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So, yeah, I'm now contemplating the strong possibility I won't be able to do the run on the 17th. Yes, I managed to get myself to the point of being able to run the half marathon distance once, but, without realizing it, I did myself some damage while doing so (I just learned all about overtraining... the hard way) and my body is currently in the process of telling me to fuck off, including letting me suffer this lovely bug I've managed to start suffering from Saturday afternoon. I was feeling better yesterday afternoon and did the P90X Kenpo workout, which should've been a solid, but not overly demanding workout. It left me completely drained. That's not good. Been feeling like crap since then. Meh.

I don't know if I'll be able to pull my body back together enough to do this run, if even moderate workouts are fucking with me, and an $80 entry fee sort of prohibits 'just giving it a try, anyhow'. Conventional wisdom says there's always next year, but I don't know if I'd be able to avoid the same conditions that led to overtraining this time, key amongst them: not being able to regularly get a solid 8 hours sleep after my workouts and doing Kung Fu on what should be my rest days. There's also the whole thing where I'm not looking forward to the entire sacrifice of time and effort that it took this time around, which cost me a lot in terms of time I would normally have spent doing extra training and conditioning for Kung Fu. (I'm also not pleased at the loss of kick flexibility, courtesy of some damaged and very tight thigh muscles.) To do it again, and this time properly, I'd pretty much have to give Kung Fu altogether. I'm not willing to do that, so, yeah, fuck.

the_vulture: (awesome)

21.2 km.

Yes, that's right; over the required 21.1 for a half marathon... about three weeks ahead of schedule. I'm half marathon race ready! This is a huge milestone for me in terms of my physical fitness.

Needless to say, I'm quite chuffed.  :D

the_vulture: (awesome)
Feck it. I did 17.5 km anyway. How are you spending your New Year's Eve? :)
the_vulture: (awesome)
Today was my long run day and I did MUCH better than last Monday. Whilst I still completed the 10 km I had set out to achieve that Monday, I didn't get much beyond that. This was disappointing, as I had hoped surpass my personal best for running distance, an achievement I described in this entry.

Today, however, I surpassed that distance by a kilometre, for a total of 13! Furthermore, the time for my last personal best distance, 12 km, was achieved at under 1 hour 43 minutes, shaving a whopping 17 minutes off my time for that distance!

More details and PICTURES! )

the_vulture: (tvhead)
So, I'll start off with the scary news I got last month. My doctor really didn't like my blood sugar level from the last set of tests. She's scheduled me to do another test in November to see if I have diabetes. That's... not happy. Granted, I know my father tends to have a high blood sugar level and I've probably inherited that from him, but, after all the exercising and such I do, I feel like my body has betrayed me. Not fun. The doctor told me not to beat myself up about it, but she did suggest I do what I can lose more weight, specifically to exercise even more than I do already.


So, I finally bought a new pair of badly needed running shoes and I've redoubled my efforts in running, literally. Over the last couple of weeks, I've taken to doing two of the running workouts that the miCoach app spits at me for the 5k race plan I'm doing. This week, I've run over 25k. That's my new weekly goal: 25km. In this week alone, I've seen some really good progress: I've dropped around 4lbs and my blood pressure has improved a lot. I'm also feeling a lot better. 

Another thing that will help is finally switching back to a day schedule, with Sundays and Mondays off, even. Aside from just being easier on my system and giving me my evenings back to socialize and such, I'll also go back to two nights a week of Kung Fu. (Yay!) The (re-)added workout is going to really help. 

So, yeah, between all of that, I'm going to be putting in a lot of work on my physical health between now and November. I'm feeling cautiously optimistic about it all, but, yeah, still scary.

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I just went back through my posts tagged 'running' and not only did all that Kung Fu jump start me back into 10K race ready, but I just blew past my previous recorded personal bests for longest distance ran and longest continual running time by approximately 0.45 miles and 28 minutes, respectively. I just did the best run of my life!

Holy crap!  O.O
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... they have been fully and utterly dispelled. Tonight, despite being the heaviest I've been in about five years and not having done any serious run training for several months, I just completed a 2 hour run that covered over 7.4 miles, nonstop.

Yes, that's right boys and girls, for the first time in over three years,
I am once again, 10K Race-fracking-READY!!! 


Inspired by... )

PS: There were fireflies all along the marsh trail. Hee!
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As my fortieth birthday approaches (currently with the speed of a freight train), I've been strongly contemplating reaffirming my committment to spiritual growth through some form of ordeal or challenge. From what I've seen challenges and ordeals, they are often utilized for a number of purposes, such as a rite of passage, a confirmation of faith, and altering one's state of consciousness, sometimes even all three at once. An ordeal, as the name implies, involves an extremely challenging trial that often features enduring pain, deprivation, physical exertion, psychological challenge, or combinations thereof. Often, the ordeal also involves extreme risk.

The rest beneath the cut. But please read 'cause I kinda need help with this. )
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Yesterday, I did another run, which is good. It's been a while since I've been running. I had to push to finish a half hour run, though; I've gotten soft. I also discovered that I need ice cleats. I took a fall, but landed with a damn near textbook breakfall. I was actually surprised by how pain and injury free that fall was, despite landing on ice and pave. Seriously! I've taken harder falls on rubber training mats. I simply just got up and kept on running. I might not be so luck next time, though, so I'd better invest in some traction.

In other news, my holidays finally got sorted out. I'll actually have 9 days off, allowing me to spend Christmas with my relatives. This is a good thing for me. :) My only stress now is waiting for my next paycheque so I can afford to mail stuff overseas. I've got most of my shopping done, but sending it off is a wee problematic at the mo'. *sheepish grin*

Other'n that, nothing really new or exciting going on.
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I will sleep well tonight... *tired chuckle*

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I've been eagerly awaiting the release of "The Watchmen" on DVD whilst lamenting the fact that I had missed it in the theatres. My cousin just called and asked me if I wanted to go see a film. It was then that it was revealed that "The Watchmen" has been making a return appearance to one of the theatres! I'm gonna go see "The Watchmen" on the Big Screen afterall! Yay!!!!!

In other news, the back is healing. I may begin running again sometimes this week. I tried a short fifteen minute run last week, but was rewarded only by a massive ache/cramp in my side that wouldn't release for the entire freakin' evening! ARGH!!! I did set back the healing a wee bit this afternoon, I rode over to the local liquor store and biked home with a somewhat burdensome backpack of boozy bounty. 'Twas a worthy sacrifice, however! A previously empty liquor larder is now stocked with some Peach Schnapps, Disaronno and *dreamy sigh* a bottle of good ole' Cap' Morgan's Spiced Rum. The can of Gaymer's cider (too sweet for my liking) and the single serving bottle of Smirnoff's (so that I have something to compare to when I finally crack open that bottle of Crystal Head Vodka my brother gave me for my birthday) have already been consumed.

Speaking of crystal heads, I finally got to watch "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull". I was surprised by just how entertaining that film. Sure, it was formulaic, but, damn, what a good formula!

Other than that, life is reasonable.

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In the interest of building relationships with my new spiritual community, I held a didgeridoo workshop on Tuesday last night. I gave instructions how to create a drone, how to practice circular breathing for non-stop didge playing, how to create various sound effects, and various cultural aspects and history of the instrument. Attendance wasn't quite what I was hoping for, but those who showed up seemed to have had a great time and got a lot of out of it. So, in all, for my first workshop outside of a school environment, I'll call it a success.

In other news, I seem to be getting my sorry butt back into shape. I've done two weapons workouts and a three mile run this week, so it seems like I'm getting back on track. I desperately need to be, too, as I've been getting a little rounder than I'm comfortable with, as of late. *sheepish grin*

Finally, I managed to get in to a tax kiosk to get my return done, pretty much on the last day I could have. *chuckle* I expect to get a pretty hefty return of over $2000. Yay me!


Mar. 6th, 2009 07:08 pm
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Lots and lots of PAIN!

Last week was spent with a spiteful back. The week before, I was feeling perky, and even got a couple of runs in. The ache started with the first run, but was okay enough that I got in a run on Saturday (go ME!). Then on Sunday, I got a nasty twinge whilst moving some firewood and another the day after when I slipped a bit on some ice. It was bad enough that I called in sick at work on Tuesday (okay, okay, the fact that D. and daughter were over as well (stranded by ice pellet storm) also provided some incentive...). Thankfully, the ache has diminished substantially and I wager I should be okay by the end of the weekend.

Meanwhile, aside from my dorsal dilemma, life has been good. The beginning of the week was spent in happy company and the rest is going by fast. I am, however, starting to lose faith in humanity. There are just too many stupid people buying Blackberries when they really, really shouldn't.
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Well, I've resumed running and sword training this week, though my muscles seem to be unhappy about all that. Methinks I may not be getting enough calcium, as my legs, calves in particular, have been crampy since Wednesday (Haidong Gumdo class). I picked some calcium supplements, as well as a glucosamine sulphate cocktail to help my joints hold up under the abuse, so I'll see how that goes.

Meanwhile, I'm getting odds and sods done around the flat, including picking up a pine board shelving kit from which I created a small table for my lap top and my new altar (finally!). I'm not so happy with the furniture additions, as the pine turned out to be really crappy wood that I paid far too much for, but one makes do with one has. I can always replace 'em later when the opportunity presents itself.

I've also replanted the tomato plant that my mother gave me. It sits in the window sill in a planter designed to fit nicely into a corner. Between that and the two plants I'm looking after for my mother (a small aloe vera plant and the tall whatever-the-heck-it-is that
[personal profile] 1grl_revolution gave her), my flat is actually looking rather green.

I've also begun rearranging my meager bits of furniture so now my flat looks a bit less 'bachelor'. *grin*

Saturday was fairly productive in that I managed to get up early enough to go to the market, chat with a new friend, pick up a substantial amount of cider (some of which, if it was just a bit more sparkly, would be a damn good match for my beloved Scrumpy Jack), did another Haidong Gumdo lesson, and then went off to work.

Finally, this week I've also repaired my didgebox, after it got a hole knocked into it during the move. I'm actually considering hosting an introductory didjeridoo workshop for the group of pagan contacts I've recently made, though, if it happens, it'll be a little later in the future. I'd have to acquire some decent bits of pvc from which to contstruct some cheap didges from. It would certainly be a fun excuse for a party! *grin*

My current conundrum involves the upcoming shift bid, where I'm thinking of trying for some regular day-like hours. It would be nice to actually have my evenings free to pursue my budding social life, as well as get in more martial arts, but that would also knock off about $160 per month that I normally earn in shift premiums for working late nights. Yep, it again comes down to money versus quality of life. 'Course, recent experience suggests that going with QoL may be a good idea.

And my shift has just ended! Later, gators!

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... but I did my first 3.5 mile run since buggering up my back two weeks ago. The back muscles themselves acted up a wee bit towards the end, but, aside from being slower than usual, the run went well. Yesterday evening, I was somewhat concerned that my back might not be fully up to a run, as my left side, just above my hip, was aching. Of course, that was just muscles getting pissed off for having to compensate for other muscles that got pissed off compensating for the original injury (lower back, just right of the spine) in the first place.

In other news, I'm applying for a post as an Acting Trainer at my new workplace. I'm still in probation and, as such, technically not supposed to be allowed to do that, but, as they've extended the deadline for applying, I'm guessing they might just make an exception in my case.

And now to continue on with what I hope to be a productive day...
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I'm such a bad boy! *chuckle*

Today I did the Run for the Cure. I was quite pleased with my time for 5k (3.1 miles), which was 32 minutes 4 seconds. That put me at 10 min 31 secs per mile, a big improvement over the just under 12 minutes per mile I used to be at about this time last year.

The event was well attended. It was certainly a festive atmosphere with many guest speakers, a high energy warm up, and a rock band greeting runners as they finished their run. But beyond all this was the beauty of the path itself. I had been looking forward to this run, in part, because it would be a great opportunity to check out a park I hadn't yet been to. Fall had blessed the scene with a glorious dressing of reds, oranges and yellows. The path itself wound through beautiful woodlands and criss crossed a cheerful creek. The run was an absolute delight! I can't believe I've only just recently discovered this park, let alone explore its beauty!

You'll have to forgive the quality of the pics. Not only was I taking them on the run (literally), but, alas, the camera on my Nokia sucks rather harshly in that it has poor photo quality and it's way too damn easy to get one's finger in the way (hence the cropping).

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For the last several days, I've been finding that my muscles have been a lot more sore for a lot longer than they should've been, especially the legs, which have done a LOT more work in the past than they're doing currently. It occurred to me that I've haven't been eating anywhere as much protein than I have in the past, especially when I was doing more rigorous training.

I began remedying that by eating an entire tin of flaked ham with a can of tomato, bean and pasta soup I had last night (it was very yummm!) and continued by picking up a large container of whey isolate protein powder shake mix. Yes, I did talk to the clerk about which would best suit my needs and I'm satisfied with her explanation of why this stuff is going for me.

On her advice, I drank a shake about twenty minutes before I head out for Haidong Gumdo class (well, was supposed to be half an hour, but oh well...). I ran to class, as I was running late (err... bad pun, sorry), enjoyed a reasonable workout there, and then, 'cause I was feeling good, ran back home (about a mile, methinks). So far, no muscle ache! (Yay!) Granted, my limbs were beat ass tired by the end of it, but they weren't sore. Furthermore, I didn't have any trace of the ache in my right knee that's been plaguing me the last week or so (silly Runner's Knee).

Yes, I must be certain to give my protein intake a LOT more consideration.

PS: I saw a couple class members testing for yellow belt; I reckon it won't take very long for me to achieve the same. Some of the upper level stuff, though? That looks just plain WICKED!!! Can't wait to learn it!
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I've finally decided that I'm going to do it, I'm going to participate in the Run for the Cure. I've got a lot of female friends and family that I should be looking out for, so it's time to put those legs o' mine to useful labour. It's been a little touch and go in making that decision as, at first, I wasn't sure that my work schedule would allow for it and, more recently, I wasn't even sure I would be able to afford the registeration fee (as well as the $20 or so that it may take me to take a cab to the run site and back), But I've discovered that the run itself will occur early enough in the afternoon for me to complete it, cab home, shower and get ready in time for my evening shift. As for the registeration fee, I'll avoid a potential cash crunch (the account is hitting a serious, if temporary, low this week) by registering on Friday, which happens to be Job Satisfaction Day. That won't leave a lot of time for me to have my donation site up, but I wasn't expecting to raise many funds anyhow (though it did occur to me to offer a pic o' me gorgeous legs to anyone who donated).

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I must make a better effort to keep up with my blog. It gets to be a bit difficult, though, as my leisure time is somewhat limited and often taken up by other pursuits. Alas...

On my way at about 2 in the morning last Tuesday, I had a bit of a disturbing encounter with some of the local thuggery. As I was walking along the street nearing home, a jeep full of young men turned around the corner from the opposite side of the sheet. They swiftly pulled to a stop just ahead of me, after having accelerated through the turn. I continued walking along, though I strongly suspected I was the object of their attention, for a number of reasons; first, they have simply wanted some information, like directions. Second, if their intentions were not so benign, showing fear by stopping or altering travel is a mistake. Third, if it was to come to a physical confrontation, the jeep would have served as a good tactical obstruction by which to limit how many of the little boogers could come at me at once. (Crikey! With that level of paranoia and continuous risk evaluation, you'd think I'd grown up in some crime ridden ghetto.)

There were five young men in the jeep, maybe in their late teens or early twenties. Fortunately, all of them looked like I could drop them in one solid hit. And perhaps that's why, when I finally got fairly close to the vehicle, they peeled away, with but a singular, violent throwing motion (hardly threatening as the passenger window was rolled up) and a menacing sneer from the driver. 'Course, slightly annoyed look I was probably sporting at the time might also have had something to do with it. As mentioned earlier, thugs of this nature prefer a fearful nature and it was actually kinda hard to be fearful of this lot, even if there was five of them.

Still, when I got home, I phoned the event in to the local police. These little hoodlums may have had second thoughts about picking a fight with me, but I have smaller and female colleagues at work, some of whom I knew would be walking these streets mere hours from the point this occurance. That's aside from any other unfortunate member of the public who might've ran afoul of them. In most cases, I'd be skeptical if the cops would do anything about it, but these local ones actually seem to maintain a pretty active presence, as demonstrated on Saturday, so perhaps something good came of that call.

In other news, I've racked up a bit of a bonus by working a day of overtime yesterday. Yeah, I'll be working a six day week, but, honestly?, that's not at all that taxing. The only issue is squeezing in time to get other stuff sorted in my off hours. Today, for example, I took a bike ride out to a local charity used goods warehouse to check into possible furniture for my flat. Sadly, that seemed to be nigh a wasted effort as they were charging quite a bit for what was quite slim pickings. I'm better off shopping for stuff at Walmart and Zellers. This was especially disappointing because I really wanted to pick up something I could use as an altar (I've been feeling somewhat spiritually amiss) and it was over an hour's worth of time I could have devoted to other things. I at least, however, came home with a rice cooker/veggie steamer in reasonable condition for a mere four dollars.

I also got a bit of exercise on the bike, which helped clear out the lactic acid burn from yesterday's run. It was a pleasant enough run that took me through a lovely marsh and allowed me to soak up a luxurious amount of sunshine. Sadly, though, my nipples got chafed (owie!) and, alas, there was no one about to kiss them better for me. *melodramatic sigh*
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Well, at least the foot path, anyhow. Yep, I resumed my training again with a 40 minute run. That was pretty much the highlight of my day. The rest of it was spent either doing laundry or working. Wow, my life is currently as exciting as a slug in slow motion.*chuckle*


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