Monday, December 19, 2011

Day 76: 2011 San Diego SGK 3-Day recap (Day 3)

Day 3! It was finally here! I woke up not-bright and early (4:30 am early), and walked over to the dining tent to eat. I'd pulled almost everything out of the tent already (including my sneakers!) and left it out while we ate.

Then, when we were sitting in the dining tent I heard the sound I'd been dreading hearing all weekend. Rain drops. My heart sank. And then I remembered my shoes. Sitting outside the tent, getting wet. I jumped up, hobbled back to the tent (keep in mind I hadn't had my blisters popped yet so was walking tenderly). Thankfully the thick plastic tarps that made up the dining tent roof amplified the rain, making it sound much worse than it was. My shoes were barely damp, and the rain let up, at least for the time being.

We packed up the rest of our gear and handed it off to a Gear and Tent crew member, then went to medical for one last round of physical therapy and a blister session. I had about half a dozen blisters lanced and wrapped. The medic I had that morning cautioned me that they would just fill up again (which I knew. Come on lady, I am a VETERAN 3-DAY WALKER HERE). I told her that was fine, just wrap them as tight as she could so I could get my foot in my shoe.

We lined up to get scanned out. The atmosphere was already a party. We were dancing in line, laughing, taking picture after picture and ready to kill the last leg of it. The physical therapist I had Sunday morning sucked. I would like to have nothing but good things to say about everyone on the event, but she was wretched. I told her my issue - 2 different leg lengths, the short one was really sore, and that I needed it massaged with bio-freeze for at least 10 minutes because I couldn't get in a good enough position to really work the knot out of it myself. She patted some bio-freeze on, half-assedly wrapped my calf with an ace bandage and sent me on my way. While we were still INSIDE CAMP the wrap came loose. After taking this picture I just took it off. I am still angry at that PT. Don't volunteer for this event, especially as a PT unless you're willing to work with people who are exhausted, sore and desperately trying to finish strong. Don't half-ass your job.

Anyway. On our way out of camp one of the SJPD officers stopped me, told me that he was so inspired by the way I pushed to get up that hill on day 2 and gave me a bracelet. He made me cry, and I am bummed I didn't take a picture with him. I hate that the SJPD doesn't have the funding to allow the San Jose cops to come down again next year. I'm so thankful Jeff and I are doing San Francisco next year and that the San Jose cops will be there. The San Diego cops are great too, but they're quite a bit more Stiff-Upper-Lippy than SJ. Regardless, I know I speak for many members of the 3-Day community when I say that the support of the police departments is amazing. These men and women are with us every step of the way, it's just as personal for them as it is for us, and they are one of the highlights of the event.

I was handed the "My Hero" flag before we got too far out of camp. I have been dying to be a flag-bearer. It is certainly no secret! I'm hoping to participate in opening and closing ceremonies in San Francisco next year carrying the "My Grandmother" flag. So getting to carry a flag, even just for a couple miles was a huge honor. Shortly after I took up the flag San Diego threw us a tiny loop and it started to rain again. Ponchos came out of bags for the first time all weekend, but smiles never wavered!  It rained for a mile or so, more drizzle than actual rain, then ponchos came off. I didn't want to throw it away and risk ACTUAL rain starting again, so we tucked them onto the straps of our CamelBaks.

My leg was giving me hell. We got to pit stop 2 and I went straight to medical where an AMAZING physical therapist worked on me for half an hour -- well after the "official" closing of the pit. She used The Stick on me and it was like hearing a choir of angels sing. I also had 1000 milligrams of Vicodin on board (thanks Mom!), and had my back iced and wrapped. The bad part of being at medical so long? The caboose showed up. The caboose is a 3-Day staff member who rides behind all the walkers. So when he gets to a pit or lunch he closes it up. It's for walker safety and to keep things on schedule. The caboose will also sweep you if you're straggling. So Janae and I were officially last walkers, and pretty early in the days. She was sore and in pain, I was fighting tears because the pain in my leg was excruciating. The caboose followed us for about a mile, keeping quiet. Then he started talking to me -- asked me about my 3-Day history, told me about his, asked how much money I'd raised. Then he told me "you've already done the important part. Why don't you girls sweep a few miles? It'll make the rest of your day better, and you'll finish strong."

Janae was about 30 yards ahead of me, and I didn't want to scream at her so I texted her (and I quote) "fuck it, let's sweep to pit 3." (yes, yes, texting on the route is forbidden blah blah) Janae heard her phone, read the text and turned around and gave me two thumbs up. We continued down the route about a quarter mile to where there was pit access and waited with a handful of other walkers for the next sweep van. We swept 3.5 miles to pit stop 3, passing the Day 3 hill on Juan Street (I have not conquered that beast yet, 2012 I'm coming for you!). It was far and away the best decision I made all weekend. We hopped out of the van, went to medical so Janae could have a blister looked at and so I could put a bag of ice on each ankle, knee and 2 on my back. After 20 minutes of laying around I noticed that my phone was missing. Never fear on the 3-Day though. I flagged down a crew captain and asked if they would radio sweep van H (I happened to notice the sticker when we were in it) to let them know I'd left my phone in the sweep van, and that it had a return address label stuck on it with my info. Only in 3-Dayville can you lose your phone and have it returned to you 20 minutes later.

When I'd packed my stuff up Sunday morning I hooked my flip flops to my camelbak, knowing I'd want to change into them at closing. While we were at the pit stop I changed my socks and left my shoes off for a few minutes. 53 miles of walking in 3 days was not kind to them. My feet (and the blisters attached to them) swelled up immediately. I think I mentioned that I switched to toe socks this year, and the prospect of working my swollen, blistered feet back into shoes was not appealing. I checked my route card and saw that we only had 5 miles to go from that pit. Then I told Janae I was finishing the walk in my flip-flops. Her feet were also swollen, so she cut the pinkies out of her shoes. These changes made such a difference! We practically skipped out of the pit stop!

The last 5 miles of the walk are electric. Everyone is giddy, there is a ton of cheer traffic and a lot of walker stalkers who are happy to give out "adult blister healers." Yes, there is a ton of booze on the route. Especially day 3. Cheers! That smile on my face is the most pain-free smile I'd rocked all weekend. Now that my feet were free of the nylon prison of my shoes I felt so good, and so did my blisters (despite the fact that now that they weren't constricted the were able to swell like crazy -- and I actually had one even pop on it's own while I was walking. Not my favorite feeling, but still relief!). We were super close to holding, and San Diego really goes all out for us. The community support is a huge part of the 3-Day. If you're just walking all day without anyone cheering you on it feels like 600 miles, not 60. We were about a half mile away from the lunch spot for day 3 when we passed a Chipotle. Somehow a hot burrito sounded better than a cold sandwich, so we elected to duck in and sit on a seat, not the ground while we ate. We were not the only walkers who made that decision! :) Who doesn't love Chipotle?

I am lucky to have such a huge pink family. I'd tweeted a couple times over the weekend that I needed support and encouragement, and Team Twitter came through in the best way! Every time I looked at my phone at a pit stop I was greeted with tons of texts filled with support and love. It made every step a little easier!

We finally wound our way into downtown, and the streets were now LINED with pink people. The last mile or so before holding is a NON-STOP cheering station. Hugs from strangers? Check. Five Hour Energy booth, handing out free samples? Check. People high-fiving you like it is their job? Double check. Janae and I were laughing giddily the whole time. I am so happy to have shared this experience with someone I love so much. I've been talking about it for years and having somebody to share it with made it so much better. Every 3-Day experience this year was phenomenal. Volunteering with my best friend who just happens to be my boyfriend in San Francisco was awesome. I made friends I will have for LIFE being a part of Team Twitter ATL and walking San Diego this year was beyond amazing. It was my best 3-Day year yet.

We finally (finally!) got to holding. I thought I would be in tears (given that it was the theme of my weekend!) but I was SO happy and proud of myself for doing ALL BUT 3.5 MILES OF THE WALK! that I just grinned non-stop.

I was so happy that I managed to find Jim and get a picture with him! Saying he was a highlight of the walks this year would be an understatement. I will link to Jim's Facebook and website later so you can read about his 3-Day story, it's an amazing one! He is a testament to the human spirit and to the 3-Day spirit.

3-Days, 60 miles and memories that will last a lifetime! We buzzed through holding, got our victory t-shirts and took a few pictures before closing ceremonies started.

It started to drizzle as we walked into closing, and as our survivors walked in darkness was falling. The rain, cold and twilight couldn't keep us quiet. Walkers, crew, staff and spectators alike cheered like our lives depended on it for our 533 survivors who participated (either as walkers or crew members). We also raised our shoes in their honor, one of my favorite 3-Day traditions. It's such a beautiful moment.

I listened to Sheri for the last time that year, she shared our fundraising numbers with us -- together the 4175 walkers and crew in San Diego raised 9.2 million dollars. The 2011 3-Day series had over 34,000 participants who raised a total of 74.5 million dollars for breast cancer research, treatment, prevention and eventual eradication. Saying I am honored to be a part of it is such an understatement. I am indebted to this event, and this community. It introduced me to the version of myself that I want to be -- am capable of becoming. And really, that's what this blog is all about.

Thank you for coming along with me on this extraordinary journey. It's a life-changer. :) I'll be back tomorrow with my last 3-Day recap for 2011 -- Day 4 and Beyond, AKA the post-3-Day Hangover.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Day 75: Sunday recap

It's been so long since I've written one of these that I forgot how. Lame.

Anyway. I am giving myself half a pass for the remainder of 2011. No, I will not sit on my ass the next 13 days. I will work out, even if it's just going for a long walk. I'm hitting Zumba tomorrow (and hopefully Wednesday or Thursday too).

And I'm keeping a better eye on what I eat. Not due to my vanity or desire to be thin but because of my desire to not feel like complete shit. I probably need to give up the ghost and realize that I have way more food issues than I like to admit to. Clearly there is the classic overweight person "addiction" to food, but I also have internal food issues, like eating too much grease or dairy or sugar or whatever makes me want to die for hours on end/spend far too much time in the smallest room of the house.

After eating pizza one day last week and paying for it all day I decided to just suck it up, bake some chicken and cook rice and steamed veggies. I lived on that for 2 days and was so much happier for it. I have always LOVED vegetables so it's not a punishment for me like it is for my boyfriend, and the chicken was perfectly tasty thanks to my good friend garlic salt.

So I've let myself "half" off the hook for the next two weeks. Because January 2-29 THIS is happening. No chocolate. No candy. No biscuits or cookies. No cake, donuts, or muffins. No pastries. No white bread. No chips. No fast food. No nutella, peanut butter or other naughty spreads. No ice cream. With my personal additions of no soda, no white rice (brown is okay), no "regular" pasta (again, whole wheat would be okay).

I need a holiday detox, and January seems like the perfect time to do it. That way Jeff and I can still celebrate our birthdays to the fullest extent (mine is February 4 and his is two days later) and hopefully I'll have less inches to show for it.

In a new feature of Sunday recaps, let's talk job searching! I got my license last month, then went to San Diego, so only started heavily job hunting a few weeks ago. I have sent out (no joke) 70+ resumes. I have 25 salons on my "to call" list. I've had one interview (that I didn't expect or frankly want a job offer from, but I did want the experience and for her to answer questions for me), one pre-interview at THE DREAM salon yesterday and I have an interview Wednesday at 1:00 at a third salon. I'm after something so particular -- a salon with a dedicated assistant program, a great location, and a product line that I believe in. DREAM salon had all that and I'm really hoping to get a call back for a working interview.

Job searching is hard. And sometimes depressing. And I often wonder (especially in such a looks driven industry) if I'm getting written off before I open my mouth because I'm overweight. It sucks. This is going to sound vain but whatever, I'm pretty. I've never thought otherwise. Sure I have ugly DAYS but overall, I'm pretty. I'm well dressed, my hair looks great and I'm confident. But I know that there is so much fat-phobia in the world and that salon owners can be extremely superficial. It makes me want to be able to change overnight and walk back into salons and be like "BIG MISTAKE. HUGE" a la Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. But alas, I am a fatty, not a prostitute with a heart of gold, so I can't just throw on some designer clothing and magically hide what I am. It takes work to change so fundamentally.

2012 is going to be THE year of hard work.

I hope you're enjoying my 3-Day recaps as much as I'm enjoying reliving that weekend! I'll be posting Day 3 tomorrow and Day 4/Post 3-Day Hangover notes soon after. And I'll be back with a Sunday recap on Christmas, I guess!

Love to you and yours from me!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Day 72: 2011 San Diego SGK 3-Day recap (Day 2)

Somehow,  despite not going to bed until after 10:30 Friday night I managed to pop up wide awake at 4:45! What even. Happily that was 5 minutes before my alarm was set to go off. We ate and stopped by medical (and ran into my friend Lisa on the way! I was so happy to get to have breakfast with her). My toe socks were an amazing investment. No, I did not enjoy spending $13 PER PAIR on socks but it was well worth it. I'm really prone to blisters, and as any 3-Day walker knows, blisters are a result of friction. Toe socks BY DEFINITION eliminate friction between your toes. However I still had some blisters on my heels that needed attention at medical. I think next year I will be switching to walking sandals for that purpose. I had blisters lanced and drained on my left foot and a chain of second skin wrapped around my right heel.

We lined up with the masses to get out of camp and then after being scanned out were back on our way! And once again I am envious of those people who wind up at the very front of the pack. You just know they get up at like 3:30 and don't have blisters or any pain so don't need to go to medical, lol. They just eat and go sit at the front of the line to get scanned out. I'm also half convinced their legs are 14 feet long and they take huge strides to get back to camp at like 2 in the afternoon. Luckily we were pretty middle of the pack. I felt good but not great and knew it might be a loooong 20 miles.

After the skies had stayed gray and ominous all day on Friday it was a hugely welcome sight to see the sun shining on us pretty much all day Saturday! In 2010 San Diego was MISERABLE. It rained in a way I can only refer to as "biblically." If you know me AT ALL you know how important this cause is to me. I only started in 2009, but luckily it was beautiful and sunny and glorious that whole time. If 2010 had been my first walk I would have had to think about coming back a lot more. Coming back into camp on Day 2 of 2010 I looked more like I'd swam the last 3 miles and found my tent ON IT'S SIDE, with pretty much everything inside it soaking wet. I wrapped my pillow in a hefty bag, avoided the wet quadrant of my blanket and basically froze trying to sleep that night. It was bad. So this? This was a glorious sight. I swear you could almost hear the collective sigh of relief!

The first leg of Day 2 took us past the across the bay neighbors that I mentioned last night -- Sea World! Janae and I made a couple of new friends (I am also convinced those people who finish very early in the day don't stop to take pictures with everyone/thing along the route -- I feel sorry for those people!). Sea World was less that 5 miles into Day 2 and I was already starting to feel "it" in my shorter leg, but as I kept telling myself, I was just sore. I knew nothing was seriously wrong with me and I would be fine, so I kept going. I really, really had the goal of all 60 miles in my head. I wanted it. I watched some of my best friends do it the month before, including my friend Allie of So I Had Cancer, Now What?. I wanted to do all 60 for me, for Allie (because my GOD girl has been through so much more than walking 60 miles), for my nana. . . but mostly for me.

Every day (at least on the San Diego route) there is a pretty good hill. Torrey Pines is obviously my everest, but the hill on Day 2 is pretty good too. Not as steep, but longer. We made our way up the hill as San Diego and San Jose PD rode their bikes alongside us (their legs must have been killing them by the end too!). I know that I'm a lucky fatty, I don't have anything seriously wrong with me health wise, but like I said about Torrey Pines it sucks to haul extra you up a hill. I get really ferklempt when they do the "putting the weight back on" challenge on The Biggest Loser because the contestants are always amazed they were carrying all that extra around and I totally feel that way. I know that when I lose weight I feel better and it is less work to just EXIST. I can't wait to feel a noticeable change in that way. Anyway, we got through that hill and were rewarded with some gorgeous views like this one. Oh, no big deal, just the ocean looking all gorgeous and inviting. ;)

After the Day 2 hill my leg was really giving me trouble. There is a noticeable discrepancy in the lengths of my legs. Close to an inch. It's a lingering side effect from a surgery I had when I was 11. Most people never notice it, but I always stand with my right leg to the side and slightly bent at the knee to balance myself out. However when I have on Uggs or Creepers (yes yes I used to be all up in the punk scene, lol!) if I take off my left shoe and leave the right one on I can swing my left leg pretty freely and it won't touch the ground (I'm a fun party trick). This NEVER really bothers me until I'm at the 3-Day. Basically I never put my body through the same kinds of physical rigors that I do when I'm walking 20+ miles a day. We got into Pit stop 2 a few minutes before it was scheduled to close and I hobbled to medical where a glorious physical therapist gave me a 10 minute massage with BioFreeze (liquid gold). I was still hurting but felt WORLDS better than I had before.

Janae was in a bit of pain too, but we egged each other on, saying "let's just get to the next pit stop." Lunch was really late on Day 2, around 14 miles in. So when we came to the top of a small incline and saw the swarms of people still at lunch we knew we'd be okay. We grabbed our food and sat down to eat. Less than five minutes later a member of lunch crew walked up to us and said "I'm a massage therapist, do you want a 2 minute shoulder massage?" Well yes, yes I did. It felt so great. We finished eating, changed our socks and went back on our way. Less than 6 miles to go back to camp! And if you're curious what direction we needed to turn, well. . .

Those 6 miles sucked. I was so sore. Day 2 is the hardest day because you don't have the exhilaration of Days 1 and 3. You're tired. You've put your body through it's paces and know you'll be doing it again the next day. Janae's pains were lessened by walking a little quicker than me, so she was a little bit ahead of me while I was feeling every step. I spent a good portion of those last 6 miles talking with Jesus. And my grandma. And thinking about my survivor sister Allie. The last mile and a half to camp there is no sweep access, so you make that decision and are stuck with it. I didn't hesitate when I saw the sign, but it was purely pride that decided it for me. I was on the verge of (okay, past the verge of) tears. I was mentally, physically and emotionally drained. I was cursing my sweet boyfriend for not being available and in my tent to hug me while I cried out everything I was feeling, I was pissed off at my stupid legs for being different lengths, I was pissed off at myself for not losing more weight before this walk because I KNOW I'd feel better with less of me. . . everything was coming to a head. One of the San Jose bike cops was riding alongside me. I was in the last handful of walkers. She told me that she knew I was in physical pain. It was obvious (limping is sexy). But then she told me that the last walker (who was only a quarter mile behind me) was walking for her sister and her mom. Both of whom were battling breast cancer. Earlier that day she'd gotten the call that her mom had died. The police officer looked at me and said "honey, I know you're hurting, but that poor girl is drowning in hurt." Really puts it in perspective, huh?

I kept crying (duh. You must know by now that this is a pattern). But it wasn't for me, it was for her. I can't imagine what she was feeling. So I sucked it up for the last half mile and got home! I couldn't believe that I'd walked ALL of another day. Over 40 miles down. I was SO damn proud. We took our picture by the 40 mile sign (and I like that you can just TELL from my grimace that I'm hurting!). The sign is pretty close to the entrance of camp. As we walked back towards the dining tent Janae and I both were on our phones with our moms. I called my mom to cry. I freaked her out quite a bit, even though I prefaced it all with "after I take a shower and eat I'll feel better but [insert all the tears]." I must have been more of a mess than I thought because she insisted I call her again AFTER the shower and getting to eat. I really did feel like a new person after that. I called her and was fine.

In the dining tent that night we heard from Jim Hillmann. I first met Jim last year in San Diego when he told me he was walking all 14 events in 2011. I was flummoxed. That was a commitment. He'd have to raise over $30,000. He'd have to fly to 13 events (San Francisco being his "home" event). But in true 3-Day fashion, Jim did it. He raised all the money, got to all the events and touched over 40,000 lives in 2011. He is a remarkable representative of the 3-Day. An ordinary person who decides they want to do something extraordinary, then doing it. I love Jim. I've gotten to see him a handful of times this year, and hearing about his journey always brings a smile to my face. When I stop and think about all the people that I wouldn't know without this event, it takes my breath away. Saying my life is better because of the 3-Day is a huge understatement. It defines me, and what a definition.

While I was in the shower truck earlier one of the bandaids I had on my heel flopped off and I was greeted with this sight. Yes, I am fairly certain that blister could support it's own zip code, and yes, my feet were crazy swollen. After we ate and listened to Jim's speech I laughed and told Janae I wanted to go to medical so they could look at this bad boy for me (even though I was pretty sure they'd tell me to come back in the morning for blisters), plus I needed to see a physical therapist again. Sure enough, after a PT massaged my leg for almost half an hour in the sports medicine tent I walked over to the blister tent and was told to return in the morning. Most of you are probably cringing at the size of these, but as long as they're not blisters in between my toes I can handle blisters. Lance them, wrap them tight and I'm set. So after getting turned away from blisters I went back to the tent, packed as much as I could so I wouldn't have to worry about as much of it Sunday morning and crawled into bed, cautiously optimistic about doing all of Day 3.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Day 70: 2011 San Diego SGK 3-Day recap (Day 1)

(I was planning on putting Day 1 and Day 2 together into one post but once I got started writing this it became QUITE apparent that wasn't going to work! So here's day 1)

Finally after months of preparation we were finally there! My alarm went off at 4AM, we took quick showers and drove the 20 minutes to Del Mar Racetrack. We parked the car in long-term parking and took the "back way" into opening. That was a new experience even for me! I've always come in the front, but I have to say, long-term parking wasn't bad at all. I'd do it again in a heartbeat. We quickly headed over to the booth, where Janae and I both picked up one of these seamless head wraps (or buffs, as I'm told they're also called). Great purchase. Keeps your hair out of your eyes and ears warm during the cold early part of the day. I've been meaning to buy one the past couple years.

We waited in line what felt like FOREVER to take out picture at the opening ceremonies sign (yes, Janae is one of those impossibly beautiful girls who doesn't realize how gorgeous she is and therefore isn't a bitch about it (if I didn't love her I'd have to hate her) and I am a blob, lol). I don't know exactly time I'd have to get up and get to opening to get to do EVERYTHING and still get in a great position to get on the route early. Maybe next year we'll figure it out.

Then we filled out our "my personal goal for this weekend is..." stickers. Mine was to try my damnedest to walk all 60 miles. I'd never done even all of one single day before, and after being wildly inspired by one of my best friends (Allie, a 32 year old survivor) who walked EVERY STEP in Atlanta and gave herself stress fractures doing it I was determined to do as much as I could. I know it's not about doing all 60 miles. But still part of me wanted desperately to do all of one.

Despite waiting in lines at the booth and at the opening ceremonies sign AND the goal board we still got pretty close to the stage once they opened the gates and let us in the corral. I may have done some fast moving, lol. Here's a 3-Day pro tip: You want to be as close as you can to the front of the stage and as close to the middle as possible. I made that mistake my first year and have been trying not to every year since. 2012 I will get it right! The further back you are in the pack the harder it is to break free and go at your own pace.

We did some group stretching, heard from the local Komen affiliate and from the current 3-Day National Spokesperson, Dr. Sheri Phillips. I cried. I always cry at Opening. This year especially. I've been an online ambassador for the 3-Day this year, and between that and fundraising and this blog I've been thinking about my grandmother a lot. A whole lot. I miss her. In fact, this past Monday marked the 21 year anniversary of her death. My grandmother has been gone for three quarters of my life. What a sad number. Anyway. The sun wasn't quite out yet (and actually wasn't quite out all day on Day 1), but I still had my sunglasses on. No need for 3600 people to see me crying that early.

Then, we were off. We got through Pit Stop 1 pretty quickly, but since we were still in the middle of the pack we were stuck behind a lot of people. Pit Stop 2 is at the base of Torrey Pines State Reserve. Torrey Pines is my arch-nemesis. I walked it in 2009 because I didn't know any better. It killed my back for the rest of the day. I skipped it in 2010 because I had convinced myself I needed to. I decided 2011 was the year of NO EXCUSES. My feet felt great (thank you, toe socks and gold-bond foot powder!). We trucked up the hill.

Since this is a weight loss/fitness/full disclosure blog I'll be honest. It sucked. It sucked hauling my ass and all my extra ass up that hill, but I dug deep with every step and when we got to the top it was SWEET. RELIEF. All of this before the 8 mile mark. Other than being schwetty we were good after conquering the hill (MOUNTAIN). It doesn't hurt to have hot bike cops cheering you on, just saying.

Four miles later we headed into lunch -- the sign on Janae's CamelBak said "I am still _____ short but I'm waking because I can't walk away. Please help me make minimum!" We changed the number with a dry-erase marker as it went down. Janae was very, very short of her minimum and by the end of the weekend we were less than $200 away from it. Other walkers and spectators donated to us all weekend. Janae was really moved by it, she welled up any time anyone handed her cash or a check. The kindness displayed at the 3-Day is a remarkable testament to what's possible in the world. It's also why a 3-Day Hangover is the worst -- you're tired and all but what really sucks is that you've spent between 3 and 5 days in a pink bubble of kindness. The real world is not quite the same.

Lunch was at mile 11 on Day 1, from there we walked past the ocean (some of my favorite views!) and through business-y parts of town. The only thing that sucks about the San Diego walk is that it's so late in the year that the darkness really creeps up if you're a slower walker. Janae and I finished when it was pretty dark. But I'm SO PROUD of the fact that we did an entire day! Every single step, didn't look at a sweep van and didn't even think about it. We were exhausted, sweaty, gross rockstars.

We went to find our gear and had our tent set up by some fabulous girl scouts (thank you!), then walked over to the huge dining tent and went beast mode on our dinner. After 20.5 miles you are FAMISHED. Some of the sweet youth volunteers even offered to walk our phones over to the charging station and plugged them in for us. After eating we wandered over to 3-Day main street where we picked up our mail (I was hugely blessed with almost 2 dozen letters and cards from my friends and family and my 3-Day tweeps!) and legacy pins (3-Dayers LOVE flair) and picked up things we "needed" from the booth (toe socks and a t-shirt for me, lots more for Janae!).

We then went over to the shower trucks and took The Best Shower of My Life, swung by the medical tent to have blisters checked out (and I got my short leg worked on by a Physical Therapist -- it's really hard to have two different length legs), then back to the dining tent to grab our phones. My phone's battery sucks so I still needed to let it charge as long as possible, but Janae's was already fully charged. She went to bed and I stayed up past the "official" lights out talking with some volunteers and was rewarded with both a fully charged phone AND a fireworks show! Camp is on Mission Bay -- our across the bay neighbors are this little start up called SEA WORLD. Around 10:00 the sky lit up. What an amazing treat. Half an hour later I crawled into bed with a smile on my face.

Talk about a perfect day in a perfect place.

Day 70: Tues(not Sun)day recap


That was the sound of me falling so far off the wagon. I'm not pulling punches, I've been living it up Holiday Style.

Cookies? SURE.

Delicious, creamy baked mac and cheese? NO PROBLEM.

Working out? Less than five times since Thanksgiving.

I have nothing good to say about it except that my attitude about it is great. Tomorrow is another day. TODAY is another day. My body is reminding me that I can't really eat all the crap I want to without suffering (lactose intolerance is a bitch). I need to get back to eating turkey burgers and leaving the creamy sauces out of my life.

So I am. Starting today.

No screen cap of workouts scheduled today, because I need to take an hour or so and move my workouts around in iCal so I can get back on track. In the mean time, it's back to the shake weight and walking 2-3 miles a day, then back on the scheduled workouts and Zumba starting on Monday.

Life has ups and downs, but thanks to one of my favorite people I'm starting to remember that I have to occasionally put myself first.

I'll be back later tonight or tomorrow with my second 3-Day recap post. After I go for a little walk.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Day 66: the shame of not posting

I'll start this post off by saying it will not be an abbreviated Sunday recap, despite the fact that I skipped 3 of them. I will be posting a Sunday recap this Sunday as scheduled.

What I AM going to talk about is my 2011 San Diego 3-Day experience! I'm breaking this post up into 5 posts (Day 0, Days 1-3 (the actual event), and Day 4 & beyond). I'll be posting Day 0 today, Days 1 and 2 tomorrow and Days 3 and 4 Monday or Tuesday.

Here we go!

After tons of fundraising, last minute trips to Target and packing (and packing and packing and packing) Janae and I left town around 10AM on Thursday November 17. We made great time until we hit LA traffic, then stalled out completely. Between LA traffic and San Diego rush hour we sat for about 4 hours.

However we finally got to my cousin's house in San Diego around 7 PM. I haven't seen this particular cousin in over 15 years -- she moved back to Arkansas when I was still really young. I met her kids for the first time and her husband. It was really wonderful to catch up with her and so amazingly kind of them to let us crash with her Thursday night.

After a great homemade dinner we sorted out our stuff and rearranged what was coming with us (like my camel-bak -- I made ribbons with the names of my donors, survivors and in memory that I carried with me every step of the way, because I couldn't have done it without them) to the 3-Day and what would be staying in the car at long-term parking, got snuggled in around 10:00 and tried to get to sleep! No matter how many years it's been I still wind up feeling like it's Christmas eve -- I never think I'll be able to fall asleep and then before I know it I'm out.

I know this post is kinda short, but I'll see you tomorrow with Day 1 and Day 2! And Sunday with my Sunday recap and regularly scheduled #hotby30 posts. :)