Tuesday, August 19, 2008

RETURN TO DARKNESS


I was pretty surprised to see how dark out it was still this morning at 6 am before my run. Its only the middle of August, and already mornings are staying darker longer. I don't want to think of all the darkness facing us in the months ahead. And while there was a full moon, it was obscured by all the clouds, so it seemed darker than usual.

There was a pretty stiff wind blowing out of the northeast, making it feel cooler than it was as well. And while I can't say I've been slacking these last couple of weeks, my workout numbers have been down because of my vacation and other crazy schedule. I've been gone 3 weekends in a row and had to make the hard decision to not do another race this coming weekend and being gone again.

This past weekend was a trip to the Allen County Fair in Lima, Ohio to see Lynrd Skynrd. It was a great venue for an outdoor concert, but it also meant 3 hours of driving one way. I'm guessing I've driven about 2500 miles or more in the last 2 weeks!

So I've been tired, dragging in fact. Today was only a 3 mile run, but I'll be riding my bike tonight as well. I will be making a decision this week about whether and which half IM I will do next. I feel like I have been cheated out of the opportunity to do an actual half IM triathlon, but at the same time my race plans had purposely included a vacation immediately following Steelhead, with the plan to not have to do any training for at least a couple of weeks. Instead? I felt obligated to keep up some semblance of training while gone, not only to keep up on the training if I wanted to do another race, but also because the first day of my vacation was the start of our annual work Virtual Race, where to win the race I would have to complete 370 miles in 4 weeks.

Every year the "race" organizers have upped the distance because apparently some think either those of us who have won have cheated or because its "too easy" for those of us who actually do exercise on a regular basis. The first year, it was 175 miles, which I pulled off in one week. Last year it was 250 miles, which I managed in 2.5 weeks and came in second, mainly because I was not as motivated to win again and because of my ankle sprain. This year, because of complainers, the organizers felt it was appropriate to divide the "race" into two categories: one for low impact and one for high. Low impact included things like housework, walking, swimming, etc. High impact included things like running, biking, soccer, tennis, etc. The low impact people only have 175 miles to cover; the high impact people have 370.

So what do you think of this? The person with the highest totals for low impact is already at 120 after 2 weeks. The person with the highest totals for high impact is at 208. Jan is in the lead of the high impact, and rightly so. But the person with the 120 miles? She's a walker. How do you walk that much in two weeks?? Even if you add up every single step you take in a day (and most of them do just to get their totals up), that would mean walking at least 8.5 miles per day. Jan and I are busting our butts to get the totals we have (I currently have 111 miles since Aug. 4). Each week they also have a winner for each category with the highest weekly total. At least 3 of the 4 winners leave me wondering whether they even walked around the block, let alone had the highest totals. It doesn't add up to either of us.

Regardless of how I do this year, I will push hard until the end of the month and see what happens. Either way, I can use the training for any upcoming events I end up doing.

And then there's the matter of spiders. I have noticed quite a few more signs of spiders trying to get a foothold in and around the house before winter, and today, even without my contacts in, there was no mistaking the quarter-sized brown fuzzy blob on the floor I saw in the dimness of the hallway:

Eeek! I'm just glad I had shoes on! My kitchen window has also become encased in the gauzy webbing of another huge spider. It comes and goes each time I am washing dishes or making meals. Creepy! I'm sure these creatures have a place in nature, but if they find their way into my home, a war will start to protect my territory!


12 comments:

jahowie said...

I'm with you on the spider thing. If I see them outside, I leave them alone, but once they invade my house, it's all over for them. I've noticed how dark it has been in the mornings already. Summer has flown by way too fast.

Running Knitter said...

I too have noticed how the sun is coming up later and later.

I hate spiders!

jeanne said...

not fair at ALL!

chia said...

Where did summer go? Wow.

Our work "excersize contest" thing starts in September. It's really a crock, the 7,500 steps a day people have just as much chance of winning as the 13,500 steps a day people. I'm all for being fair and promoting healthy lifestyles and all, but come on... where is the incentive if there isn't something to "push" for?

Jan is a rock star.

Are you still thinking Half IM this year or next spring? Maybe I could join your "support crew?"

Spiders in my house are ok as long as they don't touch me. I don't actively pursue them but it's lethal if they get too close ;)

Lily on the Road said...

Gawd, could you not have put a warning before the spider picture?? LOL. I let my speedy little friends stay in the house unless of course they are monsters, that would bite me in my sleep!

mmmm, Half Iron is on my list for 2009, but I haven't told anyone...oh, yikes, I've just told the world.

Cindy Jo said...

I'm looking forward to fall, but I am DREADING another MI winter. Last year about sent me over the edge and I wasn't even here the entire time!!!

See Zanne Run said...

oh man, my (old running) coach had these sorts of contests at his place of work & he would always complain about these sorts of things - couldn't figure out how he had run a marathon but some very obvious couch potato looking fellow had higher mileage. that sort of stuff would bug the bejesus out of me!

Lisa Slow-n-Steady said...

I noticed it getting dark earlier, haven't noticed it so much in the morning...yet. Bummer anyway!

Marcy said...

OMG OMG OMG That spider is nasty! I'm Ok with most but those big hairy ones give me the heebie jeebies.

Sunshine said...

Oh yes, we are doing OK.. lots going on. Will fill in details in the next few days.
So kind of you to ask.
We are seeing leaves turning/falling on the Trail.
The small signs of autumn: and we know that means winter not far behind... Sigh.
Your training reports are inspiring. Way to Go!

Sunshine said...
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Sunshine said...
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