Wednesday, September 27, 2006

The excitement builds

I have mentioned in the past how this training is far better and more satisfying than the previous marathon training. ya know, when i asked my doctor if i was okay to train for a marathon, aside from saying yes, he said it usually takes about 6-8 weeks to break through the pain of running. and i never "broke through" last time. i went the whole 4 months in pain. this time around, i have experienced minimal pain. so for me, it's taken a marathon to break through the pain of becoming runner. that itself is enough to discourage anyone from taking up the hobby.

the last few weeks i had been on a high (feeling great about the marathon), then last sunday, having had to run a third time by my self for the long runs, my motivational tank finally ran out and instead of running a half marathon distance, i only ran about 7. and i was discouraged. luckily, it took only running one time with my partner, yesterday morning to get me back on track and excited. we ran 8 YASSO 800's (8 X 800 meters = 4 miles). we took a two minute break after each 800. my professor told me i needed to be running each 800 in 4 min 35 secs as part of my 10:30 mile marathon goal. well i ran every one at an even faster pace. not cause i was trying to but because, again, it just felt comfortable. i didn't get tired until the 7th run, but on the 8th and final run we decided to push it as much as we could. we knocked about MINUTE off the time which equates to about a 7 minute 20 sec mile (if we ran a whole mile). i didn't even run a mile that fast in January for class, let alone after 3 previous 8 minute miles.

now, i couldn't have kept that pace for another half mile but it was such a boot to run at that speed after having already run 3 1/2 miles. the previous 7 runs were at close to 8 minute mile pace.

once my professor reads this blog, i may get scolded because he put much effort into essentially mapping out my training program (speed wise) and the last thing he said was, "never" run faster than 8 minute miles.....oops. Sorry Dr. P.

The marathon is FAST approaching. this weekend is a 3 hour run, then next week is the last long run... the dreaded Twenty-Miler!!!!! but i'm excited! i may feel differently at the end of that run, but at least i'll have two weeks of relative rest (easy running) before Chicago to re-coop!

Saturday, September 23, 2006


Well, as you can guess from the title, we have found out what Josie's break-out condition is. She has "Guttate Psoriasis". it is the kind of psoriasis you can get after a bout of strep throat.

If you'll recall, Josie contracted strep the week before her back surgery. she wasn't completely finished with her antibiotics before surgery. then she contracted strep two more times in the following 4 weeks. And some of the things believed to contribute to psoriasis is emotional stress (of the pending surgery), injury to skin (which is why her psoriasis is concentrated around her incision spots), reaction to to certain drugs, and then some types of infections (ie. the strep).

she has three creams/ointments we have to put on her body every night and she has an antiobiotic she takes daily. the doc thinks it should be pretty cleared up in a month. hope so! we've noticed a difference just in the last two days. psoriasis is a life long problem - but hopefully josie's will remain in remission as long as she doesn't get strep again. if this continues to be a problem, or doesn't clear up, etc, they may look at taking her tonsils out.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Upcoming events

This Sunday i leave for Rhode Island. My "job" asked me if i wanted to attend a training there... just me, wow! i'll fly out of KCI Sunday at 11:30AM and return Wednesday evening around 4:30. i really enjoy flying, but i'm quite nervous about having to switch flights, aspecially being by myself in a HUGE airport in another state (Chicago). Then there is the matter of being "alone" in another state for several days... no familiar faces at all. i tend to be a loner, but i will still feel quite lonely there. please pray for safe travel to and from, no problems with flights, hotels, you name it. pray for Tracy as she will be the sole caretaker of the kids that whole time too. i know that will be stressful on her. i will be taking the laptop with me i think (I just bought josie a new software game at her bookfair tonight, so i may not be able to!)

As for Josie, we are taking her to see a dermatologist on Wednesday (well, Tracy will, before she picks me up) at CMH. she has develped quite a rash of some sort on her back ever since the last surgery. we thinks its some form of allergic reaction to the tape or something, but nothing we've tried (over the counter and prescription) has worked to clear it up. the rash itself may not be a huge concern but if it's not cleared up, they will NOT operate on her since the breakout is all around the incision sites.... and THAT will be a problem. so please pray that an answer will be found next Wednesday and it can be cleared up before her next surgery in February.

Running Solo

My running partner came down sick last week so i had to run 16 miles on my own!! Earlier this spring i would not have even contemplated it. This time around, considering how well, mentally, i've been feeling about running and the recent successful runs... i was not petrified by it. actually, i almost welcomed the challenge. that would be a first for me - running 16 miles alone.

Well, the weather had different ideas and it was projected to rain/storm off and on all weekend. i mapped out an 8 mile out and back from my house which is just short of a mile from 75 hiway. i brought a headset to boost my morale and get my mind off running. but i didn't turn it on the first two miles cause it was pitch black still at 6am in the country. i loosened up by mile five and the tunes were a blessing!! before i knew it i was almost at mile 8! it remained cloudy and occasionally thundered. just as i neared the turn around, my wife pulls up beside me in the car. aparently she was awakened by the thunder and lightening, and rain. it was working it's way in my direction. i don't mind the rain at all, but i suppose it's not wise to run in lightning with an electrical device strapped to your arm and head.... so i took the ride. no more than we turned around when the rain started. it would pour and stop, pour and stop all the way back.

i got home and decided to run the remaining 8 miles on the treadmill. a mile and a half into it the power flickered and the treadmill stopped (good thing i wasn't running fast). at 3 miles my left foot began to hurt - felt like a blister forming so i decided to stop. oh, ya, the day before i bought new running shoes and this was the first day i wore them. turns out i did get a blister, but very small.

my partner intends to run the 16 miles this coming Saturday which would normally be a 10 mile run - per our schedule, so since i only ran 11 this time, i'll go ahead and run 16 again with him. i am confident i could have run the whole 16 on my own, all alone, which is an incredible psychological boost for me!!!! i am getting more an more excited about the marathon!!!! the guy that sold me my shoes in KC had nothing but awesome things to say about the Chicago marathon so i am even MORE psyched! i am getting more and more confident that i will "easily" make my 10:30 mile goal and finish this marathon near 4 1/2 hours! remember my first one was almost 5 hours 40 minutes!

i realize if i go out and run a marathon like that in October it will be even harder to "retire" from the running scene, but training for a marathon is such a time commitment and money commitment... and family needs to come first.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

What A Quandary!

My mind is telling me one thing, but my body is telling me another. And from a "fitness" standpoint, it's good. I am running better than i expected. But here's the situation:

I am training to run a 10:30/mile marathon - which would actually be close to a 4 and a half hour marathon; which is over an hour faster than my first one. i will be happy to run 11 and a half minute miles which would put me closer to 5 hours. that's my primary goal - finish in 5 hours. my secondary goal would be to run 10:30's.

And to accomplish this goal i'm supposed to be running some of the training at marathon pace (10:30), some slower and some faster.

The problem i am facing, which i've posted before about is that i am finding it very difficult to run as slow as i need to at times. what should be a faster pace actually seems "comfortable" and the slower pace is feeling way too slow. The positive side is that is showing how i've "improved". but the down side is that it could lead to over training and leaving me with little come race day.

Today, the workout was 5 X 1 mile runs. 1. warmup 2. conversational pace 3. marathon pace 4. threshold (fast as you can for maximum heartrate-180's bpm for me) 5. cool down. well, conversational pace ended up being marathon pace and the threshhold mile i ran in approximately 8 minutes 10 seconds. then the cool down mile ended up being at marathon pace.

But my threshold mile i could have run faster. during my marathon training class we did a timed mile to reach threshold. i ran it in 7 minutes 50 seconds. and i was definitely at my limit. i thought i was going to pass out. yet today i had already run 3 miles and then ran my threshold mile just 15 seconds slower than in class... and i felt great. i was breathing heavy but I could have pushed myself faster to reach a true threshold. so cardiovascularly, i have greatly improved since last January.

so i think i'm going to keep training the way i am - running what feels comfortable. i will try to run slower when i need to but i'm going to follow what my body is telling me. and with the motivation of 40,000 runners and over a million spectators.... i may in fact pull off a 4 and a half hour marathon..... or better! but we'll see.

The sure fire marathon killer is starting out too fast and not having anything left to finish. this Saturday is the 16 mile run and then we still have the 20 mile run. those two runs will tell me a great deal about my pace and whether it can hold out for 26 miles.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

smooth sailing today

Bob and I ran 9 miles before church this AM. i seem to be consistently inconsistent. i'll have a great long run followed by a bad one, etc.. last week i really blew it on the 12 mile run. This morning 9 miles was a breeze!!!!

for those in Topeka, we ran down Macvicar from 17 to 21st, 21st to Gage, Gage to 29th, 29th to Wanamaker, Wanamaker to 21st, 21st to Macvicar and Macvicar to 17th.

Bob said we were running at a 10 minute pace average. according to the stopwatch our average time was 11:19, which is just 11 seconds off (faster) where i needed to be. but when you factor in waiting for a few stop lights, etc, we actually did run it in the 10's. which is significantly FASTER than i should have been running it. but i am really struggling to run it as slow as i need to. this pace felt great to me - but, i'm sure that pace won't feel good come mile 13 when i still have another half marathon to run!

my left ankle has been hurting again. i started to feel a little bit of something a couple weeks ago, but then last Tuesday i ran some ALL OUT splits that didn't help at all. and it's getting alittle stiff; no swelling but stiff. i'll have to keep a watch on that. my knees have also begun to hurt a little bit during the last couple long runs.

Taylor and Josie get their shots on Tuesday to keep their immunizations up to date, yeah! Cami should be starting dance again sometime soon. Taylor weel into his football season. they won their first game. they have a game this Wednesday night. he plays an offensive lineman (offensive guard). that's it for now, gotta watch a movie with the kids.