Friday, May 31, 2013

Hot Stuff and Streaking

We went from colds and sickness from funky weather to flippin' 90 degrees today!  Holy hotness, Batman!
I truly wouldn't mind except it almost makes you NOT want to be outside.  I could take it, but after 20 minutes the Mini is melted and the K-Man could go all day.  I took naptime today to set up the pools.  Now to be clear, I mean 1 great big blow up pool and 1 hard-sided babyish pool with a slide.  Not exactly your in-ground oasis, but sufficient for kids under 6.  The water is pretty cold from the hose, but I don't think it will take long for it to warm to a comfortable temperature today.
I had every intention of getting up this morning to run before the kids were awake.  But then, I didn't :).  And now even though I could run on the treadmill, the 90 degree weather is still managing to deter me.  Despite the heat though, I am going to lace up right now...
Because I am Streaking,  Baby!  Gotta get in at least 1 mile!  Have a hot and happy weekend!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

What Do You Let Them Watch?

Or perhaps the more appropriate question here is what do you watch when they are still awake?  My friends and I were recently having this discussion, so I thought I would post it here as well.

Most people I know are very conscious about what the children watch.  Here, we limit violent shows that might seem harmless to a 5 year old, but I can tell you that shows like Power Rangers are not my friend.  At least in my household, they result in immediate reenactment of scenes, which often end up with an injured younger sister.  Not good.  We also avoid the animated shows that really are designed for adults - AKA Sponge Bob, Family Guy, South Park, etc. 

But what about the PARENTS television consumption while the kids are present?  For me, honestly, it isn't a huge issue.  I don't really watch TV.  Now that we are limited to antenna channels or Netflix, I watch even less.  Before, I was prone to home improvement shows and sports.  I do have a perhaps unhealthy love of the show Nashville, and reserve that for my tub TV time and a glass of wine.  No kids allowed there for sure!  Sometimes, I have to remind the Mister that watching a "beat 'em up, shoot 'em up" movie or one with adult themes is probably too much for K-man's mind in particular.  He doesn't like it much, but he also agrees.

What I am wondering about more though are sitcoms.  When we were young, we would watch shows like The Cosby's or Family Ties, together as a family. However, they were also largely FAMILY oriented shows.  Both were about families, had small children in them and on at a time that worked with my bed time.  I have seen reruns in recent years and there are lots of adult themes to them too.  Of course, now looking at the time the show aired... it started in 1984!  I was 10, not 5 years old.  No wonder I was allowed to watch.  And they started at 8pm, past my 5 year old's bedtime.

I enjoy some of the sitcoms, when I choose to watch any - Last Man Standing, Big Bang Theory, Guys with Kids.  But I can't think of a single one that I find appropriate for my kids... yet.  They have moments that my kids might get, but for the most part, the story lines revolve around relationships... ahem between men and women, if you get what I mean.  Most people I know agree with me, but I know there are some that feel like they watch whatever and the kids will eventually, so who cares?  I figure while I have the opportunity for some level of control, why not? 

It isn't like we have to forgo watching them all together thanks to the fabulous advent of DVRs.  Record all you want, and watch when you want... after the kids are down.
Of course, this is what usually happens LOL.  What do you do in your household?

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Now What?!

Half training is done. My first half is done.  I am sort of floating along physically at the moment, and I have to say... NOT loving it!  You know what I discovered through this training journey?  Working out regularly makes for one happy mommy, wife and overall person.  Huh!  It's like the Doctors knew what they were talking about all along LOL.  Dumb endorphins!  I also like having that carrot at the end of the stick to chase after.  So, what do I do now?

I have searched everything I can to locate some distance runs in the area.  I don't necessarily want another 1/2 just yet, but maybe a 10K or 15K?  So far, I am coming up with very little.  Can someone explain why the few that are out there start after 9am?!  Have these people never run before?  The last race that I ran around that hour made for one HOT day.  Seriously, it was only a 5K and the temperatures hit 90 when I was done!!  That was in late May last year.  I am not sure I am interested in starting a 10K at 10:30am. 

I may just be resigned to 5Ks.  Sigh.  But then it is a matter of where, how many, and how much I am willing to spend.  I am torn these days on 5Ks though.  I can run one tomorrow.  Heck, I ran one today - on the treadmill.  The issue really is that if I am going to run a bunch, I need to get faster.  I am ALMOST 39, which means the top of my age group.  Chances are, I am not going to "win" a race, but am I willing to just go at my pace.  Not really, if I am honest.  Each time, I will expect more, and I don't want to set myself up for injury before my half in November.  Still contemplating this...

I did decide to finally sign up for the local Road Runners Club.  I had been holding off, but it really would be great to find people to run with more regularly.  Even though I can really only get outside on Saturday or Sunday, I think I might enjoy that.  I also want to try and find ways to increase my speed on the long distance.  I don't have to go all crazy times or anything, but wouldn't it be cool to get a personal record again in Walt Disney World's Wine & Dine?

So until I decide on my next feat, I am going to fill in the blanks with my basic At Home Cross Fit Workouts, that I wrote back in October.  I started back today with the 800m run alternated with the 50 pushups.  My wrist was giving me a bit of trouble after the second set, so I switched to planks on my elbows along with girlie pushups.  No pushups for a few more days.  Hopefully it will straighten out for the next round.  I am going to modify said schedule shown through the link though:

Sunday - Outside Run/Race
Monday - Off
Tuesday - 800m Run, 50 Pushups x 3 plus run to = 30 min Running Total
Wednesday - 800m Run, 50 squats x 3 plus run to = 30 min Running Total
Thursday - 800m run, 1 min side planks L/R, 800m run, 50 oblique crunches x2
Friday - 1/2m run, 50 crunches x 3 plus run to = 30 min Running Total
Saturday - Off

Monday, May 20, 2013

Best Mother's Day Gift Ever!!

Since I had some catching up to do, the Mother's Day post had to wait.  First of all, Happy Belated Mother's Day to all the wonderful mom's out there.  Did you all read the post floating around out there about what mother's really want?  Pretty funny stuff from Chicago NOW!  Ironically, I sort of got some of them without even asking!

As readers know, I have lost a fair amount of weight over the last year.  Well, with weight loss comes the need for new clothes.  Seriously people, I have 2 pair of jeans, 2 pair of dress pants and 1 skirt at this point.  I am sort of ok in the shirt department since that part hasn't been as dramatically affected by the weight loss.  The pants/bottoms situation though was becoming dismal, especially with warmer weather on the horizon.

The darling Mister offered as my gift that I take the day and go shopping - BY MY SELF!!  I can hear the gasps coming out of your mouths.  I know.  I had to mentally contain the little happy dance going on in my head when he mentioned it!  He really meant it too.  No timetable, a reasonable spending limit and a couple stipulations (he wanted dresses and skirts, for me to be clear).  So after taking the morning to sleep in until the ripe hour of 8:52AM, I got myself up, and ready and out the door about an hour later LOL.  Ever try to escape from 2 young children, they are wily!

I decided on the outlets in Massachusetts since they were equidistant to those in NY.  There is no sales tax there on clothes either.  Cha-Ching!  My mission was shorts, capris, skirts and dresses.  Challenging might be an understatement, but I was determined in a few areas... 1. to actually buy some, and 2. to not break the bank.  I walked through just about every clothing store for adults.  I peeked into a few that I had no business in - Rue 21, Pac Sun, etc.  Really, who can wear that stuff?  And then there were the more "matronly" stores like Jones New York, Talbots, etc. which carry nice stuff but I am not quite there.  I still want a little fashion versus classic style.  I skipped places like Polo, Nautica and Calvin Klein altogether... too much money.  But happily I settled nicely into Gap, Banana Republic, and Anne Taylor.  A couple items were bought elsewhere, but as a whole, these stores are my niche right now.

I ended up with 5 pair of shorts, 2 pair of pants, 2 dresses, 3 skirts and 1 top for less than $250.  I think that is pretty damn good for adult clothing!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Finally Race Day!

Our hotel was about a 30 minute Metro ride from the start of the race.  Some people were leaving very early for the 7am corral start, but my roommate and I opted for a little later.  We didn't want to be standing around, anxious too long before the start.  As it was, I would say we still ended up with 30 minutes extra after getting down there.  Of course that is was perfectly fine.  I kept hearing about needing the porta-potties prior to a race, but thought "what for?"  Let me just keep it as clean as possible and say... your body JUST MIGHT want to process that nervous energy, so leave time just in case.

We hit our corral just before time and shed our throw away shirts.  It was a little chilly that morning, but the sun was planning to be on while the race happened.  I took these photos just at the start.  Obviously, it was a little late on the start, since I snapped the 7:00 on the clock. 
I ran with my roommate for a little over 8 miles.  She helped guide me through, as this was her 34th half!  Start slow, don't let the excitement use all your energy in the beginning, cut to the inside for the upcoming turns, etc.  The sites were beautiful.  Perfect sun, not too hot, green everywhere!  In the beginning, there were lots of spectators.  Then throughout the race, we were entertained by Chinese drum lines, African dancers, full marching bands, rock bands and more. 

I got a good chuckle making the circle over the Arlington Bridge, as I remember it as a child.  We made that loop accidentally once or twice.  I think my favorite part was the last mile where we ran the circle in front of the Capitol.  A spectator was holding a sign that said only 4 more laps on the track.  Whew!  I can do that, I thought.  In the end, I crossed the finish line with my own personal record of 2 hours, 13 minutes and 30 seconds.  I had text messages as I crossed the line, congratulating me and reminding me that just because family and friends were not there, they were still watching me.  I was greeted instead by smiling men in tuxedos holding trays of little blue Tiffany boxes.  Tough way to end a race, huh? 
 Next stop... Disney Wine and Dine Half in November and perhaps a little trip to Presque Isle as well!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Nike Women's Half Marathon - Part 3

After arriving on Friday, my friend recommended that we go get our packets and hit the Nike Expo in Georgetown.  We navigated the Metro pretty easily from our hotel in Crystal City to the site.  Packet pickup was a breeze, and the Expo was just ok.  Not to much to see unless you wanted to have your hair done by Paul Mitchell, makeup by Bare Minerals, or check out the new Nike products.  Don't tell them, but I really don't wear anything from ANY of those vendors.  Nike Pegasus were my first running shoes, but other than that... nada.

The next day we hit up Nike Town in Georgetown for our NWHM Flair.  Thank goodness we were there early because let me tell you... crazy town within hours.  We were also pleased to have gotten our packets the night before because that was also madness.  Do you know that Nike makes special Tiffany blue shoes for these events?  They aren't meant to be running shoes, and I suppose they are stylish.  I just couldn't see buying $100 tennis shoes for show.  Needless to say, I didn't come home with any.

I spent the rest of the day seeing the sites in DC with 3 other Team Victorious members.  I haven't been to DC in nearly 20 years, so there were actually some new things for me - the Korean War Memorial and the World War II Memorial.  Pretty neat sights too!  I would have loved to have gotten to Air and Space, but decided 5 hours of walking was probably sufficient the day before running 13.1 miles.  We still had a team dinner, and I had also realized I had forgotten my Boston Red Sox visor. UGH!  So we also had a small mission of finding a visor as well.

^^^My flat runner profile :)... I like the numbers.  All good ones in my life.  My birthday, my son's and my daughter's all fall on an 8th of the month, and my anniversary is the 18th.

Final details tomorrow!
PS:  Consider this my non-scale victory this week :).  Thanks, KTJ!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

1/2 Marathon Part 2 - Sightseeing

My name on the Nike Women's Wall outside NikeTown Georgetown

Washington Monument

White House
Lincoln Memorial

Don't you love my big obnoxious Pink Sunglasses? :)  Race Day details tomorrow!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

So How Did it Go - 1/2 Marathon Part 1

When I decided that I wanted to run a half marathon, I wanted my first one to be an "event".  There are several fun ones out there - The Rock n Roll series, the Diva series, and of course, the Nike Women's events.  Nike was a lottery.  I figured I would sign up, and if I didn't get in, I would have a back up.  If you are a reader, you know that I did indeed get a lottery draw into the inaugural Nike Women's Half in DC.  Perfect location ~ 6 hours if the highway cooperates and a nice relatively flat, scenic course.

The Mister and I decided that taking the kids for a weekend might be a bit much.  As much as I would have loved to have had them there, I have to agree if only because of the heinous traffic I endured in both directions.  That left me to find a hotel and hopefully roommates to reduce costs.  A fellow runner had turned me onto a virtual group of women runners, Team Victorious.  Many of them had met already in the Nike San Francisco runs, and they are largely based in the west coast.  Thankfully, I was welcomed into the fold just in time to make some connections for the trip.  I met one of my roommates by picking her up at the airport!  She came in from San Diego, while my other roomie flew in from Alaska.  Yep - you read that right, ALASKA!!

If you are unfamiliar with the Nike Women's events, they are just as they imply... largely women focused.  The expo had sports bra fittings, makeup and hair.  Ha!  Just what I need to prepare for a half marathon.  Pigtails and a clean face are about the most I manage before a run.  They are also a supporter for the Lymphoma and Leukemia Societies, so also good causes. 

The thing about traveling for a race is that you have to manage to get rest and not overdo the sightseeing before you get to the whole reason you are there.  I decided to help break up the trip by stopping in NYC to visit with a friend.  I also got the side bonus of visiting an actual Athleta store... my little mecca LOL.  It was so great to go into an actual store.  If I hadn't, I would have definitely bought the wrong size.  And seeing that the XS in my running skirt fit was a nice little boost prior to the race.  Of course, visiting with my dear friend was also fantastic, and breaking the trip into parts was key.  I even got a beautiful run in along the East River on Friday morning.  minorly brutal.  Let's just leave it at this - the NJ Parkway HATES me, and DC traffic wasn't my biggest fan either.
The next leg between NYC and DC was

But I made it safely, which is what is important.  I even managed to pick up my teammate/roommate at the airport.  Just one small wrong turn thanks to my GPS before hitting the hotel, and we were in DC.  Stay tuned for Saturday's sightseeing in pictures!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Catching Up and Ivory Influenster Program

I swear, I did not fall off the face of the earth.  Right after I posted that I was back... life got B-U-S-Y!  It is amazing how quickly that happens.  Basically, I got home from the half on Monday.  We had date night on Friday, then the Mister left Sunday, and friends arrived that evening.  But it gets better, then K-Man got sick Wednesday (for the last 4 days) as the friends were leaving.  In other words, I have lots of catching up to do.  Today is the day, and I am vowing to have the following days filled with blogs :).

Easy one first though - I got picked through Influenster to test out a product.  They sent me a full size sample Ivory 2-in-1 Hair & Body Wash, along with some coupons to share.  We have been testing it throughout the house for about 2 weeks now.

It started in the Mister's shower.  He is a basic guy and the less products the better.  Shampoo, soap and shaving cream are his essentials.  He liked that it was a neutral smell, and that it could replace 2 products at one time.  However, he does still like his bar soap for the body.  As for hair, his only recommendation would be that it would be better with a pump.  Razor in one hand, pumped soap in another.

Next, we tried it in the kids' space.  It certainly worked as well as any other bath 2-in-1 products we have tried for them, just without the crazy smells.  Why is Banana a desired smell in kids' products?  I just never got that, but I am getting off track!  Again, here I have to share that a pump would be a HUGE help.  Imagine kids in the tub, slick hands and you have to pick up 1.5 lbs of soap to turn over and squeeze.  Gets tricky.

Finally, we decided the real test was in the guest bath.  This is a perfect spot for a 2-in-1 product for a few reasons.  I usually throw out bar soap between guests because I think it seems a bit unsanitary.  Unfortunately, that is a waste of soap.  The second reason it rocks down there is because it lasts FOREVER!  I have guests 1x per month, on average, so I don't have to replace it often or worry about fresh soap or whether or not there is shampoo left.  I have 3 coupons to share.  So drop me an email with your address and I can get one into the mail for you today. 

PS:  Don't forget to check them out on Facebook or Twitter @InfluensterVox @Ivory #Ivory2in1Power.  I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.
Stay tuned tomorrow for Day 1 of the 1/2 Marathon Tale :)