Sunday, July 15, 2012

Six for Saturday

I know, I've been falling behind on my blogging again. I REALLY need to update my side panel and pages too. *smacks hand* Bad blogger! Oh well ...

(1) One (1)

I SEVERELY procrastinated getting in my long run today. I just felt so sluggish (must have been all that hilarity from my cousin's wife's surprise birthday party last night) I didn't know if I could do it. Most of my aches and pains were probably mental too. I swear I told myself "I'll just get one more thing done and then I'll go run" half a dozen times. Finally, I decided I just had to go do it. By then, it was too warm and sunny to be running the roads around my house so I made the 10-minute drive over to the river and the old towpath trail.

I amazed myself. Once again. As soon as I started running and finding my rhythm, all the aches and pains disappeared, my lethargy melted away, and I realized I mentally needed this run just as much as physically. On long runs, I normally won't eat, drink, or take any walk breaks for the first 3 miles (sort of a mental training thing for 5ks). Today, I reached 4 miles before I even thought to take a sip of my Gatorade. By then, I was almost to my favorite halfway point ...
PS - I can't believe how low the river is right now! You can walk all the way across in a
couple places! Kind of hard to use the river as a post-run "cool down" when the water is super
shallow and almost 80*!
I finished off my Gatorade, ate a couple of my Power Bar Energy Blasts, and took off again. I slowed down twice on the way back, once to dump the water from my smaller bottle on my fuelbelt into my handheld bottle (I'm more likely to drink if it's in front of my face) and once because I somehow got a rock down in my shoe and I wanted it out before it snagged my sock or I stepped on it wrong and hurt myself. 9.58 miles (distance PR) in 1:50:58. That's an average pace of 11:34/mi.

(2) Two (2)

Is anyone else using Earndit? I've been using it for a couple weeks now and I'm loving it. From the website:

Sometimes we could all use a little extra motivation to exercise. While you’d think that the allures of better health and a leaner body would be enough to kick us into action, the reality of the matter is that they’re not. In fact, behavioral economists have a scientific explanation for this called "hyperbolic discounting".
In practice, hyperbolic discounting means that humans discount the value of a reward that occurs far into the future, preferring instead a more immediate reward even if its absolute value is less. For example, if I gave Harry the option to receive $10 today or $20 in a month, he’d probably choose $10 today even though it’s financially wiser for him to get $20 in a month. Hyperbolic discounting is the reason why better health and a leaner body down the road are not compelling enough to make us exercise today.
So we’ve created a system that gives you more immediate rewards for your exercise. Our hope is to foster a more active lifestyle in each of us, and in turn play a small role in improving the health of our users.
Go exercise. Get rewarded. You earnd it.


It really is easy to use. Mine syncs with my Garmin Connect. When it comes to the "rewards", there's some awesome stuff. You can earn stuff for yourself or you can donate your points to a couple causes Earndit champions. I decided as soon as I started on the site that I would donate to every cause before I scored anything for myself. So far, I've donated to Heifer International, Shining Hope, and Christmas in July for US Troops (which is near and dear to my heart).

(3) Three (3)

I've been spending a LOT of time with Roadie lately ... and I love it. I'm slowly cleaning and fixing things as I find issues and riding further and further each time. My butt still hurts if I spend too much time in the saddle, but it's getting better. There's no ache right after a ride, but you can bet I'm feeling it the next time I sit in that saddle again. I think I'm developing a "groove" in my butt. lol.

(4) Four (4)

I've been noticing a bunch of these showing up around our yard lately ...
Yep, that's a hole. Big enough I could shove a garden hose down it. And yes, that really is our backyard right now. We live on the edge of the Oak Openings Ridge (basically, a giant ridge of old sand dunes) and we've NEVER [in the 21 years we've lived here] been able to grow a decent lawn. And this summer's extreme heat has burned the heck out of any grass we DID have out in the open areas. Up around the house, you can tell exactly how far the water spreads out after exiting our downspouts and where is shaded most of the day. Those areas are the ONLY green in the yard, expect for the trees.

But back to the holes ... I finally figured out what they were when I saw some movement around one of the holes yesterday ...
Cicada killer wasps. I guess they prefer really loose sandy areas for their burrows ... and they hit the jackpot with our yard. I actually took THIS picture today, but the one I saw yesterday was in the process of dragging a cicada down the hole. It was pretty cool to watch. I was a little nervous about having wasps this big in our yard, but then I did a little research. Apparently, they aren't aggressive. I accidently put that to the test his morning with this guy in the picture. I was sitting under our pool deck fixing something and this guy flew over and landed on me several times. I brushed him away every time and he never got aggressive.

So, I'm still not completely comfortable with them, but now I'm more interested than scared. We'll see what dad has to say about them when he gets home. I'm pretty sure his reaction is going to be drowning the holes in wasp killer spray and then flooding them with the garden hose, but we'll see.

I'd take these guys any day over the ant assault that's happening in our kitchen right now. The really nasty thing is that the ONLY place they show up in the kitchen IS ON THE COUNTER!!! No matter how clean we keep it, they seem to flock to the area around the sink. Mom put out "bait traps", but that would require the ants taking the material back to their colony. Dad, brother, and I have the philosophy that they shouldn't make it that far. We're having ant-smashing contests and spraying (probably way too much) chemicals. And it's lead to some pretty spectacular arguments over who left dirty dishes in the sink ...

(5) Five (5)

With the parents gone this week and my brother spending most of his time packing up his apartment (he's moving into a house with friends for the next school year), I've been trying to balance "cleaning out the leftovers" and eating healthy. I've ended up with some interesting creations too ...
Ramen noodles with soy sauce, tuna, celery and grape tomatoes. It was pretty good, actually.

(6) Six (6)

I've talked before about taking aluminum cans to the recycle center to pay for my race registration fees. I made my latest run this morning. 43lbs of metal brought me $17.52. The price of aluminum went down again. Drat. Oh well. It's better than nothing and I'm lucky my half marathon will be small and cheap. :)

If we're friends on DailyMile, you know how often the neighborhood munchkins have talked me into riding bikes with them up to Oak Openings (they aren't allowed to go that far alone) for the sole purpose of picking up cans for me. I love that they want to help me and the environment at the same time. I always hope I'm setting a good example for them and this is one of those times I know I am. It sickens me, though, that I can completely clean the 2-3 mile stretch and we can ride by less than a week later and still pick up SO many cans, almost exclusively beer.

I could have waited a bit longer to take the cans in, but dad went on one of his rampages before they left on vacation. With the bags out of the garage, it's one less thing he can blame the ants on. It'll take me a while to build up enough of a stash again to out-grow the old garbage can and worry about bags sitting around. Though, hopefully I can find a semi-steady job soon and I won't have to be so concerned with collecting them for money.

Oh well. The parents will be home sometime tomorrow so I'll be spending every waking moment until then scrubbing and cleaning and organizing. Mom is having surgery on both her feet this week so we want to have the whole house cleaned and stocked before then. I think the plan is to take a MASSIVE shopping trip and cooking marathon the day before. I can cook for myself, and dad can cook for himself and mom (usually), but we're all a bit particular about our food (different medical issues, I refuse to eat beef and starch every night, etc.) that it's just not a good idea to have dad in charge of food for everyone. Or me, for that matter. lol

PS - At what age is counting down to your birthday "immature"?

1 comment:

  1. I still countdown. I even started working on my birthday want list to give my parents. My birthday is still over 3 months away...