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Category Archives: running commentary

Short Run, Tired Post

My plan was to go for a run so I could make a Running Commentary Post. I accomplished the first part of my plan. Can I manage the second?

My back was feeling pretty sore at work, and my attitude was not in very good shape either. I wondered about taking a walk instead, possibly with my Tablet to get more spring pictures. For one reason, it might improve my disposition. However, I opted for the run.

I put in a load of laundry, my favorite multi-task. Really my only multi-task, since most of the time I can barely task. It was a beautiful warm, sunny day. No question I could run in shorts and short sleeves. This would be great!

It was not great. My body did not want to run. I did my usual trick of telling myself I only had to keep it up for a short time. Twenty minutes, I thought. Fifteen in a pinch. One mile. At the rate I was running, I figured a mile would take me fifteen minutes.

As it happened, I did a mile in barely under 14 minutes. I continued to run till I reached 20 minutes. It never got fun, but it always feels somewhat good to persevere.

I’m afraid I have not persevered to the extent of writing a good blog post. You should hear some of the narration in my head as I go! Unfortunately I cannot remember any if it now. Of course, with that being the case, we’ll never know if it was really good narration. It could have been utter nonsense and I am flattering myself. I shall not waste any energy wondering.

In the meantime, I am over 250 words. I call that more than respectable for a Tired Tuesday Post. I hope to see you all again on Wuss-out Wednesday.

Mid-Week Run, Tired Post

I thought it was supposed to be raining with dropping temperatures this afternoon. When I left work (at my new job, by the way), it had rained but was not doing so currently. Additionally, it was warm. It felt almost summery.

Earlier in the day, I had repented not running Monday and Tuesday. By the time I got home, I realized I might have a chance to redeem myself. It was cloudy and threatening, but MAYBE I could get a run in. And I could write a blog post about it, instead of having a Wuss-out Wednesday!

I happily dressed in shorts and short sleeves. I put a sweatshirt on the porch for my cool-down walk but was not sure I needed it. I set out with high hopes.

For the first few blocks, it was not at all bad. I wasn’t too tired to run! This was great! I turned left onto German Street, keeping on the sidewalk, because afternoon traffic in Herkimer can be heavy.

A mere seven or so minutes into the run (I looked at my Garmin but do not remember the exact time), I felt tired. Just persevere, I told myself. I am up to 45 minutes on my weekend runs. I certainly did not have to go that far today. Still, 15 minutes might be a trifle paltry.

I settled on half of my longest time. 22 1/2 minutes. I ended up going just over 23. It did not start to rain. Score! I petted one nice dog along the way. I felt quite pleased with myself.

Right now I feel more tired than pleased. I’m not sure it was all that great of a run, and as usual, I question the quality of my blog post. However, also as usual, I trust the process. I ran. I posted. Happy Wednesday, everyone!

I Thunked, But I Ran

I thought I would make a Running Commentary Post in lieu of my usual Tired Tuesday. For one reason, I was determined to run. All last week I came home feeling too tired and frustrated, mostly frustrated. Intellectually, I knew if I ran I would feel better. Physically, I could not accept the knowledge.

So I ran. Do I feel better than if I had not? I suppose I do.

The run did not start out feeling good. Oh what a difference eight hours of work make! I thunked along like the overweight middle-aged lump that I am. My autocorrect does not think “thunked” is a word, but there I must differ.

At least it was a beautiful warm day. That caused a few problems, as I had to avoid pedestrians, bicyclists, and others. I tried to stay mindful of social distancing.

One other runner passed me, toward the end of my run. I could hear footsteps approaching me from behind, moving a lot faster than I was. This young kid passed me, loping along like a gazelle. He turned to give me a friendly grin and wave as he passed, which I was happy to return.

I did not run very far, and I never run very fast. But I was glad I ran. I’m only sorry that this is not much of a blog post. As I run, I narrate in my head. It usually sounds pretty good to me at the time, but when I get to the Tablet and start posting, I can’t quite make the translation.

No matter. I ran, I posted (or rather, I will have posted, for the more didactic among you) (you know who you are). Sometimes we must be content with the process.

Sunday Run

I went for a run this morning — one of my few useful acts of the day — so I thought I might attempt a Running Commentary Post in lieu of my usual Wrist to Forehead Sunday. Full disclosure: I pretty much feel like swooning, dramatically posed with the back of one wrist to my forehead, onto a handy chaise lounge. Note to self: obtain a chaise lounge for just such an emergency.

Where was I? Ah yes, about to write about my run. The lovely spring-like weather did not last. However, I am no stranger to running in the cold. I got ready and off I went.

Saturday when I ran, I headed toward Valley Health and ran that hill. Today I turned towards Main Street. Mind you, I was disinclined to run either hills or for very long. But I convinced myself to just go.

I made it up part of the Main Street hill just beyond the Road Closed sign. I have mentioned before how I believe these signs refer to vehicular traffic and not middle-aged ladies shuffling along with various amounts of huffing and puffing.

Soon I was heading back down Steuben Road and stuck to the relatively flat village roads for the rest of the run.

My only question was how long the run was going to be. Saturday’s run was 37 minutes. On Saturday I could not at first remember if I had gone 30 or 33 minutes last week. Note to self: find Running Journal and get back to writing in it. Then I remembered I had gone 34, slightly more than the recommended 10 percent increase. Hence, 37 minutes on Saturday.

After some minutes of wondering, it was soon clear I would do 37 minutes again today. I spent a lot of the run looking at my Garmin and counting how many minutes were left. I make bargains with myself of how long I will wait before looking, then I look anyways.

In other words, it was not the best, most entertaining run. Nor, I fear, is this the most entertaining blog post. I suppose you’ll have that. On the other hand, it is Sunday night. Monday looms menacingly. I hope will not be too monstrous.

I Go Running

I went running today, and I was kind of proud of myself, because I have been having a hard time getting back into weekday runs. It was not a great run, weekday runs rarely are, but it was a good run. I thought in lieu of my usual Tired Tuesday Post, I would attempt a Running Commentary.

I walked to work yesterday and today. I try to do that most of the time, so that the days I don’t run, at least I get some exercise. Monday was cold, but today felt like spring. Actually, today the walk home kind of annoyed me, because the jacket that felt good in the a.m. was way to warm for the p.m. I may have to start shivering in the a.m.

I wore shorts and short sleeves, which I found pretty awesome. I ran on a few sidewalks, where they were mostly bare and dry. I did not run very fast. I did not run very far, although I went longer than the 20 minutes I require of myself on these Just-To-Keep-My-Feet-In Runs.

I passed a few pedestrians. I asked a man pulling a wagon and a woman pushing a stroller for a ride. They laughed but turned me down. I complimented a lady on her cute little dog. I would love to get another dog, but I don’t think I will be able to.

I just noticed I began every paragraph in this post with “I.” How egotistical of me. Then again, this is a personal blog. I could go back and edit, but Tired Tuesday is starting to kick in. I will try to keep my ego in check for Wuss-Out Wednesday. As always, I hope you’ll tune in.

Some Spring in my Step

It was a glorious day that felt like spring. Of course, I spent most it inside, wondering if the sun was living up to its promise, as it so rarely does this time of year. However, when the work day ended and I stepped outside, I was elated. It was warm! It felt good! I was totally going to go running!

Many days when I have worked all day, I talk myself right out of it, and Wednesday seemed for a moment to be going that way. I’m tired! I spent all day running around! The snowbanks are still too high; sidewalks are way too messy! Oh hell, no. Those arguments were not going to work.

I did heed the argument about the sidewalks and ran in the road. I wore my road guard vest, because safety first. Additionally, I can put tissues or a handkerchief in the zipper pocket. My sinuses are ever a problem. Of course I wore leggings and long sleeves, but I opted for a knitted headband instead of a hat, and I did not wear gloves. I was so happy to step outside and not feel freezingly cold. This was going to be great!

And it was, kind of. I have not been running after a day’s work in a while. It certainly feels different from a run on a weekend morning. My legs were soon complaining. I ignored them. I also seemed to be running very slowly. I declined to worry about it.

The real problem was all the snow. The snowbanks encroached on the road, and the puddles from their melting made it even worse. I did not encounter much ice, though, so that was good. I tried to stay on less busy streets, but I still encountered some traffic. I made sure to give the thank-you wave to everybody who slowed down and/or moved over.

I had been thinking that this was the sort of day when, back in my misspent youth, I might have been out on a porch with friends and beer. Of course it was not really warm enough for such activities, but we never let that stop us. I saw several people out running or walking. Then, closer to home, I saw a few people on a porch, their kids playing in the snow, and a fellow I know standing in the driveway with what looked like a beer in is hand. Awesome!

“It’s a great day for a porch party!” I yelled.

“It’s a great day for a run!” the guy on the porch said.

“It sure is!”

And it sure was, snow and puddles notwithstanding. I felt so happy I had run, even it was not too far and not too fast. As I type this, winter has naturally returned to the Mohawk Valley. However, I cling to the promise of yesterday. Spring is coming! Come on, Spring!

Cold Sunday Run

I did go running this morning, and oh was it ever cold! I thought I would make a Sunday Running Commentary Post to make it worth my while.

I have not been running during the week lately, which is very bad of me. I walked to and from work three days this past week, but that is only eleven or twelve minutes each way (yes, I look at my watch and check). Well, one does what one can. I strive always for improvement. Hence, running both weekend days and beginning the week with hope.

My thermostat said the outdoor temperature was 17, which is practically 20, so I hoped for the best. At least I found both mittens. They are really good mittens, which I accidentally stole from my sister Diane some years ago.

As it turned out, my hands were my only warm parts. And they got cold when I took off the mittens to blow my nose, which I obvious had to do a lot. Why oh why, did I have to be running into the wind? Why oh why did the wind have to change direction every time I did?

I had told myself I only had to run for 15 minutes. I ran for 20 on Saturday. There is no harm in doing short runs when I have not been running much. I have plenty of time to build up for this year’s Boilermaker 15K.

The cold was really my only problem. My legs, my back, my breathing all felt fine. I was quite discouraged by the weather, because I could not enjoy the run very much. At least the roads were mostly bare.

I kept it up for 18 minutes, which I felt was pretty good. I see this blog post is approaching 300 words, which also ought to feel pretty good. Unfortunately I fear they have been dull words, but I can’t seem to help that. Maybe the cold froze my brain. On the other hand, I can always count this as a Wrist to Forehead Sunday. I hope to see you all again on Monday.

Short Run, Sunday Post

I have not gone running for two weeks. At my age, that is far too long. This morning, despite the cold, I ran. So how about a Running Commentary Post in lieu of my usual Wrist to Forehead Sunday? It won’t be a very long post, because it was not a very long run. What do you want from an overweight, middle-aged lady?

I had not planned on running. The roads are still covered with snow and ice, which is what deterred me all last week (it was my own laziness the week before). And it was frigid cold. Double digits, but barely. It was 11 degrees according to my thermostat, which often reads warmer than the actual outdoor temperature. I figured after two weeks it would be like starting all over anyways, so why not wait a few more days?

As the morning wore on, however, I damn well felt like it. I was, I realized, sick of not running. So I got into running clothes and went. In addition to leggings, long sleeves, a hat and gloves, I put a scarf around my neck and wore a zip-up sweatshirt.

Of course the scarf was not the miracle I was hoping for. My neck was warm, but I could not get it to properly cover my cheeks. Yes, it was face-hurting cold. Never mind, I told myself. Just go for 15 minutes. 15 minutes. Nobody could ask for more in this cold. Oh, well, I guess somebody could.

I started out running in the road but switched to the sidewalk on German Street, which usually has more traffic. The sidewalks were snow-covered rather than icy. This was excellent, I told myself. Look how much effort it takes to run in the snow. I would burn all kind of calories!

It did not take long for that to get old, and I switched back to the road when I turned down a side street. I went back and forth between sidewalk and road, snowy and bare, as the opportunity offered. Other than my face and my hands, I didn’t feel too bad. It was worse for my hands when I would take off my gloves to pull a tissue out of my pocket and blow my nose. Sometimes, I pulled my fingers into the palms of the gloves and made fists. That’s an old army trick to get warm.

I ended up running 16 minutes, 17 seconds, 1.22 miles, according to my Garmin. I tracked my cool down walk with the Garmin, too: 9 minutes, 46 seconds, .46 miles. I walked through more effort-inducing snow on the cool down. It felt pretty good, and my recovery beverage of chocolate mild tasted really good.

For the rest of tne day, I proceeded to eat like the huge honking hogger I am, thus negating the calorie-burning benefits of the run, but let us not dwell on such negativity. I ran. I wrote a blog post. It is a good Sunday.

Without Hoopla or Help

So I did a thing last Sunday.  I ran 9.31 miles.  Yes, it was my Virtual Boilermaker 15K, and I pretty much backed into it.

I ran for one hour one minute on Saturday.  I had a bad headache, which running seemed to help.  Unfortunately, I started to get nauseous.  Now, I have the idea that I can run pretty much as long as I make up my mind to.  Not so on Saturday.  Quite abruptly, I felt, “No.”  I don’t know if it was from my mind or my body, but I stopped running.  I walked home, wanting nothing more than to stay perfectly still, which I was eventually able to do.

Still, I think an hour is a pretty good run, and I had included a few hills, so I was not entirely dissatisfied with myself.  Sunday I thought I would try for seven miles, however long that took me.  Then I would be in good shape for the Mini-Maker at Copper City Brewing in Rome on Sept. 13.

For a hill, I went out Main Street.  Part of the road is closed to traffic, but they don’t say anything about overweight, middle-aged runners, so I feel free.  It is steep and long-ish, and if I go all the way out Highland, I can come down Steuben Hill.  Sometimes I go up Steuben and down Highland, but I prefer to go up where it is steeper and down the more gradual slope.  Just my preference.

The run was going pretty well.  My first mile was almost 15 minutes, which I was not pleased about, but I told myself not to worry, just keep going.

It was sometime after the second mile that I began to toy with the idea of going for the 15K.  I had a bottle of water in my hand.  I could re-fill it at the spring.  That was almost as good as having water stations. I had not planned my entire route, but I could just keep going till Map My Run told me nine miles.  Then I could keep going till it was 9.3.  I should be able to look at my phone (strapped to my upper arm) enough to ascertain that.  I just couldn’t finish on a sprint, as I like to do.

The phrase occurred to me, “without hoopla or help.”  That’s it, I thought.  Without hoopla or help, I will run my 15K.  It kind of went against the grain, because one of my mottoes of life is “I get by with a little help from my friends.”  In this case, however, I decided to do something by myself, for myself, to prove I could do it.  I was running through some fairly level streets in Herkimer, NY while I thought this.  I tried to keep up my pace yet told myself that it did not matter how long it took me, as long as I went the distance.  Then I started thinking about hills.  I had gone up a big hill.  I did not need to do any more.  Did I?

The fact is, Herkimer is not that large, especially if I did not want to cross Route 5, which I did not.  Additionally, I wanted to be at least an hour into my run before I finished my bottle of water and stopped by the spring.  All things considered, I decided my best bet would be to go up the kick-buttest hill in the residential area behind Valley Health.  I suppose I could have gone up the hill to Herkimer College, but I felt more comfortable in the other area.

It was not too awful getting up that long hill, and I was slowly racking up the miles.  I was just over an hour when I refilled my water.  Now where to run?  I thought of a route that would bring me by my beloved Historic Four Corners.  I’ll do that!  Then I added in a few more turns and streets, because I needed to run longer.  Soon I was wishing I had fully charged my phone, because it started making a noise which I was afraid meant low battery.  Please, phone, please, last for me!   At last I was at nine miles!  I was headed down Prospect Street, almost at Bellinger Avenue (not to be confused with Bellinger Street).  I could enter where it said Do Not Enter!  My favorite!

As I headed up my own street, I twisted my arm enough to see my phone.  Map My Run, don’t fail me now!  It did not.  I stopped running when it said 9.31 miles.  Yay!  I was right across from a neighbor sitting on his front stoop, one I often greet as I run by.

“I just ran my Virtual Boilermaker 15K!” I told him.

“Good for you,” he said.

And I just finished my blog post about it.  Phew!  I guess I can accomplish anything I set my mind to.

 

Comedy on the Run

To begin with,  it was not a blister on the bottom of my foot,  it was a sliver.  Apparently I cannot tell the difference without closer examination.   In my defense, it started hurting after a run, not after I had been walking around barefoot or at work.  Metal splinters are an occupational hazard at my place of employment, and, yes, they can find their way into one’s shoes.  But I discovered the splinter this morning, and my purpose now is to write more about yesterday’s run.

Regular readers know I am a friendly sort, and I love to call out greetings to passers-by.  In pre-Covid times, I would stop and pet dogs, but now I am more aware of social distances.

As I ran by the apartment building at the end of my street, I called hello to a couple sitting outside, and they returned the greeting.  As I ran by Trinity Lutheran Church, I saw a lady I knew.  She called out encouragement and I thanked her.  After that, I saw few people till I encountered a little girl riding a bike in the residential area behind Valley Health.  I made my usual joke.

“That’s what I need!  A set of wheels!”

She smiled politely, humoring the crazy old lady.

Going up the long hill, a pick-up truck passed me and pulled into a driveway.  A young man was getting out as I reached it.

“I almost jumped into the back of that truck!” I yelled.  He laughed.

As I mentioned yesterday, it was not as difficult getting to the top of the hill as in previous runs.  Dare I hope I am getting into shape (I mean a shape other than round and puffy)?  Just after I crested the hill, I saw a lady sitting on her front stoop with a stroller next to her.  A very cute dog started barking at me from the stroller.

“Oh, lady,” I said, “Would you push me home in that stroller?”

She laughed, and the dog continued to bark.  Yes, it is Comedy on the Run by Mohawk Valley Girl.  Hey, that is not a bad title.  Or do I flatter myself?