Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Drake Road Races - the 10K Game-Changer



 There’s much to be said about going with your gut (and not your ego). 

Such was the case last weekend’s Drake Road Races. I made the decision to scale-down to the 10K, foregoing my 9-year half marathon streak. And I did so, surprisingly, with zero regrets or guilt. 

I registered for the half marathon back in October, well before I knew there would a house (finally) selling, another one purchased, and a stressful timeline of all things moving/relocating. In other words, my typical pre-spring training took an unexpected backseat and the probability of running 13.1 miles became unlikely. 

Saturday, April 20, 2024

So This Is Spring


Spring in Iowa. 

Hmmm. It doesn’t feel like one specific “season.” It’s more like a random grab bag of all-season weather, where you don’t really know what each new day will bring. It’s definitely not boring, but it does keep us guessing on what to wear (for fitness and otherwise). 

Monday, April 15, 2024

A Race I Run Every Year


Hands down, my favorite race, every year, is DAM to DSM.

I've been trekking to Des Moines, the first weekend after Memorial Day, every year since 2008 to run this iconic race. 

Formerly known as Dam to Dam, this race was my first-ever long distance endeavor. Like a lot of distance runners, once I got a taste of that long distance finish line, I was hooked. 

Saturday, April 13, 2024

Eclipsed by the Wind

 


Can you say WIND???

It's always windy in Iowa this time of year, but this past week was unbelievably gusty. As much as I love the great outdoors, even I struggled with getting my buttocks outside on the daily. Don't worry, the #OptOutside streak is still going strong...but there were a few bare minimums with my efforts due to this week's circumstances.

Monday, April 8, 2024

Fight for Air Climb - 2024 recap


When they named this event the Fight for Air Climb, they weren’t kidding!

Hot stairwells. Heavy breathing. Trashed leg muscles. But a finish line like none other. 

There’s much to love and respect about fighting for that air, all for the sake of those who need it most. Many struggle with lung health, and it’s for them that I (and numerous others) return to the stairwells every year. 

Saturday, April 6, 2024

Let's Get Settled



It's all fun and games, settling into a new place, until the weather gives you attitude.

Although the week started off kind of winter-like (with the requisite cold temps, nasty precip, and blowing wind), things did turn-around by the weekend (except for said blowing wind). Oh, did I mention the wind was rather beastly and downright inappropriate?

Nonetheless, what can we do but persevere, hopefully with a smile. A sense of humor never hurts either.  

Thursday, April 4, 2024

Time for a Chatty Gathering


 So, shall we chat? 

It doesn’t need to be about running, or even fitness…but who am I kidding? There’s always plenty of that with which to chat. 

Shall we get this chatty gathering started? 

Sunday, March 31, 2024

Grooving & Moving (not necessarily in that order)



Well, it’s been a week! 

There was lots of moving & grooving, with a good mix of stress & insomnia added in for good measure. But, it’s (mostly) all in the rear view mirror and we’re still in one piece, still standing, and still smiling. 

Friday, March 29, 2024

My StressFessions Overfloweth...


Let's just cut right to the chase - this month's 'fessions are full-on stress-induced.

That's not necessarily a bad thing, but there's plenty on my plate that needs released. Are you ready? Buckle-up, this may be a bumpy ride to the 'fessional...

Saturday, March 23, 2024

Oh, the Irony!


Isn't it ironic?

The weather, that is. I mean, we all knew the pre-summer fun of recent wasn't going to last. This week's drastic temperature plummet (and accompanying precip), though, was a bit much. 

But, it is what it is. We certainly don't have the power to change the weather (if only, LOL!), but we do have 100% control of how we deal with it.

Monday, March 18, 2024

Another Week of Pi - 2024 recap


Just like that, I was closing in on another trip around the sun. Time flies!

We all know what that means...another Week of Pi to commemorate the occasion. A week of daily lacing-up, weather stalking, and logging 3.14 miles every time I hit the street.

Saturday, March 16, 2024

Running on the Pi


Talk about your action-packed weeks...

This one had a lot going on with the almost daily Pi running, weather stalking, and miscellaneous comings and goings. It's a mighty good thing we all have our fitness fixes to keep us (somewhat) sane, am I right?

Saturday, March 9, 2024

Pre-Spring, Anyone?


Let's just say spring fever has hit me hard, even if the weather isn't quite there just yet.

Although we've had some cold conditions in the AM's, we've also had some pleasant PM's. The sun has been shining, almost on the daily. We haven't seen any of winter's "white stuff" in quite some time. And, the days just keep getting longer.

Yes, it's a pre-spring situation, and I'm eager and excited for what's yet to come.

Monday, March 4, 2024

Leprechaun Chase 10K - 2024 recap


The luck o' the Irish? The luck o' the Chase?

Maybe it was a little o' both, but this past weekend had me donning o' the green and me running shoes and pinning on a race bib. This was my 10th time taking part and I was eager for a good time...

Now in its 14 year, the Leprechaun Chase is a race like none other. It's a friendly competition between lads and lasses (in other words, guys and gals) all on a quest for a first place finish and a celebratory free green beer for their comrades.

Saturday, March 2, 2024

A Multiple Leap Week


There was a whole lotta leapin' going on this week.

Leap Day. Summer weather. Winter temps. Nonstop wind. Need I go on? 

Never a dull moment, and that's usually a good thing...

Thursday, February 29, 2024

Post-Leap Day coffee chatting



Coffee, coffee, who's got the coffee?

And, equally important, who is needing some chatter amongst friends? Anyone?

It's time for the monthly coffee chat, where we talk all things (not just fitness). We can drink whatever we choose (hot or cold, mild or strong, day-appropriate or not so much). And we leave feeling all warm and fuzzy. Sound good?

Shall we get this coffee chatting started?

Saturday, February 24, 2024

I See The LIGHT!


This time of year can be tricky and temperamental.

The temps are all over the map (currently, they're flirting with spring in Iowa), the wind is unrelenting, and the threat of snow is far from over. But, the daylight is increasing! My early morning outdoor antics are seeing signs of the sunrise and my post-workday activities are not shrouded in darkness anymore.

In a nut shell, things are looking brighter as we work our way through the final weeks of winter.

Thursday, February 22, 2024

5 'Fessions 4 February


Well, well, well. It's time, once again, for a trip to the 'Fessional.

Even with a bonus day, February seems to have (almost) flown by at record speed. As per usual, the month hasn't been without incident. It only seems fitting that I share a few bits and pieces and 'fess up the deets.

So here goes...

Saturday, February 17, 2024

Just Chillin' (but not too much)


There was a tad bit of chillin' going on this week.

It's still (somewhat) the off-season, so I'm keeping the mileage steady (as opposed to excessive). The late-winter weather continues to be unseasonably mild, so I'm getting outside without excess layers. And, I am gearing-up for my first race of 2024 (Leprechaun Chase 10K, March 2nd, Omaha NE), so I'm not excessively keeping a low profile.

All in all, I'm keeping things in a desirable balance...I think...

Monday, February 12, 2024

Things I've learned to LOVE about RUNNING


It's been said that love doesn't come easy.

Let's be honest... that's not only true with life in general, but it's especially true with running (at least in my experience).Thankfully, there have been far more good times than bad, and there have been many lessons learned along the way.  

Would you care to hear a few of the "tough love" things I've learned about running? Read on...

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Going With The (off season) Flow


Ah, the off-season!

I totally embrace my off-season, and this one has been no exception...though it has been most unique. Let's just say all of January's "cross-training," via the snow shovel, has left me going "hmmm," LOL.

I've been staying active and keeping busy, but my strength-training has been a bit compromised in recent weeks. This has not been a game-changer, by any means, though I can't help feeling somewhat out of sorts... 

Saturday, February 3, 2024

We Have Sunshine!


Hello, Sunshine, my old friend!

After a somewhat warm week (with dreary skies), we were treated to an even warmer week with a return of (almost) daily sunshine! Suffice it to say, it was quite grand getting back outside in all the spring-like weather.

 It also was equal parts grand getting back to a routine of more consistent walking and running. The strength training...well, that's another story. Not a deal-breaker, though, because it felt like winter had vacated the premises (at least for the time being).

Thursday, February 1, 2024

A Coffee Chat Thaw-Out


Wow, is this ever a great time for a coffee chat!

Actually, anytime is a great time for gathering over coffee (or any beverage-of-choice) and chatting with friends. This particular coffee chat, though comes after a doozy of a January.

All I can say is, "Whew, we made it to February!" That's certainly cause for celebrating!

What ya say? Are you game for some coffee chatting, as the snowy remains of January thaws and melts away?

Saturday, January 27, 2024

Smile...We've Turned the Corner


There was a lot to smile about this week.

After almost two weeks of endless cold, wind and snow (not necessarily in that order), we got a much-appreciated winter thaw. Case in point, the daily snow shoveling didn't have to happen on the daily anymore. I was able to get outside for more than just driveway boot camp. And, the excess layers of gear were no longer necessary.

Granted, winter is still far from over. Just having this nice reprieve, though, makes it feel like we've turned the corner on my least favorite season. That's worthy of a lot of smiling!

Thursday, January 25, 2024

The '24 'Fessions Are Flyin'


Here we are again...

Not only has January 2024 gone quickly, but the monthly trip to the 'fessional is already upon us. Yikes, how did that happen? Oh well, the faster we get through January, the sooner we'll get to summer. 

As per usual, there's always a few 'fessions that need mention. You know the drill...we 'fess the 'fessions, and we move on.

Saturday, January 20, 2024

Not a DOMS Dweller


The DOMS ... Driveway Onset Muscle Soreness. 

Ever heard of it? You may become a lucky victim of this condition after a week (or longer) of daily snow shoveling in one's driveway.

The 20+ inches of snow (from the previous week) kept me busy, gradually chipping away at its lingering remnants. Then, several more inches of the white stuff arrived Thursday afternoon and evening. As a result, my already aching body was blessed with even more driveway boot camp. My biceps have never seen so much action! 

But, all was well. The crazy weather gave me ample opportunity to properly acclimate to the arctic-like conditions as I successfully maintained my #OptOutside streak. Glass half full.

Monday, January 15, 2024

Another Run Streak? DONE!


Yes, I did it again (for the 11th time, nonetheless).

What started as a once-and-done thing, back in 2013, has become a much-anticipated yearly gig. It's no secret how I feel about the winter season. The cold temps, the crazy wind, and the lack of daylight...all are things I can deal with, but ALL of them are major buzzkills.

Enter the annual Runner's World Winter Run Streak. It not only gives me some much-loved fitness via the running shoes, but also a much-needed distraction from all things winter. And, it sees me through the winter solstice.

Saturday, January 13, 2024

Brrrrring on the Biking!

Suffice it say Momma N had some winter wrath to dispel this week, and she did not hold back.

I know, I know...she has spared us plenty of crazy weather, thus far, this typically cold season. We all knew the real winter would eventually be making its arrival, but this grand entrance was quite  unnecessary (and, dare I say, ridiculous).

Although things were a bit precarious with (outdoor) running this week, this gave me ample opportunity to embrace all things biking (indoor, that is). Oh, and there were oodles (upon oodles) of hours of shovel time...

Saturday, January 6, 2024

...And Away We GO!


Let's suffice it to say, the new year is off and running...

The seasonal weather has returned (at least the temps and wind), the run streak has ended, and I'm eyeing all the adventure and excitement that awaits me. 

While I don't do much in regards to resolutions, I do try to assess all that happened (or didn't, LOL) in the previous year and realign my priorities. Although many of these "realignments" happen year-round, they seem to have a little more impact on January 1st. That's what works for me, anyways. 

Thursday, January 4, 2024

Coffee & more, it's 2024!


Did someone say coffee?

It's been a few weeks since our last gathering, and the temps are ever-so-chilly. I don't know about you, but I'm always game for a get-together, warm mugs in hand, for some friendly camaraderie and conversation.  

Shall we?