This morning on my way to work I stopped at the Dunkin Donuts to pick up some coffee. This is outside of my normal routine. Usually I just have coffee at home or make a to go cup. But today I was just craving the taste of some Dunkin. I pulled up, parked, went inside and was in and out with coffee in hand in about 5 minutes. Not bad.
Walking back to my car I noticed a line of cars wrapped around the building. A line of cars waiting for the drive-thru. It got me wondering why people sit in their car, with a much longer wait, instead of getting out and walking inside.
I had to rule out the weather. It was a beautiful morning. The wind hadn’t started blowing yet, the sun was shining high in the sky, the air was refreshing. I guess I would have been more sympathetic had it been a torrential downpour or arctic cold.
So why? What would prompt people to waste their gas and pollute the air? There are so many times that I really want to give people the benefit of the doubt. But rationalizing on behalf of other people is probably worse than them doing it on their own.
Sadly I think people are just that lazy. So lazy that the short walk from the parking lot to inside would just be too strenuous.
Or, maybe it isn’t a matter of laziness it could be the drive-thru is less personal. Maybe this stems from the I can be connected to everyone and no-one all at the same time. If people were given the option to text in their orders, pay via paypal and never see the person who prepared their food they would do it.
I’m sure I could come up with more ideas as to why people refuse to get out of their cars. I rarely go to a fastfood restaurant nowadays, but it always amazes me when I see 5 cars in the drive-thru line and no one inside.
I’m sure I could go on and make this an argument about the state of affairs of our society. But that takes too much work. I think I’ll just let the car idle a little longer until I can pull up to the speaker and order a dozen donuts and a large coffee.
The other day I was talking with a fellow runner. We were both saying how we like to watch the last person finish a distance race. Of course the person who comes in last isn’t nearly as newsworthy as the guy or gal who runs through the tape. We love the winners. We get to hear their interview about how fast the course was and how good it felt to run today. Not to diminish their great feat and victory, but the people who cross the finish line first, should. They are runners.
It’s the person who comes in last though that sparks my interest and curiosity. These are people who for lack of a better term really have no business running, and for that fact running a marathon or half marathon. This year Jim and I finished the Goofy Challenge at Disney World, which consists of running the half marathon on Saturday followed by a full marathon on Sunday. Over the course of the weekend we took the opportunity to walk far more than run. But being relatively fit we still maintained a healthy pace well ahead of the required course pace.
As we were trudging through the back roads and service roads of Disney World we get to see and talk to lots of people. There were all of the people who had run all 18 of the Disney marathons. One of them was injured this year and was walking with the assistance of 2 canes. But he was not ready to miss number 18. There were people running in memory of cancer patients, running to remember the military, running to save their own lives. One of those guys who was running to save his own life had proudly printed on his shirt, used to be a 2 pack a day smoker, lost 50 pounds, and now I’m running my first 13.1. I find that those in the back of the pack have such compelling stories.
It is very humbling to watch someone struggle to endure during a distance event. Watching someone struggle to just finish but putting their entire heart and soul into what they are doing right at that moment, people who by taking the first step began to alter their lives.
Unlike years past, this year Jim and I stayed and watched the very last person cross the finish line during the Half Marathon. The stands were empty with the exception of a few people. The clock was nearing 4 hours and 30 minutes. A heavy man lumbered slowly towards the finish, followed by a parade of bikes signifying the last runner. He had a crowd of friends who had finished the run earlier but came back onto the course to finish the race with him. The announcer was just as energetic as if it was the first runner to cross the finish line. Mickey and Minnie Mouse were eagerly awaiting just past the finish to give a well deserved high five.
It wasn’t graceful. It wasn’t fast. There was no sprint when he saw the finish line. He just kept moving forward. And on that day in January this runner did something that he probably never imagined he would do, finish 13.1 miles.
The weather across the country is BEAUTIFUL. Today it was 70 degrees. I’m still in shock that it’s that warm. I feel lucky that this has all happened in our first year living in New England.
The warm weather has drawn me to the beach to look at the water. I have this urge to get back in the water and start surfing again. Just looking at the water, inspecting the waves, has made me yearn for the feel of being one with the ocean. The past two days have been flat. Which is probably good, because I’m not sure I’m ready to get in the not quite freezing water. (Then again that is what a wet suit is made for.)
The weather has also got me wanting to run again. I’m happy to report I am back to exercising again. I haven’t made the full leap into things, but I have gone on a few runs with work and on my own and also done some other workouts. So far the pain has not returned but I keep waiting for it.
But with the warm weather coming back in full force be sure to be safe outside. Wear sunscreen so you don’t get a burn. Drink lots of water so you don’t dehydrate. And most importantly enjoy and have fun!
March is one of my most favorite times of the year. This is the month of St Patrick’s day but more importantly the NCAA basketball tournament happens. I love March Madness.
Yesterday with the loss of Missouri, Duke, and Michigan State my brackets were officially busted. I loved watching these games. One of the reasons I love this tournament so much is because of the possibilities. Any of the 68 schools has a chance of winning. The powerhouse schools usually come out on top, but when a small college manages to win it keeps that dream alive.
As I was watching Lehigh handle Duke I noticed something. The body language of the Duke players told a story. These young men looked defeated. I never sensed they were playing with heart. The loss of the game didn’t seem to hurt them.
In the other games the losing teams played with heart. They held their shoulders high. You could see the determination in their faces. Michigan State and Missouri never quit playing and they believed that they would be able to score the points needed to tie or be victorious. Norfolk State and Ohio played the same way. In the end those teams won because things just went their way.
But Duke on the other hand it was a different story. It is sad when people quit before they start. Maybe Duke was resigned to the fact that they wouldn’t win the championship. Maybe it was the pressure that had mounted on them. I can’t tell you the reason why, all I can tell you is how Duke carried themselves told the whole story.
I didn’t listen to the post game interviews. I’m not sure what they said. But no words could convince me they came to play. Their body language revealed how they were feeling.
This isn’t limited to sports. Your body language gives away your secrets all the time. Be careful what you say.
Jim and I signed up to do the Providence run with the intent of having it be Jim’s first run since the surgery. Unfortunately it did not work out that way. I decided to go ahead and get hurt so it was a 5k walk for us.
The only other time we’ve really walked a 5k was at Disney. So this was a new experience for us. It was a different perspective. The people at the back of the pack are so supportive of the lead runners but also the runners around them. There were quite a few first time runners.
We passed by three women. One was running her first race. She seemed discouraged because she was walking. The other ladies kept telling her that she was out and running today so she should be proud.
And as we crossed the finish and received our medal, I heard one girl exclaim how proud she was to have finished her first race and get her first medal. What a feeling that must be?
The other joy of taking a walk was we got to enjoy the view. After the run, Providence was doing their St Patty’s Day parade. Bands were lined up and playing, clowns were on the route, and bagpipers were piping. The runners were dressed in their most festive green, well most of the runners. The mullet guys looked like they were auditioning for Reno 911.
This race really set the tone for this holiday. Next weekend we won’t be running but enjoying our first St Patrick’s day in Newport.
Running is so much more fun when it involves a holiday or costumes. That is one of the reasons we love Halloween runs so much. Well this is our first year living in Rhode Island and we hear St Patty’s day is similar to Halloween. Today we are going dawn our new shirts, hit the streets, and do a 5k as a way to celebrate this fine holiday. I’m sure we won’t be the most dressed up people out there, but that’s okay. This will be the first 5k I’ve done where I am doing nothing but walking. That means I should be able to take LOTS of good pictures.
I have ditched the crutches and it feels good. In fact not working out at all right now feels really good.
I guess I should amend a bit, I had to assess my foot. The conference came at a good time because it was far enough out to give my foot some rest and because I was flying I did not want to travel with crutches. The walking is good, it’s the standing where I need to remember to not stand solely on my right leg. I know if I do that I will ruin my better leg. (Notice I don’t say good because I have issues with that one to, just not as bad.)
So far so good. Today I did the PT warm up. Next week I will stick with some super low impact workouts. If all is good then I think it’s time to strap on the running shoes. I also think by then I will be done with resting and ready to get my sweat on. Besides, I have some really big runs I need to start at least thinking about.