Friday, July 20, 2012

More new trails!

I've been introduced to some new trails.  And I love them.  And they are only 10 minutes away.  They are beautiful.  You may not find me on the roads again any time soon.  And it's all thanks to my buddy, Mel.

I've had so much fun with her exploring these new trails.  Last week we did a 10 mile trail run that was great.  I was actually sad that it when it was over.  I felt pretty good.  Here's a few shots of the gorgeous mountainside.  


One week ago, my grandpa passed away.  It's really been a tough couple of weeks watching him suffer and not be himself.  And it's been hard watching my grandma suffer as well.  They live just around the corner from us.  I love them so much and we're really close.  But I know that I'll see him again and until then, he can be my angel.

I was able to run alone on Monday the morning before the viewing and it was nice to be alone with my thoughts on the trail.  There is something about running in nature with the sounds of a river and birds chirping and dirt underfoot that is spiritual.  Maybe it's not that strange after all.  Before there were temples, God spoke to his prophets in the mountains.  They were holy places.  There are times when I feel like the mountains are my sanctuary and are holy to me.  This was one of those days.  It was only a mile and a half up and the return trip, but it was enough time to come back feeling good and refreshed. I look forward to more trips up that mountain and more.  And life will get back to normal around here.

Yesterday I ran with Mel and we did my longest trail run to date.  She sure is patient with me.  15 miles.  7.5 up the mountain and back again.  I am sore.  Pretty darn sore.  But it felt good.  I felt like I had accomplished something.  And I had a great time doing it.

Even the wildflowers are still blooming up that high!

It felt like we were running on the top of the world.  And truthfully, we really were pretty high up there!

After tripping about 20 times and catching myself, I finally biffed it less than a mile from the end.  And boy do I get dirty trail running.  But look how good those toenails look!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

A break from the monotony at the City of Rocks

Every summer I hit a point where I just can't take the heat anymore and I start counting down the days until fall.  I start to hibernate inside my house after a certain point in the morning and don't come out until I have to or until it's evening.  I know.  I'm a big wimp.  I would just rather have it be winter than the heat of summer.  Fortunately mother nature and my husband gave me a reprise that I needed last week.  It rained.  And my husband planned a day trip to the City of Rocks.  We looked online for some trails I could run while we were there and before you knew it I had somewhere new to run as well.  Though I've been doing about 1/2 my miles on trails and they're practically right at my front door, I'm getting sick of them.  I needed somewhere new to run and this was so perfect.  

While the kids and husband were busy climbing on the rock formations, I went for a run.  

I was so caught up in the beauty of the scenery that after about 10 minutes on the trails, I was lost.  I had the map folded up in my pocket, but only the main trails were marked and there were what seemed like a million little trails that were there as well.  I couldn't find half of the landmarks that were on the trail and signs on the map.  I tried to backtrack but couldn't figure out where I'd come from.  I spent over an hour trying to find my way out.  Some trails would just end and I'd backtrack to a different trail.  Some would end on the top of a rock cliff. But everywhere I turned I was met with spectacular views.  Even being lost, I was so happy with somewhere new to run. Eventually I found my way out and asked some campers how to get to a big rock formation where I had planned to meet my family.  It was down the road about a mile.  I'd completely come out pretty far away from where I'd planned to.  It was so much fun, a little scary, and the perfect break from the monotony.  The temperatures were in the 60's.  It was rainy and I was soaking wet from the trees and bushes as well as the rain.

After I'd gotten back with the family, I realized I'd been missing out on the best part of the City of Rocks:  climbing the rocks!  Even that was a little frightening with my kids so close to sheer drop offs.  We picked out a camp site that we thought was perfect and we'll be returning sometime soon for a longer stay. The City of Rocks was well worth the drive out there.  It's like a small Granite Moab.  If you get the chance, you should take a trip out there!

Monday, July 9, 2012

A visit with Julia

Do you ever feel so overwhelmed with things that you want to talk or write about that eventually you end up not doing any of it?  That's how I've felt lately.  There are lots of fun things that have been going on and things I have to say, but when I sit down to write about it, I can't seem to put it together.  So I get up and walk away from the computer.  I've decided just to start somewhere and make it small.

One my favorite things that I've gotten to do recently is have Julia come stay and visit with me. She is getting ready to move at the end of this month and I wanted to have some time with her before she goes.  Not just running time, but other hanging out time as well.

She was so patient with my kiddos and even went to see the movie Brave with us.  We got lots of time to talk and catch up and just relax.  She brought her dogs with her and my kids were in heaven.  Logan really liked Zoe and Caroline really liked Riley.  It was such a fun time. 

We got to run together early the next morning and it was fun showing someone else where I get to run. We went on my favorite trail and even ran back up a part again just for a few extra miles.  Once we got back on pavement I started feeling like crap and the last 2 miles were not very fun.  I couldn't get my breathing under control and couldn't wait to be done.  I really don't know what happened.   I didn't feel like I could complain too much though since Julia had run 20 miles the previous day and this was her back to back day.  She's going to run a 50 miler this fall and I couldn't be more excited for her.  She is such a wise, strong runner even though she's still really young.   

I loved that we got to spend some time together before she leaves.  There are some people you meet through this blogging world that somehow become life long friends.  I feel that with so many of you and was really grateful that I was able to meet Julia in the first place and then continue our friendship.  My kids were teasing me because of our age difference.  (11 years)  But running is the great equalizer and gives us something in common.  It was truly a great weekend!