Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Sandblast beach run & the start of Training!

I had a minor scare this past Monday, when I bent down to pick something up, and had my right knee lock up on me. This happens from time to time, but I always get right up. This time it had me in pain, and limp bad enough to scare me to see my doctor. After a check of it, he prescribed rest and Naproxen, and by Thursday I was pain free and able to run, so I ran 6 miles.
I was hoping for a full week of running, since I had a 4 mile "beach race" on Saturday. Oh well, at least it was a minor injury, and I am relatively healthy headed into the 18 week marathon training.

Now the run part, what better way to celebrate your 43rd B-day, than with a race! In Wildwood, Saturday there was a race I have been wanting to do for years, and everything worked out that I was able to do it. The SandBlast beach run, has a 2 or 4 mile race, on the beach, from 15th street in North Wildwood, to the Crest and back.

As my luck would have it, it was a windy night! I asked one of the beach patrol how strong they were, and 15 mph sustained. So that meant the 1st two miles where into the wind! I had never done a race on the beach, so I was looking forward to the challenge.

My only goal, without training for this, and with pretty much no running the week before, I wanted to keep it around 8 min. miles. I met and was talking with a fellow runner at the start, who also was doing his 1st beach race, and was hoping to be around the 7:30 avg. I wanted to stick with him, but lost him in the crowd at the start. I did try a lot of drafting off the runners in front of me, but with the lost week of running, my legs felt like they weighted a ton.

I knocked off the 1st mile in 7:36. It felt like a struggle, so I wasn't sure what I would have left for the rest of the race.

The wind was a killer, it felt a lot stronger than the 15mph I was told. I could feel that I backed off and ran the 2nd mile at 8:06, which would be my slowest mile of the race.
As usual in the shorter races that I run, I always seem to get passed by the 10 yr old girl, or the person with the stroller. I had a man fly past with a stroller, on the beach, in the 3rd mile. It was nice to have the wind at your back for the final 2 miles, which I think was helping stroller guy. Mile 3 was a 7:42 mile, and I had found a group of 3 runners to stick with for the last mile. The legs were toast, but I kept pushing, and was lucky enough to stay with the group until about the last 1/10, when they kicked it in. I did the 4th mile in a nice wind aided 7:03, for a finish of 30:29, by my garmin. No age group award on this day, there were a lot of good runners in this race.

It was a fun race, and hopefully I'll be able to run this again, with the proper training before hand.

Now not even 12hours later, I was up and out the door to start my Marathon training. It was tough to get up at 6:00am, and run 10 miles! I did an out and back to Cape May. Not one of my best runs, but I averaged 9:30 miles, best was mile 3, a 9:14 mile and slowest, mile 6, a 9:44.

What was nice about the run was the last 2 miles were at 9:19.

Our last day of our mini-vacation, was today, Tuesday, and I got out and did an out and back to North Wildwood, with a finish on the boardwalk. I had a 6 miler planned, but somehow I messed up my course, and added a mile, not that I mined. I did the 7 miler right in my time range at 9:02. and had my best mile as my last. Hopefully that's a good sign of things to come.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Back in the swing of training

I know in my last post, I moaned of motivation, and I am still struggling with it, but I know what I have to do, and I will do it.

I had a nice week mileage wise, to get back into the training mode. I checked my stats from last year at this time, and I had just finished up with a weekly total of 28.1 miles. This year, I was at 26.9, and that was without my Thursday run, so I feel much more confident after finding 2008's results.

Last week was super busy with my son's baseball, and I was still able to get my running in. I was even fortunate enough to get my trail run in with the group on Saturday, before his game. They hooked me up with a nice run, and even shortened it a bit, to get me out of there with enough time to shower before leaving for the game.

Now before today's last game, I got up early and did a nice 10 mile out and back run.
As I was checking my past history last nite, I was shocked to find out that my longest run, since running the Long Branch 1/2 marathon, on May 3rd, was a 9-1/2 miler back in May! I knew I had slacked, but no run of 10+ miles since the 1st weekend in May... that's shocking.

Well, today, I wanted to stay in the 8:45-9:15 range, that's where I want to be at for my long runs. I stayed in that range, and even managed to run my last mile, as my best. It was a struggle during the mid miles. When I got into the 5-8 mile range, I could feel the heaviness in my legs. The lungs felt good, but not the legs! I'm sure it'll be a bit before that goes away.

One new thing I added to my run, was a Nathan Quick draw Elite handheld

I got that last week, and this was the 1st time I had a chance to use it. I had only run with a water bottle, so having something like this felt weird. One thing I learned was I need to make sure my fluids are cold. My water got warm after a few miles.

This Saturday, I found a cool run that I am looking forward to running. I missed out on it the last few years, but the stars have aligned for me to run it this year.


It's a 2 or 4 mile run, on the beach in Wildwood! I have pre registered for the 4 miler, and am looking forward to my 1st beach race!

Nice thing about being downashore next weekend, is I get to do my Sunday 12 mile run at the beach. I'm planning on a running an out and back to Cape May.

10 miles 1:28:39

  1. 8:38
  2. 9:00
  3. 8:52
  4. 8:53
  5. 9:04
  6. 9:05
  7. 9:03
  8. 8:53
  9. 8:45
  10. 8:19

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Inching closer to Marathon Training.

Hard to believe that is already the middle of July, and in a few short weeks, I'll start training for my 2nd Philadelphia Marathon.
Last year, everything was new and exciting. I found a plan, stuck to it, and finished!I was motivated with the thought of failure, not being able to finish.
This year, I am struggling to get motivated to train. I don't know if I still have a "marathon hangover", but I hope, come July 26th, I can flick the switch and get going.
It amazes me to think of the people and teams that can win a championship, and come back and do it again, the next year.
I haven't gone on a "long run" in quite some time.
I had the thrill of running in Wildwood, on the boards, Saturday morning. I normally just run 4 miles, out and back on the boards, but I ran into the Crest, and added 2 miles to my run, making it a 6 miler. My weekday runs are in the 4-6 mile range. Somehow I will need to be in the 6-8 range, for my training.
I have made an effort to start to bump up the mileage. I ran a 7 miler on Tuesday, and ran 6 Wednesday. For the 7 miler, I averaged 8:16's, and for the 6, it was 8:37's.
For my marathon training, I want to be in the 8:45-9:15 range.
I can also feel the shoes starting to go. Hard to believe, I feel like I just got them, but I have had them for 4 months, and looking at my mileage, they have roughly 350 miles on them.
I have 40 miles in the book for July so far, and 606 for the year.
I try and get out for another run on Thursday, and hit the trails on Saturday.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Track Work, a tennis ball, 8 golf balls, 2 ticks and sore hammys!

Most people over the 4th of July weekend, over indulge in fireworks, BBQ, beer, and picnics.

I choose those and added my son's all star baseball games, and running!

Let's start with Friday. My running buds over at TrailRuns decided to do something different and meet early at the track. I knew we were in for it, when they said "track". We did a mile warm up, and got into the meat of the work out.
I'll give you the condensed version.
4 laps, w/ 110 sprints, 15 push-ups, back on the track for a 50yrd dash, up and down the bleachers, and finish with a variety of squats, lunges, etc.
Let's just say it was a killer! I realized that I am the most out of shape, in shape person I know!

When I got up Saturday, to meet the trail group to run in Mercer County Park, I could barely walk. My hamstrings were killing me, and the right hammy is still tight today!

Now I figured that since we killed ourselves on Friday, the trail run would be a nice easy run.
Well, the pace was fine, but the trails, well, if you could call them trails were a killer!
At the start, I found a tennis ball, close to the courts, and since I knew it was a loop we were running, I couldn't leave it there and pick it up later, so I took it.

The first 3+ miles were the usual course, in and out of the trails, whirl bird, no big deal. As we entered the woods and headed towards the dam, that's were the trails became severely overgrown,and we became "bushwhackers"! Now we have had a ton of rain here in June, so on the overgrown trails, some were a mud mess, and you had to be real careful of your footing.

As we navigated the mud, swamps, brush, you name and we ran thru it, we finally hit the dam. Now there were 2 routes we could take, the nice clear trails that we have run hundreds of times, and get back easily to our start, or take the overgrown mud mess trails? You guessed it, we took the route less traveled.

The 2nd half was worse than the 1st. We ran close to the county golf course, and I found 8 golf balls along the way, so I had to run with 3 in each hand, and 2 in my pocket. Which leads to the next mess. I felt something on the side of my face, which turned out to be a tick. Well, that freaked me out, so I started checking myself, and found another one on my leg. Now I was really freaked, and since I was running with a visor, and not a hat, I was sure I was going to find more in my hair. Luckily when I got home, I showered and my wife gave me the once over, and I was found to be tick free!

Our round the lake bushwhacker trail run debacle turned out to be 8.4 miles. I was glad for the length of the run, but those trails were a disaster. It was tough, we had a few close calls, on rolled ankles, and falls, but we managed to survive!

I was hoping to get out and do a long run this morning, before my son's game, but when the right hammy still felt tight, I thought it best to take the day off, and rest. I'll get back out there either Monday or Tuesday. The weather for these parts looks great, so no rain excuses this week!

One bummer that got dropped on my this past week, was I have to go to Dallas for work in Sept. AND don't you know it's the weekend of the ING Philadelphia Distance Run, so looks like I am out for that one. If you are close to Philly, and want to run a 1/2 marathon, by all means this is the race for you! Trust me, it's done right... bands every mile, and pretty flat. It'll give you a glimpse into what the Philly Marathon course is like.
I will be packing the running clothes when I hit Dallas, and will make sure to get my runs in before our seminars!