my Belated Thursday post:

So a funny thing happened on the way to my post yesterday: we had a series of thunderstorms roll through in the afternoon. The power went out just as I was uploading my photos from the phone to the cloud. And it stayed out until bedtime. Ooops! But, here it is, after just a minor delay 🙂

Polaroids from the Trail

Polaroids, you say? Who still has a polaroid camera? Well, it turns out, I do. A Polaroid ColorPack II, which was my grandfather’s. It lived in my parents library for as long as I can remember, and now it lives in mine.

    Initially produced in 1969, the Colorpack 2 was the first rigid, plastic bodied, color film capable Polaroid to retail at consumer range prices, and set a precedent for many, many similar models that followed. The Colorpack is designed only for 100 series packfilm. Focusing is carried out by turning the distance-marked front lens element; unlike the original Polaroid 100-400 series packfilm cameras, this series features no rangefinder mechanism. As an improvement over the original folding series however, there is no need to cock the shutter after each exposure. The Colorpack 2 also takes generic ‘blue dot’ flashcubes, with a wind-up hot shoe and small plastic diffuser set to one side of the lens. Early versions of this model featured a glass lens, but most were plastic (which mine is)

Okay, I have to admit that I didn’t carry the Polaroid with me on my runs. That could be a bit awkward. But I have gotten some nice photos on my run. I thought I would share 🙂

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My runs were Lilac–fueled this week, by the time the scent from one had faded, the next bush would appear


  My neighbors “de-rocked” the blueberry fields to make it easier to rake. This pile is a sample of the rocks they pulled out. Maine is outstanding in its field–of rocks! 

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There is a lot of water on my route; streams, ponds, and bogs. Adds some wonderful tranquility to my run.


                                          The gravel pits at the I run through add striking scenery along the way

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These are for SusieShy, she wanted to see some of the small (er) hills I was running to avoid climbing the mountain at the end of my loop 🙂

I am running a loop around my neighborhood for my five-mile runs. I am only running one way currently, because if I run the other way I have to end on the mountain (aka Blinn Hill). So which is worse, finishing on a huge hill or hitting several small, steep hills through out the run?

Weekly Rundown

What a week! Been busy busy busy. Until Saturday, when I made the mistake of lying on the couch around 8:30 am and didn’t get back up until 12 pm. Oops. I was very busy Sunday (and today), I think it was guilt. I have nothing against a good nap, but wasting a whole morning was awful. The dogs were no help, they just slept along with me.  More coffee from now on, I think.

Monday: Short run, 2 miles. I took the easy route, which I have been doing more  and more recently. I need to kick it into gear, or I will never be ready for the Urban Raid. The back going out truly derailed me and my motivation. I rode Christopher Robin in the afternoon. He is such a speedy little guy, he just moves right along; he wants to see everything. What fun to ride.

Tuesday: Blah, rainy. I had gotten new running shoes on Monday, so I pulled out the treadmill. Only 23 minutes, and I decided the shoes needed to go back. I have rather square feet and although the shoes felt good and supportive when I put them on, after a couple of miles my feet were “tingling.” So I shut down the treadmill and did some yoga stretches.

Wednesday: The sun returned! Speaking of returning, I traded in my sneakers and got the ones I probably should have started with Tuesday night. Couldn’t wait to hit the road! I did my flat drills, for two reasons. One, I thought it would be a good idea to be close to home in case these shoes didn’t work out either; and, two, as I said above, I need to be doing these things. The shoes worked out very well. And the drills, well, they weren’t as fun. But they did go fairly well. In the afternoon I rode Charby. My hubby has been working on my riding ring. It was a choppy, uneven piece of field. But it was the best I had. He took the plow out to break it up, then started grading. I think he got dizzy out there, going around and around with the tractor. But it came along nicely, and I started riding around the edges. So nice to have flat ground my klutzy mare can’t trip over!

Thursday: I took the day off–mostly. I took Christopher out back and we chugged around for half an hour. I think he was getting a bit bored. I am getting some jumps set up, and I have plans for that pony next week!

Friday: my weekly riding date with Mom 🙂 I thought it would be nice to run down the road to meet her. I told her to call me when she hit a certain town, which should give me a 35 minute run. I think she forgot, and called later. Or she needs to slow down! Because after she called, I got in barely 21 minutes before I met her on the road. On the up side, I was running the 80% uphill route and I did it in my fastest time ever. Which is pretty cool since I didn’t know I was going that fast. After bringing me home and waiting for me to change, we called the beasties in and rode. We had a nice long ride, 45 minutes. The equines were very well-behaved and we went out to the back, back field. Mr Chris has never been back there before and he was on a tear to get to the other end. It it just over a third of a mile, and there is an old logging road surrounded by saplings starting to take over again. Now, Charby likes a trail ride, but she likes to amble along and check everything out. I was doing circles to bring  Christopher back to Charby and Mom. When we get to the end of the logging road, there is rock wall as it is the end of the original field. We had, at one point, fenced that field in so the horses could be out there. Mr. Christopher didn’t believe me when I said that we couldn’t go any further, and he really didn’t want to go back. Silly boy.

Saturday: the day of my infamous nap. I tried to make up for it in the afternoon with class work and yoga. Still felt the guilt, however.

Sunday: the day of making up for my laziness. I went for my first 5+ mile run of the season. It was great, I was worried whether I could go that far (especially without pain), but I did well. Mile 3 was the hardest, but I perked up for the last 2. It wasn’t the greatest time, but we can work on that. After I made breakfast (I am not telling you what I had, there was icing involved) for me and hubby, I went out to plant more in the garden. Pumpkins, asparagus, potatoes, tomatillos: we are going to have a good garden this year. Then I climbed back on Charby, although we didn’t do much besides walk around the newly finished ring (Husband of the Year Award is going to my husband). I just wanted to ride, so I didn’t care what we did. Topped off the day with a movie (the Avengers) and some Orange Leaf with my girls from high school– I think we are going on 30 years of friendship 🙂 By the time I got home some coworkers of my husband’s had dropped by and we had a good time watching the fire, chatting and maybe drinking one or two hard ciders. In all, a wonderful day and a fabulous way to end a terrific week!

Saturday Tip & Trick

Tip # 11: Focus only on yourself. There will always be someone fitter, faster or more flexible than you. Don’t compare your self to them, Endress says. Forget about them. Do not let them deter you from your goal. Your workout time is for you, and about you.                                                                                                                                                       —webmd,  Gerald Endress, exercise physiologist

My Holiday Miracle!

This is a post that I wrote, and never posted as we got further and further from the holiday. Going through my drafts, I thought that just maybe I could post it. It may help me remember my goals!

Usually the holiday season is the time of year when I just say go hang and eat what I want.

By December 31st I have already put on pounds.  Even though I know that whatever I put on now I will be sweating and cursing to get off in January and February and March……. Last year I even took the month of December off from exercise because, dang it, I was just burned out.

Not that that worked, I apparently get cranky without my yoga.  Some people drink, some do cocaine, I have my endorphins.

endorphin runner

And my coffee. Don’t take my coffee away from me. I don’t even need caffeinated, just drinking decaf has a placebo effect on me. But I digress. I found myself doing yoga a week or two into December. But I still gained seven pounds from last year’s holiday fun.

I got on the scale the at the beginning of December 2014 and I was at the lowest point that I have been in 6 to 8 years.

      How did this miracle happen?

 I blame running. Not only am I burning calories, but I find that I just don’t want to eat as much. This makes sense if you think about why I eat.

My husband is a smoker. I don’t think it is fair to nag him to quit if I can’t kick my own addiction: food. I know, I know, we all need to eat to survive. My food addiction isn’t about survival but enjoyment. I am easily swayed; reading an excellent description of a meal in a book can make me immediately crave whatever the characters are having.  Savory meats and puddings in historical fiction sound much better  in my imagination than they most likely were. My cravings usually revolve around spicy and salty, but I venture into sweets sometimes too.

I eat when I’m bored. Sad. Happy. Even when I am nauseous, I feel if I put just the right thing in my stomach I will feel better. Food is a cure-all to me. In the past when I lost weight, it seemed to be an immediate invitation to eat more.

This year that hasn’t happened. All the work I did with the 7 Day workout and my running seems to be stripping me down to who I should be. Maybe it’s just the endorphins talking, but I want to keep the momentum going more than I want the holiday food. At least, not in excess. I pretty much eat what I want, but in smaller quantities.  I made snickerdoodles from scratch for my party, and only had one beforehand. In previous years my guests would have been lucky to get half of them.

Now the holidays are over and I got on the scale: minus  .02 lbs. Not a lot, but certainly not  plus seven extra pounds. My food cravings are increasing a bit, which is odd now that the holiday season is over. However, the will power I developed during the holidays seemed to have carried over. I look at the food and then decide whether I am bored or if I really need something. Not that I don’t still eat it occasionally, but at least I know what I am doing!

Running seems to have increased my motivation. Before I was exercising to lose weight. Now I am losing weight and eating right so that I can run better. The endorphins are still the same, however. While running may not be the answer for everyone, I do hope that everyone can find that one sport that turns the motivation around.

 The enjoyment of the sport make it much easier to deny the occasional bowl of ice cream or pizza when you can get out there and fly down the road.  

Weekly Rundown

Another week flown by! The weather was mostly lovely, and I got a very nice week of exercise in. 

Monday: Decided to take the munchkin, aka Daisy, for her walk. Didn’t go as far as planned (only 1 mile), the weather was a bit brisker than I had realized and I didn’t have enough on. I did, however,  get a much longer ride in than usual. Mr. Chris and I went on the road. Someone must have told him my plans, because I was barely on before he was out the driveway and down the road. He even went the way I had planned. All was going well until the local school bus came along. I think I was more worried than he was. The driver was nice enough to creep by and Christopher was alert, but not stressed.

Tuesday: off, yup, completely off!

Wednesday:  Went to check on my uncle’s house, so decided to take my run over there for a change of scenery. The wind was definitely a-blowing so I was glad I had a more protected route. Late in the afternoon I took Charby out and long-lined her for 30 minutes. And, yea! First time I took her out without Christopher and I didn’t have to walk him after because he had run himself into a lather.

Thursday: Had to go into town for a job fair, so I took a run on the rail trail. I never like running from the Augusta side as much, I don’t know why. I think the return trip is harder. But I manged 3.84 miles, then went and shopped with my friend Kate. A hair cut with some pampering and I was on my way home. My hair stylist is also a personal trainer, so you can imagine we never run out of things to talk about!  I  managed to do some ground work with Christopher after I got home. A very good day, and I slept quite well that night  🙂

Friday: My mom came up for our first riding date! She rode Charby–who was very good to her. I got on Christopher and we rode for about 30 minutes. The horses were very well behaved and I can’t wait until she comes up next week for our next date. We had lunch and after she went home (early enough to beat the rush hour traffic) I did some yoga. Definitely needed the stretching this week.

Saturday: My mom brought me up a treadmill on Friday. I have never really wanted to run on a treadmill, but I missed a lot of running during the winter and on rainy days, so when she offered it to me, I took it. So I took it for a spin Saturday morning. While I can’t say that is better than running outside, there is something to be said for running while watching the Walking Dead. That seemed a bit ironic actually, like I was practicing.

Sunday: well, I took the day off. Except it didn’t feel like a day off. I pushed 4 wheelbarrows full of horsey fertilizer to the garden from the barn. Did I ever mention how long my driveway is? And why did we put the garden and the barn at opposite ends of that driveway? Since I was there anyway, I cleaned up the rest of my barnyard. My wonderful husband spent a large portion of his one day off working on my riding ring. So I puttered around the field, setting up a lunging ring and some jumps. Of course, by the time we did all that, I had no energy left to ride. But I did have a lovely nap on the couch before dinner.

I call that a good week!