Birthdays, pies and miles…

This may be my most favorite picture ever…

Apparently I’ve been busy.   It’s the time of year where I swear I would have a large chunk of Christmas stuff done and so far I’ve managed to order cards online and that’s it.   Jasper and I are also signed up for a cookie making class…does that count?

I’m coming to the end of Dallas marathon training.  I managed a 20 miler last weekend.  While the temps have been pleasant every weekend seems to have torrential rains.  The 20 miler was done at the crack of dawn with a very gracious friend who met me for a large chunk and I ended up with just about 7 miles in cold and wet.   But it was done!!!   This weekend is more cold and wet and I plan to just manage want I can manage.   I’m still assessing goals, but mainly just thankful I have a group of friends coming with me to scratch another 26.2 off the list.

I also celebrated another birthday.   It was a nice quiet sushi dinner.   It was a good one….the last two years someone in the family (hint, his picture appears frequently in this blog),  had epic tantrums, epic enough that two years later I still remember them.  This year there were no epic tantrums.  No tantrums at all and was lovely.

And now it’s Thanksgiving…..and I’ve got 4 different pies on the schedule.    Pies first….miles later.


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Piñatas, Olympians, and no logging for me…

Saturday I did a heavenly 20 miler.  It felt good to scratch that off my list.  When I haven’t done town lake in a long time, I really enjoy it.  I saw this new giant piñata art installation and Leo Manzano, who has won an Olympic medal in the 1500.   I had my phone and would have loved a picture but I suppose one does not interrupt Olympians mid workout to take selfies.   So instead I drooled over the piñatas.  I love cool artwork.   And the forecasted rain held off until the last mile and a half….now that’s a good run.

This week’s running news is I’ve abandoned keeping a running log.  I’ve gone back and forth on this over the years.  Daily Mile was fun and then I switched to Strava.  Strava is pretty darn cool, but this week I heard about the new Runkeeper app that syncs up with your Apple Watch.  I tried it a couple days and found it a bit buggy, and decided to give it up all together.  I never, never, never go back and read a running log.  How boring would that be?  It’s satisfying to see big mile weeks, but dangerously obsessive.   Also, it’s not like I’m a professional athlete sending data to a coach. No one will ever  look at my Strava page and think “Gee I wonder how doughy middle age women train?”  The Apple Watch has a nifty activity tracker which isn’t really a log, but it will record all my runs and I think that’s enough.  I’m not saying never again….it’s sorta fun to do with friends, and I might spin some sorta log into this blog and maybe it will entice me to post more.  But for now I am simplying my life.   It’s not like I don’t have 8 trillion other little tasks in the day.  

Back to the ‘mill this weekend.  Next weekend I hope to see the piñatas again!

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Time flies…


Another hectic couple o’ weeks have come and gone.  I’ve been in the treadmill a ton and have maxed out shows and movies.  Currently watching Girls on HBO and not loving it.  Loving Fargo….but I can’t binge watch it on the treadmill.  Gotta love first world problems.  But when I have gotten outside in the last couple weeks the weather is perfect.  When not dumping rain that is…I need to flag this post and read it in the late spring when I am thinking of signing up for a fall marathon.  I think a December marathon in Texas is the way to go.  Last weekend I finally got in a long run and it was heaven….perfect weather.    Other than the fact I didn’t eat enough and was really hungry towards the end, I felt good, and felt so much better all day than after a summer long run.  Plus the day before was Halloween and that day was cray cray.  Mike was out of town and Jasper and I hit his taekwondo class, then spend four hours at another fall festival.  We have two elementary schools in our neighborhood, so we know a couple kids who go to this other one.  So much fun to go to the fall festival and not work at it and I scored big in the silent auction.  Best score is a birthday party at a new bounce place that Jasper has fallen in love with.   We rushed home, carved a giant pumpkin and Mike got home for all of 24 hours before going out of town again to do trick or treating. It was a huge whirlwind and as a result I didn’t get any pictures.

This week I volunteered for a couple things at Jasper’s school and that made things a little busier than normal and I am ready for the weekend!   This weekend I’ve got a 20 miler, the new Charlie Brown movie, and a birthday party.   November is flying by and then time for a December marathon then Christmas!  Yes!

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Halloween week running ramblings…

  Just a couple weekends ago hot…and now feeling fallish…

-It’s been a busy week!  I’ve been on the treadmill all week, which for week one is fine.  Next week is week two and that’s when I start I wish for an outside run.  But, I do get the chance to get outdoors this weekend, so that will help so much.   I did get some pretty good treadmill runs in, but I am soooooo craving a long run after last weekend’s marathon fiasco.  

-I was bummed to find out  Marathon and Beyond is ceasing publication.  I’ve been getting it for a few years.  It’s essays and report style writing about marathons and ultras.  Fantastic race reports and no fluff.  I love Runner’s World, but they definitely have some fluff pieces.  M & B was something you curled up in bed with and stayed up too late reading. Katherine Switzer had a regular column.  But it’s an old school read.  Marathons are changing and I guess there isn’t as much of an audience for things like essays  of one person’s run across a state, or a report on all the little ins and outs of Hawaii’s marathons.  I had a secret goal of getting an essay published, as most their writings were things submitted by readers.  I started a few different race reports but never thought anything was good enough to send off.  I missed my chance and will miss reading those essays every other month…

-NYC marathon is on this weekend.  Supposedly you can watch it with the ESPN app.  (We’ll see)…..Go Meb!  Go Yuki!   Marathon Talk podcast has pointed out that Yuki wears the tiniest shorts.  I agree.  

If you don’t know who Yuki is….read this.

-Dallas training long run this weekend….and Halloween!  I’m really hoping for no rain!  Perhaps Yuki will inspire me to wear tiny shorts.   Hmmmmm….costume idea?

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The marathon that wasn’t…

Gotta love zombie making apps…

All week long the weather reports said 100% chance of heavy rain Saturday , so all week long I started wrapping my head around the idea I may not get to race.  The question was just when the rain would hit.  If timed right, the race could easily go on.  I made peace with the fact I may not get to race, but the hard part was keeping my head in the game if I got to race.   When going for a goal race, you really need to be focused.  Friday’s weather was pretty mild and I just had to operate under the assumption I would race the next morning.  

I was woken up right before my alarm Saturday by epic sounding rain as the weather reports had promised.   Jasper got up too.    I waited as long as possible to start getting ready…still epic rains.  The thought of running for that long in that much wet just sounded terrible.   I can go out for 6-7 miles, get soaked, then immediately hop in the shower, but 3 plus hours…bleh.   Plus this is a small race of about 150 people.  No crowd support at all, and if there was some I doubt they’d stand around in the rain.  I hit a point of last minute-ness and I still hadn’t eaten my pre race meal, so I hopped on the treadmill and started a workout and texted a couple friends that I wish the RD had just canceled so I didn’t feel like such a wimp for bailing.  Dang runner pride of suck it up no matter how crappy the conditions are….but then hark… email comes through…30 minutes into the the race the police came and closed the park for flooding.  Race canceled.  I felt oddly relieved.  

The minute I finished my treadmill run, I got online and registered for the Dallas marathon in Dec.  maybe this was really the race I should have signed up for in the first place.  Lots of crowd support, a pretty course decorated for Christmas, pace groups, Meb, Denna Kastor and Ryan Hall at the expo….yeah, a big race.   Probably a better shot at a good time.  It had been my back up plan all week and part of me kinda wanted to do it instead of my original race.  So yeah, I’m excited.   That means 6 more weeks of training that was supposed to start today but my long run got rained out again….more treadmill, more gym.  Next weekend, I’m hitting that town lake trail no matter what.

So overall not the worst thing ever.  And I’ve got Stephanie (KC buddy)  roped in for Dallas….which is beyond awesome.  

So as Jasper’s favorite fortune says “Try to find the good with the bad.”   New marathon with company = lots of good.

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Sunnier days at the pumpkin patch…

A quick post before I watch Fargo….

Biblical rains are forecast at 100% Friday and Saturday this week.  I have a marathon on  Saturday.  Even if extreme conditions don’t force cancellation, I’m not sure running as hard as I can in flash flooding sounds fun. Rain is ok.  Dumping rain for almost 4 hours of running isn’t.  The RD sent out an email he still plans the event with a delay for dangerous conditions, but if dangerous conditions last all day, I don’t want to sit around waiting and I can’t imagine volunteers will. 

  I’ve got a few scenarios in my head.   A dramatic change in the weather report aside, the race getting canceled may be the best scenario.  If it’s not, I need to decide do I race as planned, just run it to get in a long run, or bag it all together and be thankful that the RD donates all money after expenses to the local library branch (at least someone benefits from my entry).  

I’m pretty ok with all this.  I was bummed for about half a day, but with age comes perspective. I’m happy I can run and a race is really just another run.   If it doesn’t happen I’m thankful there will be more. Yes, I worked hard to prep for this , but you can’t change the weather. 

And my friends and family are very supportive of the possibility of another race down the road.  

Ok, weather gods….show me what you got!

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Almost go time…

My angel wanted to be a nurse for community helpers day at school.  He was very proud of that a lot of kids chose to dress up as doctors but he was the only nurse.  

Whew…I knew things would get busy.  But it’s taper time. I’ve been so busy with my PTA commitment that I haven’t got taper crazies. Maybe that’s the way to do it, take on a big project right before the marathon.    I’m just tired as all get up now.  This weekend will put an end to my big PTA commitment….but it will be a doozy with a 16 hour day on my feet Saturday.  Then next week will be all about rest….(sure, I’ll  just go ahead and tell myself that).

Did I do all I could for this race?  I’m sure I can always to more, but watching my morning running buddy struggle with a bout of injury put it all in perspective for me.  At this point in my life it is always better to slightly undertrain.  I had some great weekend runs but was pretty conservative during the week.  I did one race pace run a week and one speed workout (most weeks).  I did a lot of gym work and I hope it pays off and makes me more resilient those last few miles. 

I really trained to focus on getting faster.  My big goal is to qualify and get into Bosotn.  With the times getting faster and faster to get in, the cards not stacked in my favor. I’ve promised myself if I qualify but not by enough to get into Boston I will find another travel race and treat myself to that.  I’ve never done any other big city marathons..out of  34 marathons only the Bostons have been biggies.  So maybe I have a Chicago or Marine Corps in my future.  

So after I sell my soul for Fall Festival this weekend, it’s go time.  Now if I could just get rid of this soreness by then… I said…lots of gym work (ouch!)

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