Suz's love for COWS + Allan's work with LASERS = one unique blog name! Welcome to our blog filled with race recaps, pictures of our labs, and everything else we share with blogland!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Cotton Row 5K

Every Memorial Day Allan and I run the Cotton Row 5K here in Huntsville. This is the fourth year we have run this race and there are always a few things you can count on: heat, patriotism, and crowd support at the finish. I have yet to make it to the start of a race without crying during the National Anthem or other pre-race traditions.

Many thanks to Gregg at We Run Huntsville for this picture. We are so lucky to have him!
This year's race was painful. Back in May I was having hip pain which lingered for a couple of months and then disappeared in late June after I took some time off of running. Rewind to Cotton Row. Allan and I ran together but at the end we both did a sprint to the finish. Mine was more of a hobble so Allan edged me out with a time of 35:22 and my time was 35:27. Despite running slower times than we would have liked we had a great time and will be back next year!

Our favorite races are rarely about fast times. It's impossible to run this race without thinking about those who have given their life for our country and for us it's impossible to run without remembering Allan's cousin, David, a Marine who passed away much too soon. Personally, I like to think he's there running with us in spirit.

Do you get emotionally during the National Anthem or other pre-race traditions?

Friday, October 25, 2013

The Journey of Josephine Cain by Nancy Moser

There are several periods of our nation's history that fascinate me and the post-Civil War era is one of those. This novel puts us right in the middle of a tumultuous time with Abraham Lincoln's assassination and the country rebuilding itself. Josephine's father is hard at work in the West building the Transcontinental Railroad and she desperately misses him. After the death of her brother and cousin her aunt and mother have spent their days in mourning but Josephine is tired of donning black day in and day out. She's ready to go on living life. On a short visit home her father brings Lewis to dinner and he becomes the answer to her prayers by getting her out of the house and back into society. It's evident from the start that there's more going on with Lewis than trying to win Josephine's heart. Will he be able to make her his bride and follow through with whatever plan he intends to carry out? On a visit to the West Josephine meets Hudson, an Irish rail worker, and a shared view of the sunset alters her view of the West and Hudson. Perhaps there's more than meets the eye about both.

Book Info

About the book: When a socialite from the nation's capital embarks on a journey to the Wild West, her life is changed forever.

A setting populated by hundreds of laborers, outlaws, and Indians is hardly the place for a wealthy general's daughter. But Josephine Cain is determined to visit her father, who supervises the day-to-day work involved in the grandest ambition of post-Civil War America: the building of the Transcontinental Railroad. Life with the railroad is far from the proper life Josephine is used to, and she faces deadly gunfights, harsh weather, and vigilante uprisings. She is torn between the West and the East; between her privileged upbringing and the challenges of a new frontier; between the pull of the suitable beau her parents approve of and an attraction to a rough but charming Irish railroad worker. But if Josephine is willing, she just might find a new life, a unique purpose . . . and true love.

Purchase a copy:

Meet Nancy: Nancy Moser is the best-selling author of more than twenty novels. She is a winner and two-time nominee of the Christy Award, and her latest novel was named to Booklist's "Top 10 Romance Novels of 2011." Nancy and her husband have three grown children and three grandchildren, and they live in the Midwest.

Learn more at Nancy at:

 Blog Tour Schedule
The Journey of Josephine Cain by Nancy Moser follows the adventures of a D.C. socialite as she gets involved with the building of the Transcontinental Railroad right after the Civil War. Be sure to check out Nancy's fun Pinterest board for the book!

Enter to win 1 of 5 copies of the book!

  Five winners will receive:
  • The Journey of Josephine Cain by Nancy Moser
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on October 26th. All winners will be announced October 28th at the Litfuse blog.

Don't miss a moment of the fun; enter today and be sure to visit the Litfuse blog on the 28th to see if you won one of the books!

 I received this book free of charge from Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

It's Gym Time

This Saturday will be two months since Allan and I started going to the gym and I can't believe that much time has already flown by. We've taken some time off here and there during those two months but we've stayed committed. I won't lie and say it's always easy to go but I have yet to leave the gym without feeling like going was the right thing to do.

The bike and I are becoming better friends
It's been a long time since I've pushed myself and I can feel myself getting stronger. I've been diligent about keeping a workout log so I know what exercise I'm doing at what weight and how many reps and sets of each I do for each day. That helps me to know what weight to use for each set and also allows me the ability to look back and see the progress I've made.

I'm sure Allan will love this picture of the back of his head. I was trying to get the Made Better sign on the wall in the picture.
Our gym offers free weights, weight machines, several classes, multiple cardio machines, and Crossfit. The Crossfit area is in the gym but completely separate so to do that we would have to pay a different fee. It is really motivating to be working out and watching people do Crossfit. I always feel like I can push myself just a little bit harder during a set.

The area for free weights and weight machines
I have yet to try any of the classes but I plan to do that once Allan's 3-month pass runs out and it's just me at the gym. A friend from college is one of the instructors so I plan to start with one of her Body Combat or Body Attack classes. Allan and I do plan to take a spin class together sometime soon but so far that hasn't worked out with his work schedule and the gym class schedule. I'm also looking forward to trying out some new exercises. I finally took the time to make a binder with all the exercise pages I've torn from health magazines. Please tell me I'm not the only one who tears out pages of exercises you want to try!

Cardio and Crossfit area on the other side of the weights area

What type of gym classes have you taken if any?
Do you work out alone or with a partner?