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Country Music Half Marathon 2.2 01-13-11

Friday, January 14, 2011

After having an encouraging start to the training week, I was feeling fairly excited about going running tonight, even though it was just the treadmill! I hit the gym a little while after dinner, and noticed that the new year's crowds are already starting to thin out a good bit. Really? Kind of sad in a way to see people giving up so soon...but unfortunately, that's the way things often go with new year's resolutions. I can only hope that there are some "newbies" who will stick around and make some lasting positive changes in their lives!

Tonight, although my thoughts were still very much preoccupied with house-related stuff (mainly financing and closing costs and making sure we have all the monetary bases covered...) I was able to relax a little and enjoy some TV while I ran. Tonight I tried 5/1 intervals just to change things up a bit, but kept my speed generally relaxed and leisurely. It was tiring and I probably couldn't have easily sustained that interval/pace for much longer, but I wasn't flat-out exhausted at the end either. I finished in 33:27, the best time I've logged so far in this training program. Not that 33:27 is any great shakes, but it's in the high-10 minute mile pace, which is what I'll probably realistically see on race day. So I'll take it!

Next run is a "long" run, if you could call it that, of four miles. I don't think I'll have any problems, and will probably slow my pace just a hair to get through it comfortably. I suspect I'll be on the 'mill because we're supposed to get some snow this weekend (I think) and I'm not interested in busting my rear end open on a slippery sidewalk! No, I don't have Yak Trax and don't have plans to put screws in the bottom of my shoes for this weekend. Although admittedly, the screw shoe thing intrigues me. May just have to have Bruce set me up with a pair from some of my old running shoes one of these days.

Even though this year is going to be pretty lean on racing with just three events, I'm pretty excited about my running-related plans! I can't wait to revisit the past with Country Music, meet some of my online running buddies, and reconnect with other friends. I'm thrilled to be running the Madison Mini, a fabulous race, with Laurie, one of my favorite SparkPeople pals. And then, I'll close up with a dose of Disney at my favorite event, the WDW Food & Wine Festival! And, starting in May, I'll start beefing up my running, slowly and carefully, in anticipation of my first marathon! I have a list of gear that I want to buy this year...first and foremost, a Garmin 305. And I'm budgeting for 1-2 pairs of shoes. And a new black running skirt and a couple of tech shirts. And some compression sleeves...color coordinated to my race day outfits, of course. And who knows what else...funny how I can spend an hour in a race expo and conjure up $500 worth of brand-new "needs" just out of nowhere! (Although I'm generally frugal enough not to actually act on these "needs," but I'll often daydream about them until they either come true or I finally realize that they're just impulsive pipe dreams...) Running stuff...ahhh, it gets me excited! Anyway, with tonight's run, I'm one step, or really 3.41 miles, closer to Country Music. Moving right along!

Tonight's Entertainment: I hit a TV treadmill for some Food Network, which is a rare treat now that we've discontinued our cable service. Tonight I got a dose of Iron Chef (secret ingredient coconut, much better than offal!) followed up by a few minutes of Ace of Cakes.

Total CMHM training mileage: 23.51

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FUNFROG79 1/14/2011 8:35AM

    Great job! Good luck on your long run! emoticon

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    You are a true inspiration to me - no matter what you have a positive attitude -

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Project Pixie Dust: Day 61 01-13-11

Friday, January 14, 2011

All you need is faith, trust, and a little pixie dust!

Almost Friday, thank goodness! Today we handed over our first house-related money, the earnest money indicating that, yes, we really were serious about that offer we made the other day. Well, whatevs. At least it will go towards our down payment, and not into some black hole somewhere. (Not like the thousands of dollars of rent money that we've paid over the last few years...) Our agent is also arranging the inspections. We're having the house inspected, of course, a radon test since apparently radon is hit-or-miss in this area, and well/septic since, yes, we will have a well and septic tank. We also touched base with our car insurance company to see if they could give us a quote on homeowner's, and not only can we get it for a great price, but also will get a homeowner's discount on our car insurance. Cha-ching! It is crazy the questions they ask you though, like they wanted to know where the nearest fire hydrant is and what kinds of trucks the local fire department uses...??? When Bruce told me about that I was all...whaaaaa? Crazy!

And I had a run in with the sucky cable company today. We have the world's worst cable provider, honestly. They are WAY overpriced, as in we were paying $115/month for basic cable (no Tivo or anything cool) and internet, and when we dropped the cable, we still were stuck with $60/month for internet. Can we say SCAM?! I mean, my parents pay around $100 and get all the cool bells and whistles that sucky cable company would probably charge like $300/month for. Anyway, today we decided to cancel the auto-pay on our account and go month-to-month on payments, i.e. pay the old-fashioned way, because Bruce is dead set on the belief that auto-pay is an evil scam. Yeah, whatever, but to appease him, I went ahead and did it. But sucky cable company failed to tell me that an auto-payment was pending and that my cancellation of the auto-payment put my account into a quasi-semi-weird state where $100 was taken out of my bank account but sucky cable company hasn't credited it to my sucky cable account. And, in their usual fashion, the customer service agents were less than helpful. As in, the first one was rude, shoved a couple of non-answers at me, and basically hung up on me. The second agent was more courteous but didn't speak great English and I'm not convinced that she really understood what I was trying to tell her. I guess we'll see if this all comes out in the wash when I do the paperwork she suggested tomorrow. But grrr...would it kill companies to actually invest some money in their customer service?! A lot of places are just so bad lately! I was hopeful that we'd be able to jettison sucky cable company with the move, but alas, it looks like they are top dog in our new town...blah. OK, rant over!

Overall, a decent day today though...

Drink my water, 64+ ounces: DONE (36 days running)!

Eat five servings of fruits and veggies: DONE (14 days running)! Two weeks!

Eat mindfully all day and night: I give myself a B+ today. We are getting towards the bottom of our grocery stash, so are definitely getting a bit more creative with our food selections in the last day or so! Bruce and I ate together at the cafeteria, as we've generally been doing during his layoff. I had a slice of pizza and chocolate pudding cake - pretty naughty, but not as naughty as a full-blown fast food combo! And much tastier! Dinner was leftover couscous and chicken, nice modest portions. I generally feel like it was a good day.

Running: Got it done, blog coming! 3.41 miles conquered!

Cross Training: Not tonight.

On my way to DISNEY WORLD! 54.72 miles complete, 1235.28 to go (1290 total)

Strength Training: Today I had lower body strength training on tap, and did a ten minute SP video. My kettle bell set and Women's Health book both arrived today, finally! I did a twenty minute kettle bell video. It wasn't a full-blown workout as such, it was more just an introduction to different kettle bell moves. I'll probably do the practice/intro video a few more times since a few of the moves are kind of tricky. And the kettle bell came with some "real" workout videos too. I also had a chance to flip through the WH book and wow, is it overwhelming! So many different exercises and ways to put them together! It reminds me of the first time I ate at the Cheesecake Factory and how lost I felt reading their huge menu. I just couldn't figure out what to choose!

It's about time to call it a night, I think. I'm still feeling off-kilter and queasy about this whole house thing, mainly because it's just so emotional and overwhelming, but our agent is really doing an amazing job of guiding us through the process and helping us break things down step by step. I don't know what we would do without her! She rocks! Although there are still some big hoops to jump through and a lot of $$ to put down, I'm letting myself try to relax and enjoy this too. We've been wanting to take this step for a long time, but we just weren't ever quite in the right place to commit to it, and now we are. I can hardly believe it...I know, I know, I'm probably going to babble and carry on about this house a LOT over the next few months. I hope I haven't driven you crazy yet...

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    The process is a pain C...but when you get your home and move it and make it your own, it will all be worth it!

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FUNFROG79 1/14/2011 8:34AM

    I've always wanted to try kettlebells. Good luck with all the house craziness!

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Project Pixie Dust: Day 60 01-12-11

Thursday, January 13, 2011

All you need is faith, trust, and a little pixie dust!

So. Um. Yeah. I guess I won't beat around the bush...

We got the house!!!

Last night, we threw out another counter offer with (honestly) no clue what to expect. We honestly had no idea what the other buyers were going to do and how serious the sellers were about the price/interest rate/closing date on their counter offer. As today wore on, I was a bag of mixed emotion. Most of me, of course really, really wanted to get an acceptance from the sellers. And there was the small part of me that was curled up in the corner in fetal position, all scared about the red tape and responsibility coming our way if we did get the house! As the work day wore on, my phone felt like a ticking time bomb. THE CALL could come in at literally any minute. I was actually in my weekly meeting with my boss when the call came in, but knowing that I was waiting on THE CALL, he encouraged me to answer it right away. So besides me and our agent, the boss (and not the husband) was the first to know. LOL. When the agent congratulated me, I was just like "Uhhhhh..." Still kind of in shock, I guess!

Later in the evening, she sent us an email with the overwhelmingly looooong list of stuff we have to do. First up, we have to provide the seller's agent with $2k of earnest money, which gets applied to our down payment at closing. It takes a couple of grand to prove that we're really serious about this offer, I guess! Then, we have to set up house, well, water, and septic inspections. And start gathering homeowner's insurance quotes. (Boy am I glad we're not trying to find insurance on the Gulf Coast of FL parents have horror stories about that process...) And meet with our loan officer to get our official approval. And lock in an interest rate on or after February 2. Oh yeah, and we close on March 4, the day after Timmy's fourth birthday. So, this is officially the most expensive birthday gift he will receive. EVER.

Today, my eating was a little careless. Not so much emotional. Just careless. Complete and utter lack of planning. As in I woke up without having any lunch packed and scrambled around to find bits and pieces to throw in my lunchbox. Oh well. Sometimes it goes that way. I was a little over my calorie limit today although it wasn't by much.

Drink my water, 64+ ounces: DONE (35 days running)!

Eat five servings of fruits and veggies: DONE (13 days running)! I think I'm developing a slight clementine addiction. I brought two with me, ate them, and then bought two more from the cafeteria. I guess all the Vitamin C can't be hurting me, here in the midst of cold & flu season. And I'm sure in time, it will die down a bit and I'll move on to something else. (For a while, it seemed like I couldn't get enough blueberries or apples spiced with cinnamon...)

Eat mindfully all day and night: I give myself a C today. On the positive side, I got lots of fruits and veggies FOUR freaking clementines. I'm going to turn into a clementine one of these days. Breakfast and dinner were acceptable too, it was just lunch and snacktime where I got a little careless. Since I couldn't rustle up any substantial lunch food at home, I ended up falling back to the cafeteria at work, but I didn't really like anything on the menu, so ate a bag of Chex Mix for lunch. OOPS. Definitely not filling, satisfying, or particularly good for me. And we had a going-away party today for a co-worker who is moving to one of our overseas offices, and I had a slice of cake with buttercream icing. It was very GOOD cake and YUMMY icing, but quite the sugar rush! The good news is that I didn't fall back on emotional eating (since I was nervous about the house bidding thing and all) and I really didn't indulge in too much unnecessary stuff. Honestly, it was the cake and Chex Mix that kinda got me. I actually only went over my limit by 46 calories, which isn't all bad.

Running: None today.

Cross Training: Tonight I hit the gym and did a very brisk 5k walk on the treadmill. It was quite a challenge, but I managed to finish in 43:58! It felt like almost as hard a workout as running, honestly. Gives me a new appreciation for race walkers. I tacked on a 0.31 mile cooldown for a total of 3.41 miles this evening.

On my way to DISNEY WORLD! 51.31 miles complete, 1238.69 to go (1290 total)

Strength Training: Tonight I had core strength training, my LEAST favorite kind, on tap. Sucked it up and did it after the gym, though, a ten minute Pilates video (tough!) followed by ten minutes of relaxing stretches.

Tonight, I'm going to get some rest, and tomorrow Bruce and I are going to start tackling our real estate agent's to-do list. Bruce is on a short layoff from work (stupid slow construction season...) which stinks from a money perspective but is good in that we don't have to fit all of these appointments and phone calls around our work schedules! He's probably going to touch base with our loan officer and call our auto insurance provider to see if they can give us a good deal on homeowner's insurance. Oh yeah, and start rounding up packing materials and friends to help with the big move, now just TWO MONTHS away. So much to do, so little time! This is definitely one of the more stressful points of our life, but ALL of our friends who own homes, without exception, have said that home ownership can be tough but is most definitely worth it.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JANEYINMADTOWN 1/13/2011 10:16PM

    Congrats on your new home! Can't wait to see pix!

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SLENDERELLA61 1/13/2011 5:53PM

    Congratulations on your new home! May you have many, many happy years there. -Marsha

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Country Music Half Marathon 2.1 01-11-11

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Wow, well, my Country Music training is soaring right along! One week down, just a whole bunch more to go. My first week definitely felt rough around the edges as I adapted to running again after being away for several weeks. I focused on getting re-acquainted with the 5k distance on the treadmill, and didn't really focus on speed or "performance" at all. This week, my plans are very similar, except that my Sunday run will start getting longer than my two midweek runs (which will stay at 5k from here until the very end).

Tonight I hit the Cardio Cinema again, even though I wasn't crazy about what was playing, college basketball on ESPN. Florida versus Tennessee. Don't know who ended up winning, although if I had to pick, I'd root for Florida. Sometimes I just go in there because it's dark and cool and not usually overly crowded, not necessarily because of the entertainment. If I don't like what's on, I just listen to music on my headphones. I did listen to something but honestly don't even remember what it was because my overstimulated thought processes were keeping me from really taking in much input!

I stuck to my 4/1 intervals again tonight, and a conservative pace. I think the 4/1 are probably going to work well for me, although I won't really get to test them out fully until I up my distance more and more. It could be that I'll want to downgrade to 3/1 once I get into high mileage. We'll see. Tonight, for the first time, I felt comfortable with the distance and, as I wrapped up, actually felt like I had it in me to go longer. Last week, I was pooped after all three workouts, and probably would not have wanted to run any more. I guess that goes to show that, perhaps, I did lose a bit (or a lot) of my running fitness during my hiatus and that it's just a matter of building it right back up again. In time.

My head was swarming with all the details and emotion of home buying's pretty much ALL that's on my mind this week! Since we just wrote up another counter offer to go back to the sellers, I'm so much on edge. Did we pick the right price? Could we have even reduced it a little bit? What are the other potential buyers doing? At least we'll have an answer within 26 hours, in other words, midnight tomorrow. I s'pose that's not long to wait! So all those unanswered questions and what-ifs kept me pretty well occupied as I cranked out my 3.4 miles this evening.

I'm very happy with how tonight's workout went. It's such a relief to have gotten through a comfortable 5k run after three which tired me completely out. As time goes on, I hope that I have more and more easier workouts like this. I'm actually looking forward to doing this again on Thursday night!

Tonight's Entertainment: Are we going to get the house? Did we offer enough? Did we offer too much? What are our closing costs going to be? How much will insurance cost if we get the house? Did we budget correctly for all of our upcoming bills? When are we going to move? How are we going to move? DID WE GET THE HOUSE? When will we find out? How long will the sellers take to decide? What if we don't get the house? Where will we look next? Did we get the house???

Total CMHM training mileage: 16.69

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FUNFROG79 1/13/2011 4:39PM

    I do 4:1 as well, it's been working great!

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Project Pixie Dust: Day 59 01-11-11

Thursday, January 13, 2011

All you need is faith, trust, and a little pixie dust!

The house-buying plot thickens. Yesterday we put in that offer, and it felt like a shot in the dark since we offered a price near the bottom end of the seller's range, and we knew we were in competition with another couple. Our agent expected, due to market conditions, that the seller would pick the better offer and run with it, whereas in a seller's market, the seller might have tried a "multiple counter" tactic, where both potential buyers get counter offers. So, we were surprised to be presented with a multiple counter offer today! Our agent called Bruce around two o' clock with the news, and he called me right away at work. Bruce and I discussed it and decided to put another counter offer into play. The price suggested by the seller is still a little more than we want to pay, and there are a couple of other terms we don't like (including the maximum interest rate and closing date). Obviously we have no earthly clue what the other potential buyers will do, but we don't want to get too emotionally wrapped up in this house and make a poor decision. Now that we're one step closer to maybe getting the thing, we're also starting to ponder some of the scary stuff, like the official loan application, inspections, closing costs, moving, homeowner's insurance, so much red tape! So we had another visit from our agent tonight, but it was a quick appointment since all we were doing was essentially change two or three lines in the seller's counter offer to what WE want. They will have until midnight tomorrow to decide on our offer. Crazy!

I was feeling scattered and emotional today, and I think my eating kind of reflected that. It wasn't out of hand, but I ate a few more chocolate raisins than I would normally allow myself. OK, a lot more! Miraculously, I was still within my calorie limit, albeit not by much. And I still got my fruits, veggies, and water, as well as plenty of the "good stuff."

Drink my water, 64+ ounces: DONE (34 days running)!

Eat five servings of fruits and veggies: DONE (12 days running)! This is getting easier and easier!

Eat mindfully all day and night: I give myself a C+ today. I got a good balance of fruits and veggies today, as well as some healthy roasted chicken for dinner. But there was a lot of grazing and snacking, which mainly came from the nervousness I was feeling about the house. It also included about four ounces of chocolate raisins - EEK. There are worse things, right? I don't feel like any of today's eating was really in the "binge" category, just a little shaky. Emotional eating is definitely a beast that still lurks in the sidelines, even when I'm doing "well," and I have to remember that dealing with my anxiety in HEALTHY ways is the best way to help my eating. I tried to remember using my good stress outlets, like journaling, talking to friends, exercising, engaging in relaxing activities like reading or crafts, to process my house-buying stress.

Running: Yep, blog entry coming. Had a very nice run (on the treadmill at that!) tonight. 3.4 miles done.

Cross Training: Night off

On my way to DISNEY WORLD! 47.90 miles complete, 1242.10 to go (1290 total)

Strength Training: Two SP strength training videos, adding up to 15 minutes. I focused on the upper body tonight. I think I'm just about ready to upgrade my dumbbells, at least for a few of the exercises. Once upon a time, I thought my five pounders were monstrous. They're still pretty challenging for a lot of things, but not as off-the-wall as I once believed! (UPS/USPS/FedEx...hellooooooooo, where is my kettle bell?!)

Man oh man, is my mind spinning!? Most of my friends who own houses tell me that homeowning is among the most stressful things they've ever done but 10000% worth it. So I HAVE to believe them. We KNOW it's the right decision, scary as it is. As with many big projects, we are just trying to take things one step at a time so it doesn't feel quite so overwhelming. If we get this house, a lot of big things are going to have to happen, and pretty fast, but we'll take them one by one. It's crazy to think that if our offer gets accepted, we'll begin moving in MARCH! MARCH!!! That is TWO months away! OMG!

At least I have my marathon daydreaming to distract me, right?! Now that my friends are all rolling in from WDW marathon weekend, I'm seeing all of their photos and race reports and getting super inspired and excited about 2012. I can't believe I'm going to be running a MARATHON! I've already sat down and sketched out a rough training schedule and tried to budget my spending money for things I will want/need along the way (a Garmin watch, compression sleeves, maybe a couple of new running clothing items, a new pair of shoes somewhere in there, etc.) I would buy the running watch now because Amazon has it for such a good price but I'm holding off for now since we're trying to save every last scrap of money for our house startup costs and it's so cold that I'm not running outdoors yet, anyway. But I am pretty much counting the days until I can say I'm in training for WDW! Mickey bling, here I come! This is going to be so much fun!

Oh, and happy 11111 to you, while we're at it =)

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FUNFROG79 1/13/2011 4:37PM

    House buying is crazy stressful, but totally and completely worth it! Hang in there!

Comment edited on: 1/13/2011 4:37:35 PM

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LAURIE5658 1/13/2011 3:45PM

    This house buying thing is just one big roller coaster ride but so worth it! Fingers are crossed on my end!!

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