Friday, August 31, 2007

How did this happen?

It is Friday. How did we get here? Actually right now it is Saturday...again...what? Time does not sit still and wait for keeps going whether you acknowledge the forward motion or hold the rails for dear life trying to get things to slow down. What I don't understand is how exactly after five rather slow years at times, that the past week flew by with out me as much noticing it...not good, not good. Somehow today happened...movers showed up, car was packed life currently fits in two suitcases (barely). And now...

I'm in limbo.

I've moved, but not moved, I am going on vacation and have no real 'space' yet to call a new home...and its great. Actually freeing to just not be attached to any space for a little while. Soon i will want to have more of a grounding, but sometimes it's good to uproot and wander a bit before coming back to the nest.

Only bad thing is my training for my half marathon in Oct has shall we say...ugly. I don't like it. But...whatever, it's more to hang with some family/friends and do whatever. It'll happen. I can't worry about the fact that it isn't what I wanted in my training...too much chaos in my life at the moment to worry about that. It is what it is...and that's that.

Ohhhhh...and TOMORROW will be a bizarre going away/graduation party. As i've said before, a triathlon of sorts will ensue. Details later.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

It. Is. OVER!!

And the verdict is....I PASSED...and am done!! Woohoo.

The actual defense went fine. Hardly any insane people to ask inane questions were there, so it actually wasn't as horrid as I imagined.

Whew...i need a LOT of sleep now...5 years is a lot of time to make up for ;-)

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Funny people

People are bizarre. According to one of the most...ahem...goofy ones I know...apparently I am "Quirky, with a strong personality". Yes, i am a bit quirky...but apparently a "Get-it-done" sort of personality translates into a "strong personality"...whatever that means...

I'm still alive. I defend on Thursday and have oscillated between doing "OK" and wanting to puke all week. I attempted to run today and ran two miles...turned around and walked back home two miles. Could not put together the mental whathaveyou to run. Weird. Running is stressing me out on top of being way stressed out...therefore...not working for me. This weirdness better stop after Thursday.

My housemates are planning a going away party...and one suggested the theme to be "my personal psychosis's". It might involve triathlons, aliens, singing about food, dancing about plastic, singing about plastic, sports movie themes and I'm sure other weird things. OK when you put my psychosis just out there...i can see where 'quirky' comes from. :-)

Oh...but GUESS what!!...we are going to have a 'triathlon of sorts' at the party...i'm excited.

Still happy(even with the nerves)...i like the new paradigm.

Friday, August 17, 2007


Yes, that is right folks the drama...the pain...the insanity...of graduate school is starting to wrap up.
The book (aka the stupid dissertation) has been turned in to my committee. I have less than a week until the public 'flogging' as I like to call it...or my public 'defense'...WHATEVER. People get to publicly be mean to me...that sounds like lots of fun. But it means that i am done! (except corrections for stupid dissertation) that's worth something too.

I am exhausted, but can't seem to sleep. Yesterday I even made it out to Boston to a friend up who was up for a conference and stay with some other was exactly what I needed. I needed to just turn the stupid thing in...and GET OUT and be gone...and while I was barely functioning it was worth it. Over the past five years people have asked me "Do you want to...(insert fun things to do)"...and I have had to reply "yes...i want to...but I cannot (because research is eating my brain out)". Last week I had people inviting me all over the place...and no fun was had by me. So yesterday, even in my utter exhaustion...driving almost 2 hours to go hang out with friends one last time before it became a lot longer of a trip to see any of them was...divine.

I think the best part was waking up this morning...and discovering a new outlook. I woke up...happy. I've been 'happy' about things during my past 5 years, but it's been awhile since happy was an actual constant emotion to just be happy. No reason needed. I know that might sound somewhat overly dramatic, but let's just put it hasn't been fun. But somehow...the end is very, very near.

And as the end nears, i am reminded that I had 4 triathlon training goals from last year. My number 1 goal:

1)To graduate. Preferably in Aug, but if not by Aug, then DEFINITELY by Dec.

The amazing thing is that in order to achieve this goal I now have come to realize that what was actually necessary for this goal to be achieved was a whole lotta luck in the lab....and an adviser on my side. If those two are not on an experimental scientist's side 'forgettabout it'. Fortunately, once the opportunity of a job took form in adviser practically shoved me out the door right at the same time of experiments actually working. It was a miracle and I am thankful.

The fact I did not come close to actually accomplishing any of the other 3...only proves that I am not a multitasker (and actually...studies have shown that most people are not multiaskers even if they think they are)

Now...i think I need a nap. :-)

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


I am...err...supposed to be doing something else...but i need a break :-) (Yes dissertation turn in is TOMORROW...but i'm losing my here is fun break)

Paul tagged here goes

Job's I've Held:

Quizno's amazing sign holder
Dorky Scientist I: (cardio toxicity of chemotherapeutic drugs)
Supah Doopah inventor of fly fishing accessories
Clerk for a mortgage company
Dorky Scientist II: (research into how to make cardboard boxes more recyclable)
Crazy Grad Student
Instigator of Science insanity with K-12 kids

Movies I can Watch Over & Over:

X-Men...all of them
Sweet Home Alabama
The Wedding Singer
The Bourne Identity

Guilty Pleasures:

Chocolate (Dark)
Ice Cream
Did I say Chocolate?

Places I Have Lived:

New Zealand
And Soon...California (less than 3 weeks!)

Shows I Enjoy:

Grey's Anatomy
Discovery Channel

Vacation Spots:
(is this favorite places i've been?)
Czech Republic
Mountains of Idaho...or any part of the Rockies
New Zealand

Favorite Foods:

Pad Thai

Websites I Visit Daily:

Body Parts I have Injured:

Knee and ankle (ultimate frisbee accident)

IT bands issues

Awards I've Won: for violin, academics...

Nicknames I've Been Called:

other than my name shortened? none

ohhh, i'm supposed to tag a buncha people...but i'm too tired to think :-) (Motto of the week: Sleep is for sissies)

So i'll tag just one: Nistrik

Monday, August 13, 2007

Just when you thought...

Just when you thought...people couldn't get ruder, more insane or well...more delusional...they prove you wrong.

I tend to believe in the best in people...I never thought that trait could be such a detriment ...and then I came to graduate school...

Thursday is dissertation turn in!

And 10 days til defense.

totally in a cold sweat now

Thursday, August 09, 2007


What I like about having a goal and training for it is that a workout on a schedule goes from something that I should do...or I need to get something that is essential. It becomes a non-negotiable. I know what needs to be done in order to achieve a goal. I understand there is no 'cramming' when it comes to endurance sports. And then my training becomes something that must be done in order to achieve what I want to do and in a way becomes ingrained into me...and must become a part of my comings and goings because I think about it a lot and schedule it and dream about it. And then the training starts to become essential to me. Unfortunately it is too easy to be sidelined from these things and somehow I lose how essential it is to me...and I easily forget how much a part of me it is.

Got in some more runs this week, they weren't supposed to be anything spectacular...main focus is my endurance baseline on those ones. But they were good.

Few things I've noticed is that whenever I start a training program that first goodness EVERY freaking bit of me that has ever had an injury thinks that it has some say in what I do. Sheesh. Stretching and evaluating has ensued...but i also know this always happens the first week of training. It'll pass.

keep on keeping on

Monday, August 06, 2007

tempo run of sorts

So i've sorted out my 1/2 mary schedule for my Oct race and have put together a marathon training schedule of sorts for a Jan marathon.

I had planned to have a 4 mile tempo run today with a mile warm up and a mile cool down. Well massive side stitch at mile 4 along with insane humidity sorta hampered the training...but it's early in the training cycle...and i've got tons of time to get stronger.

So the stats(although I erased them off the from memory):

Mile time Avg Hr
1 11:11 145
2 9:18 165
3 9:18 170
4 11:xx 153
5 9:48 170
6 cool't get my heart rate down as it was so humid out.

What's cool is that in a few weeks time...i am certain I will see improvement with consistency. I was being a little hard on myself today because I didn't finish all 4 miles the way I had wanted to at LT...but then I doesn't really matter. I split two evenly...and have room for improvement on the other two. Big deal. Training is cool in that if you apply consistency to your program you WILL improve. My goal over the next few weeks is to be able to do all 4 parts of the tempo part...evenly...and then work towards negatively splitting the last two...someday. That day doesn't have to be soon its just what I hope strive towards: To be stronger as I finish a run and not fade at the end. That comes with consistency...that comes with practice and repetition.

As my (very Italian) violin teacher in college said in a heavy accent: repetition, repetition, repetition.

It will happen with consistency and repetition. I know it will.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

and a runn'n

So curiosity got the better of me today. My training has been 'meeh' this summer with attention diverted elsewhere, and so i haven't been really that clued into my running. I'd been noticing my running was alright. I've been pretty chill about paces this summer, it's not my focus. Recently I've been seeing my long runs (of 6 miles) times drop between the 10-11 mpm pace. So I was curious how my cardio was holding and what I can just 'see' from how the 'engine' (aka...base endurance) is doing compared to the actual speed as speed will increase as endurance gets better (to a point) and then speed work needs to come into play. There is an interplay between endurance base and pushing the speed work.

I digress...anywho...basically the goal: 6 mile run, first mile warm up, next mile 150bpm, next mile 155 bpm, next mile 160bpm, next mile 165 bpm, next mile as fast as can I felt like dealing with...and a cool down.

It broke down like this
mile avg HR time
1 147 11:53
2 154 11:07
3 160 10:28
4 165 10:05
5 176 8:36
6 was more of a walk-run-walk for 13:50

I think this a great place to start from as I prep for a fall 1/2 marathon...and a winter marathon. I'm rather pleased considering everything that's going on.

And...i should was WICKED hot...90 degrees...lots of humidity...shoulda run in the morning.

Got some choices...

So...i'm sorting out my choices for running and all that good stuff.

I do know this: in October I will be running the Long Beach 1/2 marathon

But as far as a marathon...the choices the choices. Thanks for all of you weighing in on the marathon debate...all comments even the cheeky ones are welcome (maybe ;-) )

I think i've tentatively decided on a winter marathon. are the possibilities. Please feel free to weigh in if you have done any of them, or are familiar with any of them.

OC Marathon 01/06/08

Redding Marathon 1/13/08

PF Chang's Rock n Roll Arizona 1/13/08

Habitat for Humanity Diamond Valley Lake Challenge 1/19/08

Carlsbad Marathon 1/20/08

Surf City Marathon 2/3/08

LA Marathon 3/2/08 No wetsuit girl pointed out in my earlier post this may be not advised by the surgeon general's warning...and it looks like you run right though a concrete jungle...not really my choice.

In the process of putting together a schedule for a race in roughly 24 weeks...