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Sunday, January 31, 2016

Thank You January

We made through the first month of 2016. I had a couple goals I really want  to make habits and I am on my way. I am working on eating healthier. This month Jack and I had a healthy smoothie 25 days out of 30. That's good. I keep it simple Spinach, pineapple, banana for now. I did add cherries for about a week. I feel healthier :)  Something has to change when it comes to my eating habits. I think slowly I am making life time changes.
I did lots of running and hiking and walking this month too. I really want to hike more with my kids and I we got out a couple times this month. That is a big deal when you have teenagers . So Thank you January for all your blessing. I can also say this was a thinking month. I spent a lot of time just writing down stuff in my journal. Some months I feel like there is a real need to write it feels so healing. On to The Love month. Here we go !!!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

A little bit of today

This entire day felt just like that movie. The one I can't shake. Sometimes it feels like I am just standing here watching the whole thing play out but other times I know I am the one that is driving and taking everyone along for the ride. It's funny how today will simply be a memory . I want to hold it in my hand and never let go but children are that perfect reminder that everything changes and everything is only temporary. It is up to me to take bits and pieces from each day and put them away in that special place in my heart. These memories feel like a movie. 

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

A sweet day for three

Today was a great day. I went down to visit my family and then   my dad went for a really long walk with little man. Spending time outside makes all of us happy. We walked for a couple hours and I did not bring the stroller. Instead I brought a magnifying glass and little plastic bag. Then some crayons and a train. A couple things to keep him busy on our walk. He loved each little thing as I introduced them to him. The bag was a big hit. He put little things in it and then took them out.  Walking with a 2 year old requires a little imagination but its so much fun. You have to have lots of snacks too. Food makes everyone happy.  

Reminiscing

                    Yesterday I ran late in the evening. I did not think about the fact that maybe I should take my head lamp. I did not even think about the fact that it was dark out side but off I went anyway. I was hoping to run for a little bit over an hour or so. The thought that filled my head was wow if I did not run I would be inside of my house and I would be missing this amazon night. It was  beautiful. The sky was a deep blue and the air was just a bit cold. There is a lot of traffic by my house but I put in my head phones and a little Bob Marley and I was instantly transported away. I ran to the hills by my house and did not think twice about how dark it was and that maybe I should stick to the side walk instead I ran up the hill into the mountains just thinking I need this movement I want the solitude and good all of this was.
Two miles later I took this picture and realized I needed to get home and down from this mountain so I turned on my phone light. Thank God for iPhone and I slowly made it back. I was fine I did freak myself out a little bit just because it got so dark so fast. I did not tell my family where I was running. (not smart ) I was thinking on my way through the rocks and mud and hills about my only other night time run during the San Diego 100 miler. How well it was marked and how I could use some of those marking now. I was thinking about the SD 100 race director and all the time effort it takes to run a race. How much work goes into pulling of a perfect event and how much confidence and joy they give us by making it safe and feeding us and the volunteers how amazing they are. I will always remember this lady Karen holding my face during SD100 and looking in my eyes and telling me I believe in you Gloria . You can do this. That's all I needed to hear and I needed that. When don't we need that. I made a couple a stupid choices last night but I had a great time running and hiking and reminiscing..

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Balance

This is my sister Carmen. I used to visit her all the time but I don't anymore and I need to. It is one of those things I know I need to do but I just don't. This last month I have been feeling this big restless. Like the universe is talking to me.   A huge part of me feels like I need to grow and change and be nicer to myself.  I am going to visit my sister tomorrow. I miss her and I know she misses me. I am going to see my grandmother with Jack and hope that brings me some peace. I have mail I need to send out to very special people. I love sending happy mail packages. I need to figure out how to find more balance in my life. I have been completely obsessed with running lately and I need to think about some thing else too. Ahhhh this is a weird post I know but I feel like I just need to share. Sometimes we get lost or swallowed into our passions but there is hope. I feel like first you need to be aware that you are being obsessive then make a plan to change. My plan is to spend time doing other things. I am still running but for the next couple weeks I will be writing about other stuff. Why because I need to create a bit more balance in my life… I need to give back. Tomorrow I will start. 

Monday, January 25, 2016

Sunday, January 24, 2016

A quick update

This week was weird. I was all over the place . I did have a couple of awesome runs.
 This one is quickly becoming my favorite. The first 3 miles are a killer. My calves felt like they were going to burn off but that's the beauty of running eventually the burning sensation goes away and I was left with my heavy breathing and lots of up hill to go. My favorite thing about this run is how hard it is because eventually if I just keep working hard and showing up it will get easier. I love that. What a beautiful place to run. I think we ran to the top of the hill in the middle of the picture. There pockets of cold air on this run. The only other time I have run through pockets of cold and hot air was during the San Diego 100 miler. So this run takes me back in time.

 My official training started this week for W.S. That is exciting. It is always super exciting to have a training schedule (yes)  but way more exciting that this schedule is for W.S. (CRAZY)  if you ask me. 

Friday, January 15, 2016

Ultra Ramblings on not giving up

"You see those tiny switch back way in the back ? " Robert asked me. "no" I replied feeling really grateful I did not have my glasses with me and grateful we stopped for a second so I could catch my breath. This whole training thing is not easy and some runs just hurt more than others.   This week we ran on a Thursday and I heard it would be a  hard up hill and an awesome fast down hill. You may thing I was excited for the fast down hill but that is what scares me the most. The up hills are hard but I am in control . The down hills if I ran them correctly would mean I would have to let go and in my mind probably fall and this is why  I needed to show up. If it scares me I need to practice.
The whole up hill run was great except I felt like my calves where on fire. I was singing Kings of Leon on my way up. Except my lyrics where. My calves are on fire over and over. After a while it went away and I felt good. Feeling good does not mean I was not struggling it means I was not hurting at all. 

I definitely feel all excited and giddy inside when I run . I feel like its a big event. I know it is a training run but I still feel like ," Hello G  how grateful are you ? to be here in the mountains getting your butt kicked with your friends," that was my brain. I feel incredible. I feel like I do when I take my kids to the mountains or a park. When my family goes out to really fun dinner and everyone is happy. I feel like Man this is special or when I get to go to a play. I feel so incredibly grateful for this day.

The view was amazing and this was the point where I thought OK its 7 miles up and then they told us oh no we still have a little bit to go..( my brain was yelling but you said 7 ) but i acted totally cool . On the way back Robert told me to lean forward into my run. I tried this and my down hill improved some. I keep telling myself I have to believe it for it to happen. So I keep envisioning myself crossing that finish line.
Here is what I learned if your scared to try something ..anything because your fear is failure . My advise is to take a deep breath show up and try. If you fail try again and use that failure to fuel your drive. It is such a great feeling to check something off that little gremlin in our head that tells us we can't. The truth is we can if we keep trying keep learning and keep showing up. We can do amazing things. Sometimes if your like me the only way to believe it is to conquer it. 

It started getting dark so we finished up as fast as we could.
 So until next time challenging run. You might win but I will be dammed if I don't show up. 

An outside kind of day

With all the rain we have been having lately there is snow about an hour from house.  That is a big deal when you live in San Diego. I did go on a couple runs this week that included SNOW sightings . I knew that I had to take Jack and my dad to see the snow.

We left early enough so we got to see a-lot of beautiful different skies in one day. The early morning sky was so chilly I think it was 42 degrees. We had hats and gloves ready and to be honest excited to have to wear. We take 20 to 30  minute hikes at a time. That seems to be about how long is fun for my awseome toddler. 
The Lake was frozen and it was so much fun to throw stick and see them fly to the other side of the lake. Jack insisted that he wanted to walk on the Lake so we stayed away as much as possible. You need to bring all your patience with you when you bring a 2 year old but if you take it slow it can be so rewarding. 


The sky was so blue and there is so much to see that when we are walking Jack will sit down and just look up. Those are the moments that I am reminded to take a deep breath and look around and some how I am filled with gratitude. This world id so freaking beautiful. 

I love these two. My dad and my youngest . Look at these smiles.

We walked for 3 miles all together. 

Then we had lunch. Two ham and cheese sandwiches and apples and cupcakes. It was so good and you know the view made it better. We spent most of the day outside and if you ask me that is a perfect day.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Training Stories and dreams that come true

These are pictures I really still can't believe I am in. I gave myself around 30 minutes today to just write down how I felt about last year. I honestly feel with my entire being like one of the luckiest girls ever. I know people say fallow your dreams but really how many times can we really do that. My big dreams were become a good artist and one day run an ultra. I knew about Western States but 100 miles seemed crazy 5 years ago. I remember talking to a friend I greatly admire years ago saying wouldn't it be amazing if one year we ran Western States and thinking I wonder how you train for that kind of race. Then thinking I could never do that. 

 Cuyamaca 100k. I must have watched every video on You -Tube and read every blog post I could find and I knew it was going to be really hard but my friend Becca says trust the training and I did and I finished. Yes, I was near  the back like really kinda close to the back but I still had plenty of time to spare. I finished and got my medal.


 This was a couple years ago. This was when Jeff finished his first 100 mile race and mike was his pacer. Lets see they both froze there but off because it was so cold and they did not have the proper jackets. They are both really thin. Jeff had tummy issues and couldn't eat for a long time. His wife stayed up all night crewing him and he kept running it. I drove to the finish line with my kids to see him finish and  when I saw him running toward that finish line after 30 hours of running that was it for me. I saw the look on his face and I was so  impressed and my heart filled with a huge ass amount of Joy for my best friend husband. I was was over joyed for Jeff and that he accomplished what he set out to do. I was also impressed that Mike would run over 40 miles for his friend . I thought that is a really giving thing to do. When I was driving home that day I thought to myself . I am going to run 100 miles. I want to do that one day.


Fast forward 3 years and a baby . I made it last year to my first 100 mile race. There is so much I feel when I write that. My life I feel has been enriched so much by running this last year. I feel like I have something that is mine. When you have 4 kids your life is mostly about taking care of your family. I love that but my oldest is 21 so lets just say I have been doing it for a long time right ? I feel like now I finally am having time to fallow my dream and I have someone that is totally supportive of that dream. I also found a group of people to train with that have been so patient and really good about training and super knowledgeable about what it takes to run 100 miles . How awesome is that.  Running 100 miles was crazy hard . I do not think my smile would of been that big had I known what was in store for me.
Jeff was my pacer. I wish I could give him an award for putting up with my crap all night. He was super supportive and just kept me going. I can say this … That was the longest night of my life. I am sure Jeff can say it was not the best night for him either. He got me through it and his wife crewed me. She brought me food and changed my clothes and was super supportive. Mike took care of Jack so I could run not only on this day but the last 6 months leading unto this race on Saturday and Sunday morning and he never made me feel bad about being gone. Everyone came together for me. 

 This was taken after I crossed the finish line. 31hours and 29 minutes I think or more I am not sure. I was crying because I felt so humbled and raw. I felt loved and tired and so proud that I somehow with the help of my friends I finished. I Gloria King finished my first 100 mile race and I was only about 20 minutes away from the cut off but I still did it. I accomplished one of the biggest dreams I could dream. Let me tell you running The SD 100 is no joke. You have to train for this distance if your anything like me you have to train and pray a lot. Dear God, Please let me finish under 32 hours please      and he did.  You know when I am at the  finish line looking around I got to say I did it. It was not pretty but I got it done.
 Then Jeff got into Western States last year. When I found out he git in I was in a parking lot at Hodges and he was running the The North Face 50 miler. I immediately called his wife I was so excited for him . She told me he was running and that she would let him know as soon as she could. I was so happy for him. He is a great super strong runner and I love his family. Then he asked if I would pace him but just let me say that I am sure I said hey if you don't find anyone I am free to pace you :)  He asked I aid yes and I was so lucky because he was nothing like me. I paced him the last 38 miles and he was strong never complained and just kept moving. Nothing like when he paced me. (poor guy) He finished and got his amazing bad ass buckle.
Then this year this year I had one ticket. I really did not think there was any chance I would get in. It takes people years right ? So here I was planning my next race so I could get another ticket and then boom… It happened I was chosen number 297. Only 3 numbers to go and I was picked. I am super excited and trying to figure out training. I am still in disbelief . I will writting all about what I am doing to get ready for this epic year of getting ready for a race I really did not even have the balls to really dream about but I did dream about a little . So here goes my official training starts this weekend.

Lake Cuyamaca

 When you hear there is snow an hour away you get in the car and drive to it. When you see it is only a little bit of snow you smile because you really don't have snow clothes and a little bit of snow when your 2 is better than no snow if you ask me.
 When I stood here taking this pictureI thought to myself this is mile 90 of the SD100. That felt really weird because at that time I was so tired and falling apart. I could see myself running or walking right where I stood. I had the best pacer who kept me going. ( Jeff H)

 Its always twice as fun with a 2 year old. Everything takes twice as long and there curiosity is so good for perspective. We see a lake they see an ocean. Everything is new and bigger than life.
I am so glad we got outside and took the time to jus walk and look at everything slowly. Yes, it was cold and yes he threw a little temper tantrum but it was still so worth it. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Let's go outside !

The excuses I used in the early morning so that I would not go out to run.
It might rain.
(it's raining )
Jack needs me
I am tired
I could always do it tomorrow
The reasons I told myself my excuses are crap.
I own a rain Jacket.
Jack could stay home with Mike
If I ran I would not be tired
I could always do it today.
Then there is what happened. I ended up running 2 miles with my puppy he was very happy. Then I brought him home and got 4 more miles in at this point its is still not raining. When I walk in the door Jack says me run too mommy.. so I put his shoes on and we go out for another two miles. Those where mostly walking and jumping in puddles but I am so glad I did not make excuses I got out with the dog and Jack and me. Everyone is happy. Lesson learned if I am making up an excuse not to run then I need to get outside and go for a run or walk. Why ?? because now I feel really good.
#optoutside

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

G's Gear Review

I thought it would be cool to write a post about all the gear I use when I run. G's gear review :)
There are so many awesome brands out there that are amazing that I thought I wold share what I use. Let me start by saying that I have been running for 12 years and that includes about 22 marathons and a bunch of different distance ultras. I am in no way fast I am a middle of the pack runner if your talking about 50 miles or less and a back of the pack runner for anything over 50 miles but I always finish happy for real. So the gear I use has to work well for a long ass time. My nutrition is something I am always working on. Today before a long run on the weekend I try and have a piece of toast with peanut butter on it and on my drive to the trail I eat half a banana. I used to drink coffee before long runs but I don't any more.
First thing is my pack .
The Nathan HPL #20 hydration vest  I love my pack it is super durable and my first one lasted 4 years. It fits my body type well and I like the water spout.
Cliff Energy Food   I tried having a couple of these at my last 50k and they really helped my tummy. I felt like I ate something with out having to chew. It was easy to swallow while I ran and I will keep these in my bag for sure.
Gu    I keep coming back to GU every 55 minutes and it does the job for me. The trick is to get used to it practice with whatever nutrition you choose on your training runs and its super important to eat eat while your out there. Nutrition is everything.
Tailwind 
This stuff is awesome. I use it but not all the time because I find after a while it makes me feel bloated but on really long runs I rather be bloated than tired so I drink it. It taste really good and they make it easy to pack because they sell really great little samples.
Carbo Pro Hydra C5 
I just bought some cargo pro I will let you know how it works for me. It is always nice to have options. The taste is really light I just need to use it. I think this friday I will try it out. 
Butt Balm  This stuff has kept me from chaffing many many times. I won't go run with out it. The other thing I really like is that for 20$ you get a really big container so I do not have to worry about running out for a while.
Nike Running Bra
I like the price and it works really well for me. There seems to be the dreaded chaffing that goes on with any bra and I have that with this one too. After trying almost every bra out there this one is the one I keep using. It washes and dries easy and it very durable.
North Face Running shorts 
I will eventually switch all my shorts to these. These are the first shorts that I find I can wear that are not compression shorts that I do not chaff in and they breath well. I run hot and these are great. I love the bright colors and you can usually find a great deal on them at the RACK. I find your selection is really good on line in the store its not nearly as good. I would definitely try these and for 20$ if you don't like them to run in you can just wear them around because there so cute on
R Gear Dry max
Socks. I feel like I am a sock junkie I do not have a favorite sock but if I had to pick it would be these in black heck white is fine too. I do love these socks and I treasure them. That means I always know where they are. I always have a new pair for race day and I flat dry them. Ok I guess I really like these socks.
Altras
Hokas 
Shoes are really personal but if your planning on putting on a-lot of miles I would recommend trying theses shoes out. Your feet will thank you.
Garmin 310XT 
I really like this Garmin. It will last you years it has a really long battery life and its simple to use. I wish Garmin would do a better job with the website but for the price this is a great watch.
Ultimate Direction Water Bottle 
I use mine all the time. I like this spout because its easy for me to drink when I run. Hydration is really important you need to drink water.
Kiss my Face sun screen 
I should wear it way more than I do. I like this brand because it last and it does not hurt my eyes. I does not smell funny either.
There you go my favorite gear I used in 2015 is all here. This is the stuff I could not run with out. I hope it helps . Have an awesome day and stay warm out there.



Sunday, January 3, 2016

Its a healthy thing

The weather report said it is going rain for three days so just in case I got out the door as early as I could. That's how today's run began. I drove to the trails and went out for two hours. It was a beautiful morning and I am so glad I got out of the house and had my me time. Here is one of the things about getting out . When I go work out at the gym I totally get that angst about showing up. I know its going to be hard and I also know that I am going to be very sore the next day but after I show up I feel so good even if I can't sit down. I feel good about myself. Feeling good about yourself is just a HEALTHY thing.  I know getting started can be hard but that should not stop you from going for it. If you don't start now then when ???             

It is the beginning of a new year that makes it a perfect time to try something new. Why not ?
It might feel like stepping off a cliff only to find solid ground beneath you.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Good News Saturday

 Its the second day of the year. January of 2016 is in full swing. We had a short run this morning 10 miles. My girlfriend has a big race coming up. The San Diego 50 miler. I am so excited for her. 
 Can you tell ? She has done all the proper training and she is already a strong runner so I know she is going to have a great race. This is one of the perks that comes with running with awesome people . I feel like we are all on the same team. I feel so lucky that I have friends I get to show up for because they dare to dream big. That translates to when my friends run I go cheer them on.
Going into the new year one of the goals I have is to keep my zeal for life going. Life can get boring if you let it and I admit I love to dream but that is part of what keeps me happy. Running gives me time to dream and almost all my runs include time to dream. Clear my mind,  let go of worries I just do not need to hold on too and my biggest thing is how incredibly grateful I feel for my life when I run. The distance does not matter and most of the time I do not know what my pace is but when I am done what I take with me is this Joy, gratitude and I get to feel good about myself because I got my work out in. Its a win win situation if you ask me. 

Keep your face always toward the sunshine and the shadows will fall behind you. Walt Whitman