Beth Runs!

After sitting on my butt all winter, knitting and watching Craig Ferguson into the wee hours, it's time to get up, get out, and move!!!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Song Request

So, I'm putting together a playlist on my iPod for the Disney Marathon, and I'd love your suggestions!

What is the best music to run or workout to?

What motivates you on a rainy day?

What song can make you smile even if you've missed BART again, squirted ketchup all over your white pants, and suddenly realize you still have shampoo in your hair because you were in such a hurry to miss the train that you forgot to rinse it out or even look at yourself in the mirror before leaving the house?

What makes you shake your hips while vacuuming or doing the dishes or cleaning out the gutters?

These are the kinds of songs I need in my iPod during the marathon!

Please click the comments link to leave me your suggestions. Or e-mail me. Or call. Or stop by my house with your music and play me something. Let's dance! (Hmmm... David Bowie? I'll have to try that.)

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Sunday, December 17, 2006

And I am telling you, I'm not... stopping!

No no no no way
I'm not running without you
I'm not running without you
I don't want to be free (of my iPod!)

I did my 20 miles today with the "Dreamgirls" soundtrack on my iPod and Jennifer Hudson in particular spurring me on. Something about her Effie White that is so stubborn, so insistent, and just so freaking MOVING!

Ironically, watching her performance in the movie Saturday night left me absolutely stricken in my seat, snot and tears and probably other bodily fluids pouring out, me unable to move or even breathe, the whole audience, in fact, draped over their seats like wrung out rags. AND THAT MEANS WE LIKED IT!!!

Today, in my ears, her determination and absolute commitment to the character, and especially that particular performance, lit a fire under my feet when they were already on fire! I intended to walk the entire 20 miles to save my legs since my knee and quad were still sore from the run 2 weeks ago. But by Mile 13, I was so tired of walking that I started running every 1/2 mile, and by the final mile, there was no no no no way I could slow down!

By the way, this is one song I will NEVER attempt in a karaoke bar. You have my word on it.

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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Hobble through the tulips...

...and God bless us everyone. That's a picture of me yesterday, from the 1911 edition of A Christmas Carol. I went back in time and posed for it. See, I just wanted my arms to be as sore today as my legs were yesterday. (Ever tried going up stairs on crutches? It helps to go backwards.) You think maybe I wasn't ready to run on Sunday after all?

Today I'm sore, but at least I'm no longer feeling that putting weight on my knee will cause it to snap right out from under me. I left the crutches home, but read the following article from last week's New York Times: Is Marathoning Too Much of a Good Thing for Your Heart? I e-mailed my doctor to request a spiral CT scan. He hasn't responded yet.

I'm in competition with my sister Ellen for the most doctor visits in a year. She's having a hysterectomy and blogging about it: She gets her second Lupron shot a few days before coming to Florida to cheer me in my marathon (assuming I don't hack off my legs with a chainsaw before then.) Crazy times!


Sunday, December 10, 2006

A tough week... (and a new gadget)

First, the gadget! After pulling an all-nighter a few weeks ago researching Nike + iPod shoe hacks online, I sprang $29 for the Nike + iPod Sport Kit. (The hack being how to attach the receiver to my New Balance 881s so as to avoid spending $100 for Nike shoes that suck for me.)

The Nike + iPod Sport Kit includes a sensor that attaches to your shoe and a receiver that plugs into your iPod. While you run, they calculate your distance and speed and record your stats in the iPod. Once in a while, a voice interrupts your music to tell you how you're doing. When you get home, you plug your iPod into the computer, and all the info is uploaded to your personal page on, where you can keep track of your workout history.

The problem is that Nike insists you need their special shoes with the built-in pocket for the sensor in order for the system to work. Turns out, that's a big fat lie. The sensor just needs to be attached to your shoe in a relatively flat position. In the Nike shoes, the sensor lies in a flat compartment inside the insole.

But now, outside companies have created ways to attach it to the top of the shoe held on by shoe laces. The RunAway, by SwitchEasy is the best and most economical solution I've found. Some people want to pay less by sewing velcro to the top of their shoe or carving out a chunk of insole with a knife. In fact, the blog ("If loving my iPod is wrong, I don’t want to be right.") has a whole list of Nike + iPod shoe hacks. The RunAway only costs $8 and to me, it's the most elegant solution.

I've been using the Nike + iPod kit for 2 weeks now, and it works great! I cannot believe how accurate it is at calculating mileage. Its readings match the display on the treadmill as well as the mileage calculations of my mapping program. Now I don't have to map out every run ahead of time, and I can be more spontaneous while I'm out. I think it's magic!

Okay, now for the tough part. Last Sunday's 18-miler was hell on my legs... belatedly. Monday, my legs were somewhat sore, but Tuesday was ridiculous. My right knee and right inner quad ached to the point that running was out of the question.

I tried running on the treadmill at the gym Wednesday night, but after 30 minutes I gave up and used the elliptical trainer for the remaining 20 minutes. The next morning, my knee hurt so bad, I wore a brace all day at work. Didn't attempt to run at all until today. I hope I'm not totally screwed on January 7 after missing so many training days.

Today, Michael and I ran along the Embarcadero. I only needed to run 8 miles today (an "easy" run), so I turned around just inside the Presidio and ran back to the Ferry Building: . Michael's long legs carried him all the way to the Golden Gate Bridge and back (11 miles) in less time than it took me to do my 8. Afterwards, we soaked in the hot tub at 24-Hour Fitness before coming home.

I think my leg and knee are good again. But we'll see about any delayed pain in the next few days.

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Sunday, December 03, 2006

18 Miles! What's my name again???

Yes, I did 18 miles today (Walk 3/Run 1) in 3 hours, 57 minutes, and 45 seconds.

Here's the freakin' route:

Saw 2 dead deer at the side of the road.

Ran faster then I ever have in my life from an invisible man around Mile 15.

Lost my expensive custom-made sunglasses.

Can't imagine doing 8 more than this in a month. Trying not to think about it.

Got off BART at the end and couldn't remember my own name for a few seconds.

But then I got home and Michael fed me. It's our 2-year anniversary today. Going to go get in bed with him and forget about running for a while.