Happy Memorial Day!

Hi friends!  Sorry I didn’t post yesterday—I was actually VERY busy with blog stuff, just not writing.  I have taken the plunge to self-hosted, registered me a fancy domain and such, and am in the process of getting the new site up, running, and pretty.  I’m hoping it’ll be live within the next week or so.  Whee!

Here is what I did yesterday.

I attempted to make “chocolate chip bread” in my bread maker.  Epic fail.  It burned and the yeast never activated.  Into the trash it went.

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I took a quick break from bread baking for a run.  And holy hell, it was a hot, hilly, and awful one.

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The good news is my shoes feel good (but don’t they always, the first few runs?).  The bad news is that I chalked this one, also, up in the fail category.  I ran a mile and a half (in 88 degree heat) and then started to feel my chest constricting/asthma acting up, and walked home.  Tim snapped the photo above upon my return home.  I am NOT a creature of heat.  But, I suppose they all can’t be good runs, you know?

I then baked a more successful loaf of bread—challah this time.

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Buttery and eggy and yum.

This afternoon, I decided to avenge yesterday’s bad run, and ran 2 miles in 19:20ish.  It was still hot, so I didn’t want to stay out too long, and I’m kind of getting back in the swing of things still.  I’m not going to beat myself up about it.  It was a good time for being a hilly run!  Unfortunately, once I took my shoes off, my right leg just seized up on the inside from my foot to my ankle and up my shin.  I suspect it’s because of the orthotics—I didn’t wear them yesterday, just to get a feel for my new shoes, and put them in today.  Anything with a lot of arch support tends to do that to me.  Luckily, I iced and it’s feeling much better.  But…gah.  Why can’t this be easy?

Today, Tim and I bought a grill!

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We prepared delicious burgers and grilled mushroom skewers. 

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YUM.  The beef we’ve been eating lately is local and delicious.  I also had a little fruit salad on the side!  Since getting back from vacation, Tim and I have consumed almost an entire pound of strawberries, a whole pineapple and a whole cantaloupe.

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Oh, and Fat Tire.  Have I mentioned that I LOVE beer?  All summer long I crave beer.  I can’t drink a LOT of it in one sitting, but…beer is good.

I also wanted to give my new KitchenAid a whirl, so I made Bakerella’s Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

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They are packed and ready to be sent in to work with Tim tomorrow!

Verdict on the KitchenAid?  I predict many, many happy hours spent together.  But is it just me, or is making red velvet cake 10,000 times messier than making other kinds of cake?  It looked like a massacre in the kitchen when I was done!  And my iPhone is coated in powdered sugar from the icing.  Whoops.

Anyway, this week will yet again be a little crazy—tomorrow is a normal workday, but Wednesday I fly out to Fort Lauderdale until Sunday.  Onward and upward!

What’s your favorite kitchen appliance?

Good omens

Today, Tim and I met for a lunch date at The Mixx. I was really impressed with their giant salads last time so we thought we’d try again.

I’ll take good omens in any form I can get them.  Like our order number.  (I feel like Kath!)  13 would have been better…but I’ll take it!

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I ordered a grilled chicken sandwich with Brie on a pretzel roll.  (I would probably eat a dirty sock if it was on a pretzel roll.)0407 002

I was nonplussed.  The chicken was basically the dry, cut up kind they put in salads, and it was just not good.  And it took them 15 minutes to get it to me!   Next time I’ll get a salad again.

More pretty springtime porn:

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Aside from the allergies, I love spring.  There’s a reason we’re getting married in May, and it’s because of all this gorgeous junk out there.

After the gym, I went for my last official run of my training plan!  I did two fast miles in about 18:30.  I felt great while I was running, but once I stopped..my left knee, shin, and ankle started aching.  I took the aggressive approach—I put on my Zensah compression sleeves immediately, and went home and massaged my leg with ice cubes for awhile.  Pain gone!  I’m going to take it easy—REALLY easy—until the race, and keep icing and foam rolling and crossing my fingers.

In other news, some components of various bridesmaids’ gifts arrived today!

The most adorable baby hat ever:

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And a Colts sweatshirt for the die-hard fan:

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Annnd the RSVP count shoots up again—67 yes, 44 no, 93 delinquent. 

This week has been pretty boring, but the fun starts Saturday!  Here’s what’s going on:

  • Saturday: Half Marathon! 
  • Sunday: Second bridal shower with Tim’s family
  • Monday: Get fitted for orthotics!
  • Tuesday-Thursday night: Vegas, baby!  I’ll be at a conference for work.  (And I’ve never been before!)
  • Friday-Monday: Napa Valley

Whee!  I’m excited.

Any must-sees in Vegas or Napa?  (I’ll be at Caesar’s Palace!)

Let’s talk pain.

I get a lot of comments on the blog to the effect of “Oh my gosh, how can you walk/run/live on those things?” re: Blistersquatch and his various spawn.  So I figured I should talk about my pain philosophy as it relates to exercise.

(Source.)

On a very basic level, I believe there are three kinds of pain: good pain, neutral pain, and bad pain. Good pain (see also, soreness) is the way you feel after a tough workout, when your muscles are singing and letting you know they exist every time they twitch.  It hurts, yes, but it’s self-inflicted pain mixed with pride.  I work out through good pain, usually, because getting blood flowing helps make it better.  Bad pain is the totally unintentional pain that comes with injury and illness.  Bad pain cannot be worked through; working out through bad pain makes it worse.  When there is bad pain, I skip the gym.

I classify my blisters as the third type of pain: neutral.  They hurt, yes.  They are self-inflicted to the extent that I know my running will cause them, but I am too stubborn (stupid?) to stop.  When I run, after about a mile, the pain sensors in my feet just shut off and I don’t feel the sharp, stinging sensation I cringe at all day long.  But once I stop, they turn back on.  I can live with them, so long as they don’t get too horrible and the problem contains itself to blisters and doesn’t extend into other issues.  If I can contain the pain to blisters alone, I will be okay.  It’s my form of pain management.

I run through the pain of my blisters because I know that if I stop, I may not start again.  Me having crappy feet is not something that’s going to change miraculously any time soon.  At this point, I’m fairly convinced my feet will never be normal and this is something I’ll have to deal with forever.  I do my best–I watch closely for signs of infection and try to keep the area as clean as possible.   It’s a handicap, but I will work through it, and around it.  It will not get the best of me.

That said, even though this is neutral pain, it will occasionally (like it did yesterday) shift into bad pain, where I can tell that running on the blisters would cause an injury or be generally detrimental to my health.  I can tell if I’m rolling my foot funny or guarding a certain area.  Then I stay home.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m going to keep looking for a solution to this.  But it’s not an excuse to give up.  It’s an obstacle that sucks and for now I just have to deal with it.

There’s also sickness pain.  Personally, I follow the above-the-neck/below-the-neck theory with a period-related exception.  If my stomach is upset, or my lungs are stuffy with asthma, I won’t run.  If it’s a sniffly nose and a headache, I will.  The period exception, obviously, is that any PMS-related pain, unless completely debilitating, is not grounds for an unexcused rest day.  99% of the time, exercise makes me feel better: sweating gets my muscles loose and nasal passages clear.  I also feel better mentally, because if I stay home and mope about being sick, I feel even worse.

What’s your pain philosophy?