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Has it really only been 10 days since I posted my goals for 2016? It is feeling like months ago. How am I doing on them? Well, lets see.

1. Master the pistol squat
I got pretty excited about this. I worked on it 1-2 times a week during a TRX workout. I have not put specific focus into the pistol, but I have been working ankle flexibility and regular squats to help make it happen.

2.  Get  StrongFirst Certification
I am registered for the 9 hour technique course on January 17 at Five Points Academy in Manhattan. I am looking forward to it. I am also taking kettlebell class 3x a week right now. I plan to do more as I work it out with my running schedule. I don’t want to burn out doing both.

3. Race the WhiteFace Skymarathon.
I am registered for the Skymarathon at Whiteface in the Adirondacks and I have a coach who is working me out daily.

4. Race the Marquette Trail 50 in MI
I am registered for the Marquette Trail 50, a now sold out trail race in Michigan. But, two friends just got into the Leadville 100,  through the lottery, Leadville 100 is probably one of the most coveted  racing in the country, that takes place in Colorado the same weekend. One friend I paced at the Javalina 100 got in, and, well, I would love to skip my race to pace her to a 100 mile finish. I will still get in my 50 miles, but in the mountains of Colorado and with a super fun friend.

5. Build a canoe by hand.
Until I secure my class, which will be with Hilary Russell, there is a great fundraiser for a canoe at Yestermorrow School.  It is a beautiful hand built canoe, a narrow passage 14, only 22 pounds, made by Mr.  Russell. For only $10 you can enter the raffle for a  $1400 canoe. If you have never heard of Yestermorrow, and you are interested in design and hand-built, you must check it out.

I have been working with Coach Sean Meissner at Sharmaulta for just about 4 weeks. My distance is increasing and the quality, fast running, is increasing even more. I had a few days of painful lower back, high hamstring which created undue anxiety and emotional stress that made me overall cranky but I ran 14 miles yesterday in a pretty relaxed state and feel good now.

All in all my goals are remaining S.M.A.R.T., I can measure progress and build all my other life events around it, like putting up an exhibition. I have an exhibition of printed and cut paper going up in Brooklyn at LIU, over the next 8 days and I have application out for grants and residencies to carry through to 2017. I feel like I am honing in on a few things and it feels pretty darn good.

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A month ago a friend was helping fund raise to send senior athletes from Taos country to the State Senior Olympic Games in Roswell. (yes the place of all the UFOs!). I  donated artwork to help raise money for the qualified athletes get to the games. Two days later I came home to an official looking form held down by a rock at my front door. It was an entry into the Senior Olympics. Wooaaaahhhhh, Senior Olympics, you must have gotten the wrong house.

Well my friends Senior Olympics start at age 50. Yes, 50, that scares and freaks the crap out of me. But two encounters about the games in a week from two very different people, hell, why not listen. There was a phone number on the paper, I called and talked to Carol, an extremely exuberant women (a friend of a friend of a friend) who said, “Hilary, you have to sign up immediately, the forms are due now drive it to the city office building today”, a 45 mile round trip. I did. I met he head of recreation for the county and he too was wildly enthusiastic. He said they have 2 workouts a week, the county fully supports the program. They will bus us to Roswell for the State Games and there was a meeting on Sunday about the regional qualifiers.  Okay, I signed up for the 800, 1500, and 5k. I may do the 10k.  I have the opportunity to learn and practice a bunch of other stuff; shotput, javelin, airgun, high jump, long jump. But I would probably hurt myself and not be able to run.

At Sunday’s meeting I met the other runners,  it was all men. But they told me I must contact Michelle. She is one of their stars. She is 6  or 7 years older than me but ran a 44:51 10K in the 50-54 AG at State.  My best 10k is 45:48. and that 44:51 is the state record. I feel a challenge coming on. ( it is still at a higher elevation race which will slow me down) I checked the National Records for the 5k. I have always wanted to run a fast 5k, but I have not done training specific for that. The National record is 18:55, I will never see that. But I can get to the top 10, the slowest is 21:20. National Games are not until 2017, qualify in 2016. I will also represent NM.

After slogging around the last three months trying to make my long runs, it was not happening, and I am not running Boston this year. On  Friday I got in my first track workout in over 8 months, 10 x 200 with 200 rest, Saturday 5 miles EZ, Saturday, Sunday 1.67 mile warm-up followed by 2:00 fast, 1:00 slow to very slow x 9. This was done on rolling, mostly uphill roads at 6200 ft. I woke up today, excited to do another  run. I am excited to run again. I want to run short and fast. I want to race. Friday I am running with Michelle. We will coordinate our training for state. I want to see UFOs.

Senior Olympics? Bring it on! My next chapter in life, compete for 50 freakin’ years! That is my next life goal.

That is me on the left, I took great pride in beating the two lovely ladies with the really nice bellies on the right. They too could be at the senior Olympics! I want to feel that rush of running short and hard again. And I will. And I will be back in NYC for the 5th Avenue Mile 2015, sub 6:00.

Fifth Avenue Mile

Fifth Avenue Mile

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Carls Meadow

Carls’ Meadow

Is that right, the end of week three? Right now I am too tired to get up and check my log. I am not tired because I ran hard today, in fact I did not run, I printed.  It is not a bad thing that I missed my weekend long run, though it is hard to consider 9 miles long. But it is when you have a quad that does not fire.  I will run the 9 or maybe 10 tomorrow on my “rest day” I am not too concerned. I got in my other days.

Yesterday I had a magnificent time snow shoeing at the Santa Fe Ski Basin with my friend Lisa. More specifically we started at Aspen Vista Trailhead,  shoed up the Windsor Trail past the ski lifts, made a loop into the creek bed and back down and round to the Aspen Vista Road.  We started at 9,900 ft of altitude and climbed to 11,427 in 1.83. That is steep. We hiked for almost four hours,  at times we were up to our hips in snow.  It was great.

My runs are getting  better. No longer am I walking or running backward for 1:00 after every 2:00 of forward. I reduced it to 30 seconds. Also I ran 3 miles on Thursday without any turn around. That made me feel great! My quad is freezing up less and most of my run pace is close to 8:00 miles.

Today I had a big day of printing which is why I did not run. I was in the studio all day working on my 30 prints in 30 days series and just ran out of daylight to run.

Next Sunday I have a 3.8 mile snow shoe race. That should be interesting, running in snow shoes at 10,000 ft of elevation.   This will be like Elmer Fudd chasing Rabbit in slow motion.

I am taking bets at how long it will take me to complete this. My most recent marathon time is 3:49 (April 2014) best x-c time 22:30, 10k time 45:30, all at sea level. Whoever comes closest to how long it take me gets their choice of print from my 30 prints in 30 days project which you can read about here. Remember you want to win a print, not worry about hurting my feelings. There will be no ego in trying to complete 3.8 miles of running in snowshoes at over 10,000 ft. For reference the fastest male  in 2014 was 33:46, fastest female 43:25. I am going to try out the trail on Wednesday, and hope I can complete it in under an hour. Wish me luck.

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In addition to having one of my best Christmas’s ever I had a perfect week of Boston marathon training. A Christmas brunch with 12 great friends, delicious food and an exchange of hand made gifts was followed by a delightful sunset run. In fact I had 6 delightful runs all between 3 and 8 miles each, plus two nights of rowing and 5 days of strength and/or flexibility training. It is minimal mileage and it is the plan I used in 2007 for my first marathon after not running for 20 years and that plan qualified me for Boston.

While I am qualified for Boston again, my right quad is only letting me run 2:00 walk 1:00 but this week I added a twist. I began walking the 1:00 backward and by the end of the week I was jogging the 1:00 backward, not only am I getting my front in shape I am getting my back in shape. I am also getting a lot of strange looks from the neighbors.

I think I know what is wrong with my leg, nothing. It is not my IT that has been bothering me these last three years, it is the femoral nerves  impingement. This would explain my right quad shutting down. To test this out I am doing a series of femoral nerve flossing like in this video:

Next week I will let you know how it goes. If all goes well I will reduce my 1:00 backward jogging to 30 seconds. Until then, happy running!

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Boston Training Time

I have barely run in six months. I spent the last three shuttling between my exhibitions in Kansas, New Jersey, and New York. The three before that working in the studio day and night. Additionally, this month I emptied out my Manhattan apartment to facilitate its imminent sale. Here I am, in the first week of Boston Marathon Training having run less than 20 miles in the past month. Two problem, 1. Not running  2. The ongoing, three-year injury, if you can still call it that, where the middle of my IT Band freezes up every time I try to run  up  even the slightest hill. It has become  depression to the point of wanting to quit all together. I have had so much physical therapy that I could pay for my PT’s kid’s Ivy league education. So today I made a decision, and a very good one, beginning with no more PT.

I have always scoffed at walk./running. (never scoff at anything because that guarantees one day it will be you!) But I thought, I have an 8 mile run, longer than I have run since August. It could be really slow and painful, or I could run 2:00 and walk 1:00 for the whole 8 miles. Why would I do this? Well, instead of slogging about for 8 miles and possibly walking home in the cold with little HR or muscle training, if I alternate I just may actually have a faster pace in the running section, then in the walking section give my leg a rest, and maybe reprogram my body from feeling this pain. (I never feel the leg pain when walking, snowshoeing, rowing, hiking or any other activity. When I do feel it during a run, it stops immediately when I stop).

For a little background, while I did not have on my heart rate monitor today, it would have worked in what Coach Roy Benson call’s heart rate fartlek. To build base and improve endurance, after one calculated their 60% and 75% maximum heart rate, you start running until your HR reached 75%, then back off until it goes down to 60% then go back up and so forth. You can pick up speed faster after your slow period, yet it is relatively short so there is no lactic acid build up and you build a nice base and less prone to injury. After years of running I know what both those heart rated feel like and while I was using time rather than HR, it was pretty close to the same result.

Guess what didn’t happen and guess what did happened? What did not happen was my leg never froze up. It was the first time in almost three years my right side did not cease in the first mile or on the uphill. And second, you guessed it, my run selections became faster as I went along, in the last four miles, about 25 seconds faster than marathon pace. I was delighted.

By walking one minute I loosened up my hips, but being only one minute, I kept my HR at a decent level and it allowed me to run faster but with an overall longer workout time. On a really good day, I would run 8 miles in 64 minutes, (not racing just running)  I have not had one of those days for a very long time. On a bad day, I may not even finish. But today, walking for one minute after every two minutes, I exercised for 84 minutes. In fact, I like stretching out my mileage over a longer period of time, while running faster. This is going to be a very interesting training season and I am going to feel good about it! I already can’t wait until tomorrow.

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Hilary Lorenz at Wave Hill, NY

Hilary Lorenz at Wave Hill, NY

I was reminded today how little I  update my blog. This is true, but while I have not been updating this one, I have been updating my new art website blog at hilarylorenz.wordpress.

Mostly my excuse is that I have not been running, but rather making art, a lot of art, over 4,000 prints in the last few months to be exact. But now all my shows are up and I am hanging around NYC promoting them and running. Yes, I got back to running again. It is crazy how fast I can get of shape and quite frankly it is a lot more fun to run an 8:00 pace with a 150HR than a 9:30 pace with a 150HR. But that is my reality right now.

Last night I took my dog Homer and jogged 6 miles through the Bronx Streets and  into Van Cortlandt Park. It was completely dark, no street lights, warm but with a very cool fog lifting off the fields. I really needed a headlight as I could not see four feet in front of me, but oh I really loved it and I think Homer did too.

Plans for the next couple of months include, selling my NYC apartment, going to Northern Ontario for an art’s residency, closing my exhibitions at Wave Hill, NY and the Printmaking Center of NJ on December 7, closing my show at the Gallery at Pioneer Bluffs after a reception on December 12, then hunkering down in Abiquiu, NM until next August. And who knows if the stars align I might just stay out there in the high desert. Oh and I am in two holiday sales, where I will have a boat load of hand printed journals, one in Brooklyn and one in Los Alamos, NM. I will also post some here.

Happy Fall.

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USATF XC BoulderEach year when I see the cross country championship listed I want to run, but I don’t sign up. Each year I also think that I want to train specifically for xc since it is my favorite race. This year I finally signed up, but I did not train specifically for the race. In fact with all the snow and cold in NYC, my training is not great.

My friend Mardi moved to Boulder in October from NYC  and since I cannot make any trip unless I have multiple reasons to go, this was perfect.  I also fantasize a lot about living in Boulder, running out my back door into the mountains with  my dogs, chilling out all day in flannel  drinking coffee and making prints in my storefront studio. Now I get to see what Boulder, the fittest city in the country really feels like.

The championships are run in several heats, women separate from men, masters, juniors and seniors all separate. Of the masters AG mine is the largest, the 45-49 year olds. I almost chickened out when I looked up the other’s 5k times, they range from 17:00 to 20:00 and the higher end times are at altitude. For longer races most run around a 39:00-42:00 10k. my PB is 45:00.  The exception to that would be Colleen de Rueck who at 49 ran  a 2:39 marathon, 1:23 half and 38:00 10k last year. She is still one of the fastest women around. With the $35,000 in prize money, the best will be coming out. Jenn Simpson is running, I can’t wait to watch her in the senior heat.

My plan for the race; Get to bed early, eat a good breakfast, run as fast as I possibly can and be thankful that I get to participate in such a rewarding sport. Okay, I will still be self critical but  I am aware that I am self critical and I am also aware at how lucky I am to be able to run my ass off around the country.

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