Friday, March 31, 2006

Your Questions Answered

Here are the answers to your questions. These were great questions, by the way. You guys are creative. Be warned, this is a long post.

Courtesy of Nic:

1. Friends - When did you know your best friend was your best friend?
Oooh, that's a hard question. I have never really been a trusting person and have always had more guy friends than girl friends because guys will tell it like it is and aren't judgemental. But, I have one really close girl friend, who I would label my best friend and I don't worry about how dorky I am with her or how she perceives me or even that she talks about me behind her back. I know she will always be my friend and be there for me and me for her.

2. Sex - How do you feel about same-sex marriages?
That's a good question too and very controversial. Well, I am a Jesus Freak, so I believe and am told in the Bible that marriage is a covenant between a man and a woman with God. However, I also believe everyone has the right and a natural instinct to love. So, I think our laws should remain marriage between a man and a woman because our country was founded on Christian beliefs, but I think there should be equal rights for all including health care, insurance, etc. Is that totally contradictory? Really, the verdict's still out.

3. Music - Can any song make you cry? What song?
One song that makes me cry is "Letters from War" by Mark Schultz. Mark Schultz is a contemporary Christian artist who sounds a lot like the lead singer from Stix. The song talks about a young soldier who goes off to war and is captured by the enemy and his mother send him letters everyday. And then one day he comes home and surprises his mom and he's got all of her letters she sent him. Chokes me up every time.

4. Drugs - What do you think can be done to clean up the use of steroids in sports? Is there any hope?
When I was a collegiate athlete, drug testing was really important. Not only could the NCAA test you at anytime, but the Big Ten had even stricter rules about testing. There was no way you could have gotten away with doing it. I don't understand why more sports don't have the same strict testing rules. I am not a huge professional sports fan, but I hope that more drug testing will bring back the love of sports. I think there's hope, as long as there is cooperation.

5. Love - Have you ever been IN LOVE with someone who didn't love you back?
Yes. I had a high school boyfriend (serious boyfriend) who I smashed his heart into a million pieces. We were able to become friends again and then became really close again in college. I would even say that I was in love with him again. I suggested to him that we date again and he turned me down saying that if it didn't work the first time that it wouldn't work the second time. Then he started dating another girl and married her. And, although I was dating my husband at the time, it really broke my heart.

6. Open - What do you love the most about your life right now?
This might be a little weird, but I really love my job. I think the best thing that happened to me was to get laid off from my last position. Although I had always wanted to be an engineer, the career transition has been pretty smooth. I think my engineering background helps me a lot in the IT field. I feel challenged, yet confident. And I LOVE the people I work with. I no longer loathe getting up in the morning.

Courtesy of JKR:

1. Friends--Which friend would you take if you were chosen to be on "The Amazing Race" and why?
This sounds so cheesy, but I would probably take my husband, Dave. We're very much opposites, and therefore, make a great team. I'm the type A personality and the athletic one and he's more laid back and the thinker. I think I would give my right arm to be on TAR.

2. Sex--Who is your celebrity "get one free" guy?
So many choices!!! I think Tom Cavanagh. I like the dorky cute, I guess. Or maybe Andre Agassi. I got a think for baldness too. And I've had the hots for him since high school.

3. Music--What song can you absolutely not walk to? When running, of course.
Totally old school, "Free at Last" by DC Talk.

4. Drugs--Will you tell your kids the truth when they ask??
I have never done any drugs, so nothing to hide.

5. Love-- What is the stupidest thing you've ever done..In the name of love??
It didn't seem stupid at the time, although now it's so comical, but the same guy I was talking about above...when he told me he was engaged I actually told him that it was supposed to be me and that we were supposed to get married and that everyone thought that. That was pretty stupid. He didn't choose me...that only happens in the movies. I think I did prettygood with my selection anyway (Hi Dave).

6. Open-- What does your "go to" outfit look like. The one you wear when you have "nothing to wear."
I am through and through a t-shirt and jeans girl. T-shirt, jeans, tennis shoes, and a hooded sweatshirt.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Twenty Questions

Nope, only six.

Okay, I am totally steeling this from Nic's blog.

Did you ever want to know...?

Ask me a question about each of the following:

1. Friends
2. Sex
3. Music
4. Drugs
5. Love
6. Open

No matter how rude, sexual, or confidential. Ask the questions in the comments and I'll respond in another post (tomorrow, probably).

I'll answer with what I feel is appropriate, but I will answer each question. :) I have in-laws and other family members who read this blog, so I'll probably be a little choosier with my words.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Alternative Spring Breaks

Last night Dave and I watched a special program on MTV called "The Amazing Break," which was about alternative spring breaks. The program profiled students who decided not to go and party in Mexico during spring break and instead did something beneficial. The trips included clean-up in Biloxi, MS, a shoe drive in South Africa, a protest on conservative campuses, and a work project in a homeless shelter.

Except for my first spring break in college when I spent the entire week at two-a-day practices for crew, I spent my breaks on these alternative spring breaks. My first work project spring break was in Miami/Homestead, Florida where I worked on the Collegiate Challenge for Habitat for Humanity after Hurrican Andrew (I believe). This was my favorite work project. We worked alongside other college students building an entire neighborhood and actually got the opportunity to meet the families for which we were doing the work. My second work project was in Spartanburg, South Carolina again with the Collegiate Challenge and Habitat for Humanity. My third work project was in Applachia in Jonesville, Virginia (I believe) for the Applachian Service Project. We repaired a house for a family whose patriarch had black lung disease from working in the coal mines. Finally, my last spring break (actually the day after I graduated) was in Port-a-Prince, Haiti where I took part in a cultural exchange and worked with children with TB in a children's hospital.

I've been a long time fan of MTV. I have watched every Real World since it started over 10 years ago. I've watched several of their other reality shows like Laguna Beach and Newlyweds and occassionally watched the spring break specials. But, I've noticed that MTV is going downhill and not showing a true representation of young people in America anymore. Maybe I'm just getting old. I dislike that the show I watched yesterday was just a show and not interwoven into their spring break madness. I dislike that the Real World is no longer about people who are driven and just trying to catch a break and MTV is helping them and instead has become a big boozing show. I really dislike that Laguna Beach is their most popular show and only a small fraction of the world actually lives their 'Laguna Beach' lives.

Now that we're older and wiser, would you spend your spring breaks the same way? If you had an extra week of vacation how would you spend it? Am I the only one who is fed up with the societal pressures put on kids? I'm just complaining today, I guess.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Big Accomplishments

The other day I posted my "List for Life"--things I want to accomplish before I die. To my surprise I really didn't get much response on your lists. Today I was thinking about the things I've already accomplished. Here are some that I thought of off the top of my head.

- State title in floor exercise (gymnastics)
- Walking on OSU's women's crew team and racing in the novice A boat
- Graduating with a degree in engineering
- Running my first marathon
- Qualifying for and running the Boston Marathon
- Completing my first half Ironman

What are the things you feel like were big accomplishments in your life? What are your goals now? What's holding you back from accomplishing your goals? What are your smaller goals that you can accomplish NOW? (I've really been inspired the last couple of weeks; can you tell?)

Monday, March 27, 2006

Coming Attractions

Running is so boring right now, there's really not much to post. The taper starts today for the marathon, although in terms of long runs, the training never really started. I did 3 long runs--15, 17, and 20--but I have done at least a dozen 12 milers and being that all weeks were between 40 and 50 miles. I'm not really freaking. I think it's going to be a great Boston. I'm running a half marathon this weekend and it should be a good measure of how the training has gone.

So the hubby and I have spent the weekend whipping up some new stuff. It's not quite done yet, but hopefully will be by the end of the week. Keep your eyes on the sidebar for some new stuff. We're really excited about it.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

NOW--No Opportunity Wasted

I am a HUGE fan of The Amazing Race and recently checked out Phil Keoghan's book No Opportunity Wasted: Creating a List for Life. I haven't gotten to read any of it yet (I've still got 5 chapters left in Harry Potter), but Dave's been reading it and I've been checking out the website.

I have been very fortunate and have gotten to do a lot with my life. My parents always encouraged to reach for my goals and I feel like I have. Two years ago I created my first list for life. Here's my list.

-Surf in Hawaii
-Complete an Ironman triathlon
-Attend Wimbledon
-Attend US Open (accomplished this last year)
-Learn to proficiently play the guitar
-Quilt a double-wedding ring quilt (I started this last year and maybe someday I'll finish it)
-Play tennis with Andre Agassi
-Attend the Olympics
-Own my own business
-Have a million dollars
-Learn to speak another language fluently
-Record a demo and send it to record companies
-Own a beach hours and live in it during the summers

So, what's on your list?

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Teddy Geiger and I are no longer friends

Fair warning...this post has nothing to do about running.

I must admit, I'm kind of a music snob. Not in the sense that I only listen to underground music that nobody knows and only is played on MTV2, but I enjoy real music. You know, people who can actually play instruments and write their own stuff. My MP3 collection contains a lot of Harry Connick, Jr., Michael Buble, Jamie Cullum, Simon and Garfunkel, and what I call chick rock like Bethany Dillon, Jennifer Knapp, Michelle Branch, Saving Jane, etc.

Recently I was one of about three people who were watching Love Monkey on CBS and was introduced to Teddy Geiger. He's this teenager who an amazing voice and plays the guitar and has a really great song right now that's being played on top 40 called For You I Will (Confidence). This morning I happen to catch the video on MTV.

Sidenote, yes I am turning 28 on Easter and yes I still watch MTV, A LOT! So what?!

Anyway, the video. There's always a love interest in the video and this one was no exception. And who was it? Freakin' Kristen Cavalleri (from Laguna Beach). Ew! Why Teddy, why?

Suffice it to say, Teddy Geiger and I are no longer friends.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Rough Run

Saturday was my 20 miler and it was rough. I knew it was going to be before I even started. I had a feeling I was going to have to do the whole thing by myself because Andrea was out in Arizona doing an ultra and Doug and Andy run too fast for me and they were the only others that needed to do a 20 miler. I was going to go early to the trail and run 6 before anyone got there and then run the next 14 with everyone else. But, I was too sleepy and got there at 8:00 when everyone else did. We had barely gone 200 meters and my dad was already making remarks about how I was falling behind. I was not in the mood for his comments. At this point in training, I am sick of running; I don't care to run another mile; and I just want the race to be over. So I fell behind and kept falling behind. By the halfway turn-around at 7 miles I stopped and cried. Dad had said he was supporting me in the marathon and that's why he kept coming out and running with us on the weekends, but what support was he offering by leaving me behind? At the end of the first seven miles, I declared I was done. I grabbed my waterbottles and went home.

Luckily, Dave was still home when I got there and he was just heading out for a 9 mile run. So, I tagged along. And it was much better. I slowed down the pace and spent most of the run within the 70% range. Dave finished his run and I kept going for another 25 minutes. Overall I ran 3 hours and 15 minutes. I'm calling it 20 even though I think it might be a little shy.

I might try another 20 this weekend just to feel a little more confident about my long runs, but this one I'll go alone and not worry about it.

Thank more week until the taper!!!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

I think it's a sign

Did anyone see this?

Thursday, March 16, 2006

New Toy

Yesterday I alluded to my new toy. Here it is.

This is actually the 550 model. I have the 450 model. The only difference is the 550 model is 7.1MP and the 450 is 5MP. I figure if I'm going to be blowing a picture up that big, I'm going to be using my SLR to take the picture. My SLR is 6.3MP.

Unfortunately, I haven't really gotten to play with my new toy yet. The first day I had to charge the battery and yesterday I ran until it was dark. It wasn't even a pretty sunset to take a picture of. Today will probably be the same way. Hopefully I will get a chance to use it this weekend.

In other news....Andrea is runnning her first ultra this weekend. I think she's crazy, but I wish her luck. Plus she's in Arizona; a place I've never been. My running just sucks right now. I must tell you I've been in constant pain since I came back from being sick--the second week of February! I have pain in my hip, in my quads, in my knees, and especially in my back. It's so frustrating. I know the miles aren't that important at this point, but I just don't feel like I can back off. It's become an obsession. Tonight's plan is for a longer run, but if it's raining I'm just going to go to the gym and swim. I'd rather be able to run my 20 miler this weekend than an 11 miler tonight. I hate this part of marathon training!

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Toto, I don't think we're in Kansas....

...cause we're not. We're in Ohio. So why is it so windy?! Could I have chosen a windier day to do my sprints?!

I started off yesterday running with the high school kids for about 3 miles. Part of the run was over an interstate and the wind was so strong it knocked me into a guardrail. I've got quite a few more pounds than some of my high school girls. I wonder how hard the run was for them? After practice my dad met me at the school and the plan was to run 5 X 600 at a 5K pace. That's a 2:38 per 600. Dad started the first 600 with me but he stopped at 500. He said he lost track of how many meters he was on (whatever). After the first one, dad only did 400s. He's not training for anything so I'll let it slide. My 600 splits were as follows: 2:36, 2:37, 2:36, 2:36, 2:35. My cool down was another 2 miles. I must have been really tired during this section because I ran straight into a pole with my elbow. It hurt! Brought tears to my eyes...or maybe that was the wind. Today, the elbow is pretty sore.

I was pretty pathetic yesterday too. I went to the grocery last night and picked up some recently dated Flexall and some Icy Hot patches for my back (yes my back's been hurting again). Of course, I run into the triendiest friend I have at the grocery and my cart is full of arthritis medication and tampons. I felt so stupid. Se la vie!

Hey y'all, I got a new toy yesterday. I will reveal later today (maybe).

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

We're #1

The OSU women's basketball team pulled the upset last night when they were rewarded a number one seed in the West Regional. And the best part about it was how much we ticked off Pat Summit and Tennessee's program. I really can't stand Pat Summit or the Tennessee Lady Vols so it makes me smile.

I am sure you've all read the horrible storms the mid-west has been getting the last couple of days. We haven't had the tornados here, but we have had lots and lots of rain. Last night I got in a whopping mile before the skies opened up and poured down buckets. I waited a half hour underneath the bleachers of the stadium for the rain to let up just so I could get to my car. It never did let up. I got drenched walking out to my car. I had to stuff my shoes with newspaper and put my socks and t-shirt in the dryer when I got home. And you've got to love Ohio weather. Yesterday it was 70 with rain. Today it's 34 with snow. Why would you live anywhere else?

Monday, March 13, 2006

Proud Mama

I spent a wildly, exciting Friday evening perusing Myspace to see if any of my athletes had anything out there. And I found quite a few of them. But ALL of them were clean. I was so proud. The 'worse' one I saw out there said she liked to make out, but she's a freshman in college so I don't really think that's all that bad. I think when I was a freshman in college I also enjoyed making out. :) Most of the Myspaces had lots of pictures from various social gatherings like Homecoming and Powder Puff, one of them had a list of their favorite Christian music, and another said he didn't want to lose his virginity until he was married. I was a proud mama after finding all that.

I ran a good 15 miles on Saturday. And surprisingly, my hip has totally stopped hurting. It's a holiday miracle!!! This week includes the big 20 miler and new shoes will be opened today. The training is almost complete!!!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006


I have had to cut back a little on my running this week. I have been having some pain in my hip and my quad for the last couple of weeks and it has gotten to the point where I can't run without limping. I have run some this week, but I backed down the intensity and just got through what I could. I have tried everything for this pain: ice, cold baths, swimming, hot tubs, stretching, lots and lots of Aleve and Advil. Last night, however, I pulled out the FlexAll 454. I looked at the expiration date and it said 06/2002. 2002!!!! But this morning, my hip and quad feel much better and I'm thinking I might be able to do a longer run this afternoon. I'm sure the shorter easier runs this week have made a difference too.

And speaking of expiration, I found out just hold I am yesterday. I coach at the same high school from which I graduated. There's exactly two types of people who live in New Albany. The ones who have been there forever and their entire families have lived in New Albany for ages. Then there are those who are completely new to the area and will only be in NA for a short period of time. I call these kids the CEO-kids. I am one of the first kind as my family has lived in the township where NA is located since 1808. Anyway, most of my high schoolers know that I graduated from there and they love to quiz me about who I know. Yesterday one of the girls started asking me about people and she came across a name of a guy who happened to be in my graduating class. To my surprise it was her uncle. Her uncle was in my graduating class! I am expired!

Monday, March 06, 2006

The Governator

(Or more interesting things about Columbus.)

You might remember a while back I wrote a post about knowing your town and what would you show people if a stranger came to visit your town. This post is about one of the big events that goes on in Columbus. I will soon begin the Tour Of Columbus complete with pictures. Stay tuned.

Anyway, The Governator.

Every year, during the first weekend of March, there is a huge gathering called The Arnold Classic. Originally, it was a body building event hosted by Arnold Schwarzenegger. There were tons of vendors handing out samples of steroids protein shakes and whatnot. The Arnold Classic still has all the vendors and is capped off with a large body buidling competition, but in the last several years the Classic has turned into a Fitness expo. There are now competitions in fencing, speedskating, dance, aerobics, cheerleading, figure skating, boxing, running (more on that in a bit) and this year there was even a Pay-Per-View event for ultimate fighting. I'm sure there are a lot more events that I didn't mention. To view all the details, go here. One of the events that my running friends are into is called the Pump and Run. It starts with each competitor bench pressing a certain percentage of their body weight. Then everyone runs a 5K race. For each successful bench press rep, 30 seconds is subtracted from the individual's 5K time. Usually the winner has a time of like 2 minutes.

One of the best things about the Arnold Classic is seeing the first family of California. I was at Easton Mall yesterday and Maria Shriver was inside Coach checking out the handbags, I guess. I always try to hit the mall during the weekend of the Arnold Classic. I have seen both Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger there before.

Personally, I've never been to the Arnold Classic, but it is a huge deal here in Columbus.

Friday, March 03, 2006

'Tis The Season

'Tis track season. And it all started yesterday with conditioning. Monday is the first official practice. To my surprise there were quite a few kids out for conditioning (more than we've ever had for pre-season conditioning). The weather was crappy. It was cold and damp and snowing. I thought the workout wasn't so bad--5 minute easy, 5 minutes hard, 5 minutes easy, 5 minutes hard, 5 minutes easy with 6X100m pick-ups at the end--but boy were the kids complaining. They're in for a rough season if they thought that was a tough workout.

My own workout was semi-rough too. I started with the HS kids and ran 1 mile around the track. Then a ran another quarter mile around the track while they cooled-down. When practice was over I ran two miles down Fodor Road. When I got back to the school I took a bathroom break and ran another 3 laps around the track. By this point the temperature was dropping and it was snowing pretty good and had gotten windy. Dad arrived at 5:00 and we went for a 6 mile run. When we got back to the starting point I only had two miles left to do, so I roped Dad into running it with me. He wasn't very happy, but he did it. So, I got in my mid-week long run. I have planned a seven miler tonight and then a big 18 miles tomorrow.

And it's supposed to be 17 degrees tomorrow morning. Sounds like fun, huh?

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Carmen Ohio

Oh! Come let's sing Ohio's praise,
And songs to Alma Mater raise;
While our hearts rebounding thrill,
With joy which death alone can still.
Summer's heat or Winter's cold,
The seasons pass, the years will roll;
Time and change will surely show
How firm thy friendship O-HI-O.

In Columbus, Ohio State is everything. Up until recently there were no profession sports in Columbus so Ohio State athletics were our teams. And frankly, they still are. The city stops during an OSU football game. You can go to the mall and it's empty. You can hear your neighbors cheering or yelling at the TV. You drive down the street and every house, car, and person has some sort of OSU paraphernalia. The first time I went to an OSU football game, I cried. I sat in Block O (the student cheering section) and the band marches in underneath you (now they don't--they changed the stadium a little) and performs script Ohio and the team won something like 70-7. It was awesome.

Now we can basketball to the list of awesomeness! This has been a great year to be a Buckeye fan. Our football team was co-Big Ten champions, beat Michigan (always a good thing) and then crushed Notre Dame in the Fiesta Bowl. Awesome. Our women's basketball team, which has been awesome for a few years and which we have season tickets, has finished the season ranked #6 with only two losses and won the Big Ten championship outright. Awesome. Our men's basketball team, which really didn't expect to be really good until next year, is ranked #8, has lost only 4 games and last night clinched at least part of the Big Ten championship. In the history of the Big Ten there was never been a school that has won the league in football, men's basketball, and women's basketball. It is awesome.

And those aren't the only awesome sports at OSU. The fencing team is one of the best in the nation. The synchronized swimming team has won the national championship all but 4 times, our men's and women's volleyball teams were both ranked in the top 10 this year, and our men's hockey team was ranked #2 earlier this season.

But if you think The Ohio State University is all about athletics, then you are missing it. OSU has some of the best colleges in the land. Our Fisher College of Business is ranked #13 for MBAs. The college of engineering (which I'm a graduate of) is ranked in the top 20 in the nation. Last time I checked our department of dance was #1 in the nation. And our college of medicine is ranked among the top academic medical schools for training practicing physicians.

So if you're reading this and you've already done the college thing, well then, just let me gloat about my school. If you're college bound, then you should consider Ohio State. At least check it out. It's awesome.


Wednesday, March 01, 2006

February Totals

February did not go as well as planned. Of course I was sick so that hurt my training, but I also was super exhausted from staying up and watching the Olympics which caused me to skip runs and then I really didn't do any long runs. In total, I was nearly 59 miles off my target. I'll try again harder in March, which really will be hard since track season starts officially on Monday.

February Totals:
Running = 122.5 miles
Swimming = 1600m
No biking

In some really cool cousin bought 4 scratch-off lottery tickets last week and won $10,000! Man I wish that would happen to me.