Is there an all marathon channel?

This is my favorite picture ever…

Jasp and I did a stroller run this morning.  He’s been asking for one since he started watching the Olympic marathon (he watched it again this morning).  Plus, I actually hadn’t done a stroller run in a week, and I didn’t want to lose my “stroller arms”.    He’s not been getting up at 500 since he finally converted into sleeping in our bed after his 2am wake up.

He never has wanted to sleep in our bed.  I tried many times to get him to when we were out of town, or nights I just couldn’t take another minute sitting up in the chair with him while he slept and then refused to transfer to his crib.  So now that he has his big boy bed, it took him a week or so to figure out he can come out at night and either come into our room or stand in the hall and cry mommy.  So, he’s been sleeping in our bed after about 2am, but the key word is sleeping.  I prefer this to sitting in a chair for 2 hours in the middle of the night, and any amount of little feet jamming into me doesn’t wake me up.  Mike on the other hand, is not as big of a fan of late night Jasper.

But I do love this little running obsession. I just hope it lasts long enough for kids’ 5K races, or joining me the last couple miles of my run.  Maybe this will never happen, but I’ll stay hopeful.  Mike is already sick of watching the marathon rerun, and I’m sure it doesn’t help that I keep encouraging it. 🙂

For now, we’ll stick with our swimming though!


Just me rambling some more…

Watch out pigeon!!

How cute is this:  Jasp loves to go for a run with me, and during the Olympics he did a pretty good job of watching the men’s and women’s marathons with me.  He was saying “run, run, run” (or as he says it “one, one, one”) yesterday and pointing to the tv.  I realized he wanted to watch running!  Luckily the Olympic marathon was still on the DVR, so we put it on.  “Yay, One!!!” was Jasp’s response.  This morning again he requested to watch “One” on tv.   The Olympic marathon has been saved on our DVR, and we will not be deleting it.  Mike thought it was cute, but also asked “why couldn’t he do this with baseball?”    I felt a small victory that at least for now my sport is the favorite.  🙂

In my running news, I realized that I am less than 8 weeks out from my marathon.  Yes, it’s just my small little local race, but I am hoping to hit my Boston time so I can run it in 2014 when I think Jasp will be old enough to enjoy the trip, go to a Red Sox game with Mike, go to the science museum, etc.   I am no where near where I would like to be time wise to do this.  I know a lot of it is it’s so hot, but I am a little worried.  I have my work cut out for me over the next few weeks.

Have I mentioned I have a race this weekend?  Actually two!  Well, first there is MommyRun Fast’s virtual 10 mile race.  I may cheat on that one and make the first 10 of my long run the “race”.  But, you can still sign up on her blog if you are interested.  Lots of good prizes!  Then I signed up for the Burning Pine 10K in Bastrop.  First off it is sponsored by a new brewery, which as the wife of a home brewer, I strongly support new yummy beer!  Next, it was only $30, and it is for local Bastrop charities, so I figured worst case if I can’t run I made a $30 donation.  Finally, even though I shy away from shorter races, I figured giving it a max effort would be a good way to remember what pushing myself felt like.   Mike signed up for the 5K and was planning on running with Jasp in the stroller while I raced, until I noticed on the website no strollers.  Ok..it may just be me, but how can you bill yourself as a family event and not allow strollers?  I get it if it was the New York City marathon or something, but this is small town race with a couple hundred runners at best.  WTF?  So, I am a little less excited for it now, but at any rate it will be interesting.

And that’s about it.  Off today for Jasp’s appts, then swimming and I am sure a cupcake trip will be thrown in as well.



Hi my name is bonky…

Today was a 20 miler.  We had a little cold front this week and temps dropped by about 5 degrees.  That’s huge in Texas summer terms.  There were a couple of really pleasant mornings this week.   It’s over though.  Mark met me nice and early, got out of his car and announced it was 78 degrees.

The run was fine for the first 12 miles.  I ran with Mark for 9 then headed off on my own.  At 12 I felt completely bonky…hungry, slowing pace, completely negative about the run.  I thought about calling it a day and trying again tomorrow or next week, but decided that in my busy life, when I set aside time to do this stuff unless I am sick, I need to see it through…Power gummies down the hatch with 8 miles to go.  I thought I might hit my car before 20 miles, and would have to decide how to add on.  I also had a hard stop time of 815, with 800 being the more ideal stop time.  I hit my car at 19.6 miles and 2 minutes past my hard stop time.  I called it.  You probably are thinking “what kind of loser can’t manage .4 more miles?”  Well, the kind who signed their kid up for early Saturday swimming lessons and has to shower before.

Then the whirlwind commenced:  40 minutes to stuff my face and shower, try not to faint in impossibly hot and humid indoor pool room, then off for a chocolate milk and iced latte, then a choo choo ride, some bird feeding and jumping up and down steps until a fall with minor amounts of blood ended that (Jasp, not me).  Then Costco while the injured jumper napped, then pool #2 and swimming.  Then pure exhaustion…where I am at now.  So with all that I am considering my 19.6 a 20 miler.  Close enough!

The other moral of this story is despite trying to stay positive all summer about our hot weather, I am ready for fall.  I am ready to finish a long run and not feel like crap the rest of the day.  I am ready to enjoy HOT coffee and not have to chug 2 coconut waters when I get done.  I am ready to go to swimming lessons and not worry that I will humiliate myself in front of the other parents by passing out.

And Jasper graduated up to the next level in swimming.  I am SO PROUD of him.  Not everything comes easy for him because of his speech and watching him become such a good swimmer has been the highlight of my summer.

You know you’re a runner who’s just done 20 miles in the summer when you decide to sleep in compression socks.   20 miles+sweating out all electrolytes 3 times over = sore.


More awesomeness…

Yesterday  after speech therapy Jasp and I went to Whole Foods.   He was rolling on the floor crying for no reason in front of the yogurt when some adorable, in full lululemon clothes, with two well behaved kids in the cart mom rounds the corner, almost rolling over him.  I quickly apologized and thought she can’t possibly understand a crying child in front of the yogurt when her TWO kids are sitting so perfectly in the cart.  I happened to be wearing a Boston marathon t-shirt and instead of chastizing me for letting my kid roll around on the floor she said “Oh my gosh, did you run Boston?  That’s so awesome!”

Wow…I will take my awesomeness whenever I can!

BTW…my Brit running partner Mark tells me when Brits try and imitate an American accent they use the word awesome a lot.  Apparently they think we all talk like Jeff Spicoli.    Hopefully any of you who read this know who Jeff Spicoli is…and why he is so awesome.  🙂


You’re awesome…

A boxed chocolate milk is a little bit of heaven…especially when you wear your new goggles.

The last week or so has been the usual challenge.   Jasper changed his wake up time to 5am, so all my runs are stroller runs.

I spent Saturday following the Leadville 100 online, and marveled that so many of the top women finishers were moms.  I’d like to think I am a kindred spirit with the ultra running moms who I assume are also up early getting their miles in, but in reality it’s just not so.  I am up early, plodding slowly with a stroller, nervously glancing at my watch wondering if I can cram in a couple more miles before I need to get ready for work, 20 minutes is long enough for Jasper and I to both eat and get ready, right?   I finish my run slower and with less miles than I would like.   Meanwhile the ultra mom has managed a 15 miler, and that’s probably an easy day.  I also vow to pop in a yoga DVD once Jasp goes to bed, but by the time 9pm rolls around, I end up cleaning up the kitchen and watching 30 minutes of “Breaking Bad” instead.  Total loser.

I plod along with my stroller wondering why I can’t seem to get it together; after all my I only have one kid, he’s far out of baby stage, and I only work part time.    While I manage to do the basics of life pretty well, I just don’t seem to get in the runs I would like to be doing.  Once again…thoughts of the super ultra moms creep into my head.  How do they do it?

This morning starts out the same:  I am up at 445, getting ready to run, when Jasp steps out of his room.  Guess I am getting a partner again.  No biggie, a stroller run beats no run.  We step out into the early morning, and it does occur to me how crazy it must look to be hauling a kid out at 5am.

Up ahead we spot a speedy looking woman running.  She’s jaunty, and fit looking to contrast my hunched over plod.    We pass by her,  and I offer the smile that we early morning runners always give each other.  She shoots back “You’re awesome!”

Now, I am painfully aware on the scale of awesomeness I am so far from the awesome category.   I am on the “totally not awesome” side of the scale.  But for just maybe a quarter mile of that run I felt awesome.  Ok…I always feel happy on a run, but I felt less pitiful and maybe just a little bit like the ultra moms and their early morning runs.   Reality came back by the time I was passing a sippy cup of milk at mile 3, but I had my brief moment of awesomeness this morning.

Thanks, random runner…I needed that little pick me up.


What I learned so far this weekend…

What do you think? So chic….

Mike is out of town.  It’s just me, Jasp, and Pancake and the voices she hears.  Our total obsession with swimming continues, but something happened this week.  Just like that, Jasp started refusing to put his head in the water.  He has a doggy paddle stroke now.  But he swallows a lot of water with his new not-so-graceful stroke.  His swim teacher said some kids will do that and eventually go back to swimming normally.  BUT, he woke up wheezing after his nap yesterday.  He really wanted to go for swim #2, and we did, but his lungs sounded worse and worse.  The lifeguard said he sounded like he was aspirating a ton of water.  So that’s what I learned….lungs full of water really do lead to trouble, as he now has a fever (although the wheezing is better).  So that meant little sleep for me, and a questionable chance of stroller running in the am.  Luckily it happened.  I savored 7 stroller miles because I knew that may be the best part of my day…and Cake joined us too.  I wish my arms looked as buff as they feel when I run 7 miles pushing a stroller and being pulled by a border collie at the same time.

I also learned Cannellini beans make an incredible addition to pasta sauce.  The start to fall apart and make the sauce taste really creamy.   This is the kinda stuff that makes me happy when I’m solo with a sick kid.  Just the fact I ate real food makes me happy and that I didn’t eat standing over the sink while I clean up.  I did do that this morning though after I made french toast while still dripping sweat.  Don’t be jealous that my life is so glamourous.

I probably need to take advantage of the fact Jasp agreed to a nap after not having any real kid free time during yesterday’s wheeze fest.  My house commands some attention.   Stay tuned…I’m sure I have more things to learn this weekend.  I am scheming on how I will get a sick kid to go along with a little retail therapy for tax free weekend.   We shall see if I can pull that one off….



More fails, the plastic bubble, and brimstone…

The week started out good, but then things went astray.  The fact is, getting in workouts with a young child is just super hard.  You parents with 2,3, or more kids, I have no idea how you do it and I am not worthy.  And single parents are in a whole different league…I feel like such a wimp just thinking about all the juggling that occurs.  Let’s face it, “work-life balance” is just a polite way of saying “I have more stuff to do than I can get to so what can I not do and not feel like crap over blowing it off?”  For me this week I had to cut runs short.  I missed my bike ride this morning.  While Operation Big Boy Bed is going better than I expected, I still had a couple 4 hours sleep nights if I hadn’t snoozed the alarm for 30 minutes.  Hence the shortened runs.  Back in the early newborn baby days when my life was ruled by adrenaline and a likely low level of mania, 4 hours of sleep seemed excessive.  Now, it means mid day lattes and struggling to get my job done.  So I compromised workouts.  I admit, I hate missing runs, cutting them short, whatever.   It makes me grouchy.  But I do the best I can and sometimes forces out of my control such as diaper that leak in the middle of the night, or dinosaur pillows that are easily rolled off in the middle of the night alter my plans.

The next few days will be a strollerpalloza.  Mike is out of town, and while I won’t get in a 20 miler, come hell or high water I plan to run.  Since Jaspy enjoys the stroller now, I ordered an all weather cover.    I can’t even tell you what it costs; it’s depressing to say I spent that much on a plastic bubble, but I figure the cost is worth it if I don’t it keeps me running if we do get hell and brimstone or high water. 

Ok…back to work.  So. Ready. For. The. Weekend.


Big boy bed (and a little running tossed in)…

Warning…mostly non running content ahead:

We did end up getting Jasper his big boy bed this weekend.  He slept all last week on his crib mattress on the floor or a sleeping bag (per his choice).  We ended up deciding to get a good quality (as in comfy enough for an adult) twin mattress set, but stored the box spring in the garage.  So he’s been doing a mattress on the floor and seems to be digging it.  He works it a little harder to not go to sleep, but once he’s down, he stays put.  He has had some wake ups as he always does, but nothing out of the ordinary.  He also stays put when he wakes up.  He does use the full real estate of the mattress but overall, he stays on it.  We kept a crib bumper as a pillow, and he seems to find security in that.  Soooo, it seems to be working (fingers and toes crossed).  Transitions are so very difficult, I really hope that for once we don’t say “In hindsight, we should have done that differently.”  Anyhow, just FYI in case anyone else is thinking of making the switch.

On the running front, stroller run and successful speed session so far this week…yay.  Made it to yoga last night too, double yay!  Still feeling inspired by that incredible Olympic men’s marathon.  Seriously, google all you can about it, if you missed it.  It’s a reminder to run smart, and put it all together when it counts.

Ok…break over, time to work!


Embrace it…

Zen Jasper

Somehow the weekend always ends up busier than the week.  I have a three day weekend, since the daycare is closed today, but we have a full day of speech, errands, and swimming.

The weekend runs happened.  Nothing too big this weekend or next.  I had 16 Saturday and ran all kinds of paces, but none to be too proud of.  Sunday I had a fantastic pre-dawn run with Pancake at Brushy Creek.  We saw tons of deer and hummingbirds.  It was a beautiful morning, and we had a nice 7 miler together.   Then, headed home to Greek yogurt pancakes, and the Olympic marathon (Meb is just amazing…what a smart race he ran).

I’d like to talk about the heat though.  So many running friends scale their miles back over the summer.  I get it…it’s hot out there.  My approach is to meet the heat head on.  It’s a fact of life Texas running is brutally hot about 6 months of the year.  That’s a long time to hate it.  I much prefer a 60 degree morning, but you work with what you’ve got.  Early morning running helps a ton when it comes to avoiding the heat, but you end up with 75-80 degrees, and the highest humidity of the day.   You won’t find me out running in 101 degrees at 5pm, but I try to avoid dropping runs over the summer due to heat.  I just slow down and don’t worry.  It is depressing to see some of the times I produce, but the conditions are what they are.  I take a few extra calories with me on the long run, and make sure I always have some kind of electrolyte drink and not just plain water.  I know there is a lot in the running press right now that electrolyte drinks are not needed, but in my experiment of one, I KNOW I get headaches later in the day if I only drink plain water.

One reason I love a fall marathon is that it keeps me motivated all summer.  20 mile runs are a lot better on a 50 degree day than starting at 5 am and it’s already 80 degrees, but all the hard training works to your advantage later when it cools off.  It’s pretty amazing the difference the temperature makes in effort.  In another experiment of one, I translated my heat running into running at altitude.  It pretty much put me right in the mix with Colorado natives, and I felt no effects of the altitude since it was only about 60 degrees.

All this rambling is just a plea to my fellow Texas runners not to let the summers get you down.  I admit last summer with 110 degrees days and no end it sight was an exception…that was awful.  But this summer is a typical summer:  hot, humid, and the whole month of August is around 100.  But…it’s mid August.  We don’t have long.  Hang in there, keep running, slow down and bit, and enjoy the fact we have fantastic running trails in the Austin area.

And…it’s a great excuse to enjoy lots of water!


Would you read a sleep blog?

So glad it is Friday.  It’s been the usual crazy week, with multiple fails on the running front.  I think I should start planning my weeks on assuming most “planned” workouts will be fails, and then I’ll be pleasantly surprised when they aren’t.   My fast day was ruined when someone got up at 500…so I ran as fast as I could with a stroller plus 34 pounds of kid, but that’s not very fast.  My mid length run day was ruined by 4 hours of sleep, so I couldn’t make myself get up early enough to add miles, and today my bike ride was ruined by another 5am wake up.  I’m not too upset, because that’s just how it is and at least I still do somthing….but I would love it if 4 hour sleep nights were a thing of the past.  I thought about making this a blog about sleep and lack of , but decided that would make it even less interesting than it already is. 

On the sleep front, I attempted to transition Jaspy out of his crib this week.  He’s only still in it because I just cannot take creating a situation that makes even less sleep in my life…which is exactly what I did.  I am starting with just a mattress on the floor, and his sleeping bag next to it since he definitely climbs off.  Worked like a charm first night, 2nd night not so good, 3rd night pretty good, last night, not so good.    Two crappy night has me questioning if I shouldn’t wait it out a little longer since he  seems fine with a crib.  These are the kind of things I worry about….yes, my life is that exciting.

I also stay up too late watching the Olympics, then getting mad at myself for giving the horrendous coverage the time of day.  My fave so far has been the men’s 10000.  Amazing.  I was over the swimming pretty quick, and over beach volleyball even quicker.  Why aren’t weightlifting, table tennis, and wrestling in prime time?

Ok…my ramble post will end soon, but a quick story which restored my weakened faith in humanity.  After swimming, Jasp and I get cupcakes at a nearby bakery.  He dropped his pink cupcake (his favorite color…so cute) in the parking lot, and nothing would salvage it.  Massive meltdown with hitting and biting.  We went back to get another one, and there was a guy there getting a coffee and said he’d buy Jasp another cupcake.  I told him “it’s ok, it’s not a big deal”.  He replied “I know it’s not a big deal, but I’d like to do it.”  The stars aligned when I got Jasper to say his version of thank you, and quit his tantrum instantly when handed a new pink cupcake to take two licks of the frosting and hand it to me.  Anyhow, it made my day that a nice stranger would do something like that.

Time to punch back in…long run, swimming, bubble festival and hopefully an IPA or two up this weekend.