Training Log 9.7.15-9.13.15

Happy Monday–and Happy Boston Registration Week! I hope you all had a fabulous weekend. Ours was a lot of fun, and per usual, I’m sad to see it end.

It’s race week! It’s hard to believe I’m running a half-marathon this Saturday. It doesn’t feel like I should be ready for it. I’ll talk more about my goals for Saturday later this week, but I’m trying to just take it easy and not overly stress myself out about it.

I ended up “tapering” a lot more than I anticipated, which I guess is a good things. My legs felt pretty rough towards the end of the week, so I’m hoping to do some yoga this week to make sure everything is nice and stretched out before the race.

Monday – off

Driving back from Colorado.

Tuesday – 5 miles

I’ve been having a really tough time getting myself up and out of bed before 6 most mornings. Typically, that doesn’t leave me with much time to run in the mornings. Tuesday, I got up and decided to hell with it, and leashed up Rudy and we went out for two easy miles. After work and before class, I headed out for another three. I tried to run a little fast, and nailed a 7:06 as my last mile!!! That felt really, really good.

Wednesday – 4 miles

After work, I set off for four easy miles. This wasn’t anything spectacular, just some easy miles.

Thursday – 3 miles

I got up and ran early in the morning, but it wasn’t stellar by any means. My legs were feeling pretty tired. Kept it easy and short.

Friday – Strength workout

Alright, I’m just going to say it. I can’t do a strength day the day before a long run. I had a dentist appointment after work, which turned into 2 hours in the chair, and when I got home with a numb face, I just really didn’t want to run. So, I took Rudy for a walk and did a Deck of Cards workout instead.

Saturday – 6.5 miles

My last “long run” turned into “survive for at least six miles”. My legs were SHOT, it was hot out and I mentally didn’t want to be out there. My body was craving sleep after our pretty sleep-deprived weekend in Colorado, so I let myself sleep in on Saturday morning and then lazed around for a few hours. By the time I finally got myself out the door, it was almost noon and 80*.

summer long runI just wasn’t feeling it. My legs were pretty shot from the lunges and squats the day before, and the heat affected me pretty badly. I ran a hilly trail near the house, and it took everything I had to keep climbing up. I was trying to look at it from the perspective that I’ll be doing that a lot next weekend, and the start time isn’t until 9, so it’ll be warm. After getting home, I laid on the floor for a while before I was able to move again. 

Total miles: 18.5

Not at all what I was planning on for this week, but oh well. Sometimes that happens. The best thing to do–especially right before a race–is listen to your body and give it what it needs, and sometimes that’s a lot less milage than you would like!

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Training Log 8.24.15-8.30.15 + Catching Up

Hello hello!

Thank you all so much for your comments and encouragement on my last post! It’s definitely nice knowing I’m not the only one who felt lost and bounced around after graduation. I am VERY excited about starting this new chapter and pursuing this new goal. So much so, that I ended up going to the wrong class yesterday…

Ha! I thought the bio class I was taking was a Monday-Wednesday class, so I showed up yesterday ready to go. Turns out it’s a Tuesday-Thursday…guess I was just overly excited to get back into the swing of things!

I hope to keep blogging, and continue documenting this journey. I’m feeling pretty committed to running the full marathon, as planned in February, and it’ll be interesting how that goes with working and going to school. I’m anticipating a lot of coffee is in my future!

This past weekend was my birthday and a dear friend gifted Lauren Fleshman’s “Believe” journal to me, and I LOVE it. It’s got so many amazing tidbits, and it’s been really fun to handwrite all my runs and workouts again. I’ve only done it for a week (obviously, since I just got it), but I’m loving the documenting goals for the week and seeing how they’re met. I have a feeling it’ll get more and more handy the crazier things get!

So let’s get to last week’s workouts!

Monday – 3 easy miles w/ Rudy

I had run 10 miles the day before, so I wanted to just do a real easy shake out run. I knew if I took Rudy with me, I wouldn’t been tempted to run too quickly, so we did a nice and easy 3 miles after work. He did a lot of sniffing, I did a lot of stretching.

Tuesday – Cardio Barre Fusion workout- 60 min

I’ve been really lackluster in my strength training lately, so this was my attempt at getting back on the horse. And man! I forgot how great of a workout barre is. My quads were screaming by the end of it.

Wednesday – 6 miles, 4 solo, 2 w/Rudy

This was my first sub-8 min run in a loooooooong time. The first four miles I took by myself, and decided to run at a “comfortably uncomfortable” pace. I averaged 7:57/mile by the time I made it back home, and I was surprised by how well my body did it. I laced Rudy up and we set off for our normal hilly mile route. Our mile up the hill was about an 8:30, and we managed a 7:30 on our way back down. Getting these legs used to running fast again!

  
Thursday – 5 recovery miles

I was surprised by how springy my legs felt after my run on Wednesday. I purposely took it pretty slow, about 8:45’s and enjoyed the amazing weather.

  
Friday – 4 miles w/ Rudy

I’ve been loving taking Rudy with me on my runs lately. We did 4 easy miles together on Friday. A storm was rolling in, so I took him right when I got off work at around 2. By the end of it, the cloud cover we had was rolling out, and it got a little too warm out for him. But, he did great and came home and collapsed happily for the evening.

Saturday – 10 miles

I wanted to do 12 miles on Saturday, but I knew really quickly that wasn’t going to happen. Before I even left the house, I could tell my calves were sore and tired and this was going to be a struggle. By the time I made it to the trail head, it was 8:30 and HOT. This was not a good run. I bargained with myself the entire time. I tried to justify running 9 miles, then 8 miles and even 6 miles. I finally told myself to hit 10, make it to the double digits and save the 12 miler for next week in Colorado.

This was mostly a 10 mile hike with some running spurts thrown in there–I’m not going to lie. The trail was rough and much more technical than I was expecting and I’m just glad I managed to push myself through the 10 miles.

When I got home, Jeff suggested going to see the Man From U. N. C. L. E. And it was fantastic! I highly recommend it!

Sunday – 1.25 mile walk with the boys. Lots of wine. 

Sunday was my birthday, so after breakfast we went for a birthday walk and then headed down to Cottonwood for some wine tasting. If you’re ever in the area, I highly suggest hitting up Alcantara Vineyards. It’s beautiful and they have great wine. 

   
 
It was a great way to end the week and ring in 27! 

Total mileage: 28 

I seem to be stuck right under 30 miles. I’m not sure if that has to do with the fact I haven’t given myself a rest week or what, but it’s been a struggle. I’m hoping to finally nail that 30 mile week this week! 

Training Catch Up

Well hello there!

Sorry for playing quite the disappearing act the last few weeks. Things have been a bit crazy, and it was all I could do to keep running–writing about the running I was doing just kind of fell to the wayside.

I mentioned last week that I’m working on a post about the said craziness–and I am. It’s just not what I want it to be yet, and since this is near and dear to me, I want to make sure it’s great. Sorry for the cliff hanger, I promise to share it soon!

I’m not going to do a traditional training log post for either of these past two weeks. I typically do each post based on random notes, my garmin data and my memory, and I just can’t remember two weeks ago. I ran quite a bit of those runs naked, as well as this week, so my memory on specific runs is a bit foggy.

My mileage has sat nicely at 27.5 miles for the last two weeks. I actually think it’s kind of funny that it was exactly that two weeks in a row…but that’s how it played out. My legs were really tired at the beginning of this week, so I took it pretty easy, but wanted to make sure I hit my 10 mile long run over the weekend. The week before I had a drastic jump in mileage, so it makes sense my legs would be feeling that.

Midweek runs have been feeling okay lately. I definitely feel better in the mornings than I do the afternoon. It’s been hard getting up early lately. It’s dark again when I wake up and it’s getting much cooler. I’ve been opting to sleep and run after work, but my legs always feel dead and heavy after work. On the plus side, I’ve found a perfect 5.5 mile loop that includes a great number of climbs–both of the “oh man this is a climb” and rolling hill variety–that I won’t be able to run for much longer so I’m taking full advantage of it now. The main street the route is on doesn’t have street lamps, and then part of it is on trail, so once the sun stops coming up around the 5:20ish time, this route will probably be a no no.

hilly route

First time running said hilly route.

Speed work? No, not yet. Not formally anyway. I did have a 4 mile run this past Friday that was pretty hilly that I managed to do at a 8:10 pace. My speed is definitely coming back, and I hope to start incorporating some speed work in soon.

Long runs. My 9 miler last week was tough. My legs were heavy and didn’t want to move from the very beginning. And when you feel like crap at the beginning, there’s just no way to salvage that run. It was a mental battle from the get-go and I let it beat me. My brother was in town visiting and he wanted to go hiking after my run, so I didn’t want to do any gnarly trail climbs. I picked a nice, easy, flat run and it was really hard! Afterwards, my brother and I went and hiked part of the trail I’ll be racing in October….let’s just say THAT’LL be a doozy.

me and spence

At the top. It’s quite the view up there!

Yesterday, I ran my 10 miler for the week. It was the complete opposite of my 10 miler. It was fun, my legs felt great and I enjoyed some epically great single track. I had some major climbs that made my legs feel like jello, but I’ve got some major climbs in my next two races, so it’s good practice.

The next two weeks I’ll be trying to run 12 milers before tapering before this half marathon. I cannot believe it’s in 3 weeks! Where did the summer go?

Training Log 8.3.15-8.9-15

Hey guys! Sorry this has taken me so long to get up–I know you’re all anxious to read about my running this week 😉 Things have been a little crazy in these parts the last week or so! And it seems like it’s just going to stay that way. In the meantime, I’m trying to get in as many great workouts as possible.

The theme of this week was: hills. I didn’t run as many miles this week, but every time I threw on my running shoes, I aimed to run UP as much as possible. I haven’t been doing too much in terms of speed work, so I’m hoping that the hill training I’m giving myself now, will translate itself when I start to incorporate speed again. With my endurance finally feeling like it’s getting on board, I’m hoping to start running fast again soon!

Monday – 3 miles

It was HOT out there! Major sweatfest. I only managed to hang on for three miles, but I was running up for the majority of it, so I felt like it evened out pretty well.

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Tuesday – 4 morning miles

I love morning miles. When I’m able to get my butt up and out of bed, it really is my favorite time to run.

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Plus, I found a new trail! I was running the same hilly route as I had run the day before, but wanted kept going up the hill, rather than turning off onto another road that is equally as hilly. I was running along and saw a trail going off to the side, so I popped on over and tried it out. I was already at about 1.75, so I didn’t go very far on it, but I made a mental note to try it again later that week.

Wednesday – 3 treadmill miles

Oh man, I was not feeling it Wednesday. Not at all. It was hot and smokey out and I did not want to be running. I got on the treadmill for a few miles and called it a day.

Thursday – Rest

Friday – 5 miles

When I got off work on Friday, it had started to rain and a big storm was moving in. I waited a little while to see if it would settle down out there. There was a break in the storm, so I headed straight out. I headed back to that trail I had found on Tuesday and had a blast exploring. By the time I hit about mile 2.5 it had started to rain hard and I was hearing rumblings of thunder in the distance, but not before I climbed a hill and got one heck of a view!

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I turned around and started a mad dash back to the house. When I was about a mile away the lightening was right on top of me and it was POURING. The kind of pouring that the rain drops actually hurt. I called Jeff and was like “Come get meeee!” Which he did. Because he’s the best. I finished my last mile on the treadmill when we got home.

Saturday – 6.5 miles

I had planned on running part of the Soulstice Trail Run course, but I got lost and couldn’t find the trailhead. Rather than spend the entire morning looking for it, I found a different trail head, parked the car and headed out. It wasn’t nearly as scary elevation-wise as my original plan, but I figured I’d continue to take it easy and maintain my same mileage plan. The storm the night before had made everything SO GREEN and clouds were lingering over the mountains.

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It was absolutely gorgeous and a ton of fun!

Total miles: 21.5 miles

It was a good week. My mileage wasn’t terribly lower than it has been, but I took it easier and focused more on the type of runs I wanted to do. They weren’t fast, but they got my legs used to running up and up. That’s kind of my game plan for the next few weeks, except for adding in more mileage!

Training Log 7.27.15-8.2.15 + Short July Review

Hello! Happy AUGUST! I always love August. It’s my birthday month (woohoo!) and it always seems like August is your last chance scramble to enjoy all the bits of summer you can before fall begins.

While training for the Phoenix Marathon, I used to do monthly recaps where I’d review what went right, and what went wrong for the month. I found it a really useful tool to look at everything by the numbers and try to identify areas where I could improve. I’d like to eventually bring that back into the posting rotation, but since I haven’t been doing any stellar months since February (yikes!), I haven’t posted one. Today at the end of this post, I’ll do a quick recap of how July went for me. In the meantime, let’s get crackin!

I didn’t run with my Garmin much this week, as I wanted to focus on how I felt, rather than my pace. So for a lot of these runs, I went on trails or routes where I knew mile markers so I could turn around when I wanted to. It seemed to work pretty well for me, so it’s something I may incorporate on rest weeks from here on out.

Monday – 4 mile accidental progression run

This was completely accidental and nothing stellar.  I set out for my run on Monday after work on one of my favorite urban trails. Since I didn’t know what I wanted out of this week, go hard or step back a bit, I decided to just run and see how my legs were doing, rather than force myself up hills repeatedly. I started out and my first mile clocked in at around a 9 min/mile pace. I cursed myself for wearing my Garmin and tried not to focus on the pace, but focus on my breathing and how my legs felt. I was enjoying the trail and the beautiful day and tried with every ounce of me to not look at my watch. My next mile beeped at 8:30, the third at 8:15 and my fourth at 8:05. I felt tired by the end, but not spent. Towards the the third mile I realized that I was negative splitting, so I pushed myself towards the end to hit under the 8:15, and felt really good. It wasn’t terribly hard maintaining that pace, so I’m happy to actually have proof that as my endurance comes back, my speed should as well!

Tuesday – 1 mile + Deck of cards workout

It was so hot on Tuesday after work. I got home and got ready to go run. I stepped outside and ran about 0.06 of a mile and turned around. It was so hot and my legs felt so heavy and dead. I figured that maybe running on the treadmill would be a better option. I got on the treadmill and got through a mile before my knee started to hurt. I really needed new shoes and I figured that had to be the reason. So, I hopped off and decided to make the day a strength day instead. Deck of cards workout (I’m really loving this workout. Challenging and fast and you can customize it for whatever you want to focus on!): Squats, donkey kicks, push ups and sit ups.

Wednesday – 4 miles total, 2 miles in morning, 2 in the afternoon

I had set my alarm to get up and run early before work, but when 5am came around, I opted for more sleep instead. I got up at 6 and realized I had some time since our lunches were already made (thanks leftovers!), so I leashed Rudy up and we went on a quick 2 mile run.

Rudy

When I got home from work, I laced up again and ran another two to bring my daily total to 4. Not quite the double I’d like to be doing, but it was kind of nice to split it up throughout the day.

Thursday – 5 miles

I already wrote about the magic that was this run. 5 miles at about an 8:30 pace.

Friday – 3 easy miles

I got my new shoes Friday!

Aren't they pretty? Brooks, you know how to make a good shoe!

Aren’t they pretty? Brooks, you know how to make a good shoe!

I decided to branch out from my Adrenalines and try out the Ravennas. They’re definitely different, but I like them a lot so far. I’ll do a full review after I have a shot to run in them a few more times.

I took Rudy with me initially, but the boy did not want to run that day. He wanted to sniff all the things. So, I did a mile with him, dropped him off and home and then did another easy 2 miles on my own.

Saturday – Long run, 8.5 miles total

I woke up early on Saturday in order to get my 9 miles in. We had plans to head down to Phoenix that morning to meet up with my folks + little brother who were driving through on their way to Tucson (my bro just moved there to start school! Wooohooo for having him so close!). When I was on mile 2, my mom texted me to let me know that they left an hour earlier so they’d be in Phoenix an hour earlier, sooo I had to cut my run short. I got through 7.5 miles and then we got on the road. I figured I’d finish the last two when we got home with Rudy. Well, nachos and 2 beers happened at lunch and when we got home, I wasn’t feeling super motivated to run. But, I laced up and leashed up Rudy and gave it a shot anyway. We made it a whole half a mile before I decided there was just no way. My legs felt heavy and gross and it was hot out which made me feel even worse. So, we did a mile total and then I went home, had a snack and watched “The Astronaut Wives Club” and napped. It was worth it.

Total miles: 25.5

I’m really happy with how this week went! Even though I didn’t get my goal mileage for my long run, I got close and that’s good enough. My weekly mileage is still increasing steadily and I feel really, really good. Hoping to get back into the 30’s in the next couple of weeks!

July mileage total: 82 miles

I’m pretty happy with getting 80  miles in during July. It makes me wanting to hit 100 in August seem more realistic. I finally feel like I’m getting my mojo back and that makes me really excited to keep running. We’ll see how the next few weeks go in terms of training for the half, but I’m keep an open mind about running the 10k, too. I want to be as healthy and happy (mentally AND physically) as I can be, and I want to run to have fun. So, we’ll see how August goes. July was a great month for me, it started rough in Houston, but I was able to pull together a few really solid training weeks in the last 3 weeks. I’m finally feeling good and excited and hope to keep the momentum going into August!

Have a great Monday everyone and a stellar week!

Training Log 7.20.15-7.26.15

Hey everyone! I’m back after an insanely busy week and emotional weekend. We lost a good friend yesterday. Our friend had to put his dog down after an unfortunate accident and it was absolutely heartbreaking. He was a joy and an absolute love and will be greatly missed.

Hug your pet a little tighter for me today!

Anyway, here’s this week’s workouts:

*Quick note: I won’t be incorporating mile paces or splits for the time being. This weekend on my long run, I was running a pretty challenging loop and found myself pushing myself to run times that, to be frank, I have no business running right now. I realized I’m putting quite a bit of pressure on myself to run hard trails fast, which doesn’t make any sense. So, I’m taking those off the table. Numbers will become important again soon in my training, but right now, I don’t want to focus on them. I want to focus on getting fit and my endurance back. 

Monday – 4 miles

I was planning on running hills per my Monday plans, but I ran up the hill once and threw a big ol’ NOPE at that.

So, instead, I looped around a did an easy four mile run.

Tuesday – 3.5 miles with Rudog

My last bit at work and my drive home was SUPER frustrating, so I got home and wasn’t planning on running since it was close to six already but J was like “erm…maybe you should.” Ha. So, I leashed up the dog and we went out for a few miles and felt a million times better.

Wednesday – 5.5 miles

I tried to do some kind of speed play on this run and surprise! Fell apart real fast. It was a wake up call that I’m not in the kind of shape to be running fast for very long. Then I ended up with a stomach ache and it was hot, etc. etc. This was just not my run, but I’m glad I pushed onwards.

Thursday – REST

My legs have really been feeling the increase in mileage, so I took the day off to rest.

Friday – 3 easy

I wanted to try to do a shake out run before my long run on Saturday. I ran a loop in a nearby neighborhood that had a park with a water fountain, since it was about 85* out when I went on my run.

Waterfountain

That’s some high quality H20

Glory to the Water Fountain Gods.

Saturday – 7ish long run

So, my original plan was to go run Soldier’s Trail + Highland’s Trail for a total of 9 miles. When I got to Ft. Tuthill, the place was packed and there was some kind of event going on. So, I turned around and was going to go back home to just run a random trail near the house, when I decided to run Mars Hill instead.

It’s a very, very tough run. The first 2.5 miles are all a steady climb, and then you don’t start to decline for about another mile (which is rolling hills). Then, once you get down the mesa, you’re running on more rolling hills until you get back to town.

MarsHill

My legs felt dead from the very first moment–my first mile was a 9 something. I’m trying to remember that I’m not going to be running trails like these fast–there’s just no way to do it. I’m still working on my endurance and there’s just no way to climb hundreds of feet at an 8 min mile–at least not for me.

It’s been a tough mental shift for me, especially when I have marathon training looming in the distance. I was being really tough on myself during this run when I finally stopped to think about it. Why was I pushing myself? Because I feel like I should be running X amount of miles in X amount of time? It doesn’t make sense. These fall races are supposed to be fun, and I haven’t been having much fun lately. So, I decided that I will continue to train and see where I am at the end of August. If I’m not feeling awesome about my fitness, I’ll drop from the half marathon to the 10k. There’s no shame in that. I’d much rather enjoy myself and get to the beginning on marathon training excited and ready to work then already exhausted.

So, there that is!

Today is again supposed to be hills, and instead I’m going to go for an easy run on one of my favorite trails. I may not even bring my Garmin with me!

What was your favorite run from last week? Share some run love!

Training Log 7.13.15-7.19.15

Hello! I’m sitting here Sunday night, not quite ready to say goodbye to the weekend. To say we had a good one would be an understatement. There were lots of trails (for both running and hiking), DIY house projects we’ve been talking about doing for ages, brownie-baking mishaps and brownie-baking successes, and wine. It was one of those weekends you need after a week of crazed vacation madness. It was great and I am not ready to go to work tomorrow.

What I am ready for, however, is training week #2. After feeling blah about my first week of training, I had a long run that helped me fall in love with this process all over again. It was on a killer trail and I enjoyed every minute of it. But, before I talk about that, let’s look at the rest of the week, too!

Monday – 4.5 miles, hill repeats

This was my first set of repeats that was merely to run up and up and up. Usually, my hill workouts include a shorter hill–something around the 0.10-0.15 of a mile mark and are generally pretty steep. I run it all out as many times as I can stomach. This time around, I wanted to get used to running up a lot further than I was used to, but to do it at a speed that was manageable.

hill repeats

I chose a hill that I HATE. It’s long. About 0.40 of a mile long. And it’s a steady, steady incline. it’s a hill that generally makes me feel like crap. I always have trouble with it and it makes me question the shape I’m in, REGARDLESS of the shape I’m in. So, I ran up it 5 times. I needed it for the workout, but also for the mental toughness. I needed to conquer that bastard. It was brutal, but I felt SO GOOD afterwards.

Tuesday – 3 recovery miles with Rudy

I decided to take the Ru-dog with me for an easy morning run. It was MY mistake to take him on a trail for our first run back at home. The dude was let loose at J’s parent’s huge backyard for a week, and allowed to chase all the squirrels he wanted. Let’s just say my arms hurt after this from pulling his leash so much. I cut it at 3 because I couldn’t handle it anymore! The good news was that he wanted to sniff at everything, so our pace was nice and slow.

Wednesday  –  5 miles, 8:08 avg

I had seen a trail on my warm up before my hills on Monday that I wanted to check out, so I went on it Wednesday after work. Turns out, it was just another way to get up to Buffalo Park. So, since I found myself there, I decided to turn the workout into some kind of speed work. I ran some fartleks: 30 sec hard x 30 sec rest for 3 miles. It was my first time doing any kind of speedwork since February and let me tell you…it was rough.

thatviewthough

But that view cannot be beat.

Thursday – Deck of cards workout x 2

I did the Deck of Card workout twice. Once focused on abs with the following : Sit ups, crunches, reverse crunches and leg drops (is that a real thing? I think I just made that name up). The second time around I did push-ups, tricep dips, squats and leg lifts. BRU.TAL.

Friday – 3 miles, 8:17 avg

Nothing remarkable. Just some easy miles after I got off work and before a storm hit. It was refreshing and joyful.

Saturday – Long run, 7 miles

THIS RUN WAS BEAUTIFUL #trailporn

long run 3

long run 2

long run 1

I had heard so many people tell tales of how amazing this trail was, and have been trying to get out there to run it for over a month now. I finally made it, and it did not disappoint. I was originally planning on doing about 8 miles, but found that the elevation changes–minor as they were (started at 8750 ft and went up to about 9k)–plus a harder week than I had run in a while had killed my legs. I decided to cut it down to 7 and work on building my mileage over the next few weeks.

I have a new favorite trail and I will be returning soon.

Sunday – 4 mile hike with my guys

We woke up to quite the gloomy day. It was overcast and we were threatened with rain all day. But, we had plans to hike and hike is what we did.

boys hiking

hiking

Anytime I get to spend on trails, especially with J, I’m not going to complain about.

Total miles: 22.5 

Pretty significant jump from last week (14 miles) and a solid first week back in training. I feel pretty good about it and am looking forward to continuing my momentum. I was having a tough time finding motivation earlier this week, but after that stellar run on Saturday, I remembered why I was out there doing this. Because I LOVE to do it! I love spending my weekend mornings out in the woods doing what I love. For the time being, my focus is on enjoying the trails I have access to. Come November, that’s going to change as I shift into marathon training and winter forces me back onto the roads. Until that happens, I’m going to enjoy my time exploring new areas and trails, and look at my upcoming races as opportunities to continue building my endurance and strength and enjoying time with others that love what I love to do too.

Thanks for your continued support and encouragement! You guys are the best and I so appreciate your presence on my little corner of the interwebs here.