Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Groove

Now that I've been running longer distances I've learned one important thing.  It now takes me six miles to get into my groove.  I lose all track of time, stop watching my pace, stop watching my mileage like a hawk and just run and don't want to stop.  It's that euphoria, that high, that keeps me going.   Even on the days that I don't want to go, even on days I'm saying I'm only going to run X number of miles.  I hit the groove and all is forgotten and I'm free.  

Once I hit my groove, I am unstoppable, I am strong.  I am everything I never thought I could be.  I can now see me running 13.1 miles.  I can actually see me running even slightly beyond that, which kind of scares me.  

I've heard people discussing how far they have to run to get that spot, it's been kind of elusive to me.  Now I know why...I just haven't been running far enough to find it.  

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Path to Princess Half: 5 Months!'s starting to seem so close but at the same time so far away.  

Most of the big details are done:
Our first DVC stay booked
Flights booked
Princess picked for costume
Tutu found (getting ready to order soon)
Puff sleeves being made by a friend to slip on.
Friend on stand by to go with me if the fam can't make it.
Advanced Dinner Reservations mostly made (the rest depend on who is coming with me)

What's left to do?
Find a cute running tank to go with the costume
Research sleeves
Buy shorts for under tutu (hello Sparkle Bottoms)
Decide on whether I truly want to have a cute little glittery headband.  
To Race Retreat or not Race Retreat.
Buy cute Raw Threads Race You to the Castle shirt.  

What's up next?
My Jeff Galloway Princess Half Training Starts in less than a month.  Eeek...This is getting really

The big question still remains...who is coming with me?  Husband and Munch and Monkey.  Or my running friend.  Hope this one is answered soon. :)

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Ooh Shiny!

I've got a new running toy! Up until recently I have been running with my iPhone using the Nike+GPS app. Love, Love, love it!

I started to realize though that the longer I ran the more the closer my battery got to zero. Even if I started at. 100% is ended up super low. Outside of the fact I get a little twitchy without my phone, I just didn't like the idea of potentially losing phone functionality to support my runs.

Enter the Nano. I loved that the 6th generation was so small. Loved that I could attach it to a watch band. I am pretty much addicted/familiar to my Nike+ , so this was a no brainer for me. I opted for this version instead of waiting for the new one solely based on size. Kind of was into the idea of ditching the arm band bulk of my phone.

I was hesitant because I didn't think I would like the chords from my ear buds running the length of my arm. I was also concerned that I would have to start all over with Nike+ since I didn't see away to sign in. Turned out the chord wasn't a big deal but it will take a little getting used to, but wasn't the total pain I expected. As far as Nike+, I was quite pleasantly surprised that once I hooked the Nano up to charge that it recognized I already had Nike+ and asked if I wanted to sync it. I might have actually done a happy dance around my living room at 11p last night.

I think I'm in love!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Saturday Scenery

Every Saturday I head out to my normal long run location.  It amazes me how beautiful it is.  Lots of Twilight'ish heavy, tall trees, birds, squirrels, deer, well you get the idea.  

Since I was playing with my new iPod Nano today, meaning my phone was free from my Nike+ GPS use.  I thought I would take some pictures of where I am beginning  to spend a large chunk of my Saturday morning.  

(Note to self:  Next time I take decide to take pictures during my long run, I need to remember to pause Nike+ so I can get an accurate pace time.)

Towards the beginning. 
 The Suspension cool 

The Duck Pond...Very spoiled ducks and semi-agressive geese....Beautiful area though.  

Meet my "Nemesis Hills" or known locally as "Cardiac Hill". The first picture is going up.  The second picture is one of my favorites from today with my shadow, and this is coming back down.  I much prefer going down and hit a top speed today of 7:14 here.  

I can not wait to see the leaves start changing.  It is going to be an amazing place to spend my Saturday morning.  

The end result today.  Due to a previous commitment I had only planned to run five miles today.  Then I decide while running to do "just a 10k".  I hit 10k and didn't want to stop so I decided to go to eight miles.  I definitely could of kept going. It was a beautiful morning.  

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

More shake fun. PB Chocolate Banana

Peanut Butter Chocolate Banana
This is a mixture of a couple of recipes I found. The main part is from Spark Recipes when I Googled PB2 shakes.

1/2 cup Oikos Yogurt
1 cup unflavored Almond Milk
1/2 banana
1 scoop chocolate protein powder
2 T chocolate PB2

This may be my favorite so far! I want to try it without the banana Friday. I made this tonight and stashed in the freezer. I will move it to the fridge in the morning to thaw.

Shake, shake, shake

Today was my first attempt at making my own breakfast protein shake. Up until today I had been using one of the pyramid marketed pre-packaged shake mixes.

No complaints with the old, it just got expensive and I am getting confident enough with my food choices that I thought I could start making my own for less and have way more flexibility.

So armed with only chocolate protein powder, the Internet and Chocolate PB2 powder I started this morning.

I wish I had thought to photograph it before I slammed it down this morning. So for now I will just share the details on the recipe.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Shale
1 scoop double chocolate whey protein powder
2 T chocolate PB2
1 cup Unflavored Almond milk

Dumped all in blender on milk shake setting.

It was YUMMY! My old shakes would take me over an hour to finish, sometimes two hours. This was slammed in less than an hour! I was worried the snack monster would hit this morning and it did not! So not only yummy but filling too!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Strange Bedfellows

Just a few snippets from my long run play list today.  Set on random and right in a row.

First round:
Metallica - Fuel
Led Zeppelin -  Hey, Hey what can I do
Flo Rida - Good Feeling
Beastie Boys- Sure Shot
One Direction - What Makes You Beautiful
Jay-Z & Linkin Park - Numb/Encore

Round Two:
Nirvana - Smells Like Teen Spirit
Motorhead - The Game
Salt n Pepa - Shake your Thing
Marilyn Manson - The Beautiful People
Calvin Harris (featuring Ne-Yo) - Let's Go
Metallica - Whiskey in a Jar
Taylor Swift - We are Never Ever Getting Back Together
Pink Floyd - Run Like Hell
Usher - Scream
No Doubt - Settle Down

I love how jumbled up it was today.  Those two series particularly amused me.  Can I just say I love, love, love my play list.  It's two and a half hours of happiness.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Why I Run...September Edition

I know this is a subject I have brought up numerous times and I've gone all shiny, happy Suz with my reasons.  But I've neglected to mention one of the most important reasons why I run.  Seeing as September is a significant month to me, I figured this would be as good a time as any to bring it up.

Why is September near and dear to my heart?  It's Thyroid Cancer Awareness month.  Why is that important?  Because I am a Thyroid Cancer Survivor.  Over six years ago, my primary care physician notice a lump/nodule on my Thyroid.  That led to a series of ultrasounds and and more blood draws than I care to count as well as several fine needle biopsies on my thyroid for several years.  Four years ago the fine needle biopsy came back inconclusive, that biopsy led to a full/complete thyroidectomy.  A few short days later I was officially diagnosed with Papillary Carcinoma.  The "good thing" about Thyroid Cancer is that it is supposedly "the best kind of cancer to have" as in it's easily treatable (in theory). Though I'm not sure any kind of cancer can or should be dubbed "good" regardless of "ease of treatment".  But I digress.  After two rounds of Radioactive Iodine Treatments over the course of two years, every six month a trip to my endocrinologist for blood work and more adjustments to my Synthroid dosage, I finally have been advised that my thyroglobulin  levels are at an all time low (which is good) and I've graduated to yearly appointments.

So neat.  I'm a survivor, what does this have to do with running?  Easy, the loss of my thyroid = the loss of my metabolism.  After struggling for years not being at my "happy weight", struggling with constant weight gain and being the heaviest I had been (while not pregnant) I started Couch to 5k.  It could be purely coincidental that shortly after I started running that I finally started to see a downward trend to the scale, rather than the upward turn.  Running kick started my metabolism or whatever the equivalent is now that I'm missing my thyroid.

 Thyroid cancer took a lot from me, I kind of lost myself and some of my spark for awhile.  I allowed myself to be the victim, I allowed myself to wallow.  Running brought me back, running replaced what I thought was gone and amplified it more ways than I could ever imagine.  Running made me the victor of my circumstances, not the victim.  That, my friends is the true magic to running for me.

So in honor of this being Thyroid Cancer Awareness month, I wanted to share my story a bit more.  I also want to encourage you to "check your neck" often.  Be proactive, early detection is key.  For more information on Thyroid Cancer please check out for some facts about Thyroid Cancer.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Treadmill Tuesday: The View

Just for fun I thought I would share the view from my Treadmill. I am super fortunate that I work for a company that values and encourages fitness and over all well being. This is the view I see on my lunch treadmill runs in the company fitness center.

Just imagine what people were thinking when I whipped out my phone from my armband to take not one but several pictures. For the record, I did feel a little doofy but oddly rebellious at the same time.

Pretty exciting, isn't it?I have a favorite treadmill so it's pretty much the same view twice a week. Even though the building doesn't change at least the cars move and people walk by the vast expanse of windows right in front of the treadmills and ellipticals.

It's better than just staring at a wall though...Right?

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Path to Princess Half: No Turning Back Now

It's official.  Flights are now booked.  I am truly on my way to the 2013 Princess Half in Walt Disney World.  

Feeling kind of scared, kind of excited and slightly nauseous.  It's kind of funny because as much planning as I've thrown into the idea already.  I think it's been just that an idea.  Now it's I've bought a plane ticket and I'm on my way to Orlando real.  Ack!

Now the final detail remaining is who is coming with me.  Will it be the family or is it going to be a girls trip.  Only time will tell on that one.  But I can at least say with absolutely certainty that I am going to Disney World in February and I will be running my first half marathon.  

Race you to the Castle!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Eight Miles

Today was a milestone kind of day...I didn't break any records by any stretch of the imagination. I did break one important one and that was my own.

I ran farther than I have ever run before. A whopping 8 miles. Never, never in a million years did I think I would ever be able to utter that sentence. Mind boggling really. But super empowering! I feel unstoppable when I run now. I can take on the world or at least my running path.

I noticed today that the music was not as important. I could only tell you maybe two or three songs that played. I was enjoying the sights, the sounds, the atmosphere of the run. I wasn't concerned with my time or my pace. I was just concerned with being there and completing my goal.

And complete my goal I did and then some. Actually went past my goal. Yay me!

Eight miles down 5.1 to go. Watch out Princesses I'm coming.