6'0 tall, former athlete, mother of 3, struggling to keep up on the RUN of daily life.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Tradition Continues

Since about 2003 we have gone to the local Corn Maze at Spooner Farms.  There is a different theme every year and Muscle Man guides me through, I am horrible with maps.  It has become a tradition that I look forward to as the leaves change.  We also started taking a family (timer) photo on the bridge over the corn the past few years.  Both boys even completed the maze while in my belly.  We will head to the farm this weekend.. I can't wait!!

This has nothing to do with running but is a reminder to create traditions and make them a priority.  Time goes by so fast...and you may be missing out on the chance to create amazing memories.

  • What traditions do you have in your family?


Thursday, September 27, 2012

3 Things Thursday

Holy Wow is it Thursday already?  I keep meaning to sit and type a post…but my new job and schedule really don’t lend to personal time on the computer.. Once a week is about all I can commit to, I miss my journal and connecting with friends. But I am living life instead of being chained to the computer in my off time.  Anyhow..this is what is new in Tall Mom Land.

1.  On Saturday we planned to run 8 miles pushing the Little Studs in the Double Jogger.  It felt and looked like Fall.  This time of year on the trail is GREAT, but I will be sad when all the leaves are gone.  The run was rather uneventful, we pushed it a little until with 1.5 miles left we got a FLAT TIRE.  Yep!!  I knew it would happen someday.  So Muscle Man ran ahead to finish off his 7 miles, I followed and finished up mine, then we all walked as a family.  It takes a lot of time to walk 1.5 miles with our Little guys, but we made the most of it and had a nice family walk.

 2.  Saturday afternoon/evening I had the pleasure of attending Miss Chelsea’s wedding.. Chelsea and I met at a "Run Like a Mother" book signing a couple years ago.  She admitted that she stalked me a little, which I thought was cute.  We became fast friends, I coached her to her first Half Marathon Finish line and she took care of us at Seattle Rock n Roll.  I love this lady, and continue to be amazed at how she has transformed the past couple years.  The Wedding was PERFECT and made even better because I got to hang with my running pals and their spouses all dressed up.  What a GREAT night!  We had so much fun, countless laughs and silly dancing.  Blogging has brought amazing women into my life and I am so thankful for that.

Jill, Me, Zoe and Kerrie
3.  On Mondays I will be playing volleyball in an all-female league.  I played a couple years back in a co-ed league.  My team did really well, but I am not a fan of co-ed, I prefer to compete at my level, if that makes sense.  The first game was this week and I LOVED IT!!  I felt confident and strong while playing, my team won both matches, starting the season off great. The rest of the week I have been super sore, but I can’t wait until next week.  Due to the soreness I have not run all week, hopefully tonight we will make it out.  Muscle Man ran solo yesterday pushing LS#2 and got a 10K PR, which is pretty darn cool.

  • Overall life is great... I am looking forward to going to the Pumpkin Patch and Corn maze, shopping for Christmas Gifts and some MUCH NEEDED Holiday time off.  As the weather changes so will our running, but I have the gear to keep me running regardless of the temp outside..

Coming up on Tall Mom:
-Reviews of ROCKIN Northface boots thanks to Onlineshoes.com
-Goals for the Run Wild 5K on 10/6
-An Honest post I keep meaning to publish

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

You Go Girl Half Marathon 2012

I have been running, not following a schedule just running at night with Muscle Man at whatever pace feels right that day.  When we ran the Over the Narrows 10 miler a couple weeks ago I got a little excited....I felt light and knew I could have gone faster.

As You Go Girl got closer I got nervous... I have not been nervous in forever, because I have not run a fully solo half in so long.  I knew that this was my race and it sorta scared me, in a good way.  We have not trained for Speed but going in my "A" goal was to get a sub 1:50, I would give all I could that day to get there.  I knew that all systems would have to be ON..

I got to the Start area easily, doing the same race 3 years in a row makes the logistics a breeze.  This year was weird, I was ALONE... well not really alone I knew some faces in the crowd, I ended up chatting with a gal I worked for when I was a teenager.  I also saw my co-worker and her Team in Training girls, they headed to the potty line.. I waited then opted to go again.. glad I did..  I was relaxed and ready to run. 

I had run the course over and over in my head... knowing where I would slow and where I could gain the speed to make up for it.  I rehearsed it, and tried not to get caught up on the hard spots ahead... I was in game mode!!  And this is how it went....

Mile 1- 7:26- Slightly downhill, I felt great.. I planted myself between the 1:40 and 1:50 pacers and let my body do the work.  I knew there was a risk going out too fast, I do this OFTEN, but I told myself if it hurt I would slow.  There were hills later in the course and I would need the time I could gain in the first 2 miles.

Mile 2- 7:30- Still feeling great and cruising along.  There was a guy running with an Aligator hat on, I passed him, but he passed me back.. I dislike getting passed by people in weird costumes, it is sort of a pet peeve.

Mile 3- 8:33- Turning back toward the start line there is a slight uphill that sucked me to the road, I immediatly cursed myself for going out so fast.  The first water stop came and I NEEDED it.  At this point my Sunglasses were fogging up like crazy.  I have run in the glasses before but never raced in them.  BAD CHOICE!!  I missed my visor.  I tucked the glasses in my bra and continued on.

Mile 4- 9:03- The HILL headed up to Wright Park kills me every year.. I knew it was coming...so I focussed on my glutes and just kept moving.. Gravity was pulling me down.  There are a lot of spectators in this section, which is great, but I felt embarassed by my clear lack of hill training. I tried to get back up to speed in the Park but the gravel played with my legs.  Getting past the park loop is the BEST, because the next couple miles are cake. I wanted to cheer for the people headed up the hill, but I knew I had to conserve every ounce of energy.

Mile 5- 7:38- This mile is all downhill which is GREAT. I got passed by Local Legend 61 year old Judy Fisher...I hoped I would catch her again... I didn't..she beat me by 2 minutes..  I let my body just go, getting into the mid 7's easily and with little effort.  I could see a few gals holding back as I zoomed past, running downhill is an art form, once you figure it out, it is an amazing asset to have.

Mile 6- 8:08- My right foot started to hurt and I was getting tired I seriously debated finishing the 10K instead.  It was all I could think about on the stretch where the 2 courses split.  I could take the right and be DONE...but I could not do that. I took Gu this mile and had to stop for a second to get it down.  The Water Stops on this course were super, volunteers full of smiles and support.

Mile 7- 8:37- For some reason when I hit this mile marker in my head I was convinced that a Half Marathon was 13.2 miles, so I thought....just a 10K to go..  HMMMM?  I must have been tired.. Mental demons and a slight uphill made for a painful mile.. The top of my right foot was on fire and hurt so badly... It took everything to not think about it every step.  There was a gal in front of me, I watched her stride and tried to match it.  Anything to keep my mind off the PAIN..

Mile 8- 8:32- It took all I had to keep my legs turning over 8:45 is around my comfortable pace from training runs, so I really had to focus to stay below that.  Lately we have not done many long runs over 7-8 miles and closer to the 9:00's... I was out of shape!!

Mile 9- 8:34- On to the flat, long straightaway on Ruston way...phew...the flat miles felt good and my foot pain went away, it flares up on inclines.  The leaders of the race were passing on the right which was cool.  I had worked the packet pickup and gave the WINNER her packet, I asked what she thought she would run, she said 1:20, she finished with a 1:20:05 or something.. AWESOME!! At the next water stop I passed a couple gals who stopped for water, I grabbed the cup and ran, I knew stopping now would be BAD!!

Mile 10- 8:27- I did my "show off for Kim" turn at the cone.. Style points! It felt good to be headed toward the Finish.  I kept doing (BAD) mental math, still thinking that a Half was 13.2, I have no clue why that was in my head, but I am pretty sure that it played in my favor.  The 1:50 pacer passed me...which hurt my spirit, but she said she was off time wise.. I tried to keep her in sight to get my goal.  She faded away but I was not far off.

Mile 11- 8:28- This mile I kept trying to figure out how much time I had left to get my goal. My legs were tired and the sun was so bright!! I was HURTING! I loved seeing friends, Alyssa, Kristin, Tink  and hearing them cheer. Joy gave me a huge High Five which really helped me.  THANK YOU JOY!! She went on to get a HUGE PR!  Every cheer gave me the push I needed.  Kendra yelled "Dig deep Mel!" which is exactly what I needed to hear.

Mile 12- 9:01- The slight incline of the overpasses killed me, I could not get my pace back.  I have run these same roads over and over in races, and they get me every time.. My lack of training over 10 miles was apparent at this time. I was getting super hot so I dumped water on my head at the last water stop. (TMI- As I poured water on my head my bladder gave out, weird because I didn't think I had to go.  I was VERY thankful for my long spandex.  It was strange but I didn't have time to dwell on it).

Mile 13- 8:55- I was pushing as hard as I could but my legs were DONE..quads on fire. All I could think about was getting up the last little hill and the downhill Finish..  I got passed by a couple ladies..UGH...why did I run so fast the first 2 miles... Up the last little B$tch of a Hill and around to the corner, still thinking I had to go 13.2....

Mile .1- 6:06- As I rounded the last corner I could see the clock 1:49:XX, I felt a surge of energy and SPRINTED!!  I probably looked like a crazy woman, 6'0 T-Rex barreling through, I was not going miss my goal by mere seconds, I had worked too hard!!  My Finish Line photos are probably going to be crazy because all I could think about was getting to that mat.  I did it!!! I was beyond elated, although there was no one there to celebrate with, so my joy was all my own.  I passed by the guys giving out medals, I think they were sitting, thankfully I figured it out a bit later..


This is the best time I have gotten in a Half since 2010 and a personal best for this course.

8:21 Pace
5/69 in my Age Group
28/468 Females

I see some things I can work on to get an even better time end of October at the Snohomish River Half Marathon.  Maybe I will run thinking it is 13.2 again, seemed to help.. LOL!! 
It HURTS to run for myself..
It HURTS to push beyond the pain. 
......But wow
I love the feeling of knowing I left it all on the course :)

  • It is not too late to join me at the Snohomish River Run Half or 10K on October 27th.  go to the Website HERE and use the Discount Code TallMomSRR12 to save $10.  The race benefits 3 non-profits- Ironheart Foundation, Susan G Komen, and Snohomish County YMCA.  October is a great time in the Snohomish River Valley area--pumpkins, and beautiful fall foliage.  Join me...OK logging off to find my next race outfit.. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012


I was watching Alice in Wonderland tonight and heard the quote above..  It made me think..

Have I lost my Muchness??

In some ways I feel like I have... but then I remind myself..

I am running with my husband and family.

I am learning a new job.

I have helped friends and family train to meet their goals.

......No I am not training to qualify for Boston or setting Speed and distance PR's.

But, I still have my Muchness...and I have proof...for your viewing pleasure...

Photos credit to On the Run Events 

My Muchness is my Smile, my playfulness, and my ability to push to new Finish Lines, no matter the pace.  As time passes priorities change....the trick is to focus on the positives and never lose track of YOU because that is what makes you Much Muchier ;)

  • What gives you your Muchness??

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Running Product Reviews

Reviews for water bottles, pants, tops, headbands, and more...

I am super behind on reviewing amazing products and recommending items I cant live without.  Lets get right to it...

*Click the name of the Item to go to a Website for purchase....

I was sent the Clean Bottle for review.  After watching the Youtube video on the Handheld I was intrigued.  I loved the idea that I could un-screw the bottom of the bottle to get it fully clean.  I have tested this bottle on numerous long runs.

Tall Thumbs Up:
-Love that the bottle holds 22oz, the right amount for a thirst runner.
-The bottle will not slip out of the holder
-Easy to drink out of top
-Fits my Android phone perfectly with a fully zip around pouch, that is clear so I can check my phone if needed.
**Have not tested the Gu holder yet, but I like the idea
-Easy to clean and put back together
-10% of Clean Bottle Profits are donated to eco-friendly Charities.

Tall Gripes:
-I don’t like the thin handle, personal preference I would prefer something thicker.
-At $24.95 the price seems a bit high, but for the quality it may be worth it.

I bought the Garmin 310XT using a Gift Card to Road Runner sports.  There is no way that I could do a review even half as good at DC Rainmaker HERE   He is amazing!!  I will give you the very short version.

Tall Thumbs Up:
-The style, I love the look with the Orange and grey.
-Watch is less clunky than my Forerunner 305, lighter weight and thinner strap
-Chimes and vibrates at the increments I set
-Super easy to set up for running
-Waterproof if needed (for the rain for me)
-Optional heart rate monitor, will work with previous Garmin strap, although I have not tested it.

Tall Gripes:
-I forgot to turn off the auto-pause during a race and the watch turned itself off while I was running.  It must have lost satellite in the city/tunnels, etc. WARNING do not use auto-pause during a race.
-I am a bit confused about the battery life.  It said it was charged at 100% then died just after turning on, this should not happen with a new watch. 
-The cost...but as a training tool it is worth it!!

Have you ever worn the perfect outfit?  That outfit that does not bunch, ride up or down, or cause you any hassles on the run.  Well Moving Comfort sent me just such an outfit to test.  I have always loved Moving Comfort gear, the brand sells my favorite 7.5 inch spandex shorts HERE these are my chafe-free saviors when I wear skirts, etc..
Flex Tank- No longer sold online :(
Soft fabric
Long length
Nice color options
I seriously love this tank, I believe I linked on Facebook...although it has sold out the amazing fabric is available in the Fall Line photos above and found online HERE HERE and HERE
Long waisted to hide muffin top
Rear Zipper "stash" pocket big enough for a Gu and some money..
16 1/2 inseam 
Thick, but breathable fabric, so you feel covered and comfortable.

Champion sent me 2 bras to test at the launch of their new Bra Website months ago (oops sorry Champion).  Well I have been wearing this bra once a week ever since and I am in LOVE!!!  

Above is the Custom Criss-Cross style HERE, it is my favorite, but of course you need to buy a bra that is right for you.  The Champion website has a Bra Finder function that will help you pick the right bra for you!!

I found this site on Facebook and was EXCITED to see some long waist-ed shirts and long pants.  The items are not necessarily for running, but for everyday wear, walking, yoga, etc... perfect!!

Tall Thumbs up:
-The fabric is high quality and soft
-The tank is long and keeps things covered
-The fit is perfect and the length of the pants is amazing (they come in 36 and 38 for you really TALL gals), I would not call these running pants.. More like wear before and after races and every other time of the day for ultimate comfort!!
-The packaging for the product was super cute with free wrist bands included.

Tall Gripe:
May be a bit out of some budgets….BUT with as often as you will wear the pants especially, the cost per wear is low.

Lately it has been too hot for visors and hats so I have switched to headbands and sunglasses.  I am still in search of a great pair of cute Sunglasses for now I am using a Kenneth Cole pair I got a Marshalls.  But I have narrowed down my favorite headbands:

Lucy Gym Power HERE-  Everyday Headband, will not move off your head, comfortable and cute.  I wore this at the beach to cover up the grease in my hair J

Bondiband HERE I love these headbands year-round, you can cover up your ears in the winter, slap one on after a sweaty run when you go to coffee, and fold it in half for a cute look in the summer. 

RazzyRoo HERE-  I have several styles of RazzyRoo, they fit my head and style perfectly. 

ActiveBands HERE-   My Bloggy Friend Janice’s sister started this company so I have to give a nod to a new business.  I have a couple of the headbands which are high quality.  If you follow on Facebook you will get info on amazing Coupon codes.


-OnlineShoes.com loves to host great Giveaways on their Blog HERE  follow them on Facebook so you don't miss out!!  With Free Shipping and exchanges on purchase you should go to their site and SHOP..

-The Another Mother Runner Blog has weekly Giveaways on their Blog HERE 

-Brooks is having an end of the season SALE with loads of great deals on Apparel and shoes HERE 

-LOCAL RUNNERS- Do you want to join me for a Flat and Fast Half Marathon or 10K on October 27th??  Register for the Snohomish River Run today and use the code TallMomSRR12 for $10 off your entry!! REGISTER HERE

***Although I was sent some products free of charge I have not been compensated for my review, my opinions are my own.