It’s the First Official Day of Summer! How Will you Celebrate?

I. LOVE. Summer. I love the warm weather, the sitting outside, the sweating when I run, BBQ’ing…okay, okay, drinking beer while I watch someone else do the actual work, swimming, sitting by the pool. I just love it all! It’s quite possible that summers in Park City alone were enough to make the move from the Midwest worth it. No humidity? Yes please!

Park City celebrates the “kick off to summer” in a pretty unique fashion. On the first Saturday after summer has officially begun, all of the restaurants on Main Street (the most popular street in the town) line the streets with tables and serve up their best dishes and their finest wines. Just kidding, not their finest wines, I just thought that sentence had a nice ring to it. There is plenty of wine though. You have to make your reservations for this extraordinary event pretty far in advance and you better believe we jumped right on that!

Savor the Summit '12This is a picture from Savor the Summit last summer. That just happened to be a stroke of good luck on timing and a mis-scheduled reservation. There really is no better way to celebrate the beginning of summer than bringing the whole town together for dinner, drinks, music, the works. It will even be worth the 900 miles I will need to run on Sunday to work off the face stuffing I plan to do on Saturday 🙂

 

Saturday morning though, that’s when the real fun begins! Aleck and I will be running the Color Me Rad 5K! At first, this was something I was totally excited about. 3.1 miles filled with color bombs seems like I don’t need to stress about my timing, ya know. But now that the race is tomorrow, I’m a little bit on the fence about having “color bombs” thrown at my face multiple times. What kind of start is that to your day? A stranger throwing things at you. Who knows, maybe I’ll love it so much I’ll ask Aleck to run along side me on my next marathon and throw color bombs at me the whole way. While highly doubtful, people seem to live for this color run nonsense.

I think this past week I have been able to run more than I have in about a month now. It’s been wonderful and exhausting all at the same time. I did a 6 mile trail run Tuesday evening, which is a run that always kicks my butt. A little over the first half of the trail is a climb, gaining 1,500 feet in elevation. The only thing that makes it worth it for me is knowing that once I hit the top, the rest of the trail is downhill until I stumble to my car and make some dramatic scene like I just finished running up and down Everest. I’ve also been able to get in some mountain biking, which I self diagnosed as a good treatment for my knees. Whether it actually is or not, who knows.

image (1)photo (16)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Enjoy your first taste of summer! I know I will!

Sarah

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I’m Back! Training for Half Marathon 2

FINALLY, I can get a few miles in on foot without finishing the run in tears and frustration! It’s still not easy, but I am just happy to be back out there. I’m also happy because I finally got an answer to what’s going on – – plica syndrome. It’s not something I have ever heard of before, but after some indepth (maybe a little too much WebMD) research, I get a little uneasy every time I think about it. According to the doctor who broke my little heart, this is something that can end in surgery but does not 100% of the time, so he highly suggested physical therapy. I politely told him that is far from the budget of a 24yr old, who just moved, bought a new bike way out of her price range and doesn’t know how to stop shoe shopping. So, I opted for some “on my own” type physical therapy, some good ice packs, endless amounts of icy hot & IBUProfen and my favorite part, the mandatory new running shoes (wahoo!) Also, my favorite part of his diagnosis, running is not out of the question, as long as I’m smart about it and listen to my knees when they are screaming at me to just stop already!

However, there are a few things I wish people would have told me when all of this began that did not involve the phrases “You’re stupid” “Why are you still running” “Stop running”. In my opinion, it’s pretty fair to say that most anyone who is passionate and/or serious about whatever activity or sport it may be, it is not an easy task to just – -stop. You go through the training and push through the pain to see it pay off in the end, when you finish a race you never thought possible, or you get that PR you’ve been working so hard for. The list of things I wish I would have known is just as long as the list of things I wanted people to stop saying. I painfully regret not taking it a little easier a little sooner than I did. Looking back, the day it started I should have educated myself on what it could have been and how to treat it the best I could, without becoming a couch potato. After all the pain this stupid thing has caused me and all of the pain that I know is yet to come, the one thing I would want to hear if I had to do it again would be someone telling me (and yes it may need to be in a loudish tone) “HEY, be smart moron!” Moron gets me every time. But seriously, all I did was aggravate the injury further and by overcompensating on my – – what was then – – good knee, I injured that one as well. I’m now working with two bad knees, both with plica syndrome and one with a knee cap that is no longer straight and in it’s place.

My wonderful doctor also did not rule out running another race at the end of July as long as I feel like it won’t cause any further injury. So that is my goal, to run Race #2 on July 27. That is about 7 weeks away. It’s more training time than I gave myself for Race #1, one of these days I’ll fit the normal 12 week training schedule in…maybe.

Up to this point, the furthest I have run since the Dino Half is about 7.5  miles, and that was just 2 days ago. Yikes. I am still just as determined as I was the first time around, maybe even a little more. As I mentioned in a previous post, I have also been mountain biking in my off time, which keeps me positive that I didn’t lose the leg muscle and endurance I would have by just sitting around. As of right now, I am trying to only run every other day and mountain bike on the off days. I am also trying to do as little road running as possible and stay on the dirt trails where the impact of  my foot strike is a little less harsh on my knees. With the exception of my run this morning (ow), I’ve had little issues with my current training plan. Next weekend is the big Color Me Rad 5K with Aleck, so I’m feeling the need to be in my best shape that day. I don’t know if I could move past it if he beats me…

Anyway, I’ll be sure to post the results of that race, if they’re in my favor of course, and for now here are some pretty pictures of PC from some of my mountain biking adventures.

It is a very green Spring in PC!

It is a very green Spring in PC!Mountain Dog

Have a great weekend and get a good run in for me!

Sarah

Punxsutawney Phil Is In Trouble

The first day of Spring has finally sprung and here in PC, Utah…it’s snowing. Surprise, surprise. I can’t be too upset though, this past weekend and earlier this week we had incredible weather. That incredible weather made for some pretty awesome trail runs. One of my favorite trails even cleared up enough that I could run the front side of the mountain. The warm weather mixed with my awesome, new, fantastic, wonderful purchase of JT’s new album onto my iPod made for a ton of PR’s beat and a whole lot of miles put on my favorite running shoes, my New Balance Minimus Trail shoes that I love so much. These ones were originally purchased to ease myself into Minimus running. They have a 4″ heel to toe drop rather than a true 0″ drop. I ran quite a bit in zero drop Minimus last Fall and even a little bit indoors this Winter, but I decided it might be best to ease myself into this type of running again with the 4″ drops. That was a good call on my part, my legs were on fire for days after these runs! But it was the good kind of burn, the kind where you just feel your muscles becoming more defined and strengthened with every step. One of my top 10 feelings for sure!

My New Balance shoes at the top of one of my favorite trails. Sunshine come back!

My New Balance shoes at the top of one of my favorite trails. Sunshine come back!

A bridge I ran under when I still liked Phil. Giant icicles and a raging creek, I don't hate it.

A bridge I ran under when I still liked Phil. Giant icicles and a raging creek, I don’t hate it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The good news? It looks like I’m not the only one upset with Phil, the groundhog. This article from The Onion had me laughing for hours, check it out here.

Look at him. He just looks like he's ready to piss me me off.

Look at him. He just looks like he’s ready to piss me me off.

*Enjoy! – – Especially those of you with Spring weather!

Spring – – Is That You?!

Finally! I was able to put on my favorite pair of trail running shoes and hit the dusty trail instead of the treadmill! Okay, so it wasn’t so much a dusty trail as a snow covered trail but hey, I was outside, the sun was shining and it was warm. I’ll take it! Before I moved out here I don’t think I would have even considered running on top of half iced/half melting snow, but I’m totally glad I got outside and did it. It was a completely different experience from any other run I’ve been on, which is exactly what I have been looking for. To give you an idea of what it’s like if you’ve never done it, it’s comparable to running on sand. Which yes, I am aware that people do that, but man is it harder than I thought. Not only that, but about half way through you hit the side of the mountain that the sun beats down on every afternoon, which was a day and night difference from the first half of the run – – shin deep mud puddles. All in all, it was a great 6 mile run. Besides the scenery being pretty impossible to beat, my legs were burning so bad halfway through, by the time my mind could focus on anything else I was finished!

Skid Row Run

The beginning of the trail – “Skid Row”

Lost Prospector Trail Run

Finally made it up the 1.5 mile hill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*Enjoy!

My First Mountain Run

I’ve always considered myself to be a pretty decent runner, I played sports my whole life and I never gave up that active lifestyle (except for short stint in college…but c’mon!). Unfortunately for me, when I moved to the mountains of Utah from the flat lands of Missouri I was in for a big surprise. No one could have ever accurately warned me what the difference in not only altitude but terrain was going to do to me! Let me start with the biggest issue, I recently started running in New Balance Minimus Trail shoes, which I absolutely LOVE, but running up a rocky mountain in paper thin shoes…see where I’m going with this? Ow! So at that point I was running on what felt like two feet full of broken bones and punctured toes, I felt like it was never going to end! What’s next? OH! Just a mile long hill bring me back up 1200 feet? The best part was, I had no idea this part of the trail was here. I just kept running, painting and heeling over on turns thinking there was no question, this really did go on forever. Let me fast forward through the pain and agony that was the rest of this run. When I finished I checked my Strava Running App to see what I had accomplished in this grueling time frame – – 8 miles in over 2 hours. That was a harsh reality check.