Archive for hills

Sunday 8/3

Posted in photos, road, running, shoes, trail, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on August 16, 2014 by afuntanilla

Ran my “staple” route as of late…home/chileno valley/Helen Putnam park west side and back home via the east side of park. This time, I mixed in the steepest hill 2 times. I did it first upon arrival, then ran about another mile around park and looped back to the hill. Again, it is not lengthy, but steep. 2 times felt good and I kept rolling along other trails and then the backside towards home.
A solid 8 miles on top of the bike/run yesterday.
Feeling good and ready to start pushing the envelope a bit more after I return from about 10 days of travel.

Here’s what I call “baldy hill” at Helen Putnam Park;


HOKA HUAKA: I’ve been using the shoe for about 2 weeks now and overall, like the shoe a lot. I’ve tried other HOKA shoes on before & did treadmill tests, but none of them ever felt right for me. Until these!
However, the big bummer I’ve come across is that the toe box seems to be tighter than I am accustomed to…this was evident by a huge blister the first day I did any trail running. It’s strange because the shoes do not feel tight at all….but for some reason, the right shoe toe box is causing me to get blisters. I’ve been wearing some Injinji socks and that has helped. Other than that 1st issue, which has not occurred again, my experience thus far has been quite good. I think there is something quite true about how the shoe “technology” is somehow lessening the impact of the pounding on pavement. I was very skeptical about this when I heard people talk about it, but I feel like I have experienced it too, so, I am now drinking the HOKA cool aid!

I do not wear the shoes on short, faster runs. I don’t think they are designed for that either. The HUAKA is not a specific trail shoe, but has been fine on the trails I have run, which so far have been non technical trails. Don’t know how this would do on heavy, rocky terrain. This is my new go to shoe for longer distance, road and trail.


Week 10 Run Report

Posted in motivation, quotes, road, running with tags , , , on March 13, 2012 by afuntanilla

Week 10. Not a whole lot of miles, but 3 out of 4 runs were good quality. Let’s focus on those. Wednesday, after work, I ran 4.23 miles at 8:59 pace. Very happy to get in under the 9:00 min mark. I didn’t even know my pace per mile until calculating distance afterwards. (for the record, i do not have my own Garmin anymore. I had the Garmin 110 and not 1, but 2 of them crapped out on me, so I’m not going to buy another Garmin watch. Although, sometimes I am able to use my friends’ Garmin and it seems to be ok….for now!)

Saturday, I ran 4 miles at 8:45 pace. WHOA! VERY HAPPY!! After the first mile, i just found another gear and was able to sustain it. I probably could have sustained for 1 more mile, but not much more than that…for now! That’s why we practice, right?? RIGHT!

Sunday rolled around and I waited until mid afternoon to head out on the roads. I usually go out within a couple hours of waking up, but I decided to enjoy some breakfast and morning time first. It had been lightly raining in Petaluma, but by the time I left, all was clear.
I altered my usual course a little bit which took me more into the “countryside” and involved more hills. Not steep, but rolling, and a good amount of them to keep my heart pumping strong. Coming into the last 1-1.5 miles, I had a clear choice to either go more flat the rest of the way or keep going with the hilly areas. I chose the hilly areas. That’s how I know I’m a runner. That’s how I know I am gonna reach the goals I set for myself.
Invigorated. Strong. Steadfast.
Sunday ended with 7 miles at 9:33 pace. I’m good with that.

Friday nite played a little tennis and totally getting into it. Can’t wait to play more!

I love those “little moments” when you “cross over”. When you chose the more difficult over the easy. When you go for uncomfortable-ness over comfort. Comfort, for me, is when I am home, snuggled on the couch or in bed. It doesn’t belong on my running route. Comfortable, for me, is sitting in a nice, comfy, oversized chair watching a movie while eating some popcorn. This, too, does not belong on my running route.
Does it always have to be difficult, tough, hard…NO, of course not. There are times to rest. To go slow. To take it easy. To taper for a race.

This is not that time. This is building mode. Onward

Week 10: Total running miles: 18

“If you don’t feel it, you will never get it.” -Goethe

Week 7 Run Report

Posted in motivation, races, road with tags , , , , , on February 21, 2012 by afuntanilla

Week 7 had me continuing to feel some effects of sickness, but it’s gone now as I head into Week 8.
Sill, I was able to get in 3 running days. I ran Tuesday and Wednesday in Petaluma. 4 miles and then 4.7 miles. I’ve mostly been running the same loop with some slight variations. The route starts in quiet neighborhoods and at midpoint is downtown amidst all the cute little shops. Then, I wind through more neighborhoods back to the starting point. Most of the route is flat, only a few small hills along the way. Petaluma is actually not very big. I know when I start getting into higher mileage, I will literally be running all over the town and will have seen everything.

My last run of the week was a 6.10 miler on Sunday. I incorporated 3 good hills into the first 2 miles and it was flat from thereon. A good run. On purpose, I ran without the iPod…just wanted to be with the morning and listen to the natural sounds around me.

Should be getting a job soon and can then look at whether or not I can logistically run the Hollywood Half Marathon in April. I hope so!

Week 7: Total approx mileage 14.7

Funtanilla Forty: Part 3

Posted in 40 mile run, motivation, photos, road, trail with tags , , , , , on October 3, 2010 by afuntanilla

A few ways down the road, I made a left hand turn just across from the San Leandro BART Station. On my left was the church I attended, faithfully, as a child; St. Leanders Church. The sky was still covered in the morning darkness and the streets still sleepy on this Saturday morning. I looked over at the church and saw all 3 main front doors were open and light emerging from inside. Spontaneously, I ran up the few steps and walked inside and stood at the main entrance between the formal church area and the foyer. I stood tall and took a few deep breaths. The smell of the inside is so distinct..i have no description to tell you. Maybe kinda musty. Earthy. Church-y.

I looked at the pews and remembered the times I sat in them, my small body and tiny legs never touching the floor; i remembered the times i stood in line for communion and how i so loved the CEREMONY of that…still do. Flashes of more memories of times my grandma and me would go in when it was empty, light some candles and pray silently & together for those we had lost. And then, flashes of her (grandma) own funeral. She laid in her casket so still; stately, almost. In just that minute at the church, I felt peace, love & determination. I marched onward. Or ran, rather.

The next few miles was spent in my old neighborhood, zig-zagging through the streets I walked along..the streets where I had my paper route. Memories flashed of certain houses where I would go and collect the newspaper fee and cross my fingers for a .50 or $1.00 tip so I could go play video games later at the 7-Eleven. Man, I loved that!!

Kera, Scott & Sharon were in support car following me. I grabbed a little water from them and kept going. Unfortunately, they kinda lost me after that and I didn’t see them for another 4-5 miles and I was dying for water. I’m not a runner who can go without water for long and I was also starting to stress about not being able to see them. We had map issues that they had been trying to get figured out…god bless ’em. It was not easy.

At approx Mile 5, I made the very small climb up to my old high school, Bishop O’Dowd. It is situated on the top of a hill and as I made my way to the top, I had the most spectacular view of the San Francisco Bay. It was such a clear morning I could see clear across to San Francisco. The sunlight at that moment was just if everything was glowing. I wish I could have taken a photo of that moment. Oh well…it is now etched in my brain memory bank.

I doubled back a bit and somewhere between mile 6-7, I see someone waiting for me; STACEY!! WOW. How amazing to see her. We had not seen each other in about 24 years! We had re-connected on facebook and it was questionable whether she would be able to meet me or not. She worked her schedule to come run about 3-4 miles with and I was so thrilled!! We ran by our junior high school, Bancroft, which was so fitting because we only went to school together for 7th-9th grades. Thank you, Stacey, for making time and being a part of this special run!! You ROCK!

Stacey & I

Stacey’s jaunt with me ended in Bay-o-Vista, where her mom lives and she was gonna get a ride back to her vehicle. Kera and Sharon drove her up the steep ass hill to mom’s house and Scott was now running with me. He picked the perfect time as now it was all hard for the next 11 or so miles. We walked up a small steep hill and then a LOOOOONG steep hill. A little downhill and into Lake Chabot. Before we went onto trails, we had to wait for support car which had more map problems. (they didn’t know they had a harder job than I did. LOL) They arrived about 20 minutes later and we refueled and went to tackle the varied terrain of approx 9 miles around the Lake.

early into trail run. gorgeous

me & stud runner, Scott

the latter miles

As you can tell from the pictures, the trail was varied. Beginning and end are paved. In between, we ran on wide, loose dirt trail, then later, narrow single track. It was all up/down with some sections very steep on both sides. What we noticed was the drop in temperature whenever we were on the single track, shady sections. It felt about 10 degrees cooler. Otherwise, we were basically at the mercy of the sun. Not a lot of shade. We saw some mountain bikers, runners, walkers, hikers, but all in all, not too many people. A gorgeous place surrounded by a pretty lake.

Exiting the trail, we ran into the parking lot and I see someone waving madly at us..KIM! I was Kim’s roommate in SF about 8 years ago and we have remained close ever since!!Thanks for making time for me, Kimmy!! She had found support crew and they all waited for us at the park.

Kim & I

Kim, me, Scott & Kera

We stopped, visited & refueled. It was awesome to see them after those hard miles on trail. I changed my shoes and we headed back up a steep hill to get back into town. Here’s where some major energy came from my twitter peeps!

Happy to see the Peeps!

2 twitter friends flew out from atlanta, 2 of them drove up from los angeles and 1 lives in bay area.

As we were trudging/walking up the steep hill, here comes another support car and they were honking, playing music, getting out of car to take pictures and even run with me. CRAZY, AWESOME FRIENDS!

Crazy, awesome NEVA joining in the run!!

Scott on the downhill

Kera had gotten out the car to walk, then run with us on the hill. She surprised me as I didn’t think she would run at all…but she did! Even stubborn twitter peep Lynn got out of car and ran a bit. I was so incredibly delighted!!

Lynn on the Run!

Kera & I on the downhill

We had a very long downhill of the same hill we went up earlier and you might think we ran the entire way down, but we didn’t. It was pretty steep and the pounding that takes on your legs, your quads in particular is incredible….so it was walk/run/walk. All their energy definitely gave me a boost and I needed it as I was just past the half-way at about 21 miles. It was a little startling to know I still had so much more to go.

At approx Mile 22

More to follow. Stay tuned!

spontaneous adjustments

Posted in motivation, races, road with tags , , , , , , , , on June 19, 2010 by afuntanilla

“Each of us is faced with the same challenge; to put on our shorts and shoes and get out the door” – D.E.

Earlier in the week, a co-worker mentioned he had an extra 10k race entry if I wanted it for today, Saturday. I accepted. I got up this morning, with full intentions on running the 10k race called The Possum Trot.

Morning began with a BAD cup of coffee. Yesterday, I shopped at Dekalb Farmers Market. That is THE place for cheap, healthy, organic food. It is NOT the place to buy coffee beans. I learned the hard way. 😦    (In 3 weeks, I will travel to LA and get some damn PEETS, THANK GOODNESS)

So, i dumped out the coffee and had a little green tea along with my Clif Bar. Then, i looked at the clock & it was 6:50am. YIKES. Race start was at 7:30am and I had at least a 20 min drive.

Well, off I went. Drove up to Roswell in search of race location. I found the area but then had to get re-routed because some roads were blocked off. By the time I found the parking lot, it was already a few minutes past 7:30am and I still couldn’t even see the starting line or anything.

So…i decided to just leave and go run somewhere else. My friend was also not running the race so I was not leaving him in the lurch or anything.

While driving back into Atlanta, I remembered that some people would be out running the traditional “Peachtree Prep Run” and so I figured I would join in somewhere along Peachtree. In case you DON’T KNOW, The PEACHTREE ROAD RACE is held annually on 4th of July in Atlanta. It is the largest 10k in the United States. 55,000 people. Running on July 4th in the Atlanta heat & humidity. The prep run is done a couple of saturdays in succession prior to race day. It’s pretty cool to go out and see so many people running along Peachtree as they gear up for the race.

I parked about 1.5 miles into the race route and started running. It was 80 degrees & 80 percent humidity by this time, 8:00am. Still, I was happy to find some people out there even if I said no words to anyone. I do most runs solo, by choice, but it’s always good to mix it up a bit. I ran along the course for 2.5 miles, incorporating the biggest hill leading up to Piedmont Hospital & then turned around and went back…this way, i would get the longer hill back to where my car was parked. I ended up only running 4.5 miles but since it was this particular route, i was fine with the outcome. It was brutal out there, but i still managed less than 10 min mile pace even with the hills. I added another mile walking around a neighborhood I had never encountered before.

One of the coolest things about the Peachtree Road Race that I was reminded of today is that ANYONE & EVERYONE participates; elite runners, casual runners, people who are overweight or obese are out there walking/running, military folks dressed in all their gear & boots, wheelchair racers, children, people who have never run before, people who run everyday…it’s a race for everyone…running does not discriminate.

Whoever you are, I support you to get your sneaks on and get those feet movin’. Get that blood pumpin’. This is life, baby! THIS IS LIFE!!

hills, nutrition, shoes, etc..

Posted in cooking, photos, road, shoes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 17, 2010 by afuntanilla

Mid week I did some more speed and hill work. Here’s a couple of photos of the 2 hills I have been running my hill sprint repeats. These workouts are not lengthy, but they are strenuous and I feel damn satisfied afterwards.

The first Hill (pic #1) is longer. The 2nd hill (pic #2) is shorter, steeper. I’ve been running sprint repeats of both.

Saturday I ran a short, hilly, 3 miler. Sunday, I ran a flat 4.5 miles. The heat & humidity are creeping higher. You would think after living in Atlanta for 10 years it would be a non-factor, but it is very much still a factor. Mixed in with the small amount of miles has time at the gym. Just trying to get stronger & faster.

In honor of my beloved San Francisco Giants, I wore these KSWISS shoes today that i picked up on my trip in March for LA MARATHON.

I have 3 pairs of KSWISS shoes; the ones above which are KSWISS Tubes and 2 pairs of KSWISS K-Onas – one blue pair & one red pair. I love them all. The K-Onas are very light, but still have great support. The Tubes are heavier with more cushion. I wore ASICS for years, but over the last year, I have found a new love with these shoes.

One of the things I have written about in the past is nutrition. Often times, i will decide, for different reasons, to cut certain foods from my diet. Sometimes it has been sugar, meat, alcohol, etc…Well…as it has happened over the last month, I have just been “organically” (no pun intended) reading more about nutrition and understanding more about how different foods affect my body. So, in a nutshell, I have been eating almost entirely a fresh food/vegetarian diet. I picked up this awesome book called THRIVE by Brendan Brazier, a Vegan Triathlete. Its been a very informative & compelling read. I’m enjoying learning more about what I put into my body. One of the best things about the book is that it contains a lot of very SIMPLE recipes. (if you have followed me…you know i need SIMPLE!!) My goal is not to adhere to a Vegan diet — there are certain items i am just not willing to give up…like 1/2 & 1/2 in my coffee. 🙂 The main thing for me is to understand what I am eating and why and make choices that are healthy for me. I’ve been enjoying putting together the new recipes and shopping for different items. One of the most glaring things i have noticed since modifying my nutrition is the “lightness” i feel. It’s amazing how eating certain foods just make one feel ridiculously heavy! I look forward to more reading, more learning and healthy eating.

I working on a new dream…a new plan. Will announce soon.

Stay strong. Train hard. Train smart. Love and Live BIG.

hey little butterfly

Posted in road, trail, travel with tags , , , , , , , , on May 11, 2010 by afuntanilla

Did some short, high intensity workouts during the week on Wednesday & Thursday. Wednesday was treadmill + weights. Thursday was sprint hill repeats outside. The Hill sprints were also on a day when it was about 88 degrees, so i am especially pleased with that workout. I want to be faster. Bottom Line. Faster on flats, faster on hills.

Saturday – ran 3 miles at 8:43 pace. flat and some small up/down areas

Sunday – went back to Kennesaw and ran same 5 mile route I ran last weekend with Jeff. I pushed the entire way. Didn’t stop at all. (last week, i stopped about 2-3 times). My time was a full 3 minutes faster than last week. THRILLED. There was low humidity yesterday so that definitely helped! Those 5 miles are no joke.

I felt happy and free and had fun. I wasn’t smiling or nothin’, but i was happy inside. A runners happiness. You know what I’m talkin about…

I’m glad to see some of my different workouts paying off.

I had been thinking of going out to Bay Area to run Double Dipsea on June 26th…but flights are over $400. yikes. I might just take the $ and buy a new SUUNTO watch I have my eye on…

Lastly, I saw a very beautiful blue and black butterfly while I was on the trail. At one point, it was right on front of me, weaving right and left…as if it were my guide…

Cheers —

is it spring yet?

Posted in road with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 1, 2010 by afuntanilla

So, I guess this past week was the 4th run with the now growing group from work. Week 1 = 2 people. Week 2 = 4 people. Week 3 = 3 people. Week 4 = 9 people. 9 people! THAT IS A BIG DEAL. I was thrilled. And it was a cold, windy day, no less. We have been running the same 3.67 mile loop from our office and back, but i think i am gonna change it up this week so we can avoid some of the heavy car traffic. A route change also means it might be more challenging due to the hills. But, hey, challenge is good, right!! I will keep you posted on the group’s reaction. It will also be interesting to see how many people show…as weather is supposed to be about 39/rainy…coldest day of the next week. Hmmm..

On the last run, we had 2 that struggled. I backtracked twice to run, run/walk with each person. I just wanted to make sure no one felt left out. After my first backtrack episode, i went ahead and was almost in a dead sprint for 1 mile to catch up with the leaders. Man, that was tough, but felt GREAT and INVIGORATING! I finished with the lead pack and then circled back to go the rest of the way with the remaining 2. Another good group session.

I had a good week of running. I’m purposely only running 4 days a week and not 5. Due to the “success” i felt on my last half-marathon & full-marathon, I’m more relaxed about “schedules”, etc.. I am learning what my body can do on what amount of training. I am learning, for me, it might not be about QUANTITY, but OVERALL QUALITY. I’ve read about so many running programs that show high mileage for training and for my body, I think I am finding something different that can work. Yesterday, I ran a hilly 12.5 miles through the streets of Atlanta. I had wanted to go out to Silver Comet Trail for just even a bit of nature, but it just didn’t work out. I look forward to getting to some trails though soon…i need some nature time, for sure. After a route with both uphills & downhills, the last 1-1/2 miles I deliberately incorporated the toughest hill i could find. I think that’s how you know you are dedicated…when you deliberately & purposely put tough things in your training path. These hills now will make the flatlands of Los Angeles all that much sweeter to run. right?

Went bowling later that night. Sucked, big time. Our group had major gutter balls!!

Decided NOT to layer up again for the cold/wind today and took it to treadmill instead. 5+ strong miles as I sweated out the cocktail toxins of the bowling evening. Felt pretty tired at first, but then just settled in and got stronger. As the time and mileage increased on the treadmill, so did my strength. I could feel my back strong, my arms strong, my legs finding another gear….a good weekend.

Whoever you are and whatever you are doing, whatever you are aiming for, I wish you all the best! GO TO IT!


Feb 28: 5.10 miles – treadmill

Feb 27: 12.5 miles – outside

Feb 24: 5.0 miles – treadmill

Feb 23: 4.4 miles – outside

season’s changin’

Posted in motivation, quotes, road with tags , , , , , , , , , on September 4, 2009 by afuntanilla

yesterday’s weather was near perfect. don’t know the exact temperature, but it was delicious. my whole body could just feel fall is near. AHH….my favorite time of year.

ran a wonderful 5 miles w/ hills and all was good.

one of my favorite quotes: “Every morning in Africa a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must move faster than the lion or it will not survive. Every morning a lion wakes up and it knows it must move faster than the slowest gazelle or it will starve. It doesn’t matter if you are the lion or the gazelle, when the sun comes up, you better be moving.” Maurice Greene (attributed to Roger Bannister shortly after running the first sub-4 mile)

oh, yeah. here are the recent mile #’s

Posted in motivation, quotes, road with tags , , , , , on August 12, 2009 by afuntanilla

Aug 9: 12 miles – Silver Comet Trail w/ Jeff
Aug 8: 5 miles – outside, hills
Aug 6: 4.6 miles – outside, hills
Aug 5: 3.5 miles – treadmill w/ incline
Aug 4: 4 miles – Silver Comet w/ Jeff

Week total = 29.1
I gotta keep increasing it. Still a bit behind schedule. Still, a good week.

“It’s not where you’re from; it’s where you’re going. It’s not what you drive; it’s what drives you. It’s not what’s on you; it’s what’s in you. It’s not what you think; it’s what you know.”
—Gatorade commercial