Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Mantua Dam Race 2011 and other Miscellaneous Stuff

The only reason I run this race year after year is because I get a t-shirt that says, "I survived the Dam race". Well, that and it's really fun to talk about the dam race. My kids really like asking me about the dam race. It's become a big hit and we had a lot of participants from my little neighborhood. They also had a record number of people with more than 325.

I got 3rd in my age group and finished with a time of 44:24. That just means that all the fast runners stayed home that day. It's 5 miles around a lake all on a rocky dirt road. I was pleased with my time with it being almost 2 minutes faster than last year. Plus it was just fun having so many people there that I knew.

Phil, Tori Shannon, Heidi, me, Jodi, Heather and Rob.

Catching up with those we didn't get in the first picture...
Phil, Heidi, Tori, Shannon, Robyn, me, Shandra, Julie, Audry, Jodi, and Shawna.

I bagged my long run because I wasn't in the mood and did a long ride instead. I actually didn't plan it very well and didn't wear my padded shorts or bring enough water. I ended up having to detour and stop at a park to refill my bottle. It ended up being over 31 miles and my rear end was really happy when we were done.

I took my ride out to our local Bird Refuge. It's my new favorite destination. There is so much beauty there and so many birds. I feel like an old person getting all excited about birds, but it really was thrilling watching an enormous pelican spread its wings and land gracefully on the water without so much as a splash. Or watch the long legged stilts birds walk along and dip their heads in the water to catch fish. I also saw birds dive bombing into the water. And there were huge flocks of brightly colored finches dancing in their synchronized way above me in the sky. Seriously, a really cool place to ride and the perfect way to experience it.

I've been trying to get in one trail run a week, one longish barefoot run, and a 20ish mile bike ride every week. Then I can just fill in the rest with whatever I feel like as long as I'm getting in at least two days of weight training. While it's not a full workout, I am really digging this quick yoga routine after my runs as of late.

This trail run turned into a mostly hike until the top of the canyon. I ran the hills until it just got too steep and my heart rate wouldn't settle down. So I hiked until it I felt like I could run again, which was almost to the top. I had some good 18-20 minute miles in there. It was also hot. You can see my "glow" (which translated is the lady word for sweaty as a pig). But once I reached the other side of the mountain, the sun went behind the clouds, a slight breeze picked up and it was bearable.

The rocky, sagebrush filled area turned into more forest like conditions on the other side of the mountain. Simply beautiful.
I live in a really beautiful place. Don't you wan to come run with me?

There are definite advantages to not planning my runs or having a training plan. But long runs in the summer in the mountains probably need to be better planned. I finally ran out of my little water supply and called for a ride home. 7.5 miles and 2 sweaty hours later I was really craving a cold bath.

** What have you been up to?
** Are you following a plan right now or just winging it?
** What's your next big race?

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Randomness and food

I don't have much to say that's on a specific topic so you get the randomness that is my life lately.
* I did a new long run record of 7 miles barefoot. I picked the streets carefully and used the sidewalks at points, but I am still counting it. I don't think I'm going to be able to do the Top of Utah half barefoot, but I think I need to find a 10K because I'm pretty sure I could do that before the end of the summer.
*My hair and nails are growing at a much rapider rate since I've stopped training so hard. I think my body has finally recovered.
*I have been eating like I'm still training hard and it is not good.

*I forgot to post this awesome triple chocolate cheesecake that my husband made me after the second marathon. It was so rich that a tiny slice was sufficient and it lasted forever even sharing it with lots of people.

*I did a trail run that went wrong. I took a wrong turn and the trail ended several hundred feet above where I was supposed to be. I made my own switchbacks until it was just too steep and then skied down on the shale rock trying not to create a land slide. It wasn't until I got home after that 10 mile run that I realized that I had created a HUGE (softball sized) hole in my tights right around my hip/butt area. I was on trails for the most part but ran at least 2.5 miles down the canyon and on busy streets until home. I was mortified.

Other than that, it was a great trail run.

That ended with a beautiful sunset.

*The garden is doing awesome.

We've eaten broccoli and peas and lots of lettuce. There is an orange tomato out there and the peppers are getting big. We've also enjoyed our cilantro. It's an organic garden so far. We've let the chickens out to eat the grasshoppers and everything seems to be going well. Sometimes when I look at it all I can see is work. The weeds seem to be never ending. But I really do enjoy having all that fresh produce right out the back door.

Salmon salad. Yum.

Black bean tortilla pizza with cilantro and avocado.

Jenni-O turkey kielbasa with broccoli and peas.

***What have you been up to?

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Just to catch up...

Summer has made my life crazy. I thought May and December were bad, but this summer is kicking my butt. And I haven't had time to get on the computer like I used to. I need to find a time when I don't feel guilty sitting here while the kids are around. We have a no TV rule during the summer until after dinner. So it means that we're doing other things to keep them busy and happy. It's a good thing, but it means I feel guilty if I'm just sitting there on the computer. I have missed keeping up with my good friends and am going to catch up with you all. I've been looking forward to not having a schedule and sleeping in and staying up late and eating popsicles with the kids, but this crazy life is just about doing me in. My daughters still had ballet until the 3rd week of June when they had their performance. It was a masterpiece and even my husband and dad went away loving it.

My husband said he'd deny it if he was ever confronted, but he even teared up a few times. If you know my husband, you'd know that this must really have been some ballet. I loved it because my daughters were on stage genuinely smiling because they were doing what they loved. It wasn't until that was over that it felt like summer.
I got my own fly fishing rod this year and have been totally enjoying myself with my husband fishing. We're a catch and release couple and just have fun being out there. It really is funny how excited I can get about casting my fly right where I want it, see my fly sitting there on the water and watching a fish come up to the surface to get it. Really, really fun. Plus it's time with my husband sharing something he loves to do.

I've been really taking it easy and just enjoying myself. And I might mention that I am not injured. My IT band hurt 3 days after the marathon on a little 2 mile run but I've had zero issues since. Yay! Almost every run has been completely barefoot with the exception of a run that I did back to back and my feet were not having it and a Freedom 5K that had a reputation for all sorts of different, harsh terrain. Did not disappoint. We ran on rough gravel roads, in farmer's fields, on corn stubble, over hay bales blocking the trail, and through 20 yards of shin deep mud and gush. It was so much fun!

My time was 27:25. The only frustration that I had was not knowing at what point in the race we were at. No mile markers and of course no watch. So when I came upon a drink station, I took a sip and walked to throw it away. It mush have been at mile 2.5 because before I knew it we were done. If I had known, I don't think I would have stopped. Oh well.

Friends in the neighborhood that ran the race.
Heidi, me, Jodi, and Mont

Pancake breakfast from the fire department. YUM!

None of my runs have been over 6 miles and I've been ok with that. This week it needs to change though as I have a 1/2 marathon at the end of August. I had wanted to do it barefoot, but don't know yet if that will be possible or not. I seem to be stuck at 6 miles. I'll just have to wait and see.

I have gone on three 20 mile bike rides, gone to 1 cycling class (darn those early mornings!), and lifted weights 3 days a week since the marathon. I have also had an infected tooth that knocked me out for a weekend and then flu like symptoms from the antibiotic that I took because of the infected tooth. Still working on that one.

I've also been able to attend a part of both my son's and my daughter's religious camps that they attended. Both were great.

During my son's camp they did several service projects. One of them was working on the new mountain biking trail that I've been co in charge of as part of our city's biking committee.

It was great to have about 50 boys and 20 leaders cutting new trail that day. There's about a mile and a half of rideable trail now and it is going to be awesome in the next couple of years. It's a big piece of property with huge potential.

Of course my interest is running it, but hey, you never know. I may get brave and even try to ride it as well.