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Holiday Cross Training

Somehow, between my self-proclaimed month of rest and coming down with some sort of sickness after visiting my family for Thanksgiving, 9 full days passed without me running one single step.

Christmas Wreaths

The crazy thing about this – I hardly even noticed.

It’s funny how when you’re injured, or tapering, or resting for any other reason than “I just don’t feel like running” those days until you can run again seem to drag by. I feel every single non-running day pass, counting them down in hopes that I would be that much closer to lacing up my shoes again and hitting the pavement.

But when I just don’t want to run, the non-running days add up without me even noticing. For those 9 days, I didn’t even miss running. Not in the slightest.

Plus, not running gave me plenty of time to focus on other cross training activities.

On Saturday, I got in some good “strength training” in the form of chopping down and carrying our first official Christmas tree.

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In past years, Evan and I have gone out to get a little tree for my apartment. Even though both of us spent the holiday with our families, it was nice to have a little bit of festivity for those weeks leading up to it. This year we will be heading to PA to celebrate Christmas, but it’s our first year in a house. Our first official tree together. So the choosing of that tree is something we obviously took very seriously.

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I just need to pause and say that we tried this Christmas tree farm on a whim (having never had a Christmas here in VT and not really knowing the best spots in the area) and I was blown away from the second we got out of the car. Big red barn, petting zoo, a warm fire, free hot cocoa, Santa for the kids, and wagon rides out into the seemingly endless fields surrounded by mountains.

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And to top it all off – it was snowing. We couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day.

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After some precise measuring to make sure that the large tree we selected would actually fit in our living room, we got to work chopping it down.

christmas tree measuring

Hours later, the tree was set up, and our house started looking just a little more festive. Have I mentioned that I love this time of year so much??

christmas tree…only slightly lopsided…

Then on Sunday, I got a great full body workout on the slopes.


I would be lying if I said that I wasn’t more than a little nervous about how we would survive our first Vermont winter. I’ve lived in New England for most of my adult life, but have spent most of my time in areas close enough to the ocean that we never got truly pelted by snow. This will be my first in a noncoastal New England state. So Evan and I decided that if we were going to be here for endless months of cold and snow, we might as well make the most of it.

Despite the fact that neither of us has skied in at least 4 – 5 years, we bought each other season passes (Stratton has an amazing deal for people under 30 if anyone is interested). Sunday was the first time in our entire relationship that Evan and I skied together. It was warm, the little snow that was on the mountain was slushy, and by mid-afternoon it had started raining.

But we had a blast. Somewhere along the line, I had kind of forgotten how fun skiing was. By the end of the day, my whole body hurt. I could barely walk. And I had decided that I was officially trading in my running shoes this winter for a pair of skis. Forget running through the snow and cold. I would be spending the rest of the winter perfecting my new sport.

This proclamation lasted precisely 24 hours. Because yesterday, a package showed up. And all thoughts about quitting running for the rest of the winter went out the window as soon as I saw what was inside:

Saucony Kinvara TR and Mirage 3

The Saucony Kinvara TR (a pair of trail shoes I’ve been coveting for awhile now) AND the brand new, not yet released Mirage 3. I have professed my love for the Mirage 2 many times on this blog and I’m pretty sure this next version is going to win my heart just as quickly….even if they aren’t green. They look very different from their predecessor, and I’m excited to see how these changes feel on the run.

Speaking of which…I need to get running. My days on the couch have officially ended.

Full review to come!

23 Responses to Holiday Cross Training

  1. I used to go skiing all the time when I loved in NH. My college even had its own ski slope. So fun! I <3 this season too!
    Celia´s last post ..hamilton marathon 2012

  2. Holy cow that mountain looks amazing! Do you accept visitors? We love to snowboard, but lately the weather has been too warm that we can only go once or twice a year!

    Enjoy the shoes!

  3. I’m always so happy to get my “Vermont fix” via your posts! It’s been two years since I left but it continues to hold a very special place in my heart. And I’m jealous of your snow!!! We got some in October that’s stuck but it hasn’t snowed since!
    Jean´s last post ..Filler Tuesday

    • We don’t have snow anymore, either. It snowed on Saturday and then it got warm and melted. It’s been in the high 40s all week and looks like it’ll stay warm for awhile – like a cruel joke!

  4. Completely jealous of your new shoes! Love my sauconys and I would love to have both of those shoes.
    Jamie @ couchtoironwoman´s last post ..The Half Marathon Saga

  5. LOVE skiing! Such a great way to get outside and enjoy mother nature and get your sweat on :) Those shoes are pretty fierce though, enjoy taking those bad boys on a spin on the snowy VT roads!

  6. Love the new shoes! The ski slopes in NH are just starting to open and I can’t wait to get out on the there!! I can barely do PA bunny slopes though… so hopefully I don’t hurt myself in the process…. o no haha

  7. World’s most perfect trip to the tree farm! What a gorgeous day! I think you’ll like Stratton, they’ve got some really nice wide open cruisers that are perfect for making big turns. Not to mention the waffle hut smells amazing all the time

    • Ugh that waffle hut – the smell is irresistible!! haha I don’t know how it seems to take over the entire mountain, but it’s like a magnet…drawing you in.

  8. This post made me so nostalgic for Vermont! That Christmas tree farm in the snow looks so magical. My dad grew up in Brattleboro and we used to visit my grandparents there several times a year until they passed away, about 6 years ago. I actually tried to look up Sugar-on-Snow festivals close to NYC and unsurprisingly came up with nothing. That was my favorite VT holiday tradition!
    Gabby @ Marathons and Macarons´s last post ..Jingle Bell 5K Run for Arthritis Race Report

    • Sugar-on-Snow festivals?? This is something I know nothing about (as a Vermont newbie), but I’m going to look into! Sounds awesome. Was there one near Brattleboro that you used to attend?

  9. Your tree looks so nice all decorated! We use that very scientific method of measuring for a tree too.

    I’ve been eyeing the Mirage 2s. I might have to wait to read your review of the 3s though!
    Steph @ Steph Runs On´s last post ..Color Me Rad 5K Recap

    • I’ve only run a few miles in the 3s so far but I really liked them! They feel pretty different from the 2s. One big change that I noticed is that they fit closer to your foot. My foot felt really snug in the shoe, but not in a bad way…the new shape holds your foot in pretty well and I loved the feel. I’ll wait until I’ve run more in them to post the review, but so far so good!

  10. Your tree buying looks so much fun! I’m not feeling at all Christmassy – we’re in Tokyo until 16th Dec and I’m completely missing out on the Christmas experience at the moment (not that I’m complaining at all). But all these tree photos make me feel a little sad! And the skiing is fantastic, it’s so much fun…unless you break a leg :)
    Cathryn´s last post ..Graveyards, dodgy masks and decomposing bodies

  11. Awesome that you went skiing! I love the snow/cold weather on the mountains or on Christmas…not so much for half the year. Some of the mountains have deals for Vermont residents – I know Jay Peak does. There’s also a ski & ride pin that you can buy for like $3 that offers 50% off deals on different mountains every Tuesday. Snowboarding is definitely my favorite cross-training exercise in the winter!

    • Thanks for the tips! Jay Peak is a bit of a drive for us, but it’s one we definitely want to visit at least once this winter. I’m going to look for that pin as well. Seems like an awesome deal.

  12. I love your Vermont life. So, cool!
    Meggie´s last post ..Sisters In Sport: Check In Numero Dos and Revised Goals

  13. yall might be the cutest couple ever. not to mention, that tree farm is seriously the epitome of christmas. :)
    elizabeth´s last post ..Missy Zippy asked, I answered!

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