From the Back of the Pack
I might always be in the back of the running pack, but I'm addicted to it! When I miss more than a day it affects my energy, attitude, and the rest of life in general! I have had a lot of "character" building runs in the deep snow, extreme nose hair freezing cold, ankle high rain, and gale force winds over the past twenty five years and find some of those days to be the most peaceful rewarding outings of all! I'm one of those runners who is slow and steady, but goes forever and ever without ever getting tired.
May 25, 2008: character building?
I have had this long time burning "desire" to run home from the general area I work in, which is kinda near the start of the 1/2 marathon. Thursday I finally had the chance to pursue my "desire" and I'd like to share this unique experience with you.
A couple of coworkers kindly allowed me to carpool with them to work last Thursday and another helpful coworker willingly dropped me off at Scenic 61 and Ryan Road so I could begin my running journey home.
The weather was absolutely dreamy with temperatures in the high 50's or low 60's, a nice tailwind, beautiful waves crashing against the rocky shoreline, light traffic...wonderful conditions for a 12 mile or so run!
As I reached mile 3 or so, certain urges in the lower bowel area began to take place...as I searched and searched for a big enough clump of trees to feel better I began to wonder if someone's front yard or polluting the big lake would be the better choice...at about mile 4.5 or so, the houses stopped and my worries were relieved.
As I continued what is a long run for me to the area of Brighton Beach I had the tough decision to make of whether to take London Road or Superior Street towards my final destination. Superior Street was chosen to avoid the potential uphill running of a few extra blocks at some point.
I took a right before Brighton Beach and went towards the railroad tracks to the dirt road that would take me to Superior Street. For the first few blocks after my turn I took my life in my own hands by running across the expressway, there was no sidewalk and the street is a concrete like substance which makes the legs long for the soft surfaces of the trail. I figured I could navigate a zig zag path that would get me up the hill in the least painful way. Unfortunately it dawned on me a bit too late that I would be forced to delay my zig zags up the hill until after 33rd or so unless I wanted to add a few extra miles and uphills...and my character did not need quite that much extra!
When biking or driving Superior street, it seems fairly level...what a deceptive perception that is! ITS NOT FLAT! The majority of my Superior Street jaunt felt much like it was going up a hill. Chi running or not, a hill is a hill especially after a long day of work, and IEP meeting, and a run the day before! I'm kinda wimpy so this is a lot for me.
I finally got to the portion where I could begin my zig zagging up the hill and discovered that the streets are just as hilly as the avenues in this town! Each time I attempted to go up an avenue to find a flat or downhill street I was greeted by yet another up uphill!
Being a bit directionally challenged, I somehow ended up on Kent during my attempts to find that perfect route. I decided to take the scenic route past Chester and over to my house where I knew that despite adding a couple more uphills, I would evenutally be treated to a couple of downhills.
After finally making it home, I was completely sleep tired exhausted...needing to lay down on the floor and just rest. My body composition includes an enormous amount of energy that continues even after races and long runs...this one just built so much character that it hurt!
One 12 mile flat run previous to this one and the couple of 15k's should have adequately prepared me for this 12.6 mile task...I am attributing the extra uncomfortableness to the majority of the final 7 miles or so being uphill...!
Did I learn a lesson...heck no! I'm planning to carpool and run home again this week! The more "character" a person can build...the better! Anyone want to join me???
May 11, 2008: Go Chi!
I got to attend the Chi Running clinic yesterday at Snowflake and was a bit skeptical prior to trying it. After my run today, I'm convinced it is THE way to go. Why didn't I learn this earlier? This should be the way all kids are taught to run in school, track, and more!
Last week I ran the 15k Spirit course just for fun and was in a lot of pain during and after. It was very hard to breath on the uphills, hard to finish, and I had to stop a lot. I did stop my watch last week each time I stopped since it was just a run and my time was 1:40 with the stopping, so I figure my "real time" was more like 1:50. I hurt the next two days too!
Today when I ran the same course for the "race" using the Chi principals I learned yesterday, it was a completely painless run, with easy breathing, easy uphills, fast downhills and a much faster time...well not compared to most people, just faster than last week for me....1:29...with not much effort. I could have gone faster but since I was trying this out and not sure how I would feel towards the end if I pushed it, I chose a slower cadence and also kept it slower. I finished and felt fine, no pain and completely pain free afterwards too!
I will be bringing the clinic up to Duluth again and strongly suggest either reading the book, watching the DVD, or attending one of his clinics here or in the Twin Cities. I think this will change running for me and man...why isn't this common knowledge for everyone? It makes sense and is amazing!
April 16, 2008: Arizona
This is a live Chuckwalla!
April 8, 2008: Dry trails??
I have found one dry trail to run on and am wondering what others people have found to be dry? Park Point's nature trail has just a couple of slush spots, but no water or mud...any others like that?
How is Hartley? Lester? Chester?
April 3, 2008: Expensive Saucony shoes, but why???
For those of you who are poor like me due to the job you have or being in graduate school, I found a website that resells shoes people were unable to return to the store due to wearing them once or twice. If you have shoes you tried and they just don't fit right or they are not your style, they also take them and sell them for you...not sure how that works.
Well, I purchased a pair of those $164 Saucony paramount shoes this way for considerably less than their retail value. I had them shipped to AZ so I could use them now knowing that I will have awhile to wait before the conditions are dry enough in MN.
I am puzzled as to why the high price!? I've been a Saucony only runner for over 25 years and these shoes certainly do not impress me in any way! In my opinion, there have been many models that were much more comfortable than these! They are not bad shoes, but I fail to see how the price tag can be so high!
If anyone wants information on the website I found, please email me...but if you make a lot of money, please go to the local stores, Jarrow, Athlete's Foot, Duluth Running Company...keep our local stores in business!