Friday, June 29, 2012

This Is My Strava Post


So.

(I'm having trouble starting these blog posts lately.  I mean real trouble.  Trouble akin to certain focus problems that certain Yahoos might have which were inherited by a certain rambling 'n rabid mom.  So  it seems that starting a post with "so" is necessary for a while.)

Last Monday, I had promised some posts about all of the cool stuff that's been happening around here.  On Tuesday, I created drafts of all of these happenings.  Six drafts to be exact.  Figured this was a good start – like the first step on a giant staircase.  On Wednesday, I loaded the laptop with goals to produce.  To my horror, however, I discovered that the photos needed to adequately complete these posts were saved on my little point 'n shoot, and that little point 'n shoot is nowhere.

I became a touch frantic.  I tore the house apart.  I blamed any and everyone (not really, I'm disturbingly calm about these things lately.)  Then I remembered that we had a little field trip with The Winder on Friday and I had imposed storage of said point 'n shoot in a pocket of her stroller.  Could it be there?  I think it could!

Long, boring story, long:  I sent a text to The Winder, "IS MY CAMERA IN YOUR STROLLER 'CAUSE I NEED IT, LIKE, NOW, YOU STOLE IT YOU TRAMP!"  She replied with some lame excuse about being camping and didn't know.  Then I stewed over why the hell she didn't have the dang stroller with her on her camping trip, 'cause she needed to ease my worries and pronto.  I also stewed over the fact that she had mobile coverage.  If she had mobile coverage, where the hell was she camping? She's not truly camping if she has coverage.  Just sayin'.

The Winder phoned on Thursday evening to report that the camera is in the pocket of the stroller that she didn't take "camping."  I will retrieve the camera today or on the morrow.  Worries have been eased.

Without pictures, my only option at this point is to talk about Strava.  Everyone, and I do mean everyone, has done a Strava post. Prolly even CJane, but I don't read her blog so maybe someone could tell me if she has a Strava post, and if not, maybe someone could tell her she needs to get on the blogger bandwagon and fashion a Strava Post.

Here's the typical Strava Post, in two and more words: Strava is Evil!  Turns every ride into a race!

My Strava post is different, so you might want to pay attention.

I've had a significant injury in the achilles tendon.  This has been problematic for the running (and the rest of my life and anyone who lives with me.)  I'm on a successful mending and rehab schedule now – even made it 8 miles last Saturday.  In the process, it has become clear that the Rabid needs some cross training, so Spouse and I acquired some road bikes.  Those bikes were acquired the actual day that stinky boot came off.

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Now, being as I have a road bike, and being as I live in American Fork, the first mountain to pedal (in the granny gear and weaving side-to-side) is the American Fork Canyon or Alpine Loop.  And, after a few weeks – holy toledo! – I was able to do so (in the granny gear and weaving side-to-side.)

I've ridden the American Fork side of the Alpine Loop a hand full of times now.  Surprisingly, I've managed to remove four whole minutes from my time.  (From the climb, that is.  The descent is a whole 'nother story and I ain't paying attention to that just yet.)

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All the neighbors and all the biker bloggers are doing this Strava thing.  Should I do this Strava thing too?  At first it was a "nah" because I was having fun with the recreational granny gear 'n weaving side-to-side thing.  Didn't want to ruin it by trying to be good at it.  I've also had my butt kicked on a daily basis (figuratively and physically) for about four months now.  Discouragement abounds.  Why add to it by comparing myself to everyone else?

Here's where things changed:  Fatty, aka "Fat Cyclist," published a little Strava ditty about his lovely wife Lisa, aka "The Hammer."  To say "The Hammer" is awesome would be trite and undeservedly subdued, so I'll just say she's a monumental human being and a monumental athlete.  I quite like her.  I've known The Hammer for a few years, and as you might recall, she was on my Wasatch Back Team last year.

In this aforementioned Strava ditty on The Hammer, Fatty proceeded to demonstrate The Hammer's new association with Strava, and how after one meager upload, she became Queen of the Mountain, on like, everything.

After reading the post, I decided that maybe I should have a Strava account so that I can follow The Hammer.  Then it occurred to me that I HAVE YET TO MARK MY "RABID RUNNER" TERRITORY ON STRAVA!  Eee gads, this could be bad!  What if some other rabid runner has picked the "rabid runner" accounting?  To my relief, "rabid runner" was still available.  Holy smokes that was close.

(I do that, you know.  I go around creating various rabidrunner accounts so that no one else will.  I was about to unleash a certain dog-and-fire hydrant metaphor that started with "p," but decided against it.)

One might think that viewing The Hammer's Strava successes might spook one into intimidation.  On the contrary!  The Hammer is one of the most inspiring and uplifting of folks I know.  Does she tromp about tooting an "I am triumphant" horn?   Not at all.  I've yet to see her without a welcoming smile and a air of encouragement.

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Here's a photo Spouse sent me when I was in Los Angeles.  He ran into The Hammer during their 100 miles of nowhere thing, which insanely included doing the loop FIVE TIMES!  She nabbed him to say hi and he took a photo.  Look at that welcoming smile!

Now that we've gone over my love for The Hammer, let's talk about my Strava experience.  After finishing my bike ride on Wednesday morning, I went about the morning business with the Yahoos.  While Yahoo #2 was practicing the piano, and I was there prodding with hot poker, I decided to turn on the GPS and do the upload.

Strava is slick.  You plug the GPS into the USB thingee, turn it on, login to your account, and upload. And, get this – it automagically takes the GPS mappings of your stuff and assigns it to segments!  It's magic.  I didn't need to manually assign my rides and runs to anything.

After the upload, and in between page 78 of theory and Allegretto, I received notification that I was QOM (Queen of the Mountain) of some Lone Peak Parkway segment.  Imagine my surprise.  Now image my horror.  That's not right!  Something is wrong!

My Lone Peak Parkway time had trumped the fasted king (or dude.)  What the?!  That ain't right.  It was then that I realized that I had LEFT THE DUMB GPS ON WHILE DRIVING IN THE CAR!

Oh the horror.  That is cheating! Someone will find me! Remember when I panicked over the little point 'n shoot left with The Winder?  Times that by a million.  I was convinced I was busted.  Could even hear the Strava Gestapos at my door, ready to put me in jail for being a fraud.

"Crap!" I said, along with some other words that forced Yahoo #2 to stop his piano practice and stare.  "How the hell do I change it?!"  

Yahoo #2 said he didn't know.  After ten long and arduous minutes of fuss 'n figit, I figured out how to crop that particular ride so as it doesn't include the cheating in the car.

Good grief.  Technology is awesome, isn't it?



Monday, June 25, 2012

I Am 40 Hear Me Roar!


A couple of weeks ago, the Spouse and I had pleasure and opportunity to sit through some baseball.  By "sit through," I mean sit through. And watch. Every last inning and side show and stretch.  This is the only baseball game I will attend in ten years, so come hell or high water, I had planned to watch it all.

We were sitting with my dad Mikey and a bunch of his friends. During the team switch-a-roo – you know that one thing that happens in the middle of an inning – one of Mikey's friends leaned over to my right ear and said, "Hey Rabid.  Why aren't you writing on your blog any more?"

"Well."  I said, "There's nothing to write about.  Life has been vanilla-flavored milquetoast."  

It's true.  Vanilla-flavored milquetoast.  Blah.

At long last, however, things have changed and I've bottled some of my milquetoast life in a variety of flavors and spices.  Lots has been happening around here (finally!) and I'm ready to force these flavors upon you folks.

First and foremost, is the flavor of forty – as in four 'n zero, 40, and old as mold!  Last week I turned 40.  At first I wanted to keep quiet about it all and pretend it didn't happen; wanted to bury my woes beneath a pillow for days and listen to the smooth sounds of seashores.  I changed my mind, however, when I read the advice of the mighty and wise Tyrion Lannister, son of Lord Tywin Lannister, brother of Jaime and Cersei Lannister, and Lord Paramount of the Westerlands (from George R.R. Martin's Game of Thrones, and why has it taken me so long to pick up these books?!):

"Never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you."

What I are now is 40!  I wear this 40 as armor!  I am 40 hear me roar!

This 40th birthday came in with a roaring.  It was a week-long celebration.  Stay tuned. 


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Starting Over – Tuesday Tune, vol 112


Yesterday was a rough day.  I'm not sure why.  I was sitting there, on the couch of the piano teachers, feeling all sorts of overwhelmed and sorry for myself, because I have to start over with my fitness, when it occurred to me that I GET to start over.  Some aren't so lucky or fortunate.  I decided then and there that it was time to change my tune.  Whenever I change my tune, it naturally involves the creation of a playlist.  That's why today's Tuesday Tunes are all about starting over.

Let's here it for starting over again!  Wahoo!

P.S. I ran 5 miles yesterday, so I don't get or see why I insist on the dramatic belly aching.  Oh well.  My moods are roller coasters of the highest and lowest variety.  Perhaps next week should include some tunes about roller coasters and moods.

(Just Like) Starting Over – John Lennon
Starting Over – The Crystal Method
No Fit State – Hot Chip
On The Road Again – Canned Heat
Ready To Start – Arcade Fire
On the Road Again – Willie Nelson
Future Starts Slow – The Kills
Do It Again – Holy Ghost!
Let's Do It Again – The Staple Singers
Hard Time Gettin' Started – Eddie Boyd
Start Me Up – The Rolling Stones
Wanna Be Startin' Somethin' – Michael Jackson
Fight For Your Right – The Beastie Boys
Here It Goes Again – Ok Go
Pick Yourself Up – Dianne Reeves
Starting Now – Ingrid Michaelson
Start To Go – Promise Of The Real
Try It Again – The Hives
New Beginning – Tracy Chapman
Beginning To See The Light – The Velvet Underground
Pick Up The Pieces – Average White Band
Moving On Up – M
People Let the Day Begin – The Call
Here I Go Again – Whitesnake
Everything Counts – Depeche Mode
Start Again – Echo & The Bunnymen
One Step at a Time – Jordan Sparks
Just One More Chance – Billie Holiday & Ray Ellis And Orchestra
Step One Two – Kaskade
One Step Closer – U2 Feeling Good – Nina Simone
Starting Over – La Toya Jackson (Just Like)
Starting Over (2010 Remix) – John Lennon


Wednesday, June 06, 2012

The Beginning of the Beginning


According to www.brownielinks.com and other various web sites, today, June the 6th, and today, the first Wednesday of June, has some national significance.   Today is D-Day, Drive-In Movie Day, and National Tailor's Day.  Today is also smack-dab in the middle of Black Single Parents Week, International Clothesline, Headache Awareness, Business Etiquette, Sun Safety, Tire Safety and Superman Weeks.

That's a lot of stuff to celebrate and/or commemorate and/or provide awareness, isn't it?  Sure is.  What I failed to mention, in that mass inventory of national somethings-or-other, is that today, the first Wednesday of June, is National Running Day.

To celebrate I ran four miles.  Which is good, 'cause National Donut Day was last Saturday and that one was celebrated with some Korean Pizza and a visit to California Donut.   This running four miles bit is so very great – it's the beginning of the beginning after the end of all ends.

Let's hear it for injury and recovery!  Holla!


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For your information, tomorrow (June 7th) is Daniel Boone and VCR Day, so please plan accordingly.  Also, for my future information, I ran one mile on May 30th, two miles on May 31st, and hiked around the Hollywood sign (for hours) on June 1st.  On June 4th, I ran three miles and visited the doc yet again.  He says I'm good to go.  And go I will!