21 April 2009

ehh photo

Tried to get a decent pic with my phone of the new pink pedals but as you can see it didn't turn out too well. Trust me, they look awesome though!

20 April 2009

Cool street rod

Seen in Austin on Friday, very cool rat rod with a rockabilly chick driving. Love it!


19 April 2009

Rush, rush, rush

The unexpected layover Tuesday put me waaaay behind on getting back home for Saturday. If everything had gone right I would've been home Friday morning but it wasn't to be. Thursday I also had an unexpected delay but it was James' truck this time and not mine (whew). He blew a radiator hose out when he was headed north and fortunately I was where I could stop at an auto parts store to get the parts for him. If I had been south of him he was looking at a 4-5 hour wait on the side of the road before somebody could have gotten out to him and replaced the hose plus would have cost the company approx. $250. Instead, it was only a couple of hours and we did it for $60.

Yes, I actually helped replace the hose, I wasn't just standing there handing him tools, LOL! It blew out in a very hard to get area so my smaller hands and arms came in useful. What did frustrate me was that even though we were on a 4 lane stretch of road only about 40% of the traffic moved over into the fast lane while we were doing the repairs even when there would be no reason for them not to move over. It wasn't just 4-wheelers that weren't giving us room, there were a number of big trucks crowding us too. Please people, if you see somebody broke down on the side of the road, move over to the other lane if it's at all safe to do so. We were well off onto the shoulder but it's just common courtesy. Plus you never know when somebody is not paying attention and might step out close to the lane of traffic while they're working on their vehicle. And if you've ever been on the shoulder, you know how it rocks your cars when somebody blows by you at 65+mph. Just think about what that's doing to a person who weighs much less than the car.

Anyway, I didn't get to N. Little Rock until Saturday morning. James came and picked me up at our drop yard and we drove to Ward for the 5k at 0800. A friend was the race director and it was excellent! Very nice course, the best raffic control, awesome goodie bags, and from what I hear great prizes! I finished 7th overall (male and female) which surprised the heck out of me. Not much sleep and I wasn't feeling good until I started running. Once I got moving though, I just cruised. Had no plans to kill myself on this 5k for a pr, just wanted a decent finishing time and the only time I pushed hard was sprinting for the finish line, wanted to get past the woman just in front of me, LOL. Garmin is showing 3.2 miles in 25:12 but I don't know what the actual finish time is because like always forgot to turn it off right away. Won my age group so think I was probably 4th woman across the line. No results posted yet and we weren't able to stay for the awards because of needing to get back down to the Little Rock area for the alzheimer's walk that started at 1000.

Another friend was director or co-director of the Little Rock Alzheimer's Memory Walk. I have some busy friends, LOL, I feel lazy next to them! This was another awesome event, we walked across the Big Dam Bridge and back. Elsie was happy because she was finally getting to get out and move with us (it was overcast and I didn't want to get in the middle of the 5k, have it thunder then have to carry her all the way!). Elsie also got to make friends with a 9 month old Great Dane--absolutely gorgeous dog, but HUGE!

Visited with friends afterwards for about 30 minutes then it was off to Russellville to my sister's house for Mike's birthday cake at 1300. I was absolutely starting to reek at this point so the second thing I did once we got there was shower. First thing was hug the niece and nephew (duh!). I had been craving a burger all week so was glad I hadn't stopped Friday for a Whataburger before leaving Texas because I got to eat a very delicious turkey burger at my sis's (with avocado, mmmmm). Also had fries and german chocolate cake so it was a heckuva diet cheat day :-). Finally got home about 1630 and was flat out exhausted. I even had fallen asleep in the pickup leaning against the door with Elsie's duck as a pillow between Atkins and Conway.

Unfortunately I have a Monday appt this week so will have to leave out later today but if everything works out right I should get home early. Hoping this coming weekend will be nice, I'd love to get some cycling miles in on the road.

What you don't want to see.....

.........is the looks of dismay and pity on your friends' faces when you start describing an ache you've been having. Yep, not formally diagnosed but evidently I have plantar fasciitis or a pretty good imitation of it. For a couple of months I have been having what I describe as a stone bruise on the inside bottom of my foot in the heel area. Achy when I get up in the morning, usually ok once I get to moving, feels great when I run but walking aggravates it. Grrrrrrrrr, I don't want this!!!!!!! Ok, ok I know that nobody wants it but this blog is all about me.

Got home after my long run this morning and immediately started researching p.f. Need to ice, stretch, strengthen, and rest. One website recommended a cold soda can and rolling it around with your foot and that actually works. I had been using a tennis ball to do the same thing, the coke can just adds the icing element. No walking barefoot (but I love my saltillo tile floors!), no flip-flops, no speed-work, and no hills. Actually I guess I should lay off running for a couple of weeks but that's NOT going to happen, thppppt!

Ok, weekly recap

Tues. 5.25 miles in 50:50 at Lebanon outlet mall (2.49 with Elsie, then bathroom break for me)

Wed. 4 miles in 40:37 with Elsie at Lebanon outlet mall again (laid over, gotta love the auto plants and suppliers)

Thurs. Tempo run at Winfield, TX 5.21 miles in 49:34
mile 1 10:08 (warm-up)
mile 2 9:32 (into the wind and uphill)
mile 3 9:00
mile 4 8:52
mile 5 9:50
mile 5-5.21 2:10

Friday rest (work)

Saturday Beyond Boundaries Boot Scootin' 5k--Garmin is showing 3.2 miles in 25:12, forgot to shut off right away. Small race-I was 7th overall (male and female).

Sunday 11.96 miles in 1:56:20

13 April 2009

CCC 10k

Elsie wondering why we're being so mean and not letting her run

Watching the runners go by

Happy race, got my mojo back!

12 April 2009

Outtakes and bumpers!

My attempts at trying to take Elsie's picture in the bluebonnets. I was having a hard time trying to get her to stay still!
James was holding a bluebonnet sprig in the air to try and get her attention.
Indy, this one's for you, although I'm sure you've already looked it up by now! The ICC bumpers that we have now (on trailers newer than 1998) are supposed to keep people that rearend a big truck attached to their heads. Most docks also have these locking mechanisms that hook to the bumper to keep the truck in place at least long enough for the forklift driver to get out if some idiot decides to pull out while being loaded or unloaded. If you see one of these bent in the middle it's a sure bet that the driver didn't double check to make sure the lock actually disengaged before moving or rolled back into the dock causing it to re-lock.
They're called ICC bumpers because the Interstate Commerce Commission was the regulatory board for trucking and rail in the U.S. (initially rail, ICC was est. in 1887, dissolved in 1995) that required bumpers on the big trucks in 1953. What blows my mind is that it took until 1991 before any action was taken to improve the bumpers in order to prevent so many of the fatalities. Prior to that it was pretty much guaranteed that anybody who rear-ended a truck was going to be decapitated.
This is one instance where I think additional safety measures was actually warranted. There is the problem of occasionally finding a road obstacle (usually railroad tracks) that will cause the bumper to drag or hang up but I think a good portion of those have been fixed (I hope, lol) or marked as no truck.

I love my local bike shop

Ok, had a very frustrating week so decided to go with a positive title :-). But I really do love my local bicycle shop! First off, the owner (who James and I are lucky enough to consider a good friend now) allowed me to keep my new road bike at home even though I still owed him approx. 1/2.
2) he only charged me their cost, not msrp
3) he GAVE us the new store jerseys (cost him $50 each)
4) I couldn't make up my mind which trainer to buy so he allowed me to take both of them home to decide
5) He wouldn't let me pay for a seat I'm trying out until I find out if it's going to work for me
6) He ordered the pink Speedplay lightactions as a surprise for me and was just going to swap for the black ones--however, I paid for them and kept the black ones to put on my Marin since it's taking up permanent residence on the trainer

Now isn't that just a great list! Now, I realize that James and I spend quite a bit of money there but we always get a discount so it's not like he's making a living off of us and when James and I told him we wanted to pay for the jerseys I was told that he's looking at it as advertising (especially from me since I do so many cycling events).

One thing I've noticed with my new Jamis Xenith Femme is that I'm getting treated more seriously by "real" cyclists. It's making me smile thinking about it even now, lol. Shoot, I would've thought that it'd more impressive riding a century on an entry-level road bike rather than the mid-range one I've got now! Although, I must admit that it's kinda cool getting the respect, ;-).

Now for a quick recap on the frustrating week

-Was snowed on Sunday night and Monday morning (was just flurries but it's APRIL, for crying out loud)

-blew a tire on Hwy 19 going south Wed. morning (I skipped my run trying to hurry down for nothing). On the bright side road rescue took my suggestion on a shop and wasn't smart-assed for once.

-the trailer I was picking up Wed. night had issues (turn signal out from corroded wiring, a very bald and flat tire, and the landing gear crank came fell apart in my hand, grrr). Shop closes at 8 pm and doesn't reopen until 8 am, it was 2200 when I was trying to drop and hook.

-Thurs. morning found a bolt and a nail in a drive tire (losing air around the bolt)

-New shop policy, mechanics can't work on the tractor and trailer at the same time. Never mind that even the mechanic that worked on my stuff would've preferred to do it that way. Had to get the trailer worked on, pull out and drop, then get back in line. What would've only taken an additional 15 minutes took 4+hours. Oh yeah, pulled into the exact same bay that I was originally in.

-While waiting on me to get out of the shop James was asked to do local work. Wouldn't have been so bad but it was going to the Union Pacific rail yard and when he got there with the first load was informed that no billing had been received so he had to wait for an hour outside the gate until that was completed. You would think that when he went back for the 2nd trailer that the billing would've been processed for it as well, but nope, had to wait again. So that put us even further behind because I waited around for him another 2 hours after I was done with my repair work.

-I frustrated a fuel desk cashier at the Love's Encinal Thursday evening when I refused to leave my paperwork with her to be trans-flo'ed while I took my shower so had to deal with her snarkiness. After I told her that "No, I prefer to wait" she decided that she was going to make me wait as long as possible before she scanned the sheets. Just because she's that blase about her own personal info doesn't mean that I am about mine.

-Friday on the I35 corridor is bad enough, but add in Easter and it was a mess. Bumper to bumper traffic from San Antonio to Waco then we were on backroads, thank goodness.

Now, I realize that the week could've been much worse but I really wanted to get in for a special event Friday and it seemed like fate was working against me being there.

Good news-
-We finished up the flower bed around the mailbox yesterday-I think the neighbor across from us backed into our whiskey barrel last month. It's now surrounded by pavestones 3 high so if they run over it it's going to hurt their suv, HA.

-State refund arrived so Buffy (the new road bike) is ALL mine

-the pink lightactions match perfectly, lol (James had been teasing me all week that they would clash

-James is making me cassoulet!

06 April 2009

Double Header

I was starting to think that I'd lost what little marbles I had left, this weekend I KNOW that they're gone, LOL....

This weekend was the one-two punch of back-to-back races in the AR Grand Prix, the Capital City 10k and the Hogeye Half-Marathon. I'm not sure what twisted person decided this was a good idea but from what I understand it's been this way for so long it's now a tradition. Yes, I know I didn't have to race both but as Terry says about her job, I do love me a challenge :-).

First off was the 10k Saturday. I absolutely loved this race!!!!!! It's nearly completely flat and it's out aways from the city, practically in the boondocks. I was disappointed that Brenda and Lisa weren't going to make it but was very happy to see Cindy. I thought that I would be able to run with her for a while before she left me but to my surprise I was actually feeling great so we ran together for practically the entire race. Although she did kind of fib to me about going out easy the first mile, LOL!

At the 5k point we were faster than our 5k time in last week's Spring Fling 5k so was happy about that and I was still feeling strong. It wasn't near as cold and we didn't have that hellacious wind, thank goodness. One highlight of the course was when we were running by a horse farm and we had several horses run up to check us out--beautiful. At around mile 5.5 we had another woman pass us and I couldn't stand it any longer, I felt great and started picking up the pace. I even caught and passed a guy (at the very last minute) that had been joking with Cindy and I about age. Never did catch the woman that passed us, she must have been feeling good too :-).

Ended up with a new 10k pr by one minute, 3 seconds (51:50) and was 21st female out of 173, 117/349 overall, and 2/28 in my age group. It felt sooooo good to have a race that I felt good running, it's been since October that I had one where I was really happy about my finish and didn't feel miserable afterwards.

Oh, cute story--We took Elsie and of course she was going nuts because I had my running gear on and she wanted to run too. After the race, a new acquaintance asked if she could take Elsie with her while she ran to her car and we were joking around about how long it would take Elsie to realize that neither James or I were with them and she put on the brakes. Well, Elsie made it much further than we thought and it was hilarious watching them. Wish I had video of it to share!

Saturday afternoon I packed up and roadtripped with Bailey, Jackie, and Sean up to Fayetteville for the Hogeye 1/2 Marathon. Very disappointed with the women's tech shirts, the small was more like an extra-small or xx-small so ended up not taking one home. They were giving us the option to address a large manila envelop and would send us the next size up if enough were available. Except for Bailey, the woman didn't tell her about that option and was just joking about all the women looking like they would be in a wet t-shirt contest. Very, very, very weird!

Bailey had booked the room and it was extremely nice, esp. for the price. We even had a full kitchen and would've brought our own food to cook if we'd known. The only thing I didn't like was the smoke detector. It was the style that blinked a blue light every so often and I couldn't sleep well because of it, blech. From about 12:30 on I think I was waking up every hour and found out the next morning that Jackie did the exact same thing. Oh, and we had a major thunderstorm roll through between 0200-0230. That kind of had me worried too.

Sunday morning was much colder than the previous day, it went from the low 70s on Sat. down to 48F, brrr. Strong winds were also predicted, yuck. Eugene and I had talked the previous day about him pacing me to a 2 hour finish and I was surprised that he was still willing to do it today. He's quite a bit faster than me so I knew it would be hard for him to go that slow.

On the uphills I would slow down but speed up to catch him on the downhills. Worked well until mile 10, then I kind of imploded and had to start walking up some of the inclines. Prior to that the only time I walked was through the water stations--have a hard time drinking out of a cup and jogging without it going up my nose or all over my shirt.

Garmin stats
Mile 1-11:01, slow because of the hills and crowds
Mile 2-8:29
Mile 3-8:19
Mile 4-8:48
Mile 5-8:45
Mile 6-8:47
Mile 7-8:52
Mile 8-8:44
Mile 9-9:25 (back in the hills and starting to slow)
Mile 10-9:10
Mile 11-12:51 (oops, had to walk)
Mile 12-8:25 (walked some and stomach cramps)
Mile 13,13.1-10:26 (walked some more)

I did manage to push hard the last few feet but it was absolutely, completely miserable. I have no desire whatsoever to see any finish line photos or even any in the last few miles. I was on the verge of tears and feeling horrible. My stomach started cramping around mile 12 and I thought I was going to have to find a port-a-potty, yuck. My mistake was not taking the gel that I'd been carrying in my pocket the entire race at around 1 hour in and not taking enough calories in for breakfast. Until we hit mile 10, I was actually ahead of what I needed to be to finish in 2 hours or just under.

Now the previous paragraph may have you thinking that I was unhappy with my finish time and the race, but it's the opposite. I'm absolutely thrilled!! My finish time was 2:01:36 and that's gun time, they didn't have chip timing for this race. That's a new 1/2 marathon p.r. on a course that's extremely difficult, I had been warned that's it hard to p.r. here but I did it thanks to Eugene. It was hard for him to go that slow and be passed by people he can pass with no problem but he stuck with me even though I told him to go on several times. I felt bad about slowing him down, esp. in the last 5k.

Final results on the 1/2
Female 44/230
Age group 3/25
Overall 183/483

Not a bad weekend!! 2 personal records on back to back races. I'm sore but happy right now. Not bad for a truck driver, eh? Did I do that right Kelownagurl?

One quick thing, I've been trying to lose a few pounds and have finally dropped the 3 from the holidays. Well today I almost had a wardrobe malfunction because the running skirt I wore is now a little loose. Until I started sweating enough for the fabric to stick to me the skirt kept sliding down my hips and I almost flashed my butt at the people behind me for the first mile. Trying to hold your skirt up and run at the same time is no easy task, LOL!