Showing posts from 2018

Finding My Way Back

It’s been two months since I’ve raced. Two months since I’ve felt words bubbling up so much I couldn’t wait to write them down. Two months since I’ve felt that raw openness that only ultra-running can give me. Two months since I’ve been so physically depleted, that I become primal. Two months since I’ve been able to silence the to-do lists and responsibilities and let my mind wander to where it really needs to go. Two months since I’ve really felt like me.

I found me again on the trail this weekend. I found rain and mud and cold and solitude.   I found deep connections and a recognition of what is really important. I found the re-living of memorable encounters. I found where I truly can make a difference.

I discovered that I was making excuses. I discovered I was hiding from the trails  and playing it safe. I discovered that my comfort zone is in NOT playing it safe. I discovered that I have more to give, even when I think I don't. I discovered that I can be there more strongly for others, when…

Eagleton Trail Ultra---Finding My Heartbeat

“I’m going to run a 50k on Sunday”, I told Mark.
He gave me that look.   That look that I know immediately means he’s running through schedules and commitments.   “You’re kinda running on empty. Are you sure?”, he said.
“I’m a little lost.  I need to find my way.  I need my heart to beat”.
And, with that, I set off to Pennsylvania for the 50k.
My only goal in this race was to find a new normal with my nutrition, which has taken a knock with a new little body glitch.  That task actually proved pretty easy to manage. All I had to do is stop looking at what I could NOT do, and focus on what was still available to me.  True, I had to open my mind to food choices I had not previously accepted, but, all in all, the process was not the roadblock I had expected it to be.
The real change hit me when I hit the first hill in the course.   My heart was beating out of my chest. I actually stopped to feel it.    I took my mind out of the experience, and decided to just feel.
I felt so alive!  
My he…

Imma Do Me

It’s funny where my brain takes me on these long runs.  I could be battling extreme darkness, strange creatures on the trail, lack of ability to drown out the varied noises around me, punishing rain, exhaustion, and those little gravel stones that for the life of me, I could not keep out of my shoes...but I thought of a student.
When I first met this child, my teacher brain told me that this was one who was going to generate a lot of phone calls, meetings, behavior plans and tests of patience.   This child would just glare at me and refuse to participate. Finally, perhaps to save my own sanity, I grabbed some marking tape and mapped out a square around his desk.  “Two rules”, I said. “You don’t get to bother anyone else and you don’t get to use electronics. All else is fair game”
“Imma do me” was his response.
“Good”.  I said “Imma do me, too”
He challenged it.  He would try to draw me off task with poor choices.  “Imma do me” I told myself. He watched my every move, but looked at…

TARC 50k

It hit me, somewhere between “this sucks” and “who the heck marked this course”.  Somewhere in the midst of my race, it dawned on me that I am soon going to be coaching other people’s races.   The thought energized me. I took each step with a new determination. I thought about how I could use what I was going through to make my team stronger individuals, both in and out of running shoes.

It will be up to me to help them push past obstacles.

It will be my job to show them that it doesn’t matter what Mother Nature throws at them, they can persevere.

It will be my task to shift mindsets from “I can’t” to “I’ll try”.

I thought about how lucky I am to still be a competitive runner (I took 5th place!!!) while simultaneously coaching the up and comers.  

I can share what goes through my mind, and how I have to listen very closely to the quiet positive voices, because sometimes the negative ones are quite loud.

I have a wealth of successful trials and ridiculous errors.

I can help them learn to lo…

Canal Corridor 100: For a Boy and His Dog

Her AKC name is Moxie Mae. Noah calls her: Bubba Baby BoBo Goober Bumbles DohDoh Baby Bear

And, a rotation of other equally ridiculous names.   

He’s the reason we have her.  It was truly love at first sight.  We were perfectly happy with our mean-spirited, antisocial greyhound mix, but that pup wasn’t enough.  Long story short, at Noah’s prompting, we had two dogs. Time passed and our grumpy dog did, too.

Mox, from day 1, was the alpha dog, and that includes with my child.  This furball has him wrapped. He will text me from college requesting a spontanous picture of her becacuse he misses her so much.  Notice, I didn’t say he asked after his mother, he only wants the dog. Nearly everytime I open facebook, I see that he has tagged me in yet another adorable golden retriever video, because he has the delusional thought that we will get another.  Not happening. He knows it. Being wrong does not slow him down in the least.

What does this have to do with running 100 miles?  Absolutely NOTHI…

Green Jewel 50K

I am overwhelmed and humbled by the love, support and kindness I have received in reaching a running milestone.  For all you do, for all you are, I will be forever grateful you are in my life.  Thank you to everyone who has shared this moment, and all the moments leading to it, with me.

"Life is worth living if you love to love, if you do what you like, if you work with pleasure, if you live so that you can leave something behind, if you learn to share and appreciate every moment you are healthy, free and alive." Andy Hertz

I have now competed:

27-Marathons  2-Full iron-distance triathlons 26-50 k's(31 miles) 14-50 milers 4-100k's (62 miles) 4-75 mile runs 20-100 mile runs 1-115 mile runs 2-150+ milers  Making my total marathon number 100.

All that I'm after is a life full of laugher, and I will chase it with relentless forward progress.
Next goal:  Make my ultra total = 100.  And, to get Roger to get there, too!

Dirty German 50K: Some Statistics

As I am closing in on a personal running milestone, I thought I’d do so research on what other runners are doing out there.  Here’s what I found:

Number of miles in a marathon:  26.2 Number of miles in a 50K:  31.07 Number of miles in an Iron Distance Triathlon:  140.6 Percent of US population that has run a marathon:  0.5% Total number of people who finish a marathon annually:  581, 811 Total number of US marathons held annually:  570 Average number of sneakers needed to train for a marathon: 2 Average number of calories burned by a woman running a marathon:  2,880 Average number of miles per week for marathon training: 40 Percentage of Ultra finishes that are 50k, 50M, 100k, or other:  92% Percentage of Ultra finishes that are 100 miles: 8%
Female marathon participants:  38% Percentage of women marathoners in my age bracket:  11% Percentage of women at 100 mile races: 26% Oprah time:  4:29 Number of weeks Runner’s World says you should wait between running marathons:  8-12 (6 if you’re in shape) Pe…
I have this hat.  It was one of the first things I ever received from Brooks.  And, it says “Run Happy”. It’s in rough shape, since I’ve worn it to almost every marathon I’ve ever run.  

It won’t be long for this world, but, as I put it on this morning, I thought about just how important “running happy” has been for me.  Today would be no exception.

Before I left, Nat asked if I’ve run this race before.  I couldn’t remember. We had to go to the wall. “Mom, you’ve ran it TWICE!”.  

“Oh!, Now, I remember.  They had clowns at mile 24.  Who puts CLOWNS at mile 24???”

I shouldn’t have shared that tidbit.  She used it against me when I asked her to join me and run the 5k.

Then she followed with “ Mom, actually, running is not my thing.  How about we take a yoga class from Megan?”

It was similar with Noah: Boy:  “Mom, find me a race”. Me:  I’m all over that.  How about Mississauga?  Net downhill. Gorgeous lake views and it puts us in Canada during hockey playoffs. He was in!  I was pumped! Then …

Start Before You are Ready: C+O Canal

My brother is not the most patient man, and really wasnt when we were growing up.  I remember standing on the high board, ready to practice my back dive. I was taking a few seconds to get ready and I can still hear him “What are you waiting for?  It’s just going to get harder if you wait. Just GO!”

That lesson has carried with me.  I get so frustrated when I hear people say “I start XYZ on Monday”.  Just start. Once you’ve decided to start, you have started: get going.   

I dove off that board, at that time, to get my brother off my back.  But, he taught me a lesson: It’s okay to go before you are ready. And, “ready” can make it harder to go.

I had the flu last week.   They yucky, can’t move, feel horrible, no food going in, flu.  I also added bronchitis to the mix. I was not training. Actually, I was not doing much of anything except feeling sick and binge watching ‘The Good Doctor’.    And, I had C+O Canal 100 this week. I was not ready.

One of the teacher’s I worked with,…