This is not the moon. This is a dirigible at the Long Beach airport. I was driving home after dark, and this thing was floating off in the distance. I had to turn around and go get a picture. Disconcerting, to say the least.
I ran 9.5 miles today at attempted race pace. That’s the amazing Janet Chan on the right on the Long Beach bike path. I follow her mile after mile. Going out was good, Marina Vista Park to Alfredo’s. Coming back it was really hot and windy. Now the wind was there on the way out, too. So I think it’s unfair to complain when it benefits you one way but hinders you the other. Since last week’s system worked pretty well — Janet used her Garmin and I just ran — I didn’t start my Garmin today (I forgot). I did have it on and it was working, so I could watch my pace. And as Janet has posted her Garmin, I’m guessing we don’t have a record of today’s run. (Talking to the Coach later, he said to me – rather sharply – you always have to have your Garmin recording. Even if you forget and have to start half way through the run. Okey dokey.) Best of all, all things considered, is that after the pier, it seemed to get easier (this is mile 6-9.5), surely because I was headed home and I could break the rest of the run into manageable chunks in my head. And, regardless of the pace, I ran the whole way down the parking lot at Marine Stadium for only the second time (in my life). Good for that!
My test, these days, about speed, is really about breathing. I can run a long way (a long time) at a pretty good clip (for me) with no panting. So, when I have labored breathing, I know I’m attempting to run too fast and I need to slow down. I do not think this slows me down too much. What I’m getting out of these Saturday runs at pace is that to make this work you have to really work and it is difficult. In writing this, I realize I already know it, but had forgotten. Just showing up won’t make you faster. You have to push. (“To run faster you have to train faster.” Steve Mackel)
One of the ways I measure my amount of push is when the sweat drips off my pony tail. When the pony tail is wet and dripping, I’m pushing appropriately hard enough.
On the way home from the run — having consumed coffee with almond milk, 1 protein shake (protein/spinach/flax/watermelon), chocolate milk (after the run), and another protein shake (same stuff) — I wanted pancakes. But they have to be gluten free…I’m probably on day 5 gluten free. So I called Stacey and Brian and asked about how they got gluten free pancakes, which is a solution for the future, but not today. In the end, I when to Sprouts and they had this mix. I made the mix and made 2 big pancakes…with butter and syrup and a little peach. Pretty good. Very filling. A LOT of calories. But I’m only getting hungry again now (I ate pancakes about noon, I would guess, and it’s 9:30 now).
I took a shower and tried to nap, but only lay down for about 30 minutes. I may have slept. I got up, ate some watermelon (snack of champions) and got started on paperwork for the afternoon.
I went to say hello to the Boyles and Wilks this evening. Here’s a charming thing. The running “club” that I belong to has put together volunteers to bring the family dinner for the first few days. (I’m next Thursday.) Even not being the beneficiary of this, I can appreciate how nice it is not to have to worry about fixing the meal at the end of the day. And, it’s actually nice to get to cook for a group, too. Since I really only make two “company” dishes, I hope this goes twice through the volunteers so that I can show off all my culinary talents. (Sometimes I just totally crack myself up.) I can make double so that I get the benefit, too.
But what I really started to write about is the AMAZING sense of community that puts this together. It’s a running group for cryin’ out loud, not a church. A long time ago, I went to a hotel with a bunch of the other runners for a weekend race. It was such a fun weekend. I had to go to the coach and thank him for having the insight to create a group that — 5 years down the road — is providing so much fun for me. (It’s all about me, after all.) I know that the guys who put this organization together spent significant time contemplating the group dynamic that they’d like to foster. But it’s pretty amazing that amongst a ground roughly 200 random peep, of which many come and go, who have virtually nothing in common except running (at least initially) that there is such a sense of care for each other. OK maybe not amazing. But good. And wonderful to share.
Food Today: recorded
Training Today: ran 9.5 miles at race pace with Janet