Monday, February 24, 2014

9.5 Mile Heart Healthy Weekend - With a Bang!

We got a bit of meltdown which meant for some rainy, foggy, crappy days leading up to Lori's Heart Healthy Weekend.  But on Saturday morning, the skies were a brilliant blue, the temperature was 40 degrees and climbing and because of the meltdown, I knew I could actually get outside to participate.

My favorite things in this world are running and the beach.  I was able to combine the two as I set out on Saturday morning.  I decided to take a ride, park my car at our city beach, then run over to the nearby state parks, where I knew there would be very little traffic and plowed, paved areas where I could run... to the beach front there.  I set out wanting to run around 10K because I'm working on increasing the mileage of my Saturday long runs.

It's about 1.3 miles from the parking lot at the beach to the first park, Camp Harkness.  This is a park and facility that serves disabled people, but anyone is welcome to walk/run/stroll their beautiful grounds.  Here's my run:

I took off towards the actual campgrounds with the plan to run the loop around which would bring me past the beach and back to the connector to Harkness Memorial State Park. All fine and good until I came upon this:

This is in a part where normal vehicles are not allowed, however the maintenance trucks can get through here so I thought it probably was just this one spot. I decided to sort of tip-toe and get through this, and then I came upon this area where tip toeing wasn't going to help.  Because of the previous days' melting and refreezing, this was solid ice.

Alrighty then.  I turned around went back around to try going around the other way.  On the way, I passed the Equestrian Center.  In the spring and summer you see lots of horses and the campers get to ride them. So great!

The road was clear as far as I could see, so I took off.  Suddenly, another runner came from the direction I'd just been - he must have run into the ice bog too.  Look closely, he's wearing SHORTS.  People, it was not that warm and it was breezy!  We ended up passing each other several times throughout my run.  Great minds think alike when it comes to finding a safe place to run I guess.

The road looked clear as far as I could see and I was getting so excited about being able to run outside in the glorious sunshine.

Because I knew at the end of this road was THE BEACH!  I got to run to the beach!

Of course around the bend from the beach was the other side of that icy mess so I turned around to go back.  There is a beautiful huge house on Camp Harkness grounds.  Not sure what it's used for but what a view it has!

The geese like to wander around on the lawn.

I decided to cut out of Camp Harkness and make a short loop through Harkness Memorial State Park, the other part of the land bequeathed to the state by Edward Harkness.

I've always loved this house, which seems to be closed up.  Such a classic New England look and wouldn't it be fun to have a house with a porch like this?

I started my loop to run past the mansion, which can now be rented for weddings and parties.

As I looped back towards Camp Harkness, I  noticed an older gentleman get out of his car and begin to walk.  Guess what?  He was wearing shorts!  As I passed him I said, "Sir, I just have to ask, what is your threshold for shorts?"  He replied, "Oh around 32 degrees.  But don't you realize it's spring young lady? Those are robins in those trees!"  OK, I guess his definition of spring and mine are totally different lol!

I finished up my loop and headed back to the beach where my car was parked.  I can't even describe how deliriously happy I was... felt like my soul was waking up from a long winter's nap.  As I got about 1/3 mile away from my car, I was in the neighborhood sort of behind the beach.  It's a typical small beach community with narrow roads and a low speed limit.  I was running along and realized there was a car coming towards me and I could hear another car coming the opposite direction.  It was almost in slow motion as I realized neither car was going to yield, there was another car parked in the street, and there wasn't room for all of us... I was going to get hit!  Instinctively, I hopped over the snow bank towards the sidewalk. I felt myself start to lose balance and realized I'd jumped onto the ice I'd just been trying to avoid when I stepped OFF the sidewalk.  As I went down, my thoughts were "OH NO! My Garmin!  My phone!"  The next thing I knew, I was face down, flat on the ground with the breath knocked out of me.  I laid there a few seconds to assess and crawled forward on my stomach to get to pavement so I could stand up. Here is the scene of my demise:

I was shook up but nothing seemed to be broken, including my precious Garmin or phone, so I walked for a minute to clear my head.  I began to run and was nearly back to the car when I looked and saw these seagulls sitting on the ice in the cove. Silly birds don't you know how dangerous ice is?!

When I got home Mr. Helen looked me over and other than a bit of road rash and breaking every single fingernail on my left hand, I seemed to be OK.  We agreed I'd probably be sore on Sunday - and I was. My left side seemed to be the worst - my wrist, hand and knee were all a bit swollen and more sore than bruised.  Oddly enough my right shoulder is sore too.  So I probably thudded down on it after my left side made contact.

I decided I would take a walk to assess further and get some kinks out.  Ended up walking a bit over a 5K at a pretty good pace.  Probably my last outside exercise until next weekend.  Yeah, that's satisfaction on my face right there.

Once again, take that winter - and ice - you're not gonna beat me down!! 6.4 miles on Saturday; 3.17 miles on Sunday for a total of 9.5 miles. I'm happy to have been able to participate in Heart Healthy Weekend.


  1. This weekend was gorgeous! I wasn't wearing shorts on my run, but I did end up taking off my outer layer about mid way through my run....felt glorious to run in just a teeshirt!

    SO glad that you didn't get hurt (other than some road rash)!!!!!

  2. It's ridiculous how people leave their sidewalks sometimes.

    I love, love those farmhouses! They just ooze so much warmth :D

  3. I loved every word of this post Helen - you sound so happy! Sorry about the fall, but I guess it could have been worse! Hugs!

  4. Ouch about the fall. You are pretty brave to get out there with the ice and snow. I am getting the itch to start running again but the sidewalks and roads are way tooo icy here.

  5. Wow, how great that you got just a little bit of springtime there. ^$%$$@@# ice! I have slipped on it more often than I would like to admit! Glad you didn't break anything!

  6. What a beautiful run, although it's so strange to see snow at the beach! Does. not. compute. Jeff would be wearing shorts in that weather. He swears his legs never get cold. I swear he's an oddball. ;)

    Sorry about your fall!! That is painful, and usually the gift that keeps on giving for days afterward.

  7. Sorry to hear about your fall but girl what a great run. Such blue clear skies, I can totally understand why you loved it so much. And I loved it that you took so many pics, it's great to see where you run. I'm always interested in seeing where other people live.

    You inspire me to get out and run again too, it's been over a week since I ran. And I don't have the excuse of winter because it's almost Spring weather here, I'm just lazy.

    Well done on the run and walk and thanks for sharing!