Ode to the Taji100 – A Quadrille and Running Update

Dawn’s light blush appears

As I sip this bitter brew

Trying to feel connected

To the desert and to you

Soft heat on my tongue

Lacks sandy grit and dirt

My eyes closed in prayer

As yours stay alert

My peace

For your hurt

This Quadrille includes prompts from Mish at dVerse, Quadrille #74 – Sip and from Beth Amanda at the Go Dog Go Cafe Tuesday Writing Prompt – Light.

Another serendipitous meeting of prompts that helped me to express my thoughts about completing the Taji100. “Complete” might be too strong of a word since I am no where near the 100 miles I was supposed to run for this challenge during February. Between snow days and hubby traveling, finding the time to run was more difficult that usual. Coupled with freezing weather, I just couldn’t bring myself to run with the stroller either – Mommy guilt: it’s ok if I’m running in the freezing cold but I don’t want to put my child through that.

Still, I think about all the men and women in the military who suffer in heat and cold and other uncomfortable (to put it mildly) situations all over the world. I know my difficulties are nothing compared to the trials of being active military.

I asked one of my friends who was in the Army how he can run so fast. His answer was, “You learn to run fast when someone is shooting at you.”

My personal goal now is to run 50 miles before February 28. Yes, I know that’s tomorrow…I’m going out for a 10-15 mile run right after I post this. It’s 25 degrees out but at least there aren’t snipers in my neighborhood.

©️ iido 2019

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Why Run? – A Sonnet and Running Update

If ever there was a reason to run

Just pick one, or more, that gets you to start

Run from the weather – snow, rain or the sun

Run from the pain of a broken up heart

Take one step, then two, and three leads to four

Fast steps or slow steps, or even combine

Just moving forward can settle the score

The gift of running can lead you to shine

Not just with sweat but with thoughts that bring peace

The clarity comes with each passing mile

Arms pumping like flying that brings release

When you’re done hyperventilating – smile

Running from means you’re also running to

Does the Why matter? Just Run. Run for you.

This sonnet was my attempt to join in the fun with Björn at dVerse. I am a tad late with this entry and Mr Linky is closed but if you happen upon this post, and have some thoughts, I would love the feedback! I always feel like my sonnets are too “campy, nursery rhyme-ish”. Maybe it’s the meter or the rhyme, but I feel like I can’t write a grown up sonnet. I bet Shakespeare never felt that way…

Usually sonnets are written about love so this one is about something that I love – running. As with any love story, the longer the relationship, the more ebb and flow in feelings, but for the most part, running has remained a constant in my life where the highs outweigh the lows.

Today, February 1, 2019 starts the Taji100 challenge where I will attempt to run/walk/crawl 100 miles in 28 days. Doing that math, that means about 25 miles a week or about 3.6 miles a day. Being that today brought snow and icy conditions that prevented me from running (and alas, no treadmill at home), I am already behind. I have plans tomorrow to make up some miles though!

I think that is one of the greatest gifts of running – perseverance. Another mile, another two minutes, another 10 steps, run until the next light post. Little victories, little defeats, but in the end…that sense of accomplishment…smile….

Change Scale – A Quadrille and Running Update

I stare at you

And wiggle my toes

Willing you to change

With my mind

While my body remains

On the Couch

Softly spreading

Creaking with complaints

I finally get up to walk

To the fridge

for a cold beverage.

Change is thirsty work.

De Jackson hosts the 2019’s first Quadrille Monday at dVerse (#71) with the theme: Change. Another apropos theme for the start of the year. Thank you De Jackson!

As with a lot of people, I posted last week my health goals for the year. So despite the 30 degree weather, I went for a short run by myself while my kids were at their horse riding lessons. It was so cold that my breath never warmed up enough for me to see it, but I did feel pretty bada$$ running in the cold. Like I was a real runner and nothing was going to stop me from a run.

Of course, I am a “real runner” but my recent spate of not prioritizing running has made me feel somewhat of an imposter. I mean, isn’t family supposed to come before running? And what about my passion of writing? What I’m really striving for is balance! Not the sometimes elusive scale balance (holding an ice cream cone in each hand does not a balanced scale make!) but the even more rare, life balance. Where, oh where, is that life balance? Maybe it’s hiding under the running shoes….

©️ iido 2019

Accountability – A Running Update and Haiku

It’s been a while since I’ve done a post devoted solely to my running life. This year, I have some “lofty” goals for running. I pretty much took it easy last year – I only ran two races: The Love Run Half Marathon and the Hershey Half Marathon.

Despite the fabulous picture above, the Love Run was not a good run. It was my first race coming back from a serious health issue (it’s a woman thing, don’t ask unless you REALLY want the details) and I was not mentally prepared. Thank goodness for a wonderful running friend (shout out to Janelle!) who stayed by my side and helped me push through to the end. I seriously wouldn’t be running now without my running tribe at Moms Run this Town.

I LOVE these inspirational mother runners!

The Hershey Half Marathon was much better! I had a steady training partner (you know who you are…Michele, it’s you!) and we kept to our training plan pretty well. Race day was cold and windy but running with Michele and Heather was fantastic! You can read my race review here.

This year, I’m trying some new ways to meet my health goals. I am posting this for accountability.

Goal 1: Consistently meet my daily move goal on my Apple Watch. Right now, now it’s only set for 350 active calories daily and there are still some days when I don’t meet that goal! Unless I can learn how to type and walk, I’m really going to have to make the time to move during the day.

To help with this, my MRTT chapter is doing a “Step into the New Year” Challenge. We’re counting steps and seeing which team can get the most! Admittedly, I have napped the past two days so my step count is low but starting tomorrow….

Goal 2: Complete the Taji100 in February. My friend, Katie from Cali, has completed this challenge the past few years. I haven’t been able to do the miles because of one thing or another. But this is the 10th anniversary of this virtual challenge and the cause is so worthy that I am determined to get all those miles.

Goal 3: Complete an international race. Well, as international as Canada can be to the US. I’ve decided to sign up for the Niagara Falls Women’s Half Marathon in June.

Goal 3.5: Sign up for at least 2 races this year. Any suggestions for another race?

Goal 4: Incorporate weights and yoga into my workout routine. For the past several years, I’ve focused so much on running and not so much on cross training. Now that I am “middle aged”, I definitely see and feel the muscle loss and flexibility loss as I start down the “other side of the hill”.

To help with this, my lovely hubby gave me personal training sessions for Christmas. My first one is next week so hopefully that will jumpstart this goal.

So, that’s it! If you’ve read this, I’m hoping you will call me out and ask “Have you moved anything else besides your typing thumbs today?” I can’t have my thumbs be the only part of my body that is beach ready!

Finally, a haiku for this post:

Because I tell you

Accountability is

How you can help me

©️ iido 2019

Bridge – A Tanka

You reach out to me

Beckoning across water

Pleading with your eyes

To bridge the gap of anger

But fog hides the other side

This prompt was written for Patrick’s Pic and a Word Challenge #167 – Bridges.

This picture is from a trail I ran about two years ago with one of my good running friends, Nada. It was a new trail that she wanted to check out so we decided to be adventurous on one of our long runs.

The trail was somewhat remote and followed the Susquehanna River. It meandered through corn fields then lush trees. At one point, train tracks followed parallel to the path. The trail abruptly ended at a hunting camp in a small town (that explained the gun fire we also heard along the path). We ran a few miles in the quiet town then headed back.

The bridge was a surprise when we came out of the corn fields and rounded a corner. The path was right against the river and went under the bridge. It was a beautiful sight, emerging from the mist!

I love runs like this! Good company makes the miles fly by! Connecting with people – bridging gaps – is one of the wonderful things about running. You really get to know someone after 15+ miles running along side them.

Maybe next time I’m having an argument with someone, I’ll invite them for a run….

©️ iido 2019

Holiday Cheer or the MRTT Holiday Carol

(Sing to the tune of “Here Comes Santa Claus”)

Here come mother runners

Here come mother runners

With their double wide strollers

Kids are crying

But these moms keep trying

And run for sanity’s sake

Laundry’s calling, dinner is burning

And don’t forget about the Hubs

So let’s run quickly and take a shower

Cuz mamas run this town tonight!

I originally composed this little ditty for Quadrille Monday with the prompt “cheer” for dVerse, however it refused to be limited to 44 words and the song kept on running in my head. I guess it didn’t want to be limited!

And that’s one thing I can say about this wonderful group of women – they are UN-limited in what they accomplish as mothers, runners, workers, partners. I am so thankful to know them and am inspired by them daily. This picture was taken at our annual Holiday bRUNch and gift exchange (courtesy of Nada W. – thank you!). We ran (well, some of us – the rest were guarding the food) then ate and did a gift exchange. The kids who were there also had their own mini party and gift exchange. Holiday cheer abounded! Next year, we’re doing a sing-along!

This is what the holidays should be about – being surrounded by loving and caring people and eating lots of good food! Oh – and running because running with a group leads to being surrounded by the best people and eating! 😁

©️ iido 2018

You Go Girl! (An update)

I’ve been missing…I hope you’ve noticed…

No writing this past week – it’s been a little hectic with guests visiting and schedule changes. Actually that isn’t true: poetry and ideas for this blog have been running through my head but I really haven’t been able to write anything down or to sit and think about how to put the words together. I’ve been working on this post since Sunday – I started around lunch time and I’m just posting it now (Friday??!!!).

I did get to do one (1!!!) run this past week. It was on Saturday with my Moms RUN this Town chapter. A decent 10 miles to prepare for the half marathon I’m running in two weeks. I was out of the house and on my way to meet my running group at 5:30 am – it was me, the highway and slightest sliver of moon. By the time we met up and got moving, the dawn was just peaking behind the clouds.

This run actually wasn’t bad for me. It felt pretty “easy” compared to my previous long run. Maybe it was the weather (overcast and cool vs sunny and humid) but more likely it was the extra sleep I had gotten the night before!

My RB, Michele and I, finished 10 miles in about 2 hours and a bit. One of my motivations was meeting up with the other ladies who were running more/less miles or who were doing a C25K at the local Starbucks. It’s always energizing for me to be around other strong mother runners!

(Photo credit: M. Grotte. Thanks MRTT ladies for letting me showcase your awesomeness for my blog!)

One highlight of the run was when another MRTT member who wasn’t running that morning, drove by us and honked her horn, yelling encouragement out her window. Woohoo!! You go girl!! It’s always nice to be recognized (in a non creepy leering guy sort of way). It’s so important to me to recognize the strengths and accomplishments of other women in my life so being on the other end of that recognition was totally validating and just made me happy!

Guests should be gone and schedules should be back to normal next week. So be prepared for an onslaught of writing (imagine that last line being said with a flashing background that goes in and out and my voice with extra reverb). Imma going girl!!

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This post was originally supposed to be for the Pic and a Word Challenge #155 – Girls. Sorry, Patrick! Ended my streak but I hope to be back on the ball this week!