Hoofing It at the Horsetooth Half

Racetime Rundown:

  • Date: April 23, 2017
  • Time: 8:30am
  • Start: Hughes Stadium, Fort Collins, CO
  • Views: Pure Colorado
  • Course: Challenging. Rewarding. Net Downhill
  • After Party: New Belgium Brewing
  • Prize Purse: $4,000

This year will be the 44th anniversary of the Horsetooth Half Marathon. This scenic 13.1 mile trek is not only one of the most beautiful, it’s also the oldest in the state of Colorado!

horsetooth-pic
Top 10 Reasons to Run the Horsetooth Half 2017

10. 44th Anniversaries don’t happen every day.
9. Your New Years Resolution needs this.
8. The 500′ Monster Mountain is in the first 2 miles.
7. It’s all downhill from there.
6. #7 is not literal, but you’ve totally got this.
5. Music…on course, of course!
4. Voted Best Half in the Rocky Mtn. Region by Competitor, 2016.
3. $4K Cash Purse
2. BEER by New Belgium, for when you don’t win the $4,000.
1. You can join me :: AND my little brother – a horse of another, coming soon.

Now that I’ve convinced you, you’re going to want to start training – it helps.
Don’t worry, GnarRunners have thought of everything: Full Training Plan

 

Wondering what’s up with the horse theme this season? Me too.

photo: GnarRunners
#HorsetoothHalf #GnarRunners

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Dashingly Dirty

It’s dashing and it’s dirty…it’s the Dirty Dash and it’s coming to a location near you. Well, maybe not. That depends on where you’re at BUT it’s coming to a location near me! Can you say #TeamFineS’Wine!

S'Wine

Intimidating, I know. Fear not…this race is great for all skill levels AND you can whoop it up for the cam an we’ll never know how many pits and obstacles you decided to tiptoe around. As for team Fine S’Wine, well, let’s just say there *was* blood, oh ya.

411 Recap from last yr? Here: 411 Recap from last yr.
Photo Journal? Here:
Photo Journal.

What’s the chapstick first aid about you ask? Well, let’s just say — that Fine S’Wine wasn’t a Boy Scout 😉

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Get the scoop on this year’s muddy mess…and start training now! Beer, mud, more beer, friends. Yep. That’s it. You’re in! Oh, camera. Check.

 

ColorCoatedGnar’s Favs @ColorMeRad

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If pummeling your friends with powdered color bombs and getting hosed down by perfect strangers armed with liquid color spray are your idea of a good time, then this is the 5K for you! What I love most about these silly themed, untimed races – um, besides the silly theme and the fact that it’s untimed – is that they’re ideal for beginner runners…aka: my five-year-old, whom raced via piggyback for most of this one #mommyworkout

Top Favs and/or Least Favs:

Blue boogies – two days worth, yum
Uber blue bath water – and the ring it left behind
The blue glow on our skin – three showers later!
Can you say #PhotoOp? (yes, in shades of blue)
Blue stain – how is it that the entire rainbow of colors we encountered = blue?

The Radical Art of Corn Starch

We’ve talked MuD RuN, TrI AtHAlON, 5K, HeALtHy TRadITioNs and TrYiNG SoMEthiNg NeW…so, I think it’s only fitting that we take a closer look at one of the newest, craziest, most colorful races available in our state ~ COLOR ME RAD!!! Um, can you say #PhotoOp?

This 5K incorporates an array of vibrant explosions of blue, green, pink, purple and yellow along the course (so don’t think you’re going to take that short cut and not be found out!). As you come to the finish line, coated in rainbows of 3.1 miles of pure success and adrenaline, prepare yourself to finish out that last bit of unbridled, passionate aggression – as you pummel your friends and family with handfuls of beautifully crafted, colorful cornstarch (kids, this is your chance at letting your parents know how you really feel about limited game time and the crackdown on sugary snacks.)

As if finishing this 5K wasn’t enough, just think about your new, wayyy seriously cool image as your co-workers view your epic profile photo – dripping in the evidence of a seriously awesome race – come Monday morning. Oh ya.

“This is the royal rumble of color. Every 15 – 20 minutes everyone will grab handfuls of color and pummel each other until you’re black and blue (from corn starch – no real bruising will occur). There will be music, food, and sponsors welcoming you across the finish line with open arms. Hugs are free and just like any good AA meeting, spectators are welcome.”

I know…you’re still wondering one thing: how did they make the vintage term “Rad” hip again?

“Unlike Communism and my late Uncle Steven, “Rad” has survived the fall of the Soviet Empire, the scrutiny of the SEC and Webster’s Dictionary, heart disease, and the disdain of high school students everywhere. Like an old vinyl record, it was lost in common practice and parlance and has now reemerged as the vanguard for everyday nomenclature amongst babies, toddlers, teens, and business execs.”

Ok, so you’re preety much convinced, right!? BUT, you did just drain your FSA account on those fancy new frames and top-shelf contact lenses…and it could get dangerous out there. Precautionary concerns ARE legitimate, and guess what…they thought of that too!

“Using the same tactics you use protect your “special parts” from the sun and wanton eyes. Clothing, for starters, works wonders for keeping your skin as soft, supple, and as unseen as a baby’s backside. Goggles, glasses, shirts, shorts, shoes, cooking aprons, hospital gowns, or radiation suits can be worn to protect you from the frequent blasts of color from Color Me Rad, and any stray UV rays from holes in the ozone overhead.”

No doubt you have several other questions and concerns – check out the Color Me Rad round up of FAQs and gain a true appreciation for the seriousness and professionalism of this event.

*This race is NOT timed (aka: shame-free), children 7 and under run FREE (but won’t receive a shirt), all ages welcome*

Color Me Rad will take place Denver Botanic Gardens at Chatfield on September 29th and benefits the YMCA of Denver. Expect to be coated in color every 5 minutes following the 9 a.m. start time.

[Coming soon via Mile High Mamas: ENTER TO WIN … FREE Color Me Rad registration for two!]

Reach for the Sky(hawks) at this Sports Academy

The more you sweat in practice, the less you bleed in battle.

Ok, so that may *not* be the essence of children’s sports camp…but it does make for a good pep talk, right!?

This summer Noelle will be participating in her first sports camp sampler – a week-long Mini-Hawk program including lessons in soccer, baseball AND basketball – this being her preference to camp options (that her mom might have tried to promote with gentle persuasion – to no avail) including volleyball, tennis and cheerleading (maybe it’s my misguided pep talk, eah?). Hey, at least the girl knows what she wants, lol!

Skyhawks Sports Academy is not only reasonably priced, they have over 10 different types of sports camps in over 250 Cities across the US for ages 3 – 12. I was excited to see that “our” camp option of choice was offered at a park within biking distance from our home…which means I’ll be waking that other sweetheart of mine up early and politely requesting that he try to smile as we ride alongside our little sister to her first-ever summer camp experience – he’s going to love this too, wink!

So, why enroll your child in a Skyhawk sports camp this summer? Hmmm…

10. Parental Down-Time
9. Good Reason to Turn the TV Off
8. Fresh Air and Sunshine
7. Adorable Photo Op
6. Skill Building Teamwork
5. Exposure to New Ideas
4. Healthy Social Interaction
3. Physical Fitness – Prevent Childhood Obesity
2. Something to Fall Back On #failedacademics
1. For Future Success in Mid-Life Adult Alternative Sports
*Did I mention PaREnTaL DoWNtImE!?!?*

Prepare your child for a future career as a professional athlete…or just provide them with the skills to become a killa mid-life adult sports hobbyist!!!

Skyhawks Sports Academy website includes a full listing of programs offered, safety information and detailed information on the premise of the company. Check out this VIDEO for a glimpse of what this summer camp looks like.

Skyhawks Sports Academy offers week-long sports camps for children between the ages of 3 and 12. Since 1979, over 1.5 million children have attended a Skyhawks Sports Camp. For over 30 years, Skyhawks has been committed to providing a safe, fun and skill-based experience for kids.

 

The Art of Laughter…and Courage to Try Again

I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it. ~Pablo Picasso

If I fail to instill all else in my children, I hope to leave a legacy of insatiable passion and eagerness for life. With that, the courage, determination and faith to follow the unique and wonderful will intended specifically for my children’s lives. Through example, I hope to demonstrate that if we believe, we can achieve.

You’ll always miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. ~Wayne Gretzky

It can be difficult to take a chance at something new, particularly because the likelihood that it will not go as planned is, well, quite likely. With that, I say – throw caution to the wind (in that level-headed, commonsense kinda way…aka: wear a helmet) – if you succeed, you will be forever grateful; if you fail, you might actually learn a little something along the way! “Of all the people I have ever known, those who have pursued their dreams and failed have lived a much more fulfilling life than those who have put their dreams on a shelf for fear of failure.” ~Author Unknown

A fellow blogger and good friend of mine recently posted a catalog of her main achievements over the past several months. As I pondered this, I realized how much of what we do as parents directly affects our children’s actions and choices. It’s one thing to encourage our children to feel confident and follow their dreams, but it’s a whole different kind of parenting to push our own limits to exemplify this type of behavior.

I was pleasantly surprised, as I looked back at this past year, to discover several laughable but achieved risks…and a couple that didn’t go quite as planned ~ surely I (and hopefully my children) learned a good lesson in those endeavors as well. In all of my attempts, I hope to have provided a positive example of determination.

An entertaining glimpse at some of what I found…

Dabbling in Home Improvement:

After reading an inspiring DIY success story, I was sure I could revamp a couple of mundane walls in our home. The bedroom stenciling went rather well and I learned a thing or two about measurement and patience too.

So, when a family member convincingly suggested a DIY exterior paint job, I was in. This one took wayyyy longer than anticipated, but in the end, we had serious bragging rights – and the insight to never, ever take on this level of DIY again, lol.

My kitchen decor got a bit more creative, much to the demise of the entire project. The white was a bit too light, so I added shadow brushes here and there – which was artsy and attractive in the daylight – and made the wall look dirty as the sun went down. Oh well, just a good reason to close the kitchen at dusk, right?

Endeavors In Ocean Sports:

During a recent trip to Virginia Beach, I was able to try three water sports I have always wanted to try…and with the expert instruction of professionals.

Ocean kayaking *with the dolphins* was nothing short of amazing…a fabulous way to tour the coastline and view the glorious Virginia Beach sunset. Favorite challenge: surfing the waves back to shore. Favorite benefit: chiseled upper body (ok, so I might need more than one outing for that!).

Paddleboarding is one of my new favorite sports – and one I can pursue in Colorado! The sea nettle (a type of jellyfish) lurking below the water’s surface at this Virginia Beach location made the whole experience that much more daring! Earned my bravery badge.

 

I learned to surf. Yep, it’s official…not professional, but well on my way, wink. I can’t say I actually know how to catch a wave without the guidance of my knowledgeable instructor, BUT I did get up on that board and land gracefully (a few times) without guzzling salt water. My one inquiry: what does all that ocean water do to one’s sodium intake levels!?

Along my personal journey of trying new things, I’ve found it of utmost importance to be able to laugh at myself. Allowing grace in failure provides me the confidence I need to pursue unknown adventures. Sometimes I surprise myself in what I can achieve…and other times I just get a really good giggle! In all of it, my children have a role model to look to as they come to the point of their lives when they ask themselves, “Shall I try something new?”…and knowing that they have a choice…find the confidence to step out, risk it all and take the opportunity.

Never be afraid to try something new. Remember, amateurs built the ark; professionals built the Titanic. ~Author Unknown

Dirty Dash for FREE & Compete Against Team Fine sWine!!!

What is team Fine sWine?…what is The Dirty Dash?…and how do I score a freebie, right!? Well, lemme fill ya in!

Team Fine sWine  {legit team name gratis creative member/co-captain Melissa}
Fine sWine is the uber-talented, fabulous foursome we have assimilated for the upcoming Dirty Dash in Colorado Springs, CO on August 11th. Yep, I gathered three of my most athletic friends (ok, so none of us have *actually* competed in a mud OR obstacle race, two members are new to the whole idea of running – without vice trailing close behind – and one is only agreeing to this because rumor has it there might be a beer [rootbeer option] chug along the course…ya, be intimidated!). After carefully selecting my team, I passed along the specific training advice I received from the event coordinators: Get up, walk around and do some stuff. Sit back down. We so have this in the bag!

The Dirty Dash
Um, just about the most epic, cool race to roll through the Rockies this summer…and it’s family friendly too!!! This 3.5 mile competition includes walls, pipes, nets, slip ‘n slides – YES, I said slip ‘n slides!!! – and all kinds of other dirty, muddy challenges to help you prove to yourself *and those around you* that age (and the nearing mid-life spare tire) is not going to deter you from being a champion at your sport!

The FREEBIE
All this and a chance to win TWO FREE RACE REGISTRATIONS!?!? Life doesn’t get much better than this. K, so just LIKE WineGlasSlipper’s NicestMomBlog on FB (clear the dust from the button) or FOLLOW me on Twitter (love Twitter btw) for your chance to be selected as the lucky winner AND to compete first hand against the killa Fine sWine. (Just know: we are training as you read! Be afraid.)

Fine Print: Winner will be chosen on or by July 1, 2012. Registration details, race information and official rules (excluding freebie – prefectures WineGlasSlipper – complements Dirty Dash staff) available at TheDirtyDash.com. Winner will receive notification and registration code via email/direct message. Not responsible for injuries inured prior to, during or following the dash – including but not limited to: emotional distraught over failure to win a free registration, failed attempt at proper training procedure, lack of creativity in team name formulation or rightful intimidation by the daunting competition (aka: Fine sWine).

Triathlete Training for Moms

There is something amazingly invigorating about a 750 meter swim, 20K bike ride and 5K run, competing alongside some 600 participants…and the achievement of being able to claim the title of “triathlete” (even at a sprint distance!).

It wasn’t the sport that held the draw for me; nor the physical benefits – though rather advantageous after having two wonderful kiddos! Personally, I was intrigued with the conquest…and comforted by the distraction.

Life trials are inevitable and while I would mostly prefer to avoid them at all costs, I do recognize and accept the fact that they will, eventually, lead to improved character, buffing me into a better person so long as I persevere the course – knowing when to press forward and when to coast along to catch my breath – recognizing along the way the truth that I am not the one ultimately in control of it all.

Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear. ~Ambrose Redmoon

Fear…it’s an interesting emotion. An inhibiting feeling that, in the absence of, may result in amazing achievements far surpassing human understanding and probability. Disposing of this useless, yet persistent, annoyance is – what I believe to be – the first step in conquering the end goal.

I suppose this is the reason I chose to take my life’s frustrations onto the track, bike, and – since the swim is mandatory for this particular race – into the pool (or the lake on race day, ugh). In the summer of 2010, along with my astoundingly supportive little sis, I (WE!) earned the title of “triathlete.” Thankfully, the triumph was accomplished simply by crossing that finish line, regardless of speed or grace – which is good because we finished our first tri on our MoUNtaIn BiKeS!

I can’t make claim that I excel in any of the three events, that I have superior equipment or more than adequate training – I am, after all, a mom with a bit more to do (and spend time/money on) than my hobbies. Which is exactly how I came to discover that moms can be triathletes too. Not only can we be great athletes ~ we have been in training since day one and didn’t even know it! Yep, all that lugging of the bucket seat, chasing after that toddler and piggy back riding when little legs get too tired to walk on their own has sparked an inner athlete that need but only to be directed and perfected for the sport.

It’s as simple as that: keep doing what you’re doing and have fun with it! Practicing the specific skills is an important element too, but can often be accomplished with kids in tow. Of course, some kid swapping is helpful – especially for sanity, but absolutely take the opportunity to instill the love of physical activity and the great outdoors with your children.

The Swim:

While admittedly lacking, my training in this area is often accomplished as my children splash around – under the direct supervision of a lifeguard on duty – in the children’s pool at our recreation center. When they were younger, they required one-on-one attention, which made swimming more complicated – I would either use the gym nursery or swap workouts with a friend. Even a day at the pool teaching kiddos simple skills and having fun helped me gain confidence in the water, so never pass up the opportunity to jump in!

The Bike:

Biking with little ones is surprisingly convenient – and enjoyable – once you are prepared with the right equipment. Over the years, I have used various bike attachments for my kids. I have found inexpensive equipment at yard sales or used sporting equipment stores, which is nice because they do grow out of these rather quickly. My favorite gear so far has been our bike trailer – not only because I can still squeeze both kids into it at ages 8 and 5 (but now they fight…and it’s a tight fit, ha) but because it converts into a jogger as well. I love the dual purpose.

We have made it a morning tradition to either walk or bike to school – works for us because the school is just around the corner, but it assures a little fresh air and reminder for the importance of activity in our day.

The Run:

Running is my absolute favorite form of exercise…but that was not always the case. It hurts. Honest but true…however, the pain does subside with training, and when it does, the sport is quick, affordable and majestically beautiful in our lovely state. I think it’s one of the best health-conscious family activities Colorado has to offer – well, maybe second to skiing, wink.

Using a jogger or convertible trailer during training will make your 5K feel like a walk in the park! A smart mom gave me the tip of keeping restlessness at bay by offering up a favorite snack while you’re out on the trail…because you might find yourself too winded to use the reliable parenting tactic of lecturing, yelling and the like.

The Tri:

Putting all three activities into a single event is trying indeed, but most certainly not beyond that of carrying a child for nine months, giving birth (ok, so I admittedly had cesarean sections…but hey, that wasn’t easy stuff either!) and absolutely not a challenge beyond that of being a mother – on the clock every hour, every moment of every day. When it begins to feel like too much, add hydration, quick caloric energy and undeniable confidence and determination…you will soon find yourself crossing that finish line…and on to the next quest!

I’ve got a theory that if you give 100 percent all of the time, somehow things will work out in the end. ~Larry Bird

 

 

Why Pink is the New Green…

GREEN. It’s one of my very favorites and I use it everywhere I can – clothing, linens, toiletries, house paint, handbags…yes, quite liberally, with really just one exception: my thumbs. So, come March 17, I’m generally safeguarded from the random, traditional pinch. However, this year, I’m risking it all, putting a little spin on things and going out on a limb (or three owls on a tree branch – to be exact) for my GREEN InITiaTIvE…oh, in a lovely shade of PINK!

Read more @ Mile High Mamas: “Healthy Holiday Traditions and Why Pink is the New Green”