Monday, June 25, 2012

Running Tourists

First day we woke up in Rome, my little brother and I said "Let's run around the Colosseum and back." Next day, we ran to the Vatican. This is how we like to tour.
On the way to the Colosseum.

In the morning solitude. 
If you look hard, you can see me. 
On the way to the Vatican
Vatican Square
Basically we woke up at 6am with a map in our pocket and ran out the door with the camera in hand. We handed it off to each other during the run. It's super hot in Italy right now, so early is the only time that you can really run anyway. There was hardly anyone at the Colosseum except a few Italian guys sitting on some steps and enjoying their papers, cigarettes, and espresso. Later that day, we went by and there were hundreds of people. It's kind of hard to take a bad picture in Italy, but there's no way these pics would have been as cool with lots of people around. Seriously, one of the best experiences ever

Monday, June 18, 2012

Marathon Training: Week 2 Recap

The good: I got all my miles in this week. Including Saturday's run, which was a first in a while! The bad: the next two weeks are probably not going to be as good (from a training perspective anyway). My family is going to Italy and it's probably going to be really hard to run. I know though! Italy! I'm pretty sad that James can't join us, but I can't deny that I'm still pretty fracking* excited.

Also, just so you know. My family is not like super rich or anything. My dad has a conference over there for work and they figured that this might be the last chance at a full-family vacation (since I'm like.. married now and all). It's kind of a fluke that I'm living with them this year but deployments do funny things to the norm.

So I had to get a good week of training in since who knows what's happening once I get over there. I got to go 6 years ago (another conference) and I remember it was really difficult to find safe places to run. My little brother is around my speed so I might drag him along sometimes. But honestly.. it's vacation. So I'm going to try to not stress about it too much. :)

Also, my hip flexor is really hurting me after my long run on Sunday, so maybe a few days off won't be so bad.

And.. I might not be posting as much over the next few weeks. Because I'll be enjoying this: 
Best cappuccino in the world. 
<3 Amy

*I've been watch too much Battlestar Galactica

Sunday, June 17, 2012


I just got to Skype with James for the first time since he left from R&R (1 month and 20 days). Since then, we've only been able to IM. No phone calls or Skype. Until tonight. I was seriously so happy to see his face. I teared up a little bit as we were talking but we didn't have very long, so I didn't want to lose it on camera. He told me he got 3 of my packages yesterday at once (they only go so often to the FOB to get their mail) and so he was a pretty happy camper.

After he signed off, I cried. Pretty hard. I had been doing pretty good these last couple weeks and then seeing him, I fell apart. It makes me wonder about that phrase "out of sight, out of mind." Maybe not seeing him lately and just IMing was helping the time go by faster. I get reassurance that he's okay, but I don't see him. Not that I don't want to see him, of course. I can't even express how happy I was to first see his face. But it does make me think a little. Emotionally, deployments are a hard ride and I'm still trying to figure out the healthiest mindset for getting through them.

My favorite word lately is endure. It's quite the motivational word, especially for a distance runner and Army wife. The Bible uses the phrase over and over "his love endures forever." Since I've been quite fascinated with the word lately, I decided to put it into

verb (used with object)
to hold out against; sustain without impairment or yielding;undergo: to endure great financial pressures with equanimity.
to bear without resistance or with patience; tolerate: cannot endure your insults any longer.
to admit of; allow; bear: His poetry is such that it will not endure a superficial reading.
verb (used without object)
to continue to exist; last: These words will endure as long aspeople live who love freedom.
to support adverse force or influence of any kind; suffer without yielding; suffer patiently: Even in the darkest ages humanity has endured.
to have or gain continued or lasting acknowledgment or recognition, as of worth, merit or greatness: His plays have endured for more than three centuries.

Then I thought back to the verse. "His love endures forever." Pretty much all of these definitions describe God's enduring love for us. As Christians, we're called to daily try to imitate Christ. The phrase that stuck out to me is "suffer patiently." Sometimes I feel like I'm enduring the deployment by suffering it very impatiently.

But we endure something that hard because it's something that's worth enduring.

I mentioned before that if I were to get a tattoo, it would be a bird tattoo. Well, I've changed my mind now. At this point, I would be sick of the bird tattoo (a good reason why I shouldn't get a tattoo to begin with) and now I would want to tattoo "endure" on my foot. Of course, I still wrote on my foot with a pen to see what it would look like. Because I'm a dork like that.

But instead of actually getting the tattoo, I found this really cool necklace on Etsy. 
What do you think? Even though you would probably never ever give up Skype, do you think it's possible that it can make you miss your soldier more? 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Happy Picture Wednesday

Check out the awesome socks too. 
Trying on all his gear before the deployment. Hard to believe this was over 6 months ago now! He said he would use me to practice carrying a rucksack with all his armor on. :)

Monday, June 11, 2012

Marathon Training: Week 1 Recap

Monday: 11 mile bike
Tuesday: 3 mile run
Wednesday: 5 mile hill workout
Friday: 3 mile run
Sunday: 8 mile long run

Weekly running mileage: 21

It's been hot. I told myself that I would run in the heat and I think I burned myself out just a little. My workout on Wednesday was what really did it. I did the workout in the heat and then I know I didn't hydrate well enough afterward. So I think that ruined the rest of my week. Which isn't good, because this was week 1 in a 18 week marathon training plan. I was supposed to do a 5 mile "pace" run on Saturday, but it didn't happen. I was still able to knock out my 8 miler on Sunday and at least the week ended okay.

Also, my air conditioner is out. I really hate the heat.

Today was a cross-train day, but I just took it easy and did some stretching and foam rolling. I needed another rest day. Hopefully this week will go better than last.

The moral of this story: hydrate well and don't overdo it in the heat. It's too early in the season to get burned out.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Things I Love Lately

1. Coconut Stuff
I used to hate plain coconut water. But then I've been trying to watch my sugar intake (with all the bad rep that sugar is getting lately) and now things are suddenly tasting sweeter to me. So I treat myself after long runs and harder workouts now. As for the coconut oil, it's actually an antibacterial and an anti-fungal. I'm super paranoid about being barefoot when I go to my weekly yoga or pilates classes. I've caught athlete's foot before and I don't care to ever catch it again. So I'm been just rubbing a little bit on my feet after class when I get home. At room temperature, it's basically the consistency of lip balm. And it smells so coconut-ly nice. Also, coconut is pretty trendy right now so it's fairly easy to find this stuff all over. 

2. My new Star Wars shirt
I only kiss Rebels. 
And yes, my husband does approve. This is actually the third Star Wars shirt that I own and James is actually quite proud of me for it. James is my Han and I'm his Leia.. so of course the shirt is perfect. 

3. This youtube video: 
I actually saw this idea in a different video about a year ago by thelipstickdiaries but she doesn't seem to have it posted anymore. I naturally have a LOT of hair/ it's really thick so this didn't work very well for me before. But I recently got my hair thinned out for the first time and so I decided to try it again. 
Before (just before bed) 
Basically you take a shower, get it mostly dry, then twist it up with the headband like in the video (with maybe a little mousse or hairspray). No heat. Less time. Honestly, I think it's my favorite internet discovery in a while (probably since I found that carrot muffin cream cheese filled recipe a while back). So basically it takes me about two minutes to curl my hair now, as long as I plan ahead. I've gotten a couple weird looks from my family before bed. But it's so worth it. 

4. This iphone cover: 
I don't actually have an iphone yet. James and I don't have smart phones yet and we've been trying to decide between android and iphone. I've been able to play around with both and I like the iphone way better. I told James that I had already picked this Doctor Who cover out and I got accused for picking the iphone just because I couldn't find a Doctor Who cover for the android. hehe. That's not the case, but I can't deny that it did play a factor. 

I'm also aware that I think I'm making it painfully obvious that I'm a bit of a sci-fi geek girl. Maybe I should have made my blog "Geeky Running Army Wife".. it just doesn't flow quite as well. 

<3 Amy

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Happy Picture Wednesday

Me and my two handsome lil brothers at my cousin's wedding last weekend. Love em.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Half and Full Marathon Training

The Chicago Marathon is in a little over 4 months. That seems pretty far away, but my training plan is for 18 weeks so marathon training actually starts todayIt's been marked on my calendar since February when I signed up. Feels really sweet that it's finally here.  

I've mentioned before that I really want to break 1:50 in a half marathon. This is a little problematic since the marathon training that I'm using offers no speedwork. I'm pretty sure speedwork is what enabled me to run my 1:54.

So I'm combining Hal Higdon's half marathon intermediate plan with the marathon intermediate 1 plan. Basically adding in the midweek speedwork (and maybe some hills?). I only planned it up to the my half marathon on week 7 though and we'll see after that. Technically I'm supposed to do a half on week 9, but is anyone really able to coordinate the races exactly anyway? And I have another half marathon scheduled for week 14. Hmm. Maybe it will be possible break 1:50 at one of those? The second one in September seems more likely since it might not be as hot. But the D corral at the Chicago Marathon might already be full at that point..

Also, the 18-week plan is kind of a countdown in itself. The Chicago Marathon is about two months before James gets home. Crossing off each of these workouts is gonna be awesome.

Ready.. set.. go!