Thursday, February 21, 2019

Seven Fat Cows 4.1: Intervals


While Rick and Milo were doing their morning stretches before running Milo commented “You have been acting pretty peppy. Are you ready for something a little different?”

Rick had been running the same two miles out and walking the two miles back for the last three weeks. The first week was brutal. The second week was OK. The third week he was itching for more distance.

In the meantime his push-ups had grown from sets of five to sets of ten. Milo was letting Rick manage that himself. But Milo had been holding Rick back for the last week on the running.

“You bet!” Rick said. “How far are we going to run today?”

“Less than you ran last week” Milo said cryptically.

They started out at the same 11 minute mile pace they had been running all along. Then after running ten minutes Milo had Rick stop and stretch again.

“Here is the deal.” Milo said. “We can stretch the distance and you will get great at running eleven minute miles. Or we can add some speed in and you will use different muscles and, if you find yourself needing to sprint, you will not find yourself locked into running slowly.”

“But I can’t run a mile any faster.” Rick protested.

“You aren’t going to run a mile. You are going to run faster for a minute and then you are going to walk until you can run again.” Milo said.

“How fast should I run?” Rick asked.

“That is the beauty of this stuff. Just keep adding speed until your stride smooths out. If you can’t run a minute then run until you are really breathing hard.” Milo said.

“The how long do I walk?” Rick asked.

“Walk until you think you can run that faster pace for another minute. It might be thirty seconds. It might be five minutes.” Milo said.

“If you take one thing away from today, I want you to figure out how to listen to your body.” Milo finished.

Rick started out, still not seeing how it was going to go. He got up to the eleven minute mile and then slowly started increasing his speed. At first, his stride got choppy as he made his chubby legs move faster. Then, at about the nine minute mile pace Rick’s slicked up and his head stopped bobbing up-and-down.

“This good?” Rick gasped out.

“That is GREAT!” Milo said.

After about forty seconds Rick dropped down to a walk.

“Perfect!” Milo said.

Rick nodded, too gassed to speak.

“Keep walking.” Milo advised. It will help flush your muscles out and get them reoxygenated.

Two minutes later, Rick broke into a run and got to his target pace more quickly than before. This time he was able to go a full minute.

It took him three minutes to regain his breath and get his pulse rate back down.

Rick and Milo continued running, walking, running for the next mile. The segments of running got shorter and the walking got longer, but that was all to the good. Rick was paying attention to his body.

Walking back, Rick said “That wasn’t so bad.”

“Let’s see if you say that tomorrow morning?” Milo said with a smile.

“Hey, Mr Salazar, I could use some advice.” Milo said. His tone and the use of the formal ‘Mr Salazar’ indicated it was a serious matter.

“What is up?” Rick asked.

Milo explained that Farmer Don insisted on paying him for his work. Milo couldn’t figure out what to charge him and was inclined to not charge him, being a neighbor and all.

Rick said, “Let him pay you.”

Milo asked “Why?”

“A few reasons. One is that he wants to stay on your good side. He might have another piece of equipment break and he wants to ensure that you will come when he needs you.” Rick said.

“Another reason is that it will ease his mind. If you give him a bill and he pays it, then it won’t be hanging over his head. You won’t pop up later and ask him for money...money he might not have.” Rick said.

“So, what should I charge him?” Milo asked.

“You might ask him what he would expect to pay in a shop. Then charge him half. If he kicks you can tell him that you don’t have to pay for a shop, and heating and lighting bills. I bet he will go for it.”

Looking at Milo after finishing a set of push-ups, Rick asked...”Something else bothering you?”

“Yeah.” Milo said. “A few days ago you said that money might not be all that useful if things fall apart. I was wondering if there was a way I could get paid in wheat.”

Rick was surprised. He thought that was a fabulous idea.

“Sure! Great idea. What is your hang-up with that?” Rick asked.

“Where would I put it?” Milo asked.

“Same place Farmer Don keeps it. In the elevator.” Rick said. “Don pays a small fee for them to store it. They keep it dry and bug free.”

“You give him a bill. He contacts the elevator and has them write some paperwork transferring title to however many bushels of wheat to you. Then you write ‘Paid in full’ on a copy of the bill and mail it to him. Easy-peasy.”

Farmer Don figured it would have cost him $1000. He contacted the elevator and had $650 worth wheat transferred to a new account in the name of Milo Talon.

When Milo mentioned that they had agreed on half, that is $500, Don pointed out that Milo had done the work in the dark. In effect, Milo had to pay for the lights. Don said he would have paid $500 if Milo had done the work in the day.

After that, Milo started getting texts from people he had never met. They came from as far away as Allegan County, ninety miles away. To save driving, Milo learned to ask for pictures of the damaged equipment. Once or twice a week Milo would drive over to Kelly’s shop, load up the back of his truck and the trailer with tools and materials and head out to a job.

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