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Before Another Long Run… Which I Find Downright Scary…

Sunday there were no visits recorded again, but this post should actually start with that day’s early hours, so with Saturday night, when I checked Carrefour’s site and noticed that they offered free shipping on orders over 40 RON made up of products from a list of discounted ones made that weekend, and when I went through that list I found one thing I actually planned to go there to get, and another I was sort of thinking of looking for. I still needed quite a lot to get to 40 RON though, and while I did find some other things at good prices that I could add, I initially gave up on the idea and went to bed. However, when I woke up I kept thinking of it, and since I could get on-line then I did so and made that order after all, nine cans of sardines, which were apparently all those that they still had, making up more than half of the necessary value.
I had picked between 3 PM and 5 PM on Monday as the delivery time, but the delivery guy called during that period to let me know he’ll be about half an hour late, saying he’ll call again a few minutes before he’ll get here. However, there was no other call and he just showed up, actually a little after 5:30 PM… And he asked for 41 RON, when the price was 40.62 RON and I had taken care to have the exact amount. And he insisted when I handed him said amount, saying that he can’t give coins to the cashier, so I had to leave him there for a moment and grab 1 RON, which was in fact the only 1 RON bill I had around. Now I have no idea whether what he said was true and that’s Carrefour’s policy in case of paying cash on delivery, in which case they really should specify that when you make an order and list the actual amount you’ll need to pay, but I took it as making up for cheating on the scales when I had no reason to and shrugged it off, since I did otherwise mean to perhaps drop off some change in their donation box at some point. But, back to that delivery guy, this time I did ask whether he wanted the bag back, yet he said he didn’t, even though that text recommending that you do so is still printed on the bottom of the bag. Again, no idea whether that’s their actual policy now, not wanting to reuse bags, but if he refused there was nothing I could do.

Since there were other things I meant to get, I waited for the worst of the heat to pass and went out that evening, just after 7:20 PM. What was somewhat fortunate was that I also took the recyclables, including those things I drop off at Kaufland, and the bin that’s supposed to be at the corner wasn’t there anymore, so I went the other way, looking for other bins and meaning to go to a Mega Image first, for lemons, if I was going to use that route. And I did spot a bin before those I knew of, which made me decide to make a small detour and go to a different Mega Image than the one I initially had in mind… At which point I realized I didn’t have a mask, so I turned around and got back here for it, the good thing being that I at least didn’t get all the way to Kaufland before noticing that.
Getting back here at 7:45 PM, I left again five minutes later, with one more can to drop off, since dad had opened and emptied it after I left. And that can actually caused a bit of an issue, since that time I went first to the Mega Image I initially had in mind, getting those lemons from there, and didn’t spot any other recycling bins on the way, but I’ll get to that later. So, to stick to the chronological order, despite thinking I should go to Carrefour first, since that one closes at 10 PM while the Kaufland next to it closes at midnight, I nevertheless went to Kaufland first, dropping those things off but not finding any bins for metal there either, so still having that can with me after buying what I meant to buy from there, plus a couple of other things that were at surprisingly low prices, including a pack of those mushrooms I tend to get before a major run, which were at a third of the price but looked really nice. Actually, the bundle of green onions had been 33% off and the mushrooms 60% off when I grabbed them, but with Kaufland trying to get rid of everything before closing and dropping prices for fresh things more and more as time passes in the evening, by the time I got to the self-checkout the green onions were 66% off and the mushrooms 67% off.
Did need to rush after that though, since it was almost 9:30 PM when I was leaving Kaufland, but in the end I didn’t have to worry, grabbing some expiring yogurt and eggs and some tea from Carrefour and already getting my stuff out of the cabinet by 9:50 PM. Spent some time arranging everything in the bags I had at that point, and since I still had that can I also meant to finally drop it off in a bin, but I always found the bins from that mall confusing and that time it was even worse, since the first one I passed had the plastic bags shoved inside it and one of the sections was overflowing, so I couldn’t see the colors of the bags and, as I said, the labels never helped me, so I initially threw it in one section, then thought that was the wrong one, dug it out of there, put it in the overflowing one, then thought I had in fact been right the first time, but since it had ended up under the other things in that section I just left it there… My mind was stuck on that, however, so I didn’t use the escalator I should have used, ending up almost at the one leading to the other exit by the time I realized it and turning around. And, after all of that, I was sure I won’t get back in time to still catch dad here, so I stopped on a bench on the way and carefully calculated what I had spent… Yet still saw dad in front of the building when I got here, so we could exchange a few words and I was entering the building at 10:30 PM.

Tuesday night, or Wednesday morning if you prefer, I again only got in bed at 5:20 AM, but there’s nothing else to say about those two days, so I’ll move on to Thursday, when I got up just after 2:30 PM, but obviously took it very easy, since I only meant to go out at 7 PM, to get an idea of how crowded the park is at that time, when I mean to start Sunday’s long run, even if things are likely different on Sunday compared to Thursday. Had the usual stuff plus almonds, but just some regular biscuits with honey as something sweet and drank most of the tea. Also, while I had the running t-shirt and tights, I wore the regular shoes, which I realized are indeed those that are rubbing my right heel but which didn’t cause a problem while running because of that, and again stuffed some things in my tights, the plan being to also go to Carrefour and Kaufland, and maybe have a look in that bigger Mega Image as well, after the run. So that was how I left at 7 PM, when the reported temperature was 28-29°C and there was hardly any wind, though there was a storm warning starting at 9 PM and sites listed a chance of showers after 10 PM, with the storms arriving at night.
Though there were actually stretches that were pretty much empty, where I tried to push to make up for some of the lost time, it was, of course, quite crowded, even if I only really had to briefly stop once, on sector two of lap one, when a cyclist who had his bicycle across the path decided to get moving just as I was getting to him, cutting me off. Otherwise, a lot of weaving and going the long way around, from one side of the path to the other, searching for ways through, taking to the grass or otherwise off the path several times, once on the grass for over ten meters, maybe even 20, around a couple of benches and garbage cans then and one or the other a few other times, and several times also slowing to wait for an opening. Biggest loss though was probably when I had to slow to a walk to see the time, since it was getting dark and the way my stopwatch lights up makes the times reasonably, even if still far from properly, visible when it’s really dark, but pretty much impossible to see when the light is just failing, and it was like that from sector two of lap three, so I slowed to a walk once on that sector and twice, and for a few more seconds, on the next, this proving necessary when I realized that, at least in this latter case, the actual time had nothing to do with what I thought I saw at first, when trying to get a look while running. Other than that, my spleen seemed to be bothering me a bit at first, until I started paying attention to my breathing, and there was a bit of pain in my right knee from the start of lap two, which stayed there until the end, but on the other hand my left calf, which had bothered me a little as I was just standing in my room, before leaving, seemed just fine while I ran.
Put the issues before the time because that was beyond embarrassing: 49:43.15, with sector times of 4:20.32, 5:07.14, 6:01 (6:00.58), 4:34.22, 5:15.70, 6:10 (6:09.88), 4:43 (4:42.30), 5:26.77, 6:11 (6:10.15) and 1:56.09, making for lap times of 15:28.04, 15:59.80 and 16:20 (16:19.22). I was thinking that, seeing as I think the shoes are worth about 30 seconds and it was so crowded as well, I’ll just aim for 48:30 but not be too disappointed if I’ll end up closer to 49 minutes, and that was still the target after the first lap, but the second made it quite clear that even 49:30 was unlikely, which proved to be the case. Maybe I’d have just managed it without slowing those three times to a walk to check the time, but I’m not sure even then, and it’d have been an absolutely awful time even so. The only good thing was that, while I simply couldn’t go any faster, I didn’t exactly feel tired, even thinking a few times to go for a longer distance or even switch to doing that long run then, though I quickly realized that it’d have been an utter idiocy to attempt that when I was unprepared for it, had those regular shoes and nothing to drink.

After stopping on a bench to write down the times and the sectors when I had to stop or slow to a walk, not that any of it was necessary, I went to that Carrefour after that, just quickly grabbing another expiring yogurt, which was an interesting kind and in fact only expiring five days later, even though things placed in that section normally expire in no more than three days, and usually one or two. Then I went to that Kaufland as well, getting what I meant to get plus some more beets, which had an unannounced discount, and an expiring jar of mustard, in case dad wanted it. Needed to spend some time selecting the plums though, since those were actually the main thing I had gone there for but I only found a handful left, most of them pretty bad. Still, did manage to find enough reasonably good ones and, as I was passing through that section, happened to notice that they also had a discount on that kind of yogurt I had grabbed from Carrefour, yet while it was also expiring on September 8, it wasn’t placed where the expiring products are and the price was significantly higher. Either way, after waiting in line at the self-checkout for quite a while, a single one of the machines accepting cash working and being used by two guys who were taking their time and also had a lot of products, even if the limit is supposed to be 15 when using those machines, I was leaving just after 10 PM, when the first drops of rain were starting to fall. For that reason, I didn’t also stop at a Mega Image I passed on the way and which was still open, thinking that the chances of finding anything interesting there were too low anyway, and got back here just before 10:40 PM, just when the drops were becoming a drizzle, with the actual rain starting not long after that and storms coming at night, making the forecast listed on the sites I check far more accurate than our national weather service’s alerts.

And now that I got this week’s second post out of the way as well, I’ll see how much I can also read today and then try to prepare for what the shape I’m currently in makes the really crazy and terribly unwise plan I have for tomorrow, which is to run 11 laps around the lake, so 35.2 km, again. The target is still 3:30, but I of course hope to be at least a little faster than two years ago, so I’ll aim for 3:25, yet at this point I find the prospect really scary and doubt I’ll even manage to cover the distance, much less do it in that target time. As a general rule, 3:30 would mean 18 minutes for the first five laps, then two in 19 minutes, two in 20 minutes and two in 21 minutes, so 3:25 would probably require covering the first three laps and the fifth in 17 minutes, and probably the fourth in 17:30 and the sixth in 18:30, since I mean to drink from the tea I’ll take with me on laps four, six, eight and ten and likely eat the protein bar I’ll also take on lap seven, though I may leave it for lap nine if I won’t feel the need until then. But, considering Thursday’s lap times, that really doesn’t seem likely, and my right knee is still bothering me, this actually seeming to be a somewhat more serious issue, so, again, I find the prospect downright scary and doubt I’ll even manage to cover the distance, plus that I wonder whether I’ll be allowed to keep running in the park after 10 PM, and after 10:30 PM if I won’t finish in that target time. But at this point it’s too late to back out, so let’s see what will happen…

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