Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right.

Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right.

30 January 2007

shake your groove thang

whew. found my groove. today was a good workout. sigh of relief. i ran the week 4 of couch to 5k program today. the workout is as follows: 5 minute warm up brisk walk, 3 minute run, 90 sec. brisk walk, 5 minute run, 2.5 minute brisk walk, 3 minute run, 90 sec brisk walk, 5 minute run, 5 minute cool down walk.

i found it challenging but do-able. miz nina and i decided to stay on the asphalt today while out on the fields, as the dirt trails are not completely free of ice. there were a few mild hills involved, but they were attainable. i'm very pleased. i got through the entire workout without reaching that complete state of oxygen deprivation. yay!!

this is the day i knew would come. next run day is thursday this week. can't wait.
until then!

29 January 2007

Let's go! go! go!

today was a beautiful day. i took a wonderful, long walk with miz nina. walked at about a 5.5 mph pace for 1.5 hours. not really cold at all! i had to take off my jacket. i checked out the trails i like. they were still pretty icy today, but if the weather stays nice then by tomorrow they ought to be good to run on.

28 January 2007

duh feet

yeah..so, i admited defeat (duh feet) after my last run and that i had actually injured myself and would need to take some time off to heal. dagnabbit. i've stayed home catching up on boring housework all week, resting my painful, probably, achilles tendonitis. housework = yuck

today i'm meeting friends to go walking for a few hours down by the river in bern. i'm looking forward to it, and if i can walk painfree, then i will recommence my running program next week. i'll probably start back a week or two on the program and work my way back up again.

i bought another pair of shoes yesterday. i stopped in a swiss sporting goods store and had someone help me pick out a pair of shoes to use on asphalt. (last week i ran on asphalt for 2 miles with my trail shoes. hmmm). the guy also said these shoes would be ok to use in the "grunewald" as well. i did the entire transaction in my best german (thanks to an intensive class i took last summer!) my german is no so good, but i actually understand most of what people say to me, especially if they speak standard german and not the berner-swiss version (an entirely different thing all together!). 119 swiss francs later, i have another pair of shoes. i'm going to try them out today!

by the way - we had snow this past week and the temps have dropped. hmmm. snow is not really my thing.
later same day: i met up with my friends and walked one hour with them at about a 5.5 mph pace. they were "nordic walking" and i was just walking. man! using those poles can really increase your speed! those girls took off and left me in the dust the last .25 mile. whew! i'm i impressed. i'm going to try the "nordic walking poles" tomorrow.
after the walk i did 2 miles on the treadmill, easy. took me 19.30 minutes. felt ok. only had the usual tenderness in my right heal/achilles area. the bad pain i'd given myself last weekend is all gone. super!

23 January 2007

couldn't find my groove

did my workout today. it's in the upper 30s outside, breezy, dark. not too cold. definitely NOT snowing. there wasn't any ice out so the trails were easy to handle today. not especially muddy either. but...i just couldn't get into the groove. you know the one? when you start moving and everything is working right, you feel great, you get those happiness-bubbles, you feel like you could run all day? well, i didn't get that today.

what i got today was tight calves, achy ankles, heavy feeling legs. i felt like i was not in my own body- but the body of an old lady. ack! that can't be me! can it? dammit.

but i did my little program. this week - the 4th week of the couch-5k program: 5 minute walking warm up, 3 min. run, 90 sec walk, 5 minute run, 3 min. walk, 5 minute run, 2.5 minute walk cooldown. i made an effort to stay on flat dirt trails today, even if it meant i repeated back over the same terrain several times. if i came to a hill, i gave myself permission to walk up it. i wanted to take it easy on the old legs. cardiovascularly, i had an easy time. that was heartening. but the legs were telling me no, no, no!
oh well! today wasn't a good running day. but i'm psyched! that means that a really good one is in the future.

keep moving. stay flexible. don't push too hard.

my daughter's empty bedroom
although life in general has been "ok" lately, i just sent my daughter back to college. :( (trust me! i'm way better at letting her go than i was freshman year!)
and remember my saturday workout? i hurried out the door in the morning to knock it out before we took our little lunch trip to france. turns out i did a number on myself.
my previous injuries? - blackening my big toe nail by running in shoes that were too short. i dealt with my sore toes issue by getting new shoes. that has easy to deal with once my best friend (thanks ctclady) gave me a CLUE. (duh)

and the pain i've been experiencing at the back of my right heel for the past year is probably achilles tendonitis. it started before i was learning to run, probably agravated by the amount of walking i did last year. so..it hurts. if i keep that tendon stretched out, and only run about 20-30 minutes, then it doesn't flare up. but, i get competitive with myself, and during a run when i'm feeling great, i go too far.

slow down. don't push.
on my workout last saturday - when i did the first workout of the 4th week of the couch-5k program i'm following - i ran along neighborhood asphalt sidewalks, through our little town, then along the road that leads into bern. i knew it was about a 2 mile route, and i wanted to see how far the program run was taking me. the last half of the route is an easy elevation, but elevation none the less. the workout went fine. i had no trouble cardio-vascularly, but my lower calves felt tight. i kept lightly stretching, and figured that when i warmed up, it would subside....so i kept going.

by the end of the workout, i had indeed passed the two mile point i had envisioned, so miz nina and i turned about to walk the 2 miles back home. i was warmed up, feeling great...and tempted to jog back at intervals. but i didn't. no need to push, right?
so...how come the last 1.5 miles home, my lower left calf started to HURT! dammit! what was THAT about? was it a muscle spasm? did i rip something to pieces and not know? what the hell WAS that? ow. ow. i kept stretching lightly, but couldn't seem to move my leg into a position so i could stretch out a cramp (if that's what it was!). crap. i was not happy. and then! i had to pee!

(i had 2 cups of coffee earlier that morning and i know caffeine does this to me, but i neeeeeed my coffee, right? ugh!) so i had to peeeeeee and my leg hurt...and i had a long walk ahead of me. then Mr. McKickerson (yeah the hubby) drives by me and gaily waves. he was going to gas up the car. i was thinking, how great it would be if he gave me a lift home. ha! but i was almost home by then - only 0.5 mile to go to the house. i listened to the red hot chili peppers and tried to keep my mind off my dilemna.

the rest of the day, that pain in my leg remained. it really hurt. the ride in the car, and sitting still probably wasn't the best for it. when i was sitting, it felt ok. when i went to stand up from sitting, it would start screaming again..and of course, walking around colmar was painful. after about one hour of gentle strolling the pain began to subside, so i think i must have given myself some mother of a muscle spasm....probably in the accesory soleus.

so, what have i learned?
(1) don't drink coffee before a workout
(2) i'm not a morning runner (tendons and ligaments are
naturally longer later in the day!)
(3) with my issues, i need more than a 5 minute warm up. i need a 15 minute warm up.
(4) if something hurts, stop.
(5) it's best to run a loop and end up where i started. :)

yesterday was supposed to be a running day for me. my goal: monday, wednesday, friday, and then either saturday or sunday (schedule permitting). i didn't get my run in. yesterday my lovely college senior daughter went back to the US for spring semester. i'm always really bummed when she leaves. i accompanied her to the airport to see her off - which meant we left at 0530 after not sleeping all night. we had time for café and gipfellis (swiss croissants) before she boarded. i've already heard from her - she's back safe & sound on campus. but i miss that girlie! but i always go into withdrawal symptoms everytime she leaves. i'm going to keep moving. stayed warmed up. stay flexible. when i sit around, everything tightens up and hurts worse, right?
after i saw the daughter off, i took myself on a nice gentle walk around the old town of zurich. took lots of pics with my new digital camera she got me for christmas. this walk was all i did for exercise yesterday. i adore zurich. i kept myself entertained and didn't feel too sad until later in the afternoon. although living overseas has many advantages, one of the biggest disadvantages is that i miss my daughter, my sister, my parents, my best friend, etc. . i don't get to see them often. wow. pity party for me! ok. all done.
today is a new day! it's cold out. i still have a son at home - a high school senior.
no snow yet although some may be forecast? i want to get outside and do my 2nd workout. i'll go out there and see how it all works and feels today.

swans on the limmat river, zurich

21 January 2007

lunch in france continued

the visit to colmar, france - in alsace lorraine.

oh! it's all about the food!

let me share with you.

here's what i had for lunch:


Salade au Chevre Chaud

le plat

Truite Almondine

et pour dessert:

creme brulée

20 January 2007

lunch in france


we got through the wind storm without any issues at our place. it blew like crazy, and didn't stop until friday evening.

i'm up early on saturday morning... waiting for daylight. i know i'm supposed to get my run done today because i didn't do it yesterday - way too windy to be out. Kicky McKickerson (the hubby) made it impossible to sleep past 0600 so...grrrr....i'm up! i'm up! there's a pretty pink tinge to the sky now..... i always find motivating myself so hard! but after i do my workout i always feel so great! is it because the torture is over? ha! or is it because i'm exhilerated? probably both.

today Kicky and i are taking our daugher (home from college still for break) and her pal to france for lunch. we love to visit the little town of colmar in alsace lorraine - about 1.5 hours away. previously we lived in paris. for us, france is all about the wine! it's all about the food!

18 January 2007

the wiiiiiiiiiind!

wow! i'm glad today is my resting day. it's drizzly outside, still not so cold, but the wind! it's gusting up to at least 40 mph i guessing. good day not to be out there.

so far this winter i've been super lucky! we haven't had any snow. the temperatures have stayed above freezing, and some days have been so spring-like that our tulips are starting to put up shoots, the rose bushes have started growing leaves again, and there are little crocuses blooming in the yard. our grass has stayed green. and the best part is, i've been able to be outside just about every day!

the following photos are examples of a past winter and this winter:

the wind is absolutely howling outside now. i'm going to curl up with a good book today and count my blessings that i have a roof over my head.


later same day: i just figured out we are under an alert for severe weather across europe.
here is the METEOSWISS site.

we are in for gusts of 60-90 km/h (37 -55 mph) during the day, then 80-100 km/h, (49-62 mph) in the evening, with possible gusts friday of 120-140 km/h. (74 -86 mph) wow.

tomorrow is "ski day" with my son's school. i'm kinda hoping they cancel, you know?

17 January 2007


today i ran along these fields, doing my couch to 5K program, then felt so good at the end of it, i jogged another 40 minutes through the forrest you see in the background. nice soft trails, gentle hills. ahhh. i felt great! miz nina was along and i just love that she pulls me up the steep hills. thank you nina!

16 January 2007

My First Entry

Hi! Welcome to my First Entry.

i'm writing you from a small town, north of bern, switzerland. i've lived here a little over two years and will be here probably through next summer ('07) i'm originally from florida, USA.

i am in the 3rd week of the Couch to 5K Program. this week's workout is: 5 minute brisk walk warm-up, 90 seconds jog, 90 seconds brisk
walk, 3 minutes jog, 3 minutes brisk walk, 90 seconds jog, 90 seconds brisk walk, 3 minutes jog, then 5 minute brisk walk cool down.

i'm making slow, steady progress. i began power walking on the trails around our town in november. i almost alway take along Miz Nina (my fox terrorist). wonderful weather has perservered and i've been meterologically inspired. i've been outside walking, walking, walking and now almost running all winter.

around my small town are an abundance of hiking/running/biking trails. i love them all, but they are very hilly. hills for me at this stage of my beginning running program are really hard! this week i opted to run a flatter trail down in bern, along the aare river. wow! what a difference flatness makes. flatness is awesome. so, i've done the first two workouts at week 3 on the couch to 5K program. today is my resting day. so tomorrow that means, yes, i'm taking it to the hills.

i have a goal. it is to run in the 5K race in the Bern Grand Prix on saturday, may 12, 2007. this will be my first race ever, ever, ever. it starts high on a hill, drops about 100 feet into the Old Town of Bern, goes around several blocks of the cobble stone streets in Old Town, then back up the same hill. whew. that hill! it really intimidates me. i'm going to go visit it next week and walk up it for the first time ever. i looked it over with Google Earth. it is approximately .35 miles long, and has an approximately 76 verticle foot difference from top to bottom. this hill and i are going to have to come to some kind of serious agreement.