30 November 2008

2 wheel insanity

Actually once we got moving this morning it wasn't too bad but at 8:30 a.m. I was seriously wondering what possessed me to agree to a 40-50 mile bicycle ride in late November. Cold, damp, dreary 47 F temp this morning when we headed out, I was glad that James decided he would be the sag wagon 'cause I was really, really thinking I wouldn't last too long, LOL. We had 9 people altogether and thankfully nobody was interested in going 20+mph right at the start. There was some confusion in the beginning (and middle!) about the route so we ended up going to Lonoke instead of Carlisle like originally planned.

We stopped at Perry's restaurant approx. 25 miles in for a breakfast break. I've ate there before, food is decent but our service was very slow yesterday. Too long of a break to suit me, had to get warmed up all over again for the final 12-15 miles. The sun did come out while we were eating, very happy to see that. There was a fair size hill just before getting back to our starting point and I think the guys leading were very surprised to see that I was right off their wheels. Shoot, I train with Gary R., he kills me with hilly routes :-), that was just a speed bump compared to what he comes up with.

Got to meet a couple of other women cyclists, one I'd spoke to at the Tour de Pumpkin in Russellville. I knew she looked familiar but we were on Hwy 70, 1/2 between Kerr Rd. and Lonoke before it dawned on me where I'd seen her at. James' services as the sag wagon guy came in handy at Perry's restaurant, one of the guys' seat post had broke. No way to fix it there so James drove him back to Cabot.

Told Gary at one point that after Christmas I was going to buy a trainer and wasn't coming back out on the road until at least March, lol! Running in the cold is tolerable but the bicycle is a whole another deck of cards, brrr.

Altogether I did 44.67 miles in 2:53:15. Not fast but other than the short ride on turkey day, I haven't been on the road bike since the end of October.

James and I tried to go out for a run yesterday evening but he started having severe heartburn about 15 minutes in. We walked back to the house then I tried for a couple of miles more but had cut it short at 1.7 miles because of my own digestive issues. Guess Burger King wasn't a good idea for lunch!

Hmmm, kind of a boring post, sorry everybody. Maybe more entertaining next time but it also maybe next spring before I'm 1/2 way chipper again. I'll try not to depress y'all too much this winter.

29 November 2008

December race?

Ok, I just need one more race for December to complete my yearly goal of running at least one race a month for 2008. Ok, ok, I did miss June but I had a good excuse, really! Doctors get kind of cranky when you try to run with a broken clavicle. I would love to do the "Dashing through the Light 5k" in Conway but it's on a Tuesday night and I think my dispatcher wouldn't like it if I told him I couldn't make my delivery in Laredo because of a race. I just love the idea of a night race! Yes, I know I've said that I don't like running at night but that's because I'm usually running solo. It's different if you're surrounded by other semi-crazy people running too. Hmmm, if anybody finds a race in central Arknasas that isn't on Arkansas Runner please let me know, thanks!!

Holiday driving

Wow, you could tell the gas prices had come down by the traffic this week. Not only was the I35 corridor packed in Texas, people were driving very aggressively. Had one especially close call when somebody north of the Temple-Belton area decided that the car passing me in front of them was going too slow. I thought they were going to rearrange the front end of my truck when they camethisclose to me trying to pass the other car. They ended up getting maybe 5 cars ahead of us the traffic was so heavy so it's not like they gained a whole lot of distance.

What do I like about driving at holiday time? Open fuel islands and empty parking spots. I actually was able to get a parking spot at the Sulphur Springs Pilot after dark.

What do I dislike about it? Bumper to bumper traffic and cars parking in the truck spaces in the rest areas. Come on people, y'all can stop anywhere, why you would want to stop in a ratty rest area is beyond me. It's not like I have much choice in the matter when I'm pulling a 53' foot trailer.

Monday I found out that Rich Logistics is the main company pulling what was part of our loads out of TN. Part of it is going up to Ceva in Mt. Juliet to be reloaded on our trailers but the remainder is being hauled by Rich which is mainly an owner-operator company. They're loading the boxes on them because GM is not having to factor in the cost of a back-haul for the return racks like they do the company I work for.

Nice little recovery run of just over 3 miles at Pulaski before getting loaded. Didn't push it too hard because my legs HURT from the 10k Saturday. Wednesday was a 4+ mile run at Pearsall, was wanting to get in 6 but was having tummy problems and the 2nd time I had to stop for the bathroom I just said to hell with it and called it quits for the day. Thursday was a 5 miler at home, beautiful day, wore shorts and a tee but just couldn't get in the groove for some reason. Later that afternoon I took the road bike out for a 13.88 mile ride, couldn't pass up the gorgeous weather!! I am out of shape on the bike though, it's been a month since I'd rode any distance and just that little bit wore me out (I'm sure having to drive 2.5 hrs home and the 5 mile run didn't have anything to do with why I was tired, LOL!).

Today it was back to being nasty. We have a 40-50 mile ride planned for Saturday morning and it's going to be cold and damp. Not looking forward to it at all. Blech, I'm ready for spring.

Kelownagirl has been doing the 100 pushup challenge and has motivated me to start back with the pushups. I'm currently on week 2, column 2 and tomorrow will be day 3. I was struggling with day 2's sets so day 3 may be a bit much, we'll have to see. It's been frustrating not being able to do as many as I could back in the spring and this is a great easy way to build back up.

The best news of the week--James has run just over 3 miles twice without stopping (Sunday and Tuesday)!!! Yay!!!!!!!!!! I am so proud of him!!!!!

Spa 10k race report

A very belated race report from the Spa 10k in Hot Springs, AR last week (sorry Annette!!). Where to start? It was COLD, COLD, COLD--as in below freezing temps cold, brrrr. This was my first time running this race but I kind of had some idea of how challenging it was going to be from the race description. What didn't help was that I'd been slacking off on my training for a couple of weeks (did I mention that I don't like winter?) so I wasn't quite as prepared for it as I should have been. Oh, it didn't help my attitude any when the directions on the website and google maps were wrong--neither James or I are familiar with the area so we got a little lost.

Great swag--long sleeve t-shirt, runners vest (way too big though), and a very nice New Balance backpack--well worth the race fee. I love races with excellent goodie bags, LOL! Chip timing is always nice too unless your chip doesn't work like Vicki's. I was wondering why they weren't having us double-check to make sure they were working properly before the race.

Managed to find some of the Cruiser women in the bathroom when I went in to take my final pre-race potty break but lost them again until a few minutes before the race start. Annette gives the best hugs by the way, if you're feeling down you need to find her asap! Lined up with Brenda 'cause normally we're pretty close to the same speeds but she's training to Boston qualify and she kicked my butt Saturday!! Her hard work is definitely paying off. By the way, why don't you have a blog Brenda? You need one, I love listening to you.

Ok back to the race. Ummm, it's one giant hill!! My legs hurt until Wednesday, I'm guessing I should have warmed up a little bit beforehand, ha-ha. It was a bit much to take off that fast on cold legs. We did have one car that passed us while I was on the mountain, could have been a bad situation because there were runners stretched out across both lanes. None of us were expecting any traffic. Beautiful scenery and there quite a few people watching and cheering once we got back into town.

Final time was 52:53 which is an almost 5 minute improvement over my last (and first!) 10k time of 57:43 so new p.r.!! 29/150 females, 114/310 overall, 6/28 age group. Because the 2nd female overall was in my age group, I ended up with the 5th place age group award. Brenda finished in 51:39 (told ya she kicked my butt!!), excellent time! I'm too lazy right now to look up everybody else's times but they can be found here--Spa 10k results. I know Lisa Fe. was 3rd overall--she's FAST.

Starbucks coffee (yum!) and baked potatoes were available afterwards, both were most welcome after that challenging run. All the Cruisers huddled up afterwards waiting on the awards ceremony--I think that's my major complaint, it was held outside. We were freezing and it was hurting my legs standing around for so long in the cold on the concrete. We did get to meet a new Cruiser (and future Cruiser hopefully!), Ethan and his wife Stephanie. Very, very nice people (and he's another speedy one, yay!).

21 November 2008


Blech, just feel down tonight. Not sure what's wrong other than the usual holiday blahs. Had one great run (monday) and two screwed up attempts at a run (yesterday). Oh well, Supernatural comes on in 10 minutes, maybe that will cheer me up. Stay warm everybody.

16 November 2008

Quote of the Day

"Running is insanity in an organized form."

James this morning before our run, LOL!

15 November 2008

What day is it again?

Picking up on Tuesday has completely thrown my inner clock off, lol! Did get loaded on time so that made for an easy week as far as work goes.

Monday's mountain bike ride wasn't as successful as the previous 2 times. Searcy's trail is not marked very well and with all the leaves covering the ground I had a hard time even finding it most of the time. I fell sideways once (added a few bruises and a couple of sore spots on my knee and shin) and slid backwards on a steep part another time so I was getting a leetle frustrated. I don't think the headache I woke up with was helping my balance or my mood either but I did start to enjoy it before the 5 mile loop was done. It is a major workout, I was dripping with sweat before we finished and it was cold out.

Tuesday was misting rain off and on and they had told me that I would get loaded early so I just decided to do a short run on Crescent View with Elsie. It was GREAT!!! Kind of slow because I had her on the leash but it was one of those days where you felt like running forever. We did get mobbed by the miniature dachsund pack (they're multiplying, there's now 3 of them) and I watched a coyote lope across some of the fields that had been cleared. Very cool (the coyote, not the wannabe dogs).

Wednesday sucked......There's road construction blocking where I usually run at Sulphur Springs so I did the Mt. Vernon rest area loop. I don't know what it is about that location but I rarely have a good run there and Wed. was no exception. Weather was ok, a little humid but the temp wasn't bad. Was going to run intervals but ended up doing fartleks instead because I couldn't seem to get a rhythm going. Miserable, couldn't breath, stupid side stitch, absolutely couldn't wait to quit, yuck.........Drove on to S.S. for a shower and had to wait for over an hour, grrrrrrr.

Thursday was.............okay. It wasn't a bad run overall but I did have a hard time for part of it. Ended up taking 3 short walk breaks and at one point I was having to run into the wind and it was killing me. Started getting the stitch again on my right side and was having to do the real slow breath in through the nose, out through the mouth routine and telling myself to HTFU. Haven't been sleeping well (mother-in-law was having some health issues this week) so that was a contributing factor to my issues Wed. and Thurs. If I'm tired I tend to tense up my shoulders and I don't/can't breath very well. Ran 5.62 by myself, then 1.43 with Elsie (who has now destroyed THREE cell phone power supply cords--anybody want a miniature schnauzer?).

I was tired last night so decided to sleep at Gurdon instead of driving on home. Good thing, even at 10 a.m. the fuel stop I park at was packed. Lots of people laid over and waiting on loads. I was listening to a J.B. Hunt o/o and a Maverick driver talking while I was loading my stuff into the pickup about how long they'd been sitting.

Today's run kind of made up for the previous 2. Got to run in the rain (I love running in the rain!) but I got a late start so had to cut it short (don't like running in the dark!) at 3.2 miles. Tried to take Elsie out with me, she was ok until a car would pass us and then she'd freak out because with it raining she thought they were thunder monsters.

Tomorrow's early morning bicycle ride is cancelled because of the colder temps so we're going to meet for breakfast instead. I'll try to get a ride in later in the day but it's only supposed to get up to 47 F and is going to be windy so don't know how successful I'll be. Hmm, now that James and I know kind of where the Searcy trail is we might try that without a guide (and maybe James will slow down for me!).

10 November 2008

In the creek

Tiny pic of me in the creek at Cedar Glades park in Hot Springs retrieving James' disc. The water was only knee deep at that spot but closer to waist deep where the disc landed.

Disc golf Sunday

Had my best game ever yesterday!!!!!! 13 over par, had several holes that were par, most were 1 over and only one that was 2 over. It was awesome to finally feel like I had some control over where the discs went and was getting some distance. Larger group than normal, It was James and me, Jason and his sis, Will (great kid!), Bill, and a couple of Jason's friends. It was cold again, although not as bad as Saturday so we had the course to ourselves. We're hoping to keep this up through winter so we don't get out of practice. My only problem is that it's the same day I'm supposed to do my long run (which I haven't done the past 2 weeks). Need to readjust my schedule somehow.

James and I went out for his run/walk Sunday evening just before the sun went down. I never realized there were so many people that used the section of trail closest to us in the evening. It went great, 10 minute warmup walk, then 25 minutes running, 2.5 minute walk break, then another 11 minute running segment. Total for me was 4.26 miles--James had a longer cooldown walk so you could probably add another .5 mile to his total (I had the garmin). Pretty impressive for a guy he claims he can't run!! I even think he's starting to enjoy it.

I feel weird being home on a Monday morning but we're going to take advantage of it. Supposed to meet Jason at noon so he can guide us on Searcy's mountain bike trail. Evidently the trail is not marked so you don't know which sections are the easy ones. More bruises on my calves--I've got to learn to get away from those pedals when dismounting.

Flowers in Laredo

These are from a tree at Penske in Laredo

Fall colors


Creek that runs along the bicycle trail--Ella section

On the run

Whew, I'm going to have to go back to work to get some rest this week. Speaking of work, ended up with an extra day off due to Penske rearranging how some of our loads are being shipped (and the economy slowing). I will probably not know until Friday afternoons whether I will be picking up on Monday or Tuesdays from here on out. They're just going to be shipping racks out on my trailer instead of the usual mix of racks and boxes. The good news is that I should be getting out at the proper time since it was always the boxed product causing the delays. What's funny is that the boxes are now being picked up by Ceva and taken to their Mt. Juliet terminal where they're being reloaded onto our company's trailers! Part of James' load last Tuesday included boxes that I normally haul.

I didn't get to post last Monday that I actually got out of Pulaski before lunchtime which made my week a lot easier--3 or 4 hours can make a huge difference on your driving schedule. I actually got to drive through Austin and San Antonio before the evening rush hours, woo-hoo!!

Wednesday's run was at Pearsall just after dawn, an easy 3.76 miles--although I was having to fight the wind. Wanted more miles but didn't have time to sqeeze it in, I was needing to get back home to take my mother-in-law to a doctor's appt. in Little Rock Thursday.

Ah, Thursday. What a day.......Woke up to it raining so had to get out for a run. I absolutely love running in the rain (as long as it's not too cold!). Did a warmup and headed out to Country Club to do some hill repeats. It was gorgeous with the leaves falling and the light rain, almost made me forget about the huge hill I was trying to run up :-).

After that was rush, rush, rush. Fast shower, drove over 50 miles to Baptist Medical with my m.i.l., drove back to Searcy to drop her off, then back up to Bald Knob to move my truck (there were only 2 parking spots available the night before and I wanted to move it to a safer spot). Back to Searcy for a flu shot, while I was waiting at the clinic to get stuck, Gary called me and said he wanted to go for a bicycle ride at 3:30.

He's test-riding mountain bikes himself and the one that they'd ordered for me was assembled and waiting. I have no clue what our mileage was 'cause neither of us had computers but it did include a ride up Hitler Hill--ouch, 2 hill workouts in 1 day may be a bit much. Gary made it to the top before me, but I jokingly told him it was because my legs were already tired from the 4.75 mile run that morning.

This is my new baby (well mine and the bike shop's, LOL), a 2009 Jamis Durango Femme in Pistachio and Black. It's BEAUTIFUL!!!! Oh, disc brakes totally rock, by the way.

After getting tortured by Gary, I rushed home to change and then it was another trip south to N. Little Rock to pick James up at our yard--he's still having some issues with his International. According to the shop there are several of the new ones with the same problem and James is the only one willing to take the time to write it up repeatedly and leave it with them. We ended up having to take it to the International dealer Sat. so hopefully they can find the problem.

03 November 2008

Scenic view

The three pics are from this morning's run in Pulaski, TN. I think the name of the road is White House Lane or something like that. It's not very long, it connects Amos Hamlett up with the next road north on 31. It was very pretty and just something a little different to shake the route up. Today's total was 5.5 miles--3 miles on Crescent View, then back to the plant for a bathroom stop and the remainder was in the cow fields with Elsie plus the little side jaunt on the dirt road.

Today's run

Today's run

Pretty rock wall

Pretty rock wall

02 November 2008


First off have to give a shout out to Curtis D. from the Cabot Cruisers. He had a p.r. at the Wynne marathon yesterday and just has one more race in the Arkansas RRCA Grand Prix to run (he has run every single race in the G.P. this year). He's also a truck driver but not over the road now. Let's hear it for the running (and cycling!) truck drivers!!

Did I mention that I'm sore today? Whew, mountain biking is a full body workout. I also forgot to list the mileage from yesterday. We did 11.67 miles in 1:49:47, just over a 6 mph average. Doesn't sound like much but I think that's pretty darn good. I managed to hobble out the door this morning for a 4.15 mile solo run. Stopped back at home for a bathroom break and took back off with James for his run/walk. We ended up with 3.93 miles in 50:17 (10 minute warmup walk, followed by two 10 minute run intervals separated by 3 minute walk breaks, then 5 minute run, walked the remainder of the time for a cooldown).

I'm supposed to actually ride over that?!!!!!!

Getting ready to ride

Can you tell I'm nervous?

Jason studying the map trying to figure out
where we missed the trail turnoff about 5 miles

I'm still alive but do have a cut on
my right ankle from catching it on
a pedal--ouch

James on his new bike

Rest break after coming up this........

Which is steeper than it appears

This is part of what we still have to go up

King of the hill

Just thought this was pretty


Having fun--yes, I was the only one in the group
that wore a helmet.

After the ride--we're working on Brian to quit

I survived my first ever attempt at mountain biking and even had a lot of fun in the process. This is something that was completely new to me, never rode a bicycle as a kid, never been on a dirt bike so had absolutely no experience with getting up and over obstacles on 2 wheels. Legs are all bruised up mostly from my feet slipping off the pedals. Very timid in the beginning, so was doing a lot of walking the first 1.5 miles but I was determined I wasn't going to slow the guys down too much. Oh yeah, I ended up being the only girl-Petra's wrist was still sore from a rollerblading incident a few weeks ago.

The downhills spooked me so I never truly let the bicycle build up to full speed. Just handled it like you would a big truck going down a hill, slowed down to the speed I wanted to go before starting the descent. James on the other hand is a speed demon with the downhills, he was having a blast!! Jason of course was the experienced mountain biker, he pretty much was having to wait on the rest of us. I know his secret though, he would blast up the hills and then have time to catch his breath before we caught up so it would seem like he wasn't having to work at all, LOL. Uphills is where I would usually catch and pass Brian and James especially towards the end--I have more endurance from the road biking and running. Now I know why Lisa M. from the Cabot Cruisers is sooooo strong climbing the hills on a road bike.

Switchbacks are another problem area for me. Going downhill I would occasionally lose my balance and have the back end of the bicycle kick out on me--never wrecked but had to grab a tree once to keep from wiping out. Brian did wipe out once that I know of in the same situation. Uphill switchbacks would also slow me down and there were a couple of places that had rocks in the turns that usually ended up with me walking.

After the ride we decided to play 9 holes of disc golf, Cedar Glades has a very challenging course but it was a nice change from our flat course. On one of the holes I ended up throwing my disc across a creek so had to take off my shoes and socks to wade across. While I was over there, James and Jason both threw their discs INTO the water. Since I was already over there I went ahead and retrieved their discs. Jason's wasn't bad to get to but James' was in a deep part--would have been waist deep on me. Jason passed me a very big branch so that I could use it to drag the disc into shallower water--he should have some very good pictures of me attempting to get to it.

01 November 2008

Monthly mileage

I had the highest month ever for running mileage--117.4 miles in October. Woo-hoo!!!!!! Should have been 120+ but didn't get the time to get out the door before the sun went down. I did get 7-8 miles on a mountain bike in so wasn't a total slacker. By the way did I mention that I LOVE my road bike, shew those knobby tires really wear you out quick and it's not near as easy to get going, LOL!

I've posted a few pictures today that I've taken with my phone. I'm very impressed with how well most of them turned out.

Wednesday's run was at Pearsall--it was ok but I was feeling a little blah. Had to force myself out the truck door. 2 nights of staying up until after midnight did me in, can't seem to sleep past 7 a.m no matter how late I've been up.

Thursday, I dawdled around driving home. James was going to have to leave his truck at NLR for service so I decided to just wait for him to catch up with me so I wouldn't have to make a trip back down in our pickup--we just rode home together in my big truck. I did have a very good run at Malvern, they are building a white water recreation area on the north east side of the Ouachita river with trails, picnic areas, and restrooms and I went sight-seeing with Elsie on the first part of my run.

To get to the park area we had to cross under the freeway overpass. Well to Elsie the traffic overhead sounded like the thunder monster. The first time she was ok but on the return trip she took off at a full-out run, I couldn't catch her and she wouldn't stop when I yelled at her to. Usually she's very good at stopping dead in her tracks when she's told to but not yesterday. She finally slowed enough where I could catch her and put her back on the leash but she immediately took off running again once I had it snapped. She drug me all the way back to the truck then hid in her crate. She has some issues when it comes to thunder, lol. I had planned to do some hill repeats but there were construction vehicles on the hill that I'd planned to use so I just found a more moderate incline and combined hill repeats with speed intervals. Ouch! The hike up to Starbucks afterwards seemed endless. My legs were still a little achy today.

Oh, minor gripe about Starbucks yesterday, either the pumpkin scone or the smoothie had artificial sweeteners. I was in pain from a bloated stomach the rest of the day, felt like a space alien was growing in there! Excellent service though.

Interesting fellow

This is Todd, a guy we met at our local bike shop last week. He's riding across the country on a Surly Long Haul Trucker (Love the name!!!). He started on the east coast and had a setback in the D.C. area when an accident left him stranded for several weeks with a broken elbow. Very interesting guy and I'm totally in awe that he's doing this cross-country trip solo on a bicycle. He also is very tall, he made James look short!

Butterfly massacre in progress

This is what it looks like from the driver's seat when butterflies attack! Also gaining on one of the few companies that I can pass with a 65 mph truck.


Cottula, TX

Cottula, TX butterfly and flowers

Butterfly massacre on 35

Butterfly massacre on 35

Cross your fingers

Trying out something new tomorrow--mountain biking! Excited and nervous--hoping I don't have any major mishaps. A group of us are driving down tomorrow to Hot Springs to ride what is supposed to be some of the easiest trails in Arkansas. Ha-ha, bunny slopes for cyclists!! Four newbies and 1 hard-core mountain biker--should be fun (I hope). James already has his mountain bike on layaway, I'm waiting for the Durango femme to come in before I make a decision but if it's anything like the guys Durango it's the one I'll get. I'm still planning on a new road bike but the manufacturer of the one I've chosen said to check back in mid-November and MAYBE then they'd have some bikes.