Saturday, March 30, 2013

Of Mickey, Apollo, and Duke

Oh Mickey
You're so fine
You're so fine
You blow my mind
Hey Mickey!
-Toni Basil

Must be a different Mickey.  I had a conversation with my friend* and we were talking about those moments in a long run when you need to take a moment and regroup before you start running again.  He called these Rocky/Mickey moments.  Which is the exact right metaphor.  On my run today, I had several of these moments.  Early on, my mental Mickey inspired me to "eat lightning and crap thunder", which is amazing advice in all situations.  And it got me through miles 3,4, and 5 when I struggled through finding two water fountains that didn't work before finding a functioning one.  But then I needed a new message.  I tried my mental Apollo, but his constant "eye of the tiger, stallion" was not helpful even for a second.  And so, I moved on to Duke.  Duke and I had a pretty involved and intelligent conversation about how we were going to make it through the run.  The only option not on the table was quitting.  I considered running straight home, eating lunch, and then continuing the run.  I considered taking a cab home and doing the same thing.  I wished I had $6 with me so I could go to Smoothie King.  In the end, I just grinded it out with a couple of walk breaks and completed a very difficult 12 miles.  161 total for the year.

Now that I'm reading this, I wonder how I'll know when I'm hallucinating during a run.  It can't be much different than that. 

*Same friend as always.  Same one who has a lot to say and chooses not to blog.  And so I feel the need to ghostwrite for him.  Or the inverse of ghostwrite.  Whatever.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Years from now

You'll have learned
and you'll think you can do better
And Lord knows, you probably will
- Dave Hause, Years From Now

I took to the streets today, and rode my bike outside. One might think it not advisable to ride a bike outside with a broken foot, but I'm not that one. My foot felt fine after the gym bike, and it was so beautiful outside, and I so wanted a good workout, that I went for it. As I stopped for a truck and came down on my right (broken) foot, I thought that most people probably wouldn't do this. And for some reason it reminded me of the years after my divorce when I first tried sprint triathlons. There was a day when I was riding a mountain bike through the desert hills and was exhausted and sweating my butt off, and I had to stop. And I remember thinking, "why am I doing this to myself?" And the answer was that in some way I wanted to see if I was still alive. I needed proof that I had survived, and that I was strong. And on a much smaller scale I guess that's what today was. Not advisable, perhaps, but necessary all the same. I got in a good workout and broke a good sweat - 10 hilly miles that took me about an hour, or 2.5 running miles. 143 down.

Trusty Chords

It's repetitious and exhausting.
I might need some therapy;
Anything to keep me in check through the day.
-Hot Water Music

I overran today.  Which is different from overgalloping.  Luckily my friend, Ran Dumb Thoughts has defined these terms for us.  Overrunning is when you accidentally run to far.  As in, I meant to run 6 miles, but I ran 6.2 (which is what happened to me today).  Overgalloping is when you run too fast.  Usually to try to impress an audience.  Not as much of a problem for me.  The run today brings me to 149 total for the year.

I took my son to baseball practice and then ran around the neighborhood surrounding the field.  I used my brand new Nike Running App to tell me how far I was going.  I realized that it is really terrible if you keep checking it, because I had thoughts like ".6 miles, all I have to do is that, 9 more times".  These thoughts aren't helpful.  But my run was successful - the streak continues.

But here is a problem.  This guy ( ) seems to have a blog about music where he pretends to talk about running.  And he lists Alkaline Trio, Better Than Ezra, and Hot Water Music on his playlist.  It feels a little bit like plagiarism.  Or copyright infringement.  Or something.  This reminds me of the time I tried to sue Karl Malone for the same thing.  For the record, I invented initiating contact and then complaining about it.  Karl Malone made a career out of it and how many royalty checks have come in?  Exactly.

On that note we add "Trusty Chords" to the playlist.  I have a feeling there's going to be a lot of HWM and associated acts on this playlist.  Enjoy.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013


But never out

That's a line from a Blue October song, and a relatively common phrase, but it applied today. I got some good news from the doctor - my foot doesn't have a bad break, as far as broken bones go, and I just need to wear a ridiculous looking shoe for 6 weeks and then I should be good to go. I can walk as much as I want in this ugly shoe, and I can ride a bike if I put the pressure on my heel. So, with all that in mind, I headed to the gym today. I rode a bike for about 40 minutes, about 8 miles. For the most part I kept the resistance relatively low although I broke a light sweat for awhile. So I will see how it feels tomorrow and as long as things are good I will keep at it. Also, given the extenuating circumstances, I decided to count biking miles as running miles at a 4:1 ratio. I think this is accurate based on the sprint triathlons I've done - the run leg is 3 miles and the bike leg is generally 12. So I think that sounds reasonable and it gives me something to work toward. But, I need to be careful not to push too hard! I'm gonna say one mile running for today because I just didn't work that hard. 140.5.

Deep In The Heart Of Winter

Winners and losers, which one will you be today?
-Social Distortion
I woke up at 4AM* and set out for my 4 mile run.  One challenge with the Tuesday morning run is dodging all the garbage cans that are set out.  But I ran down a street where I don't always run and I saw one of these giant cans decorated with a bunch of bumper stickers.  The most prominent spot was occupied by a "I'm proud of my cub scout" bumper sticker.  It struck me as odd - I guess nothing says pride like the prime spot on the trash can.

I also struggled with the wardrobe - hopefully for the last time this year.  I heard a weather report from a semi-reliable source that it was 37 degrees (F - it will be another month before it hits 37C) and so I dressed for it - gloves and green hat.  Before I left for my run, I checked and it was 47 degrees (still F - it's two months before it will be 47C).  Despite having this new information, I, like a good Texan, still went with the old intelligence, and went out overdressed.  The real problem with having a boiling head is that when you take the hat off - you have a sweaty head in pretty cool weather.  Which makes you want to put the hat back on.  I let none of this bother me on my run and am putting this one in the success column.  Two in a row - I feel like the running equivalent of the Miami Heat.  Or maybe the Chicago Blackhawks, because it's less about winning and more about not losing.  143 total.

* San Diego time.  The fact that I was not in San Diego is not relevant to this post.

Sunday, March 24, 2013


Yeah I'm back in that fight again
Staying on my knees
Just because I'm falling
I'm not giving up
You're gonna have to break me, and I know you can

10:52.  That's what the clock said this morning when I woke up.  To be fair - that is 8:52 San Diego time, so it's not like I slept in that much.  I really wanted to get up early and get this run done today, but I had a lot of trouble going to sleep and so that option was no longer available.  So I got up, tried to figure out what to do to prepare for a long run that I wanted to start immediately.  I settled on a eating part of a nectarine and drinking a glass of water.  Then I grabbed my battered iPod, my keys, and six dollars and went out for my run.  Why the six dollars?  I was worried that I would be dehydrated or undernourished for my run and I figured that if I needed to I could stop at a Smoothie King (which it turns out is not really on the route I planned) and buy a small smoothie to solve both those problems.  And it seemed like $5 might not be enough.

With prep like this, how could my 11-mile run go wrong?  Especially since my last week of trianing went: fail, success, skip, fail.  Well add today to the success column.  I didn't go especially fast, but that's OK because I've included myself in the list of people (everyone) who can't tell me to go faster.  139 total.

And I'm happy to add "Restless" by Rumbleseat to the official playlist.  I love this song.  Over the top love this song.  Top 20 of all time.  Better than Gimme Shelter which is currently sitting in spot #20.  I don't think we are going to get any more music from Rumbleseat (the album title "Rumbleseat is Dead" is a clue), but this is great.  Enjoy.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Not Much To Say

There's something I've been meaning to say to you
I've run out of gas and I'm stuck like glue
-Brendan Benson

The best thing I can say about my run today was that I didn't break any limbs.  In fact, that might be all I'm going to say about it.  I ran 2 miles.  Plan was 5.  128 total. 

Get better ROE.

See y'all in 6-8 weeks

Nuff said. :(

Come on

Shake your body baby
Do the conga
- Gloria Estefan

I was finally able to fit a run in yesterday during my marathon of meetings. I ran along the pier and looked at all the fancy boats in coconut grove. I ran for about 40 min so I'm gonna say about 3.5 miles. I went to dinner last night at a place called Larios which is apparently owned by Gloria Estefan. The mojitos were delicious but the food sucked. I may well have broken my foot falling off a curb outside the restaurant. Not unusual for me but I'm sure the drinks contributed. I wonder if that counts as workers comp. so that's 139.5 for the year but I may be forced to take some time off now. I've been in the security line at the airport for 30 minutes now. Damn sequester.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Harsh Realms

Can't stop the future
Keeps pushing me ahead
-Tom Gabel

I ran 4 miles today, which brings the yearly total up to 126.  The run was fine, but uninteresting.

The future is pushing me ahead.  And we have to build this extremely long playlist.  Harsh Realms by Tom Gabel is in.  Couple of things here - I like this song and I like the video.  I think it is interesting to compare with The Bridge video.  Both have a guy singing next to himself - but this is all the way pared down.  Just feels like it matches the rawness of the song.  And it is raw.  But I really like it.

Monday, March 18, 2013

I'm Shakin'

Early in the morning time
Late in the middle of the night
Whenever this chill comes over me
I wanna hug you with all of my might
That's right and I'm sweatin'
Oh, yeah you got me shakin'

                          - Jack White

At least once or twice every Spring I do this... I overestimate the temperature, I underestimate when the sun is going to come up, I don't estimate the wind at all. And I understand that these things are knowable in the universe, and you would think I would check things out a bit more before heading out for an early morning run, but you would be wrong. My thought process is always just something like "springspringspringspring, I can go out running in the morning without my life being in danger woooooooooooooooo!!!!!"

Which brings me to this morning, wherein I did three miles. It was 25 degrees, breezy and dark for at least the first two miles of it. I was only wearing one pair of pants, when I should have been wearing two, and I wore my regular hat instead of my greenie. 

In short, I was cold. 

139 down.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

The mountains and the trees
Are they just what you need?
- Matt Costa, Astair

I did a mountain run today and it was beautiful if not exhausting. I'm always amazed at how the desert blooms in spring. But since I lost 12 pounds last year, I have found 8 of them, which is weird since I wasn't even looking. And I feel them every step. Sigh.

I also did 3 yesterday. I wasn't sure if I was going to go but I needed a stress reliever after finding a stash of beer under my daughters dresser. Good times for sure. That makes 136 for the year. I've been pushing pretty hard this last week because I'm going to Florida for the week tomorrow, and running while traveling is always a crap shoot. Dreadmill here I come.

The Bridge

He said, "I don't understand, this was not part of the plan..."
-The Loved Ones

I set out today with a plan to run 10 miles and I'll explain why later.  But two things happened - first my legs hurt the entire way.  Second - I was attacked.  There were two of them - one got me high, the other came low.  In the police line-up I was able to identify the first one as a leafy branch and the second as a raised portion of the sidewalk.  Anyway - the first one pokes me in the eye, the second one tries to trip me (but I, graceful as a baby giraffe, avoid failing) and as I stumble my iPod goes flying.  It still works (somehow), but now I am lucky enough to have an answer to "what do you want for your birthday?"

I only completed 8.5 miles of my run today, which means on day 1 of my full marathon training, I have already fallen short of the goal.  That's right - I will run in San Diego under 3 conditions

1) no one suggests, encourages, intimates, or otherwise implies that I shoud run faster at any time
2) I reserve the right to stop 1/2 way through and congratulate myself on running a 1/2
3) if we see Phillip Rivers, Ran Dumb Thoughts has to present him a prepared list of all of his (meaning Rivers) faults.

Those terms seem reasonable. 

And most importantly, we add "The Bridge" by The Loved Ones to the official playlist.  I really like this song - not so high on the video.  It just feels too goofy.  I know - that's me saying it's too goofy.  Doesn't matter though - the song is still awesome.  Enjoy.

Desperately Seeking Spring

I hit the trail today for 4 miles searching for signs of Spring... wasn't much there. Some green grass and the birds flying with more purpose than usual. But it was still a good run.

I'm at 136 for the year.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

There'll be no value in the strength
of the walls that I have grown
There'll be no comfort in the shade
Of the shadows thrown
- Mumford and Sons, Lover of the Light

Tonight I went for a run in bf's hood. He went at 5 but I waited for the sun to go down a little more. It was 90 damn degrees today. It always feels too soon. I did a loop around a park and was lucky to be in the shadows most of the way so as not to damage my precious skin. I think it was about 2.5 miles. I had forgotten my running shoes so I wore an old pair I had here, the ones I wore Vegas in fact. They were really no good for my blisters. Fortunately bf had a mad birdies bandaid to ease my pain. Then I made wild salmon, potatoes and green beans for a healthy dinner. Now I'm gonna ruin all that effort with some chocolate chip cookies. Yum. 128.5 down.

10 Kinds Of Tired

I am far too young to feel so old
And far too tired to care
-The Lowest of the Low

5.5 today.  Brings me up to 113.5 total.  Got nothing left.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

How fickle my heart

And how woozy my eyes
I struggle to find any truth in your lies
And now my heart stumbles on things I don't know
My weakness I feel I must finally show
- Mumford and Sons, Awake My Soul

Tonight I had a pretty dang good one, even with fat dog. I haven't timed myself in awhile, so on the way back I started my ipod pedometer. I did the second half of my run in 19 minutes, which is about 11 min miles for my 3.5 mile route. I won't complain about that. My pedometer said it was 3.8 miles and 10 min miles, but I know that to be false since I've clocked this particular run about 1000 times both in my car and on the computer. Of course I prefer what my iPod had to say. Pretty little lies. Also I did a slow and easy 3 yesterday. 126 down.

One, Two, Three - Hell I Don't Know

Well its 1 2 3 4
take the elevator
at the hotel yorba
I'll be glad to see you later
all they got inside is vacancy
-The White Stripes

I ran about 2 miles yesterday.  I was at a hotel that had a jogging track of some distance and I ran around it several times.  I can't be any more exact than that.

My day started at about 6AM when I was wandering around the first floor of my cavernous hotel thinking about breakfast.  I didn't have to be anywhere that early, but I had a difficult day ahead and was ready to get it over with.  There wasn't a soul around - except my boss - who had the same idea.  We ate - met up with corporate counsel (yep - that type of day) and then went to it.

At the end of the day, I didn't really want to run, but I was feeling sluggish and needed to do something.  So I ran around the hotel and around the track a few times.  Counts for something.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Top of the World

I'm on top of the world, eh!
I'm on top of the world, eh!
 - Imagine Dragons, Top of the World

Now, THIS is a really cool song that makes it impossible not to smile and pick up the pace a little.  I had a good run tonight - 3.5 in the neighborhood, sans fat dog.  It was so good to get in stride and just go.  My blisters started bothering me at about 2.5 miles.  I just need to give in and go get new shoes.  I know I keep saying that.  I'm topping off my run with Totino's party pizza, brownies, cat blanket and the Bachelor.  All is right with the world.  119.5 down.

If I am eligible to nominate songs for the play list that never ends, I nominate this one.  Listen, and tell me if you didn't smile.

Sunday, March 10, 2013


I have five clocks in my life
And only one has the time right
I'll just unplug it for today
-Matt and Kim

Daylight savings.  No matter how many times I remind myself in the approaching days that it's coming, I still screw it up.  I think it's because I grew up in a land without this phenomenom.  AZ doesn't celebrate this changing of the clocks for at least one of the following reasons 

1) There's plenty of sun and so we don't need to screw with the clocks
2) God doesn't want us screwing with the clocks
3) You can't make us

Anyway - I ran this afternoon - 3.5 miles.  The .5 was just to get my total for the year on a whole number.  So now I'm up to 106.

"Daylight" by Matt and Kim makes the official playlist.  These people are so damn happy singing this song.  Good thing the internet has lyrics - when you sing nonsense, it's really hard to understand the words.  Enjoy


When you feel my heat
Look into my eyes
It's where my demons hide
It's where my demons hide
- Imagine Dragons, Demons

After crazy freezing weather and more hail on Friday, it was a lovely 68 degrees today, so I took to the mountain.  It was tough getting off the couch where a dark mood had settled in, but as always a good run made me feel better.  The trail was really crowded today, lots of families and dogs out enjoying the weather.  One guy was walking a chihuahua, and when the dog would lunge or bark at other dogs or people, the guy just lifted him off the ground by his leash, which was attached to a body harness on the dog.  So the dogs legs are spinning in the air while he barks and tries to be threatening.  It was hilarious.  Makes me wish I had a harness like that sometimes.  So 4.5 done today, 116 for the year. 

Wrath of Fancy Hotel Treadmills

And the Andalusian tribes
Setting the lay of Nebraska alight
'Til all that remains is the arms of the angel

                                  - The Decemberists

Another Nebraska song, even though I am no longer in Nebraska. But my experience there lives on in the form of some kind of strain in my calf. Remember the stupid treadmill in the hotel that thinks it's fancy? Yeah, the one that felt like it was on an incline but really wasn't.... well, I got done with that run and felt a curious pain in my left calf the rest of the day. Today, I went another three miles, and the pain is definitely curious and definitely a pain. It's in this weird spot on my calf, and it is definitely strained! Stupid motherf***ing hotel treadmills! It was probably not level or something. 

I have also had kind of a hard time getting back up to altitude. I went "running" Friday night, and walked so much of it that I only counted one mile towards the 500 (I'm confident I ran one of the miles, probably walked most, if not all, of the other two). So, I downshifted to the elliptical on Saturday and today managed to get three miles of actual running in. I went really slow and still had a hard time catching a good deep breath. 

At any rate, 121 down.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Dude, Where's My Car?

Black coat, white shoes, black hat, Cadillac
Yeah, the boy's a time bomb

I ran 4 miles today on a brand new route.  It took me past a gas station where I saw the world's dirtiest man getting into the world's dirtiest Cadillac.  At first I wondered what event had happened that got both the man on the inside and the car on the outside so dirty.  But then, like almost everything in life, it made sense once I viewed it through the prism of Seinfeld.  This man was mechanic dirty.  And he was upset that the car's owner wasn't taking good care of the car and so he stole it.  Which explains why he peeled out of the gas station.  That checks out.  Thanks Jerry.  What would we have done without you?

102.5.  Finally past the century mark. 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Ain't a walk in the park

I ain't the kind you take home to mama
I ain't the kind to wear no ring
- Miranda Lambert

I did go for a run yesterday, but it was no walk in the park. In fact, it was a stop in the park. Dammit. So I got in 2 miles. Tonight I went in the hood again and had much better luck, but it was a tough one. I pretty much walked most of the last mile because the blisters on my feet hurt so bad. It's time to give in and get some new shoes I guess. 3.5 today. 111.5 down.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Don't Go Back to Rockville

Going where nobody says hello
They don't talk to anybody they don't know
                                               - R.E.M.

A song that I'm pretty sure was written about Omaha.... maybe the entire state of Nebraska.

I'm in Omaha and got 2.5 miles done on the hotel treadmill, which felt like it was on an incline even though it wasn't. The treadmill also kept giving me updates like "30% complete" which I thought was interesting given that I don't remember telling the treadmill what I was planning to do. But apparently it just knew.

My hotel is the worst kind of hotel, one that isn't fancy but thinks it's fancy. The bed sucks and frankly I'm pretty impressed with myself for going running this morning since I am working 12 hour days and sleeping on a crappy bed. You should all be very impressed as well.

Monday, March 4, 2013

I did 3.5 in the hood today with fat dog. Too tired to be any more creative. 106 down.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

The Eleventh Commandment

I saw a grave dug by a preacher
Just to see what it would make
-Blind Pilot

5.5 today - brings the total to 98.5.  Surprisingly on a run of this length, nothing happened.  The most notable event was when I ran past the Catholic church as it was letting out.  The church crowd, with some sense of entitlement, was taking up the entire sidewalk.  I cut them some slack since they currently have no leader, but I did want them to turn around and go back in until they learned to share the sidewalk.  I'm now told "Thou shall share" is not one of the 10 commandments.  No matter - I'd like to nominate "move away from a sweaty man" to be added to the list.  Just a thought.  
In these bodies we will live
In these bodies we will die
And where you invest your love
You invest your life
- Mumford and Sons, Awake My Soul

It is a gorgeous overcast day in the desert today. I ran on the mountain and it righteously kicked my ass, but the desert wild flowers were starting to bloom and it was beautiful. I ran into an old friend on the trail that I haven't seen in months so it was a happy coincidence. I met her on an alumni trip to China several years ago. I brought K with me, then 9 yrs old, and she had her son with her who was 18 and deaf. The kids got along famously and one of Ks strongest memories from that trip is of JJ running through the tunnels on top of the Great Wall shouting joyously because he could "hear" the reverberation of his voice against the stone. This friend was also on a trip to South Africa in 2011 when I brought J. It was so good to see her and I hope we do a better job of staying in touch. Anyway, 4.5 mountain miles done and I'm feelin the pain. 102.5 down.

Clear eyes of strangers

I can't compete
Just can't recover
How many years it's been, it's day one in my mind
                                 Jimmy Eat World

Courtesy of my sister, and apparently her awesome boyfriend who makes her awesome playlists.

I had an okay week, but did five miles today on the elliptical, so that doesn't count towards the 500 (curses!). I worked hard, though. Next week I am in Omaha, with forays to Topeka and some little town in Missouri that I can't quite remember just now. The weather there is supposed to be mostly crappy, so it'll be the hotel treadmill for me. 

112 miles down.