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I Ran! I Blogged!

I have not made a Running Commentary Post in a long time. That could be because I have not been running much lately. What can I say? It turns out I am really good at talking myself out of doing things. Um, some things. I can almost never talk myself out of, for example, eating cookies. But let us not speak of these things. I want to blog about my run.

The weather was conducive: not too cold and not precipitating. I got myself into running clothes, put a load of laundry in the washer (the extent of my ability to multi-task), and set out.

Immediately I regretted not wearing my reflective vest or ARMY shirt with a reflective decal. The sidewalks were not uniformly clear. I knew I would want to spend some time in the road, and I like to give myself every advantage. Well, I would just have to be extra careful.

I turned left onto German Street, so I could be left-side-facing-traffic in the road. There was a nice stretch of no cars coinciding with some icy-looking sidewalk. How often does that work out? When I hopped back to the sidewalk, I had to dodge onto grass to avoid a couple puddles. I hooked around and tried to spend the rest of my run on less busy streets.

The best thing about the run was all the Christmas lights still up. How I will miss them! I feel I have not taken enough runs, walks, and drives to enjoy the lights sufficiently. However, I feel that way almost every year. I can’t spend all my time looking at lights, after all.

I changed my mind about which way to go several times but was delighted to go by a house with lots of lights and the homeowner outside.

“I have to tell you, the lights are lovely,” I said as I ran by.

“Thank you very much,” he said.

“Thank YOU!” I replied.

It was a short but enjoyable run. Perhaps as I get back into blogging regularly, I can also get back into running.


One Must Begin Again

I read somewhere that wintertime running is about maintenance, not necessarily improvement.  I told myself this as I finished a fairly short run this morning.  “It’s about maintenance,” I thought.  Then I thought, “My runs are about blog posts, weight-loss goals, health, and my own entertainment, not necessarily in that order.”  I had thought  doing a Sunday Running Commentary as I set out on my run.  I last ran a week ago and quite frankly did not feel like running today, but, as I said to Steven as I went out the door, “One must begin again.”  Then I thought, “That would be a good title for a blog post.”  So here we are.

We had a couple of days of spring-like weather last week, but I, perhaps foolishly, did not run then.  For one reason, my body was in its final throes of rebellion against 10-hour days.  I know, other people work longer days at more difficult jobs, and they don’t even complain.  All I can say is, that is them, this is me.  I was dead tired all week and not up to running through all the puddles which were the inevitable result of the warmer temperatures.  Today was cold, and it had been snowing.  Snow offers traction, so I thought.

Turns out I shouldn’t think so much.  I tried to run on the sidewalk and soon found there was a LOT of ice under the snow.  After my trailing foot zooped out from underneath me for the third time (luckily my weight was already established on my leading foot at the time), I went into the road, which was a little better.  And a little worse, because of traffic.  Sunday mornings are usually pretty tame traffic-wise, but I had waited till after eleven to run, hoping for a warmer temperature.  Well, the cars would just have to watch out for me; I was staying where I was.

I did not spend much time on German Street, which is one of the busier streets, but soon turned down Margaret. That was quieter, which was good, because it was also pretty snow-covered. I went for the barest part of the road and did now worry too much about staying close to the curb, except when I saw or heard a car coming.  It did not feel too bad, running along at my usual shuffling pace.  The air was cold, but you’ll have that.

My deal with myself was that I only had to run 20 minutes.  I can worry about building up when the weather is better.  If I worry about it at all. I mean, why should I worry?  Worry doesn’t burn calories or build muscle mass.  It is a quite useless activity.  I ran, I wrote a blog post.  Let’s leave it at that.  Happy Sunday, folks.


Driving Myself Crazy

So yesterday, although tired, I managed to type in over 600 words.  That is probably not going to happen today.  I am tired once again, but from less healthy exertion.  I drove through Utica (NY, for non-local readers) to a very busy section of New Hartford. Christmas shopping and rush-hour traffic!  Yikes!  I can’t believe I used to drive that route five days a week when I worked in New Hartford.  What a pain in my big fat butt.  But it was worth the trip to pick up my new glasses from EyeQ of CNY.  I wanted to write a whole post raving about my awesome new glasses and how wonderful Diane and Dr. Carrock at EyeQ are.

Well, one problem, other than the tired part, is that I can’t take a decent selfie.  How can I properly rave about the fabulous frames Diane helped me pick out if I can’t post a picture?  They are pretty fabulous.  I haven’t had really bold glasses in a long time.  Oh well, perhaps somebody will take a picture of me in the near future and I can post it here.

In the meantime, I need a blog post for today, at least enough of one to count for a Wuss-out Wednesday.  Perhaps I should have gone on at greater length about my drive through traffic.  Believe it or not, the construction I drove through was not the worst part; that went pretty smoothly.

Hmmm… no, nothing else is coming to mind.  I’m just going to throw in a picture of Nosferatu and call it a night.  Happy Wednesday, everyone.

He is not going Christmas shopping.


12 Hours Make a Difference

I ran Friday morning (another prior to 4 a.m. start) then gave blood Friday afternoon so gave myself Saturday off. I took Sunday and Monday off for no good reason, although I did take nice walks with my poocher all three of those days. Still, I thought, three days off isn’t so bad. It’s not like, for example, two weeks off (don’t judge). Still, I was determined to run today (Tuesday).

When I remembered to during the day, I reminded myself that I would run after work. My plan was to run on the mini-tramp if it was raining, which I kind of sort of expected to happen. That wouldn’t be so bad, I thought. I could watch a silent movie while I ran. Or maybe Judge Mathis. I could rock the mini-tramp.

As the afternoon progressed, I watched the sun continue to shine. I know it can cloud up in an instant in the Mohawk Valley (“If you don’t like the weather here, wait five minutes”), but it showed no disposition to do so. So I would run outside. That was OK, too. I wanted to run out Main Street and check the name of the street you take to the path over what used to be the hydraulic canal. I haven’t run that path in a while. I could rock that.

I’m sure some readers have guessed, I didn’t rock much of anything when it came right down to it. Oh, I got myself out the door and moving. But it wasn’t very fast. It was warm and humid. The air was heavy and I felt heavier. Get used to it, I told myself. It’s only June. I reflected that this was the difference between jumping out of bed to run and working all day before running. At least I was hydrated, because I keep a bottle of water handy at all times while at work. I tried to feel the benefits of hydration. All I could do was marvel at how dreadful I must feel if I were not hydrated.

I turned down German Street towards Main Street. There is quite a lot of traffic in Herkimer around 4 p.m. There is a 4-way stop at Main Street, but did I trust it? I could see from two blocks away the line of cars going in each direction on German. I could make eye contact with the near driver, he could wave me on, I could start going and the guy going in the opposite direction could nail me. Well, he probably wouldn’t nail me, starting from a dead stop as he would be. But still. Perhaps I would continue down German Street.

But first I would have to cross Prospect, and there were two cars waiting at that stop sign (it is a T, not a 4-way). They would probably let me go, but would I be robbing them of their chance to get onto German? I couldn’t take that responsibility. I turned down Prospect. This wasn’t so bad. I could run down to Meyers Park.

Couldn’t I?

My legs felt worse and worse. They begged me to stop. They pointed out soft patches of grass where a middle-aged lady could probably take a very comfortable nap. I knew I couldn’t really, but the argument was persuasive. I reminded myself that I knew how to persevere. I questioned whether that was really true.

Then I began to wonder why I had not stayed sensibly in my house on the mini-tramp. After all, where is it written that one may only run on a mini-tramp if it is raining? Why couldn’t I run on the mini-tramp any time I wanted to? It’s not that my house is so much cooler than outdoors, but the humidity has not penetrated in yet, as it undoubtedly will soon start to do. Moreover, I have a ceiling fan in my living room. That would have to help. Then the great outdoors provided me with some breezes, and I felt better about everything.

For a little while.

I did manage to persevere, for at least a short run. I was up to 26 minutes at the last increase, but I thought a 20 minute run would be acceptable for today. I will persist in calling it a run. Maybe it looked more like a shuffle or a plod or worse, but at least I did it. And wrote a blog post. That is not bad for a Tired Tuesday.

On the Streets of Ilion

Yesterday I mentioned running errands as part of the reason I was too beat to blog (ooh, that would be a good title for my next Wuss-out Wednesday) (I bet I already used it). Today (Wednesday) I thought I would wuss out with a short post about What I Did After Work Yesterday.

First I had to leave work late. Not because I was working, but because of Ilion traffic. You see, there is a factory in the middle of the village whose largest shift lets out at 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. I might work there, but this is not a work blog. My point is, there are certain directions it is not easy to drive in Ilion, NY between 3:30 and four p.m.

Actually, things let up somewhat by 3:45, so I was OK. I drove to the Salvation Army Thrift Store (also known as Salvation Armani; I love that expression) with little or no difficulty. I dropped off my donation, also with little or no difficulty. Then I drove back into downtown Ilion.

A little difficulty.

Nothing too bad, but Ilion is kind of weirdly laid out. No offense, Ilion. I grew up in Rome, NY, which I always considered kind of screwy. In Rome none of the streets are quite parallel with the result that many of them do not come out where you expect. In addition, Rome boasts many one way streets, most of them inconveniently located, as far as I’m concerned. So I always thought, growing up in Rome, other towns could hold no terrors for me.

Turns out, not so much. Um, I was not filled with terror; that’s just an expression.

I drove around and up Otsego Street to Kinney Drugs. Kind of a screwy parking lot (no offense, Kinney Drugs), but I managed it. Then I had to figure out how to get to Rite Aid (it was a drug store kind of day). There is a whole complex of stores, doctor offices and other businesses that I have yet to fully figure out. I drove around it.

I guess it didn’t make that good of a story after all (I know I don’t need “of” there, but I kind of like the sound of it). Perhaps if I would have found a street map of Ilion and really explained my course. That would hardly have been wussing out, and it is Wuss-out Wednesday. Hope to see you on Non-Sequitur Thursday (when Rocky the Squirrel says, “Again? But that trick never works!”) (and whoever gets that reference, I’m pretty sure they would only have said “Rocky says,” so, sorry, but I wanted to make sure SOMEBODY got it).

First Summer Run

I hope it’s not too soon for another running post, but after all, Saturday Running Commentary.

The hot weather arrived just barely in time for summer in the Mohawk Valley, so I sensibly got out early. It’s a good time to run anyways, because of less traffic. I hoped it would be an enjoyable run, especially since I spent a good portion of yesterday feeling quite awful. I had high hopes.

It seemed to go pretty well. I almost didn’t run any hills but decided I could handle the one out Main Street. Well, that part wasn’t much fun. At one point I could have stayed sedately on the left side facing traffic, made a 90 degree turn at the proper place and continued on the left side of the street. Instead I cut across the center of the intersection, feeling like quite the rebel. In my defense, there were no cars in sight or hearing.

I passed the house where I’ve seen — and pretended not to see — the lady in her nightgown letting her dog out. Neither she nor the dog were in evidence, so I took the opportunity to admire her black wrought iron lawn furniture. Not so comfy to sit it but oh so decorative, especially with a pot of red flowers on the table.

As I ran down the hill back to civilization, I heard a vehicle behind me. I wasn’t worried, because I was left side facing traffic this time. He would be on the OTHER side of the road. Well, that (insert bad word of your choice) in a pick-up truck (to add insult to injury; I love pick-up trucks) was straddling the center line! What was his excuse for that! Early though it was, I thought it was a little late for him to be still drunk from partying last night. Then again, what do I know?

Back in the village proper I stuck to residential streets with sidewalks. Plenty of four way stops when I had to cross a street, but not much traffic anyways. When I went to cross Prospect, I started to slow down to let a car at the stop sign go, but the lady waved me on. I gave the thank-you wave and hurried across.

“You go, girlfriend!” yelled the lady in the car. I think I recognized the voice as a lady from Curves, but I kept running so did not check.

When I got closer to home I saw Nicky, one of my canine friends, out walking with his person. I picked up the pace and crossed the street.

“I have to pet Nicky,” I said. “He’s such a good dog.”

“How’s your dog?” asked his person.

“Oh, she’s a sweetie. I’ll be taking her for a walk in a bit.”

“Before it gets too hot,” she said.

I agreed and ran on. Tabby was happy to accompany me on my cool-down walk. I felt terrific. I think I sweated out all of yesterday’s light-headedness. If only I don’t get another sinus headache as the day wears on, my life will be perfect.