Category Archives: Comfort Zone

Frozen Head Bound


I am going to Frozen Head State Park in Tennessee! I’m psyched!

Frozen Head Bound Weekend

 

Why on earth am I going to visit a state park in Tennessee the first weekend of April? Is this a joke? Nope, it’s the Barkley Marathons.

Barkley Marathons The Race That Eats It Young

Barkley Movie

If you read my blog at all, you will have an inkling what the Barkley is. If not, go here or here. From my blog in 2011 “He’s been at the Barkley, completed two laps..he’s a Barkley runner some murmured trail talk, looking at the unassuming skinny runner ahead. Newby ultra runners are in awe. Then someone asks the question, “what is the Barkley?”

The Barkley is April Fool’s Weekend 2017.

My History with the Barkley

Hold on to your Manhood Bib Barkley

From my blog in 2012..”I am such a Barkley geek.

I’ve been fascinated by this race since I became an ultra runner.  When I had my podcast, in 2007, I had the pleasure of interviewing Laz and then Flying Brian Robinson after his course record….”

 

Weekend Off

Bad Things Barkley Biblt ended up being my four day weekend off work. I had several options on fun things to do. There is a Wilderness First Aid Course at Spruce Knob, West Virginia. I could learn something, hike the great trails.

Excuses To Go

Barkley BibBut I also wanted to attend the Barkley in person, at least once! See the famous yellow gate, go for a hike or two, maybe catch a glimpse of a runner at the Fire Tower.  I know folks that are part of the race, but I didn’t have a compelling reason, other than just hanging out.

Crewing

Bad Things Barkley Bib

I sent a few emails, seeing if any friends were in the race this year. Note: the list of runners is not made public. Runners may “out” themselves, such as Gary Robbins, Mike Wardian, Jamil Coury have declared.  Other runners keep it on the down low.

A friend of mine is in the race, and I am crewing for my friend! I don’t have permission at this time to say whether my friend is “Out” or not, so no names at this time.

Crewing Responsibilities

This might be the easiest crew job ever. I will only see my runner once a loop, when they return to camp. I will have soup, wraps, coffee, soda, ready to serve, first aid kit available. The idea is to do a quick turn around and get them back Out There. Then my day will be mine to hang out at the campground or go for a hike.

Are you going to follow the Barkley this weekend? Check #BM100 for any updates!

Take A Break

Take a Break

I have returned from my longest vacation break ever, 18 days off work. Most of that was spent out of the country in New Zealand.  Take a break in New Zealand I’m so glad I was able to take a break.

Running

I ran and DNF’d my swan song race,  the TUM 62K.  Tarawera Falls KimbaBeing under trained and overweight and not being in any sort of a running mindset did not help me power through the race. The knee hurting and leg cramps after about 15K didn’t help either. Perhaps I will write a race report sometime. This break helped me come back as “not a runner”.  It was more of a clean break.

Social Media

I was very happy to be away from the vitriol and negativity spewing from the interwebs. We did not use our phones in NZ (we did have internet access in the evenings) and I really did not miss picking up my phone and looking at it too many times in one day!

Clean Break as new Me= Kimba 2.0

While I was running the TUM several times my thoughts went to “I used to be able to bomb downhills” ” I used to be able to do that”.  That was one of the things I had to put out of my head. I’m no longer that person, no longer that runner. I might WISH to be, but it is not going to happen.  next chapterIt’s time for me to EMBRACE the new Me. As Popeye says “I am what I am”.

New Focus

The Guidebook for biking the Great Allegheny Passage/C&O Canal Trail was waiting for me when I returned home. I immediately picked it up and got intrigued with starting to plan out this new adventure.

New Free Time

Socrates Quote

I’m no longer experiencing “guilt” for not being out there running. I have oodles of time back.  I’m looking forward to more mini adventures-exploring areas around Ohio, hiking, trail time, volunteering, work on my gardens and my home.  I have a small barn that I intend to turn into a writing retreat.New project

Adventures Out of my Comfort Zone

Adventures outside my Comfort Zone

There are adventures out there outside of my comfort zone! I know, I would like to try almost anything. But there are some activities I won’t consider-well maybe I did consider but thought better of it.

Everest

Everest fascinates me. I’ve read many books written about ascents and accidents. I even watched the movie (I don’t think it was very factual.) Everest is too cold, too high, and too expensive. Mount Everest Outside the Comfort Zone I’ve been at 14,000 feet, I can’t imagine hanging out at Everest Base Camp at 17,000 feet and then climbing up to the top of the world.

Spelunking

I do have a bit of claustrophobia. I was actually fine when I went in the underground gold mine in Silverton, but it was brightly lit and the environment was controlled. But squeezing through small spaces in the dark?

Spelunking

Photo courtesy of David A. Riggs


 Where you could get stuck? Oh, no thank you.

Shark Cage

Who ever thought it would be a good idea to get in the water with great white sharks? Did nobody see Jaws? Or that You tube clip from when the shark proved greater than the cage?

I would rather go cave spelunking.

Body/Fitness Competitions

This is perhaps more of a challenge than an adventure, but I’m sure it feels like an adventure to the men and women of muscle building/fitness competitions when they are up on stage competing.  

I do not have the mental fortitude to faithfully stick to a regimented diet and work out schedule for months on end to get to their final goal.  My hat is off to them!

What adventure is clearly outside your comfort zone? Hit me up, I might get ideas for further adventures!

Save

Embrace The Bike: My BHAG 2017

 

Embrace the Bike

BHAG is Big Hairy Audacious Goal. I need to have something BIG to do, something new, something fun, something outside. Since I’m not supposed to run with my arthritic knee, I’m turning to biking. Since I’ve never been fast but have endurance, I’ve become interested in long distance biking.  I first set the goal of a century ride (100 miles) in 2017, but as that idea percolated, more ideas came to mind.

Great Allegheny Passage

The Great Allegheny Passage is 150 mile trail from Pittsburgh PA to Cumberland Maryland. I thought this would be a good goal. There are no motorized vehicles on it, and this would fulfill my goal of a century ride-plus some!

Great Allegheny Passage  AND the C&O Trail

Where the GAP Trail ends in Cumberland, Maryland, the C&O Towpath Trail takes over. The C&O Trail goes from Cumberland to Washington DC. You can ride your bike from Pittsburgh PA to Washington DC.  This is 335 miles.  As I thought about this, it seemed like riding just “half” the trail would only be half complete.  I’m sure I would want to complete the whole trail-so why not do that from the start?

Amtrak is the key

Getting to one end of the trail could be tricky except there is Amtrak! It is a single train ride from Pittsburgh to Washington DC. They now have a new service where you just wheel your bike onboard for a small fee of twenty bucks-easy peasy!

Training Trails

I have a close bike trail to train on. It is the Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath Trail. Full length is 73 miles, which would give me great opportunities for long mileage off roads.

So here’s to my BHAG for 2017, embrace the bike!

My 2017 Goals

2017 Goals

This usually, if I write one, starts out as “what races I am running” for the year.

This is going to be a different year, maybe the start of new me, or Kimba 2.0 as I call her.

I may not be running much. I have Grade 4 Arthritis on my right knee. I’ve seen the XRays (went to the doctor in December) where there is not a gap between my bones.  Knee Arthritis
Hence the pain on my knee. Running is the worst thing you can do for this.  Walking is good. Swimming, biking, hiking is good. Virtually every other sport under the sun is good-except for running.

It’s going to be a very flexible year that I will embrace.  (Embrace is my word of the year!)

Hiking: I’ve become interested in the Buckeye Trail. I received several map sections of the BT for Christmas and I would like to cover these in 2017.  I would also like to do some overnight camping.

Biking: I’m going to ride my bike this year. I need to find trails or roads without lots of traffic. One of my goals will be to ride a century, or 100  miles.

Swimming: I am learning to swim with my face in the water. I think it will be fun and out of my comfort zone to “try a tri” which is a swim, followed by a bike, followed by a run.

Volunteer: this is definitely on the calendar. I will be working at the following races Forget the PR 50K in April and Massanutten 100 in May.  I will be recruiting volunteers for a new adventure race here in southern Ohio, at Camp Tuscazoar in August.

What’s on your adventure/recreation/racing calendar for 2017?

One Step Out of the Comfort Zone

One Step Outside the Comfort Zone

 

It’s NaBloPoMo! That is National Blog Posting Month, where I will successfully publish a blog post daily, for the month of November.

One writing prompt for this challenge is:

When was the last time you did something brave?

The first item to contemplate is the term, or definition of bravery. One definition is “brave spirit or conduct; admirable quality of being able to confront brightening things.”

I usually thing, in the matter of things I attempt to complete there is a fine line between bravery and stupidity.

Everyone’s definition of bravery is different. For example, I drove to a different city Wednesday night to watch a concert by myself. I would call this a microadventure, as I had never been to downtown Columbus or the Palace Theatre.

To me, this wasn’t bravery. This was one foot out of the comfort zone-negotiate traffic, find my hotel, find the theatre, sit next to strangers in a theatre.

Voila! The magic did happen right outside the comfort zone! I got to see Loreena McKEnnitt in concert, a chance and infrequent opportunity.  I got to see a new (to me) theatre and experience a different concert experience.  It just took a quick step outside the comfort zone to get me there.

What’s your definition of bravery? Have you done just a little hop outside of your comfort zone to find magic?

Ziplining with Dad on his 79th Birthday

Ziplining at The Wilds

 

A Project 50 goal was to go ziplining. I thought my dad would enjoy it.  What can one get a 79 year old man? Experiences.  I’ve been more interested in experiences lately than *stuff*.

The Wilds Zipline Tour

There is a cool place called The Wilds which is only one hour from me.  This is where I experienced my very first trail race back in 2006. I’ve actually never gone on any tours there. My father and I signed up for the zipline, while my mother and husband went on the open air safari ride.

Our tour guides were Dan and Jake. They were very responsible yet funny.  They explained at each tower what we were zipping next. ziplining guide  They were very conscious of safety-mainly this is a concern when braking, you can’t fall out of these super harnesses you are in!  Yes, we are going across that lake!

Our tour was just four people plus our guides.  A tour can take up to nine people at a time.  Your experience will take longer, as nine people have to be clipped in and sent, then caught and unclipped at the other end.  Our tour went a little quicker.

Ziplining at The Wilds

Outside the Comfort Zone..a little

I am not exactly afraid of heights but wasn’t that comfortable on the first one or two towers.  Zipping was fine, once you step off the platform, you GO! Zip! By the time you are looking around, you are about at the next tower and time to brake!  I got more comfortable standing on the towers as the tour progressed.  There is a total of ten zip lines, and then you rapel off the last tower.
we came from there!

I think I got a bit more comfortable about halfway through the tour.  I got the idea of braking better and getting back up on each tower.  It was fun!

Dad ziplining

My dad had a great time too! He is a very active 79 year old, just finished softball season.  There is no reason to let age deter you from experiencing some new activities.  I could have bought him a new wrench for his birthday but I think both of us had a much better time together hanging out in the trees.

Dad and Daughter safely down!

Happy Birthday Dad!

P.S. He mentioned jumping out of an airplane…