Sunday, June 07, 2009
My week started in Kentucky, at Lake Cumberland. We dropped our daughter off with her grandparents; she was very excited to be spending the week there. We left after I finished work on Sunday and returned Monday night.
I was able to bring the exercise bike back in the car. I tried it out a couple times last week and I got off the bike both times dripping with sweat, so it must have done something! I warm up for about 5 minutes and then do intervals the length of a song on my Ipod. It's not nearly as fun as running, but it is very easy on my achilles tendons and seems to be a good workout. I felt great after both sessions.
The Indpls Air Show was Friday, Saturday, and today. I worked some long days for a great cause and saw some terrific performances. The weather was very nice, but I wasn't able to run due to my schedule.
The bad thing about traveling is the limited choices for food, especially when you are in a hurry. That's my excuse for having a less than stellar performance at the table last week.
I ran only once last week (8.3 miles), which was wonderful for my injured achilles tendons. I'm not freaking out about it, because my marathon training doesn't start until the first week in July. I'm hoping a reduction in miles will help me get over some lingering pain going back to the half marathon.
I did not strength train last week, which I'm disappointed in myself about. No excuses, I just didn't get it done. My eating wasn't so great, not much running, and no strength training. That will change starting tomorrow.
This week will be better, but I hope the rest did some good. The photo was taken at Lake Cumberland last Monday. I was Evelyn's over-stuffed pillow.
Monday, May 25, 2009
On 5/17, the day after I ran my half marathon, I signed up for the Outer Banks (OBX) Marathon in North Carolina. The race will be run on 11/8/09.
I wanted to run this race a couple years ago, but life got in the way. Needless to say, I'm very excited to have registered for my first marathon.
My weight is back down in the 180s (barely, at 189). I need to lose 9 or 10 more pounds before the marathon. I know I can do it; I just need the discipline to keep myself from rationalizing that "anything I want is ok since I'm running a marathon". I also need to cross-train at an even greater intensity in the next 6 months. My parents also have a recumbent bike that they are going to let me use. I think the bike will help me increase my aerobic fitness without any unnecessary wear and tear on my joints.
I've been very tired since my half marathon and have only run a few times since then. Today was a perfect example. I intended to run, but by the time we got back from visiting my brothers, aunt, uncle, and grandparents in the cemetery, the day was almost over. I was very tired and decided that the workout would not be as beneficial as the rest. So I'll try again tomorrow.
I have the Runner's World Guide to Road Racing that I bought a couple years back. I started reading it and have some ideas for a training plan that will suit my age, injury status, and training goals. I'm anxious to start my training and looking forward to lots of good advice from my seasoned marathon friends from Spark.
My marathon goals are a) finish, and b) finish in under 4 hours.
I'm looking forward to adding "marathoner" to my running resume!
Saturday, May 16, 2009
I had high hopes for this race, but wasn't sure about many things, such as the weather, my hip, my achilles tendons, and those darn hills at 7.5 and 9.5 miles. This is a very challenging course in only its 2nd year.
I live only about a half mile or so from the starting line, so I got up this AM and had breakfast of Go-Lean Crunch and fresh berries. I took my vitamins and supplements with a little OJ and was out the door. The nice thing was that I could use my own toilet instead of waiting in line. I got to the starting line 10 minutes before race time.
As you may recall, I hate the start of any race, but the half is easier to start than the 5k. I had a plan based on heat, humidity, terrain, and the like. It's the first time in my life that I ever put that much thought into how I wanted to race. I was going to share it before the race, but I didn't want to jinx myself.
Mile 1- I wanted to be more aggressive and push the envelope, just in case the weather got horrible later or the achilles got worse. Music- "Just Like Paradise", by David Lee Roth. Time- 7:54; the first sub-8-minute mile I have ever run in a half marathon.
Mile 2- starting to feel better and get into a groove. Music- "Rush", by Aly & AJ (hey, I have pre-teen daughters!). Time- 7:36. I'm trying to control my excitement and my pace.
Mile 3- still feeling good and challenging the course. Music- "Jump", by Van Halen. Time- 7:28; the fastest mile of the day. I'm trying to remind myself that I still have 10 miles to go and need to slow down.
Mile 4- laughing while listening to tunes as I try to keep moving. Music- "Rebel Yell", by Billy Idol. Time- 7:44; still moving along at a better than expected pace.
Mile 5- first gel at 4.85 miles; disappointed that I didn't take my powergel at 4.5 miles, like I planned. Music- "Baby I Love Your Way/Freebird", by Will to Power. Time- 7:45; watch your form and just keep your feet moving.
Mile 6- feeling a kick of energy from the powergel. Music- "The Boys of Summer", by Don Henley. Time- 7:59; still able to crank out sub-8-minute miles.
Mile 7- I can see the hills and know they're waiting to kick the crap out of me. I need to keep moving; I might need the time later in the race. Music- "Shut Up and Drive", by Rihanna. Time- another 7:45. I saw a buddy of mine and high-fived him as I ran by. Someone was passing out beer and I thought of our own Erin at Boston. Big smile on my face.
Mile 8- I'm slowing down. The hill is winning. I started slowing at about 7.5 miles. The smile is gone. I'm getting my @ss handed to me by that hill. I'm concentrating on form and wondering where in the he-- is the water station? Music- "Vertigo", by U2. Time- 8:07; still ahead of my goal pace of 8:20. This mile I ran for my wife, Rhonda. If she can handle the pain of childbirth, I can run up the @#$% hill.
Mile 9- I'm remembering how much cross-training I've done in the last several months and how much stronger I am because of it. I can do this. Unfortunately, I'm also crunching numbers to see how slow I can go and still make my sub-1:50 goal. Music- "Walk Away", by Kelly Clarkson. Time- 8:21; definitely slowing down and feeling the humidity, breathing exhaust fumes from cars in the other lane, and needing some water. Hanging on for dear life; most of this mile was on hills. I ran this mile for Evelyn; how could Daddy look her in the eye and tell her that he let the hill beat him?
Mile 10- anytime I run a half, there's this mental barrier I break through whenever I get into double digits. I know there's only a 5k left. But the hills have started again and I'm fading. Music- "You Dropped A Bomb on Me", by the Gap Band. Time- 8:38; folding like a cheap suit. I ran this mile for my friend, Patty. There was some adversity on this mile, but like her, I stuck it out. I still believe I can pull this off.
Mile 11- I'm thinking I can make my goal even if I slow down. Or I can try to pick things back up. I ran this mile for my friend, Sharon, who continues to get stronger and faster. I remember her writing something not too long ago about how your cross-training will help you later in a race when your legs are starting to go. That's all I thought about; keep moving and rely on your training and experience. Music- "Heartbeat", by Don Johnson (what are you laughing at, I love the 80s?!) Time- 8:10; I'm not dead yet.
Mile 12- small hills, twists, and turns. How bad do you really want this? Music- "Suspicious Minds", by Elvis Presley. It's one of my all-time favorites. Only a mile left; I wonder if I will see Rhonda? She ran the 5k at 7 months pregnant. I'm ready to be done. I run this mile for my friend, Bekka, who's been injured recently and is just returning to running. If she was here, her spirit and sheer guts and motivation would kick into overdrive. So she's my mantra for the 12th mile. Time- 8:22; not far off my goal pace. I'm going to make it!
Mile 13- no more hills (or water). My heart rate is 197. I'm 50 years old. Will I finish, or have a heart attack? Music- "Sweet Freedom", by Michael McDonald. This mile I ran for my friend, Mary, whose enthusiasm for the whole training and race experience got me to sign up for this half at a late date. Time- 8:08; faster than my fastest mile last year. I'm sorry I didn't run a sub-8-minute mile for you at the end, Mary. I did try.
The last tenth was a sprint; there's nothing like seeing the finish line to make you feel better. Music- "The Power of Love", by Huey Lewis and the News. I'm running as fast as I can. My heart rate is 200, way past the red line. My smile is off the charts. I ran this last stretch for Ethan, our unborn son. Look at your old man laugh as he crosses the finish line! And 12 minutes faster than last year!
I could barely stop to have my chip removed. I walked for a few minutes and listened to "Walking in Memphis", by Mark Cohn. Rhonda is there hugging and kissing me. I'm soaking wet and my deodorant is long gone. I have not been this happy in a long, long time. A little girl in front of us asks her mommy if she won the race. Her mom says, "no honey." I promptly inform the little girl that her mommy and the people who finished were all winners.
Here are the stats I pulled from the website:
bib number: 581
location: Fishers, IN
overall place: 365 out of 2765
division place: 18 out of 122
gender place: 300 out of 1344
I can't thank so many of you enough for all the kindness, consideration, support, and encouragement that you've shown to me and my family in the last couple years. I am so, so grateful. I consider each of you a blessing in my life.
I'm still going to run that marathon this year. My next goal for the half marathon is to run 13 consecutive, sub-8-minute miles.
I'm sorry this was so long, but at my age, I had to write it all down before I forgot it all!
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