The calm before the storm

I had the most satisfying run just now. I felt challenged, I felt free, I felt renewed, I felt levity. And that is saying something considering my body didn't actually feel that good. Today was the first (hopefully of many) trip to West Seattle Stadium to do a track workout. I haven't been doing track workouts really this year and I regret that. I feel like I have been logging lots of strong, challenging, diverse miles but no true track work, just road speed work. And I would like to keep my speed. Especially since lately I have been seriously mulling over the idea of making a real attempt at the 2012 Olympics in the marathon. Right now, I could qualify for trials, but getting to trials and get to the Olympics are two different things. You see the thing is, I don't know how good I could be at the marathon. At the point when I switched over to ultras, I was still improving dropping significant time off of each race. I mean, I ran a 2:52 marathon on a heavy training week, as a training race last year. I ran my marathon pace for an entire 50k! The idea tantalizes me, but at the same time I am not sure I want to give up my ultra ways. Its funny because I definitely train like a marathoner, but like to race like an ultrarunner.

I am young in this sport and so I think right now I am just going to continue to explore my options. I am training hard for WS100 to see if that is a distance I like. I know I love the road 100k and that is another (hopefully) option for the 2012 Olympics. I love to run, and I am very excited to explore my own potential. As I ran around the track today, completing 3x mile repeats, 2x400 and 2x200 I felt an incredibly sense of awe of what the body is capable of. I realized that I don't really have to make a decision or define myself as anything but "a runner". I don't discriminate. Every step is valid, whether it is 1k or 100m.

My new life is unfolding and for the first time in months instead of feeling trapped, without room to move or grow, without direction, stuck.... I feel like I have boundless potential and the sky is the limit.

Let the onslaught begin

Right now I am definitely sitting in the calm before the storm. Tomorrow I head off to Bend, OR to visit the brilliant Krissy. And then Monday hits and my "new" life starts with full force. While I have enjoyed a very low key work situation for a while, as of Monday I will truly become a very busy girl. Not only did I get the new more than part-time position at the library, but I also just yesterday took on another part-time gig at Seattle Running Company! That means I will have three jobs! I am so excited to be busy with work that I enjoy (and out of the house!). I love my new apartment and neighborhood and I love the challenges that lay ahead. I know that with three jobs, full time training and trying to still cook regularly, I am going to have my hands full. Thankfully, I am an organized person and have already establish a schedule to accommodate everything. I am sure there will be things that are left undone, things that have to be sacrificed, but ultimately for me, I needed this. Already the positive benefits are making themselves known and that is even before things truly get underway. It will be an adventure to say the least and frankly, I can't wait.

Ratatouille, the second

Two weeks ago Monday I made THIS recipe for my mom and boy was it good. So good that I made it again on Monday for myself and have been enjoying the leftovers all week. Ratatouille is a delicious, warming, comforting dish to make and can be served over polenta and greens, as in the recipe, over noodles, on salad, in a wrap. It is a great thing to have lots of leftovers, I made it on Monday and have enjoyed it several different ways since! In fact, it was so good as a leftover, I have a new found fondness for leftovers!