/> SLO in Arkansas: November 2010

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Turkey Time!

We have had a fun and busy week. The holidays are upon us and all the fun filled activities that come with this wonderful time of year:) Tyson had a Thanksgiving feast at school last week. They did many fun activities and I was able to make food and enjoy his celebration with him at lunch.
The three year old classes combined to feast together.
We also had family in town to celebrate Thanksgiving with us this year. We were busy bees the few days before they arrived making snacks and getting the menu ready for the food. I know its not the best picture, but here is Silas teaching Tyson how to make the famous Orbison party mix. They did great and it turned out wonderful!
No, it didn't snow here, but Tyson is ready just in case! He is showing off his new winter jacket, hat, gloves and snow pants. Thank goodness it finally cooled off this week so it feels a little more like the holidays. We also bought the boys some sleds so we are well prepared for the winter weather and whatever it may throw at us this year!
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Monday, November 22, 2010

Dad's Heart

So I just got back from Nashville and one of the hardest weekends I have ever experienced in my life. Dad went in for heart surgery at Vanderbilt Friday morning. This picture was taken moments before they took him upstairs to prep for his surgery. I don't remember the last time we took a picture of just the Hensley family. Silas and I drove in early Friday morning and I jumped out of the car 30 seconds after they called him upstairs. We were able to surround dad and pray over him before they took him up. I think we had all just finished praying and crying when we took this picture.

They took him in around noon and his actual surgery began around 1:30 pm. We sat in the waiting room waiting for an update for hours, but heard nothing. Those were the most painful and scary hours of my life. They had a scrolling screen of all the patients in surgery, and doctors would post updates for the family on how things were progressing. Dad's was one of the only names that never got an update posted, and after 3 hours we really started to worry. You can only imagine how many prayers God had to handle coming from us during that time! We finally got a call from the OR stating that they were still working and things were "progressing on schedule." Not very comforting, but at least we heard something. We finally got word around 6:15 pm that he was out and heading to recovery. I have never been so relieved in my life. We finally spoke face to face with his actual surgeon after 7pm who told us they did a quadruple bypass, and had to take veins out of both of his legs. He said things went well, and his heart was strong and he did not have to be put on the heart/lung machine, they kept his beating the whole time. He also didn't have to have any blood transfusions, which was good. They allowed us to visit him in the recovery room in the ICU after that. He was still under, and had a breathing tube. He was so still and quiet and it was scary to see him that way. I offered to spend the night with him, and stayed by his side all night. I was the first person he got to see when he came to, and I was so glad I got to be there! They finally got his breathing tube out the next morning and we got to talk a bit. He was the same old guy I always knew, joking with the nurses and very thankful to be alive. We all took turns visiting him and I spent the next night with him too. The staff took good care of him and he is progressing very well at this time. He finally got moved to a regular room last night and has most of the IV's, etc out so he can walk and move around. This is one of the most intensive and painful surgeries to experience and recover from, and I hate seeing my strong dad in so much pain. He is handling it well, not complaining any, and already looking forward to being able to hunt and play golf again in a few months! I think he will be in the hospital until right before Thanksgiving and then get to go home Wednesday. We plan to head back in the next few weeks to check on him. I cannot even begin to express the gratitude for all those who have prayed for dad and the family. I know God heard each and every one of you and was holding my sweet dad in his hands the entire time. Please continue to pray constantly as he still has a long and hard recovery ahead of him. We have so much to be thankful for this year!
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Sunday, November 14, 2010

Making Decisions

I have felt great after running the half marathon and my legs still seem to be working well too, thank goodness! I actually have a sinus infection that I have had all week, but running wise I feel great. I rested completely until Wednesday and then did an easy 4 mile run after church. By Tuesday I was itching to get back out there and run, but thought I should take it easy since my head wasn't feeling well. Wednesday's run was great, but my head has gotten worse everyday it seems. I have decided it is not going away and finally got an antibiotic to help get rid of it. Hope it works fast, I have been fairly miserable this week.

I found a new running group in town to start doing my long runs with...a fabulous little group called the Sole Sisters! Lots of women different ages and pace ranges that run together and race together. I headed out early Saturday morning to meet the group and do my first long run with them. It was great! I ended up running 9 miles and got to know several of the ladies along the way. I would have liked to have done more, but I couldn't breathe out of my nose due to this yucky infection, it started spitting cold rain and was really windy, I didn't have any water with me, and I only had one GU pack. With all those factors against me, I ran what I could and will hopefully be more prepared to go farther with them next time. My Christmas list continues to grow longer and longer with all of the fun running gear and accessories I realize I need to be a long distance runner:)

I haven't actually registered yet, but I am leaning heavily towards running the Little Rock Marathon in March 2011. I really want to do it, but have heard some fairly intimidating things about some nasty LONG and HARD hills in the second half. As if running 26.2 miles wasn't hard enough on its own, lets just add some crazy hills to the mix! I need to make up my mind soon though. I am basically training as though I will run it, unless I find another one close by that is around the same date. I am hoping this winter is not as hard as last, so that there won't be too many runs in the snow for me! I am so not a winter person, so this should be interesting for sure with the training outdoors and all.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Missing Pictures

Not sure what happened, hope these pictures post!

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13.1 Miles.....Done!!

I ran a half marathon this morning!! 13.1 miles of non-stop running is a lot of work. I'm TIRED:) It was a fabulous experience and I loved every second of it. This is such a great race distance and I am hoping there are a lot more in my future! Silas did great watching the kids for several hours and managed to get some pictures of me coming into the stadium for the finish, which was awesome.
I managed to get to bed about 10 pm the night before and got a good night's sleep. I was up a little after 5 am so I could eat some breakfast and get moving a bit before we had to hop into the car. We got the boys up at 5:30 am and headed out right before 6. It was about an hour drive and we made it there a little before 7am. It was still pitch black and felt sooo early. It was also about 32 degrees!! I got my race packet, put my number and timing chip on, and tried to calm my nerves while I waited for my running partner, Amy.
Before I knew it it was time to head to the starting line! The race is a very small local one run in Wynne, AR. It included a full and half marathon, and I believe there were somewhere between 450-550 runners total. I calmed down a lot at the starting line and was ready to go. The gun went off and there we went, starting out at a nice comfortable pace as planned. I thought we would go pretty fast the first mile and then settle into our groove, so I tried to be intentional about not taking off too fast. Somehow though I missed the first mile marker, so I have no clue how fast it was! After about 12 minutes we figured we had passed it a while back and just kept plugging along. There was a pretty big hill right after mile 1 and then miles 2-5 were flat. We planned to have a GU at mile 4, but missed the water station so we took it about mile 4 1/2 and got water at mile 5. The sun was shining, there was not a cloud in the sky, and we warmed up pretty fast. It was a gorgeous day to run and we just talked and enjoyed ourselves. It was an out and back course and the turn- around was close to mile 6.5. The race clock read 1:03 something as we made the turn and headed back. We had been pacing right under 10 minute miles consistently to this point, which was right where I wanted to be.
Miles 6-9 flew by and we took another GU somewhere around 9. I started getting a little antsy at this point because I knew once we hit mile 10 we had never run that far before. The fun part was that there were mile markers for both the half and the full marathons along the course, so we kept seeing mile 22, 24, etc. I tried to imagine how I would be feeling if I really had run 24 miles at that point! Mile 10 came and went and we were now in uncharted running territory. I never really hit a wall, but mile 11 was a little tough. Not close enough to be almost finished, but far enough to be tired of running!! And then between miles 11 and 12 we had to re-visit that lovely hill that we chugged up at the beginning of the race. Not fun, but not too bad either. We were still going strong at this point and hadn't lost any time off our pace. I was starting to see lots of people slow down and some started walking, but we just kept pushing along like usual. I sure enjoyed the long downhill and was so excited to hit mile 12, be back in town, and hear people cheering you on towards the finish. We hit mile 12 right under 2 hours and starting really pushing the pace at this point. We were running faster and faster while everyone slowed down. We managed to pass a lot of people at this point, which was nice! We started talking about how we were so proud of what we had done and how excited we were to have accomplished this together. I started getting a little choked up and emotional at that point from all the being proud of us, so I had to quit talking so I could breathe and run!! We ran like the wind but that last mile took forever. Finally we hit the final turn and came into the football stadium for the finish on the school track. I was so happy!! I caught sight of Silas and the boys and just smiled and waved. At this point I was running as hard as I could. I always have to finish strong! I crossed the finish line at 2:08:47!! Best feeling ever:) I think we did that last 1.1 miles in about 9 minutes which was crazy! My secret personal goal was to finish between 2:10 and 2:15, with a strong hope that I could push it in under 2:10 if things went well. And I did it! Average pace for the race ended up being 9:50 miles. Pretty pleased there since we have been training at about a 10:20 to 10:45 pace.

It was a great race and I feel awesome about it. I accomplished all of my personal goals. I finished (not in an ambulance!), I had enough fun to want run another one, and I finished a little under the time I wanted to!! It was a perfect day and there is nothing I would change about any of it:) I wonder what I am going to tackle next?!?!?!!!

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Freezing 10

So I ran 10 miles this past Saturday morning at 8 am. It was 30 degrees when I walked out the door to start! BRRRRRR!! I have been running most days or evenings in shorts or occasionally a long sleeve t-shirt, so I wasn't even sure how to dress for cold weather. I decided on my capri pants, long sleeve t-shirt, vest, and headband for my ears. The outfit worked out perfectly. I had to shed the vest at mile 6 I believe, but everything else worked great. I am thinking I will wear something similar this coming weekend for the race since the starting time temps should be close to 30 degrees again. Mercy that is a change, but I have to say, once you have warmed up for 15 or 20 minutes and it hits about 40 degrees, it feels just perfect:) I do need to buy some cheap gloves I can throw away this week to wear to keep my hands warm too. I also wore my spibelt for the first time and I loved it!! I carried my Gu packs and inhaler in it, and it was so comfortable I even forgot it was there:)

So I took this picture above after I finished running and had a shower:) That is to prove that 10 miles wasn't so bad after all! I drank some chocolate milk for recovery afterwards, stretched a little, and had a good lunch. I think we fueled just about right during the run too. I had a Gu before we started, and again at mile 4. I could tell by miles 8-10 that I needed another one, but hadn't packed any more. I plan to take them at miles 4 and 8 for the race, which should be great. We maintained a steady pace pretty close to 10:30 miles which is right on track for us. Can I just say that I felt AMAZING after I finished running! What a huge accomplishment for sure. I have never been the fastest person, but I have also never been a distance person either, so this is huge:)

So I am freaking out a little that my race is in 4 days!! That means we are tapering down this week to shorter runs, which seems weird. Last night we ran 4 miles and it seemed so fast. The awful part is that I stepped in a crack on the road and rolled my ankle. I finished the run just fine, but all day today my bad knee (on the same leg) has been throbbing, and I am really hoping it is unrelated. I think it is most likely due the the rain front we having moving through tonight, but it has me all worried that I have hurt something. I am praying to run easy tomorrow night and get some good rest before Saturday. I have been sleeping great and getting to bed early so far this week, so I am feeling good. I am really excited at this point and ready to run! I have been thinking about some goals for the race and I think they are pretty simple. 1) Cross the finish line (not in an ambulance!) and 2) Have fun. I have a time I would like to finish under but I know that first races are just for finishing, and I can worry about times for future half marathons!! I am hoping to enjoy this one enough to want to do some more!
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