Monday Motivation, First Tracks in the Snow

Here in Concord we got about 6 inches of snow this morning. The roads around my house are plowed so I head to the Winant Trails with my dog and snowshoes.

Winant Park, Concord NH

The photo above shows how gorgeous it was this morning. Not a soul out yet. I could hear snowplows in the distance but other than that it was peaceful.

Last night I came very close to signing up for an Ironman and had thoughts of signing up for the Leadville Camp/Run combo. Very dangerous. But instead I walked to the store and bought a pint of Ben & Jerry’s – Peanut Butter Cup.

I woke up with a sugar handover and still undecided about what races to do.

I’m signed up for the Houston Marathon and Umstead but am too injured to run. Okay, not much for Monday Motivation except for starting the day with a great snowshoe hike in the woods with my dog.

My 49th Year

The photo above was taken on the morning of November 14 on one of my typical hikes in Concord: Marjory Swope Park.

While I usually have yearly goals and give updates on them as part of my posts, I’m going to change it up. I’m starting a new timeline for my 49th year. I’m going to set goals for 11/14/2019 to 11/13/202. I have 365 days before my 50th birthday and I’m going to make my 49th year the best ever – live my best life – as so many people like to say. For me, I need to set goals and have a plan or I will sit on my soft and binge watch Netflix shows all day. 

What is new this year from my typical athletic-related goals is reading a book every week. As of right now I have eight books on my table, all in various stages of being read or not read (but wanting to read). 

Last month my friend Jeff invited me to a book club he has been going to. The book they were reading was A Gentleman in Moscow. I haven’t been part of a book club in years so I looked up the book and it sounded pretty good. I started reading it and loved every sentence. However, on November 14, the day of the meeting, I only finished half of it. I wanted to talk about it with other people who read it, though, because, seriously, it was so good. I don’t mind spoilers because I like knowing what’s going to happen (same with Game of Thrones, I watched the final episode before finishing season 5). The book club met at To Share brewery in Manchester. The brewery is in an old garage, well lit and the beer was fantastic. I’ve been into New England IPAs lately. 

I met some awesome men and women who love to read and were so animated about the book: everyone loved it. 

I can’t wait for the next meeting. We are reading The Girl With the Pearl Earring

My other goal is to hike all 48 4,000 footers in my 49th year. I just finished them this year after starting them in 1988 and I want to hike them all in one year. I think it’s possible.

Then, of course, to actually finish a 100 mile race. I’m signed up for Umstead. Training right now is not going well. It’s taking a while to get used to running outside when it’s 30 degrees.

My 49th year will be about reaching goals and having the best life ever.

One week away from The Day

Here’s to one week away from the thing I’ve been wanting to do for 5 years.

Let’s just see if dreams come true.

Let’s just see if 2019 is MY year. The year that everything great happens.

So far – 2019 has not disappointed me. So far – it’s been pretty amazing.

Week 4 recap, Run the Pemi Loop

Week 4 was pretty good until it wasn’t. Ha. That is fun to write. Kind of. Not really.

Every day this week was great until the fiasco that was Sunday. The week started with a Tuesday-Wednesday-Friday run schedule. It should have been Tuesday-Wednesday-Thursday and then maybe Saturday would’ve been a little different; but should’ve, could’ves will kill you. 

Saturday was the Pemi Loop with a wake up call at 2:30am. At the Lincoln Woods trailhead at 4:30 to meet Bob, Mark and Jen. We are all running Leadville 100 in a few weeks. We started with headlamps on the Osseo Trail and then about 45 minute in could turn them off.

Up over Flume, Liberty, Haystack, Lincoln, Lafayette, Garfield, South Twin, Bond and Bondcliff.

Stole this picture from Mark’s Facebook page. Franconia Ridge heading to Lafayette.

The best part was the Franconia Ridge and the Bonds. Beautiful, above treeline hiking and running.

Heading to Bond – my favorite part!

The hardest part was the doom and gloom of the Garfield Ridge and the .8 mile climb up South Twin. 

It was a hot day and I did a lot of things wrong: not enough water, no electrolytes, not enough food – all contributing to the fiasco that was Sunday. 

I woke up with low energy and super low heart rate, which scared me. I really wanted to rally and have a great day with a run in the morning to start. But nope. Couldn’t do it. At 5:00 pm I finally got out of bed and got in a swim with Winnie and ate a good meal. Today, Monday, still sore but energy seems to be restored. 

I’m not sure I could do the Pemi Loop solo. It was so fun to talk and laugh with people. There were about 10 runners we encountered that were doing the clockwise Pemi Loop. It’s pretty popular. I think now, two days later, I might do this again. Maybe in the fall. 

Now it’s time for Week 3 and to have a good almost-taper week.

Pikes Peak, Week 6

I hiked my first 14er in Colorado this week. Woo Hoo. It was great training but I was also pretty dizzy once I reach 13,000 feet. Talk about zombie.

The view from the Barr Trail on Pikes Peak

I tried to keep up with Roger from the start of the trailhead and lost him 30 minutes in. I made friends at mile 5 with Jim from Colorado Springs. He’s training for Rabbit Run 100. It was a good day of meeting new friends and hiking with old ones (not old people, ha).

The hike was arranged by Whitney and Kathleen and included many people from Grand County. The dinner before was fantastic and I asked Roger if he would pace me the first, hardest section of Leadville. He’s thinking about it. Once I get his okay, then all the planning will be just about finalized.

But let’s talk about Week 6

Monday – Recovery Day
Tuesday – Breakthrough trail run – 10 miles.
Wednesday – Off (I wasn’t feeling it. Didn’t bike either. An off training day)
Thursday – 5 miles
Friday – Travel to Colorado, Running at 5,500 in Littleton 4.5
Saturday – Running at 5,500 in Littleton, 3.5, walking around Colorado Springs, CO
Sunday – Pikes Peak and 2 extra miles at the end 26 miles
Total Miles: 49.1

It was a good week. However, from talking to runners training for the 100 mile run in Leadville, I’m feeling a little behind. I haven’t done hill repeats and I’m not doing speed work. I haven’t run much at night and I haven’t done loops on Kearsarge like I promised myself.

I have some work to do. I have 3 big training weeks coming up and 2 weeks of recovery. Hiking Pikes Peak really made me question my ability to finish Leadville. Although I felt good this morning after the Pikes Peak hike/run and ran 10 miles today. I just have to do the hard training days, do the weights and core work and just freaking do the hill repeats.

My problem is that I don’t enjoy the workouts. I just want to run and hike and explore. I want to see new places and push the limits of what I think I can do. Stupid hill repeats. I’m going to do them. I will.

Hills, I will destroy hills.