Lots of Little Things – RunLog 9-28-18

I did not go to the Rise ‘N Shine 5K in Augusta this morning. Right now there is just too much going on and I don’t have the extra umph left to race for right now. Maybe in another month or so when things settle back down, but right now I am too damn tired all the time it seems to push the extra gears it takes for racing.

Congratulations to all those who did run at 6:30 this morning, you did great!

I decided to not run the race earlier in the week and when I did the long run yesterday, I knew that I wasn’t going to run race this morning. Which was probably a really good thing, since SD2’s contractor dropped off his excavator at the job site at 11:30pm last night. It woke me up and I went over to investigate what was going on and who was over there. I wasn’t too impressed with that decision of his. Didn’t get to sleep too soon after that let me tell ya.

So it was just as well I hadn’t planned on racing this morning.

Although I did run today.

Another afternoon run, it almost seems like that is becoming more the norm lately than I would like or expect, but it is what it is. At least I am still getting out there and running down the road more often than not.

A very good thing.

However, I was wondering what was going on with my right foot. When I walked around the house barefoot and turned or came down on the outside of it, there was some sharp pain flare-ups happening more often than usual. It happened enough that I wondered if I should run or not. The thing was when I had shoes on walking around, the foot felt fine and I could twist, bend my foot with my hand, so I figured that I would go ahead and start the run and see how things felt.

It doesn’t feel like a stress fracture, more like a ligament or the tailor’s bunionette giving me a little more grief than usual. I ran a longer run for me yesterday, so that might have something to do with it? It is something I will keep a close eye one and shut things down if it continues to bother.

The weather was just about perfect, so I started out real easy and the foot felt fine. So I decided to keep a steady but comfortable effort through the first 3.0 miles and if everything felt good pickup the pace a little for the last mile.

Coming back from Bartlett I saw a woman with two dogs running in the other direction. We waved and I marveled/was jealous of how well her dogs behaved off-leash. The stayed right with her and didn’t hardly look at me, but they did place themselves between us.

If only Bennie could do that…never happen he is too hyper and too damaged by his previous owners to be let off leash. He goes and doesn’t come back and we have to chase/distract him, so we can catch him again, which can take hours.

I was feeling pretty good at the 3.0 mile mark, so I picked up the pace. Nothing crazy, just lengthened the stride out a little. Enough that I got down around 8:00 for a while. As I was finishing, I did go back by the woman with the dogs again and she yelled out to me “that is a great pace you got going”. Which made me smile and of course, I said “Thanks”. It is still nice when someone that you don’t know gives you a compliment out of the blue.

The right foot felt fine the entire run, so I am not sure what is going on there. I did run in the Peg34s and they felt great for the whole run.

One thing that I did this afternoon while dog sitting was look closely at my old Saucony Zealot 3s. They are a shoe that I really like everything about except for the way the bootie was too snug on my feet and after 4-5 miles my Metatarsals felt squeezed and would start to hurt until I stopped running.

When I got looking closely at the bootie construction without the insoles in, there is not a lot of give to the bootie and I got to wondering if I put a slit on each side of the bootie if it would loosen them up enough to make them shoes I can wear without discomfort. So I did. I figured that they are useless to me otherwise, so why not?

I will wear them sometime over the next week on a run to see if they still bother. I really do like the Saucony shoe styles, but their bootie construction in the Zealot 3s just doesn’t seem to work for me. Which is just my luck, I finally find a Saucony shoe that feels wide enough, but has that something that is not quite right about it for my feet. I hate to give up on a shoe that I like so much about…this is their last chance I have a feeling.

Overall, another one of those busy arse days, but I still had time for a pretty good run. 🙂

A Longer Run on the Pond Road – RunLog 9-27-18

Happy Birthday to my little sister – another year older.

I started this last night and just ran out of brain power to finish it until this morning. With the negative political scene unfolding where no one wins and we all lose, SD2 house adventures, the normal getting ready for winter stuff, I am totally exhausted. I think that like many people life is getting more and more complicated, and not as enjoyable as it could be.

Sometimes I think that Bennie has the perfect life.

The rains ended last night and this morning was just about perfect for a run.

I haven’t had a chance to do a longer run for a while, I have been capped at around 8.0 miles since July, so I thought about going for double-digits for the first time in a while. However, once I got going I was pretty sure that wasn’t going to happen and figured that I would just go out to Goodhue and finish up with my typical 7.0 miler.

The first mile was comfortable and I was surprised at how I felt when I got there, which got me to re-thinking that going for a longer than usual run. I was just plugging along listening to my running playlist – an eclectic mix from the Archie’s Sugar, Sugar to hard thumping stuff.

By the time I got to 3.0 miles I was beginning to think about running around the Pond Road Loop. A course I haven’t done in years and used to run quite often in 2012 & 2013. As I have gotten older instead of seeking out hills, I tend to avoid the worst of them. I slow down too much going up one compared to the rest of the run. So in order to do the Pond Road, I have to go up Bartlett Hill and then Stevens.

How much I slow down nowadays going up those hills hurts the ego too much I guess to seek them out regularly.

Even so, when I got to Goodhue, instead of turning back like I normally do, my feet carried me down the hill towards the Pond Road. I was feeling good, the feet didn’t hurt and I was comfortable running.

Of course the bad part about the Pond Road is that it is also Route 23 and the there is a lot more traffic on it. Today wasn’t much of an exception and of course the worst possible place for me to meet a vehicle is where I met a couple and had to bounce pretty far into the ditch to feel safe.

After that it was just plugging along, every so often singing along with the playlist. I am sure that I scared every critter and person along that route. It probably sounded like someone was choking a chicken hehehe. Oh well, I know that I can’t sing, but if I have my ear buds in I can’t hear myself sing.

Once I got onto Bartlett my fears were confirmed and I slowed down quite a bit going up that hill. I just can’t seem to shift into a lower gear and keep moving at the same pace like I used to be able to.

Coming down the other side was pretty good once I got my wind back in the sails and then I slowed down again when I hit Stevens Hill – same thing.

When I got to the house my feet were starting to bother a little. It takes about 5-6 long runs in a pair of shoes to to actually get them feeling more comfortable running long. I was still feeling pretty good though. However, I didn’t want to push the feet too much and I was starting to get tired and I shut it down at 9.0 miles.

Not quite double-digits, but a pretty damn good confidence builder for going forward. I just know that I won’t race well on a hilly course. Not that I am racing all that much anyway.

I think racing will have to wait until SD2 gets in her house and things calm down a bit more around the house. My mind really just isn’t into the race scene right now, I am really too tired mentally to add that into the mix.

A Bit More Structure to My Workout – RunLog 9-25-18

This morning was the first morning where I had to I could see my breath, wear gloves and a mid-weight jacket when walking Bennie first thing.

It was just damned chilly.

I wanted to get a little speed work in today, but this morning things got a bit busy, so I had to wait until later in the day. By then it started to rain, not a bad or all that cold this afternoon, but I didn’t want to play on the track over Colby in the wet, so off to the gym I headed.

When I got there I figured that I would go for 5.0 miles with interval repeats at race pace. However, I was pretty pressed for time since I needed to get back home to help walk the pups out in the rain, so I wasn’t sure about actually getting to that distance.

Here is what I did:

.50 @ 7.2 mph – warm-up

.50 @ 8.6 mph

.25 @ 7.5 mph

.25 @ 8.6 mph

I had really thought about doing quarters at race pace (sub 7:00s) after that, but by the time I had gotten to mile 1.5 I needed to jump off and hurry off to the locker room for about 5 minutes. When I got back I went right back to it, but decided that half’s were going to get me done faster than quarters.

.50 @ 8.6 mph

.25 @ 7.5 mph

1.0 @ 8.6 mph — I decided to do a mile and it felt pretty great.

.25 @ 7.5 mph

.50 @ 8.7 mph

4.0/28:59

I really wanted to do that last mile, but I just ran out of time and needed to rush back to the house. However, as usual my Garmin wasn’t even close to the treadmill readouts, but it really is not a big deal.

Also I did use my Nike Rival 6s and they definitely reminded of why I liked them so much. I run well in the Rivals and if it were not for the Reebok RunFasts these would be my go faster shoes on a regular basis. They do not bother my feet and I have confidence that I could run well in them up to the half marathon distance without any issues.

It was a good workout and I worked up a nice sweat. Running on the treadmill takes more time to get the gym and back, but at the same time it gives me more control over the actual speed I am running. The treadmill forces me to run certain speeds at a more consistent pace than I ever do outside, which is a good thing.

Yep, we got a bit wet walking the dogs, but I made it back in time. 🙂

Got My Hour In – RunLog 9-24-18

It seems that my mid morning runs lately have turned more into my mid-afternoon run. Today was no exception and the good thing is that by the time I got around to running it had warmed up to the mid 50’s with the breeze slowing down a lot from the morning. So in my opinion it was just about perfect weather for a great run.

Was the run great?

Well that is a matter of opinion.

After yesterday’s faster run, I wasn’t going to beat my brains in by running faster two days in a row, no matter how great the weather was. So I didn’t put on the Reebok RunFasts and just wore my daily trainers. More to remind myself not to be dumb and take it pretty easy today.

While I didn’t quite make my easy/recovery zone pace zone and stayed in the No Zone for most of the run, I was feeling good and didn’t feel as though I was working very hard. I did slow quite a bit on Stevens Hill and then picked it up a little more after getting to the top.

Was it a great run…err no, but it was a great day for running and I ran a little faster than I wanted because of it.

Last Week – Week In Review 9-23-18

Last week was another of those weeks that was just a blur now. About all I remember is that I think I ran pretty well and Fall is officially here, with winter nipping closely at its heals.

So yeah, there is a lot of getting ready for winter going on around the house right now. Repairing the little things, checking out the roofs to make sure they up to having snow sit on them, cleaning the wood stove’s chimney, mice proofing things as they get ready to move in and other similar “get ready for winter” stuff. Plus putting the garden to bed will happen this or next week, so it is a busy time of year.

Also SD2’s house is not going to be ready for the end of September and her lease at the rental apartment is up so it means moving in with us for a few weeks in October. Which means making room in our house for her and four critters. It will be tight, but it will work out just fine.

Enough of life’s woe, let’s get back to what I usually write about – running.

Running

No major injuries, over 35 miles for the week and another new to me pair of running shoes from eBay made for a busy week on the running front.

35 miles, it doesn’t sound like a lot when you read how many miles other runners put into their weekly account. However, when you are out there doing that average of 5.0 miles a day, it seems like a pretty good number, especially when I am just running, not training for anything in particular. I am just enjoying getting out the door and running without any pressure to meet certain paces or mileage.

Yeah, I am not training for anything right now and probably won’t run a race until Thanksgiving (if I do one then), not because I am injured or anything. It is more that I just really do not feel like racing right now. If the urge hits me, I might jump in one at the last minute, but I have no big plans to go out and run a particular race.

So I will keep running what I feel like running, keeping to my weekly routine and focus on one thing – enjoying my running.

Running Shoes

As far as my running shoes go, I am solidly in the Nike Pegasus world for easy and recovery runs. I got in a pair of 34s to go along with my 33s and they will be my daily trainers, while I attempt to keep the 33 shields for colder/nastier winter running.

My Reebok RunFasts are my go faster shoes that I could actually use as a single pair to do everything, but won’t. Yes, they are getting dirty and looking nasty, because I actually run in them – they have almost 100 miles on them and I am still liking the RunFasts.

I haven’t done a lot of trail running lately and with hunting seasons winding up around the house, don’t see me doing a lot for a while, but the Nike Wild Horse OGs will probably be on my feet if I do.

My running shoe rotation is rapidly shrinking and is leaning decidedly towards Nike. They fit my feet well, don’t bother me on the runs that I do in them and I am liking the Pegasus line more and more.

I ran in the Pegasus OG back in 1983 and while they have changed a lot, the 33 and 34 models seem to harken back to the original premise of the shoe. Light enough to go faster if you want to, comfortable enough to run longer if you want and decent looking enough to go out on the town in jeans.

The Pegasus line reminds me a lot of the girl next door syndrome. They have always been there and you sort of look at them from time-to-time, but others are newer, with all kinds of bling and promises of greatness that you really don’t stop and take a close enough look. You kind of Pooh Pooh them as old-fashioned and not for you. Then one day without realizing why, you look closely at that girl next door and find out there is something there that has been missing in your life and the rest is as they say – history.

I think that is the story of the Pegasus line for me. I would usually take a quick look at them before I bought a pair of new running shoes, but they were always – not quite what I thought I wanted – Not light enough, too stiff, old news tech and all the other reasons I found to keep looking at so many other running shoes.

Now it seems that they are exactly what I want and are versatile enough to do just about any run that I am planning over the next few months.

Sometimes it seems that after trying so many different brands, models, styles of running shoes, that what I am really looking for in a pair of running shoes is right in front of me. The Nike Pegasus line, which has aged more gracefully than I have as a runner.

Running Injuries

That right hip flared up again and I have a feeling that it will always be an issue for me until it doesn’t matter anymore and the left Achilles is pretty much in the same boat. They both do better when I lift weights and work on the rehab stuff that I should be doing, but skipped last week too much, with life getting in the way or I was feeling like crap.

Although not running related when I chipped the wood out back, I am pretty sure that I breathed in some nasty crap that made me feel about like crap for a couple of days. Thankfully it seems to have passed so that is a good thing.

Last week I was complaining about my left Plantar Faciitis bothering due to my adidas Response Boost shoes. Well guess what I stopped running in them and the pain in the bottom of my feet has gone away, so you know what is happening to those shoes. Gone.

The reality is that

It was another pretty good week in the life of Harold. It seems that even though we are now retired, our lives haven’t seemed to slow down all that much. If anything it will probably be speeding up for a while.

However, it seems that life comes full circle at times and SD2 will be moving in with us temporarily this coming weekend, which should prove to be interesting and like all moves of this sort will come with its own challenges and compromises from everyone.

While I have gotten back to my earlier days of running in the Nike Pegasus line. I have a feeling that my running shoe rotation will get simpler, especially since I left the Running Shoe Geeks group on Facebook. I don’t see all those comments on the newest and greatest running shoes and think gee I should try them too. I think that the Nike shoes I have will be versatile enough along with my RunFasts to get me through the rest of the year. We will see.

Running will probably be hit or miss most of the week. Today we have someone coming to look at the master bathroom. Expensive probably, then get another vehicle inspected tomorrow, doggy daycare, getting new front steps built, first walk-through on SD2’s house Friday, moving her in during the weekend and whatever else pops up as the week goes on. Then keeping getting ready for the winter.

I have a feeling the mantra for this week will be – be flexible.

Interruptions or is that Just Country Living – RunLog 9-22-18

The story of this run was the interruptions.

I would love to say that I set all kinds of Strava segment course records during my run today – of course I didn’t and actually didn’t plan to. My plan for this run was to run it slow and easy after yesterday’s faster 5K workout.

The first mile was right about where I thought it would be. It seems that my body thinks that a 9:00 minute pace is just about right for an easy/recovery run. Slower than that and the mind/body connection or is it just me being me just feels uncomfortable. I prefer my runs to be comfortable, so I go at a comfortable pace for me.

On the second mile, when I topped the rise, there were a couple of deer on the side of the road. So I stopped and took a photo and then another as I got closer. Finally, I got to within about 20 yards and they still were not sure about whether they were leaving or not. So I clapped my hands to scare them off.

Now I have some tree hugger tendencies at times, but I am a hunter as well and while these two were cute as hell, they are still wild animals who have the freeze, flight or fight survival instincts down to a science.

They were not sure what I was so they froze, I wanted to give them every opportunity to get out of there by showing me that pretty white flag – that is why I clapped. Even deer will attack and defend themselves if they think they have to or are cornered/surprised and they can be pretty nasty. I respect a wild animal’s survival instincts and prefer them to use that second one of theirs whenever possible.

After that interruption, I ran for a while and then on the way back Bob – the local farmer/landowner turned off his tractor as I was getting ready to run by. I had planned on simply waving and keep going, but it was evident he wanted to talk. We talked for almost 20 minutes and I was starting to stiffen up pretty good, so I bid him adieu and stumbled down the road until I got the legs loosened back up. It is good to talk with Bob (I get caught up on the local gossip), but he always seems to catch me when I am running.

The rest of the run was just about doing the 5.0 miles and seeing how size 9 Peg 34s felt on my feet versus the 8.5 Peg 33s.

They do have a little more toe room, are a bit heavier and they need the heel-lock lacing to get a good heel grip, otherwise pretty much the same feel. Yes, they definitely breathe better than the 33s as well, so I will save the 33s shields more for winter running and go to primarily using the 34s until the weather gets colder, nastier. They feel like more a daily trainer than the 33s and I will use them for that.

Just a run with more than a couple of interruptions, but everything felt pretty good during the run.

Then this I got to play carpenter to “fix” my previous carpentry adventure when I re-built the shed doors. Of course I tried the easy fix first, instead of the correct one, by changing where the door hinges were set on the frame, but then they wouldn’t close right.

Needless to say that didn’t workout too well.

So I had another one of my brilliant brain farts and I took out the saws-all to trim back the offending door a little. I learned that a saws-all is great for demolition and roughing something out, but sucks for finish work.

Yeah, then I decided to finally do it the correct way. I had to take the door off the hinges and get the circular saw out to straighten out the mess I had made of the door.

A job that if I had done that in the first place instead of being lazy, would have taken about 30 minutes, instead took me almost 3 hours. I never said I was much of a carpenter and when I do, it does take me about two-three times as long as it should. 😉

Oh well at least now the doors shut and lock enough to keep varmints out of the shed where we keep the recyclables and trash. One more thing off the honey-do list before winter. I would love to think it is getting shorter, but it is an ever expanding list that never seems to be finished. Hehehehe

Yesterday Sucked, Today Was Much Better – RunLog 9-21-18

Yesterday, yeah I ran, no I didn’t feel like it at all. I felt like crap all day and finally I had to decide whether to just do it or skip my running for the day. I figured that I wouldn’t feel much worse, so I did a slow but tough 3.3 miles later in the afternoon and felt a bit better after I got done running.

I really think that the wood chipping that I did on Wednesday afternoon had a lot to do with how I was feeling yesterday. The old tree I was chipping and the other stuff that was laying around on the ground that got put through the chipper wasn’t in the best shape. So I was probably got exposed to something that wasn’t all that healthy.

Yesterday’s sunrise was pretty spectacular.

This morning I felt a lot better, so I wanted to do a little longer run, along with a few miles of faster stuff. However, I wasn’t really committed to running at 5K or better pace after feeling like crap the day before.

I did wear the Reebok RunFasts since I planned on running “faster”.

The first mile I was holding back, I was focusing more on keeping my stride fluid, than pushing the pace, so I was very surprised when I got home and saw the first mile split was under 8:00. I knew that I was running well and by not looking at the watch, I wasn’t sure of the pace, but it was a comfortably hard and I thought that I had gone a little quicker for miles 2.0 and 3.0.

I really thought it felt like 8:10 or so, but not the sub 8:00 it ended up being.

As you can see by the graph my first mile was the fastest and while kept under 8:00s for the 5K, each mile after that first one was slower than the one before. Nothing hurt and I was feeling pretty darn good, but when I got to the 5K mark (24:05), I shut it down and coasted up to Goodhue.

I had thought about doing a hard mile at some point on the way home and maybe chasing a segment CR down on the flats before Stevens Hill. However, there was that slight issue of having to find a nice place to hop in the woods and lose weight. Once that was done, I got back to running.

Unfortunately, I had lost my mojo and decided that I would just run easy back to the house. The rest of the way was just putting one foot in front of the other until I got home.

I did have to laugh, once I got to the cornfields, it started to rain and then when I got back past them, it stopped again. It seemed as though at that point, the cornfields were the rain/no rain line. 🙂 Unfortunately, going back it was into a 10 mph or so headwind, but I wasn’t trying to break any land speed records so it wasn’t a big deal.

That slight issue that I was having with the RunFasts and my right foot didn’t happen at all, so that was a nice part of this run!!! They were great when I was running at what I would expect my 10K race pace range to be and then when I ran at the easy pace they were great too. The RunFasts have done everything that I have asked of them and are a great shoe that are now gettin close to 100 miles and I still like them as much as I did when I first started running in them.

Overall, I was very happy with the first 5K and how I felt coming back running easy. However, the best thing was that the RunFasts didn’t bother my right forefoot at all! Very good run.

Pepin Road & Forgetting About the Shoes – RunLog 9-19-18

Two days in a row where my feet haven’t bothered me – at all. Which tells me that my foot problems were a result of wearing the adidas Response Boost and nothing else.

Phew.

It also means that the Response Boost will not return for an encore performance. At this point in my running life, I don’t want to deal with crap from a pair of shoes that do not work with my feet.

I just want to run – comfortably.

And that is just what I did this morning. I ran 5.0 miles comfortably and didn’t think about my running shoes, I just ran.

After thinking about what I wanted to do, I decided to head down to the new end of Pepin Road and see what was going on there since they put the road extension in. Two more houses are being built on the little hill there (gonna be a pain in the arse in the winter for those houses that are going in on that extension). Other than that Pepin hasn’t changed much since the last time I ran down there – a good thing.

The weather was just about perfect for a good run: cloudy, 55*F and a bit of breeze out of the NE. I started out pretty slow and picked up the pace a little as I ran down the hill. Today was supposed to be an easy run so I throttled back on the pace a little more than I usually would going down Pepin – even though I was feeling pretty good.

Coming back up the hill was against that breeze, which made it just that much more of a pain running uphill, but I somehow survived Philbrick Hill. Yeah right…I ran up feeling better than I have in a long time. It wasn’t a fast time, but I wasn’t reduced to survival shuffle up it – I actually maintained a decent dare I say stride, which is not something I have been able to on all too many runs back up this hill lately. So it felt pretty good.

After that I stretched out the legs just a bit, nothing all that hard, but enough to move into the comfortably hard category a couple of times.

Overall a pretty good run and one where my feet didn’t bother and I didn’t have to think about my shoes at all, except after I finished and realized that I didn’t think about them. 🙂

Oh yeah, they were the Peg 33s.

Then this afternoon, I did my cross training by chipping brush for about an hour and half. This a tough upper body workout that also makes me bend, twist and shout a little.

By the time I got done, I was definitely tired, especially when I got out the axe and played around the with stump of the blow-down tree that I was chipping for another half hour. I will play with that stump off and on for the next few weeks or until I get fed up and put an old chain on the chainsaw and get rid of it. Actually wacking on that stump with an axe does feel good – just something about it feels like a good at a very deep level.

Ahhh but those muskles (sp on purpose) that I didn’t know I still had are now complaining about how abused they were this afternoon.

More Better Run – Yah

This morning I was going through my Feedly feeds (I know, it sounds weird) and one of the blogs that I follow is Joe Henderson’s Writings. That guy, the one that used to be the Runner’s World editor back in the day.

Screen Shot on 9/19/18 from Joe Henderson’s blog

He republishes a lot of his old articles on this blog and this morning was one that really hit home for me.

More Better Runs

It put into words many of the feelings that I have been having lately about my running and running races. My problem is that I know in reality this is what I am actually doing, but my head still has this idea that I need to train for races, then race a race.

However, when I look back at my training log, it is closer to what Henderson is talking about in the article. My longer days are shorter, my faster days are slower and yes, my slower days seem to be faster than what a training plan would call for. You know a lot of time spent in the “No Zone” training zone, but where I feel fine when I am running.

Maybe I am already doing Joe’s training plan and just didn’t realize it. 🙂

The only difference I would have from the article is that when/if I go to a race, that I do my best that I can that day and not be as disappointed with the results if they do not meet my expectations. Focus more on the experience than the results, which is hard, but getting more necessary since the results are often, well most of the time, less than I want when I do race.

At some point I will finally realize that racing is not the thing I enjoy the most about my running, it is the daily runs that fuel my soul and bring me the most joy.

Some times I really think that I need to get rid of all my running improvement books and just run. I would probably be better off in the long run.

Read the whole article by Joe and see what you think of it. I know that the young guns out there will scoff and offer other advice, but at a certain point in each runner’s life, these words start to make much more sense.

They are starting to for this old fart.