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As I try to increase my distance on the weekends, I spend a lot more time on the track talking to myself.  Not so much a dialogue (whew, I’m not losing my mind yet) but a mix between reminding myself why I’m on the track, the number of laps to run and, most important of all, counting my completed laps.  In the last few weeks, I’ve noticed my mind briefly wandering off to deal with other issues hidden away in various corners and causing me to momentarily lose count… until I go back to count the number of times I ran past that track-hazard (random woman standing in the middle of the track oblivious to the fact that there are people running on the track).

Now that I’ve increased the number of laps on the track, it takes more than just the motivation to leave the house but also the persistence to keep running.  I ran my second run of last week on Friday, gave myself a day of rest on Saturday and then ran again yesterday (Sunday).  Aware of my busy work week ahead and not being downtown all this week to keep to my three runs a week, I opted to run today (Monday).  I have the day off today so at least an early afternoon run is easier than an after work run.

I arrived at the track yesterday and there were already several people on the track running laps.  There was one runner (already running when I arrived) that passed me at least four times during my 13 laps.  When I left the track to run home, that person was still running.  My guess is that he ran at least 20 laps if not more.

As for me..?

Let’s start with yesterday.  It was hard to get moving.  By the time I was ready to run, it was already late afternoon/early evening.  However, I reminded myself that my minimum training requirement is three times a week.  Surely I can meet at least that…. When I arrived at the track, I reminded myself that a minimum of 6 laps should be no problem.  I was running approximately 6 laps at the track even before my lunch hour training. When I finished my third lap, I reminded myself that I’ve become capable of completing 4 km at lunch time in 30 minutes — keeping in mind that those runs were filled with uphill inclines and downhill declines.  Taking that calculation back to the track,  4 km translates to about 10 laps… no problem, right?  By the time I reached 9 laps, I thought to myself, 12 laps was possible on Friday so I should be able to do at least 12 laps today and maybe 13.

And so you see, I ran 13 laps around the track.  Notice how I downplayed the run to the track?  I was trying to trick my mind into believing I was only counting the laps around the track.  Combining the 13 laps at the track and the run to and from the track, I ran a total of 7 km in about 51.5 minutes.

Having run yesterday, I probably should have taken things a little lighter on today’s run.  My body was being a bit finicky on the track.  It felt good to be running as the sun was slowly poking through the clouds but I noticed my tummy was starting to struggle with cramps after the 4th lap.  It crossed my mind to stop after that lap but I really wanted to finish at least 6 laps before running home.  As I rounded the corner on the 6th lap, the cramps seemed to have disappeared on its own.  I decided to keep running to see how far I could get before the cramps returned.  By the time the 9th lap was completed, I decided to challenge myself to run 14 laps — only one more than yesterday.  Total distance today was 7.4 km in just under 56 minutes.

While I was on the track these last two days, I did a quick memory search to guesstimate the number of places that I have eaten at in the past year that I haven’t blogged about.  There are quite a few.  In fact, just travels alone, I still have my Bellevue, Victoria and Luxembourg trips.  That doesn’t include the ones that I’ve tried in and around the Greater Vancouver area.  I thought that after I finished blogging about my Australia trip, I would be caught up for a while.  After all, I wasn’t eating out as much as those breakfast, lunch and dinner meals.  I forgot to factor in that I’ve been trying out different places with different friends.

As it is quite late now and tomorrow is a work day, I will leave my Bellevue travels (which the timing would have been after my last year’s birthday eats post) for another time.  I won’t be downtown this week, so perhaps I will share some photos of a small shop called Cafe de France that I went to late last year.

I’ve walked past this little downtown cafe many, many times.  Sometimes I think about stopping by but usually I’m in the midst of running errands and just keep walking.  One day, my colleague and I were thinking of possible lunch places and she mentioned wanting to try out a little cafe on the corner.  They have a variety of sandwiches, baguettes and salads to choose from and spacious seating (for a downtown cafe).  It was soup and salad type of day for me so that’s what I ordered!

soup and salad

soup and salad

I thought I had more photos but could only find this one.  As I’m writing this blog post, this reminds me to go back there again the next time I am downtown.
Cafe de France on Urbanspoon