Recycle Recycle Recycle

As a runner, I have gone through a whole bunch of running shoes.  And I’ve often wondered about how to recycle them.  I know that there are some places that, for lack of a better word, upcycle them.  But I’ve always been a little wary of doing this, if only because I really wear these shoes out.  I have guilt/concerns about the idea that I would be “upcycling” something that was not in great shape.  (I also have guilt/concerns about how much garbage I produce, but that is a conversation for another time.) This brings me to what spurred this post.  Nike recycles shoes.  This I knew because I had seen this list.  BUT. There are drop off locations!!!!   How have I not known about this??!!!    Is it too 2009 to *Facepalm* myself?


Seven miles

This week was a seven miler. It is the longest I’ve run in a very, very, very long time. And I learned a few things on the way. 1. I need new shoes. Badly. Should have taken the hint when my knees started hurting before mile three. 2. You can really cover a lot of space in my town when going seven miles. I think I looped a whole section without even trying. What’s going to happen when I really have to go some distance? 3. Pandora has a sense of humor. Mile five was sponsored by Queen. That’s right, We Are the Champions, baby! Below are some images I took along the way.

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Of Running and Trees

I started thinking about where to run last night. Today is my long day, and I really think that I have maxed out how far my neighborhood can take me. I’m all for doubling back and looping around, but at seven miles I think I would just be running loop after loop.

Instead, I think that I’m going to see if J.D. will drop me off at one end of the Lakeshore Green-way and then I can run down to Jemison, loop around up to Montevallo and meet them at the park. Of course, first J.D. is gonna have to wake up.

In the meantime, we had an arborist come by the house yesterday to look at all the trees. After the Tornadoes last spring, there was no doubt that things needed to be better managed. But I waited to see, first, if the house would sale. Evil of me? I hope not. You have to understand that to have a person help you care for you trees long-term, not just some random guy come along and top them out, costs. Depending on how many trees you have and their health, it can cost between $1800-$4000 every 4 years. This is just one of the many things about home-ownership that gets glossed over. And it wasn’t something I wanted to spend the cash on if I needed the cash to then turn around and close on a new house. Now that we are staying, the hulking oaks and pecans in the back yard need some attention. I plan on getting some great pictures.

Now, for coffee cup two and to find the camelpack for the run today.

Mad Crazy Times

Sorry about missing yesterday. I should have warned you that the beginning of the semester in this house is nutty. The beginning of the semester, in a year where JD has a new job and I am wrestling with an institutional review board for the first time, is mad crazy.

Time manag-what? That’s step two for people who have already admitted they have a problem. I’m still on step one.

In the meantime I have to thank Bean. The only reason I made it to run today was because she wanted so desperately to go to play at the gym. And, you know, since I was there anyway, might as well change, get on a treadmill, run.

Today’s 5K

Today’s race turned out brilliantly. Bean was great. The race was well organized. It was incredibly hot and I was pushing 40lbs in front of me, but I still managed 13.5 minute miles. Fantastic. Check out the pictures below.

After losing my car keys, I finally make it to get my number.

All the folks in front of me.

All the folks behind me.

Bean waits patiently for the race to begin.

Bean was so good she got her face painted.

Are U able? We’ll see.

I. Am. So. Tired.

I’m not sleepy, mind you. Tired. Super-duper-mega-tired. Or to be more precise, my legs are. So I have a serious concern about tomorrow’s race. A concern that my legs, when presented with the prospect of running the Are U able 5K, will respond with “We are bleeping sorry but bleep, bleep the bleep were you bleeping bleep thinking after the bleeping bleep week you’ve bleeping bleep had? Next bleeping time, be bleeping nicer to us. Bleep.”

On the outside, of course, all you will see is me, walking. But rest assured, it’s going to be rated R in my internal dialog. You know, for strong language and adult themes.

In other news, the Zoo closes at 4:45. Chalking this up to “lessons learned the hard way.” Man that list is getting long.

I Think I Can

On Saturday I will run my first 5K in almost 3 years. I’m excited and nervous. And because of a scheduling snafu I will not be alone. Bean will be with me, in the running stroller. I’ve promised that if she is good, she can run the last bit with me. Her first race. She is very excited about this.

It’s a small race so I fully expect to be near the end and therefore out of the way. That being said I did call and double check the stroller situation. Also, a tiny part of me doesnt want to
be the absolutely last person to cross the line.

So Saturday is a race, then lunch with Dad, then a Ben Folds show. Wow. Looks almost like I’m an adult. 😉

Faster Than a Speeding Bullet!

Who was that girl who just ran a 11 minute mile?!  That’d be me!  Today I had to run my “long run.”  You know, the one that got put off on Sunday and totally sandbagged on Monday.  Well part of the training includes an occasional “magic mile” portion to test my pacing ability.  I’ve never been an especially speedy runner.  Barely sub-10 minute miles is really all I’ve ever accomplished consistently.  But I’m thrilled that this early in the effort I was able to hit an 11 minute mile.  It bodes well my friend.  It bodes well.

Also, when I went to the gym to change for the run, I got a good look at my backside in my pants.  Why didn’t someone tell me I was bagging so badly?!  (I’m lookin’ at you.   You know who you are.)  So I am now, officially, wearing my size 16s.  At least my old size 16s.  My newer ones still fit strangely.  Same pant, same size, different fit.  Seriously Gap?!  (pause to give the Gap the stink-eye.)

(Exit stage left doing happy dance in size 16s.)



Today is my long run day, but I did not run.  I am sure, during the training period that there will be many days where something is scheduled and does not happen.  Some of the time I will be able to anticipate it.  Some of the time I won’t.  It has taken a long time for me to be OK with this.

In the beginning I was on target, whatever the sacrifice.  Of course, at that point I lived alone. I wasn’t dating anyone seriously. I had no one to answer to but my thesis advisor and my cat, who frankly wanted me out of bed as early as possible so she could squeeze in some good nap time.  But of course, things still came up.  Ahem, an appendix rupture for example.

These days, I must admit, I find trainers who tell you to schedule the work out time and make it sacrosanct frustrating at best, implacable at worst.  It’s not that I disagree about setting the workout time as a priority, but I disagree with the idea that you must be unyielding. Because let’s face it, the great current that we sometimes swim against is immutable.   If you choose to swim against it too long you end up too exhausted to enjoy anything.  And, bonus, if you are someone who tends toward the obsessive end of the scale, you get to experience that failure on a altogether different level.

I’m not saying that everything should just flow along.  But, when facing a day full of errands, missed naps, new school year prep, and sick animals, it’s OK to let that long run wait.  Especially if it is something you want to enjoy, not just check off your list.

How to Keep a Geek on a Treadmill

I suppose it is good to know that somethings never change. For instance, running on a treadmill is just as dreadfully boring as I remember. The only thing I like about the treadmill is being able to keep a close eye on my pace. That and the bathrooms are close by. What?! I’m no good at squatting and, you know, cities frown on that kind of thing.

There are all kinds of tricks for staying occupied on the treadmill. I still remember one of my longer runs when I was training for my first (and only) marathon. I had to run on a treadmill and as luck would have it there was a show on ESPN about the old stadium at Foxboro for the New England Patriots. No I’m not being sarcastic. It was interesting. All kinds of things went wrong, plumbing issues, vender issues. It was detailed enough to distract me but not so detailed that I had to really pay attention. 7 miles on a treadmill and I learned that before the opening game they were afraid the toilets would explode if too many folks flushed at the same moment. Good times.