Top Ten Tuesday: 10 Things I Love About You

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.
Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.

Today is not really about you, but I do love you if you are stopping by here to read. OK, I also love some folks who are not reading, but I love you more. The actual theme is “10 things I love about ‘x'”, where x=thing I love. Since I am trying to focus on both running and read you’ll get 5 about each love.

Reading

  1. “The Zone” – I know you know what I mean. That place where you don’t want to put down the book, where the story is everything, where hours fly by and suddenly you realize you have missed meals and phone calls and texts.
  2. “Signings” – I have not been to many but I have discovered I am willing to drive a ridiculous distance to listen to a favorite author speak/read and get a copy of a favorite book signed.
  3. “Sharing recommendations” – “Wait have you read this one?” “You need to borrow this one!” “I love this book and I know you will too.”
  4. “Escape” – Whether it is Narnia, Brakebills, Hogwarts, Pern or 100 other worlds, I get to be there for a little while. Sometimes for much too short a period of time. Sometimes I get to visit over and over. But those worlds are always beckoning me.
  5. “The Library” – I have been going to the same library now for about 15 years. I love the people and the events and the way that is smells and looks and the calm that exists in the place where I find community and books and laughter.

Running

  1. “Sleep” –  When I run I sleep. When I don’t run I don’t sleep much. This has a huge impact on my life. Sleep is good. As Jim Butcher says in Death Masks “Sleep is God. Go worship.”
  2. “Accomplishment” – I ran .25 miles more today. I got a PR. I ran for longer without stopping. There are very tangible achievements in running. If the rest of my day sucked often I can say but at least I ran.
  3. “Other Runners” – From the runners at races to the ones who help me find shoes that helped me run better to the ones online who answer 700 dumb questions a month. From the ones who run a 17 minute pace to the ones that run a 7 minute pace. I have yet to meet an unfriendly, unhelpful runner.
  4.  & 5. “Zombies, Run” – This is the thing I love the most. I love the app. I love the company. I love the developers. I am so in debt to this thing and those people who make it. I am Runner 5 and I have saved Abel Township. I have laughed, cried, yelled and punched the air while running all because the world is so immersive.  Now add to this a group of people online who I love more and more every day as they share my love for the app and I am discovering mutual support and encouragement and tons of love for each other. Yup this deserves two spots on the list.

Apathy and whine

photo credit: Had a bad day via photopin (license)
photo credit: Had a bad day via photopin (license)

I am still not running. I am more than ever disappointed in my regression and inability to make progress. For a long time that has been my mantra when things have been going poorly; “Seek progress, not perfection.” But what do we do when progress is not even attainable? How can we be motivated when the thing that motivates us is forbidden? How can we practice patience when the one thing that granted an equilibrium and bolstered our ability to be patient is still not allowed?

I have no answers.

Running 2016

Still no running. Longingly syncing old runs and trying to not think about the fact that I paid for a race next week which I will not run. Excited to be able to run Nerd Herd Running‘s “It’s Our Time” Trilogy this year. I will be doing some additional fundraising for Stupid Cancer in the weeks lead up to each race.

Walking without an ankle brace today. Might try an easy .25 mile walk tomorrow.

Product Reviews: SLS3 Dual Pocket Run Belt

This reviewer was given a SLS3 Dual Pocket Run Belt Review for an honest review.

Winter running is difficult and I have been mostly running inside since Travis over at SLS3 sent me a Dual Pocket Run Belt to try out.  That is one of the reasons I waited so long to actually post a review. I can’t run indoors with too much gear. So I wanted to get a few good runs under my belt (see what I did there) before I decided about the product. Luckily, I was able to get a half dozen or so in before the ankle took me out.

When I was first running and needed something to carry my phone a purchased a belt. The four things that were most important to me were size, capacity, ease and comfort. These are the things that I decided to evaluate this Belt on.

Size: When I was first running I had trouble finding a belt large enough for my size. I have slimmed down some but not enough that sizing is not very important to me.  This Belt fits most hips (24-38″). I will say that I did not wear it on my hips but at my waist and it was a good fit. I have never been comfortable with belts that ride on your hips so the sizing was good. I was also pleased to see the sizing easily found on their website. On many sites the sizing information is not easily accessible.

Capacity: I know many of us are using phones to listen to music, track our routes, listen to Zombies, Run! and the idea of running naked is a deal breaker. Personally, I have passed on electronic free runs because the idea of listening to my breathing for 5-10K is not fun. Add to this the fact that phones are getting larger and larger and the most often asked question I have seen is will this “thing” (belt, water carrier, etc.) hold my phone. The dual pocket design on this is actually great. I used one side for my phone (a Moto X Gen 2) and one day even left it in its larger wallet case to see if that would be a problem, it was not. I used the other pocket for a variety of things over those runs. One day it was my point and shoot camera. The next it was my keys and my inhaler. In all of the trials I found that the pockets were large enough for my needs.

Ease of Use: This is the one spot that I felt the Duel Pocket fell short, partly because of my personal phone issues and partially because of design. Apps on my phone tend to crash. Additionally, I run intervals so I often need to be able to look at my phone and/or restart apps. Because the phone is completely covered I could not do this without unzipping and removing the phone. Which brings me to my second issue, the zippers on this product are a bit stiff. I cannot judge if that is something which will work itself out over time, but when I did have to remove the phone or my inhaler, I would have to stop running to do it. That said I can’t wait to take it out again now that I have a new to me smartwatch and see how it works paired with that technology.

Comfort: One of the reasons I switched from my first belt to a hand-held water bottle with phone pocket (other than ease of access to my phone) was that the belt was uncomfortable and that after the first few minutes it would shift around. If I began my run with the pocket in the front it would end up in the back. I did not notice this at all when use this product.  As a matter of fact most runs I forgot I was even wearing a Belt. But when I need to access the pockets they were right were I left them.

Overall the rating is as seen above 9.2. The main issue which brought the score down for me was the lack of window accessibility. If you have a smartwatch or do not need to check your phone while running you could raise this review to a 9.5.

One lucky person will get to try it out themselves since Travis and SLS3 are sponsoring a giveaway! He also wanted me to let you know “This is our limited time introductory price for the dual pocket run belt. The belt retails at $29.90 but our Amazon store has it listed for $16.90 (43% Off).” Amazon store – http://www.amazon.com/dp/B017DRIKFY?tag=broobook-20 And you can also receive 40% off on our entire website www.slstri.com using the code BLOG40.

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When Tenacity is a Bad Thing

Ankle_bandage

The reboot was working. I was back to running 5-7 days a week. I found a training plan that was working and I was on my way to running a half by months ahead of when my scheduled one occurs in November. I was running in flurries and rain and all kinds of craptastic weather. This week, the week that it is in 70s everyday, I hurt my ankle. I don’t remember doing it specifically, but the medial area was sore. I wrapped it and then ignored it as best I could. I was at a SCA event, on my feet, all day Saturday. I went shopping all day Sunday and both Sunday and Monday I run/walked to get miles for a March Madness challenge I was in.

After coming home yesterday and then sitting all day because of the pain, I decided I am not invincible. I decided that my tenacity and drive to make it past week 2 in my challenge may in fact create a situation where my long-term goals (Lose the weight I have gained +25 more before I run a half in November; Run that half; Run under an 11 minute mile) are seriously compromised.

So I am sidelined and sad. But I will go and grab a book and sit in the sunshine with my foot up and finished that book I have not finished yet. And remember All Will Be Well.

Runnning Challenges

I have mentioned over the past few months that one of the major reasons for the slow down in posts, and in reading to be honest, was that I have taken up running. It is crazy I my age to suddenly be obsessed with something I never, ever wanted to do before. But I am. And you all know how I like a good challenge. So I have those as well as reading challenges this year.

Personally I am challenging myself to run 10% more than I did the month before.  That means I will start January at 50 miles and then February will be 55 and so on.

January 2016

I was also going to do the 12 month Running challenge, but I have already fubbed the first one which is a 30 day run streak. 2.5 hour drive to a gymnastics meet for Bean and 4.5 hours of meet and 2 hour lunch with a teammate and 2.5 hours home and I didn’t have it in me to get out there. So I am all about adjusting. As soon as get my 30 day run streak in I will move on to me next Challenge.

And I am in regular Endomondo challenges. Here are two: