Running. With BlueBuds.


6:10 am.  70° F.  Humidity: 100%.  Thick.  A mood dampener.

After an unexpected, unexplainable and unacceptable two-pound jump last week, Gadget Man replaced the seven-year old bathroom scale. I don’t need to wait three seconds of interminable flashing to see my test scores.  If you aren’t getting results, replace the equipment. Pull the band-aid off and hit me.

The new scale is sweet.  I step on the scale and it snaps to attention.  No waiting, no flashing, no bad scores.  This morning, this incredible technology signalled that I was a mere one pound higher than the challenge target, with another month to go.  Now we’re talking.

Yet, what a miserable journey this has been.  Rationing ice cream.  Mouth salivating for pasta.  A 3-cookie daily portion limit. People, this is not living.  And the real question is whether this is sustainable.

This morning, I’m determined to drive this weight down.  Way down below target to give me cushion. In one run.

My head is saying: 10 miles.
My body: Groaning. [Read more…]

T.G.I.F.: Yes, your work day will be filled with bliss


Related Posts: T.G.I.F.: 5:00 p.m. Bell! (Jim Carrey)

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T.G.I.F.: 5:00 p.m. Bell!

Jim Carey,laugh, TGIF, T.G.I.F.

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Running with E.T. August Logs.

E.T. - The Extra Terrestrial

6:00 am, August 4, 2013: 60F. Gentle morning breeze: 3 MPH. Spectacular day for a run. I’m off. Thoughts chattering. Legs pumping but heavy. Thighs stiff. Bottoms of feet tender. All aches emanating from yesterday’s run. Marquis whispers: “Middle age is the time when a man is always thinking that in a week or two he will feel as good as ever.” Yep, that’s about right.

5:30 am, August 4, 2013: Morning weigh in. 60 days left in the Biggest Loser Challenge. I expect a bad outcome. Expectations realized. Loser! Weight: Back up 1.8. And this after yesterday’s grueling 6-mile, rain-soaking trail run with the wolf pack — slopping around in wet woods, dancing on slippery rocks, and sinking in gooey mud. Somehow escaping injury. Rambo. No, Chubby Rambo. I step (waddle) off the scale in disgust. It’s all about intake and yesterday’s feedings.* So Mr. Lewis**, when? When do I learn?

7:30 pm, August 1, 2013: Rachel returns home from work. Dragging. In a mood. She runs upstairs. Comes down. Attired in florescent, glow-in-the-dark green shorts. Matching shoes. Ear buds in. iPhone in hand. Styling!

“I’m off for a run.”
“Wait, I’m coming with you.”
“No Dad. I would rather go alone.”
“NO, I’m coming.”
“NO Dad. I don’t want you to come. I’m not interested in running a time trial.”
“Rachel, you stand right here and wait. I mean WAIT.”

She waits. We go. Road narrows. Evening traffic heavy. I slow to let her pull in front and we run single file. Her hair tightly wrapped in a single braid which bounces up and down in the center of her back. She has a graceful, confident stride. In contrast, my legs are heavy – – long day at work… 3.5 plates of pasta for dinner…laboring to keep up. I’m breathing heavy.

[Read more…]

Running. Man and Running Dog.


6:50 am. 67F. 87% humidity. Mom’s gone for the weekend visiting family.  Zeke’s not happy.  Mom walks him every day.  Every single day.  Three times a day.  2 1/2 hours a day.  Daily routine – I wave to them from the couch as they head out the door.  This morning, he’s out of sync.  Discombobulated.  He sees me gearing up for a run.  He scrambles into his cage and lies down.  He’s knows what’s coming.  I grab him by his collar and drag him out of his cage.  He snarls, baring his teeth.  (I don’t need this sh*t. I don’t want to go either but we’re going.  Pure Bred Running Dog who hates running.  Owner is carrying him to the car.  What a picture this is.  He looks me in the eye – not a happy look.  I glare back.)  I shift his weight to my left and pull him tightly to my chest to free up my right hand.  I reach for the door handle of the car.  And, pull my lower back.  And grimace.  Oh, boy.  I open the door.  Heave him into the back seat.  And curse.

I fire up the car.  Shift uncomfortably in the seat.  Lower back.  Hmmmmm.

I back the car out of the garage.  Zeke climbs from the back seat to the front.  And starts licking my face.  “Sit down.  No bloody kisses. (He knows that I’m pi**ed.) He sits down in the passenger seat. His seat.  And sulks.

And we’re off.  Mianus Park. Plan: 5-Mile Trail Run. We arrive at the Park, leash up, and walk through the entrance.  He pulls back on the leash and lies down on the bridge.  He will not move.  He will not accept a treat.  (Oh, yes.  A test of wills.  Just what I need.)

Another dog owner walks by.  One older German Shepard Mix.  Another is a happy looking mutt with tail wagging furiously.  (Did she just give me that look?  Like, how’s that pure bred workin’ out for ya?)

I stop pulling on his leash.  He’s now lounging, looking down at the river below.  (How many shades of humiliation are there?)

I decide to pull a Mom and talk nicely to him.  “Come on buddy.  Let’s go for a nice walk in the woods.  Come on.  Let’s go.”  (Oh, for God’s sake.  I can’t do this.  Is this what I’ve come to?  Man-up.  206 lbs of fighting machine against this 70 lb beast and he’s got the upper hand.  No chance.)

I look at him.  He looks up at me.  His tail swishing on the bridge deck.  (Is he smiling? Could this be funny?)

“You are going to come.  Right now. And run.”  (Our last visit to this Park was not a great show.  And an Elephant never forgets.  And this one has a plan.  I will not let him off leash to have him lie down in the grass at the bottom of the hill forcing me to back track.  No sir.  Not me.  I will drag him for five miles, if that’s what it takes.) [Read more…]

Running. With Howie.


8:24 am. 74F. 66% humidity. Late jump. Two capsules of Nyquil Flu & Cold down the gullet the night before. Slept like a baby. This morning, I’m woozy. After five consecutive days of 96F+ scorchers and too much in-doors time, I needed to get out.

I’m off. Head in a fog. How is it possible to have a head cold in the middle of a July heat wave?

Mind whirrs to Howie Mandel. Comic. Actor. Host of NBC’s “Deal or No Deal.” Howie’s fear of germs. His fist bumps instead of hand shakes. His book titled: “Here’s the Deal: Don’t Touch Me.”

I’m at Mile 1. I start sizing the GERM opportunity. A quick week in review:

  • Grand Central Station: 750,000 commuters a day. 1000’s of hands touching my exit door, all spilling out into Manhattan.
  • MetroNorth: 1000’s of touches on each stainless steel handrail we grip to hold steady while the train lurches to and fro.
  • Lunch. Food particles in the cracks on table. Water spots (one hopes) on spoon. Table top has a light sheen from being wiped with dish towel, after 7 other tables. Grab water glass, warm to touch, soap smell mixed with heavy chlorinated water. Rapid table turnover = > cash flow.
  • Bathroom. Hundreds of touches on the door handle a day. (Did your Mamma teach you to wash your hands after going to potty?)
  • Taxi cab doors and window handles. Office door handles. Elevator buttons. Conference room tables. Arm rests on chairs.

Do I grab the handle high, or grab it low, as most grab the middle? Or lean on door with shoulder? Or slide jacket sleeve over hand? Or, do I surreptitiously slow my pace to let another open the door in front of me?

And from these touches, a frictionless hand-off to my pen, my blackberry, my phone and my computer keyboard. Hand to nose to face to mouth. The germ baton is passed on; a leaf in the wind, a feather in the air, all silently and deadly landing on yet another unsuspecting prey.

But the moment that sticks is a split second decision to shake a hand prior to the kick-off of a meeting. A natural reflex. A custom. A greeting. A courtesy.
[Read more…]

Running. With Moobs.


5:00 am. 75F. 89% humidity. Need to get a jump on the heat. Weatherman calling for 91F by noon. It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity. Right. (Bullsh*t.) I’m off.

Feeling good. Three consecutive days of running. Not bad. Yet, a bigger deal? Avoiding all food intake after 7pm last night. Now, this, this, was a major accomplishment. A single break in habit. A lifetime of four more-than-square meals a day. Breakfast. Lunch. Dinner. Bed-Time Snack. (A hard Pivot? A Break? Hmmmmm. More like a kink in a fire hose. Or overnight bout of constipation. Dam will burst. It’s just a question of when. And it won’t be pretty.) But…let’s focus on the positive here. Six days into my Biggest Loser Campaign and the trend is my friend.
[Read more…]

Running. With Marc and Eddy Verbessem.

Identical Twins, Euthanasia, Belgium

5:30 am.  59F. Birds up and singing in all their glory.  It’s still.  Very still.

I put on my Adidas running shorts.  Rachel’s scolding from months back surfaces: “I can see your tan line.  They’re too short.  Those are Perv Shorts.  Embarrassing. Go change.”  I growl.   Now, each time I put them on, I’m thinking Perv-Man.  Words. Killer.  What a delicate flower.

What do you want to do for Father’s Day Dad?
I’d like to be left alone for the day.
Yes, if you could arrange for me to be sitting alone next to Thoreau, at Walden Pond, listening in on his thoughts, that would be a perfect Sunday.”
“Who? What?”
Forget it Honey.  Forget it.”
Have to say Dad, you have to stop your incoherent mumbling.” [Read more…]

Running. With Better Than…


It’s Saturday. 5:30 am.  45F. Drizzling.

Zeke is up early.  Which means his keeper (Susan) is too.  She’s at the kitchen table sipping coffee and reading The Times.  He’s looking up at her, being cute, sitting like Royalty, waiting for a hand-out.  It’s Banana today.  Dog loves bananas.  Who knew?

He watches me warily.  It has become the weekend routine.  He sits between his Mom’s legs.  Growls at me. Signaling, No way in H*ll I’m going out with you. No Way.  Fur is up at the back of his neck.  I approach. “Let’s go Bud. Let’s go for a run.”  He shows me his teeth…and emits a low raspy growl. And then another. Yep.  Pure bred running dog.  This is what it’s come to.

On with the gear.  Accessories first. Garmin GPS.  iPod. Ear Phones. Water bottle into black waist pouch. Then on with the suit.  Black running pants. Black rain slicker.  Black Baseball cap (not water proof). Red and Black Brooks running shoes.  Batman is ready.  The Dark Knight Rides.  He’s off.

Mile One.  It’s drizzling.  But manageable.  Light rain and mist.  Feels refreshing on the skin.  Miles.  I’m going to do Miles today. [Read more…]

Monday Morning Wake-Up Call: One time only.

bird, photography,bald eagle, eagle,,black and white

Image Source for Juvenile Bald Eagle: Thank you (again) Fairy-Wren

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