Saturday, July 24, 2010

Shutting up

So I did Bikram again. It was perhaps not as awesome as the first time, maybe I was less distracted by the newness, and also I suspect the instructor not opening a window or a door periodically (like the first class I did) to air the room out contributed to my vague malaise by making me feel like someone was holding a sweaty sock over my mouth. But! I still felt great at the end and will go back.

Frankly, the hardest part for me is not talking for 90 minutes. So unnatural. Plus there are just so, so many jokes, way moreso than in a normal 90 minute period for me.

Friday, July 23, 2010


Okay, so I am apparently up for anything exercise-wise lately, like learning I can run has made me fearless. Perhaps this is a fallacy, because on Wednesday I got the idea (fueled by my friend Linda suggesting, repeatedly, that I join her) to try Bikram yoga. Bikram, if you're not familiar with it, is yoga done in a room that's at least 100 degrees and (I think?) 40% humidity. The room is ALSO full of extremely sweaty people, and, I learned, guys wearing Speedos. So that was exciting. But! It was fun and I felt great afterward and I'll be going back. My run the morning after was spectacular.

The place I went, Bikram Yoga Nashua, does a first class special where, for the 10$ fee, you get unlimited classes for 10 days. This is waaaaaay cheaper than their normal rates (15$ per class or 10 classes for 110$) so I'm going to try to squeeze in as many as I can while I'm still in the intro period. I may even give up tomorrow's sleep in to go! Shocking.

In other news, my big deal fundraising race approaches at an alarming clip. I got an email with the runner info and man, this thing is run with military precision and security measures. I knew that the Falmouth Road Race was a pretty big deal, but I didn't know it was this big a deal. I am NOT a big deal and will probably finish the race in traffic after they reopen the roads. I will not be passing any of the Kenyans. Unless maybe one of them only has one leg? Probably not even then.

I ran three and a half eh miles in the rain tonight. I just wasn't feeling it. I pretty much shot out the door like someone launched me out of a cannon, though. My little angels had me hearing myself saying, "Don't lick your brother" in public. Repeatedly. And then leaving Costco at a fast, loud clip. Ha. Avert your eyes, fellow Earth dwellers.

Monday, July 19, 2010

I have a new friend.

Her name is Shiny Green Bike.

She is not THIS bike

though the bike shop HAS that bike and I did stroke it lovingly while saying "shiny" to myself.

But my bike friend is the bike that's been making the rounds with me for years. It lived in my storage cubby in Medford (and survived the theft of our wedding gifts we'd stored down there!), in my basement in Melrose, in my garage in Tucson, and now, in my shed in Chelmsford. How many times had I ridden it? Zero times. It needed a tune up and realignment and I am... lacking in skills. At the time I bought the bike, I was also lacking in funds. And then I forgot about it and would see it every time we moved and go, Oh! A bike! And then, in the course of unpacking, I would forget again.

But! Now I'm in the midst of my half marathon training, and every week I see the days that say "40 minutes cross train" and I look around, briefly consider walking on my hands or pretending that the Wii Fit is useful, and go for a walk and feel like I'm cheating. I don't belong to a gym. (We are On a Break, the gym and I.) Then, I remembered the bike! I'd bought my husband a bike rack for his car for Father's Day (He doesn't have an actual bike, it's all very O. Henry), so we loaded that up with my bike and brought it down to the shop for a tune up. One week later and one embarrassing pickup ("Do you have the tag?" No. "What brand is it?" Blank. "What color is it?" Blank. [It's green. I just forgot.]) later, it's back in my arms. And, spanking new helmet on my head, I put the kids to bed, wave a wobbly goodbye to my husband, and take off.

I LOVE IT. So much faster and easier than running, so I can cover way more ground and spy on So Many More people. I am coveting gardens way out of my normal running range, now! And there's a new contender for favorite neighborhood and little house that I want to maybe steal and live in on my own for one 24 hour period per week.

So! Cross training solved. I rode 15 miles this weekend, on top of an almost 7 mile run, and now I feel vaguely dead. But happy anyway!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Bonus photo!

I ran the Chelmsford 4th of July race (on July 5th?) last Monday, and look! Evidence. That's me in the green shirt and the sunglasses. I got major sunscreen in my eyes (it was hot and grosssss) and had to stop to clean them out at one point, but still managed an okay finish.

Those business-meaning stroller pushers in front are my friends Debbie and Jess. Whoo!

PR Territory

So! I have now entered the phase of my training where I'll have a personal record (PR, not just Puerto Rico or public relations for me anymore) pretty much every week. This week, I was supposed to run 5 miles on Sunday but I sort of spazzed out that the weather was cool enough to move at all that I ran 6 instead. Drunk on dew point power, I guess. It was amazingly easier than I expected (I somehow love runs that are more than 4 miles and tend to blah through shorter ones, unless they're REALLY short, like across the back yard.) though I did get lost and the restart from the stop to get directions was rough. I got passed zooooomstyle by someone in multiple knee braces around mile 4. Ha. But then I picked it up later and flew through mile 5, which counts for something.

Ironically, running this race as part of a team that fundraises for Melanoma research, I am spending WAY more time outside in the sun than I normally would during any given summer. I usually eschew the sun as much as possible due to extreme paleness and fear of death. But this has been forcing me outdoors (I have no treadmill) and even with layer upon layer of sunscreen, I miss spots or sweat it off or whatever and end up a bit redder (not horribly so, but skin that would horrify a devoted goth) which fills me with a vague sense of impending doom. I guess my plan is to go earlier and earlier and earlier as the runs get longer and longer, so I'm not in direct sunlight. We'll see how this goes. Getting up early is not a skill of mine so far. 5 months ago, though, neither was running.

Which brings me to my tally! I've logged 180 miles since I started. This leaves 20 to go until my next scheduled donut. These every 50 miles donuts run the risk of being highly built up and therefore eh, BUT! Top Donut in Lowell is up to the challenge, I am sure of it.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Confessions of an Epic Spaz

So. I sort of walked right into a door on Tuesday. Hilariously, I had just checked my email and discovered that I'd passed my fund raising goal and was headed to the phone to call my husband and make him not work for a few minutes while I peppered him with excited exclamatory statements, which he would feign excitement about while making yakkity-yack explanatory hand gestures at his co-workers so they'd know it was me calling. But, between the computer and the phone I met my nemesis: a partially open door. So I spastically walked right into it, making a normal step into a toe-killing, Street Fighter-style Chun-Li "Ya Ta!" sort of situation, except without the exuberance and triumph, and with vision going black and lots of bad words floating around in head instead.

A visit to the doctor at least revealed that it wasn't broken, but I was instructed to rest it through the weekend. So my first bit back on the pavement will be the Chelmsford 4th of July (which will take place on the 5th of July this year) 2 mile road race. I'm itching about all the training I'm missing, it's all snowballing in my head and I'll end up with this giant mass of mileage to make up (4 miles, 4 miles, 2 miles, 40 minutes of cross training, rest day [check], 6 miles!) Ack!

In other, pre-door smash news, I ran the Gate City Striders Summer Trail Series 5K on Monday night and it was great. The weather was hot soup, but the trail was shady and leafy and nice, and the volunteers were great and my friend Debbie was there for company (though she gazelled the 5 miles so we didn't run together.) My time was eh (32:18) but in that weather, and the first time on the course (I would have sped it up at the end if I'd known I was almost there!) I'll take it for sure. And I will definitely be back, Monday nights at 6:30 through the summer.