Monday, February 23, 2015

These Days

First things first.  I would be remiss if I did not - on behalf of the Missus and me - extend thanks and appreciation for all of the nice words and kind sentiments directed our way in the wake of the sudden death on Friday morning of our cat, Boo.  If you are a person who is not a pet owner and a human being mourning the loss of a pet strikes you as absurd, then please know that I understand your position completely.   Please know also that I shall not apologize for my position on the matter.  Nor shall I apologize for my statement, which I stand by, regarding my preference for animals over humans.  

I am sorry that Boo died - and remain at a loss trying to comprehend just what happened to her - but I am thankful that she neither lingered nor suffered.  Within the past several years ago, Margaret and I have had to put down two beloved four-legged members of the family.  On each occasion, the experience has been brutal.  Our little hater spared us having to endure it.  For that I am appreciative. After a lifetime of thirteen-plus years in which she appeared (on her best days) to barely tolerate us humans who were part of her day-to-day, it turns out she loved us after all.  Who knew? 

Her death now makes me the only being in our home who uses the basement treadmill.  Before anyone speed-dials PETA, Boo did not run on the treadmill.  Rather, she used to sit in the basement watching me run and then - almost immediately upon the completion of my run - hop up onto the machine and lie down on it.  Knowing how much she enjoyed the treadmill, I have now set her up in a spot where she can (a) continue to enjoy it; and (b) keep a critical eye on me to ensure that I run hard through every mile.

On Sunday morning, I kicked off this week's training for the New Jersey Marathon by hauling ass (relatively speaking) through fourteen miles on the treadmill.  My goal for this training run, which is the first one in this cycle to take me past the half-marathon, was the same as it has been for each and every training run, which was to run nothing slower than eight-minute miles.  Fourteen miles at eight minutes per mile works out to 112 minutes.  I banged my way through it in 107 minutes and thirty-nine seconds.  While covering fourteen miles in 1:47.39 shall not cause either Meb or my brother-in-law Russ to lose a minute's sleep, for me it was pretty damn satisfying. 

And given the way these past several days have gone, I am not about to turn my nose up at pretty damn satisfying. 


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