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Days 78-Tempo-79-Spinning-80-Long Run and 82-Track of 112 #gratefulwhore

Part 1
I am a whore….for compliments.

And not compliments about what I look like, or how nice my house is, or what a cool car I have, because I have a Honda Element and most people don’t think this is a cool car. 

No, I’m a compliment whore for the following compliments:

  • “I love your husband.  He’s just so great.” Because, honestly, isn’t a compliment about how great my husband is, really a compliment about how smart I am for choosing him?
  • “You’re a good writer.”

And honestly, the writer bit goes much farther than a compliment about me for choosing my most excellent husband.

I mean, if you tell me I’m a good writer, and you seem sincere, well let’s just say the old expression stands true for me, “Flattery will get you EVERYWHERE!!!”

And this past weekend, I encountered the trifecta of compliments starting on Thursday evening.

I went to a fundraising event, co-hosted by one fabulous Christy Perros, for Peace Neighborhood Center.  When I arrived, I was greeted by Todd Tribble (husband of Sheri Belcher—who I have known since junior high and who was also co-hosting the fundraiser).  Todd said, in so many words, “I really enjoy the blog.”  I broke out into a huge smile (both on my face and internally) and stood there and let him shower me, and Christy, with compliments.

Later that evening, Sherri Belcher (wife of Todd Tribble), also lavished me with praise about the blog and how much she liked it, and that it was inspiring, and how much she likes how I’m so honest and open with my writing (about things like what a whore I am for compliments about my writing).  She also said that she and her husband, Todd Tribble, will be hanging around at night and one of them will say, “What are you doing?”  “I’m reading ‘the blog.’  What are you doing?”  “I’m reading ‘the blog.’”  She said our blog is their dirty little secret!  I love it!  I’m one-half of someone’s dirty little secret!  Maybe it’s more of a guilty pleasure, but I don’t really care what it is, because…….it’s a compliment about the blog.  In addition to the awesome praise about the blog, she also heaped on me a whole heaping pound of, “I know you’ll meet your goal.  You just will.” 

The next day, as I am leaving the YMCA after my spinning class (more about that at the end of the blog) I run into a woman who I went to junior high school with…in Pennsylvania!  We reconnected via Facebook, like so many people these days, a few years ago, but I had never seen her in town.  Her name is Kristen Moore (and crazy enough, she is Sherri Belcher’s next door neighbor—which I never knew until she told me that morning), and after we said, “Hellos,” she started telling me how much she liked the blog.  Woo hoo!!  All right!  I’m awesome!! And she’s like this wicked smart math professor at the U of M, so if she likes it, you know it’s good, right?!  And she also said it was impressive that we have run 20 miles.  Now, the writing stuff I soak up, but the running stuff I think to myself, “Well, that’s not really that great.  I mean, how can it be that great if I’m actually doing it.”  WHAT?!?! 

  • “Gilbert, do you hear your damn self?!?!  Are you denying that you are in fact pretty amazing because you are doing something that a very small fraction of people in the world ever do?”
  • “Well, yes, I am actually sort of denying that I am pretty amazing.  That is dumb though isn’t it?”
  • “Hell yes that is dumb!!!  You are great and awesome at running AND a great blogger too.”
  • “Why, yes, yes I am, aren’t I?”

 I love internal dialogue with myself.

And then on Saturday evening, after running 15 miles earlier in the day (more about that at the end of the blog), I went to a wedding reception for Drew and Christine Pullen.  Drew wrestled for my husband/compliment magnet at Pioneer many years ago and he just married in December the love of his life at a beautiful ocean-side wedding someplace warm and beautiful.  When we walked in the door, we were greeted by Drew’s mom, Kathy, who said, “I was just talking to Christine and she tells me how she reads your blog all the time.”  At this point I’m thinking, “OK, where’s the hidden camera?  Is this a test to see how much of an asshole I’ll be due to all these compliments?”  There was no hidden camera.  Then the bride, who is tall, thin, and gorgeous, comes over to hug me and tells me she really likes the blog, and she can’t believe how much working out I’m doing, and that I look great.” (Just so you don’t think ill of her, I’m paraphrasing and Christine didn’t say that couldn’t believe that I looked great.)

I mean, all these compliments in three days.  Holy Cow!  I am in heaven (This literally would be heaven to me….hanging around for eternity and people telling me I’m a good writer, and they love the blog, and they know I will be successful—although, if I’ve actually made it to heaven, what more success do I need to achieve?).  And as much as I am giddy about compliments when people say they love the blog, I am, believe it or not, very humble and grateful.

My mother thinks social media is a piece of garbage.  She can not even imagine that anyone would care enough about the minutiae of one’s life to read and comment on it, whether it’s on Facebook or Twitter.  “Who cares?  It’s ridiculous!”  I would suspect that my mother wouldn’t think the blog is ridiculous, but I suspect she hasn’t ever read it either; but I do think there is a kernel of truth to my her feelings.  I mean, who cares about my training?  Who cares I’m running a marathon?  Who do I think I am thinking that people care? 

Well, I’ll tell you…. I am grateful.  I am grateful to all of you who read it, comment on it, and pass along your words of encouragement and support.  It is reinforcement for me of the 82 days of training and 60 blog postings (i.e., my part-time job of upwards of 20 hours per week), that I’m on the right track.

So a hugemungous and ginormous THANK YOU, to all of you!

Carry on, friends.  Carry on.  (P.S.  Sheri Belcher said she also like my closing phrase.  Yeah!)

Part 2
Oh, for those of you who are actually interested in the training part and not just a Kristi-love fest on the part of Kristi…here’s a recap.

Thursday, Tempo Run
An 11 mile tempo run that we were hoping would go better than our first 11 mile tempo run…and it did!  Despite our pace times being only slightly better this time around, we felt so much better physically and emotionally (and feeling good emotionally and physically is like those Master Card commercials….PRICELESS!).  Our goal time was 1 mile easy (Well, not just any of the miles, the first one actually) and miles 2-11 at a 9:44 pace.  WE DID IT!  Check it out below:

Go team! And…yeah! No more 11-mile tempo runs!

Friday, Spinning
Finally! Things are starting to click for me in spin class!  I was able to keep up my cadence (100 RPMs) during the hardest part of the workout (I choose to do this in gear 17).  Wait a minute! Is this even possible?  I’m totally doubting myself right now.  Geez!  Oh well, I’m going to leave it.

My only other wish is that the music wasn’t all Techno.  UGH!  The one song I knew during the class, which I started to get psyched for when it came on, was a techno AND shortened version.  Oh well, I choose to take this as a sign of my lack of hipness, with which I am completely comfortable.

The other memorable thing about this workout was that Christy P didn’t attend. It was the first workout in this training that went awry from a participation standpoint. I could go into a long-story about her “hang over” but that’s not true at all.  But I was surprised when I got up at 5:15 a.m. (a tad late for a 6:00 a.m. class because I did sort of have a hangover) and headed downstairs and was greeted by this text message:

I was sooo sad, I had to send her a text from class with a photo of my very lonely spinning bike.

I am posting this photo for the sheer hilarity of what my hair looked like after spinning class.

Saturday, Long-Run (15 Miles)
Due to my need to be in Berkley at 11:00 a.m. to try on bridesmaids dresses for Laura Westphal’s November nuptials, I knew I had to leave my house at 10:00, which meant I had to be home by 9:00 a.m. and in the ice bath, which meant we should be getting back to Christy’s house by around 8:30, which meant we would have to take off for our 15-mile run at 5:00 a.m., which meant I was getting up at 4:00 a.m.

In addition to keeping to my time line schedule (well, I was about 10 minutes late getting to the dress shop due to traffic on M-14), I kept to my pace time!  Dare I say, toward the end, I even kicked its ass!

Overall pace time goal was 9:54 and I pulled a 9:27.  What psyched me up the most was the last two miles—8:28 and 8:33.  Woo hoo!  I’m not sure what’s got into me, but I am pretty excited to run this race!!

Could it be? Yes it could. Something’s coming, something good. If I can wait.

But, the best part of the run for me, actually, was how excited Christy was about it.  She was pumped!  She was pumped with her time and how great she felt during the run and at the end.  And that is one of the things I love the best about running….hearing about other people’s successes!  I’m like a running ambassador!  Way to go, Christy!

I am posting this photo for the sheer hilarity of what I looked like wearing my compression socks and running shoes as I drove in the car to Berkley for the bridesmaid dress shopping. I was embarrassed I had to get out of my car once and head into a public place wearing this.

Monday, Track
After spending 7 ½ hours on Sunday doing yard work (a very large portion of the time with my body being in a squatted position), I couldn’t even sit down on the toilet by myself this a.m. without the aid of both of my arms and my bathroom sink and the tub.  I had to lower myself very, very carefully!!  It was ridiculous!  In fact, each time I get up from my desk at work today to move around, I am still moving slowly.  I basically spent all yesterday doing leg squats and my legs are telling me they aren’t too happy! So, of course, today’s track workout was 10x400s!!  Oh holy speed work!  AND….the pace time per lap was 1:57, i.e., fast.

I didn’t know the workout until I got in the car with Christy, because she is like the running mom—she always makes the routes and always knows the work outs.  After she said it was 10x400s, she showed me her arm. 

10 400s, 10 pieces of tape. That is the only way our oxygen-deprived brains were going to be able to keep track of our laps. Christy is all about pure genius!

After each 400, Christy removed the tape from her arm and placed it here on the fence. I like the 10 pieces of tape on the fence much better than 10 pieces of tape on her arm.

In between each 400 we walked a 400, which was kind of a pain because the overall workout took a long time, but those folks know what they are doing because my legs, especially in light of yesterday’s leg squats, needed the break.

Despite how my legs, back, and neck felt, the track workout was a success!!  We beat our goal time on each 400 and in the case of the first and the last lap, by 11 seconds. Dare I throw out an AWESOMESAUCE?!?!?

AWESOMESAUCE!!!

I am just amazed.  I am amazed at the progress I continue to make 21 years into my running career. I am amazed that you all care enough to read about our training.  I am amazed at your generosity of spirit and words in supporting this endeavor.  And I am most amazed by Christy P, and how incredibly generous and supportive she has been.  Plus, the damn blog was her idea, so if it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t be spending 2 ½ hours during my work day getting this blog ready and posting it.  And…I suppose, if it wasn’t for her, I also wouldn’t be feeling so damn good about myself right now!

Thank you, Ms. Perros.  Thank you.

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2 Comments Post a comment
  1. Heather #

    Love this uber-positive, lovin’-on-Kristi blog post! Also your tiny little pigtail poking out of the back of your hair in that post-spinning pic. I’m just adding fuel to your compliment fire, and of course, you do know I love your compliment-magnet husband as well.

    May 21, 2012
    • And as you know…you can never, ever compliment me enough! xoxo And do you also know…how totally amazing YOU are? If not, shoot me an email so I can take some time to hit “Reply” and just let ‘er rip! xoxo

      May 21, 2012

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