Snowy January morning (that blob is a light-up polar bear)

In case you’re not on Twitter the picture above is what my front yard looked like this morning when I got up.

We got a lot of snow this weekend.  As I was shoveling, I thought, “I am so ready to be done with winter.  And it’s only January 3rd.”  Ugh.  When I took  Ruthie out this morning for her first walk of the day, I was wearing snow pants and in places the snow was up to my knees. I wish I could say I was kidding.  So it’s understandable that I waffled a bit about whether I should go to the gym today or get out there and run.

Well, I ran.  Just 4.5 miles, but that was enough.  Air temp was 24, with winds somewhere in the 19-20 mph range, so it felt more like 11, according to the Weather Channel app on my iPhone. (Love that app.)  I probably averaged something in the 10 minute speed range.  For me, running in those temps means 3 layers up top (warm base layer closest to the skin, dry-wicking long sleeve shirt over that, and then a warm fleece jacket on top.)  Only had my long tights on my legs, because I’ve found that sometimes two layers on the bottom can make me overheat.  Oh, and of course, I have to wear warm fleece gloves and a thermal fleece hat with flaps that cover my ears.  I find that if I wear the muffler around my neck, sometimes it just ends up making me more hot, and then I’ve got a sweaty wool thing around my neck that turns cold and wet in the cold.  Not a great feeling.

Today’s run was slow.  But I had my Stabilicers on (I cannot say enough good things about this product, and no, the company is not paying me  a cent to say that.)  So the run also became a good thigh workout.  The sidewalks were covered with snow and ice, so I paid a lot of attention to not falling and staying steady on my feet.  I also counted people clearing snow: 2 using snowblowers, 2 shoveling, 3 christmas trees sitting at the curb, looking very sad and lonely.

I also spent some time thinking about that guy, Dan Vassallo, who won our race on Friday.  His time for the 10K was 32 minutes flat. The guy who won the 5K did it in something like 17:17.  That means that even though he ran twice the distance, his mile per minute pace was still faster than the guy who won the shorter race.   Dan is from the same town as me. I want to see this local guy do really well. When he ran our town’s half marathon, he did it in something like 1:05.  Now, you may be thinking, “well, he has a long way, 5 whole minutes, to go before he can beat the likes of Ryan Hall.”  Yep, that’s true. But  let’s remember that Ryan Hall only runs for a living. That is his full-time job.  Dan doesn’t have the sponsorship that allows him to do that.  And he’s still running 5 minute miles. This guy is amazing.  Think about how fast your treadmill is moving when you put it up to 12.0.  Now think about running at that pace for about an hour. Puts it into perspective, huh?

I know this is usually the time of year that we set goals, running and otherwise.  I’ve not come up with my running goals yet, but when I do, I’ll let you know.  For right now, these are the things I want to focus on in my life:

  • Try to stay more positive at work and not let myself be dragged down by the cloud of negativity that has been over our heads for many weeks now.
  • Get writing every day. No excuses. Sort of like those folks who want to run at least one mile per day.  It may mean writing in a journal, or writing down my dreams that I remember from the night before, or writing down notes of conversations or observations I’ve had. Maybe responding to prompts.  But just doing it. Because you never know where it might lead.
  •  Clear out the clutter. In my head, in my life, at home and at work.  That way when of the day comes, I can leave with a clear conscience, and head home to what is important to me – my husband, and my animals. This will be a hard thing for me to do, but I need to let go of a lot of the small stuff, more so than I’ve already succeeded in doing.  This may require me saying “no” more often, in many ways.  (And if all else fails, watch an episode of Hoarders to re-scare myself straight where the physical clutter is concerned.) 
  • Keep up with fellow bloggers (and my own blog)  more regularly.   I learn a lot from others, and it’s good to see other writing styles too! 

That’s it for now.  One thing  I am going to change on this blog over the next week or so will be the Motivating Music page.  I’ve not been good at keeping up with re-posting videos for a long time now. So, I think I may have a new idea for that.  Stay tuned.

 I hope you like the new blog theme, by the way.  I think it looks “cleaner.”