Saturday, April 24, 2021

I'm Languishing ...plus I Tried it! Nathan SaferRun Personal Alarm and Strobe

Disclaimer: I received the Nathan SaferRun Personal Alarm and Strobe in exchange for my honest review. This post contains affiliate links.

Earlier this week, Shiastho messaged me with a link to an article that I had just pulled up on my computer. Turns out great minds do think alike! The New York Times article we both read describes the feeling of not being depressed but not feeling well as languishing, the 'middle child of mental health'. A few months ago, after I received my second dose of the vaccine, I was so hopeful, but that hope faded quickly. Nothing was changing. I felt stuck. 

Apparently, I've been languishing.

Earlier this year, I described my feelings in a post about anxiety. While I've gotten my anxiety under control, that blah feeling remains. I'm not depressed. I'm just meh. That 'meh' feeling is what the NYT article addresses. The article suggests looking for small wins as a way to get past languishing. The author suggests finding 'flow' by immersing yourself in an activity or project. She also suggests setting boundaries, a time when you can't be interrupted. My runs have been that for me, particularly my time in the woods, which gives me a break from all the noise and usually brings me joy.

But then my run ends and it's back to life as it is. 

However, there is hope. The verdict in the George Floyd murder trial gives me hope for healing in our country. And while COVID cases are on the rise, with 50% of adults in this country having gotten at least one vaccine, that increase in cases isn't explosive. The country is slowly opening back up. I ran a live race in Chicago last weekend, a city with one of the strictest lockdown policies in the country. 

Having a name for how I've been feeling gave me that 'aha'! moment, even though it means I'm languishing. Sometimes, it's just nice to know that it isn't just you. We got this.

Wednesday's trail run

Weekly Rundown
Monday: rest
Tuesday: rest
Wednesday: trail run 6 miles
Thursday: Cross Fit with 1250m running
Friday: run 6 miles
Saturday: trail run 7 miles
Sunday: sister day! Brunch and Monet

Running

We had rain and snow in the forecast this week, but fortunately, we got none of it! When I drove to the forest preserve for my trail run on Wednesday, the sun was shining. The air temperature was a little cool, in the 40s, but I was overdressed. After a loop around the lake, I returned to my car and delayered. I headed to the single track along the creek. The trails are really dry and the creeks are pretty low. We do need rain. Things are in bloom, though, and it's nice to see flowers popping up along the trail as well as green everywhere! The only issue I had with this run was some fatigue and a stomach ache. Hoping it's just a little bug I picked up somewhere. I pushed through it and felt good afterward, which is what counts. 

Feeling much better as the week went on, I took my feet to the bike path on Friday morning for my weekly 6 miler. I worked on holding back and I was happy with my nice steady pacing on this run. The weather was perfect. I do love these cool spring mornings for running!


As has been usual for the past couple of weeks, the forecasters got it wrong again. Predicting doom and gloom, heavy rain all day, I woke up Saturday to clouds but no rain. I drove to the preserve with the nice flat trail with a plan to run 8 miles. I just could not get in a groove. A couple miles in, I passed one of the single tracks that intersect with the main trail and figured sure, why not? It's my new motto, apparently! I dove into the woods and took this meandering trail as far as it would go. Eventually, the trail followed the river. The water is really low and this exposed all kinds of interesting things including garbage in the river (ick) but also some big trees that the beavers have been working on. This was a really fun trail segment and helped take my mind off my misery. Once I got back on the main trail, I started to feel yucky again. I was glad to be done with the run.


Crossfit/Strength

I skipped Monday's WOD to take Cocoa to the vet in Madison for suture removal!!! She did so well and we had lunch with my youngest son at a restaurant where they allow dogs. She's now out of the cone, thanks to Pepe Le Pew who sprayed her on Tuesday morning. Fortunately, the cone soaked up most of the spray and after a baking soda/peroxide/Dawn scrubbing, she's fresh as a daisy. And free of the cone one day early. I guess the skunk did her a favor!

Lunch with Matthew in Madison
She was so well behaved at the restaurant!

On Thursday, I signed up for the WOD, since Sammy Jo was out of town. This was a fun WOD! For the strength portion, we did 4 rounds each of sled sprints x100m, pistol squats x 5 each leg, and 20 ab mat situps. The Metcon was 6 rounds x 2 minutes of a 100m sprint!, 12 ball slams, and AMRAP single arm push presses (15#). The run made me competitive and I finished with 142 push presses total! 

I Tried It! Nathan SaferRun Personal Alarm and Strobe

I've written a few posts over the past couple of years about safety on the run. In fact, one of my most popular posts of all time features self-defense weapons for runners. In that post, I share a variety of devices that runners could use for protection. Recently, I was offered the opportunity to try the Nathan SaferRun Personal Alarm and Strobe. I almost always run alone and I usually carry at least one form of protection in addition to my phone and roadID. The Nathan SaferRun Personal Alarm and Strobe clips onto your waistband. There's a ripcord at the bottom which you can pull to activate the alarm. The alarm is LOUD--the company says it is 115 db and audible at over 600ft. There is also an LED strobe light on the top of the device which is easy to activate. I was worried that I would accidentally activate the alarm while I was running. I didn't, but fortunately, the cord is easy to push back in should that happen. Nathan also offers a RipCord Personal Alarm without the strobe. The RipCord Personal Alarm was named one of the best inventions of 2019 by Time magazine. I am happy to add the SaferRun Personal Alarm to my running gear!


How was your week? Are you enjoying spring weather or have you already started summer? Do you carry any self-defense devices when you run? How are you feeling these days?

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






39 comments :

  1. I do not carry anything. I try to run on safe places and do my long runs with friends.

    A return to racing has definitely helped my mental state and that my friends have gotten their vaccines so I am seeing more of them.

    We have summer then winter and hopefully spring before summer...our weather which comes from the West lol

    So happy to hear about Cocoa and hope you can keep your spirits up... Those trails!! Love your pix,


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    1. I think we all try to run in safe places but is anywhere truly safe?

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  2. Interesting but not surprising that so many of us feel like we are “languishing”. I think I’ve got a bit of that plus a bit of stress about going back to the office — which is still a ways off — I guess I feel more like I am in an airplane in a seemingly endless holding pattern. When we will land this plane and get on with it?

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    1. I've been in the office all year but I want to start seeing sick patients again! I know that may sound weird, but I enjoy using my brain to figure out illness, rashes, etc. Wellness visits can get pretty monotonous.

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  3. Interesting SD device. I suppose that might scare off animals as well as humans. I runfess the pandemic doesn't really give me anxiety anymore and I don't expect Covid to ever truly go away. I am concerned about those who choose not to vaccinate though. Glad to hear Cocoa came through everything like a champ!

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    1. The company says it's as loud as an ambulance--I tried it in the house and not so much. But it is loud!

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  4. Yes, languishing! I am anxious about getting back out there, I had a good chat with Trudie today about how the charity shops are being really careful, with hand sanitizer at the door etc so might venture out in the week (tho I do probably have enough books ...).

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  5. interesting perspective on languishing. I am not feeling the anxiety and fear I was last year. I actually feel very hopeful for the future. I really never run alone so I have not tried any of the safety devices. I would use something like that on a Ragnar race for example. That is the only time I ever felt scared out on a run.

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    1. I'm definitely feeling more optimistic as things open back up! But it was nice to actually see some justification to how I've been feeling.

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  6. You know that I can totally relate to the feelings of anxiety! I love your perspective on languishing and how to look for the small wins - that makes a lot of sense. Sorry that Cocoa was sprayed by a skunk :( but glad that she was able to get the cone off a day early and that overall she is doing well - she is just the cutest!

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    1. Kim!!! So good to hear from you! Here's to better days ahead, am I right?

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  7. I definitely think alot of us can relate to that feeling! That personal alarm looks like a good option. I wear a Run Angel which has a button you push to activate an alarm, which also alerts a contact that you need help and sends them your location. I like the idea of pulling on the device to activate it- seems pretty easy.

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    1. I like the idea of a device that can notify your contact that things are not ok! Yesterday when I was exploring that new trail, I suddenly felt a sense of 'oh I am so alone here'. If anything were to happen...yikes, don't want to go there.

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  8. I saw the languishing article when it came out this week, and I think it's an interesting point. I've had a few bouts of depression throughout my life and pretty much all of them were proceeded by an extended case of the blahs.

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    1. I sure don't want anything more than the blahs...but I am ready to get out of this rut!

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  9. I also saw that article! I can't say it describes me, but I think both my kids are "languishing."
    I've been wondering what you do for safety on your runs, since it seems like you run alone on trails a lot. I'm thinking of getting this alarm- anything else you recommend?

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    1. I always carry my phone and most often I'll wear my GoGuarded ring on the trails. If I run early in the morning, I will wear the alarm.

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  10. Other than several hours of snow (Monday morning), and maybe 30 minutes of light sprinkles around lunch time today...we've had zero precip. As much as I loathe rain (or snow), I know we need it. Now we have a couple days of 80F temps in the forecast LOL Spring has been a paradox here...

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    1. Well, ok, glad to know the weather is pretty much what you expect this time of year!

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  11. Poor Cocoa! Where was the skunk? Has she seen one before? I wonder if she "learned a lesson" or will get too close again??

    I have anxiety about going back to the office. I've been so happy working from home. I'm excited for some normalcy though, like marathons and seeing my family. I think my grandmother's funeral will be my first indoor 'event' since March 2020. (Fortunately masks are required). I'll be 'fully vaccinated' by then but I still have anxiety about it!

    That alarm sounds pretty awesome; I run alone a fair amount in the dark too (not as much right now when its lighter in the morning!) and it would give me a bit of comfort. Great review!

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    1. I just couldn't believe it, after all she'd been through, that she got skunked. My last pup didn't learn from experience. She was skunked a few times. We are always prepared with peroxide/baking soda/Dawn on hand, lol!

      So sorry about your grandmother! Funerals do make me nervous under the best of circumstances, but more so now than ever. I have family that just don't believe in COVID, so I did skip my uncle's funeral recently. I went to a wake a few weeks ago and the bereaved family did not wear masks. Odd, I know...

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  12. So interesting about the "languishing" perspective. I'm going to go back and read the article. Overall, I'm feeling a lot less anxiety, but do have some bouts of the blahs.

    That alarm sounds like a great addition to your running tool box. I runfess that I do not run with any safety devices...perhaps I should.

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    1. I definitely don't have much anxiety anymore, but the blahs come and go. Hopefully that will improve too as things open back up!

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  13. I don't run with anything. But I'm very aware, which has helped keep me safe for over 40 years of running. My latest annoyance is untrained loose dogs.

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    1. I agree with the awareness but here at least, there are occasional incidents at the forest preserves, which is where I run. And yes to the annoying loose dogs!

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  14. I am very busy, and I guess that helps to take my mind off things most of the time. It's been a tough year+ for everyone for sure.

    We did get rain, and some Wintry mix. Good week to not feel well! And it looks like we're gonna get some May showers, too, but we'll see about that.

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    1. I keep pretty busy too, but it's not the kind of busy I want to be! Just work and stuff. It's time to bring some fun back into the mix.

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  15. Languishing is such a good word. Thanks for always being an ear.
    Glad Cocoa had a skunk assist in getting out of the cone adn that she's healing so well.
    I briefly installed the Citizen app on my phone to try and ID some sirens and had to take it off. It's not that it makes it more unsafe, I just do't want to know everything that's called in

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  16. I'm sorry about the languishing. I think that's a great way to describe it and I think so many people feel it or something similar. We are going to see the mental fallout of this for a very long time to come, I'm afraid. Cocoa pics help. A lot :)

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  17. I read this article about languishing as well and knew that's exactly what I was feeling!!

    I don't take anything on the run with me, or with my walks, though Ron does "follow" me on the phone so he has an idea where I am. Not sure if he looks all the time though since I'm always out! I was thinking about it this morning though as I was walking through the woods early... we don't have a lot of "jogger" attacks here, thank dog, but sometimes I do wonder if I should take something to protect myself.

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    1. Believe it or not, there aren't a lot of 'jogger' attacks here either, but there are a few every year. I wear my GoGuarded ring on the trails--I don't think I'd have the presence of mind to use pepper spray or anything else if I needed it!

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  18. Now that is one word I've never heard. I think that also describes me as well. Interesting. Poor Cocoa. Hopefully now there will be no more incidents with her. Your son looks so much like you. As you know I also run alone but don't carry anything with me (besides my phone and I just ordered a new nameplate for my RoadID). Many times I forget to take my pepper spray with me. I need to revisit your list again.

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    1. It's always good to have some form of protection when you run! Besides attracting attention, the alarm could also scare off attackers. It's really loud!

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  19. I have a similar device to the Nathan SafeRun Personal Alarm that I've had for over 20 years and as you would expect, it's huge as compared to the Nathan. It amazes me how things have been able to get so much smaller and compact over the years. It's so large that I've not carried it for years, but it does come in handy to get the turkey vultures to fly off of our deck.

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