Showing posts from 2017


At my school, we’ve started posting teacher’s favorite quotes in the hallway. Most of these, I sort of glaze over, but a couple have caught my eye. One was from a friend of mine. When I first read it, I associated it with my job. It has since taken on a more powerful meaning.

There are different levels of being done. There is done for now. There is done. And, there is what my friend Jim calls FD, which is to be considered absolute done. (I’ll leave to you the definition of that acronym) The trick is to figure out how done you are. Sometimes, that can only be answered in hindsight.

 Theres times when I’m on the trail and I start to think it. “That’s it, I’m done with running. I don’t know why I do this” Then I talk myself down. “Ok, maybe I’m done with 100’s, there's nothing wrong with a good ‘ol 100k.” Then, I keep talking, “Ok, maybe I’ll keep 100’s but no more trail 100’s.”. Then I take a deep breath, “Girl, why are you doing this?”, and I put one foot in f…

Veterans Day 50k. Ramblings From A New Age Group

I’ve come to learn a few things along the way, and recently celebrating a birthday milestone, has given me time to pause, reflect and synthesize some of the things I’ve picked up about myself.  Enjoy

*Some days I can not give 100%, but I will give 100% of what I’ve got, Every.  Single.  Day.

*I am a feeler.  I feel deeply.  I make no apologies.  I may boldly go in the wrong direction, but I’m going there full-force.

*I people watch.  If you are in my inner circle, I will learn you.  I will do what makes you happy.

*I am immensely proud of the amount of life I have put into my life.   I will not stop.

*It all gets done.  Sometimes I don't know how.  Often, I lose sleep, but it all gets done.  

*I have spent 20 years helping students with challenges, accept and find a way through.  I expect no less from myself, with all of life’s hurdles.

*”I’ll handle it”, "I'm on it.", “I got you”, or “I’m here” are my warrior phrases.  If you hear one, step back, I’m going to do what nee…

I Get Back Up-Oil Creek 2017

DNF Did Not Finish

For years, I fought the initials..saw them as a sign of weakness...of unpreparedness...of a sign that I didn’t handle something correctly.

I’m over that.

Sometimes, It feels like I collect DNF’s.  There is a normal progression when I earn one, not unlike the stages of grief.   I rationalize.  I rip my race apart.  I wish I could get back on the course for one more chance.  I move on to the next race.  

I’ve come to accept that I am damn proud of my DNF’s.   Each and every one that I have earned has pushed me to my absolute limit.  I don’t quit easily, and it is empowering to know that I can push myself until I have absolutely nothing more to give, regardless of if I hold a buckle at the end or not.

One draw of Ultra-running, is that it doesn’t have a *&(% to give about what you’ve done before.  Experience is nice, but each starting line resets the clock.  Mother Nature, wild life, course conditions, these things are all out of my control, but will uniquely challenge m…

The Trail Doesn't Care---Pine Creek 100 Mile Challenge

You can come to the trail prepared or doesn’t care. You can come to the trail with something weighing heavy on your doesn’t care. You can come to the trail overwhelmed, overscheduled, and just plain doesn’t care. You can come to the trail happy and still doesn’t care.
The trail is what it is.  You come to it, and it will give you what it’s got.   If you’re quiet, it will teach you things.  If you are preoccupied with thoughts, it will force it’s will, and make it’s obstacles that much more challenging.  The sweet spot is in taking both the physical and emotional challenges in stride.   Let thoughts come and go.   Let emotions enter at will.  Look around.  Find the balance.  Feel what you feel.
I’ve heard that this sport is “90% mental, and the rest is in your head”, and I believe it to be true.   I can train my body to move, but I can’t figure out how to get my brain to stop.   
At the Pine Creek Challenge, the trail is a oxymoron.  It is flat...oh,…

Top 10 Things I Have Learned From the Beast

10.    If you talk about quitting.  You will find a way to quit.  Banish those negative thoughts immediately.  They are toxic.  If you let them fester, they will get bigger than they need to be.

9.  Things can and do change.  Mother Nature will assure that is true.   She likes to mix things up and get creative.  You can handle it.

8.  Its good  to slow down and talk to a friend.  It can lift your mood, help you laugh, get out of your head, and generally feel loved.  I highly recommend it.

7.  The Erie Canal is beautiful.   I've seen it under blizzard conditions, in rain, wind, hail, oppressive heat.  It is still gorgeous.  No matter what is happening to your outside, it's good to look will help you focus your inside.

6.  The Beast has the worst two-miles of ultra running:   you can see your friends...they are having fun, and you get to trudge through a wind tunnel, past three bridges (one of which seems to never get any closer) and roll the dice that you won't…

It's All In My Head---Montour

It started at this race last year.  I got hyponatremia, but worse I labeled myself as someone who “can’t run in the heat”.   I pushed and foolishly switched from the 50 to the 100 in the next Beast.  I finished 50.  Well, that’s because “I can't run in the heat”.   One of my favorite 100’s is C+O Canal.  This year,it was freakishly hot, over 90 degrees in April.  I only hit 75 miles.  Well, what do you expect from someone who can't run in the heat.   Next came Canal Corridor 100.  Again it was hot, I made it to mile 83, because…”SHUT UP, EVA!  You haven’t run well in the heat in a few races.  You’ve done great in others.  Do some research, figure out if there are things you can do differently.  Don’t be afraid to make changes, and throw the friggin label out the window.  You can't run well in the heat...YET!

I had to ditch the label.  I had to open myself up to accepting I wasn’t doing something right.   No matter how many races I’ve done, I could start at ground zero, and …

Zion: The Second Stone in Our Triple Crown

I remember the first time I felt him kick.  I put my hand to my tummy and had the following conversation:
Me:  Hi baby.   I’m your mommy, and I am so excited to meet you.   But, you know this doesn’t always work out.  So, in order to make this thing work, you and I are going to have to work as a team.   If you promise to grow and enter the world alive and healthy, I promise to give you a life full of wonderful adventures and memories.   Do we have a deal?
Noah:  kick.
He tried hard to live up to our deal.  He was born early, and so small that my mother was too afraid to hold him.   He didn’t do so well on that healthy thing, for the first few years, but we continued to work as a team, and now that little flutter I felt is 20 years old.
This past weekend, that little kicker and I completed the second rim-to-rim-to rim in our Triple Crown.   We hiked ZIon National Park in Utah.
During our first hike, in the Grand Canyon, I did a lot of teaching.   I had to show him everything from equipment …

Three Days at the Fair---Making Memories

I texted my sister today.   She lost a friend.  She was with him one day, having fun at a concert, and then,  he was gone.   She is crushed.  It is hard for her to make sense of it.  She is simultaneously angry, happy for the time she had with him, shocked, lost, and in some ways, finding the joy.  “At least he had a few months without a car payment”, she said.  

Life is about making memories.

Danielle has a wealth of memories with her friend.  He will not be forgotten.  He will never be replaced, but he will be cherished.

Danielle lives her life making the best memories.   She takes risks.  She is impulsive.   She laughs...hard.   She feels...deeply.  I am inspired by her, and try to live my life in the same way.

This past weekend, was my (last?) annual trip to Augusta, NJ with my buds Ken and JIm.  Every year, we travel and run Three Days at The Fair.   This race is a highlight for me.   Over years, we have set PR’s, crashed and burned, laughed, ate great food, made great friends, and m…

Resurrection Run

So-I got hurt a few months ago.  Hurt enough that I had to drastically change my running.  Hurt enough that I was referred to an orthopedic surgeon.  Hurt enough that I DNS'ed a race I really wanted to do.  Hurt enough that for the first time in a long time, I couldn't run through it.

I tried not to talk about it.  I forced myself not to limp.  I took A LOT of pain pills.   I iced and iced some more.   I researched.  I foam rolled.  I changed my stride.  I changed my pace.   I modified my training.   I cross-trained.  I started the certification process in something else, in case my running days were behind me.

When I was getting an x-ray, the tech asked me, "So, what are you going to do when he tells you that you can't run anymore?'

My first thought was, "something else".  Very quickly,  my mind flooded with hiking and biking and kayaking and yoga and skiing and etc., etc. etc.  I decided, then and there, I would focus on what I COULD do, vs. what my b…

Sometimes, the Race is a Suckfest: Rock and Roll Marathon, Washington DC

Sometimes, you start in an elite corral, after representing your shoe company.   

Sometimes, you start off strong, and something keeps you from doing what you love.

Sometimes, you get passed by pace bunny, after pace bunny.

Sometimes, you use all of your tricks, but none of them work.

Sometimes, you spend 20+ miles, trying to work through the pain.

Sometimes, you just want to stop, but know you'll feel worse if you do.

Sometimes, things go bad in front of A LOT of spectators.

Sometimes, spectators say exactly the wrong thing.

Sometimes, you just have to grit your teeth, and push.

Sometimes, you have to accept that finishing is winning.

Sometimes, you have to step back, so you can move forward.

Sometimes, you have to look for what the experience is teaching you.
Sometimes, it’s okay for it to suck.

Thank Heaven for Wet Rats

“Like a wet rat”.   That’s the part of the story that he stressed.  “Like a wet rat, that’s what she looked like when I pulled her out of the water.  I didn’t even see her fall it, I just saw her under the surface, and when I pulled her out, she looked like a wet rat”.  

It was years later, sitting on his swing, that he told me the rest of the story of when I was a toddler and had fallen off a dock full of people, into our lake, unnoticed.  “No one has ever scared me as much as you did that day.  I kept you close to me, from then on.”

He taught me.  I can stack wood like a pro.  It was a weekly chore for my brother Rick and I (Mark used to go hide in the basement---rotten kid).  When I was older, I learned to split the wood, with both an ax and a long splitter.   Earning the right to use the chainsaw was a badge of honor.  I can distinctly picture his face, when he finally let me use it.

I can change the oil in my car and properly hammer a nail, all because of him.  My dad built our hou…

Spousal Support: A few words from guest blogger Mark Basehart

Each one is different and yet the same--no matter how frequent or infrequent the “get-aways.”Her last thought before she starts a race is “why am I doing this?” (It always starts with why to power up her happy). Her first thought after finishing a race is “When can I do it again?”(A restless soul searching for essentialism—the disciplined pursuit of less by doing more). When she tightens her ponytail or puts on her running hat, you know it’s about to go down. She needs her alone time and space. She runs epically, reaching, owning it.Afterwards, I feel the need to send condolences for the loss of her toenails.
These people—you, who call yourselves ultra-runners—are simultaneously blessed and cursed.You understand what it is to embrace, live and manifest the YOLO mentality of the 21st century—it is what we ALL crave—to “regret proof ” this life—at one level or another, through the pursuit of our passions of choice. You have found a tribe of like- minded individuals who “get” you and th…

Dear Mother Nature

Dear Mother Nature,

I'm done apologizing to you.  I have tried to make amends and to appease your whims.  But, enough is enough.

You've thrown wind, rain, hail, ice, mud, blizzards, humidity, blistering temps, and more at me.  I've taken it all.

Sometimes, it has defeated me, and I've had to seek shelter.   Those times hurt the most.  Other times, I've found a way to persevere and push on.  All while you feign innocence by surrounding the days preceding and following my races with fair temps and boring forecasts.  You seem to relish in hurting me.

No more.

I am hear to fight.

Yeah, yeah, I know this will annoy you, and I'll have to bear the repercussions.   I've already seen the forecast for this weekend:  up to 10 inches of snow, accumulating ice, and wind gusts up to 35 mph.

You're getting predictable.

You see, I'm on a quest for my final Beast Double Buckle, and I'm not letting you get in my way of getting that job done.

So, go ahead, Mother…

Rest: Phunt 50K

“I need to process this.”That’s my standard line, when I don’t want to respond emotionally.When, I’m tired.
This past week, the alarm would go off, and rather than play that snooze-alarm math, that both lets me sleep until the last possible moment, AND get ready without looking like my morning is happening at light speed, I simply rolled over.I overslept for work THREE times this past week. This is NOT like me.
I inherited my disposition to keep busy from my mom.“NEVER sit before noon” is her mantra.Even at 82.Even when her daughter tells her to wait for her to arrange plowing vs. shoveling her monster driveway.“I’ll rest after, Eva” she says.“It’s better that way”.
If you cared to look, on any given day, you would see two emails that I send to myself every morning.One is a very specific daily delineation of what I want to accomplish and the other is my weekly “Tetris” chart.The latter, though less detailed, contains enough info that I can keep multiple plates spinning at the same time. …