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.


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


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

FullSizeRender 8

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


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?

First race of 2017:

This past Saturday I ran the most dreamy of logistical races. With a 10am start time for the Resolution Run, a local 4 mile trail race, I left my house at 9:25am, was parked at the race at 9:35am, got my number and shirt by 9:40am and sat in my car until 9:55am when I decided to join the rest of the crowd (about 75-80 runners total) at the start.

easy peasy in the logistics category!

easy peasy in the logistics category!

A little about the course…Miles 1 and 4 were in Bloomingdale Park, the park I take Duncan to almost daily.

Here's the same spot in the race....

Here’s the same spot in the race….

and 2 days before with Duncan

and 2 days before with Duncan

These miles weren’t technical, they were either on the dirt paths or paved paths and I could keep my pace similar to road miles. Miles 2 and 3 were loops in the woods next to the park, so being aware of tree roots, and other potential hazards under the leaves meant slowing down the pace a bit.

crossing over a little stream

crossing over a little stream

pink ribbons marked the course

pink ribbons marked the course

I really love a good local race.

finish line goodies

finish line goodies

Yes, it’s weird to fork over $35 to run on the same paths I can run for free any day that I wanted but I like the medal a whole bunch and I think there’s something about being part of an organized even that pushes me to work harder than if I was just on my own. Also, I feed off being around people with the same passion as me. This race was the first in a series of 3. The medals are made to interlock and create one big medal so that really incentivizes me to run the other 2….both of which are the same 10 min drive from my house.

first race of 2017

Love the medal!

There’s a 5k next month and a 10k in April. Also, part of the proceeds of this race will support a local volunteer CERT (community emergency response team) organization. :)

OK, now on to my chronic hamstring pain situation. Not that I’m looking for advice, I just feel like venting but I wouldn’t refuse the advice :)

Hamstring pain situation:

So it started a few months ago….maybe September or October. Initially it was just that “sticky” tightness on the backs of my thighs right in the middle of my hamstring. Then I noticed especially in November during my road trip to North Carolina how painful it was to sit for long periods of time and that the pain had moved up more to the top of the hammy and where it attaches to the sit bones. I also started to get some pain in the groin. All mostly dull, achy pain. Running or even walking uphill and sitting happen to be the two things that irritate them the most.

After basically not running for 3 weeks (aside from my leisurely holiday run on New Year’s Eve) I really wasn’t feeling much relief. I noticed that all the hill climbing during my weekly night hikes were aggravating everything too. Well, after Saturday’s race the pain intensified. So running is still the main source of irritation for sure.

I’ve been researching and think it might be one of the following 2 things: High Hamstring Tendinopathy or possibly trigger point issue associated with my adductor magnus muscle.

Either way, it’s a surefire sign I need to strengthen my glutes and hips! When will I get it through my brain that I need to strength train to prevent injury? I’m a glutton for punishment for sure.

So that’s that. I spent the rest of the weekend with Mr. SOTSS. We saw Patriots Day yesterday and allowed ourselves a little flexibility in our diet for some popcorn.

Patriots Day and Popcorn

Patriots Day and Popcorn

The movie was really good but left me feeling such sadness all over again as I thought about the Boston Marathon bombings. I remember that afternoon so vividly. I was at my desk at work watching on my computer and tracking my friend Carey. She was a few miles from the finish and my boss and I went out to the ice cream truck quickly for an ice cream cone. As we were walking back into the office a co-worker came running up to me to say there was a bomb that exploded at the finish. My heart sank! I knew Carey was so close. She was probably still about a mile or so away from the finish when they stopped her and said the race was over. She didn’t know why at first. Once I realized she was safe I just refreshed CNN constantly for the rest of the day and the next few days too as I watched everything unfold. It is beyond my comprehension how anyone could cause such harm to innocent people. I had nightmares last night. :(

Yesterday was a day of simple pleasures. We started with a 2 mile walk, letting the dogs frolic for a bit and then we just ran some errands and cooked healthy meals for the week. We walked the dogs again at night and Mr. SOTSS caught some of the Playoffs Football action too.doggies

The face he gave when I asked what Chester had in his mouth :) "Um, you don't want to know"

The face he gave when I asked what Chester had in his mouth :) “Um, you don’t want to know”

Do you like going to the movies? 

What’s your favorite movie snack?

What are your favorite weekend simple pleasures?