As I tried to get to sleep at 11:15 pm, tossing and not being successful at getting into a comfortable position, thoughts began spewing from my mind. One such thought was why I run or more specifically, why do I run races?
I ask myself that question over and over again and couldn't/can't come up with a satisfactory answer.Â My initial response wasÂ I like itâ€¦No, no you don't like it. At the beginning of every race your stomach is in your throat, it's the only time you perspire in nervous anticipation and, lets face it, the body hurts sometimes during, almost always after a race.Â Yes, running races hurts. You run faster and push yourself harder. That hurts.Â
Then I decided I run races because I want to challenge myself to do better than last time.Â No, no you don't challenge yourself against yourself, you challenge yourself against the runners at the head of the pack.Â That's wrong. The only person you need to race against is yourself.Â When you start trying to pit yourself against people genetically, physically superior, there will be disappointment. No fun and no way to succeed.
Another thought occurred to me that I run races because the result is what I control completely. I rely on no one else to get me from the start to the finish.Â It's all about my body, my mind, my sinew.Â In my work place, I sit behind a desk while others do the physical production work.Â Running allows me to put in some hard time.Â Could THIS be the reason?Â I'm sure it's one of the reasons I run and run to race.
One last thought on why I might run just to run:Â Running away.Â You know how some people sleep to escape the pressures of life? Or maybe some drink more than they should? My escape from stress, worries, and sometimes responsibility is a good run.
Fitness, fun, escape, a touch of masochismâ€¦guess I'll keep doing it until my mind or body cries "NO MORE!"
Why do you run? Why do you race?
Why do you do what you do that isn't always comfortable, sometimes it hurts, causes anxiety and regret that you decided to do it in the first place but you continue to keep doing it?
Sticks and stones andâ€¦Apple Twigs
Yay Martha Stewart!Â On page 60 of October's "Living" magazine, I found the best trick for using all those apple peels from the apple pies we make in the Fall.Â You're going to absolutely love these sweet treats.
In a nutshell, simply toss your left over organic apple peels with a few drops of water (this helps the spices stick), cinnamon and sugar.Â Just remember to wash the apples and thoroughly dry the skins.
If you use 12 organic apples, use 1/2 tsp. cinnamon and 1/4 cup sugar.Â Spread in a single layer on parchment lined pans and bake at 250 F for 2 1/2 hours, until they are curled and crisp.
Note: My mother is allergic to cinnamon so we used ginger and sugar.Â We also used a sweet Gala apple and didn't need much sugar.Â Remember, apples are naturally sweet so use as little sugar as you can but you need a little to caramelize while baking the peels. Remember! This is a special little treat soâ€¦
Suggestion:Â Having a Halloween Party? Why not make some apple twigs to put on the cocktail tables as snacks?
Doing a nutrition presentation to kids? Why not offer a little bit about the health attributes of fruit (fiber, antioxidants, phytonutrientsâ€¦) and, as a little treat, pass out some apple twigs?