Hi there and Happy Sunday!

I slogged through a trail 10k yesterday morning and my victory was that I didn’t quit. I ran the Wolfe’s Run Trail 10K, the third and final race in a “triple crown” series held by Complete Race Solutions here on Staten Island.

not my finest race photo but it was free and that’s always a plus. It also clearly shows that this wasn’t easy for me and that means I was working hard and that means I give myself a pat on the back. Go me!

The funny thing is that last year I ran the first two races of the series but got injured before the third so I missed out on getting my last interlocking finisher’s medal.

Last year’s 2 interlocking medals

And yesterday I got that 3rd piece but it is a totally different design for 2018 than it was for 2017 so no bueno. But even so, I still feel complete now anway. HA!

this year’s missing piece

The weather was ridiculously warm. It was in the mid 70s by 10am when the race started and my body has barely had time to acclimate to running again let alone acclimate to the warm temps.

The course was set up as two 5k loops. I kid you not that I was ready to go home after that first loop and it was so hard to talk myself into going the distance.

I finished in 1 hour and 24 minutes and honestly I don’t even care what the finish time was. I’m just happy to have completed my first race of the year.

My feet are pretty banged up. I have blisters everywhere. And there were plenty of rocks and Sweetgum tree balls that irritated my poor toes.

running over the sweetgum balls….ouchie!

The course had a nice mix of terrain including about 150 feet on the beach, some multiuse paths and then some technical trails through the woods.

running on the beach

I had to walk a whole lot. The first 5k I only walked on the inclines and on the beach until I got to the wet sand. But the second 5k? I walked some downhills too. I was THAT tired.

I’m at the far left. This was the first mile before everyone smoked me and before I totally melted in the sun 🙂

There was this one moment when I realized that I hadn’t needed to look at any of the trail markers because there was always someone in front of me but by the second 5k there was no one in front of me and that meant getting to know those little orange ribbons and yellow arrow signs in the ground real well. Hey, at least I didn’t get lost!

I enjoy the races that that Complete Race Solutions puts on for so many reasons. They’re soooo enthusiastic about what they do. They take a lot of time crafting the courses and the same group of runners seem to attend each event so I like to see familiar faces even if I only know one or two really. I love that the races are all just a few minutes from home and in parks that I frequent regularly anyway. This particular park is about 1/2 mile away from my old high school and where I’d hang out all the time with my friends. It’s also the same park that has the dog park that I used to take Duncan to daily when he was a lot younger.

I’m secretly wanting to run the NJ Half in 2 weeks but I know I won’t be ready. So my next race will be in about 6 weeks when I run the Spring Lake 5 miler. I’m hoping to get stronger in the next 6 weeks. But hope is where I’ll leave it. 🙂

In non-running news Duncan is still doing the usual….

like a siamese twin.

morning nap in the warmth of the sunshine

And I’m trying not to cut myself as much at work but that’s not going so well. I usually have 3 bandaged fingers by the week’s end. LOL. It’s not just the blade that I cut myself with. The edges of the backing paper to the adhesive vinyl are so sharp I’ve ended up with paper cuts that are so deep. The thumb is my most recent self-inflicted wound.

 

So what have you been up to? Anyone running Boston tomorrow?
Do you prefer running in the heat or in the cold? Signed up for any races?

Well hello there.

Been super busy working but I’m finally catching a breath and thought it would be a great time to tell you about yesterday. I ran the Fall Flat 5K trail race here in Staten Island and got to catch up with my good friend Gina. She and I ran this race last year. I blogged about it here.

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So before I tell you about yesterday’s race let me first admit something that I haven’t told anyone yet. I had a bit of a freak out a week before the race. I woke up limping. Not kidding! It’s really pretty ridiculous. I feel like I’ve been a broken record the entire year! My “good” foot was hurting. I realized that it was the first week I’d run 3 times in a single week since the original toe injury and I also went to yoga twice and I probably just overdid it. I forget sometimes that for months that foot worked about 150% every single day. Every single downward dog I put more weight on that foot because I was still giving my bad foot a break. Needless to say I kept this to myself and decided to take an entire week off to see how things would go. The limp went away after about 2 days and since then I’ve been doing much better. I’ve been icing and stretching and while the foot is achy today I don’t think this is anything more than some mild tendinitis. 2017 has been rough. Clearly my body is letting me know that I need to take even smaller baby steps with this whole return to running. So I’m going to keep to only 1 or 2 runs of 3ish miles a week for the rest of the year. If there’s one thing I can do next year to help the situation it will be to start incorporating more strength work into my DAILY routine. I’m not going to allow myself to train for anything more than 5k until I feel more secure physically. Between the toe injury X2, the back spasms, the knee strain in my sleep, hurting the arch of my foot during physical therapy….am I missing anything? Yeah, I don’t want to have to utter a single word about injury in 2018! Ok, enough about that. Now on to my recap…

 

Fall Flat 5K Trail Race Recap:

The race starts at 10am at a park that’s only about 15 minutes from my house. Bib/shirt pickup opens at 9am. I like to get  there right at 9am to park at the entrance right nearby. There’s a second parking area but you have to walk a bit. Because this race is held by the same organization that runs the night hikes that I go on, I was able to see a few friendly faces.

I grabbed my cute shirt and walked back to the car to toss it in.

Fall Flat 5k 2017

Fall Flat 5k 2017

And then of course my running buddy Gina arrived. She and I met back in the mid 90’s! We worked together. We’ve stayed friends ever since. Gina is a Crossfit/Spartan Race kinda girl but every so often she likes to do a trail or road 5k.

I had no time goals in mind. Gina was hoping to shave a few minutes of last years time so I basically followed her lead. The course was changed up a bit this year which was nice. The only part of the course that overlaps puts you going in the reverse direction so at least you never feel like it’s Groundhog’s day 🙂 I totally forgot to turn my Garmin on but I sort of knew when we hit the first mile just by how I felt. I said that to Gina who looked down at her watch and confirmed we were at 1.03. I’m fairly predictable 🙂

photo courtesy of Run & Shoot Photo

photo courtesy of Run & Shoot Photography

We ended up finishing in 36:28 which was 2:30 faster than last year! Mission accomplished!

I love this race for so many reasons. It’s a local race but it’s one of the more popular events (size-wise) that this organization (The Greenbelt Conservancy) runs. There were about 300 runners (and walkers) of all ages and paces. It’s so nice to recognize so many familiar faces and to see the local running family. There are lots of local photographers capturing the event and they post their pics on Facebook which is such a lovely bonus.

©run shoot photo

photo courtesty of run shoot photo

It’s an event that truly appeals to all levels of fitness. The main goals are that everyone enjoy the trails that are maintained by The Greenbelt Conservancy and that the event raises some money to help ensure the trails can continue to be maintained. Win win! And the price is right. I think I paid $25. But even on race day the registration is only a few dollars more.

Photo courtesy of Run and Shoot Photographu

Photo courtesy of Run and Shoot Photography

My foot felt fine the entire run. It was definitely achy all day afterward. I iced it on and off and even wore compression socks. Today it’s feeling improved. I’m not freaking out anymore. I think with the continued TLC and the lower mileage I’ll be fine. Dear Santa: For Christmas I’d like to be free of injury next year mmmkay?

Do you run on trails?

Do you run local races?

Have I asked these questions before because I feel like I have 🙂

Happy Monday!

Hope everyone enjoyed their weekend. I ran the Cold Feat 10k trail run on Saturday and had a great time. 16826059_10212046217612429_5317901885331885100_oIt was more like a hike vs a run as I was still getting over the flu and just didn’t have the energy to move very fast, especially up all the hills. But eventually I made it to the finish line so I accomplished my goal!16649302_10212045563356073_7268340395980016362_n

After hiking these trails in the dark for the last 6 weeks it was fun to get re-acquainted with them during the day! I’m grateful for any time I can spend outdoors in the woods.

All you have to remember is to follow the pink ribbons and the arrows

All you have to remember is to follow the pink ribbons and the arrows

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This is one of the shorter hills!

This is one of the shorter hills!

16831060_10212045565076116_2305164421416021485_nThe weather warmed up into the low 50s by the end of the race which was just lovely. And I’m loving my swag! I’ve never owned a hat with a pom-pom on the top. Isn’t that crazy?16807342_10212045562916062_3733680363259412042_n

Meanwhile Winter is on hiatus for a while. It’s been in the 60s! What?! I hope we get some cold weather and snow again before Spring officially arrives in a month.

I had a really great run today…
IMG_9457I am starting out the week with my official half-marathon training schedule. Ironically after declaring that I wasn’t concerned about my pace or finish times at all for this training cycle, I just had such a zippy and fairly effortless first run. I chose the multi-use path by the beach today because it’s flat and I want to ensure I am kind to my hamstrings so I can make it through all the miles over the next 3 months. IMG_9463

I’m planning on 2 shorter weekday runs each week of 3-5 miles and flat when I can control it. And then I’ll build up my long runs each weekend starting with a 6-8 miler this coming weekend. Plus I’ll keep up with those weekly Wednesday night hikes and I’ll be doing lots of strengthening and stretching of the glutes/hammies/core/hips!!

Well, I’m off to do some glamorous stuff like laundry and paying bills. Catch ya later!

Happy Monday Internet friends!

It seems I’ve turned into a once-a-week blogger and I hope you’re ok with that. I just can’t seem to find the time (to check in more frequently). I’ve also become a once-a-weeker in running and hiking too. I’m trying to fix my hamstring (and now hip!) issues by easing up on anything too strenuous more than once or twice a week and adding in 2 scheduled rehab days of lots of hip and glute strengthening exercise and foam rolling until my fascia is happy. I’m currently trying to rehab on my own but I might be making an appointment to see a sports injury doc soon if I can’t make progress.

A much less strenous activity last week was taking the Staten Island Ferry into the city last Tuesday to meet some former coworkers for some much needed cocktails and conversation. The view of the NYC skyline really never gets old….especially in the early evening when the sun has just set.

It was FREEZING on the outer deck but I couldn't take the picture through a dirty window :)

It was FREEZING on the outer deck but I couldn’t take the picture through a dirty window now could I? 🙂

So these night hikes have led to meeting some new people who like running on the trails as well as hiking. Yesterday morning I met up with a couple of them for 4.25 miles. And, my next run will be next Saturday so that works out! IMG_9092

I love trails that are just named by colors. Easy to remember

I love trails that are just named by colors. Easy to remember

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when you discover a random chimney ruin in the woods you take a picture in front of it

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Mr. SOTSS and I had some fun with his girls this weekend doing some “candy chemistry”. We watched what happened when you drop Mentos candy into a bottle of diet cola.

Oh and I signed up for another race…. I’ll be running the Spring Lake 5 miler Memorial Day weekend. FullSizeRender 7After spectating in 2014 and 2015, I ran it last year. It was hot! Anyway, I’m excited to run again and have some yummy brunch after with friends.

Duncan and I did plenty of exploring in the woods last week too.

So you hike these trails in the dark ma? How can you see any squirrels?

So you hike these trails in the dark ma? How can you see any squirrels?

And I got a bee in my bonnet to do my hair straight this weekend. But only for a day.IMG_9078

And just a couple of cute dog pics to share before I sign off:

cute dog on couch #1

cute dog on couch #1

cute dog on couch #2

cute dog on couch #2

Tell me what’s new in your life. Any good news to share?