The Places Running Takes Us

Imagine my surprise when I sat down to write my latest attempt at literary mediocrity, only to find this is my 500th Post!

Say WHAT???!!!

Yes ma’am. 500 posts about running, Disney, dogs, travel, opinions, memories, reviews, recaps, and a general overview of all things shenanigans.  One name change, a couple of breaks, a few years later and here we are.  What have we learned along the way?  Not much.  That’s okay though because it’s been a fun trip and I don’t plan on that trip coming to an end any time soon.

In honor of this not so momentous occasion, let’s dive back into the archives and take a look at where this crazy sport of running has taken me.  As a true Sagittarian, I have an ingrained love of travel.  So combining my two loves has always been a no-brainer.  So grab a margarita, step into the Black Dog People Mover, and enjoy the ride.

One Happy Wonder Mutt.

Vero Beach, Florida

Not exactly a destination running beach, but definitely a happy place for the Black Dog family.  Thanks to a family connection, we spent many a great weekend at a beautiful beach house walking some serious mileage along Vero Beach in Florida, conveniently located about 4 miles away from Disney’s Vero Beach Resort.  The sand was too soft for running – unless you’re a glutton for punishment – but a decent hour’s walking in that stuff was enough to make you feel like you’d run a good half marathon.  Not to mention that if you went at the right time of year, the turtles are laying eggs all over the beach.

#adorbs

Washington D.C.

Once upon a time, a certain Grouper had the opportunity to attend a session at the FBI Academy in Quantico.  Just before he graduated, we had the chance – ironically on September 11th, 2010 – to run a memorial 5k that started/ended in Arlington VA, and ran through a small section of DC, including past the side of the Pentagon that was struck on that tragic day.  It was a bit surreal to say the least, and plenty of tears were shed as we slowed down passing the Pentagon.  To this day we are still so proud and honored to have been able to participate in such an amazing event.

All’s good in the Big Easy.

New Orleans

Where do I even begin with this wonderful city?  The people are SO fun, the food is out of this world, and the music?  All I can say is you’ve never heard such a mix of every genre out there.  Running along Canal Street can take you to Louis Armstrong Park, along the Mississippi, back to the French Market, (Bloody Mary to burn your lips off anyone?), up Bourbon Street, past Marie Laveau’s Voodoo Shop, (which sadly has become very commercialized), and through the French Quarter.  The roads and sidewalks are horrible running surfaces, but the color and flavor of the city cannot be beat.

Hang on little grapey friends.                              We’re on our way!

Napa, California

Being the wine freaks that we are, it was only a matter of time before we decided to fly the friendly skies to the west coast and indulge ourselves on all things grape.  The best part of staying in Napa is a miles long paved fitness trail that runs right through the main stretch of the town and continues into the start of the vineyards located in the center of the valley.  We visited in August, so while quite toasty for those of you more “thick-blooded”, we were right at home in the warmer temperatures.  And what’s better than being able to run off all of those wine induced calories?

Best. Bling. Ever.

Disney World

It always makes me smile to think of all the amazing people I’ve met simply by the need I’ve had to reign in the game show dollar machine I have for a brain and let what’s racing around in there spill out onto this blog.  Lisa is one of those people.  We may live 2,214 miles apart (give or take a few), but our common love for running has bonded us probably for life.  She is the hare to my turtle when it comes to pace, but having someone as obsessed about pace, finish times, and injuries as I am, makes all the conversations we have daily – thanks to Google chat – that much more fun.  We were finally able to run Disney’s Wine and Dine Half back in 2016 together, and to this day, even though it was my slowest half ever – because who can resist stopping for ever silly photo op possible? – it was one of my favorite races ever.

When it all comes down to it though, as much as I suffer from a never-ending case of wanderlust, I love coming home just as much.  Who wouldn’t with sunrises like this and little furry friends who are only too happy to keep you company on a cool tropical winter morning?

Home. Sweet. Home.

The best advice I can offer you is this:  explore the world.  There is so much out there to be seen, heard, tasted, and experienced and life is way too short not to do all of it.  Even if sometimes that experience means simply turning left instead of right.

Enjoy the ride.

 

Where is your favorite place to run?  Do you explore new places by running through them?  

(A Wine and Dine Story) And So We’ve Come….

…to the end of the road.

Literally.

I know this has been a long, drawn out, painful process.  Much like my running life has been the last few years.  And it ain’t over yet.  Well, almost.

I promise.

The pain is coming to an end.

When last we checked in here and here, I was headed for that great big starting line in the……….wait.  No no no. Not THAT one.  This one.

wine-and-dine-start

Jeep packed up, Wonder Mutt dropped off at the neighbors, and off to the most Magical Place on Earth we go.  Not without a giant case of the nerves.  After checking in to our little temporary home for the next few days the night before, we headed over to the expo.  Nothing too exciting there, just your usual, if more complicated, expo shenanigans as in past years.  Complicated as in “let’s just make everyone walk all over kingdom come to get anywhere else between packet pick up, shirt pick up, and goodie shopping” kind of complicated.

We managed to get through all the madness, hook up with running buddies Rae and Lisa, grab a brewski upstairs from the expo, head off for a day of eating, shooting aliens in Studios, grabbing some moonshine at Fort Wilderness (literally, moonshine!), and singing our way all over central Florida.  Yep, that was us you heard.

night-sweats

Much less hairy though.  MUCH.

Fast forward to Sunday morning.  Oh-dark-thirty.  No sleep.  Nerves jumping like Pop Rocks.  I tape the beeJesus out of my knees, get dressed, try to eat the bagel the hubs had so thoughtfully picked up for me the day before, quadruple check that I have all race necessities – tunes, shades, Sport Beans, sanity (not so much), and off we go.  Hubs drops me off at Coronado Springs so I can hop race transpo to the start, and back to bed goes he.  After a very short wait, bus arrives, off to WWoS we go, and the reality of what’s about to happen REALLY starts to sink in.

Holy crap woman, you’re about to run 13.1 miles.  Again.  With the very real possibility that you may finish, not finish, implode before you hit the start line, or act like that ninny in A League of Their Own.

baseball.jpg

Thankfully, the wait to start wasn’t unbearably long, and before I knew it, Rudy and Carissa, those ever faithful runDisney announcers, had the corrals off and running.  Ever vigilant of not starting off too fast, I ignored the typical bizarre looks I was getting from runners around me as I had the following convo with my psyche.  Apparently out loud.

“Hey idiot.”

“What.  Can’t you see I’m trying to run here?”

“Yeah.  That’s why I need you to rein it in and make sure you stick to your intervals.  Otherwise you may not finish.”

“I may not finish anyway.  And I hate running intervals.”

“Hubs said if you finish, he’ll have Patron waiting for you.”

(silence)

(more silence)

(even more silence)

“Dammit.”

Needless to say, agave juice won out.

Margarita in a glass

Dammit.

Soooo, as I wound my way at a snail’s pace around Animal Kingdom, of course I had to stop and hang out with these guys.

Stilt Guys1.jpg

My, you’re all really…..tall.

The new course then meandered along random Disney World roads and back towards Epcot.  At which point, my eyes lit up like I had just discovered a giant bowl of spaghetti with garlic and olive oil.  Due in no small part to what was probably the GREATEST MILE MARKER EVER……

mile-9-rev

Maniacal smiling!

Mile 9.  I knew I was going to finish this bad boy one way or another.  But not before I had to go through what I lovingly termed the MILE OF REALLY MOTHER-EFFER?!?  I JUST COULDN’T GET THROUGH THIS WITHOUT YOU, COULD I?!?

stubborn mule

Nope. Not a chance lady.

Hello Mile 10, hello “what the hell just imploded in my left leg?”  Oh wait, just a lovely little mixture of tight IT band, tuckered out left glute, with a touch of inner left knee soreness thrown in for good measure.  Now, all that being said, I had stuck to my intervals, stopped to stretch every 1-2 miles, and never pushed the pace the entire time.  I knew this was not going to be a speedy half, and had already decided to just have fun with it.  Having this blow up at Mile 10 didn’t really bother me all that much, and if I had to walk it in from there, then so be it.  I could live with it.  I knew the hubby and Lisa were already celebrating her oh-so-speedy finish, and I had every intention of joining them in consuming vast quantities of celebratory libations before much longer.

lisa-grouper1

“Move it girl, there’s partying to be done!”

Then I knew the runner gods had been paying attention.  Mile 10 consisted of an insanely banked ramp up to an overpass.  A ramp which had no flat spot to run on.  ANYWHERE.  Now, I had received very strict orders from the Man and Torture Tony to NOT RUN THE RAMPS OR ELSE.

And for once, I actually listened.

Not just because there wasn’t a flat spot anywhere along that ramp to run on, but also because – you know – that whole pesky left leg thing.

Then, a Disney miracle happened.

miracle.png

No, not that miracle.

As the ramp peaked at the top of an overpass around Mile 11, I decided just to test the waters a bit and see if the extended walk break may have been enough for everybody to calm the hell down.  After a few cautious jogging steps – and a lot of breath holding – things seemed to actually be…..ok.

laugh dog

Say WHA?????

What?  Were you not paying attention?

I said,

EVERYTHING SEEMED TO BE OK

AS IN NO PAIN

ANYWHERE!

In complete and utter disbelief, I called the hubs and Lisa, told them to get the ‘ritas chilling, kicked it into high gear – well, MY high gear – and brought it on home.

The rest – as they say – is history.  Enjoy.

choir1

medal-shirt1

Enjoy the ride.

Thank you for following along with me on what has been on helluva ride.  Your good wishes and crossed paws all helped me cross that finish line on that beautiful morning, and I could not have done it without you.  I especially could not have done it without the encouragement of my hubs, my family, Lisa, PT Pam, Torture Tony, and Dr. Testa.  It’s been a long and painful journey, but we have finally arrived, in no small part to every one of you.  My running adventures will continue, and I hope to take all of you along on them.  Hang on tight, as the ride is only going to get better from here on out!

Full Circle. Almost. Again.

In the last installment of Black Dog shenanigans here, we left you on the edge of your seats, (just work with me here people), waiting to see how the latest attempt at post-surgical recovery/rehab shenanigans was moving along.  My angel-winged running neighbor had recommended this GUY, who, as it turns out, has proven to be the man.  As in THE Man.  As in, after more than two years since all of this #brokeknee crap started, has actually been able to, ya know – FIX MY SHIT – and get me running kind of like a normal running person does.

elmo dance.gif

I’ll make this short as I know your attention span isn’t any better than mine.

Wait.

What?

Was I saying you something?

Oh yeah.  Running rehab shenanigans.

Anywho, this GUY, not only shoved a finger in that lovely area known as the piriformis, which was immediately followed by a string of cursing the like has never emitted from my goody two shoes yap –

incredulous-owls

Lady, you’re not fooling anyone.  Stop embarrassing yourself.

– but within about 10 seconds had figured out what was actually broken THIS TIME.  Say it along with me kids…

“Since you’ve got a completely shut down broke ass on your right side, your left side has stepped up to the plate, tried to do the work for both sides, and has now decided it’s had enough of this malarky.  It’s sending you the message, with all due respect, to go eff yourself, it’s tapping out.”

Well now.  That’s pretty…..specific.

What’s a frustrated runner idiot girl to do?  Get to work of course.  On BOTH sides of dear ol’ broke ass.

get back to work.jpg

The next few weeks consisted of such insanity as hip and glute strength building, cursing at my new BFF Torture Tony, Elastigirl-like stretching sessions, more cursing, zapping, icing, resistance band exercises I have to determine the validity of or if Torture Tony was just effing with me, more cursing, and oh yes….running.  Remember running?  That bastard of a sport that started all this nonsense in the first place?  That activity over which us runner idiots types have no power to ignore, like a mythological siren’s song?   Yeah, that one.

Jackass.

crying runner.png

After sweating and swearing through four weeks of visits to the GUY and Torture Tony, I was as ready as I could be.  I tried to ignore the knots in my gut that kept telling me…

Too bad you didn’t find these guys a year ago.”

You haven’t run further than 9.5 miles before your leg implodes, you know.”

“You’re an idiot.”

“There’s a big, fat Ghiradelli sea salt dark chocolate bar in the freezer.”

“Could you possibly be any more undertrained for this if you tried?”

“You’re an idiot.”

“You’re going to have so much kinesio tape on your leg you may get mistaken for a mummy.”

“Have I mentioned you’re an idiot?”

Next up, the final chapter.  Thrilled this painful journey is almost over aren’t ya?  It’s okay.  I understand.

resting-bitch-face-dog-3

Seriously. Killing me.

Enjoy the ride.

How long have you given a new type of therapy before giving up on it?  Have you ever had to apologize for swearing at your doctor?  Did you find the therapy got a bit more “intense” after unleashing on him/her?  Do you have cute pet names for him/her?

Friday Funny

FF weekend cats

Enjoy the ride.

Happy long weekend to those of you pulling the Monday through Friday thing!  What do you have on tap for this long weekend?  Perhaps racing in the Happiest Place on Earth?  Fighting gators during your weekend triathlon?  Whatever you have planned, may you enjoy every second of the next few days celebrating in a completely pointless life.  See ya summer!

Friday Funny

As we get the summer off to a proper start, i.e., paddleboard bar hopping,  passing out under the nearest palm tree, and playing with critters like this!

FF Shark cage

Enjoy the ride

.

Are we all ready for the start of the national holiday we celebrate here at Black Dog Productions known as Shark Week?  Do you think sharks are evil or just completely misunderstood?  Have you ever been on a shark dive?

Friday Funny

As I’m currently on my yearly jaunt to the City of All Things Shenanigans, I thought I’d start off your Memorial Day weekend with a little taste of the Crescent City.  Happy weekend everybody!

FF NOLA cat

 

Enjoy the ride.

Laissez les bons temps rouler!  Let the good times roll on this holiday weekend everyone!  What kind of shenanigans do you guys have planned?

 

The South Florida Edition of Run Where I Live!

Because where I live is AWESOME….

#heavysigh

#heavysigh

Okay, well not EXACTLY here, but you get the general idea.

When Danielle asked me to be a part of the cool kid’s club, I played it, well, cool.  “Yeah, well, let me think about it and I’ll get back to you.”  N-O-T.  It was actually more like this.

Whooooo hooooo!

Whooooo hooooo!

Along with a bunch of other equally cool kids, Danielle came up with the great idea of taking you on a virtual running tour where each of us live.  Cool, right?  Right? RIGHT???  Soooooo, I bet you’ll never guess where I’ll be taking you.  Go ahead.  Guess.  Guess again.  Nah really, guess.  No idea?  Heeeheeeheee, silly wabbits. Twicks are for the twopics.

Try saying THAT five times fast.

Uhhhh....

Uhhhh….

Once you untwist your tongue from your left ear, follow along with me as I take you on a short little journey NOT to the beach.  Sorry kids, I’m just keeping it real.  Real close.  Like across the street from my crib close.  Because the powers that be in my little corner of the universe were kind enough to provide us lowly residents with a dog-friendly, duck-friendly, dingo-friendly, well-marked running path.  (Actually I’m just guessing on the dingos.)

The dingos ARE the babies!

The dingos ARE the babies! HA!

So come along with me to a little cozy place called Coconut Creek, Florida.  More specifically, a lovely little spot known to the natives – well, everybody actually – as….cue drum roll here…..Sabal Pines Park.

See?  Sabal Pines Park.  The dingos are chillin' in the bushes.

See? Sabal Pines Park. The dingos are chillin’ in the bushes.

Coconut Creek – aka the Butterfly Capital the World – is doing it’s best to be a green city.  We get to reap the benefits by having numerous parks and walkways throughout our pretty little ‘burb, and Sabal Pines is no exception.  Located about five minutes from the north end of Fort Lauderdale, Sabal Pines has three baseball fields, one softball field, a couple of smaller ball fields for the smaller human units, and a couple of combination football/soccer fields.  ‘Cause, you know, us Americans are a little confused when it comes to what sport actually requires the use of feet.

Surrounding all this confusion, is a paved and concrete 1.15 mile path, marked approximately every 20-30 feet with…..wait for it…..PAW PRINTS.  Because we are JUST THAT AWESOME.

parkpath

Thought I was kidding about the paw prints, didn’tcha?

If you start at the conveniently marked start/finish line, and go toward the north end of the park and follow the path to the southwest, you’ll come out by the soccer fields.  Head south towards the water and guess what?  The locals will be only to happy to greet you with a flurry of feathers and quacking.  They often even get so excited, they just poop right on the spot!  So watch your step.  I like to consider it a stretch of a Spartan race.

Watch out for land mines.  They're not deadly, but tend to be bit slippery.  This is a public service announcement courtesy of Black Dog Productions.

Watch out for land mines. They’re not deadly, but tend to be a bit slippery. This is a public service announcement courtesy of Black Dog Productions.

As you run the path, you can always zoom your way into the main park building for pit stops and water.  There’s also bathrooms and a water fountain on the east side of the park near the tennis courts.  Two paws up for this one as the water is always nice and COLD.  That’s a BIG score when you’re running in 95+ degree heat.  The park rangers are also usually buzzing around in golf carts in case you need any help.  There’s also ample parking next to the tennis courts and by the main building near the big playground.  Remember not to leave anything of value in your car.  There have been a few burglaries over the years, even with all the traffic in and out of the park, so just be smart about it and leave your bling back at the home base.  You look fabulous in just sweat dahling.

I’ve found this little slice of park paradise to be perfect for timing Mr. Galloway’s Magic Mile, as you don’t necessarily have to have a GPS with you to confirm the exact distance.  It’s also great if you want to do so some quarter-mile repeats, as the pavement is marked at each – you guessed it – quarter mile!  Nice stuff, ain’t it?!

Overall, even though there’s not a lot of shady spots on this path, it’s clearly marked, flat, and not usually too crowded if there’s not a sporting event taking place.  The bathrooms are clean, the water is cold, and the natives are friendly.  What else could one possibly want?  You can even motor across the road and meet me in the pool for a nice post-workout cool down!  Just have your people call my people and they’ll see if I’m available.

Come on in, the water's fine!

Come on in, the water’s fine!

So that’s about it for a quick little running journey through the tropics.  If you ever happen to hyperspace to the northern end of Broward County and you’re looking for an easily accessible, well-hydratable, slightly poopy decorated running path, check out the ‘burbs and Sabal Pines Park.  I’ll be waiting for you at the end with a margarita and bowl of Moose Tracks in hand.  Because that is HOW WE ROLL here in the Creek.

Make sure you follow along on Danielle’s virtual tour of running HERE!  Her blog will have links to all kinds of cool places to run written by those peeps who know them best.  We even get to blast over to Aussie Land for a bit o’mate time!

Ready for some more running in the Sunshine State?  Your next stop on the Run Where I Live party train will be near our favoritest place ever.  Yes, we are headed to Orlando!  Yes, THAT Orlando!  The one with MICKEY!! So jump on board ’cause the train is departing.  Next stop, See Jess Run!  ALL ABOARD!!

 

Enjoy the ride.

If you’d like to make your hometown another stop on the Run Where You Live Road Trip, submit your link to Danielle at Live, Run, Grow, and she’ll gladly add you to the list!

That Time Someone I Know Went to Disney World

Intrigued?  Don’t be.  It’s time for me to be whiny.  BECAUSE IT’S BEEN FOUR MONTHS SINCE I’VE BEEN IN MY HAPPY PLACE.

sleepy dog

zzzzz….zzzzz….zzzzzz

Wait.

No.  Not that one.

THIS one.

Hello beautiful.

Hello beautiful.

This is always a trying time of year for me.  Being a seasonal passholder, I’m well aware of three things:

1.  Blackout season is fast approaching

2.  I JUST came back from New Orleans #shenanigans and need to recover – both financially and liver-ly(?)

3.  Absence makes the heart grow fonder. #HORSEPOOP   Absence makes Black Dog very, very whiny.  VERY.

crying-puppy-o

I WANNA GO TO DISNEEEEEEYYYYYYY!!!!!!

So as I really have nothing interesting, relevant, or even remotely entertaining to talk about at this particular moment, let me leave you with this little thought.

Should you find yourself suddenly immersed in all things magical – AND YOU HAVEN’T BROUGHT YOUR TEAM CAN-AM TEAMMATES WITH YOU – KELLIE – then you damn well better step up the virtual Disney tour guide role.  Romantic anniversary trip or not, WE ALL NEED A FIX.  So be a good Mousketeer friend/family member, and take care of those with less vacation time, depleted vacation accounts, and suffering from a severe case of the Disney DT’s.  It’s the least you can do.

happy disney kids1

Enjoy the ride.

Do you have a virtual battle plan when someone goes to Disney and you don’t?  Are pictures, videos, and virtual cocktails on your list of requirements for virtual Disney tour guide?  Have your loved ones failed miserably at this responsibility, or do they take it very seriously?

Let The Shenanigans Commence. Again!

Once again, Black Dog Productions is making our annual jaunt to the scene of the crime…and our favorite place for Black Dog shenanigans.  Because that is what we do best.

HERE. WE COME.

HERE. WE COME.

Want to be a part of the shenanigan making?  Want to feel as though you’re RIGHT THERE WITH US?  Then come along for the virtual nuttiness tour via FaceBook, Twitter, or Instagram.  From the food, to the drinks, to the food, to the drinks, to the….well, you get the idea, you’ll feel as though you’re right in the middle of the insanity that is sure to amuse, bemuse, and – let me just throw it out there – very possibly shock you!  Because that is how we roll here at BDRD.

Hang on.

It’s gonna get a little crazy.

Life is short.

So make sure you…

Enjoy the ride.

Have you ever been to New Orleans?  Did you partake of shenanigans NOLA style?  Did they involve Hurricanes, horses, or perhaps an unfortunate incident with a horse wearing Mardi Gras beads?  Don’t ask, just go with it…..

What’s With All the Hoop-La???

Yup.  Never saw it coming, did ya?

Final Four

I may or may not have mentioned it before, but here at Black Dog Productions, we are a multisport dog house.  Running, soccer, football, baseball, we follow it all.  For a little change of pace this year, we decided to change things up a bit, and satisfy our ugly competitive battle of the sexes natures by jumping on the March Madness Bracket Bandwagon.  I won, hubby lost, he pays for lunch.  #suckstobehim

happy dance

However, to his credit, I was sitting with the game show dollar machine in full swing, unable to grab onto a single friggin’ blog post idea, when he threw out one of the GREATEST IDEAS EVER.  (Not really, but I’m going to let him think so.  If for no other reason than he’s just so damn cute.)  This is going to take some input from you guys so pay attention.  You too.  Yeah you.  The one in the back not paying attention.  Hey!  TURN OFF THE DAMN DUAL SURVIVOR MARATHON AND PAY ATTENTION.  THIS IS IMPORTANT STUFF HERE.

Does this bandanna make my dupa look fat?

Does this bandanna make my dupa look fat?

As we sit here watching Gonzaga and Duke duke it out, (get it?  DUKE it out? hehehe, I CRACK myself up!), wondering which is going to be the last team to make it to the Final Four, let us throw this poser out into the running world.

Final Four Races

Let’s hear it runners!  Are you a diehard Disney fan or more of a Marine/Boston/New York kind of schlepper?  Love those Rock ‘n’ Roll runs, or prefer the insanity that is Ragnar?  Or do you prefer those little local jaunts, where you know that guy who lives just north of Fort Lauderdale Beach always has a keg tapped in his driveway around mile 7 of the A1A Half/Full Marathon?  INQUIRING FURRY MINDS WANNA KNOW.

No rules here.  Any location, any distance, timed, not timed, we don’t care.  Let’s just see what everyone comes up with.  You never know, you just may find a new race you want to try.  That’s the beauty of race bucket lists – like my average race pace, it’s never consistent and always open to change.  Wait a minute, that’s not exactly a GOOD thing, is it?  Hmmm….

Wait.  What? Huh?  What was the question again?

Wait. What? Huh? What was the question again?

Enjoy the ride.

Get those phalanges moving people!  We want to know what your fave races are and what makes them total packages of awesomeness.  Is it the people, the places, the drink/snack selections?  Or, perhaps even the on-course entertainment?  (Have no fear, Team Can Am will be taking requests again at this year’s Wine and Dine.)

You Too Could Be A Disney Addict

I’m joining in on the magic that is the Monday Magical Mickey Linkup over run.geek.rundisney today.  Because that is what all the cool kids do.  Come check it out!

I’m an addict.  I freely – and proudly – admit it.

Thank the Phoenicians.

Thank the Phoenicians.

I really am addicted to this place.  Whether it’s cheesy gravestones at the Haunted Mansion, or holding intelligent conversations with the locals in Animal Kingdom…

"Quack, quack!"

“How YOU doin’?”

…I just can’t get enough.  And that’s never more apparent to me than when I have family visiting, but I’m not able to make my schedule work so I can heigh-ho the day away with them.  We do have a tradition in the Black Dog clan though that allows us to virtually do Disney with those of us who can’t be there.  It’s an unspoken rule that whomever is there, better make sure they send periodic video updates throughout the day/night.  So you can imagine how much my phone was blowing up all day long on Saturday.

Not my family.  But pretty damn close.

Not my family. But just as dysfunctional.

The addiction pangs were so strong this weekend that I even momentarily thought about actually getting up at the butt crack of dawn, making the three-hour drive, spending the day on a kamikaze run through the parks, and making the three-hour drive back home.  Note I said MOMENTARILY.  I don’t think there’s enough cappuccino and Thermonex in the world that could’ve gotten me through that insane of a day.   But I thought about it.  And realized I’ve got it bad.  REALLY BAD.

We mss you Black Dog!!!!

We miss you Black Dog!!!!

Ever get that feeling in the pit of your stomach that something’s just not quite right?  And I’m not talking about that second helping of questionable-meatloaf-looking-substance-you-found-buried-in-the-back-of-your-fridge kind of feeling.  I’m talking about that feeling like you’re running low on a very important vitamin or mineral.  Or perhaps you forgot to do something extremely important, but you just can’t quite put your finger on it.  Worry no more, I know EXACTLY what the problem is.

What's an elephant to do?

What’s an elephant to do?

So if jumping in your car and driving to Disney World isn’t really an option, I can only offer the next best thing:  kick everyone out of the house.  Have comfort food readily available, (shrimp pasta and salted caramel dark chocolate work quite well).  Find the closest furry black dog and insert on lap.  Spend the next six hours watching Maleficent, The Lion King, and 101 Dalmations (BOTH versions).  If your Disney itch hasn’t been scratched by then, well, there’s only one thing left to do.

driving to disney

There’s just no use trying to fight it.

Safe travels.  And don’t forget the periodic updates.  They’re mandatory.  Or else……you’ll be kicked out of the family.

 

Enjoy the ride.

Did you ever feel like you’re missing Disney World so much that you just might go insane if you didn’t get a quick fix?  What did you do about it?  Ever do Disney virtually?  Did it help, or did you wind up curled up in a ball on the couch, incoherently mumbling quotes from random Disney moves?

You Like Me! You Really Like Me! Again!

I received an awesome-sauce surprise a couple of weeks ago from a fellow I-live-in-inhuman-like-heat-and-I-almost-well-pretty-much-love-it blend named Helly.  She writes a great little blog aptly named Helly On The Run.  And much to my surprise, she found this particular little corner of the interweb….wait for it…..INSPIRING!  Now be assured, no exchange of cash, bribery, or promises of Princess Lisa’s Bailey’s Buttercream cupcakes, has taken place.  A common love of traveling – especially to Italy – may have been the beginning of a beautiful blendship.

Vaticano

Vaticano!

Whatever the reason may have been for dragging Helly kicking and screaming to Black Dog Runs Disney, (oh crap, did I say that out loud?), I’m sending her a big, wet, sloppy Calypso kiss for the nomination.  So here goes.

Muah!

Muah!

So let’s get to the good stuff.  First of all, the good part.

Whoo hoo!

Whoo hoo!

Now for the rules – ’cause we all know how much I LOVE rules (teeheehee…):

Rule One – thank and link to the person who nominated you – check!

Rule Two – list the rules and display award – checkcheck

Rule Three – share seven facts about yourself – oh boy, this could get ugly

Rule Four – nominate 15 other awesome-sauce bloggers and let them know they’ve been nominated.  I’m going to “adjust” this one just a little bit and nominate the blogs that make me laugh the most – because that’s the whole point of living isn’t it?  That and Moose Tracks Ice Cream. (like how I ALWAYS find some way to work that in?)

So here’s some little known facts about me…

7 facts

More than you ever wanted know huh?  Especially the Sponge Bobs.  There’s an image you won’t ever be able to get out of your head.

Now for just some of my fave blends! (There’s just so many, I can’t list them all…oh the humanity!)

blog list

Back yet?  Didn’t I tell ya these bloggers rocked?  Black Dog would never steer you wrong, especially when it comes to blogs and ice cream.  Never.  I take that stuff seriously.

 

Enjoy the ride.

What are some of your favorite blogs?  Do they make you laugh?  Do I make you laugh?  If not, just think of the Sponge Bobs.  Or go get some for yourself.  I’ll even buy you a pair.  I’m nice like that.

Think A Touch of OCD Can Get You To Your Goals?

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been a bit OCD about tracking my workouts. Not that I was obsessive about WHAT I was tracking, just that I did. I think it must have something to do with hating to see an empty box.

#fillalltheboxes

#fillalltheboxes

Even if it’s just an off day, I think if I start seeing too many, it gets the dupa to the gym or out on the road again, even if the couch is trying to sing it’s siren song.  Every successful weight loss program I’ve ever seen encourages you to track every bite of food, including how hungry you are at the time, as well as how you may be feeling emotionally.  It is believed you can begin to see patterns which may identify stressors causing you to stuff your yap.  My workout stressors?  Simple.  Clothes that don’t fit.

What I think I look like.  Hmmm....

What I think I look like. Hmmm….

As I donned a pair of capri pants this weekend, (why I don’t know, I HATE those damn things), my great mood at being in party central USA, quickly took a nose dive when I could barely move in them without feeling like the seams were going to explode.  What better motivation then to get the dupa out of bed this morning and get my booze-soaked, gut-stuffed body parts to the gym.

Ok, ok.  I'm getting up.

Ok, ok. I’m getting up.

Even though I’m pretty good at working out when I travel, it never seems as quality a workout as when I’m at home.  I’m sure it’s just another one of my mental OCD things, but I’m pretty sure once I cross the Broward County line, my cells call a meeting to order and the order goes out to retain all the water, fat cells, and miscellaneous crap they’re capable of before imminent combustion.

Keep EVERYTHING!

Keep EVERYTHING! Got it?

As my goal of filling every page of my little bible continues, (minus the 4 month-long non-running torture period), you can bet I’ll be doing everything in my power to fit into those ugly grey capris to the point where they will actually be – dare I say it? – TOO BIG.  Will I get there?  Who knows.  But you can bet your dupa I’ll be fighting the forces of Mother Nature with every squat, crunch, pushup, and plank these jiggly, shaky, jelly belly body parts can muster.  I have every intention of making THIS look easy.

Okay, maybe not.  But a girl can dream, can't she?

Okay, maybe not. But a girl can dream, can’t she?

 

Enjoy the ride.

Do you track your workouts?  Do you find it keeps you on track and helps you reach your food/fitness goals?