Wednesday, December 30, 2009

...And Happy New Year!

I'm not usually big on resolutions, but I'm going to give them a good try this year. I figure if I actually write it down and post it on the world wide web, I'll be accountable for it (even if no one reads it!).

  1. Write more here. This has become an outlet for me and I have been enjoying working on my writing skills.
  2. Run at least one race every month. I already have 3 races planned for next year, but I'm definately not stopping there. Keeping atleast one on the calender will keep me motivated to run.
  3. Eat better. I keep saying I'm going to do this, but I also keep failing. I'd like to cut out fried foods almost completely from my diet. I'll start with just that one and see how it goes.
  4. Keep track of my miles run and run atleast 20 miles per week. This should be easy. That's less than 3 miles per day (but it'll add up to more than 1000 miles for the year!).
That should be plenty - especially since I usually say something like "lose 10 lbs this year" (which never actually happens). These aren't hard resolutions, but sticking to them for a full year will be difficult. Wish me luck! What are your new year's resolutions?

Monday, December 28, 2009

Merry Christmas!

I know it's a little late to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, but I still mean it all the same. I hope everyone had a great one - I definately did. Our Christmas miracle this year was being able to spend it with all our family - including my brother. I love him dearly and am so happy he's recovering so well. Santa (the hubby) brought me an awesome Lululemon gym bag and a Kindle.

I didn't even think I wanted a Kindle, but it's completely awesome. I've already downloaded several books and I don't think I'll be able to put it down for a while.

Have a great last week of 2009 - I know I'm ready for it to be over! Come on 2010!

Monday, December 21, 2009

I'm Still Alive

Surprisingly, I'm still here. It's been a while since my last post, but a lot of things have happened since then too. I took off almost 3 whole weeks from running - although running might have made me feel better with everything going on, I just couldn't do it. My energy was completely drained and all I did was sleep and worry. Things are much better now and I've been running my way back into shape. There are less than 4 weeks till the Houston Half and I'm sooooo not ready! Every time I attempt longer miles, something in the ball of my foot flares up and I can't walk for a few days. It's killing me cuz my body wants to do it, my foot just won't let me. I'm gonna give it another few days rest and try it again before Christmas. I really want to do well on the next race, but I also can't risk being injured. :(

On a happy note, half marathon #4 is on the calender: Napa to Sonoma Half Marathon on July 18th! I've never been to Napa before, so I'm really excited to run it as my first trip. The race is listed as being one of the most scenic and having one of the best after parties. Wine tastings here I come! The hubby will be spending most of June in South Africa for the World Cup, so I'm doing this trip (and run!) with a friend from Cali. I'm so excited and having trouble deciding where to spend my time - all in Napa or split the time between Napa and San Fransisco (never been there either!).

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Half Marathon #2

After what seemed like training for an eternity, I've finally completed my second half marathon. I actually got quite a bit of sleep the night before (surprisingly since my nerves were a wreck and the bed was so uncomfortable). I woke Saturday morning with a nervous stomach to a cold morning (48 degrees!) and clear skies. I hated the thought of having my first cold run be my half marathon, but there was nothing I could do. I just had to suck it up and praise myself for actually bringing enough clothes. The hubby got me to the race start and hung out with me while I stretched and jumped up and down to keep myself warm. The start was a little hectic since they had to change the begining of the route last second to account for construction that was happening on campus. The gun finally went off at 8:11 and we all raced forward. The first 2 miles were a bunch of u-turns and a lot of confusion. I'm really surprised no one ran into each other (or maybe they did and I just missed it). By mile 3 we were leaving the UT campus and the weather was warming up (or at least I was cuz that's when the jacket came off). We ran past a few construction trucks and their horrible exhaust about mile 4.5 and then at mile 6 ran up the biggest hill I'd ever seen. I'll be honest, I was prepared for this hill. What I wasn't prepared for was the fact that the rest of the race was pretty much a steady incline. I kicked up the pace a little (or everyone else started to slow down) around mile 8. I was feeling great and still full of energy and heard the cheers of my hubby and family 3 times already. By the time I saw my entourage again at mile 10, I was starting to really feel it. My butt cheeks were screaming and my legs were not wanting to move anymore. And we were still going uphill. By the time I hit mile 12, we were back in the UT campus and I was starting to doubt myself. I got rid of the ipod and did my best to make it up the last final hill because I knew the last .4 miles was flat. I wanted to sprint the last mile (that was my plan), but all the hills had me worn out. At the top of that last hill, I caught my breath and gave it everything I had to the finish. All of my family, including my 5 year old neice were there cheering me on. It was the best finish I could ask for, even if after crossing the finish line I couldn't breath anymore. I gasped for breathe and hugged my husband and couldn't quit smiling. I had beat my previous time by almost 8 minutes, even on an uphill course!

Final chip time: 2:06:46

Thursday, October 15, 2009


My poor hubby has been working more than 12 hours a day trying to get his company caught up on all the stuff they've been selling lately. And, he's such a good hubby that when offered tickets to the Muse/U2 concert last night, he immediately offered them to me and a friend since he had to work. Now, I wasn't a huge fan of either bands, but it seemed like everyone I knew was going so I figured it was a show I shouldn't pass it up. Plus, I read an article about the stage that U2 was bringing and I really wanted to see it up close.

The thing is massive. It supposedly takes 4 days to set up and another almost 3 days to take it down. It was definately worth seeing. The black think in the middle is actually a bunch of TV screens and they could move the TV structure up and down and even spread it out so that it spread from the top all the way almost to the stage. The acoustics were designed for an outdoor stadium, so they opened the roof at Reliant and let in the nice muggy night air (it's rainy season in Houston).

There's a crappy picture of Bono on the TV and U2 on stage. They really did put on a great show. I'm now a fan of Muse (I just hadn't heard much of their stuff before the show) and I can respect U2 a little more. I still may not understand why everyone thinks they're so awesome (they do have a few good songs), but I had a great time and am glad that I went.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Away for a while

I'm finally back to the blogging world. I really have no excuse for not being here more often, esp since I sit at a desk at least 8 hours a day and haven't been busy at work for the last two weeks. Things have been extremely busy in my personal life though since my last post. After my 9 mile run, I tackled my last long run before the taper. I had to do it on a Thursday night after work because I was starting vacation on Saturday morning and couldn't meet up with the group. I took off work at 4:30 and headed to Memorial. I ran two loops by myself (6 miles) and I felt great. Old Running Partner met me then (which was good timing since my iPod stopped working then). I stopped for some water and a Razz GU (which sucked - the Carb Boom is so much tastier, without any nasty aftertaste), and then off we went for another lap. I squeezed 4 miles out of her which is the most she's run in quite a while. She high fived me as she left and off I went for two more miles. I felt so great. The weather was cool and the sun was just setting. My legs weren't hurting at all. I finished that 12th mile and figured I still had enough in me to make it one more. So, I finished my last lap - 13 miles in 2:15. That almost exactly matched my first half marathon race time. I was high on life. I finally felt good about my upcoming race and knew I had nothing to worry about.

I even felt great the next day. I did plenty of stretching and walking around working my legs out just in case though. My biggest worry was getting on the airplane the next day for 3 hours and my legs cramping. Surprisingly, I had no problems! The flight to Roatan was nice and smooth and the weather was perfect when we landed. The hubby and I had an awesome one year anniversary trip full of diving, hanging out by the pool, eating and drinking. I logged 22 dives and hit my 50th dive while we were there. Roatan has some of the best diving (at least that I've done), the water was gorgeous, the fish were colorful and numerous, and none of it was very far from our little hut on the beach. We even did our first wreck dives - which was a little spooky after watching all these movies about ghosts from sunken ships. We took naps every day in the hammocks on our porch on the water - it was really a hard week. :)

But now I'm back in the real world, no hammocks to nap in here. I'm back to work and back to stressing about my upcoming race - which is SATURDAY. I can't believe it's finally here. Now I'm totally thinking that I'm not ready and that maybe I've been to lazy lately. Of course, all this rainy weather doesn't help ease things, it only makes me lazier. I managed 6 miles last night around the muddy Rice trail, but now my knee hurts. I hope it's just my mind playing tricks on me. I guess only time will tell, but this definately means that today I'm not working out at all. Either way, whether excited, nervous, or scared, I'm still counting down till Saturday. The weather is supposed to be cool and sunny. I'm even going shopping for new running capris after work! I love shopping.

On a side note, I finally bought a tube of the NUUN tablets to add to my water after runs. I went with the safe familiar flavor of Tri-Berry and it's really tasty. I've added it to my water this morning (since I forgot it last night) and for not having any sugar, it's really good. I'm trying to rehyrdate myself after the 2 beers I had last night. Running has turned me into such a lightweight. I remember when I could have a 6-pack and be fine the next morning, but not any more. 2 beers makes me feel like I had 12 the night before. Ugh! Anyways, I really like the taste of the NUUN and can't wait to try it after or during a run. Maybe I'll drop a tablet in my water after my race this weekend (since I'm definately not going to try it during).

Oh, and what time is it?

10:42am and OU still sucks! Hehe, I can't wait to prop my feet up on the couch and watch the game this weekend. Go Horns!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

9 Miles

I decided it would be a fine idea if I went out for dinner and wine last night, then met some friends up for drinks (water for me) until midnight. I couldn't have been more wrong. I got home tired, but excited about the run, so I slept like crap. It didn't help that DH came stumbling into the bedroom drunk and yelling at the dogs (of course they barked back) at 4am. All I could do was grumble and think that my alarm goes off in an hour. At 5am, I was so tempted to just lie there and go back to sleep, but I forced myself up headache and all. The temperature outside was nice and cool and slightly overcast. I forced down some cereal and gatorade and headed out the door. The majority of the group was planning an 8 mile run to downtown around the Astros stadium, then picking up any additional miles needed by running Heights Blvd. I aimed for doing 10. We set off along Dallas and right after I hit the first mile marker, my left toes started to go numb. I was doing what I knew I shouldn't and running a long run in my brand new shoes (which I've only run in 3 times). I was too lazy this morning to move my foot pod back over to my old shoes - bad idea. I managed to make it to the first water stop and sat down to remove my shoe. It took a good 4 minutes to return feeling to the toes. I watched as everyone drank water, took Gu and went on their way. I didn't think I could make the full route and finally put my shoe back on and headed off in the direction of my car. Then I noticed the girl I ran with last week across the street, and managed to talk myself into finishing (hey, my shoes had to be worn in somehow). So I crossed the street and joined her. I made it all the way down to the stadium and around it (man, I love that place). My feet were really starting to feel better by the time we made it to the bayou (the last 2 miles in to base). I think my shoes were finally starting to wear in and I quit loosing feeling and pulled my pace ahead a little. I felt great, tackled a few hills (my butt was screaming) and made it back to base in under 2 hours. Following the sidewalks along the bayou (instead of the street), I had added a mile to the course. All I needed was an extra mile around the base and I'd hit my 10. My garmin was yelling that my memory was full and refused to count any more miles. I should have just ran for another 10 minutes, but I was tired and it didn't occur to me. I stopped and joined the group stretching. 9 miles was good with me. I felt pretty dang accomplished figuring I had so little sleep (I even almost fell asleep driving home after the run - it's only a 5 mile drive).

By the way, I picked up a Carb-BOOM energy gel a few weeks ago during my Tuesday group runs. I'd been saving it for a long run to try it. Today was the day. I consumed it with water at mile 6. I've had a few different gels before and never been really turned on to any of them, but this one was actually good. I had the raspberry flavor - it was creamy, like a raspberry ice cream flavor (without being cold of course). I managed to gulp it down in 3 shots and even liked the aftertaste. My hunger pains subsided and my energy level increased (I even picked up the pace a little). I will definately be picking up a few of these next time I hit the running store. I'll have to try a few of the other flavors, although I can already tell the raspberry might be my favorite (the chocolate cherry is calling my name!).

Friday, September 18, 2009

Fun Friday

Ah, it's finally Friday! This has actually been a really good week - things are getting back to routine. I managed to run 2x this week, even with all the last minute after-work obligations that came up. I did a nice 3-mile tempo run on Tuesday, followed by another 3-miler on Wednesday where my legs proceeded to tell me "Screw you - we ran yesterday! We don't feel like working today, let's go back to being lazy." So, I had to stop and tell them who was in charge a couple of times. Needless to say, Thursday I decided to give them a break and not make them run. I went to DrillMax class instead. Big mistake. This class was uber-hard even when I was in tip-top shape! I mentioned to the instructor why I'd been missing the past two weeks, silently thinking that maybe she'd take it easy on me. Riiiiiggghhhtt. I think she just enjoyed watching me grunt. I loved how she kept telling me "30 more seconds" in her cute little French accent. Yeah, 30 more seconds is a long time if you've just collapsed trying to do yet another jumping pushup (you know, where you have to clap your hands between each one?) during your one minute interval. I was really kicking myself for having poptarts for breakfast (but they were S'Mores and so yummy!) instead of something healthy like yogurt and granola to prepare me for my butt kicking. But don't worry, I made up for it after class with a bowl of spicy ramen and a cherry Coke. Another bad idea. I followed that up with a spin class since I didn't think my legs worked as hard as my arms and abs did at lunch. I had a healthy dinner...consisting of probably 3 helpings of fried okra. Ooops.

But now it's Friday, and my lazy day so that I can prepare for my long run with Kenyan Way in the morning. I'm not looking forward to the 5am wake-up call, but I am ready to kick it up a notch. I think we're running to downtown and back which I've never done, so I'm kind of excited about it. (And don't worry, the eating habits are getting back on track - I haven't had anything horrible today...yet.)

Monday, September 14, 2009

8 Miles!

Well, almost. So I was good Friday night. I went out with friends for Korean BBQ and only had 2 beers. I wanted more, but I knew I had to be good if I was going to try to put in a decent run the next morning. Hubby and I went home completely stuffed and after 2 glasses of water, I went to bed around 11. It was later than I wanted, but I figured I'd survive. I tossed and turned all night - I kept dreaming about waking up late, the storms outside, and everything else that had me all worked up. I hardly slept. The alarm went off at 5am and my mind tried to find ways to talk myself into staying in bed. What is wrong with me? I haven't run in two weeks and all I want to do is sleep in! I managed to slide out from under the covers, get dressed and have a bowl of cereal while watching the weather on TV - storms. It wasn't currently raining and the news promised that it would hold off till 8. I put my shoes on, crossed my fingers and walked out the door.

I got to Jackson Hill in plenty of time to find parking and sign up. There were runners everywhere! It was like I had morphed into a different world. The mileage posted for today's run was 7.5, but there were other routes on the board in case you wanted to do more or less. The runner's I had seen while parking had gotten up earlier than me and were running extra miles before the official club run started. I figured I'd start with the group and turn around if I felt I couldn't do all of it since it was just an out and back route. I stuck myself in the 10:30-10:45 min/mile pace group so that I wouldn't push myself too hard in the beginning. I felt great, the weather was cool, yet muggy, but no rain. I made it to mile 5.5 before the cramps came and I stopped to walk. My sides were screaming. A very nice runner came up behind me and asked if I was ok - it gave me the motivation I needed to start running again. I kept her pace and we talked the last couple of miles back to the start. The group had a yoga instructor there that was conducting 15 min stretching sessions, so I joined in.

All in all, I finished 7.75 miles in 1 hour 24 minutes. Not bad for my first day back. I really enjoyed running with Kenyan Way and will definately be joining them again this Saturday.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Lazy Again

Ok, so I've already started slacking off about this blog thing. I've been trying to keep myself fairly busy so that I won't notice that I'm not working out. I guess it's worked, cuz now it's 14 days post-surgery and I'm ready to hit the roads. I know how hard it's going to be to start up again, so I've made a date for tomorrow morning at 5:45am (gasp!) with Kenyan Way. I met a guy at my Tuesday running club meetings that ran with them last week and he really enjoyed it. So, I emailed the group, told them I was interested so they'll be expecting me. I can't let them down, alas I must get up early. I really want to do well in this half marathon and I only have 5 weeks left of training. The countdown is officially on.

On another note, I've been testing my eyesight lately. I managed to sit at the back of the room at my dive meeting last night and see every tiny little fish displayed on the projector without squinting or any bluriness. I'm loving being able to see when I get out of bed in the morning and not dealing with the hassle of glasses or contacts. I've already thrown out my last pair of contacts, but I still have my glasses. They are sitting on my dining room table just staring at the mops on those Swiffer commercials. I almost hear the music playing and them begging me to wear them. Ha! I showed them!

What should I do with my glasses? I mean, I've had them for over 10 years, don't they deserve some kind of party or memorial or smashing???

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


I actually woke up this morning and felt great. I removed my goggles (gah, 4 more nights of them!) and thought: I should go for a quick run before work. Here I was thinking it was such a great idea and just as I was about to kick off the covers, I realized what was in my left hand: goggles. I just had eye surgery. strenuous activity for one week! Isn't the saying "one week makes one weak"? I'm really hoping that this week off doesn't hurt my running too much. October 17th is just around the corner and I'm really hoping to beat my previous half marathon time of 2:15. I'm ready to get my butt in gear - if only the doc's would let me.

Monday, August 31, 2009


It's done! My Lasik surgery was a success. The doc says I'm now seeing at 20/15. I'm so happy! This was probably the scariest thing I've ever done in my life. I was very nervous about the surgery, but the possibility of the outcome made it worth it for me to go through with it. My eyes are sore and tired (and they will be for a few more days) but I can see! I never, ever want to live through the 7 minutes and 30 seconds that the surgery took again (and hopefully I won't have to). I'm such a baby, because as soon as it was over, I cried. A lady waiting for her surgery told me that it was the Valium that got me all worked up. Whatever it was, I don't care anymore. So what, I cried and I freaked out. It's over now and my eyes are healing wonderfully. I can't wait till I can start running next week, not have to wear those annoying goggles at night, and for next month when I go scuba diving in Roatan. But until then, I'll be wearing my sunglasses everytime I step outside and taking plenty of naps. The doc said sleep is my friend and that's good, cuz I love sleep!

6 Hours to go

Tonight was fun. I pretty much figured I wouldn't get to do anything this weekend, so I lived it up tonight. I met my old running partner for a nice jog around Rice, then dinner at Hungry's (which is quickly becoming a tradition for us). After that I met Married2Food at Anvil to start tackling my 100 drink list (mmmm Gin!). She convinced me that I needed to spend my last night in my glasses attempting to eat our way through a 10 course dessert tasting. Who's going to say no to that?

So, five of us girls headed to the chef's restaurant after closing to hang out in the kitchen and try his amazing desserts. I have never worked in a restaurant nor ever been in the kitchen of a restaurant, but this was definately cool. We stood around the counter where our amazing host prepared our treats. First up (sorry, I bit into it first before I remembered to take the picture) - the corn dog.

A cornmeal pastry, ketchup-hot dog sauce (yes, there were literally hot dogs used in making it) and mustard ice cream. It tasted like I was at the fair! I tasted all the parts separately and then again all together. I'm still amazed sometimes at what chef's can do with food. This was my all time favorite of the night.

Next up, funnel cake, maple syrup and spam ice cream. Yes, Spam! It tasted just like a creamy, cold version of the canned meat. Mixed with the sweetness of the maple syrup and crispyness of the funnel cake, we were all in heaven. No funnel cake piece went uneaten!

Our gracious host then made us his take on a peach cobbler. Peaches warmed in a sugar sauce with vanilla shortbread topped with crushed nuts and buttermilk ice cream. The man really knew his way with ice cream. I could have eaten straight from the container. I love cobblers, and this was no exception.
The crowd favorite: bacon jelly filled donuts dipped in chocolate sauce served with spicy nuts and chocolate ice cream. I'm not an over-the-top bacon lover, so maybe that's why this wasn't my favorite, but it was really tasty and very sweet. I still can't believe he managed to make a bacon jelly! I think everyone in attendance devoured at least 2 full ones. I was starting to feel really full and only had part of one.

Last up, a homemade chocolate cordial cherry. I loved these as a kid. I used to hoarde them in my room after Valentine's day and not share with anyone else in the house. But I think the rest of the desserts had played their part on me and I was throwing in the towel. I only had one bite of this. The rich, thich chocolate coating put me over the edge and I was done - we all were for that matter. We only made it 5 courses into our tasting - 6 if you count all the mini pastries we consumed while cleaning everything up. It was definately a great end to the night. I went home full, still slightly tipsy, and slept until it was time for my surgery. (Well, mostly slept - in between all the bad dreams about Lasik.)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

22 Hours...and counting

It's been a busy week over here. And not busy with running. :-/ Last week, Tuesday was the only day that I ran - and only 3 miles since I had to meet the girls for dinner. I started back at yoga last week and there was a guy filling in for our regular instructor. We did so many hip movements and stretches that I pulled something in the front of my left leg. Even walking was painful for 2 days! I stretched and I massaged, but to no avail. The damn leg just kept hurting.

This weekend, running was last on my list. (Although it shouldn't have been.) My man and I went camping at Brazos Bend State Park and diving with the group down at Mammoth Park. I haven't been to a state park since I was a kid and I honestly forgot how beautiful and peaceful they are. Brazos Bend would have been a perfect place for a run - I actually saw runners and cyclists out there. I didn't even take my shoes! I wanted to kick myself. So here I am in a new week and again, I've only run on Tuesday. I did do five miles, but I really need to get myself back out there. I'm not sure where my motivation has gone or how to get it back. I set my alarm to get up this morning, but turned it off and went back to sleep. I think I ran in my dreams - does that count?

I'm down to less than 24 hours before I can't run for a while. Tomorrow morning I'm going in for Lasik surgery on my eyes. I'm excited and nervous all at the same time. Finally I'll be able to run without glasses or dried out contacts! Finally I'll be able to dive and see underwater (since the water burns my contacts and I can't wear them)! Finally I'll no longer fight with my eyes when they burn and scream if I try to wear contacts! I'm so looking forward to perfect vision! (Even though Married2Food says I look so cute in my glasses! Have you ever done yoga in glasses? Yeah, annoying and in the way.)

But when my recovery is over, I'll be ready. I should be stir-crazy by then, but just in case, I've lined up some movitation: new running shoes and a new sports bra. Not much beats having new shoes!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

HRW - Voice

Last night, a few girls and I enjoyed a lovely dinner at Voice for Houston Restaurant Week. I tried out Benjy's and Rainbow Lodge last week for their HRW menus, but I have to say this was my favorite of all - and I already want to go back. We started the meal with a few appetizers of the regular menu.
Sashimi of Yellowfin Tuna, Asian pear, yuzu and spicy kanzuri. This was excellent. The tuna could not have been any fresher and the jalapenos added a nice kick.

Housemade Charcuterie: salumi, pate, cherry mustard and tuscan bread. I've never had pate before, but this was amazing. Supposedly pate is very gamey, but this was not at all. There were a few other meats on the plate, all of which I tried, but nothing compared to the pate.

Mushroom Soup “Cappucino”: Crimini mushroom, truffle foam, porcini powder. This is what I want to go back for. It looks just like a cappucino, but it's mushroom soup! I've never had a soup so good. It was like eating liquid mushrooms. I wanted to pick up the cup and just sip from it. It was even served as hot as you would get a coffee. I had trouble waiting for it to cool before slurping it up.

Pan roasted pork loin, roasted corn, israeli couscous, granny smith apple, bourgon-garlic sauce. This was the entree that I ordered. It was served not hot, but not cold which was disappointing. I chose this on the recommendation of the waiter, but after trying the steak from the other girls, I now regret my choice. It was good, it just wasn't GREAT like the other dishes we had.

Crab Cake with spicy Voodoo sauce. Like my picture? I'm trying to be all artistic with the shot. It might not look like it, but this little cake has huge chunks of delisious crab inside. The sauce was a spicy version of a sweet and sour sauce and was really good with the crabcake.

Warm chocolate cake, chocolate sauce, caramel sea salt ice cream. I was the only one at the table to order the chocolate cake. Everyone else ordered the Strawberry rhubarb crisp, almond oat streusel, ginger Chantilly cream. I was really torn on which one to order, but the caramel ice cream was just too inviting to say no to. And it did not disappoint. The chocolate cake oozed with chocolate sauce and the ice cream was a perfect combination with it. The sea salt kept the ice cream from being overly sweet so that the dish wasn't too overpowering. The crisp was also amazing, but everyone agreed it was a tough choice between the two.

The kitchen sent us out sorbets to finish our meal. They were an excellent surprise and we graciously thanked them for everything. Each of us were served a different flavor, so we decided to play musical chairs with them. The one I started with was Champagne Green Apple. It was much like a granita ice cream, very ice-y, but like and flavorful. The rest of the sorbets were creamier and very fruity. The other flavors were: Raspberry, Coconut, Cherry Almond and Smoked Strawberry. We all had different opinions on which ones were the best, but we didn't have any problem finishing them all!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Meet Marcie!

Say Hello to Marcie the Mares! :) This is the new scuba toy I picked up last night.She's beautiful, isn't she? She's going to help me breathe underwater. Not like that rental I had in Cozumel last month where I had to suck with all my might to get air out of the damn thing. Marcie will treat me much better than that. She's designed to be one of the easiest to breathe from and not only is she one of the best regulators on the market - she's also the smallest. Her mouthpiece is designed to fit in tiny mouths like mine comfortably without me feeling like I need to bite down with everything I have just to hold her in. With the bigger regs and mouthpieces, I'm very succeptable to the mouthpiece falling out (or someone kicking it out of my mouth!), so I usually swim around holding the damn thing - not anymore! Here's the rest of her setup:

That yellow cord and mouthpiece is my 2nd stage reg. If anything ever happens to Marcie and I can't breathe from her anymore or if my dive buddy runs out of air and needs to steal from me, the yellow one is there to help. Hopefully, we'll never need to use the yellow one, but one can never be too safe! The other black cord allows for airflow into my BCD (those vests we wear to hold onto our tanks). When we reach the surface and are waiting on the dive boat or need to swim, we can inflate our BCD so we don't sink back down again. The only thing I'm still missing is my console. The dive shop didn't have it in stock yesterday, but they are getting it ordered and it should be here by Friday in time for our dive trip down to Mammouth Lake in Lake Jackson. I'm so excited to try it all out and stoked to finally have a full set of dive gear! Oh, and after last night, I'm Nixtrox certified (and so is Marcie) so we'll be trying out new air with longer down times as well!

Beavers - Take One

Sunday a few of us headed to Beaver's for brunch. Nothing starts brunch better than a bloody mary, so of course I obliged and had my first drink before noon. (Don't judge me - I got up at 6am and ran 9 miles, what did you do?) JJ started our meal with an order of his Spam Nuggets - they were chunks of spam breaded and fried then coated in a chipotle honey sauce - so amazing! He had been working on his drop biscuit recipe for the throwdown the next night, so of course one of us ordered the special of the day to try it out. Check out the pictures!

That monstrosity is JJ's masterpiece. From bottom to top: half a biscuit, cheese omelet, gravy, bacon, homemade sausage, other half of the biscuit with a maple coating. He even sprinkled a few yellow flowers on top to finish it off.

I have to say that all of the food was amazing, but we definately tried to eat way too much of it. Our waiter kept the drinks coming to help wash down everything. And just when we thought we'd had all we could take, JJ brought us dessert.

This dessert was a perfect end to brunch: Another one of his drop biscuits stuffed with stewed peaches, candied bacon, maple and a fried egg then garnished with bacon ice cream and maple fluff! I think I could have just had this for breakfast and been completely satisfied. I'd heard of bacon ice cream before, but been a lil afraid of it - for evidently no reason at all. It was yummy! It tasted of vanilla with a hit of sweetness and of course BACON.

Beaver's is fastly becoming one of my favorite restaurants in Houston - and not just because I've made friends with the chef and the bartender, but because they really have some awesome food, drinks and patrons. We managed to turn brunch into a four hour event and make our way through at least half of the drink menu. I love Sundays (esp when meals like this get to be followed by an afternoon nap)!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Lazy Hazy Crazy

Last Saturday a few friends and I decided to run a 5K in the Houston August heat. It was actually a very nice out and back run (besides the heat and lack of breeze). I made a new PR of 28:42 that makes me very proud to know that my speed training is working. The fastest girl in my age group was 4 minutes ahead of me. I'm not sure I can beat that, but I sure as hell can try (give me a couple years tho - you get faster with age!). It was definately a great way to spend a Saturday morning - and even better that B and I won Astros tickets during the raffle!

Here's a pic of us after the race. B had just managed to explode a carton of OJ all over him and we were still laughing from the surprise of it (although I think he was trying to hide his smile)!

9 Miler

I want to reiterate. It sucks not having a training partner. SUCKS. The only time I run with anyone else is on Tuesdays during the Brian O'Neils runs, and those have to be my favorite. Otherwise it's always just me. I miss the days when my running partner was still around and not busy with school and I kinda miss HoustonFit. I ran 9 miles this morning by myself. Yes I had everyone else with me running the Memorial Loop, but when it came down to it - it was up to me to push myself to the finish. I did really good until the start of the 3rd loop when my iPod went dead and the sun really started to hit the sky and my muscles really started to yell. So I walked. I hate walking tho. Something about it makes me feel weak, like I'm giving up - which I know isn't true. I managed to finish the last lap with a nice slow jog, but I know I could have done better. I have one more long run before I have to take a week off from working out, so maybe when I can run again I'll see if there are any openings in any of the clubs around town. InFlight and Runners High seem to be more of what I'm looking now that I'm a more experienced runner. Wish me luck taking on 10 alone next week!

Now I'm off to Beaver's to try out JJ's pork belly for the throwdown tomorrow. I'll try to remember my camera to make you drool!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Excuses, Excuses

I managed to run 5 miles on Tuesday which is my longest "short" run that I've done in a long time. I always aim for 5, but usually never have the time or energy to quite get that far. According to the training schedule that I'm on (which I created by myself using Bart Yasso's recommended plan), I'm supposed to run 5 days a week. I've been slacking. Hopefully writing about it here will kick my butt into gear and I'll quit making excuses not to run. My latest excuses? Yesterday I told myself I could take the night off if I ran in the morning. This morning I convinced myself it was too dark outside to run thru the Heights - even though the sun was coming up! I actually went to the gym at lunch today with every intention of running, but alas, I had no sports bra. So now I'm SOL. It's my husband's birthday and his mother is in town tonight, so I'm sure I won't be able to get away to run today. I guess I'll just have to try again in the morning and keep my fingers crossed that another excuse won't convince me not to.

Day One

So I finally figured that I read enough of everyone else's blogs, that I might as well start my own. I mean, I love to talk, and I'm not a horrible writer - so why not give it a shot? I'll try to keep it as interesting as possible, so that you'll keep coming around and leaving comments (I hope!). So, welcome to my online world and please enjoy your stay!