"...In the end, people either have excuses or experiences; reasons or results; buts or
brilliance. They either have what they wanted or they have a detailed list of all the rational reasons why not."

~ Anonymous
(taken from Matt Erbele's, It Takes Time to Get Good)

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Walking in a Winter Wonderland!

Of course, your definition of a 'winter wonderland' and mine may be a little different.

Winter in Maui, Hawaii

I had grand plans of posting a 'Farewell! I am off to Hawaii!' post, but I got sidetracked by .. well more on that later, as you read what could also be titled List of Additional Shit that makes 2010 Suck Ass. 

Here are the pictures, I was going to use

Walrus Girl Does Hawaii! (Ok, possibly only funny to SQ. Alright, maybe not even to him, but cute, no?)  

Mr. and Mrs. RBR at the airport!

But since I am already back from Hawaii, it seems that whole We-are-off-to-Hawaii-Try-to-not-freeze-your-tuckus-off-while-you-choke-on-your-jealousy,-bitches! ship has sailed.

So, without further adieu...

Hawaii 2010

Back at the beginning of the school year, I decided that we would celebrate the end of my husband's cancer treatment by going to Hawaii for Christmas. Then I convinced my family that we are all grown adults that do not need anything and we should just skip presents this year since we would all be out of town.

Let's just say, sometimes...

I am fucking BRILLIANT. 

Zero stress Christmas? Check. 


2010 continues its campaign for the "Most Suck Ass Year to Beat All Suck Ass Years," so the transition to vacation was not as seamless I would have liked.

It started in November when a granola cluster, that apparently featured Titanium chips, broke my tooth. (Like how I blame the inanimate object and not my hillbilly dental constitution? Whatevs. That thing was ridiculous) Upon seeing the dentist, the following transpired:

Evil, money grubbing Dentist who is, in reality, neither evil, nor money grubbing: Ummm... wow, that is a bad break. You need a root canal, gum surgery since it broke below the gum line, and then a special cap. And, gee, this tooth behind it is chipped as well and the filling looks involved, so it may need work too. Oh, and by the way, *sadistic dentist smile* you have reached your insurance cap for the year, so it will have to all be out of pocket. (Translation for you non-dentists: "Whoa! That is one jacked up tooth. But don't worry, this is not only going to hurt like a mofo, it is going to cost you enough to put my kid through her first year at Stanford")

Me thinks to myself in true hillbilly style: Fuck that. It does not hurt now. I am waiting until 2011 when my insurance resets to fix this bitch.

Me says: Thank you, doctor. I will check my schedule and give you a call to set up the appointment (translation for you non-hillbilly types: See ya next year, sucka!)

[eerie foreshadowing music plays]

Fast forward to December 17 (THREE fucking days before departure on our very needed and very expensive Hawaiian holiday getaway) the tooth starts to hurt. A LOT.


I hear flying in a airplane is a GREAT idea when you have a toothache. I just said "fuck it", and got a prescription for pain medication and proceeded as planned.

Random picture from Hawaii to break up text block. Plumeria flowers.  

At the end of November my parents returned from their 3 week vacation in Antarctica. (I know! Right? They had an amazing trip. I hope to have a picture or two to share when my dad finishes them.) On the return flight my mother developed  a pulmonary embolism (blood clot to her lungs) and had to be hospitalized. The doctor told us that she "dodged a bullet" and if the clot had not scattered when it left the heart and went to the lungs it would have most likely killed her instantly or caused massive lung damage. It was pretty fucking terrifying. She is doing very well now, but her long distance flying days are over.


With mom at home and out of danger and  fistful of painkillers I head off to Hawaii with hubby. 

Christmas at the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua...

...with this sexy creature. 

Hard to bemoan your lot in life when you are in Maui at Christmas with the man you love. The vacation was exactly what I needed: laid back, relaxed, and beautiful. I even had the peace of mind to read. I have not been able to finish a book in the last 8 months. I have started several, but have only finished one I think.

Running in Hawaii

Things I learned running in Hawaii

1. I am out of shape

2. Hawaii is humid.

3. Asthma, and by extension the asthmatic RBR, does not like humidity. 

4. It does not matter where I go I end up running uphill.

5. Running while out of shape, in humidity, with asthma, and uphill sucks ass.  

6. Running while on vacation in Hawaii makes you not care about 1-5.

Top of the hill, well one of them, but it is all good, brah (Yes, I am entirely too white to say "brah." My apologies to the Hawaiian people)

Scenes from my Hawaiian Running

 Leaving the hotel. This is at the Bayan tree at the entrance to the hotel.

Yellow Hibiscus (the state flower of Hawaii) planted along the golf course.

Tunnel that lets you run under the Piilani Hwy. 

Lush greenery along trail.

View from the near the top of the trail. It is ok to hate me now *smug grin*

GIGANTO African Snail (there were TONS of this invasive, introduced species. I will spare you the lecture about island ecosystems and introduced species)

 Monarch butterflies gettin' down and dirty on the trail. No shame, those Monarchs. It was Monarch breeding season in Kapalua.

The product of the lepidopteran exhibitionists (Again, only funny to SQ and other science nerds)

This may be the last picture of me and my favorite pink run hat. To add to the wonder that has been my 2010, United airlines lost my luggage on our return trip. My run hat, water belt, sunglasses, favorite run shorts, and cute new run tops were all inside. *sigh*

You did it 2010! You won the "Most Suck Ass Year to Beat All Suck Ass Years"! Congratulations!

*sniff* I will miss you pink Puma run hat. 

And lest you think I forgot you, G

Aloha (RBR style) from Hawaii!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Race Report: Summit RockTrail 10k - December 11, 2010

As many of you know, a cute logo is often all it takes to get me to sign up for a race.

This little bugger was actually cute enough to get me up early on Saturday morning when I would have rather hid under the covers all day.

I do love that his round little face is trying to be all bad ass. (WAY over exposed picture of the back of the t-shirt.)

I really like Brazen races. They are well supported, well organized, and in beautiful locations. They have a very hometown race feel, with all the frills of a bigger race. Plus on the girly side, they usually have cute logos and nice t-shirts that are available in tech fabric and women specific fit.

Front of shirt and the finisher's medal.

I am pretty over the men's, size medium white, cotton race t-shirts that make me look like an asexual box (shut up, G).

"Oh, but RBR, you can make a super cool race t-shirt quilt," you may exclaim! I have enough shirts to make like 12 "super cool" quilts, and let's be serious, I barely have the wherewithal to fold my laundry on the weekend much less sew a goddamn quilt. Soooo... yeah, I will pass on the white cotton race tee.

"Super cool" race shirt quilt. I know one Type A personality with too much time on her hands.


A picture that captures my status for the past couple of weeks:

Me, all rhinoceros like, wallowing in my own muck.

Upside: Wallowing is very restful and my hip is feeling MUCH better, so I was a 'go' to run the Summit 10k this weekend.

Downside: My mood was piss poor from the moment I woke up Saturday morning.


I was thrilled to learn that Ron and Katie were doing the run, but was also surprised and excited to find that Ann (trail turtle) was also in town and running today!

Ann, Ron, Katie, Moi.
Sheesh. I am thinking Jenny Craig will not be calling me anytime soon to be their next spokesmodel. Whatevs.

I registered for the 10k in my new "RBR is only going to do reasonable distances that she is actually trained for" resolution. Sadly the maiden voyage of this resolution was a bit of a miss, since I have only been doing runs from 0 -3 miles in length on the treadmill for the last month and a half and this was a 6.5 mile trail run with 1889 ft of climb.

Oopsies. Old habits die hard, I guess.

Elevation profile (grumble...Bimactive.com sold out to Adidas and now they do not accept gps data anymore. *Unhappy RBR face*)

Dirty Details:

Total Distance:
6.67 miles
Total climb: 1889 ft
Total time: 1:44:21

Ann was doing the 10k as well, so we decided to run together. Ron and Katie were doing the half marathon and I must admit there was a twinge of jealousy that they were doing the longer distance while I did the 10k. That lasted until about half a mile into the initial 3.25 mile climb, then I was pretty fucking glad to not be doing the half marathon and was wondering what the hell my aversion to the 5k distance was.

Yes, we are walking. It was more of a 3.25 mile hike, followed by a 3.25 mile run.

Ann claims to read my blog, but before the race she kept telling me that if I wanted to go faster I did not have to wait for her. Yeah, that is how my race reports ALWAYS play out, with ol' RBR leaving people in the dust, so I have my doubts about her actually reading it. Needless to say, despite the fact that she was having some hip issues I huffed and puffed behind her trying to keep up.

Ann waiting on Huff n' Puff the 'out-of-shape' Dragon behind her. Notice she is nicer about it than Ron was at the Tarantula 1/2. I am just saying.

The course was gorgeous. The fog made for perfect running conditions that were neither too hot nor too cold. I had run out here once before and it was as beautiful and hard as I remembered. The ascent was brutal, but the downhill was much better than I thought it would be and we were able to run the entire thing. At 41, I spend a lot of time and money trying to defy gravity, but gravity CAN be your friend when you are ass endowed and running downhill.

Obligatory race dog photo #1. Super cute french bulldog.

Obligatory race dog photo #2. For the record, that wadded up thing was a dog bed and was intact when we started the race. By the time we left it looked like it had snowed.

At the end, I was very glad I decided to come out and run despite my horrid mood leading up to Saturday. Plus deciding to do the 10k and not the half marathon had its benefits:

1. At Brazen races they have 'It's It' ice cream sandwiches at the finish line. Now, since I usually do the longest distance they offer and am usually the slowest runner there, I am never done when there are sandwiches left, but not today, baby!

Ann with RBR and her 'Hey-I-am-not-last!' It's It. Cappuccino flavored. I mean, come on! Does it get better than that?

2. There was food left. Lots of food left. Including pie!

Yes, I had pie AND ice cream after running only 6.5 miles. Jenny Craig is not going so well, as you can imagine.

Judging from how Ron and Katie looked coming in, I could possibly still be out there trying to finish, if was doing the half marathon course.

4. I got to wait for Ron and Katie to come in. (That NEVER happens. They are always waiting on me)

And when they did come in I looked rested, and smug, and chock full of ice cream, pie and smugness. Did I mention the smugness?

They were a wee bit tired from the half marathon course, which did not get better after the 10k turn around from what I hear. I wouldn't know I was eating free ice cream.

Love you, man.

MANY thanks to Ann who helped me turn my mood around and have a really great run on Saturday.

You guys rock! Thank you all so much.

Next up Katie and I will be doing the 11 miler at Crystal Springs on January 8th. Ron didn't really think he could steal my girl without a fight, did he?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Ahhhh, Winter!

Stupid, fucking Winter.

Or as I like to call it, The Season of Snot.

Some of you are gasping at the statement, saying "How could you hate the season that brings crisp, clean air, quiet snow covered mornings, and inspires friends and family to gather around a roaring fire and reflect on the beauty of it all?"

It is pretty easy, really.

It is cold, dark, wet, miserable, and I am horridly allergic to winter and all of its climate controlled, indoor living.

For example, if you invite me over for a roaring fire in your home, better make sure the plastic slip covers are in place. I am second only to Saint Bernards in the ability to cover everything as far as the eye can see in a fine patina of mucus.

Yes, SQ, this is an English Bulldog, but its funny so I used it anyway.

Reasons I hate winter:

1. I spend the winter with a resting heart rate of 125 bpm from all the decongestants I have to take to be able to breathe out of, at most, one nostril at any given time.

2. I am constantly asked "Are you sick?" If I answer "No, I have allergies," I get the 'you are full of shit' look because everyone assumes allergies are a spring time gig. So I usually answer, "Yes, I have Dengue Fever, but the doctor says I am most likely not contagious anymore." (I substitute the Flu du jour if there is one in the news to induce extra fast fleeing from me. Aside: Hubby sent me that link. Hilarious.)

3. I sleep with Kleenex stuffed up at least one nostril to keep from drowning in the pool of my own snot created by an unobstructed 'down' nostril when I lay on my side.

4. It is cold. [insert eyerolls from East Coast persons]

I live in and love California. Therefore, by definition, I hate weather. Specifically weather that strays outside of the '75 degrees and 0% humidity' zone. Here in California, we avoid weather at all costs, trying to maintain as close to an endotherm level of homeostasis as possible. A couple of degrees + or -, fine. Go beyond that and we start pissing and moaning and stamping our little crunchy granola, hippy feet.

Yesterday it was 36 degrees at 8:30 in the morning. The sun was up for Christ's sake!

*stamps little crunchy granola, hippy foot*

I emailed a friend to bemoan the fact that I had to wear a coat to work. He essentially told me to stop being such a pissy, little bitch.

Umm.... dude, it was not a sweatshirt or fleece, it was an actual COAT!

Ok, I will stop.

5. It gets dark at like 2:30 in the afternoon. (ok, that is a slight exaggeration, but it sure feels that way.)

6. I think my feelings for winter can be summed up by the simple chemical reaction:

RBR + Cold + 2Dark + 5Allergies -----------------> 3Lack of exercise + 4Ass size increase + 3Moody Bitch

I almost can not believe how perfect this picture is, only reconfirming my belief that Google images is powered by God.


The hip is improving and I have set my sights on a few runs: (I am over calling them "races". I am very frequently last. If I am 'racing' I supremely suck at it. )

December 11: Summit Rock 10k (chosen for its uber cute, if not geographically correct, Eagle logo)

January 8: Crystal Springs 11 mile (chosen because Woodside is beautiful and Coastal trail runs have cute t-shirts)

January 29: Coyote Hills 1/2 marathon (chosen because Jo Lynn is doing it and she is adorable!)

February: TBD

March 12: If I get in, Way too Cool 50k (chosen due to beautiful trail and AWESOME frog logo. There is a lottery, so kind of a long shot)