GoRun Ride 7 and Double-Digit Run – RunLog 2-28-18

A very different 10 miler than I was expecting.

No, nothing went wrong, in fact it was one of the best 10 mile runs that I have had in a long time. It was not easy, no 10 mile run is easy for me, but the big thing was that my feet did not hurt on the run because of my running shoes.

That made all of the difference.

This was my third run in the Skechers GoRun Ride 7’s and if this any indication of how they are going to perform, I am going to be a VERY happy runner! I zero problems related to my shoes and they did everything that I could ask of them. Continue reading “GoRun Ride 7 and Double-Digit Run – RunLog 2-28-18”

Busy Day-But I Got 3.0 In – RunLog 2-27-18

Today was one of those “hurry-up and wait” kinda days. It was a medical appointment day for Dad in Bangor, so I got to spend most of the day with him. πŸ™‚

A really good thing.

He is doing okay, so that part is good, just trying to get some things straightened out and improve quality of life kind of stuff. Dad was happy with the results of the appointment and thought the doctor was one of the best he has seen lately. One that actually took the time to listen, didn’t treat him like an ATM and explained what was going on in terms he understood. All good things.

By the time I got home I was wiped, but when I walked through the door, Mary was working out, so it gave me permission to go for a run. I didn’t realize how much I needed it. Driving around Bangor, while it is really isn’t a big deal, it is not someplace I go all that often and when you are attempting to get places on time and thinking about what is going on with your Father, driving for almost 4 hours, well it took a lot out of me.

Running re-charges and relaxes me. I know getting out and busting my arse on the road, then saying that it re-charges/relaxes me is a bit of an oxymoron, but I never said I was normal.

I also wanted to get another run outside in the GoRun Ride 7’s before I went on my long run tomorrow.

However, with all the sitting I had done throughout the day, I was very stiff and didn’t really loosen up until about 2.0 miles into the run. Unfortunately, gastric issues made it so that I had to cut the run a little shorter than I wanted and I picked up the pace to get 3.0 in before I had to make a beeline to the house as soon as I finished.

It was a good run and I feel confident about tomorrow’s long run, it is just a question of which course I want to use to get where I need to go. I guess it will depend on the weather and how I am feeling whether I hit double digits or not.

5.0 Treadmilling and Thinking About Aging – RunLog 2-26-18

The morning started out with the roads rather nasty, but by the time we finished walking Bennie for his long walk, they were mostly just wet. Yes, I could have run outside at home, but I had run down and back up Philbrick Hill yesterday and didn’t feel like doing laps up on top.

So I headed into Augusta to figure out something.

When I opened my gym bag in the PF locker room. Damn it, I had forgotten to put my GRR7’s in the bag like I planned and only had the Gravity 3’s in it. I am still using/saving the G3’s for treadmill and race day shoes, so doing a run outside.

Which made up my mind for me – to the treadmill I went. It was probably just as well, because if I had run outside in the Gravity 3’s, I probably would have run faster than I wanted to. Mondays are normally an easy day for me and at least on the treadmill, I can control the pace a lot better than I tend to outside.

I got on the treadmill and looked on either side of me and saw a couple of old geezers. Now to be honest they were probably younger than I am, but I do not see myself as old and when I thought about that I chuckled to myself. Stop and think Harold what do those 20 and 30 somethings think when they see you getting on the treadmill beside them.

Yeah – who is that old geezer?

Not taken today, but same treadmill.

I laughed out loud and one of the guys beside me just looked over at me like I had lost my head and then went back to watching the TV in front of him.

I chuckled and set the treadmill to 6.8 mph and ran that speed for 2.0 miles. Then I raised it up to 6.9 for a mile and then the guy on my left got done and a older lady (about my age) got on that treadmill. When I looked over at her (everyone looks when somebody new gets on the treadmill beside you), I smiled, didn’t make eye contact on purpose, chuckled to myself and went back to running.

To be honest I just wasn’t into running on the treadmill this morning, I wanted to make sure that I got home to eat lunch with Mary today, since tomorrow I have to take Dad to an appointment up in Bangor that will take most of the day. So I really was more focused on what time it was than getting into the run.

It was a mind thing and I had to play a couple of games with myself to get to 4.0 miles.

At 4.0 miles, I picked it up to 7.0 mph and kept telling myself that I didn’t have much longer to go. Then I kicked the last quarter mile, just to blow the cobwebs out of the brain and remind the old body, it could still things a long pretty good.

Sometimes I forget that I am 60 years old and that I don’t look a lot different than some of the other old guys wandering around the gym, when I look in the mirror. There are real biases against aging and it does affect how we view and think about those who are around us who look old – you know have that gray hair, wrinkles and all the stereotypical old people looks. Whether it is in the gym, store or wherever. Hell I find myself doing it too and that does bother me more than I want to admit.

I am old and if I think that way, I hate to think of how others look at me and others who are at least my age.

It is scary how we look at aging as something to be ridiculed or wished upon someone else, versus the idea of accepting that it is a part of our lives and the fact that we are lucky enough to become old. I know that it is something that I need to think more on and not just because I am getting to be one of the old ones too.

Another one of those *isms that we all have and hate to admit to.

Good run and getting to do some more thinking.

Another Week in the Books – Week In Review 2-25-18

Wow it has been a pretty good week, when I stop and reflect on things.

The weather has not been so horrible that I couldn’t have run outside if I had really wanted, I got in a long run to Augusta, figured out that the Hoka Bondi 5’s were not the answer, got in a new pair of daily trainers, walked down back with Bennie a couple of times, ran pretty good and best of all felt pretty decent the entire week.

My favorite photo from the week was:

It is from the top of the hill looking out over the Kennebec River Valley one morning last week.

The weather has been “wait a minute and it will change kind of week”. Record highs, snow, rain and cold, guess it is just winter in Maine, along with a bit of sun at times.

I got a decent long run outside and got into the mid-30’s for the week running and the same on the elliptical for a nice 70 miles combined. I wouldn’t want to do much more than that for a while, using the elliptical for extra time on my legs is helping me run better.

After my long run on Wednesday, I decided that I needed to really get some running shoes that I could comfortably do my long runs in. Hopefully, the Skechers Go Run Ride 7’s feel as good 400 miles down the road as they do after two runs that I have done in them. You can read my initial thoughts on them here.

I really did attempt to bring the Hoka Bondi 5’s back into the rotation an ran in them 5 days in a row. After doing the long run on Wednesday in them, I thought they were part of the answer, but my right foot bothered me after I stopped and as the day went on my body ached more than it should after that kind of a run. I know I am getting old and decrepit, but there is a difference and I can usually tell when the shoes are part of the problem and not part of the answer.

Oh well, I still have to do my “50 mile” review of them and while it is 95% written I am waiting a little longer before I go ahead and do it.

They are good running shoes, but the reason I stopped running in the other 5 Hoka’s was because they bothered my Tailor’s Bunionette and unfortunately, the Bondi 5’s at the end of the day were doing pretty much the same thing. Too bad, but that is just the way it is. I am going to put them in the back of the garage and try them again in May/June.

I do like them, but they just don’t seem to work for my feet.

Overall, a good week of running and getting my running shoe rotation ready for better weather outside. You know that time of year when it is getting nice enough for an old fart to get some long runs in. I can’t wait.

Skechers GoRun Ride 7 – Initial Impressions and Great Expectations

I will be honest, I have not been totally thrilled with most of the shoes in my rotation, with the exception of the Newton Gravity 3’s, which are doing more than I ever thought they would. My current shoes are enough for 3-5 miles, but as the weather up heah in Maine get a bit more reasonable for running outside, I have been starting to pick up my mileage a little.

So I have half-heartedly looking for a pair of long run shoes that are comfortable and don’t leave me feeling beat up after running long in them. This sort of looking for new long run shoes became more of a priority after this week’s run – when the shoes I ran my long run in, left me feeling beat up and were beginning to bother my tailor’s Bunionette.

About 3-4 weeks ago I read Sam’s blog Road, Trail, Run and his review of the Skechers GoRun Ride 7 and some other blog reviews, which intrigued me to say the least. I have run in the GRR2 (4-pair), GRR3, GRR5 and several other Skechers Performance models. I loved the GRR2’s and as much as I liked some of the other models/lines – they well…didn’t fit right. Which I attribute to the pleather strap that Skechers uses to provide some structure to the upper and how it lays across my tailor’s Bunionette.

However, when I read the review, a lot of what the reviewers discussed were how I felt about my old GRR2’s. The more I thought about it and fought to run longer runs in my other shoes, the more it sounded like it was time to try the GoRun Ride 7’s.

The $90 price point wasn’t as painful as other highly rated 2018 shoes and the shoes themselves are supposed to be more sophisticated than the other Skechers Performance shoes I had run in previously, so I ordered a pair from Amazon. Continue reading “Skechers GoRun Ride 7 – Initial Impressions and Great Expectations”

Another 5.0 on The Treadmill – RunLog 2-24-18

Waking up this morning to a bit of nastiness left over from last night’s – I wouldn’t call it a storm, but it left the roads not something wanted to walk on all that much, much less run on them.

So I walked Bennie down to the brook down-back, really pretty down there

And procrastinated getting going on my run. The roads were just a bit wet by then, but chilly wind had kicked up and I was hoping that it might calm down a little if I waited.

Also I knew that something was coming via USPS and they deliver a little earlier on Saturday’s. That new pair of running shoes that I couldn’t resist.

Finally, the mailman drove up and there was one of those shoe box sized boxes with my name on it.

My Skechers Go Run Ride 7’s had arrived.

I will go into the why, wherefores in an initial impressions post a little later.

Which meant that I could do today’s run in them. Aren’t you glad you waited, errr procrastinated a little.

Yes, I am.

The roads were still a little wet and just in case, I figured I might as well run on the treadmill in them for the first run. So off I went to Planet Fitness.

After doing my pre-run work, I got on the treadmill, set it to 7.2 mph and ran. No issues, no problems, well except for a small one at 1.25 miles when I had to run to the locker room. When I got back I reset things to 7.2 mph and ran another 2.0 miles.

When incredibly the old body decided that it was time to visit the locker – again. Well let’s just say both visits were VERY productive ;-). However, it wasn’t what I wanted to do during my first run in a pair of running shoes.

One thing that I have to remember in them is on the treadmill to vary my stride and how I land in them. I noticed that if I just ran, that the outside of my right foot would begin to bother a little from the repetitive landings on the outside of my foot in the GRR7’s, otherwise no issues and this is an I tend to have in many shoes on the treadmill.

Once I got back on I did another 1.50 at 7.2 mph and then picked it up a little to 7.6 mph for the last quarter. I did scurry back to the locker room for one more visit. It seems that the old body is cleaning out the pipe back there and that running hurried things along.

Not too shabby 5.0 miles in 41:10 for the first run (with too damn many interruptions). The Go Run Ride 7’s felt good and I felt a couple of pounds lighter. Hehehe

A Little Quicker – RunLog 2-23-18

A pretty normal morning, Bennie’s first walk, then a walk with Mary and Bennie, then taking off for the gym to do something. No I didn’t have a plan on what I was going to do for a run today, Fridays have become my free day, where I get to do what the body wants to do.

Today it also meant eating some of those wonderful highly sugared, nasty, horrible, yummy snacks that I can’t open the package and eat just one. YELLOW PEEPS!!!!!

Getting back to running, some weeks, it means a couch potato day, others it might mean a good run outside up to 5.0 miles. Well this week I really didn’t have a clue when I left the house or even when I walked through the Planet Fitness doors what was going to happen. Yeah, on the way in I thought about a few possibilities, but nothing seemed to be the “right” thing.

I decided that I wasn’t going to run outside even though it was very runnable (high 20’s, a little breeze, clear roads), so I went through my warm-up routine for the treadmill and stood on the last treadmill available (school vacation week means more people) – the same one I ran on yesterday.

While I was finishing up my final stretches while standing on the sides of the treadmill, inspiration hit me. I decided to only do 3.0 miles and then foam roll and stretch things out after. Okay that sounded pretty good, unless I do not run this weekend, I am pretty sure of getting in my 30 mile week.

As I was getting the treadmill upta speed, I had another wonderful idea, why not go a little faster today. The body seemed to want to go faster than I have for a while.

Okay, I set the treadmill to 7.6 mph and did that first mile without any issues other than the little toe on my right foot was not splaying out like it should and was still pressing in too much against the other toe (too many runs in the wrong shoe this week) – if I had to guess.

At 1.0 miles I pushed the speed up to 7.7 mph and then again at 1.5 to 7.8 mph. After that I started increasing the speed every so often and had a really good last quarter mile kick.

It ended up being my best Treadmill 5K time of 2018 by a whole second.

No, I was not attempting to go for that, it just happened. The best part of this run was that I never felt like I was working harder than I should for the speeds I was running until that last quarter mile, even then I was still feeling strong, but also know that I am not in any kind of shape to do those speeds for much further than I did.

However, I felt as if I could have kept going if I had slowed down to the pre-last quarter speed for a while longer. Which to be honest surprised me, usually at those speeds my tongue is dragging on the belt and the old heart is pounding or is that hammering away pretty good.

After getting done, with the run, I cooled down a bit and then did 15% incline for 5:00 minutes @ 4.0 mph. I do like to do that at the end of a workout, I am not quite cooled down and it forces me to pick up my feet for a bit.

Then I hit the mats in the stretching area, silently screaming a few times when that damned foam roller hit or is that bit into some spots on my legs. Damn that thing does find some nasty spots on those old legs of mine. Did a few stretches and called it good.

I felt very pleased with the run and the pre/post workouts that I did, now to have a few Peeps, then later for supper a great homemade Pizza and Beer.

Gonna be a good night.

Make Sure Everything is Measured

The old sayings “if you measure it, you can improve it”, “if it is important, it can be quantified” or this quote:

“Perhaps what you measure is what you get. More likely, what you measure is all you’ll get. What you don’t (or can’t) measure is lost” – H. Thomas Johnson …

Yes, they are true, so very true.

As a runner, I ask:

  • How many miles did you run today?
  • How many minutes did it take you?
  • What was your pace?
  • What was your heart rate?
  • What was your suffer score?
  • How many miles are on your running shoes?
  • How many steps did you take today?
  • How many hours did you sleep, how many were quality sleep hours?
  • How much did you weigh today
  • Did give an alpha or numeric grade to your run?

All these metrics and so many others — dependent upon the sport, your level and interests.

Like most runners, I can be a bit obsessive about my running stats, because the numbers don’t lie, they give a verifiable snapshot of how I did during that particular workout, moment or period of time that I am attempting to measure.

They show when I going good, when I am doing okay and when things are going pretty bad. The good, the bad and the ugly as I like to call my running progress most of the time. The numbers and measurements that I get from those numbers tell me where I stand in comparison to other runners and the runner I used to be, and possibly give me an idea of the runner that I could be going forward.

However, are the numbers a true representation of you or I and the runners we are?

Has running…hell has life in general only become a series of measurements that are plugged into a computer program, graphed, averaged and where the one who has the best numbers – is the best?

What happened to all the things you can’t measure:

  • Being challenged and the satisfaction derived from picking your arse up out of the dirt and working hard to overcome the challenge in front of you.
  • Giving a piece of yourself, if you must call it this, sacrificing something of yourself for the benefit of others. That idea of giving back.
  • Being honest with the numbers that have accumulated. Not cherry-picking or cooking them to meet a particular expected or preferred outcome or to show how great you really are.
  • Being honest and not cheating to finish ahead your current abilities. Just because a friend qualified for X does not mean you have to also.
  • Being comfortable with who you are and the journey you are on. We all have different paths and perspectives on what happiness for us is and might be.
  • Being able to think beyond the numbers and think about what IS important.

And all the other things in life that are not quantified and reduced down to zeroes and ones then programmed into a graph or other display to show to the world what the numbers say you are.

What does matter and does it matter if you can measure it or…not?

I wonder if the numbers tell the whole story of our running or our lives.

Do we measure too many things in our efforts to control too many things.

Sometimes I think too much, me thinks.

The Smallest Things – RunLog 2-22-18

Sometimes the smallest of things can throw you off and change your plans

Today it was simply a missing red combination lock.


Yeah, I went to the gym to do an easy 4.0 miles on the treadmill and then do my Thursday weight session.

However, when I got to the gym, my combination lock was not attached to my gym bag? I had it for Tuesday’s outside session and was reasonably sure that I had put it back on the bag when I left that day, especially since I remember that I put it on a different spot than I usually do and no it could not have simply slid off.

Somehow I must not have cleared the combination and it detached somewhere along the way.

I still don’t have a clue about where it is though. I searched the lost and found boxes there, emptied out my gym bag and even went to the front desk and searched through their lost and found box. I did find my missing NB running hat (so not everything was for naught). I have even searched the truck and around the house – no lock to be found. Continue reading “The Smallest Things – RunLog 2-22-18”

Long Run Outside – RunLog 2-21-18

Doing 8.0 plus miles outside is completely different than doing long run on the treadmill. I did my first outside long run of the year today and it was definitely harder. Although the weather did cooperate with the temps being in the low 40’s with a 5-10 mph breeze out of the south – of course the direction that I was running towards.

Today was supposed to be a record setting temp day, well I think the snow pack and light breeze kept the temps down and fog around a lot longer than the weather forecasters thought it would around here. Although it did get into the mid 40’s round the house and getting into the 40’s in February is a real treat, it was not shorts and t-shirt weather when I ran.

Still it wasn’t all that cold either.

Today’s run was not about speed, it was completely about running more than 8.0 miles outside.

I was looking to stay right around a 9:00 minute pace and did really good with it:

The course is a mostly down-hill course, with a couple of bumps to keep me honest.

I started out comfortably, although I did spend a bit of time on the road shoulder avoiding traffic a little more than usual – that school vacation traffic. A couple of times I had to come to a complete stop when traffic was coming in both directions where a big puddle and snowbank blocked the road shoulder – no biggie, but just a pain, but stopping was better than loosing a battle with a couple of pick-up trucks. πŸ™‚

Once I got out on Outer Civic Center Drive, I was able to run comfortably and a lot more safely with the breakdown lane on the sides. However, I was starting to get tired by the time I got to the Commerce Dr. lights and was feeling like it was getting close to time to finish. Even though I usually pick up the pace going down Leighton Road, today I just kept plugging along and didn’t attempt to go any faster.

Although I got to my usual stopping spot 8.2 miles 1:11:52, I decided not to stop, since Mary hadn’t caught up to me yet. I turned around and planned to walk back up the hill from the Water Works to the Cemetery and then start running again.

Luckily for me, by the time I got to the road before the cemetery I could see Clifford (our Transit’s name) coming down the road – it is very red and easy to see. So I was a little faster than the 9:00 minute pace, but it gives me something to improve on next time.

That can happen later in the year, right now I just want to get the old body used to running longer outside for a while. πŸ™‚

Oh yeah, what running shoes did I wear?

The Hoka Bondi 5’s. I wanted to learn if I was going to have any issues with them or not. The answer was that I didn’t think a whole lot about my footwear today.

It was a good thing to learn.

Overall, I was very happy with the run and especially how the Bondi 5’s performed this morning. Although I am a bit sore tonight, like I said at the start running long outside is a LOT different than doing it on the treadmill.

Today was a indicator of things to come, weather-wise and hopefully my running.

However, it is still February and there is possibly some snow in the forecast for tomorrow. Wait a minute and the weather will change.