Friday, April 28, 2017

Runfessions over Coffee

April is drawing to a close which means it's time for Runfessions! It's that monthly cleansing ritual, hosted by Marcia, that allows us to sanitize our soles (pun intended) in preparation for a fresh new month ahead. Grab a cup of coffee and sit down. I've got some good ones--we probably should be doing this over cocktails!





If we were having coffee, I'd runfess that I gave my husband this Squirrel Whisperer mug after an incident in our fireplace. His story is that one night a few weeks ago, there was a loud ruckus in the fireplace with sticks and grass falling down the chimney. Concerned that an animal was building a nest in the flue, he built a fire, "hoping" as he put it, to "smoke him out". I can't speak of what happened next but let's just say I found out about this after I caught him cleaning out the fireplace crematorium in the morning. Somehow, I slept through the whole thing. Don't you find that odd?


You may have noticed that I've been wearing some new, bright running clothes from InkNBurn. If we were having coffee, I'd runfess that yes, I've been splurging. And it isn't as if I needed more running clothes--although really, do we ever have enough? The truth is I have been feeling so bad about my running that I decided to treat myself to some fun gear. I love the way these clothes look and fit. Don't ever let anyone tell you that a great outfit doesn't give you confidence.


I haven't shared this on the blog but if we were having coffee, I'd runfess that I have been on a leave of absence from work for the past couple of weeks. I had been struggling with RA-related fatigue so much that I couldn't keep up with the pace at my job. I've been trying sort it out and figure out what I need to do. My husband (aka the Squirrel whisperer) has not been happy about it at all. He's afraid I won't go back. He says that if I'm too "sick" to work, I shouldn't be running either.


If we were having coffee, I'd tell you that since I was going to be off work for a while, I signed up for the newest Deepak and Oprah 21 day meditation. I figured I'd have no excuses not to meditate and maybe it might even help me! However, I runfess that I haven't done one session yet. I keep getting the reminder emails--I think we are on Day 19-- and I just move them to the trash. Releasing the mantras one message at a time.


I guess this isn't going to be a surprise to anyone, but if we were having coffee I'd runfess that while I continue to train for Grandmas Marathon in June, the probability of me actually running it is pretty low. I've actually told Becky and my husband that I'm not running it. Yes, the run/walk intervals that I've been using to complete my runs are working well for me, but they are not fast and they are not easy. Realistically, my head tells me that 26.2 is going to be really tough. My heart is having trouble saying no to 26.2 and meaning it. This week, I canceled my hotel room at the start line--there was an April 26 deadline for that one. I still have a room reserved in Duluth, which I'll need to make a decision on by May 16. I'm so DNS-averse that this is a very difficult decision for me. The struggle is real. Don't count me out yet, but don't plan on seeing me in Minnesota.


What would you tell me if you were runfessing? Have you ever DNS'd a race? DNS'd a meditation series? Do you buy too many running clothes? Any animal horror stories?

I'm linking this post up with Marcia as well as Fairytales and Fitness and Running on Happy for the Friday Five!


We had coffee today because I will be out of town next weekend and won't be able to link up with the Ultimate Coffee Date, hosted by Coco and Deborah! But be sure to check it out!

89 comments :

  1. I DNS'd the RNR NOLA marathon and Boston last year. You have to make the right decision for your health! We have a few fun animal stories from our lake house--we had retreivers who did just that a few times!

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    1. Nature always throws a loop at us, doesn't it? A few years ago it was the skunk invasion.

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  2. I had to DNS a half marathon last year due to injury. It's definitely not an easy decision to make, but I know you'll make the best choice for your body.

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    1. I'm pretty sure I know what I'm going to do, but I'm holding out for a miracle!

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  3. Ooooh a crematorium! Wow! I DNS'd 2 marathons in the same fall for hip issues (Twin Cities and Philly). It sucked to lose 2 entry fees but other than that, I didn't feel too bad about it. My heart wasn't really in either one. I've definitely blown off yoga challenges but never Deepak! Haha!

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    1. Yeah, I need to let it go but everything is upside down right now! I also have to figure out the work thing.

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  4. Haha - I love that squirrel scene! We watch that movie on most Christmases.

    And I'm sorry you've had to take a leave of absence and are on the fence about the marathon. I'm sure it's all so tough to swallow for someone as driven as you are :) I'd be the same way.

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    1. Thank you for getting it! I try to find the humor in everything but so much is uncertain right now. Just keep moving forward, right?

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  5. I have noticed your cute new running apparel! Sometimes you just "need" some new gear to feel better. I know it breaks your heart and your spirit to think that you won't make your race, but I applaud you for listening to your body and not beating yourself down at this point. Yes I have pulled out of race bc of injury, Hard at the time but knew it was the right thing

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    1. Yep, I know it's the right thing to do but I feel like everything has turned upside down right now! Time for more new clothes...

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  6. Hey, if new clothes lift your spirits, they are well worth it! Not sure what to think about your husb's lack of support on your leave of absence. There's a big difference between a 1 hour (or less) run at your own pace on your own schedule than even one full day of work. We'll miss you for coffee!

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    1. I think he's scared--financially, me not working leaves a big hole in our bank account. I'm hoping I can either go back part time or find something less stressful.

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  7. Oh Wendy, I am so sorry to hear that you are struggling more and more. You know the right thing to do for you so don't feel bad about it.
    I DNS Big Sur, but I realized that wouldn't have been a good race for me anyway.

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    1. Big Sur would have been much harder for me to pass on! My heart isn't in Grandma's as much, so I won't be sad about missing that particular race. It's just all the changes that are getting to me.

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  8. Well, I had a possum living (unknown to me) in my house for several weeks.

    Yes, I buy clothes I don't need. A new outfit always cheers me up. Go for it!!

    I've DNSed small races but never a big one. I'm sure you'll make the right decision. But it's tough to know. If only we had a crystal ball.

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    1. I think I know...but hey, a runner can always hope for a miracle, right?

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    2. fingers crossed for your miracle.

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  9. Oh, I'm sad ;-( Not just for the fact that you may be a no-show in Duluth, but I'm sad for what you're going through. You have to do what is right for YOU, though. I have DNS'd a couple of small races that I didn't have much time or effort (or $$$) invested in, and I should have DNS'd another last summer...which became a DNF instead. Hang tough!! We need to chat sometime!

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    1. I'd rather DNS than DNF. That I know. If I don't think I can finish, then I don't want to make the effort to trek up there and leave empty handed!

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  10. A little tug at my heart for you this morning, my friend. I hope you get some rest during your leave and are at Peace in your heart if that miracle doesn't happen.

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    1. I'll be ok. But I need to know that I gave it my all. It's the way I am!

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  11. I've been loving your Inknburn stuff, it's so colorful! I'm glad it gives you a lift.

    I know you've been getting some negativity from the non-runners in your life, which probably makes everything more difficult. I'd guess you probably want to prove them wrong and show that yes, you still can continue life as it was before. I tend to think that you're putting an awful lot of pressure on yourself. Now is the time to take care of yourself. I've been talking about mental strength this week, but being mentally strong doesn't always mean pushing through at all costs. Sometimes it means doing what's best for you, coming to terms with the changes in your health and life, and finding that running place that will work right for your mind and your soul. Armchair analysis from someone who has been there. ��

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    1. It's like you are in my head. I think I also want to prove to myself that RA isn't going to change me but the fact is it already has. I really appreciate your real talk, because that is what I need to hear. Thank you.

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  12. I totally understand you needing to take a leave of absence! I worked for an OB/GYN for 8 years as the office manager/bookkeeper and I can attest to the crazy fast-paced schedules they keep! I'm sure you could find part-time or even PRN work. It's hard to take care of others if you are tired and run down...don't feel guilty about any of this Wendy. You are doing a great job of navigating this new chapter, take you time and listen to your body and your heart. And you know what? It may be that you don't really "figure" this all out, but more that, given enough time, you just kind of "settle" in and become more comfortable with this new phase. We're all rooting for you girl! Hugs!

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    1. Here I've been feeling all wimpy and weak and it turns out that you all get it. I love this community. Thanks so much for your support and hugs!

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  13. You need to do what's right for you, period. Our jobs are so stressful, not just physically, but also mentally and emotionally. You need the break, and you need to keep running just to maintain your sanity. A lot has changed in a short period of time, and you were blindsided by it. You'll figure it out.

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    1. Our profession makes us so good at taking care of others, but not so good about taking care of ourselves, right?

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    2. Exactly! The same goes with being a mom. I literally finally was able to verbalize at the beginning of last year what I had been feeling for a long time. I felt like everyone and everything around me was sucking the life out of me, and it left me feeling...empty. Once I could verbalize that, I felt an instant relief and decided then and there that things were going to change.

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  14. I also runfess I have been splurging on running gear I don't "need." I have been really stressed and exhausted lately and my husband is going out of town on a "fishing" trip Sunday with his friends and family. I put "fishing" because it's mostly going to be a "drinking" trip LOL! I am a bit jealous because I could use a getaway. My friends my age are either too busy or live far away to get together. I'm sad you may have to DNS Grandma's but I understand. I've DNS'd so many races due to not feeling ready or something comes up for the kids. I may see you in Vegas! Tricia told me she was going and I'm really excited. Won't that be so much fun??

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    1. I'm so excited that so many of us are going to Vegas! I think it's going to be so much fun!

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  15. Oh wow Wendy! That is a whole lot of runfessions! The most hilarious one of course is the meditation one... I did it last year but am not doing it this year, and the Deepak meme I love... You take that leave of absence for as long as you need it. You have been putting in a lot of years. I don't think that you should do Grandma's marathon if it isn't the right thing for your body, but I'm actually curious about once in the future maybe walking an entire marathon! I'm always impressed with people who do it. If I could find someone to walk and talk with me the entire time, I'd try it once.

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    1. I like the run walk option and I think I could probably pull it off. Not sure this is the time to do it though. Gotta figure out the job thing.

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  16. Well now, THIS is a good post. Not the part about you being in pain, though. That part sucks. The squirrel thing and the moving of the meditations to the trash each day gave me the giggles. I would totally do the same thing and I'd buy new running clothes too. Dress for success, right?

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    1. It goes for off the road too--I could so easily see spending the day in my PJs, but I make sure to get showered and dressed every day.

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  17. I did DNS a race after my ITBS flared up really bad at my half in 2013. I had a 10k a few weeks later, and there was no way I could even walk it. It hurt my ego really badly, but it was the right decision, and I knew it. Once ray day came, I didn't regret my decision either, but it did hurt when I backed out.

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    1. Oh, you nailed it. My ego is hurting as badly as the rest of my body.

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  18. I have squirrel stories, but probably shouldn't go into detail. Suffice it to say, they wheeze when their lungs have been punctured by crazy little aggressive dogs. Ewwwww... And, we ARE the Griswolds... Hang in there my friend!

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    1. We will have to talk--I also have bunny stories...

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  19. I understand you 100%! My hubby is giving me the exact same look ! I think all he sees is a paycheck sitting on the coach drinking coffee while he leaves for work. Hey, he has a great job and healthcare sucks! I am trying not to worry about it! We need to get you to be comfortable about being you- I won't worry about the race! Have a great weekend!

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    1. I'm trying to accept my new reality and it is hard! I truly believe that my family is having trouble with the "new me" as well. So much has changed in such a short time.

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  20. You are finding your new normal, and if that means not working, or not working full-time, then that's what it needs to be. Yes, financial issues might need to be addressed, but this is your life. You have to do what is right for you. Everyone else, especially those blessed with good health, can learn to adjust.

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    1. I'm hoping my work will accommodate me in a lesser capacity.

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  21. Yes I DNS'd a 5k last August when I was still working through my knee arthritis episode. After last year, I swore I wouldn't sign up in advance for a bunch of races, but that didn't last long! lol! So I'm so far so good with 2017! As for a squirrel story, just this morning, I was finishing up my bike ride and coming to an intersection and I saw something darting at me and it was a squirrel that sailed up a telephone pole just as I was approaching it. I thought for sure i was being attacked! lol!

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    1. We live under the ruling of the squirrel nation around here. They have the run of the neighborhood. They used to intimidate my old dog! They'd yell at her and she'd run back to the house, tail down. Cocoa? Not so much.

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  22. I DNS'd the Honolulu Marathon last year. We were still there for Les' work and he rode with the cycling escort team. I runfess that I felt no desire to be running the course that morning! No regrets on that one.

    We had a bird build a nest in the wreath on our front door. Les pulled it out this week and then realized there was 1 egg and 3 live baby birds (probably less than a day old.) He put the nest back but they were all dead the next day. Oops.

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    1. Oh that had to be so sad! Do you think the mom wouldn't come back after he pulled the nest out?

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    2. I'm not sure. It also got very windy that night so they may have been blown around too much. The nest didn't look big enough for all those birds once they hatched.

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  23. Wow it's amazing you slept through the whole squirrel fireplace incident!

    I know taking a DNS is hard - trust me I've already gone down that path this year, but knowing every moment of the race was going to be a struggle for me just wasn't worth it. In the end, you'll do what's right for you.

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    1. Sleeping is my jam. It's something I can't get enough of.

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  24. I DNS'd a half marathon last year because of IT band and hamstring issues. It was a hard decision to make and I will runfess that I was sad on race day. Wishing you peace with making a decision.

    The squirrel in the crematorium is cracking me up!

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    1. Did he really think I wouldn't find out?!

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  25. Yeah, I've DNS'd all distances. Since you've already paid (according to the "Sunk Cost" theory) you actually won't be out any money if you don't run. Actually, you'll save money (ie. no transportation costs, meal costs, hotel, etc).! Hope you feel better!

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    1. I like your thinking! I had never heard of the sunk cost theory, but thanks to the magic of Google I now know what it is. Because I'd only lose out if I run the marathon.

      Pete, you always help me through these tough spots!

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  26. You must have been sleeping good to miss the squirrel incident!! In 2015 and 2016 I DNS so many races I had to defer due to injury, I lost count. It stinks but even though a hard decision, in the end I knew it was the right thing to do. Oh I runfess on the InknBurn too!! I so don't need any more running stuff, I literally have one dresser just of running clothes! But the sunflower top started it, couldn't resist! Sounds like it's a good thing for you taking a break from work, you have to do what's right for you and figure out this whole new normal for you. You have lots of cheerleaders in your corner cheering for you! xox

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    1. I didn't buy the sunflower top but it was so hard not to! Still waiting for the hummingbird to land in my mailbox...

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  27. A new outfit makes all the difference! I hope you are enjoying your time off work! and the much needed rest!

    I hope you find your answer on the marathon, I know you are very strong and resilient! you will come to the decision that is best for you!

    I have an animal story... when I was a newlywed, we lived in an apartment building, it had a washer and drier. In on of those many afternoons that I was alone, I went to finish my laundry, and as I turned on the drier, I heard a strange noise coming from the vents, like an animal scratching and fighting in the vents. But didn't think more of it. A few days later, I went to take out a load from the dryer, and the laundry stank like a dead animal. We called maintenance, and washed the clothes again. A bird had made their nest on the open dryer vent and as we turned in the dryer, it got sucked in and trapped.

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    1. That reminds me of the time I was driving to work and heard meowing from under the hood of my car...another story for another another time!

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  28. I'm sorry your RA is causing you not to be able to keep up at your job, but I am glad you are able and willing to take the time off to care for yourself.

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    1. I didn't really have much of a choice!

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  29. That squirrel story - oh my goodness! As for your leave of absence, you have to do what will help you get better. I hope your husband comes to understand that running is a form of medicine for you, and continuing to be active during your time off might actually help you get back to work faster.

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    1. I think he was worried I was using RA as an excuse to not work! He's starting to get it.

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  30. First of all, this dancing squirrel meme is too much. Seriously...

    I totally feel you about two things: 1) INB running apparel. Because like you, I splurged and I LOVE what I got. There's definitely something to be said about what you wear and how it makes you feel.

    and 2) I'm struggling with a DNS decision for my race on Sunday. I'm just not sure I'm ready for 13 miles after my hard 20-miler last weekend. In theory I could do it, but with my IT band issue I'm not sure it's a wise decision. So I feel you on that struggle. I'll be super sad if you aren't at Grandma's but I totally understand how these things go. But my offer stands firm -- I'll run/walk with you if you want to come and would like company! I'm not a speedy marathoner so it could be fun. :)

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    1. I'm so tempted to take you up on that offer! But my head keeps telling me no. We've got time, let's see how this all plays out.

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  31. I had to skip 2 races that I was signed up for last year because of my injury, but I'm glad i hadn't signed up for others farther out because it seems to be never-ending. Im sorry that you don't think you will be running the race. Good luck with the meditation...it really isn't so bad once you get used to it:)

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    1. I did restorative yoga yesterday, which is a form of meditation because you hold the poses so long! That was even hard for me, but I felt much more peaceful after I was done.

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  32. I'm sorry to hear you've had to take a leave of absence from work. Hope it is helping. I runfess I just bought a pair of capRI yoga pants tonight at Costco. I'm going to have to hide them away so my husband doesn't notice the new purchase.

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    1. I'm sleeping a lot more--so there's that!

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  33. Yikes on the squirrel - did it release a bad scent?! I almost bought new running tops the other day as they were on sale but I stopped myself and said "Do I really need more running clothes?" I totally understand where you're coming from!
    Haven't DNS'd any races yet but then again I don't race as frequently either. I can see how it doesn't sit well with you because you're a go-getter and the RA has definitely been a big obstacle with everything you want to do physically.

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    1. I don't know if it smelled because I was sleeping! My husband says it smelled "a little bit". The things that happen when we sleep!

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  34. I'm sorry to hear that your RA started interfering with your ability to work. I hope the time away is helping you to better figure out how to manage your symptoms. As for your husband saying that you shouldn't be running if you can't work, that's BS. Part of taking care of yourself is staying active and if you aren't active than your symptoms will likely only get worse. But you already know that.

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    1. Fatigue is a tough symptom to manage--the only thing that helps is rest, and I can't do that at work. I am starting to think about my job and options for returning to work in a modified capacity. We'll see if my employer will support that. I miss everyone at my job!

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  35. I am going to DNS my very first race this next weekend. I signed up for it, but my training was cut short with plantar fasciitis that I just can't shake after a long(er) run. I'm dreading the morning of the race and how disappointed I'll feel.

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    1. PF is the worst!! I have dealt with it on and off the last couple of years. I've never DNS'd a race because of it, but my training for Big Sur last year was less than optimal because of it. I sure hope you find a solution that works.

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  36. My animal horror stories are too numerous to mention. Our lot backs up to a creek and half woods so it's the perfect habitat for animals, especially the raccoons and groundhogs that live under our deck...

    I am so sorry that RA is being such a b!tch. We are all pulling for you! xoxo I DNS the 2011 Rock 'N' Roll DC because of my original back injury...

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    1. I grew up in the country but I swear, I have more animal stories here in the 'burbs than we ever did out there!

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  37. I love your coffee mug, haha!! I agree with you, one can never have too may running clothes!! I have noticed all of the fun colors you have been wearing and need to check out that brand :-)

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    1. Inknburn is addicting! I have to stop, but they need to stop making so many cute designs!

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  38. I didn't run RnR DC in March because of my injury. And yes I did notice your new clothes. :-) Love it! I love Oiselle clothes so if you want to splurge a bit more, let me know so you can save $20 and I can get $20 too.

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    1. Thanks but no thanks! I can't splurge any more! Don't tempt me! LOL

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  39. I'm sorry to hear you won't be running at Grandma's, but it sounds like you're making the best decision. I hope you're not feeling too bummed about it! And hopefully the intervals become more manageable as you continue to run. LOL at the Squirrel Whisperer mug!

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    1. I'm finding that I'm starting to like the run/walk intervals! Who knew?

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  40. I'm sorry to hear that running has not been so great lately. Sometimes we just need a break. I don't blame you for the splurge on Ink n' Burn. There stuff is gorgeous!

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  41. So sorry about the marathon, those decisions are difficult. You should listen to your body for sure.

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    1. More difficult than you can imagine. Pretty sure there aren't many if any marathons left for me...I'm going to do what I can tho!

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  42. I would invest in running clothes too. Anything to help me feel better. At the moment for me that is skin care and make up.... just feeling I need the extra care to ward off those wrinkles.

    With my 3:1 run/walk intervals, I finished the NYC marathon in 4:55... and I wasn't doing the running part that fast. Not sure I will do another marathon. Its not the race that scares me but the months of training. 2 in one year totally burnt me out.

    Sorry to read you are out of work, but sometimes it is just necessary. Life happens. We can't be 100% on 100% of the time. Give yourself the time you need. xoxo

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    1. I'm glad to say that I am feeling so much better--I'm planning on going back in 2 weeks and hopefully will do a better job of balancing everything!

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  43. Oh jeez, that's crazy! On the happier side, I love that scene from Christmas Vacation!
    Ugh, sorry about the RA-related fatigue. I can relate with my thyroid woes. I get SO exhausted! It can be hard to do anything sometimes. I understand the running though, it's so much more than just a workout!
    Sucks about the marathon...maybe you can make it work out? But, in the end even though a DNS is no fun, you've got to do what's best for you.

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    1. I'm actually ok with DNSing the marathon. After my half this past weekend, I know that it just isn't in the cards for me right now.

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