Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Peanut Butter Jelly Time!!!

Do any of you watch Family Guy?  I have never really watched it myself, but there is a scene in one of the episodes that Adam loves that involves the singing of the "Peanut Butter Jelly Time" song.

In case any of you are curious (after this riveting description, how could you NOT be!?!?), here's the video:

Adam plays this scene anytime he has just issued a big report at work.  My understanding is that it's a way to celebrate the relief felt from achieving a big, stressful undertaking.  With that in mind, yours truly was ready to put this video on repeat mode last night after work.  (For all of you finance/accounting aficionados out there that were wondering, I just completed February month-end close.)  Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you another day closer to retirement!!!

I kid, I kid.  Okay, with how much my to-do list keeps growing instead of shrinking every day, maybe I only half-kid.  But in any event, I am ready to take a deep breath and catch up on blogging and my life!

Some updates:

Esprit de She

I am so excited to be a race ambassador for the inaugural Esprit de She race in Chicago on July 18!

This race's festivities are pretty much the perfect summertime festival:

An evening 5K or 10K run... followed by a post-race night market that includes a bubbly bar, tapas, and music... including a community night market showcasing fresh produce, local artisans, and creative projects.

How awesome is that!?!?  I am all about night markets and local food, especially during Chicago's heavenly summer.  This race has awesome swag, too - instead of the usual race t-shirt, they are giving out a custom-designed tank top and a tote bag.  Very cool.

Esprit de She has races in several other locations, as well, including Houston, Denver, San Francisco, Atlanta, etc., etc., etc.  For all of your multi-athletes out there, they also have a triathlon in Naperville on June 9, plus some duathlons and triathlons in various other locations and dates.  (Being a multi-athlete is on the list for me to accomplish one of these days...)  But until then -

Come run with me on July 18th!!!  It is going to be a blast!

The Need For Speed

Cue the obligatory quote from "Top Gun":

After taking a month-long hiatus from running back in January, I've been gradually getting back into my running groove.  My injuries have shown a lot of improvement, although I know that I still have to stay on top of my strength-training and stretching.

I was apprehensive about how long it would take me to regain my conditioning.  The endurance has actually come back pretty quickly - I ran 8 miles this past Sunday and felt good.  But my speed (relatively speaking, of course) has REALLY declined.

My comfortable long-run pace, which I was never enamored with, is a good 30-60 seconds per mile slower these days than before.  It hasn't shown much improvement over the last month, either.  Why is speed so difficult to build or regain, but so quick to slip through your fingers/legs?!?  It's frustrating.

I've been purposely not doing speedwork this past month since I didn't want to jump back into it too quickly after my running layoff.  But with my first race of the year coming up on April 20, I am really itching to do whatever I can now to regain my tempo.

Too bad it's snowing gangbusters here in Chicago today otherwise I wanted to do some speedwork tonight.  (On that note, I think I am the only peon that is working a full day in the office today.  Everybody else is working from home or leaving early - not me!  But thank goodness for public transportation on days like today.)  Is it spring yet?

Blogging the Hawks?

My Chicago Blackhawks fever is at an all-time high.  (Yes, even for me.  I know that's hard to believe.)

Brandon Saad, my new favorite Hawks player

I could go into ridiculous detail about the Hawks and their incredible start to the season.  But I'll share just one notable occurrence here.

On February 19th the Hawks played the Vancouver Canucks in a game that would tie the NHL record for best start to a season if the Hawks won.  The game started at 7:30 PM.  Adam and I got tickets off of Stub Hub at about 7:00 PM.  We took a mad (and I mean MAD) dash down Madison (living so close to the United Center is the bestest).  Got to our seats just in time to hear Jim Cornelison belt out the national anthem.  And then later...

Hawks win!!!  Hawks win!!!
It's so addicting.  Seriously.  My Hawks fever is to the point that I am considering starting a second blog just to focus on hockey.  Never mind that I've barely had time to focus on my running blog, let alone a Hawks blog.  (Erin, how the heck do you simultaneously maintain both a running blog AND a fashion blog?!?!?)

But... you only live once, right?

Just for giggles, I went ahead and reserved http://herecomethehawks.blogspot.com.  There's nothing there just yet, but I will be pondering its commencement in the coming weeks.  All Hawks ideas and suggestions welcome!!!

And finally...

Despite everything that I said about not wanting to run the Chicago Marathon this year, I have to admit that there have been moments where I've second-guessed myself.  All along I had anticipated that registration would sell out within a day or two, so my decision would be a foregone conclusion for this year.  But now that they've got this registration lottery open right now for the remaining 15,000 spots, I started toying with the idea of entering the lottery.  Just to let fate really decide.

At the end of the day, I'm not going to enter the lottery.  I wouldn't want to take away a registration spot from someone who REALLY wants to do it.  But, alas, I do miss the days when you didn't have to worry about setting your alarm to register for any race nine months in advance!

I do think the marathon trend and all these big races with their skyrocketing fees are finally starting to get too popular for their own good.  But, that's a whole other topic for another day.

Happy snow day to all!!!


  1. Yeah, it's crazy how marathons are getting more expensive, yet selling out in a few hours. I wonder if Chicago will be $200+ next year? They would probably get the same demand as this year. Glad to hear you are back running, don't worry your speed will return. You are wise not to jump back into speedwork. Most coaches recommend working on endurance first and not doing speedwork until you get a good base. Anyway, go Hawks!

    1. Good good, I could easily see Chicago being $200+ next year because they will always have the demand. After this year's debacle I am worried that they will go to a lotto registration system next year, too. =(

      Thank you for the encouragement regarding my speed, and you are right as it is already starting to come back after just a few speedwork days. =)

      Go Hawks!!!!!!! =D

  2. I love your very long explanation of what Peanut Butter Jelly Time means :)

    That's great that your endurance came back so quickly! 8 miles sounds like a lot after a month off! And good that you're feeling good enough to run regularly again. I have no advice for speed, since I've yet to actually gain much myself, but I'm sure it'll come back eventually.

    Espirit de She sounds like a lot of fun! That's cool that you're an ambassador for it.

    1. LOL, I'd never really heard of PBJT until fairly recently, so I was going under the assumption that most others hadn't, either!

      You are making HUGE strides with your training and you are going to ROCK your races this year!!! I saw that you are doing the Illinois Marathon Relay, that is awesome!!! And I've heard many times that just with normal training, our speed will still improve. Here's hoping that is very true for all of us!!!

  3. My speed always come back after I up my mileage. Even without speedwork! Something about building my endurance makes me able to go faster during shorter distances.

    As for running two blogs, you may have noticed I rarely post in my fitness blog :-) I'm happy if I manage twice a month!

    1. Oh my gosh, the Illinois Marathon is coming up quickly now!!! How are you feeling about your training this time around, you marathon veteran!?!?!?

      Heck, I have been having trouble posting to my one and only blog once a week, LOL. But your fashion blog has really taken off!!! It is one of my favorite blogs to read!!!

  4. I will see you at espirit de she! :)

    1. Woo hoo, yay for us Esprit de She race ambassadors!!! Can't wait to see you there, too!!!

  5. It's not quite peanut butter and jelly time for me. Our close just started and will go through next week. Ugh! The joys of accounting!!

    Yay for espirit de she! Looks like a fun time :)

    You are smart to base build before attempting any speed work. I'm sure you'll get speedier as you run more consistently injury free too :) no sense in rushing anything.

    1. Oh no!!! I completely feel your pain about the joys of accounting. Do you have auditors coming in to work with you, too? Because I've learned that there is so much work in just preparing for the audits. Sigh.

      I hope you join in the festivities at Esprit de She!!! It would be awesome to catch up with you there!!!

      Thank you for the well wishes on the speedwork, and I need to take a few pages out of your notebook with all the improvements that you've made recently. Would love to find a race soon in which I could rely on your pacing services, too!!!

    2. We will have an audit in May.. YAY sox! ugh

      Im thinking about the Espirt de She.. not sure yet because of some possible travel that usually happens around that time of year.

      YES! I'd love to run something with you and help you break your PRs!!! :)