Confessions of a so Called "Runner"

I love to run, but I would consider myself a fair weather runner. The weather just right, little to no wind, and I choose how many miles I want to do. Usually 3-5 is my favorite. I don't want to be forced to run or always have a looming agenda of a run waiting to be done. Most of you know I signed up for my first marathon this fall here in Des Moines, Iowa. As you also may know, I have been super whiny, lazy, and hating almost every minute of it but I am NOT a quitter. Especially after already running 17 miles. So I am going to suck it up and give you a little insight to what goes through my crazy brain as I train for this crazy race!During the week I have been doing my short runs pushing my baby in her BOB and I quit following a training plan when I started to burn out....after my first long run! Haha I bought a Garmin watch to track my time and distance for my long runs because running with a phone is awful. I did have a goal of running the race in under 4 hours but have adjusted my expectations to just finish the race. My long runs fall on a weekend which sucks because I want to look forward to my weekend, not run and spend the other day recovering. Yes I am whining. I swear even though I wear headphones and focus on putting one foot in front of the other, my brain doesn't shut off! It's actually quite hysterical what I say to myself or think, and most of it is too funny not to share. Maybe I am the only looney runner :) but I doubt that. I have runs where I start off in a bad mood, mad about everything. Usually because I don't want to run or I am hacked off at something else. Nothing bugs me more than the transition between the sidewalks and the roads. Why does there need to be a huge bump? Seriously! So my run ends up being, slow down, BUMP, stop, go....annoying. (Remember I am pushing a buggy.) Yes, I know there are plenty of trails that are ideal for running but I watch a lot of Dateline and trail running alone is a no no :) Another thing that irritates me is the trees, bushes, and mud/rocks. Our city is taking out trees, replanting them, putting in benches but can't seem to trim the existing brush covering the sidewalks? Im telling you, when I run this is what gets my goat. The last thing that makes me shake my head is how others can't share the sidewalk. If you are on a bike, go in the grass. Do not try to brush sweaty elbows with me as I run by you and then we both end up in grass. If you are another pedestrian, keep over or don't get mad at me when I scare your pants off as I scream HI when I come up from behind :) and if you are a car....go back to drivers ed! I swear I about get hit at least once a week....crazy. HONKING. Why people? First off you scare the crap out of me and I need that wasted rush of adrenaline for the next 10 or so miles. Flattering? Sure but I am an old married hag and sometimes pushing a sleeping baby in a buggy...that must be hot. And if you wake her, I may follow you home. Kidding. I get honks from all walks of life and it's actually like a game to guess what they look like as they pull along side me. Fellas, eat your hearts out :) Running with headphones has its advantages and last Saturday I discovered its disadvantages. Im running along, enjoying the mile I am completing when I about hit the deck and wet my shorts due to the "shots" being fired! Nope. Just a construction crew using their air guns. Whew close call, and another waste of my much needed adrenaline. I am not always mad or angry, I promise. I usually enjoy my runs and sometimes it just takes one simple thing to keep me going. Whether it's a text, a tweet, a message, a song, or my hubby driving by me just to wave or bring me water. I have asked him to take a picture of me running to see how bad I look as I am slowly dying! Haha he refused. I may think I look good but I probably look like a dog needing water. No joke. I love running along with my iPod on shuffle so I never know what song is coming next! It's like Christmas all over again after every song. Music has a special and unique way of making you feel alive! While my milkshake may bring all the boys to the yard, because I move my body like a Cyclone, in reality...All my Exes Live in Texas :) See it is fun. You know what's not a joke is I will get to a certain point in my morning run when I start to scan the bushes for a "spot" just in case I need to visit them. You other runners know what I am talking about, and if you haven't looked for a "spot" you are either too awesome or lying :) When the urge fades it's just another hurdle under your belt, literally. The running fuel has room for improvement. GU? A mouthful of warm slime that you swish around to avoid swallowing until you muster up the courage to do it. I only eat the chocolate fudge and tell myself it's brownie batter :) I started trying the Cliff shot blocks and I like them but they are large. Any other suggestions would be appreciated! On a lighter note, one of my favorite things about running in the midwest....we are friendly! No matter how much we are struggling we manage to squeak out a hello, a good morning, or a wave. I have hit the pavement several places and states and while the scenery may be better elsewhere, I would pick friendly people over that any day! Let's all get something straight here. Just because you run doesn't make you a runner and doesn't mean you are fit enough to be running without a shirt. Come on. If you are David Beckham then ok, if you are not, spare us or at least me. Sweaty, hairy, man boobs shifing with each step is not on my 100 things to see before I die list. Now don't think it's just the men. Ladies can be just as oblivious to how their pancakes are folded up in their bra or what piece of skin is jiggling, but believe me, every other runner and driver knows. This is a public service announcement :) ( I am not roll or jiggle free, this I know is true!) Oh the smells of running. I am starting to learn what the different fabric softeners smell like and which perfume/colognes are what....why wear it when you run/walk? I swear some douse themselves in White Diamonds before they leave, making me gag for the next 20 yards after passing them. I would agree it is probably better than smelling like raw onions. I should just pick my poison huh? That car driving by smoking? Yep thanks for sharing! Exactly the boost I was looking for. And my favorite....running by resturants. I want to barf at the smell of anything food/drink that early in the morning or as I am running. Perkins, Burger King, and leftover alcohol from the local bar, just a few of my favorites. Where I find my motivation sometimes comes from thinking about people I know or don't know as I am running. I mean if SHE can run a marathon, I can too! Or that person is older than me, fatter than me, skinnier than me, and they can do it, why can't I?! I know it is wrong but really my brain doesn't stop and I am not judging, I am just basically telling myself to suck it up. I never understood why or how people get "addicted" to running and I finally get it. Sitting inside knowing I should run, eats at me until I go do it. It has gotten so bad, this running thing, I actually have restless leg syndrome at night in bed if I don't run. ( self diagnosed of course.) I told my hubby to watch out for runners in bed and he didn't know what I meant until he kept getting how do I un-train my legs?! The best and last motivating thing I do as I am running my long runs is thinking of what I want to indulge in after I finish. So far it has been pizza, a milkshake, Cinnabun, and donuts! All super healthy and great recovery food. Anyways, after October 19th, I plan on going back to being a fair weather runner. For now I will be like Forest and just keep running. Next time you see me wave or honk ;) "Believe me, the reward is not so great without the struggle." - Wilma Rudolph

Early Life Crisis

I hope everyone had a great Holiday weekend! It was our first July 4th with a baby and my how things change. Cookouts and hanging with family has taken over our plans and I wouldn't have it any other way. Since my child is loved, we had four 4th of July outfits to wear which was so fun! One of the joys of having a little girl. 20140711-091423-33263306.jpg Also if you are my true friend (aka Facebook friend) haha you would know of my previous early life crisis status. I wanted to run a marathon and get some chickens... Yes the farm kind. Well folks, my hubby is awesome and I have signed up for my first (and probably last) marathon and we have a mini farm in our city yard :) First of all I would like to apologize to all of the people I secretly made fun of for putting the 26.2 mile sticker on their cars. With about 8 weeks left of training I am already looking for a damn sticker to put on my car, maybe just for a week. What a crazy concept it is to train for at least 16 weeks for 1 single race. It is a serious accomplishment to run an obscene amount of miles for yourself. I decided to run my local marathon here in Des Moines, Iowa in October because I think our state is just as beautiful as the next, and if I need medics I can choose who I want to care for me :) The dedication that running this race requires is so crazy but I guess it's now or never and my aching knees and body probably won't hold up when im fifty! I have looked and looked for the ideal running plan but I am just doing a modified version of a few. You can follow my progress/runs on Map My Walk app and if you get a wild hair...join me in my training! As for the chickens, I swear my hubby was just as curious/excited as I was or he wouldn't have drove 50 miles to get the coop :) We got the Chik N' Villa from Theisan's Farm store. A double nesting box, a hang out spot, and a small grass run, they better like it!

20140711-092849-34129329.jpg Put together by us and maybe this idea was not as thought out as it should've been but we are up and running. I called the post office to notify them of my "live birds" arriving and they acted as if they get them daily. So meet the newest addition to our family. The smaller girl is Shirley and the larger girl has no name. Suggestions appreciated. I feel a trip to the nursing home could help because for some reason I think the older the name the better and they have some goodies there.

20140711-093124-34284406.jpg We ordered them from McMurray Hatchery here in Iowa and they are pullets about 5 months old, so we should have eggs in a few months. Eeep! A few thing I guess I never realized growing up with chickens is how much they eat! So much that I found myself Googling "can you overfeed chickens?" They answer was no, so bring on the loads and loads of poop. Geeze. Thank God for the power washer. We will see how long this "idea" lasts :) We want to let them roam around our yard but we haven't come up with a plan on how we rangle them back into their cage?! We should video that experience. On another more manageable note, my new garden is doing awesome! New location, raised bed, and a double fence to keep the vermits out! What? You can't have chickens without a garden! Haha When we go "farm" we go all the way. But I don't plan on getting rid of my garden anytime soon! I think I may have too many cucumbers this year (never a problem), but I better learn to can/pickle them!

20140711-094426-35066124.jpg And with our extra tomatoes and veggies I make a super easy and delicious freezer spaghetti sauce to enjoy all winter long. Two new things I am growing this year are brussel sprouts and sweet corn, so far so good.

20140711-094607-35167651.jpg Call it lazy or brilliant but I decided to grow my sweet potatoes in my flower pots this year. Little to no work and just as pretty as actual flower pots for the backyard. Grow your slips inside just before planting season and this is what you get!

20140711-094909-35349288.jpg I think I am done for now with the new ideas or my early life crisis as if I don't already have enough on my plate. But when I started this blog I did say have baby, will live. Stay tuned.