Ack, how has this week gone by already?  I mean, I’m grateful for the weekend and all but day-um.  It’s like I blacked out and woke up and it’s Friday.  Oh well.   Get ready for a cavalcade of random here.

Sunset Du-Loop Wrap Up:

So I didn’t have the pictures until yesterday, or I would have posted sooner – but hey, better late than never.

In the morning, we gathered our things and headed out to the Middle-O-Nowhere Texas.  We marveled at the wildflowers and the cows (hey there, barbeque!!!) and all the not-city stuffs and finally arrived at what is to be described as a RLP (ranch-like-property).  A small house, a guest house, an outdoor shower, a hot tub, a fire pit, a shed, a pond, two porta potties, and then a whole lotta land.  It was awesome!

We set up our tents and blew up the double thick air mattress (what, me, sleep on the ground… sorry, you must have me mixed up with someone else…) and set up camp.  I made us turkey sandwiches which were quickly nommed, and then we alternated sitting around enjoying the lovely day and walking around.  I usually try to sit on my ass as much as possible before race day.  So not the case this time.  Between packing the day before and setting things up and walking around to tour the property – I’m pretty sure I put 3+ miles on my tootsies within 24 hours of the start line without even getting in a workout.

As the day went on it got…hot.  It was definitely over 80 as we changed and got our electronics in order and stretched.  I put on another coat of sunscreen (thank goodness, as I did NOT get a sunburn all day thxuverymuch), and headed out to the start line.  Someone sang the national anthem, and the 20 or so of us got to the road and they said GO, and we were off and running.

Now, there are some things to consider here.  The race was on paved country roads in the middle of nowhere.  No mile markers, just 1.5 miles out and back.  Not much shade.  Only one fluid stop at the 1.5 miles and it was just warmish gatorade.  Water back at the bike exchange but it was also warmish.  No water offered on the bike part.  And keep in mind it was over 80 and HUMID.  My decision not to bring my camelback – maybe not so smart.

Thing two – I consider myself a pretty fit person.  Middle of the pack racer who is improving all the time.  I believe that me, Zliten, and our neighbor’s friend Angel who was doing the race too were the three youngest folks there.  So, I got this.  I can totally beat these geezers, right (and please, I mean geezers in the most affectionate way)?  Nope – they are all part of some super elite running club.  That 60 year old?  Yeah, he’s running Boston next weekend.  That lady in her mid-50s?  She’s talking to me later about her experience running 50 mile ultras.  I beat: Angel, Zliten, and the three people that didn’t finish.  That was incredibly humbling and awesome.  More humbling, but still.  It gave me hope that my best distance running years are way ahead of me if I want them to be.

Anyhoo, getting ahead of myself.  So I take off with Zliten and go about a quarter of a mile and see him immediately behind me still.  I turned around and told him how fast I was running (9:15-30 pace at that time) and suggested if he wanted to finish he might back off, which he did.  I kinda felt bad for doing it, but his goal was to finish.  And he hadn’t run more than 1 mile in quite a while, so I was just looking out for him.  I paced the rest of the back of the packers and ended up running just under 9 minute miles on average, which I’ll call a win.  I didn’t want to go all out as it was hot and I knew I still had another bike and run to go.  I definitely struggled a little on mile 3 because it was mostly uphill – but I reminded myself I’d get a “bike break” so I kept plugging away.

I finished around 27 minutes and hopped on my bike and was off.  I took the first .5 mile easy just to get adjusted and then I pumped it out as much as I could.  I was on average about 12 mph.   Not great, but I’m just not that experienced biking.  I don’t feel comfortable going fast downhill and I’m not super strong uphill.  Anyhoo…the loop was 1.25 miles up and back, then 2.5 miles up and back the other way.  So every downhill was accompanied by the knowledge that we WOULD be going up it on the way back.  The coast down right before the second turn around was not as sweet as it should have been – because I knew I had to slog my ass back up it.  I knew I would pass Zliten on the bike and I decided the best thing I could say to him in the 5 seconds I had – “Save your energy for the hills on the way back.  Love you.”

I was pretty wiped after those hills but finished strong and set out on run #2 – this time it was through uneven muddy trails so I took it slower.  Slightly over 10 minutes for the mile.  My legs were toast and I didn’t want to hurt myself by falling.  When I got back to even ground I sprinted it into the finish and my garmin said 1:18:45.  Totally happy with that, my goal was under 1:20.

After getting some cold water, I filled up my bottle and waited for Zliten.  Everyone asked if he was ok, and I said yep – he’s just slower than all you rockstars, and then we saw him coming in.  They offered to let him just skip the last 1 mile and he was like – “hell naw” and I walked it with him just short of the finish line.  I don’t have a time for him, but he finished!  I’m damn proud of him!

After that, we relaxed and ate (way too much) and drank and mingled and then camped out after looking at the stars and eating smores and enjoying the great feeling you can only get by overexerting yourself in the sun.  And yes, I forgot my swimsuit so I got in the hot tub with my sports bra and running capris, heh.  All in all, it was a kick ass experience, and I cannot wait to do it again next year.  Maybe move up to 4th to last… baby steps…

Iguana Donna:

The poor ‘guana… she looks so adorably pitiful.  So last week at the vet for a checkup, she had started to be increasingly grumpy and hard to control – and she was struggling at the vet, and sliced her OWN paw open.  It was really gross, you could see the muscle and everything.  She had to have stitches (yay, more money!) and we took care of it the best we could, but her nesting box (the place we provided her to lay her eggs) is full of dirt, and she wasn’t gentle on it, so it got infected.  They are treating it as an open wound now, with a bigger, more substantial bandage.

Also, last week, we made the decision to get her spayed.  Her egg laying process was NOT going well and we just wanted to not have to deal with it again (we never plan on breeding her, no thank you!), so we scheduled an appointment (which was yesterday).  When they went in to do the surgery, they found that her ova-duct had ruptured and her insides were full of yolk.  So it was a GREAT thing that we had made the decision to spay her when we did, or it could have been bad news.  Eggs below, and see the hand size for reference.  That is a LOT OF EGGS!

The poor iguana looks like she was in a really bad fight or something – her “cast” on her paw, the 20 staples up her belly from her insides being yoinked out…and she is SUPER skinny now.  We now have to give her pain meds for the next 5 days, calcium orally, food orally (though she IS eating naturally, just not quite enough), nu skin on her wound every day, and continue the antibiotic injections for the next month.  For the love of a lizard.  Srsly.  High maintenance pet.  Expensive pet.  But a very sweet ‘guana.

Yesterday, she was just pouting in the corner resting her head on her bandaged leg and sleeping…it was pitiful but just made me wanna say “D’awwww…” every time I saw her.  I hope she isn’t in too much pain today, she looked ok when I left this morning but I bet she is VERY ready for her meds by the time we are home.


Just a few words because this is a monster post already – this week has been eye opening at how differently I had been eating from my calorie restriction days.  This is a good thing in 2 ways – first of all, there was a REASON I was not losing weight.  It’s not just this mystery.  Second, I adapted from loss to maintenance without barely noticing.  Naturally.  That is good.  However – it’s definitely weird knowing I have planned out my calories on some of the lower days to the T and cannot have another snack.  I have been able to shut off the “I deserve” switch and stick to the plan, which is also good.  Journalling the food I ate and how I felt around the time I ate has been enlightening as well.  Thinking before shoving things down my cakehole?  It’s been a while…

The real test will be this weekend.  Can I keep it in check without my rigid weekday schedule?  I’ll let you know Monday.  Anyone trying to be angelic this week?  How ya doin’?  Any crazy athletic feats lately?  D’awww-worthy pet stories?  Hit me up.