Showing posts with label decisions. Show all posts
Showing posts with label decisions. Show all posts

Friday, November 11, 2016

Neighborhood walkers explain Tuesday's results

Good decisions require good judgment  
Today's run (street): 3.2 miles

Happy Veteran's Day.  This is a holiday that actually means something and I always take the time to appreciate the men and women who have served our country. I'm disappointed that our country will soon be led by a man who has neither served nor sacrificed, but thinks it's okay to insult Gold Star families and expresses disrespect for war heroes, "because they got captured."

As I ran through my neighborhood this morning, I thought about Tuesday's election result and the fact that close to half of American voters voluntarily chose a woman-hating racist over his far more qualified opponent. That had made no sense to me until I rounded a corner and saw two people walking abreast on the right side of the street.

It clearly didn't occur to this pair that they had better, smarter and safer choices, such as the sidewalk. If they absolutely had to walk on the street, they had the option of staying on the left side where they could see oncoming cars rather than trust the drivers behind them. I'd never understood why people will make such clearly bad decisions until I saw the election results on Wednesday morning. I finally understand that many people just aren't smart enough to anticipate the consequence of their actions.

Do I think people who voted in the president-elect are stupid? How about people who walk on the right side of the road and trust that distracted drivers aren't going to run them down? That's not for me to say. But I will suggest that both are examples of bad judgment, something usually correlated to low intelligence.

Friday, February 1, 2013

A big change provides more time to run

If it's all the same, I'd prefer a Garmin 610
Yesterday's run (treadmill): 3.1 miles
Today's run (street): 3.4 miles

After 20 years with my company, I am about to take early retirement. While I'll miss all my office friends, I'm excited to be in a position to retire while I'm still in my prime. My big decision now is what to do next. I can do something completely different, or stay in familiar territory. I'm in no rush to decide. Besides having more time to spend with my wife and kids, I'll be able to run longer distances on weekday mornings. No more train schedules to meet.

Yesterday morning, the winds were still blowing at speeds over 25 MPH. I decided to stay indoors and did a progressive speed run on the treadmill. Today, despite the cold, I got outside and ran around the neighborhood. It may have been the lack of work stress that pushed me along today, or the fact that I had to be home in time for a business call, but I achieved my fastest overall pace in two months.

I've been overwhelmed with correspondence and calls related to this change, so it hasn't exactly been relaxing. But it has been energizing. Perhaps I'll restart my Runner's Tech Review blog now that I'll (possibly) have more time. I'm going to need a new pair of running shoes soon. Brooks, Saucony, New Balance, are you listening?

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Indecision leads to a workout choice

Today's run (treadmill): 23 minutes

Sometimes, if you wait long enough, your decisions will be made for you. I had an 8:00 AM doctor's appointment this morning and got up at 6:00. I thought I had plenty of time to run, shower and then get to my destination. I knew that the weather was due to change today, with driving rains expected this afternoon. Given that possibility, I figured I'd get in a neighborhood run while I could. 

Two hours is a deceptive time span. It seems like all the time in the world until there's no time left. I had a leisurely cup of coffee while I watched the news. I checked the time and felt I was on track. Suddenly it was 6:30 and I realized I needed at least 10 minutes to get my outside running gear prepared. That would leave me only 45 minutes to run, shower and dress in order to get to my doctor's office by 8:00.

It was clear that the window for an an outside run had closed, so I ran upstairs and quickly dressed for an indoor workout. With limited time I cranked up the speed, averaging about 7 MPH, per the display. By the time I was done, I was ready for rest, but there was no time left to do that. A quick shower followed and off I went. I walked into the office at 7:58.

I regret missing out on an outside run today and next time I'll be more aware of just how short two hours can be. Still, I had a vigorous (if short) workout and may not have gone as hard as that if I'd had more time. Did I make to right decision? Or was the right one made for me?

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Making the decisions to run

Today's run (street): 4.5 miles

If you see a fork in the road, take it.
This morning I faced some minor decisions about when, what, where and how I would run. I usually have the details of the next morning's run mapped out in my head the night before, but I struggled with indecisiveness today.

My first decision was whether to go out in the dark or wait until the sun poked through enough to allow me to run without a headlamp and reflective vest. I had awoken around 5:00 AM and made a pot of coffee but by 6:00 I began thinking about getting going on my run. I decided to wait until 6:30 when there would be adequate light, and I put on my bright yellow Adidas jersey to ensure my visibility.

My second decision was where to run. I love my neighborhood but I sometimes find the scenery a little too familiar. I thought about the trails at Bethpage or Stillwell but I didn't really feel like driving to another location to run. I settled on a route that followed the outside edges of my neighborhood, a compromise between proximity and novelty.

My last decision before I left was which pair of shoes to pick. I ran in the Mirages yesterday to give me a little extra protection. I considered them again for today and then thought about the even more cushioned Adrenalines. Ultimately, I chose the Hattori's that have served me well for 200 miles and counting. As much as I like the protection and stability of the other two pairs, the Hattori's still provide me the lightest and most connected experience with the road.

I felt great for the first two miles, even though I had some challenges with the abysmal condition of the sidewalks on South Oyster Bay Road. I encountered broken concrete slabs jutting up at 40° angles plus brush and branches that haven't been cleared since Clinton was president. That section does force some agility, but I wasn't in the mood for it today.

Just south of the LIE overpass is a small road that leads into neighborhood #2.  I followed that entry point and covered a couple of miles before I headed back towards home. I had run fairly slow, owing to the high humidity, and I decided to pick up the pace from there. My last decision during my run was whether to take the fast way back or extend the run a few more minutes by following a longer, more uphill road. That was what I chose to do, imagining that I was coming through my last quarter mile of a race and pushing my pace accordingly.

I ended up running this route about 30 seconds slower per mile than my usual pace for that distance. This didn't bother me because I know by now that the humidity affects my performance enough to make that difference. It was a tough run today, but in terms of my decisions, I regret nothing.

Friday, March 4, 2011

The Half decision

Today's run (street) 2.65 miles

I was fully prepared to run today and had no trouble getting out the door this morning. I'm back to my weekday routine, energized and motivated. I knew it was cold outside (19 degrees) and wore three layers but the chilly air was still somewhat of a surprise. As I ran up the road that borders my neighborhood to the east it occurred to be that we're about two weeks away from the Vernal Equinox. It sure didn't feel like spring at that moment.

I was originally planning to run midday with JQ but his schedule didn't work so that's why I decided to go out this morning. I ran well, my stride felt efficient and my form was good. My pace seemed faster than my usual morning tempo but my Garmin said otherwise -- mid 9:00. That pace seems to work for me over longer distances and I thought today about the half marathon. I've decided that despite its un-scenic course I'm going to run the RXR LI Half Marathon on May 1st. In terms of logistics and the opportunity to run with people I know it makes the best sense. So no mountain climbs, river views, ocean side paths or greenery (although the course does wend past Eisenhower Park) but it's still 13.1 miles with a finish line.

Training has begun!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Indecision is a runner's prerogative

Hook Half race course
Today's workout (elliptical): 25 minutes

In the business world I need to be decisive. There is constant change in media technology and my colleagues and I work to adapt as quickly as the business requires. As a runner I don't need to be decisive. I can spend months considering a new running shoe before I buy it. When I'm out on the trails I usually decide my route as I go along. There's no penalty for choosing the wrong path since I'm likely to get lost no matter which trail I pick. My current case of runner's indecision centers on choosing my first half marathon. Which one to run? My poll is favoring the Brooklyn Half and that was my personal choice but registration has closed so I'm locked out.

There's the George Wodicka Hook Half Marathon in Congers, NY (Rockland County) that routes along the Hudson and is supposed to be a beautiful course. The race has two negatives though: it's a long drive to get to the race and part of the course goes up and down Hook mountain, highest spot in Rockland County. People I know who have run this race talk about the run up Hook the way I talk about Widow Hill on the Great Cow Harbor course. I shouldn't admit it but 13.1 miles plus a mountain climb scares me a little. The simplest choice is the RXR LI Half Marathon. It's close by, and I have some friends who are also planning to run it. Plus, the race date is May 2nd which would give me a few extra weeks to train.

I'm going to give it some more thought and then decide. Or maybe I'll just keep thinking about it.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Taking path B (make that tread B)

I awoke from a pleasant night's sleep to the percussive sound of rain on the bathroom skylight. I needed to make a decision whether to brave the rain or to stay indoors and use the elliptical or (shudder) the treadmill. I didn't run yesterday and I skipped Monday because it's my rest day. Sunday's run was a slow, short run with my daughter so I'd really only had two cardio workouts since Saturday. I knew I needed a workout and I surprised myself by choosing the treadmill. My decision to run on the treadmill was related to a logic process that I use often during my weekend runs: if path A is similar but easier than path B, take path B. For example, If one road leading home extends the run an extra half mile or has a challenging hill while the other is shorter, flatter, etc., why not accept the tougher option? That's why I chose the treadmill.
It was the first time that I stepped on our treadmill since June. I've been running outdoors at 4:00 AM since then and using the elliptical when conditions forced me to stay inside. I ran on a treadmill while up in Boston a few weeks ago which helped prepare me psychologically for today's experience. The display on our decade-old treadmill is flaky so I set the pace according to my readiness to run. I wore my Garmin 50 to track my distance and pace but I didn't refer to it during my run except to check on time elapsed. Treadmill time is brutally slow. With no distractions the minutes can pass like hours. It really wasn't as bad as I'd remembered it but I missed the experience of changing scenery.
With no information about my pace I moved along fairly well. I ended up covering 2.5 miles at an 8:34 pace - much better than I usually do on the streets at that time. I have every hope that tomorrow morning's weather will be more hospitable. While the treadmill may be a tougher path than the outdoor option that is one case where I'll always choose path A.

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