clecisions, clecisions

i now know the answer to whether or not i’ll run another 10k and that answer is… not only will i run a 10k, i’ll make it a 21k or maybe a 22.4k (but who’s measuring?)  which begs a new question – will i ever do a 1/2 marathon again?

this time last year i ran in the chiang mai marathon – the mini marathon that is.  my first 10k.  i didn’t hate it, but i didn’t love it.  and i didn’t prepare for it.  it was on christmas morning which gave it a certain appeal.  this year i had a few friends (all who had done the 10k last year) who decided to run the chiang mai marathon – the 1/2 marathon version.  and they weren’t training for it.  sounded like a good enough idea.  so on december 2 i signed up.  i even got another friend to sign up.  this year it wasn’t on christmas morning.  it was 2 days before.  and that made it a little less charming.  but i put together a plan of action.  #1 – start wearing my running shoes.  i’ve spent the past year or so wearing barefoot style shoes.  and not running in them.  it seemed a good idea to get my feet and legs used to the shoes that i know i can run in – my two year old running shoes.  #2 create a play list.  all christmas music seemed a really good idea – peppy christmas music that would keep me smiling.  #3 create a t-shirt – because everyone knows any race is made better by a witty t-shirt.

witty t-shirts are often made better when the final product is carried out by a non-english speaker

witty t-shirts are often made better when the final product is carried out by a non-english speaker

#4 – battle plan.  i decided to break the race up into 5k’s.  i know i can run one of those.  so i thought i would run 3 of them.  something like – run 5k, walk 2.5k, run 5k, walk 2.5k, run until i cross the finish line.  i was feeling pretty well ready.  but then i listened to my play list.  and i recreated it.  with a healthy mix of christmas and non-christmas music.  but the misstep with the music made the doubt set in.  and take hold – a strangle hold.

race day came.  (turns out the mayans were wrong.)  a 5am start comes mighty early, but i got there on time.  even rode my bike.  (somewhere around 13k i started questioning that decision).  i actually got off to a good start.  was feeling good.  decided at 5k i was feeling so good i would just keep running.  that might have been a mistake.  because my knee started hurting.  and i had to stop.  but then i started again.  and i managed to get to the 10k marker faster than i expected.  that might have been another mistake.  at 13k i was done.  i had no idea how i was going to make it one more step.  but turns out the folks planning this race know about that kind of thing because there were watermelons and bananas and gatorade-y type drinks to reenergise the can’t move another step runner.  (prepared runners might be aware of this, but i’m not one of those.)  anyway, the race kept going.  and going.  and going.  when i got to the marker that said 2km i knew i was going to make it and i wasn’t sure i was going to make it.  but i did.

131c 131e  131f

in the second photo, where my fingers are pointing, that’s where i’m instructing her to leave the chip alone and just cut off everything from my hips down.  i was hurting – a lot.

michael showed up to see me finish.  i’m not sure how i’m smiling in this picture.  my legs were in so much pain just standing was almost unbearable.


my official finish time was 3:12:40.  not a scorching speed, but i finished.  and it was one my new year’s resolutions from last year.  which means i kept one of them.

the year i took my life back

AKA – my 40th year.

If – on my 4oth birthday –  you’d asked me what big changes I expected for the coming year I would have answered, “none.”  I had absolutely no intentions towards any big life changes.  I expected to turn 41, but beyond that I had no plans.  Maybe that’s a little sad and I guess it’s fair enough to say I was in a rut, but I’d settled into that rut and thought I was content to stay there.  Then, two months into the year, I figured out that I did want to change something.  I wanted to be strong.  I had no idea how I was going to get strong, but that’s what I wanted.  Then one morning I was having breakfast at the local diner – probably eating a cinnamon roll – and noticed a business card for CrossFit Chiang Mai.  It had the word strength on it and that was enough for me.  (I blogged about my start here.)

Walking into the CrossFit Chiang Mai box I had no idea what I was in for and how much I would love it!  And I certainly had no idea I would go from this…

to this…


Tomorrow I turn 41 and I’m feeling like I should set some goals.  I want to be realistic, you know, things I can actually accomplish.  But at the same time I don’t want to be limiting.  I’m pretty sure I never would have set the goals of lose 70+ pounds, dead lift my body weight, or run a 10k last year and I’ve managed each of them.  I’ve also gotten my CrossFit Level 1 cert.  There’s no way that could have been on my radar this time last year.

I’ve never been much of a goal setter and I’m finding the task challenging.  I’ve identified what I think are some easy goals – run a 1/2 marathon (do I dare set the goal of running a whole??), deadlift 1.5 times my body weight (too much to hope for?) and maintain my current body weight.  I’m going to keep working on my list.  I want to include things that aren’t just physical, like read a certain number of books. maintain this blog, and improve my thai, but I need to come up with quantifiable measurements for these things or I’ll never know if I’ve accomplished them.  I’m also trying to get away from thinking I’ve got to top last year – I’m not at all sure how I would even begin to do that.  40 was a good year, but here’s to turning 41.  Bring it on!

paleo – week one

i’m starting day 8 of paleo today.  yep, that means i’ve made it through 7 days of no grains, no legumes, no dairy, and limited fruit.  and i feel like crap.  they said that would happen.  i’ve got no energy.  they said that would happen.  i’ve got a headache.  they said that would happen.  but they also said some good stuff would happen.  and the good stuff is what i’m holding out for.  like high energy.  and magical powers.  (i made one of those up).

my body is supposed to be relearning to use fat instead of sugar as it’s fuel source.  but while it’s working on figuring out how to do that i get the fun that is low energy.  and it’s not all that fun.  i haven’t missed a day at crossfit, but the workouts of the day seem 10 times harder than they were last week.  and 8:00pm is beginning to look like a very appealing bed time.  if only i could go to bed then.

i’ve been asked if i think i can keep this up forever and ever and ever.  and i do think i can. i’m not hungry.  what i’m eating is satisfying.  and, after the 30 days are over, i’ll be adding dairy back into my diet.  i don’t think i have any issues with dairy, and i don’t normally consume a lot of it, so i’m more than okay with adding it back.  it also helps to know that after 30 days i don’t have to be so strict.  i can allow a cheat here and there.  and i have no doubt that i will.  but i think i’ll also be smart about those cheats – i’ll make it something i really, really want.

september 30th will be the last day of my 30 days.  i weighed myself and took my measurements on august 31.  i’ll do it again on october 1.  i don’t know that i’m brave enough to put the actual measurements on here, but i will definitely share any changes – or lack of changes – that there are.

i’ll go with plan a. or maybe plan b.

i’ve been on a get my butt in gear and get fit kick lately. i’ve drunk the crossfit koolaid and i’m addicted.  i’ve taken up running – even managed to enjoy it a time or two. i finished the c25k program a few months ago and have kept on going. and i’ve been working on an overhaul of the foods i put into my body. this week i’m starting a 30 day paleo challenge – i’m pretty sure this isn’t the last you’ll hear about it.

since i took up this venture into fitness i’ve lost more than a few pounds.  53.1 to be exact. i picked up a 24 kilogram kettlebell the other day (which is almost 53lbs) and was shocked at how heavy it was. and that i carried that much extra weight around on my body. it made a pretty good impression on me and, while i would like to lose more weight, it is no longer a focus for me.

which leaves me in need of a new goal. i’ve found what i think is a pretty good challenge.

i’m not thinking full marathon.  i’m leaning way more towards the half – i believe that’s the proper term for a 1/2 marathon. 13.1 miles to be run on christmas morning. a bit of a christmas miracle. and then a whole different opportunity presented itself.

the annapurna 100 this one is to be run/walked/jogged on new year’s day. on the annapurna trail. in nepal.  this race comes in 50k, 70km and 100km versions – version 50k (31 miles) seems a good fit for me.  there are logistics to work out.  money, flights, arrangements at home, etc, but it might fall in the category of opportunity not to be passed up.

it’s not decided which one i’ll do.  i’m planning on training for the half.  since that’s most sensible.  but i’m still considering the annapurna race as a viable option.  official registration doesn’t happen until december 31. of course, plans will need to be in the works well before then.  i do find the idea of new year’s day in nepal very exciting and a not too unattractive way to usher in 41 – which i will have turned 2 days before the race.