Thursday, November 30, 2006

he's not only fast, he's smart too.

i'm talking about handsome of course. by the way if you haven't checked out his blog you should because he's quite funny.

anyway, he was reading my post about my hyper-competitive-fundraising disorder, and the man has a good point. his point is that while it won't get me a special number, i can take a bit of credit for his and drew's fundraising because it's partially my fault doing that they are running in the first place. and so, when you think about that, if i make my $10k...when all is said and done, that's at least $17,600 for the leukemia & lymphoma society. which isn't anything to sneeze at.

thanks demps.

but i'm still going to auction of the butt. =)

on another note, sorry for the lack of posts this week. i've been feeling a bit out of sorts and getting used to my new job and oddly exhausted. i haven't run since sunday due to various life circumstances and i feel tremendously guilty about it. we're running 16-18 saturday...and i'm hoping that at least not running much this week has allowed my shin splint to heal a little more than usual, although it still pinches when i'm going downstairs.

and finally...a few shout outs.

1. happy birthday's to mel & abbi!! welcome to the 30-club ladies.
2. please send some healing vibes in drew's direction. he's still battling the issues from the long run at the trails, and if you remember how frustrated i was when i had my it band issues, you know what he's going through.

Monday, November 27, 2006

yet another (although less noble) reason to give me money.

because i want to be in the top 10 fundraisers in the country for this season.

i can't remember if i'm mentioned that i'm secretly competitive or not...but i am. you're probably thinking - hmm. well she doesn't *seem* all that competitive about her running. well, that is because i am scared to death of all this running stuff, mostly of injuries, even though i'm doing pretty well. so where does it come out? well, in the fundraising arena. i think right now that i'm the 2nd highest fundraiser for the new york city chapter of team in training for the arizona marathon. sweet right? yes, but good enough? negative.

today we got our weekly e-mail about the race and they announced that the top 10 fundraisers for the country get to wear special numbers. under that...anyone that raised $8500 gets a travel bag. hrmmm. the girl that's ahead of me, katie, is ranked THIRD in the country for fundraising. THIRD. katie is a sweetie who spoke before our 18 mile run. her younger brother is fighting leukemia and doing well, and she's raised over $10,000, which is amazing. at this rate, while i'm kinda certain i'm going to be able to get the bag, i want the top ten.

so bring it. i'm not going to be satisfied with some tote. it's time to raise some more cash, catch katie and get my soon-to-be-tattooed-little-butt into the top ten. oh no, i didn't forget about the tattoo. it's looking like my ace at this point.

if you really want to save my ass (so to speak), there's a few things you can do...
donate if you haven't already...every single dollar counts. see if your company matches and take advantage.
• if you've already donated, or you can't donate, spread the word!! take a few minutes and tell people about what i'm doing, if you have a blog, or you know people with blogs, ask them to give me a little linkage (thanks again matt!)
• have great fundraising ideas? send them my way. i'll give you credit, promise.

and if you are more of the instigating type, and would like to promote "project tattoo jen's bum" or have ideas as to how to do so, send them my way too. i'm going to need contacts of people who can spread the word...

you guys rock, i know...let's kick some butt the final few weeks.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

mama needs some new trainers

my plan was to run late today so i could enjoy the crazy-nice weather. i should have got up early in the morning and gotten it over with instead though, because going up to the park to run late on a sunday when you're tired and a little whiny.

but i did.

i set out around 5:30 for the park- we got a break this week since we had run 18 last week, so we "just" had to run 10-12. even though the mileage is so much lower, i still get nervous before these runs. weird? maybe but i do. they also have turned off all the water fountains, which is really annoying. so now we have to carry water in addition to our yummy goo snacks. i don't have a "water belt" yet (add it to the list of geeky accessories i need to buy) so i carried around a water bottle.

i opted for a full loop (6.2) and a middle loop (4). i tried a different approach for dealing with my mile 1-3 aches and pains. i acknowledged they were there, remembered they would go away, and tried to ignore them. it kinda worked, and by 30 minutes or so into it, i was cruising. well, maybe not cruising, but not going at a snails pace either.

once that happened, it was kind of strange to know that i was not going to get too tired or sore for the rest of the run. i have, after all, run 18 miles! =) i almost was...bored? i think because it was not a huge challenge, and my tunes are getting a little old. i think i'm going to have to start adding to my marathon list (hint, hint) and mix it up a bit.

and so today's mileage brings me up to the big 250 mark, which means i need to think about a new pair of kicks. i'll take these into the running store and see if they recommend anything new based on how i'm wearing these in, and some of my arch/shin splint issues. i'm excited for new shoes except for the dinero...

today's mileage: 10.2
total mileage: 250.5

Friday, November 24, 2006

a quickie

~yawn~ i just woke up from falling asleep on the couch a bit and realized i hadn't written about today's run...

i'm tired cause we hit the mall at 8:30 for crazy-shopping-day, otherwise known as black friday. i cut myself off after a few hours (like 2) and it was back home to run.

after catching up on more lost, i headed out from my house to nonna's again. the weather today was much kinder, in the 50's and sunny. today i could enjoy the country scenery, and from a view i don't usually get. i got some great photography ideas on the way, and even loosened up earlier than yesterday (although that shouldn't be surprising given the cold, wind and rain).

despite being super slow at the beginning, i caught up to marathon pace and finished at nonna's right on time for my 1 hour and 12 minute deadline. and then we went and had too much italian at a local restaurant. two glasses of wine put me in sleep mode, hence the dozing on the couch.

i'm back off to the city tomorrow, and i'll do my "long run" of 10-ish miles at the park on sunday. it was a good trip home...

today's mileage: 6.1
total mileage: 240.4

Thursday, November 23, 2006

i earned my turkey.

indeed i did.

i got up this morning at 9 with the plan to leave the house by 10:30. challenge number food in the house i like to have for breakfast. dad offered to make me bacon and egg sandwiches, which i love, but its not exactly pre-running food so i settled for an english muffin and a banana.

it looked very very cold from inside the house where i sat planning my route with the google pedometer. we live so far out, i was not exactly sure that our road was going to be ON the google pedometer but it was. since i haven't run since the 18 miles, i figured i'd do 5-6. plus we don't have to run much this weekend...between 8 & 12 i think so i figured i owed it to myself to play a little catch up with the mileage.

i checked the mileage from my house to my nonna's (grandmother's for you non-italians) which was a little over 6 miles. not bad. i checked the weather. bad. 40 degress, "feels like 34". yuck. and it was raining. steadily. did i mention i also do not have proper running pants yet? oh yes, i was prepared. since technically we can run in shorts in the 40's, i decided to brave it. i had some cheap gloves, a long sleeved shirt and, although i tried to protect my ears, everything i could find kept driving my headphones uncomfortably into my little eardrums. warm ears or music? music, no doubt. i was ready.

i ghetto-wrapped my ipod again and stepped outside. it was COLD. instead of complaining i just started going. the rain was steady, and not exactly light, but once i got going, it was manageable. it was really funny to run 1)on the road, 2)a route that i've driving a thousand times and takes maybe 10 minutes in the car, 3)without other people running around me. even when i've run in the rain before in the park, there were always other looney's out there with me. this time, it was just me, the wilderness & the road.

i'm still bothered by the shin-splint but i was so cold it didn't bother me as much. i wasn't having a hard time running, but the weather was just plain old unpleasant. about 1/2 way to nonna's, the wind kicked in, just in time for me to run down a wide, wind-tunnel of a road. that was the hardest part. cars were flying past me, spraying & splashing me with the run-off on the roads, and god only knows what they had to say about seeing some girl not only running in the freezing rain, but in shorts!

somewhere around 4 & 1/2 miles, everything loosened up, and i completely picked up the pace. i felt like for the first time in a while (sprints don't count, they hurt too much), i was running versus jogging. it was great. i didn't care about the rain, the wind...nada. i was *trucking!* down route 148 feeling completely crazy for running in weather like that and loving it. my dad drove by (he was meeting me with warm clothing) and i waved, happy i was looking good at that moment in time.

i realized right around then, that it would be much better for me to run 6/7 miles than 4 for shorter runs. i can really push the run at the end because that's when i start to really get into it, and leaving a run with that high is the best. so i can't be afraid of the longer short runs - they'll be easier than the shorter ones! duh!

when i got to nonna's dad was waiting and they both looked a little horrified at how be-draggled i looked, but i assured them i felt okay. the heat against my freezing cold & wet skin literally made me tingle with a strange kind of numbness, and my skin was totally red everywhere from the cold, but i felt great. especially after i changed into my sweats. but i have to say for myself that i am one tough cookie.

happy thanksgiving everyone.

today's mileage: 6.1
total mileage: 234.3

sidebar no longer where it belongs?

okay, this post is going to require a response, esp. from you PC users! i was horrified to find my dad asking why all the "stuff" that used to be on the side of my blog is now on the bottom.

i looked on this computer and indeed, my sidebar is no longer where it should be!! on my mac it looks fine so now i need to figure out if is a pc-mac thing or certain browsers or what.

if you have a pc, and you noticed a few weeks ago the format changed, can you please e-mail me ( let me know if you are mac or pc, what brower you use, and which version it is (this one, for example is uh, actually, i don't know how to find it on a pc at the moment, but 5.0, etc. and if you're on a PC and it looks fine, if you could let me know as well, it would be really helpful.

thanks! and sorry if you've been dealing with icky formatting. if you see anything like that in the future, please do let me know asap and i'll try to have it fixed.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

home, home on the range

it's good to be out of the city.

i almost missed the train on the way to grand central. no one wanted me. cabs were changing shifts and they were only interested in people going to the airport. i felt like the scruffy puppy in the pet shop window..."pick me! pick me!" with not a second to spare, one did, and mangaged to get me to the train with a few (er, exactly 2) minutes to spare. i tipped him 50%. i hope he has a nice thanksgiving.

then my friend becky's dad picked us up and we drove home to lovely brimfield. we waved hello to the stars, hung out in front of the fire in the living room before heading out to a "sports bar" on rte 20 in "palma" (spelled palmer). ah home. i am always delighted and horrified with what i find here. tonight we just tried not to attract too much attention.

after just a few, and not nearly enough catch up, we headed back home. i'm going to try to run tomorrow, although truth be told, i'm afraid of the cold, mean dogs, and not having any water to drink.

wish me luck.

oh! ps. on my last fundraising letter, i said that people should tell me what they are thankful for and send it in. not ONE of you did, so you "special" thanksgiving post may not have as much thankful content as i would have liked, but i'll do my best to fill it with some thankfulness of my own.


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

slow on the running...

i'll fess up now. i haven't ran since the 18 on saturday.

this is less a function of soreness (i am surprisingly okay after that run!) and more of life being crazy. sunday i was at my old office all day cleaning, organizing and getting things okay for green team because i was leaving. then i had to be at grand central monday morning at 7 am to go to connecticut for a client meeting for my new job! on my first day! today i couldn't get up out of bed...and then after work i had a few drinks with colin and josh, rendering me too tired to pack tonight.

i figure i'm going to need to run in order to keep my sanity while i'm at home. i'm going to try to run tomorrow morning, but i'll probably have to pack that means i'll run at home a lot.

i just can't tell you how exhausted i am. i'll be over it soon, but i think some time away from the city will do me good.

next post from the wilds of brimfield, massachusetts...

Saturday, November 18, 2006

18 miles in the armpit of america

it's been a really long week. i can now let you in on the major reason i've been a little absent from the blog. in short, i decided to leave green team and go to another agency, called syrup. i'm excited about my move, but getting everything squared away and saying goodbyes has made it a very emotional week.

we had to be uptown at 7 am this morning to leave the trails in nj, and because drew lives in brooklyn, he crashed on my couch so we could make sure he got to practice. of course, we ended up chatting until 1 am...not exactly a smart move when you have to be up at 6:15.

woke at the right time, got dressed, woke drew up, made toaster waffles with pb & honey, chugged water, and left a little bit late. met handsome up the block, hopped in a cab to charlotte's apartment - she was driving. we were running late so by the time we got to the meeting spot, most people were gone and so it was off to new jersey.

we make a pretty good little foursome, i have to say. we had a fun car-ride to the trails, with topics ranging from various running aches and pains, to my tattoo auction and what if's (what if the guy has the same name as an ex-boyfriend?).

it was kind of chilly when we got there, but we knew we were going to warm up so that wasn't really an issue. the issue was running the 18 miles. honolulu was supposed to do 20. everyone else could do 18-20. charlotte and i decided on 18, since we have another 6 weeks and 20 is the most we were going to run. the course was a "down & back" - 9 miles down, 9 miles back - all on a dirt path along the delaware river. the coaches set up water spots for us at miles 4, 6, & 7.5 (so we also had water at 10.5, 12 & 14 on the way back). there were bathrooms at the start but we were going to have to commune with nature if we needed to go again.

we started out and i was achy as usual. it band on the right (but not debilitatingly sore), shin splint on the left, random tightness here and there. by the time we got to mile 4 though, i was feeling better and already you could feel th...

EDITOR'S NOTE:while at home in brimfield, i went to up date my mileage from 18.0 to 18.2, and i somehow erased 2/3's of this damn post. i am so damn only hope is that my mother printed it out to read it. argh. in anycase, here is the short version of the rest of the story...i'll try to recreate in more detail later:

-handsome ran 18.2 miles super fast, he is a speedy maniac
-drew ran 20 miles fast, but suffered from some i.t. band issues. yuck.
-charlotte & i ran our 18 miles at our usual speed - we did fantastic!! and, crazily enough...i could have run two more.

today's mileage: 18.2
total mileage: 228.2

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

test #2 (aka mile repeats)

so tonight we did the test we were supposed to do last week, which is basically to almost-sprint a mile, then recover for .7, repeat twice for a total of about 5.1 miles, three of which was sprinted.

the weather was with us tonight, and it was warm again. it's so much easier when its warm out. handsome was early too so we had a chance to catch up. we passed off the spirit tee, got an announcement (for everyone that was there saturday, a repeat) that our coach christine is preggers, and one of the other girls got engaged. cheers all around.

this dumb shin splint - oh, forgot to ice it! - is really bugging me. it takes too too long to loosen up for my liking. i was nervous that the sprinting because of all the impact would really aggrivatae the shin splint. i decided on the warm up to go for one really good one with the group, and see how it felt. i also had forgotten my watch, which was so annoying because this was an important watch practice.

christine said that we shouldn't feel like we were going to puke at the end, but pretty close. oh goody.

my first run was hard...but fast (for me of course). after about 1/2 way, i wasn't sure i was going to make it. i was heavy breathing like crazy. it hurt. but i ran a whole mile in 8 minutes and 3 seconds. that is more than a minute faster than then the first time! and i did think that i might throw up. so i must have done it right.

on the second, i tried to go at a fast but moderate pace, but i was without watch, so i don't know how fast it was. if i had to guess, i'd say around 8:40, 8:45. and my shin was aching. i decided after the 2nd one to ask the christine how i should be dealing with my shin splint. she basically said that the *most* important thing for training at this point is the long runs, and so the thing to be careful of is anything that could jeapordize them. so if i felt like sprinting another loop was going to hurt me more than benefit, i should just call it.

and so i did. another girl with shin splints also said that at this point, if you do enough cardio each week, you won't loose the endurance built up so far, so i feel a little more comfortable substituting cross training for a few runs until this little bugger is gone. i'll try to get up and do a little run tomorrow morning, since i did a shortie tonight.

okay, g'night people!

today's mileage: 3.4
total mileage: 210.0

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

i think i'm there...

after a crash-course in photoshop over i.m. (thank you michael) and many do-overs... here it is...

now i just have to print and figure out how to attach it to the shirt...

bouv's girls (pre-jeanne that is!)

this is steve's favorite picture of him and the girls.

this was taken in 1998, just after we all graduated from college. r. had us all over for a quieter celebration of our finishing school, "growing up", and heading out to the real world (boston, france, new york...anywhere but home!)

it's funny how a picture can make you smile and cry at the same time.

this is the picture steve took with him to the hospital when he was getting treatment.

this is the picture i took with me on my bike ride when i learned that he was going into hospice.

this is my favorite picture of all of us. thank you jeanne (and katie!) for sending this along.

back to work on the collage...

Monday, November 13, 2006

a trip to the trails

this saturday we'll be taking a trip to lovely new jersey to run on the trails. i'll leave to ramone to explain. i'm excited. except for the running time (you'll see).

As you most of you know , next saturday November 18th we'll be taking a road trip to NJ to go for a nice trail run. Running on the trails besides providing a good chance of scenery will help your body go thru the longrun minimizing the stress to your joint/muscles by running on soft surface. We are going to the Delaware River /Raritan Canal towpath, Piscattaway, NJ, this is the place where yours truly run most of my longruns, so let's face, it's good for me, it's got to begood for you !

Meeting time: 7:00 am
Meeting spot: 77th street between Central Park west and Columbus
Travel time to trails: 48:36
Start running: 8:15 am
Running time : Long time
Expected time back to the city: around 1:30-2 pm.

huh. that sounds like a long morning to me...i guess it'll be an extra early evening the night before.

cross-training - check!

since i did my long run yesterday, i thought that i would cross-train today. of course because of an even tonight, my only option was to get up before work for the gym. bleh. i decided i would leave it to fate and if when i woke up it wasn't raining i would go to the gym; if it was, i would get to sleep in.

my alarm went off at 6 rain. after a small debate, i threw on some clothes, grabbed the bike and just made it to the 6:30 spin class. i haven't been to spin class in *ages* and i was a little nervous that i was going to hurt. a lot.

i was pleasantly surprised that it didn't, and because i hadn't been in months i could really see how strong my legs have gotten. the only part that hurt was my knee when i was supposed to stand and ride, so instead, i stayed seated the whole time and just turned up the resistance (making it harder to pedal) instead. by the end i was a sweaty red-faced mess, but it felt good. it's also great to be done with training at 7:30.

now i need shower and head to work...

Sunday, November 12, 2006

breaking 200

despite the rain and feeling incredibly discouraged from yesterday's disaster, i forced myself out for a run this afternoon. it had been threatening to rain all day, but hadn't and sure enough as soon as i started to get ready to go, the skies opened up. it was sort of warm (58 i think) so i put on my best "i'm a tough girl" face and left the apartment.

when i run on my own i use my handy new york sports club membership to store my stuff at the gym near the park on 73rd and cpw (that's central park west for the non-new-yorkers). its very convenient and worth the accusing stares of the people working the front desk who either a) think i am that much of a wuss that i leave 10 minutes after i arrive or b) know i'm just using them for storage.

i made a make-shift raincoat for my ipod out of a cut up ziplock baggie, because running 12 miles without music was just not going to happen today, and headed out. the rain was not terrible, but it was colder than i first thought, which is never nice because it takes that much longer for one's already stiff body to get limber.

the first three miles were awful awful awful. my shin splint hurt on my left leg. my it band hurt near my knee on my right leg. and my mind had a terrible case of "who are you kidding, you're never going to be able to run a marathon!"s. did i mention it was awful? usually when i'm doing distance i'm running with charlotte, so these thoughts, even if they are somewhere in my brain, never get to come to the surface and hang out because we're usually chattin' it up for the first few miles. when i'm by myself however, they are really very very pesky and evil creatures.

to get me through, i thought about steve, and all the pictures his mom sent me for the spirit tee. so cute! i thought about all of you who have been so supportive, not just by donating, but by really caring. you ask how training is. you read this silly blog of mine. you send me really thoughtful e-mails. i really DO take your words with me when i run. i need them (as you can see!). they keep me going when i might otherwise not be able to.

and along with all your encouragement, what i need to also remember is that i always feel like crap the first few miles. and i can't let it get to me so much. because even today, for all my little aches and pains, once i got somewhere between miles 2.5 & 3...i felt not just good, but really good. maybe even great. actually, i probably felt great around mile 5. what i'm trying to spit out is that i ended up have a really wonderful run today.

the rain stopped around mile 3 too, and i was left with a misty, slightly breezy, uncrowded, beautiful central park. fall is definitely my favorite season, and with the leaves drifting from the trees, across the paths, and the pavement almost shining under the lights, there were moments when i was all alone that were kinda magical. those are the kind of moments i have to hold on to during miles 0-3.

thank you for helping me run 200 miles.

today's mileage: 12
total mileage: 206.6

Saturday, November 11, 2006

worst. run. ever.

prepare yourself for a lotta whining.

since i've been trying to kick a nasty cold, i thought that today i would do my short run, and tomorrow i would do my long run. this week, since we did 16 last week, i only had to do 12 miles, so i thought that 2 loops in the park tomorrow evening would be fun (and smart). then, since i've had this dumb shin splint that won't go away on my left leg that i'm paranoid about, i thought, why not give my body a break from the pavement, and do the 3-4 miles on the treadmill.

damn treadmill and damn legs.

i started off at a faster pace than usual, which probably wasn't wise since i haven't run since wednesday and, being sick, have been doing a lot of laying around. i was aiming for an 11 minute mile and after one at that pace, my RIGHT leg, the one without the shin splint, betrayed me and my calf totally cramped up, which hasn't happened in months. argh. i slowed down to my typical pace but it felt so bad that i had to stop.

i probably could have completed the miles very painfully, but i remembered ramon saying one day, if your body is refusing, then the benefits may not outway the hurt by keeping going. plus i still need to do my 12 tomorrow, which needs to go well or, well, i will just be very discouraged.

so i grouchily stopped and got a good long stretch in. and made my way home. i'm icing my shin as i write. i don't even want to admit the mileage but i will. it shouldn't even count, it's so sad and pathetic. i guess i should be happy that my cough seems to be disappating, but if you don't mind, i'm just going to sulk for a little bit.

today's mileage: 1.5
total mileage: 194.6

Friday, November 10, 2006

unstoppable...well usually

i'm home sick again, and bored out of my mind! i know its necessary so i can kick this nasty cold but there's lots to be done at work, and i can't run until i stop coughing - this stresses me out psychologically.

two things to brag about today:

1. this morning we passed the $7,000 mark! i want to hit $8,000 by turkey-day so this is a good start!

2. we got one of our weekly e-mails from the social captain today and it in was a little blurb about why i got the spirit made me smile.

Congratulations to Phoenix’s, Roxie, who won the spirit Tee this week. Whether it’s training, fundraising or supporting fellow TNTers- Roxie is unstoppable and always goes the extra mile. Roxie started TNT with an ambitious fundraising goal of $5,000 and has since raised it to $10,000. She’s willing to do whatever it takes to reach that goal and may even auction off a tattoo (a real one) on her butt with the name of the highest bidder. Roxie never forgets to bring her smile and positive attitude to practice, even when it is pouring rain. On marathon Sunday she spent the first part of the race cheering in Brooklyn and then joined TNT in Harlem, where she could be heard for miles shouting words of support till the bitter end, when the sweep bus passed. Congratulations Roxie!

hopefully lots of soup and bad tv will render me unstoppable again soon. right now i am very stopped.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

i'm a team in training nerd.* and a lunatic.

every week on wednesday, in addition to the mission moment and the weekly "celebrity", the spirit tee is awarded. the spirit tee is awarded to participants who exemplify the spirit of what team in training is, go above and beyond the bare minimum, are involved, enthusiastic, and an inspiration to the other memebers of the team. people are nominated by their mentors, or other teammates, and then i'm guessing that a smaller group (not sure who) selects the winner.

the winner then adds to the spirit tee - a signature, picture of the person their running for, etc. it becomes a tribute to all the reasons that we run.

it was still raining when i was leaving work, so i traveled in my really spectacular high-boots + running shorts outfit, which was made even more trollopy by my long coat which pretty much hid the shorts. we were meeting in the park, which i was excited about because it meant i didn't have to trapse across canal street.

with the typical wednesday luck though, the trains were still running funky. i blamed it on the rain and decided not to get too worried. i ran into our social captain, jessica, who was doing announcements that night and we braved the way, but since she *had* to be on time, and i could be a minute or two late, she ran off ahead. the rain was steadily coming down, but it was still warm, so i tried to avoid puddles as i made my way to my to the fountain.

jessica first announced the celebrity of the week...and then, as i was peeling off my boots, she announced that i was the winner of the spirit tee! my face expressed my surprise. i got the tee because i was out cheering until the very end on sunday, because of my kick-ass fundraising (and big goals) and because i'm even thinking of...

oh wait. i haven't told you the idea.

i have a rather insane idea. depending on your sense of humor, adventure, and feeling about tattoos, you will think i am more or less insane. alright, i'll stop wasting time and just tell you.

i'm considering doing an e-bay auction. the highest bidder gets their name (first only!) tattooed on my bum.

[dramatic pause for reactions]

yes a real tattoo. no, not big. unless we get so much pr it goes corporate and then i will consider logos. i get final editorial and i will check id. i pick the ink, the font and the spot. i will pay for the tattoo. yes, the winner will get photo proof. no, i do not already have tattoos - this will be my first.

[dramatic pause for further reactions]

before you start commenting, (and by the way, if you guys have no comments on this post, i'm going to think that no one could possibly be reading!) here are my reasons.

1. this could have amazing pr potential. picture: "did you hear about he crazy girl who's auctioning off a tattoo on her butt for charity?" in e-mails, other blogs, who know - let's go for letterman!
2. i'm going to guess that this could build do a few thousand bucks at least. and you know i must reach $10,000.
3. people have gotten tattoos for *way* dumber reasons. or for no reasons at all. this is for charity people!
4. i can always have it lasered off.
5. i think it's a pretty funny story.

but BACK to the spirit tee! so in addition for generally kicking ass at practice and having team spirit and fundraising like a mad woman, i think that i am even considering doing this pretty much put me over the edge to win. and now i have to figure out how to do steve proud decorating the shirt. i'm thinking maybe some red sox emblem of some sort.

we then went and ran 4.7 miles (in the rain) and then had a pizza dinner with one of our honored teammates. unfortunately, she was a little far away from me so i wasn't able to get her whole story and so i'm going to try to attend another event with her.

and about the tattoo - because i care what you think, i'm going to leave you with a little survey on the tattoo topic. but remember. this is a dictatorship. a benevolent one, but a dictatorship none the less. so vote vote vote people!

today's mileage: 4.4
total mileage: 193.1

ps: we didn't do the test today because there were so few people and it was tres slippery to be running in the rain. i'm going to guess it's going to happen next week.

*when i say nerd, i mean it in the most affectionate of terms. steve used to call me "nerd", "kiss ass" and "brown noser" all the time in jr. high school. mmm actually, in high school too. and yes, he meant it will love too.

it's rainy, i'm sick and our second "test" is tonight

its pouring outside, and my cough came back last night with a vengence. i suppose it might have been the whisky (just one!) that i had last night in celebration of the dems taking the house.

last time we had a test, i had my itb injury so i couldn't run so fast. now this time, i won't be able to breathe. ~grumble~ i've got my cranky pants on today. here's what we're going to do at practice, courtesy ramon of course. i'm hoping the rain's gonna stop before then.

We will start with a really slowly warm-up by running west and south to lamppost W6401 (just south of Tavern on the Green, same spot where we started the TEST#1). There you'll see an `S' (stands for Start) written on the ground, and that's our Starting point. We'll regroup there and start the groups in 30-60 seconds intervals. The Mile goes from Lamppost W6401 , the `S' around the sound end of the park, north on the east side up to East 72nd street. (there's `1 mile' mark written on the ground) Don't worry, one of the coaches will be there to mark the Start end End. You'll run from the S to the 1 Mile mark at a `good speed' (we'll cover that ) and then recover, really slow running across 72nd street and south to the Start. (basically you'll run lower loop) YOU all will run 3 loops.

Monday, November 06, 2006

off topic: "i know who i'm going to vote for, i don't need your help."

so tonight i took my sick-self and called some voters. i called people in new jersey, new mexico, pennsylvania & florida through you log-on, get the general script, then once you know what race you'll be calling, you can download a fact sheet on the district and see what the candidates stand for. the way the script is set up though, you have to have your own reasons as to why you are concerned. there's also a really weird point where you have to ask if the person is happy with the direction is going now and if not, why? i can imagine that getting this question from a complete stranger is weird. i felt odd asking it.

people don't like these sorts of calls huh? well, i didn't know this, it's the first time i've made calls to get out the vote. i had one person that had already voted, one who was going to vote for the person i was calling on behalf of. oh and i left one message. the rest of the people hung up, or in some way or another informed me that they were not happy about the call. in the call that i quoted for the title of my post, i hadn't even gotten to talking about the candidate or who! i had just said i was calling because i was a concerned citizen.

at that moment, i'm not going to lie: i felt like an uppity liberal. he hung up on my after that but i wanted to say "wait! stop! i'm not telling you how to vote! well, not really anyway...argh. i'm just trying to do my part!" he could have been voting democrat, who knows, but it doesn't matter. it was still frustrating to be perceived that way.

more calls tomorrow. i think those will be a different sort of script though, more along the lines of "make sure you go vote today!" and you, reading: don't forget to vote tomorrow!!!!

anyone want to bring me soup?

and movies and tuck me in on the couch?

i'm sick. the damn cold that has be circulating has finally landed. in my chest. *hack-hack*

i called into work, and am now pouting on my couch, watching bad day time tv & playing on the interweb. since the cold is in my chest, i can't run. i debated trying to cross-train later, but i know i just need to stay put and get better. i'd been fighting the tickle in my throat for a few days, and i know standing outside all day yesterday probably put me over the edge. well, that and moving and job and all the general stress that has been happening.

one good thing i can do today (besides watching lost online) is to make some pre-election calls. i missed the call-party i was supposed to go to yesterday since i had started to feel gross, so i have to make up for it today.

by the way, how BAD are all the political ads? i have the tv on as background and each commercial break is 3-4 sniping, negative campaign ads in a row. there's got to be a better way to get your point across.

any takers on soup delivery?

Sunday, November 05, 2006

nyc marathon 2006 - commentary & pics

“I think I bit off more than I could chew,” said lance armstrong about the marathon. “Even after experiencing one of the hardest days of the Tour nothing has ever left me feeling this bad,” he said at a post-race news conference. “[My shins] started to hurt in the second half, but the bigger problem the last 7 or 8 miles was the tightness in my calves and thighs. My calves really knotted up. I can barely walk right now.”

even with all the tours-de-france he's won, obviously a marathon is still not something to be taken lightly. of course, you don't need lance to tell you that if you watch the marathon. but i'm getting ahead of myself.

i went out to hipsterville (aka williamsburg) to have brunch with euroskip at one of his friend's apartments. she lives right on the route and has a balcony, so it was a prime spot. we were at mile 11 so everyone should have been looking pretty fresh. i got out there around 10, and the disabled/wheelcheer folks were going by. they are so damn inspirational. here's a few pics...

this one, i just liked that they were colorful.

we hung out downstairs and waited for the leading women. you could tell when someone important was coming because of the police escort.

amazing how fast the elite runners are. and they make it look so easy. the women sailed by, one far ahead of the pack (we figured there was no way she was going to maintain that pace, and she didn't) and then we headed upstairs for coffee, eggs and kielbasa. soon the police brigade was back and it was time for the lead men.

so cool, so fast, so effortless. they were followed by the other fast men, and before it got too crazy i saw ramon in his team in training colors! yeah ramon! and then...the pack!


it went on like that for i don't know exactly how long but well over an hour.

and then after a little while, it got sad.

last year when i watched, i was at miles 18 and 23 or so. there you expect people to be in not-the-best-of-shape, walking, and looking generally miserable. what i did not expect, was for people to look that way at mile 11. and now that i know what running is like and how much effort has gone into my own training, my heart just went out to these people. i thought to myself..."you poor poor bastards!" they still had another 15.2 miles. it is a testiment to training. an inspiration to train. an illustration of the horror of what happens when you don't train.

after a while, it was depressing and i decided to head up to 120th and 1st avenue to meet up with the team in training cheering station. i wished euro and the hosts farewell and walked up bedford to take the l across town. this guy

must have been taking a short cut uptown...

i hopped off at 125th and headed east where i found a small crew of tnt'ers. it was good i went up there because shortly after i arrived, most of the crew left and it was just our social captain and me. we spent the next few hours yelling and hollering at our teammates. she was laughing because i'm so damn loud. theatre training comes in handy i suppose!
i recogized some of the folks from tnt that i saw from brooklyn and said how there was a lot of purple at the back of the pack. we saw a lot of hurting folks but we also saw a lot of strong people who were so excited to see us, greeted us with huge smiles and even would pick it up a little bit after some cheering.

wouldn't that make you smile?

we decided to walk straight down first avenue from 120 all the way down to 86th, yelling all the way. my favorites were the older guys that had "go grandpa!" written on their shirts, they were awfully cute. as we got to 96th or so, they were breaking down the water stands and sweeping up the cups and still the stragglers came. we figured these folks were going to be finishing between 7 & 8 hours. ooooooouch.

and that was my marathon day. i'm determined to both train hard and listen well to my body for the next few months. i'm already strong enough that i know i am going to still have a smile on my face at mile 11...mile 13...and maybe even mile 15. now i just need to work on 16 through 26.

hello complete running visitors!

as part of my shameless self-promotion and hope for donations, i submitted my blog to complete running network to be part of their list of running blogs and there i am!

so hello runners! welcome to my little blog, i hope you enjoy. feel free to comment and give advice! and of course, to donate to my cause.

nyc marathon today!

i've resisted the urge to keep sleeping and i'm getting ready to have brunch with euroskip at his friend's that lives on the marathon route in w'burg. she's got a balcony so we can watch the leaders on tv then just hop out to see the elite men. i've never seen the leaders - ramon said we will hate them because they make it look so easy.

then there is a team in training group meeting at 120th and 1st avenue which is mile 19.5 . i might head up there after brunch. and then my favorite spot is on 5th avenue right around the last few miles. this is where people really need cheers, and i plan on going hoarse doing so.

if you're in ny, go out and cheer! and cheer extra hard for those purple jersey's - those are our fall season tnt teammates! i'll have pics later!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

the first ad for run girl run

the kids at green team were kind enough to put a banner ad on atm for the cause. here are some lovely screen shots, but go check out atm to see it in action. it's worth it.

thanks, euro, for the kickin' design. i love my pony tail. in case you can't read the copy (i might replace these with the banner larger)

if anyone else would like to post said banner ad, i would be more than happy to provide it (hint hint).

another longest run ever!!

SIXTEEN miles today people!! yes, that would be 16. one. six.

i was figuring more like 14 or 15, since we did 13 last week, but...nope! we did 16 whole miles today.

i'm fighting the sickness everyone has and so went to bed pretty early, and set my alarm for 5:45. i made oatmeal, and then went back to bed. weird, yes, but by eating early i can get all the fuel without worrying about getting a tummy ache.

it was 36 degrees out. cold again, but after the leg-warmer run the other day, i knew that i could take it. i was more worried about my upper body - i only have a fleece that's not running appropriate for outer wear. i hoped for the best and headed out.

we met on 72 & riverside and damn, it was *cold*. the park is a mess in preparation for the marathon tomorrow, so we were going to be running down the west side. the minimum distances were going to be:
-1/2 marathoners were going down to chambers and back (9 miles)
-beginners down the west side around the tip of manhattan, up to the south street seaport and back (16 miles)
-intermediates down, around the bottom, up to the williamsburg bridge and back (at least 18 miles)
-advanced down, around the bottom, up to 14th street and back (20 miles?)

i forgot my belt for the goo, but charlotte kindly carried my goo for me. we took off at a good pace and soon it wasn't too cold on my bare legs. i had ditched the fleace and was glad for it. my red sox hat kept my head warm, and i could breathe pretty okay. we were going to go for 14ish but keep an open mind about the 16 in case we were feeling good.

one of the more challenging parts of the run were finding water fountains along the way, because we havent run there very often. i felt like people were looking at me like i was crazy for wearing shorts. once we got down to battery park, we were feeling pretty good so we decided to go for the seaport. it was a good place to grab some water and we were off again. as we came back around the bottom of the island and back onto the westside highway, we saw a crew of what looked like out-of-town marathon runners. i got an appreciative nod which i like to think was saying "i can see you're tough, yes i can." i tried to keep that toughness with me for the last 5 miles.

things were a.o.k for the rest of the run. as usual the last few miles were the toughest, and i'm definitely sore, but no more sore than i was last week. oh and, as a bonus, we were pretty fast. by my math, just shy of 11 minute miles! so cool.

i still can't believe i can run 16 miles when i just started running less than 3 months ago. SIXTEEN. i'll let you imagine the grin on my face for yourself.

today's mileage: 16.0
total mileage: 188.7

Friday, November 03, 2006

as my mom would say, quite a "get-up"

i took my day off yesterday instead of today per the schedule. novemeber is the month that it gets tough. we supposed to run every day but two, and one of those we need to cross train. it is time to get serious and kick some ass.

because i knew i would not run after work, i had to get up this morning. as usual, i didn't want to. i was tired, having been out last night. i hadn't eaten dinner. i think i'm getting the disgusting chest-cold thing that has been plaguing everyone at my agency. because of my declaration to kick some ass, i knew i would hate myself all day if i didn't get up.

i checked the temp and it was 36 degrees. yikes. i remembered one of the coaches saying that you can run in shorts in the 40's but i thought i was going to be freezing. my apartment is still a mess, i haven't unpacked 1/2 my stuff and i could not for the life of me find any of my pants that are approrpriate for running.

what to do! as i dug around, i spied a certain accessory i had bought for my halloween costume...hmmm. did i have the guts? yeah i did. shorts, fleece, found a red sox winter cap, sneaks...and yes. leg warmers.

like i said. quite a get-up.

the run was okay. i was glad i was out there. i was a little dehydrated. a little tired. the hill-soreness kicked in. but i did it, and i've been maintaining my pace. i'm going to go to bed super early tonight because i canNOT be sick. and tomorrow...15 miles i think.

today's mileage: 4
total mileage: 172.7

Thursday, November 02, 2006

i am becoming a great athlete with a great heart

those tnt people rock. after yesterday's crazy work out, we got not only a proud e-mail from ramon, but a hill graduation certificate. check it out.

and i'll share a few of words of the e-mail from ramon. i'm so very very proud. oh yes, i am.

-What doesn't kill you makes us stronger! you guessed it ! I you are reading this, I can guarantee you are now fitter, faster, stronger than 6 weeks ago, don't thank the coaches, thank the hills and all your efforts.

-This is just one stop in a long trip: just because we conquered those hills, it doesn't mean that our job is done or things will get easier, NO WAY! Now that I know what you are capable of, YOU are in big trouble !!

-Who are you? : If I was going to tell you 10 weeks ago, that you'd be doing a workout like yesterday's , you'd probably have laughed at me, now that you have done it, continue to trust your coaches, and more important TRUST YOURSELF !!

I can only say, that you have shown the commitment and dedication from day one, the coaches are proud and happy to see How your big day it's getting closer and closer, you are going to do amazing when the day comes….NO FREAKING DOUBT !!!

As a reward to your efforts You'll be getting your Hill Graduation Certificate !! a little something that you all deserve for your dedication, hard work, willingness, for putting up with us coaches !

One more week done, one less before marathon glory ! It's truly an honor watching you becoming what you are becoming !!

off topic: my soapbox

mid-term elections are NEAR!! and everyone best be out voting, especially if you live in a district where the race is tight!

the dems have a chance to win back congress, let's get out there and do something people! it is no longer okay to sit back and believe that other people are going to do the work. it is not alright to shrug your shoulders and say "that's just the way things are." right now is a critical time for our country and our world for so many reasons - it is our responsibility NOW to get up and question, shout, discuss, act and demand change! the united states of america was born out of a group of people that were not afraid to fight for what they believed in, and it is time to reclaim that spirit and start being INVOLVED AGAIN, god damn it! you want freedom? you want freedom and democracy to stand for something good? then it's time to stop taking it for granted and give it a little of your time.

woah. i guess i'm a little feisty this morning, huh?

so how?

1. vote. duh.

2. call for change: check out where you can sign up for groups that are taking some time this weekend to call "unlikely voters" - democratic leaning people that don't often vote in mid-term elections - to make sure they get out and vote.

3. make a monitary contribution to Democracy For America. with contributions thus far, DFA has been able to launch radio spots in targeted districts, and your funds can help continue these efforts as well as give DFA-List candidates much-needed funds to put them over the top.

4. be an active citizen: stay informed and engaged. read the news. stay on top of the issues. have a stand.

and if my empassioned outburst hasn't inspired you, here are some reasons from our friend al gore that may...

Why should you pick up the phone?

Do it because the ice is melting in the Arctic, in Greenland and all over the world, and unless we take on the climate crisis soon, we could cross a point of no return.

Do it because the war in Iraq is a disaster, and our brave men and women who are fighting and dying there need an honorable and speedy path home.

Do it because in the wealthiest nation in the world, there are millions of kids who can't go the doctor when they get sick because they don't have health care.

Do it because President Bush and this Congress have chipped away at our fundamental rights—rights guaranteed every citizen—that make our country a beacon of freedom. Do it because our government shouldn't be able to wire-tap innocent citizens without a warrant.

Do it because of Abu Ghraib. Do it to tell the world that America won't sanction torture—and we fire the politicians who do. That's the real no-brainer.

Do it because five years after September 11th, President Bush and the Republican Congress have made us all less safe.

But most of all, do it because the country we all love needs our help. Our democracy is in trouble. America needs you. And in these next four days, you can come to her aid.

This election represents our greatest opportunity in decades to tilt our nation toward a progressive future. Making some calls to infrequent voters only takes an hour or two. But if thousands of us do this together, we can make history.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

no more hills!!

tonight was officially our last night of hill training - yeah!!

in celebration of our "graduation" we were going to be running up and down the largest hill in central park until the coaches said stop. yeeeeeeah. this hill, harlem hill, is intimidating when you have to go up on a "normal" run, never mind running up and down it. i remember when i was biking at the park in training for my ride last year how i hated that hill. and now...i can run it. ha.

tonight was also the first practice that drew made it too (don't worry, he's been running on his own). can't believe i didn't have my damn camera. it was fun to have all four of us. as i've known all along, we're a good little crew and it was cool to have us all together.

so we went from 90th on the east side in an easy warm-up up to 110th street on the westside. the idea was to apply all our hill-learnings to this evening's practice. we would split the hill in two - run the first 1/2 at a high effort level, the second 1/2 at a normal one, then recover on the way back down. then the next time, run the first 1/2 normal effort, and the 1/2 half on. recover on the way back down. ramon stood in the middle marking the 1/2 way point and lovingly harassed us.

i had some new aches and pains, but i'm chalking them up to the heels i was sporting for halloween. we did 5 return trips. after coming home and looking it up, one way was about a 1/2 mile, maybe a little more. then, each way up and back was another 1.3 miles. which means we ran 7.6 miles (at least!) tonight. that, is amazing. it felt, not like nothing, no run (for me) feels like nothing, but it sure didn't feel like 7.5 miles.

and i'm damn proud. nice work char, handsome and drew!

today's mileage: 7.6
total mileage: 168.7