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October and vanity

[Authors Note:  This post was originally written on October 19, 2010, but has been sitting in draft mode as I had run out of creative juices.  It’s now late November and I have more creative juices, thank you.]

Right then…

It seems that since summer showed up in June, it is determined to hang out until November, as summers typically last about five months in California.  To attest to this fact, it is – on October 12, about 88F.  Tomorrow, we’re looking at 92F.

So I ask the studio audience – precisely what the shit is this?   OK, yes, I realize that I was bitching about rain and overcast weather in May, but…that was May.  All this hot shit should have been done with by now.

Of course, as I’m typing this, I realize that I have forgotten about Indian Summer, where it gets unseasonably/unreasonably hot in October, before dipping in to Fall.  But it’s not that we actually have Fall in California – there’s just this period where we wear shorts and sweatshirts at the same time.  Now, after this unnamed period, there’s the period where we go to the snow.  In other places (like those with the snow that we go to) this is known as Winter.  The only real way we know it’s Winter is that there is less daylight and we can’t reasonably sleep with the windows open for a while.

But this is all academic, actually.

Personally, I’ve been going through one of my weird phases.  I have a fairly decent arsenal of interests in my quiver that I tend to rotate through – sometimes with frightening frequency.  A lot of these are somewhat seasonal or pertain to travel – I would not normally go sailing in November, unless I’m in the tropics.  Snowboarding in the summer has proven to be somewhat lacking.  I’ve never done any cold-weather kayaking, but it’s entirely a possibility.  All that said, I’m in sort of a lull.  I’m not sure what I’m interested in.

During the back half of the summer, my riding and running was severely off step.  I just wasn’t into it.  Even the commute to work was thrown off by the fact that I was not able to get out of be early enough to get things together and ride in.  Of course, things have picked up over the last week or so.   After having some work done to the bike, I’ve started setting my alarm so that I can get my ass out of bed and get to work.  On Friday I did a 26 mile ride to test out the new triple-chainring crank I just had installed (and summarily learned that I’ve lost some conditioning).  Sunday was kayaking in Monterey and yesterday I did mountain biking up at the Saratoga Gap (a place I have not been in almost 10 years).

I’m not sure the cause of this flurry of activity.  I was considering doing a ride today, but something told me that I should chill out a bit.

Part of that, I think might be the chronic injury that I have to my left Achilles.  I find that it’s fine when I’m good and lazy, but as soon as I do something (run, bike), it starts aching later that day (and gets worse the next morning).  I find this disturbing and somewhat irritating – it’s like my body likes it when I lie around and do nothing.  Hell, for that matter, I like it when I lie around and do nothing.  All of this running and biking and hiking and what have you is done in order to keep me in some sort of reasonable shape, so I can continue to eat and drink beer and not resemble an elephant seal.

Yes, folks – we now know the real reason why I subject myself to these things:  Vanity.   I’m vain.  In fact, I’m so vain, I probably think the song is about me, I’m so vain.

So, as you can see, it’s a bitch when the thing that I’m trying to keep looking somewhat good (my body) turns against me and prevents me from doing the things that help keep it looking good.

In addition to this, I’m fighting off a cold and bronchitis [which I learned after I had started writing this].  So not only are there mechanical issues, I also can’t get enough air in, anyhow.

What complete, utter bullshit.  Oh, well.  Time for a beer, I reckon.

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Completely Lazy…

Right, then…

I wish I had a really good excuse for laying off of running and riding.  But in the end, it was because of the weather.  For the past 6 weeks or so, we’ve been in “if it’s raining, it must be Monday” mode.  In and of itself, I don’t mind the rain, but it’s the constant changing weather that’s getting to me.  One day it’s 60F and cloudy, the next it’s 80F and sunny.  Then it’s down to 60F and cloudy.  I find it’s sapping my energy.  I stated earlier, that I have winter and summer modes – well, these days, I’m stuck in the middle.

All that aside, I’m happy to say that I’ve been trying.  Ran 9.5 mi on Sunday, biked to work on Weds, ran 7.16 mi yesterday and rode to Willow Glen and back this evening (just got back in fact).  To add to that, the 7.16 I ran on Thursday I PR’ed, averaging 9:02 miles, which, for me, is blazing.  Hopefully, I’m sliding back into the groove.

As for riding, coming home tonight, I experienced that quiet joy of riding at night.  Further, I had a couple of ports before leaving, so I had that fine, mellow high whist cruising home.  Always good.

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