A few weeks after SOB, I felt like I was in some sort of slump. Running was not as enjoyable, and I couldn’t even hit 8:30 comfortably. Glad to report that after I stopped stressing out about it, took my runs and rest as they happened (no scheduled training plan), things fell back into place.
Runs have been in the East Oakland area and increasingly more in the Oakland Hills/Redwood Regional Park areas. When at work, the runs are monotonous and repetitive, but at least there’s a lot to look at in terms of people-watching. Lately, I’ve also been amassing more meetings on my calendar and so I’ve had to run during my lunch hour. It delays my lunch and it makes me hangry, but it would be worse if I didn’t get my run in. In any case, it’d be nice if Golden Gate Park were in SOMA… the Embarcadero gets old fast.
The Velodrome though. I wouldn’t say I’ve been cheating on running with track racing, but if I could go to the Velodrome whenever and have it be a super low-maintenance affair I’d probably go at LEAST every other day.
So far I’ve been three times. First was with Mr. Fro and the work crew. We had probably the most fun session leaders that day. After an intense session, Mahmoud treated us all to sushi in Japantown SJ. Second was with Mr. Fro and our new roommate/tenant WC. Unfortunately, the session leader that time was verbose to the point of condescending and annoying. She also caused my first fall at the track – she neglected to inform WC and me that a push exercise was to be done left to right, with the pusher lower on the track than the pushee. After I fell, I proceeded to make my own workout for the next 10 minutes, ignoring everything she said because I was pissed. Third was with Fro and WC again; we had a trio leading the session. One was a track nerd, another a very grizzled and strict-looking military-style coach type, and the last was a fun-loving, motivational coach type. Military-style coach man and I got into it pretty quickly, after I refused to do the contact and push drills. He was also weird about me wearing a tank top (apparently cycling jerseys are made with short sleeves to prevent crazy road burn scars on your shoulders… which is fine, but what about the forearms and hands, if you’re really about it? and then what about how fricking hot it gets?). I of course give him the nonchalant ‘I don’t really care about scars, if I fall then I fall’ kind of line, and that probably didn’t go well either. However, Mr. Fro did tell me later that the same guy said I had good race form. So that’s cool, I guess.
The best track effort I’ve done was on the first day, where we each did a flying 200 at the end of the session. Team pursuit is fun, where you and about 5 others have to stay together as much as possible and chase the other group of about 6 people. It is challenging and whether you win, at least at these beginner sessions, is really dependent on your team’s weakest link. I’m always stoked when that person isn’t me (because the max number of women at these sessions so far that I’ve seen is 3, including me). Scratch races are where there’s a mass start and a free lap at the beginning where you establish your position, and the race begins after that first lap for X number of laps. It’s all about pacing and figuring out when to pick up the pace or go all out, depending on your own ability and how the others take the race. So really like running a track race… but with bicycles on concrete (or wood).
F ribbon rides and all that boring sht. I really hope I don’t have to be in a session with that woman from my 2nd visit… but they alternate weekends, so blargh to that.
Last thing that’s been taking up my life is homeownership. Moving was a huge btch, and I don’t even have stuff like that. I can’t even imagine what it’s like to actually move apartments/houses for real. Since closing on this new place, there have been 4 (3 successful) Borax assaults on ants… some dry cracking grout between two surfaces (a no-no)… a melted hood that finally malfunctioned, uncovering some improperly assembled/installed live wires… a palm tree that is right in the middle of power lines… window trims with dry rot that need replacing… tenant stuff (although they are generally awesome, I probably would have a lot more headaches with other tenants). But it’s a lot. As Mr. Fro has been saying, why is it a thing to say that first-time buyers should buy houses? I don’t know. It is pretty daunting and it’s overwhelming to think about and take care of. You just can’t think about everything at once, like I just did, or you say fuck all and I just don’t give a shit about any of it BBALAH I’m leaving.
Back to running real quick! I was planning to run the Berkeley Trail Adventure in Tilden Regional, but then there was a much more interesting looking trail run in November called the Mt. Tam Trail Run. Running the half marathon distance with Mr. Fro and WC. It’s WC’s birthday and a week before my birthday. There is a photo of the route and there is a ladder in it. :D Hopefully it is in the half marathon distance route. My next update will probably be a race report for that. Goodbye!