Yoga and a long beautiful walk through the Botanical Gardens…

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Saturday the hubby and I had a morning yoga session at the Norfolk Botanical Gardens. The gardens host quite a few different community projects as well as certificate programs in Floral Design. It was a gorgeous cool spring day and a perfect way to spend Saturday morning together! The class was very beginner friendly and the instructor, Charlotte was amazing! She also teaches Yin Yoga at the The Space Above Yoga Center

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After yoga, we received free admission with the cost of the yoga class. What a beautiful way to spend a Saturday morning, yoga to restore surrounded with nature’s beauty. It was a magical day! 

 

It was peaceful and kind of meditative at times. Even though we’ve live in this area nearly 9 years, my hubby’s never been to the Botanical Gardens before. So this made the day extra special.

 

 

I’ve been to the Gardens with visiting friends during the height of tourist season and it was beautiful. But it was hot and can get crowded. I’ve always recommended people travel here during off season. No lines, hotels are less expensive, and events are less crowded. So plan two trips to the area. One for relaxing and one to take in all the tourist vibe events! 

 

So now come take a walk with us as we explore the

Norfolk Botanical Gardens

 

“There is unspeakable beauty and potential to be found in nature. It entices me and is an invitation I just have to accept.”  ~Jil Ashton-Leigh 

 

 

“A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”
~Albert Einstein

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“It is no longer sufficient to describe the world of nature. The point is to defend it.” ~Edward Abbey

“There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
I love not man the less, but Nature more”
~George Gordon Byron

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“Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

“‘Is the spring coming?’ he said. ‘What is it like?’ …

‘It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine, and things pushing up and working under the earth.'”

~Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

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“Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. … There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature — the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter.”

~Rachel Carson, Silent Spring

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“Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.”

~John Muir, Our National Parks

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“I felt like lying down by the side of the trail and remembering it all. The woods do that to you, they always look familiar, long lost, like the face of a long-dead relative, like an old dream, like a piece of forgotten song drifting across the water, most of all like golden eternities of past childhood or past manhood and all the living and the dying and the heartbreak that went on a million years ago and the clouds as they pass overhead seem to testify (by their own lonesome familiarity) to this feeling.”

~Jack Kerouac, The Dharma Bums

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“An early morning walk is a blessing for the whole day.”  

~Henry David Thoreau

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“Whoever loves and understands a garden will find contentment within.”

~Chinese proverb

 

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As we walked through the Enchanted Forest, the birds became hyper aware and greeted us as we passed by! It was magical!

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“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.”

~ Lao Tzu

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Sadly it was closed, the Butterfly House is a summer event.

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But the Butterfly Garden was blooming!

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In a field of roses, she is a wildflower.

~Unknown

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“One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.” ~William Shakespeare

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“The richness I achieve comes from Nature, the source of my inspiration.”

~Claude Monet

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The Rose Garden

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“One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today.”

~Dale Carnegie

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“Take time to smell the roses.”

~Proverb

Hope you enjoyed the tour of the Norfolk Botanical Gardens. We highly recommend it for a low key, long walk kind of day filled with beauty. 

💚

Susan & Keith

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Run/Walk/Run – The Galloway Method

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Men’s Blue Healing Mandala Tech By: INKnBURN

HOW TO WALK FASTER

Here is the procedure:

  1. Usually done during the middle of a recovery “walk day” between runs or during the warm down walk on a running day.
  2. Warm up by walking very gently for at least 5 minutes – then do the following Drill.
  3. For 10-20 seconds, pick up the cadence of the walk by shortening stride.
  4. Walk gently for 30 seconds.
  5. Keep alternating segments, finding a cadence or rhythm that is quicker.
  6. Ease back on the cadence if you lose smoothness.
  7. First day, do this for ten minutes.
  8. Increase by 3-4 minutes on each successive session.
  9. Goal is to have 20-30 minutes total in this workout.
  10. Do this once or twice a week to maintain adaptations.

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Jeff Galloway Resources: 

www.jeffgalloway.com

Run/Walk/Run Timer 

Every morning should start this way!

Morning Meditation

With my messy bed head hair I decided to start the day right. Meditation and visualization! I think this card will be repeated often for me, it wasn’t difficult to summon up an event that was/is difficult to accept.  I love the way the day started. Some soul searching, warm sunny rays and yummy food! I think every one of my days will start this way. Next stop was an hour of ashtanga yoga!!!

Easy Breakfast

Half of a Rudi’s Plain English Muffin

Half Tbsp. Justin’s Almond Butter

Half a small banana

Glass of water w/lemon

 

Steampunk Tights (transformed into capris) by: INKnBURN

Visualization cards by: Unknown (given to me as a gift and there are no markings on the cards). If anyone recognizes what these are let me know!

Rise!

 

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Yoga Mat By: Gaiam – Hana Singlet By: INKnBURN
Up off my buns finally. Been in a physical rut/dead stop for quite some time. Struggles are real, depression and loss are real and not always is it easy to bounce back. I tend to shut myself off and hide from the world till I am stronger again. I think it’s because I never want anyone to see or know when I am hit hard and feeling weak and vulnerable. Shutting myself down has always been my go to fix. But it doesn’t work, it only makes things worse.
So I have a new attitude, new goals, and a new fitness schedule. It’s easy and flexible and will allow me to ease myself back into it all while still pushing my limits but giving me room to change things up. In the past I’ve tried to adhere to rigid schedules (that I made for myself) and ultimately I burned out fast. I pushed to hard in some aspects and not hard enough in others. But now I feel my head’s back in the game and hubby and I are working to be a support system instead of being negative enablers. You know how that story goes. I’d say how about stopping for a doughnut and while yeah one doughnut is fine, once in a while, us leaving with four doughnuts and neither trying to talk the other back to just one, or better yet none in NOT fine.
We’ve sadly loved each other so much we’ve allowed each other to be lazy and excuse away and let back in bad eating habits. Now we’ve acknowledged the problem and are facing it head on. We’ve turned the page and now love each other enough to say no, to give that push when needed and to be the reminder that we can do better and strive for more. We’ve moved and LOVE the place and with that have good vibes and positive energy flowing again (photo’s to come)!
So yeah, back to my schedule….
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I’m getting back to the basics and starting all over again. This will help me focus and small improvements and specific goals.
Monday – Yoga
Tuesday – Run/Walk/Run
Wednesday – Cross Train/Weights
Thursday – Run/Walk/Run
Friday – Yoga
Saturday – Long Run/Walk/Run
Sunday – Rest/Stretch
When we moved we moved near two amazing things,  a park and a yoga/meditation/reiki studio! We also live near a gym and the YMCA (looking into memberships). And I also have a couple at home video’s I love. Bob Harper has a great series of video’s that are complete cardio conditioning, these are my go to when I am at home and need a good strength workout. He also has one of my all time favorite Yoga dvd’s. But I also follow a few yogi’s online and I’m going to check out Beachbody’s new release, 3 Week Yoga Retreat. Seane Corn, Travis Eliot, Shiva Rea and Rodney Yee are some of the online yoga teachers I follow. Another great source for yoga is Gaiam! I am hoping to incorporate some of the RWB‘s Death By Sled workouts @TheVault (it’s gonna hurt!). I’m dying to try kickboxing!
Toss in some hiking, hula hooping, swim training (yikes) and maybe some biking and climbing for a bit of flavor and I think I’ll be doing just fine. Oh and don’t forget RACES!! They are a huge motivator and so much fun!!
I am so thankful for my husband, friends, and family that stick by and remind me that even when life gives you those lemons, oranges and grapes are out there too. I’m thankful for my INKnBURN, RunJunkEes, RWB, and Hogwarts Running Club families out there who even when I’m not participating give me the motivation and inspiration I need to pick myself back up again. You have no idea how inspiring you really are 💙
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So if you’re out there and life gave you some set backs and kicked your butt to the ground, just remember that when you fall, you can rise again. So start climbing back out of it and live. Live life loud and embrace ever single moment with your whole heart. It’s your one sweet life. Don’t let anyone’s judgement hold you back, even your own. I believe in you and I believe in me. We can do this 💜
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Acceptance

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“Running is about acceptance — of yourself and others. When you’re out on the trail sweating, it doesn’t matter if the guy or gal next to you works at a fast-food joint or is CEO of Kellogg’s. It doesn’t matter what color they are, or how old they are, or what religion they practice, if any at all. Running celebrates our commonality.”

– Bart Yasso

Training, how’s it going?

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INKnBURN Medieval Tech

All this election and post election chaos and I haven’t let myself slip too far off my training schedule, yayy me! Honestly, I’ve needed the distraction and running and working out helps relieve stress and frustration.

I feel I’m starting to get back in sync with the training and have been finding the joy in it again. Depression and stress can kick you on your butt. And it’s so messed up that the one big thing that can help get you out of depression is getting those endocrines flowing and physically feeling better and stronger. Everything just starts to fall back into line. Like a domino effect. My nutrition has been getting healthy again and full circle, that is helping with both the training and the depression. So, much like the ouroboros dragon, swallowing its tail, like a symbol of wholeness, is the circle of cause and effect with physical activity, feeling better, eating better and feeling better so you want to continue over and over again because of that cause and effect.

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The hard part of course is that getting back into it all after you sat the sidelines a while. The good part is that to some degree your body has some muscle memory.

Muscle memory has been used to describe the observation that various muscle-related tasks seem to be easier to perform after previous practice, even if the task has not been performed for a while. It is as if the muscles “remember”. The term could relate to tasks as disparate as playing the clarinet and weight-lifting, i.e., the observation that strength trained athletes experience a rapid return of muscle mass and strength even after long periods of inactivity.”  – Wikipedia

Of course the longer you’re away the less muscle memory, the longer it will take to “bounce back”. I’m no professional but I can tell you that after 3 months away from it all, that first step out the door was hard and the next couple steps were kind of brutal. But then like riding a bike, it was like my body remembered, yeah I like to do this, I like this challenge. Challenge accepted! So don’t despair if you’ve been on the sidelines. Our bodies will follow where our mind leads. And the human body wants to work. It wants to move. Our bodies function better when we make the time to take care of it.

 

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INKnBURN Medieval Capri

It’s a good mental break from all the stress life can throw at you. Politics, world issues, your job, relationship problems, financial problems, whatever. It’s just good practice to get out of your own head and go for a run, or take a lap or two in the pool.

If you’re a nurturer like me, who tends to take care of everyone and everything else around you  first, before yourself, you have to remember you need to remember to take care of yourself. Otherwise you’ll burn out.  Find your mountain and climb it. Be your own hero 

 

I Run. I Yoga.

 

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Yoga is one of the serious loves of my life. I would be lost without it. Yoga helps in everyday life, let alone running. It can be a very spiritual journey for some, it is for me. But it doesn’t have to be, it’s not a requirement and many people avoid yoga because of religious implications. My husband does yoga and in no way is it a spiritual experience for him. For him it’s simply a way to move better and to relax his body. What can yoga do for you the runner? Or just you the human? Read on…

 

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Rest Days – Yin Yoga
Also known as restorative yoga, is fabulous on rest days. You only have to do Downward Dog Pose once, to know good it feels on tired, tight calves. Dynamic stretching helps prevent injury during your runs and aids in shortening recovery time from injuries you do receive. Everything from Butterfly pose, Forward Fold and Dragonfly pose to Savasana (or Corpse pose) are designed to relax & restore

 

 

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Strength Training – Power Yoga

Also known as vinyasa can build strength, particularly in the core. This in turn gives you better balance. This is important for a runner because essentially we are moving from balance on one foot to the next, albeit for short times. Strong balance will give your run a more constant and controlled feeling. The yoga poses Tree, Extended Side Angle and Eagle all work on balance.

 

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For Flexibility – Hatha Yoga
Mobility is a source of many injuries and even prevents some from running. This is especially true as we age. Your joints and muscles become stiffer more easily from sitting (desk jobs) or being a couch potato and with age this increases and happens quicker. Joints become more rigged with age and from repeated foot strikes to the pavement. Yoga helps release the joints and hip flexors and the tension in them, all while lengthening your muscles. This all allows from better mobility and flexibility. There are many gentle yoga poses designed for better flexibility such as Warrior, Reclining Hero, Bridge and Rock The Baby.

 

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For Better Breath Control
Yoga requires concentration and attention to breathing, which will significantly benefit runners. This will also help you to better concentrate during a race and improve your performance because of it. Breathing, as we all know, is an essential element for running, as your ability to take in directly affects how fast you can actually go and how long you can maintain a pace. Learning breath control and any even small meditative mantras help that mind to body connection making you feel more in tune with your body. Learning proper breathing techniques is heart healthy because it slows your heart rate and keeps it at an even beat.

 

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Mental Focus
As humans we assume that our mind and body are always working in sync, but that’s not always true. Any endeavor you do will give you moments of dread. A feeling of “I’m done”. When working on many of the poses in yoga, you’ll find it’s mind over matter. Focusing on flowing from each pose to the next, teaches more of this awareness of body vs space.

 

 

 

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SparkPeople has a great resource for runners who want to start adding yoga into their training plan!

Yoga Poses For Runners

 

 

 

 

 

In the photo’s above I’m wearing:

Dahlia Tech

Dahlia Capri

Monkey Tech

May The 4th (Mystery Release)

 

Walking Meditation

 

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INKnBURN Does Nature

 

 

“I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in.” 

― John Muir

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hiking & walking in nature, for me, is blissful. And each season brings it’s own bit of wonder and wisdom to the hike. I never really sat down and wondered why I love to hike so much. I mean, yeah I love nature and getting any exercise is a pure endocrine giving burst while getting my body in better shape. But I knew it was more than that, something deeper, almost spiritual in form. I found a sense of peace as my footsteps hit the earth and my mind would wander to, wow, to nowhere, and yet everywhere all at the same time. But not in a rushed getting through the day mode, or not in the chaotic work essence. No, it was within a place of complete release. Complete mental relaxation. And that was when I realized, without knowing it, I was meditating by accident.

Having done meditation in a seated position in my home, and on the beach, I knew exactly what meditation was. But this was different, almost a purer meditation. I realized that my eyes drinking in the trees, the beaches, or the streams was guiding my meditation deeper within.

You don’t even have to believe in meditation for meditation to have effect. Meditation is nothing much more than allowing your mind to be still, and then, once still to allow it to wander to places of peace and zero stress. And nature is a remedy in itself for stress. Why do you think major white collar corporations do retreats to the wilderness camps?

In our hectic world of technology and as we rush from job to second job, or from work to making dinner for the family. Or when we have to study relentlessly into the wee hours of night just to get up to go take the test and a full day of classes. We forget to take time to really turn off. Many people turn to the TV to do that, when in fact it may distract, but it doesn’t help your brain find peace. It’s just living someone else’s fictional life instead of your own.

Meditation is hard on some. They don’t know the first steps, or just can’t do it automatically, can’t shut out the world outside. It takes practice. And patience. I think walking meditation is in some ways an easier starting point at meditating 101 because your body is still being allowed to move, while quieting the racket in your mind. I highly recommend being in nature though, not on a busy street where you have to watch for traffic, lights and hear blaring sirens and car honks. A peaceful little park will do.

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Meditations

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From Mind Space
http://www.mindspace.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/walk.mp3

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Trees, Glorious Trees

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Wildflower Long Sleeve Tech By: INKnBURN

Read this article today after my slow and easy 2 miles, “New study delves into the importance of trees in our cities and how they can save our lives“. And all I could think was, really, really? They’re just getting this now?

I think back in the 60’s & 70’s the flower children, hippie culture, folk song writers and progressives of the day were protesting about and heralding the dim future we were facing without nature and trees surrounding us.

Joni Mitchell wrote and released “Big Yellow Taxi” back in 1970 and the Counting Crows did their version in 2002 and numerous others did their spin with this timeless song.

 

Never heard it before? You can follow the links above, or just read the lyrics here:

They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot
With a pink hotel, a boutique
And a swinging hot spot
Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got til its gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot
They took all the trees
And put ’em in a tree museum
And they charged the people
A dollar and a half to seem ’em
No no no
Don’t it always seem to go,
That you don’t know what you’ve got
Til its gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot
Hey farmer farmer
Put away the DDT
I don’t care about spots on my apples
Leave me the birds and the bees
Please!
Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got
Til its gone
They paved paradise
And put up a parking lot
Hey, now they paved paradise
To put up a parking lot
Why not?
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Those are the important part of the lyrics, the rest is here if you want the whole thing. These lines above were a foretelling by the progressive youth of yesterday. Too often that demographic is ignored, or because the thoughts are too progressive for some they are thought to be deviant or absurd.  When will we ever learn that often the youth and millennials have a fresh perspective on the state of the future because they are even more invested in it than those who’s years go beyond that demographic?
That’s not to diminish the fact that the experience and wisdom that those over 30 have are important voices to hear too. But hearing the voices of the future of this world is the hearing the road seen without the fear of change. And hey, all of you over 30, change is GOOD, and often very very necessary.
Surrounding myself with nature is often the only place of grounding within a stressful world. Being among the trees I am reminded just how important preservation of places of nature, wildlife and sacred grounds really is. You can’t smell a flower on a computer screen. Sure you can smell artificial flowers anytime you want, but when is the last time you went out knelt down and smelled a flower?
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“Scientists have known for some time that increasing temperatures associated with global climate change have a negative effect on plant growth. Expanding on this research, a Hebrew University of Jerusalem PhD student has shown that increases in ambient temperature also lead to a decrease in the production of floral scents.

“Increases in temperature associated with the changing global climate are interfering with plant-pollinator mutualism, an interaction facilitated mainly by floral color and scent,” Alon Can’ani explained in his research.” (quote taken from Science Daily: As temperatures rise, flowers emit less scent)

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These things are profoundly sad. The slow but steady destruction of nature seems unimportant to some. But as Joni said “That you don’t know what you’ve got, Til its gone” is prophetic truth in the case of nature and wildlife. Imagining a world where we only know trees, flowers, and wildlife by what we see in a museum is a very bleak thought into our future.

So learn from our past and learn from our mistakes. Listen to our children, the youth of today and tomorrow. It’s their future and their children’s future and so on and so on. Do what you can, what is in your power to help preserve our trees, our wildlife, the streams and oceans, and the very air we breathe.

 

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Get Involved

Stand For Trees

Arbor Day Foundation

The Bees In Decline

Ocean Cleanup

Tree People

 

 

 

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80’s in November! Indian Summer? And of course, a recipe I found!

What, …..
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82° ???? The last week, I’ve had the air conditioning turned off and some nights it’s been cool enough to shut the windows. Fall arrived and “Indian Summer” pushed back in! So I put on monkey (INKnBURN of course – and there are a few sizes left!), laced up my shoes, threw on some capri joggers and out the door I went.

A good dose of vitamin D, a little bit of sweat, and a nice mile later I’m back home looking at the beauty of autumn and just stopped and took in the colors and spent a few moments drinking in the little bit of “summer” we have left. Forcast is looking to fall back into the 60’s this week, great for running & training!! But knowing sunny warm beach days are quickly passing by till next year, does make me a little blue 🌊

Cooler temps means better running days ahead, and that I am more than ready for! But the warm breeze and bright sun today made me realize I’ve heard the term “Indian Summer” my whole life and really, I’m not sure what it actually means. So in my search here is the actual definition via the Farmer’s Almanac

 

 

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WHEN IS INDIAN SUMMER?

Here are criteria for an Indian summer:

  • As well as being warm, the atmosphere during Indian summer is hazy or smoky, there is no wind, the barometer is standing high, and the nights are clear and chilly.
  • A moving, cool, shallow polar air mass is converting into a deep, warm, stagnant anticyclone (high pressure) system, which has the effect of causing the haze and large swing in temperature between day and night.
  • The time of occurrence is important: The warm days must follow a spell of cold weather or a good hard frost.

The conditions described above must occur between St. Martin’s Day (November 11) and November 20. For over 200 years, The Old Farmer’s Almanac has adhered to the saying, “If All Saints’ (November 1) brings out winter, St. Martin’s brings out Indian summer.”

WHY IS IT CALLED INDIAN SUMMER?

Why is Indian summer called Indian summer? There are many theories. Some say it comes from the early Algonquian Native Americans, who believed that the condition was caused by a warm wind sent from the court of their southwestern god, Cautantowwit.

The most probable origin of the term, in our view, goes back to the very early settlers in New England. Each year they would welcome the arrival of a cold wintry weather in late October when they could leave their stockades unarmed. But then came a time when it would suddenly turn warm again, and the Native Americans would decide to have one more go at the settlers. “Indian summer,” the settlers called it. Watch a video from Editor-in-Chief Judson Hale about the origin of Indian Summer.

 

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INDIAN SUMMER APPLESAUCE

INGREDIENTS
4 quarts (1/2 peck) apples
3 or 4 purple plums, pitted
2 cups sugar
juice from 1/2 to 1 lemon, to taste
cinnamon
nutmeg
INSTRUCTIONS
Wash and quarter apples and plums. (No need to peel or core apples.) Place in a large pot and add 2 cups water. Cover and boil until apples are soft and the peels are falling off. Add sugar. Simmer another couple of minutes, until sugar is dissolved. Pour by small amounts into a food mill or other sieve, and press out the applesauce, discarding peels, seeds, and cores. Stir lemon juice, cinnamon, and nutmeg into applesauce.
YIELD:
2 quarts

Source: The Old Farmer’s Almanac (of course 🍎)

 

 

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Tomorrow is a strength training day. I think I’ll be checking out a Les Mills Grit workout. But for now, I’m just going to enjoy the evening and what may be the last warm temps for the next few months 🌃