Monday, June 20, 2011

Do you really NEED all of that????

Today's Miles: 3.5 miles on Tread-Dread because there were some NASTY thunderclouds out this morning and being struck by lightning was not on my schedule for today..... Of course this was after I ran to & from my neighbor's house to take back her dog that's scared of storms.

That’s the question I ask myself every time I pack a suitcase and zip it up, then pick it up while trying not to break my back.

The next question is – Did I accidently pack my dog because this bag is H..E..A..V..Y..!!???  (Yes, my dogs watch me pack every time. They lie there with a pissed-off, pouty face because Momma leaves every time this big tan bag goes on the bed, and they don’t like it. I’m certain they’ve considered climbing in that bag and one day I'm going to be in Randomtown, PA; check into a hotel; unzip my bag; and one of them will climb out of that bag, with a pissed off look on their face because they've been zipped up in a bag all day!)

All of this leads me to the question I’m sure men have been asking since the beginning of time……….

Why do women need more crap men? 

I’m certain that when Cavemen were packing up and moving on to the next cave, it took the Cavewomen 3 days to pack up their clubs and bear skins. And they also needed to take along some rocks they found that are perfect for cutting up meat; and 10 lbs of nuts and dried berries in case they get hungry along the way; and some firewood because where they are going may not have any good dried out wood; well…you get the idea.

After 2 years of living out of a suitcase, I feel like I’ve become fairly good at packing only the essentials….1 set of clothes for each day (I will sometimes wear the same pair of pants twice…gasp!); something to sleep in; and a set of workout clothes for however many days I will be running that week; running shoes; and toiletries…and of course an extra pair of undies and socks.....’cause you never know.

I pack these things, and my bag will weigh 50lbs. A man could pack the same thing, and he could fit it all in a shoebox! Why is that? I just don’t understand this weird phenomenon!?

I went for a ‘long’ run on Saturday – 4 miles. Well…it’s a long run for me…don’t judge me…I’m building my mileage! Anyway, I left later than my planned 6 a.m. More like 7:30 a.m. So what’s the big deal???

I'LL TELL YOU THE BIG DEAL….about 10 degrees and 15% more humidity! Oh, and don’t forget the unrelenting direct sunlight and the head wind of 10mph. THAT’S THE BIG DEAL!!!!

So, I knew on my long run I would need a water break. Problem with that: I was running a loop, through a residential area. Which I know most of my neighbors, but I’m certain if I stopped and knocked on their door for some water, I would probably win the “Weirdest Neighbor” Award. And leaving a cooler on the side of the road is not an option because people around here would be like “Hey, someone threw out a perfectly good cooler. I could fit a six pack in that!” Or it would get peed on by a dog....Or the bottle peed in by some prankster.....

So that left 2 options. Option 1) get Mark to deliver some water to me ½ way through my run. A good option, and he’s such a fabulous husband that he might actually do that for me! But, I’m holding that card for when I’m on really long runs. Option 2) pack it. This option includes wearing a fuel belt. Which if you don’t know what that is….imagine a fanny pack with extra pockets for little 4oz bottles of water.

No matter how hard I try – making a fuel belt look cool just….doesn’t….work. Oh well. I rocked that fuel belt for my 4 mile run, and I wouldn’t have survived without it! I NEEDED every ounce of water and Gatorade I had on me…..and the 4 dog treats I need to get past the German Shepherd, Black Lab “Lucy” and the 2 snarly little Jack Russell/Beagle mixes!

While I was running and trying to get used to running with all this crap hanging off my hips which possibly slowed me down more than the heat, humidity and sun…..I remembered seeing a lady at the Knoxville Marathon warm-up area last year. She was running the marathon I think. During most races, this one included, there are many water/Gatorade and even some GU or Gel stops (GU is a weird non-liquid electrolyte/calorie/sugar/caffeine thing that’s essential on long races…feels like Jell-O that’s been through a blender, tastes like stale Gatorade). So for my run, I had me and my iPod. What more could you NEED? 

This lady had EVERYTHING you could possibly need: a fuel belt with extra pockets for keys, ID, cell phone, & money; 4-4oz bottles of water; a hand held drink container (about 20oz) with Gatorade; at least 7 packs of GU; a poncho (plus the light jacket she was wearing); a hat that had some Sports Beans (Jelly beans with a punch) in a side pocket; and something large packed in the ‘fanny’ part of the fuel belt. My guess was extra socks, extra undies, and a first aid kit...'cause you never know. She was ready to run a race on a deserted road! She was P.R.E.P.A.R.E.D. for Everything… I felt grossly unprepared standing next to her.

It’s funny how we all define what we NEED to take with us…wherever that may be.

Next weekend, I may leave notes in my neighbor’s mailboxes and ask them if I can leave a bottle of water in their mailbox for a few hours. I NEED water/Gatorade on those long runs. I do not NEED the aggravation of extra stuff hanging on me while I run. And despite what Bear Grylls may believe, I don't think pee is a good electrolyte when dehydrated.

 Gotta run.....

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