Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Cranky at that dumb guy

So yesterday was Monday. Usually, Monday means spin class, which it did last night. But it also meant a little pool time. With the Indoor Tri coming up on Saturday, I wanted to get another workout or two done in the pool, so I packed my suit and headed to the Bloomingdale branch of the club. Because spin is at 6:30, that meant I could get an hour or so in the pool, and practice the transition from pool to bike. (The tri allows you 10 minutes to make the transition.)

When I got to the lap pool, all the lanes were full. But there was one middle-aged dude running in the lane (which is not recommended in the lap pool). So I went over to the lane to ask if he'd be willing to share. "Sir," I said. He would not look at me; he ignored me, turned around and ran to the other end.

It should be noted that many times, swimmers have to share lanes. Linda, Megan and I share all the time. You get used to it. The lanes really are wide enough. (Except that time Linda kicked me.)

So on his next run past, I approached again. "Sir," I said, "would you mind terribly if I swam in half of that lane?"

"That's fine, I guess," he said. "If you think you can fit."

Yes, that happened. Middle-aged dude called me fat. It wasn't so much what he said, but how he said it.

Ordinarily, something like that would send me into some sort of chocolate eating frenzy. But no, I just wanted to swim. So I let it go, I waited for a lane, and I swam. (Incidentally, I also got the transition from pool to bike done in just under 10 minutes. Including a potty stop.)

As for middle-aged dude, my fondest wish for him is that he someday finds himself in need of a lane to run in, and has someone graciously offer half of theirs. It would be nice if he'd learn how to treat people.

Monday, April 16, 2012

This one, we run for Mom

April 14 dawned a little cloudy, but we would not be deterred. Not even when I got lost. Not even when it looked like rain. No, today my sister Kathie and our nephew Alex headed to Wrigley Field for a 5K - the Race to Wrigley.

See, today is the eighth anniversary of Mom's death. Mom was a lot of things, but one thing everyone knew about her was that she loved the Cubs. So it seemed like the perfect way to honor her.

We started off right on the corner of Clark & Addison, and ran through Lakeview/Wrigleyville. I approached the race a bit differently than usual - sans technology. Running unplugged is different, and kinda awesome. It felt good to just run for the sake of running, tune in to the neighborhood and let go. I had my old-school iPod with me, but nothing to track my pace, or monitor my time, or even view my heartrate. Mostly, I just listened to the world around me. Just me, and the run.

So it came as a bit of a surprised when I neared the finish line at less than 45 minutes. I figured we started about three minutes after gun time, so my time should be roughly 42 minutes - a pretty solid run for someone as slow as me. Turns out, it was my best race to date. I finished in 40 minutes and 44 seconds, or at a 13:09/minute mile. I was number 3289 out of 3530 total, and 96 out of 112 in my age group. I am improving!

After the run, we walked down to Nuts on Clark to get (you guessed it!) nuts, and popcorn. On the way back to the car, we walked past this place, and we decided to stay for breakfast. Can I just say, the menu is amazing. Alex and I split the breakfast sliders and chilaquiles; amazing!

It was a near perfect day. Still a little cloudy, but for us, it was ideal. Having the opportunity to run under the famous Wrigley Field marquee, to remember Mom, was incredible. If she were alive today, she would have been on the sidelines, ringing a cowbell, hollering for us as we crossed the finish line.

I miss her every day, but I'm grateful for the memories, and the deep love o baseball she gave us all.