mmmmm … BUTTER … field Canyon

IMG_5643I love running.

This much should be a given considering the title of my blog. But, more than running, I love running with friends. Especially when the weather takes a turn for the worst. If there is anything I hate more (besides The Christmas Shoes) it’s being outside during winter.

So having friends that want to run in the middle of winter helps … A LOT. Whether they are old or new friends it’s always MUCH easier for me to run outside in the cold and snow with other people. And, I feel extremely lucky to have such an awesome group of friends that feel the same way and organize group runs throughout the year — whether it’s in the cold, rain, heat or wind.

The gaggle of runners before running up Butterfield Canyon.

This past weekend we planned a run UP Butterfield Canyon. This was the same canyon that I ran up and down earlier this month during The Burn race with Jill. We had so much fun running the canyon that Jill and I wanted to drag together some of our other friends for a run.

The run up the canyon is 6.55 miles and then obviously 6.55 back down. Which turns out to be a perfect 13.1 miles. Since it took Jill and I nearly four hours to finish the half earlier this month we kind of decided not to go as far. Maybe eight-ish? Four miles up and down.

(I don’t know why I feel the need to clarify that I have to run back down the canyon since I am running up it. This should be a given, excuse me if I am making you feel like an idiot.)

The rear-pushers … Jill, me and Christy!

The weather for Saturday was suppose to be rainy with the possibility of turning into snow. It wasn’t suppose to happen until later in the afternoon so we weren’t too worried since the run started at 8:30am. The threat of rain was real though as the clouds look ominous (big word for me to use here) all morning long.

So, I came prepared for rain and cold.

I am done with the days of making bad decisions, so I wore my stretchy pants, layered shirts with one being long-sleeved and my beanie hat to keep my ears warm. I was prepared. I was putting my Eagle Scout award, that my mother earned, to use. The only thing I lacked was a garbage bag for me to throw over me if it rained. Luckily, the odds were in my favor and it didn’t rain while I was running.

Principal Shelley … or … better known to me as the Crazy Josh Cat Shirt Lady.

The group was a mixture of about 20+ runners from two of my online running groups. And, we all just started up the canyon which the fast runners obviously taking off before us. Jill, Christy and I were pushing up the rear mainly because we were pushing Addison in her stroller. Each of us took a turn to push her. It wasn’t that bad, except the alignment was a tad off to the right.

But, once we got up to about 2.6-ish miles up the canyon the paved road turned into a snowy and icy hazardous mess. I will be the first person to tell you that I don’t know ice. I just don’t. I’ve slipped on ice before while running. It’s not fun. I’ve also come close to re-blowing out my knee on ice before and so I’ve ALWAYS been UBER conscience on snow and ice. It’s really part of the reason why I hate the two so much.

Anyways, I digress.

While most of the runners ran through the snow and ice further up the mountain a small group of us stopped at the snow and ice and turned around. It still gave us a great run over 5 miles. And, the run back down was a lot of fun with a lot of laughing as we stopped seconds before a downpour hit us. You couldn’t have asked for better timing. You really couldn’t.

No, this is not my harem. These are my running friends! I love these peeps! Even more than these Peeps!

Since I carpooled with the Gabicas we threw Addison in the car (not literally folks) and booked it to Maverik for hot chocolate to warm up before heading home. A perfect end to a winter run. I am sure I’ll have some similar experiences during the next 2-3 months. Hopefully not many dealing with bad weather, but with friends … yes.

But, now the focus is on the Thankful 13 on Thanksgiving morning. I am pacing the 2:40 group while also pushing Elsha. It’s going to be a lot of fun. I am looking forward to it. It will be my 84th race towards my 180 goal … and … 30th race over 13.1 miles this year that I’ve ran. I never would have thought I would be running 30 races this year. That’s including four marathons and two back-to-back half marathons as well. Lots of running.

Stretching women in their natural habitat while it’s raining. Fun?

The eyes are focused not just on Thankful 13, but also 2015 and my SUB-TWO half marathon goal. I really need to start running and racing smarter and training like a pro. Or at least a semi-pro with aspirations of getting into the Boston … half marathon.

You get the point.

Happy Thanksgiving Week and I’ll be here all week, just remember I won’t have a Fartlek Friday post. I’ll be posting my Thankful 13 recap on Friday instead. Or should I call that Black Friday? Whatever the case is … ENJOY THE WEEK!

Total Mileage Breakdown for 2014

2014 Training Miles – 522.6 miles
2014 Walking Miles – 138.15 miles
2014 Race Miles – 447.35 miles
2014 Total Miles – 1108.1 miles
Monthly Total Miles for 2014
January – 100.0 miles
February – 100.0 miles
March – 130.0 miles
April – 140.5 miles
May – 108.65 miles
June – 83.3 miles
July – 93.75 miles
August – 118.2 miles
September – 88.55 miles
October – 106.8 miles
November – 52.95 miles



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