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Leaving Neverland

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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Thu Sep 06, 2012 4:31 pm

Is the nutritional yeast a necessary ingredient? Since I'm not a vegan or even vegetarian, can I just used some real light ricotta with the tofu?? Nutritional yeast sounds as bad as the vegan mayo that I was teasing Kenny about.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Sep 06, 2012 5:05 pm

Mark - The toe strike requires concentration. In intervals #9 and #10, I lacked a little, and it showed.

Michele - That's what's going to make it taste like something. Yes, it sounds gross, but it's not yeast like most of us think of it. It adds a nutty, cheesy flavor to whatever it's in; however, it will NOT replace cheese on its own (meaning no mac&cheese with it!). Without it, you may as well ditch the tofu altogether, go ricotta and feel free to add in the garlic/basil to taste.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:29 pm

So... I ran today. But I have good reasons! What a Face

Realized that my idea to get up around 6am tomorrow and run before breakfast so I can make it to my 8am class just wasn't going to happen. So, what the hell, I'll just get in my 5mi today.

Glad I did. Had a lot of tightness to work out from yesterday. All in all, 5.12mi @ 8:00.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Sun Sep 09, 2012 8:33 pm

Michele, don't read this entry.

Had class from 8-5:30 yesterday. Longest Saturday class so far, but simultaneously the one that felt the shortest. I really enjoyed the subject matter, the challenge involved in the interpreting we were doing, and the professor's way of conducting the class. In brief, we got an introduction to telephone interpreting (interpreter and deaf person in the same room, interpreter making phone calls for deaf person to hearing clients/consumers/whatever), video interpreting (I and H in the same room, I making "calls" to D), video remote interpreting (D and H in the same room, I in another location on video with them), and video relay services (D using I to call H, all in different locations; I has video in front of him/her and headset to make phone calls). The last one is definitely the hardest, as it involves everything the telephone calls would but also adds the complication of turning a 3D language into a 2D medium (computer screen), which really does affect comprehension to a significant degree.

So, that was fun. And relevant, since Aileen's uncle works with a hospital group in the East Bay and has suggested that anytime I want a job doing VRI, I pretty much have it. Cool.

Anyway, after that I had planned to just take the night off, but the texts started pouring in from people in class so, of course, something had to happen. My buddy, Zach, and I decided to get a gathering going. Fast-forward through the part where Aileen is extremely disappointed that the one night she's not going out (in the last 3 weeks), I'm busy. Fast-forward through the part where this essentially kills the conversation on her end, leading to me fuming. Fast-forward through the part where as people start showing up and I crack my first beer, I get a text message saying, "I just feel like if things keep going like this, we're going to end." Fast-forward through a surprisingly fun night with just enough drinks to forget about that text message for a couple hours...

---

And a mild hangover this morning.

After an attempt to rehydrate and allow that initial feeling of "ugh" to go away, I laced up and headed out for an easy 7. As I may have expected, it wasn't smooth, but wasn't bad. Just running, plugging in the miles. Ended up averaging just sub-7:30 and nearly killing the remainder of my hangover in the process.

---

Which leads me to another one of my Mike's-been-thinking-too-much trains of thought:

I've probably already tainted the waters by mentioning that Aileen and I aren't doing so hot right now. While that's relevant to this train of thought, it's not the entire basis for it. Anyway, I've noticed that I've conditioned myself, through habit, to want something to mindlessly eat/drink at night. More often than not, I'd prefer it's either baked goods or beer, which makes me think it's somewhat chemical related, too. It's true, I find myself struggling with increasing... sadness? Seems like too strong of a word for it... from about 5pm onward. Right around the time, in my mind, I should be settling down from the day with my family, loved one cuddled against me, etc. Maybe loneliness is a better word. I just find that I'm suddenly no longer content with doing what I've been doing all day.

When I worked this summer, this feeling was partially abated due to the fact that I worked 8hrs, then ran, and by the time I got home I was pretty wiped. That, and I generally came home to Aileen or my family. But now that I'm up here in Sac again, with a very small (albeit growing) social network, I find that this habit is coming back.

I think I'm looking for something to pass the time. If I sit and mindlessly eat/drink long enough, eventually it will be bedtime and I can sleep with a slight buzz from sugar/alcohol/whatever.

So, I'm looking to you, trusted 365ers and adults with more life experience than me, for guidance. Every morning, I feel confident to take on the day, and I'm generally quite happy throughout... until 5 or 6pm. I'm looking for a job, I have plenty of hobbies - I just never want to do them once I start feeling down - and running doubles is out of the picture (though I think it'd be a great sort of replacement therapy). Halp?
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Julie on Sun Sep 09, 2012 9:05 pm

Hi Mike,

If you're struggling in the evenings, which I definitely have had experience with, I recommend making a list of things you could do. I did that when I was in grad school and still single. Some of them were really mundane, like vacuum, set up coffee for the next morning, or something like that. I remember one year in grad school I realized I was eating in the evenings to procrastinate working on projects or studying, too. I don't recommend running more, although once in awhile it might work, running really isn't the answer for everything and you don't want an injury. Although, if you're not doing a hobby because you're feeling too sad, that sounds like the beginnings of depression which, IME, is easier to take care of in the beginning stages than to let it get too deep. Do you have a friend who would want to hang out an evening or two a week? Or even getting out of the house and going to a library or something can be helpful. Sometimes I think evenings are harder too if you're busier throughout the day and have more time to introspect in the evenings and get down about quite a few things.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mark B on Mon Sep 10, 2012 12:15 am

It also sounds like a bit of loneliness and homesickness, as well. What about planning in regular Skype of FaceTime sessions? Words are fine, but face-to-face is better.

If you find yourself veering into bad habits in the evening hours, why not shift your runs back to the late afternoon/evening and just sleep a little more in the morning? That way you end your day on a satisfying, productive note... and you probably end up with more (and better quality) sleep. That's what I did in the years I was on my own. You also get to run any of the day's aggravations out of your system. Don't discount that benefit.

Failing that, start reading the classics in the evening. I read War and Peace, Dante's Divine Comedy (Inferno, Purgatorio, Paradiso) and a bunch of other "high quality" literature, and really enjoyed it. (Okay, I coudn't make it through Crime and Punishment, but hey... it's Dostoyevsky, what do you expect?) Expand your brain rather than shriveling your liver. You might need both some day. Wink
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Michael Enright on Mon Sep 10, 2012 9:12 am

Really good advice so far. A twist on Mark's literary advice - one year I alternated reading a classic with reading a current trashy novel. I loved that! I read Moby Dick that way (hated it) and War and Peace (loved it). I also read a few trashy novels, which was kind of fun.

Get out to places where there are people and things to do more than you are, and that don't involve beer. You are way too social to be holed up in your apartment and depressed. There must be other stuff going on around there that would interest you. I like the skype idea, too. That attention, whether you think you have anything to converse about at the moment or not, is crucial to the relationship.

The fact that you are thinking about it and talking about it is a really good sign!
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Mon Sep 10, 2012 10:53 am

Sorry, Mike - I read the entry. And I have no words of wisdom except that I can totally relate right now. I have moved to a new city where the only people that I know from before are runners, and well, I can't really run yet. My hubby travels a lot and he is gone most weeks and weekends leaving me to myself. I also work from home - so it is just me and the dog. That was fine when my daughter was around, as she used to come home every day around 4:30-5 and we would talk for 20 min or so and then have dinner, but now she is at school, and I am here alone.

I, too, am struggling a bit with what to do with myself instead of sitting around watching TV and eating and drinking. I've already shifted my abbreviated running schedule to the later afternoon (I find that 70-80F is beautiful along the lake when the humidity is lower than I've run in for years), and I tend to go out after I run and sit on the deck and read a magazine or book - so like Steve and Mark suggested. Not sure what I'll do once the snow flies, but by then, I hope my husband's schedule will have slowed, I'll be running more, and I'll have met some people here. I did join a "fitness" class that meets here where I live on M and W mornings at 8:30, so that should help. (I found that even with my injury, I'm pretty fit and no one in the class believed my age).

So I guess what I'm saying, Mike, is that we will get through this together and we won't slide into the abyss. It is hard for both of us now in different, but similar ways. So this board will help us get through, right?
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Mon Sep 10, 2012 12:31 pm

Feeling all warm and fuzzy from these responses; it's good to know that there are a few lurkers out there, and that you all seem to have pretty keen minds and life experiences. What a Face

I guess I gave the impression that I hole up on most nights, when in fact, it's about 50/50. Not that the nights I'm alone I'm hermiting, just that I get lonely. I mean, just this last week I was with friends Monday, Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday. Not nearly as bad as it was last year, when it was just me... After all, I chose my current place because there are up to 4 other people here at any given time, and two of them are very social. I'm just the proverbial mouse with his cookie. I want lots of cookies. I find this metaphor to be very appropriate.

Anyway, I very much enjoy the advice you've all given me. Part of my recent nightly return to sweets and drinks is, as I mentioned, they help me get to sleep. I often find it hard to really settle down without something in my system, and often find myself thinking about that enough to warrant preemptive action. Funny that Mark and Michael should suggest reading, as before I moved up here, I made it my goal to actually get through Infinite Jest (3rd try) this semester. I think I'm going to limit myself to reading it only after 5-6pm so that it's my go-to for winding down. After tossing and turning for about 30min last night, I did pick it up and get through a chapter before finally giving in and telling my roommate to please turn down whatever the hell he's watching (I said this very politely, and I guess I have no right to be mad, since I've never said anything about it before; it's just that he starts watching these loud-ass videos at like 10pm every night...) and was able to sleep pretty soundly.

I also took to heart Julie's suggestion of setting up my coffee-maker (stove-top espresso percolator that just so happened to run out of leftover coffee yesterday) as well as cooking up this week's batch of beans that I'd been soaking and really didn't want to deal with.

Still, fish tacos are missing a certain something without beer.

So I guess I'm cautiously optimistic about really committing to this new trend. I find that the first couple weeks of a habit are the hardest - duh - but that by the end of week 3 I'm generally pretty set in it.

---

5.5mi planned this morning, ended up with 5.7 or so. Easy peasy pace, since I've got a very tough - and scary - workout tomorrow. 6x 1mi @6:00. Eep. Funny that I always find the hilly neighborhoods on my recovery runs... Oh well.

Wish me luck on tomorrow; after my last 10k pace workout, I'm kind of nervous. We'll see.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Tue Sep 11, 2012 1:13 pm

Another successful night of no mindless vices. Had planned to head to a pizza place down the street from school for a Deaf social - these are pretty common events in which the Deaf community gathers at a coffee/fro-yo/pizza place and chats. This one was Monday night football, so I figured it'd be fun. Turns out everyone had more or less left by the time Zach and I got there, so he just ordered a pizza to go and we headed back to my place.

Man, every time I take a bite of pizza, it gets better and better. I think I may have given in on the whole cheese front. Yum.

Read more of Infinite Jest and got to sleep only a little bit later than expected.

---

As I've been mentioning, I was a little nervous about today's run. I could tell when I started my warm-up that the legs were a bit wobbly, probably a combination of not eating enough yesterday and my nerves. Didn't have a hell of a lot of zip in them, either, but I tried to just put the doubts aside and get going with the workout.

First mile was 6min dead on the nose with almost perfect splits. Nice start. Second mile actually required a little concentration by the end; I lost 2 seconds on the 3rd lap and never got them back. Okay, I can deal. Third mile, same thing. At this point, I took a GU, and was glad I had brought it, because I was feeling a bit bonky. Them glycogen stores must've been pretty depleted. Note to self. Mile 4 had me considering the benefits of puking by 800m and again I was 2 seconds in the hole with just 200m to go, but there were a pair of ladies taking pictures for... something?... and I believe they were of me, on the home straight, which helped me to get into a really solid groove and throw a 43sec last 200m for an even 6min mile. Silly pride. Mile 5, I paid for my surge in mile 4, losing a second on laps 2, 3, and 4, for a 6:03 split. So, all of those fell within my goal range of 6:00-6:03. Good.

Aaaaand then mile 6, on the streets. Did I mention that I was at that weird wanting-to-cry place by the end of mile 5? Yeah, it happens to me when I get into the red zone. So I knew this one would be tough. Remember, the first ~3/4 of the mile are uphill. So, that incline started to blow my quads a bit, but I still managed a 6:15 mile and a 6:06NGP (flat equivalent). In hindsight, had I remembered to start making boxes earlier, I could've done better. What I mean by that is a reference to an article I read about really dialing in on the race mentality when it gets tough. Focusing on the box that you can control. In my case, it's my form, my breathing, and a visual waypoint ~100' away. Once I get to the waypoint, I make a new one. A sort of mental trick. It got me through the last quarter mile with relative ease.

So, still got a bit of work ahead of me but this run was a lot more promising than last time, despite the last mile. A few more "excuses" that I'm giving myself to help bolster that confidence: the temperature was almost 70 by the time I started the repeats, and has a "real feel" of 77 now. In a month, that'll be 10 degrees cooler. On race day, 10-20 more. That's going to make a difference. I still didn't feel too fresh at the beginning of today. I have to think fresh legs and race-day mentality will help, too.

Coupla easy days ahead of me followed by an overnight backpacking trip with my dad this weekend to wrap up my cutback week. Then it's back in the saddle to focus on speed and turnover for 3 weeks.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  mul21 on Tue Sep 11, 2012 4:33 pm

1. You're way early in training.

2. Those were really short rest intervals for that high of an effort/that long of a repeat.

3. You're way early in training.

Those were fast and good. Don't over analyze too much. Keep plugging away and you'll be fine. The weather is such a huge factor. I ran 20 last weekend easily at 8:20 pace and couldn't hold that for 18 2 weeks earlier because it was so much hotter and more humid. You'll be fine.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Tue Sep 11, 2012 4:48 pm

That's my thought, Jim. Glad you agree. I figure I've just started my "core" training (weeks 12-2 pre-race), so this is a good start. Appreciating the vote of confidence.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Dave-O on Tue Sep 11, 2012 9:48 pm

I don't think I've ever hit 10k pace for 6 x 1 mile. So I am confident you are on track for your goal.

However, here's a friendly reminder that not every workout has to build on or exceed the previous one. I offer that advice as someone who has fallen victim to that mindset before. "Well, I ran XX for this workout 10 days ago so I have to do better this time." Training doesn't always work like that, but more importantly, its the physiological benefit that matters, not recording a faster and faster time.

Keep up the good work.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Wed Sep 12, 2012 12:38 pm

Dave - Thanks for both bits of wisdom. The second came in particularly handy today.

Yep, I was feelin' it today. Both the fatigue as well as the still-depleted glycogen stores. Funny thing, those little late-night binges I've been trying to give up actually kept me at a caloric balance when all was said and done, and now that I've been without any junk the last 3 days, I'm starting to notice it. Gotta eat bigger meals, I guess.

Anyway, headed out for a mindless 5mi with no attention to pace. Ended up with 5.04 in 42min for an 8:20 average. Then some planks and pushups. Now to eat.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  JohnP on Wed Sep 12, 2012 12:52 pm

I don't know that it's eating more, but things like whole wheat pasta should help a lot. Also, using more of the Gus as you did should also help during a run when you are somewhat depleted.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  mul21 on Wed Sep 12, 2012 8:03 pm

As you do these harder workouts, you'll find you need to be very diligent about refueling immediately after the run (like, within a half hour). When I started doing more extended hard workouts, that was something Dave warned me about and I could definitely feel it the next day when I didn't do it properly. I usually do a slim fast and some gatorade right after longish runs and tempos where I go 10 miles or more total. That seems to work well for me, but whatever you end up doing, shoot for that 4:1 carb:protein ratio.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Sep 13, 2012 1:17 pm

John - I think it is. My estimated BMR right now is somewhere in the ballpark of 2100-2500cal/day, +100cal/mi. The last 4 days I've probably been averaging right around 2000-2200cal, with a total of 29mi. So I'm a bit in the red zone. But yes, plenty of whole grains in my diet now that I'm ramping up the miles and intensity.

Jim - It's funny; I'm usually so obsessive about eating within 30min... But after the long/hard workouts, I just can't pack enough in without feeling nauseated.

---

Planned 5.5mi or so this morning. Ended up running 6.0x + 6x 10sec hill sprints + 3x strides. Total of around 7.25mi covered. Still zapped from Tuesday's repeats - not surprised. Just tired today. Going to nap and try to rest as much as possible during my backpacking trip/this weekend.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mark B on Fri Sep 14, 2012 12:34 am

Mike MacLellan wrote:It's funny; I'm usually so obsessive about eating within 30min... But after the long/hard workouts, I just can't pack enough in without feeling nauseated.

Someone should introduce you to Ben & Jerry's.... Approval
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Fri Sep 14, 2012 9:00 am

Boy - get thee self some iron. I know everyone thinks iron is a female issue, but it isn't. One of the older guys that I ran with all the time in Atlanta suffered from low serum ferritin stores (like I do) and it is amazing what a little bit of iron in your diet will do. This is not anemia in that your hemoglobin reads low, but the actual stores of iron in your body. We lose iron when we sweat and even with foot strikes and many, many athletes suffer from low stores. The range that your doc will measure is 20-300 and if you are in that range they will say you are normal, but I know from experience that if your run a lot of miles and drift down below 50 (even 80), you will suffer and you can still have a normal hemoglobin test.

Since you do not eat red meat (I think I'm right there), you probably need to find a supplement (besides Guiness which is loaded with iron) that works for you. I like Bifera as it doesn't mess with my stomach. You can only eat so much spinach and so many beans.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Alex Kubacki on Fri Sep 14, 2012 10:24 am

Mike,
I am one of those that gets a bit discouraged if a workout isn't as fast at the prior weeks. I am definitely going to heed Dave's advice.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mike MacLellan on Sun Sep 16, 2012 3:57 pm

Mark - Too much fat in ice cream! Fro yo, on the other hand... Yummy.

Michele - You should know by now that I'll frown at a supplement Wink ; however, I'll look into iron deficiency and check out some animal sources of it. I'd rather eat grass-fed whatever than a supplement. Thanks for the info!

Alex - Yep. Just gotta remember to trust the training. The legs will come around if I'm patient.

---

I don't remember if I mentioned this - I think I did - but I went backpacking with my dad this weekend. He got up here Thursday night, we had Chipotle and a couple of beers, and fell asleep in front of the TV. We're an exciting bunch, us MacLellan males.

Friday morning, we packed up and headed out towards Reno. No, we weren't going to Reno; we stopped at Truckee to get a fire permit then headed back up Donner Pass to the summit, where we parked and ate lunch before taking off.
Hiked a relatively easy 8 miles in to an alpine lake named Paradise Lake. By relatively easy, I mean it wasn't like mountain climbing, but there was over 2200' climbing and 1700' loss, so it wasn't just a flat stroll. Still, with only two big hills and meadows in between, it was a nice, leisurely day. The last mile was admittedly a bit awful, as we didn't know exactly where the trail to the lake was, only that it was east across the valley, so we just bushwhacked through meadows for about a mile until coming to a wall of granite boulders. Well, through scrambling up and over those boulders, we came across a trail that led to a final scramble up to the lake. Hmmm, wish the online description had mentioned that. That just made the final destination that much more of a happy sight. We spent the afternoon just lounging. Had a nice fire, lentils and veggie kielbasa for dinner, and Snickers for dessert.

The hike out yesterday was a little longer, as I decided to climb Castle Peak from the pass (the first of the two hills going in). By climb, I mean drop the pack and run... until I hit a wall. Seriously upwards of 40% on loose dirt. Ugh, that sucked. My calves were not happy. Anyway, 1.2mi/1000+' gain and 25min later, I was at the top. And another 20min brought me back down. 9.5mi with 2700' gain and almost 3000' loss for that.

We headed to Tahoe for lunch, stopped in a small hamlet called Sunnyside at the Fire Sign Cafe. I suggest it. It's just across from the lake, has a-maz-ing muffins (the special was chocolate chip coffeecake; omg), and a really cute/quaint atmosphere. Plus, our waitress was a very cute Russian woman about my age.

By the time we got home, I was pretty exhausted, in that post-marathon head-fuzzy-face-glowing way. Made fish tacos for dinner, ate, more beer, college football, and it was time for bed. All in all, a very good visit with my dad.


On top of Castle Pass.


Dan contemplating the insanity of climbing to Castle Peak (to his credit, he did make it about 1/2 way up and met me on my way down).


View from the first meadow, near Peter Grubb Hut.


Looking back from the lake, I think.


Sunset on the lake.


Sunset + fire.


Morning view. Dan was still asleep at this point.


Meadow-ish. Really windy. Not sure if the picture shows it.

Another afterthought: I'm glad my dad, at age 60, is in shape to do these things. True story.

---

Oh, and then I ran today! Kind of a late start, since Dan and I sat around and chatted for an hour or so, then I talked to Aileen, then ran. Fortunately, it was really nice out; warm, in the low 70s probably, but shirtless it felt great. Went out for 6mi to match Aileen's run for the day (aw, cute?). Like usual, it ended up being progressive, with my miles in the 7:10-7:40 range after a slow, sore-quad-and-tight-calves warm up mile or so. Good run.
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Mike MacLellan
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Mark B on Sun Sep 16, 2012 7:14 pm

Nice trip, nice pix, nice run, nice dad! All well worth enjoying. Approval
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Sun Sep 16, 2012 8:14 pm

Wow, what a nice trip. I went skiing in the Donner Pass once - it was low key and kind of cool. Maybe someday my daughter and I can bond over something besides shopping Wink .
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  Michael Enright on Sun Sep 16, 2012 9:26 pm

I don't know. Eating with a family member in the Donner Pass would make me a little nervous, I think, about who we were eating.

Just kidding! Nice pix, sounds like a great trip and visit. Nice that you got to do it.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

Post  JohnP on Mon Sep 17, 2012 12:40 am

Don't underestimate what Michele said - iron is critical to long distance runners. I know I have to take an iron supplement as my counts were pretty low, below the threshold. It makes a huge difference in your ability to run.
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Re: Leaving Neverland

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