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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Running: Beating the Voice Inside My Head

I've never been an athlete.  I've never played a team sport with the exception of seventh grade volleyball.  Back then, everyone made the team so they had to take me.  Was I good?  No.  Was I distracted?  Always.  That's it - there's my team sports.


As for individual sports, well I took private golf lessons but that ended with me throwing my clubs.  I bowl a kids bowling ball and my scores are embarrassing.  I've always loved riding my bike but who doesn't, right?  I adore downhill skiing and have for years - the adrenaline when I tuck down the hill is phenominal.  I'm not a skilled skiier but I have a true love for skiing.


So to running: rewind to September of 2010, I was warming my lunch at work when a nice young man (an assistant to an agent and also a personal trainer) and I had a brief conversation about physical activity.  My memory is poor but I believe his suggestion was "Just walk on the treadmill at 4.0 for 30 minutes".  So I began.  Out to the shop I went, every other day, doing just as he'd instructed.  I slowly increased the speed and began to run.  Fast forward to the end of 2010, I was running on the treadmill.


Now how could this be?  Me, Anya, she who couldn't run on the track during P.E. in school.  How could I possibly be running?  Well I was and it felt great.  It took me some gumption to muster the ability to get off the treadmill and hit the road but in early 2011, I was running outside.  The fresh air was unbelieveable, noting my progress on my app's map was fulfilling and I just barely missed watching episode's of The Real Housewives of anytown on the treadmill.


I've run with a handful of friends, I've run in all weather elements, I've run along the water, I've run in the forest and I seem to run often from my home or office.  At home, it's my pup Zoe that keeps me going.  A 10 year old lab who lost her sister just last year, she was the runt of the litter so at nearly 45 lbs, she keeps up with me perfectly.  Sometimes she's met by neighboring dogs who want to protect their homes, other times we're jumping over live-stock droppings on the side of the road.  Did I disclose it's Pure Country at home?  From my office I can schedule in runs before or after appointments and I have the luxury of running on sidewalks with street lights partnered with a central location allowing for endless new routes.


November brought two milestones for me.  The first, I totaled 55.2 miles of running during the month.  The second, at the last minute, I decided to step-up my game and run the Oly Trot on Thanksgiving Day in Olympia.  I had some apprehension but nevertheless, I ran my first organized run and I felt quite triumphant crossing the finish line.  It wasn't about my final time, or my pace or anything other than: YOU CAN DO IT.  And I did it.


So as I recount my origin of running, I'm pleasantly surprised to see I will have logged over 300 miles of running in 2011.  I feel a goal is necessary to stay challenged but I'm not quite sure what I'll determine my goal to be.  For this moment I'll remain content in knowing - I can run.



"It's very hard in the beginning to understand that the whole idea is not to beat the other runners. Eventually you learn that the competition is against the little voice inside you that wants you to quit." -George Sheehan

Monday, December 12, 2011

Annual Blood Drive Another Success

In October, over 30 people from the Olympia area participated in the RE/MAX Parkside Affiliates Mobile Blood Drive in association with the Thurston County REALTORS Association.  Words cannot express my appreciation to each and every person who made an effort to donate blood or assist with the drive.  Thank You just doesn't seem to be enough.


When I originally pitched the affiliation to TCRA, my initial idea was for one REALTOR office from the Association host a mobile blood drive each month.  If you're interested in scheduling a mobile blood drive, please contact me and I'll provide to you the necessary information.


The required 56 days has nearly passed so those of you who donated at our mobile blood drive, you are eligible to donate again on or after Wednesday, December 14, 2011.  Please schedule your appointment here or contact the Puget Sound Blood Center at 800-398-7888.


Every day patients across Western Washington need at least 900 units of blood.  Every donation counts.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Thurston County Christmas Tree Tips

My family has a tradition of selecting a tree with some very good friends of ours just after Thanksgiving.  There’s nothing like going directly to the farm and cutting down your own tree.  We have so much fun at the tree farm with our kids and friends.  It’s really become an event with camera’s and warm goodies.  I thought you may enjoy these tips if you haven’t already selected your tree.  You won’t get a tree any fresher and you can pick the perfect tree at one of our local tree farms.

What to Bring:
ü Saws and Equipment – Saws are usually provided, and most will cut the tree for you (usually for a small fee) if you’d rather not cut it yourself.  Most farms also provide wheelbarrows or other tools for transport.  Many will wrap your tree and; tie it on your car for you.  I recommend you bring your own rope or bungee cords with you; they may not have it or run out.
ü     Pack for a day trip – It’s fun to make an event of choosing your Christmas tree by packing some of your favorite snacks, hot chocolate or warm apple cider and hand towels or disposable wipes.
ü     Dress in warm clothes and hiking boots or old athletic shoes.  Bring heavy gloves to protect your hands and a jacket or other garment to protect your arms.  Bring layered clothing, and some extra socks and a blanket.  Dress for the weather.
ü     Remember the camera.  You may want to capture those memories you’re making.
ü     Protect your car – Bring a sheet of plastic or an old blanket to cover the roof of your car and protect the paint and finish.

Where to Go:
  ü Barneys Noble Trees, 2012 South Bay Road, Olympia WA 98506
  ü Johnson's Smokehouse, 8212 Diagonal Road SE, Olympia WA 98501
     ü Tom's U-Cut, 8137 Rainier Road, Olympia WA 98501

What to Get:
ü     Generally, the tree farm should have a variety of trees such as Douglas Fir, White Pine, Blue Spruce and Noble.

How to Pack it Up:
ü    Shaking – The trees have been living outside all year, and may well have become home to spiders.  Get the farmer to evict Charlotte (and her web) by shaking the tree on their mechanical shaker.
ü    Baling – Many farms also have baling (tree wrapping for transporting) or bagging for no fee or a small fee.