Quick!! Outrun the Panis

Just in case any runners are suffering some a lack of motivation…

panis
Who else will join me in the fight to bring the Panis to extinction?
panis
I dare say, every mile clocked is just THAT much closer.

Get out, go get ‘er done, my runner peeps! :)

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Want more Cartoons??

My post on Input vs. Output.

Tips for combatting motivation lulls…hey, they happen to everyone!

Runnerdudes, some more motivation HERE for you. ;)

Some thoughts on childhood obesity.

Runner nutrition tips and such.
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1) To rid the world of Panises (Pani?!?) more people should…

2) Runners rock and it’s hardly because we are panis-devoid. Name your favorite physical perk of being a runner. Then, name a mental perk.
Legs. Without runner endorphins I would turn into something even Godzilla and King Kong wouldn’t want to mess with.

3) Give a shout out to some Tuesday motivation! (ie: quote, tip, mantra, etc.)

best running shirts

Where Track Reins Supreme: Let’s celebrate because let’s be honest, runners are just better

Americans need to learn how to throw a proper track party. After New Year’s the next big shindig seems to be the Super Bowl…I mean we’re talking weeks and weeks of hype and grocery stores plugging hot deals for the party gluttony. Where is the same kind of love for track and field?
runner
Well it’s there, but us poor States dwellers have to travel over to Europe if we want to take part. Though don’t worry it’s more than worth the travel because it’s not just one party you’ll be privy too but a whole summer. Track season is Europe is something hard to explain unless you’ve been there; did you know there are actually countries where runners are bona-fide celebrities? Not just the kind that can quietly bust out the mile repeats on a track so fast a runner geek’s jaw would drop but that oblivious walker in lane one would fail to even move to the side?

I understand there are other sports, I’ve got friends and family who play in them, I do go to games and cheer and support…of COURSE. But I’ll be honest, track and running has my heart and I can really get my screaming pants on for even more. My screaming pants and my running shoes…bring it.

Call me a running elitist if you must but runners are cut from one heck of a ‘hardy stock.’ We run through kinds of pain like it’s ‘no big thang’…I don’t condone it, sometimes it’s more stupidity or refusal to acknowledge the obvious on our parts. But at the same time in the back of our minds we all can’t help but think, “Da##, that’s sickly awesome” when we know runners who raced on multiple stress fractures. The runners who, when they take off their spikes it’s a bloodified massacre underneath.

Who amongst us hasn’t taken a tad of perverse glee when they’ve gone in to see some kind of sports medicine doctor and they take a look at us and say something akin to, “Sooo, in looking back through such-and-such test I don’t understand how you were able to even walk in here, aren’t you hurting?”

Runners, yes, our stubbornness can translate into stupidity at certain times, nowhere do they give medals who can suffer through the most idiotic pain. BUT they do give medals to who can suffer through as much pain when it comes to the lactic acid burning, the lungs that want to explode, the legs wondering if they will actually be able to lift again and booty-lock so bad you sort of wonder if that javelin were to impale you on the spot if that would hurt less.
fortune cookie
Runners are ballers. So Europe recognizes that, what’s wrong with America? I mean, sure we have football players who get their share of brute force injuries, I know those have to hurt, but those things come usually from being smashed by someone else…runners, we’re out there smashing ourselves in a sense.

Track doesn’t take time outs. When you hit lap 10 of a 10k you can’t just pause to collect yourself, come up with a new game plan or even tie your shoe without losing distance…the clock keeps ticking peeps.

Maybe the US doesn’t have the attention span to sit through 25 laps. We do live in an age where most want to get to the point in a Twitter-alloted character numbers or less…but runners who ‘get’ it know there is plenty to sit through each of those laps. The subtle nuances, the elbows, the moves, who covers the moves, who thinks they’re hot enough to surge to the lead and stay there. The right race could have us blasting out multiple Tweets per lap.

Well, at least in Europe they would. ;)

I’m not saying we don’t have our pockets of track mayhem in the States, the Trials gave us a glimmer. But like I said, the majority of grocery stores weren’t pumping their promo’s for weeks on end about their sales on mini-weiners. And the Trials, what, isn’t that once every four years?

Don’t fret my fellow running fans, there are countries who recognize that running reins supreme. And at least we all know that our sport, and we are, the best…not that that makes us running elitists or anything. ;)

1) Do you follow track or running as a sport much? Do you follow any other sports?

2) Tell me something that makes running the best sport…c’mon you know you want to!

3) What’s been a time where you were proud to be a runner? Could be related to an accomplishment that no one else thought you could do, a ‘stupid runner’ injury story that you are sickly proud of, that you know your pain tolerance is higher than most…or that you just look really good in your running shorts. :P

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“I’m Better Than You” — Being confident in yourself doesn’t mean you have to be an ego-maniac

Running takes confidence. Running also builds confidence. Yet at the same time confidence is a tricky thing and something many of us struggle with. Reaching for our goals and accomplishing great things demands that we confident in our abilities yet at the same time society tells us to not be overtly or overly confident. The latter examples are what we then coin ego-maniacs, these are the people we joke about having heads too big for their britches and they take up a whole room between their bodies and their egos.

woman boxer

I will beat you. :P


So we grow up with mixed signals about what is enough confidence and what is too much; usually it comes down to thinking highly of yourself but never actually voicing that you do. To put it out there means you are bragging and nobody like a bragger. What to do what to do?

Sports and running promote self-esteem because you can quantify the progress you make; hard work and perseverance lead to improvement and reinforces that work ethic. Yet, it’s not uncommon for runners to be afraid that they don’t measure up; doubting themselves as well as wondering what in the world they are doing thinking they can actually DO such-and-such. These are normal feelings and everyone has them to a certain degree at times, but get stuck in that circular, negative thought pattern and you wind up stuck.

To practice and promote a little self-confidence I thought we could play a fun little game. I’m going to call it Find Your Inner Rapper. Generalizing I may be, but I tend to think rappers are often pretty confident in themselves. I’m going to call myself Rev Runna CC…now pick your own name and let’s roll out.

* I want to to beat you. Pick a phrase that would be something you’d say at the staring line of a race, a workout, or even just going out for a run. Examples: I’m going to break 21 minutes in the 5k. I will not give up on this workout. I’m not going to let this dude next to me pass me. I’d like to go at least 30 minutes without walking for this run.

* Ditch the clutter. Check that phrase you came up with and cut out any of the following: like to, give up, I’m not, want to. Basically you want to pare out any unnecessary adjectives or verbs that aren’t calling immediate action…your phrase should be as short and to the point as can be. Why? Here’s a change to some of examples above: I will beat you. I will break 21 minutes. I will crush this workout. I’m better than him. (ie: guy next to you) I won’t walk. See the differences here? They all call action but they ALSO are all positive, reinforcing words. Even saying “I will not give up” includes the option of giving up and has you thinking it…ditch it.
tough kid
* Crime and punishment. Rappers are not all thugs but for our game the rest of it goes that you mess with some of the ‘rules’ of society. Have fun out there, represent. (How many stereotypes can I cram in here and pretend I’m hard core??)

Remember folks, society may call it a faux pas, but it’s not a crime to see a runner on the street and think to yourself, “I could totally whoop on him.”

It aint a crime to warm-up with a friend, wish them luck on the starting line but when the gun goes off treat them as any other competitor and run your best. Just so long as regardless of outcome you wish them well and then cool-down together.

It’s not a moral offense when asked what time you want to run and not stumble, stutter, pause, or include the words: might, we’ll see if, I doubt I can but, probably won’t but we’ll see if. Let’s be short, to the point, and call on those action phrases.

It’s more than okay to blast your pump-up music and sing horribly off-key; even if there are profanities. I’ve found some explicit lyrics are at times called for to properly get your gamer face on.

Don’t feel bad if you find yourself smirking and filled with pride when you drop the sucker behind your panting like mad. You’re faster than him and you know it.

The bottom line is: THOUGHTS are not a crime. You can’t be penalized for thinking something even if it’s the most egotistical thought in the world. In fact, get a little cozy with some of those phrases and build up your runner self-esteem. You don’t need to say them to be fierce…just act on them.

Word out yo.

1) What’s your runner rapper name?

2) What ego building phrase did you come up with?

3) What crimes did you partake in? Others not listed are begging to be shared!

4) What thoughts do you promise to not feel guilty about all in the sake of boosting your running ego and drive to improve your performances?

5) Am I dork for this game?
A resounding yes from the crowd, please.

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And a Wee Bit ‘O Luck to Ya…

Yes, Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! I could also say St. Patty’s Day but every time I do it makes me think there should really be a Happy York Peppermint Patty’s Day somewhere around here too. ;)
leprechaun runner
I hope you’ve all been having a great one and doing a little celebrating yourself. I’m not a drinker, so if you are feel free to have my leftover beers. I do love everything green, though, and you could find me noshing on some green chocolate chip pancakes. (My dad used to make those for us when I was a kid on St. Patty’s Day.)

It’s a fact that my all-time favorite color is lime green and so let’s hear it for a few more oh-so cliched Irish holiday inspired items:

* Don’t steal my lucky shamrock. Do you believe in luck? Do you have little trinkets, rituals, or things you swear to others you know don’t really bring you luck but you have them/do them anyways just because, well, it couldn’t hurt? Hey, I own up to the fact that whenever I see a clock reading 11:11 I make a wish to myself. ;)

* Leaping Leprechauns! Those little guys have springs on their legs, or maybe they have just been doing a ton of plyometrics. ;) I HATE doing those plyo’s, this girl can’t jump, but they work wonders for your speed. So get to jumping like a wee, green man!

* Corned beef and cabbage, say what? I’m not a big corned beef fan, I do like cabbage. But don’t shy away from all red meats if you do like them because they have iron, which is super important for runners! If you don’t like red meats (guilty) then seek out other iron rich foods…hey, spinach is a leafy green that contains a lot of iron. It could be cut into the shape of a clover too…maybe. Teehee.
prankster
* Pranksters! I wish I were really good at pulling off great pranks and such but I am so gullible that I usually end up being the one pranked. That said I use sarcasm like it’s going out of style and plenty of times people think I’m being serious and sometimes that gets me in a wee bit ‘o trouble.

* Spuds! I am in love with the spud, I’ll take me my fair share of potatoes and then some. My favorite is probably a big ‘ol baked potato loaded with chicken, broccoli…and actually cottage cheese. Is that last one weird? I don’t care, I like it. And for you skin haters…you’re missing out, the skin of the potato contains nearly all of the awesome vitamins and nutrients found in the potato…so choke the skin down if you have to. Jk.

* Friends and merry, good times. You picture people celebrating St. Patty’s Day and you think of parties, people, and good times. I’m all for that…whether you are a fellow sweat obsessed runner or not, you can be my friend. :)
skate boarder
Have a wonderful Saint Patrick’s Day and I think I’m going to talk to someone about instituting a York Peppermint Patty’s Day too! ;) (naturally then, we’ll need a Junior Mints Day…just saying.)

1) What did you/are you doing for St. Patty’s Day?

2) What is your favorite St. Patty’s themed item?

3) Do you believe in ‘luck’ or do you have a lucky item/ritual?

4) Do you like potatoes? Are you a fan of corned beef and cabbage? How do you make sure you get enough iron? Pick any of those and answer…hehe.

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More Than a Sport: How running changes lives and gives hope to Ugandan orphans

I truly believe that running is much more powerful than merely a sport or, dare I even say, a hobby. It holds the power to transform lives, instill lessons for nearly all other areas of life, it connects people, and is my first choice of feel good drugs. (The Hungry Runner Girl just did an excellent post today about endorphins and running.)
happy rainbow
Running has impacted my own life quite a bit, it’s taken me places, it’s introduced me to people, it’s to the point where I know if I weren’t a runner I’d be a completely different person.

* Running instilled in me a new kind of work ethic and dedication. True, I’m a Type A kind of person and tend to me rather self-motivated but I know that running helped me take that drive and really apply it. Running will test you with so many bumps and bruises along the way that if you can outlast those other things comparatively seem easier.

* Running showed me there can be fun in the trials. Anything worth working for is going to make you, well, work for it. But with running, even the most excruciating of workouts are oddly ‘fun’ whether it’s because of your training partners or the twisted kind of satisfaction of feeling the rush of kicking your own butt.

* Running gave me hope and light. After my car accident I faced the possibility of a completely different life, one that potentially was without even walking. In my bones I knew I was a runner and that it was WORTH working and doing anything I could to get back to it again. If the doctors didn’t think it was possible, that’s okay, I did.

* Running’s a common ground. I feel connected to people the second I find out they are runners…it’s an insta-friend in the same community.
mad runner
I’m a nasty beast without my dose of endorphins from running, and if I’m injured then I at least have to do some kind of cross-training. Even on those days where I don’t feel like it, I force those first few minutes and keep going. Sometimes it’s only the first mile that stinks, sometimes the whole run isn’t exactly a glowing walk on sunshine, but when I’m done I always feel better.

Another story that proves running is much more than a sport. I met Julius Achon back in 2004 when we were both runners in the Nike Oregon Project. Julius is hilarious in so many ways but if you knew his past you’d be further amazed by his genial manner and quick smile. He escaped tumultuous Uganda to run on a college scholarship here in the US. He went on to win multiple NCAA titles and set records at George Mason University and then to run professionally.

Source
Had he not been a runner he would have been killed, that is a fact. He was captured by the Rebels in Uganda and was only released because they found out he was a fast runner and may bring pride to his country. He and Eloise Wellings (another dear friend and one of the selfless individuals I know; she is a professional and World Class distance runner from Australia) have set up the Love Mercy Foundation to improve the lives of those still living in Uganda.

Please read their story and help out if you can, it is truly inspiring. (There is also a Facebook page you can ‘like’.) Running to them, and those countless individuals in Uganda, is much more than a sport it is a lifeline and ray of hope.

I am a runner and know what it means to me, what does running mean to you?

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Running Through Time: Fashions, Records, and Harriers

Oh, to be running in the 70′s and 80′s.We should all do a collective moment of silence in thanks for technical fibers and moisture wicking clothing. The chaffage and sweat stains that some of those polyester shorts would inflict upon us almost makes my thighs burn just thinking about it.

70s workout fashion

Oh beautiful workout fashions of decades past. :)

I’m probably the least fashion savvy person, but being that I use any excuse to don sweats and workout clothing this is an area I can take a little more of a stance on. It’s interesting to watch the clothing and shoes change through the years…along with the records and times dropping.

Wow, running even got on People? Well, if they got Farrah to do it...

Source
Sure the athletes do all of the work but it would be naive to not acknowledge that a margin of the time drops are linked to better running gear. Lighter spikes, streamlined shorts, speedsuits, they make our sport not only more comfortable but allow harriers to get the most out of themselves or at least more ‘bang for their buck.’

I’ve talked to shoe developers that explained the logistics of just how much of a difference even a few grams make when it comes to lighter spikes and faster PR’s. If you’re capable of running XX for a 10k in trainers, toss on some near weightless spikes and you could be looking at slicing off up to a minute (maybe more depending on your pace and shoe comparisons) off that time. Appealing, no?

The fact that nearly all tracks now-a-days are all-weather and lightyears ahead of the old cinder tracks of the past, runners today are certainly ‘luckier’ than those of decades past.

foot

20% off your shoe weight

When all of this is taken into consideration, the question begs to asked, should we attach a little more weight to what was achieved during those decades past or the accolades of certain runners? Should we grant a more ‘baller status’ of some of the harriers that achieved such phenomenal feats off of what they were given?

We’ll never be able to compare it, we only have numbers to go off of and a record is a record. Sure, there will always be the ‘what if’ game to play; ‘what if’ we were able to go through time and even the playing field between today’s record holders and those of the past. But that isn’t a reality and you’d only drive yourself mad (or be running in circles…hehe) if you got into the debate too far.

Instead, let’s all be thankful that we are lucky enough to have access to shorts that aren’t polyester chaffage bombs. Let’s be in awe of the athletes of the past just as we are of today’s current running rockstars. Let’s look forward to what more is to come and further propel our own selves forward to reach for new, higher things. After all, if we’re running anyways me might as well run forward. ;)

1) If you were running in the 70′s or 80′s what are some trends that you think you’d be rocking while running?
If I’m going to be stuck with sweat stained shorts you bet they will at least be in a bright color. Though I don’t see myself ever getting into running with leg warmers. Hehe. ;)

2) What’s the advancement in running fashion/apparel/gear you’re especially thankful for?
Moisture wicking everything and split shorts.

3) Who are some of your favorite running stars of the past and present?

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Is What You See Really What You Get? The paradox of your reality versus actuality and being a ‘skinny’ runnerchick

How accurate is your version of yourself compared to what other people see you as? Going further I’m sure what other people would describe you as probably differs even between the person being asked.
running dream
I’ve got a runner’s build. I’m smaller than the ‘average’ woman but I don’t feel like I’m out of place small. I feel normal…whatever that is. Put me in a group of athletic, endurance-based women and I’d say I probably blend in.

But I’ve been out running on the road before and had someone yell at me from their car, “Stop running girl…go eat! You look like a praying mantis!” (on a side-note, praying mantis, really? I mean of all things to compare a skinny person to, that one threw me…haha.) I got annoy, pissed even and shouted back, “Fudge you, I could eat you under the table!” Which I’m sure is the honest to goodness truth. I get peeved because in our culture it seems taboo to make fun of a fat person, but it’s okay to hate on the skinnier folk? Just saying.

girl boxer

I would have liked to punch the dude in the face. :)

If I’m in the middle of pushing myself or doing a hard workout I’m not fooling myself into believing I look pretty. My form has gotten better, I did a LOT of work on it, but I’ll never be one of those people who can make it look effortless…like a machine. I consciously remind myself to relax, drop my shoulders, but I’m sure I look heinous and most likely with some kind of spit clinging to my cheek.

I’ve done tempo runs on the treadmill and I’m sure I’ve looked quite the sight busting my bum, praying that if I bump up the speed just a hair more I can sustain it and not be thrust off the back of the machine. My pounding feet probably echo in the gym, others who don’t ‘get’ the running thing probably think I’m just insane.

The thing is, at that point I really don’t care. Seriously, I’d rather run a few seconds faster on that stupid treadmill, risk the chance of being shot off the back, even if that means earning a ‘freak’ moniker. I do know that anyone who is a ‘runner runner’ would understand and probably not even bat an eye, as they are amidst their own workouts.

To the guy in the car, I’m fully aware I’m not an obese American woman, still smaller than ‘average’ whatever that is. I know I don’t have a chest, JLo from the Block (I know she’s since moved on past that old nickname but I like it) with her booty I am not…but my legs are strong, they are muscular. My arms are defined and not the old hummingbird wings of my pre-weight lifting days.
eating pop tarts
I’m fine with it. I also kind of like the look of shock on peoples’ face when the runnerchick IS able to eat them under the table. So eat that, praying mantis!

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Disclaimer: of course there is a point of being unhealthily small and no one should feel pressured to go through unhealthy behaviors to look a certain way. At the root of it all, it’s about being happy in WHO you are, whatever that ends up looking like. I think sports/fitness can help with self-confidence.

Along the same lines of body image, SkinnyRunner did an interesting post today about Crystal Renn, a model who started out in runway but later admitted she could only maintain that frame due to an eating disorder. She then gained weight, became a plus-sized model, and a major advocate AGAINST traditional models and runway. Now, this same woman is back to a slighter self and on the cover of Sports Illustrated, which has led to a backlash amongst the plus-sized community. Interesting stuff to chew on and mull over.

Last note tied to the perception of ourselves and how it varies between who is looking at us…in the seriously now annoying craze of those meme picture frames with the black backdrop with various photo-cropped pictures of ‘how I see myself’, ‘how my mom sees me’, ‘how my co-workers see me’, etc…The Faster Bunny did a funny one on runners.
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1) How would you say your perception of yourself may be different from how someone else would describe you? And WHO is that someone else, and how would that change depending on who that person is?

2) How do you define yourself or be happy with what/who you are? How has being athletic effected that if at all?
Running, or being active, really helped me be more secure with myself. More-so because I saw my body as a vessel to actually DO something rather than aesthetics alone. But I won’t lie, if I were to say, to gain 30 pounds I wouldn’t be happy…but that’s more because I wouldn’t be happy with myself, or feel comfortable with myself, not so much because of anything anyone else may say or think.

3) How much does what other people think or tell you really effect or matter to you?
Now I’d say I’m to the point where unless you are a close friend or family member, it doesn’t bug me. But I think that comes with age, when I was in high school it mattered to me a lot more.

4) We all have strengths and weaknesses…name one of each.
strength: loyal and self-motivated
weakness: I talk too much and have no fast twitch muscle fibers

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Clash of the Genders – Males Racing Relatively Faster Than Women?

Male runners working harder than their female counterparts? Reading this article in the Evolutionary Psychology Journal makes it sound like these professors have come to just this very conclusion.
girl runner
Before all us runnerchicks get our bunhuggers in a bunch, let’s take a gander at their case evidence and logic. The prose is that the ‘average male’ is running relatively faster times than the ‘average female’ runners; that is to say that if you take the current World Record and leading times and then times that average runners race at, the the men are proportionally closer to these elite times than the women.

This is true despite the fact that the rate of increase in number of females who are now taking part in our sport is vastly more than the men. For example the increase in male participation from 1989 to 2009 in road races was 60% where for the women it was 498%. (for NCAA Track and Field it was 32% for the men and 98% for the women) Though there are other factors that quantify such a leap, namely females being ALLOWED to participate…that and for college, the inclusion of Title IX certainly has upped the numbers.

So going into the study, these professors hypothesized, “In any given race, about three to four times as many men as women ran relatively fast. The stable sex difference in relative performance shown here for non-elites constitutes new support for the hypothesis of an evolved male predisposition for enduring competitiveness.”

Through the study they built their argument into three points:
runner racing
* Males tend to be more competitive than women and thus push themselves harder. (I have raced against, run alongside, and befriended women who I know have more mental grit than many men. Females may not generally be as outwardly apparent in being ‘out for blood’ but after the gun goes off, there are no favors for friends…everyone wants the win.) The professors do point out that the numbers are higher for females going to races more as pleasure runners, being interested in just finishing and having fun regardless of the time, than for men.

* The number of males who are putting in a larger volume and higher intensity training program is more than for females. (It does take faster paced workouts to lead to faster race times, no doubt, so here it becomes a difference of goals between the sexes perhaps. Are more of the males interested in chasing a PR and then including the uptempo work versus wanting to run sheerly for the pleasure of running?)

* Males report keeping up that higher training level longer than women. (This could be affected by some factors: certain injuries, life ie: time off for babies, and anemia are all things women tend to suffer from more often than men. It takes consistent training to lead to improvement so these interruptions are doing females no favors.)

End of study findings: “These findings strongly suggest that the sex difference in performance depth can be largely attributed to more men being motivated to engage in the training necessary to run relatively fast.”
girl on track
I’m going to remain an unbiased party here and say that these are generalizations and there are exceptions on both ends. Numbers do show that the gap between the average runnerchick’s times and those of the elites is larger than for men. I think a part of that DOES come down to women having the self-security to believe they are possible of achieving things.

By nature girls grow up with no shortage of ‘mean girls’ chipping away at the old self-esteem. It take believing in your goals to see them actualized. Self-esteem is one of the biggest benefits of sports for females because here there is an arena where we CAN prove we are tough as nails and achieve feats we can be proud of.

Men and boys may have a leg-up on us in some respects with the self-esteem issue however I don’t feel that needs to be an accepted excuse. Instead, I know there are oh so many runnerchicks who are out there busting their @$$ and I hope in time the black and white numbers will reflect this.

1) What are your thoughts on this study?

2) What do you think may be factors in the discrepancy between the genders?

3) Male or female, when you go to a race what are your main intentions? Do you go for a PR and fast time or do you go the more pleasure runner route and don’t worry about the time?

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Would You Like Liver With That?

I was watching something last night that brought to mind a story. It was one of those times where you remember something that you had thought you had ‘forgotten’ about until some weird brain-spark dug up this nugget; I then spontaneously busted out in laughter looking like the dorkette I am.

Let me paint you a picture: a collective group of runners have been away on a altitude training camp. Needless to say some particularly high up places are not exactly natural tourist attractions (no offense to high altitude places, I said some of them of course not all!!) and so places to go, run, or even eat are skim.
girl on track
Our harriers had just come off of a tough track session…add in attitude and you can bet we were beat…time to get our grub on. Trolling around we wind up at a local, chain-wannabe-esque type diner and I’m blanking at the name. Think of like a Denny’s but they are doing their best efforts to ‘class it up’ just a wee bit. Gotta give them props for trying.

Counting coaches we were a big group, probably about twelve, and we made up about half the populous of that diner. Out come the menus and they had a rather wide selection if I do say so, and in the end the food was pretty good if I remember correctly.

focaica bread

They even brought us a bread basket...I don't think Denny's does that.


Amongst our training group were two Africans, one native of Uganda, and the other visiting in from Kenya. Now, comes the fun part. We get to Alex, from Kenya, and he is making a sort of stink face…nothing really seems all too appealing to him. He turns to Julius, from Uganda, and they exchange a word. (They are actually two of the funniest people ever and speak their own completely unique language, not even a dialect, it’s English but they have these saying, mashing of words in a sentence that only they makes sense of.)

Julius turns to the waitress and says deadpan, “Do you have liver an onions?”

Waitress, “Ummmm,” she’s trying to gauge if he’s being serious or just putting her on the spot, “yea, I think we might have some.”

Alex, “YES!!!!” he literally couldn’t contain his excitement, “I want liver and onions!!!”

Julius equally enthused, “Me too!!!”

They were like kids in the candy-store.

Different strokes for different folks, but if you had watched the fire on the track that had been Alex earlier you probably might have paused for just a moment and wondered if you, in fact, should try a helping of liver an onions.

But then you’d see the plates come out, and realize that those servings of liver HAD to be circa the 1920′s and thought better of it.

1) What are some of your favorite foods that others may find as odd or gross?
When I was little I LOVED to just suck on lemons. Ummm, don’t tell my dentist.

2) Do you live at sea-level or altitude?
Sea-level all my life, and I’m sucking wind any time I go up!

3) How was your weekend and what were some highlights?

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Faux Accents and Spreadin Some Ugandan Love



That’s flippin crazy, Mates! You know how I said I was going to be visiting with my friend from Australia, well, does it also happen to you that when you’re around someone with a certain kind of accent you find yourself start to adopt their way of speaking? This happens to me, and not with all kinds of accents, I don’t usually start slipping into a southern drawl anytime I’m around a Southern Belle (not that that happens much) but certain accents I just adore. Aussies, not that it is so much of an accent, but rather I love the words they use.

I do catch myself pretending I’m British sometimes when I’m around someone with a British accent, I’ve secretly always wanted a ‘real’ British accent. So after spending longer periods of time with these people I start to unconsciously start imitating them. I swear it’s completely unintentional and when I catch myself I’m always afraid they’ll think I’m making fun of them or trying to be funny. That’s not the case at all, so then I start talking really fast in an attempt to fool them into thinking that they didn’t just hear what they think they did. Ya, I’m smooth like that. ;)

Anyways, I wanted to post the pictures that I thought were taken of me and Eloise, but when I got home I found out that the person who supposedly took the pictures didn’t in fact push the button hard enough! ACK!! To her credit, it was Grace (the sweetest girl in the world) so I forgive her and I’ll just get some pictures taken later. (So these pictures aren’t obviously from yesterday.)

See, Eloise is in town for the big Prefontaine meet coming up and she’s staying with Julius and his wife Grace, both of whom are originally from Uganda. I love it how anytime I go over to Julius and Grace’s apartment I’m immediately overcome by the most amazing smells…it seems Grace is ALWAYS cooking something. She’s also got am awesome voice and usually sings while she cooks, she’s such a cutie. It’s funny because she knows just how much I CAN’T cook and told me that I’ll never find a husband. I laughed but then realized she was dead serious, definitely a culture gap there. Or at least here’s to hoping I don’t wind up a crazy old cat lady! :)

Grace is famous for her Ugali bread, it’s an Ugandan flat bread and I’m not really sure on all that goes into it but maybe I’ll try and find out, and she used to make it for all the runners that stopped by. But I felt bad because as fast as she was putting them out there they were wolfed down even faster, so I’m not even really sure she was actually able to eat any.

Julius is hilarious and should write a book full of just his sayings. Some really off the wall stuff that just doesn’t always make sense but you laugh regardless. Though, one that does make sense that he uses whenever we are chanced with sunny weather is, “The sun is smiling on us today.” That’s a good one that I like. Anyways he’s also got a love affair with honey that is like none other. I’ve seen him go through the entire head portion of those little honeybear bottles in a single sitting…no joke.

I feel really lucky to have gotten a peek into a few different cultures during my time here in Oregon, not only with Julius but also some other African and European athletes that have stayed for various training/racing stints. I’ve learned a lot, but some of it is really sad and you feel for these athletes, the things they’ve been through, their loved ones back home. The J-man (Julius) and Eloise have set up the Love Mercy Foundation and a charity for several orphans he is supporting back in Uganda that you should check out.

Wow, I have so much more I wanted to say, but this post is getting quite long! Back to Eloise, she’s raced in those compression socks and had a pair that I decided to try on. I’ve never tried a pair on, so I wanted to see what these things were all about. I also wanted to try it on because I thought they might help with my muscle hernia (aka the Kankle) leftover from my accident. Eloise likes them and they help promote blood flood, but she really relies on them the mose during long plane rides to avoid blood clots. Flying anywhere from Australia takes almost a day…not fun!

Okay, so she’s in the 5k at the Pre meet this Friday, which is going to be a pretty stacked race. Hopefully some good conditions will come about because everyone loves some smoking times. :) So wish her luck! And I also just heard Kara will be in the race too so we have two awesome people to send our collective positive vibes to! DO IT! :) Though, I guess technically they’ll be racing in the pre-Pre meet, because traditionally the Prefontaine Classic his mostly shorter stuff so all us long distance lovers get it on the night before.

Alright, mates, last thing. I’ll add my personal touch…though it’s far more boring (and slow) than what my friends are up to. Today on the treadmill I did my 3 mile warm-up, then 5 miles hard, and cool-down. Felt better than Sunday and thankfully so did my stomach. Then did my arm weights. Hope you all are having a great Tuesday! :)

1) Do you find yourself accidentally pretending you have an accent around others who really do?

2) What other countries have you traveled to?

I’m pretty lame, I’ve only been to Italy once and Canada…though I barely drove past the border so, ya…haha.

3) Do you find that you can tell how your workout/race is going to be off of your warm-up?

Sometimes. But then again I’ve had races/workouts that ended up being my best but in the warm-up I felt like total shiznit. I’ve also had the opposite happen.


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