Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Poo on the Holy Half

I'll just get right to the point on this post. This past Sunday I did my second half marathon. Matt and I had been training since January. We both were doing great on our training schedule and our pace continued to increase as we progressed in our training. Although, we were not prepared at all for what hit us on Sunday! Sunday was an abnormally warm spring day, especially for this region of the country. The temperatures reached 85* by the time I finished my race. Until this point the highest it had gotten was in the low 70s, and we hadn't done any long runs above 60*. Needless to say we both bonked!!! So discouraging!!!!!
These are all the runners (left to right: Josh, Matt, Me, Taryn, and Carolyn)

Right before the race began I started to get butterflies in my tummy. Nothing unusual. I've done other races and the same thing happened. Only these butterflies continued for quite a while. This was a smaller race than our last half, but this time it felt so much more crowded (at least at the beginning). The race was on all sorts of terrain. We started out in an asphalt parking lot, then concrete sidewalks, then a gravel/dirt trail around two lakes, and then more sidewalks. All of our training runs were on asphalt roads. It's unbelievable what a difference just the terrain can make. Also this race was seriously lacking in water stations. They were only about every two miles. Pretty rough for such a hot, sunny day. When I got to the first water station, there was a line. So frustrating! I didn't want to "waste" the time while the clock was ticking. Big mistake!. So overall I believe it was the heat along with the lack of hydration, electrolytes and energy that killed it for me.
This is at about mile 5. At this point I was really wishing I was only doing the 10k.

Carolyn and Taryn were very excited about finishing their 10k.

Matt also had a rough race. You can read about it in his post.

My fans found a sign for me to cheer me on to the finish line!

Finally finished! Looking pretty rough and feeling like I'm going to throw up!

We all survived!!

So I've got to learn from the "failures". First thing I learned was never depend on the race to provide the water and electrolytes that you need. Second I'm going to be using some energy gels or goo chomps to refuel during warm, dehydrating workouts and races. 

On to the next event. I've already been bummed for 4 days about this race because I didn't reach my goal, and it went so much worse than I could have imagined. I've got an Olympic Triathlon coming up in June, a century bike ride in September, and probably another half in the fall. I can't let this one race bring me down!!!

So lets get riding. Today was in the 60s and Matt and I took a chill 16 mile ride. Nothing better to brighten the day!!

Hebrews 6:12 NET 
so that you may not be sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and perseverance inherit the promises.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Spring is not quite springing!

I'll admit it... March was a rough blogging month for me. I was doing so well in January and February. But now we are in April, I've got a fresh start.

Matt's parents were here two weeks ago for the tail end of Matt's spring break. They arrived late Thursday night and left early Monday morning. The Thursday that they were driving here was the most beautiful weather we have had in months. It was sunny and in the 70s!!! It was awesome! Friday the temperatures were dropping and have continued to do so since then. For the past two weeks we have had highs in the upper 40s and in the 20s at night. Needless to say, it hasn't really felt much like spring in Michigan, except that there is no snow on the ground.

While Matt's parents were here we went to St. Joseph and walk out to the light house.

This was the classic hangout... We played quite a few games while they were here: Ticket to Ride, Mexican Train, Skip-Bo, and Blockus.

While they were here we also did some exploring around Andrew's University campus by following the Arbor Trail. Who knew there was such a variety of trees on campus. The day before they left it was pouring down rain. Before the raining really started coming down Matt and I got a ten mile run in for our half marathon training. Then we chowed down at a fantastic mexican restaurant, El Rodeo. Then we ventured up to Fennville and at some delicious pie at Crane's Pie Pantry. We all tried something different raspberry rhubarb, peach, apple, and blueberry.
This is a picture of the pie. Excellent food! We can't wait to go back and check out the rest of the menu. Check it out!

Nothing too much has been going on in the Smith house recently. We've just been working and doing school. The next big thing is the Holy Half marathon coming up on April 10. I will admit that I am very nervous. The week before we started training I slipped on some ice and rolled my right ankle. It just hasn't been the same since. A couple weeks ago I got a brace and that seems to help a little bit. Also last week we skipped our 11 mile run, because Matt had class all day. We did run three miles later that evening and six miles on Monday. I rode the bike trainer on Tuesday, and the rest of the week just went down hill. Tomorrow we are scheduled to do our last long run 12 miles. The weather looks terrible 70% chance of rain all day. We'll see if we can find a two hour period of light or no rain. Good news is next Sunday, as of right now, it will be a high of 55* and sunny. Perfect running weather!! So keep us in your prayers as we finish up our training and the race next week.

Exciting news for today... Our 1963 Volkswagon Bug is out of winter storage. Matt just a has few things to tinker with before you see it out on the road!
Leaving Berrien County Youth Fair Grounds

Now she's tucked in in our garage

Can't wait for things to get warmer and really enjoy the springtime!!

2 Corinthians 5:17 The Message
Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Spring Break!!!!

Oh spring you are so close!! Today was the warmest it has been in a very long time. I absolutely loved it. The highest I saw was 62*. Awesome!!! I am so excited about spring. In honor of the beautiful weather today, Matt and I went on a 3 mile jog in SHORTS! My legs felt naked after all the running I've been doing in tights.

Speaking of jogging... Matt and I are still training for the Holy Half marathon in South Bend, IN on the campus of Notre Dame. I am definitely not a fast runner, but recently I've been enjoying it more and more. I'm super excited to see my time continuing to get better and better! A week ago Sunday, I did my long run (9 fmiles) and averaged 24 seconds a mile faster than my goal. Then the next week on a short run I probably did my fastest 3 miles ever. I'm really excited about seeing improvement. 

So Sunday's are usually our long run days, but we decided to take a break and do a day trip to Chicago. 
We hit up on the Shedd Aquarium...

...and then chowed down on some grub at Ed Debevick's.

Over all a super great way to start off spring break. The time change has also been great. I'm loving it that the sun doesn't go down until 8pm. We have also gotten to do some other fun things this week. Tuesday night we went to dinner and a movie with Nick and Taryn. Then tonight (Wednesday) we went over to some friends' house for dinner. We went to Connie and Roger's house. We got to know their daughter, Kim, and Kim's husband, James, just as we were moving from TN. Kim and James' dog, Levi was staying with Kim's parents. So Maglee and Levi were reunited and got to play in the backyard while we all ate a delicious autumn stew and cornbread. 
Maglee was more interested in licking Levi than posing for the picture. 

More fun is in store for the rest of the week and weekend. Matt's parents are coming to visit. I'll have to let you know about all the stuff we get into. 

No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow.  ~Proverb

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Chicago, Chicago... It's my kinda place!

I had plenty of adventures to go around this week. Monday I worked at a dental office. It was a great day, but didn't get home until 7:30pm. I did squeeze in a bike ride on the trainer. It was starting to get cold again, so some exercise indoors was necessary. Tuesday we got more snow, and I rode inside again. I also started to pack for my trip to Chicago. 

On Wednesday afternoon around 4pm I began my trek to Chicago. I rode the South Shore Line from South Bend to Chicago. It took about two hours and 30 minutes. It was quite a shock to start at the small airport in South Bend and get out of the train on Michigan Ave. in Chicago. I then walked about a half a mile to the hotel I was staying in with my parents.  I had to wait for awhile until their flight got in. So I read a lot of a new book I'm reading, Born to Run
Born to Run Signed Copy For Sale

Once the parents got in we got to enjoy a yummy dinner at Kitty O'Shea's.

 On Thursday, Big John, my stepdad, and I headed over to the Mid-winter Dental Mettings. He's a dentist, and I'm a dental hygienist. I was pretty fun because we got to hang out and talk about teeth! After our meetings my mom, Big John, and I met up with my cousin Emily. We ate a classic Chicago pizzeria. There's nothing like Chicago pizza.

Friday, Big John and I had more dental meetings. We did get to enjoy more good food that night. We ate at one of my mom's and my favorite restaurants, The Walnut Room, inside Macy's on Michigan Ave. The best part was dessert, Frango ice cream pie.
After eating and avoiding Chicago traffic, we headed back to Berrien Springs, where I was reunited with my wonderful husband.

Saturday we got to enjoy more time with my parents. We decided to celebrate Mom and Big John's birthday, because both of their birthdays are in March. We got them the game, Ticket to Ride. A fun game we were introduced to by our friends Carolyn and Tiago and Nick and Taryn. Overall a super great day!

 This morning we got up and met my parents at their hotel and headed to St. Joseph. We ate a greasy, but good, breakfast at Thornton's Hometown Cafe. We started to walk around St. Joseph, but the wind was too brisk. We did catch a glimpse of Lake Michigan. It amazed us how much of the ice had melted in just a couple of weeks since the last time we had been there. We did a little bit more driving around St. Joseph and Berrien Springs, but then we had to say our good-byes. My parents are now safely back in Georgia.
Thanks Mom and Big John for the fun week. We had a great time and were sad to see you leave. Love you!

Matt and I did get an 8 mile run in this afternoon. We're getting closer to the Holy Half. I am enjoying running in 40* weather much better than 10*-20*.

Proverbs 15:20 The Message
Intelligent children make their parents proud; lazy students embarrass their parents.

(I hope we are the intelligent ones, not the lazy ones!)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Here comes the Sun... There goes the snow!

This week we were tempted with springlike weather. Most of the week was above freezing and most of the snow has melted. Although, this coming week it's supposed to be cold again. Oh well... We enjoyed it while it lasted.

Monday was Valentine's Day. We have some friends that have a tradition of going to a new pizza place every Valentine's day. So we decided to start the tradition this year. We ate a delicious pizza at Silver Beach Pizza and then Dairy Queen afterwards. All in all a very good Valentine's day!

We were so excited about the pizza we couldn't even wait to take a picture.

Tuesday, Maglee got to get of the house and enjoy her walk.
The leftovers of our igloo

 Wednesday, I went bowling for Girl's Night. 





 Thursday, Matt and I just relaxed and hung out at home!

Friday, Maglee got to enjoy two of her favorite things... napping on a down comforter and in the sun!

Saturday, we enjoyed hanging out with friends and taking Maglee and Laela on a walk in the field. They both got baths when we got home, because they were covered in mud from the melted snow.

 Today (Sunday), Matt and I enjoyed working together doing some data entry!

Overall a very fun week! I did get some running in too. Just a few weeks away from the Holy Half. I only did 4 miles today, because it started raining on me. Freezing temperatures and raining are not good for a girl recovering from a cold. 

My parents are coming this week to visit. I'm super excited about all the fun we have planned!

Proverbs 16:15 The Message
Good-tempered leaders invigorate lives; they're like spring rain and sunshine.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Fun, Fun, Fun!

I was kinda sad when I was looking over my pictures from this week. I realized that I missed taking a picture on Monday. I was doing so well. Although... I was a little bit busier this week. I worked at a Dental Office on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. I love working at this office, but the downside is I usually don't get home until 7:30 or so. So I missed my picture on Monday.
Maglee got the picture for Tuesday. 

Wednesday is usually Girl's Night, but most of the girls could not come this week. So it turned into a couples night. Taryn had pizza, salad, and apple pie. We had a lot of fun hanging out with four of our favorite people: Nick and Taryn and Josh and Brittany.

Thursday night was date night. We headed down to South Bend and ate at Chipolte. We made a quick trip to the mall and then headed to Walmart for some grocery shopping. We actually really like grocery shopping, especially together. So it was worthy of date night. This Monday is Valentine's Day. Matt and I don't really make a big deal of the day, but we did get some treats for each other at Walmart. This is our Valentine's candy. These are really treats for us, because I can't even remember the last time we bought bags of candy.

This weekend we got another treat. My cousin, aunt, and uncle were in town for my cousin's basketball tournament. It was extra fun because this is the high school Matt and I went to and played on the basketball teach. 
This is from the game on Friday afternoon. 

On Saturday we had Aunt Judy, Uncle Steve, and Brooke over for lunch. After lunch Brooke decided to rest up for her championship game that night while the rest of us headed over to Lake Michigan.
When we got to St. Joseph we found out there was an ice sculpting festival going on. This was my favorite sculture.

Me, Judy, and Steve standing on Lake Michigan. No worries it was very solid!

Matt and I also got a pic!

Brooke's team played awesome on Saturday night. Unfortunately the game just slipped through their fingers in the last two minutes. It was a very exciting game!

The snow is starting to melt. Matt, Nick, Taryn, and I did our long runs today. 40* is not bad running weather. Later in the day we took Maglee for a walk by that time it was 47*. She was loving the sunshine and warmer weather.

Matthew 12:35 The Message
A good person produces good deeds and words season after season. An evil person is a blight on the orchard.