Saturday, March 30, 2019

Brain/Body Not Connected

I ran four miles this morning. That shouldn't be a big deal, but I suppose it is. It's been a pretty lousy week of some running and some non-running. Getting in good runs during my peak work/travel times is always a challenge, but with this shitty knee, it's even worse. But enough about that.

This morning's run was for the most part not bad. In four miles I had only one knee incident (a knee incident, what I call a pop, is when my leg straightens a little too much, my knee hyperextends and OUCH - feels like bone on bone). Most of the time, if I'm really focused, I can monitor each leg strike and avoid the dreaded pop. That is, however, a lot of focusing on each plant of my left leg.

Anyway....... I had a bit of a revelation this morning. Maybe better named a reality moment. I was running (very optimistic word to describe what I was doing), passed through the first mile at a jog-like 15:19. YIKES, I thought. I have run a 5K faster than that. I have passed through the three mile almost faster than that on my way to 12. I felt embarrassed. Then I thought, what am I embarrassed about? And really, who cares?

It's not like I was fast yesterday and today I am not. Granted, I've evolved from being a 32 minute 10K guy, to trying to break 40, to trying to break 60. But, it's not like that happened overnight, right? Now getting slower, like aging, is a gradual process. But in a way, it's kind of like a haircut where even though you know that your hair is growing consistently, you wake up one morning and BAM..... you need a haircut. AND..... stay with me here..... then you get a haircut and your hair grows again, and BAM.... you need a haircut.

I've had the wake up call that I have been getting slower numerous times. It has, in fact, been documented within this blogging venue. What happened this morning was two awakenings: 

1) My brain is out of touch with my physical reality. My brain still thinks I am a runner. I am motivated, optimistic, ready to hammer that long run. My body, however, does not deliver. Despite watching the World Cross Country Championships this morning and being mentally ready to nail the run, my body says, "not so fast (pun intended)."

2) It's time for a metaphorical haircut. This time, though, I am getting the buzz cut. This time we're taking it all off and starting from scratch. I've been setting myself up for disappointment with this motivated mentality (and don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with motivation). So now, the mindset is simple: I am starting from the basics of someone who just began running, someone freshly recovering from surgery. 

One step at a time. That's the way of the body. It's a long term project with few setbacks if long term is the mindset. And embarrassment? That's strictly mental and.... Please, when was the last time I actually judged myself by what someone else thinks? Hardly EVER. So we simply bring that mindset, along with my overly inflated carcass and run judgment free (hopefully escaping the harshest judgment - my own). I like it.

Run, as Eliud would say, with the run.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Heat Wave AND Are We Still Doing This Stupid Daylight Savings Time Thing?


It was a balmy 14 degrees for my run this morning. That's up from 0 Sunday and then 2. Now, don't get me wrong, 0 in Colorado is not like 0 in say.... Detroit or Chicago. I'll take 0 here over 20 in the Great Lakes. Still a hair chilly - at the least it's tights weather.

In general, this running thing has been light, at best. 30-35 miles a week is the norm and that is with good knee days and bad knee days. What I have enjoyed the most has been the earlier sunrise. I like being able to see at 6 or 6:30. I like that little kids don't have to wait for the school bus in the dark, and I like not having to wear my headlamp for my early jaunts.

Of course, all of that is going away. Soon.....

On Saturday night we will be taking that annual journey into daylight savings time. And let me say right up front, I still don't get it. Why do we humans believe we can't live without manipulating things, especially time? I suppose it's because we invented it.

George Hudson, a New Zealand entomologist, was the first to suggest this in 1895, mostly so that he could have longer light in the evening to, I guess, chase bugs. Port Arthur, Ontario, Canada was the first city to actually implement it back in 1908. Port Arthur, for those of you non-Great Lakers, is on the North side of Lake Superior, which is on the North side of civilization. I've been there and don't understand what there is to see in the evening anyway.

Then came the German Empire. Don't even get me started on this one as my wife and I both have German cars, and given the mediocre GPS functionality, I know why they lost two world wars. In the 70s, the U.S. of A. came onboard.

Proponents cite reduced energy use (been proven to be minimal 0.34%), economic effects (People are more likely to stop at a convenience store on the way home from work if it's still light......... or maybe if they need something. Golf courses see a higher revenue. Oh boy! On the other hand, farmers dislike it), crime rates (some thought they would go down - no significant change), health gains (it's been discovered that some people are more apt to exercise with the extended daylight, BUT heart attacks are up 10%). The jury is OUT. 

So, why?

Not to seem paranoid, but, I believe that Daylight Savings Time is a clear attack on morning people. We morning folk love the sunrise, love the early daylight and are generally the chirpiest of people in the A.M.  Depressed, cynical, grumps can't stand it. And since the world is run, for the most part, but depressed, cynical, grumps..... we're stuck.

Just know this, grumps: until the light comes back (May-ish), there'll be fewer people whistling, humming, and being chirpy. In your world that means fewer annoyances. It's okay, we'll get even in November.

Run on (although in the dark).