Saturday, February 03, 2007

Long Run: The Return!

Today was my first long run since the marathon!

It was chilly this morning—high 30s/low 40s. But the sun was out, and that was nice, after so many gray days. My lungs didn't give me any trouble, although I was having issues with my knee for no reason I could figure out. Maybe I slept weird on Thursday. I had to use my trigger point ball Friday night, and wear my cho-pat today. But the knee feels fine tonight, as I figured it would, since I hadn’t done anything to it.

I chose a simple route up Memorial to Chimney Rock and back via Woodway, for a total of about eleven miles. It felt good to find my groove and let my mind drift. I noticed the little roadside garden at Memorial and Chimney Rock is doing well. It’s full of nice-looking cabbages, and there was some early lettuce, too. I wish I knew who is crazy enough to plant vegetables along the sidewalk, next to a busy street— they must be full of exhaust toxins. But they’re fun to look at. My father has always had a garden, so I have good associations with them and find them comforting.

There were a lot of robins out today—big fat ones that looked like they could hardly fly, they were so pudgy. They were like Weebles with wings. And there was a sweetheart of a dog tied up outside Starbucks. He was wagging his tail at everyone who went past, wanting to be friends.

Since it was such an uneventful run, I let my mind wander and got to thinking about one of my little oddities, which is that I always carry a bandana on my runs, tucked into my water bottle strap, a pocket, or my waistband. In the seven years I’ve been running long, the bandana has proven to be one of the most useful things I can take on the road, kind of like Douglas Adams’ towel.

So without further ado, here are some excellent reasons to take a bandana on a long run:

• You can tie it around your head to keep the sweat out of your eyes, or to help keep your ears warm if the weather is cool and you forgot to wear a hat.
• You can wet it to clean an abrasion.
• You can tie up a bleeding cut or road rash.
• You can stabilize a turned ankle.
• You can cover your nose and mouth with it in cold weather, or if there’s dust.
• If you find wild greens for the bunny, you can make a pouch to carry them in.
• You can improvise a cho-pat strap with the bandana and a smooth rock, should you have unexpected knee troubles far from home.
• You can blow your nose in it.
• And you can wipe the sweat off yourself off with it after your run, if you still want to after all that.

I’m sure as time goes on, I’ll come up with even more uses for the humble bandana. It’s not for nothing that my husband of nearly twelve years calls me MacGyver. I’d love to hear what other runners and cyclists consider their most useful must-have!

Today’s Workout
Eleven mile run


From Here to There said...

I'm so glad you had a good run!

Love the bandana idea. I carry too much 'stuff' on my run, however one thing I always run with is bus fare. No idea why, since I carry my cell and if things got really bad out there I'd call someone to get me! But I absolutely must bring bus fare! Not bus tickets, what if I lose my cell phone and need to make a call? Or if I have a deep desire for hot chocolate?

That's all I gots! ;O)

LauraHinNJ said...

You know what they say about necessity...

Glad to hear the robins in your part of the world are eating well.


CactusFreek said...

Note to self: keep bandana in glovebox in case the deep desire to run should kick in lol.

I hated MacGyver, really i did! Now when that actor is in something else, i irritate people by making corny jokes about getting himself out of sticky situations with the miraculously appearing hair clip!

However, i appreciate the similarity between him and you with cleverness :o)

Spider63 said...

I guess a bandana is a lot like a do-rag? You can wrap it around your shaved head? Use it for wrist injuries? Wrapping stuff you find on the trail? Wiping off dirt? Can hold a field-splint in case of an emergency broken bone? Can be used to start a camp fire or wave at rescuers passing by.

TX Runner Girl said...

Very smart to carry that bandana. BTW, I was just noticing all the robins in our yard lately...there seem to be a ton of them!