A Surprisingly Quick 8.0 Miler – Runlog 8-31-18

Today was the last day of August and I needed 8.0 miles to make 150 miles for the month. I wasn’t really sure if I wanted to run that far or not this morning and I was still feeling a little off from the other day. So I figured that I would go ahead and plug along and see how things went.

Fortunately, Mother Nature cooperated and provided me another of those Top 10 days. You know temps in the mid 60’s, a light breeze and bright sunshine. Well that part isn’t perfect for running, but it is pretty great for the soul. 😉

I started pretty slowly, but I was listening to music and when my intro song was over and I got into the running music, without really thinking about it, I picked up the pace. I got into a comfortably not quite hard, but a faster than normal run.

Surprisingly, even though I started out unsure of how well I would run this morning, I was able to keep a nice for me pace throughout the run. Although I do think that taking yesterday off from doing much of anything probably helped a lot too.

Once I got down on the flats, my body woke up, relaxed and just went into the music. Since school has started, traffic has gone down a bit, which was nice, except for the jerk in the black pickup down on Tiffany who decided it would be fun to scare the shit out of the runner. He wasn’t really that close, but he was definitely over the centerline coming up behind me. Seeing that black truck’s hood suddenly right beside me, startled me just a bit.

Also usually I don’t have the music going and at least have a little warning of the arsehole being behind me. Just one of the reasons why I don’t like running with music on the roads, but…at the same time I also run better with the music and I sort of needed it today.

I muttered a few choice epitaphs about the arsehole and got my focus back on maintaining my effort level. Which I did up to Goodhue, where I took my time to turn and then I purposely picked up the effort a notch and proceeded to get my pace a little faster. Not 10K race pace, but a nice comfortably hard effort level that I felt good at, but it wasn’t enough stop me from doing the 8.0 miles I wanted this morning.

Stevens Hill crushed me as usual, but I was able to pick the pace back up when I got to the tar.

I did this run in the Grasse Roads and had zero issues with the shoes. They just felt comfortable and let me run. Although they are not my “go fast” shoes, I did set a 2018 10K distance PR, (in the middle of an 8.0 mile run) which really surprised me, especially since I wasn’t attempting to do anything like that when I started.

Overall a very good run, that gives me a little more confidence that I am heading in the right direction for me in my training. Now to do a few more weeks and maybe head up to Newport on September 8th to do a 5K back in my old home town. Who knows maybe I will even see some people I know from back in the day, that would be kind of nice.

Yeah, I made that 150 miles for August.

Reebok Floatride RunFast – 50 Mile Review

Sometimes all the comments online, blog reviews and site reviews of a pair of running shoes get you all hyped up about wanting to get a pair. No, I am not talking about the Nike VaporFly 4% (can’t justify the ROI for an old slower runner like me), instead I am talking about the Reebok Floatride Run Fast, which has gotten a LOT of good words spoken about them online lately.

Good enough that when Mary told me to order a pair of whatever shoes I wanted (let’s not get stoopid here) as my birthday present, without a lot of thought going into the decision, I decided to go with the RunFasts. Continue reading “Reebok Floatride RunFast – 50 Mile Review”

Headed Inside for Some Treadmill Time – RunLog 8-29-18

This morning was just too damn hot and humid for ME to run safely outside. One thing I have noticed about getting into my sixties is my tolerance for temperature extremes (hot or cold) is much lower than it used to be. That IS part of my aging process and I have to pay attention to it, if I want to avoid found on the side of the road dead someday.

So I do, since I plan to keep boring people to death, with this blog for many more years to come.

Which meant that a bout on the treadmill was in order. Actually I am one those crazy people who do like the treadmill. I don’t have to think on it too much, I just have to keep up and every so often change the speed or incline. An added plus is that I can zone out to the music, without worrying about getting run over. 🙂

Today was sort of a recovery day, while I didn’t really run that fast yesterday or last night at Quarry Road, in the heat I did push the old body pretty good, so I wanted to take it easy this morning. Something on the lines of 30:00 minutes or so.

One thing that I did different is set the treadmill incline to 1% and kept it there, yes I could tell that it made me work a bit harder for the times that I was doing – a good thing. Though it did make the Strava stats a bit more off than usual.

The first mile was at 7.0 mph and it felt pretty easy, so for the second one I picked it up to 7.6 mph, which felt pretty good. At the end of 2.0 miles is usually when I loose focus, slow down and when I look at the pacing graph – get mad at myself.

So I increased the treadmill speed to 8.1 mph for half a mile and then popped it up to 8.8 mph the 5K mark. No it was not easy, but I made it to the end – so much for that easy recovery run.

That is the problem with the treadmill, I don’t tend to go slow or do my recovery runs the way that I should. However, today I was pretty good, once I got to the 5K mark in 24:34, I eased the speed back to 7.0 mph until I got to the last quarter mile, then of course I picked it back up to 9.1 mph, I wanted to finish under 32:00 for the 4.0 miles.

I did.

One thing today was that the Garmin on Run Inside mode was off by .52 and my Milestone pod was off by .35. So I really do not know who’s numbers are the correct one, so I just go by the Treadmill’s reading when I run on the treadmill and when I run outside trust the GPS reading. I know that none of them are 100% accurate, but it would be nice to have them all read a bit closer to the same ending mileage, although I know it won’t happen.

Actually it was a really good run, but I still have to work on my mental toughness and yeah, I know races are run outside in crappy conditions, but when the dew points are in the 70% area and temps in the high 80’s I am making the choice to go inside for training runs.

The other thing is that Planet Fitness in Waterville seems to be upgrading some of the facility and making some changes. I noticed the old stretching area is now something else that I am going to get the instructor there to give me a few pointers on and the new stretching area doesn’t have any windows. However, outside there are Bosu balls and some other new gear, so that part is getting better. Now if they would get a foam roller that would be great.

Quarry Road 3K

Running Log — 8/28/18

I am going to try something a little different going forward. I like my written log because it has certain fields that I need to fill out every day, which provides a bit of consistency to what information I record. Between it and my spreadsheet log, I capture a lot of data, but I have to go back and forth between the two, plus the blog to get a total picture of the run. So I wanted to get the data in one place.

Today was the first time I have a run a double in a long time. This morning’s 4.0 miler was as comfortable as I could make it in the heat and humidity and then tonight well I guess you could say that I ran 3 times, but the warm-up data I just added to the spreadsheet and called it good.

Tonight was the final race of the Quarry Road Trail Race series and I was leading the 60+ division, so I thought I might have a pretty good shot at the age group overall standings. Otherwise I probably would not have gone due to the weather. The heat 88*F at the start of the race and the high humidity were at points that I really am not comfortable at racing in.

Pre-race photo – we had a bunch of high school and college cross country runners show up in addition to the regulars. They flew.

Unfortunately, my head really was not into racing, I kept wavering back and forth between simply running, running hard and racing tonight. Not really where I need to be before a race.

It showed when I finished the race.

When I started I went out conservatively, not too fast and slowed down from there. I did pretty good on the flat section by the river, but when I got over to the bumps, my heart rate shot up way too much, at which time I purposely shut down thinking about doing anything faster.

Unfortunately, I slowed down way too much.

When Julie flew by me, I didn’t even attempt to go with her. I really wanted to finish ahead of her tonight, but it wasn’t to be. The body and brain just wasn’t going to do it today in those conditions. So I went zero for Quarry Road this summer against Julie, so my hat goes off to her. She is a tougher runner than I am right now. Gotta work on that for next year. 🙂

I never stopped running, but I felt as thought I was going just about as hard as I could in the conditions, which is all I can do. So while I was disappointed with my time, I was not disappointed with the effort I gave.

I did win my Age Group for the Summer series and will proudly put my rock on the dresser. A very nice and unique trophy

The Reebok Floatride RunFasts did great on the groomed trails at Quarry Road, they are a little dirtier than the bright white they were when they were new, but they have been run in all the conditions I typically run (except for the treadmill) and have done well.

Distance: 4.07

Run Time: 36:41

Pace: 9:01

Weight: 161

Day: Tuesday

Time of Day: 10:20a

Intensity (1-10)

Course: Town Office O/B & HC

Where: Sidney

5

Weather: Hot & Humid

Temp: 79*F

Winds: 5 – W

Rating

Gr | VG | Go | F | P | VB

Shoes:

Reebok FloatRide RunFast

Shoe Miles: 46.52

Good

Week Total: 11.1

Month Total: 135.11

Year to Date: 1097.81

RUN #2 –

Distance: 2.10

Run Time: 18:30

Pace: 8:49

Day: Tuesday

Time of Day: 6:03p

Intensity (1-10)

Course: Quarry Road 3K Trail Race

Where: Waterville

8

Weather: Hot & Humid

Temp: 88*F

Winds: 7 – N

Rating

Gr | VG | Go | F | P | VB

Shoes:

Reebok FloatRide RunFast

Shoe Miles: 49.67

Good

Week Total: 14.2

Month Total: 138.26

Year to Date: 1100.96

Splits

Run #1

#1: 8:43

#2: 8:48

#3: 9:15

#4: 9:25

Run #2

#1: 8:13

#2: 9:34

Run Notes:

Run #1 —

It was one of those hot/humid muggy mess kind of days. I started out slowly and each split got slower. The shirt when I got done looked like I had gone swimming, but at least there was a little breeze and the clouds came around and blocked the sunshine, otherwise it would have been unbearable. As it was I had a tough time coming back up the hills, but made them.

Something that I do want to work on is loosing my negativity about running up hills that I seemed to have gained over the past few years. Yes, they are harder to run up as I get older, but I know that I am still a good hill runner when I set my mind to it. Chakka Shok, Chakka Cor – from the Mithgarian Dwarves. 😉

As for the RunFasts changing out the insole seemed to have did the trick. They did not bother my right forefoot at all during the run and felt just fine going at the slower speeds. Now to get back to a rotation to get them back to being my go faster shoes, although I do know that I can do any run that I do in them.

The Quarry Road Trail 3K is tonight, so that will be hot and interesting since the temps are supposed to be in the 90’s with high arse humidity.

Aches and Pains:

Surprisingly the right hip felt the best it has in a long time this morning. It might be helping that I am trying to be a little more consistent with my post-run stuff and doing a quick weight-lifting session in the mornings after walking Bennie.

Life Notes:

A pretty good day for just sitting around and relaxing for a change, it was too hot to do much outside.

Food Log:

Breakfast

Lunch

Supper

Snacks

Black Coffee

Green Tea

Iced Coffee

3 handfuls dry roasted peanuts

Peanuts

Leftover Venison Stew

Chicken/Stuffing hot dish

Veggies & Dip at race

English Muffin w/peanut and apple butter

Ciabatta Bread to soak up the juice

Corn on the cob

Turkey sandwich meat 4 slices

Yogurt

Chips

Veggies & Dip

Watermelon

3-dates

Corn Chips

Water

Banana

Green Apple

Hot 7.0 & Asking First – RunLog 8-27-18

It is going to be a wacky week, so I wanted to get my longer run in at the first of the rather than skip it completely. Unfortunately, the day turned out to be pretty damned hot, which isn’t conducive to a good long run.

But I did find a new place to run – more on that later in the post.

Now to go back up that hill. 🙂 That little triangle of light towards the top of the photo is pretty close to the top.

Let’s back up a little.

Bennie and I went for our 2 mile walk and I learned that the Salomon Sonic OGs were not going to work for me, even after changing out the insole to a much thinner one. My left plantar fascia does not like these shoes at all and by the time I got back to the house it was starting to complain way too much. Also the right shoe is a bit too snug and pushes my little toe into the next one. These had happened when I started to run in them and a couple of the things that I did to fix them, didn’t work. They are now slated to go away.

Too bad, but the way it works sometimes.

Then before I headed out the door, I decided to wear the Reebok Run Fasts again to see if the minor adjustments to the right insole helped with the rubbing/discomfort I was feeling on my right forefoot in them during my last couple of runs.

I had planned on running for about 90 minutes – somewhere between 8-10 miles, but also knew with the heat that I might change that to something else. I started out comfortably and didn’t look at my watch for split times until after 5.0 miles.

When I got up to the end of Tiffany Road, the people were outside at the farm across the road. I had always wondered where their dirt road lead and went over and respectfully asked permission to run down there, since it would be safer than running down Goodhue.

I know as a landowner, it irks the hell out of me when people just assume it is their god given right to use my property as if it is theirs. The owner thanked me for being respectful of his property and saying not everyone was as good about asking to use his private road, before just heading down it.

He said anytime I wanted to run down to the end, not a problem as long as he wasn’t running equipment or dragging logs out…no problem and we talked about how hot it was and some other “getting to know you stuff”. I headed down the dirt road which quickly turned to double-track and ended about half to three-quarters of a mile down it.

You notice I said down it – that photo at the start of the post is me looking back up the the hill I had just ran down. Coming down it didn’t seem that bad, going back up wasn’t horrible, but it was definitely uphill. 🙂

After that excursion, I just sort of plugged along at a comfortable pace and the heat was definitely starting to get a bit too hot for me. When I checked my GPS at 5.0 miles, I could tell I was starting to slow down and by the time I got to 6.0 miles I was just about done.

Now the RunFasts had been great right up to 6.0 miles, but once I got on the little hill where the dirt starts on Tiffany, it started to act up. Nothing bad, but noticeable and continued to bother until I stopped at the bottom of Stevens Hill.

Yeah, I stopped at 7.0 miles, my hat was starting to rain and I couldn’t justify beating myself up in the heat just to make it up that hill and then doing enough to get 8.0 miles in. Sometimes it is okay to push yourself into “I gotta do this mode” and there are other times like today, where I want to be somewhat fresh for Quarry Road tomorrow night that discretion is the better part of valor.

Today was that kind of day.

I am going to change out the insole and see if that makes a difference with the RunFasts. It is too bad, because I am really, really liking these shoes, they are a combination of race days shoes and daily trainers that if I can get the forefoot discomfort thing figured out, well will I really need more than these for most of my training? It would be nice to be able to go with one pair of shoes for most everything. Although I knowing me I will still putz around with more shoes than I really need.

The reality is that

Today’s run was a pretty good workout in spite of the heat, I stopped before the heat played a huge role in me slowing down to survival shuffle mode which doesn’t do anyone any good in their training runs – other than to say “gee I got my mileage in”. I would rather keep my runs a little higher quality than survival shuffle.

An old coach once told me if you train for survival shuffle, that is what you end up doing, just what you trained for. I am getting slow enough as it is, I don’t need to train for it too.

It was neat to see where that road led that I had so often wondered about. It basically goes nowhere, but is safer and kinder on the legs than running on the tar road that does get busy from time to time. Although at one time I have a feeling that where the grass has grown up in the road where it ended, looking down a ways, it did lead a lot further back into the woods.

Now to get the forefoot thing with the RunFasts taken care of and I will be pretty happy. Yeah, I do think that the running is going pretty good right now.

Now to get ready for the heat wave we have coming, just in time for the last Quarry Road Trail Race tomorrow night. They are looking at 90*F plus as a high tomorrow, so it will be a hot evening at the races. If it is too hot, it might just be a run for me, not a race, I don’t want to abuse the old body quite that much, when I am feeling pretty darn good about my running right now.

A Pretty Great Week – 8-26-18

It really has been quite a week!

Running-wise and on the personal front.

First up let’s go with the personal stuff that I want to share. We went over to New Hampshire and put a few things to rest. Going over there was something that we needed to do and one thing going over there did was give us closure on many thing related to my brother-in-law’s death last summer.

We hiked a little trail that we both love, then went by his old house, stopped at the transfer station and said thank you to them for everything they had helped us with last year and then went by camp. Some things had changed a lot and others not so much. However, the changes were not the big thing it was the idea that we needed to physically see where we had spent so much time last year and let go of some of the things we were holding on to.

Continue reading “A Pretty Great Week – 8-26-18”

Exploring Bond Brook Trails – RunLog 8-24-18

After yesterday’s harder run, I wanted to go easy this morning. At the same time, I know that I am in one of my – I am feeling good phases and knowing myself as well as I do, running slow when I am feeling this good is difficult.

So I needed to find a way to slow myself down.

Actually there is a surefire way to ensure that I run slow – go find a woods trail.

In this area Bond Brook Recreation Area in Augusta meets that definition quite nicely. No, it is not the mountain trails you read about running in magazines or blogs, but for the local area – it will get my attention and slow me down.

Besides if I don’t slow down I will come out leaking red stuff and probably have ingested a bit of the local dirt. 😉 Continue reading “Exploring Bond Brook Trails – RunLog 8-24-18”

This is the Post I Was Supposed to Write

Earlier this week, I was going to write about something else that I really love besides running…Sword and Sorcery Fantasy work by Dennis McKiernan and his world of Mithgar, but went off on a tangent.

So today, I figured I might as well get back to what I thought I was going to write that day. It is a bit lighter than other things I have written lately. 🙂

Over the years, I have read some pretty darn great Sword and Sorcery fantasy writers and their works. The likes of Tolkien, Brooks, Moorcock, Kay, Lewis to name a few. However it seems about every 2-3 years, I take the time to re-read my Dennis McKiernan collection. There is just something about the way that he writes that I devour the books and find something new or different when re-reading them.

Yes, the setting is very Tolkienesque, battles of good versus evil, with Elves, Dwarves, Humans and other similar character races. However, from my perspective McKiernan is less focused on the magic and more about the spirit the protagonists bring to the adventure against the obviously evil antagonist. Continue reading “This is the Post I Was Supposed to Write”

What Happens To Your Stuff – When You Die?

In June 2017 we went through the unexpected death of a loved one and five months later I wrote post called “What Happens to Your Stuff” that got a lot of things out of my head and off my chest. I am going to re-post some of what I wrote and update it now that after more than a year, the “stuff” side of things is finally over.

That’s right, it has been over a year and we are just finishing up the paper chase and finally getting closure regarding my brother-in-law’s death. It has been a long and tough year plus, emotionally and physically partially due to things that he didn’t take care of before he died.

I am not being morbid or bitter, just brutally honest and I am doing it purposely, because I do want you to think for a minute about what I have written. It is something that I believe is important to you and yours – it is not some fluff piece or something that I have chosen to simply whine, piss or moan about.

It is about life…and yes, death.

First and foremost, contrary to myth, legend and too much wishful thinking, we all die at some point.

The big questions are: when, how and where – not if.

That means to put it bluntly you and I will be dead at some point and we will leave people behind that will have to take care of our bodies, personal effects or properties.

Prepare a Damn Will

Take care of the things you can take care of now, BEFORE you die.

After you are dead, you cannot do a damn thing about any of those things – if you have not made your intentions known in a legal document.

It is called a WILL.

Prepare one and get it done right, not half-arsed!!!

I don’t care if you are 18, 28, 48 or 108, have the damn Will properly done. It doesn’t matter if you are rich, poor, destitute or somewhere in between. A properly prepared Will tells the government, your survivors and anyone else that matters what you want done with your body and your “stuff” after you are dead.

If you do nothing else this one thing will save the people who have to deal with your death many headaches and heartaches and empower them to take care of stuff you leave behind.

Without a Will, the Courts (government) have the final say about what happens to you and your stuff. It probably won’t be what you wanted or expected to have happen and will cost your survivors money to pay for the lawyers who are required to be involved.

Except in specific instances the people who survive you, often simply can’t just take things or start living in your old home without the Court’s permission or they may have to pay market value for your old stuff that they want to keep from your estate – no matter how big or small.

Remember without a Will, the Courts and lawyers have most of the power over your stuff.

Home Repairs

If you own a home get it up to code and repair what needs to be repaired. However, those things that we adapt to, jury-rig and don’t really notice anymore are things that can cause major headaches for those who have to pick up the pieces after you die.

Check out your heating system, plumbing, etc. and see if they are up to your local building codes – if not get going on repairs or if you know there are other repairs that need to be done and can afford to get the work done – do it. For your own safety and also to make it easier on the people who have to take care of your home after you are dead.

If you can’t afford the repair costs, then talk with the people who you expect to take care of things once you are dead and figure out a plan for your home going forward with them. Otherwise they are going to have to spend their time and money bringing your home and property back up to code, so they can either live in it, rent it out or sell it.

You do it now or they get to do it later.

Get Rid of Shit

I am not saying that you need to embrace minimalism, but all that great stuff you have collected over the course of your life and have coming out of the closets, stored in the basement or attic, in the garage or heaven forbid in a storage facility.

You know those great collections of old computers, porn magazines from the 70’s & 80’s, baseball cards, comic books, the boat, camper, vehicles that don’t run, guns, hunting gear, books, shot glasses, spoons, running shoes, all those projects that you were going to start/finish and have the materials for (but you know that you will never actually get to), the old games, pieces of furniture you no longer like/use and all the other shit that you are hanging on to for no reason other than to hang on to it.

Don’t justify keeping all that shit by saying – “they” can sell everything and get money for it. You know the old idea of: have a yard sale, sell it on eBay, Uncle Henry’s or someplace else.

That is mostly bullshit and not reality.

Get real.

Think about it, who in the hell wants to take the time to sell all of their mom, dad, brother, sister, aunt, uncle or worse a child’s possessions, when they are in the midst of grieving about you being dead and gone.

No one.

The biggest thing on their mind during that time is thinking about how much you will be missed and all they want to do is get rid of the shit as fast as possible. So they can get back to living their life and not having to grieve over and over, about something that brings back another fantastic memory of you.

The Reality is That

I would like you to think about what I have said in this post.

Am I being barbaric to ask to you to actually think about your being dead and what will happen to your body and possessions when it happens?

No, I personally do not think so, I think it is prudent and thoughtful on your part to make your passing easier on the ones you loved who are still alive, especially if your death is unexpected.

Think about those people and loved ones who have to throw out your dirty underwear or other possessions or stuff that you don’t want the world or even your spouse/children to know about. Get rid of them now, not later when there is no choice in the matter about who is going to see that shit and have to dispose of those items.

Remember, we all die and don’t take anything with us to whatever there is beyond that death.

I strongly believe it is our responsibility while we are still alive to make it easier on the loved ones you do leave behind, to get rid of as much “stuff” as you can and still live a comfortable life before you pass, and probably most importantly have an up to date Last Will and Testament that the Courts will recognize.

The bottom line is – it is your shit and your responsibility to take care of it, so someone else does not have to.

So do it.