A Local HAUNT

Halloween is a fun holiday for the young and the old.  My favorite activities are those where we can have a few beers  fun AND take the kiddos along.  Saturday night we decided to make an appearance at a local Haunt (the professional term for an EXTREMELY decorated Halloween house) where they take the “holiday” to a level  of insanity at which most would be unable to afford in terms of $$ or time.  However, in order to even step foot on the sidewalk, I felt pressured wanted to make an effort to be festive.  Normally, I am a total wet blanket more conservative and would “opt out” of dressing up but as I get older, I also seem to find fun in the “little” things so was actually excited about the prospects.  Obviously the kiddos were already set up (photo below of my little pirates:   Aby & Michael and my “Angelic” niece, Alexis). 

However the old people adults needed a little help.  We tried to get creative in an effort to be economical.  Aby has been a vampire several times and we have two capes so I thought we could go as his & hers vampires but thankfully hubby is much more creative than and I and he opted to go as my “bite” victim.  Funny.  I was pretty pale with white make-up, a few blood drippings at the chin and sparkly glitter on top….hard to tell in this crappy photo.

Hubby actually has a bite on his neck if you can see it and loads of make-up on his face and  hands to make him look purplish and dead. 

  And we are off to the local Haunt……….

I must say I was impressed which doesn’t happen often.  The homeowner, is our computer geek guru and I have known him for several years.  Each Halloween, we get an informal invitation to visit the house and attend the SAT night party.  Normally, I am out-of-town at my parents and can’t make it but this year I came home early because Grandma was sick to go to the party.  I had seen the website and knew it was going to be over the top but the live version was so much better!  There was, of course, spooky music, over 200 spiders in and out of the house, a backyard grave yard, a casket with a skeleton and so much more that I could never in a million years do any real justice.

Fun time!  Aby was totally freaked by the spiders, Michael was freaked by everything a lot of different items but they also had a blast.  The host and hostess were also very nice and accommodating about showing off all their hard work.  Kudos to Bob & Family for all that they have done, their creativity and the wonder of their progression from the beginning of the process many, many years ago to what it is today.  Lots of time, $$, and creativity!

And just in case you too need a bit of help in the make-up removal department, it came off surprisingly easy with a baby wipe!

Cheers!                                                                                                                           Amanda – TooTallFritz

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Dogged Endurance

In order to fit everything into today that I wanted/needed, I had to get rolling in the middle of the night pretty early.  I was “slightly” tired since I haven’t slept since I got knocked up with Mr. Michael and the obligatory bathroom-blogger photo showed as much.

A few run essentials, if you are also running in the dark, are pictured below.  The Knuckle Lights are a great product which I highly recommend!  They really light up the night and the roads, so much better than a headlamp.  I am also loving the SPI-Belt since it even holds my humongous DROID phone.   

It was soooooo dark.  The older I get the more terrified  cautious I am in regard to the dark and the road conditions.  Today I was at my parents so had to run on a busy road to hit the less traveled country roads.  Once I hit the first country road I breathed a sigh of relief thinking I was in safer territory.  However, that feeling didn’t last long as I was barely into mile 2 when I heard a rustling in the corn field and “something” jumped out at me and freaked me out started running beside me!  I immediately went for my pepper spray since I had been bitten by 3 dogs in less than 4 months at the beginning of the year was being cautious but this LilWhiteDog was not out for blood but apparently just wanted to run.  I can appreciate that. 

I didn’t anticipate my friend to go too far, usually a friendly dog may run a 1/2 or full mile with me but never more than that before they turn back toward home or get distracted onto a new adventure.  However this LilWhiteDog was in it for the long haul.  I must say that it stressed me out slowed my progress as I was afraid it was going to get hit by a car or that it was running too far for its lil legs, or that it needed water, etc.  I greatly enjoyed the company and he certainly took my mind off the task at hand but I wanted the LilWhiteDog to go home where it would be safe and be loved and be able to rest!  I hit my turn-around at mile 5 and he also made the u-turn.  At this point, I was relieved thinking when we got back to where he initially joined me that he would go back home.  So I ran on thinking that he would be safe soon enough.  I did notice the LilWhiteDog to be unusually savy about life on the road.  He always ran into a ditch when a car was coming, he stopped and listened intently when a “mean dog” sounded its bark, and he just was incredibly intelligent and worldly for such a lil thing.  I was impressed. 

We get back to the road where my friend LilWhiteDog joined me and he kept running beside me.  We hit the busy road and I took my turn and prayed that he would stay but he followed.  I almost cried thinking he would never make it the length of BusyRoad without being hit by a car but he did.  And then he took the turn into the lakeside subdivision with me.  And then he turned into the driveway with me.  And then I closed the door to the house and prayed he would FINALLY go home.  But he didn’t.  LilWhiteDog jumped up on the door and started barking/whining.  Did I mention that the Parents just tore down the lakeside shack and built a NICE new house remodeled the cottage?  Did I mention that the Parents HATE don’t like dogs?   LilWhiteDog found the patio doors/windows to look into the great room.

LilWhiteDog wasn’t leaving.

A couple of hours later we left to go trick or treating and LilWhiteDog chased my car down the road, then stopped and walked back to my parents.

Several hour later we came home and didn’t see LilWhiteDog but then a lady power walking came down the street with a mysterious partner……LilWhiteDog.  I encouraged her to take him home and she laughed.  I was packing up the car and guess who came back.

Auntie Sara was strong-armed decided to take LilWhiteDog home back to Ft Wayne to see if she can pawn him off on one of her friends find him a home, otherwise he will be going to the Allen Co Animal Shelter tomorrow or Monday.  Aby and I are hoping Uncle David falls in love with him she finds him a good home.

Good-Bye and Good Luck my friend LilWhiteDog.

10.04 miles – 1:43:46 – This is super slow for me but I stopped many times to try to get photos in the dark with my flash which was a TOTAL FAIL didn’t work out, then I had to get off the road multiple times for either my safety of that of my running partner, plus I walked in the 7th mile for a little bit because  I felt like it my hips were tight.

“Run”way Fashion:  It was under 40 degrees so I needed long sleeves and went with my Nike Chicago 2016 Candidate City shirt which I still wear even though I’m the only one who wanted to the Olympics in Chicago we lost the bid.

And I tried out the new CW-X compression 3/4 quarter tights, which I really liked! 

Women’s 3/4 Stabilyx Tight – Black/Raspberry

The Stabilyx tights provide optimum targeted support to the core and knees. They’re ideal for activities with lateral motion such as skiing and snowboarding and for athletes seeking our best form of knee support. The patented CW-X Support Web™ bands together the muscles and ligaments of the lower leg to stabilize the knee and reduce vibration for increased efficiency. The CW-X Support Web™ also harnesses the midsection, supporting the lower abdominals, hips and back to channel power through the core. Variable compression facilitates circulation during and after activity, minimizing lactic acid build-up so that you can be active longer and recover faster.

I have been having issues with my hips and knees and just general lower leg aches/pain since the Plantar Fasciitis has reached the advanced stages.  Apparently, I am running funny my form is deteriorating.  I could definitely feel the added support, particularly in my hips and probably the part that I LOVED the most was that I didn’t have to pull them up one time!  That alone was worth the price!!!  I don’t know yet about the recovering faster part, I didn’t have time to lounge in them so don’t know if it really counts.   Photo below is “me” not a “stock” photo.

I definitely look forward to wearing them more in the future, now just wish I had more pink shirts cuz I am really picky like to match.

Cheers,                                                                                                                         Amanda – TooTallFritz

Lakefront Run _Chicago

It was rainy earlier today but Mother Nature knew you needed some photos and that my cheap ass I didn’t want to ruin my new phone in the rain so she was kind to me!  As with all lunchtime runs, I got ready in our ladies washroom.  Apparently I need a blogger-bathroom-photos 101 course cuz these photos were horrible the best I could get.

I hit the street for a dash to the lakefront path. On days like this I actually don’t HATE enjoy working downtown and being able to run at lunch when I can’t pry Mr. Michael off of me just can’t get it done at home.  The chore of getting to/from the lakefront is probably harder than the actual running.  I spend a good deal of time weaving around the uncool non-runners pedestrians, waiting at traffic lights and then finally I hit the lakefront at Monroe Harbor after crossing Lake Shore Drive (LSD).   The first glimpse of the lake and the sun attempting to peak out is refreshing.

I frequently head South toward McCormick Place because:  1)  It’s a less traveled route, most runners and tourists head North toward Navy Pier, Oak Street Beach, North Beach, etc.;   2)  The path is slightly off the water so if the weather is less than ideal, there is a bit of a shield between runner, water & elements;  3)  McCormick Place has a bathroom right off the path; and,  4)  Portions of the trail have a soft shoulder for my plantar fasciitis the injury prone .

As I hit the Museum Campus, still in Monroe Harbor territory, I noticed two “ship wrecked” vessels.  Remember last week when I planned to run the lakefront but ran Yankee Woods in the ‘burbs instead?   Well, it was because portions of the lakefront path were closed due to 25+ foot waves.   About a month ago when we had waves “almost” that high nobody was smart enough realized they should stay away from the water and several runners/bikers got swept into the lake.  This time officials closed the path  to protect the stupid people and apparently it was a good move…..these sail boats were destroyed by the waves.

Moving on into the tunnel under the drive to Museum Campus.

Coming out of tunnel….STUNNING view!

This is about a mile from McCormick, if I run to McCormick it’s a 6 mile trip, if I want 8, I go a little further.  I took a lot of photos in the beginning and then put the phone away to make up some time.  The last photo stop was actually on the return and I had to stop, climb up off the path and onto the lawn at the Shedd Aquarium to grab a crystal clear pic of the Chicago Skyline.  Now that’s priceless!

8.01 miles – 1:14:19 –  several street crossings to/from lake front, lots of photo stops and even stopped to take a photo of a group of tourists on their camera so everyone could get into the shot.  GREAT day to get out and run!

“Run”way Fashion:   Athleta Accelerate Tee (select sizes on a killer sale now!), Athleta Quick Step Capri, Feetures No Show Tab socks, Saucony Guide 5 shoes

Cheers,                                                                                                                        Amanda – TooTallFritz

Muscle Fuel is back in stock – AdvoCare

After a very long wait, a change in manufacturers, etc., the Muscle Fuel is back.  This product ROCKS and WORKS great, at least the old version did, can’t wait to try the new and improved version!  AdvoCare® Muscle Fuel

OVERVIEW

  • A synergistic blend of 28 vitamins, minerals, botanicals and other energy-producing intermediates that supports multiple metabolic processes*
  • Helps maintain & restore energy supplies during & after physical activity*
  • Supplies essential components for muscle gain*

Heated Seats…. Bum/Bun Warmers…..

It’s a rainy, dreary day in the CHI………

The traffic coming into the city is all jacked up because people can’t drive of the rain.  I had to drive in this morning rather than taking the train since it was crazy hair day at school and I had to make Aby look insane I was running late.

As I was sitting in traffic, shivering, I turned my seat heater up to high.  I was immediately thankful that I am a car snob enthusiast and have certain requirements for my “new to me” cars.    Those requirements are:  heated seats, moon roof & engine power, anything else is just a bonus.  If you have a POS older car that needs to be replaced, then I would highly recommend venturing into a market that has heat seats because some days it’s the small things that make a girl happy.

Hubby’s car actually has a heated steering wheel too!  If you are a cold hands/warm heart bitch  lady like myself, then that also might be a good “option” for you. 

And for the geeks (like me) who care,  General Motors employee Robert L Ballard invented heated seats1951, and patented them in 1955. Predating his invention were the less sophisticated “ventilated seats for vehicles,” invented in 1936 by Charles J Patterson.

Source:  Google Patents: BALLAKD Robert L. Ballard

 
Cheers,                                                                                                                             Amanda – TooTallFritz                                                                            amanda@tootallfritz.com

KT Tape FAIL….Plantar Fasciitis – Part I

I assume those of you who will be reading this VERY FIRST post on my NEW blog TooTallFritz.com, will be friends and family.  So you already know that I have been dealing with Plantar Fasciitis all summer and it sucks hurts badly and I am very frustrated.  I have been going to a foot surgeon since beginning of September who did a series of wrapping/taping sessions on my feet to determine if orthotics would help my situation.  The padding makes it feel like I’m literally walking on clouds and makes the pain dissipate immediately…..but I can’t shower while I am wearing the padding unless I bag my feet. 

After weeks of taping and my being happy with the results both in life and in running, he decided to cast me for orthotics. 

And now I am waiting for the lab to construct the orthotics….super special ones that are a hybrid for both running and real life.  “Normal” orthotics apparently aren’t good enough since I’m in the advanced stage where my feet throb with pain even while I am sitting.  Please don’t touch my heels and I definitely don’t want to walk or run on them!

After casting for the orthotics, I was once again getting thru with the taping/padding but alas that fell off last Thursday.  I was being cheap trying to make it thru without going back for another office visit copay to have the doc reapply the tape/pads so I opted to try the KT Tape.  They have a special taping method for Plantar Fasciitis and step by step instructions on how the stupid normal person can do it themselves.  No problem!  I mean, it stayed on for Kerri Walsh thru the rigorous sand volleyball tournaments at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, so I thought I could get one run in without a problem. 

My tape job didn’t look quite as intricate or professional as that of Ms. Walsh’s….I mean, I don’t have a trainer, just Aby and I working as a team.  We followed the directions and it was “sticking” and I left for a run. 

However, it didn’t stick for long!  I was happy to be  heading out the door for a run. 

Then things quickly went down hill.  The tape felt okay and I had minimal support but the “stick” didn’t last long.  I stopped to restick it right before mile 1, then by mile 1.2, I stopped and pulled it off all together (Sorry, I didn’t have the camera for a photo of the wilted mass of green KT tape flopping around my ankle).  I ended up pulling my shoe off to get rid of the tape and cutting my run short, knowing things would only get worse in the pain department after that. 

4.05 miles – 37:08 – Never stopped my watch but had 2 stops for KT tape malfunction, one turn around, and one leap into the ditch stop for a car that wanted to hit me.  Fun times running in the country!

Plantar Fasciitis defined  HERE & Plantar Fasciitis Prevention Tips HERE.

Most importantly, my outfit – “Run”way Fashion:  RunningSkirts.com Ultra Swift Skirt, Athleta Accelerate Tank, Feetures Light No Show Socks w/ Tabs (pink!), Saucony Guide 5 shoes.

If you have questions, comments or suggestions, feel free to post below or message me at amanda@tootallfritz.com

Cheers and Happy, PAIN-FREE running to all of you!                                                       Amanda – “Too Tall Fritz”