Friday, October 31, 2014

On Overtraining

I could just kick myself.

I'm about halfway through my third book on running, and learning SO MUCH.

I've also read this one, and this one.

I'm learning that as a beginner, I don't need to focus on speed just yet, but on laying a good foundation of consistent, slowly-increasing mileage.  

That's okay with me.  Speedwork sounds scary.
Plus, I don't feel the need to win any races at this point.

We got the treadmill, and I was glad that I could now increase my runs from 3 days/week to 4 or 5.  I planned to ignore my pace and focus instead on running X number of minutes or maybe miles.  Up til then, I'd been averaging 15 miles or so per week.

So the first week, I ran 5 times, for a total of 21-ish miles.

Every runner knows it's unwise to increase any of your numbers (distance/pace) by more than 10% per week.

I'm no math whiz, but a 6-mile increase in one week was stupid.  Just plain stupid.

And I began to feel a twinge-y discomfort in my right foot, near the left side of the ball.

I took a few days off... Monday-Thursday. 

By Friday I was so antsy to run that I pushed it too hard again and did 8 miles, the most I've done yet.
I was so excited!  

I've done a few shorter, easier runs since then, but it's official:  I am having foot pain. 
I'm gonna have to take a break, much as I don't want to.

PLUS, on my last two runs, my left calf keeps trying to seize up on me.  Maybe I've altered my gait slightly, to compensate for my right foot.  I don't know.  

All I know is I want to avoid a serious injury!  I'm concerned about losing the momentum I've gained.
(And gaining the weight I've lost!)

Any advice from runners out there?  Does this sound like a stress fracture???

Thursday, October 30, 2014


Last Thursday was my birthday.  It was a wonderful, relaxing day, filled with extra hugs and kisses and pampering and ZERO dishes washed.

I don't know which I love more:  the dishwashing-free day or the triple chocolate cake.

The breakfast in bed wasn't bad either.

Olivia made me this scarf, all by herself.

Nate knocked it out of the park once again with my triple chocolate cake.

I love that guy.

>>>What fun things do you do/get/eat on your birthday?

Family Day Out (Old Mission Peninsula)

Last Monday Nate had the day off!
We decided we had to do something fun as a family.  
Have to capitalize on these times when we can!

We had not yet traveled up Old Mission Peninsula in Traverse, so that's what we decided to do.

The colors were beautiful, despite a gray day.
We stopped a couple of times at different scenic places; the scenery was gorgeous!

Up at the tip of the peninsula is Old Mission Lighthouse.  It was so cute!

(below:  from the tower)

The lighthouse keeper's quarters

A few hundred feet north of the shore of Old Mission Point lies on the 45th parallel of latitude:  the halfway point between the equator and the North Pole!

Even on a blustery, gray day, the scenery was lovely and the time together precious.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

6 Things that are Making Me Happy Today

  1. Fond memories of an evening spent with friends last night.  Especially fun was the  sushi (which is half-off on Tuesdays.  Now I must think of any excuse I can to spend Tuesdays in town.)  SO delicious.  I had the spicy avo and the soy chino (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, for lo, it is deep fried.  Oh yes.)

2.   This super-fun find at our teeny little thrift shop.  It's Ann Taylor LOFT and it was 75% off.
Of $3.
Which made it EIGHTY CENTS, my friends.  The cashier squealed along with me.  It hits juuust above knee-length and has a couple things that I normally shy away from, namely:
  • It has lace-y looking detail, very feminine. 
  • It is a color.

Yes, a color.  I don't naturally gravitate toward colorful clothes.  See?
A year or so ago Nate forbade me to purchase any more black tops.  
I branched out and started buying gray instead.  (Brave, right?)  So this skirt is a big, bold move for me.  I'll probably wear it one time, but hey.  It was only $0.80.

3.   (Am I on 3?  I don't know.)  Number 3 is the fact that one of my children gave the rest of her chocolate milk to her sister, who had spilled her own.  

4.   The buttermilk ranch dressing that I had on my giant salad today.  I've been in a zesty Italian rut for a year, and that thick full-fat dressing was so good.  

5.   A nice trip to the library today.  I used the computer, unhurried, and the girls happily played learning games and stuffed animals and found a big ol' stack of books.

6.  This goofy kid:

☆☆☆What's making you smile today?☆☆☆

Chemo Care Package

Our friend is undergoing chemotherapy right now, and we recently put together a care package for her.  Ellia was memorizing Proverbs 16:24 at the time, and it seemed appropriate.  

"Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones."

Here are the girls, working on their drawings & letters for our friend.

I scoured Pinterest using the search phrase, "chemo care package."  There are SO many good ideas out there!  Here's what we included in our box:
  • Lemon drops.  Chemo often leaves the patient with "metal mouth," and sharp flavors can help.
  • A box of tea.  Our friend loves it, so a variety pack was in order.
  • A cute travel mug.  Lots of doc appointments and tests means a travel mug is a must!
  • A pair of fuzzy socks.  Winter is upon us, sadly.
  • A bottle of hand sanitizer.  The immune system is severely compromised during chemo, so this will help ward off germs.
  • A tube of unscented hand cream.  Lots of hand-washing = dry, cracked skin!
  • A tube of lip balm.
  • A bracelet and matching earrings.  Fun and indulgent!
  • A chocolate bar.  No explanation needed, right???
  • A small flowering plant.  Pretty flowers cheer everyone up!
  • Many cards, pictures, and sweet notes from the girls.
We had SO MUCH FUN putting together this box of love and care.  
We hope it was a blessing to her!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Big Milestone!

Last month I was able to squeeze into my wedding dress.  

9 years and 364 days after we tied the knot, and 3 children later, it felt SO GOOD to zip that sucker up.
(Even if I couldn't breathe very deeply in it.)

It doesn't fit the same way it did 10 years ago, but then there isn't much that hasn't changed since that day.  I wouldn't have anything different, either.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Goofball Family

My parents were here this month for a visit.  We took them on the Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive, which was beautiful, as always.

We've done this drive a million times and had never seen this old tree whose soil is slowly eroding out from underneath it.  We think it's so cool!  

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Look what God gave me!

I spent most of the summer dreading the cold, dark winter months and trolling craigslist for a cheap treadmill.  Nate's work schedule will soon prevent me from running outdoors (NOT RUNNING IN THE DARK, THANK YOU!), and I was getting realllly nervous and not finding anything.

Fast forward to about three weeks ago, when God pricked my heart about this.  
I realized that I had not even prayed for a treadmill.
I'm a little dense sometimes.

I began to ask God for a treadmill and kept looking.  Came close (twice!) to purchasing one, but neither materialized.  Finally, the Lord orchestrated events perfectly and allowed us to try, pay for, and pick up this little beauty... all within 48 hours.  For fifty bucks.  

She's a bit of an oldie, but she runs like a dream.  Quite a loud dream, but I don't mind.  
Super grateful for God's attention to me, and so glad He often gives us our wants, in addition to our needs!

Monday, September 08, 2014

First Day of School

We started September 2.  
I can't believe it's that time.  I'm SO unwilling to bid summer goodbye.

The time has come! 
Left to right:
Brienna--Kindergarten...  Ellia--1st grade... Olivia--3rd grade

...aaaaand one goofy shot for good measure.
Whose kids these are?  I do not know.
(Name that poet!)

Saturday, September 06, 2014

Special End-of-Summer Day

Someone gifted us with some "fun money!"  We took a special picnic one afternoon and went out for delicious ice cream afterward.  The girls LOVED it!