Kiss on the ear and we LOVE those improvements but what about the plateaus?!

Yesterday’s workout went like this—>  1 mile w/u outside, 6 mile tempo at 6:49 average pace on the treadmill and 2 mile c/d outside.  I needed to be outside for a little bit to get in some fresh air.

But needed my treadmill to run the fast part.  Yeah, not going to be running fast on this stuff… while there were plenty of areas that were clear enough to run on, there were a bunch of spots like this below where I needed to walk.  When I am doing a tempo run, I do not want to stop (either to walk or because I fell) and the treadmill gives me that perfect opportunity.

Something I was thinking about after I finished my run this morning was the fact that plateaus are just a part of training.  I think I get SO excited about any and every improvement in my training (i.e. yesterday I kept patting myself on the back for increasing my tempo run by a mile and running it on average 2 seconds faster per mile compared to last week;) that I get hooked on that.  I get this expectation that improvements should ALWAYS be happening.  Like they are just a guarantee if we are putting in the work for our running.  But I am positive with each training cycle that I have ever done that I’m not always improving.  There are bumps along the weeks, there are setbacks and my linear graph that I would just love to go up forever has a few pauses in it, some curves down a bit and time when it is not going up.  I’m glad that I am reminding myself at the beginning of this training cycle about this fact of training life.

There are also ways to help us to break out of those plateaus: running more hills, running with faster people, allowing ourselves more rest days if our body’s are overtrained, sleeping more at night, eating more nutritiously (and making sure we are eating ENOUGH to fuel all of our running), adding more intense workouts, making sure we are truly running easy on our easy days etc.

While seeing all of the improvements in our training feels very good, just remember… if you are anything like me, there will be some bumps and flat spots along the way to race day.

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Brooke had a playdate yesterday and she was incredibly excited to get to see her friend.  But first, she wanted to kiss my ear before leaving.

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Lunch was a bowl with a sweet potato as the base and whatever else I could find to top it!

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Followed by an apple while typing!

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And then Brooke came home and we did the normal ‘pretend I am the mama dog and Brooke is the baby dog’ thing we do over here.

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After that Andrew went for a run!

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Andrew saw a few bald eagles yesterday while he was out on his run with Beretta.  That’s the thing about running… when else would he have been in the area he was looking up at the trees than when he was out for a run.  Running gets us out seeing things we wouldn’t normally see!

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Beretta is all about this winter running.  Andrew told me she wanted to jump in the river too ha!

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We got to work on dinner.

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Korean Beef Bowl for the win… it was so good!

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Brooke was pretty happy about her one pink hand and one purple hand.  The best of both worlds.

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I bet Beretta is happy that Brooke is into trying to dress up her stuffed animals instead of her…

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A quick trip to the library and we called it a night (well… Andrew and I did after 2.1 episodes of House).

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Who runs with their dog?  How does your dog feel about the winter?

What was your dinner last night?  Was it satisfying or still hungry for more?

What fruit do you eat most often?  What fruit do you wish you could eat most often?

Red meat… yay or nay?

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58 comments

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Wow–that’s a lot of ice! It was super cold here last week (a little snow on Friday), but it’s supposed to be 76 or something like that today. Gotta love Texas weather!

I had a chicken stir fry for dinner last night, and it definitely hit the spot. It was SO good and really easy to make, which is a plus for sure. And yes to red meat because I really love steak and cheeseburgers!

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Wish I had a doggy to run with! There’s just something extra fun about having a dog outside on a run or walk.

sigh, dinner was lame-ish last night because I had a late evening physio therapy and massage appt. Sweet potato and rice crackers with almond cream cheese and greens ontop, then followed by chocolate chips and peanut butter. I was satisfied but it wasn’t the most satisfying if that makes any sense!

not a meat eater but respect and appreciate those who do. I cook it for the carnivores in the family though!

Banana daily. Lately clementines. Love berries. Wish I could tolerate apples because you know, crunchy and juicy! Honey Crunch was my favorite followed by Fuji. I have an intolerance to sorbitol and fructose so choose my fruits wisely. It’s a pain (literally).

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I love running with my dog! She’s also a lab and always wants to jump in the water, even if it’s 0 degrees out. She loves the snow and cold..the only time she won’t go outside is if it’s raining out :)

I usually only eat fruit in smoothies, but I wish I could eat more mangos. They’re my absolute favorite fruit/food in general.

I’m vegan, so that would be a nay for red meat!

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I wish I had a dog to run with, but my cat is 9 years old and at this point I think he deserves to live his life stress free. I can’t imagine he would love if we introduced a dog into the house now when he’s been an only child for so long :). Someday I will have a dog… and then I will move to a cold weather state where it would not be considered torture to make my dog run with me! Down here not many people run with their dogs bc it’s always so hot and humid out.

I looooooooove a good mango! Is there anything better?!

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I made turkey chili in the crock pot on Monday and that’s what we had for dinner last night.
I eat apples practically daily until summer and then it’s all about nectarines and blackberries

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I know a lot of local friends run with their dogs through the winter. I don’t have a dog so…ha.

I like red meat a lot and I eat it at least 3-4X a week. I would rather eat red meat versus chicken or poultry.

That ice looks rough. Anything like that, I’m always inside LOL.

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I live in northern Indiana and run with my two goldens Riley & Coulson. In the winter time they like to make “snow angels” post run.

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Hahah no way! I want a picture of these snow angels that your pups make! That is AWESOME Cindy!

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Awesome job on the run!

My dinner last night was SO good. I’m in Minneapolis for work and met my friend for happy hour/appetizers at a place in Uptown called Burch. First thing – They give you the most amazing bread basket with delicious croissants. Second thing – All the apps are delicious! We got this butternut squash tart thing with goat cheese and then we got an order of schupfnudels (I had no idea what it was either … Google it … SO good!) with walnuts and gorgonzola.

And then I went on an 8 mile run this morning to undo the damage :)

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I probably eat apples the most but lately I haven’t wanted one! In the summer I am all about watermelon.

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Haha, I can bArely get my pug to finish a walk. She will seriously just lay down during a walk ;)

Dinner was a shrimp California Bowl at Rubios during a soft grand opening with free food!

I eat apples everyday but my absolutely favorite fruit is watermelon and mangos!

I much prefer chicken, shrimp, and fish over red meat.

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I never run with my dogs because they’re super disobedient on a leash. I’ve tried to work with them but there are too many people in my neighborhood that won’t keep their dogs leashed, and taking them means lots of drama and that very little actual running happens.
I love red meat but I try to buy grass-fed as often as possible. The fat is actually good for you, it tastes soooooo much better, and the animals are (generally) treated more humanely than factory farmed animals. :)

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I have a border collie/australian shepherd mix so suffice to say she was made for running :) She LOVES going out for winter runs…to the point she starts bouncing off the walls the minute she sees me walking around in running clothes, haha. I don’t think she’d be great running in the summer with the heat/humidity around here but winter is perfect.

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Oh I bet that running with you in the winter is the highlight of her day! I love that your dog can tell that she is going to get to go out on a run when she sees you in your running clothes!

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Last night’s dinner was chicken, vegetables and beetroot but I will definitely be trying that Korean beef bowl – where do you normally get your recipe ideas from? They always sound awesome! Also, do you follow a particular diet for when you do different runs?

I don’t really tend to each much fruit, I’m more of a vegetable type but I love melon, it’s one of my favorites!

I eat red meat once a week – I tend to stick to Chicken. I cook all my chicken at the beginning of the week and then add vegetables / carbs to it each evening although I love chilli!

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I run with my dog at least once a week! Riley loves winter running, especially if there’s snow he can run through! We won’t run him very far (or at all) if it’s below 20 degrees though because his paws get too cold!

I loooove red meat. I used to never ever eat it, then I started dating my boyfriend and reintroduced it into my diet. It’s crazy how much better it has made me feel. I have a lot more energy than I used to and I swear it’s helped me recovery faster from some of my harder workouts!

Awesome that Andrew saw a bald eagle yesterday! There’s one in my neighborhood too that I get very excited to see!

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My dog is the same! Ha. My friend who also has a dog insists that the dogs are “bred” for the cold. But my dog’s paws get cold :) After a quick walk when it is below 20 degrees, we come home and he sits and I take a wash cloth and run some warm water over it and wipe each paw… he is only slightly spoiled!

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We keep talking about buying those dog booties for him, but I have a feeling he’d be less than thrilled about them! Sounds like your pup has it made post-run!

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I tried them – he didn’t instantly like them but after a while he seemed much happier than without them. Was prancing along nicely. … and then they fell off no matter how tightly i did the velcro :)

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Favorite fruit at the moment is peaches with my oatmeal. Especially at night with the smallest scoop of ice cream on top! Just like Peach cobbler.

Curious…Do you follow any sort of structured nutrition plan? I am stuck in between needing enough fuel for my running goals and wanting to loose weight.

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I’ve got the exact same problem Lisa! I don’t want to under eat too much because I want to make sure I have enough to run but I also need to shift some weight. It’s such a difficult balance!

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YES YES YES… that is a hard balance to figure out! I do not follow a structured nutrition plan. For me personally, because of a disordered eating past, I stay as far away from structured eating as possible (I avoid triggers completely). I base my eating off of what I’m craving and when I’m hungry. I try not to think about it much. BUT I do know that if I’m under-eating then my running and recovery struggles big time! I feel like our body’s sense when we are not eating enough and go into starvation mode too and slows our metabolism way down because of the stress. Just my thoughts but goodness, it is hard to figure out the exact right balance.

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Also, a quick question :) When you do tempo runs, do you stop after each mile or did you run 6 miles straight?

What’s your best way to increase speed? I’m no where near your pace but I would love to speed up, I’m just not too sure how!

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Hey Lauren!! For tempo runs I run the entire workout (i.e. 6 miles yesterday) without stopping. For interval speed workouts I do jogging recoveries in between each interval! Yay for wanting to increase speed… you’ve GOT THIS!! Here is a post that I wrote with my top three recommendations and the comments have great tips too:
http://hungryrunnergirl.com/2017/01/three-things-that-i-think-helped-me-to-get-faster-and-i-dont-think-it-is-ever-going-to-stop-snowing.html
I also wrote this post a few years ago:
http://hungryrunnergirl.com/2012/02/how-to-become-a-faster-runner.html

Hills definitely help, speed work, CONSISTENCY is everything, strength training are another few. Races keep me motivated and push myself out of my comfort zone too! Keep me updated on how you are doing Lauren!

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Thank you, thank you, thank you!! I will check these out now :)

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Right now the fruit I eat most is blueberries. I’m not much of a lunch person; I get hungry but I can never think of anything I want. So lately I’ve been making a smoothie with 1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt, 1/4 avocado, a handful of baby spinach (stems cut off), and a cup of frozen blueberries. It looks disgusting but it tastes delicious. It’s a little sharp from the yogurt, but I like that.

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The fruit I eat most is apples. We have an orchard near my house and I LOVE it.

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My favorite fruit is any kind of berry – anything from cranberries to strawberries. I love them all!

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Red meat is totally a yay for me. I love it, it gives me so much energy and I really get the cravings for it.

My dinner last nigh was a cheese quesadilla, It was good but I think I was still hungry afterwards.

I wish I could eat Papaya more often. I don’t eat it because I’m too lazy on the work it takes for peeling it, and cutting it. Unfortunately, grocery stores don’t sell it ready to go as they do with other fruits.

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I used to run with my dogs, but they are nearly 12 and not nearly in shape now that we live in town and they can’t run free like in the country. So they gets walks instead of runs to avoid injury. Supper lastnight was tomato soup and grilled cheese. Fruit I eat most is probably banana’s and apples. What I would love to eat every day if I had access to it fresh, would be muskmelon, blueberries and strawberries. For every single meal. Red meat is definitely a yay for us. Not super frequently, but it’s a big yay when we have it. My husband works for Tyson, so chicken frequently visits our plates.

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Same icy roads where I am… okay for easy running, not great for speed! I did boot camp at 6am this morning so I got ready by eating my sweet potatoes and eggs for diner last night. Felt great (well, as great as boot camp can feel ha). I do run better (and function better in general) with a good amount of protein in my diet : lots of fish and seafood, chicken and red meat once or twice a week (I love a few bites of steak the night before my long run). And I love fruits with a passion! Banana before a run, berries with greek yogurt after, pears, peaches, apples, pineapples, name it, I love it ha

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THANK YOU for mentioning those plateaus! Sometimes I see runners on Insta talking every day about how every run was fabulous and they “Nailed it!” It can get frustrating. I ran a big race in November that didn’t go exactly as planned, and coming back has been kind of mentally tough more than physically. I’m coming out of it, but you’re right–running (just like LIFE) sure has its ups and downs. Just gotta keep the faith during the “downs” that the UPS will be there, too :)

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You are so not alone Jen! I totally understand! I am so sorry about your race in November not going well but I am sure that you learned so much and you are just getting more physically and mentally strong along the way! I feel like I have about 3 not so great races where I don’t meet my goals for every 1 great race:) If you ever need that reminder… I’m here for ya! Yep, running is just like life, a nice mix of ups and downs and those downs make you appreciate all of the ups even more!

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I’m just really glad to find out that my 4 year old daughter isn’t alone in pretending to be a dog….All. The. Time. <3

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HAHAH our kids would be the best of friends!

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My four year old son pretends to be a cat. He has a very high pitched meow and makes us address him as “neighbor cat.”

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I’m not really a dog person… however I would love one to go running with! I’ve never seen a bald eagle in the wild so that’s really cool to just see them like that!

I don’t eat meat at all so… nope. ;)

Favorite fruits: pineapple, grapefruit, apples, and raspberries <3

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Dinner last night was quinoa with spaghetti sauce, spinach, mozzarella cheese, and chicken. Super good and satisfying!

Current favorite fruit? I eat bananas and apples almost daily, but I’m missing my watermelon :( #bringonsummer

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I used to run with my pup a couple times a week, but now that he is getting older, we just do walks together.
I had salmon and veggies last night for dinner… it hit the spot!
I love love love mango and pineapple.. they are by far my favorites.. don’t make me choose between those two though! :)

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I made that same Korean Beef for dinner last week for the first time! Delicious! It will be a regular in our house!

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Oh that makes me so so happy… yeah we are adding that to be a household staple too! I think I want to add some veggies to the mix next time too like zucchini. Let me know if you make any variations!

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Try broccoli florets – delicious!

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Oh and lean ground turkey works really well with this recipe instead of ground beef.

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Brilliant! We will be trying both broccoli florets and ground turkey next time! THANK YOU JO! Hope your Wednesday is a great one!

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I love running with my dog. He does pretty well on-leash if we stay in the middle of the road away from good-smelling things – ha! Needless to say on-leash is short and usually at the end of our walk for about a half mile. He is only 1 year old though so we practice a bit each day. He is awesome off-leash. There are a couple of legal off-leash places near me that are also good for running. My dog will run next to me, then go explore a bit and then come back to me. He is the best :)

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My dog is 10lb so running is out for her :) I’ve had to carry her many times after a long walk.

Red meat- more and more studies are tying it to chronic disease. I’ve decreased it from being a regular part of my diet to just an every now and then type thing. I won’t turn down a burger at a cookout or anything but I don’t really like to prepare it at home too much anymore.

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I love running with my dog! She’s a yellow lab mix with greyhound + a list of other breeds. She has very long legs and was meant to be outside. She loves walks, runs, hikes, anything to be outside. She also doesn’t mind being outside if it’s -1 or 100. Right now she’s looking at me wanting to go out for a walk. She’s very spoiled.
Last night I made chicken with sweet potatoes and asparagus, it was quite tasty and nice to get back on the making home dinners train.
I love honeycrisp apples. I tried them once at a farmers market and have been hooked ever since!
Love a good steak! although i don’t always incorporate it into my diet, I could never cut it out.

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Thank you for sharing that recipe–the website it’s from looks amazing! I can to make and eat everything on it :)

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RIGHT!?!? Seriously… such a gorgeous website and everything looks so good! Let me know what you make and what you think so we can copy you:)

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I don’t run with my little Pekingese — because he can’t keep up! He has little short legs and a short nose that makes it really hard for him. The few attempts I made resulted in my carrying him home like a baby.

Turkey Tacos were for supper last night! SO GOOD! So easy! and So satisfying! I make my own taco seasoning and prep all the veggies on the side early in the week/day so all I have to do around meal time is brown the ground turkey! :D YUM!

I eat bananas all the time!

And I love red meat!

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I run with my border collie Izzy – she sled dogs me for the first 10 minutes, but usually settles into my pace. And she is never tired! I don’t know what I’d do without her!

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Fruit I eat the most? Bananas unless it’s orange season. And then of course oranges.
Dinner? Last night we had French toast but made in a waffle iron and oranges and bacon. Tonight it’s creamy chicken mushroom and zuccini pasta. And they are both satisfying. Also doesn’t beef stew sound good?
Of course red meat. Just not everyday.
And I’m on a temporary unending dog hiatus. Ever since my kid was bit (and I mean bit) I just can’t look at dogs the same.

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Red meat is one of the polarizing foodstuffs. It’s there with coffee and red wine – it’s good for you, no, it’s not good for you. Eat Right for Your Type by Dr. D’Adamo has answers. Of course, it helps if the person clicking around D’Adamo’s Typebase knows their blood type and listens to their body. For some people, the cook in their home could be a different blood type and cooks for the cook – why not? If the cook likes it, everyone will (all the bodies will). Then, the people eating think they “should” like all of it.

The Typebase: http://www.dadamo.com/typebase4/typebase5/T5.pl?21 Oh, someone changed/ updated the Typebase and navigation is totally different now. After the link, click on How To under “Almonds” and there’s instructions. Oh, I have to figure this out!

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I love that beef bowl recipe! I usually make some extra sauce, lightly cook broccoli separately, then add it in with the meat and sauce before serving. So good!

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I have three basset hounds. The only way any of them are going for a run with me is if I’m pulling them in a wagon. :D

And it’s going to be -44 C with the windchill here tomorrow. I’m missing my outdoor runs but that’s just a little too cold.

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I love to run with my Dalmatian. He could go forever. We live in Florida so he doesn’t mind 75 degree winters. 😉

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We adopted our dog, Lucy, three years ago and she’s been my running partner ever since!! We guess she’s a foxhound/German Pointer so running is in her DNA. She can just go forever!! When I was training for my first marathon last spring, I took her with me on my first 18 miler (longest we had ever gone.) She probably ran 20 miles with all the smelling she had to do! By the time we came home, she wanted to play ball!! If only I could encapsulate her energy! She’s a bit of a wuss when it comes to this winter weather but with paw balm and a coat, she’s good to go!

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How cool that Andrew saw some bald eagles! I was standing by my kitchen window last winter and saw a beautiful bald eagle fly across our back yard. It was the first I’d ever seen in the wild here in northern Virginia. The following day, my husband and I saw it sitting in a tree behind our house eating a little bird or fish. We haven’t seen it since, but we do have a bunch of hawks living in our back yard.

My friend brings her dog with us on our runs sometimes during the winter. He’s such a good runner and stays in his lane and never cuts us off. He gets too hot in the summer to run with us.

I eat far more Honey Crisp apples than any other fruit! Yum!

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