Saturday, August 25, 2007

Guess what? Nobody will ever believe it - I went running today! I ran a little over 14 miles with Sheryl, Lisa and Sue. I braved the rain (well, okay, it wasn't raining that hard) with my new Patagonia rain jacket. Don't I look fashionable? I'm standing next to my trusty '95 Toyota 4-runner. I got up around before 4am (I was actually awake around 3:30am!). I remember a time when I was young when I used to go to bed at that time (or later)! We had a great time, and were blessed with a light rain shower, wonderful cloud cover, and a slightly lower temperature.

I remember when doing a half marathon (13.1 miles) seemed like a very long way to run. Now, I run that distance regularly!

Just goes to show you, where there is a will, there is a long distance run!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

One hilly Saguaro Monument 8 mile loop run

Today, my friend Nancy and I ran the Saguaro National Monument East 8 mile loop. The race is fast approaching on Labor Day, so we got in one last training run. We're ready! It was about 95 degrees when we started but we saw 2 javelina (they can be seen in the picture, but they are good at blending in) and a beautiful sunset, so it turned out okay after all. Javelina are pretty crazy looking - they are often called wild boars or wild pigs. They can be seen around Tucson, mostly in the outlying desert areas. It is always great to do a little wildlife viewing when I am running in the great outdoors.

God, thank you for the beautiful sunset, the amazing desert, wonderful friends, a husband who loves me, strong legs that move me and the power to walk through whatever comes my way today.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Dixie Dog is back! She has been going with me running again in the mornings, about 4.5 miles at a stretch. She has been climbing mountains in Colorado, so she is in great shape and really enjoying running with me. I sure have missed her. I have been taking her running along the Rillito River path with me. The wildflowers are blooming everywhere there and she really had a blast running across the soccer fields at Brandi Fenton park.

Of course, that means that my husband is also back! We have had great fun together this week, catching up and just enjoying being together. It is only for a few days, because he and Dixie are leaving again soon to go back up to CO. I'll be seeing them again in September when I head up to CO to visit them. I couldn't ask for a better husband - he is loving and sweet and I trust him unconditionally.

I'm doing a cutback week with my running, so instead of 40 - 42 miles a week, I only did about 30. I did a shorter long run this weekend (10 miles) - I usually do about 12 or more, so it was a little break for my body. I have been tired and I think it is good to listen to your body. I'll be refreshed for the coming week of running! While out on my long run today, I ran into these beautiful white dogs. The lady actually has 5 of these kind of dogs, but she can only walk 2 at a time. I have seen her and her husband out walking all 5 before, but I guess he broke his ankle, so she has solo dog walking duty. Very pretty dogs! It was very hot today on my run - about 90 degrees. At least I thought I was pretty hot - these guys were wearing fur coats! Here I am wearing my atalanta skirt again. Love it, love it!

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Another 12 miler Saturday with Lisa, Nancy, Laurie and myself. I tried out my new atalanta skirt ( Wonderful service from Heather. It is so silky and wonderful! The 'bumhugger' underwear are made out of a silky fabric with no tight elastic squeezing your legs! I really enjoyed my run today in it. Can't have enough running skirts, right? This one is a coolmax fabric in black, with hot pink trim on the sides. Wicks like crazy.

My sister Andrea and I met my cousin Christy, who lives in Utah, out at Miraval spa/resort today. Christy is having a girls weekend at Miraval and we got a chance to catch up with her today, which was great. Too bad we couldn't enjoy some spa services, also. It is a beautiful resort - maybe someday we'll do a 'sister' weekend out there. Check it out -

Nancy, Sue and I ran Saguaro National Monument 8 mile loop again today (a redeux of last week!), and it was pretty fun. There was a whole group out out there getting ready for the race which is only 3 weeks away! The hills are feeling easier every time with practice. I think life is like that. The more consistent I am in working towards a goal, the better I become in my career, my relationships (especially marriage and God!) and well, what isn't like that? Go out and get what you want - just chop that goal up in small pieces and before you know it, there you are!

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Nancy and I ran the Saguaro National Monument East 8 mile loop this morning. Nancy was great company and we had a fabulous time in spite of the ever constant hills, which felt easier today for some reason. We were greeted bright and early by a beautiful sunrise, followed by a rainbow. We were drizzled on lightly for almost the whole run, which was refreshing! The desert is such a magnificent place. What a great way to start the day. Afterwards, Nancy showed me the model home of her new house that is being built - huge and beautiful!!!
The annual race on this same course is only a month away, so we needed to get in a little training. I have run the Saguaro National Monument race twice and the first time I was sick as a dog! I am pretty stubborn when I have made my mind up to do something, so I ran it anyway.

Running has given me confidence to try all sorts of new things. I was always the last one picked in gym class in school. I never thought I had any physical ability. Today, I know the race is always against myself. Running allows me to connect with other women and centers me spiritually.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Yet another Saturday long run with the Chiclets et al! Those running with me today were Sheryl, Nancy, Lisa, Sue and Laurie, who I had never met before. Nice to meet you Laurie! Since Nancy and Lisa are marathon training, they each bought a Nathan 'Intensity' hydration pack, just like mine! It is made for women, and has plenty of space for gels, lip balm, camera, etc. They needed the extra water to do their increasingly longer runs. Here we are, all matchy-matchy, modeling our packs. :) I ran about 11.5 miles - we ran through the Canyon Ranch area of Tucson, which is always pretty. Cloud cover the whole time - who could ask for more?

I added up the miles I have run/hiked this past year (I keep a daily log of miles run and track the mileage on each of my pairs of running shoes - yes, I am definitely an accountant!), and here is the approximate tally:

Run - 1,465
Hiked - 111

I averaged over 4 miles a day! I wasn't running as much last summer or over the winter as I am now, so I think that is pretty good! I think keeping a log prevents me from overdoing and inviting injuries into my running. It has worked! I also know when it is time to say adios to a pair of shoes that are past their prime.
Corker (n.) A remarkable or astounding person or thing. This is my husband's nickname for me!

Friday, August 3, 2007

We sure have had some crazy weather lately. It is Tucson's monsoon season, so here come the heavy rains! Lots of flooding going on - just look at our backyard! This picture was taken over 3 hours after the rain stopped. The ground is just saturated. Lucky for me, the storms haven't hit in the early morning like they did last summer, so it hasn't affected my running a bit! I have been averaging about 40 miles a week for a while now, and intend to keep it up over the winter to get ready for marathon (and ultra) season. I usually take one or two days off a week, depending on how far my weekly long run is. My muscles feel strong and I feel very sturdy. I run in the morning in the summer, which is a great way to start the day. I get out there in time to see the sunrise, which on some days is just gorgeous. I always see lots of bunny rabbits, people walking their dogs and occasionally, a coyote. I ran the Rillito River path yesterday and took a jog off on a side road to visit my friends, the goats. They want to go running with me, can't you tell? The ones with the really short legs crack me up. I used to want a goat as a pet. The upside is that you don't have to mow your grass as often - the downside is they eat everything, including, but not limited to, garden hoses and other vegetation. Oh well, I think I'll stick with dogs for now.
Running gets me out there to see what life has to offer. If you want to see God's gifts, get out there and check it out. Thank you God for the beautiful sunrise you bless me with each morning.