Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Nine Hundred Thirty-Four

April 16, 2019
6.26 Miles in 1:04:28
Mood: Oh no, Lion. What did they do to you?
Soundtrack: Grouplove "Spreading Rumors" and "Big Mess"

Marble lions have been used in decorating the entrances to peoples homes for millennia. (I'm assuming this is true, as I didn't actually research this at all.) They can make your home look stately and amazing, but if you paint it black except for the eyes which you paint white with red dots for pupils, you are doing it wrong. Very, very wrong. This is bad.

Nine Hundred Thirty-Three

April 14, 2019
5.34 Miles in 54:03
Mood: Happy as a house.
Soundtrack: Vampire Weekend "This Life / Unbearably White"

Sometimes a home is a happy home because people put a lot of love and effort to make it a place where all are welcome and people are trusted and encouraged to find their way in the world together. Sometimes a home is a happy home because someone slaps eyes and a smiley face on it making it literally a happy home. I like both types of happy homes, but the first one is probably more significant, if you think about it.

Nine Hundred Thirty-Two

April 12, 2019
5.32 Miles in 56:05
Mood: The dichotomy of truck driving schmucks and very good horses.
Soundtrack: The Avett Brothers "True Sadness" and Father John Misty "I Love You, Honeybear"

After a few days of cold and rain/snow/sleet, the Highline Canal trail was in a fragile state, and some schmuck drove a truck over several miles of it leaving deep muddy grooves in the trail. I was annoyed at said schmuck, as those grooves in the trail were both unsightly and also made for slightly more difficult running. (Very slight, but my annoyance was real.)

I love this particular overlook and these four very good horses that live here. They were having a nice breakfast of whatever horses eat out of big metal tins, and I said hi to them as I stopped to take their photo. This was a lovely interaction. I give these horses five stars. These horses would never drive a truck over a muddy trail.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Nine Hundred Thirty-One

April 10, 2019
5.46 Miles in 1:00:06
Mood: Storm's a comin'
Soundtrack: Father John Misty "I Love You, Honeybear"

Yesterday was nearly 80 degrees, so naturally since I live in Colorado a blizzard was forecast for today. It wasn't supposed to move in until late morning, so I thought I'd be fine going out early this morning, but even at six the sky was totally gray and the rain was already starting to fall. I decided to hang around Southglenn in case the weather worsened severely. It didn't, but it was cool and wet all morning, so I didn't regret my decision to not wander off too far from home.

This was the first back to back days that I've run in close to a year, and my legs definitely felt a bit stiff. I was slow, but felt proud that I was able to get five and a half in despite some less than ideal conditions.

I only took two photos this morning. One was a picture of the gray sky, and it turned out pretty terribly, so I decided to use this picture of a tile wall at the Streets at Southglenn. There are lot of walls in this style at Southglenn, but they are all a little different, which is kind of cool in that they didn't just pick one pattern but when with an eclectic mix of patterns.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Nine Hundred Thirty

April 9, 2019
5.32 Miles in 57:21
Mood: Green beginning to show it's face around these parts.
Soundtrack: U2 "Songs of Experience" and "Songs of Innocence"

I took this picture, because it is proof that spring is slowly making it's way on the scene. Most of the trees on the Highline Canal are still barren, but this one has some lovely green buds. Of course, we are supposed to get hit with a snow storm tomorrow, so I hope that the buds are not budding too soon. Still, it's nice to see some green on the trail and even more nice to leave your house at 6 in the morning have the temps already be above 50.

I broke my seven mile run streak, but that was because I had a meeting at work that required me to be there earlier than normal, and I was instructed in no uncertain terms to NOT be there late, so I cut it short so that I would make it in time. I probably had another mile and a half or so in me if I had the time. I was super slow today, but I did the same technique of pushing myself to goal destinations to try and get a decent amount of mileage, and overall I'm happy with my results.

Nine Hundred Twenty-Nine

April 7, 2019
7.14 Miles in 1:13:32
Mood: Pushing myself to 7 again!
Soundtrack: Everclear "So Much For The Afterglow"

Two consecutive runs over 7 miles! Plus temps in the 60's! A gorgeous Sunday at my favorite park, and I was feeling good. Also, I took a picture of a lawn lion. Good times.

Nine Hundred Twenty-Eight

April 4, 2019
7.53 Miles in 1:19:44
Mood: Push it!
Soundtrack: Green Day "American Idiot"

I decided I was going to get a decent amount of distance on this one. I made that happen by pushing through when I was beginning to feel tired and rather than stopping to rest I would set a goal for myself. For example, I knew that there was park about a mile ahead, so I was going to keep going until I got to that park regardless of how tired I was. After that, I pushed to the next goal and kept doing so until I actually had a seven plus mile run under my belt. It wasn't fast, but it at least I finally got back to what I used to consider normal distance.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Nine Hundred Twenty-Seven

April 2nd, 2019
4.71 Miles in 49:39
Mood: Hurrah for Spring!
Soundtrack: The Walking Deadcast and Twenty One Pilots "Blurryface"

I slept poorly last night, so this run was done with not nearly enough sleep and I could feel it. I had a hard time sustaining even a mediocre pace, but at least I managed to get myself up and out so I could see the sun rise and enjoy a gorgeous Colorado morning. The results of my run were a little disappointing, but the experience was still pretty dang good. I'm so happy that Spring is starting to declare itself more boldly...I do not miss Winter.

Nine Hundred Twenty-Six

March 31, 2019
5.41 Miles in 55:04
Mood: Good dog!
Soundtrack: Mumford & Sons "Delta"

I saw this dog as I was running, and then I passed it, and I was bummed that I didn't take a picture, so as I was beginning my second lap and saw him again, I immediately asked the owners if I could take a photo, because this dog is the coolest being on earth. I love this dog and his bright blue track suit. He is a hero and a national treasure, and I'm just happy that I live on the same planet as he (or possibly she) does. This is a good dog.

Nine Hundred Twenty-Five

March 28, 2019
5.01 Miles in 52:15
Mood: Glad to have my trail back.
Soundtrack: Barenaked Ladies "Barenaked Ladies are Me" and "Barenaked Ladies are Men"

I was so excited to learn that the trail that leads directly to DeKoevend Park from my house has finally reopened. It has been closed for months and months as they were working on a bridge, and that construction has kept me from running directly onto the Highline Canal trail. I had to keep going through the Streets at Southglenn to get there, which slowed me quite a bit and made for a less productive run...that, thankfully, is over.

I was so happy that the bridge has been completed, that I took a picture of the mushroom graffiti that was adorning the underside of the bridge for today's photo. If I were Mario, I'd double in size with that thing.

Nine Hundred Twenty-Four

March 25, 2019
3.41 Miles in 36:42
Mood: Moab, meh. Arches, spectacular.
Soundtrack: Moab Street Sounds

Another state is in the books, and I love adding new states. With this run in Utah, I have now put Colorado, Kansas, Washington, South Dakota, Illinois, Arizona, New Mexico, Louisana, Mississippi, Iowa, Florida, Washington and Utah into the blog. That's 13 states, although Utah seemed more beautiful than unlucky. This run took me down the main drag in Moab as well as a smaller side street, the natural areas around Moab are transcendent, but the town itself is just okay. It wasn't awful, and I'm sure I could have found nicer places within it to run, but the part I ran was a little underwhelming. When only a few miles away you are able to see Arches National Park, it's hard for the little burgh just to the South to measure up.

It was a nice enough run, although I totally forgot my earbuds, so I had to do it without music to accompany me, which was a bummer. Also, I got up very early in the morning, so the first half of the run was done in mostly darkness, which made the town more depressing, once you can see the mountains that surround you when the light begins to show up, Moab is much prettier. The photo for this run had to be thins little cabin with an artistic rendition of a tornado engulfing it. This was easily the best bit of local art I encountered.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Nine Hundred Twenty-Three

March 22, 2019
5.62 Miles in 58:03
Mood: Spooky cloud moon!
Soundtrack: The Rural Alberta Advantage "Departing" and "Hometowns"

The moon poking through the clouds this morning as I left the house was really awesome. It came through pretty well in the picture, but as always, nothing compares to being there.

I got tantalizingly close to reaching six miles for the first time in a very long time, but towards the end of my run my blood sugar dropped, and I wasn't able to sustain a run for very long and I fell just short. Still, this one was pretty good and although I'm still so horrifically slow, I feel like I'm very very slowly getting better.

Nine Hundred Twenty-Two

March 19, 2019
4.94 Miles in 50:48
Mood: Fondly wishing winter goodbye.
Soundtrack: The Head and The Heart "Signs of Light"

I am not sure why, but I love this picture. It was the final day of winter, and the clouds were just so big and fluffy, plus the sun is lighting up the trees in the background. I love it.

Nine Hundred Twenty-One

March 17, 2019
4.13 Miles in 42:30
Mood: Amused by an angry old man.
Soundtrack: U2 - "How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb" and "No Line on the Horizon"

I find it hilarious that I unintentionally listened to U2 on Saint Patrick's Day. That is quite a coincidence if you do it by accident.

As for this run, it was a fine day at Wash Park, and I felt fine as I ran, but the thing I will always remember about it the most was the old guy who held open the bathroom door for me and as he did so said, "You won't believe what they did in there. Bastard kids!" This dude was very angry. The bathroom did smell like spray paint and was a huge mess, but at least the graffiti was kinda artistic. It had the light bulb as seen above, and it also had three skulls. One with x's over the eyes that said "See", one with an arrow and x's going through the ears that said "Hear" and one with x's over the mouth that said "Speak". I'm not sure what the point is, but at least it had a theme.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Nine Hundred Twenty

March 15, 2019
4.41 Miles in 48:04
Mood: Big burgers and flat tires.
Soundtrack: The Head and The Heart "Signs of Light"

That is a very large picture of a hamburger. It's a little hard to tell from this photo, but just know that this hamburger is definitely larger than I am.

This run started out okay...I was confining myself to Southglenn because we had an intense snow storm a couple of days ago. They called it a bomb cyclone. This sounds like a fake term, and you know that everyone thought that because every time the news discussed it, they assured us it was a scientific term. What it meant to us in real terms is a whole lot of ice and snow, and I was sent home halfway through the day on Wednesday. The remaining snow and ice made the normal streets kind of unrunnable, but Southglenn is always clear because of commerce and the need for clear sidewalks.

The biggest bummer of this run is that it was cut short by a call from my wife who let me know that one of our vehicles had a flat tire. This is an unfun way to end a run that had felt pretty good. I was going to make it to five miles easy...maybe even six. Oh well, next time!

Nine Hundred Nineteen

March 12, 2019
5.11 Miles in 53:24
Mood: Potted Metallic Peacock
Soundtrack: Twenty One Pilots "Trench"

I was still pretty tired from the time change (we "sprung forward" over the weekend), but with the forecast showing a big snowstorm headed my way, I figured I better get up and out while the weather was still decent. Felt good about getting five miles in, although my photo today was a little lackluster...just a potted metallic peacock, which is more fun to type than it is to look at.

Nine Hundred Eighteen

March 10, 2019
3.46 Miles in 34:09
Soundtrack: Lupe Fiasco "Lasers"

There was a giant inflatable polar bear in Wash Park. That was by far the most memorable thing about this run, other than the fact that I apparently forgot to end my run on my Nike Plus app, and while I didn't get any extra mileage from driving home, it did make my map look ridiculous.

Nine Hundred Seventeen

March 8, 2019
4.80 Miles in 50:45
Mood: Saying hello to an old friend.
Soundtrack: Vaudeville Etiquette "Debutantes & Dealers"

I actually got out and ran on the Highline Canal! The ground was hard, but the snow had melted, and it felt pretty amazing to be out on my favorite trail again. I haven't been able to do that much lately. Plus it was an amazing spring day. The kind that gives me hope that winter won't last forever, and that pink trees are just around the corner.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Nine Hundred Sixteen

March 5, 2019
3.59 Miles in 38:09
Mood: Rushed and chilled, but feeling good all the same.
Soundtrack: The Avett Brothers "Mignonette"

I didn't have much time for this run, because I needed to be back to take my daughter to school, so that inspired me to get out and running quickly. For the second run in a row, I felt like I had more in me, but didn't have time to actually get those miles run. Still, the short amount of time I had felt good, despite the fact that it was 7 degrees outside when I started. I was bundled up, and barely felt the cold.

Also, I swear I'm not going to make every photo from now on a picture of Knolls Park from above, but for the third straight time (non-Wash Park division) this was definitely the best photo I took.

Monday, March 4, 2019

Nine Hundred Fifteen

March 3, 2019
3.50 Miles in 36:01
Mood: Running with Blizzards.
Soundtrack: Maggie Rogers "Heard it in a Past Life"

I woke up early Sunday morning considering running, but it had snowed all night and the temperature at the time I got up was a balmy 5 degrees. I decided to head back to bed and then go for a run that afternoon. It was slightly warmer when I did go, but it was also snowing pretty solidly. You can't see the snow in this picture, but believe me, it was snowing. At one point it was coming down so hard and I passed another park jogger and thought to myself, "What are we doing?"

It was one of those days at Wash Park where there were about as many cross country skiers using the park as joggers. The thing is, once you get used to it, it actually felt really good. There was ice on the ground, but it wasn't overly slick, and the chill keeps you moving. I quit after two laps because my phone's battery was almost completely drained and because I felt like I SHOULD stop running due to the weather. I wasn't all that tired, and felt like I had another lap or two in me, but decided not to push it, especially since I'd lose the ability to track the run, catch Pokemon, and listen to music once the phone died.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Nine Hundred Fourteen

February 28, 2019
4.47 Miles in 48:18
Mood: Holy moly, nice sunrise!
Soundtrack: The Walking Deadcast

Two days after taking a photo of the sun rising at Cherry Knolls Park on a foggy day where you could hardly see it, I took another picture of it which was wildly different. This time, the sunrise was spectacular. Crazy what a difference two days time can make.

This run took awhile to get going, because I was distracted and slowly walking through Southglenn for a good 20 minutes before I finally decided to get myself in gear. It then turned into a pretty decent feeling run, although my attempt to run on the Highline Canal trail was very short lived, as it was too icy and treacherous to run on without the threat of turning an ankle. I decided against that and resigned myself to running on the streets, which was fine, but I do miss the Highline and haven't really been able to hit it up property since making my return to being a two legged exerciser rather than a two wheeled one. Spring is coming, so I can wait, I guess.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Nine Hundred Thirteen

February 26, 2019
4.51 Miles in 49:36
Mood: Watch out, someone is mangling toys!
Soundtrack: Fleet Foxes "Helplessness Blues"

It is hardly ever foggy in Denver, so waking up to this scene is kind of awesome. I was able to stare at the sun as it rose, because there was so much fog, it was only giving off a warm glow. Turns out, the sun comes up pretty dang fast when you can watch it rising. It looked particularly cool from this vantage point overlooking the park.

This run was once again circling Streets at Southglenn. The theme for this particular day was mangled toys, as I came across a mangled lego minifigure and a strange monster toy with it's head chopped off. The lego man was a police officer, and he was scratched up badly and missing a leg, and all I could think was someone yelling into their radio, "Officer Down!" The monster toy was sitting atop a trash can, and it looked menacing. I didn't care for that.

Nine Hundred Twelve

February 24, 2019
4.75 Miles in 49:32
Mood: Warmer than I expected, despite all the ice.
Soundtrack: Mumford & Sons "Delta"

Once again, Wash Park was a snowy mess. At least they do a good job of removing snow from the street that loops the park. So while I wasn't able to run on the trail that goes around the outer edge of the park, at least I could still run there.

I was bundled up in way too much clothing for this run. I thought it might be freezing, so I was wearing three layers and long underwear, and it turned out to be a decently warm (by February standards) morning. There was still a lot of snow and a lot of ice, but at least I wasn't freezing cold, and with the layers I put on, I was actually a trifle too warm.

The best thing I saw on this run was this tree pictured above which looks exactly like the Whomping Willow from the Harry Potter movies, and I really really liked it.

Friday, February 22, 2019

Nine Hundred Eleven

February 22, 2019
5.35 Miles in 58:27
Mood: Feeling good on a Friday.
Soundtrack: The Walking Deadcast / Slaid Cleaves "Sorrow and Smoke"

My calves were aching so bad when I finished this run, but in a good way. As if they were thankful for having been pushed so hard. You wouldn't recognize it by my distance or speed, but this felt like a very strong run, and I was very happy with it when it was over. I find myself staying at Streets at Southglenn when I run lately for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it allows me to load up on Pokemon Go supplies, which is very helpful. Secondly, I can get in miles, but if I suddenly feel wiped out, I will not find myself miles away from home, which is a bad feeling when you have no choice but to meander back home feeling wiped.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Nine Hundred Ten

February 20, 2019
4.21 Miles in 48:51 (Although I think I got 5 miles)
Mood: Forced indoors, but making the best of it.
Soundtrack: Jack White "Lazaretto"

It was six degrees outside this morning. I prefer to not die of hypothermia, so I drove to the rec center to run circles on a track. Track running is a little boring, but it still beats a treadmill, plus I get to become part of the rec center track ecosystem which is interesting. It mostly consists of elderly people walking around the track, although there was younger guy who was faster than me running around for the first half of my run...he quit after about 2 miles, so I say I won.

I forgot to take a picture at the rec center to use for this run, so this photo is a picture of the ceiling at my work the same day as my run. It seemed sufficiently boring to express just how dull running around in a tenth of a mile circle can be. Speaking of which, this track is a tenth of a mile, and I counted very specifically that I ran 50 laps, so my distance should be 5 miles, and yet I only registered 4.21. I chalk that up to GPS struggling when you're not running in straight lines, but rather tight circles. At least my map looks cool.

There are some interesting things about running the track, which include the little room just off the track where older people do their stretching classes. I think it might be pilates. I'm not sure, but that would be my guess. It's fun to watch them exercise as I fly past their room, and their body heat makes that one little section of the track much warmer than the rest which is honestly a little chilly. Also, a great thing about running on a track in February is that I was able to run in shorts, which is something I won't get to do outdoors until late April or early May.