The Family Over-Achiever

M.D.?  Check.

Working on his MBA?  Check.

Runs barefoot like a crazy chicken everyday? Check.

0% body fat? Check.

Ran a 1/2 marathon with just hours notice?  Check.

Since the “over-achiever” spot is taken in our family, I’m happy to take the “please-help-me-get-through-this-day-without-a-melt-down” spot.

David ran his first 1/2 marathon on Saturday!  He and his friend decided to run it just a few days before.  Unfortunately, the roads were wet (which is very, very bad for barefoot running as it softens your skin and can rip it up easily) so he ran in his Vibrams.

He had a great time and ran it in 1 hour and 46 minutes.

Did I mention he was 1/2 way through his 1/2 marathon before I even rolled out of bed?

Yeah.  I felt super productive that day.

Is now a good time to mention that we’re running in the Ragnar Relay?  (It is a relay race where you and 11 of your sweaty friends will run about 200 miles over a 24 hour period.)

ME.  RUNNING.  YES.  ME.

I blame David’s sweet talking ways and peer pressure for convincing me to run in this!  I have fun friends doing this!  It’s going to be a party!  I’m only doing for the socialization you know . . . you know I don’t run!

I am so embarrassed to admit how out of shape I am.

To stay in my target hart range, my runs are more like speed walks with bouts of running.

People, I’m currently running a 15 minute mile.

I know that doesn’t even make sense, because how can you RUN a 15 minute mile?

You can’t.  You literally have to WALK it.

Oh my.  Please don’t let any of my team members be reading this post!

I SWEAR I’ll get my butt in gear!  I have nine weeks to make it happen!

On a more random note . . .

I had David pose for me for one of my technical assignments this week.  Honestly, this image was one of the hardest assignments I’ve had at AAU!  My octabox is really big (it is 6 feet in diameter) so it is challenging to fit it in the right space.   The key light was relatively easy to set up . . . the back light however . . . was a nightmare!  Let’s just say that after about an hour of moving my back light all over and trying several test shots, and trying every angle, I know of 278 ways to NOT place the bounce light in my kitchen!  I ended up placing my light in the dining room (it also joins up with the kitchen) and I bounced it off the ceiling in the far corner.  Would you have ever guessed this image was that complicated to light?

Since we had the strobes set up, I took a pictures of Paris as well.

She is such a cute dog.  I can almost feel her soft fur on my monitor!

Even though Paris is like 110 in dog years, she’s still got it!  That dog will go to any heights for a treat!

There you have it.  Even my dog is an “over-achiever.”

According to “Daily Mile” I Have Five Friends

Hello!  I’m here!  Did you miss me?  🙂  I missed you!  ALL OF YOU!  Happy Valentine’s Day!  (Hannah has been spending nine hours a day for the last few days making Valentine’s Day cards . . . NOT KIDDING.  Each one is a totally new concept, so as you can imagine, one Valentine takes about two hours to make, and I’ve had to make a few runs to the store for more craft supplies.)

Lately, my life has been extra full, and extra dull at the same time . . . not a good formula to get my blog on.

But, I’m back!

Did you notice the new widget on my sidebar?  Um.  Yeah . . . so I started running.  Sort of.  I felt so GUILTY sitting on the couch watching House Hunters International day after day, while my husband ran mile after mile.  It doesn’t help that he’s lost a total of . . . wait for it . . .

31 POUNDS!

I know what you are thinking!  WHERE IN THE WORLD DID HE HAVE 31 EXTRA POUNDS HANGING AROUND?

I’m not sure, it really is a conundrum.  His cheeks lost a bit (both sets!) and also his waist is all I can figure!

Not one to be left out, (Hello, did I not mention he lost weight while watching TV and movies?)  I decided to get my butt off the couch and enjoy my shows on the run.  As you can see, I don’t really run fast . . . but I’m getting my heart into shape, and soon, I will be picking up the pace.  As a little side note for any of you “runners” or “exercisers” out there, David just read a book by another doctor who was a runner and it was fascinating.  (To him of course, I didn’t actually read it. I’m just the messenger!)  This doctor stated that you should only exercise your heart between 50%-75% of your maximum heart rate.  So basically, my maximum heart rate is 187 (you take 220 minus your age to get your maximum heart rate, or you can get a more accurate maximum heart rate with a cardiac stress test) and I keep my average heart rate during my runs between 140 and 152.  This is well within the 50%-75% range.  Why is it important to exercise and keep your heart rate in this range?

BECAUSE YOU BURN FAT.

Hello.  SIGN.  ME.  UP.

Anything more (like if I were to have an average heart rate of 170 and up) and you burn up your glycogen reserve.  THAT MEANS YOU BURN ENERGY.  Please, do not sign me up for that one!

David talked me into signing up for Daily Mile, which is like a watered down version of facebook.  I have five friends on it.  TOTAL.   I know three of them personally, and two internet friends.

What I’m saying is . . . PLEASE JOIN ME!  I have no friends!  I mean, facebook tells me differently, but apparently, I have no exercise friends on Daily Mile!

And I would like to leave you with this last little nugget of info . . .

David came across this video about sugar (specifically fructose) and how it is “Pure, White, and Deadly.”  Even if you don’t think you’re eating sugar, you are!  IT IS IN EVERYTHING!  This lecture is so interesting, it held my attention for 30 minutes at one time, which is like 1/3 of the way through the video!

Enjoy!

Salt Flats

Last year, when we moved back to Utah from Kansas, I mentioned to David that one of the things on my bucket list was to visit the Salt Flats which are West of SLC.

They are amazing, and it’s a popular location for people to come look at tons, and tons of salt. 🙂

Because I am a Probst at heart (which by definition is synonymous with being a lover of “all things salt”) I knew I needed to see the world’s salt mecca.  🙂

It only took a mere three hours to drive to this spot out in the middle of nowhere, but it was a poppin’ place when we got there!

The kids loved all the open space to run, and run and run . . .

But they did not like it when they both fell down on the gritty sharp salt crystals which drew blood.

And I’m just going to point out the obvious . . . SALT and BLOOD are a bad mixture as evidenced by their uncontrollable cries.

I love this face SOOOO much.

This is not our car, but it was beautiful against the white salt and blue skies as it drove out on the salt.

This little bullet is actually a motorcycle.  You see, we happened to drive out the Salt Flats during the very time some people were trying to break the international land speed record for motorcycles.  This motorcycle is encapsulated in this bullet-like-thingy to make it more aerodynamic.  The world record for motorcycle speed is 367 MPH.  This motorcycle had to beat that speed by 1% to officially “break the record” so it had to get up to 371 MPH that day.

Bummer, it only made it to 366 MPH and we were all so disappointed.  I mean, we drove ALL THE WAY OUT THERE and it couldn’t even go 4 MPH faster to break the world record?!  🙂

Oh, and guess what else?  An air show was going on in Wendover as well!  Turns out we picked a good day to drive out to the Salt Flats!

David enjoyed a little run WITH shoes (as many of you know, he is a barefoot runner) protecting his feet from the sharp salt crystals.

After our nice little outing, we drove a few more miles (and by a few, I mean like five) to Wendover, Nevada for dinner.

It’s fun to discover Utah.  Maybe we’ll stay a while.

I’m bursting at the seams to do a photo session on the Salt Flats, any takers?

You Are As Old As You Are Flexible (Help Me!)

Hello.  I’m back.

I’m not even sure where to begin, (a lot has happened in the last week!) so I’ll just start with today.  Today is Wednesday, AKA “Ballet Day” to my little one.  Hannah would take ballet everyday if she could, but at this point (husband fresh out of medical school) I’m afraid paying for daily classes would break the bank.  This summer, the ballet school advanced Hannah one level, so now she has a new group of girls to dance with who are a year older and little taller than she is.  Soon, she will refer to these new girls as her “friends” because they dance and wear pink, but as of today, she couldn’t even remember her new teacher’s name.

Every time I walk into the dance school,  I am keenly aware that  I am one of the largest people in the building.  Yes, I know, 90% of the people surrounding me are 18 and under and have 0% body fat (part of the ballet territory) but it is still a fact and it does NOT make me feel awesome.

In fact, after both of the kids went down for their naps, David and I pulled out our favorite pilates 20 minute workout and worked out our way under-worked abs.  During the DVD, Mari Windsor (of Windsor Pilates) told us to stretch our legs up in the air (while flat on our backs) straight as an arrow.

Yeah.  Right.  David and I both demonstrated what a “broken arrow” should look like. Then, in this very non-flexible moment for me, a conversation from ballet last week popped into my head.  An older dancer (and I mean post 70 years old) said, “You are only as old as you are flexible.”

Oh my.  I think my flexibility (lack thereof really) is going to kill me.

I’m working on losing the extra baby weight that I never lost with Hannah and my flexibility because it is the right thing to do.  I hate not fitting into my clothes.  I hate feeling self conscious.  I hate feeling frumpy.  And I really hate carrying around this extra weight for no reason.  I always try to remember this statement,  “Nothing tastes as good as being skinny feels” but seriously, these red vines I ate while writing this post tasted SO GOOD.

The Crazy Chickens

I never get up before 6:30 AM.  Ever.

Hannah sure tries her best to get me out of bed before 6:30 everyday, but I have a way of sleeping though all her chit chat.

Dallin understands my needs, and never wakes me up before I’m ready.  He’s a cool cat like that.

I like to refer to these people here (please take note of all the crazy runners) as “crazy chickens.”

These are all people in my neighborhood; all of them rip roaring and ready for an early 5K run on Memorial Day.

Have you ever wondered what a race looks like from the front?

Well, wonder no more!  I placed my life on the line and laid flat on my back and held my breath while people jumped over me.  It was a stampede I tell you!

David represented our family in this run.  Obviously, I could have used my superwoman strength and skills to run in the 5K as well, but my job is to take pictures, right?  That’s what I told David anyway . . .  I talked David out of running in the race bare foot (his feet are not ready for that yet) so he wore his VFF’s.

Now, please take note of our ROCK STAR 80 year old neighbor.  He passed David on the second mile . . . but this guy is not your regular 80 year old man.  He averaged a little over a nine minute mile on this run.

Seriously, he is such an inspiration.  Talk about someone living life!

Hannah represented us as well . . . she ran a mile.  GO HANNAH!

This is David demonstrating his very quiet run . . .

And now here are two of my favorite peeps!  Go David!  Go Luone!  Way to represent the VFF’s!

Timpanogos Cave

Over the weekend . . .

We took the kids to Chuck E Cheese’s, which was our first time there since we were kids.  Oh.  My.  It was kid heaven.  The food was overpriced and average, but the kids loved every second on the rides.  At one point (before dinner mind you) Dallin climbed up the slide, and to our surprise, another child left a PUDDLE of pee for him to crawl into.

Oh.  My.  GROSS.

Of course I didn’t have extra clothes for him (Why would I?  He never leaks and never needs a bib, so I don’t pack extra clothes every time I leave the house!) so we stripped him down to his diaper and let him run around.

Boy did we ever feel like white trash.  Fortunately, the shirt was fine, but still . . . a baby running around in a shirt and a diaper in a public place just screams white trash to me.

On Saturday we hiked up to Timpanogos Cave (for those of you not familiar with Utah, it is cave in American Fork Canyon on the North end of Timpanogos Mountain.  The cave sits at 6,730 feet, and the hike is 1 1/2 miles rising 1,065 feet) and Hannah hiked the entire way up, complaining that her legs were tired almost the entire way.  (Poor kid, we only had one backpack for Dallin, but even if we had one for Hannah, neither one of us would have volunteered to carry her up!)   I planned on taking my camera, but at the last minute decided not to.

Really.  It was a good choice.  The hike is steep, and long (about an hour and a half hike uphill) and with kids, and all the extra hud we were carrying up (for the kids, who are needy) it would have been a pain.

But . . . the view is AMAZING.  I plan to hike this without the kids just to take pictures of the valley (where we live) from the mountain.  We did have David’s phone, so we got a few snapshots.  You might find this interesting, (because I know I did) but I am LAME, as in DO NOT KNOW HOW, to take pictures with a phone.

Silly.  Yes?

You would think that manipulating the camera in various ways (like I do) would make me an expert at all things techie (especially cameras) but you know what?  When we were driving home, I asked to see the pictures I took of David and the kids on the VERY-STEEP-DANGEROUS-TRAIL and there weren’t any.  After I accused David of deleting them, I realized I may not have successfully taken any.

Blast.

This is what we did get:

I know, it’s terrible quality, but can we just look past all that and focus on the valley between the mountains?  That’s where we live.  🙂

The cave was fascinating to David, Hannah, and me, but Dallin was bored out of his brains and a little past bedtime when we entered the cave which made him extra pleasant.  You can’t take in baby carriers that have metal on them, so we had to hold the squirmy kid in a tight (and at times, claustrophobic) cave for 50 minutes while we waked through it.  (It’s a big cave.)

The last five minutes in the cave he screamed “Mommy!” and “Binkie!”  and “Tigger!” over, and over again, until everyone in that cave knew exactly what he wanted.

Note to self: Never take the kids on a hike when you can’t use the baby carrier the entire way.  Never take the kids when it’s past bedtime.  Never.

The highlight of the trip for me came a day later when Hannah was talking to Brian on the phone.  She told him, “Uncle Brian, do you know what stalactites are?  They grow from the ceiling and stalagmites grow up from the floor.”

I have a feeling this is just the beginning of her her knowledge eclipsing mine.  I don’t think I knew the difference .  .  .

Now you know I have to watch everything I say because she is paying attention!

Oh, and we hiked to Timp Cave in our Vibram Five Fingers.  It was quite nice actually.  At this point in the post, I would actually POST a picture of David in his five fingers, but  you see, I’m retarded when it comes to cameras on phones.

Random Weekend

Oh boy. This week is slipping away from me. I meant to post about some fun things this past weekend, but you know . . . where did the time go?

On Friday night, Hannah and I went to the musical “Singing in the Rain” in Lehi to see my good friend Bethany who starred in it. This was Hannah’s first play, and let me tell you, SHE LOVED IT. She giggled, and rooted for everyone. We were splashed by real rain that fell from the ceiling, and that was probably her favorite part along with all the singing and tap dancing. 🙂 She was so giddy with excitement, her little body was about to burst, and part of the “bursting” was confessing her undying love for me no less than 98 times . . . that was my favorite part. Now she wants to learn how to tap dance so she can join a musical too.

On Saturday, I had an idea hit me over the head. It was like a persistent itch: I had to execute my idea to relive my brain of this cool concept.

I called Brian. (Naturally, I expect him to be available anytime I’m struck with a concept to photograph.)

I left him a message telling him my idea. I told him to clear his schedule for the next couple of hours because I was the most important thing in his life right at that moment.

Ahem. (Usually when you have to spell something out, it’s probably news to other people.)

He called me back, telling me he was on a plane, just about to take off.

Um . . . Hello? What part about “clear your schedule” wasn’t clear? And, to add insult to injury, he was off to meet his new girlfriend’s parents. (He meets EVERYONE’S parents . . . this is not serious yet.) I know my new rank now.

On Saturday afternoon, David and I went for our first barefoot run. He toughed it out and actually went barefoot for the majority of the run. I was smart and wore my five fingers from the start. 🙂 It was our first “date run.” It was actually fun, and totally apparent that David is in way better shape than I am.

Saturday night, we finally got to spend some time with our good friends Marshall and Jill. They live five houses down from us now, (this is a crazy coincidence, since we haven’t lived in the same city or state for over a decade) but it took three months for our schedules to align. We had such a great time chatting, and just hanging out together. It really is amazing how everywhere you move, there are cool people everywhere you go. We’ve been fortunate to make life long friends everywhere we’ve been. Marshall and Jill have been part of our lives since we’ve been married.

On Sunday, a really nice person got up to bare their testimony (which was really sweet) and they talked about how challenging it was to be in school full time, while their wife was in school part time, and they had a child. If I had heard this before med school, I would have thought, “Oh my! How do you even deal with it?” But, sadly, we are almost POST medical school (did you read that! SIX more weeks!) and I am totally JADED. I looked over at David and whispered, “Whatever . . . try medical school . . . average of 32 credits a semester, and 80 hour work weeks during clinicals . . . did I mention I’m in school part time too and we have two kids?”

David whispered back and me saying, “Where is your compassion?”

You see, that’s the thing, I lost compassion somewhere along the way . . . it could have been when the school screwed us over, not providing nearly enough loan money (this is not an opinion, this is a fact) or the grueling hours David has spent away from us studying, or the FOUR (COUNT THEM FOUR) cross country moves we HAD TO MAKE last year, plus the MONTHS we’ve had to spend apart as a family while David completed rotations elsewhere. My compassion was swallowed up in the process of being jaded by medical school.

I’m trying to be a better person. Maybe my outlook will improve when I see the light at the end of the never ending tunnel of medical school in six weeks.

Let’s hope.

Oh Yes. Yes I Did.

Apparently, great minds think alike.  On Easter Sunday, I was talking with two of my brothers (big family get together) about barefoot running.  Turns out, WE ALL BOUGHT A PAIR of fivefingers this week.

We were all a bit surprised to find out we each had a pair.   Now, I have two brothers, my husband, father-in-law, and friend who own a pair.  Wanna join the fun and start running “barefoot” too?

I love them.  I actually like running “barefoot.”

The workout regimen is very doable.  Too run “barefoot” you start out running every day or every other day for FIVE MINUTES.

Five minutes friends.  You can do that, right?  I can do anything for five minutes.   I could probably hold my breath that long.  Well, I’m not gonna try, but maybe I could.  🙂

The second week you increase your time to 10 MINUTES.

Yep.

10 minutes is all you want to run during your second week of training.

Then, the third week you stretch your running time to 15 minutes.  OK, I’m sure you’re all math-aletes, you can do the math from here on out.

It’s important to transition into barefoot running  S-L-O-W-L-Y.  I’m not referring to your actual speed here, I’m talking about easing into it.

You have to listen to your body, and as soon as your skin hurts, STOP.  It’s protecting underneath your skin and preparing your body for this rude awakening.

You will have lactic acid in places you never knew you had muscles.  It feels AWESOME.

Born to Run

Guest Post By David:

Emily asked me to write a post about my new-found passion.  Running barefoot.  While I was doing my Family Medicine rotation, I heard someone talking about a book called Born to Run.  I didn’t think much of it other than some shoes that were mentioned in the book.  I looked them up online when I got home and thought they were rather strange.  I didn’t think much more of it until I met someone in the operating room that competes in triathlons.  Whether it’s a perfect coincidence, or the fact I’m starting to think a little more seriously about my own mortality (and I want to live a long and healthy life . . . mobile, with as little physical restriction as I can manage up till the day I die . . .) I started thinking about running a marathon.

I’ll be the first to tell you I’ve said the following statement out loud, “Why would anyone want to run a marathon?”  This is not the first time I have had to dine on my own speech.  I’ve become quite accustomed to the taste of my own words.  Anyway, I decided to get the book.  I couldn’t put it down.  It really spoke to me.  Not because I’ve been a lifelong runner, (in fact, I have always hated long distance running) but because I’ve been looking for a way to maintain my health that I would continue to do for the rest of my life.  I’m not interested in something I’ll only do for a month or 90 days.  I’m interested in a life change that will have lifelong benefits.  The best exercise in the world is the one you enjoy doing . . . you will end up continuing to do it.  The best exercise is completely useless if it’s not done.

Throughout the book, everything just made sense.  After finishing the book, I have discovered an entire “underground” community/movement of barefoot running.  The stories are countless and sound very similar.  People with chronic running injuries have been finding relief while running.  All they had to do was kick off the shoes!

Obviously, there are risks in running barefoot.  Stepping on glass, a jagged rock, or a hypodermic needle . . . it could ruin your day.  The first thing to remember is to start slow.  “Listen” to your feet.  There’s a reason we have so much sensation on the soles of our feet.  Many of the muscles in our feet and lower legs have atrophied because they have been rendered useless by our shoes.  It’ll take some time to get them back.  You’ll feel them getting stronger the more you work them.  I’ve only been doing this for about a week, but I have already experienced noticeable benefit.  My posture has improved, my lower back stopped hurting, and I feel lighter on my feet.

Check out this video:

I don’t know about you, but I’m a lifelong convert.  There are many websites out there that talk about the benefits of barefoot running . . . check them out!

UPDATE

For a little help on the transition from heel striking to “barefoot” running, check out the following page.