Monday, 11 November 2013

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

After four days hard slog at the old sewing machine, I managed to churn out the bigger-and-better Christmas stockings for the kids, as per Santa's request.  Jeez.  Demanding much, Santa?  Hmmm?  I'm still deliberating over the naming or initialing of the cuffs, but otherwise they're done, and I'm pretty happy with them:

They're much bigger than the previous stockings, so they should fit plenty more in them.  I'm still not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing...

I did manage to tear myself away from the sewing machine a few times over the weekend.  On Saturday I conned Deane into letting me have my Christmas present early.  My favourite Asics are at the end of their life after having clocked over 700km since last Christmas.  My trail shoes, while having done less kilometres (about 460), are half a size too small so although they're still fine, they give me black toenails.  With the trails I'll be running in the coming months, this will just not do.  Then there's my Nikes which served me well for the half marathon last weekend (gosh, only last weekend?  Feels like ages ago now) and for this weekend's run (more on that later).  They've already done over 300km since February and they're really only suitable for short runs.  So, what's a girl to do?  Buy new ones of course!  I'm getting some Inov8 Roclite 295 trail shoes - they're designed to handle everything from gravel to forest trails to mud and clay so they'll be perfect for the Tussock Traverse in January, and the XTERRA series I'm considering doing during winter next year.  I haven't got them yet though, they didn't have my size in the store so they're ordering some in for me.  But yay for new shoes!  Not content to just get one pair for trails, I also got a road pair to replace my Asics.  Behold, my swanky new running shoes!

Brooks Glycerin 11, in one of my favourite colours!  Perfect :)  I'm itching to get out and test them on the road.  I've read quite a few reviews for these shoes and the general consensus is that they're comfortable, responsive, great for long-distance runs and general road running, but they wear out quicker than other shoes so will likely need replacing sooner.  Well, I guess you can't have everything...  I'm trying out different brands of running shoes to see if any are better suited to me than others.  I found it quite interesting watching the footage of my running gait on the computer screen at Shoe Clinic.  Wearing the Brooks, my running was dead straight, ankles straight, everything was perfectly bang on.  Then I tried a pair of Mizuno Waves and my left ankle was rolling in, my right ankle was rolling out, and everything was all off-kilter.  It felt fine at the time, but the footage showed a completely different story.  Proof that it is very important to carefully select the right shoes!!

I can't take these bad boys out for a test drive just yet however.  A day or two of rest is in order after Sunday's epic run, which my quads are feeling today.  I met a small group of runners that I was invited to join at Orvieto Cafe on Mt Eden Road, and the five of us headed off at about 7.30am, my friend in the lead.  Straight off the bat we went up a steep hill in the Big King Reserve, after which we had a quick break and photo op:

L-R: Ant, me, my friend Martin, and Deborah, standing on Big King Hill.  Dan's taking the photo.  You can see the Sky Tower and Mt Eden in the background

After that we headed back down the hill, through the streets and on to Cornwall Park and One Tree Hill - my second run/walk up that hill in a week:

The view was quite different to Wednesday's beautiful blue skies and fluffy white clouds.

The Sky Tower and Mt Eden, still quite far away in the distance, from a completely different perspective.  This time, the Sky Tower is to the right of Mt Eden

Then it was on to Mt St John.  I did not know this hill existed before Sunday.  I could say the same about Big King Hill.  It's amazing the places you discover when you're running:

View of One Tree Hill from Mt St John

View of Mt Eden from Mt St John

Martin and Dan bounding down the stairs like a pair of wallies

The final hill of the day was, of course, Mt Eden:

To be honest, I'm not sure if this trail was on Mt St John or Mt Eden.  They're all starting to run together...

I think that's Mt Hobson (left) and Mt St John (a little further back).  I don't know.  I'm a little lost...

View of One Tree Hill from Mt Eden.  So far away!

View of the Sky Tower looking across the crater of Mt Eden.  Much closer now, isn't it? ;)

After that, we ran down the hill and headed up Mt Eden Road back to where we started, near the Big King Reserve.  We took our time and enjoyed a leisurely run, but boosted it down the trails on the hills - so much fun!!!  I felt like a speedy mountain goat ;)  All up, we ran a little over 16km.  The pace was much slower than I'm used to, but it was a lot of fun running with other people and seeing so much of Auckland I hadn't seen before that I totally didn't care.

We had breakfast at Orvieto Cafe afterwards (well, I had morning tea since I'd eaten breakfast at 5.45am.  My body clock has adjusted to 5.30am wake ups surprisingly well).  I later discovered a couple of blisters in interesting places.  The combination of speed on the downhills, the length of the run, and less-than-perfect footwear will have contributed to that.  I'm wondering whether it would be worth trying out some Injinji socks for longer runs and trail runs...

In a couple of weeks, we're going to run a 20km section of the Hillary Trail.  I can't wait!!  I'll have to put together a bit of a first aid kit to take with me as it's a non-negotiable required item ;)  Fun times ahead!!

But wait!  Before I go, what kreachr post would be complete without some foodie goodness?  I must share my latest noms:

Continuing on that popular salad theme, here's Friday's garden salad with tamari fried tofu.  Yum!!  I love this tofu, and it is so quick to make!  Slice tofu.  Heat pan with a drizzle of oil.  Add tofu and sprinkle with tamari sauce.  When browned flip over and drizzle with more tamari sauce.  Remove from pan and eat.  Crazy easy.

Saturday's breakfast - buckwheat pancakes with banana and maple syrup.

This morning's breakfast - tofu omelette with grilled tomatoes and fresh avocado.  I inhaled it in about one minute.  So good!

And hey, here's a sunrise for good measure.  This one was taken from my kitchen window.  I'm just waiting for the Teletubbies baby sun to pop up...

It's Monday.  I'm supposed to start my Business Communications paper, but T is home sick today.  So I guess I have no more excuses for avoiding my housework.  All good things must come to an end I guess.  But first, a cup of tea.  Have a fabulous week :)

1 comment:

  1. Wow, awesome run. You are amazing!! And those stockings are rad, well done! Think I will have to find a cute one for Fletch's first Christmas this year :)