Wednesday, November 21, 2012

And the stupidest bumpersticker of the year award goes to...

slow down, 
you're going too fast, 
got to make the morning last

Simon and Garfunkel, Feeling Groovy

...the white Volkswagen hatchback that blew passed me at 70 klicks in a 50 zone at Provoncher and Archibald this afternoon at about 12:30. I'm not prone to road rage, but man, I was ticked off at this guy.  You would have been too!

The bumper sticker? 
It's only speeding if you get caught

I thought I was mistaking, is that even legal?  When I caught up to him at the red light I checked again... I must have been mistaking, no one would be that stupid... but sure enough, there it was, bold letters, red on white's only speeding if you get caught.  

I commute by vehicle daily, 45 minutes each way in addition to travelling between different job sites, and I see examples of bad drivers every day. But this bumper sticker, this particular driver ticked off more so than usual. It's the self-centered message, don't-give-a-flying-care-for-others attitude that sets this guy apart from all the others.  He even as the audacity to brag about his stupidity. It's sad really... but it still make my blood boil!

I was mad. 

I wanted to confront him and remind that he's in a school zone. I wanted to shake him. I wanted to  make him squirm. I wanted him to attend a funeral of a young person killed by someone with an arrogant attitude such as his. I wanted to tell him about the lingering pain of losing a loved one.  I wanted to tell him the emptiness and regret he would have for the rest of his life.  

I wanted to talk.

I wanted to tell him about Amy, and her uncle Michael.

Michael is a regular guy, a runner, and a blogger (like me in many ways). I have never met him but I've followed his blog for years. He lives in the San Francisco area and he strikes me as the kind if guy whose company I would enjoy over a beer. I would like to go for a run with Michael.   Yes, I would enjoy his company on a run and over a beer. We would have much to discuss and share. 

In time, and over miles, Michael would tell me the story of Amy.

Michael's 27 year old niece, Amy was killed by an inattentive speeding driver one morning while she was on her daily 4 mile run.  Michael has committed to run 12 marathons in 2013 to honour her memory and raise awareness of the dangers of speeding.  Click here to follow his journey. I will add Amy's name to my bib on my next marathon.

How about you?

It's a good day to be alive... let's slow down and enjoy it!


Monday, November 12, 2012

Down Again

I won't bore you with the details, but I will tell you that I'm injured, again.  And it still sucks. And I'm still learning to embrace that suck, but I'm not doing so well in this department. The embrace eludes me yet the suck is in my face and greets me every morning with an insidious grimace. 

And not running still feels lethargic and thick and dull.  And I'm still a big baby when it comes to not running. And I want to run. And it hurts so, not running. Not running, says an old friend, is the continual presence of absence. I say it is the absence of presence, but what does it matter? It aches either way.

I lied.  

I will bore you with the details because it is part of my self-diagnosed therapy, that and staring out the window marvelling at the beautiful bodies that gracefully dance in and out of view. Truly my heart skips a beat as a runner approaches - they look amazing with red cheeks and eyes sparkling and skin glowing. 

it aches 
as they fade 
from view 
of exhaust
like steam trains  
they round 
the rail 
from view

The power of running is magnetic and it pulls hard from the sidelines.  

Okay, enough of that woe is me stuff...

I haven't run in 9 days and 2 hours.

I lied.

I ran today to test the waters. It didn't go so well. The left calf seized again at mile one and I limped home at an agonizingly slow pace.  Stretching aggravates it more so I type this blog seeking more therapy.

Nine days and two hours ago I ran home from work - 11 miles. It was a gorgeous run and all was wonderful in body, in mind and in spirit... I'm humming along, top of my game, thinking, breathing, happy when suddenly ... at mile 10... I zigged a little to avoid a taxi cab backing out of a driveway.  It was hardly a sudden move, but it was enough to tweak the left calf, just briefly enough to open the door, just a tiny crack, just wide enough for that unwelcome guest to latch on to the left soleous.  Wow, it latches on hard and so fast and without warning! 

Having been down this road a few times I know the drill... massage, physio, rest... lots and lots of rest.  Yuck, rest. 

My physiotherapist analyzed my shoe.  First the tread where she found nothing unusual. Then, upon close examination, she noticed wear on the inner side of the left shoe (click 'em big).

My Aisics 2140's 
Look a little closer
And closer yet...
There you go, see it now?
I'm not sure what to make of this pattern.  I checked my old running shoes dating back several years and sure enough, same pattern, same wear, in the same place. Clearly my left foot swings inward and rubs against my right inner shoe.  My right shoe has a similar scar but not as distinctly as my left.  I don't feel my left shoe making contact with my right shoe, but heck, it must be happening. The evidence is clear as day!

Could this be my problem?  Is this why my left calf pops once or more a year?  What can I do about it?  

Sorry for lying... sorry for bothering you with the messy details of my running issues.

It really is a good day to be alive.  My left calf is a minor nuisance, insignificant in the bigger realm. It's frustrating and it steals some joy, but it's also teaches me patience and reminds me that I am alive. I will embrace that suck because the embrace makes me stronger.

It's a good day to be alive.

You be well, all of you.