Category Archives: Music

Back To Normal

When I last left off, I had just finished a half-marathon and was mentally preparing myself for a hike the next day.  I’m happy to say that the hike didn’t happen as my legs were angry enough with me as it was.  We did, however, go up to Hurricane Ridge to check out the views.

There was lots of snow (yes, that’s my 12-year-old son dwarfing his grandmother and father):

Lots of wildlife:

A clear view of Mt. Baker, 180 miles away:

And lots of trees:

I even got to try the infamous Starbucks Mint Frappacino (it was heavenly and I earned it) while the boys had quite a bit of fun goofing around with the outback hats:

The view of Port Angeles at the base of the Olympics:

But alas, all good things and all holidays must eventually come to an end.  My mother-in-law went back to the Motherland this past Saturday… but not before we went out to dinner to celebrate both our milestone birthdays this year (we split this delicious morsel 3 ways):

And today was business as usual, or Week 0 Day 1 of marathon training, to which I went out and completed 5 miles plus 1.  James is still hurt, but he’s in the process of formulating my training plan as I write this.  He’s such a good sport.  He actually just gave me a breakdown of my long runs for August and September, including (but not limited to) the 2 back-to-back half-marathons I’m signed up for, preceded and followed by those gnarly 20-mile runs…  dear, oh dear, let the games begin…

Have a fabulous week!!

Motivational Music Monday… and stuff

May is a busy month in this house.  This past week we’ve celebrated a birthday and Mother’s Day (and we still have an anniversary coming up).  We also did a happy dance when the child returned home from Hawaii.  AJ is the one buried in the sand (his father did his laundry, 😀 ).

The day before AJ came home was James’s birthday.  I bought him… (notice I said him, not us)… I bought him a nice dinner and dessert on his birthday, and when AJ got home, we celebrated properly.

It’s Sunday night, so I’m on day 12 of The Whole 30.  All of my cravings stopped on day 6.  I wasn’t even tempted with cake or naughtiness even with all the celebrations going on.  I will admit, as I hate cooking, I’m a bit tired of spending time in the kitchen, but again, it’s all in the planning.  I made enough food on Thursday and Friday to last me the weekend, and the boys were on their own.  Mostly.  I’ll always share my veggies and chili.  (#spottedtheGroot)

I also did my long run today.  It went well.  I felt strong and full of energy.  At mile 4, I ate a few too many raisins (portion control matters) and my stomach cramped up; however, as I was doing an out-and-back, I had no choice but to power through.  Sometimes not having a choice is a good thing.  I also had the trail mostly to myself.  Nice.

Although… sometimes being on the trail alone can wreak havoc with the imagination.  I wore my hydration pack, kept hearing the sloshing of water, and thought someone or someTHING was stalking me as it sounded like the bushes rustling.  I don’t have a clue what bedded down in this huge patch of grass the previous night, but I’m glad it was gone (the grass is actually as high as my hips).  The blades were clearly flattened right smack in the middle:

A successful week in eating and a successful week in running (with even some cycling thrown in for good measure), so now on to Motivational Music Monday by 50 in 50 Marathon Quest.

Tonight (Mother’s Day), U2 are here in concert, so James opted to pay tribute to them.  I’m not a big U2 fan, so I’ll pass on playing a U2 song.  I will, however, follow suit with the title. “It’s A Beautiful Day” has helped me pick up my step during many a long run… and it’s Michael Bublé. It just doesn’t get any better than that.

Hoping all y’all have a happy week!!

Week In Review… with Pictures!

I’m not feeling very wordy about last week’s training, but I do have some pictures to share!

Skunk lilies! Pretty, but stinky!

Okay, truth be told, marathon training started last week with The Motivator… although that is certainly not what I was calling him by the end of our 5K together.  From here on out, until I run my marathon in October, he and I will be running together at least once a week.  This is not going to be fun, nor is it going to be pretty.  But because of it, I will succeed at crossing the finish line in the allotted time.  So I will suck it up, get pissed off, and get over it.

The Motivator’s 5K PR is 23:16, whereas I’ve not even left the chute yet. Training is about to get ugly.

But hey!  Good news!   Last week I was also able to get outside on the bike for the first time in 2017! Yay!  That means we had sunshine!  The other good news?!  My sit bones didn’t hurt!  I’m so pleased about that.  The god-awful mind-numbing bike trainer did its job… at least for now. As the weather improves, hopefully my distance and speed improve.  Then possibly I will ultimately have a picnic at the barn (my 50-miler)!!

See the above trees?  We’ve had lots of rain and wind here, which in turn have resulted in fallen trees as the ground is saturated. It won’t be long before the above fallen tree that is leaning will cause the standing tree to collapse as well.  Right across the trail.

And yes, the Easter Bunny made his annual appearance.  Probably not good to have all that chocolate in the house, but I’ll try hard not to complain.

I also have to thank Renee from The Revenge Wogger for the beautiful tulips!  She visited the Skagit Valley Tulilp Festival in my area and sent some to me as we didn’t get a chance to meet up!  So very sweet!  Thanks Renee!  They’re gorgeous!

I #spottedthe… game:  A bunny.  He was too quick to get a picture though.  Not that a bunny is on the list, but I do challenge anyone to get a good picture of a bunny.  😀

Daryl, above, is not wild, he’s domestic. I bunny-sit him during the day at work. #shakaears #imhisfavoriteauntie

Week in mileage:  20.  Keeping track so I can watch the number climb.

Hope everyone had a nice Easter, Passover, and weekend!  For those running Boston, may God bless you all!  Happy running!

 

 

Mind-Numbing

Having to be on a bike trainer is painfully mind-numbing.  I use one on XT days and because I need to build up for that 50-mile bike ride I want to accomplish this summer, you know, to celebrate turning the big 5-0 (nope, still can’t put those two numbers together… don’t want to, don’t have to).  Donna over at Running To Travel just confirmed that cycling makes one a better runner as well.  As I won’t be able to hit the trail on my bike until about July when it stops raining, I have to settle for the trainer right now (and as I said, it… is… mind-numbing):

Going for a bike ride in the great outdoors, however, is quite stimulating:

This, unfortunately, is mind-numbing:

But this is quite stimulating:

And this is positively stimulating:

Kinda stimulating too (and possibly a little cute?):

Mind-numbingly stimulating:

I think you get where I’m coming from.

AND… the song I’ve chosen for this week’s MMM is stimulating.  This post, however, is fantastically mind-numbing.

Anyway… on to the music… I remember exactly where I was and what I was doing when I heard that the drummer (Rick Allen) from Def Leppard had been in a serious car accident and had lost an arm. Okay, in reality, I don’t really remember what I was doing… it was the ’80s after all, but I do remember being devastated when I heard the news, thinking Def Leppard was done and/or would never be the same again.  But they came back… and with a vengeance I might add, bigger and better than before. I do actually remember seeing the following video and being awestruck, which was after that fateful accident.  Rick had learned how to adapt and improvise and succeed regardless of what life dealt him… and for that, he will forever be someone I admire.

This song has always been and will always be a mainstay on my workout playlists…

Race season is about to begin for me, with Sunday (09 April) being race #1 of 2017.  It’s going to be a fun little party with nothing but 12’s for miles and miles.  It is Seattle’s one and only Seahawks 12K Run At The Landing!  I’ll be running the 5K while James is running the 12K.  Okay, I won’t lie… I’m really hoping that a couple of the Seahawks football players come out to cheer us on.  OMG… that’s when all time goals go out the window…  “Seahawk spotted at aid-station 6K in the 12K… I’m there!!!  Doesn’t matter that I’m 0.1 miles from the finish line of the 5K!!!”

Hope you’re having a fantastical weekend!!  And for those of you racing (including my father-in-law Alan in the UK), I wish you a happy and healthy finish!!

March Sadness… and a song

I know a lot of people don’t follow March Madness and the college basketball championship tournament, but I do, and I have to say, I am gutted.  The team I had winning it all was eliminated last night.  Xavier beat the hell out of U of A, and to be honest, I think they had Arizona seeded wrong as a #2.  Regardless, I won’t babble on about it.  My only hope now to stay in first place on my bracket and win all the money is to have Gonzaga lose next week and for me to get all my other picks spot on.  There’s always a chance…


One of my water app plants is growing up quite nicely.  I thought I had killed him as I wasn’t getting any alerts one day, realized it late in the evening, and found him quite sad and thirsty.  But I managed to save him, level him up, and he got quite cute, which really is the only reason I’m sharing.  He’s cute.  And who doesn’t want to share cuteness with others?!


I went out for a nice little run last night, you know, because I’m training for a race and all.  I’m not exactly a heavy hitter when it comes to my stats, but every once in awhile I will check to see if I have any fun numbers.  I kind of got excited with my max pace number from last night.  That is actually the fastest I’ve ever run.  Sometimes stats can be similar to positive reinforcement.  So, yes!  Yay!  I’m getting there!  Now if I could just sustain that particular pace for, oh, say, 13 miles, I’d be super happy.  (Oh, and I climbed a little mountain too… to some of you that have followed me for awhile, that’s the elevation profile for Mo-Fo Hill.)


On to a song…

James told me he was going to post “Victorious” for Motivational Music Monday.  I said, “Oh, you mean Duran Duran?!”  No.  Panic at the Disco.

After processing that for awhile and me thinking about Duran Duran’s Victorious song, I realized the song isn’t called Victorious… It’s called Notorious!!

Okay, well, it rhymes.  And it’s Duran Duran.  Notorious.  Eighties.  You get the picture.

Hope you have a happy and healthy weekend! Any fun plans, races, happenings?

Shape of You

James has posted his weekly update and MMM song over at 50 in 50 Marathon Quest, so it’s time for me to follow suit.

Ed Sheeran… know this guy?  He’s tearing up the charts worldwide right now.  He recently released his latest album, ÷ (Divide), and in the UK, he currently occupies 9 of the top 10 spots on the Billboard Top 100.  I’m not quite sure how they configure this… maybe it’s the top downloads for the week, and as his album was just released, that would make sense. Regardless, the number one song in the world is “Shape Of You.”

Have you heard it yet?  Probably, yes.  Overplayed?  Definitely, yes.  A great tune? Without a doubt.  It’s also my song choice of the week.

While the song itself has nothing to do with shapes or sizes of bodies, the words “I’m in love with the shape of you” are powerful… especially in this day and age of Photoshop and body shaming.  Which makes me love the song all the more.

  • Are you enjoying Ed Sheeran’s new album?
  • Do you think “Shape Of You” is overplayed?
  • What’s your favorite song this week?

Oh No! I’m Late!!

… for Motivational Music Monday, that is!  Sheesh, what were you thinking?!

But first, a small update…

Snow… it won’t stop.  This happened last Monday:

And this happened the Monday before that:

I’m really kind of done with winter.  Even our red-tailed hawk at work has been none too impressed… she’s looking a bit cranky these days:

However… cold weather and all, James kicked ass at his race last weekend; the sun even came out for a couple of hours while he ran (he was so lucky to have sun)!  It seems I barely had enough time to get to the finish line before he crossed.  I see him work incredibly hard to get his speed up, and while he didn’t PR, he was close to it.  He’s not convinced he’ll PR in Reno because of the course and elevation (Reno is where our next big race is), but I disagree with him.  I think he has a good chance in spite of the course and elevation.

Okay… now onto MMM…

Are you familiar with Erasure?  They aren’t as big in the US as they have been in the UK.  I was surprised to learn that from 1986 to 2007, they achieved 24 consecutive top 40 hits in the UK. As well, 34 of their 45 singles and EPs have made the UK Top 40, with 17 of them climbing into the top 10 in the UK.  The only song of theirs to chart in France was “Oh L’Amour.”  To date, they have sold over 25 million albums worldwide.

All that being said, I am familiar with only two of their songs, the following being my favorite. This is one that has stood the test of time for me, so it ranks way up there.  It has a constant beat so it’s super great to run to.  If you don’t know it, take a listen.  You may have just found your new favorite song to run to.

So tell me…

  • Have you heard of Erasure?
  • If so, what’s your favorite song by them?
  • Do you have a favorite song this week that James needs to add to his MMM list?

We’re heading to a new area for long-run Sunday and hoping to meet up with a fellow blogger. I will let you know how/if that goes.  Regardless… we’re going to have new territory and a new trail to explore.  I’m actually looking forward to it, because it won’t be snowing!! Happy Sunday my friends!