Monday, December 31, 2007




MILES: 1961.77

TIME: 326 hr 45 min


Nemo: 435 miles

Little Dirt Dawg: 42 miles (baby jogger)

Dirrty Feather: 100 miles (baby jogger)


1. Finished 50 miler in 8 hr 39 min

2. Lowered marathon PR by 14 min to 3 hr 33 min

3. Little Dirt Dawg ran his first big race!

4. Dirrty Feather joined Team Dirt

5. Team Dirt competed in a couple of events as a family

6. The wildly successful Fun Run Series with me as crack race director and participant entered its second year.

As I take some time to sit back and look at all that has happened this year, I was more than happy with all that transpired. My running took off to new heights and I firmly believed it is because as having two small kids you have to be smart with your time and training. Please note that b.k. (before kids) i was a master putzer and could wittle the day away without doing anything. That is why runs now occur @ 4:45 am and family runs replace after school jaunts, sans the FUN RUN series!

In 2008 my goals are simple:

1. Run as much as possible with my family for both fun and @ races.

2. Help Dirrty Girl do another 1/2 marathon

3. D.D.M.C. --- Details Forthcoming :)

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Full Tilt Review

For Xmas, Dirrty Girl got me the Tilt to replace my dead laptop and Treo 680. Sans the less than 1 mexapixel camera and lack of 3G, the Treo served its purpose and was used to create many a blog that all 3 of you read.

So, I have until Jan 13th to decide if I want to keep the Tilt or return it in favor of another. Maybe the new Blackjack? Feel free to weigh in.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Who would have thought

That a quiet evening could be considered going to Wally Mart? Yup, that's right, peace and tranquility along every third person wearing a Steelers jersey, the where were you in 82 hairdo and Dirrty Girl stating, " I love going here because @ am the smallest lady by like 25 lbs!" can all be had after loading up the fam and heading to C. Lake, Pa for a couple of days of family drama.

On our way over to WM, Dirrty Girl said all she wanted to do was run, run away that is! First rule of thumb I told her was that I always pack my running gear before I ever pack the rest of my clothes to ensure that if nothing else my daily dose of therapy is available.

Here is to a few days of family drama and a few good days of running to hopefully balance it out.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

One Speed Mind

My once dormant Marin Hawk Hill has been resuscitated thanks to the Mechanics in Motion class at school under the tutelage of master mechanic Twinkle Toes. Transformed into a slick single speed, I was able to get out for a ride this afternoon and test a bike that brought back memories of a simpler time of riding. No thoughts about shifting into the correct gear to ride up an incline or to gain speed down a hill. Just one speed. Fun.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

2nd Annual Snowman Shuffle

With the holiday break just one more day away, it was time for the weekly fun run to commence but not without some holiday spirit. To celebrate, the 2nd annual snowman shuffle was on tap and with an added bonus. Last year, participants were encouraged to dress up in holiday adornment for extra points, but this year I came up with what I thought was a good idea.

Putting my non artistic talents to work, I created t-shirts that were available to participants. Instead of asking for any reimbursement, I asked them to donate $ to a staff member who was helping with a local Coats for Kids drive.

The shirts flew out of my hands and $ was raised. Twinkle "Santa" Toes even went so boldly as to don a full Santa suit which he ran the entire 3.30 mile course in. When asked why not skip the hat or even beard and boots when it came time for the run, he said "I fully accepted the commitment and responsibility of the suit when I donned it."

Heading into the break, 11 participants have participated in 16 weekly fun runs culminating in over 300 miles this school year alone. Two participants, J-No and Chai Tea Latte have participated in all 16! And to think this all started from just trying to squeeze some extra miles in after work.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Knee Warmers

After this morning's run which was relatively slow and slippery, I set out for work with a list of errands to do before picking up Little Dirt Dawg for his big PK3 Holiday Concert which included dropping off movies (Two big thumbs up for Superbad and a big disappointment for Ocean's 13). However, as I started on these errands, I thought if I waited until the family was down, then I could run uptown, drop the movies off, take in some holiday lights, and get a few extra miles in. Is it a bad thing to map out errands to run so that you can get extra miles in? I certainly think not!
With the kids down, Dirrty Girl said since you are going to be out, why not stop @ the post office and take Twinkle Toes over some extra food for lunch tomorrow. Love it that Dirrty Girl excepts the wierdness of running and with goofy socks.
Seeing as I was going out on the town to check out some lights, I found it only fitting to don my holiday socks with fringe. Man are those things warm. By the end of my mini excursion which lasted 4.32 miles my knees were sweating!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Sweet Spot

Meterologists today called it the "Sweet Spot", referring the winter storm that brought 6+ inches of the fluffy goodness to the Metro Detroit area. With the roads untreated, it presented the perfect opportunity to don my xc skis and head out on a little trek around town. Thumbs up from motorists actually moving, and a few disgruntled words from those stuck as a I glided down the streets and got in a little cross training.

Little Dirt Dawg likewise did a little cross training himself by shoveling the sidewalk in between the copious amounts of time spent playing and sledding.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Spreading the Cheer

After being out of the office for a conference , and another in which I got to play Mr. Mom, I came in today to find that Christmas had thrown up in my office. It all started innocently enough on a collaboration with one of my students on the DC Tree and had spawned into the tackiest display of Christmas outside of a convienance store trying to get you into the spirit. Staff originally shot down the idea of putting up any decorations around the school and had cancelled the luncheon, but with the DC Tree it hadsome how ignited holidaycheer and apparently many including my boss had gotten into the idea of turning my office into a Winter Wonderland. No one would speak to any direct involvement, but the rumor was that cash was dispensed and orders given to head to the dollar store and find the tackiest xmas items available.

Now the DC tree had some company including 3 large paper christmas trees with ornaments poked through the paper that students have now started to autograph, my dry erase board adorned with garland, a string of multi colored lights around my desk,and the beloved turkey with a new hairdo.

Tacky as it might seem. I LOVE IT!!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

DC Tree

It started out merely as me being to lazy to take my Diet Coke can from lunch to the staff lounge to deposit them. Soon, I had a pile that was building and then thought to myself, hmm, maybe should see how high I can build a tower before a) an angry student knocks it over or b) my boss tells me to take it down.
With the holiday luncheon recently canceled and no decorations, I stumbled across a great idea after being forwarded a pic of a xmas tree comprised entirely of beer bottles, we could fashion a tree out of the DC pile! Surely, this would ensure that the boss could not haul it into the staff lounge for cash redemption and maybe calm down students.
Thursday, I enlisted a staff member on getting a straw with a star attached to be the top of our tree. A bit while later, him and a student came back with a perfectly fashioned star adorned with glitter, and oh how the custodial loved me for that one. Later on that day, someone brought astrand of lights that we just looped around the bottom of the tree until we could figure out a design that would support the weight of the lights and called it a day.
Yesterday, the design was in full force as both staff and students became intrigued by this mountain of DC cans with lights haphazardly tossed around it. One staff told me he had a design in mind and that several other staff were also brainstorming, but it was one of my Aspy students who stepped forward and took the challenge. As we stood around the tree, I said that if we could someone design the tree to look like one of those prelit trees that all we had to do was just plug it in and leave that would be ideal. He agreed and thought that using some sand and hot glue to bond the layers together might be in order.
As I came back from lunch I was surprised to see my work in progress to be missing in action and was informed by the secretary that it was being taken care of. Not too long after that, that same student came up to the office with a grin spread across his face to show the tree he had designed for me. It was perfect! Not only does it have character, but this student who is usually so rigid in this thinking due to his disability really stretched himself on this project and it turned out to be a great life lesson that no one at the outset of this silly little idea could have predicted. Those are the days in education that make all the really difficult ones when you feel like you are not making any progress worth it.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Light accumulation may...

Result in some slick spots. So was the message that greeted me on my computer this morning as I consulted the weather before beginning the delicate and arduous task of layering for my morning ramble.

With a light coating awaiting me, out went the plans for a 5 mile tempo run and a newly remixed shuffle playlist and in was 1 border collie ready to blaze a fresh trail through untouched white powder.

Two things I am always guaranteed when snow accumulates:

1. At some point during a run I will have to stop and unpack the snow that has accumulated inside the paws of my dog rendering him to skipping along
2. No matter how much extra precaution I take (slowing down, wearing my highly reflective running jacket) due to the weather, drivers are still notoriously stupid and slide through intersection or roll through stops and then offer you the fakest wave as an excuse as if to say " I really did mean to stop"

As I sit here writing this during work, a staff member asked me if I ran in this weather this morning and doesn't it make your lungs freeze?

Secretly I just chuckled knowing that winter running is one of the prettiest times of the long as you are prepared.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Dripping Rock Trail

With the kids safely deposited @ gparents for approx 30 hrs, Dirrty Girl and I headed down to Cbus to hangout with Missile and Lightning.

Located just outside Cbus, the Dripping Rock Trail is a 2.5 mile wide open loop part of the Highbanks Metropark (free entry!) system. You are either going up or down and Lightning and I make quick work of 2 loops as we discussed marathon training plans for either Flying Pig or Cleveland next year. If Lightning gets it in gear, and trains for either, hopefully I can join him in his pursuit of marathon glory and it can be a stop on an idea I have been toying with for 08.

Details to follow......