Tag Archives: marathon running

One margarita, two cabernets…so much for the change of lifestyle

Well, so much for my Ayurvedic-inspired lifestyle change. It’s after 11:00 p.m. and here I am slightly pissed.

I can’t say I feel particularly guilty about it, though. I attended my first ever trail running class today, and it was fun! I’m used to road running, and have run three marathons, but nothing can beat trail running. Midwestern Man and I ran a 10K trail race this summer, and it was interesting how different a reaction we had to it. He found it boring and almost frightening because you have to watch out constantly that you don’t fall over rocks or trip on tree roots. This is exactly what I loved about it, though! I’ve very rarely experienced the so-called runner’s high by running on the road but I totally get into a zone when running on the trail. It’s precisely the risk factor which appeals – there’s no time to “ponder life’s complexities” (sorry, couldn’t resist a Morrissey quote) when you’re taking care not to break your ankle or are admiring the scenery.

Also, even though I know it’s not good for me, I do like the fact that the trail running group goes out for drinks afterwards. I joined a really hardcore running group this January, but I dropped out almost immediately because I just couldn’t deal with the anal retentiveness of the runners involved. All they did was sleep, eat, work and run. I tried to talk to them but every single conversation revolved around running. It didn’t seem healthy to me. This isn’t me. Despite all suggestions to the contrary on this blog, I love meeting people, and I get sad if I don’t. Trail runners have a reputation for endurance and socializing, so this suits me to the tee.

I found out tonight that one of the members of the “hard core” group ran a sub-3-hour marathon recently. This is very impressive for an amateur but, well, it’s still an amateur time, and he had given up his entire life for that! It just doesn’t seem worth making so many sacrifices for a sport which is essentially a hobby. I guess if it makes him happy, I shouldn’t judge but, still, it seems like an empty life to me. A self-indulgent, self-absorbed life, too, because, let’s face it, running is a very individualistic, solitary sport. I have met single-minded, obsessive people before but they’ve usually been artists or writers, and at least they’ve grown intellectually by focusing on their chosen field. Running, though? All you seem to be focusing on is your body.

On the other hand, it did occur to me that I reacted so strongly to this guy because, quite simply, I’m jealous of him. I’m not jealous of his speed because, well, if I trained hard enough I could be really fucking fast. I’m a natural runner, and if I really put my mind to it I could be great. But that’s just the problem, though…I don’t put my mind to it at all. And that’s why I’m jealous of him, because he does try hard and persevere. When I first met this guy, he really wasn’t a spectacular runner at all but now he’s fantastic. Sure, he must have some natural talent, but, ultimately, he succeeded because of sheer willpower, determination and hard work.

There are several things in my life which I could easily put more effort into because I’m good at them – singing, writing and running are the most obvious. And, on top of these main interests there are a zillion other less important things which interest me. There are people out there who are good at multi-tasking or who work at, and succeed in, several fields at once. I don’t succeed in anything! My focus is splintered off into too many areas all at once. I don’t really persevere in anything.

I do still think Mr Sub-3-hour-marathon is an empty shell of a person because running consumes him 24/7. But! But! But! I feel guilty for thinking badly of him because, ultimately, he can do what I can’t: stick at something and excel.

My main talent seems to be sitting on the sidelines to pooh-pooh the efforts of others, and telling myself that I could easily do better if I put my mind to it…without ever getting off my fat arse to try.


Little dog with a limp

running dog I’ve just come back from a run, and as I came in the gate of my house, a little dog with a limp ran past on the street. This is the third time I’ve seen this dog in the last ten days or so, which, given that it’s running about by itself at all hours without a collar, or an owner, would make you think that it’s a stray. I don’t think it is, though. It’s pretty fat and looks well-cared-for but, most importantly, it’s a dog with a fucking mission. You never see him idling away his time with sad, puppy-dog eyes, hoping some kind-hearted stranger will take him in. Oh no! He’s always running down the street, looking like he’s got somewhere very important to go. I’ve tried talking to him to see if he needs any help, but he always turns around, without even breaking stride, and gives me a “Whatever!” look. Hmmm.

My run was brilliant, especially because it’s been raining, and it’s so lovely and cool outside. When the weather is this mild, it’s like I’m floating through the air when I’m running. I used to go running late at night all the time, but this year I just got out of the habit. It’s probably a good thing, too, as it’s not good to get your body all psyched up at night when you should be trying to get ready for bed. If I could make myself go to bed earlier, I’d go running first thing in the morning, but I’m rarely able to do that. Whenever I have done it, I feel great, though! There is no better way to start the day than with a run. I always feel energized and invincible!

I have run three marathons, but I’m pretty bored of road running these days, and I have barely run at all this summer. I’ve decided to try something different, and so I’ve signed up for a trail running course that starts on Saturday. The goal is to train for a trail race early next year. There are three distance options (25K, 50K and 100K) and, since I’m a masochist and incredibly competitive, I want to do the longest one. I know I can do it. I love trail running. It’s so beautiful being out in nature instead of on some fucking boring suburban road. Trail runners are also more fun than marathon runners; for some reason, marathon runners are all white, over-privileged, Type A, obsessive, neurotic, control freaks with such empty lives that running becomes their everything; some trail runners can be like that, too, but for the most part they’re a bit grittier and don’t take themselves so seriously.

Today was much better than yesterday. It started off very badly with my noon session cancelling on me at the last minute. I cried onto my keyboard at this point because I just couldn’t have handled another day of sitting at home and making no money. Things did pick up later, however, and I saw two clients. They were even nice, which was such a relief, as I was depressed and couldn’t have faced dealing with any bullshit. The first one was a single dad with full-time custody of his kid. Apparently the mother is now a speed addict. Some people think guys who see sex workers are scum (and, well, some of them definitely have issues), but who can really blame a guy like this for his choices? Working full-time and then looking after his little girl, he probably barely has time to masturbate nevermind find some woman to date and have socially acceptable sex with! The second one was a pleasant but very dim-witted twenty-six-year-old who had apparently just dumped his fiancée in July even though they were supposed to be getting married at the start of September. He seemed very insouciant about this. He said his ex was a lazy bitch but couldn’t he have figured this out sooner instead of waiting until the last minute?! This guy was probably a complete arse, but he was so young and dumb that passing some moral judgement on his behaviour would be akin to passing moral judgement on a chimpanzee.

Ah, yes…feeling in a much better mood tonight. Why on earth did I stop running so much this summer?! I know it’s vital for my mental health.

So, you’ve heard of NaBloPoMo, but what about NaSexHaMo?

Readers from my old blog who have followed me over here are no doubt stunned at what a prolific writer I have become on “My Petrichor Past”. On the old blog, I’d be lucky if I wrote a post per week. Over here, however, my little fingers have been flying over the keyboard because of “National Blog Posting Month”, or “NaBloPoMo” as it is known more informally. The idea is that you have to post every day for a month.

Right now there is nothing I would rather be doing less than writing a blog post. I have terrible allergies and I would much prefer to be curled up on the sofa, sipping a nice piña colada (which, for some reason, I have been craving all day…God knows why, as I can’t even remember the last time I had one). I am feeling extremely uninspired and tired, but, nonetheless, I am going to post. This is precisely why I like NaBloPoMo – it makes me accountable. I’ve posted for the previous twelve days of September 2009, and it would be a damn shame to stop now. Also, I’m competitive as hell, and I can’t let all those other NaBloPoMo’ers beat me! It was the same thing when I was training for a marathon. I had to start training at 6:00 a.m. every Saturday morning, meaning that I’d have to get up at 4:30 a.m. (I could have got up later, I suppose, but I do so love having a nice leisurely breakfast in the morning). There’s no way in hell I’d ever have got up that early if I wasn’t training with other people, and didn’t have the prospect of kicking some ass.

Being so intensely competitive is probably not a very nice quality but can I say? I guess I must be a Type A personality. This is probably why I’m so unhappy being a sex worker. I suppose one could be incredibly ambitious about giving a great handjob but that has never been one of my goals in life!

However, I digress…

Earlier today, just after I had finished having sex with Midwestern Man, I was wondering what to write about for today’s post. I thought about how it can sometimes seem like a chore to write a post every day for NaBloPoMo; but then it occurred to me just how good it is to be forced to write something every day, even if it is usually some self-indulgent, self-pitying nonsense. What I’m writing about may not be great literature, but it is, nonetheless, writing. NaBloPoMo and blogging, in general, keep me connected to writing, and this is huge because I desperately need a creative outlet. They also keep me connected to the outside world, and help me “meet” other people (one of my new favourite bloggers, Terry, over at Bazookah Joe is someone I “met” on the NaBloPoMo site).

What I also like about NaBloPoMo is that it helps me get over my overly romantic notion of writing and creativity. So much of the reason why I’m not more creative is because I have always spent so much fucking time waiting for my bloody Muse to show up. It’s not sexy or exciting, but it’s helpful for me to think of writing like a chore or a job. The funny thing is that when I do that, I find myself getting inspired anyway!

As I was lying in bed with my husband having these thoughts, it occurred to me that we could perhaps use the NaBloPoMo model to stimulate my practically non-existent libido. You are probably thinking “huh?”, so let me explain. Well, I just said that I often don’t feel like blogging because I feel uninspired, but I do it anyway because of NaBloPoMo and end up with my fingers flying over the keyboard. What about if there was a NaSexHaMo (National Sex Having Month)? If I don’t feel like sex, I’d force myself to have it anyway every day, and perhaps end up really enjoying it and feeling closer to Midwestern Man (and, curiously, it does often happen like this!).

I think this sounds like a very interesting idea! Who cares to join me in the NaSexHaMo challenge?! Maybe we could even have our own website, documenting our successes! 🙂