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Running Long, Loving Hard: The Recap.

Last New Year's Day, I shared a post in which I set new running goals for 2017. Today seems as good a day as any to look back on those goals and see how they panned out. {spoiler: not super great.}

1. Goal: Increase weekly mileage from 20 miles per week to 25. Outcome: Weekly average 21.2.

I guess that means this goal wasn't a total wash. wasn't a complete success either. There were 25 mile weeks; more so in the beginning of the year. There were also single digit weeks, such as the second week of November that saw a grueling NINE miles total.

March and April were definitely mileage high points, logging 106 and 111 miles respectively. Then May happened.

2. Goal: Increase annual total from 1090.8 to 1300 miles. Outcome: Annual total 1100.7

Again, not a total wash, but definitely not particularly close to what I had set out to do. I had settled on 1300 because that is the nice round number you get when you run 25 miles a week for 52 weeks. Around mid-year I adjusted…
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On Gratitude.

As with many things in 2017, Thanksgiving is presenting itself as somewhat problematic. I mean, it's not new per se. I've known for decades that the fairy tale story of indigenous peoples coming together with the newly arrived Europeans doesn't end well for America's first nation peoples. But that information was so easily stored deep beneath the conscious level - known but not known - so as to continue with cultural and family traditions.

It's more difficult this time, though, to fake it. To keep pretending and not acknowledge how messed up this holiday truly is. The fairy tale is deceitful. I'm getting woke, as the young folks say.

On a personal aside, I've struggled in a more conscious and vocal way with the concept of giving thanks on this one day. It has long seemed to me that if you need a calendar to remind you to be thankful then you may be missing the point just a bit.


I also have some things to say on the subject of gratitude and today se…

Race Recap: After the Leaves Have Fallen, v.2

You know how sometimes I say I entered a race and really didn't have any expectations about my finish time? And you know how most of the time I kinda lie to myself about that? Well, folks, not this time. I'm going to drop some stats on y'all to provide analytical context to today's After the Leaves Have Fallen half marathon/20K. 
1. On October 29, 2016, I ran 15 rail trail miles. I have not run more than 12 miles since that date; 2. I ran 12.2 miles on April 30 in preparation for the doomed Pineland Farms trail race in May; 3. I ran two 10 mile runs in August and October and an 11 mile run in August; 4. I have regularly fallen very much short of my 25 mile weekly goal, and in fact finished the first week of October with EIGHT MILES. For the entire effin' week.  5. My race counts for this year include one DNF (pineland), one DNS (Rosendale Runs half), and at least 3 DNER (did not even register - Run4Downtown, Orange Classic 10K, Tri-State Classic 10K). 
Do you see h…

Take a Hike.

I own hiking gear. Newly. Boots by Merrell and a hydration pack by Osprey and wool socks by Darn Tough. I've been a runner for just over five years. I guess now, I'm also a hiker. They are equally as rewarding. And equally as humbling.

Hiking may be even more so because what I've learned recently is hiking doesn't give one singular fuck about what kind of running shape you're in. You still are going to hurt the next day.

Early in July, The Runner and I spent a day local hiking. We've got some nice trails near us with spectacular views and fun names: Labyrinth. Lemon Squeeze. Gertrude's Nose. It was the lattermost that spawned 2017 being the time we became hikers.

It's real, real pretty. It took us about three hours. Mostly single track, about 7 miles long and just over 1100 ft of climbing. We felt accomplished and, at least for me, a little fancy.

A few weeks ago, The Runner agreed to accompany me on a trip to Lake Placid to celebrate all things autumna…

Updating the Gear.

They changed my shoes. I hate when they change the shoes.

Nearly two years ago I found the most perfect running shoes ever made. Or at least the best ones ever made for me - Mizuno Wave Rider 18. I told y'all about them at the time. I bought as many as I could afford and stockpiled them because as runners know, shoes are kind of a fleeting thing. Because, as manufacturers do, they made an update. And I hated it.

Last year, when my supply was running low and the Wave Rider 19s were the only version readily available, I tried a few other shoes: Brooks PureFlow, Brooks Ghost 9, and Ryka Indigo. The Ghost 9s were as good as I remembered the Ghost 6s but I ended up with blisters and holes in my shoes due to a weird fit issue.

In the winter I bit the bullet and ordered the Mizuno Wave Rider 19s. Initially I had hesitated only due to price - I usually order from an online discount retailer and a new issue is generally full price and harder to find on such a site - but once I had them in …

When the running changes.

When last I left you I was just coming off my first ever DNF, my hip was screaming obscenities at me, and the heat of summer was just getting started. Back in early June it seemed like this was going to be a long, hot, miserable season of running.

Until suddenly it's August and it hasn't been all that bad at all. Yes, the hip stayed wonky for a few weeks and still squawks at me if I try to go to fast or climb too many hills, but for the most part it's been a quiet lazy summer of easy running. So easy, in fact, that I've found myself reflecting back on the five years that have passed and how running has changed for me -- the shape is was and that is has taken, and what I need and receive from it.

It's no secret that when I first started running in June 2012, I was in a deep dark ugly place. I was very unhappy professionally, struggling with my identity as a mother, and feeling like life just kept happening to me. I had lost my voice and my agency to be in charge of …

Race Recap: DNF

I've never not finished a race. I guess there's a first time for everything. And today was that day.

A month ago, I had incredibly high hopes for this race - the Pineland Farms Trail Challenge. Since the spring thaw, I had been running better than I ever have before and had plotted out a handful of quality training runs to face 25K of tough terrain. I ended up with back-to-back sinus infections and a pesky cough that has yet to truly go away. I don't know how much that played into today's disaster but running has been a struggle recently. But I was still hopeful upon arrival in Maine. I have been facing a lot of elevation and running the trails and so despite the recent setback, I knew I could tackle this new challenge.

I didn't have any lofty goals: finish, finish without walking, finish in 2:30. Mostly this was The Runner's big race - his first 50 miler. I was excited to be taking this step but this definitely wasn't my A race.

Anyhoo. The day started out…