I Need Padded Shorts.

I meant to write a Boston Marathon Tragedy post, like everyone else. I really did. Six days ago. And then the waiting period of shock and initial response in the media — and blog posts — came and went, and, well, here I am. I haven’t written shit about it yet, and I’m a runner.

I was laying in my bed, reading a book and trying to stave off my cravings to Facebook-tornado my afternoon away; I’m trying to use the internet less than daily (hi, blog, that’s where I’ve been). I checked my phone for messages, and HuffPo had put through a notification that read: 2 Explosions at Boston Marathon. Shit. One of my running buddies was there, along with many others from my community. Some I’ve met, and some I just see frequently in the top placings of our local road race results. I did what everyone else did, and I posted on his Facebook wall, asking him to reply that he was safe.

An hour later, he did. In the meantime, the local running community started an unofficial headcount of runners, family members, and traveling companions they knew via their own Facebook page, marking runners as safe as they’d been heard from and some, as still missing. It broke my heart to read these messages, as it was happening, as the news was changing the status from “explosions” to “bombs.”

I did the only thing I knew how to do to relieve stress, to sort my thoughts, to empathize and sympathize: I ran. I could have driven to one of my favorite spots, or taken along water for a longer run, but in a haze of WTF, I just put my shoes on. I stepped out the door and onto the hilly rural highway as everyone else was getting off work. I often ignore motorists, but on Monday, I waved back. I waved for a long time at each car, my steps vacillating between anger and sadness and helplessness and a sense of the beautiful small community I live around.

The time came to head to work, and I bathed and prepped and straightened and plucked and shaved and oiled and painted and did all of the things I always do, except while I was supposed to be working, I was staring at the footage of the bombs being played. Over and over and over. The club mutes the televisions, but it wasn’t the words. I’d read the words from a variety of news sources all day; I hadn’t seen any pictures. I don’t pay for live television of any kind, and actually watching live television has become, in all instances, rather surreal to me now.

*

This past weekend, I dragged my ass out of bed at NINE in the morning to run with my trail buddies instead of going for my long run alone. I ran for more than three hours — my longest amount of time on my feet yet — and felt no more worn than most short, half-hour runs. The trail is doing wonders for my stamina and speed. Sunday I was supposed to rest after that kind of exertion, and I just couldn’t sit still. My legs felt fine and spring was begging me to finally get in a second ride on my new Cannondale bike. Nearly twenty miles, my second ride out in a decade, the day of the week and month I would usually be the most tired. The only thing that hurts is my ass. My pussy lips are feeling a little bruised, though not discolored, after this weekend-warrior ride.

Energy, galore, probably from quitting nicotine gum on Friday. I finally, actually, for-real, quit. I quit smoking in October 2011, and chewed nicotine gum to keep myself on the right path. Of course, that really meant that I just traded my addiction to cigarettes for some really fucking expensive gum that left me with rings of yellow stain around my lips if I wasn’t careful to wipe my mouth every so often. A year and a half into chewing gum “not to be used longer than 12 weeks,” and my teeth and gums were becoming somewhat of a fork-in-the-road situation. Couldn’t hurt to try getting off the gum by now, eh? Eh?

Careful. Careful not to gain weight. Careful to keep that weight down, the weight off, the pudge from appearing, the tone, the desirability, I’d better not gain weight or I’ll have to go back to the gum to keep it off. Careful. Careful.

So far? The only single side effect I’ve had is enormous amounts of energy. Each day for four days, I’ve felt like bouncing out of bed. I haven’t needed or wanted to sit still, take naps, write this blog post, to sit idly in the dressing room on break. It’s so far out of my personality, that I’m feeling a little lost. Where is this energy coming from?! I’ve been waking up three or four times a night, feeling rested physically and mentally after only a few hours of sleep.

In this manic-energy frenzy, I built a compost bin (4′ x 5′!). Right now, it looks like some dead yard stuff and some garbage. I also helped tune up my garden tractor, reclaim some yard from last year’s overgrowth at the edge of the property, and annihilate thousands of box elder bugs in massive nests. I cut up part of a tree, cleaned out the barn…I’ve been busy.

*

So I’ve been focusing some of the excess energy into kitchen inventions using things in my fridge and pantry that need to get used pronto, like this one, a meal to refuel after working tonight:

A vegan burger patty made of sweet potato, black beans, onion, garlic, and quinoa; Udi’s Gluten-Free bread (the best frozen stuff I’ve found yet!); kale and blue cheese dressing. An orange, three (three!?) glasses of water.

 

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~ by The Stiletto-Shod One on April 23, 2013.

One Response to “I Need Padded Shorts.”

  1. I don’t mean to sound weird miss, but well… I’m proud of you.

    Proud of you for improving, proud of you for checking on your friends and quitting smoking. Proud of you for generally living your life the way you want to… and seeming very happy, and above all seeming to be proud of yourself.

    … and I am sincerely glad that you and your friends were okay.

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