Wednesday Wandering Mind, “I Run …”, Stopping the Streak, and My ‘8 Fears’

i Run

It has been a while since I did one of these Wandering Mind posts, but not for a lack of randomness! Since I have so much stuff … let’s get right to it!

1. Shaking Up The Workplace

A really interesting article at HuffPo last week looked at the worst places in the world to work. The worst places had obvious problems such as “murder and disappearance are regularly used to intimidate workers”. Denmark was the only country to meet all 97 worker’s rights criteria. How did WE do? Not so great … and really not a surprise to me.

The U.S., embarrassingly, scored a 4, indicating “systematic violations” and “serious efforts to crush the collective voice of workers.”

OK, that is fine – but what should YOU do?

Well, a few articles this week look at a variety of options. First off, you might need to deal with shifting workplace standards like this woman who suddenly found herself with a much younger boss. Personally for me the difficulty has always been the boss themselves, never the age – old, young, same age … who cares, doesn’t matter is they are good. Actually doesn’t matter is they aren’t good either – except that perhaps there is the opportunity for feedback to help them out more if they are younger (and if they are older and are lousy, that is really unfortunate).

You might even try to make big changes at your company – I know I read these posts about good and bad habits of various companies and see both sides in pretty much every company I have worked for or worked with.

But, ultimately maybe you have found yourself in a job or company you know you hate – check out this list of 10 reasons you need to quit your job in 2014 and see if it is time for a change.

2. National Running Day

Cori is hosting a link-up for National Running Day, and while we discussed the insular nature of many of these sorts of things (i.e. most of us will ‘run for running day’ … same as any other Wednesday), I still think that any effort to get people moving is a good thing – even if it is a ‘greeting card holiday’ (e.g. Brooks is sponsoring some of the efforts around, which gives them free advertising).

For my ‘story’ … well, I am going to be lazy and just refer back to my posts on the story – because it was just last week! Here is part one, and part two – which point to my guest posts for Laura here and here.

For today? Like I said, I got up and ran. And with no watch, no GPS, nothing – and I tried to mix up my route as much as possible in the time I have. Did about 9 or so miles, and felt lighter and speedier than I have since last week.

3. Powerful, Poignant Slam Poetry

My kids participate in an after school club called ‘WAS”, which stands for ‘wider arts society’. My older son did a slam poem at one meeting recently, and he previewed it to use … powerful stuff. This video was put up on YouTube a month or so ago and I have had it in a ‘drafts for later’ post ever since. It is something everyone should watch … and if it doesn’t move you, check your pulse.

4. On the Santa Barbara City College Shootings – Yes, The Onion is Satire, But …

I don’t even know where to start with the recent mass killing in California, but it was interesting that The Onion did a take that was poignant enough that there wasn’t the normal confusion over whether or not it was real, and people on my Facebook link just expressed sadness. I am not sure exactly what to do with that … but I’m pretty sure that it is meaningful.

Also, Mark Manson has an article on how we miss the point on these shootings. Thought provoking stuff.

5. Ending My Runner’s World Streak

I talked about the brutal hill repeats I did with my 12.5 mile run on Sunday on Instagram, and coming after my 14.5 mile long flat run on Saturday, as well as coming after 3 rest days in all of May … well, my body was telling me on Sunday that it was exhausted.

So I woke up on Monday ready to NOT run … and that was exactly what my body was telling me. I got up out of bed … then went back to sleep. Because a running streak is essentially meaningless – but listening to your body, is incredibly important.

6. Own Your Happiness

The other day Suz talked about regrets, and Sara in her ’10 Day You’ post ‘called BS’ on people who “don’t have at least one thing they wish they could go back and change.”

Over at Greatist, they take it a step further – rather than looking backwards, they look at the NOW. What can you do NOW to be mindful of all the little decisions we make every day to control our happiness? It is a fun little read – and it is always worth looking at the things we can do to improve the quality of our lives.

7. OK … just randomness

I love this video of a reporter trying to keep up with elite marathoners at the Stockholm Marathon.

What happens to our body when we stop drinking water?

More on Water – from Medium: ‘An Explanation of Water and Our Bodies’:

I drink lots of water but still feel thirsty!
This happens to a lot of people. Some research groups have calculated that about 95% of North Americans are constantly dehydrated. Normally trying to drink the right amount of water every day can fix this (side note: the ‘correct’ amount of water for you is half your weight in ounces, meaning a 150lb person should drink 75 ounces per day, equal to 2.25 liters), but most people don’t drink that much.

I have talked before how I really don’t like all of these artificial ‘love’ and ‘celebration’ days – Valentine’s, Mother’s, Father’s, Bosses, Grandparents, and so on. I love this Penny Arcade comic on the subject … because regardless of what we say, there are almost always at least minimal expectations.

I am often posting about the BS of the music business, and how much of what we think we ‘choose’ has been force-fed into our brains. So if you think music has become more diverse, or your tastes are ‘I will listen to just about anything’ – there is a REALLY big chance you are very wrong. Why? Because 1% of Artists Earn 77% of Music Revenue. So those few names you hear? The industry makes sure to concentrate YOUR dollars there to keep up their (the executives) revenue streams … which in turn makes a very few people very, very rich. All of whom are mainstream and have massive teams who do most of the work behind whatever you hear.

Are you a fan of the classic story Strega Nona? Here is a Barnes & Noble ‘Online Storytime’ feature on the book.

And finally – and assuming everyone knows already how I would feel about this … “11 Signs You’re A Men’s Rights Activist”

1. You have no problem with the gender wage gap. But you hate having to pay for dates.

2. You insist that it’s a scientifically proven fact that men are stronger than women. But you complain about society believing that it’s worse for a man to hit a woman than for a woman to hit a man.

3. You believe that the age of consent is unfair and that there’s nothing wrong with having sex with teenage girls. But when you find out that a teenage girl enjoys sex, you believe she’s the biggest slut in the world.

4. You hate when a woman automatically assumes that a man is a douchebag before getting to know him. But when you like a woman who likes another man, you assume he’s a douchebag just because he’s not you.

5. You believe that if women want equality, they should be drafted into the military. But you also believe that the military is not a place for women.

6. You hate when women assume that men are like wild animals. But you believe that a woman who doesn’t cover up and make herself invisible to men is just like someone wearing a meat suit around wild animals.

7. You hate the fact that men are bullied for not conforming to their male gender roles. But when you find out that a man disagrees with your beliefs about women’s rights, your immediate response is to try to emasculate him by comparing him to a woman as an insult.

8. You hate when women assume that there are no nice guys. But you call yourself a nice guy and act like it’s a rare quality that should cause women to be all over you.

9. You hate when women assume that men just want to get laid. But when you find out that a man is a feminist, you assume that he’s just doing it to get laid.

10. You hate when women make generalizations about all men. But when a woman calls you out for being sexist, you claim that all men think like you.

11. You insist that women should be responsible for protecting themselves from being raped. But when they follow the one piece of advice that actually works, which is being aware of red flags, you complain about them assuming that all men are rapists.

10 Day You Challenge

OK, so now I am up to Day 3, and the theme is Fear.

Day Three: Eight Fears

1. One of the boys dying – they say there is no worse feeling as a parent than losing your child … and honestly I never want to find out.

2. Lisa dying – at this point in my life I know people who have lost spouses. Not to freak accidents, but to cancer and heart attack and so on.

3. Being Unable to Provide for My Family – Getting laid off put the impermanence of things in perspective … and coupled with the info above about the US as a not-so-great place for workers, I worry that something will happen and I will not be able to work and keep us going financially.

4. Being stuck someplace confined – I don’t have severe claustrophobia, but I remember being a kid and having a narrow spot between rocks to get through … twice, and barely making it. Being larger than the other kids didn’t help.

5. Becoming Mentally Incapacitated – the threat of Alzheimer’s disease is very real and very scary. On the good side I look up and down both sides of my family and there is no history of dementia. But the thought of being unable to function in that way scares me.

6. Losing my vision – I am very fortunate to have great vision, but I have also noticed in the last couple of years that my up-close vision isn’t as strong as it used to be, to the point where for really small print I will just use the magnifier on my phone. I know reading glasses are in my future – which is fine … but the thought of being completely unable to rely on good vision? Not fun.

7. Losing My Love for Running – I hope to always remember that awful feeling of trying to restart running in March 2012, because (a) it makes me appreciate how far I’ve come, (b) it helps me empathize with others just starting out and (c) it is a reminder how different my post-thyroid landscape is.

8. Getting Fat – Yeah, this really shouldn’t come as a surprise. I know it is one of few things on this list entirely under my control, but it is still a deeply held fear that motivates me in many good and not-so-good ways.

Bonus. Miles Davis and Keith Jarrett – Last Concert of the Bitches Brew Era

From November of 1971, a DVD was made of the Miles Davis group that disbanded later that month. The group consisted of Miles on trumpet, Gary Bartz on saxophone, Keith Jarrett on electric piano and electric organ, Michael Henderson on electric bass, Leon Chancler on drums, and Mtume and Don Alias on percussion. The band represents the last links to the “Bitches Brew” era. The concert is sublime, and as the DVD is out of print, a YouTube version is available that no one seems worried about taking down.

Here is the entirety of the concert:

So what is wandering through YOUR mind today?

22 thoughts on “Wednesday Wandering Mind, “I Run …”, Stopping the Streak, and My ‘8 Fears’

  1. Glad you rested instead of keeping up with a run streak. Most runners probably don’t need yet another excuse to be rigid with training! I can be rigid but I know run streaks are not for me, I’d wind up with nothing to show for it except maybe a big fat injury 🙂

    After reading your fears I realized I also have a fear of not continuing to love running! Haven’t thought much about it before but I feel like it’s such a huge part of my identity now that having to let it go would be traumatic!

    • So true – and I was actually very proud of myself for being able to let it go so easily with no regret. A year or so ago and I would have been in a serious funk. No – I wouldn’t have stopped.

      And I hear you on the ‘part of your life’. Having my thyroid quit told me that ‘stuff changes’.

  2. I’m glad you listened to your body! First, you rested. Second, the fear of losing love for running faded away. Haha! 🙂 I understand your fear about losing one of your closest ones, that’s my biggest fear too! I can’t bare a thought of having to live without them. Finally, running without any gadgets is indeed liberating: you run for YOU 🙂 Great post! xoxo Olena

    • Thanks for hosting the link up!

      Efficient – I’ll take it! 🙂 Plus it gave another reason for some link-love to Laura’s blog, never a bad thing.

  3. Hmm, lots of links I want to check out when I have time, esp 2d link in 4, and the 1st link in 7. I’m totally afraid to list out my fears like that. Very brave! My top ones would be my husband dying, financial ruin, and my parents or siblings dying. And maybe dogs not on leashes. Probably having my husband leave me and getting fat would also make the list.

  4. I’m so glad you took a rest day on Monday, no use getting hurt for a streak that doesn’t really mean much. I have known a lot of runners who have streaked and run when they shouldn’t have for the sake of the streak and it usually doesn’t end well! I just started my “fears” post yesterday and we have some similar fears (1 & 2)! I hope you have a great day, my goal today is to get re-acclimated at the office, being out for a few days always puts me behind!

    • Thanks Sara – and getting back to the office is always ‘fun’ in that way! But I love that you got to see Ashton right away and had fun! When my kids were little and I took one or two trips a year they would put stickers on my bags and other fun things.

      So I am not really surprised that we have some similar fears 🙂

      And definitely agree on the running – my #1 priority is always “be able to get up and run tomorrow”. So when I felt like I needed rest, I am pleased that I listened to myself!

  5. I can honestly say that I agree with all of your fears and I know my husband agrees wholeheartedly with #3! #1 and #2 are obvious ones, but 6 and 8 are big fears for me as well. My eyes are my livelihood. And my vision is definitely not what it used to be after years of working on a computer. And you know my story about #8. 🙂

    I’m so glad you got out for a great run this morning and also that you took that rest day! I wish I hadn’t let my streak go so long or else maybe I wouldn’t have been so set back. I definitely have some regret about that one. (Although I did learn something from the injury…a little bit of a silver lining!)

    • It was interesting listing out fears – I found it more stressful than anything else so far, because listing them out meant visiting them in my mind. Which I did on a run, of course!

      And I agree with you on the injury thing – I think you have learned a lot from all of this, and we learned you’d run on the treadmill in street clothes to get your mile in 🙂 Definitely not worth it. 🙂

  6. Good for you on the rest thing. I decided not to continue it for the same reason … I haven’t actually had the day that my body was screaming for rest, but I wanted to be able to listen to it if (when) that day comes!

    • Good for you – everything I have read says that these streaks are stupid and bad for you. Yet I have no regrets from my 2012/13 mega-streak … none at all. And like I say, since I only had 3 rest days in May, I am already ‘verge-y’ on getting enough rest, so … I have decided that I will NEVER formally do another streak. (of course by ‘never’ I mean not soon! 🙂 )

  7. You covered quite a bit of ground today! I am really pumped to read the Greatist article, and I think that it is especially poignant in light of the 10 Day You challenge–it looks backwards, forwards, and at the present, ultimately (I should think) with the purpose of bringing us to the moment, with just a picture. Continuously whittling down to a single moment, which might be NOW. But at the same time, a picture will always be the past–a moment gone–but also the present, as something that we feel at that moment.
    Also, I’m glad that you ended your streak. They actually really annoy me because it signals to me ALERT HIGHER LIKELIHOOD OF GETTING HURT, especially if you don’t know enough to know warning signs to stop. And agreed on the “postcard/greeting card holiday” quality of National Running Day this year. I opted to talk about food. So what else is new?

    • Thanks Suz – and you are right about the progression of events in the 10-Day thing … though some are easier than others!

      I know I could have kept going with the streak, and the chance of injury is pretty low … but I know I did the right thing. I really thought a lot about it – people have told me how inspiring some of my stuff is, and even that my earlier running streak inspired them to try and my thought is NO! … I’ve written about not taking my advice before, perhaps I need a refresh …

  8. Good job listening to your body and taking a rest day! I worry that if I were to have committed to the streak I wouldn’t have been smart and may have run even though I needed to rest. Your ability to be smart is a great quality and probably why you have never been injured:)
    I totally fed into the whole National Running Day thing…but I was really surprised at how much it seemed to be commercialized. I really enjoyed reading about why people run, and I think it was a good opportunity to recognize and appreciate our love for running, and for new runners to start running! But I get what you’re saying about it becoming a greeting card holiday and used for advertising. Unfortunately it seems like most good things eventually move in that direction.

    • I look at it this way – if as a result of NRD you hooked in with at least one other person and had fun running … TOTAL win! Who cares the reason?

      And while I like to think I am smart about this stuff … I would bet I could name at least one person who would dispute that claim 😉

    • Thanks! I tend to see stuff and think ‘that’s cool’ and dump the links in a draft … some stop being cool, others stop being timely, so I am glad the ones I chose are fun.

  9. Pingback: Very Inspiring Blogger Award | Running Around the Bend

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