Saturday, July 2, 2022

Heavy on the Pedals


It was a Heavy On The Pedals kind of week, and the timing was immaculate.

After all, my right hip has been in a funk recently and I have a couple of races coming up. Why not give the compromised body parts a rest and have a little more fun on the bike(s)? 

Besides, the bike therapy is three-fold: my endurance is enhanced, my legs are strengthened and the creaky joints get some recovery time. Honestly, it's a triple-win!

Read on for all the deets...

Friday, July 1, 2022

Taking a Chill, Having a Chai, Enjoying a Chat


Well, here we are again.

Another opportunity to chill out, over a chai (or any beverage of your choosing, hot or iced), and have some friendly chatter. 

Things have been rather low-key in some regards, but also crazy active in others. It is what it is, and I choose to just keep on keeping on. It's all good.

Monday, June 27, 2022

For the Love of My Shades


Did anyone catch the little known fact about yesterday, June 27th?

Well, it was National Sunglasses Day!

Personally, I think every day should be National Sunglasses Day, because our eyes need all the TLC we can give them. Also, let's not forget the fine art of wrinkle prevention. I mean, seriously, does anyone want to look older than what their birth certificate indicates?

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Grinding It Out


Let's just say it was a week filled with all kinds of grit and grinding.

We're talking random aches and pains, and an out-of-the-blue series of unfortunate events. As always, there's much to be said of having a positive attitude and a willingness to smile when things are sketchy. It is also most beneficial to embrace gratitude and celebrate one's blessings.

After all, our mindset is our own choosing, even when our circumstances are compromised.

Thursday, June 23, 2022

Some Summer Fun 'Fessions


All is fair in fun & 'fessions, right?

It's hard to believe Summer 2022 is (officially) a reality, and we're already facing another turn at the 'fessional. When they say time flies, they aren't kidding.

It's been an interesting few weeks since my last 'fession session. You know, life and all that. Of course, I've got plenty to say...but I'll limit it to just the top five 'fessions for now (you're welcome, LOL).

Monday, June 20, 2022

National Selfie Day! Let's Celebrate!


Did you know that June 21 is National Selfie Day?

Yes, you read that correctly...there actually is a day that celebrates people taking pics of themselves (and posting them for the world to see). 

Although I play the (shameless) selfie game, pretty much on the daily, I do have mixed feelings about it. Most of what we see on social media is "filtered" (literally and figuratively) to reflect what the selfie-poster wants us to see about them or the lifestyle they lead. In other words, you don't see very many real-life images of us in our less-than-desirable states (and I don't think that's all bad, LOL).

While we all have our own preferences on the selfies we share, I do get a lot of questions on subject matter and content. So, in celebration of this most auspicious day, I'll share a few tips and strategies I utilize...

Saturday, June 18, 2022

#Maintaining #NoComplaining


Back in maintenance mode, and things are feeling fine.

Admittedly, I love the excitement and anticipation of a big race dictating my summer running. That said, I gotta runfess, it's also nice not having to strategize (almost) every fitness endeavor I choose to do.  

Such was the case this week. I'm still embracing the low mileage gig (in terms of running), and I'm saddling-up the bike whenever the weather is favorable. And, I'm smiling as I do so. 

Monday, June 13, 2022

Summer '22: What's To Do?


The Summer of '22 is already (unofficially) underway...what's a fitness-minded gal to do?

I'm glad you asked! 

Myself, I don't plan to spend very much of my Summer '22 indoors, nor do I expect to be sitting (un)comfortably still.  With no major races happening until the Fall, though, I have ZERO plans of over-expending myself with lofty goals or intensity.

There are a few objectives I have, though, as we approach the first official day of Summer '22...

Saturday, June 11, 2022

Keeping it Low-Key


Things had been a little crazy of late, fitness-wise, and my body was ready for a well-deserved break.

So, how about a week of (somewhat) easy-peasy recovery?

While my recovery looks different from that of others (as it should...none of us have the exact same routine, nor do our bodies need the exact same recovery regimen), I could tell it was due time for a low-key week. I kept the running mileage ultra conservative, I scaled-back on the biking, and I even caught a few extra hours of snoozing (yes, me!).

Are you curious how that all played out?

Monday, June 6, 2022

DAM to DSM - 2022 race recap


Everyone's got a DAM favorite race, am I right?

Myself? It is DAM to DSM. I first ran this epic race in 2008. It sucked me into the world of distance running, and I have not looked back. In fact, I've returned every year since.

This past weekend, I earned my 15th D2D medal. There's the saying "Always earned, never given," and those words rang true to me, this year, on the 2022 D2D race course. 

Saturday, June 4, 2022

Riding the Stride


A lot can be said for the fine art of prepping for a big race.

There's the taper, but also the daily fitness "fixes" that we all know and love. Finding that perfect balance, which is an individual thing, is tricky. It's also well worth the trial and error in seeking it.

Thankfully, for me, I have my trusty bike(s) to keep me happy when I'm scaling back on other vices. It was an active week of tapering, so to speak. And a week of eager anticipation of a favorite race... 

Thursday, June 2, 2022

What's In My Cup?


 

I'm feeling the need for some coffee time and chatter. Anyone else?

You know, it's already that time of the month for gathering, coffee cups in hand, for some conversation. May seemed to fly by, in record time, and I'm hopeful it ((finally)) took the last of the winter-like temps with it. Don't worry, though, the wind still remains.

Anyways, grab your beverage of choice and let's get the party started...

Monday, May 30, 2022

Global Running Day - Let's Do This!


We are runners, and runners run.

We have the gear, and we have the gadgets. We even have our own special day, Global Running Day!

Since its inception in 2009 (when it was first called National Running Day), this special day is celebrated, annually, on the first Wednesday of June. In 2016, its name was officially changed to Global Running Day (source). 

Shall we celebrate, on Wednesday (June 1st)? I'm game, are you? 

Saturday, May 28, 2022

Just Keep Movin' & Groovin'


No matter what Momma N throws my way, I gotta keep moving and grooving.

What can I say? It's my best coping strategy. After all, sitting inside will not make the iffy weather pass any quicker. 

It was another week of (mostly) undesirable weather. Some rain (though not as much as was in the forecast), unseasonably cool temps (again), and plenty of wind (I ask you, what's new?). But, it still was great to get outside and face each day head-on.

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Mayfessing...


Well here we are again...or is it just me?

Another month, and a few more 'fessions to disclose. 

Shall we get this 'fession party started?

Monday, May 23, 2022

Girl Power: Market to Market Relay 2022 recap


Girl Power.

There's something about rallying together, over the course of 76ish miles, and getting it done. All kinds of grit. Lots of perseverance. A few tears along the way. An endless supply of support, encouragement, and laughter. And a finish line like none other.

I'm talking about the Market to Market Relay. And the sisterhood of six other runners and myself. And 12 hours (and nine minutes) of running. And a crowded van. And a nearly 18-hour day together... 

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Riding the Recovery, literally



This week was all about recovering and riding, which made for a perfect pair.

Fresh off the Market-to-Market Relay (and my 14-mile contribution), my body was ready for some down time. As I have said many times, if I've said it once, my body prefers recovery-in-motion. What better way to spend some quality time with Krystal (the new bike), getting to know one another?

My running muscles appreciated the TLC that the bike provides. My entire body benefited from the cardio fix. And my mind and soul soaked up all those feel-good vibes from being outdoors. Talk about your triple wins! 

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Bring On Summer!


 

It's no secret that I love Summer. 

And, I love summer running. I can say, in all honesty, Summer is my favorite season for running, as well as any form of fitness that I can take outside.

While many find the heat (and humidity) of the summer months too much to bear, I find it invigorating. After all, I'd rather be too hot than too cold. Call me crazy.

Monday, May 16, 2022

Des Moines Women's 10K race recap

 


Well, suffice it to say it was a "mother" of a day.

It may have been Mother's Day, but it wasn't a typical Mother's Day for me. For 2022, Mother's Day came with the added bonus of a morning race...and it was a doozy!

We're talking all kinds of crazy (especially in terms of weather), blessing Iowa's capital city for the Des Moines Women's 10K on the morning of May 8th. It's a good thing I have a sense of humor, because Momma N certainly didn't want to play nice...

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Suddenly Summer


How about a sweet fast-forward right into Summer?

Momma N really had her game messed up this week! She kept forcing the wind on us (pretty much on the daily), but she also abruptly upped the temps by 40-ish degrees. As much as I embrace the heat of summer, I do appreciate a bit of an acclimation, thank you very much. I will gladly take it, though, and give winter a final kick to its backside. 

Fresh off a challenging 10K race, my body was more than ready for some recovery time. The heat and humidity, in a sense were pretty well-timed in that I didn't have a lot of intense outdoor fitness stuff on tap for the week...so maybe Momma N did me a favor?

Monday, May 9, 2022

Fight for Air Climb - 2022 recap


Every step counts.

All 3,336 of them. On a warm day. In the sunshine. At a baseball stadium.

The event: The Fight for Air Climb.

The objective: To climb for those who aren't able, to promote health and fitness, and to raise funds (on behalf of the American Lung Association) to aid those who suffer with lung disease.

The climber: me (and numerous others).

Saturday, May 7, 2022

Let the Mayhem Commence


Is it ironic that the start of May also jump-started a spurt of activity?

I mean, there's been the usual weather-dancing (#wind and #rain and #morewind) and running gear confusion (#layers), but the month of May also adds in multiple events with race bibs. Sure, why not? 

Go big or go home, right?

Thursday, May 5, 2022

MAYbe We Should Chat


MAYbe it's May, but things are feeling kinda "unMay-like" this year.

The weather is 5-6 weeks behind where it should be, and it's been cold, damp and blustery more often than not. We have had plenty of sunshine, though, so that's a plus. Also, despite the cooler than normal weather, the trees are blossoming, the grass is a striking shade of green, and most of the spring bulbs are in bloom.

I am grateful to get outside on a daily basis, though (the #optoutside streak is showing no sign of stopping). A good thing about the cold weather is that it does make a warm beverage (post-workout, or otherwise) a pretty sweet treat.

Even better than a hot beverage, is gathering with friends, and having a chat session. What ya say?  Shall we gather and chat for a bit? 

Monday, May 2, 2022

A Favorite Medal


If my medals could talk, they'd probably have some interesting stories to tell. 

It's tough to pic a favorite, but the Marine Corps Marathon medal is at the top of my list of favorites.

Care to hear its story?

Read on...

Saturday, April 30, 2022

Sort of on the Down Low


How about a week on the down-low?

Most know I don't like sitting idle, even after a tough (hilly and windy) race. I do know how to "scale-it-back" while my body recovers, though. We all get to do our fitness our way, and recovery is no exception. Thank goodness!

Of course, Momma N did her best to intervene, but she also threw in a few nice surprises...

Thursday, April 28, 2022

'Fessing & Guessing


Here we are again...another month is winding down, already! 

I am (again) in a whirlwind of wonder at the passing of time ( I swear I just wrote my March Runfessions post yesterday). I am also in a continued state of confusion as to which season we are really in (because it changes every day in Iowa). And, I have a few 'fessions to come clean about (some things never change).

Shall we do a quick pass through the 'Fessional? You know, cleanse our soles (and souls!) and all that jazz...

Monday, April 25, 2022

Drake Road Races Half Marathon 2022 Recap


Shall we talk about 13.1 hilly miles of smiles?

I've said it many times...I much prefer a challenging race course over an "easy" one. Of course, it's all relative who deems what is "easy" or "challenging." If you're looking for a race course that will test your legs, your determination, your endurance and your grit, the Drake Road Races Half Marathon will fill those needs.

Couple the hilly race course with the usual erratic spring weather of Iowa, and you're in for a morning like none other on the streets of Des Moines. 

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Peek-a-boo! I See You, SPRING!


Well, what do ya know...it would appear that Spring has finally sprung!

We did have some cold temps, early in the week, and we had plenty of wind (I know, I know...I say that every week). We had quite a bit of rain in the forecast, but didn't get as much as we'd anticipated. It is still a bit cooler than normal, but it does feel like Old Man Winter has finally left the premises.

With an upcoming half marathon on the weekend's roster, I treated this week as a bit of a taper... 

Monday, April 18, 2022

Cause & Effect


You gotta love a good "cause," am I right?

Such is the case with partaking in an event (ahem, like a race) and fundraising for their charity partner(s) or the event itself.

Hence my 10-year relationship with the Fight for Air Climb, my favorite cause.

Saturday, April 16, 2022

Another Round of Weather Roulette


Well, another round of Weather Roulette went down this week. 

Can I runfess that I'm not a very willing player? Every time I wash the fleece-lined tights, headbands and gloves, I wistfully hope it's for the last time this season...only to have to dig them out ((again)) for "just one more run." 

Thankfully, I do know the end is in sight, and that all these cold (and windy) days will be a fading memory. And, thankfully, I am grateful to have a good supply of fleece-lined gear in my possession for the time being. That said, I'm ready to spring ahead to brighter and warmer days.

Monday, April 11, 2022

#OptOutside Streak: 500 Days!


Where there's a will, there's (a determined runner who will find) a way.

I'm not stranger to streaking. It's happened for the past nine years with the RW Winter Run Streak. I also did the RW Summer Run Streak once (Memorial Day through July 4th). Most recently, I completed my third Week of Pi 7-day streak.

Ever since Thanksgiving Day 2020, though, I've also been #OptOutside streaking. Just last week, I passed the 500-day mark. 

And I don't plan on stopping anytime soon...

Saturday, April 9, 2022

Waiting It Out


It was another week of Spring in Iowa...and it's left me (still) waiting for Winter to take a hike.

We did have an itsy bit of sunshine, so it wasn't all gloom and doom. But there were falling temps, rain, non-stop wind, and even some of the white stuff (I refuse to call it by name this time of year).

Sigh.

There's a lot to be said for being #IowaTough, so I wasn't completely stuck inside. But I'm eagerly waiting for some warm spring weather to arrive (and stay).

Monday, April 4, 2022

About That Sunny Sunday Run


Can we talk about a near-perfect sunny Sunday run, amidst the sunrise? 

It's no secret how much I embrace my sunrise runs, and how much I love my early mornings. Now that we're on the bright side of the Equinox, the sunrises are coming earlier and earlier...and I'm over-the-moon excited about it. 

Case in point, my most recent sunrise run...

Saturday, April 2, 2022

Sometimes You Gotta Just GO With It!


Sometimes you gotta just GO with it!

It was a crazy week of weather, and there was a lot of pivoting and dancing to get things done. Alas, if you want it bad enough, you'll find a way. Momma N be damned.

So, yeah, there was wind, rain, cold temps, snow...and did I mention wind? Thankfully, there also was some intermittent sunshine thrown in for good measure.

Thursday, March 31, 2022

A Time for Chai and Chatter


Have you heard? 

Winter staged an ugly (IMO) return this past week. And, it was a most unwelcome return, at that. 

Needless to say, the chai latte's have been on repeat in an effort to stay warm. You know, this would be a fabulous time to gather over said chai latte's (or the warmest beverage of your choosing) and chat about life, fitness and the latest happenings.

Are you game? Got your steaming mug in hand? Let's go...

Saturday, March 26, 2022

Spring Has (sort of) Sprung


As the saying goes, Spring has sprung.

In Iowa (and probably a lot of the Midwest), that just means the calendar shows we've moved beyond the Spring Equinox. The spring weather can be rather unpredictable and ever-changing. 

This week, for example, we had summer-like temps, spring-like rain, and winter-like snow. The one constant was the daily wind...and the wind was a doozy!

Thursday, March 24, 2022

How About a Few SpringFessions


Well, just like that, we're facing the first Spring 'Fessional Session of 2022.

Although the calendar shows Spring, this first official week of Spring has felt a bit more like late Fall. The sunshine has been hit or miss, and the temps have been a bit chilly. Of course, that annoying wind has been unrelenting...but all is well. The increased daylight neutralizes the weather whiplash. At least we're now on the bright side of the Equinox!

Anyways, shall we get to the 'fessing?

Monday, March 21, 2022

Week of Pi - 2022 Recap


Recently, I took on an annual endeavor-of-sorts, for the third time...the Week of Pi Challenge

This quirky challenge coincided with the quirky National Pi Day, March 14th. For those not in the loop, the number pi is a mathematical "constant," used in physics and various fields of math. In short, it is the ratio of a circle's circumference to its diameter (you're welcome). Approximately equal to 3.14, it's only natural that March 14th would be the perfect "National Day" to pay honor to it.

March 14th is also my birthday, and I am (and have always been) a bit of a math geek. How's that for a perfect coincidence?

Saturday, March 19, 2022

Spring? Hey Ho, Let's Go!


Let's just say Momma N gave us a nice preview of what's to come this week, Spring-wise.

After a nasty week of winter-rebounding, this new week seemed to have turned the page. The final week of Winter treated us to spring-like temps with all kinds of sunshine. Of course, there was the requisite wind (frankly, I think it's here to stay)...and things did turn a bit chilly in the final days. 

But, alas, I do believe the frigid worst is behind us.

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Shamrock Shuffle Race Recap


Sometimes, on race day, the stars, moons and planets (and any extra powers that be) will all align.

And, sometimes they don't.

The weather may be undesirable. The course may be unexpectedly tough. Your body may feel fatigued or your energy level is in the negative. Or, all of these factors could show up at the start line, give your mojo a run for its money, and wreak havoc on your race.  

Such was the case for me on my most recent race day. 

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Winter's Revenge


Talk about your weather whiplash!

After a week of spring weather previews, Momma N pulled out the rug and threw us -smack dab- back into Winter. This started with a heavy snowfall overnight Sunday, and continued with cold temps and a heavy dose of wind...almost on the daily. 

Cold and windy weather is not a surprise this time of year, but it's still a buzzkill when it happens. Thankfully, the bulk of Sunday's snow was gone by Monday afternoon. The cold temps, though, set up homestead for the better part of the week...

Thursday, March 10, 2022

Oh Dear Daylight, How I Love Thee


Daylight Savings Time arrives this weekend, and I have the welcome mat out in position.

Although the daylight has been on a spiked increase in recent weeks, the official start of DST puts us yet another step closer to warmer weather. Better yet, Spring officially starts a week later. 

I don't know about you, but I simply cannot wait!

Saturday, March 5, 2022

A Tease of SPRING


Supposedly, no one likes a tease...

But when it comes to Spring weather, I beg to differ. After all, we know the warmer weather is on the way. It may not get here as quickly as we'd prefer, but getting a little preview of it sure feels good!

Such was the case in Iowa this week. Cold mornings. Warm afternoons. Plenty of wind. Singing birds. Sunshine, lots of sunshine. Temps warm enough to melt away the bulk of the snow. It was all good.

Thursday, March 3, 2022

A Wee Little Coffee Chat


As luck would have it, the first weekend of the month is upon us (and so is a fun little Irish-themed holiday, in a couple of weeks).

We all know what that means, right? The Ultimate Coffee Date is on the roster for many of us...a chance to gather, virtually, over a warm beverage of choice, and have some chatter. We can talk running and fitness, or whatever we so choose.

What's there to chat about this month? 

I'm so glad you asked...

Monday, February 28, 2022

Just 5 Words?


I'm always up for a challenge.

Trying to pick just five words to describe myself was far from easy. After all, it's nearly impossible to assume a subjective analysis of oneself.

That said, here's what I came up with...

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Into The Light


This week's theme would have to be "Out of the Darkness and Into the Light."

Let's just say I have really been embracing the increased daylight, the sunshine-filled days, and the excitement of easing closer to Spring (and, ultimately, Summer).

The sunrises are showing up (most days) while I'm still outside, before getting ready for my workday. The sunsets are coming later, well after I've gotten home from work. And, although the temps are still feeling very much winter-like, the wind (on occasion) is starting feel more balmy than frigid.

Seriously, what's not to love?

Thursday, February 24, 2022

A Visit to the February 'Fessional


Just when I think I have nothing to 'fess about...a few seconds later, a few 'fessions come to light. 

Yes, it's that time of the month again (and already). Care to join me?

Got any 'fessions of your own to share? 

If you don't mind, I'll go first...

Monday, February 21, 2022

Running Against the Wind...some thoughts


Can we talk about he wind?

I have, on many occasions, proclaimed the wind as my nemesis. 

This is not contingent on any particular season, though it's far more of an issue in the colder months.

What is it about this force of nature that is so humbling, yet empowering?

I have a few thoughts on the matter...

Saturday, February 19, 2022

Awaiting the next Dragon to Slay


It was a week...

There was sunshine. There was wind. Cold temps. Fleeting warm (for February) temps. Did I mention the wind? Inside workouts in the Glisten-n-Glow Den. Outside fitness in the fresh windy air. 

Plenty to do; and many a dragon to slay. 

Thursday, February 17, 2022

The Defender Ring


Ever heard the phrase, "The ring's the thing?"

Well, it has merit, at least if we're talking about fashion, function and peace of mind.

Case in point: The Defender Ring.