Monday, December 5, 2016

What I've learned from Running this year

This year of running has been much different for me than years past because I was more focused on staying injury free than anything else.

The greatest thing that I learned this year was that it can indeed be done. Yes it's going to take time and DEDICATION, but I can do it. I may not be as injury prone as I thought. Like anything in life, you get out of it what you put in.

I learned that I can indeed PR again. I got a marathon PR this year (which I don''t know if I should actually celebrate or not because it was only my second Marathon and the first was ran injured. I'd be pretty bummed if I didn't PR..haha)

I learned that I actually enjoy running local races! Up until this year all my races have been Race-cations! I've really enjoyed running smaller races. I like the familiar courses and having friends and family there.

I learned that I can win AG awards! 2016 was the first year I actually placed in any race. That is a great feeling. I don't know if I'll be able to do it again next year, but that's okay. I enjoyed snagging two AG medals this year!

I also have to give credit to Wendy from Taking the Long Way home for confirming a thing or two when it comes to running.

I've learned that if you have the right pair of running shoes, there is no need to "break them in". Wendy confirms this.  I bought my favorite Mizunos on Saturday and then wore them to the 4th of July race on Monday with out incident!

I've also learned that there really is no need to stretch before a run! If you don't believe me, read Wendy's post HERE!

And a big Thank you to all of you for your encouraging words and words of wisdom throughout the year. I'm sure both Lacey and I learned a little something from each of you this year.

                                   We will be linking this post up with the gals from TOTR.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Weekly Wrap...December 4

I'm starting this post off much like I imagine most other people are starting theirs off by saying  How is it December already????

In any case, I am pleased to say that I pretty much have all my holiday shopping done (which is totally early or me...yay). I ordered most of my stuff online on Cyber Monday so not everything has arrived yet. The only gifts I need to buy are for the grandparents and those are usually the hardest!

Oh, and regardless of what I wrote in this post last week, I am not a scrooge and I DO actually decorate for Christmas. I ordered a few pieces of Holiday decor last week and this is one piece that arrived this weekend.

After my two races the first weekend in November, I decided to just take the month off and relax. That was actually harder to do than I thought because the weather was still so great last month that I didn't want to miss out on some warm runs since I knew winter was coming soon.  I think I did maybe three runs but I didn't go to the gym at all.

I'm starting December out strong though, I've already started back at the gym and I got the bike out and did two 5 mile rides already. I plan to get in a run this afternoon as well. I don't like running in the winter, so this coming season is all about just doing enough to maintain my fitness and keep from being injured. #SettingTheBarLow

We both have a race coming up this coming weekend. I didn't really forget about it, but I didn't actually realize it was THIS weekend! WOW, talk about how time flies!   What do you have on tap for December?  -M

We will be linking our weekly wrap up with Holly and  Tricia! 

Friday, December 2, 2016

5 Items we would buy

We've been blogging going on 4 years now and I have been writing my column in the newspaper for just as long. One of the perks to writing is that we often get to try out and review products.

There are many products that we may use one time and then throw them in the back of our closet to never be brought out again and then there are those products that we absolutely love and would have spent double the money on if we had to.

I'm gonna share with you 5 products that we were asked to review BUT would absolutely have bought had we known how much we liked them.

1. My Mizunos.  It is no secret that I love my Mizunos. Had I not reviewed these shoes I probably never would have thought about them as an option for a new running show. I first tested the Wave Riders and absolutely loved them. I then got to try out the Enigmas and liked them too! I have since purchased several pairs of each style.  A Huge thanks to Mizuno. They now acquired a new customer for life (or at least as long as I continue to run).

2. This Under Armour Jacket.  I never thought I was a running jacket kind of gal, but I have got my use out of this jacket ten fold. To be honest I probably would have never picked this out at the store (didn't care for the black/grey combo), but the reality is that it is perfect for me. It has a hood, 3 outside pockets, a mesh lining with some "secret" pockets inside, and it is light weight,, yet keeps me warm (how is that possible ?).  I've worn it on rainy runs and on cold snowy runs. And it ends up that I love the color combo because because it matches most of my shorts or capris.

                             Fabletics Pissarro capris
3. My Capris from Fabletics.  Every time I wear these capris I get compliments. I love the pattern, and they are good quality (pretty thick material). They just make me happy when I put them on and they match a variety of tanks I already have. I don't know how much these capris retail for but I would totally "buy" them again.

4. I must ave a thing for capris because another great item I would buy if I had to were these capris from PrAna.  These are not as thick as the Fabletics ones but they are the softest capris I've ever owned and for that reason they are a favorite!

And one of Lacey's Favorites......


5. One of my favorite things I've acquired through blogging is my Boston Marathon mug.  A great company called Gone For a Run made it for me using a copy of the bib from race day. I drink my coffee out of it almost every day and just can't help but smile. Had I known how much joy this little mug would bring me I would have had no problems spending $ on it!

Join us next week when we share 5 items we reviewed that deserve a big thumbs down.

Your turn.....

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

My holiday history and the hassle

When I was a little girl I always looked forward to going to my grandparent's house to help decorate the Christmas tree. My grandma was one who decorated every thing in the house. She had holiday dish towels, those little cling things that you put on the refrigerator, oven, and dishwasher, and she even had holiday shower curtains and commode covers in the bathroom. She went all out!

As the years went by, the big Christmas trees got smaller and smaller until one year it was only a fiber optic table top tree. Of course I was disappointed. I remember offering to put the "big" tree up but it just seemed to be too much for them.

So where am I going with this story...........

Lets fast forward a bit to my married life. When we first got married we got real pine Christmas trees. A few years later (we now had two dogs), the real tree seemed to be too much of a hassle (plus pine needles are not good for dog paws), so we bought a huge artificial pre-lit tree at Lowes.

We used this tree for several years. In the coming years I would always be too anxious to put the tree up and would want to do it when I wanted to do it.  I didn't want to have to wait for anyone to help me get it down from the attic and set it up. It became such a hassle.

 SO..... Instead of putting up one large tree, I decided to put up two smaller trees ( in two different rooms of the house of course).  These are easily manageable for me. I store them in the basement and I can put them up and take then down whenever I want. The best part is that they don't take up as much room as the large tree.  I've been using these two trees for several years now and this year I finally wonder if I really need two?

I also have 2 large totes full of Christmas decor I put out every year and 2 Disney Villages. This year, I only put a few snowman item out (because they were my grandmothers).

I am slowly realizing that even though I like Christmas, I don't like to disrupt my home for 30 days.  I've realized that the more I get out to decorate, the more I have to clean up at the end of the season, and who has time for   I now understand how my grandparents may have felt about all the decorations over the years or maybe I'm just in a decorating slump!

Oh, and about my grandparents. My grandma passed away a few years ago.  Later that year during the Christmas season I surprised my Pappy and bought him a 6 foot artificial Christmas tree. I called my dad up and we decorated it before my Pap came home ( I don't remember where he was).  I didn't know if he would appreciate the gesture or not, but it turns out it was a big hit.  I notice that the same tree goes up every year and each year it has more and more ornaments on it!

Tell me a Christmas tree ( or decoration) story of your own. -M

Monday, November 28, 2016

Running with the Comfort Wagon

This week (On Tuesday) is my best girl's birthday.  I don't know if you mommas of children feel the same way but I know I always get a little bit sadder when my sweet girl turns another year older.
This Picture was from 2011. Wow, I can't believe it was 5 years ago!

This year is especially hard because we have dealt with a variety of health issues.  Most recently you may have remembered me saying that Baylee had Bronchitis. Well, that may have been a misdiagnosis to a more serious problem that ended up being a heart problem. This heart problem she will have for the rest of her life and now we just need to keep her on meds.  Okay, enough about the sad news.  The good news is that she is still here with us and we are going to enjoy her.

Since we want to keep her heart rate down Baylee doesn't run (or even walk) with us anymore.  However, we wanted to continue to spend time with her, so I decided to buy her a little present.

It actually arrived a few weeks ago and Scott sent me this picture while I was at work.  I couldn't wait to come home so we could put it together and try it out.

It's called the PetEgo Comfort Wagon trailer that hooks on to your bike.  I looked up reviews and watched videos and I thought this was the best choice. I ordered it from Amazon. I know, just call me the crazy dog lady. Some people may laugh that I will go through all this effort to take my dog on the trail with me, but she's my baby!

The wagon is actually easy to assemble. The wheels pop off and the frame collapses (but is very sturdy when put together).  The wagon comes with one attachment to attach to the bike, so we have it attached to Scott's bike for right now. We will buy an additional attachment for my bike so we don't have to keep taking it off every time we want to switch bikes.

There is also a handle attachment you can purchase that turns the wagon into a stroller but I think that might be taking it a bit too far!

Last year during marathon training, Scott would ride his bike next to me while I ran. Now the plan is for him to pull Baylee in the trailer while I run beside her.  We are jut trying to get her use to it (and not be too excited or panic) while she is in it, so we haven't actually took it for a real run on the trail yet.  We've only taken it to the church parking lot to ride her around.

My hope is that she will really enjoy this and that way we can spend more time with her while we are out on the trail.    -M

I love reading your comments but I must warn you that I am super sensitive when it comes to the health of my pets so please refrain from commenting on any health issues (AKA: No sad pet stories). Thank you.

Since this week's topic is "free" we are linking this post up with the gals from TOTR.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Weekly Wrap...At home with Google

I am SO thankful for the few days that I have off, as I am sure we all are.

After the holiday, this is how I spent my weekend.

The Run Chat Scavenger hunt has started and a trail marker is one of the pictures we had to get.

Friday I did a short run on the rail trail with my sister. This run proved that I need to be getting back to the gym next month. I wasn't achy, just very tired.

I normally use Black Friday to stay home and decorate but later in the afternoon my husband decided he wanted to go shopping for more Christmas decorations. I resisted hard but eventually gave in because there is only so much whining you can take from a grown man,

We did not come home with any Christmas decoration (which I admit I am to blame for) but we did come home with a purchase from Best Buy (of course).

We have it sitting on an end table and it looks like it could be an air freshener. The lights only come on when she is "thinking"

We got this Google Home thing. It's kind of like the Amazon Echo where you can ask it questions and such. IT IS SO ANNOYING.  My husband sat around all day asking it stupid questions that no one would care to know, or he'd ask it simple questions like "what time is it" or "What is the temperature", things that I could quickly tell you just by looking at my phone.

However, I was trying to find some redeeming qualities about this gadget and I did like the fact that I can tell it to play an entire album from a certain artist. This was nice because I had lost one of my favorite CDs ( I know, who listens to CDs anymore) and now I can listen to it anytime I want.  Also, we had fun playing trivia games with it (like 80's TV theme show music and regular Trivia). If you don't know the name of a song, you just have to say a few lines of the song (or tell what the song is about) and the device will find the song for you (and she's been pretty accurate). I call it a she because it's a women's voice.

Saturday, I got a bit more holiday decorations out, wrapped some gifts, and then watched the Brittany Murphy story on LMN.  I've seen this story several times but every time it is on it just sucks me in (that and the Anna Nicole Smith story). So needless to say I just sat around the rest of the evening. I was at least trying to be productive and tried to make a photo book (of my dog) on Shutterfly.  Why does Shutterfly have to be so complicated????  I've made plenty of Shutterfly books in years past and I don't remember it being this difficult.

Today we are going to attempt to decorate the outside of the house. My husband likes to go all out but I like to keep things simple because I remember that we will have to take it all down in January. And although it's 50 degrees now, it will be much colder when we have to take it all down.  -M

Thanks to Holly and Tricia for hosting the Weekly Wrap!

Friday, November 25, 2016

Friday 5: The last week in November

We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends. This edition of the Friday 5 is a mix of things from this last week in November.
Image result for clipart turkeytrot
1.  Earlier this week my sister and I and a friend were considering running a Turkey Trot on Thursday but then at the last minute we all decided that we were going to pass.  My reason for passing was because I just wanted to sleep in. I didn't end up sleeping in but still glad we didn't run because it did end up raining for a bit that morning.  Maybe one year I'll actually do a Turkey Trot.

2. Our other friend actually did get up to do a a Turkey Trot and he won first in his AG and won this trophy! Isn't that cool?  Who else ran on Thursday?

3. I actually had an awesome run this past weekend. The weather was gorgeous, as was the run. I was actually in shorts and a t-shirt and felt I was over dressed! The leaves were falling off the trees as I was running beneath them and I loved hearing the crunching sound under my feet. There was even actually a smell of fall in the air.  I hadn't ran since my race, which was the first weekend in November, so I had been missing out on all this "fall" running!  Do you know what I mean what I say it smells like fall?

4.  Have you decorate your tree yet?  Lacey got this cool Runner Ornament from a company called Personal Creations and I know it will be the first ornament she puts on. If you are looking for some great gift ideas for ANYONE I would highly suggested checking out Personal Creations because they have more than just ornaments. They have blankets, holiday and home decor, and just about anything else. I just got on the site last night and I see they are having a HUGE black Friday sale. Seriously check them out. 

5. Have you started purchasing gifts yet?  I actually received this Runner Crate last week and after checking it out I do believe it would make a fun gift for a runner friend. I think it would make a great exchange gift if you are doing a gift exchange with someone from your running group. The crate I received was jam packed with running goodies including a thermal mug, a variety of organic snacks, a cold pack, blister shields, and much more. 

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