Going longer… Getting stronger….

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This weekend had a little bit of everything in it. I spent Friday evening with friends at two different art exhibit openings, Saturday with my spiritual community and Sunday out in nature. I even got a chance to cook some nice meals for myself and get enough sleep. While my house is not spic ‘n span, it is not too shabby. I can rest well tonight and go to work feeling caught up. Now, if I could just have several more 3-day work weeks, I’d be golden.

July 4 Long Run….

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My running training is going along swimmingly…. swimmingly in sweat that is. But I’ve been waiting and waiting for it to get warmer, and now it’s here. Unfortunately, we are having a lot of Louisiana-style heat and humidity up here, and it’s making long runs in particular, brutal. For the second time in the last few weeks, I started my long run at 4:30 AM so I could get it in before the heat index started rising. Jessica is doing the same thing in Tulsa as she is at the peak of her marathon training. It’s even hotter there. We laughed that we waited forever for the cold weather to go away, and now we have to hide from the sun and run under cover of darkness.

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The last three days were pretty nice, though. Friday and Saturday in particular were amazing. Unfortunately, I didn’t have to run either of those days. So, this morning I drove to the woods near Lansing to do a short trail run. I’ve added a trail half marathon to my training schedule, and I wanted to check out the course at Sleepy Hollow State Park.

Since it was a shorter run, I took Ashok. She was really happy to get out. For the last six weeks, I’ve had lots of guests, and we haven’t really been doing dog-friendly activities. Besides, it’s been so hot, she’d be miserable. But today we’d be in the shade and would get started before the heat really set in.

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This little park was lovely, and its main feature was a big fishing lake. We were almost the only people on the trails, and we knocked out the four miles at right about an hour. We hiked the rest of the way back, and it was so relaxing to walk in the woods without having to rush. I think we both needed it.

After our run, I changed clothes and we headed home. Since we were so close to Lansing, I decided to drive in and see our state capitol. I’ve never been to Lansing, and a friend of mine wasn’t too complimentary of it. I managed to find Old Town, and it had a nice little park by the river and some interesting restaurants. I sat outside of Punk Taco with Ashok, and I ordered the “Trust Us” tacos which turned out to be fabulous. (You get what they bring ya, get it?) The corn tortilla was obviously home-made, and the pork, sauce and cheese were delicious. I had planned to eat at the BBQ place next door, but I think I made the better decision getting the tacos. It was just enough, and the flavors were extraordinary.

They even had a fish ladder to help salmon over the waterful in Old Town!

I run the trail half marathon in a month. After running 4 miles today (about 1/3 the distance), I see that running that trail half is going to be brutal. I’m going to have to wrap my mind around the effort. At this point in the training – above 10-mile runs – the mental effort of running starts to get difficult. The physical gets tougher, too, but it’s my mind that starts asking “what’s the point of doing this?” I had forgotten about this part of it. At least in the trail run, I’ll have nature around as a distraction, and my mind will be occupied looking for roots and holes that could trip me up.

Well, y’all have a good week. If Jessica increases me again this week, I’ll be at half marathon distance. I’m trying to think cool to drum up some cooler temps on long run day!

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One thought on “Going longer… Getting stronger….

  1. Pingback: Tomorrow: A Trail Half Marathon | Midlife Moments

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