Saturday, September 24, 2016

Three More Runs

Since last Saturday's marathon.  Today I went up to the park, joined the SCV runners, and had a nice walk with George, as we were the only two walkers who showed.

Somehow we're never without something to talk about.  4.0 miles in about 1:01:00.

Friday, September 23, 2016:

The Hospital Loop.  So called because this hike takes me past a hospital and then my doctor's office, I finished the 4 miles at a pace of about 13:50.  Plenty good for today.

Two-mile splits:  27:23, 27:57, total 55:20

Tuesday, September 20:

Grocery Run   Lately we three have enjoyed a weekly trip to the organic grocery near the river.  It's a very hilly 6.7-mile hike, with backpacks to carry the groceries.

Today's hike took 3 hours, including the grocery shopping and a bathroom stop or two.  Not fast, but we have a really nice time, and this one was a perfect "recovery run" for me following last Saturday's marathon.

Three More Runs

Since last Saturday's marathon.  Today I went up to the park, joined the SCV runners, and had a nice walk with George, as we were the only two walkers who showed.

Somehow we're never without something to talk about.  4.0 miles in about 1:01:00.

Friday, September 23, 2016:

The Hospital Loop.  So called because this hike takes me past a hospital and then my doctor's office, I finished the 4 miles at a pace of about 13:50.  Plenty good for today.

Two-mile splits:  27:23, 27:57, total 55:20

Tuesday, September 20:

Grocery Run   Lately we three have enjoyed a weekly trip to the organic grocery near the river.  It's about a 6.7-mile hike, with backpacks to carry the groceries.

Today's hike took 3 hours, including the grocery shopping and a bathroom stop or two.  Not fast, but we have a really nice time, and this one was a perfect "recovery run" for me following last Saturday's marathon.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Air Force Marathon Review

Saturday, September 17, 2016:

My 98th marathon is in the books – I finished in 6:38:10, second of three in my age group.  I’d like to do better, but the guy who finished first did it in 4:28, more than two hours faster, which is pretty spry for a guy 75 or older.  Good job Don T.

Before the start
This was a wonderful race.  The Air Force does a great job:  (1) Not once was there vehicle traffic on the same road with us runners; (2) They provided aid stations with water and Gatorade almost every mile; (3) I was never wanting for a porta potty, with two or three almost every mile; (4) There were even enough porta potties and portable bathrooms at the start, and that never happens!; (5) The expo was fabulous; and (6) They did their best to keep us out of harm’s way as a lightning storm passed by early in the morning.

My Race:

I had a great time, talked to quite a few people along the way, including a doctor who was curious about my shirt that says “I’m alive thanks to novel cancer medications.”  Please see http://minnesotadon.com . I talked to a lawyer who was also a cancer survivor, and we chatted mostly about legal cases.  I was glad when the conversation went another direction.  I met a woman whose shirt said “100 Marathon Club.”  Huh.  I didn’t even know such a club existed, but I guess it would, and in fact there are two.  I’ll be eligible soon, if all goes well.  Do I care?

Whining: NONE!  Imagine that - for a whole marathon.  Actually I did slow in the last couple of miles because of a pain on the underside of the bone that bumps out from the left ankle, the lateral malleolus, the bottom of the fibula.  That was a new one for me, so I slowed to avoid an injury.  However, it turns out the pain was from my shoe (good old Brooks Launch) touching that area.  Tied a little too tight, I guess, so I'm not counting it as a potential problem.  No pains in back, knees, or Achilles tendons.  Training paid off!
 
The Marine Corps Marathon:

The weather was a topic of the day, starting with rain and lightning storms.  By race time the sky had mostly cleared and we could see the full moon (was it full today, or is it tomorrow?).  The sky clouded over then, for most of the race, and finally sprinkled a bit in the last few miles.  No big deal.  The wind was a big deal, though, holding us back whenever we faced it, but always cooling us.  Overall I didn’t mind.  I suppose the temperature got up to 75 or 80, but I started dumping a cup of water on my head at each aid station from Mile 8 forward.  I was never too hot.  We were all worried that the lightning would return and the Air Force would make us stop and take shelter.  We did see shelters, but happily passed them all by.
Finished

The race started and ended just outside the famous Air Force Museum.  What a place that is!  We were able to spend a couple of hours there, and I could have spent a week.  It’s huge, monumental, fascinating.  Mostly it’s military aircraft, plus a lot of test vehicles, but there are a few civilian planes including several retired versions of Air Force One.  We have to go home, but I wish we could stay another day just at that enormous museum.  One of the biggest bombers in this country’s nuclear arsenal was the B-52, and it looked small alongside dozens of other planes inside one of the four hangar-style buildings.

The race itself wound in and out of the Wright Patterson Air Force Base at Dayton, OH, so much so that it was almost impossible to drive the course before the race.  We looked at the map, assumed that our car would not be allowed on the race route, and gave up.   I was never far from other runners, however, so I didn’t suffer from not seeing the course ahead of time.


Splits: 43:36 (3 mi), 29:15 (2 mi), 14:18, 14:34, 14:34, 15:10, 28:48, 15:24, 15:41, 14:59, 15:12, 15:31, 15:05, 15:39, 14:53, 15:56, 15:57, 16:03, 15:43, 14:34, 16:42, 17:00, 3:40, total 6:38:10, overall pace 15:11.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Organic Shopping Again

We three walked about 7 miles to the organic grocery again, from our home dropping almost 300 feet to the river and back up, with several wobulations in between.  Hilly, warm and otherwise just lovely today.  We mostly ran on trails, sidewalks, and very quiet streets.  It took us 3:22 to do this route, but we weren’t in a hurry.  In fact, when we got to the grocery store their power was out and they couldn’t let us in, so we went to a nearby bookstore and bought lattes first. The power came back eventually.

Going back home we climbed THE STAIRS, a famous feature of our city, taking the adventurous climber up about 100 feet in about 145 steps, all concrete with steel-pipe railings.  People do the stairs as an exercise program, and today so did we.  As with most climbers, when we got to the top we stopped for a moment to appreciate the superb view of the city and the river.  And to catch our breath!

The leaves are starting to collect on the trails, wherever the wind can’t blow them away.  The trees still look normal, no change in color yet, but they must be a little thinner.  Days are shorter - it’s not quite light at 6:00 am now.  I do so love this time of year, the next month or two.  What a treat to run in cool, dry weather, with the city’s trees putting on their fireworks display.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Long Time No Post

But we have been running.  Sometimes I work for a living, and that's taken time away from blogging lately, but I keep running regardless.  It's one of the best parts of the day and settles me down, calms my stress.

I actually ran 170 miles in August, an unusually high tally, and may have the injury to prove it.  See August 29, below, when I saw the sports doctor about the left Achilles tendon.

Saturday, September 09, 2016:

The girls and I did a half of a 5k (1.55 mi) together, then I did the remainder of a 4.02-mile route at my own pace while they finished the 5k.  Nice time, no whining, they finished just a few minutes ahead of me.

Splits: 25:33 (1.55 mi), 6:40 (0.47 mi), 25:45 (2.0 mi), total 57:58, for 4.02 mi, average pace 14:25, best 12:53 for 2 mi.

Thursday, Sep 08:

To the junior high track and back with my girls, plus a mile on the track.  We explored a bit on the way to the track and back, hustled a little at our own paces on the track itself.  A little of everything..

Five miles in 1:53:21.

Monday, Sep 05:

Nice 6.4-mile loop today.  By myself this time - I can go a little faster that way.  1:35:13, for an overall pace of 14:53.  Not great, but good enough.

Sunday, Sep 04:

Local neighborhoods with my girls, 4.7 miles in 1:53:00.  Or so.

Saturday, Sep 03:

SCV Runners   We had six walkers today - nice time.  A strong 4 miles in about 62 minutes, just a little slower than 15 minutes/mile.  Enjoyable conversation.

Friday, Sep 02:

We three walked across the big highway into the Sanctuary and back home.  Nice time together.  4.5 hours in about 1:30:00.  We didn't really hurry.

Thursday, Sep 01:

Lovely Hike   We three walked & ran from home to a co-op grocery a few miles away.  Total 7.5 miles in 3:49, but we spent a lot of that time goofing around.  Very hilly.

Wednesday, August 31:

We three walked the favorite lake-trail 5k in 52:17.  Nice.

Monday, August 29:

Four miles, and then walked another mile to the sports doctor.  I had hoped that he would tell me not to worry about the strange sensations in the left Achilles tendon, but he did NOT say that.  He thinks there may be an injury, and that it would be in the junction of the bottom of the calf muscles and the top of the Achilles tendon.

He suggested a "rehab" exercise, which I have done but less regularly than he suggested, and a stretch, which I have done a little more regularly.  Here's hoping.  A serious Achilles injury would put me out of the marathon business for a while.

Sunday, Aug 28:

Sixteen Miles At a fairly good pace.  I wasn't trying to go very fast, but the pace turned out to be 15:30 despite several nature breaks and even one wrong turn which must have cost at least a couple of minutes.  No real problem with the left Achilles

Saturday, Aug 27:

My girls and I walked to the organic market and back, with backpacks to carry what we bought.  About seven miles in about 2:30:00.  That might include the time that we spent in the market, plus some strolling around downtown.  Very hilly.  We had a nice time.

Thursday, Aug 25:

Six miles in 1:35:03, pace 15:51.  Hot & slow, coddling the Achilles tendon.  I didn't feel anything there at all, so I cancelled Monday's appointment with the sports doctor.

Later that night I felt twinges in the Achilles in bed, so early the next morning I recaptured that sports doctor appointment.

Wednesday, Aug 24:

4.2 miles in 1:01:36, pace 14:40, striding easy, gentle on the left Achilles tendon.

Monday, Aug 22:

Cool, dry, sunny, breezy   In other words, nearly perfect in every way.  What a day.  A very hilly but enjoyable twelve miles in 3:02:31, for an average pace of 15:13.  It might have been a little more than 12 miles, too, so perhaps a little under 15 minutes/mile, and I wasn't hustling too hard today.


Whining: There was (and later still is) an occasional tightening of a muscle at the point where the calf connects to the top of the left Achilles tendon.  It doesn't hurt, like a pulled muscle or a cramp, it just feels tight for maybe 20 seconds and then loosens up again.  I take it as a warning sign, though.  I've been laying down a lot of miles, and I'll take a day or two off and then cut back some.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Eight Miles at Marathon Pace

With several weeks yet to go before the next marathon, this run was fast enough and entirely without any need for whining.  I feel great.

It was a (mostly) new route on a lovely, cool morning.  If only we could bottle today for the rest of the year, I feel like I could do eight miles every morning.  Actually, I might do twelve tomorrow, at a slightly slower pace, because I have to take Tuesday off for a six-hour infusion anyway.  Tomorrow's weather promises to be almost as good, if I get out there early enough.  I have an idea for a new route, and I'm already looking forward to it.

Splits: 44:48 (3.2 mi), 1:12:08 (4.81 mi), total 1:56:56 for 8.01 mi, pace 14:36.  It'll do.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Striding, Not Walking

Friday, August 19, 2016:

I'm thinking of calling my pace walking "striding" instead of walking.  I really do go about as fast as I can, so "walking" doesn't quite do it justice.

Today I strode almost seven miles, running just a little, mostly across roads at intersections.  Cool morning, after a rain last night, but very humid.  The rain might not be is over yet.  Yesterday I heard the forecaster say that some cooler mornings are ahead of us - that won't break my heart.

Along the new Zephyr Trail

I did feel a twinge in the left Achilles tendon in the late miles today, but it went away.  An Achilles injury would be a show stopper, so I'll certainly be on the alert for it.

One of my closest consultants says that "striding" sounds pretentious.  Hmmm.  What I do isn't race walking (a.k.a. speed walking) because that has rules, but maybe "power walking" or "brisk walking" would be better.  Your opinion is solicited.

Time 1:39:35, 6.9 mi, pace 14:26,

Thu, Aug 18:

A Little More Running.  I strode to the school's 400 m track this morning, strode five laps or so around the track and ran two laps, then strode home.

Total distance was about six miles in about 90 minutes.  Lately I've only run a little, striding most of the time.  I need to run more and stride less, but with a marathon coming up I'm nervous about getting injured, so maybe that will have to wait unto after the 100th marathon in November.

Tue, Aug 16:

Four Miles With My Girls.   After 20 miles yesterday I needed to take it easy today.  A bit hilly, but not too fast.  Very hot.