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A Poor Run Follows the Good One… And My Calf Worries Me

Monday seemed to be the week’s only day with a relatively low risk of rain, the forecast listing storms otherwise. For that reason, it should have been the week’s running day, but with my left calf still vehemently complaining about being forced in such a manner during Friday’s run, that’d have been particularly unwise. At the same time, I initially intended to use the day to go in the other direction, starting with the Carrefour from the park, and then getting to that recycling center I dropped things off at once before, to check whether I’ll be able to take all the bottles and cans “generated” by dad during this period there, since I learned that the company that had those machines and the place at Obor that also accepted them pressed closed them down for good in March. Then, since I was there, I planned to check out the Kaufland that recently opened in a spot that should be just next to that recycling center, then keep going to the Auchan at Vitan, and return on the other side, to pass through the farmers’ market and get apples as well.
This last part of the plan went away Sunday morning, when dad brought a lot of pretty bad apples, so the need is now to eat them quickly, not get more. And then the forecast, which still listed possible showers or even brief storms, and the threatening clouds that were actually gathering in the afternoon, made me give up on that entire idea and just go to these locations of Carrefour and Kaufland that are right next to each other here. The rain actually held off, but I went out a bit before 2:25 PM and wandered around for quite a while inside, including losing about half an hour for no reason in Kaufland, since I gave up before I could perhaps benefit from it, so I was only getting to the building’s entrance at 5:45 PM even so, and it was a couple of minutes later that I finally got up and in here, since all the bags I had made it hard to dig out the keys and open doors.
First checked prices at Carrefour and found some eggs among the stuff that expired soon. One of the cartons was wet and opening it revealed why, but the other also had one egg that wasn’t just cracked, but actually had a hole in it, so I replaced it with one that was still whole out of the other one and bought it then, leaving everything else for later. Then went to Kaufland, dropped off those things I drop off there, which I had taken with me, and got some things. Also meant to get onions from there, but they weren’t from Romania, so I gave up on that idea… And also eventually gave up on waiting for those who were putting the labels on the products that were expiring soon. Saw two employees working on several crates of such products and wandered around the area for about half an hour, but they seemed to barely make any progress and towards the end of that period someone else grabbed two of the remaining five buckets of the kind of yogurt I wanted, so I got the two I wanted out of the remaining three, worried that I’ll be left without otherwise, and eventually gave up on waiting for them, both because it had been too long and because I didn’t want to wander around with the yogurt even longer, since I still had to go back to Carrefour and leave it in a cabinet for a while anyway. Used the self-checkout without issues at that point… And for a moment, while arranging the stuff in my bags after getting back to the cabinet where I had left the eggs, thought I had left the noodles dad wanted on the machine, before looking back up and realizing I had for some reason taken them out of the bag and placed them in that cabinet when taking the eggs out.
Went back to get the other things from Carrefour after that, which included one bread of another kind, since that kind that I tend to get from there was again only sliced, and ended up wandering around and calculating the total for quite a while, to make the cabbages take me as close as possible to what I had left. Did trick the scales a bit for one of the lemons I purchased, since dad told me to at least get two of them even if they’ll be too expensive, and they were and also had thick peels, but it eventually worked out. Might have worked out even better when the cashier told me to leave it like that, at 15 RON instead of 15.37 RON, as I was digging through my pockets for the exact change, possibly after noticing that I was giving him everything I had and also how my phone looked, when I took it out of the pocket and put it in front of him, since I still have the SIM card in the old one. But I insisted on paying the correct amount, and finally started on my way back, though I did stop once more before exiting that mall, to arrange the stuff better in my bags. Also meant to use that disinfectant dispenser that’s at that exit once I was finally done, but I guess it was empty, so I just kept going. And while I’m at it, struck me as rather odd that nobody checked my temperature when I went in, as they’re supposed to do that and Kaufland was known to have started doing so even a bit before the requirement was officially published, but learned when I got back that they had announced that they won’t do it anymore and many other places pretty much gave up on the idea quietly, after quite a wave of complaints and even some staged scandals.
I’ll also add here that my mind seemed to be even more on vacation after getting back, and also that what I did with those noodles wasn’t even the first sign, said first sign actually being when I left without writing down the new 10 RON discount code I had for Carrefour, after receiving and filling another one of their surveys, so I wasn’t able to use it then. The third sign was that I cut that bread, but placed it as it was in the freezer, without turning the pieces around, so they were going to get stuck back together as they’ll freeze anyway. At least I could fix that after showering, still being able to pry them apart at that point, but there was nothing to do about the receipts, which I had forgotten in my pants when I put them in the washing machine. Was also thinking of shaving my head before showering that evening, but it wasn’t that I gave up on the idea since it’ll be colder these days, but that I simply forgot that I was even thinking of it when I went to the bathroom… And then ended up washing my hair with shower gel too, and that wasn’t because I grabbed a bottle without looking. I actually looked at it the first time, then even rinsed my eyes and opened them again before putting some more of it on my head, thinking it was strange that I could see how it was settling back down in the bottle but not realizing even then that it meant something was wrong, since the shampoo bottle isn’t transparent. Only finally noticed it after I finished rinsing and was about to move on, at which point I used a little shampoo as well and rinsed one more time.

Wednesday I woke up a bit before 1:30 PM and checked the forecast right away, seeing that the storms announced before seemed to have vanished and I had a shot at good enough weather, so I decided to go for a run after all. Saw 46 kg again when I weighed myself, which remains just as worrying, and had an apple and the usual tea, but replaced the yogurt and cereals with the pasta I had left there for a week, had regular biscuits with honey as something sweet, and didn’t add almonds again. Wore the full running gear, the reported temperature was around 19°C, and it even became sunny when I left. One site still listed a significant risk of storms around 5 PM, but I went out at 3:35 PM, so that shouldn’t have been a problem even if true, and it wasn’t true anyway, staying sunny.
It was rather windy though, and while I seemed to have managed to fix my cap properly during the first part of the first sector, right at the end it almost flew away again, and while I could have just allowed it to do so at that point, I grabbed it out of reflex and that made me hit the button on my stopwatch a little late again. It was still very quickly after crossing what I consider to be the finish line, but the time I saw was 48:15.22, so I will take 48:15 into account, but there is a chance it was in fact a little less than that. Sector times were 4:21.54, 5:11 (5:10.61), 5:56.34, 4:27 (4:26.90), 5:02 (5:01.64), 5:58 (5:57.98), 4:27.20, 5:07.66, 5:56 (5:55.15) and something under the 1:50.20 I saw as the time for the last sector, making for lap times of 15:28.49, 15:27 (15:26.52) and 15:30.01. That’s obviously a poor time, 26 seconds worse on the three laps than Friday, when I had a long way to go after that point, and the worst for ten kilometers since July 3, when it was awfully hot, unless you also count the runs around this area, while parks were closed. But the one thing I am pleased about is that I could remember all exact times, since it’s been quite a while since I last did this for sector times.
The wind was an issue at times, and there were a fair number of people again as well. It was nothing like Friday, however, and while I had to often weave and go the long way around and at times calculate paths and pick my way through, there weren’t any real roadblocks, I never had to stop and wouldn’t even say I was forced to significantly slow down. The bigger problems just had to do with me, one being that calf and the other the effects of eating different things before leaving. Somewhat strangely, going out on Monday seemed to have helped my calf, and when I woke up Tuesday it seemed quite fine unless I touched a certain spot, but once I started running it was clear that something was definitely still wrong there. That was likely also part of the reason why my legs felt heavy while running and it seemed I couldn’t cover the usual distance with each step, but another likely reason for that was having that pasta instead of yogurt and cereals just before running, and possibly those regular biscuits as well, and that was clearly the reason why my stomach also felt rather heavy. So I just felt sluggish, and that I needed to make more effort for less gain, and it definitely showed. Still, at least I managed very steady lap times, and also sector three times, and sector one times on laps two and three.
I’ll also add here that I again noticed the regulations being ignored in the stores I passed on the way, and while I didn’t pay that much attention as I was going to the park, just seeing two employees without masks in one place, I actually made a point of looking on my way back, not seeing anyone at the door except at this nearby Mega Image and a jewelry store, so the places that already had guards, not seeing even those take people’s temperature, and clearly seeing customers without masks in two stores, the employee in at least one of them having the mask under her chin as well. I couldn’t see the one in the other one well enough to be able to tell, but both of these were food shops, the first being part of a bakery chain and this other one belonging to a dairy company, selling their products as well as various things to munch on, some in bulk.

Was quite understanding with myself Wednesday evening, finding explanations for that poor performance, but yesterday that didn’t work anymore and I pretty much crashed, spending a few hours just curled up under the blanket in the evening, unable to do much of anything. The cold also had something to do with that, but the main reason was my mood, that time being part of what caused the crash. That calf is another part of it though, as something’s definitely not right there and I’m getting increasingly worried. If anything, the pain I felt for the first few days was less concerning, as that felt familiar and like something that was likely to go away on its own, but now it just feels strange, hurting if I just touch a certain spot, without even pressing, and otherwise the muscle feeling rather tense when I start moving after resting it for a while or even when I just stand, but at times even when I just sit or lie down I have a sensation that I can only explain as feeling that something isn’t right there. But I could do 200 squats just fine yesterday, making up for skipping Wednesday, and it’s mainly my thighs that are complaining about it a little today, when I somehow also managed to drag myself to clean my room a little and change the sheets again, after which I also did the day’s 100 squats just fine, so let’s see how it’ll go. I was very close to worse injuries over these past few years, after all, and possibly even had some, and I could just wait them out and recover without even taking a break from running. Then again, I’m not getting any younger, and relying on that is less likely to be a good idea with every passing year…

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