UPCOMING EVENTS for 2015: (Under consideration) BigHorn 50K, Maine/New Hampshire Double,Franklin Mountain 50k, TURNING 50 (not in that exact order).

It's never too late to be what you might have been. --George Eliot

Athena is the Goddess of wisdom and war. In 2005, I declared war on my own bad tendencies: sloth, being fat, compacency, and being too old for adventure.
This is the story of how I went from being someone who never stood when she could sit, to being an ultrarunner, marathoner, triathlete, and *sigh* student.
"You're never too old to be what you might have been" --George Eliot

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Stuff old people do.

Dear Diary,

For my fiftieth birthday I did not run a 50K, like Perky plans to do later this year for her fiftieth. Remember, I. Am lazy. I had a spa day, and then the next day...I had another. I lounged in a hot tub in Albuquerque and read a few chapters in the book, "Positivity" by Barbara Frederickson. The next day, I lounged in a hottube in Santa Fe with my awesome buddies who took me up there for my birthday.

(I am running a 50K next weekend.)

Apparently, they watch matinees. On my birthday, which I share with my mother in law, we went to an afternoon matinee. I was the youngest one in the theater.

They get facials. And have aestheticians.

They go blond. Well, at least I did. Inexplicably, I decided last week I wanted to be a blonde again. So I am.

They join AARP. I'm doing it for the discounts. I'm like a discount ninja now with my AARP card, my AAA card, and military dependent card. HOOwahhh! Pick a card!!

They join the Y. Everyone seems pretty friendly. Everyone I saw at the Y, walking in and out of various classes, was around my age or slightly younger. Apparently, when you reach a certain age, you join the Y.

They shop at "senior super-stores" and buy assistive devices. There are entire industries aimed and helping people having to avoid moving too much.

You don't have to bend or move too much to dress, or wash yourself, with the right accoutrements.

Things to help you squeeze the toothpaste tube

Things to make it so you don't have to bend down to wash your scaley feet
Things to keep you from having to reach to wipe yourself
And help you stand up off the toilet.
This will help you get your socks on.
This will help you pull your zipper up.
There are things to help you open jars, turn knobs, pour tea, and carry your dishes.

I think I want to do that on my own for as long as possible. I'm a huge believer in "use it or lose it."

So Here's my assistive devices:


It's tempting. I need more sleep than I used to. But I am more vain than I am lazy, and I see the carnage all around me.

So, this fifty+ woman is going to go for a trail run, or to BootCamp. At the Y, of course.

Because that's what some old people do.



Friday, February 27, 2015

The Oldometer is rolling over.

Dear Diary,

It's 5 am and the wind is still. Fucking. Blowing.

I'm not talking about a breeze rustling through the trees. We live near a canyon and I'm talking about about the wind howling by the house, squeezing through crevices under the door. Rattling the roof vents. That wind. I hate it. HATE IT.

I will not run in high winds.

There's a scene in the old miniseries "Centennial," where a kid dies during the depression on the Great Plains; his model-T or whatever the fuck, rolls over, pinning him, and he's covered with dust blown by the wind, and suffocates. When his mother is told, she rocks back and forth with a crazy look in her eye muttering, "'twas the dust that kilt him...the dust, and the wind." Later a neighbor, trying to keep the wind and dust out of her house, goes apeshit crazy and kills eveyone in the house.

I'm not saying I'm going to go batshit and take everyone with me. I am just sayin': I can relate.




2015 has several important meanings for me.

First, it's the ten year anniversary of when I started this blog. I started this in January 2005 when I weighed 195 pounds. I've yo-yo'd my way back and forth between 150 and 170 since then, between a size 8 and 12, but I've never been back up to where I was at size 16.

Second, it's the year I turn 50.

FIFTY. Fifty has a lot of meaning for me. My mother was 53 when she was diagnosed with cardiomyoathy and given five years to live. She lasted eight, but she still died too young, after a lifetime of obesity.

Several older women I admire have listened to the news of my impending fiftieth, saying Quietly to me, "fifty was a hard one for me."

The interesting thing is that appoaching fifty was far more anxiety-inducing than actually being here. Once actually got here (in two weeks) I shrugged, and said, fuckit.

Upon approach to the big 5-0, I did spend far more time than was necessary trying to figure out which hair style or makeup or clothing would make me appear younger. I even read books on the subject.

Then one day it hit me: it's not the hair or the makeup, I'm really doing as well as I can. What is making me look older is....


...Wait for it...




...Wait for it...



Getting older. (What a concept)

In any case I have made some observations that may have something to do with what my great Aunt Lucille said to me when I was eight and asked her why she wasn't married. Aunt Lucille, a Lauren Bacallish woman who became a lawyer in the 1940s when women Simply Were Not Lawyers, looked and me. Well, the truth is that the older I get the less shit I'm willing to put up with.

So here they are, in no particular order.

First, I have never had a diamond ring, so, for my impending fiftieth, I bought myself a present.


<-- Second, I don't care if it makes me look slightly younger, I'm tired of fucking with all that hair. Goodbye, ponytail.


Third, running on roads makes my hip hurt (apparently, a greater trunchsomething bursitis), so I'm going to be nearly all trails as a runner from now on.

Forth, I love bootcamp-style workouts. I feel younger, stronger, and lithe. I'm joining the Y and signing up there, because it gives me more time flexibility, and a shower. i'd been doing them in a private gym, but it's really cutting into my budget and I had less control over when I could work out. Also, I like the Y. Because shower.

Fifth, where the fuck is my AARP card, anyway? I want those damned discounts.

Sixth, heLLO, senior Olympics, here I come.

Seventh, and I'm polling all the other old cool people out there, is this where I get to start saying whatever crazy shit is on my mind? And then people chuckle and say, OH, old lady Misty is such a hoot! Let me know I'm wrong.

Eighth, I fucking hate Blogsy. But it's all there is. Dammit. Dammit, dammit, dammit.

Ninth, I find myself gravitating towards facials and massages more. Is that normal?

Tenth, I still have no desire to talk to, hold, talk about, show pictures of, shop for, or babysit grandchildren. I don't have any yet, so it's just as well. Oh, sure, maybe I'll change my mind when one of my kids plops a wiggling bundle of joy in my arms. Or maybe not. I work with mentally ill children all day, so it may surprise many to know that I'm not really all that into kids on the weekends.

Last, as the baby of the family,I can remember thinking, now that I,m thirty, I'm seriously a grownup. You have to take me seriously now!. They didn't. I thought the same thing when I turned forty. They didn't. Now I'm fifty, and there's nobody left to say that to.

So, let me know if any of these things are weird. And let me know what else weird might happen.



Monday, December 15, 2014

Even the holidays won't make me conform.

Our back yard this past weekend.

Dear Diary,

I love the holidays. There are many reasons why.

Medals from the current year are always tree ornaments on our 4-foot tree.

First, it's about the time that we in Albuquerque get out first snow.

Second, since it's finally cold enough to do that, Himself starts digging into the wood pile and building cozy fires.

Another reason I love the holidays. Take a look at my kitchen below: see anything missing?

I have no oven. Nope. None. Well, if you look really closely you'll see a small toaster oven that Sweet Baboo bought me way back when the oven first quit. I refuse on principle to spend that much on a single appliance that I use, at most, three times per year. Not because I'm cheap; I have an induction cooktop and I love to cook. But I don't even bake.

And probably won,t ever. Without an oven, there is no expectation that I'll pull off something spectacular.

For a while, I stored oven pans in the non-working oven. Eventually, I had a handyman remove it, and Sweet Baboo put a shelf in the empty space for the toaster oven.

The rest of the space contains the following oft-used appliances: rice cooker, bread maker, Indoor griddle, and an electric pressure cooker.

I'm considering upgrading to a larger toaster oven with a built in rotiserie, extra fancy, and still about 1/10th price of an oven.

Two years ago, when Himself was gone for Thanksgiving doing Army things, I baked three cornish hens in it for me and the boys.

Oh, I think about how nice it would be bake every once in a while. Then I go to the bakery department at the local grocery and get over myself. I have made some quite nice pies and cakes, one at a time, in the toaster oven, along with the occasional casserole, some hot wings, and other things. From time to time I roast a whole chicken in the toaster oven, using a cast iron dutch oven.

Over all, though, it's just as well. I don't need something that holds cookie sheets. I don't need the ability to make cookies easily and quickly at home.

Just think of the freedom! I am automatically exempt from:

  • Hosting holiday dinners
  • Baking pies, cookies, or cakes for special occasions.
  • Making large roasts for ANY occasion
Buttery pecan tarts. Heatable in the microwave.

I am my mother's daughter. My mom announced abruptly in 1984 that we would not longer eat holiday dinners at my parents' home. Instead, she said, we would eat at the country club.

Between sobs, I insisted that she was ruining the holidays. RUINING THEM. No, she assured me, cooking ruins the holidays. I realized she was right when I beheld the country club holiday buffet, which included three kinds of shellfish and four kinds of roasted meat, among other delights. My mom was a good cook, but this kicked ass. I never complained again.

Even better, marrying Himself caused me to inherit a mother-in-law who loves to bake. Win-win.

I will not be pressured into buying expensive things because everyone is supposed to have them. And honestly, I don't know what's for sale these days because I listen to Pandora, itunes radio, and I don't get cable.

Some other time I'll write about why I don't have a couch.




Saturday, December 06, 2014

Now what?

Dear Diary,

Only lost two toenails this year!

In my movement toward going back to school to get my PhD, I made the first cut of the applicants. I have an interview with the faculty about getting into the program.

Anyway. The year, in brief: 9 marathons, in 9 different states: Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Louisianna, Kansas, Missouri, Rhode Island, Washington. Yes, Washington, finally, on the third try. The last two marathons of the year, Kansas and Washington, were both in freezing weather. Brr. I've managed to pull my marathon time back down to less than 5.5 hours, from 6:15 at the beginning of the season. I also completed 3 half marathons, 2 10ks, an Olympic triathlon, an ironman swim, and a smattering of 5ks. Oh, and six of those marathons were within the same eight week period that ended November 30.

I'm not sure where to go with this blog. I'm going to be very busy soon with doctoral work and various projects I'm working on for work.

Moreover, I'm no longer an Athena. It's funny, because I really had embraced this identity. Be the Athena. I had staunchly avoided companies that didn't carry larger sized fitness clothing. I automatically ordered everything in an XL, L, if I wanted a snug fit. And I never wanted a snug fit. Ew. Whenever I looked in the mirror, everything seemed large and pendulous.

Lately, however, friends and loved ones had been telling me, without being asked, you are not fat. You're not even really very big any more. Of course, anyone with body issues will tell you that those statements go in one ear and out the other. They're just being nice.

After a therapist I know commented, the only thing big about you is your height, I decided to look up some stats. Her comment was not a big surprise, because I hear that often, but it's always a curiosity. Depending on who measures me I'm either 5'5.5" or 5'6". I thought that was average.

So last weekend, the night before the Seattle Marathon, i googled average woman height US and clicked on a link to the US CDC website, and learned something pretty surprising:

  • Even when broken down by age group or ethnicity, I'm nearly 2 inches taller than the average woman.
  • On average, I'm about 10 lbs lighter.
  • My waist is about 5 inches smaller.

More searching turned up the fact that the average dress size in the US is a 14. I wear a 10 now. In fact, I bought a lulumon pace setter running skirt, size 10, and DreadPirate warned me that they run a little small. It's fits. Last week, when himself and I were looking at rings, I found out that I wear a ring size 4.5 or 5, apparently also smaller than average. Several of the rings I looked at didn't come that small.

You have to understand, that this was really pretty stunning news for me. I honestly still thought of myself as a large, full-figured gal. I worked vary hard to accept that about myself. I worked very hard to love every roll and curve (unsuccessfully, I might add) and accept that I'm just like everyone else. I'm not. I've managed to work my way toward the tail end of the bell curve. Every close female family member I'm aware of is (or was) morbidly obese, and here I am, on the other side of the curve.

Of course, I shared this with others, along with how amazed I was. I really, really did think that I was utterly huge! Everyone was pretty much like, yawn, yeah, so? So you're not that big. So? Sweet Baboo said, Now do you believe me?

And I did. And I do. So, who am I? If I'm not an Athena, then whose diary is this now?


Monday, October 27, 2014

That's what she said.

Dear Diary,

I have pictures. Lots of them, but since the big apple update Blogsy has been a struggle. So, I've put off posting anything since I can't upload pictures. Guess I'll do a lo-fi version.

For the past couple of years I've been struggling with the persistent feeling that time was running out. I have clinical depression, and I've spent the past six months fighting it with more running and setting more goals for myself. For the past two months, in particular, I've really been enjoying NOT BEING DEPRESSED. Feeling like I have all the time in the world, so, what shall I do with my shiny new life?

Every morning when I run, I come up with things and think, oo, I should write about that! Then after I've finished it's gone....all gone. Except for one: Yesterday I reached the collision of my worlds when I was nearly at the end of my run and realized that the glasses I thought I'd forgotten were on my head. This is the only thing that I've been able to remember--just this, that I was doing my weekly 2-mike run for time, with my glasses on my head, wishing I could see.

My weight has held steady at about a 17-lb loss. Last week I ordered some pants of a certain size. The smart, logical part of my brain said, you are swimming in those 12s. But the fat woman inside of me--yes, it's true, there's a fat woman inside of me struggling to get out; it is she who tells the man behind the counter that we would like an 8 piece fried, thank you. It is she who passes by mirrors, afraid to look. It is she who said, those 10s will never fit, you fat fuck. They won't even get up your hips. You wasted your money. And that medium? Forget it. You are, and always will be, an XL, or when you're really dehydrated, an L.

That's what she said.

But she was wrong. They did fit. Along with other things that have happened I have decided to pretend that the year on my birth certificate is, after all, an error. I am not 49. Why, yesterday, I ran a 10k that was my second fastest time ever! I am not really 49.

This is what 49 means to me: Fat. Tired. Pantsuits. Breathlessness. Giving up. Wishing I'd gotten that degree. That was the model that was set before me.

Last week, I was doing 20" box jumps, which were alternated with front squats while holding a 95-lb weight. That was three days after running a local half marathon.

The week before i did the box jumps, I walked in and took the Graduate Record Exam without preparing for it, and I didn't suck. That was three days after I did back-to-back marathons in Rhode Islands and Connecticut.

And the week before that, I asked three people I knew professionally if they would write letters of recommendation for me, ordered transcripts, and completed my online application for a PhD program.

I am not 49.

You are too old to do this. Too old to start something new. You'll be a member of AARP before you get your degree. That's what she said.

As for the example I'm setting, well, my 30-year-old son told me, somewhat wearily, you've set the bar pretty high, mom. Well, of course I told him, live your life, don't live mine. But inside, I was happy that he saw a different vision of 49 than I did.

I don't know if I'll get accepted into graduate school. After all, I didn't study for the GRE and I don't know if my scores are good enough. I don't know a lot of things. But I do know this: i am not 49.





Sunday, August 17, 2014

Sunday thirteen.

Dear Diary,

13. Cheat. Last week Korbie flipped through my diet log, reading each page. He stopped at one.

I'm pretty sure "1 cup of fried potatoes" wasn't on the meal plan.

I will create myself.

He continued reading. Cake? What's up with all the cake?

What's up with the cake? I'll tell you: An insurance company denies services for a kid, and to get back at them, I have chocolate cake. That'll show 'em! Makes perfect sense.


Anyway, I changed my flavor of morning and afternoon Protizyme to 'Chocolate Cake' so that maybe it would help me avoid the trays of donuts and sheetcake.

12. Experimenting. Now that the first month is past, he's tweaked my diet to see what I burn more efficiently, carbs or protein. Every other day, now, I do two things: 1) add 10 minutes to my daily 30 of cardio, and, 2) on the same day, cut my afternoon carbs in half and my evening carbs completely (I still eat a huge cup of cooked oatmal every morning, and 3) on the day if my "cheat meal" that's the day I don't exercise. For now, Sweet Baboo and I decided this day would be Monday. If my weight loss slows down, we'll know that maybe I do better with more carbs. If it speeds up, we know otherwise.

11. Success. In any case I did lose weight this past couple weeks, which is A-MAY-ZING because, after all, we were in Boulder and I did not eat as healthily as I should have. I ate better than usual, however, and at the end of week five with Korbie I've lost 11 pounds.

10. Changes. I was feeling a little tired of my straight hair doing nothing sitting next to my face, so I went on Angie's list and found a salon 5 minutes from work. Maybe I love my hair now. Or maybe I think it makes me look like my mom. It does have a highly redeeming quality: after my morning run and shower, I blow dry it without touching it. That's right--i just move the dryer back and forth across the back of my head, and it dries, just like this.

The big giant glasses were just for fun.

9. Over it. FINISHERPIX, who I imagine has edged out D.N.F.PIX, was kind enough to send me a link to my FINISHER pics! That was pretty amazing, considering that the last pictures on there were of me on my bike, and I did not finish.

Anyway, after I was pulled from the course, I enjoyed watching people finish. I truly did. And I felt...nothing. No wistfulness, no pangs of regret, no wishing I was running down that chute. Just nothing. I think I'm over Ironman.

8. Training. I'm now training for the two marathon doubles I have coming up, one each in October and November.

Running this week was tough. There was a stiff (> 20 mph) canyon wind that blew straight into my face or across me. It never seemed to be at my back. I was winded and slow and heavy. But I did it. Every day. On Thursday, I was rewarded with a beautiful still morning and a run somewhat faster than what I'd done so far.

7. Apps. I am using RunKeeper and I love it. It talks to me over the music on my phone, which is always in the back pocket of my RaceReady shorts. Hands and wrists free, I run to music, and every five minutes it gives me elapsed time, pace, distance. It also loads the calories burned automatically into my LoseIt! App.

6. Angry eating, part II. I had two episodes of self-assertiveness that I think may be the first step in overcoming my angry eating impulses. First, i have always been intimidated by insurance companies. But this week, I stood up to them. And they backed down. Second, when talking to a case worker who had steadfastedly refused to take any responsibility for a kid who is a ward of the state, I told him, get in your car and come pick him up. He tried for two days to get out of it, suggesting I put a mentally ill juvenile on light rail and a bus, until I finally said, we don't put children on buses, or trains, or in cabs. He's your responsiblity, and you are his parent. Come pick him up and take him to his placement. Now. And he did.

Those felt amazing. I don't always have to let people have their way to be nice. I can be firm, polite, and still get my way. Kewl! And then I didn't feel like I needed a piece of cake to prove I was in charge.

5. Ouch. Sweet Baboo broke his big toe. The ER doc said it's broken all the way into the joint and he needs to be off it completely, on crutches, for twelve weeks. The podiatrist says it's not broken into the joint, and hey, just do whatever doesn't hurt too much, and it will probably be healed in eight weeks. The podiatrist is a runner, i should mention. It's like a cult.

4. Mentoring. A former coworker, very young, just did her first few 5ks. She loved them. And then yesterday she emailed me and said she was bored with 5k, thinking of doing a triathlon, do I have any advice?

So, I like, uh, sent her links. Lots of links. Turns out, she LOVES open water swimming. You'll do well, grasshopper!

3. Training plan. I have a new run training plan under development. It includes a couple of marathons, but mostly local 10K and half marathons. I find that I work harder in the local races than just a long run.

2. Strength. I'll be working on power, speed and strength this fall on Wednesday and Thursday nights at the No Limits Fitness Company, a small, private, woman-owned gym in Albuquerque. I started working with her back in April, and I've enjoyed it quite a bit. She's going to be helping me get ready for the Senior Games in 2015. So far, "getting ready" seems to involve a lot of DOMS. DreadPirate uses her too, and we refer to the exhaustion as having been Kathleened.

1. Weight. I'm down to about 163. It's the first time I've seen this number since 2012, i think. When I started my job at the hospital in 2012 I was at about 150 or maybe 155. I then out on about 20 lbs, partially because I started sitting all day, partially because I stopped training regularly during 2013, and partially becuse I got into the whole, "fuck this, I'll eat whatever I want" Mode. I'm working my way back. Not because it's a number. Because I'm happier when I take up just a little less space, and when there's less of my to hault up and down the hills.



Sunday, August 03, 2014

It's all about the bike.

Dear Diary,

After about fortyish miles of Colorado countryside at an 11 miles per hour pace, I found myself nauseated in the heat and staring at another big-assed hill. It was 12:39. I had 51 minutes to get 17 miles, which was highly unlikely. The guy that pulled my chip apologized, but it was inevitable. They pulled my chip and those of the four people ahead of me. One of them, like me, was happy to take the ride. Another one had been in a bike accident with another rider, one sat silently trying not to cry at having failed her first attempt at an Ironman, and the fourth stewed silently, angry that they had pulled her chip,after she failed to make the cutoff by more than 10 minutes.

I asked the girl next to me, who is very young, if she would try again. She nodded. "Good for you," I said.

It was a new experience for me, being pulled. I've never been pulled. I've always just squeaked by with those cutoffs, but let's face it, it's an Ironman. It's all about the bike. Considering I haven't really trained for it, I'm surprised I got as far as I did. The ride back, in the shuttle, was a tense silence. The driver kept apologizing. I felt bad for him. I've been in races where you didn't get a ride back, or worse, you sat in the back of a pickup for the ride back. I thanked him for providing this service.

Now, the only way to get to where my bags were was to walk the same walk as the triathletes who had just gotten off their bikes. Hoards of people shouted at me as I walked by. WHOO! Good job number 1180!

That was a long walk. Yep. Awkward.

I loaded up bags and bikes and went to wait for Baboo to finish. I got a little lightheaded doing that.

During the ride back, and while I waited, I had pondered this experience, this 'being pulled'. I came up with some great truths.

1) this is a natural consequence and a lesson I needed. I didn't train. This is what happens when you don't train. You suffer, or you don't finish, or both. It's a miracle that I finished the swim.

2) Being pulled is not the end of the world. I've been anxious about it before, but it's not that bad.

3) I've said it before, when you try extraordinary things, things outside your comfort zone, sometimes you will fail.

4) Having said that, I have completed two iron distance triathlons. Hard ones. I'm good.

Oh, and one more thing:

5) I really, really, really really hate cycling.

I accept that we have roles to play. Mine is not necessarily to always win but to try. If someone tries something extraordinary, something outside of their comfort zone, because I did it, then that's a good thing.
















Friday, August 01, 2014


Dear Diary,

This morning Sweet Baboo and I had a short run and then headed for Ironman Village to pick up our race pack. We are expecting perfect racing conditions on Sunday but it rained all yesterday afternoon, night, and into this morning, so the grassy field next to Boulder High school was a wet, sloppy mess.

For this race they gave us a backpack and a small bike multitool kit. And there were a few changes since the last time I did this one...no number on the bike, just our body markings and the stickers all over the bike. The race number with my name on it will be worn during the run. There are TWO bike claim stickers, so Baboo and I can each have one.

I'm busy packing my bags. Korbie has directed me to eat solid food throughout the race. Not a lot, just enough to keep something in my system. I've done this during ultras but not during an iron distance race. It will be interesting. I think it might help.

I'll be wearing my bike shorts and tri top Under my sleeveless wetsuit. I have corrective goggles, and anti fog stuff for them. I am to eat one of my protein bars about an hour before i swim. It may be as cold as 50 degrees (air temp) at the start

Bike bag: my pointy alien head race helmet, mountain bike shoes, regular cycling socks, Sportslick, and a ziplock bag containing my noon thyroid medication, four protein bars (one i am to eat IMMEDIATELY) and a couple of gels.

Bike special needs bag: i'm not preparing one. I'm too paranoid of not making the cutoffs, I will ride as continuously as i can. A small red bull will be de-gassed Saturday and go into a small bottle on my bike. I have to reach mile 56 by 1:30 and 86 at 3:30 and be off the bike by 5:30 pm. This is a source of great anxiety for me since I'm such a crappy cyclist, and because: hills. I will not be carrying a hydro pack. It's too unweildy and adds weight. I am worried about the possibility of an afternoon thunderstorm. I'm supposed to have a protein bar every 2-3 hours.

Run bag: underarmour mesh running shirt, raceready shorts, injinjis, and Newtons. Another packet of bars and gels and another degassed red bull. I'll be switching from corrective bike goggles to lightweight transition lens glasses and a hat. I have to be at mile 12.9 of the run by 8:50, turnaround at mike 16.5 at 9:40 pm. The third run cutoff is Boulder high school at 22.7 at 11:15 pm. Unless I'm injured or throwing up, i'm not worried about the run cutoffs. Protein bars every 2-3 hours. Headlamp, because, lets face it. I am not a pre-sundown kind of girl.

Tomorrow, I'll take Danger Kitty to the t1 area.

After that, it's over but the sweating, crying, and swearing.



Sunday, July 27, 2014

On progress, and finding my way.

Dear Diary,

I've done a lot of ultra endurance stuff since my first full year of multisport in 2005-2006. I enjoy knowing I had done them, but often I did not enjoy doing them. Most things I did because I love spending time with SB, and so do things to be with him. I haven't focused on any one thing to do because I like it and I'm good at it.

I joke about my lax training, but there have been ultra events that I trained well for in order to struggle to the middle of the pack. How do you know you're not cut out for ultras, say the folks who are several inches shorter and forty pounds lighter. How do I know? Physics. Oh, also the fact that I don't like them, don't look forward to them, and have started to hate the shit out of them. Increasingly, my goal in completing one was simply not to cry. I love crewing them; i love the ultra community. But when I ran ultras, If I was happy afterwards, it was because it was over. Thank fucking God. Now go get me a pizza so I can gain 10 lbs despite a 5000 calorie deficit.

All athletes.

Increasingly, I've tried to distill what it means for me to be an athlete, and become resentful of continuously doing what I'm not good at and don't enjoy. There comes a time in any relationship when you find yourself frowning and dreading the prospect of that next meeting, and that's when you realize that the relationship has run its course.

I feel energized by my 3-5 mile runs on trails in the foothills in the mornings before work - I come down all flushed and sweaty and happy. I like short, (occasional--marathon.

As for what I'm good at, well, I stay leaner when I'm not continually doing long distance training. I've had two different fitness coaches tell me that I would be good at weight-lifting. I know that when I start working out my heart rate takes about 400-800 meters to really jump up there, which suggests short bursts of speed. I'm medium-sized, with a medium build, and I tend to put on muscle easily. In short, i don't think I'm physiologically built for ultras. But more importantly, I don't like them. So...

For now, I might still do the occasional 50K here and there, if it's in a pretty place on a beautiful trail, like the Pacific Northwest, but fuck all those high-altitude mountain runs where my fingers turn grey and I worry about cutoffs and wish I had more oxygen. I've decided that I want to feel good about myself and have fun with what I do, even if It means seeing less of my tiny, lightweight ultra-running family.