Random Thoughts Thursday

Some random thoughts for the week.

-Boo! Maybe next year.

United Half Marathon

– I think that I’m over my Harlem running group.

-I went a little crazy purchasing winter running gear; hopefully, it will serve me well while training for my January half-marathon.

-I’m coming down with a cold, but so far there is no yucky green mucus . . . yet. Fingers crossed.

-Folks have to pay to volunteer?

I currently volunteer as a mentor for a high school program, and the program would likeFriday Meme to create an ambassador program for the mentors. Basically, ambassadors would schedule and set up meet and greets for the mentors. Could someone tell why the program wants you to give them at least $200/yr with a two-year commitment to be an ambassador? Let me get this straight. Y’all want folks to take on extra volunteering roles, BUT you want folks to pay to volunteer? Isn’t that the opposite of volunteering. Someone make it make sense.

-I guess that I’m going to have to incorporate some hill workouts while training for the Fred Lebow Half Marathon.

Fred Lebow Half

Fred Lebow Half Elevation

-Who’s excited about Thanksgiving and holiday movie season?

-Also, can you believe that Home Alone is 30 years old? Also, what the hell did Kevin’s dad do for a living to pay for all of those folks’ trip to Paris for Christmas?

-I think it’s time for another WordPress photo purge. I’m surprised that I still have not upgraded to a plan with more storage. Oh well. We all know that I’m a cheap bastard.

-The week after next, I’m going to try to start going to sleep at 11 pm.

-I’m still debating if I want to apply to this MS program in education. Starting next semester,  I can start taking up to seven credits per semester for free.

-I’m out

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A Marathon Deferred

Let me stop going back and forth with the thought of running this year’s NYC Marathon. It’s just not happening. You know what? I’m fine with it. 

I was somewhat energized because NYRR released the corral assignments.

TkZdX05HTa+IkMEWR1eYZw_thumb_36d6But after struggling through a four-mile run this morning, I realized that I do not want to struggle for 26.2 miles in and around NYC. It was a little tough coming to this decision because this would have been my sixth consecutive NYC Marathon. Also, I was planning on getting a marathon-related tattoo after completing this race.

In one of my Marathon “support” groups on Facebook, I mentioned that not running this thing is not the end of the world. Surprisingly, I got a lot of pushback from folks saying things like:

  • It’s not a thing; it’s one of the best races in the world
  • It’s all about the experience
  • You have to push and power through

First of all. I don’t have to do shit. 

Last year, I did that whole it’s all about the experience. I think that I even posted a GIF of Jade from America’s Next Top Model doing her “beautiful, wonderful, fabulous” thing during a challenge to represent how I felt coming off of the Queensboro Bridge.

jade

I did the whole “let’s run 13.1 miles and see where the rest of the marathon takes me” for NYC Marathon 2018. Last year (once again), I was coming off of an injuring and flying back from Madrid two days before the race. Do not get me wrong, the experience is unbeatable, but I wanted more out of this marathon. I guess this would have been my redemption marathon. After this morning’s run, I do not feel confident that I can run 13.1 miles in a couple of weeks to the point of even seeing where the marathon will take me. Why risk further injury by doing too much too soon? Also, I will be traveling for work in Hawai’i will return the day before marathon Sunday. By deferring the marathon, I will not have to constantly think about it during my Hawaiian work trip/vacation.

So there it is. NYC Marathon . . . OUT! Wait. Not, 100% OUT. The marathon route goes through my block at Mile 22 so I’ll be out there cheering folks on. I’ll try to keep my hating and FOMO to a minimum.

Looking past NYC Marathon, I do have Madrid’s marathon to prep for.

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The hubby checked tickets the other day, and they are fairly cheap right now – $320 RT (JFK <-> MAD). Actually, let me request some PTO in April so I can book the flight. He wants to see if I can take a full two weeks off. Those Europeans and their crazy concept of 2+ weeks of vacation.

For the months of October and November, I plan to do the following:

  • continue with my dumb PT exercises for my hip that probably will not work.
  • get a damn handle on my diet. It probably will not hurt to lose a few pounds.
  • do more strength training and continue with biking, stair climbing, and Zumba for my cardio.

With a combination of these things, I should be able to start training for Madrid’s Marathon (Apr. 26) in early January. Ouch, running in NYC during the winter months.  Something else for me to bitch about. Should I add anything else to that list?

Happy training.

Random Thoughts Thursday

-It is me or are folks in customer service getting increasingly ruder? This week I had to go off on three customer service representatives (McDonald’s, my local ignorant grocery store, and CVS). It’s like they give you an attitude because they have to do the jobs they are paid do. Like damn, girlfriend, I only asked for ketchup!!!

-I’ll be so glad when fall and winter arrive. At least in the cooler months, you can do something about your body temperature like wearing multiple layers. In the summer, you are screwed. Also, people tend not to flip out during the cool. On way to the gym, a man was hitting himself so aggressively that the bus driver made the passengers get off of the bus and he called the police/ambulance. This meant that we had to wait outside in 100-degree weather to wait for another bus. 

-How do folks feel about adding preferred pronouns to their email signatures at work? My work email signature is now TEN lines!!!! Hell, the space that the damn signature line occupies is longer than most of my emails.

-If I am stuck in meetings all day when the hell am I supposed to do my day to day work?

-The youngest marathon runner in the world is Budhia Singh. He has already finished 48 marathons before his fifth birthday.

-Boo, a pair of my favorite running shorts has multiple holes in the crotch area. 

-Boo (part II), I think that I’m coming down with a cold. For some reason (well, I probably know why), I always get sick when I begin a swimming regimen. 

-Oh, next week I will be married for six months. I guess we should celebrate. 

-I want a nice down, home Southern meal. I have not had one in a WHILE . . . I guess that I should take a trip to visit my family in Virginia. Actually, I cannot remember the last time I visited my folks. Maybe it was during Thanksgiving?

-Ugh, I need to get my life together. Because of my double booking, I just realized that I will miss the NYRR Team Championships because I will be out of town. There goes a 9+1 race entry and 20-something bucks down the drain. 

Getting My TCS NYC Marathon 2019 Train On.

Random start: Is it me or is the NYRR website and app becoming more and more user UNfriendly?

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Ok, looks like we are about 118 days away from NYC’s Marathon. I think this year, I

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The die has been cast Photo by Jonathan Petersson on Pexels.com

will try to do a 16-week training plan, which starts on July 15th. I debated purchasing a virtual training plan from NYRR, but I decided to use a free one like in previous years. I figure that I have not been the most committed with my training plans so paying for one seems like a waste. Plus, I’m cheap. I wish that I was in better marathon-training shape going into this thing, but there is nothing that I can do about it at this point. 

I decided to go with a 16-week marathon training plan from Runner’s World ( *** ). This training plan seems to have all the nuts and bolts that are needed to run a decent marathon. I want to get a couple of long runs out of the way before setting a time goal for the marathon. The plan involves five days of running; however, I may have to modify that schedule a bit. Aside from my failed attempt at doing a 30-day run streak, I rarely have run more than four times a week after my back injuries. For this plan, I may alternate between three and five runs per week . . . depending on how I’m feeling. Maybe during the three-run weeks, I’ll add an extra X-training day.

The plan has a little bit of everything. 

  • Hills and strides
  • Cross training
  • (Obviously) long runs
  • 400 and miles
  • Yasso 800s

To (kinda) keep me on track, I’ve already made a Google Calendar for all of the training runs. 

Hopefully, this calendar will keep me on track (no pun). But, then again, it did not really work that well last year. 

Plans for NYC Marathon 2020 9+1 Guaranteed Entry

So far, I have completed four of my nine races and my volunteer opportunity. On the docket: 

  • NYRR Retro (4M) – July 13
  • TCS Marathon Training Session (10M) – July 20
  • NYRR Team Championships (5M) – July 27
  • TCS Marathon (I probably should not use this as one of my 9+1 races, just in case) – November 3

Ok, I just registered for two more races (NYC Marathon Training, 12M, August 11 and Grete’s Great Gallop, 10K, October 5). If all goes well (aka if I’m not too hungover), I should be done with all of my qualifying races in October. 

See ya on the streets

Any upcoming half- or full-marathons on the radar for you?

 

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 (**)?

Hank Hill

  • 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.