Today's Mighty Oak


Well, O24 got cancelled (which was the right choice). I’ll have another post about what I’m doing next, but I still have a virtual 50K to run at the end of the month, so I’m sticking to this plan for a few more weeks.

Back to the Westmoreland Heritage Trail for my long runs. Getting out early enough to beat the heat (And Ozone Action Days) worked, as this was also Mysterium weekend! I’ve never been able to go, so it was great to attend virtually, getting back in time after my weekend runs to see all the panels and join the Discord! I also reconnected with some friends from the community, and watching so much about URU brought back some really amazing memories!

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 6 miles. Tiny loops after yoga.
  • Wednesday: 10 miles. More tiny loops.
  • Thursday: 8 miles. Even more tiny loops.
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: 22 miles.
  • Sunday: 10 miles.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Gatorade, Gu, Bobo’s bar.
  • BWF/Core work: Week 3 of yoga in the park! Really enjoyed it, it was lower body focused, so felt really great!
  • Stretching: Slowly getting back into it (with thanks to Netflix, although I need a new show to watch while I stretch, preferable a half hour comedy)
  • Virtual Races coming up: Pink Lightning 50K, Mario Lemieux 6.6K, New Holland Lightpoint 5K, The Great Race 10K


Alright, let’s see what have today. First up, in cool space news, we have a new atlas of the Solar System!

NASA has also released a stunning photo of Saturn in its summer.

In other exploration news, NOAA is sending divers down a blue hole off the shore of Florida!

A video showing the evolution of the world’s tallest buildings:

Has your mail been slower lately? It’s not your imagination, the new Postmaster General admitted he’s slowing it down. It’s all an effort to discredit voting by mail, BTW.

Don’t come at me with any ‘both-side-ism’ because they are far from each other. The North Dakota GOP had to disavow it’s own platform because they admit that no, gay people don’t ‘infect society.’ Monsters.

In other state political news, Washington State is suing the federal government because they are trying to take away queer rights in regards to healthcare. So yes, things are in fact much worse now.

Back to federal again, Biden vows to allow the military to display pride flags again. With their new ban on Confederate flags (you know, the traitors that killed members of our military), it also banned pride flags (you know, currently serving members of our military).

And in what should cause you endless rage, the administration initially decided they didn’t need to do anything about the global pandemic because it was only affecting ‘blue’ states. Not only are they dumb as fucking bricks, they are monsters willing to literally sacrifice American lives for their own gain.

And some local bad news, protesters at a Pro Police Rally decided to chant about killing queer people. Because no where is actually really safe, sadly.

Okay, some good news. AOC delivered an amazing rebuttal to the lawmaker who insulted her and gave a fake apology. Worth a watch!

And surprise, surprise, the antifa movement has caused zero murders in 25 years.

Okay, pallet cleanser: check out this music video from The Mandalorian:

XKCD examines the habitable campfire zone.

Johnny Walker is coming out with a sustainable, paper based bottle! How cool is that!

A reminder, when we talk about toxic masculinity, not only is it bad for everyone around us, but it’s also bad for men. When we talk about defeating toxic masculinity, it’s also good for the men as well! A new study shows that those more disposed towards those toxic traits are more likely to be depressed themselves.

Okay, and finally, The Muppets take on Hamilton Act One and Act Two!

That’s it for now, have a great one!



The humidity was high, but at least it felt like we had a break in the temperature, so that helped. I also finished up three different virtual challenges this week!

Was nice having a down/recovery week after the 50K the week before, still have another 50K (or potential 50miler) on the horizon for the end of the month as the fundraiser for Pink Lightning.

O24 is still working with Cleveland Metroparks, we’ll see what happens. Right now, all events in Metroparks are cancelled through September, and the race is the first weekend of October. I’m not confident I’d feel safe and not sure what all the race would be able to provide, but waiting for official word either way is harrowing, I’d just like to make a decision!

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 5 miles. First of my four virtual legs of the GAP: Leg 1, Southside to Homestead
  • Wednesday: 9 miles. Finished Runnsylvania 283 and GAP: Leg 14, Ohiopyle to Ramcat
  • Thursday: 7 miles. GAP: Leg 22, Frostburg to Woodcock Hollow
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: 9 miles.
  • Sunday: 15 miles. Finished GVRAT 1000K and GAP: Leg 12, Connellsville to Brunner’s Run

    I headed down to the GAP to do my last run on it (we had teammates across the country doing this, so it was neat to do one run on the actual trail). It’s been a while since I’ve run on it and there’s a lot m ore benches and picnic tables now, as well as a lot of erosion control put in place. But otherwise, it’s the same: a decent trail where the cyclists are really rude to runners (at least, just in the city part, along other parts, it’s always been fine), but a good, and soupy run.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Gatorade, Gu, Bobo’s bar.
  • BWF/Core work: Week 2 of yoga in the park!
  • Stretching: Slowly getting back into it (with thanks to Netflix, although I need a new show to watch while I stretch, preferable a half hour comedy)
  • Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee 1000K progress (1021K): 647/634 miles – DONE!
  • Runnsylvania 283 progress: 291/283 miles – DONE!
  • GAP Virtual Trail Relay progress: 4/4 segments – DONE!


The heat continued to be horrible this week, getting up early and running late worked, but after tomorrow at least, it’s supposed to break a bit.

This was also the first week of (a five or six week) outdoor yoga class I had signed up for in February. There’s about 15 of us in the class, all spread out and it was the perfect yoga for me. Bit of flow, but mostly stretching. I think I’m learning that ‘beginner’ yoga is really what I like (although I still want to try Yin). We did some balance work, which I was happy I had not lost a lot of skill in after having not done any in so long, and the instructor is very nice. I’m one of two new people to the class, everyone else seems to carry over each time which is both intimidating and speaks well of the instructor!

This is also the week of training after which I stopped my training for Eagle Up. I finished this week, took a week off then dove back into my modified program at week 1 to get me here. I’m feeling less and less confident about O24 each week (both in it happening, or if it does, my comfort attending), so we’ll see. I hope there is a deferral option, but I understand if there isn’t. The training is also wearing on me a bit. I still have one more virtual 50K next month, and finishing up my virtual runs across Tennessee and Pennsylvania, but then I’m looking forward to a break.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 6 miles.
  • Wednesday: 8 miles.
  • Thursday: 4 miles.
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: 31 miles. Hit the trail super early after bad night’s sleep, and by the end, was roasting. Ran with Steve and Liz for my middle loop (and a bit of the third) and the company was amazing, I forgot how much better I run with friends. The last loop especially was tough in the sun-exposed areas, and I tended to walk those, but I finished really strong despite the bad conditions.

    I also grabbed the Strava title of “Local Legend” for one of the segments. Had to look up what that meant, but it means I’ve run that segment more than anyone else in the past 30 days, so that was pretty cool! Arbitrary (and a weird segment in terms of where it starts/ends), but still cool nonetheless!

    I have in my head a goal of a sub 6 hour 50K, not an impressive goal, but since I’ve never raced a 50K (just ran them as virutals/training runs), it’s been on my mind. Ran today’s miles in 6:09:XX, so I think with the right weather and a bit more focus, it’s totally doable!

    I wasn’t as hungry as I thought I would be after (although Sunday was a different story), and I’m only a bit sore. My one knee was bugging me at the end, and my Achilles’ didn’t give me problems like I thought they would!

    I went to the Carrie Furnace drive in cinema that night, and walking around the mini-tour, as well as getting concessions from the food trucks on the ground helped to keep my legs stretched a bit, so that was good, and a very enjoyable way to spend the evening!

    I also forgot, but was reminded of, what it’s like to sleep after an ultra distance. Bodies and legs do weird things.
  • Sunday: Rest.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Gatorade, Gu, Bobo’s bar.
  • BWF/Core work: I’m going to count yoga in this category!
  • Stretching: Slowly getting back into it (with thanks to Netflix)
  • Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee 1000K progress (1021K): 602/634 miles. Still going, still motivated to run in the heat due to this, so it’s doing its job!
  • Runnsylvania 283 progress: 277/283 miles.


The heat was horrible this week, and it’s just continuing, sadly. I skipped my speedwork this week, it’s too hot and I had so much trouble just getting the miles in.

Part of the reason I signed up for the GVRAT was to make sure I was doing my miles over the summer, usually I don’t do much running in the heat. However, I’ve found I have to be real careful about when I run and really pay attention to my hydration. I messed up a bit, but hopefully I’m doing better now.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 10 miles.
  • Wednesday: 5 miles. Planned to do more, but the heat just zapped me.
  • Thursday: 5 miles. Planned to do more, but again, the heat just destroyed me.
  • Friday: 9 miles. Had the ‘crazy’ idea to carry some Gatorade with me as I ran, which was a huge game changer. Not sure why it took me this long to think of that, but because it’s shorter runs close to home, it just never crossed my mind, but with this heat, it’s essential.
  • Saturday: 9 miles. Early morning miles to beat the heat, this became another Ozone Action Day.
  • Sunday: 15 miles. Again, up super early to try to beat the heat. I’m amazed by how humid it is, and how dry all the creeks are, there are a couple that just aren’t there anymore. Ran into a friend and teammate while I was between ‘loops’ at my car, so we got a socially distanced photo together!
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Gatorade, Gu, Bobo’s bar.
  • BWF/Core work: Nothing this week, heat zapped me, I’ll try some more Zombies Run, The Home Front this week, and my yoga in the park class starts this week!
  • Stretching: Slowly getting back into it (with thanks to Netflix)
  • Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee 1000K progress (1021K): 553/634 miles. Still going, still motivated to run in the heat due to this, so it’s doing its job!
  • Runnsylvania 283 progress: 228/283 miles.


The heat stuck around this week, without GVRAT and the hope of O24, I wouldn’t be running at all.

I keep wavering back and forth as to whether or not O24 will take place. I’m hopeful, but also have no idea what the state of the world will be in and if I’ll be comfortable going to it. If it does take place, and I go, I’ll be talking with my boss about working from home for two weeks after, just out of an over-abundance of caution for others.

But who knows what I’ll be comfortable with and what will actually happen.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 8 miles. Tiny neighborhood loops with a friend!
  • Wednesday: 7 miles.
  • Thursday: Rest day. Ozone action day, so I decided to take it off and stay inside, better to be safe than sorry!
  • Friday: 10 miles. Speedwork: tempo: 18min/4R/12min. My last tempo run of this cycle!
  • Saturday: 3 miles. 5th annual Pittsburgh Frontrunners back of the pack Fourth of July run and brunch (observed), this year celebrating Bastille Day.

    So years ago, the Frontrunners cancelled their Fourth of July run because it fell on a Saturday, and the group of us in the back decided to run together anyway, and we did a potluck brunch. We’ve continued this tradition, although this year we did a socially-distanced run and only met outside (spread out at three picnic tables) due to the pandemic. It was a bit bittersweet on top of the pandemic, as two of the group will be moving, but as always, a wonderful time.
  • Sunday: 16 miles. Actually ran over 17, miscalculated my route a bit. Still a good run, although was much more humid than I expected, and got sunny by the end.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Gatorade, Gu, Bobo’s bar.
  • BWF/Core work: Nothing this week, heat zapped me, I’ll try some more Zombies Run, The Home Front this week, and my yoga in the park class starts next week!
  • Stretching: Slowly getting back into it (with thanks to Netflix)
  • Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee 1000K progress (1021K): 500/634 miles. Still going, still motivated to run in the heat due to this, so it’s doing its job!
  • Runnsylvania 283 progress: 175/283 miles.


Alright, let’s see what we have today. First up, the crew of Queer Eye makes over my favorite sports mascot, Gritty!

A thing which I did not exists, is the Boston Typewriter Orchestra. And they’ve done an at-home concert!

Also in musical news, a saxophonist accompanies himself!

Sam Smith has an amazing cover of Coldplay’s, “Fix You:”

In uplifting news, John Boyega (Star Wars) delivers a great speech at a BLM protest!

We’ve had some good SCOTUS rulings lately (And some bad ones), but buried detail in the earth-shattering workplace discrimination ruling is the Trojan Horse that we’ll be seeing next: religious liberty laws. This fight is far from over, but for now, we can celebrate the bit of ground we gained.

And speaking of queer rights, the fascist in the White House used the anniversary of the Pulse massacre to remove healthcare rights for trans people.

Ending on something fun, The Hamilton Polka!



The heat came in this week, and there’s no sign of it breaking. So all my running has been late in the evening or early in the morning. Thank goodness for things like the GVRAT and the hope of O24, otherwise, I wouldn’t be running at all.

I did also take time on Sunday to finally buy a membership to the trail I do a lot of my miles on. I’m happy to support it and with the pandemic, it’s getting a lot more use (and there have been two fallen trees in the last week, just on the sections I frequent). Hopefully I can also get out sometime to help with cleanups and whatnot, but happy to start supporting something that’s been so awesome!

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 10 miles. Virtual Race for Pride, put on my a race management company that does a lot of awesome races here and in Cleveland. I will give them props too, I e-mailed them about this asking if they were going to be making a donation to a queer cause, and they actually decided to do that!
  • Wednesday: 8 miles. Speedwork: tempo: 18min/4R/12min.
  • Thursday: 5 miles.
  • Friday: 10 miles.
  • Saturday: Rest. Spent a good portion of the day in a pool, which was very nice!
  • Sunday: 22 miles. Got up as early as I could (after trying to sleep through the fireworks that everyone seemed to have purchased) and knocked this out on the trail. First half wasn’t too bad, although the humidity was awful. As soon as the sun came out, because it’s so cloudless, I was just baking. Got it done though, and faster than I thought I would.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Skratch, Gu, Bobo’s bar.
  • BWF/Core work: Nothing this week, heat zapped me, I’ll try some more Zombies Run, The Home Front this week.
  • Stretching: Slowly getting back into it (with thanks to Netflix)
  • Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee 1000K progress (1021K): 456/634 miles. Still going, still motivated to run in the heat due to this, so it’s doing its job!
  • Runnsylvania 283 progress: 131/283 miles.


Was nice to have somewhat of a down week. The humidity was ratcheted up, and this upcoming week is looking to be steamy again. I hate summer running. With COVID number spiking again, it’s in the back of my mind that my race may be cancelled, or I may not feel comfortable attending it. It’s sad to think about, and the loss of normalcy and events is really starting to get to me.

A friend recently posted some similar thoughts, or at least something close enough to it that it resonated a lot with me. This is only a moment in time, but it’s still a very stressful and scary time, and that’s not abating, even as we reckon with even larger societal problems.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 8 miles. Neighborhood loops and a new stray cat that likes to hang out near my house!
  • Wednesday: 7 miles. Moved my speedwork to this day to account for weather: Tempo: 18min/4R/12min.
  • Thursday: 5 miles.
  • Friday: 9 miles.
  • Saturday: 15 miles. Got up early to run before my Dentist appointment. Was the most humid I’ve run in in a long time, and that’s saying something. Absolute soup. Also, a tree down and across the trail, so had to adjust a bit on the fly.
  • Sunday: Rest. Spent the morning volunteering with Gay4Good cleaning up Allegheny Commons Park.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Bobo’s bar.
  • BWF/Core work: Did one of the Zombies, Run’s The Home Front bodyweight workouts and really enjoyed it. It’s also something different than my normal workout, so it was nice to change it up.
  • Stretching: Slowly getting back into it (with thanks to Netflix)
  • Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee 1000K progress (1021K): 401/634 miles. Still going, still motivated to run in the heat due to this, so it’s doing its job!
  • Runnsylvania 283 progress: 76/283 miles.


The last of three big weekends, so it’s nice to get past this and get these miles on the books. I dealt okay with the heat, which honestly, is a big improvement for me! I still don’t feel entirely comfortable going to a gym (and in my case, finding a new gym), so I’m forced to run outside, which in the long run is a good thing, but I hate the heat, humidity dust and sun.

  • Monday: Rest.
  • Tuesday: 10 miles. Neighborhood loops
  • Wednesday: 6 miles. Moved my speedwork to this day: Tempo: 18min/4R/12min.
  • Thursday: 7 miles. Yet more loops.
  • Friday: Rest.
  • Saturday: 10 miles.
  • Sunday: 22 miles. Got up super early to get this in before it got unbearably hot. Still had a lot of dust and sun to deal with, but very proud of myself for knocking this out.
  • Long run fuel: Tailwind, Skratch, Bobo’s bar, Gu.
  • BWF/Core work: No workouts this week.
  • Stretching: Slowly getting back into it (with thanks to Netflix)
  • Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee 1000K progress (1021K): 357/634 miles. Over halfway! I also passed the other Crane! I’m heading into a down week, so he might leapfrog me, but I’m super excited to have made up this distance in my fake rivalry!

    I also used this run for two virtual 5Ks, Stride for Pride (so my Strava route turned rainbow colors) and the Saint Vincent College Student Emergency Fund 5K.
  • Runnsylvania 283 progress: 32/283 miles. Started June 20, so only weekend miles counted this week.

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