29 May 2007

Things I learned, or was reminded of again, today

  1. Running into the wind sucks.

  2. Chafing sucks more.

  3. I do have the power to motivate myself.

  4. I need to learn to harness this power sooner.

  5. Accelerade and Endurox are great.

  6. Shorts ride up my thighs, which is bad since I'm not ready to bare my (fat, flabby, cellulite, hairy) legs fully to the world with my short short running shorts.

  7. Who wears short shorts? We wear short shorts. If you dare wear short shorts, Nair for short shorts. (Watch the video here! Select 'watch our TV commerical' and then 'watch video'.)

  8. I, apparently, have a wealth of stupid commerical jingles available at the drop of a hat.

  9. But I don't wear short shorts.

  10. Getting into the shorts is a lot harder than it is to run in them.

  11. Likewise, stepping into the running shoes is a lot harder than stepping in them. (get it?)

  12. I don't like running with a ponytail. (hot)

  13. I do like running with a bun. Or at least a fake bun. (cool)

  14. Hot showers are a good thing.

  15. I am still a superhero.

Just for Jean

This blog is dedicated to Karen's Mom – heretofore referred to as KM. I ran today! Thanks for commenting!

Yes, I finally dragged my butt out to the bike trails today and I pushed myself more than I wanted which was good. I ran my 5K route again to see if I could run it without my pacer and still make the same time. I ended up finishing in 33:59 which was slower than Thursday but included a full 1 minute stop when I stopped, walked a bit , then turned around after 1.25 (as I was running into the wind) and then stopped and turned around again saying, “Moe, you have to keep going.” Seriously, I said that, out-loud, and firmly. It helped, though running into SD “here comes the storm” wind sucks. The 1.55 turn-around felt great (heading back to the start/finish line), till I turned again* and was back into the wind and going up hills. I hate wind. I hate hills too.

So anyway, I did make it, walked only one other time for all of 10 seconds then made me go again, and I had a nice kick at the end which helped my time I think.

The biggest issue today was chaffing. I have heard a lot about this as I prep for TC. Chaffing sucks. Use Vaseline (which I'm not sure I understand that concept, but whatever). But today was my first chaffing moment. My favorite shorts rubbed nicely along my fat belly (filled up with lots of goodies from the weekend) and left a beautiful red mark right where my jeans or shorts line would be. Great! That's wonderful, just what I need. Good thing my jeans don't fit in the waist (only the thighs) so they won't rub too badly there.

And after all that I'm thinking I should try to run again this afternoon. We'll see on that one. I have been thinking I need to do two-a-days seeing as I only have 4 months to go. (Technically, 130 days) But I really need to start pushing myself more and more. When I start thinking about it, I start to worry. So I'm going to try to not think about it. But I have to. Oh the dilemma.

*Yes, lots of turn around's. I started heading north, then went slightly west, then south, then turned around to head north again, then east, then south again. Lots of fun turns, but my route is beautiful. I'll get pictures someday for you to see. Oh wait, look here. Well, I'll find better ones but at least you can kind of see.

27 May 2007

Don't you wish life was like the movies?

Sometimes I do. Not the Freddy Krueger or Jason or Jurassic Park movies, of course, but the great ones with the happy, wonderful moments. Of course I'm a sap and often feeling like I'm missing out on life. But then am I really?

Anyway...that's a whole other topic. Today I was flipping channels and I came across Forrest Gump (My name is Forrest Gump. People call me Forrest Gump.). Tom Hanks is an incredible actor. I love this movie and I came into it at my favorite part. Forrest is standing at the Vets for Peace rally in 'our nations capitol' and says his name. Jenny and he find each other in the middle of the memorial pool, which for the life of me right now I can't think of the real name of it. Anyway, every time the run out to meet each other I start bawling. I love that moment.

Sometimes I wish I could have a moment like that, where I meet up with my long lost love and we embrace and have a wonderful moment. Maybe I've had mini ones like that, where I've come back from trips and what not and met up with people. But it's never quite felt like it seems like it feels with Jenny and Forrest. But maybe it's just the cinematic feeling. I don't know. Maybe I'm wishing for more than I should. Maybe I'm feeling too much like Meg Ryan in You've Got Mail where she talks about how so often something she sees reminds her of something she read in a book when, “shouldn't it be the other way around?”

Maybe I'm just wishing life was as easy as it seems in movies. Like Forrest going for a run just cause he felt like running (and not seeming to have a hard time doing it either). Or like the Kathrine Switzer book I'm reading where (though I know it was hard) the marathons she runs seem to come so simply. I don't know.

Maybe I'm just scared of everything in my life – where I'm going, what I'm doing, where I'll be in life. Or maybe I'm just being stupid, as usual.


Today has been interesting. I slept in (bad Moe!) and had a dream that I was watching a baby, a very chubby baby in my room and I took him into the shower with me to see if he would like the water. But while we were in the shower I heard a bump and went out to the room and where the table is in reality the table was gone and on the floor was a blanket with another baby sort of sprawled out on it. I laid the first baby down on the bed and went to pick up the other and he felt like a rag doll...looked like one too. He had long arms that long and thin and didn't seem to have bones in them, legs were similar. It was very strange.

But then I went to church. It was Pentecost so the Spirit was alive and well. Church was awesome...they had a hanging thing in the center of the sanctuary that had strings of votive holders with red votive candles lit and hanging from it. It's hard to describe but it was very cool to see. I'll check their site and see if they have a picture of it. (update: yeah, no they don't) But at church I got to see my old choir buddies and luckily got to run in Well Dressed Man. He works at LS and I didn't see him yesterday. WDM is awesome. I'd bribe him with Lemonheads for great artwork around my desk. I explained (and this is true) that I have a box of Lemonheads in my cupboard and I've been meaning to mail it to him or bring up the next time I come to the cities but I hadn't, but that every time I open that cupboard I think of him.

It was great to see him and Mark again. Then Debbie and Jerry and I went to Wilde Roast for lunch. YUMMY! Then I went to Patina's to check out their fun stuff. I picked up a new lunch bag so I don't have to carry my food back and forth in a Patina bag anymore. Yet I will be carrying my lunch in a bag I bought from Patina so does that make it a Patina bag?

Then it was off to the Guthrie. *sigh* I love the Guthrie. Today's show was Major Barbara by George Bernard Shaw. It was pretty good. I enjoyed it at least, except for the people sitting next to me when the guy couldn't figure out what was going on and kept asking his girlfriend to explain it. Oh and the false fire alarm going off just before the end of Act I kind of sucked. But the last act was awesome. I loved the set. But then again, the Guthrie always has remarkable sets. It was great.

And then supper with cah at TGIFridays. Good eats, good talk, good times.

These last two days have been jammed packed and yet flown by. I loved every minute. It's so great to be back here and seeing people. It's so wonderful to be accepted again. I love it.

Tomorrow brings me back to the 'real' world. Back home, back to my apartment and back to training. I have to hit it hard now. I've put it off too long. I've got to kick it into gear and kick my own ass. It'll suck but it'll be so very important to my ultimate goal (inching closer and closer every day). Uffda.

26 May 2007

I'm normal!

Here's the bad thing about long drives – I end up thinking of about 20 great blog topics but by the time I get to my computer to type them in, I've forgotten them all. So instead of all my brilliance you're going to get this. Sorry all!

Today I headed up to the cities for graduation and a weekend away. I found myself this afternoon, as I was driving around the old 'hood, with a simple smile on my face. I was somewhat surprised to find it there but at the same time it felt right. There's just something about this place that helps me to right myself with the world.

Years ago when I moved here I was really at a loss as to who I was or what I was going to be. And while I'm still occasionally at a loss for this, I have found that here I can truly be myself – whoever that may be on that particular day. But some basics: Here I can like the Indians, all kinds of art not necessarily landscape pieces (Russian even!), jazz, gay men, gay women (not in that way, not that there's anything wrong with that), theatre (even the pompous way of spelling it), etc. Here I can be who I am without worrying what people think. For some reason when I'm at my new place of dwelling I'm always on guard: I don't like sd/mn sport teams; I don't like hunting or fishing; I don't like country music; I don't like Terry Redlin, the state's version of TK. But to speak this in public, I'm seen as an oddity. But here, sigh, it doesn't matter one way or another. It just feels more accepting.

Case in point. I came back today for graduation. I walked in the door and was immediately embraced by several people, even people I didn't think would ever do that (Skip!). Over the next few hours I was accepted back into the society I recently and abruptly left. I laughed, I joked, I hugged, I smiled...I felt whole again. Toward the end of the evening I met up with our campus pastor. He's so great and one of the few Indians fans on the planet. We rejoiced in the second victory of our team over Detroit today (6-3 – go Indians!) and then we talked. And we joked about life, we discussed the situations around us and in the end we hugged and he said that they really missed me there. Not just my smiles and happy face (I was a great actor some days), but mainly because I was NORMAL.

I know, I know...stop laughing dear readers. You all know me best, seeing my writings and ramblings here, but to be called normal for maybe the first time in my life was awesome. It brought back the wholeness feeling again.

Anyway – it was so good to see people again: Terri, Bob, Karen's Mom (I missed your name! Sorry! Hey, comment and leave it there!), Karen (natch), Marc, Edith, Jason, Joe, Mo, Jimmy, Carol, Deb (am I really going to list everyone?), Debbie, John, Michael, Skip, Dave, pditty, Rollie, who am I missing?, Victoria, Arthur, Brett, Nina, Rick, Dave... okay I'm missing people. But I do love you all!

And now I'm going to bed, because I am going to get my flabby butt out of bed and run in the morning. Cross your fingers everyone!

25 May 2007

stupid musings

Every now and then I find myself thinking. I know, it's a scary thing, but I do it anyway. Lately I've been thinking about life in general. I watched Friends With Money tonight. It was interesting, though kind of weird how it ended. I guess the basic premise was that money doesn't make life easier. But not knowing what you want or who you are doesn't help either.

For the longest time I've never known what I should do with my life. And even though I have this great job now, I still don't know. I wonder some days just what my purpose in life is. I think about the future and wonder if I'll look back and wish I had done something different, wish that I hadn't stopped my life short by taking this job in this city when I'm so young.

Which of course leads me to the next thought about what my future will look like. I'm sure I'll be continuing at this place of work, but will I rise on the ladder? Will I switch positions (probably), what would it be? And then I think about the rest of my life.

I'm slowly becoming a runner. I'm not there yet, nowhere close to it. But I'm working on it. I wonder if I'll be able to continue this. Will I ever run a major marathon and finish at a decent runner's time? Should I even be asking this question when I haven't run the first marathon?

And what about the rest of my days? I can't spend my whole life running (well I could but...). So where will my life lead me. I guess the basic question is, will I ever get married? Okay, so I'm only 32 and shouldn't be too worried about this yet, I know. But the question comes to mind. Maybe it's just that I'm kind of missing the questions from the family – you know the ones, “So do you have a boyfriend yet?” “When are you going to get married?”

Well, I don't know if I really miss the questions, but maybe I do. It's not great to be reminded that I'm single by my family, but they haven't asked in so long either. Which makes me wonder why they don't ask anymore? Do they not care? Do they see that I really don't do anything with my life except run, watch TV, work and sleep?

Anyway, I don't know. Maybe I'm just wondering a lot since I'm watching Wonder Woman Season 1. I'm sure that's it. Maybe I just wish I had the guts and the body to walk around in her 'uniform'. I love the red boots.

24 May 2007

This glass is now half empty

Today at noon, I attempted the 5K once again. I ran the same course I did in March and today I was 1:20 faster. That is, just in case you're confused, I ran it in 33:36. And the kicker of it all, which makes me happy yet in some ways a little sad, I ran it without stopping. It felt good until the end of mile 3, then I was struggling. But I did get a kick in at the end which felt pretty good too.

Okay, so because I am a pessimist, I broke down at the end of the run for the simple reason that I ran it without walking or stopping once and I only shaved off 1:20. Which means I could have walked that one time I wanted to and probably still beat my time from 2 months ago.

But, that said, I'm really glad I didn't walk. It felt good to complete a so-called race without stopping for once and truly I felt like I had a pretty good pace (10:48 min/mile). And if I can keep that pace up, if I did my math right, I would complete the marathon in 4:47:00. (give or take the seconds) That's under 5 hours! Truly I'm hoping to finish in 5:30 but if I can do it around 5 hours I'll be super super happy.

And I got my fuel belt today, so this weekend I can try it out (or maybe tomorrow). I'm so excited. It fits great and with the limited amount of jumping up and down I could do in my apartment it didn't move at all (which was part of the appeal of the belt itself). I'm excited to try it. I think it will great!

23 May 2007

135 days to go

Yep, as of Thursday it will be 135 days until race day. I'm starting to freak out. My legs are sore often (I need to see Keith!), I'm tired, I'm worried, and while reading Kathrine Switzer is totally inspiring, it's also totally frightening (She keeps calling herself an average woman, not a 'real runner'. Uh, if you run your first marathon in 4:20 without stopping you are a real runner whether that's a jogger's pace or not.)

So yeah, I'm freaking out. 135 days, and the farthest I've run/walked is 9 miles – without food or water which was really stupid – and that about killed me. So I'm scared.

Tomorrow, aka Thursday, I'm going to run my 5K course again. In March I finished in 34:56. I'm really hoping I can drop that down some tomorrow. Most days I'm running 4 miles during noon. Today I ran a mile up a steady, curvy incline without stopping (which was pretty amazing for me) with my shins and calves hurting, but stupid me forgot to time it. Ran back down and the round trip I think was about 20 minutes. I take that back...I stopped twice. Once at the top of the hill to yell, “holy shit!” and then once to tie a shoe on the way back down. It felt pretty good though.

Then I did pushups and situps (in prep for our work test coming up in July or August). The situps (aka crunches in our world) were okay. I did 32 just to make sure I could do them after doing Abs of Steel on Monday (my ab muscles still hurt – and it's allergy season...ugh). Pushups were another story. Ugh. I did 10 normal and 10 with my knees. These will be a struggle, but one I will overcome.

Anyway, I'm still freaking out about the marathon. Am I stupid to really think I can do this? Again, I love reading Kathrine. She really is amazing, but man! I'm not a sub-3 runner. I'm not even a sub-4 jogger, or probably even a sub-5 jogger/walker! Right now I just want to finish, and I'd like to finish with as little walking as possible. I have some work to do. But I need motivation.

I am getting geared up though. I ordered a fuel belt with four bottles for my next long distance run. It should be here tomorrow, hopefully. I am now drinking Accelerade before my runs (and will drink during once I get my fuel belt) and Endurox afterward. They are both great, the first really gets me going, but I love the latter. I recover much quicker than I have without it. I can totally feel the difference.

Oh, motivation – so I found this on Sophzilla today:

Just put yourself ahead in time, pretend that it's next month already, and imagine that the past 4 or so weeks just totally rocked. Every hope you now possess for the coming weeks has manifested. Every challenge was breezed through. Every cool person stayed cool, every trickster became an ally, there were happy surprises along the way, and, you got plenty of sleep.

This is how we do it.
Kung Fu -
The Universe

Hopefully this will help. I need to think ahead, right, and figure out where I'll be in a month and how I'm going to feel, look, and think. I will be farther along then than I am now. Hopefully running the 5K again tomorrow and hopefully decreasing my time will help inspire me. I can only hope.

21 May 2007

Shallow Moe

Well, it's true. I'm petty. And here's why:

I miss sacking my own groceries.

I know this seems stupid, but I really do miss it. I love grocery shopping – checking out the produce, picking just the right pieces of chicken, selecting spices for the latest and greatest recipe I've found. And the culmination of all these choosy options (choosy mom's choose jif!) was purchasing and packing my items in my green bag made for me by Mary Ann.

I have a system, I truly do, when I pack up my groceries. Eggs go on the bottom. (I know – people everywhere are cringing just at the though that those words may be uttered ever – but trust me I've never broken an egg.) Fruit of course is on the top. Other things get placed in the proper position, all which makes it work for one bag (maybe two if I have chicken...then I will put that in plastic in case it leaks).

Anyway, here where I live, there are sackers at the end of every checkout and they get really annoyed if you try to sack your own groceries. Now if these are young kids, I don't care if I piss them off, but when it's retired men who may or may not have to work to make ends meet, then I just feel awful telling them I brought my own bag and trying to bag things myself.

Part of my pettiness is that I feel awful these guys have to work. And like I said, maybe they don't have to work, maybe they just want to have something to do with their days. But what if they do have to work to make ends meet. What if this was the only job they could get, the only place they are hired and the only way they can put meat on the table? And I come in all miss snazzy pants with my “I have my own bag” crap. How does that make them feel? How does that make me look?

Today I went to the store and I walked out feeling petty – because I brought my own bag, because I tried to sack my own stuff (I did end up letting him do it, though he didn't seem too pleased), and mostly because I felt like my shopping experience had been a let down. The culmination of everything didn't come to fruition and I feel petty because of it. All because I wish I could have sacked my own groceries instead of the retired guy doing it.

17 May 2007

It must have been very dusty...

...for the Indians swept.

Color Schemes

So tonight I was Stumbling...if you haven't done it ask my brother about it. It's worse than just clicking links from various sites. But I don't want to go into that now. Anyway, I came across a site that determines your personality based on the color pattern you pick. You do it once, then wait 180 seconds and do it again. Here were my results:

Your Existing Situation

Active, but feels that insufficient progress or reward is being made for the effort exerted.

Your Stress Sources

Wants a partner with whom she can share fully in an atmosphere of cloudless serenity, but her compulsion to demonstrate her individuality leads her to adopt a critical and demanding attitude. This introduces discord and leads to alternating periods of drawing closer and drawing apart, so that the ideal state she desires is not allowed to develop. Despite the urge to gratify her natural desires, she imposes a considerable self-restraint on her instincts in the belief that this demonstrates her superiority and raises her above the common herd. Discerning, critical and particular, having taste and discrimination. These qualities, combined with her tendency to judge things for herself and to express her opinions with authority. She enjoys the original, the ingenious and the subtle, striving to ally herself with others of similar taste who can help her in her intellectual unfolding. Desires admiration and the esteem of others.

Your Restrained Characteristics

Feels that she is receiving less than her share and that there is no one on who she can rely for sympathy and understanding. Pent-up emotions make her quick to take offense, but she realizes that she has to make the best of things as they are.

Willing to become emotionally involved, but demanding and particular in her choice of a partner and in her relations with those close to her. Needs reassurance and is careful to avoid open conflict since this might reduce her prospects of realizing her hopes.

Your Desired Objective

Urgently in need of rest, relaxation, peace, and affectionate understanding. Feels she has been treated with a lack of consideration and is upset and agitated as a result. Regards her situation as intolerable as long as her requirements are not complied with.

Your Actual Problem

Wants to be valued and respected, and seeks this from a close and peaceful association of mutual esteem.

Your Actual Problem #2

Needs to protect herself against her tendency to be too trusting, as she finds it is liable to be misunderstood or exploited by others. Is therefore seeking a relationship providing peaceful and understanding intimacy, and in which each knows exactly where the other stands.

I'm not sure what to do with all this. Some of it, well most, is right on. I wonder what my results would be like if I take it again after I finish the marathon. Will it make a difference?

16 May 2007


Okay, I've never been an AI fan, but this year I was really inspired by Jordin and Melinda, especially Melinda. I cannot believe she was just voted off. This is why I hate this show. She was phenomenal. I've never known a better singer on AI (other than Jordin...she rocks too). (And for the record...I did vote).

All I can say is that Melinda better have an album out soon.


Today is one of those days. My dad would have been 71 today. It's very odd to think about that. I was 19 when he died. A lot has changed in my life, in myself, since that day. It's just strange.

Who would have thunk it, that I'd be back in this state, living in an apartment, driving a Mini, and working the best job at the best place in the state? I think about my career path – if Dad had let me have my way in high school I would have had 14 years of active duty Air Force under my belt. Thank goodness he refused to let me do that, and I was too much of a chicken to defy him. Apparently he knew me better than I knew myself because that was the smartest thing I never did.

But now, I'm working full-time and the greatest place on earth and loving almost every minute of it. I think Dad would be proud of me. I'd hope he would be. I know he'd love that I was closer to home, and the fact that I'm working where I am would please him immensely and maybe make him a little jealous. I'm making my career what Dad always wanted to do, but couldn't.

Anyway, happy birthday, Dad. I love you and miss you.

15 May 2007

A few updates to catch us up

Running: I have now run not only a 5K but also a 10K. I just ran the 10K last Saturday and finished, though I was only fourth from the end. At least I wasn't DAL but it wasn't very motivating. The woman who won ran it in 39 minutes. I ran it in 72:47 with an 11:43 pace. This isn't bad for a jogger's marathon; but for a 10K where everyone was out for blood (it felt like) this sucked. Anyway, I struggled through it (running it for the first time on my own and with nary a friend in site) and finished. At one point I did want to hurt the 'helpers' on the side of the road 'cheering' us on as they decided to run the rest of the race with me. When I told them I wasn't the last one they were shocked and said, dejectedly, I guess we'll wait then. Jerks. Oh well.

I have also officially signed up for the TC marathon, after which I sent an email to 2 of my friends who then signed up themselves. Of course one then called me and said it's all my fault that she signed on, but in reality she was the one who had talked me into running it in the first place! :) ah, too funny.

Plants: I have replanted two plants for the first time ever. Herman was growing out of his little pot and my viney plant, yet to be named though I've had him for 3 years, was growing out of his. So the viney plant is now in Herman's pot and Herman has a super sweet blue pot. He seems much happier, even though it's only been a day.

Knitting: I'm working on lap blankets for my friend Debbie's workplace. So far I have two finished, but I need to keep working on them. I'd like to get several done soon so the fine residents can stay warm!

Baking: I have, for the first time, rhubarb in my fridge and a hope to make a strawberry rhubarb pie for the first time ever. I'm really nervous about this since I've sort of have the apple pie thing down, but I've never ever baked anything with rhubarb. It should be interesting. Hopefully I'll complete that tomorrow before the rhubarb goes bad.

Sleeping: I'm sleeping better. Exercise really does make a person tired, but I feel great too (other than my right shin which has been pained lately, though after 2 miles running on it today at noon it felt great - weird). I love my bed, I love my pillows, I love to sleep. My sister seems to think I sleep in on the weekends, though, and I don't. I'm a strict 9:30-10pm down to sleep until 5:30-6am waker.

I think that's the excitement so far. I'm glad I'm back blogging. I have missed this. But just to forewarn everyone, there will be much talk of running, knitting, baking and sleeping over the next few weeks. I can't help it. These are a few of my favorite things.

The time is here

It's hard to believe but it's true! Really, it is! I have a computer and Internet access at my home. Shocking, I know.

But it's true. And here I am writing my first blog in my apartment. I did load up a few blogs I had emailed to myself over the last month. Forgive me for fixing the timestamp to be more accurate, but I do like to have things in order.

I have so much to tell you all but I'm going to keep this brief (at least for right now...who knows what the night will bring!). So, thank you all for holding out while it took me forever to get a computer and Internet hooked up. I appreciate your patience. If I could afford to buy you all a superhero necklace, I would.

12 May 2007

How old am I, really? And a story of a 10K.

Some days I feel old, wise beyond my years (granted, most of these days are few and far between). These days I feel like I have things together where I know what I am doing and why I am doing it.

Most days though, I feel like I'm not the age I should be. Today for example, I really felt like I was just out of college – young, confused and sad. This morning I ran my first 10K. I'm still learning to be a runner, granted, but God I felt pretty pathetic.

The morning started out okay. I got up early, took a shower to warm up my legs and maybe loosen my muscles a bit with the moist heat :) and be able to pull my hair back without worry. I got dressed, checked the weather, and stretched a bit. On the way to the start of the race I tried an orange flavored GU for the first time. Truly that was pretty nasty but supposedly these are important for runners. The directions said to have one 15 minutes before exercising with 3-4 oz of water and then hydrate along the way.

So that was my plan. I had the GU, had to park 8 blocks away, and brought my water with me. This race was huge. I've never seen so many people (I can only imagine what TC will be like). Of course this was walkers and runners (both 5K and 10K) so there were a lot more and since it was to raise money for breast cancer research, it drew a lot of people – survivors, those walking/running in memory or honor of someone, and then just the weirdos like me running to see if I could.

The race for 5K and 10K started at the same time. I took my place toward the end of the pack (I figured I'd be there anyway so why have the dejection and humiliation of all those people passing me) and prepared to run. I still had my water bottle in hand, figuring I'd need it and should use it while I ran. The starter man yelled “Go” and off we went (well, about a minute later since I was at the end of the pack).

The beginning of the race started okay...it was nice out – not too hot and not too cool at all. It was great. I felt really good to start. I didn't have any music (can't run with it at TC so why run with it here) so I just tried to concentrate on my breathing and the feel of the road beneath me. It was not only my first 10K but also my first solo race and my first race with my new Brooks shoes (which I'm really growing to love).

But slowly I lost my footing and lost my pattern and soon lost my breathing...and had to walk. I so wish I could just run without needing to walk. How can I get over this?

Anyway, I fell back in the pack, passed one last person (who also was walking) and stayed in that place the rest of the way. It's more than a little humiliating to meet the pack on their way back and you haven't even made it to the turn-around point. It's not so bad if you have someone with you, but when you're running all alone it makes me feel pathetic. A few of the forerunners shouted encouragements. One cute man yelled out, “You're doing great! See you at the end!” That helped...I felt a burst of energy for a brief moment and was able to keep going for a little ways further.

Toward the end of the race as I was on the return, all the 'helpers' along the way kept saying, “you're almost there!” Liars, all of them. I think that makes it worse when they say that. I wish they'd just tell you you're doing great and to keep it up. But no, they taunt you with the whole, “You're almost there!” and “It's just about over!” whatever. Knowing where I was (having run that stretch before) I knew it not to be true so it just hurt more than ever. At one point, I think I was at mile 4, I broke down crying while running...I felt so pathetic and like such a loser. And really I just felt alone. So very alone. I was at least a mile in front of the other 2 or 3 at the end, and at least another mile from those in front of me. I should have been happy. I should have felt great, running and overcoming odds and obstacles many people don't even attempt, but I didn't. I felt awful, a loser, and wondering what in the sam hell would have triggered my stupid decision to sign up for TC a week ago. It didn't help when I had ¾ of a mile left and two of the 'helpers' on the side said they were going to run the rest of the race with me and finish it up. I said, “That's great, but there are still people behind me.” They were shocked. Apparently people don't take over an hour to finish a 10K in this town. Sheee-it.

The end of the race was okay...I finished out (alone) and ran through the checkpoint for the time chip (alone) and one of the 'helpers' took my chip and band off for me and another gentleman handed me a water. I walked back to my car (alone) and drove home (alone). I felt very alone. (I bet you couldn't figure that out, huh?)

It wasn't that I wasn't proud of what I did. I finished 6.2 miles in 72 minutes and 47 seconds, a pace of 11:43. Not bad for a first time 10K pace and if I did that for TC I'd finish in about 5 hours and 15 minutes which would be fine since I just want to finish TC, preferably no more than 5:30. But to not have anyone to share it with just sucked.

Of course that said, I suppose I should tell people what I'm doing, especially my family. I did tell my brother and swore him to secrecy. But it's not like he can be at all my races, nor will he be at TC. I did tell my mom I was running today but she didn't come down. She had thought about walking it, and had suggested once that I should walk with her but I get shin splints when I walk in races (I walk too hard and fast, especially when I walk with her).

In some ways I feel like Kathrine Switzer – she didn't tell hardly anyone about the first time she ran Boston for a multitude of reasons. One of my biggest is that I don't want people bugging me about my training or looking at what I eat sometimes and then scoff at me or what if something happens and I can't run it or I can't finish – then what will I look like? A fool? A failure? Yes. And I hate to fail. Though for some reason it seems I do fail a lot in life.

I just want to be able to run without having to stop and walk all the time. I want to be able to breathe without feeling like I can't fill up my lungs or stomach with air. I want to feel like I can accomplish this goal I've set, and right now I'm not feeling like I can. Which is scary because I have only 4.5 months to train. That scares me.

Lord knows I've never been a runner. In high school I struggled to get up and down the basketball court. Volleyball was a better sport for me...you stayed on one side of the net. So why...why do I feel like this is something I can do? I'm insane.

But back to my original point of feeling like I'm just out of college – here I am, new to a city (even though I grew up near here – I've been gone a long time), new to a real job (not school related in any way, shape or form), and new to an apartment. Yes, I'm closer to my family which is great, but I have few friends, few options and it's just a little stifling.

Maybe I'm just sad because I didn't make it back to the cities last month. Maybe I'm sad because it seemed like even if I didn't go out all the time when I lived in the cities at least I had more options. But I feel like I'm 24 or 25...my friends have all graduated and moved on to their careers. I've done the same. We're spread over the country and see each other on rare occasions. I don't know. It's weird.

Besides who at age 32 decides to change their life and start running on a regular basis – and not because their doctor said they should. Only someone who is insane and probably doesn't quite know what they are or who they are would. Yep, I think that's me.