Thursday, July 15, 2010

Stoplights: To stop or not to stop

First I'm behind on EVERYTHING: Blogs, twitter, pooping, trashy reality TV..... basically my life. I'm transitioning my job to another gal which means that I'm transitioning 8 hours a day and then working another 3-6 hours a day. BUT - I am still running. GYAMA (Get Your Ass Moving Anyway). Like everyone else, I get everything done - but I just get less sleep while doing it! :) Here is where I've ended up over the past few days:

-- Monday: 4 recovery miles at 8:15 pace
-- Tuesday: 6 miles with 4 kick ass miles at 6:55 tempo pace
-- Wednesday: 6 sorta long miles at 7:51 pace

Since I have only two weeks left in San Jose (where I travel for work) on Wednesday I decided to scare the locals with my bare chest get off the treadmill and get out into the streets. I had 6 miles planned at my new "normal" pace of 7:45. The issue? Stoplights. While silicon valley is not super populated there are a TON of stoplights to maneuver. I counted no fewer than 16 stoplights that I went through during my out and back trip. SIXTEEN! It was my own virtual game of Frogger.


Since I'm a bit of a blogging tool statistics dork, I try to keep my pace as close as possible to what I had planned...but the stoplights slowed me down. If you check out the Garmin pace graph dealie you can see the blue pace spike when I had to stop for a red light.

Normally, as much as I hate to admit it, I jaywalk (jayrun) across. I'll look both ways, make the sign of the cross, validate I have my RoadID on, and sprint across hoping that I don't end up flatter than Mel Gibson's career. It helps me save a bit of time and it is a bit of a impromptu Fartlek run...but it really throws me off.

Am I alone here? (Said in my best Dr Phil voice) I am as serious as a duck at a picnic table. (??? His similes make JUST as little sense) I'm truly interested in hearing how everyone handles these. Jayrun across? Wait it out? Or, strap on your leggings, head band, and maybe a side ponytail and jog in place at the stoplight. Doesn't jogging in place at the stoplight seem so 70s? Shoot - if you're going to do that, you might as well go ALL out 70s and join Jazzercise.

Let me know! As soon as I figure out how to make my own side ponytail, I'm going to get caught up on blogs. I miss seeing what everyone else is doing!!


Don't forget to enter my CEP Recovery Socks giveaway! You still have time to earn like 19 different entries!!

33 comments:

Jamoosh said...

What is the difference between a short mile and a sorta long mile? Inquiring mind and all.

Ace said...

Runcing is the only way to go. Running in place + dancing. Preferrably to some awesome tune like "Pump up the Jam". Do it now.

Chad said...

Fartlek across that intersection. If a cop tickets you for jaywalking then maybe he'll punch you and you'll become an internet sensation.

Karen said...

I think of it as interval training. Sprint! Running in place just seems - well - so 70s. You are right. :)

Megan said...

It depends on the intersection for me whether I wait it out or jayrun. But then again, I don't plan my routes, so if it looks like it may be a long time before I can get across the street I'll take a right instead and keep running.

I like the comments about making crossing the street your fartleks, genius!

Luke said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Luke said...

I usually jog in place for 15 seconds, then I get pissed off, stop, then I stand with the look of annoyance on my face and wait for an opening to sprint.

Michele said...

Hahaha your blogs always crack me up.

For me, it depends on the intersection. Normally I just go for it because it's 5am and there's not many crazies out on the road anyway.

Christina said...

I think studies have shown that jogging in place at stop lights doesn't help with the overall fitness.

Colin Hayes said...

I've seen people not only jog in place, but jog circles around the light pole while waiting.
I either stop, or jay-run if I can make it. Recently I jay-ran right in front of a cop, who apparently was more interested in getting to the donut shop.

Okay, that stereotypical b*tchslap was just wrong.

I'm sure coffee was involved, too.

K said...

I run in DC and it is riddled with stop lights. Luckily they also have countdowns on them so you know how long you have to wait. I jay-run if I am familiar with the intersection and I know it's clear but wait at those I don't quite understand (more than 4 roads or the lights are super weird and I can't tell who has the green light).

Adrienne said...

SO EXCITED I found your blog. Your hilarious. Depends how far into a run I am if I am annoyed or not by a stoplight. Sometimes it's the best excuse without it counting as an actual excuse to stop. :)

inspiREDtorun13 said...

I get pretty annoyed by stoplights too. I try to stick to jogging trails or neighborhoods to avoid this. Or the treadmill... that I actually like...because I'm weird.

Also these are all probably signs that I've never trained for a marathon. I'm sure it's quite difficult to do a 20 miler and avoid stoplights.

Chelsea said...

I'm 50/50 - if it's an intersection I know well (and the light is pedestrian controlled) I'll jay-run as fast as my legs will go.

If it's super high traffic, then I just wait, hands on hips, looking at all those brats drinking margaritas at happy hour on the patio while I am out exercising. Sometimes I wonder what they would do if I just reached over and took a real quick sip of their drink. MUWAHAHA.

Emz said...

Treamill -1
team frogger - 0

YAY ME!!

Rad Runner said...

That light must be operated by sleeping monkies...

Lisa said...

Good job getting your runs in with so much going on!

I hate stop lights while I'm running - that's why I try to stick to parks or paths as much as possible. If I get stuck by a traffic light in the early am with no traffic, I go. If there is oncoming cars, I stop. But, that's what we do here in NYC, even when we're walking!

kilax said...

Hope you are done teaching the new person soon! That is rough! I am currently a new person's coach... I will be responsible for them for the next 2 years! But she caught on quick. Phew.

I wait for stoplights becuase I am afraid of getting hit. Okay, unless I am somewhere really rural, like Iowa. Then I don't even look! Ha!

Runners Fuel said...

I think they are considered interval...hurry...sprint

Jeri said...

I totally go thru the red lights. It's so annoying to have your rhythm disrupted by a stupid light. Ugh.

Morgan said...

You and me both! (Being behind and loving EZE) Fartleks always make me giggle but then so does naked people...

Pam said...

Can't help you. I have to dodge more roadkill than stoplights.

Angie Bishop said...

If I have a nice clear shot I will fartlek that light silly.

Jill said...

How come Tuesday's 6 miles weren't sorta long miles but Wedneday's were?

I'll be in San Jose on the 26th...if still there, give me a shout.

As for lights, I just cross...and pray for my life.

Cynthia O'H said...

I use traffic lights as an excuse to catch my breath. Really, though, I almost always have to because I either have my guys with me or I'm at a busy intersection. For me, it doesn't really make a difference in the end (and it really helps when the humidity is soaring).

So, enjoy them, and don't sweat it.

AZ said...

Haven't done an open water swim yet? Really there is nothing to it. Only real difference is the need for sighting. Also you could use a wetsuit so you won't sink, or just swim in 5 feet of water so you can touch the whole way. I did a triathlon like that. Right in the middle of a swim two guys were trying to run through chest deep water.

AZ said...

Oh yeah, the intersections. I never run in place. Seems odd. I use them as a breather. Is that cheating?

Chris K said...

Dude, you're behind on life and you haven't even had the kid yet? Uh-oh.

EZEthan said...

When at home I try to strategically avoid them... if I do come across one sometimes I'll change direction and run parallel to traffic until a traffic gap big enough to pass comes along... if all else fails, I'll stop but I'll also stop my Garmin.

Her Name is Rio said...

If no visible traffic and people drive less than 40MPH in that area, I fartlek. If any car is there or if people drive more than 40MPH in area, I stop. I've had a couple of close calls- the fast drivers just don't expect you so they're going on all cylinders and all of the sudden I'm there. Scary!
Since I'm not a shark, I don't bother jogging in place.

GeorgiaSnail said...

Do Not Be That Guy...we all know that guy that is jogging in place at the light. Jayrun when you can, or wait patiently...

aron said...

thats exactly why i like the bike trails, not as many stoplights - they are soooo annoying!

sRod said...

I tempt fate all the time, which is very, very bad, especially when you have to deal with buses and taxis thinking the road is made for them. But as long as you check both ways, you are safe.