May 2012 – Running in the Rear View Mirror

Running In May

I am making fantastic progress on my 2012 running goals ūüôā

Summary

  • Miles Run: 152.1
  • Days Run: 24
  • Days Off: 7
  • Longest Run: 13.3 5/15/12
  • Fastest Run: 8:13 5/27/12 – Home 5K Course
  • Best Week: ¬†50.88 week ending 5/27/12
Most notable run 5/30/12 finished 13.10 in 01:48:59 an 8:19 pace for the half marathon in a training run – details here

Shoes Run In

  • Nike Free 4.0 v2 – Absolutely love them, I ran 50 miles in them the first week I had them with NO problems. They just fit my feet and running style.
  • Saucony Kinvara 2 – Have been retired to walking and mowing the lawn.
  • New Balance MT110 – Are in the closet until I start running trails again.
  • Newton Gravity – Are in the closet, they required too much work (shoe surgery) to make them fit my feet correctly and so that I didn’t keep rubbing my ankle raw. It is too bad because I really like the Newtons.

Races Run

None
Next Scheduled race is:  Rail Trail Half Р6/24/12 РJust have to send in the entry fee

Summary: While I haven’t raced this month, I consider it a great month! On 5/17 I got to talk with the local Newton representative about my form and my shoes. So I know what improvements I have to make with my form.

I found the shoes that work for me better than any have in recent memory and went back to my old standby – Nike. I have more gear and have worn more Nike shoes than any other brand and I keep coming back to them for a reason – they just work for me.

This month in a word: Great

Weight

I ended April at 155 and today 5/31 am at 153 still loosing about two pounds in a month – it doesn’t sound like a lot, but the reality is that it is in that 155 is MY GOAL WEIGHT, so it is a huge deal! I am under my goal weight. I really believe that the number of long runs and mileage that I am putting in is getting the weight down.

With better weather on the horizon, I have a feeling that I will be hitting my goal weight and staying between 150-155 which is where TheWife would like me to stay and I think that is a good weight for me to be at.

43 pounds lost since June 17, 2011

Injuries

No real injuries this month, other than the Newton’s rubbing my right ankle raw and causing the dreaded bloody sock. ¬†The right knee is not complaining very often, but I have to be careful to give it rest and a chance to recuperate after a long or hard run. Just have to keep training smart ūüôā

Run Blogging

Top Ten Blog Posts for March – based on pageviews
  1. Tommie Copper Sleeve Review ‚Äď First¬†Impressions
  2. First Run in Asics Gel Blur 33 ‚Äst2/16/12
  3. My Transition Plan to Minimalist Running Shoes
  4. Tommie Copper ‚Äď Is¬†Working
  5. Wordless Wednesday ‚Äst2/1/12
  6. Newton Gravity‚ÄďAfter 50¬†Miles
  7. Running Log Spreadsheet Template
  8. Narrowed the Choices Down to 5 Running Shoes
  9. Zensah Compression Socks ‚Äď Follow-up¬†Review
  10. Saucony Kinvara 2 ‚Äď After 50¬†Miles

I have made a couple of decisions and we will see how they turn out over the course of the next month. But I should be doing a lot more blogging and getting back to being who I am really am.

Reviews

One of the things that I really like to do is to review new gear. Whether I buy something myself or provided a product to review, I enjoy trying it out and seeing if it works as advertised or not. But more importantly – whether I like it or not and why. Blogging about running related products makes me think differently about what I am using – which is a good thing.

I have done the following product reviews this month:

  • ¬†Nike Free 4.0 v2 ‚Äď After 50¬†Miles¬†– Personal Purchase
  • First Run in Nike 4.0 Free¬†Rides¬†– Personal Purchase
  • Zensah Compression Socks ‚Äď Follow-up¬†Review¬†– Media Sample
  • Newton Gravity ‚Äď Running Shoe¬†Surgery¬†– Personal Purchase

I didn’t have many opportunities to review products this month, but that is okay, I enjoyed just focusing on my running for a change.

FTC Disclaimer ‚Äď Unless indicated by {Personal Purchase} I was provided products from these companies free of charge, to review them on my blog. I received no monetary or other forms of compensation to do the review. My opinions about each product are my honest observations, based upon my experience while using the product.

Running Goals

A slight change to my goals – is to make sure that I am enjoying running and not letting it become too much like work.

Good progress, while I worked hard at my running, I didn’t allow it to become work. I still look forward to my runs and don’t get too wound up about them if they are not quite what I am looking for that day ūüôā

This year my big goals are:

  1. Run 1,200 miles – I am ahead of schedule having a total of 672.9 miles through 5-months.
  2. Run a sub 20:00 5K  РThis will be very tough to do, but for now I am working on my mileage base and not worrying too much about speed, in training runs last month. I am just getting ready for the 1/2 Marathon on June 24th.
  3. Get through 2012 without any significant down time or injuries (running related or others).  Just some aches and strains so far
  4. My unadvertised goals from the start of the year are to be able to finish a half-marathon. Ran a 01:48:59 for a training run, so I am way ahead of schedule for this one.
  5. Run a few trail races when the weather gets better – I just haven’t run any trails, since I found the young lady with a broken leg, I don’t know if that affected me subconsciously or what, but I need to get back to my trail running – I do miss it.

My long-term goal will be to run the 2013 Marine Corps Marathon. I finished the 1983 Marathon and to run/finish Marine Corps again 30 years later would be very cool. This is one of the major goals that I have in mind for my running and it would be even more fantastic if I could qualify for Boston that same day. Therefore, I am doing a 2 year work-up to the Marathon distance, just to see if my knee will hold up.

The reality is that

May was another great month for running. I hope that I finally got my shoe miseries sorted out and that the Nike Free 4.0 are as great at 300-500 miles as they were in their first 50. There is just something about how I run in them that makes me feel comfortable running in them.

Instead of Running on a Rainy Day

On Tuesday I took the day off from running, even though I was scheduled to do my long run!

It seems that I have a big aversion to blinding flashes of white light and enjoy hearing then big booms after the white light fads, instead of “going towards the light”. We experienced some pretty long thunder showers during most of the day – even when they were not in the general vicinity, I could hear them in the distance, which wasn’t real reassuring when thinking about going for a run.

Call me a wimp or whatever you like, but I don’t like running when I hear thunder around me and like it even less when I see lightning. Besides I had just run a 50 mile week and my legs were pretty tired and needed the day off, instead of another run (It worked because when I ran my long run yesterday, it was an amazing run – which I wrote about here).

So what did I do on a rainy day

Wrote a blog post (of course)

The neighbors graciously offered to give about 20 pounds of rhubarb on Sunday. Which we used to make a non-alcoholic rhubarb cordial and rhubarb chutney on Monday & Tuesday. We drink these non-alcoholic fruit cordials in place of soda Рwe know exactly what is in them, which is a good thing in my mind.

This was the first of 4 batches of rhubarb processing.

Then TheWife made:  home-made pumpkin muffins (the only thing I help with those is eat them), sausage pasta sauce for spaghetti for supper and French loaf bread in the breadmaker.

Now you see why I HAVE to run so much!!! ūüôā

TheWife is a GREAT cook and makes at home 80% of what we eat. Yes I admit it – I am spoiled.

By the way this is part of the reason, for not running Tuesday, this was after 4:00 P.M. the next day and the garden was still partially underwater.

This is what happens when we have a heavy rain and thundershower day.

It becomes an inside work day.

Unfortunately or fortunately,we have another 50 pounds or so of rhubarb that I will be getting Friday or Saturday, so we get to do it all over again, during the next rainy day.

Yes there is a lot of work to putting up the results of your gardening and gleaning of produce from those who do not use it, but it is well worth the effort, when you sit down and have it later.

Also it is a helluva lot more healthy for you – at least that is my opinion.

Recovery Run and A Neat Trip 5-31-12

Today I wanted to run around a 9:30 pace for the 5.0 miles, got done with a 9:30, so my sense of pacing is starting to get better :-).

As I was running along a fairly level stretch of the dirt road down back, it just jumped right up and tripped me? As I was running along, thinking about something or other, suddenly I found myself automatically going into a tuck and role and then back on my feet again. It was one of those classic fall routines. When I went back to look and see what tripped me it was a flat piece of wood sticking ever-so slightly out of the ground!

I did the quick check hands had some dirt punctures, brushed some dirt off my shoulders, checked the iPhone (still working, not broken), everything seemed to be like it was supposed to be, except my heart was pounding from the little adrenaline boost. I still haven’t figured out how I got tripped by the piece of wood, but I went down so quickly, that I didn’t even know it until I was getting back on my feet :-).

All I did was dust myself off and continued the run – a little more aware of what was in front of my feet.

Other than that it was a pretty uneventful run and I just worked on my form to make sure that I was getting a little more air between my feet and the ground.

Just gotta hate it when the road jumps up and trips you like that for no reason. ūüėČ

Processing the Fruits of the Garden

On Tuesday I took the day off from running, even though I was scheduled to do my long run!

It seems that I have a big aversion to blinding flashes of white light and enjoy hearing then big booms after the white light fads, instead of “going towards the light”. We experienced some pretty long thunder showers during most of the day – even when they were not in the general vicinity, I could hear them in the distance, which wasn’t real reassuring when thinking about going for a run.

Call me a wimp or whatever you like, but I don’t like running when I hear thunder around me and like it even less when I see lightning. Besides I had just run a 50 mile week and my legs were pretty tired and needed the day off, instead of another run (It worked because when I ran my long run yesterday, it was an amazing run – which I wrote about¬†here).

So what did I do on a rainy day

Wrote a blog post (of course)

The neighbors graciously offered to give about 20 pounds of rhubarb on Sunday. Which we used to make a non-alcoholic rhubarb cordial and rhubarb chutney on Monday & Tuesday. We drink these non-alcoholic fruit cordials in place of soda Рwe know exactly what is in them, which is a good thing in my mind.

Rhubarb ready for processing

 

This was the first of 4 batches of rhubarb processing.

End Result 16 pints of Cordial and 4 Jars of Chutney

 

Then TheWife made:  home-made pumpkin muffins (the only thing I help with those is eat them), sausage pasta sauce for spaghetti for supper and French loaf bread in the breadmaker.

Making bread in the breadmaker

 

Everything done

 

Now you see why I¬†HAVE¬†to run so much!!! ūüôā

TheWife is a GREAT cook and makes at home 80% of what we eat. Yes I admit it – I am spoiled.

By the way this is part of the reason, for not running Tuesday, this was after 4:00 P.M. the next day and the garden was still partially underwater.

This is what happens when we have a heavy rain and thundershower day.

It becomes an inside work day.

Unfortunately or fortunately,we have another 50 pounds or so of rhubarb that I will be getting Friday or Saturday, so we get to do it all over again, during the next rainy day.

Yes there is a lot of work to putting up the results of your gardening and gleaning of produce from those who do not use it, but it is well worth the effort, when you sit down and have it later.

Also it is a helluva lot more healthy for you – at least that is my opinion.

Sub 01:50:00 1/2 Marathon Training Run!

WOW!!!!!

That is how I will start this blog post.

I made one of my goals for this year and did it in a training run – I wanted to break 01:50:00 for a 1/2 Marathon and did it this morning by running a 01:48:59. I know that this is not official, but it is close enough for me.

Here are the splits for the run:

My second mile was my fastest at 7:40 pace, but I also had another sub 8:00 between miles 9-10 at 7:57, which was really surprising to me, usually at that point I am dragging butt, however, I felt really good the whole run. The only problem was between miles 2  & 3, when my left quad started to cramp up (not used to running that fast) and I had to slow down to try to work it out. I thought for a little while that I was going to have to cut the run short, but it worked itself out.

The weather was great to start out low 50’s, overcast and a 5-10 mph wind in face for the first 6 miles, the sun started to come out about mile 7 and then was in its glory for the last 4.0 miles. I definitely had a great sweat going.

Except for the 8:53 mile, the rest were all sub 8:30 pace!!!!

All I can say is GREAT run ūüôā and yes the Nike Free 4.0 are making a difference.

I never thought that I would be running this fast again or this far, so it is very satisfying and no I am not bragging about how fast I am. This is to show how far someone can come in a year if they put their mind to it and are willing to do the work.

Where the Food Comes From

One of the reasons that I run is to be healthy and another part of being healthy is how and what you eat. In fact, what you put into your body is more important than anything else that you can do for your health in my opinion. It is even more important than how much I run which for me is saying a lot ūüėČ

With the costs of food going through the roof ¬†(but there is no inflation – just the food packaging getting smaller, at a higher price) and knowing how the food is being grown, has become more and more important to us. So we have increased our gardens’ size a bit over the past year. Notice that I said gardens ;-).

Spring Pea Garden – nothing but Peas

Continue reading “Where the Food Comes From”

Effort is There – Speed Isn’t 5-28-12

I got busy and almost forgot to post my running log today ;-).

Monday’s are becoming my rest or shorter run days or so it seems. The schedule is working out that I am doing my long runs mainly on Tuesday now, so I will just go with it for a while, one of those be flexible things I guess.

Today I was just going to run an easy 3.1 and not worry about the time. Once I got out there I started feeling pretty good and picked it up pretty good during the second mile – almost getting to race pace – that was surprising. However, when I realized how fast I was going, I backed it down a couple of notches and just ran comfortably.

Splits 5-28-12

I am getting closer to that magic 8:00 minute average pace for my shorter training runs and I am feeling pretty good about that. The only thing is my mind believes that the effort that I am putting out, should be a 7:00 minute pace, not 8:00 and doesn’t believe how much harder I have to work to go faster now a days. The speed is no where near what it used to be for the same level of perceived effort. ūüôā Continue reading “Effort is There – Speed Isn’t 5-28-12”

Nike Free 4.0 v2 – After 50 Miles

Nike Free 4.0

What can I say – I ran 50 miles in the Nike Free 4.0 V2 this week!

Never in my running career have I run 50 miles the first week I have had a new pair of running shoes. Never.

That says a lot right there about these running shoes.

Here is the link to the Nike Free Run site.

Disclaimer: I purchased these shoes at Dick’s Sporting Goods on 5/21/12 with my own money.

Construction / Fit

The Nike Free 4.0 just fit me right. Continue reading “Nike Free 4.0 v2 – After 50 Miles”

AVR – Week In Review 5/27/12

Today’s Run

I ran around noon today, so the temps were close to 80, but there was a nice breeze. I needed 5.0 miles to go over 50 miles for the week, so I did the Notta Road O/B.

I wasn’t going to go all that fast, but when I got off the dirt road I picked it up pretty well (even though I had to stop and dig a larger rock out of the sole of my left foot, the tap, tap, tap was driving me crazy.

By the time I got back to the dirt road again, I admit it, I was tired and slowed down a bit too much. However, I got the 5.0 done in 42:30, which is an 8:30 pace, so I am satisfied.

I was surprised that I had enough energy/strength left to still run faster than my average pace on a week, when I have run further than I have in a long, long time.

Running Summary This Week

RunLog Week of 5/27/12

Three things Running

  1. New Shoes:¬†Last Sunday, when I was performing surgery on my Newton’s, TheWife told me to just go get a new pair of shoes, she was tired of me hacking away on the shoes and my ankle looking bruised or bloodied. I didn’t argue wither – when TheWife says it is okay to get a new pair of running shoes, I don’t argue ;-)After some hemming and hawing, I ended up getting the Nike Free 4.0 v2 at Dick’s Sporting Goods. To say that I like these shoes is an understatement! The first week I have them I have run further with less aches and pains than I have in a long time. In fact when I looked back over my records, I have never run 50 miles in a pair of new running shoes the first week that I had them. Going over 50 miles also means that I have to do my “after 50 miles review of the shoe, tonight or tomorrow :-).
  2. Over 50 Miles for the week:¬†It felt great to go over 50 miles for the week. I know that I haven’t been over 50 miles in a week for at least 25 years. ¬†I came pretty close to not doing the 10 yesterday, but when I did, I knew that I would do 5.0 today to get 50 and I did. I have a feeling that I will go back to 35-40 next week, just don’t want to beat myself up too much too quickly.
  3. Nike Plus GPS App fixed: For some reason or other I was having a lot of problems with my Nike Plus iPhone App and made a comment on Twitter that I was having problems. In a few minutes @NikePlus tweeted back and we worked through several different possible solutions of which none worked. They requested that I call in, which I did and after a bit of trying different things, we decided to delete and re-install the program. After that it worked great!The people at NikePlus/Nike were proactive to finding a solution to the issues I was having with their product and I am back to using it again.This is a much different experience than I have had with some other companies recently and it was refreshing to see a company be proactive in finding a solution for a customer.

Yes I ran all 7 days and will probably run until Friday and take that day, for my rest day. It just feels great to just run and not worry about whether the shoe is going to hurt my ankle or have to break my body into the shoe.

This week in two words:¬†New Shoes or better yet: Nike Free’s

Blog Posts

Below are my posts from last week:

  1. Adding New Running Shoes to the Mix
  2. First Run in Nike 4.0 Free Rides
  3. Long Run and Nike Free 4.0 Day 2
  4. Short and Easy Run Today 5-23-12
  5. Brand Loyalty ‚Äď Surprise it is¬†Nike
  6. Almost Got 10.0 Today 5-24-12
  7. Hilly 5.0 and Feeling GREAT 5-25-12
  8. Hot and Humid 10 Miles

I did a lot better with posting this week and participating in my running/fitness sites this week.

Top 10

Here are my top ten posts for the past week based on page views

  1. Tommie Copper Sleeve Review ‚Äď First¬†Impressions
  2. First Run in Asics Gel Blur 33 ‚Äst2/16/12
  3. Long Run and Nike Free 4.0 Day 2
  4. Brand Loyalty ‚Äď Surprise it is¬†Nike
  5. Adding New Running Shoes to the Mix
  6. Wordless Wednesday ‚Äst2/1/12
  7. Newton Gravity‚ÄďAfter 50¬†Miles
  8. Running Log Spreadsheet Template
  9. First Run in Nike 4.0 Free Rides
  10. My Transition Plan to Minimalist Running Shoes

Weight

Holding steady between 152 and 153 all week!

Injuries

No injuries, my hip and knees are feeling a LOT better, even my left soleus flare-up seems to be getting a LOT better.

However, it can’t be because I changed running shoes this week can it? According to the “experts” changing shoes doesn’t/shouldn’t make a big difference in whether you are injured or not {cough “bullshit” cough}.

I tend to think that running in the right shoes for you does make a difference and no I don’t always agree with the “experts” even if they are “smarter” than I am. If you are running in the “right” shoes for you, you will run more efficiently, which in turn leads to fewer injuries.

The hard part is finding those “right” shoes.

Running Shoes

Nike Free 4.0 v2

I bought them on Monday and haven’t had the slightest desire to run in anything else since my first run in them. These just fit right, my ¬†right toe isn’t cramped, the right ankle is not being abused and they just feel right on my feet! More about them in my 50 mile review.

Saucony Kinvara

They have been retired to my walking/lawn mowing shoes.

New Balance MT110

It seems that lately I haven’t been getting to the trails and that these have turned into a comfortable pair of walking shoes. Memo to me – go run on trails!!!!

Newton Gravitas

I haven’t run in them since the surgery last week, so I don’t know if it was successful or not. To be honest with how great the Nike Free 4.0 feel, I don’t really care. The Newton’s will be used for my rainy day runs or days I want to check my form or if I get really froggy and try a few 2 a day workouts.

Maybe all this adaptation I have done over the past 6 months made the transition to the Nike Free 4.0 easy, but there is a definite difference when I run in them, versus the Newton’s and unfortunately or fortunately dependent upon how you look at it, the Newton’s are coming in second place.

Racing Schedule

I started a¬†Google Calendar¬†–¬†Running In Maine 2012¬†with a lot of the dates of races in Maine during 2012. Yesterday I worked on updating and adding a lot of races to the calendar, so it is a lot better than it was before

I have it sort of narrowed down to the races listed below:

Date Name of Race Location Result
1/14/12 Belgrade, ME 40:00/4.0/8:53
4/7/12 Fly Like An Eagle 5k China, ME 23:48/3.1/7:40
4/28/12 Joseph’s 5K Fairfield, ME 23:25/3.1/7:33
5/26/12 Pineland Farms Trail Running 5K New Gloucester, ME ¬†Didn’t run it
6/24/12 Rail Trail 1/2 Marathon Augusta, ME
7/4/12 Friends of the Fourth Winthrop, ME
7/12/12 Bond Brook 5K Race Series Augusta, ME Wednesday Evening
7/15/12 Bradbury Mountain 6 Miler Pownal, ME
7/19/12 Bond Brook 5K Race Series Augusta, ME Wednesday Evening
8/2/12 Bond Brook 5K Race Series Augusta, ME Thursday Evening
8/11/12 Topsham Fair 5K Topsham, ME
9/9/12 Bradbury Mountain 12 Pownal, ME
11/10/12 Maine-ly Moose 5k Portland, ME

It seems that as the year has gone on, I have become more and more a road runner. I haven’t been on a trail in a long time ¬†and need to get back to doing it, otherwise I need to really look at the trail races I have listed and look at road races instead.

This at least gives me an idea of what I would like to run. I have also made a widget for the sidebar of this blog that has the calendar in it. If you see any errors or other information that needs to be updated or added please let me know.

Running Goals

This section shouldn’t change too much from week to week, but I want to keep them right in front of me so that I don’t forget what my goals are

A slight change to my goals – is to make sure that I am enjoying running and not letting it become too much like work.

This year my big goals are to run 1,200 miles, run a sub 20:00 5K and get through 2012 without any significant down time or injuries (running related or others). My unadvertised goals from the start of the year are to be able to finish a half-marathon (notice I said finish not race) and run a few trail races when the weather gets better.

My long-term goal will be to run the 2013 Marine Corps Marathon. I finished the 1983 Marathon and to run/finish Marine Corps again 30 years later would be very cool. This is one of the major goals that I have in mind for my running and it would be even more fantastic if I could qualify for Boston that same day. Therefore, I am doing a 2 year work-up to the Marathon distance, just to see if my knee will hold up.

The reality is that

I have enjoyed just being able to run without worrying about how my running shoes are going to do with my feet and ankles. Stay tuned for my 50 mile review of the Nike Free 4.0 v2 that I am going to try and get out tomorrow. They are not perfect, but they are pretty damn great shoes.

Hot and Humid 10 Miles

I knew that I was in trouble on this run when at mile 7.0 my hat brim was dripping sweat like it was raining out and no it wasn’t raining. I almost didn’t run this one because it was so¬†humid and I am a little tired from the mileage bump. But the sun wasn’t out yet, so the temps when I started were only in the low 70s. I know that I need to acclimate to hot and humid, so I decided to just do it.

However, because of the humidity, I started out slow and stayed slow staying around 9:30 pace.

As you can see as the run went on I kept getting slower, the humidity really sucked it out of me at the end. I am happy with the run though, no stopping and I kept my pace under 10:00 minutes over all – not a great run, but a darn good one for the conditions.

That and I am in uncharted territory with my mileage now. This is the most I have run in a week, since 1988 probably and definitely 1986. So I am taking it careful, but everything feels like it should, the knees are barking a little, but not bad and everything else feels really good.

I don’t care what anybody says – your running shoes do make a difference. I can’t remember a pair of shoes that I ran this many miles in the first 6 days that I had them (even when I was training for the MCM in 1983, I only had around 40 miles my first 6 runs in them according to my logs, so this is a new record for just running a pair of new shoes.

I think that will go for 5.0 tomorrow and get a nice 50 mile week, the first one in a long, long time.