Monday, April 4, 2016


This was an off-week in more ways than one. I didn't race for the first weekend of 2016, and I had a really bad long run that left me running terribly through the weekend. I had had some races in mind, but John really needed a break from all of the races/traveling, so I stayed true to my word that it would be a no-race weekend. It was a good thing it was because I was beat ALL weekend. The break was good for me, too,...physically. Mentally, not really, but that's just because I'm addicted to racing. :)

Sunday 3/27/16- I felt pretty good after Brrr-lingame the previous day, so I decided to get in a decent 10 miles. Unfortunately, it had to be in my neighborhood. It's torture to run up and back 10 times, but I got it done. 10.2 miles in a decent 7:18/mi pace. And it's kind of crazy how much elevation gain I got just running my neighborhood. I got almost 800ft of gain, 793 to be exact. Pretty crazy. This run kills me, though. Just so monotonous that I can't do it again for awhile, and if I do, I'll have to do it with music. I would almost rather be on the treadmill where I can zone off in my head for the whole 10 miles. Seriously. I guess this is good training for the 10,000m run on the outdoor track that I have coming up in May. I don't want to even think about how many laps that's going to be. Haha.

The day looked like it would be crummy, but it ended up being pretty decent, so I took John and the dogs on a hike up to B&M Ledge in Madison. It's really just across Rt 16 from Heavenly Hill, with a similar view, but it's a good walk. John actually had a good time. He did some bouldering in one of the pits and made me join him. Haha. He also spent some time sitting on the ledge by himself while I wandered around looking for a clear view of Heavenly Hill (I barely got one). The only problem with this walk is the shooting range right near by. Spot is scared to death of it, and we ended up losing her at the top of the ledge when she took off for home. She ran about 2-3 miles and crossed Rt 16, but there she was, perfectly happy at the house waiting for us when we got back.
Cool ice along the trail

Teaching John how to find springs. They're everywhere this time of year. 

John on B&M Ledge

John with Phoenix

Climbing the boulders
Monday 3/28/16- After almost wrecking the brand new ambulance in a ditch on a slippery, snowy back road in Effingham last week, this week, the mirror adjustor knob broke off in my hand. I think I'm doomed to mess up the new truck somehow! Haha.

It was a gloomy day in general. Our only call was a dead guy (where I had to compose myself and not tell the woman who found him to "calm the fuck down" haha), and then the pouring rain started. Decided to bag my outdoor run after work and came home.  The weather was nasty, so I totally wimped out. Pouring rain with temps in the 30s just isn't my thing. Ran 5 miles on the treadmill. Usual run. Progression with elevation. 7:05/mi pace. Did some arm and ab work after. I was on-call for work, but I never got called in.

Tuesday 3/29/16- It took me forever to decide on a run for today, but I finally settled on a Black Cap/Cranmore Loop with Spot. I knew the trails would be pretty wet and icy in spots, and they didn't disappoint. The entire last mile up the Black Cap Connector Trail was almost all ice which made it slow going. The trail was wet where expected and the run down the Cranmore Service Road was soft, but all-in-all, it was pretty decent for this time of year. I realized almost 3 miles up that I had forgotten to start my GPS. Totally bummed me out since I lost over 900ft of elevation gain to add to Strava (yes, totally obsessed with recording my stuff on Strava!). The run is over 1800ft of gain up and over Black Cap and back down to Thompson Rd via Cranmore and other trails. I've done it enough that I knew exactly how many miles I had lost so I was able to add those into Strava manually. 10.1 miles. Good run. Cold and windy at the summit, so we didn't stay up there long. Got some pics, though. :)

Spot on the Black Cap Connector Trail when I realized I never started my GPS

Spot and me on Black Cap
I rushed back to get to John's homeschool group. We had to rush right from there to my day of pampering. A haircut at the Cut-Off! I only get my hair done 3-4 times a year, so I always look forward to it. I had a glass of merlot while she took care of my mop. It was nice. The only thing that could have made it better would have been if I had a 90 minute deep tissue massage following it... and why not throw in a manicure, facial, the works. Oh I can dream! Haha. It was nice just as it was, and for one of my 3-4 days a year, I got to have nicely fixed hair. :)

Picture doesn't do it justice, but it looked really nice. Should have taken another shot not in my car. Oh well.
The rest of the day was the usual. John to ninja class, then back home. I decided to make a fire in the woodstove.
Trillium's Dialed In by the fire
Wednesday 3/30/16- Made the choice to skip my run on the treadmill before work in lieu of an extra hour of sleep. After the previous week's all-nighter, I figured the extra hour would be more beneficial than a run. I didn't regret it at all that day. I walked our road and did some planks. Then we managed to sleep ALL night. I got the most sleep in a night in I don't know how long! We're losing the transfers out of the hospital on the 11th, and I'll admit that I don't mind. Those long overnights hurt, and I didn't know how much longer I could do it. We'll still do some transfers here and there from Memorial and even get shipped down to Southern NH to do transfers there during the day, but I will be happy to be getting more sleep for the most part.

Thursday 3/31/16- I woke up feeling so good. I was psyched, too, that I got sleep. That meant my run for the day would go as planned. And had I been able to go right then and there for it, I think I would have had a much better outcome. Instead, I still had another 10 hours of work to finish up. It was actually pretty fun day at work. We have good crews there, so I found myself in conversation with someone almost all day. We had one call, but the day didn't drag too much. Unfortunately, though, by the time 5pm rolled around, I was drained of energy, and it was close to 70 degrees and humid. Not weather I'm used to, and I was about to head out on the 2nd most difficult long run that I do. I should have known it was going to go bad, and I should have known I needed to bring water and fuel, but I brought neither. I procrastinated big time just to get out. By the time I left I had an audience of my crew members cheering my on. I had hope that this would go well, but it did not. I immediately felt sluggish. By mile one, which was way too fast, I was already dreading the next 18 miles. This is a big loop from work through Freedom, with quite a bit of climbing before it goes down into Eaton, only to climb, climb, climb up East Madison Rd, and then climb more up Lead Mine. The only thing that helps is that the last 2 miles are mostly flat. I struggled terribly through this run. Bonking hard around mile 13. By mile 14, I was craving water, and I mean craving. I was looking around for springs near the road, but I saw none. I was one hurting puppy those last 5 miles. I made it, though. 19 miles, 7:30/mi pace 1452ft of elevation gain, which looks good until you see my splits all over the place. Last year I ran it so much more evenly and felt good afterward. This time, I felt so sick. I was soaked in sweat and knew I was really dehydrated. Dumb, dumb, dumb. If I hadn't been so loopy, I would have had a coworker give me an iv and fluids when I got back to the base, but I was so out of it that I just chugged a liter of water then drove home. All night, I felt sick. The stomach cramps were constant. I couldn't eat anything. I managed to force down a recovery drink and sip a beer, but the thought of food made me feel nauseous. I spent the rest of the evening on the couch.

Friday 4/1/16- Woke up hoping I was going to feel all better only to find I was still feeling awful. So worn down and with no appetite. I still decided a run would be a good idea, so I took Spot over to the Moat Mineral Site with no plan for what to run. I was feeling weak, so I thought 6-8 would be good. I ended up going a lot farther than I planned, taking it slowly, though. Stopped at Thompson Falls. Just attempted to enjoy my run, even as awful as I felt. I ended up with 10.3 miles and over 1300ft of elevation gain. No wonder I was completely drained by the time I was done.

Thompson Falls

Stopped by a pond

I feel like shit.
I had time to go to Frontside Grind for a latte after the run, but I was still so out of it. I found the one place in there I could lie down. I felt like I was in a fog and still had no appetite. Took me awhile to even sip my drink.
Is it appropriate to lie down in a coffee shop? 
I picked up John from his homeschool group after Frontside. My April Fool's Day joke on him did not elicit enough of an angry response that I expected. I told him there had been a change of plans and that now it was a double race weekend in Rhode Island. Haha. He made a face, but he was almost smiling. I wanted an angry outburst!! Oh well. haha. I guess that's a good sign that he doesn't really hate going to all of my races. :) I was still beat the rest of the afternoon and night so we didn't do anything. My appetite finally returned, and I was able to eat dinner.

Saturday 4/2/16- Woke up with NO desire to run at all, and the loss of appetite had returned. So I made it a super lazy morning. Took my time having coffee and just lounging around. Funny. During all of this, my vices, beer and coffee, were the only things I could stomach. A liquid diet can't be so bad. :)

I eventually forced myself out for a disappointing 3-mile run in the neighborhood. 7:27/mi pace. Weaksauce. I figured it was better than the zero I was going to take. Good thing I ran, though. My appetite came back a little more after I was done, and I was able to eat a huge omelette before John and I left for a Bayle Mt hike.

What was supposed to be a shitty weather day ended up being beautiful. Our hike ended up half in the sun, and John seemed to really enjoy himself. He never complained. It was a little over a mile each way to the top of Bayle Mt from Marble Rd in Ossipee. Perfectly short hike to a pretty awesome view. When we got to the top, John spent about 10 minutes running around in circles on the summit while I snapped photos. We had a really good time on this hike. Laughing and talking. I felt really good about my decision to let the races go this weekend. John was happy.

Sunday 4/3/16- Still beat, I only ran 3 times up and down Heavenly Hill. 3.8 miles. Brought the dogs on the first 2. I was so done with my awful running week. I still managed to squeak out just over 50 miles for the week which I'll take after feeling so shitty for four days and taking a zero. Over 6000 ft of elevation gain with that, so not a bad week at all.

After my run, I cleaned myself up then took John to Portland for the day. Made a quick stop at my favorite beer store, the Bier Cellar. Not a huge store, but a fantastic selection of craft beers. It takes me forever to pick out what I want every time I go in there. From there, we went to Get Air so John could play on the trampolines for an hour. It was so crowded, but he managed to get completely worn out and even wanted to stay longer. From there, we were off to Whole Foods Market where I could shop like I used to in my previous life. The $100 gift certificate I won at the St Patrick's Day 5k made it possible for me to join the lovers of Asparagus Water (see the video below) in spending over that $100 on two reusable bags worth of food. Haha. John loved it, though, since I let him pick out anything he wanted. He kept saying, "I can't believe you're letting me get all of this!!" Haha. It's only because of the gift certificate, John. :)

It was gift certificate day, and we had only an hour to spare to hit the mall after Whole Foods. John wanted to go to Gamestop to spend his gift certificates on some new XBOX One games. He walked out of there happy as a clam with 3 new games and a set of button covers for his controller and declared it his 3rd best day ever! Mom win!! Yes! It was so great that when I finally mentioned we were going to somewhere to eat in Old Port, he didn't complain! This day was great.

I had to hit Novare Res Bier Cafe. Even though I was only going to have one drink, I had to see this beer list. It did not disappoint. I ended up going with the house beer, Novare Riot Careless Whyspers. Very interesting beer, but I liked it. We had a great time here. The ambience was great. The food really hit the spot, and we acted like goofballs. What else are you going to do when you're by yourself with just your kid at a bar?

Korean chicken tacos

Sadly, we had to go back to the boonies after dinner. I just wanted to stay there in the city, but, alas, work beckoned me back, and John's XBOX beckoned him back. :) The weekend turned to be about as perfect as I hoped for John. It was a little too lacking in social life for me, but it was worth it for him. And it will hopefully make next weekend easier when it's back to my racing line-up. For the last year, I had planned next weekend to be a double with the Merrimack River Trail Race on Saturday followed by Doyle's Emerald Necklace (that I sadly missed last year) on Sunday, but things aren't going as planned and I scratched Doyle's off my list for the second year in a row. Two days of traveling back and forth to Massachusetts AND a double race weekend just a week out from Boston made that a really bad idea. So only Merrimack is making the cut this year. Once again, I'll put Doyle's on my calendar for next year and see what happens. I won't be running Boston in 2017, so a race double might not be so bad then. Who knows? That's a year away. So many races and life to get through between then and now. Haha.

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