Thursday, July 13, 2006


On top of the list--that includes only having to shower/do hair/makeup once a day, not having that morning drive, having it out of the way and not have to anticipate or worry about fitting a workout in later in the day--is, in the summer, heat and humidity. Today I rearranged my morning schedule even knowing I would have to fit some sort of workout in later. I hoped to bike, but chances of that started fading late morning, so the thought of a short run at lunch time started going through my mind more and more until I decided just to do it. It wasn't quite noon, my boss wasn't here yet (as is usual lately--but he had called and said he would be in after lunch), and, even though I had plenty of work to do, I was getting distracted by this and that until I finally made the decision to go. I did check the temperature and saw that it was 83. Now that's at least 10 degrees warmer than I would have liked, but it was a beautiful, cloudless blue sky out there awaiting.

It started out okay, but after about 15 min. I could feel my heart pounding far harder than I felt was normal. I was consoled only by the fact that there were numerous people around in the event of a heart attack! The humidity didn't seem too bad, but it was hot, no doubt. It felt hotter than 83. Reminded me of the days in Coeur D'Alene when it was so hot. I was thinking of going 20 min. out and turning back, but actually my route along the river ended thankfully at 19 min. so it seemed an opportune time to turn back. When you aren't used to running in the sunshine or heat, it does make a difference on your body. Not only does it make your heart work harder to try to cool you off, but for me the inevitable stomach cramps always hit as well. I want to try to overcome this, but its not like I know any way to totally prevent the stomach distress. It has always plagued me, so its not something new.

I was more than glad to turn back and get done and cool off again, although it was quite a while before I stopped sweating. I guess that's always a good time to stretch and take in more water.

Some of my joy of running is returning slowly, thanks to the ChiRunning I have taken the time to work on. While I haven't made huge progress in mileage, I feel I have made huge progress in other areas associated with my running. Aches and pains are minimal to non-existent. Flexibility is better. Stamina is increasing. Mental state is improving. Enjoyment is coming back as my fears of injury subside. When I think back to my early years of running, it was such great fun to push myself beyond limits I never knew before, compete in races and actually get age group awards, meet new people, go places, etc. It was like I had been so sheltered before that! And I had denied myself enjoyment in my daily life up to that time. I worked hard, took care of my family, and there was no nonsense or fun. Then I started running, and a whole new world opened up out there. For nine years I ran most days at lunch time. This caused me no end of stress, both physically and mentally, with my family and my job. I became obsessed, so I blame that on myself, not on running. I believe the cumulation of years of stress led to all the injuries I suffered for the next several years. And injury led to lack of enjoyment with the sport.

I would like to get some of that back--a reasonable amount. I don't think I have to worry about becoming obsessed to the point I was before, but a little obsession probably would do me some good!

So I will keep working on it, doing these hot runs at least occasionally, if not for "enjoyment" then for conditioning. If I can just keep the legs moving, I will keep trying.

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