Thursday, December 15, 2011
The days are just too short to run outside sometimes. I walked dogs, went ice skating for 1/2 hour and then after doing all the chores it was dark.
So I did another treadmill run. 3 miles, average heartrate 134, incline 2.
Mile 1: 4.1 mph
Mile 2: 4.1 mph
Mile 3: 3.9 mph
total time: 44:29 min., slight improvement over yesterday
Skating was fun. I'm getting better control of my right outside edge. Nothing exciting but it feels smoother and better balanced.
I hope to be able to do some horseback riding and jogging with my horse tomorrow and a long run on Saturday.
Monday, December 12, 2011
I spent almost 90 minutes on the ice today. My balance is getting better, but it sometimes feels like 2 steps forward, 3 steps back. Today they had very nice classical music playing at the ice rink, slow and relaxing, perfect to practice slow, flowing movements. I'm finding some muscles that are worked more while skating than while running, espcially glutes.
I realized that I need to do more stretching to be able to do some of the figure skating exercises.
Maybe I'll join my daughter for ballet classes again in January.
I spent the afternoon reminding my horse Blue Eagle how to do some basic maneuvers on the ground for treats. She was very motivated to figure out what I wanted for carrot slices and offered all kinds of new behaviors including shaking her head, lifting one foot, stepping over tires. I'm hoping to have time more regularly for horse activities in the coming months and take Blue jogging regularly while the roads are not icy.
The days are getting so short that it gets harder to fit in as many outdoor activities as I like but only 2 more weeks until winter solstice.
Sunday, December 11, 2011
Today was my first run in freezing temperatures. I decided to try a pair of wrestling shoes that I had bought a year ago because they have several qualities of minimalist shoes but are like high-top sneakers in that they cover the ankle and are warmer. The sole is fairly flexible and thin, they have zero heel-drop and no arch support. The material is suede which I can waterproof and I can wear them with an inexpensive pair of gaiters that keep me warm and dry up to the knees. By going one size smaller with a men's size I have enough room in the heel to wear warm wool socks in them. The price was around $40.00 which is still much less than minimalist boots which are hard to find and usually priced well over $100.00
This is a big improvement over running in my winter boots, mostly because the weight is so much lower but also because they are not as bulky.
There are a lot of different models of wrestling shoes and I'm sure this would be a good choice for many minimalist runners in the winter. On ice they can be fitted with my Due North winter/ice spikes easily.
Today I ran 3 miles in them and was quite comfortable. It took me just over 45 minutes to run 3 miles with average heart rate of 133, partly because of the cold, partly because the wrestling shoes are still heavier than what I'm used to, although not heavier than traditional running shoes.
Yesterday I made some improvement in my ice skating. I had asked 3 different instructors for help with changing direction on one skate which seemed surprisingly difficult. Most recommend moving my shoulders into the turn more, leaning more onto one edge etc. but I was not getting much better and they couldn't tell me why.
Yesterday I was watching some other skaters and it looked like they were "steering" with the front of their skate, with the weight on the front part of the skate, something that they weren't even aware of. That was my missing element. As soon as I started focusing on steering with the front of the skate I was able to switch direction fairly easily. Yeah! Biomechanics for dummies again.
In any case, if I practice this a little more I can progress to doing spins and three-turns much easier. This is going to be so much fun.
Friday, December 09, 2011
I ran for exactly 1 hour and went 4.3 miles, the best run since starting the Maffetone method. The weather was beautiful and sunny, in the 40's and I did a couple loops through town, about half on asphalt, half on gravel, very little wind, very little elevation.
I will count this as my long run.
Now off to the barn to do a little horseback riding while the sun is still up.
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