It’s Oh Three Oh Four… 03/04.

Yep, It’s getting harder and harder to come up with blog titles. Figured I’d share a little update on the last 7 weeks. How on earth did I ever blog multiple times in a week when I can’t even post once a month now?

I’ll start on the fitness front.

I started running again! I ran my first miles of 2019 in Orlando Florida! More on that at the end of this post.

first miles of 2019

I have had some mild posterior tibial tendonitis (self diagnosed) but I’m doing a good job of keeping on top of it. I’ve been super diligent about strengthening and stretching. I found some great stretches and exercises online here and here and have been doing them every other day.

I ran a trail 5k last weekend (the Cold Feat 5k which is held in Staten Island’s Greenbelt) which was muddy and hilly but still lots of fun.

omg another hitch-hiking thumb

hitch-hiking thumb again


hitch hiking thumb

post race selfie!

I also finally took on the challenge of incorporating strength workouts into my life which is something I mentioned wanting to do in my last post. After listening to a podcast where the guest was a fitness instructor for an app called FITON, I bought the app. (there was a promo code so it ended up being a lot cheaper for a one year membership). I love it! I’ve completed 6 classes so far in the last 10 days. Most are bodyweight only classes but some use light dumbbells which I have. Some classes are as short as 16 minutes while others are around 30 minutes. There’s a really nice variety. You can choose from pliates, yoga, total body strength, dance/barre, cardio, and more. I’m really trying to strengthen my hips and glutes which will help as well in the ankle tendonitis department. Oh and core! I’m finally working on my core! And lots of arm work too. It’s felt so seamless which is bizarre to me because I’m 45 and haven’t been this jazzed about strength training EVER! Maybe it’s that I feel like it’s a really small commitment of my day and so easy to squeeze in. The instructors are very chill too. Hoping to stick with it for the entire year.

I had one really good run last month and came home and signed up for a half marathon because I guess I was having that “runner’s high”. Probably a very stupid thing to do but I am hoping i’ll get there. My attitude was “hey i’ve signed up and paid a lot for races that I couldn’t run in the past so what do I have to lose?” It’s the Love Run half down in Philadelphia. I ran it in 2014, 2015 and 2016 and I was signed up to run in 2017 and then got injured and missed it. Good news is they also have a 7k distance now so if I needed to I could drop down and not lose out completely. I completed my first “long run” of 5 miles last Tuesday and struggled for sure. I’m looking to do a 6 miler tomorrow. and then 8 miles next week. And a few short runs in between. I’m really just looking to complete the race so it’s a bare bones approach and not one I’d ever recommend 🙂

This was the run that I felt so great on that I went home and signed up for the Love Run Half Marathon

This was a run that got interrupted by a phone call from Mr. SOTSS. I don’t usually answer my phone but he rarely calls so I got worried. Ended up being nice to have a long walk break in between.

a nothing special run

My first long training run of the year and NEW kicks….New Balance 1080s. They’re currently being tested. I’ve got a couple of months to decide how I feel about them. 

For additional fitness I have been hiking here and there, and this past weekend Mr SOTSS and I took his girls skiing. So I got a good amount of exercise in traversing the mountain.


Found this heart shaped rock on one of the hikes

night hike!

In house-related news we repainted our back sunroom.

I give Mr. SOTSS props for closing off the room to the rest of the house, donning a respirator and sanding the layers of paint for a few hours. That was definitely the hard part. I just rolled on the paint.

Before and after floor closeup

It looks great except that after about a week a few little areas chipped and we’re now a little concerned that the prepwork we did (Mr. SOTSS spent a few hours sanding the old paint layers down with an orbital sander) wasn’t enough. I read that if there was an oil-based layer of paint underneath and you’re painting with a latex paint/primer that it could cause chipping without a special primer. Anyway, we’ll just wait it out and see if it continues. It could also be that the paint can take a full 30 days to cure and we only gave it 2 days before returning furniture and using the floor again.

In work-related news Mr. SOTSS and I attended the FASTSIGNS National Convention back in January in Orlando.

Learning a lot and enjoying some free lunches lol because isn’t that why everyone goes to a convention?

We learned a lot that will help us refine some of our business practices and grow the business too. I’m enjoying helping him with graphic design but sooooo happy I don’t have to do the sign production anymore. That was really challenging for me. And in my personal graphic design business, after a little lull in the new year, things are finally picking up! Whew! Freelancing can be quite the roller coaster.

In hair news I found an awesome new product line for my curls thanks to a sponsored ad in my Facebook newsfeed. Back in December I ordered some products from Lus Brands and can’t tell you how pleased I am. I got their travel kit size to try of both the kinky and the curly products and I mix a dollop of each into my hair when it’s soaking wet right after the shower. I scrunch and air dry and that’s it. The shampoo and conditioner are great too.

curly hair don’t care

Other than that it’s been the usual…

Cleaning up after dogs…

muddy doodle

Oh I wasn’t supposed to go on the furniture until you gave me a bath? My bad.

oops muddy

Hi mom. Can you let me in. I’m done digging in the yard.

Walking dogs…

Cuddling with dogs…

cuddles with duncan

Playing with dogs…

wanna play

hmm, I think we have a toy hoarder situation

Soccer anyone?

and clearly taking too many pictures of dogs. 🙂

Do you have any races coming up?

Do you like DIY projects or do you like to just hire someone?

First, sorry I’ve been MIA for the last 3 weeks. Truthfully, I’ve been unmotivated to post lately. But I thought I’d share my recent experience with the new foot doctor I saw last week and also just ramble a little about what’s been on my mind today.

I was walking Duncan earlier and my mind was all over the place. I was trying to solve a million things and feeling frustrated that I was getting nowhere with every single thing. I was so annoyed and found myself being hard on myself for not coming up with solutions. And then it dawned on me that I can really be my own worst enemy.

My process is my process. I don’t always think linear and I sometimes take a while to process things before I can work it out. I don’t know why I struggle accepting it and just let it be. 

I know I’m a worrier, over thinker and over feeler…but I find myself constantly criticizing myself and being so hard on myself for being those things. Really! If I just accept that that’s my process I bet I could save myself a lot of angst. 

I think it’d be so cool if I could just “own it”. You know? Like  “Yeah, I’m going to get a bit whiny and emotional about this and hem and haw a bit but don’t worry….it’s just my process….and i’ll come through in the end.”

So that’s that.

Anyhoo. I’ll update you a bit about my #toewoes

My last run was over 2 months ago at the Big Chill 5k. I wanted to see if rest would help. Well actually I’m sort of lying. I ran for 3 whole minutes last week.


I was walking around the neighborhood just enjoying a warmish day and the break in my workload and just felt this urge to run. But after 3 minutes I chickened out for fear that my foot would really hurt. The original toe injury really barely bothers me these days…..but it’s the toe on my other foot that has now become the main pain and driving me insane! #intentionalrhyming 🙂 My feet have actually started to slightly improve over the last 2 months but I decided to find a new foot doctor to go to anyway.

Last Thursday I had my first appointment with the new doc and wow….he spent 45 minutes with me! He did a thorough exam and was able to determine a few things that might be causing me the toe/forefoot pain. I have high arches to start. I also have this thing called Equinus, which is a fancy word for tight calves and limited ankle dorsiflextion. This can cause extra pressure to the ball of the foot. Probably caused by a decade of running without stretching very much. I have neuromas on both feet which could be contributing to the pain as well. And lastly after doing x-rays he noticed that my metatarsal heads aren’t aligned well. Apparently they should sort of fan out and I have a few that are the same length and parallel which also puts too much pressure on my toe joints. The doc didn’t say this but i’m probably about 10 pounds heavier these days thanks to such a huge decrease in calorie burn and huge increase in making poor food choices and I know that means my feet have to support that extra weight which can’t be helpful. 🙁

He taped my feet up to support my arches and added metatarsal pads too to see if wearing that for a week would help.

I feel like a Geisha

I feel like a Geisha

Metatarsal pads

Metatarsal pads

Unfortunately after 4 days I couldn’t take it anymore and removed all the tape and pads. It wasn’t working. It actually made my feet feel worse. He also told me to start stretching my calves religiously 3 times a day, every single day. I’ve been doing that and I think it’s actually helped me some. I know it could take up to 12 weeks of this to really lengthen the calf muscles so probably too soon to tell. But wow! Go Google Equinus and read about all the things tight calves can exacerbate….it’s wild!

We talked about next steps and I have a follow-up appointment this Thursday. We might try orthotics to go along with the calf stretching and just see if that helps. He mentioned alcohol sclerosing injections or cortisone shots for the neuromas but I’m not ready for that as I don’t think the neuromas are my source of pain. It feels more like joint pain rather than nerve pain. Lastly he wants me to get some bloodwork to detect for possible arthritis.

It has been so long that I’ve woken up to yet another day of foot pain. Do you know the discomfort when you’re shoes are a few sizes too tight or your socks are so thick your feet hurt in the shoe or they’re too narrow? Yeah, that’s the discomfort I’ve felt in some capacity pretty much daily for 10 months.

Emotionally this has been quite a challenge. I spent the Spring and Summer doing yoga, swimming and riding my bike—trying to convince myself I was staying physically fit and emotionally fit too. But yoga started to irritate my feet (those downward dogs and planks!) and then the winter arrived and I stopped swimming and biking. I’m not getting any high-impact cardio at this point. I have managed to at least 2 night hikes a month though.

I love how the sky looks reddish.

I love how the sky looks reddish.

These Altra Lone Peak trail shoes have been amazing! They are the most comfortable things ever.

These Altra Lone Peak trail shoes have been amazing! They are the most comfortable things ever.

I’m missing my double digit long runs. Just yesterday I pulled up my iTunes playlists and there at the top was one titled “10 mile music”. I started to cry. I told you I’m an over feeler!

In the meantime I’ve been finding other outlets that aren’t exercise related. There’s been red wine and coloring book therapy.


And I set up a SnapChat account just so I can play around with the filters. Apparently fake eyelashes and a bow do wonders for me 🙂


Oh and carbs…lots of carbs.


Mr. SOTSS and I tried to politely share a tub of popcorn at the movies but we kept bumping in to each other. Now that I think about it maybe he was trying to deter me by grabbing my hand. LOL!

I’m about to have some major life changes happening over the next few months. I’ll save it for the next post. But Duncan will have to get used to being separated from me a little more. Or maybe I should say I will have to get used to being separated from Duncan a little more.

Am I going back to being a latchkey pup again?

Am I going back to being a latchkey pup again?



Sigh! It’s all good though. All exciting stuff!

How are you?

Tell me some highlights of your last 3 weeks.

I just wanted to pop in and wish you all a Happy Holiday season. I probably won’t be posting again until the new year. Thank you so much for coming here to visit.

I design my holiday card every year. It’s a creative outlet I look forward to and dread each year but somehow I figure it out. Duncan was the star of the card again this year.

a little sarcasm this year

a little sarcasm this year


This blog is another creative outlet for me and it’s really awesome when I hear from you and feel like I’ve got a little bonus world of friends.

Not much has happened since I told you about the Big Chill 5K earlier this month. Well Richard the elf and Jingles, his reindeer sidekick have been busy…



Crossword time

Crossword time

As a matter of fact I haven’t run a single mile since. I’m still nursing my poor feet. Bursitis, tendinitis….whatever I have, it’s so frustrating. But I do a bit of improvement in the last day or two so maybe by 2018 I’ll be ready to run? One good thing about all my injuries this year is that I don’t even think I fee sad anymore. My expectations have plummeted and I’ll just be happy to run at all next year.

I haven’t even been to yoga in over a week. And the last hike I went on was 3 weeks ago.

Duncan is still keeping up with his downward dog though

Duncan is still keeping up with his downward dog though

The seasons sure have changed as we officially enter Winter today…

Just a little side-by-side from a couple of weeks apart

Just a little side-by-side from a couple of weeks apart

I love the color contrast and pattern of the snow on the green shrub

I love the color contrast and pattern of the snow on the green shrub



it's getting cold

it’s getting cold

Since I’m on a running hiatus I thought I’d share some of my silly neighborhood holiday decorations runs with you.

There was the Candy Cane EditionIMG_7942

And a Walk in 2014 thanks to a sprained ankle.

And my innaugural holiday decorations run in 2013 where I discovered the square snowman…iceman

Well, I’ve got a client call in 22 minutes and then it’s I’m thrilled to be so busy in Q4 but it’s hard to find the time to enjoy the spirit of the season.

Here’s to a happy and healthy new year! I wish you all strong bodies and minds and less stress.

Happy Happy Holidays!

What is your most favorite part of the holiday season? Least favorite?

Do you make New Year’s Resolutions?

Hi there

Happy Friday. I’m trying to get my butt out the door for a 22 minute run today but have this annoying cold/congestion thing going on and I’m not as energetic as I’d like to be. But of course after not being able to run for so long I know i’ll have a hard time skipping a run because of the sniffles. I just need to blow my nose a few more times and then get out the door. 🙂

Last Sunday I ran 18 minutes and felt really great. It was drizzly but there was still a little crunch to the autumn leaves that have started to fall.



It made me a little weepy to know that after 10 consecutive years, I wasn’t able to run the Staten Island Half. Last year it poured but i was prepared for the inclement weather and finished with a smile on my face.

IMG_6676I remember running it in 2011 and made it a 20 miler in preparation for my very first marathon a month later. I ran 7 miles before the race began and when I crossed the finish line I was definitely hurting….

Gasping for air? LOL! Oh back in 2011 when I carried a water bottle. I loved that thing.

Gasping for air? LOL! Oh back in 2011 when I carried a water bottle. I loved that thing.

And in 2009 and 2010 I was just so darn happy

2009 Staten Island Half

2009 Staten Island Half

2010 Staten Island Half

2010 Staten Island Half

Good memories! Meanwhile I just looked at my race recaps page. Wow, no recaps for 2017? Cray Cray. I sure hope 2018 will be filled with recaps for all my favorite races. Maybe even some new ones. But I don’t want to get ahead of myself.

On Tuesday I ran for 20 minutes. Still increasing the time 2 minutes per run with success.torin-30I tried out a new pair of Altra Running sneakers for this run. Having enjoyed walking in the Altra Escalante for a few months, and then transitioning to running in them with success, I wanted to try a more cushioned pair. I bought the Torin 3.0. They felt AWESOME! But I’m actually going to exchange them for a half size up. The Escalante’s are an 8 but I think these felt a bit snug so I’m going to try and 8.5. Interestingly I read online (after I bought them) they actually suggest you get a half size up in this style. I’m now obsessed with this whole foot shaped toe box thing that Altra provides with their kicks. Altra also makes trail/hiking shoes that I’ve got my eye on. Gee, you’d think I was sponsored by them. Comfy feet has become more important to me than anything lately. The Altra sneakers also are a zero drop shoe, and while I wasn’t seeking out a zero drop when I got my first pair, I really like them. I’ll probably have to run a lot more miles in them to decide whether or not I think the zero drop helps or hinders my running stride.

And so I’ll continue adding 2 minutes per run and according to the calendar I’ll hit a solid 30 minutes on October 25th, my 44th birthday!!!! I remember when a 20 miler was a milestone….and now i’m excited to  reach 30 minutes. Injuries are humbling.

He's so tired of hearing me talk about my injuries

He’s so tired of hearing me talk about my injuries

Anyone with a birthday coming up?

Any zero drop shoe runners?

Favorite Season?