async="src="/ Taking the Long Way Home: July 2016

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Time For To Play

Wouldn't it be nice if we could always be on vacation?

After a short jaunt to the north woods last weekend, it was back to work with Becky and back to work for reals. Another trip to the ER with Matthew, this time for anaphylaxis. Scared and shaken, but he's ok.

All of which threatened to shake my resolve to stay positive. And that's all I'm going to say about that. Instead, I'm going to focus on our fun, active getaway. 

And just keep on running...


The title of this post is a lyric from a Jimmy Buffett song, The Weather is Here, Wish You Were Beautiful

Friday, July 29, 2016

Runfessions for July

It's that time again...time to runfess! This monthly clearing of the conscience feels so good! Marcia makes it all happen and there's no penance. So come on in and share your deepest, darkest runfessions!


I refer to my early morning pool running sessions as a geriatric happy hour. Usually, I am the youngest person there. Mostly there are the pool noodle ladies and elderly men in speedos. Which shouldn't even be a thing, IMHO. But wait...hello!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Hot Wheeling: Venus de Miles Ride Recap

Another fun Venus de Miles Illinois event is in the books!

I participated in the 25-mile ride last year and was so happy with my experience that this year I applied to be an ambassador. The Venus de Miles ride benefits the Greenhouse Scholars, which is an organization dedicated to providing "personal and financial support to high-performing, under-resourced college students". This is a great organization and I was thrilled to be a part of it again this year! I summed up the mission of the ride in a blog post earlier this summer. Today's post is the recap of this year's event. There is also a ride coming up later this summer in Colorado.


My sister lives less than a mile from the start of the Illinois ride. Since she was riding with me this year I met her at her house.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Loving...and Not Loving

This week ended on loving a spontaneous road trip to my parents' place in Northern Wisconsin! I have some time off work this week. While I planned on a staycation to get things done at home aka declutter, the lure of cooler temperatures and serenity were too hard to pass up. I'm hoping to avoid a repeat of my foot injury. I promise not to drink wine and go kayaking.

While I'm not loving the clutter, it can wait for a rainy/snowy day. It's summer and the living is easy...



Friday, July 22, 2016

5 Reasons to Love Running in the Heat

Hot enough for you? Everyone is talking about this summer's heat. Mother Nature has turned on the blast furnace in regions of the US that are usually more temperate. The media are out in force, reporting on the heat and giving advice. I'm sure there will be the requisite attempts to fry an egg on the sidewalk, bake cookies on the car dashboard, and videos of kids opening hydrants in the city.

Instead of complaining about the summer heat, I invite you to embrace the warmth. Because 6 months from now, we will be heading into the depths of winter.


If you are looking for advice on how to run in the heat, this is not that post.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

A Runner's Gotta Do...

I came home from work Monday and told my husband I was "this close" to a nervous breakdown.

Life 1, Wendy 0.

How do non-runners deal with stress?

I'm pretty sure I have some ideas about that. All of them tempting. None of them healthy.



I've been dealing with this latest flare of PF by taking time off the road. This latest break has lasted 3 weeks. I did run that 10k a few weeks ago, but other than that, I've behaved myself.

Normally when I take time off from running for injury, I'm ok. But this go round? I'm struggling. Probably because this injury has lasted so long. On Monday, I hit critical mass.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Becoming Unstuck

I've been putting on a brave front these last couple of weeks but I'm finally going to put it out there: this foot issue has gotten me down. I try to keep things positive here on the blog. I'm afraid if I write about feeling blue, it will only exacerbate those feelings. Plus who wants to read about my pity party? When I post positive thoughts on the blog, it makes me feel happy. The interaction I have with all of my readers reflects that.

This week I really struggled. I had trouble staying positive. Kind of stuck in a rut, so to speak. It's been nine months dealing with this and I really want it to go away.

True confession: I've got that summertime sadness. I miss running. I really do. Reality bites.

But like the runner that I am, I dug deep and ended the week with some really strong workouts and a much better attitude. I am feeling better.

Just like pushing past mile 20, right?


So how was the week?

Friday, July 15, 2016

Book Review: Runners of North America: A Definitive Guide to the Species by Mark Remy

We are officially in the thick of summer. The dog days. Many runners are also in the depths of fall marathon training. Not this one, sadly. Damn you PF.

But I digress.

Long runs, speed work, tempo runs, fartleks, splits, yassos...GU, fuel, chews, hydration... compression, foam roller, Garmin...it's all running to me! Runners have their own language. Among other quirky things.

What do you think about on those solo long runs? Do you think about running? About other runners? That guy who just passed you? What kind of runner is he? Mark Remy thinks about other runners and over the years he's pretty much become an expert on running anthropology.  His new book, Runners of North America: A Definitive Guide to the Species is not only a laugh out loud read, it's spot on. Perfect light reading for this time of year.

You can purchase a signed copy here!
Or if you just want a cheaper, unsigned copy, you can buy that here!
Mark Remy is well-known to many of us runners from his humorous articles and now gone but not forgotten Remy's World column in Runner's World magazine. He is currently the proprietor of Dumb Runner, a website where he continues his amusing take on all things running. Remy recently published his 5th book, Runners of North America: A Definitive Guide to the Species where he shares his well-honed observations about all things runners.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

I've Got A Feeling...

I've been told that I have great instincts. Intuition? Dumb luck? I usually have a second sense for things.

Not always, but for the most part, things pretty much seem to work out for me. I like to fly by the seat of my pants. You know my motto: trust the gut. And I do. Because when I don't...doh!

Today's Wednesday Word is visceral, and yep, I've got a feeling about this post...



Sunday, July 10, 2016

Sole Food: A Week Off the Road

It's been a week of ups and downs. After facing reality and realizing that I needed to take more time off running than I thought to calm this latest PF flare, I immediately felt my willpower muscle start to atrophy. Maybe it's because I trained through injury all winter--who knows--but I'm just not feeling it right now. I'm not feeling sad or anxious or guilty--really, I'm not feeling much of anything at all.

If I had to pick a feeling, I'm feeling kind of free. In a footloose and fancy-free sort of way.

Like those pay-as-you-go wireless plans, I have no long term contracts. No commitments. No obligations.  Really, the only thing I'm working on is recovering from this injury. Yes, I need to maintain fitness, but there's something to be said about shutting off the alarm and rolling over to get a little more sleep. 

Yes, I did that this week. More than once.

I don't know this person but it feels kind of good. In spite of a less than productive week, workout-wise, I'm feeling pretty ok right now.


First, the lowdown on my workouts. Spoiler alert: there's not much to share.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Revising My Fitness Goals for the Rest of the Year

Oh 2016, I had such big plans for you! I was going to travel and run all over you. Even though I started off the year with that pesky foot issue, I worked through it and got to the start lines of my 2 bucket listers, the Sarasota Half Marathon in March and the Big Sur Marathon in April. I returned home from California full of hope and ambition! I felt euphoric and fulfilled. I set my sights on a few half marathons for the rest of the year.

Naturally, fate had other plans for me. My son broke his leg and we got a new puppy. I could roll with that, but after a fall on a rock last week, my plantar fasciitis flared badly. It has yet to calm down. As you read this, I'm getting an x-ray and spending the morning with my sports medicine specialist. No matter what the outcome of that visit, it's clear to me that a revision of my goals for the year is in order.

What's a runner to do?


It isn't as if I haven't been in these shoes before. Literally and figuratively. Does it even matter what's wrong with my foot? No matter what the diagnosis, I'm still going to have to take some time off. Again. So I took a look at the goals I set for myself this year and made some alternative goals that will keep me in shape and ready to run once I can hit the road again.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

This or That....Juxtaposition in Running

For the past year or so, I've been participating in a weekly blog prompt hosted by Deb Runs. Every week for the Wednesday Word link up, she gives us a word to write about. Because I write a running blog, I am tasked with the challenge of using the prompt to write about something running related. Some words are easier than others. Last week's word, delirious, was a bit of a challenge for me but I made it happen.

This week's word? Juxtaposition. Does anyone use this word in everyday conversation? And how do I tie it in with running? Well, never one to back away from a challenge, I wracked my brain to come up with a post for this one.


Sunday, July 3, 2016

Stampede 10k Race Recap

Another 10k? Why not? I'm embracing these shorter races where I can find my need for speed! Since this race takes place in the town where I live, I've run this one multiple times. I signed up a couple of weeks ago and made plans with my friend Sara to meet up.


And then disaster struck.