Wednesday, October 23, 2013

~Fall Trail Special~

I had this great idea that I would do a Vlog (video blog) a couple of weeks ago, and I even posted one to Google+ ...

It was up for 5 minutes and then took it down as fast as I could. O_o
Not sure what inspired me to put myself out there on video, but maybe I'll try that again next year..heh.
Maybe not.
Instead, readers are stuck blessed with a photo blog of my adventures over the last few weeks.

There has been a fair bit of good fall weather here, so it would be a sorry thing not to lace up my PureGrits and take them for some old-fashioned abuse! Brooks would be proud. (HoneyStinger should be too, though I have been eating a years supply of goodies I planned to use for racing and training fuel as snacks.)

  Ridgeline trail ~ Eugene, OR


This year my boys are in school one day a week, (I still home school the other 4 days).
It's been an adjustment for us all; but, one perk has been that I am in the Eugene area weekly now, and am free to run trails for a few hours that day! :D

I'm so grateful my parents will watch our youngest while I go running on Ridgeline, or one of the other local paths.
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Another spot I have fallen in love with is Cooper Creek Reservoir. There are views of the blue/green reservoir through the woods almost the whole way.
 Cooper Creek Reservoir ~Sutherlin, OR




This trail is almost 7 miles if ran as an out-and-back.  It's easy to re-run part of the trail to add in some more mileage. And, I'm the kind of nut who would do it three times to make a very rolling 20 miler (Someday... not anytime soon).

I was there on the weekend and ran into 2 or 3 groups of people. On a weekday I would be surprised to see anyone at all.
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Most recently, I was able make a trip I've been wanting to do for some time: a close-to-home "destination run" ~  the North Umpqua Trail.



 At the top of "Bob's Butte" with new friends! ↑ 




A Facebook group of Roseburg area runners met and covered a short section (just over 7 miles of the 79 mile trail) together, taking many stops to rest, stretch and take pictures -- perfect for where I am with running right now.

We had a great time visiting, getting to know each other, talking about anything and everything, and taking in the gorgeous fall scenery.    I can't wait to go back!
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Things have been going well, but this week is a cutback for me. It's very easy for me to try to keep adding to my mileage when things feel as good as they have....It's much harder to restrain myself when the weather is great and I have more opportunities to run. 

I'm still running much lower mileage than I was at last year at this point, but, considering the restart I made in August, I've put in quite a bit of time on the trails and gravel roads in the last few weeks. I tried moving from 3-4 runs a week to 5.
This is a lazy graph, because I'm not bothering to tinker with the colors right now. 
Almost all running has been at easy heart rate (< 140) and about half on trails or gravel.

Now my foot is giving me hints that it would like to adjust for a bit. This time I will take the cues- A cutback is in order. I am trying to remind myself this is still more running than I did when I first started out on my journey- and I had no injury issues to contend with back then. It's about keeping a positive perspective, enjoying each run, and staying smart right now. And a massage with some stretching doesn't hurt either...

I don't know what's in store for the rest of the year for running. I'm considering a low key race in November. That may, or may not, be able to happen. Either way, I am blessed just to be back "in it" and able to enjoy the incredible trails Oregon has to offer.

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How do you feel about taking cutback weeks? 

Have you ran any fantastic destination runs lately?

Does the idea of a VLog make you nervous? 





45 comments:

  1. I know I'm running well and things are going great if it's a reduced mileage week and it kinda bums me out that I have to lighten up a little. But if I'm at a place where I can't wait for the week of rest, its usually a red flag that I'm over-training or maybe some potential health issues. Fortunately, reducing my mileage lately has made the former of these two more common. Also, I made a vlog/training video once - it took me like 75 tries to get the speaking part to where I didn't feel like a big ol' hillbilly - ha. When I watch it now, I'm like "Man, that doesn't sound natural at all." Kinda funny.

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    1. I've only seen one of your Vlogs, but was impressed! However many tries it took you to do it, it turned out very professional. Thanks for your thoughts on the cutback- have a great week, Jim!

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  2. Hey Raina, such a happy post! Love it, and love the pics. Gorgeous! So excited for your weekly hours on the trails while the boys are in school. Tell me more about their one day/week in school! Very curious! Vlog - you are brave, ha! I don't dare post one. Not only would I have to look at myself, but I would also have to hear myself, nope, ha! Enjoy your running and beautiful views. Yes, Brooks and Honey Stingers should be SO proud to have you on board! XO

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    1. Awesome to hear from you, AM! It takes some real bravery to post a VLog- and That is why mine came down. hahahaha.
      Thanks for the kind words! I will fill you in some more about the boys school. ♥

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  3. Haha! You are so funny you took your vlog down. Darn I missed it! Those trails are stunning. Glad you are enjoying and I'm super glad you are listening to your body and knowing when to cut back. I totally believe in cutback weeks. Heck, this has been a cutback year for me.

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    1. Yeah...Nothing like video to show you (me) how dorky you (I) really are (am)!
      Cutback week on a cutback year for me too- But we are still running and that is the important thing! Thanks for coming by Marcia.

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  4. Those trails are beautiful! It must feel amazing to run them in such cool weather. We are finally hitting a point in our weather when I can go out and enjoy some trails.

    What are your children doing during their one day of school a week? (if these questions are too nosey, feel free to ignore them. I'm a public school teacher, but my cousins were homeschooled K-12.) Was this decision for social or academic reasons?

    Cutback weeks- I hate them and rarely get them, but then my body forces me into them. Ick, like now, I've come down with some sort of flu/virus thingie that is forcing me to rest. ;/

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    1. Thanks R! Yes, the weather here has been so nice- since the rain went away for a while :)

      Since you are the second to ask, my boys are attending a charter school academy that has them attending one day. Parents are welcome to be there that day. It's a classical style education with a lot of memory work, focus on character, and the school records grades. I do 4 days of lessons at home and on their school day, they turn in work, get to be with kids (in uniform) in a classroom, do art, latin, geography, history, science, math (with a tutor), reading, writing, drawing, phonics and lots of memory work. The classroom day is a chance for them to shine to peers and for parents to connect with teachers who design the curriculum and correct it. Parents teach the bulk of it at home and have the school as a resource for help. It's public, so we only have to pay activity fees.
      It has been to our social and academic benefit. :)
      Have a great week!

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    2. Wow, that sounds GREAT for your kiddos! It really sounds like the best of both worlds (home school and traditional schooling)! Way to go, mom!

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  5. I love the trails so thanks for the beautiful photos! I'm not a big one for cutback weeks but know I must do them when needed. I usually cut back every 4 to 5 weeks. I am not one for vlogging yet.

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    1. Thanks for commenting, Johann! You are welcome :)
      I hope you are getting in some nice trail runs there!

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  6. So happy! Love that you get to hit the trails so much now! And that you are running!! Period. The PureGrits...great shoe! I've been wearing my Cascadias a lot more lately though. But I wear the Grits a ton even not on trails. Beautiful Oregon! I'm wondering what the trails are like In Bend, OR...that might be a nice place to live...hmmm. ;)

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    1. Interesting that you wear the grits off the trail! I had a pair of cascadias, but they didn't work for me- too wide. Maybe an updated version will! Your thinking of Bend :) ? That would be nice!!!

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  7. Hi Raina!! So happy to read this and see your gorgeous pictures. I need to wipe the drool off my keyboard now... Mostly, I am just happy to hear you are running more and enjoying the beautiful trails near you. Sadly, no running at all for me still but I'm hopeful that I'll get back out there soon -- I need to write a post to update on my knee status. It's just been too hard for me to stay inside and sit at a computer while we are having such a beautiful Fall! :) xoxo

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    1. Aw.. I am sorry you are still not running. I'd like to know how the knee is coming along, Kristen. I have faith you'll be out there again before much longer. hugs!!

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  8. Cutback weeks are a great idea - energizes you to start working hard again soon! Here's a vlog tip (even though I've never made one) - don't read off of a sheet of paper!!! That's on my mind because that's what happened in the last vlog I watched. Your kids will have fun going to school once a week (I've seen numerous homeschooling opportunities like that) and it's great that you get a chance to run in new territory!

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    1. Haha!! I will remember not to do that! Very good advice, Tina :) You should do a Vlog-- I would like to see it.
      Thanks for the encouragement regarding school. We are definitely having fun, but working hard in the process.

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  9. Oh those pictures are so beautiful! You Oregon bloggers are the best tourism ads possible for your area! I want to come run there!!

    A vlog is NOT for me. All I would see is how stupid I look/sound. I prefer pictures, where eventually I can find one that doesn't look hideous. :)

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    1. Come on out, Kate :) !! We could make the world's worst Vlog together ;D on ~Fall Trail Special~

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  10. I'm sure the video wasn't that bad! I have wanted to make one for a while, but just haven't got around to it. Let me know the next time you're going to do a weekend trail adventure run. I'd be up for driving up to 45 min or so to explore some trails. Glad you're getting in some miles on the Ridgeline and down in your area!

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    1. I'd love to do that, Lauren! . Two trails I would like to hit are near there, McKenzie- but i think that's a longer drive, and Shotgun Creek :)
      We should email!

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  11. "It's very easy for me to try to keep adding to my mileage when things feel as good as they have....It's much harder to restrain myself when the weather is great and I have more opportunities to run."
    Ooooh boy. Do I identify with that statement. I love reading your blog and hearing your thoughts because you are SO smart about running. I'm glad things are going better for you with running and I love seeing all those trail photos.

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    1. Thanks a lot, Angie, for the encouraging words! Hope you are enjoying your easy-smart build up too!

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  12. Absolutely gorgeous trails you have! I'm with Kate. I'd love to come out there and run some day.

    Definitely take the rest even though you would rather not. You can do an easy hike on a rest day and take even more pictures. :-)

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    1. Thanks Mike! You are right about the pictures and hiking. I hope to take my boys soon and do just that :)

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  13. I have never done a Vlog either. Scary stuff. But honestly I hardly ever look at any one else's either. I just don't find them all that interesting. Your pics are beautiful.

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    1. Ah! I love it !!! You are honest... yes it takes time to watch and usually they are not that great. But I have been surprised a few times. :) Thanks for the comment! I can't wait to see if you have a blog, Elle.

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  14. Those look like some amazing places to run! I've never done a vlog, I'm very nervous about possibility of doing one!

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    1. Thanks Laura!! They are super.. So blessed :) I bet you would do a great Vlog!!

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  15. Cutbacks are things I have to force myself to do band never want to do them, but so necessary in the grand scheme. I am totally drooling over those shots! Amazing.

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    1. When you make it up to OR, make sure it's not on a cutback week, OK? I have some places to take you, Adrienne!

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  16. Cutback weeks -- I can talk about those in depth. I am on the world's longest cutback week. this is week 60 and counting. hahaha

    Hope all is well. I know that I have said it before, but it looks like an amazing place to run.

    Peace and Godspeed. C2Iowa

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    1. So good to hear from you, C2! I know your cutback won't last forever. Hope you can get out for some amazing Iowa fall running soon.

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  17. So beautiful! I need to explore more and find some trails near me. I am a big fan of cut back weeks, at least during marathon training. I can tell my body needs them!

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    1. I hope you are able to find some good ones, Laura! They are great for the body and spirit. :)

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  18. Great pics! Oregon is gorgeous for running, as I've found out in visiting Portland and Eugene. Stanford vs Oregon is coming up in a couple weeks, at least the game is at Stanford this year! Oregon looks insane, Stanford will have to play their perfect game like last year in order to beat them. I think the odds of that happening are way lower than last year. I think Oregon is winning the national title this year. I decided to try to make it up for the Stanford-Oregon game every year in Oregon, so I'll hopefully be up in Eugene next year. Hopefully a race is going on then too lol.

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    1. Glad to hear you plan to return, Nelly! That same race has been on the 3rd weekend of November every year so far. :)

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  19. There are certainly some lovely trails in Oregon -- I enjoyed running some on my last visit there (I was always nervous about running into a bear or cougar though).

    Vlog - not that keen on them. A mate Scott uses them to blog all the time http://the-long.blogspot.com.au/ -- bit of a pain when my internet is crawling, which is more often than not. Cut back weeks - good idea if your mileage is high enough or life is stressful enough that you need them. For me that would be running over 60k a week. Destination runs - not lately. Last one was on the Uni track at Las Vegas (it was HOT, but I enjoyed it, running around with a couple of locals).

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    1. Thanks for the blog link! I will check that out Ewen :) I have issues with video too- Our internet is fast, but my PC is about to die any minute.
      You have had some international destination runs! Very jealous :)

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  20. Fantastic places, thanks for sharing the photos. Unfortunately cutbacks and rest are part of my recent life...... Never done a vlog and in this period my life is too hectic at work. Have a good sunday.

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    1. Hope your week is great Stefano! I'm still inspired that you continue to run despite the serious injuries you have sustained. You are dedicated!

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  21. Hi Raina! It looks like your parents are giving you a true gift by watching your youngest so you can go run. The landscape is beautiful! I've been trying to get up to a trail in nearby Boulder but since training for the marathon I couldn't fit it in...now that it's done hopefully I can get there.

    I'm not a vlogger...seeing myself and hearing my own voice is too weird!
    ;)

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    1. My parents are a HUGE blessing in that regard. They are so helpful when I get to town and have watched my boys almost every time I have raced.
      I know what you mean about trails and marathon training. I get focused on pace when I am training for a marathon and the trails can mess with your head that way :) Now is the perfect time for you! Hope you can get in some scenic CO runs for me :))

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  22. I am so sorry that you are forced to run in such ugly places! (lol!)
    How are your kids in school one day a week? Is this a homeschool co-op or public school? Just curious.
    I've considered doing a vlog, but then I fear my few readers would run away screaming (ha!) Why do we always sound so ridiculous to ourselves?

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    1. Haha! It's torture running here! :D
      My kids are in a public charter school, but the school is really designed for home schooling parents.
      I home school 80-90% of the lessons using their curriculum. I wrote a bit more in my comments above to LA runner, but it is a Classical Style approach to education with a strong focus on character . On the days we go, the kids turn in their work, take quizzes, arts and crafts, song-school memorization. They have regular classes with teachers where they get help if needed. We also have math tutoring as part of the package (required).
      There is state testing involved..and grades, though my kids are placed in classes based on ability, not on age. They run a very tight ship. I am still trying to tighten my end up! lol

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