Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Running Around

I have three journals.  One paper, one on LiveJournal, and this here Blogger.  It gets a little tough to keep all three in active rotation, okay?

I realize I'm being defensive for nothing, for I've also had a Facebook page for over five years, so it's not like I've been totally off the grid in any way.

What have I been up to since April?  Well, I'm still "shooting the cat", as I like to refer to Amelia's insulin doses.  The good news is that in my inexpert opinion, she's regulated on these 3ccs of Lantus because she no longer drinks like a frat boy and pees like a race horse.  Her food generally gets her through the day with a few bites to spare the next morning, and overall she seems content.  I will be taking a second mini-vacation this summer for a few days when I go up to Anaheim, so I will use that as an opportunity to board her at the vet and ask them to run tests to see how well she's really doing.  Perhaps she can even go off of the insulin soon--who knows!

This spring into early summer I was mostly occupied with the usual--work and dancing, but also getting to know my city again with the likes of the guy I like to call "Loophole".  He came over from Germany to intern with my company for five months, and we became fast friends who liked to get out and about in Southern California in one of our two Camrys.  A byproduct of our friendship came a renewed interest in something I attempted 3 years ago: running.  Ralph--that's his real name--likes to run and can do 6 miles at a go, leaving me in the frustrated dust.  We had started working out together once a week in the company gym this spring and made an unofficial pact:  he would start working in more strength training and I would try to run.

As far as I know, he's not back in Germany doing Romanian dead-lifts these days (which would be funny because, actually, he was born in Romania), so I think I've held up my end of the bargain more because today I finished my second almost-three-mile-run outdoors!  Haha.  I started slowly in April back in the old gym with him.  He'd get a head start on the treadmill while I worked the free weights and then eventually drag myself over to the second machine to run.  I gradually worked myself through running a mile straight before walking out the rest of my pre-set time, which eventually became two miles of straight running, and only once to date has been three.  The 3-miler happened during a short trip to Vegas about a month ago.  I was using the Mirage gym and I was able to distract myself to the point of running about 2.83 before peeking under the towel, realizing how far I had gone, and finishing out a 5k's worth.

I had not been able to repeat that performance back in my regular gym since, which pissed me off so badly that Monday I decided to do what I had intended to get into all along: the outdoor run.  After work I picked a route, put in the earbuds, and took off.  It was a bit overcast and it's been unseasonably chilly for July in San Diego, but I found myself actually enjoying the ramble down the business park back roads.  I enjoyed it until I got to the slow grade back uphill, which by that point felt like I had been skewered with that thing you use to hold down a big, juicy steak while you slice it.  Getting to the top, though, was such an endorphin release.  All in all it was about 2.6 miles that passed much more easily than any stint on a treadmill.  I was on to something.

Today I went on a suicide run.  I call it suicide because you get lured into a false sense of security early on by going down a long hill and then about a mile into it, you climb up into an unforgiving, long, slow, windy ascent before making it back up to the starting point.  It's a pretty tough road for anyone, especially the likes of me who has been on a flat treadmill for the last 3+ months.  I just have to suck it up, though, because San Diego is full of hills.  Not quite San Francisco-grade, but enough to make you feel the burn!

I have to stand back and marvel at it all because for most of my life I've despised running and was secretly envious of anyone who didn't.  However, I was encouraged to give it a go and I really like having this as a way to challenge and set goals for myself.   I know people who have gotten themselves into great shape by running and I hope to join their ranks.

Whenever I would climb off the treadmill heaving and red-faced, Ralph would say to me, "Do you feel good?"

Yes. Yes I do.