Paying the Piper

10-31-13 AidanOctober 31 2013

Lightening Man.  A kid who literally has dozens of store-bought costumes had his mom create a unique super hero costume for Halloween.  No mom was consulted in the creation of Halloween.  All those moms gluing, sewing, and pinning.  (It reminds me of my mother making ballet costumes, but that’s another story.)

10-31-13 Addison and Keliegh

Accompanying Lightening Man this year were a ladybug and a chicken!  Could their eyes be any bluer?  It’s so interesting to hold the girls, now.  They both weigh over 10 pounds…up 6 pounds from birth.  And they’re bigger than your hand.  They are clearly still babies, but they’re rushing into the world at such a pace!

10-31-13 Paleo Soup

I spent today not eating things.  And eating enormous amounts of “clear” things.  I started Day Wellness’ Restoration Diet today.  Three weeks of eating a diet with foods to which people are not generally allergic.  Then adding allergens back into the diet and testing to see what you feel.  On the do not eat list:  dairy, eggs, gluten, tomatoes, corn, soy, peanuts, beef, nightshades.

On the eat list are most things I eat naturally, although the direction seems to be to cook more than eat raw.  (Left on my own, at least 50% of my diet is raw.)

Unfortunately/fortunately, because I new this day was coming, I have been eating gluten and sugar almost non-stop for the last 10 days.  I am having sugar withdrawals today of major significance.  I eventually ate some dates, nuts, and almond butter in an attempt to shut down the cravings.  Although not refined white sugar, one of those three things did the trick — or maybe all of them.

Last night I put a chicken in the crock pot and cooked overnight.  This morning I divided the stock and chicken into three, put one back in the crock pot and the other two portions in the fridge.  I added a box of mushroom stock, a bag of baby carrots, a hunk of kale, 2 cups of previously roasted potatoes, and a cup of cooked rice.  I cooked that all day, and ate that all day.

I’m off to bed before anything else calls my name from the kitchen.



From the Halls of Montzuma…

IMG_272629 October 2013

Here’s another gushy post.  I spent a weekend running, drinking, eating gluten, and surrounded by people I adore.

Last Thursday I flew to Washington D.C. for the Marine Corps Marathon.  A race that I was registered for, but not planning to run — having not done anything of a physical nature, other than walking around — for at least three weeks due to the Aidan/Princess illness.  I also had been on restricted training for nearly two months due to the inflammed bursa.  When I had to let go of the Berlin goal, I also mostly let got of the Marine Corps Marathon goal.  Other than being a Sole Runners destination marathon, the race, itself, wasn’t particularly important to me.

IMG_2464 I arrived in Washington DC on Thursday night, met up with Kerry, Kathleen, Steve, and Dora and we all went to dinner at an Italian place in Georgetown.  I had salmon (I think…it was days ago).

IMG_2471On Friday morning, after a breakfast in the hotel (I love rambling, long breakfasts with LOTS of coffee), several people took the Metro over to the Armory


and attended the Expo…picking up our Bibs and buying stuff we probably don’t need.


I found Kelly Rogers and we ended up buying matching bags made out of last year’s finish line bunting.

IMG_2488IMG_2491Kelly had her picture taken with the MCM mascott, a bulldog that looks like a bear.  Steve had his picture taken with the Fasang family.

On Friday evening, Coach Steve was invited to speak at the First Timers Pep Rally,  A special meeting for first time marathoners.  What a great idea.  A race making a big deal out of people who trained specially for it.  Good way to build brand loyalty.  It was a goofy evening, but Coach was introduced along side Jeff Galloway as one of 12 nationally recognized marathon coaches.  Pretty cool.


We returned to the hotel for the Welcome Party with the Sole Runners…Hector arrived about 12:45 AM…Russ didn’t arrive until after 2 AM and I was long gone by then.


I drank 3 blueberry mojitos, which apparently had no alcohol in them at all, because I was still walking upright at the end of the evening.  When the party moved to the roof (in weather too cold for me to contemplate being outside — some of the Sole Runners were up until after 3 AM)…my wonder room mate, Monica, and I left for the warmer confines of bed…talking until I have no idea when…then she fell asleep and I lay awake for at least two more hours wondering what I’d eaten during the day that had caffeine in it.


We all had a stinkin’ fun weekend with Monica.  Who I’d definitely marry if she was not already married, and didn’t live in far away, and didn’t run 20,000 miles a week– well, OK, we’re not the perfect forever match — but she is about as much fun as you can have….and there is that watermelon connection.  (Note the two fist-ed drinking about to get underway in the picture.)

Saturday was breakfast at the hotel, then off to the subway and a beadstore (that was completely underwhelming).  I did manage to find something for Maggie Richie, however.


Saturday night was the Carbo load dinner with our Greek and Berlin friend, Abby.


After which we went off to get ready for races.  It’s hard to know how much to wear…

10-26-13 Lay-Out

We met in the lobby at 6 AM to head off to the start line of the Marine Corps Marathon


I had to leave a little earlier than the Marathon group, which was walking over to the start line.  I took the Metro to the Washington Mall for the start of the 10k race.  What I had decided to do was run the 10K and then walk the last 7 miles of the marathon.  The sun was just coming up as I was standing in the porta potty line.


This would be my first run in nearly 2 months.  I decided early on that I would run 3 miles and then walk.  But at 3 miles I was feeling pretty good, so I kept running.  At mile 4 it became obvious I was not running fast enough to walk and make the cut-off (1:39 – I have no idea why), so I’d have to keep running.  I ran the entire 6 miles, as my first outing after the injury.  The top of my feet hurt and I have shin splints.  Of interest to me was the fact that I did not cough while running.  Very interesting.  The last .05 miles is significantly up hill — up a steep hill – to the Iwo Jima memorial.


The 10K and the marathon finished in exactly the same space, so they needed those 10K-ers moving along to make way for the fast marathoners.

On the Marathon Course, just past the water station at Mile 19 was the world-famous Sole Runners Aide station staffed by Aide Station Sue, Abby, and Kerry.  Abby went to Greece and Berlin with us and is THE reason we picked the MCM for this race — and then of course she got injured and couldn’t participate.  (But she’s on board for France.)  Sue created the destination aide station in Vancouver, managed the aide station in Berlin, and was the ASS (Aide Station Sue) for DC.  (We gotta think of another acronym for Sue.)  This is at least Kerry’s second aide station for the Sole Runners – having served admirably in Berlin and now in DC.

10-27-13 Abby Kerry Sue

I finished up, wandered back to the hotel, and took a epson salts bath.

10-27-13 feet in bath

In the early evening we met for drinks and pizza…


later some of us went for Greek “tapas” with Abby.

The weather was very cold Friday morning, cold on Saturday morning, but luckily not as bitterly cold on Sunday morning.  The route was very difficult, I thought.  But the support on the course.  A huge number of people reached out and touched me and said “you’re doing a good job” or something else encouraging, as I walked along.  I liked the official race jacket, but as I wasn’t running the entire 26 mile course, I didn’t spend $85 on the jacket.  The food box at the end of the race, although nice in presentation, wasn’t early as well thought out as a Disney race box.  There was a very large – many blocks – post race festival, but it was too cold in the shade, a great many of the displays were uphill, and there were a ton of people.  The 10k medal was nice, for a 10K.  The marathon medal was the same shape as last year, but the gun medal gray color and black ribbon made the whole thing too dark, in my estimation.

Monday morning we were up for breakfast, then Mirella took me with her to the Capitol, where we got a free tour.  Did you know that virtually all the public tours and places (such as museums) are free?  Very tourist-friendly town.  We went to the Air and Space museum – supposedly the most visited museum in the world (all those 10-year-old boys).  We had lunch at the Native American Museum.


Finally it was off to the airport and a flight home


Today i had a massage and I’m still stiff and sore, but my feet and legs aren’t so swollen.  Tomorrow, I’m back on the food wagon and off gluten.

I had an amazing weekend, surrounded by people I adore, eating, drinking, and riding subways.  I totally get and appreciate the generosity of the Universe.

Who in the hell runs 13 miles?

IMG_0621[1]Monday, 14 October 2013

I am registered for a marathon in 2 weeks that I am not going to be able to run.  Even though my inflamed bursa is MUCH better and I will soon be able to run again, I cannot run 26 miles in the next 10 days.  So I am coming to the end of my athletic year at a limp.  And I’ve been thinking about what’s next.

I started out this year with two goals…easier and lighter.  Easier – especially at the half marathon distance – which to me carried the sub-text of faster.  Lighter because I would need to weigh less to make “easier” happen.  In June I was well on my way to the weight goal and I was running faster than ever before.

Note to Self:  If you’ve clearly achieved the goal (and a doctor pointed out to me that I was already faster and lighter before I even recognized it) — SET NEW GOALS.

But the doc was wrong in part.  The half marathon distance wasn’t easier.  I was faster and lighter.  But easier is something different.

At the Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon in San Diego I PR-ed — even while “wasting” at least 7 minutes along the way (and maybe more).  Those wasted minute were because the distance wasn’t easier.

And then after the R&R I lost focus.  I didn’t stretch into the hard training that took me to a new PR in 2012.  I didn’t run 2 hours every Wednesday, which is hard to do and wonderful when done.  My runs with the coach didn’t stretch longer.  My strength training wasn’t as challenging (I was recovering from an injured shoulder).  A lot of stuff didn’t happen.  I did races that were to have provided progress markers, but I didn’t PR those races.  I didn’t focus on the harder every-day training.  And, I did a marathon in August that was an absolute waste of time.  Second Note to Self:  If you’re going to do a marathon (and this is no reflection on the people or organizers of the Santa Rosa Marathon), it had better be a race you are interested in running.

And then the butt.  My severe bursitis is, I believe, a message from the Universe that “you cannot run that much at that weight”.  (“And if you don’t believe us, we’ll make every single step feel like an ice pick is stabbing you.”)  The prescription for the bursa was “rest”.  And nothing else.

In an attempt to keep my cardio base, I was walking briskly, swimming, and spinning.  And then I got sick.  I’ve blamed the kindergarteners at Naples Elementary School.  But I really think this was a (backhanded) gift from the Universe.  I wasn’t resting.  And for the last two weeks I have been doing nothing.  Walking around the house.  Sitting.  Sleeping.  Sleeping.  Sleeping.  Nothing even resembling physical activity.  (OK, for 2 days in a row I worked 15+ hours a day lifting barges and toting bales.   But today I’m resting, again.)

I was going to start swimming again this evening (third note to self…getting into the pool in the cold dark of night is like getting to el dorado in the summer to run…once you’re off, you’re off…but getting out of the car is hell).  But I was wheezy after the last equipment pick-up, and I still had to unload in my garage.  So instead I’m home.  Writing.


On the mantle above the fireplace I have framed posters of every marathon that I’ve run and the medal from that marathon hanging on the corner of the frame.  Today I took down most posters and put all the medals away…except two.

In 2008 I ran my first 1/2 marathon.  It wasn’t a bucket list item (who says their life’s goal is to run a 1/2 marathon).  But it was the most enormous challenge I could imagine.  The moment it was done — even before I could move my knees again — I knew I could do a full — but I’d need help.  The help came via Sole Runners.  And in 2010 I ran a marathon.  I should be wearing the medal as I write this.  A very important “finish” for me.

(Worthwhile digression:   Once I was reading a list of peoples’ bucklist goals. One guy’s list was (1) sit in the front row of a Jimmy Buffett concert, (2) run a marathon and (3) climb a mountain.  I said to whom ever I was sitting next to, “Look, I’m living this guy’s perfect existence.”)

Two years later in 2012, I set a new goal, and came damn close at the Berlin Marathon.

But in the end, my accomplishments for 2013 will be a bunch of virtually meaningless races — before, during, and after which I had great fun and was totally happy most of the time.  Probably not a bad state of existence.


And knowing three blue-eyed babies.  (Even if they did, together, conspire in the Universe’s back-handed gift.)

Thinking about Goals:  I want to train at the marathon distance because I want to do the Sole Runners’ destination marathon each year.  (We try and find races with multiple distances, but it’s not all that common.)  Earlier this year I was thinking that my next gigantic goal will be to run a sub-5 hour marathon.   But I’m not sure that’s necessary.  A reliable 6:00, or even better 5:50, marathon is fine.  (And I haven’t done that, yet, so it’s a goal, too.)

Today I’m thinking that I want to focus, again, on Easier (at the 1/2 marathon distance).  And Lighter.  (More on lighter in a second.)  I’m thinking I want to run a 2:30 half marathon.  That’s a 22 minute improvement.  It means running at an 11:26 pace for 13 miles — probably a minute faster than I could possibly to today.  But a good goal.

And this Friday I’m starting into the Restoration Diet, lead by Dr. Michael Day, made famous by Carlos Romero.  Friday we go shopping at Trader Joes so that we’ll have food on hand to start the diet with on Day 1.  The kick-off meeting is Wednesday, October 23rd.  I’m immediately going on the road, so my goal is to do my best, and trail a week behind the rest of the class.

10-13-13 LeAnn & Michele Crop

This is my second favorite picture of the marathon.  Because everyone loves Michele.

This is my favorite pictures from the marathon.  It’s ‘way deep in the day (many, many beers).  It is totally Buzz Lightyear and Woody.  ‘Into Infinity.  And Beyond!’

Slip Slidin’ Away

Slip Slidin’ Away

IMG_0614[1]Saturday, 5 October 2013

Life is full of little treasures sliding away…whether intended or not.  This is a picture of one.  The little bead on this earring is a piece of Stuben glass, made by the art glass division of Corning glass in Corning NY.  I worked there for about 2 years a long time ago — not in NY, but at a brand new campus in California, that disappeared in the telecom crash.  Anyway, on a business trip to the home office, I went to the Stuben glass factory and museum and bought a pair of earrings that had these little pieces of Stuben glass.  That was about 2000.  I’ve had these little pieces of glass for over 13 years — I used to wear the earrings all the time — but then the earrings broke, then I just had the pieces of glass.  But I managed to hang onto the glass for years.   Earlier this week I took those two little pieces of (expensive) glass and made a new pair of earrings — that I liked very much.  I stuck them right in my ears and started wearing them.  And within the week, one was lost.  I have been in probably 32 different places with drains — swimming pool drain, shower drain in the gym, drain in my shower.  The likelihood of getting the matching piece of glass back is pretty slim — but I will ask this week through my travels.

But I think it’s significant because even tho’ I took good care of the glass for a LONG time, and was making the correct and good use of it at the time of loss, it still wandered out of my life.  Like some people and a host of things.

Today was the last “regular” day of the summer season.  I love these concluding days.  I like them best when I’m in the thick of things and looking immediately forward to the coming big race.  Right now I’m obviously not even much in the thin of things.  (Yes, I do amuse myself.)  But it was a beautiful day — very windy Santa Anas, and warm.

This picture is a lie in about 13 different ways.  (1) I have a deal with Nancy that she tells me before she takes a pic of me, so I can stuck in my stomach.  (2)  I have residual Aidan/Princess sickness and am not anywhere near as perky as this picture would imply.  (3)  I hardly ever have such a goofy grin (unless I’m looking at Wilk kids).  On the other hand, it is a pretty good pic, so who cares.

This week I looked into running the Marine Corps 10K, rather than the full marathon.  Actually, I was considering walking the 10K…but it’s not a meander.  It’s  has a time limit (of 90 minutes), which is really faster than I can walk.  So either I’ll feel good enough to trot in two weeks — and will be able to transfer.  Or not.  Today I feel so much better it makes me wonder about doing the full.  However, hopefully it’s only temporary insanity.

So, I’ve been sick.  Sicker than I probably really know (I do not have a temperature this afternoon).  I have not been swimming.  I have been going to bed and going to sleep at impossibly (embarrassingly) early hours — like one night this week I got into bed at 8:30 and went to sleep and slept until the alarm went off the next day at 7.  My swimming gear is in my truck, ready to go at a moment’s notice (and I keep going home and going to bed).  A week ago Friday, the Wilk Princesses had snotty noses.  (I thought nothing of it.)  Wednesday of this week I woke up in the middle of the night with a sore throat (bad enough that I got up and took a zinc lozenge).  Thursday I woke up with a phlegm-y cough.  Friday — and today in particular, that cough is really deep.  I feel better than I sound, but I sound really bad and I feel just puny.  (And, my hair is dirty.)

More on hair.  When you’re working out regularly, you know when you’re going to shower and stuff.  Now that I’m out of cycle, I’m out of practice doing that morning shower, get-ready thing.  Waiting to shower after the workout (which for me is the afternoon) could mean waiting a LONG time.  I gotta go wash my hair.

Good news.  I saw Allen Arnette yesterday and he confirmed that others have said — that bursitis heals completely with rest.  It’s not chronic.  And the reason it sounds like something your grandma in Iowa would have is because in the past only old women lived long enough to experience the wear in the hip joint to inflame a bursa.  When Arnette was in school, he was taught there were 5 bursa in the body — and now there are 30 known.  He challenged me to test the recupteration of the bursa by doing the one that that used to bother it — moving from plank into down dog.  I tried it today – no pain.  If this experience fixes this two-year-plus issues, it’s worth the trouble and loss.

And it has been a cleanse week, which is always a challenge.  This week I’ve progressed from salads with tofu, to salads with seeds, to a 2-day juice fast.  In the morning I’ve been drinking a liver cleanse — 1 apple, 1 orange, 1 lemon, ginger, cayenne, olive oil, safflower oil, and garlic.  The oil increases from 1 teaspoon the 2 Tablespoons – of each.  It is surprizingly not terrible — but by Friday the garlic breath is pretty overwhelming.


Speaking of garlic breath.  This is the kind of toothpaste I’ve been using and the dispenser/tube that I like the best.  It stands up where ever.  A long, long time ago I bought a case of these off of amazon — 24 tubes, I think.  And this is the last one.  I need more toothpaste.  Turns out they still make this container.  It costs $4.69 at Walgreen’s.


This container, which by the way contains .6 oz product, costs $2.99.  It is possible I paid nearly $2/ea for the convenience of a stand-up tube. Gads, I hope not.  At least in the near term, I’ll be using the regular tubes.