A Race-Free 2014 is Fine by Me, One Year Blog-Aversary, and Other Thoughts

Ultra Signup1

OK, this is NOT a screenshot of yesterday’s ‘Decline’, because I didn’t grab the screen. So instead I went back to the last time I faced this choice with unfortunately the exact same thing swimming in my head – that I had to click decline.

The Can 50 Ultra is on October 11th, which is a huge competition day for my kids and their marching band … one that I refuse to miss. I had it in my head (and on my calendar) as the 12th for some reason. Oh well.

Will 2014 Be ‘Race Free’?

It is interesting – even as I am doing an average of close to 70 miles per week this summer and have done a half dozen runs longer than 20 miles, meaning my training for the ultra was well in hand … I really don’t have any issues letting it go. For the first race that would have been over our vacation I was sad – I had really gotten my hopes up and mentally psyched.

But something has changed this year – early in the year it was simply not convenient or possible to do any of the races I had thought about. Then I decided not to sign up for Wineglass Marathon because of how it falls with respect to Danny & Lisa’s birthdays (right on top of them, again) – and based on how the weekend looks, it was the right thing! Then with our busy summer the half marathon and 5k I wanted to do fell by the wayside,

And while this happened, my weekly running stayed great, my nutrition is excellent (but eating so much is HARD for me!), and overall my fitness and motivation is staying very high. I don’t NEED races right now – they add stress rather than joy. My priority is always ‘family first’, and while running is very important to me … racing is just ‘nice’.

I have one possible race left, and it is after marching band and birthday season … so it is possible. It is a half marathon, and the average temperature the last two years I have run is 25F. Welcome to winter! haha

Hey – You Guys Never Told Me Bloody Nipples Were ‘Hot’!!!

This Friday I posted this on Instagram:


Yeah, I had a ‘band aid fail’ – I forgot to grab mine in my bathroom and ended up grabbing a couple of cheapies from the pantry … and one of them held. If you peek below you’ll see I did 10.25 miles on Friday … and I KNEW what I would see about halfway through. Ugh. That happens, no biggie (other than the shower ‘first contact’ fun).

BUT – the funny thing?

When I posted to Instagram, within the first half hour while we were eating breakfast I got a couple of ‘Likes’, so I tapped on ‘notifications’ and saw names I didn’t know …

Turns out both were young women who had ‘recently single’ in their descriptions, who started following me as well.

So … why didn’t all of you younger ladies tell me that bloody nipples made you irresistible to young single women? I have so many questions for you – to the recently engaged … did your engagement hinge on bloody nipples? If you are single, did a lack of bloody nipples factor into it? It all just made me realize how out of touch Lisa and I are with this whole thing – we just thought they looked awful and were sore.

Can’t believe you guys have been holding out this critical information on me … πŸ™‚

One Year on this Blog

Yesterday (Sept 13th) something happened – the blog turned one year old. I had a ‘welcome’ post, and then a post the same day titled “Everything Clicked … Until it Didn’t, But That Was OK.

That first post was about feeling great after a run … then having real life come colliding in! That happens so often to many of us, and there is nothing we can do – except appreciate the way that our runs help us cope and deal with life, giving us strength and energy to push forward and the mental balance to work through them.

It would be more than two weeks until my next post, and then I slowly got into a routine from there. During the first month I got THREE comments – two from Megan and one from Sarah. Thanks for that critical early support!

Weekly Running Summary

This was a weird week – the weather ranged from cold and foggy to warm and humid and everywhere in between. It has that whole ‘transition to fall’ feel, but nothing in the 40s yet.

So how did I do? Let’s take a look:

Sunday: 7.5 miles on ‘Easy Run’ Day – after my 23.5 miles on Saturday, a casual run was in order!
Monday: 10.5 miles
Tuesday: 9.25
Wednesday: 10.5 miles
Thursday: 9.75 miles
Friday: 10.25 miles after work
Saturday 14.5 miles with hill repeats

Wow … I really didn’t think this was a huge week, but I did 72.25 miles this week . It will be interesting to see how things go while I am on my business trip this week.

‘Programming’ Notes

Oh – I didn’t mention that yet? OK, so this week I am attending a statistics conference – I know, I know, contain your excitement! I am really looking forward to it in several ways – it is just outside of Raleigh NC (in Cary, home of SAS) and the forecast looks pretty great, I have a colleague giving one of the talks, and two old friends neither of whom I have seen in more than 20 years attending and giving papers! Going to be amazing.

At the same time, I think it is clear that my relationship to the blog (and blog world) has changed this summer. I have narrowed my reading, and my writing has started to ‘take the weekends off’ and not always flow according to schedule. At this point I can only see this continuing, so here are two things I am doing:

– I have cut way back on my subscriptions, and my commenting even more. I realized that I had not commented on a few posts that I REALLY wanted to comment on … I was getting bogged down on other things. I will still read all of my faves with email subscriptions to my ‘must reads’, others mostly through Feedly or WordPress. As Judith noted, that makes it work well … unless blogs block it. Sadly, if you block reading without hitting the site, unless you are in my email blog list I will be gone. Sorry. 😦 I want to do it all … there just isn’t the time.

– I have no plans to blog this week at all.

– Starting next week I am going to try a 2 posts per week routine, and see how that goes. I had planned that when I came back from several days away, but suddenly blasted out a bunch of posts. That really isn’t working for me. I think a Sunday & Wednesday schedule might work … we will see.

Tell me something great from YOUR week?

23 thoughts on “A Race-Free 2014 is Fine by Me, One Year Blog-Aversary, and Other Thoughts

  1. Family obligations come first.

    I completely understand the feeling on racing and I am going in that direction more and more. I am wanting to enjoy the running more and if racing causes too much stress, I loose out on the enjoyment of my running – I prefer to enjoy the running.

    Social media and blogging need to be done on your terms, not anyone else’s. There will be ebbs and flows in your interest/time to do either and you will have to make tough choices on what/how much you will do them. You have an healthy attitude toward using social media and although I will miss reading your posts-they are great, I will look forward to when you do post.

    Enjoy the running down south and enjoy your conference, I am sure that the getting with old friends and making new ones, will be better than the subject matter – Stats ugh – not my cup-o-tea πŸ™‚

    • haha – It is funny, that my primary degrees were in electrical engineering and optical physics … but I got so annoyed at how poorly people handled data that I took courses and got a degree in statistics. My job still entails all three, but mostly focused on statistics … neither of my kids share my interest πŸ™‚

  2. Happy Blog-aversary! I had no idea about the bloody nipple thing:) But then again its been 10 years since I’ve been single so maybe I’m just out of the loop as well.
    I think its awesome that you have found yourself in such a good place with running even without doing any races. It sounds like you definitely have you priorities in order!

    • Thanks Lisa – we had a good laugh about it on Friday morning. I don’t generally hash-tag things, but did that time and those tags must have triggered a like. Weird.

      I think over the last couple of years as I have gotten comfortable with my body and longer running as a regular event I am just loving the running. So long as I can keep that up I am happy!

  3. Running, blogging, travelling, so many things you can step away from whenever you want for as long as you want, and then go right back to it whenever you want. Some things may have changed in the interim, but the fundamentals will still be there. With family, not so much. You’ve got to spend your time in the way you value the most, makes perfect sense to me!

    • Also, kind of funny, as soon as I read your post, I went to the next in my reader, which happened to be entitled “I love races” and began with the following: “I love absolutely everything about the racing sceneβ€”> A million runners everywhere, people accomplishing their goals, everyone cheering each other on and a ridiculous amount of different running shoes/running outfits for me to covet.” (http://www.hungryrunnergirl.com/2014/09/i-love-races.html). Haha, different runners with different preferences!

      • I have to confess that is one blog I haven’t read for a long time for many of the reasons I have written about here. Nothing wrong with loving races, though …

  4. I completely understand this as well. I just had too much on the plate this past year and actually just ran my first race in over a year today. I didn’t even realize it had been that long because I quite enjoy my running even without the races. But today was awesome and for a fantastic charity. I absolutely understand the scaling down. There is only so much you can do. Enjoy the conference!

  5. It sounds like you are having a really busy but rewarding week. That’s awesome and congrats. A year of blogging is a great accomplishment as well. I’ve had a lot on my plate as well lately so I completely understand running around like a chicken with their head cut off. πŸ™‚

  6. I really admire how much emphasis you put on your family life, and I’m glad you’re doing what you need to do. While I love blogging, I do often feel obligated to read and comment on EVERYTHING, which is really hard. It’s also hard sometimes to share a thought or idea that hasn’t always been expressed in a previous comment, which makes the whole thing even more of a struggle. Anyway, enjoy your family, your runs, and your reduced obligations–I’m sure it will be wonderful for you!

  7. I had a race free 2011 and 2012 and I was completely okay with that…like you said, family first. Plus, racing adds a lot of stress for me and I’d rather just go out for a run when it works into mine and my family’s schedule, I have no doubt you will do your ultra when the timing is right. I have actually done more races this year than ever before, simply because I signed up for that trail series and a 5k with my SIL. I totally wasn’t planning on that at the beginning of the year! I am impressed with your mileage, you are totally rocking it!!

    Congrats on your 1 year anniversary, I am so glad we “found” each other via blogging. I totally understand your having to step back from posting/reading blogs, I have found myself doing the same, there just isn’t enough time in the day/week to read everything I want to and post. Life ebbs and flows so we just have to go with it and do what we can!!

    Have a great week Mike!

  8. Happy Blog-iversary! That is really exciting–a lot of commitment and dedication, similar to training. I love reading your editorials and personal posts and opinions, and I am so glad that Laura brought us together. If you haven’t been able to tell, I, too, and taking a little bit of a step back from the obsessive commenting that I used to be able to do–it doesn’t mean that I’m not reading or paying attention, or even that I don’t have something to save. It just means that I am saving my voice so that it retains some of its power, as it were. And I can’t write guest posts for you all the time! But don’t be a stranger!
    I have such a long history of competing through horses, soccer, and now running. But I don’t run in order to race. I pick a few races through the year, but they are more just benchmarks for me, and a chance to feel special for a moment, to have a new experience. I don’t know if I would need to do so if I had more options for paths and such. It just gives me more options πŸ˜€

  9. LOL! Single ladies LOVE bloody nipples – didn’t you know? πŸ˜‰ and how do you get free race invites!? I want to be loved and invited! (maybe 13.1 miles and not 50 though ;)) and has it been a year already?! Time sure freaking flies!! πŸ™‚ Hoping this coming year to be an awesome one for you, I always look forward to your blog posts!

  10. Happy blogiversary to you πŸ™‚ I’ve been blogging for no even half that time and definitely seeing now how challenging it is to keep up with it (and still show up for real life, that is.) I’ve been trying to stick to 6 posts a week and I think that will have to dip to 5. I need to take the weekends off!

    I’m sure I’m in the minority, but winter races are my favorite. A half marathon in 25 degrees sounds nice, minus the waiting beforehand, where all my extremities go numb. Running without the pressure of a race is a nice feeling though, and one I would like to experience again after this marathon!

  11. All of your choices are great and I support you 100%. If I’m not in your email inbox, it’s ok, I know at some point you will pop over when you’re able to do so.

    Family comes first and I think you made some really smart choices for yourself!

    I have found myself overwhelmed in trying to keep up a schedule lately too. It’s really hard to do “all the things” lately.

    You are always an inspiration to me with your running, and high mileage weeks. GREAT job!!

    Happy Blog-A-Versarya nd enjoy your work trip, I’ve always wanted to go to NC and the south! YOu’ll get to see it the coolest way possible: RUNNING!!!

  12. I never knew I was 2/3 of your first month’s comments. I guess I know I good blogger when I see him / her! πŸ™‚ Congrats, a week late! And … welcome back from the conference! And … yes, I’ll forgive you if 2014 is race-free πŸ™‚

  13. AHAHAHHAHAAHAHA! Oh, IG likes!!! And the comments we all sometimes get on there, which don’t make any sense at all. I guess some people are desperate for new followers lol! Also, HAPPY BIRTHDAY to your blog! To many more! xoxo

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