Author Archives: Paula

About Paula

I'm a working wife and mother that loves to earn race bling, with a goal of running a half-marathon in each of the 50 states.

Week 6 of 16 Recap — August 7 through August 13

Ohhh, I’m so late with this.  I thought about foregoing this past week’s update, but I’m keeping track for myself, for future reference… you know, 1st marathon vs 5th marathon kind of thing… hahaha, yeah right.  In brief, this inadvertently became a step-back week for me.  I was tired and needed some rest, so I cut the mileage down.

Monday:  Nada.

Tuesday:  3 miles PLUS swimming!  Yeah baby, you read that right.  A morning and evening workout.  It has been years since I swam laps… amazing workout for the heart and lungs.  It’ll be interesting to see if my upper body gets some tone from it; however, I know for a fact I got a helluva workout.  This is a competition pool, so it’s kept cooler than others, and I was hot when I got out; it probably took me an hour to cool down completely.  Hence, bloody good workout.

Wednesday:  4 miles.

Thursday: Cross train with more swimming.  I’m starting to appreciate my Garmin Vivoactive a bit more… it measures the distance I swim.  New stats to analyze.  Fun stuff for this numbers geek.

Friday:  3 miles.

I’m thinking these poor leaves died from thirst, NOT signs of an early fall.

Saturday:  Rest day.  Nailed it.

Sunday:  7 miles.  Back to Green Lake in Seattle we went.  It was misty/sprinkly/rainy while we were going round and round, but oh how I welcomed feeling the rain on my face.  It had been 55 days of no rain, and we desperately needed it.

The 7 miles was so far my longest run in my new Hoka’s.  Can’t begin to tell you how much I just adore those shoes.  I love them so much that I ordered another pair so I can run in them for both my long and short runs.  You fly, I tell ya, just fly!

Weekly Total:  17 miles/27.4 km

Total Plan Mileage So Far:  131 miles/210.8 km

  • 25 days until Seattle Craft Classic Half Marathon.
  • 37 days until North County Wine Run Half Marathon.
  • 67 days until Marine Corps Marathon.
  • 109 days until Rock ‘N’ Roll San Antonio Half Marathon. Do you see that?  Texas!!  I’ll soon get a big color block on my 50-state map!
  • 131 days until Christmas.

Coming Up

We are headed to Whistler, BC, this weekend for a nice little getaway before school starts up again for AJ.  We have all sorts of fun stuff planned… hiking, bear watching, swimming, biking, horseback riding for me and AJ, gondola flying… but first thing’s first… a 17-mile run when I wake up there on Friday morning.  Nope, I’m not even going to think about it…

Have a great rest of the week!

Week 5 of 16 Recap — July 31 through August 6

British Columbia is on fire right now… literally… and the smoke has made its way down to Seattle and across Washington state.  God bless all those firefighters and everyone affected. The fires have made air quality very poor here, so training this past week had to be done indoors.  Sunday the wind picked up and started to move some of it out, so we managed a nice long run outdoors.

Monday:  3 miles.

A picture of Meeps… because treadmills are borrring.

Tuesday:  4 miles.  The boys finally came home from their trip to Idaho.  So endeth my girl time.

Wednesday:  Cross train.  (yeah, right… the boys just got home)

Thursday: 4 miles.  Is anyone catching that my mileage is a bit lower than it should be?  I hate the treadmill.  Not a good excuse, but the truth nonetheless.

Friday:  3 miles.  By now I was so sick of the treadmill, I really didn’t care.  Okay… bad attitude. Whatever.

I know of a lady who runs 14 miles on the treadmill every other day… no more, no less… every, other, day.  Never outside.  Treadmill only.  It blows my mind.

Saturday:  Rest day.

Sunday:  12 miles.  This was a great day out.  James and I headed south to Green Lake in Seattle to run laps around the lake.  It was fabulous.

It’s about a 3-mile loop, tons of people, and mostly flat.  Lots and lots of normal potties… a runner’s dream (actually, this runner’s dream).

I love my geese.

Weekly Total:  26 miles/41.84 km

Total Plan Mileage So Far:  114 miles/183.5 km

Bonus Notes!

The lake we were running around, Green Lake, just so happens to be within walking distance to Road Runner Sports, a fabulous store that specializes in running shoes.  My Brooks Glycerin 14’s are kind of past their sell-by date, having carried me through practically every race in 2016 (well, 8 of the 9 races), not to mention I ran my last half-marathon in June in them… so, yeah, well past their sell-by date.

My Brooks Glycerin… the 2nd pair I’ve retired since I started blogging.

Anyway, after we were finished with our runs, we made our way over to the shoe store, and guess what?!  Yes!!  New shoes!!  I have stepped outside my comfort zone of Brooks (tried and true) to the Hoka One One Clifton!  I tried them out on the treadmill at Road Runner and it was like running on air!  I’m absolutely thrilled and can’t wait to hit the trail in them.  Thank you, Donna, for helping me to realize it was time!

Hoka One One Cliftons

76 more days until Marine Corps, may the Good Lord have mercy on my soul.

Have a great week ya’all!

Week 4 of 16 Recap — July 24 through 30

I cannot believe another week of training has passed.  When is this shite going to get easier? Here’s the breakdown:

Monday:  Nada, zip, nothing.  I wrote last week’s summary on Monday night instead.  Yes, I could have gotten up early to complete my 3 miles, but I’m using the excuse of the concert and that the late night made me tired (#truth).  Excuses are lame.  You play, you pay.  Suck it up and do it anyway. But I didn’t.  (Now, how many conversations do you think I have with myself during the day?)

Tuesday:  5 miles.  I think I need to start writing out my thoughts on a daily basis as my runs are starting to blend together.  I cannot remember for the life of me if this was a good run or if it sucked, but I think I got up early for it.  Which means it was probably a really good run as I do my best in the morning.  A shame I can’t start my job later.

Strange plant. It thinks it’s fall.

Wednesday:  5 miles.  I think this one was done in the evening.  I ran 2 on the treadmill while it was cooling off, and then 3 outside once I knew the temperature wasn’t going to down me. Ah-ha!  The memory is starting to come back.

Thursday:  This was a cross-train day.  However, the boys were leaving for a road trip; I went into work early so I could leave in time to say goodbye to them.  And then it was girl’s time… ohhh yeahhhh.

There are some things only a GIF can explain.

Friday: 5 miles.  You bet, why not.  As the boys were gone, I had nothing else happening. Can I get an awwwww… poor thing?!  I’m joking of course.  The short runs are important and aren’t to be missed.  So I say today.  But I still had happy hour!

Saturday:  Rest day. And total movie day!!  I got to watch three (3) chick flicks without being interrupted!  Do I know how to live or what?!!

Sunday:  11 miles.  Once again, the weather cooperated with me.  I’m feeling quite blessed on my Sunday long-run days!  It was overcast and cool, with a slight breeze.  I was supposed to do 12, but I missed a calculation, or something, and came up short a mile.  By then I was at my front door and I was in no mood to go out and get another mile.  I was done.

I am starting to freak out about the mileage climbing up into territory I’ve never done before. That is detrimental to one’s mental game, so instead of listening to my normal music, I downloaded a couple of podcasts.  I had to get out of my head, and listening to someone else talk was the best way to do it.  It worked, but I wasn’t too keen on the podcasts I downloaded.  I need something funny to keep me smiling… so the hunt is on to find something good before my very first 14-miler this coming Sunday.

(Son of a gun… I just realized I have a half-marathon in 41 days that I need to PR, then another one 2 weeks later, sandwiched by two 20-milers.  Wow.  The nerves are really coming at me hard.  Insert panic here.)

Weekly Total:  26 miles/41.84 km

Total Mileage So Far:  88 miles/141.6 km

Total Miles for July:  91 miles/146.5 km

As I said, the boys took a road trip.  They went to Boise to visit Grandpa for a long weekend.  I couldn’t go because, well, squirrel!  Yes, squirrel apocalypse has begun early and all the rescue centers are battening down the hatches and preparing for our upcoming guests.  I wrote about it last year here, even kept track of how many we were admitting but gave up around 100. Anyway, more on that later, I’m sure.  (For my new followers … I hate the word followers… for my new blogging friends, I work at a wildlife rescue and rehab center.)

Anyway… I really just wanted to share a couple of pictures of the boys having a good time.  Stay tuned to James’s site, 50 in 50 Marathon Quest, as I’m sure he’s going to write a nice little report about a killer trail run he went on while there.  If I would have been with them, I would have turned around and ran back to the truck and waited.  With the A/C on.  I don’t run on trails that are only 6 inches wide and full of boulders.

Have a great week!

Everything Happens For A Reason

I do not believe in coincidence.  I do believe that everything happens for a reason.

I was raised to be spiritual, to love God, to trust in God’s will, to believe that no matter what everything works out in the end.  Through the years, particularly when I was a young adult, I had my doubts.  I’m a “black-and-white, no gray area” type of person, so I started to doubt the concept of God and went with the scientific explanation of the universe.  That didn’t work well for me.  My life went to hell in a hand basket.  I then started to strengthen my spirituality, and my life started coming together.  I continue to strengthen my spirituality and accept there are things that are not meant to be explained or understood.

Therefore, I do not believe in coincidence.  Everything happens for a reason, even if it is not specifically clear at any given time.

My brother Kris died a little over 1-1/2 years ago from bone and lung cancer at the age of 57.  From the time he was diagnosed to the time he died was just 3 weeks.  They tried radiation and one dose of chemotherapy which he could not tolerate.  They then put him on hospice and sent him home with his wife.

January 2015… on his way to Maui.

He never told me he was ill.  He knew he was going to die, and he never said goodbye.  And I was angry.  Very angry.  Regardless, I ran my next half-marathon less than 2 months later in his memory.  It was my goodbye to him… I was running Maui, his most favorite place in the world (…everything happens for a reason.  I do not believe it was coincidence that my first race after his death happened to be in Maui.).

However, sometime soon after Kris died, I discovered Terry from Spearfruit (everything happens for a reason).  Terry was having his own battle with cancer, and still is, fighting every day for his life.  Terry recently wrote a post, I Will See Her Again, about a recent visit with his mom, sister, and brother.  Because of this heartfelt post, I now understand why my brother never said anything.

My brother didn’t “do” emotions.  He expressed love and occasionally anger or frustration, but he never showed grief or sadness.  Outwardly anyway.  He despised any type of drama.  He accepted the way things were and moved past it.

It took me a year and a half, and finally Terry’s post, to realize my brother couldn’t deal with the emotions that would have come with saying goodbye to the people he loved.  He had enough to process in dealing with his own mortality, and the emotions of having to say goodbye were just too much for him to handle in the short time he had left.

Taken a couple of days before he died, November 2015.

Terry… thank you for sharing your journey with us.  You may never know everyone you’ve helped during your fight, but I am sure there are many.  I appreciate you.

Rest in peace, bro… I finally get it.

Week 3 of 16 Recap — July 17 through 23

The recap part of this post will be short and sweet.  Lather, rinse, repeat as they say.

Monday:  3 miles.  The day after my long run.  This is probably not the day I should take on Mo-Fo Hill, but I did.  I’m enjoying seeing my progress and how much easier it’s getting week by week to go up this hill.  I’m no longer needing 10 minutes to catch my breath once I get to the top (only 9 minutes now, lol).

Tuesday:  5 miles.  If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen the picture already.  It was a gorgeous, early morning run by the lake.  I usually fight getting up so early, but I’m always so happy when I do.

Wednesday:  I rested.  Yep, I said it… I rested. I was supposed to cross train, but I didn’t.  I’m not proud of it, but life happens.

Thursday:  I rested again.  I was supposed to run 5 miles, but I missed my early morning and it was so nasty hot in the evening.

Friday:  3 miles.  Again, I couldn’t get up as early as I wanted, so that only left me enough time to tackle 3.  I was going to finish it off with 2 in the afternoon, but, well… we all know how that goes, don’t we.

Saturday:  Rest day.

Sunday:  10 miles. You know you live in a small town when running from one end to the other is only 5 miles.  I had to make up the difference with an out and back on the trail.  A beautiful run, so cool, so overcast.  I live in the Pacific Northwest for the clouds, people, not the sun, hehe.

Weekly Total:  21 miles/34 km (Shameful… I must do better this coming week.  Respect the distance.)

Total Mileage So Far:  62 miles/99 km

But wait!

There’s more!

Sunday night we went to see 2 Cellos play at Chateau Ste Michelle Winery in Woodinville.  It was thanks to Motivational Music Monday and the lovely Dorothea from Wanderwolf Running who introduced us to these fun musicians.

In case you don’t know who they are, they are two classically trained cellists from Croatia who took the world by storm with their rendition of Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal.”  They play everything from Vivaldi to AC/DC, not to mention a little Iron Maiden and some Nirvana.

An amazing time.  The child even enjoyed it.  (Side note here… AJ has asked to go see Bon Jovi if and/or when they come back to Seattle… I’m so proud!!)

Not my photo. I totally pilfered it from 2 Cellos Instagram site. Can you see us? We’re the ones waving our arms!

And just in case you’re interested… here is a link to them playing Smooth Criminal, Thunderstruck by AC/DC, and Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana.  I’m telling ya, they really rock.

Have a great week!

BibRave Pro!

I have a fun announcement!  I’ve been selected to be a BibRave ambassador, otherwise known as a BibRave Pro!

What is BibRave?  BibRave is a website that provides a community forum for runners to research and review races.  Anyone can submit a race review and there are no fees to use the service.  There is already a great online community and a weekly twitter chat, #bibchat, hosted each Tuesday at 6pm PST.

What is a BibRave Pro?  BibRave Pros are run bloggers who help spread the word about BibRave and BibRave-partnered races and brands.

What does this mean?  It basically means I’ll be reviewing races and products right here on my blog and continue to write race reviews on BibRave.

I’ve updated my website to include some discount codes.  If you’re interested in a race discount code, such as any Rock N Roll or Hot Chocolate race, you can visit my Race Discounts tab, and for gear and product discounts, visit my Gear Discounts tab.  These discounts are for runners and non-runners alike!

If you’d like more information on BibRave, you can visit http://www.bibrave.com.

I’m super excited to be doing this!  Wish me luck!!  You may be seeing a lot of orange in my near future!!

 

Week 2 of 16 Recap — July 10 through 16

Week 2 of marathon training didn’t go nearly as well as week 1.

Monday:  3 miles.  After long-run Sunday, we decided it would be best if I had some nice active recovery.  So moving forward, Monday will now consist of an easy-going run where speed or pace doesn’t matter, just to loosen up the legs from the previous day.

The only problem was I couldn’t get up early to do this, so I ran in the evening.  On top of that, I took an allergy pill as something started to tickle my nose.  Because of this, there was probably no getting up early on Tuesday morning to beat the heat…

Tuesday:  2 miles.  It was supposed to be 5.  I did manage to get up early; however, because I had taken an allergy pill the night before, I couldn’t get it going.  My legs felt like lead and my heart rate was erratic, as was my breathing.  (#BenadrylHangover)  I called the run at 2.

Wednesday:  5 miles.  I redeemed myself.  I finally got over the Benadryl hangover and was able to pull it out, but I did this late in the evening when it had cooled down.  I’m so thankful for long days of light right now.

At work, we got in a poor little domestic white rock dove.  He had been attacked by crows.  He had probably been released during someone’s wedding and couldn’t find his way back home. Because he was domesticated, he got to hang out with me all day and get out of the clinic.  He perched happily on my shoulder while I worked, even slept there a bit.  He should be okay as long as the stress of being in a hospital doesn’t get to him.

Thursday:  Cross trained.  I didn’t feel like doing much more than walking, so I practiced my speed walking for 2 miles.  Cross training doesn’t count towards plan mileage, but hey, 2 miles is 2 miles.  More time on my feet.

This was also “Take Your Kids To Work Day” at Starbucks.  AJ got to go hang out with James at Starbucks Headquarters, for which they had lots of fun activities planned for all the kids.  AJ was super excited about getting to make his own Frappucino… any flavor or ingredient he wanted to add, he did.  He even got his own special green Starbucks apron.

Friday:  4 miles.  Again, I couldn’t get up early, so this had to be done on a hot afternoon on the treadmill.  I earned my happy hour, lol.

Saturday:  Rest day.

Sunday:  8 miles.  I was supposed to do 9, but I took an S-cap (electrolytes) at mile 5 and then ate a date at mile 6, and by mile 7, my stomach was cramping up.  It sucks to have a sensitive stomach.  Regardless, it was a beautiful day to be out… nice and overcast and cool!

Weekly Total:  22 miles/35.4 km

Total Mileage So Far:  41 miles/66 km

So tell me:

  • Are you training for race?  If so, which one? (Shout it out loud and proud!!)
  • Are you on Instagram?  If you are, reach out and say “hi!”  I’m finally starting to figure out this fun little app (I know, I know, but I’m old, what can I say), and I’ve gotten to know quite a few blogger friends better by following them on Instagram, so I’d love to follow you if I’m not already!  You can find me here.
  • Who’s your favorite internet provider?

Hope all ya’all have a super great week!