The power of a (sincere) apology

By , October 23, 2014 6:23 am

Have you ever been surprised by the power an apology has had in making you feel better about something? Or maybe disappointed that it did nothing at all?

Sigh, I am equal parts amazed at how much a simple, sincere apology can make me feel better about a situation, and equal parts ashamed at how much I harbor frustrated feelings until I get one.

I try not to hold grudges, and give people the benefit of the doubt when they do something to me personally that makes me feel bad, but there is an innate part of me that wants acknowledgement… wants an apology. Immature? Maybe! And believe me – I definitely know the street goes both ways. I hope no one is waiting for an apology from me about something, and that if they are, that they approach me about the topic!

But, anyway… ha, that intro makes it seem like I am having personal drama* right now. I’m not! I was actually just thinking about an issue I’ve had a work for the past two months with someone underperforming and not listening to the requirements I gave them. Week after week I felt frustrated that they wouldn’t provide the deliverable I requested, despite explaining it to them several times and bringing other teammates in to help. Finally, we had a call to go over it again with their boss, and when the boss saw the deliverable did not meet the requirements the next week, well… the boss was not happy. And apologized to me several times.

Every single time I discussed that deliverable I found myself feeling tense and upset about it. And frustrated that I couldn’t get anywhere with it (despite bringing in other people to help). Several times, I ended the work day angry about it and went on a run to try to pound out my frustration.

But when the boss apologized to me? I instantly felt better. 

It just amazes me, how much having someone else say “I am sorry” can really mean. Having someone say “I get that this has been frustrating for you,” or whatever the situation is. 

Sometimes I just need that acknowledgement. (And sometimes I need to give it, too)

Ha! I didn’t even make this connection until I was about to publish this, but I got another apology last week that made me feel better about something. I was eating an Apple Pear Strudel Clif Bar and bit in to something hard with my teeth. I keep chewing, thinking… geesh, I don’t know what – that I was imagining it?! And kept biting in to something hard. Eventually I spit a tiny rock out my mouth. From a Clif Bar. I was a bit disturbed. I could have really hurt my teeth!

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I love Clif Bars but felt like I had to say something about it, so I sent them an email, letting them know what happened, and their apology made me feel better about the whole thing. And the half-eaten** Clif Bar and rock are still sitting on my desk, waiting for an envelope to send it to them for analysis.

*But oh, I have. <— talk about emo /vague / annoying post
**I kind of laugh that it is half eaten because when I grabbed it as a snack I told myself to try to only eat half, knowing that would be pretty hard for me… ha ha. The rock made it easy to stop!

Matchy Matchy

By , October 22, 2014 5:42 am

If you’ve been reading my blog for almost any amount of time you may have noticed that I love to be Matchy McMatchersons with my friends at races. See, um, here, here, here or… most of this page

It’s dweeby and I love it!

With whom do you like to “match” / be twinsies?

Sigh, I am always trying to get Steven to be matchy, but he just isn’t game. What’s up wit dat?! Ha ha. 

My snister, however, is game. 

Muah ha ha. When she was packing for her recent trip to see us, she made sure to pack shirts that I also had (or bring me NEW CLOTHES!!!). So we could be twinsies. Every. Single. Day. 

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And it was amazing. To us. Only. 

Hey! If you can’t be a complete goob around your family, then who can you be one around, really? (okay, okay, mostly everyone, if you’re me, apparently)

We had a really nice visit with Christina and Will! I unfortunately had events each day that kind of anchored us to the area around our house, but we were all happy to chill, eat at a few restaurants, have homemade pizza, play a game, go bowling, go on a walk, go shopping (2x!!!), get massages, visit the warehouse, go to a party at the studio I teach at… and did I mention, chill?

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Ha ha. Data is already missing Christina SO MUCH. She gave him all the proper cat aunt loving, and he really enjoyed it! He hung out with her for most of their visit!

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And while I mentioned it was a bit unfortunate I had a few events going on… I guess I meant mostly for them. For me, it meant my sister could do my hair and coordinate my outfits! Hee hee! I wish she could do that for me more often. Hmm, we have a empty spare bedroom…

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We can’t wait to see them again! Even if it’s not until Christmastime, sniff sniff! 

Who do you tell before social media?

By , October 21, 2014 9:20 am

Of course, I can’t ask the question in the title without asking you what kind of social media “sharer” you are!

Are you a:

  • NO sharer? Are you part of the rare and elusive breed that shares nada online? You don’t even have a Facebook account? You still, gasp, share most info in person or on the phone?!??! Hee hee. 
  • Do it then share it… sharer? You share things you do, and “important” news on social media, but don’t talk too much about it before, and share it after the event.
  • Talk it up and share it sharer? You talk about doing something quite a bit before doing it, then share it while you’re doing it, and after. 
  • Some sort of hybrid of above?

Ha ha, of course, those are just some goofy categories I came up with! But, I’ve been thinking about this a lot as I watch how people share information online. I am more of the do it then share it type. It’s odd for me to talk about something a lot (online, mind you) before doing it. In fact, it’s odd I mentioned the Milwaukee Marathon as much as I did before running it, and that I have mentioned the Dallas online so much, this far. There are certain things I try hard not to share online before it happens (or make too obvious), like travel, or work stuff.

So, anyway. 

Last week, I was talking with a friend about whether we prefer hearing something from a friend before we see it on social media. We both agreed that we’d prefer to hear “important” (of course, that is subjective) news first, rather than by discovering it on a feed or in a blog post. And of course, that made me think to ask you… have you ever been upset or hurt to find out news online, before hearing it “personally”?

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Personally is in quotes, because I don’t actually mean in person, I just mean, hearing it, well, on a person-to-person basis, whether that is in person, on the phone, in a text, in an email… whatever. 

I’ve never been upset (that I recall) to read something first online (I must say though, I have been honored to know “important” information before it is announced). I just take it as one of a few things: a sign of how close I am with the person and what they want to share with me first, a sign of them not thinking the news is worth telling people before they read it online, a sign that the news is too difficult to share with everyone personally (online is easier and faster method), that they may be sensational and prefer to share things this way, that the “news” isn’t something super important that you would share with people first… you get the idea. We’re all different, we’re all going to share differently.

So, back to the original question - who do you tell before social media?

I typically share things with my family and close girlfriends before doing them, and… anyone who happens to be around and listen to me talk. I am an over-sharer at heart. And while I can can keep other people’s secrets, I get pretty excited about my own stuff and will blab away!

Like I said, I’ve been noticing different people’s sharing patterns online, and I find it super interesting. We all have the capability to craft our own online social image, but, we can’t control how people interpret it! Or, how they feel by what you share and don’t share and what they already knew. Gawd, social media is so tricky. You could really use it to mess with people. Or purposefully piss them off. I am sure NO ONE ever does that…

Training Week 261

By , October 19, 2014 5:03 pm

Highlight of the Week: Getting back in to the marathon training grove / actually doing speedwork <— I know, whuuuuut?!

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Monday | October 13, 2014: 10 m run (first 5 w/Kelly) + teaching strength class + 3 m run (w/Bobbi)
Loc: Grayslake, Temp: 55°/55°, Time: 1:41:27, Pace: 10:08 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good / challenged by the humidity!
Strength: Cone and one dumbell, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good – workout flowed much better than last week
Loc: Grayslake, Temp: 62°/63°, Time: 30:47, Pace: 10:15 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: good
Tuesday | October 14, 2014: 4 m run (w/Kelly)
Loc: Grayslake, Temp: 60°/60°, Time: 41:17, Pace: 10:19 avg, Difficulty: medium, Felt: blah (poor sleep / horrible humidity)
Wednesday | October 15, 2014: rest
Thursday | October 16, 2014: 9 m run
Loc: Millenium Trail to Nippersink FP and back, Temp: 57°/56°, Time: 1:32:34, Pace: 10:17 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: great after 3ish miles
Friday | October 17, 2014: teaching strength class + 16.5 m run (first half w/Bobbi)
Strength: Cone and one dumbbell + boxing, Difficulty: medium, Felt: great
Loc: Millennium Trail, Temp: 58°/58°, Time: 2:55:46, Pace: 10:39, Difficulty: medium, Felt: decent / normal delirium at end 
Saturday | October 18, 2014: 3 m run
Loc: hood, Temp: 42°/47°, Time: 29:28, Pace: 9:49 avg, Difficulty: easy, Felt: great
Sunday | October 19, 2014: 5 m run (incl. 6×400)
Loc: hood, Temp: 32°/36°, Time: 48:53, Pace: 9:47 avg, Difficulty: medium, Felt: good

Notes:

  • Afternoon running is just not my forte. It takes me so much longer to warm up than when I just roll out of bed and go. So odd. When does running (or exercising) feel naturally best to you?
  • I am starting to ramp up my mileage for Dallas Marathon training. Toward the end of  Milwaukee training, I was running 5-6 days a week, around 40 miles a week. I am going to continue to run 5-6 days, but try to get the mileage closer to 50 a week, so my long run doesn’t end up being the majority of my weekly miles. I’ve done this type of training in the past and it seems to work the best for me (and make me feel awesome)!
  • I feel this way all the time, but have been thinking about it more this week – it’s such a blessing to have friends to run with. My training partner, Kelly, meets me at 5:00 am (or earlier!). Bobbi came over and ran the first half of my long run with me this week. I enjoy the miles solo or with friends… but they do feel easier and faster with a friend there!

Link to Training Week 260

Trainer criteria

By , October 18, 2014 6:30 am

What do you think of the statement highlighted below?

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I read it in an article (pdf here) from the October issue of SELF, about a woman who thought she hated group exercise classes, but just had to find the right one – the Tracy Anderson Method. And as the paragraph above mentions, she was partially encouraged to try it by the way the trainer’s body looked. 

I’ve been thinking about that statement a lot. I am a certified personal trainer. I teach a strength class. I think if people decided to take my class based on that criteria, no one would take it.

Don’t get me wrong – I want the strong, muscular body I have, but I don’t really expect many else too. I am just not your typical trainer build – mostly of my own doing, and partially genetics. I will always have a larger, more muscular frame. And there are so many different body types in the classes I teach… I think it would be odd if we all had the same ideals for our body. 

But you do want a trainer with a body you can admire. One who works hard for results, and has a workout routine you get excited about. 

Hmm. 

Helper Cat makes the bed

By , October 17, 2014 5:05 pm

Helper cat not only assists in wrapping gifts and hair maintenance (<—that explains a lot, right?!)… he ALSO helps make the bed when we have house guests*! How helpful!

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Um…

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Or… not. Typical Helper Cat shenanigans. 

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My snister and her husband are coming to visit! AHHHH! They haven’t stayed at our house since… geesh. 2009? No way it’s been that long (corrected – the last time was in 2012)! However long it’s been, I am really excited they are coming!

Who was your last house guest?

I like that we live close enough to a big city that people come to visit us… then we make them stay in the suburbs, mauh ha ha. JUST KIDDING! It’s fun to go to the city with guests. 

Anyway. Back to Helper Cat. If only he could help do some other prep work, like cleaning the house… sigh. At least I don’t have to get it to Grandma Level clean! Heck! Maybe my snister doesn’t mind if I clean at all?!

*unless they are allergic

Random Thoughts Thursday 67

By , October 16, 2014 6:23 am
  • Woot, woot! I kind of can’t believe the Royals are going to the World Series! Rachel and I are convinced it’s because we “left” some good luck at the stadium when we were there in July. You know, I’ve been to Kansas City every year since 2002 and that was the first game I’ve ever attended (and Rachel’s first, too), so I guess the only way to test that theory would be for both of us to attend a game next year and see what happens. Ha ha. 

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  • Fun story – my mom’s parents owned a hotel near the Royals stadium the last time they went to the World Series (and won!). The hotel was called the “KC Stadium Inn.” My Grandma still had some of the shirts from there when I was in high school, and I was in to “vintage” stuff so I wore them all the time. Too bad I don’t have one anymore. My mom wore a hat from ’85 to the game we went to in July. WAIT! Is that what the good luck was?!

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  • And now so you know this is still my blog, let’s talk about running. Ha ha. Saturday’s half marathon was my 7th of the year! That is the most halves I’ve ever run in a year (I know, not many, but a fun stat for me)! I might make that 8, and run a half at the end of November to determine where I am at, pace-wise, for the Dallas Marathon. The only problem is that the half I am looking at is someplace where I have bad running juju. Ha. AND is by the same organization that hosted the half last weekend, so the course could potentially be measured wrong. 
  • Don’t forget… I have a $5 off code – KIM2015 – for the Wisconsin Half and full Marathon on May 2nd! I am already signed up for the half, and thinking about going for a PR next year!

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  • My tattoo is healing well! The redness went down right away on Monday. It sometimes itches, and just started to scab a bit last night (I really hope it doesn’t scab much and I don’t have to get it touched up). Oh, and does the font look familiar, now?

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  • Data made a pretty big fashion change recently! What do you think of it? Hee hee. Soooooo sophistiCATed. 

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Link to Random Thoughts Thursday 66

A bad place for a bad fit

By , October 15, 2014 11:55 am

In April I decided I wanted to get some blood work done. I had never had it done before, and thought it would be a good idea for several reasons: to get a health baseline, because I follow a specialized diet and wanted to see how that was affecting me, and most importantly, because I had been recently been feeling very fatigued in the sun and sweating out a lot more salt than normal. 

Per my health insurance, I had to get a physical in order to do this. When I called to make the appointment, I found out my regular doctor no longer practiced at the office I go to. I decided to try a new doctor in that office, because I had liked the first one so much, and because the office location is so convenient for me. 

This ended up not working out very well. The new doctor and I did not mesh. At all. 

He teased me about my paperwork. “It says here you are divorced and remarried!” Um… what? Why would you joke about that?

He teased me about my vegan diet, and asked ignorant questions that a doctor should know the answer to. “So, you eat fish, right?” Really, dude?!

He told me I needed to lose weight – which is fine – I did. I told him I was aware of that, and that I work out a lot (running 30+ miles a week, teaching strength classes, etc.), but struggle with binge eating. He recommended walking after dinner. “Oh,” I asked, “because that would be a good distraction from sitting on the couch eating snacks?” “No,” he responded,” because Europeans do that and they’re thin. You need to exercise more.” Um… did you listen to me AT ALL?!

Sigh. I was so frustrated. I’m not a super serious person, but apparently, I don’t want a sarcastic doctor (who is not a very good listener). 

It’s not like me to put up with “service” like this and not say something. But I was really there for a means to an end – to get my blood results and to ask about the salt issue (which, by the way, I had to ask him as he was trying to leave the room – he never asked if I had any questions – and which he blew off). So I didn’t say anything. I just knew I would be looking for a different doctor, or maybe clinic, the next time I need that sort of assistance. 

Why share this now? Eh, I’ve been thinking about this since April. It’s not my intention to share this to complain, but to say that while it put a bad taste in my mouth for that particular doctor, it didn’t for the healthcare system. I know quite a few people who are anti-doctor and I don’t want to be like that… I am just anti-bad fit (and that doctor could be just the right fit for someone else!).  Finding the right fit is hard (gah, especially with therapists!), but, it’s worth it. So my pep talk is… don’t give up!

Oh! And the blood work looked good! I was just low on vitamin B12, which is very common for vegans, and treatable with a vitamin supplement. 

I prefer the surprise

By , October 14, 2014 6:01 am

Thank you so much for all your nice comments on my new tattoo! It’s healing great! I will share a less “red” picture of it soon!

Social media makes it so easy for organizations to share information about their races – registration price increase warnings, changed course maps, parking directions, last minute tips, live updates on lead runners, and so on. Mostly, it’s great. If you can’t find information on their official site (or your email isn’t responded to, gasp!), you can contact them via social media, or see if someone else is asking the same questions. 

So I typically follow the races I am signed up for or thinking about doing, on Facebook, because I enjoy seeing this information. 

There is only ONE thing I don’t want to see – the race medal. 

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Ha ha ha. I just like to be surprised! Seeing the race shirt or bibs is okay (but not preferred, for me), but for whatever reason… I don’t want to know what the medal looks like until it’s being placed on my neck!

Do you like seeing the race “bling” before you receive it?

Keep Running

By , October 13, 2014 8:02 am

Yesterday I had a chance to do something small to celebrate recent marathon (and half marathon!) success and my general love of running/being active! It’s something I have been considering for a year

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I got my first tattoo!

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I saw this the text “keep running” on a tattoo online over a year ago, and haven’t stopped thinking about it since. I took that as a sign that I was committed to it and it was time to get inked!

A few friends gave me recommendations for local tattoo parlors and I chose to go to Good Family Tattoo in Antioch (Illinois). I am super pleased with the experience and LOVE how the tattoo turned out!

I asked my artist, Elisa, if she had any tips for a first-timer and she said “just remember to breathe.” Basic, but it was a good tip! And it made me laugh, since I say that a lot in the strength classes I teach. 

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Of course, the tattoo is tiny, so it only took 10-15 minutes*! It didn’t hurt much at all – just felt like a bit of pinching. I was surprised by how quickly it was over (twss)!

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I can see how people get addicted to getting these. They’re fun and easy. I already have another style in mind that I like…

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I will probably think that one over for a year or two, as well though! Ha ha. 

*When I called to ask about getting this, they recommended just coming in as a walk-in (right when they open at noon) since my tattoo was so small and simple, and I had a font in mind (BONUS POINTS to anyone who remembers where that font is from!). So the whole experience was around fifty minutes long – getting there, signing paperwork, showing the design, then having Elisa recreate it using the font online and getting the stencil ready, putting it on, going over care instructions, paying, etc. Elisa actually told me that most people get tattoos on top of their shoulder blade or on top of their shoulder, so we looked at those spots too, but Steven and I both really liked it in this area. I’m happy Steven came with me and helped me pick out just the right spot!

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