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Sunday, March 30, 2008

32 minutes

I ran an easy 32 minutes on Sunday morning. Cool and sunny. Took Advil to head off the achy shin. It went away during the run and didn't come back. Relatively uneventful run. The track was close to empty except for the usual Asians. I picked up the pace coming back and actually felt less lethargic and sluggish. As i came back, I glanced at a band of glass office windows and saw that a 60 plus looking runner was shadowing me.

I read this on the web about a world class triathlete who runs no more than 3-4 days a week. The rest is swimming and cycling.

Rene told me that his 'secret' is to always do some 'fast running' every time he goes for a run. So if he does a long run, he will always finish with strides, so that his body does not forget how to run fast.

I really relate to the last part. I have forgotten how to run fast.

30 minutes

I finally did a continuous run of about 30 minutes Saturday morning. Speed was not the thing. It was just get through it and get over to Carrows for breakfast with the club afterwards. The next morning I noticed that my left upper shin was achy. Nothing bad but probably one of those we ain't use to this yet type of messages.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Past The Curve

If you take a month off eventually you are going to feel it coming back. Today I felt it. I walked and ran for about an hour this morning kicking the run portion up to 24 minutes. I ran 14 minutes, took a short walking break and ran another ten minutes. I really felt knackered after the 14. The good news was that I did 24 minutes and that once again there was no calf pain (he said cautiously).

I did run partly on the DeAnza track watching while the big blond women (BBW's) ran up and down the bleacher steps and did various other exercises. These gals are really trying to get into shape but they both need to lose about 30-40 pounds. Blond hair won't do it alone. I try not to fantasize about them..wink..wink! They, like me, are past the curve where one can ever go back. You just try to be better than you were last week or last month. If you are really lucky you might actually be better than you were last year.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

21 minutes and counting

In the spirit of things, I boosted my running up to 21 minutes jogging up and down the trail to the dam and then finished off on the track. It was good to see that I could handle some uphill. I was out for about an hour total with most of the running packed in the early section. It was sunny but windy heading up trail. I kept my gloves on.

I felt like I could have kept going, that's how good I felt. It was that type of feeling good where you start making plans, something I really don't want to do right now. Oh, I will go right on up to 40 mpw and see how that goes.

I keep remembering that this injury can come back in a tug so I plan to keep on building but at a slow rate of climb. I did tape my calf again. Still using masking tape. I have not ordered the real stuff yet. I am going on the cheap and will see how it goes.

Jake was in recovery mode having run hard for the prior 3 days. I ran a bit with him but he kept breaking into walks wisely choosing to recover rather than thrash himself.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

18 Minutes of Running

I got out relatively early walking a mile before launching into my run. I covered 9 minutes without stopping. walked a bit and did another 9 minutes for 18 minutes total. I put masking tape across my calf. Two strips on the area that had bothered me. I don't know if it helped or not but I ran with absolutely no pain or even shadow pain. Nada. Legs felt good. The total workout with run and walk was about 40 minutes.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

15 Minutes and Shadow Pain

On a ragingly quiet spring morning (Easter by the way,) I went out for an hour's walk throwing in 15 minutes of low quality running. Once again, no pain. Sometimes I think I feel shadow pain, which really isn't pain at all but this sort of sense that something is coming...But then it doesn't. It was nice to get out and walk. I did the first mile with Amber, our 12.5 year old Golden who acts like she is 2.5. I dropped back at the house and went on by myself. Good just to move but I feel a bit large and sluggish. Like an old wooden ship that needs to be careened and have the crap scrapped off my hull.

I sent off a message to Dwight, he of the 100 mile weeks, on Kinesio Taping for my calf. He hasn't answered yet. He may be traveling or in email ROM (Read Only Mode) which he often falls into when he is off his meds. One never really knows. Anyway, I found some information about this type of taping on the web (picture at top) but I am going to have to go buy some of the specially designed Kinesio tape. My guess is that masking or duct tape probably isn't the best.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Another 30 minute walk

I high tailed over to WVC this morning to walk on the track. Unfortunately (for me) there was a big high school meet going on so I had to stick to walking around the campus trying as much as possible to stay with flat surfaces. I did throw in some runs totaling up to 10 minutes. No pain. NO discomfort.

Vigorously massage my calf after the workout.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

30 minute walk

A quiet 30 minute morning walk over in Los Gatos. I parked by Forbes Mill and walked to the high school track and then did about 8 minutes of running interspersed with walking breaks. Not much but it was all pain free and no tightness afterwards. Jake and I hooked up and went and had breakfast.

I hope to increase the running portions gradually over the next weeks. I am treating the walking and running as medicinal according to John Parker. Walk and run until there is the distance or time is reached or until there is pain and then stop. Keep increasing the running portions until I am back to normal.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

One hour walk and then some

I walked today for about an hour throwing in 5 or 6 very slow 100-200 meter test jogs along the way. My calf held up. No pain and no tightness. I did feel the calf several times during the walk. A few mild zingers* that I wouldn't have noticed if it weren't for the recent problems. I know I am not over this thing but I may be on the way to recovery.

* Zinger: A slight mild tightness that quickly passes.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

I am resolved not to run

More than two weeks in and I am still resolved not to run for at least 6-8 weeks.

My legs and body can use the rest and I hope this will go a long way to helping my left leg knee and calf problems. I thought I would walk and may still but I am reminded of the fact that complete rest is just that. Complete rest.

OK, now and then I will trot on and off for around for 1-2 minutes as a test but otherwise I am restricting calories laying off the fast ball.

Friday, March 07, 2008

All Quiet

Not much to report since I have not been running. Tomorrow will be two weeks. I don't have even a hint of any calf pain and my knee feels OK too. I will begin to downsize the heel lifts and walk to burn some calories (or so I hope). I admit that work has been busy so not running has actually been good. It gives me plenty of time to overstress myself for the good of my clients. Last night, my wife asked me if I was stressed. I told her I was but that it went with the territory. I tend to have three gears.

1. Engaged and involved which means stressed.

2. Neutral which means I really don't care even though I try to do good work. Not very stressed.

3. Not engaged at all as in not in that world. For me that would be stepping away from this type of work which it doesn't seem I am ready to do. But I am not that far away. No stress. At least not from that world.

What I have found is that having money doesn't really change things. It's nice because it gives you options (like walking away from a client if it isn't working out). But as long as you are in the game, it feels much the same.

Franklin said a fool and his money are soon parted. I would say that a fool who has money and doesn't use it to change their life is still a fool unless, of course, the fool enjoys what they are fooling around at.

Monday, March 03, 2008

No Cross Country For Old Men

In deference to Cormac McCarthy, after reading his book that has been made in an Academy Award winning movie, I realized that it struck a chord. In the book the veteran sheriff realizes that his time has come. Time to get out of being a sheriff.

This is year 40. Forty years of running. Maybe one hundred thousand miles on my legs. I am not sure but it's more than ninety for sure and maybe more than one hundred if I throw in all the half hour runs I did around the soccer field before practice back in college. There were hundreds of those runs. But I count it from 1968 because that is the year I first ran just for runnings sake. I wasn't getting in shape for soccer. I was just running to burn some calories and because I enjoyed the way it felt. Whatever that joy was I will never fell that way again no matter how much longer I run. One hundred thousand mile legs just don't bend the way younger legs do. Not now, not ever.

I just didn't get it until now.

It wasn't all about racing. That was 23 years of it the rest was about just getting out the door and hurling myself on to the tracks, trails and sidewalks of wherever I happened to be at the time. I guess my running today looks more like it did back in the beginning. Intermittent and unfocused.

I am injured right now. Only my second real injury in 40 years. My achilles almost snapped back in 1985. That cost me a month but in '85 I was only 40. Seemed old back then. Seems young now. I recovered fast at 40. Terrell Owens fast. Not so fast now. I expect to out of the saddle for 6-8 weeks. Maybe I am being too careful or maybe I just don't miss running that much. Could be either. I am not sure yet.

I have become what I always hated in runners. The one who did the stupid thing that put them out of action. The only problem is that I am not so sure I know exactly what I did wrong. Shoes? Maybe. I did change my shoes. Went to a bigger size. Half a size up. Maybe it screwed up my stability. Not sure. I do pronate but then everyone pronates. I went to high too fast. Icarus-like. Several months ago I was running mostly flat-land course. Oh there were some rollers in there but mostly I was at sea level. The I went up into the hills above the dam and ran high. 2500 feet high. Steep too in places.

When the pain came it came slowly as an ache in my calf. Nothing big but I thought I could outrun it the way I always did. A thousand injuries and I had outrun them all. Well, at least excluding 1985. If there was way to keep going I knew it. The magic of heel lifts and taping and icing and Advilling. I knew them all. But it turns out that I didn't know this one. This one came on and hung around and I couldn't shake it. So last Saturday I finally slid off the saddle and said enough.

Had been thinking of returning to racing next fall. Cross country has always been my strong point. Someone could beat me by a minute at 10K on the flats and I would be on their shoulder if the course went off road. A body is built for something and that is what I was built for. But this year, unless I can come back, and I am in no hurry, There will no cross country for this old man.