Wednesday, May 02, 2007

The Pinball Machine in My Mind

My thoughts have been going in a jillion directions today. This seems to happen to me when I'm away from home and work for a while, especially when it involves new ideas and learning as it did at the retreat. I come home primed for action. I look around the house and see how far behind I am on the big things, but put that aside because I've missed too many days of daily stuff. I managed to get groceries and pay bills last night, write my post and read a few blogs. Today I went to work - 50 kajillion emails, papers on my desk, projects and plans midway through. After touching base with my admin assistant (for well over an hour), I caught up on emails and phone messages, sorted through papers, sent out emails to initiate a few new ideas I picked up, and did some proof-reading. I kept popping up to tell Virginia about other things I learned, what other colleges were doing, and to check on works-in-progress. Finally I put it to paper - I created a to-do list: 24 items - no wonder my thoughts were pin-balling around! Add to that thoughts about Riley graduating, trying to decide how much to taper this week, planning to leave for yet another long drive and long run...I'm feeling a little anxious, a little overwhelmed.

So then I ask myself, why are you reading blogs and writing a new post? Why don't you knock something off the home list? I already know the answer - it's just me and always has been. The more stress I feel, the more I resist. The more I am pushed, the slower I go. Eventually, the balls in my head will quit shooting around and fall into the right slots. I'll find my self in the zone - hitting my pace and holding it, and it will all get done. I'm not quite there today...maybe it'll come tomorrow. I'm a girl who likes routine - and this past weekend of travel, home one night and gone the next, has discombobulated me. I'm a little concerned that hitting the road again this weekend will make it early next week before I find that zone. I guess not running my normal amount could contribute to all of the above too. And maybe I'm a little tired and cranky. Ya think? Well, enough of the rambling. On to the running...

I ran for five miles with Rick this morning - just under an hour, nice and easy. It felt great to be out there again. I've been debating about tomorrow - I think I'll go out for at least four. I had some minor stiffness in the hips Monday morning, but it was gone by noon and I have felt fine ever since. My toes are looking good - I went band-aid free today for the first time since Mt. Si. (I did do the moleskin doughnut while running though).

I began reading Fixing Your Feet, and I'm only a few chapters into it and already have some ideas about what to fix. One thing is that I checked into my shoes a little more and found out this latest version had been tapered - the review I read said that if old model was a good fit, then get a wide version of the new model. Hmmmm. I haven't worn the Nimbus before, but following the advice of the book, I pulled out the original insoles and stood in them. My feet hang over on both sides - which is probably how I ended up with new blisters on the big toe joint. The running store guy never mentioned that they had been narrowed. I can't wait to finish the book and find out what else to look for.

Another discovery from the weekend - at the Expo I picked up a couple samples of Biofreeze. I'd left the stuff I usually use at home and thought I might want something. On the way home in the car, my legs were aching - they just wouldn't stop. So at a rest area somewhere in the middle of Oregon, I pulled out the sample and put it to use. I commented to Rob and Eric that I couldn't feel it and didn't think it would work. A little while later I felt the cold sensation start. And that was it. The aches were gone - completely gone. I actually slept that night - and I usually can't sleep the night after a marathon. I am exhausted, but I can't relax. No problems this time though. I'm going to get a tube of it and see if it works again. I'll report back after Vancouver.

And one last thing - something that I find hard to believe - I had two sub 11-minute miles and seven sub 12-minute miles in Eugene. All the rest were 12 to 13-something. I am amazed and thrilled - fast times for this back-of-packer and in a marathon! Wow. I am not going to plan for that or aim for that or anything in the next two. I'm going to do what I always do - go run by feel and see what shakes out at the end. Maybe it'll be my new fast, maybe not. I do need to finish in under six hours in Vancouver though - they have a time limit. I think I can do it.

Signing off from the edge of the continent, where the toes have healed, the mind is boggling and the next race is three days away!


Sarah Elaine said...

My thoughts pinball around on a constant basis. I'm glad to know that I am not the only one!

Congrats on the fast running time, too!

I have a big bottle of Biofreeze and I love it. My cats, however, do not love it. The fumes make their eyes water and then they puke. Just in case you have any critters at home. ;-)

The book on fixing feet sound really good. I think I'll put it on my list. Thanks!

wendy said...

Wow Michelle,

You have a lot going on in your head these days =)

I'm so glad to hear the toes are getting better, and also that you're clipping along at a great pace.

You mentioned asking yourself why you were reading blogs, etc. when you could be getting x,y,z done on your task list. You know what I think helps, I get a kitchen timer, put it on my computer desk, and give myself a set amount of time to play around on it, then I get back to the task list. I think that helps me be more efficient. Plus, I lay my planner out so it's open in the morning, and I can see what I need to do. I go through everything the night before, but sometimes I would forget by morning time! So, now it sits wide open, so I remember first thing how I need to get moving for the day. =) Anyhow, after this weekend, you have locals, so no more travel time loss, and I'm sure you'll be back to your normal routine. I'm still looking forward to a follow up run! I need to get them in while you're in the middle of marathon season, otherwise you'll be WAY too fast for me!

Darrell said...

Three days, YIKES! I haven't run a step since Sunday. I'm not sure I could if I wanted to.

Six hours - you can make it. I'm sure of that. Have another good race.

Wes said...

So much to do, so little time, and its hard sometimes getting the mind to shut down and relax.

So, you are going to be our resident foot expert!! Yea!! I think six hours is more than doable. You'll be awesome.

angie's pink fuzzy said...

a friend of mine says he always pushes things off to the last minute. he'll do other stuff when he knows he's got a kajillon other - arguably more important - things to do. and he's embraced it, knowing that this allows his mind to work the way it likes to work, and he's learned that he does better this way. so, maybe it's just how you work!

Juls said...

I know what you mean about being pushed against the wall (time wise) and still wanted to read and write your blog. It's an outlet that allows you to move on - so I guess it's okay.

Good luck on your race. I'm glad to hear that the toes are a little happier and that you had a couple of quicker miles. Hurray for you.

Michelle Sarabia said...

Michelle- yes, this is very addicting. I thought about stowing away in your car this weekend. The chaffing was bad the first day, but a lot better now.

JustRun said...

Your head sounds like mine a lot of the time. Somehow, I just KNEW you were a list maker! :)

Good luck this weekend- I'll be thinking of all you crazies. Haha.

Addy said...

I'm the same way about resisting 'to do lists' the more I have on them. Eventually things always work out though :) Good luck at your race this weekend! And congrats on the increased speeds :)

E-Speed said...

good luck this weekend!

Sarah said...

The way you've been going I don't think you'll have any problem finishing under 6 hrs. Have fun!

robtherunner said...

Who said that??? I'm hearing voices!!! Discombobulated, who is?

maniac hippo said...

I know how you feel, Michelle. Being away weekends really takes a toll and just leaves me off-balance in the rest of my life too. I often find myself retreating from it in similar ways to what you do.

I'm hoping you have an awesome race in Vancouver. What a fun place to go! You're going to need a new name pretty soon: "Back of the Pack" is starting to sound like false advertising.

Greetings from Sausalito! I found out they have hills here :-)

Anonymous said...

I hope things settle into place soon for you. I know that feeling - in fact, I'm kind of there right now.

I'm glad to hear that the toes are improving!

Take care and good luck on the next run!

Anne said...

I've got a roll of BioFreeze that does the trick when needed. Great stuff! I'm like you, million things to do and a graduation to plan and I am off my routine, but because of all work all the time. I need a vacation!

You'll be your ol' self routinewise in no time.

Anonymous said...

Good luck on the list of 24 items!

Hope you learn a lot from the book on fixing your feet.

And, we use biofreeze at work for our patients and works pretty well. So, I hope you find it successful again.

Journey to a Centum said...

Don't worry about Canada Michelle. I grew up on the border and I speak fluent Canadian. Maybe we can find a curling rink up in Cloverdale. If not perhaps we can find a hocky game to go to. I'll expain the blue line to you. Later we can go down to the Fraser River and watch the submarine races!

Wow! Four star maniacdom coming your way soon! You are my hero! Bad toes and all!

olga said...

Good luck tomorrwo, I am sure for those 6 hrs your thoguhts will calm down at some point:) Yeah, find a hockey rink and have fun - but AFTER the marathon!

Ryan said...

Playing catching-up...I'm happy to see things are going well! Quite well in fact....four back-to-back weekends!! Way-to-go! Gosh you don't slow down Congratulations on Mt. Si 50k finish and Eugene Marathon finish and good luck tomorrow. I hope those feet don't give you any trouble!

Happy Feet

Meghan said...

Yip-yip-horay for the healing feet! I am SO HAPPY to hear that!

Reading stuff on the Internet, like blogs, is therapuetic. It's the modern day version of sitting down with the newspaper, a magazine, or a book (Not that we don't do that stuff anymore!). Sometimes, you just can't stop reading the newspaper until you've read the whole thing!


RunnerGirl said...

Hope that you had a wonderful time this weekend!!!!

I hear you with doing things other than what is top priority, but much like Angie said above - somepeople just work better this way. Why fight it, right?

Cannot wait to hear a full report on this weekend!

PS - thank you for being my running kindred-spirit! You ahve given me so much motivation - thank you so muich for that and everything you do... you really are an inspiration to me!

Joe said...

A possible suggestion for summer reading..."Getting Things Done" by David Allen...huge help to me in the "pinball" mode.

So glad to hear the toe is improving!!

Great captures much.