Saturday, March 5, 2016

Coffee talk - March edition

Blogging is so much about momentum for me. When I was on vacation last week, I was unplugged from email and social media for the better part of four days. This caused my blogging mojo to fiercely deteriorate! So after taking a total of 10 days off from the blogosphere, I am attempting to push back in.

Let's keep things free-flowing today! I'm linking up with CocoDeborah, and Lynda for the March edition of Coffee Talk.
The Ultimate Coffee Date
This link-up asks: "If we were having [insert choice of beverage here] together, I would tell you..."

There's a lot to catch up on! But I will keep things cursory to avoid being too, too overwhelming on a lovely Saturday morning. =) First off...

Vacation came with some unexpected adventures. I was aboard the Legends of Pittsburgh cruise last weekend, which sailed from Miami to Key West and Cozumel. Enroute to Cozumel, our cruise ship picked up 16 Cuban migrants. They were floating on a makeshift raft about 50 miles north of Cuba.

James Harrison posted pictures of the rescue in action, which caused the news media to pick up the story (examples hereherehere, and here.)

Here is one of James's snapshots:
Source
The word on the street was that the migrants had been at sea for a couple of weeks. It must have been terrifying for them. According to port authorities in Mexico, migrant rescues occur about once a week!

When the incident happened, I had joked that a cruise ship was a nice means by which to be rescued. But in all seriousness, we learned that some migrants actually decline assistance. This is because being rescued also means they will be turned over to the authorities, with all the resulting consequences.

I can only imagine the desperate situations these migrants must have been experiencing to even attempt such dangerous escapes. It really puts things into perspective.

Crazy rescues aside, the Legends of Pittsburgh cruise was a good time. The themed-cruise experience definitely deserves its own post. In summary, Adam and I got to meet dozens of Pittsburgh sports legends, hear their stories, and get to know them a bit behind the scenes. Everyone was incredibly personable, friendly, and down-to-earth. It was an awesome experience.

And speaking of James Harrison, here's one of my photos with him:
James is an unexpectedly funny guy! He's definitely a guy who pulls no punches in life. It was fascinating to talk to him and hear his perspectives.

Just one quick tidbit on James - he deadlifts 650 pounds. Wow!

Much more to come on the cruise.

Racing season is about to get underway! Next week at this time, I'll be running my second go-around of the Rock N Roll DC Half Marathon. (I'm already stalking the weather forecast, which is currently listing a chance of rain with temps in the upper 60s. That would be better than last year. But there's still plenty of time for things to take a turn for the worse. My rain jinx has historically proven to be indefatigable!)
The following Monday will be my first-ever Pi-Day fun run, filled with pizza pie and traditional pie. Oh yeah!!!
St. Patrick's Day is just around the corner which means it's almost time for the Shamrock Shuffle. Bring on the green men!
I am excited for my second running of Shamrock. If all goes well, I hope to use it as an opportunity to test out the impact of all my recent lifting and incline work.

On a similar note - after taking a year off from the 5K, my nemesis, I am considering making another attempt soon at breaking my ancient 5K PR. Again, a topic for a whole other discussion to come.

I've got a fun weekend ahead of me! Today, Adam and I are going to brunch at Wishbone, which is one of our favorite neighborhood restaurants. Afterwards, we'll be heading to Johnny's Icehouse West to cross off a long-time item on my Blackhawks fan to-do list: watch an open practice.
Later tonight, we're meeting some friends for dinner at a local Korean BBQ joint, followed by helping my friend Jack celebrate his birthday at a neighborhood karaoke dive bar.

Tomorrow, I've got an 11-miler on the morning agenda. In the afternoon, we're heading to the United Center to watch the Blackhawks take on the Detroit Red Wings.

Coming up later this week - Adam and I are going to watch 42nd Street. I am so excited! In preparation, I've been listening to the soundtrack every day. "Come and meet those dancing feet..."

Your turn! What would you tell me over coffee or your beverage of choice?

32 comments:

  1. Migrant rescue aside, that cruise looks like a blast. We need a "Blog Legends" cruise haha! After all these years of resisting it, I am feeling the itch to run the Shamrock Shuffle. Alas this year I'm out of town. Go for the gusto on that 5k PR!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Marcia! I would LOVE a "Blog Legends" cruise. That would be AWESOME! There'd always be someone to take your picture. =D Bummer that you are out of town for Shamrock this year but I look forward to seeing you at Cinco de Miler!!! Thanks for the encouraging words on the 5K PR!!!

      Delete
  2. That migrant rescue is crazy! And scary. The lengths people will go to for a better life.

    So I was pretty impressed with my 177# deadlift. Oh well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Crazy and scary, indeed! It really makes me consider how much we take for granted living in the States!

      I am SUPER impressed that you can deadlift 177 pounds!!! HOLY COW, you are a strong woman!!!!!

      Delete
  3. Oh wow I would not think that a cruise ship would be allowed to pick up people like that! I would think they would call the coast guard. Good for you for unplugging for a few days. Thanks for joining us for coffee date today!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Likewise - I was surprised, too! When the captain first made the announcement about assisting a ship in distress, I thought it was a fishing boat or something similar. I was shocked to see it was just a makeshift raft! Thank you so much for co-hosting the Coffee link-up, I am loving reading everyone's thoughts!

      Delete
  4. I love that graphic about pie! Thanks for the reminder to find a St. Patrick's Day race! Good luck with your 11 mile run tomorrow.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Meg! That graphic about pie is pretty much the story of my life, LOL. Isn't it amazing that St. Patrick's Day is upon us so soon? Where has the time gone? I hope you had a fantabulous weekend, too!!!

      Delete
  5. I guess I've never considered a cruise ship as a rescue boat. Thanks for the reminder about Pi-Day. We celebrated last year with the kids...eating pie. Good luck on your race. Rain is forecasted for my next half too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I never considered a cruise ship as a rescue boat, either! It was shocking! There is no better way to celebrate Pi Day than to eat pie, for sure. Your kids must really enjoy that!!! =D Thank you so much, HoHo - good luck on your race, too, and fingers crossed that your weather forecast will improve!

      Delete
  6. Glad you had a good time on your cruise! Sounds like you should have a fun weekend/week. Enjoy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. KAYLA!!! SO GOOD TO HEAR FROM YOU, yay that you are blogging again!!! Thank you so much - I hope you had a great weekend, too, and that you are getting some time to relax in between all of your crazy work hours!!!

      Delete
  7. What is your 5K PR? I would be happy to pace you to try to help you beat it this spring :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are too kind, Erica! That would be awesome, thank you so much! My 5K PR is 25:55, so beating it would mean an average pace of better than 8:20. I'm considering Ravenswood, but it's a week before the Pittsburgh Half Marathon so the timing isn't great. Let me know if you know of any other good PR-worthy 5Ks in the spring and hopefully we can get the schedules to align!

      Delete
  8. I am definitely in the "wish it was really pie" category. :-)
    The 5K is my nemesis too! I think my PR is from 2005. I came close in 2012 but no luck. I have endurance but no speed!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL, I was thinking the "wish it was really pie" category looked kind of small, do you agree? =) ARGH on the 5K! It is frustrating because there is so little room for error in 3.1 miles. I've definitely found endurance is easier to build than speed. Here is hoping both of us are able to earn new 5K PRs sooner rather than later!!!

      Delete
  9. Wow, I can't even imagine picking up migrants while on a cruise, it almost seems unreal! I haven't been on a cruise, it's a fun trip!

    I'll be running RnR DC too, this is my first time! I heard about the weather but fingers crossed that it's warm and dry on Saturday!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Picking up the migrants definitely still seems unreal to me, too! It was such a contrast - you've got an entire cruise ship of vacationers, then you pick up some folks fighting for their lives. Total opposite ends of the spectrum!

      YAY that you are running RnR DC this weekend, too!!! The weather forecast is looking nicer now, here is hoping it STAYS that way. When will you be arriving into town? Would love to meet up in person, even if just for a minute or so. I'm flying in early Friday afternoon and will be at the race expo around 3:00 or so. Let me know!

      Delete
  10. Wow, that is crazy picking up those migrants. I can see them not wanting to get assistance.

    That is crazy awesome James can deadlift that much!

    Have your runs been getting naturally faster due to the strength and incline work? Is that why you want to tackle the 5K PR? For me, the 5K is something I really have to focus on with speedwork. We've raced so many, the PRs don't come as naturally anymore (which is why I am asking if your pace has really dropped :) ).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We were discussing the other day the whole "hierarchy of needs" spectrum. Choosing to be rescued or not must depend on what point you've reached on that hierarchy, yes?

      I can't even begin to imagine deadlifting that kind of weight. I wonder what the gyms look like at NFL training centers!!!

      My runs have been feeling less labored and more stable due to the strength and incline work. I don't have a sense yet for how it might translate into pace improvements since I haven't been racing or doing actual speedwork. Hence why I'm interested to test things out and gauge where I am at! And 5Ks are definitely my biggest challenge!!! But as much as you say the 5K is something you have to focus on, it sure seems that you've had a lot of recent success with yours. =)

      Delete
    2. Yes! It probably does depend on that. I just can't imagine being in that position. Totally brings things in to perspective, like you said!

      That is great your runs have been feeling better. YAY!

      Ha, I've had success with 5Ks lately because I've been focusing on them - the last one I followed an 8 week speedwork program, and I did 5K focused speedwork for my one in November, too :)

      Delete
    3. Between speedwork and hillwork, we are just looking at hitting all the types of workouts that I used to try to find reason to avoid, LOL!

      Delete
  11. That's so crazy your cruise picked up the migrants. It's so sad people feel being on a makeshift raft is their only hope for a better life.

    I'd recommend waiting on the5k until you can put in at least 4-8 solid weeks of dedicated 5k training + speed work. I've found I've had success with the distance only when dedicating time for it. Half marathon training never yielded PRs for me in the 5k because it's just not focused enough. Could be a good summer project especially when the temps get warm again and long runs seem too much in the summer :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's scary that those migrants thought they could navigate the ocean on that kind of makeshift raft. People were already getting seasick just from being aboard the cruise ship, you know? Very sad.

      Appreciate your thoughts on the 5K target. Good call on it being a nice summer project when long runs are torturous in the heat! It seems fall is always my best racing season in general. You too?

      Delete
  12. I've recently been deadlifting 40 pounds, so I'd say James Harrison really has nothing on me *brushes shoulder off* Hahaha. That's bonkers!! I can't even fathom lifting a sixth of that!

    I actually went to Wishbone for brunch this weekend, too! Though I went to the north location, not the West Loop location.

    Bethany @ Accidental Intentions

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. James Harrison has NOTHING on you!!! =D And hey, in all seriousness, when it comes to running, I bet we'd have an edge on him in any half marathon. It's all about what we focus on in training, yes?

      Ooooh, I've been to the Wishbone up north, too! Both locations are really good neighborhood staples. I hope your brunch was fantastic! =)

      Delete
  13. 640# is a lot...but how much does he weight? If he weighs 320 then percentage-wise he and I deadlift the same :-) It's fun for me to put it into perspective like that!

    Don't you wonder what the discussion was with the cruise ship captain to determine if they were going to offer aid to the migrants? I think it's so sad that people still have to "escape" Cuba on makeshift rafts.

    As for the 5K PR, Charlyn and Kim's advice makes sense but I have also gotten PRs without doing 5K-focused training. However, I still do speedwork even if it's not 5K-focused speedwork. Which actually makes me wonder what would happen if I actually trained for a 5K specifically. Maybe I'll make that my focus this summer, too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. According to James's NFL profile, he weighs 242 - meaning his 650 lb deadlift is about 2.7x his weight. Pretty impressive!

      From what I understand, the makeshift raft was displaying a white flag on it when it was spotted. So I guess that makes the decision on what to do a little easier! Agreed, it is really sad people are still trying to escape Cuba in that manner. =(

      If you still do speedwork regularly plus lift, I'm not at ALL surprised you are still getting 5K PRs without specific focus! How could you not??? And I am all about that Ridge Run you and Pete mentioned, if you want to go ahead and plan on making it a target this fall!

      Delete
  14. Wow! Sounds like an exciting cruise! 650 pound deadlift is amazing! Great pic of the two of you! Have a great time in DC and good luck this weekend!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Sharon! Really appreciate it! I am still in shock at the concept of 650 lbs, and am still stalking the DC weather forecast. =D

      Delete
  15. Wow - that was certainly an eventful cruise! My heart really goes out to people who think that their only option is something like a makeshift raft and the ocean.

    I hope the weather was kind to you for your events this month!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much, Steph! Yes, it really put things into perspective with how much we take for granted in our everyday lives to see those migrants. =( Cheers to good weather for all of us in all of our events, yes??? =D

      Delete