The Fourth Quarter…
This is the fourth part of a four-part series in which I reflect back on 2016. Links to other parts in this series are at the end of this part.
The 2016 Presidential Election overshadowed this quarter, and not surprisingly either. I voted Third Party. I have my reasons, and that’s all I’ll say about that here.
Last October, Christine and I ran in the Pumpkins in the Park 5K for the first time, a race that is run on or near Halloween, so costumes are highly encouraged. Our 2015 theme was “French KISS” and we won the contest! For 2016, we donned Star Trek outfits in honor of the original television series’ 50th anniversary (I still say Kirk rules!).
Thanksgiving typically signals the end of my racing season. I managed to pull off a decent time at the Race with Grace 10K in some chilly, rainy conditions. I’ve continued to run through the remainder of the year, but the miles have dwindled. For the final quarter of 2016, I logged ~194 miles, giving me a total of ~824 miles total for 2016. I was surprised to see that I had surpassed my 2015 total by 45 miles (779 miles). Although my pace has slowed, and I didn’t run as many races as I would have liked to, I am very happy that I stayed injury-free! The last few years, I was hampered with hamstring tendinitis, strained calves, and plantar fasciitis. So, to get through the year without any injuries was a big accomplishment!
November saw an accomplishment of a different kind. When I was a kid, I played Dungeons & Dragons. I stopped playing late high school/early college. I didn’t play again until a couple of years ago when my kids wanted to play. So, we embarked on a couple adventures, but time got away from us and D&D went back into the box, until this past August. Syd’s friend wanted to play, as did her parents. So, we got together and worked our way through an adventure that wrapped up just before Thanksgiving. It was so much fun! We took a break until just recently. Syd’s friend put together an adventure and we kicked just kicked it off. So far, her friend is doing a good job as the Dungeon Master. I wrote about resurrecting D&D and enjoying the family time it provided back in September.
December was a blur of band and choral concerts, basketball games, holiday shopping, and wrapping up projects for work and grad school. I learned that two of my presentation proposals for Spectrum 2017 were accepted by the Rochester chapter of Society for Technical Communication (STC). Yay! I last presented at Spectrum 2010, but have attended since then. I’ll be talking about my emerging technologies class. Spectrum is in March. And that brings us to today – New Year’s Eve!
…and a Looking Ahead
I’m looking forward to a number of things in 2017:
- More basketball games (Sam’s season continues and Syd’s starts in January)
- New races and running some familiar ones
- Interesting and challenging projects at work and in grad school
- Spectrum 2017 (I’ve got a lot of work to do…)
- More time with Christine and my family and friends
I also want to continue blogging at writeguyink. A resolution for myself will be to write at least one post a month. With Spectrum 2017 and other topics in mind, that shouldn’t be hard to do. It’s just committing the time.
I also want to improve my guitar playing (electric, acoustic, and bass). I recently started learning how to make home recordings, but I’ve stumbled around with the software. Hopefully I’ll get it figured out and, if I record something half-decent, I’ll share it. Guitar is a topic I’ve meant to blog about, but time got away from me this year.
As for running, I mentioned new races. One that looks very interesting is the Black Diamond Express trail half marathon. This race is run on the Lehigh Valley trail, which was once a bed for train tracks. I’ve run parts of this trail before, and it was flat and soft, and featured some breath-taking scenery. From what I’ve heard, this race is a good one. Christine and I plan on running this as well as returning to Seneca Lake to run the Seneca 7 relay race. We did this one in 2015 and it was a blast! 77.7 miles of hills and beautiful surroundings.The 2016 race sold out in the blink of an eye, but we got in for 2017. So, that should be fun! I’m also seriously considering a trip back to Buffalo for its half marathon. Let’s hope it’s a bit cooler next year!
And with that, I wish all of you a very happy, healthy, and safe New Year!