Sunday, July 29, 2007

Week 11:: Back on Track

After a disastrous Week 10 with a trip to the chiropractor and just over five miles run for the week, Week 11 was much much better.

I went to The Track Shack on Monday to replace my shoes. Unfortunately, they did not have my size in stock for the shoe I wanted. I tried on a few others, Adidas, Asics, Brooks and the bottom line is I really like the Nikes I have been running in. They have been ordered and should be in on Tuesday.

That means I have continued to run in the worn out shoes. Of course, they need to be replaced, but I should be fine until they're in.

My hip has been a little sore this week, but I have slowed my pace a bit to compensate for it. I think the new shoes should remedy the problem.

Union Square, San Fancisco

This week was also recommitment week for Team in Training. Basically, I had to fill out some paperwork that said, I am planning on particpating and I was still on track to raise the minimum required funds of $3,900. Yikes. I'm just over halfway there. If you're interesting in learning how you can help, click here.

Darrell and I made the decision that I will travel to San Francisco with the TNT crew and my personal support crew will be staying home. It makes me sad that they won't be there, but without any idea of how I am going to feel after the race, it is probably a wise choice. I can imagine I will want a nap after the race, my kids will want to get out and about. There will be other races and other trips.

Instead of a crazy long run this weekend, I met up with The TNT crew in Clermont for some hill repeats. Clermont is an oddity in flat Florida. The home of the Triathilon National Training Center, it is quite hilly. I ran the same hill, hidden in a neighborhood four times - and I am feeling it today. I hope we make it out there at least a few more times. It will definately help! We were told not to worry about milage and focus on time instead. I ended up with just under eight and half miles. How funny is it that eight miles really doesn't seem like all tha much anymore.

Time is ticking - the race is getting closer and for the most part, I'm still feeling pretty good about it. Next week I have over forty miles, including an 18 mile long run on Saturday. A group of people are going to run the Moss Park Forest Run 10k. The entire course is supposed to be shaded. I haven't made up my mind if I want to do it, but I might. Would I run three loops? I could... But it might be easier to just run it at home.

Friday, July 27, 2007


It's 5:00 PM on Friday night and with hill training in the morning, I have pasta with sausage on my mind.

My family is rolling their collective eyes at me.

I think I'm going to have to cook two meals tonight. One for me, and antother for the "Really? Do we have to eat that again" crew.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The Mystery Text Message

Tonight at 7:51 I was faced with a cunundrum. Someone had sent me a cryptic text message and I didn't know who it was from. The message:
Id rather be running. Flying home.


The sender assumed I should know who it was.

I have met my friend Marathon Chris a few times and I can't remember if we exchanged phone numbers. I think I would have programmed her number into my phone if I had it - because I would have needed to call her if I couldn't find her at a race. But she is in San Diego. It could have been her...

I have also met my friend David at a race. Coincidentally, I had just accepted a Facebook invitation to be his "friend". David is on vacation in Rhode Island (check out his blog for some amazing pictures and a vacation I am envious of). Was David cruising through facebook waiting for his plane and decided to send me a text message? It could have been him.

I replied back:

Have a safe trip. I didn't know who it was.

Another message:

Wilco. Will be good to be back w peeps.

Hmmm. Who was it?

Then it occured to me. Ross.

Ross was in Virgina on company business and is due back in the "office" tomorrow.

Mystery solved.

This is what I thought was cool about this:

"Id rather be running".

I know three people (with a 407 area code) that are spread out accross the country right now who that could have been.

I also know others all over the country - all over the world, Arkansas, Ohio, New York, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, and even England and Scotland that that message could have come from.


Thursday, July 19, 2007


Midway through week ten and it hasn't been a good one so far.

My kids left early Monday morning with my in-laws to go to the Western North Carolina Mountains. I spent early Monday morning making sure that teeth were brushed, hair was done, and those tooth and hair brushes were packed etc...

I made a decision that I would make up my Monday run. Tuesday morning went as planned. 5 miles. Wednesday is supposed to be my cross-training day. Since I was on vacation, my cross-training has disappeared. I need to get back into that... I was thinking that I would make up that Monday run on Wednesday. The morning run didn't happen. I'm not as tired as I have been, but I have been up later than normal... Arrrgh.

The plan was to run when I got home. With the torrential downpour / thunderstorm in Downtown Orlando didn't even get me to the parking garage until 6:30 PM. I was starving when I got home. As you probably guessed, it didn't happen. I was thinking I could break up the missed run over the next two days.

Last night I rolled over in bed and felt so much pain in my right hip, that I actually screamed out in pain. I got up, hobbled to the kitchen and took some Advil. I got to the foot of the bed and I couldn't move. Darrell said, What are you doing?"

I was hurting so bad, I couldn't move. I couldn't lay down. It was so bad I was crying.

I begged and pleaded my way into the chiropractor's office. She said my hip was really jammed in there. she also said my neck was tighter than a bow string. I feel much better now. Whew!

She suggested I plan on seven miles instead of 14 on Saturday. She suggested a loop instead of an out and back so if I feel good at mile seven, I can keep going. I'm thinking it will be "Treadmill Saturday".

She asked me how many miles I had on my shoes. Are you ready for this?

450 miles! It really seems like I just bought them.

She told me Do not pass go, do not collect $200. GO GET NEW SHOES NOW!!!!

I couldnt make it to Orlando today (the doctor's appointment meant I worked from home). So tomorrow, it will be new shoes time.

I'm going to try hard to not beat myself up over these missed runs. I need to be healthy to run, and I doubt the ten miles I missed this week are going to blow my whole program. I know missing runs cannot continue, but after the new shoes, I'll be ready to get back to business.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Week 9 :: It Was Okay

For the first time in nine weeks, I missed a run. It was not misplaced or made up at a later date, it just did not happen.

I ran Monday night when I got home form work. I didn't even get my run started until 8:30 PM which is super late, but I really wanted to get it in. Monday was the last day in the Nike Plus Chllenge I joined on Robert Nelson's running blog. It was most miles in four weeks. I took first place in the challenge with just over 120 miles.

I had planned on running Tuesday night, but it just didn't happen. I thought that I could make it up on Wednesday morning. I overslept. Bahhh.

I ran Speedwork on Thursday night - 7 x 800. A little slower than my normal pace. But still got those seven miles done in less than an hour (58:48) w00t!

I have been so incredibly tired. All I was to do is sleep. I agree with Marathon Chris that is partly due to my current situation. I am feeling a lot of stress and it's taking it's toll. Again, Bahhh.

I have never been able to run in the morning after an evening run. So that Tuesday run happening on Friday was out.

I was up at 4:20 AM on Saturday morning to be at Winter Garden Sataion of the West Orange Trail at 5:45 AM for a 14 miler that turned into 14 1/2 or so. I started out pretty strong and at mile nine I started to drag.

The West Orange Trail hooks up with the South Lake Trail For those not familiar with the area, it might be odd that one county's West trail meets up with another county's South trail, and not an East Trail but it totally makes sense.

I really has to dig deep to get through this one. I think there were a couple of things going on here:

  • I did not eat properly Friday night.

  • It was HOT

  • My socks were squishy

  • I bought some new socks on Thursday. I decided to try some wicking socks and settled on the Adidas Clima-Cool socks ($11.00 for two pair- YIKES!) I thought they might help my toes and the blisters I get with long runs. By mile 9, when I started struggling, I noticed my feet were squishing in my shoes. I never had that problem with cotton socks. Sure, the socks were pulling the moisture away from my feet and then it was just sitting in my shoes. Gross. I actually had to put my shoes in the sun when I got hoe to dry them out.

    Overall, it wasn't an awful week. It wasn't my best either, but they can't all be butterflies and unicorns.

    Saturday was my longest run to date, ever. And though I was tired for the rest of the day, I still feel okay about the week

    Sunday, July 08, 2007

    Week 8 :: A Challenge

    I don't know if it was the holiday smack in the middle of the week, or that in addition to other non-running turbulence, but this week was a tough one. I somehow managed to get all of my runs in. I'm not sure how...

    I may have mentioned that my company's lease was up at the end of May and our new building was still not ready for us. I have been working from home since then and it really agreed with me and my training. The new building is still not completed and last Thursday we moved into a temporary space.

    The temporary office is in downtown Orlando, a former shopping complex attached to Church Street Station, which was a swingin' night spot in the late eighties and early nineties. The space was converted to offices and was home to TransContenintal, owned by Lou Perlman, the man behind The Backstreet Boys and *NSYNC. Mr. Perlman is now bankrupt and an alleged felon. The building sat empty for three months until we arrived on Thursday morning.

    There are some issues with the situation that are just dragging me down. Including:

  • The old office was a 26 mile drive that took me about 45 minutes in the morning to arrive. The new temporary office is a 42 mile drive that includes two toll roads to the tune of $2.50 one way, and it takes an hour and fifteen minutes to an hour and a half to get there.

  • There is no microwave or drinking water. Ah... The things we take for granted. I am working hard at properly fueling myself and with no way to store or heat food, I have eaten out two days in a row and it seems that trend will continue until we get into the new office. I brought water back with me Thursday afternoon (I left the downtown area to put gas in my car) but Friday, I never came across any.

  • And overall the building is just disgusting. Yuck.

  • Excuse my whining, but the situation has me in sort of a funk.

    My Monday and Tusday runs went without incident. Nothing special, and everything as planned. I started feeling tired and cross training on Wednesday didn't happen. I was so tired on Thursday, I could not bring myself to run in the morning. I planned on running when I got home from work.

    I was not planning on getting home at 7:30 PM and being starving. I cooked dinner and by the time I ate, I really just wanted to go to bed. I was asleep by 9:30 PM.

    Friday I was determined to make up my seven mile run. I had 6 X 800s scheduled and I really enjoy speedwork. I ran and by mile five, my stomach was not feeling so hot. I plugged along, finished my intervals and the seven miles and headed for the shower. I turned the shower on as cold as I could stand. I had a feeling that warm water was not going to agree with me. As it turns out, nothing was agreeing with me. After just a few minutes, I was forced to bolt across the bathroom and I threw up.

    Is that running 'til you puke?

    That has happened to me one other time when I ran a long distance without much in my stomach.

    I recovered, finished my shower and took my time getting something to eat and slowly ate. I wasn't sick the rest of the day, but my stomach was still feeling a little sensitive.

    After I had missed my Thursday run, I was feeling like I was behind the eight-ball for the remainder of the week. I ran my five mile Friday run on Saturday and then we headed off to EPCOT and the Magic Kingdom. We didn't get home until after midnight, and I didn't have the world's best dinner last night. With a twelve mile long run looming over me, I didn't know if I had it in me this morning. I procrastinated until nearly 1:30 PM and then I got started.

    Today was my first exeriment with Clif Shots. I took Marathon Chris' advice and went with the Chocolate Energy Gel. It indeed tasted like cake frosting. Because I was feeling sluggish, I consumed three shots over the course of my run. One every three and a half miles or so. And I made it through. Without the Clif Shots, I really don't think I would have made it through it today. I was surprised how well they actually worked.

    All things considered, if this is as challenging as it gets, I should count myself lucky.

    I guess these are small bumps in the road, and I'm still on course. I'm just feeling tired and a little crabby.

    Sunday, July 01, 2007

    What a Week!

    Week # 7 of marathon training is in the bag!

    and I am continuing to feel great and I have no complaints!

    Vacation was awesome! We really had no plans. We had talked about driving a bit further south and taking a ferry to Egmont Key on Wednesday. There are some snorkeling excursions there. We decided Tuesday afternoon that it might be easier to just stay at the beach at the hotel. It was really four days of no plans and staying at the beach.

    Sunset - Wednesday Night

    Thursday morning I set out at about 7:00 AM for my six mile run. I ran the Sand Key Bridge and down to the entrance for Sand Key Park. I turned around and headed back over the bridge. I then headed to the Memorial Causeway. It was a little further than I thought, but I was determined. I ran to the top of the bridge and then turned around and headed back to the hotel. I ended up with 7.36 miles. It was a beautiful, hot morning, and I really enjoyed checking out Clearwater Beach.

    Friday morning I had a four mile run scheduled. I again set off for the Sand Key Bridge and made my turn at the park entrance. Then I ran to Pier 60 and then made my way back to the hotel. My legs were feeling two days of bridge running, and I ran just over four miles.

    I am really enjoyed being out and about for my runs. Exploring. All though I had run there before, there is so much you miss when you are racing. I did not follow the same exact course as the Half Marathon because there is road construction near the beach, which is the reason the race for next January has still not been confirmed. If they have it, I'll be there.

    Saturday morning I was up early to participate in a fund raising car wash for Team in Training. It was fun, but we weren't super busy. Our total take was a little disappointing, but every dollar counts! I had ten miles planned for yesterday, and I finally got them in at 7:30 last night. I was feeling a little tired and I know I had not properly fueled myself, so I took it a little slower than normal, 6.7 MPH pace on the treadmill. And I ended up with 10.4 miles in 1:33:16.

    So why not wait until Sunday? I have been trying and trying to run 100 miles in a calendar month. Yesterday was the last day of the month and I was so close...

    The result?

    As much as I enjoyed vacation, I'm glad to be home and I hope to slip right back into my regular routine tomorrow. I'm sure it will take a few more days to recover from the vacation.

    I am positive I will continue to run and feel strong.