Archive for May, 2010

On the other side…

Posted in 40 mile run, motivation, photos with tags , , , , , , , on May 30, 2010 by afuntanilla

‘Usually an insect will enter into a Cocoon so that they will be protected from a harsh or unfriendly environment.’

So…the accident happened in late Aug 1983. I was 12. I think I was in the hospital for about 6 weeks, including my 13th birthday. Here’s one of the only pictures I have from that day. As crazy and tragic as everything was, I have to tell you how happy I was during my hospital time…at least the parts I remember.

See, I went from car accident to hospital and I don’t recall anything of the actual event. My last memory on that quiet Sunday was stopping at a McDonalds approx 5-7 miles from the site. I gained consciousness 2 days later and awoke in ICU. I missed the funeral.(this would come back to haunt me, literally!)  I never saw anything or had to deal with anything. I was healing and friends & family came to visit all the time. I had an AMAZING group of nurses, doctors, and fellow patients who I became close to. Whenever I look back on that time in my life, all I remember is love. Feeling so loved. It was like I was in a little cocoon…being protected from what lie out there in the big, bad world.

The picture above was my birthday present from the nurses, (i think). It was my very first boom-box. A JVC Single Tape Deck AF/FM Boom-Box. Man, I loved that thing. The staff also rented the FLASHDANCE video, wheeled my bed into the “game room” and a bunch of us enjoyed movie afternoon. An awesome birthday.

Too bad the above picture doesn’t show my full body. Both legs were in traction from broken femurs and I also had broken left arm. By the time the photo was taken, the pin was removed from my arm and I was undergoing physical therapy . I had actually crushed my elbow so full extension was the main issue. Docs had removed chest tube from my collapsed lung and removed the staple stitches from abdomen area where they had removed my spleen. When I had gained consciousness in ICU and looked at my stomach area and saw the staple stitches, I was mortified. It looked like there were insects on my stomach in the formation of a sideways T. Creepy, ugly, mysterious. Maybe if I get brave enough, I will take a photo of the scar and post. Hey, you gotta show your war wounds, right?? I love scars!!

So, now you know a bit more of what happened and why i feel so freaking LUCKY!! and Blessed. Do what you gotta do. Live how you want to. Don’t let anyone ever stop you from doing what you want to do…most of all YOURSELF.

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Let’s get it Started!

Posted in 40 mile run, motivation, travel with tags , , , , , , , on May 27, 2010 by afuntanilla

As I thought about my upcoming 40th birthday, of course i thought of how to celebrate. First of all, 40 is and has been a significant number because when i think of 40, i think that’s how old my mom was when she died. So, here I am…just 4 months away from being that same age. To me, that is just crazy. Wild. Weird.

She died on a late Sunday morning while we were driving home from a fishing trip. A peaceful Sunday along Hwy 580 near Castro Valley turned deathly silent after the crash, boom, and bang of the multi-car pile-up.

I got pretty well banged up in the accident. After 6 weeks in the hospital & another month or so in a full body cast, I literally learned how to walk again. I’ll never forget those first moments of taking steps on my own. Man, what a THRILL!! There I was in grandma’s living room, wearing my blue & bright pink pajamas, gingerly putting one foot in front of the other. I was walking again and I felt free.

I’m a runner. I have to tell the story above because I continue to feel much gratitude that I can run. I listen to folks all the time of all sizes, shapes, & ages tell me how they wish they could run, but cannot because of knee problems, back problems, etc… So, it is never lost on me how lucky I am. Every day.

So…what the hell does all this have to do with turning 40 and a birthday…?  Well, after many thoughts and ideas about how, when, and where I would celebrate,  I made a decision. I have decided to go back to where it all kinda began for me; San Leandro, CA. Even though I was born in San Francisco, most of my childhood memories are from days spent in San Leandro. To commemorate my 40th year, I have decided to run 40 miles starting in San Leandro at the address of where I grew up and go from there. I recently mentioned my idea to a friend and her response was: “wouldn’t you want to do something more fun?” – I think my response was: “well, i want to do something meaningful and this is meaningful.” And I actually think it will be fun….fun because my hope is that many of my friends will come out and support me at some point during the day, fun because it will be like some big trip down memory lane — and although some of those memories are difficult, they contributed to who i am and for that, i give thanks.

This will be a run of celebration. A celebration and reflection of 40 years and pay tribute to those people and places who have been with me along the way.

There will be many people to thank that day, including mom, for without her, September 25, 1970, would not have been possible.

I hope you will follow me as I train and plan for the celebration. Cheers!!!

just Thrive, baby

Posted in cooking, motivation, random, travel with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on May 25, 2010 by afuntanilla

My nutrition continues to fall into the Vegetarian/Semi-Vegan category. I’ve been continuing to read & enjoy THRIVE. Last night, I cooked Salmon for the first time ever! Hey…I’m a slow learner! I just sauteed some veggies with it in a skillet with some olive oil & a little turmeric. It was not GREAT, but it was ok…for now. I will learn to perfect. I will need to invest in a few new kitchen items like a good skillet (i had 2, i threw 1 out last night post dinner) and a food processor. I’ve been using a lot of Amazing Grass’s products;
the bars and then some of the powders in my smoothies. All pretty tasty, actually.
A typical smoothie is:
Banana
Frozen Berries (blackberry, strawberry, blueberry)
Almond Milk
Scoops of Amazing Grass Hemp Protein or their Amazing Meal Blend
*Spinach* sometimes

I find that I am having success with changing my nutrition this time around because I am using the book as a resource and then looking for additional resources. I’ve really noticed feeling “lighter”, not so heavy & bloated…and i understand now what types of food and food combinations can really lead to those sensations. Needless to say, I like the “lighter” feeling.
I also like just the difference in my focus; before I would focus on “cutting out sugar, alcohol, meat..etc…”. Now, my focus, isn’t really about cutting those things out…but rather “what do i want to consume that is nutritious?” It might be all semantics, but it makes a difference. Am I making sense?

Not a whole lot going on in the running arena…only running a little – like 15 miles a week. I’m thinking of some plans for the rest of the year and into next year. I hope to make some decisions soon and will keep you posted.

On a brief travel note, I went to NYC on Friday/Saturday. Saw a 2 person play called “Dusk Rings a Bell” w/ the amazing and gorgeous Kate Walsh. (gushing) It was awesome. The play was touching, funny, poignant, surprising & very thought-provoking. I was 3rd row from stage at a tiny, intimate theater. While in NYC, I also spent time with an old friend…someone I had not seen in 27 years. Even though I was only in town for a tiny amount of time, we managed to share 2 meals and coffee together. It was pretty neat to say the least. I’m actually still pretty full from our visit, from the entire trip. Maybe I will write more about it all later…

For now, if you want to read something inspiring, copy & paste this & read. pretty great.
http://www.scottjurek.com/blog/

Be well. Live big. Rest. Love.

Cheers!

hills, nutrition, shoes, etc..

Posted in cooking, photos, road, shoes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 17, 2010 by afuntanilla

Mid week I did some more speed and hill work. Here’s a couple of photos of the 2 hills I have been running my hill sprint repeats. These workouts are not lengthy, but they are strenuous and I feel damn satisfied afterwards.

The first Hill (pic #1) is longer. The 2nd hill (pic #2) is shorter, steeper. I’ve been running sprint repeats of both.

Saturday I ran a short, hilly, 3 miler. Sunday, I ran a flat 4.5 miles. The heat & humidity are creeping higher. You would think after living in Atlanta for 10 years it would be a non-factor, but it is very much still a factor. Mixed in with the small amount of miles has time at the gym. Just trying to get stronger & faster.

In honor of my beloved San Francisco Giants, I wore these KSWISS shoes today that i picked up on my trip in March for LA MARATHON.

I have 3 pairs of KSWISS shoes; the ones above which are KSWISS Tubes and 2 pairs of KSWISS K-Onas – one blue pair & one red pair. I love them all. The K-Onas are very light, but still have great support. The Tubes are heavier with more cushion. I wore ASICS for years, but over the last year, I have found a new love with these shoes.

One of the things I have written about in the past is nutrition. Often times, i will decide, for different reasons, to cut certain foods from my diet. Sometimes it has been sugar, meat, alcohol, etc…Well…as it has happened over the last month, I have just been “organically” (no pun intended) reading more about nutrition and understanding more about how different foods affect my body. So, in a nutshell, I have been eating almost entirely a fresh food/vegetarian diet. I picked up this awesome book called THRIVE by Brendan Brazier, a Vegan Triathlete. Its been a very informative & compelling read. I’m enjoying learning more about what I put into my body. One of the best things about the book is that it contains a lot of very SIMPLE recipes. (if you have followed me…you know i need SIMPLE!!) My goal is not to adhere to a Vegan diet — there are certain items i am just not willing to give up…like 1/2 & 1/2 in my coffee. 🙂 The main thing for me is to understand what I am eating and why and make choices that are healthy for me. I’ve been enjoying putting together the new recipes and shopping for different items. One of the most glaring things i have noticed since modifying my nutrition is the “lightness” i feel. It’s amazing how eating certain foods just make one feel ridiculously heavy! I look forward to more reading, more learning and healthy eating.

I working on a new dream…a new plan. Will announce soon.

Stay strong. Train hard. Train smart. Love and Live BIG.

hey little butterfly

Posted in road, trail, travel with tags , , , , , , , , on May 11, 2010 by afuntanilla

Did some short, high intensity workouts during the week on Wednesday & Thursday. Wednesday was treadmill + weights. Thursday was sprint hill repeats outside. The Hill sprints were also on a day when it was about 88 degrees, so i am especially pleased with that workout. I want to be faster. Bottom Line. Faster on flats, faster on hills.

Saturday – ran 3 miles at 8:43 pace. flat and some small up/down areas

Sunday – went back to Kennesaw and ran same 5 mile route I ran last weekend with Jeff. I pushed the entire way. Didn’t stop at all. (last week, i stopped about 2-3 times). My time was a full 3 minutes faster than last week. THRILLED. There was low humidity yesterday so that definitely helped! Those 5 miles are no joke.

I felt happy and free and had fun. I wasn’t smiling or nothin’, but i was happy inside. A runners happiness. You know what I’m talkin about…

I’m glad to see some of my different workouts paying off.

I had been thinking of going out to Bay Area to run Double Dipsea on June 26th…but flights are over $400. yikes. I might just take the $ and buy a new SUUNTO watch I have my eye on…

Lastly, I saw a very beautiful blue and black butterfly while I was on the trail. At one point, it was right on front of me, weaving right and left…as if it were my guide…

Cheers —

to each his/her own

Posted in motivation, photos, quotes, trail with tags , , , , , , , , on May 3, 2010 by afuntanilla

“Every single thing you ever achieve will come as the result of something you attempt. So get busy making those attempts.” RM

Everyone’s got their own way of feeling/being spiritual. You might go to church, temple, practice voo-doo, chant with monks or whatever….

A lot of times, Sunday running for me is how i get part of my spiritual need met. And when, it happens to take place at a track, well…you might just say that for me, that is holy ground!

Saturday did a challenging and invigorating track session here:

Talked a few minutes to a fella who had just finished his workout. He was 61 and only had his running shorts on. Looked as if he had no body fat. Chiseled legs, arms. Asked me; “why did you stop? you were crushin’ it”. Ah…he was so flattering! He said he only runs 2 races a year now. He has had 2 spinal surgeries. Could have fooled me. Dude was awesome.

My health fortune is not lost on me.

Spent some time on these after the track:

The good about the track: you feel fast and it’s over pretty quickly.

The bad: it hurts.

The best: my “church”

Sunday went up to Kennesaw Battlefield and met my buddy, Jeff. We ran what I thought would be an easier part of the trail….um…think again; it was harder. 5 good, challenging miles in the humidity. Well, i guess it’s back…like I told Jeff, “this ain’t no winter weather”