Saturday, March 2, 2013

Getting the shoes laced up again

Zahnna, now 10. Too old to make it to the summit of all 48 of New Hampshire's 4,000-footers?

We've just come through a February where my primary aerobic exercise has been shoveling snow.

Seriously. We haven't bothered to get a snowblower since the neighbors' kids outgrew the job, and so I tackle the 150-foot long driveway all by myself. By hand.

It's not too bad, actually. Takes about two hours, depending on the type of snow. And I feel great afterwards. So why not?

Skiing just hasn't happened much this season, and running isn't pleasant when temps are down, daylight is scarce, and streets are lined with snowbanks. So shoveling fills the gap, especially since it's a must-do chore if we don't want to be completely snowbound.

Ah, but all this will change (I hope) starting now. It's March. The driveway is clear. It's not terrible out. The dogs need exercise. So off we go, back in the swing of things, starting today, with a short run out and back to a local pond, a favorite doggie destination.

Looking ahead, I would like to make progress this year on three 'fitness projects,' for lack of a better term.

1. Running in New Hampshire: Keep adding towns in New Hampshire with the goal of finishing this by May 14, 2016, as previously stated. With a lack of towns with races, this year I'll have to ramp up the "do-it-yourself" quotient.

2. Running in all 50 states: Several trips planned that should allow at least a half-dozen to be completed: Pennsylvania in March; Ohio, Indianapolis, West Virginia in May; Texas, Oklahoma, maybe others in September. Would love to get to 20 this year.

3. Hiking all N.H.'s 4,000-footers: I've been stuck at 30 peaks since a couple of years ago, with no time lately to fit in big long hikes during my preferred (non-winter) season of May through about October. But there's no reason I can't bag all the rest this year. Most are fairly tame; the only real challenge would be to find a nice day to bag three northern presidentials (Madison, Adams, Jefferson) that I'm still lacking. I might even try to bring along Zahnna, our getting-older German Shepard (10 years this month) to complete her 48, if her hips will allow. We'll see.

Bonus project: Last year I did a surprising amoung of biking, including several longish trips (to Harrisville, to the seacoast, etc.) that were very satisfying. Maybe this year I'll try for Lake Winnipesaukee (just to Alton, or all around in a day?), or the Connecticut River. Last year also saw my first-ever triathalon, and I'd like to keep doing those, too.

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