Sunday, July 30, 2017

Weekend Running

My plan for Moosalamoo next weekend is to use it as a training run/race, so I decided not to go into it with any sort of taper. This meant that this weekend was a full one.

I headed over to Bradbury on Friday morning after dropping Sam off at camp and stopping by the farmer's market to pick up some fresh fruits and veggies. It was a bright, sunny, warm morning with a nice breeze and I headed out onto the BBU west side course.

The run was rather uneventful except for one stretch. Out on the Connector between the powerlines and Lawrence Road, I heard an odd noise and when I looked left, there was a guy out in the middle of the pine trees, with a spray pack on his back. I stopped to say hello and to ask him WTF he was doing?! ;) I asked more nicely, of course, but that was what I was thinking! ;) He indicated he was spraying the invasive oriental bittersweet vines that are taking over this section of forest and attempting to kill off the trees. Huh. Interesting. I went along my merry way and up at the edge of the field, saw another man spraying and then down by the little bridge right before Snowman's aid station, there was a guy clearing out debris from the stream bed. I've never seen so much activity on the Connector before, but it is great that it is getting some attention!

A good 10 miles for the morning and then onto errands, laundry and cleaning for the rest of the day!

Beautiful black-eyed Susans out in the Lawrence Road field

It was lovely out as I headed out around 6:40 am on Saturday morning to run from home. So much nicer than the typical hot muggy days of summer as it was relatively cool and not humid. Yay! Always feels so much better running with good weather! I ran up and over Mt. A, along with holes 3, 4 and 5 before heading off along the Heath Trail. I took the short detour to the bench along the far side of the heath and was rewarded with some lovely high bush blueberries. Delish!

From there I followed the Cathance trails the long way out to Barnes Leap and along the river. There's not a lot of water flowing right now, so the accompanying melody is more of a trickle than the springtime roar, but still nice. Up in the field, there were some ripe raspberries that needed to be picked, and out along the Blueberry Loop, there were indeed blueberries! Needless to say a few stops were made :) I also scared up a group of 8 turkey poults and left the mother in a dither - poor thing - as they all scattered into the trees and she was on the ground clucking and practically spinning in circles. 

Once I looped back through the Cathance, I took the back dirt road down to Tedford Road and back up the powerlines to Highland Green Road. I stopped at the corner to pick more blueberries and found a few blackberries too - yum! - and to ponder my sanity for a few minutes ;) But with 6 miles to go, I sighed and continued on, up and over Mt. A again to run around Highland Green Road and back. I finished up with a loop past the schools on Canam and came in with 16 miles on the dot, a mix of trails and roads on a beautiful morning. 

The rest of the day was spent doing errands before Nate, Shannon, Finely, Charlotte and Annelise came over for dinner. We haven't caught up with them in ages, so it was really nice to have a chance to get together and catch up on all the happenings of the summer so far!

This morning, I met up with Emma down at her place in Falmouth at 6:00 am for a run on the Blackstrap trails. I haven't run out there since 2008, when Jeff put on the first Hell race. Wow! There is an amazing network of trails throughout Falmouth and I was really impressed. We ran a nice hilly out and back for 10 miles total, with some nice views out on the powerlines, good spongy singletrack, twisty turny trails along streams and out through the woods. It was another gorgeous morning - cool, crisp and sunny - and it was fun to catch up with Emma while we ran along. While we weren't running super fast, we were keeping a decent pace given the terrain and there were only a few quick stops to leash the dogs at the road crossing and to take in the view from the powerline overlook on the way out, so it was a solid run. A great way to end the running week, and I am happy to once again have hit just over 50 miles. 

Shortly after I got home, we all headed down to Harpswell to spend the day with Anne, Thistle, Phil and Kristen. Simply gorgeous out there, and the girls had fun exploring the tidal pool at the end of the point and watching the green crabs and hermit crabs crawl around while Phil scared up a small lobster for us to take a look at. Then it was onto the pool for several hours both before and after lunch. A great day with good friends, and a good way to end a fun weekend!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017


Overcast skies on Tuesday morning, so no sunrise as I headed out early on the powerlines, but it was a lovely lollygag nonetheless, complete with stops for blueberries and raspberries and to oh and ah over the multitude of wood lilies rising brightly out of the greenery at the far end of the powerlines. Got rained on in the last 1/2 mile but a good 8 miles start to the day.

Last night, I was awoken by the sound of Gigi attempting to spit up on our bed. That crisis was averted but there was still spit up to deal with, on the floor at least. So there I was, 12:30 am, up in the night, flashlight on the phone on, grabbing the box of wipes, which was empty, knocking over the laundry detergent cap onto the floor in a search for more, cleaning up laundry detergent and then spit up. Ah, gotta love it. Then the cat came and laid on my chest, kneading her paws into me, as if to say, oh I feel so much better now ;) Needless to say the plan to get up extra early and get in 10 miles went out the window as I didn't really get much sleep. Managed to drag myself up and out of bed around 5:00 am and get in 6 miles on the cart paths. A really nice, cool morning, and I amazingly felt decent.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Sunday Morning at the Brad

Sunday morning, I snuck out while Ryan and Sam were still asleep and headed over to Bradbury for my long run. I got started around 6:40 am, and it was lovely to have a morning that wasn't too hot and wasn't too humid. Ahhh! I ran one lap of the BBU course, and enjoyed the quiet woods. The powerlines had been mowed, as had the field stretch, and I stopped for a few handfuls of blueberries as I climbed the hill and took in the view.

After running up and down Lunchbreak and over the summit, I stopped back at the parking lot at mile 10 to change my shirt, which while not soaked was still sweaty, fill up my water and grab some additional gels, before I headed onto the east side for the 5 mile section. I was feeling decent but by the time I got back to the lot, I was also definitely feeling tired. Travel has a way of doing that to you, I've found. In any event, I just *may* have had almost a full bottle of coke before continuing on ;) and that seemed to do the trick.

The rest of the miles were spent on the mountain side, heading up and around the mountain, down and back up Lunchbreak and down and up to the summit again. I ended up with a solid 23 miles and was happy to have gotten in the miles after a busy few days of NC fun and travel. A good way to wrap up another 50 mile week.

After spending the winter and early spring feeling a bit lackluster in my running both mentally and physically, I am happy to be coming back around. The past few months have been pretty good in terms of mileage and in how I have been feeling, and I'm hopeful as I look to the season ahead. I'll be running Moosalamoo 36 miler in a few weeks, and while ideally I'd have gotten in a few more over-20 mile runs, it's most definitely a training race for me, and I'm looking forward to exploring some different trails while I'm out there. The plan after Moosalamoo is to get in some more road miles and hills in prep for VT50 at the end of September, all the while working toward the goal of Pinhoti the first weekend of November. I am super exited about the prospect of another 100, this one a point-to-point on new to me trails in a new to me place, but I'll also readily admit I'm slightly terrified. But a little bit of fear to light the fire in one's belly is a good thing, and I'm looking forward to the challenges ahead!

Saturday, July 22, 2017

NC Fun

Well, in the end, my dad decided to drive up to Charlotte to get me. It was a faster option than waiting around for the plane 😂😂 Dad is a serious trooper and I am so grateful for him coming to get me, along with all the other amazing things he does for our family! I missed 6 hours I was supposed to spend with everyone on Wednesday but at least I made it there!

Thursday morning, I got up and headed out around 5:30 am for a run. It was insanely humid and fairly warm, but there was a little bit of a breeze and at least the sun wasn't bearing down too intensely so early in the morning. I got in a nice 8 miles through the neighborhood, heading out to the River Lodge and taking the "nature trail" back to the roads for a short rail stretch, along which I saw a big beautiful Barred Owl. He flew right over me and then stopped several times along the path to look at me intently before continuing on his way. Very cool! The final few miles of the "loop" include a run along the Berm. I looked for the alligator, but to no avail, although I did see several Great Blue Herons and one Egret.

Who cooks for you?

Such a fun sighting!

Early morning along the berm

After everyone got up for the day and ate some breakfast, we packed up and headed down to Wilmington to Wrightsville Beach, the perfect place to spend a warm July NC day! My cousin Sue met us there, which was really great, and we spent over 3 hours in the water. It was a lot of fun to ride the waves with the girls, but I must admit I was exhausted by the time we left! Luckily, a stop for ice cream at Boombalatti's revived us all 💕🍦

Beach selfie

The girls

The clan!

Fun in the waves (and yes, I'm wearing Dad's much too big sunblock shirt, but hey...)

Where's Morgan?

Fun in the waves

In the rollies

Water fun

Sam and I

Morgan found an amazingly large and intact sand dollar! So cool!

Sue and Kristen


Boombalatti's selfie ;)

The girls

Dad neglected to get himself in on the selfie ;)

There we go!

After getting home and showered up, we all got dressed up and headed to the club for dinner. Yum!

Sammy and I

Sam and Mom's black eyed susans!

Swallowtail loving Mom's flowers

Neenie, Pip and the girls

Lucky kids and grandparents ;)

Gotta take a selfie ;) HA!

Relaxing up at the club

Kristen and Morgan

Sam didn't sleep well on Thursday night, which meant neither did I as we were sharing a bed, so I decided to skip getting up before dawn on Friday and sleep in until she woke up after she finally fell back to sleep the last time around 4:30 am. Turns out, that was until around 8:20 so so much for an early morning run! I decided I would head out anyway, but it wasn't until around 10:00 that I finally got out the door. Oof! Maybe not such a good idea as I was practically melting in the final few miles of my 6 miles around the block and then simply couldn't stop sweating until around an hour later when we went up to the pool and I stood in the water for the rest of the morning. Gotta love the south :)

No photos from the day but it was well spent with two trips to the pool, a bit of relaxation at home and a nice dinner cooked on the grill. So much fun to spend a few days with my parents, sister and the girls! We are incredibly lucky! Thank you, Mom and Dad! We love you 💗💗

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Headed South

Headed south today for a few days with my parents and then on Saturday, Sam and I will head back home. Of course, I was supposed to fly out at 8:00 and be into Wilmington by noon, but the first flight has already been delayed, which means I miss the original connection and now I'm scheduled to get into Wilmington at 7:15. Hurray for 6 hours in the Charlotte airport! Hopefully I can get on seat on one of the mid-afternoon flights by standby but we'll see. Ah, travel...

Slept like a rock on Sunday night and decided a few more hours of sleep on Monday morning would be more beneficial than running so first run since Friday morning was yesterday. Ooof. Definitely feeling a bit tired and out of sorts, but was happy to get out on the trails. It was a misty, foggy, very heavy morning and I ran the 7 mile loop out in the Cathance. Saw two deer, my towhee friend, a broad-winged hawk and stopped to eat blueberries along the powerlines, because one just should not pass up trailside berries on a run :)

This morning, after getting up at 4:00 and finding out about the travel snafu, I suited up and headed out for a few miles, knowing I'd feel better if I got a little exercise before my now all-day travel extravaganza. Another misty, foggy, 100% humidity morning. Ran the cart paths, followed by hordes of deer flies, but did see three Great Blue Heron, so that was cool. A very soggy 6 miles for the day.

Looking forward to seeing the kiddo and spending a few days with my parents, sister, Sam and Morgan! The girls have been having a blast and it will be great to join in on the fun for a few days before coming back home!