December 26th is the Saddest Day of the Year

Just like Monday is the worst day of the week.  You are as far away as possible from the best day of the year.   It's a horrible thought.  Luckily for me, I have the dangling carrot of my birthday (December 30) to keep me from being too morose about Christmas being behind me.

Christmas really is an essential time of year for my running-self.

96% of all my running gear is gifted to me at Christmas.  Last year I got my first ever running watch (a Garmin Forerunner 305) which completely changed the way I run (read: faster).  I also received a pair of Saucony Kinvara's after reading other blogger's rave about them (hated them) and the always elusive running shorts with pockets (not a successful pair because the pockets had no zipper or velcro -- I lost $5 the first time I wore them).

This year, the only running-related item on my wishlist was running books.  I requested this with the goal of learning more about training plans, since I am uninformed enough to have just recently learned what the term "tempo" meant.  And also learned that the second-half of my marathons are hurt by my neglect of Tempo runs! 

I received THREE books.  One is Hal Higdon's marathon book, which unfortunately I am finding very dull as it is clearly directed at beginners and primarily for inspiration to new runners.  The first half of the book is testimonials from people regarding their first marathon experience.  Blahhhh.  Since his training plans are for free on the internet, this one will hopefully be returned and exchanged for his book "Run Fast".

Doc's guide to running, and this doc doesn't say "don't run, use the elliptical"

The other two books have potential as they really focus on injury prevention and understanding.  One is full of pages of strength-training moves, which I love. 

The next closest thing to running-related was my request for an Ipad (which I got!), and I will likely use it for blogging and maybe any useful running-related apps.  Recommendations for Apps are now welcome!

Other than that, Santa was clearly peeping on my blog.  Santa knew that a) I was scrappy and wore long socks as arm-warmers at CIM, and b) that I like to wear bright shirts when I race.

bright shirts

arm warmers

to replace my scrappy use of socks

I previously blogged about thinking arm-warmers were a waste of money when long socks cost $2 and can be worn as arm warmers.  I guess my mom (Santa) is hinting at me to stop acting like a bag-lady and use real running gear.

I also got two pairs of successful (so far) running shorts with one large pocket each.

Reebok.  Which apparently is a breed of African antelope, as I learned during a Christmas trivia game.

And now on to the good pictures, which include people instead of just things.

Clutching my prized stocking with the Gentleman's family on Christmas morning

Immediately wearing the cute scarf in my stocking.  Gentleman is wearing the awesome sweater I gifted him.

Thank you to everyone for the happy anniversary wishes last week...we celebrated with something very special that I will share someday soon

Nephew Robert, in the excellent Peruvian sweater we bought him on our trip to Peru.  OK, it was a Peruvian store in Sacramento.

Gift madness at my family's home Christmas afternoon

I'm renaming this blog "fuzzy pictures."  It always happens!

Somehow I think this picture may end up in a "things white people like" book.  "Posing in front of decorated Christmas trees"
There was a point on Christmas day when I was SO full that I waddled over to the Gentleman and said "I'm almost jealous that you have the flu so that you didn't get caught in the gluttony trap."  And then I ate 23 more white-chocolate-peppermint pretzels.

What running-related gifts did you get?