RIP, Dad: 1/20-26 WRD

I shared a love of swimming & the water with my Dad

When last we talked, I had just come home from visiting my Dad. As it turned out he passed away just a few hours later, and regular readers of this blog know that it was indeed a blessing. I went back the next day and have stayed with my Mom until today, helping with all the many tasks that needed to be done — dying is not actually simple, it turns out.

I am comforted by the fact that the Hospice Nurse had been there before my Mother & I came, and my sister visited not long after we did. So he had been surrounded by people on his last day, although no one was with  him at the very end.

Although the last few years have not been good, and the last few months were frankly hellish, my Dad had an amazing life filled with family, friends, and many adventures.

Sadly my brother was not able to visit him while he was in the nursing home or this last week, but in some ways I think that was a good thing. My brother was the closest to my Dad, but the Dad we knew has been gone a long time.

My brother, like my Dad, is a good speaker, and he gave the eulogy at his funeral, which didn’t leave a dry eye in the room — but also delivered many laughs. Oddly enough, I felt called on to say a few words too.

I was not nearly as close to my Dad as my brother was; although my Dad was a charming man, he could also be a very difficult man. I did want to share with you just a little bit of the end:

I was not an athlete like the rest of my family. Late in my life I started to run, then to race. Dad taught us to not be afraid to try new things, and to work hard. I am working on trying to run a half marathon in every state. Dad loved following that journey and always asked where the next race would be.

I remember showing him one of my race photos. He turned to my Mom and said “Who would have thought she’d be the athlete?”. He was so proud of my accomplishments.

When I came to visit Mom & Dad, Dad often called me his angel. Now you’re my angel, Dad. I know you’re reunited with so many loved ones and I know you’ll always be there, helping me when the going gets tough.

Your race is done, Dad, and you ran it well.


Joining Kim @ Kimrunsonthefly and Deborah @ Confessionsofamotherrunner and sharing moving through loss.


And linking up with Jenn @ Runswithpugs, Brandi @ Funnerrunner, Anna Louise @ Graciouswarriorprincess, Briana @ Matsmilesmedals, Meghan @ Meghanonthemove, and Elizabeth @ Trainwithbainfor RIOTS(running is our therapy)

Workouts update

I couldn’t really quite tell you what I did when. There were 2 runs, a lot of walking, some yoga, and some Soul Strolls.

Mileage: 10 (-3)

JY = Jasyoga
PB = Killer B
TM = Treadmill
YFR = Yoga for Runners*
WU = warmup
CD = cooldown
SB = Stationary Bike
YFPR = Yoga for Pain Relief
YTU = Yoga Tune Up Lower Body*

*Disclaimer: Amazon affiliate links; I will make a small amount of money if you buy through these links

Running Update

The beginning of the week was brutally cold. Although I’d packed a bag when I went to visit the day before, just in case, I had to repack for a longer visit. I wasn’t sure when/if I’d run again, but I packed running clothes just in case. I also quickly pounded out 3 progressive miles on the mill.

I think these sculptures are meant to be flowers or leaves, but the one on the right reminded me of an angel

By Thursday we had done as much as we could do without the death certificates, and I decided to run. Maybe I’d do a long run, maybe not. The hills are really killer there. But I did get in 7 slow, hilly miles. Almost got eaten by a pack of dogs trying the take the photo above, though!

Not letting me out of his sight — until it’s time to eat, LOL!

Favorites of the week
It was definitely a hard week. We got to spend a lot of time together as a family, of course, and while it’s not the circumstances we wanted, I’m glad almost the entire immediate family was together.

I came home this afternoon, and to say the dogs were overjoyed is an understatement. Bandit really never hangs out in the office with me, and Mr. Judy is about to call him upstairs for his dinner, but I think he wants to make sure I don’t disappear again anytime soon.

Life should settle down now, for a while, I hope. Of course my Mom is almost 92. I think she’ll live a few more years, both my parents were extremely strong people, but who knows? This was the love of her life and they were married for 72 years and knew each other for 77.

No questions this week. Just give your loved ones some hugs.

Mistakes, I’ve made a few


It’s time to lighten it up around here! Race bloopers, anyone? I’ve made a few, for sure. I know I tend to get kinda serious on the blog, but I do like to laugh at myself occasionally. There’s plenty to laugh about!

Well, this one above was more like cry about. The time I wore a brand new pair of socks — the exact same color and style I’d worn in previous socks. The only time I ever lost a toenail and got a blood blister (so far, knock on wood).

Fairytales and Fitness


The first is always special
My first half marathon was definitely special. What made it just a little more special? Mr. Judy noticing on race day that my timing chip (the old school kind that loops around your laces) . . . well . . . it wasn’t mine.

I’d carefully checked my bib, but it never occurred to me to check the timing chip. We got it squared away, but he was never able to track me.

I know where it starts! Or do I?
This was also a first: my first 10k. I got there early. I started walking . . . and walking . . . and walking. When I didn’t see other runners milling or a start line, I realized I didn’t actually know where the start was.

I literally ran to the start — getting there just in the nick of time to get my timing chip (again, old school!) and line up. I certainly got my warm up that day.

Mugging at the start. I was way overdressed though; the end was a different story. I listened to the forecasters —BIG mistake!

The time I listened to the weather forecasters
Never listen to the forecasters. If you’re traveling (I was) pack for at least 10 degrees more or less than what is forecast. Don’t listen to your husband making fun of how much you’re bringing and bring that extra outfit when you’re traveling by car.

I was so looking forward to my flat, scenic ME half. The forecast was for roughly 50 and cloudy. I awoke to low 60s and not a cloud in the sky. It didn’t help that water stations ran out of both cups and water a couple of times.

Just to add salt to the wound, as we headed home through the mountains the next day it snowed.

The time I left the water bottle on top of the car
Another half we were driving to. At the time I was training using a handheld water bottle. Which I put on top of my car (the one we weren’t taking) as we packed the car we were taking — and it stayed there as we drove away.

It was a small race, in a small town, and nope, I wasn’t able to purchase another water bottle for the race. I relied on the aid stations. Luckily this was a very well run race and despite the unseasonable heat (again!), I PR’d.

Seriously, how does a visor like this hide?

The time I lost my visor . . . or did I?
We spent a few very happy days in Sedona before my half just outside Phoenix. I went to lay out my running outfit for the next day and  . . . no visor. I went through my bags more than once. I knew it was going to be very sunny and very hot and I needed a visor!

We finally found one (it’s amazing how hard it was to find a visor suitable for running in such a sunny area!). Of course I found the visor I’d brought as soon as we got back to the hotel. I didn’t wear the one we purchased and we returned it (and I didn’t get heat stroke!).

The time I lost my shoelace . . . or did I?
Remember this one, Marcia @ MarciasHealthySlice? Marcia kindly gave me a ride to the buses that bussed us up the mountain for our UT half, so Mr. Judy didn’t have to get up at o’darkthirty. I was all ready, came down on time, checked everything once more and . . . no shoelace.

I was using a hydration vest at the time, and it didn’t fit quite right (but I loved it) and I needed that shoelace to make sure it was closed properly. Marcia patiently waited while I went back to the hotel room. Yup, the shoelace actually was in the hydration vest all the time . . . sorry, Marcia!

The time I video’d . . .
I’m willing to bet most of us have done this one. I run with my phone in the pocket of my skirt. Somehow I managed to put it on video and apparently push the button to start it, too. Yup, I video’d the inside of my pocket for God knows how long!

Final Thoughts
So many of these race bloopers were so anxiety-inducing at the time, but in the end, everything turned out just fine. There’s a moral in that!

Have you done any of these mistakes? Which one/s?

What race mistakes have you made?

What do you look back on that was so important at the time, that you now get a good chuckle over?

Thinking about choosing a word for 2020, or some intentions? I’ve got you covered! There’s a new, short Vinyasa video on my Youtube channel here. Yes, Yin Yoga is not the only type of Yoga I practice! Sign up for my newsletter hereto find out when I add new videos, and you’ll receive a free companion PDF and a bonus Abundance meditation.

Would I run Boston . . .

. . . if someone handed me an entry?


Thanks to Wendy @ Takingthelongwayhome for this blog post inspiration — check out her list of 60 Blog Post for Runners here. I may have to come up with my own list — if I can think of more; Wendy did a great job!

The Pros
Anyone that reads my blog for a while knows that I put a great deal of thought into most decisions. This one wouldn’t be an easy one.  So let’s start off with the good stuff:

  1. Mr. Judy grew up in Wellesley. It wouldn’t be that hard to twist his arm into going to Boston.
  2. Boston is within driving distance, which makes the logistics a bit easier to handle.
  3. Crowd support.
  4. Dave McGillivray, Race Director Extraordinaire.
  5. You may have to be fast to qualify for Boston, but the course stays open a long time.
  6. Bragging rights.
Oy! The heat! The hills!

The Cons
If I ever run a marathon, which is something I put a lot of thought into, actually, I’d, well, put a lot of thought into it:

  1. The course. OMG, the hills! Obviously I’ve never run Boston. I did do the one and only Runner’s World Heartbreak Half — there I am in the photo above, drenched afterwards, from an unseasonably hot day and pouring water all over myself during the race. The course was partially designed by Dave McGillivray, and it tried to mimic Boston: start with a downhill, Newton hills (including Heartbreak) towards the end. I remember thinking to myself you have to deal with these starting at mile 20? Are you NUTS?????
  2. The weather. You truly never know what the heck the weather’s going to do: broiling hot or snowing, yup, it all happens.
  3. Training through Winter. I may run through Winter, and I have trained through Winter, but not all that often. There’s a reason for that — Winter is tough to run through in the Northeast!
  4. The crowds. I have done huge races a few times. I’m actually okay with big or small, but Mr. Judy is not fond of crowds. And I’m not fond of not being able to find my own running space.
  5. The expense. I don’t know how much Boston costs, but I’m guessing it’s a lot. Of course, someone is handing me this entry in this scenario, because it’s for darn sure I’m never qualifying on my own, but still.

If a dream doesn’t motivate you to work hard, to get up early and get to bed early, to sometimes make the hard choices between training and going out — maybe it’s not the right dream for you. — Chocolaterunsjudy

Final thoughts
It seems as though the pros outweigh the cons, but not by a lot. I have to admit it’s not something I’ve ever given a lot of thought to, because I’m not going to raise that many $$$ or qualify. It’s not my dream.

My dream for a marathon? I don’t really know. I still have that feeling that someday I’d like to tackle one. Right now is not the right time for maybe. Maybe it will never be the right time. Or maybe someday I’ll find my own running space in life and see just what is out there after 18 miles.

Would you do Boston if your entry was paid for and guaranteed?

What’s your dream marathon?

Do you think it would feel as satisfying if you didn’t have to qualify? 


Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup


Treading water: 1/13-19 WRD

I felt back to normal this week (until today, poor sleep last night, ended up on the couch with Bandit due to Lola making noises), and good thing, too, as we got a call from Hospice that my Dad was worsening and they didn’t think he has a lot of time left. Which could mean any day — or maybe even still weeks. No one really knows.

As you read this I’m on my way down to my moms, most likely. Or coming back (I hope). It could be my final goodbye to my Dad, although I don’t think so — but it’s almost definitely coming soon.

Updated 1/19: RIP, Dad. I’m glad I got down there today for what did turn out to be our final goodbye.


Joining Kim @ Kimrunsonthefly and Deborah @ Confessionsofamotherrunner and share how I try to keep my head above water by treading, doing what I can, when I can. As much as the weather and our news was gloomy, though, all was not doom and gloom.


And linking up with Jenn @ Runswithpugs, Brandi @ Funnerrunner, Anna Louise @ Graciouswarriorprincess, Briana @ Matsmilesmedals, Meghan @ Meghanonthemove, and Elizabeth @ Trainwithbainfor RIOTS(running is our therapy)

Workouts update

  • Monday:  Dogwalk, Filmed Yoga Video (20 min)
  • Tuesday: Taught Yoga (60 min), 3 easy miles
  • Wednesday: 7 mile LSD, Dogwalk
  • Thursday: Yin Yoga (30 min), Dogwalk, PB Cardio + ST (25 min)
  • Friday: 3 Progressive TM miles, Yoga (30 min)
  • Saturday: PB Cardio + Arms (20 min), Dogwalk
  • Sunday: Travel back & forth to parents

Mileage: 13 (NC)

JY = Jasyoga
PB = Killer B
TM = Treadmill
YFR = Yoga for Runners*
WU = warmup
CD = cooldown
SB = Stationary Bike
YFPR = Yoga for Pain Relief
YTU = Yoga Tune Up Lower Body*

*Disclaimer: Amazon affiliate links; I will make a small amount of money if you buy through these links

Running Update

It was a gray week — until it got really cold

Finally feeling better so I tackled some Hill Repeats, while we still have snow-less hills.

I thought the pattern on the still mostly unfrozen water was cool

The weather going into the weekend looked ugly. Bitter cold, windy, possible snow and freezing rain — yuck! Luckily feeling back to normal, and normally I wouldn’t tackle a long run after a hill repeat day, but I really didn’t want to run Friday when it would be in the teens (if I was lucky) with 20 mph winds.

I got out on the bike path and I kept a close eye on my HR, trying to keep it mostly in the “easy” zone, starting out a bit easier than normal. I wanted to make sure I wasn’t doing too much, too soon. Mission accomplished (I think).

Bitterly cold day as predicted, although sunny. Didn’t seem as windy as predicted, but I had a lot to do and was happy I have that treadmill available to me in the comfort of my own home.

Almost doesn’t look like a live plant, right?

Favorites of the week
The grow light on the peace lilies looks so cool!

Smoothie bowls, Protein Peanut Butter, Protein Chips, Oh my!

I explored theNew York Fitness Expo. So much local, delicious healthy food. We may have eaten our way through there. I may have bought a few treats for myself. This is the first year this event has been held, and it was quite literally 5 minutes from my home. I will definitely be attending in 2021; there was so much to explore (and not just food!).

Not sure I’d want that blow torch near me . . .

I’ve actually had a short, free cupping done before, but it wasn’t quite this flashy. There were fitness demos, all the CBD products, clothing, and so much more. It was amazing how many local companies we had no idea was in our area!

Notice that indent in the middle? That’s so it doesn’t press directly on your spine, but rather to either side of your spine. 

You know how much I love my recovery and foam rolling (read more about why I think recovery is so important here). The T-PIN! Vector is not a foam roller, but it is a recovery tool. I spent quite some time talking with the owner, trying it out. Then I checked out the rest of the expo, while mulling it over, and yup, went back and bought it.

That same indent helps protect your delicate neck, while still allowing you to roll the kinks out

You can expect a more thorough review in the future, but for now, I will say I was quite impressed with it and the price point (normally retails for $60, but there was a good deal at the expo so mine was cheaper) — you can find out more info on the T-PIN! Vector here.

See anything this week that made you just think now that’s cool looking? 

CBD — yay or nay? I’m still on the fence. How do you know which companies are legit? Not that that stopped me from picking up a few samples.

What’s your favorite recovery tool?  

5 Reasons you should do speed work . . .


. . . even if you’re not training for anything

I am not training for a race. In fact, I won’t start seriously training for my summer half until about the end of March. I still include some type of speed work into most of my weeks. I’m going to share why you should, too.

Fairytales and Fitness


For some of us, sometimes speedwork means getting on the treadmill

What is the purpose of speed work?
Of course you never have to do speed work if you don’t want to; it’s a completely personal choice. Here are some of the benefits of including speed work in your running:

  1. It can help you increase how quickly you get oxygen to your oxygen hungry muscles, allowing you to run faster.
  2. It can help your body store more glycogen. Hitting the wall? That’s what happens when we use up our glycogen stores (and is why it’s important to take in fuel on longer runs). It’s a no brainer that being able to store more glycogen could be helpful in holding off fatigue longer (even though at some point you will deplete your stored glycogen).
  3. It’s generally accepted that if you want to run faster, guess what? You need to run faster!
  4. It can help you strengthen the muscles that help you run (glutes and hip flexors)
  5. It helps to prevent burn out. I don’t know about you, but running the same distance at the same pace all the time is really boring to me.

A potential bonus benefit: adding in a little speedwork might help you manage your weight. Your body quickly adapts to anything that you do all the time — and that includes those LSDs (long, slow, distance runs) and those easy 3 or 4 milers. You’ve got to shake things up if you want to maintain or lose some weight.

Sometimes it means getting out there to race as training

How often should you incorporate speed work into your running?
One to two speed sessions a week is plenty (it depends on how many days a week you run). You shouldn’t do two hard runs in a row: if you do speed work on Monday and you run Tuesday, it should be an easy run.

Pay close attention to your body, as always. If you find that you’re not recovering well, or if a niggle — and especially a pain! — shows up, either skip you planned speed work or reschedule to later in the week (if you’re feeling better).

Hill repeats, by the way, are speed work in disguise.

Speed work can be playful
Right about now you’re probably thinking — ugh! I don’t want to have to run hard.  Speed work doesn’t always have to be hard, or even long. Add some strides (short, fast intervals — we’re talking maybe 30 seconds) midway in your run or after you’ve completed your scheduled distance.

Consider a Fartlek run (which actually means speed play). I have several routes that are lined by trees. I love to run hard between two trees, easy between the next two, and so on — I just do it until I don’t feel like doing it anymore.

Whether you want to get faster or not. speed work can help you get out of a running rut and put a little more pep in your step. Give it a try and see how you feel!

Do you ever do speed drills?

Do you preferred structured speed workouts or just inserting a little speed here and there?

What is your favorite type of speed workout?

The Trick to Reaching Your Goals


A new year is all about new goals, right? Or maybe it’s just about the same goals but in a new year. Once you set those goals — how do you reach them?  There’s lots of talk about SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time-bound).

I think the secret to your goals is even easier: baby steps.


Take baby steps
You heard me: break your goal down into very small steps. Once you’ve done that, if you’re still having trouble working towards your goal, it just means your steps aren’t small enough. You need to break them down even more.

Getting to the starting line is just the final steps in many baby steps

Let’s break down a race goal
Of course you’ll train differently for a 5k than you would for a marathon, but the basic steps to carry you to your goal are the same:

  • Pick a race and register for it.
  • If your race involves travel, book those plane tickets and make the hotel reservations. Early. Earlier than you think you need to do. I like to make sure my hotel has a refrigerator and microwave for those early race morning breakfasts (and leftovers!).
  • Get fitted for the proper shoes.
  • Either hire a coach or find a training plan (online, in a magazine, in a book, make your own).
  • Figure out when you have to start training for the race. I like to add in a couple of extra weeks to my training plan — life happens.
  • Put all the workouts on your calendar. This could be a digital calendar or a physical calendar — or both! Share with training buddies or significant others so they know when you will be available (or unavailable).
  • Also put any big events you’re aware of during your training period on your calendar. Think about how that event will effect your training. Decide how you’ll juggle the event with your training.
  • Make sure to book support appointments in advance: massages, chiropractic, fitness trainer.
  • Will you need a fresh pair of running shoes before the race? When will you buy them? Don’t wait til the last minute only to find out they’re not available in your size!
  • Test out your shoe, clothing, accessories like fuel belts or hydration vests, nutrition (if necessary), and hydration choices on your long (or longer, if the race is a shorter distance) runs.
  • Test out your pre-and post run meals on your long runs. If you’re traveling, look to see if you’ll be able to get similar meals near where you’re staying. What will you do if there are no tried and true options for you at local restaurants? If you’re staying local and you want to eat at a particular restaurant, consider making a reservation for that pre-race meal.
  • As the race nears, decide on your goals: finish with a smile on your face, run with a friend, crush a PR, enjoy the views? It’s your race, but knowing what you want out of it going into it can help you have a good time.

There are so many decisions that can go into a race, especially if you’re traveling for that race. There are so many steps to training. It can seem overwhelming in the beginning. Breaking down a large goal into easily doable steps will make it seem more doable, less frightening.

Breaking down a large goal into easily doable steps will take out so much of the pre-race anxiety and get you to the starting line feeling prepared. — Chocolaterunsjudy

Final thoughts: It works for all goals
Breaking a large goal into baby steps is the trick for reaching any goal: running, weight loss, career, getting stronger, getting more flexible. You name it and you can baby step your way to it.

Do you make goals and then never think about how to get to them? How does that make you feel?

What baby steps would you add to training for a race?

What are your goals — for 2020, for this month, this week? Please share!


Linking up with Zenaida Arroyo and Kim @ Kookyrunner

This week I am also joining up with Running on Happy, Suzlyfe, Crazy Running Girl, and Coach Debbie Runs each week for the Coaches’ Corner linkup


Running in skirt: 1/6-12 WRD

I was home all week, which helped, but I’ve also been quite busy between appointments and prepping to teach and teaching yoga. I felt pretty run down by the end of the week  — mostly due to a week or so of poor sleep — so I took a lot more rest than usual.


Joining Kim @ Kimrunsonthefly and Deborah @ Confessionsofamotherrunner and share how I try to walk my talk when it comes to listening to my body & rest & recovery!


And linking up with Jenn @ Runswithpugs, Brandi @ Funnerrunner, Anna Louise @ Graciouswarriorprincess, Briana @ Matsmilesmedals, Meghan @ Meghanonthemove, and Elizabeth @ Trainwithbainfor RIOTS(running is our therapy)

Workouts update

  • Monday:  SB WU (10 min), 3 progressive miles TM, PB ST  (25 min), Yoga  (20 min)
  • Tuesday: 3 easy miles, Dogwalk
  • Wednesday: Dogwalk, Taught Yoga (60 min)
  • Thursday: Dogwalk, Rest Day, Yoga (40 min)
  • Friday: Dogwalk, Rest Day, Yoga (30 min)
  • Saturday: Yoga (60 min), Meditation Workshop (60 min)
  • Sunday: Yoga (30 min), 7 mile LSD

Mileage: 13 (NC)

JY = Jasyoga
PB = Killer B
TM = Treadmill
YFR = Yoga for Runners*
WU = warmup
CD = cooldown
SB = Stationary Bike
YFPR = Yoga for Pain Relief
YTU = Yoga Tune Up Lower Body*

*Disclaimer: Amazon affiliate links; I will make a small amount of money if you buy through these links

Running Update

I’ve been spending too much time with my treadmill. I thought I’d be running outside today, but then it snowed on and off today — lightly — but we’d had rain all day Saturday, with a drop in temps on Sunday, which means black ice is hiding under that snow. No thanks.

Not everyone takes down their decorations quickly — and I’m okay with that!

Ran errands, then ran at home later. Good news: it had warmed up so any ice left from yesterday had melted. Bad news: I lost the sunshine we had earlier in the day. I was hustling to get it done before my haircut, so a nice pace (at the right heart rate).

Unseasonably warm with temps dropping — check it out — running in a skirt in January!

Definitely felt run down this week, so you’ll notice there wasn’t a lot of activity. I kept putting off a long run, toyed with the idea of skipping it altogether, but by Sunday I wasn’t feeling too bad and it was low 60s (with wind — notice my neck gaiter on the hat).

I struggled a bit with what to wear, as I knew the wind would make it feel cooler and the temps would be dropping. I hauled out my long haul skirt, work a wool top, and it was mostly good. I deliberately kept the pace mostly easy, and I got 7 miles done. Glad I had the opportunity to run in a skirt in January (it’s already dropped into the 50s, and will only go down from there).

#teamnuun 2020!

Favorites of the week
Happy to be back representing #teamnuun for a second year! Which reminds me, I really need to go drink some Nuun Rest . . .

Lola enjoying the heated bed (that’s Chester on Mr. Judy’s screen!)

We plugged in the heated bed that used to be Gizmo’s and the dogs seem to be enjoying it.

I taught my second Cat Yoga class at the Humane Society. There were some people who had come to the first class. Even more rewarding was one of the women telling me afterward that one of the moves I did really helped her back, and another sharing her word for 2020 with me.

There are some exciting things brewing with my Yoga, but I’m not quite ready to share yet! What I am ready to share is my newest video: it’s basically the Yin half of the class I taught. I plan to video the first half of the class, which is more Vinyasa style, soon. Check out the video above here.

Sign up for my newsletter here to find out when I add new videos, and you’ll receive a free companion PDF to the video above and a bonus Abundance meditation.

I also have a short video I filmed in the car post run today, and I need your feedback on that one! Please watch it here (it’s only 2 minutes) and leave me a comment.

What good news did you get this week? 

What’s your go-to when you’re feeling like your coming down with something? A while ago I listened to an audiobook that recommended putting black pepper in your tea. I swear it helps (I imagine it would work just fine with coffee, too).

How has 2020 started for you?