Showing posts with label Trail running. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Trail running. Show all posts

Saturday, June 8, 2024

I'm Smoked

Disclaimer: This post contains an affiliate link.

It's a silly title for this post and I'll probably get all kinds of spam from smoking websites. But let me explain. When he's tired, which is pretty much all of the time, my dad likes to tell everyone how he's 'smoked'. So much so, that it's become an ongoing joke in my family. When someone is tired, we say we are 'smoked'. 

Yep, I'm smoked. 

Not stoked. 

I haven't bounced back from the Blue Springs Trail Race I ran a few weeks ago. I took it easy the week after the race and I don't think I've been pushing myself excessively. My body is telling me something different. If I want running to feel good again, I need to listen to my body and give it a little more rest. You can imagine this isn't making me happy. Let's hope it's not long before I'm feeling light on my feet again.

Saturday, June 1, 2024

What A Week!

I was home this week to work on continuing education. In the past, I would travel to attend an in-person conference, but my CME allowance has been cut substantially. My pediatric nurse practitioner professional organization allows members to attend their annual conference virtually, so I did that, which was a much more affordable option. The conference content didn't disappoint and I was able to obtain over 20 CME hours. I even spent one of the days sitting outside on my deck while watching lectures--it sure beats sitting in a conference hall! I also liked scheduling my sessions around my workouts. 

My week wasn't without some bumps in the road, though. On Sunday, I was scratching an itch behind my ear and felt a sharp pain. I asked my hubs to look at it and he told me it was a pimple. I had him snap a photo and sure enough, I had a tick bite behind my ear. I didn't see a tick in the lesion--hopefully, I dislodged it when I scratched it. Just to be safe, on Monday, I contacted one of my partners at work and asked her to call in an antibiotic for Lyme disease prophylaxis. The area behind my ear hurt for several days and it was a good reminder that I need to apply repellant not only to my arms and legs but also to my neck and behind my ears. And to wear a hat!

On Friday, I drove my parents downtown to Northwestern University Medical Center so my dad could see a neuro-ophthalmologist. A few weeks ago, he woke up in the middle of the night with a sharp pain on the left side of his head. The next morning, he had double vision. I sent him to the ER, where they did a CT scan and an MRI, which showed no pathology. Since he's still been having issues, his local neurologist recommended he see the specialist. The good news is that he said my dad didn't have a stroke and that the double vision should resolve soon. I'm so glad for the positive diagnosis. We were stuck in heavy traffic both in and out of the city, which gave us a lot of time to catch up. It was nice to spend the day with them.

Sunday, May 26, 2024

I Can Do Hard Things

I think this is my new mantra. Last weekend's trail race (did you read my recap?) really forced me to dig deep and keep going when I wanted to give up. That strategy came in handy this week when I did the full Murph workout at CrossFit. 

I'm so grateful for what my body lets me do and what my mind pushes me through.

Sunday, May 19, 2024

The Make-up Race

It was race week and I was ready! I had some great runs leading up to Saturday but I didn't push myself too hard. I wanted to keep my legs fresh. I did notice an area of concern--my left glute is not firing. I noticed it on Sunday. My right glute was really sore after my run and while I was running, I felt like it was doing all the work. At my race on Saturday, I stumbled way more than I should have--catching my left toe and nearly falling multiple times. I didn't fall, thankfully--that would have been tragic on this trail, as it's really rocky and rooty. But it reinforced that I need to get back to basics with some posterior chain work, focusing on that side.

This week I learned that I received a complimentary entry to the Indianapolis Monumental Half Marathon from Brooks! The race is November 9. I've always wanted to run this one and November is a good time of year for a long distance race. A couple other teammates will be joining me.  I keep saying I'm done with long distance road racing, but here I go again.  People who've done it say it's a 'fast course'. We'll see about that!

Saturday, May 11, 2024

Don't Worry, Run Happy!

The family drama I wrote about last week spilled into this week. I keep wishing it would go away, but I don't think that is going to happen. Thank goodness for running and my workouts. I was able to sweat out a lot of my stress again. We had beautiful weather for most of the week, and I fully enjoyed my trail runs. There's just something about being in nature that makes me so happy!


Saturday, May 4, 2024

Sweating it Out

Once again, running and my workouts were there to help me get through a stressful week. This week, my parents were the main source. My dad has been having some minor health issues but made them into everyone's problem. I won't go into details, but I did get a glimpse of what the future looks like for my sisters and me. It's not going to be pretty. 

On the plus side, Cocoa has completely recovered from her surgery! I bought her some new tennis balls this week and we've been busy chasing them around the backyard. She also chased a big opossum out of our yard. Yeeeesh....

Running was my salvation. So was CrossFit. There's nothing better to relieve stress than to sweat it out. As always, I am grateful that my body still lets me push it.

Saturday, April 27, 2024

Ups and Downs

This was a tumultuous week! Weather aside, I had a lot of ups and downs. I've been feeling unsettled since Cocoa had her surgery, and life threw some curve balls my way this week. Did you see the full moon this week? It was HUGE and I'm blaming everything on that. Oh, and Mercury has been in retrograde if you believe that stuff. Normally, I don't, but I needed some explanation for all the chaos of the past couple of weeks! Thankfully that's all behind us and the week did end on a high note. 

My trail friend whose race recap let me know that I missed my race, reached out with an opportunity to redeem myself after my unintentional DNS.  She told me about an upcoming trail race on May 18 on the Blue Springs Segment of the IAT. The distance is listed as 'about 12 miles', which is perfect for me. It sounds really laid back and there's locally brewed beer at the finish line! After triple-checking the date,  I put the race on my calendar. I'm looking forward to it!

Sunday, April 21, 2024

An Unintentional DNS

Remember that trail race I recently signed up for? Run From the Taxman? Apparently, I put the race on the calendar for the wrong Saturday. I thought the race was taking place on the 20th, but it was last Saturday the 13th. When I saw one of my trail friends sharing her results on Facebook last Saturday, I had the strangest feeling of disbelief come over me. How could this have happened? That I mixed up the date on such an important event really bothered me and the unease was hard to shake.

This whole week was unsettling and it wasn't just the DNS that threw me off. I was home all week to care for Cocoa. She wouldn't leave my side the whole time. She also wouldn't eat or drink for the first couple of days. She was on quite a few medications when I brought her home and I wondered if they were causing her nausea. They also gave her a nausea medication but it didn't seem to make a difference. On Tuesday, I removed the fentanyl patch, thinking maybe that was causing some side effects. That helped a lot--she started behaving more like herself, wanting to chase her ball, and eventually eating more food.

Meanwhile, I tackled a lot of little household projects that needed to be done. Like washing the baseboards and the china cabinet. Organizing the closets. Gathering items for Goodwill. The interesting thing, at least to me, is that when you don't clean your own house (I have a cleaning lady every month), you don't notice what isn't being cleaned--until it becomes really gross. It felt good to get that stuff done! I also pulled weeds and old plants in my perennial garden and am trying to decide what I want to plant there.

Saturday, April 6, 2024

I'm Glad I Went

I won't sugarcoat it--the weather was just miserable this week. Except for Sunday, the wind, rain, cold, and yes, snow, was relentless. I managed to get all 3 of my runs outside. It was hard to motivate myself, but that old saying is true: you never regret going for a run. I reminded myself about that trail race in 2 weeks. I didn't want to run on my treadmill. Who knows what the conditions will be on race day?

While I was glad to be done, I finished all of my runs with a smile on my face! Running in bad weather really tests my mental toughness and reminds me of what I am capable of! I am so glad I got outside for all my runs!

Saturday, March 30, 2024

What's Your Idea of Fun?

My idea of fun is certainly different from most people's!  I love running and I love trail running the most. Getting muddy doesn't bother me. I also love lifting heavy weights and challenging my body at CrossFit. It's hard in the moment, but the reward at the end is a feeling of accomplishment. Of doing something difficult, wanting to quit, but not giving up. 

I have been struggling with finding goals for myself this year. What's a runner to do but to pick a challenging race? I signed up for a trail half marathon, Run From the Taxman, in 3 weeks on a segment of the Ice Age Trail. I ran there last fall during the Mammoth Challenge, so I know what to expect. It's really hilly, so I know it won't be easy. I'm already feeling anxious, lol.

Oh, but that finish line feeling is everything. And that to me is fun!

Saturday, March 23, 2024

Just Keeping On

Our early spring was put on hold this week with the return of cold, windy, and snowy weather. By the end of the week, I was feeling a bit fatigued. I don't know if it was due to the cold weather, an impending illness, or just the toll of some very active weeks. I'm finally adjusted to the time difference and am sleeping better. Hopefully, when things warm back up, I'll find my mojo again!

Saturday, March 16, 2024

Back to Work

From California to Wisconsin, I did some traveling this week! I won't deny it--between all the activity of last week and the time change, I was exhausted most of the week. I did my best to stick to my schedule and to my surprise, my runs and CrossFit felt good. Work was really busy and I dove right back in as if I had never left. 

It's funny how that happens, isn't it?

Saturday, March 9, 2024

California Love

Long post alert!! I've been out of town all week, visiting my sister and brother-in-law in Palm Desert, California. You know how it is when you visit a beautiful place--you want to do all the things and that is what we did! By the end of the week, my feet were sore and I was tired. I'm heading home today, with one day to recover before I return to work and life on Tuesday. It should be interesting, considering the 2 hour time difference between California and Chicago plus the 1 hour time change this weekend. 

In the meantime, I've recapped this very full week here on the blog. Thanks in advance for reading!

Sunday, March 3, 2024

The Real Deal

It sure seems that the groundhog was right this year! This false spring we've been experiencing may be the real deal.  We had some really strong storms this week with multiple tornados--a real rarity in February for us--a sure sign that the weather is shifting. I've been enjoying some nice runs and even got to run in shorts this week. We were above 70F this week and we're supposed to hit that again. If this warm weather pattern is wrong, I don't want to be right. 

Saturday, February 24, 2024

Trail Time!

With no races planned right now--save for the Shamrock Shuffle 8k in March--I refocused on trail running again. Training for my half marathon was fun and all, but I sure missed my trails. Not only do I love running in nature, but I also enjoy just running for fun, with no paces to hit and no set distance to complete. With the weather improving, the timing is just perfect. I'm looking forward to watching spring arrive. My spidey senses are tingling for an early spring, as the birds have been singing and the deer are frolicking. We've been hitting record temperatures this week, with more predicted for next week. Stay tuned!

Saturday, February 17, 2024

It's All Good

On Saturday, I always sit down to finish up my weekly rundown. I write up my workouts in all week long and at the end of the week, I try to find a common theme to come up with a title for my post. This has been a pretty uneventful week and I have to admit that I was at a loss for a title! In fact, it's been all good this week. So there it is...

Saturday, January 6, 2024

Starting the New Year on the Right Foot

I've been reading a lot of posts about goals, 'word of the year', 'ins and outs', and resolutions. I think most of you know that I kind of just roll with what the year hands me. Already, I've signed up for a Chicago half marathon that takes place next month. My youngest son is going to join me and I know several other local runners who are doing it as well. I hoped that our mild winter would continue, but it is Chicago, and it looks like we are going to get some winter weather in the coming weeks. To prepare for this race, I'm going to do more running on the roads and focus on consistency. I'm a little less focused on my time. I want to feel good when I cross that finish line!

Saturday, December 30, 2023

Mission Accomplished

I continued my quest to hit 1000 miles for the year and on Wednesday, my mission was accomplished. I didn't stop running, though! I kept up with my usual routine, adding a few more miles to my yearly total. I'm feeling very satisfied with how my year went, both on and off the road, and that is a great feeling!

Saturday, December 16, 2023

A Record Breaking Week!

Ok, the title of this post might be a bit misleading...but I did have 2 big PRs at the gym this week! I might not be able to PR in my running shoes, but it is nice to know that I can still make gains in the gym. This made me so happy and was a really nice way to wrap up my year of fitness. 

I haven't made any plans or set any goals for 2024. Right now I'm content to soak up what was one of the most fun years, both on and off the road, that I've had in a while. My running shoes took me to some really fun places--from running the mountains in Palm Desert to running that trail race in Leadville, Colorado to running on the beach in Santa Monica at Brooks' Hype Fest! I ran the streets of Chicago, trying out a new half marathon on the boulevards of the west side. And while I didn't run in Alabama, my feet got plenty wet while I skied behind Holly's boat. Don't forget about that sister trip to Banff! Of course, there were all those miles I ran on the Ice Age Trail in Wisconsin, culminating in completing my 3rd Mammoth Challenge in October. 

While I take some time to catch my breath, I'm also waiting to hear if I've been invited back to join the Brooks Running Collective. In the meantime, I'm just going to lace up and enjoy my miles. At this writing, I have 38 miles to get to 1000 for the year. I had no idea I was that close, so let's see if I can dial it up for the next 2 weeks. You know I love a challenge...

Sunday, December 3, 2023

'Tis the Season!

'Tis the season for:
- snow, which we've had twice already and it has melted both times,
- holiday prep, which I've been embarking on this weekend. I already have some shopping done, the tree is waiting for decorations, and I'm planning on baking today,
- holiday fun! I had two fun events planned for this weekend,
- holiday themed runs--I don't have any on the calendar this year...yet,
- sneezin'. I'm battling a cold virus and trying to power through it as much as I can. On Saturday, I had to bail on my planned 3rd strength sesh and plans to go to the holiday light show at the Botanic Gardens with my sister.