Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Pittsburgh Marathon Update

This is going to be a very emotional post for me. I ran the half marathon last year just to try it and to see if I could finish.
I did no training other then the cardio I did normally - which consisted of a zumba or hiphop class a few times a week and of course a run here and there but no FORMAL training schedule. I finished the half and aside from feeling really tired it was not TOO horribly painful. Here is my proof from the finish.

This year I was getting ready to register for the half again and started questioning myself. I am 45 years old and have the onset of psoriasis. Chances are pretty good that I am slowly going to have the painful part of this disease which is arthritis (pain in the joints). When this occurs, I will no longer be able to run.  This helped me change my decision and I decided that now is the time and I should try the full marathon before I am no longer able.

I downloaded the below training schedule from the internet and set off on my training (The check marks indicate completed runs to date). For the first two months I would run four days a week (according to the schedule) and also still do my zumba, hiphop and bodypump classes about 6 a week total.

After those first two months, I got a really sore knee and had trouble bending it. I decided that it is probably due to over use (I was working out over four hours a day on some days) so I stopped everything except the running and of course stretching.

I am sooo looking forward to getting back to my favorite place on this planet, StudioFit, after the marathon is over on Sunday! I MISS MY CLASSES SOOO MUCH!!

So, all of this to say...I am not one of those people that has been bit by the marathon bug. I am proud of all that I have done....I will do my best to cross the finish line on Sunday...I will never DO this again. It will be checked off my bucket list as completed and that will be that. I LOVE running, don't get me wrong, but after Sunday I will stick to 5Ks and 10Ks with an occasional half - HEE!
I have missed a lot of family functions for this training, including my niece and nephews birthday parties. I can never get that back and those are the things that I cherish today.

I am in this weird place because I just found out that pretty much my entire family is coming in from out of town for this marathon! This is them below!!!

I am sooooooooooooo blessed! I never expected that!
My Mom and Dad, sister and brother-in-law and their three kids and brother and sister-in-law and their two kids! AMAZING!!! I do not know what to say! I am humbled by the support that my family gives me constantly!! They have been through soooo much because of me and now, today, still support me SOOOOOOO much!!!
I am beyond blessed!! I also have many relatives and friends that are cheering me on from afar! Again, WOWSA!

As for Sunday, I keep having dreams that I do not finish!!! Scary, however, I know I will never do this again and this Sunday I will cross that finish if it KILLS me!! I have trained....I am strong...I am capable....I am worthy....and most of all I am blessed!!!!! I have the best family on the PLANET!!!!!

God, give me strength!!!

Fingers crossed that I cross on Sunday!

April Birchbox

 Here is the cute little box that I love to see arrive each month!!! If you have not looked into Birchbox yet, you can do so HERE.  It is $10 a month.  Out of my boxes that I subscribe to, this has become my least favorite but it is still fun to get - it's just that the others are a little more fun and have much larger product samples.  Gotta be honest right?!?!

Here is the card that lists everything enclosed...

This is energizing shampoo...can not wait to try this. I LOVE anything minty for my hair.  Maybe even enough for more than one wash?

Then some skin perfecting liquid. This is also a decent sizer sample this month.

This cute polish. I am going to try this on my toes for my next manicure. Love this color.

 Then I got this cute little compact. This is cheek and lip color. It is a cream. I will probably only try this on my lips.  Cute packaging though-never hurts that have a half naked man on your product!! HA

And lastly, a Kind bar. This is beauty sample box so I get thrown off every time they include food. I actually got chocolate last month.  I get the whole beauty comes from the inside out thing but I don't really want food samples in my beauty box....maybe its just me?!?!

 So, that's it.  If you are looking to send yourself a little present this month....here it is.  I love all the subscription boxes - I am WORTH it!!! HEE HEE

April Ipsy

 Here is a little peek into my awesome IPSY box this month!!! Ipsy always has GREAT stuff to try and almost always FULL sized samples!!! So worth the 10 bucks a month!!! If you haven't checked out Ipsy you can do so HERE.  Don't you deserve a little treat each month?!?! It is like a little $10 present I send myself each month!!

Every month they send your stuff in a cute little makeup bag...here is this months bag....sooo cute!

 Urban Decay!!! WHAT!!?!?!? Love this stuff!!! Really excited about this one!!! Almost full sized!!!

A little Root Pump...who does not love a little volume!?! This product is great!!! LOVE it!

This is great!! It is a little pod of lipstick/gloss.  The handle is a built in brush!!! It is a great color and such a great design - I will definitely invest in some other colors of this - it lasted a LONG time on my lips too!!

This is a little pod of eyeshadow.  It is a really pretty golden color...I will be trying this on my next night out!!!

 I was really excited to see this in the Ipsy this month! I have been wanting to try this at Sephora for a while now. 


Thanks again for all the amazing samples this month!!!

Monday, April 28, 2014

April StrideBox

 As always...Stridebox is my very favorite monthly subscription box!! I am not sure if that is because I am still training for the marathon or not, but it is always loaded with goodies to try out...each and every month it never disappoints!!

Here is the listing for this months box...I also like how it tells where you can buy it and the price for the product.

 Seriously!?!?!?! These were amazing!!! They did not last the day out!!!


 This was actually kinda tasty as far as a gel goes...I still prefer the salted caramel Gu one in last months box though!!

 These are in my desk at work just waiting until I have a craving!

 LOVE these drink mixes for pump and zumba!!! I will be back in a weeks time so I am saving these for then!!!

Another treat for when I am back into the Zumba routine!!

 And this awesome thing!!! This could not be better timing!!! I was just trying to figure out where I am going to put my gels during the marathon so I can reach them! I got the camelbak backpack that has pockets for them but I cannot reach gels from it unless it take it off and what a pain that would be when trying to complete 26.2 miles.
This will be perfect!!! I will store them in here and then shove it in the camelbak when then supply is used!!! AWESOME!!

Again, if you are a runner or into any sports and athletics; you owe it to yourself. It is like sending yourself a little gift each month and you can also try all kinds of new products!!!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Marathon Update and Countdown - 10 days away

Just wanted to check in and keep yinz all updated with my Pittsburgh Marathon status.

The marathon is exactly 10 days away!!

Wow! AMAZING!! After these past few months of training it almost seems like it is coming wayyyyyyy too fast. I am getting nervous!! This is my first marathon. I ran the half last year and decided that I need to do the full this year.

I M SOOO SCARED!  My family is going to come out for support and I am SOOOO worried that I will not keep up with the time constraints and will have to be scooped up on that bus. How embarrasing to have to ride the bus to the finish!!!

Actually, I am more worried that after these MONTHS of training - I will not finish?!?! No medal?!?!?!

Oh well, relax is all I can keep telling myself...it will be what it will be!!!

Here is the completed training so far....

So far since my training has started 15 weeks ago, I have logged a total of 375 miles of running (really jogging and walking - hee hee).

WOW!!! Please, Lord, let me finish!!! I NEED that Runner of Steel medal!!!!!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Easter 2014 Recap

Time for the weekend recap!!!  I figured I should actually write a post for a change instead of just lurking around and reading all of yours!!! HA

Sorry for the post absence AGAIN, but I have been engulfed in this marathon training and could not find the time or effort to write a post - lazy really!

 I hope you all had an amazing Easter - from the posts it appears that you have!

Mine started off right with ice cream from a place near my parents house. The whole family made it back to Mom and Dad's for Easter!!! I was soooo happy that we could all be together for the Easter weekend!!!!! I went up on Friday along with my older sister and her two girls. We made a trip out to Amish Country for fun before everyone else made it up there. We went to this amazing place in Walnut Creek, Ohio called Walnut Creek Cheese. It has EVERYTHING including the best ice cream on the planet! I get my chia, flax and hemp seeds there in the bulk section and they are soooo CHEAP compared to at home! LOVE that place!!! Also, have the best jellies, fruit, etc. YUMMO!!! Here is a picture of my salted caramel fudge swirl after one bite-ha....so delish!!!

After we got home, my niece Jessica and I took a little golf cart ride down the street from my parents to see the llama's. This is our selfie in the driveway!

 I made her wear the helmet for fun!!! The golf cart does not go more than 5 miles an hour even down a huge hill so she was about dying when I asked her to wear it. It was really for fun when we passed cars I would wave and embarrass her - they are used to this from me - ha ha! I think she actually started to enjoy it!! HEE

This is a shot of the cute little farm ....  it is a house down the street that has llamas, chickens, roosters and donkeys.

And this is a donkey close up!!! HA HA

I absolutely love the llamas!!!! They are soooo cute!  They have these adorable little bangs....this was my favorite of the three llamas!!!

I am still two weeks out from my first marathon so I had to do a training run on Saturday morning. I am tapering down for the next two weeks so at least it was only 9 miles this Saturday (last run of week 14). 

Here is my time...I am sure it looks really slow to those that are REAL runners but I am a very slow runner and I actually got a little faster for that amount of distance...yea me!!! My sister and mother came with me so I did not have to run alone. Because they live on a lake that is ALL huge hills...the only place to get my 9 miles in was a park near their house. The track was 1/3 mile each lap so I had to complete 27 laps. They did about 9 laps with me and then left to shop and were picking me up in an hour or so. They came back with donuts!!!! Only my family!!! And ate their donuts while I finished my run!!! LOL - Love those people!!

After that morning run everyone started arriving...

It was so beautiful out that we decided to get worms and take the kids to fish in the backyard.  We tried to dig out own worms but only found one skinny one after digging for 15 minutes so it was off to the store we went!!!  Here are the kids displaying the worms!!!

This is Aly (our little Diva) fishing...

And Ryan waving while getting a worm on his hook by Poppy!!

And this was the only fish caught the whole day! It was actually pretty big and Ryan was terrified and did not want to even get this close for the picture - ha ha!

Later that day we started with all the food prep including mom's famous deviled eggs - YUM!!!!!

Then that night it was onto egg decorating! The kids had a blast! The older girls helped their little cousins and all the eggs turned out GREAT!!!

It was a very serious process!!!!

I forgot to take pics of the Easter egg hunt after church but I am soooo happy that we managed to get this awesome picture of everyone!!! This is my parents, all of us kids and spouses, and all their grand-children! I LOVE this picture!!!!! Everyone looks sooo happy and it truly was an amazing Easter!!!!

Last, but not least, my siblings gave me this awesome wreath for my birthday!!! It is not for another month but they thought it was so cute I could use it early!!! I LOVE IT!!! Thank you so much - it is adorable!!!!

I feel sooo blessed by this holiday and having my whole family together!!! Thanks for everything wonderful in my life goes to God and Jesus!! He is risen!!!!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

ABC's of Me

I have seen this one going around quite frequently lately and thought it would be fun.  So here I go!!!!!!!!

Lord knows my postings have been lacking lately – HEE HEE!
A is for age - 45 (but I feel like 20ish!!!!)

B is for birthday – May 25th (yes, I will then be 46)

C is for color – purple!!!!!!!!!!! LOVE everything purple!!!

D is for drink – without a doubt has to be COFFEE!!!! My absolute favorite!!! Hot, cold, night or day!

E is for eyes - brown

F is for flashback – I miss high school!!! Crazy I know - but I truly LOVED high school!!!

G is for gent – There is not one currently! L  I wish I had one but I am just not willing to settle and the right one has not come along yet L
H is for hobby – running and Zumba and crafting! Oh, and Facebook…Is that a hobby?!?!? LOL

I is for indulgence - currently Cadbury Eggs (holla!) I ate a whole bag last night!!!!!!!! NOT GOOD!

J is for job – I work in IT – billing

K is for kiddos – only furry ones and scaly ones – two cats and LOTS of fish!!!

L is for love – family and friends!!!!!!

M is for music – any and all! I love everything from country to rap to my favorite which is Kidrock!!!

N is for nickname – Annster is my nickname…although no one calls me that but me! HA HA  Also my relatives all call me Annie so I guess that would really be it. HEE

O is for one wish – Do God’s will more than my will – some days are better than others

P is for pets – cats and fish – answered under children! Same thing for me!

Q is for quote – one day at a time

R is for residence – the great state of Pennsylvania

S is for siblings – two sisters and a baby brother

T is for temperature – the hotter the better!!!

U is for university – Graduated from IUP but attended CUP and Community College too

V is for vehicle – love my little Honda Civic!

W is for worst habit – eating when I am upset or stressed out

X is for xrays – no clue what I am supposed to answer here! HA HA (My last x-ray was of my back at the chiropractor if that is the question)

Y is for yuck – SPIDERS….soooooooooo yuck!

Z is for favorite zoo animal – I would have to say the penquins...I love them!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Tekko 2014

Time for my first (and probably only ever) TEKKO post.

I had an interesting experience this past weekend in Pittsburgh. I was invited to go with a good friend of mine to TEKKO 2014 at the David Lawrence Convention Center. It was a convention for people that enjoy Japanese Amine cartoons, etc. As you will see in my pictures, EVERYONE showed up!!! My friend Jenna loves Attack on Titan which is a popular comic series. She was dressing up as Hanji Zoe from that comic.

First, this is me and my friend Jenna (I am on the left)

This is Jenna dressed up as her character (Hanji Zoe)...hee! We actually made those boxes that she has on each side of her and the swords out of foam. It took many a lunch hours at work!

And another...

And now onto the pictures. This is how you know you are at a comic book convention...boys (Men) actually buy these pillow cases to sleep with...cant get a woman???...then sleep with a pretend one on a pillow?!?! Whatever works for you! HEE

This was waiting for us when we were in line...and yes, it is a man. His chest looked really, really real!!!!!!!!

These people looked amazing - I think Jenna said they were Star Trek people.(They were actually Star Wars people - this has been edited thanks to a reader- thanks for the information Jacquie!)

This person is supposed to be from Dead Pool...I have no idea what that is...this is all according to Jenna.
 She swore to me that furries would not be there. I have heard of furries at conventions here in Pittsburgh and they have a pretty scary reputation (sleezy, etc.) so I try to steer clear. Well, she lied! There is a furry!!!

Here is the Hobbit! They looked awesome!

And another of the Star Wars group - pretty neat!!!

And lastly, Jenna ran into someone that was dressed as a different character in Attack of Titan so we had to get a shot of them together. Cannot remember this person's name. Awesome, hugh?

It was interesting and I am glad I went. I will try everything once. The only downside was that you could not get a one day pass for this thing! You had to pay $50 for the entire weekend!! Little steep for someone like me who was just going to check it out. So, I would never go back again unless they did a one day pass for $20 then the people watching would be worth it. But, for this one time, Jenna was worth it!!! We had a fun day all in all!

ICU Nurse it is

 Hi everyone!! I am just here checking in quickly. I almost feel bad checking in as it has been an eternity since I posted!!! UGH! Life has ...