Saturday, March 31, 2012

The 21 I wasn't looking forward to




See what I did there, with the title? Typically everyone looks forward to 21... however the 21 miles that I ran this cool Saturday morning was about as far away from a 21st birthday celebration as you can get. I can proudly say though, that today marked the second longest distance that I've ever ran.

Check it out.

However, I'm done. I'm officially in taper mode! Mileage now begins decreasing rapidly, as this coming Monday is the TWO WEEK MARK for Boston! Woohoo! I'll probably move a lot more to the non-impact cardio; elliptical, bike, and maybe even swimming. Lots of core and light lifting, in attempt to not put on any extra lbs before the race.

My post-run snack
As for the job update, I'll keep that short. Week one couldn't have gone better. It's funny because I'm remembering back to the two interviews that I had, and the #1 thing everyone raved about during them was about how great the people in the company are. They were telling nothing but the truth, as everyone has been SO NICE.

Hours are actually really flexible, we get free breakfasts every morning, and I got to order any office supplies that I wanted for my desk! (pink paperclips anyone?) Also, the owner of my company is also the owner of the Baltimore Ravens... I've been told it's mandated that I now become a fan. Won't complain about that. I still have a lot of training and learning to go, but I'm really excited about everything, and currently do not dread going to work.

So there's the brief update. This evening will consist of some grilling, and a lot of sitting. OH and I have to share this picture before I go, because she's honestly one of the cutest 1 week olds I've ever seen.


My good friend Sam's beautiful daughter
Cheers!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A Working Woman




Hello friends!

Once again it's been awhile, however this time I have an excuse! Monday marked the start of my new job, therefore so far this week has been a whirlwind. Anyone who has started at a new company knows how it can be fairly stressful, and a lot to take in at first. It has been no different in my case. I have a lot to learn, yet am lucky to be in a department with some really great people. Everyone has been incredibly welcoming and helpful.

As part of the "getting to know you" phase, a few different people in my department are scheduled to take me out to lunch every day this week. It's fantastic because I get to know people on a lot more personal level. The only downfall; eating out every day this week. Therefore I've been making an effort to make my dinners EXTRA healthy. Tonight I randomly made a sweet potato, pineapple, shrimp wrap with salsa on top. Random? Very. Delicious? You better believe it.



This past weekend two of my most beloved Colorado friends, Les and Kar, were in D.C. for a family reunion, and so Andrew and I made the voyage down to hang out with them on Friday evening. It was super refreshing to see some familiar faces, and to just catch up. It was a also a gorgeous evening in D.C. (upper 70's) and the cherry blossoms were in full bloom.
Kar, me and Les  <3

Although I clearly did not take this picture, it looked very similar.
What's on my plate for this weekend, you ask? Probably some oatmeal, a few smoothies and some pasta. A 21 mile run, and a lot of general catching-up. With Easter one week away, and Boston in two weeks, I have a lot of planning/organizing to get done, now that 40 hours of my week are now blocked out of my schedule, every week (And that wasn't a complaint, I literally wrote that with a smile).

Catch ya on the flip side.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

I got a job.

Really, all you need to do is read the title and you'll know all you need to know. As of this Monday, 3/27, I'll officially have a full-time, big girl job! :)

I actually got the offer last Friday, but didn't want to "officially" announce it until all the t's were crossed and the i's dotted. Due to what I've leaned from other bloggers, I'm going to refrain from using the company's name on here. However I will say that it's with a large staffing/recruiting company, within their headquarters, as part of their development offices. I'll be an administrative assistant (my specialty and strangely, passion). I love the people I interviewed with, my boss already called to congratulate me, and there seems to be an uneven amount of young women in their twenties within this specific dept. Take that statement however you want to, but all I see it as is :NEW FRIENDS! :)

So, there's the news! Very grateful, the timing was perfect... dare I say, divine? Of course.

I'm off to whip together a meal for our small group tonight. I'm making this: fingers crossed that I can pull it off. But, who I am kidding? With all this extra time on my hands, I've become a damn good semi-decent cook. Let's just hope those domestic skills don't fade off once I start utilizing my office skills again.

Anyways, enough rambling. Here's to the weekend.

Cheers,
Kait

Monday, March 19, 2012

1 Month Out

This past Friday marked the 1 month mark until race day. As most people do before races, I'm beginning to get nervous, as well as just a little bit doubtful about some of my goals.

I feel like my running has changed a lot since this past fall. In short, training in Colorado at a high altitude for about 15 months was more beneficial than I ever imagined at the time. Sadly I didn't realize that until now, as I find myself struggling to hold paces that I could do effortlessly over the summer.

This isn't to say I don't have high expectations for the race; I do. I have a list of goals, which I'll share sometime soon on here. Training in both Illinois and now Maryland has proved to be challenging, both in different ways. Illinois, in short, is flat and lacks trails.  As for Maryland, there's certainly no shortage of trails. In contrast to Illinois, it's extremely hilly, and as I've mentioned, there are times when I freak out about my pace, not realizing it's likely I've been running on a slight incline the entire run. Luckily, the large majority of Boston is a slight decline. Check it out.


All in all, I'm not sure what to expect. Mileage definitely hasn't been as high as when I was training for Colorado. I have been training differently, incorporating more pacing and tempo runs. I'm not sure what kind of difference this will make. Long runs for the most part have been good; I knocked out my first of two 20 milers on St. Patricks day. It was a hot one, and I had to have a few water stops, but I pulled it out. Green pancakes followed.

Excellent, and healthy.
The plantar fasciitis in my right heel at the very least isn't getting any worst, and I'm icing that thing like a mofo.
Praise the Lord, weather has been beyond amazing. Almost too amazing, as temperatures are actually beginning to get, do I dare say, hot? Heat usually doesn't bother me too much, yet I can't help but to notice... damn it's humid out here.  However, I'm going to try not to obsess about what the weather may be like on April 16. No control of that.

I also received my new 'race shoes' last week (see below) which I love. Same brand, same model, different color. Black = Badass. The trip to the running store last week resulted in two interviews with the company (which went well) ... more on that in my next post.

No I don't set up my shoes to model for pictures...
The bottom line is, I'm really pumped. My sister will fly out that Friday before the race and make the 8 hour drive up to Boston with Andrew and me. My long-time friend Megan will also be flying out for the weekend, and we'll be meeting up with her on Sunday. I'll stop here with the Boston babbling, because I'm sure you'll get more than enough of that in the weeks to follow.

Meg & me after dominating Chicago Rock 'N Roll 2010
Here's to healthy, happy running these last four weeks before the big dance. Cheers!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Life Lately...

It's funny how life is. The ups and downs of it, the joys and the hardships. Those points you literally think you can't go on, you can't take anymore, there's no possible way your're going to overcome this one.

I reached a point recently where I was convinced that I wasn't being heard. In my own words, "God seems pretty pissed off at me." Ya, I know, that's not how it works. In the midst of my one-track prayers, and my selfish thoughts, it wasn't that He had stopped listening. He was gently saying "No Kait... That's not the plan."

I'm going to chalk up these past 8 months a season of trials. I'm not going to sit here and list off everything that's gone wrong, and struggles I've had. I am going to sit here and tell you how blessed I am. First and foremost, I have an amazing God, who is never going to give me more then I can handle. Ever. And that in itself keeps me going.

As I sat at Dunkin Donuts bawling my eyes out talking to Andrew the other day (true story) he asked me some great questions. What traits do you want to pass on to your kids? What stories do you want to tell them? How you gave up when things got hard, crumbled into a ball and threw a pity party for yourself? Or that you were a fighter, and just kept going, no matter what was thrown at you. Don't you want to be one of those comeback stories, one of those amazing sports movies that gives you chills, leaving you with tears in your eyes as you walk out of the theater?


When putting it into perspective, as hard as I think my life has been lately, it hasn't been. Because there are kids in Africa being stolen out of their beds and forced to murder. There are cities and countries going though earthquakes, tornadoes and tsunamis. And losing everything. Everything. There are people in all corners of the world waking up and wondering how they are going to eat today. Praise God, I have more than enough to eat, and wake up every morning safe, under a roof. Heck, I even have the delicacy of Keurig coffee at this current temp job. So no, life's not that hard.

I'm here for a reason. There's a job here for me (somewhere), there's undoubtably an amazing man here for me, and there's a life here for me. It's going to take some kicking and screaming to get where I dream of being, and it sure as hell won't go as planned. But that's because it isn't my plan.

I'll live and learn. Thankfully I have an awesome, supportive family, and friends who I know will always have my back. I'll take the curve balls as they come, and know that eventually, I'm going to get one right down the middle. And that one's going out of the park.

Here we go.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Pancake Party Time

I LOVE pancakes. It is certainly one of my favorite foods, and if I had the time to make them every morning, I would. (Oh wait, I do...)

Today I have to share my favorite pancake recipe that I've tried so far, which was given to me by a great friend of mine. A friend who I must also give big props to for essentially getting me hooked on running. Marion was my roommate when we were both interns at the U.S. Olympic Committee... and at the time, she was training for a half marathon. I agreed to do a long run with her, never having run more than 5-6 miles prior to this. Marion promised it'd be right around 10 miles. We finished, both exhausted, and she looked at me and said something along the lines of,  "I'm sorry, I don't like to lie to you, but we really did 13 miles. I just wanted you to know you could do a half."
Mar & Me
And that's how it all began. Prior to that day, I had serious doubts about being able to run distance, and no real reason to run a half marathon. That following week, I signed up for the Horsetooth Half Marathon, and the rest is history.

However, back to the recipe. I've tweaked it for my own liking, and found it to be phenomenal. Perfect combo of carbs, fat and sugar to revamp your body after a hard workout/long run.

1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup oats
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
2 tbsp sugar (I use Truvia)
1 egg
1 tbsp of apple sauce (or oil, if you need that extra fat)
1 cup of milk (your choice)

Mix all of that together first, then throw it in the fridge for a couple of minutes to thicken, while you work on the next step.


The topping is next, which in my opinion, is what make these particular pancakes so great. What you need:

1-2 bananas, sliced and quartered length-wise
2 tbsp of butter/margarine
Handful of pecans
1-2 tbsp of pure maple syrup

Start by melting the butter in a frying pan, with the heat on low-medium. Once melted, add in the syrup, nuts, and bananas. Saute this mixture of goodness until the bananas get soft and begin to caramelize.



Next, grab the pancake batter out of the fridge and cook up some cakes on medium heat, adding enough batter to the pan to make whatever size pancakes your little heart desires. Once the pancakes are done, top with your bananas, and voila! Greatness. This pancakes are always guaranteed to keep me full for at least a few hours. (few things do this)

The final masterpiece
I also throw a handful of chia seeds on top, just to get some extra protein. Treat your body to a plate of this as a refueling meal; you won't regret it!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Week 4...

Ah, the dreaded week 4. Why is it dreaded, you ask? No reason really...  I suppose as I continue to approach the 1 month mark of living out here, I put more and more pressure on myself with this job search. It's about as far from fun as things get.

The update as of today? I have a temporary receptionist position, for one week, starting this Friday. The office I'll be in is by no means close, but hey, it's something. Something that will at the very least, help me to pay my April rent.

Andrew and I had the pleasure of having dinner at my Aunt and Uncle's beautiful apartment this past weekend, who also live in the DMV area. (DC Maryland Virginia - just learned that this weekend!) They cooked us an amazing dinner, and the night was full of stories, laughs and wine. It was definitely great to be around family.


Andrew has stage fright from my blog so I cropped him.

This weekend was also the big 1-8 for me; the longest I've run since the Colorado Marathon last May. It went well, I held a fairly steady pace, and the foot didn't give me too much trouble. My water stop consisted of running into a nearby McDonald's on the route... probably the first time they had someone just buy a bottle of water. I can't believe how quickly Boston is coming up - we're approaching the 1 month mark! Couldn't be more pumped. This also means that it's that time again; time for some new shoes. THE race shoes. And unfortunately, I took the liberty of making my running shoes (the only shoes I have ran in thus far) the top of the line Asics model- the Nimbus. Which are far from cheap, but wonderful shoes.

Just gonna have to chalk those ones up on the ole' credit card, and hold my breathe that I have a job by the time that bill comes around. Seriously though, I feel I've done a decent job of being thrifty during this period of no income. Aside from having an amazing man who pays for almost everything we do out here, I'm super careful now when at the grocery store, etc. Another example of my thriftiness: Recently I spilled a smoothie all over my car mat. It smelled really weird and looked gross. However, instead of paying for an expensive car wash, I let the mat sit out in the rain all weekend, and .. voila! Good as new. Just the fact that the mat didn't get stolen was enough to make me happy.

Anyways, I'll leave you with a picture of my breakfast this morning. Hey thanks Chocolate-Covered Katie!

Believe it or not, this is 100% healthy.

Friday, March 2, 2012

TGIF?

I wish I could sit here and rant about how glad I am that it's the weekend. Complain about a rough week at work, and treat myself to a glass of wine... or 3. Odds are I'll still do that.

Still waiting to hear back... I was told I'll know by the end of next week. In the meantime, my newest lead is an Athletic Department job that I'm fully qualified for... just need that in. Working on that part. All I know is I'm getting really REEEEAAAALLL sick of this. My interview yesterday with another random company went fairly well.. until the last man who interviewed me essentially started mocking me, making offhand comments about how 'just because I have a Masters Degree doesn't mean I can get any job I want.' The interview was for a receptionist position, so I'm unsure where the hostility came from. All I know is the drive home left me a combination of angry and really hurt, and required me to stop at Walgreens and buy this:

Yea, it was that bad.

Anyways, so that I don't sit here and start crying, let's talk about something else. Let's talk about how tomorrow, I have to run 18 miles. Yum. I recently discovered there is a local running group in the area, and am thinking about joining. Not sure if tomorrow is the day, as I'm weary as to how my foot is going to hold up. I do plan on doing one of their Saturday bagel runs sometime in the near future.

Today consisted of 8 miles at pace (or what I would like race pace to be). I overdid it, of course. When I will learn to hold a pace, God only knows.

I also had a bomb smoothie today. It had a sweet potato in it! Sounds strange, but I LOVED it. Check out the recipe here.

what a beautiful color.

Lastly, did you hear Taylor Swift and Tebow went on a date!!!? I would like to give HUGE props to Karlie and I for calling that in ehhhh say, this past November. See below:

November 28, 2011

@RunKaitrun: @Posieglitter & I just made the executive decision that @taylorswift13 & @TimTebow should wed. And make beautiful humble sparkly children

Taken straight from Twitter.

And with that, have a fantastic weekend.