Thursday, May 29, 2014


It's Thursday already? 

Wow. Time flies when you're training well.

The week has shaken out like this:
Sunday- 11.7 mile ride to, around, and home from the tri course.
Monday- 4.13 run 
Tuesday- things got interesting.* 4 mile ride, then a brick of 12.6 miles followed by a hard mile (7:15) and a half mile cool down
Wednesday- 2.57 easy run, core work. Later, I rode 2.57 while my husband ran.
Thursday- I'm going to run today. Whether it's one mile or three or five, I haven't decided.

But back to Tuesday. 

I started out by turning on some music before shoving my phone in my bento box- it would be nice to hear a random song each time I had to stop so that I'd have something new to get stuck in my head at different times. I got about two miles away from home and decided I needed to add more air to my tires. I headed back, and as I approached a stoplight, unclipped my left foot-why, I don't know, because every other time I've ridden, I only unclipped the right.

As I'm rolling to a stop with the wrong foot unclipped, it happened. 
I fell
In slow motion.
Just as Ke$ha started to sing, "it's going down/I'm yelling timber!"

All I could do was lay there and laugh... Until I noticed the truck across the rode, so I got up, still laughing, waved and gave a thumbs up.

I didn't even have a scratch. See? Still smiling. 
(My shoulder was sore the next day, though)

But I was really annoyed when I got home because we didn't have the right kind of pump, and I figured this out after I had taken the cap off and caused my tire to deflate some more, so I had to drive to the local bike shop to get the presta valve adaptor before I could fix it. 

And that's why I had a 4 + 12.6 mile ride.

Ever fail to unclip and fall? I'm glad it happened already. Now I know I can handle it, so if it happens during the tri, I (hopefully) won't freak out.

Favorite guilty pleasure songs right now? Pitbull/Ke$ha almost always make the list. I'm debating downloading some Shakira, too. Anything that keeps me moving!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Two Rivers Meet 10k

10k done in 51:5X. 
Ran with two friends from school. 

And I won my age group. Sweet.

How's your holiday weekend going?

Remember, it's not drink and party day, it's Memorial Day- thank a servicemember before you tip one back.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

A good problem to have

See that?

(No, not the spider veins on my heel)

I rested today.

My current "problem" is that I am having so much fun with my bicycle and bricks, I keep forgetting to take a rest day.


I just did six days in a row again of training-either running, or cycling, or both- so I took a mandatory rest day. 

I still walked a half a mile with one of the dogs, though.

And yes, I am a grown woman who still prefers to sit cross-legged. 

Ever forget to take rest days?

Race plans this weekend? I think I'm going to run a 10k. It's ten minutes away, and the weather looks great for Saturday morning, so I might as well. If I add a cool down, it will give me my last longish run before Sunburst, so I probably will. After all, running is almost always more fun in a group!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014


I am taking this triathlon way more seriously than I thought I would. Every brick I've done has me pumped, ready to give it my all come race day. While I am trying not to get too competitive (it's my first, so I do want to have fun), it's also short enough I want to go balls-to-the-wall... Especially since the results from last year make me feel like I can do more than just participate. I can compete at least in my age group.

I did another brick today- 10 mile bike followed by a one mile run (7:27!) with a half mile cool down at the end. 

I am intentionally biking further than race day right now. 

And I can't believe I can throw down a 7:27 mile just 63 seconds after hopping off my bicycle (I'm practicing transitions, too).

The beast is alive.

I want to compete.

You see this face?
And this one?
While I like to run smiling through long races, come tri day, I'll be using my favorite short-distance mantra (the one I chanted to myself when I got my current 5k PR):


Because if I'm smiling, I'm not trying my hardest. And the best race face photos have come from moments when I gave everything.

June 14th, I will get ugly. Just you wait.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Minor grievances.

This annoys me.
I can't find my other capris, so I'm wearing navy and navy.

I don't know why this bugs me when black and black doesn't, but it does.

And speaking of annoying, now that I'm riding my bicycle frequently, my thighs are less squishy... Which is fabulous, except now most of my jeans are uncomfortable.

Both are #femaleathleteproblems and most definitely #firstworldproblems (I hate that I just wrote in hashtags... Ugh. But they work).

So I will stop whining, and go run.

Do you know of any jeans that are cut with a more generous thigh? I brought four pairs, and only one pair is comfortable now- after just 4 weeks of cycling! Definitely going to have to get some new denim this fall if this keeps up.

Any color combos annoy you, like my navy-on-navy?

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Bro kart

Mom and I drove up to Grand Rapids to watch my brother race today.
He races a kart... What kind, I don't know. 
But it was fun to watch. Kind of like watching Mario Kart without the turtle shells.
He came in sixth, but he races like I run- the fun is in participating!

I came home and ride my bike for 9.5 miles. After 4 hours in the car, I needed to move!!!

How was your weekend?

Saturday, May 17, 2014

I love bricks.

From my Dailymile. Follow along, if you're so inclined.
Can I just say I LOVE training right now? Getting a bicycle has made me love running more than I though possible.

I don't know how that works, but that's what has happened.

And then I threw in this whole triathlon thing, and now I'm doing bricks, and I LOVE TRAINING!!!!

Somehow, I'm running faster, too. How does a 9 mile bike ride make me run sub-8:30 miles like nothing? Another thing I just can't figure out.

I'm not complaining.

But I wish I could bottle this feeling.

And good runs or rides lately?

Other fun? I made a new purse and wallet. Sewing isn't happening as frequently as I'd like, since I have to haul out my machine from my mom's closet, set it up, dig out fabric from the storage bins, etc, then put it all away immediately. With our temporary living situation, sewing isn't quite as convenient... or fun.

Happy Saturday!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Big News

I did it.

I signed up for a triathlon.

I bought my superhero costume, I mean, triathlon gear yesterday.

Seriously. I tried it on and felt like I could conquer anything... Even swimming.

This is big, folks.

I did my second brick today- 8.5 mile bike ride, followed by a hard mile and an easy .6. The race is 150  yard swim, 8.5 mi bike, 1 mile run. Since I conquered the second two pretty easily today, I'm super excited. As long as I can swim decently, it will be so fun.

Stay tuned. June 14 is the big day.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Tuesday tidbit

Isn't this the cutest bike jersey ever? Excuse the maniacal grin, I just had a great ride. Five miles of ear-to-ear grinning, surprisingly without beetle snacks.

I love my bicycle. When I got it last fall, I only had the chance to ride it twice before winter arrived (and then threatened to never leave). Then, our house was for sale, so getting a trainer wasn't really an option since I couldn't set it up anywhere.

But sprummer (Indiana spring last a week before bringing summer humidity, so I'm calling it sprummer) is here, and I brought my bike to my mom's, and I love love LOVE my bicycle!

Today was a quick ride, but I'm already plotting either a 30 mile or 60 mile ride (Bloom and Zoom) late summer.

And I might do a triathlon. We shall see!

Runner? Cyclist? Biker? Y'all know I love to run, and now I love cycling, too. Let's hope they help each other out and my fitness keeps improving! I also love riding on the back of my husband's motorcycle. :D

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Warsaw Run for Fun half marathon

It's official. I'm a double agent.

Not a spy, but a marathon maniac AND half fanatic.

And I still have one more half this month.

(Raises hand)

Hello, my name is Kasey, and I have a running problem.

Anyway. Yesterday was the Spring Run for Fun half marathon in Warsaw, IN. I have run it before with Tim two years ago, and we vowed never to return because it was horribly mismanaged- think no water the second half because they ran out, and no food, and a confusing course, etc.

But, I decided to give it another try.

I carried a handheld, which helped a bunch when they ran out of water again. They had way more volunteers along the course, which meant runners actually ran the way they were supposed to. This helped shave off the extra half mile from two years ago.

I approached the race as a fun run, training for Sunburst at the end of the month, so when I saw the most adorable ball of fluff golden retriever puppy, I stopped to pet her. And then again with Quinn the website, and then a pit mix, and another mutt, and another...

I also took walk breaks every time I stopped smiling. The race is called Run for Fun, so if I wasn't smiling, I needed to slow down!

I ended up finishing in 2:02:14. I'll take it! Especially just a week after the Indy mini.
The shirt this year left much to be desired... Unisex sleeveless tech tee? Um, no thanks.

The swag bag was pretty random, too. I can't say I have ever received seed packets. But, ok, cool. Those will get planted!

For $23, it's a fabulous race. As long as you know to carry your own water and don't expect a shirt you'll ever wear. But I can say that yesterday, I ran for fun, so I guess I got my money's worth. :D

Now, I'm just awaiting my official half fanatic confirmation!

How was your weekend? Milestones? Mother's Day adventures? We cleaned off my grandparents' gravestones. Not exciting, but satisfying. And then I weed whacked about ten others because they were veterans.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Indy Mini Marathon Race recap

I had a blast this weekend. I was lucky enough to have a friend to stay with Friday night (since selling our house meant I no longer lived close enough to drive the day of the Indy Mini!). Thanks, Jen!

We went to the expo Friday around 4, and it was way too chaotic for me. I'm used to the way the Air Force marathon does their expo, which is crowded but with a clear flow of traffic. This was just a giant room of seemingly randomly-placed vendors that you had to weasel through to get across to packet pick-up. And the sign was illuminated high on the wall, but we were not the only ones to miss it!

But, despite all that, it was fun enough. They were very efficient once you located where to get your bib, and I did find two shirts that had to come home with me.

We timed it just right, too, as it seemed the already larger crowd started to swell by the time we left the convention center. We killed some time at Circle Center Mall before eating a quick dinner at Noodles & Co. Again, timing was everything- no line at 5 pm, but by 5:30 there was a steady flood of humanity.

Jen and I figured out we would need to leave her apartment by 6:10 to make sure we had plenty of time to park since she was running the 5k and needed to be in her corral by 7. So, alarms were set, and after an average pre-race night of mediocre sleep, I got up at 5 and started my race morning prep.  I ate breakfast, had Cuban coffee, and things were moving (you know what I mean) three times before we left! I jokingly asked Jen if she had put something extra in the coffee.

By 6:10 on the dot, we were in the car and on the way. Thankfully, there was very little traffic, and on the way to the parking garage we planned on using, we found free parking that was only a block from the start/finish. And then, on the short walk to the starting line, I had to pee again but found an unsullied port-a-potty

So far, everything was going better than expected.

We were ready.

By this time, Jen had to get in the corral for the 5k, so we parted ways after planning to meet by the DJ booth in the after party area. Soon, they were off. As I stood there, they announced there would be letters in the family reunion area to find your friends/family. Um, where was this info the day before? Or BEFORE the race started?

It seemed like forever before my wave was even allowed in the corral. But soon enough it was 8 o'clock and wave two was going. Jen should have been close to finishing, I knew, so I felt a little bad that she would now have to wait for me. The organizers were hoping the wave start would let the field spread out more, but all I can say is if this was better, I can't imagine what prior years felt like.

It was crowded. So crowded I felt like I was being bumped or stepped on every ten seconds for the first three miles. Every other big race I have done has thinned out by three miles in, or at least by 5. But no. I was keeping a great pace- the first five miles were at 8:45 or 8:30 pace, so I was starting to think about a PR. But then, they start telling us there is no gu allowed on track. Another volunteer said no food at all.  So I crammed in my last two clif shot bloks from the open package, and  we entered the track. 

It was still crowded, but it was cool to be there. I started wishing I had carried my phone. I think it was about 2.5 miles in the track, and I never walked inside, but by the time I exited, I knew my fueling was messed up, and I knew I needed water. I had my handheld, but not every station had water- some were only Gatorade-p, which I can't have due to food allergies. The track had felt hot, too, and around mile 9 I started having that creepy-crawly feeling all over my skin from dehydration.

And there's where I bonked. 

I had averaged a pace under 8:45 for the first seven miles, but that track sucked the life out of me (and caused my right IT band to get a little grumpy). Miles 8-12 were all around 9:30. At this point, I was just hoping to push through and squeak in under two hours.

Miles twelve felt awful. I walked three times. Mile thirteen was the same. Desperation had me running hard in between walk breaks. When I finally saw the finish, I pushed it, despite feeling like I was going to keel over at any second. It was still so crowded, but I was able to weave my way around and squeeze through the crowd to finish in 1:59:56! Cutting it close, but at least I made my B goal.

Then, I spent an hour trying to find Jen and failed, and ended up walking to my car to grab my phone to call her. The reunion area was as big of a cluster as the expo. And the free beer for participants was the size of a Dixie cup. I was tired and hungry and annoyed and so over the crowd by that point.

Overall, it was fun, but I now understand why everyone I talked to about this race said they would never run it again despite good experiences. It was exhausting having to fight traffic the whole time, and the confusion about food on the track (having some volunteers yell no food while others said only no gu) meant my fueling was not the best. 

Another thing that was odd was how quiet everyone was. Most races, I am surrounded by people clearly having fun. People willing to talk, to engage with each other. But yesterday, it was a sea of game faces. 

So, to wrap it up, I would recommend the Indy Mini, but only if you can handle crowds. Running the race track was awesome (I even hollered, "Frank Shorter, you're a rock star!" When I passed him doing commentary). But the crowd sucked. I also think they should have started the 5k after the half like most other races. I think I'd give it 4 out of 5 stars, because I did have fun, but there were some easily fixable flaws.

How was your weekend?

Big races: are you a fan? I've never had the desire to run a huge race like the New York Marathon, and now I know I probably never will. I hate crowds. Thinking of running in that kind of traffic for a full marathon makes me cringe. I think I will stick to races more on the size of the Air Force Marathon (15,000) rather than the chaos of 35,000.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Vegetable noodles: my current obsession

That, my friends, is a bowl of deliciousness. Zucchini noodles with onion and green pepper topped with marinara and turkey meatballs.

I am obsessed with that Veggetti thing. All I can think about is shredding more vegetables into noodles. Ok, so maybe that's all I think about at meal times, but still. I love that vegetable spiral shredder. 

I have a feeling we will be eating a lot of zucchini that way this year. That makes me really miss my garden.

Have you found any fun kitchen products lately?