28 June 2010

Never Say Never

Yesterday I finished my second half marathon in less than a year. Despite training slightly less and knowing more about pacing myself, I finished at the exact same time as I finished my first one. To the minute.

2 hours 35 minutes EXACTLY.

I promptly announced my retirement from half marathon running.
I am NEVER doing that again.

17 May 2010

The Comfort of Siblings

Had a great weekend with my family, even though we gathered for a sad occasion. Was more than happy (thrilled? delighted? comforted.) to spend Saturday night with my brother, sister in law, sister of sister in law, and dearest cousin talking into the wee small hours of the morning.

There is such an amazing comfort in the company of siblings and those you love like siblings. When you look at someone else and see your eyes, or your smile, or your Reckenroll nose and know that someone else sees the world through your same DNA. It's a feeling of belonging like no other and one that I don't think could be replicated in anyway. The months I spent fighting with my brother last year were the longest of my life. We're better friends than ever because of it but I would take it all back if I could. I was reminded on the weekend of how glad I am we moved past it...stubborn as we are.

I never really like the book On Beauty by Zadie Smith but I've always loved the following passage:

"People talk about the happy quiet that can exist between two loves, but this, too, was great; sitting between his sister and his brother, saying nothing, eating. Before the world existed, before it was populated, and before there were wars and jobs and colleges and movies and clothes and opinions and foreign travel -- before all of these things there had been only one person, Zora, and only one place: a tent in the living room made from chairs and bed-sheets. After a few years, Levi arrived; space was made for him; it was as if he had always been. Looking at them both now, Jerome found himself in their finger joints and neat conch ears, in their long legs and wild curls. He heard himself in their partial lisps caused by puffy tongues vibrating against slightly noticeable buckteeth. He did not consider if or how or why he loved them. They were just love: they were the first evidence he ever had of love, and they would be the last confirmation of love when everything else fell away."

— Zadie Smith (On Beauty)

Saw this today

"Embed the truth. Stop Propoganda"

Wanted to ask the driver, "Who decides which is which?"

Stupid bumper sticker.

10 May 2010

Pearls of Wisdom

Some of the best advice I've ever gotten:
  • You can't think your way out of everything
  • Success comes from failure. Failure builds character and teaches. There's no one out there with a perfect record. That's how you learn to be successful next time.
  • Not everything needs to be solved right now.
  • Always know your way home. You don't have to go there, you just need to know how to get there.
  • A crisis on your part is not a crisis on my part.
  • Be sincere in your relationships. You can't control anything (or anyone) in this world except how you interacted in the situation. If you can walk away holding your head high and knowing you acted in a way you feel good about, well, that's all you can expect of yourself.
  • Believe someone the first time they show you who they really are. People can change...but usually don't.

What I Learned this Weekend

  • This is my last 1/2 marathon. Six miles is a good distance to train to. I like it. I don't really feel the need to run further.
  • I should always put on pants first thing in the morning. You never know who is going to come knocking on your door or at what time around here.
  • You can't expect that there will always be a wine opener.
  • I need to play a lot more poker...and watch others play it too. Too many strategies happening at once to keep track of with an untrained mind.
  • Even at 33 years old, I sometimes still have no idea what's going on.
  • Cooking for my friends makes me exceedingly happy. Anyone want to come over for dinner?

04 May 2010

Simple Pleasures

I've noticed lately that there are some little things that happen in my day to day life that bring me ridiculous amounts of pleasure.
  • Cream in my coffee. Life is short. A dash of cream in my morning coffee won't kill me or make me fatter and quite frankly, I'm nicer afterward. If you're into cream, go for it and don't feel a lick of guilt
  • Race Car morning commute. There is a point in my commute, every morning, where 520 opens up to 4 lanes and you temporarily have the opportunity to drive like a race car driver. VROOM! I do this everyday. It makes me exceedingly happy for exactly 45 seconds.
  • Speaking of driving, I feel pretty awesome when I can change lanes on the freeway and not hit any of those bumpy things.
  • Big words in daily conversation. Nebulous. Fiduciary. Pedestrian (not the noun, the adjective).
  • People who know the difference between the noun and the adjective of the same word.
  • A snuggle for the cat in the morning and a belly rub for the dog at night. I don't make these rules, I just play along with their demands.
  • Quoting a random movie and having someone else get it right away. It's like a joke told well.
  • A perfectly made Belvedere martini
  • Bad ass sunglasses. *Almost* makes you feel cooler than your favorite heels...almost.

And finally, being told "I read your blog. You should blog more."

In a word, "AWESOME." In more than one word, "a shameless plug for comments"

29 April 2010

Perception is 9/10ths of the Law

I've been thinking a lot about perception lately. My perceptions, other's perceptions, the perceptions of the group, the perceptions of the individual...I'm in PR, it's what I do.

Yesterday was a 4 mile training run day. That's not the long run anymore. That's just a short daily run. I have to do it at least twice this week. I remember when four miles sounded like a ridiculously long distance. Now that I have to run 6 miles for a long run, four miles seems like a nice break.

Perception is everything.

When I got to Green Lake to meet Goonder to run, the clouds were rolling in, the rain was starting and my motivation (which had been so strong before I spent 35 minutes commuting in rush hour) was waning at best. Beer and a dark pub where I could sulk about my lack of work/life balance sounded like a much better idea. Goonder said NO and four miles later, I had actually enjoyed 45 minutes alone with my music, my thoughts, and my feet hitting the pavement. The sun had come out (literally!) and I'd even managed to solve some of the things that had been plaguing my mind all day. My body was post-run happy high and the funky cobwebs had been replaced by a pleasant sense of self-satisfaction.

Perception is everything.

Finally, it's been crazy busy at work lately (hence my lack of posts). CRAZY. I find myself constantly stressed about the work I'm doing, the work I'm leading my team to deliver, the impact I have on the people who work for me, the impact I have on the people I report to...and the crazier it gets the more I perceive myself as not delivering in the way I know I can. I dream about it at night. Who cares about all the things we accomplished today when there is still tomorrow's problem to solve?

And then I get a note today from one of my team members telling me she thinks the team is absolutely rocking it out this week and she's feeling amped about the whole thing and our great results.

Perception isn't everything.

04 April 2010

What I Learned this Weekend

  • Heels are the preferred and correct shoe strategy for concerts at the Showbox. I can see from pretty much anywhere I stand
  • I am kinda tall in my heels...I'm also kinda loud when you are ridiculously tall and try to stand in front of me.
  • Alice Smith is gonna be really famous someday...and should be more famous right now.
  • Easter really is better with candy and 5 year olds are the bestest...although I suspect some of those jellybeans may or may not have been made with crack the way I was eating them. So good.
  • Gray, overcast and kinda cool is not only excellent yard work weather, it's great for running
  • I can run 4 miles without stopping! (Maybe the jellybeans helped?)
  • The Diller Room isn't that cool, kinda hard to find, and not worth the parking hassle...but it makes an awesome martini.
  • I know a GREAT secret squirrel parking spot in downtown. No, I'm not sharing.
  • Clams + Chorizo + Broth + Bread = Happy
  • I've been overfeeding the H dog for the last year. Sorry fat girl, we'll get it right from now on!

02 April 2010

Is it five o'clock yet?

Today is a funk filled day.
One of those days where you wake up and you're just generally disappointed in the state of your world. Can't pinpoint any single cause or reason - nothing set it off - but something is just not right and it feels not right in every aspect of everything.

Sigh. That ever happen to you?

Being an optimist most of the time, days like today really throw me. The "oh poor me" moment is not one I am generally familiar with and when it full on assaults me like this, I tend to have one of two reactions:
  1. Hole up in my house in yoga pants and not come out until the sun shines again.
  2. Go out and drown my sorrows with a good friend.

Today, I am choosing option #2.

Funk, I will conquer you. I shall drown you in good cheer and a decidedly pointed decision to shake you off and turn the frown upside down. It's all about attitude right?

If I repeat it enough, I'll believe it...and if that don't work, well martinis help.

The weekend cometh. Good friends await!

01 April 2010

We’re never gonna beat this if belief is what we're fighting for

Oh John.

John. John. John.

FINALLY saw John Mayer in concert last night at Key Arena. I say FINALLY, because of all the music I have seen in the last few years - in London and in the USA - John was always the concert that I could never catch. From his first album to his last celebutante girlfriend, I wanted to see if the live performance was a good as the live albums lead me to believe they would be.

(Yes, I own his live albums. Me. Investing in a live album! For the record - I generally find compilations and live albums to be a waste of time. I already bought that song, why would I REBUY it, just to have it grouped with a bunch of other songs I already own? And live? Please. Unless you are Tom Petty, you probably sound better in the studio, so let's just keep you there ok buddy?)

But I digress.

Turns out, he is awesome in concert! That white boy can play a mean guitar and he surrounds himself with amazing musicians. Didn't phone it in. Not one single second. Great seats were had, great songs were listened to. He even mixed in a little MJ and Fleetwood Mac much to our surprise and delight. I turn a blind eye to his personal life, but the words. The words!

The words get me everytime.

Oh, and dudes with arm sleeve tattoos = HOT.

Thanks for a great night John. Let's do it again sometime.

29 March 2010

A Real True Effort

Hi, me again. I am not going to say I'm back...not yet. But I am hear today so read on!

I should start by letting you all know, I kicked that 1/2 marathon's arse. My goal was under 3 hours. I thought I would be "very pleased" to do it in 2:45. So when I got my chip time and it was 2:35 (TWO THIRTY FIVE!!) I was so pleased with myself that, still on my runner's high, I ran (no pun) right out and signed up for another one!

And I convinced several new others to do it with me. So many others that we've formed a team: Team Chubby Bunny.

Yah, OF COURSE we're gonna get t-shirts.

The nice thing about this is that it's all totally selfish on my part. Having done major bouts of athleticism before, like a triathalon, and then signing up for another one, I know a little something about motivation.

I lose it.

Without the fear of the unknown and concerns that I might actually die on the course if I don't run today, well, training tends to drop off and those lofty goals tend to be quickly replaced with a glass or three of red wine. After the first time doing the big daunting event, there's a sick level of smugness that sets in. It keeps my ass on the couch when it should be running.

"You've done this before, you know how it goes" (that's the smugness talking).

However, I am finding that by virtually coaching this new team through it, I am discovering new motivations. I have always been a walk the walk kinda girl and if I am pushing for others to do push themselves, I better be willing to deliver too. How can I possibly expect others to follow a training that I am not following myself? I can't. Not in good conscience.

So to my fellow members of Team Chubby Bunny, thanks for the motivation and reinforcing one of the things I know to be true in life: It's always better with a friend.

To the rest of the blogging world. I might be back, I might not. But the running will continue!