Wednesday, August 24, 2011

We Run For Those Who Can't

I always love reading the shirts of fellow runners, and seeing everything from various charities to "I run because (insert motivation here)". It's always amazing to see where runners have been, and what their motivation is to continue for one more mile. I've learned that runners tend to wear their heart on their sleeve, and my running group for the AFC Half Marathon in San Diego on Sunday was no exception. Who were we running for? Five incredible men who gave the ultimate sacrifice in Afghanistan and we pray will never be forgotten. You will recognize three of the men from my previous post from my first half marathon, but unfortunately two more names have been added to the list of fallen from our 3rd Battalion 4th Marines Family. I've said it before, and I'll say it again: The Marine Corps is a family. The Marines themselves are brothers, and their wives/girlfriends/sisters/mothers are sisters to each other. 

We ran to honor these men. 
We ran to remember their sacrifice. 
We ran in hope that others would read their names and never forget. 

Cpl Paul Zanowick

LCpl Jason Hill

Cpl Mark Goyet

Lcpl Christopher Camero

SSgt Leon Lucas

Post race. Runners & Our Cheerleaders.
Also, a huge thank you to one of our Darkside Moms who had these shirts made to honor the men lost (whose names are listed on the back).

Monday, August 15, 2011

Planking: All The Cool Kids Are Doing It

I know. I know. I know. I said this morning that I was going to put up a running post tomorrow, but I really didn't want to forget feel like waiting. Sure, maybe I feel like I need to make up for lost time, since I haven't blogged in a month. But anyways, here's a running blog. A day early.

And here it goes...

Last night I was checking out my DailyMile and realized that thus far in 2011 I have only ran a total of 266 miles. Depressing. So it got me thinking that in 2012 I want to make some major changes. Not just want... need. How major? Run at least 1,000 miles in the year 2012. But then I starting thinking, why should I wait until 2012? Let's start now. Not tomorrow. Not next week. Not January 1st, 2012. Today. For the next 52 weeks I plan on running at least 20 miles per week, to put me at a grand total of 1,000 miles. Will it suck? Yes. Is it do-able? Definitely. Will I need to find some major motivation somewhere? Heck yes, you betcha. I would love to be taken seriously as a runner, as well as think of myself as a serious runner. Sure, I've completed in one half marathon and I have my second half marathon on Sunday, but I don't think I'm anywhere as serious as I should be.

Planking. What the cool kids are doing.
While I'm putting in some major miles for the next 52 weeks, I figured I should kill myself a little bit more throw something else into the mix. Planking. No, no, no. Not planking like all the cool kids are doing (see photo: on the right). Planking like all the real cool kids are doing (see photo: below). So starting today I'm also starting 365 days of planking (#plankaday on twitter). What are planks? There are many variations, as is with most exercises. The form that I'm used to is the one pictured below. Lay on your stomach, on the floor resting on your forearms. Push off the floor, raising up onto toes and resting on the elbows. You want to keep your body as flat and in line as possible, and hold for as long as possible. Planks are an amazing workout, strengthening your arms, back and core as well as your stabilizer muscles. Really. Who doesn't want amazing arms, back and core? Don't get me wrong, planks suck. Right now I can only get in about 60 seconds until I'm falling to the ground, but after killing myself with some practice I'm going to be amazing!
Planking. What the really cool kids are doing.

Why wait for January 1st for everyone else to decide it's the appropriate time to make new years resolution? So not only is it not the first of the year, it's not even the first of the month. Ooh, such a rebel.

[Thanks to my friend Vincenzo (@Spincenzo on twitter) for letting me use the picture of him and his brother planking like the cool kids.]

Pack Your Bags And Drive To A Sunny Day

I'm back in California.

Okay, okay... I've actually been back in California for 2 weeks now. After an amazing 2 month long vacation in Milwaukee, WI, it's definitely bittersweet to be back in California. Being "home" in Milwaukee was a blast; for two months I got to feel like my old self again. In a weird way it was nice being able to go out on a Friday and Saturday night, go to concerts and be with all my friends. I actually felt like a normal 25 year-old. As much fun as I had over those two months, I'm glad to be back in my own home. I've missed cooking in my kitchen, sleeping in my own bed and being my 25 year-old self with five years of marriage under her belt.

That's another thing that has recently happened, just celebrated my 5th wedding anniversary. Well, I guess celebrated it as any other military couple would whose spouse is currently deployed. We were lucky enough to Skype for 45 minutes and 53 seconds (who's counting?!) and he sent me a beautiful bouquet of flowers. Sure, it's not the traditional way to celebrate a milestone anniversary, but our marriage is anything but traditional. Just over six years ago we started dating, and 364 days later we were walking down the aisle. Just over a month after we said our "I do's," we were saying our "I'll see you later's" (It's never goodbye, it's I'll see you later) as he boarded the bus to Iraq. So in a weird way it almost seemed fitting that we would be celebrating our golden anniversary (we were married on August 5th) while he was deployed to a far away land.

The past five years have been quite the adventure. In five years we have lived in 2 states, 4 cites and now currently on our second duty station. Nothing brings a couple closer together than deployments and PCSing. Well, those two things can do one of two things: strengthen their marriage, or weaken their marriage. We've been lucky that thus far it's been the first one. You just have look at the good side of things, instead of dwelling on the negatives. For anyone who has been stationed in the oh-so-glamorous MCAGCC Twentynine Palms, you know that this place can not only make or break a relationship, but a person as well. To put it kindly, we're in the middle of nowhere. But since we've moved here we've learned to make the best of what God has given us. Isn't that what life is truly about? If you don't like the hand you're given, make it what you want it to be.

Yep, I was definitely planning on a running blog today, but this just seemed to flow. :] Running blog up this week. Promise. Thanks for reading.

Home I often use the term loosely. I have two homes. Milwaukee is home because it's where I'm from. My second home is wherever I'm currently living.
PCS Permanent Change of Station
MCAGCC Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center