Thursday, November 29, 2007

Thursday 11-29-07

After last Saturday's long run, my left foot has been hurting; so much so that I have decided to lay off running for the remainder of the time before the marathon. I am going to cross train instead. Both yesterday and today I swam one mile at the Y during lunch. I have really tried to increase my speed and I feel much stronger. The only problem, though, is it seems my times are no faster. It took me 44 and 43 minutes respectively for one mile which is not faster than I was doing six months ago. It is still a good workout, however.

For anybody interested, there will be a Masters Swimming program taught at the downtown Y starting in January from 5-6 AM on M,W,F. There must be 12 people enrolled, however, for the class to be held.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Tuesday 11-27-07

The weather this morning was clear and cool, a perfect morning for running. I ran 6 miles at a little slower than a 8:30 pace which is fast for me. I never would have imagined three months ago I could run a 10K this fast. That just goes to show you what kind of progress you can make in a structured training program. This was a good run, legs were strong, wind was good and pain in knee and left foot was manageable.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Monday 11-26-07

It was pouring rain this morning but I was indoors anyway doing cross training; 30 minutes on the elliptical machine and 30 minute swim. I hate the pool at the downtown Y opening at 6:00 instead of 5:00; it is too crowded. I got new shoes yesterday so I will wear them this week and next and see if they can get broken in enough to wear them in the marathon.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Saturday 11-24-07

With only two weeks to go before the marathon, the training runs will be mainly maintenance runs as the miles will decrease up until race day. Except for today when I was determined to make a long run to test my endurance. The weather down on the the riverwalk this AM was cold and windy and I really was not dressed warmly enough. I started at the convention center and headed south towards Ft. Benning. At the turn around point, the Garmin read 11.25 miles and when I headed in the other direction the wind was STIFF. It stayed that way for most of the return run and it didn't help that my feet and ankles hurt. This run of 22.5 miles today is my longest one yet and I will have to say I am as ready for the race as I can be. I have decided the marathon training experience for me has turned out to be more of an exercise in injury prevention and pain management than anything. Maybe it's that way for a lot of people, I don't know.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Tuesday 11-20-07

As the workouts shorten in length the next two weeks, I am trying to focus more on speed in my weekly runs. Today I ran 7 miles in just under an 8:30 pace which is the fastest run of this length I have done in a long time. I actually set my Garmin Forerunner up with a virtual training partner set at 8:45 pace and I obviously finished ahead. I felt really good except for a very sore left knee. What is even better about the run is that the course is pretty hilly with a couple of grueling 1/2 mile hills thrown in.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Monday 11-19-07

I have only three weeks to go for the race in Huntsville. My training is beginning to taper off now and today I did only 60 minutes of cross training; 30 minutes on the elliptical machine and 30 minutes of swimming. I was supposed to run three miles Sunday but did not; opting instead to let my knee rest. I had a good run Saturday but it left my knee pretty sore.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Saturday 11-17-07

I went to the riverwalk this morning a little later than I wanted but got off around 7:45. Temp was in the 30's and I had on gloves, hat and long sleeves. Beautiful sunny morning and it was a pleasurable run. I made it out to Ft. Benning and realized they had closed the gates onto the base because of the wackos in the SOA Watch. I ran up Lumpkin Rd. and saw a band of about 30 of them at the gate. Turned around and did a few little spurs to make a 16 miler. For the most part I hurt in the areas I expected; my left knee, OUCH! My left side is mucho sore. I am gaining the stamina I am going to need in only THREE weeks.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Thursday 11-15-07

Thankfully I awoke this morning to rain, which we need much more than my morning run so I postponed that until after work. I went to the downtown Y and started my run from there. The schedule was for a 6-7 mile tempo run so I started at a slow 9:30 pace and after a mile ramped up to an 8:30 pace and kept this up for 5 miles of the run. I felt good except for the nagging left knee pain. I finished 7.3 miles in a respectable 1:03 for a 8:42 average. Good run. Weather was nice except for a stiff northerly wind which I encountered on the return northern leg up the riverwalk.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Wednesday 11-14-07

It is a good thing today was an easy, short day of running. I covered 4 miles at a snail's pace of 9:50. I guess I needed the rest from the 10 miler I did yesterday. It is odd and frustrating how various aches and pains affect my running each day. Today my knees hurt. My left one felt like someone hit right on the cap with a hammer. It is even sore to the touch. I don't know what has caused this but I hope it disappears as quickly and quietly as it came.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Tuesday 11-13-07

Today was scheduled to be a 7-8 mile quality run. My hopes and prayers have been that I can solve the problem of my painful ankle and calves. This morning's run proved to be an answered prayer! For some reason, I had no pain in my ankle and consequently my calves felt comfortable. Since this was supposed to be a quality run I decided to do fartleks. I set the Garmin to alert every 1/2 mile and I ran that distance at an 8:30 pace or better and the next 1/2 mile at a 9:30 easy pace. I did this for most of the 10 miles I covered in 1:29 for a 8:54 average. Great run this morning! Perfect weather, could not have asked for better.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Monday 11-12-07

4-1/2 miles this morning. Easy pace as I am trying to deal with the pain in my right ankle. I feel like I am in adequate shape for the marathon coming up from a conditioning standpoint. I had no soreness in my legs from the 20 mile run Saturday and even felt like on that day I could have easily run 26. But, the pain in my ankle is the kicker. I have got to solve this in order to feel confident. I've still got 3 good weeks of training to go and 1 rest week before the Dec. 8th event in Huntsville, AL.

Sunday 11-11-07

After the long run yesterday, my calves and right ankle were pretty sore. There is something going on with that ankle and I don't know if it is a muscle strain or maybe the beginnings of shin splints. Either way, it is causing me to change my running stride and this is going to take some adjustments. I decided to ride my bike today for my 90 minutes of cross training I normally do on Monday. It is hard to squeeze that workout in during the week so i did it today. I rode from my house to Riverwalk down to Ft. Benning and back for a little over 24 miles.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Saturday 11-10-07

Sometime some things are just not meant to happen. Last Saturday, Alabama was not meant to beat the LSU Tigers and I was not meant to finish my 18 mile run. Well, this Saturday was different. I had already decided instead of running the scheduled 15 mile run for this week I was going to make up the long run I missed from last week. I got to the Riverwalk a little before 7:00 ready for a good day of running. After the first 2 or 3 miles, it was evident my right ankle was going to be a problem. Evidently I hurt it last week and the only thing that gives it relief is to run very flat-footed or even up on my toes. So I altered my running posture to do that. This worked well for most of the run until the very end when my calves started cramping from the extra stress put on them from running on my toes.

Despite the nagging ankle, however, I really felt strong and ran all the way into Fort Benning to the end of 10th Division Rd. where I turned around. ( I wonder if it is OK for me to run there because I saw a sign that read "No Runners or Joggers") When I got back to Rotary Park I had made 18 miles but I decided to keep running and try to make 20. So I ran on down the walk for a mile and turned around. I finished 20.5 miles. I was not sure of the time, however, because I was using a new Garmin Forerunner I bought and it got screwed up somewhere along the way. Neither the total time nor the distance was even close to accurate. Anybody, what could I have done wrong with it?

Anyway, a great run and another milestone reached.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Thursday 10-8-07

Today was supposed to be a 7-8 mile tempo run. I got out on a cold morning at 5:00 and after warming up, I decided to make it a little longer. I felt really good and finished 9.4 miles at a 8:59 pace. I had little if any pains, though I was pretty fatigued by the end. Good run.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Wednesday 11-7-07

Five miles this AM on my regular Midtown course. Weather was chilly, around 35 degrees. I wore gloves, long sleeves and skull cap-just right. I felt really good. Time was almost 47 minutes so pace was not super fast but I ran relatively pain free which was unusual.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Monday 11-5-07

Today is cross training day. Swam 3/4 mile at the Y in 34 minutes during lunch. It was a good swim. I felt like I could have swum for hours, but had to get back to work. After work it was back to the Y for almost an hour on the elliptical machine. I guess this will suffice for my scheduled 90 minutes of cross training.

Sunday 11-4-07

Back from Tuscaloosa about 6:00. Ran an easy 3 miles. It felt good to work some of the soreness out of my calves after yesterday's fiasco.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Saturday 11-3-07

Today's run was meant to be an 18 miler; the farthest yet. I had a few difficulties today and I ended up crashing and burning. To begin with, we were out of town for a football game and I planned on running on a course in Tuscaloosa, AL which would take me down a busy four lane parkway with some loooong rolling hills. Before it was all over I developed serious cramps in my calves and had to cut the run short and even then I had to walk for the last two miles. It was frustrating and disappointing not to be able to finish this run. I think the hilly course and my left heel pain caused the cramps in my calves. I hope this is not an indication that I will not be able to cover 26.2. I am going to keep on training, though, and see what happens.