SMITTY4RL's SparkPeople Blog SMITTY4RL's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Laugh! The power of laughter is profound. Shoulders lift, the head tilts upward, deep healthy breathing occurs, and one (or more) of your worries has dissipated. ;-) <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.spark... Sun, 1 Jun 2014 17:22:13 EST Sweet dreams are made of cheese... Too punny: <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Thu, 29 May 2014 15:25:28 EST 5 Reasons to Run a (Half) Marathon I haven't run a lot since my last 'organized' training for my half-marathon in April. Walked bunches, but actively run, just a few times here and there. So I had to sit down and think about why I signed up for the Air Force Half in September. Here are my reasons (you can probably substitute any race or exercise in there if you want): <BR> <BR> 1. Helps build endurance (becoming fit), not only for running, but for daily living. <BR> <img src=" Wed, 28 May 2014 13:16:11 EST Memorial Day <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Celebrated annually in May, Memorial Day is an occasion for remembering those who died while serving their country in the United States armed forces. It’s not to be confused with Veteran’s Day, an annual holiday in November that honors everyone who served in the U.S. military. <BR> <BR> Memorial Day was first observed in 1868, when it was called Decoration Day, a day set aside to honor the 600,000 U.S. men and wom... Sun, 25 May 2014 21:23:55 EST Complexities of Losing Weight Happy Saturday all! I found this very short video of Dawn Brooks, she is a participant on a PBS documentary called "All of Me". I have not seen the show, nor do I know if it's already aired. I hope not because I'd really like to watch it. <BR> <BR> I'm not in the obese category, but I am overweight. To quote a friend of mine: "They're only donuts, not love." But losing weight is hard, yo. I don't think I need to remind anyone of that here. <BR> <BR> Ms. Brooks' honest thoughts are really ... Sat, 24 May 2014 15:26:44 EST Wanna Play Frisbee? No, seriously. Anyone? My arm is getting tired. The pup has found a new obsession besides her beloved tennis balls. The Pro-Classic Frisbee. And it has to be the Pro-Classic because we had a different kind, but no dice. And she's partial to red and blue. A Frisbee snob. ;-) <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=" Fri, 23 May 2014 10:04:33 EST Ripening an Avocado - Oven Method Love avocados, but I did not grow up with them--hard to find in Central Ohio. So they were an adult find, around 1985, when I lived in Arizona. I've been eating them ever since and I'm glad to say that Ohio has finally gotten on the bandwagon. LOL Even better news, they are relatively cheap at this time of year-woo-hoo! Hooray for good fats! <BR> <BR> But how to ripen them when you don't have 2 or 3 days for the old brown bag method? <BR> <BR> Yesterday I had one that was obviously not ripe... Thu, 22 May 2014 16:05:56 EST If Dogs Could Text <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> If my pup had opposable thumbs she would totally text ;-). Here's the link to the website for more funny stuff: <link> </link> Wed, 21 May 2014 22:09:50 EST Finally Friday Don't tell Saturday--my favorite day of the week--but Friday looks pretty good. This week had it all: drama, comedy, suspense and even a little bit of thriller mixed into the bunch. Not this thriller: <BR> <img src=""> thank heavens, because I couldn't deal with zombies. <BR> <BR> All my fitness minutes this week have been 'functional', either mowing, raking, weeding, shoveling, hauling, etc. I don't mind that, except I didn't run at al... Fri, 16 May 2014 15:44:08 EST Here Comes the Sun "It feels like years since it's been here, here comes the sun..." Spring has finally come to Ohio. Can I get an amen? <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Here are some spring-ish pics from around the hacienda. Flowers and plants are finally--finally!--blooming: <BR> Strawberries- <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Apple tree- <BR> <img src=" Sat, 10 May 2014 22:23:28 EST To Race or not to Race Runner’s World has a terrific article in it this month that deals with an issue I’ve been having for some time. The title of it is called “Don’t Even Start” and it deals with how to stay motivated when you never pin on a bib. <BR> <BR> At some point I made the turn from basic runner to one who signs up for races. A logical segue from training, a carrot at the end of the stick so to speak. After all, only a true ‘runner’ or ‘athlete’--a person who is proficient in sports and other forms of p... Mon, 5 May 2014 19:29:57 EST In the end you'll feel better <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Got up at o-dark-thirty to drop hubs off for another round of hiking in the great woods today, then drove home for another 6 hours. I had some coffee and tea along the way: <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> When I got home, I had that buzzed out feeling that really doesn't set you up to go workout. I mainly wanted to sit on the couch and contemplate my heart rate... Sun, 4 May 2014 16:15:18 EST Running shorts rec Summer is the bane of my running existence. I gripe endlessly (it seems) about winter running, but in truth I like being covered up. Not so much for summer. So I've been trying to find a running short that will work: have a longer than 4.5 inch inseam, has pockets and provides good coverage. The last thing I want to do is run self-consciously with shorts sort of bunched up in odd places, you know? I think I found some--Moving Comfort Endurance Short, 7.5 inch inseam, zipped pocket in the bac... Wed, 30 Apr 2014 14:46:56 EST High Rate of Return <img src=""> <BR> <BR> My pup seems to know all about this, as she's heavily invested in tennis balls. The bone adds a bit of diversity: <BR> <img src=""> Sun, 27 Apr 2014 13:09:39 EST Lessons Learned from a Soft Diet The primary lesson learned is that I don’t particularly care for it, lol. I had a tooth extracted and bone grafting material placed almost 2 weeks ago now. Some issues (why is an issue never ‘good’?) cropped up and antibiotics were needed, plus an extension of the soft diet, for how long I don’t know yet. Being a nurse, I’m familiar with the definition of a soft diet and have given one to many patients, but I’m a rookie at actually eating one. <BR> <BR> 1. Family urged milkshakes and puddin... Sat, 26 Apr 2014 21:41:03 EST 7 Unusual Races/Runs Grinning here. Some of these races sound like fun, hee. In no particular order: <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> 1. Krispy Kreme Challenge (North Carolina) The Krispy Kreme Challenge sounds like a drunken dare, and it actually started that way as a dare between North Carolina State undergrads. In the Krispy Kreme Challenge runners have one hour to run 2 miles, eat a box of a dozen glazed Krispy Kreme Donuts, before running back the two miles... Wed, 23 Apr 2014 16:41:11 EST 3 Strong Women <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I was looking for something to spice up my non-existent strength program and came across these ladies from the past. Set the Wayback Machine for approximately 1875-1910, Sherman. <BR> <BR> Marie Ford: <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Famous American strongwoman Marie Ford was born in New York in 1900. At 132 lbs. and 5’6” tall, she participated in Marathon, acrobatic... Sun, 20 Apr 2014 16:38:23 EST Mad Dogs and Englishmen ...go out in the morning rain. I'm not truly English and, according to the song, they actually go out in the midday sun. But it's raining: <BR> <img src=""> here, so I thought I'd improvise a bit. <BR> <BR> Stood on the scale this morning and didn't like what I saw, so corralled the dog and took her for another 4 mile hike in woods with the rain coming down. She wasn't especially thrilled getting wet, but seemed to manage okay. We both... Mon, 14 Apr 2014 11:32:09 EST Sunday Smooth I had one of these this morning: <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> If I had to sum up Timmie's coffee in one word it would be: SMOOTH. It was the right thing at the right time, you know? <BR> <BR> One other item that was the right thing at the right time: the 4.1 mile hike in the woods with the dog. That was pretty smooth, too. <em>211</em> And now I'm off to mow. Have a great Sunday all! Sun, 13 Apr 2014 10:13:24 EST Women's Active Wear Clothing When I ran my half-marathon on Sunday it presented an issue. Not of training or logistics, but of what to wear. In training I wear one brand of capri-ish tights made by Fila. They're black, part spandex, don't show anything they're not supposed to show, i.e. sweat, and I love' em. So, with the bottom half covered, the top becomes the thing. <BR> <BR> In training, I wear an old white tech shirt from a 5K done years ago under another long sleeved, albeit cotton, shirt. It's been cold here in O... Tue, 8 Apr 2014 07:58:34 EST ORRRC (Xenia) Half-Marathon Recap The race today was awesome. I had 2 prerequisites going in: it had to cheap and it had to be close. The early bird discount for this race (they also had a full marathon) was $25 bucks, and it was only 40 minutes away. <BR> <BR> The Ohio River Road Runner’s Club (ORRRC) put on a good race. It’s small by any standards at around 2000 entrants and is held in Xenia—a smallish town that was almost blown away by an F5 tornado in 1974. The course was a loop n’ back, mostly on a ‘rails to trails’ typ... Sun, 6 Apr 2014 16:14:29 EST Get Motivated There's a bit more to being or getting motivated than a bunch of words. That being said, here are some favorite words for you (and reminders for me) today: <BR> <BR> All is well. <BR> <BR> Believe you can. <BR> <BR> Everything is possible. <BR> <BR> Stay strong. <BR> <BR> Never give up. <BR> <BR> Seize the day. <BR> <BR> Do it now. <BR> <BR> Make things happen. <BR> <BR> Do your best. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> Wed, 2 Apr 2014 19:08:47 EST Merry Christmas! Or is it Happy April Fish? <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Or how about something more vintage-y and French? And fishy. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Apparently fish were a 'thing' back in the day (an 18th and 19th century day), because they are inherently funny. Children and adults traditionally tacked paper fishes on each other's back as a trick and shout "April fish!" <BR> <BR> Who knew the Victorians were such fu... Tue, 1 Apr 2014 08:15:18 EST Last 'long' run before the longer run My last long run was yesterday at 5.26 miles. Done on the TM, because it's Ohio and there were sheets of rain, then sleet then snow. That's just how we roll over the space of an hour here in Buckeye-Land. And suuuuuure, I coulda gone outside to do the run, but common sense got the better of me for a change, so: nah. I have 2 shorter runs this week, just 30 minutes each and will try to get those done outside. <BR> <BR> I tried my last flavor of GU just for grins: Expresso Love. Sadly, there ... Sun, 30 Mar 2014 14:50:51 EST Thoughts on the scale I find that scale of mine has more ups and downs than an elevator (ba da bum). I go in cycles where I don’t feel like weighing in, to getting on the scale every single day. It can be a harsh mistress. It triggers some emotional eating on my part, because if I don’t see the number I want, it can lead to giving up and giving in to some bad eating habits. Not all the time, but enough to realize it may be a problem. Self-doubt and judgment—I mean who needs that? <BR> <BR> Weight doesn’t tell the... Fri, 28 Mar 2014 21:02:40 EST Don’t be *that* runner (or walker) Since I’ve been running a bit more lately, my list of ‘runner’ pet peeves has grown. Along with these 2 things: <BR> <BR> 1. Don’t stop right in front of me. Despite the fact I may be going the approximate speed of your 100-year old Granny with 3 out of four tennis balls missing from her walker, I cannot stop on a dime. <BR> <BR> 2. If you’re going to hock a loogey or do a snot rocket, do so to the side—waaay to the side. And would it be too much to ask you to check for wind direction befor... Sun, 23 Mar 2014 06:12:44 EST Dude, like this is the best water <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Sometimes, I'm my own worst enemy. Drinking enough water falls into that category. The past few days I've shied away from the tap (a reverse osmosis tap because we live on a well) for the following reason: "I don't know." And that's despite a few sweaty workouts here and there. <BR> <BR> It all came to a head yesterday when I was feeling ugly: no energy, really tired, 'meh' attitude. Then I decided to drink wate... Sat, 22 Mar 2014 07:48:41 EST Kate Hepburn: I Hate Spring. It's a glorious day in Buckeye-Land, and happens to be the first day of spring. I've already run, finished my half-day of work at the library and have eaten semi-good so far. Welp, nothing left to do except listen to Katherine Hepburn singing about why she hates spring: <BR> <BR> <link> </link> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Although it's not my favorite time of year, I don't hate spring. But aft... Thu, 20 Mar 2014 12:08:28 EST My house is making me fat So that's it! I finally found the reason why I'm fat, you know, beside the poor food choices and excessive intake. It's my house! <BR> <BR> 1. Paint in red, yellow or orange tends to enhance the appetite. So no red dining rooms, no matter how vogue. Our dining room happens to be 'Muted Prairie', or as I like to call it: off-white. No worries there. <BR> <BR> 2. You don't have a pantry. The idea being that 'goodie' items are then left on the counter. In truth, the idea behind 'out of sight o... Tue, 18 Mar 2014 11:41:59 EST If I can run 12.5 miles today... then I should be able to manage 13.1 on April 6, no? <BR> <BR> My half-marathon schedule has been sadly interrupted by what I like to call the axis of evil: poor weather, a changed work schedule (don't they know I'm trying to run a half-marathon here? lol) and a back injury. Fortunately, I'm back to running. Unfortunately, I mis-read my schedule this morning. In my defense, it was early and all week long I thought to myself this is the high mileage week. But where I read 12.5, today was rea... Sat, 15 Mar 2014 16:04:00 EST Long Walks and Ruminations “You must walk like a camel, which is said to be the only beast which ruminates when walking.” — Walking by Henry David Thoreau, 1861 <BR> <BR> I’m not so much a philosopher, but I did have an older sister who enlightened me about reading. Thoreau’s book was one that she gave me, and today I took a long walk and ruminated. <BR> <BR> I can sum up this time of year for me in one word: hopeful. Don’t get me wrong, I’m no Pollyanna (although I sniffled at the movie a few weekends back), but the... Tue, 11 Mar 2014 13:50:18 EST Best yet to come With regards to weight loss and getting healthier, I like this sentiment: <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Mon, 10 Mar 2014 21:58:36 EST TROGA I happened upon an old episode of 'Modern Family' and a guy and his sister were at the gym on treadmills. She was running, but he was doing yoga. I thought, no, it can't be real. <BR> <BR> One Google click and I found it's a thing: <BR> <link><BR>38234/Troga-(Treadmill-Yoga) </link> <BR> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Have a happy Sunday all! <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> Sun, 9 Mar 2014 11:28:50 EST Just what the world needs …is another banana muffin recipe. But hey, I have one, lol. I needed something to change up from my bran muffins and those three bananas have been staring at me from their white perch for far too long. Once they get those dark brown spots on them, I pass on outright eating them. A banana snob, I guess. <BR> <BR> Truth be told, my husband bakes a spectacular banana muffin, but when I looked at the ingredients I almost had a coronary—literally and figuratively. Don’t get me wrong, I would to... Fri, 7 Mar 2014 15:54:55 EST Simple Twist of Fate Bob Dylan? Anyone? My apologies to Mr. D for snatching his song title, but it seems to fit the current situation. After shoveling out numerous stalls on Wednesday, I knew my back was barking a bit. But then I zigged with a hay bale when I should have zagged. Something in my right lumbar region/hip was seriously pulled the wrong way. Ouch! I think it may be getting better since it seems more sore than actually painful, but I can't run, or do much in the way of exercise. <BR> <BR> What has oc... Fri, 28 Feb 2014 18:56:46 EST Amicalola Falls Just got back from a short road trip to Georgia to drop off a family member hiking the Appalachian Trail (AT) to Maine. Amicalola Falls to be exact. The park holds the approach trail to the AT (which starts at Springer Mountain), and is really pretty, even in the greyness of 'after winter'. I can believe it would be spectacular in the spring! We did a few very short hikes while there before he left for the big walk, and the falls were flowing. There's just something about running water that's... Wed, 26 Feb 2014 19:38:29 EST LSD today I ran 10.3 miles today. Ha! I've never run that distance before. Here's how it panned out: <BR> <BR> Woke up at 6 to feed the girl and send her outside, luckily she's a dog and didn't seem to mind it. Drank 2 glasses of water, looked at the clock and said 'nah' then headed back to bed. Got up again at, ahem, 8 and ate a 1/3 cup of oatmeal, a few walnuts and a smidge of banana. <BR> <BR> Headed out to my favorite dam trails where I was met with water. Everywhere. Well, even more than usual ... Sat, 22 Feb 2014 14:44:20 EST An exercise in motivation Sorry for the textbook approach, but when there's an issue about, I like to research <em>211</em> . I found out there are several different types of motivation. <BR> <BR> Incentive: a form of motivation that involves rewards, both monetary and nonmonetary. Many people are driven by the knowledge that they will be rewarded in some manner for achieving a certain target or goal. <BR> <BR> Fear: fear motivation involves consequences. This type of motivation is often one that is utilized whe... Thu, 20 Feb 2014 19:21:55 EST Much like Elvis, my mojo has left the building Not for exercising, because I’m still on track—mostly (*shakes fist at lousy icy weather*)—for my half-marathon in April, but for losing weight. According to my calculations, I should be close to 16 pounds down now since joining. I have lost 7-10 pounds, but they are the same pounds, visiting me over and over. <BR> <BR> It’s a very bad cycle and I was going to say it is one of attention to detail, but nah, that’s not it. I’m a reasonably intelligent person, I know how to lose weight (and ... Wed, 19 Feb 2014 13:10:16 EST Valentine left-over Received this today from a friend, it's kinda cute (and just punny enough): <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Hope your Monday went swell! ;-) Mon, 17 Feb 2014 16:55:16 EST Horsing around I got to take care of the these guys and gals today and it makes me so very happy. Bonus? Functional fitness for the win! Here's part of the herd: <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <img src=" Fri, 14 Feb 2014 15:45:41 EST Cross-training Woman does not live by running alone. Maybe she would if she could see the road from time to time this winter, lol. Aided and abetted and motivated by my SP friends I_CAN_AMY and SPEEDYDOG, I found our old (circa 2000?) CycleOps trainer in a dusty corner of the barn and hooked up my bike yesterday. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Oh the burn, the burn! But in a good way. Since I was going nowhere (moderately fast), I was able to watc... Wed, 12 Feb 2014 07:46:45 EST Thick as a brick One picture can show a thousand different feelings or, as in my case, just one. <BR> <BR> 1. Put off my long run of 9.5 miles from Saturday to Sunday because on Friday I tried to slow down a draft horse attempting to wipe out on a sheet of ice and snow near the barn as she beat feet to the pasture. Note to self: Not a good idea. <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> 2. It iced over Sunday morning, then snowed Sunday afternoon making it a not-go... Tue, 11 Feb 2014 13:49:06 EST Olympics in black and white Olympics anyone? As a kid I only watched the skating and few ski jumping events of the winter ones--until Vancouver came along. Can you say curling? I fell in love with a sport that involves brooms and stones and ice--who knew? Here are a few pictures from the Olympics of yesteryear: <BR> <BR> American speed skaters, 1924 <BR> <img src=""> <BR> British curling team, 1924 <BR> <img src=" Sat, 8 Feb 2014 07:31:45 EST Treadmill high I didn't do the treadmill this morning, but I have done it off and on this winter. This is the first hearing about the 'treadmill high', though. Here's the Urban Dictionary's definition: <BR> <BR> n. The effect that occurs shortly after finishing a treadmill workout, in which, after running in place for a long period of time, walking on static ground gives the sensation that you're body is moving twice as fast as you're walking. Often causes sufferer to walk abnormally slow or, in hilarious ... Fri, 7 Feb 2014 15:31:42 EST It's gloomy out, yo “She turned to the sunlight <BR> And shook her yellow head, <BR> And whispered to her neighbor: <BR> "Winter is dead.” <BR> --A.A. Milne, When We Were Very Young <BR> <BR> I don't get S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder), but it *is* a little gloomy. After living for a bunch of years in Texas where we complained about the heat and constant sun (what did we know?), we moved back to Ohio about 3 years ago. But even now the winter 'blah-ness' sometimes gets to me. <BR> <BR> Couldn't... Wed, 5 Feb 2014 08:40:20 EST Halfway there Perhaps a smidge from halfway, but close enough. I'm 'almost' halfway through the Galloway training for my half-marathon. And thanks to the kind people of the Galloway team who talked me down off the ledge from leaping to another training program, I think I'll make it all the way through, barring any serious injuries. <BR> <BR> The Galloway schedule is like nothing else I've seen, it routinely alternates easy and hard weeks. Today I did 3 miles, next Sunday is 9.5 miles. In-between, I run tw... Sun, 2 Feb 2014 13:16:05 EST Sneezles and wheezles Ugh, flu season is here! How do I know? The last two times I went to work there were sick people—and I’m talking about staff, not patients. <BR> <BR> Sneezles by A.A. Milne <BR> <BR> Christopher Robin <BR> Had wheezles <BR> And sneezles, <BR> They bundled him <BR> Into <BR> His bed. <BR> They gave him what goes <BR> With a cold in the nose, <BR> And some more for a cold <BR> In the head. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> A recent s... Fri, 31 Jan 2014 18:34:15 EST Waking up against my will I've never been a big fan of these fuzzy lid covers: <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> But I gotta tell you, with the house set at 62 degrees at night, an outside temp of minus 10 degrees, and a draft coming from somewhere (somewhere!) into the bathroom--I'm willing to change my mind. Because, hoo-wee, that'll wake ya up in the mornin'! <BR> <BR> Bonus cat pic: <BR> <img src=""> Tue, 28 Jan 2014 06:42:38 EST 8 mile run--heigh-yo! (plus fuel experiment) The schedule had 8 miles today and it was a toss-up if it was going to get done on the 'mill or the road. Having spent all week on the treadmill, I wanted to go outside. Hm, so I did! <BR> <BR> Had a minor issue when I found the dam trails where I usually go were closed, but only to cars. Went the 'back way', parked and started out. <BR> <BR> Weather: light snow in addition to the 2-3" fresh on the ground, temperature of 14 degrees <BR> Mileage: 8.3 (with cool-down) <BR> Intervals: 1:1, wit... Sun, 26 Jan 2014 14:58:26 EST