Saturday, 9 May 2009

Things that break

I just busted my lawnmower halfway through my front yard. I've now managed to give my yard a mohawk. Yeah.

I managed to get through the back yard, for the first time this year. I think the thick grass did it in. Within minutes of getting around the front, the motor made a weird popping noise and cut out. When I touched the underside I got one hell of an electric shock. I'm fairly certain it's done.

So now I stop. I started this morning cleaning the kitchen in preparation for out-of-town company, who as it turns out is having car problems and doesn't want to risk the trip. I spent the afternoon, with my unexpectedly earned free time, playing a game. Now, I'm bogging with a mohawk yard. Isn't it funny that you can go days without writing only to begin the moment something frustrates you? I'm taking my frustrations out on the keyboard with my still-tingling fingers. At least for the remainder of the day I will have a constant reminder that I need to go borrow my neighbour's machine. But I've lost my mojo.

Now I don't even want to write - it kinda hurts.


Tuesday, 5 May 2009

What the hell was I thinking?

May has arrived. The month they announce the winners of the Olympic Torch Relay contest. I entered for a couple of reasons, one was the simple idea of carrying the Olympic torch. A rather prestigious honour. The other reason was my sheer physical condition. I'm ridiculously out of shape. The relay would be a great excuse to get off my lazy ass and do something again, not to mention a pretty good motivator to quitting smoking.

Last Saturday I started training. I started slowly, run a while, walk a while. The first two blocks weren't bad. I should've stopped there and called it a day. Holy shit did it hurt. I haven't run since the army days, and it showed. I picked up the pace again, trotting along in beat up tennis shoes and a hoody. Every step that hit the ground was a call to the couch. Every step hurt. My breathing was laboured and short. But I kept going. Half hour later I walked up to the porch and plopped into a chair. Exhausted.

It hurt like hell but it felt good to get the blood moving again. I need to do that every day, and every day go a little farther. That afternoon I felt good enough to punish myself some more, and heading out on the bike. I love riding, and on a warm summer day there is no better way to relax. But my legs wouldn't work. They didn't want to go, they just kept yelling at me as if to say why are you torturing us? Why don't you stop? ARE YOU STUPID?

I just kept going. It was a shorter ride than usual, the wind was pretty fierce and I didn't have it in me to keep pushing anymore. So I rode home, parked it, and flopped into the chair again. Done.

So I decided the grass should get it's first cut of the year.

Sunday was fun. As soon as I woke up I regretted it. The pain was intense. Muscles that hadn't been used in years were screaming at me to go back to bed. But the pain has a reason. Every journey begins with a single step. I kept going; I made it out of bed and down to the coffee maker. I sat on the porch with a coffee and a smoke, enjoying the fresh spring morning, admiring my neatly trimmed lawn (which truth be told the kids helped out alot with), and wondered WHAT THE HELL WAS I THINKING?

We wondered off to the church for Kim's pasta lunch fundraiser, which we were all helping with in various ways. Several hours and several plates of penne later, we walked home, where I again resumed my post on the porch. I pondered going again for another punishment session, or my bike, but imagined myself collapsed on a sidewalk somewhere. That's enough for one weekend. Time to relax.

I have to keep going. My fear now is that I actually win. That I actually get to carry the torch. At that point it won't be a pipe dream, it will be reality and the training will really begin. It's not a long distance by any means, I don't know yet how far the run is, but with 12,000 runners, I don't imagine it's too far. Certainly it will be more than I'm ready for now. On top of that, it comes through Windsor on December 23. Mid-winter. Yeah.

I hope I do win, It's the motivation I need to turn around years of bad habits and laziness. I hope I can set an example for my kids. Better yet, I hope my kids run with me.