Congrats on yet another collective trip around the sun! The ride might feel long, it might also seem like it’s flying by at times, but at least we get to share the experience with some awesome (and maybe some not so awesome) people. At the very least it’s an interesting ride!
Seriously though, does anyone else feel like this year gone by really fast while simultaneously dragging on an on and on?!? Hahaha I don’t know, I guess it’s just been a weird year. Weird, but also good. 😁
So I just wanted to look back month-by-month at all (or at least most 😉) of my personal highlights from 2018. Last year I actual broke this idea up into two different posts, one for running and one for life in general. But for this year I’m just gonna stick with one post. I did have a lot of fun running-wise in 2018, but at the same time nothing really spectacular happened for me. I only accomplished one PR and that was for the longest run I’ve ever done. No shiny new time PR’s for me… So that’s kind of a bummer, but hey, now I’ve got a whole new year ahead of me to start working towards some other shiny new PR’s!!
Anyway, let’s get to it! Here are my month-by-month, personal highlights from 2018! 🥳
Alrighty! 2018 kicked off with me putting one of my Christmas gifts from 2017 to good use!! My sisters bought me Run Fast Eat Slow by Shalane Flanagan and Elyse Kopecky. What an amazing gift and an awesome cookbook! I must admit, while I do believe in eating clean, whole, nutritious foods, I can find some of it a little boring… But cooking with this cookbook taught me that healthy, nutritious food doesn’t have to be boring.
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Around the end of December or early January, Kay Von D and Billie Joe Armstrong collaborated on a new eyeliner. Not gonna lie, I know nothing about makeup and have been doing my eyeliner in basically the same way since I was 16. But when an amazing artist and the guy who pretty much made guyliner (who also happens to be one of your own personal heroes) makes an eyeliner you buy it! And buy it I did! Hahaha and I’ve still got quite a bit of it left since I don’t often wear makeup.
I think this photo came from Kat Von D’s instagram? Honestly I don’t remember, it’s been saved on my phone for a while haha.
Oh and I started dyeing my blonde streak purple in January. I’m not sure why I had never done that before, but I had always wanted to. So that was pretty cool.
PS, guess what eyeliner I’m wearing in this photo. 😉😉😉
I’m not sure if this really counts as a highlight, but looking back on it it makes me laugh really hard (I also kinda forgot that this happened this year 😂). But I’m February I slipped in my living room (on nothing I might add), fell, and slammed my toe into the leg of our couch. I never did get it looked at by a doctor but I’m pretty sure I broke it. It’s fully healed now though, so that’s good.
In a weird twist of fate, my toe breaking escapade happened right before I got two root canals done. So I had some pretty sweet pain meds for both of those situations. 😂 Seriously though, my teeth are REALLY bad and I began my journey to a healthier mouth in February. But I also ran out of insurance money, so it began and ended with those two root canals. But now that the new year is upon us I have insurance money again and can FINALLY get some more much needed work done on my teeth.
And last but certainly not least for February, I ended up going to Colorado with my dad and spending about a week there with him and my brother. I’m not gonna get into all of the details of our adventures while I was there, because I already have. 😉 But we had a lot of fun together. Hahaha even on the 16 hour drive from Kansas to Colorado! Hahaha that drive is only supposed to take 11 hours, but my dad and I like to stop and do stuff!! Oh and I think my brother and I accidentally ended up in Nebraska in our way to Kansas. Oh man, those were some good times. 😂
While I was in Colorado at the end of February Luke ended up buying a chicken coop and when I got back home we bought our first set of chicks of the year! Oh man I forgot how cute they were!! Unfortunately this was the set of chickens that my neighbor’s dog ended up killing because he kept getting into our yard. Luckily that finally got resolved, but I still wasn’t happy about losing all of our chickens…
Processed with Rookie Cam
Processed with Rookie Cam
Another adventure that was planned while I was in Colorado was running the Martin City Whiskey 5k with my dad! This was the first race we did together and it was so much fun!! Hahaha even though my dad ended up getting a little hurt at the end. But he eventually healed and I remember mentioning to him that now he needs to do a half marathon! I’m not sure how serious either of us were at that point though. But I was pretty stoked about my shot of Whiskey and super awesome post race breakfast and that was making me really look forward to some half marathoning!
Easter fell on April fools day this year, so on the first day of April Luke and were in Illinois celebrating Easter with our families. My grandma made a whole big lunch and lots of homemade desserts which is always fantastic! While we were there Luke, my brother who was also in Illinois for Easter, and I did some target shooting at our old house. We had to trespass a little bit on what used to be my grandma’s farm, but whatever. 😉 I though I might be a little bit rusty because I don’t really get to shoot anymore, but I did alright. 🙂 While we were there we ended up taking my brother and two of Luke’s brothers to the Saint Louis City Museum. We all had lots of fun there!
Later in the month Luke traded in our old Chevy Equinox and got a 2016 Dodge Ram. I feel like that was probably one of the best decisions that was made all year! Hahaha we’ve sure put the truck to good use since we’ve had it!!
On the second Saturday of May I did the Running With The Cows 5k for the second time! Eventually I need to do the half at this event, but I’m so glad I didn’t this year! It was super hot and muggy that day. Still a lot of fun though! I got to pet a baby cow, run a very pretty 5k on a super rural road that runs through a bunch of cow pastures, and then pick out food at the HUGE buffet they have for all of the runners. Seriously, they have some pretty awesome stuff there! I’ve been very happy both times I’ve left this race. If you’re ever looking to do a half or 5k in early May and happen to be in Kansas I definitely recommend checking this one out!
May was when we got our garden planted, built the chickens a bigger run, and just did a bunch of work outdoors. It’s not exactly glamours, but I sure do enjoy it. 😁
For Memorial Day Luke and I threw a bit of a party for some family and neighbors. The guys had a bit of a rib cook off, and I baked a couple of pies and made a bunch of sides. The neighbor kid that I babysit came over to play with my brother-in-law’s girlfriend’s kids, and we had 5 dogs running around because my brother-in-law brought his with him. Oh and us and the neighbors were just constantly climbing over the fence into each other’s yards for various reasons. Haha it was a little bit chaotic, but lots of fun!
On June first we got our second batch of chicks. Not exactly a highlight because we only had to get them because our neighbor’s dog killed the first set. But still kind of a highlight because LOOK HOW CUTE!!!!
Later in June we ended up in Illinois again. We did a bit more target practice at my parents old house while we were there, but the real high point of this particular trip was taking Luke’s youngest brother to Troy Park and playing on the playground and Pokémon Go-ing. Oh and we also picked up my sister’s old treadmill from her boyfriend’s mom’s house that night. Hahaha she literally gave me her treadmill because we have a truck and could actually haul it back home. Told you we’ve been putting that thing to good use!
Ok, just a little side note. Through the spring I’d been talking to my dad about doing a half marathon with me. I had been looking into the Gobbler Grind and told my dad that I was only going to do it if he’d do it with me because this race was the day after the Longview half which I was already registered for. So at some point he signed us both up and thus Operation Two Half Marathons In Two Days was born!
July is Luke’s birthday month! Yay!! So on his birthday his brother, his girlfriend, her kids, and our next door neighbor kid all came over for Luke’s birthday and we threw him a little party. There was a cake and confetti and glow sticks and lots of dogs! What more do you need for a birthday party?!? 😂
For the past several years Luke’s mom has planned/organized a big family vacation for a bunch of people on that whole side of the family. This year that included 25 people!! Hahaha it was easy for so many people to come this year because we went to Branson. MO and since most of us live in the Midwest that’s not too crazy out of the way. I think EVERYONE drove there. 🙂 Anyway, we stayed in these cabins right next to a river so we spent a lot of our time there having a little too much fun out in the water. We did a lot of fishing, swimming, and those of us who were of age did a little a lot of drinking haha. 😉 It was an absolute blast though. I think hanging out on the river was the most fun part, but we did do a few other things. We went to a slightly depressing animal “safari” thing. We also had a big birthday party for several people at the equivalent of a Chucky Cheese, and we went to the outlet stores several times.
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Processed with Rookie Cam
On one of the days we were there (I think it was the second to last) we had a big cookout thing. Everyone cooked a bunch of food, but in the middle of it all a HUGE thunderstorm rolled in. So everyone rushed around to get their food done and into the different cabins, get all of the small children inside, and everything picked up and what not. Then, like the good Midwesterners that we are, we sat out on the cabin porches and watched it come! At one point somebody dared someone to stand out in the rain for the entire storm and eventually all of the “kids” (Me, Luke, his brother’s and sister. His step sisters, our nephew, and a couple of their friends) ended up standing in the pouring rain. It was hilarious! Although the next day we found out that was when the Ride The Duck thing got caught in the storm and a bunch of people die. It wasn’t so funny after we found that out.
Aaaaaaaand training for Operation Two Half Marathons In Two Days started near the end of July! If you’ve been following me for any amount of time you probably know that I do not do well in the heat and that I’m not a fan of summer running. But starting a new training plan for a big goal is always exciting!
This sunrise on August 4th reminded me that even though summer running is rough and that I absolutely hate waking up at 5 am, views like this make it totally worth it.
I guess August was a relatively uneventful month, as I have very few photos from then. 😂 But we did go to a casino for like the second time. Not exactly my thing, but it was still a good time.
So, every year since we’ve been married, Luke takes me to a pumpkin farm to pick pumpkins, apples, and to get other fun fall things. We ended up going super early this year (on September 14th to be exact 😉) because this summer was hot, dry, and brutal and I was very much over it. So the day the pumpkin farm opened its pumpkin patch we went and started all of our fun fall festivities early! 🎃😊
Later into September Luke’s mom added to my fall fun by sending me a big care package full of sweet Halloween stuff! She’s very much into Halloween as well, so she gets it. 😉 I started putting some of it up that day! Luke wouldn’t let me start decorating outside until October though. 😂
Yay October!! The brutal summer finally ended and it actually cooled down this year! It’s been FOREVER since we’ve actually had a chilly fall. That made me super duper happy!! So did all of the amazing fall foliage we had in the area this year! It’s been a long while since the trees have looked this pretty!
On October 5th we added a new member to our family!! On his way home from work that day Luke told me to be ready to leave when he got home because we were going on an adventure! That adventure turned out to be picking out a new puppy to be Finn’s future girlfriend! I made the right choice picking her out of the litter. Finn immediately fell in love with her.
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The very next day I PR’d my longest distance run by doing a 14 mile long run! Haha I had to stop at home several times so I could let the new puppy out of her crate to pee and that did get a little bit annoying. But all in all this was a great run! I watched my watch while I hit and then went over the half marathon mark, because that was the first time I’ve ever done that in training and it was just so super cool!
On October 11th we went to Illinois yet again. This time for my mom’s birthday, one of Luke’s brother’s birthday, and his grandma’s and great aunt’s birthdays (they’re twins!!). Hahaha so we were kinda busy that time around! We only brought Whiskey with us for this trip just so she could get used to riding in the car, being by herself, and whatnot. But we ended up taking Luke’s youngest brother to Troy park again, this time with Whiskey, and apparently we went on the perfect day because there was some kinda of pet event going on! So there were all sorts of venders, rescues, and just people out there with a bunch of dogs! So Whiskey (and Luke’s brother, actually 😂) got lots of positive socialization. We even met another red border collie while we were there! That was so cool!! Hahaha the other girl and I saw each others dogs, make eye contact and then booked it to each other so we could talked. 😂 Oh man that was a great day!!
Oh and watching my grandma meet Whiskey for the first time was really cute too!! She used to breed German Shepherds, ran a dog boarding kennel, and was always super involved in the dog works (that’s where I get it all from!) so she LOVES meeting puppies. But I mean, who doesn’t?!
November got off to a really great start, with Whiskey and I watching the NYC marathon! Haha Luke signed up for another free trial of Hulu TV just so I could watch it (he did that for me in April so I could watch Boston as well ;). If you watched you know how amazing it was! If you didn’t, well, you really missed out!
November also brought the conclusion of Operation Two Half Marathons In Two Days, and oh boy it didn’t end in any kind of way that I thought it would. I DNF’d the first half! ☹️ So that was really more of a low point of 2018. But the very next day I ran the Gobbler Grid half with my dad! It was the slowest half I’ve ever done, but it was also the most fun! Hahaha I’m so glad we ran that 5k together in the spring! If we hadn’t then this half might not have happened! Honestly I think this half marathon and the couple of days that I got to spend with my dad because of it was my favorite thing to happen this year.
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The November fun didn’t end with that half marathon though! I ended up running a 5k on Thanksgiving morning! That was technically my first ever turkey trot and it was a blast!!! Plus they handed out pumpkin pies to all of the finishers instead of medals. That was awesome!! 🦃🏃🏻♀️🥧
And even after that there was still some more November running fun to be had! Haha we had a legit blizzard on November and guess who decided to run in it? That’s right, this girl!! Oh my gosh that was so ridiculous dangerous because we were experiencing high winds and white out conditions, but it was oh so much fun!!
Oh boy! November sure was busy, but believe it or not, December was even more hectic! We did lots and lots of fun Christmas stuff though!
On the 15th Luke took me (and Dean 😉) to two different Christmas light displays! First we went to one that was more of a light show that synced up to music. Those are always cool.
We didn’t stay there long though. Our next destination was a park that covers almost every tree around this lake in lights! It’s so beautiful! So we walked around there for a while and took a bunch of pictures! Haha Luke’s not big on the cold, Christmas, or picture taking, so I really appriciated doing all of that all at once. That being said, we had a really good night. 🙂
The next day Luke and I ended up exchanging Christmas gifts because we’re both terrible at waiting to give gifts. 😂 Apparently we both had similar ideas this year, because he got me a “fuck” coffee mug and I got him a monogrammed glass for adult beverages. 😉 Hahaha we know each other well.
On the 22nd we got our first eggs!!!!! You guys have no idea how excited I was! I’ve been waiting for this for such a long time!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 Ever since then we’ve been getting at least 2, sometimes 3 eggs a day from our hens. By this spring/summer we should be getting around 5-7 eggs a day! How freaking sweet is that?!?
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We spent pretty much the rest of our December running around and getting stuff ready for Christmas. At 3 am on Christmas Eve we left Kansas and drove to Illinois so we could spend Christmas with some family. On Christmas Eve we started out at Luke’s dad’s, then we went to his grandma’s for a little bit. Then my grandma had a little party at her house of Christmas Eve, so we hung out there with her, my mom, and my uncle for a while.
Christmas Day was just as busy! Luke and I stayed at his dad’s house Christmas Eve night so we could open presents from them and Santa. After we did that Luke’s dad made us a late breakfast and we hung out there until noon when we went to Luke’s other grandma’s Christmas party. That’s always a big even! That side of the family takes Christmas VERY seriously and this year was no different. We had lots of food, presents, and fun. 🙂 That night me, Luke, and one of his brother’s stayed up playing this game on the Playstation. It got out of hand very quickly but it was a lot of fun haha.
It was a busy Christmas, but a good one.
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Processed with Rookie Cam
At some point during our stay in Illinois Luke’s dad convinced him to come back for New Year’s Eve, because he was actually going to be off from work for that. So we drove back to Illinois last night at we’re at Luke’s dad’s right now. So we’ll be ringing in the New Year with Luke’s dad, step mom, and 2 of his brothers!
Oh man this post ended up being really long! Maybe I should have broken it up into two different posts. 😉 Oh well.
Thanks to everyone who hung in there with me and actually read everything hahaha. Honestly though I think I want to start writing a recap like this at the end of every year! Looking back at all of the adventures I’ve had this year was fun and it reminded me that I have done a lot of cool stuff in my life. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that on days that feel never ending or mind numbingly boring. But life is full of ups and downs and the not-so-great times make the good times that much better! I hope you’ve had a wonderful year full of fun, laughter, adventures, and many happy, healthy miles!
Wishing you a wonderful New Years Eve and a very happy New Year! Stay safe and have fun out there! Here’s to making 2019 a FANTASTIC year!
Your happy, nostalgic, slightly sappy, blogger friend,
As of Tuesday I’ve been blogging here for 3 years! I thought that was pretty neat! I’ve met some really cool people and have felt like I was a part of an awesome community thanks to this blog. It’s been a fun 3 years! 🙂
Coincidentally, 3 years ago was when I started to get into races. I did my first half marathon in November of 2015 and then I did my very first organized “5k” in December of that year. My first 5k-ing experience was definitely an interesting one! The race I did was a super small, Christmas themed one, put on by one of the churches in my town. Unfortunately they don’t put it on anymore or else I totally would have done it again! I think it was one of the most unique races I’ve done as of yet!
It was held at night. As far as I know most races are held in the morning, so that was pretty cool! Especially because of all of the Christmas lights!! Which was the whole point of running at night, I suppose.
No race bibs. We were given Santa hats that had tiny Santa’s on them that light up instead.
Santa drove the course in a lime green VW beetle with the top pulled down and all decked out with Christmas lights. That was a lot of fun!
There were maybe 30 people who ran it? That took “small, local race” to a whole new level!
The finish line was one of those little yard tent things you use to shade patios in the summer. Covered in Christmas lights of course! 😊 No fancy time display, timing mats, or time chips.
Soooo many people from my town were out cheering on the runners! Honestly this race probably had the best crowd support I’ve ever experienced! And why not?!? It was our friends, neighbors, and police force cheering us on!
Remember how I said there was no fancy timing equipment? Apparently there was no measuring of the course either. This run was advertised as a 5k, but it actually came out to be around 3.03 miles. Not a big deal though. At the end of the day it was all just got fun. 😊
And last but not least, there was hot chocolate and cookies for all and the end! What’s not to love about that?! 🍪
Seriously, it was one of the most interesting and probably most fun runs I’ve ever done! 🎅🏻🏃🏻♀️ And can we just take a second to appreciate how long my hair was?!? Jeez that was kind of excessive and I kinda miss it. 😂
Also, fun little fact; that’s the only race I’ve ever done that I didn’t write a race recap for haha. But I mean, I pretty much summed it all up now. So that’ count’s for something, right? 😉
Anyway, I just want to take a second to acknowledge how big Whiskey is getting!!
She was such a tiny little thing when we got her, but she is growing into a beautiful dog! Haha you can see one of her ears has gone up. I thought she was going to end up with floppy ears, but it’s looking like I was wrong!! That one just kinda shot up over night! Every once in a while the other one will go up too, but it usually doesn’t stay that way long. But I’m thinking eventually it will end up being pricked too. Hahaha honestly I’m pretty excited about that! Obviously it really doesn’t matter much, but I do like dogs with pricked ears. 🙂
She is a very well built little puppy. She’s been going through a growth spurt and gained 6 pounds in a month hahaha. The vet is thinking she’ll get up to be around 30-35 pounds and I was thinking the same thing. Our vet is also pretty supportive of us breeding Finn to her as long as she doesn’t have any kind of health issues pop up, which is unlikely but it’s always a possibility.
Whiskey and Lily
Hahaha my house is super duper Christmas-y right now and it makes me super happy! 🙂 And now I’ve finally got a gift under my tree!! I’m literally the worst gift wrapper in the world, but Luke’s been threatening to go snooping for what I got him for Christmas so I had to wrap that today. But other than that, that’s the only gift we have under the tree. We’ve mailed some off so we aren’t like behind on Christmas shopping or anything, so that’s good. I temporarily had two under my tree! The little neighbor girl I babysit turned 5 yesterday so I had her gift under the tree for a whole hour haha. She came over today so obviously I gave it to her. Getting gifts is great, but honestly I think I like giving people something I know they’ll really like more! That’s always a great feeling. 🙂 And my neighbor seemed really happy with what I got her. It was just a stuffed Stitch (from Lilo and Stitch 😉 ). She told me she was definitely going to sleep with him tonight, so I figured that meant she liked him haha.
Anyway, last night Green Day put out a new music video as kind of a Christmas gift for their fans. Obviously I was pretty excited about that because they are my favorite haha. But I thought it was especially cool because it’s made up of a bunch of different clips from their Revolution Radio tour and they included a bunch of different clips of fans. I just think its really awesome that Green Day seems to love their fans just as much as their fans love them and when they do things like this it just makes you feel like you’re a part of something, ya know?
Hahaha I haven’t fangirl-ed in a while, so I’m not gonna apologize for doing it this time. 😉
Okey Dokey, that’s all for today!
Happy Friday eve, I hope everyone is enjoying the Christmas season!
Hey guys, no weekly recap from last week. Sorry about that… I’ve gotten kinda lazy about keeping up with my weekly recaps throughout the week, and it’s really hard to remember everything that happened and try to recap it all on Sunday. So I didn’t. I swear I’m gonna do better with it this week though. 😄👍🏻
Besides, last week really wasn’t all that exciting anyway. But these next few upcoming weeks should be! I’m pretty excited and slightly terrified. 😂
Anyway, as usual Sunday (yesterday) was my rest day. I spent a good majority of it (like, 6 hours I think?) bleaching and re-dyeing part of my hair (and scalp 😂) purple. So if you ever look at my photos and think “Ashley your hair kinda looks like shit and you need to fix it”, just know that I’m very aware, it just takes sooooo long to do that I always end up putting it off. Plus that section of my hair is super duper damaged. I’ve been dyeing it since I was 17, so honestly I’m kinda surprised it hasn’t just fallen out yet. But hey, at least it looks cool, right?!
Yeah so that’s what I spend my Sunday doing. Today was a little bit more productive. Well, running-wise at least. Got 6 miles in and I felt pretty fantastic! I’m very much enjoying the weather right now! It’s definitely been cooling off and feeling more like fall. I love it! Some of the trees are even starting to change colors! 🙂 Haha it’s really hard to see in the photo below, but the trees in the woods off in the distance are starting to turn yellow and brown. I love it!
The plan for today’s run was actually 5 miles but I ended up doing 6 because I’m an over achiever. 😉 Actually, because I wasn’t paying attention and it just kinda happened haha. But those are the best kinds of runs, right? Honestly I think this might have been my best run since this spring. I’ve been slogging along just trying to survive the summer but now that the weather is getting better running is starting to get a lot more enjoyable. 🙂 Now if only I could start feeling faster. Then I’d feel a little better about my upcoming half marathons. I’m currently still worried about them. But I’ve still got 47 and 48 days to go, so I’ve still got some time to make some improvements! 🙂
After my run I ate a quick snack and then got some strength training done with The Fit Collective! The fit collective is an online training program and it’s pretty neat! You get 3 new 30 minute at home strength workouts every week, access to personal trainers via email and their Facebook page, along with live Facebook Q&A sessions every month. They also have monthly goals and challenges along with a whole page on their website full of healthy recipes. Fun stuff!! The online membership is $20 a month, but if you hang tight for a few days I’ll have a code for new members to get 50% off of your first month. So it would be $10 instead of $20. 🙂
From my and then jointhefitcolletive’s intagram accounts. 🙂
So my workout for today was something that I’ve never done before and it was a lot of fun! Freaking hard, but fun! So the workout consisted of 8 moves. For the first set the goal was to do 10 reps of each move, then for the second set do 9 reps of each move, for the third 8 reps, and so on and so forth until you get to 1 rep for each move. So like I said, it was different and I really enjoyed it. Plus it totally kicked my butt too! It took me about 35 minutes to complete the workout and by the time I was done I was completely beat! It was really good though. I’m pretty stoked to continue on with this program and see what other fun workout they have in store!
Having fun is super important to me when it comes it working out. I get bored really easily and I find it hard to really stay consistent with anything that’s not running. That’s actually one of the reasons I started running! I was bored with my workout regimen and decided to give running a try. So far it’s the only thing that stuck, but I think The Fit Collective is really going to help in that regard! I don’t think I’m going to get bored getting 3 new workouts every week! 🙂
Around this time of year the sun shines through the trees right into our backyard in the morning and I think it’s super pretty. 🙂 I’m gonna have to start eating breakfast outside, just for the views.
Honestly I’d be much more inclined to eat outside in the morning if it wasn’t so freaking out out. At 7:00 this morning it was 80 degrees out and by 3 pm it was 92 but it felt like 100. Yuck. So yeah, I probably should have gotten up earlier to run this morning. I woke up at 7, but I probably should have been up at 5. That would have at least made my run for today a little bit more enjoyable.
The plan for today was 4 easy miles. Mission accomplished!! But since it was so hot out I don’t think I would have been able to accomplish anything other than an easy run today. I know I complain a lot about the heat, but it’s mostly because it’s just so damn frustrating! It slows me down hardcore, and that’s saying something because I’m already a super slow runner. It makes running much more difficult and I usually end up feeling drained, tired, and exhausted for the rest of the day after a run. Summer is just not for me, my friends. My body does not react well to hot weather.
That being said, today’s 4 miler wasn’t really too terribly bad. It was hot and humid and slow, but it wasn’t too miserable, all things considered. For going on 3 weeks now Rancid’s album Indestructible has been the soundtrack to like 90% of my running haha. But since I’m currently very much into that album right now it definitely made my run a little bit better this morning. 🙂 But it’s supposed to be even hotter tomorrow morning and no amount of good music is going to make that better, so I might just end up doing my interval workout on the treadmill. That thing has come in very handy this summer and I am eternally grateful to my sister for giving it to me!
Anyway, lucky for me I still have half of a watermelon in my fridge and literally nothing is better than cold watermelon after a super hot run! So refreshing! So tasty! Watermelons are probably my favorite thing about summer! Haha I don’t even bother slicing them or cutting them up or anything. I just scoop the flesh right out of the rind. My preffered method of doing that is with an ice cream scoop (because bigger bites, duh 😉 ) but a normal spoon works just as well. 🙂
After my run I did a little bit of strength work as well. I wanted to do at least 30 minutes but I made it through 15 haha. I was completely dead after running in the heat this morning. Who’s bright idea was it to only ever run fall half marathons? Because a good majority of training for them happens in the summer. Maybe I should aim for a spring one next year. The only problem with that is that I’m terrified race day will end up being warm and I’m obviously not a fan of that. Oh man, honestly it’s probably a good thing that I always aim for fall races. That pretty much forces me to run in the summer and I need all the motivation I can get to run when it’s hot out.
Anyway, I’ve spent a good majority of my day searching for one of my favorite t-shirts. Have you ever had one that was just super comfy and fit you super well and that you absolutely love? Yeah, that’s how I feel about this one, but dammit if I can’t find it anywhere! And I’ve looked in some weird places. Sure I started out with the obvious ones, my closet, drawer, and the laundry room. But eventually I resorted to under my bed (and we don’t have a bed frame so I literally had to lift up the mattress and box spring), behind the dresser and my nightstand, under/between the washing machine and dryer, and under the couch. But nope. Nothing… It’s very sad really and I have no clue where I could have left it. I just noticed it was missing because I almost exclusively wear tank tops in the summer, so who knows when I actually lost it. Sad face. Haha but on the bright side, I cleaned pretty much everywhere I looked! You would not believe the amount of dog hair and dirt that accumulates under my couch in just a few months. I should probably clean under there more often. 😂
I also had some more chicken drama today. It can get pretty windy here in Kansas. Especially in the spring and fall, and the wind has definitely been picking up lately. This afternoon it was particularly bad. So bad that it literally moved the dog kennel around the chicken coop back a couple of feet, and somehow while that happened two of the chickens got out. Luckily they’re pretty easy to catch and they never go far, so I was able to get them back to where they belong pretty easily. But since the wind was still blowing the dog kennel around, I put them all into the actual coop so that couldn’t happen again. Luckily that is too heavy for the wind to blow around, so it wasn’t going anywhere.
You can see the line in the grass where the kennel used to be and obviously the pool used to be inside of it. The wind moved it pretty far!
So when Luke got home from work we set to work, anchoring the dog kennel to the ground, so this whole situation wouldn’t happen again. We had some little anchors that Luke hammered through the very bottom of the chain link into the ground, but we didn’t think that would be enough, so he also put in a post to help keep it in place. Then we made a few adjustments to the tarp situation, and now we thing it should hold up better in the wind. 🙂
The tiny raptors were very happy to be let back out. There isn’t a lot of room in the inner part of the coop for all 8 of them. That’s part of the reason we built the whole dog kennel set up thing. Plus as long as it’s not being blown around by the wind, it gives them a little bit more protection at night or if we’re not home to keep an eye on them.
Remember how almost a year ago I got to see my all time favorite band for the second time and it was literally the best thing ever and I was the happiest camper that ever was?!?!? Yeah, me too.
Yeah that was super-duper irrelevant, but I shared that on Instagram this morning so I thought why not share it here as well. 😉
Anyway, this week has been a little hard so far, half marathon training-wise. I had a rest day on Monday, followed by an interval session on Tuesday. That went REALLY well and I had a blast doing it. Probably because it was raining and a little bit cooler that day. And I also really like interval work haha. But after that everything had been a bit of a struggle. I’ve just been really tired this week (menstruating does that to me sometimes) and have been struggling to get up and moving in the mornings. Plus after the rain on Tuesday it got really hot, humid, and gross out again. And we’ve been getting more air quality alerts which really sucks. I was hoping we were done with heat and air quality warnings, but obviously we are not. I’m really hoping that August ends up being our last really hot month, but September can still be pretty warm too. I guess we’ll have to wait and see though.
Now that being said, I’ve still been sticking to my training plan and getting shit done!! Just a little more slowly this week. 😉 The plan for today was an easy 5 miler. I started out on the road but I didn’t wake up early enough this morning, so at about 3 miles in it was 80 degrees with 90% humidity, sunny, and the air quality was really bad. So I gave up finishing my run outside and completed it on the treadmill instead. Really glad I have that option now, otherwise this run would have been cut short! 🙂 I’ve got a hill workout on the scheduled for tomorrow and I still haven’t decided if I want to try to do it outside or just do the whole thing on the treadmill. It’s supposed to be pretty gross out tomorrow as well…
Anyway, after my run this morning I was pretty busy! I spent the rest of the morning cleaning EVERYTHING haha. I did a bunch of laundry, watered and tended to the garden, cleaned both of my rabbits’ cages which is a time-consuming process for various reasons, completely cleaned and took every inch of the room they live in, and then kinda spot cleaned the rest of the floor through out the house. Oh and periodically checking on the chickens and giving them ice, since they seem to hate this weather just as much as I do. After all of that was taken care of I showered, ate lunch, and sat down to read for about an hour because I felt like I needed a bit of a break after all of that haha. But at around 2 pm I was back at it again, this time doing dishes and cleaning the kitchen, and then putting away laundry. Usually I don’t enjoy doing chores around the house, but today I really was for some reason so I was trying to take advantage of that. 😉
Oh and I’ve been doing a pretty good job of keeping up with my little push up challenge! Las night I thought I had forgotten to do them during the day, but when I checked the scheduled yesterday was actually a rest day so that worked out haha. I did my 7 push ups for today later in the afternoon after my cleaning frenzy. I did all 7 on my toes which I was pretty darn proud of! I’m still not able to go down all the way, but before 5 was the most I could do on my toes and I felt like I was dying doing them. Now it’s still hard, but I feel pretty good doing them! Haha and maybe by the time this challenge is over my push ups wont look so half assed. 😉
Well, that pretty much sums up what I’ve done today though. Like I said, tomorrow I’ve got a hill workout to do, and probably a little bit of strength work too. And of course Saturday is my long run day. Then Saturday evening Luke and I are going to a housewarming party. I’m not sure who is all going to be there but the only people I’ll know are the couple who are throwing the party and Luke. Not exactly an introverts idea of a good time haha. Not gonna lie, I’m already looking forward to my rest day on Sunday. I’m already worn out just thinking about all of that! 😉 But I’ve been pushing through and getting it done! I’m so so so very ready for fall to get here, but I can’t deny that all of these hard summer miles aren’t helpful. They make running in the colder months seem so much easier and feel that much more enjoyable. Summer miles bring fall smiles!
All righty then! That is all from me for now!
How’s your summer running been going? Are you currently training for anything? Do you like running in the warmer months or the colder months better and why? Apparently I’m just full of questions today! But I would really like to know your answers! 🙂
Happy Friday eve!! I hope your week has been good so far!
I started out my running journey almost 5 years ago on a treadmill in my old apartment complexes fitness center, but once I started running on the paved trail that was near by, I ditched the treadmill and never looked back. In that time I’ve forgotten a little something about myself; I’m super duper awkward on treadmills!
So just going back a little bit, last weekend Luke and I went to Illinois for one of his brother’s high school graduation party. While we were there we picked up my sister’s old treadmill from her boyfriend’s mom’s house. My sister (actually, both of my sister’s, my brother, and both of my parents) live in Colorado now. It would have been more expensive for her to rent a truck and drive all the way to Illinois just to get it, and since she knew Luke just recently bought a new truck, she told me that we could take it. And that, my friends, is how I ended up getting a $600 treadmill for free. Pretty sweet deal if you ask me!! 😉
Originally I wasn’t going to take the treadmill. “I’m a road runner!” I told myself, “I pride myself in running in ALL OF THE WEATHER CONDITIONS!” And that is true, but in the summer months I always end up running a lot less and basically not doing any kind of speed work, because I do not do well in the heat. It absolutely drains me and my running kinda suffers because of it. So after thinking about that for a while, I figured why not take the treadmill? I could probably utilize it in a way to supplement my outdoor running and actually do some speed work in the summer! So at this point I’m pretty stoked to have it. Even though it’s kinda huge and taking up a lot of room in my living room haha.
Anyway, back to my original point. I run weird on treadmills. And I’ve kinda forgotten about that little fact until now. Once I had started running on that trail back in the apartment days I realized how natural treadmill running felt to me. I also realized how quickly I tore shoes up while running on a treadmill. Once I started running on asphalt my shoes started lasting me a lot longer. Probably because running on a revolving belt is just naturally going to wear them out faster, but also because my running gait is just super awkward while moving on said revolving belt and I’ve never been able to get into a good rhythm on one. And honestly I probably never will.
So I’ve only run twice since Sunday when we brought this thing home. Both runs were on the treadmill and both runs felt super weird. Now, I know I’m slow, but a little simple math told me that my Garmin wasn’t reading correctly with that first run on Monday and that I was going somewhere around a 13:30 pace and not a 15 minute per mile pace. Haha that was a huge relief! Because that first run felt HARD! So I’m not actually sure about the distance on this run. I’m not all that worried about it though, I figured out how to calibrate my watch to the treadmill and it was pretty close to what the treadmill was reading on Tuesday. Still not sure how accurate the treadmill is, but I’m just gonna roll with it haha.
First treadmill run in a very long time on Monday!
You might notice in the photo above that I’m not wearing any shoes. Haha remember how I said I tear shoes up while running on the treadmill? Yeah, I don’t want to be doing that right now. You see, I’m down to one pair of running shoes (I just had to retire my current pair of Nike Free’s. It was a sad day), my Nike Pegasus and they’re getting close to being halfway through their running life with me. I can usually get about 300 ish miles out of a pair of shoes before they have to retire to my “everyday” shoes, and then I can usually wear them for about another year before I have to get rid of them. It’s a good system for me. 🙂 But anyway, since I’m down to one pair of running shoes and currently not able to spend $100 to get a new pair (that whole trip to Illinois, our up coming family vacation that Luke’s mom has been planning, and having to pay bills, buy food, and other adult stuff like that is really slowing the whole getting new running shoes thing down). So in order to preserve my current pair of shoes I’ve done both of my runs this week in my socks!!
(Just a little side note here guys, I have a ko-fi account now! You might have notice the “Buy Me A Coffee” button on the side of my blog. I actually spent a lot of time thinking about whether or not I should join ko-fi, because I didn’t want anyone to think I was like, begging for money or anything. And I’m totally not! But you know, I do work pretty hard on this blog and my other social media accounts. I put myself out there and share my story in some pretty up close and personal ways. So I figured why not give people a way to show me some love and support in the small way of “buying me a coffee” if they want to. And if they don’t, no big deal and no hard feelings. It’s not like I started this blog to make boatloads of money. Although I’d be lying if I said that wouldn’t be nice. 😉 But anyway, just thought I’d throw that out there really quick. I probably wont be bringing it up much though.)
So anyway, in order to preserve the life of my remaining pair of running shoes, I’ve done both of my runs this week in just my socks. I figured it wouldn’t be that big of a deal though. As kids my sisters and I would run around the farm barefoot all the time. We’d walk around corn fields, cow pastures, the woods, our gravel driveway, and even ride our bikes all sans shoes, and it was great!! And it’s not like I wear shoes all the time anyway. Nowadays I always walk around my house in just socks. I ride my stationary bike barefoot, tend to my garden barefoot or in flip flops or rubber boots (so, shoes that basically have no support whatsoever). I’ve even played tennis and helped Luke practice for softball either barefoot or in socks. Haha we’ve actually discoverd that I pitch better without shoes on! Although that’s probably just a weird coincidence, but now whenever we got out to the softball fields and there’s no home plate out we just use my shoes because I’m a-ok with not wearing them haha.
P.S. I’m totally in love with my Zensah watermelon compression socks!! 🍉😄[/[/[/[/[/[/
I’ve also got an affinity for minimalist shoes. Hence why I love Nike Free’s so much. Don’t get me wrong, I love my Pegasus. They’re a great training shoe and a good way for me to switch things up a little bit, but I wont do races in them haha. Compared to the Free’s they just feel heavy to me. I don’t even like wearing them on long runs, but I do because I know it’s good for me. But anyway, since I’m quite often barefoot, or wearing socks or minimalist shoes, I figured my feet, ankles, and legs would be strong enough to do my treadmill running in just my socks. But I think I might have overdone it a bit yesterday. I ran 4 miles on the treadmill, very awkwardly because like I said, treadmill running is weird and hard, in just my socks. I’m not hurt or injured or anything, but my calves are just super tight today! My guess is from running super duper awkwardly on the treadmill two days in a row and now wearing shoes probably didn’t help.
Haha yesterday I actually spent those 4 miles watching part of a full Green Day concert on YouTube. I have no idea how people can go to a concert and record the whole thing! I’m too busy singing and dancing to even consider taking decent pictures, let along record a video! But I am incredibly grateful to the people who do! Haha yesterday’s 4 miles flew by thanks to whoever recorded this concert! I find treadmill running to be incredibly boring, so I never thought I’d say treadmill miles just flew by! So that was really nice!! But like I said, I woke up with super tight calves today, so I figured I needed to rest them and stretch them, so that’s been my goal for today.
I actually wanted to run outside today. The weather has been a little less hot thanks to some rain we have in the forecast, so it would have been nice to take it outside today. But my tight calves are making my heels hurt a little bit. I’ve dealt with plantar fasciitis before (and ironically I got it from running in a pair of shoes that were waaay to supportive for my feet. I have very high arches and I’ve found the less support a shoe has, the better!) and I definitely didn’t want to go through all of that again, so I figured taking the day off and getting my calves to loosen up a bit was obviously the better option. So I spent about 30 minutes on my yoga mat doing just that. I still felt a little tight, but a lot better after that!
So I’m hoping tomorrow they feel even better and I’ll be able to run on them. The weather forecast is saying that it’s supposed to be in the 60’s and cloudy with a chance of rain, so I’d like to run in that before it starts getting hot and gross again!! But once it does, at least I’ll have the treadmill as an option. 🙂
I’ve also got another dentist appointment tomorrow to get my permanent crowns put on. So hopefully that all goes well. But that is all I’ve got for now, so happy hump day everyone!
This whole Ozzy situation has officially gotten out of hand. So Luke and I finally did something about it yesterday.
Ozzy is my neighbor’s dog. He’s been getting into my yard a lot for the past several weeks and terrorizing my chickens. But now he’s getting even worse about it. So something had to be done.
So, on Thursday night when Luke got home from work we began building a structure to protect them. We didn’t get very far with it that night though. It was pouring down rain and we were under a sever thunderstorm warning and it’s kinda hard to work outside in those conditions. Plus we ran out of daylight pretty quickly, so we had to stop and then continue the next morning.
It was a rough morning. Things weren’t going the way Luke had planned and after our little building project had fallen apart twice we decided to stop, go get some food, regroup, and figure out a better way to go about this thing we were trying to accomplish. Oh and did I mention that it was hot, humid, and super gross out that morning following the thunderstorm from the night before? Yeah, it stayed like that all day and it was pretty awful.
Anyway, while we were eating we did some brain storming and came up with the idea to get a dog kennel. If we could get one that was big enough the chicken coop would fit in it, when Ozzy wasn’t around the chickens would have more area to roam around in, and when he was we’d be able to lock them up in the coop and they’d be more protected from him. And plus we figured a dog kennel would be easier to assemble than what we were trying to build, so after we ate we ended up at Tractor Supply.
At Tractor Supply we learned that the super fancy dog kennels don’t all come in one DIY kit. You have to buy pretty much each panel individually, which would get crazy expensive crazy fast, because each piece was close to $100 and that wasn’t even including the dog house, ramp, and roof that you could add to this kennel. But after some searching we found exactly what we wanted. A DIY dog kennel kit that came with the WHOLE kennel and not just sections of it, for $200. Not bad! The only thing that wasn’t included in the kit was a top cover though. That came all by itself for an additional $50. I though that was stupid, so I asked Luke if we could just get a tarp to cover the top. He thought that was a really good idea and wanted to know why it took me that long to come up with it haha. So after we loaded up our dog kennel into the truck we went to Home Depot and got a $15 dollar tarp and a few $1.50 bungee cords. That seemed a lot more reasonable than a $50 cover for the kennel. 🙂
So we went home, unloaded the truck, and Luke said he still wasn’t sure how we were going to fit the coop into this kennel once it was built. That’s when I asked him if it wouldn’t just be easier to build the kennel around the coop, because that’s what I thought we were going to do anyway. Haha that was my second fantastic idea for the day, and I’m surprised that my engineer husband didn’t come up with that one all on his own! 😉 So we moved the chicken coop to the area we wanted to build the kennel in, and then began to assemble it.
There is actually grass and weeds in the new spot that we moved to coop to, and the chickens were definitely enjoying it!!
So we did end up running into a few bumps along the road that was putting this kennel together, but all in all it went pretty well. It was definitely a lot easier than what we were trying to do before!!
We got the frame assembled very quickly, had a little bit of an issue with the gate, but Luke figured that out, and then put up the chain-link! Some dude at Tractor Supply (we are pretty sure that he didn’t even work their haha) told us that putting up the chain-link was going to be a bitch and we shouldn’t even bother buying the kit, but it was actually pretty easy! A bit time consuming, but still, it really wasn’t that hard. And once it was all put together we let the chickens out to explore a little bit (under close supervision from Lily and Finn 😉 ) and took a short break before we put the tarp over top of it.
The tarp ended up being really easy to put up as well, plus it kinda helped it re-enforce the whole thing. Luke also put a steak in the middle of it so that the rain, snow, or whatever should fall right off of it instead of pooling up on it. So now the chickens can’t fly out, nothing else could fly in, and they’ve got plenty of shade and should be a little more protected from the elements in general.
Lily, who was raised on a farm, has some legit herding training, and grew up around chickens and therefore knows how to handle herself around them, is a big fan of this new setup haha. Now she can get in the kennel with them and keep an eye on them and kinda sorta herd them a bit. 😉 Finn thinks it’s pretty neat too! And although he’s got some pretty impressive instincts, he’s never had any kind of herding training, and is young and excitable, so he’s not allowed in there with them. At least not yet. But he seems to think that it’s pretty neat that they can move around more, so he can kinda follow them around a little bit more.
All in all we’re very happy with how the dog kennel set up ended up working, and like I said, now the chickens have some more room to roam when Ozzy isn’t around to bother them, they’ll be a little bit more protected from the elements, and when Ozzy does get into my yard they can just be put into their coop and then he won’t be able to be as close to them or jump up on or scratch at the coop anymore. So that’s pretty freaking sweet!! I mean, it does kinda suck that we had to go through all of this trouble because of someone else dog, but still, the chickens end up benefiting a lot from it, so at least there’s that.
Alright then, now I have to get up on my soapbox and talk about why herding/working/high-energy/highly intelligent breeds of dogs don’t make good pets unless you’re prepared to deal with them and know 100% what you’re getting into with certain breeds of dogs. Because that’s the problem with Ozzy. He’s a heeler or a heeler mix. So he’s a herding dog. He’s pretty smart, full of energy, and he’s also bored and lonely because he’s left out in my neighbor’s backyard all day while he’s at work. That is basically a recipe for disaster when it comes to these kinds of dogs. You CANNOT get a high-energy/intelligent breed of dog and expect them to just be content running around a yard by themselves all day. They’ll end up getting bored and then doing things like barking excessively, digging, tearing stuff up, or escaping into your neighbors yard and terrorizing her chickens and rabbits, and playing with her 2 high-energy dogs who are out there a lot (haha Lily has separation anxiety, so she’ll only hang out in the backyard if Luke or myself go out there with her).
My dogs know how to behave around the chickens and don’t want to kill/chase them. Lily and Finn just want to herd them/guard them, and Dean wants nothing to do with them. Ozzy wants to make them move, chase them, and then probably rip them to pieces. This photo was taken right before Finn started fighting Ozzy, because Ozzy was bothering his chickens. Finn thinks his job it to keep the chickens safe and that’s exactly what he was trying to do.
After seeing the way my dogs behave and how smart they are, a lot of people who see them actually end up telling me that they want a border collie (or something similar) as well. And honestly I tend to try to discourage them because these types of dogs need a lot of exercise, attention, and mental stimulation. Like, A LOT. They are happiest when they are working. And when they aren’t they become problems which is why a lot of them end up in shelters labeled as “hyper” or “aggressive” or with “behavioral issues”. So that’s why I think that unless you have the time, patience, knowledge, and energy to care for a dog that’s a herding/working/high-energy/highly intelligent breed, most people would be better off with a different breed of dog. And remember that this is coming from someone with 3 border collies and thinks that they are the best dogs in the world haha. But they are not for everyone. Luke and I spend a lot of time making sure that they get the attention that they need and that they all have “jobs”. We also take them to an off leash dog park almost every weekend.
They don’t just get to run around all willy nilly at the dog park. They’re constantly being told to come, sit, stay, and do other tricks and commands, to keep them mentally stimulated and to make them feel like they’re working.
But they also get to play around a little bit while we’re there. 🙂
And whenever possible we like to take them to new places and put them into different situations. So they’re prepared for pretty much anything and always know how to act, no matter where we are or whats going on.
When we’re at home fetch is a way of life and is taken very seriously.
Individual walks happen pretty much everyday, regardless of the weather. The longer the better, although shorter ones will suffice if pressed for time.
It’s not exactly easy, but Luke and I have gotten pretty good and wearing them out!! 🙂
Ok, I’m done now. But obviously this is something that’s near and dear to my heart and it drives me crazy seeing a good dog turn into a problem. In almost every situation it’s not the dogs fault, it’s the handler. Because trust me, my dogs are fantastic! And I’ve met a lot of amazing dogs, but they don’t come that way. You have to MAKE them that way. And that’s a lot easier to do when you get a dog that you know with out a shadow of a doubt that you can handle and provide everything that it could possible need. That way you’re life will be a lot easier and you’ll end up with an amazing dog.
Whew! I didn’t mean to go onto a tangent like that, but I think the more that things like that get said, the better!
Anyways, after our building adventures were done we were finally able to spend the rest of the evening in the glorious air conditioner!! And that night someone live-streamed most of The Longshot’s concert that happened last night on Billie Joe Armstrong’s Instagram account, so obviously my little fangirl heart was as happy as could be! It looked like one hell of a show and I’m super duper jealous of anyone who gets to see The Longshot live, because they aren’t coming anywhere near where I live haha. But it is nice to at least get to see it on my phone. 🙂
Haha between getting another root canal and this big project, I haven’t gotten a lot of running done this week. But it’s all good! I felt like I could use a little bit of a break from all of the gross summer running anyway. 😉 Plus all of the work we did putting together that dog kennel for the chickens hardcore wore me out!! When I woke up this morning I decided that I wasn’t going to do shit today, and so far so good!! 😉 I’m very much on board with having the laziest Saturday ever!!
I hope you have a fantastic day and a great Memorial Day weekend!!
Your very dog obsessed friend,
*squee!!!!!* Finn was so little!!!!! Haha he wasn’t a very cute puppy though. 😉