Asa’s soccer practice was canceled yesterday evening.  San Antonio had a wild cold snap and it was in the low 60s when the three year-olds were supposed to start their comedy routine. (The other way!!!! Run the other way!!!  That’s the wrong gooooal!!!!!!)  You read correctly, soccer practice was canceled due to 60 degree weather.  Call me Tiger Mom heartless, but I think they should have risked the frostbite and hypothermia.  Sure, it was some 30 degrees cooler than the day before, but it struck me as a Decline-and-Fall-of-the-Roman-Empire moment.  Our children are too delicate for 60 degrees?  To be fair, it was also windy, and those miniature soccer balls can really get going with a little wind behind them.  The last windy practice had preschoolers and their parents chasing balls down across three soccer fields.  I’m just bitter because I was looking forward to hearing my good friend O. holler Star Wars analogies at her son during practice.  “The goal is the sarlacc and you’re Boba Fett!”  (The sarlacc is the giant sand hole monster — in case you’re not up on your motivational Star Wars soccer analogies.)

I’ve had trouble settling down into blogging everyday again.  My ability to compose sentences atrophied in the Gila — along with my leg muscles.  I was also working with really good writers and storytellers, which makes me feel a bit self-conscious about my vacuous journaling.  This too shall pass.

Amanda and I are going to hash out the details of training for Western States today and I can’t wait to add the numbers to my lovely yellow calendar creation.

So here is what my instructor friends were eating during the Gila course:  2 scoops Muscle Milk, 1/2 cup oatmeal, coffee, one Clif Builder’s Bar, one Balance Bar, one packet of tuna, 1/2 cup black beans, handful of almonds, and spices.  Every day.  Can you guess the diet?

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14 Responses to Reentry

  1. Footfeathers says:

    60 degrees? I’m putting on my shawl just thinking about it.
    Sounds like you guys were on the footfeathers single guy diet.

  2. lizahoward says:

    It does sound like a single guy’s diet. And everybody on the diet was single — though all are getting married shortly and there one was a gal (not me). But, no, it’s more famous than single guys.

  3. footfeathers says:

    atkins? (oatmeal is the only diversion from that whacky diet).

  4. Tim Smith says:

    That is ridiculous. I went out for a cozy 10 miler and it felt amazing! I even arrived back at my apt with a sweat-soaked shirt (albeit long-sleeved).

    No idea on the diet. Definitely not Paleo. When did the hard-boiled eggs come in to play?

    PS – I’m all signed up for Inks Lake 60k and working on my “training” as well 🙂 Thanks for connecting me with the group – the trail running is really helping.

    • lizahoward says:

      I carried 18 hard boiled eggs in the top of my pack from Day 1 and they did surprisingly well. No cracks or disasters. After Day 10’s breakfast egg though, I felt, for no particular reason, that it’d be a good idea to toss the rest. It was the halfway point in the course and I offloaded them during our food and fuel reration. I’d definitely do it again — though I’d probably invest in a snazzy egg carrying case next time. I just used the egg carton and an ensolite pad this time and it was a bit bulky.
      Glad to hear the frigid temps didn’t keep you in. Looking forward to running with you soon.

  5. klrodgers says:

    Zone? And the plain, not-for-athletes version. How many “blocks” is that? I don’t want to trash Zone too much, as it is better than what alot of people eat, but most Zoners eat very low quality foods and stress about conforming to the pre-determined amounts rather than learning to respond to what their bodies are telling them. Zone helped me at one point, but I now think the best parts of the paleo scene are where it’s at. There are some amazing bloggers out there. Beginners looking for an intro could try,, and/or Each of those have a more or less findable “start here” page. One really good intro-to-all-the-main-blogs page is at Hunt Gather Love.

    Sorry for going off on that. I hope you are going to write more about the food dynamic on the Gila trip. All types of social interactions on a group trip with leaders is a very interesting subject to me. Especially a NOLS one, where there is a definite culture, yet very individual leaders.

    • lizahoward says:

      Right about the Zone! 🙂
      I’m not looking to become an amazing blogger — just looking to maintain my ability to compose complete sentences — while spending most of my hours alone with a three year-old.
      And lots of my best stories can’t be told since this is a public forum. You’ll have to corner me at a race.

      • klrodgers says:

        > lots of my best stories can’t be told since this is a public forum.

        Ah, a classic writer’s plateau. I bet you know all the runner’s plateaux. Breaking out of “cant be told in public” is like your first longer-than-5k.

        A favorite radio moment (from memory). Brother and sister are both writers. Something really horrendous has just happened in their family.
        Sister: You CANNOT write about this!
        Brother: Why? Looks like you aren’t going to use it.

        😉 And I’d love to talk to you at a race sometime; but over there, you’d be a celebrity and I’d be probably too afraid.

      • lizahoward says:

        I promise I’m not all that scary. Scary looking post race, but very friendly. Promise not to vomit on you too. And thanks for the shove to get writing. I appreciate it.

  6. Lisa says:

    That diet would put me in a “zone” alright. The constipation zone! Yikes. Too bad it’s difficult to pack fresh fruit on outdoor trips.
    Liza, the main reason I read your blog is because you are an exceptional writer and storyteller!! It is a joy to read your words because I am entertained and inspired at the same time. Isn’t that why we all read anyway??

    Still training for that NF 50k. I hope I can make it. I will look for you but it probably won’t be too hard as you will most likely win an award and I will just listen for your name!

    When I went to Phoenix to be with my dad for surgery- he did well by the way, I enjoyed the 80-90 degree weather but I didn’t run at all because I just wasn’t motivated by busy streets and isolated canal banks with scary dogs lurking around.
    Here in Portland I am absolutely spoiled with Forest Park and all the wonderful wilderness areas I can go to. My husband’s residency is complete in June 2012 and we are deciding where to move. We very well may stay here but Colorado, northern California, northern Arizona come to mind.

    If you had to choose your ideal place to live, where would it be? Admittedly, I am really driven by access to beautiful trails and nature!

    • lizahoward says:

      Lisa, Very happy all went well for your father. And you are right on about the constipation! We took Leave No Trace practices to a new level. I wasn’t on the same meal plan as the guys (though that ridiculously named Muscle Milk does make for a nice coffee sweetener), but I still played around with Zone ratios — and I was getting kind of nervous around Day 4 when I hadn’t had to take a morning walk with the trowel.
      And thank you for your kind words. I love working in the field for NOLS. Being on course is akin to running after 70 miles when everything is distilled down to its essence. And it’s hard to talk about for a while afterwards — I think because I’m mourning letting it all go for another year.
      I promise I will not be winning anything at TNF 50 (unless all the other ladies are attacked by mountain lions or they decide to make it 100 miles), so we’ll just have to find each other.
      My ideal place? Hard one. I moved around every few years growing up and it’s hard to think about settling down somewhere. Mountain town in the West with a university for Eliot to work at with easy access to trails…

  7. mtnrunner2 says:

    That’s the “Whatever’s in my cupboard” diet. They left out soy sauce and freebie energy drink mix from a race in 2009.

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