Frozen heart

I'm starting to worry that constantly writing about my Couch to 5K routine is becoming arduous and boring to anyone who reads this on a daily basis. Also, if you are out there and reading this on a daily basis, bless your soul. There are days when I go back and read some of the these daily blogs and cringe a little. It seems like quite a few of the people following me on Wordpress are in the fitness community, so I'll continue to talk about my running blunders and tribulations, hopefully it's inspiring to a person or two. After failing Monday's workout in spectacular fashion, I decided to split today's workout into two 3/4 mile runs. I warmed up, ran the first chunk, rode the stationary bike for 10 miles then ran the rest of the workout. For some reason the second run was much smoother than the first. I even sprinted for the last tenth of a mile. I'm not sure what to make of this development; perhaps I need to warm-up more before I start my runs. I'm not sure the five minute brisk walk warm-up is enough to get me ready for a big run. It's almost like writing: I have to engage my brain on a task for a good twenty minutes before I am fully ready to commit to whatever project is in front of me. To the people who can get right out of bed and do a five mile run, I salute you. I salute anyone whose minds can go from 0-60 on a task in five seconds flat. My mind works more like a turn the 20th century car that requires a hand crank to start.

I know what a lot of people are going to say, "but Justin, you need to stick to the routine that is written out for you!". I know. I know. The only reason I'm deviating from the standard Couch to 5k routine is that my legs were just not prepared for two half mile runs in such a short time span. I'm going to use these next two workouts as an opportunity to get these old tree trunks used to moving that much, and next week I will reattempt the normal week 4 workout. I'm not afraid to spend an extra week now on conditioning, I think it will pay dividends in the long run.

Get it. Long. Run. I'm here all week people. Actually, I'm here all year. Let's just move on, shall we.

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I can't help but notice that all of the short stories I've been working on to start the year have been downers. The piece I wrote for this site was about a relationship imploding in on itself, and the two pieces I've been kicking around for awhile have to do with how people deal with breakups. Since I don't plan out what I'm going to write about in advance, there is always a bit of interesting introspection that happens after I finish a first draft of a story.

I'm not sure why I've gravitated towards writing about break-ups lately. I haven't been in a serious relationship in over a decade. If anything, I should be writing sappy, romantic love stories in which I pine after intelligent, beautiful goddesses. I guess what I'm trying to process is my own commitment issues that are as deep seeded as Norman Bate's mother issues. My parents separated when I was a toddler. Then my father got remarried and had a rather tumultuous relationship with my stepmother, the woman who did a lot of heavy lifting when it came to raising me. They called it quits when I was in college. It was not a pleasant experience.

Perhaps now that I'm writing on a more consistent basis, my brain is finally starting to try to workout some of the issues I have with commitment, relationships and marriage. I'm also at that stage in my life where everyone around me is getting married, having kids, and unfortunately, having to go through the gauntlet of hell that is divorce. I've been so wrapped up in my own web of insecurities and depression for the last couple of years to be able to even try to make sense of what motivates people to make lifetime commitments to one another, and in turn,  what drives them to break those commitments. I think there are so many biological, sociological, and increasingly, technological aspects to what makes a relationship succeed and fail in the modern world that you could spend a lifetime studying it and never be able to fully grasp the issue.

I enjoy the hell out of a good love story. Unfortunately, lately when I'm watching a movie like Before Sunrise I am always thinking about how things can, and often do, eventually go wrong. That's why I found Before Midnight to be so powerful, because it seemed like the most honest movie of the trilogy. I hate that I have such a pessimistic view when it comes love, but it's where I am at right as a person, and it shows in my writing. Perhaps when spring arrives, and the deluge of weddings is upon us all, I will go back to being the romantic that I have been in years past. I'm jaded enough as it is, but to turn my back on something as beautiful and life affirming as love is a bridge too far.

So spring, I beg of you, please melt my frozen heart in your warming embrace, so I may love again.

Love, Justin.