My impromptu run

Yesterday’s walk with the dog turned out “different” than I had planned.

I hadn’t run for several days because of my SI joint.  So I decided to walk with the dog to have something to do while walking.  I’m sorry, but walking is boring.  I hate it.  But I have to keep the habit going of getting outside and exercising and when I can’t run, I walk.

After about a quarter mile I noticed I had forgotten my phone so I went back home and then decided to leave the dog home and head out by myself.  I was wearing an old pair of running shoes that I don’t use much anymore, but doesn’t have many miles on it.

I headed out the door and did an impromptu jog.  I slowly jogged up the road and on to my walking route.  I’m talking a jog about 2.5 minutes per mile slower than my normal pace.  I walked some and jogged some.  I thought to myself that this was like my mile 20 in my marathon pace wise.

I really didn’t hurt at all.  I had some stiffness in my SI joint, but it went away fairly quickly.

I ended up running/walking (mostly running) 3 miles.  Once again, it was slow.  Barely faster than a fast walk, but at least I RAN.

So I think I will try to run again today.  Not fast, but just a good easy run.  If I feel pain returning, I’ll stop and walk, but hopefully this pain is working its way out and I can begin my running again.

My plan is to take things slowly right now.  I do have a 10K in two weeks, but I may have to run it as a fun run, even though it is my first 10K race I’ve run.

Congratulations to all the marathoners from this weekend.  I’ve been really busy, but I will catch up on everyones blogs this week.

Hangin’ and walking with The Dog

Got to sleep in today and got up and spent some time with the dog.

The Dog may go walking with me today.

The Dog may go walking with me today.

I’m about to go on my walk.  My hip still hurts a little.  I think I could run on it, but I am taking advice I received on this blog and taking some time off to let it heal.  The dog doesn’t walk well on a leash, but I may just take her with me for company.

Have a great Sunday!

PureFlow running

I took the plunge.

Brooks PureFlow 2 - My new shoes

Brooks PureFlow 2 – My new shoes

These are the first pair of non-Saucony shoes I’ve owned.

Brooks PureFlow 2

TJ, RS and I went to the TrakShak in Birmingham yesterday evening to hear about training runs and events for the Mercedes Marathon in February 2014.  We’ve never really participated in group runs and training runs, so this is new.

While waiting for the event to start, I began trying on shoes.  TJ was a huge help as I have been one sided with Saucony and he has branched out a bit.  I really liked the Brooks PureFlow 2 as soon as I tried it on.  My foot is a little on the wider side and it had plenty of room.  It’s weight isn’t much more than the Saucony Fastwitch shoes I’ve been wearing for some time now and it definitely seems to have more support.

Hopefully this weekend I’ll be wearing them on at least one run.  I walked again yesterday because of my hip.  It is about 90% better, but I really want to give it the time it needs to heal so that I don’t have to interrupt my training for the Vulcan 10K coming up November 2.

The other great thing about the meeting last night was that there was a guy there who has run over 136 marathon and above races and has been running since the 70’s.  Here is his blog.  He is also a physical therapist, so I was able to ask him about my SI joint issues.  He was very helpful and recommended some easy stretches to loosen it up for running.  As with my Chiropractor, he said never stretch right before running.  He did say to stretch as much as I can throughout the day – thus I will.

I hope that things will start to settle down for me.  I really like to run and I am not one who likes to do many other physical activities.  I know that I should probably cross train and do other forms of workouts, but I am not an athlete.  I just want to run.  I don’t mind (but don’t really enjoy) running workouts.  They helped me get my first half done in 1:44 which I thought was great.  But for me running is simple.  Running is fun.  Running is what I want to do.  So that is what I do.

I’ll write about how I like the Brooks.  It really is about time for me to move beyond one brand of shoe.

Thanks for everyone’s ideas and support on my posts over the past few days.

I couldn’t do this without you all!!!

Running maturity – UGH

Sometimes the hardest run is the one that never happens.

I decided not to run yesterday as my hip is not good at all.  I made it to the Chiropractor and that was helpful.  I’d say my pain went down by half after he adjusted me.  So I went home and decided to walk with a thought in the back of my mind that if I warmed up and felt well after a mile or two that I might go ahead and run a little.

That didn’t happen.

I was still in pain.  Someone at work said that it sounds like my SI joint.  It probably is now that I think about it. About 12 years ago I was in so much pain in that same joint that I couldn’t even walk.  So I guess I’ve aggravated it all over again.

Last night I put heat on it and took Ibuprofen.  That seemed to help.  I must say that today it still hurts, but not nearly as bad.  I just have to do the mature thing and not run until it is better.  Sometimes I hate maturity. 🙂

Tonight TJ and I are going to a meeting at a local running store to prepare for our half marathon in February.  This is the same race we ran last year, but we are interested in preparing with a running group.  We live about 35 minutes away, so it is hard sometimes to get out with people, but it is time to do what we have to in order to be able to run with a group.

That is it for today.  I am hoping to run this afternoon, but it is looking doubtful (that whole maturity thing again).  Either way I’ll write about it tomorrow.

I can’t wait for the weekend.  I hope I can run!

9 runs to the Chiropractor

Sometimes I am so stupid.

I know I have issues with my hip.  Fortunately I’ve been to the doctor and there isn’t anything physically wrong with it.

It began hurting about half way through last week.  I had already run about 6 days straight and was going to end up running 9 days, including a trail run.

Yesterday my run (after my day off) was not good.  I thought I was going to run hills or a tempo run.  I got outside and began a slow jog.  After a quarter mile I had horrible pain in my left ankle.  It was so bad I had to immediately stop and limp slowly.  After about 5 steps it got better and I was able to run again – what was that?

I felt good the first mile and then my hip started hurting.  By the middle of the second mile I was in quite a lot of pain.  It was similar to mile 20 of my marathon.

I ran through the pain, which usually works and it lessens.  I couldn’t get it to lesson yesterday.  Even so, my 4 mile run was completed 9:20 pace.

I went home, got my Gatorade and throw the stick with the dog.  I was licking my wounds when I read a post from one of my favorite bloggers RunningToHerDreams.  It really put me in my place.  Go here to read it:

So I got on the phone and made an appointment with my Chiropractor.  I haven’t gone to him lately because by the time I go after work it can be after 4:00 before I get to my run.  That isn’t easy after getting up at 3:30 in the morning.

I guess I have no choice in this.  I will do what I have to.  I need to be able to run without pain and just enjoy running again.  I figured after several weeks off I would be better, but I am worse.  So I am getting help and pushing through.  Believe me when I say that no one wants to live with me if I can’t run. 🙂

Onto good news.  Below is a picture of my Nike app yesterday.  I finally crossed the 2,000 mile mark.  It has only been 19 months, so I am pretty happy.  I need these milestones to keep me going through the rough times.

19 months in the making

19 months in the making

Weekend running and 10K goal

I haven’t yet written about my weekend runs because of life getting in the way and my pondering the 11 year old me yesterday.  By the way, if you haven’t done so, ask yourself what you would say to the younger you with what you know now.  It really is helpful!

Yesterday was my off day and I took it with eagerness.  I ran 9 days in a row and was quite sore.  In fact my hip was really bad, but I walked 3.1 miles yesterday and that seemed to help quite a bit.

So Saturday I ran with my running geek friend (@BigBigGeek) and had a great time.  Realize I didn’t say I had a great run, but that I had a great time.  I think my running streak really was getting to me even though my mileage wasn’t very high.  After the week was over I realized that I ran almost 50% of the mileage I ran in September last week alone, so I might have over done it. 🙂

Anyway, we had a fun run talking the whole time.  I was glad to be the one listening more since by the time we hit the 3 mile mark I was about ready to walk.  Neill is really improving a lot.  It was just a few months ago that our runs would have messed up my pace for the week and now I am pushing to keep up with him!

We finished the 6 miles and I had to head out for weekend errands.  It was really a beautiful day and seriously a lot of fun.

Sunday was another run in the park.  TJ, RS and I ran in the park for about 5 miles.  TJ asked Saturday if I wanted to go there on Sunday morning, so I said sure.  We got there and knowing that he enjoyed the trail run we did right after our marathon (that I had to cut short), I chose to run the trails with my boys.  We got half way through and RS wasn’t feeling well so he walked back to the car on the road and TJ and I ran back on the trails.  I was a bit apprehensive since my achilles hasn’t been doing too great, but it really felt good.  At the end of the trail we still had a half mile to go to make it a total of 5 miles, so we ran up the road and turned back after a quarter mile.  I was exhausted, but in order to learn to push through, I ran as hard as I could back to the car.  TJ measured us running under 6:00 pace at the fastest, which was exciting to me.

Now this week.  TJ and I drove the Vulcan 10K course last weekend and it is going to be fun.  It is pretty flat other than a mile hill that goes up a mountain.  So I am going to try to get my speed up over the next few weeks preparing for the race.  I have 3 weeks to get back into racing form, so it isn’t long.  Between hill runs and tempo runs, I hope to be able to run the 10K under an 8:00 pace.  Actually I hope to hit 7:30/mile.  Time will tell.

Say hi to your 11 year old self for me. 🙂

39 years later, he will be a runner

I got this picture from an old friend of me at 11 years old.

Tom at 11

Tom at 11

As I looked at it, I stared into my own eyes and wonder what I was thinking at that moment.  Of course I was eating cake, so I must have been happy.  🙂

Anyway, if you had asked this boy what his life would be like in 39 years, I wonder what he would have said.  I know he would not have had any idea of the ups and downs he was about to encounter.  He probably would just laugh if you told him he would one day weigh 278 lbs.


Tom at 278 lbs

How would that be possible?  Then tell him that less than 2 years later he would weigh 180 lbs and run his first marathon and I’m sure he would call you crazy.

Running my first marathon

Running my first marathon

There have been so many good things that have happened in my life.  I have wonderful kids and a Lovely Wife.  I have a great job.  I am thankful for everything I have and everything I can do at 50 years old.

39 years ago, I only hoped to have the life I have now.  Things aren’t perfect.  There are good times and bad.  There are ups and downs.

But if you took that 11 year old into a time machine and forwarded him to today, I think he would be pretty excited to have seen all he would see with those 11 year old eyes.

This make me thankful.

…but I wanted to eat pizza!

Yesterday I decided would be an off day… but I wanted to eat pizza last night.

So it wasn’t an off day.

My weight is creeping up on me again.  For some reason even running 4 miles a day it is moving in the wrong direction.  I don’t know why.

Yesterday was pizza night at my house.  Normally the Friday that I get paid we get pizza  for dinner and relax and enjoy.

I got home from work and decided to go run.  It probably wasn’t smart as my body is sore from running all week and yesterday makes 8 days in a row.  But even with not taking a day off this week, I’ll only be at 30 miles, so that isn’t too bad.

I’m off in a few to meet @BigBigGeek for some miles at the state park.  That is always fun.  We are going to run 6 miles which will be my long run for the week.

Question… Does anyone know or have experience on how long it takes to recover from a marathon?  I mean fully recover.  I feel like even almost 4 weeks later I am still a bit stiff in my running.  It could be the heat that has popped back up or the fact I took a few weeks off.

Yesterdays run averaged about 10:00 pace with walking.  At the end I pushed the last quarter mile down to a 6:40 pace just to get myself used to pushing through at the end (something TJ taught me).

Have an awesome weekend!!!

Quick and to the point

Finally a day off.

Today I’m going to take a rest day today from running in preparation for running my long(ish) run with @BigBigGeek tomorrow.

I’m really tired this morning as I haven’t slept well this week and still need to get up early tomorrow to take JR to work.

So… not much to say today.  I know… you thought that day would never come.  🙂

Have a great weekend – and awesome races!


Ordinary running

Ran again yesterday.  7 days in a row.

I was thinking as I ran how “ordinary” my running is.  I don’t mean that in a negative way, but I think I am feeling some rebound from training for a marathon.

I wondered as I trained, how I would feel after it was all over.  Would I have a difficult time adjusting to the fact I wasn’t training anymore, or would I be relieved.  I was happy to find out that after the marathon was all over, I was satisfied.  I didn’t feel upset or unfocused.  I was just living in the fact that I had completed my goal.

Now, almost 4 week later, I think I did have some issues that came up over the past few weeks.  Even as I ran yesterday, I felt a bit “off” thinking that it is all over.  My running right now is ordinary running.  Nothing special.  Nothing to train for.  Nothing but me and the road and my shoes.

I don’t mean that I am not planning some races. We have a 10K in a month and TJ just talked to me about running a few 5K’s.  In February we have the Mercedes Half Marathon and in March the Shamrock Marathon.

Right now though, I am enjoying just running and not really training.  I am enjoying pushing it a bit.  I am enjoying the cooler weather (though the heat index yesterday was 90).  I really am enjoying the no pressure running that I am doing.  But deep inside there is a little sadness.  There is a little loss.  Training for a marathon was hard, especially in the summer.  It was grueling and tiring.  I am surprised though how much of my identity was tied up in that training.  Even now it seems hard to not have that goal to reach out to.  It seems hard to not be in a place of, “Can I actually do this?”

So, I am working on enjoying my ordinary running.

Sometimes life is ordinary.  There is nothing to reach out for.  It is work, home, run, eat and sleep.

If we don’t enjoy the moments, even in the ordinary times, we will never appreciate the marathon of life.

Hmmm.  Now I feel better.  I’m glad I had a chance to write through this thought process.

On to my ordinary life.  I’m glad I am alive, can eat, can run and can sleep in a bed and have a wonderful family.

Ordinary is good.