Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Same Every Verse

It was not an ideal run tonight.  I couldn't find my windbreaker and I didn't want my red hoodie to get wet from the rain so I bagged it and just went without.  This had the added factor of not having an easy place to squirrel away my extra headphone cordage.  It was bouncing around all the way down the road.  Plus, and I know I am being vain here to think anyone notices or cares, but my arms were out and I was thinking about the extra jiggle out in front of the world. Why anyone would care how toned my arms were after being blinded by the whiteness of my legs, I'm not sure.  Being honest here, it crossed my mind more than once.

The Dear Husband had nearly no enthusiasm for the run tonight either.  This is bad.  I could on his single minded tenacity to pull me out the door and down the road.  I have birthday cake in my fridge still.  It knows my name and calls to me hourly.  I put in my iPod to drown out the sound of birthday cake and the song that most encapsulated this whole running experience played.  It is from the kid music section of my discography.
There is a marvelous composer, Richard Perlmutter, who has added hilarious lyrics to little bits of classical music.  His albums, the Beethoven's Wig series, are so fun.  This time the song he wrote to Edvard Grieg's Hall of the Mountain King seemed apropos.  Here is the music I'm sure you'll recognize it:

Monday, April 23, 2012

Birthday Cake

It was Girl Child Segundus' birthday Saturday and her party on Sunday, and I had not one, but two pieces of birthday cake to run off today.  Birthday cake is my vice.  Oh and coffee.  OK, I read a lot of genre books and very few improving ones. But those three are all complimentary, it's hard to not want to enjoy all three at once.

I have a new accountability partner.   I invited Soul Sister to run on Mondays with Dear Husband.  I assured her that even though she is beginning her couch to 5K, she would be no problem keeping up because I run at a snail's pace.  This turned out to be true.  We began our 5K loop from Jacobs to Terry to Ft. Casey.  Dear Husband took off down the road as he always does; Soul Sister and I motivated down the road at a slower pace.  Finally, she hit a running portion of her program.  She bounded ahead with a long bouncy stride.  Uh oh.  I kept my pokey pace and caught up on her walk portion.  We tortoised and hared it all the way to Ft. Casey.

As we rounded past the Engle Farm the program timed out.  The sound of lowing cows filled the air and the scent of freshly manured fields filled out nostrils.  But hey!  It was sunny and the run was over.  We walked the rest of the way talking and laughing.  How wonderful.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Donde estas, Yolanda?

Que Paso, Yolanda

I gotta put more of Pink Martini's Sympathique in my running mix.  I'm always hunting for a good uptempo song to run to and I remembered this is fun dishwasher dancing music.  You know, the songs that make you dance in your kitchen while you empty the dishwasher - I know I'm not alone in doing this.  It has the added benefit of embarrassing 11 year old boys. If you can't move yourself to rumba music what can you move yourself too?

Te Busque, Yolanda

I found My iPod today!  It had been missing since December and I was using Helen's iPod shuffle this whole time.  I checked a purse I had checked at least 5 times before and lo and behold there it was happy and bemused that I had been looking for it this whole time.  "What me? I am not the iPod you want to take running! I have no clip - you might have to stick me somewhere where I'll get sweaty - no thanks!" I used it. It got sweaty.

Y No Estas, Yolanda

The rest of our program is less about run time as it is distance.  Two more 25 minute sessions then 28 minutes from here on out.  We are now running about 3K although we have done the 5K loop once.  Since I found my "sweet spot",  I thought I'd try and trick my body into thinking I was dropping to a walk but not actually doing it.  I started out with a faster pace and at 10 minutes dropped to my normal running -  slow creep forward - then kicked it up to the faster pace again after 3 minutes.  This worked pretty well into the second half of the run when I spat out my gum thinking that I was done needing it.  I immediate started choking on nothing.  It was a tough recovery after that.  I had Yolanda kick up on the playlist right as I got my rhythm back and finished the last 3 minutes to that rumba beat, complete with hand gestures.  I'd have had the children running away in shamed embarrassment.  As it was the dog gave me funny looks.  Well, I was pretty sure I looked like Carmen Miranda, if Carmen Miranda was overweight and fish belly white legs.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Check In

I am so happy that it is not raining. It was supposed to be raining but instead it is somewhat sunny with heavy clouds on the horizon. This is a good thing as I was not eager to run 25 minutes in the rain. That's right. 25 whole minutes of constant running versus just constant motion.

I don't even really want to write this I am so tired. I didn't actually feel so tired until I sat down. I wish I had something fun to say. Mostly I just missed the 3 minute walk in the middle of the run.

That kitten, I know just how it feels.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Secret Handshake

Secrets Revealed!!

I have stuck with this running thing long enough that I may have wormed my way into the secret circle of genuine exercise enthusiasts. I know some of them read this blog, and after all my moaning one of them threw me a tip. Turns out gum helps with that horrible saliva filled dry mouth. I snagged a stick of Girl Child Prima's wacky watermelon and tore it in half. One: because I am cheap and figure if it works I can make a pack of gum last longer (Yes! I am that cheap! Don't you envy my Husband and Kids now?) Two: I was not entirely convinced I wouldn't choke on it and fall writhing to the ground, so a smaller piece seemed in order. It worked. Holey Cannoli! I may learn the secret handshake next and glean the no more wedgie secret - it better not be a thong.

Sweet Spot

I figured out my sweet spot running. (If sweet spot means I don't heave and gasp, my legs only moderately burn, and I feel a righteous glow afterwards instead of clammy shakes.) Run for 8+ minutes, short walk, run for 8+ minutes. I need the walking but the running is long enough that I find a good steady pace long enough my inner critic has to take a breath. True, my real sweet spot is in Krispy Kreme but they closed down the one in Mount Vernon and now I have no place to get a blueberry glazed. There is no justice.


I stayed close enough to Dear Husband today that I surprised him. I even was running ahead of him for a while that did not include the point where he turns around before I do. Then the Dog cut in front of me and I lost the faster pace. I am not sure how much longer I could have held it anyway, but I am blaming the Dog. It's one of the reasons you get a dog: that, eating sandwich corners, and barking at TV doorbells so you can laugh.

Playlist: God Be Merciful to Me - Jars of Clay, Come to the Cross, Healing Rain, Deep in Love with You - Michael W Smith, Suitcases - Dara Maclean, God Almighty - Chris Tomlin, Open Up the Sky - Deluge, Still Alive - Jonathan Colton

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Tony Award

Sports Day in the Sinclair House

Wow. Never thought I'd say that. The Boy had baseball down in South Whidbey. The Girl Child Prima had a double header in soccer in Oak Harbor. Dear Husband and I began the next stage in the Running: First Blood the Opera: based on the stage play adapted from the novella by Stephen King. Girl Child Segundus got off scot free to jump endlessly on her cousin's trampoline. Boy Child was walked and stole home in his game. Girl Child found her skill set as a kick butt goalie, body checking the ball hard at least four times in the second half of the game two.


We set out for our run in the warm sun and the soft breeze of the late afternoon. I reached to turn on my iPod and got: nothing. I checked to make sure I turned it on. Yup. In the words of my Grandma Nelda: "Oh for Pete's sake!" I turned to Dear Husband: "I need a 1/2 hour." There was No Way I could run without music. Be alone with my thoughts? Heaven forfend! I'd need to hire extra help at the complaint desk.

1/2 Hour Later

How can your mouth be both filled with saliva and dry at the same time? Wasn't that the plague of Egypt right after frogs and flies? (Dad I'm not serious! Breathe deeply. Inaccuracy can be funny!) I started to fantasize about pitchers of ice cold lemonade, sweet tea, and various combinations of the two. I pictured myself like those marathoners grabbing little cups of water. Wished I was a kid bicycling through sprinklers again.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


So So Done

We had a dryer fire today. It is only by the grace of God the house didn't burn down. I ran a CD down to my mom's house and neglected to turn off the dryer before I left the house. Because our dyer is most likely older than I am, we tend to be careful about that. When I returned, the house had a distinct burn-y air about it. Managed to put the fire out with no damage to anything but the dryer, but now we have no dryer. It's much less fun to sneer at laundry when you are trying to air dry clothes for five people on wet April days. I know you are all breathlessly absorbed in the small details of my life, but this little diversion does have a point: My running stuff was in the washer.

Lonely Teardrops

I don't think I actually cried about it. It's not like I am super excited to run. After the saga of the washing machine two months ago I really, really don't want to think about how we are going to replace the dryer. Women do not go jogging, running or otherwise seriously exercising without adequate Suppression, and now I could look forward to beginning damp and clammy. I thought really hard about the chocolate ice cream in the freezer (which I did not buy) and called a friend instead. This is the same friend who graciously let me use her washer during the Great Washer Rebuilt of 2012. To her immense credit she didn't even hint that she was apprehensive that I might grovel to use her dryer.

Keeping Clam(my)

I used my hairdryer to get the bra to the level where I wasn't shuddering to have it on my body. Dear Husband came home and suited up, we set off down the road. Three steps into the 20 minutes run time I wanted to stop. I was just done. Music was not helping, not even the big guns. Dear Husband was so far down the road I couldn't objectify him with my eyes. I resented it. I resented his faster pace. I resented that I was out on this stupid road, in stupid drizzle, with stupid damp underwear. If I could have tripped him I would have. I was not a nice person at all.
I didn't indulge in my usual inward conversation, I just seethed angrily all the way down the road. I'd drop out of the jog and walk 5 steps then jog some more. We reached the half way point and turned around and I just wanted to kick something and scream but I had save it all up for the stupid trip back. About 3/4 of the way through the run I hit a rhythm and realized that I didn't have enough energy to run and be angry at the same time. So I just ran. I can't say I am happy, but I got through it.

Drip Dry

In the words of Scarlett O'Hara: "I can't think about that right now. I think about that tomorrow."

Monday, April 9, 2012

Rainbow Cake Strikes Back

 Today I went to mooch free coffee and pray at a friend's house while Dear Husband went to a doctor's appointment in town.  To prove this woman is a soul sister she commended my running and gave me a big slab of rainbow cake.  I had to eat it: it looked like a rainbow, it was too happy NOT to eat.

I did this knowing of course, this is the week thing begin stepping up with every run.  Today was 8 minutes of running per run session.  I was feeling alright during the first eight minutes, breathing deeply, no dry heaves eminent.  I trotted down the street behind the Dear Husband watching him wrestle with the dog bouncing into the  brush on the side of the road.

He turned onto Rhodie Trail and I realized I had managed to jog the whole length of Jacobs, a personal best.  We entered the first walk portion of the run which is when the cake decided it no longer wanted to house itself in the belly of a woman who could run all the way down Jacobs road.  Turning, I swallowed hard, breathed through my nose and spoke sternly to myself.

I gave myself to the end of the song, judged that our walk period was almost over, and began the slog back down the road.  I reveled in the few moments that I was in front of the Dear Husband.  Pretty soon the dog was passing me and then his Man.  He got far enough down the road that he was nice an blurry in front of me.

The Cake retreated in defeat.  Victorious.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Still Alive

This Was a Triumph

Today was the day the program got serious. No more itty-bitty three minute run periods, only 5 minutes on from here. I fully expected to be crying shamelessly a third of the way through today. The fact that I neither started crying or dry heaving is a nothing short of a miracle.

I'm Making a Note Here: Huge Success

We planned a new route today: up Jacobs, down Rhodie Trail to Terry Rd., down Terry to Ft. Casey, Ft. Casey to home. This route has the added benefit of running down the hill at Terry. Quite an improvement over the hills we ran UP in Bethany while on vacation. (An unfairness I am still peeved with - Why did we run UP HILL on Vacation?!) The sun was shining on the pink blossoms of the plum trees lining the yard, while fog lingered on the water. My favorite kind of spring morning - one I usually enjoy with 3 cups of coffee and a token nod at the laundry pile.

The laundry pile got a sneer and I updated the run mix. Then we got out to the run. Immediately the usual running irritants showed up: wedgie: check, headphones falling out of ears: check, headphone cords pulling on coat: check, small flying insect trying to fly into my mouth: check, mouth full of saliva (I am not hungry to eat that bug no matter how much I crave protein), check. Fortunately I had my running ace in the hole queued up, with the intent to cycle back to it as many times as I need. So I began with M.W. Smith.

As we began the second run portion down Rhodie Trail I began to stumble. My legs had decided they were done. I scolded them and fumbled at the iPod to jump up to another song. By some happy chance I landed on Suitcases by Dara Maclean. Thank you Christine Chittim, yet another ideal running song. Not only can you not run well holding suitcases as the lyrics say, but it is also difficult running with 30 extra pounds. (30 is what I said and I am sticking with it. The scale and I are not friends. I find it judgemental, unlike my coffee cup which is always there for me.)

By the time we hit Terry and were on our last run portion and the iPod kicked up Deep in Love With You. While it was probably the down hill aspect, I had no trouble running the last run portion. My legs began burning as I rounded the corner to Engle Farm. I saw Dear Husband begin to walk but I decided to finish the song running. After that I didn't want to walk the rest of the way home, but because I couldn't call a car service, didn't quite need an ambulance, and sadly Waaaambulances are not a real thing, I resigned myself to walking.

It's Hard to Overstate My Satisfaction

The small rise up Rusty to our house was more tiring than the rest of the run put together. Hills are only fun on the way down them.

Run Mix: God Be Merciful to Me - Jars of Clay, Healing Rain - Michael W Smith, God Almighty - Chris Tomlin, Suitcases - Dara Maclean, Save Tonight - Eagle Eye Cherry, Deep in Love With You, I Am Love, Come to the Cross - Michael W Smith, With Everything - Hillsong

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Hello Dolly!

That Big Band Sound

Nothing like Bobby Darin and a big band number to help you drag your weary carcass home from a run those last few steps. You really need the trumpets modulating up a half step to cross the finish line so to speak. I would have sashayed into the house to the final drumbeats and cymbal clashes, but sashaying takes too much energy and I had to make do with an exhausted stumble.

Guerillas in the Mist - "Go - Guer. HUGE Difference"

We left this morning and it was that nice mistiness which is not quite rain; it just bathes your flushed face. I knew that we would be running the same hills as on Monday and wouldn't you know it, but our pace was hitting the hills right at the run times rather than the walk times in the workout. Fortunately, the rug sharks were not out today. They wouldn't attack us from the sidelines as passed. We only saw two other people during our labors: one other jogger with two happy huskies and one older walker.

We saw the walker at the half way point. Dear Husband and I had given each other a leaden high five and he walked past smiling hugely. I took it as encouragement rather than mockery. Anytime you see a fat person huffing and puffing in torturous exercise they need all the encouragement they can get.

I Dream of Junk Food

I really want a doughnut. I need a sugar and fat injection like a junkie needs a fix. I had visions of a Boston Cream, haunting me. I keep thinking that all I have to do is drive five minutes down the road and I could inhale it. Give up this crazy running thing and fall back into the natural state of inertia that would allow me to eat a Apple Fritter and not worry about "running it off". I want a Burgerville burger, McDonald's fries, and fish and chips from Ivars. These must all be staved off with Cherry essence prunes in the cupboard. Lucky ME!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Lonesome Valley

You got to go to the Lonesome Valley

I added "Lonesome Valley" by Fairfield Four to my iPod run list. I am not sure why. I must have been feeling especially sorry for myself after the Track Run of Doom. I had forgotten it was on there until it kicked up today during the run. What kind of crazy person runs on vacation? Those married to someone in the grips of a Mania quickly turning into an Interest. Pity Me. I had posited to the Dear Husband that after the long drive to the Mecca of peace and no cooking (read- my mom in law's house - where no dust or soap scum dare encroach), I might be happy to run the next day. Ha ha.

You got to go there by yourself

We started out up a hill. A very non propitious beginning, but I consoled myself with the thought that we would be returning down it and the end of the run. Dear Husband was fussing with widget and iPod. We passed a guy with a golden retriever old enough that eyes and muzzle where white rimmed. It offered a look of patience mixed with mournful acceptance in my direction which a returned with heartfelt sincerity. "Yes, we are accompanying someone because we love them. Yes, the sunshine is nice. Yes, we'd rather enjoy it from a sunny porch with a smackeral of something to eat."

Nobody can go for you

Up and down and all around past many dog walkers. And I mean UP. Dear Husband kept trudging up hills the little engine who could. it seemed all the walking bits of the program were on flat roads and all the running bits were up hill. I felt like that old saw, "When I was a kid I had to walk to school uphill both ways in the snow." Well, I had to run uphill both ways on my vacation - on no coffee. Puff, puff, puff. Drag in Air. Dodge little chihuahua what looked like it was dying to taste my ankles.

We turned for the run back but did not retrace our steps. The promised downhill return slope did not seem like it would materialize. We went past playgrounds and basketball courts. The final run portion began on a steep-ish slope uphill of course. Dear Husband is in front, his glaring white legs chugging along. With mean satisfaction I could see from behind: the slowing pace and the jerk of his head that indicated he was pep talking himself. He got to the top of the hill, and with a quick glance at my struggles on the slope turned the corner behind a fence and kept going.

I got to the top of the hill turned and suddenly found I knew where I was. On the main road and out of the endless maze of the neighborhood cul de sacs, we were close to the end. With a quick adjustment to my music I pulled up Healing Rain and was settling in to the final stretch of run. Right as the music built and swelled, the ground finally sloped downward and I actually stretched out and ran the last minute of the last run portion. I looked like a real runner for 30 seconds.