Saturday, December 29, 2007

Back on Track (Sort Of)

I am back to running but I still feel tired and my cold seems to be hanging around. I ran 6 miles on the treadmill Thursday and 5 miles on Friday. This morning I did my long run with Kenyan Way and held on for 13.5 or so miles. I started with my regular group (3:15 pace group) and for some reason I just kept speeding up. Maybe it was the time off this week but my legs just wanted to go so I went with them. I saw the 3 hour group just ahead of me so I kept going and caught them. They of course were going a bit fast for me but I am stubborn so I stayed with them until we left memorial park. I lost them as we went on the River Oaks route. Every once in a while I would catch glimpses of them but I never caught up again. Oh well there is always next year. I really want to be that fast at some point but it seems that group fluctuates a lot. Sometimes there are a lot of people and then there are days when hardly anyone is there. I like running in a reliable group so who knows what will happen when I actually want to train for a faster marathon. I need people to push me on the long runs. I definitely don't feel ready for the marathon but for better or worse it is coming. Now I guess I need to taper. This has always been a tough thing for me but I am reducing my miles. I know I need to let myself heal so I am stronger for the task ahead.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007


I haven't run in 3 days now so not much to blog about in that area. I did my longest run of 23.67 miles on Sunday with Kenyan Way. The weather was great for running but I think that's what pushed my cold into overdrive. I woke up Saturday with a stuffy nose and a slight earache. These symptoms went away later in the day and I felt better when I woke up Sunday so I got ready for my run. After the run I started feeling stuffy again and things went downhill from there. I have been taking cold medicine vigilantly for 3 days now and I think it is working. Maybe.

Christmas was good with some unexpected presents and a chance to relax with family. The kids had a great time playing with the Wii all day. I even got a chance to try it and I have to admit it was a blast. I like the bowling and I can't wait to try the tennis and golf. I was excited about the GPS for my car which was a total surprise. Now I won't have to call Mike every time I get lost. I am terribly directionally challenged (maybe they can invent a GPS like my watch that speaks directions while you are running). I would be so set with one of those. I hope everyone had a great holiday!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Holiday Hustle

Well we are almost to the finish line as far as the holidays go. I am having trouble keeping up and I feel like it is the end of 26.2 miles or 26.2 days of hustling from one thing to the next. I think tonight was the last of the business related parties for me. Tomorrow my son has his 1st grade class party and that should be it. My family always gathers on Christmas Eve but that is very relaxed and we draw names so we don't have an overwhelming amount of relatives to buy for.
Today I only made it 5 miles of my scheduled 10 miler. I am not going to beat myself up over this because I feel like I need the rest. Either Saturday or Sunday I will do my last long run of 24 miles and then the taper begins. I feel like I need at least another month of quality training but that's usually how I feel this close to a marathon. I think this is amplified this year because I haven't completed a marathon in 2 years. The last time I got a PR in Austin '06 the year of the freeze. I think that was the coldest I have ever been on a run. I pretty much hauled it to the finish line to avoid frostbite.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Neighborhood Run

Tonight I opted to stay close to home and do a tempo/speed run in and around my neighborhood. I started out strong on my first loop and I tried to keep a steady faster pace. After about 4 miles I realized my pace was slowing so I decided to recover some and then do a few fast sets of 60 second sprints with rests between. I ended up with 8 miles in 1 hour which I was happy with especially after yesterday's hills. Anyway that is all for today and tomorrow I am planning an easier run of 10 miles with the Clear Lake group. I hope it gets cooler in January.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Hills, Hills, and More Hills

I had another hill workout this morning bright and early. I met the BCRR group for more garages at Mount Bacon. The smell was really strong this morning and it hit me at the worst possible time. Right as I got to floor 8 and felt like I was going to puke there was the smell of bacon in the air. Yuck, not what I needed. A great way to start the day. The workout was actually really good and I can feel myself improving. Only time will tell. After the marathon I think I am going to need a nice long rest. I can feel the burn out starting to creep in and it is getting harder to drag myself out of bed. For now I guess my hill workouts are almost at an end as I begin to add more speed. The other day Mike and I discussed the idea of running a marathon a month for the next few months and doing short runs on the off weekends. This sounds interesting but I don't think I could keep up the momentum in between races. Maybe in a few years I will give it a try that way I have something to shoot for. I also still have the goal of not returning to Boston until I qualify under the men's time for my age group (18-34). I have only one more year in this group so I would like to make it before April '09. Again only time will tell....

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Long Run and Belated Sunmart Report

I survived Sunmart last Saturday but barely. This was definitely not my finest hour but rather 6 very slow hours. I never run well in the heat so I was not surprised by this experience. Mainly I wanted to get in the miles but I was rather disappointed in how much I had to walk. I was also rather bothered that I encountered an individual that felt compelled to tell me they followed my running and that this was a very bad performance for me. Just what I needed to hear at mile 22+. I also fell for the first time ever on a run. This really pissed me off but I guess it had to happen sometime. Despite this crappy long run/walk I will continue down the road to Houston and try not to look back.

Now to other brighter topics like my long run today. The weather was not completely ideal but I actually enjoyed this run. We started out on our journey toward 20+ miles and it was a little on the warm side for me. I started to think the predicted cold front had again evaded us. I felt good the entire time and when the rain started it brought a welcome cool down for me. Sometimes I really like the rain and today it just added to an already good run. I thought it was a good experience because after all we may have to brave the same conditions in the marathon. After mile 13 the official run was cancelled but five of us kept going and ventured to the convention center and back to finish the route. We ended with around 20 miles for the day. We figured we were already out there and soaked so we wanted to finish. Most likely I will do one more run of 24 miles before the marathon just to be psychologically ready. I had a great time just splashing through puddles and I am glad there was good company along the way. Some very nice ladies from Team In Training were out there supporting their group and graciously offered us some of their water and Gatorade. I really appreciated that.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Climbing Hills and Shoe Issues

Wow I thought it was cold yesterday. Granted yesterday I waited until 4 pm to venture out on my 8.5 mile run. Today it was a brisk 37 degrees (or so my car said) when we started our journey to the parking garages. I felt a small pain on the side of my knee after my run yesterday which made me a bit nervous. I have been neglecting my weight training and I am worried that my IT band may be complaining because of this (and a few extra miles per week). I iced the knee and felt better today. This will be my last hard workout before the weekend looong run. I was informed today that the first garage we run is about a half mile all the way up which we covered in a little over three minutes. I thought that was pretty good. I would like to aim for this pace on all of my hill repeats. I have some really strong runners pushing me so I think it is possible. We made our way back to the park after our hill climb and finished with a fast 800 meter pickup. So much fun....actually it was!

Shoes are a concern for me right now. For the last 2.5 years I have run in the New Balance 833. I am on my last pair and these have been the best shoes ever. It took me forever to find them so when I found out they were going extinct I stock piled whatever I could find on the internet. I fear I will need a new pair before the Houston marathon. My dilemma is should I wait it out and hope they last or just go to the new model and hope they don't screw anything up. My shoes usually last me 5 months or so (these are 2 months old) but with the higher mileage I am sure they are on the edge. I admit I have never been very methodical about shoes and how long they last. Usually I just wear them until my knees start to complain and then I break out a new pair and things are good. Maybe I should just wait it out and hope for the best...

Monday, December 3, 2007


I never thought I would say this but I am actually hoping for heat in the next few days. When I checked this morning the week looks cold until the weekend. My theory is I would rather have my last few runs before Sunmart be hot so I am in that mindset for Saturday but I suppose it is not to be. I will have to freeze my bottom off and then fry (I do that when it is over 60 degrees) for 31 miles. I ran a warm 10 miler on Sunday which turned out OK. I know Saturday is just a relaxed run for me (if that is possible) but I still dread a miserable training run. The trails at Huntsville are very enjoyable so maybe that will distract me. So far I have never had a fall so I will also focus on maintaining that record.

I was so excited to find out a fellow Kenyanwayer (again with my words) had read my blog. There must be more readers out there because I have people viewing my profile. Maybe they just look at that and skip the blog, who knows. Anyway I guess I have obsessed enough for today....

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Keeping Up The Miles

I am still plugging away and keeping my mileage relatively high. I met the BCRR group on Wednesday night for a tempoesque ( I like to make up words) 10 miles. The group did a loop around Rice to warm up and then went on to the bayou where the real fun started. I was told we may run into some construction on our way but that was a slight understatement. I found myself in the middle of a full construction site trudging along among cranes and other heavy machinery. The mud was thick in places which slowed us to a walk. I was definitely rethinking my choices at that point. We made our way out of the rubble and mud to end with a pretty good faster pace on solid ground for the rest of the workout. I enjoyed myself in the final miles and decided it was a quality workout worth returning for. The interesting scenery actually broke up the monotony of my normal ten milers.

When I woke the next morning my legs were not happy so I decided to save my 5 miler for that evening. I took Friday off and did my 18 or so today. I had originally planned to do 22 but was advised by our pacer (a very respected runner) to cut that back because I plan to run Sunmart next weekend. I am trying to make a real effort to have some self control and dial back the miles when appropriate. I still had a nagging feeling that I should have finished the whole 22 but I will have to just get over it. Now I must get going to a birthday party...

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Catching Up

I guess it has been awhile since my last post. I have been all about running but not about writing so here we go...

First off I ran the 25K which was a little warm to say the least. Luckily I had good company and it turned out to be the most fun I have had at a race. I had a slow time but not too bad for the conditions. I was glad to finish and still be smiling. After the race I did another 3.5 miles or so to get in my full milage for the day. Maybe next year will bring cooler weather.

Since the 25K I have been increasing my miles and have been around 70 miles per week. I think last week I was a little short on miles due to the rainy weather. I couldn't bring myself to run in the rain on Saturday. I actually woke up, got ready and made it halfway to the Kenyan Way long run but the temperature kept falling and the rain got harder so I went back to my warm bed. I completed my scheduled long run on Sunday under much more favorable circumstances. Monday I ran 8 miles easy around my neighborhood and Tuesday I ventured back to the parking garages for some hill work. I actually feel pretty good after the hill workouts now, let's just hope it will pay off on Allen Parkway in January. This weekend is another long run and then hopefully I will run Sunmart the following weekend. That's about all my running news for now. Oh, a quick note that I am now linked to the HARRA Homepage at Isn't that exciting?!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Easy Day

Today I met the Clear Lake group for an easy 12 miles. I ran to the Kroger which is approximately 2.5 miles from my house and then completed 7 with the group before returning back home. I figured out this morning on the way to the workout that I am up to 60 miles a week now. I have never run that kind of milage before so this is unknown territory. So far I feel good, the only thing that seems to be getting me down is the waking up at 4 am. I guess if I'm going to keep this up I need to get to bed earlier. Tomorrow I am attempting a 5 mile tempo run which should be interesting considering my butt hurts from the garages yesterday. Well now I must get to bed.

Have a great night!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

First Post & Parking Garages

This is a day of firsts for me. I have been an avid reader of several running blogs for the past year or so and have thought about starting my own from time to time. Today is a good as any to start so here I am. I am currently training for the Houston Marathon and hopefully a new PR for this distance. I have been training with several groups in the area including Bayou City Road Runners and Kenyan Way. Both are excellent groups and have really helped me stay on track toward my goal. Hopefully this blog will also keep me accountable and help me get out the door when I would rather turn off the alarm clock. So now the fun begins...

Today was my first hill workout in at least 2 months. I met the Bayou City group at the park to run parking garages. My alarm failed to go off this morning so I had exactly 5 minutes to dress and be on my way. What a great way to start the day. So for better or worse I made it to the 0 marker at the park and we were off to the garages. The worse is what I got for todays workout. I definately was not expecting this to be as difficult as it turned out to be. This was a good kick in the butt for meand I got in 10 miles for the day. I suppose I will have to put this in my weekly rotation.

Have a great night!