Next Up – Tinker Bell Half Marathon

tbhmw2016_bannerNext up on the race calendar is the Tinker Bell Half Marathon.   I haven’t run this race since the inaugural year, so I’m looking forward to going back for the 5th anniversary to see how much it has changed.  I’m also excited to go back to Disneyland.  It’s been a few years, and I always love visiting.  Even when crowded, it always feels so much less hectic than a trip down to Walt Disney World.

In terms of the race, I’m feeling relatively unprepared.  I mean, I’m fairly sure I’m trained well enough, though let’s be honest, anything can happen.  I’m not in any danger of getting swept or anything, but I’ve been focusing so much on my biking that I forget that I’ve got a running race on the schedule.

This is the last runDisney race on my schedule for a while.  I’ve definitely gotten a bit burnt out by the the cost and the attitudes.  My worst experiences have been at Princess, so I’m hoping this women’s themed race doesn’t have the negative presence that I’ve seen there.

I think the biggest problem is that these have gone from running events to… marketing events?  Social events?   Experiential events?  I don’t know what to call them.  But the racing is no longer the draw, and that feels weird.  I like a good race experience as much as the next person, but it’s the actual race that is the draw, not the surrounding experience.  I actually want to run.  I don’t think everyone who signs up for these races feels that way.

Either way, next up, it’s off to California (which is stupidly far from DC, so it’s going to be a lot of traveling).  Here’s hoping it’s somewhat of a relaxing trip and that I don’t end up on the phone with the office half the time!

Cooking for One

Cooking for one person isn’t a lot of fun.

Unless you really like cooking, I suppose.  Which I do not.  I don’t hate it, but it’s not something I’m going to do just for fun.

And let’s not even talk about the “fun” of cleaning up the kitchen.

Still, I’m trying to make my diet more well rounded and less “grilled chicken breast, steamed veggies in the microwave, baked sweet potato.”  Which is pretty much my default meal.  It’s nutritionally sound, I suppose, but oh so very boring.

I’ve been getting a Blue Apron box every other week for the past few weeks, which has been working out well.  The two person box means that I get at least six meals out of every box, sometimes more, depending on how big the servings are.  And the food is pretty good, though I probably should be bulking it up with more veggies.   That would allow me to stretch the meals even further, now that I think about it.


This is what happens when I forget to bring a real fork to work and end up having to use the child’s fork I keep at my desk. Why I don’t keep a real fork at my desk, I do not know

Because I workout after work, I’ve discovered that the best way for me to plan my meals is to have my biggest meal after lunch.  After a hard workout, the last thing I want to do is eat a big meal, so I often have a green smoothie with some toast or cottage cheese or something along those lines.

So on the evenings that I have a lighter workout, I’m often cooking and packaging up meals for lunch for the next two days.  The other option is bigger batch cooking on the weekends, which does happen, but then I end up freezing things, and not everything I’m cooking does well after having been in the freezer.  When I’m really on my game, I batch cook some soups or stews and freeze them in individual portions so that when I run out of time, I can just grab something for lunch that day.

But lately, I’ve just been eating out on those days.  Thankfully, I have a lot of great healthy options in the area, but it’s not been great for my wallet, that’s for sure.

I’m always looking for tips on the best way to handle cooking for one person and how others handle eating healthy while not eating the same thing every day all the time.  Services like Blue Apron certainly help (and I’ll likely try out Hello Fresh again in the next few months – I used them early in their existence and it was terrible).  What works best for you?


Wednesday Workout Recap

Unsplash / Pixabay

Unsplash / Pixabay

Another week, another workout recap.

Monday – Rest Day

Tuesday – Hard hour on the trainer followed by a 1 mile run through the neighborhood.  My neighborhood is hillier than I realized.

Wednesday – Four mile run followed by a strength workout

Thursday – Team Fight swim.  Sprints!  So much swimming, but it felt pretty good because it was self timed rather than group timed. I appreciate being able to push myself rather than just feeling slow because I can’t keep up with everyone.

Friday – Easy 45 minute bike

Saturday – Went out for a 12 mile run but I had totally dead legs for no apparent reason.  After three miles, nothing was changing, so I gave up and opted for rest.

Sunday – 21 mile ride around the Booty Loop to get practice in aero.


Cyber Bullying

Pixies / Pixabay

Over the past week, our local news has been covering the case of a missing 31-year-old female firefighter named Nicole Mittendorff.  She was also a local triathlete, so the triathlon community was also following the story and offering support.

Her body was found in a local park, and while the press hasn’t shared details (and rightfully so), they have released that a suicide note was found in her car.

Terribly sad that such a lovely young woman found herself in such an awful situation.  But we can never know what another person is going through.

And then more information came out.  She was apparently the victim of cyberbullies, people claiming to be her fellow firefighters.

Now, it’s unclear whether this led to her suicide, but it certainly can’t have helped.  The information posted has been called “raunchy,” “lurid,” “sexist,” and “offensive.”  Apparently some of the postings contained her locker combination and discussions of what was found in her locker.

Obviously, this bullying wasn’t all done online – I’m sure some of it was also in person, and it’s an unfortunate situation that women in firehouses find themselves in all too often.

But it always surprises me how much hatred people are willing to spew on the internet.  There are entire blogs out there devoted to hate speech about a person.  Now, I don’t mean those sites that are out there trying to counter what someone is trying to say.  (Anti Dr. Oz sites come to mind, for example.)   But there’s a difference between saying “Joe is wrong, and here are some facts to show you why” and “Joe is a moron.  And ugly.”

Maybe it has to do with the general anonymity of the internet.  After all, you can make an account on many sites without ever having to share your name or email address.  Of course, people are just as happy to spew hatred on Facebook, which is linked to their real names.

Will the people who bullied Nicole ever be caught?  Who knows, and at the end of the day, it won’t change anything for her.  And obviously nothing I say is going to convince a cyber bully to stop his or her actions.  But it’s an interesting time we find ourselves in, and is there anything we can do to change it?

“Stolen” water at the London Marathon?

We’ve all heard stories of people going a bit crazy after a race and loading their arms up with the “free” post-race food that’s supposed to be for the runners.  I’ve seen people walking away with boxes of muffins or bagels, and if there’s donuts, it’s pretty much an impossibility that there will be any left for the last runners.

And of course, it’s not just the runners who do it.  Spectators are just as guilty, and let’s call it what it is – it’s theft.  After your race, you get one of everything that the race is handing out.  If the nice volunteer tells you “Hey, we have a TON of bananas, and you’re near the end, so take an extra one if you want,” by all means, go for it.  You say your kid is there with you and didn’t run but wants a post race cookie?  Well that’s fine, the kid can totally have a post race cookie – if you give him yours.  Okay, maybe you can have a cookie if there are a ton left.

A story that made the rounds yesterday was about how a “mob” of people stole water from the runners during the London Marathon.  Allegedly, it happened right after the elites came through and suddenly people showed up loading up carts and bags with case upon case of water.

What?!  That is ridiculous!

But let’s do a little more research.  This story all came out thanks to a video.

In this video, you can see thousands of water bottles along the side of the road.  Those aren’t from the elites.

And if you see the runners coming past, well, they are few and far between.  And those certainly aren’t the runners right behind the elites.

Finally, the guy filming says something about how “the last coach has come past so the marathon runners are on their own,” and you can see a bus in the background, which I interpret to mean that we’re down to stragglers.

So… were these people supposed to be taking water?  It seems entirely possible that they were told by a volunteer that the leftovers were available.  Did it feel a bit greedy to see people loading up cases like that?  Sure, but I’m not sure that it’s the horrible deed so many people seem to be claiming it was.