Thursday, June 22, 2017

Mt Washington for the third time! There is magic in that mountain!

Mount Washtington Road Race 2017


The big day, Saturday the 17th of June 2017, the weather wasn't as chilly as we expected, I still packed extra layers and wore a long sleeve and a short sleeve figuring once I broke the tree line the wind would be there and I would need sleeves, the last two times this has been the case.

Nothing was usual about this race.  

Power hike pace started early and wasn't disappointed I did this, I got passed by people, I passed people, the crowd thinned.  I did notice that people with other people had more energy.  Seems about right.  

Interestingly, I was back and forth with #37 Ron Johnston a superior runner to me in all aspects.....  not exactly sure why he was in my pace group, but he crossed the finish (2:31) turned around and walked back down this hill.  Probably some super runner training program! 

After breaking the tree line and the cold wind (or any for that matter) wasn't there it was clear this was going to be a death march.... 

I looked longingly at all the snow still in the ravines in the distance.

To relieve the pain that started in my hip at mile 3 I did a lot of marching backward and then forward to take the pressure off my right hip, that did seem to do the trick!

Taking off my long sleeved shirt at the beginning of the dirt section (mile 5 when it was clear there would be no cooling breeze) resulted in me managing to lose the only pair of sunglasses I have ever liked.  I never did feel much cooler.

Finally hearing the car horns in the distance helped to make me not want to hurl myself off the side of the mountain.

My A goal was to break 2:30 (19:44 or less pace).  My B goal was a 20 minute pace, this would get me about 2:32 I was 20:08 and 2:33.  

Full results here


Mark, Jason, Me, Peter, Ro (in front)
Peter placed first in his Age Group!

I think the best part of the wall was seeing Leslie, stopping to talk, she suggested I may want to finish the race first.  All I had to navigate was the wall, and I was NOT looking forward to that climb.  That's probably the minute I lost, ha ha ha!!

Just after, Steve got some great photos and said he drank all my beer.  I said he was a dead man.  The spectators laughed.  That energized me, only enough to miserably soldier at a 21% grade to the finish. 



I am a class act!
Photo by Steve



Ro cheered me on.  


Photo by Ro before the race, I can't find the one she took I must have really looked bad!!

Mark was there and behind him was Mindy who I was so hoping to meet in person.  Got a little more lively and I was mere steps from the finish line.  (Ro in the background)


Photo by Mark Gravell
My Maternal Grandfather always said do something interesting for the camera.

I couldn't even muster up the energy to RUN across the finish line.  I crossed, grabbed the blanket they were trying to put around me, I totally did not need a blanket, and someone put a medal around my neck.  


Photo by Mindy Randall
Bloated and ready to collapse 


All in all a fun race.  

By the time I got back to the car, saw the illustrious Scott Mason, and chatted a bit with Rachel I was clearly not in a good place and needed to barf, but there was nothing to barf.  I got some Gatorade from teammate Peter and that helped a bit, sat in the car fidgeted a lot and managed to feel less like I was going to die or have the dry heaves.

Finally, we got moving, on the ride down we clicked off the 5,000 ft mark and traffic stopped....  I got out as I was surely going to barf now.  I felt much better. At 4,000 feet  I was hungry,  at 3,000 feet I was hoping Steve really didn't drink all my beer.  

OMG I have no idea what was the problem, the heat, the dehydration the lack of replenishing with salt tabs (I seriously need to remember this from the ultra, that got me through the last 9 miles)... dunno, but it was awful and very upsetting.  Really more upsetting than anything.

We had a turkey dinner from Hart's and socialized until we got kicked out, it was the mini convention, they were going to the top to watch the sunset.

This was really a watershed experience for me, all my self-doubt (ok not ALL but a lot) seemed to vanish as the seconds and minutes and hours passed after I crossed the finish line.  

I can't be exactly sure what rejuvenated my spirit, something certainly did.  From the point of vomiting forward, I've been exceptionally upbeat and disgustingly perky.  

There is magic in that mountain!

Video of the race and the winners, they actually RAN !!!  Mount Washington Video 2017

Sincerely,

Beth, hoping whatever valley she's been lolling about in for far too long is solidly in the past. 

Oh yeah, and 6/17/17 was my and the Imaginary Husbands 17th wedding anniversary.  There has been nothing conventional about our relationship from the moment we met in 1997; it seemed fitting I was barfing my guts out at about the time we exchanged wedding vows 17 years earlier, ha ha!!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Weekly Recap: 6/12/2017 - 6/18/2017

Hopefully most of you followed the stream of consciousness of my blog last week, that happens when so much awesome stuff happens in a short period of time and I don’t make the time to do a proper reflection.

Monday the heatwave was due to start, anything over 70F is a heatwave to me so I spend most of June – August pretty miserable, less miserable if the humidity is lower, miserable none the less, sometimes a little heat rage rears its ugly head and I have to remind myself it’s not about me and move through it.  Ro and I had plans to walk before she taught spin class.  And when Ro and I walk it isn’t a casual lollygagging stroll, it’s a 14 minute pace, a power walk.  Slowing things down can be good in the long run for endurance and I can’t talk and run so well and we have a lot to talk about so we power walk.   I figured I could get my run in after and have a 10K at the end of the day.

I felt pretty warmed up (ha ha) by the time the run started.  It actually went pretty well, I was shocked.  I didn’t feel like cutting it short or walking.  Hmmmmm

Gus went to the Vet and get some dental work done.  Poor guy was born with a bad set of teeth and gums, so the last 4 may or may not have to come out.  In the pre-sedation check, the Vet discovered an irregular heartbeat, a normal thing in Boxers.  It’s not a surprise, it isn’t happy news, it is something we can manage through medication.  She will do some further testing on him to see what is going on inside that big old boxer boy chest of his.

This was our first outing to the beach, he looks so young!!


I took him on a short walk in the heat, yeah, a dog with a ‘heart condition’ he wanted to go.  This is what we do after dog dinner and people dinner; we go for a walk, so we did.

Tuesday is not a running day and it was hotter, I was glad to be in the icy gym for a circuit class, push-ups, weighted squats, burpees, shoulder press, mountain climbers, bicep curls, and triceps timed 3 minutes with a partner, 10 reps of each then your partner goes and you rest, when a minute left to go reduce to 5 reps of each.  It was fun, I got in an extra 5 reps on each, my partner seemed to think that was pretty ok.  I don’t know why it worked out that way, it just did.  Planked, and got a somewhat healthy lunch…


Dave was gone when I got home from work so I went for a bike ride down by the ocean.  That was nice and cool and there was surprisingly little traffic out.  That added more joy into my ride!



A nice icy shower with all the ceiling and box fans going made everything much better until the Imaginary Husband came home and turned off all the fans, “they make me have a sore throat”.  Um AC does that to me…. So I guess we sit and sweat.   Wahhh wahhhh wahhhh.  See, heat rage… it’s a thing.  And yeah, I'm not an easy person to be around ALL the time.

This is how it feels to me above 70....


Wednesday, while a running day was also a NY day, I got on the train with plenty of time to be in NYC before the meeting I was guiding someone through and wouldn’t you know, 90-minute delay because of a suspicious bag hanging off the 138th Street Bridge in the Bronx.  Good grief…  Of course, we need to be careful and everything has to be inspected and properly disposed of.  I was on one of the old train cars, no electrical outlets.  Thankfully I had fully charged my work and my personal phones.  Work was crazy with trying to figure out who was where and where our presenters in NYC or en-route…  I was very thankful that everyone on the train remained calm, this really impressed me.  For certain there was nothing anyone could do when the conductor announced we were stopped for an indefinite amount of time.  People busied themselves with their devices and making other arrangements for whatever needed to be done first thing in the morning.  Truly impressive, I was honestly concerned what could happen with a mass of people in a confined railroad car, I may have regained just a smidgen of hope for society.

http://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/local/Police-Activity-Stops-Metro-North-Traffic-at-138th-Street-428400163.html

Gus got a short walk, he is allowed those, after a discussion on what a short walk meant we decided a mile was short considering he usually does 3.  He has a mass on his heart and went on Thursday for a series of tests to see what they can discover.

I know Thursday isn't a running day, but I didn't run or do much on Wednesday, I ran at lunch, the weather was perfect, I think even my heat and humidity loving friends would agree, no?  Boy oh boy, that felt good, perfect temperature, breeze, humidity.  I should have done a long run!  Didn't have enough time, I was meeting with the current boss, the hopeful future boss, and future teammate, I needed to be timely!

Gus had quite the day, his abdominal ultrasound was 'unremarkable' this translates to if the mass on his heart is a hemangiosarcoma it has not metastasized into his abdominal cavity.  Good news.   He was fitted with a Holter monitor and I picked him up after work and he was glad to see one of his hoomans.  Not so much for the car ride home, though...  For 24 hours we note what he is up to and the techs that read the results from his 24-hour monitor can identify what is going on with his heart.



The leads disconnected and we reconnected the monitor wasn't one had to fix that.  We will see what sort of data this gives the vet....

I had put on new tires on Ruby and was eager to test them out.  We went on a quick 7-mile spin on Friday morning, and while I really wanted to get in a real ride (20 miles) there wasn't really time for that, I should have made the time, I did not.

I left for New Hampshire a little later than I wanted to, but it ended up being fine.  I made it to the hotel to meet up with everyone on time.  Got our bibs, went to dinner, and to sleep to be picked up at 6:30 a.m.  It was nice to take Friday off, and not have to mess around with work.  Nothing much has been going on lately.

Saturday was Mount Washington, I'm going to give that its own post.  It was a watershed race for me, as I'm coming to realize.

Drove home on Sunday met by two lonely dogs, got Gus out for a short stroll and called the week.

Mileage:

Feet:  23
Saddle: 27

It was a very low mileage week, between travel and the race I didn't get much time in the saddle or on my feet.  I'm good with that.




Books:

I am loving "America's First Daughter"  Martha 'Patsy' Jefferson Randolph was a force to be reckoned with!  The book is about Thomas Jefferson in parts, Martha mostly, and of course Sally Hemmings.  It is a romanticized version of history, I'm not fooled, however, I am really appreciating the writing and the narration of Patsy's life as the First Daughter.  Jefferson may have written all men are created equal, he didn't live that sentiment.  Like him or not, he was a founding father.

This is a long one so I'm not sure when I'll be done or what is up next.  I'm thinking Ulysses.  I've never been able to get through that one.  Maybe now is the right time.  I like Joyce's writing.

Knitting:

I wove in the ends on the sweater and haven't started anything or frogged anything.  I need to have a think about this and perhaps finish up some UFOs (UnFinished Objects) sew buttons on baby sweaters, block scarves, that sort of thing...

Definitely, need to find homes for a backlog of baby sweaters.

Sincerely,

Beth, a very impactful week, even with the light mileage!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Weekly Recap: 6/5/2017 - 6/11/2017

One of my NY colleagues is in for the week, YEAH!  She and I share a Midwest background, a good sense of humor, and a love for physical activity.  When Tanya said she was driving in from her home in NY I asked if she was perhaps going to put her bike in her SUV?  She said she was definitely considering it would I like to show her around!  OH YES!!

Managed to not wear myself out over the weekend or I got enough rest, snagged all three points (Jupiter, Avery, and Eastern) and the Strava 10K badge on Monday's lunch run.

When Tanya and I started talking about riding on Monday night the weather was beyond iffy, fortunately, the weather gods smiled on us and we had a two-hour block with no rain, no sun either, but no rain.  I toured her around the beachy cute parts of where I live and we jibber jabbered about everything!   Getting back to the Ocean House where she is staying I had to laugh when the guys wanted to take my bike too.  Nope!  How else was I going to get home?  

That is a pretty swanky place and we agreed to meet up on Thursday after she gets all of the leadership team on their planes, trains, automobiles, and helicopters to go home.  We were talking about what we thought of when we thought of New England and we agreed Avondale was one of the things we thought of but I wanted to also show her Stonington Borough so that will be our next bike ride.  And it is fully approved by her coach.  She is an ironWOman athlete and is competing in Lake Placid in September.  All this coach stuff befuddles me as I wander aimlessly between running and biking.  I’ve given up on trying to become a swimmer and not a non-drowner, or actually being competitive against anyone but myself, and even that is iffy.

Click Monday's ride with Tanya and it will give you the birds eye view of our ride!



A good portion of the leadership team was going to be on-site on Tuesday and it was really great to have the ride with Tanya on Monday so skipping Tuesday strength class wouldn't be a huge deal.   It was your basic "shake and howdy" between the NYC and the CT folks, share a few presentations, some laughs, and food.  Extended tour through our open space, with apparently me leading.  I was not planning on that.  Our General Counsel wanted to know what I thought of the open space, frankly, I love it.  I enjoy the interaction with people all day long, and I am pretty much NOT a people person.  Why would I enjoy that, you ask?  It keeps me engaged in what I am working on in some odd way and energized to do my best.  There is some psychological mumbo jumbo my Imaginary Husband could explain to me and the rest of you, but my eyes glaze over..... blah blah blah...

I'm honestly pretty happy with how the event went, and feel ok with patting myself on the back.  And those who know me well know this is NOT a skill in my wheelhouse.

Totally not within the dress code!!


Got Gus out for a solo walk, I was very happy for the quiet time.  It's tough being an extroverted introvert!

And really, for those who watch Gotham, how many time can Fish Mooney die???  It's getting a little ridiculous.

Back to hills with Ro on Wednesday, we were going to do School St. hill repeats, we didn't.  Honestly, neither of us are trained for the one hill but we will manage, it was nice to catch up with my friend who has been off on an epic retirement trip.  More are planned for the future, and while I'll miss the stability in my routine I'm every so happy to live vicariously through her and her boyfriend as they LIVE the next chapter of their lives, POST retirement!

Both Boyz got a walk and well, Jax had had a hike and the two additional miles weren't so good for his ACL.  We may be looking at surgery...  crap...

Will this week ever end?  I had no idea what day it was or what was in store on my calendar when I walked into work on Thursday.  I did know that I had the afternoon blocked off to take another bike ride with Tanya.  Of course, it was a morning of meetings starting bright and early and I couldn't make the long walk to the cafe for the good (and cheap coffee).

Fun Circuit class 15, 12, 10, 8. 6 reps of Squat Thrusts, Weighted Squats, Bicep curls, Tricep, Weighted Lunges, Chest Press, One Arm Row and for each weight series 2, 2:30, 3, 3:30, 4 minutes of cardio. The look on Mikey's face when he saw me on the treadmill was priceless.  I do NOT do satan's conveyor belt.  I encouraged him to get back to class versus winging core/strength/HIIT, plus it's nice to be able to do more push-ups than he can do.  Which, for the record is one, barely!

I'm keeping up with a minimum of 3 minutes of planking.  I rotate through 1 front, 1 right side, 1 left side.  My left side is still building up the strength to a full minute, I do have to rotate off the left shoulder at increasing intervals and making it up after I get off the right shoulder.  It still is a bit weak from the crash in January.

Click Birds eye view of my ride with Tanya to see our ride.  I'm really loving this Relive stuff!



Friday is always hit and miss.  After a frustrating few hours at work, I took off to clear my head and to go for a run.  I got in 7 miles.  Not too shabby.  The weather was perfect.  I saw Mikey out all alone, he looked so sad.

The run got my attitude adjusted and I managed to stay collected for the balance of the day.  Got Jax and Gus out for a walk and Gus sniffed out $10!  Good boy!

Programmed in the route for the 54-mile endurance ride with the triathletes.

Up and at 'em on Saturday, packed up the bike and all the necessary stuff, helmet, gloves, two water bottles, shoes, Garmin.  We had a few minutes to kill while we waited for the second George to show up so George, Cord, Jake, and Joy took the opportunity to bust my chops about my granny gears.  Ha ha ha.  It set the tone nicely, I guess...  I don't have a tri bike like them.

Once George got there and all set up, they busted his chops for a while and I huffed and puffed up the first hill damning myself for forgetting my inhaler.  I really got nervous that this was going to be the ride where I bailed.  George Ross was really good about insisting this was no drop and about endurance and he picked a challenging course and we all get out of the ride what we want or we'd go on our own.  OK....

This did give me the opportunity to ride on a road I have so wanted to ride but have been nervous about the hills.  They were amazing!  I managed to not lag too far behind AND stay out of my granny gear (I got a 'good girl' from Cord, awwww).

At about mile 20 I heard this amazing blast, like a cannon shot.  It was MY back tire.  Shit.  I do carry a spare tube.  Everyone was more than willing to take care of me, ok.  Then I brought out my hand pump.  The chop busting started again (and not for the last time).  We got it pumped up and I was just certain it wasn't quite right....

So when we stopped about 5 miles later at Ekonk Turkey Farm (hoping they'd open early for ice cream for us, nope) I put some more air in my tire.  And BOOM PSSSS.  Son. Of. A. Bitch.  George looked at me and said, "Not hard enough for you Beth?"  So he busted my chops as he changed the tube and assured me that it was my obsessiveness with numbers causing the problem and showed me how to use a CO2 cartridge while they all busted my chops about my pump.  Sheesh.....  And then when we left I forgot my helmet.  It's not like I didn't bring this all on myself....

I lagged behind for a bit, a little out of nervousness I really made an ass out of myself, and I was really hoping for some ice cream....  pout pout pout.

We regrouped a couple times and stopped for hydration at a store at mile 35, only 20 to go!  I tried, again, to beg off, and no one was hearing any of it.

We all finished up with a small detour cutting off 4 miles due to road construction.

Click here to see The group ride - no sound effects from two blown tubes fly over!




The debate weighed heavily on me to run the Back Road Ramble on Sunday morning.  Did I really want to ensure getting an ill-fitting hat for completing the required races in the series?  Did I really want to run in what was turning out to be a hot day?  Anything over 70 makes me miserable.

I plotted out a short bike ride to the race start, packed up my running clothes and trail shoes and pedaled off.  On the ride over I said, "Self if you are there by 10 you run."  I think I actually managed to go even slower than possible on the minimal hills out to Camp Watchaug, a mere 12 miles away.  I got there and was invigorated by the cool breeze by the pond and enjoyed catching up with Jon, Jonny, Seth, and Mike G.  

Everyone was off for the start of the race and I ventured out of the Camp and made it barely 1/2 mile until BOOM ANOTHER flat tube.  You have got to be kidding me with this.  The MS ride was today and there was a SAG wagon that stopped to assist me.  I said I'm not with the MS crew and they weren't obliged to help me.  They did.  And I got a few more tips, mostly that my tires are very thin too flexible if I don't need tire irons to put them back on.  Yeah, I'm getting that drift.  Got another recommendation for Continentals

Got new tubes and the guys at the bike shop suggested I check my rim strip/ rim tape.  Will do when I get my new tires!  Love all the advice, much appreciated.  The Imaginary Husband added his two cents.  I had a lot of data points to make my decision!  

Knitting;  

As predicted way back in January when I started this sweater I'd finish it up just as the hot weather hit!  The knitting is done, the end weaving, washing, blocking, and button sewing are up next.

Pictures follow, the merino and microfiber blend will definitely bloom and be more smooth and the sweater more structured after I wash and block it.  Seriously pleased with this sweater, even as it is a bit misshapen with yarn ends flapping in the breeze.  (Pictures by the Imaginary Husband)




Not sure what is next on the knitting docket, I have a pair of socks I started in Hatteras and got pretty far along when I finally realized I had two different sized needles, so I need to frog them (rip them out, rip it rip it, ha? ha? knitting humor) anyhoodles I need to TINK (knit backwards?) ok so my knitting humor is getting a little lost on the non-knitters.... sorry...

Books:

Finished:  “Crazy Rich: Power, Scandal, and Tragedy Inside the Johnson & Johnson Dynasty” by Jerry Oppenheimer

Oh boy! If you want a book about the insane antics and lives of the insanely rich, this is a good one to pick up. I don't know when the mental instability started in the Johnson family, however as the generations progressed it definitely reared its ugly head. An entire huge family, inclusive of exes living off a ginormous trust fund from Band Aids.... There are some very sad parts in the book, quite a few Johnson heirs dying tragically at young ages. It's a Page 6 / Tabloid shocker for sure. Do you learn anything? Not much, just shake your head in amazement, all that money, all that power, all that insanity.

Started:  “America’s First Daughter”  Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie

The reviews are mixed of this historical saga, should be interesting to see how it plays out for me.  I am imagining I will enjoy the liberties taken by the authors (or is it authoresses), a true facts and figures historian, based on the reviews, may not be so enthralled.

Mileage:

Feet:  32
Saddle: 125


All in all a pretty good week.  I was happy to get out on the bike 4 times and toughen up the bum, it worked!  I was pretty spent by Sunday and didn't manage a dog walk due partly to the heat and partly to the Imaginary Husband and I going to the movies to see "Some Like It Hot" re-released from 1969 it's a partnership with TMC and Fathom Events, Big Screen Classics.  Next month is Fast Times at Ridgemont High.  "All I need are some tasty waves, a cool buzz, and I'm fine."

Sincerely,

Beth, trying to quietly and miserably wait out the next three months like many people miserably waited out the three months of winter.  

Monday, June 5, 2017

Weekly Recap 5/29/2017 - 6/4/2017

Welcome to the next installment of Beth's mental dump....

This has been a week of mostly rain, but it isn't humid and hot so I'm actually pretty good with that, and not having any bone/joint related injuries I'm struggling with it so I'll call it good.

Can't really think of a rant I'd care to share....

Monday was a holiday, I was spent from the bike rides and was really looking forward to doing nothing on a crappy weather day.  I barely moved, and took the dogs for a walk and still didn't hit my minimum step goal.  Whatever.  Goals, measurements, are pretty arbitrary aren't they? Our personal benchmarks we install on other people's lives?  Or no?




Got the boyz out for a walk and they were happy with that.

Back to work on Tuesday and that is usually miserable after a three day weekend but I rested enough on Monday to actually feel ready to get back at it on Tuesday.  Considering I'm up against a few lawyers for a non-compliance situation and we had our second meeting about the issue, I was glad to not be exhausted.  The thing with lawyers is they don't like to lose, however, they do appreciate when someone has done their homework and has an indefensible position to present to them.  A small victory for me, and one less opportunity to end up on 60 Minutes for them.  When will that threat ever get old?


This was the only picture in my camera roll... my daily plank
boring


I ran, I didn't run on Monday and figured two running days in a row would be ok.  I did two of the three points and called it good.  Not excessively slow or peppy, it felt good.

Back to hills on Wednesday, since I haven't done repeats in, well, months and Mt. Washington is on the 17th and well, I should be up to 10 School St repeats by now.  I did 5 full School St repeats and 5 short sprints and ran back to the office.  Seems that the micro shower hit those running more on the coast than me running more up river?  For sure I am out there longer than the faster runners and they were clearly more rain soaked than I was... ha ha ha


Well, when you eat garbage you feel like garbage - Gus


Gus had a small run in with a bag of thrown away food, where he consumed an unknown something. This made for an uncomfortable Wednesday for him.  He wouldn't eat, even after some Tums.  I managed to prime the pump with a tasty treat or two and get him to eat a few mouthfuls before I took him out on a hike.  I know, I really wouldn't want to go on a hike after feeling crappy all day, but I do know that it would make me feel better.  He was a bit green on the car ride over to the trail and was pretty hesitant on the slippery ledge, but still, I got 1/2 mile out of him before he refused to go any further and then another nearly 1/2 mile. so we got in a mile and a half or thereabouts.  I was pleased and he was eager to eat his dinner and anything else I'd give him when we got home.  He disobeyed bedtime ritual, I let it slide, and he was ready and up and at em for breakfast on Thursday a.m.

His blood work is continually borderline pancreatitis, which is nerve-wracking, limiting the fat in his diet helps greatly and probably he got ahold of some sort of fatty fast food throw away and well that didn't agree with him.  If we can keep his diet free of excessive fat he is good. Gizmo's blood work was always borderline pancreatitis, but rarely did he have an upset tummy, even after eating things like soap or gloves or socks he was OK,  guess only the soap has any notable fat in it...  hard to believe my curmudgeon has been gone just over a year.

Reading through the cookbook, Diesel, Sage, Gizmo all died three years apart 2010, 2013, 2016, I am hoping one of the two current knuckleheads makes it through 2019 at this rate.

Still stuck on this cookbook thing?  I wasn't raised with religion, seriously, I was raised with a strict direct understanding of the golden rule and am from a family with a strong moral compass.  There isn't a family bible, there is a family cookbook.

Thursday is not a running day, I did the circuit training class and it was the beginner one because that fits better in my schedule.  We can amp up what's being done to suit ourselves and others can take it a step back.


This is a good beer....Heidi sent me her wine selfie but not for sharing.  :(


Rachel had competing priorities for the Beer'd Fun Run and had to bail, I know it isn't a running day so this isn't a heartbreak.  I ushered Dave out of the house when I got home, GET OUT OF THE HOUSE, well not quite that blunt, ok yes it was.  I caught up with a bestie in Texas, over drinks...  We were supposed to have a weekend in Asheville, but that seems to have fallen through the cracks, we even found a nice ma and pa kettle cabin up in the woods too.  Maybe in the fall. She is in the process of starting a business and her focus is all over the place.  Totally understandable.  After 17 years as the primary bread winner and putting the spouse through medical school she finally gets to do what she wants and is at a loss.  I suggested "Real Housewives of Frisco, TX" but she wasn't biting. To finally be free of this burden of sole bread and insurance provider, damn girl take the cake and eat it.  We laugh, like either of us could be taken care of, ha ha ha...


Jax had a little run in with a dog  He bashed his head against the other dogs side...
All are fine,  Jax's just had a little bloody nose, nothing serious.
The other dog slipped out a back door and was out having an adventure. 


I felt my early and over indulgence from Thursday on Friday.  My planned 8 over the Gold Star Bridge turned into a 5K power walk with Ro, FINALLY back from her and Mark's epic retirement road trip!!!  Actually a fine change in plans.  I got home to find new trail shoes, I really love my La Sportiva Helios but they aren't padded enough for my wonky right bunion bone.  I found some La Sportiva Wildcats with some decent padding in the foot bed and the stability I need in a shoe.  I took these out for a tour of Burlingame.  I initially intended on the Yellow loop but the Wildlife trails were calling me and I ran them and then at 4 miles headed back to the car.  6 was going to be enough.  The shoes felt great the best my feet have felt in trail shoes yet!!.


Screech or Barn Owl??


Dave and I were going to take the dogs to the field to run.  That turned into a hike after a freak rain storm so we hiked part of Sammy C's with two very unengaged dogs.  Sometimes feeding them first is good sometimes not so good.   We did see two owls chirping at each other.  My pictures didn't turn out.  With the plethora of acorns there are more chipmunks, squirrels, and mice (and unfortunately ticks), this also means there are more owls, they hunt mice.   Gotta take the good with the bad?

I mustered up my courage and joined a group ride on Saturday.  I met up with them at my mile 7 their mile 30.  Figured this would give me a taste of what I was in for with them.  Definitely all competitive athletes with a super fun side.  I dropped my chain a mile in and two of the guys waited up for me and I worked damn hard to catch up with the rest of the group.  They've been riding together for a while and have specific pick-up points, definitely a no drop ride!  I lagged a bit behind but not too far and nothing that made me want to tap out.  Definitely some strong riders I can learn a lot from and get better riding with.  As much as I can I'll join in their Saturday a.m. fun.  And maybe even start at the start!

I rode 30 with them and missed my turn gabbing with one of the John's who wanted 4 more miles then to turn around so he could get an even 50.  I ended up in Wakefield and thought, hmm I'm kinda hungry, ice cream would be good.  They were closed, opened in 30 minutes, no way I was going to wait for 30 minutes so I figured my options to go home and decided on the uber boring US1 heading West into a West wind for ~30 miles.  That sort of sucked but sort of didn't.  It was nice to just grind away and tuck into the drops and talk to myself or sing to myself.  Well until that other biker caught up to me and I was in mid thought gabbing away to myself.  TOTALLY MORTIFIED!!!   I knew I was running out of steam and figured Dave's Coffee shop would be at about mile 50, I damn near pegged that on the nose and got a frozen hot chocolate and a GINORMOUS blueberry muffin and took my time to devour both.  A couple birds were more than happy to help me finish my muffin too!!  My hips were aching from the repetitive motion and my quads were burning.  Exactly where they needed to be, this was a welcome reprieve and a chance to find out how the latest bike shorts were faring with my bum.  Frigging nearly as awesome as that iced hot chocolate!! Finally.  The only thing I don't like are the marks the grippers leave on my thighs... They are thick enough to not need to worry about the legs flapping in the breeze...  But as far as the important parts they were perfect and I am pleased, I have one more pair to try out....   By far my most favorite pair are the men's ones for my LUNGStrong kit...  but they are long...  I'm supposed to get women's so we will see how those work out.  Primal makes our kits...

After that fun, I had a few hours to catch up on doing nothing and getting stared at by two boxers.  I knitted, they finally fell asleep and I watched a movie "The Naked City"  frigging awesome film.

Took the boys out to the field for Sunday activity because Sunday was supposed to be shitty and Dave would be in New Hampshire for Sunday field/pizza/dog dinner/dog crazies time...


My Boyz!


Now everyone is going to think it is Monday when they wake up on Sunday!  HA!!

Crap these get long...

Sunday was up early as Dave was up and out early.  I took advantage of this and went out before 8 a.m. for a bike ride.  Wow, not a lot of people driving but wow a lot of runners and bikers!  Well, the bikers were part of the MS50 ride and after a helpful volunteer tried to wave me into a rest area I said I was just out for a Sunday Spin.  She laughed and then the guy frantically checking for bib numbers was flummoxed, I said I'm not with Y'all and he smiled and waved, looking rather relieved.

All but one of the bikers were friendly and said: "on your left"  of course it was a guy in a black kit on a black bike with a black helmet, one of those death wish people.  Jackass.

It was a nice ride and the second new set of bike shorts were fantastic!  The first sit in the saddle was a little ouch but none after that.  I'm thankful I may have found something that works for me, finally!!  My neighbor, Bob, got a nice chuckle out of the OUCH, he was out walking the dog.  Ha ha ha.  Thanks, Bob, anything to keep you entertained!


Go on inside and fetch me a treat Hooman -- Gus


As Dave was gone, I managed to be very productive.  My mom says it is because I miss him, I say it is because I don't have someone critiquing the way I do things.  Dave stands mute on all of this and was oblivious to the lawn being mowed or any other chores completed.  Best to stand mute.

Knitting:

I made some good progress on the sleeve.  Watching the movie helped a lot.  I had considered doing that for Sunday afternoon but didn't.  I'm fearful to finish because that means the weather will turn to temps about 70 and I will be miserable.

Books:

I finished 1984, seriously this is happening.  We aren't even allowed to have our own thoughts.  A quote in the newspaper from a 17-year-old female ""I can't really say what I want to say, but there's not much I can do about it..."  Pretty much sums it all up for me.  The males will ask her how she wore her hair and that will make it all better, right?

Bullshit.  Complete bullshit.  I'll stop now.  I have to or I'll be up all night seething.

I started "Crazy Rich: Power, Scandal, and Tragedy Inside the Johnson & Johnson Dynasty" by Jerry Oppenheimer.  Crazy totally crazy.  It is a reality yet it isn't my reality so I can lose myself in this nonsense of the uber rich and completely insane. 

Mileage:

Saddle  (85), Ok so I need to hit 100 for biking but the weather has been shitty and I really have to get a better saddle for my shitty weather bike.  My Sunday ride should have been 10 miles longer just to get my legs and hips in biking shape for long distance, it wasn't.  I'm not disappointed or displeased, it is what it is and I have competing priorities, something has to win.

Feet (34), better this week. More actual running miles, even a few on trails!



Sincerely,

Beth, trying to stay positive, and wears her hair in a messy bun, because that is the most important question to ask a female athlete.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Weekly Recap - 5/22/2017 - 5/28/2017 interrupted by a rant....

There was a lot I wanted to say about Tour de Lyme but never did.  I was whipped when we got home and then yard work?  Seriously...    And I read my recap, missed a few errors before I pressed PUBLISH, whoops.

So here goes:


It was a great ride, it isn't easy, for sure.  I loved it, loved it more than the first two times I did it.  Definitely on the list for next year.   I wonder if in the fall it would be easier as I have more miles in the saddle by then? 


But really top of mind is:

Safety:



A couple of the riders had back blinky lights on their bike and their helmet.  I did catch up to one and talked to him for a bit.  As a driver and a rider, I thanked him for his commitment to being seen.  I have a front and a tail light, I have a bit of bright color in my LUNGStrong riding jerseys but should have something additional.  Fortunately, it has been chilly out and I can wear bright orange or pink long sleeves under my jersey and that helps.  I know it makes me crazy to not be able to see people riding, walking, or running on the roads.  When I'm riding, walking, running or driving.  ESPECIALLY driving.  

As Dave and I drove on Town Woods road (to set the scene: narrow windy uphill shady) to the start of the event, there was a biker, in a fully black kit with a black bike and maybe some color on his helmet.  No light, no nothing.  I guess he expected in the very shady road we could see him?  I dunno.  Dave made his usual comments about roadies and I do my best not to react.


Seriously, people, do you want to be a hood ornament?  Do you want to walk straight into me with my ginormous headlamp and flashy red light and light reflective vest when I'm walking 160 lbs of dog in the dark hours?  Do you want to startle me in your black (because it is so slimming) running gear that I nearly hit you because of the surprise of all of a sudden seeing someone appear in my headlights on the side of a windy road on a moonless night?  Do you want to get clipped by a vehicle because you can't be bothered to be seen?  Really this can't be just me.  Who out there has been startled, or surprised by a walker, runner, or biker, blending into the scenery or road colored, and for that matter cars!  OMG turn on your damn headlamps when you drive a road colored car.  Please?  Pretty Please?


Running & Riding Ramblings:

Monday I ran, that was foolish, I was exhausted, Monday is a running day, but after 100 miles on the bike, nothing was happy.  For all my complaining, the short run did help sort things out for me, I am not really great about hydrating while I bike and that has some residual impacts...  I think it was raining, so no dogs got walked, they were miffed, really miffed, like storming out of the room miffed.  They vacillate between behaving like teenage girls and 2-year-olds.



Seriously, You aren't taking either one of us anywhere?
HARUMPH

The weather was decent on Tuesday, or was it?  I really have to get better about making daily notes instead of ranting about not being able to see people.  Got out again, Tuesday's not a running day, I was still not feeling very peppy, got a little further than Monday.  No energy no breath no nothing...  took Gus out to Woody Hill with a new place to park and explore.  It was fun, we saw lots of interesting things and recognized places we had been before.  Eventually, I'll be able to assemble some sort of 3-mile loop for Gus for the warmer months.  He really tuckers out quickly when the temps are about 60.  I pulled plenty of ticks off of us before we got in the car and still had more to deal with when we got home.  Ugh..


The "fort".
Oddly it looks inhabited, we didn't get very close.

Hills were on tap for Wednesday and I'll admit I still really wasn't feeling it, but went and got it done, a little lethargic yet not feeling totally spent.  Saw a friend, her daughter, and their pup out for a lunch time run, that was nice, cheered me up a bit.  And saw them again on their way home!  The hills were good, a little slower than I am capable of, not horrible though.   


Left work a little early to get in a bike ride.  My bum was not at all happy with this so I told it we'd stay off hills, till I got fed up with one of the roads and the nasty chip stone and went on a hilly road I've only ever bombed down, time to go up Collins.  Then I got the bright idea to see how I'd feel after a Chase Hill Gut punch, not too bad, so maybe try that sneaky Potter Hill climb.  I pr'd both of those and I'm feeling pretty happy with myself, even faster than Mikey B... so I've got that going for me.  Oh how cute, that rhymed.



Took both the Boyz out for a stroll after dog dinner and they were far more concerned with what everyone else was doing, channeling Gladys Kravitz between stopping to listen to conversations, running up to peer in windows, staring down everyone.  Sheesh, it was embarrassing until it got more embarrassing when Jax lost his mind over another dog.  When they are bad at the beginning of the walk I forget about it by the end of the walk, when they are bad two blocks from home, it's not as easy to forget.

No running on Thursday, took the HEAT class, Chris had a variety of torture, um exercises, for us, burpees, jumping jacks, flys, crazy ab thing on the step, curls, triceps, another crazy ab thing on the floor, and bicycles seem to be all I remember at the moment.   Met up with Rachel for the Beer'd Running Somewhere Else run.  She's nursing a quad injury and I'm lazy.  So she decided she'd run my pace and maybe walk.  I have no idea if she wanted me to finish the run solo or was OK with me walking with her.  I'm thinking she didn't care.  I was wheezing and huffing and puffing and snotting, a freaking mess for sure.  Her quad felt a little better, but I really do think running minutes a mile slower than you are accustomed to isn't great.  I got home and did nothing.  Sorry, Gus.


If I pout RIGHT in your face will that make you change your mind?

I was up in the air on anything for Friday, it is a running day, and well I didn't run, I wasn't feeling it after Friday afternoon nap I took Gus for a hike in Browning Woods Preserve in South Kingstown, new to both of us.  Frankly, I'm over the allergies and feeling like every breath is thru a bent straw...




So, the white arrow is at about the 6' mark.  The trail marker is another 2 feet on top of that!  This is a trail for giants!  While it is not at all technical, one still needs to look down to not trip on the errant rock or root or dog stopping to sniff something...  It's a nice almost 2-mile loop, most of the side trails are blocked off, so that helps the directionally challenged (me).


After a sound sleep, Saturday seemed full of hope and promise.  I planned on a 50-mile ride and well that didn't happen, I did get out and meandered around for 30 very flat miles at not a very peppy pace.  It was good though.  I've confirmed I  cannot stand the Pearl Izumi cycle shorts, they have teeny tiny micro waffles in the fabric on the chamois that feels like I'm sitting on sharp pointy waffles if I get out of the saddle and sit back down.  I've paired these with different saddles and my ass has been different sizes and chamois cream doesn't help.  I'm done with them.  They are going in the garbage.  This is the third year of this pain I'm done.  Hopefully the new cycle shorts I've purchased are better.  




At some point during the ride, I decided I'd rather be vacuuming, that is bad, folks...  I wrapped it up and headed home fighting the tourist traffic even though I was attempting to avoid it.


Westerly does a nice job with the flags along the main streets and have a wonderful memorial at one of the entrances to the park.  Gus was disappointed there weren't any scraps left over from the food trucks from the art show at the park





Started my planned 55-mile ride on Sunday, remembered that the comments about the route I copied were there was a 'section of dirt road' I figured maybe a mile, well it was 3.  After getting the crap scared out of me by Crutch.  I probably wouldn't have been so sensitive if I hadn't had to deal with an angry driver 2 blocks from home.  Calm down people, and maybe use your blinker?  If I have the faintest clue what you are doing (I've generally repeatedly let you know what I'm doing by pointing my arm in the direction I am going).  I may be willing to continue on with what I am doing.  If not. I'm going to wait for traffic to clear and then I'll cross the street or turn.  I really don't want to end up being smushed by a vehicle and end up in the back of an ambulance.  I also don't want to be screamed at, swore at, and called names, believe me, the majority of bikers fear and respect the automobile and its killing and maiming ability, we don't need to be reminded of your power.


Anyhow, I'm pedaling up Dennison Hill road and this ominous black truck slows down and the man behind the wheel shouts.  I think, oh crap....  and pedal on figuring they'd mind their own business.  Nope, he turned around, I see the truck approaching in my mirror and slow way down so I can bail to the side of the road if this idiot (sorry Crutch) decided he wants to bump into me.  As the driver yells something as he passes I catch sight of the decals on the back window, oh it's a friendly!!  Crutch was out running with some friends and apologized for frightening me.  I said it was ok.  I am still thinking he drives a bright blue truck!!  He advised it was far longer than a mile of dirt....  I appreciated that warning.  It really wasn't THAT bad, just slow because I didn't want to blow a tube or puncture my tire, because well that would suck.  Very beautiful and I did remember running Green Falls with Crutch many years ago!

At the point, I was supposed to turn right (this was after the 3 miles of dirt) I turned left.  Buttonwood Farms ice cream was just a few miles away.  I was at 23 miles, and a good time to stop, I didn't have breakfast and was kind of hungry!



Breakfast of champions!
Salted Caramel Ice Cream - two scoops in a waffle cone

Thought maybe I'd stop at Grey Sail for a pint of beer before I went home.  Mile 40, and Grey Sail's beer garden met me with exhaustion, heck mile 30 I was exhausted the sugar from the ice cream did not kick in as I had hoped.  I decided against the pint and just slogged the last mile home and drank some Gatorade, I was THAT thirsty, sadly beer was not going to be the right answer.   I was exhausted, I haven't felt that kind of exhausted in a long time.  The boyz joined me on the couch and we slept for well over an hour (after a shower and real food for me and a couple treats for the bored boyz).




Dave was riding Case Mountain and brought home pizza, what a nice thing to wake up to!  I snarfed down two huge slices of Chicken Pesto pizza from Plum Tomato, and then we packed up the boyz for a little outing. Time to get back to our standard Sunday (dinner) activity of taking the boyz to the flying field in Exeter.  It is much cooler at the field than where we are, it is up on a bit of a hill and catches a nice breeze, even on a sweltering Sunday in August we need long sleeves.  The boyz can scrub off some energy and enjoy rolling around in the nice cool grass and wading in the pond.  


video

Not sure how the video will turn out!

Books:

"1984" George Orwell - it's happening, folks.  


Next up is "Crazy Rich: Power, Scandal, and Tragedy Inside the Johnson & Johnson Dynasty" by Jerry Oppenheimer


Knitting:


Finished the right sleeve, started the left sleeve!!  Wooo hoo!  Guarantee the day this is done and blocked and the buttons sewed on it will be 110 degrees F.


I'm pleased with how it is turning out; usually I am not a big fan of most sweaters I make for myself.
Jax's toes in the upper part of the picture, he likes to help.

Mileage:

Feet:  30 - while a sad week in running, I needed the break
Saddle: 96 - glad to get another week of serious miles 




Sincerely,
Beth, terrified to get smushed and to smash someone