A last minute change of plan, I do have a post for today, which I have written back in March but decided to keep it a little longer until I reach Day 365, because it makes more sense that way, since it is a yearly summary. For this quarter though, it will just a normal summary.
So bear with me. A review is usually take me more time to write because I have to go back the last fifty posts and glean some insights or find something interesting to retell again. I am doing this for myself as well as for some people (my real life friends) who only stop by every so often and they want to know what the scope with my life. This will give them everything. I bookmark (under bookmarks) this page so they can easily find it as well as other monthly/quarterly summaries there. The last quarter summary is given here.
This quarter was relatively quiet since we were all sheltered at home due to the coronavirus pandemic. All my races were canceled, including the one coming this Saturday, which I have been training crazy since returning from Chile in December. I didn’t take any trip since. I was working from home and each day was like the next, very alone, and always the same. There was no different between weekend and weekdays – except during the week I worked. We all put in long hours. In the beginning it was hard adjusting to working from home. The normal coworkers/manager interaction was gone. Now I have to manage my own projects and tasks and usually couldn’t finish them within the 8-5 time frame. Everyone hours were all over the place. The day starts at 7 for some and finishes around 8-9 at night, with meals in between. There were very little communication among us except for work. My assistant started out sending me daily hello and then she totally went silent after two weeks. I guess I am not very popular person. The truth comes out – or they too were experiencing the same, ready to kill their annoying family. I am not offended. So be it. We have Zoom, but everyone is exhausted from that. I do it for church and my running group, so it was really fatigue.
My work manager called me from time to time though and usually it is not about my work — he treats me like his friend – we talked about investment and everything. Mostly he does the talking. I love phone calls. Millenials hate it, hence the ‘silent treatment’ from them. Those are who I work with. I got into investing because of him. We were playing the market like crazy during this pandemic – he said so himself, it was very risky and he admitted that it was no longer sound investing but gambling. We lost big time after the first week, he stayed out of it now but I gambled on the airlines, and burned by that. Not blaming him on that, he usually gives good tips, airline was totally on me. I did it after reading the millenials were betting on cruises to make a killing when they are bellying up, so I went for the airlines. anyway… my sadness 🙂
One good thing / bad thing came out from this period, depending on the perspective, was I had to cook my own meals because all the restaurants were closed/ and I was too afraid to go get food from them when they reopened up. I ate healthier.
As the result, I saved ton of money. There were no races to sign up, no eating out, and no trip to go. I didn’t order things online because there were no trips to go. I only buy stuff for my running or backpacking. No trip means no shopping. Money only comes in and no where to spend it on except the normal “fixed” expenses like housing and car payment. Oh, my transportation cost dropped to near zero. Is not life great!
It was sucks though. I was going crazy really and experiencing depression, lack of motivation, and a bit maniac side too – can be seen in my running, since I live myself. It was like being in prison, yet knowing I have the key to the cell. There was nothing to do! I have two other roommates but they left the during this period. My running was not going anywhere. There was very little motivation to run since there was no race to train for — for me it is like why study if there won’t be a test?
I did couple virtual races. The results were not good. The course around my neighborhood sucks – since it is not a real race – cars don’t stop for you. I just not running my heart out. There was no aid station, so I had to either bring my own snacks or buy them on the way, which eat (pun) into my time.
Some people ask me what are virtual races. They are canceled races but like a consolation prize given. The race director usually do not give refund since most of the money from race registration are usually spent way ahead before the actual race (such as paying insurance, staff salary, shirts, medals, sometimes race food, site reservation, price money sometimes in term of gift certificates, and usually very little is left over by race day). So the reason they put up so call virtual races where you run on your own at a place you choose, and you report the time and they will record it and send you a shirt and a medal. There won’t be first/second/third place award for this kind of races since it is nearly impossible to certify the course/truthfullness of the timekeeper. Virtual race is just a fun event for us runners, yay.
However, some people recognize the truth and think it is a scam and raise hell to the race director (my Shipyard Marathon was like that, 9/10 of people were unhappy about doing a virtual). They were such a whinner. True, with one complaint was that the RD was slow in communicate until very late whereas all other races were already canceling way ahead of time. The Roanoke RD were almost at tears explaining why the race had to be canceled. I got my shirts for these races, and I should take a picture of them! They were memorable moments of 2020.
Though I have lived at my place (about 10 years) for a long time, this coronas virus, forced me for the first time to run around my neighborhood. Over the three months I got to know the area better. Not just my immediate neighborhood but the whole region as well. For the locals who know the geography, I went all the way north to Reston, and all the way south to Springfield, and all the way East…to Fairfax Circle (exaggerated, halfway only, but last night I ran all the way to Arlington, but the run report has not been written yet). I explored the nearby places, going into all the trails such as Cub Run, Chantilly along Walney Road, and to Fairfax County Government Center. Only direction I have not done is running to the west.
I did couple marathons, a 50k, 50 miler, and a 100k. Here are reports: Maine Coast Marathon, Roanoke Marathon, DC Rock n Roll Marathon (I didn’t report it though, so no medal and shirt), 50k run, and a 100k run.
Finally in May I was reenergized after invited to run the great virtual race across Tennessee (GVRAT). It is 1000k and we have until August 31 to finish. It seems to be a challenge because I don’t even know if I could do it. 1000k seems too big a number to comprehend. Yet I signed up and each morning or night I would be out on the road running. I never run this much even if I were training for a race. This Virtual Tennessee race brought me to a new level in my training and understanding (this will go into another post), “so this is what the big boys do”. I will write a race report once I am done.
I had a lot of time on my hand during this period and wrote up this little bit of post, freshing out what I really want in life. It is not a resolution or a mission statement, or a vision, but it is a step closer, a dream. It is what is in my heart.
That is it. No idea how to bring it to a close. Can you imagine, half a year is gone? I am still chasing my resolution. I know I have to do better the second half to bring this year to a good conclusion. So much have happened in our nation (protesting, and the virus), many want this year to be done already. I need to focus. What is my goal and how to achieve it.