Monday, January 26, 2009

Never Boring

Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Antithetic Workout

My experience at the gym today was the exact opposite of what I generally enjoy about running. I love getting outside, alone with my thoughts and the rhythm of feet on pavement. Running brings clarity, calmness, and usually instills in me a sense of purpose.
I've chosen to run inside this winter instead of fighting the snowbanks and ice, and have found that some of the intangible benefits of running are indeed only to be found in the great outdoors. However, for the most part I've enjoyed my indoor training experience.
Today, though, seemed like a test to see just how committed I am to this whole gym thing.
When I first pulled into the parking lot, there were A LOT of cars there - more than I've ever seen. Generally I like going to the gym on the weekend because it is a lot less crowded than during the week. Not today. I considered just turning around and going back later, but knew that I probably wouldn't return.
So I went in and was happy to note that there were several classes going on, which explained the sudden influx of people. There wasn't anyplace for me to warm up properly, so I claimed one of the few remaining treadmills and got down to business.
Rather than the calm, clarity-infused running I love, I was subjected to an aural barrage from every direction. Combine the louder-than-usual music with the whirring and feet-stomping from treadmills all around me, the staff member who thought right then was the perfect time to vacuum, and the people having outdoor-voice conversations, and my tranquility was shot. Add to this the fact that I'd brought my ipod today because I wanted to run for longer than usual and needed some hand-picked motivation, and I wound up with the exact opposite of what I was looking for.
I have to say that the plethora of distractions made the time go faster, and I actually had a pretty good run, once I got tuned into what I was doing.
I'm finding that indoor running, while it definitely doesn't have the challenges of weather and road conditions, has been good practice for my mental state. The ability to focus when there is so much going on around me, as well as the challenge to stay motivated when there is nothing going on to distract from the monotonous whirring of the treadmill belt, will surely only help me be a better runner.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Growing. Older.

I realized yesterday that I am not comfortable with the thought of growing older. I have no problem being the age I am; I don't even mind thinking about sticking a 1 behind that 3 in less than 2 months. What I do mind, apparently, is the thought of the inevitable decline of our bodies as we age.
I had this revelation as I was reading my February edition of Runner's World magazine. They've dedicated a number of pages to a feature called "Age Matters." I've just skimmed the articles, but the news that bones start losing their density, muscle mass declines, recovery rates increase, weight gain is almost inevitable, and your heart starts beating slower pretty much discouraged further reading. I know there is some good news in there somewhere, but for some stubborn reason I find myself unable to sit down and read the whole series of articles.
I've only been a runner for a couple of years, and I'm sad to think that I have only 4 or 5 years left to run my fastest race before age becomes more of a issue.

However. I do not know what the next 5 years, or even tomorrow, may bring. What I do know is that today I can run. So I will do my best, because I can.

(aside: Sometimes it's good to express doubts and worries, because in the simple black and white letters, lining up all orderly on my page, things make more sense than when they're swirling thoughts, all disorderly and panicked. This is one of those times.)

Thursday, January 15, 2009


Jake, with books.

Thursday, January 08, 2009


Today I am thankful for spontaneous laughter and sisters to share it with. I'm thankful for good news, and optimism about the future.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

I've Gone and Done it Again

Yesterday I signed up to run the 2009 Saskatchewan Half Marathon in May. I've been anxious to get back into running, and knew this would be good motivation for me. After all the eating I've done over Christmas and New Year's I think I've put on a few pounds and am looking forward to going back to the gym on Monday.
This will be my 3rd winter of training for a race, and I have to say it's great to have something to look forward to after the holidays. This year I'm going to put a little more effort into my training and hopefully be able to run a little faster come May.
Here's to looking ahead and starting 2009 filled with anticipation!