Monday, March 23, 2009

weekend photos and misc thoughts

I've got a few things floating around my head that I keep forgetting to mention so I'm cramming a bunch of unrelated stuff into this post! If you'd like to skip ahead to the good part, go right ahead.. I've posted photos from our trip out to the coast at the end. :)

* First, the training update from today:
Monday: run
9.0 miles/1:17:42/8:38 average pace
Marine Drive
(I swear all of my runs lately have been at this exact pace!)

* I am super excited about the upcoming Race for the Roses Half Marathon on April 5th. I'm determined to set a PR and I know I can do it! Zach and I drove the course the other day and I was happy to see it's mostly flat. There's a gradual climb that lasts maybe 1-1.5 miles in the first part of the race but it's not that bad. The rest of the course is gently downhill or flat. There are two bridge crossings, one at the beginning and one at the end, but I'm just going to forget about them.

* Deana is running the 5k at Race for the Roses and I'm very happy to report that she has totally been training! She's been running about 2 miles twice a week even though I haven't been able to run with her at all. Hopefully we'll be able to get together this Wednesday. I'm very proud of her for sticking to it! She also bikes to work a few miles each day so she's in good shape and with the training I have no doubt she'll post a respectable time for the 5k.

* For Biggest Loser fans, I meant to mention the Half Marathon the contestants ran in the last episode. I was so excited and proud of the Losers for doing it. Almost all of them finished and Tara won the challenge by finishing it in an impressive 2:24. I love Tara!! (And hate Helen for choosing Tara to penalize with her Penalty Cookie!) I hope Tara wins the competition. I was sad to see Kathy go home. I can't wait to watch this week's episode. Such a great show!

* A couple of weeks ago, when Zach's parents were in town, we all went to see Brett Dennen at the Crystal Ballroom. I didn't really know who he was before but recognized some of the tunes and am now totally a fan. The opening act was Angus and Julia Stone who were amazing. I should go to more concerts.

* Not much else to report I guess. I'm still unemployed, in case you were wondering. Obviously I will make a huge deal about getting a job if it ever happens. The job market is horrible but I'm still looking and being patient and staying positive. We're fine financially (esp. with recent tax refunds) and I'm still getting unemployment checks so I'm not stressed out about that at all. It's more of a boredom issue... I go back and forth between desperately wanting something to fill the hours and thinking I could get used to this. Anyway, I am thinking of finding a new volunteer opportunity to add to the Library gig to keep me busy. If no one will pay me to work I'm going to find some deserving organization where I can work for free. To summarize, I'm very thankful we're not worse off and I am trying to make the most of the situation.

* Picture time! I love Oregon.

Spring working its way into Portland:

Crossed several bridges on our way to the coast:

Old cannery on the Columbia:
Some huge cargo ships dwarfed in the Columbia:

Lightship outside the Maritime Museum in Astoria:

The enormous and beautiful Astoria-Megler Bridge that spans the mouth of the Columbia:

Fort Stevens State Park, including wreckage from the Peter Iredale, a ship that ran aground here in 1906:

Blizzard on Hwy 26 in the Coast Range on our way home:
That is all. Thanks for reading! Until next time.


Sarah said...

1) Tara wins everything! If she doesn't win the whole show I'll die of a heart attack!

2) Brett Dennen is my soulmate. I didn't see him at the Crystal because I don't love that place - but I've seen him a couple times and I adore him! I'm glad you went!

kristen said...

I just started watching BL a couple of weeks ago (after reading all about it in the blogs I finally watched). I was so pissed about the cookie too. As if she would actually win by eating that cookie. Totally weak! btw, I couldn't belive Tara posted a better HM time than I did by about a minute. I better get my ass in gear;D

I love Oregon too! The PNW is so beautifull. Great pics!

Chloe said...

That is awesome voluntering! It's such a great feeling knowing that you are helping out people who appreciate it so much :)

That is awesome that your friend is still running!

Oh man - could you imagine running a whole 1/2 marathon on an indoor track? Holy cow! I would go crazy! Congrats to the BL'ers!!

KK said...

Hey Jen,
I totally feel for you about the unemployment thing: I admire you for how you've dealt with it and you have stayed so positive throughout and the whole volunteering thing puts you on an eschelon way above the rest of humanity. Anyway, I know the right thing will eventually come along for you and I totally admire your patience and positive outlook in the meantime.

Also, I'll be rooting for you in your half on April 5th. I know the last couple od races haven't gone the way you wanted them to, but that just means that whenn you do finally dial it in that you will come up BIG.

Great pix, crazy blizzard!!!

Kelly said...

Glad you made it home okay. Those Portlanders do not know how to drive in the snow.

I like Tara as well, but I want to do at least a 2:24 in my half now. I bet she'll still beat me!

Ewen said...

Aussie BL "couples" doesn't sound nearly as exciting.

You mean "still a triathlete..." Something will turn up. Didn't the stock market just make the biggest one day gain since 1938?

Great photos. I remember having a superb Moose Drool at a restaurant in Astoria - we stayed in a motel up on the hill overlooking the Columbia.

kelsalynn said...

I love Tara too! I couldn't believe they expected all of them to run a half marathon... I'm sure they took necessary safety percautions, but that's still pretty crazy if you ask me.

What is your goal time for the half? You want to set a PR, but I don't know what your current PR is. I'm doing a half marathon on April 5th too!!!

Anonymous said...

Great pictures. You will definitely PR on April 5th, you are running so strong. I'll have to check out Brett Dennen and Angus and Julia Stone.

The job market is tough right now, just keep trying.

Sun Runner said...

What great pictures! Where you live is so pretty.

I'm running a half marathon on April 5, too! The Martian Half Marathon in Dearborn, Michigan. My goal is to break 1:50 this time!

Good luck!! Oh yeah, next week i decided to do a "mini taper" for the half marathon. Even thogh it's just an extended training run (I was supposed to run 12 miles that day anyway) I still want to do well!

Gotta Run said...

TARA does rock!! I can not imagine ever running a half marathon on a track. That is insane.

Your training sounds great and with your pace I have no question that you will nail your pr!!

Thanks for the pictures. Spring is in the air and I LOVE IT!

Kim said...

i totally feel a PR in your future - your workouts have been awesome and you are definitely improving!!!

portland looks gorgeous! wish boston had that spring-like feel to it!

aron said...

looove all the pics :)

PR on April 5th!!! its definitely your race :)

Alisa said...

I'm glad to hear that the Race for the Roses course is mostly flat---YAY!!!!

Astoria is such a weird little town. Did you guys go find the Goonies house? Or go to the Astoria column? From the column you get really nice views.

Beth said...

I love all the adventuring and exploring you do. You are really taking advantage of what Oregon has to offer.

Chad in the AZ Desert said...

I think you have a great shot at that half PR. I'm rooting for you!

I'll be watching Biggest Loser tonight for sure.

Love the pictures.

P.O.M. said...

You guys are so adorable!

You will totally PR the next half!

Susan said...

Your pictures make me consider moving to Oregon...except for the super snowy ones!

I'm definitely feeling you on the job hunt, especially when people make comments about the nursing shortage! I hope you find something soon...which is probably when you'll wish you're still unemployed! :) I suppose paychecks are nice, however.

Amy said...

Great post and pictures. Portland is so beautiful....I wish we visited for longer.

You are going to rock that 1/2!!!!!!

Cindy said...

i like watching the hm episode too! why did tara do it on the track? did they draw straws for location? i think that would be really hard to do. oy, so monotonous. she kicked ass. i didn't see anyone take a gel or anything. maybe jillian just gave them some extra gum every hour haha.

Emily said...

I am so excited for your PR in the half! I am going to jump out in secret locations along the course dressed as the Hamburgler to give you bags of money for your bank. You'll never know when you will get hit! (I've been drinking.) Not only will you set a PR, you will DEMOLISH that PR.

I am glad to see that we have the same appreciation for civil infrastructure. You don't even want to know how many bridges I photographed in my time in Seattle!

I love the new color scheme and daffodils...2 bunches for $3 at Safeway this week.

(I'm on your air mattress as I type this.)


Julianne said...

You and Zach are so cute. I love your pictures at the beach. So romantic. You definitely give me a view of Portland that I don't get to see! Also, I know you're going to kick some serious a$$ at Run for Roses Half. I'll be there, too. So excited to run with the PDX bloggers!!

Petraruns said...

Love all the photos. It looks great - as do you - always.

I'm glad you're coping with joblessness - it can't be any fun but something is bound to come up for you and you're not using it as an excuse to sink into the couch of doom. Well done..

Billy Burger said...

Just visualize yourself doing it and I'm sure you can knock it out of the park come April 5th. Best of luck Jen.

Oh, and if I was currently unemployed, I'd run 100+ miles each week! Just kidding. Maybe.

Lotusphx said...

The pics look awesome! And since Deana doesn't have her own blog yet... Good Job DEANA!!! Way to go Coach Jen :)

miss petite america said...

your pictures are always so freaking awesome! i don't want to sound like a commercial but i used blurb dot com to make a really professional looking photography book for sg's parents for christmas. i'll bet your pictures would make a great coffee table book!

Marathon Maritza said...

Georgeous pictures!!!!!

I'm glad that you are feeling okay about this whole job situation, that is truly a blessing. And I think you're doing great with being patient, remember that good things come to those who wait!


ShirleyPerly said...

I'm so envious of your tax refund!! Man, we owe Uncle Sam a LOT, which is why I put off dealing with taxes as late as I could. Glad to hear you guys are OK regardless of the job situation.

And thanks for sharing all those wonderful photos. I especially enjoyed seeing those pretty flowers and the beach (remember them from the short time I spent in Oregon many years ago). You can keep the blizzard, though ;-)

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