JogBlog: Week 8, Day 2

December 23, 2009

Just a couple days until Christmas!

The weather was pretty nice this morning. The sun was out, the temperature was in the upper 30s. I rolled out of bed at about 8:30 and thought about when I might do my run today. I admit that there is a desire to blow off this week because of the holiday… I am definitely in a mode of “don’t ask, don’t tell” … you don’t ask me to do anything because I’m on vacation, and in return I don’t tell you where to go.

But I did want to do the run today, or at least try it. My last two runs have been less than inspiring, but I did complete them… and I didn’t want to break my streak of 8+ weeks of consecutive completed workouts! I’m stubborn and prideful like that.

I wore my regular running tights and a cold weather running shirt, tied my shoes and headed out. Today I had my iPod loaded with an updated song list… I changed last week’s list slightly in order to have 28 minutes of running music now. Got out of the car, stretched a little, turned on the music, and began my walk.

Warm-up song: “Walking on the Moon” by Sting. It’s almost exactly 5 minutes in length and so it serves me well as I’m getting started. I’m enjoying the sunshine and clear skies. My hands are cold, though, because I didn’t bring my gloves today (knowing I’d be hot by the end of the run). I tuck my fingers inside the little pockets that are built into the inside of my long sleeves. Who dreamed up these cool running shirts with the special pockets and the thumb holes and everything? I like them.

So Sting quits singing and I start jogging. I pass the Friendliest Stranger in the World in her pink puffy jacket, as she strolls along with another friend. She says good morning and happy holidays. I say thank you and the same to her. She really is friendly. And pink and puffy.

The first running song is “Come Sail Away” by Styx. I chose it because I like the song, and because it starts out slowly and then has more of a rhythm in the second half. So it works for me to start out slowly with my jogging, finding my pace and getting into a smoother rhythm after a couple minutes. Come sail away, come sail away, come sail away with meeeeee… Nice. Sometime when they are heading for the skies in their star ship, I’m huffing it up BNH.

Ahhh, BNH. It’s been a week since I’ve seen you, and I still hate you! But in a good way.

[Hey! Today I’m including a photo of BNH. I’m a little afraid to, because I don’t think the picture really gives you an idea of how challenging this little sucker can be. But here it is, in case any of you were wondering. It’s from the top looking down (opposite direction of how I was running) and I took it a couple days ago when I was walking my dog.]

As I crested the hill the first song was ending, and I knew that was about 6 minutes done! (Yes, I did check the lengths of all the songs as I put them on the play list, so I’d have a rough idea of where I’d be time-wise as each song ended. I’m like that.)

The second running song is “Still the One” by the Orleans. One of my all-time favorites! It starts out peppy and it stays peppy and it makes me feel peppy. Also, I love to sing along with it… but no way was I going to do that while I was running. But I enjoyed the song and let it move me along. I was in the best section of the track just then.

Hey, there’s the Friendly Stranger again. I’m in cruise mode now, although I know I’m still pretty slow. As I pass by I say that she must be marveling at how slowly I jog. She laughs and says something to the contrary as I continue on.

Next up on the song list: “Call Me The Breeze” by Lynyrd Skynyrd. Well now they call me the breeze… I keep blowin’ down the road… I ain’t got nobody… I don’t carry me no load… And even though I’m sure no one is actually calling me The Breeze, the song also does a good job of moving me along right when I first start to think about stopping to walk…

Yes, it happens every time. I can be going along fine and then something will hit me and I’ll start telling myself, “hey, you’ve gone X minutes already, why not take a break? Who ever said you have to be a runner? Just take a little break.” But I’ve found that if I ignore myself I can usually get through whatever rough spot I’ve hit and keep going. Just keep going.

I’m about 1 1/3 miles in, and I’ve guessed that my first mile pace was under 12 minutes, which is great for me. I’m about to start up BNH when “Dialogue Pts. 1 & 2” comes on, by Chicago. The lyrics on this one… well I’ve never really gotten them all straight before from just listening. But I love the beat of the song for jogging, and then when it gets near the end and they keep saying we can make it happen, yeah… we can make it happen… over and over, it serves as a nice pep talk when you are struggling a little.

I’m tired. But I’m on an easy part of the track, so I keep going.

“Taking Care of Business” by BTO is my penultimate run song today. If you ever get annoyed, look at me, I’m self-employed, I love to work at nothing all day. Yeah, I love the music but I’m also all about the lyrics 🙂

I see the Friendly Stranger again, this time she’s walking the same direction as me with a different companion. As I pass the 2-mile point in my run, I pass her and she says “you go girl!” and I laugh as I’m huffing and puffing and say that I’m just waiting for the music to stop so I can stop running! Which is simultaneously so true and so sad.

Now comes a big moment in my run today. I’m heading toward BNH again. Since the run is longer today, my 28 minutes would definitely take me up that monster one more time if I keep going. I’m not sure I’m in the mood. Things have gone relatively well so far… should I risk a major fizzle at the end of the run? Hmmm.

The last running song comes on: “Rockin’ Down the Highway” by the Doobie Brothers. I jog and I think. I get closer and I think. Can’t stop, and I can’t stop, gotta keep moving or I’ll lose my mind… whoaaaaa, rockin’ down the highway…..

So I get to a curve in the track just before BNH, and I turn around and jog back in the other direction. Call me a coward, or call me brilliant, but I’m going to finish without feeling nauseated today! Hooray for me. And, shame on me for not pushing it. I pass the Friendly Stranger one more time going the other way, and say “I just didn’t feel like doing that hill again” and she says she doesn’t blame me.

And I’m jogging along and I know I’m getting close, and wow, that song just sort of ends very abruptly! Da-da da da-da DUM. And you’re through. The end! Twenty-eight minutes are over.

Or… well I don’t want to brag or anything, but if you add up all the songs in my iTunes you would see that I actually jogged for 28 minutes and five seconds. So I earned extra credit!

As was the case with my jog at the end of last week, the cool-down song is “Too Hot” by Kool & the Gang. Which is fitting, since after that long run I am too hot to do anything but run (or walk) for shelter.

I make it back to my car, proud of finishing with relative ease after two lackluster workouts. I don’t know if I would have felt better or worse if I’d gone ahead and tackled BNH that one last time. I don’t care.

My last workout for Week 8 is scheduled to be on Christmas Day. I haven’t decided yet if I will actually run that day or if I’ll skip it and go on Saturday instead.

I guess it will depend on the weather… and  on whether I wake up feeling more like Santa Claus or like a reindeer that morning.

Merry Christmas!



  1. I have just started the couch to 5K. I have been reading your blog and its very inspiring. I have the same thoughts run through my head too. Thanks for the inspiration and I hope in 9 weeks I’ll be able to run a 5k too…

  2. Yeah Laura. I ran outside for the first time today, here in Alabama and it was soooooo hard. My parents live in an area with many slopes. My husband ran with me, we ran 25 minutes, just couldn’t do the 28, the hills killed me but I am counting it as day 2. I will wait to run next Monday or Tuesday for day 3 when I am back home to run on my treadmill. Have to say though that the time went so much quicker being outside. Merry christmas.

  3. Hooray! I am so happy YOU were happy with this run! I don’t blame you for not going up BNH a second time- I don’t think I would have done that either! I believe that in these nine weeks we work on our physical endurance, mental fortitude AND confidence as runners.
    Loved your playlist- btw, I also have BTO’s Taking Care of Business on my list- love the beat and the lyrics!

    Debby- good luck with the program. It’s challenging AND doable! Just take it easy and slow. And welcome!

    Celeste- glad you were able to run today with DH. I enjoy running with mine. I’m also glad you’re moving on to W8D3- it was a tougher run and besides, perfection is overrated!

    My run went well- I went through phases of hey I feel great to man how much time do I have left (ignored the voice @ these times!) to hey, I’m almost there- keep going!… You know the internal dialog thing we have whirling around in our heads.

    Merry Christmas my running buddies- and a Happy and Healthy New Year! Big group hug…

  4. Great job! As I was reading it, I was thinking that I would have just turned around and gone the other way at the end. Looks like great minds think alike!

  5. Laura – I”m going to steal your playlist – sounds inspiring! BTW, I can’t see the pic of BNH – is it still up?

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