Wednesday, December 29, 2010

My year in review

My past two runs have been pretty uneventful.  Which is good right.  Sometimes no news is good news.  Anyway, I thought I would do a little review of my year.  So this year I ran my first half marathon in Sugarland, TX.

                                                                   Time: 2:01:56

Then I ran my first full marathon.  I ran the Austin marathon, which was a great race.  You can read my race report here.   Finishing time 5:01:31.

After that I went through a little bit of the post marathon blues.  Since my finishing time was much longer than I had planned for I also struggled with running and freaked out on a couple of runs.  That is until Jeff ripped my Garmin off me during a run, and said, "just run."  That helped, and I was ready to go again.  So after that I ran a couple more races.  The first one was with "the girl in the back seat"  We ran the Bayou City Classic 10k.  We had a great time.  Not my best time, but at least I was back out there.
                                                                    Time:  58:21
                                   I can't remember Ruth Ann's exact time, but it was a few minutes faster than mine!

Then it was on to the next race, the Astro's Race for the Pennant.  I did this one with Jeff, and our friends Elizabeth (who shortly after decided to train for the marathon with me), and her husband Jim.  It was May in Houston and EXTREMELY hot that day.  Jeff paced me, and I had my best 5k to date.

                                                                Time: 25:59

Then in July the training started all over again and myself, Ruth Ann, and Elizabeth decided to start training for the Houston Marathon.  We have had fun, been injured, overcome injuries and are still trucking along.  Along the way we have ran the San Antonio Rock-n-Roll half as part of our training.  All of us had a PR in this race, despite being stopped by a train!

                                                               Time: 1:55:32

After that race, Elizabeth, Jeff and I ran a turkey trot on Thanksgiving.  We had fun, but it was HOT for November and we all suffered a bit.  No picture for this one.

Ruth Ann's hubby decided to join in and become a crazy runner too, and did his first half marathon in December.  Jeff, myself and Ruth Ann joined him for this one.  You all may remember the videos of this race, but if not, click here.

                                                                Time: 2:04:35

I am sure in between all this running I may have done some socializing, went to a few concerts (Black Eyed Peas, and Lady Gaga) and hanging out with friends (a river trip and celebrating a friends graduation)  As well as watched Jeff participate in a few races and tri's.

So there it is.  A small recap of my year.  I have had such a great year and feel so lucky to have so many wonderful people in my life.  Thank you to all of you who have supported us, come to races, or just given us words of support.  Who have put up with us leaving dinners or events early to go to bed, or not seeing us for a while because all we do is work and train.  I know some of you think we are crazy, but also know that you get this is who we are and what makes us happy.  I also think it is awesome that a few of our friends have decided to challenge themselves and try out this whole crazy endurance athlete thing.  You guys are awesome and I really don't know how you do this with kids.

Elizabeth and Ruth Ann, I know you both are going to do awesome in just a few weeks.  Being on the little marathon journey of ours has been so fun and it is only just the beginning!

I hope everyone has a happy New Year!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Back in the saddle.

So this past week I only ran TWO times. That is crazy to me, but the stupid cold Jeff's cold I had last week knocked me out, on top of work being NUTS, I had no energy. So the two times was Wednesday at our run club, which I ran 4 miles, at a slower pace than I want to talk about. The second time was on Christmas . I was still a little stuffed up, but overall I feel like I had a really good run. I needed a good run to gain a little confidence back too!

Last year during my marathon training Jeff and I were able to run together a lot This went really well, most of the time....... We did have a few run fights as I call them, but mostly they were great runs.

This year, with his Ironman training our schedules really haven't matched up at all. Since my long run this week fell on Christmas, the group I train with wasn't meeting, and since Jeff had a run scheduled we decided to run together. we I slept in until 9am, and it was GLORIOUS! After I got out of bed, I had some coffee, a bagel, and some Ibuprofen. (I won't go into the details of the
necessity of the pain killer, but let's just say, men don't have to deal with it, and once a month it makes running so much fun!) Anyway, after that we were off. Now, it was a little cold outside. And when I say cold, I really mean cold, like it was in the 30's and cloudy. So we put on our layers and headed out.

I was super excited to wear my running new running tights too. I kinda feel like a ninja when I wear them too.
We did 15 miles, which was more than both of our plans called for, but I am wanting to add miles and Jeff agreed to go longer with me. It took 2:21, which was a pretty good pace for me. According to my Garmin, it was an average pace of 9:22, which I was very happy with. I really hope I can keep that up for the marathon.

As a side note, Jeff likes to sing while we run (one of the things that has caused a run fight in the past.) At one point he was singing Guns-N-Roses and on my I-P0d I had Ke$ha going. I guess whatever motives you, right?

Last week was INSANE at work. I mean, it was crazy. As an example of the craziness, I had a disgruntled customer from another store call my store, and started crying on the phone to me about a pair of jeans. He holiday snapped if you ask me. It is not that serious people. Though I could have snapped Thursday night, as I was at my register ringing up customers from 6p-9p straight with no break. And this is how the conversation goes at the register. We are having a promotion right now, "Buy 2 get 2 FREE" A pretty easy concept to grasp if you ask me. I mean, if I went into a shoe store, and saw that I would know I could buy 4 pairs of shoes, and only pay for two of them. So a customer walks up to the register with two items, we say "hey, everything is B2G2, they say, yeah, I saw that, how does that work? Over and over again. I mean really, it that really that hard to understand. I really felt like telling some people that they didn't qualify to get the sale because they were too stupid to understand what that means.

Anyway, for days my store has looked like a clothes bomb exploded. But the craziness will end in the next week or so, and then I will be complaining about how slow we are. January is always slow, and my associates will probably get sick of me having them fold, size, and re-fold the whole store. January is a great time to shop without crowds, fyi!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Birthday Run and Jeff's stupid cold.


Nothing like celebrating your birthday with a nice 14 miles. While some people might think that statement is crazy, I know most of the people who are actually reading this will relate. Last night Jeff and I went out to celebrate my birthday, and our friend Steve's birthday at Ruth's Chris Steakhouse. It was a great night! After dinner, we came home, and Jeff gave me my birthday presents

Yay! more running gear! So after opening my gifts, we hit the sack, as both of us had workouts scheduled for today. Though, I am pretty sure only one of us followed through..........just saying. Anyway, since I ACTUALLY didn't have to work today, I slept in and went for my run around 10am. Well, when I was headed to get ready for the run, Ernie wanted to go outside. When I opened the door it felt really cold outside, I looked at the temp, and it said 49. Pretty chilly, if you ask me. Perfect, I get to wear my new running shirt! So I headed out on my run. Well, not even a mile in I was already warmed up. Thank goodness there were a lot of shaded parts on the run today, because they felt amazing. I will definitely be wearing a tank during the marathon!!
As I mentioned in my last p0st, I have a running buddy that I usually go run with. This is an awesome perk. However, due to my schedule, and her resting an injury, I went out on my own today. Last year I trained for my marathon on my own, and really loved it. There is no better therapy then being on a run on your own. I do bring my ipod, with the music of my choice. However, I tell Jeff my route and leave my phone at home. It is so freeing and totally clears my mind. I absolutely LOVE it!
Overall the run was pretty good. I had an average pace of 9:26, not too bad. If I can hold that for the marathon I will be thrilled. As some of you know, Jeff has been sick all last week. Well I am pretty sure I got the cold. I woke up stuffy this morning, with a sore throat. I still really had to get my run in, but had a very hard time breathing. Oh well though, sometimes you have to do, what you have to do. Right??? Also, I am wondering if I should take any kind of pain killers before I run. Does anybody do this? Today my right hip really started to hurt. And I had to stop twice to stretch my hammies. ( And twice due to a red light). Though that could have been b/c I had a ten hour shift yesterday!
Oh, and I did add two miles on today, to what my training plan called for. I plan on doing that for all my long runs from now until the race.


Saturday I worked a ten hour shift. It was the last Saturday to shop before Christmas. It took me me 40 minutes, past the time I was suppose to get off, to refold a table of sweaters. It took me 2o minutes to get out of the mall. Enough said.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


Beep, beep, beep, that horrible sound we all hear super early in the morning. All week, when I have heard that dreaded sound I have been so tempted to hit the off button and head back to dreamland. One of the things that stops me, is my running buddy. We run together in the mornings and have to go pretty early so she can be back before her son wakes up. This week I have had to drag myself out of bed, but once we are out there and going I am so glad I did. Having another person to be accountable to is great motivation. And I always feel so good when we are done. Plus, I can't fathom having to run after I get off work, so it is nice to have it done and out of the way.
Another thing that stops me is I don't want to be a quitter. One of the things I love about running is that I get to accomplish something challenging on my own. Throw in the 8 hours spent at the mall, not shopping, afterwards makes it that much more special.
So as I posted in my first post, I had a pretty bad run on Saturday. Since then, things have been looking up. I did a nice easy run Monday. On Tuesday I usually go to one of our local high school tracks and do speed work, but that really only gives me about a mile, so I skipped Tuesday and ran a little over 3 miles. I was much happier with my pace, 9:17, and started to feel confident again. Today Jeff and I ran 4 miles with our LTF run club. I felt strong. Even though it was only 4 miles. Hopefully that feeling will last for this weekend's long run. My training schedule calls for 12 miles, but in my quest to add more miles I am going to be doing 15. I have to do this run on my own though. Luckily I will have the ipod to get me through. Side note....what did people do before all this AMAZING technology came out???? I usually do my long runs on Saturday's with a group, but I have to be at work 8am Saturday, and as mentioned before, will be going out to dinner for my bday that night, so Sunday it will be. Hopefully I don't give into the peer pressure of too much wine!

I wish I could go into the offices, or maybe even homes, of some of the people that shop in my store. I would throw a whole bunch of stuff around, leave clothes laying on their closet floor, and then leave. Better yet, I would go to their office, 5 mins before they are suppose to leave, and then hang around for 30 mins with no concern for making them stay for NO REASON AT ALL! (ie, if you are going to enter a store.......5 mins before close.........with holiday extended hours......please, please, please buy something.)

Monday, December 13, 2010

I miss heels.........

I LOVE shoes! All kinds really, but heels take the cake for me. They are so pretty, and can instantly make a girl feel better about herself. They can make any outfit better, and, mostly, they never go out of style. I will, and have suffered serious pains wearing the perfect pair of heels. HOWEVER, the combo of working in retail, and running has really impacted my ability to wear heels on a daily basis. (I have to believe it is that, and not the fact that I am getting "0lder"). I tried wearing some to work Sunday, and lasted about 45 mins before I had to switch to my flats. I am telling you what, if I ever open my own store, I will make sure that the floors are those kind of floors that gyms have in their group fitness rooms with a little cushion so the employees can wear heels a little bit longer. The floors in my store are concrete, which are NOT heel friendly. Especially this time of year. Why are holiday shoppers so CRAZY????????? One day I would love to wear my Garmin to work to see how many miles I "run" in a day. Anyway, I have kinda, replaced my heel fetish, with running shoes, and always try to buy the ones with the prettiest colors, and that will match most of my running gear! So the Sunday attempt to wear them was the first in a long time. My feet just can't take it anymore. But this Saturday we are going out to dinner for my birthday and I got the prettiest pair of shoes I have bought in a while. For those of you familiar with Jeff's blog, these were my cyber Monday deal.

Aren't they sooooooooooo pretty?????????

I don't care how much they hurt! Or do I? I have 12 miles on Sunday, which I am adding 3 to so I can have a few more long runs before the marathon. I might have to only wear them that night when I am sitting down, we will see. Sometimes you get lucky and actually find a comfortable pair of shoes that aren't running shoes.

Today I had a 40 min recovery run at an easy pace. I felt great and it really loosened me up. Tomorrow is suppose to be speed work at the track, but I usually only get 2 miles out of that. I am going to skip it and do another 40 mins around the neighborhood. Hopefully adding miles to my weekly runs, as well as my long runs this last month and half will help me feel a little more prepared for the 26.2!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Inaugural it goes.

So, I've been wanting to do a blog for a while now, but really didn't know what I would write about. Then a follower of my husbands blog, danglethecarrot, found this and gave me the inspiration I needed. She said........write "About shoes!!!!
About you!!I
About that girl in your back seat."

And today was really the kind of day that made me choose the title "Retail Runner" and was my second inspiration to get started. Today, in my second year of marathon training, I ran 18.92 miles, went home for a quick breakfast, cooked by my wonderful husband, showered, and then headed off for an 8 hour the mall..........two weeks before Christmas. During the run, I ran with a guy who told me that after the run, he and his wife were going to be getting on a plane and going to Vegas. Pretty sure I would rather be doing that, but such is life. I don't necessarily think I am the ONLY person in retail who runs or who is training for a marathon. Actually, I know another store manager who runs. But today SUCKED. Overall, the run went ok. The first 12 miles I felt pretty strong. But after that things kinda fell apart. I hope it is because I knew I had an 8 hour shift, on my feet, ahead of me. Which of course, will not be happening after that marathon!!! Anyway, I pushed though and finished the run, but my pace was not what I was hoping, and was not what I need it to be to meet my goal of a 4:30:00 marathon. I was sore and tight at work, and limped around all day, wishing I was like, what I imagine, everyone else that ran today, sitting down, resting and maybe even getting a massage. But I also know that it took a little something extra to not be doing that.

Oh, and about the girl in the backseat. That is my friend Ruth Ann, who, with two kids, has joined me on this marathon journey. I am sure you will learn more about her soon!