async="src="/ Taking the Long Way Home: Dancing in the Dark

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Dancing in the Dark

Disclaimer: As an ambassador for All Community Events, I received a free entry to the Pink Pumpkin Virtual race.

"You can't start a fire, 
Worrying about your little world falling apart. 
This guns for hire, 
Even if we are dancing in the dark." ~Bruce Springsteen, Dancing in the Dark

For me, everything in life is all about the music. You've probably noticed that I share a lot of songs and lyrics both here and on my social media. This song, Dancing in the Dark, seemed like an obvious theme for my run in the dark this week. But I dug beyond the title, into the lyrics of this song, that at the surface seems to be joyous and fun. It's really not a joyful song at all. The song was written by Springsteen out of frustration in his ability to come up with a hit song but being true to himself. For me, it speaks to that feeling of living every day on what feels like repeat as the pandemic rages on. 

Deep thoughts for a tough time. Hang in there friends. It's going to get bumpier. We're seeing the covid case count go back up at the hospital again. Stay healthy and keep wearing your mask. 

And keep on running...


Weekly Rundown
Monday: CrossFit
Tuesday: rest
Wednesday: Run 5.5 miles
Thursday: Strength train
Friday: trail run 6 miles
Saturday: trail run 9 miles
Sunday: Pink Pumpkin 10k

Running

An 8 am work start on Wednesday meant I had to get out the door before the sun came out if I wanted to get my miles in. I strapped on my headlamp and ran the mile from my house to the bike path. As I ran, the light on my headlamp dimmed to nothingness. Although I've never run on the bike path in the dark, I figured that with it's smooth surface, it was probably a better bet than the road. Can I just tell you that it was a little creepy? The garbage cans looked like monsters and there were other people out there walking who seemed to appear out of nowhere. It's a good thing we don't have wild animals here. When I turned around to head back, I was happy to see the pink glow of dawn. I had a good run, a good laugh about it, and a good story to tell. I also made sure to replace my headlamp batteries as soon as I got home!

Friday was an education day for me and with my conference being held virtually, I had a little extra time in the morning. The sun was just coming up when I headed to the trails. It was a cool morning and I had the trails to myself. With the trees in full color, I couldn't not do a few miles on the single track. It looked completely different than last week! I wish I could bottle up the pretty colors with the sun streaming through the trees. What a gorgeous morning. When I finished up in the woods, it was back on the main path for a nicely paced finish. I hated to stop! I got home just in time to log on to the conference. It was kind of nice not to have to shower or get ready to go anywhere.


We had planned another trip to Wisconsin for the weekend, but with 50 MPH winds and rain predicted, we stayed home. Early Saturday morning, I took my run to a new to me segment of the Des Plaines River Trail, running an out and back. This was a gorgeous, flat trail--the trees were in full color and provided a canopy overhead for most of the trail. This trail follows the river and at one point, runs through the town of Des Plaines on a concrete sidewalk until it rejoins the wooded trail again. I loved this trail and I will definitely run it again!


When I headed out Sunday to run the Pink Pumpkin Virtual 10k, it wasn't raining. About 2 miles in, it started to pour. What else could I do but push the pace to finish fast? I thought about my sister recovering from chemo. I channeled grief and anger into my run. Between the rain and the run, I felt like a new woman when I finished. My finish time of 55:28 put a smile on my face too! It's been a long time since I've seen those numbers and hell yeah, it felt good.


Strength/CrossFit

Monday's WOD was all metabolic conditioning. Each of us had a rower in our box; we started out with a 1200m row, 14 plate to overhead lifts (25#), and because it was World Burpee Day, 7 plate hop burpees. With each round, we dropped 200m from the row, ending with a 400m row. By the end of this workout, we rowed 4000m. It was as hard as it sounds, but everyone in the class finished under 30 minutes. Boom.

World Burpee Day!

On Thursday, SJ had me work on deadlifts. Since this is my heavy strength cycle, yep, it was heavy. I did 4 sets of 10 deadlifts at 135#. The look on my face in the photo SJ took says it all. I didn't have to drop a rep, but there was a point where I wasn't sure I could finish. Between sets, I did 10 V-ups. After I recovered from that, I cleaned a barbell (65#) to my back and did box stepups, 6 on each leg x 3. This was hard, not just because of the weight but also because it required balance. By the end, I was struggling with straightening my stepping leg before I put my opposite foot on the box. The best part was that SJ let me roll the bar off my shoulders, letting it drop to the floor instead of lifting it over my head and putting it down in front of me!

As seen on the run...

I may live in the busy suburbs of Chicago, but the forest preserves provide respite from the busyness. I'm always amazed at what I see when I run on the trails. 



Anyone think of the Keebler elves with this tree? 

My deer friends were out in force this week!

One last thought about music...



How was your week? Any funny running stories? Do you run with music? BTW, on the trails, I don't. Are you interested in running the Pink Pumpkin virtual run for breast cancer? The race benefits the Susan G Komen foundation. There's a 5k, 10k, and Half Marathon option. Use my code AMBASSADOR2020 to save 10%. 


I'm linking up with Deborah and Kim for the Weekly Rundown. 










38 comments :

  1. You sure do have some beautiful trails to run on by you. Another strong week for you! Daily sweats continue to be the best mood elevator for me as well. I almost feel sorry for those who don't take advantage. stay safe at work! They are lucky to have you

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  2. Woo-hoo on the 10k! That's even more impressive that you did 9 miles the day before and still got that number! I feel like I've gone from 100% running with music to maybe 60-70%. And while I don't run in the dark anymore because I've fallen a few times, but I do have some good memories. I remember once running across the railroad bridge near my house and finding myself instantly in total darkness on the other side and there was something about it that was very exhilarating.

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    1. 100% agree on that exhilarating feeling! So scary yet so fun!

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  3. I love your trails, your speed and your strength this week. That headlamp tale of woe though - spooky times! It's so annoying when that happens. Fortunately we have mostly decently lit streets around here, as I need to start running earlier again, in the dark, to avoid the school traffic.

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    1. I could have run on the streets but I don't like it at that time of the morning. People still half asleep, not paying attention...

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  4. The trails are at their absolute best right now. Glad you got out to enjoy them. Great work on that 10k!

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  5. We've booked a trip to Flagstaff for Thanksgiving (just the 2 of us and we're driving.) We're planning a day trip to the Grand Canyon so decided it was time to start training. 3.5 miles this morning with over 800' of climbing and descending. Definitely don't listen to music on the trails, need to be able to hear as mountain bikers approach.

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    1. Sounds like an amazing trip! We took the boys to the Grand Canyon about 15 years ago. Hard to believe it's been that long.

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  6. You really have some lovely trails near you, particularly this time of year! You're so right that Covid is here for awhile longer...people, keep wearing your masks! I want to keep masks a normalized part of life for things like flights forever!

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    1. I am so used to it, working in healthcare. I don't mind it too much.

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  7. YES YES on running with music helping.
    I'm not the biggest Bruce fan in general, but his songs are so good for running.
    Love your colorful trails and congrats on the amazing race
    HUGS on all the things.

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    1. I'll take any and all hugs! I sure miss hugs right now!

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    2. Me too. SO weird not to hug my mom when I saw her. Elbow bumps got old early.
      I look forward to the day where we can meet up and hug

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    3. I will admit to hugging a few people lately. A mom in my office in tears. My sister. My son.

      I look forward to a hug from you too! <3

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  8. Ah, that sunrise is gorgeous! Love all the scenery from your trail runs. LOL at the Keebler Elves tree!
    I hope your sister is doing OK.

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  9. I absolutely use music to deal with so many things in life. I can always find a song to match my mood.

    I love all the photos from your trail runs this week - especially your deer friends :)

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    1. My deer friends were everywhere! Making babies, I guess... :P

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  10. I think my getting lost basically right where I need to turn back to get back to my car was my funny story of the week -- now. At the time it was not funny at all.

    The preserve with the duck hunting is one I am dying to run at now. Nice, flat trails. The pond we walked out was pretty technical, and with all the leaves can be downright dangerous. Sure is pretty though & I plan to be going there a lot in the future!

    Love, love, love "Dancing in the Dark". Remember how young Courtney Cox looked in that!

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    1. It's funny how we have those images of people from the past, as if they were frozen in time!

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  11. Love all your fall photos.

    And congrats on your 10K...that is a great time. I'd be embarrassed to tell you how slow my half was but it's done.

    Some of my faster races have been in the rain...just want to get done. lol

    When my runs are hard, I also think about those who can't and those going through harder things.

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    1. Don't be embarrassed about your half...remember I had a terrible one a few weeks ago. A personal worst!

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  12. Your trail runs are so pretty! There are street lights where I run but I still like having my headlamp to help me see better. Congrats on your speedy 10k!

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  13. Thinking of you and your sister. All of my early morning rides are spent in thought and prayer for the many people I know who are battling health issues and strife in general. Your trails look beautiful!

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  14. We have street lights in the neighborhood and that makes the dark morning runs bearable, but if I head out to the bike trail I get major creepies running in the dark even with a headlamp! Great job on the 10K and other workouts this week. Those weights look really heavy!!

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    1. I get the creeps no matter where I run when it's dark out! Which is why I avoid it as much as possible.

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  15. I do run with music. Although I like running sans music too.

    I am loving the pictures from your trail runs. Yeah, we don't have those here in the city.

    Great job on your virtual race!

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  16. I really enjoy your blog, Wendy! I look forward to the encouragement and ideas. THANK YOU!
    And I'm so sorry to hear about your sister! I'm happy she has such a supportive and knowledgeable sister in you.

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    1. Aww, Kemmy, you just made my day. My sister's diagnosis is bringing back the days of HNS. Even tho I'm a peds nurse, I cared for a lot of cancer patients and became OCN certified when I worked there. I know way more than I want right now. Good thing that symptom management has improved so much since then.

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  17. Such beautiful trails you have near you! Congrats on your speedy 10K!!

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    1. I always took my trails and paths for granted until this year. They've really been a gift to my mental health!

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  18. What a fun race idea! We didn't get to do our annual pumpkin run, here. Boo.

    I don't even know how our numbers are doing here. The state and county are so bad about publishing. Three schools in the next county had to shut down for a week or two, so we will see what happens here. The not knowing is just so hard.

    Looking strong!

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    1. I'm grateful that Illinois is so transparent about what is happening. Of course, there are people who don't like that. (eye roll)

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