Tuesday, August 28, 2012

C25K - week 9

Ran around Green Lake this morning -- my second time running the NHS "Couch to 5K" podcast -- 30 minutes straight. I felt a little sluggish -- and a little queasy... but I'm guessing that's because I had already drunk 16 ounces of kale / banana / peach / pineapple smoothie!

I got up with Wil, made the aforementioned smoothies, and finished packing up my things. And then I just milled around. I played with the cats a little, I looked at my email. I just couldn't seem to head out the door. I don't even know why.

And at about 7:45 I realized I should probably just have a quick shower and drive to work. I kept thinking of when I might be able to squeeze in a run ... After work? Nah, that never works for me. During lunch? Hate that. And then I realized that a lot of my coworkers fit in runs during the work day. So I decided I would "fit in" my run at the beginning of my work day.

I drove to Green Lake, enjoyed my run, and then drove to work -- arriving at the locker room at 9:10. Then I got to my desk at 9:30. Too late for the morning meeting (which I actually thought had been cancelled, but that's next week...) but just in time to get some good work done.

I covered 4.02 miles in 40 minutes -- ten minutes of which was my warm-up and cool-down walking. So I feel pretty good about my speed, even if I was feeling sluggish and tired. Now, that's not fast by any means, but faster than I have been in the past. It's made me start looking for a 5K I can run to see if I can PR. (Yep, that's one of my stretch goals!) The mileage also brought me within 3.5 miles of my goal for August -- which I should be able to complete on Thursday. Woot!

Oh, and in very late news ... a couple of weeks ago Disney published the design for the Walt Disney World Marathon medal. Now, I usually don't like to see the medals until I have earned them -- I like it to be a surprise. And I'm not 100% sure I like this medal -- especially since it seems completely unrelated to the Donald WDW Half Marathon medal. But some people will love it:

I just really, really hope that the Goofy medal is an old-school Goofy-head medal. Would be nice to complete that "set"!

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Spent two days this week in Anacortes, working on a photo shoot to showcase our Fall 12 collection. But it wasn't all work -- I also managed to have a gorgeous run. But I'm getting ahead of myself a little.

Went to a kick-ass workout on Wednesday morning with Kerry at boot camp. How she manages to keep it fresh and fierce week after week I don't know. Then home for a quick shower, and then the drive up to Anacortes. No traffic to speak of, so I arrived a tiny bit early -- and got to meet the neighbors:

Asa and friend

Tanner the donkey
Also met Mustafa, the photographer, his wife Rosemary, and Rian the stylist. Soon after, Simon, our model for day one, arrived. We got set up and started shooting. We only had eight looks to capture on day one. The team was great -- everything went absurdly smoothly. We had a leisurely lunch on the patio in the sunshine and watched some barn swallows fledge -- Mustafa looked like a very proud papa watching the babies fly!

I always have this idea that I'll get loads of work done on a shoot -- I'll have all this quiet time to get little things done in-between shots. Nope. There's always lots to do! And, as I used to remind myself in my TMO days, we were paying a lot of money for the photo shoot, so it's important for me to focus my attention on getting great shots.

Of course, it's not glamorous. There's a lot of standing around and wondering if jackets should be zipped or open, how the model should place his feet, his hands, etc. Here's what it looks like when we're working:

Mustafa examining the lighting on a test shot, Simon wearing Brooks "Brite Orange"

Mustafa shooting another test shot while Simon relaxes

Rian the stylist adjusting Simon's jacket; one of our selects is visible on the monitor
With only eight shots to capture, we wrapped pretty early. I gave Simon his choice of product -- a couple of pairs of shoes, some clothes. I always feel it's nice to leave the models with a really nice feeling -- and it's also nice to have good looking folks running in our products! Plus, I simply wasn't going to try to get the clothes folded up and back in their plastic bags...

After we wrapped, Rian prepped all the clothes for the second day of shooting while I went through and narrowed down the shots to a few selects for each outfit. I would take those back with me to pick the final set later.

Rosemary made dinner reservations for the four of us at Anthony's at 6, which still gave me time to go to the hotel (the fabulous Holiday Inn Express Burlington...), stop in at a running store to find a place to run on Thursday morning, and have a little wander around Anacortes.

Anacortes marina

boat launch

We had a nice dinner -- and spent a lot of time talking about all of our cats! -- at Anthony's, but then I needed to go back to the hotel to try and get some work done. I did work for about an hour, but was feeling strangely tired so I just decided to have a hot back and was in bed by 10.

Up early on Thursday to go for a run on the Tommy Thompson Trail, a super cute little route that follows an old railway line. I joined at the "34th Street Station" (perhaps there was once actually a station of the narrow gauge there?) and headed out.

Lovely, flat, nicely paved -- it went past a couple of warehouses / buildings before simply following the edge of the bay. The morning was GORGEOUS -- a bit cloudy, with some great morning light. The water was calm and had that thick, syrupy look I love. 

The woman at the running store told me "you run towards the refinery" which didn't seem particularly scenic, but it actually was.

After a little while, the trail ran through an RV park -- seemed like a fantastic spot to camp! Not a lot of people were up and about, so I felt a little funny running past the sleeping campers.

Then I ran out across a spit of land -- which I assumed at first was the railway trestle? Nope.

This, my friends, is a railway trestle:

Apparently they had a terrible fire on the trestle a few years back -- but through a huge community fundraising effort, they were able to repair/rebuild the trestle. And it was worth it -- it's a lovely, lovely trail!

I reached the end of the trail -- which really just stops with a sign noting that the road is narrow and frequented by large vehicles (tankers from the refinery, I'm assuming). But I also reached the halfway point on my run, so it was the perfect time to turn back.

The morning was getting brighter, and the views kept getting prettier -- even if I was just quickly snapping pictures as I ran.

Finally, I finished the 30 minutes -- yay me! -- and snapped this shot back towards the refinery. Lovely. Whenever I run on a pretty trail like that I imagine what it would be like to live nearby and have that as my local run. Of course, we're spoiled here with Green Lake and the Burke-Gilman Trail being so close -- but I can easily imagine running the TTT every couple of days if I lived in Anacortes.

After finishing my run, I went back to the hotel, showered, had a bit of breakfast (though I didn't want to wait in the queue for the "pancake printer"...) and then headed to the studio for day two. We had 10 shots to do, and a slightly sleepy model, so the day was longer. But in the end we got some great shots, and I'm excited about seeing them on BR.com. All in all a great little trip!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

We've hit the halfway point!!!

Yesterday Wil had to work, so I spent the day working in the back garden. He came home just in time to see my new creation -- an outdoor "living room". Yeah, it still needs work, but it was a great place to sit outside on the couch and watch the Seahawks game. As we sat there, we started to talk about our Sunday plans...

Would we run? Neither of us really wanted to... But we also just wanted to get the halfway point behind us.

I never did get a discount for the Tacoma Narrows Half in early August... but I had just seen an ad for a 10-miler -- the Over the Narrows Run, for a very affordable $15. We can easily add another 5K to that run for an improvised half marathon, right? After all, what I really want is to run across the Narrows bridge. This will let me do it twice. AND it's a fundraiser for the Rotary. What's not to love? Sadly, I had the date wrong -- it's September 1, not next weekend. So we really didn't have any excuses. We were going to have to get up on Sunday and run.

Wil got us up and moving -- I was sore from Saturday's garden work and felt a little whiny -- but up we got, and we left the house at 6am to drive to Green Lake. Less than three hours later we were back, having run our 20th half marathon -- halfway through the 40@40 project! There's something very nice and soothing about running laps around Green Lake. No traffic, no roads, and a series of repeating landmarks... The flower stump, the Bathhouse, the pool, the Aquatheater, the car... repeat. After the first loop we decided to listen to music (or Radio 4, in Wil's case), to pass the time more quickly. Things went well, but I'm not gonna lie -- I was happy to be done.

I"m sure this photo is much more flattering than I deserve. :)

Let's see, what else has been happening since I blogged? I got through hiatus week with three runs (M, Th, F) around Green Lake. I must have taken Wednesday off. :)  Then I got sick over the weekend -- so sick I took Monday off, missing the kickoff test for Boot Camp! Such a bummer. But I'll of course have last session's end result to compare it to.

This week I also ran twice, on Tuesday and Thursday -- and both runs were great. I guess, since I confessed this to Wil during the run today, I can record it here. I've been following the NHS Couch to 5K program, listening to the podcasts. Most weeks I just did the first two runs -- given that I have Tuesday and Thursday to run. But in the hiatus weeks I have done three runs. I"m now up to running 28 minutes straight, during which I run three miles. Not super fast, I know, but enough that I should be able to PR in a 5K -- one of my stretch goals for 2012. Yay! I'll say this -- the NHS podcasts are great -- decent pop music that all sounds like other songs you know, a host named Laura who sounds a little bit like my sister-in-law Rebecca, and not having to fiddle with a watch -- Laura tells me when to run and when to walk. Next week I'll run for 30 minutes straight -- pretty exciting. I've gotten a little faster, and a lot more confident. I think I'll finally be able to keep up with Wil on the long runs now! :)

Realized with a bit of a start that Wil's folks arrive in less that four weeks. So much to do! Really excited about their visit, and our trip to the Canyonlands in October! (And, now, an excuse NOT to do the Edmonds Half on the 16th of September... ha!)

Friday, August 10, 2012

2012 Walt Disney World Half Marathon Medal

Last night, after a lot of buildup, Disney released the design for the 2012 Walt Disney World Half Marathon medal. I'm the kind of person who doesn't like to see the medal before I've earned it -- I like it to be a surprise -- but I admit that I got caught up in the hype.

I didn't like last year's "Donald" medal -- I prefer all metal rather than colorful -- so I was a little relieved when this was revealed:

2012 Walt Disney World Half Marathon Medal

Next they'll reveal the 20th anniversary Mickey medal for the full -- which should be beautiful. But what will they do for the Goofy? I've always hated the Goofy medal we earned back in 2010. (Wah wah, I know.) So I was hoping for a return to the classic Goofy face. But maybe Goofy will look more like Donald? As long as it doesn't look like an overgrown 5K medal, I'll be happy...

Inspired by the medal, I went out for another run this morning. A little bit faster than yesterday, and I felt good during the run. Still, I've missed boot camp this week -- really looking forward to getting back to the new normal next week!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

hiatus week

So we're on hiatus from boot camp this week -- so I've felt a little confused all week.

Damon from boot camp announced that we would hold "buddy boot camp" sessions on Tuesday and Thursday at Roosevelt High School -- so I decided that I would run Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Monday I ran 25 minutes straight, coming within a hundred yards or so of a full circuit of Green Lake. That's pretty exciting. I'll do that same workout on Wednesday and Friday -- I'm hoping to complete the circuit one of those days.

Today I went to Damon's workout. A bunch of us went -- Kerry, Kelsey, David (?), and Mylie -- and Damon put us through our paces. Kerry clearly had a great time -- saying how fun it was to have someone else call the shots. We did progressions, lots of sprints, a jog around the school, and lots and lots of pushups. Nice.

Oh, and on Monday night I had my fourth tap class. I felt like we spent a little too much time reviewing, but I'm also one of the students who seems to already "get" it. I enjoy the review -- and I really enjoy the feeling when I just relax and feel the rhythm and it "works". But I would like to feel like we're moving forward a bit more.

I had been feeling a little funny about tap -- I mean, I don't plan to take "intermediate" tap, or try to get better at it. Largely because I can't imagine actually making up a routine. But then today I realized that maybe it's parallel to singing or playing an instrument -- that you can play guitar without writing songs. Maybe I can learn someone else's choreography? I also felt that way about swing dancing -- I could do moves, but I just didn't always know what to do next.

Regardless, I'm really glad to have been taking tap.

Tomorrow -- another run!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Boot Camp Session Two Wrap Up

Today was test day, which isn't a super-tough workout, but is fun and helps me realize that I really am getting stronger.

After warming up, we started with the mile run. My goal was to run without stopping. And to be faster than the last test.

Lap 1: 2:00 -- too fast
Lap 2: 4:04 -- yep, still too fast
Lap 3: 6:23 -- that is probably more like it
Lap 4: 8:29 -- MY FASTEST MILE EVER!!!

I am not sure how I ran at the start of the session, but I finished the last session at 8:58. So yay me.

Pushups? I did 22. Yeah, 22 military pushups. Then 12 very wobbly modified pushups. A stellar improvement.

Situps? 27, I think. Ellen said that I looked really strong in my core. Very cool.

Squat press -- I held for 1:45, but frankly got bored.

Plank I lasted 1:35, which was quite an improvement for me, but I still have a long way to go.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Boot camp!!!

On Monday Kerry asked us what we wanted to work on on Wednesday. So we emailed our requests in, and Kerry designed a super-workout for us.

As I think back to this morning... well, a lot of it was a blur. We did a lot of arm work -- running with our arms up in the air holding resistance bands. Warming up in our usual way, then traveling over to the first hill to do lunges up the hill... with our arms over our heads. I don't usually have pictures from boot camp, but Kerry snapped this and sent this out today:

We then moved over to the hill on the side and did ab work "up hill". A bit of team band work followed -- including the punches I love. Then to the "big" hill, where we ran a series of hill sprint repeats. That's when I thought I would lose it... oh, and I felt like I tweaked my hamstring. At the top we did pushups and dips.

Then back down the hill and we returned to the lower field for cool down. All in all a really fantastic workout. On Friday we'll test. I don't feel particularly fast for the mile, and I also am not sure if I feel very strong for pushups, sit-ups or planks. We'll see.