Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Why Can't We All Just Get Along?

It seems like a radical idea these days.

I had this thought on my most recent bike ride when I had yet another encounter with an aggressive driver in a large SUV. I was riding on the road when he drove by me as if I wasn't there. He was so close I could touch the side of the car. There was no excuse for him not to move over. The road where I was riding has a large median strip and there were no cars coming in the other direction.

When I approached the driver at the stoplight, I asked him if he tried to run me off the road. He got defensive. "No, I did not try to run you off the road," he replied. I told him I was glad about that and asked him to be more careful the next time.

As I rode away, I fought tears.

This is getting old. But it's not just the bike.

Why are people so mean?

I don't know about you, but I've noticed just a general loss of kindness and civility these days.

Why Can't We All Just Get Along?

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Trials and Errors

This was a week of trials and errors, both on and off the road. Some weeks are like that. I've been struggling with some career decisions and a couple of days off early this week gave me time to clear my head. Wouldn't it be great to have someone to tell us what to do? Fortunately, there's running and cycling to give me time alone with my thoughts.

It was also an interesting week on the blog. My post about taking photos for Instagram was really popular and that made me happy! But I think my Runfessions post may have offended some people when I talked about race bumper stickers. By no means do I judge any of you who put running bumper stickers--no matter what distance--on your car. You know I am supportive of anyone who runs, no matter what the distance. I know how hard it is to up your distance and to line up to run a race. But I've shared in the past about how I didn't feel like a real runner until I ran 26.2, which is why that will be the only distance I put on my car. Even my first marathon didn't meet my standards. This is my issue, my problem and I'm sorry if anything I said was misinterpreted. We are all on our own journey. This blog chronicles mine.

Along with that, my workouts were a test of patience. The high humidity was back again. I had some time constraints and weather related issues, and this week flexibility was the key to getting it all done.

Trials and Errors

Friday, August 26, 2016

Runfessions: August Edition

I cannot believe it's the end of August! Which means it's time once again for Runfessions! Do you runfess? Marcia's Healthy Slice hosts this monthly wipe the slate clean linkup where you can let it all out. It feels sooooo good. I highly recommend it. It's been a tough month over here at the Long Way Home household and I've been waiting for this opportunity to blow off some steam and let the 'fessions flow...

Runfessions: August Edition

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Capturing the Radiance of the Sun: Taking Photos for Instagram

One of my favorite things to do is taking pictures with my iPhone. I've always had cameras but never seemed have the knack for capturing the right shot. Maybe it's because I was limited to film and had to wait for my pictures to come back from the lab. With digital photography and my iPhone, I get to see my pictures right away. I'm always amazed at the quality of photos I grab with my iPhone. I've been able to experiment and hone my picture-taking skills. Some filtering helps enhance what I capture as well.

I get a lot of requests for advice on taking fitness photos. I like to play with the sun and the sky and I thought I'd share some of the things I've learned with you. I'm no expert, though. A lot of what I've learned has been through trial and error, and there's been some dumb luck too. You know, right place, right time...

Today, I'm going to share some of my secrets for capturing the sun in my photos!

Taking Photos for Instagram

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Running with Mother Nature

It's been a steamy, stormy week but the running didn't stop! And yay for that. I took full advantage of the cooler air immediately after storms blew through several times and had some really nice runs that brought my confidence back.

I've been thinking a lot about how much the weather affects my running.

Running With Mother Nature

Clearly, the heat and humidity are a huge factor in my running. My half marathon times from hot and humid conditions are markedly slower than times from that distance run in much cooler conditions. I know that's pretty standard for most runners. But after watching the women's and men's marathons in hot and humid Rio this past week, I had to ask myself, is it possible to "heat proof" your running?

Friday, August 19, 2016

5 of My Favorite Things....Lately

Summer's winding down but it's not out yet! Actually, even though most of us are still dealing with significant heat and humidity, this is my favorite part of summer. The days are getting shorter, the mornings a bit cooler. Things are pretty dry and crisp. It just feels different! The kids are back at school and there is a welcome return to routine.

In the spirit of the Friday 5, I'm writing about five of my latest favorite things! 

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

So I Run...

No one tells you how hard it is to be a mom.

When my boys were younger, being a mom was easier. Little boys, little problems, right?

Hugs and kisses and wiping tears away. That's all that I needed to do.

Now? Not so much. Big boys, bigger problems.

"A mother is only as happy as her unhappiest child". 

So I run.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Can't Stop, Won't Stop!

Hot enough for you? This week, Mother Nature unleashed a fury of scorching, steamy weather on top of what has been an already hot summer for us Midwesterners. While a few weeks back I wrote a post about embracing the summer heat, loving these conditions is a challenge for even the most summer loving of us!

But you know the mantra: the weather might be hot but the workouts don't stop!

Ok, I just made that up.

But truly, the workouts haven't stopped. I just can't, you know....

Friday, August 12, 2016

Book Review: Boston Bound

How many of us have that one pinnacle event, that must-do marathon, that bucket list race? For me, it was the Big Sur International Marathon. For Elizabeth Clor, that race was the Boston Marathon. But as many runners know, even if training runs are on the mark, qualifying isn't as easy as it would seem. In her memoir Boston Bound, Clor chronicles her journey through multiple marathons as she attempts to slay the demons that kept her from lining up at what most long distance runners consider to be the ultimate race of marathoning.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

A LIfe Without Running...

Imagine if you will, a life without running.

Maybe you can.

I've given it some thought. I've had a tough go of it this summer. I've finally conceded to this relentless PF and pulled back on my mileage and my pacing. By doing so, I've lost a lot of fitness. Combine that with the heat and humidity of summer and my runs have been really tough.

I miss those easy 8-10 milers that I normally run on the weekends.

I miss the fast paced 5-6 milers I bust out during the week.

I miss training for a race.

Right now, I'm happy if I can finish 4 miles without stopping to walk.

I blame the weather and PF but is there more contributing to my problems with running?

Is this the inevitable slowdown that comes with aging? Can I accept that? Should I just hang up my shoes?

People do stop running as they get older. The proof is in the numbers. When I moved from the 45-49 age group into my current old lady group, the drop in the number of participants was dramatic. Arthritis happens. All that wear and tear on the joints takes a toll.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Staying Grounded, Staying Afloat

Life has been full of ups and downs this summer.

Thankfully, I've got running and yoga to keep me grounded. And I've always got my sense of humor to keep me moving forward.

It's been a really full week and there's lots to read here...

I could not get my legs all the way up this time!

Friday, August 5, 2016

Running Treasure Hunt!

It's August. And it's hot. I don't know about you but I don't feel motivated to do much of anything this time of year. I just want to lay in a hammock somewhere, on the beach, reading a trashy novel.

But I'm a runner, dammit! So I've been doing what runners do this time of year, slogging along, trying to get some miles in, and posting sweaty selfies. Last week while suffering through one of my runs, I couldn't help but notice all kinds of interesting things along the roadside. After I run by, I think about those things I see and the story behind them. Since my lack of ambition has extended to the blog, those thoughts about roadside treasure inspired a theme custom-made for the lazy running blogger.

Maybe the heat has affected my brain, but I thought, why not host a running treasure hunt! Yes! We all see interesting things on the run, right? While interesting may be in the eye of the beholder, I think it's fun to see what other people find along the route. I've got a link up at the bottom of this post so you can share your post. You don't have to be a blogger. You can post your Instagram, Facebook, or blog URL in the link up.

The rules are simple. After you link up, please visit at least 2-3 others to share the love. I do ask is that you link back to this post. There's a graphic at the bottom of the post you can use if you'd like. Feedback is always welcome!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Running Captivated

Fully 99% of my runs are outside. If you live in the northern part of the US, you know that running outside any time of year can be a challenge. We experience the most extremes of weather--from the polar vortex to heat that has been described as hell. I may adjust my schedule in accordance with the conditions, but the only conditions that force me to run on my treadmill are ice and lightning. When my boys were little, sometimes I had no choice but to run inside. Life happens. But it's those runners who choose to run on the treadmill--I may not understand you, but I'm not judging you.

It's just that treadmill running is just so darned boring. What is there to look at while you are running on the treadmill? The TV?

Quite often I lose myself in my runs because the scenery is so captivating. Where I live and run, the scenery isn't so spectacular, but year round, Mother Nature comes through with rewards almost every morning. For the last couple of years, I've attempted to capture what I see on my runs.