Aches and pains and the coming taper

I don’t have a body made for running.  I realize this and I wonder sometimes how I do what I do.

I was born with hips that turned inward.  They turned in so much that I had corrective shoes and a bar to hold my hips outward.  To this day if I’m tired my feet turn inward when I walk.

Most days that I run I am in pain.  It got better after my rest weeks following my half marathon, but as I built up mileage for my upcoming marathon the aches and pains returned.  I know, I am 50 after all and I have only been running for 17 months, but I face the fact daily that moderate pain is something I have to deal with.  At least it is pain I voluntarily inflict on myself, unlike so many people who are in pain that they have no control over.

I say all that to say this.  I HATE WORKOUTS.  I am not one of those runners who run a tempo, steady state, or hill workout and think, “wow, that was fantastic.”  Maybe no one likes workouts, but they hurt me physically.

I have used the heat of the summer to avoid workouts before this marathon.  I know, not a good idea.  Well the weatherman laughed in my face this week as the temperatures in the mid afternoon have been in the high 70’s.  Okay.  My excuses are now gone.  I know what I have to do.  Hmmm…

So yesterday I did a steady state run.  I warmed up one mile and then went into my run.  I probably should have warmed up two miles, but I didn’t.  It didn’t go badly.  I got 3 miles under my belt and only had some slight pain in my inner thigh.  My achilles has been acting up also.

So after the 3 miles under 8:00 pace I stopped for a break.  I went inside my house and drank some water and used the bathroom and went back out.  More pain in my inner thigh.  It was to the point that I could have pushed myself, but what if I really pulled something that would affect my upcoming race; so I stopped.

I know tapering is called one of the hardest parts of training for a marathon, but I’m looking forward to it.  I run so much better after an off day.  I assume tapering will help also.  Tomorrow is 3 weeks until the marathon and so I really only have another week or so of pushing it.

Today, hill workouts.  Tomorrow, running with Neill (@BigBigGeek, and Sunday my long day.  I probably won’t have much time to write this weekend, but I will try to “Hang with the dog” at least one day.  🙂

Have a wonderful (pain free) weekend!!!


Tempo runs and hunger pains

I had a strange sensation last night as I lay in bed with my stomach growling on my 3rd day of my diet (and 3rd day off from running).  The hunger in my stomach was familiar in some way.  Of course I have dieted before and my Lovely Wife and I had both lost 85 lbs.  However I gained 10 lbs back over the past year and so I am doing the diet again over the next few weeks to try to get down a bit for running.

I digress.

As I pondered the fact that the hunger pains were not only familiar, but I also didn’t seem to mind them, I tried to make sense of it all.  Then it hit me.  Of course this is just my aged mind thinking and pondering, but in running, I have had the same feeling.  No, not massive hunger, but forcing my body to do what it did not want to do.  As we trained for our first half marathon, TJ had me doing tempo runs, steady state runs, hill runs and so on.  In doing these (especially tempo runs) I would feel horrible and my body would want me to quit.  I wouldn’t go to the point of hurting myself, but I knew that if I didn’t push myself further than I wanted to go, I would give up almost immediately.  This developed discipline in me that I credit, almost more than the training itself, to my success in my half marathon.  I have written before that running has a lot to do with psychology and now I am adding that running creates discipline (something I have never had).

So last night, as I felt hunger sweep my body and smelled dinner (baked ziti) cooking downstairs, it wasn’t dread or anger I felt, it was almost like an old friend coming to visit.  I understand that this diet won’t last forever and I won’t push myself too far.  I also understand that the hunger is working to improve my running as does a good tempo run. It is all the same discipline working on my behalf.

This is all philosophical, but it really made sense to me last night.  Of course, it could just have been that the hunger made me a bit delirious 🙂

I hate dieting, but I love running.

A new workout to prepare for my first half marathon

Okay, 11 days left until our half marathon and things are getting exciting.  We are working hard at our workouts along with tapering them somewhat so we are fresh for the race.  No hill runs until after the big race (yay), but I had a new experience in my running yesterday.  TJ and I ran together and I did a steady state run.  Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t anything new, but it was new to me.

We started with a warmup mile and then we proceeded to run 4 miles at an average of 7:50 a mile.  This is TJ’s normal pace, but for me it was hard.  By the time I made the 5th mile, I told him that I thought I should stop.  He that I could try one more mile at a cool down rate and then see if I could pick it up after a half mile.  Well, I decided to go with his advice and ran the last mile at an 8:57 pace.  Overall we ran 8:06 which got me a PR for my 10K.

RS got hurt again while running.  He says his foot felt swollen and wisely walked home rather than trying to run on it.  We need to figure out how to keep him healthy so he can continue to run.

Thanks TJ for the help.

I love running.