Wednesday, November 27, 2013

How I'm Celebrating my Birthday

Well here it is.  The day that only comes around once a year... my birthday!

Sadly there is some kind of a stomach virus making it's rounds in my house.  My daughter got it Saturday night and didn't feel better until Monday afternoon when she handed it off to me.  I still this morning am left feeling less than stellar although happily I haven't had anymore GI distress since Monday night.  My son got that this morning and had to stay home from school.  He is very bummed about that since his class was reading to the kindergarten classes this morning and they were dressing up as pilgrims and Indians.  He was supposed to be an Indian and we worked really hard on his costume last night.

don't judge the mess, cleaning isn't a priority when I feel like harfing

You know I am not feeling good when my co workers bring me in maple bars and chocolate cake for my birthday yesterday and I can't even eat a whole piece of cake...  and I didn't even touch the maple bars.  It still doesn't sound good today either.  I went home from work yesterday early and took a three hour nap.

I am hoping to feel good enough to get out for a run this afternoon at least a short one.   Other than that I don't have any big plans for the day.  Take a nap, clean house and take care of my little man. Later tonight I plan to snuggle up on the couch with my kids and watch Survivor.  Yep pretty crazy around here.

Huge thank you to everyone who participated in my virtual run for my birthday to raise money for the South Dakota Ranchers Relief Fund.  I emailed the winners of the PRO Compression socks and sleeves and Swirlgear shirt.  I had three photo submitted and I will post the photos and the photo winner on Friday.  My kids are my co judges on this one and we are going to take it very serious.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Three Things Thursday

1. My co workers warned me yesterday that I was setting myself up to be mauled when I wrote that it was National Go Hug a Runner Day on the schedule at work.  I did get a lot of great hugs.  Love my co workers. 

2. Speaking of my co workers, sounds like more and more of them are coming around to my way of thinking.  I got a friend hooked on Zuzka Lights first set of workout DVDs Power Cardio, now she is talking about running her first 5k next summer.  um... YAY! 

Sounds like another girl I work with is thinking about ordering Zuzka's DVDs and going with the Power Strength Series then we can trade around.  and yet another girl is hooked on doing her ZWOWs from  While you have to pay to get the newest workouts the first 70 or so are free. and unlike Bodyrock.TV's mile long list of equipment, Zuzka keeps it simple.

You would think they pay me for this, but no, I just love Zuzka and her workouts.  I have been a happy follower of hers for over three years now and while I make up my own workouts a lot, I still look forward to new ones from her and go back and do old favorites.  I think they really helped my running and I am happy to see more and more co workers falling in love with her workouts too.

3. Tuesday was a lovely 54 degrees.  Today when I rolled out of bed it was 1 degree F.  One.  BRRR
I like cold weather running, but that might be pushing it.  Unless the sun comes out this morning and then it is all about the layers.. and no wind chill.    I read someone's blog yesterday where they didn't like to run outside below 40 degrees.  I guess if I had a treadmill I could be pickier, but I really like running on a 20 degree sunny day. 

Don't get me wrong I like running on a 45 degree sunny day better, but I think part of the joy of running is getting out and running all four seasons cold, wet, warm, windy,  and even hot.  Although I will admit being a bigger heat wimp than I am a cold wimp.  I don't like to run if it is hotter than 75 out.  I will, but I don't like it.  Hotter than 85 and I may as well just melt.

Are you a bigger heat wimp or cold wimp when it comes to running outside?  I am a heat wimp, give me a cold run any day!

Who is your favorite workout personality to follow? 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

On the bright side

Since it is hunting season I like to try to wear bright colors when out running. 

I think this shirt and socks that I wore yesterday is a winner.  Pretty sure I will not be mistaken for a deer while wearing this.  These pictures don't even quite capture the neon brightness of my shirt and socks, but you get the idea.
shirt from Ellie and socks from Pro Compression, shorts not bright but great from Swirl Gear
even more so than this bright outfit that I wore exactly a year ago yesterday, although it is still bright and visible!
I really miss those shoes.  I wish the Pure Flows would never have changed the 2s were just not for me and the originals were so perfect!  I should have bought every pair I could find.  Maybe the 3s will be for me again.  I have heard other people with that same complaint so I feel justified in my complaints.

Speaking of a year ago.  A year ago exactly my little sis and I were going for a run on my favorite route.  and we stopped to try and get a fun jumping picture.

I know why she had to move but that doesn't mean I like it!  Apparently we weren't so worried about hunters on this day.
also I got my first picture in for my virtual run.  There is a $25 iTunes gift card for the picture winner!  So far I have raised $165 for the South Dakota Ranchers Relief Fund!  YAY!

How important are bright visible running clothes to you?  I don't usually worry too much about it unless it's hunting season!

Monday, November 18, 2013

A Lesson in Patience

One of the things a runner must learn is sometimes one of the hardest.  Patience.

We must have patience to accumulate the miles of training needed to get to our goals.  We cannot just go out and get a PR in a race with out first having put in the sweat, tears, and miles.  We must then have the patience to let out bodies recover properly before resuming training for the rest race.  I usually from the months of March to September always have yet another race to look forward to.  This year I was side lined from the end of March until September and then again for the whole month of October until mid November, dealing first with a major quad strain and then a foot injury.

I fully believe now looking back that had I rested better in the week following Peaks to Prairie in which I had run a grueling 9 plus miles down hill at a PR pace I would have been back at it much sooner.   I lacked the patience to give my body the break it needed.

I hate downtime.  I want to get out and run.  So I did despite all the DOMS in my quads I kept a pretty normal schedule with a cutback in intensity but not necessarily mileage.  Then once it was apparent I was clearly injured I kept trying to push my body back into it before it was ready.  So instead of 6 weeks of rest, I had nearly 5 months of crappy running.

When I hurt my foot in October I was so bummed but it hurt bad enough that I did nearly nothing the first week and then after that for another 3 weeks I only did things that didn't irritate it at all. When I did start running again I kept my Garmin off and my pace easy and my miles way down. 

Happily I can report today that my patience is paying off! My foot is feeling so much better and my right quad no longer has a niggle in it either.   I also for the first time since April was able to confidently add jump lunges, jump squats and mountain climbers back into my HIIT workouts without having to go easy on them.  YAY! 

and I am adding them back in slowly only doing 10 jump lunges at a time instead of the 40 I used to normally do.  Even though I would really like to be back to 40 I am going to ease into it carefully with patience.  What this last 6 or so months has really taught me is that in the long run the patience will pay off if I just give my body the time it needs to heal and get back into it.

and finally if you are wanting a new pair of compression socks your odds of winning a pair are huge if you enter my virtual run!

At this point I hope I have learned the value of being patient in post race recovery and recovering from injuries.  Being sidelined for a week or 4 is way way better than having sub par running and getting more injuries.  if only I didn't love running so much it would be easier to be patient!

How have injuries affected your patience?

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Trying new things: Avocado Oil

I recently purchased my first bottle of avocado oil thanks to Costco.  I brought it home and was using it for salad dressing with white wine vinegar and some seasonings and that was pretty yum, but then got to wondering if I could use it for cooking and what the benefits if any are of using avocado oil. So I looked it up! Plus the bottle had lots of great info on it too.

It has an unusually high smoking point and is very heat stable which makes it great for sauteing, baking, marinating, stir-frying, grilling, and even frying foods in.  In case you don't know the smoking point is defined as the temperature at which an oil starts to show visible smoke in the pan.  When it starts smoking the fatty acids break down structurally, flavor is lost, and unhealthy compounds are formed. 

Avocado oil's smoking point is listed as somewhere between 480 (unrefined oil)  and 520 refined oil) F.  Compare that to olive oil's 300 to 400 degree (depending on the level of refinement) smoking point.

Avocado oil, like olive oil, comes from the fruit of the avocado not the seed or the nut like a lot of oils.

The fatty acid profile for avocados is comparable to olive oil.  About 76% of the fat is monounsaturated, 12% is saturated and the rest polyunsaturated.

So what about the flavor you ask.. slightly nutty.  I was afraid it was have a really strong flavor and I wouldn't like it, but it's so good!

I used it in a shaved brussel sprouts salad, a pasta salad and used in in my pizza dough last night.  All good.   I also used it for a simple salad dressing with equal parts avocado oil and white basalmic vinegar and a dash or two of Mrs. Dash.  It may be my new favorite salad dressing. 

It is also supposed to be really great for your skin.  Lots of vitamin E, rehydrating properties, reduces the appearance of age spots, etc  There are lots of other touted benefits you can find by Googling it like it's good for blood pressure, has anti cancer properties, good for psoriasis. 

My take home is it is a great all around oil for the kitchen.

Tell me your favorite cooking oils right now, or just favorite oil.  One of my favorites is still pumpkin oil but it is dreadfully hard to find in Billings MT.  SO GOOD!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Three Things Thursday


 1.  Lets talk progress!  I ran 14 miles in the last week.  YAY!  5 miles last Thursday, 4 on Saturday, and then 5 yesterday.  My foot felt a little sore after Saturdays run so I rested it Sunday and Monday.  Yesterday I noticed it felt good so I took it out for a test run and then kept on going since it gave me no problems.

I also did jump lunges for the first time since April with no niggles, no worries about my right quad, just feeling good. 

Pretty sure Cola is happy about me getting back to running more too.
Monday was 19 degrees and yesterday 55.  Love Montana weather
My plan is to keep my mileage pretty low for awhile and really just ease back into it.  and possibly  run a 5k on Thanksgiving. I am going to wait until next week before I really decide on that one, but I really really want to do it.
2. Pretty sure the last time I charged up my Garmin was right before I hurt my foot.  It has just been sitting in my basket of running gear.  I take it out sometimes and look at it, but up until today I just didn't feel ready to charge it up.  a). I didn't run most of October and b). I wanted my intro back into running to just be relaxed and no pressure.
Since I can have an app for that it is easier said than done.  I confess to cheating and using my Map my run app so I could keep track of distance and a rough estimate of pace.  To my credit I didn't obsess over my pace, but I do really like to know distance at pace.  Although I am convinced the app does not agree with what my Garmin would call a mile.  It always seems to call a mile before what I KNOW from years of running certain directions from my house what a mile is.  Annoying really.
3. Have I shown you guys Rocky lately?

 This guy really grew.  Hard to believe sometimes I found him in my driveway with his placenta still attached.  Here is a better shot of just how big he is!

also a huge THANK YOU!
to everyone who has entered my virtual run!  You make my day!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

8 years

Today makes 8 years that my husband has been putting up with me. 
 On our honeymoon in Maui.

 and now we are blessed with two smart, funny, beautiful kids.

Yep, life is good.

PS did you check out my virtual run for my birthday.  Pretty much guaranteed a prize right now if you enter. :)

Monday, November 11, 2013

An invitation to run with me for my birthday and for ranchers

Anyone who has followed my blog knows that I am a Montana cowgirl.  I was blessed to grow up in the most beautiful places in the world on a ranch.  I worked for my Dad while growing up cutting hay, building and repairing fences, working cattle in the heat, the cold and everything in between.  Ranching can be a hard business.  It is a 365 day a year job and some times of the year it is a 24 hour job with calving and getting crops harvested.  It is also at the mercy of the weather and what Mother Nature throws at us.

The blizzard that devastated over 6,000 ranching families in South Dakota left me wanting to do something to help.  This is a short video that summarizes the damage from the storm and what they are going through.

and a longer but more throrough video, really explains a lot about the disaster and what the ranchers are facing. If you have the time I really recommend the second video.

Coincidentally my birthday is at the end of this month so I am going to do a virtual run for my birthday to attempt to raise money for the South Dakota Ranchers Relief Fund

Race Rules
1. Anyone can participate but a donation is what gets you in the running for the prizes.
2. It can be run anytime between now and November 27.  My birthday :)
3. You don't have to send a picture but you get bonus points for it.  I am going to give an iTunes giftcard to the most creative picture. Judges will be myself and my two kids.
4. Enter via the Rafflecoptor widget below
5. The distance run can be a 5k or 1 mile or longer if you chose.

So far I have heard back from PRO Compression who is being super generous and is donating 2 pairs of socks and 2 pairs of compression sleeves to the run for prizes.  I am hoping to find a few more companies willing to donate some prizes.   

I am also a Swirlgear Ambassador and I love their shirts so much I will donate a capped sleeve shirt to one lucky winner

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Three Things Thursday includes giveaway winners!

1. Running.. hmm well if you came here to read about my running exploits, adventures and races you are in for yet another disappointment.  I had really hoped a month or so of taking it easy on my foot would be the cure all, but here I am 5 weeks later and it just doesn't feel normal still.  Not terrible painful like it was but not right.  So I am going to make an appointment with a foot person and hopefully get a cure.

nothing to do with running, just thought it was a pretty picture with the saddle dusted in snow.  It is from Monday when my Dad and brother shipped the steer calves
2. Some randoms for this one
  • I just got my wedding ring back from the jewelers. I love how shiny and new it looks now
  • I just might do the majority of my Christmas shopping online this year
  • Halloween candy.. love and hate.  so addicted
  • I am halfway through a Masters of Beef Advocacy Course, very interesting and what a lot of work!
  • 20 days until my birthday
  • Since when did lime Skittles get replaced with green apple ones?

3. Winners.  I know I said I would post this Monday, but the week seems to have flown by and here it is Thursday.  The winners of the Perky Jerky giveaway are
 who is
 Jerilee at Mom's Gone Running who ran her 8th marathon at the St George Marathon last month and (drum roll please) qualified for Boston with a time of 3:34:41!!  Huge Congrats to Jerilee. 

and winner number 2 is
Erin blogs at Go (Super)Mama Go.  I love the name of her blog and she posts great crafts and recipes for kids as well as workout that can be done at home. She is also pretty speedy.  Her PRs for the 5k and half marathon are very close to mine.  I bet if she lived closer to me we could push each other to faster PRs.  If I ever get back to running ha!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Two things I am loving right now...

Yesterday I ordered some little football guys (kind of like army guys only football) for my son.  I shopped around on the internet for the best price and then finally ordered through Amazon since they also had free shipping.  Two hours later I found them for nearly ten dollars cheaper on another website while I was looking at Christmas presents for my daughter.  Can't say as though I was pleased. It feels a bit like the situation with my foot.  It was feeling better so I went for a run last week.  Four days after the run it decides to start feeling achy again.  At least it isn't super painful but I am putting myself back on low impact training.

Insert big grumpy pouty face here.

Grumpy Cat does it better than I do. 

It is November a month for being thankful and my birthday month so I am determined to make lemonade.  I pinned some new workouts this morning and am determined to work off all the Halloween candy I have swiped out my kids buckets.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

October review

October was not my best month for running this year. In fact I ran a grand total of three times.  I skipped two races I really wanted to do.  I didn't technically DNS them since I hadn't signed up for them yet... maybe I knew I was going to be injured or just wasn't very optimistic after missing the whole summer racing season.

Boring.  Frustrating.  My favorite time of year to run is fall and there I was most of October limping around with a sore foot. I am done with the limping and making a plan to ease back into running.  and I do mean ease and not jump into it.  Not much to review in October, lots of time spent on the elliptical and doing cross training.

It is officially my birthday month.  My birthday isn't until the end of the month and since it annoys my husband I like to celebrate my birthday all November.  I love birthdays and he is clearly a birthday fun hater.  Not that I am excited about getting older but it is always better than the alternative and I like to enjoy life.

I am just hoping being 36 will be easier on my body and better for running than being 35 was.  I very much learned this year that my body is neither limitless nor unbreakable.  In fact I started to hate those words when applied to fitspiration. 
I tried to tell myself they applied to my spirit and my attitude, but they still made me cranky.
I saw something about 30 days of being thankful in November so here are my first three since I am a little behind.

1. I am so thankful for my kids, I have never loved anything so much as I love those two. 
2. My husband.  He is pretty awesome really. I appreciate all the things he does for me and love the man that he is.  Now if he would just get better about taking off his dirty shoes in the house...
3. My parents for so many reasons.  Truly great examples for me. They were always involved in the things we did and support me still with my running and helping watch kids. I always remember feeling loved and blessed to have the family I did while I was growing up.  I still do.

Yesterday was also the last flag football game and my son was very determined his team would win a game.  They did!!
 I was so proud of the way the boys played and improved since the first couple of games.  This kid also had a couple of quarter back sacks, and some good runs.
Hope your October was better than mine.  Tell me something less than great about your October, or something really awesome.