Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Looking Back: 2019

One of my goals every year is to enjoy the journey, relish the process, appreciate the little things. I write it down in my running journal, but it goes beyond running. Because after all, the journey, the process, that is where the magic - and the work - happens. It's often hard to remember that in the moment, or at least it is for me. Life, our actions, what works out, what doesn't, isn't always perfect and it never will be. So while I can't say 2019 was perfect, or that I have it all figured out, I can say that 2019 was pretty magical and filled with many little moments, and a few big ones (!!), that were pretty amazing, and for that I am grateful.

On the overall life front, 2019 included two once-in-a-lifetime family adventures - Disney in May and Squaw in June. I got to run - and finish! 💯 - Western States (yes, this falls into both the life and running categories)! Ryan started a new job that he truly enjoys, and he gets to work from home now, which is amazing in a whole lot of ways. We have one pretty cool 10 year old kiddo. Ryan and I celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary. We spent time with family and friends and as much time as we could outside together. There was a lot of joy, and some tears too, but there can't be one without the other, and I wouldn't trade what I have for all the money in the world, although I'd gladly accept some extra. 😉

On the running front, it's hard to say 2019 wasn't a success because, duh, I got to run - and finish! 💯 - Western States! One of my biggest goals for the year - and my running lifetime! Every ultrarunner's dream, and yes, it was pretty damn awesome and so incredibly worth it. A whole lot of miles, energy and work led up to that race, including the most miles I've ever run in a six month period - over 1,225 miles by the time WSer was done. Once the race was over and we were back to reality, it was hard to believe it had happened. I mean, Western States is the race you see in movies. To have run it seemed like a dream.

I got back to running soon after, but let's be honest, the rest of the year could never compare, and I spent a long time refilling the emotional well I had dipped into leading up to and during Western States. I didn't do any racing in the final six months of the year, and while I was still pushing to meet one of my other running goals for the season, hitting 2,000 miles, I didn't have the same fire. And that is OK. You can't burn on high all the time. Instead, I meandered and enjoyed and just ran because it's part of who I am and what I do and I don't feel complete without it. Finally got in a 20-miler in mid-December, six months later, and then spent the last two weeks of the year climbing back out from a stomach bug. Not quite how I was hoping to finish up the year, but it is what it is.

About 10 inches of snow had fallen by the time I headed out this morning for the final run of 2019. A messy, snowy run meandering through the neighborhood to finish up the year with 2,116 miles. (6.0 miles)

Proud of the consistency I've been able to bring to running over the 5 years, and fun to look back and see I ran 1,000 more miles this year than I did the first year of this decade. It seems like ~2,000 is a good number for me, allowing for adequate rest - I only ever run 5x a week and always take a week to two weeks off after big events - but still a decent amount of volume. Looking forward to more miles, smiles, adventures and continuing the consistency in 2020!

Happy New Year everyone!

Running Log Files:

2019 - 2,116.00
2018 - 2,112.00
2017 - 2,002.00
2016 - 1,900.00
2015 - 1,963.60
2014 - 1,702.00
2013 - 1,557.75
2012 - 1,400.00
2011 - 1,375.00
2010 - 1,100.00
2009 - 675.50 *pregnant/Sam born
2008 - 1,112.00

Monday, December 30, 2019

Christmas #2!

Headed out for a few miles on Saturday morning before we headed south for Christmas #2. Pretty morning but with an interesting layer of thick frost/thin veneer of ice on all paved surfaces. Ran Highland Green and Canam cautiously. (6.0 miles)

Then it was off to MA for time with family. The kids had fun putting a letter together for Santa and we enjoyed dinner out at Agave and the Zoo Lights and Brick Safari at Stone Zoo in the evening. Definitely more ghetto than Gardens Aglow 😉 but still cool. 

Then it was on to Christmas! I was the first to wake up on Sunday morning and enjoyed a quiet morning drinking coffee by light of the Christmas tree before the chaos ensued 😂

And the stocking were lined up on the floor in chronological order of oldest to youngest 😆

Washi tape mummy! 👽

Jelly bean choosing is serious business!

I snuck out late in the morning for a run out through the marshes in the sunshine. It was very pleasant out, and a nice respite to the noise! 😁😉 Even better, felt great! Yay! (7.5 miles)

Finished up the day with a yummy dinner and big slices of chocolate cream and ghetto jello pie. Yum! 😋

Merry Christmas!! 🎄🎅 (and be sure to zoom in on Cam 😆😆)

The snow and rain and ice started overnight and since it looked like it just wasn't going to matter when we left, we headed out around 11:30. Well, it might not have mattered, but it sure wasn't pretty! Ugh. Probably the worst conditions I can remember us driving through in a long time. Definitely not a good driving day. Took forever. 😱 Thankful to get home in one piece and looking forward to a few quiet days before getting back to reality on Thursday!

Friday, December 27, 2019

Taking A Deep Breath

A few quieter days in between Christmas #1 and Christmas #2...

Up Thursday morning and out for a run on the roads around Highland Green and Canam. Stomach was definitely feeling a bit off still from whatever hit me on Saturday and all the Christmas cheer from the day before, so just took it nice and easy. (6.0 miles)

Later in the morning, we dropped Mom and Dad at the airport for their trip to Texas to see Kristen, Rob and Morgan, and then the three of us went home and collapsed on the couch 😂😴 Thankfully we had already planned a late afternoon excursion, or I think we would have all just remained comatose for the rest of the day 😉 We met up with the McDostie clan at Bolos for an afternoon of bowling and snacks, with a visit to Gelato Fiasco for the girls to top it all off. It was the perfect way to unwind after a busy few holiday days and we all had a blast bowling and laughing and chatting together. Oh, and I think the kids ate about 6 bowls of chips too 😂

Everyone slept in on Friday morning. It was cold and icy out with the promise of rain on the way and I wasn't feeling super motivated to get out and run, so I spent some time getting things done, like paying bills, dropping the recycling off at the dump and hitting the grocery store for a few items. Then I came home and procrastinated a bit more 😜 before I finally headed out into the cold rain. Wore my screwshoes and hit the cart paths. Conditions were sketchy to say the least, and even screwshoes don't do much on wet ice, so it wasn't the fastest run but despite that, I felt more like myself, for which I am grateful. (6.0 miles)

Back home for some cleaning, pumpkin bread baking and game playing before we get packed up and ready to head south tomorrow morning for Christmas #2!

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Merry and Bright 🎄🎅

All sorts of Christmas fun the past few days 💕🎄🎅

From lobster trap trees and cookie making...

Maine Christmas tree 🎄

Making spritz cookies with Neenie

to Gardens Aglow at the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens on Monday night... Truly a beautiful night for it and magical as always! (1.8 miles walked)

Glorious sunset

Sunsets and lights. magical 😍

Feeling much better but my stomach is still a bit out of whack. Still, couldn't resist getting out on Tuesday morning for a run out in the Cathance. The ice formations along the river were so pretty! Just sort of meandered along and enjoyed the views. (6.0 miles)

The rest of the day was spent cooking and cleaning, and opening a few Christmas eve presents.

All ready for Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

Woke up before the rest of the household on Christmas morning and enjoyed the quiet.

Our mischevious elf 😹😻

Started off with stockings, truly the best part of Christmas!

The perfect stocking stuffers 😍

Then it was onto the presents...


Llama unicorn onesie! What more could one want?! 

And the traditional photos in front of the Christmas tree 🎄🎅

The rest of the clan came over mid-afternoon to enjoy food and drinks, laughter and cheer. Our house may be small, but I love having it filled with family! Always fun!

Making decorations for the top of the biaritz cake with Dave and Sarah

💗 Merry Christmas all! 💗