New shoes

I bought a new pair of Nike Air Structure Triax tonight before class. Along with them I bought Matthew his own ChampionChip in case he runs the IBM Uptown 10K on Sunday. For class we had to run the Marshes (read this as “run hills”). Why is it that after all this training I’m feeling weaker and weaker? OK, it was hot out, but still I was huffing and puffing just doing one set. All I can do it blame it on aging. BTW, the muscle in the back of my left thigh was “whispering” to me and telling me that it was tight tonight. So there’s another thing to wonder about. Left ankle muscle, and now left back thigh muscle. Sheesh.

Signed up for IBM Uptown Classic 10K

I just spent $27.75 and signed up for the IBM Uptown Classic 10K race next weekend. It’s the first race of the Austin Distance Challenge, but I’m not going to be competing in the Challenge this year because Chicago Marathon conflicts with the next race. This will be the first time in two years that I’ve not done it.

“RunTex to RunTex” long run

This 20, 22 or 24 mile long run has become famous, or maybe better said infamous. I planned to complete 22 miles. This is the last long run before tapering. When I woke up it was about 80 degress and the relative humdity was 90%. This was not good. Originally this run was from the RunTex store at Gateway Plaza to another RunTex store downtown on Riverside. Then it was only about 12-15 miles. However, over the years it’s morph’ed into one of the most difficult long runs. The reason is that now after completing about 16 miles it heads into the south Austin hills. These are not especially big hills, but by that time you’re beat and the hills just make it impossible (at least for me that is). One time in the past it was raining which made me walk (this was several years ago) and another my ankle started to hurt so I cut it short (this was last January). So today was no different. At mile 16 I started to walk the hills. I had nothing left in my muscles. I could barely move my legs because they were so stiff and full of cr*p. I finally arrived at the mile 18 water stop and had to make a decision, go left for 20 or right for 22 or 24. I sat on the curb near the water stop for a minute and thought. Finally I decided to go left – do only 20 and back down from my plan. For a while after that I slogged away running and finally when I got back on the Town Lake trail I had no more juice. I was kaput. I walked the last mile back to RunTex. I was so out of it or depressed I never stopped my watch or heartrate monitor when I got to RunTex. Also luckily there was a nice runner named Debbie who gave me a ride back to my car at RunTex Gateway. Thanks Debbie!

Beware all you runners and understand that a half-marathon is a “run in the park’ compared to the beast known as the marathon. Although it’s twice the distance it’s ten times the effort requiring unbelievable physical and mental fortitude and just pure guts to complete. I’m still amazed that I’ve been fortunate enough to complete three in my lifetime. And Chicago is the next one on October 22. Wish me luck, I’ll need it…
P.S. The ankle held up OK today and wasn’t a nuisance, but there was so much else going on that it might have been drowned out by the sheer physical implosion that was my running today.

Damn ankle

I had to run 6 miles today, but could only make about 1.5. My left ankle has flaired up again. There is tightness and a burning sensation on the muscle on the right. This is just great. I’m a few days in front of the longest run (22-24 miles) on Saturday and I’m out of commission. This whole summer has been so tough on me.

“12 mile Progressive Pace” long run

Today we were to run 12 miles with each mile being faster that the previous. This is nothing new, I’ve done it many times before. We were to start at our 10K pace plus 2 minutes and 15 seconds which for me now is starting at 10:30/M. Then each mile is to be 15 seconds faster until the last three miles should be: two at 10K pace, and the last one as fast as you can run. Well when I walked out of the house to drive to the start the temperature was hot (about 78 degrees) and very humid. Not good running weather. It was even sprinkling then raining as I drove out of the development and down MoPac. However that all stopped by the time I got there. Nevertheless it was still humid. The first mile was too slow at 11:05 and the next few were too fast at 9:45. By the time I got to the halfway point I was beat and my heart rate shows it. The heat and humidity had gotten to me. So I just decided to run the last half ignoring my pace. Even that was still hard. Halfway back I stopped once for water and a stop light or two, and to walk the last hill. I completed the 12 miles in 1:58:32 or about 9:50/M.

Mile Expected Actual Slow/Fast
1 10:30 11:05 too slow
2 10:15 9:34 too fast
3 10:00 9:35 too fast
4 9:45 9:17 too fast
5 9:30 8:59 too fast
6 9:15 9:22 too slow
7 9:00 10:10 too slow
8 8:45 9:11 too slow
9 8:30 9:20 too slow
10 8:15 9:45 too slow
11 8:15 9:46 too slow
12 FAST 10:12 too slow

This is not very good, but I don’t care and at least I completed it. Afterwards a few of us went to Deep Eddy Pool (a first for me) to cool down in the water and talk, which was nice.

Slowly getting better

My shoulder is slowly getting better, but I’m still having some pain and weakness when I lift my right arm up especially above my shoulder. I stopped taking pain killer and at least it’s not throbbing anymore. Moving it makes me tense up. Simple things like turning on a light switch which isn’t even above shoulder height is bad. Driving the car and turning the steering wheel sharply, for example, when parking is tough. I’m still using my left arm to help me move my right one. For example, I tried to draw a picture on a whiteboard at work today and I had to use my left to lift my right so it could draw in some details. You never know how much you use something until every movement causes it to scream in your brain – ouch!

Ouch! Double Ouch! Triple Ouch!

I slipped and fell while running today. This was no little slide. In the middle of an easy 6 mile run while listening to my iPod I crashed. I was running up a set of wooden ramps. It had been raining so the wood was damp. As I turned right at a corner to go up the next ramp my feet went out from under me. I reached my out to break my fail with my right arm and slammed it down. Yup, directly against my old arthritic right shoulder joint. The pain was instantaneous and severe. Ouch! The agony, the pain, oh my gosh, it was bad. I got to my feet but couldn’t run. The pain was so bad I had to walk. Double Ouch! I held my right arm in place with my left arm like a sling. I could barely breathe. My shoulder was just throbbing and throbbing. Triple Ouch! I walked for several minutes then very slowly ran home. It ached all the way home. Now it continues to ache. I’ve taken Advil twice today to help. I’m using my left arm to move my right. Typing had been difficult. I’m not looking forward to trying to sleep. I hope this doesn’t have any long term repercussions.

San Antonio Half-Marathon

Matthew stopped by this weekend and proposed that we run the San Antonio Half-Marathon on November 12. Sounds very good, so he’s starting his practice. It’ll be two weeks after the Chicago Marathon for me. This is a big deal for him, and quite a long run for him. I gave him some Internet links to training programs and things that he could do to prepare and learn more. Now he needs to get started and keep healthly. So I told him that I’ll check back on October 20th to see if we should sign up online. Oh, and that we might need to ask Beth’s parents if we should stay with them on Saturday the day before or a motel room otherwise.