Tuesday, November 24, 2009

2nd 16 MIile Run Completed, as Dad comes home

Sunday was a Great day for a long run. It was cool the entire time, and the first 13 miles felt good...the last 3 were hard, but got it done!

Found out on Sunday that Max's dad also arrived safely back to the States from a year long deployment.

If all goes well, he will be back to enjoy Thanksgiving in Austin, but still waiting on the news, as he's still out of state for the time being.

Deployments are hard on everyone, the soldier...children...parents...siblings...spouses...and ex's (me), as we share a child and of course prayed for his safe return over the past several months. So, it will be a season to be extra grateful, and Max will get to catch up with him.

Donations are continuing to come in and I look forward to the holiday party on December 3rd for this fundraiser. If you are interested in attending, please email, runningforryan@gmail.com for details.

Got a nice little 5 mile with stroller run in today, but dang Max is growing! I think I am pushing around 80-100 lbs with him and the stroller! But it's good for my arms, since I never weight lift.

Tired, and heading to bed.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Over $1,000, but $9,000 to go!

Just found out a friend from long ago is over in Iraq. His second tour, I believe. I wish him well and appreciate his service. Ran well last night, considering I was still feeling a little under the weather. It was drizzly and cool out, so a nice fast paced 7 mile run was had. It started out decent, but this guy passed me about 2 miles from the finish, and so I wanted to keep up with him for a good pace. I ended up passing him, and hearing his footsteps behind me, allowed me to go hard to the finish.

Mentally preparing for a 16 mile run tomorrow. If the weather stays overcast and cool, should be a great day for it!

Today Max and I are heading to the Domain (a shopping area) in N. Austin for a Christmas Tree lighting. It seems like the Christmas stuff starts earlier each year! But I love this time of the year, so the more lights and beautiful decorations, the better!

Thanks for continuing to DONATE! We have a way to go, but so appreciative of the donations to this point!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Austin Traffic, the bad and good

Not going to lie, I feel beat down today. Started feeling it last night on my run. The weather was perfect, but the joint between my right arm and shoulder was aching badly, could not move my arm much on the run. Woke, up with a stinging pain, through my arm and got a little sickly at work. So, I had to skip a run tonight in hopes of recovering for a good run tomorrow night, and heading toward a 16 mile run on Sunday. It will be my longest distance yet!

Had a couple of emails about my Lupus. Strange that random strangers now email me, but that's what happens when you start to ask the nation for money to support our nation's severely wounded veterans.

I really only felt the affects of it during the summer when it was over 100 degrees almost daily. It started with a rash, the size of a dime on my face, and it wouldn't go away. So I went to a dermatologist who thought it was Lupus instantly. Blood work was done, and I had the antibodies in my blood related to Lupus. Not convinced, I asked for a skin biopsy. I deep tissue sample was taken from my face near my ear (you would never even know) and I was told that due to the extensive testing on the skin, it was 99.9 percent certain I had discoid lupus(external). So, then, a ton of blood was taken, about 10 tubes, and sent out to a lab in California. No kidney failure was detected, which is common in SLE (systemic lupus (internal)), but I carry the antibodies in my blood still. It's confusing, but long story short, I have a 10% chance of developing SLE. I was told to quit eating red meat, fried food, limit alcohol, and so on. Anything harmful to the liver and kidneys. I have to get my blood drawn every few months and follow up with my rheumatologist. Basically, it's an autoimmune disease where my good cells are attacking each other because they don't know better (silly little cells). Some days my ears burn when I have an inflammation. I only have a few noticeable spots near my neck and ears and since the sun has chilled out, it's been ok for the most part. In the summer I had one day when I was as stiff as a board and had to lie down almost all day, but other than that, I have felt good.

Which brings me back to Austin traffic. I have been here about a year, and well the one thing I still can't stand is traffic! Especially when you are feeling icky and just want to have soup and lie down. So, after being in traffic for an hour, I opened up my mailbox to find a large envelope. Huh? Well, it was the bumper sticker I ordered a few days ago. I was thinking about another way to get the word out about donating. I thought, well, I am in traffic all day, why not get a bumper sticker made. So, it came in the mail, after I forgot I even ordered it. When I looked at it, I nearly cried, as it humbled my attitude about being a tiny bit sick, and let me realize once again there's a race to run for some pretty amazing soldiers, and I can do this!

So, attached is the bumper sticker...simple and sweet, and hopefully something random strangers will see and type into their computers...and click on the link...and give....give to all those who gave us so much!

Sunday, November 15, 2009


That was the amount of my lunch with Max at Jason's Deli today. Automatically thought of November 11 (Veteran's Day). And so, I pushed a side the minor aches and pains of my body from a 15 mile run the night before and told myself, to stay focused on the goal at hand. Recovery from the long runs are becoming easier each time around, and I am curious how a 20 mile run feels, versus a 15 miler run.

I also discovered that the smell I always smell under the Congress bridge on Town Lake aren't silk worms, rather bat doo-doo. When I lived in South Korea, they roasted silk worms for a snack, kind of like peanuts, and the smell is very similar to bat poop in my opinion. I never tried the worms, because, well octopus was as daring as I got in food tasting.

Networking is going to be an ongoing goal for me, as I was totally shy to ask for donations in the beginning. I didn't have a plan, I knew I just wanted to run and make my brother proud to finish a marathon, and do something that could help the awesome men and women in our military. It's a volunteer service, which means, we don't have to question "why did they volunteer?", we just have to remember, "they did volunteer", and that is why we can sip our mocha lattes and read a paper on a sunny Sunday afternoon. If you are reading this and haven't done so, PLEASE DONATE...AND TELL EVERYONE YOU KNOW TO DONATE. EVERY SINGLE CENT COUNTS. IF YOU HAVE 5 BUCKS, I AM GRATEFUL. IF YOU HAVE 50 BUCKS, I AM GRATEFUL. Thank you! Your kindness will not be forgotten!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Join The Team!

Bench in Central Park, New York:
"It is necessary to dig deep into oneself to discover the hidden grain of steel called will" -Ryan Shay
(I always come back to this when I feel overwhelmed)
I appreciate the funds donated so far! This challenge still has a way to go in terms of getting donations collected. Please don't be shy and join the team! If you have ever donated to a cause, like LiveStrong, donating is the same way. Just click on the donation link and follow instructions. The same goes for joining the team. Just add your name on the team page, and set a goal. Maybe its $250, or maybe it's $2000....

You can also let people know you are going to run in the Austin Marathon, Half Marathon, or 5K on 2-14-10. I cannot pay for your entry fee, but if you decide to run to raise money, just join the team, and tell people you are running for this cause and those who raise $200 plus will receive a shirt representing Running For Ryan for Wounded Warriors, and wear it as part of the team on race day.

Any questions can be emailed to: runningforryan@gmail.com
It's a great time of the year to support our military and their families. Remember, the Wounded Warrior Project helps empower seriously wounded veterans who often lose hope when returning from overseas. It also helps families, who are often full time caregivers by doing things such as weekend retreats. Here families can relax for a few days and encourage each other as they share similar challenges now and in the future.
Last couple of days were good runs. Warming up for another 15 mile run. This time on Sat., as that's a day I can have Max hang out with grandma for a bit. The training is not routine, but definitely fitting in runs whenever I can. Still lucky to get 5 or 6 run days a week.:)

Also happy my best friend, who was suppose to leave for awhile for work is not flying out for another few weeks:) Can't wait to hang out again!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

15 Miles! Today Was For Ft. Hood Families

The Button Reads:
"If you don't stand behind our troops feel free to stand in front of them"

I walked outside this morning to a cool, foggy, and drizzly morning... perfect for me...the colder the better. I was mentally ready, needed to refocus on marathon after a sad week. Off I went, and it felt so good. After a half mile into the run, a dog came up from behind me and jumped on my back, and it scared the @$#! out of me. The funny thing is, the owner saw the dog, and kind of laughed as the dog wouldn't stop jumping on me. Anyway, no bites, and happy that it was just a hyper dog and not a crazy one, I kept going.

My thoughts were full, the soldiers, my family, a friend in Africa who will do great work over there, and back to the soldiers. So, when I felt like jello around the 12 mile mark, I focused on the goal, and luckily at the 15th mile, I had a gush of energy to finish the run with somewhat of a decent running pace. Totally dehydrated though...not too smart...I will not go that far without drinking anything again.

Today Moby's "Fall Apart"(I think that's the name) and Black Eyed Peas "Meet Me Halfway" were songs that stuck out in my head. Especially that Moby tune, it just got me really focused and in the mood to run harder.

I am toast. Goodnight!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Looking forward to December

Not going to deny it, November is starting off not so great. I was so consumed with thoughts to day, I don't' even know how I functioned well enough to work. Took the day off of running as the aftermath of crashing on the cement a couple of days ago had caught up with my arms and my left knee. The friend I mentioned yesterday was a primary witness to the horrific scene at Hood. I saw this person briefly this morning to give much deserved hugs and then this person had to head back for more question answering after an all night briefing session. Warm thoughts to this soldier.
But I had to distract myself and took Max to see "A Christmas Carol". Not too shabby, but a little much on the special affects. Afterwards, I felt calmer and ready to refocus on the running challenge and mentally prepare for the upcoming months of training and getting those donations. Then, I got an email about the Camp Mabry Veteran's Day race being canceled, due to the shootings at Ft. Hood. It totally put me in a downer mood, as I was so looking forward to running for the veterans on that particular day. It was the race I wanted to pump me up more for the marathon challenge. I know eventually I will come around to being a little less emotional, but honestly I have to get a team together. It's just so much more inspirational and really the best way to achieve this goal.
Sunday's going to be my longest run yet. Really looking forward to it as the milage increase is definitely building my confidence.
Gotta sleep...Max only sleeps in on school days... ha ha

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Ft. Hood

I didn't need anything else to be emotional about, but life happens. On top of thinking about my brother so much lately, what happened at Ft. Hood today just blew me away. I have visited there a few times in the past couple of months, even watched Gary Sinise perform there with his Lt. Dan Band, which by the way was a cool concert from a super cool group of musicians. One of my best friends was there today, and my stomach just turned, but she's ok. Another person dear to me was in the middle of the action and I am blessed he is doing ok, though covered in others' blood and a witness to the tragedy.
Unable to go to a locked down Army Post and give support, I ran. The first half was brutal...couldn't focus, wanted to leave town, but after the sun went down, my body cooled, and I got a burst of energy to finish off the last few miles of a 7 mile run. Had a co-worker run with me today, and he kicked my butt by two minutes, impressive, and well he has bragging rights now, as he thought for sure he wouldn't be able to keep up with me...ha ha, yah right:)
All my thoughts to the families of those lost today, and everyday when we lose one of our servicemen and women.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Nothing Broken

So, it's pretty obvious I enjoy a run without stroller when I can, purely due to the fact that I can run easier. I am more tired from a 5 mile run pushing a stroller, than a 10 mile solo run. Anyway, had a chance to do a solo run tonight, and I was in a rush because of Austin traffic! An hour and 10 min. to get from South to North Austin. So, I rushed out for a run, in the dark, without a light and had to do a little cross-country run for about a quarter mile (no sidewalk), couldn't see a thing, and tripped on a curb. Landed so hard on my wrists and my head just hit the cement a bit, fall broken by my hands and left knee. After 10 minutes of stinging pain, I recovered and decided it was best to head back and put in an extra good run tomorrow. Yesterday was so strange emotionally as it marked the 2nd anniversary of Ryan's death. I was high from a great run, but couldn't sleep, kept having dreams waking me up. I am one who always remember a dream, but can't remember anything last night. Needless to say, it was a restless night. Today was better, minus the fall, nothing broken but my ego, as the cars drove by with me kissing the sidewalk:)

Monday, November 2, 2009

2 Years

Tomorrow (Nov. 3rd) is two years ago that Ryan died. I think with out knowing it, I get emotional around this time of the year. Because, I remember going through the same emotions last year. I used to cry often when I first started to get back into running, because every time I physically felt pain, I felt emotional as well towards Ryan. But this past Sunday and Monday were blissful running days as I felt like I was gliding through my workouts. So, as my brother Stephan just told me the other day...as sad as it can be to think of him while running..."it can be very inspirational"

Warm thoughts to my family and Alicia today. Ryan was so loved.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

This Day Light Saving Thing Is Gonna Be Tricky

Good weekend. Fun was had by Max as he trick or treated for about a half hour and was done...he had more fun handing out candy than going door-to-door. Had a 12 mile run on Friday as I was free to run without stroller, but strangely my second half was a lot stronger than the first half, which wasn't so great.

But...I have some songs that get me through certain moments in a run, and lately it has been Cold Play's Viva la Vida or whatever the name is..during my dragged out parts in a run. Kick Start My heart gets me up the hills, Sand Storm for a little fast paced running, and ending the run with some John Mayer. Could run to all of his music, but not fast enough when I need a little push.

Took Saturday off as it was loaded with things to do and of course Halloween for Max. Today I was up North in Leander with Max's aunt and uncle so I did a nice 6 mile run in the neighborhood and felt quite better since the 12 miler.

Awesome that Meb one the NYC marathon this morning...can't believe it's been almost 2 years since Ryan was there. What a roller coaster ride 2 years has been!
Now...how I am going to train, now that it's dark after work...I need to get a strategy figured out. Totally forgot about the DST thing! Might switch to morning running, which I am not a fan!