Friday, July 30, 2010

Really, I Really Was Not Born to Run. No Kidding.

According to my workout-o-meter, the last time I worked out was March 25. That is all lies and calumny, of course.

Between then and now I have taken a few bike rides, run/walked a few miles, and taken a few P90x classes at work.

But nothing to write home about.

Or write a blog post about.

I can't believe I ran this only in January.

Back then, I looked 13.1 miles in the face and laughed. Ho! Ho! Ho!

Who's laughing now, eh mon amie??

But in a not-so-triummphant return, this week I laced up my running shoes three times.

THREE.

TIMES.

As in, THRICE.

I am lucky to be finally living in a place where I can walk out my door and turn any which way for a great run. Past the National Cathedral, Cactus Cantina, or up to American University.

If only I could actually run, this would be ideal.

I am back to run/walking. And up to a grand total of: three miles.

In case you were wondering what would happen if you take some time off from running, this is what happens.

You kind of just lose it.

You get to start all over again.

It's fun!

Almost as fun as being a really slow runner!

Which I was kind of getting over.

I shall return, my friends.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Once Upon a Time, There Was a Blog...

...in a land far away, called Not Born to Run.

A lot has happened since we last shared a post.

First, our long national nightmare is finally over. I have been wanting to move since, oh, forever, and have been dutifully trudging around the city looking at apartments since, well, forever. There was something not quite right with each one. Too small, too low (ceilinged), too light-challenged, too desolate, too soul-less, too college-student-y, too expensive, too scary. You name it, I saw it.

I started with quite a list of non-negotiable criteria. 1. Must have fireplace. 2. Must be on Capitol Hill. 3. Must be near Metro. 5. Must have loads of light. 6. Must have hardwood floors! 7. Kitchen not horrible! Etc.

Well, gradually I gave things up. First to go was the fireplace. Then I jettisoned the neighborhood. Much as I love Capitol Hill, I just wasn't finding what I wanted there.

I subscribed to several Craigslist RSS apartment searches in my Google reader, and checked them, oh, about 20,000 times every day. Soon, I eliminated all criteria, and ended up just looking for a place that felt like home.

I knew I would know it when I saw it, and finally, I did. A place on Wisconsin Ave., NW D.C.:

Washington National Cathedral

No, seriously.

I am directly across the street from the National Cathedral!!

Does it get any cooler???

So the plan is this: Sell pretty much everything I own, clean my place within an inch of its life, and rent it out.

In ten days.

Sigh.

Running, you ask? Triathlon? Eagleman??

We'll get to that. Soon. Really.

Meanwhile, I wrote myself an e-mail with everything that's currently on my plate, to keep from losing my mind. Here's what's on it:

  • research and buy car (yes, old car is pretty much dying)
  • buy new computer (ditto, computer!)
  • get zero percent credit card (Done, yay!)
  • transfer discover credit card balance to 0 percent (can't do this til new card comes, since I lost the old card)
  • consulting proposal (yes, I've been approached to do some consulting! done!)
  • Write "10 things you can do to save the environment" one pager for my church's environment committee (done!)
  • call ferguson and ask where to send excess volunteers, plus ask about how/where to transport trash after cleanup (done! I am leading a cleanup of a tributary of Rock Creek for my church's environment committee)
  • get info in sunday flyer for cleanup (done!)
  • ENDLESS APT SEARCH (SO DONE!)
  • Get more boxes (ongoing)
  • Pack (started!)
  • Take photos of stuff I want to sell (which is pretty much everything), get on craigslist (started! you need a couch? or a daybed? Let's talk.)
  • Replace chandelier in dining table (John. (more on this))
  • Paint bedrooms (So. Not. Done.)
  • Clean out storage unit in richmond (I've had a storage unit for 12 years. I haven't looked at it in 12 years.)
  • Get new storage unit in bethesda (not started, can't think about this)
  • Do performance evals (oh man, am I late with this)
  • Read why boys fail so can talk intelligently when attend book party (excellent book, highly recommend it!)
  • BLOG--do something with it (ha ha ha ha)
  • Essay--decide on class (I took a writing class to polish my essay for Modern Love. It needs more help.)
  • Revise essay (perennial)
  • get tix for boston (my adorable friend Petra is running Boston! Yay!)
  • TAXES (sigh)

So you see? There are reasons why I am MIA.

My running is minimal. Twice a week, but that's better than nothing, right? Swimming once a week. Biking? Well, maybe there will be more now that the weather has changed.

But Eagleman?

After long and hard soul searching, and endless griping to friends (thanks, Becky!), I have decided it is just not to be this year.

I'm not happy about bagging it.

I'm not happy about paying for three months of Team Z, and not doing one single thing with them.

But, sometimes life just intervenes.

The things that are happening in my life are good and positive. I could be dropping out because I was injured. But thankfully, that's not the case.

And, there's possibly one other little itty bitty thing worth mentioning: A boy.

There's a boy.

It would be easy to say that he is diverting my attention away from my training. And you know what? That would be quite true.

But.

Sometimes in life, one must just go for what is in front of one.

I am going for this.

It's quite literally terrifying.

I don't know what will happen. Who can ever know?

All I know is: I'm happy when I'm with him. And I think I make him happy too.

May we all find such joy in life.

Your kind thoughts and prayers are much appreciated.

Mood = Happy!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Coldest Half-Marathon Ever

Texas Half Marathon, (somewhere in Dallas), January 30, 2010, age 52
2:36:34, 11:57 min./mile (7/15)

It started innocently enough.

"We should go somewhere warm in January, " I said to Number One Daughter back in November '09.

"Yay!," she retorted. "I know, let's run a half-marathon with Runner Susan! Down South! In Texas! Where it's warm!"

"Deal!"

So, off we went to meet the inimitable Runner Susan, whom I have known virtually, for, well, I don't know how long I've known her. (I just searched my gmail, and the earliest e-mail from her is April 2006. I think we first started getting to know each other when she wrote for CompleteRunning (a site I used to edit, which is sadly, now dormant).)

Susan is a highly talented writer and Web designer, and just the funniest and funnest friend I had never met.

Anywho, so NOD and I booked a trip and down to Dallas we went, expecting, well, WARM.

As in HEAT.

Cuz last time I looked, TEXAS was a bit further SOUTH than say, Boston. Or Maine. Or even D.C.

We got to Dallas airport at 11 p.m.-ish, and darling Susan was there to pick us up. Right before we got to her car, I whispered to Deirdre, "Oh what if this is awkward??"

Cuz you know...we had NEVER met. It could be the worst, longest, and most expensive blind date in my checkered dating history.

Two seconds after climbing into the Soozemobile, though, it was just like coming home.

Like we'd known each other for ages. Like we were reuniting after not seeing each other since high school (where I would have been her teacher, since she's a few years cough younger than I am).

But anyway, the point is: It was easy.

Susan is delightful. Her family is delightful. Specifically, her CHEF is delightful.

NOD, Chef. They are tight.

We stayed with Susan Friday through Sunday, and somewhere in the middle there, Susan and I ran the Coldest Half-Marathon ever (AKA the Texas Freaking Half-Marathon).

I have seriously never been so cold in my life. And I'm from New England. I've lived in Boston. I know from cold.

The course wound around what I'm sure is a lovely scenic lake at some time of the year.

A lake.

With water in it.

That somehow generated wind.

That blew in my face.

Constantly.

As I ran in a circle.

Which meant?

The wind was changing direction just to mess with me.

Number One Daughter ran into some trouble with her training (as in: forgot to do it), so ran the 5k instead. She brought this guy with her.



And here's how she did:
13/25 in females 20-25, 21:15.

(Well, so say the results anyway, and we know they never lie.)

And then there was moi.

Did I mention I was cold??

The race announcer said afterwards that with the windchill the temperature was -2° Fahrenheit (-18.88° Celsius).

By mile 2 I was in serious face pain, which was good because it took my mind off the cramp in my right calf. I was (as always!) contemplating a DNF.

Susan and I started together but she took off after, oh, 2 minutes, and I didn't see her again until mile 11 when she passed me heading toward the finish, while I headed on a dogleg away from it, yelling, "You're almost there," the universal lie reviled by all racers. Susan, seriously??

Somehow, don't ask me how, I managed to will myself around that freaking lake. I had my iPod and listened to two episodes of This American Life.

The crowd was small and I was quickly at the back, but surprisingly, I was not alone. And I wasn't last!!

I lurched from mile to mile, just willing myself through.

At mile 7, the cramp in my calf started screaming. I stopped and stretched. And then carried on.

Cuz that's how we roll.

We had many other adventures, involving taking 100,000 photos, clothes, shopping, wine, a total makeover, eating, and clothes, but that will have to wait for another day.

Old friends, bookends.

Final time:

7. Texas Half Marathon, January 30, 2010, age 52
2:36:34, 11:57 min./mile (7/15)

6. Fredericksburg Blug Gray Half, Dec. 13, 2009, age 52
02:42:10 12:22 min./mile (19/19)

5. Fredericksburg Blue Gray Half, Dec. 15, 2008, age 51
2:28:43 11:21 min./mile (10/10)

4. National Half, March 29, 2008 age 51
2:31:57 11:36 min./mile (48/53)

3. Fredericksburg Blue Gray Half, Dec. 9, 2007 age 50
2:34:26 11:47/min (8/9)

2. Philadelphia Distance Run, September 16, 2007 age 50
2:38:06 12:04 min./mile (221/303)

1. Parks Half Marathon, September 24, 2006 age 49
2:38:15 12:05 min./mile (55/64)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Texas-Bound

I'm off to Dallas to visit Runner Susan, go shopping, drink wine, get a Runner-Susan makeover, drink more wine, visit the hot tub, then drive to Austin for a haircut (no, seriously), visit Little Miss Runner Pants, and, oh why not, find love.

Oh yes, and run.

Stay out of trouble while I'm gone.

I hear they like big hair in Texax.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Is This Thing On?

I joined Team Z. I am all IN for Eagleman. IN!

I joined (and went to first workout!) the Montgomery County Road Runners Speed Development Clinic, which I also did last year. It's a b***-buster, but it works.

I signed up for (and went to class #1) on "Writing the Personal Essay."

So. Is this what mania feels like??

(And just for the record, I am not now, nor have I ever been, nor will I ever be, involved with the gentleman below. He's just some arm candy, people. It is entirely possible, however, that there is a crush going on in my life. I am too much of a lady to say more.)

I am also IN TRAINING to meet Runner Susan on Jan. 30 (not so much in training for the half-mary we're doing.) Training for the RS event mainly involves drinking lots of wine, which I have well under control. I am also in training for the sidetrip to Austin to see Little Miss Runnerpants. I'm not sure what I should be doing for that. Brushing up on my karaoke skills??

Blogland is a wonderful place!

I am off to New York City for the weekend.

Things are looking up.

I am in love with this song. I want to marry it.