Sunday, September 30, 2007

Suddenly it hit me!

OK, I have been to like 496 weddings over the past year. I have bought $125 blenders for my friends, quesadilla makers they will NEVER use, and other assorted crap.

I finally caved today. I have been using my ghetto toaster from my college days and lately it has had a few problems:

  • The sensor is broken, meaning it does not know when it has reached the end of toasting and sometimes catches on fire if I forget about it. This sucks, by the way. Several times it has caught on fire and the place fills with smoke, alarms go off, etc. Yuck.
  • The bread only toasts on ONE side in each slot so I have to flip it
  • Sometimes it randomly sparks at me, for no reason

NO more!

I am buying myself a toaster. A pretty stainless steel one to match all of my other kitchen appliances, frig, oven, dishwasher, etc. Yeaaaaaaaaaah. That is what I am doing.

My kitchen is ready!

Let’s just hope I am still friends with all those bee-yotches when I get married. I have my eye on that candy apple red standing mixer at Bed Bath & Beyond.

Are we there yet?

8 miler went well this morning- I test ran a new sports bra and some new socks. Yes to the bra, NO to the socks!

I did a lot of thinking on this morning's run... I actually started to think about how I would feel on race day and some of the logistics of what to pack, what I would wear during the race (I have finally decided to wear my hydration belt with no bottles but with several pouches that hold my GU, little baggies of Accelerade, lip gloss, money, etc. You know... the important stuff. I struggled with whether or not I would wear the belt and just try to stuff things in my pockets and finally decided to just have everything I think I might need on my person. My past career as an All Star Girl Scout makes me think I should always be prepared. Plus, training with the Accelerade has really helped me so I decided I would do the same thing on race day.

What is everyone else doing? Just using the aid stations? Wearing your belt?

I would love to meet up with some of yall other Chicago'ers Sunday night for a celebratory drink. We have dinner reservations at 7:45 PM but I intend to hit the bar beforehand for a couple cocktails and might even make it out after dinner for a nightcap (or 12) depending on my physical state.

I am starting to get really pumped. I am just gonna soak up the entire weekend and enjoy myself in the process. Marathon weekend in Chicago is shaping up to be an awesome one and I intend to live it up!!!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Tales from the taperers...

Something about taper time has me going a little batty tonight! I am starting to second-guess myself... did I train enough? Am I ready? Will I totally struggle next week in Chicago? Do I have the perfect outfit?

OK, had to make myself laugh there. Truth be told, I am feeling good about Chicago. I have taken all pressure off of myself to finish in a certain time, or beat my boss, or any other expectations that might not make me enjoy my first marathon.

Yeah, I could have trained more. With the large amount of travel I do for my job, there are times training went to the way-side. There were weeks I only ran once (gasp!) and that was my long run. Oh well- life happens! I am hoping the brutal summer months of training will pay off in Chicago as I will not have to breathe through the muggy humidity and 90 degree heat. Yippppeee!!

Tomorrow morning is my last "long" run- 8 miles. I did a triple-take when I looked at and saw that it is supposed to be 59 degrees when I venture out to run tomorrow morning at 7:00 AM. 59 degrees WOOOOHOOOOO!!!! Where have you been, 50's? Even... 60's? Hell- where have the 70's been?

It is funny how much my view of running has changed over the last 16 months. I remember thinking my first half marathon was going to be impossible... how could I run 13.1 miles? I finished that race and thought I was going to die. I was sore for about two weeks and thought I could not push myself any further. Time went on... I got hooked on half marathons and did 3 more... each one getting easier. Now, I am running 13.1+ miles before work when I have to table my long runs. I rock!

Sadly, I realized my last race was back in the end of April- the Derby Festival Half. I have avoided letting myself cheat the long run by doing 5Ks and 10K races. Well, let's face it though... the racing season pretty much is nonexistent from May-September in Charleston. Too hot. Except if you are really crazy and train for a marathon. Make sense?

I love races. I really do. I love the excitement. I love looking around and thinking about how each of the people there made the same decision that I did to run the race. I think about how our journeys of preparation varied. I think about how we all run the same route and cross the same finish line- some in 2 hours like our Kenyan friends and some in 79 hours like me.

So, here we go. One more week. One more week of waiting, wondering, getting excited, etc.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Are my brother and I really related? And Go Dad!

My brother took 3rd overall this weekend at the Duathlon for Sight in Lexington, KY. I am so impressed... he really kicked butt... especially after he said his training was slack after Audrey (his daughter, my niece) was born about two months ago.

The duathlon was a 2 mile run, 18 mile bike, 4 mile run. He finished in 1:28:38. Here are splits-
Run 1- 12:13- 6:47 min/mile pace
Bike- 48:23- 22.3 mph pace
Run 2- 26:11- 6:33 min/mile pace

HE ROCKS!!! I am soooo proud!!!

And big KUDOS to my dad for biking a 50 miler on Saturday.... YAY!!!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Deep thoughts about the marathon.... CHICAGO SHOUT OUT!

Due to my crappy sickness today, I am left with PLENTY of time to sit here, peruse blogs, and think about the upcoming Chicago Marathon.

TWO WEEKS AWAY!!! I even got a preliminary glance at the weather report over at Shore Turtle's blog... 50 degrees?? Wa-a-a-a-a-what? I hope that sticks- but no rain, please.

There seem to be a HUGE number of people out in BlogLand running Chicago too! What fun... we all are crazy enough to 1) sign up 2) train through the summer months 3) run 26.2 miles with a gazillion other people. I love running!

Let's do a little CHICAGO MARATHON SHOUT OUT!! Drop me a quick comment if you are going to be rocking it on October 7th with the rest of us crazies! (And YES, Mendy... you are an honorary runner)


And as my favorite Baltimore crab bibs say, "Time to Get Cracking!"

Blackjack.... and I don't feel good :(

Let me start with my good news... I hit the gambling boat down in Savannah on Friday night and won $500!!! Yipppee!!

Blackjack has always been one of my favorite games... hours spent at the tables glaring at the cards, doubling down, hoping for the bust. I immediately started winning so I was able to play with winnings for most of the night, therefore making more risky bets. I socked away $200 fairly quickly, keeping about $50 out to continue playing. I got on a hot streak and before I knew it, I was betting $50, $75, even up to $100 a hand! I normally am a $10-$20 a hand player so this even shocked me, especially when my friend came over and yelled, "Are you playing $75 a hand?!??!"

Things were going great- soon I had $600 in chips in front of me from that $50 seed money. I knew the casino was closing soon so I started to play a little riskier. I doubled down on a $50 bet (dealer showing a 7 and I had an 11).... and the gal in front of me had two 9's and SPLIT them... getting two 10's!! AUGH!! Of course, I got a 3. And lost $100. And she was playing $5 a hand. The funny thing is... I would have kissed her if she would have taken my 3 and I got a ten... but I will just blame her anyway.


OK, last call for blackjack... casino closing. I throw down $100 on my last hand. And I lost.

Oh well... $500 ahead is not bad- although I could've been up $800 if I hadn't lost the last two hands. I will take the win... and definitely be back on the boat!

The bad news? I have felt sick ever since. My friend I was hanging with (and drinking after) informed me of his "bug" yesterday afternoon and now I feel like crap. Clammy, sweaty, loss of appetite, running to bathroom every 10 minutes, etc.

Needless to say, I did NOT make it on my scheduled 12 miler this morning. I am shooting for tomorrow.


Thursday, September 20, 2007

Let the taper begin!

I just flew back home and thanks to the slowest baggage claim crew on the face of the earth... I have time to blog!

I am starting to get really, really excited about Chicago. I felt pretty confident after my first 20 mile run. And by confident, I was fairly convinced I could finish the race without dying. My second 20 miler on Monday solidified my confidence and really got me pumped up. I can't believe it is only 16 days away... where has the time gone?

Oh yeah.

It has been spent waking up at Ass O'Clock to run and beat the heat, turning down social invites to get ready for the long run, and dread... running.

I am ready though. OH YEAH.

And on a fun note- I got a little crazy at a silent auction this week and somehow ended up with a week-long stay at a suite villa in Cabo in June. HOLLLLLLAAA!!!!!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Ohhh YEAH!!

Well, I did it! I woke up, put in my 20 miles, and managed to make a noon flight to Philly. I am now a little sore, tired, and gearing up for a trip to Macy's (shopping addiction much?) and my massage.... awwww....

It feels so good to get the run in. Almost makes me want to avoid the procrastination next time! A couple things I learned from the run....

  • Accelerade works! Hell, most of it might be mental but I definitely felt stronger miles 16-20
  • My new running skirt is soooo cute
  • Wearing TWO sports bras helps with the chaffing in that area.
  • I kick butt!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Um hello? Long run? Are you still there?

OK, let me start by admitting I never got to my long run this weekend. One of my best pals got married this weekend and I was consumed by the bachelorette party, rehearsal, being a superstar bridesmaid, wedding, getting my nails done, tanning, dancing, etc. I did not allow the marathon to take over my weekend and did what I wanted. Now I am left with feelings of guilt because I did not run it yet....

But I AM running it tomorrow morning before I fly to Philadelphia.

I have to.

I will.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Morning run... on the beach in L.A. (MikeW should be proud!!!)

I woke up super early this morning due to the time change to see an email from my coworker:

"I was thinking about driving a mile to the beach and running there this AM…any interest?"

DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUH Tiff!!! I remembered we had a car- wooooopppppeeee!!!

We drive a short jaunt to the beach, forked over $7 to park, and had miles upon miles to run on the beachfront..... it was f'in awesome!!!! Beautiful weather, no humidity, gorgeous scenery, hot guys and lifeguards to stare at. We did a quick 5 miles and I feel rejuvenated!

(Take that, you damn treadmill! I avoided you once again, muhahahhahaha!!!)

Another reason to get excited? In N Out Burger for lunch today... hollllllllla!!!! OK, I might need to work out again tonight :)

Sad, yet true

On my flight from Atlanta to Los Angeles this evening, I hit 120,000 miles flown so far this year.

120,000 miles in 8 months and 10 days

I have even managed to now maintain Platinum status on TWO airlines- Delta (4th year in a row) and US Air.

Will the Tiffster ever slow down? Only time will tell!

On a bleak running note, the area around my hotel leaves something to be desired to a runner. Looks like Treadmill Tiff Time tomorrow...

Saturday, September 08, 2007

An easy (hot) 10 this morning!

So, my training plan called for only 10 miles this morning... my last stepback week before next week's 20 miler and then taper.

The worst part of this week? I have to run 20 miles BY MYSELF. My running partners are doing it Saturday morning and I am in a wedding that day so I know I will be boozing it up Thursday night at the bachelorette party, Friday at the rehearsal, and Sat for the festivities.

So... I am running it Thursday morning. Before work.




This week is nuts. I fly to Los Angeles tomorrow afternoon for 2 days, then to DC on Tuesday evening, then back to Charleston Wednesday night.

Get home at 11 PM Wednesday night.

Run 20 miles in the morning.

3 days of debauchery.

And work.


Oh yeah... on another interesting note. I have received flowers from guys I have been dating/seeing twice in the last two months. Immediately after I receive the flowers, the "relationship" goes to sh*t. Next time the florist calls me with a delivery, I am giving a false address. Seriously.

Hell yeah- the Gamecocks are actually beating Georgia in the 3rd quarter- I am opening a bottle of wine.

Another reason to celebrate? Michigan SUCKS.

If I was dating the Chicago Marathon... we definitely would have broken up by now!

I thought about my relationship with the Chicago Marathon and have come to the following conclusions why we have relationship issues at times...

1. Chicago Marathon (CM) is high maintenance. Weekends need to be planned around CM's demand for long runs. CM makes my alarm go off at 4:00 AM with no apology.
2. I wish I could cheat on CM. I wish I could cheat with another race, like a 1 Mile Fun Run.
3. The timing with CM just does not seem right. Summer training is not as fun as I thought it would be.
4. CM does not appreciate the nice things I do for it. It just keeps asking for more.
5. CM makes me hurt. Physically.

As much as I would love to tell CM, "It's not you... it's me..." - I am not gonna! I think I can make this relationship work- at least for 4 more weeks :)

Tiff + CM

Friday, September 07, 2007

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


I just ate half of an Uno's pizza. And NO... it was not a personal pizza. It was the deep dish Chicago kind that I think is supposed to feed a family of 12. Why? Why did I eat all of that? At least I had a salad and diet soda to go with it.

I feel like this now...
Maybe my niece ate Uno's too?
Damn, I need to run in the morning.

The cutest damn thing in the whole world!

My little niece is sooooo cute!!! I had to post this- yesterday was her first day at the pool and I think she made QUITE the fashion statement. At the tender age of 5 weeks, she already understands the concept of accessorizing without cluttering the outfit. She also understands how to best hide her physical flaws (like baby chub) by sporting the cover-up. Her matching hat really gives the outfit a punch too.


I am in Minneapolis this week- working, working, working... only got 2 hours of sleep last night due to some technical issues with my demo and a 5:40 AM flight. Gonna be up late tonight too. Hope I can make it running in the morning... joy!

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Holy crap... I ran 20 miles this morning!

Well, I feel like I cleared a physical and mental hurtle in my Chicago Marathon training. I ran 20 freakin' miles... in the pouring rain. Luckily, I had 3 running partners (one of them is my boss too) who kept the time rolling with funny stories, debates, and the Kevin Bacon game.

Geez it feels good to accomplish this. I have to agree with Jess about how it feels good to reach this point and just soak it all in. It finally is hitting home that I am really running the marathon in 5 weeks and that I CAN do it. I WILL do it.

The alarm going off at 4:00 AM this morning was an unwelcome sound. I could hear the rain pouring outside and could see brief flashes of lightning. The funny thing is... I did not even consider crawling back into bed. I was DOING this run.

I usually do not eat before a run but decided to eat some peanut butter toast and a banana. BLAH! I could taste the peanut butter in my mouth as I constantly burped it up until mile 10.


I met my running partners and we were off... long before the sun even came up. The first couple miles were easy- I do not look at my Garmin as much when I run in the dark. I felt strong through mile 16 when I started to feel like I was falling apart a bit. I lost one of my clip-on bottles on my hydration belt... my legs started to really, really hurt... I felt like I was being tested. I kept trucking along- not talking as much and just concentrating on breathing and getting through it. Before I knew it- mile 20!

Post-run... I am really, really SORE. I also have some chafing issues from running 20 miles in soaking wet clothing, despite the BodyGlide I slathered on. I am tired, a little dehydrated, and just want to chill.

I feel good though... oh I feel good. I just ran 20 miles :)