Riding the run

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As you can see, my run yesterday went really well.  It was a bit different then most of my runs, and here is why…

First, I was messing around with my pebble watch and my iSmoothRun app.  The app allows you to set any info on your screen for your run.  It also allows you to set laps, so as you can see above, I pressed the lap button after the first 1.36 miles and my app showed me the laps after I finished.  Honestly my watch messed up and stopped showing me my time.  I hit a button by accident and couldn’t get it back. I was annoyed, but in a way it helped.  I just ran to feel and ignored my watch.  As you can see my last two miles were under an 8:00 mile and that includes several steep up hill runs.  So I was very pleased when I finished.

On to another reason my run was different.  This one was not good and reminded me of my marathon training.  I had just gotten started running in my new old shoes (the ones I found after I cussed the hotel for stealing them).  Then the bone on my left foot that goes to my big toe started hurting.  This happened on my last longish run with @BigBigGeek a week before my marathon.  So annoying.  I couldn’t tell if I tied my shoe too tight or what was causing the pain.  So I stopped several times to loosen my shoe.  Finally I just kept running and tried not to overdue it.  I kept wondering if I should stop or keep going.  I kept going.

Ultimately it didn’t hurt my pace and as soon as I got home and took off my shoes my foot was fine.  It was very strange as I couldn’t have loosened it any more then I did.

Oh well.  Here’s hoping it doesn’t happen again this afternoon.

All in all things are going really well.  My legs are getting stronger then they have ever been.  Running sometimes feels like I am just riding the run, if that makes sense. It is like I am sitting on these “bionic” legs that are moving me forward.  It is all pretty cool and exciting.

Feet, don’t fail me now…

Tom

 

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33 miles and 20,000 views

 

 

 

 

To begin this post, I wanted to put up a screenshot from my phone from yesterday morning.

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20,000 views.

That may not be a big deal, I don’t honestly know.  For me, however, it is really cool.  Thank you to everyone who looks at my blog, either once, twice or daily.  It means a lot to me.  The best ever at 646 was the day of my marathon.  Good times!

Okay, on to running news.  I got my 6 days in a row in for a total of 33 miles (not bad coming back from an injury).  Yesterday was my sixth.  I went out a bit overconfident and started too fast.  By the 2 mile mark I was shot.  So I walked a few seconds and started up again.  Sort of funny that I was overconfident.  Confidence in running hasn’t been my thing over the past year.  Still my average pace ended at 8:40, which is only about 5 seconds a mile slower then my other days this week.

No more said about ACV this post.  I use it and I like it.  Even the taste is getting tolerable.  I have almost 2 weeks of great progress and I mostly attribute it to that.

Today will be an off day.  I will try to get several miles in walking.  Then tomorrow we are leaving our adult kids at home and going to Chattanooga.  I plan on getting up early each day and running River Walk.   It is an awesome path that was built and goes about 7 or 8 miles along the river.  I hope to run 8 miles each day we are there.  Tomorrow morning I will get up, get a wash in, drive to the park and do my weekly run up the mountain.  Then I will be getting ready to head out of town.

Everyone needs a break and I really enjoy these weekend trips with my Lovely Wife and this time with my oldest son.  We have a great routine and time away is always good.

I hope everyone has a good weekend.  This may be my last post until Monday, but time will tell.

Tom

 

 

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it

This was the news from my chiropractor yesterday.  I wanted to make my hip was well since I hurt it on the steps about 10 days ago.  He examined me, and did an adjustment and at the end said everything looked great.  He thinks my runs up the mountain at our state park have done wonders for me.

So I got home after that and a long day at work.  Not long hour wise, but long difficulty wise.  We moved our phones over from one carrier to another and our internet.  It was so crazy that I didn’t even get to eat lunch.  I got home and drank my apple cider vinegar and headed out for my run.

The beginning was a bit rough.  I had just been adjusted and my hip wasn’t too happy.  But after a couple of miles, my body fell into place and I ran great.  In fact I had to stop to take a phone call from work in the middle of my run and didn’t stop my app, but with that call, I still came in under a 9:00 pace and that was without eating all day.  My fastest mile was at an 8:12 pace.

I’m not going to make a habit out of not eating lunch, but I honestly think the apple cider vinegar gives me energy that I never had before.  Also for the first time in 2 years, I run and feel like I can push it if I want.  I “feel” like a runner and not an old man.

So all is well in body, mind and spirit.

I can’t ask for more than that.

Tom

My Kryptonite

Making running a habit has been the one thing that has kept me consistent and allowed me to do as well as I do running.  Habits are amazing things.  They can be great to get you up and out when you just don’t want to go or feel to tired to get out.  I run 6 days a week and rest/walk on the 7th.

Yesterday my habit worked against me.

A nasty storm came over our neighborhood right as I began heading out to do my workout.  TJ and I debated if we should run or wait as the storm approached.  Finally we decided to run, but stick close to home.  I got a half mile into my run and looked in the direction on my house and a huge bolt of lightening flashed down right in front of me.  I’ll run in any weather – but I will not run with lightening close by.  So I headed home and decided to go out with “The Dog” as I waited to see what the weather would do.

Here is my daily habit:  I run.  I get home.  I go out with the dog.  I drink my Gatorade.  I take a shower.

Essentially, by doing all but the shower, I crashed my day for running.  It was like Kryptonite to Superman.  I sat with my Lovely Wife as I waited to see if the storm would pass.  15/30/45/60 minutes.  Finally it passed, but all my strength was gone.

I see now that by doing my normal post run habit, I unintentionally messed with the fragile balance I have created over the past 18 months.

But I have a blog to write.  I have to overcome.  I psyched myself up after the storm was over and went out to run.  I ran another 1.5 miles, then the Gatorade hit.  I decided to head home to use the bathroom.  I got inside and that was that.  My kryptonite got to me.  My hair was cut.  I had no strength.

Sometimes life doesn’t give you a happy ending for your blog.

Running isn’t everything.  I had a good night watching TV with my kids and Lovely Wife.  I got to sleep early and slept well.  Today I will work,  go to the chiropractor, head home and then another chance to change the world through running. 🙂

The great thing about this sport is that every day is a new day… a new start… a new race… Every day is NEW!

Did running in compression socks make me dizzy?

You might be able to tell from the title of this post that it was a rough run yesterday.  I was so excited to try out my new compression socks that I got from a local retailer and see how they would help my running.  Specifically I want to try and help my legs on long runs to have better endurance.  The sales guy from the local store said these socks are made for running and specifically long distance runs like a marathon.

Here is a list of several things that may have contributed to my difficult run:

  • Hottest day of the week.  Monday it was in the high 70s and Tuesday in the low 70s.  Yesterday it was back up in the high 80s.
  • I didn’t drink as much water as usual.  I drank 64 oz of water rather than my goal of 96 oz.
  • I had a bad night sleep.  I woke up at 1:00 AM and did manage to get back to sleep, but it was not a very restful sleep.
  • Low carb eating.  I was at my lowest weight ever (176 lbs) and have eaten very few carbs.  Usually if I get below 180, I have difficult runs.

That said, I have NEVER felt as I did yesterday.  I ran a bit fast in the beginning which was not good.  Then as I hit the 3 mile mark, I got light headed and felt really strange.  It was almost like I was in a dream as I ran.  I tried to keep going and did for another half mile, but I got weak and really tired, so I gave up on the run at that point.  After I got home and rested, I felt fine.

So it could be a coincidence that I got so dizzy in my new compression socks.  I know others who swear by them and several other bloggers have suggested I try them.  I will say that my legs felt more relaxed and it seemed to me that I didn’t need to put as much energy into my legs in order to run.  At least that was my impression.

So did my compression socks cause this problem or was it circumstantial?

I have a 7 mile run today and I plan to use them again, so I guess I’ll find out the answer… maybe.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Have a great weekend!

8 miles closer to Boston

It was a hot, humid, lonely run yesterday.

I really enjoyed it.

I enjoy climbing mountains.  Well, actually, I enjoy the top of the mountain.  The finish.  The results.

So, to be honest, I didn’t really enjoy the run itself.  I ran well for about 4 miles and then got a phone call.  That really affected my momentum.  After that I ran/walked the rest of the 8 miles, which is unusual for me.  I think it was a combination of the heat, humidity and that I didn’t get my day off this week since I need to take Friday off.  Also, this is a record mileage week/month for me if I get it all in.  So I am trying to be wise and still get my full running in for the week.

To continue where I started, I really like setting a goal and then reaching that goal.  This is probably why I am trying so hard to qualify for Boston this year if at all possible.  It is my ultimate mountain to climb.  It won’t be the end of life as I know it if I don’t achieve the goal I have set, but I will do all that I can do to achieve it.

People ask me why I don’t wait another year to try to qualify.  I guess it is the thrill of doing something few have done in a way that few have tried and succeeding.  It may be my midlife crisis, but it is ultimately cheaper and has many more benefits than a new sports car. 🙂

It is hot and humid today.  At 4:30 AM on my way to work it was near 80 and near 100% humidity.

I can’t wait to climb another mountain this afternoon!

Running into a wall – a great thing!

Yesterday was a good day!

I decided that with my running being difficult, lack of sleep, and staying up late (late for me) to watch “Spirit of the Marathon II” the night before that I should take the day off and rest.  That I did.

I slept 10 hours straight.  If for nothing else, that would be enough to help anyone.  I woke up on my own and the sun was out and I felt renewed.

I got up and soon had a text from TJ asking if we were going to run together – “Yes”, I replied as I thought of the 7 – 9 mile run ahead of me.  I kept myself focused and got ready to go out.  It was going to obviously be cooler at 9:00 in the morning than at 2:00 in the afternoon, but it wasn’t much cooler.

We went out and ran a course through our neighborhood that he runs quite a bit.  It was great running with him and I felt good.  We hit the 2 mile mark and I could already feel myself getting a bit fatigued.  We were not running fast.  In fact he watched our pace and would tell me to slow down at times.  But the heat was beginning to get to me again.  It was so helpful that as I told him I was starting to feel myself getting tired and he said he was feeling it too.  “What, it isn’t just me?” That was a huge relief and kept me going.

By the 4 mile mark I was slowing down.  I knew 9 miles would be out of the question at that point, but I wanted to make it to 7.  I felt again like I hit the wall.  We continued and he slowed to my pace as I slowed down.  We finished back at the house and he ran in to get me some Gatorade as I walked outside a bit.

ALL THAT TO SAY THIS…

I know from the movie and what I have read that everyone hits a wall in a marathon.  Usually around mile 20 your body screams to stop running and give up.  That is the reality of my Spring (I can’t believe it isn’t summer yet) so far.  Everyday I hit a wall.  Everyday my body screams that I cannot go on.  I know I am hydrated and I am eating as well as I can, but I hit that wall over and over again.  My revelation…  that is a GOOD thing.  Each time I get to that point of not being able to continue, but I continue anyway, I am teaching myself to get past that point.  My body is learning how to go beyond the dreaded wall.  Not that I should be stupid and run when I am in trouble, but I can tell usually if this is just a wall or I should stop my run early.  Plus I know that I can run more than 2 or 3 miles and that is when this usually happens.

Another thing I learned the other day from reading an article.  When you run or exercise and it is hot outside, your blood moves toward your skin to circulate and cool you down so you don’t overheat.  That means that less blood is available for your muscles and helping your run.  This is the reason you slow down.  It was already obvious to me that I have slowed quite a bit (about 1 -2 miles a mile) since the heat kicked in, but it really helps knowing why it is happening.

Running with someone else is huge.  Had I run that early run by myself yesterday I might have given in and stopped.  Running with TJ was like running on a treadmill.  I kept going because he kept going.  Also, after the day was mostly gone, I got to run with RS (something I don’t get to do much).  We ran 2 miles together.  It was later and half way through it rained pretty hard.  It felt great.

So I got in my 9 miles.  I felt like I accomplished a huge feat just by making the 7 with TJ.  I felt awesome afterwards.  Then the extra 2 with RS and I went to bed knowing I made my 9 mile goal and all was well with the world (or at least my world).

7 miles and 1 wall this afternoon.  I can’t wait!