I had to take the Nissan in to ACAR in Augusta to have some work done that was going to take about 2 hours. So I had a choice sit there with my thumb up my you know what until the car was done or do something constructive – at least in my mind.
Like go for a run.
I wanted to do a longer run and figured running to Gardiner from ACAR on the Rail Trail would be a good way to find out the condition of my condition. However, there was a problem with that idea that I will get to later.
Going through Hallowell was pretty easy and I didn’t have to contend with too much traffic – which was unusual for a nice day in July, but from a running standpoint I won’t complain. I probably was around a 8:30 pace for the 3-4 miles before I started to fade at bit.
I did have to chuckle – at the 3.0 mile I saw this young fella – no shirt on and he had abs, going by the other way (I had just passed a quarter-mile marker), when I suddenly heard some serious panting and footsteps coming up on me. He passed me, but for as much as he was working he really wasn’t pulling away like I expected him – I might have instinctively sped up a bit, but I didn’t try to hold him off. Then I purposely, throttled back – I didn’t want to get caught up doing speed work 3.0 miles into a long run.
He must have been doing mile repeats, he did keep pulling slowly away and I saw him stop at what would have been about a mile and put his hand on his legs. He was working pretty hard, not sure what his pace was, but it was faster than me right now.
I had forgotten how far Gardiner is from ACAR, I had planned on doing about 70:00 minutes or around 8.0 miles, since the longest run that I have done this year is around 7.0 miles and I don’t want to over-extend myself too much. When I got to where I remembered the 4.0 mile point was, I was only at the Hit Hat (Top) restaurant, but wanted to go all the way to Gardiner.
So I kept going, unfortunately when I got to the Gardiner end of the RT, I “HAD” to go to Hannaford and ease the pressure that had been building for about two miles. That is the biggest issue I have with the RT is the lack of blue boxes to ease certain pressures that have to be taken care of.
After loosing some weight and getting water, it was just hot enough and long enough that it was nice to have. I got back on the Rail Trail – it sucked starting back up after that pit stop. The worst part was that my Achilles both started to tighten up and I slowed down a lot as a result of that the rest of the way back.
At the 1:10:00 point I walked for the first time. The Achilles both were tightening up too much and I need to walk a ways. The rest of the run became a series of running a ways then walking a short distance, then running again.
The frustrating part was that nothing else was bothering me, my feet in the Wave Rider 20 EE’s felt great, hips were fine, hammies were not barking, knees no complaints, head was in the right place and focused on running well. Everything was doing what it was supposed to except the Achilles.
They just were not ready for the distance – yet.
I won’t lie and say I wasn’t getting frustrated every time that I had to walk or couldn’t get to the speed that I knew I was able to do if not for the Achilles tightness. However, I know enough to not push the issue too much on my first long run of the year.
My Mizuno Wave Rider 20 EE’s did great the entire run, although I could feel them not be as grippy on the brick sidewalks in Hallowell. I would hate to think how they would be on those bricks if they were wet. However, to be fair not too many shoes do well that I have worn have done well on those bricks.
So far the WR20’s have been the best running shoes I have run in since my old Blue Nike 4.0’s back in 2013.
Oh yeah, the car got fixed, I got my first post-retirement haircut and got a nice lunch. Then I took a well deserved nap – yes I am getting back to taking my afternoon nap routine and you know something they do make a difference for the better.
Although I am starting to wonder if my Achilles issues will limit the distance that I will be able to run going forward. Stay tuned to see what the journey holds.
It wasn’t a great run by any stretch of the imagination, but I made double-digits, didn’t injure anything (I walked a mile later in the afternoon without any Achilles issues) and have a better idea of where I am physically. That is the beauty of long runs – they do let you know what kind of shape you are really in.
But I got it done.