Sami woman on skis, adapted from Olaus Magnus, 1883 (an excellent skiing goddess I found on Wikipedia).
When Things Don’t Click
Having reduced my cold to a pesky cough, I returned to Sewall woods a few days ago. We’d gotten a few inches of snow, and remembering my beautiful ski from a week ago, I decided to head out for a repeat. I took the borrowed woodies and some purple wax and headed out into the sunny afternoon. Twenty feet into the trees, I was navigating around roots and rocks, but I figured the conditions would improve further on. There is zero logic to that assumption, other than my eagerness to be on skis in the woods, and it took well over an hour for me to face the fact that the skiing conditions were terrible! For every few yards of skiing, I spent triple that time attempting to straddle rocks, herring bone up icy, muddy hills, and scoot over clusters of wet roots. The realization finally came when, after about an hour, a man (Scottish, I think, judging from his accent) and his dog easily strode by me on foot and quickly disappeared out of sight, offering on the way by, “not so great for skiing, is it?”. At that point, the aha moment arrived: I was having a terrible time. After another 15 minutes, I caught up to my fellow traveler, who was looking out over the river. He asked if I’d seen the immature eagle who can often be spotted soaring near that promontory. I never have but I hope to spot her in the future! After the walker disappeared up ahead, I continued to shuffle and slip toward the road. About a half mile from the trail’s end, I was trying to herring bone up a rocky hill and my rightfoot slipped right out of the ski. I looked down and a key part of the binding, the bail, had disappeared. I spend a half hour at dusk searching through the wet snow for a piece of metal the color of roots, with no luck. At that point, the temperature dropped, hail began to lightly fall, and I realized things were not clicking for me on this outing! The following day, I walked in with Ollie to have another look, but the binding has disappeared. I’ll head back out in the first thaw… Though I had no real use for it on this ridiculous afternoon, a friend recently turned me on to Endomondo. I purchased the $4.99 version of the app for my iphone, and I love it. It tracks your workouts–skiing, running, cycling and more–giving an accurate map, time and distance, as well as the option of sharing adventures with friends. Highly recommended!
Jimmy the Greek’s Frozen 4-Miler, 2013
Yesterday was my first race since getting nailed with this cold/flu business, and it felt great to get back in the groove. It was my second time running this 4-miler. The race is a lot of fun–it’s a pretty flat course, which arcs by the winterized amusement park and boardwalk. The race attracts an extreme range of runners—from national competitors and Olympic qualifiers to an 88-year-old man who ran the course in 53:36. Though I was aiming for something quicker (still pushing for seven-something miles!), I raced a 33:15, which earned me 6 out of 61 in my age group . Last year I placed 15 out of 53 in my age group with a 34:00. Progress, particularly considering the recent illness. In the picture above, Ollie is wishing me luck, and I’m looking pretty enthused. I ran the race with a group of friends, who pointed out that I looked pretty worked over near the finish line. They know this because they had all finished 5+ minutes before me, but kindly stuck around to cheer me on at the finish. Though I’d like to say I could work on my game face, I’m afraid at the end of every race, all I can think of is putting one foot in front of the other with as much forward momentum as possible! I usually look pretty miserable, but it’s temporary.
I haven’t signed up for anything in February or March, but I’d like to. Anyone know of a good upcoming New England race?