Vermont 100 Weekend In Pictures

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It was an incredible weekend of volunteering, new friends, time with the hubby and very little sleep. I met runners from around the world. Watching and talking to so many talented athletes has recharged my running. My dream has come more sharply into focus.
Wow.
A big shout out to my husband for working his butt off burning the midnight oil. After working a 7 hour shift directing traffic at Stage Road Aid Station, he worked the finish line til 5am. Yikes!
Another big shout out to the new grill master, Paul from Plattsburgh. Just keep showering, the grill smell will eventually fade.

Thanks for running with me,
Astrid

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A Blogoversary!

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Amazing! One year ago today, I posted my first vttrailgirl blog post!
I’m currently celebrating by icing my sliced leggies and reading a gift copy of Trail Runner.

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Sorry, I’m guessing you don’t care what my legs look like. But, Saw Grass is no joke. Here’s the proof! I actually celebrated by doing an easy 8 miler. I hadn’t planned on another run this weekend after Friday’s 14’er. I was pretty jazzed, though, for a celebratory run. It was so worth the near-ninety degrees and full humidity.
It was an awesome sweat fest. I loved it.
Some portions of the trails are completely overgrown. Hence, the grass fight. I lost. I covered my calves, but not the thighs. They look tough now. Oww.
I hardly get in two great runs back-to-back. Mostly ’cause I’m cooked for the week, except for smallish morning runs before work. When I have the right attitude, however, it doesn’t matter if my body is tired, running feels like pure bliss. Sometimes, running is truly 90% heart and 10% fitness.

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What a year it’s been. I spent a little time flipping through my posts for some perspective. I’m incredibly grateful to be running injury-free, have a supportive family and at having lost about 40 pounds. Not to mention the friends I’ve made, the new things I’ve tried via running (say, tackle a 50K) and adventures ive gone on. And I keep shaking my head at the audacity I had, at running a mere three miles, declaring to my husband “I’m gonna run a 100 miler someday”. I haven’t lost that dream a year later. It’s what caused me to document my adventures here, that crazy statement.
I definitely feel blessed and humbled. I’m looking forward to another year of trail running and blogging.
Here are some of my favorite shots from the past year.

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Any blogs I should check out?
Thanks for running & celebrating with this grateful girl,
Astrid

New (To Me) Trails

Whoops. Runners restart.

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Finally. I got out of my running box. New trails. Today is Long Run Friday. No racing this weekend, so a long-ish run is just the ticket. AND it’s been a month since I’ve had a Friday off for playtime!

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The West River Trail runs roughly along route 30 in Southern Vermont from South Londonderry to Brattleboro. It follows the West River on an abandoned railroad bed.

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I love my bread and butter trails. They are my staple running. But, I needed a destination run to get pumped up on this week. Notice what’s missing? Yeah, no rain! A first in months!

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I also needed to get a break from bush whacking.

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We ran out about seven miles, from South Derry, through Winhall campground, past Angel Falls. Hubby and I went to Ball Mountain Dam this past March. About a mile before that point, we turned around for a return seven.
I’ll blame the dog for keeping the mileage around 14. I’m still trying to keep the dog alive. Heat + many hours running= peeing-on-the-floor-and-bed. Poor girl. There’s the pill for that. So says the vet. For now, less than four hours is Aggie’s max trail time.

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The trail is mostly gravel and pine needles. And flat. I’m grateful the scenery is so extraordinary, cause the trail itself is fairly uneventful. I love hills. And there are some short stretches through more rugged terrain. The half mile lead up to Angel Falls is an up and down with real shade.

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We swam as much as we ran. I actually walked as much as I ran. I am not in as good shape for distance as I was in early May. My hip flexors are as tight as ever. I’m not sure how to alleviate this Any thoughts for strengthening them?
Nothing a little Aleve doesn’t fix, for now.
I’m incredibly grateful to run long today. I’ve been a little blue the last week. So much heat, even more humidity. And not enough work on the recovery portion of my life. I’ve started making the necessary adjustments. Now, to continue the forward momentum so I stay out of the bad neighborhood that is my head. Having some distance running in the mix helps soothe this busy brain.
I love the post run lazy afternoon. I realized on my run my Hokas are blown out. So, I spent a little while online while rolling around on the couch. I thought I’d order another pair or Stinson Evos until I read about the Mafate 3.

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They’re supposed to be wider in the toe box and more stable. Sold. My Stinson are incredibly stable, but way too narrow for my big footsies. Here goes. I’ll let you know how they are. SO EXCITED! I feel like a kid waiting for Christmas. They should arrive in time for my volunteering gig at the Vermont 100 next weekend.
My blogoversary is on the fourteenth. One whole year of vttrailgirl’ing. Any ideas for a way to celebrate?
Thanks for running with me,
Astrid

The Rain Can Stay, The Humidity Has Got To Go

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This is what a sunny day looks like. We do occasionally have them here in Vermont. We had the wettest June on record, with 15″ inches of rain.

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Most mornings, we have a brief interlude of sun before the usual afternoon deluge. I’ve been working a ton, so the rain isn’t unbearable. I run most mornings, catching a little Vitamin D before work.
The trails are swamp like. Beautiful, but steamy and thick with mud and bugs. Aggie could care less about the messy trails. She simply wants to play. I could do well to take a lesson from her.
I’ve been struggling with hip/groin pain. It’s not a deal-breaker, but a serious nuisance. I’ve been run/ walking more than I want. So, I foam roll. Okay, I SHOULD foam roll. I do ice. That’s the easy part. But, wait, rest? Naaaah. I’m much nicer when I run.

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Since my last post, I’ve done a twelve miler, two races and two respectable weeks of mileage. I’m so pleased with with all of it. The highlight was a five mile trail race Saturday I ran in 1:01:37. I took a full 14 minutes off my time from last year! It was a slippery mud fest. I’d
say half of the 150 racers took a spill in the slop. But, oh-what-fun! AND I was fast! Well, not fast, but fast for me! My friend’s kiddo calls me Fastrid. I accept. Better than the embarrassing Gastrid. Yes? Ha!

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I missed you guys. What’s new in your running world?
Astrid