Monday, November 18, 2013

Reflecting on the Good Stuff

Reflecting.... get it??  Because it's getting dark SO early (and getting light SO late), it's time for a chat on safe running practices.  Today I went for Week 2 Day 2 of my Cast 25K program after work.  I left right at 4:00, after explaining to my team in a meeting earlier that, despite the fact that we had a vendor flown up from North Carolina in all day meetings, I really needed to leave in time to run before it got dark.  The response was blank stares - tough room.  But I think the organization problem-solving awesomeness that I had laid out for everyone in the morning session more than made up for that.  So anyway, my slavish devotion to my job landed me on the streets in running gear about about 30 minutes before sundown.

Home sweet office

I had with me a reflective slap bracelet I got for free at a running store (this photo is deceptively dark).  I finished just as the sun was going down, after waving that sucker for all I was worth at all the passing cars on my route.  As I was wearing a green tied-dyed running hoody and grey pants, with the exception of that bracelet I was probably about as eye-catching as a pinecone.  Very bad.

So this is the heart rate graph for my workout, which consisted of three minute walking and one minute running intervals.  The blue is where my HR was supposed to be.  The line is what I actually did.  2% compliance.  Now, it has been said that I am a headstrong idiot set to self destruct mode have stubborn-ness issues.  I prefer to think of it as determination.  But I cannot deny that I ran those one minute intervals at increasingly high paces until my last one was just over a 7:00 minute mile pace.  Oops.  You might also notice that I ran a bit longer and/or earlier than strictly necessary on some of them.  So much for perfectly sticking to the recovery C25K plan.  In my defense, I have no pain in my foot for the first time since before Labor Day, so I was a little excited.  Plus, it was getting dark....

Before anyone starts yelling, I have more reflective gear on order from Amazon, plus I stopped at Dick's on the way home and got a strobe clip for future runs.  While I was there drooling over gear, this also happened:

This from the man who also told Gypsy and I that if we just rode our bikes fast enough we wouldn't ever get wet in the rain.  Hmm.  Thanks Jedi.

Earlier in the morning (before the organizational awesomeness meeting), Boss Scarecrow and I were chatting about what we like to do - really like to do - with our time to unwind.  He and his wife are all about the massages (who knew?).  I do like massages, pedicures and other typical girly stuff well enough, but honestly I decided my best "pampering" treatment is time alone in my own house with no kids and nothing to do.  Cat in lap, fireplace going, a good book, and maybe a glass of wine.  Or tea.  Whatever.

That conversation, the amazing blog No Cigarettes No Bologna's most recent post about guilty pleasures, and people incessantly daily posting of what they are grateful for on Facebook during the month of November has me thinking of what I most enjoy and am grateful for.  I'm finally figuring out that the "secret to life" is not having a deeply meaningful job, checking goals off a list, material possessions, or any other self-help style crap, but rather the continual pursuit of pasttimes that make you feel really really good.  As NCNB says "Kids dance like no one is watching, because they don't don't give a shit.  They just dance."  Amen, kids!
So in no particular order, these are my guilty and not-so-guilty pleasures. (I'll leave you to decide which I should be guilty about....)

  • My cats.  You may have noticed this already.  I have two, and on any given day I would rather spend time in their company than just about anyone else on the planet.  I'm also convinced that they are the only creatures that love me unconditionally.  Even the white one, who pooped in my closet as a "welcome home Mom" present for me tonight.  I live every day with the assurance that when I am an old woman, when my children have grown up and moved out, and Jedi has left me for a 20-something with perky boobs at the ability to run a sub-2 hour half marathon, that I will be warm and comforted with the love of the many shelter cats I will have adopted.
  • Really bad, trendy workout music.  Like that idiot song about crashing your car into a bridge on a summer day that plays at every race possible.  I become a thirteen year old girl while exercising.  I also have let this bleed over into my actual work, where I listen to Pandora turned to the "Cups Radio" Station all afternoon to stay awake.  A coworker once caught me humming a line from a Taylor Swift song - I didn't stop hearing about it for weeks.  Newest love is Lady Gaga.  Oh Gaga......

  • Dancing in my car.  To music from #2.  To the point that people look at me strangely at stop lights.  To the point I take my hands off the wheel to clap during the chorus of Black Eyed Peas "Pump It".  (I only do this while alone, however.  That's not true - I totally car dance with the kids too.  With hands on wheel).  I also like to sing as loudly and as out of tune as possible while performing this action, even though I do have a decent singing voice.  I just like to scream in my car.  
  • Fantasy novels.  No not that kind - my goodness.  You've got a smutty mind!  I couldn't even get past the first few chapters of 50 Shades for crissake.  I'm talking about anything involving dragons, lost orphans discovering they actually have magic powers, crystal anything... I'm set.  From Games of Thrones to Tolkien to all the lesser wannabe geek authors... this is my beach reading.  I remember being genuinely upset to turn 13 because I realized I was too old to get into Narnia.  Still am upset, actually....
  • Wearing my husband's hoodies.  Especially when I'm sick.  Not the gross one that he wears every day (why??) with the zipper, but the pullover type with the Patriots logo on the front that I got him for Fathers Day five years ago and he never wears.  Even though they are way too big and I would never leave the house in them.  Maybe.....
  • Glee.  I love reliving every adolescent moment of dramatic angst I had while being my high school's Queen Band Geek and theater diva.  You might remember that my tri coach Sheriff and friend Maid Marion also hail from this time.  I make no apologies and cried like a baby while watching the episode memorializing Cory Monteith.  So sad.
  • Cuddling my son to sleep every night.  This one might sound like a cliche, but really - he is the best cuddler in the world.  I know that you're supposed to let children fall asleep on their own lest they grow up with severe mommy issues and an inability to self-regulate. And he can.  But he falls asleep within 5 minutes of laying down - ALWAYS.  He is warm and non-wiggly and his bed is comfy and he tells me that he will still need cuddles every night until he is fifty.  I wonder what his wife will think about that?  Oh well... she'll share....

What are your guilty pleasures?  How do you unwind?  What embarrassing things can you secretly not live without?

And how do you stay safe on the roads in the dark?  What should be on my Christmas list in this category?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I really need to buy some reflective clothing. I'm about to try out Knuckle Lights so I don't trip in the dark, but otherwise I just have a flashing red light to clip on myself.

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