Monthly Archives: April 2012

Mizuno Wave Rider Shoe Commitment

Yep, it happened. I’m in a committed running shoe relationship. It slowly snuck up on me, but as you can see, I’ve gotta thing for Mizuno Wave Riders. I haven’t exactly kept track of how many I’ve bought in the last couple years, but I believe I’m on my sixth pair. We’ve steadily made it through many good runs, bad runs, and attempts at runs. Each time I return to the running store, I’ve renewed my devotion to this shoe and bought yet another pair without a second thought. Why mess with a good thing, right?

Mizuno Running Shoes

Much like every other item in this present day, every few months there seems to be a new version of the Wave Rider. The most current shoe is presently the Mizuno Wave Rider 15.  At about $115 a pop, I’ve spent around $700+ on these babies. And they’re worth every darn penny.

This time around though, I decided to get thrifty and searched for the previous Wave Rider, the 14’s. I’m a sucker for a neon colored running shoe, so I had to pry myself away from these puppies (one version of the new 15’s).

Mizuno Wave Rider

I found a pair of 14’s on Holabird Sports for only $56! They arrived only 2 days later with an extra bonus, a 5 hr energy! Mad props Holabird, you know the way to my heart.  I know my new Mizuno’s aren’t as cool as the neon yellow wave riders, but I still love them and they work! Already tested them out on one treadmill run. Side tip: If you buy a pair of running shoes always test them out on one treadmill run first. If you’re not happy, most running stores will let you return them.

mizuno wave rider 14

So if you find yourself in a committed shoe relationship like me, I suggest saving some moola and buy the oldie-but-goodie model online (and get hyped up on 5 hour energy).

Wondering when to replace your shoes?

My rule of thumb for replacing my shoes is very scientific. Are you ready? When my knees start to hurt, I replace my shoes. While this tactic has worked in the past, with a few running injuries this year, I’m determined to also track my shoes’ mileage (and use my Garmin Forerunner 405cx more!). Hopefully this will help to avoid more injuries. If you don’t have a Garmin, Active Trainer easily allows you to track your mileage.

The word on the runspert street is you should replace your shoes every 300-500 miles. This will vary from person to person. For example a smaller runner with a neutral gait may run 500 miles, while taller, heavier runner may need to replace closer to 300.

running shoe mileage

Some other running shoe tips:

  • To extend the life of your shoes, have more than one pair of running shoes.  Alternate your runs between the two pairs.
  • Only run in your running shoes. Wearing your running shoes to work or for your daily routine, can quickly break them down. Yet,  one more reason to not wear your running shoes with your business suit.
  • Have a gait analysis done.  Many running shoe stores offer running gait analysis as a service. That’s how I picked the Mizuno’s! If you’re from the DC area, Pacers runsperts are very helpful!

Happy Running Amigos! 


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Monument Avenue 10 K 2012

monument avenue 10 k Richmond

As a once local Richmonder, I can’t help but love the Ukrop’s Monument Avenue 10 k. Runners, walkers, cheerleaders, bands, costume connoisseurs, and mimosa drinkers thrive on this race and literally take over the city. Benefiting the Massey Cancer Center, this day is near and dear to many. This year 40,638 10kers participated and so far the race has raised over $425,000!!!

Voted as one of America’s top races by USA Today, the 6.21 mile race is set on picturesque Monument Avenue. Classic Richmond houses outline the flat, cobble stone race course. With bands playing at every corner and rowdy fans cheering you on, you can’t help but feel  a bit like a rock star. In fact the Richmond poparazzi were all over my friends and I this year. Please, please, no more photos Richmond Times Dispatch. I just can’t take the fame.

Sports Backers does such a great job organizing the race, and even with 40,000 people this race is a well oiled machine.

The spirit of the race is contagious, and the race organizers do their part to encourage participants and side-line cheerers to really enjoy the event by throwing in some fun contests.

AT&T Dash for the Cash: One lucky runner is chosen for Dash-for the Cash each year. The contestant is given a head start and if they can out-run the fastest elite runner, the $2,500 AT&T Dash for the Cash prize is his/hers for the taking! If not, the race winner will tack on the$2500 as a bonus  to their 1st place earnings.

Helllooooo AT&T,  I’m available for next year.

Spirit Contest: The most enthusiastic spirit groups cheering on the 10 k participants are awarded with mola  by a sponsor,  this year Hirschler Fleischer Law Firm.

  • 1st Place  – $300
  • 2nd Place – $200
  • 3rd Place – $100
  • Ten other groups also received a $50 prize.

My mom may not have won the prize, but she sure is the best cheerleader I know!

Richmond Times Dispatch Dress Up & Run Contest: This race brings out every runner’s inner creativity and craftiness. You can win money even if you don’t win the race!

Somehow we didn’t win last year…I just have to accept there were craftier mofos than us. up costume

Prizes for the contest include :


Best Group Entry

1st Place



2nd Place



3rd Place



Okay, enough rambling about the race and more about me and my raceday photoshoot. That one on the right is a real beaut. Money posin’ at its finest.

monument avenue 10 k 2012 Richmond

I’m still recovering from my sprained ankle and decided to attempt the race only 2 days before.  I planned to meet my two racing buddies at the start line which was a little hectic, but somehow we found each other. It was meant to be.

With my adrenaline pumping, my ankle wrapped tightly, and Jenny by my side, I somehow ran the whole race. We even held hands at the finish line. It was beautiful.  I almost walked at mile 5, but hearing my mom cheer me on from the parrot head tent motivated me to keep on truckin’. She also slipped me a margarita to help me forget the last mile (jk…but maybe next year?).   My body was really sore the next day and I had some nice battle blister from my ankle wrap. Considering I hadn’t done a real deal work out in a month much less run, it was expected.

monument avenue 10 k 2012

Brian on the other hand was a speed demon and ran the race in 42:42. Just a hare faster than our last time last year when we sported our amazing Up! costumes (featured above).

The fastest male, Reuben Chebii, ran in 28:07 minutes and the fastest female, Magdalene Makunzi, ran it in 32:24. Watch out Reuben and Magdalene, I’m beating you next year and winning that $2500. AT&T,  I will need a 6 mile head start.

monument avenue 10 k 2012 Richmond

After the race, I had brunch with family and friends, drank a few mimosas at Buddy’s Place in the fan, and dressed up in Mal’s clothes (pic below).

There’s nothing like a hard earned mimosa on a sunny day. In case you’re wondering there’s around 137 calories in one mimosa.  Burning around 550 calories = 4 Mimosas guilt free!

Exercise & Calories Burned per Hour

130 lbs

155 lbs

180 lbs

205 lbs

My Pace: Running, 6 mph (10 min mile)





Brian’s Pace: Running, 9 mph (6.5 min mile)





Apparently the guys thought the costume contest continued after the race.

monument avenue 10 k 2012 Richmond

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Easter Lollipop Cupcakes

For Easter brunch this year, I wanted to make some EASY but fun cupcakes. I mean I love spending an hour browsing around on pinterest, day dreaming about the extravagant cupcakes I plan to bake but let’s get real…I’m not gonna make sheep cupcakes with a barn cake to match. Okay, maybe I would if I didn’t have a job.  I seriously think those people hire elves to secretly work on all their pinterest crafts day in and day out.

So instead I sought out the master of all things holiday related, Martha Stewart.  Of course, I knew my cupcakes would be better than hers because my highly successful cooking empire is worth $971 million, not a measly $970 mil.

I adapted her recipe because Giant and Target both had a small selection of sprinkles.  So instead of sprinkles I dyed the frosting (and myself). I went to church the next day with blue dye still on my hands…good thing I had an apron (thanks Jenny).

laffy taffy

What you’ll need:

  • Cupcake mix of your choice (and the ingredients written on the box).
  • 2 cans of buttercream vanilla frosting. You could probably get by with one, but I like a lot of frosting.
  • Lollipops.
  • Food coloring of your choice.
  • Green Laffy Taffy.
  • A frosting kit– I bought the 12 piece Wilton cupcake decorating kit at Target for $9. It even has instructions how to make different frosting designs.
  • Something to roll the Laffy Taffy.  A rolling pin is preferable…If you’re ghetto like me,  a can of peas.
  • Scissors to cut the petals.

Flower lollipops


  • Bake the cupcakes and let them cool.
  • Dye the frosting. I dyed one can purple and the other blue.
  • Roll out the taffy and cut into petals.
  • Frost the lollipops using your decorating set.
  • Frost the cupcakes.
  • Place the lollipops and taffy petals on the cupcake.

Ta Da! Bright, springtime cupcakes perfect for Easter brunch!

easter lollipop cupcakes

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Just Keep Swimming, Swimming, Swimming

I recently sprained my ankle running trails, so I’ve had to take a month hiatus from most cardio workouts…especially running. For the first week, it was a great excuse to read all three Hunger Game books, but after I burned through those the novelty was gone.

Not being able to run has only made me want to run even more (funny how that happens).  It doesn’t help that with the arrival of spring, the weather has been beautiful. Running has been such an integral part of my life. It’s helped me set goals, burn off steam, and  stay in shape. Without it I feel pretty darn lazy.

After sitting on the sidelines of one recent race (read here) I am now even more determined to get back into my fighting shape.

I’ve already signed up for two races, the Mayou Angelou 5K  (in April)  and Rebel Race 5K (in July). My friends caught me in a weak moment, and I even agreed to run the Tough Mudder (10-I-want-shoot-myself-miles) in September.  I know, really smart to sign up for races when I can’t currently run…

fat ankle

So no running? What to do? Well, when my foot and ankle look like this after just standing on it for a couple hours…my options are pretty limited.

I tried the stationary bike twice, but when I looked down at the meter and realized I burned 40 calories in an hour (exaggerating)… the bike just wasn’t cutting it.

I’ve been meaning pick up swimming again, mainly for the men in speedos,  so this was the perfect reason to hit the pool.

mean in speedos

Washington and Lee Pool is only a 5 minute drive from my place, but for some reason convincing myself to lap swim again makes it seem 200 miles away. Guess spraining my ankle is what it takes…

Waking up at 5:50 a.m., squeezing into my speedo (damn those suits are tighter than I remember) and walking into chlorine filtered air sure did bring back a lot of memories. The first swim was pretty rough for me. No cardio in a month = I’m reallly out of shape.  I’m winded after walking up the stairs to my apartment, unlike my swimming partner, who played water polo for Michigan, and is a lean, mean swimming machine. I was dying.

My ankle did hurt but the next day I noticed I could move it around more, so now I’m hooked. I even bought a 20 swim, swimming pass. It’s funny how easy it is to convince myself after that first initial swim.  The amount of calories you burn doesn’t hurt either…

I found this chart online. This website  gives an estimate for calories burned per hour for many cardio workouts.

Calories Burned per Hour 130 lbs 155 lbs

180 lbs

205 lbs

Backstroke 413 493 572



590 704 817 931
Butterfly 649 774 899 1024
Freestyle, fast 590 704 817 931
Freestyle, slow 413 493 572 651

My swimming partner recommended this website for workouts and we actually tried our first “legit” work out for ol’ timers (aka masters) like me . I still died but I’m glad to be back in the water.

Here’s our first work out:

600 warm up (200 swim/100 kick, repeat)
4×50 w/:15 rest (kick/swim, drill/swim, swim/build by 25)
3×150 swim w/:20 rest (descend 1-3)
4×50 w/:15 rest (non-free/free by 25)
4×50 @ 1:10 (Tarzan drill/swim by 25)
3×150 swim w/:30 rest (NO Walls!)
200 cool down
*2300 Total*

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