Saturday, December 11, 2021

Running Back in Time


Weekly Rundown
Sunday: trail run 7-ish miles--Garmin malfunction
Monday: pool running
Tuesday: rest
Wednesday: trail run 5 miles
Thursday: strength training
Friday: run 5.5 miles
Saturday: rest

Running

I was excited to run with the Chicago Northwest Trail Sisters running group again! On Sunday, we met at the Volo Bog State Natural Area. It was like a trip back in time when I pulled into the parking lot. This place has a lot of memories for me. I grew up a mile away from the bog and back in the day, it wasn't a state natural area, but the home of one of my childhood friends. In fact, we had no idea there was anything special about the place except that we always had so much fun going to play there. Our friend's father was an international shipping captain--who knows how they ended up in my small town--and they had the most amazing place with so much to do! The state of Illinois had rights over the bog but eventually invoked eminent domain and claimed my friend's property in 1974 to create a state natural area. To those of us who grew up there, it was shocking that the state could just take your home like that. My friend and her family left the state and we never heard from her since. The bog has since been declared a National Natural Landmark. The original buildings, including my friend's house, are still there. The barn where we spent many hours playing and attended so many parties is now used as a visitor center. 

The floating walkway over the bog

It was cold and rainy when the Trail Sisters met in the parking lot. There ended up being about 9 of us. We split up according to pace. I enjoyed exploring the paths that traversed the property and spotted a lot of familiar old buildings from my past. The property is just beautiful. There is a floating walkway across the bog. It was coated with icy rain and we had to move slowly across it. The rest of the trails were either prairie grass or wooded, similar to what I run at my local trails. I ran an extra loop to get a few more miles in, but interestingly, my Garmin never synced with the app, even though the miles are recorded on my watch. One of the women brought coffee and hot chocolate for after our run. I'm looking forward to meeting up again in 2 weeks at another local preserve. It's fun to explore new trails and oh so nice to have found some trail runners!


After we finished our run, I drove down the road and passed by my childhood home. I had heard that the people living there weren't taking good care of the property, so it wasn't a shock when I pulled up to look. It's hard to see it look like that--my dad took such pride in the appearance of our home. Truthfully, seeing it so run down and cluttered, it didn't even feel like I ever lived there. I'm glad to have my memories and that's what I'm thinking about. 

On Wednesday, I returned to my local preserve but didn't get to run as far as I had hoped. I was just kind of loping around the preserve and taking my time when I realized that I needed to get home to get ready for work. Anyway, it was a beautiful but cold morning. I ran into a friend I hadn't seen for a while and we spent a few minutes catching up before I headed back onto the trails. The trees were barren--winter is definitely knocking on the door! I finished up with 5 miles and headed into work. As always, I am so glad I got that run in before dealing with all the insanity. Covid is back with a vengeance!


Even though rain was in the forecast, I was pleasantly surprised to see a hit of pink in the sky as I headed out for my Friday morning run on the bike path. I pushed my run/walk intervals to 4:1 and while my legs didn't seem to mind at all, my pokey pace didn't reflect that! The morning was pleasantly cool and I was able to witness a spectacular sunrise over the lake that borders the path. The sun was huge that morning!

Pool Running

I really look forward to my Monday morning sessions at the pool! This week I pushed out of my comfort zone and did Max Out, a level 3 endurance and sprint workout. There are a couple of ladder workouts and let's just say I was really glad to be done, taking a few quiet moments to just float. As always, I was fooled by my effort because I was exhausted by the end of the day!

Strength Training

Glute activation continues!! So does lat activation. Sammy Jo started me off with lat work using the resistance band. This alternated with glute bridges with my foot on a box and my other leg extended up to the ceiling. Holy hamstrings! After 3 sets of those, I did bench presses alternating with GHD hip extensions. I'm always afraid I'm going to fall on my face, but I will admit that hanging down before I come up to do the extension always feels good, lol. After we finished, I stuck around to play on the rings. It's been a long time since I swung on the rings and while I couldn't hit 10 reps, what I did do felt great and gave me that adrenaline rush that I so love. Who doesn't love to fly?


How was your week? Do you ever go back to check out your childhood home? 

I'm linking up with Deborah and Kim for the Weekly Rundown. 




30 comments :

  1. That looks like a really cool place to run and how fun to revisit your childhood area. It's great to see you swinging on the rings again after your accident. You are brave! Looking forward to #runninghappy with you

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  2. I left my family of origin home when I got married in 1976. It was a three tenement home in the city, the smallest city in our country, Central Falls, RI. Like your Dad, mine took great pride in keeping not only our apartment, but the two rentals above, in pristine shape. After Dad passed away in 1984, Mom kept the house for five years, then sold it.
    A few years later, coming from an errand nearby, on my way to my Mom's new apartment, I thought I'd drive by the old place. When I turned into the street on which I lived the first twenty-three years of my life, I broke into a sweat. I thought I took a wrong turn. Nothing looked familiar. As I drove down the street, I was confused. How could I not find a street where I spent my childhood? When I got to the corner, I realized I was not on the wrong street. I turned around and found our home. It was unrecognizable. Though is was not deteriorated, the park-like grounds that Dad had carved from a city lot was gone, nothing but tar for a parking lot.

    I never went back. Again like you, I'll keep my memories alive, in my heart.

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    1. I wonder if a lot of us look at our childhood homes through rose colored glasses?

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  3. I would love to visit some of my childhood stomping grounds but they’re on the East coast and I don’t have any plans to head out there any time soon.
    I’m so over Covid and if it gets bad again I’m not sure I can deal with it in the ED. It may be time to move on. :-(

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    1. Funny you should mention that because I'm considering the same thing.

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  4. A beautiful place to run. So nice to visit your childhood area. I have always lived in the same city even if in 3 different houses but I often go to spend some hours in a near city to see again the places where my mom took me to play when I was a kid. I like to keep my memories alive especially the moment spent with mom also because she left too early.
    I wear Brooks too.

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    1. I'm sure you have many wonderful memories of your mom. Keep them close to your heart.

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  5. I haven't been back to my childhood home (in Highland Park, IL) for a very long time. I definitely want to go back on of these days, but am a little afraid it will make me sad. Crazy story about your friend's old house and property! So her house is now part of a National Landmark. Must have been weird to be back there.
    Sounds like your running is going great! I can see how getting in the pool on Mondays would feel good- but I agree, those pool workouts are tiring.
    Crazy how Covid is up and down in different parts of the country. Here in Florida we feel like it's "over" again (although we were fooled like that before, so I don't believe it.) Still, mask wearing is getting pretty casual again. We'll see what happens.

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    1. Covid is really bad up here. Even people who've had the booster are catching it. I'm just so over it.

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  6. How weird to visit your friend's house in such a different context. I have been back to the block of flats Matthew lived in when I moved in with him, and want to go back to where I lived in London when I was there before that. Family home is off-limits but I see on Google Earth the lovely trees they had in the garden have gone. I often do a run past all the places I lived in Birmingham before, when I was a student! I bore my friends with stories ... Great that you've found some trail friends to go off road with.

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    1. Whenever I'm in my old neighborhood in Chicago, I drive past the 6 flat we lived in after I finished college. I love that old neighborhood. But my hometown hasn't aged well at all. My parents and my childhood friends still live out there. I like to see them but nothing looks like it used to.

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  7. My childhood home looks about the same...but appears much smaller than I remember. It's way up in the NE corner of the state, so I don't get to see it very often. The trail run, from last Sunday, looks like a beautiful spot!

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  8. That's great that you had such a good time on the group run. Always nice to run with other runners when the opportunity arises.

    Congrats on joining the Brooks Run Happy team!

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    1. I'm just happy to find some women who like to run on dirt! :p

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  9. It's sad your childhood home is in disrepair. I can't remember the last time I went to see mine. It isn't even that far away. Hooray for some ring swings!

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  10. What a great group to have found! Interesting story about imminent domain. Sad your childhood home isn't what it used to be :(

    Congrats on the Brooks Run happy team!

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    1. It was an interesting lesson to learn as a child. Rumor had it that the family trashed the house before they turned it over to the state.

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  11. Every time I go back to LI, I drive by my old home. I can't believe how small it looks.

    Isn't it nice to connect with other runners?

    Congrats on your Brooks ambassadorship. I have applied in the past but never got chosen. But I don't really wear Brooks shoes anymore...unfortunately because they are super cute.

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  12. That sunrise is amazing!

    It hasn't been that long since my parents moved out of my childhood home, even if it feels as though it was (only 5 years). There was another home prior to that one, which I lived in for 9 years -- I've been back a time or two, although not recently, but it's always looked ok.

    Never looked at our home in Austin after we moved. I loved that house, but when I move, I move!

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    1. I've been loving the sunrises this fall. I'm not sure why they've been so spectacular, but it does make me worry.

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  13. It's great that you've been enjoying your runs with the Trail Sisters! Sad that your childhood home hasn't been maintained - thank goodness for memories.

    Congrats on the Run Happy Team! I was selected too - I didn't think we were supposed to announce yet so I didn't include the news in today's post. Looking forward to running with you :)

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    1. I didn't hear that we weren't supposed to announce it--but I am excited to serve with you!!!

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  14. That floating walkway over the bog is really cool and what a sad story about the state taking over your friend's family's property. How fun to find a group of trail running friends!

    Congrats on joining the Brooks Run Happy Team! I used to love running in Brooks, but my feet changed and now my right foot isn't happy in them so I switched to Altras. They have a much larger toe box and room for the bump on my foot.

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    1. I need a higher drop than what Altras offer. Brooks have been very good to my feet.

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  15. Wow, that's interesting about your friend's old home and the park! My parents still live in the house I grew up in, so I do see it often. My bedroom is now my Dad's computer room :) Hooray for trail running friends!

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    1. My parents moved right after I graduated from college, so it's been a really long time since I've been there. My grandma's farm is a subdivision. Nothing looks at all the same.

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