Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Running with Rodin

My first run in about a week was a good one. Katie and I were just in San Francisco and Palo Alto. At around 8am on Saturday, Katie got up and went for a swim in the hotel pool. It sucks trying to swim laps in a hotel pool, but it's better than nothing. It was probably only 12m long and with the two of us in there slapping about, it got to be like a bathtub. It might as well have been open water. There were no lines on the wall, so you never knew when you were going to slam into it. The waves were coming from every direction, so I was drinking water just like when I swim in Lake Erie.

After the swim, we changed clothes and hopped in the car to head over to the Stanford campus. We rain for about 45 minutes all over. We stopped our watches a couple times to check some stuff out near the university chapel and again in the Rodin garden. Absolutely awesome. If you haven't seen it, the Gates of Hell sculpture is one of those things that will stick in your mind for a long time. It is a huge bronze set of doors with all sorts of 3D human figures getting sucked into what looks like a vertical lake of boiling oil on the gates. Every time I see it, I notice new stuff in it. The Gates, which are based on Dante's Inferno were commissioned for a French art museum that was never built.

Life is F-ing with My Fitness

On October 24th, I am finally going to make Katie an honest woman. In the month and a half before our wedding, we will have been out to California for a couple of other weddings. Needless to say, it is going to be a busy fall. Sprinkle in some out of town guests here and there, a weekend of rafting in WV and a decent schedule of biking and running and there is pretty much no room for any curve balls.

I should have knocked on wood. My dog has been having some issues for the past several months. Up until recently, antibiotics have been taking care of the problem. Or so we thought. After the last flare up, our vet gave us a referral to go get some further testing done. The new vet was not able to complete the tests because she thought she found a tumor on the dog's bladder and recommended that I get her to an oncologist ASAP. Holy shit. Bladder cancer in dogs is nasty. It is just a terrible, humiliating way for a dog to go. And it takes them quickly. Flannery is about six, lazy as hell, but she looks really young for a six year old dog.

Basically, I lost my mind through the entire holiday weekend. How in the world would I be able to spend as much time with the dog and make her comfortable while we are going to be out of town so much in the next two months or so? I was panicked.

Last Wednesday, we met with the oncologist. He gave the dog a nice brazilian wax (almost her entire underside is shaved) and then ran a bunch of tests. The poor dog had all sorts of stuff up her ass. No Cancer!!! Thank God. I was a freaking mess worrying about that dog. I'll worry about how much the past week cost later on, I guess.

That's a really long way to say, that I didn't do a damn thing over the last week.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Fall in Cleveland

Fall in Cleveland can make you forget about how just how awful the winters here can be. This morning was just about perfect. And I needed it. Yesterday got pear-shaped right out of the gate and I wasn't able to get a ride in like I had hoped. Sometimes life just piles up a great big shit sandwich for those you care about. I figured a nice long run this morning would help beat things back a bit and get me a little bit of perspective. I am not so sure it did that, but I do feel better.

Katie and I got up fairly early, shook out the cobwebs and went for a pretty good run down to the lake and back. It was about 65 degrees, sunny and calm. Perfect. The airshow is down on the lakefront this weekend, so downtown was a little busier than normal. People were heading down to Burke Lakefront before 9am. We saw a couple pilots grabbing their morning coffee and the usual crowd of folks shuffling off to church.

When we left the house, we ran along the perimeter of Tremont, out to Lorain Ave and then over the bridge to downtown. We run up 9th past the Rock Hall and then down through the warehouse district to the Detroit Superior bridge. On W. 25th, I think Katie was trying to blow me up. That kind of crap just makes the title of the blog that much more apropos. About a mile and a half from home we were inches away from getting hit by a cab. I guess a left hand turn had the rightaway to people running in the crosswalk this morning. I slapped her back window pretty hard as she buzzed us and then gave her a piece of my mind when we caught her at a stoplight. Katie was a little less polite.

All told, we ran 8.9 miles in 1:07 (7:35/mi). I'll take it. 1200 calories in the hole before breakfast=a bunch of beer this afternoon. This afternoon we'll watch the Thunderbirds from a rooftop party downtown. Cleveland can be a pretty cool place.

Heres the run from this morning:

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

I know a bunch of folks who just finished their first Ironman. That got me thinking that maybe I should do one too. My fiancee must have been thinking the same thing because we both signed up for the Rev3 140.6 at Cedar Point on September 12, 2010. I don't get accused of being smart all that often, which probably explains a lot for me. As for Katie, I have no idea what her excuse might be. Our buddy Greg went ahead and signed up too. I suppose stupidity is contagious and we all caught it.

So, I guess this blog is going to help me chronicle how I go about ruining the next year or so of my life getting ready for this race. I might throw some other random crap up here too. With any luck, some of this might be entertaining for a person or two besides myself. There are several local and national athletes who blog pretty regularly. I'll no doubt copy off of them quite a bit.