Sunday, May 30, 2010

"Hello" Again!

Farmington Canal Linear Park trail 71 degrees. 5 miles; Splits: 8:54; 8:58; 8:56; 8:56; 8:50 44:34; 8:54 per mile pace.

Thank-you to the 6 of you who commented on my short post yesterday. You're all nuts! :-)

Yesterday I ran. Yesterday I remembered what a gift it is to be able to run. Yesterday I appreciated the fact I can run; can enjoy running on a beautiful spring day, on a scenic trail, with lots of people enjoying the day and being active. Yesterday's "music" while I ran was the sounds of nature and people talking.

CRAZY past week. Sunday my wife Kathy and I celebrated our 29th anniversary at Mohegan Sun casino. We had a fun time, but of course didn't win big. However, a growler of Thomas Hooker beer and good food helped ease the pain of losing money. Then another type of loss on Monday. My son called me at 9 a.m. while we were at the casino to tell me my cat "Ace" had been hit by a car and died. Ace was my best bud. He was the cat at the pound that nobody wanted. He wasn't a "lap cat," or so everyone thought. When I told the pound a couple of years ago that I wanted to adopt him, they thought I was crazy. He had scratched me the day before when I petted him for what he thought was too long a period of time. He was a cat that thought he was a dog. We would wrestle; he would lay on my lap and wake me up if I fell asleep by shoving his butt in my face. He was a big boy-16 lbs. of love. He even sounded like he said "Hello" if you dared to ignore him whenever he wanted to go out or come in. So Ace is dead...buried in our backyard. We planted some perennials in his memory, and I'm moving on. We'll probably adopt a cat named "Charlie" from the pound today. Charlie is a macho kinda guy, and another cat that nobody wants to adopt since he's not a kitten. My son's cat, Reyes (named after Jose Reyes of the Mets) will be mad. Oh well! UPDATE: We adopted Charlie Sunday night. It pays to have a co-worker who also works at the pound :-)
I've been back to see "Sweet Melissa" for physical therapy (PT) twice this past week. I'm approved for 3 more visits, and this time I WILL get my shit together by joining the gym there and strengthening my ridiculously weak left leg, and not so strong either right leg. I have had absolutely no motivation to run lately. That's not like me. The weather has been perfect for running. I used to have the excuse that my left knee was bothering me. I don't have that excuse now. It feels about 90%, and I'm confident will be 100% real soon. I joined a running group a few months ago, but out of its 200 or so members, only about 5 actually go out and run as a group. They run about 10 miles from my house, which is fine. What isn't fine is their 8 a.m. weekend runs and no scheduled weekday evening runs. So I guess in reality the free running group I joined is not really a running group at all. I have a few co-workers that have told me for the past 6 months that they either want to learn to run, or just go for a run with me. You guessed it-it hasn't happened. I've given up reminding them it's time to get their asses out and run. So running alone=less motivation for me to run. I'm registered for a half in a month. Time to get it together. So, a start. I joined a team of 14 women and 3 men and will be running next Saturday, June 5th, in the Susan G. Komen Race For the Cure. It's a 5K race and walk to raise money for breast cancer. I'm on a team called "Sonny's Girls." LOL at the team name if you want. My daughter and 2 co-workers are on the team with me. We need to raise $1500 as a team. I know a lot of you donated money to team Autism Speaks when I ran the NY City Marathon last November, but if you have a spare $5 or so that you can donate, please do. Just click on the link here.
As usual, you guys are very supportive whenever I post. As usual, I'm a week behind on blogging. I won't apologize (Thanks, Anne), but I will say once again "Thanks." Thanks for reading my blog, thanks for writing your blogs, and most importantly THANKS for supporting "Iron Mike" after I posted on May 23rd that he needs our support. Isn't it wonderful what a great support group of runners/bloggers you all are? You're 73 of my favorite friends, even though I've only met 4 of you in person. Enjoy the remainder of this weekend, and don't forget the reason we have a three day weekend: It's not about the cookouts and sales at the mall. The real meaning behind Memorial Day is to honor service men and women who died while serving our country.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

I Need to Get My Lazy Ass Out For a Run

Please, no comments necessary (Unless you want to)! I have absolutely no motivation to run lately. What's up with that? Plus I'm a week behind with blogging. OK, I'm a visual learner, and since I posted this, now it means I HAVE TO get my lazy ass out for a run....and catch-up best I can on your blogs...and then post about how I didn't let myself down and actually did go for a run.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

PLEASE Read This, A Fellow Runner Needs Our Support

One of my Followers, 30 year old "Iron Mike," had a Transient Ischemic Attack, or a mini-stroke. As of this past Friday, he was in the hospital. His running blog only has five followers, as he's relatively new to blogging. It would be nice if all of you that follow my blog send him your "Get Well Soon" wishes via his blog. Also, please encourage your "Followers" to do the same. I'm also dedicating my next run to him, and hope that you and your Followers will also dedicate your runs to him. We as running bloggers are one large family. Let's all support "Iron Mike." Thank-you for your help. Rick

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Important Stuff: Metabolism Explained in Simple Form

Welcome new Followers: SeeGirlRun, Pat, and Ewa

Week in Review: 5/8-5/16

Total: Ran 4 days
17.4 miles total
2:31:36 total time; average pace per mile 8:42

8 days since my last post. I have not had the motivation to run or to blog. They're connected, in that when I do run, I don't have any outstanding runs to comment about. They're just runs. Period. They're runs that involve me forcing myself to get into my running clothes and go run. They're runs that I know will initially start with my troublesome left knee freaking out and perhaps giving me a twinge or two of pain, and definitely the "not quite right" feeling, followed by it behaving shortly thereafter for the rest of my run. Weird thing is that my knee bothers me the most whenever I'm lying in bed or standing or sitting still. It's "happiest" whenever I'm running. I said I was joining the gym at the physical therapy place I was going to. Well, I did but I didn't. They have all my paperwork, and my membership begins the first time I go there. The first time hasn't happened yet. It needs to happen. It needs to happen because 1 of 2 things will result. Either the exercises will strengthen my left leg and knee to the point where I can run "normal" again; or the exercises will not work and I'll go back to my doctor and insist on having a MRI on my left knee. I know I have crepitus , but I also feel like there's more to my knee problems than that. Joining the gym I found out yesterday will have an additional benefit. I attended a Weight Watchers staff meeting (I work for them part time) yesterday and learned about metabolism. I'm going to share with you the valuable information that was given to me. "Simply put, metabolism is the number of calories the body burns on a daily basis. The three components of metabolism are: 1) Resting Metabolism,
2) Physical Activity, and 3) Calories Used to Process Food.
1) Resting Metabolism consists of the calories used to keep the body going. Resting Metabolism is the biggest part of total metabolism; it burns between two-thirds to three-quarters of the calories your body uses in a day. The "engine" of Resting Metabolism is lean body mass, which includes muscles, bone mass, blood, organs-everything except the fat. Lean body mass is the biggest determinant of how many calories your Resting Metabolism requires. 2) Physical Activity: Calories burned in physical activity are the most variable part of metabolism, and also the component over which you have the most control. Physical activity is great, affecting more than one segment of metabolism. Resistance training can increase lean mass which increases Resting Metabolism. So, me joining the gym and doing resistance training for my leg(s) and knee has added benefits in that it should increase my lean muscle mass, which in turn increases Resting Metabolism, and Resting Metabolism burns between two-thirds and three-quarters of the calories your/my body uses in a day." A win-win situation for me, and those of you already using resistance training. Ladies, it's ok to hate us men. "Men have more lean mass and less body fat than women. So men have more lean body tissue. Therefore, at rest, men need more calories to keep that lean body tissue going, and we burn more calories in the course of the day. 3) Calories Used to Process Food accounts for 10% of the calories we burn everyday. Speaking of calories, studies have shown that people who eat a light breakfast weigh less than those people who skip breakfast or eat a heavy breakfast." P.S. I n my latest effort to eat/drink more healthy, I haven't had any diet soda (or any soda at all) since May 1st. Thank-you Jill for motivating me to make this healthy choice.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

I Have a Life, and So Do You

Week in Review: 4/30-5/7

Total: Ran 3 days; 11.1 miles; 1:35:47; average pace per mile 8:37

My job has gotten in the way of blogging. I work in a High School classroom as a Teacher's Assistant at a private school for students with learning disabilities. The past week has been hectic. The teacher I work with had 2 PPT's to prepare for and attend, meaning I pretty much ran the classroom for two days, we had a student from our lower school (elementary) visit our classroom for a day, and we're trying to complete 6 art projects per student x 9 students before next Thursday. Did I mention that two of our students are ADHD and not on meds?! You get the idea. I used to worry about not keeping up with everyone's blogs. I would feel like I was a bad person because after all, all of you are my "blog buddies," and blog buddies read one another's blogs and support one another. Then on April 27, Anne had a very meaningful comment to a post I wrote where I apologized for being a "slacker." She said "Don't think of it as slacking, think of it as having a life :)
We'll still be here..." That helped put everything into perspective for me. I'm up to 71 "Followers", with about 20 of you loyally commenting on my posts. I in turn comment on your blogs, and whatever other blogs I have time to read. I think all or most of us understand that if we don't comment on every post we read, that's ok. If we don't write about every run and/or workout we do, that's also ok. It doesn't mean we don't care, or we're not interested in each others blogs. It simply means we have a life. I needed to be told that. So, blog buddies, I still love you all, but no more apologies if I don't post in a timely manner, or if I get behind in reading your blogs. I have a life, as you do, and at some point I will make the effort to "ketchup" on your blogs and my blog. Especially those of you who are my loyal 20 Followers. By the way, I noticed that Anne is a Psychologist. I wish I lived closer to Quebec, Canada. I sure could use her services at times. :-) Thanks again, Anne.
My running continues to go well. I'm running less miles and less days per week, but my times are steadily improving. I'm not concerned with the miles and days run at this point. My next race is a 5K in four weeks, and my half marathon isn't until June 27. My left knee continues to be annoying, meaning it gets stiff while I sleep, and whenever I sit for an extended period of time. It doesn't hurt while I run, but the stiffness and crepitus don't appear to be going away any time soon. I've joined the fitness center at the physical therapy place I've been going to (not the one with "Hot Chick"), so next week I'll begin working on strengthening my weaker left leg. "Sweet Melissa," my latest P.T., is designing a strengthening exercise program for my bothersome left leg. I'm hoping the leg and knee exercises and stretching along with icing my knee post run will be an effective solution.
Well, I'm going to see if I can get caught up reading and commenting on your blogs this weekend. If I don't, then so be it. After all, I have a life, and so do you. However, I can always promise that your comment on my blog guarantees you my comment on your blog. Meaning, thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Have a great weekend, and kick ass(phault) if you're racing.