Archive for the ‘Running & Exercise’ Category


Wednesday, June 27th, 2007

Just got back from a hot, sticky run in the hot, sticky heat, and in my delirium and shaky state, I managed to break the end of a plug off in the Treo’s headset jack. Great. I managed to get the end of the plug out of the Treo, but the headphone is shot now, unless anyone can reassure me that I can replace a plug on the end of a headset cord and have it sound OK.

Runnin’ & Writin’

Monday, June 25th, 2007

I need to remember that not only is a good workout healthy and stress-relieving, but it also always seems to leave me chock-full of good song ideas. Awesome.

The year in review

Wednesday, December 15th, 2004

Borrowed from and many others; edited for stuff I care about answering. I linked to a lot of stuff throughout; my apologies if any links lead to where you, dear reader, cannot follow.

Review of 2004

What did you do in 2004 that you’d never done before?

Ran a road race. It was the Park Forest Scenic 10, and it was quite the learning experience.

Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I did, for the most part.

I wanted to run a half-marathon (13.1 miles) but I only ran a 10-mile race. Still, it’s close.
I’m doing OK with the three goals around my nutrition.
I haven’t really made much progress on my guitar playing.
I have sort of made more time for songwriting.
The debt is effectively gone.
And I’ve done better with organizing my wardrobe, but I’m planning to address this in the new house in a major way.

What would you like to have in 2005 that you lacked in 2004?

More time with friends, more time for songwriting, more money to spend on fun things. I’m starting to get closer to attaining all of these, and I want that trend to continue.

What date from 2004 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

Work dates come to mind first: March 29th, when we launched our product to the corporate campus; November 15th, when we shut down the legacy product.

And, of course, November 2nd.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?

I dunno, maybe writing 15 songs in 30 days, even if that fell far short of my 30-song goal.

What was your biggest failure?

I can’t think of anything significant. I feel good about that.

Did you suffer illness or injury?

I injured my knee doing a 10-mile run on May 31st. I probably already had an injury, but the long run flared it up. That turned into iliotibial band troubles, which led to hip troubles, which led to possible bursitis and a prolonged break from running. I stopped running for the month of June, but spent July and August training for the Scenic 10, and I wasn’t fully recovered. I laid off for the rest of September, October, and ran a few miles in late November before realizing I still wasn’t recovered. I probably won’t be running again for a few more months, much to my frustration and dismay.

What was the best thing you bought?

My Clie.

Where did most of your money go?

This year was all about finishing up the debt repayment. And since I’m such a Quicken addict, I can give you percentages. Aren’t you excited?

The vast majority of it went toward paying off a single credit card. (23.94%)
Another large sum went to taxes. (13.53%)
Then rent. (9.27%)
Then another credit card. (7.99%)
Then savings for future house renovations, 401(k), and downpayment, respectively. (7.67%, 6.20%, 5.79%)
Household expenses. (4.58%)
Another two credit cards. (3.06% and 2.59%)
Groceries. (2.11%)
Car stuff. (1.66%)

Ain’t we got fun?

WAY down the list, you start to see things like:
Vacation (0.99%) - but this includes the trips to Chicago for my dad’s chemo treatments. Whee.
Songwriting (0.66%) - we’ll spend more on this in 2005 when we record some more demos.
Dining (0.65%) - we don’t eat out much.
Entertainment (0.50%) - and most of that has probably been spent in the past month.
Recreation (0.12%) - this includes my race fees and running shoes. Whoop de doo!

What did you get really, really, really excited about?

Our new kitten, Bopper.

What song will always remind you of 2004?

“Live Like You Were Dying” written by Craig Wiseman and Tim Nichols and recorded by Tim McGraw.

What do you wish you’d done more of?

Take vacation time. I worked a hell of a lot of hours. All that overtime certainly helped pay off the debt, but I have serious knots in my shoulders to show for it. Our in-town vacation, while fun, wasn’t nearly enough.

What do you wish you’d done less of?

I wish there’d been no reason for all those trips to Chicago for my dad’s treatments. But I’m glad I was able to be there and help out, and I’m certainly grateful to for generously volunteering to watch our kitties during one of those trips. And when I say I want less of it in 2005, I mean that I want my dad to be healthy again.

What was the best book you read?

“About A Boy” by Nick Hornby. Much better than the film, although I love Hugh Grant (or “Huge Grunt,” as Karsten and his sister refer to him) in just about anything.

What was your greatest musical discovery?

I don’t know, really! Maybe it was the discovery that I can, in fact, write lyrics to existing melody. Not that I haven’t done it before this year, but I usually choke when faced with a melody I have a lot of respect for.

What did you want and get?

Pre-qualification for the mortgage I wanted. I’d say “a house,” but we haven’t quite signed the paperwork yet.

What was your favorite film of this year?

It may be 10 years old, but I just saw “Before Sunrise” a few months ago, and I loved it so much. “Before Sunset” was very good, too, but it felt a little contrived whereas “Sunrise” just felt spontaneous and beautiful. Wow.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

My birthday hasn’t come around yet in 2004. I’ll be 31 on 12/23.

What is at least one thing that would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

Not having to deal with my sister’s ridiculous crap on top of everything else.

Who did you miss the most this year?

My good friend and former co-worker, Tom Johnson. He’s a nut, and I love ‘im, and I miss hanging out with him.

Who was the best new person you met?

No one but Karsten has ever made more of an impression on me in a shorter span of time than has. I was hoping to find good friends this year, and he’s a great find and a definite keeper.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2004:

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst, keep a brave face, and enjoy yourself every minute you can. Life is short and precious.

(Actually, I’m sure I learned that long before 2004, but it’s a lesson I keep learning again and again.)

Quote a song lyric that sums up your year:

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes
You just might find
You get what you need

Vacation, day #6

Thursday, July 29th, 2004

We received word from our apartment property manager yesterday that they were doing some work this morning requiring us to move our car from the lot by 8:00 AM, so it seemed like a good morning to go out for breakfast. Headed over to Murphy’s Loft Cafe (formerly the Red Rooster Cafe) for day-old muffins (only $1!) and coffee & juice. We enjoyed the opportunity to sit outside and leisurely sip our drinks.

Then, since all clothing at Salvation Army is 50% off on Wednesdays, it was time to do a little thrift shopping. Didn’t really find anything, which is just as well since I just bought a zillion new-to-me articles of clothing a few weeks ago.

Alright, now this is kind of embarassing. I had a coupon from the back of a Kroger receipt for a week free at Curves, which is right down the street. I thought, hey that’s convenient — I won’t have to go the office and I can still work out. I didn’t know. I swear I didn’t know! I thought it was a gym. It’s not a gym. It’s some kind of demented 30-second rotation half-hour fitness program and weigh-you-in and take-your-measurements thing. I listened politely to the woman give me the tour of the place but as soon as she said “Alright, let’s take your measurements!” I said “I don’t think I need to waste any more of your time. I don’t think this is right for me. I thought it was a gym. I was looking for treadmills. Cardio equipment. Things like that.” And she said, “Yeah, I can look at you and see you don’t need to lose weight, but I didn’t want to say anything.” She didn’t want to say anything? Until what? Until I actually did lose weight? That place is weird. Weird weird weird.

So anyway, I left, but I was all psyched up for a workout, and now I had to decide if it was worth it to me to go to the office and risk feeling stress on my vacation just to work out. And then it dawned on me that I could run in Centennial Park instead! But I was nervous about that because I haven’t run on pavement since my injury. And then I remembered that I had my rollerblades in the trunk. So I got good and warmed up by rollerblading five laps on the mile loop and then felt comfortable running two laps.

Got back home, showered, dressed, and went out with Karsten to Kalamata’s. I ordered their baba ghannouj for the first time, and it was wonderful. Nice and smoky, just the way I like it.

Went furniture-browsing (”furniture-ogling” is more like it) at Nouveau Classics and 2 Danes. Must get rich so I can afford cool mid-century modern and contemporary Scandinavian furniture in my home. Someday.

Dinner at Tayst. Yum! We started with the Chickpea Cake, which was served in some kind of delicious sauce. I can’t remember how it was described on the menu and I know I can’t do it justice, but it was unbelievably good. Followed that with the Bibb Salad with (I think it was) fennel-infused walnut oil vinaigrette. For the entree, we split a very elegant baked potato with vegetable spears marinated in a ginger sauce and served in a half-red, half-yellow pool of gazpacho and ginger sauce. I finished with a scoop of raspberry-black licorice sorbet, which was just about the best thing I’ve ever tasted. It was spectacular, although Karsten says it was a bit dada for his preference. Still, he had to admit that the service was outstanding and even if the menu was a bit pretentious, the service certainly was not.

After dinner, we decided to swing by the Commodore Bar & Grill, which is one of the writers’ nights venues that became popular after several of the other ones mysteriously shut down last year within several weeks of each other. Anyway, after all this time, we’d still not checked it out. We ran into a friend who was playing a feature set tonight, so that was a nice surprise.

And then it was back home. And now I’m getting sleepy. It’s been a good, long day.

Uh oh.

Monday, July 26th, 2004

I miscalculated. Last week, I anticipated that I’d be eager to do really long workouts this week, and Karsten and I planned that he’d skip his daily run for the week as his vacation and I’d do super-long workouts each day as mine.

There’s just one problem: the gym is at the office.

Now, I knew this, of course. But I still figured it would be no problem. After all, the gym is in a different building from the one where I work, and if I went there a little later than my usual time (no reason to start my workout at 6 AM when I’m on vacation) I probably wouldn’t even run into the usual crowd, and so no one but the security guys at the front desk would need to be the wiser.

But I woke up this morning — well, more to the point, I slept in until 7:30 and then woke up this morning — with no desire to follow the same patterns I do every weekday morning. I feel like working out, but I want to do it here. Or outdoors, nearby. Work’s not far away at all, but it’s the fact that I’d be driving the same route that I do every day… you know. It’s tedious.

So I dunno. I’ll do my usual stretching/yoga/dance thing that I do throughout the day every day, and maybe I’ll do a concentrated dance workout or something. But for today, at least, I’m not going to the gym.

I’m sure I seem to be making a big deal out of nothing, but it’s incredibly, stupidly difficult for me to find ways to relax. I thought the extra-long workout would be relaxing, but it seems that it’s more relaxing to not have to drive to the office. At least for today. There’s always the rest of the week.

Working out in recovery

Thursday, July 22nd, 2004

Tough workout this morning. After 2 miles on the treadmill, I had to hop off, stretch, and do some other exercises like squats and Roman chair bends. Then I got back on the treadmill for another 2 miles, but it was really rough going the whole time.

I guess it’s understandable, though. Yesterday I did my fastest run since my injury, so my muscles may still be trying to recover. It was still not fast, mind, but I kept a steady 10 min/mile pace, which is significant improvement from my 12 min/miles two weeks ago. I’ll try to keep up the 10:00 pace for a little while longer before I start shooting for under 10 min/mile over a longish run. It’s tough to be patient about this because before my injury, I was working my way into the 7 min/mile range. I expect it’ll be months before I regain that kind of speed. But at this point I’m more concerned about regaining my mileage than my speed, and that’s steadily improving.

Unless I’m running off at the mouth…

Wednesday, July 7th, 2004

Did my first run in over four weeks this morning. I trotted along slowly for about a mile, with some walking and stretching interspersed throughout. Then I hopped off the treadmill and did 10 minutes or so on the elliptical, then got back on the treadmill and ran without walking for another mile.

I felt sure I’d have some achiness today, but it’s not too bad. A little twinge-iness in my knee and hip, but nothing nearly as bad as it’s been over the past few weeks even without having run.

Check this out, though: my jaw locked up at lunch today. I was having a lunch meeting and I’d just finished my sandwich when my jaw felt like it came unhinged on the right side. I wiggled it around trying to pop it back into place, but the longer it stayed out of whack, the worse it hurt until I was finally crying and my colleagues were asking if I needed to go to the emergency room. Finally the pain started to subside and my jaw gradually felt like it was mostly back in place, but even now, 9 hours later, it’s still kind of achey.

I had no idea running could hurt my jaw.

I don’t do resolutions…

Friday, January 2nd, 2004

but here are some things I’d like to accomplish this year.

Run a half-marathon, at least. I had hopes of running the Country Music Marathon in April, but between the weather and my wicked work schedule, I lost a lot of valuable training time in November and December. With only three months left to train (and at least two months of bad weather left, and still a fairly wicked work schedule), I won’t make the marathon. I’m still hopeful about the half-marathon, though. And even if I don’t manage that one, I’m intent on being able to do it by the end of the summer.

Increase the amount and diversity of raw veggies I eat. I already do fairly well at this, but I’d like to be better about it.

Increase my nutrient:calorie ratio. Same as above, and will certainly be aided by implementation of above.

Decrease the amount of useless fat I eat. Again, I’m pretty good about this, but I still munch a little too much chocolate a little too often, and french fries never did anything good for anyone, even when they’re only eaten once in a great while.

Improve my guitar skills. I let this slip because of my wicked work schedule, but I really need to work on my guitar playing. It could be such a valuable songwriting tool, and I just haven’t taken the time to practice and improve.

Make more time for songwriting. My day job has been top priority for a few months, and that’s fine because it pays the bills. But once the big push is over (and it should return to normal by the end of March), I need to get back to spending serious amounts of time on writing songs.

Accelerate debt reduction plan. As of yesterday’s session with Quicken, my… our… THE debt will be paid off in May 2005, which is thrilling (only a few months ago I was excited to think it would be paid off by September 2007!) — but I’m a never-settle-for-less-than-everything kind of person, and I want to see if I can make it go away even faster.

Organize my clothes. This seems so minor in comparison to the others, but it’s really such an annoyance. I have a fairly generous closet space, but I have a lot of clothes because I basically have four wardrobes: my smart-and-professional work clothes, my sexy-and-stylish out-and-about clothes, my ever-growing collection of workout wear for all seasons, and my comfy-and-hip stay-at-home clothes. I need to find a way to make it all tidy and easy to access.

Random countdown & countup

Sunday, November 23rd, 2003

Milestones upcoming and past. This helps me stay aware of what a given period of time feels like.

  • Just under a month until I see my dad, maybe for the last time.
  • One month exactly until I turn 30.
  • Two months (when the music executives are all back in their offices after the holidays) until we can really get back to trying to pitch our songs.
  • Three months, maybe four, until I can pay off the heaviest credit card I now carry.
  • Four months until the system I work on is widely released.
  • Five months until the Country Music Marathon.
  • Two years until I pay off my credit cards under the new, more aggressive payment plan.
  • Two years and four months until we can buy a house.
  • Two years and eight months since we left California.
  • Almost two years since I stopped dating other people.
  • A year and ten months since we left Portland.
  • Nine months since we came to Nashville.

Ready to run!

Thursday, November 6th, 2003

I finally got over to the running store on the other side of the park from my office. It was worth holding out for: the guy took my foot measurements, asked how many miles I’m running per week, whether I’m training for anything specific, and a few other questions, and produced a pair of Saucony shoes that felt like heaven. He took me outside to watch me run a bit in them, made a few other suggestions — another Saucony model and a New Balance — and they were good, too, but nowhere near as comfortable as the first pair.

It’s just staggering how many different running shoe models are out there, how much information there is to know about them (overpronator, underpronator, or neutral? which models are built for which foot shape? extra cushioned or extra lightweight? and on and on). I’ve been doing tons of research, and feeling completely overwhelmed. This guy was able to assess my foot physiology, my training needs, and my comfort preferences in one shot and find me just the right shoe. Wow.

I’m $90 lighter, but I have a kickass pair of Sauconys that I can’t wait to break in tomorrow morning. And much less chance of injuring my knees than if I’d continued to run in my ten-year-old, beat-up Nikes. And I hereby resolve to replace my running shoes every few hundred miles from now on, just like the experts recommend. I’m sure spending just shy of $100 every six months or so will turn out to be cheaper than paying the medical deductibles on knee surgery or something similar. Running is awfully inexpensive in every other way, after all.

Yay for new shoes!

I’m a wreck!

Thursday, October 30th, 2003

Running in Charlottesville this weekend did me in, I think — all those hills.

Of course, one of my locker room buddies teased me with “Well, if you’ll ever leave the park, you’ll find that Nashville is a hilly place too.”

I have left the park, thank you very much — I ran up and down hilly Music Row, and it was tough on my knees. I don’t think I’m ready for intensive hillwork yet.

So anyway, yesterday morning, it felt like I was running through water. And this morning, I felt like a limp rag doll, even though I was taking it very easy on my first mile. Finally had to give up and go inside. Quite frustrating.

I’m hoping my muscles will be fully recovered by tomorrow morning and I can put in at least four miles, maybe five.

And running isn’t the only thing affected by my trip to C’ville — I can’t seem to focus on work since I’ve been back. Could’t have anything to do with signing back up on LiveJournal, could it?