Sunday, September 01, 2013

Toot Toot Goes the Engine

Sunday, September 1, 2013:

Why is that a delight to a 72-year-old "grownup?"  Running on a trail near the railroad track, I waved as the engine thundered by and the engineer responded with two short toots, the universal greeting.  I waved some more, of course, no doubt grinning ear to ear.  The train rumbled on, eight engines strong, and I was able to run near it, perhaps 50 feet away, for a half mile or so.  I do like trains.  I assume that some of those eight engines were actually being towed to where they were needed, because the train wasn't long enough to require more than two or three on that flat track.

Seven more engines behind
this, plus a nice train

The train was a good start to a great run on the grass trails.  18 miles, heading toward 20 next week.  I did a 17-mile run last week, but this week the weather was better and I felt better and ran better.  I'm a little surprised, because I ran yesterday and did a couple of hours of serious yard work too (hard, sweaty work), but I felt strong today anyway.  I carried water and took five Clif Shot gels along the way, and three salt tablets.  Most of the time I did a run/walk of 20/20, going a little faster toward the end.


(1) The right knee with PFS hurt a little most of the way, but was not a limiting factor;

(2) On both feet, the second toe is in trouble, the toe next to the big toe.  On the left foot the nail is bleeding and bloody underneath, and the right would have bled but I had a band-aid on it because it had already bled from earlier runs.  Huh.  I've previously lost one of my big-toe nails, since grown back, but now I'm sure I'll lose the nail on each of these toes.  I don't recall having trouble with either of these toes before, so why now?  I suppose it's related to all of the trail running that I've been doing, preparing for a marathon that is partly on trails, but why would trail running cause problems specifically with the second toe?  My shoes are plenty big - I wear size 10 ½ dress shoes, and I wear size 12 running shoes, so shoe size should be adequate.  Furthermore, although the trails are hilly, I've been mostly walking down the hills to avoid pounding on joints and bones. This should also avoid jamming my toes into the front of the shoes.

Toes are not a limiting problem - runners can run with toes in terrible shape.  Indeed, one of the blogs that I used to read was titled "Ugly Toes."  I'll deal with the problem, but I wish it wasn't happening because of the possibility of infection.

Despite all my whining, I really did enjoy the run.  I did four loops of different lengths, each starting and ending at the car, where I could refuel with water and gels, and each a little faster than the previous loop:

Miles Time    Pace   Loop
6.05 1:12:33   12:00 1
5.16 1:01:39   11:57 2
4.03 47:51   11:52 3
3.01 33:57   11:17 4
------- ----------   --------
18.3  3:36:00   11:50  Totals

Saturday, August 31:

I had no one to run with this morning with the St Croix Valley runners - everyone was faster than me.  So I ran rather slowly, doing 3.9 miles while the group was doing 5, finishing behind some and ahead of others.  I didn't have my watch, but it felt like I was probably going about 11 minutes per mile.

For the month: 127 miles.

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