It’s June 1 – the New Normal

Let’s start with the temperature this morning: 35 degrees. The morning dog walk at 5 a.m. was COLD. My winter coat was put away. It was a brisk walk.

Today the YMCA opens and I have a reservation for a lane in the pool at 12:15. Yes! I actually like knowing I will have a lane to myself at a particular time. The weight room isn’t open yet but once it is I’ll be happy to reserve a time. 

Also today, I start a triathlon training plan. I’m not exactly sure what I’m training for but I’ll be ready when a race is open. Ironman did announce the rules for their races, yesterday. It looks like Ironman Florida could be an option. Plus they fixed their website urls; they were all wonky. Stuff like that drives me crazy. 

Also today, I will be eating at a restaurant. That will be interesting. It’s the new normal.

Races Canceled So far:

The White Mountain triathlon is canceled and race organizers are allowing registrants to race Lake Sunapee triathlon or defer to next year. It would be fun to swim in Lake Sunapee. However, September 19 is the 50 miler at Gunstock, bummer. So I’ll defer to next year.

August 7 is the Ragged Mountain Stage race. This isn’t canceled yet, but I’m half expecting it to be. I have two months left to train for it and I’ll be ready. It’s okay if it is postponed to next year. 

So much is changing in the world. Here in New Hampshire, in my corner of the world, all seems calm and somewhat normal. I know it’s not, really. Everything that is going on in the big cities, the violence and looting can be stopped with action, writing letters and taking part in conversation. I will do my part. As Anne Lamott says, I’ll pick up trash.


Monday, Training & Racing Update – Week 2

Races:

Rock Hopper Chocorua Race – canceled.

White Mountain TriRagged Mountain Stage RaceIM Mont TremblantGunstock Trailfest – still on!

Training:

Training is going well. I ran every day last week which was big (BIG) for me. It is good to get back into running shape. It’s so easy to lose it. I ran my favorite 10 mile loop from Winant into Swope in Concord with so many hills, rocks and root.

1,428 elevation change!

This is now week 2 of 28.

The big test this week is going longer. I’m excited to have today off and get in a 40 mile week!

Week 1 & 2 – 100 Mile Training Plan

I didn’t get to bike at all last week. The snow, rain and wind prevented that. Plus, my mountain bike was in the shop after the chain broke on my ride last week. I brought it in for a full tune up so it was gone most of the week. I’m excited to road and mountain bike this week; and the weather forecast looks good!

Happy Monday!

A Quarantine Life

I’ve been staying home since March 10. Every day I watch and read the news, work, take care of my dogs and sometimes write. The parts of my life that have really changed since the stay at home order is not seeing my parents once a week, not going to the gym, not meeting friends at restaurants and working from home everyday. While it’s been a disruption it’s not total chaos, yet. I’m not complaining about any of it. I’m choosing to remember the silver lining in it all. I just don’t know what it is yet.

I read stories about people who have the virus and are suffering. I read stories about the people who have lost their jobs. Sometimes these stories paralyze me with sadness and fear. But I’m not going to stop reading and watching the news. We have to pay attention to these stories. We have to know the stories that are being told. We need to know and understand the difference between the truth and the lies. If you pay attention, you will know who is telling the truth. 

Training Update

Sometimes I think about how last year at this time I was in full on Leadville 100 training mode. It was my number one goal and fed every part of my life. I can’t imagine how runners are feeling now that Leadville or their other A races will most likely be canceled this year (I hope it’s not). I’m not on a training plan right now. My next race, the Gunstock Trail Festival has been postponed to September. I have two other races I’m signed up for: 3-Day Stage Race in August and Ironman Mont Tremblant. It’s too early to tell if they will be canceled or postponed. Regardless, whatever happens I’m fine with it. I will race them trained or untrained, if they happen.

For now I’m running and biking everyday. I’m mixing it up with road and trail depending on weather. The weather the last three days have been gorgeous with highs in the 60s so I’ve been riding my tri bike. My endurance is improving a little each day. Since I didn’t bike indoors all winter I’m starting from Square One and it’s okay, I like seeing incremental progress. My hope: this weekend ride 40 miles. 

Goldie-Dog Update

She is a crazy dog. She has gotten out of her collar twice now. She sees a bird or squirrel and just goes nuts. When she pulls on the leash it hurts my back so much so I try to get in front of her to distract her attention. Then, she somehow wiggles around and the collar comes off. Luckily, she stays close and will come into the house, but geez. 

She plays and plays with Winnie, sometimes antagonizing her by just casually walking up to her and biting her ear. It’s funny to watch but I know that sometimes Winnie is just not in the mood. Goldie is so cuddly and just needs to be close to me. I just love her to pieces. 

Book Update

The new book is coming along, slowly. I add a little bit to chapters as I think of sentences and ideas. I’ve been preoccupied with reading the New York Times (I still have two Sunday editions I haven’t finished) and watching Homeland.

Heroes

Houston Marathon 2020

My first race of 2020 is the Houston Marathon. This will be my second time running it with Mark. The first time was 2017 and I was living in Colorado. My training was going poorly due to snow and cold, living at 7,000 feet. I got to the starting line not very fit but we ran together and had a great time. The course is flat and runs through so many neighborhoods; my favorite was Rice University. I’m looking forward to seeing Mark and his friends who are also running. I’ve been watching their mileage on Strava, they will all do well!

When I signed up for Houston I was coming off a great summer running season. I was fit and getting faster. Then, I got injured – struggling to run with adductor and muscle soreness – hobbling for hours after after even a short run.

Now I think I have figured out the problem and have started running again with less soreness, but still it’s not super fun to run. I’m doing all kind of exercises, foam rolling, massage and more weight training.

I’m slowly adding miles running and hiking a lot, so in 44 days I’ll be ready. It’s been more fun hiking lately but I love running and can’t wait to travel to Texas and get out of the snow. It’s always fun to meet Mark and have a racecation.

Houston Marathon 2017
The first Houston Marathon – 2017

Week 8, a big training week done

Happy July 1st. 

The highlight of Week 8: running 70 miles.

In past weeks I hit 68 mile which included hiking but this is a solid 70 mile with just running. 

This is Week 7 and total mileage is 75 and plan to follow the plan exactly meaning two days off and hitting the daily mileage. Last week I improvised some days; specifically running on Monday since I was sick the week before and didn’t need ANOTHER day off. I ran extra miles during the week because I just felt good, and on Saturday I ran 25 instead of 30 because I had a bit of total-mile-wiggle-room.

This week the temperatures were consistently in the 80s and humidity was high. I mainly ran in the morning to avoid it and on weekends tried to start early but gradually just got used to being drenched in sweat. The plus side of the heat is trips to the Merrimack River for Winnie to swim. The trail leading to the beach wasn’t buggy and not a lot of people yet. I didn’t swim yet but I’m sure this week I’ll jump in. 

Merrimack River in Concord

Saturday’s long run was an ass kicker with 2,500 feet in elevation gain. I ran out to Carter Hill and the apple orchard and along the way hit as my hills as I could. 

Coming down the hill from Carter Hill on the West End Trail in Concord. So green, so buggy, so beautiful.

Then came home, got more water and nutrition and headed out on the road to Bow and the big hill on the logging road. I was toast after. On Sunday I woke up sore, took Advil and headed out for a 16 mile run mainly on roads. The first three miles were slow but I was amazed when I got on the trail how good I felt; even felt fast. I knocked out the miles and then recovered the rest of the day which included another trip to the river and dinner on the patio at Cheers. 

And now for a day off! 

Just 7 weeks to Leadville. July is going to fun-filled. Yeah Summer. This coming week a possible Mount Washington ascent. A trip to Colorado to climb Pikes Peak. A trip to Lake Placid for the Sky Race. And finally, the last weekend the Pemi Loop with Bob and his Leadville buddies.