Sunday, April 29, 2012

Kind of a quickie

What a great weekend!

Yesterday I took a friend who was feeling down to the Zoo for my inaugural membership trip.  The weather was great and I took my big digital SLR.  Ended up taking 311 pictures and managed to catch some really great moments.

Otter content.

I shouldn't have had that last beer...

I heard you weren't feeling well.

Much better now.

Gotta go... gotta go... gotta go right now!

This year's Christmas card.

This one is for RR.

Mickey fans; they pop up when you least expect it.

And then what happened?

I have a barrel!

Fine, now *you* have a barrel.

Still so embarrassed that she chicked my barrel.

Now I have a stick!

Bear assed.

Shhh, listen.  This year we are *totally* kicking some Dawg butt!

Because Cougars rule.  Uh huh.  That's right.

Y'all, this Crossfit is *hard*.

And these are just the absolutely best shots -- or the ones that had the best punchlines -- so that gives you an idea of how many pictures I really took.  I love that camera.  But it's heavy and I get tired of carrying it around after a while.  If I can figure out how to tote it around in D.C. without it driving me crazy, I'll take it with me. 

Today Julie and I drove around in circles before finally finding the start of the Bald Peak Half Marathon course.  After her Monument Peak run I suggested we go check out the course which has some serious elevation gain.  And holy cow, does it ever.  About 500 feet in elevation just in the first mile.  Which was when we decided we couldn't face the second mile today so we ran some slightly flatter miles in the area.  Very slightly.  Total elevation gain:  834 feet. 

It was beautiful out there though.  I even got to channel my inner Kim:

He obligingly came over to say hello -- twice!

How was your weekend?  I'm looking forward to reading the Eugene race recaps. 

the CilleyGirl

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Lilacs ho!

As you know, in about ten days I will be running the Spokane Bloomsday race.  This is a Lilac Festival event but, oddly and sadly, it's not actually held in conjunction with any of the other Lilac Festival events -- like the parade.  That stuff actually takes place two weeks after the race.  So, here I was thinking that there wouldn't be that much to do in Spokane while I'm there.

Except then I looked at the race expo.  Holy cow!  Look at all them vendors.  What is that, like 90 of them?   Is this bigger than the Portland Marathon expo?  I think it may be...

I am looking forward to stopping at the following booths:

Franz Bakery.  Because every race expo should have baked goods.  Four spaces!

Marmot March.  I don't even know what this is.  Let's google it, shall we?  Oh, it's the kids' race for Bloomsday.  Interesting graphic though.

Runnnnn, Marmot!  Run!

Yay, Nuun will be there!  I'll likely be needing some more Nuun by next weekend.  Nuun just announced their Hood to Coast team runners.  I hope they have better course organization and support this year. 

Nordstrom Rack.  Really?   Maybe they'll have coupons.

Ditto for Linens Wholesale and then some oils and vinegars place.  Because when you think running, you think oils and vinegars.

Runners Soul has a whole block of space.  Apparently they are the only specialty running store in Spokane.  That seems sad.  If they're purely local, I'll see if there's anything I can afford to buy from them. 

New Hope Bible ChurchKidding!  They'd probably smite me. 

Bakke Brothers!!!!  Really excited for this.  I got some of their elk and buffalo jerky when I was last in Tillamook at the cheese factory and it is soooo good.  They're based out of Salem, though I have yet to find a store around here that carries their products. 

Loud Truck Gummis.  I had to google these guys but I'm interested in checking them out.  Looks like a nice alternative to shot bloks and the like. 

RR, are you jealous about the size of my expo?  

What do you like to see in an expo?

the CilleyGirl

Monday, April 23, 2012

No more frump!

Hello everyone!  Did you get hot weather too?  We went from about 40 to about 80 this weekend.  Crazy!  I slept in a good part of Saturday, had a major sleep deficit going on apparently, but I did get out and about. 

Last week I decided I needed to make over my wardrobe -- been feeling much too frumpy plus everybody at work dresses up except me -- so I went to the thrift store to see what I could find.  And I scored big.   Seven pairs of slacks -- including one Calvin Klein and one Anne Klein -- three skirts, and three pairs of shoes (alligator loafers in a deep, deep red; ivory slingback flats; and a nearly new pair of Teva sandals, they're somewhat mandatory in certain circles in Oregon, they're usually $60 and I got them for $7.99).  All that for around $110. 

I also went to Sears and got a sage green crocheted shrug, a navy cardigan, two tank tops to wear under them, some and nylons and some tights, and two pairs of capri pants (one loden green, one black) that I can wear to work or for play.  That trip was about $60 in the end, because they forgot to take the ink tag off the cardigan.  Apparently Sears' policy is that if they forget to take it off, you get the item for free to compensate for the inconvenience.  Shame that the cardigan was on sale for $26, marked down from $70; that would've been a total score!

Today I wore the sage green shrug over a beige tank top and one of the skirts I got for $3.50.  The nylons I already had (in a lovely shade of corpse) and the shoes too, a black snakeskin pointy toe with silver accents.   I still have that ferret around my middle so not entirely the silhouette I wanted but I'm working on it.

Sunday I mowed the forest in my yard -- only plugged up the mower once -- and did some general clean up back there.  I also ended up getting a new, slightly larger BBQ as my last one succumbed to the elements.  Only made one error and got one flesh wound putting it together.  It was great to be able to grill again. 

How was your weekend? 

the CilleyGirl

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Run run run run run run run!

I did my slow two again last night -- yay for me!  Double yay for me as my regular schedule will have me run Tuesday and Thursday rather than two days in a row, but I remembered my dentist appointment this afternoon -- novocaine and drilling involved -- and knew I wouldn't want to run tonight.   I took more walking breaks than I did on Tuesday, it was really warm in the gym on the second level, but for the last tenth of a mile or so I bumped it up to about a ten minute mile and that felt really good.   I've been doing these shorter runs on the dreadmill and while it's a really nice treadmill with my own TV screen and stuff, I watch the clock the whole time and can't wait for the run to be over.  When I just run, I don't clock watch. 

Which means for my Saturday "long" run I'm thinking about doing an Earth Day race.  My 5K PR was an Earth Day run back in hmmm, 2010?  The weather is supposed to be beautiful on Saturday.  At the same time though, I'm thinking maybe I save my money and sleep in a tad and then just go run three miles at the same park where the race will be.  Yep, that's what I'm going to do.  And then I'll think I'll go to the Zoo.  Sunday is supposed to be dry but not quite as nice; sounds like a good time to get that yard work done.

Then maybe this cheapie race on April 28.  It's even chip timed.  Pretty good for $15.00.  I like the logo too, wonder if it comes with a shirt?

The weekend after that is dun dun dun!  Bloomsday and a seven mile course.  Which means that should probably be the only thing I run that week.  Maybe a two miler at the beginning of the week if I'm feeling good.  I'm looking forward to this quick trip to Spokane because that means it's vacation time and up to the ranch to see my mom and my best friend and her kidlets.   And then when vacation is over, it's time for Portland Rock 'n Roll and the Fly Girl is coming to visit again!  Sleepover!

Anyone doing Fueled by Fine Wine this July?

And then........ Is this race going to go on my calendar for 2013?  It just might.  I've definitely got the camping gear for it and the temps up there should be pretty nice in August.  Who's with me?? 

the CilleyGirl

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Building base miles, the non-stress fracture-y way!

Between being sick and having a couple of worrisome ouchie spots, my base mileage has been shot all to hell.  This week I am starting to re-build my base.  The question is, how to do it some other way than I've been doing it -- because clearly, my way hasn't been working.

So I went to Runner's World to see what they had to say.  Here's what I stole got from them*:

Know your base pace.  Base miles should be run at a comfortable, conversational pace, or about 60 to 75 percent of your maximum heart rate.  For faster runners, base pace is probably at least 1.5 minutes slower per mile than 10-K race pace, while slower runners might be closer to a minute slower per mile than 10-K race pace.

I run at the same pace for every run, whether race or training:  As fast as I feel like I can go without dying.  Note that this is different from as fast as I could go.  Because I should be faster than I am.  But I let my brain -- and my lungs, and my legs -- pysch me out.  I am working on this.  Overall,  I aim for 12 minute miles.  I'd like to get this down closer to 10 minute miles for up to five mile distances.  For longer, particularly half marathon or marathon distance, a consistent 12 would be just fine with me.  For MCM, I have to get under 14 minute miles.

Plan your increases.  Here is Jack Daniels's rule for increasing mileage: Never add more than one mile per week for each running workout you do per week. So if you run four times a week, you can add up to four miles to your weekly training. But once you add miles, you must train at the new weekly total for three weeks before adding more mileage. Devote 10 to 12 weeks to building your base to reap maximum benefits.
This is the part that has been breaking my legs.  I had a tibial stress fracture in my right leg last year trying to do too many miles too quickly, and this year when I started to have that same feeling in my left leg I stopped running.  I think my left leg will be okay, but I also have a persistent, nagging ache in my right foot that's been around since the first of the year.  Interestingly, my foot doesn't really bug me when I'm running but I'm being careful with it nonetheless. 

Don't forget quality training entirely. When you're base training, the majority of your workouts should be made up of steady aerobic mileage. But to ensure that your body will be ready for the rigors of speedwork once spring has sprung, throw in a 20- to 25-minute tempo run once a week. Also run six to eight 100-meter strides at the end of two other runs each week.

Tempo runs have zero application to me right now.  In fact, I'll confess:  What exactly is a tempo run?   Every time I think I figure it out, the knowledge leaks right back out again.  I also don't have any interest in speed work right now.  I'm a distance runner.  I am not a sprinter and I never will be. 

So, after all of that, how to start building a base?  Again, this is always the challenge to me.  Do you start with ten or fifteen miles a week right off the bat, like in most plans?  Most plans also have the caveat that you have base mileage.  But -- not to sound like a broken record -- how in the heck do you start?

I'm going to start really slow.  Really, really slow.  I have some interim races planned, but my A goal is MCM.  This week, I have two two-milers planned with a long run of three miles this weekend.  A total of seven miles, with walking breaks when needed.  For my first run yesterday, I did two 15 minute miles; I could've easily gone faster but I forced myself to be mindful of healing injuries.  

I think I will follow the above Daniels' rule and do this for two more weeks, ideally with less breaks and a bit faster pace as I go.   It's also a good way to get back into the habit of running several times per week.  Three days a week is doable; going straight to four days a week and sticking with that is tough even when you're healthy.  In week four, I should be ready to add a fourth day to the schedule. 

Yes, this will mean that I may be DFL or damn close to it at the Portland Rock 'n Roll Half and the Bald Peak Half.  I know it's going to mean that for the weeks of those races I likely will only be doing the race and that's it for mileage.   But that's okay with me.  I'll do what it takes to ensure I have a solid, healthy base when MCM training officially starts in July.

Yeah, not what I meant when I searched for "hot marine."

Much more like it!!

How did you build your base?

the CilleyGirl

*Taken from this article here.  No copyright theft intended or implied.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Fishy kisses are the best!

Did you guess where I was?  Did you?

Michelle was right -- I was in Newport in Oregon's Central Coast for the weekend. 

Yaquina Bay Bridge.  I borrowed the earlier pictures but these ones are all mine.

Thursday afternoon the sun came out briefly and I got this urge to get out of town.  A look at the weekend forecast and a few phone calls later and Friday after work found me throwing a few things into the car and heading out to Newport.  Since I'd already done the beachfront hotel thing back in February, and didn't really have the money to do that this time, I found a dirt cheap hotel off of Highway 101, about six blocks from Nye Beach.  It was bare bones in terms of amenities but it was clean, relatively quiet, and had everything I needed.  Even the bed was comfy. 

I hadn't been to that part of the coast for at least ten years, if not closer to 15.  I'd actually forgotten about the aquarium there, which is fairly surprising considering I'm such a nut for zoos and for marine mammals.  Really, an aquarium is the perfect thing for me.  Especially when it turns out that they offer sea lion kisses!

This is Lea, one of the aquarium's three sea lions.  Isn't she cute?

The Oregon Coast Aquarium offers a short Sea Lion Kisses program where it's basically just the kiss, and a longer Sea Lion Encounter where you get an aquarium tour, including behind the scenes stuff, plus meet the mammalogist and, of course, the sea lion who will be smootching you that day.  The kisses are part of that sea lion's daily enrichment/training.  The other two get theirs in the morning's public feeding. 

I'm such a pretty sea lion...

The behaviors they learn are not only for play but for handling and health reasons.  For example, the trainers brush the sea lions' teeth every day so they learn to open their mouths and hold them open.  It's so cute.  If you've ever seen a Sea World show with the sea lions, seals, or walruses, they can do a lot of that stuff too like say yes and no, talk, blow kisses -- Lea was learning that behavior.  And, they also give kisses.


They had me go first since no one else volunteered and I was the total geek pressed right up against the rope line to get as close as I possibly could to the sea lion.   Please ignore the fact that I have no chin.

You can tell this is a seal because they don't have ear flaps.

Sea lion Quill.  See the ears?

Sea lion Max.

In addition to seals and sea lions, there are my other favorite, otters. 

Did you know that there is an otter network?   It's true.  All the otters talk to each other, passing on information about their favorite people.  I know this for two reasons.  First, because this otter kept coming over to just me, doing turns and flips and every time he came around he'd raise his head right out of the water towards me at the glass directly and make serious eye contact.  The people next to me were giving me the weirdest looks. 

Second is of course because a few minutes after I arrived to make his acquaintance he showed me that he too is a hygienic otter.

In other words, this year's Christmas card!

The aquarium also has a huge acrylic tube that passes through several tanks where there are, among others, big ass sharks. 

We're gonna need a bigger boat.

Find a happy place.  Find a happy place!

Dude, I ATE Nemo.

I also visited Yaquina Bay Lighthouse and Yaquina Head Lighthouse.  In case you're wondering, it's pronounced Yuh-QUIN-uh. 

I love this next pic.  Dead seals!

Yeah, not really.  But if you didn't know...

And no trip to the beach would be complete without a new sampling of chowders.  Three hits, no misses. 

All in all, a good trip.  Batteries are recharged for another month or two.

the CilleyGirl

Loving life...

You know the drill!

the CilleyGirl

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Collectin' kisses...

Can you guess where?

the CilleyGirl

Friday, April 13, 2012

Goin' fishin'....

Can you guess where?

the CilleyGirl

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Thirteen Things Thursday

1.  It's been a while since I've done this.  What should we talk about?

2.  How about, foods you always order when you're eating out.  Me, it's eggs benedict and seafood bisque.  Not together, although hmm.... that sounds kind of good now that I think about it.  Oh, and food that is on fire.  I love food on fire.  Feels so primal.  And stuffed mushrooms.  I think that's it. 

3.  I'm still feeling pretty blah today.  I have a plan for that, though.

4.  But it's a secret.  Hints will be coming.

5.  Several people I know are huge Disney fans but for me, it's Sea World.  My favorite exhibits at zoos are always the ones with sea lions and otters, and the first time I went to Sea World in San Diego I felt like I could've stayed there forever. 

6.  Number 5 relates to my secret...

7.  Good running vibes to my bestie Jules who is running the Pear Blossom ten miler this weekend down in Medford.  I had hoped to be able to swing it and at least go spectate with her boys -- I'm definitely not up for ten miles all in a row right now -- but my boss would've had kittens if I tried to leave early tomorrow.  I'm sad to miss spending time with them though, and although I've been to Medford I've never been to Ashland.  Oh well, maybe I can talk Julie into some Shakespeare this summer....

8.  CATnip registration is open!  They put on a very good race, have a good tech tee (royal blue this year), and it's for a great cause.  Speaking of which, the CAT shelter recently suffered significant water damage from a burst pipe and they could use some donations.  Or, for you to adopt a cat or two (or more!).  I'm totally enamored of this kitty and her sister.  Stupid allergies.

9.  I'm getting kisses this weekend!  That also relates to Number 5.

10.  But it's still a secret.

11.  Also good running vibes to my other bestie the Little Fruit Fly who is running the Boston 5K this weekend.  And to her boytoy the Coach, who is running the Boston Marathon.   It'll take him probably about an hour and a half to run the damn thing. 

12.  By the way, the idea of Kate Winslet's boobies in 3D frightens me. 

13.  Because of my secret, I have to go home now and do laundry.  And eat baked scallops and marinated mushrooms.  Yum!

the CilleyGirl

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The good, the bad, the urp.


I didn't throw up last night like I did the night before.


I threw up the night before.


Some hunger pains today at lunch time.


Not as much of a hungry feeling as I should have had since it was lunch time and I hadn't eaten all day.


I felt like drinking, and did drink, a lot of fluids yesterday for the first time in a while.


Not so much today.


I haven't had any belly pain or discomfort for almost a week.


Until today.


I had salad and soup with green veggies things in it (chard, I think) for lunch, also some high fiber mushrooms.


Also some breadsticks with alfredo sauce.  Also the mushrooms were stuffed with clams and cheese.  (Guess where I went for lunch?)


Way too much food for my poor shrunken tum. 

Those mushrooms sure were tasty though.

How is your day going?  Happy hump day!

the CilleyGirl

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Hoppy Easter!

Thanks for the comments, everyone :)  I am continuing to feel better although still no real appetite and in a good news/bad news kind of situation I've lost around five pounds in this past week which puts me almost finally back below 200 for the first time in months. 

Makes me wonder if I haven't been literally full of it for a while.

The weather has been beautiful this weekend and if it hadn't been Easter weekend I definitely would've gone to the zoo.  Of course I am much too sick to do yard work or anything like that.  Which reminds me, I do need to do some laundry.

I made my Easter dinner yesterday so that I could enjoy it all weekend.  A teeny flame crafted ham.  Pineapple baked beans.  Mashed yukon gold potatoes with pork gravy.  Cucumber salad.  I had a little of the first three and surprisingly chowed down on the entire cucumber salad.  An apple for dessert.  Some of the ham is destined to become my breakfast omelette today.  And I just felt a faint glimmer of interest from my tummy at that thought so I'm off.

Enjoy your Easter!

the CilleyGirl

Friday, April 6, 2012

As a diet, I don't recommend it.

I've lost at least four pounds in the past few days.  However, I don't recommend whatever is going on with me as a diet.  Here's why:


Not hungry. 
Ergo, lose weight without all the usual BS.


Not hungry.  Also not thirsty. 
Ergo, lose weight without all the usual BS.
Add in wicked headaches that sneak up on you because you haven't eaten.
Top with potential for dehydration and eventually hospitalization.


By the way, I'm not normally one to suck up the praise but are my comments broken or something?  I thought I'd have at least one "how lousy for you" comment after yesterday's post.  I was sick and everything when I wrote it.  No sympathy?  Sheesh.  I don't get hernias and DV for myself, people.  It's all about YOU.

Seriously though, if comments aren't working would someone who knows I'm not imaginary let me know off the blog?

Today to eat I have had two inch square crackers with one inch square piece of yummy smelly cheese.  And a banana, to combat the low blood sugar headache.  And two diet cokes and 32 ounces of water.  I've had two brief instances of my tummy saying "I'm hungry."  At which point I say "Come again?" and my tummy says "Huh?  I didn't say anything."  Weird.  I'm going to pick up sushi after work, something that tastes good so that I'll want to eat it.  I know I probably shouldn't be having anything where sesame seeds might be lurking but nothing else sounds good.  Except maybe some nice, salty chicken broth. 

Maybe I'll have that for dessert.

the CilleyGirl

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Answer: You're interesting, you're weird, and you can't be figured out in fifteen minutes.

Question:  What are three things you'd rather not hear from a doctor at urgent care.

So.  It's been a weird week here in CilleyLand.

Saturday I was hanging out at home, holding down the couch, when I lifted myself up slightly to grab something off my lap and felt a slight tugging sensation to the left of my belly button followed by the feeling that you get when you've been needing to pee for a really long time, so long that it's now painful to move.  Which was weird because I had just come back from the bathroom. 

That pressure eased off but on Sunday it was a little bit more of a pulling/pressure sensation -- again, about two inches wide and to the left of my navel.  Monday I worked way too freaking long because we had a deadline and I was going to take the day off on Tuesday.  Tuesday was more holding down the couch and still that weird pressure/pulling in my stomach.  Wednesday morning I woke up for work and the pull was really strong so I called in sick to work with the idea that maybe I'd go in to urgent care if I still had this odd thing going on.  I slept in for a bit and got up to find that the problem had mostly gone away.  Except now I looked like I had a tummy tuck but one that instead of sucking stuff out they put stuff in.  Like gel.  A flat tummy but one that is four or five inches deep.  Like I'm wearing an umpire's vest.

Now understand that my mom had a bladder prolapse several years ago (your bladder pops through a wall of muscle inside you) and my grandmother had an abdominal aortic aneyrusm (the big blood vessel in your stomach that is directly connected to your heart pooched out, pretty serious stuff).   So the swelling in my stomach was freaking me out. 

No wait at urgent care, which was nice, but as I expected they had to do a round of Q and A and then relay that to the doctor to see if they were going to immediately haul me off to the ER.  I didn't have pain per se and it wasn't on the right so I figured it wasn't my appendix, and everybody seemed to agree so they checked me in. 

And then the fun started.  The nurse and I -- a cute guy named Nick, Nurse Nick -- did another bout of questions and then I did it again with the doctor.  Poor doc learned pretty quick that yes, I am medically interesting and I am medically weird.  By this I mean these problems are usually caused by A, B, or C -- but I'm an R or maybe a T kind of a gal.  I train for and run marathons but when doing so my triglycerides double in a year's time.  They think I've got a problem caused by a poor diet -- but my diet is about 85% pretty good, even by the doctor's Conventional Wisdom (meat no more than once a day, the size of a pack of cards, no red meat, yadda yadda yadda) standards.  They think I don't exercise; nope, sorry, training for at least two half marathons and a marathon this year.  That's when I got the "well, I can't figure you out in fifteen minutes" line.  Which, I understand.  Insurance only lets you spend so much time and then they move you along.  So at the end, basically I got prescribed salad.

Oh, and that's because the top two choices for what's going on with my belly is an umbilical hernia or diverticulitis.  Or possibly both, because while divertic -- hell, I'm going to call it DV -- is the more likely candidate she could feel a ridge in my ab muscles that indicated I'd had a hernia.  

Dr. Google and I think DV is more likely overall because it would also explain the weird thing going on with my appetite/how fast I get full over the past five or six months.  I think I mentioned it here a couple of times, but since about October my appetite has changed.  I can't eat as much as I used to easily be able to.  Which is good, kind of.  At first, at least.  I seemed to be normally hungry, just fuller faster.  But the past couple of months my appetite has been declining.  Again, kind of good.  Except for the past few days I have had zero appetite.  Not even for beverages.  And that's not any kind of good.  I have to consciously eat and drink right now.  Loss of appetite is one of the DV symptoms.  I have all the others too.  In particular, the random bouts of nausea I've been having since about last October. 

The good news is, unless I hear otherwise from the lab tomorrow any DV pooches are not infected then the attack should pass -- and I feel a lot better today -- in a few more days.  I need to eat more roughage and hopefully my appetite will start to come back.  I'm okay with being a lot less prone to overeating in the future, but I would like to enjoy food again.  Lately I've been seeking out salt and spice in my food, it's the only thing that sounds good.  I wonder if maybe I didn't have a minor hernia, which is what happened on Saturday, but that all along I've had the DV and this just got someone to ask the right questions.  I think I mentioned that my appetite had changed to my regular doctor in January but it wasn't like this back then so maybe not.  I had figured it was just a factor of getting older.  To which the urgent care doc laughed and said I was still just a baby. 

Good to know.

So, how was your week?

the CilleyGirl

Sunday, April 1, 2012


...and after.

In case you're wondering, it's not up there crooked; I am.  Unless my level is fubar.

The hanger is from Allied Medal Display.  The hanger is the 22" with one bar style.  I figure I've got room for at least four more medals on this one easily.  It went up easily in about ten minutes. 

I will probably re-arrange into chron order.  They're kind of that way as it is.  From left to right, my first medal from Race for the Roses 5K in 2009, Lacamas Lake 4-miler in 2009, my first Shamrock 15K in 2009, the January Resolution Run 2012 5K, this year's gigantic Shamrock 15K -- all the Shamrock medals are also bottle openers by the way, Portland Marathon 2011, Eugene Marathon 2010, the evil Runaway Pumpkin Half 2011, and Shamrock 15K 2011.  This year I should be adding Bloomsday, the Portland Rock 'n Roll Half, the Bald Peak Half, and Marine Corps Marathon.  I'm still talking with Julie about doing Fueled By Fine Wine later this year. 

What do you think?

the CilleyGirl