hiking jockey hollow morristown
Hiking Jockey Hollow National Historic Park (Morristown)

Jockey Hollow National Historic Park (Morristown, NJ)

It’s been a few months since my last hike.   With my husband deployed, and a busy schedule, I didn’t make it hiking.  Plus, I’m not hiking in zero degrees.  Anyway, as many readers and people know, I enjoy hiking as much as running.

Jockey Hollow National Historic Park is a large park located near Morristown.  Morristown, NJ has a sizeable military presence. Situated in Jockey Hollow National Historic Park itself, the Wick House is named after Henry Wick.  It’s a 1,400-acre farm covered by forest.  A large number of trees attracted Washington’s army to the area as a winter encampment site because they needed logs to build cabins for shelter and wood to burn for heating and cooking.

The location is now open to the public and is furnished to portray its use as a general’s headquarters which is what brought us there. My husband enjoys seeing all of the different sites in Jockey Hollow National Historic Park spots that NJ has to offer.

Even with about a foot of snow on the ground, the Jockey Hollow National Historic Park trail is relatively easy to follow.  It was about 6.5 miles, and with stops and taking our time, it took about 3 hours.  It felt more of an easy stroll versus a rigorous hike up a side of a mountain.  At the Jockey Hollow National Historic Park, there were a few people with children as well as dogs, but the trail itself is quiet.  I could see myself running there if we lived locally.

When we arrived at Jockey Hollow National Historical Park, the cloud and tree cover made it much chillier than anticipated.  We started hiking on the road, and when we met the trail, it was time to hike through the snow.

hiking jockey hollow morristown

The trail went around a small frozen lake.  hiking jockey hollow morristown

Then we crossed another main road through Jockey Hollow National Historical Park, and had a few small climbs as well.

hiking jockey hollow morristown

hiking jockey hollow morristown

As we were hiking Jockey Hollow National Historical Par,k got warmer (around 35) some of the snow began melting, and it got swampy.  In case you wondered, I do all of my hiking in the Brooks Cascadia, a trail running shoe.  So far, it’s worked well. At the end the Jockey Hollow National Historical Park, we stopped and paused for some good snow yoga…or snowga as it is also called.

hiking jockey hollow morristown

(Just kidding, of course, I’m not a yoga person, and I am as flexible as the tinman.

hiking jockey hollow morristown

The Jockey Hollow National Historical Park hike took us about 3 hours for 6.5 miles.  We stopped, and enjoyed the sights of Jockey Hollow National Historical Park and didn’t rush through.  Jockey Hollow National Historical Park is reasonably comfortable, scenic hike, and even in the snow, we saw several pets and families.

Questions for you:

Do you like hiking?

Are there any historical spots in your area?

me pheonix half marathon
Training: Workouts, Travel and a New PR

Last week was my best week of training in the previous 2 years, but any week that brings you new PR is a good week.

Anyway,  my log from the week is relatively simple.

Monday: 6ish mile hike in Jockey Hollow park
Tuesday: 6x800s (5:58 pace) with 400 jog in between warmup/cooldown total miles 10
Wednesday: Easy 60/ART with Dr. Kemenosh
Thursday: Rest+Travel to Pheonix
Friday: 60-minute shakeout run
Saturday; Phoenix Half Marathon 1:22.03
Sunday: Easy 45 minute shakeout

Workout: 6X800s (5:58 pace)

My body was relatively tired from racing the Saturday before.   Ultimately I decided it was better to do the workout on tired legs and have an extra day of easy running/rest before Phoenix.  I’m glad I made that choice, and it was still a good workout.

Phoenix Half Marathon: 1:22.03

I PRed.  I have a self-reflected a lot about this race as it’s my first PR in two years.  I took the race out fast, and my first mile was on PR pace of 6:22.  Most of the mile were well below and ranged from 6:09-6:18.  The final two miles were more gritty, and I was fighting for time, weaving through 10kers (6:26).

When I looked back at my full marathon a few years ago, I realize that the first half of the full was very much downhill while the second half and the half marathon course levels off. It is a much easier course than my previous PR in Carlsbad. However, I am also in better fitness.  I crossed the finish line, knowing, there was nothing more I could give that day.  It was a day that everything aligned with travel going well, fitness, and even the weather being pretty much ideal.

Now, I’m just enjoying Phoenix for a couple of days and then heading back to NJ.

Posts of the Week:

Don’t Just “Survive Winter Running”

Saucony Triumph ISO 4 Shoe Review

Frostbite 5 Miler (30:25)

Questions for you:

When was your last PR?

How was your week of training?

 

Hightstown Diner

Hightstown Diner (Hightstown, NJ)

A few weeks ago, Christine and I met for lunch at the Hightstown Diner in Hightstown.  Even though it’s not that far, it’s one of the last I haven’t been too in Mercer County.  Christine has remained one of my closest friends throughout the last four years of living in NJ.  I cannot believe the time has flown! Guy Fieri came to the Hightstown Diner with the Food Network. If Guy Fieri likes the Hightstown Diner, it must be good, right?

We arrived at the Hightstown Diner for lunch, and the Hightstown Diner wasn’t crowded.  It’s a small diner located in downtown Hightstown.  It was featured on Diners, Drive In’s and Dives several years ago!

Hightstown Diner Atmosphere: A
The Hightstown Diner is what you expect in a diner.  Old school tables, booths, and a full-length bar.  The outside is all cobblestone.  I liked the menus because they showed the diner when it first opened and a scenic photo.

Hightstown Diner Coffee: B
The coffee at the Hightstown Diner was hot. However, we had to ask a few times for refills.  While good, I could have used a few more.

Hightstown diner Food network coffee

Hightstown Diner Food: A
The Hightstown Diner menu is medium-sized.  The Hightstown Diner is known for their corned beef hash, early-bird specials, and overall good food. They don’t have a lot of unique items, but they have everything a New Jersey diner should have: eggs and pancakes, sandwiches and a few seafood entrees if you want.

Hightstown diner Food network

I was craving a Gyro.  I like gyros, but they are one of the messiest sandwiches you can order.  The Gyro platter came with a lot of food: soup, salad as well as French fries.  I knew that would probably be a lot so I opted to sub the fries with the “vegetable of the day” which was carrots.

Hightstown diner Food network

The Gyro itself was great.  I haven’t had one in a while, and it was stuffed to the brim with meat, tzatziki sauce, lettuce, tomato.  The salad was rather big for a side.  The romaine lettuce could have been chopped more and easier to eat but other than that good.

Hightstown diner Food network

With the winter, I’ve been ordering a lot of soups.  Nothing spoke to me, so I decided to try something new: The Greek chicken.  I had no idea what to expect, and it was a cream based soup with chicken and rice.  I couldn’t locate much chicken, but in all, it wasn’t bad.

Hightstown diner Food network

Hightstown Diner Service: C
The waitress at the Hightstown Diner was extremely friendly, but we could have used far more refills.  For not being overly crowded, it took a while for the food to come out.  Typically, that would haven’t been an issue. However, we hadn’t planned on staying for over an hour, and it caused us to rush somewhat eating.

Hightstown Diner Cost: $

For my entire platter and coffee, the cost was $12.

Summary/Would I Come Back to the Hightstown Diner?
I liked the Hightstown Diner, and I’ll be back again.  While it was slower than hoped, the food and quality were excellent.

Atmosphere: A
Coffee: B
Food: A
Service: C
Price: $
Overall: B

You Can See All Diners Here.

Questions for you:
Have you ever been to a restaurant on the food network?
What is your favorite cooked vegetable?

saucony triumph 4 shoe review
Saucony Triumph ISO 4 Shoe Review

Saucony Triumph ISO 4

Recently, I integrated the Saucony Triumph ISO 4 into my rotation.  The Saucony Triumph ISO 4 is one of the few shoes I seem to try each updated model.  In summary, I personally liked the original Triumph ISO the best.  As the shoe is updated more, I’ve found other Saucony shoes that I like better included the Saucony Freedom and even the cheaper Saucony Ride 10.

saucony triumph 4 shoe review

Saucony Triumph ISO 4 Fit:

The of the Saucony Triumph ISO 4 is different than the Triumph 3 and actually reminds me a lot more of both the original Triumph ISO and the Triumph ISO 2.  The Saucony Triumph ISO 4 is actually a little longer than the 3, but still narrow.  Throughout the years, I’ve worn anywhere from a 9.5-10.5 wide in the Triumph.  This year, I find the 10 wide to be the best fit and most true to size for me.

The Saucony Triumph ISO 4 uses an isofit upper which allows for an adaptive fit system. With the Isofit technology, you are able to get cinch the shoe tighter. The tongue is attached as well. Together with the lacing system and engineered mesh upper, the Saucony Triumph ISO 4 allows for a comfortable running experience.

I found an interesting issue, I haven’t had before with the Triumph that the midfoot is much more snug.  Typically, I liked the Triumph ISO because it is a wider shoe model.  While there is sufficient room in the Saucony Triumph ISO 4, I did find the updated model to be much narrower (even the wide) in the midfoot region.

Finally, if you have never run in Saucony shoes, the heel counter is much lower than other models.  I’ve never had an issue “running or slipping out of the shoe,” and don’t know anyone who has, but it is something to be aware of!  We have many people that come into work that don’t like the shoe because of the low heel.  It’s also a hard shoe to put orthotics and inserts into.

Saucony Triumph ISO 4 Ride:

The Saucony Triumph ISO 4 has gone through a few significant changes. Now the Saucony Triumph ISO 4 features a full-length everun midsole and everun topsole.  Previous models included about half EVA and half Everun.

Now, it’s full Everun.

Why does this matter?  It makes the Saucony Triumph ISO 4 much firmer than previous models.  It’s has become much more responsive, but still cushioned shoe.  In fact, it’s much more similar to the Saucony Freedom. There is a high level of energy return and it makes the shoe feel like a maximum cushioned neutral shoe.

Changing to an entire bottom of Everun means the shoe’s dynamic drastically changes.  If you have run in the Saucony  Freedom, it will feel much more similar.  The Saucony Triumph ISO 4 feels much less soft and much firmer than the previous Triumph models.

Saucony Triumph ISO 4 Summary:

  • I do like the Saucony Triumph ISO 4.  I’ve put just over 100 miles and not had an issue.  While the midfoot is tighter than previous models, it’s not uncomfortable.
  • The Saucony Triumph ISO 4 itself does feel drastically different, both in fit as well as ride.  It’s definitely not a model of shoe I would buy blindly online.
  • Sadly, with the integration of the full bottom of Everrun in the Saucony Triumph ISO 4, the retail price of the Saucony Triumph ISO 4 has gone up to $160.
  • Personally, I’ll continue running in Saucony Triumph ISO 4, and I think it’s one of the better versions Saucony has made in the last two years.  The original Saucony Triumph ISO was still my favorite. I feel cushioned throughout the entire gait cycle.

Keep in mind, these are all personal preferences.  Saucony is not paying me to review their shoes.  What works for me, might not work for you.  All of our feet are different. 

Current Rotation:

Daily Runs: Saucony Triumph ISO 4, Brooks Glycerin 15 and Hoka Clifton 4
Workouts: Altra Escalante, Nike Zoom Fly
Races: Saucony Type A and Saucony Endorphin

Questions for you:
What is your favorite running shoe?
Is there a model, you’ve run through several models? Have you run in the Saucony Triumph ISO 4? 

frostbite 5 miler me running
Frostbite 5 miler (30:25)

Last weekend I ran the Frostbite 5 miler.  To be honest, I hadn’t treated my body well the week before.  Valentine’s Day is one of my favorite holidays, and I like to celebrate with sugar.   It doesn’t have to be a fancy date, but I’ll be the first to tell you I didn’t make healthy choices.

I have always wanted to do the Frostbite 5 miler.  It’s competitive race as well as challenging course too.

My husband and I arrived at the race a little later than anticipated and I got about 2-mile warmup in.  I would have preferred a little longer, but took what I could get.  As I was delayering at the start; the race went off.  I panicked threw my long sleeve off and sprinted out.  I was boxed in, but I was able to run on the outside and slowly progress where I wanted.  The first mile I went out fast trying to get to a better spot.

I had no idea what place I was in, and I didn’t care.  I made an arbitrary goal of under 31 minutes for 5 miles.  6:10 was fast, but I thought my fitness was there.  I hit the first mile in 5:57.

During the second mile, I settled in a good rhythm and was going back and forth with another local female runner.  I gathered I was in the top ten of women which was cool with me.  We hit the second mile in 5:51 and I knew I was not going to hold that forever.

The next two miles climbed several hills.  We did makeup with downhills, but the long hills definitely took their toll on my quads.  Every uphill my friend would pass me, and downhills I would run by her.  Ultimately she passed me and never looked back.  We hit both miles in 6:14.

The last mile was almost all uphill and my legs were not in the mood to climb anything else.  I kept looking at my watch and hoping the race would finish soon.  The final mile felt like it took forever, but I finished in 6:05 and crossed the finish in 30:25.  I was 6th women overall.

frostbite 5 miler me running

I’m happy, and pleasantly surprised with my finish.  My goal had been under 31 and with the rolling hills, I can’t complain.  Technically I also ran an 18:35 5k which is my fastest 5k in a while too.  It feels good to be coming back to fitness.

Questions for you:

What’s your favorite distance to race?

Do you run downhills or uphills better?

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