30 March 2011

In Search of Spring Fun

This week my kids are out of school for spring break.  We didn't make any plans to go do anything spectacular like to go Mexico, so day by day we just play it by ear and find something to do.  Yesterday I promised the kids a trip to the park.  It was raining of course but I didn't want that to stop us.  We may never leave the house if that was the case!  I encouraged, suggested and explained why they should wear boots on their feet.  It would be wet.  And muddy.  Did I mention it is raining?  Have you looked outside? 

I put on my rain boots.  Devan put on her old sneakers.  Niko put on his Vans.  As we headed out the door I double checked- are you SURE you are dressed the way you think is best???  Yes mom.  We are sure.  Ok children.  What do I know anyways???  But I believe in allowing them to make their own choices- that is how you learn right?  I think next time they might take my advice.  Maybe.

Thirty seconds after we arrived Niko slipped going down the grass hill and got all wet and muddy.  Both of the kids had wet muddy feet within 5 minutes.  I really wanted to say "I told you so" but then I remembered I am supposed to be the adult.  To their credit, they didn't complain about their wet feet.  Niko did fall one more time and at that point was muddy pretty much from head to toe.  But the flowers were in bloom, and the ducks were cute!  There was even a turtle out on one of the rocks.  I love turtles. 

I have always loved taking pictures.  Photography class was something that was always on my "to do" list- it just never happened for some reason.  I love a great picture and how it can tell a story or conjure up a fond memory, taking you back to a different time.  Or it can simply be something beautiful to look at.  Or just a way to enhance a story (which is how I tend to use my photos).  I wouldn't really call taking pictures a hobby of mine, but it is something I enjoy doing and care about enough to try to improve the quality of the ones I DO take.  Because really, if something is worth doing its worth doing well right?  A friend of mine helped me out a lot by explaining many of the functions on my camera as well as some of the basics to capturing a good photo.  He even did an entire blog post explaining how to use MY camera specifically.  Thanks Ken!  He takes amazing photos- you can check out his blog here:  http://www.razorsharpinsights.blogspot.com/

So here are some photos I took yesterday of our "spring fun" in the mud!

Isn't that tree cool looking?  We were down at Point Defiance Park in Tacoma, WA in case you are wondering.  I hope it doesn't rain the entirety of our spring break...but if it does at least we know we won't melt!  I completed a 3 mile run yesterday which put me at 92 miles ran for the month of March so far.  I signed up for a challenge to run 93 miles in March over on daily mile with Tall Mom so I am going to surpass that today- and end up with 103 for the month by tomorrow! 

28 March 2011

So Close!!

My long run scheduled over the weekend was a 13 miler.  It seemed silly to run that far and not tack on the extra .1 in order to make it a half marathon- it would be only the 4th time I have ran that far, ever.  But I wanted to see how I was improving on my speed and be able to compare it to my other half marathon times.  That being said, I didn't set out trying to break any speed barriers either, I just wanted to run as fast as I comfortably could while still pushing myself. 

The weather was of course unpredictable.  It was raining and also on the chilly side so I opted for shorts and my running jacket.  I chose my Merrell Pace Gloves for shoes.  I had not run farther than 6 miles in them so I was a little bit nervous, however my knee was starting to feel a bit sensitive and these shoes would be the best option for protecting it.  They keep me on my toes with a quick, light step and my knee never bothers me after I wear them (or my VFF's for that matter).  But still, running a half marathon in them was a bit risky- but in the end were a great choice.  My calves are STILL sore today, but my knee feels fantastic.  I will take sore muscles over a sore knee any day! 

My route took me from my house down the road to Wright Park.  I ran around the trail there 4 times then headed back towards my house.  I was at 10 miles by the time I got near my house.  I stopped for a quick minute to check my time, distance and take my energy gel.  It was then that I realized how close I was to finishing the run under 2 hours.  Although at that point I would have had to run my last 3 miles at 8 minutes each and I knew it wasn't really going to happen...but I was going to try and see how close I could get anyways!  Final time for my training run half marathon- 2:02:29 for a pace of 9:20.  My last mile was done in 8:40, which I think is pretty cool.  And if it is worth mentioning...part of it was up a hill!  My last three half marathon times were 2:13, 2:10 and 2:14 so that is huge for me...without even really trying!

When I got home I decided to try taking an ice bath.  So Tiffany, how did you like the ice bath you ask???  It was COLD (duh) but it was mostly terrible and I didn't like it at all.  Until my legs were completely numb, at which point I finally stopped shrieking and relaxed for a few minutes.  Then it felt ok, but I am not 100% convinced the benefit I got out of it was worth the ordeal.  Somebody tell me that it is totally worth it and the next time it won't be so horrible...anybody?  Actually, I would probably be happier if somebody told me they do nothing and I should never stick the lower half of my body in ice cold water willingly again.

Yesterday I went to the gym for some cross training.  I swam for about 20 minutes, which somehow felt harder than running for 2 hours, then sat in the spa for a bit.  I also went in the steam room to stretch my muscles out.  Today I finally got my yoga fix in.  We did a lot of deep stretching through the hips and quads which felt really good, and also a lot of plank/core work.  Last week I ended up running 26 miles in 5 days.  Now I just need to figure out how to do that all in one day instead!

I am also attempting a mini goal for the week- eat an entire bag of costco broccoli!  I forget how much I love this vegetable...mostly because I am not a big fan of it raw and I am too lazy to steam it sometimes.  But I got this fancy new rice cooker that also has a steamer basket to make my life easier.  And my broccoli more delicious!

25 March 2011

My Pretty Piggies

Today I decided it was time to give my feet some TLC.  They definitely take a beating with all of my running and soccer.  I also managed to drop part of a mop bucket on my left foot this week (ouch) which created a lovely bruise.  So I decided to do a foot soak, scrub and repolish.  It felt really good, but was not nearly as relaxing as I had hoped.  I was interrupted about 12 times and had to explain to both children and my husband what I was doing and why.  Next time I plan on making a sign and locking the door!!  I think I read about 3 paragraphs in my beloved book the whole 20 minutes I was soaking.  Oh well, it still felt nice to pretty up my ugly piggies!

My feet prior to their makeover

All pretty!  Well, about as good as they get!
My funny story for the week- yesterday at the gym I was running on the treadmill after my boxing class.  My ear buds never stay in properly so I reached up to push them in more securely.  Well, as I brought my arms back down to get back to proper form I hit the cord leading to my ipod.  Which sent it up in the air then straight down onto the treadmill.  The back popped off and my ipod shot off the back of the mill.  Luckily I was coordinated enough to just gracefully hop off, retrieve my player, hook it back up and keep running.    Yes, just wanted to be the entertainment at the gym for the day -you are all very welcome. 

23 March 2011

Addicted to Sunshine!

Spring is finally here!  Today was an absolutely beautiful day in Tacoma.  Blue skies, the temperature was around 60 degrees and just a light breeze.  I was really glad that I had the day off from work and was planning a 6 mile run in the afternoon!  And get this one- I actually wore a TANK TOP to run in and my running skirt with my new compression shorts underneath.  And my new running hat which I am loving (although I think I look like a dork in a hat, but whatever) kept the sun off of my face perfectly.  I was not too hot or too cold the entire run and the sun felt sooo good.  Nothing like a good dose of Vitamin D to go with your runner's high right??? 

I ran down on the waterfront and it was really busy down there.  Which is kind of cool because it means lots of people took advantage of our nice weather, but dodging dogs and strollers and skate boarders was an added challenge that didn't really occur to me.  Oh well, I had the added bonus of people watching while I ran!  I originally had planned to attempt an 8-8:30ish pace, but once I started running I could feel that was not going to happen.  My legs were heavy and for some reason my breathing was not that great either.  So I adjusted and decided to just keep it under 9 as best as I could.  Total time was 53:26 for a pace of 8:53.  Not too shabby.  I had also done a boxing class a few hours earlier at the gym so maybe that contributed to my heavy legs.

Some things I am addicted to right now:   sunshine, kiwis, strawberries, peanut butter, tomato soup, dove promises dark chocolates with almonds (what?  they have cute little sayings inside!), magazines, books about running, foam rollers, running, scrabble, coffee and Adele's new CD (which I play a minimum of 2 times every shift I work). 

I also forgot to mention what happened to me last Friday at soccer.  Now I am fully aware that playing the keeper position on a coed adult league is probably not the ideal position for a girl to play.  Guys definitely kick the ball hard, and some girls do as well and it is my job to stop the ball with my body parts.  I get that, and for the most part feel like I do a decent job considering I just kind of said "hey, I am going to play goalie" and then got in the box without any sort of practice.  People tell me I do a good job, including the other teams so I guess at the very least I don't suck at it! 

So last Friday the team we were playing were short on some players and we had some extras so we gave them 4 people, one of which was my good pal Ray.  He tends to get a bit frantic when he has the ball and his main objective was to score a goal on me.  Which he did (twice I think) and then about 8 minutes into the second half of the game Ray comes down towards me, gets the ball and just hoofs it right towards my face.  I put my hands up but the ball sailed through and basically clocked me square in the jaw.  I believe I yelled something along the lines of "Ray I am going to kick your ass later!" 

Darrell (the ref) asked if I was ok so I did a quick check for blood since it felt like I had bit my lip really hard.  It seemed like I was fine so I told him to play.  Then all of a sudden a headache set over me and I realized that my jaw felt misaligned and HURT really bad.  I don't like to be a wimp so I tried to just suck it up but it was actually messing with my vision so I figured I should probably get out of the goal box.  Jaime took over for me and I took some ibuprofren and ended up having a good cry session.  I just couldn't help it, the tears would not stop!  Ugh, I hate crying in front of people.  Once I got myself under control I did what anyone else would do- went out to play the field a bit!  I couldn't just sit and watch the last 10 minutes of the game!  Overall we had a tied up game 7-7.

I have never in my life been hit so hard like that in the face.  I think I saw stars and my jaw hurt up until yesterday.  How in the world do boxers stand to feel like that all the time?  Ray told me I should stop being keeper.  I told him he should work on his aim a little bit.  Why would you kick it straight at the goalie?  At least I stopped the ball - even if it was with my FACE!    

21 March 2011

Sharing is Not Always a Good Thing

Love this little tunnel along the bike trail!
Today I am missing my yoga class for the first time since I started going a couple of months ago.  And I was probably looking forward to it more than usual because my muscles are a bit tight still from my long run on Saturday.  So why am I missing my class???  Because the first words out of each of the kids mouths this morning were "my tummy hurts".  Uh oh.  However, that explains a lot.  Let me back up to Saturday.

Saturday I had a 12 mile run scheduled.  It was the longest distance I had ran since September 26th when I ran my last half marathon.  Nearly 6 months ago!  Holy cow.  Niko had a basketball game at 10am so I got up, had some breakfast then we all headed to the YMCA for his game.  When we got home I was mentally preparing for my run, getting my gear together and making sure I was dressed appropriately for the weather.  It was a beautiful sunny day, although the weather forecast called for rain by 1pm (I would still be out running at that point).  My new running hat arrived so I decided to wear that to keep the sun out of my eyes since I have yet to find a pair of sunglasses for running.  I opted for shorts, a tshirt and my running jacket.  I brought along my music this time and also my water bottle and some Gu Chomps instead of a gel packet thinking that I could eat half around mile 6 and the rest at mile 9.

Niko loves basketball.  On most days.  And yes, this is the shirt I was wearing in my previous post!
 I left my house intending to run out 6 miles then turn around and run back.  That is my favorite way to do a long run, there is no better feeling than reaching halfway and knowing that all you have to do is retrace your steps!  I headed down the bike path that runs along side Hwy 16- past Tacoma Boys, Target and Cheney Stadium.  My path ended when I was at mile 5.  Bummer.  I kept running a bit through the neighborhood I ended up in.  It seemed like an ok area until I saw a sign that said "welcome to hilltop" and a white pickup drove past me and honked.  I realized I was maybe a bit vulnerable at that point (not really knowing where I was) and turned around to head back to my trail.  I would make up that extra mile once I arrived back near my house.  I started feeling hungry and a little bit sluggish around mile 8.  Mile 11 was really difficult, and my slowest mile -9:54, out of all of them.  I managed to push through it and finish mile 12 at a 9:13 pace. 

My overall time for 12 miles was 1:54 which I am happy with.  It was a 9:29 pace on average and is definitely faster than any of my past runs exceeding 10 miles.  When I got back home I did not feel good at all.  I drank my "recovery" drink and tried to eat some food.  My stomach was not too happy with me and I ate slowly knowing I needed to get some nutrients in me anyways.  I ended up laying down and napping for about an hour.  When I woke up I still felt terrible and ended up just laying around the whole rest of the day.  I was frustrated with myself, thinking it was something I had done wrong while preparing for my run- not eating enough or not drinking enough...it had to be something!  I had never felt this horrible after a long run.  And I definitely wanted to figure it out and correct it so it never happened again.

Fast forward to this morning...the kids have belly aches.  Aaaahhhh...it most likely wasn't my long run at all!  I must have had some sort of 24 hour bug.  Which I apparently shared with the kids...oops.  Usually it is the other way around.  Actually, I so rarely get sick that it didn't even occur to me that was a possibility.  So in hindsight it is a miracle I even completed that long run at all, let alone in a pretty decent time!

No photos today- for one, today I can't figure out how to get my pictures off of my iphone (even though last time I did it easily) and for two- I don't have the energy considering I have had Niko plastered to me for the last several hours.  Poor kiddo.  I know just how he feels.  Pretty yucky.

**Update** The kids are feeling much better tonight, and my computer decided to upload my photos! 

16 March 2011

Speedy Me???

So after my race last weekend I started looking at the times of my other 3 mile runs.  Not one of them was even close to the 25 minute mark!  So how is it that I magically ran faster than I ever have during a race??  So on Tuesday I thought I would do a check and see if I could do it again.  I managed to do a 3 mile run in 25:09!  My splits were 8:50, 8:26 and 7:50!  So I guess the answer is yes, I am capable of running faster than I usually do.  I am trying to wrap my brain around this new information. 

I guess I am trying to figure out when this happened.  Is it because of the added cross training?  Is it the minimalist shoe I have embraced?  Is it completely mental?  I am sure it is a combination of many different factors but I am fascinated by it.  Suddenly I have become kind of...quick!  I am not exactly a speed demon, but being able to pull off a 7:50 mile for me is AWESOME!!! 

It could also be because ever since I injured my knee last spring I am very cautious with my speed workouts.  I know that going too fast, too far, too soon is what causes injuries and I have had my fair share.  Knee, quad, ankle, other knee...and I absolutely dread that happening again.  But I have not had one twinge of pain while using my new lineup of shoes.  And believe me, I am in tune with my body.  I ask it every night how it is doing.  And it assures me it feels just fine.  Although the people at the gym probably think I am having an affair with their foam roller.  I might be just a smidge obsessed with it.  It is just so much better than the one I have at home!  I ordered one just like it, hopefully it will arrive this week. 

Today I had a 6 mile run scheduled.  I ran on the treadmill and did the first mile at 9:05 for a warm up then set it to 8:34 to finish it out.  I felt really good the whole time, and probably could have pushed a bit harder if I wanted but just let it be a comfortable pace.  That's right-  8:34 is suddenly a comfortable pace for me.  So my results of the 6 mile run- total time 52:05 for a pace of 8:40.  And I felt sweaty and perfect when I was done.  Speedy me!

12 March 2011

I'm a Happy Leprechaun!

Ready to run! 
The very first race I ever signed up for was the St Patty Day Run Tacoma last year.  I was training for a half marathon and figured it would be a good idea to get some sort of race experience before the big day arrived- and it looked like it would be a fun run.  I ran it with Cynthia, Jaime and Tiana and we dressed up in lots of cute green stuff and had a good run.  I learned a lot from that race such as how to pin on a race bib, tie on a chip timer and what to wear.  We also learned the hard way that getting as far forward as possible is a great idea when there are over 1,500 runners- we couldn't even start running for quite a while that day.  Kind of like herding cattle.  Anyways, it was a great first race and of course I had to run it again this year.  My first repeat race!!!!
Last years race!  Jaime, me and Cynthia.  Tiana is MIA.
Well, I woke up this morning at the lovely hour of 6:45am and looked outside...guess what it was doing?  Pouring rain, not that I would have expected anything else really!  I had a quick breakfast consisting of an almond butter and strawberry preserves sandwich and a dopio espresso to get me going.  Then went in and got decked out in my spiffy outfit, complete with new running skirt and awesome knee high socks for the occasion.  I didn't bother with any of the stickers I got- I assume they would have just made a mess out in the downpour anyways.  Tied a few ribbons in my hair and pinned some butterflies on my jacket (in honor of my missing buddy Cynthia-my first race without her- who loves butterflies).  And I was ready to hit the road! 
Hanging out in the rain waiting for mom.  love the chipmunk cheeks on Niko!
Will and the kids came down for support and we also picked up our friend Brian who was also running.  We found parking relatively easily (a miracle) and headed towards the starting line.  Did I mention that I had a scheduled 7 miler today?  And the race was a 5K?  Time to do some math!  No worries, I had a plan all figured out.  I did a quick 1 mile warm up before the race started and then ended up way too far back in the crowd at the starting gun.  DANG IT!  I had to do some fancy maneuvering and probably made some people mad cutting through the crowd, but seriously- its a race people- RUN!  I couldn't believe all the people walking up the very first hill! 
I should have been up here.  Instead I am pretty sure I was still behind the start line!  Darn.
Once I got into a decent stride it was game on.  I had my garmin and I was planning to keep around an 8:30 pace at the slowest.  My goal was to be in the 26 minute range.  I kept checking and it kept saying 7:57 or 7:45...but the pace felt ok so I just held it as long as I could.  I ended up pacing with a group of guys for most of the race.  I figured if I could keep up with them I was doing pretty good!  My mile splits- 7:53, 8:09 and 8:16!  And amazingly it felt pretty good, I was definitely breathing hard at the end but I recovered really quickly, took a quick picture and headed off to do the rest of my 3 miles!  Total distance for the morning was 7 miles in 1:03.
The finish line is near!

My stats:
Time:  25:02   Pace: 8:05
Overall:  210/1607
Female/My age group:  14/196
Female overall:  52/1,064

Brian and I all finished!  With the race anyways- I still had some miles to go!
Ok, NOW I am done with my 7 miles!
Wet girls after hours in the rain!
My time last year was 29:58.  I guess that would make this a new PR!  I am very happy with my progress as a runner.  I have come a long way in one year!  I also played a soccer game last night, I played goalie for the first half but I was missing running the field so I played the second half.  And I scored a goal!  The team we played is new to our league but they had all strong players and were pretty aggressive.  We held our own but still lost 6-10.  Well, the end of my 6th week of training is tomorrow.  That means I am 1/3 of the way trained up for my marathon!!! 

I was thinking Niko's shirt would make a good goalie shirt...maybe not.  But check out those guns!

09 March 2011

All The Cool Kids Are Doing It

Well, I keep seeing this on the blogs I stalk read so here goes.  The ABC's of this runner girl!

(A) Age:  33

(B) Bed Size:  King- I am a wiggler and need my space!

(C) Chore You Hate:  Putting away laundry and folding socks

(D) Dogs?:  A black lab/great dane mix named Casey.  He is 3 1/2 and we love him.  He weighs about 90 pounds and thinks he is a lap dog sometimes.  He can also create bruises with his tail if he is really excited.

(E) Essential Start Your Day Item:  Coffee and facebook.  Don't judge, you know you do it too.

(F) Favorite Color:  Purple.  And Blue. 

(G) Gold or Silver? Silver.  I like gold too.  Yes, I wear both at the same time. 

(H) Height: 5' 3 (and 3/4) I am a shorty.  But my feet are about a 9.5 so I think I was meant to be taller!!!

(I) Instruments You Play:  I can kick some butt at guitar hero.  and that is about it.

(J) Job Title: Shift Supervisor

(K) Kids: Devan (she is 8) and Niko (he is 5)

(L) Live: Tacoma, WA

(M) Mom's Name: Cindy

(N) Nicknames: T, Tiffo, T-dog, Tiff, Marathon girl, TT

(O) Overnight Hospital Stays? Just when I had the kids

(P) Pet Peeve: Lazy people

(Q) Quote from a Movie:  I am not a quote rememberer.  And if you tell me a joke, I will laugh and immediately not be able to retell it.  But if a customer I haven't seen for 3 years walks into my store I will likely remember what drink they will order.  My brain is weird. 

(R) Right or Left Handed? Definitely right

(S) Siblings: One younger brother Patrick

(T) Time You Wake Up? Weekdays- 7:30am, Saturdays usually around 7:30 or 8am, and Sundays at 4:45am for work.  The answer is yes, it freaks my body out every week!  Because my bedtime is always after 1130pm no matter what I do.   

(U) Underwear: hmmm.  yes I wear them.  I have enough to wear a different pair every day for over a month without doing laundry.  I think 99.999% of them are from VS.  And that is all you need to know about my undies!

(V) Vegetable You Dislike:  Eggplant has a weird texture to me

(W) What Makes You Run Late:  It doesn't take much really.  I am kind of a "right on time without a moment to spare" kind of person. 

(X) X-Rays You've Had Done:  Teeth and ultrasound if they even count?

(Y) Yummy Food You Make: I would like to think everything I make is yummy.  The kids tell me I make the best pancakes ever.  I made some fantastic grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup tonight.  I love to cook but I am usually at work during dinner time.  So my specialty these days is breakfast!

(Z) Zoo, Favorite Animal: I could watch the monkeys, gibbons, chimps all day long.  And the polar bears.

05 March 2011

That Was Rad

Beautiful view while I was running today!
 Today was definitely the best 10 mile run I have ever done.  I wore my new shoes, brought my new fancy iphone with me and felt awesome the whole run!  What an amazing feeling.  I even dressed perfectly for the beautiful weather we had, which is a miracle all by itself!  I wasn't too hot or too cold and everything was comfortable.  I also brought my handheld water bottle and a hammer gel along to keep hydrated and energized. 
About to head back over the bridge to Tacoma!
My course was from my house over the Tacoma Narrows Bridge and back, which is a tough run due to all of the hill work involved.  It was such a pretty day though and the views while running over the bridge are totally worth it!  Oh well, like I said before it doesn't matter where I go around here, there are hills in all directions so I may as well just get good at running up them!  I ended up running faster than I had intended, but my pace felt really good so I just kept at it.  My time was 1:33 for a 10 mile run which is about a 9:20 pace.  Fast for me! 

Mile 5.5- quick stop for a gel and attempt at taking my own photo!
I think my new shoes are to thank for that, they are extremely comfortable and encourage a light, quick mid to forefoot strike.  I bought the New Balance Minimus Road last week after much research.  I wanted something slightly cushioned yet still very lightweight and minimal.  I admit this was not my first choice but after trying them on and going for a quick jaunt in them down the sidewalk I was sold!  They rock.  LOVE THEM!
My awesome new shoes!

02 March 2011

Messing With My Head

I think our weather has become slightly schizophrenic over the last week.  I look out the window and its sunny.  Five minutes later there is hail.  Then a monsoon, maybe some snow.  Oh, there is the sun again!  And don't forget the wind!  Normally I don't really mind...variety is the spice of life right?  However, when it comes to selecting what to wear for outdoor running in such conditions...I am TERRIBLE!!! 

Last Saturday I was scheduled to run 9 miles.  My longest run since the You Go Girl half marathon all the way back on September 26th!  It was cold that day.  Really really cold.  So I decided to do my run towards the afternoon down on the waterfront where I was hoping the sidewalks would be mostly clear from all the snow/ice last week.  For some reason I decided to wear SHORTS, compression socks, a thermal running shirt and my Nike running jacket.  I also started off with a fleece hat and gloves but ditched those at mile 2 (they don't really breathe well and were feeling yucky).  Yes, my legs froze the entire time.  It was kind of like I iced them for the entire length of my run!  Pants would have been a much smarter option, I don't know what I was thinking.  I think it was like 25 degrees out.  Sorry legs! 

The run felt really good though, I didn't even listen to music.  Just ran for about an hour and a half with two popsicles for legs.  I had to alter my course a bit because the sidewalks were NOT cleared the direction I was headed but thanks to my handy dandy Garmin I still knew how many miles I logged.  Running on compact snow/ice is scary!  We also had a soccer game that night at 7:10pm so I ended up playing goalie the entire game.  Which was fine, I probably could have convinced my legs to run around a bit but they were happier to get a bit of rest.  We lost 5-7 but it was a really fun game!

This morning I went to the gym and did a heavy bag boxing class- complete with a mini leg workout at the end.  Then I headed home, refueled myself and again assessed the weather for my running conditions.  It was windy and a little bit cold, with rain showers off and on.  Ok...what to wear this time???  I picked my long running pants, a tech tshirt and my Nike running jacket.  I was planning to run the Wright Park trail so I grabbed my Vibram Treksports and also my cute new sweatyband headband.  On my way to drop Niko off the sun was out and no rain.  Took him into class, came out of the building...and it was POURING! 

I stopped at my car to drop off my purse and decide if I was going to wimp out and head to my wonderful treadmill at home instead.  Nope, I decided I was not a fair weather runner.  I was not going to melt, so off I walked to the trail.  I am not kidding, 30 seconds later the rain stopped and the sun came out.  My entire run was sunny and windy.  I was HOT.  Good grief.  The second I sat in my car at the end of my run it started pouring buckets of rain again!!!  I got really lucky I suppose.  Our weather is certifiably CRAZY!!!  It is messing with my head.  I don't know what to wear.  Am I the only one??? 

I did get some new running shoes yesterday and I am very excited about them.  I also have some that I ordered and will hopefully arrive soon.  I have been doing my homework and have selected these shoes to compliment my minimalist/barefoot style of running.  My Nike Free 7.0's are now officially retired for running.  So yes, I will have 3 different shoes that I alternate between and they will all serve their own special purpose.  Stay tuned...I am taking one of them for a short test run tomorrow!

I have also signed up for the www.stpattyruntacoma.com 5K race coming up on March 12th.  I went back and forth with this one because I am scheduled to do 7 miles that day, but I am going to make it work.  I would be mad at myself if I didn't run it- it was my very first race EVER last year!  I am excited to run it again just to see how far I have come in one year.