Sunday, October 28, 2012

Half Marathon and the Aftermath

This has been a difficult post for me to write. I've gone through several versions before deciding on this approach. I believe this is hard because the half marathon was hard for me. On physical and mental levels, it was the pits!
Physically, the race took a toll on my body. The weather was decidedly colder than expected. When I signed up, I thought, Great, the run will be at the end of October. It should be in the upper 50's at race's start. Instead, a cold front came through central Texas, so when I crossed the starting line, it was 47, with a biting wind. It did warm up a little, but the wind kept up.
By the fourth mile, I was struggling. The stitch by my kidney went away, but my thighs tightened up. I had not stretched well enough. Soon, the pains traveled to other muscles and joints. When I reached the turn (at 6.5 miles, the other half-marathoners and I turned back for the starting line), knees were swollen, calves cramped, and the inside of my right foot was rubbing weird. This would continue for the remainder of my time. I stopped several times to stretch, but the pain returned.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

I Just Discovered Photoshop Express

Before:

After:

My eyes keep volleying back and forth between these two pictures. I'm dizzy now. I mean, one is obviously untouched, the other messed with to oblivion. Do either of them even look good? I don't know anymore. Sigh.

I'm not an arteest. I don't have an eye for such things. All I know is I hate seeing Ugly Photos on blogs. Then I look at my blog and see Ugly Photos. Double sigh.

I've resolved to fix this. I read about how to make your backgrounds blurry. Check. It's still hard to remember what to do with my camera in the moment, when that little subject of mine is being so incredibly adorable. Like, I know I want my aperture setting either way high or way low. But I can never remember which, and I never have the presence of mind to fiddle with the proper little set of numbers to get the right effect. You know what I mean? It's the pressure of the moment! I buckle under such pressure. I wish I could remember those setting guidelines when I'm taking the photos that are making history. Like all those hospital pictures? Triple sigh.

We don't have a super fancy camera. My mom found a bargain on a Kodak camera that's a step up from a point-and-shoot but not a full-blown DSLR (we weren't ready to commit to that big of an investment; in other news, can you believe Kodak isn't making cameras anymore?), so you can manipulate it like a DSLR with manual settings, but there's no switching out lenses, etc. Which is a good middle ground for us.

We also don't have smart phones, so there will be none of this Instagram business. Sorry, filters.

Quadruple sigh.