Friday, October 31, 2014

Homemade Turkey Stuffing

Only a few simply ingredients!

It’s Food Friday and since November is upon us I thought I would share my recipe and instructions for making Homemade Turkey Stuffing. This stuffing recipe has evolved from an old version in Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook.  Using dried French or Italian bread adds weight to the stuffing.  There are no fancy ingredients in this recipe. This NOT a diet dish!  It is classic comfort food at its best!

Homemade Turkey Stuffing
3 – 4 loaves French or Italian bread (Cut into cubes and dried)
One Medium Onion
Several stalks celery
One stick butter or margarine
1 tsp Salt
½ tsp Pepper
2 – 4 tsp sage (To taste)
2 cups Chicken Broth (This varies according to bread dryness and volume.)
Dried French or Italian bread cubes
A couple days prior to making this recipe, cut bread into one inch cubes.  Place on cookie sheet and dry in oven on low heat, or cover and set out to dry on counter.
When ready to assemble stuffing, dice onion and celery.  (This can be done ahead and stored in food storage bag overnight.)  Cook vegetables in butter until tender.  Add salt, pepper, and sage.
Place bread in large bowl.  Sprinkle additional sage over bread, if desired.
Drizzle vegetable mixture over bread and toss to combine.  Pour chicken broth over bread mixture.  Work with hands to ensure bread is moistened throughout.  Dressing should stick together when squeezed into a ball.  Water can be added if more liquid is needed.
Stuff turkey and roast until interior temperature reaches 165°.  This is a large recipe.  Excess dressing can be baked in a casserole or crock pot.  The crock pot method will maintain moisture and allow for pre-dinner sampling!
Stuffing will have a dense texture.  It really might stick to your ribs! (You better plan to participate in a Turkey Trot to burn a few extra calories before dinner!)

Do you have a favorite recipe that my readers need to hear about? Comment below or message me so we can share it here.

Running Granny Green encourages women, especially grandmothers, to gain greater fitness by providing tips and inspiration to insure long years of joyful grand-parenting. The cookie recipes are a bonus!

Happy Running!
Carol - aka Running Granny Green
Follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Guest Blogger: Jane Freund writes about friendship

Meet Jane, this week's Guest Blogger!  Jane Freund is an author, speaker and book coach based in Boise, Idaho - and she is my friend. See what Jane has to say about friendship.

A Freundly Investment
Here's a fascinating fact: You have 168 hours in your week (no more and no less). What you do with those hours is based upon the priorities you set. For me, with all of the possible activities I CAN do, one of the activities I know I NEED to do is make a Freundly investment with some of my precious 168. Let me explain more.
Since I was a child, I have had a fascination with friendship. This passion began with the realization that my last name "Freund" means "friend" in German. Although painfully shy as a child, I began a deliberate effort when I was in junior high to become more outgoing and make more friends. The further I delved into friendship, the more interest I developed in the topic. In fact, my first book, "The Fine Art of Female Friendships"  is on the subject of friendships and I continue to write about and speak on the topic.
I define a friend as somebody who strives to put my best interest first and for whom I strive to do the same. Notice that I say "strive" because I don't expect perfection from my friends and I don't want them to expect it from me. Besides, perfection would be boring.
Speaking of boring, the benefits of friendships include getting to know people who are different than yourself. I would be bored if all of my friends were like me. I learn so much by connecting with people who challenge my thinking and teach me things I did not previously know.
Another benefit to friendships is to build a support team. Some of the most functional people I know have built a network of friends to be an integral part of their lives. By doing so, they have a support team of people to help them through illness, grief, family dysfunction and other struggles. When I had thyroid cancer, my friends were an incredible support as I recovered from the surgery and worked to get my synthetic thyroid balanced. (NOTE: You can read more about my cancer journey in my book: "Eggshells and Elephants")
However, the benefits of friendships are not limited struggles. Friends are terrific for sharing our victories and triumphs. My friends have cheered me along through each book I have written and the other personal and professional successes I have achieved.
OK yeah friends are important and all that's good stuff, but how are you supposed to make and to keep friends when you have your precious 168 hours in a week? Books have been written and more are yet to be done on this topic. For now, let me share some tips that have helped me be successful and effective in the friendship department.
-          The seemingly little touches can have the biggest impact - I use texting to share quotes with friends, check in for a quick chat, or otherwise communicate that I am thinking of them.
-          Reach out on social media to give a personal touch - I have a friend who is a math professor. On Facebook, when I find a funny quote or picture related to math, I post it to her Facebook wall. That's one way I show her that I am thinking of her and let her know I am glad she's part of my life.
-          Pray for each other – Part of my precious 168 is taking time to pray and including the requests of those who are near and dear to me only make that blessing even more precious.
-          Make a regular appointment - I have a friend I meet with once a month for coffee. We meet the same day of the month at the same time but change the place every once in a while. By having a consistent meeting set, we increase the likelihood that we're able to get together. Sometimes life happens and we can't meet but that's where daily forgiveness kicks in and we move on.
-          Take personal responsibility – Saying "I am sorry" or "Please forgive me" are two ways to strengthen existing friendships or repair ones that are damaged. In a "just saying" society, taking personal responsibility can be very refreshing.
Certainly, friendships (AKA "Freundships") can be time consuming and take away from your precious 168. However, doing so can produce results that make the efforts very worthwhile. I challenge you to learn more about how to make friends and the benefits of such friendships. Better yet, make a Freundly investment in your current and future friendships. What are you waiting for?
Jane Freund is an author, speaker and book coach based in Boise, Idaho. She has written or co-written 16 print, audio and electronic books including "Best Friend Worst Enemy – Overcoming Self-Sabotage in YOUR Life" and "Wily Riley the Coyote Conqueror". Her latest book, "One Breath Closer to Heaven" will be available in November. Previously, Jane taught Communication for ten years at Boise State University. Her books can be found at (if you want to support local business) and Amazon.You can find her on Facebook at
Last week's Guest Blogger, Jennifer, wrote about "ME" time.  Read it here.
Happy Running!


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Sciatica: The treatment continues

My Happy Place
I have been diligently doing my best to treat a nagging case of Sciatica (mine) with stretching, Ibuprofen, ointments, rest, and clam shell exercises.  It wasn’t improving so I decided to call in the big guns! I had my first legitimate therapeutic massage today. 
I have long been leery of massage, mostly because I am ticklish. I even bypassed the free foot massages at the finish line of some of my favorite races – until the GrandTeton Relay. My teammate coerced me and I succumbed. I was immediately fond of the lady working on my ankles and feet. I would have brought her home if I could.
So … I messaged my friend, Raquel, and asked for more info yesterday. Today I had my first therapeutic massage. There was not any giggling going on!  Her elbow jammed into my left hip.  My heel touched my derriere. The massage oil smelled like a medicine cabinet belonging to a geriatric. I had to go to my happy place a time or two. It hurt so good!
Thus far, my left hip is not hurting. I can walk across the room or all around Costco without stopping to do a standing figure four stretch. I believe there is hope of recovery. That is important because I am writing a book about running and I think it would be a good selling point if I were still actually a runner! I am looking forward to an evening stroll to test the waters a bit. She told me she could fix it. I think I am a believer.
My take on therapeutic massage? Go for it!

Meet Raquel, my massage therapist.

Running Granny Green encourages women, especially grandmothers, to gain greater fitness by providing tips and inspiration to insure long years of joyful grand-parenting. The cookie recipes are a bonus!

Happy Running!
Carol - aka Running Granny Green
Follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Food Friday: Carol's Cinnamon Rolls

 It’s Food Friday and I am sharing another of my Go To Recipes.  Baking is one of my coping mechanisms (You can read about it in this book) as well as an expression of love. These Cinnamon Rolls never fail to please! This is an easy and inexpensive way to express love or concern to friends and neighbors.  Place them in a disposable baking pan and offer them up for any occasion when a gift of food is appropriate, such as birthdays, holidays, or when friends have cause to mourn.

Carol's Cinnamon Rolls

 Classic White Bread (Bread Machine Recipe)

 12 Ounces warm water
1 ¾ tsp Salt
2 Tbs butter or margarine
4 Cups Flour
2 Tbs Dry Milk
2 Tbs Sugar
2 ¼ Tbs Active Dry Yeast

 Select dough setting on bread machine.  When dough is ready, roll out to 12 x 18 inches.  Cover with filling as directed below.

Cinnamon Roll Filling

Brown Sugar

(Use more than you might think you  need.  Remember, as the dough raises the cinnamon and brown sugar will spread out, too.)

 Spread 2 - 4 Tbs of butter over surface of rolled dough.  Cover with a generous layer of brown sugar.  White sugar can be substituted in a pinch or if preferred.  Sprinkle with cinnamon until surface is dark.  Roll.  Use thread or floss to slice into fifteen 1 – 1 ½ inch pieces.  Place in greased 9x13 inch baking pan.  Let rise one hour.  Bake for 25 minutes at 350°.  Cool and frost with your favorite white frosting.

Raisins, nuts, or dried cranberries can be added for variety. However, the simplicity of the cinnamon rolls without extra goodies pleases even the pickiest of eaters.  Bake up a batch of Carol's Cinnamon Rolls to share with your Valentine, a friend, or a neighbor today!

Running Granny Green encourages women, especially grandmothers, to gain greater fitness by providing tips and inspiration to insure long years of joyful grand-parenting. The cookie recipes are a bonus!

Happy Running!
Carol - aka Running Granny Green
Follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Guest Blogger: Jennifer writes about "ME" time

Meet Jennifer, my first Guest Blogger! Jennifer hails from Utah, but began her journey in Parma, Idaho.  Her work at Franklin Covey has provided some insight that she wants to share.  She has a few words to say about taking care of your mental and emotional health.  Thank you, Jennifer, for contributing this week!
Jennifer writes about "ME" time.
When Carol asked me to guest post on her blog I had a couple of things run through my mind.  See what I did there?  "Run?" Get it?...  

Basically that's about all the running I do these days.  I feel like my mind is constantly running as I've entered into a new promotion at work and as I've been helping my parents get their Etsy shop, "Craftcoop" (wink wink) up and running.

Exercise for me these days consists of occasional walks by myself around my block before the sun sets, because living in the city will never be the same as country life, and daily rides on my stationary bike in my room.  I enjoy the 30 minutes or so that I can dedicate to that each day but that's about as far as it goes.  I have a lot of respect for people who have the dedication and the endurance to run 10 or more miles at once.  I know I could do it if I trained for it (for years) but I will save you the eye rolls and just admit right now that it's just never been my strong suit.

Since I'm not great at running I knew that another thing Carol likes to post are delicious recipes. I love food.  And when I say food, I really mean treats.  I could tell you all about how to make the Salted Caramel Snicker's Cupcakes I made this weekend and sold at my cousin's craft show but I won't.  They are the devil.  Literally though, they are made with Devil's food cake and they are the best.  

Since I clearly can't inspire you when it comes to healthy eating and exercising I want to talk about your minds and spirit for a minute.  Working at FranklinCovey we teach about Steven R. Covey's, "7 Habits of Highly Effective People" quite a bit.  I've read the book a few times and learn more every time I read it.  If you haven't read it before then you should seriously consider putting it on your list next.  If you read it way back in college then it's probably time for a refresh.  

One of my favorite habits is "Sharpen the Saw."  It talks about how we need to focus on being more balanced when it comes to the physical, social/emotional, mental and spiritual sides of us.  Being a more rounded person.  It's that much needed "me" time that we always find ourselves talking about after a long week of work or after finishing a large project.  Think about it.  What are those things that you enjoy doing for you and that you wish you had more time for?   Why aren't you making more time for it?

I really believe that the most effective people are those who make time for themselves in the midst of their jobs, children, errands, and craziness of life.  For some people that might be a long run, cooking, or sharing their talents with other people.  For me it's going to the movies, crafting, blogging, and (yes, I'm a 70-year-old grandma trapped in a 26-year-old body) cross-stitching.   These things help me escape my running mind after a busy day/week and really help me find joy in life.

We all get busy.  Believe me, I know.  I'm busy with my single/child-less life so I can't even begin to imagine how busy the rest of you are. #respect.  But I also know that there is always time for YOU.  Life is inevitably busy and occasionally dramatic; Don't let it get you down.  If you can only manage to get 20 minutes of "me" time right before bed, do it!  Shut down your social media apps, shut off your computer and TV and make it happen. 

Make sure that you are keeping yourself balanced.  If you catch yourself thinking, "I wish I had time to  _______" then focus the next day to fit it in whether it be physical, social, spiritual, mental or emotional.  You might not be able to make time every day but there is time at least once a week if your "_____" is reasonable. I mean, I could say "I wish I had more time to surf in Hawaii" but that's just not practical.  Besides, I'm terrified of sea creatures and all activities that could result in falling.  Anyways, you get what I'm saying.

Celebrate you.
Set goals.
Sharpen the saw.
Eat a cupcake.
Jennifer Hansen :)

You can read more and follow Jennifer at Anything But Ordinary !

Happy Running!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Great news!

Guest Bloggers coming soon!
I am happy to share some good news with you.  First, the Panther Girls Cross Country team earned first place at the district meet last night for the third year running.  Congratulations to them!  Hard work does pay off – a little talent helps, too. The boys’ team will also be going to the state meet after placing third.  Go Panthers!
In other news I am excited about something I am adding to this site.  I will be featuring a weekly Guest Blogger on Thursdays.  I have an interesting assortment of friends and I want to share some of them with you.  They are not all runners.  Some are exercise enthusiasts of a different sort, some are writers, and others might be great cooks!  This much I can promise – what they share will be positive and informative.  You might just find a new friend for yourself.
Stop by tomorrow to meet my first Guest Blogger, Jennifer, and learn what she has to say about “Me” time.
And in further news, I will be spending most of today writing, editing, and working on some cover ideas for my next book.  I promise to announce the title very soon! 

Happy Running!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

My next book: an excerpt

Here is a sneak peek from my current writing project. This book has a different focus than my previous works. It’s coming together and I hope to have it released shortly after the beginning of 2015, just in time to get everyone excited about the racing season – OR NOT if that isn’t your thing.

This excerpt is from  “The Toenail Lesson”

"Hot Needle Technique:  Heat a needle, paper clip, or other small metal object until it turns red hot.  You can do this over a stovetop, candle, or propane burner. This procedure’s purpose is two-fold.  1) The heat sterilizes the metal to avoid introducing bacteria into the wound.  2) Red hot metal will burn through toe and finger nails and/or skin, thus creating an escape route for the water or blood building beneath the nail. This procedure is painful.  Burning body parts is never pleasant and it smells nasty, but oh, what blessed relief when the task is completed! Unfortunately, the nail will inevitably be lost.  This is the case whether one relieves the pressure or continues to suffer with it.  Not to worry.  With time the nail will grow back.

What did I learn from the Toenail Lesson?

Acute pain, purposefully inflicted, can relieve chronic nagging pain that stops progression.  In other words, the embarrassment and grief of acknowledging wrongdoing, failure, or sin is painful yet short lived in comparison to the discomfort and sadness that accompanies continued transgression.

I am reminded of Hester Prynne and the Reverend Dimmesdale in Hawthorne’s, The Scarlet Letter.  Having committed the grave sin of adultery, Hester confesses and although she suffers public shame, she leads a healthy and productive life thereafter.  Her partner in sin, the Reverend Dimmesdale, hides his guilt, suffering privately and withering physically until the end of his days.  His progression and happiness were stifled because he lacked the courage to face the acute pain of repentance."

I hope to be able to share the title and book cover soon!

Happy Running!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Recover with a rest day

As I sit here sidelined by an injury I find myself aching to go for a run.  I’ve only been a non-runner for three days.  I have taken breaks longer than that in the past, but this is different.  I know I need to rest for a couple of weeks.  That makes me nervous for a few reasons:
I am afraid I will lose all my conditioning.

I eat when I get stressed!

I believe running boosts my immune system and cold and flu season is upon us.

I will miss my running buddies!
Rest I must, so this is how I am going to address my concerns:

Conditioning - I am going to ride my bike provided it doesn’t aggravate the injuries. I will also remind myself that my recent run workouts have been hindered by the injury and probably haven’t contributed much to conditioning.  And … when I return to running my fitness level will return.
Stress – That’s gonna be a tough one. I will attempt to control my food buying so there are few goodies at my fingertips. Until we get a hard frost I still have fresh vegetables in my garden.

Immune System – Attempt to control stress, rest,  and eat properly. (Foods to Strengthen ImmuneSystem).
Running Buddies – I will have to get creative and stay in touch via texting, emails, and Facebook.  This shouldn’t be a problem!

I can already see the silver lining of this cloud. Time off can mentally re-energize a runner.  As I said before, I am aching for a run and I haven’t yet missed more days than I do on any given week.  It’s the idea of not running that is getting to me. When I can finally return to my routine, I will be ready to devote the energy required to regain my running fitness. 
I can hardly wait for my next run.  This time off is driving me crazy!

Happy Running!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Running site for women: Zelle

Hey, running girls!  Look what I just found!  Zelle is a new site from Runners World created specifically for women.  It has recently gone live and it should be fun to watch this site take shape.
I have added a permanent link under "Running Helps" on the right hand column of this page.  Enjoy!

Happy Running!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Sciatica: A real pain for runners

Throwing everything I know at Sciatica

I’ve been experiencing some discomfort for a few weeks. Actually, it started the beginning of July during my half marathon training. It was just an occasional twinge in my left ankle, an indication that my Achilles tendon was on the verge of a flare up and that I should cut back on my mileage. I had a plan to do just that – after the half. The Burley SpudmanTriathlon was two weeks after the Fit For Life Half and I only had to run six miles. The Grand Teton Relay was three weeks after the Burley event and my distances were less than five miles – three times in 24 hours. 
By the time I had completed all of those races and spent many hours on an airplane traveling to New York State and back and helping with the cross country team, my Sciatic nerve was screaming at me in addition to the enlarged and painful Achilles tendon. I don't know which came first, sciatica or tendonitis. I just know they both hurt and impede my running. So, 15 – 16 weeks later I still haven’t taken enough time off and my left leg twinges and screams from hip to toe. 

I have also been less than diligent in my commitment to treatment. Stretching helps, but it needs to be done regularly. So it goes with ibuprofen therapy. Cream such as Blue Emu, doTerra Deep Blue, and Aspercreme offer temporary and sometimes smelly relief. It’s time to get proactive.

It’s time to get serious so here is my plan of attack:

Cross Country is ending, so I’m going to take some time off from running while allowing the above remedies to begin to work. This one may be the most difficult. I’m fighting the urge to push through the pain. Sometimes that truly is the answer. I’m afraid that four months of discomfort is telling me that this time pushing through is not the answer! I will let you know what works. (Massage therapy! The answer was massage therapy!)

Oh, and bananas. I intend to eat them - not to go bananas!

Running Granny Green encourages women, especially grandmothers, to gain greater fitness by providing tips and inspiration to insure long years of joyful grand-parenting. The cookie recipes are a bonus!

Happy Running!
Carol - aka Running Granny Green
Follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Idaho weather running challenges

I love this state. I still sing the state song I learned in the fourth grade, “And here we have Idaho,” but the weather patterns in the spring and fall of the year are so unpredictable that it presents a real challenge to outdoor exercise enthusiasts. Mornings are cool and afternoons are still blazing hot.  Last night I made a date with a friend to go for a bike ride this morning.  Alas, the wind is blowing heavily enough that we opted out.  No need to get blown over!

These changing weather conditions are actually one of the reasons I choose to run.  Although I really dislike running in the wind, there are few excuses to keep me from heading outside for a run.

 Too cold?  Layer up.

Too wet? Don a rain jacket and stay off the dirt roads.

Too snowy?  Well, running in a snowstorm is a lot of fun!

Too hot? Run early or run late.  Better yet, run in those cute wicking outfits you splurged on.

Too dark? That’s what headlamps and running buddies are for.

Too windy?  Yeah, probably.

I don’t always stick to my running schedule, however, the more excuses I can eliminate the more likely I am to be successful. Injuries and wind are my two biggest challenges and even then I can sometimes be found running with both.

What about you? What keeps you from being consistent?

Happy Running!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Editing the blog

Hi Friends,
I've made a few changes to this blog layout.  Yes, I'm finally figuring out how to add pages and hopefully make it easier to find older posts and information you are looking for. I've added a page for Recipes, because you all know how much I love to cook.  The Running Shoes! page will be where I review, whine about, and praise my running shoes.  I will also provide information on running stores that I offer great service.  I have moved the information and links to my books to none other than the Books! page.  That should make more room on the home page for fun pics, etc.

Do me a favor - take a tour and let me know what you think.  Just click on the tabs at the top of the page.  In the meantime ...

Happy Running!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Grand Teton Relay 2014 - the recap

Just over a year ago I stumbled upon a Facebook page that caught my attention and held it – for a year!  As I pondered the promised adventures of the Grand Teton Relay I was increasingly intrigued and my desire to participate grew with each Facebook post.  I visited the website and imagined what fun it would be to take on this challenge in the land of my roots.  The Tetons loomed in my mind as I began recruiting friends to participate.  I needed twelve runners for a team – twelve runners willing to spend nearly 30 hours cramped in two vehicles while forgoing sleep, hygiene, and nourishment.  These twelve runners would be asked to cover about 180 miles of some of the most majestic country in the world.  I began recruiting. I didn’t miss an opportunity to talk to runners at sporting events, church functions, and social gatherings.  I found it difficult to find twelve willing parties.  In the end I found I had assembled a team of some of the best people in the world! My team consisted of six men and six women.  Four of the runners had completed a marathon.  Three more had completed half marathons.  Three were in their twenties.  Three more were not-so-young.  Four were family. Two team members kind of hate to run. One only recently took up running and loves it.  None of the team had ever competed in a distance relay.  We didn’t really know what we were getting into. Our team name?  No Common Sense - Cons on the Run!

I have done some very cool things in my day, but this one ranks right up there with the best.  The Grand Teton Relay, or GTR as I will henceforth refer, was everything I had anticipated and more. I knew the scenery would be spectacular, for I had witnessed it before.  What I didn’t expect was the added bonus of a short summer storm that granted a variety of lighting (and lightening) to enhance the views.  As I stood in Ashton surveying the view of the Tetons in front of me and the evergreen covered hills of Island Park to my left, I formed a mental picture of the challenge we were about to undertake.  Our journey would take us to the east side of those majestic peaks!  It still boggles my mind. Several of our team had never witnessed this beautiful area.  I was so excited for them, but mostly for myself!

There is something special about shared discomfort, shared trials, shared pain.  Those shared experiences bond people together.  The GTR did that for No Common Sense and it happened in 30 short hours!

As No Common Sense began the relay, thunder and lightening and a down pour also commenced!  Our first participant, a not so eager runner, sprinted for a free sweatshirt.  He came up empty handed, arriving third, but he delighted his teammates and got us off to a great beginning.  The rain subsided after his four mile run and the day grew warmer. 

Fun Fact: Some people smile always.  So it was with our navigator, water boy, and runner, Andy.

The first twelve legs of the relay were challenging for most of the team.  We are lowlanders, residing at 2200’ above sea level, and we climbed into Island Park from 5300’ to as high as 7600’! Our youngest and strongest runner was battling bronchitis. We were adjusting to the elevation and anticipating the challenges of sleep deprivation and multiple runs in a few short hours. A stop for sightseeing at Mesa Falls and an attempt at a nap in some tall grass along Marysville Road helped Van 1 rejuvenate and prepare for our night run.

Fun Fact:  My father was born in Marysville. Marysville isn’t really there anymore – just the road. I didn’t know where we were napping until I returned home and reviewed the course map.

Another Fun Fact:  Night running is not as scary as I had expected.  In fact, it was my favorite leg of the course.
My second leg went something like this.  Having discovered that there is no way to recognize a night runner coming into the transition with only a headlamp and reflective vest in view, we determined to yell something creative.  “Prison Break” sounded like a fun option.  I also decided I would text Van 2 when I saw the “One Mile To Go” marker to let them know I would be arriving in a few minutes.  Well … this leg was back to 6000’ in elevation, it was cooler, there was no lightening of which I had been most concerned, and Steve Miller Band kept me company, especially this song! Take the Money and Run!

Nor was there any “One Mile To Go” marker!  I was running well, for me because I had adjusted to the elevation, etc.  I came upon the transition unexpectedly and began yelling, “Prison Break! PRISON BREAK! Where’s my runner!” He soon emerged from the restroom and was off and running!  Poor guy!  I cooled down with a cup of hot chocolate at the Tetonia City Park.

Another Fun Fact: Night runners can and may undress a little bit on a run and nobody will be the wiser.  This we learned from one of the nicest girls on the planet! Go figure.

And this one:  It is possible for volunteer drivers to sleep on top of their Suburban and inside of their Thule cargo carrier.

While Van 2 completed their night legs from Tetonia to Driggs and finished at the base of Targhee Ski Resort, we enjoyed a quick shower and another attempt at a few winks at Teton High School.  It is difficult to sleep when your babies are running relay races.  My two boys were in Van 2. After about an hour and a half of unsuccessful shut eye, we headed up Ski Hill Road to meet Van 2 and begin the last legs of our relay.

As each runner completed his/her last run and returned to the vehicle, the mood inside the Suburban became lighter. We had been enjoying the experience throughout, but the relief and satisfaction that came with each participant’s completion of the goal was contagious. Poor Van 2.

Fun Fact: Keep this one for future reference if you plan to participate in the GTR next year.  Van 1 has a much easier task than Van 2. The terrain is easier.  Van 1 gets right to the running while Van 2 waits several hours in anticipation. Van 1 finishes first – before TETON PASS!

I finished my last leg in Victor and handed off to the “Middle-aged Dentist Looking Fellow” who began the ascent of Teton Pass.  I could feel a sense of dread from my Van 2 teammates.  Van 1, on the other hand, was ready to party!

Teton Pass – 6200’ to 8438’ - four men!  The first climbed 561’ in 5.7 miles.  The second climbed 550 feet in 3.8 miles.  The third climbed 1192’ in 2.6 miles! The last descended 2300’ in 5.8 miles!

Fun Fact: The big brother is the little brother.

Two final runners took us from Wilson into Teton Village where we joined the party at the finish line! We soaked our feet in the cold water running through the resort.  I can’t remember what there was to eat, but I do remember the angel that massaged my feet and ankles!  I didn’t get her name, but I wanted to bring her home with me!

In the end, we finished in just under 29 hours.  I was hoping for thirty! We were faster than more than half of the teams! The weather was beautiful and there were no injuries or vehicle breakdowns.  We survived elevation, sleep deprivation, hunger, sweat, discomfort, and Sasquatch!  I lost two toe nails. Most importantly, we gained family members through our shared experience.  When we returned home we couldn’t stop talking about it.  Our friends who did not participate surely grew weary of our continued accounts.  They may think we have no common sense.  They may be correct.

Until next year … Go Team No Common Sense!

Feel free to comment on this post with your favorite memories of Grand Teton Relay 2014

Happy Running!
Follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.