Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Time to start blogging again...

So as I've struggled to motivate to run since Boston, I've also struggled to chronicle my struggles in it would seem that my running and my writing about my running are somehow connected?

This is also a particularly difficult part of the year for me.  My school year is running down, and I find as my students become less and less motivated to do their work, I have to ramp up my motivation and enthusiasm to try to compensate.   The effort tends to leave me a bit drained by the time I leave school in the afternoon and I have a hard time mustering up the energy to lace 'em up and hit the road.

In addition, my chorus is preparing for a big competition in early July out in Portland, OR, and there's a lot of work to be done to be ready for weekly rehearsals.  To make matters more interesting, I just got promoted to the front row, so I have additional preparation for that.

Add to that and the lack of any semblance of a training schedule (right now), and I've got a whole big bunch of First World Problems (thanks, Gingerfoxx!!!) getting in my way.

The fact is, school will be over in 26 days, my chorus competition will be over on July 6th, and I'll be back on a training schedule to get ready for the ING Hartford Marathon starting on June 10th, so everything will be going back to "normal" again very soon.........and that means NO MORE EXCUSES!!!!!

So before I pick my little guy up from school today and get him ready for his baseball game, I'm going to get out there and run......and I'm going to keep running..........because it keeps me sane, balanced, and fit.  Because it helps me to be a better teacher, singer, friend, brother, uncle, son, father, husband, and man.

Because it's a part of me.......and it's something I simply love to do!

See you all out there on the road!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

I'm back!

"But wait", you say......."Bill, you never really left, so how can you now be back?????"

Because it's a metaphor, silly.......I didn't really leave, but I was definitely struggling with a bit of post-Boston blues which, when combined with a lack of a training plan, left me having a hard time getting out and running again.

Well, I've run 3 times so far this week and I'm back to looking forward to I guess that means I'm BACK, BABY!!!!    YEAH!!!!!!!

So to all my new blogger-buddies out there, I thank you for all your kind words of encouragement and support.  This particular corner of the "blogosphere" is a really cool place to hang out, and you all are the reason why, so thanks!

Now.......anybody up for a run with a slow, middle-aged, middle school Social Studies teacher who is going to start training soon for his 3rd marathon????   Give me a call!  :>)

Monday, May 7, 2012

Rock Bottom (an irrational love story, of sorts..)

One of the things you need to know about me is that I'm, at heart, an irrational being.  First off, being a teacher is an irrational career choice (particularly if it's your 2nd career!).....and teaching middle school is even more irrational.   But beyond my career choice, there is one particular part of my personality that indicates just how deep irrationality runs in me......

And that's my love for the Boston Red Sox.

Cubs fans may now take the title, but the Red Sox made their fans wait 86 years between titles.  Time for entire generations to live out their entire lives getting their hearts broken by the Olde Towne Team again and again, all without the wonderful resolution that their World Series titles in 2004 and 2007 provided.  I can only lay claim to having been in love with this team since 1970, so for me it was a mere 34 years waiting for a championship.  After they won again in 2007, I was content for them to go back to their losing ways......but who am I trying to kid?  I still live and die with this cannot erase an irrational love affair with a fancy cannot be refuses to die.

Which bring me to this current season.

Very early on, the new manager said that the team had hit "rock bottom" after they started the year with a series of losses at home.  The team then went on the road and had a very successful road trip, only to return home again to start losing once more.  As far as I'm concerned, they hit "rock bottom" again last night, losing to the Baltimore Orioles in 17 innings.  17 innings?  Really?  This game lasted 6 hours and 7 minutes, which was how long it took me to run the Boston Marathon, get my shiny blanket and bottle of Gatorade, find my bags, reunite with my wife and son, and walk the 1/2 mile to the train station to go home......this game went on so long that both teams ran out of pitchers and for the first time since 1925, had to both use position players as pitchers.  It was compelling and ridiculous, but I couldn't stop I's irrational!    As it was the last game of a losing homestand, it was my hope that my beloved team had truly hit "rock bottom" for real and will now begin winning.....

So what does that have to do with my running, you ask??????

Because I believe I hit "rock bottom" today......

You see, after reading so many of all your wonderful blog posts, telling your compelling stories of your weekend triumphs in races ranging from 5K's to marathons and beyond, I was really staring to get psyched to get out there and start training again.  The 3 weeks since Boston have been a bit hazy for me, training-wise, so I'm trying to get things moving again.  I really believed today would be the day.

And I had one of those know the kind..........where you just can't seem to get it going.  You think you'll warm up, loosen up, and start to feel better, but you never do.  I describe it to my wife as the point where my body "unlocks".......when you get into the flow and the run feels like you're floating effortlessly.  That moment never came. 

Nothing felt right straight from the moment I left the driveway and headed out.  Ankles were cracky.....knees and quads were a bit seemed too tight......shirt was clinging too much.......and I never reached that point of feeling good.  Every part of the run was a struggle.......uphills seemed steeper.....downhills seemed shorter......and the wind was ALWAYS in my face.  Considering how little fun I was having, I'm surprised I stuck it out to the end, but to my credit I didn't quit.

Tomorrow will be another chance to start again........and I remain hopeful.   

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Another week begins

So once again, I sit here on a Sunday night.....doing the laundry.....checking my plan book for the school week ahead.  Basically taking stock before the week begins.

Now that the first week of May has come and gone, and it's now been 3 weeks since the Boston Marathon, I feel ready to actually start training again.  I don't have a schedule to work from, and I won't start training for Hartford until the 2nd week of June, but I think shooting for 25-30 miles a week over the next few weeks should be attainable, providing I stay focused. 

And therein lies the the school year winds inexorably down to a close, the pressure to get things done becomes more and more prevalent.  Curriculum needs to be completed, and as I'm going to be changing teams next year (and moving from teaching only 8th grade to a "split" team teaching both 7th and 8th grade), I've got preparations to start making for the coming school year.  It's going to be a busy few weeks!

So I think the best thing for me to do, running-wise, between now and the end of school is to get back in the swing of things and get out 3-4 times during the week and both days on the weekends.    A very simple I just need to shut up and DO IT!!!!

Congrats to all of you who got out there and raced this weekend, like Sara ( and Felice (, as well as all of you who just got out there and ran just because....

Have a great week everyone!