Mileage Recap – 16 ~ 30 November…Pondering, Goals and Changes

Pondering

The holiday season is in full swing.  I made it back from all my traveling in November and now I’m just trying to catch up by decorating the house and getting ready for the season.  I love to decorate for Christmas.  I’m one of those….I have so many decorations and I love the warmth it brings to a home during this time of year.  But sometimes it just gets a little crazy.  Too much stuff, downsizing a bit, and not enough places to put said stuff.  So, I’ve been getting rid of some of the things that have seen better days, I no longer want or need.  Such a freeing feeling to get rid of stuff.

I love driving and just looking at the countryside.  Driving up through California, Oregon and Washington.  The United States is a beautiful country.  My final leg of travel was driving up to Seattle.  My daughter attends college there and this was the first time I got to see her dance in a college atmosphere.  It is wonderful to see her grow in her profession and to see the young lady she is becoming.  Absolutely magical.

November is the month for feeling grateful.  I always smile at this because being grateful is a 365 thing.  I am grateful for many things in this life.   But it did get me thinking as I was tooling around Seattle.  Seattle is a cool place, but there are a lot of homeless and just lost people.  There are the homeless and then there were people just out of it.  Young people.  I feel deeply when I see someone just standing in a catatonic state.  People walking by not really caring or dealing.  I guess you can’t  do much when there is such an over burden.  But it does get you thinking about where these people come from, their families if they have them and why they are in this state.  So I got to thinking what am I really grateful for…and I would have to say mental clarity and choice.  With mental clarity we have the ability to chose the path we want to follow.  Such a simple thing, but without it we just are occupying space so-to-speak.

Goals for 2016

My major goal for 2016 is to complete a century ride.  I have done some research and found a training plan that I think will serve me well.  I have decided this coming year I will focus more on cycling.  Looking at what is required for a century there won’t be a lot of time for running.  I’m excited and look forward to this new goal.

Changes

If you read this blog and blog on Word Press you know it’s easy to get carried away on the categories.  I had way too many categories and it was becoming overwhelming trying to keep up with them.  So I’m decided to keep the blog basic.  No more months I’m just going to keep everything under the current year.  So 2016 will have most of the posts with a standard menu selection for races and such but that’s it and I hope it will keep me sane.

The first part of November was weak for mileage but I was able to finish strong or somewhat strong.  While in Seattle I got some good walking miles in…yes I’m counting those.  I walked 11 miles one day and 8 the next.  Came back and hit the asphalt and was able to pick up some nice rides easing my way back.

I picked up 53.18 the last half of November taking me to a total of 61.29 for the month.  This leaves me Thankfully with 8,422.38 remaining.  Happy Miles to You!

Mileage Recap ~ 1 – 15 November Honoring the Past, Present and Looking to the Future

November is turning out to be a traveling month for me.  After I graduated college I went into the US Army and was very fortunate to have visited and lived in different countries and states.  It’s quite lovely to explore another country or state and make life long friends.  It’s even better when you are able to maintain those friendships over the years.  I’ve been lucky in that respect.  Of course social medias have helped in the effort as well.  With all the traveling and moving, it hasn’t been easy to get back home and visit family as often as I want and should.  It’s been far and between sometimes.  So with my new life endeavors I have made a point to make going home a priority.  No more three-year stints at being gone.

My home town, is Aiken, SC. An old horse town with old money and the Savannah river site just down the road.  When I moved there all those years ago it was quite different from the town today.  Very small and not much happening.  Still, it was a good place to grow up.  Now its a bit larger and still holding on to its quaintness.

I have been fortunate to maintain friendships with some high school friends that will be going on 30 years shortly:-) All of my direct family lives there and it is always a joy for me to go back and visit.  See everybody and of course hear what is going on in and around town.  It is joyful and bittersweet all in the same moment. As I walked downtown I can still remember so many fine memories of people and places.  The air was brisk, the tall pine trees, old and new people bustling around town.  An overcast day with just enough chill in the air to give you that nostalgic feeling of the holidays that are about to come.  I love this time of year. Change.  Leaves falling to the ground.  Summer has long gone and by a is replaced by a different type of beauty.  I’ve been coming back to this town over the years.  Some things change and others not so much. Some things have improved and others hold fast.

I decided to drive from Arizona to South Carolina.  I am one of these people who love to drive.  There is a freedom I love to driving. I love it.  I will admit it did get a little tiring and it is hard to “get mileage” in after you’ve been driving for 8 – 10 hours a day.  So the mileage was minimal but rewarding.  Rewarding in the aspect that I got to reflect.  Just to slow down and take it at my pace, adjust to the new environment and reflect on how things have changed in my life and in the things around me.  I call them spiritual miles, and they might just be the most rewarding, important miles to be had.  Some where in hotel fitness rooms and others running around the neighborhood in Aiken.

Today I turned 48.  I am blessed.  Blessed to have the physical strength to complete these miles and to roll with the changes.  Something we often take for granted.  I also honor those relationships that have carried me from the past, those that are ongoing and those yet to come.   Only 8.11 miles to log.  Meh, it’s okay.  A little quote I thought I’d share:

When you are through changing, you are through. ~Bruce Barton

Every mile is different, every mile is unique ~ 8,475.56 miles await.  Happy Miles to You.

Be Thankful

Last week I attended a memorial service at the base chapel for a man that I worked with but had limited interaction.  The two times I spoke with him he was always very pleasant and helpful.  I didn’t know him personally, but I felt that I should attend to show support for his family; to show him brotherly/sisterly love in death and to support the very creed and essence that we hold so dearly in the military ~ to honor each other.

I didn’t know he was sick.  During the time that I dealt with him he was dying of cancer, but he chose to continue working as long as he could.  One day he was there and then I noticed he wasn’t around anymore.  What strength he must have had to continue on and help people all the while knowing he was loosing a battle with cancer.

The memorial service was upbeat.  People remembering with photos depicting a young man’s life as it journeyed to an older more expierenced life.  The things he held dear and nurtured.  He loved his family and he grew and cared for his pecan trees.

I am thankful for many things.  One of which is to use my running in a caring and positive way.  Every moment is a precious gift.  Someone once said to me life is great ~ as long as you have your health.  I guess in many respects this is true.  Pain and suffering tend to put a different spin on things.  As we left the chapel they offered pecans from his pecan trees.  I took one and I will save it as a reminder that something so small, with the proper nurturing and passion can become so massive if you have faith and patience.

I am thankful.

I leave you with a quote that was on the back of the memorial service program which I find lovely and worth sharing.  It was written by Thomas Chalmers, a Scottish mathmetician and leader of the Free Church of Scotland, 1780 ~ 1847:

Live for something.  Do good and leave behind you a monument of virtue that the storm of time can never destroy.  Write your name in kindness, love and mercy on the hearts of thousands you come in contact with year by year, you will never be forgotten.  No, your name, your deeds will be as legible on the hearts you leave behind and the stars on the brow of evening.  Good deeds will shine as the stars of heaven.

Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving ~ Many happy thankful miles to you.

Mileage Recap 17 ~ 23 Nov

I started “counting” my mileage over a year ago.  My goal for 2013 is to have logged 1,000 total miles from my 11,315 mile goal.  I’m pleased to announce I’ve completed 939.81 total miles since I started; 868.74 miles for 2013 alone.  I think I will have no problem picking up 60.19 miles to reach that goal. 

My long run this weekend was 5 miles and it was my first cold run of the season at a crisp 31 degrees.  The wind wasn’t blowing but I still felt that bite.  Had no trouble breathing but the face was a little numb and I’m not ready to pull out the face mask just yet.  I can remember when I first started running in the cold, it took a bit of getting used to.  Now I don’t fret ~ just saddle up an move out.  We used to call that good training in the Army.

Sunday ~ rest

Monday ~ 3 miles treadmill

Tuesday ~ crossfit and yoga

Wednesday ~ 3 miles treadmill

Thursday ~ Kettle bells and heaven help me indoor softball

Friday ~ Rest

Saturday ~ 5 miles  

May this week find you at peace and Thankful ~ the best miles are hard earned. 

Passion Post ~ #4 Time Waits for No One

I have been going to the same lady for my alterations for at least 3 years.  She is from Korea and is around the same age as me. Think of all the people you come in contact with for small errands on a continual basis.  How many of them do we really get to know on a more personal level? Do you even know their names?  Do you take the time or do you think it’s important to wonder?  I think we all fall into the “I’m in a hurry and I really don’t want to know the specifics” trap.

When she opened her store I was grateful.  I was tired of going to my present alterations place because they had made a series of costly mistakes.  This place was close to my daughter’s school and wasn’t as busy so I thought I would give it a try.  I was glad I did!  Every time I walk in she greets me with a big smile.  She is a beautiful woman.  Petite, bobbed black hair and high cheek bones.  But she isn’t small.  Her personality and her self-confidence make her a giant.  If there weren’t other customers in the store we would chat.  In these past three years, I’ve learned about her family and the different jobs she’s held.  With every adventure there is a gleam in her eye.  It’s very uplifting.

I’m at the point in my life and career that I’m starting to think about other things I might want to do besides what I’m doing.  Career change or a possible move somewhere else.  Who knows.  So as she was fitting me I just asked her, were you scared when you started your business?  Without hesitation she said no, I’m never scared.  I was taken aback by her quick response.  Then she continued with the biggest smile; I have a heart condition (that she shared with two other siblings) there is always a chance I might not be here tomorrow.  If I want to do it, I do it.  Her brother died at 26 and her sister at 42.  She said again, I don’t wait, I pray about it and leave it in God’s hands. I remember her telling me about the heart condition.  This is what happens when you get to know people, you learn little things about them.  I began to think how easy it is to put your dreams, or those little adventures, aside always making excuses or just saying maybe I’ll get to it tomorrow.  Even when we are physically fit we sometimes make excuses of why we can’t or won’t.  She was a good reminder of that today.  Then she said, “you’re going to think I’m crazy“.  I laughed and said you have to be kidding me:)  She keeps a bucket list, of all the “adventures” she wants to try.  I absolutely love it when people describe their actions as adventures.  It shows hunger and passion.

Here’s to passion every step of-the-way.  Happy miles to you.

Because I Can

I’m starting this new page to follow Mary Mosso who on 2 Oct 2013 embarked on a 14 month journey to walk across America.  How neat is that?  I often thought that on my journey I would like to take some of my miles across America as well.  I’m excited to follow her adventures and progress.  Her FaceBook page can be found here:

Because I can

I look forward to writing about her extraordinary journey.

AstroTurf Meet Knees Mileage Recap 10 ~ 16 Nov

Before my marathon a co-worker asked if I would like to play “indoor softball”.  Since I played on the summer work team (outside mind you) I thought this would be another good way to uh…mix things up.  Now the only sports I’ve ever played “indoors” is basketball and volleyball.  So nothing could have prepared me for the evil, known as indoor “softball”.  Ladies and Gents…let me be the first to tell you, softball wasn’t meant to be played indoors.  Oh no, no, no! 

I enter the indoor facility to find a walled area with a net enclosing the “field” and AstroTurf.  So, I’m looking at this and think okay, this is different but let’s see where this goes.  My co-worker friend comes up to me and starts explaining the “rules” which were as follows:

1.  You can play it off the net ~ what?

2.  If you hit the wall where it says homerun, well that’s a home run ~ okay.

3.  When you run to first base you can over shoot it as long as you stay between the wall and the red line ~ there’s about 8 inches of space:\

4.  Oh and it’s hard to get use to the AstroTurf ~ no kidding.

Oh AstroTurf, how do I hate thee…let me count the ways.  When I stepped on to the “field” I noticed the bounce.  Oohh this is kind of neat.  I started frolicking around like some pony in the meadow.  Wow, can you imagine running on this stuff for a long distance I exclaimed.  This would be so easy on my…wait for it….knees!

The game begins and I do something called take a base ~ I have no idea what I did but I was able to get on base without hitting ~ sorry some strange rule and it wasn’t a “walk” either ~ whatever.  The ball is hit…I’m off to second.  As I approached second I began to stop.  I stopped alright.  Did I mention AstroTurf will decide when you stop?  Since I’ve never run on AstroTurf when my legs stopped, I stopped and I fell only to stop the fall with my knees.  Both knees.  I look down at the damage, okay not too bad but not good either.  I’m safe!  The ball is hit again, I run out to third.  Now third base is about 3 inches from the wall.  Oh, did I mention you can’t slide on AstroTurf?  I didn’t…well let me tell you, there is no sliding on AstroTurf.  No sir.  What the heck was I thinking?  You guessed it, I wasn’t thinking.  The two small knee burns are now two full blown HOLY MOLY, what the He**, that’s going to hurt in the morning, yes it is.

I’ll survive.  So last week and this week have been semi-regulated to elliptical, treadmill and outside.

Sun ~ Rest

Mon ~ 3.43 miles treadmill run

Tues ~ 2 miles elliptical

Wed ~ Fri ~ Rest

Sat ~ 4.08 miles outside run

Total for the week = 9.51 Miles.  Here’s to laughing at every mile ~ 10,386.19 remaining.