Stylish & Prepared Runners

10606012_527799289775_7836368402452995484_n

Photograph by MsKirian

So it’s official, our family is becoming a running family. We all have gotten official running shoes to break-in for our planned goals this Fall.

Larry and I have our goal to complete the Baltimore Running Festival half-marathon in October. Now my 9 year old is inspired by us and she’s joined her schools Girl’s On The Run Team and they will Run in November. We are all feeling pretty stylish with our selection/style/color and fit of our shoes, nothing can stop us now.

Gotta love my matching nail polish too 😉

P.s. Our 8 mile run last weekend was awesome! No pains, no muscle cramps because we prepared for the unexpected. The last mile got hard but I pushed through it and considered it an awesome run.

Week 7: Checkers Fries On My Dashboard

WBR-blogpostimage

Larry and I taking the new shady trail for our 7 mile long run.

This Labor Day weekend was quite an experience and almost a scary one–as week 6 came to its end.

It was 8 a.m. Saturday morning and I had only eaten half a bagel not knowing I would start my long run until 12pm. I had obviously not realized how much time had passed till Larry and I got to our running site. As soon as I got out the car, I could feel my tummy saying “feed me, it’s lunch time”. I figured I could ignore it and simply just tough it out for 7 miles and make the best of it.

BOY was I wrong. I reached 2.25 of my 7 mile run and completely started to lose my energy. I quickly couldn’t focus, lost total motivation, and started to feel weird–a weird I couldn’t even explain. Larry and I decided to sit down on the grass and after 10 min. Larry suggested we just try the 7 mile long run for Sunday, as there was no need to push ourselves and risk injuries of any sort. So that’s what we did.

Sunday came and I made sure I got up 2 hours before our run, ate a hearty breakfast and we got to our running site on time. I was ready and so was Larry, we were so excited to do our run because we decided to take a new trail. As we began our run we were pretty satisfied that the new trail had a lot of decent shade and every now and then we got some good wind. But little by little we didn’t realize how hot it was getting. Now…normally men sweat more then woman and Larry is a sweaty guy outdoors. Since we started our trainings, we did notice that he would be drenched after runs, and so far he’s been okay given that our 6 mile run the weekend before was through rain. But this particular Sunday it was above 90 degree weather which was hotter then usual–as we have been having a cooler summer thus far–but we were both about to have an experience we won’t forget.

Just as we were about to approach 5.5 miles of our 7 mile practice long run–I was feeling great with plenty of fuel for the last 1.5 mile. We approached the tiny creek bridge we go over and there stood a older lady and 2 men. As we got closer, she smiled and said “Ugh It’s really hot out here right!”, Larry responded back with agreement. Shortly after getting off the bridge and about 5 minutes, Larry started to cramp up so we stopped to stretch and walk a little. While it seemed to help, Larry’s legs only got worse. We decided we cut through our trail for a early water break at our car as it was indeed feeling really hot at that point and Larry was totally drenched with sweat. He began to replenish his body with liquids–As I was telling him he’s loosing too much water and sodium, his entire body began cramping. He started not to feel so great, so he lay on the grass–just in case he passed out he wouldn’t hit his head on anything.  I massaged his cramps, poured water and massaged ice cubes over his head and neck and stood near for anything he needed as he drank as much fluids as he could. It was long before he could get up and get in the car, he really needed some salty fast-food since gatorade wasn’t helping but couldn’t leave him alone till the cramping passed. As I sat next to him on the grass comforting him, I discussed that even though this was not good, it was good we are experiencing his body’s reactions to the training and that he is obviously loosing way too much water/sodium during long runs. It hadn’t affected him before because we were doing short runs to build up to our long runs and the reason he didn’t have any effects at our 6 mile long run was because it was raining unlike this particular hot, humid and sunny day. All that said, we concluded that he MUST carry a water backpack or belt to replenish with water with all the sweating he does at every mile and definitely start hydrating before the run.

Finally, were able to leave in the car and I took him to Checkers. As nothing beats a sodium overload like their burgers and fries. While eating he caught two more cramps, one on his index finger that passed and the very last one that sent his Checkers fries flying across the dashboard and car floor–his bicep decided to give him one good last cramp. While it was a scary thing on my end at that given moment, thankfully we were able to laugh about it right after the cramp passed.

I have to say that this was a crazy scary episode not just for Larry but also myself.  However somehow it didn’t phase us and has only motivated us to be stronger runners. Because the next day we hit the store for running gear and discussed what our running plans would be even long after we do our half marathon in October.

So to this Saturday coming long run… “Hey!!! 8 mile long run! Yea You! BRING IT!”

Week 6: Half Marathon Training

It’s been about three weeks since I posted about my training progress for the half marathon I’m doing in October…how’s it going? Let’s just say I’m surviving.

Last weekends long run was a 6 mile run. While it was humid and drizzling on and off you think it would be great, but it was a bad run day for me. I had barely got to the second mile when I was almost ready to quit, but because my loved one was having such a good day running next me, and annoying me by saying things like… “You signed us up for a marathon”, “You don’t want to lose your $100 right?”, “you are the runner!”

I started to think am I really literally a Wanna-Be-Runner? I want to say 50% of me is… I thought about it so much I even thought of my own WannaBeRunner Apparel. What do you think?
WannaBeTshirt

When I feel like a runner, I feel strong and in a zone like I can keep going forever. But then there are the bad days where I just don’t have it in me. I have yet to feel excitement when driving to the site, for practice runs during the week let alone at long runs on Saturdays. But like I said once I start running, I am either all for it or not. However, I dare not quit even if it’s not in me, I do what I tell my beloved. It’s not about time, but completion…even if it means walking it to the end.

16 Things I Experienced As A Half–Sibling

blog halfsiblingSo I fell upon a post of “16 Things Only Half–Siblings Understand” on BuzzFeed by Leona Epstien. While I wish growing up this was actually the cookie cutter for me during childhood, it was the actual opposite. I totally think that if “ALL” half-siblings can learn to be this way like the post–it would totally be amazing 🙂 But lets face it, not everyone can get along in LIFE.

Before I begin here’s a little background. My mother married and had 4 children in her first marriage 2 boys 2 girls. Then years later she divorced and remarried and I was born. The youngest of her 4 children was my half-sister who’s about 20-something years older then I. All I know is that when my parents started dating she was a young teen along with her older brothers and sister. Naturally, at that age you can’t really understand why your parents would leave each other for another person. As children we believe in the traditional two parent household, but again LIFE just happens.

My “understanding” or should I say experience with having half-siblings was mostly with the youngest half-sister because she pretty much stayed home till she got married in her mid to late 30s. Which as Americanized as I am (came to U.S. when I was 5 now in my mid 30s)…well was a big no-no because in my view at 18 years of age or by early 20s you need to leave home and be an adult. But I am a Latina and therefore I understand my culture and why it’s is not seen as a bad thing. Well the next 16 things listed below are based on growing with my youngest half-sister and the drama that came with it. I know for a fact that she never liked that I was born because I took her attention and spotlight. Like with her other siblings, I am simply seen as the child from the “other man that took their mother from their father”.

So here are my responses. I think you will learn more then you expected about me today.

1. BuzzFeed: You may have a considerably large age gap

True. There is a considerably large age gap in mine. I am in my 30s and the youngest of my mothers first marriage is in her early 50s (or possibly just turned 50) and if I am correct the oldest iiiiiiiis early to mid 60s? Yea I don’t know, but I’m pretty sure she’s not 70 (my mother had me at 42–so she really thought she had menopause–surprise! She was prego!)

2. BuzzFeed: And if you have a large age difference, sometimes people make the uncomfortable mistake of thinking you’re a parent to your little half-sibs.

Not really. But what is uncomfortable is when my eldest half-sister son (my nephew) is older than I, lol. Very uncomfortable, when we hung out with his friends. He was in High School, and I barely just getting out of Middle School. Instead we opted-out to saying we were cousins.

3. BuzzFeed: You and your half-sib might look very different.

Toooootally, with the combination of my mother’s beauty and my dads’ greats looks. Yea I’m wrong, but it’s the truth.

4. BuzzFeed: You may even be different races.

Well….no we are all Latinos. But while they are all of lighter complexion and I darker–people tend to mistake me for Hindi. (I’ve learned to accept that comment)

5. BuzzFeed: But you love it when people think you two really DO look alike!

Excuse my bluntness….HELLs NO, thank Goodness that never happened or ever will.

6. BuzzFeed: And you always feel beyond excited when people ask out of the blue, “Are you two sisters/brothers?”

False, me: that’s my half-sister or half-brother. Other person: yea your brother/sister. Me: NOoo my half-sibling. Other person: But you have the same Mom. Me: Yea-so, still my half-sister or half-brother…I can keep going if you like.

7. BuzzFeed: You feel beyond annoyed when explaining your family structure, and someone says, “Oh, so you’re only half-sisters.”

False, I like to make it a point that the only relation between my half-siblings is due to our mother and that’s–that. So not annoyed, I need you to make sure you understand we are half-siblings–cause I’m total opposite of them.

8. BuzzFeed: And then people don’t understand why you WOULDN’T just always label your sib as your HALF-SIBLING.

No. Actually people don’t understand why I wouldn’t call them my sibling, since we have the same mother ‘anyway’.

9. BuzzFeed: There is no word for the parent you don’t share.

Actually I got plenty. For the other parent, “Wife Beater, Drunk, Lady’s Man, let me knock your teeth out”. I can only imagine what they name mine.

10. BuzzFeed: And if you grew up in a household with the parent of your half-sibling that you don’t share, you may still feel related to that parent.

HA! That’s funny are you Nutz!!

11. BuzzFeed: The first question people ask after finding out you’re half-siblings is, “Same mother or same father?” True.

12. BuzzFeed: Dealing with the fact that your half-sib might have a full-sibling. And like, does that make you something less?

Ugh no way! I know how to be real with people, be kind, giving. I am not full of greed and take advantage of who I can. I work hard to have my own. Reason to why I made sure I let all my half-siblings know back then that the day our mother passes away. I don’t want anything from her estate. They can have it all, because I will not waste my time in a feud among them as everything they touch, turns to water.

13. BuzzFeed: You may have a very large (and perhaps complicated) family.

Well I only acknowledge my side, and I like that fact that I am an only child from the second marriage.

14. BuzzFeed: Although one weird thing is that your half-sib has a whole other family outside of you.

Yes, true. But I live here, they live there–no need to get acquainted.

15. BuzzFeed: If you’re the younger half-sibling, you had a moment growing up when you grasped the concept of half vs. whole siblings. And it was kind of confusing.

Yes. But when I was of age to understand my father sat me down early enough to understand this concept because he saw the fore coming rejections of my half-siblings who would never see me as any level of sibling then “the other child”. Sad, but you can’t change ignorant people sometimes.

16. BuzzFeed: At the end of the day, you’ll always think of your half-sibling as just your sibling. Because they are nothing less..

Wrong, at the end of it all–they made my life growing up miserable whenever I was around them. I was treated like the ugly duckling that they could care less to acknowledge and hated for being better then their own children in my honors in school and getting a degree while most of them never bothered or simply quit, just like them. They never bothered to know what kind of person I was, then to just keep trying to put me down and judging me as a teen. Therefore, they remain as always half-siblings.

Now…

While the 3 eldest half-siblings (2 boys, 1 female) have never made an effort to change. The youngest half-sister who is now in her early 50’s and being that our mother passed away almost 3 years ago. She has made an effort to be better “sibling” per say. But honestly while I appreciate that she admitted last year to have been jealous that I took her shine as the youngest of the family growing up in the same house hold for so long and is sorry for her horrific physical fights and drama with me. I have to honestly say, it’s a bit too late for that. While I do however accept it, she has tainted me of who she and her sibling really are, to ever have any trust in the kind of people they are.

Also, while the only thing that ties us are the bloodlines of our mother running through us. I have to say that they truly missed out on the relationship they could have had with me. But that’s their loss, and I moved on. And I will still be cordial to her for trying because well I just don’t see why I should lower myself to treating her how she and her siblings treated me when growing up. I know better then that because, “I don’t care if you don’t like me, I love me”.

4 miles and 10 weeks to Race Day

il_340x270.397627313_j58m

This past weekend on Saturday, Larry and I survived our 4 mile long run. While Larry caught a cramp on his hamstring at the last mile…like in a movie he said “Go on without me, I’ll be okay–don’t let me hold your progress”. (Aww)

However, before I did. I made extra sure that was what he wanted and that he was okay (because during race day–there is no way I will leave my man behind, lol). He was able to push through it and finish the 4 miles a few minutes right behind me. I am happy that he is doing his best and like I tell him it’s about completion, not time. We sat on the grass stretching and reflecting on our run, he mentioned that he was almost in a zone before he caught the cramp. Excitedly, I mentioned that he was experiencing his first “Runner’s High” as I also started too get, into in my run.

Slowly he is developing into a runner, and even though he and I are facing challenges such as knee, hamstring, hip pains and pulls that sometimes Motrin doesn’t cut it for us. We manage or at least I manage to keep it positive and fun that we are getting ready to do a half marathon in 10 weeks as a couple, and that we will have a story to talk about in the “long run”–with a awesome medal to show for it. And because of that we stay motivated because we know we can do it, besides trying to just shed excess weight and losing our registration fee, lol.

Now forgive me but I wish I had pictures of our run at the lake, but somehow my mind isn’t programed to snap pictures. Like what kind of pictures should I be even taking? As runners how do you document your story?

Pizza vs 2 mile Run

Yesterday was suppose to be a normal easy run of 2 miles.

However, my normal commute from work to home of 1hr 15min turned out to be 2hrs. By the time Larry and I finally made it to the Lake our desire to run vanished. Instead Larry and I sat on a bench (where we usually stretch before running) and indulged in conversation about our day as we watched my daughter on the pier talking to kids and fisher men.

As we sat there I mentioned that it be nice to have a house by a lake, seriously–who can get tired of this view.

20140724_194133

Photo by MsKirian

Because we all rushed to get to the Lake thinking we would run, we didn’t even bother with dinner. So once the sun went down, it started to get chilly and we started to get hungry. Trying to be a good mom I said “Oh I’ll just be making fruit smoothies for dinner” but by the time we walked back to the car I said, “I’m really craving pizza”. Can you say, Fail!

20140729_205053

My daughter enjoying pizza with Larry and I on the trunk of the car.

So our 2 mile run evening actually ended up like this….

Bad I know…I have no idea what to even say about this.

Let the 13.1 Training Begin

I have officially registered for the 2014 Baltimore Half Marathon on October 18, 2014. I did my first half marathon back in October 2012…alone, who does that?

Well, my mother had passed away in September 2011 and given that she was a Olympic high diver in the 50s it was my way to tribute to her–that I have what it takes physically and mentally to conquer something not everyone can do. For me it was about completion and it took me 4:03:12.

This time around I have convinced my love Larry to join me on this journey. Given that I will have company this second time around makes it even much more exciting. We started training as of last week and he’s already getting nervous–given that we had a challenging first 3 mile long run at noon with the sun beaming on our heads. But having 1 half marathon under my belt, I am able to ease him that it will be ok as long as we train and eat right.

Let our training journey begin.