Friday, September 14, 2012
I'm an hour and a half away from home, visiting my daughter and grandkids today.
I had to pick up Joe, my 16 year old GS today because we'll be running a 5K together tomorrow. He drives (a cool looking Mustang, too) but just started, and Mom doesn't want him driving that far on interstates and such all by himself, so I decided to pick him up and Grandma will return him after the race.
I'm pretty excited about running with my GS, because Joe is quite an athelete. He runs cross country at school, and has a PR of 21.27 for a 5K, or is that just for 3 miles? Not sure how CC is timed for 3 miles or 5K, but at any rate, he's pretty fast. Let me throw in a brag for his older brother Doug, who is currently away at University of West Florida. Joe tells me Doug holds a record from his High School in the 5K. Joe doesn't know the exact time, but assures me "Doug was the fastest in HS" when he attended.
Joe also lifts weights, and he and I have often lifted together. He's very strong and can benchpress an unbelievable 230 pounds. He only weighs 140 pounds. How cool is that?
So, Joe and I are talking about the race coming up. He's asking about how far it is away from my house. Is it paved or trail, stuff like that. He gets around to asking me how my marathon training is going, and wants to know how my long runs are going, how far am I up to now. I advised him I've done two LRs that were over 17 miles long and my next week run will be at least 18 miles.
His eyes bulge out, his face lights up, he looks genuinely surprised and says "Wow, the longest I've ever run is 7 miles, how can you run that far?" I told him how I run/walk and just keep going. This kid now has a million questions. "How do you know how far you've run, do you have regular routes, do you use a mapping program to find routes?"
I'm kind of surprised at his enthusiasm. You know, teenagers are not well known for getting excited about anything other than their own immediate needs. So I hold on to my thoughts, and just answer the questions he asks.
Later, I ponder our conversation. A little light goes off in my brain. 17 miles, I think. What!?! Did I just say I ran 17 miles in one day, and intend to run 26.2 miles in a month or so?? Hell, yes, 17.5 miles is a long distance! I had just forgotten how far. I've taken myself for granted, and forgotten just how "far" I've come. It took the perspective of a 16 year old athlete to wake me up.
This kid knows about exercise, pushing yourself to the limit, and how exhausting exercise can be. He's looking at his 65 year old (I forgot how old that sounds to a 16 year old, too) grandfather, who just made the wild assertion that he's run 17 plus miles in one day! And he is impressed.
No wonder his eyes bulged out and he was so surprised! That is a long distance! I'd just forgotten, because I've done long runs so many times.
Do not take your accomplishments for granted. You've come so far and worked so hard for it. Be proud of yourself. You may have forgotten, too.
Thanks for reading and have a great day.
Wednesday, September 05, 2012
She says I used to complain about complaining oldsters when I was a young guy, and have now that I've graduated, I've become one with them.
I don't remember it that way - but I'll take her word for it. Supposedly, I used to say things like "What is it with these old people? They excuse themselves from life and fun by complaining about some issue, like a sore back, bad knees or a million other ailments."
I do have some pains. Wait until you get old, you may have some, too.
My left back/shoulder/neck hurts during long runs. My right shoulder gets sore quickly during weightlifting. You can feel a crunching if I rotate that one! Forget about my feet. The podiatrist wanted me to go under the knife 30 years ago, and I didn't - I got orthotics instead. That pain went away. until I started running last year.
I've kept these maladies under control by exercising with moderation. Believe me, when, for some reason or the other, I got away from exercising, those pains get worse! I NEED to exercise. Like the few times I've been on extended vacations and just took a break. Ooh, my lower back and right shoulder get real painful when I stay away from the weights.
So, I'll keep running and keep working out. I NEED to exercise. So my wife doesn't accuse me of being a complainer.
OOh, I just had a little cramp in my wrist... I think it's from typing too much.
And the knee IS a little tender this morning.....
Thanks for reading, and have a great day.
Saturday, September 01, 2012
I'm getting close to my longest distance run again. Did 15.2 miles this morning, previous longest run to date was 17 miles. When I hit that distance, I backed off and restarted the marathon training program. If I had continued I would have peaked my training way too early.
So far, I am injury free for the most part. Some tenderness in the left knee, which will not go away, but certainly does not count as painful. I wear a knee brace and KT Tape for the longer runs. Some shoulder/neck pain, which I have always had. I first noticed this when I went for long motorcycle runs. After a couple of hours in one position, I had sharp pain in my left shoulder/neck. Nothing to stop me though, just a nuisance pain. It stops and becomes a dull pain for a bit, then goes away once I stop doing whatever irritates it. Tried KT tape and that helped a bit.
Today was difficult. Just too dang hot and humid, but I get it, slow down in the heat! Lesson learned.
Had to learn to keep the ego in check and understand a 15 mile long run in the heat that takes over 3 hours to complete is a good thing. I am old and slow, improving as I train. Training runs are not races, and I was slow to learn that. But, I get it now.
Now that my Hal Higdon program is calling for "sorta long" runs mid week, and really long runs on Saturday, I have decided to skip one of my mid week runs. I just can't recover quickly enough for my Saturday long run if I run 4-7-4 miles on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. So I'm trying a Tues and Thurs only run now.
Hoping the weather cooperates and the cool weather arrives on schedule, just as my distances get longer. That would be good.
Thanks for reading, and have a great day.
Thursday, August 23, 2012
Old friends, the next best thing to family. As the years pass, I am more appreciative of my old friends. Peoiple I've know since childhood, or old Navy buddies.
When you make a good bond with someone, time passage does not matter. I've bumped into childhood friends that I haven't seen in almost 50 years. Really. Friends who recognized me instantly. How does that happen?
When I was in CT recently, at a local supermarket with my DW, someone called out "Vic" I turned and there was an old buddy of mine. He recognized me from 50 years absence! I had to do a little more looking, but eventually, there he was - George. He was with his wife, Pat. I recognized her right away, perhaps, 'cuz I paired them up. They had been partners since high school!
When I went to my first Navy reunion, 10 years ago, it was like I'd just seen the guys last week. Amazing how the mind can transition like that. These guys were my brothers. We lived, ate, showered and slept together in the same barracks. Fought with and cared for each other like brothers do.
Today, I got a phone call from Murph, who lives an hour and a half from me. Our old buddy, Bubba,who was with us at our Navy Radio station in Panama Canal Zone was coming to visit family in Florida, and would stop by and see Murph.
So, Murph wanted to know if I was available. Heck yeah, I'm available. So, today I am going to see Murph and Bubba. Bubba and I haven't seen each other in 47 years. Wonder if he'll recognize me?
Cherish the friends you have now who are good to you. You will appreciate them so much more as the years pass.
Thanks for reading and have a great day.
Saturday, August 18, 2012
Had a good nights sleep, and the alarm went off on time at 6 AM.
My granddaughter was visiting, so we woke her up, got her dressed and ready. All my gear was ready, so I did the same, had my coffee and oatmeal and was ready to go.
DW was driving us to the race, which was only 15 minutes away, so we got there in plenty of time to find a nice parking spot. This was a big event. I think over 2000 runners.
I decided to line up at the beginning of the 9 minute per mile pace group. Thought I'd be far enough up front to avoid the slowest runners and the three abreast talkers. Not so.
After the horn went off, I crossed the start line mat almost walking. Good thing I wasn't going for a PR this time, 'cuz the start was very slow. I still had to do a lot of bobbing and weaving around slow runners who had lined up in the 8 minute per mile slot. I'm still learning, so next time, in order to get out there at a decent pace, I will start at the starting line.
So, I run a bit, and I notice a stabbing pain in my left foot big toe. It feels sharp, like I'd stepped on a tack. I wiggled my toes around and the pain came and went. This was not going to work. I had to stop, remove my shoe and sock and probe around to see what was in my toe. Couldn't see anything, so I just scratched around until the pain was gone. Started running again, and all was fine. After the race was over, I found a splinter in my toe! Probably got it while doing all the yard work I did the other day.
The humidity this morning was 89% percent so this was not going to be a fast run for me. At the 1 mile mark my time was 9:53 not so bad for my slow start and splinter removal time. I was really perspiring a lot, and was grateful for my recent hot/humid training runs. They prepared me well. At the 2 mile mark I read 19:13 as I shuffled past. Good enough. Then came the 3 mile mark which read 28 something, and I sped up as much as I could - I like to run across the finish line. First time for me, they said my name as I roared across the mat.
The clock said 29:22 when I passed the finish line, but that was gun time, so I knew I'd be in the 28s somewhere for chip time. That's a great time for me in this kind of weather. I believe my training is paying off.
DW and GD were right there, and got a picture of me, tired but happy.
After the race, there was plenty of food and drinks available. I only had a banana and some water. There was a booth where one could get his body fat calculated. I hesitated, but finally caved in and went for it. Surprised myself, with a 17 percent body fat assessment. Better than I expected.
The organizers, Track Shack, always put on a good run, and this wasn't any exception. I had a great race and made a decent time as well. 28:47 final time. I came in 5th out of 18 runners in my age group.
They even gave me some bling for participating! Cool, huh?
Thanks for reading, and have a great day!
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