Mainely Running
Join me as I train in Maine and race all over the world in pursuit of my goal to run a marathon on all 7 continents

Monday, October 25, 2010

On the road

So this is my last week at my current job. I didn't manage to finagle much time off between jobs, but I did get Friday off, so I'll do my 17 miler then so I'm fresh for my 6 am flight on Monday. The question will be the on-going training once I'm traveling. I know I won't get up at 2 am in order to get in a long run before a 6 am flight. I know I'll be fried after taking a red eye home and not want to run then either. Any road warriors out there? Any advice?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


I read an interesting article the other day about how it is largely genetics that determines whether or not you find exercise enjoyable. It's an interesting concept and one that I've been thinking a lot about lately, particularly over the weekend.

I met my sister in New Hampshire to climb Mt. Washington for her 16th birthday. She's my half-sister actually, and 10 years younger than I am. When she was younger we adored each other and spent a lot of time together, but in recent years we've grown apart. Part of that is my fault- I've been busy establishing a post collegiate life. I don't go to my Dad's house regularly. That's partially because I'm busy, and partially because I just don't enjoy being there anymore. My step-mom seems to reign over the house, and no matter what my Dad and I do, it isn't right. My sister is picking up that same attitude, and honestly just isn't that pleasant to be around. Most of the time she doesn't speak to me, and if she does, it is to complain.

But climbing, she was happy, and we were happy. We're both athletes, and somehow being in motion broke down the walls between us. In sneakers and light jackets we charged up the mountain, passing hikers that were far better equipped. At the summit we stood knee high in the snow, shivering, and almost getting knocked over by the wind, but grinning from ear to ear. When we got near other hikers we both instinctively kicked into a higher gear in order to pass them. When we got back down to the base, and realized our ride wasn't there, we both were eager to try another loop while we waited. We both have that drive to push ourselves. Then we got back in the car, and she returned to her sullen self, grunting responses and complaining about my choice of movies and restaurants. So I'll have to cling to those moments on the mountain.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ellie's Inspiration

Over the weekend I went to a funeral for my grandmother's best friend, Ellie. From the moment she was born, at just 1.5 lbs, Ellie faced major obstacles. She spent her early days in the wood-stove to stay warm and drank sour milk. She grew into a thriving toddler, that befriended the little girl next door, my grandmother. That friendship endured until the day my grandmother died, despite time and distance. They saw each other when they could, and wrote long letters many times a week. This is a lesson to me, I have no friendships this close despite having so many ways to connect.

As the oldest of 6 children, Ellie went to work in a factory in order to support the family, so her brothers and sisters could go to college and peruse their dreams. Ellie went on to work as a farmer, a housekeeper, a nanny, a grocery store clerk, and finally at the age of 79 she decided to take on a new job caring for the "elderly." None of the jobs was easy or glamorous, but Ellie did all with spirit and a smile. Ellie's husband was killed in WWII, leaving her with 2 young daughters to raise. Her daughter Lindy spoke at the funeral saying "I realize now things weren't easy, but we never knew that. Mom made an adventure out of everything. We'd hop in the back of the car, sitting on buckets, because it didn't have a backseat, and drive until we got tired. Then we'd get out and have a picnic and see what we could find." Adventure was in Ellie's soul. She, her sisters, and sometimes my grandmother went on many trips, everywhere from Amish country to Las Vegas. Her sister Ruthie recalled one trip to Acadia national park where their hotel reservation was lost. So they found a local church and camped with the hippies in the basement.

Facing some major changes, I am trying to channel Ellie's spirit and look at life as an adventure. We can't choose what life throws at us, but we can change how we deal with it. Ellie would not want us to dwell on her death, she would want us to throw a party and hop in the car and head off into the unknown to see what we can find.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Thanks to the rain gods.

Well it was about 100% humidity during my run this morning, but the downpours held off until 20 minutes after I finished. Thank you to the rain gods.

The run was decent. It was my first try with the run walk method- I did 5 minutes running and 1 minute walking. I averaged under 10 minute miles, so I'm happy. I think the biggest benefit for me was metal, in that I only thought ahead to the next walk break, which is a lot easier than looking ahead to the end of run.