Monthly Archives: July 2013

My first Warrior Dash, or OMG OW!

When I heard of this event called a Warrior Dash, I was a bit intimidated. I don’t run.  I try, but it’s more like a walk/jog, as in walk a block, run a block.  I do Zumba and some Pilates to try and keep in shape.  I started also doing some strength training as the date neared for my first Warrior Dash.   I’ve done several 5K runs (walk/jogs), so this was going to be a fun new thing.  An obstacle course!  I was mostly excited to see if I could do all of the obstacles and still not die before the end of the course.   They give you a time tracking device and when you turn it in they give you beer!  Brilliant!

My beautiful picture

Ok so also another reason for doing this, I feel a bit broken most of the time and this was a test of myself to see how I would fare.  I’ve had an ACL reconstruction (ligament in the knee), a rotator cuff repair, a sever angle sprain and this pesky pinched nerve near my spine.   I wanted to see if I could do this and not break, sprain, pull something.  I mostly succeeded.

This was not easy, but it wasn’t the worse thing ever.  I think the Aerial class I did in April left me more sore on the upper body.  The obstacles were doable, but you had to put forth some good effort.  There was climbing and swimming and mud ditches and hurdles and fire!  I really pushed myself so towards the end I felt like I was going to throw up!  There were only two little obstacles left though and I knew I could do it.  I just had to keep in mind there was an ice cold beer waiting for me at the end!

This is the first and only obstacle course I have done so I do not have much to compare it to.  For my part, I did pretty well.  I can walk/jog a 5k in about 50 minutes.  My husband and I both completed this course and every obstacle in 67 minutes +/- a few seconds.  There is an option to walk around the obstacles if you can not complete it.

As I write this two days after the race, I am finding bruises in places I don’t recall hitting.  I have a large bruise all down my right front thigh and smaller ones on my arms.  I have rope burns on my shins and forearms.  I am proud of each and every bruise and scrape because damn it I earned these suckers! As far as injuries, I’m not sure if it’s related but I may have irritated or re-injured my rotator cuff.  Time will tell.

I am proud that I made it through and am considering doing another one in the near future.  Near being far enough out that I have healed fully 😉

My beautiful picture

www.warriordash.com

Paint Creek Trial

I get bored easily, probably why I like adventures so much.  Even for something as simple as doing a walk/jog I find I do better if I change my scenery.  So on this particular day I found a not too far away place called Paint Creek Trail.  This was a high point in a day that wasn’t going so well.

Paint creek trail can be reached at several points.  I ended up near the paint creek cider mill on Orion road in Lake Orion, MI.  This is not hard to find if you have decent directions.  I had a map program that was possessed by evil electrical gremlins giving me wrong turns trying to anticipate the route it thought I would take and zooming when I need it to zoom the least.  So an hour and a broken phone screen later I arrived at the mill.  Blissfully they have public restrooms as well.

Paint Creek wheelsPaint Creek_1

This is an absolutely beautiful and well marked trail that was converted from a rail line.  It’s crushed rock and wide enough that you don’t have to worry too much about a bike or jogger being able to pass you. The path runs along Paint Creek and winds in and away from the path in spots and makes that beautiful bubbling music that creeks can do.   It’s a straight trail so I as much as I wanted to keep going, I had to keep in mind that I still need to muster the energy to get back to my car.  For my needs, this was a beautiful path that gives me a few options to mix it up since I can’t yet do the full 8.9 miles and then back again.  I can begin at any one of the easily accessible trail heads and do a few miles at a time.  This particular day I did 2.7 miles one way.

Paint Creek 2

If your hungry, there is a cute little cafe where they lure you in with the sweet sweet smell of cider and cider mill donuts *drooool*.  I was starving after my driving mis-adventure so I indulged in a darn yummy hot dog before setting out.

Paint Creek cafe

You can find specifics about the trial here http://www.paintcreektrail.org/ or here http://www.traillink.com/ for starters.

Sleeping Bear National Park

Ran away from home last weekend! We took off Friday and headed over to Honor where I found a cute little motel, aptly called the Honor Motel, http://www.honormotel.com/ .  This was a good spot to be.  Not far from the National park, has a mini-fridge and microwave.  To save $ I took hard boiled eggs and pre-cooked sausage patties with us.  It has the decorated in the 80’s charm that most older motels do.  It was comfy, in a good local and not too expensive.  Perfect for our last minute plans.
On Saturday we headed to Glen Arbor to see about renting some kayaks.  We found Crystal River Outfitters http://www.crystalriveroutfitters.com/ where you can rent kayaks, canoes and bicycles. Having only a day to play we opted for the 2-3 hour kayak trip on Crystal River.  It was beautiful although you have to be careful because it can get very shallow in spots.  My husband and I got stuck more than once on a sand bar.
There are three points where you need to walk the kayak over the road.  One is optional as the drainage tubes are large though to slide through.  They call this shooting the tube!
We had lunch at a deli next to Crystal River Outiftters and then hit the beach at Good Harbor Bay on Lake Michigan.  We blew up a new toy and lounged on chilly but refreshing Lake Michigan for a couple hours.  We also learned a valuable lesson, tie your toy off or anchor it.  Trying to drag the new toy back towards the beach after drifting pretty far out was quite the chore.  Or so my husband tells me.  Honestly I kept offering to help! 😉
Lastly, because we are nuts we did the dune trail at Sleeping Bear  http://www.nps.gov/slbe/index.htm. If you don’t know it, it’s up and down sand dunes for something like 2.5 miles and then you have to turn around when you reach the lake and do it again. *ow*  I am not ashamed to admit I was ready to quit 3/4 of the way to the lake *L*.  My best recommendation, is do what the guide notices say, take a snack (or two) and plenty of water.  Next time I will keep my bathing suit on to cool off before we head back from the lake.  The background image of sand and water on my site is the view from the top of dune #1.
Then it was time for cold beer and doing nothing.
**We saw a few people on the dunes in bare feet.  This seemed like a good idea to my sand weighted tennis shoes, but each person we spoke with said their feet were burning on the sand and it got to be like stepping on sand paper after that long hike.  Except for one little girl whom my husband over heard saying she hoped the sand exfoliated her feet!