Friday, July 26, 2013

Appreciating winter

Ooh, hello! Where did my week go? I'm not sure, but I think it got filled up with work and sleep and training ....and possibly Pinterest. All I know is that I've been comatose on the couch by about 8:30pm each night and I was even in bed at that time once or twice. SO tired...

I blame winter. The extra hours of darkness just make me want to a) hibernate and b) sleep. Wait. Those are the same thing, right? Yeah, whatever. What I mean is, I just don't want to go out in the evenings - even when I'm not sleeping. If we have a social event, half of me is all Yeah, awesome! Let's go out and have fun! and the other half is Do we have to go? Can't we just stay in with a book or a DVD and a blankie? Actually, the stay in "half" is probably more like three-quarters.

But I've been making an effort to complain less about winter and appreciate it more. There are some good things about the cold, frosty season, after all. Books, hearty casseroles, hot drinks and blankies aside, I've been making an effort to notice and appreciate some of the places I do actually make an effort to go to. Or just some of the stunning displays that Mother Nature puts on. The phone camera has been put to work to capture them:

An ordinary view from my office window - but a pretty extraordinary sky. 

A quick bite to eat at MoVida next Door before Pink's concert gave
me the opportunity to check out Hosier Lane's street art once again.

This day, I had my DSLR with me. Unfiltered shot of a STUNNING winter day; Luna Park looking good.

Same day, early evening, St Kilda beach. Gah! Tricky lighting.
I stopped to take a photo of this pretty part of the local wetlands on a recent MTB ride.

When you have to be at work stupidly early, it's nice to be rewarded with a view of a dramatic sky.
I ventured out onto the cold and windy balcony to get this one. Wish I'd had my camera.

I almost missed this gorgeous sunrise - thanks to a neighbour accidentally setting off their car alarm,
I happened to be looking out the front door at just the right moment.

I'll be trying hard to look past the mundane to see the extraordinary, to enjoy the beauty that winter has to offer, and to whinge about the cold a bit less.

OK, that last one is a lie. Cold weather sucks and I'll whinge if I want to. Deal with it.


In other news, I'm working on some new goals. One of them involves running. Yes, you did read that right: R.U.N.N.I.N.G.

No, I won't be signing up for any marathons. But I do plan to get back to running 5k distances on a reasonably regular basis. I loved being able to do that. I reckon I could actually do it right now, as my general fitness is pretty good - but it would be excruciatingly slow and I would not enjoy it.

There are lessons to be learnt from history too. Thanks to my uneven legs, I have a tight left ITB and am prone to all sorts of issues with my crooked pelvis, which can translate into lumbar pain, knee niggles and all kinds of un-fun stuff. Running tends to aggravate those less-than-perfect body parts and if I go all Just (over)do it, I can end up with pain and/or injuries that send me back to the sidelines for extended periods.

So I'm proceeding cautiously. Probably over-cautiously, but that's better than the alternative. I set myself a goal of running 2km last Sunday and I did it easily. I kept the pace deliberately slow, averaging barely under 7:00 minute pace. But, woohoo! ...Did you notice the part where I said it was EASY? Also, I pulled up afterwards without any dramas - some extra tightness in the ITB, but I booked myself an osteopath session and had that sorted.

This morning, I repeated my 2km effort, this time increasing my pace just a little and knocking 35 seconds off Sunday's time. It was still easy. :) I'm going to focus on distance for now, and work more seriously on increasing my speed once I hit the 5km mark.

My "avoid injury" plan includes:

Gradually increasing my distance
Keeping my speed a little slower than I think I can go
Making a conscious effort to maintain good posture
Regular osteopathy treatments
Foam roller work for the old ITB. (Yay...)

I think that should do the trick. I'll keep you posted. :)



AlleyCat Runs said...

some beautiful pic there! I'm a winter hermit too :0) good luck with injury free running!!

Magda said...

You didn't mention the other highlight of winter and that is the fashions: boots, scarves, opaque tights. I'll actually wear a short(er) skirt in winter but only with opaque tights that delude me into thinking my legs are slimmer than they actually are LOL.


Vicki said...

GORGEOUS pics! And yay! running with no injuries!

Unknown said...

You've got to love the foam roller (and by love, I often actually mean dislike with a passion). It does wonders but OMG does it hurt sometimes.
I love your pics! Although they do make me homesick for my home town.

Kek said...

Thanks, ladies... I'm feeling very confident about getting some running Ks under my belt without any problems this time around. The wisdom of age and experience, perhaps?

Magda, I hear you on the winter fashions - and I totally agree. I really am loving my boots and tights, layered shirts, cardigans, jackets, jumpers and scarves and so on. AND I now have a collection of coats. Six at last count. :)

Debbish said...

Love the jogging plan. I also love the pics - the second last one is my fave!

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