Thursday, January 30, 2014

Vote for Me!!

I am going to attend Fitbloggin 14 in Savannah, Georgia this June.

The Keynote Address is going to be an Ignite Session, ours is called Ignite Fitness.

What's an Ignite Talk? I had no idea either! "Educate us, but make it quick".

It's a five minute speech on your choice, with 20 slides that auto-advance every 15 seconds for a total of just five minutes.

Apparently this is a popular geeky thing, but  I had never heard of it.  I watched a few videos, really cool concept.

So Fitbloggin is looking for 14 bloggers to give five minute Ignite Fitness Sparks.  7 will be chosen by popular vote-hence, your help is needed!

What do you need to do?  Just go to Fitbloggin, and scroll down the list and click on the little stars under the topic.  I'm not sure whether I am supposed to tell you which topic is mine; it should be self evident.  I wanted to do something with trails, or running, and I came up with my helpful winter tip.

If you have an work computer, and a home computer, you could vote twice! :) I'm just saying!

You don't have to log in, sign up, or do anything but click your mouse!

If selected, presenters also get a free ticket to the conference, which would be very cool. 

Fitbloggin-hanging out with other people who aren't necessarily ultra runners-is another way for me to use my 2014 word, "Reach".

Thanks for voting!!! 

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Correct Choices

Today was another one of those tedious choice days in the wintertime in Ohio: do I run on the treadmill or do I run outside?

And what's the weather supposed to be like?  Saturday was forecast with low temperatures and high winds. It was windy in the morning, when we took the pups out.

After being outside for a few hours, I decided to run outside after lunch.  I knew it would be more of a hike than a run, but I was okay with that.

My timing was impeccable.  It was a bit windy when I started, but then I dropped down into the creek bottom, out of the wind.

 This is township road that is not "maintained" from November through April. Truth be told, it's not really maintained at all.  There are no houses on this road, just one hunting trailer and one road which might lead to some one's hunting cabin. 
 There was about 4 to 8 inches of snow on the "road" so it was just like breaking trail.
This township road leads to an asphalt road, and I ran down it a bit to get to three miles.
This old abandoned house is here, inside a cow pasture, and I took a couple pics since I had the camera on me.


Then I ran back to my unmaintained township road and headed home.

I had just got my new Black Diamond Z-Poles the day before, and this was my first run with them, as I have a good descent and then climb out of the creek bottom.  I'm very happy with them! They are so light, compared to my newby REI hiking poles.  I didn't have an issue with carrying them as I ran, they were so light.

The BD poles were very helpful in both climbing and descending my hills, as it was a bit slick under all the snow.  The hiking poles will come in handy for the climbs (and descents) on The Wild Oak Trail-fast approaching!!


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

11 Degrees, 11 Miles

I was in a bit of a funk this morning when I woke up and saw the "one" degree on the temperature outside.  Rats, I had a 16 mile run to do.

Being my day off from work, I had plenty of wiggle room to get the run in.  I thought about the treadmill.  There was NO WAY I could run 16 miles on the treadmill. And besides, what if the electrician showed up this morning? (The treadmill is in the basement where he is currently working.)

Okay, how about NOT running 16 miles?  That immediately took some of the pressure off my mind. How about I just run around the block, and do some out-n-backs-and get in, 8 or 10 or 12 miles? That seemed much more doable, and sounded safer to me.

Clothing-tights and wind pants.  On top I wore a wool shirt and my rain/wind jacket. Big fleecy orange hat and my Hannibal Lechter face mask. Drymax winter socks and screwed Hokas.

I wore fleece mittens and my windbreaker mittens over those. I also activated and tucked in a chemical handwarmer into each mitten. I remembered my pain on my trail run from the other day and did not want to duplicate that! I also wanted to see if the handwarmers were still okay, as they were at least 2 or 3 years old.

Run was good! Slow! I feel really slow when I am wearing two pair of pants, I do not know why. But I was toasty warm too.

Only picture of the run. I have been tucking my phone into my Spibelt, keeping it next to my body, to keep the battery from draining.  (For warm weather peeps, batteries and electronics drain quicker in cold temperatures.  If you keep them on your body, they will stay warmer.)  But when I saw the random child's electric guitar on the fence, I had to stop for a photo.

I tried to keep my route down in the valley, to stay out of most winds.  I found myself chilling about the same mileage-it seems like around mile six my torso starts to get a little cold. I don't know if that is where I start to slow down more, but that's where a bit of a chill sets in.

My mileage ended up at 11 miles, coincidentally, the same temperature in Fahrenheit as I ended the run. Not quite the 16 on the schedule, but I am fine with that. It was more about the mental attitude to get out and get it done.  I'm feeling pretty good about being able to handle cold temperatures on  The Wild Oak Trail in about fourteen days.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014


Routine | Have you started a new routine this January?  Is this routine different from last year?  Is it the result of a resolution or goal you're working on?  Tell us about your days.  How do they flow?  If you'd like, maybe give us a full "day in the life" or just some snippets.

My new routine? Journalling my food again, via Weight Watchers.

Results? I am down about four six pounds.

What else? I'm not mindlessly snacking. I plan out what food I am taking to work, and I don't buy anything extra, other than a diet soda or a diet Snapple.  I was starting to get into a routine with that, buying something extra-aka chips or crackers-my crutch.  This month,  I have consumed what was planned out and no more.

I am also practicing "portion" control which got out of  hand with me.  That is really what WW is mainly about.  Even if you are not doing WW, food journalling-and being true to portion size-can really help with weight control.

If you are in a bit of a plateau with weight loss, or have made the new  year's resolution to lose ten or fifty pounds, WW (or food journalling) is a good tool to use.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Mean Dogs and High Winds

I don't know why I thought it would be a "good idea" to get my 15 miles in today on the roads.
I ran 15 miles on trails yesterday, and I thought I would be much quicker on the roads today.

The roads had different ideas.  Once I got off my state route, the roads were totally snow covered. I was wearing just road shoes, so it was just a bit slick going.

I kept going, was glad to see the township truck plowing and laying cinders, that made it a bit easier for me.

About mile six, I had just topped out a hill and passed a house, where I then heard the dog commotion and turmoil behind me.  I turned and saw one dog (of two) heading toward me at a dead run.

I  had to stop and yell "NO" at the dog.  His hackles were up and he wasn't happy. I kept walking away and he kept following (at a distance) and barking.  Eventually I seemed to be at the edge of his property and I carried on.

I knew it was going to be a windy day, but my goodness, it was soo windy.  It was really sucking my will to run. 

But I did.  My energy level was a bit low.  But I kept going.  When, on a loop run, what is the alternate? I wasn't hurt, the weather wasn't *that* bad.  But the asphalt was getting to me.  Ugh.

But, 16 miles is 16 miles in the bank. I believe I've got 58 miles in for the week..and tomorrow is a day off, I'm looking forward to that!

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Fifteen Miles at Salt Fork

My run began this morning at 11 degrees F.  Not that bad out, but my hands suffered in the first two miles.

I took my hiking poles out with me.  I got very disenchanted within a few minutes with them.  The ground here is frozen-but just on top. The poles kept sinking down into the mud below.

My hands also were freezing. I mean seriously freezing. I was even wearing my new fleece gloves, but my hands were actually hurting. (Well it was only 11 degrees out, and windy.) I don't think clasping metal poles-even with their rubber molding-was helping.

I jumped off the trail about mile two, to abandon the poles. I retrieved them later from the road.  After leaving the poles, I made a conscious effort to move my arms up and down to get some blood flowing to them.  My hands finally warmed up about mile three or so and I had no more issues.  (But this is a good point to note. I do have those hand warmer items, and I could have started my run with those to keep my  hands warm initially.

The schedule called for 15 miles and I needed trails!  I meant to start at the Dog Park Beach at Salt Fork, but they had the road closed past the first parking lot for the beach, so I parked there, and headed up the trail.

I followed the Bridle Trail, then met up with the pink blazed trail which marks the Bigfoot 50K.  Lots of frozen mud and ruts left over from the 50K.  I had a bunch of time thinking about trail races.  There was a  trail running race in the Alum Creek Area which apparently destroyed about six miles of mountain bike trail due to the mud conditions.  The bridle trail at Salt Fork State Park-which is most of the Bigfoot 50K loop-was also very chewed up.  I spent a good deal of time contemplating on trail stewardship-who is to determine how many runners can be in a race? Should loop course races be allowed?  What kind of mathematical formula could be involved to help determine numbers? 

 Although most of the trail was frozen, there were parts that were very chewed up from runners.  I run this loop year round, I see it dry, wet, muddy.  So I know what it looks like, pre-race, and I am seeing it a month post race.  (And incidentally, I just ran 15 miles, in a loop, at SF, so I could cobble together a 2 loop course, rather than a 3 loop course in the same course.)

I got to the Lodge about mile five, stopped and drank from my water bottle and refilled. I was wearing my old UD Wink Pack.  But I was storing my water bottles in it instead of the bladder. Also carrying a few items that I will need for TWOT. In other words, this was a training run for TWOT.

 Not a bad training run either, with the frozen ruts the trail was more technical.  I did more hiking than running, and that is going to happen at TWOT.

 The Lake is almost frozen.  I really liked the patterns the snow and wind left on the Lake.

I had a good run/jog/hike today. I got my fifteen miles in, more mental fortitude built up for TWOT.  Clothing choices were good for today.  I wore silk long jowns under my tights. I wore a singlet under my wool shirt, covered by my rain jacket.  That was enough on the top and very warm on the climbs.

A very good return to the trails today. TWOT is rapidly arriving.

Saturday, January 11, 2014


I ran 13 miles today.  Not quite the 16+, with vertical, that I had planned on, but I will take it.

It wasn't a bad run. I had pretty good energy but took it very easy.  It helped that it was 51 degrees WTF after five days ago being -8 F.

I wasn't very happy when the rain started back up on me around mile six. I didn't wear a rain jacket-as it wasn't raining, and 51 F when I started.  But the rain did subside, after a few miles.

I ran up a new side road.  It was dirt, no loose dogs were encountered, so I may have another new route to add to my "around the block" road repertoire.

I am a bit frustrated, as this was to be a big weekend of training, and it has turned into more of a weekend of rest.   But illness is never reckoned into the schedule. It is what it is.

I won't try and double up on runs, I will just go back to my regular schedule.  Hopefully this was my sickness for the year!

Thursday, January 9, 2014


I was very relieved to see an "off" day on my running schedule today. I've finally caught the scourge from whomever-husband is sick, one technician at work has strep, the hanta roto-virus has been making the rounds..

I feel much better this afternoon than when I first woke up..I think I went to bed at 830pm and slept until almost 8 am.  I did beg for a doctor appointment...which is tomorrow, welcome to rural health care..

I was very frustrated at first because my running plans have disintegrated for the weekend. I WAS going over to the Laurel Highlands Trail and get in a bunch of vertical.  That is clearly out of the picture.

I will probably not run Friday and see how I feel Saturday. I do have that sick "exhaustion" feeling going on, but I did get downstairs and cleaned out the basement/treadmill room. It was disgusting, to be frank.

I'm on a decluttering kick and discovered at least 36 wine glasses..most still in boxes.  These are all going to Goodwill.  (This still leaves us with our Cinti wine glasses, probably about sixteen of these..)

 The shot glasses are going too.  We used to "collect" these, and when we had our little bar, in the Litchfield house, they were on display.  These shot glasses are still in the box from The Move 14 years ago! They are clearly not needed, and are out of here!  (That still leaves about 4 or 5 shot glasses in the kitchen shelves.)

We are getting most of our house rewired.  Our house is an old farmhouse, built in the 50's, by lumber felled on the property.  Most of the wiring is original and pretty scary. So when the bathroom light started to fritz out, we finally called the electrician and that project starts soon.

So this is a perfect time to get some remodelling done..hence my amusement with the horoscope:

With Jupiter in Cancer most of the year and opposing planets in your sign at every turn, you may find yourself knee deep in home maintenance

Back to the running...TWOT happens in about one month.  I don't feel all that great about it, but TWOT is more about endurance than speed, and I do have that.  The mental gains have also been good. So even without some longish runs, I think I should be okay for TWOT.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Happy Birthday to ME

 This is practically the only day of the year I seek out and read my horoscope for the year ahead.

I'm a GOAT!


2014 is a Number Five year for you. Ruled by Mercury. This is a year of exploration and freedom. It's a time when exploration and reaching out to others brings opportunities. It's a good time to advertise and sell. Surprises are in store, and the routine is broken. This is a year when exciting relationships can be formed, or, if you are already in a partnership, new life is breathed into the relationship. Advice - explore, look for adventure, keep your eyes open for opportunities, mingle.

Freedom and exploration-sounds like my plans for going out west, to Zion and Colorado and hopefully the Wasatch Mountain Range-fit right in here!

Personal and Social Life in 2014:

The year begins with five planets in Capricorn - the Sun, the Moon, Mercury, Venus, and Pluto. This suggests that you will be very busy, but that doesn't just apply to your job/work.

With Jupiter in Cancer most of the year and opposing planets in your sign at every turn, you may find yourself knee deep in home maintenance. And this doesn't just mean upkeep of your physical residence. It also means keeping family and romantic ties strong with a certain amount of effort. The "work" required will often be pleasant, but if you've ever wanted a reason to avoid laziness, this is it.

So how did the horoscope know we are getting ready to re-wire the house-which will entail some home remodelling?

Adding to the momentum - particularly later in the year - is Jupiter's position in Leo starting in mid-July. Not only are you getting your second wind, but at last the work-to-results ratio is skewing in the favor of results.

Sounds good for a fall 100 mile race..

What those results may be could surprise you, but they're worth the continued effort at the same time. You'll be seeing progress in interpersonal relationships, status, and emotional balance.

But why stop when things are getting good? When Mars in Sagittarius trines Jupiter in Leo on October 8, even retrograde Mercury can't slow you down!

My run this morning:

It was 16 degrees F when I started, 9 degrees when I got home.  It really was not that bad out. 

 I wore running tights under my wind pants. I wore one merino wool shirt under my eVent jacket.  I had my Seirus face mask and my new fleecy North Face hat.
 When I would get on the ridgeline the wind would get pretty brutal, and I would pull the hood on my jacket up to help block the wind.  My eyelashes got a little frozen, but I didn't want the weather to be an excuse for not running some birthday miles!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Triumph over the Sucky Day

Reasons why I rock.

Three persons call off work this morning. I manage to call one other person in, and keep the work flow going until the few people working second shift arrive.

About one hour into my work shift, I have two unexpected bathroom stops. My stomach is roiling. Am I getting the dreaded Hanta rotovirus that is going around? AND I have to work all weekend?
I get some Tums and Imodium to calm that down.

But now what can I eat, and have for lunch? My planned lunch and snacks are: dried apricots, some roasted seaweed, cut up veggies, wasabi'd dried peas.  Lunch is zero point vegetable soup, beef bulgogi and rice.  All extremely high fiber foods that I do not need to, or want to put into my little tummy at this point.

My choice is something out in town.  But I am determined to stay on my WW points.  And it has to be something easy on the stomach.  I look up the WW points for  Taco Bell, then a plain Arby's roast beef sandwich.  Then I resolve I should just go to Subway for a turkey sub.

I REALLY want a ooey goooey grilled cheese sandwich but I am determined to stay within my WW points. And I want hot chocolate. (I'm very whiny in my head about this time.)

So I go to MTO Sheetz.  I get a toasted 6 inch turkey sub with cheese.  I get a coffee with some hot chocolate stuff in it, plus some artificial sweeteners.  I DO NOT get the chips or the "Kitchen Sink" huge cookie that I want to sink my face into.

The sub and coffee is enough and my stomach handles it.

Back to work. I've given up on them and decide they can all do whatever they want.  I decide I do not want to run after work. I've had a crappy work day.

I get in my car. Nope, I can not run. But I don't like writing no run on my schedule without a good reason. Besides, I took a zero day on Monday because of a shitty work day.

A podcast rallies me.  The interviewee is saying she's worked out every day for 40 years and no, many of those days she has not enjoyed it.

Okay, I'll just get home and get my running clothes on.

I got down to the treadmill, put on "Farm Kings" and made it thru one episode.  Actually, the running was fine.  I started watching another recording, something called "The Taste" and didn't uncover the treadmill display until 4.6 miles.

4.6 miles? I can do anything for 0.4 miles.  Strangely, it doesn't even bother me.

Ha! So there.  Not only did I not let my sucky work day (and physical ailments)  undermine my eating choices for the day, but I also got my run in.

Glad I did not allow my emotional state dictate my eating and my mental attitude to dictate my work out.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

20(14) Things I want to Try/Accomplish in 2014

1. Take a picture each month and store them somewhere I can find them!
2. Finish TWOT
3.  Write a letter to the future me
4.  Get to my goal weight
5. Get into a routine with yoga
6, Finish Reverse Ring
7. Finish Zion 100
8. Have a day at the spa for myself
9. Go on a solo adventure
10. Run a sub 26 minute 5K
11. Paint the hallway and hang my running T-shirt quilt on the wall
12. Organize my photos-whoops, this probably could be lumped under #1
13. Expand and promote my blog
14. Declutter my house, room by room, area by area