Posts Tagged With: Ultra Running

You Should Never Hike The Grand Canyon with a Baby

but I did….

(but I’m not telling you to)

Despite growing up in AZ I had never actually hiked into the Canyon. After having Tag and feeling great post birth (and in the best shape I have been in in a long time) I decided I would put everything I could on my “to-do” list and make adventures happen. Having limited time away from him at least half my training for my races has included hiking as steep an incline as I can find while wearing him. He has been quite the trooper and really taken to napping while we hike (which can be a bummer on a day I’m not feeling like hiking!).

I have hiked a lot while baby wearing, 13 years of baby wearing for me at this point. The biggest question I get is “aren’t you afraid of falling”. Well, yes I am. I used to live in a 3 story town house when I had only 2 little ones and I would constantly be scared of falling down the stairs with them. Curbs scare me when I’m holding little ones. Basically my fears come from the “normal” things in life. The things you aren’t normally thinking about, that is when accidents happen. When I am hiking I am very aware of every step and overly cautious. No, I am not going to stand on the very edge of the Canyon and stare over the side, but as long as I am conscious of what I am doing and paying attention, the likelihood of tripping is less then normal day to day activities. Plus when you are wearing (as oppose to holding) you have 2 hands free to catch yourself!

So the plan was set to do a Rim-River-Rim with baby Tag. Despite everything online telling you to not try to do it in a day, 18 miles seemed doable for me while baby wearing (totally not for everyone). I didn’t have many reservations but as the day grew closer and rain was in the forecast, I became a little concerned. I HATE being cold, and I really couldn’t worry about myself as much. I had to be sure Tag was comfortable. All this meant was some online shopping for the perfect baby gear.

Waking up the day of our hike I was reminded how difficult it is to get yourself AND a newborn ready for a big adventure. Waking up a baby to get him ready, having to pee, it being cold outside, trying to plan when I could nurse before we started, how I could not make everyone else late (we started at the same time as some other friends) and trying to make sure I didn’t forget anything… Exhausting! But it worked out and Tag (such a trooper) allowed me to get us both ready, nurse him, and he slept the entire way to the South Kaibab Trail head.

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We totally weren’t scared!

Honestly, it was a pretty uneventful hike (that’s a good thing!). My sister joined us on minimal training and we took our time into the Canyon. Down to Phantom Ranch took almost 4 hours with no stopping just slow walking. Tag nursed a little on the way down but mostly slept comfortably. There was a drizzle of rain but nothing too crazy. At Phantom we took a 45 minute break where Tag was awake and playing. He hung out, made friends, and had a diaper change in the fresh rainy air. Putting him back on to head out, he fussed some but went directly back to sleep.

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Pretty sure I was explaining that he was in fact a real live baby he just sleeps and makes me do all the hard work!

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Lemonade!

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Phantom Ranch chillin

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The smallest person at the bottom of the Canyon that day!

 

Heading up Bright Angel the rain picked up some but Tag was unconcerned. As long as I kept the boob out, he had no worries in the world. I did not enjoy the cold boob or rain drops in my cleavage, but baby always wins. If you saw me in the canyon that day there is a good chance you saw my nipple, sorry about that! There were plenty of nice men I played leapfrog with on the way up (I would power up then wait for my sister. I was “that” annoying hiker but Tag needed me to move!).  I got a lot of questions about how Tag was doing (what about mmmmeeee??) and my answer was almost always “sleeping”. At one point Tag was screaming and a couple of runners (dirtbag runners I believe) came by, “Are you ok?”… Me “Oh yes he just lost the boob”.. Silence…. I must have not thought about my audience for that one!

We made it out of the Canyon with a totally time of about 11 hours which included resting at Phantom Ranch and 2 other diaper change stops. Could I have done fast? Yes. I promised myself (and my sister) that there would be no time goals and no plan. Just a long walk all day looking at a beautiful place. Even with the rain and fog (that settled in as we were almost of the canyon) the Canyon is amazing. Don’t ask Tag about it though, he wasn’t very awed….

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Tan lines=Boob is out

 

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So let’s talk gear!

Sleeping- Camping with babies is always a pain. They move, sleeping bags move, they need to be warm! I bought Tag the Frosty Freeze Bunting by Columbia and was so flipping happy about it! We slept in the car and he slept on my chest. At one point as he woke up to nurse I reached in to feel his body temperature and he was on fire! I had to unzip him to cool him off some. Now with the fluffiness of it, if I didn’t co-sleep and have him touching me the entire evening, I may be slightly uncomfortable with him sleeping in it, but it worked perfectly for us.

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Wearing- I am huge into more “traditional” carriers. I use mei tais, ring slings, wraps, nothing with buckles. A while ago a friend suggested a Boba Air and I decided to have it as a “keep in the car” carrier. Not only is it awesome in how little space it takes up, but I can wear a baby on my front and my hydration pack (Ultimate direction Jenny Vest) on my back! With how minimal the Boba air is (unlike a ergo with padded straps) the pack fits like normal and I was not uncomfortable at all, over 11 hours of baby/pack wearing and I felt awesome. I did end up with a small side blister from the Boba which I found entertaining more than anything. At no point did I feel it happening and only noticed the next day when I went running shirtless!

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A rare moment of Tag awakeness in the Canyon! Boba + Jenny Vest for the win!

 

What Baby Wore- When I ordered the sleeping bunting I also ordered Columbia bugababy interchange bunting, oh my greatness! Tag was wearing a short sleeve onesie, a long sleeve footsie onesie, smart wool socks, and the bunting. He was dry and warm the entire time! I was actually jealous every time I put my hand in to feel how warm he was! My Northface shell is great but by the end I was cold and wet, not Tag! One thing I do regret is I bought 0-3 month and when I was wearing him I couldn’t pull the cuffs over his feet to keep them dry as well. I ended up wrapping a dollar store poncho around my waist to cover his feet which worked out just fine. I am so stocked with both my Columbia purchases and how well they worked for my little guy!

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Tag in his perfect rain attire with my Sis.

All and all it was a Grand adventure for the 3 of us! Do I recommend heading out the the Canyon right now for everyone? No. But with my experience and the time I took preparing both baby and myself, we were ready and had an amazing day together! Start with a small victory, a small mountain, a short trail, just get moving! Eventually your perception changes and anything is possible!

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We made it! (Tag still sleeping…)

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All warm and dry in the car!

 

Categories: Adventures with Littles | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Running after baby!

Well its been 6 weeks since little man made his exit and I am DYING to have a race schedule, but nothing is planned yet. Some days I get to run, some I just get to hike, totally depends on when I can corner my Mom and get her to wear Tag while I get my run on. So how is running going these days for me?

As if running while pregnant isn’t enough of an adventure you then roll into the world of everyone telling you to “take it easy” so your uterus doesn’t fall out. For the record my uterus is still inside my body.

Week 1-  7.5 miles

Lets start with the day he was born, I hiked 4 miles (I’m sure you all ready this so you already know that). 3 days later my car needed work and I had 6 children to get to the store with, so we walked… 3.5 painfully uncomfortable and slow miles.

Week 2- 4.1 miles

I was dying. LITERALLY DYING! I needed to get out! So I hiked 1.1 miles on the mountain (totally breaking the rules) and walked 3 with some awesome lady friends (still breaking the rules).

Week 3- 20.9 miles

On day 17 I went into my midwives wearing running clothes. They gave me the OK to start “slowly” running and off I run! Literally. 9 of the miles this week were running and I felt like I was flying. I did everything I could to take it easy, but with the belly gone and the ability to breathe running just felt way too awesome. Tag made his first summit of Squaw Peak this week, he slept through it.

Week 4- 24.2

My goal has been to keep my running at a “easy” pace and hiking with Tag as “up” as I can. This week I ran 14.1 miles and Climbed 2,200 feet while wearing him. Hiking was feeling easier and easier and running was fun again!

Week 5- 27.2 Miles

DUUUDE! 6,400 feet of climbing while wearing this guy! We did 3,000 feet on one day, man it feels nice to spend 3 1/2 hours on a mountain. I only ran 10.6 miles, some days it’s harder to get someone to watch a baby.. Life…

Week 6- 25.1

This week has been a little sad… I was really hoping to be over 30 miles and much more climbing but shit just didn’t work. I don’t have extra hands around and my Mom can only watch him so much, so some days I have to suck it up and not run… Not matter how much it kills me. Plus, I was lazy. I could have totally gotten more climbing in but I just didn’t. Only 4,750 feet. Sigh…

I had an easy pregnancy, easy birth, and have had an easy running “come-back”. Luck? Maybe. But maybe a little of having a clear plan and strategy about coming back and continuing to run my entire pregnancy. I’m really hoping to pick some races and see what my body can do at this point. Planning to stop and nurse a baby that doesn’t have a schedule (and no I will not put him on a schedule) makes things even more tricky… But believe you me, I’ll be out at a race soon. Watch me now!

 

 

Categories: Parenting | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Hey Asshole Dog Owners!

I get it, your dog is friendly, I don’t care! If your dog is off leash it better be under control  which means NOT leaving your side or coming anywhere near my dog or kids. If your dog begins following us we are not stopping to help you get your dog back. Yup, I’m an asshole. My dog is ON leash (except maybe in the backcountry where you see no one) and I’m not responsible for your poor decisions.

Now, if your dog is on a leash and you can not control it we have even more issues. If your dog is going to pull toward the giant pregnant lady and her dog running on the trail, maybe you should not be on the trail! How about being a little more particular on where you walk your dog? Not only is it dangerous to my dog (I really don’t need my dog bitten because your dog is stronger then you) but if I end up falling because your dog trips me I promise you that won’t go well for you.

Just move! Step off the trail when people are passing. Move your dog away and keep everyone safe. If your dog sucks (which really just means you suck) it is your responsibility to move, no matter what trail etiquette says at that point.

I was crushing (ha!) a downhill the other day and had to stop dead in my tracks as a woman and her daughter grabbed there dog to put it on leash (frantically I may add). Ok, fine, you made a poor choice having your poorly behaved dog off leash. Now why OH WHY did you need to stand in the middle of the trail to get your dog on the leash? Why could you not scoot off the trail and handle your business. Why did my dog and I have to wait while you handled your stupidity? Even better was you then decided to continue walking (not just letting me pass politely) and allowed your dog to pull toward mine repeating “oh you just want to say hi don’t you”. NO! I am RUNNING.  See, RUNNING HERE! My dog is doing work and does not stop to “say hi” while we are running. My dog will bite your dog though if she feels I am threaten, good plan there.

Look, I get mistakes, but there are way too many terrible dog owners. It’s not cute or funny that your dog doesn’t listen, it’s being a terrible owner. I refuse to be polite to these people, I mostly just ignore and go about my run. When my children are involved there is a chance I will be downright rude if your dog comes running toward us. Deal with it. My children are taught to lie to people when they are walking/running with Piper and I’m not around (I let them lie to adults!?!?). No our dog is not friendly, don’t come near me she will bite you, and ALWAYS over react when Piper becomes interested in someone like she really wants to kill them. Will she bite someone? Maybe. Early in my pregnancy she began growling at men she didn’t like on the trail. She is a wonderful dog, but part of her job is protecting. She doesn’t need random people petting her as she works and the kids need to feel like she is there to care for them, not make other people happy.

In conclusion, just stay out of the pregnant angry lady’s way with your crappy dog, but maybe you should just stop sucking as an owner.

And now my adorable well behaved Piper! (well mostly well behaved…)

 

 

Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

34 weeks?

Where has the time gone?! I feel moments of “damn am I done yet?!” And moments of extreme terror “can this baby stay in forever?!?!” All my Littles are more then ready to meet their new brother or sister, and we do have 2 outfits… soooo… what else do we need?

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Boy or girl? What’s your guess??

Running?

Yup, I’m still at it. Sloooooow goes it with moments of abrupt stops, hands on knees, and very loud “FUUUUUCK”‘s. It happens. There is very clearly a head down low which causes some interesting pains at times, but it’s very well worth it. My golden miles are usually 4-6, I feel great and can really run! But well… then things get interesting…

Strava’s Monday-Sunday just seems silly at this point. I decided to count my weekly miles in my pregnant weeks. Thursday, the first day at 34 weeks, I ran 7 miles and yesterday I did 3.9. By next Wednesday I will have my 30 miles for the week, no matter how slow those miles may be.

What’s funny about “slow” is I love encouraging new runners. My mantra of “it doesn’t matter how fast you are, lets enjoy the view” I really do believe. But I suppose its always harder to look at  yourself and be patient. Everyone I have ever run with and walked happily with up each hill, I loved it. I really do believe being a “runner” is a mindset and no matter how fast (or slow) you move you are still a runner, I promise to try and be more patient with myself as I have done with so many other.

Strength-

I feel like there is a huge misunderstanding with the outward and public strength I show. My “it’s ok” “just a moment in life” and “i’ve got this” stand is true, but that does NOT mean I am OK with the situation. I do not have a choice but to continue to move forward and handle my life. I do not have the luxury (or misfortune) of being able to avoid responsibilities. I can’t run around (ha, run) and pretend I’m not about to have a new little human. I am a Mom. When I tell you “I’m good, I’ve got this” I really do, but that does not justify or gloss over the behavior of others.

But really, I’ve got this 🙂

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These legs get extra love… or freezing pools..

Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

I Hate Stupid Girls!

I am so over stupid girls! Those girls that do everything they can to make themselves victims and then don’t understand at all when bad things happen. Where is personal responsibility today???

You’ve seen them, maybe you are one, running down the road hat with the brim pulled down (because sun is terrible) and 2 ear buds in jamming to their music. Yup, who needs any of their senses?! I mean, I know I don’t want to be able to hear if someone is running up behind me (I LOVE when you jump as I run past you) or see that person hiding behind the bushes. Really? Senses are overrated.

What about that one on the trails? Sunglasses, music, paying no attention to what animals might be around them. Look, I like to jam too, but I rock the one ear bud. I like being able to hear people around me, know when someone is coming, hear a rattlesnake!?? I mean seriously, no senses means you are a victim.

I have always taken myself out of uncomfortable situations (when I am not impaired by drugs or alcohol and can make a intelligent decision). Recently I read “The Gift of Fear” which really reiterated how important trusting yourself is, especially as a woman. From a young age we are taught to not trust our instincts and instead be nice to everyone, even when it feels wrong. Think about ever time you were told to hug a family member but just didn’t want to, sit on Santa’s lap but it made you uncomfortable, or say thank you to a seemingly kind stranger despite them giving you the creeps. Every time that happens it takes a little bit of your safety alarm away. Eventually you do not have it anymore and put yourself in situations that could become dangerous. If your parents had not forced these things upon you, would you still make the same choices?

Now don’t get me wrong, I do not believe we should be afraid of everything. I do believe women especially should choose to be intelligent. Listen to music with one ear but listen to your surroundings with your other. Wear a hat or sunglasses, but you are taking away your field of vision, so scan around you often. Be smart, choose to not look like a victim so you are less likely to BE a victim.

Let’s talk about Strava. When you run the same route every Tuesday from work at 11am and post it online, how are you not a victim?! Maybe it hasn’t become an issue yet, but Craiglist wasn’t a venue for crime as soon as it started either. You can add an area of protection around your home or workplace so people can not pinpoint exactly where you live/work, but is that enough? If they know your car and generally where you are running from how hard would it be to find your house? Be cautious. Run different routes. Run at different times of the day. Make your Strava so you have to “approve” people and don’t approve people you don’t know.

I see it often with parents posting where their child goes to school on social media. It’s not an issue until it IS an issue, but be safe now. Later posts are better, not a “out on the trail right here dying” posts to give someone an opening. Don’t wreck yourself out there on the trail so you couldn’t run away if you needed to. Ladies, be smart. Let’s stop making women look bad and start taking car of ourselves.

 

Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Mama Bear in me.

Tajh is my oldest son. For 12 years now he has been a complete individual, all my kids are but he really takes the cake. He loves animals, has for as long as I can remember. He is kind, gentle, always wants everyone to get along (well usually…). Tajh is the kind of kid that coombya and drum circles are there for. He has a the spirit of nature and does not concern himself with other people’s judgment.  I do not cut my boy’s hair until they are 2. At that point I start cutting myself, shaving it, giving them a mohawk, or just letting it grow. For over 3 years now Tajh has decided to let it grow. I remember another Mom telling me a story of how her son and Tajh got called girls by a woman. While her son took issue, Tajh shrugged it off. He always does. Sometimes he rolls with it while his siblings (or myself) correct the ignorant person. Yes, if you call my 12-year-old son a girl, you are ignorant. His hair is unkept, dreading on it’s on, he wears “boy” clothes, nothing says girl… Well other than the extremely unreliable “long hair means girl” opinion.

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I’ve wanted Tajh to cut his hair for a long time. He doesn’t take care of it and having to comb out the mats is a pain. At one point we discussed dreads,  but there is so much upkeep and he just isn’t willing to do it. Sometimes I try bribing him to cut it, but in the end I know its his hair and he can do as he pleases. My wanting him to cut his hair has everything to do with my desire for something easier, not because of how he looks or my concern for what others think of him.

At Disneyland Tajh became weird about going to the bathroom. Asking to go then saying he didn’t have to. Asking many times to go, going and then asking to go again. Clearly this raised a red flag. He didn’t want to speak about it but eventually he filled me in…

Tajh entered the mens restroom.

Adult Male “You shouldn’t be in here, you’re a girl”

Tajh “No I’m a boy”

Adult Douchebag “No, you’re a girl”

Tajh “No, I’m not.”

And that was it. That small exchange with the slime of the earth has my son uncomfortable going into the mens restroom for the rest of the day and wanting to cut his hair.

To that piece of shit worthless human being: You are lucky my son did not tell me she I could have found you. I always make the joke, I’m a fighter, not a lover, but boy is that true. Not only would there have been no way of keeping me from murdering you with my bare hands, I would have ruined your life. Attacking a young boy in the restroom? You are not worth anything. You do not deserve to live. That’s right, I said it. YOU and all conservative, know-it-all, angry, hateful, worthless, brainless, deplorable human being. You are the reason our world sucks for tweens and teens who are different. How dare you take you own views of the shitty world you want to live in and put them off on my child.

Sitting back and thinking about it my children do live in a fairly “safe world”. They all go to private schools that are very welcoming to being yourself. They live in the ultra world where all adults are a little “off”. Being an individual in our world is the norm… So yes when we head into the norm of society this is what we have to deal with… I failed as a mother to prepare them better I suppose. Most times he has dealt with the judgement from others well, I think this time the idea that he was alone in a restroom must have been scary.

So my response to Tajh “people are terrible. There are stupid people in the world and when you come across them you are welcome to treat them just as terribly as you need to. You should have told him to ‘go fuck’ himself and come and told me.” Look, normally I’m all about kill them with kindness, but some people just don’t deserve that.

So to the asshole who was a piece of shit to my son, please next time you say something terrible and ignorant to a child let me be standing right there to handle you myself.

And to my kids- Continue to be yourself. Those that matter will always love and support you.

My boy….

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Categories: Parenting | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Little People Running

Lots of new people coming to view our story, so stoked! Thank you to all those people out there for the wonderful encouragement you are giving my family, I truly appreciate it. It’s still a rough go over here getting the kids out to put in the miles they need, Tea especially. She gets so upset when she isn’t putting in the miles she needs. With a 55k on the horizon my girl knows what she “should” be doing to get it done. But to be truthful, it’s hard when they are only with me half the time. Even if we ran ever day they are here (which we can’t with this “life” and activities we have going on) it still would not be as much running as she wants to be doing. Sigh…. BUT An AMAZING running friend was so sweet and gifted Tea some sweet knew Ivivva outfits which was a HUGE pick me up for my girl! I can not even explain how much I love our loving community and how thankful I am that my children are loved. Pictures?

Sometimes an 8-year-old runs...

Sometimes an 8-year-old runs…

Sometimes and 8-year-old throws a fit because he didn't want to run "here"....

Sometimes and 8-year-old throws a fit because he didn’t want to run “here”….

Speed!

Speed!

Running Buddies.

Running Buddies.

That hair.

That hair.

And into the sun we go.

And into the sun we go.

While sister, runs we play!

While sister, runs we play!

Days spent in the desert are exhausting.

Days spent in the desert are exhausting.

If you follow us on Instagram you may have noticed the “home” pictures looking a little different… Well, we moved! Stayed tuned for a Vlog home tour on our Youtube channel! It’s a wild ride here at our new place…..

Cacti in the tummy. Not fun.

Cacti in the tummy. Not fun.

Thank you again to all our friends out there! Love from Seven Wild and Free!

Categories: Parenting, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Across the Years

I know I say it all the time, but my kids are amazing. Going into Across the Years they all had different goals, the littlest Littles mostly just being excited for cookies. Tea had hopes of finishing 100 miles in less then 72 hours since she “played too much” ( her words) last year. So I settled in to help as I could and roll with whatever happened.

Tea finished 25 the first day and was a little upset with herself. She wasn’t focused and when I broke down the numbers she was upset with herself. With a promise from me to help push her more the next couple of days she was able to sleep well that first night. The next day the goal was rough, 40 miles. I knew I had to call in reinforcements to help her along the way. My poor sisters boyfriend got roped in and ran more miles (and more time) then he ever had before. Fifteen miles with a 9-year-old that was in pure heaven watching him suffer! She can be a little evil at times… Tea joined other friends along the course and we even did a family loop. She stopped at 39 for the day knowing she had one more big day ahead…. 36 miles before dark. While most of the finally day she cruised with big people friends (thank you all for the help!), at times she was alone and that was rough. I was able to join her for the last couple and we held on to each other while we walked through the cold evening. She wanted to be finished so badly at miles 97 and 98 (who doesn’t) and there were tears. The morning was not an option for her to finish (I didn’t have them in the morning) so we had to keep pushing on if she wanted to finish. She sat before her last loop and suddenly she was alive! Tajh and +1 joined us on the last loop and Tea spent time making fun of them both and slapping Tajh with her long sleeves, because at mile 99 you can hit your brother as long as you are both laughing! And she finished. 100 miles in 61 hours and 45 minutes WITH at least 18 hours of sleeping. This girl… How awesome is she? Her goofy “100 mile I’m a crazy little girl” attitude always makes me smile. She pushed through the rough moments and as always finished with a smile on her face. True badass.

Waking up in the cold on day 2. No one was happy to leave the tent!

Waking up in the cold on day 2. No one was happy to leave the tent!

"hey Tea I'm going to take a bathroom selfie" "NO" I win!

“hey Tea I’m going to take a bathroom selfie” “NO” I win!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Getting a normal picture of a 9-year-old hopped up on a 100 mile high is just never going to happen.

Getting a normal picture of a 9-year-old hopped up on a 100 mile high is just never going to happen.

 

Little Tay loves being free to run off into the desert at this race. The kids found the perfect area and had their own little fort. They were gone doing their thing and every so often came in to get food and run a lap. He had no real goal along the way, but when he realized a 50k was possible over the 72 hours he got a little more serious. He’s my fast kid and has just recently started showing interest in racing. His little feet were pounded and painful, but every now and then he set out to add some miles.  I’m somewhat sad I did have a GPS on him to know how many extra miles he did while playing! My very proud Little Buddy finished his first 50k in 3 days (And he may have eaten more then his fair share of cookies along the way).

Crazy Boys at night!

Crazy Boys at night!

Tenny wanted to race, she wanted to go alone on loops from the get go! She ran with whoever she could each day (never enough for her) and played the rest of the time. Cookies were exciting for her, but she probably would have ran just to run. Competition is a big motivator for her and she was happy to run ahead then stop and wait for Tru and I to catch up while doing hand stands in the grass. Tenny finished with 13 miles over the 3 days. A PR for her for sure.

Because you just have to hold hands before the start of your big race.

Because you just have to hold hands before the start of your big race.

So fast!

So fast!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finishing a loop with Tajh.

Finishing a loop with Tajh.

There may have been a little 6 day zombie shuffling going on...

There may have been a little 6 day zombie shuffling going on…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tru was stoked to run. If you remember, the last time he had a bib on the refused to move from the starting line and gave me a stern “NO” when I even suggested it. This was the perfect race for him, no pressure, no time he actually had to start, and all his siblings were out there somewhere. The race began and he was moving! and then he stopped, threw his hat, and yelled “NO”….. Thanks Tru. We walked that loop and he played the rest of the day. The next day he asked to run again and this time seemed much more motivated, he’s getting it! The final day we walked most the loop together but as we came into the finish he told me he wanted to run. I began trotting along and he stopped dead in his tracks, told me I wasn’t allowed to run, and sprinted to the finish. JERK! Fine, I let him win… Tru finished 3 miles, I’m very proud of my Little Bug.

Tantrums 1/4 mile in.

Tantrums 1/4 mile in.

He is lucky he is so cute!

He is lucky he is so cute!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some pretty cute sleepers cuddling for warmth!

Some pretty cute sleepers cuddling for warmth!

 

 

Tajh may have made me the most proud at the race. He told me he didn’t want to race and I offered having him help me with the Littles so I could be there for those that needed me. Surprisingly he agreed and even promised to run with some if they needed it. He was a great babysitter, I love watching him play with little Tenny and Tru and I know how special that time is for all of them. At some point Tru came up to me and I noticed cookie on his face… “hey buddy did you steal a cookie” “No Tajhie gave it to me”… umm…. Apparently, like any good babysitter, he was using cookies to get them to behave. Well played Tajh… well played… I couldn’t be angry and just asked that we slow down on the bribery for a while. While it warmed my heart to just see him play with his siblings, I was truly impressed with how caring he was to Tea. Multiple times he asked if he could run with her (to which she adamantly refused since apparently he talks too much as a pacer and only talks about minecraft) and on day 3 I kept finding him with food and drinks for her. I told him how proud I was and asked why he was trying to help her so much “well because I’ve run 100 miles over 6 days and know how much it hurt, I can’t imagine how much she hurts right now” AWWWW!! I am beyond proud of Tajh. His kind heart is hard to find some days, and his nose is always so deep in a book he can’t hear his siblings, but when he comes back to the real world I am thankful.

Little People running free.

Little People running free.

Between the pride in my heart, the long days with my Littles outside and their little rosy cheeks from days of sun, my world is pretty awesome. I do have to say how insanely excited I was to see so many kids out there. So many people telling us how my Little inspired theirs, so many kids pushing their limits with a smile on their face, how rad is that? To top it off getting to spend so much time with all our Big People friends? Man did my Littles and I have a great time!

Family Lap selfie.

Family Lap selfie.

All my Peeps.

All my Peeps.

Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Javelina with a Little Lady (again!)

For some reason this blog has been hard for me to write. I just haven’t decided where to go with it…. The truth is, Tea running was met with criticism to the race director just days after she finished. My awesome race community came to the rescue talking about how wonderful my Little Lady is. I can not thank you enough for loving my Lady. But to the critiques wondering why a 9-year-old is running a 100k and the race director is allowing it, do your research said “9-year-old”  happens to live with said “race director”… funny how that works…

 

But enough about that, she is qualified. Well, maybe not this year. The amount of 9-year-old little girl tantrums we had was pretty special.  No not about computer time, her phone being taken away (she doesn’t have one), or not being able to go to the mall, all tantrums were about the time she spend training. She was disappointed. We went on runs and she cried. She knew that she was nowhere near ready, and I spent time trying to tell her it was ok it really wasn’t her fault (and may have spent a lot of money at Ivivva trying to convince her the right outfit would help). The reality is she only ran when she was with me, and I was too broken to run so she had to run with +1 (which she actually likes, he listens well 🙂 ). So training was nowhere near where it was last year and she knew it was going to hurt.

We both did practice napping...

We both did practice napping…

We are very good at napping training....

We are very good at napping training….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our last run together was suppose to be 10 miles but turned into a pathetic 6 with the complaining and commiserating we both did. But whatever, we both knew we were in for pain (me feeling super broken and wondering when I would have to call in a replacement “run 100k with a Little Lady”) and we stepped to the starting line.

The cutest runner out there! And rocking her Run Steep and Ivivva gear!

The cutest runner out there! And rocking her Run Steep and Ivivva gear!

And by step to the starting line I mean fumbled to grab our stuff (put clothing on) and watch the 100milers start. Tea loves her ultra peeps and was really excited to see Catra (who isn’t!). So we watched them leave and got our shit together. Nathan’s happens to make bottles that are great for her little hands so I bought her an extra (if you don’t carry enough water at Javelina you are screwing your race) and I carried two bottle too. And we were off… off to pain… off to an adventure together… off to our second buckle together.

The first loop went fine. Nothing notable really, Tea was just excited to see friends out there but was somewhat disappointed at how slow we were. We came into headquarters and +1 had my pack ready. Knowing we would be out there in the heat of the day a pack was necessary as a “just in case”. We took a minute and off we went again, pretty much alone. You know, many people thought the trail was going to be crowded, maybe even I did a little, but Tea and I went for long stretched not seeing anyone even on this loop. You know who we did see?

We could be friends with this guy, at a distance...

We could be friends with this guy, at a distance…

 

 

Our first rattle snake out on the trail. “Gosh” I thought “good thing we got that out of the way”. And on we went… Now the faster people are coming at us. Going counterclockwise is not our favorite so we vowed to walk as much as we wanted and to not feel bad about it. We picked up the pace a little and started to scoot over for a fast guy coming our way when he gave a “OH SHIT” and JUMPED! It took a minute to see it, and then we heard it! This guy was hidden well!

NOT a friends!

NOT a friends!

 

Afraid that he wasn’t going to move out of the way and someone might catch him in a bad mood we waited for a couple minutes warning people “Big circle people!” until our not so friend left. We were warned about a snake ahead 2 other times but only saw these two. Apparently they wanted to party in the desert too.

 

It was about this time that I started to have a “oh shit that hurts” moment but we were running with a friend so I didn’t mention it. A little while after Jackass Tea and I stepped off the trail to talk “hey Hunny, my ass really hurts” “Mine too Mommy” ummm…. Neither of us have ever dealt with ass chafing before and this Momma was not prepared! Of course vaseline didn’t help, I knew it wouldn’t … (oops) and so we were in pain. The awesome “hey Mommy it looks like you peed you pants” comment she made earlier (isn’t she sweet?)  is telling me it might be a little more humid out then I had planned for. We ran into Jean Ho who kindly shared something with us (totally can’t remember the name!) but I think we were to far beyond repare at this point.  Hobble in to finish the silly second loop is what we did, both thinking and not mentioning to each other that if we couldn’t fix this we were done.

As we ran in to headquarters I saw the always amazing Angela Shartel “I have a question” I yelled and she joins us trotting in. “Umm… we need desitin, do you have any?” “Hold on I’ll find something!” Yup, just like superwoman! Over she comes with some RunGoo and I give Tea some first “Oh my goodness Mommy, it feels better already!”. Angela saves the day!

 

Food, warm clothes (last year we were freezing so we were over prepared this year), and off we head into the impending darkness. Tea wanted to hold off on caffeine until it was dark but she decided to try some coffee before this loop, not a fan, caffeinated gels it is, This loop was just going to be a long walk with Tea reminding me how close she was to her crash time along the way and we were already close. But we made it to Jackass, the most welcoming party you can ever come across in the desert in the dark!

Together we aren't afraid of the dark!

Together we aren’t afraid of the dark!

We helped a couple friends off the trail to safety.

We helped a couple friends off the trail to safety.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walking out of Jackass (Jackbutt as Tea calls it) lead way to both of us complaining. Without saying too much, Tea was unhappy. So now in the middle of the night walking with my daughter we both cried, a lot. I always talk about how amazing it is sharing a journey like this with your little person and the deep bond it creates, conversations it spurs, and insight into their world you get. It’s eye opening, but sometimes it hurts. Tea shared with me memories of the past that you wish your child never was to be privy to. It reiterated the failure I felt in my ability to protect my Littles. So we hugged, walked, cried, and talked about how thankful we are for times like these, out on the trial, just us, free from the world and able to share honestly and openly.

All we could say as we finished are 3rd loop was “BED”. And we slept.

Up at 4 (somethingish) and moving by 4:45, time to finish this! What made this loop special was seeing all the 100 milers on their last loop. Last year we were so late in the race we hardly saw anyone. This year the smiles, high fives, and hugs really made it special. Yes it was a lot of walking, but the day could not have been more beautiful and the people as well. The best part of a race with Tea is by far the finish. Watching her decide our run/walk schedule, making deals with herself along the way, and then her always strong finish! All smiles of course.

Running to the finish! Thanks for the photo Jess Soco.

Running to the finish! Thanks for the photo Jess Soco.

 

We finish, my Mom drops all the kids off with me, and now I’m Mommy to 5 who just finished a super long 100k adventure and just really wants a nap! Apparently none of my little people did though….

Attacking Uncle J LU. He doesn't stand a chance.

Attacking Uncle J LU. He doesn’t stand a chance.

And finding adorable little friends.

And finding adorable little friends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have to say thank you to everyone out there who stopped to tell little Tea how amazing she was. Your stories of how she inspired you really touch my heart. Thank you to my Ultra Family for loving my Little Lady and seeing how strong she is!

As always Javelina was an amazing event (not that I’m bias). Great volunteers, great friends, and a great party! I count myself a very lucky Mother to be able to share all this with my wonderful daughter.

At the after party. Poor Tea didn't ant to leave and tried so hard to keep herself awake!

At the after party. Poor Tea didn’t ant to leave and tried so hard to keep herself awake!

 

 

 

Categories: Adventures with Littles | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Running with Little People. Bear Creek Trail

If you have never had the opportunity to run with my Little People, I’m sorry! They are by far some of the funniest running partners you can find. They had the opportunity to play with a GoPro on their run on the Bear Creek Trail the other day. As you can see, they enjoyed it! Tajh spend the next day editing and I promised I would share with the world!  (Do not blame me if you get motion sickness! These kids are not pros… yet…)

Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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