Wednesday, April 30, 2008

A Good Day

The art of the parsnip:

Ran yesterday, rested today.
The art of the sunset.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Pilgrims in the Snow

Snow and fine sneet/icy snow during the whole morning
Temperature during the race today: 34 degrees (that's thirty four degrees!)
Temperature last year: 68 degrees (is that 2X as warm??)
Today the wind was recorded at 26 miles per hour, but perhaps gusting more

La Nina, we've had enough!
Get in Gear 10K, beginning at Minnehaha Park in Minneapolis, up the West River Road to the Lake Street Bridge, across the Mississippi River to St. Paul, then south on East River Road (following the Twin Cities Marathon route for a time), and south to the Ford Bridge, across the river again to Minnehaha Park.

Get in Gear is a wonderful family rite of spring (most years!)
Park and streets are full of children of all ages, including those little little folks in strollers. Even in the wintry weather today, families came out.
Here, you can see the youngsters racing to the finish of the 2K.
You can click to enlarge pictures.
No personal pictures of the 10K ... we were wearing exactly the right windbreakers and ear covers, we were only moderately chilled.
We ran, we finished! We celebrated.

PS Whole foods was giving away a couple of new-to-us gluten free products: "Enjoy Life" nut and gluten free snack bars and snickerdoodles.
The products have no wheat, gluten, soy, nuts... and we were delighted to see, also no potato (potato flour, often a cheap empty filler in gluten free foods).

For information about today's race:

Friday, April 25, 2008

More about Bicycles and Runners

See DC Spinster and his post "Magnificent Menace."

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Red Winged Blackbirds on Gateway

Gateway yesterday afternoon: 8 2/3 miles
Back to the Brooks Burn shoes, no new blisters, last week's are healing well.
Gorgeous sunny day in the 60's after the long El Nino winter, how could being out running not make it the best day of the year.
Roller bladers are starting to come out, now that the last of the icy slush patches are all melted.
Dozens of bicycles
.. a few racing by with no "on your left" warning... but most very courteous... as were we.
What a fabulous day to be aerobic outdoors.

Red winged blackbirds.... dozens of them in a few trees near a pond. The red winged blackbirds singing in a magical fugue with the croaking frogs in the pond.
I haven't seen so many red winged blackbirds in one place in my life (and I grew up in Iowa!)
You can click on the picture to enlarge that bird.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Earth Day: Stop Global Warming

LA NINA graced us with quite a long winter.
Today the ice finally went out on our nearest lake ... almost a record for late.
Global warming marches on.
Because China manufactures a major proportion of products we purchase, I hope somebody is concerned the contribution of China as well as the United States to global warming, use of energy, and employee policies.

Polar bears, virgin forests ... so many issues ... so much to care about.
Happy birthday Sweet Awesome Earth.

PS We loved watching the Boston Marathon on television today... Remembering.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

A Good Part

In an interview, Bob Harper, author of "Are You Ready" (to lose weight), suggested that people who want to lose weight might think of a part of their body that they like... Even maybe they like their feet.

I was thinking maybe eyes.. or hair ... or dimples ... or yes, maybe feet.
I can run: I like my feet!!

Sweet Pea was thoughtful for a few minutes.

Then in answer to: what part of your body do you like, she said,

"My heart"

Bless you, Sweet Pea.
You have a good heart, in every way!

Found a picture from the past: Sweet Pea at 3 years old, Christmas in Osseo.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

20 Miles in Summer Weather

Ouch! blister measuring more than 2 inches in most directions... and 3 large blisters on the other foot.
Note to self: remember everything you know about blister prevention and don't try a new model of shoe on a 20 mile training run.

In Minnesota we know sometimes we skip spring and go right to summer (and then we might get snow the next week.) We started out yesterday on Gateway in jackets... and shorts, later shedding jackets.

The temp was in the high 60s all day.
The WIND was reported to be 29, and we witnessed noisy huge gusts much stronger.

Here is Sweet Pea at Mile 8. We parked between Mile 8 and Mile 18 and covered the distance both ways twice for a total of 20 miles.

Dear Runner Dude.. always a cheer to know we will be meeting him somewhere along the way.

This new underpass for the trail was built last year. We used to have to wait, look both ways again, and run like hell across that road.

Saw 4 egrets yesterday, this one in flight... a testimony to awesome creation.
Also saw 5 fuzzy caterpillars on the trail. Thought we usually saw those in the fall.
And a tiny little brown snake that froze when we stopped to look at it.
Wishing I knew bird songs better: am sure we heard chickadees, cardinals, red winged blackbirds.
And OH the frogs!! Little ponds were alive with the thunderous mating croaking that we could hear even in the roar of the wind in the trees.

This is me at the north end of the trail. Notice me dressed for SUMMER!
Twenty miles yesterday and we are ready enough to enjoy a marathon.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Gateway Getting Better

Miles 8-11 had been plowed after the last snow.

First EGRET sighting of the season!

Sweet Pea and I ran/walked about 6 miles yesterday. This was the only slush we saw on the trail. The temp was just over 40, but
spring IS coming. Tomorrow it will be in the 60's.

This is me in heavy winter jacket, just standing around waiting for Super Runner Dude to come running up the trail to meet us and cheer us on.
Regularly, we have been at the indoor track and out on the street in the neighborhood and doing resistance training.
For the next week, though, we really will get serious about training.
Stuff going on here lately. I have showed up absent in the blogosphere, and have lots of reading of interesting posts to catch up on now. Appreciating all patience.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Great Day on Gateway

Spring came!! Bright and sunny today.
60 (sixty!) degrees by the time we finished.

Gateway trail is a paved trail with a gravel horse trail along it.
Horse folks were out today.
Bicycle riders were on Gateway today... including some small children on their bikes.
Many runners on the trail today... some just enjoying the day... and some clearly training for some upcoming race.

You may note that I did not say that the entire 8 inch snow of just 5 days ago had entirely melted.
A substantial portion of the trail was at least partially snow covered.
But Minnesota folks are hearty, stubborn, and really tired of winter.

We parked the car at the horse bridge and made our way about 4.2 miles up to Pine Point Park at the north end and back..
for an 8.4 mile round trip. Note that the distance is in
miles now that we are outdoors.

We ran.
We walked.
We tramped through a lot of snow.
It was slippery, but none of us fell.
You may note that I did not say the roller bladers or the baby strollers were out today.

As you can see here, some of the trail was clear and dry.
A young woman on horseback was training her doberman to accompany her.

And a delightful surprise along the way: There's our Runner Dude running toward us.. when we thought he was taking the day off.

This woman must be training for a horse show.
By this time we had shed jackets.

Here we are back within a mile of the car... and some of the deeper snow.
Little dogs were not so grateful to be walked here.

What a day!
Oh glorious outdoor run!
Best day of the year!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Monthly trip to Mayo Clinic

You can see the results clicking on the blog name.
Don continues to update his Myeloma Hope Blog.

When we returned home, Sweet Pea and I did a couple of miles in the neighborhood.
The end of the best day of the year: I treasure every one.

End of this day

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

April Fool !!

Eight inches of heavy wet snow.... and then the sun came out this morning. . . making the world a fairy land.
I haven't been much of a volunteer for the Minnesota tourist industry lately.
I should officially note here that on one recent April Fools Day the ice on the nearest lake had been out for a week already.
Bluest sky
We 2 ran 12K on the indoor track this morning. Then Sweet Pea got a shot of me shoveling snow in my running shorts.

Nice & warm!
A couple of customers at the feeder after the big snow.
Hairy woodpecker