4.0 More on Treadmill – Answered One Question

Well there, I got an answer about that question, without any doubts.

Last year I got a pair of Reebok RunFasts and while I loved the shoes and ran fairly well in them, there were a couple of things that bothered me about them. So in the Fall, I decided to put them away until this Spring, since they are a great shoe to run fast in for me and I wanted to save them for racing this year.

Spring has sprung, well at least on the calendar, so I dug the RunFasts out from under the dresser, so I could get a good feel for how they would do now. Saturday’s run was not great and I made a couple of changes to improve the fit (elastic laces and different insole).

Today was a scheduled easy 6.0 miles and I figured it would be a good comfort check.

I started out at 6.4 mph and kept it there for most of the run.

Unfortunately, I didn’t make it to 6.0 miles and struggled to get to 4.0!

At about 2.5 miles the bottom of both feet started to bother and by 3.5 miles the outside of my right foot (where the tailor’s bunionette is) was becoming very painful. I got 4.0 miles and shut it down.

I should definitely have stopped at 3.5, because my right foot now is bothering the hell out of me and I might take tomorrow off, just to make sure that the foot is fine.

Sometimes you just gotta know when to fold them and today it was definitely time when I finally stopped.

I have a lot of problems with running shoes that have inner booties or something that holds the tongue in place with stretchable material to the bottom of the shoe, due to that damn Tailor’s Bunionette. Today was very similar to how this foot felt in other shoes that I have gotten rid of in the last year.

Which means that I have my answer on whether I will be using the RunFasts for my race day shoes or not.

Not seems to be a pretty definitive answer.

Too bad, because I really like the shoes and how they feel otherwise, but over the last 3-4 months I have been running pain-free and comfortably in my running shoes and I am not going to go back to having my feet hurt to run in a pair of shoes.

Who knows maybe my feet changed just enough since last year to make it so that the RunFasts no longer really work for me now.

Anyone need a pair of size 8.5 RunFasts, maybe we can work a trade or something if you want them.

Back to Running – 5.0 In the Books – RunLog 3-20-19

Well there, I took the last couple of days off, just to give the olde body a break, but you know something, I really think that the brain needed the break as much or even more than the body did.

Either way taking off that couple of days allowed me to reset the things, get my mojo back in line with the way I want to feel about my running and by the time I got to my run this morning, I was ready to run.

Actually, I wanted to run.

Which is how I want to feel.

However, running down-back isn’t really an option yet, the melt, re-freeze, melt cycle is making a mess and even at 9-10 in the morning the ice is not my friend.

Also it was the first day of Spring and the weather was about as good as it gets this time of year. Mid to upper 30s, bright sunshine and of course a pretty steady breeze out of the Southwest.

So of course I was going to run outside. I am hoping that this week becomes my transition week, to running most of my runs outside going forward. I would like to only do my strength or speed sessions on Tuesday’s on the treadmill for a while longer. Only because I seem to be more consistent with my training and don’t attempt to be too stoopid about running way faster than I need or should be running those workouts.

Well how was the run?

It was a nice and easy on one, where I focused more on how I was feeling than attempting to maintain a certain pace or effort. Yeah, the last mile I picked it up a little when I turned around at the Commerce Center lights and came back against the breeze down Civic Center Drive.

However, for the most part this was all about just enjoying the run and you know something I did.

This is what I needed for this week.

Tomorrow I have to head down to Portland, so I will most likely run around Back Cove a couple of times and smile a lot. I might even get over to Fleet Feet Sports and Trader Joe’s after the run.

In other news, I have a feeling that I am going to retire the adidas Tempo 9s pretty soon, the left heel cup is getting pretty saggy and while I could push them for another 100 miles or so if I really had to. I don’t have to, I have two more pair of Tempo 9s sitting in the closet, so I will be getting one pair out and retiring my current T9s to either daily walkers.

A pretty good run, where I got a few things straightened out in my head and a couple of choices thought out and figured out that the status quo is not the direction that I want to go.

Also I got the Passion Paradox by Steve Magness on Kindle this morning and have gotten a couple of chapters in, it actually looks like a good read. He is one of the “they” that I do follow on Twitter, read his blogs and listen to some of the podcasts, so Magness is one of those authors that I do listen to about running more than most.

Callusing the Brain – Runlog 3/17/19

Let’s get real, I was wimpy today.

The temps were in the mid 20s and the breeze was more than I wanted to deal with at this point and time. So instead of doing my scheduled long run outside, I decided that running on the treadmill was going to be the plan of the day.

Unfortunately, when I left the house, both my wife and I commented about how we felt a little off, so I wasn’t heading into my long run with the idea that I was going to finish. It was more like, I will do whatever I can and be happy with the results.

No warm-up, I just wanted to get things over with this morning, so this is the workout that I ended up doing.

6.6 miles @ 6.7 mph. Nothing special through 3.0 miles, at that point the GI issues started to haunt me, but I was able to hold things off until after the 6.6 mile point. I figured that it was about half-way and the treadmill would be shutting off in a couple of minutes, so it was a good point to…

Go for a bathroom break

The last 6.5 miles I felt a little more relaxed and did feel better during the run. At 8.0 and 10.0 miles I seriously considered bagging the runs, but I figured that I was getting closer to finishing the 13.1 and figured that I might as well keep going.

3.5 miles @ 6.7 mph

1.0 mile @ 6.8 mph

1.0 mile @ 6.9 mph

1.0 mile @ 7.8 mph

Yeah, once I got going again and got to the 10.0 mile point, I decided to start picking up the pace a little just to see if the old body had anything left. When I got to the 12th mile, I wanted to see how I felt at my hoped for half marathon race pace would feel like when I am tired.

Not nearly as bad as I thought I would feel.

From running the distance in the past and how well my training has been going this cycle, I was pretty confident that I could run the half marathon distance physically and it was just a matter of getting the brain to agree to do it again.

Now that I have run the distance on the treadmill, which to me is a LOT harder to run for this long, it now becomes more a question of how fast I can run it. Which is where I want to be both physically and mentally going into the last third of the training plan.


This is the first time that I have run this far on the treadmill in a long, long time and I was super impressed with how well the Beacons did. No issues with the shoes at all. The biggest problem that I had was the bump in the sock on my right foot irritating my Tailor’s Bunionette a little. Nothing serious, but enough to know it wasn’t quite right, so I won’t be using those socks again for a long run.

Even though I didn’t go into the run all that confident about how it would be, the run went a LOT better than I expected. Always a good thing. Sometimes even when you don’t really feel all that confident or are feeling a bit off, once you get going things even out and you are able to complete the workout as scheduled and actually do a lot better than what you had planned in the first place.


Taking My Training to a Different Level – RunLog 3-14-19

Over the years, I can honestly say that I have never had a training cycle quite like this one!

Yeah, I used an exclamation point for a reason.

Over the years I have been one of those haphazard training kind of runners, who depended more on natural ability than actually training. I did have a little ability, but don’t brag about it very often very often, since I have never been able to live up to the potential that some saw in me as a runner.

My issues were I seldom made a real effort to stick with a training plan when they got harder. Sometimes because the plans were  too aggressive for where I actually was physically or mentally, I got bored with it, found something else that sparkled in my eye for the moment and led me down a different type of training rabbit hole or more likely I injured something – at least that would be my excuse.

However, if I am honest with myself and with that 20/20 hindsight – I was a chicken.

I was not willing to do the hard work that is necessary to run well and found or made up excuses to not run well.

Since January, I have been using the Hansons Half Marathon Training Plan and something has clicked within this old fart’s mind and body. While I haven’t been perfect about following the plan, I have followed it better than I have any other training in my entire running career, even though it is probably the hardest I have ever worked as a runner.

Guess what?

I am running better than I have in years – like since the mid 80s.

Even though during my glory days I might have run faster, but I know without a doubt that I didn’t work this hard.

No, I will never be a great or even good runner, I do not have that kind of drive, but I am showing myself that I can do more than I thought I would be able to at over 60 years old. Sometimes it just takes some of us longer to learn what we need to do versus finding excuses on why we can’t run better. Continue reading “Taking My Training to a Different Level – RunLog 3-14-19”

Tough Workout & New Furniture – RunLog 3-11-19

Another day in the life and another new adventure or is that something unexpected happening that turns out pretty well.

Well overnight, all of yesterday’s melt water was frozen solid and immediately after walking Bennie, I got to sand the driveways, so that none of us would slip, fall and injure important parts of the anatomy on the ice. I just so love lifting 5 gallon buckets filled with sand and spreading it first thing in the morning – not.

Bennie’s walk was not down-back, I figured that if my driveway looked like a skating rink then down there would be even worse and even though I was a bit reluctant to walk down Philbrick Hill before my planned Something of Substance (SOS) workout this morning, it was the much safer alternative to say the least. That 20+ mph wind out of the NW this morning was still pretty damn cold.

Enough wasting time, what was the tough workout I was complaining about?

Today Planned Workout

This morning’s SOS workout courtesy of the Hansons Half Marathon training plan was:

1.5 mile x 4 @ 7:30 pace – about 8.0 mph, with .5 recovery at a pace I could start to breath normally again, which I figured out was 6.2 mph.

Actually this is a workout that I should be able to complete without any issues, I have been running 4-5 consecutive miles for my tempo workouts at about a 7:40 pace, which is only 10 seconds above my planned pace this morning. Yet just the idea of having to run a mile and half, four times at a 7:30 pace seemed more intimidating than it should have.

Oh well, Harold, sometime your head does get in the way of your running, when instead you gotta suck it up, get the old arse in gear and do the damned workout.

Ego Stroking

I did have to chuckle though, in the locker room one of the Planet Fitness regulars came up to me and asked. “You are a pretty good runner aren’t you?”

MMMMMM – how do you answer that question…compared to who, I had never had a conversation with this person and had no idea where the conversation was going, so I said.

“Well I run, but I don’t know how good I am.”

He then said, “I need to pick your brain about running faster. I have a younger guy who I have to beat in a 5K or two this summer and I was wondering if I could get some pointers on running faster from you?” “I have watched you on the treadmill and you seem pretty fast to me.”

Yeah he was feeding the ego, just a little.

It boiled down to that he wants to beat this person at a race that I have done a couple of times before and that he had seen me there for one of them. Since this is a race that he usually races every year. The younger guy is in his 40s and this guy is mid 50s. He asked how old I was, we both chuckled when I told him. I have a feeling he was thinking, now I have got beat an older fart too, I could see the wheels spinning in his head.

After that we went over his experiences and previous times, how old he was compared to the younger runner, about his current mileage and how soon he needed to race. I told him that I wasn’t really a coach and that I had some books at the house he could borrow to read, to find a training plan that best mirrors his personality and as the weather gets better outside, maybe we could do some quality workouts together.

He seemed excited about that and I will bring in a couple of my training books that I don’t use any more and probably talk some more about running with him.

Finally getting to the Workout

While it was nice to talk with him about running and stuff, I needed to get my SOS workout done and we both headed out to the floor and I did my warm-up, I wimped out and only did 20 push-ups and headed for the treadmill.

I actually prefer to use a treadmill for this kind of workout, I can’t wimp out and I HAVE to keep my pace up, until I manually slow the treadmill down. So what did I actually end up doing for a workout.

1.0 mile @ 6.5 mph – warmup

2 x 1.5 miles @ 8.0 mph with .25 recoveries @ 6.2 mph. I reduced the length of the recoveries from .5 to .25, because I did have someplace I had to be a bit later in the afternoon, so subtracting a mile total of recovery time seemed like the best place to make the workout fit the time that I had. The two repeats felt pretty good, they were not easy, but I didn’t have any issues other than the GI issues that seem to plague me part way into most runs on the treadmill.

At the end of the second recovery .25, it was time for a brief pit stop in the locker room, before heading back out and finishing up the workout.

2 x 1.5 miles @ 8.0 mph with .25 and .20 recoveries @ 6.2 mph. I am not going to lie and say that these two repeats were in any way easy. They were not. However, as much as I wanted to put my right hand on the treadmill and hang on for that last half mile, I didn’t. I just kept running. It is some of that mental toughness training that I needed as much as pushing the body to do more than I have done in the past.

You notice that I only cooled down for .20 before moving to the next part of the workout.

Yeah, I had enough energy left to do 5 x .1 strides at a pretty fast for me pace, with .1 recoveries.

Annotation 2019-03-12 215239

I liked doing them a whole lot better than those long arse 1.5 mile repeats. Yeah, I do prefer the short, faster stuff, but I also know that I need to improve my stamina and strength to accomplish some of the nascent goals that I have been thinking about chasing this summer.

So I gotta do what needs to be done. Which is to run longer distances than I prefer.

New Furniture

The reason I was time-limited this morning was the wife needed a new evening sitting chair, so we were going to go get her one she had seen while out shopping this weekend. However, we decided to stop at one more place along the way and look at what they had.

While we were there we discussed what we really wanted/needed versus what we already had and decided to look at recliners for both of us, along with a center piece that will double as a charging station for some of our electronics.

I wasn’t really expecting to get a new workplace, but it seemed like the best plan, especially since our loveseat was showing a bit of wear where a certain old fart plants his arse most nights.


Yeah, we both got new recliners for a pretty decent price. Then we had the bright idea of getting rid of the old stereo and speakers, keeping the loveseat and redoing the living room once we got home. The above photo is after a few hours work and actually, I like the results. Bennie I have a feeling is less than thrilled with the change, but he will adapt.

So it has been one of those busy days, where I had my ego fed, a tough, but satisfying workout done and getting a new place to plant myself after supper and for napping after more of those hard workouts was pretty cool. 🙂




Busy, But Got the Run In – RunLog 3-11-19

Another one of those days where the running is necessarily squeezed into the other needs of life that is going on around me. No it is nothing serious, just life making time for running a little more difficult than I want it to be.

Yesterday we had one of those miserable little winter storms that leaves just enough snow on the ground to bring out the snowblower this morning. You know about 4-5 inches of stuff, with a crust from the rain at the end of the snowstorm.

That took about an hour and half to get it done and all the twisting, turning and playing with the beastly snowblower made for sore: hips, knees, shoulders and wrists again. In winter the snowblower and the rest of the year it is the lawn mower that beat me up. I am now pretty sure that I know what causes my right hip to complain more than anything else. This morning I noticed that it is the leg that I pivot on when I make 90% of my turns and after I got done, guess what was complaining – the right hip.

So what do I do with this new knowledge – I am not sure…I cannot stop snowblowing or mowing the lawn this summer and getting a lawn tractor brings other issues that I prefer not to deal with for a few more years. So for now it is enough to know what at least part of the cause for the right hip bothering. Now to figure out the next step.

It was actually pretty nice outside and once I got done with the snowblowing, Bennie and I walked 2.0 miles down-back. Someone had plowed the road and it was in better shape than some of the local tar roads for driving – flat and smooth, no potholes, but also quite a bit of ice right under the surface snow. While driving on it would be pretty good, the idea of running on it did not really appeal to me – staying upright might have been a bit too optional.

Plus the roads had a lot of melt water, puddles and were just wet. Which would have meant soaked feet and not being all that much fun. Which meant heading to Planet Fitness for the treadmill.

The run itself was 5.0 miles at 6.3 mph for the entire time. Nothing really complained once I got going and it was all about just doing it. I got done and talked with Mike P. For a few minutes about what we were doing for training. Otherwise it was just one of those git it done runs. 🙂

Then I had to hustle home, eat a quick lunch and head to the Ford Dealership for service work on the Transit. Nothing serious, but we do attempt to keep up with the scheduled maintenance, especially with a long trip coming up in the next month or so. Better to get things up to snuff now than out on the road and having to go to some strange repair shop and well…you know the horror stories.

I still have a few more stops after I get done here and will probably get home just in time for Bennie’s net walk, before having to go into supper routine. For an old retired guy, I have sure been busy over the last year. I would love for things to slow down a bit more for us, but it doesn’t seem to be in the cards for the foreseeable future.

Maybe someday, until then I get to whine about how busy I am…yeah, I have a feeling that I am not really all that busy compared to many of you out there, but it is a matter of perspective and expectations I have a sneaking suspicion.

Almost Beat the Snow – RunLog 310-19

After yesterday’s long run, I wasn’t sure where I was going to run this morning. It came down to when the snow was going to get here and how screwed up I felt after the frigging time change. This is the one that always messes the most with my head and body.

Yep, we got up late according to the “new” time, same time as it would have been yesterday, so according to Hoyle, I was already running behind and stayed that way the rest of the morning. Bennie and I walked 2.0 miles down-back and I decided that there was no way I would be running down there again for a while. Too much white ice and not enough snow on top of it, to get any traction.

However, the snow was holding off and I really didn’t feel like heading into town for a treadmill workout today. Which meant going down Philbrick Hill and then coming back up it to get home kind of course. One of those damned to do it kind of runs. Plus even though the thermometer may have said 22*F, it was on of those bone chilling 22* where the slight breeze would just go right through you.

I can tell the adidas Tempo 9s are starting to break down a bit on the upper, because the heel cup when I put them on folds down and is a bear to get it in it proper place again. Although once I get it unfolded and where it is supposed to be the shoe is still comfortable. It is just getting it there that is the pain in the arse.

Really, I had zero idea how I would feel and just decided to run easy. Going down Philbrick of course my left shoe came untied, which is par for the course. So I had to stop and re-tie it and seemed to pick up the pace a little more than when I stopped without any additional effort.

Yeah, the roads had some ice melt and re-freeze from yesterday spots that were easy to avoid for most of the run. The new houses being built at the end of Pepin are going to be huge, I know that I wouldn’t want the mortgages they will command.

I was surprised at how well I was feeling all the way back to Philbrick Hill and while I slowed down considerably going up it, when I looked at the Strava segment for it, it was the 3rd fastest time for it. I know that I am running hills better for some reason than I was last year, but to run the 3rd fastest time on that hill in March in full winter gear on a recovery run is a pretty positive thing.

Of course, when I got to the top of the hill the first snow flakes started, which meant that I may have purposely sped up a little to get it over with before the road got snow covered and covered up the ice patches and made things a bit more “interesting”.

By the time I finished, the snow was just starting to accumulate a little and I could see prints from some crazy runnah out there on the road. So it was pretty good timing.

Good run, good timing and the Tempo 9s are still working pretty damn nicely once I am able to get them on and situated.

6.0 Mile Recovery Run Down-back – RunLog 3-8-19

I don’t have a clue what was going on with me yesterday, after feeling like ungh all day, I went to bed early last night and woke up this morning with a spring back in my step that was not there the day before.

It is still colder than hell around heah, it got to -4*F overnight and warmed up to 3*F for Bennie and my morning walkabout. According to the forecast the cold air escalator is shutting down today and we will get back to more March-like or at least average March temps starting this afternoon. That will be nice.

Bennie and Hunter are starting to get along a bit better and we are walking them more and more together. Hopefully at some point they will figure it out and not growl at one another quite as often.

After walking down-back with them, I figured it would be safe enough to do a run down to Tiffany. The dirt road has been plowed by the local truck guys, even though it is closed for the winter and there is a layer of snow on top of the ice that makes walking or in my case running possible through here for now.

Today is a scheduled 6.0 mile recovery run, so I wasn’t worried about trying to run faster through the downback section of the course, it might be decent, but not that great.

Once I got over on Tiffany, I was able to relax and just run. However, on the way back there was about a 10 mph breeze in my face that was a bit chilly coming off the snowbanks, but I lived through it. 😉

The Tempo 9s are beginning to show the mileage, the left heel cup is wearing through the liner and I can see the same thing starting on the right foot as well. It was bound to happen at some point, but they have served me well for 325 miles and while the liner is wearing through, it hasn’t started to bother my feet yet. I would like to get them over 400 before I retire them to the shoes I keep in the truck for those just in case runs that pop up from time-to-time.

Otherwise it was one of those nice recovery runs where I just run comfortably and slowed down from there. The weather will warm-up eventually and it will be nice to get to running outside in shorts and a t-shirt again.

Tempo Thursday and It Rather Sucked – RunLog 3/7/19

I did take yesterday off and got less than 10,000 steps for the day, so I did good on making it an actual rest day.

However, I felt a bit off this morning and haven’t felt all that great since I did the workout, but not really nasty, so I am not sure what is going on.

However, if it is Thursday, it means it must be Tempo time and no I don’t mean wearing my Tempo 9s, it means it is time to test my endurance with my half marathon wanna be race pace. That gotta run faster for a long time that I am getting better at, but still not all that crazy about actually doing.

Today was another 5.0 mile tempo run on the treadmill. Yep, it is still cold as all get out outside and below my self-imposed limit of 20*F, so after walking Bennie a mile, I headed out to Planet Fitness.

Only 30 push-ups today during warm-up – I just didn’t have it. So I was a little concerned about how well the tempo workout was going to go.

1.0 Mile – warm-up

2.0 Mile Tempo

Bathroom break

3.0 Mile Tempo

6 x .1 strides at fast pace with .1 recoveries

Recovery to 8.0 miles

It was probably the hardest tempo workout that I have had since I have started doing them in the Hansons plan. My body really wasn’t into doing it this morning and I had to keep forcing myself to keep going.

Not all runs or workouts are great and there are often runs that you just have to do and get through. These are the ones that are the toughest to finish, but give me the most satisfaction once I do finish. Since I had to battle with the urges to give in and stop and didn’t.

Not a great run by any stretch of the imagination – but I did get it done.

Although Mary told me about a sale going on at Mardens, so I stopped at the one in Waterville on the way home. I did pick up a tech long sleeve shirt, a possible replacement running jacket for colder weather and some more running socks for later this year.

So I did score some pretty good deals.

A Workout That I NEVER Dared to do Before – RunLog 3/5/19

Since last Tuesday’s speed workout, I have known that today’s weekly foray into my training plan was not going to be about speed, but instead I would be focusing on improving my strength (mental and physical) while using the Hansons Half Marathon Method.

Strength running is not one of my strengths through the years and I will be honest it is a part of my training that I have assiduously avoided whenever possible over the years.

I purposely have been doing positive self-talk and affirmations regarding this workout. Which is something that I haven’t done in a long time.

In other words the planned 6 x 1.0 mile repeats at 8.0 mph, with .25 recoveries scared the shit out of me. I have never attempted that many mile repeats, so I was going into the great unknown.

Now with all the training I have done over the past couple of months, I was pretty sure that I could do it. Especially, since I have done some pretty hard workouts that should have set me up for success today.

Still…well you runners out there you understand.

It was a beautiful day outside, though a bit chilly to start and down-back was in really great shape, but I had already planned on doing treadmill duty this morning.

Bennie and I headed out for his longer walk down-back and I was thinking positive thoughts about how great I was going to do on my workout this morning. However, of course that meant that this morning there would be something that would attempt to really throw me off and it just about did. Continue reading “A Workout That I NEVER Dared to do Before – RunLog 3/5/19”