Sunday, July 26, 2009



Even though I woke up @ 0700, I did not get out straight away and go get my run in. I listened to the radio for a little bit ... actually a lot. I don't think that I got outside to run until 10 o'clock. Then, there was the run itself.

I haven't been getting up this week and running like I wanted to ... I have been out for four days, but they weren't the best four days. Odd, because the times we actually pretty good. I didn't 'feel' as good as I should have felt.

Things are on the upswing. Going to go out to 'the D.C. Metroplex' the first week of August. Another visit ... we are both anxious to be with each other, and I don't know who is more excited, especially now. Anywho, I would like to get another 5lbs. off my frame. The two weeks or so I have is enough time for me to make that happen.

Getting up and out of the house, was more of a chore than I would like. Then, which run was I going to choose? I had hoped to go for a long run ... which is at least an hour (don't really know how far it is ... btwn 6-7 mi.). Since I was draggin' and didn't really want to do it, I thought I'd do a short run and some sprints.

But I couldn't find my stopwatch. There is a 'medium' run, and I thought to do that and call it a day. As I walked to my 'start point', I decided to go on and run the big run anyway.

And off I went.


Being stuck in the 'analog age' when it comes to personal listening devices, I am still using a Panasonic sports walkman to listen to my mix tapes. One of the cool things about it, is the stopwatch feature (not so good for sprints, though) that beeps at one, three and five minute intervals.

I like hearing the one minute beeps, and it helps me keep a decent pace. Though I was lagging, I decided to go on and pick up my feet and get on with the get on. I could make it up if I was willing, and I had decided that I was willing.

Now it has been said that you actually run better without listening to music. That may well be true, but having music helps you to pass the time, for sure. I went on and kicked it up a notch or two and could feel myself pushing against the artificial walls that keeps most people from exercise. I've always imagined that my veins and arteries were expanding to carry the blood that was pushing through my heart.

Got lucky and the light that I needed to cross was in my favor. When I break my stride, no matter what else happens I never seem to get back on that pace. Making the light meant that it really was going to be up to me.

Running distance tests your character in a way that lifting weights or other forms of aerobic exercise doesn't. It is all about you, and there isn't a spotter and you can't fake that a move is too much for you to keep up with. But one of the hidden benefits of running is that it is all about the moment and the goal. You are only as fast as your next step, and if you aren't into your next step it doesn't matter how fast you want to be at the end of your run. Like life, you are only as good as what you do, consistently.

Even with the 'impeccable blahs' shadowing me, I stayed in focus with my next step. There was a long stretch where I wanted to stop ... but I had passed my 'point of no return'.

Because I run from the house, it would mean I would have to walk back home from wherever I stopped. That means to me, why not finish what I have started, even if I didn't get the time that I had hoped, at least I would have the triumph of finishing the run despite not 'having it'.


As I moved away from the PNR, the Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs song, 'Y Control' came on and perked me up. That cd was a let down to me, but I did like that song. I haven't gotten their new one yet, may get the single 'Heads Will Roll', though.

I knew that if I could break down and take this mile in small pieces, I would be able to finish well, if not strong. Keyed on 'the next step', I made my way through and into the stretch where I could finally see the end.

A five minute shower cooled me down and I started to run even faster. The showers were done, and I was kicking out to my finish.

As I walked out to cool down, I stole a glance at my time ... two and a half minutes better than the last time I ran that particular run. And that I didn't feel up to it at first, made it feel all the better.

Showered, ate a big breakfast and listened to NPR. Good day, good day.


Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

I went for my second run of the vacation on Friday, committed to pace myself properly so that I would not need to do any walking, and like you said, reached the half way point and that was enough motivation. Even sprinted the last couple of hundred yards.

Today was alot of walking and stair climbing. I am anxious to see how the week went, would be great to gain no weight on vacation.

a corgi said...

awesome, Mark, that you have another trip coming up sooo soon to see SFC!! I know you both are looking forward to that!!

I liked reading your strategy with running; I have to agree music does help the time of exercise to pass quicker


Beth said...

I'm getting caught up on blogs, and just read your last five most recent. It seemed that you started on a bit of a blue note, and as I progressed on through the week, you began to pull out of it, ending on a high note. Most excellent! Love, Beth