I always say, “Age is just a number” and “like a fine wine, I get better with age”. Seriously, life just gets better and better each year. I mean it’s not all rainbows and sunshine, but it certainly is a wild ride that I would pay to hop on again.
I celebrated surviving another year by doing some of my favorite things with some of my favorite people. Wednesday I used a few hours of personal time to take off early from work and go to the Fitness Center’s Resolution Challenge Awards ceremony - the incentive program that ran from New Years to mid-April. Appartently the competition was pretty close and my team came in 2nd. I’m convinced this was for a few reasons, we were tapering for the marathon in April and unable to rack up points towards the end of the challenge and the other team was able to go to all of the lunch time classes offered at the fitness center for huge points and I’m not allowed to attend lunch time classes. Oh well, we all won better health so points are not important.
After the awards ceremony, I went home and did some laundry and relaxed for a bit before going for a birthday run with my friend Kim. I ran to her house and then we did a nice 3 mile run plus an extra mile with her dog Daisy at the end. We averaged something close to 9:30s and felt amazing. She made me some birthday cookies (chocoalte chip with dried cherries) and had a card for me too! By the time I ran home my garmin said I totaled 9 miles for the run, fitting for my 33rd birthday since 3x3=9. I think it’s going to be a great year. I’m pretty sure my numerology number is 3 and my OCD brain likes it so double 3s should be friggin spectacular!
Thursday, work went by painfully slow. I took Friday off so naturally, Thursday dragged and would not end soon enough. Finally, the day was over and it was time to begin a long weekend of awesome all about me-ness. I went for another run with Kim. Slightly shorter, but equally awesome pace-wise. It was cloudy, but hot and humid. Summer really wants to happen, but Mother Nature is continuing her douchey trend for the year and extending the April showers all the way into the end of May. With the run to and from her house I logged about 7.5 miles for the night.
Friday morning I tried to sleep in, but Fat Boy Slim (FBS) works better than an alarm clock and was up at 4am and HUNGRY. When I refused to get out of bed, he started his usual routine of pawing at the blinds in my windows making the most annoying noise in the world, I got up and pulled the blinds out of his reach and crawled back in bed and then he began knocking stuff off my dresser. So, I eventually gave in and got up around 6am. I got up, fed FBS and made myself some tea. Sat on the couch in my PJs and watched the Today show for a few hours until Kathy Lee and whoever her side kick is now came on and then I got dressed and went for a short 6 mile run. I LOVE that 6 miles is what I consider a “short” run.
It was kind of yucky out. Not raining, but drizzling and grey. My shoes and legs were covered in mud (not as much as from Tough Mudder, but still pretty dirty). I took a nice hot shower and steamed up my place so much that the smoke detector went off. I hate it when that happens, but I love steamy hot showers and it happens a lot so I’m used to it. I got dressed and continued the birthday celebrations with a trip to the nail salon with Kim for manicures and pedicures. I haven’t had a mani/pedi probably since I started running. My toenails are always mangled or missing so I never bothered. Plus, I kind of feel bad for the nail technician having to try and paint non-existant nails. They did an amazing job though. My toes haven’t looked this good in years! It’s so nice to look down and not see the black and blue toenails and wonder how long until one falls off. The funniest thing was that I had two different technicians one that did my toes and one that did my fingers and they BOTH commented on the color of my skin asking me if I do spray tanning. I just chuckled and explained I just eat a lot of carrots and sweet potatoes. Perhaps it’s time to cut back so I don’t start to look like George Hamilton.
Nails done, I went home and took a quick nap before getting ready to go out with the Lowell Ladies for more Birthday fun. While I was lounging around, the UPS guy showed up with my me to me present. A new doormat. I know sounds wicked boring and kind of lame, but it’s the coolest door mat EVER! It’s a finish line, tehehe. So every time I come home I’m crossing a finish line. Seriously, I couldn’t think of a more perfect doormat for my front steps. It’s AWESOME!
The hardest part about getting ready for the night was deciding what to wear. We were just going to a small jazz bar in Lowell, but I rarely get the opportunity to dress up – I’m too old for Prom and all of my friends are already married or not getting married soon. I tried on almost every dress in my closet, twice! I still couldn’t decide. So, I texted Nutter and had her come over and help and Cherie came over too. We even sent a picture to a 3rd person that didn’t know me for an outside perspective. It was unanimoius – I rocked the sexy dress for the night and I looked HOT! Put my hair up in a side twisted bun and did a little 40s inspired pin curl on the side and even put on some fire engine red lipstick and liquid liner for extra hot Betty Davis eyes.
We went to a tapas place for a quick bite before the jazz bar – Ole. I wouldn’t recommend it. The food was disappointing at best and the service was horrible. Our waitress was to busy texting to be bothered. She tried to bring us something we didn’t order and forgot to bring us something we DID order and then when she brought the check she rudely informed us that she was done for the night and asked us to settle up so she could leave. And then AGAIN told us she wanted to leave when she brought us the change. We all agreed we will not be going back there again, but at least it gave us a little comedy for the evening.
The jazz club we went to , The Back Page, was really cool. Only about a half mile from my house and I never knew it was there. It was a small club down an alleyway next to one of the canals that runs through downtown Lowell. They had a great cocktail menu that had a nostalgic and local theme to it with drinks like “the Dirty Canal” (a dirty martini) and “the Mill Martini” (regular martini) or “the Dizzy Gillespie” and “ the Berry Goodman”. The band played some Billy Holiday and Ella Fitzgerald and everyone had a toe tappin’ knee slappin’ good time.
Saturday morning, Nutter and her friend Christine joined me for a nice 10 miler through Tewksbury and Andover. Although it was near 70 degrees and humid for the first time this year and my body was not acclimated to the heat, after we eased into the run and got into a good rhythm, we maintained a steady 10 minute/mile pace and even picked it up in the last 3 miles running 9:45, 9:30, and 9:20. I spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing and running errands. Oh and waiting to see if the World ended, as some crackpot religious fanatic predicted, it didn’t. No big surprise there.
Sunday, I ran the Lowell Fire Fighters 5K. I also ran to the race and home from the race since it started a mile and a half from my house and there was really no point in driving there and wasting the $4/gallon gas. It was significantly colder than the day before and cloudy again, thanks Mother Nature. I wasn’t trying to break any records considering I ran 10 the day before and I just wanted to have fun and socialize after the race. I finished in about 26 minutes and ran the last 2 miles at 8:00 pace so I’m getting close to my pre-Boston speed and should be ready to tear it up when the Good Times Summer Series begins. Hung out after the race chatting with friends and enjoying the views, what woman doesn’t like firemen? Handlebar mustaches and all, they’re nice to look at. Had to head home when I started to shiver from being sweaty and cold and standing around in the grey windy afternoon air. Spent the rest of my birthday weekend on the couch watching a Criminal Minds marathon. Couldn’t have asked for a better birthday. Can’t wait to see what fun and exciting things I can get myself into in my 33rd year.