Making plans…

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The past few months have been full of surprises.

Two pink lines. Our house selling and moving to NY. Starting a new job.

Finding a new house!!! Or not. Ok, finding another new house!!! We thought we found the house we wanted, but someone had already made an offer on it. We were supposed to travel to Virginia for New Years, but since I got sick we stayed here and ended up finding another house- and making an offer!

With so much up in the air recently, I’ve been trying to take control of the few things I can plan out for now.

House plans

Taking Pinterest by storm. I have so many ideas of what I want to do, and being pregnant isn’t really helping. Last time I only had to focus on Emma’s nursery and a few other small details in our house. Now I have an entire house to remodel and decorate.

Meal plans

I’ve been working on getting back into the habit of planning meals for the week. I like cooking, but the process of planning and then shopping for ingredients is one of my least favorite things to do. I signed up for Blue Apron after a reading a few sponsored blog posts and reviews about it. Our first shipment comes this Tuesday and I’m more excited about it than I probably should be. I like that you can check out the menus ahead of time and pick the ones you want.

Race plans

This part isn’t nearly as important as it usually would be. I still enjoy races even if I’m not able to push myself to the limit. I have a few races on my calendar for now:

February 1st- Winter Series #5 race at UAlbany (4 miles)

February 15th- Winter Marathon Relay (I think I’ve decided to scratch this one, only because it’s a bit long and I know I’m going to have to stop a few times- bladder pressure is constant issue)

March 21st- Shamrock 8k

I’m also tentatively planning to run a 5k on Mother’s Day and maybe the OK 5k at the beginning of June. Things get a little iffy in the last few weeks of pregnancy, so I’m just keeping those races in mind for now, and I’ll decide as it gets closer.

Do you have any fun races on your calendar for the rest of the winter/ early spring?

I’ve had this blog post in my drafts folder for awhile, and February seemed like it was so far away at the time… but today is the last day of January! One more month of winter AND daylight savings is on March 8th, which always seems to make spring seem much closer…

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Weekend festivities

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First off, it was time for a haircut. I really don’t even remember when I last did that… maybe the beginning of the summer?

Fantastic "before" look complete with headband to keep things under control

Fantastic “before” look complete with headband to keep things under control

I had to return a coat before my appointment so I actually really tried hard to not look like I just rolled out of bed, but it obviously didn’t work. Anyway, two hours later…

After

After

The girl that shampooed my hair was all, “You have so much hair!” Obviously that’s why I’m here (is what I wanted to say), but I just said “yeah” or something like that. This was the first time since I was a kid that I can remember having to stand up to get my hair cut (when my mom cut my hair and I had to stand on the back porch and hold as still as possible- that never went well).

The rest of the weekend included a track workout (8 x 400 meters) with three of my favorite workout partners. My 400 times were pretty consistent, around 80-82, except for the first one (93- guess I wasn’t warmed up yet) and last one (76- got my ass handed to me, thanks B). Also read this interesting article on cool downs the next day and pondered my current cool down routine. We followed that up with a birthday celebration for Pete that consisted of two of his favorite things: wings and football.

Almost pulled out a win with these two cute cheerleaders

Almost pulled out a win with these two cute cheerleaders

I don’t have a photo of the cake from before, but I was pretty proud of myself for trying something new. I made a “zebra cake” with chocolate frosting. The recipe from the back of Hershey’s cocoa is the best freaking chocolate frosting I’ve ever had. I seriously had to hold myself back from eating it all with a spoon. I’m not very domestic when it comes to baking, but I’m working on it.

Happy Birthday, Pete!

Happy Birthday, Pete!

I also did an easy 10 mile long run this weekend. The early part of this week will be all easy runs in preparation for the Turkey Trot 5k on Thursday morning. I just found out that we have a winter weather advisory for Wednesday and Thursday and we may get 9 inches of snow!

Are you running a Turkey Trot this week? Do you have any fun family traditions for Thanksgiving?

Our family tradition involves running the Troy Turkey Trot every year, then going out for a quick bagel breakfast, followed by a day of cooking and eating everything in sight. Here’s my Turkey Trot history, full of many ups and downs over the years: Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, and I Quit.

Life and stuff (and some real talk)

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Well, the tornado that is my life has finally calmed down for a few hours so I figured I should at least start writing about everything that has been going on.

In August, we decided to put our house up for sale and move to NY. The end of summer was a blur of home improvement projects combined with first birthday party planning. We went on a family vacation in Corolla, NC for Labor Day weekend and when we returned there was a for sale sign in our front yard.

Keeping the house spotless for showings with a toddler and a messy dog was a challenge I wasn’t quite prepared for, but within a few weeks we had an offer on our house. If you’ve ever bought or sold a home, you probably know that there are good days and bad days, and lots of uncertainty. Although there were some stressful moments, we were able to close the at the end of October. Now looking back on it, we were so freaking lucky to sell our house that fast. I almost can’t believe it happened.

I took this photo as we drove away. Our first little house.

I took this photo as we drove away. Our first little house.

So, we’ve been here in NY for the past two weeks. The first week was a blur of just trying to unpack and organize the things we would need, and taking care of all of the boring details of closing accounts and opening new ones. We both started new jobs (more on that later).

And now, here’s the real unedited truth. Living out of boxes is frustrating!!! I can never find what I’m looking for. I have a problem with exclamation points, and I’m really trying to work on that. I miss running in my old neighborhood in Virginia.

I took lots of photos on my last run around the neighborhood, but I'm sure it will be burned into my memory anyway.

I took lots of photos on my last run around the neighborhood, but I’m sure it will be burned into my memory anyway.

It’s cold and all of the leaves have fallen off the trees already, but I think I will get used to it (I hope). Watching the New York City Marathon was so inspiring, even the little ones got in on the action this year! And dang, it looked cold at the start.

Cheering for the runners!

Cheering for the runners!

But, I will leave on a positive note. Thanksgiving is coming soon, along with one of my favorite races, the Troy Turkey Trot. I did my first speed workout since the Mohawk-Hudson Marathon on Saturday and felt great, and I’m excited to race a fast 5k in a few weeks. It’s an out-and-back flat, fast course and a family tradition that I look forward to every year.

“I will try again tomorrow.”

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Yesterday was not a great day, but I’m learning to stop being so hard on myself. Even though I had to keep stopping and starting, at least I got it done. I think this training cycle is going to be a big, fat lesson in patience… but I’m excited to start this journey. Much needed rest day today for us both!

My Friday Night (T.G.I.F)

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After a [insert expletive] day at work… all I wanted to do was run. I was counting down the minutes.

At 2:35 I finally got out the door. It was overcast, cold, not the most inviting day. But I was in my head, working things out, pushing it up the hills and coasting down them.

I finished my 13 miles and battled Friday afternoon traffic. Got an amazing phone call from one of the teachers that I coach… she ran her furthest run yet, over 7 miles. She’s hooked now. There’s no turning back [you know it].

It’s going to be a chill Friday night here. Pizza, wine, Home Alone, and stove top popcorn. I’m tired. I’ve already had two long runs this week [one 15 miler and one 13 miler, with an 18 mile marathon pace workout awaiting me this Sunday]. I remember when I used to think 13 miles was a “long run”.

Home Alone is my favorite Christmas movie. By far. I remember watching it with my best friend Vanessa and with my sisters every year. Kevin was the same exact age as me and I thought that was cool. Sometimes I feel like an 8 year old when I watch it. I heard the McAllister’s house is actually for sale in suburban Chicago. That’s my ultimate dream house.

The house from the movie "Home Alone"

Yep, I just looked it up. Only 2.4 million. No big deal.

Well, the pizza’s ready. Hope everyone has a good weekend! I have some really cool news to share soon, but in the meantime I’d just like to wish everyone running at USATF Club XC Championships good luck tomorrow… especially the Oiselle Racing ladies!

Late Night. Rough Morning.

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Last night we had a surprise party for my husband in Virginia Beach and I was up waaaaay later than normal. I also had far too many adult beverages. Usually I am fine with not drinking at all, I only occasionally have more than 2 or 3 drinks at a time, but you have to make exceptions for special occasions. Like someone turning THIRTY!!

Anyway, I slept til nine this morning and tried to hurry up and get out the door before I talked myself out of my workout. The first thing I noticed was.. it’s friggin hot! I find it really annoying that it can’t stay a constant temperature around here. It was 80 degrees on Wednesday, 40 on Thursday, in the 30s on Friday when I ran before work, 40s yesterday, and today it’s 75 degrees. It’s like that in the winter too, which is why they don’t ever bother to clear the roads after it snows- they just wait for it to melt. I’m not kidding.

So my workout was 17 miles with 8 at goal marathon pace, which is 6:40 per mile. In my state of temporary delirium I forgot to add on an extra half mile to my tempo after after I finished 5 loops around the park, so I actually did 7.5 miles at MP (1.5 mile splits were 9:59, 10:00, 9:58, 10:03, 9:49). Oh well, I didn’t do it on purpose and I definitely could have run that extra 1/2 mile. The actual workout was fine and not that hard. But that cool down was sooo bad.. I don’t know why but I was struggling big time. I found a new path to run on, but there were a million Canadian geese that kept hissing at me and it made me so mad. Then I started laughing at myself for getting pissy with a bunch of geese, as if they know better.

Little bastards.

This week I ran 68 miles, and next week is our Thanksgiving tradition: the Troy Turkey Trot. I’m going to write a post about my Turkey Trot racing history this week because it’s kind of humorous to look back on it now. I’ve done it every year since I started running in 1995 (except for 2003 when I stayed in CA for Thanksgiving because I couldn’t afford the flight home), followed by a trip to Bruegger’s Bagels and a day of cooking and eating with my crazy family. There are some good stories from past Thanksgivings.

Welcome!

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Welcome to my new blog, Piece of Cake Running!

I’m sitting here watching the ING NYC Marathon while I type this.  Good luck to all the runners in NYC!

❤ Mollie