November 2001

(Going way back in my archives and finally moving some stuff from November 2001 to my blog from the HTML file it was in before.)

Thursday, 1 November 2001

Nothing to say today, but I can’t start the month without an entry, can I? No way! Oh wait – I did get some new socks at K-Mart yesterday. That was exciting, in a sad, pathetic way, because I’ve been looking for another pair or two of socks like the ones I got a few months ago – they’re CoolMax and Lycra, so they don’t squish around in my shoe like cotton ones do, and they have ribbing around the arch which I like – it just makes them feel more secure. And, it was doubly exciting because they were only $4.50 for two pairs. And, wait, triply exciting, because they were women’s socks for big feet, which I have. What wasn’t exciting was that I got the last pack, so who knows if I’ll ever find them again.

Woah! That was exciting, huh?

Non running-related, mostly: Lucky Ren is going to New York this weekend to see the Chemical Brothers with Kristie and the Boston girls and her cousin. I’m insanely jealous. If I had gone (wish I had thought of this before two seconds ago, dumb Pam!) not only would I have gotten to see the boys, but I could have watched the NYC Marathon! Sheeeesh!!!! Come to think of it, I can’t believe Ren got such cheap tickets, considering…lucky! (BTW, in 1998, Kristie, Ren, and I got to meet the Chemical Brothers when they played in New Orleans. That’s why I’m jealous. And that’s why I can call them “the boys.” Tee hee.

Monday, 5 November 2001

What a weekend. Lots happened, no running though. My foot still hurts. Boo hoo! I want to run again! I wish there was something I could do to make it better, but aside from icing, really, what is there? (Yes, yes, rest and compression, blah blah blah…)

So Saturday morning, Chris (my London running partner who is running the Disney marathon as his first in January) ran the Baton Rouge Beach half-marathon, and I went to Baton Rouge to watch him finish. Yay! That was exciting and got me psyched up for the marathon. Everyone who I saw finish, though, was really fast (Chris finished in 1:43) and we left before the runners who are as slow as me got to the finish line, so I didn’t get to see any fellow slowpokes. But it was still cool.

Then I went back to New Orleans that afternoon, and when I was online, I noticed that plane tickets from New Orleans to London (roundtrip) were only $195!!! That is insanely, crazily, fantastically low. But it wasn’t until later that night that I tried to get two tickets for me and Kristina (as her graduation present from me) and the fares had gone up to $425 or something. 😦 I was very sad. Now I’m determined to get really cheap tickets to London for us, through Priceline or something. We want to go the first week in January, before Kristina starts school again. It would be a perfect birthday present for meeeee! But, I know the money would be better spent elsewhere, but I’m sorry, I just can’t resist $200 plane tickets to London. No way.

The other thing that happened was I got pulled over by a police officer on the way to a work function, and I got 5 citations! Arrrgh! Fortunately, none were moving violations, all were because I didn’t change my address on my driver’s license when I moved. Just what I need! Yippee! So this morning, I had to sort all that out, getting a new driver’s license and registration and such. Bleeeccccch.

Wednesday, 7 November 2001

Still can’t run. Foot still hurts. Not as bad, seems to be improving a little. On the other hand, everything to do with my car is going wrong. Nothing’s wrong with my car, at least, but I failed inspection yesterday because (this kills me. this is why New Orleans is corrupt) my windshield wiper blades were too short! Can you beat that? And I had them installed at the Ford dealership, so why would they be? And of course the Ford dealership is giving me trouble now about it. Arrrgh! What a pain! As if I can afford this?

Not to mention, Isabel (my cat, her real name) is sick or something. Her hair is falling out. So I have to take her to the vet today. Poor baby. I don’t mind spending money making her better, but for ridiculous things like new windshield wiper blades? Don’t get me started! Don’t even get me started! (sorry, possibly obscure SNL reference.)

I think I can run tomorrow. I want tooooooo! Until this enforced two week break from running, I didn’t realize how much my self-esteem and self-confidence relies now on getting out and exercising. Need to get started again!

Thursday, 8 November 2001

Foot hurting slightly less. Am planning on running Sunday. Yes!

Friday, 9 November 2001

Much less pain, even when barefoot. Yay! Still planning on a Sunday run. Aaaaannnnddddd….

I got tickets to see Harry Potter next Friday night! Yay!!! Ack! So excited! I thought it’d be sold out already, but it wasn’t! Yay! Yay! Yay! I can’t wait!!! And then Saturday night, mom’s new sugar daddy (I’m sorry, I can’t refer to him as a “boyfriend” if he’s in his 70’s and he’s rich, can I?) is taking me and Kristina (and mom, naturally) to Commander’s Palace, the nicest restaurant in New Orleans, and that’s really saying something. Must run on Saturday to work off the meal ahead of time! That’s going to be a really fun weekend.

Monday, 12 November 2001

I can’t believe there’s been another plane crash in NYC. Let’s just pray that it was only an accident.

Now on to the good news: I ran yesterday! And my foot didn’t hurt! It’s still a little sore when I’m barefoot, but since it’s hardly as if I run barefoot, I think I’ll be okay. Seriously, I couldn’t even tell that I’d ever hurt it. Just to be on the safe side, though, I’m not running today, but am going to start running again regularly tomorrow morning. Yay! So happy! It was a really nice run, too. We had to return a video to Blockbuster, which is about 2/3 of a mile away, and we ran the whole way there, pretty fast. I think our sense of pace has been thrown out of whack, but maybe this was just what I needed to go a little faster. We walked back home from the Blockbuster, so it wasn’t a huge workout, but considering we haven’t done anything in two and a half weeks, I’m very proud of us.

I think tomorrow we’ll go to the park. I miss the park.

Tuesday, 13 November 2001

Ok, so the plane crash was probably an accident. That’s good.

And today we went to the park. Yay! And we went the whole 30 minutes, barely a problem. The only thing was, I felt like we were going faster than normal, but it still took us 24:16 to go once around the park, 1.77 miles. That makes our pace still like 13:40 or something obscene. Ooooh – I know. Maybe my stopwatch is slow. Suuuuure. Maybe the park is really 2.77 miles around. Wouldn’t that be nice? Yeeeeeah, I don’t think so. I just can’t understand that. That’s even slower than normal. I mean, at some points, we did go really slowly, but at others, we sped up for a little while. Hmmm. I know I go on and on to Kristina that speed isn’t important, and I really am not all that concerned about it, but at this rate, it’ll take me 6 hours, almost exactly to finish the marathon. Woah, wait. That’s not too bad, is it? (I was thinking it would be over 8 hours or something, so 6 seems like breeze, comparably.) And the book I’m using for training stresses that I shouldn’t be concerned about time, not at all, but then I read that the London Marathon course closes in 5 hours. How is that? I know that 40,000 people don’t finish in 5 hours. Hmmmm. Well, anyway, maybe I’ll just get faster naturally. I shouldn’t think about it. I’m not going to think about it. Not yet.

Wednesday, 14 November 2001

Okay, am no longer going to be worried about my speed. In fact, what I really need to focus on is keeping a slow, consistent (read: sustainable) pace. From now until the end of the year or so, I’ll be running on Mondays and Wednesdays alone. Kristina has class at 8:30 on those days, so instead of both of us getting up really early, I’ll just get up at 6:45 like every other morning and go alone. The problem here is that without someone to talk to, I have a hard time judging my pace (the conversational test works quite well for me, but I’m not about to start talking to the squirrels in the park, thank you.) At least until I get a heart rate monitor. And I know that the bulk of my marathon training will be alone (Kristina did agree to do the shorter weekday runs with me, but the long weekend runs are all me) so I have to figure this out. I’m hoping it’ll be easier with a heart rate monitor. Nice, solid numbers.

All in all, though I was disappointed with this morning’s run, it wasn’t a complete waste of time. I overslept this morning. (I have my alarm clock set to NPR, and this morning all I got was some clicky noises that didn’t wake me up. Generally, I prefer waking up to the newscasters voices, but occasionally, the alarm will go off while they’re relating some particularly bad news, which, after I hit the snooze button, I incorporate into a dream. Like once, there was a shooting somewhere. That was unpleasant. But anyway, off the subject. My alarm didn’t go off.)

So anyway, I overslept until 7:15, didn’t get to the park until 7:30, and finished my half hour at 8 on the dot, which is getting late, as I have to be at work at 9. Otherwise, I would have gone around the park twice, and felt better about the whole mess. Oh yeah, it was a mess because I ran 10 minutes, walked a minute or so, ran 5 minutes, walked a few minutes, ran a few minutes, walked a few minutes. I know I can run 30 minutes. Heck, I know I can run 40 minutes! So why can I not do it alone? Arrrgh! I know it’s all in my mind. Must work on that.

Thursday, 15 November 2001

I wish I had written this yesterday, when I was in a giddy, elated mood, because now my mood has leveled out and I can’t bring myself to sound as happy as I was yesterday evening. Nothing to do with running, all about work, actually. But my website (the one I started within our company) is finally picking up and doing lots of business. We’ve been selling Christmas crackers like there’s no tomorrow, and in addition, I found out that this newspaper in California for British expats is going to write an article about us! Yay! So exciting! Success at last! Ha ha. I hope so! This business is my ticket to England, I hope. Somehow. But we didn’t get any orders overnight, so I’m a little puzzled and sad about that. Doesn’t make sense.

Running-wise, it’s been a good day at least. We went to the park, but decided to run around the fly instead, for a change of pace. It’s nice there, but it’s enclosed by train tracks, so once you get into the area, if a long train comes, you’re stuck. Fortunately, there wasn’t one today, but we sprinted past the tracks because we thought we heard one coming. 25 minutes into our run, that was pretty tough. 😀 And we ran for 31 minutes today. A bit of improvement! Tee hee. I think pretty soon I want to change my focus from 30 minutes to 3 miles. I think that would be better. Since that’s what I’ll be starting out in my training. (Starting in 5 1/2 weeks! Ack!)

Friday, 16 November 2001

Harry Potter tonight! Harry Potter tonight! Yay! I can’t wait! In less than 12 hours! Yay! I can’t believe how crazy everyone has become about Harry Potter. It’s madness! Tee hee. Wish I had some kids to take with me, I think that would be fun. But there’ll be plenty in the theater, no doubt.

Good run this morning. Yesterday I wasn’t planning on running this morning, wanted to take a rest day, but last night I decided I wanted to. It was a good run. We ran around the neighborhood instead of the park. Nothing particularly exciting to say about the run, but I’m glad we did it after all. I’ll definitely rest tomorrow, because my foot was aching a little and my shins weren’t feeling great. I know I didn’t stretch very well before we started and I’ve already learned that I need to do that from when I had shin splints this summer.

I am starting to feel really bad that I’m not specifically supporting a charity for the marathon. I know I don’t have to, since I’m not running for a charity, but I want to. I’d still like to do something to do with Leukemia for Paula’s little girl, or St. Jude’s Hospital or the Ronald McDonald House or something. But then again, I’d also like to do something in my dad’s memory for the American Heart Association. (Hmmm. Is it wrong to run for American charities in London? I suppose not, eh?) I just need to decide something, especially before the holidays so I can hit my family up for money at Christmas dinner and such. But do I contact the charities and tell them? I have no idea how to go about fundraising, especially because if I do, it won’t be for any officially sanctioned fundraising drive. I suppose I will just contact some people at the charities and ask them. Yes, I will do that.

UPDATE: 2:34 p.m. Got my official entry form! Yay! Exciting! Now, I just need the plane fares to drop to about $400, and I’ll be set! Yay!

Monday, 19 November 2001

What a nice weekend I had! Not stressful, got lots of free stuff, had a great run, nice weather…what more can you ask for? Friday night, we went to see Harry Potter. Oh my gosh, what a wonderful movie! I know that some critics complained that it was too much like the books, but I won’t gripe about that! I was so giddy at the beginning that it was all I could do not to laugh out loud. This little girl (about 8 years old) was sitting next to me, and every time I laughed or gasped or made any noise she just turned and stared at me. Like, what is this woman doing? It was funny. But it was fantastic, and I can’t wait to see it again. Yay!

Then on Saturday, Kristina and I went to the mall and ended up getting lots of free stuff, including some tickets to the Nutcracker on Ice. Ha ha! Should be fun. Then, our delicious dinner at Commander’s Palace and then on Sunday, we got free tickets to the Saints game from Kristina’s boss so we went to that (I’m not much of a football fan, so I wouldn’t say I was as excited as Kristina, but it was fun anyway. And we had really good seats.) And then my run (I suppose the only thing I should be writing about here) was really good too…

As I’ve complained about in the past, I have had trouble pacing myself when I run alone. I end up going too fast, then burning out early and walking too much and getting frustrated with myself, etc, etc. Well, yesterday, I finally had a good solo run. A great solo run. Kristina didn’t feel like running, so I went to the park at around 4:30 p.m. It was cool (it still hasn’t gotten cold here in Louisiana, so it was shorts and tank top weather) and it was just a nice afternoon. I had my walkman on, with a Beatles tape in (which is my favorite running music) and just went out slow. I paid attention if I started to get out of breath or if it seemed as if I was going faster than normal, and when I did, I slowed down. It was good. By the time I was ready to stop, it was getting darkish outside, so I stopped – after 33 minutes! I was very happy about that, because not only is it further than Kristina and I generally go, it was solo! So all in all, a very nice run. I was very pleased. Yay!

Tuesday, 20 November 2001

Finally, it’s getting cold! Well, ok, at least it’s starting to feel like late fall instead of early summer. This morning, I was excited that it was gray outside, instead of the usual blue, cloudless skies. Yikes. I think there’s something sick about that.

Last night, Kristina went out with some of our friends, and though I would have liked to (Anne was in town, she of the sick father) I knew if I stayed out until midnight, and even had one or two beers, there’s no way I would have gotten up to go running. Although I became lame and boring (according to Kristina) a long time ago, it’s still hard for me to believe I’d rather go running at 7 a.m. than go out with my friends. Hmmm.

But it was a good run, another solo one. Went to the park, ran 3/4 of the way around the park, then turned around, just for a change of pace. Ended up running for 34 minutes, but I did stop a few times (I stopped my stopwatch whenever I stopped) to stretch (were there too many “stop”s in that sentence?) which I think helped. I’m now convinced that the Beatles is my ideal running music. I had a really strong finish with “Roll Over Beethoven.” Ha ha. Oooh, I really want one of those iPods from Apple for Christmas. Or, if I win the lottery. I should play the lottery first. Wish i had $400 to spend on one, they are so *@#(&@* cool!

My shin was aching a little at the end…I may take tomorrow off. But then again, Thursday is Thanksgiving, I think it’s best to burn as many calories as possible before Thursday. And since Kristina doesn’t have school tomorrow, maybe she’ll want to go to the levee tomorrow morning. That might be fun. (Fun? Fun??? What has happened to me???)

Wednesday, 21 November 2001

Okay, I take back what I said yesterday about being lame and boring. Well, let me revise it. I like being lame and boring, after last night. Or how I feel this morning. Well, Anne passed the bar! And we had to celebrate, didn’t we??? (I have no regrets about being hungover this morning, it was fun. Just don’t want to do it often.)

Suffice it to say I did not run this morning. But I will tomorrow morning.

Sunday, 25 November 2001

I have decided that Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Not because of the food (which, admittedly is very good, but only makes me feel ill afterwards) but because it’s the only holiday where you get a long weekend and the holiday is at the beginning, not the end. Most holidays you spend all of your time off before the big day, preparing for it, and then you need another vacation after the holiday. Christmas and Easter are two prime examples of this. But Thanksgiving Day is the first day of your holiday, and then you have a really long weekend after that. Lovely.

Thursday morning, while my mom baked her pies and make her oyster dressing (mmmmm…) Kristina and I went for a run in my old neighborhood. After my dad died, Kristina came to live with me and my mom (for which I will be forever grateful to Kristina for, and one reason she will always be my very best friend on earth) and helped me to take care of my mom (in an emotionally supportive way.) We lived in the house my dad died in, which my mom has since moved out of. But the neighborhood we lived in was far more conducive to running than the one my mom lives in now, which is basically just a .33 mile circle. Gets dull. So we went back to the old neighborhood (typical suburbia: ranch houses, no sidewalks, teenagers trying to run you off the road.) But we were able to run our furthest time ever! 42 minutes, and a 5K, as it turned out. We drove the path afterwards. It was 2 minutes longer than our Race for the Cure 5K, which I could be depressed about, but as this was just a leisurely run, I won’t be. I’m far more happy that I ran for longer than ever before. A nice run, good for making room for the massive amounts of food that were ingested later.

We didn’t run again until this afternoon. Kristina, Ren, and I went to LaSalle Park, in Kenner, which has a path around some soccer fields and another path around Zephyr Stadium, for the New Orleans minor league baseball team. It’s a nice path, a bit too sunny for such a hot (!!! it’s almost *@#&% December!) day, but has some nice shaded areas, and most importantly, it’s different. Yay for that! We ended up going about 2.8 miles, and for me it was 37 minutes (Ren and Kristina finished a bit faster than me.) A very good run for me.

Oh, and at Target this weekend, I signed up for a credit card, so I got a free all in one headphone radio type thing. Yay! Should be good for my long solo runs. Don’t worry, I’ll keep the volume low. Oh yeah, and we got a Christmas tree on Friday. It’s very dreamy. And I saw Harry Potter again today. I’m pathetic. But I love it!

Tuesday, 27 November 2001

Anne’s dad died last night. He was in surgery to have his hip replaced (he wanted to be mobile his last few months) but his heart stopped. Just a month after he was diagnosed, and on his birthday, no less. Well, at least his last day was happy. And Anne just went home on Sunday, so at least she saw him recently. She’s coming in again this morning, I’m going to get her from the airport. For someone who is terrified of flying, she’s doing pretty well. Kristina and I are beginning to feel a little cursed, we used to be the only members (that we knew) of the Dead Dad Club. I think Anne’s doing okay…she actually joked to Kristina about being a new member. Sigh. Humor is all that gets us through these things.

Ran this morning. We got a bit of a late start, so we decided to run around the park as fast as we could, in preparation for the 2 mile race on December 8. It took us about 20 minutes to run around, which is pretty fast. Our first half mile was slow, but then we sped up and ran at an 11 minute/mile pace. We were speeding along! I can’t believe that some people consider that slow! Okay, most people. It was fast to us! Anyway, now I’m sore. Think I’ll stick to the slower but longer runs from here on out.

Thursday, 29 November 2001

Didn’t run yesterday, was still sore from Tuesday. Got up this morning, it was humid and hot (for the end of November – about 80 degrees) and really windy and about to thunderstorm. We had planned on going to the levee and running three miles, but we decided against it, to avoid getting struck by lightning, getting tossed by the wind into the river, etc, etc. So we went around the neighborhood. For just 22 minutes. It was just not a good day for a run. The weather here is just terrible, I just wish it would get cold already.

This afternoon is Anne’s dad’s funeral. Not looking forward to that.

This weekend is a 5K that I’d like to run. I read about it in the paper today, it’s in some local runner’s memory, she recently died of breast cancer. I wonder if I can convince Kristina or Ren to run it with me.

Friday, 30 November 2001

We didn’t run this morning, although I sort of wanted to because it finally got cold yesterday (after our run, naturally.) The weather was cold and yucky yesterday (perfect funeral weather) but sunny and chilly today, but I was so tired last night, so emotionally drained yet my mind was racing from so many things to think about (personal/work crises) that I took a Tylenol PM so that I could sleep, but then, naturally, didn’t want to wake up. It’s okay, I needed a decent night’s sleep. Hopefully I can run tomorrow afternoon, I don’t see why not.

And, nice way to end the month…this lovely picture of Big Ben that someone sent me. I love Big Ben. It’s so beautiful! (Okay, so I mean the clock tower that holds Big Ben, but let’s not get picky about it.) I was Big Ben for Halloween in 2000. The best costume ever!