Monday, December 31, 2012

Books Read 2012

My goal every year is to read 12 or more books.  I wish I read a lot more like Kyria, but alas, one book a month will have to do.  Unfortunately, I fell a little short of that goal this year.  The problem was I got bogged down in "The Perks of Being a Wallflower".  Yeah, I know, it's like 100 pages and an easy read, but I wasn't enjoying it.  So I stopped reading it and then I took a several month break from reading.  I want to finish it, though, as I was 2/3 of the way through it, so I'm back on the waiting list at the library and I guess the book will have to count towards my 2013 reading.  But I think reading is going to get a little easier and quicker as I've learned how to download books from the library to my iPad and you can only check them out for a maximum of 21 days before they disappear.  Guess I'll have to actual read them instead of renew them or just pay the late fees.

Onto the list:

1. "The Happiness Project" by Gretchin Rubin
This book was given to me by a friend who knew I was going through a really rough patch.  Unfortunately that rough patch was more like a nervous breakdown, which needed more help than a book could provide.  Dave and I both read this book and were able to pull ideas from it that have helped us this year in different ways.  This is a good book to read at the start of the year when wanting to radically change your life for the next 12 months.

2, 3, and 4. "The Hunger Games", "Catching Fire", "Mockingjay" all by Suzanne Collins
Dave and I bought The Hunger Games trilogy so that we could read it before the movie(s) came out.  Dave flew through all three books in about 3 days.  It took me a bit longer.  I loved Hunger Games and it made the movie so much better.  I kinda felt like the other two books were repeats of the first book, however, I did like the way Suzanne Collins ended the series.

5. "What do you want to do before you die?" by The Buried Life
I'm kinda obsessed with Life Lists (bucket lists) and absolutely love The Buried Life guys.  I thought this book would be a more than it was.  This was basically a picture book of other people's items on their life lists with very little stories about people actually accomplishing items on their lists.

6. "It Looked Different on the Model" by Laurie Notaro
Laurie Notaro is far and away my favorite comedy writer.  My favorite book of all time is "The Idiot Girls Action Adventure Club".  Although nothing will be as funny as that book, this one was really good and funny.

7. "Belly Laughs" by Jenny McCarthy
I've got to admit, I haven't read a single book about pregnancy, child birth, or how to raise a kid.  I don't know if I'm totally screwed or doing the right thing and soaking my mind with worries I don't need.  Anyway, I did really "Belly Laughs" which was funny but not really informational.

8. "Running on Empty" by Marshall Ulrich
Ummm, I don't know.  I'm so burnt out on running/triathlon books.  There's not much I don't know about running.  Not that this book was really about running.  It was about running away from problems.  I know several people in real life who use their running to escape life.  I like to think I use my running as therapy but live in the real world.

9. "Let's Pretend this Never Happened" by Jenny Lawson
Another comedy book.  Very, very funny.  A good recommendation from a friend on Facebook.

10. "Crossing Over" by Ruth Irene Garrett
Anyone could have finished this book in about a day.  It took me four weeks.  The story could have been over in half the number of pages.  Yawn.

Overall, I call it a down year for books.  I'm having trouble finding a book that I can be excited about.  I've asked for recommendations and have gotten a few.  I'm not a fast reader so I don't like to get bogged down in long books.  If you have any good recommendations, please let me know.  I'm going to try harder in 2013 (I'm so sure (sarcasm) that will be possible once the baby comes) to read more.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Week in Review

Monday - 1500 yard swim - 300 swim, 800 pull, 400 swim

Tuesday - 3 mile neighborhood walk with Dave
Being that it was Christmas and we both had the day off, Dave and I bundled up and took to the neighborhood for a longer walk.  It was slower than normal (I'm getting slower) but it was good to get it done.

Wednesday - 1/2 hour shoveling snow
I know, I know.  Go ahead and stone me about why I should not have been shoveling snow.  But, I thought I could just use this snow shoveling as a workout.  I have an ergonomic shovel and I was being safe.  Later in the night, though, my back was killing me.  I've had issues during this pregnancy with previous injuries and shoveling the snow definitely aggravated them.  I slept horribly and by Thursday I was still feeling pretty crappy.  Next time I'll make Dave get the snow blower out of the basement instead of using the shovel.

Thursday -  1.5 mile walk, treadmill / 1 hour prenatal yoga
This was hilarious.  First of all, I'm not too much into the yoga thing.  I don't really feel like I get a whole lot out of it and overall I find it kind of boring.  But, I thought maybe I should try it again now as I'm not very flexible and maybe it could help me in the whole labor and delivery process.  So, I did a prenatal yoga video at home.  The people in the video show you how to modify each pose depending on your trimester.  Sure, I probably could have been following the third trimester poses, but since I'm a little small and still can reach okay, I followed the second trimester poses.  My dog kept helping me out too by bringing me her toys or sitting right in front of me.  But my favorite part was at the very end of the exercise when you lay on your side and go through the mediation and relaxation.  I kid you not, my dog crawled up next to me and laid down on her back and did the same thing.  I wish I had a picture of this. 

Friday - Off

Saturday - 3 mile winter wonderland walk

Sunday - Off

Swim - 1500 yards
Walk - 7.5 miles
Other - 1 hour yoga, 1/2 hour shoveling

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Man, winter has hit hard this year and there's no end in sight!  Last night, the forecast called for 2-4 inches of new snow.  Dave and I went hung out with friends last night and when we left their house after midnight, it had yet to start snowing.  The forecast had called for the snow to be between 7:00pm and 1:00am so we figured, hmmm, this storm is going to miss us.  I checked the radar before we went to bed and it showed snow and lots of it, yet there was no snow outside.

Being that I can only sleep two hours at a time without having to get up and go the bathroom I was able to see throughout the night that was indeed snowing.  A LOT!!

When we got up in the morning for our group run, we had a lot of new snow on the ground.  Looks like we got about 6 inches of fresh snow, which made for our run/walk to be quite fun.  And beautiful!  Dang, I wish I had brought my camera!  It was quite, the snow was falling, and I was all alone on the trails.  I absolutely love winter running (walking).  It was a slow three mile walk, but it was so refreshing.  Dave managed to get in 6 hilly, snowy miles.  We celebrated with hot chocolates at Starbucks. 

Although I really wish I could run (or sled ride) in this weather, I'm so glad I can get out and still enjoy it.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Thursday Thoughts

For the third year in a row I will be spending my New Year's Eve working.  This is the third year we have a wedding on this date.  Feels a little strange to be having a wedding on a Monday, but NYE weddings are big business and we'll take the business.  I'm too old to be going out and partying on my NYE, but I sometimes miss the days of staying at home in my pajamas to watch the ball drop on TV and then immediately going to bed at 12:01.  :)

Do you have awesome NYE plans?  What's your favorite thing to do on New Year's?  What will you be drinking that I can't have until next year?  Do you even stay up until midnight on New Year's?  Will you be running a race on New Year's Day?

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas 2012

Did you have a good Christmas?  Did you clean up on the loot?

Our Christmas was spread out over several days.  We spent last weekend in Cleveland with Dave's family celebrating.  I had to work on Christmas Eve, so we celebrated Christmas Eve and Christmas Day just the two of us.  We realized it was the first time in the 13 years we've been together that we attended Christmas Eve services just the two of us.  Both of us had to work today, the day after Christmas, a day we are getting a major snow storm, and the day we were supposed to celebrate Christmas with my family. Because of the snow storm, though, we had emergency Christmas in the morning, in which everyone descended on my parents' house, unwrapped presents quickly, and got home before we got snowed in.

Although I expected a Christmas full of gifts for the baby, I was surprised to only get two baby gifts and everything else was for ourselves.  Nice, because this will be the last time this happens, but also makes me a little nervous because we have absolutely NOTHING for the baby.

I got all of what I asked for on my list:

  • Socks - 12 pair, I kid you not
  • Running shoes - 2 pair - I'm set for all of 2013
  • Headbands - I got two Sparkly Soul headbands.  One in grey and one in red, my favorite color.  Now I can't wait for my hair to grow long enough to use them.
  • 2013 calendar - I had barely taken it out of the wrapping paper and I had already written appointments in it.
  • Gift cards - I got two Old Navy gift cards which I'm going to use one for maternity clothes and one for after I have the baby in the transitional phase as I'm losing the weight.  I also got two iTunes gift cards totaling $75.  I am set for music for a while.  My iPod is going to rock!
  • Mug/Thermos - I got three thermoses actually.  One is a Stanley mug that keeps things cold or hot for up to 6 hours.  We tested this and yes, things were warm at 6 hours and still hot through 4.  I also got two other basic travel mugs which will be great if drinking the drink right away.  One was a girly color and the other was not.  I think Dave and I will both use these.
Some other stuff I got that's awesome:
  • LED shoelaces.  They light up blue and will be awesome for running or walking at night or if I get the opportunity to do another overnight relay race.
  • Air mattress.  When we created the baby's room, we got rid of our guest room, essentially, including our guest queen-sized bed.  I don't know how I feel about having overnight guests once baby comes, but at least we have an air mattress now for them to sleep on.
  • Household products.  This gift was quite funny.  My parents have a membership to Sam's Club and got each of the adults in the family their own giant gift.  Dave and I combined got toilet paper, laundry detergent, dryer sheets, paper towels, Gatorade, etc.  This was a great gift.
  • As I mentioned we got two baby gifts.  We got a Magic Bullet Baby Bullet that we will use to make and freeze our own baby food once baby starts eating real food.  And then my sister's family made Dave, me, and baby matching Ohio State tie-dye shirts.  They're really cute and perfect for football season.
  • Finally, the most unexpected, biggest, and maybe greatest gift of all time.....Dave got me a new treadmill.  Seriously.  We have an old one that has seen better days.  It has sliders and a stretched out belt.  It no longer inclines.  And I alone have probably put 1000 miles on it.  The new one comes WiFi enabled where you can program in routes and the machine adjusts for the routes.  It has a heavy duty belt that he got the extended warranty on.  I has one touch buttons to control speed.  Not only does it incline, it also declines up to 3%.  This is a dream machine.  I cannot wait for it to be delivered next month.  It will be so helpful after baby arrives and my time outside may not be what it once was and it will also help me get back in shape.  
Overall, a great Christmas.  I'm glad it's over, though.  Now it's 100% concentration on baby, baby, baby!!!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Pregnant Seahorse

I love that it looks like there is a pregnant seahorse right in the middle of my big, pregnant belly on my swimsuit.

Dave had today, Christmas Eve off.  I, unfortunately, had to work.  But since I only work part time, we had a few hours in the afternoon to run errands and hit the pool.  I haven't been to the pool in a few weeks and Dave hadn't been there in over a year.  I've gotten quite rounder in those three weeks.  This was going to be interesting.

The plan was to swim 3 X 500.  Dave's plan was to survive 1000 yards, somehow.  I pushed off first and it was barely 10 strokes in he was already passing me.  Good gosh.  I have slowed that much in the pool too?!  After a few laps I looked up and he was already resting on the wall and I was still going.  Sure, I may not have the speed right now, but I've still got some swim endurance.  By the time I reached 300 yards, I was feeling a little gassy and needed to stop before I threw up and then everyone would be done with their swim.  ;)  I did a few calculations in my head and decided to make it 5 X 300 instead.  The next set I would pull the 300.  300 came and went and I was feeling comfortable.  500 came and went.  Well, shoot, I might as well make it 800 yards at this point.  And then I took a break again.  Dave said he was done.  I still had 400 yards left.  I did these regular stroke with kick.  It always feel so funny to go back to kicking after using the pull buoy.  It feels even weirder when you're pregnant because it's hard enough to keep your butt and feet up when your belly is pulling you down. 

And then I was finished.  Dave said he was impressed with how consistent I was in the pool.  Running is virtually non-existent at this point, so I need to make a more conscious effort to get my buns to the pool and continue to work out and be consistent.  Summer races are looming!!!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Week In Review

Monday - 2.15 mile walk, treadmill
Ugh.  That's about all I can say about every workout it seems.  How do those chicks run all the way through their pregnancies?  I've still got my eyes on 30 weeks, but everything is getting harder and harder.

Tuesday - 2 mile walk, neighborhood.
It was cold outside but Dave convinced me to get out of the house and walk this evening.  He thought it might be easier for me when it wasn't a gazillion degrees inside a gym.  He was right.  This walk seemed so much better than the previous day's, although I was certainly huffing and puffing (and freezing) the entire walk.

Wednesday -2 mile elliptical/walk treadmill
You can read about the meltdown here.

Thursday -Off

Friday - The scary 2 mile walk

Saturday and Sunday - Off
We spent the weekend out of town at the in-laws for Christmas

Totals - 8 miles of walking.  Things are starting to slow down.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Scariest Thing

Friday was my favorite type of winter workout weather.  It was cold but not freezing and it was snowing - a very peaceful time to be out exercising.  I really wanted to do a walk and I didn't want it to be on the treadmill, so I bundled up in layers and headed out for a short two mile walk.  It was wonderful to not be walking on the treadmill and things were going great.  The snow had drifted in some spots and I kinda wished I had my YakTraks on, but I was getting it done nonetheless.  The wind was strong and caused me to really work in some spots.  As I made my way home and up the steps of the porch, I got really hot, and dizzy, and things started to go black.  All I could think was "oh crap, I'm going to pass out and land on the baby."  I found a way to open the door and yelled to Dave, "Help!  I don't feel well!!"  I sat myself on the floor before I did pass out and Dave came rushing down the stairs.  I kept telling him, "I'm hot.  I'm hot."  He helped me strip off some layers of clothes and take my shoes off.  My heart was pounding and Dave said my face was all red.  I sat on the floor a while until everything calmed down.  And then I felt fine. 

My mom thinks maybe I had a sudden drop in blood pressure or blood sugar.  It didn't worry me enough to call the doctor as I felt better afterwards.  Maybe I need to take it down a notch when I workout outside.  I'm just going to write it off as a freak thing and move on.  But scary!!!

Friday, December 21, 2012

My Christmas List

This was a weird Christmas to ask for any presents.  Sure, I always have a running list in my head, but it seems weird to be asking for things for myself when we have absolutely nothing for baby.  Nonetheless, I made a small Christmas list that would make my life easier post-baby.

Socks Galore!!!!
All of my socks are old and have hole in them.  Winter socks, summer socks, running socks.  I asked for all of them.

Running Shoes
I ALWAYS need a new pair of running shoes.  I thought it would be smart to stock up so that I would have some that would last me into summer and hopefully beyond.

Last year I cut off all my hair into a pixie.  It was fun for a while but now it's growing out and it's just awful!  Hopefully it will be long enough for a pony tail or something makeshift by the time the baby comes because I know there will be days that not only do I not get to fix my hair, I probably won't even get to shower.  So, I asked for some of those Sparkly Soul headbands to hold back my hair.  I've heard good things about them.

2013 Calendar
I know I have electronics out the wazoo and can keep an electronic calendar, but there's something about keeping a paper calendar.  I love being able to write down appointments and to dos and to be able to scratch them out after finishing them.  I asked for a Moleskine calendar.  It's my favorite.

Gift Cards
It's hard to find clothes to fit me this year and I don't want to buy clothes that may or may not fit me after this pregnancy, so I asked for gift cards that would help me with maternity clothes and/or clothes post-pregnancy (Old Navy).  This is a toughie as it is a competitor to the retail outlet I work for, however, I'm not sure I'm returning to work after the baby is born (more on that in another post).  I also asked for iTunes gift cards.  You can never have enough music on the iPod.

When I was training for ironman, I always wanted to have warm hot chocolate waiting for me when I got out of the cold pool in the winter.  And I did, but it required a trip to Starbucks and a gazillion dollars spent.  My goal for 2013 is to spend as little money on frivolous things as possible, including hot chocolate.  So, I asked for an insulated mug to take beverages with me, whether hot or cold. 

See, a pretty basic list.  I told my family that they can use this as a shell and build upon it or use it as a starting point for other gifts.  We'll see what they come up with.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Thursday Thoughts

I don't know about you, but I keep a rolling gift list in my head of things I want.  Only during Christmas time do I write it out on paper.  Tomorrow you can read all about that.  Today I want to know, what are you asking for for Christmas?  Any big ticket items?  Anything that's a must-have that you're going to be disappointed if you don't get.  Any gifts you're giving that are going to be super-awesome?

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Another {bleep} Meltdown

Tonight, I had another epic meltdown.  It went something like this...

Actually, it wasn't as dramatic but it did involve being crawled up on the floor in front of the kitchen, crying, while Dave hugged me and Sloopy licked my tears away.

Let's start from the beginning.

After procrastinating as long as I could, I headed to the gym.  Alone.  Dave's foot has been bothering him this week so he decided to take the day off.  I have not had great workouts for a while and I was kinda hoping without the pressure of Dave breezing through his workout that I would be able to take my time and just enjoy myself.  I started on the elliptical.  I took all the resistance and climb off of it and just went slowly between 140-150 steps per minute.  Barely 3/4 of a mile into it my heart rate was above 140 and I was frustrated.  I stopped and moved to the treadmill.  Again, I've been doing my walking in the 14:XX/mile range, but because Dave wasn't there I decided to back off and only do about 17:00/miles.  Even this seemed like too much.  I've been experiencing really bad reflux, so getting warm and getting my heart rate up just makes me want to get sick.  Regardless, I pushed myself to finish two miles total between the elliptical and treadmill and called it a day.

Last week I read coach's blog about Quiet Confidence.  What I got from her post is something we've talked about before - stay away from social media!!!  More and more I've been feeling like maybe I should. (Minus the blog, of course.  I have total control on the blog.)  I've recently put some things out on Facebook that have not gotten the response I had expected, which has caused me to just get frustrated and delete the post entirely.  I like Facebook because it keeps me in touch with people from my past, but it has also left me frustrated as these are not my real friends and they do not know me at all, yet feel like they can just comment on whatever.

Anyway, after the rough workout and being that I was all alone, I turned my frustration to Facebook and posted this:
Feeling super discouraged. I'm not sure there are a whole lot of meaningful workouts left. I really can't run anymore, my heart rate gets too high on the elliptical, and I feel overheated and feel sick just walking 17:00+ min/miles. If I stopped doing anything I'll gain another 30 pounds before this baby is born. I don't have a lot of faith in losing the weight afterwards. What can I do?
I got a lot of responses.  Most were positive and reassuring and then some were just, in my opinion, dumb.  Telling me to relax, that it doesn't matter how much weight I gain, to make sure my baby was healthy. 

First of all,  I am going with the flow with this pregnancy and being so much more laid back and calm than I ever have in my life.  Seriously. 

Secondly, it may not really matter how much weight I gain because I'm going to gain what I gain, but if I don't have to gain those extra pounds, I don't want to.  All that weight has to come off and I know that's not going to be easy for me.  I do not want to gain 40, 50, or more pounds.  I'm nervous because I gained a lot in the last 10 weeks - about 17 pounds.  And I haven't even hit my third trimester yet.  I do not want to have stretch marks; I do not want to gain weight in my face, my arms, my butt; and damn right if I can do something about it I will.  I have always been self conscious about my weight and size.  I'm 5'1".  Every pound counts.  Pregnancy has not changed the way I feel about myself when I'm at a size I do not want to be at.  I knew this would be the hardest part about pregnancy for me.

Lastly, my baby is healthy.  Everything has been great with the pregnancy and with the baby.  I am doing things like eating healthy, getting enough sleep, etc. to make sure the baby is healthy.  But, there are things I want and like to do to keep healthy - like working out.  I love running.  I love being fit and active.  It is my sanctuary.  If I can't do it, I might go insane.  Plus, I want to stay fit.  I do not want to have a whole year of trying to get the baby weight off.  I do not want to lose any of my muscle mass.  I want to be able to fit into my real clothes as soon as possible.  I want to race, really race, next summer.  If you can't understand this, then you don't know me at all.

By the end of today, my disappointment and sadness had just turned into anger and it took everything in my power not to delete the post entirely from Facebook.  I am going to think long and hard next time I want to post anything on Facebook about this pregnancy.  It's left me frustrated and angry with people.  This is MY pregnancy and I am doing it MY way. 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Non-Traditional Baby Shower

There are some things I absolutely despise about being a girl.  One of them is the "girl party."  You know what I'm talking about: bridal showers, baby showers, Tupperware parties, etc.  These are just dumb.  And let's face it, no one likes them.  So why do we continue to do it?  Is it like hazing?  The generations before us had to put up with that crap and you must too!

When you tell boys just how awful these parties are, they just kinda giggle and say, "come on, it can't be that bad."  Yes it can!  So when I told Dave that I would ABSOLUTELY NOT be having a traditional baby shower he wanted to know what all the fuss was about.  He did what he does best and googled it.  And wouldn't you know that the first entry that came up said, "UGGGGHHHH!!!"  See?  I told you so.

In the end, Dave agreed with me to have a non-traditional baby shower. What does this mean exactly?  Well, we're basically just throwing a party.  It's co-ed (and we have specified no kids - last hurrah, right?) and there will be food, adult beverages, X-box Kinect, board and card games, and of course, the photo booth.  We would love our guests to bring a gift, however, it's just whatever.  There are about 30+ people on the guest list and about 6 have RSVPed.  (If you were invited and you're reading this blog, please RSVP!!!)  We will not be having any stupid "baby shower" games like smelling dirty diapers or drinking things out of baby bottles, and we will not be opening presents in front of our guests (how uncomfortable).  We're hoping it's a good time.

My mom, though, was not all that keen to the idea of this non-traditional baby shower.  (Hazing?  Tradition?)  I caved and have agreed to have a more traditional shower the next day for all the women-folk.  I have said absolutely NO GAMES!!! 

What are your thoughts on these silly "girl parties"?  Do you actually like these types of parties?  What excuses do you use to get out of them?  What would you have done differently for your bridal/baby showers? 

Monday, December 17, 2012

I'm Streaking!!!

If you haven't noticed, I've been streaking.  Blog streaking.  In 2009 I blogged every single day and kinda really enjoyed it.  Not every day was an epic post, but every day was something.  Once I got going, it seemed pretty easy to come up withe something every day.  I wanted to try it again and just started doing it one day in October (the 21st to be exact).  This is my 58th day in a row I've blogged.  Most days it's been easy to come up with topics especially since every day is a new experience with being pregnant.  But, as winter is setting in, my workouts are getting less and less, and this pregnancy is dragging on, I'm finding it more difficult to come up with daily topics. 

I need your help.  I need topics.  What burning questions do you have for me?  Are there any topics you'd like me to write about?  Please leave me a comment below with a question or a topic.  Please!  I want to keep the streak alive, but I need your help!!!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Week In Review

Monday - 3 mile walk, treadmill
I fully expect my child to pop out hairless and be that way for several years.  Dave and I are both natural blondes and both of us were born without hair.  I looked liked the poster child for any cancer society until the age of three when I started growing hair.  Where am I going with this?  I kind of expected to go through this pregnancy without any heartburn.  Well, I haven't.  I've started to develop reflux in my throat following my afternoon nap.  Today I went for a power walk on the treadmill following my nap.  My throat was on fire!  Maybe I've got to rethink my nap or rethink what I'm eating for lunch.

Tuesday - 2 mile run/walk, treadmill
Dave and I have had a hectic week already.  The earliest we got to go to the gym today was 8:00pm.  I started my routine of 2-1/2 minutes walk, 2-1/2 minutes jog.  Dave must have had a lot of stress to sweat out because he was flying beside me.  He finished three miles and started his cool down before I had even finished two miles.  So, I just stopped.  Something's better than nothing, right?

Wednesday - Off
I had the busiest day today.  Work, doctor's appointment, longest phone conversation with our lawyer (business issues), had to drive across town to get some basketball tickets, basketball game.  I did not spend one hour at home before going to bed.  And this wasn't a "productive day" so it just felt like I lost a day.  

Thursday -3 miles elliptical
And the meltdowns continue.  The workout was going pretty well but I noticed my heart rate was starting to creep as it went on.  Of course, I was getting hotter.  And pregnant-er.  Somewhere towards the end of the workout, somehow my heart rate spiked over 150 and that's when everything fell apart.  I slowed down to 160 steps per minute, took off all resistance, and had no crossramp.  It was ridiculous.  Dave asked me if I was okay and I cried.  I freakin' cried.  I know it's going to be difficult to continue to workout the whole pregnancy; I'm just not ready to let go of it yet.

Friday - Off
Dave, miraculously, had the day off.  So we took the afternoon to finish our Christmas shopping and just spend time together instead of work off.  I'll take these days any day!

Saturday - 3 mile walk, Highbanks Metro Park, group workout
Either I was slow today or the group was fast today because they finished their 6 right about the same time I was finishing my 3.  Highbanks is a tough workout because of the hills and trails and landscape.  It was a good walk, though, and I'm glad I got out there.  The weather was good - can't ask for anything more than that for December.

Sunday - Off
Sundays are difficult.  I usually only get up in enough time to shower, eat, and head out to church without getting a workout in beforehand.  By the time we get home from church it's lunch, nap, and then chores until Sunday is over.  I've got to find a way to get another workout in during the week so I do not have to rely on Sundays.

And I've got to find a way to get back in the pool!!!

Totals - 11 miles

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Oh no! Not chocolate!

I knew this easy pregnancy was too good to be true.  As I've inched my way closer and closer to my third trimester, I've noticed some symptoms.  I've started to get back pains, my feet are killing me with very little walking, I'm a little more tired than I was, and I know get heart burn/reflux.  I actually expected to not get heart burn like a lot of people do because Dave and I are both natural blondes and we fully expect our baby to not have any hair.  Nonetheless, the reflux has been bad.  And the worst part, I notice I get it any time I eat chocolate.  NOOOOO!!!!  Although I've been told that I can take Tums or other antacids, my goal is to get through this pregnancy without taking anything.  So far, so good.  It looks like, though, I may have to give up my beloved chocolate from here until the end.  This is gonna suck.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Thursday Thoughts (on a Friday)

Enough talk about baby this week.  Let's talk winter running.  Winter is my absolute favorite time of the year to run outside.  And I'd say, I love to run when it is snowing.  Winter running takes a lot of equipment, though.  Hats, gloves, base layers, warmer socks, etc.

What's your favorite piece of winter running equipment?

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Mmmm, Yum!

Another day, another doctor's appointment.

This one I was kind of dreading: the glucose test.  I have no reason to believe I would have gestational diabetes, but my sugar intake is, um, a lot.  I ate pretty well leading up to the test: eggs and toast for breakfast, a banana for a snack, a sandwich and salad for lunch.  When I got to the appointment they handed me a little plastic cup of pink liquid.  I was told I had three minutes to drink it.  I took a sip to determine the taste and....

It was freakin' delicious.  It tasted just like the punch you would have at a baby or bridal shower.  You know, the fruit punch, sprite, sherbet concoction.  I downed that sucker in like 30 seconds. 

Then I had an appointment with the doctor.  Usual measurements, usual questions.  She then told me again that the baby was up in my ribs.  This time I corrected her and told her at the ultrasound yesterday that the baby was laying sideways, hip to hip.  She said, hmmm, we're going to need it to move.  Uh, duh! 

Finally, I got the blood test for the glucose screening; two more vials of blood.  For those of you keeping count at home, we're now up to 36 vials of blood taken during this pregnancy.  I'll have the results tomorrow. 

And then when I checked out, they scheduled the rest of my appointments until the baby is born.  I believe there are only eight more appointments with the regular doctor and I have at least one more with the high risk doctor.  There IS a light at the end of this tunnel.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

New Baby Picture!!

Let me preface this entry by saying, I understand that as a patient I should be my own advocate, do my own research, be on top of things, etc.  But, I have never been pregnant before and although I am trying to be my own advocate, I'm also doing what I'm told.

Today was our appointment with our high risk doctor, which included another ultrasound for a growth analysis.  Our appointment was for 7:30 in the morning.  Awesome, first appointment of the day!  We got there several minutes before our appointment and waited in the lobby.  At 7:40 I was called back where they got my vitals: weight (ugh), blood pressure, heart rate.  Then they sent me back to the waiting room, again.  Finally, after 8:00 I was called back for the ultrasound.  Call me crazy, but if your staff doesn't get there until 8:00, maybe you should begin your appointments at, say, 8:00?  We were walking back with the ultrasound chick and the first thing she says to us is "Why are you here?"  Um, what?  We were told to be here today at this time.  She's all, "you weren't supposed to be here until your third trimester."  Again, following directions given to me.  Then she kind of just flew through the ultrasound, pointing things out quickly, but not really explaining things.  I felt rushed and dissatisfied with this part of the appointment, but in the end, baby looks good and healthy.  Unlike what my regular OB said last visit, the baby is laying sideways with its head on my left hip and its feet on my right hip and it's back laying along the bottom of the uterus.

Thank goodness our doctor is super-chill.  We just love him and really wish he was the one delivering our baby.  He said everything is great.  He is still super okay with me continuing to workout and even suggested using some compression socks to battle varicose veins (no I don't have any, yet).  He was okay with us traveling late in February by car (Dave's thinking about doing Rock 'n Roll New Orleans).  And he wants to do another ultrasound in late January to check the growth again.

Despite the rough start to the day, everything turned out great.  Baby is doing really great and we are excited that things are going so well.  And look how cute it is? 

Monday, December 10, 2012

The Cleanse

This week is another week of baby appointments.  Tomorrow we meet with the high risk doctor and have another ultrasound and an evaluation of how the baby is growing.  Wednesday I start my two week appointments with my regular OBGYN and this appointment includes my glucose test.

The glucose test consists of drinking a potion that I hear tastes awful, then waiting an hour, and then having your blood drawn (or peeing in a cup?).  Your sugar levels are tested to see if you are at risk for gestational diabetes.  The doctor told me I did not have to fast for the test (good thing, it's not until 1:50 in the afternoon), but that I should be careful not to eat a lot of sugar that day.  (My sister said she had to fast for her glucose tests.)

Confession: Sugar probably makes up about 80% of my diet.  Ugh!  I hate myself for that.  (Okay, 80% might be an exaggeration, but I do eat A LOT of sugar.)

I am so screwed.

So, I decided today to try to cut out the sugar until after the test on Wednesday to make sure my system was rid mostly of sugar.  This takes a lot of work on my part to make sure I don't eat sugar.  I've had to rework everything.  For example, I usually eat toast for breakfast with cinnamon and sugar.  If I eat cereal, I usually put sugar on it.  I had toast with honey on it this morning.  At least it's a natural sugar, right?  The day of the test, I'm going to make some eggs.  I love a good evening snack of a hot chocolate or a piece of pie, but I'll have to wait until after the test Wednesday.

But you better believe, I'm having a candy bar as soon as this test is over!

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Week in Review

Monday - 2.6 miles run/walk treadmill
I'm embarrassed to say I did this on the treadmill.  It was 65 degrees today.  On December 3rd!  But, I worked a long day and laid around until Dave got home.  By that time it was dark and I'm not very good at running in the dark.  I don't want to fall and do any damage to Baby G, so we went to the gym instead.  It was about 9000 degrees inside the Y tonight, so I was forced to walk more than I wanted to keep my heart rate down and to keep from overheating.

Tuesday - Off
By the time I could have gotten out to workout, it was POURING outside.   Plus, I did ALL my Christmas shopping this afternoon and my feet were killing me from doing all that walking.

Wednesday - 3 miles elliptical
Dave didn't get home from work until about 7:30 and we had already decided to go to the gym no matter how late it was.  So we got there around 8:00 and basically had the gym to ourselves.  Dave hit the treadmill and I hit the elliptical.  I kept track of my heart rate and it kept creeping higher than I was comfortable.  So I had to slow down and take a little more time.  Safe, not sorry.

Thursday - 3 mile walk treadmill
Today was Dave's birthday and we had planned eating out Mexican and I had bought a cake.  I knew I had to do something to feel good about eating all that.  So, it was me, The Ellen Show, and the treadmill.

Friday - Off
I like to take Fridays off because we usually do a group run on Saturday morning.  Of course, I did have my swim clothes with me in the car all day.  Lazy buns!

Saturday - 3 miles group run
This was kind of a crappy run.  It was raining and muggy and things just didn't go as well as I had hoped.  I was walking within a quarter mile of the run.  Every time I have a bad run I wonder if this is the beginning of the end for my pregnancy running.  Dave always reminds me that every time I've said that I've had a good run the following week.  Let's hope.

Sunday - off
I have no excuse for why I didn't work out today.

This was not the week I was hoping to have.  Not only did the weather sucked (it rained and rained and rained - when did I move to a tropical location?) but I was just worn out.  I can tell that my third trimester is a few short weeks away because I've reached a whole new level of tired.  On Saturday and Sunday I took naps that totaled about 6+ hours.  That's cray cray! 

Hopefully I'll try a little harder and do a little better next week.

Totals - 11.6 miles

Saturday, December 08, 2012

The Meltdown

Today was just a rough day.  Dave and I got up early to go running with the group and it was raining, dark, and yucky - typical December day in Ohio.  I had hoped to have a pretty good run, but alas it was not meant to be.  I've grown A LOT in the last couple of weeks and the third trimester is looming in a mere three weeks.  I have to be honest with myself, my running days might be numbered until after baby is born.  I'm doing my best, but it's just not easy.  I was already feeling down about myself when Dave told me on the way home from the run that he and the group had been cussed at by a bunch of bikers on the trail for just BEING on the trail.  Let me tell you something about the Olentangy Trail.  It might say bikeway, but (a) the max speed is 14 mph and (b) on a Saturday morning there are about 1000 runners out there.  Those runners had big balls to say something.  I would have knocked them on their asses.

Anyway, I was in quite a mood when I got home from the run.

I like to keep my weekends good and lazy.  Meaning, pajamas pretty much from the time I get home on Friday after work until Monday morning when I'm ready to go to work again.  I sleep most hours of the weekend.  Lazy?  You betcha.  I only have a few more months of selfishness and I'm taking every advantage of it.  So, after my post-run shower I put on my leggings, a t-shirt, and a sweater shirt with no intention of leaving the house.  But, my dad had mentioned a few Christmas presents for my mom during the run so Dave and I decided to do a little shopping.  Crap, what was I going to wear.

Preface....I kind of have strict guidelines for what is acceptable clothing outside the house.  Leggings, workout clothing, sweatpants, are not acceptable.

As I've mentioned before I am struggling with my self image during this pregnancy.  Couple that with my severe disdain of maternity clothes and we were in for a total meltdown.  I really hate my maternity jeans, both pairs.  They are the full panel kind, which I roll down to fit bellow the belly.  But, because only my belly is growing (or so I thought) I have a hard time keeping the pants up.  They continually slide down as I walk taking my undies with them.  I look like a stupid teenage boy constantly tugging at my jeans.  So, I put on my jeggings, but they're basically glorified leggings and that goes against my rules for leaving the house acceptably; I just couldn't do it.  Then I decided I would just put on my jeans I wore pre-pregnancy and just use a rubber band to keep them "buttoned."  As I was laying on the floor to put them on (this is now how I have to dress myself as it's gotten too hard to keep my balance and be able to breathe to put on pants, socks, shoes), I couldn't get them passed my thighs.  What the hell was going on?  Wait a second.  I'm gaining weight everywhere?  How the hell am I going to go back to being the size I was?!?  Finally, I just stayed, on the floor, with my jeans halfway up, crying for help.

Dave, that little buzz wad, came in and grabbed my TriSlide.  Laughing, crying, peeing (the realities of being pregnant).  I was definitely in a foul mood now.

Finally I put on those damn maternity jeans and headed out.  Dave drove me straight to Destination Maternity where, of course, the first pair of jeans I see are $180.  No effing way am I spending that much money on a pair of jeans I'm only going to wear a few more months.  We hit the sale racks and Dave starts grabbing jeans left and right.  They were all full panel and I kept saying no, no, no.  I hit another sale rack and grab two more jeans that were not full panel.  The first pair I tried on were about 1000% better than the two pairs I already had.  They were a little tighter, no full panel, and seemed to fit really well.  Dave asked me the obvious questions.  Would they be able to grow with me that last couple of months?  I didn't care.  They were $20 and they fit.  Sold.

Things were finally looking up for the day.

I wore those jeans later this evening.  And, they're alright.  They definitely fit better, however the rise on them (crotch) is unbelievably long.  I guess that makes since in a maternity jean, but for me it just makes things droopy in that area.  I don't tug at them as much, but they're still not great.  The reality is, (a) pregnant bodies are just weird and clothiers don't really care and (b) I only have a few more months of this. Suck it up.

I always thought I'd want to be pregnant in the winter because it would be easier - not being miserable in the nasty, hot, humid summer weather and I could just wear sweats all the time.  However, (a) since the day I got pregnant I have been freezing and (b) it would be great if I could just wear summer dresses and not worry about pants fitting or not.

How many more weeks are left?

Friday, December 07, 2012

Are We Ready?

The question I get most often is "how are you feeling?"  Ugh.  I think I'd rather have people touching my belly.  I feel fine.  I feel great.  I am having the world's easiest pregnancy.  Next question.  But it won't be long before people are starting to ask, "are you ready?"

Boy, this is a tough question.

For 10 years I screamed, in my head and aloud, "I'M NOT READY!!!"  But at some point you just kind of have to be okay with now or never.   I actually think pregnancy has calmed me down.  I've lost control of everything and really, that's a good thing.  I'm learning to go with the flow and just let things happen. 

The other day I posted a YouTube video on my Facebook wall that just had me in tears.  I mentioned something about not caring if my child was smart, or good looking, or athletic, but I cared if he/she had a good heart.  Our former pastor from church noted that he knew we were completely ready for parenthood.  And you know what, I feel that way.  I am totally okay with what's going on.  Sure, I don't know the first thing about giving birth or how to bathe a child, etc., but I know the type of parent I want to be and I know the type of child I would like my offspring to become. 

So, how am I feeling?  Great.  Stop asking.  Am I ready?  Absolutely.  Let's do this.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Thursday Thoughts

The skies are grey, it's going to rain for the next four must be Christmas.  Oh and all the Christmas music on the radio.  One station in Columbus started playing round the clock Christmas music November 1st and another station started right after Thanksgiving.  I've got to admit I've gotten festive with my music by listening to the Nat King Cole Christmas music station on Pandora.

What's your favorite holiday song?  What's your least favorite?

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Pregnancy: Episode 28987934

Gawd, are you sick of hearing about my pregnancy?  I'm a little tired of writing about it too.  Nevertheless, here's another post about pregnancy.

The doctor has recommended to me for quite a while that I needed to get a flu shot.  I found it odd that I needed to get a special one (preservative free) and yet my doctor didn't carry or administer it.  I thought I needed a prescription for this special one and kept waiting on her to give that to me.  Again last week she asked me if I had gotten my flu shot, then mentioned the new study saying autism might be linked to getting the flue while pregnant, and insisted again that I get the shot.  I asked her where to get it and she gave me two suggestions: (1) one of the local grocery store pharmacies (we have mega-grocery stores in Columbus) and (2) my personal doctor. 

Over the weekend I went to this local grocery store and, of course, they were out of them and were not going to be getting another shipment.  They suggested another one of their stores, but I told them no thanks.  I wasn't going to be running around Columbus to different grocery stores.

Monday I called my personal doctor and they didn't carry them, of course.  Then I called the maternity line for the hospital in which I will be delivering my baby.  It was like I was speaking a foreign language to them.  They had no idea what I was talking about.  They gave me the phone number to the Columbus Department of Health. 

By this point I was pissed at my OB for putting me through this run-around.  If she was going to insist that I get the flu shot and it had to be a special one, then SHE should be either administering it or know exactly where I could go to get it.  Of course, though, I called and the effing office wasn't even open.  Good god!!!

At this point I posted my frustration to Facebook.  Many of my friends responded saying I didn't need a flu shot, that their kids turned out fine, yada yada yada.  While I appreciate their encouragement, I still felt like I should get the shot because the doctor requested it.  My doctor is super conservative when it comes to patient care, but this was one I understood. 

After work I stopped at the post office and then walked up to the CVS to see if they might have the shot.  Lo and behold, they did.  And then I had to wait 45 minutes from them to do god knows what before they administered it.  Luckily, though, it was completely covered by my insurance and I was given a 20% off coupon for my next shopping trip to CVS.  Oh, and, now I won't get the flu.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

2013 Racing Thoughts

In my head I have been debating about what 2013 should look like in terms of racing.  How quickly will my body bounce back?  How long will it take to get my speed back?  Will I even want to race?  Will I have time to train?  I'm hoping the answer is....I'll be back to running in a few weeks, have my body bounce back really quickly, and back to being fast and racing in no time.

So then the question becomes are there specific races and distances I want to target?  That's a toughy.  I do know that I do not want to do any triathlons.  I don't know if I'll ever do triathlon again, frankly.  Since I've started swimming again, I'd really like to try my hand at aquathlon.  There were two here in Central Ohio last year and they seemed to be pretty successful, but the racing company that put these races on has yet to publish their 2013 schedule.  If they have them and if they go well, I might go and do the aquathlon age group nationals.  Next year they are in North Carolina and that is within driving distance.

As far as running, yeah, I have no idea.  Part of me wants to finish what I started this year and train hard for a fast marathon.  I can't do the one I was planning on for 2012, Air Force Marathon, because I already have a vacation scheduled during that time.  I was using this marathon to qualify for the  Boston Marathon.  This marathon fell right in between the first and second week of registration for Boston.  If I want to qualify for Boston I am going to need to find a race prior to September.  With the baby being born in April, I'm just not sure that is realistic.  I would really like to run the Columbus Marathon again,  but it's after the Chicago Marathon so not likely it will still qualify me for the next Boston Marathon.  I don't know; I'm keeping my options only.  I have also thought about doing an ultra (50K).  Woah!  There was one recently here in Columbus that had 60% of it on roads or paved trails.  I am totally a road runner, so this one I find interesting and I wouldn't have to travel for it.  Plus it was the first week of November so I could run a fall marathon and still do the ultra.

But, I hear you can get really fast after giving birth as you've got all those natural hormones and I'm wondering if I should just focus on shorter races and try to see how fast I can get.  I have to admit, I'm pretty content with what I've accomplished in the marathon and if I don't do another one, I think I'm okay with that.  The training takes a lot out of you and you put all your eggs in one basket and I've just found a lot of fun in the shorter races and racing more frequently.  Being a runner is more than just doing marathons.  You can still be a kick-ass runner and not do marathons (a la, Steve Stenzel).

Of course, I am not going to decide anything or pay for any races until after baby comes.  I'm just dreaming as I get bigger and bigger and slower and slower.  ;)

Monday, December 03, 2012

Wrestling with the Body Pillow

The doctor told me at my last appointment that I needed to be sleeping on my side.  This is difficult for me as I am a back sleeper.  I look like a corpse when I sleep - flat on my back, arms across my chest, no movement.  When I had shingles (or whatever it was) a year and a half ago, I could only lay on my left side, so I built a wall of pillows so that I could lay comfortably on my side all night.  I had heard that pregnant chicks like using body pillows, so I got one. 

The thing is huge.  It is literally the size of me.  So now it's me, Dave, pillow, and Sloopy all in one.  It's just too much.

The first night I slept with the pillow, I only made it about half the night.  My left arm was asleep and my back was killing me.  Screw it!  I just slept facing whatever direction I wanted and could get comfortable.

The second night I slept the whole night with it, but when I woke up in the morning I had my arms and legs around the pillow, yet I was sleeping on my back.  Hilarious! 

I don't get it.  How am I supposed to stay on my side and not have my left arm fall asleep?  Plus, it hurts my shoulder and clavicle.  And, am I supposed to lay my big baby belly up on the pillow because it's just not that big?  Do I have to lay on my left side the whole night? 

Baking this baby is so complicated.

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Week in Review

Monday: 1600 yard swim (4 X 400 with 30 second rest)
               2 mile walk with Dave

Tuesday: 3 miles elliptical
It was hot in the gym tonight and the heart rate crept a little high - still below 140, but higher than the usual 130 I get on the elliptical machine.

Wednesday:  3 miles treadmill
Dave and I headed to the gym again tonight to run together on the treadmills.  This way he could run his pace and I could run my snail pace.  I have always thought my treadmill at home is faster than most treadmills.  And know I know it is.  The same pace I run at home which just about breaks me, was so much easier at the gym.  I like the treadmill at the gym much better.  :)

Thursday: Off

Friday: Off
We had planned on doing a walk today, but decided to go to an early movie instead.  We did take a very small walk with the dog, but I'm not counting that.

Saturday: 3 mile walk, Highbanks Metro Park
Our running group switches between running on a paved, flat trail and running the hillier dirt/rocky trails at the metro park every other week.  When we're at the metro park, I'm currently not able to run.  Going up the hills spikes my heart rate.  With the terrain continuously rolling, it's just nearly impossible to run.  Luckily, the weather was great this morning (mid 40s at 8:00am for December 1st!!!) so walking wasn't so bad.  I even got a "You go girl!" from some of the other runners.

Sunday: 2 mile neighborhood walk with Dave
I had plans to run today, however, plans got changed.  When I woke up it was warm, but raining.  I didn't really want to work out on the treadmill again.  Then we decided to go to church and then my niece and nephews had their Christmas play at school.  By the time we got home from all that it was dark, but still warm.  Dave and I headed out of the house around 7:15pm and did a quick 2 mile walk through the neighborhood.  2 for 2 (working out) in December.  Can I keep the streak alive?

Swim - 1600 yards
Run/Walk - 13 miles

Saturday, December 01, 2012

New Swimsuit

My mom had wanted to go maternity clothes shopping with me. That would have been nice, however, I've bought all the clothes I currently have/need online. So, my mom asked me last week if she could buy me a new swimsuit for my growing body. I agreed. We got together on Cyber Monday and looked through a couple of different websites. We finally decided to order a grab bag suit from Splish (my favorite) and see what the swimsuit gods would send us.

I received my order on Friday and thank goodness, it's totally acceptable.

The plan? I ordered two sizes up from my regular swimsuit size and will just wear a sports bra and/or bikini bottoms underneath it as necessary.

Friday, November 30, 2012

November Totals

November was a great month, even in the growing stages of my pregnancy.  I have continued to be consistent in working out, including running, walking, elliptical, and swimming.  I'm not going really fast.  I'm not going really far.  But it doesn't matter because I'm keeping in shape and keeping off the extra, unnecessary pounds.  I ran two races in November, Hot Chocolate 5K and Flying Feather 4 Miler.  We joined the Y and I got back in the pool for the first time in over a year.  How great it is to be swimming again.  I made it past my goal of 20 weeks and still working out.  Now I've got my eye on 30 weeks and seeing how long I can continue to work out.

Run/Walk/Elliptical - 53.7 miles
Swim - 3800 yards
Visits to the Y (between Dave and me) - 12, for $6.23 per visit

Thursday, November 29, 2012

22 Weeks

22 weeks?  Asian school girl?

My day has been so weird.  Just a little after this picture was taken my dog was barking at me, I guess assuming I was playing, and then promptly bit me putting a hole in my sweater.  Of course, I didn't discover the hole until I needed to leave for my doctor's appointment.  Then I went through about 9 more outfits until I found something appropriate that wouldn't weight a whole lot (seriously, I do not want to clothes into the calculation for weight gained).

Speaking of doctor's appointment....the day kept getting weirder.  I get to the doctor's office and they let me know I didn't have an appointment.  Weird.  I had it written down in my calendar.  Then they asked me why I was there since I wasn't due for my annual.  Are you serious?  You don't see the baby bump?  You didn't notice my growing file that said PREGNANT?!  Luckily, (I guess), the doctor had had a cancellation so they were able to fit me in.

They bring me back and weigh in - up 17 pounds.  Exactly what I expected.  Blood pressure - 112/60.  Then the nurse let's me hear the heartbeat.  Super strong.  Awesome.  Finally it's time with the doctor.  She takes my belly measurements, feels around my belly and then things get strange.  The last time I had an ultrasound was week 15 with my high risk doctor.  My regular OBGYN is going through my chart and mentions to me that the baby was measuring big, as shown in my last ultrasound.  Really?  Nobody mentioned that to me.  Then she's poking around my belly and said I'm measuring big.  And no lie, in the same breath told me I was doing great with my weight.  She said the baby was way up in my ribs.  That's when I stopped her and literally asked her what she was talking about.  I have only felt movement below my belly button, plus my muscles are all still attached to my ribs and I can still see core muscles.  She explained this away by saying the baby was breech and I was just feeling the baby's feet down in my lower belly.  I left so upset with the way this appointment had gone that I forgot to get my blood test and now super self conscious about the way I was looking.

I called my mom later in the day, told her about my appointment, and she said, "was your doctor drunk?"  Seriously, I have no idea what happened today.  I swear I have left more doctors appointments upset and confused.  That's not how I should be feeling about my pregnancy.  Luckily, I have an appointment with my high risk doctor in about two weeks with another ultrasound and a growth analysis.  Dave will be with me and we are going to ask A LOT of questions.  Hopefully, that appointment will be less weird.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Thursday Thoughts (on a Wednesday)

I was watching the morning news this week and they were talking about tipping during the holiday season.  They mentioned you should tip your children's teachers, the hair stylist, the doorman, the mail deliver carrier, etc.  Dude, you could go broke just tipping people!

I have to admit, I am not a big fan of tipping.  Hear me out.  I think people should be paid for their worth and legally, as in not lower than minimum wage.  Plus, why should I be tipping someone for doing their job?  Their job is to provide good service.  For example, a waitress is supposed to take my order, bring me my food, check on me at least once, see if I need a refill, bill me, and then collect the paid bill.  Technically, all of that should be in her job description.  If she's doing all of that, she's providing service, aka, her job.  Why should I have to tip on top of that?  Well, because for some reason it's okay not to pay those individuals minimum wage.  That's just ridiculous to me.

On the flip side, my photo booth business could technically be described as a service business.  At a wedding usually the florist, caterer, DJ, and coordinator all get tipped, yet we rarely get tipped.  Wonder why that is?

Do you tip extra for the holidays?  What are your thoughts on tipping?  Do you have a job where you get tips?

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

A Heavy Issue

I knew going into this pregnancy that the issue I was going to have the toughest time dealing with was how much weight I was going to gain, how big I was going to get, and how in the world I was going to take off the weight post baby.

Things were going really well, at first.  By week 14 I had only gained three pounds.  The doctor had said, if done right, I should only need to gain about 30 pounds.  Great!  30 pounds I can work with.  30 pounds is not going to make me look like a whale.  30 pounds is doable to lose post-pregnancy.

I'm roughly 22 weeks pregnant and the pounds have been packing on the last 8 weeks.  I've gone from 3 pounds gain to about 18 pounds gained.  The hope of only gaining 30 pounds is totally out the window.  Now, I was warned by several of my athlete friends that I was going to gain a lot of weight - like 50-60 pounds.  Good gosh, I hope it's not that much!  I'm still hoping to stay as close to 30 pounds as possible.  I'm trying my best - I'm still working out 5 days a week and I'm eating reasonably.  I eat a lot of food that's totally not good for you, but I'm not pigging out either.  If you see me now, it's quite obvious I'm pregnant (and I had the first random stranger ask me this week when my baby was due - of course, I was in my swimsuit).  But, I'm still looking pretty small for how far along I am plus my belly is starting to get round - all baby.  (Picture to come on Thursday.)

It's hard to pep-talk everyday and know that I'm doing alright.  I've never been this size; I've never been this weight.  Moving the weights on the scale freaks me out every time I do it.  I know that after the baby is born, if I breast feed, go back to running, and eat better (ha!) that I will be able to lose the weight.  I know that I HAVE to gain this weight to have a healthy baby.  I know, I know, I know.  I just want to know that everything is normal and that everything (my body) will return to normal. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

New Shoes and a Present (to myself!!)

Why hello new shoes!!!

And a little present to myself.

Holy baby bump!! 

More on my love for Saucony later this week.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Week in Review

Monday - Off

Tuesday - 3 miles, elliptical
Dave and I went to the gym tonight.  He hit the treadmill for four miles; I did the elliptical.  I have got to remember to wear a more supportive sports bra when doing the elliptical.

Wednesday - 3 mile walk with Dave
Dave and I power-walked the heck out of this three miles.  It was so difficult, that I even had to stop and take a break with less than a mile to go until home.  I don't particularly like walking, but I know it's keeping me trim and in shape.

Thursday - Flying Feather 4 Miler
You can read the race report here.

Friday - Off

Saturday - 3 mile neighborhood run with Dave
Ugh.  Some days you have it; some you don't.  It was cold and snowy - my favorite time to run.  Unfortunately, I just wasn't feeling it and struggled nightly on this run.  There were several walking breaks.  That's okay - just keep at it.

Sunday - 2 mile walk treadmill
Finishing the week off right with a quick two mile walk on the treadmill.

Totals - 15 miles

Saturday, November 24, 2012


Crushed ice + sparkling limeade

Friday, November 23, 2012

Flying Feather 4 Miler 2012

Ah yes.  The annual Thanksgiving race.  I was looking back through my Running Resume and it looks like I have participated in a Thanksgiving race every year since 2004, and the only reason I missed that one was because I had a broken tibia.  This is also the 5th time I have done the Flying Feather race.  We like this race because of it's swag - nice long sleeved tech shirt, gloves, hat, and a bottle of wine at the finish.  This year three generations participated: Mom, Dad, Dave, me, and baby.

This would be the longest run I've done since finding out I was pregnant.  I planned on just taking it easy, walk when needed, and collect mine wine and save it until after the baby is born.  :)  I lined up around the 11:00 pace and slowly walked to the start minutes after the starting gun went off.  I fell into an easy pace quickly and stayed comfortable.  This race runs on the road, around a roundabout, and then into a park where you wind up on the running/bike trail.  Usually, because I'm running balls to the wall, I find the crowds of people will clear out by the time you get to the park.  But now that I'm a little pokier, it never clears out.  For the entire four miles I was elbow to elbow with people.  Not that it was an issue because I certainly wasn't racing, but just a totally different experience.  I kept things consistent from beginning to end and ran/jogged the entire four miles.  It's nice to know that even 21 weeks into this pregnancy that I may be slower but at least I'm not losing fitness.  Goal #1!!!

My overall time was 41:47 for a 10:27 pace.  Not bad.  Not bad at all.  Next year, we'll be pushing a stroller...

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thursday Thoughts - Thanksgiving Style

I think it's quite obvious what I (we) am (are) thankful for this year.  So instead of asking you what you are thankful for, I'm going to ask you about your Thanksgiving meal.

What time do you eat your meal?
We always eat around 5:00.  My uncle is diabetic and must eat at that time.  (I don't know anything about diabetes, but that kinda sounds crazy to me.)

What did you eat for Thanksgiving?  What's your favorite Thanksgiving food?
Turkey, obviously!  My favorite Thanksgiving food is deviled eggs, and I make the best.

What did you personally make towards the Thanksgiving meal?
Dave and I made the deviled eggs (duh), pumpkin pie with bourbon maple whipped cream, and asparagus.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

For the Love of Running 2

I hired a coach in 2008 with one specific goal in mind - break 3:30 hours in the marathon.  That fall I went 3:30 and change in the Columbus Marathon, and then finally busted through the 3:30 barrier at Boston 2009.  I had accomplished my goal.  But, I kept working with a coach and decided to give triathlon yet another try.  In the process, I also got sponsored and everything went from fun to serious.  I felt like expectations were high and it was easier to just not race or drop out of races than to not have to hit any goals.  I usually don't like "the easy way out" but it's all I could do.  Finally with my second failed ironman, I knew it was time for a break.

In 2012, I just wanted to run - no more sponsors, no more team, no more coach, no heart rate monitor, and in a lot of cases, no more watch.  It just became about me and the road.  For the first part of the year, the simplicity of running helped get my head screwed back on straight.  Once I got my shit together, I was able to tackle some goals, successfully I might add.  Then I found out I was pregnant and everything changed yet again.

I have run 5 or more races since finding out I was pregnant.  Instead of lining up in the front, sizing up my competition, I line up with those wearing tutus, matching outfits, crazy hats, and non-running shoes.  It's a whole different world back there.  One I had kinda forgotten about.  I don't get to run for competition right now, but instead because it's so great to still be out there doing it and staying healthy.  For the first time in a long run, it's nice to look around to where I am and where I've been and just smile.  Running has become almost refreshing.  At 21 weeks pregnant it's a victory just to get out there and still be able to lace up my sneakers and even attempt to run.  I am seriously loving running right now - maybe more than I have in years.

Of course, I can't help but think about next year.  What will happen after baby comes?  How soon will I get to really race again?  How quickly will my body bounce back?  Do I want to race short or long?  Right now, I know that still being able to run and keep in shape will pay dividends after the baby comes (and hopefully for labor too).  And right now, I just want to keep smiling and running at my snail's pace.  I'm still having fun.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

12 for 2012 - Run 12 Races

I set several goals for myself this year, including one to run 12 races.  Basically, the goal was one race per month.  I hit this goal this past weekend.  Let's review:

I started the year off right by racing on the very first day with the Columbus River Run (1).  The race featured the Columbus Marathon race director who started at the back of the field and raced.  Anyone he did not pass received a free entry into the marathon.  I thought I had a shot.  I didn't take into account, however, that (a) I was really out of 5K shape and (b) Darris, the race director, is crazy fast and passed pretty much the whole field except three people.

I raced again in January at the Houston Half Marathon (2).  Our "group" had decided to go to Houston to watch one of our own in the marathon Olympic trials and we would run the half or full marathon too.  This weekend was an absolute mess for me.  I was at my lowest point for my depression/anxiety/nervous breakdown.  I couldn't leave the hotel room for anything.  I was able to get out to watch the marathon trials and ran in the half marathon.  Thank goodness, the year could only go up from here.

Now that I was on the upswing of my total mental mess, it was time to race again.  I did my favorite winter race, Last Chance for Boston (3), the half marathon, and did WAY better than I thought I was going to do.  Maybe this year wouldn't suck after all.

I didn't race in March, but did tackle another one of my "12 for 2012" goals of running every day for a month.  I did most of these runs without a watch and without any idea how far or fast I was going.  I had no idea what a HUGE difference this running would make for me.

A former athlete of mine decided in June to meet up and do a half marathon.  I really wanted to train and race well for it, so in April I started following the "Run Less, Run Faster" training plan for this half marathon.  The plan was intense and had a lot of speed work, so I decided to do one of the speed work sessions as a 5K, the Bunny Hop 5K (4).  I was like a total amateur at this race, forgetting my watch.  Turned out to be a good thing as I raced myself to a new PR.

To test where my fitness was for my June half marathon, I decided to do the Cap City Half Marathon (5).  I didn't expect much but sure had a great performance, with one of my fastest half marathons ever.  Excitement on a stick!!

The big half marathon, Deckers Creek Trail Half Marathon (6), for which I had been training so hard!!!  And it paid off with yet another new PR this year.

This was the month of races.  I started out with the Westerville Rotary 5K (7), which was kind of a disaster after having no power for most of the week and then my parents' house not having power.  Very little sleep and it was hotter than balls outside.  Whatever!  You can't PR every race.

Then the very next weekend I decided to do the Columbus Running Company's 1 Mile Run (8).  With all the speed workouts I had been doing I thought I would smash my PR.  Instead I got my pride smashed by husband who destroyed me in this race.  Little did I know there was something else that affected this race.

The last race of the month was the Giant Eagle Multisport Festival 10K (9), which I did great in with a new PR and 3rd place overall female.  Funny enough, I found out the next day I was pregnant.

August and September
With the new revelation that I was pregnant and feeling like crap during my first trimester, I didn't race. Heck, I didn't run much at all, but I was doing enough to keep off the extra pounds and just stay in shape.  I, obviously, missed my marathon I was training for which I was training so hard.  There will always be other marathons.

Now into my second trimester, I found running to be mostly enjoyable again, albeit slow.  Dave and I found a race last minute to do, the Celebrity Ghosts 5K (10), and although I was crazy slow, I really had fun.

Just a few days later I did another 5K, originally a 2 mile walk that my mom was supposed to do.  The Step Up for Stefanie 5K (11) netted me a new 5K PR - pregnancy record.

Now, I'm not one for gimmicky races, but the family wanted to do the Hot Chocolate 5K (12), so I signed up too.  I had fun and the loot was great.

In two days, on Thanksgiving, I will be doing the Flying Feather 4 Miler.  This will be the longest run I've done since I found out I was pregnant.  Race report coming on Friday.

Races get harder to come by around here when the weather gets colder.  I might have one more race up my sleeve if the price is right.

There you have it - 12+ races for this year.  Not bad considering I've been pregnant for half of this year.  I'm hoping to repeat this feat again in 2013, which will be even harder.  Who doesn't like a challenge, though?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Hot Chocolate 5K 2012

So, usually, I don't do gimmicky races.  However, (a) my dad wanted to do this, (b) the swag was good, and (c) I LOVE CHOCOLATE!!!

Pre-race swag.  All participants got a branded wind jacket.  

This race started early - 7:30am.  That's pretty early and cold for a November race.  However, the whole family had gone to bed early; earlier enough that my mom joined us as paparazzi.  (This was the first time using the iPhone camera.  Not quite in focus, but close enough.)  I'm now into my 20th week of pregnancy so the goal for today was to have fun.  Hence, the sock monkey hat.  Dave and Dad got to line up in the front in A corral.  I was in D corral, several minutes and several thousand people back. I was in the land of tutus, funny hats (myself included), and lots of little kids.  After a corral started, the next corral was held for two minutes and then started.  I was 6 minutes back of Dave and Dad plus whatever pace they were running before I even got to start.  I was seeded way too far back.  I fought to get around people the whole race.  But, I had a great race.  I ran every step including the uphills that I took super easy.  I waved; I smiled.  In the end I was just one second of my PR (pregnancy record) with a 32:35 (10:30 pace), which placed me 173 out of 580 in my age group.  Dave finished, I think, 9th in his age group and my dad won his age group.

Post race swag

All finishers got a giant mug that had chocolate fondue, a marshmallow, a couple of pretzels, mini chocolate candy bar, a rice crispy treat, banana, and a hot chocolate.  The hot chocolate, funny enough, was disgusting.  I took two sips and threw it away.  The rice crispy treat was absolutely divine dipped in the chocolate.  I had mine and Dad's.  They enjoyed the banana dunked in the chocolate.  Fun?  Yes.  Gimmicky?  Yes.  Do it again?  Probably.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Week in Review

Monday - 3 mile walk, treadmill.

Tuesday - 1200 yard swim - 4 X 300s.
Nothing ever changes when it comes to etiquette at the pool.  AKA, no one has any.  I got dressed, went out to the pool deck, and all the lanes were full.  So I waited.  As soon as the first person jumped out, I started to edge my way to that lane.  Just then an older woman came out of the locker room and walked straight to that lane without even taking a second glance.  I was totally ditched!  Being nice and not saying anything, I waited for another lane.  There was another older woman in a lane who was just kicking on the edge of the pool while talking to a friend.  I was pissed she was taking up a whole lane without even swimming.  I think she sensed my frustration and got out to go to the leisure side of the pool.  I started to edge my way to the lane, and then her friend to whom she was talking jumped in the lane.  WTF?  Does no one see me standing here?  Finally, a lane opened up (after waiting 15 minutes) and I got to get my swim done.

Wednesday - 3 miles, elliptical.
Dave and I went to the gym together tonight.  He ran on the treadmill.  I hit the elliptical.

Thursday - Off
This is the day that I was full of rage.  I just wanted to lay around, drink Kool Aid, and eat chocolate.

Friday - 3 mile run, outside.
How often do you get 50 degree days in November in Ohio?  I ran in shorts, a long-sleeved shirt, and gloves and had a great run.  It's so nice to still be able to do this.

Saturday - Off
I had intended to go to the Y for a swim, but open swim was only open 7:00-9:00 in the morning and Dave didn't get up until 9:00.  It's okay to have a rest day.

Sunday - Hot Chocolate 5K - 32:35.  Race report coming tomorrow!!

Run/Walk - 12.1 miles
Swim - 1200 yards

Saturday, November 17, 2012

What's in a name?

Now that we're on the downside of the pregnancy mountain, we're starting to get the question we've been dreading....have we picked out a name?  This is something Dave and I talk about almost daily.  And, we're really getting nowhere with it.

A couple of years ago I had picked out some names and I had come up with one I really liked.  I assumed that Dave liked it too and so recently I've begun to call the baby by it's name.  Then one day Dave said he wasn't so sure about it.  I was devastated.  I really had my heart set on this name.  To be fair, he felt like he wasn't part of the decision process and I totally get that.  Yet, he has come up with ZERO suggestions and has said, he doesn't like any names.  Awesome.

There's so much pressure riding on this name.  I think names can create the type of person that you'll become.  It's important to pick the name that's right for the child that will someday be an adult.  Personally, I have narrowed the names down to two and they couldn't be more different.

One is 100% Greek, which is hilarious because neither of us is Greek and if you've seen pictures of us or know us personally, you would know that Dave and I are mostly likely producing a blonde-haired, blue-eyed baby.  A Greek name might seem a little weird.  This name, I think, is free spirited.  I can see the kiddo liking art and music, be a wild child in sports, but maybe not care so much about the future and the important things.  The name might create a fiery personality, which would almost guarantee the child to be a lot like me.  This could be bad to have another one of me in the household.

The other name, my first love for names, is the complete opposite of the other.  It's a very formal name, where I could see the child being a bookworm, loving school, and eventually becoming a CEO.  I absolutely love this name for it's formality.  There's the rub, though.  I have a very formal name and have always gone by my formal name.  Because I grew up with this formal name, I have formed my own opinion that children who are given formal names should be called by their formal names.  If you want a child to go by Billy, name the child Billy!  Dave, of course, thinks I'm being silly because, well, his name is actually David and he goes by Dave.  His parents are the ONLY people who still call him David.  To me, Dave is the grown up version of David.  And he CHOSE to go by Dave when he was in high school.  So if I named my child a formal name, I would want that child to go by a formal name until he/she can decide for him/herself if he/she wants to go by another name.  Where am I going with this?  The formal name I really like can easily be turned into an informal name.  This is where, I believe, Dave is stuck and is dragging his feet.

I personally want to pick a name quickly so we can begin calling the baby by its name and get not only the baby but our dog adapted to hearing it.  Dave, on the other hand, wants to wait until he sees the baby.  I guess I get that, but I don't want to be those people who wait until a whole week to name the baby and for a week just call it baby.  What's that about?  We still have five months to go.  And I'm sure, hundreds more names to talk about.

Friday, November 16, 2012

20 Weeks - Half way there!!!

I might have borrowed these from Danielle.  :)

How far along? 20 weeks 

Total weight gain:
 I haven't had a doctor's appointment in two weeks so I don't know exactly, but the scale at the YMCA has me up 11 pounds since I found out I was pregnant.  For this far along in the pregnancy, I'll take it.

Maternity clothes? I own two pairs of jeans, two leggings, two shirts, and a winter coat.  I hate the jeans, but it's my only option for work.  I can still wear most of my tops from before I was pregnant.

Stretch marks? No, and I'm hoping to avoid them.  I'm using some cocoa butter on the areas I know could be stretching and keeping those areas well moist.  Ha!

Sleep: I'm sleeping about as normal as before I got pregnant.  I still get  up 2-3 times a night to go to the bathroom but that's about what it was before I got pregnant.  I don't remember the last time I slept all the way through a night.  I am going to bed earlier than I was before I got pregnant, but it's also helping Dave get more work done if I go to bed before him.

Best moment this week: Finding out that another close friend is pregnant!!!

Miss Anything? Alcohol.  What I wouldn't do for a margarita!  Also, I can't wait to run fast again.

Movement: All the time.  It's not painful as the baby is positioned all below my belly button.  Right now it's super cute.

Food cravings: Kool aid and chocolate, but that's pretty much all I ate before I was pregnant too.  :)

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope.

Gender: People sure don't like that we know and are not telling.  We love their theories on what the gender might be.  We've only heard one good theory and we were able to debunk that.

Labor Signs: Nope.  Let's keep it that way for at least another 19 weeks.

Symptoms: I don't know what this question means.  I have a big gut and I can feel the baby move.  What more symptoms do you need.

Belly Button in or out? Way far in.  I'm actually looking forward to it popping out so my stomach will stop looking like a butt.

Wedding rings on or off? I only recently started wearing a wedding band and it's very much on.  I'm only gaining weight in my belly and boobs, nowhere else.

Mood: I knew someone who was a complete bitch during her pregnancy so I'm trying to make a conscious effort to be in a good mood about the pregnancy.  One day this week, though, I had so much rage in my head that I worried what I might have said all day.  My job gets a lot more stressful through the holidays (I work in retail) so I'm trying to just stay relaxed.

Looking forward to: We're painting the baby's room this weekend and I'm looking forward to starting to get it set up.