Archive for January, 2011


a very happy un-birthday to me!

   Posted by: arcanai    in love my husband, pix

alright, so i know that i was dreading the whole birthday thing but i’ve gotta give my hubby credit.  he did a spectacular job of making it the best day ever.  i  was overwhelmed with the thought that he put into making me feel special and loved.  after a day of one suprise after another, he shared his “master plan” with me during dinner:

30 presents for my beautiful wife Arcanai

  1. Start of 30 I Love You’s for the day 6:00 – he started out taking a huge risk… his alarm went off at 05:45!  said i, “why is your alarm going off?”  “we’re going out.”  “seriously?!”  of course, while he’s getting out of bed and getting ready, i’m laying there thinking it’s sunday and my sleep-in day and we didn’t get home from the mma fights until after 01:00 so i’ve only had a few hours of sleep.  he lucked out because i had way too much water while eating dinner at midnight so i had actually just gotten back in bed when his alarm went off.  i would have been much less amicable to the idea had i been asleep. 
  2. Start of 30 kisses for the day
  3. Start of 30 hugs for the day
  4. Sunrise at end of pier 6:30 – so he got me out of bed and we headed down to the pier to watch the sunrise.  it was our first time on the new pier and i was surprised at how far it went out.  we were the only ones out there so it was peaceful and quiet and just a lovely morning.  we watched the sun gather its glory from behind our building, ultimately rising over a building a couple doors down from us.   my boy hugged me and loved on me while we enjoyed the start of the new day.  when we started walking back down the pier, the dolphins showed up and we stuck around a bit longer to watch them make their morning trek down the beach. img_2603img_2629img_2640
  5. Walk on the beach (quality time) – this got skipped because i was pretty chilly after being out in the cool wind on the pier in my flip-flops and so when he asked if i wanted to go down to the beach i told him my feet were too cold.  he made sure to make it up with another “gift” later in the day… a haircut that about made him wanna cry 🙂
  6. Bubble Bath – when we got back, he drew a nice hot bubble bath to warm me up.  it was heavenly.
  7. Breakfast in Bed – and when i got out of the bath, he tucked me into bed and served me breakfast… eggs cooked perfectly over medium with bacon and cheese biscuits. 
  8. Personal Birthday Card (nothing bought) – this was sitting on my breakfast tray.  a nice little handmade card that says
    1. 30 years ago the world got one special girl.  One that would become my wife, partner, and best friend.  I hope today and every day you know how much I love you.
  9. Morning Massage (30 Minutes) – after we had finished eating, he pulled out the massage lotion and i was treated to a fabulous full-body massage that lasted nearly an hour. 
  10. Birthday Morning Nap– between the hot bubble bath, full belly, and relaxing massage, i was totally ready for the nap!
  11. Pier Park Shopping – where i got this very cute blouseimg_0735
  12. Lunch at Pier Park – mmmpanera
  13. Marble Slab – omg, it has been so long!  i had the cheesecake ice cream with strawberries mixed in.  so, so good.
  14. Trip to Panama City Beach Winery for Wine Tasting – this is such a fun winery.  they do unique and fruity wines and free tastings.
  15. Buy Arcanai’s Favorite bottle from the tasting – i was torn between the kiwi, cranberry, and blueberry.  i ended up going with the blueberry but foresee the cranberry in my future as well.
  16. Trip to Wal-Mart (we never do anything without going to Wal-Mart) – LOL!!!  i love that he included this on his list.  it’s so true!
  17. Birthday Flowers – these lovely tulips.  i heart tulips.img_2658
  18. Birthday Cake – mmmmcarvelcake
  19. 1:33 in the afternoon birth time (Happy Birthday Song)
  20. Good ole fashioned spanking 30 lashes – yep, he went there 🙂
  21. Funny Movie (holding down couch) inglorious basterds.  this actually happened before lunch because i needed some time to wake up after the nap.
  22. Evening Massage (30 minutes) – this came after the walk on the beach below.  i was shocked when i was instructed to lay down for ANOTHER massage.  i informed him that he was spoiling me and this was going to have to become the sunday norm!
  23. Walk on Beach 4:45 (quality time) – we got back from the mall and headed out to the beach for a short walk.  the sand was not nearly as cold as it would have been in the morning.img_2648
  24. Sunset on Beach – sadly, the clouds were not cooperative.  we stayed on the beach hoping for a sunset but it never came.
  25. Personal Bath – this is where he shampooed and conditioned my hair (scalp massage) and then cut it against his will.
  26. Dinner with friends Bone Fish Grill 6:30 – there were sixteen of us in all.  good friends, great conversation, fabulous food!img_0732img_0734
  27. Glass of Wine
  28. Night Time Walk on beach – dinner ran long so we skipped this to visit with our friends from atlanta, the bastard suns, who were passing through for the night on their winter tour.  they stay at scooter/sunny’s house when they come to town.  sadly, they’re playing an hour away on TUESDAY night so i don’t think we’re going to get to watch them this time around.
  29. Hot Tub– i love hot-tubbing on a cool night with a glass of wine 🙂
  30. Romantic Movie when in rome.  the car scene cracks me up!

i don’t wanna and you can’t make me!

   Posted by: arcanai    in Nuthin' Special

i’m refusing to have a birthday this year.  i just am not going to do it.  i’ve never really worried over age but, all of a sudden, i’m having terrible anxiety about turning another year older.  or, more to the point, another decade older.  it’s really been getting to me for months.  i was looking back over what i had to say five years ago:

monday – 30january2006 – 17:12
it’s official. i’m old. one-quarter of a century to be exact. i never really considered 25 to be one of the milestone birthdays but i think it kind of is. i feel older now. not decrepit and worn-out old, but no-longer-a-teenager old (yes, i have been trying to hold on to that for the last 5 years). i guess i actually feel like a bonafide adult now. scary. so i suppose it’s time for a look back on my first quarter of a century.

i have:

  • survived and {mostly} recovered from two semi-violent victimizations
  • graduated from college three years after my high school graduation (even though i took a two-semester hiatus as a result of the above)
  • paid my credit cards off monthly for the last 4 years
  • had the wedding of my dreams
  • married the most wonderful man on earth
  • visited all fifty states in the u.s.
  • seen a moonbow
  • taken a two-person roadtrip that covered 23 states, 8000 miles, 9 state/national parks in 19 days
  • walked through glacier melt (ouch!)
  • watched a whale fully breach from 20 yards away
  • hiked through rainforest and waded through water to see a hawaiian waterfall
  • watched the sun rise from the top of a 10,000 foot volcano
  • rode a bicycle 38 miles down that volcano
  • visited three canadian provinces
  • crossed the world’s longest wooden bridge
  • visited ten european countries
  • avoided speaking english (as much as possible) in 7 of those countries (dutch, polish, and czech are all greek to me)
  • paid off a house in two years
  • become a completely different person for the third time

anyhow, it’s been a great birthday. my wonderful hubby surprised me with a reservation at the melting pot. it was fabulous! exactly how i remembered it. what a terrifically thoughtful husband to take me someplace even though it’s not his thing. we had a fantastic meal and then visited my furniture and went to kohls. a good evening was had by me (and i even think he enjoyed it a bit). but my birthday really became official when my mom called me at 13:33 to tell me the story of what i was doing 25 years ago (namely, putting her through 36 hours of labor and making her miss three meals in a row). i appreciate that she calls me every year at 13:33 to tell me the story of me. it really makes my birthday every year.

you see that?  i was all accomplishments and wonderment and i couldn’t imagine life ever again being less than fabulous.  so much has happened since then – some good, some bad, some shattering.  and, ironically, that happens to have been the last year that i got that special call.  now, this past year+ has been full of trials and tribulations that have left me jaded and cynical all over again.  this sounds like a pity party… i know that i am blessed and i am thankful…  but my life is not what i thought it was and it is not following the path that i had believed it was.  i’m getting ready to enter a new decade of life and i’m so very uncertain and scared.  i’m having to face the fact that my youth is behind me while redefining my expectations.  it really is a lot to swallow and i’m just not ready for it yet.  maybe next year.



   Posted by: arcanai    in getting healthy

though i haven’t been posting, i have continued my training.  i’m proud to say that i’m halfway through week four (more than 1/3 of the way done!) and i haven’t skipped or shortchanged a run yet.  go me!  as indicated by my last post, i was having a pretty tough time with my out-of-town training but i kept up with it.  i think that first run down there where i was so super fast (for me) might have caused a bit of injury to my legs.  nothing severe but enough to make my training highly uncomfortable for the rest of that week.  my six miler was torturous and my 5k with family was nothing to write home about.  however, the really bad part was spending the day walking/standing around disney after running a total of 15k the night before and morning of.  by the end of the night, after a particularly long wait in line, my feet were screaming for some rest.  when i got back home, i decided to back off and stop pushing and just train comfortably.  happily, this has made for some great runs.  my eight miler over the weekend was possibly the best run i’ve ever had.  i woke up dreading it but it was perfect.  i didn’t push, never got winded, and still managed a 13:15 average pace.   the weather was very cooperative, which was very helpful – even though it was crystal clear and sunny, the temperature was 30 when we started and 40 when we finished so the sun kept me from being cold and the cold kept me from baking in the sun.  truly, we need more days like that.  when i finished my eight miles, i could have easily kept going and i managed a very nice .2 mile sprint to finish it out.  moreover, i haven’t been in any pain since coming home.  last year, i ate motrin like candy the whole time i was training.  for those first two weeks this year, more of the same.  this past week and a half i haven’t had any need for it.  of course, things are always subject to change but right now i feel i’ve come to terms with my running and we have a cordial understanding.  i won’t push it, and it won’t make me cry anymore.


when the mind is weaker than the flesh

   Posted by: arcanai    in getting healthy

that was me today.  i lost it.  totally lost the mental game.  i was running along, looked down and saw that i was only at mile three of a four mile run and i just lost it.  i started crying… crying?… there’s no crying in running!… which really threw my hubby.  he didn’t know what to say or do to make it better for me.  and it’s stupid because i wasn’t hurting and i wasn’t even that drained.  i just lost it.  i managed to push through and finish my run but it was highly unsatisfying.  i felt like i had failed and am highly discouraged becuase it was only four miles.  i have to do 13.1.  before the week is out, i have to do six.  i need to find a way to gain better control over my mental game.  i’ve never lost it that badly.  *sigh*  so, today was 4.16 mi in 51:27 for an average pace of 12:23. 




   Posted by: arcanai    in getting healthy

i never got the chance to rant about the insanity of my saturday.  let’s just start on friday evening, when we stayed out way too late enjoying dinner and conversation with neighbors and i ended up having to stay up half the night to get the laundry done and presents wrapped.  saturday, we were up at the crack of dawn for a race in which hubby was participating and i was volunteering.  we left right after the awards, getting home close to noon, where it was a frantic race to get packed up to leave town.  quick bite to eat and we were on the road at 13:30 but three stops before leaving town meant we didn’t really get going until 14:00.  me, exhausted and unable to sleep in the car plus six hours of driving, plus another prolonged stop and one quick pickup before reaching our destination got us in around 21:30.  grabbed the suitcase, said a cursory “hi” to the fam, got changed, and hit the streets for my thank-God-i-did-my-long-run-thursday three miler.  happily, hubby went with me to keep me company on the dark streets at 22:00.  and it was a great run!  i PR’d my pace over that distance and was very happy about it.  unfortunately, it was also the first run i’ve ever done that ended in severe cramping.  i had told hubby when we finished, i wanted to walk back to the stop sign to cool down.  half way to the stop sign, my left quad started cramping, by the time we reached the stop sign and turned back to the house, my right calf was locked up, when we reached the house, it was all i could do to move my legs at all and they were screaming in horrendous pain.  i sobbingly asked hubby to run up and get my bathing suit while i dragged myself out to the pool and started removing shoes and zensas.  i changed into my suit, and sat down in the frigid pool for ten or fifteen minutes, stretching and flexing my legs in the icy water.  during this time, i decided that the cramping was most likely due to lack of nutrition and hydration as all i’d eaten all day was a chicken caesar salad at lunch time and hubby and i had shared my water on the drive.  when i got out of the pool, i was feeling a bit better.  i drank some sodium-filled chicken broth and was feeling much, much better.  apparently, i have to watch my electrolytes better when running.  lesson learned.  still, my run was an awesome 3.05 mi in 34:56 for an average pace of 11:27!

today’s run… not so awesome.  even after my day of rest yesterday, my legs were very unhappy about the demand upon them.  my calves felt very tight and i purposely set out at an easy pace.  even with the slow-down, i had to walk several times as my legs just weren’t having it.  sadly, i was also fighting the skies and they won.  with about three-quarters of a mile to go, the lightning started and the clouds opened up.  i dislike running in the rain.  and i really don’t like lightning in the mix.  i kept thinking about the heart-rate monitor around my chest turning into an instant defibrillator.  but, there was really no quick way to get home so i just finished out my run.  hubby must have gotten rained out on his bike ride and discovered that i was still out there because i met him in the car just down the street from the house.  i chose to keep going since i was already so wet and so close to the three mile mark.  so my goal was to keep an easy twelve minute pace.  i was at a 12:20 or so when the sky opened up and knocked it down to 12:12 thanks to mother nature’s unwelcome prodding.  my legs were really unhappy with the pace pick-up at the end.  oh well.




what’s your type?

   Posted by: arcanai    in Nuthin' Special

apparently, i’m an exercise blogger.  whodda thunk it?  clearly, over the last year, that’s the only topic i’ve really felt blog-worthy.  good thing i never had a big readership to begin with because i’m sure i would be boring them all away by now.  fortunately, this little piece of interweb real estate is all about me so i post what i want and these days, that’s exercise.  but, hey, that’s exciting stuff for this couch potato!


desperately needed

   Posted by: arcanai    in getting healthy

tonight, i was incredibly awesome!  and not a moment too soon because i was very much in need of a pick-me-up both actively and personally.  last night… seriously a low point in my life.  no, not going into it.  tonight, though, i rocked.  i decided to switch things up and do my long run tonight on the bridge so that i’ll only have three miles to do when i get down to orlando saturday night.  my decision was also helped by the fact that there was some construction that prevented us from doing our normal bridge route so we ended up starting from our running store, which is 1.66 miles from the start of the bridge so, really, i had to do five if i wanted to actually go over the bridge.  i don’t take well to changes to my running routine.  i am comfortable with my bridge and my park runs and i don’t like going outside those comfort zones much during training.  many find tonight’s route preferable because you only have to do the bridge once for the five miles, which is twice over on our regular route.  me, i prefer the twice over actually.  i actually like going over the bridge… i can sprint up it and then i get the sweet reprieve of gravity.  it’s a beautiful thing and i actually prefer it to just flat running.  it pushes me to change up my pace so that i don’t just settle into a lazy stride.  this is why i did all my long runs there last year.  and an added bonus is that the more comfortable i am on the bridge, the better prepared i am for hills on race day.  so, tonight was a lot of flat and it was also lonelier because i only passed people once whereas i usually see people more because they’ll be doing multiple laps.  there was also a long, very dark stretch that i didn’t like.  fortunately, i had my hubby who stayed with me and another chick who is roughly my pace.  we had our own little running pack so that was nice.  so, why am i so awesome?  i managed to push out 5.06 miles in one hour flat!  i didn’t track my runs thoroughly last year but i’m pretty sure my fastest five was more in the 1:10:00+ range.   tonight’s average pace was 11:54!!!  i never thought i’d be able to maintain sub-12 for that distance.  i’m so proud of me!



why, oh why, am i doing this again?

   Posted by: arcanai    in getting healthy

seriously.  did i not learn my lesson last year?!  day two and i’m so over this training with thirty-four more runs to go. *sigh*  in all not-fairness, i blame the call that i got shortly before my run which was a very happy call that did nothing but remind me of very, very bad things. running is a mental sport, you know.  anyhow, the run itself was actually very good for me.  4.05 miles in 48:03 for an average pace of 11:53.  that’s great for me.  but i truly wanted to die during and shortly after. 



day one

   Posted by: arcanai    in getting healthy


and so today officially begins my half marathon training yet again.  clearly i did not learn my lesson last time or i am just a glutton for punishment.  maybe if i meet my goal this time, i’ll be able to hang it up for good.  for those wanting to play along at home, below is the training plan i’ve come up with.  pretty, eh? 

Week Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun Total
1/3- 1/9 3 4 Xtrain 3 Xtrain 5 Rest 15
1/10-1/16 3 4 Xtrain 3 Xtrain 6 Rest 16
1/17-1/23 3 5 Xtrain 3 Xtrain 8 Rest 19
1/24-1/30 3 5 Xtrain 3 Xtrain 10 Rest 21
1/31-2/6 4 5 Xtrain 4 Xtrain 11 Rest 24
2/7-2/13 4 5 Xtrain 4 Xtrain 9 Rest 26
2/14-2/20 4 6 Xtrain 4 Xtrain 12 Rest 22
2/21-2/27 3 4 Xtrain 3 Xtrain 8 Rest 18
2/28-3/6 3 3 Xtrain Walk 2 Xtrain Rest 13.1 21.1

so today was a blue, 3 mile day.  i went on my lunch break to the park by the mall and ran three loops.  i adjusted my route slightly on each lap trying to find a true mile.  i think i’ve almost got it figured out.  today ended up at 3.23 miles with an average pace of 11:39, which is better than i expected since it felt like a very poor effort with copious amounts of walking.  i was all alone, the sun was very bright, and the book that i’ve just started is not doing a good job of holding my attention yet – i sure hope that changes in the next run or two.  more details on the run below: