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Preview: Amy's Running Life

Amy's Running Life

Wife. Mother. Business Partner. And sometimes a runner.

Updated: 2018-03-06T09:41:26.571-05:00




And mediocre things really must go.

My last post seemed to be a big hit to my three followers, so I figured why not go out on a positive note?

I've been posting on this blog since October 2005.  I've met a ton of really nice people, from near and distant lands.  And for that, I am very thankful.  But, my choice of athletic endeavours has changed a lot - as has my life in general.  I still think running is the bees knees, but my life as a full-time-stay-at-home-mom, married to an ever busy small business owner just doesn't afford the time to devote to long distance running.  I'm still running.  But, it's mostly a really slow and long run when the moon and stars align just right (or on Tuesday's when my favorite sister comes over to relieve me of my mommy duties).  For all those other days in between, I will continue to CrossFit.  What can I say?  As much as I complain about it, I continue to go back.  I guess I'm an addict.

Thanks for all the memories bloggy friends.  I have truly enjoyed this 8 year trip with you guys...and I look forward to the day when I can share all of these entries with Brenna.


Go Instead...with Inner Strength...Young Grasshopper....


Yesterday, about 9am, I was having some serious anxiety.  I was jealous and envious and I'm sure if I had of looked in the mirror, my face would have been as green as grass.  I just couldn't take it anymore...or could I?  I was constantly refreshing news feed was a buzz with all things Boston Marathon.And, me?  I sat in my living room and wanted to cry.  Real tears.I was so overcome with feelings of inadequacy (cue the Celias theme music) and anger and self-loathing.I WANTED TO BE THERE.   Joining the festivities.  Brushing elbows with Kenyans.  Getting ready for the run of my life.  But, hell, I can't even find the time to get a measly 5k worked into my week.So, at approximately 2:30, after watching the finishes and pictures and joy of my friends finishing the marathon, I decided that I needed a break from Facebook.Like, a permanent break.Because, really, it was FACEBOOK that was inciting this jealousy.Right?All this time I would have been happy and content if I just hadn't ever looked at FACEBOOK.Right?I deleted my iPhone Facebook app and at approximately 3pm I decided to look at my news feed via iPad one more last goodbye.And there it was....the first status update in my news feed was from someone I haven't seen since high school..."two explosions Boston Marathon."I leapt to my feet and immediately texted Brenna's godparents.  They were there...he had just finished of the many locals I of the many I had been jealous of.  There was alot of chaos.  People trying to get in touch with others...Facebook was a buzz with "has anyone heard from so and so?"  It was panic and terror on this end...and from the texts I was receiving it was confusion and fear on their end.  Fast forward - we all know now what transpired.  Thankfully all of our local athletes are now safe and sound in their own beds in Georgia.But, as for me.  This whole situation...everything from start to finish...watching the camaraderie of the running has inspired me.  All of those people I was jealous of on Monday morning...they have now all become my inspiration.I went to the Track tonight.  We were having a welcome home party for our local athletes....a way to boost their spirits and remind them that amidst the despair, they accomplished something remarkable.  I got there a bit early.  I just run one quiet mile.  A wise man was almost gray-haired, IronMan tattoo sporting, wise man....I told him the story of my I tried to blame Facebook for ironic it was that if I had deleted my account it probably would have been hours before I realized anything had happened (we live in cable television's no-man's land....).  That wise man with the crooked hat and the fresh tattoo said "when I realize something is right for me I'm always jealous to see other people doing it.  If I didn't like doing it, if I didn't care about it, I wouldn't care if anyone else was doing it either.  Maybe you felt that way because it's really what you are supposed to be doing."Why hadn't I ever thought about that?  Why would I care how accomplished all of these people were, if running wasn't right for me?  It's all so clear now.The best time of my athletic life have been the years I spent as the Grasshopper.  Running was never about losing weight or looking good naked.  It was about the thrill of doing things that I never thought were possible.  It was that moment when I felt like I couldn't I would dig deep and find that there was a whole other person inside of me that I never knew existed.  It was that motivation and drive that kept me coming has brought me back." If that [failure] is our destiny, you cannot change it. But do not go with fear, Grasshopper; fear is eternal darkness. Go instead with inner strength, for it is like a deep riv[...]



Since 2005, when I first got bitten by the running bug, I have tried all sorts of things to stay active and healthy - running (from marathon training to hard-core "POD" training), bootcamps (where people really do yell at you and call you when you don't show up and tell you have 'chunky monkey legs'), personal training (post-pregnancy scaredy-catness), kickboxing (relieving stress), yoga (relieving more stress), pilates (because someone told me I would have abs of steel by doing it), and now CrossFit (because my husband told me I'd love it.  And I do).My life has changed alot since 2005, and likewise, so have my goals, my priorities, and really - my life in general.  Don't believe me?  Go back and read this gem (my first month running).The biggest struggle for me in the last two years isn't motivation.  It isn't the hard work.  And it isn't the lack of inspiration that surrounds  me.  It's the routine of it all, and trying to fit all the necessary workouts into a schedule that revolves around caring for a toddler.If you didn't already know, my primary job is being a stay-at-home mom.  Little B goes to a 3 hour Mother's Morning Out group, twice a week, most weeks.  One day I use that time to run errands (have you EVER tried to grocery shop with a rowdy two-year old?), and the other day I use to work for our small business.  In between those six hours lies another 162 hours that is spent feeding, bathing, and entertaining the rowdy two- year old.  I am also responsible for the upkeep (think: laundry, dishes, vacuuming, cleaning toilets, etc) of our 3,100 square foot home - and when the weather finally turns warm I'll be responsible for alot of flower bed maintenance (remind me again why the three of us can't live in a cozy 800 sq ft apartment?).  At any rate, there's also the issue of sleep, and that I require at least seven hours per night of that pesky task.  So, my hours are numbered...sweet Little B does still sleep for two hours every  afternoon (okay, 'most' afternoons).  I usually use that time to decompress, eat some lunch, and get prepared for the afternoon festivities (cooking dinner, playing outside, giving B a bath, etc).  I would LOVE to use that time to get a CrossFit workout in, or go for a quick run...but, I can't leave her at home or let her sleep in the car; and besides the legality of all of that, CrossFit isn't even open during naptime (although I'm sure I could find a work-around with that one).And the most important thing of all: that girl needs her nap.  If you have kids, you know what I speak.I've tried a few "creative" things recently to get workouts in....I hired a babysitter to go to CrossFit with me two days a week.  That was convenient, but expensive and I just couldn't continue the arrangement in good faith to my family.  Besides, as convenient as it was for me, it was pretty inconvenient for B, with all the driving back and forth (we live 22 minutes from the nearest CrossFit [and the only CF I plan on joining]).  I just felt some serious mommy-guilt for shuttling her all over town.I also struck up a deal with our CrossFit's co-owner.  I pick her three kids up twice a week (their school is less than five minutes from my house), take them to CrossFit; and in turn, they play with B while I workout.  In theory, this arrangement really really works.  Little B loves those girls, and they love her.  But, as I found out two weeks ago, I can't be in the middle of a WOD - sweat drenched, trying to beat the clock to get as many reps as possible, barely able to breath much less speak - and find out Little B has a stinky diaper.  Thank goodness the co-owner sortof remembered how to change a diaper (it's been like 10 years since her girls needed a diaper changed), but it totally threw me off my game and I realized then and there that I would need to focus on strength work on those days (or skills, or anything that would allow me [...]



So, remember back around the holidays when I quit paleo?  Yeah....well...about the same time I began to get a mysterious rash on the side of my stomach, and sometimes on my back.  I chalked it up to stress.  We were in the middle of moving from one house to another, and...we lived with my parents for three weeks...three....whole...weeks.... That last part - living with your parents when you haven't in almost 20 years - yeah, that's enough stress to drive anyone over the edge.At any rate, we closed on one house....closed on the new house...spent a week getting moved unpacked....settled in...less was good....but yet, my little gross rash continued.   I finally decided to figure out what was wrong.  I haven't changed soaps, detergents, lotions, anything.  I am not stressed in the least (anymore so than my normal OCD/AR stressed-outness causes me).  I am back to Crossfitting (more on that later) and really really thinking about running again (a big step, these days).  The only logical explanation is food.F.O.O.D.I began the process of slowly eliminating various food irritants.  I started with the obvious - wheat.  I was certain that was it...and honestly, I hoped that was it.  It would give me an easy excuse to say 'no thanks' to breads, pasta, waffles, pancakes, cupcakes, donuts, brownies, cake and any other  wheat-filled products. I noticed some days were better than others, but by and large the rash was still there.  So, I went to the next logical irritant - dairy.  I don't drink milk so I had to be a little more intentional with this one.  I ate alot of cheese and didn't blush by how much sour cream I put on my non-paleo baked potato for a solid week, to see if it would get remarkably worse.  And then, I cut it out for a week, to see if it got remarkably better.Nothing remarkable happened except that I found out that I can eat an entire block of cheese in one day.  I might need to remember that, lest I ever enter an all-you-can-eat-cheese-eating contest.I spent the next few weeks trying to eliminate all the weird stuff - anything "enriched," hydrogenated oils, soy protein isolate, maltodextrin, monoglycerides, cellulose gum, Polysorbate 60, and calcium sulfate....On a side note, REALLY people look at the ingredients list on the foods you are serving your family....the above ingredients can all be found in hamburger helper (barf), swiss cake rolls, twinkies, and lucky charms. At any rate, as I begin to eliminate, overcompensate, and just eat happy and crappy, I noticed that there was one common theme to my rash:It happened when I ate processed foods.So, if it isn't the wheat, the soy isolate, the MSG...then what the heck is it??????The only thing S.U.G.A.R.After many trials and errors (most notably with dark chocolate almond milk), I seem to have contracted an irritation or intolerance to refined sugar (I eliminated fruit, as well, in one of my experiments, with no adverse side effects).And after some pretty extensive Google research, I guess I'm not alone.  Apparently, cutting out entire food categories, can cause a reaction when those foods are reintroduced.  The research shows that it may not be a temporary reaction either - it may be an intolerance all along that was overlooked or attributed to something else.  A good read on this sort of thing is Wheat Belly by Gary Taubes, with the case of wheat (duh), or Your Hidden Food Allergies are Making you Fat by Roger Deutsch and Rudy Rivera, M.D. (for pretty much everything else - try to get past the marketing aspect of having a full blown lab panel...yes, it's quicker but I got to the same point and didn't have to pay a deductible).So, where do I go from here? My only suggestion thus far is to eat a cupcake laced with Benadryl. Since that's not very practical - Benadryl knocks me out for 6 hours minimum - I guess I'm going to have to....[...]



Keeping with my true manic relationships with exercise and food, I have once again quit something I started.CrossFit and Paleo.Well, sortof....I've had this love-hate relationship with the scheduling of CrossFit for the last six months or so.  Most "boxes" are open really early in the morning, closing mid-morning, and reopen around mid- to late afternoon.  The one I attended was no different.  I see the point - there isn't alot of traffic during the day, so why fool with the extra overhead of lights, employees to man the empty building, etc.  Believe me, I totally get it.  But...that doesn't preclude me from being aggravated with it...on a daily basis.See, I'm a stay-at-home mom.  Every week, with the exception of the 6 hours she attends a local mother's morning out program, my sweet sweet daughter is with me.  At my feet.  On my  hip.  Craving entertainment, food, and a clean diaper.  Don't get me wrong - I wouldn't change any of it.  I'm so thankful and blessed beyond measure that I get to see all of her moments - the good, the bad, and all of the amazement in between.  But, that still doesn't preclude me from being aggravated with the schedule...on a daily basis.Trying to coordinate my workout schedule with a husband who does not have a consistent even more frustrating.  Case in point - we are staying with my parents for three weeks while we are in between selling one house and moving to another - every night my sweet sweet parents want to know what time Troy will be home for dinner.  My response - every single night?  "I have no idea.  It could be 5:30...It could be 10:00."  Of course, that doesn't preclude them from continuing to ask hear the definition of insanity?I digress.Because of my husband's crazy work schedule, it is imperative that he workout at the crack of dawn.  Which means we both can't work out at the crack of dawn (there's all the laws about leaving toddlers at home to fend for themselves....).  So, I tried (three times, I tried) to go to CrossFit as soon as I dropped my sweet daughter off at mother's morning out.  I dropped her promptly at 9:00am....sped over to CF to begin the WOD around 9:15.  The WOD might take anywhere from 5 minutes to 25 minutes.  And then there is the period after the WOD that I had to catch my breath, realize that I didn't die, and regain my composure.  That usually took another 5 minutes.  And then CrossFit closed at 10:00.In other words, I was racing to drop my child to get to to get the WOD to cool down...and all that racing made me realize that I need more than 45 minutes twice a week to work out.  So, I decided to give running another try.  And it turns out, while I've lost most of my endurance, it was just as fun as I remembered it being.I'm going back to being a runner.  The schedule is accommodating.  I can do it most anywhere.  And if I'm really in a pinch, I can toss B in a stroller and we can take off.It solves all of my exercising woes.  And it's still fun.I'll still do some CrossFit-ish things at home...squats, pushups, double unders, burpees...and maybe in the Fall when B starts a more regular preschool routine, I'll be able to go back to CrossFit.But, in the meantime, watch out 35-39 age group.  I'm back to take my rightful place in the center of the pack.As for Paleo...well, that's a different story.About 5 months into doing "paleo-ish" (80% paleo/20% non-paleo), I noticed that I started to get really moody.  I would even go as far as to say I felt depressed.  I've never been depressed in my life, so I'm not totally sure that is a correct diagnosis, but it was just general sadness for no good reason.  I began to do a little Google research about what could be the cause.   I kept co[...]



The end of summer was always so blissful for me.  While all of my friends were lamenting over the thought of going back to school, I quietly got great satisfaction out of making my "back to school list."  My organized-mother would have us fill out an index card with a list of what we currently had - 6 pairs of white socks, 4 pairs of underwear, 1 pair of jeans, 3 t-shirts, 4 pencils, 7 black pens, etc.  She would combine our list of what we had, with her list of what we needed; and crank out a master list of what was left to be was always the *secret* highlight of my year.

For me, new things, like school clothes and supplies, always symbolize a do-over.  I can do things differently, better, or, if I'm really risky,  not at all. 

So, as I sat this week and made my list of goals for do-overs...the things I wanted to change, be better at, or just forget that I ever tried them...running kept rearing it's head, screaming "hey, what about me?"

And, hey what about running?

It's been a good three years since I've actually trained for something...ran for a purpose.

There's been all sorts of reasons...defenses...excuses...for my lack of running.  If I listed all of the cop-outs I've used over the last three years...I'd still be here typing in another three years.

So, I sucked up my pride; pulled my Garmin out of the drawer; and retrieved my running shoes from the farthest depths of my closet.

And I showed up to the track club's annual New Year's Day run.

I was surprised at how many of the faces I didn't recognize.  There is a whole new crew of runners when you sit out for this long.  The people that I do know...well, I haven't seen most of them in so long...especially not on this was awkward and a little uncomfortable but I vowed to put one foot in front of the other and keep moving.

As I suspected, I was the only person running at my pace; and since the runs were 5.5+ miles, I knew I would eventually - or entirely - be running alone.

And, it was in those first few minutes of running that I realized what I missed the most about running...

The comfortable solitude. 

I wasn't far enough back to not be able to see the rest of the group, but I was far enough back to be in my own running world...steering my thoughts towards the New resolutions...and maybe even a new Garmin.  I was able to have 30 minutes of peace and quiet (I don't get that often with a toddler running around all day)...30 minutes of doing something for myself just because I could.  Not because I needed to.  Not because I had to.  Just because I wanted to.

I forgot what that feeling was like.

So, as I begin 2013...with a slow three mile run...I am reminded of all those years of do-overs...and all the opportunities given...and all the opportunities taken away.  My hope for 2013 is that I find as much satisfaction in running as I have in all my many do-overs over the last 36 years.

Happy 2013.



I know all six of my readers have been on pins and needles waiting for my report - did CrossFit keep me prepared for a half marathon?The report is in...and yes...alarmingly, yes...CrossFit did make me completely and utterly prepared to run 13.1 miles.  In case you missed all the other posts - I ran about 30 miles all year long and did alot of CrossFit in preparation for this half-marathon....haha...who am I kidding?  I did nothing to prepare for the half, and only did CrossFit because it is so totally awesome and way better than just running on any day - even a sunny day where the temperature never gets above 70 degrees and the wind is always at my back.   Yep, CrossFit rocks more than that most perfect run.  But, I digress....While I did have a small amount of knee pain that went as quickly as it came, muscular/skeletolly speaking, I never felt better.  My legs and my lungs were literally taking a jog around the park. (And for the record, "skeletolly" is not a word but it really should be).Unfortunately, the other stupid things I did along the way almost ruined the whole race for me. For example:- I didn't look at the weather report prior to packing for the race.  This one should have been easy, but in all my non-preparation for this event, looking at the local weather report wasn't ever on my radar (no pun intended...I promise).  I brought long sleeves, gloves, a fleece, ear warmers, and long sleeves.  I mention the sleeves twice because by the time I finished the race it was nearly 80 degrees.  And I was in long sleeves.  Around mile 5,  I **almost** convinced myself that I was in good enough shape to run in just my bra.  Like I said, I **almost** had myself was cold in 2011, I just ASSUMED it would be cold again...- Hydrate.  At least once.  Before mile 7.  Again, this should have been easy, but at some point between mile 4 and mile 6, I convinced myself that passing every water stop was a good idea.  It did not help at all that those miles were where all the crowds were...and that my watch had me clocking a sub-9 minute pace.  I really didn't want to stop the momentum.  Unfortunately, my lack of hydration caught up with me at mile 10 where I stopped. Dead. In. My. Tracks.  Hunched over....holding the aching cramp in my sternum...police and medical personnel staring me directly in the face.  Had they come over to check on me, I would have quit right then and there.  But, they never even asked if I needed assistance, so I dug DEEP and began a slow jog....trot...walk...method that I would continue for the next 3.1 miles. - Thinking that Pandora was a good option for music.   During my only two training runs for this event, I switched back and forth from the Missy Elliot station, to the "Call Me Maybe" station.  It got me through those two dreadful 12 mile I was certain it would get me through another dreadful 13.1 miles.  Except that either Verizon sucked, or my iPhone sucked because I got 3/4 of the way through "Call Me Maybe" during my first mile and then heard dead silence for another 4 miles.  Dead silence.  For another 4 miles.  Then I got 4.5 miles of Missy Elliot...and the rest of the race...dead. silence.  It was miserable.  I a respectable time and much faster than my 2011 time.  Had I not made those elementary mistakes above, I would have been much happier with my time.  And, had it not been for CrossFit, I would have never made it beyond mile 2.  I'm pretty sure of that.So, thank you CrossFit for making me stronger and happier than I ever thought I could be.  And thank you to the police and medical personnel at mile 10 for not helping me - because had you been doing your job, I probably would have been carted back to the race st[...]



This is a question I have been constantly asking myself...and even more frequently, Googling to find the answer.Specifically, I wanted to know: "could I just do CrossFit 3-5 times a week and still be prepared for a half marathon?"And yes, in my quest to not actually go run, I Googled that question more times than I care to count.I found alot of information about CrossFit athletes and their running endeavours.  Most agreed that you could solely train with CrossFit and still finish - up to a half marathon, in a respectable amount of time.  But, what they also concluded was that there needed to be some incorporation of "CrossFit Endurance" or "CrossFit Football."  I was too lazy and, honestly, a little too scared to delve further and find out what "endurance" or "football" really were.  I mean, let's be real...I've been at this CrossFit gig for exactly one year now.  I am immensely more stronger than I was last October, but I still suck at it.  I can't do double-unders.  I still scale my weight down at least 10 pounds.  And, as a I discovered yesterday, I am awesomely horrible at power snatches.  BUT, I have lost upwards of 12 pounds and at least 3 body fat percentage points.  And, well, if I'm being real, I'll just let you know that I could stand in front of a mirror and look at myself naked all day long....CrossFit has a way of making you THAT proud of the little accomplishments.  So, with the Savannah Half Marathon less than a month away, I finally came to terms with myself.  I decided that at some point I needed to run for two hours.   My best half-marathon time was around 1:50 and my not so best was around 2:24, so I convinced myself that meeting in the middle would be sufficient.  I figured it wouldn't be pleasant and it certainly wouldn't be pretty; but if I could just put one foot in front of the other for 2 non-stop hours, I would be ready for Savannah.  Or I would end up at the orthopedic office.  And if I ended up in the ortho's office, at least I gave it a fighting chance.I think I planned the run twelve times over the last three weeks.  I planned it....something came up...I rescheduled it....something came up....rescheduled...another plan-breaker...twelve times over.  Finally, I decided that Sunday, October 14 would be my day.  I recruited Brenna's godmother to run with me and we agreed that we'd do a 6 mile loop twice....I needed an escape plan in case things went really south within the first hour.We met at 6am and by 6:30 we were off.I'd like to say that it was amazing or that the challenge of it all made me a stronger person....but, really?  It was sort of easy.  Granted we weren't running any rock star pace (10:20 overall), but I never felt like I couldn't do it.  Sure, my left hip hurt for a minute and then my right knee began to scream a little.   My shoes were rubbing my heels and the little bone on the inner part of my right foot felt weird.  I could feel my toes getting bruised, knowing that inevitable black toenail would resurface.  I wished I hadn't worn brand new minimalist shoes for a not-so-minimalist run.  And on the second loop, I wanted some better headphones.But, what surprised me the most?  My heart.  I never once felt like I was taxing it.  Actually, I never once felt like my heart rate got even remotely high.  I really could have carried on an entire conversation for two solid hours - one foot in front of the other.  It was the strangest feeling to just run and run and run and feel like (other than the pains in my joints or tendons), I wasn't doing anything at all.  My muscles never ached.  My lungs never screamed to stop.  My feet just kept telling to me to keep going and going and going.So, back to  my own question -"Could[...]



Challenges...challenges...we all face them.  Whether it's becoming drug-free, or just getting all the laundry sorted and put away...we all have our challenges.  And then some of us are dumb enough to make up challenges (side note: when I say "dumb" I am ONLY referring to myself).Insert the challenges I agreed to participate in over the next 9 weeks:The LuRong Living Paleo Challenge  The Bingo Card The Savannah Rock n Roll Half Marathon 100 Burpees for 100 DaysThe first one, the LuRong Challenge, was supposed to be a way for our gym to possibly win a $50,000 makeover.  It's the one I'm most aggravated that I signed up for.  It cost $50 (that does go to a charity of sorts), but that's not what gets's the fact that I'm supposed to eat 100% Paleo all day, every day.  Guess what?  I like my cheats.  I like a good glass of chocolate almond milk.  I like a blizzard after a steak meal.  Why yes, yes I would like fries with that.  And ketchup too.  Don't get me wrong...I've LOVED this whole Paleo thing.  See blog post below to see my testament to all things Paleo.  But, I LOVE to cheat and not feel guilty about it. The Bingo Card.  We did this back in April and I really think it gave me the jump start that I needed to get "more" serious about CrossFit.  I would have never attended a Signature Saturday if it weren't for those bingo spaces.  I didn't win the competition but I did get a bottle opener for my efforts (which opens my very non-Paleo Fat Tire), and I realized during that month that I really really really love CrossFit.  For some reason, this time around, my heart is just not in it.  I'm much more intrigued by figuring out how to do a correct Power Snatch, then I am trying to best my prowler-pushing time.  BUT, if you are new to CrossFit or just need a kick start to doing some things you never thought you were capable of, I suggest signing up for the Bingo Challenge.The Savannah Half Marathon...what can I say?  I'm a glutton for signing up for races and then not training for them.  This one won't be any different.  I've run 3 consecutive miles since April.   This time, it's not that my heart isn't it, it's that running gets pushed to the bottom of my to-do list...that place where I have 1 to 2 hours of free time in day sans toddler, and I'm not having to pay a babysitter $10 per hour to chase after that precious baby....oh yeah...that place doesn't exist in my world.100 Burpees for 100 Days.  I suggest reading the link above.  It says way more than I could ever say about this challenge.One thing I have learned during this last week is that I've got alot more challenges to OVERCOME before I can commit to challenges that are made up by well-intentioned masochists.This morning as I was completing round 6 of "Black Jack" (7 rounds of 7 thrusters, 7 pullups, 7 burpees), I had a lot of time to think...I realized that my fitness level has decreased significantly since I gave up the 50/20 plan (50 reps of back squats or strict presses in 20 minutes).  I realized that I shouldn't have to break up 7 thrusters into 3-3-1 especially when I wasn't even close to Rx.  I realized that taking a week off because I was overwhelmed with packing and moving and having a yard sale and, oh yeah, having a child that had 2 pre-op appointments and minor surgery; causes me to suck at thrusters and burpees (I will always suck at pullups).I realized that MY challenge is just getting to CrossFit 6 days a week.  Stepping over the mound of laundry that needs to be washed, walking past the sink full of dishes, turning my head to the coffee that wasn't brewed, and getting in my car and showing up.  I have so much to gain by just showing up and doing the posted WOD, practicing [...]



I've been trying to find some inspiration to write about my recent journey down paleo-lane.  For some reason, the only thing I can come up with is:Down 7 pounds and 2 body fat percentage points in a month.   And, after that little piece of heaven, I've got nothing.You see, going paleo really hasn't been that hard.  It's hard to count calories and weigh them against exercise.  It's hard to track a point system that gives an avocado the same point ranking as donut holes.  It's hard to micromanage protein and fat and carbohydrates and take into consideration the glycemic index of the foods you do eat.All of that is hard.Paleo (disclaimer: in my non-nutritionist/dietitian/physician opinion) is not hard.Don't eat grains.  Any of them.Don't eat dairy.   Any of it.Don't eat anything processed.  All of it.Make sure I eat alot of meat, vegetables, fruit, seeds & nuts.  And to flavor things up, I eat alot of spices....spices that I never even knew I had in my cabinets.That's it.  I do cheat.  Sometimes I do 85/15 (approximately 3 meals a week that are non-paleo), sometimes I do 100/0 (all meals are paleo), and sometimes I do 0/100 (zero meals are paleo).  When I do that last one, I can definitely tell that something is amiss in my body.  When I cheat, that little muffin top around my middle shows back up to remind me that sugar is bad.  Processed is bad.  Grains are bad.  And there is nothing like feeling puffy to make me straighten up and fly right.  Cooking has been fun.  I've cooked everything from spaghetti to mashed potatoes to peach cobbler.  And I've made it all within paleo guidelines (shout out to my friend Google for making things so easy to find).   I've actually put thought into my meals, and had a good time learning.  Did you know that homemade salad dressing is sooooo much better than the stuff you get in a bottle?  And it has no sugar, no xantham gum, no Polysorbate 60, and no natamyxin (seriously, what the heck is that last stuff??).  And raisins and honey make a great sugar base for sweet dishes that normally call for sugar.  Everyone (okay, 3 of my FB friends) has asked me about cost.  It's got to be more expensive, right?  And I guess it is.  I did up our "food budget" for the month, but only because 1) I wasn't sure how much everything would cost 2) I wanted to buy organic if available 3) I'm too lazy to price shop (please don't tell my husband about that last part).  So, yes for us, it has been more expensive.  But, my husband's opportunity cost by letting me spend more money is that he has a wife who looks hot naked*.  Anyone could do it on a lesser budget, with a little bit of time and patience.  Contrary to popular belief, buying meat from a local wholesaler (grass-fed all the way) is not marginally more expensive than buying it from the grocery store (and we don't even want to begin to talk about the vast taste differences between "real" fresh and "visually" fresh meat.  Local markets are not marginally more expensive either, but the issue is availability.  You won't be able to get bananas from our local market - ever.  But, I make due with alot of local goodies that I might not have ever tried before. In my (completely unlicensed) opinion, paleo just means making a plan, and executing that plan with near perfection.   And anyone who knows me, knows I love a good plan....especially when I can chart it, blog about it, and make fancy binders with all my favorite paleo recipes in it.  So, in summary, while pale is not super-easy (you must plan), it's not nearly as hard as deciding whether to use those "food points" for one lean ground beef pat[...]



After much internal struggle on what to do with this blog, I've decided to give it one more try.  I've completely moved away from my running life and jumped on the whole CrossFit/Paleo bandwagon.On a daily basis someone from my FB (or life) posse asks me about CrossFit and/or Paleo.  I feel like I'm repeating myself, so this blog seems like a good enough medium to get it all out there.  I thought about starting a new one, but I've had over 25,000 views to this blog so I think I'll stick with what was working.  With that said, I am not a trainer or a dietitian or a nutritionist.  Heck, I'm not even that good at CrossFit, and I still have a tendency to eat crap food.   But, as I was told by one of our box trainers, I'm not here to tell you how to do either CF or paleo, but I am going to tell you about my experiences with both.Oh, and I really really missed writing!  So, with that out of the way - let me pick up where I left off.About 11 months ago, I made two statements to my then-personal trainer: I said I would never do CrossFit and paleo sounds stupid.  I think I made both of those statements on the same day.Now, here I am almost a year later, happy and addicted to both.Oh, and I'm 11 pounds lighter and at least 2 body fat percentage points lower.It's funny how life evolves like that.  The CF thing just sort of happened...Troy kept pestering me to check it out...I kept telling him I was fine with my current workout program...he kept pestering and I finally got tired of hearing "how great and wonderful CF is" so I broke down and went to the intro class.And it kicked my ass.  Literally.  I walked out of there feeling like I was in the worst shape of my life.  I had no idea that in a mere 9 minutes - squats, kettle bell swings, and pushups could make me want to throw up.  I mean, I was a runner for goodness sake!  And I had a personal trainer!Needless to say, I wanted more.  It's been almost a year since I made the switch and I still suck at CF.  I've yet to master anything "Rx" and I've yet to master anything really cool like consecutive double-unders or a real pull-up.  But, week in and week out I enjoy the challenge of it.  I enjoy knowing that, while I still can't do the prescribed weight for a thruster, I can do it correctly.  There have been many WODs (workout of the day) that  I've wanted to walk out on.  Effin' 50.  Cindy with a twist.  Kenyan Fran.  And quite possibly the worst WOD in the world - Pick a Card.  But, I've finished all of them.  Vomit in the back of my throat.  Feeling like I was going to die at any moment.  Legs jello.  Arms noodles.And 15 minutes later, I'm talking about what time I'll be there the next day.I had to have a c-section with Brenna, so I can't relate to the whole "you forget about childbirth" thing, but I can relate to the pain that I feel during a WOD - it disappears quickly so that I have the tenacity and  stupidity to come back for more the next day (except Pick A Card...I will never have love for that insanity).So, there you have it.  CrossFitter for the foreseeable future.  Tomorrow I am going to watch people from our CF compete in the Garage Games.  I'm not sure what I'm in for...I'm sure alot of excitement and envy.  And alot of encouragement to keep this thing going (the CF community has a way of making that happen).I plan to keep this blogging thing up.  I plan to write alot more about my CF journey.  I plan to post some the delicious meals we've eaten now that we've gone paleo.  And, I  plan to  eventually master some of those tough WODs as prescribed and live to tell about it.  [url=http://www.TickerFact[...]



When I started this blog, back in 2005, I had one some running friends.  At the time, our local track club seemed like more of an elite group, not one that would open their arms to someone who didn't know the difference between a fartlek and an actual fart.  (Full disclosure: the track club may have opened their arms but I was too terrified to find out).  So, I started this blog.  And wow, did I meet some friends!  Some local, some far away, some really experienced runners, and some just getting started like me.  I've run races in San Diego with some of them...I've run races all over Georgia with some of them...some I've never met....and some have driven and/or flown to my wedding.  And one special blogger friend has made my fear of snakes become a full-fledged phobia. 

And while I've really enjoyed blogging about my journey of becoming a runner, alot has happened since that day in 2005 when I told my very new boyfriend "I think I want to run a marathon."  That new boyfriend is now my great husband, and the father to our beautiful daughter.  And while I've actually started running again, I'm ready to hang up this blog. 

I'd rather use my writing skills to continue writing letters to Brenna (I've been writing a letter to her every week or so since I found out I was pregnant).  I'd also like to just take things off of my plate.   Life changes, priorities change, and well, honestly, some things just aren't as fun anymore. 

Forcing myself to keep up with this blog is one thing that has become not-so-fun.

So, there you have it.  I'm done.  I can permanently mark off of my to-do list "post to your blog."  And that makes me happy.  I would like to say that I will miss all of you, but honestly, I'm friends with most of you on FaceBook (and if I'm not - look me up!) so I will still get to keep up with you and vice versa.

Thanks for hanging in there through it all! 

Have a great Wednesday :)



Last weekend, over dinner, our friend (who happens to not only be a fast runner, but also the general manager of our local running specialty stores), told us that he thinks all runners have some sort of addiction...himself included.I couldn't have agreed with him more.As I think back to 2005, when I started this whole running thing, I was highly addicted to smoking, eating Snickers bars for lunch, and washing down my dinner of Wendy's fries with an ice cold beer.  It's safe to say, I was in a much different place back then.  I started running to curb my addiction to all those bad things.  And I've been running every since to curb or stave off one addiction after another (mostly in the sugary-sweet food arena).So, it comes as no surprise to myself that I've become addicted to CrossFit.  I look at our local CrossFit's FB page right before I go to bed every night, and as soon as I wake up in the morning.  I have a dire need to know what the WOD (workout of the day) is.  All-the-time.  I have caught myself Googling "Fran" and "Murph" and most recently "Helen" just so I can watch other stronger and faster people do what I don't do well.  I had a conversation with someone was totally unrelated to CrossFit...but I found myself using CF lingo in our discussion (AMRAP).  I just like an addicted to be stronger kind of way.  When I started running, I felt thinner, sleeker, and faster.  CrossFit just makes me feel like a badass.  All the time.  Even if I can't throw a hammer correctly, or touch my toes to the bar.  I still feel like an increasingly stronger badass.Every month there is a different challenge...lose some squats partner WODs...etc.  This month there is a Beach Body BINGO game.  I've never been a fan of bingo. I don't think it's a bad game, just boring.  I am too impatient to wait long enough to get BINGO (which is ironic, because on a daily basis I am trying to teach Bren about patience...). At any rate, as is true to my bad form, I have become addicted to the bingo game.  Five squares across and five down...25 total.  I am truly, madly, deeply in love with this game.  I do not just want to get BINGO, I want to put a big, fat black X over every single bingo square.  All 25 of them.  And the anticipation of fulfilling this dream is driving me nuts.  I want to be done with it today...18 days into the month...the anti-patience part of me is ready for this to be over.  Unfortunately, some squares can't be X'ed off until the end of the month (doing ab work everyday...besting my 1000m row time from the first of the month...going to at least 2 Signature Saturdays...etc).The part that is really getting me is the first column "Body"...those 5 squares are: lose five pounds, lose 2% body fat, drop a pants size, lose one or more inches from anywhere on my body (I picked my rear end), and have before/after photos done.   It's driving me bananas.  I lost 2.5 pounds only to gain 1.5 of it back.  I've only lost .6% of body fat.  And my inches...well, I think my initial measure is wrong because today my butt was one inch bigger than my first measurement 18 days ago.  I know the weight issue probably has to do with muscle mass.  I can tell that my pants are looser and contrary to measurements, I know my butt is smaller!  The BF % is another story...I'm sure the brownies and chocolate cake I had over the weekend could be a culprit.I also know this bingo game is supposed to be a motivator.  And it has been.  I've been incredibly reluctant to go to a Signature Saturday WOD...they always look so daunting. [...]



Yesterday, as I was vacuuming up day old eggs off the kitchen floor, I thought a lot about this little blog..and running...and the lack thereof. 

I started to question why I feel so guilty for not running.   I know I am eating healthy (outside of cookies for breakfast that one day last week) and I know I am getting plenty of exercise.  I've become pretty consistent (and quite addicted) to North Macon CrossFit.

So, why do I feel like I SHOULD be running, but I don't feel like I WANT to?

Troy always says guilt is a feeling from doing something wrong - so I guess I really don't feel "guilty" for not running.  I just feel weird.

And then yesterday, as I was cleaning up those eggs - thinking about how different my life is today than it was a year ago, 3 years ago, 10 years dawned on me - I have a new identity.  One of wife, mother, business partner, egg cleaner-upper.  For so long I identified myself as girlfriend and RUNNER.  And that was pretty much it.  [I was also an "employee" but really...I mean I was civil-service.  Need I say more?]

This new identity, for me, hasn't been able to add "runner" to the list of job requirements.  Now, don't get me wrong.  I still like to talk about running, watch other people run, and heck, I really do like getting out for a social run and/or race.  I even LIKE it when our WOD consists of running.  I just don't want to make it a "job" anymore.  Period.  I just want to do it when I want to and when I can. 

And guess what?  That's the upside to being an adult.  I can decide what I'm going to do or not do on a daily basis!

So, I'm going to stop obsessing over it.  So what - I'm no longer a "runner"?  I still know how to run (FYI: we all know how to's not overly difficult).  And maybe in six months, thanks to North Macon CrossFit, I will actually be strong enough to front squat the prescribed weight and run a fast 400!

I always wanted to be a stay-at-home mom.  It was something Troy and I discussed before we ever said "we do."  It's not always been peaches and cream.  Actually, it's not really been at all what I imagined.  But I've always known that, like my daily choice to not run, being a stay-at-home mom is a choice that we made and a choice I will NEVER regret. 

So, to this new that gets up at 5am to pound out 100 kettle bell swings, 100 pushups, 100 squats, and 100 less than 15 that lives and dies by a ridiculous routine of "make breakfast", "do laundry", "make lunch", "clean house", "make dinner" that in between those squats and folding laundry, involves teaching a 16 month old that the wall is yellow or that we wear socks on our feet, not on our hands:

Welcome aboard. 



When I was pregnant one of the worst things I could do for my sanity was to Google any sort of ailment I might have been having.  I can't tell you how many times my midwife said "your only orders are to NOT Google anything!"  Fast forward to 15 months later...and well, Google and I are on a first name basis.

Today's question: "why is my 15 month old whining all of the time?"

Yes, that was my question.  (I have an "old" iphone...otherwise I'd ask Siri all of these questions...)

Surprisingly, Google is much friendlier on the post-partum side of things.  Usually the search engine pops up with several blogs or forums where other people have posed, and found an answer, to said question.

This time I found out that little B is just frustrated.

And well, that's pretty dang frustrating for me.  I'm not sure what sort of answer I was looking for but hearing that she's just frustrated was not one of them.

She sleeps well...still takes two naps...eats like a champ...yet, anytime I walk out of the room, pretend like I'm walking out of the room, eat something different than what she has, try and type on the computer, go to the bathroom, make myself a glass of water...well, you get it...

It's not a cry.  It's not a scream.  It feels like it's much worse than either of those.

At least with a cry or a scream I'm pretty certain I know what's wrong.

Today we were having lunch.  She was having apples, green beans, and tomatoes.  I was having a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and some bbq chips.  Guess what little B did the whole time I was eating???  Whine and point at my food....I ended up giving her a piece of bread and that tided her over...for about 2 1/2 minutes.

I know she will move past this stage...and if you see us out in public she's the picture of perfection.  So happy and smiley.  So deceiving.  Everyone says to not wish they would grow up so fast, but sometimes I really wish she could tell me what the frustration is all about.  At least then I could fix it!

Well, I smell poop which is a tell-tale sign that B will be waking up from her nap.

Have a great day (and I hope you weren't eating lunch while you read this!)

First Run of 2012


I haven't run much this year.  That isn't a surprise to anyone that reads this blog.  I wish it wasn't that way and I am having a hard time "settling" on the fact that my life is too busy to find time to run.  I have been enjoying CrossFit immensely.  There is something addictive and energizing about the camaraderie of the group and the daily torture the WOD (workout of the day) presents.  I don't believe I will be giving it up anytime soon.  I have never felt so strong - even though I'm still the weakest of our morning group. But, I decided this week I was getting back into running.  If there is a will, there is way...right?  I started the week off by going to the Tuesday night track group.  I didn't  plan on doing their workout....1 mile repeats?  Yeah, I don't think plan was to run 3 miles while pushing Brenna in the stroller and holding a reasonably easy pace.  Oh, and not dying...that was on my agenda as well.  It turned out pretty good.  The only hangup was that Brenna seemed to get restless at about every 3/4 mile.  So, I made a pit stop at every mile to refuel her with water and bunny graham crackers.  I'm pretty sure she liked the arrangement.  And I didn't die.  Score one for Amy.  I did CrossFit the rest of the week, taking Friday as my "day off" or my slacker day...(by the way, taking a day off in exercise is a whole other blog post...would I take a day off of brushing my teeth?  eating lunch?  why do people take a day off of being healthy?) I decided to end my week with a race.  My first one of 2012.  I knew I was in no "race shape."  Those days are far behind me....for this race, I just wanted to see what I could do given that I haven't run since mid-January or so.  And I wanted to see if CrossFit had made me any stronger...maybe strong enough to run a half-decent race time with little or no effort (I know...blasphemy...why run if you aren't going to put in any effort).  At any rate, I chose to run the Cherry Blossom Road Race.  It one of the final events of our two week celebration of all things Cherry Blossom.  Pink suit coats, pink hats, pink ice cream, pink trashcans, pink lines painted down the center of the downtown looks like one big vomit of Pepto Bismol for these two weeks.  But, I love every minute of it!  (Our little town has more Cherry Blossom trees than all of DC - think 300,000 trees for Macon versus a little over 4,000 for DC.  Yes, they are everywhere...and yes they are beautiful!)The Cherry Blossom Road Race, during my short lifespan of running, has gone from a well-directed marathon and half-marathon, to a 5k and 15k, to a race that no one in their right mind would try and run...and now it has found new life by the fine folks at the Wesley Glen Ministries.  This is their second year taking over the race and they have taken it from 200+ participants, to well over 1200 for today's race.  It is phenomenal what happens when some mission-oriented people, with alot of passion and a little organization, get together.  I do believe it is now one of my local favorites!  It's a fairly easy course.  Starts with a climb but then levels out and is completely flat for 90% of the race.  There are a gajillion volunteers, plenty of water and snacks, music at the finish, bouncy places for kids to play, and my personal favorite aspect: all of the families and friends - otherwise non-or new runners - out there enjoying the day and getting healthy.  I was actually surprised at how few people I k[...]



With the home renovations nearly behind me - a walk-through with the contractor on Thursday, final appliance delivery on Friday, new French doors for the dining room, and a new front door - we will finally be done with projects (for this year, anyway).

I need this to be finished - pronto. This being my first project of this magnitude, I have learned quite a bit...not just about electricians and cabinet makers...but also about myself. It seems when my life gets really wackadoodle (in addition to the home stuff, we've had ALOT going on with the business...and let me not forget to mention that Brenna and I both fought off a stomach bug through this whole thing) any rate - wackadoodle life equals a state of paralysis for me. I have been completely amazed at my ability to do nothing over the last two to three weeks. It's like I don't know where to start, so I just won't start at all. I don't know, but I'm thinking that might be the sign of some serious OCD going on.

So, I need my house back so I can begin to get my life back in order. And Troy and Brenna need to eat....and wear clean I've got to find some ability to get it together - I envision Cher doing this to me....maybe that would get me moving.

And my lack of doing anything doesn't just stop with also transcends over to my exercise routine. I think I am the only person who can get up at 4:45am and not go to the gym because I feel paralyzed by the mess I have to pass on the way to the door. I'm so crazy that I don't even go back to sleep....I stay up...lying in bed...thinking about the mess. Really people, I think I probably need a 12-step program for this issue.

I've been to CrossFit a couple of times...I haven't run since...oh...mid-January (I guess I can't blame the project on that)...the only thing I have been diligent about everyday is making myself do lunges and pushups and reading the Bible. I would think dinner for my family would be more important than at least one of those things....

While I am thoroughly enjoying the openness of my new kitchen...the new tile in our hall bath...and cabinets that don't totally gross me out...I am ready to get my routine back. I need my routine as much as it needs me...and well, Troy would probably like to have a lunch packed again this year....



We are two days into this actual renovation - but four days into eating out and not cleaning the house. I mean, really, why didn't I think of this sooner? I don't have to plan shop...cook...clean up the dishes...dust...vacuum..feel guilty for everything being a wreck...nothing. I've even boycotting cleaning the bath tubs even though they aren't on the reno-level of the house. It's a matter of principle. If I can't clean the ENTIRE house, then I shall clean none of it.

I take that back. I will make the bed in the morning. But that's it. You're not getting anymore work out of me for the next 7 to 10 business days.

It's just wonderful. Brenna and I have been quarantined to the top floor of our house (ie, three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a tiny hall). I was going to say "I've never spent so much time awake in my own bedroom" but then I thought that probably isn't saying a lot of healthy things about my relationship with my husband. So, I digress. I've just been busy doing alot of nothing - and thoroughly enjoying it all!

I've caught up on blogging. Reading blogs. Commenting on blogs. Finding new blogs.

I've surfed the internet for all sorts of crazy things I've been wondering about lately:

  • "how to get an excel document on iphone"
  • "how to sync reminders with outlook"
  • "will aluminum wiring really cause my house to burn down"
  • "how old was your child when they first walked"
  • "yardsale or goodwill - pros and cons of each"
  • "my iphone won't turn on, what now"

Obviously, in addition to reading blogs (and Facebooking...alot of freaking Facebooking), I've also been having problems with my stupid (but the one I love) phone.

And Brenna and I have been playing up a her room...while we eat Annie's Organic Bunnies and milk and read stories about princesses and pirates and dogs with shaggy ears. I hope she realizes that once we can get back downstairs, there will be no more eating in our rooms...

All in all, it's been a blast...this home renovation thing. I'm sort of wishing that it will never end....

On an exercise note (because that's really why you read this, right?) I have decided that I must workout at 5am. There is no other way that I will ever be able to be consistent...and my life revolves around consistency (come back to me in a few days when I'm totally over this whole renovation and am ready to be back in my dust-vacuum-laundry routine). I went back to 5:30am CrossFit. I realized that I missed my morning group. We suffer together and there is something very comforting about that. 144 lunges, 96 crunches and 48 see-saw presses - oh and throw an 800m run in there....yes, there is something comforting about suffering in the early morning group.

Until next time....


Our living room...I think there's a baby in there somewhere!



If I have learned only one thing about being a mother, it's this:Time does not stand still.Whether it's the fact that my little munchkin - who just a few short months ago couldn't even focus her eyes on my face, but can now look me straight in the eyes, give me a smile, and then say "no no no" when I suggest that it's time for a nap - or whether it's dragging my fanny out of bed at 5am so I can get a workout in while everyone else is still asleep...time stands still for no one...not even this obsessive-compulsive-neurotic-list-maker and scheduler-extraordinaire.These days I find myself living and breathing by a very detailed schedule. If you've known me any length of time, you know that I'm pretty organized...pretty on top of my to-do list. But now, in Mommy-land, if I don't get the laundry put in at exactly 6:35am, I know that no clothes will get washed that day. If I don't make Troy's lunch at precisely 7:15am, I know Troy will eat no lunch that day. If Brenna looks at me with those big brown eyes at 10:00am and says "no no no" I know that I won't be getting a whole lot done that morning. Living by my schedule has made my days manageable. And while I sometimes feel like I'm working on an assembly line - laundry, breakfast, change diapers, laundry, clean toilets, change diapers, lunch, etc - I really am very thankful every single day that I get to stay home with our little munchkin.For the most part I feel like I've got our house under control (but please come to the front door if you come by for a visit because the carport looks like a yard sale gone horribly wrong), but the one thing I still struggle with is making time to exercise. It's the one thing I just can't figure out. Before becoming a mom, exercise was a breeze (and if I ever complained about making time for it, I really really really apologize now for that). I could run in the morning, at lunch, or in the evening. It didn't matter. I could just take off and no one would miss me. These days? Not so much. I leave the room for a second and Brenna starts with the crocodile tears. It's awesome - I never pee alone anymore!So, I've been working (for a year now) to figure out the optimal time to exercise and still be a good mom and/or wife. And guess what? There is no optimal time. Every single second of my day is now devoted to something that's a little more important (clean diaper, anyone?)....okay, maybe "every single second" is an exaggeration, but you know what I mean. I can exercise at the butt-crack of dawn or late in the evening and here are my list of excuses for not doing each:1. Early morning runs are scary by yourself.2. Early morning CrossFit makes me sleepy later in the day.3. Late evening runs are scary by yourself.4. Late evening CrossFit doesn't exist (they close at 7pm).That's it. A summary of my most frequent excuses for not exercising.This whole thing is a no-win situation for Troy too. If I exercise at the butt-crack of dawn, I'm exhausted by 7 or 8pm. Troy works such wonky schedules, that he is sometimes just getting home about the time I'm fighting to keep my eyes open. If I exercise in the late evening, it means that he has to come home and tend to Brenna. Now, don't get me wrong, he loves that girl. But, I just don't think it's fair for him to work 12+ hours a day and then have to come home and be on task-patrol. I would rather him have that opportunity to just sit on the floor and play with her, read books to her, or take her outside to swing for a while. It's the least he deserves for being such a good Dad.But, then if I just do[...]

My OPINION on Macon Miracles....


I'm writing about this topic on my blog because, while most of my readers are runners from distant lands, at least two of you who read my blog are local - and well, what I have to say is too long for a Facebook status update. Also, as a disclaimer: I am not a writer so my grammar may be a little sketchy...I tend to ramble and take a while to get to my point....I tried to clean it up so that my English school teacher friends wouldn't cringe when they read, with that out of the way, here goes -My thoughts on the Macon Miracle Plan:I have told everyone that would listen to me that I am "hopelessly optimistic" about this plan. I really want the Bibb County education system to succeed. Really, I do. Yesterday I watched with anticipation as Dr. Dallemand gave his address to the community on the Macon Miracle plan. I was a little confused in the seemed a little unorganized, and as great as the Central High kid who sang "Hero" might have been (the sound coming over the live feed I was viewing it on was awful), I just felt like there should have been more haste to get down to business. People I know had taken off of work to be there. They didn't come for a dog and pony show...they showed up to have their questions answered, to have the plan more clearly defined, and hopefully (there I go with that optimism) walk away with a sense of clarity, calmness, and maybe even a little pride.Sadly, I think Dr. Dallemand missed the mark. He had an opportunity to turn this whole thing right-side up and instead he took chose to talk about his own background, the late Dr. King, the Confucius Institute....and well, did he talk about anything else? I was disappointed, to say the least.Shortly after the Chinese acrobats did their performance (and really? Someone thought that was a good idea?), I posted on Facebook that instead of being "hopelessly optimistic", I was now just "hopeless." I followed that up with some chatter about Macon Plans for Private School and other negativity.I should know better. Facebook is not the place to vent my negativity. (And that's a whole other blog post.)But, it wasn't until I got a message from someone that I respect greatly, did it dawn on me that I really am "throwing the baby out with the bath water" (credit to Chris Horne for that one). The message was regarding the teachers, and their disappointment with this whole fiasco. I thought alot about that last night. That through this whole week-long ordeal, I've not seen a whole lot of talk about the teachers...or for that matter, the students. We've all talked about how ridiculous it is for our kids - who barely speak good English - to be learning Mandarin Chinese. We've all Facebooked about our disgust that the plan would call for losing 300 teachers (through attrition, but still losing them) and closing of 12 schools. We set-up FB pages and Twitter accounts to get Dr. Dallemand ousted from his job. And through all of this I never thought about 1) how the teachers - the majority of them ARE good teachers - how they must be feeling to not only feel like they don't have a say in the matter, but to also feel like they have really failed in the public eye 2) how we actually get to the root of the problem - which in our area is the kids - the one's who have parents who could give a rat's fanny whether the children succeed or fail and 3) what is an alternative to Macon Miracle.I had an opportunity to chat with Troy's cousin and his wife a few weeks ago. They are newly married, and both embarking on their first year[...]



So, I lasted about 10 days.

I rolled off the wagon, down four flights of stairs, and across into an abyss of chocolate covered cookies, hershey kiss pretzel m&m thingys, candied pecans, chocolate cake, ice cream, and.....

That's where this blog post ends...and I go eat the rest of those pretzel m&m thingys in the kitchen.

I just discovered that one cute little 13 month old hit the "turn off wireless" button on my laptop while I was typing this really long and eloquent post. And I lost everything except those first two lines.

So, I'm off the wagon. I'm frustrated. And I'm going to find some chocolate.

In the meantime, who wants to come over and show my toddler that since she's got $12,000 worth of toys in our living room, she does NOT need to play with my computer????



Honey baked ham, chocolate covered pecans, whole wheat bread, blueberry Greek yogurt, granola bars, coleslaw, fudge, white chocolate covered pretzels, Ritz crackers, fried apples, blueberry muffins, tuna salad, Doritos, pretty much anything from Panera bread, cupcakes, salad dressing, gum, and cereal....This is just a small list of the things I've turned down over the last 5 days.Because they contained sugar. Six days ago I told Troy that I was going to give up sugar in the New Year. He didn't have to ask "why?" He knows all too well what my addiction to the sweet stuff is all about. As a matter of fact, he's even coined a term - "my second pocket" - that's the place where all the desserts go when I'm too full to finish a meal, but not too full to have dessert. This is not my first sugar-free stint. I've thrown around the idea a few times at the New Year, Lent, three months before bathing suit season, etc. Give up sugar for a few weeks, and then reintroduce it in moderate idealistic as that sounds, it's not something I'm capable of. I usually make it about four hours after declaring a sugar-fast...and then I convince myself that this is too impossible of a task...too monumental for me to take on at the time...I tell myself "I'll just workout more."But, really, it's not about losing weight for me.I've been on a sugar-binge for the last 20 years or so. Other then gaining 55 pounds while I was pregnant, I've been blessed with the ability to eat whatever I want while my weight only fluctuates a few pounds up or down. So, really, this is not about losing weight.It's about Brenna. And my new life as a role-model for her. I've been really cautious to make sure her sugar intake comes from fruits and other natural sources. She didn't even have any sugar in her first birthday cake (it was sweetened with applesauce). I just don't want her to struggle with sugar like I have.And then I saw this video: I Ate All of Your CandyAnd I got really really scared.I mean, how did these kids get to this level? These parents seem like good people....they seem like parents similar to Troy and I. Could my kid be like this one day? Could she be truly upset, even hysterical...because her candy is gone? It gave me a wake up call.Like I said, I want to live a life of being a role-model for Brenna....I know I won't do everything right (did you hear she ate coffee grounds out of the trash can yesterday?) but I want to do the best job possible. It's MY job (and Troy's, as well) to make sure she has everything she needs, that she learns right from wrong, and that she takes her health seriously. And if it's my job to do those things, shouldn't I start by doing them myself???So, I gave up sugar. Not as a New Year's "resolution" and not in an attempt to have "moderate" sugar intake (would anyone suggest that I become a smoker again, but just in "moderation?"). I'm giving it up because it's bad for me (it's bad for you too) and I don't need it. It's just that plain and simple.Actually, it's plain but not that simple. I am ASTONISHED at the amount of things that have sugar in them. It's in EVERYTHING. And even some things that used to be sugar-free (Jif's Creamy Natural Peanut Butter), now have sugar in them. So, I have to read the label on EVERYTHING. I've had to ask my in-laws about the ingredients in the chili they the the spaghetti. Troy got the ingredients "binder" from the management at Panera so I could figure out what I c[...]



I've not been doing a lot of running lately. That's been pretty evident by my running log (I would be surprised if I hit 250 miles this entire year) and my lack of blogging (I tend to only think of things to blog about when I'm running).

I've analyzed, scrutinized, and just plain pondered about this. And the only thing I can come up with is that I lack the extra time it takes to get myself out there.

For example, yesterday, I began my day at 5:30am doing the WOD (workout of the day) at our local CrossFit. Then I headed home, showered, made breakfast and lunches for my two favorite people, did two loads of laundry, and unloaded the dishwasher - all before B even got up at 9 am (and for the record, no, she doesn't normally sleep that late but she's been battling an ear infection - that we had been blaming on jet lag - for 5 days). Got B off to MMO (mother's morning out), then headed to UHaul to pick up moving boxes (yes, our house is going back on the market), to the ghetto mall to pick up two Christmas gifts, the post office to mail birthday thank you cards (yes, the little rugrat turned ONE last week) and some really late Christmas cards. From there, I picked B back up, took her home, fed her and myself, put her down for a nap and commenced to cleaning out two closets - and a book shelf - and did 3 more loads of laundry. B got up from her nap, we went to the doctor where we found out she has had a raging ear infection (it was a well-visit gone awry...). Off to the pharmacy to pick up B's antibiotics...from there I headed home to get dinner ready. I prepared dinner, fed the rugrat and then gave her a bath. By now, it's 7pm. I cleaned up the kitchen, put said baby (I guess "toddler" is in order these days) down for the night and T and I had dinner ourselves. This was at 8:30.

I had intentions of running an easy 30 minutes because T was supposed to be home earlier than 8:00pm. But, work is important and I will never blame him for going out to kill something and dragging it home...even if it is at 8pm.

This is a normal day for me. I'm pretty certain with everyone's hectic schedules, I'm not alone in this. But, what do other people do? I could have skipped CrossFit at 5:30 but really, I'm actually enjoying it and am excited about the strength I feel from doing it. Besides, I'm not willing to run in the dark by myself - well, not around here, anyway.

I'm starting to wonder if I should just hang up running for a while...find some activities that are a little easier to manage around my schedule. I'm sure things will change, but for now, my windows of exercise opportunity seem to be really early in the morning or really late in the evening. And you know what? I don't love running enough to make myself run on the treadmill every single day. I just don't.

I would be interested to hear your opinion, suggestions, advice, or any words of wisdom you might possess....



This time two years ago, I ran the half-marathon of my life...a nice PR of 1 hour 54 minutes and some change. This time yesterday, I was crossing the finish line of the most memorable half-marathon of my life....not the slowest, but not the fastest...but definitely the one I will never forget.Let me preface this story with another story: when I was six months pregnant I thought it was a great idea to register for a marathon...the Savannah Rock n Roll Marathon to be specific. It was my body come-back plan. Train for a marathon and lose the 55 pounds I gained while I was preggo. Well, shortly after I had Brenna I lost the weight...without running. It just sort of happened. I tried to eat right, do a little Fit-Camp here and there, and on the occasion that I had nothing else to do, I'd run. Quickly, I realized that there was no way I was going to run the volume needed to complete a marathon and not have my legs fall off. So, I decided to "just do the half." That's what I kept saying..."I'm just doing the half...." like it was no big deal...Because, really, I had convinced myself that if I could train and run a 1:54 half-marathon, then surely I could just go out and run a half-marathon when I had no time goal in mind.At some point I convinced myself that I could also run said half-marathon by not training at all. Because, really, I've done it before...I can do it again, right?Well, yes...and no...It's true that I showed up for the race. And it is a fact that I finished. But, everything that happened in between...well, it was a comedy of errors...that seemed to get not-so-funny as the miles ticked by. I ran the race with my brother, Bryan. It was his first half-marathon and I really envisioned myself being his "coach." I'd talk him through the tough times and we'd laugh about silly things on the flat parts of the race. I'd convince him that he could do this and at the end we'd give each high fives and plan our next one. All that business about being his coach....first comedic event. He ACTUALLY trained for the race. As a matter of fact, barring a knee injury, he was prepared to run the entire marathon. His shortest mileage week leading up to the race was about 40 miles. 4-o-m-i-l-e-s. (It should be noted that I didn't even run 40 miles in an entire month this year.) In the end he turned out to be the coach, and rightfully so...he earned that distinction.My second comedy of errors was the fact that I really didn't pack well for this race. I didn't bring gloves...the shorts I packed had never been tested in any run of distance...and the jacket that I donned...well, it's back at mile 2 somewhere...and it was not a "throw-away" running item. Actually, it was the first warm thing I purchased once I lost the baby weight. That jacket and I have seen some trying times, and it will be sorely missed...but that's what I get for not having a race plan. As far as gloves go, Coach Bryan was smart enough to bring two pairs...and those "not tested" running shorts will never be graced in a race again. At some point during mile 12 I really thought I probably had blood running down my legs from the awful havoc that was being wreaked on my inner thighs (yeah, I know...TMI). Back to the race. Our corral finally got to the start line about 8 minutes after the official start of the race. I was excited and nervous and happy but still thinking with my Coach hat on....I was going to muster up the energ[...]


2011-10-09T19:23:50.756-05:00 I didn't mean to take 2 whole months off.

Actually, I meant to throw in the towel altogether on this blogging thing - motherhood is calling for me to give up a few things - until I walked into the church nursery this morning and one of Brenna's caretakers said "hey, so I'm running alot 6 miles yesterday and I was trying to find out what I should be doing...and hey, I stumbled across your blog."

Seriously, every time I consider shutting this thing down...someone tells me they've discovered my blog. Every. Single. Time. It's just weird.

So, what have I been doing for the last 2 months? Well, in no order of importance my life can be summed up like this:

- Cleaning up poopy diapers
- Cleaning up poop on B's clothes
- Cleaning up poop that transferred from B's clothes to mine
- Cleaning up poop off of my favorite $9 watch (only after I retrieved it from the frustrated with the amount of poop I deal with that I figured it was easier to throw the watch away then clean up more POOP)

I know,'s an exciting life I lead.

Running has been...well, as existent as it has been since I found out I was pregnant...which is pretty non-existent. Funny thing is, I'm still signed up for that marathon in 3 weeks. I've decided to back down to the half...and I think I've run a total of 13.1 miles in the last 3 months. Sad, isn't it?

I'm just bored with it. I don't know why. I'm reading a book about such things, and have decided that it's time to try something new.

So, I'm hiring a nanny that will have the sole job of changing poopy diapers (just don't tell Troy, okay?)

No, really, I've decided to give triathlon a whirl. Yeah, yeah...I know I don't know how to swim...or even like it for that matter. But, I'm hoping the whole "I hope I don't drown on an open-water swim" will be just the challenge I need to get my fitness kick started again.

I'm also thinking about doing some sort of body cleanse. No, not in the colonic sort of cleansing way...I've just felt so craptastic the last few weeks and I'm wondering if any of it has to do with my diet. I feel like I need a reset and maybe a 21 day cleanse will do the trick. So, if you have any suggestions on that sort of thing, shoot me an email.

So, there you have it...being a mom (and oh, yes, loving every minute of it!) and pretty much nothing else.

Hmmm...maybe next time I decide to post, I'll have something more interesting to say!