Running. With Planks.

Planking-Baby

6:02 am. Sunday, October 19, 2014. 52° F. Breezy. Autumn.

Mind rolls back to yesterday afternoon. Saturday at 4pm, and my body was signaling late Sunday. The heaviness of Work returned early, a thick Bay Area Fog. (Where’s my weekend?) I’m on a JetBlue flight heading South on Sunday afternoon to catch Monday morning meetings.

I’m ten pounds up from my six-month low. Ten pounds! My last running post was Sept 7th. My last run outside was Sept 14th. Over one month ago, and THAT run is still fresh. I glance at my notes from that day:

Garmin flashing 0.72 miles. Stomach cramps. They will work themselves out. Just slow it down. Keep your feet moving. 0.78 miles. Legs moving, body is haunched over. 0.80 miles. Pain ripping through left calf. I moan, stop and clutch my leg. No Mas. I turn and return home. To the couch.

I decide to break my pre-run routine. (Which, besides complaining about running, is to do nothing, but get out the door.)

I get down on my knees. I’m thinking 1 Plank. I position my iPhone stopwatch where I can see it. I take a deep breath in preparation.  (My blogger friends are deep under my skin. Bone deep.  If Lori can do three two-minute planks in one work-out and Carolann can do a four-minute plank, this is just a matter of practice, right? And, last time I checked, I’m a Man, right?)

I get in planking position. I’ll knock one of these off before my run, and then have something to write about when I return. I’m glaring at the stopwatch. (I’ll show them.)

25 sec.
(Think I got this.)

35 sec.
(Breathing a bit heavy, but I’m just finding my groove.) [Read more...]

SMWI*: Let’s go for a run

cool-gif-koala-running-funny-weird


Koala goes for a morning run…Get those knees up!


Notes: SMWI* = Saturday morning workout inspiration. Source: themetapicture.com. Thank you Susan.

Running. As a Witness.

head down,tired, fatigued

R. Dass: “Everything changes once we identify with being the witness to the story, instead of the actor in it.

6:31 am. September 6, 2014.

76° F.  Humid.

He’s wearing black shorts, above the knee.

He has two bands on his left wrist. Both black. A Garmin GPS, tracking time and distance. A Vivo Fit, another Garmin tool, tracking his step count.  His head bobs, no, it tics, checking progress on his devices every 30-40 seconds.

His shirt is canary yellow, sleeveless. The sweat stains are darkening his shirt, spilled black ink creeping down his chest.

His running shoes are off-the-shelf new, with hyper-green florescent laces, tied with symmetrical bows on each foot.

His head is down but for the presence of oncoming traffic, when he’ll steal a look up, and offer a wave to the driver who gives him wide berth.

He’s heavy footed. Solemn. A hulking, Dutch plow horse, blinders blocking out peripheral vision. The furrows behind him, turned and plowed over and under and over again. [Read more...]

Running. A bucket in the rain.

running-path-mountains

6:01 am.

Crickets. Birds. And me.

Humidity 90%, but cut by a cool morning, 57º. Running weather.

I check my exercise log. Last running entry: August 3rd. I scan the page. More white space than entries. Ray is down 36 lbs in 7 weeks. I’m, well, you know, Up. And, staring at white spaces.

I’m out the door.

It’s Thursday. Evening.
(Another) last supper with the kids before they depart. It’s a short week, I’m off from work on Friday. Heaviness lifts. Weariness lingers. Gratitude drifts in. A peaceful, easy feeling sets in over dinner. Family. Our family dines together.

It’s Friday. Morning.
Departure Day.
Eric comes up to the attic. “Why are you a hermit, Dad?”
We exchange fist bumps. As he turns, I jump him from behind and we wrestle. He’s become unmanageable. I pull up before things break, on me.

It’s Friday. Early afternoon.
We’re in the car to JFK.
President Obama visits Weschester County on Friday afternoon – the same Friday kicking off the long Labor Day weekend. His security team has shut down I-95, 287 and all major thorough ways, snarling traffic. The result: A 2.5 hour drive to JFK. Purpose of the President’s trip: Fundraisers. [Read more...]

SMWI*: Get up Dad. Get up. Let’s go for a walk.

dog-funny-wake-gif


Notes: SMWI*=Saturday Morning Work-out Inspiration. Image Source: gifak.net

I Love New Research

Print


Steps for Longevity: A recent study has found that running for just five minutes a day, even at a slow pace, has similar health benefits to running for longer periods.


Source: wsj.com

Running. With Sticks.

drum-gif-smash

6:30 am.

Mid-July, and it’s 63º F. Overcast. Low humidity.

PULL UP THE DAMN DOUBLE-DECKER GRATITUDE BUS.

I’m out the door. And down the highway.

I’m flicking through my playlist. James Taylor. Click. Bonnie Raitt. Click. Bryan Adams. WarmerClick. David Sanborn. Cool down, maybe. Click. Sara McLachlan. Animal Cruelty Videos. Click. Click. Jimmy Buffet. Margaritaville. NO. CLICK.  

And then, AC-DC.

And THEN, AC-DC.

THUNDERSTUCK. Sound of the drums beating my heart.

Block: Morning weigh-in. Re-grip the sticks…and Swing.
Block: Heavy legs. Re-grip the sticks…and Pound.
Block: Lack of sleep. Re-grip…and Slam.
Block: Work. WORK. Re-grip, unleash and Pulverize ‘em.

Time Check: 6.12 miles @ 55.08 minutes.

Nap Time.


Notes:

Running. With Gremlins.

running-black and white

6:00 am. 60º F. Light breeze. A Runner’s paradise. I’m out the door.

Mood Check: On a continuum of Bliss on the right and Rage on the left, the needle is twitching left of center.

It is said that, today, we live in a secular society, believing in worldly, non-religious, non-spiritual “things.” Just look at me. Every morning when I step on the scale…no matter what caloric catastrophe I engaged in the day before, I believe our Taylor 7506 Digital Scale is going to deliver.  This morning, was just another morning.  My cup runneth over. With belief.

A deep breath. A pause. One step up. Then the other. The digital read-out comes to life. Gremlins scurrying around with their algorithms. They’re flicking in a range from 208.5 to 207.8 and back. Why do you think they flick in a range? They didn’t use to flick in a range. Belly jiggling, so they can’t lock on? My eyes get large. They settle on 208.3. DAMN IT.

Ten pounds up in less than 60 days. If God was Good…If God was Great, this wouldn’t be so damn difficult. I’m drowning in temptation. Cereal. Danishes. Fruit and Cheese filled croissants. Ice cream. Pasta. And that was just yesterday. It’s raining on me.

And by now, you know what comes next: PENANCE. [Read more...]

SMWI*: The Dolomites


The Lavaredo Ultra Trail Race is 119 km long (73 miles) and 5,850 meters (3.64 miles) of altitude gain. The race starts from the center of Cortina in the southern Alps in Northern Italy. There were ~600 participants coming from all over the world for a race that embraces the most spectacular places of the Dolomites: the Crystal, the Tofane, Cinque Torri, and of course the Three Peaks. The winner was Anton Krupicka from the United States who finished in 12 hrs: 42 min: 31 sec. (10.44 minute avg per mile.) The top finisher for the Women was Rory Bosio from the United States who finished in 14 hrs: 29 min: 35 sec. (11.9 min avg per mile.) (Source: ultra trail.it)

SMWI* = Saturday Morning Work-out Inspiration


SMWI*: Weight Loss Tips

weight loss,diet,  diet,exercise,food,weight loss,fitness,funny


Source: chikita banana. SMWI*=Saturday Morning Work-out Inspiration

Running. Because I can’t stop.

gif-funny-cartoon-eating-diet

Wednesday: 2 am. A knife stabbing the muscle in the right calf. I’m gripping the iron railing on the headboard. And pointing my toes. (Susan’s remedy. I’ve always thought it was Bullsh*t, yet here I am pointing my toes.) I’m writhing in pain. Cramp. Zeke awakens, rolls over and starts licking my face, I’ll save you Dad! Dog mung-mouth-sleep-breath — I’m snorting ammonia. The bed is rolling like a stormy sea – yet, Susan is not moved. She stirs, but doesn’t wake. The entire team carries Lebron off the floor with his leg-cramps, and I don’t even get a: “Are you ok?” Where’s the empathy here people?

Thursday: 3 pm. Work meeting. Same leg. Same calf. Pitch fork stab. Cramp. I’m gripping the arms of the chair. Eyes are gushing water. I drop my head to take notes to avoid eye contact. Meeting ends. I walk up the stairs alone, limping, and heaving. Hydration? Vitamin deficiency? Sleep deprivation? Hunger?

Saturday: 4 am. Feelin’ large. I step on the scale. NO! Just.Can’t.Be. NFW! I strip off t-shirt and underwear – – I might be carrying extra poundage in my shorts. I get back on the scale – it wobbles – and falls 0.2 lbs. Pathetic! I move to the mirror. I see a six-inch scratch from the belly button to the jelly roll part, with a puff of dried blood accumulation on the handle. A tattoo from my wrestling match with Zeke. Or another sign? I check my notes. April 19th, is the last time I ran. 49 days ago. Can that even be possible? I check my weight tracker:

[Read more...]

SMWI*: This morning. Lookin’ and feelin’ like…

fat-cat-funny


Notes: Image Source – themetapicture. SMWI*: Saturday Morning Work-out Inspiration


5:00 PM Bell: A race to get home

dog-puppy-cute-run-gif-running-adorable


Source: awreckofadaydreamer

 

SMWI*: Here’s a man. We’re not worthy!

1878030_running_streak_BRV_

  • He started May, 26, 1969. Two months before Neil Armstrong walked on the moon.
  • He’s run at least one mile every single day for 45 years. 16,438 days straight.
  • Each run has been documented in a daily diary contained in 46 binders.
  • He’s run 190,715 miles.
  • Rain or shine, healthy or sick, strong or weak — he has run. He’s run through 10 broken bones (two toes, two metatarsals, four ribs, a vertebrae and a hip) and arthroscopic surgeries on both knees.
  • When I run, I like to think,” he said.
  • As long as I’m healthy, I’m going to keep going.”
  • Jon Sutherland, 63, the High School Cross Country Coach in California, set the American Record on Monday.

Notes:

  • Thank you Elise.
  • SMWI* = Saturday Morning Work-Out Inspiration
  • Listen to the story on NPR.
  • Image & excerpts from: LA Times
  • We’re not worthy: Wayne’s World

 

 

Saturday Morning Work-out Inspiration

stretching-yoga-splits-exercise


Source: Thank you Carol

Running. With AAA.

photography,black and white,tire,flat tire,
Yahoo Weather Update:
57º F. Humidity 97%. Visibility 4 miles. Areas of dense morning fog. Mist.

Mist. And Ambivalence rains. Mind says yes. Body says rest.

I gear up.
Red and Black shoes. Black running pants. Red top.
Red. Rhino. Run.
I’m out the door.

The Mind whirrs back to Wednesday.  We’re in the car on our bi-annual trek to pick up Eric at College.  It’s a 10 to 14 hour drive and we’re standing in wall-to-wall traffic on the GW Bridge. We’re tracking to the wrong end of the range and the horse has just left the barn.

We clear the bridge and I’m barreling down the NJ turnpike.  72 mph. OK, 78 mph. Making up time.

The Warning light flashes on dash. “LOW TIRE PRESSURE.”  Followed by a PHSSSSSST. And then, a WUMP. WUMP. WUMP. WUMP. (Blood rushes to head. Why is it so hot in the car? Tension fills the cabin. Co-Pilot has seen the Captain manage the unexpected. It’s not pretty.)

I pull the car over to the shoulder. (I come from a long lineage of handymen. DNA somehow skipped me. My fix-it depth consists of bangin’ on the Alt-CTL-DEL key.)

Susan calls AAA. ETA is 30 minutes. (30 minutes to show up. 15-20 minutes to put on the provisional. 90 minutes to 3 hours to find a service station to replace tire. Estimated 2.5 – 4 hour delay. Mood darkens. Migraine thundering on queue.)

AAA arrives. I get out of the car to car to greet him. He gives me a hand signal to stay off the highway. His lips mouthing “too dangerous.” A Semi passes by and kicks up a wind gust. Diesel exhaust fills my lungs.

[Read more...]

SMWI*: If he can get it up, you can too

rhino-running

Rhino off all fours. 
2000 to 4000 pounds and rumblin’ down the highway for his morning work-out.
And what would my excuse be?

 


 

Saturday Morning Work-out Inspiration

exercise,yoga,work-out


Source: Tribalcountenance

Running. In Search of Inspiration.

yoga,photography,black and white

Day 3. Contemplating a third consecutive day of running. The body was saying No. The Heart was saying No. The Head was saying take the day off.

No inspiration to run. No inspiration to write. (Yet, you seemingly have an abundance of inspiration to eat. Go figure. You think these things would balance themselves out. Laws of nature and all that. Wasn’t that Darwin?)

Who is she? The photograph up top.  No idea. But there she was.  Stretching. Graceful. Peaceful. And pointing the way to the front door. (Out Butthead. Out!)

On the continuum of awful to ethereal, the morning is rated as sublime. (I could never figure out how to use “sublime” in a sentence and here it is. Feels awkward, like an ill-fitting pair of shoes. Big word, so much bigger than you. Shameful how you jammed that in there. Has to be some form of writer / hacker malpractice.)  [Read more...]

Running. Backwards.

running-gif-illustration-thoughts-mind

We’re all sinking in the same boat here.

Tired.
Tired of thinking about it.
Tired of writing about it.
Tired of reading it.

A business lunch on Thursday.
I drop my head and listen to the conversation.
I close my eyes.
And savor each one.
Chocolate chips melting…coating my tongue.
7, not a typo, 7 chocolate chip cookies in less than 15 minutes.
A sugar addiction.
Deficiency of something.
Deficit of Discipline.
Disgusted.
Disgusting.
Tired of stepping on scale the next morning and expecting a miracle.
Definition of insanity…

Tired of waking up with 4 hours of sleep.
With eyes burning.
Burning and watering at 6am before the sun rises.
And by 2pm, earning a full fledged membership in The Walking Dead.
Short of patience.
Hungry for flesh and blood.
[Read more...]

4.15 Strong


T.G.I.T.: It’s been a long week!

TGIF, T.G.I.F.,


Source: 4gifs.com


Running. With Chubby.

dog, vizsla

Zeke and I slow and stop on a narrow part of the trail as we close in on a walker and her puppy.

“Is he a Vizsla?”

She’s tall. Lean. Has to be 6′ 3″. A trace of Euro accent. East German Swimmer? Swedish Volleyball player?

D: “Yes.”

“He’s Big.”

Her cute 5-month old terrier is at her heels. Bouncing on her toes. Looking up at her Mommy with admiration.

D: “Big?”

“Aren’t Vizsla’s smaller?”

Her pup has a pink collar. Lean. Muscled. Beautiful dog.

D: “Snacks.”

She grins and points. There’s Zeke. He’s 20 yards off the trail. Rolling on his back, grinding in Deer urine.  

I leash Zeke up. He’s still on his back, with all four legs in the air. His eyes manic, full, are locked on mine. He’s baring his teeth and growling.

“Zeke, Don’t Screw With Me.”  

And, then with a firm, snap-tug on the leash, I drag him behind me until we’re back in rhythm.

Team Frito-Lay builds a head a steam and roars by Team Euro.

Big and Bad.

Time Check: 5 miles. 63 minutes.

Nap Time.


Related Posts: Running Series. Image Source: Mine! Taken today on the run.


Monday Morning Wake-Up Call: And, we’re off and running on…

St. Patrick's Day, St. Patty's day, cute, green

…St. Patrick’s Day!

 


Source: PawNation


Running. Full Stop.

cookie-monster-funny-gif

Well, it was only a matter of time.
Reversion to the mean.
I stepped on the scale.
Blinked.
Holy Sh*t. An Explosion.
One month of late night snacking (will work it off tomorrow),
an extra portion here (will have a light lunch),
a candy bar or two there (will skip a meal),
and the Jenga Tower collapses (wiping out a 15 year record low).

So, I’m off. Running. Mianus River Trails.
Overdressed (way) for 32º F. Man wearing plastic suit on a hot summer day.

No dogs. No gadgets. No water. No people. No talking.
No fancy shoes. No fancy moisture wicking shirts.
No anti-chafe Body Glide balm for my Boobies.
No whining about the cold.
No complaining about the mud, the ice, the roots and the ruts.
No agonizing over turned ankles.
I will either levitate over all of it or mow it down.
And, Heaven help any chatty Human in the way of this-calorie-shedding-angry-middle-aged-bulbous-white-man.
We’re taking it all off, all of it, in one day.

Time Check: 7 miles.  1 hour 17 minutes.

Nap time.


Related Posts: Running Series. Image Source: Mme Scherzo

2:00 am. March 9. DST: Spring Forward. Not so fast.

funny-daylight-savings-bed-gym-confession-ecards-someecards


Image Credit. Thanks Lorne.

SMWI*: Jump Rope Beast

jump rope-skipping-gif


Notes:

Running. On S-Sunday.

photography,black and white,dog,trail,Connecticut,

Sunday
Sleep in
Sabbath
Sunrise
S(z)eke
Snow
Scenery*
Six Mile run. Sixty-two minutes.
Shower
Siesta
Snackin’. Salsa
Superbowl. Seattle!
Sleep


*Sylvia Plath: I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery— air, mountains, trees…I thought, “This is what it is to be happy.”


Related Posts: Running Series. Credit: Thank you Susan for photo of Zeke.

Running. In Delirium.

forest-mist-path-winter

37° F.
Mianus River Park.
I park the car.
I queue up my music.
I cross the bridge to the entrance.

Light rain is falling.
Mist is floating – cobwebs in trees.
Steam is rising from the earth.

I start my climb.
Rain. Rocks. Roots. Ruts.
Wet leaves.
Muddy track.
Treacherous.
I short-step my run on the way up.

I’m 1/2 mile in.
Stomach isn’t right.  I’m woozy.
I slow my pace.
I’m lightheaded.
Lift your head man. Look straight ahead. Get a grip. [Read more...]

SMWI*: Moucherotte

Moucherotte – 2013 – L2A Production from kevin valliere on Vimeo.


Take a slow and easy walk up Moucherotte in the French Alps…wrapped in R&B, Al Green-like soul music by Darondo. “Didn’t I” can be found on iTunes here. (What a great song!)


SMWI*: Ain’t no grave can hold my body down


SMWI* = Saturday Morning Work-Out Inspiration

Running. On Christmas Day.

signal-traffic-signal-green-red-fog-mist-Christmas

She had an oversized winter coat. No gloves. No hat.
She was a hundred yards from the train station.
And walking the other way.
No one was waiting.

It was Christmas Day.
27° F.
4:30 pm.
Kids are lounging.
Jake & Josh running in one room.
The other is curled up with Zeke and a comforter. Both sound asleep.
Dinner was in the oven. ETA of 6:30 pm.
I glance out the window.
Daylight is fading quickly.
There’s time.

I could see her outline in the shadows of the street lights.
Hunched over.
Alone.
[Read more...]

SMWI* 2: Take your best friend and go

snoopy-woodstock-christmas-exercise


SMWI* = Saturday Morning Workout Inspiration


Image Credit

SMWI*: Yup, about right.

funny-people-gym-new-year


SMWI* = Saturday Morning Workout Inspiration


Source: themetapicture.com

Running. The Survivor.

rain_drops_at_night-wide

It’s Monday morning. 8:00 am. I’m waiting out the rain.

It’s Tuesday morning. I’m noodling on why I waited to write this post. I broke the chain: Run. Write the post. Nap.

Life and order. Life, and of course, order.

Let us simmer over our incalculable cauldron, our enthralling confusion, our hotch-potch of impulses, our perpetual miracle—for the soul throws up wonders every second. Movement and change are the essence of our being; rigidity is death; conformity is death: let us say what comes into our heads, repeat ourselves, contradict ourselves, fling out the wildest nonsense, and follow the most fantastic fancies without caring what the world does or thinks or says. For nothing matters except life; and, of course, order.

—Virginia Woolf

Back to Monday.

The rain doesn’t let up.

Mom now has Dad’s cold.  Zeke is stuck with Dad for his morning walk. The morning routine is turned upside down. He glares at me: “Where’s Mom?” He hears the rain popping on the car hood.  He snarls.

Life and order. Life, and of course, order.

We arrive at Mianus River Park. Hail size drops are splashing on the windshield.  I notice there isn’t a single car in the parking lot.  My spirits climb.  Rain be damned.

Survivor.
[Read more...]

SMWI*: Speed Dreams


Dreamy?
Floating on puffs of air down the French mountainside.
Inspired?
Transfixed by the cinematography.
Producer titles his work: Speed Dreams. Just beautiful things. Yes. Yes, it is.
However, this exercise is not for the faint of (my) heart.


Ski Gliding is the air sport of flying a small, fast fabric wing, usually in close proximity to a steep slope, on skis.  The sport has grown rapidly since its inception in the 1970’s, particularly in France and Switzerland, with an estimated 3,000 to 5,000 speed wing pilots all over the world. Because of the fast flight speed (20-90 mph), and close proximity to the slope and obstacles, injury and death are considerable risks in this sport. Over 25 pilots have already suffered fatal injuries worldwide since 2006. Also, because of its small size and high wing loading, the wing responds quickly to little pilot input which makes professional instruction very important. (Source: Wiki)


SMWI* = Saturday Morning Workout Inspiration


Running. With Boom Boom Boom.

Train-snow-winter-steam

6:30 am.
27° F.  Sunny.
It’s Day 9.
9 straight days of sinus headaches. Nasal drips. Hacking. Energy levels not firing. Fatigue. Blahhhhh.
9 straight days of rotation between bed, couch and Kleenex box. And, this party is not yet over.
ENOUGH.
I gear up and head out the door. Time to man-up.
Croupy cough. Unshoveled sidewalks. Black Ice. All be damned.
This train is coming.

I’m flickin’ through my playlist. Bocelli? No. Click. Handel? No. Click. John Legend? No. Click. Sade? No. Click. Peter Gabriel? Solsbury Hill. Stop.


↓ click for audio (Peter Gabriel:  “Solsbury Hill”)


Climbing up on Solsbury Hill
I could see the city light
Eagle flew out of the night
He was something to observe

My pace quickens. That’s right. This Eagle is flying.
Sun sparkling on the snow layered with the morning frost.
Geese, out of the water, perched on rocks in the cove.
Even cold for their a**es. (Wonder if geese get hemorrhoids?) [Read more...]

SMWI*: Zydrunas Savickas – King of Kings


Žydrūnas Savickas, 38, is a Lithuanian powerlifter and professional strongman. He is widely considered to be one of the greatest strongman competitors of all time. He is the only modern strongman competitor to have won every major strongman competition, most notably the World’s Strongest Man in 2009, 2010, & 2012. He is 6 ft 3 in tall and competes at 385 lb. Savickas is often referred to by his nickname, “Big Z”. (Source: Wiki)

This month, Savickas broke the Guinness world record for the most cars pulled by one man when he hauled 12 Nissan Cars (28,530 pounds) for five meters in Druskininkai, Lithuania.  See video here.

What is your diet like during heavy training?
I eat about 6,000 calories a day, plus I drink four or five litres of water and three protein shakes with milk or water. I eat four times a day, mainly cottage cheese, eggs, chicken, beef, fish, rice, potatoes, vegetables and fruit juices. My favourite food is Steak and Potatoes. I monitor my body weight. If I just need power for a competition then I eat fried food. But if I also need speed or endurance, such as in the World’s Strongest Man competition, I eat more healthily. I’m very careful with alcohol: I have a glass of white wine perhaps two or three times a year. (Source: Men’s Fitness)


SMWI* = Saturday Morning Workout Inspiration

Running. With Lust.

donuts,cookie,muffin,sweet,dessert,bakery

5:14 am.
I tap open the weather app.
23° F. 
I glance out the window.
Dark. DARK.

The morning is the hardest time. It is hard enough anywhere for a man to begin the day’s work in darkness…One may be a long time realizing it, but cold and darkness deplete the body gradually; the mind turns sluggish; and the nervous system slows up in its responses…But I must not dwell on it. Otherwise I am undone.

~ Richard Byrd

I stare at the ceiling.
Go later. There will be light. It will be warmer.
I pull the comforter tighter.
Zeke sighs and nuzzles closer.
Who are you kidding? Get up and out.

I climb out of bed.
Needing the pull of inspiration, I take a new route.

The master said:
You must write what you see.
But what I see does not move me.
The master answered:
Change what you see.

– Louise Glück, in Vita Nova

[Read more...]

SMWI*: The Ascent


SMWI* = Saturday morning workout inspiration.

Running. With Cummings.

sunrise

App says:
24° F.
Wind 16 MPH WNW.
Feels like 6° F.  (Are.You.Out.Of.Your.Mind?)

I step out the door.
Shock.
Autumn to Winter overnight.
Wind shearing through jacket.
It finds the bare skin between the sweatpants and socks.
And blows up my pant leg.
Mmmmmmm.
George Costanza. Shrinkage episode on Seinfeld.
Got to move.

Yesterday, the legs were pumping on the Elliptical machine.
Indoors.
Warmth.
Netflix movie running.
Today.  Right knee is throbbing. Bitter cold.
The Question is Why? Why are you out here?
(Hundreds of blog posts. Not one has emanated from the elliptical machine. Not one.) [Read more...]

SMWI*: Pie Chart

exercise,weight loss,run,food,pie


SMWI* = Saturday morning workout inspiration. Source: themetapicture.com

Running. With Ferns.

green,photograph,woods,fern,

We’d run.
Our sneakers dripping with mid morning dew.
Hearts pounding.
We’d reach the plateau.
And See.
Our eyes held in rapture.
Not just any Green. An ethereal magnificence.

In Spring, it was an unfurling of a carpet on the forest floor.

In Summer, the ferns rose.
They climbed, fed by hard, warm rains.
Knee-high under the cover of deciduous trees.
Chest-high in clearings.
Emitting an earthy fragrance, fresh and cooling, filling our lungs.

In Autumn, Green gave way to a harvest of Gold.
Tips of fiddleheads crumbling as we batted them with our hands in our climb.
Rising particles of fine dust in air behind us.

We’d reach the creek.
A trickle now.
We’d kneel down, the moss cushioning our knees.
Lips rushing to slurp the cool water.
Pausing to catch our breath.
And, then back.
Back down the mountainside.
Our footprints cutting shadows through the ferns.
Leaving their imprints etched in our consciousness.

It’s so close.
So close today, 40 years later.
Thousands of miles away.
I close my eyes,
My skin tingles from the coolness under the canopy.
The Canadian Cascades lingering in my nostrils.
There it is.
Right there.
The Sea of Green.


“You have to begin to lose your memory, if only in bits and pieces, to realize that memory is what makes our lives. Life without memory is no life at all, just as an intelligence without the possibility of expression is not really an intelligence. Our memory is our coherence, our reason, our feeling, even our action. Without it, we are nothing.”

Luis Buñuel

Credits: Image Credit: Saicode via Sunforhersoul. Quote Source: Journal of a Nobody

Related Posts: Running Series.

Running. Everytime.

October, photography,

6:15 am.
I peek at the weather app before I step outside.
“34° F.   Feels like 26° F.  Partly Cloudy.”
Winter closing in.
I yank my Tuque over my ears.
I glance at the mirror.
The Black Avenger: Back for an encore.
Black Tuque. Black jacket. Black pants.
And Red Shoes.
Gangster.
I cue up my David Gray playlist.
Open the door.
And head to the street.

How often does it happen?
Just the right song cycles up.
65 David Gray songs resting.
Waiting for their turn.
And it pops up.

A bubbling geyser.
It starts slowly.
Starting from way down deep.
And surging upward.
No chemical inducements.
Adrenaline.
Miracle drug.


↓ click for audio (David Gray:  “Everytime”)

Down from the doorway
And into the street
I hear the morning bell
Over and over the pattern repeat
I hear the morning bell
And all the faces cold as stone
In the January chill

~ David Gray, Everytime [Read more...]

Uneasiness. Inquietude. There is work to be done.

George Sheehan

“Jogging or whatever our sport is, then, is the way we move from actuality toward our potential, toward becoming all we can be. At the same time it will fill us with uneasiness, with what Gabriel Marcel called inquietude, the recognition that there is work to be done to fulfill our lives. And it allows us to see, as Theodore Roszak suggested, that our most solemn, and pressing, and primary problem is not “original sin” but “original splendor,” knowledge of our potential godlikeness. “We grow sick,” Roszak wrote, “with the guilt of having lived below our authentic level.”

~ George Sheehan, Running & Being


My friend Elise suggested I read Sheehan’s Book Running & Being.  I was hooked from the first chapter and I’m sipping a few pages a day.  More on George Sheehan below: [Read more...]

Running. To…Away From 10.

mind-servant-master-quotes
I finished the post last Sunday.
It was titled “Running. To 10.”
567 words.
~ 50 minutes of prep.
The cursor lingered over the “PUBLISH” button.
My index finger hung over “ENTER” on the keyboard. (Pulse quickening. Typos? Is this Good Enough?)

I eased back my finger. (Your gut.  It’s usually right.)
I sent an email copy to Rachel who’s home on Fall break.
Blah. Blah. Blah. Dull. Re-run. Tired. Been there. Done that. One trick pony. Is that all you got?
Carpet-bombed by my own offspring.
Don’t you think that’s a bit harsh?
“Dad, you asked.  If you didn’t want to know, you shouldn’t have asked.”
I laugh. (I built this creature. Chip off the ol’ block.) [Read more...]

Running. With Color.

maine

6:15am.
57° F.
I pull on my long sleeve shirt, first of the season.
Dusk.
No.
Dark.

Burning orange.
The sunrise is working itself up on the horizon. A sliver of light in sea of darkness.
My feet are light. A soft, cool breeze kicks up goose bumps on my chest – I shiver. No matter. All body parts functioning. Biorhythms in alignment. Run friend. Run.

Reflecto Green.
I pass a group of early morning runners. One is wearing a nighttime reflective green vest.
Firefighters wearing florescent green vests are lingering – – others are sweeping glass off the highway. My Thursday night commute home, and I’m late for dinner. My Northbound traffic will be clearing in 6 miles. Southbound traffic is at a standstill. I arrive at the bottleneck. The Roof of the Jeep is decapitated. White air bags hanging limp. 

Yellow. Double Yellow Lines.
I lumber up the meandering hill on Long Neck Point Road. I’m winded. I slow the pace to catch my breath.
He was 12 years old. I was barreling down a 2-lane highway returning from our vacation in Banff, looking for an opening to pass the car ahead of me. Double yellow lines signal a corner.  As I take my foot of the accelerator, a cat bolts in front of the car in front of us.  Eric screams and buries his head into his Mother. I’m looking in the rear view mirror.  He’s trembling.    [Read more...]

Running. With Zeke.

charlie brown hugging snoopy

64° F.
91% humidty.
Cloud cover low.
Dusk.
I’m sitting on the front stoop.
Zeke (dog) tucked in close to Mama.
Garmin finishes syncing up with the Gremlins.
I walk onto the street.
Strap on the head phones.
And turn the music up.
Take a deep breath.

I see Susan waving me back.

“Zeke’s crying.”
“Zeke’s crying?”
“Yes, I think he wants to come.” [Read more...]

SMWI*: No words required.

funny-fat-cat-door


*SMWI = Saturday Morning Workout Inspiration

Source: themetapicture

Biggest Loser: Six Guaranteed Steps To Achieve Weight Loss

jell-o 10 calories sugar free
90 days ago, I set a personal biggest loser challenge in my post: If all else fails. Resort to Shame.  The goal: a weight drop from 210.6 to a flat 200 lbs in 90 days.  Outcome: 197.6.  Talk about a smack-down!  Here’s the guaranteed 6-step winning formula:

  1. Be sure to start your diet after aggressively running up your weight. Heavy intake of salt retaining food works best. (Fill your intestines with Thai food + Pasta + Fried Chicken lathered in Häagen-Dazs. Get it up quickly. You know you’re there when you struggle to get your wedding ring off. And be so disgusted with yourself, you have no choice but to run this down. See #2 below for salt flush.)
  2. Cut out soda, fruit drinks, flavored water, orange juice – – anything that tastes good – – and replace with water. (In other words, swell yourself like a dirigible – this kills your appetite and gets you more exercise at night running to and from the potty.)
  3. On a best efforts basis, don’t eat after 7 pm. (Snacking almonds and cheese sticks with your dog are expressly permitted.)
  4. Exercise 40 days out of 90 days. (44%. Pathetic! Less in than out? Bunk. Less in. Period.)
  5. Post your weight daily on your blog. (Shame DOES work.)
  6. And the secret sauce, replace all ice cream intake with sugar free, 10 calorie, kiddy-sized Jell-O. (1 minimum and up to 6 maximum single servings per day aka one six-pack carton. Could I be addicted? To kiddy Jell-o? And for all of you looking to scold me about the vast amount of chemical preservatives ingested, have 6 Jell-o’s on me.  No alfalfa sprouts are going to touch the inside of this tank.)

Next Goal Post:

  • January 1, 2014.
  • Maintain 200 lbs through the Thanksgiving/Christmas feedings.
  • Back to you on January 1 with an update.

Time to celebrate the victory. With?

Haagen-Dazs Pistachio Ice Cream!


Image Credit