Hello and happy Halloween! I’m still washing mud out of our shoes, clothes, hair and places it shouldn’t be from this mornings Merrell Down & Dirty 5k. And it was totally worth it! But more on that later. Friday night we ventured out to see a movie, Jackass 3D. I know, real mature adults, right? :-P But it was a raunchy non-stop laugh-fest that had tears streaming down my face from laughing so hard by the end of the movie. I also apprecieted the excessive male nudity for a change, that’s a rare thing today! The finale scene with Stevo-O in the outhouse was worth it alone. But I do have a minor fear of outhouses now since stuff blowing up in them seemed to be a reoccurring gag in the movie. Anyway, if you’re into the occasional raunchy movie, this one is totally worth it. Just don’t take the kids!
Yesterday we stopped by Folsom Lake to pick up our race packets and the weather was awful – cold, rainy and windy. I had a sweater and a fleece jacket on and was still cold.
I wasn’t feeling very good about the race if the weather was going to be like this! But I also reminded myself that if I could survive this, I could survive anything! Running in the rain will be a cake walk this winter! After we headed to Whole Foods to stock up for the week where we stumbled on this!
My dream car – the plug-edition of the Toyota Prius. Toyota had a whole booth and test drive station set up at Whole Foods for the Prius and Highlander Hybrid. And because the weather was crap, there was no line to sign up for a test drive. When I bought my current Toyota nearly 10 years ago, I seriously considered buying the generation Prius out then. But gas was cheap, the mileage was only slightly better than my current car and I just couldn’t justify paying $8k more. However, the Prius has evolved a lot since then and gets considerably better mileage. We’ve been meaning to stop by the dealership to check one out, but not being ready to buy yet, didn’t want to deal with the pressure. So this was great to be able to drive one without a salesperson all over us – which I guess was the point. :-P Anyway, hubby and I took turns with the Toyota rep riding shotgun.
I loved the wild digital display and wished more cars in the US had displays like, seems so more efficient and less cluttered than traditional gauges. Shifting took a little getting used because it’s not like a typical automatic transmission at all. It has a little joystick that controls the gears and gear locations similar to an overseas stick-shift car with reverse at the top-left instead of the bottom-right. Odd. Also park is button you just push after you come to a stop, it’s not in the gear shifter. I could easily get used to how quiet the engine and cabin are, it almost felt like the car wasn’t running until we actually started moving.
Once we completed the test, we just had to fill out a 2-minute survey on the car and each scored $10 gift cards to Whole Foods for doing so. Test drive my dream car and get paid – sweeeet! Knowing we were getting $20 off the Whole Foods bill, I didn’t mind splurging on a Halloween treat for us.
Yum! I’ve had this one before, but the rich, dark chocolate flavor is addicting and I love that it’s not overly sweet.
For dinner, I went with a cooked vegan favorite after freezing in wind and rain most of the day – sauteed spaghetti squash with fresh marinara, pressed tofu cubes and chopped zucchini.
What can I say, it’s a comfort recipe for me that I can throw together in about 20 minutes.
This morning we left the house and an unholy early hour to get to Folsom Lake by 7:30 AM for the mud run. The race was completely booked, so parking was already crammed and we got to park a few lots away from the actual race. But that’s okay when we were treated to a beautiful sunrise for the walk in.
The mud run was a wild experience for us because it was a crash course in trail running with lots of hills and military-style obstacles including two mud pits and a long jaunt through the freezing cold lake waters in full running gear. I was torn on what to wear, I knew it would be cold, but I didn’t to be weighed down with layers to absorb water and mud. I picked a pair of old running running capri pants, one of my ratty old sports bras and a cheap sport hoodie I plucked from Target clearance. As well as my old running shoes that were ready for retirement after a half marathon earlier this month.
Turns out a majority of the trail was on a path we mountain bike a lot and it’s packed with hills and challenging terrain sprinkled with obstacles like wall jumps, rope climbs and of course mud pits. For a 5k, it felt a lot longer! I actually handled the hills better than I thought I would only walking a few times. It was after the first mud pit and having to dash across a huge sandy beach did things start to get to me. My mud soaked clothes and shoes felt like they weighed 60 lbs. Then we had to do a large loop wadding through the lake, which was freezing, and climb a sloped wall using a rope with drenched clothes. Then it was the finale – the mother of mud pits that we were required to do a military stomach crawl through. The mud was freezing and my elbows and legs kept sinking in it. We were pretty gummed up with mud finally crossing when we finally crossed the finish line.
Thankfully the weather was much better today, the sun was out and it was warmed up nicely – a huge relief. And yup, think it’s time to retire these shoes now!
The mud even penetrated through them and we were both a mess for the strip down back at our car.
Still it was an awesome experience and I feel that I could survive running in any condition now! And many were actually doing it in costumes! I think a mud soaked tutu would be too much for me. For a fully booked event, things ran surprisingly well. There were tons of outhouses, more than at the half-marathon, we didn’t have to wait at all. The bag-check service was fast and handy and there were huge outdoor hosing stations with changing rooms for those that wanted a cold, outdoor shower. We skipped that option deciding to drive home sitting on towels and wait for our nice and warm shower. This was the first year the event was held in Sacramento and it’s coming back next year because it was such a hit and we’re definitely planning to run it again. Check out the Merrell Down & Dirty site if you’re interested in catching one.