These paws were made for running…



Sunmart is this coming weekend. I haven’t done a real race since Boston in April. I’ve done a couple low key things like the Maze in May and the Dr. Pepper race, but nothing like a real, get nervous, actually have to prepare event. For that reason alone, I am excited, but also, I’ve been wanting to do it again, and the last 2 years wasn’t able to. It should be interesting, as I’ve had a forced taper with the asthma attack from hell, work, and out of town Thanksgiving. I’ve still been running, but normally would have done more long runs. Today was the only day I could do a long run, and I resisted temptation, realizing the race is less than 1 week away. Pancake and I met up with Meredith, Paul, Stephanie T, and Flyer on the greenbelt. It was a perfect fall day, even though in the rest of the country it is winter. This is the most fall color I ever remember Austin having. Mike took the tree picture and it still doesn’t do justice to all the nice reds and yellows out there. It’s been so long since I’ve been somewhere that really had a fall, with just out little bit of prettiness, I can’t imagine how beautiful a real fall must be. One of these days I would really like to do the Vermont 50 miler in Sept., and see the New England fall colors. I will just have to add it to my very long lists of runs I want to do sometime.

The Pancake picture is of her post run today. It is funny how “famous” she is becoming. I run into people now who seem to know Pancake from seeing out her running and don’t know me, because I suppose of the 2 of us, I am the much more forgettable looking one. At least no mud this time!

Not much else going on. The whole month has been a work-athon, with a lot of sick time thrown in, so that makes for kinda boring blogging. I am hoping to have some more exciting material after next weekend’s Sunmart and Decker 1/2 marathon the next day (Deckmart?). Only interesting thing I am doing today is making a vegan cashew chili. I’ve been wanting to try it forever, and it is simmering right now. If it is good, I’ll post the recipe.

The mud bugs…

This little birdie doesn’t have much to do with anything.  I am running out of photos and I thought he looked a irritable…sometimes I feel that way so I put a picture of him up.

Sometimes life pulls you away from some of things you enjoy.  I am in the midst of one of those times, working a little more than I want, and fulfilling a few more obligations than I want.  Nothing terrible, just suffering a touch on my running and my sleep, but I’ll live.
Speaking of sleep…I should be doing it now.  So, this will be short.  I had to get dressed in my finest professional attire and go into work all day and a dinner this evening.  The highlight of the day was 8.5 miles in rain and light mud with Mark and Pancake.  I got home, notice my legs were streaked with mud and noticed Pancake was so muddy, a mere hosing off would not take care of it.  I need lots of soap and lots of scrubbing.  After this, I was REALLY dirty, so I basically had to repeat Pancake’s process of lots of soap and lots of scrubbing on myself.  I flew out of the shower and rushed into my work clothes and out the door to work.  Got there a few minutes later, and had to kinda chuckle to myself that just a few minutes ago I was streaked with mud, jumping over tree roots in the dark with just a headlamp to help me see.   It felt like a double life of sorts.  I also thought I couldn’t really begin to explain to anyone at work that a few minutes ago I was caked in mud, with a light on my head, jumping over tree roots, and why this makes perfect sense to me as a way to spend Sunday morning.

Finally…


…I can run! Mostly. Still gotta take a couple cough breaks, and I am a little slow on hills, but I was super relieved to get 20 on the greenbelt Saturday and 11 road miles Sunday. I feel like I’ve done good work for Sunmart…20 plus mile runs every weekend except 2 since the end of August. The next 2 weekends will make training tough, as it will be get it in while I can with work one weekend and out of town for Thanksgiving the next.

Anyhow, not much to report. It was lovely to have a beautiful run in perfect weather. Pancake agreed.

Update…

An old picture of Huntsville state park…as I get so excited for Sunmart.  My first real race since Boston!!

Anyhow, I am now about a week into not breathing (aka the asthma attack from hell)    It’s getting better though as today I managed a 12 minute mile and could go up stairs.  Ugg, so annoying not to be able to do things.
Maybe it was the frustration of the asthma attack from hell, maybe I was just tired, but I found my self telling Mike out loud “I am not sure I want to run 100 miles any more.”  His advice was do what I want, not what I feel like I have to do…which was good advice.  I usually do what I feel like I have to do:  stay late at work, pick up the shift no one will take, go to volunteer work sick…gosh, I sounding like a martyr here, but I am really not trying to be one.  I just try very hard to have the attitude of suck it up.  there are a lot of things I don’t want to do, but sometimes just have to.  
Well, this is my hobby, so it’s ok to do it the way I want.  Maybe I’ll regret it when I can breathe again.  I don’t know.  But, I am super excited for Sunmart, super excited for  RR 50 mile, and not feeling overwhelmed at all.  I was looking forward to the camaraderie with Ryan and Mark on a loop or 2, and I do feel bad about backing out for that reason, but gotta keep it fun.
My original ultra running goals were to run and finish a 50 (done!), run and finish a 100 (done!), finish a race to get a buckle (done!).  I don’t feel I have anything else to prove.  The only goal I can really think of is I would like to go back to the MiWok 100K and do it again.  
Anyhow, thanks to my friends for their encouragement to run a 100.  Maybe next year.  Maybe never again (didn’t I promise that to Stephanie in the middle of the night in Vermont about 600 times!?!)

A change..

Ok, I STILL cannot run (darn lungs…and I am pretty frustrated), but I finalized my decision to change from the 100 to the 50 at Rocky Raccoon.  I’ll fill in details later, but I was breaking my own rule of this is supposed to be fun.    I am fine with it, and actually was leaning this way for awhile, and I am losing 3 training weekends in November, and that kinda did it.  Anyhow, I’ll still be doing plenty of long runs, so I’ll be running with most of y’all at some point.  50 miles just sounds a lot more fun to me.

Never underestimate breathing…


It’s 130am.  I am never up this late.  Please indulge me while I whine for a bit:

Mike brought home bronchitis this week.  Asthmatics (me), don’t really deal well with bronchitis.  It’s a double whammy of not breathing.  I am winded just walking around the house, so I literally cannot run a step.  Both today (Sunday) and yesterday I tried to meet friends and in the middle of the night thought, “who am I kidding?”  When it’s tough just to get up and walk to the bathroom, a run on the greenbelt probably ain’t happening.  So, the lesson there is if in doubt about your ability to run, don’t make plans with others.  I know this is temporary and I don’t have lung cancer or COPD, but when breathing takes a lot of effort…it really sucks.  My muscles are super sore (for some reason asthma attacks like to give me achy joints), I took way to much medicine in an attempt to sleep tonight, so this probably sounds like a crazy rant, and I can’t run at all!!!!  GRRRRRR!!!!  At this point I have officially written the weekend off, and hopefully the forced taper will pay off on next weekend’s long run.

The picture, which isn’t very good (since I used a phone camera), is of the mineral collection I inherited this week from my grandmother.  You really cannot tell how amazing it is, and that many of these specimens she found herself, traveling to different mines and dig sites all over the world.   I will be working on a nice way to display them, because the collection really is priceless.   This was the gem of my week (ok, bad pun).

SCARY…


I wish the Headless Horseman was still shown on tv.  the Johnny Depp movie didn’t really cut it..it just wasn’t very scary.    This movie looks super scary and I cannot wait for it to come out.  Anyhow, moving on past Halloween.

Had a pretty good running weekend.  Did 20 on Saturday.    But then went to Wurstfest that night, and after walking around in lots of smoke, eating lots of yummy German food, and drinking a lot of dark beer, I was totally pooped, and in a full blown asthma attack.  It was worth it though, polka music is fun.  Next year I will have to do the 5 mile run.
Today Meghan met me for her first greenbelt run.  It was great to have a new trail friend.  We did 13 with Pancake and had a terrific time.  We saw 2 big bucks.  The weather was great.  I am tired now though.    Found this old greenbelt picture.  It is hard to believe a year ago there was that much water.  It was hard to explain the water crossings to Meghan when they haven’t existed in months.  
Looks like Meghan is in for a long run on the 15th, so I will skip Warda and shoot for 30ish here in Austin.   So the training continues.  I am trying to hang in there, but I still feel like I am in great shape for a 50, not a 100.
Have a great week everyone.