Thursday, August 31, 2006

Tue 2006 Aug 31, 2.5 mi, 59 deg

Legion loop once, 2.5 miles; 20:58, pace 8:23. Could have sworn it was a sub-8 pace, but then again it actually felt pretty good. What a beautiful morning, cool and dry, bright sun, clear sky, placid lake. Makes a person want to run! Life is good. I felt just a little tired yet from last night's run, but no pains. Next runs: the 2-mile Buckshot race, then on Monday the very important Victory 10k, my 10th Grand Prix race. Eat well but not a lot. Carb up a little Sunday night.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Wed 2006 Aug 30, 6.2 mi run, 76 deg

Woodbury Runners 6.2 mile route; 50:26, pace 8:08. Started out at a pace of about 8:20, so the last two miles must have been sub-8. I started early, thinking the guys would catch up. I ran the full route, but they still didn't catch me. First across was RC, then MS & P. I felt oddly clumsy during this run, though the pace was plenty hot for the temp and dew point (60). A little smoother toward the end, especially the last downhill mile. Left knee is still bothering just a little, but not during the run. Left big toe is acting up a little too - is the nail finally going to fall off?

Tue 2006 Aug 29, 6.0 mile run, 59 deg

32nd 33rd & Legion 6 mi route; 48:23, pace 8:04. Not bad for two days after a 20 miler, and this route is somewhat hilly. No pains. Nice cool morning, dew point 52! I sprinted the last 0.2, felt good.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Sun 2006 Aug 27, 20.3-mile run, 67 deg

RR, 96, I-94, Neal, Legion 20.3-miler, 3:01:40, pace 8:57. Not blazing fast! But good enough for this difficult route. I love this route, because of the varied footing and scenery, and the major hills. About six miles are alongside a railroad track, on a little two-rut service road. It's a mixed blessing, with the rut nearest the track fairly clear of weeds but littered with 2-inch rocks which fall down from the track bed. The other rut is mostly clear of rocks but weedy against the legs. Both ruts slow me down, but I love it nevertheless. A train came by as I ran, rattling past so close I could have touched it, making a wind (on a windless day) that nearly took my visor off. Some of this part was in dense fog today. The remainder of the route is on paved roads and trails, hilly and without a lot of shade. The sun was relentless. The temp ranged from 61 to 73, but felt hotter; my face feels toasted afterward even though it was already tan. Dew point was 61, accounting for the fog. I ran every hill, slowing to a walk only to take water every two miles or so. Took four Clif Shot gels too, two with caffeine. Took no salt this time. I feel great now, afterward, just tired muscles and no pain. The left knee hurt a little at the start, but that went away. No pains! Stomach OK so far; I did try to relax my gut muscles during the run from time to time.

My stomach wasn’t upset after this run like it often is. Why is that? Some possible reasons: 1) I didn’t have any food for over 10 hours before the run; 2) I didn’t eat anything for at least an hour after the run; 3) I didn’t even drink a lot immediately after; 4) I did drink plenty during the run.

My friend & competitor LS ran an excellent time in yesterday's Rochester Half Marathon. Good for him! About 16 seconds faster than my fastest HM this year. I have very mixed feelings about missing the race, but I sure did enjoy my grandson yesterday.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Sat 2006 Aug 26, 7:00 am, 61 deg

St Croix Valley runners 8k loop, 42:09, pace 8:29. Gentle pace, ran mostly w WM, following CM and also sometimes RB, who was having some trouble with glutes and went down to a walk several times. Also CA, RL, DM, & GV, & of course my two sweeties. Cool enough, even though very humid. Saw my breath as I ran. Wished I was running the Rochester HM, but then again I'm sort of glad that I didn't have to do it. And I sure like spending some time with my sweet grandson. What a doll. No pains at all today. I'm still having a little trouble with the left knee, but not while running. That's a good thing. Looks like our regular course will have to change for a while, due to road construction, possibly as soon as next week. Guys are talking about another route using Manning and McCusick roads. We'll see. I prefer a different route, starting in Croixwood and looping around Long Lake, but for some reason GV likes to go north and I think he deserves to be treated as the leader of the group.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Thursday 2006 Aug 24, 9:00 am run, 66 deg

LE Ave, 33rd, 30th, & Legion 7.1 mi in 58:26, pace 8:14. This actually felt as difficult as last night's 7:38 pace. I think that's because I'm short of carbs; last night's dinner after the hard run was long on steak and short on pasta and fruit. Could the shoes make a difference too? Last night I ran in my newest Brooks Burn 3 shoes, to test them out, but today I used an older pair of the same model. These squeak a little; could that squeak use up some energy? If so, they'd be fine to train in but I'll stick to the new ones for races. Would have anyway. Right knee pain briefly while running on a left shoulder with some slant. Went away. Feel great now. Muggy morning, dew point 63, but every day with running in it is beautiful.

I've decided to skip the Rochester Half Marathon. Number one son is bringing his wife and my grandson for the CH wedding on Saturday, and I'd rather spend more time with that sweet little grandson than three hours driving and three more at the race. May my friend and competitor LS run like the wind. If he can do it, he deserves to win the Grand Prix. I'll be back for Victory and TCM.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

2006 Aug 23, 6:00 pm run, 73 deg

Woodbury Runners 5.8 mi in 44:15, pace 7:38. Wow. I'm surprised at this pace, sure didn't intend (or need) to run so fast. I started out setting the pace for the group, along with my friend JG, and I thought the pace was fairly modest. SP later told me that his GPS indicated a starting pace of 7:30. It did feel fast to me later, as we ran up hills, but this was a strong run for me, perhaps the fastest I've ever run this route, and pretty much unintentional. It felt good, and I hope it portends a good run in Rochester. I did have a Clif bar with caffeine 2.5 hours before the run. No pains of any kind. Good stretches afterward, and another Clif bar.

I'm wondering about the Minnesota Grand Prix. Even if I am lucky enough to win my age group, is that modest accomplishment worth the time, effort, and stomach acid? I feel nervous for days before a GP race, and I feel down when I don't perform well. Do the "up" feelings from a good run compensate for that? In the full spectrum of human accomplishments, how important is it to earn an age-group Grand Prix award at the MDRA annual meeting? It sure isn't the Olympics. I've heard that my friend and competitor LS was green after the Hennepin Lake race, and I know that he virtually collapsed. Is it even possible for me to give that much, and do I want to? I almost hope he wins; he seems to need it worse than I do. Almost. All that said, however, I've done my best for nine races now, and I'll do my best for three more. Let the chips fall where they will.

2006 Aug 22, early morning, 60 degrees

First on-line running log entry. Will there be more? We will see ...

Running objectives:

  • Enjoy running as a physical and spiritual activity;
  • Enjoy the health benefits of running, especially as it strengthens bones and the immune system;
  • Train to be always ready for a marathon;
  • Run the 2006 Minnesota Grand Prix races and do my best in my age group.

Mendel Ave 4-miler in 32:36, pace 8:09. I meant to have an easy run, but as often happens ran faster than intended. Need to run 30 sec/min faster than this for the Rochester half marathon this Saturday, though. Uffda. But this pace wasn't uncomfortable. No slowing for hills. Slight pain in right knee while running, symmetrically the same place as in the left knee (outside, well below the kneecap, since Tartan Terrible race). Left knee pain seems less the last two days, none while running.