You’ve got my attention now, Voldemort!

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We runners do not like the “I” word……injury. It’s like Voldemort for Harry Potter….don’t even say it. I’m still not saying it, but my back officially has my attention. It’s been bothering me since about January. The worst thing for it is driving, and I spend about 2-3 hours in the car on weekdays. But I won’t turn this blog into a manifesto about Austin traffic. But I do suspect the drive time is a major factor in why my low back has been bothering me. I’ve managed it with lots of stretching and getting a deep tissue massage every other week for the last 6 weeks….yeah that’s expensive. I’d been doing better until a 9 hour class for work this week, and sitting that long flared it up. Today’s run was amazing for about 10 miles and then tightness and a backache set in enough that I realized I have to change things up. So I’m initiating phase one of “I refused to be injured”. Phase one is dropping the long runs down in distance. Phase two is omitting a run or two a week and phase three is not running. I’m hoping initiating phase one when I could keep pushing on and trying to be smart means I won’t even make it to phase two. If it came to phase three, I did it before and I could get through it again…..I just don’t want to get to that point. Positive thinking, people!!! All I’ve got on my running calendar is a measly 30k, then nothing until fall marathon prep starts in late June. I may go into the 30k a little undertrained but so be it.

So there you go…..take that Voldemort!!!!

Ok….gonna watch Desert Runners now. I heard about it on podcast. You can own the download for only $7.99. Very cool….the trailer looked good.

And if you want Bluebonnet heaven….head to Brushy Creek park…running there this morning was almost worth my backache.

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Psychobilly freakout…

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“Mommy Feet”. Another Jasper original

Are you out familiar with The Reverend Horton Heat? I’m probably dating myself here, but he has a song called “Psychobilly Freakout”. I’m not sure what a psychobilly is, but it should be the theme song for my upcoming trail run. I’m starting to face reality that I will do no trail training for it . Unless I’m willing to trail run solo with a headlamp….and I’m not. I need all my bones intact and unfractured for everything I need to do, in addition to being unharmed by anyone who’s hanging out at a city park at 5am waiting for an idiot runner alone on the trail. Hence my Freakout. I’m slowly making peace with jacking the treadmill up to short little bursts of hills and convincing myself that a gravel path counts as trail time. There are worse things for sure, and I am doing this for fun, but part of the fun means not being in agony by mile 6.

Maybe it’s because I had issues on every run this week. I failed to get up when planned just about everyday….which means treadmill or cutting runs short or both. I ate too much crap, I felt slothful….you know those weeks.

But, does watching Frozen and jumping around to every song multiple times count as training? If so, I’m in business. Our copy came yesterday and we’ve already watched it 3 times.

Ok…off to fuel for tomorrow’s run…which starts too early to include any trail time. Back to the freakout part. I think I need to change my song to “Let it Go”. ūüôā

Shoes, trail fail, and grits….

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How could anyone pass up this little boy for shoes?

Today I was off. Jaspy had his OT in the morning, and then I took him to school. Mike is brewing beer and working this weekend which means it’s all Jaspy and mommy time. I’ve been itching to get to the Nike outlet to secure the last of the Pegasus 29s since they are not longer made and my current running shoe love. So yeah, I took him to school so I could get running shoes….insert major mom guilt here…….two pairs at $60 each, bringing my “stash” up to three pairs. Also added to my stash of Nike track shorts. If these things would just get some pockets, they’d be perfect. Then, this happened:

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The perfect runner’s food

My stomach was super unhappy today for unknown reasons. Bun is super mild….rice noodles and what not. So much for low carb. Carbs do seem to make my stomach better when it is unhappy though.

Next I got groceries, cleaned house, then had a trail fail. The time change has made trail training pretty much impossible. I had maybe an hour before I got Jasp, so I took Pancake to a little two mile trail near my house I hadn’t tried yet. Fail on two counts: WAY too rocky to run. Nice little hike though. So no trail running….again. And, Nike blister free socks blow. I can see why they had tons of them at the outlet. I’m sticking with DryMax or Pro Compression.

So a trail fail, but huge success with this:

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Homemade shrimp and grits (cholesterol be damned). It’s a lighter version with no bacon, butter or cream. Freaking awesome, Mike and I were licking the bowl, and usually my “healthied up” recipes are a fail. So yay.

So it was a good day. Mom guilt aside. There may be a Muppet movie in our future to make up for it.

Castles and trails…

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This picture was taken by my little future photo journalist.

It was a good weekend for running.¬† I was pretty undecided about what my plans were.¬† I NEED to do a little time on Walnut Creek trail in prep for my race next month, but the time change makes it challenging.¬† I don’t think it’s safe for anyone to run trails solo, in the dark, and since I primarily run in the dark, that means the trails are hard to fit in.¬†¬† I was going to run in my neighborhood and add a couple shorter trails once it got light, but decided to scrap that and meet friends.¬† It was nice.¬† I hadn’t run with friends in three weeks or so.¬†¬† I feel myself slowly getting back into shape after the phenomena of immediately losing all your fitness after a marathon had occurred.¬†

Sunday I struck out on my own, and decided to hit up some streets I had not done across the highway.¬† A major highway runs pretty close to my ‘hood.¬† There is an area to cross it very close to me, but for some reason doing this in the dark freaks me out.¬†¬† I’m just always worried a car will plow throught he red light or something and hit me.¬† It’s just sorta unnerving to cross a street with a 65 mph speed limit.¬†¬† So I usually wait until the weekend when there’s not as much traffic.¬† Anyhow, it’s a whole different world on the other side with huge, beautiful homes, and mega hills…some of Austin’s toughest.¬† I grossly underestimated the distance of my route, but had fun exploring and found out there is a giant castle house.¬† I was just running along the all of a sudden, CASTLE!¬†¬† So I now have my castle loop I can do where I get in a hill workout and a brush with medieval achitechture.¬†

Also found the start of the new paved trail that starts pretty close to my house and goes all the way to Walnut Creek park.¬† I am not sure of the total mileage once it is done, but it¬†will give north¬†Austin¬†a running/ biking¬†route that will rival townlake.¬† Adding in the Walnut Creek trail, you could get in some serious mileage without having to be on the roads.¬† It’s accessed off Balcones district park if anyone is interested in trying it out.¬† I plan to see how much is actually runnable in the next few weeks.¬† At any rate, the city website says the whole thing should be done by the end of the year.¬† New running trails make me very happy.¬† ūüôā

Shoes and brownies…

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These are not the brownies I made but look like them.

Confession: I like to buy my running shoes at large, big box stores where no one helps you. Why? Going to a running store does nothing for my self esteem. I buy GUs, socks and any other running knock knacks at running stores but try not to do shoes. First off, they never believe me that I actually run. The employees always doubt the age of my shoes ” you really wore those down in three months? You actually run enough to do that?” And let’s not forget the time I went in scrubs after work and was fitted in all white cross trainers, without requesting them….and even bringing my old running shoes to trade in. While the running store employee tried to convince me to buy the all white cross trainers I nervously tried to explain ” I’ve never really run in anything like that, I’m worried I would get injured”. His response ” I didn’t realize you were actually going to run in the shoes “. Then there’s dealing with the fact I wear orthotics and need to put them into any shoe I try on. Orthotics just scream “sucker!! You let some medical person who knows nothing about runners sucker you into getting these. Real runners wear as little as possible on their feet. You are an idiot”. Well, I don’t care. I want to keep my piggies healthy, and I don’t care how uncool orthotics are if they help. But they totally baffle running store people when you start stuffing them into skinny little racing flats to see how they’ll fit….and they usually don’t. Which is why they break out the Mee Maw shoes for me. All this adds up to putting a big dent in my self esteem. It’s the same reason I don’t get facials: ” you know we sell products here that will help pores like yours”. So yes, I prefer to grab a bunch of boxes off the shelves at a big box store, shove my orthopedic devices in them, and try them on…..alone.

Such was the goal today. Only I had a certain little boy with me. A deal was struck for an inexpensive badminton set in exchange for good behavior while I tried on shoes. A massive fit occurred with inconsolable tears when it was realized that badminton does not use balls. I walked out of the big box store without shoes and two $10 tennis rackets and a can of tennis balls.

Let’s just say playing tennis did not go well and leave it at that. I broke my current rule about keeping sweets in the house and made Gharadelli dark chocolate brownies. I needed them by this point.

So no new running shoes, but lots of brownies. A good trade off.

An on an unrelated note, because this was an outing did not cause me to need brownies, God bless the person who decided to play The Muppet Movie for free all spring break at the Alamo. Sharing one of my fave childhood movies with Jaspy made for a non-brownie needing day this past weekend. It was lovely.

One last happy thought: nice running weather all week so far!

Still wearing old lady shoes…

From the last time I ran this race, 2007.  Yikes.
From the last time I ran this race, 2007. Yikes.

I haven’t been on the blog much lately, because I don’t have very much interesting running talk. ¬†I ran on the treadmill for two weeks. ¬†I survived. ¬†Actually, I was very, very glad to have it. ¬†It wasn’t that bad. ¬†Even if I had someone to watch Jasp, I would have probably run it about half that time due to freezing weather, as the coldest winter I’ve ever had in Texas seems to just keep going, and going. ¬†This weekend I finally was able to get outside to run, and was a little disappointed in the lack of epic-ness in my runs. ¬†For two weeks I ran on the treadmill plotting super-awesome outdoor runs, so I was a little disappointed to take the stroller with me on both my runs this weekend which means a super slow pace and not much adventure. ¬†It’s the reality of living with a very low sleep needs child. ¬†I am only alone for about 7-8 hours a day and I choose to sleep during those. ¬†Silly me. ¬†Still, outside was nice. ¬†I hoping to do a little better next weekend and that these freakin’ freezing cold mornings are over.

I bit the bullet and signed up for the Walnut Creek trail race. ¬†I love Walnut creek, and consider it a grossly under used trail by Austin runners. ¬†Everyone piles on the greenbelt when Walnut creek offers more miles of real trail (I am not a fan of the “unofficial” off trail, trails of the greenbelt), more runnable terrain, and is a closer drive for a lot of folks. ¬† I really wanted a small challenge before summer starts and I have a couple months of downtime before starting to think of fall marathon prep. ¬†I am strictly running the trail race for fun, but if yesterday is any indication, I have some work to do. ¬†So the next few weeks will be all about cramming in some work, minus another treadmill stint. ¬†The picture above is from the last time I ran it, which is a really long time ago. ¬†My thoughts: ¬†1. ¬†I hope I’ve lost some weight since then. ¬†Someone should have told me not to wear running skirts. ¬†2. ¬†There’s no way in hell I will ever run that fast again. ¬†That wasn’t even my best time and it’s still probably 30 minutes faster than I could run now. ¬†3. ¬†I didn’t have trail shoes then, and I don’t have trail shoes now. ¬†My shoes were old lady shoes even back then. ¬†4. ¬†It looks green and pretty and fun. ¬†I just need a nice fun run and there’s a playground nearby for Jaspy. ¬†Most races should be this way.

Ok…the vacuum is calling by name.   Dog hair be gone….