That Good Old Mountain Dew

April 18, 2010 at 7:04 pm | Posted in Cross Training, People I Meet, running, Training | 5 Comments
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No Mountain Dew for me…but I did have some Mountain Mayhem. 🙂

Oh wow. SO much to talk about!!!!!

I can’t even remember what I did or didn’t talk about last time. Geez.

Running Week:

Well, as you know last weekend was a 5K that I turned in to a 10K. This weekend I had a REAL 10K. My first time ever racing that distance. Yeah, I’d ran it before, but never raced.

So of course, in my typical style, I don’t do an EASY 10K. No, nothing flat. Nothing simple. Nothing on pavement even! Of course I do a Mountain Junkies race. The Mill Mountain Mayhem. Aptly named.

The entire first mile is uphill. Entire.

And not a little hill either. A mondo-jumbo-evil hill. A mountain even.

Hence the name.

Thank GOD the finish was all downhill. However we did have to walk about a half mile UPHILL to get to the start. Which was also uphill.

Thank GOD the finish was all downhill. However we did have to walk about a half mile UPHILL to get to the start. Which was also uphill.

Actually it takes you through the Star City trails system, TO Mill Mountain, behind the zoo, around the Star **Roanoke is known as the Star City** and then back down the hill. Somehow…this amounts to 6.2ish miles. I still swear the first 4 miles were all uphill. Even after we reached the Star…and circled around to the back of it….the trail STILL had a slight incline.

I said quite a few choice phrases….and mom was behind me the whole way. Haha.

Mostly I was saying bad things about the race directior. I’ve been doing his races for years now…and at some point in every race, I question his sanity…or question his motives for the course. 🙂 He and his wife are both awesome. I’m a huge fan of their races, no matter how painful.

The best race crew EVER. These ARE the Mountain Junkies.

The best race crew EVER. These ARE the Mountain Junkies.

Also this week I found a new road near my house to run/bike. It’s VERY quiet. Secluded almost. I ran for about 20 minutes on it and was only passed by one car. That’s pretty great. It’s fairly flat, and doesn’t have any nasty curves so I feel safe on a bike without worrying that a driver will come up behind me on a turn and not see me. I haven’t biked it yet. I figured I’d run it first to get a better idea of the traffic on the road. It’s easier to jump out of the way on foot than on a bike!

Knitting Week:

Not a lot of knitting. Worked a little on my aunt’s socks. I’m having second-sock syndrome. I just don’t wanna knit them anymore.

I did spin some though! AND over the last week or two I learned how to set the twist in my yarn, so yay me!

Working with my roving from Gate City. Mmmm.

Working with my roving from Gate City. Mmmm.

Whoo, I has yarn!

Whoo, I has yarn!

Favorite:

This week’s favorite HAS to be netflix on the wii. OH MY GOSH. I can get a TON of movies and TV shows INSTANTLY to my TV. Considering the fact I don’t have real TV here…just broadcast…this is incredible. I went from having 4 channels, 5 on a sunny day, to just about ANY movie or TV show I want.

Ta-Da!!!

Ta-Da!!!

Yeah, they are all old episodes, but I’ve been without real TV for almost a year now…so I finally get to catch up!

Plus, the movies! I don’t have to wait 3 days to change out movies. If I watch part and end up not liking it, it wasn’t a wasted 3 days!

Netflix, your instant movies rock my face. (Yes, I stole that. You know who you are and you know you love me.)

Other Junk:

Well because a 10K on some brutal trails yesterday wasn’t enough…the bff and I decided to go a-hiking.

We wandered down to Fairystone Park to explore the trails around there.

Oh how I love hiking season. Man it’s awesome out today. 65 degrees or so…sunny, but breezy…perfect.

We picked a trail at random…Stony Falls I think?

The first drop wasn't much taller than I am. You can walk in the stream right up to it.

The first drop wasn't much taller than I am. You can walk in the stream right up to it.

The falls were little, but being as we’re in a flatter part of the state, I didn’t expect much. The falls were small enough that if it was warmer…I really would have considered trying to climb them. Maybe another time. But after the falls, we kept going on the trail, and found an AWESOME view.

A seat with a view!

A seat with a view!

Then we continued on the trail…followed the signs for the trail head…which on the map there were only 2…but…let me just say one trail head is NOT the same as another.

We wound up near a camp ground, but NOT the one we parked near…so we found another trail…that pointed us closer to the right direction…and then thanks to some lucky guessing, we found our way back to the car.

The trails were all REALLY well marked…we always knew what trail we were on, what mile we were at, but the downside of the park/hike was that we couldn’t find a big trail system map ANYWHERE. It would have been nice to be able to see a “You are here” dot somewhere….especially in the parking lot or at the camp ground so we could better locate ourselves.

Overall, I liked the trail we went on, and I really want to go back again soon.

I need more hiking companions. Any takers?!?!? I pack a great picnic! 🙂

Also, being as it’s Earth Week, I did my fair share!

I planted stuff! Yesterday I planted 5 tomatoes and 2 basil plants.

I planted stuff! Yesterday I planted 5 tomatoes and 2 basil plants.

I got this off of The Vegster’s blog. I’m not actually participating in the challenge…but I just enjoy knowing that I’m helping our planet. I typically do these things anyway…so it works. Here’s the list. The ones in bold are the ones I did this week!

GREEN WEEK CHALLENGES:

  1. Wash clothes with cold water 1 pt **I do it every time!**
  2. Drink a green smoothie 1 pt
  3. Eat a vegetarian or vegan meal 1 pt
  4. Use cloth napkins 1 pt
  5. Make and use your own cleaning products (Recipes here!) 2 pts
  6. Use a canvas, or reusable, grocery bag 1 pt
  7. Plant a tree/herb/vegetable (indoors or out) 2 pts
  8. Shop at your local farmers market or buy only local produce for a day 1 pt ***I went to 3 local markets, does that count 3 times?***
  9. Shop at your local farmers market/buy local for the next week 2 pts
  10. Take all batteries, old computers, DVD players, or other electronics to an electronics recycling center (keep hazardous substances out of the landfill) 2 pts
  11. Start a compost 2 pts
  12. Clean out your pantry and donate unopened non-perishables to a food bank 2 pts
  13. Walk, bike or take public transportation to work for the ENTIRE week 2 pts
  14. Carpool to work/store/gym 1 pt
  15. Make an Earth inspired meal using only whole foods- whole grains, fresh veggies and/or fruits, nuts, seeds 1 pt
  16. Get in touch with the Earth- try a yoga class, go for a walk without distractions such as your Ipod, meditate 1 pt
  17. Donate your time to a soup kitchen (good karma!) 2 pts
  18. Bring a reusable coffee cup on your next cafe run 1 pt
  19. Hang laundry to dry 1 pt

Also this week…I watched Food Inc. We will have to have a WHOLE separate post about that sometime. Whew.

Sending Luck Shoutout:

This week’s shoutout is to everyone doing BOSTON tomorrow!!!!! Karyn is gearing up, and a lot of people from my local running group are going as well. GOOD LUCK to everyone that’s Boston Bound!!!!

I’m SOOOO streaming the race tomorrow during school. My kids can DEAL. 🙂

Break Stuff

March 31, 2010 at 6:32 pm | Posted in Cross Training, Half-Marathon, running, Training | 6 Comments
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All my stuff keeps breaking. See “Other Junk” for details.

Annnd it’s been almost 3 weeks!

I swear, I need to work on my posting regularity. The good news is there was a lot more running than blogging so…that’s what counts, right? 🙂

Knitting Week:

Hmm…where did I leave you? Oh, my fun little bags! Well using said bags quite a bit. Haven’t made more…no time and haven’t been home but that’s ok.

I did finish ONE of the aunt’s socks! One more to go!!!! I also cast on for a cat sweater that dad wants.

Yeah. Cat sweater.

Not a sweater for him with a cat on it…but a sweater for his cat.

Yeah.

I’ll just stop there. There are no words. But feel free to google images of “cat in sweater”. It’s highly amusing.

This is the one I’m making, except in red.

Yeeeah. Cat sweaters. So wrong. So very wrong.

Yeeeah. Cat sweaters. So wrong. So very wrong.

Yeah.

Running Week:

So far this week, 2 good runs and some awesome yoga.

Last week, 2 run days, some sick days, and some yoga.

Week before, 3 run days, bike day (whoo!) and some other stuff.

PS, Half Marathon training started. DUM-DA-DUM!!!!!!!!! So super excited! The half is the Trail Nut Half that Mountain Junkies does. Pretty awesome if you ask me.

I’m also hoping to sign up for the MCM come this time next week. I’m debating between that and the OBX Marathon. Mom REALLY wants to do a half this fall…and since MCM doesn’t have a half…and OBX does…I’m debating. If mom will pay for lodging and transportation to OBX…I’m down with that one. 🙂 Also may talk Carly, Chrissy, Cali, Jordan and Kristen in to doing that one. Or at least I’ll TRY to talk them in to it. Haha. OH but wait…Karyn is doing MCM this year I think……Crap, I wanted to meet her! Karyn, you doing MCM? Yesno?

Anyway. Next Saturday is the Susan G Komen race here and I am BEYOND excited!!!!!!!!! Hopefully my friend and her mom, who is a breast cancer survivor, will walk it with me. That would be awesome. Either way, I’ll be there helping out and/or running/walking. 🙂

I missed signing up for BOTH tri’s so no BAMF award for me. 😦 But I will do the Mill Mountain Mayhem on April 17th. Pretty excited for that.

Moving on.

Favorite:

This week’s favorite…I’m going to go with Geocaching!!!!!! What’s Geocaching, you ask??? Well wander on over to geocaching.com and find out!

It’s basically a bunch of dorks (myself included) that use million dollar government satellites to find tupperwear in the woods.

See??? FUN!!!

See??? FUN!!!

Heh.

All you need is a handheld GPS or even a car one *speaking of car GPS’s mine died. More on that later* and a decent sense of direction and stealth and you’re off!

It’s really fun. It’s kind of like treasure hunting for secret hiding locations. Basically, you get some coordinates from geocaching.com (type in your home address, I bet you 5 bucks that a cache pops up within 10 miles of you), drive/walk/hike/run/bike to the location….and get out your handy-dandy GPS…and try to find the cache! If you do, you sign the log…and head off to the next one.

They also encourage people to pick up trash on their way to/from the cache…so yay for being eco-friendly.

It’s really fun to do with a few friends, or with little kids, or adults who act like kids…Haha. So…if you haven’t tried geocaching, then DO IT! Otherwise, TFTC. 🙂

Other Junk:

So my TomTom died. Thankfully I noticed it’s little issue when I was trying to calculate how late I was going to be, and not how to get to where I was going. 🙂

It has somehow reset itself…and when I try to turn it on, it wants me to go through the setup…and when I get to “Select Voice” it crashes, and resets itself on it’s own….so I’m stuck in an infinite loop of Power on-setup-voice screen-crash.

Not. Cool. Can’t google my way out of it either. I’ve tried. If you do happen to have a suggestion, lay it on me, cause otherwise I’ve got a silver square paperweight. (Yes I’ve hooked it up to the computer, tried to update software, done a reset manually…still looping.)

Aaaand if that wasn’t awesome enough…my car crapped itself on Monday. Well technically Friday. It started being all weird…and when I’d put it in park the RPM’s would jump up to 3,000….while idiling….so that was awesome. But then Sunday it was FINE. Acted totally normal.

Monday morning, went out to start it…and RPM’s jumped WAY up again. Turned it off, TRIED to get a ride to work…couldn’t find ANYONE…had to take an unpaid day off work (NOT COOL) and then an hour later when I tried to drive it to the mechanic…… it was fine. Totally fine.

So it’s STILL at the mechanic…they think it might be the wiring…but we won’t know until tomorrow. Let me just say this is NOT how I wanted to spend my spring break…or my birthday cash. (I’ll be….older on April 12th) So yeah.

Other news…I planted stuff.

It grew.

It rained.

My cat is insane.

The end!

(Oh, and one of my students asked me if elephants lay eggs. They were serious.)

Sisterly Love Shoutout:

This week’s shoutout is to Cali who is my friend’s sister and like a sister to me. Heh, she may BE my sister-in-law one day but we’ll see. Anyway, Cali is AWESOME because she’s not only letting me drag her in to doing her first 5K, but she’s ALSO attempting to do my half-marathon training plan along with me!!! I’m pretty sure Cali is a much better runner and a lot more in shape than she gives herself credit for. So far she’s doing REALLY well with her half-training. Hence why I am totally going to talk her in to doing a half in the fall. 🙂

Heh. You know you want to!!!!

Love you guys!

Next Go ‘Round

January 18, 2010 at 7:56 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 10 Comments
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It’s been awhile guys!!!

I’ve been busy though, so that’s good, right?

So let’s get started.

The Work Week(s):

Well, I’m gonna be honest, the first week back was ROUGH. So tired. So very, very tired. Second week, not as bad, but I got sick a little bit. Blah.

Also, I tried bribing my kids to pass their benchmark test…it didn’t work. Ugh.

And that’s all I have to say about work. Might delete this section because…really…I don’t like to talk about it!!!!

The Workout Week:

Yeeeeeah!!!! I ran on the elliptical, I ran OUTSIDE because it was WARM for the first time in FOREVER….I also went for a little walk today.

Big news though….

*drumroll*

I have picked out my 2010 race schedule for the most part!!!

Here are the highlights. 5K’s excluded…those come and go as they please.

June 5, 2010 – Trail Nut Half Marathon brought to you by Mountain Junkies!!!! My favorite race series/director/whatever EVER!!!!! My first ever 5K was a Mountain Junkies race. I’m offically a Mountain Junkies junky. Hehe.

Oct 2010 – Gonna try for the MCM again. *nods* Yep. I should do that. Gonna try! 4 months is enough between a half and a full, right? That’s a good schedule, yes?

Now, the big question, I need YOUR help on this!!!!!

April 17 – Mill Mountain Mayhem 10K (Another Mountain Junkies)

OR

April 18 – Rumpass in Bumpass Sprint Triathlon.

What to do, guys? What to do?!?!?!

So…go vote!!!

******************************EDIT*********************************

So…the poll IS annonymous…didn’t mean for it to be…but I’d love to know what you voted for, so feel free to leave it as a comment as well!!! But as long as you vote in the poll, I’m a happy camper!!!

*******************************************************************

The Knitting Week:

Big news, guys!! Big news!!!!!!!!!!

Guess who has now entered in to the world of SPINNING!!!!!!!

*points at self*

Yeah, that’s right!!!!

I took this...

I took this...

...and made that!!!

...and made that!!!

Yeah, it’s not much…but I’m working on it. I’m not too good at getting an even weighted strand yet, but I’m trying!

I’m using some of Abby Franquemont’s video’s off of youtube. So far, I’m not actually dropping the drop spindle in order to spin…rather spinning it in my hand, and moving the twist down the yarn….if that makes any sense.

If anyone wants to pop in and offer advice, please, please, please appear and speak your mind!!!

Also, did my FIRST intarsia *color work* AND first knitting on DPN’s *double point needles* this week!!!

See Courtney Knit!

See Courtney Knit!

Knit, Courtney, knit!

Knit, Courtney, knit!

Congrats Kris and Lyla, who are the proud recipients of my masterpeice!!!

Ta-da!!!

Ta-da!!!

I actually did a second baby hat for another friend’s baby and just have to weave in the ends so that one will be done! Man, I need to throw these things up on Ravelry!!! I’ve been slacking at uploading projects on there!

Well, I guess that about wraps up the past few weeks of knitting!

Favorite:

Hmm….this week I think I’ll have to go with Coconut Macaroons dipped in Chocolate from Bea the Baker. Simply AMAZING.

Coconut and chocolate, what could be better??

Coconut and chocolate, what could be better??

Those aren’t hers, persay, but you can see what I’m talking about. Every single time I go in to town, I try and get one. So if you’re ever in, around, about, or through Floyd VA, then STOP and get one!!!!!! You can find them at various locations on either side of Floyd’s single stoplight.

If you can’t make it out to Floyd, then see what you can find around you!!! Let me tell you, Bea’s are the best though!!!!

Onward!!!

Other Junk:

Not a lot of other stuff to report. Well, my best friend/accountant/running buddy/partner in crime/fave person ever came down….and helped get my financial mess in order.

Yes, folks, this is one in debt blogger.

Student loans piled up…along with some ill-timed tickets from the fuzz….and other life-type nonsense…and I find myself in the throes of debt and collections calls.

The good news is it’s not as bad as I thought!!! Miss Carly has helped me out…and set me straight! Hopefully by April all will be right in my finaicial world and I can stop stressing so much!!! But until then….we are on a complete and total spending freeze.

Meaning mom will get hit up for race entry fees and such. 🙂

Anyway, that’s life. It could be a lot worse!!!

Other news…the fiddling….is coming along. Right now I’m learning Angeline The Baker. Not too bad. I totally LOVE my fiddle though. My instructor is Mike Mitchell of the Floyd Music School, and let me tell you he is STELLAR.

I just wrote 2 paragraphs on how much I liked the lesson…so that’ll be next week’s favorite or shoutout. Point is, fiddling is going good. I can do the first 2 lines without really screwing up too bad. YAY!!!!

So in closing, we shall proceede to our….

Sperlific Shoutout:

This is the part where I go “Oh crap, Sperly tagged me for something. I should go do that thing she tagged me for”

So, first off, if you don’t know her, please go check out Sperly, my blogging/running/triathalon idol. 🙂 She is one of the most AWESOME chicks out there!!!

Second, she has tagged me for the Pay It Forward 7 Fun Facts deal….

Since this post is OH so long….I’m gonna go write those as a separate post and throw it up Wednesday or Thursday!

Go do my poll!!! Watch for the 7 Fun Facts, you may get tagged!!!!!!

In The Still Of The Night

November 1, 2008 at 11:22 pm | Posted in 5k, running, Training | 3 Comments
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In the shadow of night
I see the full moon rise
Telling me what’s in store,
My heart starts aching
My body started shaking
And I can’t take no more, no, no

Hehe. The Into The Darkness 4 Miler was tonight!!!!! WOOT!!!!!!!!!

This is the Blue Ridge Parkway on the way to the course.

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The race started at 7pm. Mountain Junkies (http://www.mountainjunkies.net/) always does an amazing job. They are almost ALWAYS on time and the shirts and shwag are top notch. The race director and his wife are amazing. They are really motivational and they take good care of their runners!!! For example…this is a trail run…on mountain biking and jeep trails….in the woods….lots of tough terrain…and what did they do? They spent a whole heck of a lot of time going over that 4 miles of trail, blowing all the LEAVES OFF THE TRAILS SO WE WOULDN’T GET LOST!!!!!!!!

Not to mention the reflective arrows, the glow sticks, and the glowing dot thingies they put out everywhere so no one would get off course.

Seriously. Cleaned the TRAILS FOR US!!! Now that’s service.

So anyway…it was a pretty rough trail. I did better than I expected considering I did NOT expect some of those hills. I ended up leading 4 guys for awhile. It was pretty fun to just run through the woods, enjoying the pace, not really trying to kill myself…but MAN I started fast. I wish I’d had a watch to see my splits. But anyway, chilled with those guys for awhile. I was in front so it was my job to shout if there was an obstacle up ahead…and quite frequently I wouldn’t SEE the obstacle…but my right foot would FIND it…and I’d slip a little. I think I tweaked a little something in my right calf/ankle…I’m currently RICEing it as I write this.

Finally towards the end I did have to slow up some…especially on that last major hill that this particular course is KNOW for…Every race at this place ends with this hill….and I loathe this hill. Abhor even.

So anyway, finished in around 45:00. Decent…especially considering that I was NOT expecting the terrain to be as rough as it was. I’ve raced at this location before but never this race. WHEW.

Here’s me right after the race.

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And here are some of the people gathered at the finish.

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Went inside, had some goodies. They had quite the spread. Pasta, pumpkin bread, rice krispy treats, apples, candy. Good times. Not to mention all the free energy drinks you could carry. Ha ha. Gotta love Mountain Junkies!!!

So then they did their door prizes and then it was time for awards. I was pretty sure I was out of the running…until I heard the top overall females. I was less than 10min behind the 3rd place female!!! Wow…so I got a little excited…hoping for 3rd but betting I was just out of it in 4th.

So Josh got to the 20-24 year old females…..and WHO got first?!?!?!?!

THIS GIRL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I mean REALLY!!!! Awesomness. Just AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So not only did I have an amazing time running through the woods in the dark…but I GOT FIRST IN MY AGE GROUP!!!! And have I mentioned the rockin awards that Mountain Junkies prides themselves on? This time it was wooden plaques that Josh and Gina made!!! She said she spent weeks painting. Ha ha.

Seriously, amazing time.

Gina, me (with my award!!!) and Josh!

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Trail running at night….AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

❤ IT!!!

Every Mile A Memory

October 28, 2008 at 10:21 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Ok…so let’s just get one thing straight.

I AM A BAMF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

5 mile run yesterday. 5 MILE!!!!! And rockin good pace, I might add.

*does a happy dance*

Seriously. SO excited.

It was with my trainer. I did a 1 mile warmup on the dreadmill while I waited on her to finish with her other client…then we went outside and it was SOOO nice and cool. We’ve discovered I do not function well in heat…but give me some crisp fall air and I can rock it out for MILES. Plus we did mostly flat and pavement with some slight rolling hills and a little flat trailwork…in the woods…which was awesome. I prefer woods to grass…but anyway. I rocked it.

Seriously rocked.

I even sprinted at the end…I mean just went ALL out….my trainer was like “30 more seconds!!! Then we’ll have done a full 40:00…” and I took OFF. She said she was thinking to herself “Wait, WAIT!!! We’re going FASTER??!?! WHAT!?!?!?!?”

Hahahahahaha I’m awesome.

I’m still super excited from that run. Can ya tell?????

But in  other UBER fun news, this weekend is the race I’ve been waiting on for a YEAR!!!!!!!!!! I was too sick last year…and goshdarnit I’m GOING this year!!!!

Check it out: http://www.mountainjunkies.net/Into_the_Darkness.htm

I ❤ Mountain Junkies races. The race director and his wife are amazing. (If you guys read this, HI!!!!) I don’t get to see them much but they know me via email mostly. Their races are by far the best around here!!! My first ever 5K was a Mountain Junkies race so I MIIIIGHT be a little biased but WHO CARES?!?!?! The shirts are always awesome, food is wonderful, and the course could not be more fun!!! They really know how to do a good race.

Well, back to grad school now…

I CAN’T WAIT FOR SATURDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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