<![CDATA[ - 13 miles in 2013]]>Thu, 11 Feb 2016 01:48:19 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[One Love!]]>Sun, 14 Jul 2013 03:00:08 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/one-lovePost 5k pichappy the race is over!
This post is one big shout-out to my 36 donors.  Yup 36 people (and more counting partners) threw down some cash to support me in my run today and in my effort to raise $1,000 for the Vermont Workers' Center and Migrant Justice.

Thank y'all!!  I raised $1,214 in total!  

"One Love" is the theme of the day.  I ran the Gay 5K this morning, put on by Blue Ridge Pride.  "One Love" people cheered from the sidelines.  Yup, one love that unites people.  Not only in partnership, but ultimately, I believe it's love that unites us all -- humans and all consciousness.  It's love that motivates me to do my work, and to run and raise money.  And to fight injustice.  If we could transcend the hate and difference, we would see that our earth is abundant and we are more than capable of caring for ourselves and everything on and in this planet.  

Love y'all!  I'm inspired to keep running...

PS - Art is forthcoming.  I've done 5 and have 31 more to go.  I'm going in order of donation received, so if you gave more recently, it may be a while.  I do take requests, though I may not honor them :)

<![CDATA[An Adventurous Race Day]]>Fri, 05 Jul 2013 02:29:27 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/an-adventurous-race-dayPicturethis image does not capture the intensity of the rain
I'll get right to the point.  I didn't run today.  The weather has been terrible for the last few days -- torrential rains, flash flooding.  I emailed the race organizers and despite the crazy weather, they said it was "on," rain or shine.

I packed a full change of clothes and Brandon came along for the adventure.  Cherokee, NC is just over an hour from our house in Asheville. The 5K was a sunset July 4 race--a much more civilized time than the 7 or 8am 5K's happening in Asheville.

About 45 minutes into our drive, I had to brake quickly around a curve due to a recently downed tree in the road.  It landed on a power line and the connection point was smoking so I decided to turn around as quickly as possible and seek an alternative route.

On our way to Cherokee, we saw a young man walking in the rain and had said that if we were going in his direction, we would have stopped to offer him a ride.  Once we got turned around, we saw him again and this time pulled over to offer him a ride.  He told us he started walking at 7:30 in the morning and only had gotten one ride.  We drove him about 30 miles and got him within 3 miles of his destination. 

Unfortunately, with the long detour, my eta was going to be 15 minutes after the run was scheduled to start.  Even if I thought I could have jumped in late, we saw that the secondary road was also closed (though there was another detour).

The weather is nutty right now.  The French Broad River is flooding right now and I've gotten multiple flash flood alerts on my cell.  Talking to my Vermont peeps and they're dealing with the same thing.  I saw today that Route 100 through the Granville Gulf was washing out, only recently repaved due to a huge washout during TS Irene.

I'm looking for another race while Exercise your Rights is happening.   Don't worry my dear donors, I'll earn by keep!  And on that note, HUGE THANKS to everyone who donated to my run.  I've raised $1,154 so far and will still accept donations.  Everyone will get a special piece of digital "Val" art. 

<![CDATA[5K in Cherokee - it rhymes!]]>Mon, 03 Jun 2013 20:22:24 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/5k-in-cherokee-it-rhymesAs part of my commitment to participating in Exercise your Rights, I am going to run a 5K (3.1 miles) between July 4 - 14.  I've been dilly-dallying in picking a race because I may be in Seattle during that time period.  But, alas, I cannot keep putting this off -- I will run the July 4th Sunset 5K in Cherokee, NC.   If for some reason I end up in Seattle, I've already picked the Torchlight 5K (night of July 3/4 at midnight).  

I'm looking forward to running in Cherokee.  It's sacred land and the time is sensible -- unlike all the other 8am start times, this 5K starts at 7:45pm.  Perhaps there will be fireworks after?
Me, after last year's CMYK 5K in Seattle
This means I will begin fundraising to meet my $1,000 goal.  Knowing that I'm committed to this goal and to continue running to do a half marathon in Fall REALLY motivates me to get out and run.  Thank you!

Here's the link to donate to my page:  http://www.crowdrise.com/EYROutofState/fundraiser/ValerieCosta  

$990 to go!
<![CDATA[5K without stopping!]]>Thu, 30 May 2013 01:24:51 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/5k-without-stoppingPictureHappy to home.. but crud, I still have work to do!
I like to think that something is changing in me... that I'm actually developing this running "habit" that I'm yearning to have.  That it can move away from the hopeful habits (meditation, accordion playing, painting) and into the actual habits category.  I won't go into the latter though.

Getting back into the groove after my NOLA trip and subsequent 1.5 week laryngitis/lung coughing fest was not as hard as I thought it would be.  I went out three times last week, including twice on beautiful trails in town.  This past weekend B and I drove up to Cincinnati for a whirlwind birthday party for B's 4 year old nephew, so Fri-Sun were a wash.  But Monday I hit the pavement and hit my first benchmark --- 3.1 miles, a true 5k -- without stopping.

And I did it again today.  3.35 miles. Now, my time is so slow that I'm not even going to post.  I know I could do better, because unlike in the past, my lungs weren't what slowed me down, it was my leg muscles.  

One of the things I love is how running actually helps me slow down.  I count cats, look at the plants, say hi to the dog walkers, scope out bumper stickers... like the one above!  I saw this on a car in my neighborhood, with North Carolina plates.  

There are a lot of Vermonters here.  I spend some time in every run thinking about why I care, why I'm going to fundraise.  The running is good for me -- nothing like guilt and peer pressure to get me to do something.  But the fundraising is because I actually believe that the "impossible" is happening in Vermont... that people are steadily claiming their power and voice there and instituting REAL changes.  Don't get me started on North Carolina!
<![CDATA[I'm Back!]]>Tue, 21 May 2013 00:56:25 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/im-backPicture
I went for my first run in a while - too long but I've been recovering from a cold with a lingering cough that made running a no-go.  I can't be a slacker though, with Exercise Your Rights

Asheville in the spring is amazing.  It's perfect outside right now.  In the 70s, sunny, birds a'singing, flowers a'blooming.  A runner's dream.  

Since I plan on doing a trail run in the fall, I decided to check out a trail 20 minutes from my apartment at the Bent Creek Experimental Forest. 

Red clover like this was along the trail
Aaaah, trail running.  This is the good stuff.  I spent about a half hour jogging around the area and orienting myself.  I saw a few mountain bikers and two walkers -- that was all in the human category.  Otherwise, lots of birds, a few bugs, and lots of interesting plants.  

I just read there's a 6 mile loop from the trailhead and with any luck I can figure out how to follow that the next time I head out.  And for the hot summer days, there's also a lake for swimming.  

Too good to be true?  Oh well, there's the whole running part.  It's easier than when I started, but I still have a looooong way to go to get to 13.1 miles. 

On that note, TWICE this week I've seen 13.1 bumper stickers.  A little "get moving" message from the universe to me.  
<![CDATA[Running and Traveling]]>Tue, 07 May 2013 00:51:28 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/running-and-travelingPicture
Cafe du monde aftermath
One of the greatest obstacles to developing a running habit is my travel schedule.  I made a last minute decision to drive 12+ hours last week to visit Erin and Hannah in New Orleans.  I even packed my running gear. 

Did I run?  Nope.

Oy.  I've gotta step this running thing up if I'm actually going to survive a half marathon.  That's 10.5 more miles than I can run now.  If anyone reads this, what has helped you stay disciplined?  How do you squeeze in runs when you're in an unfamiliar place?

I'm energized to start up again.  I went out today and plan on heading out tomorrow. 

Miles: 1.85
Time: 25 minutes
Cats spotted: Only one.  With a giant black splotch covering its nose.

Insights:  Being outside, jogging, is good for me.  I enjoy it when I'm out. 

Extra insights:  All that driving and listening to esoteric lectures that Brandon shared with me really drilled in the interconnectedness of all our struggles.  All of my work -- five different clients at this point -- all the inequity and injustice they are fighting all ties to the same root causes.  Political power and money controlled by a select few.  Manufactured consent -- our lives our designed to reinforce this power structure.  We need band aids but we also need to reclaim our lives as our own, our governments as ours, and our humanity as shared. 

<![CDATA[Cake for Dinner, Ice Cream for Lunch]]>Thu, 18 Apr 2013 22:28:53 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/cake-for-dinner-ice-cream-for-lunchPicture
My sole goal for last week and this week has been to leave my apartment and jog.  No mileage or time goals... though I suppose I have some in my head. 

Today's jog went fairly well considering I had cake for dinner last night and then ice cream for lunch.  Not a very smart two-fer, I admit.... and I could definitely feel I was lacking the energy of my last run.  Though, I cut a minute off my last time.

Mileage & Time:  1.85 miles, 25 minutes
Cat spotted: 4 (2 new ones!)
Insights?  I need to freshen up my playlist already.  Do you suggest any good running songs?

<![CDATA[Day 3: For Runners...and Spectators]]>Wed, 17 Apr 2013 01:04:35 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/day-3-for-runnersand-spectatorsPicture
I took a three day break.  I'm not going to be too hard on myself but I need to refrain from two tamale with rice and beans plates from Taqueria Gonzalez on a day I hope to run (Sunday). 

Yesterday's bombings at the Boston Marathon threw me off -- I stopped working and all productivity around 4:30.  Boston's one of the places I call home, and though there's senseless acts of violence perpetrated regularly around the world, it's different when it happens at home.  We're fortunate here in the US that we don't experience this very often.  I always loved Marathon Monday when I lived in the city -- many people have the day off and line the streets with beers and BBQ to cheer on the runners.  I remember beautiful, bright, sunny, warm Marathon Mondays, hanging out on Beacon street, about a mile from the finish.  I remember clearly protesting the IMF and World Bank meetings in DC in 2001, returning late on a Sunday, only to be woken my the sound of F15's along the marathon route the following morning and asking my roommate if we were at war.  Lots of love to everyone affected yesterday and to the families of those who've died.  I hope there is a peaceful solution to this madness.

Today I had no excuse for not running.  I finally felt caught up enough to leave the virtual shackles of my computer, only to find that my iPod was dead.  Now, can't you live without music for 20 minutes?  Yes, but I don't want to.  So I waited.

Good news is I jogged 26 minutes without stopping.  1.84 miles, which gives me a pretty slow, near walking pace.  But the point is to improve and just get out and move, so I'm going to say this is a victory for Val!

Cats spotted:  Only one :( 
Music of the Day:  Loud Pipes by Ratatat

<![CDATA[2 runs in 3 days]]>Sat, 13 Apr 2013 04:08:31 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/2-runs-in-3-daysMy first two runs were more like jogs.. short ones.  I'm giving myself two weeks -- this and next -- to just get outside and run/jog.  Not mileage or time goals right now, only the achievement of getting dressed and out the door. 

RUN 1 - Wednesday, April 10th
Cats spotted:  4.  Two gray, two orange.
Mileage & Minutes:  16 minutes jog, 6 minutes walk.

Things of note:  Not a very ambitious start, but I found the beginning of a pleasant route from my apartment, and I saw four cats!

RUN 2- Friday, April 12th
Cats spotted: 1.  White and black, squatting on a porch.
Mileage & Minutes: 18 minutes jog, 2 minutes walk.  6 minutes jog.

Things of note: There is so much wild garlic on the lawns of the homes I pass. It is edible!  I made a delicious potato and wild garlic soup last night.
Wild garlic - though ours isn't flowering yet. Allium vineale.
<![CDATA[13 miles in 2013]]>Sat, 13 Apr 2013 03:57:48 GMThttp://www.valeriecosta.com/13-miles-in-2013/13-miles-in-2013In high school I joined the cross country team because I really wanted to do some kind of sport but was intimidated by the years of training and experience that the others required.  Cross country was different -- I had never run formally before my first practice, and I almost died when the coach sent all of us newbies out on an 'easy' 3 mile run. 

Four months later I could run a 3.1 mile race in under a half hour -- certainly no grand time achievement, but a vast improvement over my first day, so quickly out of breath from starting out way to fast.  By the end of the season I also met my first boyfriend.  So I had fond memories of running in high school.

Fast forward almost 15 years.  Running never became a "habit," though I've had a few sustained periods of increased physical activity.  Since I sit all day, I'm starting to feel a little too stiff for my liking. 
One of my Aril Consulting clients, the Vermont Workers' Center, is teaming up again with their close ally Migrant Justice and holding Exercise Your Rights, a crowdfunding campaign to raise money for the two organizations.  I am on the planning team and like last year will try to raise $1,000 from now til July. 

I'm going to run two races.  The first will be a 5k for Exercise your Rights.  But I want to keep up the momentum, because once I ran my race last August and drank that milkshake I'd been waiting for, I didn't run again.  This year I plan on running a half marathon in mid-September.  13.1 miles.  My goal -- to finish the race and more importantly, to make running a habit.   I love my caloric vices too much to give those up. 

Keep an eye on this blog for my progress and to cheer me on!