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A perfect day

Saturday, November 05, 2011

I had a lot of good things happen today. It was one of those things you can't predict. I took my daughter to swim practice in the morning with the intention to run at the gym because the temps were in the mid 20's at 8 am. The gym wasn't open so I decided to visit the outdoor track of a nearby University. When I got there the sun had not come up and it was still only around 28 degrees F. I took 15 minutes to warm up and by the time I was ready to run the sun had come up.
I was the only person on the track the whole time. Since I had not had time to run the last two days and I had several hours before my daughter needed to be picked up I decided to do a longer run. Surprisingly I had a really fun time running on the track. Because the track was empty I had a very peaceful time running and could changed direction every couple of loops. Having such a smooth, well-maintained surface to run on let me focus on my form and, once I got in a good rhythm, on my thoughts. I felt blessed to be running in the sunshine away from traffic, knowing that I have a couple hours to myself.
Then, seemingly out of nowhere I had what I see as a revelation. It was about goals - goals for my running, goals for my life. As I thought about it some I found they fall into three different categories which are different than most people usually perceive them and than I had usually perceived them. Short term goals, medium term goals and long term goals.
The short term goal was to fully experience the present, my running at that time, writing this blog right now, because the present will not wait, we have to take advantage of it now. Many people thing of short term goals as goals for today or for this week, but those goals are really still out of reach and often we have very little control over our circumstances in even the very near future. The medium-term goals for me are a lot further away then I used to see them, not weeks or a few months, but 2 years away. In two years I want to have run a marathon, done enough strength training to where I can easily throw 50 lb bags of feed and 70 lb hay bales around. I could make those goals with the intention of reaching them in 5 months, but I'd have to work very hard to get there and may not enjoy the process of getting there nearly as much.
Then there are the long-term plans, what I call the 5-year plan. These are goals that I'm very far away from reaching right now and I really have no idea how long it would take me to reach them. In this category falls continuing to raise my daughter, a career change that would be fun to pursue, building long-term friendships. It's kind of like the stock market, you invest but know that it could be at least 5 years or more until you see a significant return. If you want to invest for only a short time the stock market is the wrong place.
The short-term goals I want to immerse myself in while the moment is here. I don't want to get distracted by things in the future that I may not have any control over. The medium- and long-term goals are like my beliefs, I want to hold them lightly, knowing that circumstances or my opinion or my knowledge might change, because I will learn more and have new experiences.
How does that all relate to running, nutrition and overall health? I can learn to go with the flow and enjoy opportunities as they present themselves. But I can also learn to let go of hopes that don't come true knowing that something better may be waiting just around the corner. Only God knows what is coming my way and the more open-minded I am the more likely will I see it.
To get back to running:
I ran 6 miles today at an average heart rate of 131.

Mile 1: 14:03 min. 4.2 mph
Mile 2: 14:57 min. 4.0 mph
Mile 3: 15:30 min. 3.9 mph
Mile 4: 14:30 min. 4.1 mph
Mile 5: 14:10 min. 4.2 mph
Mile 6: 13:20 min. 4.5 mph
avg. speed : 4.1 mph

This run was interesting because I slowed down first and then sped up. I'm wondering if it takes extra effort to run in very cold weather.

In the afternoon we went ice skating. I was able to join a set of group lessons at a discount because there was a lack of interest. I ended up having a 45 minute private lesson because of the lack of students enrolled. I finally learned 3 ways of stopping properly on ice skates and also learned a one-foot spin and a waltz jump. It was a blast and I'm hoping to get the chance to practice once or twice before next Saturday.
By the time my daughter and I were taking a stroll through the mall my legs felt pretty tired. Now sitting down at the computer is a treat.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EJOY-EVELYN 11/6/2011 12:44AM

    Great blog. You've been very mindful in setting some realistic goals for yourself. Congratulations! Many just let their mind wander . . . while I can see you're quite the multitasker. What a great run!

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CHIBIKARATE 11/6/2011 12:42AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Ice Skating and Walking

Thursday, November 03, 2011

The heart rate monitor stayed at home today. I spent an hour practicing with my new ice skates. I haven't owned ice skates since I was a kid and used rental skates only a few times since. I loved getting back into skating. For the first time in my life I have decent skates that have good support and a blade that holds the edge well. I took my chances by getting a relatively inexpensive model from Walmart for $60.00 and was really suprised how comfortable the skates are.
Ice skating did not get my pulse up that much, though, so it's very low-level cardio. I don't think my pulse went much over 115 for most of the time.
I practiced forward, backward, cross-over forward and backward in both directions and skating on one foot, also a two-foot spin. I'm not very good at stopping yet. Skating seems to use all the muscles in the lower leg a lot. Figure skates put the foot in a position where it can move only very little which is quite an adjustment after running and walking in minimalist shoes for so long.
After the ice skating and a lunch break I tried to run on the treadmill and found that my legs were too tired so I did an hour of uphill walking instead.
I've noticed my energy level declining in the afternoons over the last couple of days and my body temperature is lower than normal in the morning. I will start taking iodine again to help my thyroid out a little. Hopefully my legs will feel like running tomorrow. I have not had a trail run this week yet and am starting to miss it, a lot.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARTHASPARKS 11/4/2011 11:18AM

    I loved to ice skate but never could roller skate. If I didn't have osteoporosis, I'd join you!

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HEIDI-25 11/4/2011 9:13AM

    That sounds like a lot of fun! It is great to try new forms of exercise and work different muscle groups. I used to do outdoor ice skating near my home in the winter in a park in the Milwaukee area. It was great!!

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HICKOK-HALEY 11/4/2011 1:15AM

    I haven't Ice Skated for years. I'm glad you found a pair of skates you are happy with. Might be low energy exercise, but a fun one!

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2 workouts and lots of stuff about shoes and feet

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

I went for a walk/jog with the dogs in the morning for a total of one hour with my average pulse at 120. It was nice to be able to run the downhill parts to practice my balance and rhythm.

This afternoon I did 4 miles on the treadmill. As usual incline was at 2, average pulse was 133.

Mile 1: 4.0 mph
Mile 2: 3.9 mph
Mile 3: 3.8 mph
Mile 4: 3.7 mph
average speed 3.85 mph

I finally read the chapters in Phil Maffetone's book about feet and shoes. I had done a fair amount of reading about the benefits of going barefoot and running barefoot or in minimalist shoes and had been running in minimalist shoes for over a year. The information in this book was better than most of what I had read before. The explanation of foot anatomy was very detailed and convinced me to avoid any narrow or tight shoes or shoes with heels as much as possible. It also explained how most foot problems are caused by shoes with lots of support, heel and cushioning.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LEEZERFACE 11/7/2011 9:03PM

    I've been using the Nike Free Runs and my feet feel much better in them. They are light, I don't need socks and you can feel all the muscles in your fee and toes working.

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OHITSKELLY 11/2/2011 3:42AM

    Same here! My feet always hurt/bother me. I have tried many different types of shoes. Thanks for the information and way to go on getting your exercise in!

Have a great day!

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GETFIT2LIVE 11/2/2011 1:25AM

    I just got the book and haven't begun to dig into it too deeply, but it looks like it will be very useful. I'm looking forward to reading more and hearing how your training is going along the way!

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CLAIRE_LEFT_SP 11/1/2011 11:53PM

    Sounds interesting. I'll look into that book - I don't walk correctly, shoes never quite fit... I could use the help. Thanks for mentioning this to us.

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DAIZYSTARLITE 11/1/2011 11:45PM

    Good info....THANKS

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Easy walking day

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

I felt slightly stiff and tired most of the day so limited my exercise to a couple of walks with the dogs. The wind was cold but the sun was out part of the time.
I also enjoyed some time at the horse barn watching the horses run around chasing each other. Tomorrow I'll be back to running.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KKINNEA 11/1/2011 3:23PM

    Sometimes an easy day is what's needed. I'm gearing up for the cold myself!

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Back to my water shoes

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Last night I got to bed around 2 in the morning and then woke up today at 8.
I went for a 4 mile run in my water shoes this afternoon and ran the same road as 2 days ago in the Vibrams. I did stumble once, so it may have had something to do with the surface and/or running so slow.
I went for one hour and did exactly 4 miles at average heart rate of 130. I think I'll make all my runs 1 hour long from now on except long runs. If I include warmup and cool down that will be a total of 90 minutes. I may not run every day, depending on time and weather.
Now it's pouring rain so not sure what I'll do tomorrow.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HOUNDLOVER1 11/1/2011 12:38PM

    Martha, thank you, I'm a work in progress. It took me a whole year to get this far. :)

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MARTHASPARKS 11/1/2011 12:26PM

    I admire your energy and commitment to running and physical activity! Your easy days are tougher than my hard days!

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