Monday, November 29, 2010


Poor Sam. As a daycare baby, she has a runny nose almost constantly. She's had hand-foot-mouth twice. A double ear infection needing two rounds of antibiotics. Lots of colds. I'm sure we'll go through our share of other infections this winter too. And while she is amazingly happy even when sick, this weekend it seemed like something was definitely up. Her cough was deep and sounded painful. Her breathing sounded raspy, wheezy. She was crying more often in her sleep and after coughing. Yesterday, she was extra clingy, constantly reaching for 'mama.' So, this morning, despite thinking they would probably end up telling me she had yet another cold, I made a doctor's appointment, just to be safe. And boy, am I glad I did!

Turns out Sam has another double ear infection, and some sort of bronchial virus/infection. The doctor was surprised at how smiley she was during the visit in spite of it all. We did have a bit of screaming when we had to hold her still for 10 minutes while giving her a nebulizer, and then when we had to hold her down so they could do a nose swab to check for RSV, but who can blame her for that? Luckily, the nose swab test came back negative, so that was good at least. So, now we have an inhaler for her, and she's on antibiotics for the ear infections. I really never would have thought she was so sick! I knew she wasn't quite herself, but I didn't suspect the ear infections at all. We are really lucky she is such a happy baby, especially when sick!

*As an aside, we did get to have her weighed, and she's up to 19 lbs 3 oz. Getting big!*

After the doctor's appointment, we came home and I put her down for a nap. I had lots of plans for my 'naptime' time, but they sort of went out the window after the visit to the doctor. So, instead, I put on my running shoes and headed out on the powerlines for a short 3 mile run to clear my head. The powerlines were a mix of hard, packed frozen sand, hore frost, a bit of icy snow, ice, soft sand and mud, meaning it wasn't the fastest run, but it was nice to be out in the sun on the trails on a crisp late November day. It is definitely feeling like winter is just around the corner!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Back to Reality

We arrived back in Boston last night after an uneventful and on-time flight, where Sam made friends with everyone behind us on the plane, smiled and blew kisses at our flight attendant and as a result, got to visit with the pilots in the cockpit before we got off the plane. Many thanks to Irene and Dana for picking us up at the airport! This morning, in between leftover pie for breakfast and Sam taking a nap, I decided to go out for a short run. Ryan's achilles was complaining about all the mileage he had put in this week on pavement, so he did the smart thing and stayed home. But after sitting around all day yesterday and eating so many Thanksgiving leftovers, I really wanted to get out so I put on the warmest clothes I had in my suitcase and did the 3-mile loop from the house. It was 34 degrees out. Brrr. A definite change from my run with Sean on Thanksgiving Day! We're not in NC anymore :-) The leg felt good - hurray! - and that makes me happy. But I'm certainly planning to keep working on loosening things up, and will stick with low mileage for the next few weeks too, just to be safe.

We'll head home tomorrow, where it will be back to reality. No more grandparents to watch Sam. No more pie and other yummy leftovers. No more 60 and 70 degree weather. Ah well. It was really nice to get away for a week - we had a great vacation and it was lots of fun to see everyone! - but I know we'll be happy to be home too, and get back into our routine. And somehow, I think our wardrobe will thank us for getting back to our regular diet :-)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Thanksgiving Photos

As you might suspect, we took waaayyyy too many photos this past week here in North Carolina. So, if you're bored, and want to look through lots of photos of smiling Samantha, here's the link. Enjoy! :-)

Thanksgiving photos

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving! Wishing everyone lots of yummy food, drink and time with family and friends!! Since we're celebrating southern-style this year, we continued the warm weather adventures yesterday after Sam's nap by heading up to the pool in my parent's complex. Sam has never been in a pool, but after Tuesday at the beach, we had an inkling that she might like it! And she did. She had a great old time, splashing around and kicking in the water. Who would have thought it?!

Pool fun

Come on in, the water's fine!

The pool was followed up by a yummy dinner out, with Sam walking around and entertaining everyone. What fun. We got Sam all dressed up, but since the child will not sit still, we didn't get any many good "dress up" photos. Oh well. She did look cute, though :-)

Headed out to dinner

Yes, she is wearing sneakers with her dress. What can I say? That's my girl!

This morning, we lazed around the house as the turkey cooked and got things ready for Thanksgiving dinner. Ryan went out for his long run, and after I put Sam down for her nap, I went out for a short run with my cousin Sean. We ran down the road to the gravel path along the property's edge and back, getting in four very flat miles. Sean wanted to run as few steps on pavement as possible, and I can't say that I blame him. We had fun chatting as we ran along, and burned off a few of the calories at least! Thanksgiving dinner was delicious, and it was nice to be able to spend the day with family. We all came away feeling pleasantly stuffed, so between dinner and pie, we headed up to the playground so that the kids could burn off a little steam after sitting nicely at the dinner table. A great day for sure!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

North Carolina Fun

On Sunday, we flew down to spend the week at my parent's house in North Carolina. It was a long travel day, but Sam was a champ through the whole thing. We drove to Ryan's parents house, where she ran around for a bit, got back in the car to drive to the airport, stuck her in the stroller through check-in and security (Luckily, no body scanner or pat-downs for us! In fact, they have a "family" line, so we didn't have to wait in the long security line! Woo hoo!), and then had her contained to our laps for the 2 hour flight. The final leg of the journey was the 1 3/4 hour drive to my parents from Raleigh. Whew! The only glitch in the whole schebang was that Sam wet through her diaper in-flight, and it made a nice wet spot on Ryan's pants. Since there is no room to change a baby in the plane bathroom, we did a whole diaper and outfit change on our laps. Gotta love being a parent! :-)

It is wonderful to be at my parent's house. The weather has been amazing. It is warm and sunny. And while it is definitely autumn here - the Bradford pears are a brilliant red and orange - the roses are still blooming, and there are pansies in the ground. Guess we're in the south :-)

Monday morning, my dad and Ryan went out to play golf, and I snuck out for a walk. A mile in, I was feeling so good, I thought I'd try running. I ended up running 2.5 miles and then walking the final 0.5 mile home. Felt great! After I got back, we packed up Sam and went over to join the boys for a few holes on the golf course. What fun!

On the course

Sam enjoying the soft grass along the fairway

My cousin Sean, his wife Kris, and their four-year old arrived Monday night, and Tuesday, after a lazy morning, we loaded up our cars and headed to Wrightsville Beach. Sean wanted to try on the ocean, and it really was the perfect day for the beach! Blue skies, a cool breeze, low tide and an empty beach. Perfect. Sam had a blast in the sand and in the water. She just charged right in, unafraid of the cold, the waves or the soft sand beneath her feet. It was so cute!

I love the beach!


Sean on his way into the water

Let's go, Pip!

This morning, Ryan and I left Sam with my parents and headed to Lake Waccamaw to do a bit of reconnaissance on the Gator Trail 50k course. We weren't quite sure of the course, but I think we got pretty close. The course is a 5.2 mile loop run 6 times. The trails wander through the pine forests and along the lake. Misletoe and spanish moss hang from the trees. The trails are a mix of sand and packed dirt. It's flat but not totally. The lake is huge, and there are interesting swampy areas along the shoreline. We had a good run. The leg was tight, but not too bad, and it felt great to get a decent run in, and of course, fun to have the chance to run with Ryan! Hurray for grandparents :-)

Sam has been having a great old time, and we are enjoying a bit of family time and a bit of relaxation. A great vacation so far!



Flora and fauna notes so far:

Lots of bluebirds, mockingbirds, a few red-tailed hawks, lots of turkey vultures, cormorants, and a Kingfisher seen throughout my parent's neighborhood. Also a few deer and a Fox Squirrel. At the beach, we saw a flock of pelicans flying low along the water, as well as a school of dolphin really close to the shore - cool! A few Sanderlings ran along the water's edge, chasing the tide, and a Dowitcher too.

Sanderling along the water's edge

Pelicans flying along the waves

Dowitcher hunting

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


Sam has been taking steps for a while, but only one or two before pitching forward, to the side or to her knees. She's also gotten very good at pulling herself up onto furniture, and then twisting and turning to move in the direction she wants to go. She cruises along the furniture easily. She can balance for a good 30 seconds when standing on her own. She's also moved to just holding onto one of our hands (or even just a finger) when she walks across the room. Still, she hasn't really been walking. But today, when I picked her up from daycare, I stood her up, and she stood, balanced and steady, on her own, and then took 5 steps to me! Woohoo! I'd call that walking! Never have 5 little steps made me so proud :-)

Of course, we'll have to see if we can replicate it over these next few days, but I'd say we're on our way!

A Whole Lotta Nothin'

Another quiet week. No running. A bit of walking. Lots of stretching. Some core strength, sit-ups and push-ups. A nice massage by my friend Shannon on Monday night. Thanks Shannon! Of course, as she was working on my legs, Shannon told me I was really tight. As in everywhere. Lovely, but not totally surprising. Oh well. The massage was great, and I think it did loosen things up a bit, although it wasn't a cure-all (darn!). I'll just have to keep on working at things.

However, we did have a great time on Sunday hosting the 2nd Cathance & Pancakes at our place. We had a big group of Trail Monsters join us for a run and breakfast. I held down the fort while Ryan led everyone on the run, and then Neighbor Kate and I cooked up some mean pancakes :-) Thanks to everyone for bringing extra goodies for the table. It was lots of fun! The funniest thing about the morning was that despite the noise of 18 of us talking and laughing downstairs, Sam slept through the din and took a 2 hour nap! Wow.

After everyone left, I wanted to get out and take advantage of the beautifully warm and sunny afternoon, so we walked over to the playground nearby for a bit.

Swinging with Daddy


On the slide
On Monday, while Sam napped, I took a nice half hour walk along the powerlines, and did my stretches and exercises. I had hoped to walk this morning too, but it is super windy out there and is pouring like crazy. I might have gotten out to run in this weather just for fun, but to walk? Nope. It has to be better out tomorrow, so I'll go out then instead and tromp around in the puddles for a bit!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Oh Shoot!

As Coach Slovenski used to say, "Ooooohhh shoot!" (Those on the xc/track teams can imagine the correct inflection here, as well :-) ) Things did not quite go as planned this morning. I did indeed head out for a run. It was a gorgeous, crisp and sunny morning. But right away, I could tell things were still really tight. I ran a 1/4 mile and then walked the rest of the short loop around Mt. Ararat high school. Not what I had envisioned, but I guess I'm not totally surprised. I did ask a lot of my body last Saturday. A race effort is always a lot to ask and tends to hurt at least a bit, but as I didn't have a lot of training to pull from (I think I put in only 2 weeks over 30 miles in the three months before Stonecat), I was really asking a lot! I just decided I didn't want my legs to stop, and pushed until it was over. Goes to show that mind over matter can work, but now my legs are having their say :-)

So, another week of rest for me. But not total rest. I think getting the blood flowing and the muscles moving will be a good thing, and besides I'll go crazy if I sit around doing nothing for another week, so I'll plan to walk where I had hoped to run. I'll also add back in my core and strengthening exercises, and sit-ups/push-ups, which I slacked on while sick and during this last week. It will be something anyway! I also think I'm going to beg and plead with my friend Shannon to give me a massage this week too.

And just for laughs, here are a few pictures of what I came home to last night:

Mini Plake
Yes, that is a mohawk. On my child. The ladies at daycare must have been bored today!

Rockin' the mohawk.

Nice hair, dude

Sweet do!
Hopefully she does not get used to this hairstyle, as being a minimalist (or just plain lazy) in the hair department, I do not have any hair gel or hairspray in the cabinets :-)

Thursday, November 11, 2010


Running news:

I am getting antsy. No running for 5 days will do that to a person. Or at least me! :-) I will take one more day off then go for a short run on Saturday. I actually think my legs will feel better after a run! A body in motion gets used to that motion. This hanging around with no motion does not feel good! Anyway, my plan is to stick with 3 to 4 runs per week, all low mileage, for the next month or so, just to give the body a little more down time. But after that, I have to get cracking!

Why cracking, you ask? Well, Ryan and I have schemed up a plan to run the Gator Trail 50k down in North Carolina at the end of March. I believe his hope is for a quick 50k. My hope is for a finished 50k :-) The race, which looks to be a pretty small one, is held at Lake Waccamaw State Park, a little over an hour away from my parent's house. The course is six loop on a "flat 5.2 mile loop in Lake Waccamaw State Park. Tree-lined trails and roads. Some trails are primitive." We take this to mean it should be a fast course and that we will find the trails relatively well manicured :-)

I figure a 50k at the end of March will be a good way to keep motivated over the winter, and finishing will get the DNF from Pineland monkey off my back!


Sam stories:

This evening before bedtime, Sam crawled over to her book shelf and proceeded to pull the books off the shelf, one by one. She loves to do this. When she reaches one she wants, she holds it out to me to read to her. Instead of just taking it, saying 'thank you' and starting to read, I've started to say, 'Would you like Mommy to read this book to you, Sam? Ask Mommy to please read the book to you.' And tonight, she signed 'please' when I said that! Awesome!

She is also loving 'high five' and will hold out her hand for you to slap over and over and over. She gets a big kick out of it :-) So cute!

This morning Ryan was holding Sam on his lap at the computer while I was getting ready to take her to daycare. For some reason, he went to youtube and searched for kid songs. This is the first one that came up. Sam was enthralled. I don't really her watching too much TV/videos, but this one was quite cute!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

13 Months

Samantha is now 13 months old. No longer a baby. Definitely a toddler. With one and a half teeth :-) She is learning and doing new things all the time now, and it's hard to keep up! Literally and figuratively. While she is still not walking on her own, Sam cruises easily around the furniture, and regularly pulls herself up to stand by the TV stand, the kitchen chairs or the coffee table. She can stand on her own steadily for a good minute or so, and turn while standing to take a step toward us, but always holds out her hand for us to help her. Not quite ready to do it herself just yet! She can now hold onto the coffee table, etc, and bend down to pick up a dropped toy from the floor, and can also climb all the way up the stairs. Luckily, she is not quite so brazen as to do this without someone right behind her, but I'm sure that will happen soon enough!

She has discovered that she can make her desires known by pointing and doing this adorable "come here" hand movement. If she wants us to read her one of her books, she will pick it up and hold it out to us or drop it in our laps. She loves her books, and we read her favorites over and over and over :-) She also is truly beginning to display an understanding of what we say to her. She will look for Gigi when I ask her "Where's Gigi?," or take a drink from her sippy cup if I ask her to take another sip of milk, etc. She loves to turn off the lights when we leave a room, and delights in dumping out her blocks and then picking them up and putting them back in the box.

She recently started saying "thank you," although it sounds more like "dak u" when you pass her a toy, and regularly says "bye bye," "bow" and her own generalized 'ball/book/toy' word, along with "oooohhh" when something falls or makes a noise. She's not really into animal sounds, but loves to point at the pictures of owls in two of her books, so I'm trying to teach her how to say "Who cooks for you?!" Ha :-)

Of course, it's not all rainbows and candy, as she no longer stays still for diaper changes and squirms all over the place, has realized that she can voice her displeasure dramatically when not getting what she wants, loves to drop food on the floor from her high chair or ooze her milk/water/yogurt out of her mouth and then turn and smile at us, and is currently teething. But, as always, she is cute :-)

In the rocking chair

Stone Cat Results

The results from Stone Cat have finally been posted!

Looks like my official time was really 4:13:37. I came in 35th overall (out of 160), and was the 7th woman. Last year, I think my time would have put me in 3rd, but oh well. Guess too many fast women came out to run this year :-) But no matter, I'm still happy with the result!

Congrats to Valerie for winning her age group!

In other news, it's been a rough few days for us in the Team Snowplug household. A deer ran into Ryan's car on his way home from work on Sunday night. He is OK but the car is now in the shop for a while. Sam was a disaster on Sunday and Monday, which meant none of us got any sleep, especially Sunday night when she was up from 3:00 until 5:00 crying inconsolably. Poor baby. It is so tough to feel like we can do nothing to console her. She was drooling like crazy, wanted nothing to come even close to her mouth, and in general was an unhappy, cranky mess. I am hoping all her remaining teeth are coming in at once. I really do not like this teething stuff! Luckily, I'd already planned to take this week off from running, as I in no way had the energy to do anything other than survive these past few days! Ah well, this too shall pass. Right?! :-)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

2010 Stone Cat Marathon Race Report

Although I had grand hopes for Saturday's marathon, I had no idea if I would be able to make it all happen. I mean, let's face it. It hasn't been the best few months on the training front for me. 18 miles was my longest training run, and there have been a lot of zeros in my training log. Not to mention, I was getting over one of the worst colds I've had in a while. None of this was exactly confidence boosting! Still, I was determined to finish, if nothing else, and to give it my all while I was out there, and hope for the best. And I am happy to say, I actually managed to put together a good race - woohoo! But I'm getting ahead of myself...

The day started out with the alarm going off at 4:00am. Ouch. A 6:15 am start is way too early! Even with a cup of coffee, I didn't quite feel awake. After passing the baby monitor off to Ryan's mom, my dad and I took off into the darkness. As we neared the road I knew we needed to turn down to get to the start, we noticed a police vehicle waving people away. What?! This was not what we needed! Turns out, someone hit a telephone pole near the race start, so at the last minute, they had to set up a detour for all of us crazy runners. Added a bit of excitement (and no doubt, a few headaches for the race director!) to the morning, that's for sure, and caused the race start to be delayed by 15 minutes.

In the gym, we met up with Valerie and Rick, Jamie, Ann and George, and knew that Chuck and Katy, and Neighbor Kate, must be around somewhere. Everyone was a bundle of nerves and excitement, waiting for the race to start, and I changed my outfits at least two times before I decided on my short sleeve Atayne shirt under my TMR singlet, shorts and gloves. It wasn't as cold as they had predicted, but it was damp and raw feeling. I hoped I would warm up quickly once we got running!

Valerie and I ready to run!
As 6:30 neared, we all headed out into the darkness, headlamps and reflective gear glimmering. The marathoners had to do a 1.2 mile loop before heading out to join the 50 milers on the 12.5 mile loop through the woods, so when the race director shouted "Go!," Valerie and I joined the throng as we wound through the fields and around the school. The pace was a bit too much for me, so I backed off a bit. Valerie yelled to see where I was, and I told her I was trying to rein things in a bit. I knew I didn't need to go out at 8:30 pace! She agreed, and so we slowed ever so slightly before heading into the woods. The combination of running with Valerie, running by headlamp, and doing a bit of bobbing and weaving around other runners made the first few miles go by quickly. In fact, we were surprised there wasn't more of a bottleneck on the single track. Of course, soon after thinking that, we ran into the conga line of runners winding through the forest on the switchback singletrack. It was a bit frustrating to be at the mercy of the pack's pace, and due to the darkness, it was difficult to pass safely (without hitting a tree, or tripping over a rock or root) in many spots. However, most of the runners were nice about stepping aside ever so slightly so that we could scoot by, and I think we may have only annoyed a handful :-) Still, it was a relief to step out onto the wide carriage roads and be able to run our own pace!

At one point, the road divided two ponds/swampy areas, and with the recent rain, the road was more like a river. Runners were tiptoeing along the edges of all the puddles, which just seemed silly! So I just plowed right through, with Valerie on my heels, splashing and yelping as we passed at least a dozen other runners. We figured we did Ian proud with that one! But boy, was that water cold! That'll wake you up :-)

Valerie and I ran together for the first 6 or 7 miles, passing right through both aid stations on the first loop. At some point she waved me on and while I had really hoped we could run together for longer, as it was great fun to have a good partner!, I respected that we each had our own race to run. I took off, knowing she probably wouldn't be too far behind. And I was right. At around 9 miles, I had to take an unexpected pitstop, and as I came out of the woods, there was Valerie! We ran together again for a few more yards before I pulled ahead. Somewhere around that point, I passed George, looking strong and running the 50, and we chatted for a few steps before he sent me on my way.

For the rest of the first loop, I ran along enjoying the course. It's a nice mix of single track and wide carriage roads, without too many rocks or roots or big climbs. With all the downed leaves and the rain on Friday, things were a bit slick in spots, but not all that bad. I did take a digger at the 12 mile mark, but was quickly back up and running with no real harm done. I came through the start/finish area in 2:10, and stopped briefly to grab a few more Gus and another bar from my dad, and drop off my headlamp (thanks for the reminder, Rick!).

Rounding the bend at the end of the first lap
I decided not to fill up the bladder in my Nathan pack, as my stomach was still feeling a bit unsettled despite the pit stop, and I wasn't sure how much more HEED I'd be able to get down. I knew this was a risk, but I figured I could always stop at the aid stations if need be. Other than my stomach, I was feeling good. I didn't yet feel tired, and my leg was holding up fine, which was more than I had hoped for.

Loop #2 felt different, in part because it was light and because the crowd was more spread out. Also because  I was now 2 hours into the race and knew that this lap was the one that really counted. I made the conscious decision to pick up the pace when I could, which meant stepping it up on the carriage roads and trying to maintain on the single track. The little bumps that seemed like nothing on the first loop began to feel a bit more mountainous this time around. My stomach wasn't feeling great, but I was still able to stick with my 'every half hour' plan for fuel, and to drink a bit of HEED. I decided not to stop at either aid station, figuring if I did, that I would never get my legs going again. I knew I just needed to keep moving. However, after passing the second aid station (thanks for the cheers Erik!), I did indeed need to stop. Another pit stop! Aie. But it was necessary. The stomach was just not happy. I got back on track as quickly as I could, only to discover that I was now running completely alone. Where was everyone?

Right around mile 18, I finally began to feel a few real twinges in my knee, and so I stopped yet again, to stretch for a bit. This was a good chance to regroup mentally, but I didn't stop for long. Things felt better when I started back up, and I just reminded myself to 'push, push, push,' and keep it up. I did walk in a few spots, but mostly I just ran, even if slowly on the uphills, and I even managed to pick a few people off along the way too. I finally ran out of HEED around mile 22, but by then, my stomach had had enough anyway, so it really was fine :-)

I dug deep for the last few miles and came across the line in 4:13:35. My goal was 4:15 and I had done it. The body had held up for just long enough! Hurray! I was spent, but so psyched. Of course, I think my first words to my dad were "This was such a bad idea." :-)

Headed in to the finish!
A HUGE thanks to my dad for coming up to be my cheerleader and support crew, and for getting up at 0'dark thirty too! And another HUGE thanks to Irene and Dana for watching Sam while I went off to do my crazy running thing :-) Sam had a blast with Grammie and Grampie, and I really appreciate it!

And a big congrats to everyone for some awesome racing! Nice job Valerie, Kate, Ann, George, Jamie and Chuck! Lots of fun to go to a race and have so many friends there racing too. Go Trail Monsters!!

And last, but certainly not least, a big thanks to the GAC for putting on a fun race, and for all the volunteers for helping to make it happen. The course was well marked, intersections well-manned, the aid stations cheery and inviting (I didn't stop, but I did hear lots of awesome comments about all the food available, including bacon!!), and there were great shirts and jackets as finisher prizes. Somehow I think I'll be back :-) (Guess I didn't mean that "This was such a bad idea" comment, did I?!)

So, a very happy end to the 2010 racing season for me. Before I gear up again for 2011, I am planning to take a little break for running, at least for this week and maybe next, to rest up and loosen up my silly left IT band. I'm pretty stiff right now, and my exercise today consisted of a lot of hobbling around :-)

Friday, November 5, 2010


Lots of rain yesterday, and it hasn't stopped yet, although this morning it has been more like a constant light mist. It's the sort of day that makes you want to curl up on the couch with a cup of coffee and a good book. Or perhaps go for a run? :-)

I decided to just take the day off from work so that I could get organized, get a quick run in, pick up my dad at the Portland airport, and get to Ryan's parent's house for Sam's dinnertime. Things are a bit more complicated when there is a 1 year old involved, and I really didn't want to get there too late and mess up the nightime routine too much, so taking the day off seemed the best option. Besides, who doesn't like an extra day off??

After I put Sam down for her morning nap, I headed out for a quick run to get the blood flowing and loosen up the legs. It's pretty dreary out there, with a light mist coming down and low clouds hanging over the powerlines. I decided to just do a 2-mile run out-and-back on the powerlines, which meant that right before the turn-around I had to run through a big puddle. Brrrrrr, that puddle was cold! But it was sort of fun :-) After all, in 9 minutes I was back inside the warm and cozy house!

Now, all my bags are packed, I've gone through my running gear a few times, I've crossed things off multiple lists and Sam is still sleeping. It's nice to have a chance to relax a bit and think about the race tomorrow. I can hardly believe it is here! I feel like I have the potential to have a really solid fast race. My plan is to be conservatively aggressive, if that makes any sense :-), and go out at a slow pace (I actually think the pile-up of runners going into the single track will help in this regard, even if it is bound to be frustrating). Then assuming things feel good, I will pick it up on the second loop and give it all I've got. That being said, I know I  have to respect the distance, especially since I haven't put in a lot of mileage over the past few months, and still have a tight IT band. I'm not trying to make excuses, I'm just trying to be realistic. I am nervous but excited, and am really looking forward to being out on the course with so many of my Trail Monster friends! And to having my dad there to cheer me on! (Ryan's parents and Sam may or may not come over, depending on the weather and her nap schedule.) Ready or not, Stonecat, here I come!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


This morning I had to run out and start up the car so that the windshield would be defrosted by the time I loaded Sam up for daycare. Brrrr. I was undecided about whether I should run or not when I got back home. I am feeling 100% better than I was feeling last Wednesday, but I'm definitely still a bit congested. I really want this cold GONE by Saturday! So the question was: Rest? Or run? Would one or the other be better? Or would it not matter? In the end, the running won out. I headed into the sunshine, my breath puffing out into the crisp, cool air, the hoar frost on the powerlines crunching beneath my feet, the grass shimmering with a thick layer of frost. The three miles may or may not have done much for, or against, my fitness, but they sure did a lot for my mental state! :-) Only one more run left until Stonecat. I am nervous, but am really looking forward to it!

Monday, November 1, 2010


It certainly looked and felt like a November day out there today. Cool and windy, with the berries on the bushes along the powerlines withered, the blueberry bush leaves still a brilliant red, the oak leaves brown against the charcoal sky, the juncos flitting in and out of the brush in the backyard. This morning, I did a few errands around town once Sam went down for her nap, came home, quickly changed into my running clothes and headed out for another short 3-mile run. Only a few more short runs this week, and it is time for Stonecat! Woohoo!

Sam woke up shortly after I returned, and off we went to Frontier for a yummy lunch with Meghan before she headed south. The food was delicious (as usual), the company was grand, the views of the river very nice, and Sam had a blast racing around on the wide wood floors and sitting on the mammoth pumpkin in the entry way :-)

Sam and the pumpkin

On the move