Saturday, November 28, 2015

Wonder why he ran.

Another thing about the Turkey Trot ... this year, for the first time, they added a 5K. In addition to the fine weather, I imagine adding this race was a factor in attendance surging by two thousand participants.

However, both races started at the same time, and shortly after the one mile mark all 5K runners were diverted one block north to St. Clair to head back for the finish while the five mile runners headed out almost one more mile, then we cut right for a block and headed back up St. Clair ...

... can you see where this might not be the best idea? Suddenly there were all of these runners - most of them slower runners, parents with strollers or children, a kid on a ripstik - and they were in my way.

And not just me, I heard a lot of complaints. In particular, there were these two beefy guys right in right of my during the last tenth of a mile, elbow to elbow, blocking traffic as many of us were trying to speed up to peel off a few seconds. Maybe they were five mile runners, but if this was their pace, how the hell did they ever get ahead of me?

Distance: 4.16 miles
Avg Pace: 7:39
Route: Boulevard Loop

I used to have such beautiful feet. Right now several of my toenails are discolored and may be preparing to fall off. This past marathon session took a lot out of them... could it be the shoes?

Another item: These headphones have lasted a long time. But I believe they are starting to go.

Temperature: 41°
Climate: light rain
Weight: 161 lbs.
Mood: upbeat if anxious

What's That Lyric?
Little Mascara - The Replacements

"Time Machine Weekend" on The Current. This hour? Nineteen Eighty-Five, the greatest year in popular music history ... right after this one.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

2015 Cleveland Turkey Trot

Can't believe Chris Richards wore his race shirt to the race.

Distance: 5 miles
Start: 9:30 am
Temperature: 51°
Official Time: 34:57.63
Pace: 6:59

Overall Place: 255
45-49 Age Group: 14

Way too much going on here.
Yes, very different than last year. No worrying about completely wiping out heading down West 3rd. My shoes remained entirely dry. There was a water stop, and people on the street to cheer. Instead of sleet and ice, it was just a perfect day for running, cool and dry.

Attendance (so they tell me) was up two thousand this year, to 9,000 participants. The weather no doubt played a part, but so did the addition of a 5K. As a result the start was pushed back ten minutes, and then another five. We took it in stride. Remember, it could be worse. It could be sleeting.

A number of us had met at the parking garage or at the starting line, though we separated pretty fast once the race started. Fornadel kept up with me last year, but this year he was on a mission. Soon he was far out ahead of me and I wondered if I could keep up with him.

For most of the race I was something faster than a seven and a half mile, but I never caught up with him. Looking for him at the finish line, I learned he'd crashed around the four mile mark with a major cramp. I keep wondering when something like that is going to happen to me, I've really taken it easy since the Twin Cities, and could feel the slackness in my abdomen. Woo.

Having said that, trying to keep up with Fornadel - even when he wasn't actually there - was some kind of motivating factor. I beat seven minutes? Srsly? I do not have a record of every single five mile race I have ever run, but I he no doubt today's time is a personal best.

Gear: UA shoes, long-sleeved shirt, gloves, cap, SHORTS.

Weight: 162.5 lbs.

Diet creep. This is the way it happens. Yesterday, for example, I had three doughnuts. Seriously. Three. Last night I had two beers. And a piece of cake. This is the way it happens. And today is Thanksgiving.

Yesterday a good friend from high school posted a photo from our ten year reunion, and that was almost twenty years ago.

My. Bald can look good, but balding does not. Also, glasses are important. Also, too, the 90s mini-sideburns thing was really stupid.

And look at my chubby face. I don't want a face like that again.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

You know you're always paying for the shit that's free.

Busy not busy. Certainly not lacking in seconds nor minutes. Work is mental and I have pressing my brain into the rear of my skull rather than projecting it forward out into the world, more hiding than I am afraid.

Home time means either housework or wandering. You can see it does not translate into running. Making an effort currently takes a lot of effort. Clean, organize, try to be helpful. And that's pretty much it.

I am feeling kind of low, is what I am saying. Listless and without direction. The holidays may improve upon this or, as the man said, throw it into sharp relief.

What am I looking forward to? I champion others' efforts. No longer sure what mine are.

Also, I woke up with a headache pretty much every day this week. So that's not good. Better today, though.

Distance: 3.4 miles
Avg Pace: 8:26
Route: Boulevard Loop

So. Running. Still feels good. Snow falling this morning, currently in the crunchy only slightly slippery mode. It was like a real workout. My knees hurt a little, the cold does that. Form is good, just losing a little of my wind. Got to make more than once a week.

But then, that's assured, with a five mile race on Thursday. Supposed to be back up to the sixties by then. Can't remember how many years we've had a mild and warm Thanksgiving.

Family coming into town. Special events at work this work, celebrations and traditions over the weekend. So much to be thankful for and I will remember that every day.

Temperature: 32°
Climate: snow
Weight: 159.5 lbs.
Mood: better?

Because it is snowing, the girl insists on Christmas music. It is not yet Thanksgiving, and yet the wife has not objected. See? All things can change.

What's That Lyric?
Complexity - Eagles of Death Metal

The past several days I have seen the phrase "nothing tastes as good as skinny feels," which is 1) entirely false and 2) totally obnoxious.

Monday, November 16, 2015

You should have been there.

 Big days full of action and wonder.

And yet.

Distance: 3.38 miles
Avg Pace: 8:02
Route: Boulevard Loop

Middle-aged guy, maybe ten years older than I am, flags me down at Taylor and Mayfield. He speaks in a thick accent, he wants to know how far it is around Severance Circle;

"You know, Burger King, that way? One kilo?"

He wants to know kilometers, I say maybe one that way, probably more. Two? Two and a half?

It was friendly, I should have been more helpful. I could have pulled off my phone and figured it out. Still, that raised my spirits.

Remember, never make fun of someone who speaks in broken English, because they know at least two languages.

Temperature: 48°
Climate: cool
Weight: 158 lbs.

... and then I arrived home, and suddenly felt like crying again. Maybe because there was no more running.

What's That Lyric?
You Should've Been There - Marshall Crenshaw

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Racing against sun beams.

The girl made this.
“This is not Iraq or Afghanistan. We are not at war here. We need to stay confident and hopeful.”
Marie-Caroline de Richemont, 32, on her morning run on Saturday near the Musée d’Orsay in central Paris.
New York Times, Nov. 14, 2015 
Distance: 3.38 miles
Avg Pace: 7:53
Route: Boulevard Loop

We eat. We drink. I feel I have been conspicuously consuming quite a bit already. The Halloween candy is all gone but we're moving into the holidays, I have not been running, but still put things into my mouth the way I did when I was in training.

True, they are better things. Yogurt. Almonds. But also beer or whiskey, and there are sweets and for some reason, more soda.

My weight has not gone up, but I can feel muscle slacken into fat. I must be careful. It is too hard to lose weight, but I did that and must continue to exhibit restraint.

Temperature: 48°
Climate: bright and sunny, perfect
Weight: 160 lbs.
Mood: looking up?

I had cold pizza for breakfast.

What's That Lyric?
Soma - The Strokes

Sunday, November 08, 2015

Run away. Far away.

McDonald's Artisan Chicken Sandwich.
Wow. My runs have decreased significantly since the marathon, which was at the beginning of October. And yet I still ran more times this October than any since 2006 - and then I was still training for New York, which is in November.

Distance: 3.35 miles
Avg Pace: 7:40
Route: Boulevard Loop

Exciting weekend. Feeling much better than since my last entry. Last night I was shivering when I went to bed, like I was developing a cold or something but now I feel pretty normal.

Drove seven hours on Friday and again yesterday to see a performance of I Hate This in Oneonta, NY. More on that soon on my writing blog. Suffice to say that, having gotten the kids engaged in a some very necessary housework I really need to get out and move.

Temperature: 50°
Climate: bright and sunny
Weight: 160 lbs.
Mood: good

Brisk run, fast run. Good day, good music. I get an hour or so to write this afternoon in a coffee shop with the girl doing homework. Pizza tonight after the soccer game. This is my good life.

What's That Lyric?
I Could Be Happy - Altered Images

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Alone above a raging sea.

Melancholy intrudes. What happens when dad comes home and starts dinner and the children all move to their personal spaces in the house and he is left alone to drink beer and listen to all those songs from his adolescence while cooking?

The music did not move me to this mood, I was like this and that drew me to the music. But it was not helpful.

I should be glad, good news is all around. Issue 8 passed and I don't know what would have happened if it had not but it wouldn't have been good. Levies passed, democracy was given another chance (well, Issue 2 doesn't help that department but no one realizes that yet) and the work continues.

Reading great Christmas stories written by Cleveland school kids. Visiting our young actors in schools and enjoying their great work and company. One play is going up this weekend, another is entering the design phase. Today was bright and sunny.

So what gives? No idea. Recently however I have become overwhelmingly preoccupied with the fact that in spite of best intentions I inevitably break everything nice I come into contact with.

A couple of days ago I was in the attic, rooting around in some old papers, and found what was supposed to be an amusing, romantic short story, something I had written over twenty years ago.

It was the saddest thing I ever read.

Distance: 3.4 miles
Avg Pace: 8:13
Route: Boulevard Loop

So, anyway, a run sounded like a good idea. And it felt good, it did, the running. Just not sure what action to take next.

Going to rain tomorrow. Perhaps the last summer day ever.

Temperature: 64°
Climate: warm, humid
Weight: 159.5 lbs.
Mood: not good

Oh, here's a thing. Chris at work reminded me last night that registration for the Turkey Trot would increase today, so I signed up. So that is a good and positive thing.

What's That Lyric?
Just Like Heaven - The Cure

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Lust for life.

November first, the last day ever. The ladies are out of the house (sport, work) leaving the boy and I to clean the house. I am the taskmaster and he goes through moments of great productivity coupled with longer stretches of carping and moaning.

We're busting up the afternoon with a bike/run. The afternoon is simply too lovely to waste.

Distance: 3.28 miles
Avg Pace: 8:44
Route: Boulevard Loop

Last time, the boy suffered a backache after our run. I have asked him to perform post-run stretching exercises and we'll lie around for a little before getting back to work.

Temperature: 66°
Climate: bright and shiny
Weight: 158.5 lbs.
Mood: good