Thursday, December 29, 2011

Running again

Yesterday I had a really fun run!  Not all that far and not all that fast!  But a great time none the less.

Anytime I'm visiting my hometown, I HAVE to go for a run at Bay's Mountain Park.  I've run those trails for probably 30 years or more and I still get excited as I drive up to the Welcome Center.  The park has it all . . . sweet, flat fine-gravel roads, beautiful single track, views to kill for and hills . . . plenty of ups to suck your breath away and make your legs spaghetti!

This trip was especially nice because I was taking two beginning runners up there to run their first trails!  That's right . . . two total trail virgins!  My nephew, Andy Hicks and his wife Blake started running back in the spring and have become quite dedicated.  But they have always stayed on the roads so this was going to be fun.

Blake has been sick for several weeks and had not run much . . . and I was glad!  Not that she had been sick, but that I would have someone to walk some with me!  We decided to just do a short one around the lake on Lakeside Trail . . . a beautiful and fairly gentle trail but enough hills to make it a good experience.

Temps were in the high 30s or low 40s . . . perfect for a run!  Trails were in great shape . . . with just a little mud to make sure it was a genuine 'trail' experience.

We definitely didn't 'burn up' the trails . . . but that wasn't the plan or the point.  We all just wanted to get out there and run some and walk when we needed to.  And that is just what we did!  Most enjoyable!

When we got back to the planetarium I jokingly suggested we continue on up to the observation platform, thinking Blake and Andy would say no way.  How wrong I was!  Blake said let's do it!  And off we went.  Maybe 1/2 mile up to the top but I tried running sections!  Just what I needed!  And the views from the top were super.  I just love Bay's Mountain.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Off-topic Thoughts

Okay . . . disclaimer up-front.  I'm a Republican.  Not a "dyed in the wool" one but most Republican basic beliefs and my personal ones tend to line up fairly well.
  • the less government the better
  • minimize regulations
  • decisions are best made as close to the individual voter as possible
  • If people make decisions they must live with the consequences of their decision.
But I sure got upset at this last weekend's Republican debates.  Seems some folks suggest long-term consistent positions are a positive, and if someone has changed their positions it's bad.  Both Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich were put to task for changing some of their past positions.  Seems some believe folks should always be consistent.

But I believe consistency is not always a virtue!  I'm suggesting that if someone is always consistent, it is a PROBLEM, not a virtue.

Can you imagine in baseball, if a batter always bunted, or if a pitcher always threw a curve ball what would happen?  Their stay in the major league would be very, very short!  Batters would quickly adjust to the curve ball pitcher and in just a few innings batters would just tee off on the guy!

Situations change.  And different situations call for different responses and strategies.  Change is not a four letter word.

Imagine a world where everyone stayed consistent and unyielding in their beliefs.  No compromise . . . ever.  Nothing would ever be settled.  Republicans would just always say 'No new taxes!' and Democrats would never consider significant reductions in the size and scope of government.  Republicans . . . . no revenue increases and Democrats . . . no spending cuts.  Stalemate.   And things would just continue to get worse and worse.

Oh . . . wait a minute!  That is EXACTLY what is happening today.

Republicans . . . sometimes a tax increase may be okay.  A minor increase in taxes to super high-income individuals won't halt economic growth.  These folks can still get by.  And maybe . . . just maybe . . . to pull America out of the huge deficit we're in we may need to ALL PAY A LITTLE MORE TAX!  Not forever.  But maybe for a few years, we do.

Democrats . . . we've GOT to HUGELY reduce the size of our government and our regulations.  Sure groups of people will be hurt and they will protest and complain loudly.  But America is spending WAY too much.  And if we do raise taxes some, that money has to pay off our debts.  NOT MORE SPENDING!

We all probably know in our hearts we have to 1) reduce our spending, AND 2) increase our revenues.  BOTH!  PERIOD.  So get over it and start addressing the problem.

Our elected officials have to learn to compromise and NOT always be consistent.  Things that may make sense when our economy is growing and vibrant just don't make sense when times get tough.

I really believe that the major factor influencing Americas politicians . . . Republican and Democrat . . . is striving to get re-elected.  Make the voters happy and you're re-elected.  We need to remove that as a possibility so our elected officials can focus on what is good for America and not what will get them elected again.  Term limits are mandatory but will be hard to make happen.  Not sure it that is realistic or how to really get that started.  This has been talked about for years and years and nothing ever happens . . . except more talk.

But in the mean time, it's okay to change your thinking on things.

I honestly agree with Republicans  that our real problem is WAY too much government spending.  When you take it program by program it's hard to say no.  Health care for everyone . . . sounds good!  Medicare and Medicaid . . . fantastic  And this list goes on and on!  Quite frankly it would be nice to give everyone in America a new Lexus!  But we have to be realistic.

So many American look to the government to take care of them, rather then take care of themselves.  There is a feeling of entitlement . . . that they DESERVE unlimited unemployment, etc.  They are owed!

 So to stop or cut these programs back will make folks MAD.  Lots of fussing and complaining!  And if a politician is worried about getting re-elected, they will cave.  Give the people what they want.  But we've got to cut back . . . dramatically.

I'm a believer in going to each government agency and saying . . . your funds are cut 30%.  YOU figure out how to best fulfill your agency's mission with the new level of funding.  Each agency will figure it out!  Maybe it's not an across the board 30% . . . maybe it varies agency by agency, but the cuts should be large.  And these cuts are not just one-year cuts . . . they are long term cuts.

I wouldn't have said many of these things a few years ago.  But I'm changing my mind.  Our situation has changed and my positions have migrated in response to the new environment.  So I'm not consistent.  THANK GOD!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

It's all about YOU! And me!

I've got to admit, I'm somewhat torn about who this blog is for.

When I write stuff, I've got to admit I'm usually thinking about trying to make reading this enjoyable for you, my 5 readers!  I know there are quite a few folks that read my drubbings . . . I can see the web stats.  And I really do love it whenever anyone leave a comment.  (Quite frankly it just makes my day!)  Hopefully I can make you smile!  Or if I really "hit it out of the park" I'll make you laugh out loud!  But that doesn't happen much.

No . . . I'll settle for just entertaining you a little.  I know I'm not a talented writer, but I do get a kick out of writing this blog.  I try to keep my focus on running and running related topics.  But not always.  Sometimes I just ramble off course.

But I'm finding there are time I write this blog solely for me.  Selfishly.  Just to express whatever it is I'm feeling.  Reader be damned!  Like my last post about my excitement about being able to run again.  Not funny.  Not entertaining.  Just my real feeling about finally being able to again do what I love.

I don't apologize for this.  And I'm guessing you'll continue to see both kinds of blog posts from me.  Some may be somewhat entertaining.  Some may be totally boring.  Bottomline: You get what you pay for!!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

So happy!

Saw Dr. Jones, my hip surgeon, today and he was really please with were I was.  Jeff Miller, my PT, got me well along and basically strength and mobility were at 100% thanks to Jeff.

Dr Jones told me if I were 25 he would turn me loose . . . but since I'm 62 he thinks I need to go forward more slowly.  Start with a .5 mile run.  Then add a minute each day (if I can!).  Any pain I stop.  Period.

Today I ran my first easy 1/2 mile in 5:30 after a 1/2 mile warm up walking.  No pain whatsoever!  Sooooooo Happy!  I promise to keep within Dr. Jones' limits . . . but I'm running again!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Top 10 advantages to not running . . .

Okay . . . been thinking about this!  The top 10 advantages to not running . . .

10.  I've cut in half the amount of washing I do each week!

9. No race entry fees to pay!

8. I get to eat a 'real' lunch each day rather then either Subway or Starkist Lunch-To-Go Tuna.

7. Not having to listen to all the bad jokes told at the Y every day!

6. No travel expenses for a race!

5.  No running shoes purchases in months!  My shoes may be dry rotting, but they aren't wearing out!!

4.  My gel supply hasn't need to be replenished since June!

3.  My resting heart rate no longer freaks out my doctor!

2.  It doesn't matter that I haven't moved all my summer running clothes out to make room for my warmer winter clothes.

And finally . . .

1. When I get in my car to go home, it doesn't have that smell of sweaty running clothes that have had all afternoon to 'ripen!' 

So with all these great reason to be happy not running, why do I miss running so much?

Hopefully . . . this Thursday my doctor will tell me I'm okay to start running again!  I've got my fingers crossed! 

Ahhhh . . .  I can smell those sweaty clothes in the car already!

Blog Archive

About Me

My photo
Littleton, North Carolina
World's Slowest Runner . . . well, at least in contention for the honor. Just your average "below average" runner.