Wednesday, August 26, 2015


I feel like I come up with a million things I want to write in my head, but then time slips away. 

Not much to report.

It's still hot here.  Very hot.  Even at 5 a.m., it's often over 80 when I run, and unfortunately this last week or so, it's even been over 80% humidity.  Brutal!

We actually had a gloriously cold morning last week Thursday -- mid-60s to start the run and then after we'd been going about 2 or 3 miles ... rain!  It was unbelievable!  I had considered wearing a hat but decided not to, hoping it would jinx me to have a wet face and it worked.  It was a hill loop day, and I hope I always remember how I felt on my first loop up Shook (for anyone in Dallas), about 2/3 of the way up, at the big break in the trees, when I turned my face straight up into the rain.  I wanted to sing it felt so good!  My friends kept saying things like they hoped it held for the weekend, but I knew better -- it was a gift from the gods to be taken at face value, a one-time gift, not to be repeated, and so I knew better than to even hope for more and just tried to appreciate the one blessedly cool and rainy August morning.

I was definitely right.  By Sunday morning for my long run, it was miserable.  Perhaps even more humid than before, but regardless, it felt about 100 times worse. 

So no surprise that I had one of the worst long runs to date this past weekend.  It was supposed to be 17 miles with 5 at pace.  I did about 9 miles easy, then started my pace work.  A bit too fast on the first 2 miles (8 seconds, then 14 seconds), but both miles were slight downhills, and close enough for government work.  Mile 3 was about 26 seconds too fast, which is well outside my acceptable range.  And at the end of that mile, I was toast.  I slowed down by more than a minute on that next mile but per the data, my heart rate didn't drop at all.  Yikes!  And then the following mile was another 30 seconds slower and my heart rate still didn't come down!  Aye, aye, aye.  A lot of people struggled that morning, so I had plenty of company on my suck bus.  There was some walking involved, but more than that, there were lots of pitifully slow miles (at least by my current standards for myself, likely perfectly acceptable in another decade or so). 

I admit I was not set up for success going into the run.  I was the victim? recipient? beneficiary? honoree? of a surprise party the night before.  My husband is so bad at secrets that it was quite surprising this worked.  Apparently during many of my business trips of late, he's been having dinner with my local bestie to plan it.  It was awesome.  Out-of-towners, party favors, table decorations, and all.  I was shaken and touched at the same time.  It was a fun night, despite the fact that I was probably alone in my level of sobriety -- he was convinced it was fine since there were other runners at the party; he failed to realize they are all training for marathons much later than mine and had significantly fewer miles the next day, starting 30 minutes later than me.  Oh well, I'm not complaining.  It was so much fun! 

So that's it from here.  Ticking along.  Working.  Work traveling (though no work travel this week or next!).  Eating out and celebrating far too much.  Running.  No complaints! 

Friday, August 14, 2015


My dream last night (well, as I'm writing this, the dream was last night; at my current pace, it will take forever to post, especially if I add a couple pics from my phone of City Hall, which I really intend to do):

In my dream, I flew into Philadelphia and we landed early, which was good because my flight was scheduled to land at 10:33 and our settlement conference was starting at 10:30. 

-- This part of the dream is actually based in reality.  I have another commitment on Sunday night this weekend, so I am taking the first flight to Philly on Monday, which leaves at 6 a.m., and lands at 10:33.  That sounds good, but I actually need to be in Philly on Monday for a court setting at 10:30 (my defense counsel should be able to cover it and stall until I get there).  It is no surprise I'm dreaming about this since I'm nervous and uncomfortable about being late for a setting, but it was really my only option given my personal Sunday night obligation that is a very high priority, and the judge has indicated I cannot appear by phone.  I'm crossing my fingers that my flight really will land at least 15 minutes early so I'm not very late. 

Back to the dream.

I got in a cab at the airport.  The driver was male for the driving part of the dream and female for the end part of the dream.  The airport was on the north side of the city (not true in reality) and the driver was taking me into Center City on some C-curve looking side street on the map on my phone that was west of the most direct route.  This was fine because while taking the highway straight south was more direct, I could see on my phone there was lots of traffic on the highway, and the side streets he was taking definitely seemed faster.  I was so happy the driver was getting me there quickly.  The driver was telling me about some neighborhood we were going through and how it was initially mostly Polish immigrants, and I could see some of the signs had Eastern European type names.  (100% dream, nothing I remember seeing in the dream was anything I remember from Philly, and I know of no such neighborhood there.)  While taking this western curving route, the driver was still going toward where I needed to be.  In the dream, I had a message from defense counsel telling me exactly what corner intersection was closest to the court's entrance. 

-- In reality, just last week, I had a settlement conference in Philly that was at City Hall, which is a huge (and beautiful) building in the center of town, but only has one open entrance, with no big sign, kind of tucked in one of the many caverns alongside the building, which means a ton of walking in heels if you don't know which side of the building has that entrance.  That hurt.  So it makes sense that I would ask counsel where would be the best possible place for a cab to start when I know I'm going to be late.  City Hall in Philly, as I saw it last week:

Back to the dream.

Our cab pulled up to the courthouse and then I realized the meter was off.  The driver (female now) had a swipe credit card machine on the front seat that was showing a lot of gibberish (not true in reality, all Philly cabs have a thing on the partition where you swipe your own card).  She asked if I could pay cash, and I said I couldn't because it was work travel, so I am required to use my corporate card, but also because I didn't have any money with me (both usually true in reality).  Well, she got the credit card machine to work and she said the charge was $611 or $621 (I can't remember which).  In reality, it's always $28.50 from the airport (south of the city) into Center City. 

In the dream, I was trying to politely and hurriedly dispute the charge because I really liked the driver, and I'd been planning on giving him/her a $10 or $20 tip anyway for avoiding the traffic and getting me to court so fast.  But I was saying that it had to go on my card, and it couldn't be more than $30 not counting tip, and that $600+ was not right. 

In the dream, the driver ended up coming into the courthouse with me because we still hadn't figured out payment and I had to try to find which courtroom we were in.  The dream courthouse was nothing like any courthouse in Philly or elsewhere that I know, I guess it kind of looked like I foggily think of Grand Central Station looking from movies and maybe 1-2 times I've been there.  Anyway, in the dream, when we were trying to find the courtroom, I was really worried about how I was going to sort out the charge.  And then I woke up to pee. 


What does that mean? 

When a dream starts, does your subconscious already know where it's going to go and how it's going to end? 

Why on earth would I dream about a $600 cab fare?  Especially when it's work travel, and honestly, I've never had a charge get bounced, so if it really was a $600 cab fare, then it really was $600 and I probably could have put it through. 

Am I worried about someone somewhere somehow trying to overcharge me?  But what?  No purchases come to mind, and I'm actually more flush right now than I have been in years probably thanks to a bonus that is presently sitting in my checking account (haven't spent it yet -- likely just doing boring things like IRA, extra mortgage payment, putting some in savings, etc., but right now, it's just there). 

I guess that's my big question -- when I fell asleep and started dreaming about this upcoming trip, did my brain already know it was going to end with the $600 charge?  Or do dreams just unfold as you go? 

I suppose it's quite possible no one knows.  But since I so rarely remember my dreams and this one was so bizarre, I figured I'd share.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

August as Usual

I hate complaining about the summer weather here.  I mean what exactly would one reasonably expect from Dallas in August?  And I do complain bitterly when I'm miserably cold, and I don't feel like anyone should complain about both heat and cold, but yeah, it's pretty much what everyone does this month here. 

So we've had some awesome things like this:

Note that this was at 4:33 a.m. this week.  And I'm smack dab in the middle of Dallas.  So 89 degrees at the start of my run. 


And I definitely wanted to quit yesterday.  I considered turning around at the first water stop, which would have given me about 5 miles round trip.  But we had 9 on the schedule, and I stuck it out.  And then I negative split that bitch!  I was running with my new-ish running friend Bobby and we were egging each other on.  By the last quarter mile, I was seeing 7:30s on my watch, which hasn't happened on in August on a weekday run in longer than I can remember.  It made me feel really good to be done and I tried to really soak in how it felt so I can remember pushing through and kicking butt when it comes to race day. 

Speaking of kicking butt...

The last two weeks have had two races.  The Badass Brazos half-marathon down in Waco this past Sunday, and the San Francisco Marathon that I ran two weeks ago.
Remember how I thought it was kind of crazy to do a half in Texas in August?  Well, the weather did not disappoint:

I was amazed at the parallels between the two races.  They were surprisingly similar, but Waco was half the distance and twice the temperature!  (That's kind of a lie, San Fran was about 55 degrees when I started, and I finished before it hit 106 here this past weekend.  Details, details...)

There were some crazy steep hills in Waco that I was not expecting.

There was some walking involved.

San Fran also had some hills, but given the city's elevation profile, they absolutely could have made it worse.  It was "not bad for San Francisco" but that's enough to nearly kill me! 

They actually put the elevation chart on the inside of the medal ribbon, which I thought was pretty cool. 

The white part is the first half, the navy part is the second half. 

I ended up running my basic plan -- ran the first 11 miles, then walked to mile 18 (though if we were ever going downhill, I tried to jog or run that part, which seemed like it was about 30% of the time in those miles), and then I ran it in.  I had grand plans of running marathon pace or something the last 8 miles, but my legs and spirit were tuckered out.  I ended up finishing in 4:36:07, which was fine with me.  Marathon 22 was in the books, and state number 11 checked off the list. 

I worried the race did some serious damage -- during the marathon and afterward, my right hamstring seemed really tight.  I stayed an extra day in San Fran (went to Sausalito and hung out drinking wine with my brother) and came home late Monday night/early Tuesday morning.  Given the timing, there was pretty much no chance I could run on Tuesday, which was good.  I ran a bit the next few days, but it hurt.  I tried foam rolling, taking it easy, stretching, and it just wasn't getting better.  I was a bit worried I'd really mucked things up. 

Last week Saturday night was a friend's bachelorette party and we had a ton of fun, but ended up staying out until after the bars closed (actually got stuck in horrendous traffic in uptown, crowds of people in the street, impossible for my beastie's husband to drive through (which was fun for him with about 8 drunk women piled in the car, sitting on laps and in the trunk, all trying to tell him how best to drive and get out of the traffic, haha, he's a saint!)).  So Sunday morning, given that my leg still hurt and I was probably still drunk at 5:30 a.m., I skipped my long run, but I did go get it checked out by a chiro.  He recommended a sports massage and said easy running was fine if it didn't hurt, and advised me not to stretch it since that seemed to aggravate it.  Well, I went to Philly for work (oh, that's a good excuse for not blogging lately, I've had a ton of work travel), and ran there, and by the end of the run, I couldn't remember which leg had been hurting.  So 9 days later, all back to normal (well, except the toenail...). 

And now things are just ticking along.  It's Restaurant Week here, so eating out a lot.  Wedding this weekend, then back to Philly! 

Friday, August 7, 2015


Hmm, nothing about this photo makes me think doing a nearby half marathon on Sunday is a good idea.  So why again is this my plan?  I might need some luck. Obviously not racing, but even running doesn't strike me as the best plan.  But it's a really cool medal...