Friday, June 12, 2009

Anyone still out there??

Hey everyone! I'm back... at least for today! After my big promise months ago to get better about blogging on a more regular basis, I pretty much abandoned my blog :( I initially blamed the new job, but now that I'm more settled in, have my own office, and have the time to update, I still don't have that urge to write. BUT, the time has come to get on here again and at least write SOMETHING :)

Here are some general updates on what's been happening in my life over the past few months...

Work: I LOVE my new(ish) job :) The people I work with are great, and I really enjoy what I do. We're still building our company, and just moved into our own office space a little over a month ago. We've accomplished a lot, but there's still always more work to be done!!

Running: At the time of my last post I had just finished a half marathon in SF. I'm a little sad that I never did my post-run recap, but since it has now been months since the race, it's probably not going to happen. Suffice it to say that my recent experience was not too much different than the previous two times I've done that race. It went well, the weather was gorgeous, the Great Highway sucked, and I was happy to have it over with :D

Despite my good intentions, I ended up taking a long running break after the race. I went out and ran a handful of times, but never more than 3 miles or so. My break is now officially over and training has begun again! The Chicago marathon is just a few months away, and our training calender started on June 6. Claudia, Sandra and I (along with a fellow TNTer Leslie who isn't training for the marathon, but just wanted to come join us) met up at Lake Merritt on Saturday morning for our first (!!) training run. We're following a more advanced training calender which had us starting at 6 miles! Eeeek! 

Let me just say that 1) I hate running in circles, 2) I hate running through geese, ducks, and on duck poop, 3) I like the new paved trail around part of the Lake and 4) 6 miles was tough! Claudia and I stuck together for both laps around the Lake, but we did have to take a couple of walk breaks. Despite those breaks, I'm still very proud of us. When you haven't been training, 6 miles is not a short easy run and we did it. I felt really good afterwards... maybe that was due to the strawberry mimosa we had at breakfast :D

Life: The rest of my life has been full of all the normal things... time spent with friends and family. My best childhood friend got married and her wedding in Nevada City was a lot of fun. There have been BBQ's, trips home to YC to see my family, a trip by my parents FROM YC to see me, a black tie event to celebrate LLC's Man/Woman of the Year. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Time of Change

This is time of change, not only for the country with the inauguration of a new President (WOO HOO!!), but also a personal time of change... I started a new job!! I enjoyed working at my previous job for almost 8 years, but the right opportunity opened up (thanks to Claudia :D) for me and I had to take it! It's going to entail learning a lot of new information, but I'm excited to take on a new challenge!

I don't have much to update on the running front, which is partly why I've been so bad about updating. I caught a little cold last week and decided that with a new job starting, and a 10 mile run coming up, I'd take the week off of running. Saturday I was very nervous about doing the 10 mile run since I still was still congested and wasn't sure how that would effect my breathing. We started off at Pt. Isabel and it was a gorgeous day for a run. It was a little chilly when we first got there and that started up a bunch of coughing. Once we got started though, it got a little better. We ran north along the trail up to Richmond and then back to Pt. Isabel, which was 7 miles. I took a little break there to catch my breath and check on one of my mentees who was a little behind me.

I was completely pooped, but really wanted to finish 10 miles, which meant heading south along the trail, which parallels the freeway for part of the way, for another mile and a half and then back. On the way out all I could think about was how I just wanted to be done already! I made it to the mile and a half mark and then took a little walk break once I turned around. It was getting harder for me to catch my breath so I walked a quarter mile, and then ran a quarter mile on and off all the way back.

I was so happy to be finished with that run! I didn't even look at my watch when I finished... I didn't even care how long it had taken me, just that I finished it! Even though the last mile and a half was tough, it was a pretty good 10 miler! No aches and pains, and I wasn't too sore afterwards. That might have been due to the restoring Pupusas I had for lunch at a Salvadorian place in Berkeley with Claudia and Jeanette afterwards :D My throat was NOT happy with all the coughing, the run and all the chit chatting afterwards... later that night my voice was pretty much gone. It's mostly recovered now and I only sounded a little bit manly on my first day at the new job :)

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Happy 2009!

Well, it looks like I've already broken my New Year's non-resolution to update my blog more! I had a very fun New Year's Eve with Claudia and Rocky-- we had a yummy crab dinner with lots of wine and then stayed up till 2:00am watching all the silly New Years stuff on TV. Then next morning Rocky cooked us up some omelets and then I went home to spend the rest of the day being a lazy bum :D 

This last weekend we had a Coached Run at Heather Farms in Walnut Creek. Although it was frigid again, once we got out there we warmed up fairly quickly. I knocked out 8 miles and felt really good the whole time! Since I run at Heather Farms every week, it was nice to run the trail in a different direction and get a change of scenery (although we run there in the dark during the week so it's not like I can see anything anyway!). The most interesting part of the run was that I got pooped on by a bird! I think in some countries that means I'll have good luck! After the run I joined some of my teammates at a diner nearby for breakfast. Our Arizona runners (all three of them) will be doing the half marathon in just two weeks so that was our unofficial send off for them!

On Sunday Claudia, Rocky and I had a day of culture in San Francisco :) We drove over early and went to the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park. They had a lot of interesting things, but a lot of weird art too. I like art that looks pretty, not something that looks like a 5 year old could have done it :) After the de Young, we went next door to the Japanese Gardens, which I haven't been to since I was a Freshman in college. It's so pretty there, but I had remembered it being bigger than it was. We walked around a little and then headed off to our next cultural destination, the Legion of Honor.

I had only seen the Legion of Honor from the outside and didn't really know what kind of museum it was and I was pleasantly surprised. I liked it a lot better than the de Young. We walked all through the building, but didn't see the Leonardo di Vinci exhibit because they charged extra for that. By that time we were all getting hungry so we headed to a different part of the city to grab a bite to eat. It ended up being a LONG day in the city, but it was fun to kind of play tourist and explore some new places!

Last night instead of our Buddy Run we had a hill workout. We have Cause for Celebration tomorrow night and after the two holidays, that would have meant 3 missed track workouts for the team. They decided to cancel our usual Buddy Runs and have "track" instead. We met up again at Dougherty Valley High School and did the same set of hills we did a few weeks ago. I think it was a little easier this time than last time! I guess the hill workouts are working! I have to say I don't hate them as much as I used to! 

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Playing blog catch up

My mom told me to just write a sentence or two about everything that's happened since the last time I posted. That's probably the best idea, but I don't think I'm capable of boiling each thing down to even two sentences so this will probably be a long post :) I promise I'll be better about blogging from now on... I won't make it my New Year's Resolution since that will doom it to certain failure but I'll do my best to update more :D

First things first... I'M OLD(ER)!! WAHH! I started out the birthday celebration with dinner on my actual birthday with Claudia and Jeanette. Although I had a party planned for the next Saturday, I couldn't just sit home and do nothing on my actual birthday so we did a little mellow celebrating. We had a yummy dinner at OI-C Bowl in WC and then headed across the street to 1515 for drinks and dessert. Lindsay was able to meet up with us there for a little bit. THANK YOU girls for making my real birthday a very enjoyable one!!!

The 2nd birthday celebration was on Saturday... I invited some friends over for dinner, drinks and some hanging out. Having a winter birthday means you don't have as many options when it comes to celebrating, especially because I don't really feel like fighting all the holiday crowds to go out to dinner. I cooked up some chili and a potato dish from The Pioneer Woman and Claudia brought me a super yummy cake with berries and pomegranate seeds on top! At the beginning part of the evening, I felt like I was at a high school dance... all the boys were in one room and the girls where in another. Once the food came out there was a little more mingling going on! Of course the evening ended with a couple rounds of my favorite new board game, Rigamarole!! THANK YOU to everyone who came over... I had a fantastic time celebrating with all of you!!

After all the birthday celebrating, it was time for Christmas! I went home to my parent's on Tuesday, picking up my brother at the airport in Sacramento on the way. It was a very relaxing week and weekend with the family... we visited some family and friends, did the whole Xmas thing, went to a couple of movies, ate a lot, and even had a party! Although I missed going to Maui like we have the past few years, it was nice to have a "cold" Xmas, and it definitely made it easier to get back into post-vacation mode when I came back to WC.

Pre-Christmas the running was going very well. We got in some hill training during our "track" workouts and ran a very hilly, but very gorgeous, 7 miles on the 19th. I usually hate hills and don't do very well on them but I've been very proud of myself... I haven't walked any of our hills during track, and only walked a couple of the really big hills during our Coached Run. I think it helped that our Coached Run was somewhere that I've never run before... usually our hilly run is a Lake Chabot, which I'm not a big fan of, but this time we ran at Redwood Regional Park up in the Oakland Hills. Although the first half of the run was almost entirely uphill (switching between mild inclines and steep sections), the gorgeous scenery distracted us, and we got to enjoy a very fast downhill run back!

Running up one of the hills during our hill workout.

The hardy Hill crew

Starting the Redwood Park run... no big hills yet but plenty of frost on the ground!

Post-Christmas the running has been non-existent! I brought my running stuff home with my but never actually went for a run. Tonight will be the first time I've run in over a week and then of course we don't have track this week because it's New Year's Day... but at least it will get me out there doing something, and I can pick back up with our regular schedule on Saturday!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Neglectful Blogger

My poor blog has been very neglected lately :( I have so much to post about-- a birthday, running and Christmas-- that every time I think about it I get overwhelmed! I swear that this week I will write a big update, or maybe spread it out over a few days. Needless to say, I will stop neglecting my poor blog! I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Yep, that's right... it has snowed in the East Bay! Our latest frigid weather has brought us one nice thing... snow on the top of Mt. Diablo! And not just a light dusting that quickly melted... it dumped 6 inches and today I can still see it up there!

Last night Coach Gary led us on a Holiday Buddy Run in that frigid weather! We have a bigger crowd than usual thanks to a couple of mentors who moved their run over to Heather Farms for the special occasion. :) We had a bunch of people show up in Santa hats and even garland! We started out along the trail as we usually do, but at Oak Grove, we turned right off the trail and then left onto Peachwillow. There are a bunch of houses in that neighborhood with very colorful lights and Christmas decorations, but there was one house in particular that we were going to. After turning on Peachwillow, we took a right onto Candleberry and saw the most insanely decorated house I've ever seen! Every single inch of this house, lawn and trees are covered with lights, decorations, ornaments, presents, and even a little train. For a few minutes, it was enough to make us forgot how cold we were! I can't imagine how long it took them to put that all up, and what their PG&E bill is for the month of December! We all oohed and ahhhed, took some pictures, and then made our way back to Heather Farms!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Dodging Duck Poop

Ahhh, Lake Merritt... a beautiful oasis surrounded by duck poop and crazy people near downtown Oakland. This was the location of our Mentor Led Run on Saturday. I don't hate running at Lake Merritt, but I don't particularly LOVE it either. I think my least favorite part is (aside from all the duck poop) that you're just running in a circle. I'd much rather do an out and back course because then you have a clear sense of your halfway point. When you're running in a circle, you (or rather I, since I don't know how everyone else feels) don't ever get that feeling of being halfway done.

The one thing I was very happy about was all the sun we had on Saturday! When I woke up I expected to hear raindrops but it was thankfully silent. Even with the sun I was all bundled up when we first started out on our run and halfway through I had warmed up enough to peel off most of my layers. I had intended to do about 5 miles, but after one loop around the lake I was done. I'm not sure why I didn't have a great run (I won't say it was an awful run, just not great)-- I ate pretty well and slept well the night before, although I didn't eat breakfast. Whoops :( There were quiet a few of the other runners out there who said they also didn't have a great run. It must have just been one of those days!