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Showing posts from March, 2011

Not as bad as I'd feared...

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I you know me very well you know one thing. I am the world’s most easily worried human. Give me just a glimmer of the possibility of something bad and my crazy imagination will run with it. You can imagine what’s been running through my brain since yesterday’s run. It’s been extremely painful to walk, put on or take off shoes, basically painful to do anything involving my right foot. My brain had come up with plenty of horrible possibilities. Sometimes I wonder why I listen to myself. The only bad think I hadn’t considered was amputation!! Of course my brain never came up with a scenario where things were fairly okay and it was a minor injury, not my brain. Well, this afternoon I visited my doctor to have her take a look and give me the bad news. Of course first up was a series of three x-rays. I’ve never had a foot x-rayed. This cannot end well. They would only do x-rays if something’s VERY wrong, so says my brain. The doctor looked at the x-rays in the room with me for a couple minut…

Pacing strategy & race schedule changes...

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Today I did my second long run of the week, first time I’ve ever done that. Friday I ran 12.02 miles, today it was 14.0. As I said on Thursday, this week was a struggle for me, I just couldn’t get into my runs for the first part of the week. That even led to me skipping a 7 mile Tempo Run Thursday. Friday my mojo came back! After work I headed off to 24 Hour Fitness for a treadmill run as it has for some reason turned back to winter. My training plan called for 5 miles, but I planned on 6 to make up at least one of the miles missed the day before. Well, once I got started I fell into a groove and made up all of the miles! 12.02 it was. Saturday was a day off, and today’s plan was 14 miles using the pacing plan that they use for pace groups at the Wickedly Fast Half Marathon. I plan to join the 1:45 group so I’m using their basic pacing plan for the next few weeks and working my time down a little at a time. Today’s goal pace was 9:40, so I set up the plan accordingly. Now as we all kn…

How far will I run in 9 hours 11 minutes?

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First off, I woke up this morning feeling great. I think I've got my mojo back! I'm looking forward to kicking ass on my run after work today! I've also settled on a new challenge. The Patriots' Run in Olathe, KS. This race is all about honoring those that were lost on 9/11/01 and those that risked their own lives to save others. The race is a 1 mile course at the Great Mall in Olathe, but it is anything but a 1 mile race! It is 9 hours 11 minutes long. You can run as much or as little as you want during that time. I've lined up my new Ultra partner Jill to do it with me, and I've gotten some solid "maybe" and "probably" from others. I'm hoping to line up people to run with us. However much they want. But Jill and I will be running to see how far we can get. I'm also going to try to get some folks to volunteer to work a permanent aid station for us. As I said, it's only a 1 mile course, so they can set up somewhere and we will ha…

Ugh...

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I haven't posted in a few days because I honestly just haven't felt like doing it. In fact, I haven't felt like doing anything. For the last week or so I've just had no energy all day long. I've been ready to go to bed around 7 or so every night this week which is very unlike me. Don't worry, I've still been forcing my runs in, but I haven't been enjoying them. Sadly, I haven't been enjoying anything. I'm pretty sure the ever-changing weather we're having right now along with my races in the cold and rain last Saturday have my body fighting off some sort of illness. I hope it goes away soon before I really get sick. This typically is how I feel when I'm fighting something off. Lethargic and lackadaisical. I just can't get my heart into anything. My mind wants to run, to work out, to go to yoga and karate, but my heart just isn't in it. I know the Wickedly Fast Half Marathon is coming up in just a few weeks, so I've managed to…

An interesting mileage target today…

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My legs this morning were still just a little tired, but felt pretty good for the most part so I was good to go for my targeted 13.73 miles for today. Why such a specific mileage you might ask. Well, good question. Let’s run through a math lesson real quick: In 2010 (365 days), I ran a total of 709.16 Half of 709.16 is 354.58 Prior to today my MTD was at 340.85 340.85 + 13.73 = 354.58 So if I hit my target of 13.73 miles today I would be at half of last year’s total in only 79 days of 2011 Well, it was a quality goal, but of course it wasn’t going to come easy like I hoped. Why is it that when you target a milestone like that everything seems to go wrong? Maybe it’s mental, maybe it’s Murphy’s Law, who knows. This morning I headed off to 24 Hour Fitness to hit the treadmill to get in my miles. I wanted to use the treadmill today because I thought using it to keep my speed relatively low would help my legs after yesterday’s races. My legs did get tired, but that wasn’t the main problem. I wo…

My first race award!!!

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Today was my "double header" in Manhattan, KS. It was a pretty cold morning, 44° at the start of the first run. In fact, it was so cold that I decided to keep my warm up pants and hooded sweatshirt on over my shorts and sleeveless Good Guys vs Bad Girls shirt. My wife & mother-in-law joined me on my trip out there, it's about a 2 hour drive from our house to the race. At first I intended the Aggieville St. Pat's 2 Mile Fun Run to be a nice, easy paced warm up run, but then last night I was looking at last year's results. The website said awards would go to the top 10 in each age group and last year 10th was 16:32.5, that's definitely doable, so I decided to run it hard and see if I could get in the top 10. It was a nice run starting in Aggieville, going around the park and back up into Aggieville. I started up front with the fast people so they could help me push my pace. They blew the horn and off we went. I tried not to look at my watch much, but I coul…

Speedwork & a weekend to look forward to...

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WOW!! It's been a long time since I worked on speed like that! In fact, the last time I had a run with a average pace lower was my last 5k on October 9, '10 (7:59 pace). This morning training called for me to really start ramping up my speed. My target of 1:45 for the Wickedly Fast Half Marathon is an average pace of 8:00 so I really need to build up a lot of speed between now and then. This morning was a 6 mile Speedwork Run: 1 mile @ 9:401 mile @ 8:001/2 mile @ 9:401 mile @ 8:001/2 mile @ 9:401 mile @ 8:001 mile @ 9:40In total it was 6 miles in 53:07 with an average pace of 8:50. It actually felt really good and I felt strong throughout. I expected to really struggle through it being my first run of that speed in so long and my first Speedwork Run in my Vibrams, but that just wasn't the case. In fact, I think the Vibrams really helped a lot. They really force you to maintain better form and posture even in a tough run. Normally in the past I have had a tendency to slouch …

Weight Loss vs Health & Why I love distance running...

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This morning I had another very nice 4 mile Easy Run at a 9:40 pace in my VFFs. It was a good run and it is nice to be back to running in the morning before work. I don't really feel like focusing on that in this post. I've had a few things on my mind the last few days that I want to get off my chest. The first is just a thought about what makes distance running so much, the other is me climbing up on my soap box about weight loss.

First for the distance running. I have come to truly love distance running. By distance I mean beyond the 10 mile mark. I've been thinking the last couple runs about why I love it so much. Most sports require some sort of skill. In football you need to be able to throw or catch a football well, run routes, etc. In baseball you need to have the hand-eye coordination to hit a ball moving at close to 100 mph with a wood bat, and again, catch and throw a football well. In basketball you need to be able to dunk or shoot a 3-pointer. Well, I could go …

Back to training...

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Today is a new day. I've got one of my biggest goals for the year behind me having completed my first full marathon, now it's time to move to my next big goal. The next goal on the list is a sub-2 hour half marathon. My first (and so far only) half was 2:05:29, so technically I only need to cut 5 1/2 minutes off that time. Of course, you've probably noticed that I like to be ambitious with my goals, so I'm joining a 1:45 pace group which would cut about 20 minutes off my time and get em well under my 2 hour goal. I think this is reasonable and I started my training today with a 1:45 goal (8:00 pace) in mind. Including this week, I have 5 weeks to prepare, which I believe will be about perfect. I will be running the Wickedly Fast Half Marathon associated with the Oz Marathon in Olathe, KS on 4/16. This was also the race that last year I ran my first 5k at, so it holds a special place in my heart. The course also runs by my mother-in-law's house, which is cool. It st…

Wrapping up the Napa Valley Marathon posts...

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I wanted to use my last rest day before half marathon training starts to put a wrap on my Napa Valley Marathon stuff. First of all, the official results put me at 1184th out of 2400, so I finished in the top half!! Not bad considering it was my first and the race was a Boston and Olympic Trial Qualifier and an RRCA Championship. Also, if any of you read the Runner's World article that led me to this race saw that they have some cool stuff for you. I thought I'd share with you some of the stuff I got at the race.
First, the freebies:
          

The end of Recovery Week...

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Well, it's now been 7 days since the Napa Valley Marathon. I have to go back to work tomorrow. I think I'm mostly recovered from the race now. Of course, my big toes disagree! Both of my big toes' toenails are a little bruised and gross, and they hurt quite a bit, but not horrible. My legs are still improving. So tomorrow is a rest day then it's back in the game for me! On Tuesday I start preparing for the Wickedly Fast Half Marathon on 4/16. Hopefully it is well named, I'm joining a 1:45 pace group and that would cut 20 minutes off my time from the first/last one. I'm pretty sure I can do it, but if I'm going to it's going to take some discipline. I need to get on my training starting Tuesday and I definitely need to get back to eating better. Over the last week I haven't run much (16.11 miles in 3 runs with a max of 6.68 miles today), I haven't done much else (1 yoga class), and I have eaten WAY too much of WAY too many of the wrong things. Bu…

A special request for support...

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This is the first time I've used this blog to ask for donations, but in this situation I feel it is warranted. As many of you probably know, National MS Awareness week is March 14-20. This is a disease that is debilitating and has effected the lives of many many people. One of those people is my wife's aunt Annie. Annie is one of the greatest people you'll ever meet. She's had MS for quite some time, but her wheelchair doesn't slow down her spirit. She is always outgoing and excited, she's more fun than most anyone I know. She has been very supportive of me during the last year+ as I've worked to become a runner. Unfortunately, MS keeps her from being able to run herself. Imagine if MS took away your ability to run. Every year she does the MS Walk in Topeka, KS in her chair with her family walking along side and raises money to help the fight against MS. I feel that as great as she has been to me since I joined the family and as supportive as she has been o…

First run since the marathon and my new "shoes"...

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Well, it took a few days for my legs to feel good enough to get in a run again. Plus this afternoon I bought my new "shoes"!! I treated myself to some Vibram Bikilas!! My shoes have gotten closer and closer to the minimalist shoes so this seemed like the next logical step. They are certainly a big change. They feel great, I wore them all afternoon as we went around town doing various errands so my feet could get used to them before I ran in them. I've been wearing Injinji toe socks for a while now so having something between my toes didn't bother me at all. I bought them at Gary Gribble's Running Sports here in town and I tried on these and the KSOs. I liked both a lot, but the Bikilas just felt more natural, the toes on them are more flexible which allows more natural movement. So I went with them over the KSO, there was enough of a difference to justify the extra $15.



As I said before, my legs have been a little shaky since Sunday's Napa Valley Marathon. Ma…

Napa Valley Marathon Race Report...

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It's now official and undeniable, I AM A MARATHONER!! It was an interesting ride...

The Napa Valley Marathon is a point-to-point course, so I had to be at Vintage High School (the finish point) at 5:00 am where they then bused us up to the start line in Calistoga. Well, to get there on time we had to leave at 4:15, so I was up at 3:45. It wasn't too bad, I went to sleep at about 8:45 last night, so I got about the normal amount of sleep, the time were just a little shifted. I was gladly surprised by how well I slept, normally the night before a race I don't sleep well at all.

We woke up to rain. Not the rain I think of in March in Kansas, it was a steady but very light rain. In fact, it was so warm that I left the warm up pants and jacket in my NVM backpack that they took back to the finish line for us. I was thrilled that I wasn't going to have to wear the extra clothes. I wore my normal Long Run clothes, didn't want to try anything new the day of this race. I had…

It's almost time...

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I've run 350.22 miles since December 13th training for this, I've traveled from Kansas to California, I've mentally, emotionally and physically prepared myself. I'm ready. There's just not much to say now, the only thing left to to try to get a good night's sleep and get up at 3:50 tomorrow morning to get there on time and run it. So far I've been so glad that I chose the Napa Valley Marathon for my first. This has been great. It's obviously a pretty area, the weather's been good, the people have been GREAT, the gifts and the merchandise available has been great. It's been awesome. Like I said, there's nothing left but to do it. It's going to be great.

A "little" challenge, and other musings...

So the gauntlet has been thrown down. The challenge has been made. The goal is set and I have a TON of work to do! What am I talking about, well, I need a goal to remain focused and one was placed right in front of me yesterday. A new friend (and fellow runner) on Facebook and I were talking about the annual Brew To Brew race from Boulevard Brewery in Kansas City, MO to the Free State Brewery in Lawrence, KS. We both said that we had considered running it either solo or as a relay at some point in the future. Well, yesterday she came back with the challenge. She said that if I would commit to running it solo in 2012 she would too. If you know me, you know I like a challenge. I quickly told her challenge accepted. Now I am just 3 days away from my first EVER marathon and now I am faced with the challenge of running a 44 mile race in April of 2012. So I've got just a little over a year to get there. To this point my longest run ever is a pair of 20 milers. I'm confident that I&#…

Last Kansas run before the big day...

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This morning was my last run in the state of Kansas before I head off to California for the Napa Valley Marathon. We leave the day after tomorrow. Of course, taper continues, so it was a nice, easy 5k this morning before work. It's still frustrating to have these short runs, but it's all for the greater good. I feel good, prepared, ready, focused. I got some great running related books from the library to read on the trip. I'm not much of a reader, but I'll need something on the plane and on layovers. Last night I started reading The Runner's Guide To The Meaning Of Life by Ambry Burfoot. It is awesome!! It has some great insights into not only running, but also life in general. I may well have this done before we even leave, but that's okay, I have several others. Maybe I can get back into reading if I read books about running!!

Also, yesterday I received my shirt for the Good Guys Vs Bad Girls Running Competition on Facebook! I love the shirt and I'm exci…