running

Running

Sweat, Laughter & Pizza Rolls

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On March 28th I started my first run club with Salomon. I got a job as Community Marketing Manager for the PNW and since then, my life has turned into one happy pizza-roll eating party.

Before I got this position I was slanging shirts for Choose Mountains and dreaming about creating a run club. I was already wearing Salomon vests, shoes and was an ambassador. When I heard they were expanding to the northwest and needed someone to do community events, it only seemed right to jump on that.

Boy, has it just filled my heart. I now have an opportunity to create a run club that I have always wanted but I get to share my favorite brand by letting others demo the shoes for our run.

Naturally by nature I am shy. I feel like when I’m in a position to lead, I can show up fully and be my best self but if I’m not the lead, I will always let others take over most conversations so I was nervous at first. On my first day, 25 people showed up and I was like “shit, this is amazing!!!”. Since then it’s been a big party. Everyone that shows up I now consider a friend and they make my job easy.

I’ve seen people who have never run before show up. I have seen people get faster and faster over time. I’ve also seen someone fall and have a bad ankle sprain and everyone come together to help get her safely off the mountain. More than anything I see people come together and forget whatever’s going on outside of the evening together. I slang 90’s mom snacks from my mom van after every run (pizza rolls, pop tarts, watermelon and drinks) and everyone just belongs. 

I haven’t been updating this blog at all, but know I’ve been busy making friends and watching this community grow. If you have fear when wondering if you should come or not, just show up. Don’t worry about anything because we all have a place on the mountain and keep coming back and watch how fast you start to feel more comfortable.

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If you want to join, we meet on Thursdays at 6pm usually at a Trailhead around Tiger Mountain in Issaquah— here is the link to our fb group that has specific events:

Salomon Run Club Page

I promise you will have fun! Buttttttt you must show up with an open heart!

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Running

Finishing My First Ultramarathon

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I didn’t write a post directly following my race. So here I am now, sitting in an airport getting ready to meet my boyfriend in Sunriver, Oregon and figured this is a great opportunity for a follow up.

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I can’t believe despite my injury, I finished that race. I felt like it went as perfect as it could have gone. The first 20 miles were pretty relaxing and I kept a pace that would allow me to save my energy and ENJOY the race in its entirety. As you know from the previous post, I chose the Deception Pass 50k through Rainshadow Running. There was only 4500 ft of gain which was nice to keep it runnable  and not toooooo much up and downhill which  benefited me since having that knee problem. I stayed with Becca for the ENTIRE race as well. That was really the best part. Sometimes we’d talk for awhile, made some friends around us, other times we ran in silence trying to keep our groove and mind right.  

My boyfriend drove Becca and I which allowed us to tear up watching “How to run 100 miles” for the millionth time on the car ride down. That is my goal. I would love to run 100 miles someday. When I first got sober I was obsessed with Scott Jurek, Rich Roll and Dean Karnazes. I read books about ultrarunning continuously before I even fathomed the idea of running more than 10 miles. 10 miles was a lot for me in 2013. In my mind, an ultra was IMPOSSIBLE. In 2013 I would run every single day. It was usually only 3-7 miles but I did it. I didn’t know about headlamps or reflective gear and I found myself only running in the dark. See- I was a party animal so when I stopped drinking and doing drugs I found myself restless in the evenings. Evenings were usually my time to party with people I barely knew and now I was left alone. I cut everyone out to stay healthy. With no friends and restless evenings - I found myself running after the sun went down, fired up by adrenaline and loving every moment of it. I would listen to all those books via audiobook so that I didn’t have time to think about anything else on a run and keeping me forever inspired. I think addicts make great atheletes because if we stop the very thing that we loved most (destroying our bodies with drugs/alc.) then we have to channel all that addictive energy somewhere. So that’s what I did. I ran. All I could think about was running. I’m not the fastest and I didn’t care how long I ran, I just know that I always felt better after it was completed.

in 2015 I stopped running because I started mountaineering and everyone in the course kept telling me to stop because running hurts your knees and it would ruin climbing so I just followed directions. I climbed a couple volcanoes that year and realized that I hate carrying 45 pounds on my back and moving slowly. Climbing never got my heart rate up and I found myself constantly hating the process of training. When I would climb with the group I would just tell myself to go one step at a time and think about the runners I’d read about. I would think ‘if they can run for a hundred miles, I can walk up this goddamn mountain’ :) the climbing happened, it was fun to get summits, eventually I started rock climbing and that was fun too. None of this lit me up inside the way running did. I used to think that damn, I could run this mountain and get some of these summits in a day with a lighter pack. It would be the best- no camping, no heavy gear, no freezing to death, and I would enjoy this more. 

I left that group two years later and since then, the thing that fills my life with joy is to go light and fast(faster than walking at least:) 

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Our 50k was a blast, the last 10 miles hurt. My knee started acting up around mile 20 and I just slowed my pace. I started to count my steps when my mind wouldn’t stop rolling, eventually I got back into the groove of things. When we both passed 26.2 we cheered for ourselves in excitement since we’ve never even ran a marathon before. The last two miles of the race felt as long as the first 20 but knew how excited we were to almost be done. Derek met us at an aid station that we passed a few times and along with the finish line which made my whole day.

Finishing the race was the best feeling in the world and man my knee hurt. I accomplished my goal of a 31 mile race while I’m 31 years old. Within one week, Becca and I signed up for the Sun Mountain 50 miler this coming May. It was a personal accomplishment since I first got sober.  I realize now that I am capable of going farther. Capable of anything as long as I keep enjoying the journey.

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Running, Photo Journal

Ultra Training around Mount Baker

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Becca and I are training for a 50k in December. Our schedule said to run 20 miles on Saturday so we pieced together a route that did just that yesterday near Baker. I’ve done pieces of this trail before but never in good weather.  This Saturday was absolutely perfect having this sunny day on the one day out of the weeks of rain ahead.

It’s crazy that just one year ago I was recovering from an ankle injury that kept me from running for months. Last November I started a little group that would run (just one mile a day) for every single day of November. I also was signing up for 3-5 mile trail races and finding it incredibly tough. I loved them but at the same I couldn’t see past the idea of just running that distance. 

I have always found the idea of running an ultra distance impossible. Now one year later and back to back half marathons in the mountains along with a couple 20 mile races, here we are! We have to run around 20 miles every Saturday followed by 10ish every Sunday and a couple runs during the week. It’s amazing what is possible for your body and what is possible for your mind when you truly want something. I am not fast, I don’t care about being faster, but I do care about experiencing joy on a long run. At this moment in my life, 20-30 miles is a long run. The joy I get from long days in my favorite places is exactly where I want to be and what makes me the happiest.  

 

Saturday we met at 5:30am to head towards Mount Baker. We started to head up the Chain Lakes trail which was breathtaking having Mount Shuksan behind us and Mount Baker in front of us. Then we trekked over to Ptarmigan Ridge for awhile before we saw a gorgeous green lake off to the left of us so of course we had to go there. After that we headed back to Ptarmigan on our way to the Glacial Route trail. Weather moved in so we made our way back to finish the Chain Lakes loop then to the Goose trail only to find our way back at the parking lot with 17 or 18 miles.  

Even though Becca had a bad ankle roll at the end of our day we knew we had to get 20. We made tons of loops around the parking lot till we hit 20 and that is always the best feeling. It’s hard to see that you’re almost there then settle for something below your goal.  

So there is beauty I’m finishing strong. 

There is beauty is the journey:) 

Here is Becca, Hamlin and Nate heading up the Chain lakes trail

Here is Becca, Hamlin and Nate heading up the Chain lakes trail

📸: Nate Brown

📸: Nate Brown

Becca and I on a little patch of snow on the Ptarmigan Ridge trail

Becca and I on a little patch of snow on the Ptarmigan Ridge trail

Runnable spaces. 📸: Nate Brown

Runnable spaces. 📸: Nate Brown

We looked to the left and far this lake and so grateful we took a side trail to get a little close

We looked to the left and far this lake and so grateful we took a side trail to get a little close

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 📸: Nate Brown took this of me frolicking in the way back to Ptarmigan 

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📸: Nate Brown

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my favorite kind of trail

Gorgeous views of baker  

Gorgeous views of baker  

Layers  

Layers  

Becca and I taking a look at the parking lot we still needed to run to.  

Becca and I taking a look at the parking lot we still needed to run to.  

Running, Photo Journal

PhotoBlog - The Enchantments in a Day

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This is not a trip report. I am horrible at specifics. I am horrible with numbers and names of peaks or anything in between. I'm also known as the "I just show up girl" in the sense that specifics often give me anxiety and cause me to run away from things. The more information you throw at me, the more I don't want to do it anymore. If you tell me to show up with a list of what I need, without much more detail then that, I pack accordingly and just show up. If you make it complicating - I feel pukey the whole day and find a bailout plan. 

This has been my longest day where running has been added into the picture. It was 20.75 miles and we finished in 8 hours and 10 minutes with 5000 some odd feet of gain (see I hate numbers) but it sure was one of the best days ever.

When I had loosely planned the idea of running the Enchantments in Leavenworth, it was about a month before I sprained my ankle in July of last year which took me off from running till November. That was freaking brutal and I had to put off the Enchantments for yet another year. So this summer it was going to happen. I thought more people would be able to join. Time went on. More "ideas" got added into the mix like adding a couple extra peaks and such....then BAM anxiety sets in...I don't know why this happens but it does. 

Anyway I ended up declining that idea because my boyfriend was coming on this trip (and he didn't expect climbing and never is able to join me) so at the end of all of that, no one else other than Derek was able to go. I'm actually super stoked that it was just him and I. When we are together, everything is just so easy. We love to run so that's a plus, we both are super easygoing, and he's completely encouraging the whole time. We just sort of mesh so well that we never have time to fight. We have so much respect for each other that everything feels right when we're able to get these date days. Yesterday was both he and I's first time in this area so we were just smiling ear to ear the whole time. 

Here are a bunch of photos from the trip!

Have you done this thru hike/run before?

Running

When Your Biggest Fear is Running in the Mountains Alone

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Caption stolen from my Instagram on Friday:

 “Tomorrow I’m running in the only area that’s ever scared me. Might join a running group but also might do my own thing and keep it pretty chill. Janelle Mastain was with me.

We were lost on a trail far too long in one direction and looked at our map. No one else was on the trail for a mile or so and we turned around to head back to our destination. It was only a minute of two when I felt him behind me.

I freaked out in surprise and laughed because of it while i said hi to him because he literally came out of nowhere. He never said anything back.

Never looked at me. Just kept walking right behind us.

He was very intentional and not friendly.

All of a sudden her dog that loves everyone saw him and started barking like crazy at him and ran off ahead of us.

That was our sign.

We casually pretended to start running like that was our intention.

Within some time we looked back and he was running too.

We kept running and got to the destination and he was right behind us.

He sat on the ledge and was just staring at us at below his glasses.

Eventually a few mountain bikers made it to the top hooting and hollering(thank god) and the creepy guy started flinching and ran back into the trees.

I’ve always had that in my mind.

It’s changed my solo adventures.

Nothing happened yet my gut knew it was not right.

Anyway wish me luck tomorrow”

 

 

Let’s fast forward to today, it’s Monday and Hello!!! I’m still alive. That was something that happened about five and a half years ago and although nothing worse happened, it’s still in my mind. It still shows up randomly when I’m alone on a trail and I catch myself frantically looking over my shoulder. It’s sad that we humans have to watch out for each other as well as animals. I am 5’3 and an easy kill if anything ever wanted to, and my fearful pheromones probably put a big bullseye over me as well.

So Saturday I ran 13ish miles alone in the same area that that had happened. The first two miles I had mace in my hand. This might sound overboard for a lot of you but I watch way too much Forensic Files along with my previous story to enjoy myself alone in the woods. There was a time when I did enjoy it...before I was tainted with fear. Although I tell you about my fears, I never stop doing what I love but figured I’d share what honestly happens for me out there. If I’m alone, I usually choose popular areas to run. 

Anyway the first two miles started with mace in hand. Then I started seeing a lot of other runners and the mace slowly went back into my vest pocket. Slowly I started to lose the fear and just focus on one step at a time. 

My run was in Bellingham from the interurban trail -> the lost lake trail -> the rock trail -> the raptor ridge trail -> dans traverse trail -> the gravel road which takes me back to the interurban trail back to my car. It was amazing and I only fell twice, I only got bothered by horseflies once, and I brushed through stinging nettles and cursed the world. But I did it. Finishing things that scare me feels good. Trust me this is not some huge blogggable event, this is literally what I go through over and over again to get through these fears. Not a one time - accomplishment. This happens for me week by the week. 

 

Today I was supposed to do Mount Defiance with a girlfriend but she backed out while I was at work today and that’s always hard. I wish I had more girlfriends that would run with me throughout the week but I feel that most are way beyond my skill level or hikers that want to run but don’t run. 

So I’m getting ready to do a local trail loop which should suffice my training for the day and take it easy. This is a short blog for you but just a reminder that we all have fears, we all have stories that make us who we are today, but it is our choice to stop doing what we love because of fear, or to push through it anyway and feel the rewards by never giving up.

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Running

31 Miles, 31 Years of Life

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As I wrote that title, I literally said "Am I 31?" out loud alone at home on my couch just now. I mean is this what happens? You start to forget your age? I can't believe I just said that out loud and had to ask myself what my age was. I think since I've turned 30 I stopped thinking about my age. The time is also flying by so fast and I can't keep track of anything. 

Anyway what that title means is that I want to run 31 miles in a day by my next birthday coming this January. It feels so nice to sit down and write here again. With all the social media buzzing around, sometimes just writing more than a fucking paragraph feels like way too much work but I have to remember that anyone who is reading this actually wants to read about whatever it is I'm doing. If they didn't care - they wouldn't be here. If no one reads this, then that still doesn't matter as well! I think I just miss the days where i literally blogged twice, sometimes three times a week for 7 years. I can't believe I had that old blog forever. But like diaries, the moment I feel that an era has passed, I throw the diary away aka delete my old websites. 

I end up writing with too much detail that I look back and it feels embarrassing. 

In my last era of true blogging I wrote about running. It was 5 years ago and I was just starting to run. I recently got sober in July of 2013 and had a lot of thoughts, feelings I wasn't used to, and energy to expel. It truly changed me. In 2015 I joined a mountaineering group and stopped running as much because I was told that it would injure me for climbing. I was in a place where I just followed directions and thought ok sure, no more running. Training for climbing season was dreadful. I would spend that year carrying weight going up the same steep hikes over and over usually around North Bend. I climbed Baker and Rainier and that was great and all. Then a couple years ago I stopped training. I stopped climbing for the most part, and I started going on the fun hikes with beautiful views that I loved so much. I started becoming obsessed with packing lighter. Basically anything to get me as far away from mountaineering as possible. I started trading my hiking boots for trail runners. I got the vest, my bare essentials, and started running the flats and the downhills. 

This is still basically my life today and that's the happiest I've ever been. I remember the first couple years of sobriety was easy for me because I literally had no friends from having to cut out all the drunkies from my life....so I ran as much as I could and had nothing stopping me. I'm in a similar place today - except today I surround myself with other runners to push in the direction of my dream.

 

When I first got sober I read the book called Eat & Run by Scott Jurek and it was the sole reason for buying a pair of running shoes. When I used to climb, I would think about ultra runners stories and I would tell myself "Tiare people can run 100 miles in a day....you can walk up this mountain slowly while tied up to your friends". I could climb anything knowing that there were runners running miles that seemed absolutely impossible for me.

Some people here in Washington look at Rainier everyday and say to themselves, "Someday I'm going to climb that mountain."

For me: "Someday I am going to run an ultra."

 

That has literally always been my dream. I could always see Rainier as possible, I could see anything as possible.....but when it came to long distance running, I was backed in a corner thinking "not me. that is impossible for meeeeee,"

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So I'm 31 today and today I'm looking at this as POSSIBLE.

It makes my heart burst.

Nothing makes me more excited. I am not fast, I also don't care where I place or how long anything ever takes, but I do have passion and that is enough for me. 

This December 8th I signed up for my first 50k - the Deception Pass 50k and holy smokes I'm so excited. It will be one of the easier 50k's so that is why I chose it as my first. The area is absolutely beautiful and I will try to share my journey along the way, or you can follow me on my Instagram = @tiarevincent

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Running, Photo Journal

You Better Step into this Moment

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This morning the alarm went off nice and late at 8am and I was excited because I knew I was running with my friend Becca today. Becca is probably one of the only people that can run at my same pace and have a full blown conversation with me for the entire run. I love that. She mostly runs on the treadmill and she wasn't sure about how her miles would translate outside so we decided to do a super chill run from Olallie State Park to Rattlesnake Lake. It ended up being about 6.4 miles or so. This is my 3rd day this week getting back into my running routine. I looked at my calendar and realized that I potentially have a full marathon in Bend, Oregon on April 22nd so training starts on February 5th. 

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I also have a trail running/yoga retreat with Run Like a Girl in March so I am really trying to get back into the routine of things. Today was AMAZING. It's so nice to be able to run again without pain (for those of you who follow me on Instagram, you're probably sick of my broken record happiness for this) but its true. I am head over heels in love with my healthy body right now. It's funny how we can take our health for granted. The second I get sick, I believe it's the end of the world and I will never feel healthy again...until you feel better and forget your random mini depression.. haha. I sprained my ankle this past summer and that to was another milestone to get through.

So we ran...she felt good, I felt good, and we honestly could've kept going but we thought that was enough for today. The rain was pouring on us for half the run and usually I'm not into that at all, but today was perfect. Directly after the run I had opened Facebook and one of my favorite people (Kerry Murphy) had a status update that was one of those mind-blowing truth bombs.

She said this:

“War be onto you if you're going into another year and wasting another year with the old mentality.
Somebody’s in the hospital begging God for the opportunity that you have right now.

You better step into this moment.”

 

Ummm...how perfect is that? How often do we forget how freaking good we have it? Even if your life, at this moment is not the way you want it....remember that there are others that are praying for the opportunity you have right now. So much truth to this. You have to ask yourself if you are really taking advantage of the gift you have at this moment. Too often - i see the opposite. I see people bitching. I see people wishing their lives were better then they are. I see a lack of gratitude for the simplicity that can be achieved once expectations are at bay. Running for me has always been a huge part of my gratitude list. I have heard that the one way to get out of depression is to focus on all the things you have to be grateful for. When you focus on the things you're grateful for, it takes away from the negative thoughts of "never enough". Anyway! short little blog for today but I wanted to share Kerry's quote and a few pictures from the trail today.

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Photo Journal

Welcoming 2018 - Without Filters

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I recently stumbled across an old app where I used to write all of my blogposts for an old website that I had for about 6 years. I blogged at least once a week for 7 YEARS!!!!! I think people appreciated it a lot because I really just used it as an open journal of my life. This app had so many drafts from all of my old blog posts and I found myself reading through so many of them with a smile on my face. It inspired me showing up again on here.

It was called tiarefitness.com and then later changed to tiareexplores.com - it always felt that it either had to be a blog about working out (which I'm obsessed with so that was easy) or it was the beginning of my outdoor adventures. 

I talked about my explorations, my yoga challenges, my yoga teacher training, my alcoholism, my DUI's, jail, running, eating disorders, sobriety and then I deleted it. Just like that goodbye last 7 years. I have never been able to hold on to a real diary because once a chapter passed in my life, THE DIARY LITERALLY WOULD GET TOSSED AWAY too. It's just like clutter....it's uncomfortable just knowing that it's there. That's how my old blogposts felt after awhile...once my life had changed, it'd be "Internet Clutter".

My new goal for 2018 is to share my life with whoever wants to read about it (you bored mother-effers) and I'm not going to filter this. If you're here it's probably because you're a longtime follower or a close friend. I never spent time on my old blog "thinking" of what I should write on it. I never proofread anything and I'm horrible with grammar and I'll never try to sound poetic.

Side note from the previous blogs on this page....I am not vegan anymore. I never did it because I was trying to save all the animals in the world, I just have the most sensitive stomach ever so I was seeing if it would work for me. It doesn't at this moment - I am too lazy to make it work and I am not feeling sorry about it either. I always felt tired and I had real life daydreams about eggs. Sorry vegans! I still practice minimalism though. I moved in with my boyfriend last month and we have both been on this amazing journey or decluttering and only living with what is necessary. It has definitely been a work in progress.

 

2018 for me is about getting out of my comfort zone. What I see on the 2018 horizon is Hawaii in 10ish days, Costa Rica, a climbing trip in Cali, a marathon in Bend, a trial race in Smith Rock, and hopefully fingers crossed.....BALI. I am not sure if I will make everything work but that is not for me to overanalyze right this moment. I write this here to remind myself that these are the things I want right now. 

The Costa Rica trip is a trail running yoga retreat --I am nervous about it because I love to trail run but feel like I am slow and "not a real runner" if a lot of you ever feel that way...you get me. The thought of trail running with a bunch of stranger that may be crazy ultra runners makes my hair stand tall but I'm trying to push through that discomfort. I hate change....so I'm trying to welcome it.

I would like to do something this year that brings more people together...I am not sure how I'm going to make this work or if it will be mountains-related or maybe yoga-related. I am constantly spinning with new ideas but sometimes doing so makes me drop all the current spinning ideas which literally gets me nowhere. So this is on pause for now. Another thing I am doing is hopefully setting up more opportunities to create or take photos of people. It gets me down when living in Seattle means living in a constant downpour...but I'd like to make somethings happen soon. 

Anyway there is your update, internet land.