27 October 2011

Nobody Puts Emu in the Corner

Now I've had the time of my life...
and I owe it all to you...

I really appreciate the tremendous response on my Garmin bitch-session, I got some great advice about an elusive 'average pace' setting (thanks, Jeff, Tricia, RoadWarrior and Lauren). And was shamed into reading my manual (thanks, Patrick). And was reminded about traveltime to and from outer space (thanks, Jill). I used my Ivy League degrees and your pointers and figured it out. Go, me.

This newly-discovered setting made my speedwork Tuesday so much more enjoyable! (skip ahead if that's all you're interested in) Especially since I did it after walking around the zoo all day long. I spent a split-second getting twisted about the prospect of tired legs, but a quick slap reminded me that these guys are my priority right now...

So I shelved my stress, and we had a blast.

Our closest zoo has rides. I never force my kids to see the animals as a condition of getting to go on the rides...I hear a lot of other parents loudly stating this requirement upon arriving at the gates. For me, whatever the kids want at the zoo is what we do. So it was rides first...most importantly the Outback Express train. Miss C had been seriously screeching for hours about seeing these guys..

Wallaroos...bigger than a wallaby, smaller than a kangaroo.
None of them were moving. 
It is debatable whether or not they were lawn ornaments or living creatures.

Big G and I appreciated how the zoo tried to authenticate the Australian Outback experience...

And I never knew how awesomely an emu's camouflage is suited to the California chaparral landscape...
That hairy-ish, haystack-y grey-brown thing is the emu.
I know... you can't hardly see him even when you click to biggify...
see? camouflage in action :)

Big G insisted I take this exciting picture of a motionless alligator...

But I was more interested in cute things like this...

I swear this is the first-ever zoo visit where one of my kids did not fall in on the Lily Pad Crossing.
For real. A miracle.

And action shots like these fighting bats...
One on the left was just a bully. 
Dude on the right was just hangin' out... and other dude just started going nuts on him... 
all males at this zoo (it's right there in front of you, in case you hadn't noticed)...

And these grooming apes...
I started giggling so hard.
This one ape totally looked like he was sunning his balls. And he was. 
Then the other one started grooming him... picking crap out of his groin area...
that is what you see here :)...clicking will enlarge.

But the highlight of the day had nothing to do with male mammal genitalia. The highlight was feeding time at the otter enclosure!
Check out this movie for all the action and squeals of delight!
I love otters!

At the end of the day, when everyone else was finally in bed, it was time to get my speed on. And I did. Total distance was about 5 miles. After a mile and a half warm-up, it went like this...

2 x 0.25 mi with 0.25 mi rest between.... 1st one @ 7:36 pace, 2nd one @ 7:27 pace
2 x 0.6   mi with 0.25 mi rest between.... 1st one @ 7:39 pace, 2nd one @ 7:33 pace

And I followed that with a mile and a quarter cool-down. The workout didn't destroy me. Don't get me wrong...it was hard! The idea was to hit 5K pace... and this was faster than that for sure.

I must say this increased the level of my awe for some of my Nuun teammates. I already knew them to be fast, stellar athletes, but Dorothy (incredible mom of 3 who pushes a triple stroller while running a 6:05 mile), Emily (super sweaty Ironman), Susan (nurse on the run) and the aforementioned Lauren (relay-running goddess) hold this pace for 26.2 miles! While elite/world-class athletes are waayyyyyy faster, I find myself more impressed, more 'wowed' by what I'll call "ordinary" people who are capable of extraordinary things. And running a seven and a half minute mile for an entire marathon is definitely extraordinary in my book! 

Here's wishing those ladies the very best in the upcoming weeks! A few of them are running the  Marine Corps Marathon or the  NYC Marathon ... and Emily is still being a sweaty animal while rehabbing a freshly-broken foot :( sad face for the broken foot part. Go, ladies! You are amazing and inspiring :)

My Moving Comfort Giveaway ends tomorrow (Friday 10/28) at midnight. Be sure to enter here!

And I've noticed that I am startlingly close to 500 followers. There will definitely be some kind of super weird cool giveaway once that happens! Encourage your irreverent friends to check out Taking It On and follow if they know what's good for them ;-)


  1. Garmins have owner manuals??? (ok i knew this, I lost mine a long time ago)


  2. Fun zoo pictures! You keep up all that speedwork and you will get FAST! I think you are getting so many followers because you make such cool videos :)

  3. What a great day! Looks like you all had a blast. :) And look at you, Mrs. Speedy McSpeederson! :) I'm with you...I'm constantly amazed by what "real" people can do.

  4. I hear you! I just did a quick interval workout on the tm and my sprint intervals were like a 7:30 pace....I could never imagine running that pace for miles....and miles!

    Nice work on YOUR workout!

  5. PS Bonus points for the Dirty Dancing reference ;)

  6. Further proof that my current mock morning workout is well, a mockery of actual exercising folks!

    Hooray for the zoo! We used to visit the elephants at our zoo rather quickly as the male was usually out and was always VERY happy to see us!

  7. You my friend are fast!
    wow I am impressed!
    I just did speedwork and there was no 7 on my garmin I can tell you that!

    I love the ZOO!
    My kids would watch those bats all day!
    I dont think we have bats at the LA Zoo...

  8. You are getting pretty darn fast girl! and did you know that otters are one of my most favouritest animals on the planet! I just adore them :D thanks for sharing!!!!

  9. Your crew is adorable! Glad you got the Garmin all figured out. didn't know there was such a thing as a manual! ; )

    We took the kids to Australia last year and got to go to an amazing wildlife park where they hand fed kangas, etc. They loved it.

  10. Great zoo photos!

    But pandering to us with cute photos does not undo the pain and suffering caused by getting "(I've Had) the Time of My Life" stuck in my head for DAYS!


  11. I'm glad you've figured out the Garmin situation - and of course, I'm glad I could help!! Hopefully average pace keeps working well for you. :)

    Also - you give me too much credit. But thank you for your incredibly kind words! I'm very flattered. It took me many years of running to get to where I am. Keep up those speedy runs and you will definitely get faster! Seriously - great job on the speedwork!

  12. Marjorie, Your splits look great! fast is all relative here my friend. I'm impressed. And your kids are gorgeous! I am in awe of all of these ladies as well. And 500 wow, you are just shooting up there lately. For every follower you gain, I lose. Ha! One of these days I'll find time to give out some blog lovin' to all these great blogs. IN the meantime, I'm just trying to stay on top of things around here. You're awesome Marjorie. Sorry I don't get by as much as I used to...I love your blog as always.

  13. Ahhh, the zoo!! Was just there with my 2-year old, LOVE IT! We dont have lily pads to jump across and fall into though. Did you have to buy Dippin' Dots for your kiddos, too?

    Nice job on the speedwork, that is definitely "fast" and I hope it built a little confidence in ya!!

    Enjoy the rest of your time off with the kids!

  14. I have some thoughts on your intervals - hit me up.

    - The Shamer

  15. I love taking the kids to the zoo! Kids do come first! You are getting so fast! I'm very impressed!

  16. Sounds like a nice day!

    We need to go to the zoo before all the animals head inside for the winter - much better to see them out in the fresh air!


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