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Hello my dear blog, it's been awhile...

Thursday, March 11, 2010

This week has been an absolutely fantastic week in a couple of different ways. One of the things was that I started taking Zumba classes again. It's been a blast getting my body moving and active again. I love the music that we get to dance to and the people that I get to see (although I'm missing some of my peeps from the first couple of sessions that I took). They're doing different dances now, which has given me quite a bit to learn, but it's been a good challenge to have.

Yesterday a friend and I were supposed to go walking after I got off work. It didn't happen. And the thing was, I knew (in the back of my mind) that she was going to bail on me. The night before she didn't seem super excited about getting out and walking. I know she's had a lot on her plate lately, so I was going to give her a "get out of jail free card" for the night.

But, the thing was that I hadn't exercised earlier in the day. And I was getting downright antsy. It was too lovely a day outside earlier in the day for me to pass up a chance to go out and enjoy it. So, I donned my workout gear, climbed into my car, and headed off to one of my favorite places to walk. When I got there, I was very disappointed to discover that I the battery for my iPod was dead.

No iPod = no Nike+ chip to help me track my miles, pace, and calories.

I figured that was something I could deal with. I mean, I've gone how long without having that nifty little tool to help me track things?

But no iPod also meant something else.

No music.

No tunes pressing me on towards the goal that I had. No tunes to help guide my thoughts and entertain me during the time I spent along the path.

See, the thing that always seemed the worst about Bloomsday (when I was thinking about it before actually doing it last year) was that iPods are not allowed on the course.

At all.

There are many reasons for this, the primary one being safety. But they also have a lot of local bands and groups who perform along the course and they want you to be able to experience their music and them to have exposure to a wider audience than they may normally get.

At any rate, I was filled with dread for the next 40 minutes.

I reset my watch for 40 minutes (instead of the intervals I had set for my jogging) and set off down the path.

All in all, it wasn't so bad. I found myself focusing on things that I may not have normally heard, including keeping track of the pace of my breathing. I was so pleased to discover that I actually had a system down. Breathe in for four steps, breathe out for four steps. Repeat over and over again. No stitches in my side, no feeling extra winded, I even might have been able to carry a conversation (sort of)....

As I was coming back down the path, there were some geese in the middle of the walkway. I like to think they were out for an evening stroll, enjoying the way the sun was glinting off the river. They were muttering to each other, too, as geese often do. And no, not a single one of them tried to attack me.

But, there were some others further on down the path that were just standing on the edge, not doing much of anything. I glanced over to the right and there was a woman trying to walk her black lab...but she couldn't use the path because the dog would have chased down the birds and she wouldn't have been able to keep up (at least, that's what I surmised). She ended up walking her dog in the grass that made up the "yards" for the condos along the path.

As I was jogging, she asked me if I would be so kind as to chase the birds off the path, which I did gladly.

I haven't chased birds since I was a small child. It made me feel all giddy inside to see these 4 geese go flying off the path and land in the water in the marina below, honking irritably the whole time.

The woman thanked me and brought her dog onto the path, and I told her "you're welcome" and went on my merry little way, a big smile plastered on my face.

If I had been wearing my headphones, I don't know that I would have heard her calling out to me nor would I have really paid much attention to her. So I'm glad that I was able to help her out, even if it was a small service.

The path I was using follows the river, with a couple of hotels mixed in with the condos. One of the hotels that I jogged by had an exercise room that had windows looking out over the river. I didn't really notice anyone in there on my way down the path, but on the return trip I noticed a couple of men using the treadmills in there. The treadmills had TV's on top of them, with a spot to plug in your headphones so you could listen to whatever you happened to be watching without disturbing your neighbor.

And I found myself getting disgusted with "them", the people who cannot workout without the distraction of the TV or a book. And then the thought caught me off guard:

"What about people who can't workout without their music?"

And I had to laugh at myself--because I'm in that same boat. 40 minutes of exercising without my beloved iPod and I was already becoming an exercise purist/snob.

Anywho...the iPod is now all charged-up. I now know that I don't absolutely have to have it with me when I go jogging. All the same, I'm working on organizing a new workout playlist (which has me excited like you wouldn't believe because of the awesome new tunes that are gonna be on it) and I'll be pounding the streets again some time soon. If not tomorrow morning, then definitely on Saturday and Sunday.

Saturday I'll be walking a 5K race with a friend of mine. It's the St. Pat's day race--I even have a special green shirt ready for it. Just in case the pinchers are out early--you know who you are. ;o)

Ordinarily, Sunday is a rest day for me, but a friend of mine is starting up a Running 101 group and we're meeting that morning. The first meeting was last Saturday and it went pretty well. We did intervals of walking 1 minutes and jogging 1 minute, up to a little over a mile. Whenever we would finish our jogging interval, the people up ahead would circle back and gather together until the group was keeping pace with the slowest runner in the group.

I don't know how it's going to work this Sunday because we'll be at a track instead of a park, but it should be a good time and a bit more of a challenge since I'm used to having a longer "rest" period between jogging sessions. Then again, I'm also used to jogging longer periods.

I will say this, though. I love running with a group--it pushes me a bit more than I would normally push myself.

And I can't believe that I just said that I love running at all, let alone a group.

Dear Lord, what is happening to me??? ;o)
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