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This year has been a roller coaster when it comes to how I feel about running.  Rang in the New Year eligible to join the Half Fanatics.  I joined a new training group & had some strong training runs; I also met a GREAT running buddy.

Then March came in like a lion & I hated running.  Overwhelmed with my schedule, I let running fall to the side.  Several times I tried to find motivation to finish training for Big Sur.  Do I run as far as I can & let them sweep me off the course?  Do I not show up at the starting line?

I hated running.

So much, I was ready to walk back to my car from the starting line for spring races – twice.  The medals I received for those races were not worth the 13.1 miles it took to earn them.  And the miles upon miles of tirade playing out in my brain.

I went into Rainier to Ruston unsure I could even run a mile.  It had been a few months since I had really run and the treadmill miles did not add up.  Running outside again was a huge godsend.  Running well with Wink (her nickname until I can come up with something better), training for a half marathon in September, the joy started to come back.

Enter Ragnar: Northwest Passage.

I don’t know if I’ve ever had so much fun.  Beyond that, I’m really happy with my performance.  I was worried I would peter out with my last leg.  I ran slower & slower with each leg in Rainier to Ruston and I had less mileage each leg!  With Ragnar, my mileage would increase each leg, culminating in a 5.8 mile leg.

Something else happened over those 200 miles.  I don’t know if I can even explain what happened.  What I do know is that between my first leg Friday and saying good-bye to my team Sunday morning, I was transformed.  That feeling has stayed with me all week.  It’s the same feeling I had after completing the 30 day yoga challenge.

Whatever ‘it” is, I hope its around to stay.


A few years ago my co-worker told me her uncle was running from the Canadian border in a 200 mile relay.  At the time, I thought the idea was insane, preposterous… unbelievable.

That was all before I was exposed to the world of running.

And this weekend, I will be joining a group of strangers (soon to be friends) for the same crazy adventure.  This adventure starts tomorrow!  Holy running shoes Batman!  I’m sure like all adventures, they seem like they are far in the distant future and then BAM!: one finds oneself on the eve of fun.

I’m part of Team Long Distance Relay-tionship. Click on the photo to meet my teammates.

I’m not ready!  I’m training ready but I am not packed.  I don’t even know what you bring or what you pack your stuff in.  Is a weekend bag enough or should I pull out my trekking backpack?  Do I need a sleeping bag?  Blanket?

If you’re on twitter you can follow us at #RagnarLDR or #RagnarNWP.  I will also try to update twitter.

Some logistics:  our first van starts at 8a on Friday morning.  I’m in van #2.  We are estimated to finish running 190 miles by 1:15p on Saturday afternoon.  Sixteen hours of insanity.

Leg 10 – my first leg is 3.1 miles. I start around 3:40p on Friday.

Leg 22: 4.8 miles at 12:58 a.m. on Saturday. This is way past my bedtime! And I have to run 4.8 miles in the dark! (I can’t lie, kinda stoked.)

And my last leg #34: 5.8 miles around 11a on Saturday morning.

So there you have it!  Let the insanity begin!

Strangely, my 21 day caveman transition is over.  And strangely because it seemed to go by quickly.  The first week was the hardest but after the carb flu induced sleepiness & the cravings subsided, it seemed easy sailing.  The good news is over that 21 day period, I lost 18 pounds.  Going forward, I will continue to avoid sugar & grains with the occasional cheat meal.  And I am no longer going to feel bad about eating leafy greens.  After seeing a Vegan food pyramid’s bottom layer of leafy greens, I’ll keep my salads.

As for the new fruit & veggie taste test challenge, I’ve tried the following new fruits: kiwi, black plum, raspberries, blackberries & anjou pear.  New Veggies: red, orange & yellow bell peppers, daikon, zucchini, eggplant & portobello mushroom (fungus, whatever).  I had a violently physical reaction to raspberries & blackberries & will NEVER try them again.  The eggplant, zucchini & mushroom were grilled – verdict is still out on their raw counterparts.  I did find a veggie I liked cooked: grilled romaine lettuce.  Maybe cheater, but it was fantastic.

Other than caveman, I have been working on my “Christmas in July” projects.  It is going much more slowly than I imagined but I am really enjoying the process.  Although, I think everyone on my list knows what they will receive from me this year.  C’est la vie.  I have rediscovered my love for all things graphic design & am happy this project has brought me back to it.  Small peek at my 1st almost completed gift…

I also love it will look like I have a small store when I finish with all my items. What girl didn’t play store when they were little?

Last but not least, I’ve found my running stride again.  Mostly in part to a dear runner friend.  (She needs a nickname!)  I am not sure I would be as disciplined with my long runs had she not been running by my side.  And the long weekend runs have been fantastic lately (minus the one I didn’t eat).  We’re conquering hills a few weeks ago we were running only half way up.  Taking a running break has perhaps been the best thing I could have done this year.

I will be ending this week running Ragnar – stoked beyond belief – and will share a bit more about the race Wednesday.

Scrolling through craftgawker (another obsession!), I found a recipe for hard boiled eggs – minus the boil.  I was excited to try this because I love hard boiled eggs but making them is not all that easy.  Let them boil for 20 minutes… does that mean when it starts to boil?  Or when it comes to a rolling boil?  And you know what they say about a watched pot…

When I came across this recipe, I was excited.  I could put the eggs in the oven for 30 minutes & do other things.  No more watched pots.  And since I am no longer able to bake things with my mini-muffin pan, this is a great substitute.

I baked them for 30 minutes at 325º F.  It was recommended to test one egg but I decided to go all or nothing.  After baking, I placed them in an ice bath for 10 minutes.  The original blog stated baked “hard boiled” eggs are creamier than the boiled eggs and the egg white is not as greasy.

And then there was the taste test… a total success!

I’m ecstatic about this lil find & totally recommend it to everyone else – especially if you like to make deviled eggs.  And since I love deviled eggs, my next food project may be to make my own mayonnaise.

Can you ever have too many eggs?

Last Monday, I transitioned to a paleo diet – what I lovingly refer to as caveman.  Basically, if a caveman could eat it, I can.  The flow chart (I can’t remember where I found it!) does a great job clarifying what is good or bad.

Maybe my lunch buddies would disagree, but I didn’t have a hard time with the transition until Friday at lunch (un-hungry!).  I seemed to want everything I couldn’t have including foods I don’t normally lean towards.

Besides the fact most crossfit addicts swear by caveman, I was also drawn to this because it stated I would not always be hungry.  Let’s fact it: cavemen didn’t have three meals a day.  In addition, I would still have energy to do stuff.  Case in point: Wednesday, I ate lunch but not dinner & was able to play two hours of volleyball without hunger pains.  (And I played well!)

I’m hooked for that reason alone – as long as I can have the occasional crème brûlée.  Dinner is my BIGGEST obstacle.  I don’t always have time between work and practice or playing or running or …n to make dinner.

After seven days, cutting out sugar & grains, my jar is a lil fuller.

It has been declared I have a very limited fruit & veggie list.  In addition to this 21 day caveman diet, I must try a new fruit or veggie every day.

To date
1. red plum
2. cucumber
3. nectarine
4. snow pea
5. blueberries
6. japanese pear

I’ve tried some of these before but I don’t gravitate towards them like spinach or apples.  To further my fruit & veggie agenda, I must continue to eat the ones I can tolerate.  So far, the only one I will never try again is the nectarine.  I am going to have a hard time with the stone fruits.

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on the road