Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Back at it.

We stepped back and did 2 mile at 4-2 intervals. To be honest it wasn't as easy as I thought it was going to be. I have a lot of soreness including my ankle. But we are back at it. That is a good thing indeed.
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Tuesday, July 27, 2010


So it has been quite a while since I updated this. This is largely due to an epic failure at the last 5K. I sprained my ankle. Then I tried to go back after a week and ended up throwing up due to heat exhaustion.

Suzy however has continued to progress. I confess I am frustrated that 1. I am not able to keep up with her anymore and 2. I am feeling guilty because I am holding her back. She has also wanted me to update this blog for awhile. But for all of the above reasons I have neglected it.

However she is not to be denied. Sometimes my wife is a force of nature. This past weekend she took Hal Higdon's 8K schedule, adapted it to our needs and posted it on the door. Most importantly, she decided we are starting from the beginning of it. Which is what I really needed but what too ashamed to ask for. Good for you Suzy.

Last night we began it again with a 30 min walk. It wasn't as pleasant as it might have been as sometimes we bring along outside stresses to the workout. But the weather was awesome and most importantly she got me out there again when my motivation was flagging. I hope I am not holding her back too much but I am lucky to have such a great partner.

Tonight we run 2 miles. Back in the saddle...
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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Couple of 2.5 milers

We got up early Saturday morning and ran 2 ½ miles at a 5/2 ratio. It was difficult but we managed to finish it in just over 31 minutes. I calculated it out and that puts out pace for the run portion at 11:06/m, the same as the last 5K. The good news is we ran a lot more and walked a lot less so things are looking up for the next one. Monday’s run was less encouraging same distance, same ratio but about two minutes slower. It was a lot hotter though which almost certainly accounts for the difference. I was fighting nausea from the halfway point.

Tonight, we have a 35 minute walk scheduled and tomorrow our last set of 5/2s but it is only a 2 miler so maybe we can push a little harder.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Signed up again

Oop s we did it again. That’s right we signed up for another one. Our next 5K is Saturday, July 10th. It is kind of soon after the last one but we are most treating them as training runs trying to increase our interval and distance. Next Saturday is a scheduled 3 mile run so why not get a T-Shirt as well?

We did our last 4/2 last night. The plan was to only go 2 miles. I am a little achy today from it but I have to say we did it with style. We finished it in 25:10.
Today is a total off day, nothing scheduled. Tomorrow is just a 30 minute walk. Saturday begins 5/2 intervals.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

New Goals

Well, we upped the interval to 4/2 last night. Heat index was set at about the 9th level of Hell and the humidity was so high it would have been easier to breathe if I had gills. That being said somehow I managed to complete 6 sets. Suzy was talkative all the way through.

We have decided to do another 5K in about two weeks and a 5 miler about 5 weeks after that. The 5 mile training plan calls for a 3 mi run on that Saturday which is why we decided to do the 5K.

Tonight calls for a 30 minute walk. Very nice… I need it.

Monday, June 28, 2010

5K and Done

74 Degrees and Sunshine – which felt pretty darn hot to me. Despite Suzy having a serious case of prerace nerves we managed to get to the starting line. Our plan was to run 3/2s all the way through. We did really well and hit the one mile mark at about 12 and a half minutes. We slowed a bit for the remainder of the race but not much. Most of the slowdown was when we came upon what we thought was the water stop and found after we had wasted about a minute that it was the start of another 5K. After getting back on course we found the actual water stop and took and extra 12 seconds walking there to get down some water.

After 8 repeats the finish line was in sight and we ran in. We finished 163rd and 164th with a time of 40:43.3 and 40:43.8. Suzy actually finished a half second faster than I did. We crossed the finished side by side so either her chip foot was out in front and mine wasn’t or she crossed the start a half second after I did. Probably a little bit of both as our gun time was .2 seconds apart. Our per mile pace was 13:08.

Robert met his goal of breaking 30 minutes finishing 93rd overall with a time of 29:11.7. Once Suzy and I dragged ourselves in we all went back out on the course to get Barbara, she finished at 55:35.3.

So after that I finally got my beer. It tasted great. Now we just have to decide what’s next!!

There is another in two weeks and another a month after that. We'll talk and decide if we want to run one or both.

I think we'll try 4/2s today for the training run.


On the course
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Before the run
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Friday, June 25, 2010

The last week

Lot’s to update and very little time to do it so if some spelling errors creep in I hope I may be forgiven.

Long time since updates, my boss has this crazy idea I should be working rather than blogging all day. What is that all about?

Suzy’s OKC weekend in her own words:

“Friday night - heat index 96. Beat up walking path about 2000 ft. ran
2/1s for 19 minutes. Walked the rest. It sucked.

Monday morning - up early due to heat - ran to walmart - 1.34 miles one
way. Flat. Not bad. Proud of myself.”

As for me I ran 1/2s on Friday. Still babying the knee. I am not going down injured again if I can help it.

I also skipped Saturday. For some reason I just didn’t feel up to it. I decided to go for 2 minutes running and 2 minutes walking on Monday. I covered 2.5 miles and it really kicked my butt but the knee seemed ok.

Tuesday – Suzy is back! We decided to walk the whole 5K distance. Just to get a feel. We walked it at a very casual pace and it took us about 56 minutes.

Wednesday - Suzy ran my 2/2s with me. It was hot. Very hot. We got pretty close to the 2.5 mile mark. It wasn’t as bad Monday but it was hotter. Last training workout done. Time is up.

Thursday – Walked about a million miles at Dorney Park. Got sunburned, blistered and exhausted. Not the greatest preparation but it sure was fun.

Today – Thinking a lot about what interval I will run tomorrow 3/2s or if I feel real froggy 4/2s. I’m going to have to. With the injury, I just didn’t have the time to work up to doing the full thing. Suzy probably can do the whole thing. Time will tell, in fact about 20 hours will tell.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

On the 10 Day...

Well the 5K is on the 10 Day forecast now. They are calling for a high of 86 and a low of 69, mostly sunny. This is good news as I imagine 8:30 in the morning will be closer to the low than the high.

Yesterday Suzy and I ran together. We did my 1/2 intervals, which she says the running part is way faster than her pace. This is good news as even though I am behind I can help her with some pace work.

My knee was pretty sore but it seemed better than Monday, maybe I am now bringing it along at the right pace.

Yesterday was our last workout together for a bit as she is off to OKC tomorrow. I’ll have to motivate myself out the door Friday, Saturday and Monday. I told her to just run two one day and try three another. Just to try the distance. We’ll probably get in one final run on Wednesday and will skip next Friday as it is the evening before the 5K.

My new training plan calls for a sharp increase in the intervals next week but I am not sure I am going to do the full Week 2 increase they prescribe. I may repeat Week 1 or come up with my own Week 1.5. I’m not as concerned with the increase in Run time (the first interval they prescribe is 2/1 and it jumps to 3/1 and then 4/1) as I am in the decrease in recovery time.

I’m considering a week 1.5 that goes 2/2, 3/2 then 4/2 or maybe even stays at 2/2. I’ll just have to see where I am or more precisely where my knee is after this Saturday’s run.

There are five of us so far on the Team for Saturday; Suzy and I of course, our son Robert, daughter Barbara and my brother Andrew. I am trying to talk my son Sean into joining us but he hasn’t confirmed yet.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Return to the Road

Suzy started her new distance yesterday. She covered about two miles and ran/walked the final half.

I decided to run some very short intervals. 1 min run/2 min walk x10. Ironically I covered more than the two miles. Knee hurt like hell afterwards but has pretty much recovered this morning.

We will be walking today for a recovery.

The 5K is only 11 days out and I have given up all hope of running the whole thing. Most likely I will just run whatever interval I am on all the way through it. Suzy however has a shot at it.
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Monday, June 14, 2010

Suzy hits 2 Miles!

Suzy managed to run the whole two miles. I think she will do very well in the 5K. She is ready to slightly increase the distance of her workout. I on the other hand have been sidelined and should probably decrease my workout.

I still have some minimal pain but am determined to make a serious attempt today to get back today at least to doing something. I am going to walk/run the original two mile course just to see how it feels. I think I’ll cut back to three days a week until after the 5K. Perhaps with more warm-up, more stretching and more rest I can get back on track.

Suzy is going to extend her distance by a half a mile. If you look back at the map I posted she is going to go through the mile mark turn up 452 and turn around at Hall Dr. She will be able to set herself a new benchmark from there.

She wants to stay with me but I am not going to let her. She is doing well and I won’t let her use me to hold her back. Besides I’ll catch up before she knows it. I progress well when healthy.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Rest and reevaluation

Today is Suzy’s scheduled rest day. I, as you know, am way off schedule. Suzy has Physical Therapy tonight and is going to ask about some stretches to prevent reinjures. I am toying with the idea of walking tonight. I keep repeating the following to myself…

1. No Running, don’t even wear the running shoes wear walking shoes.
2. Walk means walk.
3. Slow and easy. Might take the dog.
4. Contrary to the popular axiom - No Pain = Gain; Pain = No Gain

I need to set these rules for myself. Sometimes I have the impression that through willpower alone I can push my body well past its mere mortal couch potato limits. I am of course correct in that assumption and therein lies one of my problems. I can push that hard through the force of my will alone. But I see where that gets me.

Next problem, I think we have really been cheating on the warm-up. Sure we walk to the end of the block but is that enough?

Stretching – yes we do stretch but we don’t have a stretching routine. Need to get one for after warm up and after run.

My wife, I think, is under the mistaken impression that I wish to work out without her. Nothing could be further from the truth. I want to do something so that I have the ability and the will to work out with her next time.

Goals. The original goal was to jog the entire 5K. I realize now that I may have to restructure that goal. My new goal is to jog as much as possible pain free and walk the rest.

I am also thinking of altering the training schedule (at least for me) to no more than 3 or 4 days a week, maybe I'll do some walking inbetween. Tendonitis is an over use injury. I would be stupid to think I haven’t been, well…overusing (my tendons that is, no AA or NA meetings for me). And the doc said two on, one off is a lot but he didn’t want to discourage me. He doesn’t, pain however I find that very discouraging.

16 Days to the 5K – Tendonitis be Damned

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Suzy runs alone

Suzy had to do yesterday's run on her own. She pushed through and made it past the mile and a half mark. She did learn/relearn some lessons. Hydrate! And no hot dogs before a run. She did return only slightly worst for wear.

I on the other hand felt terrible that I could not go with her. But healing has to be a priority. I went and saw the doctor today and he diagnosed tendinitis. He prescribed me some anti-inflammatory drugs. I also went by Philadelphia Runner. Joe checked the wear on my shoes to make sure all is well with them. The shoes are good. He recommended some new stretches for me to try. All in all I am feeling much better and hope to return soon.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Plenty to catch up on, I’ve been a little distracted.

Saturday - Excellent day! We struggled a bit to reach our mile mark but turned about with grim purpose. Just a bit farther than yesterday, and a bit farther, and farther on we went. In the end, we extended our distance from a mile to a mile and a half. A huge victory; we are halfway to our 5K goal. We were feeling so good we were able to go out that evening. I did feel a funny feeling in my knee. I really should have listened to my body then. But I didn’t.

Sunday – Suzy did well. We had agreed to do just a mile and a half on the track she did just fine. I on the other hand met disaster. Pain flared in both knees and I couldn’t complete even a quarter mile. I walked it out trying to run now and then but it was no go.

Monday – Sunday night thru Monday was a study in pain for me. The knees got MUCH worse. In fact walking became a greater challenge than that first mile did. I mean walking around the house. I would be lying if I said it wasn’t discouraging for me. I really was convinced I was done. Made a Doctor appt. for Wednesday.

Tuesday – Pain is MUCH less. Is this good news or not? I am unsure as to the underlying cause. Could it be the new shoes? The guy at the store said I was tough to fit as far as shoe type goes. Did it perhaps get the wrong kind? Is it caused by when I try to pick up speed? I am guilty of that when a stopping point is sight and at the track I tried to sprint the straight-aways, assuredly a bad idea but I was mad. So tomorrow I am going to check with the doctor and I am going to go by the running store and see if they think it might be shoe related. I was and am discouraged but I am not ready to quit just yet. The most pressing question I face is what to do about tonight. Suzy will certainly run but will I be joining her? I’d certainly rather tell the doctor what IS wrong rather than what WAS wrong. Same goes for the shoe guys and I do feel better today. I guess I will wait until tonight and see how I feel.

19 Days to the 5K – Future Uncertain

Friday, June 4, 2010

Rest Day

Well I noticed that my wife has been commenting on my blog as me. So for reference the comments are hers not mine.

The knees are ouched there is no point in denying it anymore. They were really bad last night; I had intolerable weights on my legs (aka bedsheets). To be completely honest while I was up at 3 AM with the pain I had some doubts. I keep yelling at myself (mentally), “Are you (insert expletive) crazy? “; “You are (expletive again) 40 years old!!”

They are a little better this morning with some motrin and my self talk is a little better. But you know you have a problem when driving hurts. I am going to have to ice them tonight and probably work some quad exercises into my routine. I have been reading everything I can get my hands on but I kind of know what is wrong. This isn’t my first rodeo.

Last time this happened and I went to physical therapy for it they had me strengthen the quads. Apparently the quads are vital to running but not strengthened by it. Well not enough anyway. Who designed this contraption? Stairs the absolute bane of my existence might become my salvation.

Anyway I could talk about my legs all day but I wanted to further bask in yesterday’s victory. A mile is no small thing really. After all it is now a matter of how many miles we can do as opposed to the ability to do one. We can. We did.

The future looks good. The spot where we stopped yesterday, this is slightly back toward home from the intersection of W. Duttons Mill and 452 for those following the map, starts a long down slope. If we can just approach that as a recovery I think we can go quite as ways toward home. Tomorrow will tell.

22 days to the 5K

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The conquest of the Mile

My knees hurt all day today. Suzy's back was the same. Neither of us felt like running, hell I didn't feel like walking.

We were determined though today is a run day and we were going to do it. Suzy had set her sights on the turn around at one mile. She told me the whole way we were going to make it. I was thinking that she should tell my knees. In the end though we not only made it but turned around and ran a little way back!

We also ran the last 1/4 mile to the end which was excellent.

Today was a milestone day. The Mile mark is conquered!

23 Days to the 5K
13 Training runs left

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Hill to 1 Mile

We conquered most of it. Suzy and I are fast working out our running partner communications. This progress is of course complicated by the fact that yours truly spends most of the run gasping for breath and grunting one word replies. While my lovely wife can recite Shakespeare while we run. In short she has more wind.

All in all a good run, not great but we made real good progress.

24 Days to the 5K

14 more training runs

Attack The Hill

Got some good news. My brother Andrew will be in town for the 5K and wants to run it. This is turning into a real family affair! He did ask if I was planning on running any particular pace… Well… no not really… I think my goal at this point is to survive.

After last time’s heat I am really worried about today’s run. I talked it over with Suzy and we both feel like maybe we went too fast. We are going to concentrate on taking it slow but steady today. For my part my goal is to drink at least 4 liters of water today in preparation.

The thing is I always have these grandiose visions of what the next run will be like right up until it is actually time to do it. Sure we can finish the mile; I say that now sitting, well not comfortably but serenely if nothing else behind my computer keyboard. But tonight when I am gasping for breath just trying to survive to the spot we finished off on Monday; not so much. So I’ll make no predictions on when we will hit the mile mark.

Stairs have become the bane of my existence. My knees are really sore and although it only feels like soreness rather than injury, stairs are problems. Down is as bad as up so no real relief there.

Suzy may have pulled a muscle we’ll have to watch that. She also says she is experiencing some ankle pain. My own ankle (the one I had surgery on) has been aching too. All of this and we haven’t even gone a mile without walking.

I published the route in a previous post. For reference the 3.04 miles refers to out and back. The one mile mark is pretty close to the corner of 452 and w Duttons Mill. We have all most reached the Ice Works driveway without walking. Once we reach the 1 mile mark we turn back so when/if we can reach that mark and back home we’ll start moving farther along the course. I’m not holding my breath but we’ll get there eventually.

It is all uphill to the 1 mile mark…Today’s goal… Attack the hill!!!

24 days to the 5K

15 training runs left…

The Route

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

3/4 Mile and the HEAT

The Memorial Day workout was certainly a memorable one. It was my day to have problems. Although I wasn’t running a watch on us; we definitely ran faster which for us is to say we went from snail 1.0 to snail 1.5.

We waited until 7 but it was still HOT. So I was still contenting with blister problems and I didn’t do well in the heat. Despite these obstacles we passed our goal point and finished up around the ¾ mile mark. We weren’t able to run anymore after that as my head was pounding and I felt sick. So we walked the rest of it out.

We can now see the turnaround point from where we are finishing, that’s the good news. The bad news is it is ¼ mile of uphill running to get there.
As to me, I think I had a mild case of heat exhaustion, definitely not a good thing. Will try to hydrate better and prevent future occurrences. I am certainly paying the price today. I am sluggish and every part of me is aching.

Suzy reports she is fine and dandy, I’m jealous. Today is a rest day and I need it.

25 Days to the 5K

Sunday, May 30, 2010

New Shoes

We took our rest day yesterday and bought new running shoes. We went to Philadelphia Runner and were helped by a nice guy named Joe. He was very knowledgeable and fitted us based on our foot types and walking gait. As usual I was the difficult one to fit.

We ran today and made some decent progress. We haven't yet reached the 3/4 mile mark but we are closing in on it. Today was harder for Suzy than me which is different than the last couple of runs. The good news is she didn't have that snapping in the back of her knee. The bad news is I got some blisters from my news shoes. I am going to try taping my feet to mitigate this but if it doesn't work I may have to return these shoes. This is too bad as they are really comfortable except for the rubbing at the heels.

I have high hopes we will reach the 3/4 mark tomorrow without walking...

27 Days to the 5K

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Aches and pains

Well we managed to increase our distance by 20 yards or so yesterday. I also realized that the course we are running uphill if only slightly. There really is no avoiding it around here.

The pain today is all inclusive. I ache all over, Suzy doesn't have it quite as bad and I'd be lying if I said there wasn't any resentment. We had discussed going shoe shopping today. I am not sure if we will though. Today is a rest day.
28 Days to the 5K
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Friday, May 28, 2010


Tired in and of itself is not a bad thing. I should be tired if I am putting in the required effort.

There was no way I was getting out of bed this morning. The body was quite happy to be unconcious and completely ignored my pleas to awaken. It was like having weights attached not only to me physically but to my mind which kept wanting to be pulled down into that well of deep sleep.

The good news is soreness is minimal for both of us which(hopefully) means that our level of effort is right. Suzy complained of a little snapping in her tendon behind her knee. That worries me.

I confess that I am looking forward to todays run with both dread and excitement. This morning I was sure there was no way I could make that 35MPH sign that marks where we stopped yesterday. I dread the possibility of failure but am excited by the chance at a small victory.

You need the small victories to keep going.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

1/2 a mile

Suzy after day one of running for mileage. We got 1/2 mile before we walked. Not a bad start at all. Tomorrow we strive to beat it.

30 days to the 5K
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The begining.

It was Suzy's idea to run. First a 5K and eventually the Marathon. I am starting this blog to document the progress we make. This may indeed be the only entry but I hope not.

First of all we are signed up for the 5K. It is on Jun 26th in Wilmington.

We have done two days of training so far. It was 9 minutes of walking to a minute of jogging for one hour each day on Monday and Tuesday. So in essence we haven't built a base at all but we did get off the couch. Well to be fair I got off the couch, Suzy has been exercising some. We are both sore but that is to be expected, nothing feels like trouble yet.

Today we will begin building a base. I have laid out a mile out and back route, so we'll be doing a total of two miles. The goal today is a slow jog without walking just as far as we can to set a benchmark. After our first walk break we'll run/walk as best we can to finish the distance, my guess is it will be mostly walking.

30 Days to the 5K