RUNNING DIARIES | 10.15.2016


Today was a really good day for running!


Josh and Joey had to go to Denver today, so I had already decided that Marion and I would definitely go for a run (even though I don't usually go on the weekends), and I was still really wanting to go to the Poudre Trail, so I was like, "Well, maybe we'll do that today!" Josh got up before I did as usual and did a few housework items for me stating, "Now you have no reason not to go." Thanks, babe!

Just an FYI, jogging strollers are very difficult to put into small cars, but after what seemed like forever, I did it, and it should go a lot quicker and smoother next time.


The trailhead closest to us is about two and a half miles, which is why I drove, and I honestly had trouble finding it and nearly gave up. The "park" it's in is very confusing and weird to me.

So let me start with the bad. It was around 85°F when I went out today, and I have no clue what the humidity was, but it felt extra dry. Also, the trail was a lot wider than I expected (which was very nice!), which meant there was no shade. Like, at all. And it's not like there were any clouds. So it was full sun beating down on me the whole time, and that made it pretty miserable, and also caused this horrendous headache I've had since then, I believe, as I customarily get bad headaches if I'm in the sun too long. 


Despite this, it was pretty incredible. The beginning of the trail was a little weird as there are fenced in yards with heavy machinery everywhere and dirt piles and the river is, I think, a natural habitat area so it's all grown up. As I approached two miles I came to a very nice area with a lake/reservoir/body of water that had a fantastic view of the Front Range mountains. The mountain views the whole time were so worth the sun. 


I set out today without a clear goal. I wanted to do at least three miles, but I had in my head I wanted to try doing four, and I also joined the RunKeeper October 10K challenge just in case I was feeling good and wanted to do six. I also brought two bottles of water (56 ounces). 

When I hit one and a half miles I was still feeling really good so I decided to keep going. When I reached two miles I was still feeling great and I considered going another half mile, but Marion still wasn't asleep and was a little whiny, and going farther would have committed me to more than four miles, which I have only done once, so I went ahead and turned back. Marion finally went to sleep in the third mile, and I was thinking, "I should have gone further!" But I only eight ounces of water left at that point, so it was for the best! Next time I guess I need to take even more. 


I was actually really proud of myself for keeping that pace! I was certain I was going to lose it in the last mile, but I pushed myself and I kept it under 15:00 min/mi. 

I really enjoyed today's run, and will probably start going here every once in a while now, just for a change.

GOALS | Christmas Prep in October


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Winnie's kitty that I completed from August's goals!

I totally skipped September, but that's okay. I came really close to meeting all my August goals though! Since I'm so late on this, these goals start today.

I have quite a few crochet projects due for Christmas and for right after Christmas. So I need to crochet at least an hour a day, for a total of 21 hours, but hopefully I can get in a little more. This will be easy to take with me on our trip, and I'll probably have sufficient time.

I've been trying so hard to do my daily devotions. I did pretty good in September, but I have been slacking off so far in October. A new SRT plan started today, so I'm just going to keep up with that one.

Yoga - I want to start this up again because I feel a little better when I do some. I have a short flow I've been doing, though I keep forgetting till I'm in bed, and I've considered doing some videos again. I'm challenging myself to four times a week, or 14 times for October.

Running - I also want to run four times a week for at least two miles each time. So at least 30 miles for this month. We will be out of town for a week though, so I'll cut myself a little slack and make the goal 25 miles total. I'm not really sure what time and opportunity I'll get while we're gone, and I won't have the stroller.

I've been a little addicted to planner stuff lately... But I want to keep doing my monthly planner because it has really helped me stay on track with things!

Honestly, I feel like I'm going to have a really rough time keeping up with all of that, but October is my favorite month, so maybe I'll somehow manage to do it all!

PHOTOS | Summit Lake


I have lived in or near Denver for three and a half years, and just finally made it to Summit Lake! I've made a few attempts to go and it hasn't worked out until a couple of weekends ago!

I took lots of photos along the way, but I took them through the car window so they're not fantastic. It was a two hour drive for us, and I didn't want to continually stop to take photos because Marion was so good and content. I knew if I got her out or if we sat still too long she probably would have gotten upset, which is understandable, so we just kept going.

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Looking East, there's Denver!

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I did stop once shortly after turning onto Mt Evans Road. There was a trail, but it was super cold and windy, and I didn't feel like it was a good time to be trying to do trails.

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The parking area is very close to the lake, there was hardly any walk at all. By the time we got to the lake, the temperature was about 25°F and it was snowing and sleeting a little. There is a road that curves around the left that takes you to the very top of Mt Evans, but it was already closed (I believe this whole area was covered in snow a few weeks prior to us coming).

This is probably the best photo we have of the three of us. Thanks random stranger!

As you can see, Marion was not amused by the weather. She was only out of the car long enough to carry her to the water and back (which was really like five minutes tops). We warmed up in the car and attempted to put her in Josh's jacket to walk around some more, but she wasn't having it, and that's fine. It was way colder than we thought (forecast had said 45°F and sunny all week!). He stayed in the car with her so I could walk around and get photos. I literally couldn't feel my hands for any of it.
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The way the clouds started falling over the edge was incredible. When we first got there it was clear, as you can see in the photos above. I couldn't get enough of it and I took way too many photos. Sometimes when I see something so beautiful as this I take way too many photos hoping that I'll get at least one that captures that moment. This is one of them, although it still doesn't come close.

Along the edge of the lake is the Chicago Lakes Trail, which is roughly 12 miles round-trip (the internet gives me lots of different numbers, but 12 was given most often). I found out later that it's only a quarter mile to the Chicago Lakes Basin... I regret not walking it. Just an excuse to go back!


This cool guy was just chilling in the road when we were on the way out. There was a female with one or two babies as well, but she was on the left on the side of the mountain and I couldn't get a photo of her.

Of all the places I have been, I'm sure this is my favourite. Even though I didn't get the photos I'd wanted, I didn't get to go to the top of Mt Evans, we didn't get to do any trails, it just didn't even matter. This place was just incredible. It was so quiet, despite the wind, and it felt so untouched. Like, other than the parking lot and road, this is how it's always been. It was like another world up there, because once you reach a certain elevation, things just change.

I took tons more photos which you can see here. I would definitely recommend going here, but suggest calling the Clear Creek Ranger and checking to be sure the road is open first. I don't believe Squaw Pass Road closes at all, but Mt Evans Road does close late Fall to early Spring and anytime there is too much snow, so it's definitely worth checking before you make the drive.

Hopefully I can get some Aspen photos of the surrounding area up soon!

For this post, I've linked up with Photo Friday, and Image-in-ing.

RUNNING DIARIES | 10.05.2016



I was so proud of myself for getting out five times last week! It's not the seven times I'd hoped for, but I'm totally okay with it! Unfortunately, this was my first time out this week. I intentionally skipped Sunday, I wasn't feeling well on Monday, and my dad visited on Tuesday, so I spent time with him instead.

But anyways.

This is roughly my third week not feeling so well. I've been in a manic episode, and it's been pretty bad. I'm not sleeping, I keep forgetting to eat, and the constant effort to keep this in check is simply exhausting. I've been feeling so heavy and burdened and just exhausted. Despite that, my mood has been pretty good, I've had more motivation than I know what to do with, I've been super productive, and just getting things done in general. I've tried to minimize some of those things though because of the exhaustion. It's actually pretty incredible how well I've gotten to know myself and know my bipolar in the past eight years. I even know when to cut back on all the good things. 

There's so much out there about how physical activity can help depression and anxiety and other mental and emotional issues, and I agree somewhat although my "relief" is generally very short-lived, but last week (and this week so far), I feel like it may be leading to more exhaustion, and I only feel better for maybe an hour afterwards. That said, I'm going to keep on and I don't at all regret getting out. I enjoy the fresh air if nothing else.

Also, Marion is so happy in the stroller. See that smile? She also likes to push off the bottom, bounce up and down, and laugh. A lot. I love it.


Today I wanted to complete RunKeeper's October 5K, and I wanted to run at least twice. 

I started out in the neighborhood today, just to get started walking. I think I generally get out there and start the running part immediately and tire myself out too quickly, so I walked the first mile, and I really enjoyed that, because I love walking my neighborhood. Running should definitely be done in the park though. Since I have the stroller anyways.

I almost headed back home once I hit two miles, but I decided to keep going and I completed the 5K! I did walk at a slower pace for the end, which resulted in a slower overall pace, but that's okay.

My longest running "spurt" today was .3 miles, which sounds so wimpy, but whatever. The other one was close to .2 miles. I'm going to try to keep up with these numbers because I really enjoy seeing progress, and as these little bits get longer, it may not necessarily show up in my pace. I tried to keep these fairly slow because I have a tendency to go really fast, but for hardly any distance at all.

A problem I'm having, and have always had, is I tend to tense up in my arms and shoulders so much, and I start leaning on the stroller a little sometimes. I was able to loosen up a little, and since I'm aware I feel like I'll work it out the more I do it. 


I need to get sewing something to cover Marion in the stroller too. She has three positions: one sits up all the way, one is a halfway point, and the other is completely vertical and I can make it into a bassinet. Once I lower it to the halfway mark though, the overhead cover does no good. I think I have figured out how to do it. But in the meantime, I've found I can easily secure a button-up shirt with the collar loop on the inside quite well! It'll be good for winter too because maybe it will keep a little cold out. I have some ideas, I just have to make myself set up the sewing machine. 

I'm going to try to get out tomorrow and Friday as well! Maybe even Saturday, but I'm not 100% sure on that one. And maybe I'll go somewhere different on Friday! We'll have to see. This park is great either way though.

RUNNING DIARIES | 09.27.2016



Marion was already falling asleep when we left for our walk today, and I decided to walk through the neighborhood instead of the park since we wouldn't be going to the playground. I love walking through the neighborhood, looking at all the beautiful houses and yards, and I love all the trees hanging over the sidewalk, but the sidewalk is so broken and has so many bad shifts in a lot of places that it was a little difficult not to wake her up jarring her all over the place and keep a good pace, so we ended up in the park after the first mile. We didn't get far before I noticed a strange sound and found one of the stroller tires was completely flat, so I decided to head on home. Plus it was hot and I couldn't seem to get away from the sun.

I didn't do any running or jogging or anything today, but I did okay keeping a consistent pace. Got a little winded and had some chest pains, but not terribly, and after more than 15 years dealing with it, I know when to keep pushing myself and when to stop or at least slow down. As I get out more, that will get better.

I got my first real pair of running shoes yesterday, so it's been fun trying those out. Fenna recommended Newton Running and I'm so glad she did. When I first put them on though, I did not like them. It took a couple miles, then I started feeling like I loved them. Maybe I'll try to write a full review after I've put some miles in them and run in them.

I do want to say, I'm very frustrated with people in the park being unwilling to move to a side of the walkway so I can get by. If I was alone, I could easily just go around, but that's not always true with the stroller. Take a walk with your friends and walk side-by-side, that's fine, but move when someone needs to pass and don't give them the stink eye. And photographers, please don't put all your camera gear on the sidewalk, and if someone is coming, don't stand in the middle of the sidewalk to get your shot and make me wait on you. Just let me pass. It won't take but like three seconds, I promise. At the very least, be polite, because then I probably won't even care if I need to wait if you're nice. I'm so tired of people getting huffy with me when I say excuse me three times because they see me, but choose not to move. I don't mean to sound like a jerk, I just wish people would be more considerate and polite. End rant.

Tomorrow I'm considering going to a trail for our walk, just to change it up some. All day I worked on doing today's and tomorrow's cleaning and doing a specific amount of laundry because I thought I was going to have a doctor's appointment in Denver tomorrow (which would have taken up close to four hours), but I'm actually going to have to cancel it, so I might treat myself!

RUNNING DIARIES | 09.25.2016



It's been so long, should I reintroduce myself?

I've been going through a light depression for a while, and I think I just needed a break from some things, and blogging was one of them. I don't post much, but I just needed to step away for a while. Instagram is the only thing I kept going with, and even that was in spurts. I'm feeling much better now though, so here I am with something new.

I've tried running on and off for years and it never really stuck, and I think it was partially due to lack of support, working too much, taking too many classes, and not having a good place to go running. When I moved to Colorado, sidewalks and parks were in abundance, but I just never got out there (though I did ride my bicycle to work a few times!). I started walking shortly after Marion was born, but not much and not regularly. My friend Fenna is a runner (and is training for two marathons currently, yay!) and she really encouraged me to just do it. Josh told me he'd look after Joey and encouraged me to go. So I did back in March, but I really dropped off during the summer, mostly because I hate the heat and partially because of some medical issues. Since it's cooling off, I'm feeling much more motivated to get outside, and since I really do love being out there, I'm challenging myself to do it regularly.

I use RunKeeper to track my runs, and they have a "notes" section for each activity, and I really like taking things down and keeping up with how I'm feeling, etc. So I've decided to start posting that here, though I probably won't post for each run, and I'll probably continue with my late-night posting.


Here's my sweet companion. We talk and make faces and sometimes I run longer periods because she likes going fast, and sometimes I go a longer distance so she can get a longer nap. 

Today was just a walk, and that's what I intend to do for the rest of the week, though I'll walk a longer distance than I did today.

I have a subungual hematoma on my left big toe. That happened hiking a few weeks ago. I saw the doctor because I didn't know what was going on and wanted to be sure nothing was infected or anything like that. He advised me to wear sandals unless I absolutely must wear something covered and he didn't like the idea of me running, but it's going to take roughly six months for this to heal, and I'm not going to sit it out that long. Since I was about to order new running shoes, I left my old ones in Alabama to save luggage space, and I do not have anything else to wear that would be appropriate for walking, so I wore flip flops today, and will until my shoes arrive (hopefully tomorrow!). It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be, actually.

The weather was so much easier to be out in! I'm so happy we're getting out of summer. 

I haven't decided on any distance goals for this week. I think I just want to keep myself over two miles and then kind of decide from there based on how I'm feeling (and how Marion is doing).

More to come soon!