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Too Much Detail on a Tired Tuesday Run?

I have this recurring dream where I am trying to get somewhere and my legs won’t work properly.  I can’t pick up my feet, I can’t move forward, it’s simply dreadful.  I pretty much felt this way at work today, and I worried tonight’s run would be more of the same.  However, I have not been running since July and I was determined to begin again.

I made a bargain with myself that I would only run for 20 minutes.  I could hang for 20 minutes.  This would work.  Of course it was a rigamarole getting ready to run.  I wanted to put in a load of laundry while I ran, including the pants I had worn to work today.  Since I had gotten sweaty at work, I took advantage of this.  I stayed naked while I filled the basket with laundry, then put on my running clothes (sorry if that gave you an unfortunate mental image) (then again, what are you doing picturing me naked?  Shame on you, you dirty-minded thing, you!).

Of course I was still sweaty.  I put powder on my upper body, but my second sports bra  still rolled up as I put it on and I couldn’t reach the back to unroll it.  I hate when that happens!  I got it, though, because, like I said, I was determined.  If this is too much detail, tough.  I calls it like I sees it.  I almost got out the door before I realized I had not thrown the laundry in.  Back up the stairs to retrieve the basket, then down to the basement.  I figured it could count as my warm-up.

Usually when I run, I make a left at the end of my driveway and head to German Street.  If I have not been running in a while, I head to Caroline Street, then go up and down the streets, working my way back home.  I decided to mix things up, so turned right and headed towards Meyers Park.  I even crossed the street and ran down the opposite side from my house.  The sun came out from behind a cloud, showing me that I had not picked the shadier side of the street. No matter.   It was my first run of beginning again, and I was going to persevere.

Persevere was what I had to do, because I never hit the I Can Rock This stage.  I won’t say that every step was an effort, but a goodly number of them were.  I tried to distract myself by looking around.  Mostly I noticed other people’s porches and wished I was sitting on a nice porch, perhaps enjoying a beverage.  I had told a work friend that I might reward myself with a glass of wine after my run.  Suddenly I remembered… chocolate milk!  When I was training for the Boilermaker 15K, I got in the habit of re-hydrating with chocolate milk.  I read somewhere that it is an excellent recovery drink.  I must say I enjoy it quite a bit.  I knew there was milk and chocolate in my refrigerator.  That thought sustained me for the rest of the run.

I ended up running for 22 minutes.  I felt pleased with myself that I had gone at least a little over 20, especially since the devil on my shoulder had been whispering that 15 would be just as good.  The cool shower felt wonderful, and the chocolate milk was heaven.  I probably won’t run again tomorrow, because I have rehearsal for The Tempest (no, that is not over yet, and I will no doubt write more blog posts about it), but I hope to run on Thursday.  Sooner or later, I must hit that I Can Rock This stage.

 

Pedestrian Post with Pictures

Steven and I decided to take a little stroll after dinner, so I brought along my Tablet to take a few pictures.  It was a lovely afternoon for a stroll.  After stopping to chat with  neighbor, I saw some flowers I wanted to snap.

This is an apartment building that used to be a school.

Hmm… I guess that one did not come out very clearly, but I liked the purple flowers.

Maybe I’ll go back after dark and try to get a picture of these lit up.

Steven noticed some solar lights and wondered if ours still work.  We did not put them out this year.  It’s kind of a rebuilding year for our lawn; we have not done much with it except get the nice young man who lives across the street to mow it for us.

Steven thinks this would make a delightful movie/opera house.

Eventually we turned down Main Street, and I suggested I take a picture of this building, which we have long admired.  The “for sale” sign that I had noticed there previously was gone.  I wondered if somebody had bought it or if they were just doing the trick of taking the sign down for a while so when they put it back up folks will think it is a new listing.

I love the color; the picture does not fully do it justice.

Continuing down the street, we saw a building that had seen better days, but there was one lovely flower in front of it, so I took its picture.  Soon we were approaching the Historic Four Corners, which regular readers may recall is a favorite spot of mine.

I wrote a blog post about this cemetery once, a long time ago.

This is the Herkimer Reformed Church.   I love the old gravestones.  Next I wanted a shot of the Suiter House, home of the Herkimer County Historical Society.

It’s even more interesting inside.

The house was built by Dr. A. Walter Suiter, who played a pivotal role in the trials of Chester Gillette and Roxalana Druse, two famous historical murderers of the area.  Steven played Dr. Suiter in the play Roxy, presented by the Historical Society at Ilion Little Theatre in 2015 (I played Roxy.  Perhaps you read a few of my blog posts about it).

Across the street is the Herkimer County Courthouse, where Chester Gillette and Roxalana Druse were tried for their respective murders.

Still a magnificent-looking building.

Of course I had to take a picture of the 1834 Jail, which housed both Gillette and Druse.

Who put that tree in the way!

Steven suggested I take a picture of him on the steps.

“Try to look like Dr. Suiter,” I suggested.

“In my party shorts with my Mr. Incredible t-shirt,” he said, as if he thought that was a problem.  He just smiled handsomely instead.

“Romeo, Romeo, wherefore are thou…” Oh, wait. Wrong play.

Continuing down Main Street, I took a picture of Christ Episcopal Church.

Another handsome, historical building.

We cut though the little park next to Basloe Library (another of my favorite places), and I got a picture of some nice flowers.

I did not read the NOTICE on the building. I hope it did not say not to take pictures of the flowers.

After that, I thought I had taken enough pictures, so we continued our walk back home.  Now I see I am over 550 words and I have successfully avoided having another Wrist to Forehead Sunday post.  I say, not a bad ending to the weekend.

 

Last Long Run Before Sunday

It may be time for this blog to become All Boilermaker All The Time.  I went for my last long run before the big race.  The big race, for anybody just tuning in, is the Utica Boilermaker Road Race, the premier 15K race in the country (I say it with confidence, although I confess I have not researched 15K races), which takes place this Sunday, July 9, 2017.  There is also a 5K on Sunday, a 3-mile walk on Saturday, an Expo Friday and Saturday, and many other events and attractions.  I know I’m not mentioning everything; after all, this blog is mostly about ME (I say it with no apology for my egotism) (although I confess to having a good laugh at myself).

Where was I?  Ah yes, about to do a Running Commentary post about my last long run till Sunday (hey, is that a good title for the post, or is it too obvious?).

It was excellent running weather: not too hot, not too humid, sunny and pretty.  As I ran, I felt the sun was perhaps brighter and hotter than my own personal ideal, but running in the shade was fine.  I decided to run in the residential area behind Valley Health, what I refer to as “the suburbs.”  This took me up the hill by Valley Health as a kind of a warm-up hill, and I knew I would find a long, challenging hill as I went.

As I ran toward Valley Health, along German Street which gradually slopes upward, I realized I did not want to run any hills.  My body felt like it could keep going perfecly well on level ground but would be utterly defeated by gravity if I tried to push it.  Well, naturally on my Last Long Run Before The Boilermaker, I was inclined to push it.  I remembered of what I thought on a recent run: running hills does not become easier for me; I merely learn to keep going longer while it sucks.  I wondered if that was strictly true. Most probably it sucks less as I go.  Today I tried a new tack:  I told myself that going up hills was a psychological trick;  I just had to stop NOTICING how much it sucked.  This is an extension of a trick I heard about in the army:  just look at your feet and shuffle up that hill.

I took a wrong turn and ran down a perfectly level street that turned at a right angle then ended in a cul-de-sac.  Then I found the correct corner, when down a small hill then up, up, up.  I passed a lady walking down and said good morning.

“Boilermaker!” I added, fists in the air.  “Three days and a wake-up!”

“There you go!” she encouraged.  “Good luck!”

A short while later, I saw a fellow runner, headed down the hill.

“Boilermaker!” I called to her.  “We got this!”   She laughed.

I passed a few other walkers, including a very nice couple who let me pet their dog.  Yes, I stopped running long enough to pet the dog.  I like to pet a dog.

I ran for an hour and one minute, which is how long I ran yesterday.  In training for previous Boilermakers, I have been up to an hour and a half.  However, I feel an hour is good.  I tell myself, if you can run for an hour, you can run for two; just don’t stop.  I plan shorter runs tomorrow and Friday, and a couple of long walks on Saturday.  And in between, I hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!  Boilermaker, here I come!

 

Fun at the Waterfront

I believe I mentioned Steven and I were visited by our good friend Tracy in the last few days.  We began our delightful visit with a trip to the Waterfront Grille at Gems Along the Mohawk  in Herkimer, NY.  It is one of my favorite Sunday afternoon things to do (and one I rarely get to indulge in), to sit at the bar and order drinks and appetizers.  We were happy to find seats at the bar.  Steven and I ordered some Chardonnay, but Tracy needed to put a little more thought into her drink order.  She is not as huge a wine-o-phile (oenophile, but I mispronounce that word) as I am.

Two of my favorite people, yes.

Here is a shot of Steven and Tracy enjoying themselves.  I was enjoying myself, too.  For one reason, the bartender, Meghan, asked me how my blog was going.  She remembered me and that I wrote a blog!  I felt famous.

Our delightful bartender, with a shot of the bar (no pun intended).

Meghan was making a joke with another patron as I took this picture.  I also wanted to include the slogan, “Life’s too short to drink the house wine.”  Actually, I find many house wines are perfectly potable as well as being within my price range.  I think life is too short not to drink wine.  That is, if you like wine.  To each his own, as the old lady said when she kissed the cow.

We ordered bacon wrapped scallops and steamed clams.  We split two appetizers among the three of us in order to save room for dessert.  Steven and I do not always order dessert, but Tracy is something of a bad influence on us.  That is another reason we like it when she comes to visit.

Steven enjoys being out with two beautiful women.

Steven insisted on taking a picture of Tracy and me.  I confess, I do not always enjoy looking at pictures of myself.  However, some people seem to think I am somewhat good-looking.  Why should I call them liars?

I thought I ought to get at least one shot of the brown water. It is still showing the effects of the recent flooding the area has experienced.

 

Another outdoor shot.

After eating and drinking, we wandered into the Retail Stores.  I especially like looking at the Herkimer Diamond jewelry.  I also picked up a few postcards to send to the folks I send postcards to.

Gems Along the Mohawk is located at 800 Mohawk St., Herkimer, NY.  The Waterfront Grille’s phone number is 315-717-0700. The number for the retail stores  is 315-717-0077.

 

 

 

One Week! Seriously?

It is one week before the Boilermaker 15K.  I hope all the flooding in Utica does not t put a — wait for it — damper on the proceedings (you must see that I had to make that pun).   I felt that I had to go for a good, long, challenging run this morning, especially since yesterday’s run was cut short.  Accordingly, I got dressed for it as soon as I got out of bed about 6 a.m.  I drank water as I got ready, stretched out a little (which I often neglect to do), and set out.

I expected a lot of mud so had put on an older pair of running shoes.   It was mostly in the gutters but parts of the sidewalk were covered and in places the whole road was awash.  I was running with a bottle of water in my hand but tried not to sip too fast and get nauseous.  It was not as warm and muggy as it was on Friday, but neither was the air fresh and clear.  I was grateful for the occasional breeze.

I headed for my go-to hill, the one up to Herkimer College (or HCCC as I used to call it) (pronounced “H-triple-C,” although real natives say  it “H-trip”).  I figured there would be less mud as I ran up.  There was plenty near the bottom of the hill.  I was surprised to run into more as I went up.  The road wasn’t coated, but there were a couple of places where a swath of stones and gravel angled across, even close to the top.  I maneuvered around these without too much problem.  Lack of traffic helped.

As I ran across the campus, I felt quite solitary.  I thought I would at least see Campus Security making the rounds, but no.  I did not run into any problems, though, so that was good.  As I was running up the steepest part of the hill, I reflected sadly that it was not becoming easier to run hills; merely, I was practicing my ability to keep going even when it sucks.  When the upslope became a more reasonable angle, it stopped sucking, so I felt better about things.  I ran all the way up, around the athletic fields, and down Reservoir Road.  I would have liked to run on the Nature Trail but feared it would be too muddy after yesterday’s rains.

The back road down was not as bad as I had feared.  That road is being worked on so parts are not as well-paved as one would like.  There is one area where there are plants growing up through the gravel.  I kind of admire the plants’ perseverance.  Life, as they say, will find a way.  One little plant is even growing out of a crack in the pavement.  I can almost hear it saying, “Hey, guys, look at me!  I’m over here!”  I angled around the plant as well as some stones and mud.  I changed my mind a few times about which way to run, based on which choice was less muddy, but I got pretty dirty anyways.

I was in the latter portion of my run when I stopped by the spring to re-fill my water bottle.   The stones and board surrounding the spring had moved somewhat but I managed to get close enough with little problem.  Then I headed home, debating on if my run would be exactly an hour or a little longer.  Longer won.  Then I stopped to chat with a couple of neighbors on my cool-down walk, so I was gone long enough to make Steven wonder a little.  He had expected me to run for exactly an hour, and he had forgotten about my cool-down walk.

I felt pretty damn good about myself and more confident about running the Boilermaker 15K in a week.  I still feel I haven’t run enough, but there isn’t anything I can do about that now.  I guess now is the time to begin feeling nervous about where I’m going to park and how early I ought to get there and will I be able to find my way through the crowd after the race to get my beer.  Oh, swell, now this is turning into Wrist to Forehead Sunday!

 

Soggy Scattered Saturday

There really isn’t much to this week’s Scattered Saturday, but it is definitely soggy and, as regular readers know, I have to go for the alliteration.  I have been re-living through my Facebook On This Day my experiences of the flood of 2013.  My experiences were not as horrific as some, for which I am grateful.  No, I am not going to do a re-cap.  I’m not even going to link back to my blog posts of the time, because I don’t know that they’re all that great (I don’t know if any of my posts are all that great, but they’ll have to do).

So after a short(ish) run yesterday, I thought to do a long run today, with hills and everything.  Unfortunately, I paused for a cup of coffee and Facebook perusal before I left.  I hadn’t gone very far when it started to sprinkle.  I persevered until I heard thunder.  Even then I was inclined to keep going.  I kept thinking of Grandma in the pool.  You see, my grandmother loved to swim.  She had a four-foot above-ground pool which we went over and swam in all the time.  If there was thunder, Grandma would watch the lightning and count the seconds till the thunder and stay in the pool if it seemed the storm was far enough away.  I have since heard that this is not the right thing to do, because those thunder storms can move awfully fast.  Still, what was good enough for Grandma…  Additionally, once I’d started running, I felt I REALLY wanted to keep going for at least 15 minutes.

So it was a 15-minute run.  It soon stopped raining, but by then I had showered and felt too clean and sweet-smelling to get all sweaty again.  I thought I might run later, since it had stopped raining.  I wondered how many showers I could reasonably take in a day but was willing to at least go as high as three (if my second run got rained out as well).   However, it rained and thundered on and off, and I never got around to it.

And then Utica got flooded (for non-local readers, Utica is a half hour/45-minute drive away) (depending on if you consider the speed limit a mere suggestion).  I found this out because I was having a Putter-and-Post kind of day.  That is a day when I putter around the house, do something useful, then post about it on Facebook. Or post something else on Facebook or just read other people’s posts.  I am nothing if not flexible about these things.  I had not been inclined to go to Utica today, so that worked out for me.  For everybody in Utica, not so much.

I tried to download some pictures from Facebook to share but had no luck (some laptop issue I’ll have to figure out, I suppose).  So I thought I’d use my Tablet and take a couple of pictures of Herkimer (where I live).  When I had looked earlier out the road was not a river, as it had been in 2013, but the gutters were widening and looking brown.  By the time I took the pictures, it had stopped raining and the puddles had receded, but there was debris in the road.

The end of my driveway looks icky.

 

And this is the view to the right.

 

I went off the porch and walked a short way down the sidewalk to get this shot.

It seems to have stopped raining, but I hear there is flooding in many streets.  Travel is restricted, and many people are pumping out their basements.  Oh dear.  So far we only have a little water in our basement, so we are fortunate this time.  I can only hope it continues, or I will definitely have a Wrist to Forehead Sunday!  As always, I hope you’ll stay tuned.

 

Happy Friday Run

How about a Running Commentary post instead of my usual Lame Post Friday?  For one reason, I ran.  For another reason, the Utica Boilermaker 15K is one week and two days away; it is just about time for this blog to become All Boilermaker All The Time.

It was dreadfully warm at work today.  When I left the building at lunch time to pick up a prescription (at The Medicine Shoppe in Ilion, a great place to do business with), it was even more oppressive outdoors.  Yikes.  But I had only run Sunday and Wednesday this week (don’t judge me).  It would be a really good idea to run.  Rumor had it there would be a terrific storm right about the time I was scheduled to leave work.  Of course I don’t believe everything I hear.  Anyways, if there was thunder and lightning, I could run in place on the mini-tramp while watching my DVD of Nosferatu (regular readers may remember how I am obsessed with that silent vampire movie from 1922).

When I left work, it was raining a nice, gentle rain, which had cooled things off nicely.

“This is great,” I said to the co-worker I walked out with.  “I can totally run in this!”  My plan was made.

First I had a couple of stops to make.  As I got to them, the rain began to pour down in a most torrential fashion.  I was drenched before I entered the first stop.  Of course, due to my odd personality quirk, I laugh at such weather, so it was really no problem getting drenched.  I bet the cashier at the second store that it would stop raining by the time I got home.  And, what do you know, it did. I happily put on my running clothes and got going.

The first thing I noticed was that the lovely coolness I had enjoyed as I left work was gone.  The sun was hot and the humidity was back.  Never mind that, I told myself.  Just run.

I took off down German Street, turning right, because I had turned left on Wednesday’s run.  I headed toward the HARC building, because I wanted to check out the new playground behind it.  They had their grand opening recently, but I have not been there since it was a work in progress.  It seemed to take a long time to get to the end of German Street.  I persevered, dodging around the puddles and trying to ignore the humidity.  I concentrated on running smoothly and taking deep, full breaths.

The playground looks pretty good.  I entered through the archway and started around the blacktop path that surrounds it.  There are a few exercise stations.  Cool!  I’ll have to come back and try them. I’ve been meaning to incorporate different exercises into my workout.

I was able to continue a slow, steady pace without too much discomfort.  I did not reach the “I Can Rock This” stage, but neither was my body crying out for me to for the love of God stop running.  I made it for a full half hour.  Perhaps a longer run, with a few hills, would have been a good idea, especially given the proximity of the Boilermaker.  However, I plan to run again first thing in the morning.   I’ll see how bad-ass of a run I can do then.

After my run, a shower felt great, and a glass of chocolate milk tasted delicious.  Now I have finished my blog post, so that is another chore done.  I think it is time to commence celebrating my weekend.  Maybe I’ll watch Nosferatu.  Happy Friday, everyone.