Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Just a sweaty run

I had my final checkup on my broken foot this morning and all is right with the world, so I went out at about 10. It was definitely warm but there was a decent breeze blowing. I got 3 done and it wasn't pretty but I've managed to eliminate some walk breaks and the remaining ones are shorter. Looking forward to a day off tomorrow after 4 days in a row except that I will be traveling to and from Utah all day. Boooo. Here's hoping I come home ready to hire a new employee.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Big Plans

I'll be alright.
Motivated by spite.
I prefer daytime, to a nightlife,
but I'll be alright because
All my big plans end in miserable failure.

Some catching up to do. I ran 3 miles on Saturday - uneventful. I ran 4 miles on Sunday - around Lake Livingston. Or I guess I should say near Lake Livingston. I had hopes of running by the water, but I really ran in a neighborhood that is somewhat close to the water. And I rode several miles on a jet ski. Pretty sure that is why my shoulders feel like they are about to fall off.

So we are now in the home stretch. I will run tomorrow and Wednesday and then rest. And then carbo load. And yes the playlist is now complete. So we are all good. The last song is Big Plans by Sunriser - if I'm still on the course after 5:36, hearing the above lyrics should cheer me up. Really. Not because I'll feel like a miserable failure, because it will remind me of the Seinfeld episode when Jerry tried to return a jacket out of spite. It went something like this.

Employee: You can't return something out of spite
Jerry: Fine. I just don't want it.
Employee: You already said spite. Too late.

And also because it will remind me that I'm not in Vegas running at night. Because I do prefer daytime running. And so I will be alright. So positive and uplifting. I can't believe you people hear negativity in these lyrics. What's wrong with you?

This is probably my 8th favorite Sunriser song, but it is still pretty cool.



And you've got your demons
And darling, they all look like me
- Taylor Swift, Sad Beautiful Tragic

I went out today around 12:30, which actually wasn't too late because there was this odd overcast all morning to match my mood. I got up around 830 and my legs were a little achy from yesterday so I figured I would just take the day off. But after I finished my book I went outside and it still seemed cool so I went. My goal was to just do two miles, but I felt okay and I had time on my hands so I kept going. It got pretty sweaty and was about 85 degrees out but a breeze was blowing so it was ok. I e done ok this month. 3.5 for today.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Do you ever miss her
Do you feel the cold wind whisper
Is there anything more deafening?
- New Amsterdams, Hangin on for Hope

I took to the mountain this morning around 9:30. It was definitely too late, but there was a breeze blowing and I needed a good outside run. I read somewhere recently that exercising outside is particularly good for mental health, and I definitely find that to be true. It's so much better than gym time, so suffering the heat is well worth it. I did some good running on the way up and ran about half way down. Then I came home and took a nap. Ahhhh. 4.5 for the morning.

Saturday, May 25, 2013


For me, saying "I am married now" is like saying "I am lucky now." I stumbled and crashed my way into the literal arms of something I never quite believed in before: my soul mate. A man who frequently smells like cheeseburgers and makes me laugh hard every day and makes me want to be worthy of being his husband.

- Augusten Burroughs 

I read this article this morning and it was so unbearably sweet. I went out at 10:30 this morning which was really too late, but I needed my morning relaxation and reading time. And peanut butter honey toast time. So it was already over 80 degrees and sunny when I started out. I did 3 miles but kinda gave up about 2/3 through and walked the rest. Not that I hadn't walked before giving up. But anyway. Alpharetta must be sea level or something because it was much easier out there this week. Which bodes well for the boys in San Diego this weekend. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Back At It

Though he looks severe and erudite
A hundred degrees Fahrenheit he's as cool as an ermine
-Barr Brothers

Alcohol is both the cause of and the solution to all of life's problems

I've taken a couple of days off from running because my back has been bothering me.  But I decided to revise the above quote from the poet Homer and try to see if running could be both the cause of and the solution to all of life's problems.  Even though my back isn't quite right, maybe it could be fixed by a short run.  Terrible logic, decent result.  I followed up my 3 miles run with some lateral jumps and crunches and actually felt pretty good after all of it.  Brings me up to 261 for the year.

I'm now told that the above quote was from a large yellow cartoon character.  Not the author of the Iliad.  My mistake.  I can't ever keep those guys straight.

And we add "Old Mythologies" to the official marathon playlist.  Good Canadian band.  Even if they are from Montreal (who also lost in the first round of the playoffs).  I'm proud of them using the Fahrenheit scale, the above lyric plays so much better than saying 40 degrees Celsius.  Anyway, it wasn't 100 degrees on my run today, but it felt like it.  And I'm pretty sure that I looked both severe and erudite.  Enjoy.


Tuesday, May 21, 2013


Unfortunately truth is cold
So you stay young while I get old
But always know, I'm your best friend
- No Use For A Name, For Fiona (for Kailey)

This is a gorgeous little dirty that Bad Haircut turned me on to. This and the New Amsterdams and Fun make up almost my whole current playlist. So this evening I am in Georgia. I was laying by the pool soaking my feet after a good run when I realized I was laying in ants. So I moved to a chair. I had a pretty good run after I got to the hotel. I was directed to a beautiful forested road where I ran by the HQ of Verizon. Also the road was lined with these crosses in remembrance of local war heroes, a couple dating back to the revolutionary war! It was pretty cool. Although now that I think about it, I didn't see any for Iraq or Afghanistan. I wonder why. I ran for 47 minutes so I'm going to credit myself 3.5 miles. I know that doing the mountain really helps but I was still pretty darn slow ad I did do some walking and exploring.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Not easy

Nobody said it was easy
Nobody said it would be this hard
- from a Willie Nelson cover of the Coldplay song that inexplicably appeared on my iPod this morning

So I ran on the mountain again this morning and it was harder than yesterday. I still ran a decent amount up and most of the way down, but I was worn OUT by the time I got to the top so I took the shorter route back and went back the way I came. I just did t have that extra half mile in me. I saw a desert hare and a roadrunner on the trail along with the requisite lizards. I haven't moved much since I got home except to shower and consume vast quantities of iced tea. And pee about 30 times. Now I'm at Ks piano recital trying to keep my eyes open.


I'm sick of feeling like I lost this fight
I''m sick of graying out the wrongs and rights
-The Loved Ones

Today I ran by a cricket game.  I have a basic understanding of this game - it's baseball for people who think that baseball games are too short.  As I ran by, the centerfielder (or super wicket bowler or whatever the correct name is) was either doing yoga or pushups.  The fact that he was in the gray area between downward dog and a pushup suggests that the execution left something to be desired.  Perhaps he was realizing he doesn't have the attention span for cricket.  Or else, this is how they get through the games. 

That was the highlight of my run.  Otherwise it was a 10 mile run followed by a 3 mile walk.  I was tired and hungry.  If I wasn't so hungry, I probably would have stopped and taken a nap in my friend's front yard.  Or driveway. 

I guess it's all a matter of perspective - I completed a half marathon today or I failed on my final long run.  It's tough to know how to frame this one.

Oh - and Jane is in.  Loud and fast.  Just like how I run.  Except the fast part.

Saturday, May 18, 2013


My head is on fire
But my legs are fine
After all they are mine
- fun, carry on

Today I got up early and braved the mountain. I will admit I was a tad nervous given how long it's been, but I knew I could do it. I ran in most of the usual places and took a few more walk breaks, and I walked about half the way down. I was reminded of our Lord of the Flies hike about this time last year, because I found myself covered in flies any time I stopped. I realized that one of the purposes the mountain fills is to renew the population of houseflies every spring. Just another benefit. So 4.5 for today.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Take Me To The Riot

My city's still breathing (but barely it's true)
through buildings gone missing like teeth.
The sidewalks are watching me think about you,
sparkled with broken glass.
I'm back with scars to show.
Back with the streets I know
Will never take me anywhere but here.
-The Weakerthans

I ran 6 miles today and 3.5 on Tuesday.  It was a bit of a sweaty run - 83 degrees didn't sound like it would be terrible, but it was.  A couple of times I thought that I was hit with a drop of rain on my face, but it was just sweat pouring off my sunglasses.  Good times.

More importantly, I have to let this out.  The Maple Leafs were winning Game 7 of their first round series 4-2 with less than 4 minutes left in the game.  And then they gave up a goal.  And then they gave up another one.  And really, once that happened, did anybody think they were going to win in overtime?  Of course not.  But then, after knowing such things could happen, I went to the little league playoff game and watched our team get down by 9 runs with 2 innings left.  And you can only score 5 runs in each inning.  Darkest before dawn, right?  My favorite player lead off, got a hit, and worked his way around the bases - little league style.  Single, take second on the throw.  Stay on 2nd when the next batter hit to 3rd.  And then take third on a ball hit to second and then take home while the shortstop, second baseman, and baserunner end up in a pile around 2nd base.  But that was all.  No more comeback - game over.  Too bad. 

But given what happened in Vancouver two years ago, I think we can all be thankful there wasn't a riot.  If you recall, the Canucks lost to the Bruins in game 7 and then set their city on fire.  I'm thankful that this week's heartbreaking loss, even though the fan base generally does not maintain perspective, did not result in a riot.  Oh and the Leaf fans behaved well too. 

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Slow. Plodding. Painful. Miles.

Gawd is has been difficult getting back into running. And blogging for that matter. I did a slow painful 3 yesterday morning and got this awful ache in my right calf. This morning I did 2.5 and it was worse. I walked the whole way home, and found myself questioning my expensive new shoes, as if perhaps they are the cause of this new pain. It maybe its the 100 or so extra pounds I gained during my hiatus. Or maybe the birthday cake i ate last night. Or maybe just that my leg is still weak from the broken foot. It's only been two damn weeks after all.

Monday, May 13, 2013

I almost didn't

Just when I had you off my head
Your voice comes thrashing wildly through my quiet bed
You say you wanna try again
- John Mayer, Goodbye

Well it wasn't a running weekend. I had training all day Fri and Sat, and who wants to run on Mothers Day? Today almost got away from me too. I picked up pizza and wings on the way home from work and had settled in on the couch and given up on the idea of a run. But then I was bored and thinking about how there was nothing on TV and I just couldn't make myself study for my test on Thurs, and K and I were making plans to go to Cold Stone, and I had a revelation that I just needed to go for a damn run. So I got up and went out and it was still 90 degrees and I promised myself I cod walk as much as I wanted. About 3/4 miles in, as it was getting dark, I noticed a dark shape in the middle of the road. I froze, thinking it was a bobcat crouched to pounce. But no, it was a javelina. And he was eyeballing me and wouldn't move! So I slowly backed up and he kept taking steps towards me huffing and blowing real aggressive like. Then a car came up and had to stop for him and he still didn't move! I kept backing up and then crossed to the other side and he slowly walked out of the road. Sure enough, there were a couple of babies and mamas in the bushes that he was protecting. After I went by, they all crossed the road but he kept his eye on me and kept himself between me and them. It was quite chivalrous. Anyway, I then finished my 2 miles with some walk breaks and called it a night. And, no cold stone. All good stuff.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mother's Day 13

Years from now, they'll promise pleasure, pills and wine
Go on try them all, but make sure your mama knows you love her
-Dave Hause

Now A.C. Green, he love his mother
-Earvin "Magic" Johnson

Happy Mother's Day to all moms, but especially to mine.  A published author, bridge master, and all-around fun person to have around.  Thanks for everything.

And I did run to celebrate.  The schedule said to run 20 this weekend, and I was planning to do it yesterday, but it just didn't work.  So I ran today.  But early in the run I knew my heart wasn't in it.  I started thinking about exit strategies.  Like if I knew where Jeff Gillooly lives and if I could get him to kneecap me so I could go home.  Such are not the thoughts of a 20-mile run.  Anyway, I ran 6 slow miles and then one fast one to make it to 7 for the day.  When coupled with the 3 I ran earlier this week in Connecticut that makes 10 miles for the week.  Not really what you are supposed to do in the biggest week of prep for the marathon.  Oh well, I will adjust the schedule and figure it out.  Right now I'm at 238.5 for the year.

On my run I saw a yard the had a political sign for Dave Yelle halfway blocking a sign for John somebody.  How does this happen?  Are they running against each other and there is a domestic disagreement about who to support?  And while one person isn't looking, the other puts their sign in front of the other?  Or did they feel like two political signs would be too gaudy, but one wasn't enough.  One and one half signs is just right?  Either way, it really felt like Dave was yelling down John, which would be an amazing political strategy.  He could just yell whenever anyone else was talking at a debate and be like "I'm Dave Yelle, yelling is my thing".  I bet Rick Perry wished he had him around when he tried to count up the three cabinet positions he was planning to dissolve

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

I missed a million miles of fun

Of course you can't become
if you only say what you would've done
so I missed a million miles of fun
- Len, Steal My Sunshine

Well I'm back on the proverbial horse.  I had my appt last Tuesday and got permission to remove the boot.  The doctor said I could start back up running SLOWLY, and I was all hey, that's the only speed I got, so no problem.  But before I could run, I had to solve my shoe problem.  So I spent an hour in the running section of Sports Authorities having anxiety over which shoes to pick, and they are all so expensive!  I grilled the sales guy about his qualifications, and he insisted he knew a lot about feet because he was a former semi-pro ballroom dancer.  I didn't dive into that one.  He finally convinced me to order these Mizunos online that they didn't even carry in the store.  When I got home and researched them, I found out they weren't even a stability shoe, which I most definitely need.  So on Wednesday I went to an actual running store and tried on a bunch of shoes, and settled on a pair of Asic Kayanos.  They're a pretty cushiony and stable shoe, although they set me back quite a bit more than those bastard Sauconys.  I did a lot of reading on stability running shoes, and these Asics are near the top of almost every list (and Saucony isn't even on many lists).  I remember at the last running event I attended, where I watched my little sis do the RnR Phoenix, I was looking around at shoes and Asics were by far the most prevalent.  So, I'm hoping I found my perfect shoe. 

Long story short, I went out Wed and did two miles, and I will say it was pretty rough.  Lung burn and the whole deal.  I ran one mile and walked/ran a second.  Then Thursday I did the same thing.  I had pain in my right calf and pain in the muscles beneath my toes (never I knew I had muscles there).  I went out again on Sunday and did three, and again it was just really rough.  This evening I did 3 again, and for the first time I felt that little spring in my step when I started off.  I felt good, for just a little bit.  So it'coming back.  I don't remember having this much difficulty after my knee surgery though. Maybe it's that threshold of 43 that I crossed recently.  Getting older is a slippery damn slope. 

So April was pretty much a bust, but May is starting off ok. 

Sunday, May 5, 2013


“So many things are possible just as long as you don't know they're impossible.”
Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth

I'll be around; a few more miles to go
-The New Amsterdams

Seventeen today.  I set out to do eighteen and I could have, but I had a hard stop at noon (I use that phrase all the time no matter how hard my stop really is - I might be the boy who cried "hard stop") and I started a little bit late and ran a little bit slowly.  Who cares though?  Seventeen is the farthest I've ever run and while I did experience some dead leg - it was manageable.  I used both of the strategies I've developed - yelping in pain and walking.  Both are effective in their own way.  I also went back to my old shoes.  Not sure that I really understand what is going on, but I'll keep wearing the old shoes, keep stretching, and keep yelping in pain as necessary - sounds like a foolproof plan.

I know there is probably a low click through rate on these - but I highly recommend The New Amsterdams "Turn Out The Light".  This video should be an accepted treatment for high blood pressure - I don't think you can watch it without feeling a wave of calm.  Or maybe it's just me - it could be the Canadian experience which makes me appreciate canoes.  It is such a part of the culture there that I regularly was in conversations where the word "portage" was used.  And never by me.  Enjoy.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Forty Minutes of Tranquility

Forty minutes into this movie,
I'm about as bored as you, and you're asleep.
-Chris Wollard & The Ship Thieves

Yesterday.  3 miles.  Slowly.  211.5 for the year.

The run, much like the last paragraph, was short and boring.  But boring is better than painful.  Speaking of painful, I'm going to have to get up early tomorrow and run a lot.  I'll let you know how it goes.

The line quoted above is the beginning of "The Same To You" and it always makes me think of Ran Dumb Thoughts.  When we were younger, we would regularly rent movies.  Yep - rent, not stream.  And about 40 (or 4 minutes) into the VHS tape (that's right - VHS) he would be asleep.  Every time.  He's probably seen the first 5 minutes of every movie ever made.  One night he showed up with the director's cut of The Godfather - like 6 hours long.  I don't think he made it 6 minutes.  Maybe that's why I like this song so much.  Or maybe because Chris Wollard is really talented and all over this playlist as a member of Rumbleseat and Hot Water Music.  Or both.


Wednesday, May 1, 2013

A Tale of Three Pizzas

Once upon a time I could take anything, anything.
Always stepped in time, regardless of the beat
I moved my feet, I carried weight
What I could not do I faked
-Rise Against

Yesterday, I ran near Lake Michigan, my 2nd favorite of the Great Lakes.  That's right - I have a ranking - 1) Ontario, 2) Michigan, 3&4) Those other two and 5) Erie.  A quick 3.5 miles through downtown Chicago and a little waterfront.  It went really well.  I ran fast (for me) and felt good at the end of it.

So my trip to Chicago was good - I had a whole lot to accomplish for work, but outside of that I was hoping to see Alkaline Trio and Rise Against in their home city (not playing) and to eat some Chicago-style pizza.  The first night I'm there, a vendor invites me to dinner.  One of the guys had lived in Chicago and promised to take us to the place that started deep dish pizza.  Awesome.  Except that it was Pizzeria Uno.  And it was not good.  And I knew it wouldn't be good, but couldn't come up with a plan to escape when we stopped walking and he announced "here it is".  I should have faked an injury.  So then the second day for lunch there was a buffet that had hotel-catered deep dish.  And it was OK (better than Uno).  But then after my run, I went to Lou Malnati's - ate some amazing pizza, watched the Blackhawks (silently rooting against them), and salvaged the food portion of my trip.

I think (and by "I think", I mean "I know") that I may have once said something negative about Rise Against.  I was wrong.  I was grumpy and misinterpreted some (fairly obvious) sarcasm in one of their songs.  This band is the coolest.  They are in with "This Is Letting Go" and the lead singer Tim McIlrath is in with his cover of "For Fiona".  And one more.