Sunday, December 6, 2009

The Hike that didn't happen

Workouts for the week: 37 miles total
Monday: 7 miles
Tuesday: 6 miles + core work
Wednesday: spinning
Thursday: 13 miles
Friday: 5 miles
Saturday: 6 miles

Now that the important news has been taken care of, let me issue a warning: Feel free to scroll to END OF RANT, in order to avoid long, lame rant that follows. No feelings will be hurt, I promise!


On Friday evening, my backpack was packed to the brim with everything I would need on a 10 mile hike in the first real snowfall of the season; water, gatorade, trail mix and granola bars, extra socks, gloves, hand and toe warmers and insect repellent (on the off-chance that some of the hardier fellas decided to wander about and explore the winter landscape). My hiking boots were waiting by the door, ready for my first winter hiking expedition ever. I had printed out directions (DH has ordered me a GPS, so if UPS delivers as they say they would, by tomorrow, I will be a paperless traveler...Merry Christmas!) to the commuter parking area in Sloatsburg, where I would meet the rest of the group from the Appalachian Mountain Club and begin the 5-6 hour hike in the Seven Hills area. I was nervous about hiking in snow/sleet and was unsure about the pace of the group. This was a much faster group than I had hiked with before. But I was also excited and looking forward to the the experience.

On Saturday morning, the alarm went off at 6 am; I sleepily turned it off and rolled over. Checking the weather forecast the previous night was a bad idea...I knew that if I left my warm bed, I would be stepping into a chilly 28 degrees outside. I thought of trudging about in that weather all day and driving back in sleet. Beside me, DH coughed violently a few times, then reached out an arm and caught my hand, as if to stop me from getting up. Dutiful wifely feelings rushed through me...I couldn't leave my poor coughing husband home alone on a Saturday (he wasn't really that sick; but everything somehow seems more dramatic at night). I imagined returning, thoroughly exhausted from the hike to a gazillion chores that had to be done, including cooking for the friends we had invited for lunch the next day, meeting some other friends for a late dinner and a 6-mile run Sunday morning. In a vague state of semi-sleep, I recall a moment of mild annoyance at the mental inventory and excuse-making. My body was still aching from the 31 miles I had already run during the week and was begging for a couple more hours of sleep. The last thought that went through my mind before I decisively drifted off to sleep was, "If only I had a hiking buddy (I mean a regular hiking buddy as opposed to the dozen strangers I was scheduled to meet, who wouldn't care whether I joined them or not), getting out of bed would be sooo much easier"...

When I woke up 4 hours later, I hated myself for being so weak-willed, kicked myself a good bit(figuratively of course...I have no intention of causing more damage to this already injury-prone body). DH got a earful for his part in holding me back. After fretting about, I finally placed the blame for the morning's despicable display of laziness on those melancholy small hours (of the night) when both body and spirit could be at their lowest ebb (Alexander McCall Smith in The Lost Art of Gratitude).

Have you felt that way? When the alarm screams, you would give almost anything in the world to hold on to those few precious hours, minutes (or moments, even) of sleep...and then, when you are wide awake, you cannot remember why in the world it was such an endeavor to simply get your butt off the bed and get on with your day.


That was my long-winded and totally unnecessary way of telling you all that instead of a wild winter hiking adventure replete with pictures, I spent a tame Saturday afternoon looking out wistfully at the snowfall, wishing I were out there with those daring souls. The 6-mile run in the morning helped purge me of some of the guilt...and a nice, quiet dinner and stimulating conversation with friends made me more accepting of what a wuss I had been.

Today, in keeping with the spirit of the holidays, there was lots of gorging (and no working out). I am by no stretch of imagination a food blogger and I lack creativity in clicking pretty food pictures, but my cooking has vastly improved, so let me leave you with pics of some of the dishes I cooked up for lunch today.
Chicken curry with coriander and mint

Mutton curry

Palak Panneer


Abby said...

I've definitely been there and I've definitely made the same decision. Don't beat yourself up too badly - it sounds like you've had a really grueling few months. The strength of your will aside, I'm sure your body was craving those extra hours of sleep.

lindsay said...

i feel that way most mornings... for the past week i have set my alarm for a few minutes before 5am so i can get up and do a little workout before work...

hasn't happened. then when i "sleep in" and get up at 5:45-ish i'm like why didn't i just get up 45 min ago? was 45 min really worth it?! arghhh.

some days it has been a few extra hours of sleeping though, but still... why can't i just push my fat butt out of bed?

Coloradan said...

well it happens to me everyday. I hate when my alarm goes off at 5:45 am everyday and try to snooze 5 times before waking up. You deserve that sleep. Your food looks delicious.

Scheri said...

I'm with you! If I don't have someone waiting for me, then it is so easy to go back to sleep. I guarantee that I'm a bigger wuss than you :-) Your curries look very tasty! Glad you got some great food and a short run to make sure your weekend wasn't a loss.

Erica said...

oh heck yes! We all have those days where we sooooooo want to go but something is telling us to stay and sleep. Sometimes its necessary and you just plain NEED it. I bet the husband was more than happy you stayed :) Great job on the mileage!

Mel-2nd Chances said...

TOTALLY have had days like that, more often then I like to admit!! :D

Tricia said...

I AM not a morning person. I'm not ashamed to admit I sleep until 9 most mornings :)

Jill said...

I have days like that everyday! I just can't get up some days for anything. Um, that last picture...looks a little iffy to me :).

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X-Country2 said...

I've put my alarm on the other side of the room before so I'm not even tempted to snooze. The husband touch would have got me too. I'm a sucker for a spoon invite.

The Happy Runner said...

Yes, I've definitely felt that way. But, sometimes you do need to give into rest. The body needs what the body needs.

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