Martini Fridays: A Tribe? A Klatch? An Exaltation?

What a difference two weeks can make.

While I’d be the last to suggest my bad winter attitude has entirely lifted — I think I’ve merely achieved the acceptance phase of grief —I have been in a hippier, happier head space since we last “spoke.”

Partly, my improved attitude grew out of pretty great 8 mile run on Sunday before last. Keeping my heart rate down felt almost effortless and my body felt as sprightly as a 40+ year old body can in the middle of February. I remain amazed that 7 miles can feel like a slog through a soul-sucking swamp one week and 8 can feel like a gentle breeze through the palm trees the next. Bodies are weird.

I've taken to giving the Dumpster a high five when forced to do laps around the high school.
I've taken to giving the Dumpster a high five when forced to do laps around the high school.

My Susie-Sunshine-ness can also be chalked up to a step-back week. That 8 mile run was the most strenuous activity I’ve undertaken for the past few days. During last Monday’s snow day — about a foot of the white stuff felt overnight and I did my best to ignore it — I did yoga in my bedroom, which is something I used to do two or three times a week before I discovered running. I was so chill that I only snapped a little bit when the Tween came in while I was in pigeon pose to let me know how very, very bored she was. I suggested she clean her room, which was only met with scorn and derision. But she did storm off in a huff, which meant I could continue my practice in peace.

I made a note of how lovely that morning of yoga felt in my Training Peaks log. Coach Sara D. scheduled another one for this week. After 45 minutes of hip openers, my mood and my posture are much improved. I’ve been using videos from Eckhart Yoga, which someone at some point recommended and I bookmarked but I can no longer remember exactly who and when that was. Esther’s Nordic-yet-vaguely-Irish accent is soothing without being too relaxing and the poses are just challenging enough without being too hard. I also want to know what is behind the curtains in the hip-opening video but suspect I’ll have to live with the mystery.

Your mileage may vary, of course, on how helpful you find online yoga. I started practicing yoga shortly after my now 12-year old was born and have enough of a base that I’m not easily thrown by the Sanskrit. Besides, my first yogi was incredibly strict about form for his beginners — I might have used the phrase “Iyengar Dictator” a time or two — but I’m thrilled to learn that all of that information is still in my muscles.

Esther just radiates good health, doesn't she?
Esther just radiates good health, doesn't she?

I stopped doing yoga shortly after we moved to New York’s vast interior because I couldn’t find a new teacher I liked after my favorite local teacher wandered off on a vision quest and never came back. Seriously. People are interesting, aren’t they?

Regardless, it feels good to work through sun salutations, etc., again. Maybe if I do enough of them spring will come because I alone control the seasons.

This general upbeat-ness leaked into to my Saturday run. On the docket was a mere four miles. The first one was to be slow; then the next three fast as I could. Actually, what was really on the plan was a 5K race if I could find one, which cannot be done in this part of the world in February.   You’d have better luck finding a pot of gold under a rainbow right now than three relatively ice-free miles to stage a race on.

Thanks to a mostly Bruno Mars-based playlist, those four miles felt like no effort at all. I won’t say they were the fastest I’ve run, because that would be lying, but they might have been the easiest. At the end, the two walkers I kept passing on the indoor track gave me big props for how good I looked, which has never happened ever.

Also bringing my mood up is booking some running related travel for March. If the Boston-area manages to dig itself out by March 9, I’ll be joining SBS and Dimity in Andover for a party. Ditto March 10 in Syracuse. Knowing that I’ll be hanging with whatever-the-collective-noun-for-mother-runners-is can’t help but add a spring to my step.


I’m sure this pocket of cheer will pass; “Chipper” is not a word frequently applied to me. I’ve looked ahead to this weekend’s plan and am trying to figure out how I’m going to pull off seven miles when even daytime temps will likely be on the negative side of the number line. Can I keep it together during 56 laps on the indoor track? Or for 7 miles on the treadmill? Ugh. Neither options sounds pleasant yet it has to be done. What would you do, mother runners? And what collective noun should we use for an assembly of mother runners?

19 responses to “Martini Fridays: A Tribe? A Klatch? An Exaltation?

  1. I’m in the market for a new yoga instructor as well. (And yes, people are very interesting!) I stumbled on the Eckhardt videos after someone mentioned them on Strava. I’ve only done one so far, but I think it might be a so-so substitute for now.
    As for the upcoming run, I would run outside if at all possible. If it’s not, I’d brave the indoor track (I’m a bit jealous every time you mention it!). I hate treadmills, and feel really awkward on them…
    Good luck!

  2. I’d call them BAMRs (pronounced “bammers), but that’s just me. 🙂

    I truly don’t know how you LIVE up north, much less RUN up north. Here in Chattanooga we are having cold (read: 20s & 30s) temps with no precipitation, and I don’t want to go outside. lol

  3. Lindsey, I just know about the event b/c I signed up for it. I think the link was on an AMR FB post. Or maybe it is on the AMR website. It wasn’t a sign up at Fleet Feet. Good luck!

  4. Great! I’m there pretty regularly, so I will register and hopefully my BRF’s can come. If you want it posted to some local running groups, I can do that for you. (unless you are local and have already done that)

  5. As much as I hate doing long runs on the treadmill, I have one trick that always works for me: I save all of my magazines (i am a magazine junkie) , and ONLY read them when I am running. Ditto with cool podcasts. It gives me some sort of motivation to do 8-15 miles when I would much rather be out in the fresh air, but can’t due to negative wind chills or treacherous ice.

    What name to use to refer to my running group? Hmm…I will pose that question to my girls and get back to ya!

    Love your posts….you are very relatable 🙂 Much love!

  6. Lindsey
    It is Tues March 10, 6-8, at the 5800 Bridge Street Fleet Feet.
    I tried to post a link, but it didn’t work.
    It is a free event, but you need to pre-register.

  7. Another fabulous post! Personally, I’d run the track, at least the scenery changes. My first long run this training season is Sunday with 12 to 18 inches of snow falling, with fast winds and super cold temperatures. It looks like the 6 miles will be spent on the treadmill. How do people even do this? Looking forward to seeing you in March!! Thanks for the YOGA link!!

  8. Go outside and know that many of us will be running with you tomorrow in equally cold temps. If you have an actual “warm body” at your side to run with you, all the better but at least in spirit we’ll be there! Today, in MN, we have a mini warm up (read: it’s 16 outside) and I am not running today. But tomorrow my 8-9 miles will be when the windchill is supposed to be -27 (which should not even be a thing!). I’m counting on my phone freezing (how will I get my run on strava??) and my music freezing. But I’ll have 3 friends with me so in all honesty, I’m pretty lucky.

    An assembly of mother runners? A tribe, of course! Though there is something to be said for a “party”, too. Have a great run this weekend!

  9. Happy Martini Friday…just realized it’s also the 13th. Yup, quick mind.

    I’ve been rearranging my runs based on record snowfall and frigid temperatures in southern NH. I don’t belong to a gym or own a treadmill so I layer up, grab a crazy friend, and off we go. We have 14 miles on tap for tomorrow ahead of yet another foot of snow starting Saturday night into Sunday. I’ve decided that my April 12th PR goal race may or may not happen. I’ll still run it but it’s been to slick outside to do a good chunk of my speed work and tempo runs. Just trying to get the miles in any way I can.

    Looking forward to seeing you in Andover! Bring your snowpants.

  10. Faced with the same dilemma, I did 15 on my treadmill yesterday. A distance PR for me and the mill. I broke it up with walk breaks, taking the 15 miles one interval at a time, one mile at a time, one hour at a time- I’m slow, it took 3. I thought about splitting it up, but the thought of having to take off all the layers and get on the mill was daunting. Get a fan, music, iPad, lots of Nuun, and run to nowhere. Do what ya gotta do to make that display read 7. It was great mental training. Good luck with whatever you decide!

  11. First of all I always look forward to your posts! I always relate to them. So glad your feeling better:)

    I’ve got 8 this Sunday with a high of 1 and neg windchills. My plan is as many as I can handle outside, with my DH on standby to come rescue me. The rest will have to get done on the dreadmill.

  12. 1st- I am crazy excited when Friday morning brings Martini Friday to my e-mail!

    I am in the same boat right now, I have 18 on my schedule this week (Pittsburgh full training.) HOW to do that is getting more and more interesting. The drivers on the ever-narrowing roads don’t seemed too concerned about a random runner’s safety, and that many miles on the treadmill just seems insane. Last week for 16 I did most on the road, finished on the ‘mill. Thinking about some miles snow shoeing and finishing on the treadmill, tired of being adaptable this winter, at least cross-training is taken care of with snow shoveling.

    I like the ‘tribe’ of mother runners.

  13. I thought of “pride” as well. It makes me think of lionesses, as well as that feeling of accomplishment being a runner provides. Sprocket sounds fun.

    Currently -12, but it is supposed to get above zero and snow tomorrow before going back into the deep freeze. A little window of opportunity for outdoors running.

    Looking forward to seeing you in ‘Cuse.

  14. Should you opt for the treadmill, I shall offer my solidarity. Here in MI the temps are negative, with double digit negative wind chills throughout the weekend. Fire ‘er up!

  15. I have embraced the treadmill, but also am not opposed lately to running in the snow with my chains on. Maybe one mile outside and 6 inside?

    As for the collective noun “tribe” May have already been given by this community, but I also like the word “pride” because it is descriptive and “sprocket” because it is fun and sounds fast. That is the best I can do at 6 am!

  16. That’s great that your runs are feeling good again!

    As for your dilemma, I’d likely split if the track and treadmill are at the same place. 2 miles track, 3 treadmill, 2 track. If not, the track sounds like the lesser of the two evils.

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