Monday, January 11, 2010

Weekend Winter Fun

Had a fun weekend with some productive stuff and lots of fun stuff too. It was nice to have lots of sunshine after all the snowy days lately. Taylor and Matt Murphy stopped by for a snowshoe run with Derrick on Saturday and it was nice to hang out after. Then on Sunday, another snowshoe run in Frontenac Park. Derrick ran with Keith and Aaron while I puttered along behind on their trail. I was happy to get through the full loop, which capped off a 4h15m week for me! Feeling very good!

A highlight of the weekend was having my cousin Chris, his wife Jaqueline, and son Nicolai from Australia come by on Sunday morning for a dogsled ride. Nic, who is 11, has been eating up winter activities, like skiing at Whiteface Mtn, since they arrived here from Sydney last month. His parents say he must have a lot of Canadian in him the way he is handling the cold, which of course he's not used to at all.

He also just loves dogs, so bringing him on a dogsled ride was a blast, and something he can tell his friends about back home. Brennan and Heather showed him the ropes and I think it was neat for them to hang out with people from Australia with cool accents. Nic rode in the basket while Derrick drove the team, and then he let Nic take a turn on the runners part of the way back. Afterwards, Nic even fed the dogs with Derrick like a true musher, and took it upon himself to go go back out and say goodbye and give scratches before they left. At the last minute Derrick thought to give him the musher hat he wore as a memento of his winter adventure. My mom, who had dinner with them all later that evening, reported that he hadn't taken it off. :) We all had a lot of fun!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Trail and Ultra Running Blog Awards

There are so many to choose from, but here is a sampling of my favourite trail/ultra running blogs and posts. Any worthy additions?

Fav Funny Posts

Marit Fischer's grammatical pennance

Ultra Running Guy and Gal dreaming

Geoff Roes loves the marathon

Gary Robbins takes a trip across the border sans vital documents

George Zack is having a problem with snot

Meghan Hicks goes fastpacking in the land of phalli

Leslie Gerein exposes all in the name of the B.U.T.T. at Mt. Assiniboine

Is Lance Armstrong really running the Pike's Peak Marathon? asks Buzz Burrell (and while we're at it check out his ride in style)

Fav Photos

Jill Homer

Leslie Gerein

Fav Running Dogs

Strider Pup

Nelson and Boober




Fav Race Reports of 2009

JD Begin's 50 Miler at Haliburton

Jamie Donaldson's 24-Hours of Self-Transcendence on a Track...and an AR!

Devon Crosby-Helms' JFK 50 Course Record

Bryon Powell's Leadville Part 1 and Part 2

Derrick Spafford's Haliburton 100, along with David Bohn's pacer report.

Aaron Anderson's first 50k at Haliburton

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

New Year, Fresh Start

I've been increasing slowly, and ran for 40 minutes on New Year's Eve which felt incredible.

After, I took some moments to myself out on our back field before celebrating one of my favourite nights of the year. It was warm with some snowflakes gently falling, and the moon, even behind the clouds, made it light enough to see without a headlamp. I had happy dogs scattered all around me, and I was feeling very thankful for everyone in my life. Over the holidays we've spent some wonderful time with family and have collected nice memories and warm thoughts.

Looking up the hill at the house snuggled among the big pines, it struck me that the cabin in the woods I always dream about is sitting right there in front of me. The realization was typical of this year for me. I did some things that I am very satisfied with, but ultimately the real gift is that in doing them I know that as satisfying as reaching goals can be, happiness is more about being grateful for what we already have.

Best Advice I received when injured...

- Being Positive - After a rough day during our injuries, Derrick reminded us both that thinking positive is helpful and healing.

- Derrick encouraging me that once I get to the point of being in the woods for 30 to 45 or so minutes on a regular basis everything will seem a lot better, which is totally true and helped break the recovery into a manageable thing. Whenever I started feeling like I would never get back, I'd think of this and it helped it feel a lot closer.

- Derrick again, on improving form. If I hit a higher stride rate, I won't overstride. Turnover turnover turnover. Doing a lot of barefoot this summer helps it feel natural.

- Think Spring - Asking Greg Lehman about training and racing again and him telling me to 'think spring'. It made me feel kind of sick to hear, but it was good to know so that I could settle in to the recovery process and accept the reality of it.

Happy birthday to Meela, our millenium sibe and pack leader, who is ten.