mind over matter

i am SO  over running. no, seriously. really. after sunday’s soweto 10k, i am absolutely hanging up my running shoes.

i went to the track yesterday for the first time since the spar 10k. in fact i should have gone monday, but my schedule is such that i’m at work at the crack and back after dark. i have so little desire to do this that i decided not to set my alarm for yesterday, but to see if i woke up in time to go to the track before work.

in the morning i opened my eyes and rolled over to look at the clock. 05H58. urgh. did a quick bathroom run, then jumped back in bed. 06H20 and i was lying staring at the curtain.  i finally admitted defeat, got up and into my running gear and headed for the track.

07h00 – the track lay melting under a seeming-midday-sun. by the time i got to 5k’s, i was having to give myself a good talking to in order to keep going.

matter: damn, it’s hot, i’m not enjoying this. knee hurts. i can feel where i got that  blister last time. i know i can get through the race on sunday. i can just stop now.

mind: what?! what are you talking about? if you stop now, you’re a quitter! you’re not a quitter, come on! just finish this lap.

matter: ok, that’s 13 laps, i can stop now.

mind: no, don’t stop now! come on, just one more. and one more. and one more….

it’s all mind over matter. and i mind. i really do. i think i’m going back to dancing, cos i know some people feel like running is absolute zen. it’s where they find their bliss. not me. i start a run knowing that i’m going to have to have to do this for the next 45/50/60 minutes. and i do it even when it feels like more modern day torture.

for me the best part about running is once i’m done. and i don’t think that’a a good enough reason to do it.

though i am going to do it.  the soweto 10k, sunday november 2, 2008, 06h15. yup, that would be this sunday! wish me luck!

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hanging over

so thanks to face book, i find myself up at 6:15 on saturday morning in order to go and join some women i’ve never met, for a run. the person who’d facilitated the whole thing, i only discover when i get there, has gone out of town!

ok, let me back up here a minute. a few days ago, i notice a journalist who’d interviewed me for a magazine article, has updated her fb profile to say that she’s entering a race. i’ve been searching for running partners for ages with no luck, so i quickly get in touch with her. i promptly sign up for the race and she then hooks me up with the woman who’s organizing the run, which is how i’m out on the road at 7a.m. on a cold johannesburg morning. with said journalist nowhere in sight.

i discovered the local university of johannesburg track on my very first run in march, so this is my first time out on the road since that day. it starts out ok, but one of the ladies ups the pace (they run almost every day) so that we run 5k’s in about 31 minutes, which is about 5 minutes faster than i’ve been managing on the track lately, and i really feel it. we were going to try for 10k’s (yeah right!), but i feel like i’m pushing at the limit of my endurance and it doesn’t feel good. my toes hurt. i should be feeling all amped, getting ready for this race, but i actually feel somewhat discouraged. i’m been looking at my schedule for this coming week and i’ve got quite a lot of scenes, so i’m trying to plan my runs, but i’m not feeling very enthusiastic.

we plan on going out to a club called playground saturday night, in view of jon qwelane’s article last sunday, but my friend shirley cancels at the last minute, so my friend crys and i move the living room furniture and hoop up a storm. it feels sooo good. it’s been too long since i had a regular hoop practice. i used to hoop almost every day, but since i bought this house, i’ve slipped.

crys leaves for another engagement and her ex, simon comes over after breaking up with his rebound french girl. (i really dig simon and crys, so it’s sad that these days there’s a lot of negotiation as to when either or them is coming over. we have to make sure it’s not at the same time, so as not to cause any awkwardness – and invariably they come over on the same day! i think they’re beginning to be friends again, so hopefully we can all hang out together soon). anyway, si persuades us to go to a birthday party with him. i take some hoops as well as my psi-hoop and poi and do some more hooping while managing to get thoroughly plastered over the course of the evening. when we get home, we stay up till about 3, watching “fur” starring nicole kidman and i wake up with what feels like construction workers breaking down walls in my head.

no wonder i’m feeling out of sorts today.

the home stretch.

ok folks, it’s official. i am entrant #119409 in the National Women’s Day Totalsports Ladies Race 10km Run – August 9th, 8a.m.. i’m signed and paid up – now all i have to do is actually show up and do it!

unfortunately i can’t say that my running program’s been particularly successful lately. after i managed 8k’s i just couldn’t get it together to get to the track for 2 whole weeks. ok, so i did go to the gym in that time, but i didn’t manage to do any long runs. when i finally made it to the track yesterday, it was swarming with high-school kids and their trainers. it seems track season is upon us. it was a little distracting sharing the track – i’m so used to being alone in the inside lane and i had to stick to the third lane because of the sprinters.

it was a rather unspectacular outing. i think i must be getting used to running on the treadmill because i was having trouble with lower leg pain like i haven’t had since i first started at the track. i eventually only ran 5k’s at a dismal time of 36.08″, but then i did go to the salsa class at the gym immediately after.

can i just digress here for a moment and talk about breast pain? OMG! as i get older the monthly fluctuations in my cup size (and the accompanying pain!), just seems to get worse! i think it’s this bad this month because i’ve started eating chicken again and i’ve heard that lots of places use hormones in the feed, which means i may just have upped my estrogen intake as well. the pain got so unbearable, that even though i wore 2 sports bras in order to run on monday, i was forced to take 2 advil just so i could go to sleep that night. the irony is that since watching dr. 90210, i start thinking about how big my breasts are in terms of cc’s (a minimum of 500 this month)! scary!

anyway, today i did a quick 20 minutes on the treadmill (about 2.5k’s), part of which i walked because my premenstrual mammary glands were killing me with every step. i eventually tied my sweater around my chest just  so i could run for at least a little while.

i followed my run with an hour of tai-chi which was pretty cool. i used to attend classes here in johannesburg with beautiful, amazoniam liz van heerden, an excellent sifu who teaches both chen and yang style, but it got too difficult to get to class what with my studio schedule. now i occasionally catch a class at the gym. at least i’m starting to cross-train again. 

anyway, time to get serious! back to the couch to 10k plan. i can do this!

wish me luck!