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Was It a Self-Indulgent Run?

I thought I would do a Running Commentary Post. For one reason, I went running. As I freely admit, what I do is called running only by the most generous definition of the term. However, I was out on the sidewalk moving my feet and putting in effort. I feel I deserve some credit at least.

It was a pretty afternoon with bright sunlight and bare pavement. The temperature was less inviting, but I put on leggings, long sleeves, gloves, and a knitted headband. This would be fine. I set out with modest goals and high hopes of meeting them.

I had reckoned without the wind. Where did that come from? And did it have to be right in my face? Apparently it did, because it seemed to change direction almost every time I did. I don’t think I felt it at my back the entire run. I know this is not logical, but how do you explain it? We all know I do not run fast enough to create my own wind resistance.

The best I could do was to keep plodding along as best I could. I decided 15 minutes would be acceptable. It was more than a mile. Stop judging me! I told you in the first paragraph I run slow! My cool down walk was also shorter than usual, eight minutes instead of ten.

As I walked my cool down, I told myself I could feel good about getting out there at all. Then, being me, I questioned whether I was being self-indulgent or at least unambitious. Was I, in essence, giving myself one of those despised Participation Trophies? As I type this in now, I feel these questions are best left for Lame Post Friday, the proper home for half-baked philosophy.

In the meantime, I have made my Tuesday post on Tuesday. At the risk of being self-indulgent, I say, “Yay, me!”

Better Lame Than Never

I am pretty sure I used this title (too lazy to go back and look). I don’t even have a good excuse for not making my Lame Post Friday post on Friday. And I don’t have much to say now, either. But let’s see what I can come up with.

Our year round ghoul.

I put in a picture of Elliott Ghoul, because he said something as I typed in the previous paragraph. We put him in the window one Halloween, and I enjoyed him so much, I insisted he stay. We added the hat for Christmas, and you can see the reflection of Santa Claus on the window. Santa is still out there, but I think the hat is gone (again, too lazy to check).

Today promises to be a frigid cold day with wind chill and everything. Steven vows not to leave the house. It does not bode well for Mohawk Valley Adventures. Oh dear, will I be reduced to cleaning the house? SAY IT AIN’T SO!!!

Pretty!

Feeling blank of anything to say, I sought another picture. I settled on the crocuses, because many of us are longing for spring. However, I try not to wish too hard for what patience will bring me. I am a big believer in trying to enjoy Right Now. I am not always successful at it, but I think it would be a good idea if I was.

Will I enjoy today? I certainly intend to. I hope to write a blog post about it. My Saturday Post on Saturday? A little suspense adds interest to my day.

Is This Not a Lame Blog Post?

Hello and welcome to another Lame Post Friday post. Full disclosure: I am feeling particularly lame and brain dead this evening. However, I have had enough late posts lately, and there is no guarantee I will be any less brain dead in the morning.

I think I am finally going to have a weekend of NOT running around doing stuff. Of course a lot of the stuff I do is fun, or supposed to be (after all, everything can’t live up to expectations). It is supposed to be dangerously cold tomorrow, and we plan to spend the day at home not getting frost bite.

Hmmm…. It seems I plan a negative weekend: not running around, not getting frost bite. I wonder what else I will not do. There is a good chance I will not clean my house. I will probably not go running, because, you know, frost bite. I feel certain I will not fight with my husband, because I almost never do. I will not stream any videos, because I do not know how.

Those are things I might have been reasonably expected to do. Now I am thinking I should mention a few silly things. I will not enter a beauty pageant. I will not try to get a suntan.

I will not make any more foolish blog posts? No promises.

Was I Chilling Out?

I’m back to my old tricks of late, foolish posts, but, as a co-worker likes to say, you’ll have that. At least, with this blog you will. I make no apologies but mention it with perhaps a bit of sheepishness. I intend to bill this as a Tired Tuesday Post, because I was in fact too tired to attempt event anything foolish.

Yesterday was the coldest day so far this winter. How the times have changed! I remember when Steve and I lived in the North Country (Norwood, NY to be exact). We would have stretches of days when the temperatures did not make it above zero. Oh, how happy we were when we got a heat wave of 2 degrees, and when we got to double digits — woohoo! And when we had to or wanted to leave the house (apartment), we damn well did and made no bones about it.

So much for the trip down memory lane. As the cliche goes, that was then and this is now. My point in bringing it up is that I blame yesterday’s tiredness on being cold all day long. My place of employment is not well insulated, and there is are large doors that open and close at irregular intervals. YES, I am happy I have a job! Please don’t start with the Just-Be-Thankful-Thats. You know who you are, and I find it a singularly annoying thing to hear.

Anyways, I have blathered on for at least 200 words (over 250 by the time I get to the end of this paragraph). Perhaps I should apologize about the dull content of the post. Bitching about winter weather in Central New York. How singularly unoriginal. I’ll blame it on brain freeze.

Rocked the Run, Not the Post

I know from reading my Facebook “On This Day” that I can rock down to 10 degrees. At least, I read that I once posted, “Turns out I can rock down to 10 degrees.” I would not post such a thing if I had not in fact rocked 10 degrees on a recent run. I thought about that as I shuffled through yet another cold run.

You must not judge me for shuffling. In the best of conditions my middle-aged shuffle is the best pace for my middle-aged chest, even with the best of sports bras (do NOT say “TMI!”). When there is ice on the road, the shuffle is an important safety precaution.

Today was one of those runs where, when I started out, I thought it was too cold, a 20 minute run would suffice. But I ran for 34 minutes. Additionally, I do not require myself to run hills on bad roads (I recently wiped out walking up an icy sidewalk). However, I ran up two minor hills. Best of all, I ran by four signs that said “Do Not Enter” and entered.

Only there was snow.

This is an earlier picture of one of my “Do Not Enter” signs. I like to feel like a rebel. I know, I know, they mean cars not middle-aged shufflers. Let me enjoy my small triumphs.

The run started to feel pretty OK as I went. Of course I long for bare roads and warmer temperatures, but one must make do. I’m afraid I must make do with a kind of a dull blog post as well. It was not that exciting of a run. I felt pleased with myself as I ran uphill, as it became increasingly clear that I was going to run for a decent length of time, and as I came across another “Do Not Enter” sign to thwart.

But I cannot recall any specific thoughts or moments to make this a true Running Commentary Post. Still, it is a post, and one I am not typing in at 5 or 6 o’clock Monday morning, I’ll call that a win. Happy Sunday, everyone.

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.

At least I Put a Title on This One

I just realized I never put a title on yesterday’s post. What was that all about? I was trying to think of one then took a break to add categories and tags, and apparently I just forgot. What a silly head.

Regarding my vow to write better blog posts, I am not doing so well. I started to write something while at work but left the notebook it was in at work.

I put my cell phone in my pocket while I walked home, thinking I could get some snowy pictures for a Pedestrian Post. Unfortunately, it was a little too snowy. We had some semblance of a blizzard (nothing too bad for Central New York). The wind blew sharp, cold flakes into my face and eyes (note to self: wear a scarf) (even if it didn’t help so much when I was running). Additionally, I was afraid all that snow would get my phone wet.

So I guess this is another dull little post about the difficulties of daily blogging. But I am determined to do better. I have had these stretches before: one foolish post after another. Then I do better. I can and shall do better.

In the meantime, I am going to call this a Tired Tuesday Post and drive on. I hope my local readers (and anyone else who needs to) is staying warm.

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.

Cold Run! Warm Post?

I have not done a Saturday Running Commentary Post in a while, although I usually do run on Saturday. I thought I would attempt one today.

I have been watching the weather with some measure of attention (regular readers know I rarely pay much attention to anything) so knew it was likely to be cold. Accordingly, I put on long sleeves and leggings. I found an extra warm hat and mittens in the closet (which I recently cleaned, so that wasn’t too hard). I found my one pair of actual mittens, which I accidentally stole from my sister Diane some years ago, because I figured mere gloves would not be sufficient. I debated wearing a sweatshirt for the run and something warmer for the cool-down walk, but decided my road-guard vest would add another layer. I clicked “Outdoor Run” on my Garmin and waited for it to stop saying, “Wait” (I have not completely figured out this Garmin thing yet).

Off I went and immediately noticed I had forgotten my mittens. I hate stopping a run so pulled my sleeves down over my hands and drove one. It was not long before I regretted leaving the sweatshirt and not putting on a scarf to cover my face. It is a sad truth that the Mohawk Valley is one of those places where at certain times during the year, the air makes your face hurt. Never mind, Cindy, just keep running.

And run I did. Not very far, not very fast, but I was out there trying! I seriously considered running up the hill to Herkimer College. First I turned up Maple Grove (oh dear, is that what that street is called? I don’t know how to Google that) and turned onto Pine (I’m purely guessing here), where there was a short but fairly steep section. This was going pretty well, although my body was not warming up at all.

By the time I had turned a corner and was headed towards Lou Ambers Drive, still debating about the hill to the college or some smaller hills in the residential area I call “the suburbs” in my head. Steven had told me there was little wind, but he was mistaken. Damn it was cold! How long was I going to run, anyways? I did not have to do a super long run in this cold, did I? Then it occurred to me: it is windier at the tops of hills. I turned down Lou Amber Drive and headed back to the village proper.

Oh, this was much better. My body felt… not warm, but not as freezing cold. That continued on and off for the rest of the run, as the wind picked up and died down according to its own caprice. Lately I have been running just to keep in the game, not to build up or meet lofty goals. There is plenty of time for that after I register for the Boilermaker 15K. What, did I say I was never going to run the Boilermaker again? Quite possibly I did. Was it a lie? When I do it, it is called fiction.

I see I am over 500 words. That is the beauty of Running Commentary Posts. Before I know it, I have gone a long way. I wish the runs themselves were like that, but you can’t have everything. Now I must get ready for the rest of my Saturday. My friend Kim messaged me wondering if we were to continue our, as she puts it, reign of terror in the Mohawk Valley. I’m up for that. First a little house cleaning? Let’s not go crazy over here! Happy Saturday, everyone.

Back on the Running Wagon

I fell off the running wagon this week.  Judge me if you must, but I had my reasons.  OK, there were no reasons and if there was they were probably a stupid reasons.  Never mind that.  I ran this morning, and it felt pretty darn good.

Yesterday I counted shoveling the driveway as my exercise.  I thought a half hour of walking back and forth carrying shovelfuls of snow was exertful enough (what do you mean, “exertful” is not a word, computer? Damn!).  In fact, I tried to take a walk later but only made it for 15 minutes, because my body was tired.  But that was then, this is now, and this morning, I decided to try a run.

It was almost 8:30 when I set out, because I had eaten around 7:20 (I checked my watch, knowing I wanted to wait an hour after eating).  It was only a banana with peanut butter and raisins, but I like to give myself every advantage.  It was below 30 degrees, so I wore leggings and long sleeves.  I added my road guard vest, because it made another layer and because I knew I would be running in the road.  Also, it gives me a pocket for my tissues.

There is more traffic than I like on a Saturday morning, but not as bad as weekday mornings or any afternoons.  I got to German Street and took my chances.  I had an idea to run up the hill by Valley Health.  As I ran, I rethought that plan.  I hadn’t run since last Sunday, I reminded myself.  Running at all was good.  I didn’t need to do hills yet.  I had spent a little time earlier in the week looking at a calendar and over-thinking my training plans vis-a-vis the Boilermaker 15K in July.  I should be fine, as long as I keep at it.  Then again, it is a good idea to be better than fine, because, as we all know, shit happens.

My last run was 25 minutes.  After taking too many days off, I did not think I would increase my time by the recommended 10 percent.  In fact, if I only did 20 minutes, I could still be in fine shape by July.  Well, just keep going, I thought.  See what happens.

It was cold.  My butt was cold.  My legs were cold.  My hands were cold.  But I kept going.  After a while my head got hot.  Fancy that!  I am not usually a hot-head.  I rounded the V corner at the high school and turned down Marion Street. I was tired.  After a while, I noticed I was running at a faster rate than my usual middle-aged shuffle.  I could slow down!  Then I wouldn’t feel so bad.  My body didn’t want to slow down.  How weird was that?  Eventually  I managed it, and it helped.

Almost 20 minutes into the run, I started to feel good.  Damn!  I could go 25 minutes!  I could go 28!  This was awesome!  I ended up running 25, to equal my last time.  After all, I didn’t want to be racked up for the rest of the day.  I felt pretty wonderful during my cool-down walk (the irony is not lost on me of having a “cool down” at 28 degrees Fahrenheit).  As it happened, I did spend a good portion of this day feeling tired. However, that might be due to the Sudafed I took for my stuffy sinuses.  No matter.  I ran, and now I’ve blogged (silly verb, that).  Happy Saturday, everyone!