Weekly Review - 7 Feb 2016

(The above picture was taken on 7 Feb 2016, from the Saratoga Lake Boat Launch. We're all suffering from cabin fever, to varying degrees, and I thought perhaps a quick side trip to something completely different might be better than listening to the kids bicker for the hour or two before dinner, while I tried to get caught up on the housework. I had last been there a few months earlier, waiting for our runner to come in with my Ragnar team. As far as I can remember, the kids had ever been there.)

Monday: Digestive tract was in horrid shape after last week, still causing significant pain.

Tuesday: Bad in the morning (possibly from sunflower seeds). Better as the day progressed. Feeling almost human again by lunch.

The Sun felt good today. Concentration was decent.

Ran on the track at the Y. Still had trouble keeping my heart in the target zone. I don't seem to have this problem when running outside. Ate mostly fat afterwards, based on a suggestion from the Primal Endurance podcast that doing so should help speed the transition to better fat burning.

Wednesday: Low carb "flu" kicking in. Again. Low energy and depression. Weather isn't helping. Raining hard all day. Wish it was snow.

Listening to The Chemical Wedding by Bruce Dickinson.

Missing the Adirondacks.

Friday: Felt pretty bad for most of the day. It seemed to be caused by chocolate.

Saturday: I still wasn't feeling great, so I decided to forgo a run in lieu of a hike, which turned out to be a good decision. It was followed immediately by a bad decision: 10 minutes into my ride to the trail, I realized that I had forgotten to bring traction control. I decided to not spend the 20 minutes it would take to go get my spikes or YakTrax. This ended up being a mistake, as the trails were iced over from edge to edge in many spots. I managed to get through the whole hike without slipping and falling, though, somehow.

For this week's adventure, I decided to check out the other Saratoga Sand Plains. There's a parcel of state land off of Route 50 called the Saratoga Sand Plains, and that's one of the best places around to see the two annual hatchings of Karner Blue butterflies. This land sits adjacent to Camp Saratoga, a.k.a. the Wilton Wildlife Preserve and Park, where I spent a good deal of time as a child, and where I continue to spend a good deal of time as an adult. On the other side of Camp Saratoga, along Scout Road, there's a small parking lot that's also labeled as the Saratoga Sand Plains, probably for administrative reasons. This parcel appears to be all woods, though, and is probably used more by hunters than by hikers or butterfly watchers. (If you are a butterfly watcher, there's another fantastic field in Camp Saratoga. It used to just be open sand, with scraps of vegetation here and there, and we scouts used it during summer camp for classes. Today, it has been returned to open field through the efforts of the Wilton Wildlife Preserve and Park, and it is glorious.)

I followed an old woods road for perhaps 20 feet before a gigantic bit of blowdown had me wandering around looking for the trail. Well, trails, as both of the tire tracks had become single track trail at this point. After poking around a bit, finding a trail camera, but no trail to speak of, I backtracked, and realized that the road must continue on past the dead tree, more or less in a straight line. My guess was correct, and I followed that woods road all the way over to its junction with one of the many still open woods roads in Camp Saratoga. (It dropped me off on one of the connectors to the Opdahl Farm.) It didn't take long for me to get my bearing and start heading off on trails that I knew. I poked around for a bit, and then made my way back to the car.

Afterwards I got a haircut, and then in the evening we all had dinner with some friends who were visiting from out of town.

Sunday: Made pancakes, or rather, failcakes. I tweaked way too many variables at once and ended up with something that was barely edible hot off the gridle, and completely inedible after it had cooled. Ouch.

In the afternoon, the girls and I went for a walk with my mom and stepdad along the Zim Smith, and along some of the nearby village roads. The Zim Smith is completely dry and clear of ice, but the surrounding land is sodden from the rain on Wednesday. We stopped at a park for a few minutes along the way, and my mom pointed out some of the local geology to the girls, mostly in the form of ice weeps coming out of the shale.

On the way home I took the girls to the Saratoga Lake Boat Launch, for something different to look at. It was nice to stand in soft dirt for a little while, and the ice was varied and interesting to look at, but it was far too thin to walk out on. The girls had fun exploring, but we had to keep it short, because it was already late in the day and there wasn't much shelter from the wind.

I'm feeling human, now, toward the end of the day. I made sure to up my carb intake at dinnertime, which seemed to help, and I also had something like seven 8oz cups of coffee today, which is way more than usual. (I don't feel like I had that much caffeine, though.) I think I'm so nervous about triggering intestinal issues again that I'm keeping my carb intake way too low. I'll have to pay closer attention to it going forward.

Be excellent to each other!