Hi there,

How is it already December 8th????

I’m really getting busier and busier and unfortunately blogging keeps taking a backseat. Instagram seems to be my favorite way of letting you all know what I’m doing and #spoiler alert: It’s pretty much taking selfies with my dog and my laptop.  

seriously?

seriously?

My "boss" breathing down my neck. :)

My “boss” breathing down my neck. :)

not exactly ergonomic working setup

not exactly ergonomic working setup

I’m growing my business, helping my boyfriend get his new business going (more on that to come next year), doing the holiday decorating, shopping, (some grinching), and all that jazz.

twinkly tree

twinkly tree

My 3 minute outside decorating setup

My 3 minute outside decorating setup

I did run a race last weekend which was awesome…

Let me tell you about the Big Chill 5K.

This was my 4th time running it. Well, actually in 2014 I walked it thanks to a sprained ankle. Mr. SOTSS introduced me to the event because he’s been running it for like 15 years!

staying warm in the gymnasium until the race starts

staying warm in the gymnasium until the race starts

The entry fee is a new toy of $15 or more.

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It’s so powerful to see the thousands of toys along the wall in the gymnasium (where you check in and get your race #.)

staying warm in the gymnasium until the race starts

toys galore!

The race doesn’t begin until 10am but you have to get there around 8:30-9 to get a parking spot and then after getting your race # you have to kill some time. Luckily they keep the bleachers open and it’s warm so it’s not too terrible. This race now has close to 7,000 participants.

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Some are walkers. They have an option for you pay for a timed chip and have a separate corral in front for the timed-chip runners. We didn’t bother so we stayed in the non-timed corral. I asked Mr. SOTSS if he would stay with me for the entire run. He’s not a fan of running with anyone (unless it’s his daughters because then he’s giddy that they want to run with him) but he agreed. I didn’t want him to feel like he was going too slow so I tried really hard to keep up a decent pace. It ended up being about a 9:30 pace.

:)

:)

My feet felt ok during the entire 5k. But by the evening they were aching.

After the race we went for breakfast and then back to the pups for a walk.

Chester's waiting his turn to sniff whatever it is that Duncan's sniffing.

Chester’s waiting his turn to sniff whatever it is that Duncan’s sniffing.

And for dinner Mr. SOTSS made a boatload of meatballs! (we both froze some for future meals)

The cook doing his thing

The cook doing his thing

There’s snow in the forecast for tomorrow. This might be my very last few true Autumn photo

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I haven’t run since the race and I’m probably going to refrain for a little longer. I’m just so darn sore and achy, especially my feet. I’m trying to stretch, foam roll and go to yoga as much as possible and trying to give my feet some rest. I know I’ll run at least one more time before the end of the year when I meet my friends in the city to do our annual holiday windows run. I blogged about last year’s Holiday Windows Run here , our 2015’s run here , our 2014 Holiday Windows run here and our 2013 run here

That’s all for now. I leave you with just a few more selfies with me and Duncan just in case you don’t check out my Instagram.

my support system

my support system

working our angles

working our angles

cheese

cheese

Have a great weekend!

What are you doing? Anything fun?

So happy to report that my back is almost back to 100%! I was seriously freaking out when i last posted.

So now I’m finally planning my comeback.

Clearly Duncan is thrilled about my comeback

Clearly Duncan is thrilled about my comeback

I’m looking forward to joining my hiking group tonight and returning to the yoga mat tomorrow morning. I’ll modify as needed for my back if I feel the need.

And I’ve resumed what I was just getting underway with at physical therapy for my toe 2 weeks ago when the back went out. Yesterday I did 3 sets of toe raises and took a brisk walk. I’ll incorporate some jumps soon. Just want to make sure my back is truly 100 percent first. The next couple of weeks will be all about stress and rest which is what my toe needs to continue repairing in its final phases of healing. I found this great post on the site irunfar.com about recovering from soft tissue injury that explains everything so clearly.

My plan is to actually start running a little in another week or 2. I’m going to follow the rule of 2 starting with a 10 minute easy run and adding 2 minutes to each subsequent run so long as I have no pain. (I’ll be taking at least one rest day in between runs to monitor the situation).

Over the next 3 monnths I’ve got three 5Ks that I’d like to run (slow and steady!) if possible. I have to say that I am being cautiously optimistic but even just the idea that I’ll be running again this year makes me so happy.

trenton-halfSince Mr. SOTSS has already signed up for the Trenton Half at the end of October I’m hoping I can run the 5K. (Here’s my recap from 20162014 and 2013.)

fall-flat-5k

Then there’s the Fall Flat 5K in mid-November (where I truly discovered what “conversational pace” was at last year’s race).

big-chillAnd finally the Big Chill 5K in December (you can read a little about last year’s race here. If all goes well I’ll think about increasing mileage next year.

Hi and Happy Monday!

I’ve been thinking more about my goals for 2017 and in addition to wanting to run with friends for that “conversational pace” at least once a month I also want to PR in the 5k. The reason behind this one is that I really want to be able to run just one time with Mr. SOTSS during a race. He agreed to slow down to a 9 minute pace for me if I can speed up to it. My current PR is 9:12 average pace so I just need to shave 12 seconds per mile from that.

This past weekend we ran the Big Chill 5k and while I wasn’t trying to run hard I ended up feeling good and finished in 30:11 (a 9:39 average pace per mile). img_7833

I love the long sleeve shirts they give. I now have 3 and use them for pajamas

I love the long sleeve shirts they give. I now have 3 and use them for pajamas

img_7839This was my 3rd time running the race and about the 8th time for Mr. SOTSS. It’s an awesome charity event. The “entry fee” is an unwrapped toy valued at $15 or more.

entry fee toys

entry fee toys

In 2014 I had to walk it because I had a sprained ankle. And last year I ran about a minute faster than this year finishing in 29 minutes. The entire morning was great except that Jane and her hubby weren’t there this year. But I did see my friend Amy quickly before and after.

The gymnasium at Rutgers University was packed with runners checking in. The back wall is all the toys donated

The gymnasium at Rutgers University was packed with runners checking in. The back wall is all the toys donated

I ran behind some elves

I ran behind some elves

After the race we went for breakfast and I was so happy for a cup of coffee because the cup I made before leaving the house in the morning had to get tossed thanks to some curdled cream….boo!

coffee...YES!

coffee…YES!

 

Other than the race Mr. SOTSS watched me put up my tree this weekend.

Keeping me company while I decorate my tree

Keeping me company while I decorate my tree

My newest ornament from my trip to Banff in September :)

My newest ornament from my trip to Banff in September :)

All done!

My tree is up!

We took the dogs for a few great walks in the park.

happy Chester

happy Chester

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me and my shadow....and my love and his shadow

me and my shadow….and my love and his shadow

I wonder if I look as happy as him when I run

I wonder if I look as happy as him when I run

We also went to a convention in Atlantic City for business but but enjoyed a nice meal and time away for a quick overnight. And I won $100 on the slots in the casino! Woot woot!

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pub food…yum!

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$100 payout in the casino and an overnight away with my sweets…. #winning

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How was your weekend? 

I’m just enjoying life as best as I can lately. I have a lot on my plate these days and my goal is just to try and keep my mindset in a Zen, happy place. Nobody wants a Scrooge around right? Here are 5 things to keep me happy lately:

  1. Running: Of course! I ran on Friday around the neighborhood for an easy 3 miles. fri-statsSaturday was a special run. It was the Big Chill 5k held on the campus of Rutgers University. Over 8,000 runners and walkers donate toys as their registration fee and then run. I got to see Jane and Mr. SOTSS ran as well.
    Me and Jane

    Me and Jane

    The entire back wall eventually is totally filled with donated toys

    The entire back wall eventually is totally filled with donated toys

    Me and Mr. SOTSS....It was super sunny and I was squinting just a tad.

    Me and Mr. SOTSS….It was super sunny and I was squinting just a tad.

    While I didn’t pay the extra fee for a timing chip, my Garmin let me know that I ran a 9:26 pace and finished in 29 minutes! That’s pretty unbelievable considering A. I’ve been so slow lately and B. there were so many walkers to dodge and weave that I for sure wasn’t able to run freely leaving me to believe that my time would be much slower.big-chill-statsIn addition to running I also registered for the Cherry Blossom 10-miler lottery. It’s a very popular race held in Washington D.C. in April. After the Big Chill, Mr. SOTSS and I joined Jane and her posse for breakfast and we made the decision to enter the lottery. I’m looking forward to it if I get in. I want 2016 to be the year I run lots of shorter distances and 10 miles has always been a favorite distance of mine yet I’ve never run an actual 10 mile race.

  2. Getting in the Holiday Spirit: Yup, I put up my tree and decorated a little outside while Duncan napped. That’s about right.
    Woke up for the picture

    Woke up for the picture

    Boy do I enjoy revealing all my ornaments each year that have been in hibernation for a year. And I had a new ornament to put up. The one I bought as a souvenir from my trip to Jamaica this past summer.jamaica-ornamentEach ornament brings back warm fuzzy feelings. Totally made me happy.

    Why yes! May ALL your miles be merry =)

    Why yes! May ALL your miles be merry =)

    Running chick!

    Running chick!

    marathon ornament

    marathon ornament

    Doodle ornament

    Doodle ornament

    outside-2

    My cute lil snowman

    outside-1

  3. Spending quality time with my honey: We spent lots of quality time this weekend which culminated in a lovely hike today with the dogs.
    The boys in my life

    The boys in my life

    Even though it's December it is still officially Autumn. 50s and sunny.

    Even though it’s December it is still officially Autumn. 50s and sunny.

    And speaking of doggies….

  4. Cute doggies!: I’ve had to do a large amount of freelance work today and seeing them cuddled so cute around me makes me happy.napping-doggies
  5. Family dinner: This past Thursday my mom and dad had me over for dinner and homemade apple crisp. apple-crispIt felt really good to tell them all of the things in my life lately….the good, the bad and the ugly. They are so supportive and just want me to be happy….so….I’ll try as hard as I can to keep this mindset that way.

So how was your weekend? Can you tell me 5 things that have made you happy lately?