My Watch is an Asshole and My Phone is a Liar!

Just WTF!  I need a new watch!  I just have to break down and buy one because mine is dying.  First I cracked it, then it stopped syncing properly and now it won’t even record a run.  It goes to that screen and connects to the GPS but then it won’t turn on.  It must have gotten wet on Saturday when my wingman and I did 8 miles and got drenched in a downpour on the second 4.  GRRRR  but that’s fine because I have the Map My Run app on my phone so I turn her on, flip my watch off and away I went.  All is well, I’m kind of struggling through tired legs in mile one but nothing I’ve not worked through before.  Today it’s cold but with every step I’m warming up and waiting for my assistant to start reading off my stats.  Now she tells me I’m at a mile before I know that I’m at my true 1 mile mark.  Ok, it wasn’t far off so I stop the app and and stretch my shins that are protesting a bit.  I don’t stop long and head on my way through mile 2.  That is where the arguments began with the stupid app.  As I approached somewhere in the vacinity of 1.75 miles she lowers my music and announces that I’m at mile 2.  NO I’M NOT you stupid lady in my phone!  Now I’m irritated but all i really need to know is the time because I know the distance by heart.  Whatever, I keep going pausing just for a few seconds to again stretch my shin then move along to finish mile 3.  The thing that bugs me is that she tells me I have these rediculously fast times that i know I can’t hit.  Irritating.  Half way through mile 3 she says I’m at 3- LIAR!  It doesn’t matter really, just bugs me.  So now I need a new watch and potentially a new app as backup.  The run was ok overall but just took my mind off my running focus.  Some days it’s just the little things that drive you crazy especially when it’s the stuff that you rely on to keep tabs on your progress.


The Strangers In The Road

There are a lot of runners out there who hate dealing with people who aren’t runners who ask them if they are going to run a marathon.  In fact I have read and heard many say how much it bothers them when it happens.  Me, I think it’s hilarious and I find it hugely amusing when someone asks me that question.  I know the answer right now is no, however, the answer next  year is more than likely either possibly or working on it.  I feel like I know that I will but right now 13.1 is at the top of my capabilities but 15 is on my mind so 26.2 isn’t far away.  I saw a little odd couple, strangers to me walking in the road today as I ran about a half mile from completing my 3 mile morning run .  They were an interracial “couple” who could be just friends that were walking together in kind of a wonky way weaving back and forth from one side of the street to the other.  I can’t see like I used to so I patted my Mace not knowing who they were or what age or what their intention was.  I don’t usually see them but that’s why I carry mace.  As I got closer I thought the woman had special needs because she was swinging her arms all over the place.  I realized the closer I got that she was waving the gnats away.  They don’t bother me because I’m running and they can’t keep up!  LOL.  These people, strangers as they were, were harmless.  As I approached I said to them “if you run, they won’t bother you”  like I had any business even supposing on them that they should run (although it didn’t come out like that).  I flashed a big smile at them to show that I was happy and non threatening as if I could even look like that.  I guess it’s possible since I wear a bandana on my head that sort of says “I’m tough don’t mess with me”.  The man was a cute little black man who still had as much get up and go as his aging body could muster.  He was happy and just enjoying his walk with his lady friend.  As I ran past the he yelled out and asked me if I was training for the marathon.  THE MARATHON like there was only one, but to him it was a generic statement about the effort.  I told him that right now I only do half’s and ran on my way but it gave me pause to think about why he would think that.  Maybe simply because I’m running.  Do I look like a Marathoner if there is a “Look” to any single person who does run one.  I certianly am not lanky like a stereotypical marathoner might look but in his mind perhaps there is no “look” to someone undertaking and training for such an event.  I smiled because I let myself believe that he believed I could run one.  I’m sure I can and I’m sure I most likely will.  For a moment I felt famous and super athletic and a lot like Rocky with the neighborhood kids who admired him who ran with him.  Maybe my imagination got away from me but for a moment it was fun to wear an imaginary iconic coat of notoriety for the strangers in the road.


Hitting Goals

I’ve run the same 3 miles as one of my short routes for 6 years.  I know the road and the houses and the sounds of the outside, the highway running paralell to my neighborhood as well.  Today I did something that I have’t done in a really long time.  Three years to be exact.  I ran 100 miles in July, actually 101.01 which is funny in a binary kind of way.  It felt great to hit a big goal and is, as always, super motivational for more goal achievements.  It’s funny how knowing that you’re about to hit that goal seems to make it easier or more exciting at least.  I am proud that I am able to do this and work out and be strong and healthy at my own pace.  Today is a great day just because I did it because sometimes it’s merely about doing something just because you can.  That’s what this was really about. Finding out if I could still do it, making the time work for me to fit it in and being dedicated in my determination to not shave miles off.  I didn’t quit, shave miles off or accept a DNF.  I kept my mind focused and my feet moving.  As it got closer I knew I would make it happen and made sure that I did.  Today is supposed to be an off day but being 2.02 miles shy of a goal like that was the reason I strapped on my shoes today and headed out to finish it off.  You can do anything you set your mind to.  I wonder what I’ll do next.


The Moments That Tell You That You’ve Arrived!

So there are things along this journey to being fitter that are kind of like milestones for me.  One is pulling on clothes that I like in a size that makes me smile.  Another is when your friends or co-workers tell you that you look good which is always nice.  One of my favorite all time motivational smile-infusing happiness-creating things that have happened to me is when my kids tell me nice things without trying to make me feel good.  Let me explain what I mean by that. 

I know that I look good.  Good compared to my old self and the healthiest that I’ve ever been.  Good is relative I realize because I understand that I am not shaped like Barbie or the tall and skinnies of the world and that is just fine with me.  I am happy with the 161 average weight that I seem to hover over these days because I’m muscular and in fact also shorter at 5′ 4″ tall.  This means that I tend to grow out instead of up or evenly distributing my ever fluctuating weight because that’s the law of physics.  I will never be Jessica Rabbit or have Heidi Klum’s legs sadly. I’m me and I know my boundaries and I’m fine with them.  My job is managing all of that within the confines of the fitness routine I put in and keeping it all in check to stay between 150-165 roughly.  I am always striving to get to the bottom of that range but truthfully I don’t care if I never see the big one-five-oh again.  I work out and I work out pretty regularly, by choice and sometimes twice a day.  It’s a little bit of an addiction and definitely a habit for sure. Something I’m just always working on like Mr. Holland’s Opus, just not ever done.  I want to live to the crazy age of 96 so this is a good path to help me get there.

Now nothing and I mean nothing means more to me in this world than my kids.  It is super important that they are proud of me and want to be with me and talk to me and hug me and hopefully always like my kisses! I hope they always tell me about their days be it good or crappy.  I would die if I couldn’t be with and around them.  They are just awesome!  So, in the flow of two conversations recently, one with each son (19 and 17 respectively),  we were discussing super skinny something or other and I said to one son that if whatever the statement were, was true I’d be super skinny.  His answer melted me to pause my thought and compose my fast melting self.  He said “You are super skinny Mom.” and he kept moving on with his thoughts about whatever it was that we were talking about.  He wasn’t looking for accolades or a hug or even a response.  It was his honest opinion.  PAUSE: my son thinks I’m super skinny!  woo hoo!  On another day not long thereafter I was talking to the other son about something weight related (not necessarily mine) and whatever I said it prompted him to say “well it’s harder to get any smaller than you Mom, you work out all the time.” and he too proceeded to add to the conversation as if he had just said “the sky is blue”.

There it was again from a different source.  From the one who wouldn’t sugar coat something to make you feel good (that’s his father in him). They both simply had said what they believed to be true which was like getting the best race bling ever!  For those of you who do not know I am a medal whore.  I Race for the prize because why should I not be rewarded for running for 2+ hours right?  As I reflected on these thoughts that my sons had about me, it occurred to me that I have reached a personal milestone in my healthy lifestyle endeavor in this life.  I have achieved the admiration of my kids who are proud of me for all this crazy hard work that I do.  It’s become so much a part of who I now am that they don’t question it as being Mom’s new workout habit but more like part of what their Mom does.  Some mom’s garden (I do that too) and some Moms do crafts and some Moms drive trucks.  My kid’s Mom cooks great meals, sings new words to old songs, runs in the rain, would do anything for her kids to be happy and she also does fitness and that’s cool to them.  I couldn’t have gotten two better compliments in the world than those two matter of fact statements made in passing by my sons.

Well, that was longer than expected but sometimes they are.  Remember that there are those moments that tell you that you’ve arrived that you have to cherish and lock away for the days where you feel like you aren’t doing anything right.  They are the moments that motivate us and push us to strive for more every day.


It’s True!

So I can now confirm to you that Mace does indeed sting and burn.   No, I did not spray myself with it ON PURPOSE.  I got up today to go for a run and it was dark and kind of gloomy because it’s going to rain.  I thought a dark morning at 5am warranted my taking my mace with me just incase even though I don’t believe anything bad would happen on the route I’ve run 52,000 times before but one never knows.  So I was putting my mace in my pants waist pocket (didn’t take the holder because it pulls my pants down) and hit the trigger by mistake.  Out through my pants came this stream of brown smelly stuff.  I knew it was brown because I’ve sprayed it just to see what kind of stream and smell it had.  So now it’s dripping down my server which I clean up and off I go.  About a quarter mile in I feel this burning right where the mace is.  This confirms for me that I feel safer knowing that I carry the stuff that gave me this blotch when I’m running alone.  So the lesson here is don’t dispense Mace in your pants and if that does happen, wash it off and wet down your pants which I didn’t do, to rinse out the liquid so it doesn’t irritate your skin.  If you don’t have mace, get it because it really will work.  Always run safe.


Running and Fishing lessons

Today I went to the Cape Cod Canal with my wingman James.  YAY!  James is back from camp and I’m so happy about that because I missed him last week even though I was running a race.  Today I only need to do 7 or 8 miles so easy peasy.  So we head to the Canal with our new fishing gear and salt water lures.  We haven’t fished salt water yet but in fact got a saltwater license just yesterday so we could fish with the big boys. We park in a different spot than usual because we wanted to fish off the dock up by Scussett Beach.  So we park and I do my miles as James rides along keeping me company and we chat about fishing.  It was a perfect day running.  Overcast and 71 with a breeze made for awesome running and good splits as it turns out.  Along our 7 mile journey we stopped a few times, once to ask a guy what lures they were using to catch such big fish…. I mean they were 2 ft stripers for sure and everyone was catching them.  We really want one so we asked someone. When I’m done we go get iced coffee and a quick stop by the local bait and tackle shop to pick us up the lure that would catch us a fish and we were back on our way down  the Canal to find us a spot  to park.  We found free parking and walked a short distance to the dock.  I strung up my new rod with line and a new lure and casted my line.  James hooked up his super duper $10 lure and on the first few casts some bad juju happens.  His line snaps and he loses the new lure.  Needless to say, he’s pretty pissed.  He pulls out the 50lb line that I bought him and asks another fisher how to string the line around the reel for the first time.  This guy chuckles a little at the 50lb line I guess because it was super hefty and a little over the top.  I think James likes it despite the snicker because it pretty much guarantees that he won’t have another snapped line ever.  He’s his mother’s kid for sure!  So,this nice guy helps him and then we decided it was time to go.  He wasn’t having fun and that made me sad so we stopped by the bait and tackle shop one more time to pick up our lures for next week and then home we go.  So we learned that we like overcast non humid non sunny days on the canal.  We learned that sea lures are colorful and can be pricey.  We also learned that you need hefty line for sea fishing.  Good lessons but even more important was the time we got to spend together.  My favorite!


Good To Know!

So Friday I decided to take a vacation day and go to the beach with my running friend.  Yes, those are actually my feet over there.  I could not sit at my desk not one minute so I used a vaca day and called my friend who I knew was headed there and pretty much invited myself along.  So happy I did because it was rejuvenating to be near the water with my toes in the sand and smelling like sunblock with yummy food in the cooler.  What could be better!  So you may be asking what the hell my day off has to do with running, well I’ll tell you.  I used sunscreen all day.  Lubed up more than I ever do just so I wouldn’t burn.  So there we layed, and then we walked up one side of the beach, came back ate and then walked the other side of the beach.  All in all we were in the sun about 6 hours.  I did drink water and Powerade but clearly not enough as I was to find out on Saturday.  Saturday’s run was horrifically difficult.  My legs were swelling and hard to get going.  My breathing was a bit labored and it was like running in mud or like the days before I get my period where I’m just made of lead.  I feel pretty positive that it was because I was dehydrated.  long storty short, I will have to do a better job at drinking water if I plan on being at the beach or even just in the sun .  So, note to yourself, always hydrate no matter what.