through the campus. There was some sort of American Heart Association walk gearing up and they were setting up all kinds of booths and even had tubs of Dasani water all over campus. On a hot day we definitely would have borrowed some of those!! From there we started working our way back towards the car to exchange out our empty water bottles. It was so cold we really weren't drinking much, but around 10 miles I like to refuel just in case. Somehow we managed to time it perfectly and arrived back at our car at exactly 10 miles. From there we decided to loop through the neighborhood. I was having a seriously hard time running today. I think the weather (and some raging PMS) were a huge part of it. My arms have been hurting me ever since the wreck. It's actually from carrying Pippin around the hour after it, not from the actual wreck. He's nearly 30 pounds, so toting him around for an hour wears on you. Holding my arms in "running pose" kills me, so the run was not an easy one today. As far as legs, ankles, knees, etc - no problems. Today my #1 enemy was my head. I started having a rough time around mile 8, and continued the mental struggle until about mile 15 when I knew we would finish. From the car our plan was to head down one particular way until mile 13.5 when we'd be able to turn around and run back to finish the 17. About 2 miles in that direction the sidewalks ended so we had to make up some runs through the neighborhood. These houses are beautiful - old, early 1900's craftsman's cottages and A-frames, and some Victorian houses. They remind me a lot of the beautiful homes around Salem, Mass. If we decided to stay in this area, when we move next spring this is the neighborhood we'd like to move to. But man, it is HILLY! I swear we only went uphill - I have no clue how we missed the downhills!! We made several more laps throughout the neighborhood and ran past the Heart Walk celebration two more times before the run was over. We also tried out the gummi bears thing today. I have to say I liked it! I have a tough time with gu so the gummis were definitely much better and helped lift my angry mood. Our splits today were not pretty - we started out the first 5 or so miles right around (and often below) my 10.30 marathon goal, but then we slipped lower due to our mental battles, the stupid weather and the HILLS! Our overall average ended up just below 11.30 per mile. I don't think I've ever had splits that high!! I was cold for the last 7 miles, and once when it started to drizzle I thought about just laying down on the concrete and throwing a temper tantrum. So who wants to be my running partner?? Anyway, we made it - together - and I know next week will be much better. If you don't have runs like these how will you know when you've had a good run???


Exercise -
Friday - 1 mile am walk with Pippin
Sat - no formal exercise but lots of shopping!!
Sun - 17 mile run

Friday, October 21, 2005

Titan vs Expedition - AKA the camping trip that wasn't meant to be

Crazy seeing me on the 'net tonight, eh?? I should be on the camping trip I'd mentioned enjoying lovely fall foliage, right? Wrong!! Here's how today went:

7:30-10 am - Never-ending chatter of coworkers who obviously have nothing better to do than run their mouths. Headphones are cranked WAY up

10-10:30 am - Annoying co-workers take their 30 minute break (yeah, we're only given 15 minutes by law but somehow they're just twice as special or maybe just twice the size of regular ppl so they feel they have somehow earned 30 minutes)

10:30-10:45 - Take my own break with Brent to a)enjoy 15 more minutes without annoying coworkers and enjoy my state granted break. We've only started taking breaks this week and I have to say I enjoy it. And you don't even have to be a nasty smoker to take them! Genius!!

10:45-12 - More work with loud music to snuffle the sound of coworkers who STILL have no actual work to do.

12- Tell Brent I'm at a good stopping place and see if he's ready to have lunch. Normally we lunch around 12:30, but I was at an excellent stopping place so it didn't make sense to start my next task. Since we WERE going camping (sans Pippin) we came home to get him and take him to the kennel. I don't think Brent has ever been with me to drop him off before, he just doesn't enjoy that stuff. For some unknown, divine intervention reason today he did. We've been taking the Jeep (Wrangler) everywhere lately, but for some reason today we took the Expedition. Also, I normally strap Pippin into his harness with special seat belt adapter in the back seat, but today I just held him in my lap. So, off we headed to the kennel, about a 10 mile drive from our house. We're at the exit off the interstate making a left turn into the main road when this Nissan Titan truck completely blows the red light, slamming into us in the driver's side of the car at 50 miles per hour. I have no idea how she blew this light. This is a 4 lane road, very busy, and other cars WERE STOPPED for the red light. There were no skid marks or anything from her, complete oblivion. She said she 'just didn't see the light', she 'was unfamiliar with the area'. Man, I hope you never have to travel with this witch. We didn't have much time to react, everything happened so fast. Brent tried to swerve some but she was coming too fast. She hit us so hard he couldn't get out on the driver's side door, and the passenger door on that side is also 'sealed' shut now, except for the places where both the driver and rear driver passenger door is now gaping open. Doesn't really matter since she also ripped the running boards clean off my SUV and there's no way at 5 feet 2 I could get up into my car without them. I really, really think we would have been in serious shape if we were in a small car at the speed she was going. I don't even know how we would have faired in the Jeep, I sort of think we would have flipped over. Brent goes into these ballistic modes when stuff like this happens. If something is trying to hurt me or Pippin he becomes super human and will absolutely let you have it. He climbed out the back passenger side door and started yelling at this woman/total redneck (who seriously needs a bra and to get out of the sun) instantly. She didn't have much to say. Some friendly witnesses stopped to make sure we were all OK and to call the police. A city employee in the area stayed until he arrived. At some point when Pippin and I quit shaking I got out of the car to calm Brent down and have him call our friend P to say the camping trip was now off b/c the camping mobile was a little smashed and to call work to let them know what had happened. I also informed the redneck that we were about to go camping and because of her stupidity our trip was now off. And that we would be late going back to work. I wanted to make sure she knew that her actions have consequences. Sounds silly but I was pissed. Really pissed. So, the police officer got there, she told him she ran the light and he helped us finish pulling the running board off our car so that it would be 'drivable'. We exchanged insurance information and from the sound of her questions this was NOT the first wreck she's been involved in. She also kept saying that her car was leased and 'Nissan was going to be really mad at her this time'. Uh yeah, I really don't care - pay attention to major intersections and this won't happen!!! I don't know anything about leases, but hopefully they will stick it to her. Her car was a 2005. So, we headed out of there and back towards work to shut down our computers and call it a day. Driving back it sounded like we were in the Jeep because of the "ajar" doors on the driver's side. Nice. We were suddenly 'those people' we always point at and say 'so that's how our car would hold up in a wreck' or 'Oh, don't park next to them'.

We took Pippin to work, told our bosses this day was a bust and headed home. I always keep my new little camera in my purse so Brent had taken a ton of accident photos. We were going to print them out to take them to the insurance place with us. As we pulled in our driveway a car pulled in behind us. S, who we were going to camp with, had been in the area at a training class and heard what happened and wanted to make sure we were OK. Very sweet of her!! It took our minds off the trauma for a while which was great. We changed and headed over to the insurance place only to be told they have no actual reps here, that we need to call a 1-800 number. Well, isn't that convenient?? So we called from the parking lot, gave them the info, and they're assign an agent on Monday. It was 3:30 by now and we still hadn't had lunch. We stopped by the BBQ place for some sandwiches. We couldn't go through the drivethrough because that window won't go down SINCE A STUPID REDNECK SMASHED into my car, so we had to both get out on my side. Climbing over the console of an Expedition is NOT an easy thing!!

Tonight, instead of our fun camping trip we just went out to dinner with P&S. Oh well, maybe next time. I'm really impressed with how the Expy held up. It's making me re-think downsizing and getting something smaller. We're not sure if it's totaled, some other friends looked at it and said the frame looks like it may be intact, but the whole driver's side is seriously smashed in. It just doesn't look like my pretty SUV anymore!! As far as injuries go, my left elbow is scraped and I think I banged my right knee a little. Brent banged his left shin and Pippin even ended up with a little scratch on his chest, probably my finger nails grabbing him tight during the crash. But all in all we're VERY lucky.

Here are some pics, I am zonked and ready for bed!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Don't even try to put me in the zoo

Stolen from Cassie and ShoreTurtle:

You Are A: Monkey!

monkeyMonkeys are intelligent and agile, well-adapted for jungle life as they swing happily from tree to tree. As a monkey, you are a social animal who eats a wide range of food, is quick to learn new things and loves to climb. A monkey's tiny primate features are irresistable, as is her gregarious personality!

You were almost a: Parakeet or a Pony
You are least like a: Groundhog or a ChipmunkDiscover What Cute Animal You Are!

Woohoo! I love monkeys!! They're always my fave at the zoo & I've always wanted a pet monkey.

Anyway, tonight we've been packing for our camping trip. I've never been camping before, and I greatly prefer cabins with hot tubs and satellite TV so we'll see! I can survive one night, right?? We're going about an hour south of here, and 20-30 miles from there is supposed to be some good hiking.

Tonight we did a mid-tempo (9.30 min miles) 5.3 mile run through the neighborhood. We mixed it up and ran through a new subdivision we found about a mile from us that has a big loop. It was pretty nice, there were some good hills and the sidewalk was nice and smooth. From there we headed to the next subdivision over that I have YET to run through without having to daze some beasts. One day I'm going to drive through in my Expedition and just mow them down. Then from there back to our subdivision. The mileage worked out nicely, and there were enough loops that we didn't have to repeat/out & back too much. Then I was almost mowed down by a stupid minivan in our subdivision who was obviously not paying attention. You all have my permission to shoot me if I EVER own a minivan. It's like a sign of defeat in my book. "I no longer have style and I don't care how my automobile looks - it's for function". Ugh.

See you later, that is if I survive a night in the great outdoors!!!


1 mile am walk with Pippin and Brent, 5.3 mile run

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Powerball Countdown

Hey guys! Happy Wednesday!!

Not a lot to blog about here tonight. There hasn't been any change in our friend T's battle with cancer. She made it through the night and today they were in the process of moving her to hospice care this afternoon. Yet another day was spent entirely by the female vipers in discussing how precious their friendship was with her, and how they are the only people who should be allowed in to see her. As if. I never understood why T withdrew so much during her cancer treatments until now. She was trying to avoid this circus sideshow/gossip fest that these pathetic people feel the need to conduct because their own lives are so meaningless.

Our camping plans are moving forward. The plans right now are to camp on Friday night and then possibly do a 'strenuous' 10 mile hike on Saturday before heading back. I'm excited!!
Tonight we really didn't have much time to exercise, all of this week's activities have prevented us from making it to the grocery store. So, after we got home from the store we ended up taking Pippin for a walk. It was a beautiful night - the temps are perfect and the full moon is gorgeous. Pippin is pretty excited about the stray dog in the neighborhood. We noticed it last night as we went out running. Then he was still asleep across the street at one of our neighbor's houses when we walked this morning AND when we came home for lunch. He seemed like a sweet dog, so I let him run over to where we standing. He and Pippin ran around and anytime I tried to pet him Pippin would get jealous and jump between us. He was still in our neighbor's driveway this evening when we got home from work so we walked over to see what the deal was. He had followed her and her dog (Abby, Pippin's much larger girlfriend) home from their walk the morning before. He's been hanging in their driveway ever since. Her husband won't let her keep it & Brent's not letting me keep it either. She may have a friend who is going to take him, so hopefully this cute little dog will find a home. He's been fixed, so at some point he was someone's dog but he's pretty skinny now.

Just in case I don't get a chance in time, A Maria will be running her marathon this weekend!! Her posts have been hilarious all throughout her training, so everyone stop by and wish her well! Also, a coworker of ours, Darren, has started blogging so swing by his place sometime and welcome him to this addictive world. He's not a runner (yet) but he (and his wife) are gym rats in the weights section .

Take care and wish us luck in the Powerball drawing tonight! Can you imagine winning all that money??? We're playing 11 numbers tonight. Why not? It's not too often you have a chance (even this remote) to win that much money. I ran some statistical analysis' on the previous winning numbers to see what the best numbers are. Hopefully at least a couple of them will pay off, even if we just got the Powerball number I'd be pretty excited. 4 more minutes!


Wed - 1 mile am walk with Pip, 1 mile pm walk with Pip and Brent, 20 minutes toning/stretching (upper body)

Why Instant Messaging is a Bad Idea

Here's a convo between Brent and I today via instant messaging regarding this big new stray dog in our neighborhood. He showed up last night and has been sleeping in our neighbor's driveway ever since. He's a real sweetie.

rachel: Pips is booked, so we're going somewhere this weekend!
brent: or we're just cuddling on the couch
brent: :-)
rachel: Ha! Maybe we'll take the new dog hiking!
brent: lol
brent: i bet the new dog can run 3 miles
rachel: Ha! I bet he can run 26
brent: so... like we have running shoes and regular shoes. running watches and regular watches... running clothes and regular clothes... why can't we have a running dog and regular dog?
rachel: you said it baby!!
brent: ;-)
rachel: he is very sweet
rachel: and mannerly
rachel: like pippin
brent: no, sweetie. we can't keep him
brent: i know what you're getting at
rachel: but you said we need a running dog
brent: you laughed cause it was a joke
rachel: no i didn't. read back, i never said lol
brent: oh
brent: haha
brent: oops
rachel: i agreed with you
brent: well, it was a joke, just not a funny joke
rachel: that's one queer joke
rachel: don't you just love him?
rachel: (the dog)
brent: oh
brent: lol
brent: he was ok
brent: but he's too big for us
brent: and pippin is jealous
rachel: i think he weighs the same as pippin
rachel: it's just spread out higher
brent: we don't give him enough lovin as is
rachel: pippin can sleep in my lap and the new dog can sleep with you
brent: as much as i like that thought
brent: no
rachel: don't you feel bad for him?
brent: oh, i do.
rachel: he's down on his luck
brent: but he's a dog. he'll be fine
rachel: he may be a refugee who walked all the way from n orleans
rachel: i'm sorry if i care for the homeless
rachel: maybe he was meant for us
rachel: don't you watch lost????
brent: no
brent: i didn't watch lost
rachel: liar
brent: i have no idea what you're talking about
rachel: liar sqaured
rachel: squared
brent: misspeller!
rachel: mean
brent: so now you're not only tired of me... you're tired of pippin
brent: i knew this would happen
brent: i knew even he wouldn't be good enough to keep you satisfied.
rachel: now you're just trying to turn it all around and that's just mean
brent: nop
brent: e
rachel: i hope you're never homeless
brent: i know you won't take care of me
brent: or you will... for a little while
brent: until you get bored
rachel: i'll give you a bowl of water and a cup of food and tell you you'll be ok, you're a person/
brent: and i'll wag my tail and go on
brent: kathy abernathy will take care of me
rachel: ha!
rachel: it's becky. there's no kathy
rachel: we've only lived there 6 years.
brent: haha
rachel: ok. you're obviously not on my side so we'll talk later
rachel: cya
brent: bye

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Fast slow run

Hey guys! Happy Tuesday!!! I've been thinking it was Wednesday all day long and then I end up being so mad when I remember it's Tuesday! Crazy!!

Anyway, today was a really long day at work. Our friend T isn't doing so well against her fight with cancer. She's been in ICU for several days now and Brent and I went to see her last night. She was her usual, upbeat & positive self, but you could tell she was in a lot of pain. She's the most courageous, wonderful person I know. She's had a long, hard fight that will probably be ending over the next day or two. Of course everyone at work is talking about it non-stop. I know a lot of them mean well, but a fair share of them are just evil to the core and thrive on drama and being the center of attention. I don't understand why women are so catty. I hate the stereotype of gossipy women, but it really can be so true. Even on reality shows - the all women teams just self-destruct (like the Apprentice and Biggest Loser). I don't get it. Anyway, I wore my headphones all day so I wouldn't have to listen to their mindless, destructive chatter. If they would actually spend this energy doing their jobs or investing the time in their own families the world would be a much better place.

Anyway, tonight was our typical 5.3 mile Tues night run. I usually start it out slower and then speed up the last half. Tonight I wanted to start fairly quickly and keep that pace. The first mile went fast - just under 9 minutes and mile 2 was just over 8 minutes. Brent picked up the pace a bit and I let him get a little ahead of me. My legs just felt heavy and the anger from the long day and the general unfairness of life was all burnt out during the first two miles. Mile 3 was right around 9 again. Brent stopped at Mile 3 and told me to go on and he'd run back with me when I looped back around. Mile 4 was right around 9 and I picked Brent back up on my way back in. He stopped after another half a mile and I kept on going. I finished in 45:26, which is actually really fast for me on this distance. The avg pace was just under 9 minutes. I felt like it took me forever, so the actual splits on the second half are pretty surprising to me. When I got back in I did my yoga, just because that's what I normally do.

This weekend we're planning a camping trip with our friends P & S. It will really be nice to get away for a day or two. I've never actually camped before - I'd much rather rent a cabin and sit in the hot tub than sleep on the ground!! It should be fun - I look forward to toasted marshmallows more than anything! Maybe I can get some cider at the grocery store to bring along and heat over the camp fire.

That's about it for today. I didn't sleep very well last night and nearly passed on taking Pips for his morning walk today but I knew I'd feel too guilty about it. He'd probably appreciate the extra half an hour of sleep as much I would!


mom - 1 mile am walk with Pips
Tues - 1 mile am walk with Pippin, 5.3 mile run, 20 minutes yoga (focus:thighs)

Monday, October 17, 2005

16 Down, 10.2 to go

So, to continue where last night's post ended we had planned to do a 16 mile training run this Sunday. My marathon is still a REALLY long time away, but I'm totally type A so I developed my own training plan to make sure I'm overly prepared for this thing. I've always been this way. There's a project due April 15th? Mine will be ready Feb 15th. On two parts of the CPA exam I scored over 90. You only have to have 75 to pass. My extremely unsupportive boss at the time 'congratulated' me with a "Someone obviously studied too hard". Thanks, old fat lonely woman. Anyway, on my "Rachel's Marathon Plan Type A" I'm scheduled for 5 18-milers, 2 20-milers and 1 23-miler. That's what I mean when I say I plan to be overprepared (and probably injured if I can make it that long.)

I don't want to burn out on locations for all these long runs so we picked another new spot for Sunday afternoon's training run. While most of you were sitting down for yummy lunches we had a bagel + PB and headed out to run. (Don't say you weren't we passed a ton of yummy open air bistros and I was SO close to reaching in and grabbing some food.) I had noticed a fun run for the Nashville Striders where they were planning a run to pass a lot of the Nashville Guitars that are out about town. These guitars are a lot like the cow project in Chicago - they're big 10 foot guitars around tourist sights painted by local artists, or commissioned by a lot of the country singers. I've noticed them around town, and even though I'm not a fan of country AT ALL we thought it would be a fun urban run to try. The details on the Striders map said the run was 8.2 miles, so we thought we'd give it a try and then stop after Lap 1 refill our water and repeat for 16 miles.

We memorized the map and headed out. The run starts at Centennial Park, within .4 miles we had to cross busy West End Avenue. We had to stop and wait for the light. Hmmm. That never happens on the Greenway. We finally got going again and ran through Vanderbilt, then had to cross a very busy 21st avenue in Hillsboro Village (which is a lot of fun to hang out at in the evenings) & Belmont University, then up to Music Row and down to Downtown. We had forgotten there was a home Titans game until we got closer to DT. Since it was almost game time most fans were already in the Coliseum, but it was pretty fun to run through the crowds and see tons of people across the river already in their seats. From there we headed back up Music Row and back through Vandy/West End to Centennial Park. We changed out our water bottles and decided the course was a little too congested with traffic to repeat so we made our own path and headed back down Elliston/Church past Baptist Hospital, Hustler Hollywood, and back downtown before we turned back around. It was pretty warm out yesterday, and on the second half of our run we were really feeling it. There wasn't a cloud in the sky and not a lot of shade (esp between 12-2!) We made it back to Centennial Park around mile 13. I could tell Brent was near breaking point from the sound of his feet and the amount of water he was downing. There's a 1-mile loop around the lake at CP so I decided to do that a few times and finish off the run. Brent fell behind so I picked up my pace to finish, I was getting SO hot and tired. A couple laps around the lake (including several runs through some sprinklers - thank heavens for ssprinklers!!) and I was DONE. 2:48.05. Not too bad! Avg pace was 10:30. I headed back to the car and Brent was already there stretching. He stopped around mile 15 with some pretty bad leg cramps. We headed over to McDs and got some sugary sodas and stretched it out around the park before leaving.

I'm pretty happy with my splits -

.4 miles - 10.27 pace(I paused it when we waited for a traffic light and started all my laps from here! GRRR)
12.36 (this is when we traded out water bottles and I didn't pause it)
11.04 (BIG hot hill)
9.26 pace for the last .6 miles

My last few miles crack me up! I saw so ready to be done. On some of the first ones we slowed down for pictures and a lot for crossing major roads. All in all I'm very pleased with the run. The second half was a lot tougher because we really didn't have a plan. Next time I'd run more through Vandy and the neighborhoods surrounding to enjoy the beautiful homes there and avoid some of the major intersections.

Next week.... 17 miles!


Exercise -

Mon - 1 mile am walk with Pips AND Brent

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Beautiful Weekend

It was an absolutely beautiful weekend here in Nashville. There wasn't a cloud in the sky on Saturday. When Brent got up we geared up and headed out for some hill work. There's a subdivision about a mile from our house that's very hilly (it's actually called The Highlands). We don't get to run there much this time of year because it's always dark when we run and they don't have sidewalks or a lot of streetlights. It's straight up, and up, and you turn a curve and go up some more. Whew!! Once we leave the subdivision we make a turn through the park and back up a different street, then right on a major road and back into our subdivision. It ends up being a large loop with no repeats or out/back so it's a nice change from our normal Tues & Thurs night runs. We ended up running 4.66 miles at a pretty decent pace. Mile 1 was 9:38, Mile 2 (The hill portion) 10:10, Mile 3 (flat, flat, flat) 8:58, Mile 4 (steep hill plus traffic) 9:57 and the .66 was at a 8:55 pace. It was great run, after so many cloudy days it was fantastic to be out in the sun running again!! I think running in the dark so much now makes me LOVE the sunlight. There were a lot of people out working in the yard & decorating for Halloween so it was perfect morning to enjoy the fall weather.

Our main event of the day was Boston Terrier Day. Last year we went and had a huge time playing with the other Bostons. What we remembered last year was that everything was slow. All of the contests and group pictures were later in the afternoon. So, we slept in Sat morning (sort of - Pips woke me up at 7:30 for a bathroom break and I couldn't get back to sleep - which was not a pproblem for him and Brent didn't even know I had gotten up), went for our run, and then showered and headed out for BT day. It was slated for 10-3 and there was NO schedule of events provided on their website or on the emails from the organizers. We showed up about 12:45. They had already put the lunch up. Huh?? We had to ask if there was any food yet and this lady said 'Oh, did you want to eat?' Uh, yeah. The fat check I just dropped in your donation box says I've bought at least a few BBQ sandwiches for us and we were STARVED. Very unhappily she took the aluminum foil off of an extremely full tray of BBQ and made us two tiny sandwiches. Devil woman. When we got there they were finishing the costume contest and we saw part of the 'best trick' contest. Note to the people we saw: teaching your dog to carry a frisbee in it's mouth is not a trick. Seriously. And then that was it. BT "Day" was over at about 1:15. They started packing everything up and everyone left. We must have missed the group photo, too. I was really disappointed. Pippin wasn't because he got to lick a few BTs and jump on a few people. Since we had "allotted" BT day until 3 we went to the off leash dog park there at EW Park. Last time we went to this dog park it was us and two unfriendly pit bulls. Luckily it was swarming with tons of dogs and their people. We carried our lawn chairs and picked out a shady spot. Pippin is a little strange at the dog park - he won't come anywhere near us. He usually picks another family and will sit near them, run and play, and go back to other people. I've finally decided he does that because he's scared we're going to make him leave. If I try to call him he won't act like he knows me (or his name) at all. He usually runs from me and I end up tackling or cornering him when it is time to leave. Mostly he sat near another family, under a bench, until a group of big dogs came tearing through and sort-of cornered him under the bench. He's not a barker (he's a licker) and he doesn't like other barkers, esp when they're loud and in his face like these dogs were. He started freaking and barked and snapped at these dogs so I got up and rescued him. He sat in my lap for a few minutes and then decided he was safe to go back to his old spot. A little while later a little fluffy dog his size named Cocoa showed up and he decided he liked her A LOT. In the way dogs like other dogs. Cocoa felt like she really needed to know Pips better than that so she ran and he chased her for a while. Cocoa's owners were about our same age and sat over near us so we had a good chuckle out of it. Eventually we decided Pips was pooped and we headed home. BT day was a bust but Pips still had a huge time and he doesn't even know he missed the group pic. We also took him to the Pet Supermarket and let him pick out a couple of treats.

For dinner we headed to our fave Indian restaurant and on to Target and spent way too much money on halloween decorations. I'm super into Halloween this year so I got some lights for outside and then some garland and spider lights to go around our fireplace. And a skull that lights up. We found a bumble bee costume for Pippin. It's hilarious. Everyone should have a dog so they can dress it up! Then we headed home and watch Wedding Date. This movie sucked. It was boring and predictable, and was much better when it was called Pretty Woman and starred Julia Roberts and Richard Gere. We printed out some maps for this afternoon's 16 mile run and headed to get some sleep!! I'll post about the 16-mile run tomorrow. It was great, and we survived with only being nearly run over by a handful of cars.

Hope everyone had great races and runs this beautiful fall weekend!! Is anyone else craving cider?? Ever since we visited this place in Vermont a few years ago I LOVE getting cider in the fall. But it's just not the same from the grocery store. I've thought about buying some over the 'net from them but that may be just a little too obsessed.

Have a great Monday!


Friday - 1 mile am walk with Pippin
Sat - 4.66 mile run, walking at the park
Sun - 16 mile run

Saturday, October 15, 2005


So, what does every hip, 20-something young couple do on a Friday night?? Install a new dishwasher. Yeah, we live fast and furious lives!! We had decided to go ahead and get the torture over with so we wouldn't have it hanging over our heads the rest of the weekend. There's nothing like knowing in the back of your mind you have this terrible project to do sometime. It's really a pain to do, but mission was accomplished and it took about 2.5 hours to get the old one out and the new one in. Pips was a huge help of course, always peering in to see what Brent was doing, or standing on the instruction booklet as I was trying to see what to do next. So, we loaded it up last night and fortunately all seem to go well and nothing leaked! It's always weird to use a different dishwasher and try to figure out what should go where and how to max the space. We had the old one down to a SCIENCE! We've been in this house 6 yrs and 15 days (we moved in on my b-day!), so we had gotten pretty used to the old one. Now it sits in our garage and we'll take it to the dump along with our recyclables later today. Pips was a little confused about where his new friend was going, but he's put it all together now and thinks the new one licks just as good as the old one. He loves to lick!! Afterwards we went out to dinner and treated ourselves to an awesome piece of caramel pie. Serious yum! All these pics were taken with my new, tiny little Cannon camera that will fit in my amphipod and go on all my runs now. Sweet!! It's so TINY!

The boys (Brent and Pip) are still asleep in the bedroom. I'm not sure which of them I hear snoring right now but I'm guessing it's Pip! Once they get up we'll go for a short morning run and then get ready for Boston Terrier Day. Hopefully we'll have time to swing by the Pumpkin farm. The cool weather and fog we've had all week have me in major Halloween spirits!!

Have a great Saturday!!

Thursday, October 13, 2005


Shore Turtle tagged Brent and I in the latest fun 'get to know your fellow bloggers' chain game.

Here are the rules:
1. Go into your archives.
2. Find your 23rd post.
3. Find the fifth sentence (or the closest one to it)
4. Post the text of your sentence in your blog along with these rules.
5. Tag five other people.

From 7/20/2005, here's my sentence:

That's a job I could handle, it's much easier than being the guy they send into all the hurricanes and blizzards.

Goofy, huh? It was an extremely hot day and I was talking about some guy they were sending different places every day on Good Morning America to see what the temperature was.

I tag: Susan (Finally Running), DGC (Running = Sanity), CJ, Buckeye Runner, & Hutch.


Hey everyone! We've made it through another week (almost!!)! I had some CRAZY Powerball dreams last night. In my dream we won Powerball, not the whole thing, but 2.5 million dollars. (We matched all the numbers except Powerball but with Powerplay we ended up at 2.5 mill). It was SUCH a real dream that when my alarm went off at 5:30 I was really angry and asked myself why I had set the alarm because we had won Powerball and I was NOT going back to work, ever. Then I sort of came out of it and asked myself, 'Did I win Powerball?' I had to get up and check my numbers and nope, not a one matched. However, all throughout my dream I kept repeating this certain set of numbers so that's what I'm playing Sat since the Jackpot is still huge. It's been a lot of fun talking about what we would buy, and what we would buy first, at work. Last night at Best Buy our associate said he would buy a huge yacht, spending 10 mill on it. He'd move his entire family onto it. Ok, normal so far. Then he continued - he'd hire professionally trained militia-type people and have a complete arsenal of guns and cannons on this yacht, because of all the pirates out at sea. He informed us he had formally been in the military and could shoot us dead on from 600 feet. Umm, ok dude. You had me until you were going to start an army at sea. Anyway, he was really nice and gave us a great deal on the dishwasher that we will install this weekend. For now it's Pippin's new best friend. He sleeps next to it, sits next to it, stares at it. Every once in a while he barks at it.

Tonight we went out for a moderate 5-miler. For me that means a 9.5-10 minute pace. I like to run fast on Tues and slower on Thurs. I think by Thurs my butt's been planted in an office chair for too many hours to be a speed demon. Brent and I ran together, then a little after mile 4 he picked up the pace. He never picks up the pace! I stuck with him for a while, but I was in the mood for a slower, steady run so I eventually stuck with my pace and let him get about 20 seconds ahead of me. Every once in a while he'd turn his head back to see how far back I was, I'd see him get excited and pick his pace up a bit. The way back into our subdivision has two steep hills. The first one is long, slow and steep, and gets you to the end of our street. The second one is shorter, but steeper. I gained some distance back on the first hill, and really gained some on the second one. He looked back at me, I could see the shock in his face, and then I saw him go into 'truckin' mode'. It struck me SO funny I started laughing and just let him sprint on. When I got to our 'finish' line he had his arms raised in Victory stance and told me he won. Won what?? If this had been a race you'd better believe he'd only see the back of this head!! Anyway, he did run well but it most certainly was not a race.

No races for us this weekend!! We decided not to do the big 5K at the Zoo on Saturday. It actually runs through the zoo, which I think would be pretty cool (although I'm not sure about the smell). We haven't gotten to sleep in in about FOUR Saturday's so I think we're due! However, Shore Turtle is running his half marathon this weekend so stop by and wish him the best!! I can't wait to read his race report. With all the marathon recently I'm totally hooked on race reports!!

No running this weekend BUT we are going to Boston Terrier Day! It's a great fundraiser for the local Boston Terrier rescue foundation. We went last year and had an absolute blast. It's so fun to see so many nearly identical little dogs all together. They're all spazzing out in exactly the same way and they seem to know they have a lot in common. I think I laughed so much last year at watching them all together that my sides hurt afterwards. It's going to be a blast!!'

Have a great weekend everyone!!


Wed - 1 mile am walk with Pippin
Thurs - 1 mile am walk with Pippin, 5.3 mile run, 20 minutes toning (focus:abs)

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

New additions

Good night!! We have an exciting new addition in our family:

Well, not really, it's just a new dishwasher. Ours has started leaking and it's several years old and bottom of the line so there was no point in trying to repair it. What really sucks is that we're planning to move in March/April, so everything that breaks isn't something we especially want to repair. So, we bought a fairly cheap replacement tonight. What we thought would be a simple project isn't turning out to be so easy. We'll just have to finish it tomorrow night. But for now, Pippin has a new friend. He's pretty into it, probably because it's sitting near his crate. He has licked it, sat by it, stared at it and even enjoyed a nap in front of it. Now he's a little scared of it and currently barking at it because Brent is shutting and opening the door and torturing him with this little game.

See you tomorrow!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Do I smell BBQ??

Hey guys! It's been a great couple of days (well, the parts that aren't during the work day anyway =) ). Sunday night after our big run we chilled around the house and got caught up on some TiVoing. We were a few episodes behind in the Martha Stewart Apprentice. Man, Martha can be a Bi$$h!! On one episode where a person contemplated quitting she fired out that she had never quit at anything in her life and another person mentioned she was so frustrated she could cry and Martha informed her that women in business don't cry. Huh?? Are we not supposed to have emotion ever??? I can understand her point, but I don't think being a robot is the way to go either. On another episode this really arrogant person said she was 'faking it until she makes it' when asked why she was so confident. Martha went off on HER and said she has never faked it in business. Both the 'quitter' and the 'faker' got fired for their comments. I think Martha is the type of woman who will actually be harder on other women because of all her struggles to get where she is. Anyway, it's a pretty good show so I do recommend it if you're into the reality genre.

We were surprisingly not sore after our 15-miler. Earlier this year I was sore every morning after my new long run, so I expected that on Monday. I'm sure as I get closer to the 20-milers and the 23 miler I have planned there will certainly be some soreness but I'll be happy with what I've got now! My left hip is a little tender but I think that's more from the tumble I took over Pippin Friday night. He's a momma's boy and I swear he's under my feet at all times! Right now he's asleep at my feet, literally! He stopped right in front of me Fri night and to not step on him I tried to step back and ended up falling flat on the ground. I was very close to hitting my head on the bar in our kitchen but managed not to. Between my bruised left knees plus this fall my left side is not having the best week ever.

Last night we headed to the gym and played racquetball. Even though Brent totally spanked me I've come a long way and am getting MUCH better! I have a hard time once I serve moving toward the middle to return. After our game we practiced this for a while. I'm learning how to hit to opposite sides, and hit short and long to send HIM running all over the court so that piece of my game has come a long way.

Tonight we headed out for our Tues night 5.3 mile run. The temps are still cool but warmer than over the weekend. We haven't had a sighting of the sun since last Wed, but tonight the moon and stars were out so hopefully tomorrow will lighten up a bit. We headed out at a good even pace, 10 mins for the first warm-up mile, then we ran the next two at slightly above 9 and then I let the pace loose. A group of rednecks were hogging the sidewalk and that really pissed me off, then Smooth Criminal (by Alien Ant Farm, not Wacko J) came on the nano and I was ready to fly. Mile 5 was at a 7:42 pace and our overall run came in at 45:27. Very good! That's a full minute off my fastest time on the run. We passed the rednecks on the way back in during Mile 5 as they huffed and puffed away on their cigarettes. Nice. I'd like to work on not running the first couple at the 9 pace and try to push it to an even 8:30 overall. Our next race is a 5 miler on the 29th of this month, so I may play around with that over the next few weeks.

My blog title refers to the overwhelming smell of BBQ in the neighborhood tonight. They're building a new, very nice looking, BBQ restaurant about 1.2 miles from our house, so maybe they've fired up the kitchen. There are several other restaurants even closer, but none that serve BBQ. Yummm!

I was also pretty motivated by some absolute lunacy at work today. On Brent's blog he has mentioned T, who we work with, who is fighting cancer again. She's a single mom with 2 small kids, so it's one of those situations where life just isn't fair. She's a really great, positive person that anyone would love to know. Anyway, someone sent out an email saying she ws going to take up donations for T & her family and to let her know if you would like to contribute. Very nice. Twenty minutes later L, someone I don't know well, sent out a rude and inappropriate email that said "I didn't see an email saying what we were going to do for B". B is someone else on medical leave right now for surgery or something (not major), not a severe life threatening case of cancer. So inappropriate. I was so pissed. Everyone was. I couldn't take it. On the outside I can seem pretty sweet, but I've learned in the business world that just like Martha sometimes you have to play the bitch card. Unlike a lot of people I've learned that it's best to pick your battles and this was NOT one I was going to pass on. I fired off a 'reply all' that thanked O for organizing the fundraiser and then directed a line at L that said "I'm sure if you volunteered to organize something for B plenty of people would be willing to participate." I got a ton of IMs and emails from people thanking me for saying something, that they just couldn't think of anything they could say 'nicely'. So I felt like I did a good deed today. A few minutes later L sent an email (to me only) and said 'she is not much of an organizer but it's about time someone should organize something for B'. WTF? I CAN NOT STAND people who point a finger but aren't willing to pitch in. Way to be a leader. Don't poop on the party if you weren't even willing to bring some pretzels. I can't stand people like that, they really do disgust me. Enough about work, that's my rant for the day.

I'm loving all the marathon reports! Also, check out David's post about all the weird amenities at the Disney race he did last weekend. Very strange, but it seems like they REALLY know how to throw a race!


Mon - 1 mile am walk with Pip, 15 minutes elliptical, 40 minutes racquetball, 20 minutes yoga/toning (focus:abs)
Tues - 1 mile am walk with Pip, 5.3 mile run, 20 minutes toning/stretching (focus:abs)

Sunday, October 09, 2005

15.2 Down, 11 to Go

Hey guys. I swear this has been the fastest weekend ever! Most of our weekend has revolved around running, getting ready to run, and cleaning up following our runs. I'm not complaining about running - just that the weekend is over and yet again we didn't win Powerball. What's up with that? When I do I am going to sponsor a race (in an exotic locale, of course) and fly you all in for a massive RBF meet-up. Deal??

As such, we've decided to skip several of the upcoming 5Ks. They're a ton of fun, but we really need to focus on our long runs and save major bursts of energy for them. Our next race will be a 5 miler at a local state park. We're also planning to do a new half-marathon on the north side of the town in early November as a good warm-up for Memphis. You get a medal and a CoolMax shirt so why not??

Today's training run was to be a 15-miler. Last week's 14-miler was terrible due to the heat and a lack of water "(caused by the heat!) Today that was not to be a problem - at all! Run time temp was 57 with a feels-like of 50. It was overcast (again) and pretty chilly for the first mile until our muscles had a chance to warm-up. We had decided to try a greenway we had not visited before - the Stones River Greenway. The trail maps on the Nashville parks website are nothing short of completely ambiguous. The maps said there were 10 miles of trails here, and since our goal was 15 we figured with a couple of repeats, or the run back to the car, would get us to 15. What the maps really failed to tell you was that the 10 miles weren't connected, at all. We headed out and first headed towards Percy Priest Dam. The first mile was a connector from our trailhead out to the actual trail. Once you get to the trail you can go right towards the Dam or left towards the other end of the trail. We first went towards the Dam. For the first couple of miles we didn't see anyone. It was a really lovely path next to the Stones River. Once the trail got nearer to various subdivisions more families were out walking and biking (and hogging the trail....) Around mile 3 we made it to the dam. I circled the parking lot, enjoying the massive site of the dam while Brent enjoyed the usage of the porta-potties. He could have been like the rednecks we saw a mile later and just peed right off the side of the trail, completely disregarding the 10 or so people walking through at the time, but he didn't. We headed back the way we came and once we reached the trail connector back towards our car we decided we still had plenty of water and we'd continue the other way. This course had already been moderately hilly, but a mile in the new direction and we had to manage a never-ending hill. It was insane!! The only salvation was knowing we'd be going down it on the way back! After the hill we were treated to a beautiful run along the river on a wooden deck trail. It was gorgeous! There was some sort of stork/heron (I don't know my river birds!) sitting on the side of the river and it was so peaceful. Around 7 miles we come out at the other end of the trailhead besides a Kohl's department store. Then we couldn't find the rest of the trail. Hmmmm... We jogged over to the trail map and a man with his two sons was examining the map as well. We asked him where the trail continued on at and he pointed at an overgrown field and said they hadn't finished it yet. Perfect!! A little disgruntled we headed back the way we had come and decided we'd just have to do some repeats. We ran back over the beautiful bridge and all the way back to the dam. We looped the parking lot and headed back. This time we ran back to the car to trade out our empty Fuel Belt Bottles for some full ones. Brent was running low and with 5 more miles to go we didn't want a repeat of last weekend. The 1 mile run back to the car was much hillier than I remembered! There was one steep hill that I didn't remember and all I could think was 'Man, I'm going to have to do this again at Mile 14!'. We made it back to the car, refueled, and headed back out for 4 more miles. We decided to head towards the dam since it was flatter, and we weren't looking for extra challenges - just miles! Around mile 12.5 Brent started to slow down a little so I kept my pace and headed on. The turn around point was 13.1 miles - a half marathon - and I headed back towards the car, high fiving Brent along the way. The thing about doing so many out and backs is you end up seeing the same people (sometimes) five and six times. There were some people today I feel like I got to know we saw them so much! Near the big hill towards the car I passed a guy who asked me what I had done with my husband. I told him he was coming behind me, just a little slower. I made it up the hill (14.8 miles) and then hit 15 with a short distance left to the car. I kept running, and stopped right at 15.2 when the trail takes one last hill back up to the parking lot. I walked back, grabbed a water bottle, and walked back with the guy I had spoken to earlier until I found Brent. I was able to stop him right before that last hill and tell him he'd already made 15 so there was no need to hoof the last steep incline. We made it!! It was SO much easier than last week's 14, primarily due to the heat and that this time we had plenty of water. Today's overall average pace was 10:37/mile. I'd like to do my marathon somewhere between 10-11/mile, so this was a great pace. Without the hills we could have saved quite a bit of time off, but they were GREAT practice. Brent took a lot of pictures, and he's working on his post right now so they'll prob be up before too long. He did AWESOME! His previous longest run was 11.5 miles and he held right onto our pace until very close to the end. I can't say I could have made that jump when a few months ago when I was where he is now. He gets major props from me!

Congrats to all the Chicago Marathoners and Hartford Marathoners and Half-Marathoners, you guys are fabulous!!


Sunday - 15 mile run

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Mission Accomplished

Happy Saturday everybody! I'm very glad to see a lot of the CT running chicks are starting to post their race reports (or at least let us know they all made it and that race reports are forthcoming!). I can't wait to hear how all the people running Chicago tomorrow do as well!!

So, I guess we've moved straight from summer to winter. The 2 or 3 days of 'fall' we had were so quick I don't think I even remember them! The weather guy said a cool front would be moving through Thurs afternoon and predicted weekend temps of 70. Perfect!! So, Thurs afternoon rolled around and a definite chill was in the air at lunch and a light mist was falling. Thurs night we geared up for a 3.2 mile run. Normally we would have done 5, but with the Oktoberfest 5K on Sat am we didn't want to wear our legs down. We warmed up for .3 miles, then kicked the pace up to near 5K paces for 2 miles and then ran the last mile fairly slowly. We were both pretty tired so neither one of us wanted to push that hard on the last mile. I was running it a little faster than Brent and I saw a little white fluffy dog approaching me. He wasn't barking or anything, but you never know and I didn't want to take any chances so I Dazed the fire out of him. He casually turned the other direction and headed towards Brent. Well, crap on me, I didn't want to be the cause of Brent's being eaten by White Fluffy so I turned back around and Dazed him so Brent could catch back up. It was a pretty miserable night to run - the mist was quite steady and it was pretty cool. It was one of those rains where the mist is just enough that you end up being soaked and it's constantly getting in your eyes. I love to run in the rain on hot summer nights, and even in the daylight it's not too bad, but Thurs night was just plain miserable. When we got back we took Pips for a 2/3 mile walk, I had only gotten to take him for 2/3 that morning so I had promised him for walking later. The mist had lightened up and he always enjoys his opportunities to socialize and garner neighborhood attention.

So, we had both had some pretty good runs lately and were pretty excited about Oktoberfest. We managed to get up early and actually leave at a time where we would have plenty of time to get settled in pre-race and not end up rushing to make it through the lines before the gun sounded. The shirt was very cool and the pre-race lines moved very quickly. This race moved like a well oiled machine. But it was friggin cold. We've been running low 80's for the most part lately. Race time temp today? 52 with a 'feels like' of 45. Yeah. For some of you guys this is probably 'call everyone we're gonna have a picnic and grill out' weather, but this is TN and today's run temp was a full 47 (FORTY-SEVEN) degrees cooler than my run last Sunday (which was way too hot to be running in, but that's beside my point). I always do whatever I can to train in all conditions - rain, sun, hills, etc - but it's pretty hard to train in temps you just haven't had in months and months. We're not people who typically warm up, but today we did a lap around the block to get our lungs and muscles accustomed to the cold temps. Pretty much everyone else was doing the same as well today. I decided to run in a sleeveless singlet and my running tights b/c I knew once I got going I would be too hot in my running jacket. But it was very hard to part with it anyway!! The race lined up, and off we went. Sort of. This is a pretty popular race (I'm going to guess 700 ppl), so a lot of race virgins end up being in the mix. I'm not tops at common sense, but you would think they'd line up in the back, right? Not so much! I don't mind walking up to the mats at the start of the race, but once you hit the mat RUN! I ended up elbowing 5 or 6 people who just kept on walking at the start mats. Didn't they know I wanted a PR about as much as I want to win Powerball today??? I had set my Garmin Training Assistant at 26 minutes for my goal. This was the first time I had run vs my 'girl' and I was really impressed. My previous 5K PR was 26:34, and I desperately wanted to break 26 minutes this year, and 5Ks are going to be sparse in about a month. So, off we went, elbows flying. This is a beautiful part of town. There are tons of old, historic houses -circa 1900- and most of the roads are that brick/cobblestone type stuff. We ran past some beautiful homes, past some restaurants that I'd heard of and wanted to try but never actually seen, and then back towards our State Capital/Bicentennial Mall and then we actually ran through the Farmers Market. Portions of the market are outdoors (mostly the flower and some veggie vendors) and then there's an indoor section with international groceries and food vendors. We ran through the outdoor piece and then they had someone holding the doors and we ran through the inside of the building! All of the shoppers stopped and stood to the side, cheering us on. Throughout the race a lot of the residents of this part of town were out and cheering for us, which was great. There's not a lot of crowd support around here, and even though this is one of the larger races of the year there wasn't a single news crew there. And all of their offices are within 5 miles of this spot. Pitiful, I guess they're more interested in covering drug busts and traffic accidents than people getting out, doing something healthy, and raising money for good causes. There were several hills throughout the course, and as we headed towards the finish line we started our way up another one. I had managed to stay ahead of the Garmin girl the whole time, and no way was I going to let her take me on this hill. I did in, and gave it everything I had left on the final stretch. As soon as I crossed the line I stopped my watch and looked at my time - 25:50!!! TWENTY FIVE FLIPPIN FIFTY. I couldn't believe it. I wanted to cry. I had to tell someone so I told the old guy who cut off my chip. He's actually at every race and I really think he's so nice and I always go to his chip removal line. I'm sure he has no idea who I am but I always remember him. He was very happy for me and so I went along my way, got my beer mug and some water (always important that a race have BOTH) and went back to watch Brent finish. I won't tell you his time but we were both very happy with our results.

We were on cloud 9 so we headed back to the car, got our jackets, walked around the Oktoberfest booths, watched the awards ceremony (in a race this large and popular it would take divine intervention for us to place!) and then walked around the Market and BiCentennial Mall for a while. They have little bronze plaque things for each county, so I found the one for Memphis (my hometown) and had Brent take my pic with it. We took some other pics of the sights and then headed over to the local running store for some more Gu and some warm winter gear. I don't have much in the way of winter running clothes, so it's time to start stocking up. No way can I run on the treadmill all winter this time, it nearly killed me last year! We got some gloves and head-gear and I'm going to order a few more things off the 'net.

Well, I hope everyone had a great Saturday. See you tomorrow!!


Exercise -

Fri - 1 CHILLY mile am walk with Pips
Sat - 5K race and walking all around downtown

Thursday, October 06, 2005

May the Force be with You

Happy Thursday everyone! TGIF tomorrow! In honor of the tons of people racing this weekend, I thought it appropriate that I post a picture of Pippin in his Darth Vader costume. I bought it at Target this year, but it's way too complicated for him to keep on all night on Halloween. Last year he was an adorable pirate, I'll have to find a picture of that to post. (He'll wear anything if he'll get treats.)
I'm sure there are tons of people racing this weekend, but here are the ones I know about! This is a huge marathon weekend, with Chicago and Hartford racing this weekend. Chicago is on my list of marathons I HAVE to do one day, so I'm really excited for the people racing there. DGC will be running Chicago this weekend - this is her SIXTH marathon! Susan and Wil will also be running in Chicago this weekend.
Up in Hartford, Conn, Dianna will be completing her second marathon and April Anne will be completing her first. Susan will be completing her first half marathon in Hartford as well.
I hope everyone has a GREAT race and I can't WAIT to read all your race reports next week! We'll be doing the Oktoberfest 5K Sat morning and some (as of yet undetermined) distance run on Sunday. Have a great weekend!
P.S Brent has a video of Pippin wearing some boots we bought him a few weeks ago on his blog & he also updated his picture to be 'animated'. Its kind of freaky, it reminds me of the pictures on Harry Potter that move!
Exercise -
2/3 mile am walk with Pippin, 3.2 mile evening run (in the rain and hard blowing wind), 2/3 mile evening walk with Pippin, 20 min toning/stretching (focus:buns!)