Tag Archives: exercise

Why write? Why not?

I have to admit, I’m kind of disgusted with myself for ending a blog post with “Next up: running nutrition!  I’m doing a little research and crafting a meal game plan that I’ll share in another post.”  I apologize, not to any imaginary readers, so much as I apologize to myself.

I’m still running, running is awesome.  I sorta eat better, except for the pizza I wolfed down yesterday and today.  I’d be a(n anorexic) twig if I just stopped eating cheese, bread, and beer.  So tasty.

Two comments from people this past weekend fueled my desire to post here again.  I went on a 10 mile run with my half marathon buddy.  She admitted she builds her dream house as she runs, and I admitted I write blog posts as I run.  Blog posts that will never see the light of day, but that are bounced around in my head until they have very specific points to make.  My friend asked why I never recorded my brain blogs (<—- my phrase)?

I don’t know.  Half the time I’m so high off running endorphins that I forget everything I was dreaming up as I ran.  It’s a blur of lower minutes per mile averages, people (and butterfly!) watching, and parsing out that day’s weather.

Then, at a birthday BBQ on Saturday evening somehow I got to talking about how I’ve tried writing fiction several times over the past year, but my writing engine only turns over and never catches.  The people there were very encouraging about JUST FUCKING DO IT ALREADY.  But you know, without the f-bomb and without the caps.  My brain added those parts.

So far I’ve started a Western themed zombie story, a fantasy yarn about a woman with magical ocean powers, a mystical tale about death and people interred in mountains, and then there was the one about self-centered indulgences set amidst a post-apocalyptic world.

So, I have something about death (zombies, dead people buried in mountains, post-apocalyptic world).  My protagonists are mostly female (except for the Western zombie story, which was going to be multiple perspective).

I even downloaded a local wiki program to start building a fantasy world for the ocean powers/connected to water story.  I don’t even like the ocean that much.  It’s pretty to look at, but I prefer forests.

Then there are also maybe half a dozen documents with a few paragraphs or a few lines.  One quirky handful of paragraphs about a woman becoming involved in her uncle’s mysterious train station death is alllllllmost long enough to be on the story attempt list.

The only writing I’ve done in the past few years that I’ve actually liked is some short stream of consciousness diarrhea and poetry.  I sort of like my post-apocalyptic story, but that’s because I really needed to get that one out of my system when I wrote it.  And now I’m good.

Most of all, my urge to write again is being fueled by the intermittent melancholia of loneliness, and a realization that since I stopped writing lengthy research papers writing has slowly become more and more difficult.  I hate that thought even more than the thought of writing terrible stories with no middle or ending.  So I’ll keep turning the engine over and maybe something will catch.

Vroom.  Vroom.


Running Away and Running Towards

In summer 2010, encouraged by my coworker Teplyn, I did a 10K along the coast at the Rockland, Maine Lobsterfest.  When I signed up for the 10K I had no intention of running it, I was just along for the ride.  I planned to start out running and then end up walking, but once I started running I never stopped.  It was at this run that I realized how exhilarating it was to run in a race.

So when my grad school friend Cat asked if anyone would join her in a half marathon in October 2011, I said sure, why the heck not?  I ran a couple times a week for about 2 miles at a nearby park.  I didn’t have a set running schedule, didn’t do a long run, and didn’t really watch what I ate.  I just embraced the philosophy that the more often I ran, the better off I’d be.

That philosophy paid off pretty well.  Cat and I finished in a little under 3 hours (2 hrs 50 minutes or so if I remember right), and we felt pretty good about that, considering it was our very first half marathon ever.  (Cat was also extra kickass as she’d just given birth to her daughter in March that year.)

Cat continued to train and sign up for half marathons, but I dropped out of running in 2012 for financial reasons.  I’d just moved and started student loan repayments and I had to readjust my finances to find extra money to pay for things that weren’t bills.  Even though I was a half-marathon drop out for all of last year, Cat asked me about joining her in the OC half marathon this May.  This time around I could afford to sign up for a half again, so I jumped right on board.

Cat created a modified half training schedule, based on a recommend training program she did for the Tinkerbell half marathon.  Last week was week one of training and so far so good!  The general philosophy of the plan is to run three times a week – two times on weekdays for 30 minutes each day, and then a longer untimed distance run once on the weekend.  It’s a totally doable sounding plan so I’m giving it a shot.

Last week I missed the first 30 minute run, but I did the second one and did a 5.5 mile run on the weekend.  Now on to week #2!  I take a modern dance class on Saturday mornings, and I’m going to incorporate the stretching and warm up exercises from that class into my non-running weekdays.  So this week looks like:

Monday: stretch and dance warm ups

Tuesday: 30 minute run

Wednesday: stretch and dance warm ups

Thursday: 30 minute run

Friday: rest

Saturday: sadly no dance class this week as I’m going on an all day Mojave desert adventure

Sunday: 3-4 mile run (untimed)

I’m approaching this half marathon more seriously and aiming to get the finish time down to 2 hours 30 minutes or less.  Next up: running nutrition!  I’m doing a little research and crafting a meal game plan that I’ll share in another post.

So much for this being about my professional life.

1. Studying for Archival Certification exam.  Drank a beer and then dropped (too much) money on books (the beer softened the financial blow) for book order part one (it’s like being in college, except you don’t get student loans, instead you are simultaneous trying to pay the undergrad and grad loans back while becoming an employable professional, hah, oh life). I already have a handful of books from grad school and there are a few places around town where I can read the older ones, but nearby libraries don’t have the newer archival books – too expensive and specialized I guess?

2. Nothing makes me feel more feminist than insurance companies and the way they handle birth control in the U.S.  I’ve had four different health insurance companies over the past three years (both PPO and HMO) and none of these companies will let me pick up more than one month’s worth of birth control at a time, even if the doctor’s prescription specifies 3 pack pick up at a time.  Ridiculous.  What am I going to do, OD on hormones?  Give them out to teenage girls with disapproving parents?  All it does is cause me extra hassle and trips to the pharmacy for the same exact number of pills I would get whether or not I picked them up every month or every three months.

My friend who recently returned from studying and living in Germany for two years told her German doctor that she would be without health insurance for a few months once she got back to the U.S.  The doctor prescribed a year’s worth of birth control (like in the U.S.), and then my friend went to the pharmacy and picked up the year’s worth of birth control (not like in the U.S.).  Why can’t it be that simple here?

3. Game of Thrones is over for another season, sigh. But True Blood is coming back next week, hooray!

4. I’ve decided to write a fictional horror western story.  I have some ideas floating around, should be fun.

5. I’m going to Oklahoma and Texas in a few weeks for family time vacation.  I can’t wait for these next weeks to go by.

6. I feel like I’m treading water at work, treading in a sea of newspaper clippings.  I never thought I’d look forward to rehousing sheet music, but I sure am!

7. I’ve become addicted to a 2.5 mile loop at Griffith Park and the Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook stairs by Culver City

8. Visited Amir’s Garden in Griffith Park last weekend.  It was lovely!  Sadly I hiked up without a camera.

This is the only recent picture I’ve taken:


Mr. H made Aloo Gobi from scratch lastlast weekend. It was delicious! This weekend I made blackened chicken again and a chopped salad, but didn’t take pictures. Tonight I discovered how simple it is to jazz up couscous from the bulk bins instead of buying the boxed stuff with the powder flavorings. Winwinwin.