Friday, March 30, 2012

Walk, Jog, Limp, Run

I'm BAAAACK in the saddle again ...
After at least 2 months off from the gym I am now signed up at a new gym and running regularly again.

Well, I call it running, but it involves more rapid walking than it used to. I start my runs walking faster and faster until I'm running. After that I speed up steadily until I reach a speed I feel good about. Then I just hold that speed until I hit the 3 mile mark and try to focus on good form and holding a steady pace.

I know, super exciting, right?

But tonight I added a new twist of super excitement. I pulled a muscle in my calf. It cramped up on me during the first mile. But I'm stubborn. And stupid. And a relatively attractive woman was on the treadmill next to me. So I gutted it out, running over two miles with a heroic limp. Very impressive, eh?

Look at my awesome shoes ... ow, I hurt my calf!
I have steadily increased my speed in each workout so far, which is helpful since I'm trying to prepare for a race, but now I have an injury because I didn't stop running when I should have. Dumb.

So now I'm icing my calf and reading "Runners World" in hopes of finding some good advice for how to deal with this injury and get back to training. My first race is in three weeks.

Why am I so stupid?!
I'm also still blogging from my phone, so this is a real pain. You don't even know until you've tried it. Blah!

This works great!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Back to the Gym

I made it back to the gym finally. It wasn't easy. I had to dig through boxes to find my iPod, but couldn't find my earbuds. So I ended up wearing funky brand new functified wraparound ear 'things'. I couldn't find a single pair of running shorts, so I had to run in a pair of shorts that I wear to work in the yard. They look nothing like running shorts at all.

My Skeletoes
Also, I decided to try out my brand new pair of Skeletoes shoes - you know, those new shoes with individual toes that look like Fred Flintstone's feet.

I have never run in shoes like these before. It never occurred to me that it might be in some meaningful way different than running in a nice pair od Nikes. But as it turns out, it is VERY different.

I should probably mention that I have horrible feet with mangled toes and bones that even a foot surgeon said could never really be fixed so that they work right. Any time I do a run of any significant distance I come home to blood-soaked socks because my feet are just deranged and mostly useless beyond a mostly awkward and graceless tramping about. So I had wondered just how my feet would perform in a pair of shoes that separate each individual toe into its own section and make it do its own share of the work.

As it turns out, it made the run quite a bit harder. I do believe this is the first time I can recall that my feet actually complained of being tired before.

And this wasn't the best night for me to be trying out something so radically new, either. Considering that I haven't run in over a month now, probably closer to two, and I'm sure I've gained weight since moving here on top of that, all in my gut.

Also the pollen count for today was a whopping 11.2 out of a possible 12 with weathermen warning people with asthma to remain indoors and people with general pollen allergies to avoid strenous outdoor activities as much as possible. I have severe allergies and have been battling what seem to be the early signs of adult onset asthma for the last 2 years. My allergist told me 15 years ago that I should not be running outdoors at all, but I ignored him. It wasn't that I didn't respect his opinion. Its just that running on a treadmill is so mindnumbingly boring that it makes me want to kill myself.

I knew I was already having sinus and allergy problems before I got to the gym. I currently have the breath-of-death that always indicates a pollen-induced sinus infection. I knew I hadn't run in awhile and was already out of shape. I knew I had gained weight since moving here, all directly in front of me. I knew I don't normally run at night anymore, so it'd be a shock to my system. I knew I have never run in Skeletoes shoes before. But I also knew I have a race coming up in a month and I need to get ready as fast as possible. So I thought I'd push it and run hard.

Yeah, so I thought.

I ran about three-quarters of a mile and had to stop and walk. My feet, ankles and calves were not adjusting to these funky shoes and I felt as if I were running uphill the entire time. To be fair, these shoes are not the running shoe model, only I didn't know it at the time. I was just discovering it through trial and error. But it wasn't just because of my feet that I had to stop and walk. My lungs simply weren't working either. I couldn't breathe. I was sweating like a pig, but running like an elephant, pounding the treadmill and dragging my feet repeatedly while waiting for my body to warm up and get adjusted to the fact that we were running. It never did.

The proper running shoe model Skeletoe
I walked for about a quarter mile and then ran for the next full mile. Then I had to walk again. Then I ran some. Then I finally gave up and walked for about three quarters of a mile and quit.

Nice porn mustache
There were some attractive girls around me in my new gym environment. I tried not to look because A) I'm new and don't want to be labeled the new perv B) I've gained weight and look like a total dork in my black Skeletoes with white toe socks, yard shorts, weird ear-things for my iPod, and fat gut and C) A good-looking girl just today told me that any time a strange guy smiles at a young, good-looking girl for any reason she thinks he's creepy and if he says "Hi" then he's twice as creepy, so it's really just best if he either scowls and seems like an ass or else ignores her and says nothing.

So anyway, it was a terrible workout. And Thursday night I'm planning to go back and do it again. Yay.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Update after St Patrick's Day

I have tried three times to join a local gym. Believe it or not, my three attempts have been unsuccessful. you wouldn't think it would be so hard, but apparently this gym owner doesn't care much about adding members. I plan to try again this week.

I spent St Patrick's Day evening in a bar listening to a friend's band play while I drank beer and pretended not to have a migraine. They were way loud and had lots of flashing lights set up which periodically hit me dead in the eyes and set off a migraine that didnt quit until well into the following day.

Since I mentioned my troubles updating a PC with Windows Service Pack 3, I thought I'd update that with the latest. I managed to download the whole service pack file for burning to CD. Or at least Windows seemed to insist that it was a CD burner file. That frustrated me for awhile until finally I opned the file using Notepad. This caused it to run, finally, and update the operating system to service pack 3. It took all freakin' night, but now it's done.

I'm trying to adjust to my new surroundings and situation. I'm trying to learn to blog using my cell phone, too. This is my first attempt at it.

I hope you had a good St Patrick's Day.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Sunday, Must Be Funday

It's Sunday afternoon, its dark and raining outside, and I've just wasted my entire afternoon trying to get Windows service pack 3 to download and install on this computer.

It hasn't encouraged me at all to discover through internet searches that a great many users of Microsoft Windows have experienced the exact same problem that I have, what with the file downloading for an hour and then simply disappearing without installing at all.

It hasn't encouraged me at all to read of users who managed to install it successfully only to have their computers begin running like a tired of piece of crap when just prior to installing the service pack their machines ran fine.

It isn't helpful that I need to go to the bathroom and drop a load for about half of the time I've been fighting this battle. I'm stubborn. I can't just walk away. I sat here and waited for the download to complete so I could do the install. I want to know where the hell it went and why it won't install.

I want to throw this computer across the room, drive to Seattle and walk into Microsoft headquarters and punch every programmer I find in the face.

I am not having a fun Sunday.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Swamped and Workout Free

I'm afraid there haven't been any workouts in over 2 weeks. I'm sooooo busy right now and I'm in need of a new gym on top of all that.  I have to readjust to my new location and then find a good gym nearby. It's a different world here and I'm afraid it's going to be very difficult for me to adjust.

That's really all I have to say right now. I'm just swamped.