Three Things Thursday

1. Taper madness: I'm pretty sure that I'm driving everyone around me crazy. Including moi. A little over a week left and the questioning myself and my training is kicking in big time. Oh, and - of course - I'm checking the weather reports (yep, several) at least three times a day, and do I now know the course by heart. No kidding. Shoot me a question about the elevation profile at mile 8. I'm probably able to answer it.

2. Running skirt: Guess what the cat dragged in? No, I'm kidding. Dutch customs was kind enough to release one skirt I'd ordered at RunningSkirts.com. I wanted to test drive it before the marathon, so I wasn't too happy to find out that Dutch customs was holding on to it.

Yeah, yeah, crappy photo. I know. Get over it.

They are still holding the Chocofleurs runningskirt hostage, though, so, the whole 'dressing up as a chocolate' plan might not work out after all. As Zoe pointed out on the Silly Girl Running Facebook-page, they are probably prancing around in it. ;) I hope those fleurs make their butts look huge. ;)

3. Spring weather: I'm taking back everything I said about the beautiful spring weather. We're in the middle of Monsoon 2011 - as we speak. What the bleep!

3a. Throwback Thursday: My grandfather and a tiny moi. I still don't master those Carnegie Hall piano skills, by the way. ;)


MIA - What happened to the hood?

They are gone. And there wasn't a lot to begin with. (Well, not gone gone, but just not as 'out there' as they used to be.)

For the male readers: you might want to stop reading this post...a.s.a.p.. Just warning you. Wouldn't want to traumatize you. Or make myself lose whatever dose of atractiveness I have left...

Morgan already discussed this little problemo on her blog a while ago (check out her (hilarious!) post here). Runner's boob loss. Yup (you wish you'd stopped reading now, don't you?). It's about what's in (or under?) the hood. More specifically, about the lack of it - in my case. Even more specifically, I'm what Shakira was singing about when she referred to breasts as 'small and humble'.

Okay...I'm pretty sure that I've just lost half of my followers and all of my male followers... ;) Way to go, Christel. Way to go.

It is a problem, you know! Well...sort of, anyway...

Okay, on a more serious note, since I picked up running a little over a year ago, my fat percentage has dropped significantly (you know the 'thin on the outside, fat on the inside thing' - I guess that applied to me - scary!) and I'm happy with that. But, with the fat percentage dropping, the same happened to my cup size. What the bleep! There is still something in the hood, but 'voluptuous' wouldn't be the word to describe it. Guys talking to your breasts instead of your face? I truly would not know what you mean.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not (really) complaining here. Because, A. I'm not a huge fan of breast implants (unless you're talking breast reconstruction, of course). B. smaller breasts are quite handy when it comes to running. They don't bounce up and down as much as their big sisters do. ;) C. I can sleep comfortably on my belly. Not that I do, but if I ever wanted to, I could. And D. if everything else fails, there are always push up bras to add to the bra collection! Yeah, baby!

But still. Some female runners don't seem to have this problem and are running around with skinny bodies and Pamela Anderson sized 'cupcakes' in their sport's bra. The way the world works.

I guess Mother Nature was thinking 'small and humble' thoughts when she created me. ;) Wish she had applied that same philosophy to my feet (size 10.5 running shoes...). And to the junk in my trunk. ;) I'll just have to work with what I've got here. ;)

Any thoughts on the dropping fat / dropping cup size combo?


You know you're a runner when - the 'Groceries' post

This is what your shopping basket looks like on your weekend trip to the grocery store. (And yes, my fridge was already stuffed with veggies...noodles aren't the only thing I eat...duh...). How did the nice lady at check out respond? Well... 'Isn't the first nice and crispy day of spring the best day to restock your pantry for summer?'. Uhm...I just nodded and didn't correct her. I think she would be shocked to hear that this is a two weeks supply of taper time food (noodles for dinner!). Carb loading, baby! :)


Honking doesn't turn me on

It doesn't.

In fact, despite of what some men might believe the same goes for most women: we do NOT get turned on by honking. On the contrary.

Okay, I won't go all 'men are pigs' on you. Because, A. I kind of like men, and B. I would be insulting the pigs. And there are a lot of great guys out there. Just wanted to point that out.

So, on a more serious note, I do NOT have a problem with men in general. It's just the honking, the 'hello, hottie', the 'Phieuw-ieuw' (uhm...whistling?), the cars pulling over, the cycling next to you and talking to you at the same time, and the butt grabbing kind of men that annoy the heck out of me. When I'm running, that is. It's not just annoying actually (I can handle annoying), sometimes it's down right creepy.

Example: yesterday's 15+-miler took me through a forest. I was running next to a somewhat busy road, but still...trees everywhere. Beautiful. And then a car with four guys in it pulled over, honking, started driving next to me at my pace, and the guys were yelling at me ('need a lift?', 'nice legs', 'hello, hotness'...the usual 'funny' stuff). And then it hit me. There weren't a lot of runners and cyclists at the trail I was on. And the cars were driving by fast. If these guys would drag me into their car, no one would know. I was creeped out. And up to that point I felt safe. Those guys took that away from me. Literally. Last night I had a nightmare about what ditches one could drag and drop a body into. Needless to say that I didn't get a whole lot of sleep.

Does the outfit matter?

When I told one of my co-workers about this incident this morning, her reply was 'were you wearing a running skirt?'. Yes, I was (and I was also wearing a long sleeve, hat and compression socks - fully covered), but does that justify the pulling over and following me? In my opinion, it doesn't. Plus, whether I'm wearing a skirt or shorts or tights, it doesn't really matter anyway: the honking continues. Apparently a girl on her (long) run is an extreme turn-on to some guys. And considering all the sweating, burping and farting that's going on when I'm on my long run, I don't get that. But that's not the point.

Feel turned on if you feel like it. It's fine with me. I just have one teeny tiny request. Please don't express it in a way that creeps me out. And that involves (endless) honking and pulling over.

To all the good 'non-creeping female runners out' guys out there: please tell those 'honking and pulling over' types to drop the act. ;)

Long Legs on the Loose Runningskirts.com running skirt giveaway!

Want a new running skirt? Need a new running skirt? Check out this kick-#ss giveaway! Long Legs on the Loose running skirts giveaway


Friday faves - Favorites for the weekend

1. The temps aren't chill-tastic anymore! Goodbye winter coat! So...I'll get the chance to walk around in my Vibram Five Fingers all weekend! Except for the running part of the weekend of course... My calves would hate me if I'd do a long run in my Five Fingers at this point. 2. Sunday is supposed to be nice and sunny. Thank the running gods for spring weather! 3. I'm having sushi for dinner tonight. Enough said. 4. I've uploaded Meb's Run to Overcome to my e-reader to read this weekend. I might even start reading it tonight. :) 5. There is a fresh bottle of Mojito cocktail-mix waiting for me in the fridge. :) 6. The Runningskirts.com Chocofleurs strappy tank top that Hiphardlopen has send to me, and that I'm actually wearing at the moment is the new addition to my 'favorite running tops' list. Comfy! 7. It's Friday. How I love Fridays! :) 8. And I'm having sushi tonight. Oh, I already said that? ;) Good luck to everyone racing this weekend! Kick-ass PR's! :)


Three Things Thursday

1. Cupcake Marathon: The Cupcake Marathon participants are seriously running there butts off to get their miles in! Amazing job, you guys! :)

2. Running dress: Isn't this the cutest thing out there? Seriously, this running dress looks so much better than other running dresses out there (no offense, this is just my opinion...and we all know what that's worth...). Brand? Runningskirts.com. I'm in love.

Photo courtesy of www.hiphardlopen.nl

3. Paris Marathon: Change of plans. I'd originally planned on dressing up as a superheroine. Most of you voted for the Robin outfit. Well....I'm letting go of the idea of dressing up as a superhero. Why? Well...in all honesty, I don't really consider myself as superhero material. Emz on the other hand would 100% qualify as superhero material (Uhm...24-hour treadmill run? Enough said.). Then again, I would 100% qualify as 'Queen of messing up race photos' material. It's Queen of something, right?
So...as for the outfit, I'm seriously considering dressing up as a Bonbon / Fancy chocolate. Because chocolate and moi are as tight as Paris Hilton and her purse dogs. And since I'm not planning on setting any speed records (even if I did plan on setting any, well...I'm not even filling in the blanks.). Fingers crossed that Runningskirts will deliver me the much needed Choco Fleurs skirt (to complete the outfit) in time! :) Any outfit ideas are more than welcome.


Hydration is key - The 'What (not) to do' post

Temperatures are warming up. I can hear the birds chirping in the garden. The scent of spring is here.

And I'm sweating a heck of a lot more during my runs!

I need aqua! And so do you! Come on, you know you do!

Hydration is key

I can't point this out often enough: hydration is key. Not only during a run, but also throughout the day. Every day.
1. As said, hydrate throughout the day. Start when you get up in the morning and keep it up till you go to bed at night. Minimum: 1 1/2 - 2 liters (hey, I'm Dutch, we do it metric!) a day. I try to stick to averaging +/- 3 liters a day. Works for me.
My go to (besides aqua): Pukka Detox Fennel tea (herbal tea, 100% caffeine free): 2 liters a day cleans up the mess formerly known as my body. :)
Also, I feel that when I hydrate well throughout the day, I have less hydration issues during a run.
2. During a run: especially on longer runs, don't stick to just water. Also work on your electrolyte intake. Important. Seriously. My go to: GU and Gatorade.
3. During a run: Drink small amounts of water / energy drink on a frequent basis. For example, every 15 minutes. Don't wait till you get thirsty.
4. After a run: don't stop drinking when you've finished your run. Preferably grab a recovery drink. You'll recover faster and feel better (and are less likely to crash after a long long run - embarrassing enough, I've been there...).
1. Try to avoid drinking excessive amounts of alcohol. Might look like you're getting a lot of fluids in, but it will actually dehydrate you.
2. Do not gulp water in during a run. This will cause cramps and might even make you vomit (again...believe me, I've been there).
3. Race day: don't grab the race energy drink at the aid station, when you haven't tried that specific type out during training. Don't!
4. ...forget your water bottle! I carry one in my handbag (hey, large bags are still tha bomb, so no shame here ;)). I can have a sip whenever I want to. Bonus: I won't have to spend money on those over-priced bottles of bottled water. :)
Do you have any hydration advice to add?


RazzyRoo Headbands Review and Cupcake Marathon prize!

Cheryl over at RazzyRoo was sweet enough to send me a couple of her headbands to review. And to hand out as prizes for the Cupcake Marathon! Thanks, Cheryl!

RazzyRoo Headbands

I tried the Headbands out on a 5 mile run (I really needed to wear a thick Buff headband for the longer runs, due to the chilly temps). I also tried them out strolling around town and going out to dinner.

The fit

In my opinion, the fit is similar to the bands they sell at Sweatybands. However, I feel the RazzyRoo headbands have a slightly less tight strap in the back. And that's a good thing, since I did not feel like my brain was being squeezed out of my skull while I was wearing the RazzyRoo headbands!


These bands do NOT slip. At all. And I have some crazy thick hair. Slippery hair. Pretty slippery hair, as in hair a curling iron can't get curls in. That slippery. But the RazzyRoo Headbands tamed my lion's mane (okay, 'mane'? How the bleep did I come up with that...)! :)

The design

Check out the photos below. Cheryl knows which designs to pick. Fun, sassy. Enough said.

So, show Cheryl some love and go over to the RazzyRoo Facebook Page and click that good old 'Like' button! :) And while you're at it, check the RazzyRoo website. And don't forget to go over to the 'socks' section: I'm deeply in love with the 'Bad Ass' knee highs!

Okay, crappy photo, but I wanted to get the Swiss Alps in the background in the photo. Fail...
The four designs: the skinny navy glitter headband is my favorite!

The RazzyRoo non-slip velvet: it works! They do NOT slip! And I have some slippery hair, believe me!
I somehow love that it says 'Made in the USA' on the inside. :)
And where does the Cupcake Marathon come in? Cheryl at RazzyRoo handed out the headbands as prizes in the Cupcake Marathon raffle! So, for one lucky lady / guy (guys can wear headbands too, right?) there is some cool swag to win! :) Huge thanks to Cheryl!


Let me introduce you to Snowmageddon 2011

A girl's got to do, what a girl's got to do.

And yes, that could imply running a 22-miler / 35K in a blizzard. No kidding, it could. And that's what happened to me...last Saturday. And nope, I did not know that the weather would turn against me 3 miles / 5K into the run. I'm not that insane. The weather reports had informed me about cloudy weather, not about 'crazy snow' weather. And 'crazy snow' it was. The 600 meter elevation gain (part of it at 10-15% incline) did not make this long run any easier on me.

Uhm, yeah... Not a good look on me.

Well, at least I could see something. It wasn't much, but still...
No vacation without getting myself a new fugly headband. :) Actually...this one isn't even that awful to look at. :)
And guess what? A couple of miles into it, I didn't really mind the crazy weather anymore. At all. It kept my mind of my pace and I ended up smiling through most of it. :) I did get some strange looks, though. Might have been the pumpkin dot running skirt I was wearing. Might have been the frosty eye brows. Might have been my goofy smile. Might have been Aerosmith blasting through my Ipod (get it? Snowmageddon...Aerosmith...). I guess I'll never know for sure. ;)
Plus, that Salomon GoreTex running jacket I'm wearing in the photos (got it at 50% off :)), is a life saver: review coming up a.s.a.p..
Oh, and I'm ba-ack. ;) And feeling homesick... how I love those Swiss Alps. :) Thank the running gods for Dutch spring weather! :)


The First Few Miles

I'm not a huge fan of the first few miles of a run.

Well, let me rephrase that. I'm not a fan at all of the first few miles of a run. To be more precise: I'm struggling through the first 3 miles / 5K of my runs. Yep, all of them.

There is this Dutch saying stating that the last part of everything (for example: a project at work, a marathon, a work out) is the hardest part. This does not apply to me. At all. I'm the girl you will definitely not catch smiling during the first 5K of a marathon. Then again, I'm the girl that's smiling like a mad girl in the last couple of miles. Nutso, I know. Maybe that's also why I usually try to avoid 5K races.

Don't get me wrong. When I head out for a run, I'm looking forward to it, only to find myself feeling blah for the first three miles. After that, I'm smiling. Yep, smiling. Even on a hilly (okay, monster hills) 20-miler. And enjoying the scenery. Especially in these gorgeous Swiss Alps. Every run feels like a precious gift out here (okay, cheesy, I know. Get over it.).

When finishing the Swiss Alpine Marathon K42 last July, I was smiling and jumping around like nobody's business. Best finish line photos ever. Hard to believe that I looked like I was ready to throw myself of a cliff at the 5K mark. Same thing happened at the New York City Marathon. Even with a calf strain. There's seriously something wrong with me.

I'm having a hard time believing that they will ever find a cure for my 'first miles' blues. They probably won't. Those first three miles/5K are just something I've learned to deal with. The thought of feeling amazing after that first hump, get's me through.

I guess I'm build for the long run. Or so I hope. ;)

Anyone out there battling this same problem?


Three Things Thursday

Shortest Three Things Thursday post ever. Fact. It's not that easy to get myself some internet access in these (gorgeous) Swiss Alps. I'm working with what I've got here. ;)

1. I do not want to leave Davos. At all. I know it's a vacation and I'm supposed to go back to work in a couple of days. But I would very much prefer staying in Davos. I guess I'll have to stuff myself with cheese fondue tonight to feel less blah. ;)

2. Mountain work outs make you stronger. I truly figured that this wouldn't be the case, but I was wrong. Big time! Hard work outs, but the amazing scenery sure makes up for a lot, and I do feel like I'm putting in quality work outs. Message here? Find yourself some mountains! In a couple of days I'll be doomed to the 15% incline treadmill again... And you know how I feel about treadmills. ;)

3. There's still time to join the virtual Cupcake Marathon! Click on the link in the side bar to join! :) Fun!


Karl Lagerfeld move over...

...there's a new designer in town!

I did not realize how awful this combo was until I saw the photos. Purple shirt, Navy/purple shorts, hot pink compression socks, orange Buff head band and Orange Dot runningskirts.com arm sleeves. What. Was. I. Thinking!

On the other hand. Running in a short sleeve on your ski trip pretty much rocks! :)

What's your biggest running gear fashion faux-pas? :) (Yep, I'm just asking this to feel less 'fashion freak' about myself...)


Some uphill training

Just a quick post from the Swiss Alps!

Today: schedule called for a rest day. So I did a Swiss Alpine Marathon uphill part work out (600 meter elevation / 5K - 12% incline). Speed walked up the mountain. Took the 'easy' way down. Ha! ;)

Cute! :)
Yep, definitely not 21 anymore...

Queen of the silly faces...


You know you're a runner when... - the Swiss edition

...this is what you take on a ski (yep, SKI) trip...

...Okay...and I did bring those... (yep, Telemark boots...I'm even into a 'silly' kind of skiing ;))...

Okay...just turn you're head. ;) Weird photo... ;)


Photo Friday - Throwback post

Well...Throwback...this photo was taken just a few weeks ago - on my 28K birthday run. But I've just uploaded it and I love it. :)


Hills the size of my butt

Okay, the Swiss Alps rock. They do. No kidding. They are my life-long love.

So, I've instructed my house sitter (best. thing. ever) on how not to kill my cats. I've packed up my dog. Stuffed my bag with running shoes. And here I am: Davos, Switzerland. Closest thing to heaven on earth. Don't believe me? Come over and check it out, but please don't tell all of your friends about it. I'd like Davos to be somewhat exclusive. ;)

Being up in the Swiss Alps = I don't have regular access to the internet like I normally do. This means less babbling along about 'silly' stuff. ;) Lucky you! ;) I'll try to update my blog whenever I'll get the chance to.

Long run kicked my butt

To sum things up. I had a long long run (20-miler) on deck the day after I'd arrived in Davos. Kicked. My. Butt. This girl is used to a flat flat course and gentle hills. Gentle hills. The 'hills' (nope, mountains!) in Davos are far from gentle! Hills the size of my butt. 25% of that 20-miler had a 10-15% elevation. Yep, 10-15%. Keeping up the long run pace (which is already slow) was not an option. At all. Ouch. Oh, and of course I've already tried out part of the Swiss Alpine course! :) Also kicked my butt.

Okay, I NEED to work on my steep uphill running skills. Any advice? Please?

And to my Swiss readers: Anyone up for a run? I'd love the company! :)


You know you're a runner when - the Travel edition

1. ...You're trying to convince yourself that you really need to take trail running shoes (x 2), long distance running shoes (x1), tempo run running shoes (x1) and nasty weather (Goretex) running shoes (x1) for a 2 week vacation.

2. ...This also means that you're trying to convince yourself that those trail running shoes could double as 'going out' shoes. Plus, you won't have room for 'normal' shoes anyway.

3. ...There isn't a single piece of cotton in your travel bag. All technical gear...

4. ...You've downloaded Meb's 'Run to Overcome' on your e-reader, to read in the car.

5. ...You've already mapped out the routes for your long runs on mapmyrun.com. And you now know the exact distance from the place you're staying at to the other side of town. The exact exact distance.

6. ...There's an impressive amount of Tylenol, Arnica gel and Biofreeze in your travel bag. Enough to help a small African town out for an entire year. It's better to be prepared, right?

7. ...As we speak, you're trying to figure out ways to stuff another pair of running shoes in your travel bag...

8. ...You've researched the possible WiFi spots in town to update DailyMile. Plus, you're seriously obsessing over this.

9. ...When you told your co-workers that you would be back in a couple of weeks, they instantly reacted saying 'Oh, you're going to Switzerland to run?'. Because that's the first thing that springs to mind when you think about going to Switzerland for a vacation...in the winter time.

10. ...You've already been stalking local sport shops to find out whether or not they carry the Salomon Speedcross Trail running shoes. There's nothing wrong with just trying them on, right? ;)


Three Things Thursday

1. Sushi: The events of tonight's run = sushi doesn't qualify as 'go to' pre run food for this girl. Enough said.

2. You know you're a runner when...: ...the pile of clothes you packed for a ski trip is mainly filled with running clothes. You can use running shirts to layer up underneath your ski jacket and to look cute when going out for dinner, right? Those runningskirts.com long sleeves are too cute - seriously. Using these for running only would be such a waste of cute gear. ;) Of course your friends won't stop reminding you that running gear is not supposed to double as 'going out for dinner' gear. But you can't blame them. They are not runners. ;)

3. Kinesio tape: Best. Thing. Ever. I was a bit sceptic at first (being used to 'normal' taping techniques since my competitive skiing days), but I have completely fallen in love with the whole kinesio taping thing. Haven't tried it yet? Do! It works, well, at least for me it does. :) But please let me know if you have a different opinion. :)


February Recap Stats

Miles/Km planned/ran: 150 miles / 240K planned / 156 miles / 250K ran

Rest days planned / taken: 8 / 8

Highest mileage/km week: 14-20 February: 43 miles / 69 km (still trying to recover from that lower leg injury)

Long runs planned / ran: 4 /4

Pace/speed workouts planned / ran: 8 / 8

Cross training workouts planned / done: 8 / 8

Donuts burned: 104

Current shame-inducing guilty pleasure: watching 'SATC' re-runs

Current obsessions: cinnamon cookies

Current drink: fennel tea, Gatorade (lemon) and diet coke (I know...bad girl)

Current song: everything Coldplay - perfect long run companion

Current need: uhm...a waterproof running jacket

Current triumph: making it through my 28th birthday without getting liquored up. ;)

Current bane of my existence: the pile of work on my desk...

Current blessings: being able to run with my dog...still, my dog. I know...I'm a big old 'dog' lady.

Current excitement: snow, snow and skiing!