Saturday, June 15, 2013


     When I was trying to decide on a name for my blog, the eat/walk/run part came easy...but I also wanted to have a section that could be about anything, or everything!  I chose the word WINE to represent hobbies in my life, cooking, gardening, etc. 
     This year marks the second spring for our small vineyard of chardonel grape vines.  They are growing beyond my expectations.  We will need to get the trellis up this year to help the vines grow in the direction that is best for grape production.  Here is a picture of our chardonel grapes.
Chardonel is used in winemaking, but can be used for jelly.  I look forward to seeing the vines reach their full potential in the next 2-3 years.
     We also have a variety of other fruits and herbs on our farm.  We have apples, blackberries, peaches, and strawberries.  I have a small herb garden that includes lavender, oregano, and mint.  The oregano is blooming, so I should have already harvested the leaves.  They are at their peak flavor just prior to the plant blooming.  Here is my very healthy oregano...

     Wouldn't it be cool to be able to combine today's topic and pictures into a future EAT blog entry? One day I'll be able to drink my very own chardonel wine with a delicious pasta dish that includes my homegrown oregano.  Yes, that would be very cool indeed!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Friends along the trail...

     My journey into renewed fitness has brought some surprising benefits, aside from the obvious.  Losing weight and having more energy is the outcome I expected, but I honestly didn't think I would have so much fun!  Yes, it's been fun, walking miles and miles while watching the sun rise and set.  It's been fun watching it rain so hard, I wished I had windshield wipers on my glasses.  It's been fun running through mud puddles like a little kid and meeting box turtles on the trail. 
     It's been fun meeting new people that I might not have ever met until I ventured out onto the local trails.  After tackling a few 5k's, I decided to enter the local trail race this past March.  I met many wonderful people, volunteers and runners, who made the whole experience something I treasure.  Let me tell you about two young people I met at the Land Between the Lakes trail race.  Matthew and Julie Urbanski are a couple I had the privilege to meet the evening prior to the race, at packet pick up.  They had a table set up for selling her books, "The Trail Life" and "Between a Rock and a White Blaze".  I greedily bought both books and talked with Matt and Julie for a few minutes before visiting the "Friends of LBL" table. 
     Fast forward to the next morning, race day!  The LBL trail races are actually five races that all start at the same time!  The distances include a 10k, 23k, marathon, 60k, and 50 miles!  Matt and Julie were registered in the 50 mile race, which would be four laps on the Canal Loop single track.  Since I had done a few 5k races, I wanted to take on a bigger challenge and had signed up for the 23k.  It was no surprise to me when I started getting lapped by the fastest runners before I was even halfway through my one and only loop but it was a pleasant surprise to be recognized by Matt and Julie when they lapped me!  To be recognized and called by name, suddenly made something that seemed like a big mistake, into something more fun!  The camaraderie in the ultra distances is unique and I now recognize that as part of what makes the trail running community so special. 
     Matt went on to win the 50 mile race with Julie finishing a very respectable 23rd overall!  I finished last in the 23k, but I'm more than all right with that!  Being the last in the 23k put me in a unique position amongst the runners doing 3 and 4 laps that day.  I even got a second (or 3rd or 4th) wind at some point and was able to run a long ribbony downhill with a whole group of 60k and 50 mile runners.  For a few minutes, I felt like I was unstoppable, invincible, but then the single track widened enough for me to move over  and I applauded as they all went by.
     So, here is to Matt and Julie, friends along the trail. May the longtime sun shine upon you, all love surround you, and the pure light within you guide your way.
(Read more about Matt and Julie Urbanski at

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

National Running Day

     How appropriate for my next topic, RUN, to happen on National Running Day!  I got up extra early to run/walk 3 miles, before work, to celebrate national running day and to get my music and endorphin fix for the day!  It was a great run, full of a beautiful sunrise, clouds reflected on the surface of our pond, and my running buddy, Sparky, chasing rabbits! 
     Twitter and Instagram have both been full of great pictures and tweets about how everyone was celebrating this day.  From Asics retweeting their follower's pictures to Scott Jurek posting his "meet the moment", there certainly was no lack of inspiration for runners today.  I must confess, watching the trail run videos that are posted on twitter can be very addictive.  Watching them makes me want to go run a trail ASAP!  I can truly call running here at home trail running, because Sparky has made me some trails running rabbits, but there's nothing like the 11 miles of single track at LBL Canal Loop!!!  I ran the trails last Saturday in the was epic! 
     Btw, there are a variety of apps and websites that can help you keep track of mileage, speed, and time spent.  I use Walktracker Pro and then convert the time and speed over to myfitnesspal to keep track of my calorie expenditure.  I also love the map part of walktracker.  It is so cool to actually see where you've run!
     Here is a picture of my run today.  I hope you got out and enjoyed your run today, too!

Monday, June 3, 2013


Good Morning!!! 
     I considered waiting until tonight for today's post, but I hope I'm doing what today's topic is...WALKing!  Several friends and family members have asked me to help them start running.  I have to remind people, I walk first, run some.  Walking seems so simple, almost like you could tell someone, just go for a walk!  Though walking seems simple, there are some things that can "make it work".  First, make a goal!  A goal that would be easy to keep would be to walk for 30 minutes for two days a week and do an alternate exercise for two days a week.  These four 30 minute segments will increase your metabolism, boost your confidence, and give you something to look forward to.  I think looking at exercise in this manner makes it more fun and less like work. 
     So let's solidify these goals...what works best for you, walking in the morning or the evening?  Do you need music or do you prefer the sound of nature?  Do you like to walk alone or with a friend?  These are all considerations that can affect your success rate.
     Next, what to wear?  Wear comfortable clothes in the beginning.  If you're not comfortable, who would want to walk a couple of miles (or more!)?  You can buy more specific athletic wear after you've gotten comfortable with your walking "groove".  Shoes, and socks, I think, are the MOST important items in any walker's closet.  The shoes should be made for walking and/or running.  Socks should be moisture wicking and also designed for sports.  Putting good money in your socks and shoes could be a key factor in keeping you "on track" in your walking endeavors.  I've had a lot of success with both Asics and Brooks brand of shoes.  My favorite socks for walking/running are Saucony compression socks.  They aren't very pretty, but they do help my legs feel like I could walk/run a 100 miles! 

Sunday, June 2, 2013

In the beginning....

 (First blog ever)   
      I'll be honest, I'm not sure how this blog thing is going to go, but I thought it would be interesting to have a place to store and share information, especially about eating healthy, exercising, running, being in the outdoors, and discussing other hobbies!  So, let's start with EAT....
     I've recently discovered CHIA seeds!  Yes, just like on the "chia pet" commercial, "cha cha cha chia".  Chia seeds are high in the healthy omega-3 fatty acids, help our bodies absorb calcium and other nutrients more efficiently, and are touted as an "endurance" superfood, due to the way it changes carbohydrates absorption rate.   So far, there doesn't seem to be a downside to these tiny little seeds!  I've recently viewed a video for making chia "gel", but so far, I've just used them in my oatmeal and yogurt.  I can definitely tell a difference in my energy levels on the mornings I use it in my oatmeal.  I will report back here if I find any other specific information on chia seeds, but in the mean time, I encourage you to surf the internet and learn how chia seeds can help you in your daily diet! 
     And, I want to wish my hubby a happy happy birthday, today!