and those 60 boxes?

well, there are more inside of the house than outside. But there’s still plenty of packing to be done. Which is exactly why I’m strategizing about how to tackle the remainder posting at this very minute.

Strategizing includes

  • signing up for this race
  • contemplating the first season of True Detective (yes, I’m late to the game), and wondering what I could possibly do to encourage Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson to work together forever and ever til death do them part.
  • hosting an ice cream social for my running club.

The moving van comes Wednesday. The young couple buying our house takes possession on Monday, and, if our lawyer ever gets back from vacation the planets align, we will take possession of our new one that same day. Not knowing how everything will pan out, we’ve arranged to stay in our current home until the movers come.  I’m hoping all the transaction stuff happens on Monday so that I can get into the new place and give it a good clean before all our stuff arrives. Chances are, though, that it won’t. Which only adds to the stress. Which has not been good to my waistline over the past month. Which has led to more running, but frankly, not that much enjoyment. I’m contemplating a short week long break, enough to make me miss it, before I ramp up for the 10 miler. Plus I gotta figure out some new routes near the new place.

That’s all for now.  The siren call of the boxes beckons.

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60 boxes appeared on my porch

and I’ve decided it’s a good time to add a blog post.

We’re in the throes of Real Estate Land. Inspections. Mortgage commitments. Favors (for access to the house) granted to our buyers. Lots of document reading. Lots of dreaming. Lots of purging.

Some of the good things: finding kids’ art projects that I forgot existed.  The benefit to having lived in the same small school district for so long–art projects remain fairly consistent. I’m going to have some amazing sets of triptychs if I can remember to get them all framed.  Another plus–re-reading Thing 1’s and 2’s 2nd grade journals.  An excerpt from Thing 1: Here are five things I know about roks. First, all roks are not the same. Second, roks…  There must have been a fire drill or something that day. Meanwhile, two years later, Thing 2 could wax poetic for pages about her Ugly Dolls. #samefamilydifferentkids

And this is just the basement.  I’ve got three more floors of 17 years to get through. The first and second floors are not a worry. The third floor, however, is where all my fabric and yarn live. In my head, I think it would be easier to move all the fabric and yarn if they were actually garments. So instead of packing, I made this:

This is the City Stroll Wrap Skirt from Liesl & Co. LOVE it! It may be a skosh short, but somehow the lines work.  If it were longer, I fear it would verge on frumpy.  I will definitely do this again, most likely in a wool or flannel (and lined) for winter with tights.

I use my morning runs to plan out the day’s to-do list. Ah, the best laid plans…if only Garmin had an app for packing, or I could get some ‘kudos’ from Strava, maybe it would be going better.  Honestly, though, without a fall goal race, my runs since Salt Lake have all been in the “easy” category. Today I decided to mix it up with 1’x1′ fartleks (1′ at 8:30 pace, 1′ off). It was tough. The crushing humidity had broken, but I found it hard to just get going (although eventually I did).  I’m going to have to pick a race soon if I want to get any oomph back into pace.

Since my birthday in early July I’ve been using my Apple Watch for my runs (while running Strava simultaneously through either the app on the watch or my phone).  Here’s what I like about it:

  1. the fit. i barely notice it. all my other devices always move around on my wrist. Or are too tight and eventually hurt.
  2. the workout app is easy to operate. just press a button and go
  3. it measures my heart rate. I’ve always been curious about that.

Here’s what’s missing:

  1. the watch is off on distance. it measures everything short. and not just a “oh, I must have cut a corner” short. Really short, like 3/10 to 5/10 of a mile. That’s a big discrepancy.
  2. the workout app does not compile data in one place to navel gaze at view.

Neither the watch nor Strava let me set up workouts, like fartleks or tempo runs, that will give me a little buzz when it’s time to pick up my pace or slow it down.  So today I went out with both my garmin and apple watch on my left wrist, feeling a bit like Inspector Gadget. And wouldn’t you know it, today the apple watch was over on distance. ugh. (and yes, I know silly stuff like this shouldn’t bother me, because it’s not like I’m going to the olympics or anything, but…the point is…accuracy. amiright?)

Aside from the workout app, I’m enjoying the apple watch. I feel like it’s got a better handle than the Vivofit did on my activity, and I like that even if I leave my phone in my bag, I can see (and respond to) phone calls and texts. That’s been the biggest help so far.

If only it could pack boxes.

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Back from blog-cation

Always after Juneathon I feel the need for a blog break, because frankly, after 30 solid days of posting, I’m a little bit bored with myself.  This year, the added bonus playing catch up at home after 12 days away made the blog-cation a necessity.

In a nutshell, here’s what’s been going down chez Sato:

1. I celebrated yet another birthday.  I am now one year shy of 50. The downside to being 49? Aging out of all technology all together in one freakin’ day.  What makes me think this?  First, I’ve been involved in beta testing an app.  It’s a productivity app and all was well and good until July 2nd when all my data disappeared and for the life of me I couldn’t find it. Still can’t.  I’ve missed countless appointments and projects have fallen by the wayside because it’s all gone. Even better–I can not make heads or tails of the instructions to begin to recover said data.  To remedy the situation, I have returned to pen and paper.  Second, the Mister generously bought me an Apple Watch for my birthday. By the time I returned home after a day of airports and flying, it was 11pm when I opened this gift. And I spent next hour trying to get the weather for Cupertino, CA off the stupid watch. I ended up calling Apple Support at midnight, in tears.  (10 days later, I’m more excited about this watch–it solves a bunch of problems for me, mostly stemming from the fact that I usually have my phone buried somewhere in my bag and I miss tons of calls and texts. But not any appointments or to-dos, because that data is all gone).

2. I watched the US crush Japan in the World Cup finals. This was a great game, and thankfully the Mister chose to watch it at another venue with his compatriots so I could cheer and fist pump to my heart’s content without worrying about hurting his feelings. To celebrate even further, my NY office was on Friday’s ticker tape parade route, so I dragged Thing 3 into the city with me for the festivities.  I’d never gone to a ticker tape parade and this did not disappoint!

on the train

 

Here’s a video of the first float of champions!

 

I also finished a few projects.  First Chinoiserie

I used the wrong yarn for this project, and the intarsia didn’t come out as well as it should have. It’s also a tad short (the sleeves are short on purpose) and I’m not happy at all with how the sleeve cap fit into the armscye. I’ll pass this along to Thing 2 or 3, but it’s sorta scratchy so most likely it will go unworn.

To regain some knitting mojo, I did cast on for this:

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I also finished my Landgate anorak.

Here’s what I’m pleased about: 1. the lining. 2. the top stitching. 3. the length (both arms and body) 4. the pink zip and cording 5. the welt pockets (which you can’t see)

Here’s what I’m not so pleased about: 1. screwing up the casing for the drawstring and making a big hole in the lining and then doing a very lame job of trying to repair it on the front. (I ended up making buttonholes instead, and even screwed those up, and the repair consisted of two new buttonholes and using a navy blue sharpie to disguise the mistake of the first two buttonholes. ugh). 2. the fit–it’s sorta huge. I made the size small, but I think I could have gone with the XS.  If I don’t cinch the waist, I look a bit like a navy blue druid. 3. not knowing how to finish off the cording so it doesn’t fray.  I know I could singe the ends, but that just seems wrong.  And many of toggles still leave the ends free.  (this is why I haven’t trimmed the cording yet; I’ve got to figure out how to finish it before I cut anything loose).

My blog-cation may extend a bit, as we’ve got a house full of 17 years to pack up over the next few weeks. This is not a chore I’m looking forward to, and one that most definitely my Last Minute Lucy tendencies need to be absent for.

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Soccer on the last day

Watching, not playing, though.

Another Juneathon for the books. This one ended with a 1. 47 mile walk with my coworker before another 7 hour stretch at our booth and then the US women’s soccer game against Germany.  Not so much activity, unless you count fist pumps and woo-hoos!

Here are my Juneathon stats:

  • # of runs: 18
  • # of miles: 103
  • # of steps: 423,074
  • # of miles: 217 (but 103 of those are running miles)
  • # of days I missed my step goal: 12 (gee, look at that. On the 18 days I ran, I hit or surpassed my step goal).
  • # of yoga days: 10
  • # of Juneathon days missed: 2
  • cities visited: 2
  • miles traveled: too many to count
  • days away from home: 16
  • houses sold and sold (tentatively): 1 of each
  • colleges visited: 3
  • sewing projects started: 2/completed: 0
  • knitting projects started: 2/completed: 1 (almost, that is)

I am tired. My july-athon will consist of napping.

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Robin Hood

watch out!

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Yesterday I took my 2nd sewing class with Sunni from A Fashionable Stitch. We only had two hours together, but I got the two most difficult elements of my Landgate anorak complete: the lined hood (complete with zip) and a welt pocket.  The rest of the project should go together quite easily (raglan sleeves sewn to the front and back.  The only tricky part will be adding the lining, but it shouldn’t be that tough. (she says with confidence having done this, hmmm, maybe zero times before.)

Yesterday was a recovery day. I did some light yoga, because honestly, my legs were not having anything to do with moving about. It took considerable concentration to lower myself into a seated position. And if I stayed there too long (which was approximately 4 or 5 minutes), then I was unable to rise. If I stayed standing, after the same 4 or 5 minutes, I was incapable to walking. Downhill running works completely different muscles, which I knew in theory, but now have experienced first hand.  Today already feels much better.

I’m now into my last four days in Salt Lake. It’s a really really clean city. The architecture is less inspiring, but the cleanliness (next to godliness?) is remarkable. On my way to pick up lunch the other day, I came across this:

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Any city that hires folks to clean the grout between bricks really takes its cleanliness to heart. Oh, and he’s doing this in 100F temps.  The people here are quite friendly, too. The runners ALL wave and say good morning. People chat each other up in line. Restaurant and service industry staff are all very pleasant. It’s nearly impossible to be in a bad mood, except when trying to get into a wine bar without a US passport. That can’t happen. (back story: my coworker, a US citizen, lives in Edinburgh, and has a Scottish driver’s license, and doesn’t carry around his passport when he travels. However, said foreign driver’s license isn’t legal enough for the state of Utah to allow him to drink wine in a bar. Oh. And he’s 40, and while young looking, is clearly much older than 21).

Maybe if he wore a hood.

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Roller Coaster

I’m lucky that almost everywhere I travel for work there’s a half marathon on the docket within a reasonable distance. Such was the case with Salt Lake City. When I learned I would be here for 2 weeks, I quickly googled races in Utah in June and the American Fork Canyon Half Marathon popped up.

So, while I didn’t register until the day before, I had this race in my back pocket for a long time, making it sorta my goal race to crack that elusive sub 2 hour time barrier. Given the net downhill, it was a totally reasonable expectation.

Spoiler: I didn’t quite get there. le sigh.

The race venue was amazing, although a bit on the early side. I was up at 3am, left my airbnb by 3:30 and got to American Fork high school by 4:15 to catch the bus to the start line, up the canyon. It was amazing to watch the sun rise while in the canyon. It was also quite remarkable at how not cold it was. You could tell people were prepared for much cooler temps–plenty of down jackets, etc. This did not bode well.

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The race (small-ish at about 2500 people) started promptly at 6am. And the first half mile was a very steep downhill.  But after that initial shock, the downhill evened out and the race meandered around the curves of this beautiful canyon road.

Given the grade of the slope, my breathing, even at this elevation, wasn’t labored.  I made a pitstop between mile 5 and 6, and it was at that point, as I walked to the porto-johns, that I realized how “funny” my legs felt. I knew at that point the downhill was going to take a toll.

Miles 1-8: 9:25, 8:52, 8:25, 8:44, 8:01, 9:27, 8:38

At about mile 8, we were out of the canyon and the course transitioned to some grassland trails.  This is not quite as picturesque as it sounds–there was a golf course and its ubiquitous housing development along the outskirts of the trail, but the undulation of the course was very welcome. The beating sun (yes, even at 7am) was not.  I did some walking along these miles.

Miles 9-11: 9:48, 9:38, 10:34 (some walking there, too)

We then turned into the town and made our way back to the high school.  At this point it was quite hot. At one point, my eyes got all stingy from the salty sweat. More walking.

Miles 12-13: 10:03, 10:30 and :47 (for the .1)

Garmin finish time: 2:01:43.  That was a new PR.  But the kicker? My chip time: 2:03:57. That’s not a PR. :(

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I should be happier about this. It’s a decent time (esp considering the bathroom break and the walking). The heat was on, but as it was not humid in the least, it wasn’t as debilitating as some other races I’ve done. The course was amazingly beautiful, and god only knows when I’ll get a chance to run a canyon again. But I’m not happy with how I approached the latter miles. I think it was around mile 10 or so when I realized I would really have to hoof it to make the sub 2. And I chose not to. And between miles 12 and 13, when I realized I could do some damage to my PR, I actually slowed down!  I can train my legs and lung capacity til the cows come home, but it’s the mental game where the wheels come off. I’m not quite sure how to remedy this, because it’s clearly the lynchpin between me and sub 2.

Anyways, the big issue for me today is how to actually move. After the race, I spent a delightful (hahahahaha) 7 hours standing at my booth. And now, after a well-deserved night’s rest, I cannot move. oh lord.

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Finally

today was a great day. 

Today’s juneathon consisted of jumping for joy. Singing praises. Mile-long smiles. Thank you SCOTUS. 

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Wake, run, work, rinse, repeat

Amazing how quickly you can settle into a rut, even in a new locale. Today was another run through the canyon then 7 hours on my feet in the booth. Evening was an excellent visit to a local yarn shop, Blazing Needles.  (I did not buy anything, although I’m sorely tempted by this. and this. and this. ). I especially appreciated the tricked out lexus.

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There actually was a bit more to my day.  My run in the canyon leads me past this sign, and it makes me giggle every time, as I wonder what on earth the pipe could possibly be doing that’s so nasty.

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And we carb-loaded at a local well-known Mexican place for dinner.

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Yes. Killer food. And killer drinks. And a killer line. But all worth it.

 

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Does talking alot count?

Booth hours started at 8am today, meaning there was no time for a run.

And actually, there really wasn’t that much walking.

But I moved my mouth a lot. Both for talking and eating. Does that count?

 

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no bobsled today

just another canyon run and a long day at the booth.

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