Runner & Biker Pendants/Necklaces

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


You know, I've been fretting lately that I haven't been running "enough!"  Well, it's enough for most 'other' people, but not for the 100-miler that I'm scheduled to run in 10 days!  I haven't gotten any long runs in for the past 3 weeks (had to stay home from my marathon last weekend coz I was sick) and I know it's gonna hurt when I run the Rocky Road 100!

That said, I HAVE been helping a few lesser-fortunate friends of mine.  One has MS and I take her places when she needs to go and I am trying to help her with some forms she has to fill out, etc.  The other, I'm afraid, is gonna lose her beloved Mother in the near future!  I try to  be here for her when she needs to talk or have a beer, etc.!  I know--I'm really going above and beyond the call of duty by having to have a beer!!!

THESE are the things in life that are important!  Getting outside of yourself and helping others!  Live by the three "E's" every day!!  Enthusiasm, Empathy and Energy!!!

Sometimes, helping others has been "the thing" that has gotten in the way of a long run.  That's ok--friends are more important than that.  I will always be fit and stay fit, so giving up a long run is the least I can do for a friend!

Today, however, "being THERE for a friend" and RUNNING came together.  My friend with the ailing mother, has to drive out to "break the news" about her mom's failing health and imminent death to her Dad later this morning.  So, last night--over a couple of beers--we decided to do a run together this morning!

I got up this morning, had a cup of coffee, and ran over to her place--6/10 of a mile--and was greeted by the happiest dog on earth before heading out on a run with my friend!  Animals are just the best spirit-lifters, aren't they?!

We headed out on a 4-mile run along the beach--heart rate rising, sun RISING over the ocean and the bluest sky!  We live in paradise, you see!  Sunny nearly every day!  So, we ran and we took walk breaks and we talked--sometimes about serious stuff, and we laughed and we sweat and WE KICKED BUTT!

It was the best way my friend could have started her soon-to-be-difficult day!  I was so happy to help her with that and was rewarded in return 3-fold by what she gave to me:  her friendship, a hug, a running companion!

This is LIFE my friends, and I cherish EVERY day of it!!!

Enjoy YOURS!!!  Get MOVING!!  Help someone ELSE today!!


Tuesday, January 17, 2012


I had the great pleasure of meeting and spending time with Patrick Sweeney this past weekend, thanks to a generous invite by Barefoot Ted McDonald to come and spend the weekend with them (and Reese Ruland) on Catalina Island while Ted ran the 50-miler.

Pat really touched me.  NO!  Not in THAT way!!!  He touched my heart and emotions.  Rarely do you meet people who are THAT down to earth and with whom you can relate to on so many levels AND he is so very funny!  He just makes me smile.

Another think about Pat is that he is a DAMN GOOD runner!!!  Along with winning road races of various distances (barefoot or in Luna Sandals), he has also won a NUDE run.  Check out one of his blogs ( to see just how awesome he is!!!

I've been following another one of his blog's ( and really liked the carefree nature of his running.  He runs mostly on the beach, in soft sand, barefoot!  So, that is what I did today:  Ran barefoot to the beach, on the beach for one mile in soft sand and then home for a total of 5K.

Unfortunately I didn't have the same luck as he does finding fun plastic toys and such!

For the longest time, I didn't find anything interesting in the sand except seagulls.

FINALLY, I found a plastic whistle!

When I went to wash the seagull poo off my foot in the ocean (see my footprint?), it looked like there were gold flecks in the sand/water.

Close up of the flecks!

Unfortunately the only other PLASTIC item of interest that I found was this extra large bottle of nasal spray.

My best find, was this nice, young lady, so I took her home!  How could I not, she had Luna Sandals in her hands!
So, from here forward, I designate January 17th to be "Be Like Patrick Day!"  Hopefully I will have another Marvelous Mud blog post before then!

My studio has been built...just waiting for the floor to dry so I can surface it and then prime and paint the walls.  Then, I will move the kiln in along with all the other equipment and start making art.  Already have TWO orders!!!  Thank gawd!  Coz I'm runnin' outta moulaaaaaa!!!

Have a GREAT "Be Like Patrick" Day!

On warm days, when I'm not running totally barefoot, I'm wearing LUNA sandals!!!  They're made by MONKEYS, you know?!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

How Can I Get Some New Balance Minimus Shoes EARLY???

New Balance Minimus Line

I REALLY need a pair of the Road and Trail versions of these Minimus shoes!!!  I have been trying to be patient, but it's not working!  I need them (ok, really WANT them) for my Race Across The Years 24-hour RACES!!!  I want to wear the Road version in Race #1 and the Trail Version in Race #2.

I've been wearing the New Balance 709s and 100s since they first came out, but these--with the help from Vibram--are going to be the best shoes EVER!!!  Lower heel!!!  Less midsole altogether!!!  Very close to "no shoe," yet with protection from cuts and rocks, etc.  WE ARE GONNA LOVE 'EM!!!

I can't wear my Vibram Five Fingers now that it is so cold out...but these Minimus--where I can keep all my toes together like in mittens (as opposed to separated like in gloves!) will be a great "virtually barefoot" option!!!

Doesn't anyone have a contact with NB who good get me in as a TESTER or something?!!!  I beg of you!!!  I need these puppies for Christmas!!!  :)

Shop New Balance!!!

Open Studio Holiday Sale!

Bill came early to get first pick of what he wanted!!

Yep!  This is pottery in the middle of my gym!!

Brian, Mary, Jason and Jenn

Jeri and Tracy

Eating was the BEST Part---well drinking too!

Kathy and Bill

Monday, December 13, 2010

Ready to Taper!

Well, the holidays must be near as my pottery making has dropped off (I'm busy taking my wares and selling them at the Holiday Market at Lincoln Square Mall in Urbana every Saturday) and now my training for Across the Years 24-Hr Race(s) has started to drop off as well...Starting today!

Yesterday, when i had planned to do a 5hr/3hr split--running 5 hours early in the morning and then running 3 hours from 9pm to midnight--I found the weather (snow and driving, blizzard-type winds) to be unbearable and hopped on the treadmill.

Once on the treadmill, the 5/3 split became 8 continuous, slow hours as I couldn't bear the thought of getting back on that treadmill again later that night.  So, from 10am to 8:15pm, I ran and ran and ran and took lots of little walk breaks.  Went through 6 Hammer Gels and 2 packs of Clif Shot Blocks as well as 3 packages of Clip2 Drink mix and 2 liters of plain water...and about 6 s!caps!

Had a hard time sleeping last night as my legs kept aching, but today, if time would allow, I could sleep like a baby!  Shoveled the snow drifts off the driveway and I think that will be my strength workout for the day.

My next run of any considerable length will be 2 hours on Wednesday night from 10pm to midnight, followed by an early morning run of 3 hours Thursday morning.  These split runs help to train you for some sleep deprivation and "running when you are tired" which simulates race conditions at ATY.

My mom will be coming down from Canada next week and I can hardly wait.  On Dec 27, she and I will fly to Phoenix to get ready for my race on the 29th.  I'm hoping for 125 miles.  I will then run the 24-hr race on Dec 31 with my friend Kelly---not to do well, but just to be able to be out there with her and give her some company!

Hope you all have a happy holiday season!!!  Tracy

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Flatlanders 12-Hour Race

Just a short report to say that this race in St. Louis, MO is TERRIFIC!  It is a 1.4-mile loop in a park and it is very nice, mostly shaded and even in the heat of the day and at the end when I was very fatigued, it never seemed like the loop was 1.4 miles.

The SLUGs (St. Louis Ultrarunner Group) are some of the best people you will ever want to meet and this was the FIRST race I've ever been in where I didn't see one (not even the top pull tab..) Gu/Gel packet or any litter at all on the path.

I started off feeling quite good...considering I was only 2 weeks post-Leadville 100.  For 2 hours, I was truckin' right along...and then this pain in my butt (piriformis?) and hamstring flared up worse than ever. got so bad that I felt like I was pulling my right leg forward each step by hiking my hip and rotating my hip forward.  The back of my leg--all the way down to my foot was numb and tingling and yet it apparently was NOT numb as I cold still feel a sharp, deep pain in that same area.

Just when I decided I would either quit or just walk as long as I could, I broke the "cardinal rule" and took 2 small regular aspirins to see what would happen.  NOTHING.  No pain relief at all.  So, like a dummy, after about an hour, I took 2 more.  THAT helped...for a few hours.  I think, had I not been the first-place female and 3rd or 4th overall, I might have found it easier to just quit.  I know I still made a stupid decision, but I did it.

The middle of the day warmed up and I was cramping in my calves...and no amount of s!caps or decrease in intensity (was just walking for almost 3 loops) seemed to help relieve the cramping.  Once the sun started to move to the east a bit, I started to come alive a bit...and by 6pm, I was feeling pretty good.

After my last loop, I was actually almost sprinting the 1/4-mi "out-n-backs" until the finish.
I was not keeping track of my place throughout the afternoon and evening and did not know what my total mileage was although I never saw a woman pass me, so I was pretty sure that somehow I had managed to stay in first.

Much to my amazement, I ended up with 69.35 miles which was good for 1st female and 4th overall.
We were so lucky to have a day that was sunny and nice, yet cooler than normal!

Met a LOT of VERY nice people and got to chat with some great friends that I hadn't seen in a while.

After my struggle at Leadville, with my asthma and my continued problems with asthma (think the start of the fall harvest is the problem right now), I never imagined that I'd ever win another race!  Am i lucky or what!?

Anyway, this is a great race, with GREAT volunteers, great runners, the BEST RDs (Victoria and David White) and a very nice venue.  If you like loop courses...where you get to chat with folks and see them again and again, I highly recommend this race!!!

In Health and Happiness, Tracy--The Marvelous Mud Hen!