Sunday, January 31, 2016

Weekly Recap: 1/25 - 1/31 - The last month of fish... (final - I didn't realize I published)

Monday – (8.2) Not gonna lie, I’m enjoying running on Monday, seems to get the week started off right.  Plus I was dragging and it woke me up enough to be productive in the afternoon!  I doubt I’m ever going to get back to 5:30 a.m. runs, maybe in the summer, yeah right…  

Monday was Faith’s birthday and a 14 mile run.  I ran 5 of those miles with her at a respectable chatty pace.  She’d already run 9 so had been over many areas already once or twice so I tried to mix it up a bit for her.  She declined on the hill loop.  Imagine that!

Weights were thwarted by required errands, Dave was out on his fat bike riding in the snow and dog dinner time was quickly approaching.  With a geriatric in the mix schedules become uber important, one thing gets off and it dominoes, and not in a good way.  

The dogs got fed and once I’m home I’m home, so I settled in to watch Downton Abbey because I missed it on Sunday night.  This was a bit of a bummer because Faith and I lacked one subject to discuss and I was rather quiet.  Hopefully she didn’t mind too much.  She did mind when at mile 4 I said, “I’m done.”  The silence was palpable!  Not a smart thing to say. Hey, my legs were a little dead from 4 and a half miles in snowshoes trying to keep up with people with legs a half a foot longer than mine the day before. (and really it's all about me, right?)

Gus settled in on the ottoman during Downton Abbey, he is learning.  Staring me down isn’t going to get him to his walk any faster, snuggling up is a better tactic and when whatever’s got my attention ceases to be he can start staring.  He got his walk.  Most of the sidewalks were clear from Saturday’s storm,  a few rentals along our normal route and one house where there is a guy I know who plows snow for his living. Really Rob, you couldn’t shovel your OWN sidewalk???  Gus and I ended up in the street a few times and the drivers were non to happy to allow us even a few feet.  Oh well.

Tuesday – (5) Solo run, forgot my albuterol, and forgot my music too.  Wow my breathing is bad when I forget to dose myself.  Lesson learned.  Everything was tight and creaky.  I was really looking forward to Yoga to get in some much needed stretching and focusing.

Yoga was perfect.  I found myself slacking off and having to concentrate on pushing myself just a little bit to get the full benefit of the poses.  All very well worth it.  I felt like a new person after class!  My concentration did pay off because I won the first round of music BINGO!  And next week is my turn to pick up the tab at the bar.

Wednesday – (8.6) the wind died down and Ro was up for our regular loop, its 3.5 miles for her and 5 for me!  I slogged the first mile and then we picked up the pace pretty decently.  At some point I may get up the gumption to go faster than a 10 pace, but let’s not rush into anything.  I’m back to consistently enjoying running for the first time in a very long time.

Spin class at the Arcadia YMCA.  I can't understand a freaking word that comes out of Kim's mouth, between the RI accent and the horrible acoustics in the room.  She was telling us how the interval class was going to work.  Honestly I thought she kept saying it was a Chibata Interval. It is the Tabata Method!  It was wicked fun, and tough. 4 sets of  8 rounds, one round is 20 second push and 10 second rest.  We did Seated, Standing Sprint, Hover with increasing tension, Seated decreasing the tension.  My mind is blanking at the moment on the series order, I think I'm capturing it correctly. Wrapping up with 2.5 minutes of sprint intervals to flush out the legs from the heavy gears.  I managed to not switch on my space watch so I didn't get my HR data recorded.  The red light was blaring so I'm sure I was working reasonably hard.

Dave decided to argue with me about my 15 miles on the spin bike.  HA.  I should figure a way to measure this....  or just let him be obnoxious (or me be obnoxious).  A little internet research says 15 - 20 miles for a 45 minute spin class.  I'll buy that.  What do you think?  Or is it just unreasonable to count them as bike miles?

Gus got his walk, poor guy goes into panic mode after dinner.  Lots of recycling to smell and he was really enjoying that.  After the walk he tucked himself into his chair and went to sleep.

Thursday -  (7.9) Unexpected lunch run!  Managed a 10K and started using the HR monitor,  I'll start this and then stop at some point.  I'm sure there is something to learn, I'm not sure if I want to learn it?

The best part was when I got back to my desk to see that Mikey had been by to redecorate, we had a fun little IM.  He was stuck in a meeting all day and couldn't run.  Wahhh wahhh... Thursdays aren't a running day for me and usually the best weather of the week.  It was glorious, I should have opted for short sleeves, but then all the people bundled up because it is January, after all, would have thought I was showing off my guns.... ha ha ha....

Weights at the gym, I have to get there twice a week, once isn't going to cut it.  Upped the weights on a couple things by 5 lbs and started a paper log to keep better track and not miss a machine.  I know, I know, free weights are better.  I'll get there. 

Quick walk with Jax.  He is a tough one to walk in the dark, too skittish.

Friday -  (5.1) Had the opportunity to run and I figured 3, down to the beach and back  I wasn't feeling too horrible, for me running 5 days in a row is a lot, could be my longest streak yet!  I hadn't run Jupiter Point lately and I wondered if the elderly lady would be out with her Corgi.  They were!  Yippiee.  And I went the usual route back to campus.  I thought I might mix it up, and avoid the long rise on Shennecossett (or however the heck it is spelled) and opt for the short quick rise on Plant Street.  For some reason Plant seemed more appealing and I know I have to get used to that rise on Shennie, so I went that way.  

Met up with Mikey as he was getting back from his run, chivalry is not dead as he wondered if my hands were cold and offered me his sweaty gloves, I passed... my hands would warm up in a mile or so, they weren't necessary, it was over 40.  Not sunny and no wind, so all was good.

Saturday -  (7.2) Morning walk with Gus, nice to be out in the sun and get in a nice long walk.  I've missed dog walks in the daylight.  The afternoon was the Charlestown Chili 5K - recap here.

Sunday -  (6+)My Kindle battery died so I decided to run, a long streak for me! 7 whole days!  I also broke 30 miles for the week and it has been since November (1st) for me to have a 30 mile week.  

While I ran I enjoyed the sun and contemplated my latest hair brained idea of an ultra.  I haven't landed anywhere, officially, yet. March 1st is d-day so guess that will be when I'll know.  Fortunately I have options as 30 miles and over is an ultra and while the training plan is set up for some crazy idea I can't even vocalize, backing it down 10 miles won't kill me and will leave 2017 open for lots more biking!  And who knows, maybe this will be a cool summer?  I know it sounds like I'm really not hating on summer running, I'll consider it testing my limits?

Gus looked rather depressed most of today, I think he forgot our epic adventure yesterday (he certainly was ticked when we didn't go on our after dinner walk).  Although with as much energy as the ancient crippled Gizmo has (he's wearing me out with all these trips outside to walk the block) maybe keeping the dogs active as their ages advance isn't such a great idea.  (ha ha ha)  Gus and I took a little spin around Westerly's North End and back home.

Dave t00k his tropical fish to their new home.  I started a salt water tank (neighbor Norm gifted me his tank when he left Joe) a few years before I met Dave and he took over my tank plus started a new one when we lived in MI.  It was sad to say good bye to those fish.  I was never very successful with anything but Clown fish.  Far to anemone died at my hands.  Dave on the other had could make things live and flourish.  One anemone multiplied to 7 and we had a few Clown Fish births.  Anyhoodles, I'm not sure how long we were here before he set up a few smaller tanks and had his eye on a 100 gallon tank (I think he wanted a 200 gallon tank).  We've been here nearly 17 years so it could be 15 years?  His capstone project was a 90 gallon corner tank, that has been in the front living room since the year my mother was diagnosed with cancer, so 9 years.   Guess his passion faded over time. It will be nice to see the electricity bill drop by a Grant probably closer to a Benjamin per month.  Not an inexpensive hobby for sure. 

Feet: 191.6 miles against a straight-line target of 170.8
Bike: 45 against a straight-line target of 170.8

Sincerely,
Beth, wondering where all the pictures of the fish and the fish tanks wandered off to... huh...

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Charlestown Chili 5K - Recap

A week from nearly a foot of snow fall and there wasn't much snow on the course or the ground!

Jonny was in charge of measuring the race course and watching his Strava feed of running and re-running and measuring and re-measuring the course was amusing.  I was wondering when a slide rule may make the list of ways to measure the course!  It was great to be able to support the Charlestown Early Learning Center, education at all levels is important to me, and a fellow Westerly Track and Athletic Club (WTAC) member.

Gizmo - not to happy to model the hat from the race!
Jennifer texted me on Friday night wondering what my plans were for the race.  Simple, if I was there by myself I'd run to race if she went I'd run with her and what was her goal.  Her goal was 10:30 pace.  I knew that was a stretch for her, she hasn't been running more than a couple miles on the treadmill every couple days or so and running outside in the winter is painful for her.  I see and feel her frustration trying to balance everything going on in her life.  If she was willing to not walk I was willing to help her the best I could and she could call me every name BUT the see (c) yo(u) (n)ext (t)uesday word and we could remain friends and I wouldn't trip her.



We ended up with a 10:39 pace, and well that is in the 10:30 range so I'm calling it good.  We also walked three times (I thought it was only twice until I looked at the Strava).  She made it nearly 2 miles till we walked the first time, I tried just slowing down a bit but she wasn't having any of it.



Mile 1: 10:16 - yes fast, but I knew what was coming, you don't run with someone for nearly 2 years and not learn a thing or two.

Mile 2: 10:56 - we almost made it through the 2nd mile with no walking.  It was a push and I almost managed, but when you can't breathe you can't breathe.  I reminded her there was a fireman behind us...  We made it nearly two miles, so I knew she was serious.

Mile 3: 10:48 - two short bouts of walking (I'm a pushover, obviously).  All in all a good mile.  We passed a couple people, they passed us back, but hey we passed people.  Jennifer said she was laughing in her head when I'd say "watch her feet and we can close the gap" because she knew I'd take off if she let me!

Mile 0.1: 10:11 - picked it up a bit more to finish pretty strong.

I was happy to see the pace.  I couldn't grasp the math in my head for time.  Yes it is rather simple 10:30 is 30 minutes + 1 minute 30 second plus another minute ish for the last 1/10th of a mile  - to get to 32:33  (we were 33:24 and if we hadn't walked who knows we may have made the exact goal pace).

Sincerely,
Beth,  happy Jennifer agreed to let me help her and we had a successful race!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Three Things Thursday


Another installment of Three Things Thursday.  It's hard to come up with three things...  
 
Quotes:
 
They can be as thought provoking as they are annoying.

This Runner’s World quote fanned a thought that sparked last night when I put together my training plan for my next Ultra.

 


I only remember some of the pain, mostly I remember the joy of accomplishment. 

Plans:

 I was vowing to not run a lot this summer.  Then I put together this plan (it starts June 6th):
 
 

Well shit, that’s all summer and some long runs, when will I bike?  Maybe a fall Ultra isn’t where it’s at?

Reality:


 

Sincerely,
Beth, realizing "It's better to cross the line and suffer the consequences than to just stare at the line for the rest of your life."



Sunday, January 24, 2016

Weekly Recap: 1/18 - 1/24

Monday - Big old ZERO

Faith and I were going to meet up for a run in Watch Hill. Today was a holiday from work for me.  The snow thwarted that idea and Mikey 's Strava post reinforced the decision we made - the roads were icy and not plowed, not to mention the wind gusts off the water.  So good.

-- non-running related --

I got started on my "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" project.  Fist up: clothes, shoes, outerwear, and handbags.    I had to pull out everything from all the corners of the house.  The rules say if you find something after you KonMari then it can't be kept.  I was ruthless.  No joy.  No stay.   (referenced as KMd later) I was amazed at the pile of stuff I started out with and the pile of stuff I was left with and the ginormous donate pile.  The keep was put away (hung, folded, placed).  I am quite pleased with my progress on what is going to be a long project.  And yes, I do feel a bit less stressed when I enter 'my space'.   The key for me was "Does this spark joy?"  Yes - keep.  No - get rid of.  I've never asked myself this question before.  There were so many things I kept because so and so gave this to me or someone made this or even I made this (I have several sweaters I've made that I absolutely hate - and I really need to not make any more sweaters, I never love them, other than the Ganseys, when I'm done with them).

-- kind of running related --

Next weekend spots stuff tops the list.  I already know, even as I've worn them and put them away there are a few race shirts, that don't spark any joy - and they will have to go.  I have the memory of the race, however the shirt, no...  I already went through a rather ridiculous medal collection and kept only those from special races.  Now to figure out what to do with them, seems like such a waste, they mean nothing to me.   As an aside the gray Blessing of the Fleet shirt was one Dave snagged from me a few years ago.  He said "I have one for you, this one chafes the hell out of my nips."  I said "Lemme guess the gray Blessing of the Fleet?"  He wondered how I knew.  I said I run with a bunch of guys who usually have blood running down their chest when they wear that one!   It went in the Goodwill bag.

Tuesday - (5.7) Weather.gov said it was going to be brisk, 24F (feels like 6F with the windchill) gusts of 30 + from the West and plenty of bright sunshine! Glad all I brought were outside running clothesn (really honest and truly) !  Ran into Eric in the fitness center, he was all bundled up ready to take on the elements. I went out and it was fan-freaking-tastic.  I really really enjoyed the run.  Picked a route that would have me blasted from all sides and the last 1/2 mileish, down hill directly West.  It was as if I was standing still on Morse St, and really had to give it some ooomph to get moving at something other than a snails pace.  I laughed out loud at how ridiculous I must look struggling to run down a hill!!

Yoga night!  I was so unfocused.  Renee played classic rock during class.  I found myself wiggling around to the music or singing.  Leonard Skynner's Freebird took me to memories of someone I went to school with.  Ahhh...  This was not a class for me to be settled but to just go with whatever I was feeling, and I did.

Wednesday - (8.0) Double day - of sorts.  Run at lunch, still windy, just not as cold, feels like of 12F, so like a heatwave compared to yesterday.  I ran a similar loop and thought I might hit 7, nope. Fail to plan = plan to fail.  I do need to get my mid week run closer to 7.  All in all a peppy run and it felt really really good.  I so hate the heat and this weather, while a little frustrating to many, really makes for happy running for me.

Spin after work, Jennifer and I meet up at the Arcadia YMCA, for what always ends up being a great class. Tonight was an interesting interval.  When she explains them it sounds like a monotonous hell, however she picks out some good music.

Put the sweater on Gus, oh my he hated it, he was frozen.  Finally I figured out that it touched his tail and that was part of the problem.  Folded it up under it's self and that helped a bit but still he was not his usual energetic walker.  I suppose I could have taken it off him and carried it.  I didn't, we made a bee line to home when it was clear this was not fun for either of us.  Lesson learned.  It was really cold and I didn't want him to be cold, he'd rather NOT wear the sweater.

Thursday  - (3.3) Rest day -  This was painful as the weather was beautiful, and I'm watching all these runs pop up on my Strava feed.  Well, I did have a nice knitting lunch.  Went to the Y for weight work after work.  That felt good.  I upped many of my weights, yes still on the machines, I need a buddy to go with for the free weights - Jennifer keeps getting sucked back into work.  Well, her commissions will be through the roof this week, so yeah, she's buying next week.  HA HA HA!!

Took Gus out on a walk, he gets so ancy right after dinner, constantly checking, now?  now?  how about now?  Usually by 7:30 people dinner is over and it's time for a dog walk.  Now he stresses about being picked or Jax being picked.  So much happier sans the sweater... lesson learned!

Friday - (10.3) I really do love this weather, the sun and the cold make running outside so enjoyable for me.  Sorry if it's not for you. It really is the sun, that is key.  Having grown up where the sun barely pokes it's head out 14 times from Halloween till Valentines Day having it shining so bright in the sky with few to no clouds, OMG heaven.   I dread anything above 50F.  And when it gets past 80F I'm so miserable.  Well I have a few more months of fun running weather ahead of me and I will embrace them.   Nice 7 mile lunch run, went back to the same old same old route as my Strava feeds seemed to be confusing Mikey with me not running on the standard route.  Kinda nice to get back to familiar roads, to be honest.

Nice walk with Gus in the warmer nearly 30F temps of the evening.  I am dreading the snow only for the reason of the lazy people who don't shovel and having to figure out what is going to work for a walking and running route from the house.  Running is easier, I can drive (shudder) somewhere and go for a run.  Gus isn't too big on the car, he tolerates it.  I hate to stress him out.  He's never going to be a calm collected dog, there was far too much damage done to him early in life.  I picked road running and biking because I can do it from my front door.  Rather than packing up and driving somewhere to run or bike.  I do love the trails, I hate the process of driving there.   Purely some sort of mental thing on my part.

Saturday - (11.2) Dave was leaving for his ride at 8 a.m.  He fed the dogs!!!  Whoop!  Always nice to be able to lazy around for a few extra minutes.   Peeked at the weather and what runs others had done before 8 and contemplated what I wanted to do.  A quick trip outside with Gizmo for his around the block trip confirmed I didn't want to go to Watch Hill and run back home into the wind.  Decided I'd head out towards Boombridge and see how far I felt like going.  I really need to start breaking into double digits, it's been since October since I've done a long run.  Ah well, maybe next week.  Fail to plan plan to fail, right?  Honestly I'm enjoying the 5, 6, and 7 mile runs, there may have been a few 8's in there.   I made it to the bridge and took a peek to see if the calves were out, I doubted they would be, and turned around for the 1/2 mile slow up hill and back to town, with the wind mostly at my back.  (guess that counts as planning?? LOL)

Jax got a walk in the falling snow, I was caked with snow, Jax was soaked, he shook off the snow once it piled to high on him!  That was a really fun walk.  He enjoys the snow a lot, when we got home he ran into the back yard to run around in it some more.

I KM'd for a while and got the last of all clothing done.  Next is books...  I do need to do some organizing and I have GOT to find the bowling alley wax to wax some drawers so they slide better.   Wonder where that got stashed? Once the drawers are cleaned of clutter - I have no idea what is in there - I see race bibs peeking out, they can probably be pitched - I can stash some running and biking gear in there!

Gus got a walk after about 9" fell.  We made a mile, that was tough going, he seems happy to have gotten out, snoring all snuggled up in his chair.

Sunday - (4.4) Looks like we got a bit over 10 inches of snow.  Not too bad.  I finished up the shoveling in the a.m. and Dave went out later and cleaned off the vehicles.  I enjoy shoveling snow.  I'm weird, I suppose? Or I'm channeling my father who will spend hours on the tractor moving snow around the farm.  Either way it's a job you can see progress with and the finished product is pretty darn clear!

We went snowshoeing with another couple, that was fun.  I only went snowshoeing twice last winter, so my skills are weak at best.  Yes it is simply walking with big things on your feel.  I managed to put the left shoe on the right foot (then yes the right shoe on the left foot) and this caused me to keep loosening the bindings and having to re-hook them up or re-tighten them.  Lesson learned!   Lots of trees heavy with snow.  It was fun being in front and knocking the snow off and watching the pine tree go WHOOSH and stand nearly straight up!  The hardwoods went straight much faster than the soft woods...   All in all it was a fun 4.5 mile loop we did on a beautiful day in Arcadia.



At 5'7" I was the shortest in the bunch by at least 5"!!!

Front to Back:  Bill, Dace, Me, Dave (my imaginary husband)

Probably an after dinner Gus walk...  no running.  Tomorrow, I'll run with Faith tomorrow!


Foot miles:  140.6 against a goal of 132.2
Bike miles:  30 against a goal of, 132.2 - well we aren't counting quite yet because I don't need to be frustrated


Sincerely,
Beth, Go Pats, DO YOUR JOB!!!

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Weekly Recap 1/11/16 - 1/17/16


Monday - (8.1) Run with Faith!  She is heart rate training which means staying below 140 which means I don't feel like I'm dying when we run together!  We jibber jabbered about happy topics for most of the run.  We were rudely interrupted by Mikey screaming through the middle of us scaring the crap out of us. Faith had a big HR spike (I need to check Strava to see if I can see her HR data).  Then we decided to plot how to get back at him as he sped off turning around to flash a mischievous smile.

BAZINGA!
Weights after work, I'm feeling more comfortable with the moves of the 13 machines I'm using.  I need to add in Dead-lifts and Single Leg and Both Leg Squats.  All in due time.  Going over into the free weight area is a little intimidating, at the moment to even add in the dead-lift and squat let alone free myself of the machines and do these moves with free weights

Order: Leg / Core / Arm 3 sets 8 - 10 reps till fail for all but core Lbs in () Machines: Leg: Leg Press (120); Leg Curl (5); Leg Extension (50); Calf Raises (100); Abductor (70); Adductor (60); Core: Ab (80); Back extension (90); Twist (35) none to fail, discomfort, not failure; Arm: Military Press (40); Chest Press (50); Row (50); Lat Pull (50) I've upped weights a bit, will be interesting to see the progress and if I'm willing to push the Core machines a bit.


Tuesday -  (5.0) Dug in to my gear bag, three different lengths of bottoms, yoga pants, two pair of socks, a couple long sleeve tech shirts, shoes, two yoga tops.  No bra.  I thought I had solved this problem, guess not.  I ran 5 anyhow, slowly, because well a yoga top isn't all that supportive, I ducked around not so populated roads so I could well eliminate some of the stress my poor girls were experiencing.  Perhaps a smart woman would have bailed.  I knew I wouldn't get in a run at all on Thursday (back to NY) and I really wanted to run.

Yoga after work was definitely needed.  I was feeling stiff.  We did a good number of planks and forward folds!

Wednesday - (7.9) Yoga was what the Dr. called for, felt so much better in the morning.  Walking down to the fitness center I said to myslef, if you see Mikey on a treadmill see if he can convince you to stay in.  He wasn't on one.  OK, hmm, did he actually go out??

Wednesdays have been a run with Ro, she texted that she was sorry but with the wind she was bailing plus had some errands to run, I'll chalk it up more to the errands than the weather.  I stayed away from the water with the 15 - 20 mph west wind, right off the water.  Made up an interesting loop and did the hills I usually do at the Thursday Night Sneekers run, which I haven't been to in a while.  Running in the dark and cold, ugh...   By mile 4 I was ready to be done and well, running was going to be the warmer way to get back to campus and get warm!!

All in all not a bad run and much faster than Tuesday properly equipped with a sports bra.

Spin class with Jennifer, good class, one of the best yet.  Lots of intervals and climbing.  My legs are tired.  Jax was the lucky recipient of a walk.  He loses interest after a mile or so, which isn't bad when it is warm and I can catch up on Words With Friends, but not in this 20 with a windchill to I don't know what, I don't want to look.

Thursday - (2.2) A NYC day.  I got out for a walk out to Bryant Park.  The Strava track was pretty funny.  Looks like I was drunk and walking into buildings!  I did go in to a shop to get some lunch but otherwise I didn't run into a person or a building!



Dave took Jax and Gus to the beach so I didn't get the stare down for a walk when I got home after 9 p.m.

Friday - (8.2) While I REALLY wanted to have a Friday afternoon nap, I didn't, I went for a run from the Y so that I would be more likely to do my weight routine.  If I ran from home, well I know the weights wouldn't happen.  And as with the theme for the week I forgot my socks.  Fortunately it isn't too cold out, mid 40's no sun though, so my feet didn't freeze, nor did I get any blisters (yeah me).

Did a similar weight routine, I need to remember my little notebook to write down the lbs.  With the run first I was more forgiving on my legs and a little ruthless on my arms.

On the train yesterday I read "The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up" it's all the rage and I can't believe I bought a book and didn't get an eBook, besides falling for some popular thing, ugh, I'm losing it!!  I am very happy to say, overall it made sense, and I have someone to gift the book to!

She has a bit in there about emptying out your pocketbook every day and then loading it up in the morning so you don't end up lugging around extra stuff. This is a horrifying thought, to then find a place for each item in there and there isn't much in there and I ritually empty it every morning while my computer is booting up and toss any nonsense I'd collected in the last 24 hours.  Honestly, if I need to do this with anything, I need to do this with my gym bag.  I am on a roll with forgetting things because I shove so much just in case stuff in the bag.  I'll start Tuesday with this process.  The bag is empty sans two things I have for "just in case" I will transfer to my desk.  I think the ritual of loading my bag every morning with the gear for the day  Mondays are Run and Weights, Tuesday are Run and Yoga, Wednesday are Run and Spin, Thursday REST DAY!!, Friday Run and Weights.  Versus loading it for a few days and then taking things out because it is over packed, then forgetting to put things back in.  The process of emptying in the evening will be therapeutic the bag should be empty after putting my workout gear in the laundry basket, hanging hats and gloves to dry (unless I leave them at work to gross out the guys or its not seasonally appropriate), and toiletries, all ready to be packed again in the a.m. after I check the weather!

Saturday - (5.7) Friday Nicole texted the group 7:30 a.m. from the Narragansett Beach for 5 or more?  I thought sure!  Then I looked at the forecast.  Looked like it was going to rain till 2.  As weather does in ANY part of the world it changes.  Eventually the forecast started shifting 1, then noon, then 10, then it seemed to land at about 9.  My alarm clock went off, checked my phone, texts, hey can we postpone till 9?  I texted back YES!! and went back to sleep for an hour enjoying some snuggle time with Jax.  

Jenn looked at her phone, noted there were lots of texts, went to the beach for 7:30 and when no one showed she figured that must be what all the texts were about.  She had 13 on her schedule (she is Boston bound!) so went out and figured she'd see us when she saw us.  Such an awesome gal!  Nicole saw her running and when Patti and I arrived we went out to meet Jenn for her last little bit and ran her back to her car asking how much she had left.  She was happy for the company, even though we are slower than her, miles are miles, and we did 5 with her on the hilly part of U.S. 1 in the slowly dying rain.  When we got back to the beach the sun was starting to come out!  Yippieee!!!

Rain didn't stop us on Saturday!
It was a fun run, I really do enjoy running with the Narragansett gals!

Next Saturday is a 5K one of the guys in my running club is organizing,  I will run that, maybe get in some miles with the gals before?  or see if I can convince any of them to venture out to Charlestown and partake in the Charlestown Chili 5K...

Sunday - (4.1) Dave was up and out for a ride by 8, so we were all up getting our day started.  This always messes me up if I don't immediately get into my running gear.  I didn't, so it was hard telling how my day was going to go.  Through the process of deciding when to (read: avoiding) run (I needed less than 5 to meet my weekly goal) I managed to get a lot of nagging chores done, quilts mended, fixing some shoes (Shoe Goo is AMAZING)  I was glad to not have to get rid of the Simple clogs I've had since before I met Dave, the Shoe Goo got the toe box all glued down to the sole.  I'd part with the big bucks to replace them but I really doubt the current version are the same as my north of 20 year old clogs.  The original company was closed and only recently reopened.  Believe me I've been searching to replace these specific clogs for quite some time.  Nothing has been the same.

Took Gus out for a nice long exploration walk in the afternoon.  We were greeted with snow flurries, he seemed to enjoy the walk, mostly.  New things to see and to smell and some of the same old same old.  A guy in a van asked "Is she a pit bull"  I said, "He's a boxer"  The guy said "She is really cute with that brown patch on her eye." Gus gave me a look, um I'm a BOY not a girl.  Sorry...

After years of not being able to find the right for me Yoga class or finding it and then the instructor not teaching anymore, I investigated the studio Michelle has been raving about,  All That Matters  studio on South Kingstown.  I hemmed and hawed, wanting to see what they had and not wanting to because the class style I want is during the day, and guess what, I work, so um it's a no go and yet again I am bummed not being able to find something as close as possible to Becky's Thursday Night classes in Ann Arbor.    They have it, Iyengar style!  And on the weekend and in the evening!  Even a Thursday 7:30 - 9 p.m. class like I used to take with Becky.  Granted it is close to a 40 minute drive.   Stay tuned, I'll get there for a class.  I'll go not expecting Becky's class because I'll only be disappointed, I go in with an open mind and heart.  So funny how even after 16 years of not practicing with her I miss her terribly.

On Foot 2016 goal - 97.7  (93.7 straight line goal), a little ahead!

In Saddle 2016 goal - 15 done, I'll measure against goal once I get into prime riding season, otherwise this is going to get depressing.

Sincerely,
Beth, another week in the books!  Cheers!

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Three Things Thursday

While I'm on the train from NYC to New Haven, CT this will keep me busy!

I write about our (my no one believes he exists husband) three dogs from time to time, so that’s my three things Thursday

They are all Boxer boys and all rescues, each with their own sad story.   Only one of the original three is still with us.

Gizmo the eldest of the original three turned 15 on Christmas.  That is a long time for a boxer to be alive.  His back legs don’t hold his weight anymore and he is not too keen on the wheels we had from when Diesel (rip) needed them recovering from paralysis.  He wasn’t too keen on the back leg leash either, until he realized this was his only method of getting around.  Now he barks to let us know he needs something.  This could be any number of things, he got a leg stuck in the couch and can’t roll to the other side he has to go out (usually accompanied by a greenhouse gas emission), he is bored, he is hungry, Jax is touching him, Gus is standing by him, or who knows.  When you are that old I’m sure it could be anything.



Gus, the poor middle dog, he is 8 and embracing every second of being a middle aged boxer boy, he doesn’t want to play rough with the youngest, and wants to be taught by Gizmo on how to be the old and favorite dog.  He is the one I usually walk, he likes a nice long walk, he stays focused on the task, rarely getting bored or misbehaving, limiting his sniffing to reasonable amounts of time.  Not much of a cuddler however he mostly enjoys getting his neck scratched and will sit for hours and let you do this. 





Jax, the baby, he is 5 and showing no signs of slowing down.  He enjoys body checking Gus to get him to play which is usually met with a disgruntled Gus leaving the room. When he body checks Dave or I he is met with “Taking out my knees is not a good idea.” Jax gets bored with walks, as they progress he spends more time smelling, he’d prefer a trip to the beach to run around like the wild child he is.  Of course, a good wrestle on a lazy weekend morning is never out of the question.


Sincerely,

Beth, sharing a little snippet into the dogs

Friday, January 8, 2016

Weekly Log - 1/4 - 1/10 (final)

Jeff asked a couple good questions, in his comment on my 2015 wrap and 2016 goals post.

"Why Indianapolis?  Why Delaware?"

Indianapolis for a full marathon, the short answer is someone else wants to run there to support their running buddy.  The rest of the story:  I don't have a running buddy, maybe some lacking maternal instinct?  maybe I’m a selfish bitch?  Yeah, neither are true, it wasn’t something I ever considered.  Jennifer’s running buddy is Riley an 8 year old girl with multiple heart conditions and half a heart.  She lives near Indianapolis.  Jennifer decided on Mill Race Marathon  in Columbus IN.  This is close to Riley, Jennifer said Riley was so excited by the prospect of meeting Jennifer; it is hard to say no.   Jennifer’s goal is a sub 5.  I’m good with that; it would be a PR for me.  The course looks interesting and pretty flat.  Always happy to venture back to the Midwest!  And hey, then I'll have two states down on doing a Marathon in all 50 states - HA!  Totally NOT my thing!

Delaware, back up a minute, it’s the Delaware Water Gap 50K, which isn’t in Delaware, the Delaware Water Gap is in PA and it is the section of the Delaware River dividing PA and NJ in the Appalachian Mountains (glad I’m not the only one with geographical issues).  This is one of the many sights I see on my trips back and forth to MI.  It is a beautiful part of the drive on I-80.   Why this one?  It is point to point and looks beautiful.  How's that for tri-state confusion?

And so my week:  

Monday  - Rory needed to switch knitting days from Monday to something other than Monday or Friday.  I picked Thursday, figuring that after a run and spin on Wednesday I’d enjoy a break.  Out into the cold for a run on Monday was required.   I forgot either knickers or tights, so shorts it was.  Ran in to some Electric Boat runner buddies who told me I was nuts and under dressed (I snarked that they used to be dirty old men, what happened?) and turned left towards campus to chase them, instead of out and around Avery Point to get 5 in.  It was the right decision to short my run a mile.   My quads were burning from the cold.  I was kind of looking forward to and dreading a hot shower to warm up.

As luck would have it, there was limited hot water in the locker room, yippee (?) a brisk shower.  Back at my desk I bundled up in the shawl/blanket I keep in my filing cabinet, but still my quads weren’t getting past room temperature, it is chilly in my area!!

Getting home from the gym (since TRX is over as Joy got a new job further away) off to the gym to pump iron (Ok Cybex I know free weights are better - don't trust a red head with heavy throwable objects), I was met with Gus and his stare down.  I bundled up and debated putting the dog sweater on him or not.  I opted not to and probably should have.  He was cold and about 2 miles in did everything he could do to steer us towards home and hurry up the walk.  No stopping to sniff he marched forward and gave me a ‘aw hell no’ look when I went to turn down a street away from the direction home.  Well alrighty then.  

Tuesday – made up for the lost mile on Monday in tights!  It was delightful, no really it was.  The shower was warmer, but I was also not as cold, so not really sure if anything got fixed.

Quite possibly it is the beginning of the year gym explosion. The showers were once again tepid.  One of the regular gals in the locker room and I chatted back and forth, we noted the increased people, decreased locker space, and hoped that at least some would stick with it because we’ve all been there.  

I was looking forward to Yoga to work out the last tight spots and close off all the nagging bits and bobs of thoughts rambling around in my mind.    Chris was in rare form at Fat Belly’s and was right there saying “The usual ladies?”  And we said, remember no glasses with lipstick!  The first night he was tending bar it was the 4th glass of  wine  (another reason I drink beer, cleaner glasses) till one was lipstick free.  We enjoyed busting his chops and he looks forwards to Tuesdays (or at least that’s how we play it out in our minds).

Angie won the first round of  music BINGO!  

Wednesday – The weather warmed up and knickers!  I probably could have managed shorts, but was a little gun shy after Monday.  Ran up to Ro’s house, picked her up, we did our 3.5 mile loop and I meandered my run to get at least a mile (to get to 5) in before I went back to campus.  During my run I contemplated upping the minimum to 6, probably a good idea considering the thoughts going through my head of an ultra in the fall.

No spin, we didn’t get bikes and our names weren’t up on the list.  Jennifer’s been put on the task at calling at 5 a.m. because she is actually up that early and I am not getting to it until 8 a.m. (call the day ahead for the 5:15 p.m. class – that’s how it works) .  With the increase in gym attendance, this happens; it will all work itself out.  We need to petition for more bikes for the branch of the Y we go to.    I contemplated going to the early Westerly class, and pushed that out of my mind, knowing I had errands and a Gus walk to fit in before bed time and besides I’m not a huge fan of that instructor.

Thursday – Rest day / knitting with Rory.  Of course the weather was perfect for short and a long sleeve, no hat or gloves.  Bummer, it happens.  I passed on the Gus walk, he will eventually forgive me.  Feels nice to be a complete slug for the day.  My FitBit didn't even hit 10,000 steps.  Ended my longest running streak of 2016 - 5 days!  In reality that is a lot of days in a row for me. 

Signed up for the Pan Mass Challenge - Sturbridge start 192 miles baby!  $4,500 fundraising goal.  YIKES!!  

Friday – Jennifer maybe was going to be able to meet me for weights at 3 at the Westerly Y.  It was iffy and getting iffier.  Work gets in the way of fun, I wish I had the life my husband leads...  anyhoodles...  I wasn't sure if the loop I picked out was going to be 5 or not, it was!  Whoop.  It was a tough run for me, even with a complete day of rest yesterday... maybe complete rest is a no no?  It was a nice run, back to shorts, definitely could have left the gloves, but I put them on so I had to carry them.

The machine weight area was hopping, not too bad, but definitely more people than usual on a Friday afternoon.  I've added in a few more arm and leg machines, yes, I know free weights are better.  Bottom line - I'm doing weights consistently.

Dog walks will happen this evening, Gus is very upset with me for no walk last night.  Poor guy...  He's got a lot on his plate for a dog...

Saturday - "Volunteering at Kelly's Pace Frostbite 5 Miler. My buddy Faith asked me if I'd volunteer and I said sure.  Probably some course monitoring and then we will sweep the course after the race.   I'm good with that.  I have enough t-shirts so I don't need to run the race and it is part of a three race series, where I will miss the 3rd race as it falls on the same weekend of the Pan Mass Challenge."

What happened:  I did volunteer, at mile 1 and 4 the course is a lollipop. I was there with Tony a Stonington Police Officer.  After someone barely stopped at the stop sign, with a cop standing RIGHT THERE he commented "These aren't suggestions."  I said "Ah the Detroit Roll.  Did you know that in Detroit the ones with white borders are optional?"  He looked at me quizzically and said "Where in Michigan are you from?"  this launched into a discussion about where I work and he also works there too!  The cop thing is mostly traffic and part time.  Tony had lots of stories about people getting frustrated that they can't get to where they are going.  "Driving is a privilege not a right." was how he ended that conversation, he is correct, it is a privilege.

The extra large coffee did a number on my stomach I begged off my run with Faith.  I went home and took a nap with Gizmo, I needed the nap I guess.  Took till after my run in the late afternoon to flush the last of the nastiness that much coffee does to my insides.  My own personal Poop Monster, as it were.

Nice run on my own, meandering here and there.  I had thought about my 10 mile loop however I had no headlamp and it would be dark in an hour and 10 miles will take me close to two hours.  Why risk it so I stuck to sidewalks and sought out a bit of elevation, I'm about 40% done with the Strava 1,000 meter climbing challenge.  Prompted me to think about not avoiding the small rises around here.  It will only benefit me in the long run, right?

Today marks the day when a treasured friend, colleague, and mentor would have turned 49.  Dave was an interesting character and always there with a shoulder or a foot, which ever the situation called for sympathy or a swift kick in the ass telling me to 'suck it up'.  He and his motorcycle were plowed over by an impatient driver.  Very sad, and truly a loss.  He was 31.

Sunday - "The weather is supposed to be crappy but warm, not really sure what will happen.  I have a Sherlock Holmes or two to watch... " 

What happened:  After spending the majority of the day with poor timing, the rain was quiet while I was shopping and horrendous while I was driving, I fretted about running, maybe go to the Y and go on the treadmill.  It didn't happen.  I did chores around the house and played with the dogs.

On Foot 2016 goal - 56.5 done against 55.1, a little ahead with the help of a dog walk.

In Saddle 2016 goal - 0 done

I'm seriously thinking this may not happen... then I'm seriously thinking shut up...

Sincerely,
Beth, off to a decent start

Monday, January 4, 2016

Resolution Beach and Trail 5K - Recap

Resolution Beach and Trail 5K, the second in the South County 4th Season Race Series series by Off Rhode Racing.

My Past Results:

2012  31:59
2013  registered / DNS showed up an hour late!
2014  32:48
2015  28:29
2016  31:47

Full results here

My third best time out of 4 races, not too bad.  I'm sure the course was short for 2015, or it could have been the speed work I was actually doing at the time?

Sub 30 is my standing goal for 5Ks anything lower is gravy.  I'm happy with that.  I can sight-see a little at that pace, and breathe, I like to breathe and not to cough up a lung which is pretty standard of late with the mookus.

I'll work on sub 29 for 2016, perhaps.

This is a favorite race, low key, not a lot of hoopla.  Kinda like a big giant group run with the fast folks in the front and the rest of us tagging along hoping to get dragged along!



Mile 1 is on the beach, in to the wind out and then wind at your back, the latter was nice, the former, not so much.  Kinda like running at my parents house but no beach and no other people, well the milk truck, but um, that's more scary than comforting to see one of them coming at you down a dirt road.... I got passed A LOT.  9:57

Mile 2 the last bit of beach, all beat up from the people ahead of me, some sandy trail, a bit of hard top and then stone crushed trail.  I passed two people.  10:25

Mile 3 back into the wind for stone crushed trail, a bit of mud, (a slight down hill and I mean slight, and the sun in my eyes, and I nearly took a digger!!) through the stone house, over a small bit of water, then back on the beach for 1/2 mile till the finish.  I passed two people. 10:19

Scott Mason was catching people as they left the stone house, he missed me sort of as he was re-positioning, probably tired waiting for all the stragglers?  I like the shots he took and as always, purchase.  He's a talented photographer!


Well this was composed, I was tumbling off the tiny rock ledge I was sure
it would be a picture with my arms all over the place!!
Credit:  Scott Mason Photography

Mile 1/10 beach I was counting backwards from 1,000, it works to get my mind off the discomfort and the wind and the sand - I sucked sand out of my teeth for the rest of the day - gotta keep my mouth closed!!  10:10

Photo Credit:  Jana Walker
I'm totally counting and gritting my teeth!
And yes, I always look like I'm standing still, I'm running, really!!

The taller girl behind me came up to me after the race and thanked me for helping her.  She said she kept the back of my jersey in her sights the whole race and hung on.  That really made me smile! Glad to help someone out!!   Fortunately I can see her bib number and hopefully will remember her name, if I see her again.

Sincerely,
Beth, who ran through the water and the mud and didn't care her feet were soaked, that is the FUN of running off road, right?

Credit:  Scott Mason Photography
I really like this one.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Weekly Log 1/1/16 - 1/3/16 (partial week)

I'll wrap up 2015 in a different post - I wanted to start the year off fresh with a partial week. I dunno why.  I just did...

It's my blog!

Friday 1/1 - Stairs were on the agenda.  11 a.m. seemed so late.  It wasn't because Dave decided we'd go to his friends house for NYE and I tagged along, the only runner among 5 mountain bikers.  My road riding didn't really count much to them...  Geeezzzeeee   John, Haley, Jason, Kim, Dave, and I.  Nice small gathering, calorie laden food complete with pizza and beer and probably the 5th time John and Haley had watched Ted 2. It really was HYSTERICAL!

I was running a little late to get out to URI, fortunately so were both Jennifers!   We had a surprise, a new person for stairs.  Chris.  His goal is a 5K in three months.  We got him all hooked up with Couch to 5K and are figuring a race we all can run.  The poor guy was a little overwhelmed and thrilled to have not just Jennifer B but two other people totally he only met today on board with his plan.  Chris made 1 and 1/ 2 trips up the stairs at Mead Stadium, then decided he would walk the 1/4 mile stone path around the stadium.  One step at a time!

I wasn't hungry for dinner so I took Gus for a walk instead.  Being up so late really zombiefied me... Started tracking the walks on Strava.  I've been using MapMyWalk, I'd rather have all this in one place, I think...  Fortunately Walks don't count as Runs so my mileage will stay pretty true.

Saturday 1/2 - Meandering run, probably won't run on Rte 3 again, but I was curious how it would be, I enjoy running through Westerly's north end, kind of like a place time forgot.

Dave and I watched Star Wars, very good.  I, being nearly illiterate when it comes to pop culture had no idea there are going to be two more movies.  I'm kinda sad about that.  I loved the way it ended.  Oh well.

Gus and I went out on our evening constitutional, he started staring me down immediately after dog dinner.  With in 10 minutes of getting back he is sacked out in front of the fire.  What a life these dogs have.

Sunday 1/3 - In addition to my Father's 73rd birthday it was the second race in the 4th Season Trail race series. Resolution Beach and Trail 5K.  I had a big course PR last year, not so much this year, I did run through the mud and water and nearly lost my footing on a slight downhill, that was pretty cool!

Recap to follow.  31:47 official time (and it matches my watch).  2nd fastest time on the course, I'm pleased.

Run: 10.6
Walk: 9.7
Remaining:  1,995.7

Bike: 0
Remaining 2016

Other: didn't drink a lot of beer?  the mookus is finally clearing up, only a few snot rockets and loogies!

Sincerely,
Beth, off to a decent start on the year

Friday, January 1, 2016

2015 is a Wrap!

Not really thrilled with the number of sentence starting with I... not really sure how to reconstruct them and not lessen the impact.

From my January 1, 2015 post  I had two goals:  sub 2 hour 1/2 and 1 or 2 centuries and the Pan Mass Challenge.

Did I sub 2 a 1/2? No, no I didn't.  Did I put in the work to do this?  No, no I didn't.  Did I beat myself about the head and neck?  No, no I didn't.  My last 1/2 of the year was very reflective.

Did I ride the PMC and 1 or 2 Centuries, Yes, yes I did.  I considered a third century the first week in October, the weather was horrid, why torture myself?

Races:  213 (based on my race recaps - I could count my bibs, but that sounds about right)
1/2/16 Editors note:  I counted bibs, I missed two race recaps JP Morgan Corporate Challenge and RISPFP
I focused in on what I wanted to do and learned to have fun running the race, I still have some more learning to do.

5K - 10
10K - 2
1/2 Marathons - 3
5 milers - 2
5.5 miler - 1
10 miler - 1
12 miler - 1 (DNF)
20K - 1 (DNF)
7.6 Miler - 1
8 Miler - 1

I earned 2 DNF, the first took me many months to fully get over, the second, I'm still working through.  I will tackle those races again.

I learned I need to find the fun in running and that means helping someone else to their goal (takes the pressure off me? - not sure of the psychology behind this).

Rides:  2 centuries, 186 miles of PMC, 57 mile leg of the Old Glory Relay, and a memorable 87 mile ride of hills.

I learned that my recovery time from the centuries is longer than I think it is going to be and I really need to ride into work regularly.

Miles:  3247, run, walk, bike

Eeking by 2014 totals with the assistance of spin classes,  I kinda feel like I didn't quite earn them, and during class I KNOW I earned them.

And from my FitBit:





















Fascinating!  These are the steps I take, exercise and general existing!


2016 Goals:

Biking: PMC, starting out of Sturbridge MA - the full 192 miles, 2 or 3 Century rides - TBD I'm over TFCE, and I'd like to to Mt. Washington again but it is the week before the PMC and I don't know if that is going to give me enough recovery time.  I have to do some research and make some decisions before the end of January.  2,016 miles on the bike, it MAY be doable with one or two spin classes a week and commuting into work on the bike in the summer.

Running: Full Marathon - targeting the Indianapolis Marathon in September.  Possibly at 50K in the fall - I'd love to run the Delaware Water Gap 50K.

Stretch goal:

2,016 walking + running miles:   This is a HUGE stretch goal for me.  2015 I achieved 1,679 miles between running and walking.  Will I make it?  I'm not sure.  Will I try?  Yes.  I've set up  my training log to keep track of the running and the walking miles and what I need to hit each week to achieve it. It is essentially 12 walking miles per week and 27 running miles for 52 weeks.

All these miles put me at 4,036 miles for the year, about 800 more than I'm trending.  That means about 80 more hours on the bike and about 130 more hours running through the year.  It will be interesting so see how committed I am.

Sincerely
Beth, older and wiser?