Monday, January 30, 2012

A Surprising Five-Point-Three

Run: 5.3 miles
Location: Astoria Riverwalk West End + 16th Street
Time: 8:45 am
Temperature: 42 degrees
Weather: Cloudy and Mild, but then the sun came out!


Today was the best run in a while. I am finally not super sore from last week's "bootcamp of cross-training" that I put myself through. What can I say that was different about this run(and made it so spectacular)? Well the weather was much better this morning. No wind, no ice, just mild temps. And on my way back the sun came out...oh how I miss the sun when it is cloudy for days on end!

I reorganized my playlist so I have some calmer, yet inspirational music to warm-up to then right as it is time to get started, my pump-it-up music starts. Then as I hit the tail-end of my workout I have some great push-through-it music that really kept me going today. Definitely makes a difference. I used to scroll through my music searching for the right song mid-run. that doesn't really work with an iPhone way up on my upper arm.

I attacked 16th street hill pretty well which really tested my lung capacity. I felt borderline asthmatic at the very top, but just for a few seconds. Swimming helps with this by the way, maybe I can work it in every now and then?

Last-but certainly not least- I ran my longest run so far today! It was another silly mistake on my part, underestimating the mileage again. Instead of 4.5 and change, my run was 5.3 miles! Woop!!

And a quick's time for new running shoes. I don't know how old mine are or how much mileage they have taken but I can tell that I have worn down the inner soles and I have noticed that the mesh upper flexes way too much like it's stretched out. Time for new shoes!

Friday, January 27, 2012

That's How I Roll!!

I have had a few people ask me what I mean when I say I "roll out my muscles" and since I have had really positive results with this I thought I would share. My brother is a personal trainer in Texas and he showed me how to do it but I found these two videos which I think are an excellent help and I like to refer back to them from time to time myself. Happy rolling!


Cross Training Overload and a Cold, Cold Run

This week I finally got some cross training in. Tuesday and Thursday I hit the gym, did a little cardio warm up then hit the weights. Thursday was the day I had designated to try this new yoga class at the local rec center so I finished up my strength workout and walked over for it. The yoga class was insane! It was vinyasa so always moving and while there was a lot of great stretching, it was all combined with dynamic strength moves that kicked my butt! Funny me, I had gotten up this morning figuring I would to some strength training then hit a "relaxing yoga session". Oh how naive I can be sometimes ;) I was so ravenous by the end that I almost made a bee-line for McDonald's for a cheeseburger value meal. I was a good girl though and I ate my lunch instead. But lesson learned! Last night my butt was so sore (partly from my hill workout the day before) that I was icing and rolling through the agony of overdoing it.

Today's run:

Run: 4 miles
Location: Astoria Riverwalk West End
Time: 8:15 am
Temperature: 31 degrees and freezing!!
Weather: Foggy and windy

I woke up still so sore today so I spent a little more time warming up, stretching, and just getting the range of motion going in my legs. I switched out my running ball-cap for my headband with ear covers and I remembered my black gloves. I also gave myself a break and parked at my run route instead of forcing myself to run back up the huge hill to where my car is usually parked at school.

The run started out pretty good, wind at my back, just plugging along feeling strong. But once I hit the out-and-back point and had to face the wind I just about froze. I felt like I was hitting a huge ice-block-wall! I walked some to give myself a break since I have been so sore, but overall I just wanted it to be over so I kept running (which gets it over faster). I did not enjoy running back. As soon as I climbed into my car, I cranked the heat and guzzled down a chocolate protein shake that I had made that morning for myself. What a treat! My face unthawed, eyes unglazed and I headed back to school to get ready for class (shower, get dressed, dry my hair, etc.)

A bummer realization hit me though once I'd stepped out of the shower (which was glorious by the way, nothing like a hot shower on a day like today!). I had forgotten every undergarment possible. No bra, no undies, no socks. What the heck?!? There have been days where I'd forget one and I usually have back-ups in my locker (note taken) But how had I managed to forget all three?!? I laughed it off and dressed as so not to make it obvious that I was all commando underneath. Today was one of those days I was actually thankful I have no boobs. LOL I don't think anyone noticed.

Tomorrow is a rest day. I will do my long run on Sunday instead. My poor body is so sore I need a day to recover!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

If you are a runner. Period.

The other day I heard a disheartening story from a runner friend of mine. She had just accomplished an amazing feat and finished her first marathon! She had run with her brother and they had just sat down to lunch after the race, basking in the afterglow of their accomplishment. Her brother ran into a guy who saw his medal hanging around his neck and the guy struck up a conversation with him. It went like this:

Guy: “Was this your first marathon?”
Brother: “Yes.”
Guy: “How long did it take you?”
Brother: “A little over 6 hours.” (his time was 6:10 or something)
Guy: “Wow…that’s a long walk.” Chuckle chuckle.
Brother: “…well, have a great day.” *Walks away*

When I read about that I was so mad I could spit nails! What a nerve! And not just the arrogance but the fact that the guy said that right after they had finished their marathon! He totally rained on their parade!! It got me to thinking about any negative experiences I may have had as a runner. I haven't experienced anything quite so demeaning as my friend's brother did but I do remember distinctly having a friend of mine tell me that my 3-miler "didn't count" because I had walked a little to recover on the hilly parts. It was so belittling! What gives people the right to judge others' running ability or accomplishments? I'll tell you...


Every achievement we cover as runners in reality is a personal feat, one that no one can take away from us. But there might be times when you have to shake off irritating folks who seem to have no other lot in life but to tear others down. It's sad, but it's true. And we all know that it actually comes from their own insecurities. So don't listen!

Whatever you do as a runner, don't let anyone tell you that you aren't amazing! (Even if they can run a 2:30 marathon, it does not give them the right!) Just the fact that you get up every day, lace up your running shoes and pound pavement is a huge accomplishment! Running is hard; no matter how fast, how far, or if you take walk breaks. So that means that you win! The only ones who lose are the jerks who cut you down. Here's a cool quote:

And I'd like to add, "There is no one that you need to impress, and you don't need 'running approval' from anyone."

Just run.

Run for YOU.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Running Playlist

My running playlist (in-progress)...really keeps me going!!

(alphabetical by artist)

Abby Merkel, Chin Up
BarlowGirl,  Beautiful Ending
BarlowGirl, Open Heavens
BarlowGirl, Come Alive
Bill Conti, Gonna Fly Now (Rocky Theme)
Black Eyed Peas, I Gotta Feeling (Aaron's favorite song)
Blue Oyster Cult, Don't Fear the Reaper
Brooke Fraser, Something in the Water
Cee-Lo and Jack Black, Kung Fu Fighting
Cold Play, Viva La Vida
Christian Aguilera, Fighter
Hot Chella Rae, Tonight, Tonight
Kasbian, Club Foot
Kelly Clarkson, My Life Would Suck Without You
Nickleback, If Today Was Your Last Day
Pit Bull, Give Me Everything (Featuring Ne-Yo, Afrojack and Nayer)
Queen, Another One Bites the Dust
Rihanna, We Found Love
Santana, Smooth (Featuring Rob Thomas)
Shakira, Hips Don't Lie (Featuring Wyclef Jean)
Skillet, Awake and Alive
Van McCoy, The Hustle

4 Rocking Miles-Rolling Hills Route

Run: 4 miles
Location: Irving St Route with Rolling Hills
Time: 8:15 am
Temperature: 44 degrees
Weather: Lots of Fog

Notes: Great run! Today was the first day that I timed myself. I made the 4-mile trek in 37 minutes, an average of 9:15 minutes per mile. Not bad, especially considering some of the killer hills! (By the way, I added a link to the pace calculator that I use on the links box on the right-hand side.) This run felt so great! I have an iPhone now and added some new songs as well as old favorites and I rocked out! It was so fun!! I know that having and iPod helps me. I can't hear grunts, gasps and deep breaths and I just go for it! I totally destroyed the hills! Nothing better than working hard on a run. And lucky me, I escaped the rain, which held out until my last 5 minutes which was cool.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Five Miles Monday

Run: 5 miles
Location: Astoria Riverwalk West End, then 17th Street Hill
Time: 8:15 am
Temperature: 35 degrees
Weather: Lots of Fog


Well, it's still really cold (naturally...I mean it is January!). Last night I got on to see if I'd be trudging along in the rain today and gladly I saw that the forecast did not call for rain! Woop! As I drove over to Astoria I had a lovely, clear view of the sunrise, which really lifted my spirits. Then I crossed the bridge into a superthick fogbank and the sun was swallowed up. What a downer! Oh well, I went into my run with a "don't think, just run" mentality and thanked God it wasn't raining. The hills were icy so I decided to just walk down the hill instead of drive (and lose my great parking space by the gymnasium). I did 4.5 miles of flat then made the added .5-mile trek up the hill. I will admit, I had to walk the last block. Those Astoria hills are not kidding!

The run went well. I challenged myself and started at a faster pace to see how long I could hold it and turns out I held it to the end! I really need to start timing myself. Thanks to my new iPhone I will be able to do that from here on out! I will also have an iPod to listen to which I'm really looking forward to!

Next post I will share my playlist(which I will probably update periodically)...

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Why I Love Running :)

I really do love running. Some people say that they hate running or they make themselves run to stay in shape...but I honestly love running. I thought I'd mention why :)

~I love that running is just for me. There are days when I have to push my jogging stroller on the weekends because my youngest son just can't hack miles and miles with his training wheels :) But for the most part these days running is just mine. There aren't many things that I do that aren't to benefit multiple individuals (even school is part of our family's bigger financial goals). Running is just mine.

~Running makes me feel strong. I don't have to be super-coordinated, talented or even pretty while doing it. I just lace up my shoes and tackle the road I am running that day. It makes me feel young and alive.

~Running is a huge stress-reliever. Even today as I am sitting down writing up this blog, I am interrupted so many times. Life is stressful. Life with 3 young boys adds to it. Having my husband gone for weeks straight is a straight-up joke when we are talking about me keeping my sanity! When I run, often at the start I have all of these burdens on my shoulders, and as I run, I picture the burdens falling off. It's like I'm giving every stressful thing in my life a piggy back ride and one by one they fall off as I leave them in my tracks. For a while I get to clear my head, or let my thoughts wander. I appreciate nature and get a ton of good, fresh air. I finish up feeling ready to tackle the stresses of the day again.

~Endorphins. 'Nough said.

~Running is a huge confidence booster. When I am running, I feel like I am doing something extremely challenging. I am out there working hard when other people refuse to. As I train, I get faster, and every improvement boosts confidence. Every run reminds me that I am capable of pretty awesome things.

~Running is kind of like a special club. There is this unspoken respect for one another as runners, especially since non-runners don't really "get it". I have noticed that when I am out running, especially in the cold, wet weather we've been having, when you pass another runner, there is often this head-bob that says, "Yes, we are runners. We rock."

~Running is so fun! There is a lot that goes into this "hobby". From designing a kick-butt playlist on your iPod, to traveling to race destinations. Collecting medals, race bibs and t-shirts, visiting the Expos. It's one of few sports that literally anyone can participate in.

~Oh and last but certainly not least...I love food. Running keeps things toned and keeps me from gaining a ton of weight! :)

A Saturday Slog

"slog": a runner's term for slow jog.

Run: 3 miles
Location: The Prom, Seaside, OR
Time: 9:00 am
Temperature: 43 degrees
Weather: cloudy and wiiiiiinnnnnndddddyyyyy!!!


Today was designated by me as a 6-mile long run day. Judging by my mileage, it was an epic failure. But I don't say that word because as far as I'm concerned, a run is still a run and a step in the right direction! I have all of my boys home from school being a Saturday and Ben is not home from training until Monday. Thankfully it wasn't raining  this morning so I figured I could have my oldest take the younger ones to the park while I ran, and I could check in with them. My plan was out-and-back on the Prom, times two. Six miles.

Everything felt good. Since I had planned on running longer than 4 miles, I wore my Ace ankle support (left ankle), which was just ok. I didn't really like it. It seemed to keep my muscles too tight, and it just felt weird. On a similar note, my shins were feeling yesterday's hill workout. So the verdict is out on the ankle brace.

Running today felt good. I ran at a slower "long run" pace and I really enjoyed myself. It seems Jeff Galloway's advice pops into my head often, always tips about taking it slower, being good to your body and building strength and endurance gradually. He gives permission to go a little slower and take walk breaks a lot. (I did not walk, but it is empowering to reserve the right to do so if needed.)

I was disappointed when I went to check in on the boys and one of them was on the verge of meltdown, initiated by someone driving him nuts, not playing fair or something like that. What was supposed to be just part of my run ended up being me coming to a complete hault for 20 minutes trying to usher everyone home. So I threw in the towel. Oh well, it's all good. I still had my longest mileage week this year at 14 miles. Not bad! I am really proud of myself for sticking to "shorter mileage, an average of 3 miles per run" for this long. I know I'm doing my body a huge favor in doing so!

So my friends I close out Week 3 of this year's journey! It feels good to have been so consistent already. I guess it helps that I really do love running.

Stats thus far:

Total Mileage: 38 miles, (3.8% down!)
Longest Run: 4 miles
Favorite Run: The hilly route I ran yesterday on Irving St.

**3 weeks until the 5K in Longview. As far as 5K race shape, I'm feeling really good! I want to get two longer runs (6 mile and 7 mile) in before the run and one longer tempo run in as well (20 minutes).

Friday, January 20, 2012

Soggy, Hilly 4 Miles

Run: 4 miles
Location: Irving St, Astoria, OR
Time: 8:00 am
Temperature: 43 degrees
Weather: foggy and drizzling


This particular route was quite hilly. I started out at the college, did some warm-ups at the gym then headed out! The temperature was fine, I wore a hat so the moisture didn't bother me. I headed west on Irving first, and quickly discovered that the "hilly" route we definitely that! The hills felt great, I really haven't done many until now. The only thing I worry about is that my somewhat soggy shoes will still be wet tomorrow when I head out to tackle my long run.

Random tibit...I'm getting really sick of dealing with my super-long horse-tail mane of mine. I love my hair, but I have been thinking of finally trying out a shorter haircut which would really help take a load off. Today I ended up with a horrible rats-nest by the end of my run thanks to the wetness/pony-tail swishing.

It was a beautiful route and I will definitely do it again!

**Quick knee feels fine! I have no idea what it was...probably what I thought, just tight tendons...

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Is Something Tweaked? (Time to Cross-Train)

For some reason last night I started noticing my left knee felt a bit tweaked, kind of as if it had been a little hyperextended. I didn't have anything obvious happen to cause it and I have been stretching and everything quite diligently. The last thing I want is an injury so I have been really listening closely to my body(which has been feeling great). I have some strength training and I want to add yoga soon. The great thing about today is that everything I aim to do is isolation exercise, so I can really cue into every muscle and see how everything feels. I have a feeling my knee is just feeling pulled probably by my IT band. It's definitely time I added some yoga and cross training to my running schedule.

That being said, I tallied up my mileage thus far and I'm at 30 miles. It's a nice round number :)

And...I noticed I have lost 2 lbs these last 3 weeks! Good things.

Today's workout consisted of a 1-mile treadmill run and a bunch of weight maxes. Nothing exciting. But it's good to be doing some cross-training now.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

3-Mile Progressive Acceleration Run

Run: 3 miles
Location: Treadmill
Time: 3:45 pm
Temperature: around 60 degrees
Weather: N/A


Today I didn't really feel like running. It has been a bit of a taxing weekend...mostly for good reasons: Birthday, Snow, Company. But I was tired. When I learned that school was canceled for me and delayed for Aaron, I just went home and rested. Later in the afternoon I got a second wind and took Aaron and Birthday Boy, Caleb to the pool to swim while I had a date with the treadmill there that kicked my butt last time.

It went better this time. I ran 3 miles in 33.14, starting with a fast walk then increasing my pace throughout the run. I think I ended on a 10:30 minute mile pace and averaged 11:04 minute mile pace. A very good place to be right now.

I can't wait to get my new iPhone that is on order. It will be a real help to have something motivating to listen to while on the hamster wheel.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Unforgettable Snowy Run

Run: 3 miles
Location: Prom
Time: 8:30 am
Temperature: 30 degrees, but feels like 25
Weather: Clear with snow on the ground, light wind


What can I say? One of the best runs I have ever had. Part of the very reason I love running! Seaside was blessed with a beautiful blanket of snow last night, and I woke up this morning to a magical winter wonderland! I could think of no better way to experience it than to go for a lovely run. It was so quiet. I love the soft cushion that snow is to run on. Granted, it was 8:30 so there were quite a few foot and bike tracks outside so unfortunately those were becoming patches and globs of ice so the terrain was a little uneven and by the end my ankles and ATs were feeling it. More of a workout for them than injury-related.

I remember years ago Ben and I were vistiting friends in Schenectady, NY, it was 1° outside and I saw a group of 3 guys running. I remember thinking they must be nuts!! Just standing outside in the chill hurt my lungs and made it hard to breathe. Granted 25° is not 1°, but today I felt like I joined the ranks of die-hard runners who run even in tough conditions. Hopefully I will get one more run in before it all melts!

The landscape and sunrise this morning

Sunday, January 15, 2012

2 Days of Rest

Not a big post here, just keeping up to date. I rested yesterday, and I'll be resting today I'm thinking. I had planned for a run this evening, but my mom is coming into town for a visit and I'm going to spend time with her. I have my run in the morning to look forward to!

Saturday, January 14, 2012


Just a fun wish list of running stuff I would like to have, but probably won't necessarily buy ;)

A running watch: I lost mine recently!

Anything (and everything) from Lulumon. I just love this store! Their clothes are feminine, simple, and comfortable! I love these two jackets in particular:

Disneyland Half Marathon: I'm really hoping we can get down there late summer as part of our road trip we are planning. I want this bling!!

Nike Lunar Glides...I'm loving these colorful shoes! In fact, I just bought a pair for my son who needed new sneakers. The thing is that I try to stick with the tried-and-true shoe that I always have, Nike Zoom Structure Triax, a shoe that was chosen for me for my pronating foot. The Structure Triax never comes out with flashy colors and I love all of the flashy-colored running shoes. The Zoom Vomero would also be a good shoe that I watch for nice colors in, but I have noticed it tends to be even more expensive than the Triax. 

Zoom Vomero:
Nike iPhone running case. More of a "need", meaning I won't be running with my iPhone if I don't have a really, really good case. I tend to break things. :-/ first wish would be to find some that don't look weird over my butt. Yes,  I am aware of the fact that I have a ghetto booty. I have no problem with it. I just like it when workout bottoms don't make it look even bigger/distorted. (No unibutt please!)

That being said...maybe these?? They are all black(but love the pink inner waistband), so slimming...and on sale...

Friday, January 13, 2012

So maybe I'm a little competitive...

Run: 1.5 miles
Location: CCC gym
Time: 1 pm
Temperature: somewhere around 65 degrees

Notes: Today I had to do a timed run, basically a Tempo run for a PE class. It is a pre-test used to gauge your improvement over the term. We run again at the end and compare. I was kind of nervous because I had to run with people I didn't really know but I held nothing back. Apparently I am competitive because I got to the front and refused to let anyone pass me. I don't know what it is! But there was this taller girl behind me that I could hear running and there was just no way I was going to let her pass me! I ran hard the whole time. I was proud of myself. I think what it is, is that I don't really know how to "race" halfway. It is either all the way or no-go.

I ran 1.5 miles in the 12 minutes allotted which put me at 8:00 minute per mile! I am so happy that I can still run hard and fast! I've just gotten started for the year so I'm thankful to have something to go by and I hope to only keep improving!

(I also got there early and did 30 minutes on the elliptical beforehand so I bet that helped warm me up)

{I also decided I am not going to report on stretching and rolling. It has become something I do every day so let's just assume I do it every day for simplicity's sake!}

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Easy Run Day-No Guilt!

Run: 1.5 miles
Location: Treadmill at CCC
Time: 8 am
Temperature: somewhere around 65 degrees

Notes: I went into my run aimed at doing 3 miles but I just wasn't feeling it today. I am not on a training program per say, just out here to get some runs under my belt before my first target run adn build up a good base. I will start a half marathon training plan in a month or so. At first I wanted to feel guilty for "giving up" at the 1.5 mile mark but then I let myself off the hook. It was still a run, and I was still "lapping everyone on the couch." And after all I have been doing, I needed an "easy" run.

I think I may have gone farther had I had an iPod. Mine broke a while ago and I'm holding off because I know in roughly a month or so, I should be getting an iPhone. The treadmill is so monotonous and at the gym there's no tv's not much of a radio(its on the other side of the room and you can't really hear it with the noise of the treadmill).

Wait! Let me stop right there...funny, here I am again sort of trying to justify my "easy run" with excuses and figure out why it wasn't longer! I don't mean to do that, I think it is a natural tendency of mine.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


Woohoo! I ran my longest run so far! It was kind of accidental, because I mapped my run online then when I got to the out-and-back point, the sign I was looking for was missing. So I went just a bit further!

Run: 4 miles
Location: Astoria Riverwalk (west end)
Time: 8 am
Temperature: 32 degrees (with wind chill factor)

Notes: Tailwind in the out portion, heavy headwind in the back portion. Felt really good!! I felt like I was working hard but nothing hurt, ached or burned. Everything felt good. I wore my Nike running headband as I have been and today could have been a full on stocking cap day but I made it ok. I also wore some black kid-sized gloves that I found in a basket in the entryway. Those were a MUST! I am pretty sure my cheeks got pretty wind burnt. I had to watch out for a few places of icing on the wood planks of the bridges.

But overall, what a gorgeous run! This morning the sunrise was explosive pinks! The water was lapping on the beach, the riverwalk was quiet. And although it was super windy, I kept telling myself, "At least it's not raining! Woohoo!!" :)

Also, I found a place where the Riverwalk trail continues on, and I didn't follow it today but it looks like it goes all along the bay and past the boat docks. I am going to maybe take a walk out there first and get a feel for how far it is, because it is not featured in

By the way, greatest invention for a runner without a GPS watch- Check it out!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Marathon Thoughts

January 10

Run: 3 miles
Location: Astoria Riverwalk
Time: 11 am
Temperature: 40 degrees
(Stretched and rolled before bed)

How was it? Great run! I am feeling better every run. The first 1 1/2 miles are tough but it's like I find a groove and things feel better. My mantra has been, "Good Form, Smooth Strides."...and "Make it look easy"

I was hungrier today. I have been paying a lot of attention to being organized and prepared for meals, instead of 'winging it'. That makes a big difference. I am not tracking it super closely, just being more conscious of my body's needs.

I love how running puts me into an overall healthier mindset!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Rest Day and First Schedule Conflicts

Rest Day: Ok that was today. Not much to say except I really wanted to go run! Man the itch has come back in full force! But nonetheless, I was a responsible adult and I rested, stretched and rolled out my muscles. I get to run tomorrow :-D

Schedule Conflicts: One of my goals for this year is to not let schedule conflicts keep me from runs I know I need to complete. It falls under the "making running a priority" goal.

1) I am a morning runner by far...and I can be as specific to say that I like to run between 8-9am ideally. I like to get it done, sweat it out, shower everything off and get on with my day. My body seems most fresh and raring to go first thing in the morning too. Honestly, in days past if the morning drew past 10am and I had not gone for a run yet, I would just call it a wash and get on with my day...a big part of my problem. So winter term just started and Tuesdays I have Anatomy and Physiology Lab from 8-11. Frig. Right before lunch, right during my "sweet spot" running time of the day! So I thought, no problem, I will just eat a little bit bigger breakfast with some protein so I'm not starving by run time, wear my running garb to class then after class head out. I can be flexible, I can!! (I will have to bring a gym bag full of all of my getting-ready-for-the day clothes, toiletries, and shower stuff...but I will work it out!)

2)Then I realized I scheduled a coffee date with a friend right after class! Why on earth did I do that?? I had it all set up and I hate canceling but in the interest of staying consistant, I rescheduled it. It's so weird but that was the hardest thing. I hate being a flake. But it became easier when I faced the fact that this tiny fear-disappointing others-is a huge part of the problem of why I fell out of my running routine. I let the fear motivate me to push my own health down the priority ladder.  That realization was all the push I needed, because I know I desperately need to change it.

Baby Steps...

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Three Beautiful Miles at Sunset

Sunset on the beach, one of my favorite things. I enjoy it even more in the afterglow of a run. The sun was shining so brightly today you just couldn't not get out and enjoy it. It felt like spring. I really wanted to run but felt like maybe I should rest. Then I checked the weather report which calls for rain tomorrow (70%), but mild weather rest of the week. So tomorrow makes a better rest day ;) I'll get my locker all set up at school and fill out the paperwork necessary to use the gym. That way I'll have it ready to go and I won't miss a workout because of a technicality ( like not being able to open the gym or when I don't feel like toughing out the rain).

Rambling aside, I had a great run! I pushed Aaron in the stroller. There were quite a few people on the Prom and my kids were in a great mood. I paid close attention to my shins which took the 3 miles really well. That is a relief! (Stretched and rolled before bed)

After the run, the kids and I went and played at the beach. We even took Abby, our little dog.

What a great first week of the year. I ran a total of 14 miles, over 5 days. I am totally happy with that.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

3 Miles and Shins on Fire!

Today I strapped Aaron into the Chariot and brought Sammy along riding his bike as we made the 3 mile out-and-back strip of the Prom. Somewhere about 1+mile, my shins caught on fire! I thought it was probably that they were just warming up so I slowed down a bit and lightened my footfalls the best I knew how. By the time I got to 1 1/2 miles I stopped to stretch them and they were poppin' out big time! I know this well, I've had shin splints a lot. I don't have them yet, but they are tender so I am going to have to pay attention. I walk/jogged the rest to finish the 3 miles. Ice and stretch will be the prescription for my shins today.

I just wanted to mention though that while my shins hated my guts today, the rest of my body felt great! Lungs and legs overall felt ready to conquer the world.

I rolled my legs out before bed.


So after last night, and the gut rot I experienced after a terrible eating day, I thought I would take the time to keep a little bit of a log of what I'm fueling my body with. Simple as that.


                1 1/2 cups coffee, FF milk and sugar added
                1/2 cup whole oats, berries, touch of cinamon and ~2 Tbsp FF milk
                1/2 cup coffee
                16 oz water
                1 apple
                2 cups oriental snack mix
                minestrone soup
                1 cup milk
                16 oz water
                1 cup of coffee, milk, sugar
                apple slices
                few handfuls of home-popped popcorn
                 2 cups salad(romaine, carrots, grape tomatoes)
                 2 Tbsp light homemade ranch
                16 oz water
                a couple oz. pulled pork light
                on two slices whole wheat toast spread with ketchup
                1 cup peas
                20 Hershey's Kisses (had quite the craving and very little self-control!)
                16 oz water
                2 glasses of white wine (while watching The Notebook I might add)
                more oriental snack mix.
                16 oz water just before bed.

Let's obvious weakness I have is nighttime snacking. In the summer, when the days are longer, I walk in the evenings or take the kids to the park instead of sit and veg. The shorter days are a real pooper because I don't really feel comfortable being out for too long after dark, especially without Ben with me.

Another one, too little water drinking throughout the day. When I am in my normal routine at school, I bring my water bottle with me and I know I refill it at least twice, which puts me where I need to bed.

Especially considering that today I had THREE cups of coffee(which really doesn't surprise me with our cold weather), I need to seriously offset that with water intake.

What else? It looks like I could find ways to replace some carbs with vegetables. Easy. Munch on carrots and celery instead of snack mix.

I can also add some nutritious food earlier in the day, it looks like I am consuming too few calories early on and overcompensating later in the evening. 

Looks like I was where I need to be on protein and dairy and pretty close on fruits.I could always eat more vegetables.

Also, I never drink wine on the weekdays, but maybe I could switch to some red, to add antioxidants?

I'm no nutritionist but I did take nutrition over the summer so I hope I am getting at least some of this right!

I will probably keep a nutrition log from time to time to see where I can improve.

So goals:

1) Cut back to only 2 cups of coffee per day
2) Substitute some carb munchies for veggie munchies.
3) Drink more water

Friday, January 6, 2012

Up to January 6th

Woohoo!! Here we go! This year I have resolved to run 1000 miles. I know I can do it! I wonder if I ran that much last year anyway...probably not with the lengthy breaks I took. I probably did it in 2010. Having this blog will help me track regular work-outs and progress, and give me a place I can elaborate on details I feel are relevant to the well as give me a vent for struggles. I am hoping to keep it pretty simple though. My lengthy posts will probably only be when I run races.

My last run was in November, and I have felt so out of shape! Not to mention I have gained a little weight over the holidays, thankfully just 5 pounds. I can handle that.

Running Log:

Tuesday: 3 miles with jogging stroller in the morning. It felt so good to be back out there! I felt like I could rule the world. I went fairly slow and I did not take any walking breaks. I ordered a new pair of skapris, I felt like a rockstar. I rolled out my legs before bed.

Wednesday: 2 miles on the treadmill at the SEPRD around 7:00pm, my first time using it. It felt SO HARD! My legs felt heavy and I just didn't have much in me. Maybe it was evening, maybe I'm just THAT out of shape! I managed to squeeze out 2 miles and then I walked for another half a mile.

Thursday: 3 miles in the morning, no stroller. Felt pretty tough again. I had to use a lot of mind over matter here. That being said, I made it the whole way, going slow, except one brief moment to tie my shoes. Rolled out my legs before bed.

Friday(today): Today I felt like I needed a form of cross-training so I went for an hour-long walk on the Astoria Riverwalk. Felt really great. However, today I felt like I failed because ravenous hunger hit me and I had a two-cheeseburger meal plus Sprite at McDonald's, then I hate 1 1/2 eggrolls at dinner. I ate some healthy stuff too...but bad eating guilt hit evenso. Gonna stretch and roll out my legs.

Thursday, January 5, 2012


Note the date! This is when I first started the blog :)

My name is Melanee Berman. I am a wife to a Coast Guard pilot who has served for 15 years now. We have three boys, ages 13, 9 and 7. We live in NW Oregon not far from Portland (extremely running friendly town!). I am a nursing student. I love running.

My running "hobby" began a long time ago if we're going that far back. I always loved running and was often faster than even the boys in my class. On into highschool I was part of our 4x100 and 4x400 relay teams and ran the 100m and 300 m hurdle races. I never really ran much longer distances. Being a sprinter I worked hard, but always at shorter spurts of exertion. When my track coach would make us sprinters run 2 miles we would all die. I laugh at that now. I remember my senior year of high school I decided to give cross country a shot, while playing volleyball. It just looked fun and I wanted the extra patch for my letterman's jacket. I wasn't sure I could really do it, but my track coach Doug Pierce always used to say, "Anyone can be a long-distance runner." I didn't believe him then, but he was right.

Fast forward 5-8 years through marriage and three babies and I had changed a ton. I was no longer the "spring chicken" I was during track team. I still didn't like long-distance running so after my kids were born, I would go on long power-walks every morning and do a pilates dvd I had at home. It worked just fine for me and helped me get back into shape, albeit was MUCH harder with my third and I felt like I just couldn't tone my legs and I just couldn't lose the last 5 pounds. We passed his first birthday and I still felt like I had a ways to go. That was frustrating.

Then sometime during the end of 2006, as I was still struggling to stay in some sort of shape, my last baby had turned 2 and my oldest son was in school. My husband and I decided it was time for a better stroller, one that could also work as a bike trailer. We came across a company out of Canada called Chariot and purchased one online at a discount. (When I tell this story I always sound like I'm trying to sell these strollers but it is an honest part of my journey). It was the first expensive purchase we ever splurged on and it has been worth every penny! I loved my new, light, smooth, easy-to-push stroller and I walked and walked and walked with it. I loved it! My walking route included a few really good hills and one day I got tired of being drug downhill by my stroller as gravity pulled it down the hill. Instead I started jogging down the hills. And that, my friends was the day I became a runner :)

Not a month or two later, I heard of a friend of mine who was doing some running as well, and who was counting mileage. That was foreign to me. I remember her saying, "Yeah I ran 2 miles today..." or "I just can't get past 4 miles..." I counted minutes. So I mapped the route I had been walk/jogging and I started pushing myself to run just a little more, or to extend my route just a little longer, kind of like she was. Because hey, if she could do it, I knew I could.

Then I heard about these "fun runs" that happened in different areas of Mobile. Someone linked me up with the info about a run happening for St. Patty's Day. I knew there was a parade and festivities for the family later in the day as well. I don't know what motivated me honestly, I guess I just couldn't stand not knowing what I could potentially accomplish. So I got up early, left my sleeping family behind and I drove my solo self down town. I wore a festive green tank and a pair of navy Coast Guard shorts and put my hair in two french braids, a la St. Patty's Day fashion. I saw two ladies that I knew as acquaintences that welcomed me to my first race, all smiles to meet a newbie. It was pretty cold that morning and I froze to the start line. It was really low-key and we all just shuffled up to a line and some random person blew the gun. There were maybe 100 people there which felt like a lot at the time.

I remember a lot about that first race. I remember being nervous around every curve that I was going to take a wrong turn. I remember being so surprised at how old some of the racers were. I remember getting to about mile 2 and gasping for it to be over, unsure of how on God's green earth I would ever finish, but somehow continuing on, because everyone around me was and darn, I was going to finish and do my best! And I remember somewhere toward the end, some really old guy passed me, right before I passed some police officer that looked really fit. It was so funny! And then I made it, finishing strong! I honestly could not believe I actually did it. It was a small race, so no medal or anything but I got a t-shirt and still have my race bib.  I had finished in 26:51 (8:41 minute mile pace),  2nd in the 25-29 division, 58 seconds behind the first place runner. Oh man, this was gonna be a good hobby ;)

So that's how it all got started.

I have ran: 1 marathon, 5 Half Marathons, 3 10Ks, 5 5Ks and 1 Warrior Dash. Some have been slower than others, some have been more fun. But all in all, I am proud of every time I have stepped onto that finish line, no matter what time.

Marathon: 4:43:58
Half Marathon: 1:54:07 (2010)
10K: 51:11 (2010)
5K: 21:19 (2010)