Friday, June 29, 2012

Blog Book #2 is Here

When I started this blog back in December of 2007 I had absolutely no idea what the blogging world was like and what experiences I would have because of it and the wonderful people I would meet.  It's really too numerous to start naming.  What I can say is it has been a positive experience and I hope to continue to enjoy many more years of it.  Blogging started taking over my scrap-booking life, which has sadly fallen by the wayside.  Blogging became to me a scrapbook and journal all in one and I soon came to realize that these were precious memories I was afraid of losing if something happened to blogger.  So I'm slowly trying to get this stuff in print form.  I did a little research and asked around and liked the company Blurb for compiling my memories and publishing them into book form.  I started with the oldest year of blogging and had the end of 2007 and 2008 published a few months ago. I just recently finished doing all my blog memories and photos of 2009.  Here is just a little glimpse into how it turned out.

Next up will be 2010, which was an incredibly hard year for our family, the year we lost Porter.  I plan to start working on it soon and will take my time as I reflect and remember my youngest son.  I want to complete this book feeling unhurried and allowing plenty of opportunities for my memories to flow. I'm sure there will be many cry sessions and many fond memories of my sweet boy as I compile and create 2010.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

American Fork Half Marathon

This was absolutely the best half marathon I have run so far!
Lots of reasons
  • Won a free entry into this race
  • Bought a new sports bra to help with chaffing issues I have had on every single half marathon
  • Bought some body glide and it worked like a charm, absolutely no chaffing anywhere, SWEET! Why didn't I do this sooner?  I have seriously tried all kinds of options from bandaids to sports tape, to wearing different fabrics, with no success.  A little tube of body glide and voila'!! You can bet I'll be using this stuff like crazy. No more painful shocks in the shower.
  •  The bus pick-up was perfect and as I rode up the canyon I felt pretty calm and ready for attempting a PR, plus it was fun watching the bus driver eat his sunflower seeds at 5:00 am
  •  I got to see my friend Julia who was to be the 2:30 pacer.  Too bad I wasn't wanting to run that slow today or it would have been fun to be in her group.
  • The weather in the canyon was so beautiful.  No jackets needed.  I would have liked it to be just a touch more cooler even.
  • Only one frustration of the whole race and that was port-o-potty lines were too long.  The gun went off and the race begun just as I got in one.  No biggie though since it's chip timed but I hated starting at the very back of the pack.  It probably made me a little more determined to go faster though.
  • I ran, ran, ran my little heart out and caught up to Julia holding the 2:30 sign about mile 1 and then way further down the road, I don't remember what mile, I passed the 2:20 pacer and felt happy about that.  I saw the 2:10 pacer even later in the race but just didn't have the energy to catch her.  My biggest goal for this race was to PR.  I just wanted to come in under 2:16 and so if I could keep my eye on the 2:10 pacer ahead of me I knew I could do it.   A huge advantage I had going for me were the 7 miles of downhill canyon running.  I LOVE running downhill.  
  • Running in American Fork Canyon is absolutely stunning!  Greenery everywhere!
  • Since this was a cancer benefit race there were posters/signs all along the route about people who fought cancer and lived, and sadly some who didn't.  It was a nice distraction from the running to read those and contemplate some of those people's situations.
  • About mile 5 a song came on my ipod that was sung at Porter's funeral called "Homeward Bound".  Such a beautiful song and of course I broke out in tears.  I had to hit repeat on that a couple times to enjoy a couple miles just thinking about my son.  Then I had to get my breathing under control and changed songs. 
  •  The aid station around mile 6 had shot bloks they were handing out.  That was pretty fun!  Then I found a couple more unopened ones people threw on the ground so I picked them up and put them in my pocket for future use.  (My friend Annaleesa will probably disown me as her friend now after reading that part.)  Another aid station a few miles later was handing them out again.  Score more shot bloks!!
  •  Once we got out of the canyon it was beautiful running through a golf course area and along some pretty homes with beautiful back yards.  A certain song came on my ipod with such a great beat to run to that I just kept hitting repeat over and over.  Probably listened to that particular song 20 times! Never underestimate the power of a song with a great beat!
  •  From this point on the rest of this race was just a mental game to keep my legs moving and keep thinking happy thoughts.  The temps were rising and I was getting anxious to get to the finish line.  I knew my hubby and son were going to be there to cheer for me and I was looking forward to seeing their faces.  Here I am coming into the finish line with a final time of 2:15:42.  A new PR by a mere 20 seconds!  Wow, that was cutting it a bit too close! 
  • The after race food was hosted by Kneaders.  They served big, fat french toast with a side of the most delicious syrup, oranges, bananas, milk, and italian ice gelatos.  It all hit the spot very nicely. 

I like to keep my bibs and write the date, distance and time on them.
One thing I wish I would have done is wear my water belt and bring my camera with me because there is a pretty nifty tight pocket that would have held it nicely.  This canyon was just so pretty and there was so much to see and enjoy along the way and having photos of it all would have been awesome. Oh wait......then I might not have gotten my PR.  Sacrifices.   

As long as I keep running I will continue to sign up for this race.  It was an absolutely incredible experience! Thank you so much American Fork Canyon Half Marathon!!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Mondays with Mr. Miles-At the Splash Pad Park

Just posting some photos of my one and only grandson on a day that was warm, relaxing, and enjoyable.
"A grandchild is a gift from above ... one to cherish and to love."
"A grandchild fills a space in your heart that you never knew was empty."
"Grandparents and grandchildren are God's gift to each other."
"You Put the Grand in Grandma."
"Whenever I see you I have an uncontrollable urge to fling open my arms, excitedly shout your name and scoop you up."

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Marathon Training Plan-Week 3 of 16

Week #3

Monday June 18th-Ran 5.5 trail miles and walked 1 mile
on a new trail in Provo Canyon with an old neighbor friend. 

Tuesday June 19th-Rest day-walked 4.5 miles 
with Laurie.  All of my Tuesdays and Fridays will probably say walking with Laurie.  She's always there for me.
Wednesday June 20th-Ran 4.5 miles and walked .25 miles
on the treadmill while watching the Bachelorette.  My boys got me started watching this stupid show and now I'm a little bit hooked.  Seriously, it's just a little bit too dramatic.  I hope she ends up with.....I don't know yet but more than likely it won't work out in the end.  Does it ever on these shows?

Thursday June 21st-Ran 3.5 trail miles to Stewart Falls and back
Sometimes life throws you curve balls and you can learn to swing at them or stand there and strike out.  
I have mentioned before how frustrating it is to want to run on the trails but at the same time not feeling safe out there alone. It's kind of an amazing story to me, or an answer to my prayers, but to make a long story short I have found some trail running companions that may be around for awhile.  I was literally out-of-the-blue added to a local Facebook group of ladies who run all over the trails here at least once a week.  There are 24 members in this group but so far it looks like only about 4 or 5 of them get together weekly. The interesting thing to me is I already recognize 2 of the faces in the group and they actually live in my neighborhood.  So this morning's run started bright and early at 5:30 am with a super refreshing run in the mountains.  Only one girl from the group showed up with her brother, but it was absolutely the most delightful run and I'm looking forward to the next one.  The numbers were low this week since a lot of the gals had run Ragnar over the weekend and were still recovering.  It will be so fun to see where these ladies run and what new friendships will be made.  I hope I can keep up with them!    
Friday June 22nd-Rest day-walked 4 miles
with Laurie on what I like to call Porter's hill. It's a continual climb for 2 miles where we reach the parking lot of Dry Canyon and then turn around and head back down. I'm hoping the downhill training will help for the 4000 foot descent through Cottonwood Canyon, where I will run my first marathon in September.
Saturday June 23rd-Ran 13.1 miles at the 
American Fork Canyon Half Marathon 
This was BY FAR my most favorite half marathon ever run, to date. I will be posting more about this soon.
Sunday June 24th-Day of Rest!
Total Running Miles: 26.5
Total Walking Miles: 9.75

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Legacy Half Marathon-Midnight Run

I think most of my blogging friends are also my Facebook friends so this may be duplicating the information, but I wanted to share it here anyway.  My cousin's husband is a coordinator for athletic events here in Utah. He organizes not only half marathons but triathlons, duathlons, relays, and Santa Claus runs.  His website is and one of the races coming up soon is the Legacy Half Marathon Midnight Run.

 I'm very thrilled to get to run in their race and see some of my family I haven't seen for awhile.  Also, the opportunity to run late at night will be a unique experience for me.  One of the fun things about this race is the use of glow sticks and other glow in the dark items that will be handed out to run with.  It has also been coordinated so that there will be a full moon to enjoy that night as well.  Yep, should be a fun one.  Anybody want to join me?   August 3rd, 2012.  Go check out their website and see what you think.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Jardine Juniper Hike in Logan Canyon

 June 16, 2012-My good friend Jody had a little hike up her sleeve planned and I wanted to go. Plus, this will mean it's her turn to come to my mountain and hike Timpanogos with me.  Next to running, hiking rates right up there with activities I enjoy.  I would have to say that hiking probably even surpasses running.  Because of my new goal with running a marathon in September I just wasn't sure when I would be able to hike on a Saturday because of my addiction to signing up for half marathons which are always on Saturdays and also because of scheduled long runs.  Well, Jody organized this right away on a Saturday I didn't have a race and so I jumped at the opportunity and headed up to Brigham City, bright and early at 5:30 a.m.  I got there at 7:00 a.m. and ate some oatmeal and pears and then we headed out the door.  We picked up her neighbors, Ben and Mary Beth, and their son Tanner and rode on up to Logan Canyon.
At the trail head getting ready to start our hiking-It's always fun to get a before picture.
 Even though this tree is completely dead looking I loved the color and the contrast against the greenery and the blue sky!
 About a mile into the hike
Enjoying the sun just coming over the peaks
 Ben, Tanner, Marybeth, Doran, me about 2 1/2 miles in.
 A slimy waterfall
 Loving this trail and looking so forward to running down it later!
Jody and Doran Shelley-some of the nicest people you will ever meet!
 Oh goodness!  Yes, I'm acting like a little smart alec!  Don't you love my big clown feet shoes?  They are the most awesome trail shoes ever. 
We made it to the top of the mountain but not quite to our destination yet.
 Twinner watches!  They are so sweet!
After 5.2 miles and a 1900 feet elevation change we made it to the Jardine Juniper tree that is supposed to be 1500 years old.
I didn't touch the tree, promise!  I only needed a picture to show proportion.
 All that's alive on this old thing is the very tippy top where there's a little bit of greenery hanging on. Kind of sad.
After you get done looking at the tree look over to the very right of the photo and see the road that continues on up to Bear Lake.  Yes, we are pretty high up.
 We were going to eat our lunch here but there was no shade, so after admiring the tree for a little bit we headed back on the trail to go search for a place to relax and eat.
 Oh this was a much better place.
 At this point it was time for me to say good-bye.  I had told Jody before we hiked that I had a 6 mile scheduled run for today and that I would be doing that going down the mountain.  So off I went and thoroughly enjoyed every moment running in this beautiful place.  Once I got to the bottom I had to run around a campground and the parking lot a few times to get my full mileage for the day which was A O.K. with me. 
This was an absolutely perfect, beautiful day and I always come away from being in nature so invigorated and refreshed and ready to go again.  I'm so glad I was able to spend some time with friends and enjoy something I love so much.
Thank you so much Jody and Doran for inviting me!

If you would like to know more about this old tree I am adding that here for you to enjoy.

Jardine Juniper is one of the oldest living things. It began life long before the pioneers entered Cache Valley, long before Jim Bridger and other mountain men lived here and possibly before the Shoshoni Indians inhabited the valley. It was once thought to be 3200 years old. Then in the 1950's a core sample was taken and the tree was found to be 1500 years old. 

Jardine Juniper was discovered in 1923 by Maurice Linford, also the year that the last grizzly bear in Utah was killed. In the 1870's something alarming happened to the Juniper. Its growth rate slowed by more than two-thirds. We don't know the cause for sure, but whatever happened brought a premature death to the Juniper. 

The Jardine Juniper is still alive, but barely. Jardine Juniper is taking longer to die than most humans live. If you are fortunate enough to see Jardine Juniper, you will notice that it is very sick and on the edge of life. Many people like to take this hike during the summer to see one of the oldest known living things on earth.