Monday, 21 April 2014

How to deal with #OMTOM #FOMO

So while the rest of the South African running community flocked down to Cape Town for the Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon (#OMTOM) this past weekend, we were living it up here in Bloem.  Womp, womp.  Twitter was just cruel: The photos, the updates and the fact that almost every runner on Mother City soil got to meet the world marathon record holder...  I sure did love following everybody's journeys, but doing it from way over here in the Free State kind of stunk.  Boo.

So what's a girl to do?  Easy.  Recreate the Two Oceans weekend at home.  No ocean(s)?  No problem.  Call it Two Mealies (we have plenty of those) - Designed for Fun - and have a blast anyway.  Which is exactly what we did.

First up was Friday's trail run.  Set against the magnificent backdrop of the, uhm, nameless hill in the Free State Botanical Gardens, our run took us over some surprisingly challenging climbs.  And through some think sand and gravel.  It was a whopper, and we were in our element.

Next up: The Nappy Dash.

Once K got dashing, she just didn't want to stop, ha!  We dashed to the playground, dashed to the loos, and then dashed to the car to head back home...  Loved.  It.

My little nappy dasher.

Our final item of the weekend was the Saturday morning road run.  K didn't feel like joining me, so I headed out solo, bursting with inspiration from the live #OMTOM TV broadcast.  I didn't do 21 km, and I certainly didn't do 56 km, but I did my longest long run since J's birth 4 months ago and felt strangely connected to all the fellow runners sweating it out over Chappies.  Mission accomplished.

So even though I'd love to swap Two Mealies for Two Oceans next year, this weekend taught me an important lesson: Adventure happens wherever you create it.  Duly noted.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Battle of the Weirdos

You know I love running, right?  But sometimes I think that running brings out the weirdness in people.  And I'm not referring to runners only.

The fact that running brings out the weirdness in runners is actually not news at all: We're talking about a bunch of early-rising, lycra- (or short broeks-) loving, everyone-has-a-port-a-loo-story people (including yours truly), remember?

Running.  Guaranteed to bring out the weirdo in you.

But the fact that running also brings out the weirdness in (some) non-runners is not as well documented.  But still very true.  Case in point: Shouting comments at runners from moving vehicles.  Who does that?!  Who on earth goes to the trouble of opening a car window and hurling a comment at a complete stranger?  A stranger who's making an effort to be healthy?  Now that's just weird.  And it happens a lot.

I've experienced my fair share of comment hurling.  Both good and bad.  And some of them extremely funny, I must admit.  Like the latest one: K and I dropped J off at home after our double-strolling stint through the security complex last week, and then headed out for a long(er) run.  With an empty-seated double stroller (given, that's a bit like an open invitation to comment hurlers).  As we rounded the final corner of our run, a women driving past us literally hung out of her car window, shouting: "You've lost one of your babies...!".  Ha, I couldn't help but giggle.

A double stroller with one empty seat.  An open invitation to comment hurlers everywhere.

A similar incident happened when K was about 6 months old.  We went for an early morning run with the single stroller and just as I was getting into my groove and starting to feel all hard core and all, an older lady (do ladies shout out of windows?) drove past us and shouted: "Keep on running, Mama!  At this rate you'll have your pre-pregnancy body back in no time!".  Now this would have been very motivating and all, except that I had already reached my pre-pregnancy weight about a month before that.  Uhm, yeah.

Then there's also been the I love yoouuuuu's, the Marry meeeeeeee's (?!) and the Hallo you twooooo's (when running solo)...  And the list goes on.  I must admit that I'm not really a fan.  So, comment-hurling non-runners, take it from this early-rising, lycra-loving, runner with a port-a-loo story: A silent high five and a knowing smile goes a very long way.

Have you ever been commented on during a run?  Good or bad?

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Twinkle Twinkle is old. Just in case you didn't know.

I love having conversations with K.  Up until a few months ago, our conversations consisted mostly of one-sided mommy-babble, but these days they've matured into a full-fledged two-way communication system.  I love K's delightful sense of humour and her witty replies, and cherish the fact that our runs together have become our "chicks only chatting time".

The chicks.

K's latest "thing" is labelling everything that bores her to bits as being "old".  For example:

K: Mommy, let's sing a song!
Mom: Okay, Bub, what do you want to sing?  What abooooooout, uhmmm, Twinkle Twinkle?
K: No, Mom, Twinkle Twinkle is old.
Mom: Okay...  Uhhhhm, what aboooooooout Bana ba sekolo (the Sesotho version of Frere Jacques)?
K (giggling): No, Mom, Bana ba sekolo is old!

And so we'll continue for the largest part of our run, until some blessed song in our repertoire is deemed worthy of being sung.  Got to love it.

                                                   *     *     *

Something that I find "old" these days, a la K, is this whole coughing and sneezing situation going on in our home (and I'm sure that by this time you're finding it very "old" too).  Yes, there was a brief, shining moment during which all four of us were more or less healthy again.  But then Will decided that coughing up a storm each night is much more fun, and J Bear quickly followed suit.  And so did our nanny.  Sigh.

Sick as a (big) dog.  At least he still has his sense of humour :) .

So no more Mr Nice Guy.  From here on out, if you sneeze between these four walls, you will be issued with a safety mask.  And if you cough, you will be nebulized, humidified and Vicks Vaporub'ed.  And, just for good measure, you will be provided with copious amounts of orange juice, honey and echinacea, whether you sneeze or cough or just come for a visit.  So beware.  Mama's on the war path.