Monday, September 30, 2013

My Boy (Needs a Haircut) and Some Thoughts on Running

Day 26: Sept. 30, 2013

Running makes me hungry. I get so hungry that I end up eating myself into a food coma well before dinner is ready. And I'm not sitting there savoring the food either. Usually I'm stuffing my face with nuts, chips, chocolate, cheese, whatever I come across in my kitchen while I'm washing dishes, making dinner, or straightening up. This doesn't happen to me with other forms of exercise. I can swim hard and not be famished within ten minutes. I can get a good workout on the elliptical trainer and control myself until pre-dinner drinking. Its weird. Running is sort of useless in this way.  I just end up eating every last calorie I burned within an hour of burning it.

Another thing is that running hurts. I've been advised to get the shoes that aren't actually shoes with the toe slots, which I plan on, but in the mean time my knees tend to get sore and tender, and since I never leave enough time to stretch, my muscles get tight and I often spend the rest of the day hobbling around in agony. The roller is excellent when I remember to use it. Its that hand held bar you can roll on your legs, and your muscles loosen up all nicely, and I tend to get involved in lots of stretches when I use it, but somehow I only use the dang thing once every ninety days.

Despite all of these drawbacks, I can't seem to stop running. I tried after I banged my knee into the corner of a drawer and couldn't run because of the pain. For three months I became an exclusive lap simmer, then added some elliptical in there, until finally, I could run a couple of miles and the knee felt ok. During this period, I was having panic attacks that I would never run again, trying to convince myself that swimming was a perfectly wonderful substitute (I actually love swimming, so this seemed plausible and reasonable.)

Here's the problem. You can't just put on your shoes and jog bra and go swimming. And you don't get to swim all over town to see the sights, the people, the clouds, the changing light, the rainbows. You can't fit swimming in at the last minute, because you have to have time to get to the pool, change the clothes, take a shower, sit in the hot tub, the sauna, the steam room, etc. And I'm new enough to swimming that I don't achieve the zen like state I do from running because I'm always kind of wondering if at any moment, I might start to drown.

I guess for me, Running is in my blood. My parents did it when I was little, and when I was in fourth grade, my PE teacher asked me to run the mile in the middle school track meet.  I did and came in second and from then on, I ran with my mom after school. On my tenth birthday, she gave me the choice of going on a run or going to the bakery to buy a birthday cake to bring to the family party, and I chose going on a run. Running has lifted me out of slumps, depression, ruts, gutters. Its just that for me. I'm looking forward to getting those shoes with the toes, though. As long as they live up to the hype. Who knows, I might just run another (1/2) marathon.

Coffee: No coffee for me today, but I'm still going strong with  my cup whenever I buy it, so that's good.

Cups and Bags Challenge: No emails today.  That's ok because I saw a lot of reusable cups around town today and felt encouraged. If you use a reusable cup to buy some coffee or any drink, email me here: and I'll send a dollar to Bring Recycling!


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