If a tree falls

in the suburbs…

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do you hear it?

Apparently not.  As this tree was standing Monday, but not Tuesday morning.  (oh, and the house belonging to this tree is unharmed).

BTW, see the runner in the 2nd picture–I passed him! It’s rare when I pass people in the morning (or afternoon, for that matter).  However, he was nonplussed by the fallen tree and kept going.  And that, my friends, is why he will meet his goals for his next race, and I will struggle mightily, albeit with good blog fodder.

My next race (the Old Port Half) is worrying me a bit.  This race kicked my sorry arse last year, and the course this year is more difficult because they changed the course to include this crazy killer hill early on. To add to the fun, there’s a mind-numbing 3.5 mile loop around a cove. Although flat (and cinder which nice on the feet and shady which nice on the head), it’s so expansive and round that it seems as though you make absolutely no progress at all.  Coming off my injury, I don’t have an aggressive time goal for this race (eventually I want to kill 2 hours), but I do have some other, more zen-like goals: consistent pace, being in the moment, no walking, having a GREAT time…

But the hill is still a worry, so to psych myself up , Tuesday morning I did some hill repeats.  My four mile loop is an out and back along two parallel roads.  I realized (duh! only been living in this town for 15 1/2 years) that these two roads sit on the “ridge” that my town is named for (duh, again, Glen RIDGE), and that every quarter mile or so there are intersecting perpendicular roads that are actually hills.  So, as I made my way home, each time I came to an intersection, I jogged down the hill and then ran up it.  It made for a tough workout, and I wish I had thought of this earlier in my training.  I’m happy with how I made it up the hills, but disappointed that my legs would just quit once I got to the top.

Such a coincidence, then, after my run when I was perusing FB, the Another Mother Runner post had some hints for hill climbing. I really liked #4–taking 10 steps after the hill crests.  That jives with my coach’s advice to start easy, focus on points about 20′ ahead (not the top and not the road under your feet), and use your arms to pick up the pace near the top.

This morning, though, instead of running, I decided to do some cross-training of the sewing variety.  With the stupid heat and humidity sitting on top of us, I haven’t been sleeping well, so I decided that instead of tossing and turning for yet another night, I would put the time to use.  I made Amy Butler’s Anna tunic. Except that I made the camisole version (shorter).

And in the spirit of La Tour de France, voila la bicyclette:

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In the interest of full disclosure, I had cut and pinned the pattern Monday, so all that’s left was the actual sewing. Which took a little longer than anticipated, and I still need 4 buttons (there are 4 tab buttons that close the back), but let’s stick a fork in this one.

Each time I sew (similarly to each time I run), I learn something.  This time the lesson is: while my narrow back and small bust require sewing a smaller size (6-8), my arms are not sticks.  This is the 2nd top I’ve made where the armholes have been snug.  I’m not going to rip out and reposition the yoke on this because it was such a bear working with these curves, but when I make this again (in the mini-dress silhouette in a fine wale corduroy for winter to wear over a long sleeve waffle knit and leggings), I will know better and make adjustments.

While I’m pleased with my early morning productivity, it begs the question (as I start to fade)–if a knitter/runner/sewist falls (asleep) at her desk, do you hear it?


  1. Extraordinary treefall AND post. Bringing your sport, your art, and your writing sense together makes the blog extraordinary and more interesting. Book in your future? Doesn’t have to be, just wondering!

  2. WOW….that is a HUGE tree.

    And if it was me and I was in the middle of a race I STILL would have stopped lol. And by the way, the fact that you had that injury earlier…and you are ALREADY kicking arse … tells me you will do ok on your run this weekend. Hills be damned! (I know, easy for me to say, I am not running!)

    But … you have fun…nod nods…that is the main thing *smiles*

  3. What caused the tree to keel over? Lucky escape for all concerned. Yes, for sure, if I was in a race I`d only be thrilled to have an excuse to stop. Good going on the sewing. And those nasty, nasty hill repeats.

    • I think the rainy, rainy spring we’ve had leads to a lot of tree toppling here in NJ. That and hurricanes, but we haven’t had one of those recently. When the ground is completely saturated (as it is now), the trees closest to the street (which have very shallow root systems because of the street) tend to topple when we have a sudden rainy deluge, which we did the night before. A little scary, because these trees are all in the 125 y.o. range, so they’re enormous.

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