Random Thoughts Thursday

26.2 reasons why I’m relieved that I’m not running NYC Marathon. Hopefully, I will not be a hater for a few of these reasons. 

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TBT Marathon Monday 2018

Ha. I guess it was a good thing that I put “maybe” on my Instagram post. 

1. I am not running 26.2 miles.

2. I can sleep in on Marathon Sunday.

3. I’ll be able to root and cheer for folks this year because Mile 22 goes right through my neighborhood. Oh, I get to buy glitter for my signs.

4. I probably can schedule my toe surgery and have time to recover before training for Madrid’s marathon.

5. No Marathon Monday soreness.

6. No painful post-marathon shower. It’s over for me once the soap and water hit the areas of chaffing. 

7. I can have a beer while watching the runners. Well . . . technically, I usually have a few shots of beer while running the marathon.

8. Since I can defer my registration, I do not have to worry about completing my 9+1 for guaranteed entry into next year’s marathon. This is important because the marathon was supposed to be one of my 9+1 races and I am NOT doing that NYE midnight run again. I know this is bad, but I did (for a millisecond) consider selling my marathon bib. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I know that you are not supposed to do this. 

9. Once the hip fully heals (hopefully in a few weeks), my running motivation will be restored. Usually, after the NYC Marathon, I do not want to think about running until mid to late January. Maybe this will be the year (technically 2020) that I will run NYRR’s Fred Lebow Half Marathon, which will be held on Jan. 19, 2020.

Man, coming up with 26.2 reasons is tough. 

10. No worrying about having to use a porta-potty.

11. No post-marathon blues. I’m already dealing with the ‘I’m injured and cannot run’ blues.

12. I will not have to deal with the Marathon expo. I’m not really a large crowd, massive lines kind of guy. But, I do like taking this picture.

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TBT: NYC Marathon Expo 2018

13. My friends and coworkers will be glad that I’m not going to be constantly talking about the marathon. However, it is a great way to make a conversation about yourself . . . unless you are in a group of marathon runners. 

14.  I will not have to deal with walking another half of a mile (at least) after the marathon to get my bag. Yeah, I know that it would have been easier to get the poncho. But, I like doing the bag check because I take a shower at my gym after the marathon and change into my “hanging out, let’s get some gin” clothes. Also, I need to have my post-marathon smoke.

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15. No running across the 59th Street Bridge, which always has been a thorn in my side.

16. No stressing out about flying from Hawai’i to NYC the day before the marathon.

17. If I wake up early enough, I can see the top, elite marathon runners in action.

18. No falling short of time goals. I guess not running the marathon is technically falling short of a time goal.

19. Not running this year (hopefully) will make me want it more in 2020.

20. I guess that I do not have to buy new tennis shoes.

21. I probably will have a nice sleep the night before the marathon. Last year, I think that I only got only 3 hours of sleep the night before NYC Marathon.

22. No eye-rolling on the Staten Island Ferry bus to Staten Island. I cannot stand people who are super chipper first thing in the morning.

23. No bloody nips.

24. No constantly dropping F-bombs after mile 21. Once the marathon hits Manhattan for the second time (Mile ~20), I’m pretty much over the entire thing. 

25. I’m going to my favorite Seafood restaurant on Marathon Monday.

26. No monitoring what I eat 48-72 hours before the marathon. Actually, did I ever do that?

0.2. Who wants a heavy medal anyway? 😉

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Random Thought Thursday – Marathon Training

Now that I have finished five weeks of training for TCS NYC Marathon, I can share some insights about my (lack of) progress.

Training in General:

  • Training has been going so so. I have been sticking to my long runs (with the exception of this weekend), but I could be a little more focused on my weekday, shorter runs . . . especially if want to get faster.
  • I am not a morning runner, but I’m definitely not a post-work runner either.
  • Do foam rolling and ice baths actually work? I’ve done ice baths after my last three long runs and have not really observed any changes/increases in recovery.
  • I have really enjoyed incorporating swim days into my training seasons. Perhaps, I will try to find a cheap, indoor pool so I can continue to swim during the fall and winter. During the summer, NYC has an open lap swim program, but all of the pools (or the ones closest to me) are outdoors so this will not be a suitable option for winter in NYC.
  • I have been kind of indifferent to my training runs. Since I have this Hawai’i to New York flight two days before the marathon, I’ve resigned on the idea that I’ll get any type of PB for this marathon. Looks like this will be another “run how you feel” marathon.
  • I have not been complaining about the heat that much.
  • Honestly, I do not miss logging runs with a wrist GPS tracker.
  • I have not kept up my commitment to running with my running groups. One group meets after work, but I feel like I’m too slow for the other group that meets in the morning. Actually, I’m going to try . . . again to run with these groups.
  • Lordy, I had to mute a couple of Facebook NYC Marathon groups that I follow. I swear people need to learn how to read and search for information before asking simple questions. This was apparent when NYRR opened the transportation and baggage options for the marathon. Folks were freaking out left and right. Sh*t like:

How do I get from my hotel to the ferry or bus?

I’m pretty sure that you can use Google Maps or even MapQuest. 😉

  • Oh, while I’m being a hater. An administrator of one of the Facebook NYC Marathon groups is planning a gift exchange the day before the marathon, which is a cool idea. HOWEVER, the person is like if you sign up for the gift exchange and do not come to the exchange, there will be SEVERE consequences.

Like what the hell is he gonna do? Bash my knees if I don’t bring the gift? download.jpeg

  Call my father and tell on me? Put me in marathon jail?

Probably one of the weirdest songs on my long run playlist.

  • What do with all of those race medals? Convert them into refrigerator magnets. That was my arts and crafts plan during one of my days off, but I ended up running errands and drinking wine all damn day.
  • I’m really on the fence of switching from Crunch Fitness to New York Sports Club (NYSC).  I have been a member of Crunch Fitness since 2008/09 and have been fortunate enough to live and work close to few locations. However, now, the nearest Crunch gym is a bit out of the way (40 or so blocks) from work AND my apt. Yes, I know, first world problems. Why should I drag my ass 40+ blocks, if there are TWO NYSCs within walking distance to my apt and job? I will admit that on Monday, this kind of pissed me off.

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I dragged my ass 40 blocks and THREE avenues to this adversity?!!’

Also, NYSC is slightly cheaper, and word on the street is that NYSC has special deals if you are switching gyms. I just gotta double-check how many NYSCs are available with the passport membership.

If you have any fall races on the calendar, how is your training going?

Friends. How many of us have them?

Actually, that’s not my real question, per se.

After running with my neighborhood’s running group yesterday, I was wondering (or rather “rundering”) at what age does it become difficult to make new friends? As kids, all it really took to make a new friend was having a cool toy or the same backpack. I remember bonding with a few of my childhood friends over our Thundercats bookbags.

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One of the main reasons that I joined this running group was to meet more people in my “newish” neighborhood in a non-bar setting. Ok, so yesterday, was my second run with the group. I was not expecting to find my BFF, but it was so difficult to become engaged with some of the folks. For the last two fun runs, I ran with the 10min/mi group because I figured that would be an easy enough pace for me to jog and talk without gasping for air. Since Mondays are the group’s fun runs, I thought people would not be too hung up on keeping their pace. Since no one really spoke to me during the run, I introduced myself, but the conversation never really got past the general “Hi, my name is ___. How long have you been living in Harlem?” I felt like I was forcing myself on some of the other runners just by asking a couple of simple damn questions.

Maybe in my 20s and early 30s, it was easier for me to just randomly start talking to people and make an effort to force the interaction. As an only child, if you wanted to make friends, usually you had to just put yourself out there. Not, that I’m complaining about being an only child. Actually, I LOVED being an only child because everything was mine and I did not have to share . . . for the most part ;).” I realize that coming into a new running group (or any other social group) is tough because everyone already knows each other. During the run, two women were chatting about their 9+1 status for NYC Marathon 2020. I thought, “Ok, I can chat with them because that’s something we have in common.” WRONG. They pretty much did not seem interested in chatting with me about anything marathon related. One of the women will really have to work on her running form if  . . . (let me stop being a sassy hater).

During the run, I was told myself that maybe people are not chatting because they are pushing themselves to keep up with the 10min/mi pace after climbing a big hill.

7sOOr0cxSGGf4D7kFo29Vg_thumb_2fb5Not a big deal, I’ll stay after the run and chat with people at the burger joint. People tend to chat and be more friendly when stuffing their faces with food and beer, right?

At the burger joint, it was pretty much the same thing during the run. Folks cliqued up and really did not seem interested in accepting new applications for their cliques. As some may know, I am a member of a beer lovers group. Every time I see someone new to the group or standing alone, I usually invite him/her into the conversation that I’m having with other members since I know what it’s like being on the outside looking in. Now that I’m in my late 30’s, I have noticed that I do not put as much effort in starting these new conversations to meet people in preformed cliques (maybe that’s another one of my problems). I mean, if I find myself the one constantly asking all the questions and the one driving the interaction, then I’m pretty much done. Actually, I ended up talking to a random person, who was not a part of the running group, about living in the neighborhood at the burger joint. After finishing my beer (believe it or not, I only had one beer), I was over it and pretty much left without saying bye to anyone (they probably didn’t notice anyway). 

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A couple of my good friends that I’ve had since 2002 have told me that I come off meaner than I really am. Probably because I’m just one of those people who never smiles unless I’m laughing. Also, for the most part, I maintain a poker face so you never know what I’m thinking.

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Hell, this is me not smiling in one of my bday pictures as a kid. Word on the street is that I would only wear the cowboy hat that my great uncle bought for me. Yeah, birthday hats are lame anyway. 😉UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_2ef1

Eh, oh well. This was a random post. I figure that I will go to a few more of these fun runs, and if nothing changes, then I’ll just run alone. 

I’m too old for this shit, anyway. 

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Now, that I’ve just had a birthday last week. I have a feeling that “I’m getting too old for this shit.” will be my motto for most of the year. I do not know how many times I said on Sunday during NYCs Pride Parade, but it was A LOT. 

Perhaps, this Mel Magazine article “Men on the age at which they started to no longer give a shit.” will provide some insight ( *** ).

How do you feel about engaging with or joining new social groups/clubs? 

At what age do/did you stop actively trying to make new friends?

Random Thoughts Thursday

  • I need a nap.
  • Is it time to start complaining about the weather?
  • I really need to relearn Spanish. I used to speak it decently a few years ago. By speaking it, I mean being able to explain the Electoral College to some random Chileans.
  • I’m still annoyed that I had to break my streak run; I guess that could restart today.
  • Although I broke the streak, it was nice exploring different areas in my newish neighborhood.
  • I think NYC Marathon training season is right around the corner because I keep receiving emails about purchasing training plans.
  • This summer, I want to do a substantial run (at 8 miles) in a “random” part of each NYC borough. Where you at, Staten Island?!!!
  • Can we all agree that NYCers (real estate folks in particular) need to stop renaming neighborhoods?
Image courtesy of the The Gothimist

Image courtesy of The Gothimist

Stuyshwick is supposed to be a combination of Bed Stuy (where I used to live in Brooklyn) and Bushwick. I chuckled a little bit at the image used for this story because it was taken near there corner where 14+ people OD’ed on K2. Basically, these folks make up new names of already existing neighborhoods so incoming folks think they are moving to a cool, up and coming place, so the process of gentrification can begin.

  • Ugh. This time two years ago, I was drinking wine and eating tapas in Spain.
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  • Arranging this toe surgery has been quite annoying. Don’t most procedures requiresomething ain't right some type of pre-authorization from a health provider? The representative from the podiatrist office told me that the office does not make pre-authorization requests. Something does not sound right. When I had my back procedure and some dental work done, the respective offices had to get pre-authorization from my health insurance provider. Also, they were able to give me an estimated out of pocket cost for the procedures. The $300 deposit is the only cost that the podiatrist office was able to give me.
  • Why would Eventbrite send me this DURING my event? Shouldn’t the site have sent me this BEFORE the event?!!!
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Random Thoughts Thursday

  • I’m kind of enjoying this 30-day streak run. Yes, I’m only on Day 7, so I do have a ways to go. This streak has taken me back to the days when I used to run 3 or 7 miles to work; back when running did not feel like a chore. Well . . . I’m way slower than I was in 2011, but something is better than nothing. 
  • Why is everyone hating on my old ass iPhone SE? Last week on four separate occasions, I was asked when am I getting a new phone. Ummmm. . . I’ll get a new phone when this one breaks or runs out of memory, whichever comes first. Then again, I’m always open to free iPhone (128 GB) donations

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  • Plus, I’m waiting for the release of the iPhone 20 Plus.  

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  • After listening to the Marathon Training Academy, I really want to run London’s XTrhNKLyQRumO8A8JNIRvw_thumb_2c5cMarathon. Then again, there was a large amount of heckling aimed at the 6+ hour runners ( *** ) – many of whom were running/walking for charities. Since my last trip to London with an impromptu trip to Paris was back in 2006, I’m long overdue for another one. Also, it would be nice to see some of my Ghanian family members again in person rather than on social media and our family’s What’s App chat. I started to write a funny family story about London, but it got too long so I made a separate post about it (***).
  • Aside from the few bouts of rain, this week has been a lovely (aka not hot as hell) for running. 
  • I really need a beach day . . . or five. 
    • According to my time-off record, I have 23 vacation days that I’ll lose if I do not use them by June 30th. 
  • I’m officially out of King of the Hill episodes. When’s that reboot gonna happen (**)?

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  • I am so behind on most aspects of my job. Could I just have a day when I catch up on all of my emails? Maybe, I should be emailing instead of blogging. 
  • Ugh, the other day I spend a couple of hours figuring out Canva, a publishing program, only to find out that it does not support super/subscripts!!!! I was this close || from throwing my laptop against a fuckin’ wall.
  • Ok, so I’m getting more into this Twitter game. Yes, I know that I’m about a decade behind. On some of the hashtags that I follow, it seems like today’s graduate students whine about any and everything. Maybe that’s the point. Perhaps, we whined about everything but we did not have the outlets to broadcast our complaints on an hourly basis. Not to be mean, but if getting a Ph.D. was not difficult, then EVERYONE would do it. 
    • However, I will say that many of the complaints (limited access to mental health care; paying upfront for professional conferences; difficulty transiting into non-academic careers, general brokenness, etc.) are very legitimate. 

 

Random Thoughts Thursday

  • Surprisingly, I am enjoying this streak run thing. But I just have to make sure that I stretch on a daily basis. 
  • It’s summer kickoff, which means I gotta plan a couple of beach days. Just in case you did not know, I HATE visiting the beach on the weekends . . . way too many folks. I like to take a personal day for my “mental-health” beach days and visit during the work week. I like to relax at the beach and hearing loud-ass reggaeton for 4-5hrs do NOT relax me. 
  • I only like loud-ass reggaeton in Zumba class. 
  • Speaking of Zumba, cheers to me getting the last spot in Saturday’s Zumba class. 
  • A post-run picture from my first run in 80F weather. I’m no not ready for summer running. 
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      Maybe I can get some windshield wipers for my eyeglasses.

 

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I wonder if I can store a pack of smokes in my socks too.?

  • Last week, I was so jealous of all of the graduates, especially the Ph.D’s. Maybe, I’ll become a dean of something so I can wear my “wizard’s” outfit every year.
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      My hooding ceremony.

  • I kind of nervous about how long I’ll be out of running commission after my toe/foot surgery.
  • Lookie here, “Funkytown” by Lipps Inc. was the number one song on the day of my birth – June 25, 1980.
  • Ugh, I’ve been using Canva (a graphic design program) to make program booklets. Ummm why the hell is there no option to use super/subscripts? So annoyed.

Random Thursday – EPIC Edition

Here are some random thoughts, rants, and raves.

[1] I am (re)loving “King of the Hill”. I never was a HUGE fan of the show back in the day; it was a show that came on before “The Simpsons”. Toward the end of my graduate tenure (2009), I used to watch it quite regularly. When writing my dissertation, I often arrived home around 1-2 am, and King of the Hill was the only thing on TV.

This is from the episode when the father, mother, AND the son were addicted to cigarettes.

[2] Speaking of love. I’ve been listening to Gloria Trevi’s “Abranse Perras” nonstop.

[3] Why can’t people ever have their money ready when it is is time to pay. C’mon, you have been in this line for 10 minutes!!!

[4] NYRR is really going above and beyond to make sure folks do not transfer their race bibs. NYRR claims it’s for our safety. Here’s my thing. Often you have to register for races MONTHS in advance, especially for big races like the NYC Marathon or the Brooklyn Half-Marathon, but injuries happen. Yes, NYRR will allow you to defer your entry to the next year, but you have to pay again. I will be honest and say that I have sold a  race bib or two in the past when I was injured. That said, I was never greedy because I sold the bib for the same price of registration. One of my buyers was so shocked that I was not trying to gouge him that he bought me a couple of rounds of cocktails – I met him at a bar (shocker) to exchange the bib for money. I have seen some Craiglist ads selling NYC Marathon bibs for $500.  However, I do think that NYRR now offers race insurance. What is it to NYRR if you sell your bib? I mean, the organization still gets their money whether you run the race or not.

[4a] Actually, the issue may be less about money and more about people trying to sell their bibs to good runners so they can qualify for big races like the Boston Marathon. This is a practice I really don’t understand. If you are a 4-, 5-hour marathon runner why in the hell would you want to run in a marathon where you have to qualify based on time?

[5] One of my library books is REALLY overdue.

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[6] I need to reevaluate my 1-, 5-, 10-year career plan. It’s been a little tough trying to figure out how to “get in where fit in.” As some may remember, I made a career change (biomedical scientist to higher education administrator) two years ago.

[7] Next month is my birthday month. One more year toward the big four O.

[8] I do not know how I feel with the paper straw craze. The paper straws make my gin taste weird. 😉

[9] With whom do I have to sleep in order to get a “Review of the Day” Yelp shoutout?

[10] Why is it so much harder to do intermittent fasting this year than last year?

[11] Have folks moved on from WordPress to other blogging platforms?

[12] Ugh, I have a million things to do.

[13] I need a vacation, like a 7-month type of vacation.

[14] Sometimes, I miss conducting biomedical research.

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In my former lab, a coworker and I would draw funny pictures and leave funny messages for each other when we had to share stuff. She drew a picture of me on my flask of stem cells.

[15] I realized that I have not had a taco in MONTHS.

[16] What’s with NYC weather? It feels like November. Let me stop because I’ll be bitching about how hot it is in a few weeks.

[17] Worst bar in the world. It’s like the folks do not know if they want the place to be a bar, a lounge, a restaurant, a titty bar, or a hot damn mess. Artspace, my black ass.

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[18] The racist/homophobic “church” in my neighborhood is back at it again. For the last few weeks, the church was posting such positive messages about God and love. Now, this.

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Oh, FYI, the “hit job” was an article that suggested the pastor was abusing children.

[19] It seems as if Jlo’s daughter received Marc Anthony “good singing” genes. Perhaps, the daughter can teach Jlo how to sing (***).

[20] Why must people blast their crappy music in public? Don’t nobody want to hear that shit.

[21] People who act as if public transportation is their personal transportation are annoying.

[22] I cannot stand people who FaceTime (loudly) on a bus. Don’t nobody want to hear your ignorant conversations. Well … sometimes I do. 😉

[23] I think that I’m gonna order a pizza for dinner tomorrow.

[24] I do not have any vacation getaways planned for this summer, and that saddens me. 😦

[25] The abortion bill in Alabama and its potential ramifications scare me, and I don’t even have a uterus.

[26] The campus looks so nice with all of the folks getting ready for graduation.

[27] Is there a way I can do a cleanse that allows me to drink booze? 😉

[28] These guys on the bus that are going in on Nene Leakes have me cracking up in laughter.

[29] I hope these are enough cigarettes to get me through the workday. Probably not.

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[30] Oh, I need to make an optometrist appointment so I can get some new contact lenses.

That’s it for randomness.