>Bootcamp must go on…

>Thurs, March 31
5:30am – 6:30am – Bootcamp class

Well, today sucked. Not because of the workout, but because I just felt like shit today after being at the vet last night (see my blog post from yesterday). My eyes were all swollen when I looked in the mirror at 5am, but I thought I might feel better if I got a workout in and stuck to my schedule. I confessed to Troy and my class that I missed on Tuesday because of my hurting calves and that I was looking to do something else for cross training, however, since I loved bootcamp and was committed to it that I would continue, but just modify it so I don’t do running or other jumping stuff. I did that today and it worked pretty well. We did lots of abs and arms so I felt like I got a good workout in still.

I maintained my composure and kept my mind off of Homer during the workout, but almost as soon as I got in the car the waterworks started again. That is the strange thing about grief – it hits at random times. One of the things that gets me the most is how much this is affecting Mike (again, see my blog post from last night that he wrote). So, Mike and I decided to take personal days today. We are giving ourselves permission to be sad and go through this grief process together. Breathe in. Breathe out.

>Difficult Decisions

My husband wrote this tonight after we put our dog down…it is beautiful and I could not have said it better…he said I could post it to my blog as well the note on his facebook page…
yet another way to look at “life after losing”, I guess…

Good for nothing bag of bones…He will be missed!


As if decisions are not difficult enough on a daily basis today I had to make the ultimate decision to put my dog Homer down. I will tell you a little bit about Homer or ‘Homo’ as Zachary used to call him when he couldn’t say his r’s. We found Homer in 2004 just around Christmas time, what a pistol he was, a little rough around the edges. Somehow he won us over and we adopted him. After a bit of time with his new family he settled in pretty well. I don’t think I could have asked for a better mutt. I would not change a thing about him.


There are a lot of good memories that we have – getting chased by the geese around the pond, stealing a loaf of bread and stashing it under the bed, and getting into Grandma’s bag of Life-Savers and hiding them around the house. He was a loyal employee of mine and had been comming to work with me for the past three years. Always on time, even early on most days. His favorite time of day at work was lunch in the summertime, eating on the deck and rolling in the grass soaking up the sunshine.

Fast forward to the present…

Homer was getting older, we never knew his exact age. The vet seemed to think he was older maybe 12 years. Thinking back on the past year I can now see the subtle changes that were happening. He stopped standing up at the edge of my bed to wake us up in the morning, panting a lot due to pain from arthritis along with some bladder issues. Well the time arrived, I knew it would sometime. What a difficult process trying to determine whats best for him no matter how it makes you feel.

The moment…

I was with Homer when he was given the injection. We were nose to nose, I had his head in my hands, and he was looking straight into my eyes. As corny as it may sound I think he knew what was going on. He was very calm and stared at me without even as much as a look at anyone else in the room. He had a look in his eyess that was so trusting – “I understand, I forgive you, I love you, I will be alright now”. Then he was at peace. I stayed with him for a while afterward to reflect on his life with us. It was an experience that I will never forget.

Coming Home…

Afterward we drove around for a bit as none of us wanted to go right home. We went and had a quiet dinner. Coming home was tough, I didn’t think it would hit me so hard. Everywhere you looked there was Homer, the dog dish, the living room doors closed, the smudge marks on the doors from his nose. Hell even pulling into the garage and seeing the towel I used to wipe his paws after rainy day walks. Tomorrow will be a tough day at work as there will not be four paws under my desk.

The Guilt…

No matter how much you know that it is the right thing to do the guilt is horrible. Did I do enough? Did I fail him in some way? Should I have waited? I did the right thing. Any other choice would have been for my benefit and not his. This was not my first dog but it was the first time I had ever had to do this.

Would I do it again? Is it worth the heartache? YES! I would do it again. We are Dog People. It will be tough as the next doggie has some pretty big paws to fill!

Homer D. Ramsey
?? – 3/30/2010
Not too bright but loved by all!

>Barking calves!

>Wed, March 30
5:30am – Ran 50 minutes on the indoor track at Life Center
Distance – 4.75 miles; Pace – 10’32”

Not gonna lie, my calves hurt the entire run again this morning. So much for yoga being the miracle cure! I know, I know, it has only been one session! It was motivational to see Nicole there this morning – the woman I met who is also running the 1/2 in May. Having her there helped me push myself around that track to get it done. I noticed after about 25 minutes in I felt better, but it was tough getting started. Okay, today at lunch I VOW to look up some good exercises for calves. I ran into Troy and only 1 woman showed up for Bootcamp yesteday…ugh, the guilt! I told him I didn’t come because I had fallen and was sore. That is just the partial truth, but I didn’t have lots of time to go into it. I did say I would be there tomorrow, so I will – and may just modify some of the exercises.

I have to hand it to the peeps who train for full marathons…if this is work, I cannot imagine their training programs!! Whew!

>Cross-Train Change-Up

>Tues,March 29
Yoga at JCU – lunchtime

So I decided to take some advice and change up my cross-training day workout today. I did not go to boot camp, but decided on yoga instead at lunch. It was the first time I had ever done a real yoga class and I enjoyed it. It was called “Power Yoga” and it wasn’t really what I expected. I learned a lot of cool poses, so that was cool, but what I was surprised by was the music that played during it. It was like some Madonna and other upbeat stuff for most of the class and I guess I was expecting calm, and serene music – similar to what plays when you are getting a massage. It kind of annoyed me actually because it was not really relaxing at all, but work! However, I really did enjoy the stretches and how good they felt. For the rest of the day my body felt really loose and relaxed. Good. While I felt really good about doing it and I want to keep yoga in my routine during the week, I also felt like it really was not a good substitute for cross-training. I mean I did not sweat really at all and that is saying a lot for me (the dude in front of me, however was soaked!!).

I think what I will do is keep doing bootcamp, but just modify it if needed (not too much legs or jumping). All of the arms and other strength training is really good. But yoga is awesome. I hope to keep doing it twice a week at lunch. I didn’t really get the peaceful, mediation feel from it today (maybe because of the music or the instructor’s style, but the stretching definitely rocks!

>Runners with Horns??

>Mon, March 28 – Beginning week 8
9:30am – ran 40 minutes on the indoor track at Life Center
Distance: 3.87 miles; Pace: 10’23”

I was able to go to the gym a bit later today bit today as I had the morning off. So it is not surprising that there was quite a different crowd at the gym today at 9:30am than I normally see at 5:30am! There were quite a few walkers, and a lot of traffic in between group exercise classes to deal with.

Now, I know I have commented on walkers before…walkers with coffee, walkers on cell phones, but today I want to address the oblivious walker. And again, my disclaimer holds true…I think runners and walkers can co-exist as long as we observe some basic rules. For example, when a runner is coming up behind you, make sure to make some room for he/she to pass. This is usually not a problem, but today it really was! There were a number of twosomes walking (and talking) together and they were completely oblivious to the fact that I was coming up behind them. I guess the fact that I had passed them about 15 other times didn’t register. I actually had to “man-handle” one older gentleman in order to basically stop myself from running into him by steadying myself with my hands on his shoulders. Another couple never quite got it and I had to just guess which side to pass on each time around. Further there were a number of ladies from the group exercise class who just stood in the middle of the track on their way to get hand weights or other equipment. They had absolutely no idea (or acted that way) that I was coming apparently. I mean am I that stealthy of a runner that I can sneak up on people without them knowing?? It’s not even like these people are even wearing iPods. I mean do I have to buy a horn to wear and honk as I’m coming up on unsuspecting lifecenter goers? Maybe a bell like on a bicycle? Oh I know, maybe I should attach a whistle to my headband that makes a noise similar to those that warn deer of approaching traffic to avoid collisions. I mean, what is it going to take?! I’ve got it! Maybe I should just call or text the walkers on their phones to let them know I’m coming up behind them! Today I actually saw a “lifter” talking on the phone while lifting, simultaneously. Seriously? I have a message for him…”dude, leave ur phone in ur lockr”!!

>The Magic of H2O!

>Saturday, March 26
Ran 8 miles at the indoor track at LifeCenter
Time: 1:28:11; Pace: 11’01″/mile

Yes, I did it! And my legs were not dying! I think I figured out a big part of my problem. I deliberately made an effort to hydrate more all day yesterday and that seemed to have made a big difference. I mean, I’m sore, but not sore like before. After about 4 miles in I started to feel really good. And actually the last two miles were actually fun! The song “Centerfold” by the J. Geils Band came on during the last two miles and that is my jam. I was kinda rockin’ it out. Singing out loud, clapping, oh yeah, all of that madness. No one even seemed to notice or look at me funny (unless they were laughing behind my back). And even if they were I didn’t care because I felt on top of the world at that moment. Physically I felt great and mentally I felt so good about breaking another distance barrier. So, excuse me, I think I’m gonna go grab a drink of water!

>Bosu Bummer

>Thurs, March 24
6:30pm – 7:30pm, Bosu class, in theory

So because of spring break in Hudson this week, my Bootcamp class for this morning was cancelled. So, my plan for cross training for today was the evening Bosu class that I used to go to all the time. However, I got there tonight and discovered that the class was no longer happening…like ever. The teacher moved to Columbus with her husband and family! Ugh! In the Bosu time slot there was a step class so I decided to stay for it. It was okay. I mostly made it low impact to take care of my legs, but I still felt like it was an okay workout. It was fun and different…and not running. So that’s a win!!

>From Autopilot to Awareness

>Okay, a quiz for you…

1. Have you ever eaten a meal or snack while watching tv?
2. Have you ever eaten a meal or snack while reading a book or magazine?
3. Have you ever eaten a meal or snack while driving in the car?
4. Have you ever eaten a meal or snack while on the computer?

If you answered “yes” to one or more of these questions (I would venture to guess it would be all of us!) this blog entry is especially for you!

I have recently finished reading the book “Women, God and Food: An Unexpected Path to Almost Everything” by Geneen Roth, recommended to me by a friend and have really learned a lot from it. I’m still processing much of the book as there is a lot there, but the one thing I have decided to put into practice in my life now is a couple of her eating guidelines.

She includes 7 eating guidelines in the book, but the ones that intrigued me the most focus on eliminating distractions while you eat. She specifically addresses eating in the car (gulp), while reading (ugh), or watching tv (uh-oh). I have had a habit for many months now to eat my breakfast in the car on the way to work and eating my lunch while perusing facebook or something else on the computer at my desk. Let’s not even talk about how my “snackie” button is pushed simultaneously with the television remote. Now, usually I make pretty smart and healthy choices for these meals that fit into the WW points system and all, but I can’t say that I really enjoy them and am ever fully present while eating and driving or eating while on the computer or watching tv. Nor can I say definitely that I am really aware of my hunger level during those times. I just eat until the food is gone. Hmm…

Today I decided to make the change and see what happens. I took 10 minutes to heat up my oatmeal and blueberries and eat them at the kitchen table this morning. Nice. I did not even read the newspaper that was tempting me on the table. Not only did I relax, but I actually had a conversation with my son to boot. To underscore how much of a habit it has become for me to eat b-fast on the run, Zach actually said to me, “Mommy, are you staying home today?”. Seeing me eating breakfast at the table was so out of the ordinary for him that it made him stop to think. Wow. Message sent.

Then today for lunch I decided to just listen to music on my computer while eating my lunch. I actually took about 20 minutes to enjoy my turkey samich with blue cheese rather than shove it in while playing scrabble. Now, yes, the food I consumed was the same, but I felt different about my lunch. I was aware of the taste, more aware of my hunger level and plus I enjoyed it more.

I can already foresee that my greatest challenge for this will be the watching tv part. But, I can re-learn a new habit, right? I think what I’m’ going to try is if I want a snack in the evening I will have to eat it at the kitchen table. This could be interesting. Wish me luck! I challenge you to become more aware in your eating experiences! Food is good – we should enjoy it!

>Another reason to stock up on frozen veggies…

>Wed, March 23
7:45pm – Ran 45 minutes at the indoor track at Life Center
Distance: 4.17; Pace: 10’49”

After sleeping in this morning I’m happy to say that I finally did get my run in tonight. The timing works okay because my Bootcamp class tomorrow is cancelled so I’m planning to go to Bosu class tomorrow night anyway so that will work out.

My legs were achy again tonight, but I pushed through. I came home and iced them with bags of frozen vegetables for awhile and that helped a bit. I’ve been having some challenging food issues lately so I’m going to be a little more deliberate about making sure I get enough water in and I am going to track carefully 12 hours before and 12 hours after my long run on Saturday in order to diagnose this problem once and for all. I just want to enjoy running again and right now it is just a chore to check off my list.