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Monthly Archives: August 2009

Had a rough dream that I was doing a Top Chef challenge and I wasn’t going to make 4 plates in time.  My steaks were broiling on the wrong side, I added too much vanilla to the yogurt and stirred it with a T Bone which made it taste of Worcestshire.  I was going to have to spoon this desert on Saltines and Triscuits, but none of the vessels matched and most of the crackers cracked.  Knowing exactly what this dream meant I got out of bed immediately to hit the trail.

Decided to do a loop through Golden Gate Park.  I’m improvising my training now but keeping it steady and consistent.  Kind of forgot that the Outside Lands music festival was happening in the park until I got there.  The trails were barricaded with chain link and wrapped off in VIP Parking Only caution tape and it kind of threw me off and made the park look ugly, but at least I got my run in.  Its going to be fierce hot in The City today, and I pretty much took my shirt off and ran topless after the first quarter mile.

Legs felt heavy and sodden.  I plodded.  Kept my mind on it and cruised through.  I was targeting a sub 66:06 six miler and at the very end sprinted to the Contour across a soggy lawn and was done in about an hour four.

Thinking of my training, gonna do a long run somewhere of at least 10 miles on Sunday.  I’m leaning towards the Marin Headlands and the Miwok Trail.  Want to work it out because I have a body work session scheduled at 3 that afternoon.  I’m kind of feeling like its about linking the trails now.

  • 1:08:05
  • 6.01 miles
  • 11:19 avg. pace
  • 9:12 best split
  • 433 feet climbed
  • 857 calories burned

Just when I pulled into the USS San Francisco Memorial at the Lands End Trail Head, the dolphins were there.  I got excited and shouted out “Dolphins!” and a guy coming up the Coastal Trail stairs was all, “Yeah, a whole bunch of them are out there, must be some good fish!”  I wanted to go back into my car and get a quarter for the coin operated binoculars, but didn’t.  I just observed them and tried to tweet them, but was having trouble with the API.  It was good enough to watch and also to note that today was an epic run and the dolphins and I were on track, converging on each other in a significant moment.

I was scheduled to do the Palace to Palace.  A run I’ve done before, years ago when I was training and smoking.  Approached this trail a little differently and thought to start at the Lands End Trail Head at the USS SF memorial and go up to the Palace of Legion of Honor first and then circling back once I reached the Palace of Fine Arts.  Before I even started I picked up a bunch of bananas at the corner produce store then stopped at the Starbucks at the gas station on 9th Street and got an egg mcmuffin and a breve latte.  I didn’t want to bonk on an empty stomach and this fuel did come in handy cos I made the entire 10.70 mile run with no troubles.

Had a nice long warm up and observed the park service trash truck coonts making drunken observations all sounding fucked up as a constant state of being and then some construction worker jumped out of his truck with no shirt and met his buddies in their coveralls.  Really enjoying the random scene at the lookout point and it was a good place to begin.

Took the back trails up to the Palace of Legion of Honor and ran through its colonnades surrounding the Rodin in the court.  Around the fountain and down El Camino del Mar and through the tony Mediterranian affluent residences of Sea Cliff.  Cutting through to the back gate of Baker Beach and slogging through sand until I got to the parking lot and started up the switch backs behind Battery Chamberlain.  Skipping the Batteries to Bluff stairs in favor of the shortest line, underneath the Bridge and through the tunnel at the Historic Battery and I’m on the stairs down to Crissy Field and the Palace of Fine Arts is in sight.  Made a layer adjustment and continued on at the end of the promenade stopped to take a piss in the Mens at the showers.  There were sailboats parked on trailers for some upcoming regatta.  Then under the dome of the Palace of Fine Arts and I’m on Lyon getting ready to cross Lombard into the Presidio.  Running through the sculptured garden at the Letterman Digital Arts Center and peeking through the windows at the entrance where the Yoda sculpture is to see if my client Matt was in there working.  Up to Presidio Boulevard and cut over to Lovers’ Lane.  Up the incline and down again to Julius Khan park where there is always a Bouncy House on the Lawn.  Connecting to the Bay Area Ridge Trail past the Spire and then took Washington where I cut down to the 15th Avenue gate so I could past the construction on the old Insane Asylum where Allen is the architect.  Then a straight romp on Lake back to Sea Cliff and El Camino del Mar and taking the Coastal Trail back at Eagle Point to go up the stairs where that guy came from who saw the dolphins with me and back to the Contour.

It took me a long ass time, just over 2 hours to complete this +10 miler and I’m trying to think what I can do to run faster.  I’m even tempted to start doing some flat road running out my front door and hope that the trail running goddesses don’t roast me on a spit over their campfire, but I have to anticipate that in Cologne the course is going to be mostly paved.  I’m also trying to think of how to do some more long runs but they take so long to do: an hour to prepare, an hour to commute, 2 hours + to run and an hour to get ready for work.  Run at 5 am, it looks like is what I’ll have to do, but for now I think I should probably do two five milers a 10+ and a recovery around 3.  That’d make about a 23 mile cycle which is doable and increase of 10% with each new cycle.

I took it rather easy on this run but felt remarkably strong.  I only had little breaks but they were important for self assessment and hydration.  My mind was in it today and I felt very focused.  I had been anticipating this long run for months so I was glad I hit it in top form.  Need to run faster is what I keep coming towards.  I also managed to set my heart rate zones between 135 and 153 bpm which represent 75-85% of my max heart rate (220-40=180).  I found myself in the zone pretty much consistently, unfortunately can’t retrieve stats cos website is down at Garmin.

  • 2:14:02
  • 10.70 miles
  • 12:32 avg pace
  • 1,295 feet climbed
  • 1520 calories burned

And just to compare, here is my blog entry of the first time I ran Palace to Palace in October 2006:

Palace to Palace is in the books!
Palace of the Legion of Honor Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

to the Palace of Fine Arts.Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

After stretching and warming up to some Hawaiian music, I began my run at 8:40 a.m. at the Lands End trailhead in Lincoln Park. I figured it would take me 2 hours to complete this circuit from Palace to Palace in about 2 hours because I estimated the distance at 12 miles and I seem to be running a 10 minute mile pace. I ran past Eagle Point at the start of the trailhead, past the marker for Mile Rock Beach, cut back up some wooden stairs and switched back over a small wooden bridge and up the trail to where it lets out at the parking lot behind the Palace of the Legion of Honor. This is an uphill grade with the links of the public golf course and the sea on my left, the Palace on my right. Up the wooden stairs that warn “no golf shoes” and down a courseway until I hit the stairs that lead to the gated courtyard of the Legion of Honor with the Rodin “Thinker” sculpture. I hit the Thinker pose, and ran back down the main entryway and sprinted around the fountain and back down El Camino del Mar. This little loop took me past my car where I took off my long sleeve outer layer and drank some water cached behind my front tire. I was feeling a little winded from the up-hills and the stairs during this little loop, but running down hill back to my car, I started hitting the zone and my breathing, heart rate, and stride became synchronized.
I continued downhill through the residential district of Sea Cliff feeling like a yuppy roadrunner. I noticed that o’hia lehua are planted in rows down the sidewalk along Scenic Drive. Cut up 25th Avenue then right down Lincoln Boulevard and through the parking lot for Baker Beach, stopping at the water fountain there to re-hydrate. I noticed the sea lion that was playing with the dolphins the other day, probably hoping to talk to them as much as I do. Then hit a new part of the trail which I haven’t run before, past the battery on the beach and up a winding service road to get back on Lincoln Boulevard. I noticed that the trail maintenance that they have been doing recently on the coastal trail includes route markers to let one know the distance to the next significant scenic landmark. Good work nature corps. Then cut off the trail, downhill through the cypress and past the bunkers to come back on Merchant Road which takes me under the Golden Gate Bridge Through the little garden there and now I’m on my downhill descent to Crissy Field with the Palace of Fine Arts visible against the San Francisco skyline, my Palace 2 halfway mark before me.
Crissy Field is nice and flat with alot of other runners and dogwalkers and early morning strollers there. At the end of the beachwalk there is a bathroom where I take a piss and get another drink from the waterfountain. There is even an outside shower there. Then I cut through the park and The Palace of Fine Arts is right across the street.
I run through the collonades and past a class of elderly sketchers drawing the Palace pond and the mallards and domestic swans lazily swimming around in it hoping that these artists brought them some treats, and finally through until I’m underneath the great dome and yell, “Palace!!” because it is also an echo chamber. I run further along the pond, but can’t circumnavigate it because they are doing a remodel on the east side. I’m halfway and feeling strong. Absolutely no pain and am continuing on in the zone. The flat part of Crissy Field is a breeze, but I’m getting cold so I put on my longsleeve top. I go up a steep flight of wooden stairs that are a part of the new trail restructuring that just been reopened. Underneath a brick tunnel that is cool to run through and finally past the jasmine in the Golden Gate Bridge parking lot. I go take another piss in the bathroom there, but there are no waterfountains, but there is a Bridge cafe that serves water and hotdogs at, I’m sure, exorbitant tourist prices.
Under the bridge again then I’m uphill Merchant Road and just as I am running through the bunkers, my problems start nagging at me. Its distracting and it takes some mental effort to suppress the anxiety and regain my concentration. Thinking about how the dolphins may be at the beach kind of helps to put these fears aside until I can deal with them. Anyway, that mental nagging affected me because I felt like I wanted to puke when I got to the top of the ascent and coming down started to get a stitch in my side.
I took the downhill on the service road really easy until my guts started to feel normal again. Ran on top of the bunkers at the beach through a social trail that cuts through the ice plant and stopped and had another drink in the Baker Beach parking lot.
Familiar territory again and now its all uphill, but its only a slight grade up Lincoln to 25th where it intersects El Camino del Mar, and I realize I only have 6 blocks to go. I pick up my pace a little and get to my car. Woohoo!!! Palace to Palace is in the books!!! I’m back at 10:45, just what I estimated.

I cool down by wrapping myself in a lava-lava and go to Eagle Point to look for dolphins. I do the dolphin call, but only a grey and brown spotted pinniped surfaces to see who’s yelling. Come back and do the nice local thing of taking a group picture of tourists from Nashville and Ireland with the Bridge in the background. It was so misty one could hardly see it on the digital camera’s screen.

Comments:
I’m kind of confused now what to do. This is the longest run that I’ve been on (2 hours) and I felt just as good if not better as I did on my shorter base runs (1 hour, 1.5, and 1.75). I’m gonna have to adjust my program and figure out what I should do. This takes too much time in the morning to make it a regular base. On the way back at the beach I figured I should do maybe 2 shorter runs and a long one at this distance. The next long run will be from Lands End to Fort Funston which is about the same distance 12 miles. Problem is, I’m running out of trails in my city.
Water wasn’t an issue because I knew where the fountains were. And also pissing wasn’t because when I was running where people go there were always going to be a public restroom coming up. The Fort Funston Route won’t have any of these, so, hell I guess I better drink alot the night before and the morning before I go.
My gear was perfect, totally covered and no breakout of hives from cold moisture.

Problems:
Starting is a struggle, but it is good to get those harsh uphills out of the way and then its a long downhill cruise where I get into the zone.
Cold toes came and went, I kind of psyched them away, but I do need a better fitting pair of shoes.
Anxiety sucks! It makes me sick! Running helps to alleviate this but I do need to take care of my shit. Better Life=Better Runs.
That first cigarette I had when I was driving home tasted like shit. I better consider quitting, yet here I am, blogging away chain smoking like a volcano.

Positives:
I did exactly what I intended to do in the time I meant to do it.
Getting encouragement from online friends and talking about my intention with the gang at baytrailrunners.com helped to make it a reality. Positive support=positive results.
I just fucking ran a half-marathon for breakfast!
Scenic natural beauty and neo-classical architecture and sculpture makes me feel like I am an individual of mythic proportions.

Tomorrow, avoid running!

Posted by polynesian_metal on Tuesday, October 24, 2006 – 1:35 PM

It is true that I never feel worse after a run than I do before I start one and today is an example of that although I can’t say I’m feeling super.  Still the vestiges of a hangover–watching Miss Universe with the LGID and his friend ended up a South of Market bar hop closing down Chaps II with Jagermeister shots and me drunk tweeting and posting twitpics of the bartender in a jockstrap.

So I swear I got in my car and actually turned around and started driving home again, then by the time I was headed home, I turned back and drove to the Presidio.  When I got there I warmed up and started down the trail, jogged a few feet, stopped turned back and quit.  I realized I had to draw upon some inner fortitude and the commitment I made to myself to do this today in spite of my activity last night.  Training in real world conditions, and sometimes just watching an innocent beauty pageant can end up being a doozy.

I was able to convince myself and do this work today I’ll call Coastal Stairs and continue on.  Starting at the Presidio Golf Club running along the Bay Area Ridge Trail down the stairs at Immigration Point and then the stairs on the Batteries to Bluff.  I was clipping along and did really well on the uphill stairs.  I surprised myself.  Physically I was capable, but mentally I was so over it.  I’ve been in split minds and bodies lately and I have to figure out a way to get past this.  Just keep training is all I can really do.  I’ve had days like this before so I’m not dealing with anything new.

  • 3.84 miles
  • 48:55 (47:01)
  • 12:45 avg. pace
  • 604 feet climbed
  • 558 calories burned
  • 139/162 avg./max bpm

On the road to Köln, all training is significant.  I find myself a well accomplished recreational runner on the verge of gaining competitive status.  I don’t know if its likely that at my age I’ll ever achieve level elite,  but I’m just going to keep working it and we’ll see where I am next year in Gay Games VIII.

I’m really focused on this, almost to the exclusion of all else, but I do know that I have to take care of myself if I want to make it to Germany.  I partied last night so it was easy to stay in bed and recover, but eventually I made it out and was at the Bunny Trail and starting up the switchbacks on the bluffs above Montara Beach at 2 pm.  Ran it strong and steady, all the way to the top and came down cruise.

Was really trying to focus on deep breathing and was looking for power in my stride, which I found was available to me.  Didn’t want to go all out, but just do a good and steady run.  I noticed how strong I felt compared to when I was running this trail up Old San Pedro Mountain in the beginning of my regime back in the end of May.  I have to say the trail looked a little mangy with garishly pruned pine, the dessicated remains of poisoned pampas and clods of horse turd.  But in essence, I’ve completed the taper down from my previous training for Salt Point and now begins a new regime: totally focused on  the road to Köln and getting there training for 2 endurance distances of 10 kilometers and the half marathon at 21 kilometers.

I still haven’t settled on the distance I’ll do for the North Face Endurance Challenge Championship on 5 December 2009 nor do I know if I will sign up with the Endurables for distance training.  In fact, I really have to figure out where I’m going with my training.  I think I will just keep doing the increase and the alternating between hills and flats, but I’m really running out of nearby terrain and excursions to long enough trails are going to eat into the time it takes me in the morning to prep for work.  I really also have to consider better nutrition.  Like I’ve said I’ve let it slide a bit and I do need to take better care of myself and things around the flat.

  • 4.54 miles
  • 55:10 (51:07)
  • 12:09 avg pace
  • 898 feet climbed
  • 728 calories burned
  • 136/160 avg/max bpm

Tomorrow I’m planning to do Coastal Stairs in the Presidio and then on Wednesday I’m gonna hit Palace to Palace epically.

Woke up eager to do a run on most challenging San Bruno Mountain, but hit snooze and had an extra cup of coffee because lately I’ve been feeling like my maternal grandfather and am embracing the feeling of not being rushed, being old and doing things in my own time.  Saying on multiple occasions that things are disorganized around the flat are  understatements and it seems as if I have more stuff to do than I have the time to do them in and so many thing on that list of “to do,” I can’t possibly remember to do them all by the time they should be done–especially when they aren’t on a manifest.  Composing that list would be an interminable and embarassing practice, so I’ll just keep it in my head.

I had an appointment scheduled with my body worker, Scott, at 3 and was in need of a shave and a fade with my barber, Emilio.  I could cut Scott a check, but didn’t have enough cash for Emilio so I thought to save time I’d go to Target and get some money back with my purchase instead of dealing with Chase.  I didn’t get to the trailhead until about 11:30 am and knew that if I could make it to the barbershop by 2 then I’d be all good for the massage.  What do I do?  Race.  Instead of driving up to the summit to park underneath the radio towers, I parked at the trailhead and decided to hit the trail from below as to complete the run all downhill on Summit Loop.

I got out of the Contour and did some cursory yoga poses.  A little surprised by my strength and totally familiar with my lack of balance.  I pumped it up and raved to dark wave feeding into my ears from my headphones thinking how I’d work my featured dance steps in dark gothic clubs in medieval basements in Germany.   Brilliant to be running the Ridge Trail at high noon with no sunscreen and long tights.  As it turned out I even left my Nike Vapors on the passenger seat, but at least I had my Giants’ visor to shield my eyes.  I started running East on the Eucalyptus Trail, this portion of which was virgin to me.  Slight up hill and then its all up single track on the Dairy Ravine Trail where I took off an outer layer and stripped down to just tank and tights.  Connecting to the lush part of the Ridge Trail underneath the Summit Vista and then an Out and Back to the first Mile Marker on the dessicated and exposed Ridge Trail jeep track.

I was surprised that I was doing a nice clip on the uphills in the first portion of today’s trail.  I felt physically strong yet mentally shattered: my body fully capable yet my psyche scattered and fragmented.  I realize that I manifest as a corporeal reflection in 3 dimensions–an alchemical analog of influence and intention, shaped by environment and climate yet motivated by free will, desire and need.  I only have one thing to do really, in the moment it is all I need do.  Complete this trail.  Running is my escape from things I have less control over and it shows me that despite how overwhelming my responsibilities and obligations are, at least I can do one thing.  Be present.

Hit the mile marker on the Ridge Trail and tracked back, noticing grasshoppers and for whom they might be feed.  A glance to my left became a full stop gaze and then flowed into a suspicious rapport with a murder of crows.  They circled in the thermals over the valley on the Daly City side and scouted over my head.  Eventually they settled on the ridge just paces east of me.  I joined the flock: the crow with the soul and delusions of a hawk who reluctantly will indulge in carrion but has an almost comic fondness for hunting down grasshoppers and dragonflies.  The crows hopped along keeping an eye on my position then took flight to the San Bruno side, apparently alarmed and repulsed by my appetite.

Completing the mile back on the ridge, I got to the trail post for Summit Vista at 1,300 feet above sea.  The trail marker had come loose off of one screw and trying to set it aright ended up prying it off.  I stowed the plaque in my CamelBak and continued back through the lush parts of Ridge below the summit.  Crossed the road to the Summit Loop trail and it is all down hill single track, but I developed a stitch in my abs and had to minimize the jarring pain.  Also that cut in my foot was causing me trouble but not serious enough to make me want to quit, just  enough to make me want to absorb.  Holding back I was falling underneath my target heart rate, which really I’ve set a bit high.  Soon I’m at the bottom of the Loop and the Magic Tree looked a little cut up to me.

A slight ascent back up to where I parked and really, I was gassed.  Turned off my GPS App, RunKeeper to find that it totally failed to track this epic trail run and only showed me crossing the street.

  • 6 miles
  • 1:32:42
  • 15 minute pace
  • 144 avg bpm
  • 175 max bpm

After cutting Hunter’s hair the previous night at the Larkspur Marriot, my run in the Marin Headlands was rather erratic.  I got up after Hunter left to go on set, leaving me with the card keys.  I took a shower, took a shit and took a nice bath in our ground floor room.  I toyed around with the idea of working out in the corporate gym, but checked it out and realized it was just a 12’x12′  room with some dumb weights, an elliptical, a treadmill and a Stairmaster. A cute bearded chubby guy worked out on one of the cardios, but I blew the proximal for a buffet breakfast on the Apple per diem: a waffle with syrup and cold butter, eggs, too much bacon and sausage, rather bitter hotel coffee and tucked a tomato juice in my backpack to go.  Why work out in a cramped beige room with CNN on a monitor when I could be eating mountains for breakfast and washing it down with an early morning cold cup of Sun?

Gave a rather generous tip to my buffet server and signed the check to the room.  Got into the Contour and headed back  to the Headlands.  I realized by the time I hit the trailhead, running what I did the previous night in my time allotment was nigh impossible, so again improvising, came up with a doable trail.  Ran Bobcat to Miwok then cut over to Rodeo and picked up a street. Crossing over to the stables found a Fisherman’s Trail to Black Sand Beach, which ended up being the Pacific Coast Trail and just ran the bunkers down to the Nike Missile silos and found a nice cutaway through Point Bonita but chose to come on down to Rodeo Beach and hit the trailhead where I started.

In all it was probably about a 3+ mile run, but my gps unit was fucking up due to my own user error.  Like me, my phone was mostly erratic, and lagged to get started as did I.  Half my run didn’t get tracked on my gps but it doesn’t really matter if it did not do.  Hard to put together a back to back, evening to morning run, but my training is getting kind of strange and frenetic.  I’ll need to pull it back and get it together, but I’m still trying to complete these hills.  Scheduled tomorrow: San Bruno Mountain, although I sustained a cut to the bottom of my left foot between the barbecue and the hot tub last night at the Highlands Resort.

I got off early on Thursday night and because I was going to Larkspur that evening to meet my old roommate, Hunter, I thought to squeeze in a run in the Marin Headlands where I ran last year’s North Face Endurance Challenge Championship. I got home around 6 and realized that it was going to turn to dusk at some point in my run.  I showered, geared up and packed a canister of pepper spray as a cougar deterrent.  I got caught in Golden Gate Bridge rush hour traffic, driving down Lombard and up Doyle Drive blinded by the low lying sun, the automobiles before me burned out silhouettes.

I got to the trail head, realizing I was falling behind schedule.  I told Hunter that I’d be leaving the City at 8 but really didn’t start until 7:45.  I diddled around with the pepper spray canister trying to find someplace on my hydration unit I could stow it with easy access and wouldn’t have it jangling against me in an uncomfortable way.  I realized I didn’t think to bring any lights.  It was absolutely majestic on Bobcat Trail as I snaked up the switchback turning to look behind me to watch the sunset in the Pacific, blazing the sky and making the golden headland mountains look burnt.  I slogged a bit, walked when I had to but felt my pace was adequate.  I was at Alta Ridge Trail before I realized it and by then the sun was down, the trail just dimly lit.  I stopped to take pictures of Sausalito Bay and the sunset behind me: an orange blaze against the deepest vibrant blue framed starkly by mountains that had turned black.  I was struck  how such complementary colors could exist together without merging into a murky neutrality.

By then Hunter had texted where I was and I messaged back that I was on the trail and would be at the Larkspur Marriot in about 40.  Ridge running through a Eucalyptus grove, the crepuscular trail grew dark brown and moist. Pooled water in ruts revealed themselves as black silver reflections.  Emerging at the top of the Rodeo Valley Trail, the night had grown dark.  I ran blind letting my feet do the seeing.  For the most part I could only differentiate the trail as a smooth shiny strip against the fuzzy silhouette of scrub, peppered with rubble.  I flew downhill averaging 7:31 splits, blind and in terror, not only from wiping out epically but also from maybe being attacked by a puma.  I was thrilled with the anticipation of either and in the tension that exists between surged with emotional rushes signifying love and danger.  I had to remember the pace I was setting because it felt like a personal best.  To make it to the podium in the Gay Games VIII I’ll have to replicate this tempo.  By the time I was back on Bobcat again I sprinted to the trail head in bursts. The evening had embraced full darkness and I was hallucinating figures.

I thought I’d live my life like Madonna, yesterday as I had a whole day to play and the activities planned were so bourgeoise I felt like a rock star and wanted to live the transitory existence of someone famous.  As it turned out, Madonna really loved living a day in my shoes, and I appreciated what it must be like to be in hers.  We both felt satisfied with the work we did on ourselves to stay ready for the stage and our contribution to the community in the volunteer work that we did, but by the end of the day, Madonna wishes she had it as good as me.

I started the morning with an Organic Mexican coffee, drip brewed at home.  I realized my uniform wasn’t presentable, so I just had enough time to wash and iron it while I showered and had another Mexican.  Madonna usually has her assistant Liz go down to Starbears for a latte, but I had given her the day off and the kids were at camp so I had a nice, but hectic rather uncharacteristic  morning to myself.  Drove myself down to park in Fort Mason listening to my iPhone broadcast over the Contour radio.  Arranged to see my friend from Hollywood who is art directing an Apple spot in Larkspur as I walked to my gig.

Where Madonna does charity work and outreach to end the AIDS pandemic in Malawi, I work at the Visitors’ Center at Fisherman’s Wharf Googling stuff and helping tourists find things.  What we both do are important activities.  I think I have it a little better because I provide just a little bit of information and solve a little problem with every guest I encounter.  Madonna is trying to end AIDS in Africa so I doubt she gets that little satisfied sense of completion that I do when I serve a visitor.

After my gig at the National Park, I had just enough time to go back to my flat, change out of my uniform and go get a massage with my body worker, Scott.  I showed up at his clinic in Glen Park, but he had forgotten his keys when he left home and no other clinicians where available to let us in, so we drove back to his place to do the massage, which I prefer.  Scott and I both love SCI FI, so I love browsing his titles when he’s doing intake.  We talked about my goals, how sore I am on my Hot and Sticky Tour and the tragedy of a stage hand being killed when the set collapsed, but after his expert attention I felt rejuvenated and relaxed with my deep soreness worked out or at least put on alert and told to get out in places where I didn’t even know I experienced pain.

After the massage I went to the taco truck and got two carne asada tacos and a plate of rice and beans. I’m Madonna and I used to eat out of a garbage can in New York City so being able to afford a hot meal at my advanced age is proof that I have made it.

Whereas Madonna does Pilates and Ashtanga, I do Hatha Naked Yoga for Men.  Madonna has no issues about being nude, I posed fully naked on the side of the road in a wig and stilletos for my Sex book, but I’m more concerned about the privacy of my fellow yogis so they can do their naked yoga practice without being shot at by paparazzi on top of the roof of Ritmo Latino and ending up as naked extras in the background shot of me in Half Moon, naked but censored, in Us Weekly.  Unfortunately, I have to say the class was disjointed, with the instructor stopping the whole class in frustration because some people were doing Down Dog with their toes turned under instead of flat on the floor.  I had to exercise patience at this point and then rebelliously did Low Cobra (to perfection) whenever he called out Down Dog.  The instructor has just been recently accredited and used to assist and sometimes sub but now he has his own class on my most convenient day of the week.  Like Madonna’s former BGFF Courtney Love used to say about Dave Grohl: “When the drummer starts singing lead…”  All three of us are total cunts.

After the workout, I was tempted to go to Starbears and get my own latte, but was afraid of having my incognito penetrated by my gay fans in the  Castro.  I also knew that I might regret the late night caffeine if I stayed up all night.  When I jumped into the Contour after stowing my yoga mat in the trunk, I automatically drove myself in the direction home, like a divining rod will point to water, my car was pointing to a bottle of wine and Top Chef.  I finished an open bottle of Portugese Verdelho and got into a new bottle of a Russian River Valley Chardonnay.  Hubert Keller won the episode of that cooking show and I fell asleep feeling satisfied.

I realized this morning that it takes me a little time to warm up.  I lagged in the morning and wanted to do a 7 miler but by the time I got to the Presidio Bowling Center realized that I was gonna run short of time so I truncated the loop.  I had to give a haircut to fulfill my trade obligation with my body worker, Scott Henady at noon, and dicked around quite a bit in the morning but still had time enoug to squeeze out a shorter hill session before I had to go to the shop.

Nice and sunny today. Presidio and Crissy Field were rife with Sunday recreators having a good time in San Francisco like you know you should on a Summer day like today.  Parked in the lot at the bowling alley and watched the squashed fog stream into the Bay underneath the bridge and disintegrate right there.  Strapped up all my units and then thought, “fuck the shirt.”  It was nice and hot so I did my run in my tri-athlete fetish harness: heart rate strap, hydration unit and headphones insulating me in sound waves of Black Metal being pumped directly into my ears.   Pershing Square and Ecology Trail.  Comes the bitch of a calf strain so up the Ecology Trail decided not to push, but just lay back and enjoy this recreational run.  Jogging, I daresay!  Realized my heart rate was going to stay below the 150 target and was steady between 135 and 145 bpm, so I was running equivalently slow, but didn’t want to bust a chronic injury.  Spire, Bay Area Ridge Trail, which one day I will completely run. San Juan Bautista Trail, down the stairs to Batteries and Bluffs where I had to stop and take pictures of Battery Crosby because I was reminded of how we used to party there in High School. Passing packs of group runners on the steps down and up from Marshall Beach.  Bridge and down to Crissy Field where I had to put on my little titty show, harnessed, strapped and pierced making good time and showing off my sport.

Got home with just enough time to rinse and put on my relaxed uniform, but Scott called and told me he was running a bit late, so I did get a chance to relax.

After his cut, retrieved my car and went and cashed my paycheck.  Stopped at Ross and got an FM transmitter for my iPhone which is so needed.  Kind of getting tired of my cassettes.  Rolled over to the Dollar Store to get some rocks for my fish and Kool-Aid pitchers, some shit from Walgreen’s and poked over to Thrift Town to see if they had something to brew my Kombucha in.  Decided to go to my favorite place in J-Town for a late lunch, but when I got there there was a street fair and they were discounting the street food because it was towards the end of the event.  Went to Goodwill and got a Michael Jackson videotape, Moon Walker, picked up some sand from the bonsai shop and got a fishnet from Aqua Forest Aquarium.  Their motto is “In Sync With Nature.”  I had long decided to just go to Naked Yoga For Men after I was done running errands since my yoga mat is always stowed in the trunk, but it was only just about 5 and having an hour to use decide to go to the Castro and get a beer at the Edge.

Nice day like today and the Castro is packed.  Well every neighborhood, really.  Cruised and found parking right in front of StarBears. I had a drink token for a domestic beer to redeem at the Edge so I traded it for a Bud.  Talked to a guy who just got layed off and had to move out of his studio into a roomie situation in West Portal and was thankful that I have a good job.  Dude is Italian and shared his Brozolli recipe with me: stuffed steak with cheese and salami in a red sauce? Hell fucken yeah.  His mate had a shirt that said, “Irish Yoga” on it and the graphic was of an Irish guy passed out drunk on various set furniture.  Finished my beer and went and got the coffee from the Castro Cheesery and stopped into a clearance outlet in the old All American Boy storefront to search for pieces of my uniform, but the blazer fit strangely in the armpits and the fabric looked a bit cheap.

Rolled on down 19th Street and passed Dolores Beach which was packed.  Got a parking just an alley away from the yoga studio and had to tweet how good the parking had been all day.

Sunday night yoga class is still being subbed by Michael, but I was hoping that Darren was going to be back so I can get his perspective on what it was like to attend the OutGames.  I’ll have to wait until next week.  I was hoping to work out some of the bitch of a calf strain that I am re-experiencing, but tonight’s practice focused on hip openers.  I realized that after yoga, I would have worked out for 3 hours today.  Not bad.  Like I said, I’m so focused on competing in the Gay Games, I’m gonna do what it takes.  After class I gave a fellow yogi a  ride down to Guerrero and 14th because I wanted to get cheap gas at that ARCO, but its up to $2.99 a gallon now.

Stats:

  • 1:12:10 time
  • 5.42 miles
  • 13:19 pace (biased)
  • 750 feet climbed
  • 743 calories burned

I suppose it was too beautiful of a morning to waste.  I found myself awake at 4, the intensity of the Gibbous Moon stirring my werewolf, wanting to run through the forest, and chase down the Moon.  I discovered last night that scholarships are being awarded to the 2010 Gay Games in Cologne, so I reviewed the application on my phone.  I also searched for my event, which I couldn’t find listed but I do know its there, somewhere.  After about 20 minutes of this I realized I wasn’t going back to sleep and since today’s run was a short one, got in the shower did the coffee and preparatory tweeting to let myself know, more than anyone else, that I was ready to hit the trail.

When I start up my car and turn the corner its dark with a crepuscular twilite just coming on.  Old Chinese people were across the street from the church doing warm up calisthenics and lined up in front of the church doors getting ready to procure donations from the food bank.  Hit E on the gas gauge a block away down Howard at 8th and pulled into the Chevron across the street from AsiaSF but was not ready to pay $3.13 a gallon. Fortunately my Contour was good enough to get to the ARCO on Fell and Divisadero where I used my cash and some change to get $7.65 worth of unleaded at $2.79 a gallon.  Drove out to the Presidio Golf Course and took some pictures of the Spire in the predawn light but was drawn to the overlook at Inspiration Point, seeing the World in her gauzy night clothes wiping the sleep from her eyes.  A majestic Dawn Mother getting ready to wake.

Out of my car to warm up, fledgeling hawks keening out their territory while proletariat crows crawed back their claims of ownership.  Swarmed a bit by mosquitoes and brushing them away realized how they represented a feast  for early morning avian insectivores.  Was that an owl cruising through the Eucalyptus? At this distance I couldn’t tell. Put on the headphones and began my run from Inspiration Point to Immigrant Point, turning my back to the rising sun and sprinting towards the Spire.

Had to reign in as I started to hyperventilate a bit from pushing to fast so soon.  Found my tempo on the Ridge Trail, which was eerie; tall Eucalyptus and Monterey Pine Women, sisters and cousins, cowering to a pressure that wasn’t there.  Backs bent to a non-existent wind, hunched at the shoulders against the atmospheric lash wielded by the sea, who, at this moment was in repose.  Down Nauman and found part of the trail above the Cemetery is fenced off with chain link  where the Trust is eradicating some trees.

Down Amatury Loop and as I predicted, Red Coyote was crossing the road.  “I saw you before buddy! I know your range and I know where you hunt.  I could tell you where I just saw a vole.”  Continuing up the Ridge Trail being mindful to keep my heart rate at +150 bpm but did see it drop to 146 on occasion. Up the hill, down the hill. Boom! Tread, tread.

Back to the overlook at Inspiration Point and that lady, the Sun, was rising through the mist like a Mother Ship,  draping her rays in the most elegantly self conscious arrangement.  Another runner ran to the view we were sharing and commented, “Why would you want to live anywhere else?” and I replied, “Why would you not want to wake up at 4 in the morning to go on a run on a day like this?”  Why wouldn’t one?

Stats:

  • 30:57 minutes (27:27 actual)
  • 2.71 miles
  • 11:24 pace
  • 249 ft. climb
  • 435 calories burned
  • 150 bpm avg.
  • 174 bpm max