Monday, December 25, 2006


I hope everyone had a wonderful day. I know the world and life itself isn't perfect, but hopefully you had one day or so of happiness with those you love or doing something you love to do.

My weekend started on Christmas Eve, since I worked Saturday. By then, I was done with all my shopping--since I had no more money, it was easy to make that decision! But it was such a perfect day! Sunshine, blue skies, warm weather--and best of all (for me)--no snow. It was just an enjoyable day all around, weather and all.

I started the day with a run from the park. By the time I got there, everyone else had taken off, but I am okay with this. I wanted to run alone, at least for now. I am still a little hesitant to go out alone, but I did bring my cell phone. I decided to head down the river path, since with no snow it would be clear. I figured since I had run the 3 mile race the week before, today would be a good day to run to the footbridge over the river and back, about 4.4 miles total.

After just a few minutes on the path, I came to a flooded spot from all the heavy rains from the last two days and nights. I was hoping it wasn't too deep in the middle, so decided to go through, but sure enough, it was deep enough to cover my shoes, and it was freezing! Dammit, dammit, dammit, I said as I tried to hop through the puddle. My shoes were soaked and my feet were now icy, but I decided not to turn back. The rest of the path was higher ground, so I didn't expect any more flooding. With luck, there was none.

I am always bargaining with myself: I'll run 15 min. and walk; I'll run 20 min. and walk; I'll run a mile and walk. That is my downfall, allowing myself to walk when I really don't need to. I am running easy, I am not out of breath terribly, and I am certainly not sprinting, so no real reason, right? Right. So on and on it went. Before I knew it, I was coming upon 3 other ladies. As they got closer, I could see it was Libby, Kim, and an unknown person. We said hello and kept going. Sometimes I am saved from myself by the simple fact of running into other people--I don't want them seeing me walk, so I keep going, I push past my down times. By now, I was at about 15 minutes and I decided I was going to keep going.

Next, I came upon Lecia and Sue, both slower runners like me. I probably could have gone out with them today, but we didn't link up. They stopped, and I stopped, and I was glad for the short break. I told them I was going to the bridge and they let me know I was getting close. I was at 21 min. by then, so knew I was getting close, even though I couldn't see the bridge yet. So on I went, glad for the second wind.

At the bridge, I turned and did decide to walk a couple of minutes. But then I started back up and didn't really know what I would do except keep going. By the time I knew I was well into the third mile, I was really getting tired, and wanting to just be done, but then I remembered the puddle and decided if I made it that far without walking, I would walk through the puddle. On and on I trudged, and since I couldn't remember exactly where the flooded spot was, I had the stupid idea that it had somehow dried up while I was out (I wasn't out there that long), but I finally came to it and was tired enough by then that I let myself walk through it. It was just as unpleasant the second time. I was at 45 min. and I was about a half mile from the end. I kept checking to see if anyone was behind me, but I never saw anyone. I knew someone would probably come running up fast behind me, so I half expected someone at this point to just show up, but no one did.

I was finally off the path and back on the road and really wanted to be done. I was bargaining with myself again: just to the corner; just to 50 min.; just this and just that. By now, though, there were other people coming behind me, so now it was a matter of pride to keep plugging along to the end. I waved at the people already driving away, and tried to keep my mind off the overwhelming fatigue I was feeling. When I got to the end of the path, and was back at my car, it took me a few minutes to get my breath back. Another woman came over and asked how my injuries were, and proceeded to go into an account of when she broke 2 ribs two years ago and how she was still suffering from it, blah, blah, blah. I don't get it, because she runs far more than I do ever, and yet she still complains about her old broken ribs (which, I might add I was the cause of when I crashed my bike into her in a torrential rain and my bike slipped out from under me and into her, so I do feel responsible). Anyway, I was glad to be done and still had a full day ahead of me, so I chatted briefly and took off.

I met my daughter at the gym so she could work out and took one of the kids with me. I am glad to see she is working out on an almost daily basis. Even though she is about a size 2, at nearly 30 she was starting to go south, if you know what I mean. Working out these last few months has retoned her and she looks great again.

Austin, my grandson, and I were on a quest to find one more small stocking stuffer for my youngest son, which I had been unsuccessful finding up to this point. I should have known taking him shopping with me would wind up costing me more than I intended on spending! Always a sucker for treats, that's me.

We never found what I was looking for but found a suitable substitute and then headed home. I still had a day's worth of cooking to do for the next day and needed to finish decorating and cleaning the house. I had to bribe Austin with the prize of opening a gift early to help me with some stuff, although I'm sure he would have done it anyway! I had no time to think of being tired, and really didn't feel it, and even forgot about eating. We decorated the house, and then they had to leave for another party. I had the luxury of spending the next 4 hours puttering in the kitchen, making the food ahead of time, for our gathering the next day, listening to Christmas music. Still I forgot to eat.

By 5 o'clock, I was getting hungry and weary, but I had made huge progress for our Christmas day gathering. Don and I were going to the tri / running club Christmas Eve gathering that evening, and I still had to wrap a white elephant gift to bring.

The tri / running club has been gathering on Christmas Eve and Christmas morning for years. The first couple of years after my divorce, I at least had this to fall back on for Christmas Eve, but I was desparately lonely for my kids on that night and never really enjoyed myself until the last couple of years, when I finally realized this was the way things were, and I was lucky to have these friends to spend my favorite evening of the year with. Much as I wished my kids could be there, my consolation has been to have them all on Christmas Day.

We were to bring a gift to the party of something around the house that we no longer needed or used. I had a back pack I had gotten free a year before when I purchased $50 at a running store. I have 4 others, and had never used this, so it seemed a perfect solution. Then we play a sort of game where the object is everyone picks a number and then in number sequence, we get to pick a gift that appeals to us. The catch is that the next person up can "steal" your gift for themselves, and so on it goes. The hot item of the night was an old purse filled with 5 bottles of different beers. That made the rounds until someone was able to "steal" it back 3 times, which then you get to keep it; another was a mountain biking book and calendar. I ended up with a "regifted" portable foot massager. Who could have picked a better gift than that for me on that particular night? My feet were so tired, and it was a relief to slip them into the massaging slippers.

I was very tired by the time we left around 9:30, yet when I got home I still found other things that needed doing for the next day. Don and a bunch of others were meeting for their annual Christmas morning 5 mile run, but I told them when I left that night I would not make it.

The next morning, however, I got up again to the alarm, drank my coffee, and planned in my mind what I still needed to do that morning before everyone arrived, and plotted out whether I would go out and run or not. Two days in a row was going to be huge for me, but I felt I really needed to get a better workout in than just walking or nothing, after all the crap I had been eating the past few days. I finally got out the door, and was glad I hadn't passed up a chance to run on a mild, somewhat warm winter morning, with no snow and ice to hinder me.

I ran a little over 2 miles and was really whipped when I got home, but amazingly, I made it all day until about 7 pm before the yawns finally got the better of me. All the food was eaten, everyone seemed to have a great time, I got to send care packages home with the older kids, and I only ended up with 4 things to return! My dad was feeling okay that day also.

All in all, a wonderful Christmas!


Flo said...

Wow, sounds like you're really making some progress.

Also, sounds like you had a great holiday.

All in all sounds like a wonderful weekend.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great holiday!

sharon said...

It's why I train with others. It forces me to push myself.