First time riding Bear Brook

Do you ever just know you’re going to love something and avoid it because you know that it may take over your life?

Well, this happens to me a lot because I love trying new things and having new experiences.

So, there is this happy place called Bear Brook. I’ve been hearing that the mountain biking is awesome. I’ve been avoiding going there for two years because I knew I would love it. It’s just easier and less time consuming to ride from my house to the Concord trails. It’s so much work packing up my bike and gear to drive to a trailhead.

But, the trails at Bear Brook are AWESOME and totally worth the effort to get there. I’m addicted and will be going as much as I can. Talk about FLOWY. I’m grown accustomed to so many rocks and roots and elevation gain in Concord. The loop around Bear Brook was fun and adventurous; and VERY mosquito-y tonight. I’m not usually one for so many caps in a blog post, but there you have it. What a great ride.

I’m ready for more trails and exploring outside of Concord for bike trails. Despite everything: I’m ready for Summer 2020. 

Well. So. But. Life Is Good. You just need to get on the trails.

Suddenly Summer

It happens every year.

One minute you are sitting in your house freezing and wearing long tights on a morning run.

The next minute you can’t stay cool in your house and are sweating bullets in shorts on a morning run.

Today, on a hot, muggy morning I ran 8 miles on roads and trails. While the temperature on weather.com reported 70 degrees and humidity at 67% it felt higher and I was melting. Ugh. I seriously don’t know how I lived in Tucson for three years. 

I just looked at the details of my Strava and it states that the temperature was 63 and humidity 88%. That sounds a little more correct than weather.com

Either way. Hot and muggy with full sun exposure. I liked the route though: through the quarry trails and over to Winant to run an interesting 8 mile loop before starting work. 

I’m going to try and get away for a short bike ride at lunch time since the weather is so nice; nice bike weather means not windy and rainy. The high today will be 80. I hope to follow the training plan this week and maybe get a 4,000 footer in on the weekend. 

This morning I read a Twitter post about the death of David Clark. I read some posts about his passing last week but only his name was mentioned and I didn’t know who he was; at that time there were few details. I found the story today from Rich Roll who gave a tribute to him and I was instantly drawn into Clark’s story. 

His story is about how an obese alcoholic who loved fast food found a new life in running. And not just running – ultra running some of the hardest races. As someone who struggles with so some of the same things I wanted to know more about his story and bought his book, Broken Open. I’ll let you know what I think once I pick it up from Gibsons.

Weekend Recap Bike, Run, Hike

“that New Hampshire bluff, that promontory of a state … will longest haunt our dreams” Thoreau on Monadnock in 1844 (pictured above)

Such a fun weekend:

Mount Monadnock May 24, 2020
Mount Cardigan Summit – May 25, 2020
Mountain Biking in Concord on new trails
Road biking around Concord 

I had great outdoor adventures with friends but alas running didn’t go so well [sigh]. Starting again today with 8 miles. It’s warm this morning: 55 degrees after waking up to low 40s for the last few days. It’s officially running in shorts in the morning weather – I hope from now on. 

After hiking and mountain biking I really feel like mountain biking helps my hiking. I think it will help my running however my run on Saturday was not so great. I felt tired and my legs felt like lead. It will be interesting to see what my run this morning is like. My ankle is close to totally healed but it’s still a bit swollen and it is achy sometimes while running on uneven surfaces. 

Week 7 Plan

I’m looking forward to this week of running and biking. The weather forecast shows some warm days coming up. Summer is almost here. Time to get back on track, hike some 4,000 footers and explore the world (well, locally until travel restrictions are loosened).

One year ago today, I finished my first 50 miler at Pineland. While I didn’t know it at the time that would be my best finish and last ultra race I finished in 2019. It was seriously, one of my best days ever. Thanks, again, to my BFF Mark Nash for pacing me and having the race of my life.

Pineland 50 mile finish line.

Heading into the Holiday Weekend

It’s Friday and I just got back from a short hike with the dogs in Winant Park. We saw the usual players: trail runner, people with dogs, people without dogs. Despite hiking earlier and earlier I still seem to see more every day. It’s all good. Goldie is coming on command and I can get her on a leash at the end of the hike which I couldn’t do a week ago. Winnie is getting older and grumpier so at the last half of the hike she is on leash. 

It’s been a good week so far. I’ve run all the mileage I am supposed to according to the 100 mile training plan.

Today is an off day in preparation for tomorrow’s 18 miler. I finally feel like I’m back on track and feeling strong while running.

The holiday weekend is turning out to be a busy one, plus the weather is going to be fantastic. Hiking Monadnock on Sunday, which I haven’t hiked in over 30 years. Hiking Ragged on Monday, which will be hard – the mountain is tough! And running and mountain biking with friends the rest of the days. 

I have been thinking about my goal of running 100 miles in 2020. It more and more looks like it’s going to be a self-supported 100 mile run in October. I’m thinking 5 10-mile out and back routes to my house. I’ve been scouting out runs which is making my longer runs more interesting and keeping my mind occupied. 

Here’s what I’m thinking for the self-supported 100:
10 miles out to Bow and back 
10 miles out to Oak Hill (East Concord) and back 
10 miles out to Boscawan and back 
10 miles out to Hopkinton and back 

Which leaves one more out and back left to figure out. And most importantly which legs to do at night from a safety perspective. 

Fun, Fun. 

Have a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend, friends. 

Goldie says hi friends! I’m cute.

Training & Racing Update Week 5

This last week was good. Hiking, Running, Biking.

Although the training plan had me on a recovery week so low-ish mileage was good. 

I didn’t bike as much as I did last week since it was so windy but did get 40 miles in. My ankle is about 90% – it’s still sore – but after a recover day today, Monday, I hope to hit my mileage numbers this week and get some decent bike miles in, as well. 

Things seem to be returning a little bit back to normal. Restaurants open outdoor seating today. Stores are open, sort of. The YMCA is still closed and I’m eager to see what being in the weight room will look like when they do open. Also, I wonder what swimming will look like. 

I still haven’t heard from upcoming races such as the White Mountain Triathlon and Ragged Mountain Stage race. 

My neighborhood

The trees and grass are finally green. Spring has arrived in Concord. Week 5 is looking promising to get my miles in and keep the momentum going as we head into the strangest Memorial Day weekend ever. I hope to do some hiking somewhat close to home, perhaps Ragged Mountain and / or Kearsarge. I’ll wait to head north to the White Mountains after the holiday. 

Still working from home….I don’t want to go back to office life.