Saturday, December 1, 2012

Happy December!


Today's run with Runners Edge of the Rockies started with 50 degree temperatures!  But yet still there were discussions concerning whether a live or artificial tree was preferred...Colorado's weather is just crazy...and I'm not complaining.  I prefer a live tree but I think I'll stick to some poinsettias this year.


It's been a long time since I last posted.  Happy Trails inspired me to post today.  I was so happy to see their update!  And inspired by Kathleen's resilience and optimism. 


I started a new job on October 1st.  And I spent all summer long enduring a long hiring process.  So that's what has been keeping me busy.  This is a dream job and it has been challenging and absolutely wonderful.  It requires a bit of travel so that has been a huge adjustment when it comes to fitting in runs and other workouts as well as eating healthy.  I got quite a bit off track, although I am happy to report that I am slowly getting back on track.  I was actually eating meals at Burger King, Subway and convenience stores.  And when I wasn't eating fast food, I was eating a lot of meals out with too much alcohol.  WHAT THE HECK?  This only caused a lack of motivation to be active and compounded the normal stress one experiences in a new job. 


I just finished an entire week of no processed foods and viola by body and mind is happy.  Priceless.   And as a bonus, I dropped 4.0 pounds in this past week without ever feeling hungry and without counting calories.  The importance of food just can't be underestimated when it comes to our overall well-being.  My meals this past week have included a lot of green monsters, eggs, squash, spinach, zucchini, kale, brussel sprouts, carrots, coconut oil, made-by-me bison meatloaf, chicken, apples, blueberries, walnuts, almonds, pecans, yogurt, parmesan and blue cheeses and dark chocolate.  It's a relief to be back on track.


Over the summer I turned myself over to a friend to help my running.  She has been patient especailly when I have not.  And what might be counterintuitive, we went to a walk/run at predetermined distance intervals, gradually increasing the run distance and shortening the walk distance.  It has been a slow mind-numbing process but guess what?  I'm getting faster.  I have to remind myself of this when my patience runs thin and I want to ditch the walk breaks.  While I won't PR at my next race (Tucson Half next weekend), I will beat my time of my last half and I do think I can manage my race better and negative split.  Stay tuned!

Happy Running!

Laura

Friday, July 27, 2012

Summertime

Here's what I've been doing so far with the summer....


Herman's Gulch Trail


Herman's Gulch Trail

Herman's Lake


Reynold's Park

Reynold's Park looking at Pike's Peak

Reynold's Park

Copper Kettle Brewing Company

Strange Brewing Company

Renegade Brewing Company

Pike's Peak via Cog Railway

Colorado is a really special place to live.  The summer has been low-key.  Or another way to put it - I haven't been training as much as I've been hitting some trails and local breweries.  But I have my sights set on my next marathon - the Tuscon Marathon in December.  So the next few months will be focused on building a base and losing my beer weight.

Happy Running!

Laura

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Salad Anyone?

I still have things to share.  Running things.  Dating things.  Wildfire things (sending positive vibes to Happy Trails). Other life things.  But my internet at home is not working as well as it should.  So this post is another Foodie Pen Pal Post, courtesy of an unsuspecting neighbor's internet signal.  I should have the internet problem solved this week....Comcast willing!

In the mean time, a quick post as to my Foodie gifts I received this month.  The makings of salads, use of crusty bread and a pasta salad recipe!  So here's this month's surprises sent to me by Cindy in North Carolina:


  • Bella Tavola Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • The Biltmore's Creamy Vidalia Onion Dressing (I soooo love onions)
  • Bread Dipping Seasonings (including Rosa Maria (rosemary & garlic), Sicilian Blend (garlic, onions, tomatoes), Tuscany Blend (sundried tomatoes & basil), and Parmesan Blend (roasted garlic & cheese)).
  • Gourme Mist Fusions - Balsamic Vinegar + Pomegranate Spray

Is it dinner time yet?

Don't forget that you can participate in the Foodie Pen Pal program too!  Just sign up before July 5th!

foodiepal stamp2 Foodie Penpals


















Cindy also sent me a pasta salad recipe I can't wait to make...let's hope I can find some nice local produce to test this recipe out.  Here's the recipe she sent:

Greek Pasta Salad
1 bag colored rotini
1 pkg. sliced turkey
5 roma tomatoes
1 cucumber
1/2 red onion
1 to pkgs feta cheese (she likes the basil tomato feta)
Greek vinagrette

Cook pasta.  Rinse in cold water.  Dice turkey and vegetables.  Add to cooked pasta.  Add feta.  Mix in Greek vinagrette. 

Greek Vinagrette
1/3 c. olive oil
3 T red wine vinegar
2 T lemon juice
1/2 t. dried oregano
1 t. sugar
1 clove garlic minced
1/4 t. black pepper.

I think I might try swapping quinoa for the pasta. 

Happy Running!

Laura

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Blue Moon and Bar Nuts

I'm back.  I know I disappeared again.  Honestly, the last few months have been filled with more downs than ups, and really, who wants to read a whiny blog post?  I certainly don't want to read one!  This past weekend, the fog lifted and the funk started moving out.  Thankfully, because I was getting to a point where I couldn't stand myself.  I'll bring you all up to speed later - no worries, nothing tragic.  Today, I'm going to let you know about the Foodie Pen Pal program.


The Lean Green Bean


Click on the Foodie Pen Pal button - the deadline is June 4th!  You get matched with one person to send a goodie box to.  And you get matched with a different person who will send you a goodie box.  You put together a $15 goodie box worth of food items, respecting any known allergies or aversions your pen pal may have.  And you get your own little goodie box.  I had the great fortune to have Bridget assigned to sending me a goodie box.  She's a cool woman who recently moved to the Denver area (Lakewood).  The fact that we were paired was definitely to my benefit.  She could simply drop off my goodie box.  And Bridget took great care of me.  Even though she is raising two little ones, she included homemade goodies!  Here's some pictures:





The Bridget goodie box included:
  • Lemon poppyseed bread
  • White chocolate macadamia cranberry cookies
  • Bar nuts
  • Homemade granola
  • Choco-love Raspberries in Dark Chocolate Bar
  • Blue Moon Spring Sampler 12-pack
While I enjoyed the entire goodie box (and I'm still working my way through it), I have to say my favorite was the bar nuts.  Spiced but sweet.  Perfect balance which included fresh rosemary.  Excellent.  I'll see if Bridget will share the recipe and I'll post it here.

Maybe you would like to participate?  The great thing about this program is that you commit month to month - no three month or year long commitment.  So if you are too busy one month to put together a package, no need.  And while Bridget shared her baking/cooking skills with me, you needn't send homemade stuff unless you'd like to.  I didn't bake or cook anything for my penpal.  To sign up, just click the Foodie Pen Pal button below.

The Lean Green Bean


Happy Running!

Laura

Monday, February 6, 2012

Welcome 2012!

Yes.  I realize it is the first full week of February.  I'm a little behind.  Not because I haven't been running or eating.  That's well under control.  I will admit that I haven't been dating.  I think I'm primarily behind because of preparing, doing and decompressing from oral arguments before the Colorado Supreme Court.  It was a totally awesome experience.  Of course I was nervous throughout prepping right up until I started my argument.  And then it was fun.  I was peppered with questions and thankful I didn't have to use my 45 minutes worth of prepared questions.  I rather enjoyed the exchange.  And then I was exhausted.  After this weekend, I finally feel like my old self. 

Denver got hit with snow on Thusday/Friday.  15 inches of the stuff in the metro area.  Thankfully our coach moved our run to Sunday and I got in a long, arduous 14.5 miles along the Cherry Creek Bike Trail.  It was beautiful!



So on with the new year!  I do love a new year.  It's a new beginning, time to reflect on what is important to you and what you would like to accomplish.  I never feel pressure about it.  I know a lot of people try to avoid setting goals and resolutions.  However my personal belief is that it is a perfect time to express your goals.  So here's three of mine.

  • RUN a sub 5:00 marathon.  This might take a while to accomplish - it would be a huge accomplishment for this very slow runner.  But I'm working to give it my best in time for the Colorado Marathon on May 6th.  And if that isn't in the cards, then in the Fall.

  • EAT in a way that supports my goals.  I started keeping a journal to track how my body responds to what I eat.  I want to eat foods that my body loves.  I actually ate cauliflower and brussel sprouts yesterday.  Really.  I'm not sure it will be a regular occurrence, but who knows?  I'm learning it isn't about some perfect macronutrient breakdown and that no matter how many books I read, the only expert on my body is me. 

  • DATE people I meet through the people I already know.  I can't keep doing the same thing over and over again and expect a different result.  So I'm on hiatus with the online dating thing.  I'm just trying to put out there that I'm looking and seeing if people who know me can connect me.  Fingers crossed.  I have one email contact so far. 
Here's to the remaining 11 months of 2012!!

Happy Running,

Laura

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

May It Please the Court



27 days from now I'll be opening oral arguments before the Colorado Supreme Court with that little saying.  Gulp.  Unless my client settles.  Which seems unlikely.  I'm 70% excited, 30% freaked out and 100% frightened.  I'm lucky.  Many attorneys don't get an opportunity to do this.  I love oral arguments, so that's why I'm excited.  I'm 30% freaked out because that will help me keep my edge - and who wouldn't be freaked out?  This isn't oral argument before law school professors.  The 100% frightened - if I can't pursade the justices, my client may lose a whole lot of water.  And this isn't law school, this is a living breathing for-real client - a ranching family who I really have come to like so well.  A negative outcome could hurt them for generations to come.



I was thinking last night about writing the traditional end of the year goal update post and new goals for the future.  And I wasn't feeling all that inspired.  When I read the order from the Court scheduling oral arguments, it struck me.  This year has been less about running and a whole bunch more about work.  I just ended my fourth year of practice as a water attorney and my responsibilities grew very much this past year.  I got to write a brief before the United States Supreme Court.  And now oral arguments before the Colorado Supreme Court a few weeks away.  I was ready to write off 2011 as an uninspired year.  Not anymore.

No worries, I'll chat about my running goals for 2012 in the next few days.  I think I remember how to run...

Laura

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Must Do!

Words cannot adequately describe the views you experience while running Rim Rock Marathon.  I'm not sure there is a more beautiful marathon!  OK, maybe Big Sur, but I haven't done that one yet.  These are not my pictures - I was racing!  While the photos are stunning, you really have to see it yourself to get the full experience!

The course winds from Grand Junction, on Colorado National Monument Park's Rim Rock Road and ends in Fruita.  A review of the course profile should prepare you for what the race is...2000 feet of elevation gain and 2100 feet of elevation loss.  There is very little flat terrain.  By the end you really were hoping for some flat terrain...

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The race takes you  through three tunnels - one on the ascent and two on the descent.  I was not a fan of the tunnels.  Sure it was "cool" but it was really dark!  While I read race reports that said the first three miles were the toughest uphill miles, I would add that mile four was no picnic...it felt the steepest to me.

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The high point occurs during the first half of the race...not a mountain race but if you are a flat-lander, you might feel it a little.  We were lucky that the weather cooperated - the predicted possible rain and snow stayed away and we had partly cloudy and partly sunny skies - and some windy sections...

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And the views are breath-taking...

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It was almost as if we had the park to ourselves.  The park closes the west bound lane to all traffic, so there were many miles of no vehicle traffic.  My kind of race!  I thought Ute and Upper Ute canyons were going to be the highlights.  And then came Monument Canyon.  Wow...

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Wow.  Wow.  I made the cut-off with a comfortable cushion (and at a few points I used the "I can. I can" mantra provided by Happy Trails).  Every mile marker seem to appear well before I thought it would and every aid station was a pleasant surprise.  I was weepy at mile 13 when I knew I would make the 20 mile cut-off with no problem.  I know everyone told me it would not be a problem, but I was feeling very undertrained going into this race, so I was extremely nervous about this.  And I was weepy again at a few points before mile 21.  I wasn't hurting or angry or sad, I was relieved that I was finally having a fun race.  Or maybe the hormones were in overdrive...

The volunteers were awesome and every aid station seemed to have Hammer gels, bananas, orange slices, pretzels, water and sports drink.  This was not a PR race for me, but I was happy with my effort.  The hardest part of the course occurred between miles 21-23.  I think this was the steepest downhill section.  And my lack of hill training really became evident on this section - such a shame to not take total advantage of the downhill.  I was not a fan of the last few miles outside the park on HWY 340 but the finish area was well in sight and kept me distracted from the traffic and the wind.

This was a great way to end a rather lack-luster racing year.  I think everyone "must do" this race...or at least make a visit to the park and hit the trails!  I know I will race this one again...and now I think I need to go and put more biofreeze on my legs...oh my poor legs!

Happy Running!

Laura