A Bit Behind The Eight Ball - January 2020

I can't say that I really loved January 2020 by any stretch of the imagination. It was a month where I used the word patience or change quite a bit, especially since I wasn't able to run as much as I wanted and breaking things that I really didn't want to break.

My favorite photo from January was:


Around the 12th, I broke my new blog by getting too cute with the URL and then messing it up. This meant that I had to go with the new URL which I hated after thinking about using it for the next few years or moving back to One Foot In Reality (OFIR). Since you are reading this, you can tell which path I took - I came back to One Foot In Reality. I figured I was already paying for the domain and all that other stuff, I might as well use it.

It took a little time to get the blog back to normal, whatever that is and I have been cleaning out the junk and garbage on this site for most of the month. I think I am finally getting OFIR back to the way I want it and will only be doing minor tweaking from here on out.

Well...at least that is the plan unless I get back to being Harold being Harold, which is always a possibility around heah.

Especially since I do see myself growing in different directions and no longer write primarily about or am Just A Runnah, something that I now see as a very good thing. I will always be a runner, but I am also more than that.


Yes, I broke my iPhone 7 while moving snow around mid-month, which meant that I had to go out and get a new Google Pixel 3a. I wasn't ready for that change when it happened but now that I look back on it, the Pixel is a better match for me, especially since I was moving back to Google anyway. Now I just have to get over three years of muscle memory and thinking of how the iPhone does things versus how the Pixel does it.

There are differences between IOS and Android, but it is (for me at least) more where things are hidden than what the phones can do. I do like the camera on the Pixel 3a better, but I wish the phone itself was a little smaller. Oh well, small whine.

Now for my big whine


I buggered up my hamstring after a great run on the 7th, by the 9th I wasn't able to run without the hamstring telling me its life story and how stoopid I am.

Yeah, when young professional athletes can't compete on a bad hamstring, what chance does a no account runner in his 60s, who's delusions of grandeur often overtake the reality of what is going on - have of getting over that kind of injury quickly.

None at all.

When you look at my official running log, there are an awful lot of red days where, I couldn't run before of the hamstring and other days that I probably should not have even tried, but did anyway. It didn't help on the 19th that I slipped a couple of times on ice while doing snow blowing and didn't help the healing process a whole lot.

During my physical, I did ask for and got a referral to the physical therapist. However, the co-pay for each visit was more than I thought the service would be worth, especially since none of the PTs in that office are runners and through past experience, I have found when I have gone to one who is not, I get treated based more on my age stereotype than an aging runner who is not going to stop running. I tend to believe there is a difference and it does affect how a PT attempts to rehabilitate my injuries.

So I opted for out of the pocket payments to my massage therapist for a series of deep tissue massage. My first visit was last Friday and he cleaned out a lot of gunk in legs that needed to be gone. I could definitely feel the difference. However, the hamstring still has a ways to go before it is fully healed. It doesn't hurt to run on it, but it does have some discomfort - that doesn't go above my 3 on 10 scales, but it is still enough to know that it ain't ready for prime time yet.

However, it is getting closer.

I am a bit bummed though, this is the worst start to a year since 2011 and getting under 50 miles for January, well it just ain't a good way to start my running in 2020. Even so, I have made progress and am back to doing 50 miles a week of cardio, so hopefully, that will help when I do start actually running again. If nothing else it does help to keep the weight more reasonable.

I do hope that I have rounded the corner and that the worst of the injury is behind me. We will see.

However, I did manage to keep working out and didn't go in the corner and sulk like I usually do when I can't run. I really believe that changing my outlook a lot had something to do with all that and the tagline that I use on this blog

Yes, you are what you do, so do what you can.

Looking at that every day did make a difference in my outlook on not being able to run. I used the elliptical, walked more, started doing my hamstring exercises, lifted a few weights and kept up a good attitude. Which is a lot better than the previous times my balky hamstrings have shut me down and I get all squirrely about not being able to run.


I did read a little more and the genres were more than just running and heroic fantasy.

Lifespan - Had a lot of ideas and science that really made me stop and think about the future and what it could be like if the author's ideas and view of what it should look like. However, as I reflect back on the book, I have a feeling that it will be like most other things in life. Those who have the money to afford the treatments will get the treatments and live longer lives than those who do not. I do not see a Star Trek future in our world anytime soon, I foresee something closer to Blade Runner. A rather dark and murky time for most and for those with money a better life. A bit pessimistic, but looking at where we have been and where we are, it doesn't bode well for where we are going.

Running With the Kenyans - This is the second time I read the book and I really enjoyed it the first time I read it. Unfortunately, the second time around it was more of a slog instead of a fast-paced read. I am in a different place with my running at this point in my life and couldn't put myself in Finn's shoes this time, so the excitement of being in Iten and running with Kenyan runners to improve myself didn't resonate with me.

As the Crow Flies - Was a pretty typical heroic fantasy with a bunch of twists and turns that made the story quite good. I got it as a free eBook on Amazon and will be getting the second book in the series at some point this year.

Draft No 4 - It was a tough read at times, but a good story about how the author worked as a writer and some of the hints, ideas, and thoughts in the book was quite good. They are hopefully things that I can use to become a little better at my writing than I was before. Well, at least that is the hope.

Essentialism - Actually, I am doing a lot of the stuff in the book, before I read it and it helped me re-confirm the things that I am doing. Although this book is more geared to those who are still in the workforce, I was able to adapt some of it to my retired life.

The Running Injury Recovery Program - I used the methods in this book when I was going through my last big bout of hamstring problems a few years ago. I "found" it again, when I was updating my Kindle library and decided to re-read it to see if it still was pertinent to my recovery. The information in this book helped me decide to not use the local physical therapists and go in a different direction based on my previous experiences and the information I was reading - they were very similar. After re-reading it, I remembered some of the problems that my body and personality had with this program and I decided to use a different method to help with my hamstring recovery process.

The Daily Stoic - I am reading an entry that corresponds to the date each day. One thought for each day and then I reflect on them. In this daily format, I have time to digest and not rush through the book. I don't believe that I am a Stoic by any stretch of the imagination, but at the same time some of the philosophy that it espouses does hit home and is helping me think about how I can improve myself and not be in as much a hurry to worry.

The reality is that

January 2020 was not the month that I planned on - to say the least!

My left hamstring decided that it was time to shut things down for a while. Actually, there was not any choice in the matter and as much as I attempted to run, it quite emphatically told me that it was not going to cooperate.

While I had begun moving primarily to Google's products, I had not intended getting rid of my iPhone 7 for another year or so. However, when I had to get a new phone, I quickly researched the different options and decided on the Google Pixel 3a as my best option and something that would complement my 2015 Google Pixel 2 Chromebook nicely. They are working well together and now that I am a few weeks into the transition, things are getting better.

Where I am noticing the biggest difference in my life is probably what I read and also write about in my blog. These changes are moving me out of my comfort zone in a few places and at the same time allowing me to improve who I am as a person.

Sometimes we have to look at setbacks as opportunities and in the past not being able to run, messing up my blog, breaking my phone along with a few other things that happened in January would have been major distractions in the past, I didn't allow them to be more than minor inconveniences. In spite of the changes that happened, I kept moving forward and that is the important thing.

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.