Friday, January 28, 2011

Blogger Date & Fun Facts Friday - What Running Has Taught Me

Gorgeous Day for Blogger Lunch Date
Today was another beautiful, and unseasonably warm day here. It would have been ideal for a run, but today was a much-need, well-deserved rest day for me. At least tomorrow is supposed to be another really nice day. My longer run is scheduled for Sunday, but it's supposed to rain and cool back down. So, I'm switching up my plan and getting in the long run tomorrow on the prettier day. Smart huh ;-)

Today I finally had a blogger lunch date! I've only met two other bloggers, but I felt like that was less of a blogger meet-up really because I was meeting Jessica and Jolene for the Cathe Road Trip. I swear it feels like there are no bloggers in Arkansas, or at least not where I live. Anyway, I finally met a local blogger - Jenny @ Vegan and So Forth.

We've been trying to schedule this meet-up for some time, but you know how schedules work sometimes. We decided to eat lunch at a place down in the river market - 4 Square Gifts. It's only 1 of 2 vegetarian/vegan only places I know of here. One is a food truck of all things. Jason and I had tried this spot out once before and really enjoyed it. Jenny had never been, so I thought it'd be the perfect spot.

I got their Chickpea Wrap, which is Indian spiced chickpeas, hummus, tofu, and spinach (supposedly had carrots, but didn't see any in mine). Jenny got their Hummus & Tofu Wrap (which is what I had the first time I was there).  I was really pleased with my wrap; the chickpeas had great flavors. I may give this filling a try at home. It'd be great over a salad too.
 

Just a fun observation about meeting up with a fellow blogger - you're not the only one pulling out a camera to photograph your meal, and it's not awkward when you request to take pictures of each other or together.

Unfortunately, we only had an hour. I feel like we could have sat there and chatted for a few more hours just trying to catch up and get to know it each other. Plus, it was absolutely gorgeous out. I guess that just gives us an excuse to get together another time. Hopefully the next time we can bring the husbands along too. They both cycle, so they already have something in common other than being married to two fantastic ladies ;-)

Fun Facts Friday - (More) What Running Has Taught Me
As I alluded to yesterday, I had a great run. I was totally in the moment of running, just enjoying the fresh air, the sunshine, my surroundings (though everything is brown and dead this time of year). I

 guess in some ways, that's also a runner's high.  The run was tough because of the intervals at the end, but those intervals made me realize how capable I am, how strong I am if I get out of my head and let it happen. So for Fun Facts Friday, I thought I'd do another edition of what running has taught me (especially yesterday's run).
  • Runner's high - it does exist and there are at least 3 types: The slap-happy, drunk on life high, the I could run forever, life is perfect high, and the post-run endorphins that just make you feel awake.

  • I'm sadistic - I kind of like hill intervals and pickups (speed work really). It's hard as hell, the time flies by, and I feel like a real badass (even if I'm not).

  • I'm solar powered - I need sunshine for a good run. Ok, maybe not "need" for real, but man are my runs better when the temps are higher and the sun is shining. 

  • I'm a speed demon - from driving to running, I like going faster rather than slower. Now, I'm not race-winning fast, let's not pretend here. But I dread having to go super slow. Yesterday I averaged 8:30 minute/mile for my 6-mile steady state. Too fast to sustain for 13.2 miles. I know I must learn to slow the heck down so I can make it for longer distances and not wipe out my energy reserves. 

  • I have a split personality - I can't decide if I prefer to run alone or with a partner. Yesterday I was looking forward to running with Jason, but he couldn't join me. My heart really sank. But once I got out there and got going, it was freaking awesome. Sometimes I LOVE being alone running, but other times I really miss having Jason at my side. I also sometimes with I had a girlfriend to run with. I see pairs of girls running and kind of get a little lonely feeling then as well. 
What are some things you've learned about yourself from running (or from whatever exercise you most prefer)?