Sometimes, you are just happy to survive the planned run. Today was one of those days. Building up my base miles and run frequency to run a PR at the Peachtree this year.
It’s been a couple of weeks since my last update. Lots to share.
First up, I bought some of the new Skechers running shoes at one of their outlet stores a couple of weeks ago. At first glance, they were very comfortable and really seemed to “energize” my legs over a short 3-4 mile run. If you are not familiar with them, they are designed to promote a mid-foot strike and utilize a compressed-arch in the middle of the shoe that seems to absorb force and direct energy as you run so that you don’t lose so much energy by heel-striking. For the first few runs, I loved them. But then, as my natural stride began to change (I suppose), I started having dead legs (even during short runs) and they were followed by large bruises that showed up just above both knees. At 41, I can’t afford too many injuries, so into the closet the shoes went and there they shall stay. My review of the Skechers shoes: Unless you are already a mid-foot runner, STAY AWAY!
Next, I went on my first trail run in over a year. I know. I am missing out. It was great! I ran about 4 miles with a friend on a course that a local high school cross-country team uses. The scenery was great and I really enjoyed the slowed pace that the rolling hills and turns required. However, the next day brought serious pain in my right hip. By the end of the day, I was limping so badly that I spent the night with a heating pad, an ice pack, an a bottle of Motrin at my side. I knew that I was using a muscle-group that didn’t typically get used on my Silver Comet Trail (rails to trails) runs, but I had no idea that these muscles were this UNUSED. Like everything else I try, it was too much, too fast. I definitely need to ease my way into trail running. Luckily the pain subsided and I am back to my old self.
I tested out my endurance in my long run on Saturday. I was planning to run 8 miles, but considering how the last 10 days had gone, I wasn’t sure if I could (or should). I decided to run slow and run a loop that would keep me within 2 miles of my truck at all times (just in case). Surprisingly, I felt pretty good. I ended up running 8 miles at a 9:27 pace. It was a much slower pace than I have been running, but was the longest distance and time run since my surgery back in November. I was very pleased with the run.
My Kicks and Giggles Virtual Run goes on. If you missed that post, I am plotting my YTD miles in a virtual run from my home in Rockmart, Ga to Indianapolis (to catch a Colts game) and then on to Cleveland (to see the tribe with the World Series). I ran 17 miles each of the last 2 weeks and YTD I am at 137 miles. That puts me 40 miles ahead of last year and well on my way to my goal of 850 miles for the year. I am currently between Kimball and Monteagle, Tennessee. Kimball’s claim to fame appears to be the 2 very large fireworks outlets that a located in town. It is nick-named “Fireworks City”. Oh-joy. As you may know, Monteagle is home to a very treacherous section of I-24 that is very steep and frequently makes many lists of the most dangerous American roadways.
Looks like I have a 700 foot vertical climb ahead.
I better Get Started.
What have you done this year that, at some point in your life you thought you would never be able to do?
What do you have planned for this year that a few months or years ago seemed impossible?
What seems impossible to you now….and when are you going to go do it?
The last couple of weeks have all been about base-building. After having the hernia repair in November, I really didn’t want to push myself too hard. I am trusting that this will be the ONLY hernia repair that I need. I began the year attempting to get back to running 2 or 3 times per week. Then 4 times per week. And I am gradually adding miles back. This will be my longest week of the year so far. I should end somewhere around 18 depending on the way my runs today and tomorrow go.
The leg strength feels good and I don’t have any running-related pain from the surgery. My pace has been somewhat surprising. I am running some of my fastest times ever, and my perceived effort is not that high. I ran 4 miles a few weeks ago at a sub-8:00 pace and I ran a 10k this week at an 8:20 pace.
I registered for the Peachtree Road Race 10K this week. It is held on July 4th in downtown Atlanta and will host about 60,000 runners this year. My qualifying time should put me in group B or C. This race, along with the Atlanta Marathon in October, are the two races that am training for and setting goals for.
If you are following my virtual run to Indianapolis (goodbye Peyton) and Cleveland, you can see the map of my progress at the link below. Currently I am just outside of Cleveland, Tennessee.