Tuesday, December 30, 2014


I have decided to start blogging again (yay?).

My knee is now completely healed (definite yay), but now I weigh more than I ever have in my entire life. Getting back into running is tougher than ever before with the extra pounds. I'm the one who put the pounds on and I will take them off.

Not much to report with training. Just the ol' run/walk routine. I'm using Nike this time and training using their 5k program. I like that it incorporates time for cross training and reminds me what I have to do each day. I recommend it for sure. Never underestimate the cross training for it makes you stronger and gives your poor knees a break!

So in order to take this weight off and improve my overall health, I'm doing the keto diet (low carb, high fat diet). The website I'm using (in addition to plenty of forums and other supplementary websites) is http://www.ruled.me/30-day-ketogenic-diet-plan/. Read up if you've never heard of this.
Depression is why I gained the weight in the first place!
So why did I choose this? Why cut out all carbs? Why so drastic? Can I really keep this up?

First, my brother-in-law has been doing this and has experienced quite amazing results. He looks so good that it convinced me to give it a try. What do I have to lose, really? I've done the usual low fat diets with good carbs and blah blah blah. You name it, I've tried it. And I had some success but never for the long term.

Now I'm not stupid. I've researched my butt off with this. Made sure it is safe for myself. And it is. For me, the lifestyle change isn't that bad. Sure, I miss pasta, bread, and the like, but I get to eat LOADS of my favorite foods, especially cheese! I feel like I can keep this up for life. And yes, you will gain weight when you eat a carbohydrates. And I'm okay with that. I'm going to slip up and have a milkshake, or a cookie, or some pizza, AND THAT'S OKAY. As long as I never go above where I am now, I'm plenty okay with that. This change/lifestyle isn't for everyone, but the benefits for me personally and medically far outweigh the downside of not eating bread everyday.

So it's the end of day 2 of this change. The recipes I've found are fun to prepare and tasty. I'm not going to lie, I really really want a cookie right now. Or sugar of any kind. But I'm not physically hungry at all. That's the good part of this low carb, high fat, moderately high protein thing.
That's very accurate ^_^
The point of this all is to teach the body to use fat/ketones as a source of fuel instead of carbohydrates. And today I'm starting to feel the effects of what is known as the "keto flu."
The basic symptoms are:
  • headaches
  • nausea
  • upset stomach
  • Lack of mental clarity (brain fog)
  • sleepiness
  • fatigue
The symptoms I'm really feeling right is everything but the headache. Drinking plenty of water is recommended to ease the symptoms, which is probably why I don't have the headache. Trying to get your body into nutritional ketosis (not to be confused with ketoacidosis which is experienced by diabetics and can be life-threatening) is rough and I'm constantly running to the bathroom since this process acts as a diuretic. The symptoms should pass within 5-14 day with 7 days being the average (that I've read).

I'm going to be honest, right now I'm really wondering if these side effects are worth it. And this is completely normal (from what I've read) and as long as I hang tough a few more days, things will simmer down and I'll feel much better. I'm exhausted and I only worked a 4 hour retail day. The nausea is ridiculous, but peppermint tea (no sweetener of course) is a godsend right now!
My favorite meme for times like these.
If you're interested in doing this, read up and check with your doctor to make sure you're go to go. I'm not an expert by any means. Just a girl who want to be healthy and run long distances for the rest of my life. Namely my first marathon but for 2015, the goal is to run my second half marathon. If things are going good and I'm ready for the full by the end of 2015, then I'm going to go for it. For now, I'm planning the full for 2016.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

“Well, if it can be thought, it can be done, a problem can be overcome” ― E.A. Bucchianeri, Brushstrokes of a Gadfly

So what's the problem to be overcome? My love of quotes always gives me away. 

My knee!

My evil, wonderful knee has decided to finally malfunction. It was only a matter of time until the combination of some excess weight and increased training took its toll on one of my joints. 

So here's the dish: I ran on Sunday, just a 5k (non-runners commence eye rolling), and my knee was aching but I thought nothing of it since it went away after 1.5 miles. When I got home I was extremely thirsty and had my post run snack. I sat down to make sure my mileage logged correctly to RunKeeper (my favorite app to track my mileage!) as always. 

When I went to stand up, my knee was completely locked up and I couldn't stand up! I just tried to straighten my knee, and it felt like my patella (aka: knee cap) was going to pop off accompanied by some intense pain. Thankfully my husband was home to get me some frozen peas and Aleve to help relieve the swelling. I knew what my mom went through since she had some intense arthritis in her knees so I knew something was swollen and that's why I couldn't straighten my leg. 

After some ice and time, I was able to stand up and waddle my way to the shower since I looked and smelled like a swamp monster. The rest of the day was filled with R.I.C.E. (rest, ice, compression, elevation). 

At first, I was devastated. I blamed myself, my weight, and was certain that there was no way I was going to do this marathon. I journaled a bit and finally came into an acceptance of things. Yes, I was hurt. Yes, there is a possibility that I will not be able to run the marathon. Instead of wallowing in self-pity, I decided to take care of myself and learn all about my injury and how to prevent it. Tomorrow, I start specific strength moves aimed at strengthening the muscles in my quadriceps and around my knee coupled with yoga and stretching to increase flexibility. 

I may be down but I am not out!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Running Hiatus

Hello friends!

As you can tell from the title of this blog, I'm going to take a small break/reduction from running. I'm nervous about doing this but I need to focus on making my body stronger since I'm encountering a lot of issues.

On Memorial Day I ran the Old Fort 5 miler in my hometown. It was a warm day but beautiful for running. I started off too fast trying to keep up with my dad and exhausted myself by mile 2.5. I've never wanted to give up so badly in a race before but I kept buggering on. Finished 57:40. I ran the race in my Brooks PureFlow and felt okay during it. Afterwards, and still today, I had crazy awful pain in my feet, ankles, shins and calves. I'm relegating those shoes for 3 miles tops. Also the heel drop (the millimeters difference between the forefoot and heel) is not working with my body. Talk about Achilles tendon pain! Whew! So I'm back in my normal running shoes for training after I heal up.

I've been experiencing some knee pain over the past 2 weeks. One major reason for this is the large amount of weak muscle in my thighs and around my knees. I'm going to be focusing on building up strength by going back to Insanity. Insanity has always helped to build up strength in my lower and upper body. I realize now how important strength training is if you want to run long distances. Weak muscles will not help anything. I like Insanity because it is very cardio based so I won't lose conditioning but I will get much stronger. I'm still going to do a long run and 1-2 short runs a week depending on how I feel. I know the first 2 weeks will be the hardest and afterwards it will get easier...until month 2!
Note awesome strong thighs. That's what I'm aiming for.
I have a lot of work ahead of me! ^_^

In other news, I'm sincerely thinking about becoming a Beachbody coach. I love their exercise programs and I feel they really work for me. I'd love to help other people reach their fitness goals and I believe Beachbody has some really great programs. I need to talk to the husband first before I make any concrete decisions though. I like the thought of being my own boss. We'll see.

Rainy day here. Bleh. Hope everyone is having a good day out there!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

What They Don't tell You About Marathon Training: The Aches and Pains Edition

Hello world!

Today was supposed to be a strength day but it ended up being a rest day. Why?

My lower body feels like it has started a revolution and its name is PAIN.

I think I officially have runners knee. My left knee feels like it is on fire under the patella. My calves are hella tight today and hurt like mad. Everything is tight and painful from the hip down. The only solace I have is that my arches are very happy today. Yay arches!

The majority of my day off today was spent glued to my stick (see photo below) trying to work out all the knots and tightness in my muscles. I feel like I'm finally making some progress now at almost 10 pm. I learned a valuable lesson. I need to stretch before and after running regardless of distance.
Hurts so good.

I loathe admire people who can just jump up and run and have no aches or pains whatsoever. There are plenty of people who have never had an ache, pain, or injury while running. Whatever.

Not me. I know the main reason why is because I'm still overweight. I love food. I'm working on building a healthy relationship with it, but that takes more time than weight loss ads will have you believe. At least for me. I learn and do everything the hard way.

I try to be as optimistic as I can about running and training. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the way crossing the finish line makes me feel, especially at my first half marathon, but getting there is a whole other story.

When I crossed the finish line at the half marathon, I instantly forgot how much blood, sweat and tears went into making that race possible. I forgot about freezing my butt off during the winter just to get some miles in. I forgot about that crazy 12.5 mile run in the rain that wasn't the most pleasant experience, but hey, who needs skin that's dry? I forgot about all the little aches and pains and tight muscles that plagued training.

I have a feeling that this is the first of many walls during this training. A marathon is different than any other race I have encountered so far. Don't get me wrong, the half marathon was very difficult, especially the last 3 miles when the GU+Gatorade mix decided to revolt in my digestive system. I proved to myself that I can run for 2 hrs 42 minutes. Now double that and that is the insanity I'm going to put myself through in October.

This is the very first time that I've honestly thought to myself, "What did you sign yourself up for? Are you mad? Yes, obviously, but seriously, why?" I'm still not quite sure of the answer, but I'm sure I'll find it over the next few months. Look for a post entitled something like, Why I ran a marathon. All I know is that race is going to hurt, but I still cannot wait to give it a go!

I would ask for advice on this pain thing, but I already know the answer:

Going to continue icing my bum knee and massaging my calves so I'll be ready to go for a 5k tomorrow, because of this sweet challenge from Runkeeper:
I can win this LG Lifeband contraption! All you have to do is log a 5k with the Runkeeper app and you're entered. Plus you get a free month of their elite service. Woot woot! I want to see all the fancy stats! If you buy the thing (at $149.95 retail), you get 6 months of Runkeeper Elite for free. I love my Garmin too much to spend that amount of money on a new piece of gear, but if I win and get a free one I'll test it out and see if it is better than my pretty pretty pink Garmin watch. If you're a sap for free things like me, get over to Runkeeper and get your booty in gear!


Friday, May 16, 2014

How Running is Changing My Body Image

Running continues to change my life in many ways. I have a much improved cardiovascular system, my blood pressure is B-E-A-UTIFUL, and new muscles have formed all over my body.

Yet, my body is still FAR from perfect. I can list 100+ things about my body that I'd like to improve, but you know what?

I need this sign as a reminder.

For the first time since I was 4 years old, I'm starting to get some confidence back concerning my body and body image. I can remember traipsing around Sesame Place water park when I was four with my little, slightly round stomach protruding out. I happily splashed around and played with my parents (this was before my little sister came into the picture so I was spoiled!). The only thing I remember thinking about that was body related was how the seat on the fire truck was really hot when I was taking a picture in it.
If I ever have a daughter, I never want her to be as wrapped up with weight as I am/was.

And then I grew up. I became aware of my body compared to others in 2nd grade. I was told by the doctor that I was overweight and put on my very first "diet". No more whole milk, no more soda, no this, that and the other thing. And so began the saga of always labeling myself as "fat".

Currently I am overweight. I'm working to change this as I train for the marathon. I'm much more active than I've ever been, and I love it. Well, I don't love it all the time like when my muscles are tight and cause me a lot of pain, but you know what I mean!

Through running, I've become much more aware of my body. I know when I need water and/or nutrition. I know what aches and pains to push through, and which ones to stop before I do something regrettable. I'm amazed at what my body can do and what it is capable of.
Found this on Deviant Art. Very Awesome!

Now that I'm officially a "half-marathon-er," I have an extra spring in my step. I may not look like someone who runs a half marathon (and soon a full!), but I'm still a runner and I never give up. My confidence level is much higher than it has ever been, and I've noticed my increased willingness to wear tank tops and shorter shorts (I used to stick to shorts that landed at or a tiny bit above my knee).
River has no qualms about body image.
Here she is claiming my closet as her own and photo-bombing my picture.

Sure, people can think what they want. Other people may look and comment, but that says more about them than it does about me. I'd never wear anything that is indecent like those shorts that look like underwear. I draw the line at going that short. I wear things that fit and cover up my ample backside (that I am also proud of! My glutes are lookin' good!), and make sure any other private areas are covered and respectable.
Oh yeah, sweet glutes

For the first time in forever...[cue music from Frozen] I love my body. My body is SO MUCH MORE than what it appears to be. Many times we take for granted how amazing the human body is and only look at the appearance. The next time you feel down on yourself take a few seconds to think about what your body can do instead of how it looks. Chin up buttercup!
Look at those high arches on my feet! *rawr*

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Wine in the Woods 5K Recap and Struggling with Training Motivation

The Wine in the Woods 5k was an interesting race.

First, it was the very first race I went to completely alone. I gave my stressed out husband a pass to relax and sleep in for this one since he has been amazing getting up at 5 am for other races, like the half marathon. Second, it was a lot warmer and sunnier than I was expecting. Around mile 2, I was regretting my decision not to bring a small water bottle with me. There were no water stops on the course. Finally, the course got VERY hilly at the end and I did NOT pace myself accordingly. I wanted to set a PR so I basically ran at tempo speed. I finished with a final time of 34 minutes 12 seconds. Still a good time and a minute improvement over my last 5k, but I was hoping for 32-33 minutes. I was disappointed, but after putting things into perspective, I'm really proud of that time even though it was hot, humid and hilly.

Having such a negative view of that race time explains the frame of mind I've been in for the past week. I'm forgetting where I've come from. My first 5k, only 13 months ago, had a finish time of 41 minutes. Running takes TIME to improve.

Found this on Facebook. Perfect!

I've been exhausted this week so far and find it very hard to get moving. Sunday was the last time I've run and the last two days have been lazy. Monday I was truly sore and needed to recoup. Yesterday I was in a bad place mentally and just wanted to lay around. Work helped pull me out of the funk and remind myself why I'm doing this insane training and insane race. I was able to help a woman with hydration and fueling advice for her first full marathon. It was nice to have someone to bond with and relate to.

A very smart woman suggested that I list some things that I am grateful for to help me get out of training funks. So here we go!

Gratitude List, Running Edition:

  • In a tad over a year's time, I've improved my 5k time by 7 minutes! I'm thankful for improving this much this fast. I know others have improved faster, and still others have improved at a slower pace. 
  • I've successfully completed 5Ks, 10Ks, a half marathon and all different distances in between.
  • I love all the running blogs available on the internet and following running groups on facebook. It makes me feel less alone.
  • I love the inclusive culture of running. I like to cheer for the runners coming in after me because I was there not too long ago and it feels great to come in to a cheering crowd. 
  • I'm grateful for having a wonderful running mentor, my father, and even though he worries about me training for a marathon so fast, he's nothing but supportive.
  • I'm grateful for being able to afford to purchase running shoes and gear. 
  • I'm mega grateful for my job at the running store so I can geek out with other runners, teach new runners things I wish I had known starting out, help injured runners with great products that have helped me heal from certain injuries, and, of course, afford my habit. ; )
  • I'm grateful for my legs and the ability to run while I can.
  • I'm grateful for the amazing runners high that pops up during a run every now and again
  • I'm grateful for a hot shower after a long run and my foot rubz ball to help work out any aches and pains.
  • And finally, I'm thankful for my amazing husband who is a great support, race photographer, and motivator to get out there and kick some asphalt! He's my rock!
I honestly can say that I feel better after making that list. Sometimes we need to get back to why we started doing what we love and why we love it in order to stay motivated. My challenge to everyone would to make a gratitude list of your own when you're feeling down. It helped me feel better, and I hope it helps someone else. 

Now I'm going for a 7 mile run.

Friday, May 9, 2014

End of Marathon Training Week 1 (almost)

Tomorrow morning I finish up week 1 of marathon training with a 5k.

I'm excited to race again, and I love the 5k distance! Packet pickup is at my work so that makes it extremely convenient. I'm going to try to race in my Brooks PureFlow shoes and see what happens. I feel like they make me faster.
I adore these shoes <3

I'll do a recap of the race tomorrow. I'd post more today but I've been very exhausted. Victory of the week was still getting in training. Time for a nap before work. I think I'm regressing to my preschool self.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Recovery Run and New Socks!

This morning after the monsoon-like weather we've been having the sun made an appearance! Yes! So you know what that means?


Since this was my first run since the half marathon, I decided to warm up with a mile walk. After walking I ran 2 miles for a grand total of 3. Not much but I'm still recovering from the half marathon. Next week starts marathon training, hurrah!

The best part of my run was trying out my new socks! (NOTE: I am not getting paid/free gear by Balega for this short review. Although that would be awesome!)
Yes, I even got this color. I love loud running gear!
I chose to try out Balega Hidden Comfort socks since they always feel so soft and wonderful. The socks fulfilled my expectations of soft and wonderful! Even though the run was short, they were very comfortable and stood up well to the puddles I splashed through. For running in the rain or through puddles, I still prefer my DryMax socks, but these are a great second choice. I'm definitely looking forward to seeing how these perform in the winter, but for now I'm happy to see the sun and enjoy the summer!

Next week proves to be an interesting start to 5 intense months of training. My schedule is 4 days of running, 1 day of strength training, 1 day of yoga, and 1 day of rest. I'm nervous because it is intense, but it'll be worth it when I cross the finish line and then take a long nap!

Here's to working toward another dream and making it a reality!

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Blog title change

The half marathon has changed my attitude toward myself completely.

I decided to change the title of my blog.

"Muffin Top Marathoner" is degrading to myself and other overweight runners like me. Yes, I'm not where I want to be with my body. I'm working to change that, and I am determined to do so before the full marathon. Yes, looking good is a perk of losing the weight, but become a better, faster, endurance runner with less minor injuries is the real goal. 

Instead of calling attention to my physical self with this blog; I want to focus on my achievements as a person. Completing an endurance race, whether a 5k or full marathon is a huge achievement, especially for those, like myself, who didn't think it was possible due to the restriction larger runners put on themselves. 

Just because you are not at your "goal weight" or larger than society thinks you should be DOES NOT mean that you are restricted from taking up a sport you are interested in. Back when I was a bit heavier then I am now I thought I needed to lose weight before starting to run. I'm glad I ignored myself.

I recently had a customer come in and tell me that I shouldn't be running due to my size. I recognize that this body type is not optimal right now, but I am working on it. He continued to make remarks and tear me down for the remainder of my time with him. I told him that I was running a half in April and a full marathon in October. He told me to put off the full and focus on losing the weight first. Also, he told me that I wouldn't be running for long at my current weight and it was a matter of time until a serious injury took me out. I know women and men heavier than me train for and complete MULTIPLE half and full marathons without serious injury. My co-workers were very tempted to tell him to get out, but I just tried to brush it off. Sadly, it has stuck with me. 

Overweight and very skinny people know about their body type and DO NOT need "average sized" people to draw attention to it. I'm overweight and my husband is a very slim build. We both have issues with clothing and with people that like to point out our body types. People tell me to eat less and him to eat more. I've made comments like, "eat a cheeseburger" to a skinny person before and now that I live with one I realize how disrespectful that is. We need to stop focusing on the superficial and look at the overall person. I'm more than just overweight. My husband (and several friends and family members I know) are more than just "a bag of bones" or "just need to eat more." Sadly, in a culture that focuses on the superficial this is hard to overcome.

I'm not going to perpetuate stereotypes and a negative body image anymore. And I'm starting by changing the title of my blog. This is the end of my personal obsession with my weight.

No more.
:) Comic relief. That was a heavy post.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Iron Girl Half Marathon Recap

I'm officially a half marathoner! Woo!

As I am writing this, all I want to do is go back to sleep. I slept 8 hours like a log last night but I'm still exhausted. I managed to do some grocery shopping and meal planning so we have some tasty meals coming up this week. Yay!

Enough of boring stuff, onto the race recap!

Short version for those who just want the pics: I ran. It was a challenge. I came in 18 minutes earlier than expected. I was exhausted but extremely happy. I love my medal. I am proud of myself. The End.

Full story:

I slept much better than I expected the night before the race. I woke up at 4:50 AM and started to get ready. Dad was already up and getting ready too. I let Joe sleep until 5:15. We arrived a little after 6 am for the 7 am start.

After standing at the starting line for a half hour, we were told that something happened with the race course (there was an accident, we passed some car parts on the side of the road during the race) and to disband until they were ready to start. Ugh, I just wanted to start already!! Everyone was filled with nervous anticipation and were frustrated that it was taking so long to start.
And we're off! Finally!!

Finally, at 8 am we were lined up and started the race! I walked until we hit the blue mats and then started my watch and started a nice slow jog. Miles 1-3 went pretty fast and I was feeling great. I left the 13 min/mi pacing group a half mile in and decided to stick with the 12:30 min/mi pacing group since I was feeling good with the pace but it also offered a bit of a challenge. The crowd and volunteers were amazing and the best part of the race. I loved reading the signs and high five-ing some adorable kids that came out to support their moms/aunts/grandmothers. I passed up the first water station at 1.5 miles but took a swig out of my water bottle on my water belt just to get some water.

Soon enough we hit mile 4 and I was feeling great. I took my first GU an hour in (lemon lime sublime, yum!) even though I didn't feel like I needed it. I always take some form of nutrition in at 1 hour and then every 45 minutes after that so I decided to stick to the nutrition schedule I was used to.

Around mile 5.5-6.5 the big hills started. After passing through the halfway point at mile 6.5 we encountered what is so lovingly referred to as the "b*tch hill." Don't get me wrong, it wasn't easy, but I think a few of the hills after that one were worse. There is a moderate incline to a steeper short hill followed by a few steps of flat and then up a moderately steep hill for a much longer distance. And after that it was nothing but up and down until mile 13, but the hills got less intense near the end, or my legs were numb and I just didn't care. Something like that.

During the one hill, I followed this lady with mint green shoes. I just kept chanting to myself "mint shoes, mint shoes, mint shoes" over and over. Then I was thinking about mint ice cream and shamrock shakes, but then I was back to my chant and the hill was over. NEVER stare at the top of a hill you are going up. Looking at how steep the hill is and how far you have to go will just mentally defeat you. So I stared at mint shoes lady for some hills and the pacers for others. I remember looking at one hill thinking, "no way I can run up this the whole way!" I just focused on the next few feet ahead of me and I looked up a few minutes later and realized I was at the top! "Hills aren't that hard," I thought to myself.

I believe it was around the 7 mile water stop I started taking gatorade and water. I was warned by runners and websites that it is not wise to mix gatorade and GU, but since the gatorade was watered down I felt it would be fine. The gatorade was a welcome flavor break and it was lemon lime, my favorite!

I was happy that I had no stomach upset since I usually experience some around 7-7.5 miles. Mile 8 I consumed my second GU (tri berry, also yum!) and all but finished my water bottles on my belt. Mile 9, I started really feeling fatigued. Only 4 more miles to go! We hit a shady section of the course and it was a lot of rolling downhills, a welcome change from the crazy amount of steep hills we just went through. Mile 10 my stomach was not happy. I tried to ignore it and just keep on keeping on. Surely this wasn't the GU+Gatorade no-no stomach upset I was warned about.

Mile 11 I was feeling really sick. I remember thinking, "I'm definitely going to throw up but I just want it to happen already so this pain will go away!" The hills were starting to get to me at this point and I just wanted to be done already! Around 11.5 miles I threw up in my mouth a little bit (sorry TMI!), but I felt substantially better. Just needed that reflux to clear I guess.

Then we rounded on mile 12! I was running with my pacers and they were telling a few of us to kick it into high gear now and it was okay to leave them and finish strong. Around 12.5 miles I thanked them for being awesome pacers and bid them ado as I picked up my pace. There was a substantial incline and I was regretting my decision to go faster, but I couldn't and wouldn't quit now! The final small hill I powered up and was estatic when I rounded the corner to the finishing shute. The last few yards was flat out and I sprinted my booty off passing a bunch of people. I saw the clock at 2:41 and really gave it everything I had and finished strong.

I gave 2 thumbs up to my dad and hubby and dashed across the finish line ecstatic, relieved, and slightly disoriented. I felt bad for the younger guy who gave me my medal since I was all sweaty and then wandered over to the chip removers. I really fastened my chip well on my shoe so it took her some time to get it off. I didn't mind waiting a few extra moments. I just sipped my water bottle and then proceeded to get my big gatorade bottle (lemon lime, of course!) and enjoy the full flavor. Usually I do not like gatorade by itself since it is so sweet/salty, but it tasted like the nectar of the gods, even though I partially regurgitated it 1.5 miles ago. My friend from work was running with her friends but hadn't finished yet, so we went to the food tent. I got some cookies and fruit salad and sat and stretched on some grass for a bit as I ate (and husband stole a cookie).
Yes, yes it does.

After the mini feast we went and took a bunch of photos near the finish line.
Me and Dad :) He ran the family 5K because guys were allowed in that race. 
Me and hubby <3

My coworker came in with her friends around 3 hours 30 minutes and then it was off for brunch and mimosas. The food was great, but the service was terrible. Since we were a group of over 8 people, gratuity was already included and you can tell that waiter was not concerned about trying to do a good job at all. We had to get his attention to order, get his attention for drink refills, get his attention to get the checks, and then one of the girls took all of our bills to him so we could get out of there. Essentially the only thing we didn't do was get our own food. I wish that tip wasn't included because he did not deserve a dime. But my pancakes were good (banana pancakes!) so the best part was the food and the company. Those of us who ran crooned over our medals and shared our experiences. My dad and husband were sort of odd balls but fit in with the group well as my dad shared his running pedigree and hubby discussed possible plans to run a 5k in August.
One of my many favorite female characters on GoT!

The remainder of the night was spent with some Aleve and a lot of stretching. And then it was time for Game of Thrones!! We were debating watching it tomorrow, but ended up giving in. It was a rather good episode and I was glad we stayed up and watched it. I'm thinking of watching it over again since I was tired and still kind of out of it.

Perfect end to an awesome day! Next week is the start of marathon training!