Category Archives: workouts

The Marathon

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I watched part of the Twin Cities Marathon this morning, mostly because the course goes past my house, but also because it’s such an inspiring event to see in person. From the first wheelchair racers that have faced life-changing challenges, to the leaders who sail past gracefully, to the run/walkers that told themselves they could run a marathon and they’re doing it. It’s amazing.

Daughter and I ran outside just in time to see the leaders run by. She brought her drum, and I brought a mug of steaming tea to keep warm. She banged and I cheered, for the men, the moms, the veterans and the rookies. We looked for my coworker, missing him just as he went past. We looked for other friends, but applauded new ones instead. I cheered louder for the 40-44 year old women, and I told them their hair looked great, that they haven’t even broken a sweat.

This year I helped my neighbors hand out bananas, 600 lbs of them (I might have handed out 1 full lb). I watched the runners reach towards my outstretched arm, their hands and fingers moving unpredictably with the fatigue. Some said thank you, some cheered, some just nodded, completely spent.

Running 26.2 miles is amazing. The farthest I’ve run is 10.  And I barely made it. (Yes, I’ve done a sprint triathlon, but that’s just 5k!) I can’t imagine doing 26.2. But for those that can and those that want to some day, go for it. You can do it. And when you run past, We’ll cheer for you loudly and then hand you a banana.

Nearly Three Strikes

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(image from wikipedia)

It’s been a day.

I ran over to the club at lunch to swim laps. I had to talk myself into going. Talk myself into leaving the comfort of my desk, the piles of work that needed to get done. But I knew I’d feel better after I spent a half-hour in the pool. I’d work better, be less distracted, actually get MORE done.  So I pulled myself up and out to the parking ramp and drove the 10 blocks to the club. I plugged the meter, waited for green to cross the street, opened the door and was stopped abruptly by a large sign.

“Club closed due to Water Main Break. Please use our other locations.”

I stood and stared at it. I wanted to swim. I didn’t want to drive somewhere else. I already plugged my meter. I wanted to swim. My pool, and I realized, my suit were behind that sign.

Strike One.

I went back to the office, complained a bit, ate my frozen lunch and then had a Dilly Bar.

Fast forward to the end of the day. We ate dinner. We cleaned up. We even played for a few minutes when we realized we should be outside. The plan was we’d all ride to the lake, Husband and Daughter would play on the playground while I swam, and then we’d all bike home. A perfect plan.

I bent down to fill up my tires, which were just a tad low, and then I heard the hiss. And not a little hiss, but a loud hiss. I felt the tire. It was soft. really soft. Much softer than it had been just a moment earlier when I checked it. Somehow when I opened up the air nozzle the whole thing went flat.

Strike Two.

But Husband came to the rescue. He handed over his bike and said he and Daughter would walk to a closer playground. That’s my guy. So, I hopped on his bike, which I’ve never ridden and popped over to the lake. I spent most of my time on the bike learning his gears and forgetting my feet weren’t clipped in. Imagine me falling at a stop light because I can’t get my feet off his naked pedals. I can.

But I made it. I made it to the lake. And along with probably 100 other swimmers (seriously, there’s a race this weekend, so it was crowded) I swam. I wanted to go across the lake (600 yards) but I wasn’t sure I had time (I had about 25 minutes before the lifeguards left) and my first time in Open Water I didn’t want to push it. Besides, I was alone. And I already had two strikes against me.

So I swam for a while. And then I turned back. The swim back to shore was against the wind and pretty tough. I didn’t panic, and heard Dory/Ellen’s voice as I made it back to shore. I took the long way back home on Husband’s bike and was grateful I got my swim in. Grateful I pushed myself to do it. Grateful Husband understood I needed to ride, to swim.

And grateful I didn’t get that third strike.

I’m going to bed.