To start with the early hours of June 9, I started eating dinner at 3:10 AM, also having some peanut butter again, and finished at 4 AM. Then I set the alarm to ring at 2 PM, but ended up getting up just before 1:30 PM. An SMS from my provider woke me up at one point and I wasn’t even sure that I had napped again after that, but certainly must have, maybe twice, because it seemed that almost right away I just saved a cramp, and then it again seemed like hardly any time passed until I felt like peeing again and got up it, but the SMS came at 12:37 PM and it was 1:29 PM when I got up, so I must have gotten back to sleep quickly both times. And I was sleepy enough to probably fall asleep right away once again and catch another little nap, but decided that getting up 30 minutes earlier would be more useful, since I had a schedule to stick to… Only to spend most of that additional time getting Micky to eat actual cat food. Either way, I then had the usual stuff plus almonds, with the sweet thing being the last of some pumpkin pie brought by dad from mother, with added honey, and left a little after 4:10 PM, wearing the full running gear. The reported temperature was 25-26°C, holding steady or even increasing by 1°C by the time I finished.
The time was 1:17:32, with sector times of 4:21, 5:02, 5:46, 4:25, 5:00, 5:53, 4:32, 5:04, 5:53, 4:37, 5:10, 6:00, 4:40, I think 5:12 and I think 5:57, making for lap times of 15:09, 15:18, 15:29, 15:47 and 15:49. About those last two sectors, I initially wrote down 5:12 and 5:55, which didn’t add up, but I only noticed that when I looked again, three days later, and while everything seems right up to that point, I’m not entirely certain that I corrected that part properly. It seems very likely, but it might have also been 5:14 and 5:55, I just couldn’t remember, having too many times to keep in mind.
I was wondering whether to try to stay under 1:18 again, not taking it easier, and then see what I’ll have left for the second run when I’ll get there, or leave a little in reserve and only aim to stay under 1:20, but the first lap was better than expected, mainly thanks to sector three. Then, after lap two was also better than expected and I was a fair bit ahead of the pace for 1:18, I aimed to avoid losing time compared to that pace on lap three as well. And when I actually gained a little more time yet again, staying under 1:18 became quite certain and the target became to complete all laps in less than 16 minutes, which I also managed. I would have preferred it if the last lap wouldn’t have been the slowest one, but I couldn’t avoid that… Which also meant that I just failed to stay under 1:17:30, which was a little frustrating. Then again, the possibility hadn’t even crossed my mind until I finished, even though a lap five that would have been faster than lap four would have guaranteed it.
I had to briefly stop on sector two of lap one, because of a woman with a dog, the dog going across the lane in front of me, and also on sector two of lap four, because two little girls started to run across the lane right in front of me. It’s possible that I also stopped for just an instant when I went wide in order to make sure that I avoided a guy on a scooter who was coming from another path, on sector two of lap five. Otherwise, I felt the heat mainly on sector two of laps one and two, since there were some clouds on sectors one and three of lap two and sector one of lap three, and after that, even if it was sunny again, I didn’t feel it that much anymore. Also, while there was little wind in a few places, it wasn’t a serious issue. Maybe I felt it a little more on the long straight of sector two of what I think was lap three, though there’s also a chance that it was lap four, but the other places where I noticed it weren’t on straights and, either way, it wasn’t bad. As for physical issues, I felt some warnings from the right knee on sector two of lap two, which initially went away but returned from sector three of lap three, though they remained faint all the way to the end. Also, from the start of lap three I had to try to spread the toes of my left foot, because the corners of nails were digging into a couple of them, but that didn’t help too much, since there was blood when I finished anyway. And another problem that became even more noticeable when I finished was the burn on my right arm, caused by some mamaliga splashing on that spot while I was making it, on June 5. A blister had formed, breaking the previous morning, but the spot’s right where the stopwatch stays and I only later started doing more to protect it.
A dark cloud was coming when I finished and it rained a little after that, but it didn’t last long and served both to make it significantly cooler and to apparently cancel the play that was supposed to start at 7 PM, clearing the final straight for my second run. The theater seemed to have just about finished setting up the stage, at what for me would have been the start of the final sector’s straight, when I finished that first run, but there wasn’t as much as a trace left when I got back there. And yes, that means that, as part of my training for this summer’s Dream Trek, I ran twice that day, having a banana and a muesli bar, drinking the rest of the tea and making another, putting some things in the pocket of my tights, clipping the toenail which had jabbed the toe, bandaging that toe a little and leaving again a little before 7:50 PM. The reported temperature varied greatly, between 18°C and 23°C, depending on which site I checked, so it was pointless to look at how it was supposed to change by the time I finished, but it was 17-18°C at 11 PM, which likely meant that it pretty much held steady all evening, since it seemed a little chilly on the way to the park, so I’d say that it was pretty much the same then as well. Admittedly, having dried sweat on me and being weakened by the first run likely had something to do with feeling chilly, but a steady temperature would make sense, the rain stopping and the clouds going away likely compensating for the setting Sun.
The time was 49:07.10, with sector times of 4:23.66, 5:12.32, 6:00 (5:59.03), 4:35.87, 5:14 (5:13.16), 6:00.59, 4:35 (4:34.72), 5:13 (5:12.85), 5:59.31 and 1:56 (1:55.59), making for lap times of 15:35.01, 15:49.62 and 15:47 (15:46.88). After that good first run, I was clearly only aiming to stay below 50 minutes, and after a first sector that was a little faster than I thought, a second that was a little slower and a third that was all right, the first lap seemed to give me a fair chance. So I then wanted to stay under 16 minutes on lap two as well, and when I managed that by some margin I realized that I might just have a shot at staying under 49:30, that first sector being a little faster than lap two’s giving me even more hopes and even making me wonder whether staying under 49 minutes was possible. So I really pushed from sector two of lap three, and continued to do so even when, after it, it was clear that staying under 49 minutes was no longer possible while staying under 49:30 was certain, which at least resulted in a lap three that was faster than lap two. In the end, it was the first time I went over 48 minutes since March, the first over 49 minutes since October, and the worst time over this distance since September. But it was the first time I ran twice in one day, so I was nevertheless very pleased with the result.
There were still a few drops on the way to the park, but the rain stopped as I got there and, while the lane was wet, oddly enough it didn’t feel like stepping on a wet sponge except in a few small spots, so I could use it. But I had noticed during the first run that a hole that’s under the lane, on sector three, got bigger, and on this second run’s first lap I stepped right in it, the ankle complaining a little even if I hold it firm, so I avoided that area on laps two and three. Otherwise, while there were a fair number of people and a few times going the long way around really meant going all the way on the outside and losing time, there was just one roadblock, on sector two of what I believe was lap one, and even then I managed to squeeze through while just slowing, without having to stop. But my legs were complaining, starting with the return of those warnings from my right knee and some new ones from my left hip but soon enough getting to the point that pretty much every part was complaining. And from the start of lap three my arms were also starting to go numb and there was also some pain in the right side of my abdomen. But from sector two of lap three I pretty much felt like I was in runner’s high and tried to give it everything, though those warnings from the right knee became actual pain on sector three of lap three, and it was probably because I was trying to spare it that I then also felt some pain in that ankle and lower leg. But I managed. It was all I had, however.
After the run, I went to that Carrefour, put on the mask as I got on the escalator, but just looked around a little, going back out without getting anything and continuing to Kaufland. I was also considering that newer one, but that’d have meant passing by that Penny, in which case I’d have wanted to check that as well, and there was no time, so I went to the other one, getting there when it was already past 9:30 PM. Then I washed my hands, and was surprised to see that the employee was just then placing the bakery discount labels. In spite of that, only a few things were left, and what I’d normally care about didn’t seem discounted, yet I saw a sweet pastry that was new and asked her what it was, since there was no label whatsoever in that spot. Then I got a bread and a bundle of dill for dad, followed by the new cornmeal which they had started selling, wanting to see how it was, and the canned sardines I wanted, which I scanned in order to confirm that they were indeed discounted, since they were placed in two areas and all the price labels still listed the full price. And then I went back and got one of those sweet pastries after all, even if it didn’t look like what I had been told it was, at best being somewhat similar, in a way, and only the discount label had appeared by then, the one with the ingredients still missing. Either way, after having another look around, I got in line at the self-checkout a few minutes before closing time and was still in line when the announcement came, but had no problems with the machine. Then I went to a table and took some time to arrange the purchases in the bags before finally walking away, the somewhat unpleasant part of the walk back being that no streetlights were on around that cemetery, so I had to be careful where I stepped, to avoid the puddles.
After getting back, a little after 10:40 PM, I ate that sweet pastry, with added honey, and some peanuts brought by dad, finally went to the toilet and to shower when it was almost 12:15 AM, and came out when it was past 1:20 AM. However, I first clipped my toenails, being done with that at 1:30 AM and only then finally starting to make a pizza… Which I had to keep defending from Micky until I threw her out of the kitchen and closed the door. So, despite throwing on the ingredients unevenly, also not quite sticking to the plan I had made for them, and putting another cucumber instead of some more cabbage in the salad, in order to finish it sooner, it was still 3:35 AM when I started eating dinner… And exactly two hours later when I finished, since dad gave me some things to transcribe. At 3:52 AM he even sent me an e-mail to ask if I had finished any, then said that he couldn’t understand how come when I said that I had barely gotten on the computer and started eating, so I had to at least do one of the two, and in the end also did and sent the part of the other that he said he needed quickly.
Since that took me until 6:45 AM, I got in bed at 7 AM… And from 10:30 AM there was noise coming from above, likely the result of the leak which had been slowly flooding us getting fixed, so I was just getting brief naps. I also got up for a little while before dad left, to make sure that he took what he had to take to mother, and while I then got back in bed and only finally got up for good when it was past 3 PM, I got very little sleep during that time.
Moving on to June 11, I got up when the alarm rang, at 2 PM, had the usual stuff plus almonds, with the sweet thing being a slice of cozonac brought by dad, apparently from the press conference that he had brought those files that I had to transcribe from, with added honey, put on the full running gear, with some things in the pocket of my tights, and left a little after 4:30 PM, when the reported temperature was 21°C, holding steady. However, it had rained and was still drizzling.
The time was 1:19:08, with sector times of 4:29, 5:17, 6:05, 4:36, 5:15, 6:02, 4:37, 5:11, 6:07, 4:37, 5:11, 6:02, 4:35, 5:17 and 5:47, making for lap times of 15:51, 15:53, 15:55, 15:50 and 15:39. I felt so tired at first, thinking that I’ll struggle to even stay under 1:22, but wanted to at least stay under 16 minutes on the first lap, which I managed. Then, as I went along on lap two, I was thinking more and more that maybe I’ll stay under 16 minutes on that one as well and try to stay under 1:21 in the end. And when I did manage to cover that second lap in less than 16 minutes as well, I thought I’ll go lap by lap and tried to also stay under 16 minutes on lap three, managing that making me not only switch the target to 1:20:30, but also start to consider staying under 1:20. So I really went for it on lap four, thinking that staying under 16 minutes yet again was unlikely but nevertheless wondering whether I could, not thinking about what I’ll have left for lap five. And when that resulted in a lap that was faster than any of the first three, and which made me need exactly 16 minutes on lap five in order to stay under 1:19:30, I just kept pushing, even more on the last sector, just hoping for the 6:08 that I needed… And ending up 21 seconds faster than that, and with clearly the fastest sector three and lap of the day! I pushed myself so hard on that sector that I was drifting off, but just held it together. So it was the first time I went over 1:18 on 16 kilometers since March and the slowest time over this distance since January, but I was again pleased with the result in spite of that, seeing as it came only two days after those previous runs.
The drizzle slowed to occasional drops soon after I started, but what was strange was that the light drizzle returned on lap four even though the clouds started clearing from the end of lap three. But on lap five it was mostly sunny, the drizzle again slowing to just some drops and even those stopping almost completely by the time I finished. However, the lane was soaked in plenty of places, so I avoided it much of the time, and there were also some puddles to go around, but at least there weren’t many people. On the other hand, I felt so tired at first, though I slowly got used to it. What worried me was that something in my left hip hurt from the start, requiring some two laps to warm up enough for the pain to go away. And the right knee also started giving those warnings soon after I started, though those went away more easily.
Since I decided to come right back after the run, I ended up carrying those things that I had in the pocket of my tights for no reason, but I did go back out that evening, changing my shoes and taking the backpack, moving the bags to it and also putting the jacket in there, and leaving again a little after 6:50 PM. I had asked dad for two of those “Meringue” cakes that I had seen, as a reward for staying up in order to transcribe those things just after such a hard day, and he obviously didn’t care, so I went there myself, asking for his metro card and rushing to the Kaufland from Basarab, though I left buying what actually ended up being just one of those cakes for later, after having a look at that confectionery and seeing that there was no danger of them running out of them right away.
It was barely past 7:30 PM when I entered Kaufland, but the employee was already placing the bakery discount labels, so I grabbed a few things, plus two bags of Bake Rolls, deciding to use the money which would have been for the second cake in that manner. But I didn’t actually purchase those products just then, instead putting them in a bag and hiding it somewhere, since I also wanted to check that Carrefour and was thinking that the discounts might increase. So I went out and, even though it was hard to do so after that run, I jogged to that Carrefour and ended up grabbing an expiring yogurt and mustard. Then I had to spend time that I didn’t really have in one of the long lines formed at the regular checkouts, since I didn’t see self-checkouts that could be used with cash, eventually put the purchases in the backpack and jogged back. It was only then that I finally bought one of those cakes, then put it and the yogurt and mustard in a cabinet… And almost forgot the bag with the money, which I had placed in another cabinet for a moment, without closing the door, so it’s a good thing that I checked right away, before entering the store again, and went back for it. After that, I found my bag where I had left it, but decided to replace one of the Bake Rolls with a bag of their bagels, added some salt that dad had asked for, and went to the self-checkout when it was past 8:30 PM, seeing then that the discounts hadn’t increased. But at least I had no problems with the machine, then retrieved my things from the cabinet, arranged everything in the backpack and bags, and went back to the metro station. If I wouldn’t have spent that time arranging the purchases, and maybe if I’d have also jogged a little once again, maybe I’d have caught the metro which had left two minutes earlier, sparing me from needing to wait nine more minutes that I didn’t really have, until the next one came.
Still, I managed to get back at 9:25 PM and went to have a quick shower right away, before the match. Then I ate the cake and started making mamaliga, eating the Bake Rolls over a period of time and then stuffing myself at night. But then I was again unable to sleep, and after dad got back I started reading Postcapitalism, eventually catching a little over three hours of sleep before I yet again woke up and again found myself unable to get back to sleep, despite staying in bed for some two more hours before finally getting up.
This post was initially meant to include all the five runs that I’m yet to write about from before this summer’s Dream Trek, but this is how far I got before midnight and I need a first post of the week today, plus that at least at this point the time to write about Micky didn’t quite come, so I’ll leave it at this. What I’ll end up posting tomorrow, and it what state of mind, remains to be seen, but at least I do have one more slot for a personal post, so all the options are available.