New Season, New Rules

By | fall, half marathon training 2017, lists, running | No Comments

Confession: I’ve been moping around for the last few weeks feeling terrible about myself for not being able to run the Rock’n’Roll Half Marathon the other day. After my clumsy fall in early May, it took me months to be able to run again. I took more time off from running than I have in probably the last 13 years, and I’m just now starting to work back up to four runs per week — enough to pick up where I left off on the training plan I made before I got hurt.

When I say “moping”, I mean teetering on the edge of slipping into a spiral of depression. For the last few weeks, I’ve hardly wanted to do anything except work, go for an occasional jog, and lay in my bed. I didn’t really know what was wrong with me — only that I was sad and feeling like a complete failure at life. I thought maybe I was just extra upset that summer was ending or burned out from working so much lately.

When I woke up yesterday morning with the Epic Half Marathon Fail of 2017 behind me, I felt like a completely different person. While I was doing some yoga, it occurred to me that I felt sort of…motivated again. I counted the weeks in my head to the Wicked 10K and decided to put together another training plan. Last night, I put that plan into a calendar in my Evernote. I got up early this morning to run for 30 minutes before work. Barring any weird issues with my knee (it’s still bothering me here and there), I’ll run again on Thursday and be back on track.

Additionally, I need to get my life together after acting like a depressed person for the last few weeks. So I’m setting some rules for September.

Rule #1: No running if my knee hurts. Even though I want to run another half marathon, I don’t want to injure myself in the process. I’m going to set shorter-term goals this time, and not get frustrated if I have to veer off my plan to recover.

Rule #2: No posting the plan on the Internet. That way I’ll feel less like I’m failing if I have to adjust it as I go. 🙂

Rule #3: No shopping. I already added a few new items to my wardrobe for fall, and I don’t need anymore. If I actually go running, I’ll probably lose a few pounds, and if I lose a few pounds, there is a whole section of clothes in my closet that will fit me again.

Rule #5: If I have to skip a run, substitute biking or swimming instead. Even if that means buying one of these weird looking swim caps, so my hair doesn’t turn green.

Happy Monday Tuesday. 😉 I hope all your kids had an awesome first day of school!

Come Monday

By | jimmy buffett is my hero, memories, music, summer, videos, virginia beach | One Comment

You didn’t think I’d let the long weekend end without posting an end-of-summer music video, did you? (I’ve probably done this enough times now to make an entire playlist…)

For the record, I think this video is weird. Scroll down and look at some pictures instead. 😉

Some of my favorite memories from this summer:

Hanging out with my brother. Especially the time we managed to fit in kayaking, paddle boarding, and surfing all in one weekend. And the time we spent the afternoon moving his stuff off his ship.

Blackbeard’s Revenge scavenger hunt w/coworkers from 1701.

Tina’s (kind of) annual crab feast.

Hanging w/my parents @ the Jimmy Buffett concert.

Painting the picnic tables @ 1701.

Sunrise bike rides.

Relaxing on the porch. With the dog. And delicious coffee.

Driving out to the beach to snap photos of a lightning storm.

Beach days for days. Especially the ones with all of these super cool neighbors, like Labor Day and the 4th of July.

Riding my bike to go see Wonder Woman in the air conditioned theater on a super hot day.

Celebrating 1701’s first birthday!

Winning this Inside Business Entrepreneurial Excellence Award.

My solo, 29-hour vacation, where I spent the night in Charlottesville and the following day in Shenandoah National Park. Especially my hike down to a waterfall. 🙂

The weekend Nicole came to visit, which ended with this hilarious dolphin-watching cruise and a trip to Big Sam’s for clam strips…even though they were all out of clam strips. 🙂

Long, productive work days at 1701…and on the beach.

Breezy evenings by the ocean at sunset. I’ll never get enough of those.

Rainy Day Data

By | at the office, being a computer genius, cool things i found on the internet, employment, how did i just realize this?, salesforce, you might learn something | No Comments

I was supposed to go to New Jersey this weekend. Had my bags packed and everything. But then my car kept acting up, and the weather forecast looked pretty unfortunate, so when my alarm went off at 5:30 yesterday morning, I made the groggy decision to just sleep for two more hours and go to work instead of drive up there.

I’m glad I did work yesterday because I had a call with a prospective new client at 9:30, signed a contract to do some work for them at 10am, and was finished with the entire project and ready to invoice it by the end of the day. It was kind of a Salesforce project, but it was mostly a data cleansing and augmentation project. I find myself working on a lot of those lately.

I think I always had an affinity for data. It started out as an obsession with grammar and categorizing things into lists in my journals and diaries when I was younger. It evolved into immaculate file-naming conventions in college and impeccable folder structures, which were admired by everyone in my office at my first “real job.” It’s the reason I created such silly categories (then tags) for this blog. When TranSystems implemented a CRM system, I became vigilant about always using the system as the source of truth. And when my last company decided to overhaul their internal communication and multiple applications with Salesforce,  integrating it with their back-end system, I volunteered to lead the project because I couldn’t imagine anyone being able to get a handle on that company’s data (and processes) better than I could.

I never really knew the proper way to clean up a massive amount of data. Every time I’ve done it (until yesterday), I’ve done it in Excel, Google Sheets and/or Smartsheet, but I’ve always known that wasn’t the “right” way to do it. Last time a client asked me to take the lead on a big data migration, I chickened out and deferred to another consultant because I wasn’t confident enough in my strategy for doing it. That other consultant screwed it up royally, and I felt terrible for making that recommendation, which is why I did commit to helping them clean it all up.

It’s also why I spent this rainy day at work mastering my new favorite free thing I found on the Internet: OpenRefine. I cleaned up about a half a million pieces of data in three hours today. It sounds super nerdy, but I was pretty excited about it. 🙂

Speaking of work, today marks one year of me not having a “real job” anymore. And while that means I work excessively and haven’t had a real paycheck in 365 days…it also means I’ve spent an entire year not wasting a single minute wondering what I could be doing instead of my job. And that feels pretty amazing. 🙂

I’ve learned a lot about time, money, success, happiness, and work over the last year. Maybe I’ll write about that next.

Why I’m Taking an Extended Break From 1/2 Marathon Training

By | fathom coffee, half marathon training 2017, hazards to my well-being, running | No Comments

I know, I know. I was doing so well. And then I stopped, and I never even told anyone why.

I went for run #6 (which I never blogged about because it was an utter pathetic excuse for a run) and realized I couldn’t straighten my knee all the way. I was having trouble even walking, let alone running. So I limped home, put some ice on my knee, and decided to take a break. A week later, no progress. So I went to Atlantic Orthopedic Specialists (who have evening hours from 4pm-9pm on weeknights – brilliant!), and after a few x-rays and telling my then-three-week-old tale about falling during run #4, I was diagnosed with a “really bad bone bruise” and  inflammation irritating all of the cartilage behind knee.

“You can run again when it stops hurting,” the doctor said. “And if it hurts again after you run, don’t run again until after it stops hurting again.”

“How long do you think it will take to stop hurting?” I asked.

“Could be one to six weeks from now,” he said.

Oops. 🙁

So, it’s been about three weeks since my doctor visit. A little over five weeks since I fell. My knee feels much better, but definitely not normal yet.

Hopefully I can get back out there soon.

In the meantime, I won an award. So that’s pretty awesome and makes me feel a little better. 🙂

My sponsor, Fathom Coffee, is now sponsoring my recovery. I am only using frozen coffee cubes to ice my knee. (I am kidding. That would be a complete waste of coffee. I’m just drinking cold brew while I ice my knee.)

R&R 1/2 Marathon 2017 Training Run #5

By | fathom coffee, half marathon training 2017, running | No Comments

 30:00

2.18 miles

13.44 min/mi

 Take it easy.

 Aléa – Jumo

I made up what was supposed to be yesterday’s run this morning. Gave my bruised, banged-up knees an extra day to recover from Sunday’s tripping incident. Then I took it slow and walked a little here and there. I think I’m past the Band-Aid stage, so hopefully tomorrow will be a little better.

Want to cheer me on while I train for this half marathon? Help me grow one of my businesses by trying some Fathom Coffee! We posted some new coffees this week, complete with scenic photos taken on the Virginia Beach Fishing Pier. Use code RUNLISA for 13.1% off your first order.