Thursday, February 28, 2008

The Booger Man and My Race Jitters

I know a Booger Man
His name is Beau
He picks his nose--
That he never blows

Yeah, I know a Booger Man
His name is Beau
Boogers he eats
Like a yummy treat

Oh, yeah!
I know a Booger Man
His name is Beau
He is my son

God Damn! I love that Booger Man!

So, guess what? Beau? He likes to pick his nose. And he likes to eat his boogers too.
Here is a conversation we had a while back while I was driving when I spied him in the rear view mirror with his finger in his nose:

Me: Don't do that. That is gross.
Beau: Why?
Me: Because it is disgusting.

Beau shrugs in response, shows me the booger and then proceeds to put it his mouth.
I audibly gag and reprimand at the same time.

Me: Beau! No! Don't eat your boogers!
Beau smiles: Why?
Me: Because it will make you sick!
Beau: But I like them. . .

Then Beau started saying he was sick. He told everyone he was sick. I queried him on his symptoms:
Sore throat?
Tummy ache?
Well you don't sound sick to me, what's wrong with you?
I'm sick. I ate my boogers.


Carmella, who most definitely does not eat her boogers is horrified at Beau's habit. Yesterday she was reading a book from the library and came upon a page smeared with boogers. She tracked Beau down demanding to know if he smeared boogers on her book.

No, he told her.

Yes you did she told him. I know you pick your nose.

Beau admitted that this was true but he didn't smear his boogers on her page because he eats his boogers. And besides, he told her. He doesn't like story books. Because he can't read. Too many pesky words, he says. He only likes science books.

And then they got in fight over who was sick. Carmella has been sneezing. Clearly, she with the obvious symptoms, is the sick one.

But Beau reminded her that he is indeed sick; much sicker than her because he? He picks his nose and eats his boogers.

Really, I just don't understand the pride he has when certainly he is more than aware of all of ours disgust and disdain at this habit. But apparently his desire for attention-- all attention-- trumps everything else. Not to mention he recently told me that he is in the Booger Eater club in his class. There are 5 of them. All boys. So how great is that? He has friends that also eat their boogers. Already, at 4, with the subculture. Awesome.

And me? I've been waking up with a sore throat this past week. And no. I don't pick my nose or eat my boogers. It isn't the sort of sore throat like strep. It is from sinus congestion. I can tell that it is only a matter of time before that post nasal drip moves to my chest and then I end up with a secondary infection. And if I were a betting person I'd say that is probably going happen, oh, say, Saturday. You know. The day I am planning on running the Chattahoochee Road Runner's 10k.

I think it is no secret that my goal for a while has been a sub 42 minute 10k. And even if I wasn't maybe about to get a cold or bronchitis I still wouldn't be very optimistic about hitting that. Not to mention that this race is very intimidating. Check out the results here from last year. Do you see the talent that this little local race attracts? Mid 30's for the women and even some high 20's for the boys? Yeah. I'll be lucky to be in the top 50 women of this race when locally I'm usually in the top 10 for women. Well, maybe not if all those talented ATC team girls go off and do the Alpharetta marathon or the Snicker's marathon in Albany. Then there might be a slim chance at hardware in my age group.

So I've cut myself some slack. No pressure. Just viewing this race as a speed work out in my marathon training. Oh, no worries, I'll try my best. I'm just not willing to set myself up for disappointment. My training has already been humbling enough this winter. I don't need no little 10k failure to further knock me down.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Smells Like Turpentine

One time, when I was 4, I told my brother to wash himself with turpentine. I don't know why I told him to do it but he did. And then he cried and cried and cried. Apparently, as we, I mean he, came to learn, turpentine isn't so great on the skin. And just in case you were thinking about trying that out for yourself don't. It'll burn.

This memory popped in my head today while on my run because the air was pungent with a pine and wood smell that remind me of turpentine.

It smelled like turpentine because all our tooth pick top heavy pines were snapped in this mornings storms.

Ryan woke me up with a cup of coffee just after 6:15. I sat in bed trying to rub the sleep out of my eyes and turned on the TV. At 6:19 I was trying to hear what Glen Burns was saying about the weather. There was that color block radar on the screen and a little blurb in the corner about when the storms would arrive in my area. It said the storms would be in my area at 6:49. And then at 6:21 the lights went out and hail, wind and rain pounded on my house.

I called to the kids to get up and go downstairs. Carmella, who was already up and in the now pitch black bathroom, called out "Uh, Mom, I think I might be a little scared." Beau, who I yanked out bed half asleep was really scared. He was trembling. Lala asked me why I didn't rock him or hold him. I told her because I was holding my coffee and that I hadn't had but one sip of it. Lala said: oh, well, why didn't you say so.

I put the kids downstairs and wandered around the house in the dark while the wind howled outside looking for a flashlight. I called Ryan, who was sitting in his truck in the driveway.
He answered and said: I'm in the driveway.
I said, slightly annoyed: I know. The power is out.
He said: I know.
I said: Where is a flashlight?
He said: In the playroom, wait, I see that somebody found it. . .

See how he tossed me under the bus there?

I know his thinking was, when he got in his car and the rain and wind started up: Yeah, I'm just gonna sit here in the quiet and sip my coffee and listen to the radio because in there? There it is dark and not quiet and there will be chaos. So yeah, I'm just gonna sit right here and watch that flash light bounce up and down the stairs and know that I am so much better off taking my chances with the wind, rain and hail in this quiet of my truck than with my wife who will make do stuff like, I don't know? Help.

Carmella had found the flashlight. She passed me on the stairs going to get Beau's blanket, his bear Oatmeal, a pillow for him and some other toy-because he was scared. She was all ready to set up camp.

Ryan, sat in the car listening to radio, quietly drinking his coffee while I fumbled in darkness trying to get my kids dressed and fed and figure out if they had school. When the heavy wind and rain relented he drove off to work. But then called me every few minutes with reports of down trees, fires, and traffic light outages. I guess this was how he "helped."

Beau seemed not to understand about the power being out. He kept asking why we couldn't turn on the TV and Carmella kept telling him because it was tune out TV week. Then he asked for waffles and eggs for breakfast but happily settled for a peanut butter sandwich. He also seemed unable to understand that just because there was no electricity he still had to wear pants, not pj pants to school. It was a strange morning.

We left early since I knew from Ryan that there was a tree blocking the front entrance to our neighborhood. Even still from the back entrance it is less than a mile and half to the school. It took me just over 15 minutes to get there. I'm a little anal about tardiness so I was happy that I at least got Carmella there with a minute to spare. Not that it mattered since everyone else was late.

Oh, did I mention that her school had no electricity? When I called they said "It's business as usual. We got a generator." But see, I don't consider dark classrooms and gloomily lit hallways as business as usual.

Getting Beau to school proved a circus. I already knew from seeing for myself and reports from my neighbor that most the roads getting to his school were closed. So I took the long route around which is still less than 10 miles. It took me over 45 minutes. His teacher though was almost 2 hours late. Beau's school though did have electricity.

When I got back to my neighborhood it had stopped raining and crews were working at cutting downed trees and getting electricity back up. I had to be at Carmella's school at 9 am to help with the literacy centers. I had 10 minutes. I figured I'd get there faster if I just ran rather than drove. The men working on the trees weren't too happy to help me navigate around the power lines but they accommodated me nevertheless.

I should have stayed home because the literacy centers were canceled. Apparently they make kids go to school when it is dark but they don't make them try to read in the darkness. Carmella's teacher commented to me that she felt she was there just to babysit today. I kinda agreed. I think it was ridiculous they went to school with no electricity. But since she said she didn't need me I left. I ran the long way home this time to avoid tangoing with the powerlines. Little 2 mile warm up.

After I got home the electricity was still out. I decided that I would go run rather than go to the gym. I figured the electricity was probably out there anyway. I took Lola with me. I was planning on doing my 10 mile loop but I got distracted and forgot to turn off. So I ended up running almost 18 miles. I did bring some money so around 6 miles I stopped and bought some Gatorade. I shared half with Lola. Not sure if that is good for dogs but she seemed to like it.

It ended up that I had a great run and, bonus, got in an unplanned long run this week.

I took pictures with my camera phone of the weather destruction. Sorry that the quality is crappy.

This was on the way back. I pass it on the way out to but I was across the street and didn't think to take a picture of it then. Plus all the crews were there at that time. You really can't see all the down trees but the sidewalk all the way down the hill was covered with pine trees and broken fence. Throughout our run we had been leaping over limbs and debris (little plyometrics mixed in!). But here we couldn't leap over. And here, like in some other areas, there were car parts tangled in the tree debris. I counted three bumpers in these.

This next one is at a little over 5 miles into my run. We were coming down the sidewalk and there was this huge thing in the middle of the sidewalk. I stopped when I got to it and marveled at what a frightening sight it must have been to see a trampoline flying back and forth across the road. There were parts of it on both sides of the road and parts of its legs were hung up on the fence across the street.

This one is fuzzy. Sorry. My camera phone has crappy quality. I try to hold my breath while I take the picture so it isn't so fuzzy. But I was trying to be quick here because people were in the front yard crying. I felt terrible for them. I hope they were just sad at the destruction and not devastated by some other significant loss.
Here is Lola in our last 2 miles. At this point she kept looking at me as if to say; Really, seriously? Are we done yet? She looks way tired.
And I came upon this in the last half mile:

Can you see what that is? It is a hawk. I don't know if it was struck by lightening or the wind blew it or if it lost some mid air bird war. But it was so weird how it was cradled there in that tree. Creepy, but I had to take a picture. That just isn't something you see everyday.

And since I started this post with a memory I will also finish with one.

The hawk made me think of the time when a boyfriend, (for those of you that have known me forever I am talking about Brett S) came to pick me up for a date. I was in high school and this was Brett's first time at my house. His first time meeting my mom. Lala was in the front yard posing a dead crow when he drove up. She was taking pictures she could draw from -because you know, dead stuff starts to smell after a while. Brett was horrified, because you know, his mom just didn't do stuff like play with dead birds.

Lala was oblivious and excitedly told him how she had found it while she was out running. She didn't want to run home with the dead bird because, well that would be crazy. So she hid it in the bushes, you know, so no one else would get it. Because, you know, who doesn't want a dead bird?
I hope everyone weathered the storms and are okay.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Because when I told you to go to bed you didn't

Alternate titles for this post might be karma, revenge, or just the worst dinner guests ever.

Last night Fishstick and her husband had Ryan and I and my sister and her husband Wes over for drinks and dinner. Fishstick and Mr. Fishstick and Pookie and Wes are all newlyweds. They don't have kids. So they like to entertain and have other adults over. They do this because they have the energy and because they need to have a reason to use all those place settings they registered for. Otherwise, what's the point. Not to mention, since they don't have kids they still have all their place settings and nothing is chipped or broken. So they can entertain.

The Fishstick's and Pookie's are also younger than Ryan and I. I also use to be both Fishstick's and Pookie's babysitter. Neither of them ever listened to me about going to bed. Pookie is my sister so it is totally expected that she would ignore me about going to bed because really, who listens to their big sister? Fishstick and I worked out a deal: when Rae and George--her parents-- came home she would run and jump in her bed and pretend to be asleep. She got to stay up late and I still looked like I had it together.

Anyway it is nice to have young and newly married couples as friends. Most of Ryan and I's friends have been married as long as we have (almost 9 yrs!) if not longer than us. They all have kids. See the plural? It is the plurality of children that drastically cuts into your entertaining. Because once you have kids all your entertaining energy goes into arranging play dates and super fabulous children birthday parties. There is no time, energy or money left for adult parties. Not to mention what are you suppose to do with the kids even if you do have a dinner party. That whole hiring a babysitter to sit upstairs with them doesn't work. Kids? They like a party.

Which yeah, Ryan and I still entertain. We just invite everyone--kids and adults over and hope for the best. Trust me, it isn't the same.

So last night we got a sitter. Not the original sitter mind you. Lala was too worried that Pam might go into labor and somehow Lala has it in her mind that she is going to help birth this baby so she couldn't be saddled with my kids. Because my kids? They get in the way of birthing babies. So Bubbles and Poppy watched the kids. Thanks! And yes, as of this writing Pam is still preggars. So Lala's midwifery skills are still on alert.

Ryan decided that we should take his car. I was like fine whatever but I am not driving then. The Ford F250 superduty is way too big for me to manage. So Ryan drove. On the way to the Fishsticks--who lives ITP by the way( we are very uncool and live OTP)-- Ryan told me a really cute story. It was about how his truck almost died on him yesterday and he barely made it to the auto parts store where he determined his battery was dead. He got a new battery and assured me all was good. Having owned a Jeep for 11 years and learned just slightly less than a professional mechanic about cars I briefly wondered if maybe it wasn't something more than the battery but then my girl brain took over and I applied more lipstick.

Then at the gate getting into the Fishsticks neighborhood the truck died and the thought that been in my head about the alternator reappeared. Ryan conceded that maybe it was the alternator and not the battery that was the problem.

We had to call Mr. Fishstick for come help us. Did I mention that truck died just outside the gates?

How embarrassing is that?

Well probably really embarrassing for most people who have not owned a Jeep. But seeing how I am not lucky enough to be one of those people I am fairly comfortable in car breakdown situations. No big deal. Annoying, yes. But eh, once a fairly regular occurrence for me. You know once you have your drive shaft shear in half and have oil spilling out of the bottom of your car and you have to depend on perfect strangers to help you push your car out of the middle of a busy intersection during rush hour traffic not much that happens with a car is going to faze you. Really.

Mr. Fishstick jumped off the truck and we managed to get it parked. We enjoyed the dinner and looked at entertaining video from Pookie and Wes's wedding and marveled at how little we all remembered of the event.

When we first got to the Fishsticks I told her that I wanted her to know that I wasn't petting her cat because I am allergic to cats not because I don't like cats. Which confused Fishstick since my cat Thor( who yes is still alive and lives with Lala) I actually got from her. I had to explain how I am not always allergic to cats but sometimes I am and not touching cats seems to best combat the problem.

Unfortunately last night was one of those times that it turned out that I am allergic to cats--despite be vigilant about not touching said kitties.

And apparently Ryan, Fishstick and Pookie have never witnessed what happens to me when I have an allergic reaction to cats. I find this hard to believe seeing how Pookie and I grew up together and we have always had cats but whatever.

They were all greatly horrified how my right eye almost swelled shut and was all puffy and watery. They kept saying I looked like the guy in There is Something About Mary and were pushing the Claritin--which I declined since I have never taken it and didn't want to see what happened when you take Claritin after some cocktails. Besides once you reach the point of swollen eye the worst is over. It is all the itching while the eye swells shut that is the miserable part.

And, for the record I did not have hives. Just one eye that was severely swollen. I get face hives and vomit and lips swell when I eat fin fish. All over itchy giant welts on my body when I take penicillin. Hayfever and asthma to grass pollen. Really, when I think about it, the swollen eye is the most comfortable of all my allergic reactions. Totally manageable. Just really scary looking.

So my sister and Wes took us to their house and we spent the night. Lala and Pop had to go get Lola for us and were totally freaked out that our "dishwasher was on". As if we'd had a break in and the crime that occurred was that someone loaded and started a dish cycle. Certainly not that we had set it to run while we out. No, definitely could not have been that.

We called a tow truck this morning and Ryan right this second is off buying an alternator and will be playing auto mechanic this afternoon with his friend Jeff.

At some point during that time I will be going running.

Last week's workouts were as follows:
Sunday: Running and some walking on the beach for bit over an hour. Just calling it 5miles since I know it was at least that.
Monday: Same. 5 or so miles on the beach again.
Tuesday: Travel day but hit the elliptical for 45 minutes. I forgot how very boring the elliptical is.
Wednesday: 21 miles. I forgot the pace. It was just under 9 minute miles.
Thursday: 6 miles recovery in the rain. One hour on the bike at the gym in the afternoon-20 miles hill workout.
Friday: 5 miles on the treadmill--3 miles at or close to 10k pace, 1 mile at tempo and 1 mile recovery pace. Around 37 minutes for whole run. Walked it out for a half mile cool down. 1 hour continuous swim--about 2 miles.
Saturday: In the morning an hour on the bike at the gym-21 miles hill workout. 10 mile general aerobic run after lunch. Run felt great! I sprinted up the hills, practiced running hard on the downhill and recovered on the flats.

Run: 52 miles
Swim: 2 miles
Bike: 41 miles (I feel the need to qualify that all miles were on the gym bike which is way easier than any miles on the road.)

Last bit of business. Deciding on races:

My marathon training is getting back on track. I have managed 3 21 miles and 2 19 milers. This week will be a cut back week because I am racing a 10k on Saturday (however not at all optimistic for a sub 42). I feel like I am in a good place to do either GA ING full or the Country Music Marathon. I am pretty much definitely planning on doing the CMM so that I can visit with my friend Chris but can't decide whether to do the half or full at ING.

My thinking is that since I do usually do a 24-25 miler long run a 4-5 weeks out from a marathon the GA ING (March 30) falls perfectly in that range for the CMM(April 26). But then maybe that is too ambitious and I should just do the half at GA ING and save myself CMM. Thoughts? Opinions? I made a poll if you just want to vote and have no 2 cents. . .

Friday, February 22, 2008

Sitting Still. Wasting Time . . .

Right outside my window it is dark and rainy.

The cold dreary wetness lends itself to lethargy, sometimes.

A day like today draws you to your window. To sit. To stare. At puddles, pools being made by small rivers rushing down the window pane.

I am fighting off the lethargy.

It is hard. It is a gym day. A treadmill day. A pool day.

The lethargy is appealing.

I am unmotivated for the gym, the pool. Those fluorescent lights, that sour old sweat smell, dark cave like building. This idea of being inside. It is somewhat terrible for me. It is hard to get excited about it-- the machines and drawn, dull faces at the gym. There is no brightness, no cheer. It is uninspiring.

I will have to look in, not out.

It will be hard.

I am mostly a dissociative runner. I don't like looking in.

Not because I think I am dull.

(Obviously this blog speaks quite the contrary.)

But I do not like to think about running unless racing or when not actually running.

At the gym, on the treadmill I have to be an associative runner.

Associative runners are hardcore. They have focus.

I am soft at the core. Focus is hard. It is uncomfortable.

I am handicapped. Excuses! I am ADHD.


I can't focus.

Sheesh. What am I saying? That I need some Ritalin to go to the gym?

Who cares.

Two days ago-- Wednesday, in case you are unsure that today is Friday and can't remember what day comes 2 days before Friday--I ran my 3rd 21 miler for this training cycle. It wasn't great but it was better than last week's 19 miler and better than the first 21 miler I did back at the beginning of January. I think the course is just stale. I'll shake it up next week. Run somewhere new. . .

Yesterday was cold and rainy but I still ran an easy 6. I ran in the rain because I just can't do my recovery runs on the treadmill. I mean, of course, I can. But I always run them too fast and then I have to spend the next day recovering from my recovery run. I do not like running a nine minute mile on the treadmill. It makes it even more boring not to mention 6 miles on the treadmill at a 9 or slower pace means a long time on the treadmill. So yesterday I ran in the rain. I knew if I made myself run in the rain I would run the whole time. There is no walking in the rain. I had a good run.

But today I can't gear myself up for running in the rain. I used the romance of the rain run yesterday. Today it will just feel miserable. So I am sitting here, wasting time wallowing and whining about running at the gym searching for a spark of motivation.

Yesterday afternoon I rode the bike for an hour. I was entertained by all the high school girls. Probably all on some mad diet or new fitness regime to perfect their perfect bodies for spring break, prom or some other teen pageantry. They moved in clusters, little packs of girls flitting from stair stepper, to elliptical, to treadmill, to bike while they giggled, gossipped, flipped their hair and never removed their zipped up jackets or broke a sweat. It was cute and I remember when I too would go to the gym and not workout.

Oh my. This is a waste of time. I am done with it. This rambling.

I am going. I will get it done.

And later today I will be happy that I did it.

So I will think about that.

That it is done.

PS. Sorry for the boring post.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Le Sigh. It is back to the bitter bitter cold

Okay, not really but after a delicious taste of summer for the past 5 days it sure seems that way. At least Wednesday looks good: 62 high, 39 low but then the rest of the week seems to spiral down into wet, dark and dreay dampiness.

Definitely not the sunny and breezy 80 degrees I've been enjoying.

So see?

Totally le sigh.

I must give a million thanks to Uncle John and Aunt Patricia for graciously sharing their luxurious condo in Jupiter Beach with us. My kids did not want to leave. They were totally ready to forget all about Georgia for a sunny and warm beachy life in SoFlo.

Okay, so that is Patricia, Bubbles and Me. Tres chic in our black, aren't we? I got no picture of Uncle John. He jetted in and jetted out to wheel and deal in Sweden. You know, someone has to make the big bucks so we have such a lovely and cushy place to visit. So I hope your trip was successful Uncle John! We sure missed having you there with us though.

Also thanks to Grandma Virginia and Coach for letting us invade their pool and for the yummy lunch on Friday. I loved how my kids were all "Mmm I love turkey sandwiches. This is the best sandwich ever! My favorite!" When they totally hate turkey sandwiches. Yes, I put the fear of God in them about politeness and not complaining about food. And by fear of God I mean I told them no beach trips ever again. See, even little kids can learn to be grateful when you phrase it right. It is all about the kid currency and my kids? The beach is their money.

Of course now that we will not being going to the beach for several months I am totally screwed. . .

And thanks to Jessica and Tim for feeding us on Saturday and letting my crazy two play with their 3 little cuties. Cousins? Yeah, I think they have a good time. You know once they finally got over themsleves, stopped circling each other and finally started playing.

Carmella and Beau were just totally amazed that they had all these other cousins. And that it was just so cool that little Pat was in SoFlo too. I think in their little minds it is all coming together. Hmm, family. . . But really? What was not to love for them: Skipping school? Beach days? Swimming? In Feburary? Pools in every back yard? Chicken nuggets and all the french fries you can eat? Not to mention all the Sprite you can drink? Staying up late? And cousins? Holy moly Florida is paradise.

Really we couldn't have asked for better weekend in SoFlo. I really wasn't expecting beach days and pool days--it being February and all. But oh boy did it feel fabulous to swim in the ocean, get all wind blown and sandy. Really, there is nothing better than a 5 or so mile run in the morning along the beach, lunch with cocktails and then sitting on the beach with cold beer watching your kids bury and unbury themsleves in the sand.

And it should be said. Jupiter has got some waves. And some shells.

Not like the Gulf or Hilton Head. I went out and body surfed and got flipped and tossed and spit back out on the beach. It was just all sorts of fabulous. Of course the 2lbs of sand I had in my suit were not or the little scrapes on my hips from hitting the shells. I guess you can't have everything.

I just can't get over how amazing it was to run outside and actually sweat.

Right. Okay. So that part wasn't so "amazing" but my joints didn't ache from the cold and my mucles really do just work better in the heat. And I was totally sad that I didn't have my bike. All those bike lanes and peeps on their bikes. The humanity of it! That was a little mean. On my runs back to the condo I would stop and watch the packs of cyclists all in aero zip by me. So cruel. Steph? We would have so much fun--and no hills. Did I mention that there are no hills in SoFlo? Very nice.

You know, I would be totally remiss for not thanking Bubbles and Poppy for including us on the trip. It really was a great to get away. Thanks guys!

Oh, and I should thank Lala for keeping Lola otherwise she is going to pipe up and complain. And she probably will anyway but it should be noted that you should ignore her. She will say it was so awful and she is the mother martyr who gets left with dog while her favorite child runs off to play at the beach.

Do not believe it.

Lala took Lola shopping and bought her new toys and treats and bones and pretty much spoiled her so I am thinking it wasn't all that terrible. Besides, Lola is easier to keep than say oh, the kids? I mean you can put Lola in crate not to mention you keep her on a leash. Oh, and her food? It comes in a bag. So easy. Oh, and there is that added bonus of watching bad kitty boy Thor kick some Husky ass. (Right. Yes. Thor is still alive.)

Finally, I should probably thank my kids for being on their bestest ever behavior. Okay, so Carmella was just herself but Beau was totally someone else's well behaved 4 year old. I know it wasn't easy for him but somehow he pretty much managed to keep it together until we got back to Atlanta and it was just the 4 of us again. Then at dinner tonight he was back at doing I am the most annoying and loudest child in the world bit--which is actually pretty funny for everyone but me. Le sigh. I miss SoFlo.

Now it is morning and I am such a pansy that I am editing this blog while I wait for the temperature to get over 40 degrees. I am hoping to do my long run today since the cold and rain forecasted for the rest of week assures me that I won't be doing it then. Remember: I am delicate southern flower. So not a pansy afterall. More gardenia I guess. Well, I do bruise easily . . .

At any rate this is the second week of shifting my long run. This is bad because I am getting into the cycle of doing my long runs too close together. So yet another reason why I am not opitimistic about today's run. Not to mention that my right achilles is complaining. Probably from those runs Sunday and Monday on the beach. I love running on the beach while I am doing it but always regret it afterwards. Well at least my legs do. Yesterday I just did the elliptical so maybe my legs will feel okay today. Like I said. Not too optimisitic.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Where I am

This morning I am here:

Yesterday morning-- before 5 am-- I rushed out the door in 20 something degree darkness to the gym. Let it be said that I never-- ever-- do any sort of running, cycling, swimming before 7 am. But I did it yesterday and that first mile on the treadmill was all sorts of terrible and I hit the mile in 9:40. Yes, I had to start out walking because I was still clearing the sleep out of my eyes.

But I hung in there and it did get better. I made it to 4 miles in 32:36. Way slower than my usual 4 mile treadmill run but whatever. I just give myself huge pats on the back for being able to move at a time when usually I getting my last and best hour of sleep for the day.

I don't plan on making 5 am a regular time to run. In fact I think if I had to I probably wouldn't be much of a runner. But it is nice to know that when necessary I can run at 5 am as before yesterday that was totally questionable. My hats off to all you peeps that get up and run in the cold pre dawn. You are a better person that I.

After my run I hightailed it home, showered and zipped up my suitcase and we caught a plane to West Palm.

Uhm, yesterday?
It was in the 80's.

And we?

We went swimming. I had on a bikini. Not that that is necesarily a good thing-- condsidering the pastiness and dry flakey skin-- but is quite a nice change from Wednesday and Thursday where my butt nearly froze off in my runs those days.

And today? Today it is nice too and I am going running along the beach and then later? Yep swimming and cocktails.

Okay, so earlier when I wrote this internet connection was a little spotty. I am back from my run. It was very toasty this morning--70's and I was hot. And I got a little lost. But I was just so thrilled for it not to be cold and to not have to run up a bunch of hills that I really didn't care so much.

Week's end totals:
Run: 40 miles
Bike: 38 ish miles
Swim: 1 mile

Sunday: one hour bike with the kids and maybe 5-6 miles biking. Not really much of a workout except a test of my patience.
Monday: 20 miles on the bike in about an hour 20.
Tuesday: 13 miles on the bike in an hour. Cold and sucky.
Wednesday: 10 mile run and a 30 minute swim.
Thursday: 19 miles that sucked all sorts of bad. 9:21 mile. I walked. A lot. I even called Ryan to come pick me up around 11 miles and he said he would but he didn't. So me? I didn't fuel because me? I'm cheap and didn't want to waste a GU.
Friday: 4 miles
Saturday: 7-8 miles. Not sure I was gone awhile. 7 is the low ball guess--could have been as much as 9. Like I said, I got lost. But see, I didn't care so much because here is where I was lost:

And last night when we got here Beau said, "Mommy. This place looks like paradise."

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Reconciling the Princess to the Tomboy

Carmella has always been the quinessential girly girl.

You know, as in: tiaras, all things pink, princess, Barbie, shoes, purses, make up and fancy dresses etc. And it is not that I am not a girly girl but well, I'm not. Well, I am a little bit. A teeny tiny bit but that is more because of my penchant for stripper chic than for true girliness.
And my girliness is something I grew into. Like I said, I'm still embracing the feminine.

I was always very much a tomboy as a child. From early on I did not like to play girl things. I had other tomboys as my friends or boys and we spent our time playing in the creek, swimming in the lake, doing back handsprings on the lawn, making teepees, having races on our bikes or on foot around the neighborhood. We were a ruckus and definitely were not ever playing princess or with Barbies.

So I was shocked when the Barbie switch went off early in Carmella. She went from loving Clifford the day before she was 2 to being all about Barbies and princesses on her second birthday. And since that day I have been inundated with all things pink, tiara like and flowery. As a girl who never played with Barbie or dolls this has been a bit of foreign territory for me to traverse. I mean for the past 7 years I've been raising a little girl who if she knew me when I was little would not have played with me. Girls like Carmella thought I was weird.

Okay, so last week at Brownies when the girls were to pick labels to describe their mother Carmella picked "weird." Some of the other choices were: perfect, kind, beautiful, thoughtful, loving, smart, and awesome.

Carmella picked for me: weird, creative, happy and runner.

Carmella use to ask me to play Barbies and I just really didn't know what to do so she quit asking. What can I say; I am more the type of mom who plays outside or maybe does a craft. (But not with a glue gun. Certainly not with a glue gun ever again.)

I've noticed that ever since Carmella turned six there has been seismic shift away from all things fluffy and princess.

This has been perplexing but definitely some what of relief. Let's face it, no offense to anyone but girlie girls can be a tad high maintainence and bit of a pain in the ass.

The first to go was the hair accessories. Now I am at her school and I see lots of first grade girls with hair bows or even braids and pony tails so I know that bows are not totally passe or god forbid "babyish". But Carmella refuses any hair accessory except a headband. She won't even let me fix her hair and certianly there are a lot of things I can't do but fixing hair? I'm good at that! Sigh. To me this is just a crime because I would totally be wearing bows, french braids and other fancy coifs if I thought for one second I could pull it off. Sometimes I can convince her to wear a barrette but most days that is pushing it. Certainly, no bow. Of course, if I insist she will wear one-- as she is still my compliance girl, but will take it off as soon as she gets out of the car.

I've seen her do it.

At least she is getting into hats now. I love hats.

Next to go was the color pink. She pretty much refuses to wear pink even though it does look really good on her. Secretly, I know she still likes pink. But nevertheless, she proclaims her favorite colors to be black, silver, white and light blue. Not surprisingly these are the colors of Lola. She is a girl that adores her dog.

Then it was the clothes. Dresses began to go out when she was 5 and while she does still like skirts she always perfers to wear jeans or even workout clothes. Now this is probably my fault as all I wear most days is workout clothes or jeans. But truth be told though I love dresses and skirts. Problem is that I like really short dresses and skirts. And most days of the week that just isn't practical. Especially when I have to chase after Beau. Not to mention when all the other moms are wearing sweat pants you just look a little ridiculous in your mini skirt and heels. They always ask so, where you are going and when you say "no where" they look at you like you are freak. So, you know, when in Rome. . . I will not, though. Will not concede to the tragedy of the leg: capris. shudder

I will say though that Carmella's shoe obession remains. She has to wear tennis shoes to school 3 days a week for P.E. but the other days she is often hard put deciding between clogs, sparkly flats or furry tall boots.

So for her 7th birthday it was quite refreshing to hear her gift requests: a skate board, art classes and supplies, an art bag, workout clothes and yes, still with the doll stuff-- clothes, Barbies, and Hannah Montana. Which is fine. I'm just glad to see her branching out.

Ryan and I decided that we would give her an archery set. A long bow with a 9lb pull. She didn't ask for it so I was worried that she was going to hate her gift but she is a natural and loves it.

I am so excited about this seven year old Carmella! She's a girl I can relate to! One who likes the girly and the sporty.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Labors and Love

Tomorrow is Carmella's 7th birthday.

That's right.

I have a SEVEN year old.

And this time 7 years ago I was in labor.

And Carmella?

Carmella was not easy to make but she has totally been worth all the work.

I shan't go into all the garish details in this post but to give you an idea as to why I personally just don't think that there is anything harder than giving birth at this time 7 years ago I had already been in labor for 13 hours. I think that is supposedly about the average for most first labors.

But apparently. When it comes to endurance stuff. I am an over achiever. As Carmella didn't arrive until 9:17 pm on Feburary 10th. In case you don't want to do the math that is 42 hours.


People run ultra marathons in less time than that.

But for their efforts?

They get a belt buckle.


I got Carmella.

Nuff said.

(In case you are wondering; comparatively Beau was more like a 10k. Walk in the park. But believe me, it is like a race that I am still recovering from. There is just no easy when it comes to kids.)

Anyway, this morning when I was out on my recovery trail run that was what I was thinking about. That my labor had started and my life was about to change. Most times when your life changes it happens in the blink of an eye but I got 42 hours to think about it. So I remember lots of details. Again. I'll spare you.

Anyway we've got parties to go to so I can't wax on about this forever.


And today?

Today is my sister's birthday.

That's right.

Pookie is 31. She's in her thirties.

No way around it. Today I feel old. But I betcha Lala feels even older . . .

I am happy to say this week I hit my workouts as I wanted. Well almost. Close enough. Neverthelss, it was a strong week for me:
Sunday: 4 mile trail run
Monday: 14 miles in 2 hours.
Tuesday: Bike: 24 miles in 80 minutes.
Wednesday: This was a hard day. Planned was a 10k in under 45 minutes and an easy 30 minute swim. I could not hit my projected workout on the treadmill and bailed at 4 miles in 31 minutes. Did some leg weights and stretching. Then as punishment I hit the pool for an hour and swam continuous. I didn't count laps but I did count in the last 10 minutes and I got 24 laps in. So that comes out to about 2 miles maybe more maybe less assuming I averaged at least 24 laps per 10 minutes for the whole hour.
I was mad at myself for not hitting my treadmill workout so in the afternoon I went back and tried again. I hit 4 miles in 29 minutes and felt pretty good about that so I stretched and called it a day.
Thursday: 6 easy miles on rolling hills.
Friday: 21 miles @ 8:34 pace
Saturday: 4 trail miles recovery.

Run: 57 miles
Bike: 24 miles
Swim: 2 miles

Friday, February 08, 2008

Carpe Diem. Get up off your asses

What an awesome day!

Today is Feb 8th and right this second it is a perfect 61 sunny degrees.

What are you waiting for? Get out there and run, walk or ride your bike. But do not. Do NOT sit inside on day such as this.


Why I am blogging and not outside?

I'm good. I ran for 3 hours in this perfect day. 21 miles @ an 8:34 pace.

But I'm going back out now to play with my kids. . .

Tuesday, February 05, 2008


This morning as we left the house Beau was walking around with a notepad and pencil pretending to check off a list.

Well, I say pretending because as far as I have seen the only words Beau can write are "Beau" and "Boat" but with him, you never know. He could be penning an homage to Ulysesses for all I know and I wouldn't be too surprised as that is just how Beau operates.

As we walked to the car he was checking off his list:

"Shoes?" he'd ask.
"Check!" he'd respond and cross it off his list.

"Jeans?" Again, "Check!"

"Lola in crate and fed? Check, check."

"Door open? Check!"

"Mommy's Car? Check!" More crossing off.

"Torpedoes?" he queried upon getting in the car. Looked around and answered, "No check." So with relief I didn't ask for an explanation.

The listing and checking and no checking continued as we dropped Carmella at school: Mella's school? Check. Speech? No check. Mella dropped off? Check! And didn't end until I dropped him off at carpool: "Told Mommy 'Have a nice day'? Check!"

My day too seemed to have an endless list and like Beau I was checking it off. Unlike Beau I did it all quietly and in my head.

I know I don't have a 9-5 to job and as a stay-at-home-sort-of-working mom I am granted the luxury of a lot of flexibility. But there are things that I have to do-- things that I view as part and parcel of being a mom and a wife. I think these things are called responsibilities and are things that take priority over the things I want to do. At least that is what I have been led to believe. . .

Yesterday, Steph--as she noted in a post on her blog, left me a whiney message about how her commitments for the week have her workouts placed as low men on the totem pole. Workout sabotage! She cried.

And absolutely, I empathsize.

Certainly, she, like I do, consider workouts a priority but nevertheless we both know we are not professional atheletes (as much as we like to play one in our heads) so often times workouts have to take a back seat. So I-- we-- do what we can and take what we can get when it comes to workouts.

So while yesterday Steph bemoaned that she was missing out a potentially perfect day for bike riding (today)-- and was somewhat cursing me because she thought for sure I would be able to indulge in it while she was "sitting in her office." --she will, and should, take comfort in that I was not able to indulge in it as I would have liked to on a day such as a day. And a nice day it was: 72 and mild in hello, February?

So for Steph here is how my checklist went down:
Get self and kids dressed fed and to school on time: Check
Strip beds and wash linens: Check
Straighten house: Check
Help with literacy centers at Carmella's school: Check
Vote: Check!
Drop off borrowed coffee urn at Aunt's: Check
Pick up mom so she can get in a run (Lala had Lasik eye surgery and can't drive but apparently can run?): Check
Pump bike tires with Pop's pump (hey Steph with his pump I could easily get to 125--no full body press necessary): Check
Drive to Greenway so I can ride my bike and Lala can run: Check
Curse time wasted driving to ride bike: Check
Only have time for 2 loops. 24 miles in an hour 20. Eh, I'll take it. Would have preferred a 2-3 hour ride with Steph or at the very least a short brick but didn't have time: Check
Get home, only have 15 minutes before cookie meeting so I switch out laundry and inhale lunch and respond to emails: Check!
Shower: No check :(
Change clothes and do the Italian Shower: Ugh, gross, Check
Rush to meet Brownie Leader about cookie sales and have cookie sale pow wow for hour and half and end up deciding that we must meet again tommorrow: Ugh (again), but Check
Rush to get Beau from school: Check
Return library books: Check
Mad dash grocery shop: Check
Order Carmella's birthday cake: Check
Pick up Carmella and Abby from dance: Check
Make kids carry groceries in while I put them away: Check
Put clean linens on the bed while kids play: Check
Fold and put laundry away: Check
Set out kids outfits for tomorrow: Check
Walk Abby home: Check
Bathe kids and cook their dinner: Check
Help kids with homework: Check
Email all the slacker parents who have NOT Rsvp'd to Carmella's party: Check
Blog about my boring ass day: Check!
Put kids to bed: no check but in 13 more minutes Check!
Pour glass of wine and drink while I make a yummy dinner for myself with stuff Ryan doesn't like since he went out with friends tonight: not yet but soon, Check!

Ps. I am still grounded from spell check. I swear, I try.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Fun with your dog. Or really, things you don't want to do after you run

Today was yucky; rainy and grey when I woke up.

Beau has speech on Mondays. Usually I do an easy--read hangover--run while he is there. Then I drop him at school and meet up with Steph for a bike if the weather is decent. And then late afternoon I hit the pool for a swim. All the workouts are fairly easy but I do usually spend about 3-4 hours running, biking and swimming on Mondays so it does sort of end up being a hard day, you know, once I get past the hangover--or, maybe that is why it is hard. Whatever.

Since the weather was rather unappealing thought I would swim and run on the treadmill. I know I call it the dreadmill but somedays I really do like to run on the treadmill because I run fast and, let it be said, I like to press the buttons. But Mondays are never days that I like to run on the treadmill. Right. Again, the hangover.

But after I dropped Beau at school the weather seemed to clear up and I thought well I could just run for an hour or maybe even run 10 miles because in my mind 10 miles easy pace outside is always easier than 4-6 on the treadmill at a sub 7:30 pace. More is less in this case.

And see, that is the exact sort of thinking that gets me into trouble. I'll be out for a long run and I'll be tired and near the end (you know like 18 miles in) and I'll think well, if I go this way it is 3 miles longer but there are less hills than that--shorter--way. Dumbass me will take the longer way just to avoid running up a hill even though doing so would still get the run over and done with at least 20 minutes sooner. I am not a very logical person but at the time it will totally make sense. Distance doesn't to bother me. Difficulty does. I'm a little lazy. I like, want, things to be easy.

I digress-- that is more of an example of things you shouldn't do during a run not after. So, not the point of this post. Getting there, patient, lovely reader.

Today I took Lola and decided last minute that I would try to hit my 2 hour run. With Lola.

Lola is coming along quite nicely as endurance dog but she hasn't run more than 10 miles and that has been on much cooler days. I figured today though might be a good day since there would be lots of puddles for her to drink out of and it was pretty mild and over cast.

We did 14 miles and she did great. Took us just under 2 hours and that includes stopping at lights and lots of puddles and twice for her to go to the bathroom. So a pretty decent pace.

Unfortunately this brings us to the stuff you don't want to do after a run.

Namely bathe your stinky dog.

Cause really? Who likes bathing a dog ever? Especially a 55+lb Husky? After they just ran 14 miles.

But you certainly don't want to bathe the dog after you yourself have showered because then you will just have to shower again. Nevermind that it is lunch time and you are starving.

And you do know that bathing the stinky dog in the bathroom means that you will also have to clean the entire bathroom--not just the tub of the copious amounts hair shed--but everywhere because the stinky dog was not so cooperative about getting into or staying in the tub.

And then you will also have to mop up the floors in the hallway and downstairs when the now clean dog escapes and runs willy nilly all over the house. And yes your legs have started to lock up a little so you are not so adept at chasing and catching and crating willy nilly wet dog.

And then you have to wash a lot of towels because huskies? They are big and have lots and lots of hair. Uhm, did I mention that that huskies? Huskies have A LOT of hair. A LOT.

So after you clean EVERYTHING up you get to take a shower in the tub you just scrubbed, bleached and ridded of dog hair. Because really, you just don't feel very clean with wet dog hair sticking to your soapy body. It is a little icky.

But wait. There is more. Because when you get out of the shower you discover that the house smells like wet dog. Yuck. So then, of course, you must vaccuumm, sweep and clean the entire house with pledge, murphy's oil, lemon scented pinesol and bleach so that the house smells clean and disinfected. And not at all like wet dog hair. Which at this point kinda smells worse than when the dog was actually dirty. Then the dog just smelled like a dog now the dog smells like wet dog. Which trust me, is way more offensive.

Of course after you clean the house and make it smell all fresh and bleachy, mmm bleach, you discover that the clean and dry dog is shedding a ridiculous amount of hair because of the bath.

So of course then you have to go outside and get into a bit of a grooming fight with your unruly, yet very clean, husky. You win the war but it does take 20 minutes of brushing and getting tangled up in the leash and you are once again, covered in dog hair. Madness. Hair madness. I tell you. Abonimable snowman like hair. I am yeti.

Sigh, at this point you decide that the $95 dollars the grooming place quoted you for bathing and grooming a husky might be totally worth it.

Is it just me that spell check isn't working for? What the hell does "failed response 500 Internal Server Error after 310 ms" mean. Wes, Code Geek, help! Dusty???

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Super Bowl

Today is the Super Bowl. We are going to a party at Pookie and Wes's. Kids and dog are coming. I'm excited-- no not about the game but because Fishstick and her very funny husband will be there and also all of Wes's bike friends. So I get to spend an afternoon laughing my ass off and talking about cycling. Oh, and of course, there will be beer.

I told the kids the other day what our plans were this weekend when going over the next few month's itinerary. They always have to know what the plan is. Or more specifically Beau was trying to get an idea of when exactly Easter is and when it is going to be his birthday. Every so often I must go over all the stuff that is going to happen before some holiday that involves presents and candy.

So I told them the Super Bowl was next weekend and we were going to a party at Pookie and Wes's.

Super Bowl? What's that?

You can tell we are huge football fans over here.

So I explain and I tell them the teams that are playing and that they have to chose a team to root for.

I begin to explain my complex methodology for choosing a team using the Giants and Patriots as my examples.

Beau cuts me off at Giants.

Giants. I'm a Giants fan.

And I know in his little mind that he sees this as battle between Giants and Patriots--whatever those might be.

I try to explain what a patriot is but he isn't listening.

Giants. I'm a Giants fan.

Carmella is quiet so I go on to explain my methodology while Beau interjects every other sentence on how the Giants are going to win.

I tell Carmella that I pick a team by which place I would rather live (New York). And if I like both places equally (or dislike) then I go by who has the better uniforms (Giants again). And if they both have good uniforms then I pick by who has the cutest team members (no idea). Admittedly that last part can be a bit tough for me to determine since I tend to prefer men with necks. Maybe I should say I pick the team with the men with the smalled necks. I am guessing though that will probably be the team that loses.

Carmella is quiet through all this and then says, "I'm really more into Paris or just France. Is there any teams from there?"

This starts a whole conversation about European football vs American football and Beau starts talking about how he is good at soccer and football and I still don't know which team Carmella wants to win. I don't think she really cares since she is only interested in seeing Pookie and Wes's dog Marlow. Because Marlow? Marlow is Lola's cousin.

Shifting gears to more important stuff like my own athletic endeavors last week. I am happy with how last week went. Feeling like my old self again:
Sunday: 7 mile trail run.

Monday: 10k on the treadmill at a 7:15 pace.

Tuesday: 40 miles cycling at the Comet and 3 mile run. 30 minutes swimming in the afternoon.

Wenesday: One hour cycling on the gym bike (level 10 hills, 22 miles) and then lots of stretching. Been very good about stretching and babying my legs. 6 mile recovery run.

Thursday: 30 minutes swimming and moving furniture. My forearms are still sore. I am more sore from moving furniture than running 19 miles. It is funny how if I do anything different I will be sore. My muscles are such creatures of habit.

Friday: 19 miles at 8:28 pace.

Saturday: 7 mile trail run.

Running: 48 miles
Cycling: 62 miles
Swimming: 2 miles

And today 4 mile trail run. 35 days of consistent workouts.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Hell. Yes!

Hot Metal and Methedrine. Or really, a little gothic angst and endorphines make for a SUPER run.

I thought I only had time for 19 miles so I cut off 2 miles mid run. I had wasted too much time making a playlist for my run and ran into some technical difficulties so I started much later than I had planned.

It worked out though. Apparently a little teenage angst is good to run to. I added some Sisters of Mercy, Sex Pistols and Fugazi. Of course I also downloaded some Billy Bragg and Wilco so no worries, I am still skippy dippy bublicious runner girl.

I didn't have Garmin (charger is broke) but I ran for 2 hours and 41 minutes. 8:28 pace. The one Gu I had worked fine. I also had some E.F.S so I mixed that and drank that for the first half. Stopped at Walgreens to pee and refilled my bottle with water. Had the Gu at 12 miles and then sipped water. Totally fine. Maybe I don't need to fuel as much as I think I do. . .

Anyway, I feel great! I even had time to shower, dress (make up and hair done too!) and eat lunch. Even time a little for quick blog before I head out to pick up the kids.

And yes, I wore the socks. My calves gave me absolutely no trouble. This was probably the most pain free run over 7 miles I've had in a while. I do have what feels like the start of tendonitis on the outside of my left foot but I've had that before so no biggie. So yeah! Good run.

Grr, spell check still down. What's up with that? 33/0


We finally finished the play room.
The past 2 days we have spent touching up trim, moving the furniture back in, arranging furniture, hanging mirrors and curtains and shelves, wiring speakers, cable and TV and putting the kids toys back in.

We are quite happy with our efforts:

View from upstairs: Stair rail still needs to go up otherwise little dirty handprints will appear on the wall.

Kid's table that I spent a week finishing 6 years ago so damned if this room was not going to match it.

See here. Make no mistake. Marriage? It is a compromise: Ryan has designs on hanging his other dead head in here and also "getting him a turkey this spring". I am pushing for a fish. Cause deep sea fishing is something I could be on board with. Sitting on a boat with my Corona light in the warm Flordia sun. . . Yes, most definitely.

See the gold chest to the right of the chair--ignore Beau and Lola. It is now a toy box. I think it is suppose to be a hamper.
It was orginally $200 but it got marked down to $50 because the gold leaf was chipping off. I think that makes it look better. But then a leg broke and they marked it down to $25. I hemmed and hawed over it and they came down to $15. When I got home I fixed the leg. Screw and drill. Easy Peasy. I love it.

I was worried that Ryan would hate it because, early on when we started dating I went to a tanning bed--it was winter and I had to wear short shorts to work.(Waitress. Tan legs= better tips. White pasty legs= GI distress for customers.)
And Ryan said in reponse to the tanning: "What's next? You going to start wearing gold and driving a camero?"
But he seems to like the gold chest--especially since it is the perfect place to put his beer while watching TV from his favorite chair.

Toy box in action:

See that bookshelf there? That use to be at Lala's house (as was a lot of things in this room: red leather chair, rug, mirrors . . . I find shopping in Pop and Lala's basement much more affordable than actual stores.)Anway that bookshelf yesterday was in my old bedroom at Lala's. I carried it down her stairs--yes, those long scary tile ones that turn twice, put it in my car and drug it in my house. All. By. My. Self.
Little sore today.

Aforementioned red chair and glimpse of rug:
And now I am off to try to do a 21 miler. But it might be 23 since I only have one Gu. Might have to make a pit stop at Big Peach. Or maybe I'll bail and just do 16. Depends on how the legs are feeling.

So far I am having an "on" week but not hitting it too hard in the workouts:
Wednesday was an hour on the bike at the gym~ 22 miles on level 10 hill workout. Obviously level 10 isn't that hard because I can't even hit 20 miles for an hour at the Comet.

Then I ran an easy 6 on hills with Lola. We did do a few hill sprints. Either I am getting slower or our runs together seem to work better for a dog because puppy girl is now way faster than me. However she does have 4 legs to my 2 and she is younger.

Yesterday was just an easy 30 minute continous swim. I was planning on going for longer but the water was so heavily clorinated it was making my skin itch and there was this very large woman Aqua running in the next lane, in the middle of the pool. Everytime I swam past her the lane rope would hit me and shove me over to the wall--grr,I hate being in a wall lane.

More later.
PS. Blogger is being wonky. It won't let me spell check. As if I am not already a horrible enough editor now I also have to find my spelling errors. So apologies if this was more painful than usual to read.