Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Behold, the pleasant and longed-for return of Spring!

Being it is now early April spring has started to return to my little part of the world. I love running in these transitional seasons -- as unpredictable as they can be -- partly because it gives me a chance to wake up my legs. I have an easier time adding speed in when the weather is warmer, where I tend to slog through my winter miles to maintain fitness.

We have had one snow storm a week recently, and they each deposit a couple of inches of snow. Usually the snow melts in a couple of hours but yesterday's winter squall is sticking around for a couple of days. I've thrown in extra cross training, and I'm hanging off the roads for now. I can't bring myself to muscle more miles out in the snow. I'm ready for the warmer weather!

My core feels really strong this year. I'm not sure if that's because of all the baby-wearing I do these days or what. I'm looking to get into Parkour. I've found a great program that separates out the conditioning with the actual wall-running stuff, and 80% of the workouts are done on the ground. I have been doing improvised drills with quadrupedal movements, crab walking, and walking on my hands. I'm doing more push ups and pull ups, and I'm feeling a stronger core for it.  I mix in the crab walking and quadrupedal movements into playing with the dog, so that has been lots of fun. My wife has even been getting into the conditioning stuff.

I love the philosophy that Parkour has of making one useful to their community. Marathon running can be a very selfish thing (if you don't raise money for charity, or whatever) and while I don't mind the selfishness because I feel like I deserve to do something for myself as an outlet, I also really like the idea of being a dependable part of a community.

Overall I see this as moving to a place where I'll add the Parkour in on some days, and then continue my marathon training. Hopefully it will help me build an even stronger core, and I'm hoping to maybe realize some benefits I haven't experienced before. So far I've been adding in quadrupedal movement drills in once a week. I try to do about 30 minutes of these drills, and I also try to get in some reps of pull ups and push ups. I usually hate cross training but I have been enjoying the parkour movement stuff this year.

I've also been eating better. Not necessarily better, I guess. Differently. I am hitting vegetables less hard than I should these days, and I'm eating many more seeds, nuts, and eggs. I still do eat vegetables but where I used to add a salad to my lunch every day I've lost that for the most part.  So hopefully that will help me rediscover my love of veggies. I have been loving duck eggs lately. They are a bit richer, and have more yolk, but they go so well cooked up sunny side up with some guacamole, salsa, and sour cream. I am also growing a vegetable garden this year, however (plants started are all over my kitchen!)

I started my plants from seed about a month ago, using a sort of mini green house and heat mat kit. They came up really quick, and I've had to transplant them. I'm now in a stage of keeping them going until they can go outside which should be around mid-late May. I have bell peppers, cucumbers, squash, lavender, basil and peperoncinis growing. I'm hoping to start tomatoes soon, too, but the seeds have taken some time to come in. If all goes well hopefully I'll have a garden with some decent yields all summer long. May cut back on how often I go to the market!

I want my daughter to grow up without all my weird food hangups. I want her to honestly make good decisions, so I know I'm going to have to provide good choices and set a good example. We will always have lots of produce, and hopefully this example-setting thing will keep my hand out of the cookie jar more often.

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