Monday, October 31, 2016

It Could Be Chilly in Philly

Sunday, Oct 30, 2016:

My next (and 100th) marathon will be there, so I'm doing some cool-weather training.  Well, actually, I don't have a lot of choice, it's already chilly in Minnesota.  43 degrees and cloudy all day long today, just as predicted.  Little or no wind.  Just a matter of dressing properly for it.

Unfortunately I didn't dress properly.  I know how to, but experimented, wearing a heavy half-zip shirt from a running club under a light wind jacket from a recent marathon.  That might have been enough, but neither garment met expectations.  The shirt was polyester, but apparently not the "technical" sort, as it got pretty soggy.  Further, the light wind jacket had no vent in back, so the soggy shirt just got soggier.

I knew this, but didn't think it would matter as much as it did.  The insulation of the upper garments was insufficient, and my upper body felt cooler than I would have liked.  I wasn't cold, really, not shivering, but cool enough that I eventually decided to shorten my 12.9-mile route to 12.1.

As I write this, a day later, it turns out that I should have shortened the route sooner, because the cold that was just beginning to invade my head and throat yesterday is in full force today.

127 miles for the month of October.

Saturday, Oct 20:

SCV Runners, 4 miles in about 60 minutes.  Five of us.  Nice chat with Jim.  No problems.

Friday, Oct 29L

Delightful.  4.1 miles in 57:53.  I love this weather!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

A Dark & Gloomy Morning

Wednesday, Oct 26, 2016:

Perfect for running.  Today’s temperature was about 45 degrees, all day long, with just a little wind.  It rained early, then let up about 11 am, so I took off.  I did almost the same run as last Sunday, adding a tenth of a mile to make it an even 8 miles.  This is a nice route, providing potential bathroom breaks at a park, a bar, and our church.  Finished in 1:59:19, for a pace mighty close to 15 minutes/mile.  A little running, but not much, and I think I strode a little slower than Sunday, hence the slightly slower pace.

Ready for a little cold rain

My back bothered a little after a few miles, on the left side, in the ribs and definitely not the spine.  Muscular, I’m sure, lack of “core strength.”  This happens from time to time.  After the 100th marathon in Philly I’m going to start a different training regimen and get after that core strength issue.

Later, I noticed that the outside bottom of my left foot hurt a little as I walked around stocking-footed in the house.  Hopefully that's just a temporary thing.

Monday, Oct 24:

Walk to the Market.  Once a week, lately, we three walk to the local organic grocery market, about a 7 mile round trip.  We each wear a backpack, and we carry the groceries back up the hill and home.  The trip includes a 155-step outdoor staircase, rising 100 feet, very good cross training!

In all, the elevation change between our home and the market is about 300 feet.  We don’t go especially fast, but it’s good training anyway.  In the Des Moines Marathon I found myself maintaining speed up the hills, almost as if they weren’t there.

Sunday, Oct 23:

Big Lake.  No problems.  7.9 miles in 1:55:37, for a pace of 14:38.  It’ll do.

Saturday, Oct 22:

SCV Runners & walkers, four miles with George n about 61 minutes.

Friday, Oct 21:

Hospital Loop.  Four miles in 59:59.  Huh.

Tuesday, Oct 18:

Walk to the Market, 7 miles.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Des Moines Marathon Review

Sunday, October 16, 2016:

They don't get any better than this.  I run & walk near the back of the pack, where runner support sometimes fails, but I have never felt more supported than in this marathon.  Volunteers on bikes came by frequently, asking whether I needed anything, I always said no, but I think they had a lot of stuff in their little bike baskets, like water, food, petroleum jelly, salt, whatever.

Picking up bib

My Marathon:
This was my 99th marathon, and I finished in 6:32:17, third of three in my age group.  The other guys were LOTS faster, which is always nice - means that it wouldn't have done any good for me to try a little harder.

This might have been a time that I actually could have gone a little faster, though.  I finished the last 10k just one minute slower than the first 10k.  In fact the last 9 miles were all faster than the average pace per mile in the race.  In fact every mile split that didn't include a nature break was under the 14:59 average pace, and this race included some hills.

At the start
Best of all, I feel great!  Nothing hurts.  Back, knee, Achilles' tendon, all are fine.  Muscles are a little stiff, but that's probably because I ran a marathon!  I'll be walking & running again in a day or two.

Six Clif Shot gels along the way, about that many salt tablets, and at least one magnesium capsule.  No cramps, no sign of cramps.  Yay!

The Des Moines Marathon:

These folks have the marathon figured out.  It's entirely on trails or streets that are closed to traffic.  We went around Iowa's most-visited lake (Gray's Lake), once around the 400-meter outdoor track at Drake University, and around the gold-domed Iowa State Capitol building.

With newfound friend from Two Harbors MN
There are a couple of hills, but this is not a “challenging” race course.  Middling between flat and challenging.

I have never felt more supported in a marathon.  I didn’t look at the map to see whether aid stations were planned for every mile, but it seemed that there was one about that often, and I drank at least a little at each one.  Because of the warm weather I carried water, but barely used it and could easily have gotten by without it.

Des Moines is a very nice town.  The course took us through neighborhoods with families out watching the silent parade go by.  I got to high-five quite a few kids and joke with people along the way.
Finished!  Don has yet to pick up his medal

I would definitely do this marathon again, and in fact we very well might.  Stay tuned.

As an aside, we stayed at the Residence Inn Downtown Des Moines, and were just delighted.  Easy walking distance to the race start and finish.  Quite new, very modern, and clean. And they didn’t pay me to say that.  I never talk about the hotel, but this one is worth the mention.

Splits: 13:41, 30:18 (2 mi), 13:37, 14:38, 44:50 (3 mi), 15:28, 18:14 (major nature break), 28:51 (2 mi), 14:44, 14:39, 29:47 (2 mi), 16:17, 14:35, 14:51, 14:54, 14:37, 44:54 (3 mi w hills), 14:24, 14:00, 3:59 (0.22 mi), total 6:32:17.

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Fall Is My Favorite Season

Monday, October 3, 2016:

We flagged down a passing bike rider
who seemed pleased to take this photo
The old Woodbury Runners Group came out of retirement for one last hurrah.  Seven of us.  We split into three groups, with Rich and myself going together for one loop around Carver Lake and a bit more.  Very nice to connect with Rich again.  Need to do that more often.  Hope to see Scott at the Saturday morning group that I run (or walk) with.

Sunday, October 2:

Adventure   Of sorts.  I found a new and safer way to cross the diagonal highway, taking me from the Post Office to the High School.  I chose to cut through the High School grounds, instead of taking the planned route around it.  Fences around the school's construction zones redirected me, however, and I ended up going around it anyway, but on the wrong (long) side.

Actually it was quite enjoyable.  I saw kids playing baseball, soccer, volleyball, and sports I didn't even recognize this lovely Sunday afternoon. Lots of proud parents too, and it looked like maybe more than a few grandparents.

I lost track of the distance, because of the detour, but I think I went about 15 minutes per mile, and I know the time was 2:16:17, so I'm saying that I went 9 miles.  No problems, no whining.

Saturday, October 1:

Nice Walk   These are the days that I will remember throughout the winter.  Cool, dry, and with the trees entertaining us with their colorful fall plumage.  We had a very nice speedy walk, Karon and I today, going 3.7 miles in just under an hour.

Friday, September 30:

Uneventful Hospital Loop Four miles takes me past the hospital and my doctor’s office.  About 56 minutes, for a pace of about 14 minutes/mile.

Tuesday, September 27:

Another Grocery Run.  6.7 miles or so to the organic grocery.  We shopped and backpacked the food back home, stopping at another grocery on the way.  The hike took about 2:45:00, but that includes the time at the stores and several other stops.  A very nice hike.

Monday, September 26:

Long-Sleeve Shirt Day   And how.  The temperature wasn’t too bad, but  the wind was 22 mph gusting to 29.  For once I was glad every time the sun came out.  4.1 miles in 1:03:57, for a pace of 15:36.  There are 10 stoplights on the route that I took today, and I waited for several , so I’m happy with the time.

Sunday, September 25:

Nice 8-mile walk/run in 1:57:07, for a pace of 14:38.