Better than expected

Today was impressively cold and windy. I was dreading running outside. I planned on going to the gym to run on the treadmill but I changed my mind at the last minute. My heart rate was elevated and I slept horribly so I knew my long run was out of the question. I decided to just run a mile and to run from home to save some time. The cooler temps really kept my heart rate lower than I expected and the wind wasn’t slowing me down too much. I ran a half mile, stopped for some pull-ups and dips, and decided to keep going. I ran 1.5 miles into the 25 mph wind before I decided to turn around. The return trip was much more enjoyable with the wind at my back. I stopped for another set of pull-ups and dips as well as a flip before heading home. The playground was soaked from the storms that went through overnight and I had fun trying to avoid the puddles in the wood chips. The 3 mile run was a pleasant surprise. I’m glad I decided to run outside instead of inside!

Rest

I have felt very busy and overwhelmed by life lately. However, I have managed to keep the streak alive with a mile run between school and a doctor’s appointment for my son yesterday and a mile run between school and driving to spend time with my older boys and husband today. I did take some time for a leisurely walk tonight. The temperature was absolutely perfect. It was dark so I took my headlamp. I stopped by the park behind the neighborhood elementary school to do a few pull-ups and dips. I also did a flip over one of the bars. I like to keep my vestibular system on it’s toes. It felt goofy and freeing. I think I’ll be doing that more often! I’m looking forward to having time for a couple of longer runs this weekend.

Too much

I ran too far today. It was just so nice out and the streets were so quiet. I ran to a local park south of our new townhouse and there weren’t any good pull-up bars so I decided to run to the park a couple of miles west of our house and then go through my sisters’ neighborhood before stopping at the park behind the elementary school near our townhouse to do a 3rd set of pull-ups. By the last mile, my heart rate was jumping into the 150s almost as soon as I shuffled past a walk. I’m still sick and it was just too much. I went 5 miles total. I really enjoyed the route and the time outside though. I’m sure I’ll do that route again when I’m feeling better. I will probably need to take it easy tomorrow to undo what I overdid today.

Last person sprints

Yesterday at practice we did what is commonly called an “Indian run” but I really felt uncomfortable with the name. I did’t really know the origin of the term but I did some digging online and it sounds like it’s a reference to a type traditional of Native American dancing. The article I read suggested we call it “last man sprints”, which I’m deciding to change to last person sprints. Regardless of the title, we had a great time! My daughter, who is in 8th grade, joined us since her middle school team had the night off. We ran 2 miles total and averaged a great pace for our newbies. We sang songs, did a few marching cadence calls (our steps were way off from each other so that one wasn’t working as well), and just generally had fun. I love being able to help these kids have positive running experiences. Isn’t this what all coaches should be helping their athletes do at some level? Reminding the athletes why they love their sport and how to enjoy life while they improve their skills. That practice will go down in my memory as a highlight for sure. This morning I took some time to stretch up the wall and then ran an easy 3 miles. I did a few pull-ups at the elementary school on my way out and back. It was a great run!

Exploring

This morning I continued exploring the new neighborhood that I will live in on occasional weekends but that my husband and older boys will call home for now.  I jogged to the boys’ school again to make sure my distance estimates were correct from yesterday.  I was pretty close.  Then, I jogged to the park behind the nearby elementary school to do some pull-ups.  After that, I jogged toward the neighborhood where my sisters live to see if I could find a path between our neighborhood and theirs without too much traffic.  I did find a path but it was less direct than I had hoped.  I do think the longer, less busy path will be great on bikes though.  I am really excited to be so close to my family.  Soon.  But, for today, I ran a little over 4 miles.  I also got to take my boys clothes shopping before I left town.  It was a gift.  They won’t always want me or need me there for these moments.  Before I left, one of my boys said with a bit of sadness, “Oh ya, you’re leaving.”, which somehow simultaneously made my heart happy and sad.  I didn’t want to go.  I do need to be back here to support my daughter, fulfill my commitment to my teaching job, and get our house ready to list on the market.  But, none of that makes it easy.  I won’t get to see my daughter until Thursday and the house seems too big and too lonely.  I’m glad I have my youngest boy here with me although he is struggling to make sense of all of the changes too.  Life is rarely simple or easy.  In other news, I really hope it isn’t cloudy tomorrow.  There is a lot of hype around this eclipse and as a science teacher, it has the potential to make my day.  We have our first cross country meet tomorrow too.  I also hope I remember to run at some point.  It is going to be a really busy day.

Unfortunate restroom incident

I intended my first adventure off my Whole30 to be red wine. Then, my mom made her famous brownies. They were absolutely delicious. It didn’t surprise me at all when I had to stop during my run to use the restroom this morning. What did surprise me was the unfortunate series of events that occurred once I got to the restroom. There is a public access point for the beach about a mile from our beach house that has a nice indoor toilet. I was sweating by the time I got to the restroom. I barely made it. I didn’t even take time to lock the door on the single use room. The park is rarely populated, especially that early in the day. As I prepared to hover over the throne, I noticed a used feminine product was sitting in the bottom of the toilet. I quickly hit the flush lever and continued to prep for the emergency evacuation. As I looked down, the water just kept rising. I started fearing overflow and subsequent contact with blood borne pathogens. I ended up plunging to get the water to recede. As I was plunging with my shorts around my ankles, I heard footsteps on the deck outside the restroom. I quickly shuffled to the door and wrestled the lock into place. It was rediculously dramatic. I got the clog moved, finished what I came to do, and thanked the restroom gods for three distinct gifts. 1. The plunger. 2. That the water didn’t overflow. 3. Running water with hand soap. It was one of those experiences that made me wish I had just ducked behind some shrubbery. Luckily, it was toward the end of my workout. I had run to a neighborhood where my aunt and uncle have a condo so I could do my legs and back workout and use the monkey bars there for my pull-ups. I ran about 4.5 miles total. It wasn’t a bad workout overall. Just a bad restroom experience. Even after all of that, I ate another brownie after lunch today. Maybe I’ll just ensure I have some tissues with me on my run tomorrow. Before all the drama, I got this pic of the sun rising over the bay.

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Enjoying every last minute

I really do love the Phoenix area. The weather, the wildlife, the plant life, the scenery- it all seems magical to me. The only thing missing from the valley for me is my family. For now, I will treasure the time I have there and return to the Midwest and enjoy the time I have with my family. On Saturday, my husband wanted the opportunity to go on a trail run at a park near where we used to live. Since he had watched our youngest every morning while I ran or hiked, I knew I needed to give him that time. However, I really didn’t enjoy the mile and a half on the treadmill before sunrise. I took one for the team. Today, I really wanted to do a long run to enjoy the scenery fully on our last morning in Phoenix. I was out late picking up my older boys from a friend’s house last night so I worried that I would be too tired to get up and run before it was time to pack up and leave. My early morning wake-up ritual didn’t fail me. I was up around 5:30am. I quickly got ready and hit the trail outside the hotel. I started by running to the park to do a set of pull-ups and then did both loops on the map provided by the hotel. I added an extra 0.4 miles to get a full 7 miles and found out that the trail actually continues in both directions in the city so maybe I’ll be able to explore further next time we are in the area. Luckily, it was overcast, which kept the temps in the 80’s even though it added to the humidity. I had forgotten my handheld water bottle at home so I just ran with my glass Lifefactory water bottle because I didn’t want to risk dehydration. The scenery didn’t disappoint. The McDowells were visible to my left.

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And Camelback was visible to my right.

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I enjoyed every minute of the run even though I was completely soaked with sweat by the time I got back to the hotel. I did stop at the park on the way back for a second set of pull-ups. My husband was a rockstar getting the kids up, taking them down to breakfast, and packing the van so I could do my long run. It was a great way to prepare for a long day of driving although I’ve been way too hungry. Speaking of food, I did stick to the Whole30 for the majority of the trip. I was really proud of myself! I did make a conscious choice to eat a flourless chocolate cake my son had gotten at a coffeehouse but didn’t eat. It was absolutely amazing. I told myself that I would take a bite and be done if it wasn’t absolutely amazing. But it was so I ate it and enjoyed every single bite. Then I got right back on track. I feel like I get more balanced with my eating every round I complete. Overall, I would call this trip a fantastic success! Until next time, Phoenix!