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An intellectual nomad.
Interests: running, weightlifting, taekwondo, snowshoeing, hiking, reading, biking, sewing, scrapbooking, science, gene therapy, drug development, fabric, american football, neuroscience, history of science
Recent Activity
I don't know why I decided to start running ultramarathons. I suppose the simplest answer is because I could. Maybe a more complicated answer has something to do with always needing to prove myself over and over again. The reason I keep doing it is because it seems so simple. All I have to do is keep moving forward. When things are bad, remember that they will get better. When they are good, remember that they will not stay that way and don't get too carried away (apparently, I'm actually supposed to enjoy it when things are good, but I... Continue reading
Posted 7 hours ago at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I haven't been swimming in about two weeks. I have some very good reasons (not excuses). For example, the pool was closed and then I was out of town. On monday, I was feeling sick. Was I really sick? Yes. Was I contagious and sick enough that I shouldn't have gone swimming? I don't know. I probably would have felt better after swimming, but I came home from work early and took a nap, so probably it was a good call. The problem is, every time I make the decision not to go swimming, it makes it easier to skip... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Evil Genius(es) in Training
Despite it's title (and I had forgotten the subtitle, so I really only remembered the most cringe-worthy part), this was a good book. The basic premise is that the mind controls our athletic performance to the point that if we believe that we can accomplish things that we may not be sufficiently trained for if our mind believes we can. On the flip side, we will often fail at things that we could accomplish from lack of belief. He explores this using examples from elite athletes and tries to provide tips and tricks one could use in training. The tips... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I skipped a race this weekend. In fact, I think I've skipped the last two races for which I signed up. I have a lot of reasons, which are completely rational and may even be correct. To whit: I bit off more than I could chew, I signed up to do a mountain bike race and my equipment sucked and I wasn't even sure they would let me ride because my bike wouldn't pass inspection. I didn't want to get up early, I didn't tell my coach. I signed up for two many races too close together and I had... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I wish I could draw. I would draw what my fears look like. Wait, I bet the internet has an answer. I'll be right back. Nope, just a bunch of cheesy motivational posters. I guess this one will have to do. Anyway, I see my fears as a big amorphous blob. If I don't face them and do what scares me, the blob gets bigger and bigger until it surrounds me and swallows me whole. I guess what I'm saying is that it starts out like a small blob, but it can grow out of all proportion if I don't... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I connected with my physical self through Taekwondo. I started because my sister, who I look up to, was doing it. I joined the sparring team because she punched me in the face and told me I was only upset because I couldn't handle not being good at something right away. I was terrible to start. Really terrible. I was slow and had not fighting instincts. I cried. I cried every single time I went to practice. I think the instructors were surprised that I just kept coming back. Every time I cried I became more determined. At my first... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I was angry, emotional, tearful. In a fit of rage, I threw the phone across the room in no particular direction. By some accident or miracle, it hit my partner in the head.* I could not have done that had I tried. In return, he threatened to put my belongings in the microwave and destroy them. I called his bluff because I didn't care. I stopped taking medication for depression. He used that against me. He acted as if that simple fact discredited everything I said when we argued. I threatened to leave over and over. He convinced me that... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Evil Genius(es) in Training
Most often my depression takes the form of an inability to start. I exist in a perpetual state of inertia. In my head I have a list of projects I would like to do, but the energy of activation is too high. Once started, the same inertia can make it equally hard to stop. They become zombie projects which, lacking the perfection of being "finished" just keep sucking more energy away. I do not stop to consider if they are still worth pursuing, if they still hold my interest. Perhaps I have forgotten what captured my interest to start. I... Continue reading
Posted Oct 9, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I can see it clearly, a young blonde girl in blue ribbed tights and a plaid pleated skirt which was probably the height of fashion 5 years before but now looks oddly out of place. She is still confident and blissfully unaware that she is a little too tall and a little too big to fit in with her peers. She stands in the gym in her tights, no shoes. The other girls are wearing leggings and sweaters or pants. They form tight little groups, giggling behind the teacher's back. She stands apart, places herself near the teacher. The teacher... Continue reading
Posted Oct 8, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I love running in the dark. The world shrinks to the size of your headlamp bubble and the shape of the terrain is only what you can feel with your feet. Running downhill feels almost like falling, but the uphills feel more gradual, only as steep as what you can see. The dark of morning has a different shape than the dark of night. Night has an energy. People are warm in their homes, they've left the lights on, maybe they are even still having dinner. I have a different energy too. Perhaps I am still thinking about the day,... Continue reading
Posted Oct 5, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
Less than 100 meters into the swim and I am drowning. I've been warned. People told me that triathlon swim starts could be rough, but to be honest, that isn't the problem. The problem is, I've started out too fast, too fast and I'm still trying to keep up with the stronger swimmers in the group. I pop my head up to see where we are. Breathing too hard, I think. There is no way that I can make it to the buoy, not to mention the end of the swim. I check again. Where are the lifeguards? They are... Continue reading
Posted Sep 20, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
In my mind, I enter the water gracefully, letting the water slowly cover my face, my ears, my hair, letting it block out sound. I stay under water for a beat, open my eyes, then surface softly, a picture of tranquility. In reality, the pool is loud and the light is poor. I eye the other swimmers warily as we put on our goggles and swim caps. I shiver myself to the edge of the pool and stick one toe in. I wait until the last possible moment, when everyone else is in the pool. I splash awkwardly, flopping as... Continue reading
Posted Sep 19, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
This morning I saw the sunrise. It was fleeting. I only caught a glimpse as I was cresting a hill and then it was gone. I didn't have a camera, so I didn't get a picture. Maybe it is better that way. I believed, for a second, that I was the only one who had seen the sunrise. When I looked again, the sky had returned to its dull shade of grey. I had a rock in my shoe. This rock has been there for several days now and I just keep kicking it to the front and moving on.... Continue reading
Posted Sep 17, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I don't always take the time to notice everything that is good in my life, but a few weeks ago my husband caught me standing outside, just staring off into the distance. When he asked me if everything was OK I said, "Yes, I was just looking at our yard and thinking that I'm really very lucky to have the life that I have." I could never really imagine how good my life would be. I've spent far too much time in the dark spaces of my own mind, in places where there was only black and white, success or... Continue reading
Posted Sep 15, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
The past few mornings have been clear. So clear that it seems I can see all the stars. I don't see stars a lot. Growing up in the city, there was always too much ambient light. I saw the stars only when I snuck out of the house in Maine at night to wander down to the beach alone. For a time the stars were the thing that would calm me, center me. If it was cold, and quiet, and dark, and I was alone, I could recognize that they were beautiful. I recognize now that for a time, looking... Continue reading
Posted Sep 14, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I am vacationing in a place that provides me daily evidence of my own privilege. We play at the pool and on the golf course surrounded by people who look mostly like us. It has not escaped my attention that a large proportion of the service jobs (waiters and waitresses, cleaning staff, groundskeepers) are filled by people who do not look like us. I note that this causes me some noticeable discomfort. This is discomfort both with the evidence of my own privilege and with the fact that I know of no suitable way to address it. I do not... Continue reading
Posted Jul 9, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
In high school one year, I volunteered to be on the team of kids who debated whether we should celebrate columbus day. I was assigned to the team that argued against it. My job was to appeal to the emotions, to drag the debate through the mud. I did. I looked up every horrible story about white Europeans and what they did to Native Americans. I talked about smallpox infested blankets and forced death marches. I described the horror of dragging ones gunshot entrails through the mud. I had quotes and I had numbers. I told these stories because it... Continue reading
Posted Jun 15, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
Day 1: Ran 4 miles on tired, sore legs. I'm glad I did it. Since the last 3-4 miles of the half marathon were where things fell apart, I decided to work on my mental game. I kept telling myself to keep running, because it is supposed to hurt and no matter how much it hurts, being disappointed in myself for walking is worse. In other news, I think I need a foam roller. Learned about the double Boston marathon (start a the finish, run to the start, run the marathon.) Of course, that is what I want to do... Continue reading
Posted Apr 19, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
The best thing is when these two come tumbling down the stairs in the morning together. The kitchen door is closed, so I can't really hear what they are saying, but I can hear their laughter and their footsteps. They are making jokes and faces together. I just stand at the kitchen counter with my coffee and I listen. Continue reading
Posted Apr 7, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I hadn't decided how to vote until I took the ballot. Heck, I hadn't even decided which ballot to take. I'm unenrolled, so I could take either. I briefly considered taking a Republican ballot because I hate Trump so much. I considered it, but I couldn't figure out for whom I would vote. For a while it seemed like Kasich was maybe the best of the bunch. Then he went and did <a href="">this</a>. Maybe it bothered me more than it should have. In the end, I took the Democratic ballot and voted for Sanders. I have to admit that... Continue reading
Posted Mar 3, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I changed my name on Facebook. Partly, this was because I am uncomfortable with the idea that people could find me. I wanted to be more anonymous. Also though, I waste too much time on Facebook and I share too much without thinking. This bothers me. No, that isn't right. It doesn't bother me to share, but it bothers me to share on someone else's terms. It bothers me to share in little bits and bites without explaining and then it bothers me to explain. Somehow, changing my name seemed like an opportunity to change my identity, to change how... Continue reading
Posted Mar 2, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
The thing I like best about swimming is that my form is terrible. Sounds weird, right? Here is the thing: almost every other sport I do, the basic comment I get is, "your form is great, I have nothing to tell you." You know what that means? It means that the only way to get better is to just keep doing what I'm doing, over and over again. I've reached the level of proficiency* where it is all about repetition. We went on vacation. I took a snowboarding lesson because I haven't snowboarded in 7 years. On the last run,... Continue reading
Posted Feb 20, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
When I resolved to write one thing every day, I never said it had to be good. I never said it had to have a beginning, a middle, and an end. I never said it had to be meaningful, beautiful or resolve anything. I only said I would do it. Sometimes beauty and meaning and resolution have to wait. Continue reading
Posted Jan 6, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I expect too much of myself and am therefore afraid to start. Once started, I continue out of habit and fear of what would happen if I stopped. I stop and then must start again. Sometimes, when I pull in to the gym and there are too many cars in the parking lot, I want to turn around and go home. I go in anyways. When I swim, I am always afraid I will be the slowest in my lane. Sometimes I am. I don't worry that I will finish last. I probably won't lose my job, even if I... Continue reading
Posted Jan 4, 2016 at Evil Genius(es) in Training
I yell. I am impatient. My humor tends strongly towards sarcasm. Sometimes I even let them eat fruit rollups before breakfast and play with paint and glitter glue. Continue reading
Posted Nov 12, 2015 at Evil Genius(es) in Training