Zen Organizing: TOLT

Cleaning and organizing is front and center this week, which is pretty funny because I don’t like to clean, and while I like things to be organized, they never seem to stay organized.

I didn’t think I was going to have much to Think Out Loud about this week, and then just a couple of days before this post suddenly a few ideas popped into my mind. They even actually stayed there until I could write them down.

I really do not like cleaning
That is all.

I would have made a terrible mother
My brother always says he thinks I would have made a great mother. Ha!

See #1. I don’t particularly like cleaning up after myself, but you know what’s even worse? Cleaning up after other people.

Don’t ask me why cleaning up after the animals doesn’t bother me. I mean, I’d rather not do that either, but I guess there’s something about the fact that they can’t do it and it needs to be done, so it doesn’t bother me the way cleaning up after humans does.


It’s all better now

I want to be that Zen person
I really do. You know, the one who lets little things like a phone repair shop taking three times as long as they said they would and after all that time not handing you back a fixed phone just roll off my back?


Well, no, I wasn’t zen about it. At all. I didn’t go all Dr. Jekyll on them, but I made my displeasure well known, well known to the other customers in the shop, and asked for a discount.

When I finally picked up the phone on Monday (yes, this time it got fixed), they said they gave me a discount due to the trouble, but as far as I can tell they billed me the full amount. I didn’t even bother to ask about it, I just wanted out of there as fast as humanly possible.

Why didn’t I just get a new phone?
As I was telling Karen @ Frenchinspiration, part of why I can afford to travel to halfs is that we live below our means in many ways. One of those ways is our cell phones. Heck, until a year and a half ago I didn’t even have a smart phone.

But Mr.Judy found us a plan that doesn’t require a contract, and you can adjust text, phone, and data (all separately) as needed on the fly. And you share the text, phone, and data. Most months we pay less than $30 for both of us.

Including taxes.

We are not power users, though. Clearly.

I wold tell you the name of the plan, only it’s no longer available. We are grandfathered in, for now, at least, but we were pretty sure that they were no longer activating new phones.

So yes, I paid roughly $80 to fix the screen on my phone, but we’ll make that money back quite quickly with our savings on our plan as opposed to finding a new plan and buying new phones.

No doubt someday we’ll have to move on and we’ll be paying more, but it’s nice not to have the pressure to do it right this minute.


I can actually see what I have

I became obsessed with Marie Kondo
Have you heard of Marie Kondo? I’ll admit my obsession is similar to my approach to Galloway: I haven’t read her book (although I’ve read some of Galloways), I’m not following everything, but I did become totally obsessed with her folding method a few weeks before I left for my half.


So there I was, with a million and one things to do, running around like a nut to all these different appointments, desperately trying to get someone to fix my phone before we left . . . . and obsessively folding all my clothes.

I’m still doing it, by the way. I have a lot of clothes. Far too many, no doubt. Having to hang at the mall for hours the last week didn’t help on that front, either.

But I’m beginning to be able to actually see what I have!

Before I was always hunting for — and sometimes not finding — my tees and tanks even when everything was in drawers and “neatly” folded. It still doesn’t look all that neat, but now I can actually find things!


Gizmo is still enjoyng the box


And speaking of cleaning . . .
I swear ever day Gizmo takes all the packing paper out of the box, and every day I’m putting all the wrapping paper back in the box.


Shh! We’re mediating


Calm is the new favorite
Ok, with all the traveling, packing, unpacking, cleaning, phone drama, half, etc., I don’t think it’s been a very calm May.

But I am digging the Calm app. It’s gotten me back into meditating. Although I can’t seem to go more than 5 days before I forget to do it, but sometime I double up on it — shouldn’t that count?

I think it’s a shame that every decent meditation app seems to require a yearly fee. Unless they’re adding all sorts of new stuff, why can’t I just pay a one time fee and be done with it? I still think this app was worth every penny, but some of the meditations are free so you can just stick with those, and at least you get to try them out before deciding whether or not you want to shell out money for the app.

I particularly like that there are a lot of different topics, and each topic has guided meditations in varying lengths, usually 2, 5, and 10 minutes. We all need a short break once in a while, right?

Do you meditate?

Have a favorite meditation app?

Have a good organizing tip?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

Traveling trials & must haves: TOLT

I’m Thinking Out Loud about travel today, because May will be/has been a month of traveling.

My running 13.1 tired her out

Mainely ticks
We spent a lot of our time pulling ticks off of Lola (and killing a few just crawling around) while we were in Maine. Apparently Maine is much more infested than New York and the rest of New England.

Because we have never had a tick problem with her, we had stopped using Frontline Plus in favor of a dust from the holistic vet. In fact, earlier this spring we pulled the first ticks I’ve ever seen on her (she subsequently tested negative for tick born diseases), but after religiously dusting her each week, she was fine.

Until Maine. We ended up paying at least twice as much as it normally costs to buy some Frontline Plus while we were there.

As soon as we left, we seem to have left the ticks behind. Which is not really true, but it felt that way. At least I haven’t seen any since we left.

I’m guessing that they were dog ticks, but I’m still a little confused on all that even though I’ve consulted Dr. Google (this link was somewhat helpful). Thankfully I happened to have some tweezers with me — they came in handy!

It’s amazing how many steps you can get in when you have a dog
Even when you’re not going on your normal walks. Because you can’t just open the door and let said dog out. So there I was, every morning around 5-6 am, walking Lola. Mind you, she’s usually still snug in bed with Mr. Judy at that hour at home.

And multiple times throughout the day.

Despite basically doing nothing other than walking her, I was still racking up about 8-10k steps a day just taking her out. Even on the days we were spending several hours in the car.

Good thing, I guess, cause like I said, I sure wasn’t getting any other activity in. No yoga. No bodyweight training. Just one easy run, one half marathon, and lots of dog walking.

Why is traveling so tiring?
I mean seriously. We go away to rest and then we come back and it feels like we’re more tired than when we left. We didn’t do that much this time — well, aside from my running a half marathon and Mr. Judy trying to eat all the lobster — which was one of the race signs, by the way — “Run now, Lobster later”.

We even stayed in Freeport, ME for a couple of days before the race. You know, the home of LL Bean and all the outlets? Would you believe that I didn’t even go shopping? It’s true. Aside from the mug and bracelet (notice the turtle) I bought in Kennebunkport, I didn’t buy a thing.

Just give me a mini fridge & microwave and I’m happy
Seriously. Better yet, a kitchen!

We stayed in one airbnb in Maine. It had a small kitchen. Which allowed me to just get some mayonaise and some lettuce and make a waldorf salad for myself one night (I brought the tuna and apples with me).

In fact, every place we stayed (three different places for a 5 night trip) had a mini fridge and microwave. This also allowed me to make my usual overnights oats for race day (and another batch for the day afterwards). I just made up a packet with the ingredients, brought along a small coconut milk carton, and a couple of mostly empty nut butter jars.

On race morning I could heat my overnight oats in the microwave, because I usually prefer to eat them warm — you know, because then the chocolate chips are all nice and melty.

What, your race day breakfast doesn’t involve chocolate? How sad.

And speaking of travel and food . . .
I actually brought my huge insulated bag we bought in Kauia. I think we bought it because we ran out of space and we had some chocolate with us. Of course we brought back chocolate.

I highly recommend the Kauia Chocolate Company, by the way, if you’re ever there — and the Opihi.

I had a variety of snacks in it (you never know what you’ll want after a half, and this time I remembered to bring some salty stuff with me, thank God, I needed it), bananas, Lola’s food, kongs and chews for Lola, a water and food bowl for Lola.

I organized it by using some of the small canvas bags we get (often at races or walks) so that at least everything wasn’t all jumbled together. Aside from not remembering what was in which bag, having different things in different bags was quite helpful.

Too bad we’re almost out of the races we can drive to.

My ME mug (notice the turtle on the bracelet)

It’s not just halfs . . .
I’m also trying to collect mugs from each state. Unfortunately I missed getting one in MD & RI — but then again, I have 2 from some states — like WA.

The only problem is I don’t have a lot of storage space. Any idea what to do with 50 (or 50+) mugs? I actually do use them!

Blogger meetup fails
I found out, after the fact, that not  one, but two bloggers I follow were actually pretty close to where we were in ME. I wish I’d known — I’m not sure we could have met up, but it would have been nice.

If you’re ever in upstate NY, let me know!

Why can’t I get him in there when I need to?


That darn cat
I have several crates out all the time. We’d leave treats for the cats in them before we had dogs. They liked their crates. They often napped in their crates. It wasn’t that hard to get them into a crate and to the vet.

As Gizmo has gotten older, he’s gotten wiser and more wary. It’s not so easy to get him into a crate when I need to now, but he still likes to nap in them.

It’s much easier to take him to the vet in this smaller one. Only he doesn’t like it as much as the huge one that’s more trouble — of course! He’s a cat and he’s good at it.

So wouldn’t you know just the other day I found him snoozing in it?

How do you deal with breakfast when you travel?

Anything you have to have where you stay when you travel?

Any foods that are a must have when you travel?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

It’s not a half without some drama: TOLT

I’m Thinking Out Loud about my halfs today. Probably because I have one coming up in just a few days.

I’d like to say I train well and then everything just goes smoothly on race day. There’s no stress in training or during the race.

And then I’d tell you I have this bridge to sell to you . . .

So let’s just review the drama that has accompanied a few of my halfs.

Las Vegas 2011
Las Vegas 2011 – after getting to right timing chip, of course!

RnR Vegas 2011
The half that started them all. No Garmin. Using a Nike+ footpod, I was somewhat under trained but didn’t really realize it. Discovered I had someone else’s chip when I went to put it on because I didn’t think to check the chip attached to my bib. It was colder in Vegas that night than back home in upstate New York. And it started to rain at the end — a cold rain. My very first night race, too!

Well, I did say it was the half that started them all. I had a blast running down the Vegas strip!

I imagined I was running through Paris

RnR Montreal 2012
Hmm, maybe it’s just RnR races? This was the one where something just wasn’t right with my cat Simba — we would come to find out not long after this race that he had lymphoma, and in about 2 months he was gone.

The day before we were scheduled to leave, I found out my father had a brain tumor — hopefully benign — that would require brain surgery. I wasn’t feeling well most of this weekend.

It was a PR at the time. And although we lost Simba, 4 years later my Dad is still with us.

Blackstone Valley
Blackstone Valley – well, the start was good

Blackstone Valley 2013
My training had gone great  . . . right up until the taper. When the knee pain started. Back then, I really didn’t know what to do, so I cut way back on my running and basically prayed for a good outcome. It may just have been the nicest weather I’ve ever had for a half, and it was my worst half ever — knee pain set in at mile 6 and I had to walk the last 3 miles. It would take months before I could run pain free again.

Thanks, honey — one of my favorite postrace photos!

Heartbreak Hill 2014
I worked so hard for this one. I felt so prepared. Despite being in June, the weeks leading up to the race had been lovely running weather in the 50s. Race day dawned at 72F and by the time I finished it was about 85. Needless to say, I was disappointed in my time, but I know I did the best I could.

It was the first race I ever taped for, despite the fact that my knees weren’t bothering me, and my body felt wonderful afterward! I was ready to walk back to our hotel but Mr. Judy was tired. He had to wait for me in that heat!

Gettysburg Mug
Gettysburg Mug

Gettysburg Blue-Gray Half 2014
Another one where pain set in in the taper. Again, I had to ease up on the running more than normal in my taper. Taping helped me get through the race without having to walk the last few miles, despite the knee pain that set in at mile 9 (it wasn’t my knees that were bothering me!), and I managed to finish within the time limit — just. Another abnormally warm day, but not as bad as Heartbreak Hill.

You learn something from every race
So there you have it, when training goes really well and there are’t any hiccups — the race doesn’t always go so well. I sometimes feel as though if there isn’t drama, I won’t have a good race!

That’s not true — Austin Livestrong 2012 was a great race; training went well, and the weather was just about perfect.

I’ve also had other disappointing races due to weather, but I’ve run races in less than perfect weather and had a great race, too.

This upcoming half? Like Heartbreak Hill, I’ve trained really well. I feel ready. But I don’t know what race day has in store for me, and my drama this time was dealing with nagging ankle pain and then getting sick the last peak week of my training.

It will be a hilly race. I’m always hopeful of a PR, but that will definitely depend on the weather, how much the RD lied (because it seems they always lie!), and how I feel on race day.

I wonder what I will learn from the Shipyard Maine Half?

What were your worst races?

What did you learn from it?

What were your best races?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

Gone to the dogs, and cats, and rabbits: TOLT

I’m Thinking Out Loud about animals today. Animals fascinate me; they always have. Sometimes I think I may have missed the boat — it never even occurred to me to become a vet when I was a kid. Except I don’t think that’s my calling; you have to deal with the humans (the good, the bad, the ugly); you have to deal with the not so nice animals; you have to put animals to sleep without becoming a blubbering mess yourself.

Prepare yourself for cuteness.

Nothing to do with the post, just a cute Lola pic

Lola & the M&M
Mr. Judy got a shipment that included M&Ms and apparently that particular bag burst in transit (he takes them to work). He assured me that no M&Ms escaped the box.

Keep in mind that on more than one occasion, Mr.Judy has had chocolate in his work backpack and Lola has gotten a hold of said chocolate. Yes, honey, I am throwing you under the bus with this one.

What did I spy with my little eye later? A single M&M on the floor, indeed.

I was quite shocked that Lola hadn’t scarfed it up. Chester certainly would have!

Make up your mind
Lola does not like getting her feet wet. She doesn’t like to walk in the rain or when the road is slushy.

So explain to me why she always seems to deliberately seek out the tallest tuft of grass in the backyard to pee on?

10 year rabbit cycle
This week I spotted the first rabbit I’ve seen in a while during Lola’s morning walk. I know Mr. Judy had been talking about a rabbit in the backyard lately but I hadn’t seen it yet.

When we first moved here, rabbits were everywhere. Not so good when you have rabbit poop loving dogs. I didn’t know I signed up to scoop rabbit poop when I got dogs!

Then they seemed to disappear. And then a friend mentioned that they die off every so often. And yes, apparently, that’s true (at least the Internet said so): Truth to the 10 Year Rabbit Cycle?

101 Things to do with a box
I’ll bet you never heard of 101 Things to Do With a Box. Gizmo certainly has!

The gist of it is one way to get animals used to the clicker is to put down a box, and click and treat any way they interact with the box (even starting with just looking at it).

Way back in the day we did this with Gizmo. And thus was born his love of playing with a box flap. We call it his OCD behavior.

Above he took it up a notch and got into the box and started playing with the flap (usually he plays with it from outside the box).

I knew he’d fall for the tissue paper

Then I put in some paper from another package into the box. Yesterday morning there was packing paper all over the floor — I knew he was going to get into that! Does he look the least bit guilty or like the cat that ate the cream?

Lola wears a bra
I have this all-in-one step in leash/harness. We bought it years ago, before we got Lola; we used it with Chester. And we haven’t used it in all those years because we had two dogs and a double leash.

Lately I’ve been using it with Lola. It’s lightweight, and it cuts out one step (you don’t have to put on the harness and then attach the leash; feel free to insert an eye roll here).

The only problem is she hates getting into it. I don’t know why. She’s fine once it’s on, but she’ll circle away from you the minute you come at her with it. She’s not like that with her harness (although there’s still some circling, just towards you).

I showed the harness to Mr. Judy, who’d forgotten all about it, and mentioned how she hated getting into it. He said “it’s like an underwire bra for her”.


What odd behaviors do your kids/furkids entertain you with?

Do you ever think about what career you should have pursued?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

A Failure as a Girl Scout: TOLT

That moment when you think you got a head start on something and you realize you really didn’t? That’s just one thing I’m Thinking Out Loud about today.

The title refers to a Girl Scout and always being prepared — clearly, I am not! Although I was a Girl Scout. Right up into High School.

Blogger was really bugging me
I kept writing comments, pushing post, and then I’d get an error page that told me to reload. And of course my comment had gone up to the big comment hole in the cloud. This was happening on multiple blogs.

I took to copying my comment before hitting post in precaution.

Of course it stopped happening.

And could someone please explain to me how to get my avatar to show up on blogger sites? I’m signed up with Gravatar, but it doesn’t seem to work with Blogger, although as far as I can tell it works with everything else.

I thought I gave myself enough time
I’ve started the process of gathering up everything I need for my next half. Not clothes, because I won’t have any clue of weather until we’re a lot closer (and probably not even then), but food, supplements (for me & Lola, because we’re bringing Lola with us — her second half!), any running gear I don’t need between now and then.

That moment when I realized that we’re actually taking a bit of vacation time before the half . . .

I’m still feeling calm about getting ready, but we’ll talk again next week. I’m always calm about it . . . until I’m not.

I can definitely dream about this!


Color me happy
Another part of my preparation for my half is researching restaurants. We’re staying in a relatively small town close to the half, and Maine is known for its lobsters, lobster rolls, and fried everything beach food.

So I was very happy to find a sushi restaurant that got decent reviews right in our little town. Sushi is my preferred pre long run/race meal. It’s fueled a lot of long runs and races!


Usually I’m in workout clothes or pjs

Speaking of color . . .
Cute outfit of the week! Yes, I was in a dressing room at the time, but this was what I was wearing that day and I just thought I’d share (none of it was new, either!). It was an oddly neutral outfit for me –not an odd outfit, mind you, but I like to wear color usually.

So you’ve probably heard that stripes are not your friends. The truth is that’s not always the case. Since these stripes go in a lot of different directions, they’re very flattering. Vertical and diagonal stripes can be very flattering, too: it all depends on the angle.

Horizontal stripes? Rarely flattering, but there are exceptions, again, it’s all about the placement.

I so rarely wear heels anymore, but I needed a bit of heel to pull off the midi skirt without looking like a little person. Those shoes are really comfortable, though! And the nude color helps make my legs look longer.

And finally a faux leather moto style jacket to give the outfit a little edge.


Giz loving the extra daylight

Is a quiet house unsafe?
We lost our guard dog when we lost Chester. Seriously, Lola will bark if she hears another dog, or she’ll growl a bit when she sees another dog on our walks.

Inside? She almost never barks. Twice in the last week I forgot something and had to come back in after leaving. Not a peep. In fact, she never came out of the bedroom where she was busy demolishing her kong to even see just who had come into the house!

Chester took his guard dog duties very seriously. Heck, he always barked when we left or came home! Lola is always waiting for us when we come home, and she might whine to let us know she was lonely, but there’s no barking.

That’s a good and a bad thing.

I didn’t take any photos of her this week, so I gave you Gizmo enjoying his heated bed instead.


What’s your favorite pre long run/race meal?

Is your dog a good guard dog?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

I’m a lucky girl: TOLT

I’m Thinking Out Loud about all the good things in my life. It’s all in your perspective. I was sitting here working on the computer yesterday when snap! The lights (and computer) went off.

Which just reminded me of all the ways I’m so very lucky:

  • We have a generator. It doesn’t power the whole house, but I could still work on the computer and heat up my lunch.
  • I had already done the exercise DVDs I wanted to — because the DVD player is not powered by the generator (or the tv in our living room, either).
  • I didn’t have to go anywhere, so I didn’t have to unhook the garage door opener.
  • I had already done the bed linens, so at least I didn’t have wet laundry sitting in the dryer (although I had planned to do some more laundry).
  • It wasn’t a cold day, although the generator does power the heat anyway.
  • And let’s not forget the fact that I have electrcity 24/7 most of the year, enough to eat, my health, and so on.

Moving on to the rest of my TOLT.

Sitting is damn tiring
I wrote about being energetic yesterday, but Saturday we drove down to the Culinary Institute of America for my Dad’s birthday lunch, and basically the rest of the day was spent sitting.

So glad I got in an easy run the next day before the next round of sitting began!

It’s nice to run without . . .
Using up a roll of tape every time I run! Okay, that’s an exaggeration, but I was going through lots of tape there for a while. Now I only tape my left IT band for a double digit run or a very hilly run, and even that hasn’t been bothering me since my sports massage.

Queen Procrastinator
Passover starts tomorrow night. We don’t get together with anyone. My mom asked if we wanted to come down, as it does fall on a weekend this year, and if we hadn’t just been there, I probably would have said yes.

I asked her if she’d rather see us for Passover or Mother’s Day. She chose Mother’s Day; good thing, too, as Passover would have messed up Mr. Judy’s plans for this weekend.

So, we don’t get together with anyone. We don’t have a seder, although we do keep to the spirit of the holiday: no bread, pasta, or popcorn. But we always go out for sushi, which is technically not kosher for Passover unless you’re Sephardic Jews, which we aren’t.

As I said, we keep to the spirit of the holiday!

I spent yesterday morning perusing Pinterest for healthy Passover recipes; hence the procrastination. There are a few I’m considering making. Doesn’t that lemon ricotta matzo brei sound divine? It’s going to fuel my long run Saturday.

Since I eat gluten free a lot, and sometimes Paleo, it actually isn’t too hard to come up with things to make. I never find it as hard as a lot of people make it out to be, but that might just be because I bend the rules a wee bit.


Nice day for a walk

We found the sunshine this week
Finally! Last weekend was gorgeous. We even had several warm days this week — almost warm enough to turn AC on (our house is a raised ranch, and our upper floor, where our bedroom is, heats up fast).

Lola & I walked 2 1/2 miles at the park on Monday. Pretty good for a 10 lb, 10 year old dog!

But I did it again . . .
When I got to the park, I saw two women running. One looked like my friend Jan. Since they were running, and I wasn’t sure, I didn’t wave or call out hello.

When we got home Jan messaged me and asked if I’d been wearing a big hat and walking Lola.

. . . and again . . .
Senior moment, that is.

This week’s: I was in a rush to get out one morning and I started to put sunscreen on my lips! It’s a solid sunscreen, so it’s kind of like a big lip balm. But yuck!

I know it’s a good idea to protect your lips, too, but trust me — that wasn’t the way to do it.

Ending with Giz cause he’s cute

Gizmo loves his beds
Although Lola is quickly taking over this bed. And I had to get a new one because after months, Lola decided she wanted to chew on the bed we had there. She’s already taking over the new one, but so far, anyway, knock on wood, she’s not eating it.

Do your furkids chew on weird stuff? 

Does your power randomly go off?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud
Earth Day
I’m also linking up with the Thursday Throwdown, with Tamieka @ Fit Balling Running Mom, Sarah @ Cardigan Sarah, and Lex at Flecks of Lex and today we’re talking about Earth Day, which is tomorrow.


I’ll be honest: I don’t really pay much attention to Earth Day, but I do try to be kind to the planet every day, despite the fact that I don’t have kids so when I’m gone, I’m gone — but I think everyone has an obligation to do their part in taking care of the Earth — we’ve only got one!

I’m not perfect, but here are a few things I do:

  • Bring my own bags to the grocery stores. I started doing that way back when I lived in VT, long before it was cool and trendy. It just seemed like the right thing to do.
  • Reuse plastic bags for veggies, or bring my own reusable mesh bags. Unfortunately I don’t have a whole lot of reusable mesh bags — I really need to remember to buy more — but I don’t just recycle fruit/veggie bags after one use — you can get a lot of use out of them.
  • Drink filtered tap water. Which cuts down on the whole plastic water bottle problem.
  • Clean my floors with steam or plain water with lemon juice.
  • Use only one mug for my multiple cups of tea a day. I just rinse it out between cups of tea, and only put it in the dishwasher at the end of the day.

Do you ever do anything special for Earth Day?

Forget downward “dog” . . . : TOLT

. . . .cats are good at yoga too — especially savasana!

I’m Thinking Out Loud about truly random things this thursday: writer’s block, eyebrows, weight management, oh my!

Creating the perfect eyebrow
Ok, I don’t know how to do that, you got me. But I did read this tip this week and wanted to share it. If you use an eyebrow pencil to fill in your brows — I do, by the way; I may have been gifted with full brows, but they look better with a little filling in — start at the arch and then work your way out towards your nose, rather than starting at your nose and just working out towards your hair.

The reason is our first strokes tend to be heavy, and that can look harsh no matter how much smudging you do. And I have definitely run into that! This tip works really well.

Not having a doctor’s note is a good thing
I know I whine a lot about how difficult it is to maintain my weight at just 2 pounds above my goal weight.

Weight Watchers actually does let you get a note from your doctor to adjust your goal weight. I have some friends who have done this. I haven’t simply because I don’t have a primary care doctor. Yes, the girl who sees a chiropractor, physical therapist, and massage therapist doesn’t have a primary care doctor. But I do have a ob/gyn. Well, I went once, anyway.

Don’t judge.

I realized one day, though, that striving to stay within 2 pounds of my goal weight helps me to try harder. To not let 2 pounds become 5, 5 become 10, and so on.

Life isn’t meant to be easy, folks. The hard is what makes it good.

Blogging controls mindless eating
Did you know you could use blogging to distract yourself from eating?

Works for me, anyway. I don’t eat while I’m on the computer. And I find reading, commenting on, and writing blogs makes me forget that I’m hungry.

It was probably just boredom, anyway.


Where’s the friggin’ sun already?

Writer’s block . . . 
Can be solved by taking an exercise break.

Okay, I wasn’t actually blocked, but I’d only partially written yesterday’s post when I left to take Lola to the park.

When I cam back, the words just flowed.

There is really quite a lot of science about how our brains continue to work on a problem when we take a break and do something else. Why else do you get your best ideas in the shower or on the run?



My fellow yogi Gizmo
I’ve written about it before, but Gizmo likes to help out with my yoga. I finally remembered to bring my ipod down with me one morning and sure enough when I did savasana at the end, he was doing his own savasana right on top of me and I got it.

I’m still losing my mind
My senior moment for this week: I got Lola into the car to take her to the park and run a few errands. Then I realized I’d forgotten the library books I meant to return and went back up to get them.

I’m sure you guessed that I’d already put them in the trunk so I wouldn’t have to worry about carrying them while carrying her out to the car (I don’t like her to think she can just wander into the garage, especially since Mr. Judy goes in and out of it a lot and sometimes forgets to close the door).

Do you use something to distract yourself from eating?

Have you had a senior moment recently?

How do you get the creative juices flowing?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

At least the days are getting longer: TOLT

I’m Thinking Out Loud about how the days are getting longer, and I’m slowly getting my energy back. I like to joke that I’m solar powered. Sure, the weather has mostly sucked lately, but it’s not really all that unusual for these parts. And sure, I’m as ready for Spring as the next runner.

Sometimes you really just do have to find that silver lining.

I keep losing stuff
First it was the house keys. For days. Turns out they were in my pocketbook.

Next it was my Garmin! I don’t think I’ve lost my Garmin before. I was pretty sure it was in the bedroom — that I’d taken it off while changing clothes after my second run of the day  (see below)– but despite looking there more than once, I couldn’t find it.

Until I did. It had blended with the black tights from one of my running tights (clean, by the way, just not put away yet). Hiding in plain sight and depriving me of several thousand steps because I walked Lola without it on.

The horrors!

TM outfit on left, Walking outfit on right (because I forgot my runfie — all the white? That’s snow!)

A Tale of Two Runs
Tuesday dawned beautiful — but cold, so very cold. In the teens. I even had to put a sweater on Lola the night before. I wanted to do 6 miles, but I seriously couldn’t face it at those temps. Not to mention the ice from melting/freezing overnight. It’s April, for goodness sakes, we should be enjoying the daffodils, not freezing our booties off.

I also couldn’t face 6 miles on the treadmill. So I decided to break it into two runs. And I didn’t tape my ankle, by the way. But I was psyched to finally try out my Skirtsports gym girl ultra in psyched — even if I wasn’t psyched about the reason (use code CRJ20 for 20% off regularly priced items)!

I did 3 1/2 miles on the treadmill in the morning. Did my PT stretches afterwards, and all was good.

It warmed up enough during the day that I could see the refreeze had melted, so I finished up my 2 1/2 miles outside. It was fairly calm and very sunny, so it was actually pretty comfortable (with a long sleeve tech shirt, a running sweatshirt, and a medium weight jacket on).

I am happy to say that when I woke up Wednesday my ankle felt fine!

To tape or not to tape for 10 miles this weekend?

I love this hat; bought it decades ago in NM or AZ?

Us runners clean up good
I ran into a friend at the park last week. She was going for a run. I thought it was her, but wasn’t sure, and when she didn’t appear to recognize me I walked on by.

She came over when I got to my car and said hi. She hadn’t recognized me in my leather cowboy hat (although I did have Lola with me) and I almost didn’t recognize her in her running clothes.

Which is very weird since we’ve run a few races together!

How do you rest?
So last Sunday I ran a 5 mile race. Then 5 more miles afterwards. Does it count as a double digit run if it’s split into two runs? It’s my first double digit run since last October’s half.

So Saturday was a rest day. Except I spent most of it on my feet, making some chocolate almond butter protein balls and protein almond butter cups. Because apparently that’s how I rest.

At least the treats were good and the race went well!

Giving me the stare

Did you know staring is a sign of aggression in dogs?
Someone forgot to tell Lola because she loves to stare you down. And yes, she has hazel eyes like mama: only hers are brown and blue, and mine are brown and green.

Apparently Giz didn’t do anything photogenic this week.

Spring cleaning
I’m throwing in this last little bit to share the new linkup, the Thursday Throwdown, with Tamieka @ Fit Balling Running Mom, Sarah @ Cardigan Sarah, and Lex at Flecks of Lex.


It’s kind of hard to think about spring right now considering that there’s snow on the ground. And yes, my house is in desperate need of a good spring cleaning. Actually, it’s just in need of cleaning in general.

Right now I’m at the peak of my half training; just a few more long runs. I always wonder how that happens — it always just seems to sneak up on me!


I’m still working hard to drop those last few pounds, still working on getting the chocolate out of CRJ — not completely, of course, I still do enjoy chocolate on a pretty regular basis. When I’m tempted to eat something that doesn’t really move me towards my goal, I remind myself how good my clothes feel right now — those few extra pounds can make a big difference.

I read this in an article somewhere recently, and it stuck with me: let your meal fuel what you’re doing next. So if you’re going for a run, you want more carbs. If you’re sitting on the couch watching tv, you want less carbs & fats, and maybe more protein to help rebuild muscles from your last run and to help you feel full longer.

Do you ever think about what you’re going to doing next when you eat?

I’m also linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

Battling el Nino: TOLT

I’m Thinking Out Loud pretty much totally randomly this week: wondering why I only saw 2 geese, why I hate repetitive tasks but will do the same workouts, and, of course, sharing furkid photos. Kind of a quiet week in CRJ land this week — except for the wind! Holy Moly! Did you have to run in that crazy wind?

I did. Not once, not twice, but for all three runs this week!

New blog name
Well, no, I’m actually not changing the name of the blog. Although I did think of part of a new one that I really wish I’d thought of before I started the blog! If I ever do decide to change the name, at least I have a fallback.

And no, not gonna say what it is, because then someone will snap it up. Not you fine people, of course, but someone.

Just 2 geese?
The other day I was out walking Lola and I saw just 2 geese flying.

It seemed strange to me. So I googled “2 geese”, naturally, and found out that:

Geese fly in V formation. The flapping of wings of one goose creates an uplift for the goose immediately following. Flying in V formation adds at least 71% greater flying range, than if each goose flew alone. When the goose in front gets tired, another goose will take over the front position. Geese will honk to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.


Geese have strong affections for others in their group. If a goose gets sick or is wounded, a couple of other geese may drop out of formation to help and protect him. They will try to stay with the disabled goose until he dies or is able to fly again. They will then either fly together or join another formation to catch up with their group.

From this web post. There’s a lot more information there, too!

Just don’t make me repeat myself
I don’t like to repeat myself and I don’t like repetitive tasks.

Yet I’ll work out to the same DVDs over and over and over again.

I’m complicated.

Have you heard of WIAW (what I ate Wednesday)?

So yesterday I was planning to do one — that is take pictures of what I was eating all day to share next week. Except I woke up a little late, and I totally forgot to take a photo of breakfast.

So I moved on to a day in the life, because I enjoyed a post on someone’s blog — I’m sorry, I don’t remember which one — if it’s you please comment! I really have to take better notes somehow.

So yesterday I was jotting down everything I was doing. I might share it Monday.

I’m queen of all I survey

Weekly cute photo of Lola. She was subjected to the dreaded bloodwork (annual) and fasting; she was such a good girl about not getting breakfast until 10 am! And the vet said her bloodwork was perfect.

Just me & my shadow

Gizmo will do tricks for treats
My husband noticed how cool Giz looked with his shadow, so I grabbed the Ipod.

Do your furkids do tricks? 

Ever wanted to change your blog name? Ever actually changed your blog name?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

If you could turn back time . . .: TOLT

. . . .would you?

I’m Thinking Out Loud about going back in time, although there’s always a tradeoff, isn’t there? So many things in my life I love right now would not have been in my life back then. I’ve always been fascinated by time travel: I love the tv show “Quantum Leap” and “The Time Traveler’s Wife” is one of my favorite books (too bad the movie was rather disappointing).

That is how many emails it takes to put me over my mailbox limit. At one time I think I had it cleaned out to maybe 100. Sigh.

Apparently cleaning my home isn’t the only thing I don’t like to do.

Careful what you say
Just last week my husband asked me if I was still happy with my 16 yr old car. It has less than 60,000 miles on it and it runs great, so the answer was yes.

In fact, I bragged about it at my Weight Watchers meeting the next day.

The check engine light came on as I headed home that day.

Thankfully not something serious and my husband was able to reset it (did you know there are readers for those warning lights that give you the ability to reset them?).


The real deals

And Speaking of Clothes . . .
Yup, after sharing my one sale purchase from The Gap last week, I went in search of that dress at the other Gap. I didn’t find it.

But I didn’t walk away empty handed.

In fact, the sweater on the right cost me $2.50 and the coat on the left cost me $15. Every Mr. Judy was impressed.

Of course he said a real deal would have been if they paid me to take the clothes off their hands.

My big boy, Simba (also known as PITA)

If I could turn back time
I really am a big fan of trying to live in the moment.

Yet I found myself wishing Monday that I could go back in time 9 years — to a time when all four of our animals were still with us and still healthy. I just miss them.

You made me laugh, Buddy (Chester)

But if I went back in time, I wouldn’t be a runner, I wouldn’t have run halfs in 9 states (and one other country), I wouldn’t have made some of the awesome friends I’ve made since I started running and blogging.

Best running blogs
Seriously, I have no earthly clue how I made the list of 100 Best Running Blogs, which includes some blogs I’ve been following for years, long before I ever started to blog. But thank you!

There are many great running blogs on this list, and I’m not just saying that because I made the list — as I said, some I have been reading for years. So if you’re looking for some new blogs to read, you might check some of these out.


An odd find

Getting lucky?
I never find money on the run. Never. I think I’m just too unobservant.

Darlene and Barbara spotted at nickel on the ground at the Celebrate Life Half. Yet I was the one who picked it up.

Then just a few days later I found this quarter in this box of Brooks (which I did not buy, by the way).

You know, they say things run in threes . . . maybe I ought to buy a lotto ticket?

Hiding away from the world

Gizmo is a very determined cat
He’s really a sweetheart, but when he wants something, he goes after it. He has to climb over the mountain of old running shoes, the couple of boxes of out of season clothes, and the in-rotation running shoes to get at his crate we keep in the bedroom.

Now if only he would cooperate like that when it’s time to go to the vet.

Going through her paces
Whenever I take Lola to the vet, we go through some training. She gets treats, so she has a somewhat good association with the vet. The little video above was taken from our last vet visit.

Chester always knew training was coming when we got into the room, so he’d just start offering tricks. Lola is usually too busy sniffing around for errant treats. But she’s happy to perform for treats.

How much money have you found on the run?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud