Wednesday, March 19, 2014

So hello again...

Since my last post, the blogging has been hard to make happen.  But this is important to me, so here I am, sitting down to write and trying to recapture in my own mind the various ups and downs of a little over two weeks gone by.

Highlight reel:
  • March 1 was the Miller Park Zoo Stampede - a 5k race I've done several times now, generally considered the kick-off to the racing season.  Race report partly drafted, forthcoming.
  • I got some terrible news, some of which I blogged about, and in the following week it was followed by some more bad news on the home front which I won't be blogging about - the sort of thing that affects me emotionally, but indirectly, and isn't really my news to share.  
  • Then I got some news at work... big changes on the forefront there, been on the horizon for quite a while, the sort of thing that is probably great in the long run but causes enormous uncertainty in the short term (accountants HATE uncertainty, so you can imagine this long wait is killing me).  I can't really share until everything is official, but anyway there was a really disappointing delay.
  • There's been some traveling, which is always tough on the whole diet and fitness routine.  Results on that front have been a mixed bag.  Some great, healthy meals, some terrific choices... and some seriously poor choices and fast food debacles.  I snapped pix of a couple winners:
    Healthy dinner, courtesy of the hubs.
    Healthy dinner, courtesy of Yours Truly.
  • This past weekend was my anniversary - we had 19 years to celebrate and we did it up quite nicely - hubs made a great dinner on Thursday, we headed to our local pub for drinks with friends on Friday and had a nice romantic meal on Saturday night with (well, it was St. Patrick's Day weekend) plenty of Irish whiskey to toast with.  
  • Anniversary Selfie!
  • Also this weekend, the Annual St. Patrick's Day 5k on Sunday afternoon.  This is a great, fast, flat 5k and I've run it several times now.  Last year I set a PR at this race.  This one is special because a) they have fantastic shirts!  b) it's super flat so MANY runners get a PR to start their racing season; and c) the weather is completely unpredictable.  Two years ago it was so hot, they ran out of water at the finish line before I was able to finish.  (MAJOR BUMMER.)  Last year the weather was just about perfect - chilly but not cold, not windy.  This year... well, I'll have a race report for you on that one, too.
After the race on Sunday, I headed home to walk the dogs, pack and hit the road for a short, two-night trip.  It's about a 3-hour drive, so I headed out about 5pm, happy I had gotten plenty of exercise.

Speaking of exercise... that's actually been going quite well.
  • I've been getting at least 3 runs in each week, plus the occasional dog walk.  
  • I've made it to all but one of my Ride The Wave group runs (one I missed because I was out of town), including a BRUTAL hill workout.  The hill workout itself mightn't have been so bad, but it was cold and damp and windy and I REALLY had to do some self-talk to get myself over there.  
  • We had such incredibly beautiful weather last Monday, I left work a bit early and joined a group training run on impulse at 5:30pm.  I hooked up with a running buddy and we did about 3.5 miles with Coty.  It.  Was.  Amazing.  I haven't been that excited about a run in ages - the weather was in the 50s and the sun was out... I could not have wished for better conditions and we took full advantage, including avoiding the remaining patches of stubborn ice that hadn't yet melted.
Sadly, those weather conditions have faded somewhat, but they'll be back in a matter of weeks and I really can't wait.  This winter has been so ugly and draining, the only way to avoid talking about the weather has been to Just.  Not.  Speak.

Which brings me to the weigh-in portion of my post.
As I've said, it's been a pretty good run (hahaha, get it?) for exercise during recent weeks, and a mixed bag on the nutrition side of the equation, so it won't surprise you that the scale has had this to say:
  • March 1 - down 0.8 to 184.8
  • March 8 - up 1.6 to 186.4
  • March 16 - down 0.6 to 185.8
Overall, up one pound.  I have some more to say about this, but this post is plenty long, I'll leave it to another time.

Being out of town early this week, I missed an opportunity to run on Monday, but yesterday I drove the 3 hours back home in the afternoon and arrived in time to change and join my Catch The Wave group for our Tuesday group run.  I wore my snazzy new St. Pat's 5k shirt and it was fun to see SO MANY other leaders (and a few group members!) wearing it as well.

Before the run, the CTW director had arranged to have my physical therapist there to show the group a pre-run dynamic stretching routine.  Most of the stretches were quite familiar to me, but I learned a new one.  After the run, I talked to him about some neck pain I've been dealing with.  He asked where, started to massage the area (for about 2 seconds) and immediately suggested I call for a free Injury Assessment.  Based on his IMMEDIATE response, I suspect he knows exactly what it is and what I should do about it.  I'd better make that call.  This neck thing has been bothering me for months and I've been wondering if I needed to see a chiropractor about it.  I've never been to one, and don't LOVE the idea, but something needs to be done.  I've been in pretty much constant but manageable pain.

Today I'm back in my office wrapping up a few projects and I'll be joining my Ride The Wave group tonight for a 3-mile run on the trail.

Well I may have left some things out, but that's the long and the short of it for the past 2 1/2 weeks.  Race reports to follow just as soon as I can get them done.  I'll close with a great quote I got this week from the wonderful folks over at Runner's World:

The secret of change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new. 


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