Holy Rocks & Tree Roots!

My First Experience With a Technical Trail Race

This will be a play by play of my first true (dirt, wild, rocks, tree roots, mud, things that go bump in the night or day) trail race. Sander’s Saunter, Clinton Lake, Lawrence, KS

0400: Wake up, coffee, let dogs out, brrrr it’s cold. More coffee. Dress in layers, 28 or so degrees with a ferocious wind. Do I really want to do this? Yes, yes-friend is expecting me-facebook message last night remember? Dammit, why do I have to be such a dependable person?!

0630: Jump in vehicle. All systems are go. Full tank of gas-yay! Drive to meeting spot. Periscope live broadcast as I go with rant about superficial people.

0715: Arrive at destination-Target parking lot. I sit. I wait. I rant. Life is peculiar. I am warm in my warmly heated vehicle. I wait.

0730: Friend shows up. We chat. We pull out of parking lot. I follow. LONG drive. Toll booths & such. An hour or so. I need to pee. I need to pee bad.

0830ish: Arrive at destination. Clinton State Park, Lawrence, KS. The need to pee intensifies. I spot his/hers johnny rooms. Door locked to hers-dammit! I must pee bad. Pee behind facilities? No-too many cars, not enough coverage. Men’s potty empty. Yes, I use men’s potty. Nasty. Men’s potty stinks. Someone crapped in urinal and stool overflowing with poop & tissue. Dammit-I pee anyway or bladder will rupture. I pee for many minutes…or so it seems.

0845: What a relief. I walk normal now and not like pregnant woman. Now I must wait. Pick up bib/shirt. Stand by fire. Brrrrrr…cold. Chat with friend & pet dogs. Drink hot chocolate.

0900: 25k racers take off. I stand by fire & drink more hot chocolate. Take shirt to vehicle & take selfie with friend. 12243044_10208130134317241_764882618536762374_n

Great guy, encouraged this trail race. He is trail race beast. Runs with dog Athena. Stand around fire some more.

0930: 10k racers take off-me included. Limbs still cold. I am cold. Nose is running. Trying to pace myself and not fall down. Rocky downhill, steep uphill to Sander’s mound. Run around bench & head back down.

12249766_504076539753361_4297100718033957076_n

Mile 1: Where is it? Seems to take forever. Rocks, tree roots. I pass a few runners. A few pass me. Mile one…finally. A 9:something minute mile. I run-mostly alone. Mile 2 comes & goes. Three guys pass me. Many, many uphills/downhills & roots/tree limbs/rocks to hurdle over.

11988443_10156354750020165_4328195937496963289_n

Mile 2.78: First fall. Right toe catches tree root. Down I go -starboard. I get up. No one saw it-yay! I forge on. I get tired. SO many rocky hills! I reach halfway point & slurp down Gatorade. I keep moving.

Mile 4.68: I fall again, hard this time-starboard side again. Girl behind me helped me up. Right hip & left knee hurt. I forge on.

Mile 5 something: I trip & fall again. Starboard side…again. Face plant right side. Right quad hits tree root…ouch. No one around. Third times the charm. I lay on back a minute. I get up. I forge on. SandersSaunter-2015-5917-M

I feel like Rocky-I get knocked down, but I get back up. I pass volunteers telling me where to go. Must hit Sander’s mound again. The worst is behind me. Or so I think. More up hills. More rocks. I walk some. Six miles…really? Seems like 20.

Finish Line: I see finish line-yay! So glad to be done. I finish in 1:10:something. 11:something pace. That messed with my head. Oh yeah, this was a trail race. I wait for my friend to come through with dog.

12247060_10208130138997358_3343473406815320224_n

Dog is beast and so is friend. They finished four minutes after me. I thought I was way ahead. I guess not. Oh yeah-technical trail race.

Takeaway: Technical trails are not for wimps or sissies. Hardest race of my life. Wearing Hoka street shoes was not the smartest thing to do. I fell a lot. Over dressing was not the smartest thing to do. I got hot. Going in with the mindset to race is unrealistic. I wore out.  Just enjoy the journey. Very well organized. Very nice people. Will I do it again? Not any time soon, but yes, I will do one again-with proper shoes, proper outer wear, and a proper mindset.

12074981_492437744264446_1837803823156758389_n

Until We Meet Again,

Stephanie

Just a Little Friday Rant

On Politics:  Oh my goodness, have we ever been more inundated with pros and cons on the refugee situation than in this past week? I agree that there is a huge issue with the problem at hand. However, NO ONE is going to sway me with their cute little memes or guilt trips on all of the children. Remember, the Boston bomber was nine years old when he came to this country. I see the plight of both sides. I don’t see the point of hashing it out on social media. We all have our reasons for believing what we do.

On Customer Service: Where is it these days? Many of my experiences are sub-par to say the least. No one seems to care or give a flying flip that I walk in the store & need assistance. When I ask for assistance, they act like it is such a burden to help me & most of the time do not have a clue as to what I am needing anyhow. A LOT of these are younger people. Now before you chop my head off, see below.

On Brats: Whilst on a trip to Minnesota last month, I stayed at a hotel that had a pool. After having traveled over 400 miles, I thought getting in the pool would be a great way to unwind and prepare for the race the next day. At the pool were over 15 screaming adolescent girls & a couple of boys. The acoustics inside made the whole place echo. It was like being in an insane asylum. Now I am not opposed to kids having fun. I was a kid once. The few parents that were lounging at the tables by the pool seemed to not care that the noise was like nails down a chalk board. However, they were doing very little to corral these little imps as they ran around the pool shoving each other in and tormenting the poor boys. It was unbearable to even sit in the hot tub and when a few of the tyrants got in, it was incredulous how the parents just sat there and watched as their little entitled brats did as they pleased-throwing cups of water & using up all of the towels.

sayings 5

On Bad Parenting:  (See above). My mother is 77 years young and works as a cashier in a small grocery store. She has been in the grocery business all of her life. She has a high work ethic. She catches a lot of shop lifters. She turns a lot of “bad checks” in to the police. She takes pride in her work. A mother with teenage kids came in last night and the little brats thought that they could just run through the store and throw merchandise around. My mother told them to stop-they didn’t. She told their mother that they needed to grow up. The mother in turn stated that she was going to “turn my mother in to the owner because she (the customer) attended his church,” (ad nauseum). My mother phoned the owner to give her side. He stated, “Well, you can’t tell people how to raise their kids.” He is a jerk as far as I’m concerned and a  “bosshole.” I told my mother to turn a deaf ear & eye to all that may happen from this day forth. If bosshole asks why she doesn’t stop something, I told her to reply, “We can’t tell people how to live their lives.” And we wonder what is wrong with this country.

On Bad Behavior:   “Just because a mouse lives in a cookie jar, doesn’t make it a mouse.” That is a quote I heard from the movie “The Hiding Place” when Corrie Ten Boom was referring to Christians who profess themselves as such, but behave entirely the opposite (See above, aka bosshole). What’s in a name. I’d rather sit with a bunch of honest sinners than “fellowship” with a bunch of self-righteous “saints.” Don’t get me wrong, my eldest son is a youth pastor. I am not opposed to attending a church or Christians. I choose to not attend a formal church. That does not define my relationship with Christ. He knows my heart, my motives, and intentions. Living this life is an every moment intentional way of living, not a once a week guilt trip & feel good experience (my opinion of course).

On Fake People:  Social Media is a great platform to connect with people, do business, and just plain have fun. Like many other things, it has replaced so much of what used to be the “norm.” For instance, I was taught to send “thank you” cards to people when receiving a gift or favor. Snail mail is almost a lost art. Yes, one can thank through email, e-message, etc., but it doesn’t really have that personal flair that hand writing a note does. People can redefine themselves through social media also. What you see is not necessarily what you get. It amazes me what people believe. They will believe direct messages from random strangers who have chosen to bash someone’s character. This is disturbing. I choose to do my own private investigating and use People Finders online quite frequently. You may be surprised at what you turn up! My motto: “Trust no one until they have proven themselves to be trustworthy.” If they appear too good to be true, they usually are. More on that concept in another blog.

Conclusion:  With all of that being said. I still believe in the goodness of most people. There are those few who, like the rotten apple in the barrel, “spoil the whole bunch.” There are well behaved children because there are parents who care enough to make them mind. There are great places to shop and eat where the customer really does “come first.” There are true Christ like people amongst us who walk their talk. There are other wonderful people who are just beautiful spirits who do not profess any faith/religion. Finally, there are great, wonderful people on all forms of social media who use it in a positive way to build others up instead of tearing them down.

11988226_1300460840058846_2404720853988465832_n

Thoughts?

“To the prideful, it doesn’t matter what they did or to whom they did it to, or where they’ll end up. To them it only matters that, ‘I did it my way.'”- Max Lucado

Until We Meet Again,

Stephanie

 

86,400 Seconds in a Day

Do you ever find yourself looking at the clock wondering where the day went or conversely wishing the day would hurry up and pass? Me-guilty as charged! We all have 24 hours/1,440 minutes/86,400 seconds in a day, yet so often we define our moments in life hourly by what we schedule into our day.

I am fortunate enough (though some may disagree) to have a 12 hour/3 day work week. This affords me the opportunity to schedule myself chunks of time off without using up vacation hours. This is a wonderful thing when training for races/traveling to those races, etc. But why is it that those same number of seconds at work (though I love my profession) seem to hang dauntingly over my head?

As I write this, I am sitting in bed on the first day of my 15 day fall vacation. Get this-I have no real/set in stone plans. I always take time off this time of year to get “caught up” (deep house cleaning, repairs, etc), spend time with my grown kids, and recharge the batteries. I have become more of a “live in the moment” type person & have tried not to be so rigid with inflexible plans the rest of the year. In other words, opportunities in life that may not happen again, trump shampooing carpets. Therefore, I sort of “fly by the seat of my pants” the prior 11 months.

One such impromptu event came on November third. Thankfully, I was scheduled off that day and could attend. This was one of the most memorable days in my life, when a small crowd of about 800,000 gathered for a little celebration of some “Boys In Blue” aka Kansas City Royals.12185495_10153329294449094_3062390879991051875_o

I used to be the sort of person that if there was a deadline, I would have whatever it was done two weeks in advance. I find myself these days more living in the moment, knowing I will still meet those deadlines. Don’t get me wrong-I was bred to be responsible, but am trying to wrap my head around what it is about those other 86,400 seconds on any given day that make them seem to drag.

Remember as a child when the time between Halloween and Christmas seemed like an eternity? That childlike concept of time, when everything was so concrete was very frustrating! But I am an adult who has abstract thought now, so why do some days seem to frustrate me so?

I truly want to enjoy every second of my life. Unrealistic you say? Maybe, but not if one is deliberate in that endeavor. One thing I enjoy doing is making people laugh. This involves being vulnerable and willing to embarrass myself at times. One hundred years from now, what difference does it make? You’re right-none, but for those few seconds it makes a difference in someone’s life. Laughter is good medicine. I have a song for every statement/question & I will be glad to sing it for you!

11391619_669336649872989_2880956835133619_nOkay that isn’t singing, and it’s not the 4th of July, but this guy makes me laugh (random)! Hope it brought a smile to your face as well.

I guess it all just boils down to choices. We have control over our thought life and how we spend/react to those 86,400 seconds. I want to choose positivity every day and to find the good/enjoyment in every situation and not just “endure” it. In the meantime, I am going to sip my coffee and make some not so rigid plans for the rest of my day.

On the horizon: 10k trail race this Saturday (11/21), Turkey trot on Thanksgiving Day, Epic Ultra 100 miler 4-2-16, with a few marathons Jan, Feb, March. I plan to enjoy, not just endure my journey to 100 miles.

What is it that you find yourself just “enduring” and why do you think that is?

Life is a journey from the cradle to the grave, make it a memorable one. Stay flexible and you just might get to attend a party with 800,000 others!

untitled (50)Until We Meet Again,

Stephanie

 

 

Product Review: Holloway Sportswear

This will be short & sweet, but I wanted to let you all know that I think I found a new favorite in sportswear. I received my Holloway Electrify shirt & training compression tight this week and couldn’t be more pleased. I took the set on a test drive 3 mile run & the outcome was above average.

The Tights: The tights were comfortable, breathable (4 way stretch wicking technology) with built in odor resistant technology. They didn’t ride up or slide down with the elasticized draw string waist. They didn’t bind in the obvious places. 100% runner friendly.

The Shirt: In a word-comfortable. Also moisture wicking, and stretchable. I LOVE this shirt! The sleeves & overall fit were just the right length, it didn’t slide up or cling to me when I started to sweat. Even after the run, I was completely comfortable & didn’t have that “soaked, wet feeling.”

What is even MORE wonderful about these products is that they are SO affordable! I don’t know about you, but that just makes dollars and CENTS to me!

Both of my items are in X small and the size is very true. Sometimes smalls can be very small or very large, so I was a bit apprehensive about the extra small, but it worked beautifully.

Great fit, comfortable, amazing product!
Great fit, comfortable, amazing product!untitled (48)

 

Give them a looksee and place an order. You won’t be disappointed!

Hollowaysportswear.com

I will upload a video on my channel on YouTube as well about this great product. You can find me at YouTube/Burgeoning Soliloquy

Have much to catch up on, so hurry on back here now, ya hear?

Stephanie