Category Archives: resolutions

Everybody wants a rock to wind a piece of string around (yes, yet again)


I previously have written about this rock back last year on my running blog, then again in a reprint in July on this blog and referenced it in a post later that month. This morning, I found the rock underneath my desk and after I cleaned the cat hair off of it, I took the above photo.

Rather than repeat the unrealistic goals I set for myself, I will summarize: Get up way too early to

  1. Read the Liturgy of the Hours
  2. Exercise (run or gym) and
  3. Read books about running, specifically by George Sheehan, John Bingham and/or Jeff Galloway, to get motivated for rest of day.

Now the parts that are unrealistic are neither the exercise nor the reading, and maybe surprisingly not the early (well at least for me) either. The parts that are unrealistic are two-fold:

  1. “Too early,” with a goal of getting up by 5:30 a.m., which happens also to be the time my wife gets up.
  2. The order of the parts with starting with the Scripture readings, then the exercise, then the reading, also at specific times: 5:30, 6:30, then 7:30. As if I’m in the military and will get lashes if I don’t adhere to that schedule.

As to No. 1, because not to be too crude, one of the first things I need to do after I get up is visit the…um…lavatory, I’d rather not conflict with my wife’s…um…”lavatory time.” So 5:30 is out and also my wife likes to have time “to decompress” to start her day so I don’t want to conflict with that. So with that in mind, what’s more realistic?

I’m thinking 7 a.m. because then I should be able to get out the door to exercise whether gym (still need to renew membership, especially for the winter) or run by 7:30 a.m. (and with winter, 7:30 a.m. won’t be too hot).

As for No. 2 with the order, I’ll exercise first because I’m afraid if I start with reading, I’ll just be tempted to go back to bed or even lie down and…ahem…”mediate” while I’m reading. Then I can do the readings with breakfast and not lock in a time, because who knows how long I’ll be out on certain days. I am especially thinking of the days where I’m just beginning this and won’t be running, but walking. It might end up being an hour/hour and half of walking around town instead of a good solid half hour/hour of running.

Normally, I’m up by 8 a.m. anyway so an extra hour getting up is not going to hurt and I know in the past when I have gotten up earlier and exercised early, it gives me more energy through the day. So without further adieu, I begin tomorrow.

Here’s They Might Be Giants with “We Want A Rock,” part of the lyrics which I used as the title for this post:

This post also can be found on my main blog, an unfinished person (in an unfinished universe), where you can get a more complete picture of this unfinished person.


Revise, revise, revise: A new schedule

For months now I’ve self-imposed a schedule that hasn’t worked. It is as follows: Monday, Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday – run; Tuesday, Thursday, strength training and Friday, off; with the addition of Wednesday as a “no-computer” day.

Today is Thursday and a new twist to the mix this week: getting up to exercise by 6:30 a.m. Monday through Thursday: has dwindled by now rationalizing to getting up 15 minutes later each morning as the week progressed. Monday, I was up at 6 a.m. and made it to the gym by 6:30 to get a good run in on the treadmill and elliptical. Tuesday, I was up at 6:15 a.m., but after getting ready to go to the gym, I decided I wouldn’t have enough time to get in a lengthy enough workout to make it worthwhile for me to go so I “bagged” it and then because of work commitments didn’t make it in afternoon either. Yesterday, I was up at 6:30 a.m. and then didn’t run until 8:30 a.m. because it was dark outside (waaah! and I didn’t have any reflective clothing). Today, I was up at 6:45 a.m. and too late for the gym, which closes at 7:30 a.m.

It seems like for me and I’ve noticed for some others, the real “Hump Day” isn’t Wednesday but Thursday. The let-down comes on Thursday. As a result, this morning I’ve decided instead of fighting it, I’m going to let it happen. Let the let-down happen naturally. Give in to the let-down for one day. By Thursday, I’m burnt out…so be it.

Let my week begin on a Friday. Run on Fridays, Sundays, Mondays and Wednesday, that way also no more than one day off between runs. Strength train at the gym on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Further breakdown:

  • Friday, short run, starting at 2 to 5 miles, 6:30 a.m. run, preferably gym, treadmill and elliptical, physically the start of the week
  • Saturday, strength training, 8 a.m., gym, 1 1/2 to 2 hour workout
  • Sunday, medium run, starting a 5 to 7 miles, afternoon run 2-4 p.m. mentally and spiritually, leaves time for devotions and Mass in the morning, usually 11 a.m. Mass
  • Monday, short run, starting at 2 to 5 miles, 6:30 a.m. run, preferably gym, treadmill and elliptical (with borough council meeting I cover as correspondent for newspaper at 6 p.m. on second and fourth Mondays, this also works)
  • Tuesday, strength training, 3:30 p.m., gym, 1 1/2 to 2 hour workout (with school board meeting I cover as correspondent for newspaper at 7:30 p.m. on second Tuesdays this also works)
  • Wednesday, long run, starting at 7 to 10 miles, afternoon run 2-4 p.m., also fits in spiritually and mentally with Wednesday being a day off the computer, time for Eucharistic Adoration in morning, running in afternoon and reading and writing in evening when mind is free of distraction of computer
  • Thursday, no exercise, refuel physically and mentally restart week with new blog entries here and on my other two blogs

The main thing is I can focus on my running with this schedule, even if the strength training part gets thrown off, and I start off my days early enough on Fridays and Mondays that if something comes up later in the day, I won’t have an excuse not to run. The only “trick” will be devoting Wednesday afternoon to the long run and letting others know that I will be unavailable during that afternoon and pretty much that day. But I think this is much more workable and flexible than the schedule I self-imposed earlier this year.

(Note: This also does not mean that I will be giving up getting up by 6:30 a.m. To the contrary, I still will be getting up by 6:30 at least Monday through Friday to start my day.)

New Year’s Resolution No. 1: Run in a marathon in 2008

The Lord God is my help, therefore I am not disgraced; I have set my face like flint, knowing that I shall not be put to shame.”

Isaiah 50:7

I, Bryan G. Robinson, being of sound and disposing mind and memory and age 38 at the time of this writing, and not being actuated by any duress, menace, fraud, mistake, or undue influence, do make, publish, and declare this to be my resolution to run and finish a marathon in the Year of Our Lord (or Common Era, in the spirit of interfaith cooperation) 2008.

With y’all as my witnesses, I, Bryan G. Robinson, hereby set my face like flint toward the goal of running and finishing in a marathon in 2008, on this 22nd day of December, 22, 2007 at 3:12 a.m. in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, United States of America.

–Bryan Grant Robinson

New Year’s Resolutions

I did this last year and at least one of those resolutions is on its way to being resolved. That resolution was No. 2 to strength train three times a week. I am now doing that on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. However, many of them were never realized, partially because of my problems with acid reflux and partially because of procrastination. So my resolutions for this year, again not particularly in order of importance and with some the same as last year. This year I am not having as many resolutions as last year. This way, I should be able to actually complete them. Without further adieu, here they are:

  1. To run in the Cook Forest Half Marathon at the end of March. I’ve already signed up and am doing a 16-week training program.
  2. To finish the year at a consistent 9-minute per mile pace in training and races. I said, eight minutes last year, but I’m not sure if that’s realistic.
  3. To choose a marathon to run in at least by 2008, if not the end of the year 2007, depending on how the half marathon and the rest of the year goes.
  4. To run trails in the Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania; to run more hills, period.
  5. To run a trail race within the next two years.

Re: No. 4 Resolution

Re: last entry: “Kim thinks I can run in a marathon by October, at the Marine Corps Marathon. Personally, I don’t want to rush it…” Well, I might have to rethink that. She’s presenting some convincing evidence (aren’t you glad to know, Kim?) that I can do it. It involves a 26-week program before the race, plus I figure I’ll be running some hills here near my hometown that probably isn’t going to hurt either.Tonight’s run: 32 minute 5K (10:19 mile) on the treadmill at the gym. Not where I want to be, but better than where I’ve been (last Thursday: 37:40, 12:09 mile). Tonight started at a slower pace and built up speed. No inclines. Felt pretty good.

New Year’s resolutions

In no order, and not particularly in order of importance (see No. 8 especially, which should be higher, like at No. 1).

  1. To run at least four times a week.
  2. To strength train at least three times a week.
  3. To run more than a 5K in training. I can’t seem to break the barrier, except for once in a while. I have a graph on RunLog and it shows a steady line at 5K. (Yawn!)
  4. To run more than a 5K in races. My first goal is a 10-K, which should be the Laurel Festival Footrace in June (not sure of the date yet, but I’ll find out).
  5. To run in a half-marathon by the end of the year, if not two. Kim thinks I can run in a marathon by October, at the Marine Corps Marathon. Personally, I don’t want to rush it. My goal is by 2009, which I know will be before then, but not this year, I don’t think. I need to get in better shape first and I want it to be a steady improvement, steady, but not too fast.
  6. To run the Camptown Races this fall, preferably with my dad, if he can do it, or maybe the Laurel Classic, if it’s a better course than Camptown, which I’m sure it is.
  7. To finish the year at a consistent 8-minute per mile pace in training and races. Right now, I have to push it to make 10 minutes. I usually average around 11 minutes a mile in training; not sure of races yet.
  8. To keep track of my running better via RunLog, training log from Runner’s World, etc.
  9. To learn more about heart rates, BMIs, all the physical fitness “things” I don’t know, but should know (consult Jon Sovocool), to see how it can help me improve my times.
  10. To run trails, to run more hills, period.
  11. To run a trail race within the next two years.