Monthly Archives: July 2011

Week Recap

Well, my goal of posting everyday to every other day lasted exactly 5 posts, so here are the highlights of the last week. I got to spend a lovely evening with my kiddo and her family which was full of warmth and smiles.

This weekend I went up to Seattle to see one of my best friends, Gina.  Gina is training for the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in October. At the end of the course she’ll greeted by a fireman holding Tiffany’s necklace. Good choice Gina. She was scheduled to do a 5 miles run but I talked her into doing 8 with me. She then proceeded to kick my ass for 8 miles. I guess that’s what happens when you’ve run multiple half and full marathons, 8 miles seems like a piece of cake.

Pre-run non-sweaty faces

We didn’t have the best plan, we started at 11:00 on a very warm and sunny day, and we didn’t bring water. Very bad idea. I got dehydrated pretty quickly and decided I had to get a handheld water bottle. I also should have brought my camera, it was a great photo opportunity for bridge lifts. We got stuck on the Ballard Bridge for a good 10 minutes and saw the Fremont Bridge lift as well.

Not taken while running, but conveniently it was lifting again as we were driving

I had an ok run, but my hips were killing me for most of it. If any one has remedies for hip pain, it would be much appreciated! Afterwards Gina and I spent some time sprawled out on Dan’s floor trying to stop sweating, and then ate our way through the rest of the day, including these goodies:

Awesome cupcake model

Today we took a trip to Super Jock and Jill to get a few necessities.

The book is from Powells, I may be becoming a bit obsessed with running.

Random Running Ramblings

I ran 4 miles yesterday, which is not the most impressive statement ever, but it was a good 4 miles, the first time I’ve made it 4 miles and felt good. I even did some Pilates afterwards (thank you Netflix). It was 4 miles full of my mind wandering off thinking about ridiculous things instead of focusing on my hips hurting, or how far I had left. I also had the nice distraction of running past someone I went on a date with a bit ago and then didn’t speak to again. Not sure if he recognized me, it took me a second to place him, then I instinctively ducked my head and ran faster, then spent the next mile debating whether I should have stopped or not. Then half a mile after that I noticed a fig tree just like the one in Jen’s yard and spent the next 3/4 mile day dreaming about the amazing fig fest that will happen in August. Then I was almost home! A very enjoyable 4 miles!

That 4 miles is a vast improvement of the 7 I did this past weekend. The first 3.5 was pretty good, then I turned around and headed back to Sellwood from OMSI and all of a sudden it was hot. It’s been so long since we’ve seen the sun for longer than a 5 minute cloud break here in Portland that I was a bit confused. But 3.5 miles of running in direct sunlight quickly got me reacquainted with the bright yellow blob in the sky and made me think about getting one of those silly looking water bottle/fanny pack things. It also makes it the second year in a row of getting sunburned while doing something for CCA, which is really just ridiculous. (Last year it was volunteering at a charity golf tournament and sitting in the sun at one of the holes for 5 hours. I looked like a lobster.) I have had some interesting experiences while running along the Springwater Corridor. During the first half of the  7 I got passed by an older lady in one of those electric scooters and then saw her pull over and start to set up her umbrella next to a bench over looking the river, which I thought was pretty cute. On my way back I heard someone yelling. Turned out to be the older woman who was reading her bible out loud to the river. Make that SCREAMING the bible out loud. Which was slightly less odd than the guy I passed a few days before who must of been tripping on something because he was yelling at something/someone only he could see. Then he started to violently empty the contents of the bag he had with him, which included a beer can that cracked open and started spinning in circles while shooting beer everywhere. Ah Portland, you keep me on my toes.

An Evening with the Children’s Cancer Association

Once a month CCA has a Chemo Pal meeting, each meeting having a different guest speaker. This month the speaker was Heather Keller, MA, CM-Th, Music-Thanatologist who spoke about using music in palliative and end of life care. It’s a bit different than what we do as Chemo Pals but it was wonderful to hear about another resource that can help our kiddos. The thing I enjoy most about Chemo Pal meetings being around other Chemo Pals. I sometimes find it hard to talk about my experience as a Chemo Pal because when most people think about kids with cancer it’s all sad thoughts. I feel odd saying that I look forward to my kiddo’s appointment or enjoy my time at the hospital, but I do. I hate that she has to go through chemo but love that I get to have the privilege of helping her through it. When I’m at the hospital nothing else matters, only she does. It doesn’t matter if I’m not in a great mood, I didn’t get much sleep, had a bad soccer game the night before, or even have just gone through a break up, at that time my only goal in life is to bring a smile to her face. It’s not just about bringing joy to your kiddo, but experiencing the joy with them to the fullest and with that the pain and sadness the comes with cancer becomes somewhat more tolerable, until some point where the joy becomes the the main feeling. That’s what I feel when I see or think or talk about my kiddo. The joy of seeing her grow, progress and heal. I feel so honored to get to go through this experience with her.

On a less serious note, I had a chance to restock my toy bag. Each Chemo Pal gets a toy bag that they bring to the hospital with them and CCA has a toy closet in their office that you use to fill your bag. I got some awesome new goodies:

I think my kiddo is going to have a blast with them, she’s really into animals and counting these days.

So, I know I said in my first post that I wasn’t going to bug you too much about donating, but it’s going to happen in this post. Even the smallest of donations helps buy a new toy or match a kiddo with a Chemo Pal. You know you want to and it’s super easy, just click the donate link at the top of the page and you’ll end up at my fundraising page. Thank you!

New Shoes!

Driving home from the 8k on Sunday Jen and I were lamenting about the days when A would get the 50% off coupons to the Adidas store. I’ve been wanting new shoes because my hips have been killing me after each run. A few hours later, while watching the World Cup final with a friend, she mentioned having a 50% of coupon to Adidas that she could forward on. How convenient! So Jen and I wandered up to the Adidas store, which was an absolute madhouse, but even in the chaos I found this fabulous pair of shoes

Jen thinks the bottoms look like teeth

They’re great. They’re a bit hardcore looking because they’re for trail running but they were the best option for support and comfort. Plus, they have a mud flap/launching pad off the heel, which is just fun to have. I took them for a 3 mile spin today, and hardly any hip pain! My right hip did start to ache near the end but I think that’s more from the overenthusiastic Jackass who flung himself through the air and landed on on my hip during futsal a few weeks go. You were going to get the ball if you just went straight up for the header dude, you were at least 6 inches taller than me.

Harvest Days 8k!

I ran my first race today! I may have played a hundred soccer games growing up but I’ve never run a race so I decided it would be a good warm up for Chicago. It was a typical Washington summer day, about 55°F and rainy even though the forecast said partly cloudy last night.

Getting ready, glad I brought my rain coat.
Fancy timing device that Jen really liked.

I was a bit nervous before the race, and felt a bit like I was in a cattle herd but after the first turn I could settle into a rhythm.

We're off!

I felt better as the race went on, I guess that’s a sign I should actually warm up before running (I’ve gotten lazy in my old age). Turns out that the hill I thought would be a gentle incline was not so gentle but I powered up it the best I could and it was mostly downhill from there.

Coming into the finish, can't miss the purple CCA shirt!

Jen was at the finish line to meet me, such an awesome friend to get up at 5:30am and drive me to Battle Ground and then hang out in the rain. All in all, it was a lot of fun and I feel a lot more prepared for the half.

Proof

Welcome!

Hi there! Welcome to my blog. This is my first attempt at blogging, so please don’t mind the bumps. The purpose of this blog is to document my preparation for running the Chicago Half Marathon on Sept. 11, 2011. Along the way, I ‘m hoping to raise $1000 for the Children’s Cancer Association. My involvement with CCA started about a year ago when I was looking for a place to volunteer with to gain some experience in hospitals as a prep for nursing school. I quickly decided that the Chemo Pal program was right for me, and was matched with my kiddo in Oct. 2010. The first appointment I went to was overwhelming, I wasn’t sure if I was helping or getting in the way, but then my kiddo grabbed my hand and took me for a walk around the clinic and since then this journey has been wonderful. So for her, and every kid that has, is, or will be fighting a serious illness I want to help CCA bring joy and smiles to their worlds. And you can help too! Visit my fundraising page to donate. Thanks!

P.S. Most posts will be more about how my training is going and less about pestering you to donate.