Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Monday, March 30, 2009
Saturday, March 28, 2009
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
He also got some of his favorite gifts (the new U2 cd, Yoku Moku cookies, a Bubba Gumps gift card, etc.) In this picture, you can see that Ryan got daddy an exercise outfit from Kona's finest clothier (Costco)!
Ryan was a little disappointed that his wish of cheap strippers on a pole never materialized, but there's always next year!
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
- I finked on a group of screaming, swearing, drunk punks at 2am to the park rangers! This made me quite the local celebrity 'round the communal sinks the next morning among the other campers!
- As much as I whine about living in such a hot, sticky locale...apparently, I don't handle bone-chilling* cold very well either. The first night in bed, I looked like a bundled Eskimo (Roy wore a short-sleeved top and boxer briefs). I did my best to steal the sleeping bags on top of us all night long and still shivered horribly most of the night. *For me, this untolerable temperature is about 50 degrees. Brrr!!!
- Age has not yet rendered me mature enough to deal with icky toilets or showers very well. I still did my best to 'hold' as much as possible (though that effort did not extend to reducing my intake) the entire weekend until we were near clean toilets I could dash into.
- Packing and unpacking for camping will always take about four times longer than the actual camping trip itself.
- Even though I'm from Hawaii, I'm gonna go ahead and say that the volcano is definitely one of the top 3 or 5 parks in the US (and I've been to a lot of parks in 48 states). Check out these photos!
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
I finished 94th out of 122 runners...I know. I know. I have some work to do. I take some small comfort in the fact that had I run the 5k- I would have finished 77th out of 176 runners. So it does appear that the 10k runners tend to be a more serious running bunch here...which means if I don't want to be at the back of the pack next year- someone needs to suck it up and do some speedwork and hills.
Today's run was a 4-miler with the first two miles downhill (easy to feel cocky and confident), and the second two miles back uphill (I sucked...I had to stop and walk 3-4 times and ran something like 12-minute miles). It was pretty disappointing, but I have to remember that I've only done that run 1-2 times, so it's going to take more than a few months to be able to conquer it.
Nonetheless, today's run has brought me to the following dilemna-
1. Should I suck up my fear/dislike of hills and speedwork (my weaknesses) and integrate some drills into my limited training? It could improve my performance in races, but it could also make me start to dread my runs. Yet, I don't want to automatically say I shouldn't do it, because I may find that once I push past my initial fears/discomfort, I may actually enjoy becoming a faster and stronger runner.
2. Or....should I not focus on my race performance/times and instead focus on what I love about running- which are the long(er), flatter distances that allow me to feel effortless and free as I propel myself forward as far as my legs will carry me?
Please don't tell me a hybrid of the two approaches would be best, because if you do, you obviously don't know that manic people don't do well with 'middle of the road' moderate approaches to anything. If that were the case, I would also have learned to 'eat sensibly' by now (why do they put all those Cheetos in a bag if they didn't want you to eat them all at once?), or accept that 'it's okay' to not have an immaculate home 24/7.
Anyway, at this point, because I'm only a month into the runs and lack time, I think I'm more inclined to go with the latter approach. I don't want to mess with something that once brought me such tremendous joy by getting all anal retentive about it (not that THAT'S ever happenned). ;-)
Saturday, March 14, 2009
First things first- Roy and I both finished the 10k today! I ran the 6.2 in just under 61 minutes, which was a pleasant surprise. That still put me at the very back of the pack...still, I can't complain about sub 10 min. miles!
Things I forgot about running...
-The intimidation of standing at the starting line amongst all the 'beautiful people'- young, ripped mostly-white folk who look like they could outrun you while carrying you AND a 20-lb. bag of rice over their shoulders.
-Being one of the only dorks with a Fuel Belt (especially for such a short distance). I just prefer carrying it so I can hydrate whenever I want to... and it holds my shot bloks (very important).
-The exhaustion you feel powering through that last half mile, and then the exhilaration of finally being able to hear the announcer at the finish line because it tells you you're almost there!!!
-The kindness of race volunteers. -Queueing in line for the potty and then feeling like you need to use it again exactly three minutes after you've finished.
-Being at the back of the back really does NOT help the self esteem. Oh sure, you can try telling yourself stuff like- "Well at least I'm out here! It doesn't matter if I'm last!" But then you cannot help but notice that the people in front of you have things like wooden peg legs, or are 9 months pregnant with sextuplets, or are 104-years old with osteo-arthritis in BOTH knees. And then you realize that you really didn't need all those pita chips, li hing mui gummy bears and Tigers Milk bars last week. :-(
Overall, I know I should feel great about what I did today. I mean, I finally got back out there, and I finished at a much better time than I expected. But for whatever reason, I don't. If anything, I felt overwhelmed by the speed of everyone else out there (I was never comfortable, nor did I ever hit my 'zone') and it just made me miss the distance of the half. I never felt bad running slowly during a half because I would comfort myself by saying I was slow because of the distance. But in a 10k I suppose it's just not as cool to be so slow...because I swear, there was almost NO ONE behind me. It's been awhile since I finished in the back of the pack, so it was quite ah...humbling to be there once again.
I won't say it was bad enough to motivate me to actually run more than 2 days a week or do speedwork though. Oh God no. Such crazy talk! I'm still perfectly content plodding along at 10:00 min. miles! It was just kinda embarrassing, that's all. I suppose the one silver lining is that I'm more motivated to build up to the half now!
Other quick updates-
-I've officially been on a diet (i.e.- nothing is restricted, I just attempt to reduce my intake...I am rarely successful) for one month now. And I think that somehow, I have managed to lose 3-4 lbs! Yay. My goal is to lose a total of 10 lbs. or so. That will bring me closer to a healthy weight for my size and allow me to fit my old pants (if Ryan didn't permamently expand my hips).
-One day after a particularly bad day of overeating, I was mad enough to walk 4 miles in my MBTs with Ryan on my back. That was TWO solid hours of carrying 25 lbs. on my back. I am lion, hear me roar!!!
-Roy returns to working nights after a three-week hiatus. This means I'll be lucky to get in 2 days of running per week. Nonetheless, I'm still planning on training for the half-marathon in June (I'll just do one short and one long run each week). I know the time won't be pretty since I used to run 3 days a week AND work out in the gym 2-3 days a week, but I'll just be stoked to be able to run 13.1 miles again.
-I still can't talk about that vague 'thing' I referred to last week (the outcome has been pushed back for another few days/week). But it's still potentially in the works and could be awesome for me.
-I can, however, talk about another cool thing that's happenned- we booked our annual vacation! And while it's a long way from the vacations of past, we think it's the best thing for our current situation. We'll be going on a cruise of Alaska's Inside Passage this August! We'll spend 4-5 days in Seattle as well, a city I've been to over a dozen times. I miss the fruit at Pikes Market (Rainer cherries!) and can't wait to walk the city!
-Roy is a phenomenal natural athlete. He kicked serious butt in today's race and without ANY training- ran 3/4 of it. Un-friggen-believable. If he didn't have to worry about his knees, he'd be leaving me in the dust. We ran together for most of the race, which was kinda nice because we've never been able to do that before.
-Next year I'm definitely doing this event again...but with Ryan! Because this is lil 'ol Kona, Hawaii (I should have known), strollers were allowed on the course! Hopefully by this time next year he'll agree to sit in the stroller long enough to let me finish the race (and I'm sure he will, 'cause I'll tell him there's beer at the finish line)!
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Sunday, March 08, 2009
Today's 4.25 miler started out a little shaky (I was tired, Ryan had a rough night). As I struggled along for the first two miles, I remember pitying all the poor motorists passing me by. Because if you ever thought that the world's ugliest facial expressions were made by sweaty singers like Mick Jagger running around and emoting up on stage- think again. They're actually out of shape runners like me staggering up a hill. To the best of my knowledge (and for the purpose of journalistic integrity I did attempt to recreate this expression in the mirror once I got home), I look like I'm in my 17th hour of trying to give birth to a large watermelon while being poked in the face with a stick.
Thankfully the bloks kicked in around mile 2. It was also dark, cool and drizzly the entire time (which I love), and I finished feeling as though I could have pounded out (notice I did not say 'easily pounded out') another mile or two...which is exactly how I should feel since next weekend I'll get to do exactly that in the 10k. I believe I ran solid 11-minute miles, which is borderline atrocious, but I've only gone on 11 runs since last month, so hey...whattayagonnado? So if my predictions are correct, I'll finish next week's run in just under 70 minutes. I know. I knoooow...please God, do not let them publish the results in the paper...
So at this point, I'm feeling like 2-3x/week runs are doable (provided Roy doesn't kill himself on the OT and can watch Ry). And they're quite necessary if I hope to continue to whittle down my waist a bit more. I'm getting a wee bit closer to the pre-pregnancy weight, but man! I can definitely tell that I have a lot less lean muscle and a lot more fat than I did at this same weight pre-baby. I still can't fit a single pair of my old pants/jeans and it's abundantly clear whenever I put a sports bra on and all my backfat and underarm fat spill out over the fabric that I definitely need to lose 5-10 lbs. My goal is to fit be able to fit into ONE pair of my old pants by the time our camping trip rolls around later this month (or I'm gonna have to spend THREE full days in the same black stretchy sweatpants because I'm way too cheap and stubborn to enable myself by buying another pair). And this is particularly ambitious given that I have recently discovered a new form of crack cocaine- baked pita chips. Damn those chips!!! I purposely don't buy them, but three people (three!!!) in the last few months have given me some...so honestly? What's a cheap girl with no absolutely no self control around food to do?!
Friday, March 06, 2009
I know I've posted a lot of photos of Ryan lately, but I couldn't resist adding these. He's just so happy right now (no teething)! On a side note- when I look at these photos, it looks like Ryan has an entire wall FULL of toys! And I suppose he does...which was never my intent. But I swear, in 9 months, we've only bought him a mirror, a bag of Megablocks and a plastic pool. Everything else is a gift or a hand me down (which we're always so grateful for). In an effort to better stimulate his imagination and creative energy, I had initially hoped to expose him to the kind of toys that were mostly organic and didn't require batteries (trying to avoid the constant noise and lights most toys come equipped with nowadays). But wouldn't you know it- his favorite toys are always the ones that make tons of noise (and are probably made with lead, asbestos and cyanide in the paint). On the plus side, this kid definitely looks to be a music fan- he often bops around to music, loves to play with the toy ukulele at preschool (you just try and take it away!) and loves hitting my parent's wind chimes! Roy just may get his wish and raise a little Jake Shimabukuro!
Wednesday, March 04, 2009
Sigh. We've done a great job cutting some costs (we've slashed our rent by moving in with good 'ol mom and pop, and we've slashed our entertainment and transportation budgets since we never go out or drive long distance anymore). But other costs seem to have skyrocketed- our medical has more than tripled (both our employers covered us in CA, but here we pay over $650 a month for our premiums alone), and our food and household costs have also gone up by about 30% since the cost of living is a bit higher here.
But I want to be clear- I'm not complaining...we feel extremely fortunate to have a solid income and the ability to have one of us stay at home with Rizzle. But we're also feeling like we're not making any progress toward our goal of banking up cash to buy a home. Instead of that happenning a year or two away as we'd planned, it looks A LOT more like it will be 3-5 years away. Which ah...kinda sucks. We're currently negotiating whether or not we should even go abroad this year. Last year was the first time we didn't do it since we figured Ryan was still too young and we'd already taken off a lot of time from work. So we were really looking forward to going to either Vietnam, Cambodia or the Philippines this winter, but now we're looking at the numbers thinking maybe we shouldn't. :-(
On the plus side-
I'm now trying to run 2-3 days a week and walking two miles a day in my MBTs the other days. The race is next weekend, so my final 'long run' (if you can call it that) will be a 4-miler this weekend, which just so happens to be the exact distance from my house to town (so I'll have Roy meet me there to pick me up). I've always disliked running around a track on up and down the same old path, so it's extremely liberating and motivating for me to have the option of running on the road. Running again is tough, but I'm starting to feel for the first time since Ryan was born that something is 'uniquely mine' again. It's awesome. (Oh, and Deanna- I get the shot bloks online from Amazon. They have a great price and usually have free shipping).
I'm also trying to focus on the fact that living at home is the best thing for Ryan (and I) right now. He and I get to see his cousins and grandparents on a near daily basis- which is wonderful for him, and I also benefit from the company as well.
Race day is in a week and a half! My time will be atrocious, but I don't care! It's something different to do and I'm very excited to run in a race again!
We're going camping in a few weeks! I'm making the menu/grocery shopping list as we speak! (It's kinda hard becauseI have to take into account my carnivorous father, my 'we only eat noodles' nephews, my 'I only eat mushy food and finger foods' son and my diabetic mother!)
The Ukulele Festival is this weekend and Roy is going to take a class by Roy Sakuma! I know he's excited, so I'm excited for him. And after that, we have a birthday party to go to. Again- something different!!! It's amazing what a stay-at-home mother looks forward to!
Roy & my mother both got me li hing mui gummy bears for Girls Day yesterday! My favorite! I also scored some popcorn, poi and chi chi dango from Roy! All my favorites, and tellingly enough- they're all food! And you wonder why I fell off the wagon!
I got my weekly issue of Us Weekly today! This has gotten no less exciting with each passing year.
And finally, everyday that Ryan is healthy and happy is a day that I am genuinely appreciative for. I take nothing...nothing for granted. I hope.