Sunday, September 24, 2017

Weekly Wrap ...September 24

Last week I mentioned that I was going to run less days but do longer runs. Well that didn't happen. Since it's been so warm here, I wanted to be outside as much as possible so I continued to run several times during the week BUT because it's been so hot, my mileage was still low!

Monday- No running because I had a dinner date.

Tuesday I started running with my mom again. She's going to do some races with me this fall and next spring. She's basically starting from scratch again.  We did 2 miles running and then walked about a half mile more.  All I can say about this run was WAY TOO MUCH SUN! We even tried to take the shady roads and that did not help.

Wednesday I know I did 3 miles but I can not find any documentation!

Thursday it was another hot one but I managed to get in 4 miles. Thank goodness I had my blender bottle of water when I returned to my car!

I mentioned on Friday that I was looking forward to taking Baylee out in the bike cart this fall. Well, I just couldn't wait  so we waited until the sun went down on Friday night and took her for a practice stroll around the park. Scott pulled the cart with his bike and I ran beside. We only did a mile.

Saturday we got up early so we could take Baylee and the cart to the bike trail before it got too hot. Again, I ran beside the cart while Scott pulled it with the bike. It got too hot real quick so we only got in 2.3 miles before calling it quits.

We normally close our pool this weekend but since it was such a beautiful day Scott and I went to some outdoor markets and bought some fall decorations for our porch. We have it all decorated!  It almost doesn't feel right that it is 90 degrees and we are still swimming and then sitting on our porch all decorated with pumpkins.

Those of you who have pools, when do you usually close them? For those of you who live in the deep South, do you keep your pool open all year long?   -M

We are linking up with Holly and Tricia for their weekly wrap.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Fall Hodgepodge

I don't know about you, but I really don't follow the calendar when it comes to seasons.  I understand the whole winter/spring/summer/fall solstice but in my mind Summer starts on Memorial day and it ends on Labor Day!

However, we still experience Summer like temps into September which is nice. It's hard to want to decorate with mums and hay bales and eat pumpkin spice everything when it is still 80 degrees out, but hey we'll take it!

We've already been #EnjoyingFall by going to Dog Days in the Maze and the Harvest Festival race and festivities, and that was even before fall officially started. So now I guess we have exactly 90 days (according to the calendar) to fit in as much fall fun as we can.

So what's on tap for fall?

The biggest thing on my calendar so far is the Baltimore Marathon with some lovely runner/blogger friends!

I'm also thinking about running a Monster Dash Halloween race. It seems to be a big deal in a neighboring town and might be fun to come up with a costumer to run in.

If I still feel like running in November, I'd like to finally do a Turkey Trot. The same organization that does the 4th of July race does a Turkey Trot. It's a big race but I need to find out if that killer hill is a part of it.  That may be a deal breaker.

I'm planning a Pumpkin Party! More details on this later but I already have my pumpkin popcorn!

Not that this is exactly an event, but as soon as the weather cools off, we plan to take Baylee out to the trail in her cart I bought her last year for her birthday. Remember that?  I've been wanting to take her out but it has just been too hot for her and her little heart.  So, yes, I'm looking forward to that.

So those are 5 little things I think will be fun to do this fall.  Please remember to join us by using the #EnjoyFall hashtag on IG.   -M

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Saving little lives...sort of

Last weekend it was absolutely gorgeous out! You couldn't have asked for a better day. Baylee and I were out playing in the yard when Scott came out and said he was going to mow the lawn.

While he went to get the lawn tractor, Baylee and I walked around the yard "cleaning it up" when all of a sudden I happened upon this little guy.

Quite frankly, he kind of startled me. I was about to scoop him up into my poop bucket before I realized what it was. We had gone through this episode before several years ago, so I knew there would be more bunnies. I showed Scott the bunny and a few yards away we found the nest.

I wanted the bunny to be back in the nest with his brothers and sisters so Scott put on a pair of gloves and picked him up and put him back in the nest. As soon as he did that, another bunny jumped out! Now we had 2 bunnies out of the nest. I went into the garage to get a box to put them in so they wouldn't be laying in the yard when Scott mowed. As soon as we put the one bunny in the box, the rest of them started hopping out of the nest.

Before we knew it there were 6 bunnies running around our little front yard and up on our porch. I quickly put Baylee in the house. I didn't think she would attack the bunnies but I didn't want them to be startled by her. Honestly, I think she was more startled by all of them. She probably thought "what in the world is going on"?

Okay, so in the end, we did not put all the bunnies in a box. Scott was able to gather all 6 of them up (because I wanted them to be together), and placed them in them underneath the Holly bushes in our landscaping near the porch. They would be safe from the mower there. My job was to stand watch and make sure they did not scamper out into the yard, which they did not. Through this whole ordeal, we had our little neighbor boy (who is 6) in our yard with us. He really thought that was something to see with all those bunnies scampering around!

If you are wondering why we went through all this to make sure these bunnies were safe, it's because many years ago when we first moved here Scott accidentally rode over a bunnies nest that he did not see and those bunnies were not so lucky. From that point on, we've become more aware. -M

Monday, September 18, 2017

Harvest Festival 5K Race

This weekend I ran the Harvest 5K with my dad, sister, and friend.  I've run this race several times and even placed first in my age group before, but I haven't ran it in a few years.  I was hoping I could place first again.

The race is a local race, so even though I did not register ahead of time, the cost was only $15 which is a bargain. The race started  at 9:30 am which is normally a good thing since it's not too early but the weather this weekend did not feel like fall at all, it was more like a hot summer day. It would have been better if it was earlier to beat the heat and humidity.

We didn’t even leave the house until 8:45 am (it is only a 1.5 away from our house). Once I arrived, I went into the Municipal building and signed up for the race, and was able to use real restrooms which is always a plus.

Yes, the start line is right in front of the McDonalds!

Then we made our way over to the race start where they were starting a kids race. We watched that race then we began to make our way to the start line.

We lined up and there was a gun shot start and we were off. The course is a flat route that loops around the main portion of the town. It's kind of nice that it's all decorated festive for fall.  Of course I started off way too fast. I told myself I needed to slow down since we were only a quarter mile into the race. I did pass one lady, but then soon enough two other ladies passed me. Does anyone else eye up their competition?

 I thought ok there is only two other ladies ahead of me now, not knowing what their age group would be in since you only see their back when they are passing you. Shortly after, there was another lady that passed me. She did look a little younger than me but I wasn’t sure. I was struggling to keep up with the pace I was running, but I kept telling myself it’s only a 5k I can push myself more! I know you shouldn’t say “just” in any race because it’s an accomplishment but I am used to running much longer distances, not thinking of the pace you are trying to withstand for the distance. That is the challenging part.
Pictures are blurry because it was so humid.

We were coming up to the last stretch of the race and I knew there were three females still ahead of me. There was no way I was going to catch up to the first two, but the third one was right ahead of me. So I kicked it in high gear right at the end to make sure I crossed the finish line right before her, and I did!  After crossing, I was able to get my results printed out right away. I looked at the sheet and I saw I came in third. I was a bit disappointed since the last time I came in first.

Then I looked at the paper more closely and saw that I placed third female overall and 1st in my age group, with an average pace of 6:45. I felt much better about this.

My dad even placed 3rd in his age group. We waited for our medals to be handed out then we treated ourselves to a cupcake and whoopie pie. After eating that, I thought heck I better run home instead. So I ran the mile and half back to the house.  -L

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Weekly Wrap ....September 17

September seems to be just flying by us already! Even though Fall "officially" starts this week, it certainly doesn't feel like fall here. That's okay though. I tried to #EnjoyFall last weekend by going to Dog Days in the corn Maze which was a blast, and this past week I enjoyed it by running our annual Harvest Festival 5K with my family. I thought maybe I would #EnjoyFall by getting a Fall like beverage but with weather like this, who needs a hot drink?

This week I continued to train for the Harvest 5K race which was on Saturday. Last year, I was determined to place in my age group so I ran this route almost every day over the summer.  It paid off because I won 2nd place.

This summer I did not run the route at all. I just started running it a few weeks ago.  Probably that coupled with the heat and humidity and a very stiff left leg, made for a challenging race for me on Saturday morning. Needless to say, I did not place. Even though I usually finish somewhere in the 20's for this race, The third place female in my age group finished in 23 minutes. I knew I couldn't beat that anyway so I really wasn't that upset about not placing.

My sister had a better race than I did so I will let her give a race recap later this week.

I did enjoy the rest of the afternoon though. After the race we enjoyed the festival a bit. We got some fall treats from a cupcake truck and shopped around at some other food and craft vendors.  Later that afternoon, we walked back to town to watch some of the Harvest parade.  We had to leave before it was over because I had a date later that evening.

This was the balloon I was scheduled to fly in. It's name is "Lucy in the sky with diamonds".

So my date was that Scott had bought me a ticket for a hot air balloon ride.  I had never done one of these before and ever since we visited Sedona in 2009, it was something I've wanted to do.  I was told to wear long pants, closed shoes, and wear layers. So I did. I hated the thought of putting jeans on since it was like 90 degrees out.  When we got to the debriefing area and people started to show up I increasingly became more agitated. I was sweating bullets in my jeans and sneakers while other people were wearing shorts and flip flops.  I immediately texted my friend Megan who is a fellow rule follower to share my disgust (it must be a teacher thing).  She shared with me a similar incident.  Nobody said anything to the people who were dressed inappropriately. Anyway, our Flight was delayed once for weather. It was an absolutely beautiful day out but they could see a storm in the direction we were suppose to fly. Then at 5:15 pm they officially cancelled the flight. by 5:20 pm , it was pouring buckets. Of course I was a little disappointed but understand that safety comes first.

This week and this weekend were very busy and I'm looking forward to a bit of slower pace this coming week. Now that the 5K is over, I planned to do less running this week. I will run longer, just not as many days.   -M

We are linking up with Holly and Tricia for their Weekly Wrap.

Friday, September 15, 2017

The Most Shocking things I've seen on my running routes

I tend to come across a lot of crazy stuff on my runs. Is it just coincidence or am I am pretty observant runner? I don't know. I guess maybe my running routes are just more entertaining than most! Or maybe I just tend to run at the wrong place at the wrong time!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Dog Days in the Maze

On Sunday my mom and I took Belle and Baylee to Dog Days in the Maze. The corn maze was located at a local Christmas Tree farm which transforms into a fall playground.

There were plenty of activities to choose from but we chose to do the corn maze.  The maze was $10 for adults and free for the dogs. There was actually tax on top of our admission price which I was surprised about and had to go back out to my car to get some change.

When I paid the admission for us, we were each given a wrist band, a map, and a "suspect card".  I had never done a corm maze before so I had no idea what to expect. I  didn't think it was going to be a scavenger hunt, but that certainly made it fun.

Here were the rules:

 corn maze

Pick a trail: short (red) or long (green).  We chose to do the long trail at over 3.2 miles. Of course we went over 3 miles because we didn't exactly know which way we were going.

Stamp your card at each station to show that you checked in there. There were 12 stations and each had a different stamp.  We checked in at all 12 stations. Some of them we found by accident.

There were 3 Santas on the course and you had to take selfies (or dog photos) with each of them if you could find them.  We found all three. If you share your pics on their Facebook page you get entered in a contest for a gift certificate to their store. They claim to have the largest Christmas Ornament Store.

Also, there were clue cards.

There were pictures set up in the maze (these were more difficult to find), and in the picture you had to look for a suspect, a weapon, and a location.  Again, each one had a different stamp. As you can see, we only found 3 sets of them. If you found all of them, you were entered for a prize.

If it was just my mom and I, we probably would have played around in the maze until we found all the suspects, but it was really hot and I had forgotten the water bottle for the dogs in the car.

Belle's wearing her Lion Mane!

I thought since the event was geared towards dogs today, that they might have water stations set up in the maze, but they didn't. They did however, have large water bowls at the entrance and exit of the maze, so we did walk out twice so the dogs could get a drink. ( I don't normally let my dog drink out of community dog bowls but I made an exception since it was so hot and they had walked so far).

This was my first time in a corn maze and I can actually say it was a lot of fun and I wouldn't mind doing it again sans dogs. There are a few nights where they do it at night and you need flashlights. I'm not sure if I would want to go at that time.

Oh, and it turned out even though we checked in at all 12 check points, we only needed to check in at the 6 that were along the green route, I don't know what we were thinking, but we had fun!

Have you ever done a a corn maze? If so, was it like a scavenger hunt?  -M   #EnjoyFall

Monday, September 11, 2017

Stories from the trail

I have a few regular routes that I normally run. I pick these routes because they are safe and comfortable. One of my favorites is the Rail Trail.  I haven't been going to the Rail Trail as often as I would like for two reasons. 1) It's a farther drive than my other routes. It's not far, but my other routes are closer, that's all.   2) I don't feel the need to go if I'm not running long distance. The trail is great for long distance running as you can easily do 18 miles on it. You can do more if you deviated off the trail and loop through some of the neighborhoods along it. This was my route during the two marathons I trained for.

On Friday,  it was warm and sunny all day and I couldn't wait to get out for a run when work was over. On the way home it started to rain and by the time I got home I had noticed the rain had significantly cooled things off.  I had to run some errands near the trail, so I thought why not make an evening of it.  I put on a pair of running capris, a tank, and debated on whether or not to bring my windbreaker in case it started to rain again.  Because I putzed around at the house, I didn't get to the trail till around 6:00 pm.

I decided to mix things up a bit. Because my errands were at the other end of town, I decided to park at the trail head that was 5 miles into the trail. I've never done this before.  I've of course ran down this  way before, but never started here.  Because I haven't been running long distances lately, I haven't been down this way in a while. (I'm not saying 5 miles is long distance, but 10 miles is and that's what I would have had to be running to get here : 5 miles up and 5 miles back.

Anyway, as I got out of my car, I just had to take a minute tp look at how lovely things are here. It really started making me excited for Fall but I quickly realized I was SO completely overdressed!
The rain may have cooled things down for a bit, but it got real hot real fast. And I'm in pants/capris.

  Since it was already 6pm, I was wondering how many miles I could "safely" run before it gets dark. If you've been reading this blog for any amount of time, you've quickly realized that I don't always make the best decisions when it comes to running. When I come to run, I stay on the trail and get it done regardless of daylight or weather situations. Well, I'm changing my ways and want to be a more "responsible runner"!

Well, apparently the "responsible runner" was not starting today! After doing a very speedy first mile, I quickly realized that I forgot my water bottle at home.  I was already overheated from wearing these black pants and now knowing that I would not have any water waiting for when I got back to the car made me nervous.  Because I  still had to get my errands done after this run, I decided to stop at only two. I am not calling this run a "wimp out" run though because they were 2 of the fasted miles I've run in a long time. The second was even faster than the first, which hardly ever happens!

Check out some of the things I've seen on the trail.

Behind this sign was a little hut with drinks and goodies. I did not bring any money with me so I did not have anything but I noticed they had Oreo Whoopie Pies. I've never had an Oreo flavored one before but it sounds yummy. If you are not from the East Coast I realize you may not know what a Whoopie pie is.  Even though I didn't have anything, I thought this was nice to see.

I saw this little guy too. I've seen him before.  He's a miniature pony. Although I don't know where he lives during the night, during the day his family ties him on a rope out in front of their yard, kind of like a dog. (But let it be known I would never tie my dog out on a rope).  Anyway, I find it rather odd. The rope isn't even that long either. I wonder if they do it just to entertain the people using the trail?  One of these days I want to go up an pet him but I suppose I should seek permission first.

Even though I only spent a short amount of time here, it is making me excited to spend more time here this fall.   -M

What did you see along your last run? Have you ever had a Whoopie pie?

                                            We will be linking up with the gals from TOTR.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Weekly Wrap....September 10

I feel guilty rambling on about how my week went when in reality it seems so insignificant when I know my friends in Florida are worried about losing their homes. In between our activities this weekend, I would make a point to turn on the Weather Channel and keep up to date with what Hurricane Irma was doing (as I'm sure most of America was doing).  My Uncle lives in Tampa, but fortunately he is up here with us now.  I'm going to guess that things there will not be the same when he returns.

Since this post is suppose to be about the Weekly Wrap, I guess that's what I'll get into. No more talk about the weather.  If you are a regular reader, than you know that I am all about making the best of my time. I like to accomplish tasks and I hate wasting time. The week before last, I was literally sick all week! Yea, I hadn't even been back to school for 5 days and already I contracted  #AllTheGerms.  Needless to say, there was no running and no activity.  That's why there was no weekly wrap either.  I was SO glad to have Friday  and Monday off last week because I really needed the rest!

Here's a peek as to how the following week went.

It makes me sad (and actually a bit angry) when I miss out on runs when the weather is still warm out. I feel like I have to savor it while it is still here!  I missed so much good running weather last week so, I wanted to get out as much as I could this week. 

Monday was Labor Day. After not running for a week, I wanted to get out and see what I could do. I donned some patriotic apparel and went out for a Run-Walk with a friend that morning. I didn't want to full on run because I still wouldn't be up to it, but those run intervals did feel good. We did 3.1 miles.  We actually did the race course for this weekend.

Later that day I did some boating with my parents. My dad caught 4 fish and  we saw 3 deer and multiple Blue Herrings. It was a lovely day on the water although it was a bit choppy at points.

Wednesday I had an awesome run! I didn't think I would be able to run the entire time due to my chest pain, but I did!  I did the race route again and was happy to see that the fall festival decorations were up.

Friday I had a another great run!  This was a late run for me. I went to the rail trail but didn't end up even starting my run till around 6:00 pm.  This was a short run but I do have some things I want to say about it so I'll share it in another post since this one is getting too long already.

I know my teammates for the Baltimore Marathon Relay are probably thinking  "Is she ever going to run more than 3 miles?".  I assure you I will! I have a 5k on Saturday and then after that I will start increasing my mileage. Promise! -M

             Tell me about one of your runs this week? What did you do on Labor Day?

                                 Are you participating in the #EnjoyFall IG challenge?

We are linking up with Holly and Tricia and the weekly hostess for their weekly wrap.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Use #EnjoyFall for this challenge!

It's that time of year again where you'll start seeing the quintessential "Fall Bucket List" or  "Must Do Activities for Fall", as if we couldn't possibly think of going to a pumpkin patch or taking a hay ride all on our own. Somehow, seeing it on Pinterest makes the idea new again!

However, as an adult without children, there are some things on the list that I know I probably won't do, like the pumpkin patch and the hayride. And don't get me started on the apple picking. Everyone and their brother seems to be excited about apple picking!  I've never even bought more than 4 apples at the grocery store, why would I need an entire bushel? 

Even though I prefer Summer, I am not a Debbie Downer about Fall and I plan to make the most of it for sure.  Just because you aren't going to said pumpkin patch, apple orchard, or hayride, doesn't mean you are not enjoying the season!  

For that reason my sister and I created an Instagram challenge/Scavenger Hunt to show how you #EnjoyFall.
I know this is the Friday 5, but we each came up with 5 to make it more interesting.

Feel free to save this image for reference. 

Please join us on IG by using #EnjoyFall and if you think about it, tag us @Fairytalesnfit so we can see your photo instantly. 

Monday, September 4, 2017

My Thoughts on Rock n Roll VA Beach...6 Years Running

Hi guys, I know I've been MIA most of the summer but I wanted to pop in and share my VA Beach Half marathon experience.

 Rock n Roll Virginia Beach is one of the races I always look forward to.  It's a fun weekend with all the bands that play each night at the oceanfront. Although this year, I just wasn’t feeling it. The weather was gloomy and rainy the start of the weekend and it continued that way through Saturday evening. Luckily it did cool things off for the race on Sunday so that was nice. And no rain race day, even better! 

Friday, I found out that the band 311 got canceled due to weather. Two years in a row this band got canceled!  The expo wasn’t even that great or maybe I just felt that way because I have been to so many and they are pretty much all the same. Usually Rock n Roll puts on a good expo and they have interactive activities in the Brooks area, but there was nothing but a bunch of space this year. As you can tell, I didn't even take any pictures.  I knew there were no upcoming races for me so there wasn’t any need to purchase anything else. I grabbed my bib and shirt, and I was out of there.   

Saturday I wasn’t even going to plan on going to the concert anyway even if it was nice because I wanted to get a good night sleep before the race.  Turns out the concert had moved into the Convention Center due to the weather. It was a band I didn’t even recognize so no loss there. 

Sunday morning I woke up much earlier than I anticipated. I had a coffee and bagel then I was out the door. Normally the race starts at the Convention Center but this year it started on 14th street so we wanted to leave a bit earlier to make sure we found parking.  Luckily I still had my parking pass from when I worked at the oceanfront. I wasn’t sure if it was going to work, but we were able to swipe right into the garage. Score! It was only a few blocks from the start line, so that worked out perfect. The restaurant is connected to a hotel and we were able to even go in to use the restroom. 

We arrived at the starting line in plenty of time.  I hate getting to a start too early and then just waiting around, but better early than late. My run buddy and I decided we weren’t going to run together this year because I didn’t want to hold him back. He was planning to do a training run to prepare for his marathon the following week (it is Erie, if you’re curious).  

After the countdown the first corral was off. I made sure I was in the back of the corral so I didn’t start out too fast. That didn’t help any. I felt like I was running effortless and I looked down at my watch and I was about 40 seconds under what I normally run. Ok Lace, you need to slow down or you’re never going to be able to make it through, I told myself. Usually at races I set my watch to beep so I know if I am above or below a certain pace. This time I forgot so I had to continue looking down at my watch to make sure I wasn’t going too fast. I finally settled in and found a comfortable pace I could keep.  

Miles 1-6 the temperature was comfortable and I was feeling good just cruising and singing along with my Ipod. I thought I should stop to get a drink, since I never carry any water. I don’t know why but Gatorade sounded good to me at the time so I had that and washed it down with some water as well. If I plan to stop at an aid station, I do stop. I move to the side so I am out of the way and drink. I find I don’t lose that much time by stopping and drinking for a few seconds, rather than trying to run and drink and spill  more down the front of my shirt than in my mouth.  

Usually the half way point is where they hand out GUs but this year they were handing out GU gummies. I grabbed a pack but then realized the pouch was going to be too hard to open on the run and then chewing gummies sounded like too much work. So, I quickly threw it back to one of the volunteers because I didn’t feel like carrying them the rest of the way.  

I was about at mile 9 and usually by this time I would have had a GU. I even had one I brought in my pocket (just in case). But I didn’t feel like I needed it, so I just stopped at another aid station for some more Gatorade and water. I was coming up on mile 11 and the temperatures were much warmer than the start. I thought maybe I should have that GU. But I only have two more miles so I can just push through. And then I saw them…ice pops! Now I am not one to usually take things like that along the way, but I thought why not? And that is just what I needed. I did feel like it gave me a little more pep in my step. Those last two miles flew by (and yes I ran while eating it). I thought well I wasn’t going to break the time I had last year so let me just enjoy it. That ice pop was so refreshing and even cooled me off a bit while the sun was beating down on me during this time.

               After one incline over the bridge I was in route of the finish line on the boardwalk. 

 I crossed the finished line 3 minutes slower than I did last year. But I was perfectly fine with that since I haven’t been running much due to my crazy work schedule. I’m glad that fall is coming and things have settled down which will allow me more time to get my runs in.  

After I crossed the finish line, I found my friend, took a quick picture, then it was off to brunch. We didn’t stick around for the bands that were playing because we knew we were planning on coming back that evening for the headliner.

 The Wallflowers opened for 3 Doors Down. I was so exhausted from the day that I even thought about not going back for the concert. But that is why we do this race to get into the concerts for free all weekend. Once there, I was happy I decided to go and knew a lot more songs than I thought I would.  

So that wraps up my 6th year running the RnR Va Beach half Marathon.  Even though I always look forward to this weekend, I kind of have a been there done that feel for it now.  Unless there is some really awesome bands I want to see, I may be open to trying some new races over Labor Day weekend. Of course I say this now but ask me next year at this time what I'll be doing!  -L

                                                        We will be linking up with the gals from TOTR