/> SLO in Arkansas: February 2011

Monday, February 28, 2011

Race Week

And I am freaking out just a bit! I really am trying to be calm about this, but nerves are getting me right now. I feel like I am nesting the way I am cleaning my house today too....apparently it helps me get rid of some of the nervous energy to scrub things! Anyway, the plan for this week is to survive mainly. Somehow life has decided to throw a freakishly busy schedule at me this week work wise, and I have more hours scheduled to work than I have since Jace was born! Yikes. We are also having some crazy weather so I have no clue what race day will look like. I have been training in 30-40 degree temps mostly and yesterday it was in the 70's and very humid. We have been having major thunderstorms and lots of wind. Plus we had an earthquake last night! I have no idea what outfit I will go with so lots of things are still up in the air.

My plan for this week is to take it one day at a time. I am also trying to drink a lot more water than usual to stay good and hydrated, but that isn't so easy for me to remember. My goal is to get in bed every night by 10pm, but we will see what happens with my crazy work week and all. I am really hoping to not get to the weekend frazzled and exhausted, but that may be the case. Nothing a little 26 mile run can't work out though:)

Race Goals:
1) Finish (and not in an ambulance)
2) Finish in 5 hours or less
3) Finish in a rock the socks off time which I will keep to myself until after the race!

I am so stinking competitive, even with myself, that it is hard for me to not set big goals for myself. I am fully aware that a first marathon is just for finishing. period. But I don't know how to not push myself. I have been doing a terrible job of doing "easy" runs here the past few weeks too. My goal race pace for this race is around 10:45 miles, and very rarely do I ever run that slow! The weather will be a major factor for me though. I am just not used to the heat and humidity yet, so if its hot or raining, there goes the plan. I ran a very hilly 3.25 miles yesterday and killed it. I own those hills! They sure take a lot out of you though. The weather changes are keeping my knee aching (my bad knee from surgery) which I don't like, but other than that I feel pretty good physically. Mentally I am all over the place, but I am working on that! I am SO ready for this thing to be over with. Counting the days until I can sigh a big sigh of relief:)

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Marathon Prep

I run a marathon in 11 days. I got my email confirmation today which is my official way to pick up my race packet at the Expo before the race. This is getting real y'all! I am excited, jittery, and ready to run. I know that I have trained for this physically and that I am capable of running the distance. I hear a lot of things about people going in mentally unprepared though, and being defeated in their minds during the race. I have been trying to come up with ways to do some mental preparation, but I have come to realize I already do a lot of what people suggest. I have been an athlete my entire life and competed in many events. I know how to make my mind tough. I already do it on all my long runs anyway, I just never really thought about what I was doing.

Lots of people suggest having a mantra to repeat when you feel bad to help give you a boost. Luckily I already have several that I use, so I don't even have to come up with one! The last few long runs I have had to keep telling myself "Trust your training, trust your body, trust your running." This helps me in the last few miles when I am increasing my mileage and nagging thoughts of doubt try to tell me I can't go any further. I also tell myself "Run harder, run stronger, run faster." That is just a good one for anytime during a run:) Every time I run up a hill, whether long or just short and steep I tell myself this is "money in the bank." I got that one from Silas. Even when the hills get tough I push hard up them and picture myself passing all the people who have slowed down or are walking the hills. I sure hope this works!! The last one I got from my younger sister and have loved! I just sing it to myself over and over in the middle of the run or whenever I take my ipod off and have time for more thinking. It's a little diddy that goes "Ain't nothin' gonna break my stride. Ain't nothin' gonna slow me down, oh no, I've got to keep on movin!" I always grin when I sing this to myself, and try to make it more fun by singing it with lots of attitude:) I also try to smile to keep myself relaxed when I am running. And to remind myself to have fun.

So there you have it. My little running mantras that get me where I am going. I get a little anxious about the race at times, but for the most part I have been SO busy the past few weeks that I don't have a lot of time to stress about it! I will take that as a good thing. I ran without my Garmin this week too. Since I am cutting back to 4 mile runs during the week, I just want to relax and run easy. I don't care about my pace or where the miles are. I know the route well and just want to enjoy the run. Hopefully this will help keep me relaxed through next week!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Surprise Party!

We headed to Nashville Saturday morning (after I squeezed in a 10 mile run) to go celebrate my Dad's 60th birthday. My sister's and I had been planning it since before Christmas, and we were excited to finally get to the party:) Dad's birthday isn't until the very end of the month, so he wasn't expecting anything. We all drove in from out of town and met for dinner at Stoney River. Luckily my sister had the foresight to reserve us a private room, which worked out perfectly to keep the 6 little kids contained in one spot! The look on my dad's face was priceless and worth the drive. He was speechless when they opened the doors and he saw his whole family standing there cheering for him. We had a wonderful steak dinner, the kids ran and played with their cousins, and we gave Dad his gift....a book of love letters we had all written for him. It was perfect!
We headed back to Mom and Dad's house for the after party. We had brownies and ice cream, finally exchanged Christmas presents with one another, and talked the night away. Renee brought her Mark Kay stuff and gave Caroline and I make-overs. It was awesome! I love spending time with my sisters and I miss them so much.
The Hensley girls!
The boys had an absolute ball playing with their cousins, grandparents and aunts and uncles. It was a zoo with everyone running around, but all the kids did great. Poor mom and dad's house didn't fair so well with 6 kids under the age of 4 running around though....we were only there about 14 hours (including sleeping) and we had a long list of broken items when we left!! Luckily super glue saved the day and most of the items:) The little boys traveled great too. It was probably the best trip home I have ever had! It was so wonderful to be together and share in the fun of celebrating the heart and soul of our family. I love you Dad!! Happy Birthday:)
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

My Mess

Jace loves to eat. He also loves to play with his food. He had an exceptionally fun time at dinner tonight!
Something is seriously wrong with my camera or something when I upload my pictures to the computer! Sorry for the weird stuff going on here.
He was so proud of himself. He was squishing handfuls of spaghetti in his hands and just looked at me and said sweetly, "Mess!" I love my boys:)
Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

20 Miler

Just a random picture of Jace with his crazy hair after his bath. I thought it was cute:)
And my victory celebration picture after completing my first 20 mile run! The run went great. The weather was sunny and high 30's to low 40's. I listened to my music the first 12 miles and turned it off the last 8. I can't have my ipod during the race, so I have to practice gutting it out at the end with no beat:) No one could run with me so I did the whole 20 alone. I like running alone now, so it was good. The last 2 miles were tough, but I got through them. Still a little freaked out about having 6.2 more to do at the race, but hoping the excitement gets me to the end. That and the fact that I want that big medal! I thought I would be pretty sore but I have felt great since Saturday's run. Mostly just tired:) Monday's run was really really slow, but I guess that is to be expected. The weather is gorgeous, sunny and warm this week, so my mood has greatly improved. Bring on the Spring! Just hoping it doesn't get too hot before the race. I am officially tapering now, and looking forward to the mileage going down for the next few weeks. 20 days til the race!!
Posted by Picasa

Friday, February 11, 2011


I seriously don't know why my pictures never post with the blog! Frustrating!!

Posted by Picasa

Tyson Rhodes-3 1/2 years

Tyson is changing so much lately, and is a little sponge when it comes to learning things. That kid soaks up everything and is so eager to learn new things. I love it! His newest development is spelling and writing. He has been spelling for the past few months, but has just picked up writing here in the last month or so. The spelling all started when he became very interested in traffic laws and signs. We taught him all about the stoplights and what the colors mean, and the signs we see around town. The stop sign became his favorite and he started spelling it out every time we got to one. Now all I hear from the backseat is "S-T-O-P stop, stop, stop!!"
He can spell milk, stop, Tyson, Jace, start, red, go, boy, rock. He knows a lot of other too if we say them first, like mom, dad, baby, wash. Anyway, he is doing great with his spelling and really picking up on the letters. He spells out lots of signs he sees around town, and recognizes when words start with a "T" like his name does. We spell words out with the letters on the fridge, but I think he is an auditory learner and he has a great memory! We do a lot of singing in our house and listen to a lot of music. He knows the words to tons of songs. If we want to teach him a new word to spell, we pretty much just put it to a tune we made up and make up a little song about it, and after that he can usually remember how to spell it. Of course he has to sing the whole song too:)
Since he has become so interested in spelling, his interest in books and reading has taken off too. Thus our new weekly adventure to story time at the library on Wednesday mornings! We hear a few stories, do a craft, play with the other kids, and then check out a bag full of books to bring home and read. He LOVES his books! We have them all read by the first night home and then he picks his favorite which we read lots before next week. Jace loves books too, but Jace tends to destroy books when he loves on them, so he gets to check out board books for now! Of course he has to do everything big brother does, so here he is showing off his new book:)
Tyson has also started working on his writing, which is going well. I wish I could take credit for working with him, but I owe it all to Leapfrog! He has a little Leapfrog game that has a pen and teaches him how to write each letter, and he just sits at the table and practices away on that thing. He will just randomly bring it to me and say "Look mom, I drew an "i". It's awesome! He can write his name (TY) by himself too. He still gets a little confused by uppercase and lowercase letters looking different, but is starting to figure it out. He sees me making lists all the time too, so he is really into having his own piece of paper for his "list." He also loves receipts from the store:) He loves coupons too. I am going to make sure this little guy knows how to make a budget, grocery list, and use coupons by the time he starts kindergarten:)

He is so happy still almost all the time. He spends a lot of time alone playing in his room because it is the only place he is safe from Jace destroying whatever he is playing with. Once Jace figures out how to open doors it will all be over, but he is safe for now:) The boys fight like crazy, but are really starting to play together well too. They are so cute and mischievous, and wreak all sorts of havoc on the house and my sanity, but I love it (most days). I am really wanting to move Jace into Tyson's room so we can turn Jace's room into a playroom, but I am trying to be patient with that. Jace still naps and goes to bed a little earlier than Tyson, so I don't want to move him until their schedules are a little more the same. Plus Tyson loves having his own space. Jace loves the big bed and will do fine I am sure, but he is still sleeping so well in his crib that I hate to mess that up either! I am thinking the big move will be later this spring or summer once Jace gets a little closer to being 2. I can't believe he will be 2 years old this summer! They are growing so much it is crazy.

Monday, February 07, 2011

The Big 4-0 and Peak Week

Yep, I hit the big 40 this weekend. I have lost 40 pounds! Felt good to see that number on the scale. One more pound drops me down to a weight category I haven't seen since senior year of high school and first few years of college:) I am wearing a smaller size pants now than I was back then though, go figure! I continue to fluctuate about 3 pounds or so, but that is just water weight, weather, etc.

We woke up to about 3 inches of snow this morning. It was beautiful, but instantly stressed me out!! This just happens to be week 15 of my marathon training...you know the week....peak mileage week. The lovely week where a 20 mile run waits for me this weekend. And I am scheduled to run more miles than I ever have before. Yeah, that is this week. So snow and ice on the ground kind of freaks me out since I run at night, and don't have a treadmill, or belong to a gym. Remind me next time I think running a marathon sounds like a good idea (if there is a next time!) that spring marathons are awful because of the winter training! Sign me up for a fall one next time please:)
Thankfully I do own one piece of indoor training equipment thanks to my rockstar husband. He bought me a nice bike trainer, so at least on really yucky days I can at least get a little ride in. Sorry about the weirdness of the picture. Either my computer or camera is going downhill and does this funky thing to some pics when they are downloaded. It is really nice to ride inside while watching House Hunters tropical paradise week, or Cupcake wars! Hopefully the cross training helps me with my running. I am really hoping it doesn't have to replace a run this week though. The boys are obsessed with my bike being in the house and cannot keeps their little paws off of it! They run down and start spinning the tires and fighting over who gets to sit on it every time we come downstairs.
We had a laid back Super Bowl this year and just relaxed at home as a fam. Tyson wore his football jersey and had fun eating chips and cheese dip. Jace danced hard core to the half time show music and threw his arms up every time we yelled touchdown! It was a good game and a nice night in.
Poor little JJ is teething and has a bit of a cold like me, so he wasn't the most energetic thing today. Don't let the picture fool you though.....there was plenty of hours of running the halls and climbing up and down stairs before he sat down:) The boys and I snuggled up in the den and had popcorn while watching Toy Story 3. Then we put a blanket on the floor and had lunch in the den, which the boys loved. Thank goodness for a Dustbuster to clean up afterwards!

I am nursing a cold and am all stopped up and sneezy and coughing too. Lovely to be sick since I have to run all those miles this week. I am trying to take every one's advice and just take it one day at a time. That seems to make things a little more manageable this week. I am pretty overwhelmed trying to figure out how to work, take care of kids, and get my runs in, all while not feeling the greatest this week and it snowing every other day. Oh yeah, and my dad is in town tonight for the night. I am super excited to see him, but trying to figure out how to get my 5 miler in tonight while he is here! Here is to hoping my next post is a bit more cheery with good news that I survived the week and rocked my 20 mile run!!
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, February 05, 2011

Little Rock Marathon Medal 2011

Friday, February 04, 2011

Jace Pictures

Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Jace Britton

Jace is 17 months old and a firecracker! This little guy is all boy and full steam ahead, just like his brother. Tyson is my more sensitive child, and Jace, well, Jace is my fiery one:) First off the kid is huge. Last doctor's appointment he weighed in at 28 pounds. He is wearing mostly 18-24 month clothes and 2T. I am hoping he stays in 2T for a while since that is all I have for boy summer clothes! He only weighs 8 pounds less than Tyson does. I am thinking he won't stay the "little" brother for long!
We took the baby gate down a few weeks ago that has been at the top of our stairs. Jace would grab on it and shake with all his might like a caged gorilla, and I was more scared he would push the thing over and go down the stairs with it. It took him about a day to master the stairs, both up and down. One of his favorite games now is to cling to the railing and dangle out over the staircase going down. Good times! Tyson taught him that. This morning I went down to get dressed and like always, told the boys "stay upstairs!" About 30 seconds later I hear some scooting down the stairs and then a precious little voice saying "hello??" Hewwoooooo!" It was so cute! I poked my head around the corner and said, well hello there! Jace just grinned and scooted the rest of the way down to hang out with me.
His other antics include climbing on tables and chairs. I thought Tyson was bad. Jace is always on my dining room and kitchen table these days. As frustrating as it is, the kid does know how to get what he wants, and can be very resourceful when needed!
He is also talking up a storm lately. I have been trying to write his words down but I lost count. I got to 45 or 50, but I know he knows more than that. He speaks a lot more clearly than Tyson does, which helps me understand more. And just like his brother, he gets so angry when he is trying to communicate something and we just don't get it. Thus the fun temper tantrum phase as well. He is just as happy and social as big brother, and I had a mom tell me at the library this morning that he is the most friendly kid in his Mother's Day Out class(her daughter is in his class there), as he always welcomes the other moms and tells everyone good-bye. Apparently he is a sweeter kid when Tyson is not around to fight with!

He eats like a horse too. The kid eats the same portion size as Silas and I some nights for dinner. These boys are bottomless pits. At least Tyson has slowed down a bit for now. Jace is very jealous and possessive of me, which is a weird thing we didn't go through with Tyson really. I have to get Tyson dressed when Jace is still in his high chair, because he will do everything in his power to keep me away from Ty. This morning I was sitting on the floor putting Tyson's shoes and socks on. I was looking down at Tyson's feet and Jace climbed up on the ottoman and flung himself off right into my lap. Since I wasn't looking I didn't see him coming so he flew head first into my head and we both ended up on the floor crying from the flying head butt. He does things like this daily and does whatever he can to disrupt my attention on Tyson. You would think the little guy never got any attention at all, but he demands most of it constantly! I sure hope this phase passes quickly. I guess those are the big things. Lots of talking, lots of physical activity, and lots of fighting between brothers. Have I mentioned how firmly I believe little boys were not created to be inside for weeks and weeks and months?? Thank goodness that little groundhog decided Spring would come early this year!! My caged animals, I mean children, are needing to blow some steam off outside!!