The 1000 Missed

Posted by on January 3, 2012

Blue Day Run
This year (2011) I missed hitting my 1000 mile goal.  Why?  Several reasons….

  1. We moved to China.   I lived on the 29th floor of a high rise on on Cougar Mountain two minute walk to trails;  But we did live right across from Chao Yang Park which had kilometers of trails and I did run there often.  But the move was definitely a factor, though I did end up riding my bike to and from work most every day. In the end the biggest impact of the move really was on my elevation since Beijing is really flat and there is no close place to hike.  I had to settle for monthly trips to the Great Wall, I know that sounds real rough but I was used to hiking/running with elevation on a weekly basis and I have felt my legs go a bit and my left knee is acting up again when I push it.  I’ll have to add in more stairs this year (walking up and down the 29 floors in our building several times).  China has a couple of sub-issues :
  2. The Great Firewall – I know this seems a little lame.  But part of the reason for the goal is having a daily/weekly goal in front of you to motivate and inspire.  This goal has taught me over and over that you accomplish great things one little task at a time day by day not through some huge momentous event all at once.  Any great thing anyone has done happens because of a 1000 little things they accomplished and achieved days before. Basically China blocks lots of sites, Google Docs is one of those sites, that is where I track my mileage.  You can get around the GFW by using proxy servers or VPN but it slows things way way down and somewhere in August my spreadsheet got too large to load over the proxy server and most of the time I couldn’t update it.  So I fell by the way side keeping track of where I was and this took a bit of the challenge out of me.
  3. Pollution.  No doubt about it Beijing has some bad pollution.  There are days when its really bad.  And there are days that are not so bad.  And finally there are days are crystal clear.  Clear days are usually because of a big wind and if its winter then it means that its also freezing freezing cold.  I will run in not-so-bad days and clear days if the wind won’t kill me but the bad days cut down on how many days you feel like you can actually get out without taking years off your lungs.
  4. Wedding : Basically we were on the road for the last 2 and half weeks of December with Kiah’s wedding.  6 flights, 9 different residences and 3 receptions in 5 cities, two major holidays and a National Park.  We were busy.  Usually in December I am behind on my miles so I am doing things like running 23 miles on Christmas Eve but not this year, with everything going on I didn’t have the time or energy to be doing all of that and run.  So I pretty much resigned myself to not hitting the goal as we approached November; I’d much rather enjoy the wedding than hit my personal goals.
And in the end I still got out; I still kept busy and active each week, just not always with the miles to add up to the goal. Who knows maybe I got close but I didn’t keep track for the last two months at all.  Though even amidst the wedding festivities I ran a fast 5K at -5 degrees in Mendon, hiked to Angel’s Landing and Dawn Patrolled to the morning light.  And New Years Day to start out the New Year I went on a run with Hope and I didn’t even record how far I went; maybe I’ve moved beyond measuring.  Somehow I doubt it but we’ll see.

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