Sunday, January 27, 2013

Viva La Vivo

Better late than never.

I am more in love with my Vivobarefoot Neo shoes. Need a reminder?


They are holding up well. That gray edge around the blue is stitched down, and I think that's helping hold it together better than previous shoes. I've done both short and long runs in them and I'm still in love. They are very comfy. 

So! Long runs were good in these shoes. I did my last half marathon in them. I had a couple blisters on the tips of my toes, but not as many as I've had previously. My feet were tired, but not overly sore. I did get my black toenail back after the half marathon. Since then, I've tried one of those special lacing styles that's supposed to help pull the shoe up so it won't rub on the nail. Don't know if it's really doing any good yet. I did notice that I lace these suckers really tight. You almost can't see the tongue when I lace them up for a run. 

I've done a couple short runs without socks now as well. I can actually feel the arch of my left foot rub on the shoe, even hear it when I get sweaty, but it hasn't become a hot spot. That's with 3.5 miles, but maybe a longer run would turn into a hot spot. I think I can possibly fix that with the lacing. The outside of my pinky toes rub a bit, but again, it hasn't turned into a hot spot yet. This is the best sockless shoe I've tried. The seaming in the shoes is great and doesn't rub anywhere. 

The soles are wearing slowly and evenly. The uppers are just starting to show creases at my big joint, so they will definitely outlast the New Balance. I still love the simple look that isn't distracting if I wear them with jeans. Pretty much, of all the zerodrops I've tried, these are my favorite. They fit my foot well and don't irritate. 

I would love to try some other Vivo shoes, but as usual, the prices are high, and there is nothing near me that stocks them. Le sigh. 

Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Red Car

Here's a story for you today. I find it cute. J said I'm a dork, but we already knew that.

So, when Remy was just a puppy, I started walking him regularly. At first he could only make it around the block. It didn't take too long for him to be able to, and want to, go farther. I found a route for us that went around our neighborhood. We walk south down the street to the last street in the neighborhood. We take that street as it curves around back north, then we cut over and sort of zig zag back to the house. I mapped it out once and it's about 1.5 miles. When that wasn't enough, we stretched the route out farther, but always kept that first stretch.

Our morning walks were usually around the time that people were coming on post to go to work. Our first turn is right at a gate. I started noticing a red car that would drive past us. It's an older car, maybe from the 70s, but in good condition and obviously well taken care of. An older man drove it. He came in at the gate, turned on the street we walked on, and drove past us. We saw him often enough that we started waving at each other.

Then they closed that gate. No more red car. I noticed the red car a couple times in a parking lot on post. It's farther down on the same street we always saw him on. There are no other cars like it, so I know it's the same car. Unique paint job, but not in that horrid ghetto way, just a different shade of red and a trim on it that you don't see much of. Apparently, he works on post and takes a direct route with less traffic and no stop lights. Exactly what I would probably do.

Since that gate has been open regularly again, we've started seeing the red car again. We usually walk in the afternoons lately, so we see the car headed the opposite direction, heading home. He smiled when he saw us, so I knew he recognized Remy.

Yesterday as I walked Remy, we saw the red car on it's way home. He smiled and waved, I smiled and waved. That's all the interaction we've ever had, but it's nice. He brightens our day a bit, and I think we brighten his. 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Plague

It's everywhere.

A lot of people around me are getting sick now. Flu and flu-like things are taking them out of view and shutting them in their homes. I myself spent a couple days stuck at home with no appetite and an upset stomach. I wasn't nearly as bad as some others, but I was bad enough to reschedule my teeth cleaning that was supposed to be yesterday.

For me it started Saturday. At first I thought maybe I had eaten something that didn't agree with me. Come Sunday morning, when I made myself breakfast and couldn't eat it, I knew it was more than that. Duke, however, decided to try a bite of my breakfast while I was away from the plate for a few minutes. I had cheese on my eggs. He likes cheese.

Yesterday I felt a lot better and had an appetite. But I over did it a little. I ran some errands, just 3 stops, and it left me exhausted. I slept for an hour on the couch. Then I went to book club. I was feeling good. It was a special book club meeting this month. We got to join other book clubs to meet a local author at the German club. Well, I either ate too much or ate the wrong things. Maybe it was my one german beer. Woke up feeling not so good last night. Queasy. I went back to sleep, but woke up still not well.

Le sigh. I think I tried to do too much.

So, have I been getting sick a lot lately? Or does my husband just worry about me? I do feel like I have not been very healthy since he left. It can't just be that I wasn't eating as healthy, could it? Then my mind wanders to the skinny supplement. I started it just after J left, so is it making me get sick? How do I find out? Well, I could stop taking it for a while. See if I feel better.Then start again and see if I get icky again. Not sure I want to play around like that, though.

Or can I just say it's been a rough season for me? I was doing really good at the beginning of the month. I was running and started working out more. I was eating healthier. I felt really good. Then Saturday hit and I didn't feel good.

For now, I'm going to just keep moving forward. I'll slow myself down a bit this week and let myself really get over whatever I had. I will keep with the healthy eating and tracking my food and slowly get back into working out. I might restart the simplefit workout. I didn't make it past level 2, so it's no loss. I think I'm close to being in a maintenance phase anyway, and can stop the skinny. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

Oh Noes! A Gun Post!

With all this debate about guns, I'm getting ready to take a handgun class.

There's this group, don't know the name of it, that offers a women only handgun class. They keep the class small, about 12 women. They are offering this class to military wives for free right now. We just have to pay our range fee and bring our own ammo.

So I'm going with a few of my friends. I'm bringing my gun, and J's gun for a friend. She has her own handgun, but with all the debate over guns now,  people are buying up ammo and we couldn't find enough ammo in the right caliber for her gun.

Another of my friends is bringing her husband's gun. She has never handled guns before, and didn't want to handle them before she met her husband. Now, since there is a gun in her house, she wants to know how to handle it properly and safely. Have to say, I'm proud of her.

See, I grew up with guns. My dad had a dealer's license and would sell guns on the side while working full time. He mostly sold to family, friends, and coworkers. He was also known for finding good binoculars. Yeah. Dad is a hunter, a fisher, and a general outdoorsman.

I have memories of Dad helping me hold a .22 rifle and shooting. He taught us how to act around guns, how to handle guns, and how dangerous guns could be. Mom and Dad made all of us go through hunters' education. Now, hunters' education isn't just for people who want to hunt. It teaches gun safety, outdoor safety, and outdoor survival. Dad actually started teaching hunters' ed after I went through it. He has a hip holster rigged for fast draw. He would load his pistol with blanks, and start talking about holsters and drawing your gun. He would "accidentally" fire the weapon before he could remove it from the holster. It scared everyone, and got the point across - guns are not toys. With real bullets, he would have shot his foot.

My parents have a big fancy gun safe now, but when I was a kid, they had a gun cabinet. It was wood with a glass panel door. It locked, but I don't know if it was always locked. I think the key may have been kept on top of the cabinet. I don't know for sure, and honestly didn't care. If I wanted to go shooting, I would ask Mom and Dad and they would arrange to take me. I never thought it would be cool to show off Dad's guns. They weren't special or unique to me. They were just guns.

Yes, I said that. JUST. GUNS. They were inanimate objects. They just sat there.

I was taught that guns are dangerous in the wrong hands. I was taught how to be safe around guns. I was educated. I am educated. Guns are weapons, but not all weapons are inherently evil.

Now, I don't necessarily agree with everything my parents think or do. However, I do agree with them on guns. Dad made sure to follow all laws when selling guns, he made sure all his own guns were legal, and he taught us to follow and respect gun laws. He also taught us what to do with a gun. I think my lack of fear in guns came from something that simple - education.

Some people might try to argue that I've never known someone who was killed by a gun. They would be wrong. While it is true that I've never had someone I know murdered with a gun, I have experienced gun death. Ever see my ankle tattoo? Ever notice the B? That's Breanna. She broke into a gun store and shot herself. She knew enough to load a handgun with the correct ammo and turn it on herself. She did not try to use the handgun of someone she knew, she broke into a store and used one of theirs. There is much more to this story, but yes, I know someone who was killed by a gun.

Bre's death hit me hard, but I never once blamed the gun. I didn't blame the store owner. I didn't blame her parents. I didn't blame gun laws or a lack of gun laws. Bre would have found a way to kill herself no matter what the law said. I also believe that people who commit mass murder will find a way to do just that, no matter what the laws are. They are not thinking like a regular, law-abiding citizen, for whatever reason.

I believe education is a key element in lessening gun violence. And I, for one, will be continuing my gun education tomorrow, along with a group of women. We will learn how to safely care for our guns. We will learn to safely handle a weapon, which will greatly lessen the chance of any of us hurting someone with a gun. Well, unless that someone is trying to hurt us. As Malcolm Reynolds said, "Someone ever tries to kill you, you try to kill 'em right back!"

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

I'm A Lynx! Rawr!

Ok not really. But I have 2 tops from Lynx Sportswear that I would like to review for you.

First is the Sports bra. I ordered blue. Amber is very proud of me for not getting black.

not black!
Now the pics online showed black trim, and I got white, but I can live with it. They are measurement based, much like Enell. You get a number and a letter. The letters stand for their 3 size ranges, Sprint, Dart, and Zoom. My measurements had me in a 3, and kinda between Dart and Zoom. They actually contacted me (via email) on Christmas day after I placed my order and offered to send both a dart and a zoom for me to try on, with a pre-paid envelope to return the one that didn't fit. The Zoom went on well, but had some extra fabric in a few spots. It doesn't help that I have such a short torso! The Dart is a snug fit, but I prefer snug.

over the shoulder boulder holder view
At first I was worried that the band wasn't tight enough. Again, I prefer a snug fit. But I decided to not make snap judgments. The elastic has 3 loops in the back for some adjustment options. I set it on the loosest and made sure everything was adjusted in there. Then I tested. I jumped, I ran down the hallway, I sat, I stood, I wiggled. It actually felt rather secure. The band does roll up when I sit down, but I get that on all my bras and believe it's the short torso coming into play again.

ignore the weird look on my face. self-portrait curse.
I did a short run in this first. I was very conscious of the band at first, but by the first mile I was distracted and didn't think of it again. I don't notice the bounce, which means there is very little. The white on the front and back are a very fine-weave mesh that gives ventilation. This will be amazing when it warms up.

I also got their support tank. In black. Because they didn't have blue and I like black. This option does not have the Zoom sizing yet, but I'm sure it will happen. Basically, they took the bra and added an extension of the same fabric to cover your stomach. It covers the band and has a keyhole in back. Same clasp design in back. 

these are my snug jeans, hence a slight muffin-top
The fit is the same as the regular bra. Like I said, they just put an extension to cover your stomach. The stomach-cover could be a couple inches longer. I could see someone with a long torso having issue with this.  I, on the other hand, get some bunching in the back because of el short torso.

yeah, i'm short
I wore this under a cold weather top for a long run (10 miles). I will NOT be wearing these on cold days. I thought my nipples were going to have frostbite. (Just what you wanted to hear, no?) That is where the double-layer Enell comes in handy. As for support, I have no complaints. I didn't feel the need to adjust anything. And no, I didn't get frostbite on anything. I did have a couple small chafe spots right where the seams from the middle mesh panel are. I chafe in the Enell on long runs, too. Bodyglide take care of it.

yes, i'm sucking in the gut
I am happy with these. I am looking forward to wearing them this summer when the temperature rises. I will probably also be wearing them to yoga, especially in the summer. And maybe even to belly dance. The company had great customer service. It's a young company that is growing, and I look forward to seeing where it goes.

I know when I sports bra shop, I compare them to what I know, and what I know is Enell. So what makes these different from Enell? These tops are designed for an even larger size range. While Enell goes up to "DDD," Lynx goes up to G, H, I, even J. On the Enell size chart, my bust measurement is one size and my rib cage another. On the Lynx size chart, I fall into a 3 Zoom, but just barely. Knowing that, A.) I sometimes measure just a bit bigger than I fit (even with regular bras), B.) I was wearing a molded bra, which doesn't add much but does add the tiniest bit, and C.) I'm still losing weight, I figured the Dart would be a happier fit for me. I was right. 

I would love to see these carried in stores someday. I don't see them being at the big chain sports stores, but maybe the specialty running stores. Oh, just like buying my Enell! 

Finally, this is a real lynx. And a baby lynx, because adorbs.


**This entry is crossposted to the Bra Crusader.

Monday, January 14, 2013

I'm A Slacking Slacker

One post a week? Yeah, that seems to be what I'm doing so far this year. We need to work on that.

I had planned a few posts, but didn't get around to writing them. I have a full, long-distance run report in the new vivos (shoes) and a full report of both new sports bras. While I'm at it, I got a new cold weather running top I should do a small review on. But the time seems to just get away from me.

The past week felt pretty busy. I think it was more little things all the time than any big things. But I have a bunch of tomato soup to eat. I love this tomato soup. Kristy, if you want more, I put half of mine in the freezer. I have plenty. Maybe I should do a post about the soup. It became a favorite right away, and I've had some "fun" times making it. Yeah...

I might have to schedule in blogging time. Like, pick a couple mornings each week as blogging time, and write about whatever I haven't written about yet. Blah.

I also have a ton of cleaning to do. No one is allowed to come over until I get some cleaning done, unless you plan to help/motivate me to clean. It's mostly putting things away. Maybe I'll start by shopping for a bigger tote for all our christmas stuff. People gave us more this year. I need to go to Target anyway.

I've been meaning to start tracking my food again on myfitnesspal.com, and since I keep putting it off, I'm going to start today. If you want to find me there, I'm char362. I'm still taking my skinny supplement, but it stuck at 146. I honestly think it's because I've been eating junk. I got a harvest box, but still need to plan my meals better. It will be hard this week because I have 4 eating out dates, 2 of those in one day.

Oh, and Remy is on a diet now, too. Pup weighed in at 62 pounds at the vet's. He's not really eating more, so I think it's because he hasn't gotten as much exercise. I can still feel his ribs and hips bones, so he's not obese, but he's a bit of a chunk. Of course, since the vet said he's a big boy, he's been eating every meal and asking for seconds. Stinker.

Alright. Time to get my morning started. I'm eating my last 2 Gordon Ramsay blueberry muffins for breakfast. I should find a way to pinterest those. I'm sure someone has his recipe online. If not, maybe I'll blog it and pin it myself. Hmmmmmmmm.....

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Hey, It's 2013

Or "The Library" if you're triskaidekaphobic. Dr. Who references apply, because the Bloggess is a Whovian.

I realized it's been a week since I blogged. Thought I should catch you up on some things.

First, I didn't get my harvest box. Turns out they changed the cut-off time to Saturday, but I didn't read the whole email stating that (and apparently some others joined me in this), and nothing on the website told me that anything was different. I'm lucky enough to know one of the people in charge at my pick-up location, and she gave me some extras from the temple's box. I have my potatoes, a couple pairs, and a head of garlic. I also had a persimmon, which I ate, and it was tasty. The company deleted the faulty order to make sure I wasn't charged for it.

So I got my order in yesterday and WILL get a whole box this week. In the meantime, I have all I need for my vegetarian shepherd's pie, so I'm going to try to make that tonight. Fun note: at allrecipes.com, they have this feature that lets you change the number of servings a recipe will make, and it changes the ingredients list to match that. Because honestly, if I make enough shepherd's pie for 6 people, I'll be throwing some of it away.

After the box fiasco, it decided to snow. Like, real snow that I could actually make snowballs with. That is rare down here.

We went to the dog park to play in fresh snow.

That was Thursday. Today is Sunday. There is still some snow in the backyard, in the strip along the back fence that the sun never touches.

I did follow through with my first week of SimpleFit. On day 1, I'm alternating between jumping pull-ups and hanging from the bar for 3 seconds (with shoulder shrugs, because that's all I can do). Day 2 is more jumping than hanging, and day 3 is all jumping because it's for time. I am feeling "the burn" from it still. My push-ups are the girly knee kind, but again, I'm feeling it. Squats are easier than those for me, so I'm really focusing on keeping good form when I do those. My plan is to go through the levels like this for now, and see if I can eventually switch to real push-ups and maybe even do a real pull-up. I might start over at that point and focus on the real push-ups and pull-ups.

What else? I didn't run much this week. Monday, New Year's Eve, I was fighting off a migraine. I did take Remy for a walk that day. Wednesday was a good run, and Friday was freezing cold and icy. Today is also freezing cold, but I'm going to try to get out there later. Or I may give in and use a treadmill. The half marathon is next weekend.

Speaking of NYE, I spent it with fellow lonely wives. We all have deployed hubbies, so we all spent the evening with our smart phones handy to check email. We played card games, watched a movie, and ate and drank. Well, drank just a little. I was sober enough to drive home at 0230. I think Remy appreciated it.

Oh, Rembrandt. My moody little puppy. After Bosco went back home to his family, Remy got sad. And with my crazy hours on NYE, he's been extra moody this week. He will refuse breakfast, then want more at dinner. At this point, as long as he eats once a day, I'm not too worried. Although he has been really gassy the past 24 hours. Like super smelly. I'm hoping it's from him being too moody.

my emo dog

Anything else? I purchased my tickets for my annual Good Friday date. Making it a shorter trip than usual this year, because J would like to try to make a trip back out that way when he gets home. A couple boys from our Boy Scout Troop back in KS have just made Eagle. They both want J there, and J wants to be there. So of course that means I get to try to coordinate something. I figured I would save a little on my Easter trip since we'll try to be right back there, probably about a month later. Plus we have our June trip to CO.

That is everything that has happened in the past week. Busy busy. Time for breakfast.