Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Imbalances in the bod

After a few months of some not so fun hamstring tightness and pain (and just lately IT band troubles), I knew it was time to tackle the issue before I get too far into this marathon training. Yesterday, thanks to the suggestion of my physical therapist and runner friend "D," I visited a local PT who is a runner herself and is used to working with athletes. Believe me, you'll come to appreciate this if you ever have to see a doc or physical therapist regarding running injuries.

I've been to PT several times for several different issues, including S.I. joint, plantar fasciitis, runner's knee, IT band and hamstring troubles.

Each time I feel like I've learned something new, but haven't always carried those pieces along into the next training session. FAIL. I know I should continue to do those exercises and stretches I'm tasked with, but I haven't.

Once again, I learned some new things that I thought might be helpful to other runners, especially women. I think a lot of us tend to have the same reoccurring issues. If you are having pain that isn't going away, get it taken care of. You don't want to realize after the fact that you could have prevented a major injury with a few simple exercises!

What I learned so far:
1. I'm definitely weaker on my left side (where all the pain is) than my right.
2. My muscles are essentially imbalanced because there is a ton of quad strength, but not enough in the glute region (think right above your butt cheek and right below it on the outer edges.
3. The knee and foot pain can be improved by strengthening my rear and core
4. My low back essentially isn't moving as you'd want. It's got a bit of a catch in it.
5. Even with the ab work I do in my yoga practice and a few times a week during weight sessions, my core needs more work. It's always shocking how much the core plays a roll in these athletic endeavors.
6. Running will only emphasize all of the symptoms I'm having (as I figured).

The great thing is, she didn't say "Take 2-4 weeks off running." She understands that it's just not possible. So, we have a plan. I have a few minor exercises to do several times a day.

These include:
1) a modified cobra type pose pushing up only on my left arm until it's straight and looking back toward my left leg. My left low back is the area with movement issues.
2) pulling in my stomach and holding (or doing kegels) for 10-30 seconds
3)standing and thinking of slightly rolling your knees out, which automatically pulls up the arch of the foot and fires the rear (and hold)
4) foam rolling (along IT band using) and both legs at same time to get the hamstrings

For the next six weeks, I will also see the P.T. weekly and have another appointment every week to get Astym. I imagine as things progress, I'll have more exercises and stretching to do.

According to their website, Astym is "a rehabilitation program that stimulates the regenerative healing process of the body. This approach is a non-invasive therapy that works fast and consistently. The ASTYM system rejuvenates muscles, tendons and ligaments. It gets rid of scar tissue problems from old injuries in a fashion previously unimaginable. We have the scientific background, data and experience that proves it."

While it doesn't mean that this is the solution for all your IT band, hamstring, whatever issues, what it does show is how important cross training is in your routine. No matter what sport you're doing (but especially running due to the beating it inflicts on your joints), doing a different activity once or twice a week is not only beneficial, but crucial to keeping your body and life balanced.

It also reminds me that listening to your body is important. If I continued to ignore all that pain and tightness and simply continued to stretch it, things weren't going to get much better. It feels good to be working toward a solution!

So how about that cross training? Today, I rode the bike to work and am riding to boot camp tonight. Should be fun!

Training update: Last night I listened to my body. I was planning to do 60+ min run with some hill work, but when the legs and body felt like crap, I backed off, ran 7-9 hills of 1-2min each and finished with 39 minutes of running and even a little walking in mix.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Tour de Farmland, USA

Saturday, I was signed up to ride the 75 mile course for the Marion County Boys and Girls Club Cycle Challenge. Some opted to do the 40 miler, but of course I had to take on the bigger challenge. The course consisted of one 40 mile loop and then another 36 or so mile loop, with a bbq lunch at the park in between.

I left the house shortly before 7am, picked up some coffee and headed north for 90 min or so. I got there around 8:30, grabbed my packet and got ready. The morning was sunny and I opted to go with no arm warmers and the addition of sunblock.

The ride began at Willamette Mission State Park. It was such a beautiful drive in. There were hops growing on these strings everywhere (one of the other riders told me what they were).

It started around 9:15 after the race director announced the sponsors and introduced the youth cycling team, "Flow Riders" that was sponsored by the Boys and Girls Club and had trained to ride the 75 miles. There were about 10-15 of them (in yellow jerseys).

The first few miles were slow and lead by a police motorcade. But soon enough we were free flying.

After about 15 miles, I was pretty much on my own, but could see other cyclists behind and in front of me. Mile 20 was our first aid station at The Oregon Garden. They had bananas, oranges, pb&j, and the best locally made marionberry cobbler! I made it out of the aid station in 5 min flat.

Enjoying the scenery and my tunes. Left knee pain started around mile 20-25, which reminded me how badly I need a bike fit. Bike fits essentially get you properly aligned on your bike and tiny adjustments can make all the difference in the world!

At some point, I had to slow down for roosters crossing the road. That's when you really know you're in a rural area. ;)

I skipped the fuel stop at mile 30 because soon enough we'd be having our lunch back at the park. I rolled into the park shortly after noon. I grabbed a burger, cookie, sliced apple, baby carrots and lemonade. Crazy how much you can eat when you're just buuuurning those cals!

Fueled up, I headed out on the second loop. I think most people were doing the 40 so they were just enjoying their lunch. I took my sweet time (20-25 min) but was ready to get back on the bike. To my hilarity, our second loop of 36 mi took us to a ferry where we had to cross the river.

This is when you know you're doing a bike RIDE and not a bike RACE. Standing on ferry.

The second loop consisted of more farmland and a lot of wineries...maybe 10-15! And I found a few hills as well (a few more than the first loop I think).

At the start of the second loop I decided I wasn't going to stop at the midpoint aid/fuel station. I was tough enough to just cruise on past, especially after my humungo lunch. Besides, I had plenty of water and sports drink AND it would save me time.

I generally enjoyed just looking at all the scenery and listening to my tunes. Everyone asked if the manfriend rode with, but no, he prefers things that involve competition and a race to the finish.

I had a lot of fun though even on my own. That being said, it would be fun to do one of these rides with someone of similar strength and speed. Around mile 55, my muscles were feeling fatigued but no serious pain.

By mile 70, my fat feet were numb in those skinny cycling shoes. I wasn't too surprised.

At exactly mile 72.67 (yes, i checked) I encountered a very steep, but short hill to which I gave a few choice words, down shifted and pedaled up. Hill not shown, but just imagine it. Steep and about 1/4 mile long. I survived.

After about six hours of riding (rest stops included), I was finished with 77.65 miles completed. I was definitely happy to be off the bike, stretch and wipe the grime off my face, arms and legs.


All in all, it was a great ride. Well organized and a lot of fun! The course was marked so well it would have been hard to make a wrong turn. At every turn there was a piece of paper on a pole with an arrow pointing the correct direction AND spray paint on the pavement confirming the direction.

I definitely felt that this year's 75 miler was stronger than last year's, which only makes sense. I've put more time in the saddle and feel stronger in my cycling abilities. Last year I remember the final 10 miles just being painful on my rear, knees and legs. But on Saturday, I was tired, but not "GET ME OFF THIS BIKE!" tired.

I'd still say a marathon is about 5x as hard as riding 75 miles, but I love to put my body to a new challenge. What's the most challenging thing you've completed (physically or mentally)? Mentally: mine would be getting over a lost friendship from college. Physically: mine would have to be the marathon (vermont city marathon or whidbey island).

Monday, June 28, 2010

Someone has a birthday...

That's right, manfriend turns 33 today! In honor of his big day, I baked his favorite kind of cake. Yellow cake straight out of a box with chocolate frosting. I chose to do a chocolate buttercream that included cream cheese, butter, cocoa, powdered sugar and a few other things.

Yellow cake w/ choc frosting reminds him of his childhood so I gladly obliged.

Want a lick?

Health chips for the topping!

Three candles because I didn't have enough for any rendering of a 33.


We'll be digging into this puppy tonight. Yum! What's your favorite kind of cake? Mine is either lemon poppyseed with raspberry filling in between the layers OR chocolate w/ a light layer of chocolate frosting.

Check back tomorrow for the 75 mi ride recap! This weekend was another exhausting one. Need.Sleep.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Because everyone needs pizza and beer

I got home around 6pm after going to the grocery store and taking my car through the car wash. I was STARVING and manfriend was headed off to a friends' to do some bike maintenance BEFORE we go to dinner.

Let's be honest, when I am hungry, I'm not so pleasant. So, I decided to whip up something semi healthy and not too filling so I could also grab a salad or appetizer when we do go out to eat.

Thanks to Heather's suggestion of tortilla pizza, I was fixated on making exactly that. Luckily, I had all the ingredients...herb tortilla, marinara, spinach, red onion, cherry tomatoes, red pepper, string cheese stick, mushroom, cracked pepper and red pepper flakes. Cooked on broil for about 10 min.


I folded it in half like a quesadilla and munched away. Meanwhile, I'm also enjoying a Deschutes Twilight Summer Ale, brewed just a few hrs away in Bend, OR. Mmm...this is a current fav.

PS- Our speed coach, Lauren Fleshman just won the women's 5k at USA Outdoor Track & Field Championships in Des Moines, Iowa! She made a gutsy move with just 600m to go and held it. Awesome race. And kind of weird to see people you know on ESPN.

What's everyone up to this weekend?

the hurt

Yesterday, as I was counting down the laps on the track, I remembered the hurt. The hurt marathon training brings.

After a few months post marathon, that hurt kind of flits from your brain and all you remember is the crowd, the city and that you ran a freakin' marathon. You forget how hard running 16-20 miles by yourself really is. You forget how much the hill workouts and SPEED stuff will hurt and make you want to QUIT.

And then I thought about our coach and the many other professional athletes that live in Tracktown, USA (Eugene,OR) and all the ones you see at the Olympic Games and realize that these people feel the hurt 24/7/365 because they're always focused on that next critical workout to get them to their highest level. It's their job.

Anyway, I guess you could say I just had a little pity party for the pain that was being inflicted on my legs and kept chuggin'. It was quit and complete a so-so workout w/ a few miles of jogging at the end OR it was suck it up and get to the finish line. It's all about remembering that these workouts will make me/you/us stronger on race day, mentally and physically.

The same can be said for life and the crap we go through to be ready for the big stuff later on. Like that first heartbreak or friendship turned bad, it's all building for the adult stuff that will come along. So here's to being tough and sticking in there through the pain. Not the kind that beats you down so far you can't stand up again, but the pain that we bounce back from after a little ice, stretching and reflection.

Happy Friday and enjoy those runs! I'll be back to report how tomorrow's long ride goes.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

I lied.

I want the clouds back. I know, call me crazy.

First off, yesterday morning I had...Smoothie in a Bowl! Not quite green so I can't call it a Green Monster. What's in it? Ingredients: farmer's market spinach, oats, milk, scoop of plain yogurt, frozen mixed berries, banana, cinnamon and 1 Tbsp pb.

Last night after I rode my bike home, I really wanted to bust out a few miles. It was in the high 70s or so, but felt much hotter. I ran for about 20 min so I would have time to take a quick shower and get ready for girls night! Whew, I got sweaty in no time.

One of manfriend's fabulous glasses. Aren't you tired of dating supermodels?

Ice was necessary in my wata!


Hand over the camera (please)!

Manfriend says "hi."

I hopped back into my work clothes for ladies night and wanted to show you because I much prefer Summer Office Business Casual to business cas. Know what I mean?

I'm just better at putting together outfits with skirts and cropped pants than long pants and sweaters. I think I might even show you guys a 'What I Wore' post every week or two this summer.

Jean jacket: Old Navy, necklace: Jess LC, top: Ann Taylor Loft, shorts: Banana, shoes: Bandolino

This weekend is a busy one. We're dog sitting, I'm riding a wee 75 miles, going to a graduation party, seeing Pink Martini in concert, manfriend is racing a criterium (think 20-30 laps of the same loop...kinda fun actually) and I'll probably do some running. I already feel tired and the weekend has yet to begin.

Lunch with the momsie and auntie today! SPEED workout tonight! Later peeps.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Legs = spent

Whew! Much to the manfriend's delight, I allowed us to do nothing on Sunday. Well not NOTHING, but no riding (or running). Instead, we did errands, yard work, house cleaning, etc. I made up for that by getting in a good 7.5 miles of running last night and then came home for another 8 mi on the bike.

Today, I rode to work and went for a ride after work to get prepped for this weekend's 75 miler, which benefits the local Boys and Girls Club. After all, there's nothing like preparing for an event the week of. Luckily, you can sort of get away with that in riding, but NOT in running. I guess that means I really do need to CHOOSE A MARATHON PLAN. I'll report back when I've done so.

But enough about that, back to the riding. I set off from work headed to the longest climb I know. Luckily, it's fairly scenic and not straight uphill the entire way, but in total it's a gradual six mile climb. You could say these legs were dunzo after that.

After bombing down the back side of the hill, I opted for a bit longer more flat route home, avoiding a steep one mile climb. I figured I might just tip over if I attempted that on tired legs. About 18 miles in, I stopped at a little church and shoved down 3/4 of my luna bar and let my shaky legs rest a bit.

Has anyone tried the Chocolate Peppermint Stick Luna Bar? It is absolutely my favorite flavor. I forgot how much I loved it. It's like a chocolate cookie with a bit of crushed candy cane in it. Yum.

After a minute or two I chugged some more water and clipped back in. The legs appreciated the flat terrain and higher speeds. I picked the manfriend up at his criterium race so we could bike home together. Once home I promptly got to work on pan fried polenta, chicken and marinara. Have you ever tried polenta? It's a nice change from pasta.

I should mention that I was also wearing a backpack with my work clothes in it, which weighed about 6 lbs. Note to self: 6 lbs doesn't seem like a lot, but when you're riding for 30 miles, it makes a difference. Total mileage today: 36

Now if only I could remember to stretch after riding. Strange the habits we develop for one sport and yet can't seem to follow in another. Time to hit the hay!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Yoga and how I think it may just be the missing link...

in my marathon training.

Beware: This post reveals a lot of leg. Surprisingly, I'm okay with it. If you're not, I suggest you move along.

I know I've mentioned quite a bit these past few months about my morning yoga sessions with Dave Farmar or a yogadownload.com podcast. But it wasn't until after Saturday's run that it dawned on me that this may just be the thing to keep my injuries at bay this go around with the marathon. I hope I'm right.

Saturday, I did one of my favorite yogadownload workouts, Yoga for Runners. I highly recommend downloading it for yourself! I have the 25 min free version, but I'm considering buying a longer version.

What I like about this class:
-poses that really help you stretch the hip flexors, hamstrings and quads
-you can feel yourself building strength

My favorite poses in this yoga session are: crescent lunge (hip flexors), standing splits (hamstrings), knee to nose in plank position (abs), half moon (balance) and boat pose.

After I finished my 25 minute session, I spent some time working on a few things I want to get better at: plow, crow and headstand. I won't show you headstand because the pictures weren't great.

Plow (great for the back, hamstrings and quads)

Crow or Crane (focuses on balance, arms and core)


This isn't easy at first, but once you trust yourself and don't worry about tipping forward onto your forehead, the balance will happen.

Supported headstand (takes a lot of arm, core and balance)
For this one, I don't have enough core strength or balance so I need to do it near a wall.

Inverted poses are great for you not only for strength and balance, but they are considered beneficial in many ways such as increased blood flow and circulation, stimulated thyroid gland, stress relief and more.
*Women who are pregnant or menstruating are should not do inversion poses.

Want more resources?
More info about inversions
Inverted postures vital for rejuvenation
Step by step pose info and a wealth of yoga articles

Lately, I've noticed that utkatasana (chair pose) is actually becoming easier. Seriously, I never thought that would happen. Now when Dave Farmar announces "the pose begins when you want to get out of it" or "let this be easy," I actually believe him.

Is there a stretch or pose that is becoming easier for you? If not, pick one you want to focus on (one you might even hate) and fit it in once a day. Soon enough, you might just not loathe (insert pose here) anymore.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

A whole lot of running around

Today I decided to make the Farmer's Market a priority. I've been missing it many weekends because we're either out of town or cycling until early afternoon and not ready to head out until the market is closing up shop. So this morning, I had planned to drive downtown and park, run, hit up the Farmer's Market for some fresh veg (and samples) and head to the mall.

Unlike Amber, I wasn't planning to do my errands mid run, but I did bring my little backpack to carry produce at the market. I thought about running from my house to downtown, but I just couldn't imagine running back with heavy produce (and possibly berries) jostling around on my back.

It felt good to mesh my to do list together a bit. And here's my fancy new running top again! (You may find it on a Target clearance rack near you).

The weather was iffy this morning in the high 50s with some clouds. I ran to the river path, hopped on a bark loop for a few miles and finished the last several miles along the other side of the river. 8.6 miles completed in 1:11 at an 8:17 pace and it actually felt pretty good! I'm definitely on the mend.

I chugged some of that Trader Joe's pomegranate green tea I brought with me and a chunk of a protein bar. Then I grabbed my backpack and headed to the Farmer's Market. There were tons of things I wanted to buy (flavored goat cheeses, chocolate chewies mini cookies, flower bouquets, baguettes, etc), but I refrained.

There were a ton of beautiful flowers today. I wanted to buy them all.

Especially when a woman passed me carrying one of these Asiatic Lilies.

And of course I had to snag some of this cinnamon raisin challah bread. Such a brilliant combination of goodness. And this people, is why I do not lose those unwanted 5 or so pounds. :)

And here's my loot! For about $20 I picked up cinnamon raisin challah bread, raspberries, spinach, broccoli, cucumber and jumbo sugar snap peas. Fresh, local stuff can be spendy, but worth it, especially when you know your money is going straight to the farmer and its workers who live in your community.

I spent about an hour at the market and got in over a mile of walking. Then I drove to the mall and parked in one of the furthest parking spots. And I decided to run another few miles! 2.74 miles later, I was done and ready to tackle those errands, red faced and all.

I snagged some new mascara and eyeliner from Sephora and some on sale flip flops (to replace the ones I chucked after wearing them for 3 weeks through Europe) at American Eagle. I love when the cashier rings things up and they're half their ticket price!

I got home and did a great 25 min session of yoga to work out the kinks.

So all in all, I got in...
8.6+2.74 = 11. 34 mi in 1:35ish.
Pace - 8:20ish
Knocked out 3 errands on my to do list!

What'd you guys do?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Race Photos and a Stuffy Nose

There's nothing sexier than sniffing all day and night long, sneezing and breathing out of your mouth only, no? I'm trying to take it easy over here...promise. I even skipped Tuesday night's run and only did a mini hike with my mentee and about 35 min of Jillian strength stuff last night. See nothing too taxing!

But this whole cold situation better be gone by tomorrow like yesterday. I want to get my run on STAT! Yeah well, I wrote that last night and seeing as how I'm still sick, I decided to take a sick day. And I tell you, I'm actually resting. Taking the dog for a walk is the most strenuous thing I've done all day. Halleluiah!

In other news, I got some of the best race photos in my inbox yesterday! I usually look hideous (IMO) or totally exhausted, but these are all pretty peppy looking if I do say so myself.

Sorry for the wonky layout below. I need to learn html. Click to enlarge. I kind of love the aerial photo showing the 5,000 or so runners starting the race.











And if you don't read Jess Constable's Makeunder My Life, I highly suggest you pop over there today. Besides designing some beautiful jewelry (which I'll be posting a review of soon), she also has a fabulous blog. Today she's talking about her struggles with weight. Lord knows that if you're a woman, you've probably struggled with weight in some way.

I really respect women who are able to come out about their struggles and show them to others. We only grow stronger when we share and learn from each other. Weight and body issues are something I've struggled with since elementary school and I still find myself not appreciating what I have enough. Hence the need to get some serious sweat on when I'm sick as a dog.

Okay, time for a green monster smoothie and bed! Happy Thursday!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

When will I learn?

I'm not really sure. This has been going on for a while. What is it you ask?

Sickness. I'm still sick with that cold I had as of LAST Tuesday. Ugh. The culprit? I'm chalking it up to too much exercise and go-go-going non stop.

This isn't the first time I've been stubborn or not willing to take a break. It happens a lot. I just don't usually get sick from it. Usually all of that combined with stress will do it, but I haven't been unusually stressed lately, so who knows.

Either way, I realize this cold that refuses to leave is a result of me not allowing my body a break. Wednesday I'm taking a day off exercise, but I know that one day doesn't usually fix it.

What do you do to force yourself to slow down?
Here's an example of my Sunday that was jam freakin' packed.

8am - walk dog
9am - easy 5 mi run w/ friends
10am - Trader Joe's
11am - clean bike/chain/etc
12:30pm - Leave for 25 mi bike ride (2 decent hills, one of which is about 6mi long over all but does have some flat sections)
2:30pm - home, eat sandwich for lunch
3-4:30pm - help manfriend make planter box, plant flowers in pots
5pm - Jerry's Home Improvement for veggies and more flowers to plant
5:45pm - grocery store for kabob stuff
6:15-7:30 - kabob preparation and cooking

The only time I really sat down for more than 5 min wasn't until 7:30pm. It was a long day. Perhaps I should get better at taking naps or chill on the couch occasionally. Apparently, people do that??

Anywho, I really need to get this whole sickness out of the way so I can get down to marathon training. Better listen to the bod because in this case, the bod is boss!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Kabob Me!

You know it's summer when the grill is all you need! Yesterday, after a lot of exercising and yard work, manfriend and I decided kabobs would be the perfect dinner option. It was a first for me, so I popped by Food Network to check out a few of their videos on kabobs. Here's a good basics video.

And the how to:
1. Start up that grill!

2. Soak your skewers in water for 20-30 min

3. Chop large chunks of...
-chicken
-red onion
-bell pepper
-fresh pineapple

You can also add mushrooms, tomatoes, shrimp, asparagus tips, etc.

4. Marinate your chicken in bbq sauce or other desired sauce for 30+ min.

5. Now the fun part...assembly! Add all of your items to create a fun colorful meal on a stick!

I also wanted to grill up some asparagus w/ e.v.o., sea salt and cracked pepper.

6. When your grill is at medium heat, place the kabobs on, cooking each side 3-4 minutes. The asparagus needs a bit more time depending on your desired level of crunchiness.

7. Now get to work! The pineapple made these kabobs amazing. I highly recommend snagging a fresh pineapple. Last night was also my first time cutting a pineapple. There's a first time for everything.

On a side note, if you have a TJ's near you, I recommend picking up some of this pomegranate green tea. It has the perfect amount of sweetness.


What's your favorite summer meal/food to make? I'm looking forward to whipping up some cold pasta salads. My fav includes rainbow spiral noodles, green pepper, red onion, olives, chopped salami and a vinagrette dressing.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Another half bites the dust!

Today I remembered what it's like to wake up early for a race. Not as early as some races (4am wakeup calls for San Diego and Nashville, if I recall correctly), but still 5:45am had my body awake at 4am, going in and out of sleep just waiting for the alarm to go off.

Breakfast was 1/2 a banana, 1 homemade banana/blueberry muffin and a handful of walnuts, almonds and macadamia nuts. On the side was Emergen-C and some cold meds. The chest and throat weren't feeling so hot, but I knew the legs could manage the mileage.

The manfriend was super excited to be up and out the door by 6:20 am.

I think my camera got set on some funny color setting because all of these have an interesting blue/green tint to them. Understanding your camera is overrated... ;)

Jessica and I run a very similar pace and have run several other races together. Because of my sickness and her triathalon last weekend, we both agreed that if either one of us felt stronger, she could go ahead.

Helvetia Half Marathon is held about 25 min outside Portland, OR and takes you through some beautiful country roads, past the Helvetia Tavern (serving the burgers at the finish line), Helvetia Winery and even The Roloff Family Farm!

It was cool to start and end the race at the Hillsboro Stadium because spectators and racers were everywhere stretching, chatting and hanging around.

It was a warm day here (in the high 60s by the end of the race), but a beautiful course with gently rolling hills. Thanks to the last few months of several hilly 10 milers, the legs felt strong the entire race. At times, the miles were just ticking by. All of a sudden we were at nine miles.

From there on out, I was feeling strong, using my Luna Moons for fuel and incentive to get to the next mile. I pushed ahead of Jess and just kept on truckin. I ended up finishing a little over a minute faster than her. Here I am with 1 mile to go focused on the road ahead.

I decided not to hit puke threshold, but pushed the legs to keep the pace strong. I finished with a time of 1:47:41 and 14/319 in my age division. It was definitely one of my stronger times, if not the best.


When we finally made it home, I took a much needed nap. It's amazing how much a hard 13 miles takes out of you. I'm hoping to take it easy tomorrow, but I have a serious need to get on my bike and spin.

I hope everyone is having a great weekend! I'm testing out one of the new design templates blogger is offering. So far, so good. Thanks for the new options, Blogger!