Liza Howard. Ultrarunning Mom.

Ultrarunning Mom

86 and loving it

I wanted this post to be about my wonderful new alcohol stove (which I have reclaimed from Asa who decided it was a piece of his fire fighting rescue equipment), but Eliot didn’t bring home any alcohol from work, so the post and the pictures will have to wait until this weekend’s campout at Bandera.  We’re all helping out at Cactus Rose and we’ll camp out at the race start with the San Antonio crew on Friday night.  Asa is over-the-moon excited and so am I.  Tents, S’mores cooked over alcohol stoves (burn ban), star gazing, and absolutely no pre-race jitters.  Very nice.

But right now: The weather in San Antonio.  It was 86 degrees here today.  October 24th.  I finished my run looking like I’d been tossed in a lake.  Sweeeeeaaaa-teee!!! as Asa says.  I was a bit put out.  I would have done a happy little jig if it’d dropped down to 86 back at the end of September.  But by the end of October I expect to be able to start gloating about the running weather here compared to the rest of the country.  So all I could think to say to little old man near the water fountain after my run was, “Kind of hot for the end of October!”   He looked at me and smiled broadly.  “Oh, I love it. It’s just a wonderful day today.  Just beautiful.”

Yes.  True enough.  Blue skies and sunshine.  “Just a bit hot though…”

Cute old man full of happiness: “Are you from San Antonio?”

Dripping sweat onto the sidewalk me: “Oh, yes.  I just thought it’d be cooler by now.”

Delightful octogenarian in very white sneakers: “Are you running today?”

A long conversation about how I wasn’t training for the San Antonio marathon, how he really cut back on his running after turning eighty though he still gets in a mile or two when his knees are feeling good, and ultramarathoning ensued.  By the end, I thought the weather was perfect too.

I told him I imagined our paths would cross again (small park we both frequent), but it was such a jarring reminder about how good life is right now that it’s easy to imagine he hiked around the corner after I drove off, unfurled his wings, and flew back to heaven.

Hope your days were lovely too.



  • Pommers

    Great image Liza – made me smile :-)

    • Anonymous

      Thanks and good.  :)

  • Domingo

    Hope you guys have a good day out at CR Saturday. Will be celebrating my 23rd wedding anniversary that day.

    • Anonymous

      We will miss you, but I suppose there are more romantic places to celebrate your 23rd anniversary.  Congratulations to you both!

  • Emily

    I love this story…have fun this weekend! We miss you guys…

    • Anonymous

      Asa was asking about Evan yesterday.  Come on Southwest, we need some $49 plane tickets.

  • Tim Smith

    What an awesome post. 

    • Anonymous


  • Angel

    Did he smell like fresh baked cookies? Was he eating candy corn or any other super-sugar goodies? I hear those are clues to angels posing as regular people ….. besides the very white sneakers :)

    • Anonymous

      I did not get close enough to smell him — since I was not smelling sweet myself.  Does that candy corn thing hold true around Halloween too?  

  • Paige

    Big smile!  What a lovely post :)

    • Anonymous

      Thanks Paige. It was a pretty lovely experience.