Tuesday, August 26, 2008
I need a couple days to write my wrap up for the challenge. Until then, here's the list from last week:
Following the rules I used through, here's the breakdown:
Trip 1: $37.27
Trip 2: $29.54
Trip 3: $44.17
Week 4 Total: $110.98
Week 1 List
Week 1 Meals
Week 2 List
Week 2 Meals
Week 3 List
Monday, August 25, 2008
Monday: 4.5 miles, trail run
Tuesday: 4 miles, bike
Wednesday: 3.4 miles, easy
Thursday: 40.2 miles, bike
Saturday: 5-6 miles, walking (splitting difference @ 5.5)
Sunday: 6 miles, long/hill
Total: Run - 13.9 miles; Bike - 44.2 miles
Back on track with the running. Will be slowly adding on the miles over the next month. This coming weekend will be a bit out of whack, with Midnight Flight 10k on Friday. I'll swap out my weekend ride for Sunday, and sleep in as late as possible Saturday morning.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
This year was all about the destination. Carowinds in Charlotte, North Carolina. There's a Six Flags 30 minutes from home, but Carowinds has a Nickelodeon theme, so Carowinds it had to be.
The kids had a great time. We were soaked, sunburned, and generally worn out on the way home. B2 and DD are tall enough now for a few of the big kid rides, so they were able to do more with B1. And B1 was thrilled his little sister no longer insisted on dragging him onto the Dora the Explorer Train, and was instead going for the medium roller coasters.
I enjoy amusement parks for my own reasons. Sure, I like the rides, and having thrill-a-minute fun with the kids. Amusement parks are also fantastic for people watching. And people watching is what I did.
I could go into all the lurid details of the number of faux-hawks I counted, the church group made up of overweight teens, many of which were sporting t-shirts which stated "it's about something bigger than me". The women pushing children older than my daughter (7) around the park in strollers. The smoking pregnant woman, with a sleeping toddler on her hip....
What stuck with me throughout the day was the idea of "fat and happy." This led me to thinking about all that is right - and wrong - with this statement.
Fat and happy is good, right? It's how we describe babies who are healthy, alert, thriving. It's the evidence that all the basic needs are being met, and then some.
In Learning Economics, Arnold Kling has a section "Growth, Technological Progress, and Decentralized Innovation." Kling opens the section with this quote from Brad DeLong
The 7,500 calories in today's bag of flour would equal the diet of a four-person peasant family for a whole day; the difference is that it would take three days of medieval work to afford.Three days of work, just to survive 500 years ago. And now? For far less than three days worth of work, the families at the park were able to pick up those same 7,500 calories, and more, in all manner of batter dipped, deep fried, sugary goodness, in between hurtling around corkscrew roller coasters and getting soaked on the log flume. Those people weren't just "getting by." They were celebrating, relaxing, bonding with friends and family. Sounds great, doesn't it?
...By the bags-of-flour standard, we are some 430 times wealthier than our typical rural ancestors of half a millennium ago.
I know there's an argument to be made here about the numbers who were paying with money they don't have, for things they don't need. That, and the over consumption of calories are the dark side of my fat and happy thoughts.
Eating lunch from concessions was a bit tough. It's also a testament to how ingrained my diet changes have become. The portions were huge, the vegetables almost non-existant. I ended up splitting a corn dog (foot long-ugh!) with DD, and sharing a few chili cheese fries. She wanted a soda, so we split a 20 oz. (Rest of day was water for both of us.) I couldn't finish my food. The heavy batter and oil content, along with processed meat sat in my stomach like a lump. Other than my teenager, I don't think anyone finished a full lunch.
Looking around at other tables, I think we were one of a handful of families with that sort of trouble. Most of the burger, corndog, pizza, etc. wrappers being tossed were empty, and the cups were not of the 20 oz variety. They were 32 oz. and up.
During the afternoon snack rush, the ice cream, funnel cake and candy stands were packed. (The line for frozen lemonade was short, which suited us just fine.)
Some of the families lined up for snacks were looking fit and healthy. Most were on the heavyset to overweight side, many well on the way to morbidly obese. I understand the biological imperative we have stored away in our genetic programming. Eat. Save up the fat stores you need for the when there isn't enough, for the lean times.
Given the abundance of cheap calories available, how big a fat store does the average American really need? With the rise of obesity-related health issues and all the money being made in the weight loss industry, "fat and happy" isn't all that happy anymore.
Thursday, August 21, 2008
This photo was taken a couple weeks after my braces were removed, two years ago. I wiped the board clean and added snarky messages about, well, anything really, to email friends and family. I resurrected it today, in honor of my first full day with my lower teeth back in traction.* Ugh. (Wear your retainers, kids.)
My pre ride (40-mile) food? Oatmeal. My post ride recovery? Latte.
My lunch? Soup. Biting the potato chunks in the delicious Curry Corn Chowder hurt.
I give up. I'm embracing the martini. With cheese stuffed olives, to cover my vegetable & protein needs. I won't actually be eating the olives, as the act of biting through them will drive me to tears.
*The sentiment expressed on the board above could also apply to my opinion of the bills for B1's braces, and the upcoming round of bills for B2's adorable little buck-toothed smile.
I picked up a Ruff Wear leash at Big Peach Running a while back. Between this and the bag/clip, running with Pete is a breeze. (Getting him to look at the camera? Not so breezy.) I snap him around my waist, and my hands are free to carry water, swat mosquitoes, change songs on the iPod, etc.
The main section of the leash is elastic, so there's a warning before a complete stop, or squirrel-chasing dash, yanks me off my feet. And, there's a split closer to him, so I can grab Pete and reign him in when we're passing other dogs and people. (He's not at all unfriendly, just big. He makes some people and little dogs nervous.)
One note of caution about running with one of these leashes: if you open your mouth to laugh at your big dumb dog as he runs around you in a circle while you are running at 6+ mph, be careful. You will have left yourself vulnerable to the elusive Assassin Moth. This moth will fly past you at the moment you inhale, causing you to choke, gag, and trip over a rock or tree root. Hopefully, you'll be able to cough out this menace before he causes anything beyond damaged pride... or maybe you'll only cough up half, like I did. *shudder*
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
3.4 miles, 33:53, without a single walk break. That's a new record for me.
I'd throw a big celebration, by which I mean buy myself a giant latte, but will settle for loud music and an open sunroof on the way to the dentist. Old filling replacement, followed by a trip down the street to the Orthodontist for four months worth of torture devices for my lower jaw. (Invisalign)
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Monday: 27.3 miles, bike
Tuesday: 4.3 miles, easy run
Wednesday: 2 miles, easy run; flat tire
(no group ride while I was learning how to change tube)
Thursday: 2.74 miles, hill run; 6 miles, bike - commute
Friday: 17.6 miles, bike
Sunday: 30.2 miles, group ride - road
Total: Run - 9 miles; Bike - 81.1 miles
Eeek! This does not at all look like half marathon training. I'm working on getting more miles on my shoes this week, and a few less on my bike. It was just soooo pretty last week, and the kids were in school during the late mornings, and Bloo was looking all forlorn, in his spot by the window... I had to take him out for a spin.
Following the rules I used for the first two weeks, here's the breakdown:
Trip 1: $27.28
Trip 2: $56.03
Trip 3: $37.66
Week 3 Total: $120.97
Week 1 List
Week 1 Meals
Week 2 List
Week 2 Meals
Sunday, August 17, 2008
He is only in his mid thirties.
He's going to be fine. Stints were put in place. Medication, exercise, and better eating habits are being set up.
I look at this as a major wake up call for DH and his cronies. The guy with the heart attack was the youngest out of the gang. I'd think this would trigger alarm bells for others.
In talking with DH last night, he said "Nah, nothing to change. Nobody eats, drinks and lives like he does. I don't eat that much junk, I don't drink that much, and sure, I need more exercise, but I'm already working on that."
DH is almost 10 years older than his friend. He may live healthier now, but he hasn't always. I can count the number of doctor visits over the decade I've known him on one hand. The last visit was five years ago.
Healthier living now will help with the future, but what if there was already something wrong when we started making changes? What if he needs to do more?
He's not a kid. I can't take away video games or bribe him with ice cream to get him to the doctor for a long overdue physical.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
This is something I need. Really have to build up my confidence in navigating streets. I do ride around on Roswell and Abernathy Roads here in Sandy Springs, but I try to go during off peak hours. Even when I can get close to my destination on the neighborhood streets, I still have to finish up the last bit of most trips somewhere along major streets.
It's getting close to my couple of busy months of fall projects, mostly travel & tourism pieces. My two biggest clients are within 3-5 miles of the house. Would love to be able to stick proofs in my backpack and be my own bicycle courier without being paranoid about those 4-lane roads.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Only around six miles today on the bike, but they were risking-my-life-in-lunchtime-traffic miles. The temps were in the low 80s today, so I swapped out my loafers for SPDs and headed out for errands and meeting in street clothes. Rolled up my left pant leg, tossed my cardigan in the backpack with the items destined for UPS, and headed out.
I'm so used to making trips around Sandy Springs on my heavy, slow hybrid. It was really nice to take the hills on Bloo. (Blooregard Q. Kazoo, named by my children for Bloo of Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends.)
The drivers around me didn't give me quite the space they do on Patty (Peppermint Patty, also named by children.) I guess the lack of a front-mount basket helped me look a bit more... competent? Less accident prone? It's also possible I just looked like a serious commuter today, just a regular part of traffic.
My only complaint was the complete lack of bicycle racks. Or anything suitable for locking up Bloo. I don't mind using something other than a rack. But the 4-6' wide brick pillar is a bit beyond the stretch of my cable or chain. It wasn't all that bad; both the UPS Store and Starbucks (meeting location) were quite friendly when I wheeled my buddy through the door.
I attempted to catch a picture using the self-timer feature. It's not easy to get situated in 5 seconds when a bike's involved, so I'm not sure if any of the shots are useful. If I did get something decent, I'll post. Hopefully, I didn't cut myself in half while running across the carport each time.
Edit: this will have to do. I look like a complete dork, but at least I'm not sticking out my tongue, closing my eyes, or midway through swinging my leg over the seat. And, my goodness, the angle on the bike adds about 15 lbs. - I suddenly like all those horrible running photos from races a whole lot more.
And, I'm really glad I had the cardigan for the meeting. The air conditioning was extra chilly after the ride. (That, and I'm not one to run around in just a camisole top, generally speaking.)
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
So much for tonight's 20 mile ride. Since today was an impromptu rest day, I'll be having a multi-sport day tomorrow.
On a good note, I think I can change a tire now. Hope so.
Just in case the weather doesn't cooperate with plans for a 20+ mile this evening, I took Peter T. Dog out this morning for a lope. It rained most of last night, and everything is cool, damp, and lush. The kudzu is in bloom, adding the exotic scent of grape kool-aid to the air.
It was our very own, not-so-tropical, rainforest run.
Picked this little gem up from Dr. J at Calorie Lab.
A former olympic athlete has been banned from a department store in the UK, for running up the down escalator. What makes this snippet a gem?
I'm inspired! But, I think I ought to keep my goal of getting in trouble for kid stunts in my senior years to myself. Not sure I should let my kids hear I'm planning to be a juvenile delinquent when I grow up.
You see, Mr. Hildreth just celebrated his 80th birthday, and unlike his previousathletic accomplishments, his celebratory behavior was not looked at favorably! At least not by the owners of Elphicks department store in Farnham, Surrey, where he decided to run up the down escalator to celebrate the event!
“‘I did it to celebrate my 80th birthday and it took me about six weeks to crack it,” he said, quite satisfied with his run!
It all started this past summer when Peter was making his daily visit to Elphicks, and was going up the escalator to their coffee shop. “It reminded me of 50 years ago, when I used to run up the escalators in London for a bit of a lark,” he said.
When asked about his training, he said, “It’s best to begin in little bits, so you start by coming down — say about five or six steps — then turn around and sprint to the top. And then gradually increase it.
“The most difficult bit is getting on at the bottom, because the bottom steps are constantly moving towards you and disappearing.”
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Breakfasts: homemade oatmeal muffins, pancakes, or cereal and fruit.
Lunch: Grilled cheese or peanut butter & honey (or jelly) sandwiches, served with grapes, apples or carrots. One day, it was pure junk food. B2 had a cavity taken care of late last week, and really wanted ABCs & 123s w/meatballs for lunch. Since he couldn't feel one side of his mouth, I indulged the desire for comfort food.
Snacks: Nuts, cheese crackers, grapes at home - granola bars or peanut butter pretzels and apples at the pool.
Dinners: (Where two separate meals were fixed, I've specified the kid/adult version)
Burgers (Bean for me, Beef for everyone else), Roasted Potatoes, Salad
Baked Chicken, Broccoli, Cornbread (Kid)
Shakshuka, Cornbread (Adult)
Teriyaki Chicken Skewers, Rice, Green Beans; with Mango/Avocado Salad (Adult)
Brown Rice Penne with Zucchini, Vidalia, Spinach, Garlic, Grape Tomatoes and Turkey Sausage (made using gr. turkey not turned into burgers last week)
Grilled Cheese Sandwiches, Veggie Baked Beans, Apples (Kid)
Leftover Pasta and a Salad (Adult)
BBQ Chicken (Kids) Grilled Salmon (Adult), Couscous, Corn, Cucumber/Onion/Tomato Salad
Pho Bo (Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup) w/ Garlic & Basil Meatballs (made a double batch - half the meatballs were popped in freezer for later), Salad
Week 2 Shopping Lists
Week 1 Shopping Lists
Week 1 Meals
Monday: 3-miles, easy run
Tuesday: Rest (walking w/kids)
Wednesday: 12.5-miles, bike
Thursday: 4-miles, trail run
Saturday: Dinosaur Dash 5k (31:17 - P.R.)
Sunday: 6-miles, tandem ride
Total: Run - 10.1 miles; Bike - 18.5 miles
Was finally over the head cold last week , but found my time and energy used up in the back-to-school chaos. This week, with all the dentist trips, school shopping and registration completed, my training schedule gets back up to the recommended times and distances on the chart.
Saturday, August 09, 2008
I think I was under 31:30, which makes for a P.R. B1 was roughly 40 mins. He started out really fast. Too fast. I passed him not long after the first mile marker. It was his first race, and he didn't want to listen to any advice from his mom. Next time, I think he'll do better at pacing.
D. finished the 1k in 6:40, give or take a few seconds. B2 crossed the finish line about one minute later.
I'll have to take a look at the official times and race photos when they become available. Until then, this shot was taken after the races, and does almost as good a job at making us look cranky/crazy. (We're facing the sun.)
Following the rules I set up earlier, here's the breakdown:
Trip 1: $68.15
Trip 2: $19.57
Trip 3: $36.93
Week 1 Total: $124.65
When I first looked over my receipts, I thought I'd failed this week. Was over by less than $1 - Aaack! While typing everything up this morning, my totals didn't match. I noticed I missed a pack of pencils when I was removing the non-grocery items. After making sure I'd pulled out all of the back-to-school supplies, I was back under. (And there was much celebrating.)
Little higher this week than last, but still under budget. Even managed to take care the special requests. The Organic Pink Lady Apples weren't available for my fans of New Zealand produce, but I did grab a couple of large Sonya apples from the far corner of the globe. If you see them in the store - get one - or a dozen. They are crisp and sweet, but not too sweet. The perfect apple for a hot day, or any day. Tonight we'll be having BBQ Salmon (kids are having chicken), which takes care of special request number two.
Thursday, August 07, 2008
Total: Run, 4.9 miles; Bike, 17 miles
I won't be completely back up to speed this week, but I'm getting there.
On a tandem tangent, the camera goofed up saving the picture of my daughter and me from Sunday. The jpeg was missing data, but the posterized effect was kinda fun.
I know. Whine, whine, whine.
This week, I'm on the upswing. Monday's run was okay. I'm a little faster than the last time I ran that particular route. About three minutes faster. Not bad.
Wednesday's bike ride was cut short by pop-up storm, not by exhaustion. The 12.5 miles I rode were at a 17+ mph pace. Even better.
It rained this afternoon, not long before my run. There were more storm cells on the horizon. I considered driving to the Y for a treadmill run. Rush hour traffic? Not high on my To Do list. As I started to tick off the reasons I couldn't/shouldn't climb in the car, something clicked. I switched to my older shoes, sprayed myself head to toe with bug repellent, and headed to the trails near my house. I took off at what felt like an easy pace. 8:00 running, 2:00 recovery.
Beep. Run. Beep. Walk.
No stress. No glancing at my HRM, looking for the next break. I negotiated tree roots, dangling briar and kudzu vines, leapt over muddy patches. Climbed through a couple of young trees which had partially fallen across the path. Kept going. The sound of my shoes hitting the graveled portions of the trail were in perfect time with the music. It was beautiful.
As I headed back for the car, I realized I could have managed an extra loop. Didn't want to push it. When I opened the truck door and reached for my water, I glanced at my HRM.
I had an average pace of 9:32, over four miles. Temps in the upper 80s, thick air, none of it mattered. It was a good day, a very good day. Today, I was not the bug.
I'm looking forward to more days like this.
Sunday, August 03, 2008
Breakfasts: homemade oatmeal muffins, or cereal and fruit.
Lunch: Grilled cheese or peanut butter & honey (or jelly) sandwiches, served with grapes, apples or carrots.
Snacks: Nuts, cheese crackers, grapes at home - granola bars or peanut butter pretzels on the trail
Dinners: (Where two separate meals were fixed, I've specified the kid/adult version)
Creamy/Cheese Pasta, Broccoli (Brown Rice Fusilli)Today was supposed to be burgers (black bean for me, beef for everyone else), with corn and salad. We ended up switching to cheese pizza, which worked out very well. Was able to finish off the leftover French Onion Soup on the side. And, I have a quick dinner already planned for the first day of Week 2. (Bonus!)
Turkey Burgers, Veggie Baked Beans, Sliced Apples (Kid)
Mango, Avacado & Celery Salad w/Cashews and Ginger Dressing (Adult)
Oven Roasted Chicken, Potatoes, Green Beans & Cornbread (Kid)
Vidalia French Onion Soup & Cheesy Cornbread (Adult)
Black Bean Salad w/Mango & Salsa, Cornbread
Chicken Fried Rice (w/leftover chicken), Broccoli
Chicken, Green Beans, Cheese Whole Wheat Biscuits (Kid)
Shakshuka and Cheese Biscuits (Adult)
(The recipe used when I started making Shakshuka is here. I've modified it over the last two years, of course. More garlic, and sweet onions)
Cheese Pizza and Vidalia French Onion Soup (Leftover)
I talked with everyone over lunch today. Nobody really noticed any difference. The kids thought I was just asking which dinners they wanted me to repeat this week. It's been a pretty good reminder for me as to why planning meals a few days in advance is a good idea. We didn't have to sacrifice much. Still had ice cream after dinner a few nights, and the beloved peanut butter filled pretzels to snack on during our weekend bike rides.
This week might be a little tougher. I noticed while working on dough earlier, I'm running low on a few baking supplies. I've also had a request for BBQ salmon, and for organic pink lady apples (from New Zealand - my kids think pink ladies from this part of the globe are not as good - yes, my kids are special), which I think I can work in with a bit more planning.
Saturday, August 02, 2008
Following the rules I set up earlier, here's the breakdown:
Trip 1: $35.15
Trip 2: $41.32
Trip 3: $27.50
Week 1 Total: $103.97
Friday, August 01, 2008
I'm pretty excited about the 10k. I was looking for something the first two weeks of September. Trouble is, that's not exactly cool fall weather here in Atlanta. Then, through Run & See Georgia, I found the Midnight Flight Race in Anderson, SC.
The 10k race starts at 11:00 p.m.
This. Is. Awesome.
I don't have to get up early. I get to sleep in the next morning. And there's the whole not running in the glaring heat of the sun, too. I'll head up Friday afternoon to pick up my number and get checked into the hotel. Yep, hotel. Remember that "sleep in" benefit of the midnight race? Woo Hoo!
I'd like to finish the midnight race by 12:00, but will be quite happy with any time before 12:04, as this would best my Possum Trot 10k time by more than one minute.
Things I will not be hearing Saturday morning, after the race:
"Mom, can I play Halo?"
"What's for breakfast, Mom?"
"Mom, I don't want to play Halo - make him pick something else."
"I don't want cereal! Can't you make bacon and eggs... and pancakes?"
"No video games! I want SpongeBob.... MOM!"
"Can we have chocolate chip pancakes?"