Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Ahhhh, SUMMER!

And in a blink of an eye, May is gone and summer has arrived in Denver: The temperatures turned overnight from 50 degrees one day to 90 the next; my grass is toasty-brown already due to lack of any substantial rainfall in the past month (see above); my kids have turned the tent tarp into a slip-and-slide (see above again, at least the hose provided some relief to the toast); 3 more days of school and I am officially done for the next 9 weeks; 3 more days and the last of my children are done with middle school and venturing to new world of HIGH SCHOOL; and the college daughter has moved back home, evident by the entire contents of her dorm room now sprawled out on my living room floor:

Ahhhh, summer!! Seasons are a good thing, even the hot sweaty ones, because they force us to regroup and readjust, maybe try some new things. I decided the end of the school year is just like running strides. You start out steady and quickly pick up speed until you are hauling at full throttle, arms pumping, legs flying, chest heaving, until you thunder across the finish line and want to collapse. I'm tired, y'all, tired of the relentless stress winter dumped on me and I am so ready for a little break.

I look forward to working some new muscles this summer, literally and metaphorically. Summer is a season of rest, growth, playfulness, reading, freedom, fun, and adventure. New adventures and new memories with my kids are awaiting. Financial restraints will require us to be a little creative this summer as we won't be venturing to our beloved cottage on the beach of Lake Michigan as we normally do, but hey, we live in Colorado which screams active fun. I have a few side trips in store for us which I think are going to be a blast, yet physically rewarding. I plan to write them all down and pull them out of a hat, on which one we will do, when we have a few days to get away. Whatever we end up doing, I plan to forge memories based from "get to's" instead of "have to's". I plan to do a lot more trail running, which I adore, and I have big plans for my running which include getting stronger; getting faster; feeling good; fearing less; getting leaner; sleeping better; working though the pain; developing more confidence. I want to make it a priority ...oh, and I want to rest more, a wise habit I’ve avoided for years for fear I’d backslide into inertia. And most importantly, I want to take my running to a level of "fun", something that's been lacking in my running shoes lately. Of course, all this will be at wee-hour of 5a.m. to avoid the excessive heat, and the allergens that threaten constantly to take me down.

My running highlights since last blog have included a 46 mile week last week, mostly due to a last minute extra long run on Sunday beings I got a late start for Friday's long run and was left melted into part of the pavement at mile 10. My friend, Jim, ran with me over at the Highline Canal, which is a pea-gravel dirt trail, which is nice, but mostly it's partially shaded, a necessity in this heat as I am not a heat runner. Yesterday I slapped together some 400's and before I knew it, I was feeling great (which it didn't initially start out that way) and ended up doing 20 of them (with a 200M recovery jog between each). I couldn't believe I had the stamina to do that many, but when I reached 16, I knew I had to try. And the best part was that the last 10, I progressively got faster until I was doing the last two at a 6:12 pace. I know that's not very speedy for me, but in the current condition I'm sporting, I'll take it. The nice thing about being slow right now is that I have nowhere to go but up!

My blog friend, and now real-world friend, was in town on Monday to run the famous Bolder Boulder (which I heard had an astonishing 51,500 runners finish, making it the largest road race in the entire country. wow!). Runtherace was here with her family to run the BB and I was able to hook up with her whole family (who are just absolutely adorable) in downtown Denver at the Hard Rock Cafe for a little dinner. We had a great time chatting about running and life and I'm hoping she can make it out to Denver for a little girl-fest 1/2 marathon in August. All girls welcome, we're going to have one heckofa good time!! Anyway, it was really fun to meet her and it made me think, as I was walking back to my car after dinner, how very blessed I am via this blog to have met some truly wonderful people who have touched my very soul.

Summer is almost here, don't forget to go outside and play. And while you’re at it, develop an exercise plan that makes you clean and free and whole. Maybe the truth behind acknowledgement has the power to impact results.

Write down some ideas of your own, tear them into strips and stick them, folded, into your overturned, wide-brimmed, straw beach hat. Pull one out when you need it, and see where summer takes you.

36 comments:

gary said...

If you have inertia for an extended period it's no longer backliding, it's maintaining. Just sayin'

gary said...

p.s. i'm SO excited. By the time I spot your blog post there are usually 600 responses. I'm no. 1! I'm no 1!.

OK, technically with this response I'm no. 2.

HappyTrails said...

Preach it, Sister! You NEED to have FUN - why else do it??? And 6:12's???? I don't know if I have ever seen a 6:12!!! You are awesome! See, those legs are ready to come back to life! I LOVE your new header photo - absolutely gorgeous! Is it Twin Lakes? See, with scenery like that available to us just outside the door, why settle for pavement??? Not only is it great for the body, it is food for the heart and soul!
Welcome summer!
K

DRog said...

Hi Jill,
Love your "Get to's" rather than "Have to's" also your pic of college girl clutter just made me realize there is no countdown to be clear of the stuff it will always come back and be sprawled about! I love the Denver heat, miss it! enjoy!!
-D

Slomohusky said...

6:12! In my dreams. Geez I can only wish! Great effort Jill. Have a great Summer and who plays the piano? I noticed it with the living room shot.

Jamoosh said...

Didn't you guys have monster hail just last week?

Jennifer said...

Jill, you sound like you are on a roll, moving along, taking it all in and finding all the good in everything that is going on. It must be nice to have the girl back from college. Your living room looks like mine does all the time,and I have no kids! I love your attitude, keep working it girl!

ajh said...

6:12 is slow??? Wow! I can't imagine! Good for you! Your new header is beautiful and you have some good summer plans! Have fun. I have 10 more days of school. I'm jealous!

Laura said...

I get excited when I have a 6:12 pace...cept it's km per hr not miles.

C2Iowa said...

6:12 !! Hot dang. I wish for that speed as well. Great post and what a great attitude towards life.

Julie said...

First of all holy crap on the 6:12...WTH!! I was so flipping excited to do a 6:50 mile:) You are amazing Jill! It sounds like you have so many fun things planned for the summer! I had to laugh at the picture of college girls things laying in the middle of your living room floor:) I can laugh at this because our front living room looks the same! College boy just dropped all of his dorm room crap right in the middle of the floor and I just don't know where to move it! It is a darn good thing that we are not expecting company anytime soon:)

Take care Jill...hugs and love:)

Teamarcia said...

Oh the days of slip n slide are back! The Caveman threw ours out and the kids are still giving him hell for it.
You sound so GOOD! And lordy you're running so well too! Enjoy every delicious drop of summer!

Marlene said...

20 400 repeats?? You are a machine, woman!

Sounds like a wonderful bloggy meet up! So fun!

Enjoy summer!

Jocelyn said...

Summer is amazing. I know we all think 6:12 is so fast, but I understand if its slow for you. Don't beat yourself up about it...we all are envious.

Staci Dombroski said...

I am sooo excited for summer too!! Tomorrow is my last day :)

marathonmaiden said...

ummmm 20 X 400? wow. you are a ROCKSTAR! i think the most i've done is 12 and there was absolutely no way i was doing anymore haha

Christi said...

Have a great summer!

Meg said...

Your new header makes me want to go camping and your post is so full of SUMMER-ness and fun. Sounds like you're going to have a good one. I cracked up at the photo of C.Girl's stuff in the living room. Our house has NOT been the same since CMan has been home, especially the kitchen! He did get a job and we were dancing in the streets, FINALLY!!!
Hugs to you and keep up the fun!

Petraruns said...

Dear Jill it sounds like you've turned the corner despite some challenges this past year - I couldn't be happier to read that. You ARE in a stunning place and your workouts are VERY impressive - I have NEVER run that fast. So go and have some fun, go and enjoy your family and the beautiful place you live in and enjoy yourself too - be nice to yourself (when you're not doing 400s..).

Glenn Jones said...

Man - how I wish I lived closer to the mountains. Love your new header picture!

onelittletrigirl said...

At first I thought you said you ran a 46 mile run...I was like WHOA gf!!! Must re-read!!! That sounds like something only Yvette would do!

Jon Gilchrist said...

LOVE the slip and slide...wish we had one here in the office....lol

misszippy said...

Did you say TWENTY quarters? You are a masochist! But fantastic job with lowering your splits!

You're right, you have a lovely backyard to play in there in Colorado. I envy that. My kids and I actually did the ideas/hat thing last summer. It is a fun way to spend summer!

Anne said...

Haha...6.12 "I know, not very speedy for me" and you're not talking per km!! Impressive!

Love the have "fun and get things done" theme...my husband is off for the summer, but I get to work (though I wean it to part time)...and we plan on having fun and training :)

Molly said...

Holy cow, a 46 mile week, and 6:12 pace???? Hello Hare, my name is Tortise....

very cool that you are friends with a blogger friend...I've "met" so many cool people I'd love to see them in person!

Run Jess Run said...

Holy cow! You guys look like sisters!!

Where's your cottage on Lake Michigan? I live about a mile from that lake!

Heather said...

Happy Summer! I love the "get to's instead of have to's." You have a great attitude.

MCM Mama said...

Sounds like you have a fabulous plan for summer! How fun!

Tina @GottaRunNow said...

What a hopeful post about summer! That workout sounds tough - I'm tired just thinking about it. And I want to run there - pretty!

lindsay said...

holy crap! 20 x 400?!?! are you on drugs? ;) and nice pace too! i'm definitely jealous :) (feel free to mail me these drugs)

every year in may/june i wonder why i didn't major in education...

ajh said...

I will be in Colorado Springs from July 8 to the 13th with those two being pretty much travel days. Is that near you at all? My friend that I am visiting said we will be running Baptist Road and it might be a good place to meet??? Does that sound right to you? If you have interest in meeting for a run there let me know. I will let you know day. We are racing Sunday and hiking up Pikes Peak one day. I can't wait.

Adam said...

"blog friends, meet real world friend"

I had to laugh out loud at all of the junk in the living room. I remember those days.....


BTW - I just added RnR Denver to my schedule. No more RnR Vegas on acct of the baby. :)

The un-Zen Runner said...

Ahhh the slip and slide. Do you remember those commercials about 20 years ago for "Crocodile Mile?" It was like slip and slide, but you end up sliding through what looks like a crocodile mouth with water spraying out of it. My grandma had one. Super fun.

onebadrunner said...

thanks jilly.
love the post.
got the green light from FatherRunner for August.
now just gotta get that contract signed...

Katie A. said...

Summer is here! The heat is already killing me and I am NOT a morning runner! Ugh, what to do, what to do!

Glad you had such a great week of running! You kicked my ass in mileage! Whoo hoo!
Miss ya!

Run Jess Run said...

The Mackinac race goes around the island. I think it starts through the town and then on the bike trail for a bit around the island, and then through the island on some trails. Plus the race is in the fall and the colors will be amazing!