Monday, September 9, 2013

40 Days to Better: Day 8

Today, I ran 6.4 miles at an 8:03 pace.  A nice little shake-out after the 20 on Saturday and a relatively easy workout before hitting the track tomorrow.

I had an interesting experience at the corner of Bellona and Stevenson that led to my topic for today.  I have written about focus.  Today, I write about the flip side--distraction.

As I was running from Charles toward Bellona on Stevenson and approaching the corner mentioned, I saw a car coming northwest-bound on Bellona.  The traffic on Stevenson had the green light.  Much to my surprise, the car on Bellona barely paused at the intersection, made a right turn on red onto Stevenson.  Then, without going more than 50 feet on Stevenson away from Bellona toward the right hand side of the map, it made a U-turn (at a place for which a U-turn is clearly not intended), and then made another right turn on red.  The end result was that it continued northwest on Bellona without waiting at the red light.  It made me break my stride and I shook my fists and screamed at the car.  Perhaps not the best move at 5:45 AM, but it made me very annoyed.

Distracted driving is a real concern for me.  In fact, I have only three races planned this fall--the Baltimore Running Festival on October 12 for which I will run the half marathon, the Turkey Trot in Towson on Thanksgiving Day,  and the Heather Hurd 5K in Harford County.  This will be my third Heather Hurd 5K.  The family started the race in honor of their daughter who was killed by a distracted driver and it honors the many killed in Maryland each year as a result of similarly poor decisions by drivers.

I don't know if the driver this morning was on a cell, but I realize there are many distractions--including children--and sometimes just watching the clock as we rush to work is a distraction.

This led me to think about getting distracted in other parts of life.  And that is part of my "to better" thought for today.

Avoid distraction at work.

Avoid distraction while driving.

Avoid distraction when interacting with my kids

Avoid being distracted from my focus on my marriage.  Nothing--not my running, not my best friends, nothing should distract me from that.

Avoid being distracted while I run--it can lead to injury and poor results.

Just concentrate.  Just focus.  But it is more than focus.  Because sometimes focus on the wrong thing can lead to distraction from what is important.

And, what this morning reminded me, is to take care to avoid the effects of others' distractions.   

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