Day 9 of Gratitude…Rumi

I’ll be honest, I never really heard of Rumi up until a couple of years ago.  I just happened to be in a bookstore and picked up a collection of his sayings.  They are simple and to the point, so I thought I would share.  So often we look for advice in others that aren’t walking the same path as you.  Learn to listen to your inner self and know that your path is just as great and meaningful as someone else’s path.  Find those that are on the same path.  Happy Miles to You!!

 

 

Day 6 of Gratitude ~ Heroines

Happy Tuesday my friends!  I hope the start of your week is a good one.  I am getting excited about this weeks race and it looks to be a clear but cold day.  Better than rainy and cold.  Planning for two miles today and some strength exercises.

Something to think about….

“Above all be the heroine of your life, not the victim”.

~ Nora Ephron

Happy Miles to You!!!

Monday Motivation…Be A Bright Light

Happy Monday Everyone!  Hope the start of your week was a good one.  I always find that being positive is infectious and a great way to lead by example.  A smile can always make someone’s day.

There are two ways of spreading light:  to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.  ~  Edith Wharton

Both are important!  Happy Miles to You!!

 

 

 

 

Mileage Recap ~ 15 – 21 October…To Bling or Not to Bling: Is That the Question?

Hello everyone and happy Sunday!  I hope your days are getting spookier as we approach the 31st!  Yes, I’m still a kid at heart.  I love this season, it’s just one awesomeness after the another.  At least that is my perspective.  I have already got my Halloween cards out and have brought in jack-o-lantern cookies to the office.  I was good this year and have only bought two Fall baking magazines.  It’s tempting for me to walk by the magazine stands and not pick one up.  Baking is something that tires me out but also brings me intense joy.  I tend to select recipes that challenge me and can take longer than reading the back of a box and popping it in the oven.  There is something about creating a treat that looks nice and is fun to eat.  But I will admit, after I create I often find myself saying ~ yeah I don’t need to do this again.  I get over that feeling and before I know it I’m back in the kitchen creating again. There’s just something about when the seasons start to change that’s invigorating.  The air is cool and crisp and the colors of Fall are just brilliant.  I love decorating my space with the warm glow of lights and candlelight.  It’s such a warm feeling.  Every year I say I’m going to do less, but that never seems to happen and it’s not lost on me that what goes up….must come down!

Back on the mileage train this week.  I was very well-rounded.  I walked, ran and got in some outdoor cycling. I have been waiting to get on the bike outside, but the weather was a little iffy.  This weekend had a little rain, but I was able to get out and complete 10 miles on the bike.  I pumped up the tires, oiled the chain and put the rack back on the Subie.  It’s amazing when you don’t use certain muscles in a while how bad they hurt doing something you think is fairly harmless.  My neck is screaming from bending forward!  I forgot too ~ I woke up and my neck was hurting so bad I thought I was getting a sore throat…then I remembered…ooohh yeah.  Funny how that happens.  I went back out to the Mt. Vernon trail wearing my long sleeve Autumn jersey ~ which was fine for the first five miles then I got hot.  It’s so cute with it’s leaves.  I had to take it slow on some of the turns because there were so many wet leaves on the winding path.  The last thing I wanted to do was wipe out.  Glad to say ~ no falling for me.  Always a good thing.

I have been trying to find different riding events around the DC area and finally decided to drop in to a cycling store close by.  I had taken my bike to get serviced at another store during the summer not realizing there was one right down the street.  I love when I go in to a cycling store.  How can I say this…some women like jewelry.  Not.this.gal.  Nothing like carbon, aluminum and spandex to get this heart pumping. The main reason for going in the store was to just see if they had some group rides or at least a schedule of some rides in the area.  I ended up getting into an hour-long conversation about rides, bikes and something that I have wanted a long time…the cycling trainer.  For those of you who cycle know what the trainer is.  It’s a small piece of equipment that you can place your bike on and ride…inside.  When I lived in Phoenix I could ride all year round.  That’s not the case in Virginia.  Trainers come in a lot of different price ranges.  The ones at the store ranged from $199 to about $1500 ~ from the basic to the extreme.  Think Peloton™…only better.  Buying a good bike is a lot like buying a car.  You walk around, kick the tires, and of course look at the prices.  New models, colors and better brakes are all part of the game.  One is lighter and more streamlined.  I’m walking around the store talking trainers and the manager brings me to a bike set up with the $599 trainer.  Basically the bike is in the trainer and hooked up to a tv that has races…all around the world.  So while your ride you’re participating in the race.  Not only that, you can race against your friends and family…anywhere.  It’s better than Peloton, because you’re on your own bike.  The manager and an associate tell me to get on and give it a whirl.  My mind was saying no (it was too tall for me) but my body said…oh yeah.  I got on that thing and started riding ~ my cute little Avatar was in some race in Italy.  As I started pedaling I could just feel the smile across my face getting bigger.  I was literally giddy ~ almost laughing. They both just laughed and said I don’t think we have ever seen a reaction like that on any customer.  They said my face just immediately brightened up.  I’m laughing now just thinking about it…  It was pure joy.  Like I said, some women like diamonds, but a good bike and an awesome trainer are a girls best friend.

You’ll be happy to know I left empty-handed and acquired the information I came for…group rides.  They have one every Saturday and from there I can learn about other events in the area.  So for now I will have to just dream…maybe one day.

Back down on earth I have signed up for my next running race in the area.  That brings me to the title of this post!  Bling.  For most of my races there has been some sort of bling associated and don’t forget the t-shirt.  I don’t do races just for the bling…but come on man…it’s cool.  It seems like the medals keep getting cooler by the year too.  Sometimes I think I see a medal and I’m like…I’m going to run an event just to get that medal.  Hmmm, maybe not the whole reason to do an event, but it is fun.  How do you feel about it?  Do you only choose events that have bIing?  I didn’t get anything for the Vermont half marathon.  Just a t-shirt.  Insert snappy comment here _________!  I have signed up for a 10k run on Veteran’s Day, sponsored by the local RWB here in DC.  RWB stands for Red, White and Blue.  It is an organization that sponsors a lot of different activities for anybody who wants to join, but there is a heavy veteran population in the group.  It’s a good way to get involved in events and meet people who have the same interests.   The veteran day 10k will pass by some of our most treasured veteran memorials, so I’m looking forward to November 11th.  Most likely will only be a t-shirt, unless I’m within the top three in my age group.  I checked last years paces for women 50 – 54 and something tells me I’m going to be happy with my t-shirt.  Hey, I’m stoked.  I’m a veteran and I’m alive.  I’ll take the t-shirt any day of the week.

This week’s miles came to 20.88 and a total of 43.16 so far for the month.  I hope to break last months miles!  I have completed 5700.73 in my journey with 5614.27 gratefully remaining.  I hope this post finds you in an Autumn state of mind.  Now to get baking.  Happy Miles to You!!

I know I’ve played this song before…but so appropriate!

Mileage Recap ~ 17 – 23 September….I’m Only Happy When It Rains

Hello everyone and Happy Sunday!

Can we all just say it?  It’s taper time baby!!!

T – A – P – E – R…such a lovely word.  It means that the hard training for an upcoming run is through and it’s time to slow down, listen to the body and reflect about the upcoming race.  Okay, maybe that’s just a bit too Zen..but it sure sounds good.

Event status update:

I finally heard back, but to be honest all I have to go on is, yes you’re registered and more information will be coming.  Hmmmm…. I mean the organizer has been nice an all, but could this be any more laid back?  Maybe this is how they do things in the “Kingdom” as they say.  I was told that I could sign in and pick up a T-Shirt on Saturday…uh okay.  Where?  No address.  I mean ~ throw me a bone man.  Grid coordinate?  Smoke signal?  Anything.  Map?  The last words were, “if you need anything give me a holler”.  I know where the race is starting and the time and that’s about it for now.  Don’t you just love surprises?  I mean, truly this will be one for the books I’m sure!

The temps at the beginning of the week were fairly hot and dry.  Towards the end of the week I could feel Fall just trying to take hold.  I don’t know about you, but I love the changing of the seasons.  There is something to celebrate about each one.

I did a 3 and 5 mile run during the week and decided to complete my long run on Sunday.  Of course during the week it was nice and dry and today, well….it was raining.  The temperature was 60 when I got to the trail, but the rain!  It wasn’t a sprinkle either, it was squishy shoe running weather.  Do I have any rainy day runners out there?  I love running in the rain.  I could have taken it inside, but the bottom line is the weather for the half might be rainy as well and what better way to train, then real time.   Sometimes you just got to do it.

I didn’t get out to the trail until 10 am this morning and much to my delight there weren’t any runners.  I had the trail to myself, at least for a while.  A few cyclists and a couple of runners.  The big disappointment was the iPod wasn’t working!  I know there are people who never run with music.  They say it will mess with your cadence.  I know this is true!  Sometimes when a fast song comes on I speed up!  I have tried to run without music, but I find it’s just more enjoyable for me to run with music.  I was ready to go and the darn thing seems to have crapped out!  Yikes!  I was really disappointed.  Not only was I going to run the whole 10 miles in the rain, but without music too!  Crikey!  The first five miles were decent feeling miles.  No pain and a good even flow.  There is this wooden plank bridge around mile 2.5 that crosses a marshy area.  It was spooky with the rain and being alone.  I won’t lie, I was looking around making sure there weren’t any “creatures” hiding in the swamp!  Maybe alligators.  I just looked it up…they say some people have seen them here in Virginia, could be climate change.  You’re Googling right now aren’t you?  Hey, you never know.  My last five miles weren’t too bad.  A little bit of touch and go but over all decent.   My pace for this run was 11:43.  Not bad and I will do better.  Just think The Little Engine that Could!  I think I can, I think I can.  I did pick up new water belt (Nathan™) that was much lighter then my old one.  I’m not into carrying my water bottle in my hand.

Some photos:

New water belt

 

Muddy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Garmin results

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m ready for my next run on 30 September.  I am almost at my halfway point with 19.17 miles left.  I have finished 5638.33 miles in my quest with 5676.67 graciously awaiting.  I like the word quest.  It’s so, Knights of the Round Table sounding.  I hope this post finds you with Fall in your heart ~ brilliant colors of red, brown and orange dancing around and filling up your senses.  Happy Miles to You!!

Although a little dark, this song sums up today’s run nicely!  “I’m Only Happy When It Rains”

 

 

 

Mileage Recap ~ 10 – 16 Sept…Almost Halfway There….

Happy Sunday Everyone!  Can you believe that September is almost halfway done?  Do you think that time goes by faster as we age?  I’m not sure about that one.  You’ll have to chime in and tell me what you think.

First, let me say how lucky we are in Alexandria that we didn’t get any residual fall out from hurricane Florence.  My thoughts and prayers go out to those that were directly affected in the Carolinas.  My home is Aiken, SC so the outcome of the storm is near and dear to my heart.  My sister and her family live in Charleston, SC and they had to come inland to stay with my parents.  I am grateful they are safe.  If you had anyone impacted by hurricane Florence, I hope they are well.

This weeks training continues on as I prepare for the Kingdom Half Marathon in Newport, VT.  It has been a bit frustrating trying to get information from the promoters.  One thing is for certain, this isn’t like any race I’ve done before.  After many calls and emails I finally heard something back from the organizer.  At least I know it’s still a go, but not a whole lot more.  It’s very laid back which can have it’s good points but then it’s frustrations too.  I feel like I’m an episode of Wayne’s World….Dude…where’s the race???

Fabulous!!!

Hey, I plan to be at the start line 0900 hours.  I shouldn’t be so surprised by this…I’m the type of person that would put a map on the wall and throw a dart.  Wherever it lands, hey that’s the next adventure.

The unexpected semi~injury of the week took place not on the road or trail but coming out of the DC metro on my way to work.  I get off at the National Archives stop (because I work at the National Archives!) and often the escalators are not working.  I tend to gravitate to the escalator that’s not working for two reasons; 1) you get a mini workout climbing the stairs and 2) it’s less crowded ~ no one wants to take the broken escalator.  There I was climbing the stairs and I was killing it …then about 3/4 of the way up I fell.  I mean I really fell.  I’m glad I was able to break my fall with my hands.  It hurt too ~ I landed on my shin bones.  One leg was bleeding.  It hurt.  There was a guy behind me and his eyes were just so wide!  Lol!  He just stared and asked if I was okay.  Truth be told, I was more worried about my hands touching the escalator stairs then the bruises and bleeding I incurred.  I picked myself back up and just kept going.  Yeah…you’re going to have those days, but I’m okay.

I continue to be on a vegetarian diet.  I make it sound like it’s a quest…I guess it is to some extent.  It’s only been a little over two weeks.  I wanted to see how I would perform physically.  So far, I do feel lighter.  I’m not craving anything ~ although I was thinking of turkey legs on my long run.

This weeks miles came to a total of 10.93 with my long run of 6 miles on Saturday.  It was a decent run with the last three miles being touch and go, meaning the last three contained a bit of walking.  My pace was 11:48.  Not pleased, but I continue to strive to be better.   I have completed 5619.67 with 5695.33 miles gratefully remaining.  I am 37.83 shy of my halfway mark.  I hope this post finds you with much joy in your heart.

Meet me halfway:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mileage Recap ~ 13 – 19 August…Ready for the Quantico 12K

Hello everyone and Happy Sunday to you!!

My training for the Quantico 12K on 25 August is going fairly well.  The pain I have been experiencing is mellowing a bit and I continue to keep moving forward to this next mileage goal.  This week’s training wasn’t bad at all.  I started out with 3.5 on the treadmill and then went to the Mt. Vernon trail twice this week – once for some speed work and then my long run.  Wednesday was a long work day.  I taught yoga for the first time during lunch and I had a function in the evening which threw my training days off a bit, so this week’s long run took place on Sunday instead of my Saturday. The temperatures cooled off a bit, but it was still humid.  The kind of humidity that you’re good for the first couple of miles then it becomes a sweat fest.  At least for me.

This upcoming Saturday is the Quantico 12K.  I received an email during the week informing me about packet pick up.  Unfortunately, they say to pick up your packet on Friday ~ with closing time being around 7 pm.  Quantico is about 23 miles from where I live in Alexandria.  It seems fairly harmless until you add in DC traffic on a Friday.  The website had a caveat that packets should be picked up that Friday as they can’t ensure you will get yours the morning of…great.  I don’t know.  I’m seriously hedging my bets to pick it up that morning.  The race doesn’t start until 7:25, so we’ll see…..  I’d hate to have to drive all the way out there after work then drive back.  It just seems like a pain in the you know where!

Yoga class at the National Archives

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From the site about the 12k course:

Course

Runners will begin the 7.45 mile journey at 7:25 a.m., on Elrod Road parallel to the Parade Deck near the bleachers. The Quantico 12K will head south before making a right turn on Engineer Road and entering the OCS trails. Terrain will switch from paved streets to gravely paths. The 12K begins a 140 foot climb to its maximum elevation of 219 feet starting at the half mile mark and leveling off 1.5 miles into the run. Making a left onto Iwo Jima Trail runners will reach the first of three water points on the course just before mile 2. A slight downhill from Mile 3 to 4.5 features a 70 foot elevation drop before another short climb. The second water point is located near mile 4 at scenic Buffalo Pond, the furthest point in the course. From this location, runners will follow Engineer Road and begin to overlap with the run portion of the Quantico Tri and include the final water point as part of a two mile downhill. The course makes a left as runners pass the OCS Obstacle Course, before making two quick right turns on the way to the finish line located on the grassy PT field.

 

So, there you have it…that’s what I will be doing next Saturday morning.  I’m excited because this is the first event I am participating since moving to Virginia.

This week’s long run was uneventful and okay.  If I must be honest, my heart wasn’t 100% in it today.  I was a bit tired and just seemed to lose gas after three miles.  There were a lot of stops and starts, but I still made my goal.  Mentally, I just didn’t will myself to get it done like I wanted to.  But, I still pulled 5.10 this morning.  My pace was an average of 11:45.

As I approach my halfway point in my journey I have signed up for another event in September to celebrate.  I have always wanted to go to Vermont, so on 30 September I will run the “Fly to Pie ~ Kingdom half”.  The tag line says “doin’ the dirt”.  Anytime there is “dirt” in the title….it’s bound to be fun (sic).

A few fun photos from today’s run:

I love the entrance to the trail.

Hmmm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I remain grateful in my journey.  It’s easy to get frustrated and lose focus on the end result ~ but still I continue on.  I have 84.54 miles left until the halfway mark and 5742.04 remaining in my journey.  I hope this post finds you well, continuing on and loving every minute.

Listened to this today on my run…just throwing it out to the universe…