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Everything posted by Dave

  1. Dave

    RR: Rehoboth Seashore Pikermi

    I've been feeling decidedly media unsocial lately, to the extent that I had thought about not even writing this RR. I guess along with all the other skills I've never developed, I'll never develop the real hermit skills I need to disappear from the Loop or Loopville completely. I'm also pretty much a slave to tradition, and I've been writing about my running long enough now that a race feels incomplete without reliving it here. Not feeling the joy, though, so you aren't likely to find anything especially humorous. But it was a race and I ran it and I'm going to write about it, so grab a cup and settle in for whatever time you can stomach. After the year that has been 2018 (and I do plan - unenthusiastically perhaps - on recapping this whole disaster of the last 365 days), I wasn't on the fence about returning to the Delaware beaches for the second year in a row. My decision was made late because I wasn't sure about my training, given the lingering pain from Louie's meniscus tear and the surgical repair. Last year it was a foot problem after San Francisco that had me sneaking in to the marathon in Rehoboth. HotPinkSneakers had kept that under wraps until I got there, hoping to repeat the fun of 2012 in the Twin Cities. This time that seemed too obvious. But, after the slowest and most discouraging build up of my life, by late October I finally felt like maybe I had a half marathon in the old legs. I wanted a good double digit run to be sure, and that hadn't happened yet. Of course I also needed Mrs. Dave's approval of the finances. The house all the Loopsters were staying at was full, so I needed a place to stay off the street. I looked at flying Spirit to Baltimore like last year, then discovered that I had some miles in my Delta account that would let me go DTW to DCA for free. Airbnb had a house at a price not much more than the local hotels. This sort of came together quickly one Sunday evening, and I decided that if all three - fitness, flight, nest - were still available by the end of the week, I was going. I bumped into a neighbor who also runs during the week who told me this was a no brainer. Usually, that's the level of brains I use for decision-making, but I still waited for the weekend. Mostly worried about the knee. Delta thanked me for being a frequent flyer. I don't consider myself a frequent flyer, although I've done a bunch more in the last two years than ever. Good flight, though, and I was traveling light, with just a backpack. There were Loopsters at the airport - HPS, zamgirl5, gingersnapMKE - and it was a pretty short wait for RunEatRalph, who was making a long road trip from his place in VA, and had graciously volunteered to let a few of us pile into his wheels. The 2-1/2 hour drive from Reagan to the coast went pretty quickly. That Gingersnap can really talk. I can't, usually, but I said a couple of things that might have contributed. We stopped at a KFC for chicken tenders (Ralph and I were starving). We stopped in some other place for a few groceries for dinner. Once we got to Rehoboth, the rest of Friday was hanging out a little at the Dogfish Head bar, getting settled in the Airbnb with runningplaces9919, then making and eating dinner, and I mostly listened to the bigger and bigger group of Loopsters laughed and joked and I wondered if I was getting too old for this sort of gathering. But the food was excellent. RP and I called it early and drove the mile to our house. We'd tried a practice run to the Loopster house to see what made sense for race morning - drive or walk. The main bridge was closed, so we couldn't scout the route very well and decided that a drive and park was the safest bet. The little house was perfect for two guys with no intentions to party. Had trouble sleeping Friday night. Not normally a problem for me, but I was all nerves about the race and the knee and being with Loopsters after a long time. But eventually I dropped off and got a decent night's sleep. We were both up at 5:00. We didn't have the best parking, but it was within reasonable walking distance from the Loop house and the finish line. We gathered with the Loopsters and then walked to the starting line, just a few minutes before the start. Good thing, too, because it was cold. Just under 30o, which is a tough spot. Just on the border of whether to go with multiple layers. In the end, I had double shirts, shorts, double gloves and my trusty old Twin Cities headband. That turned out to be the perfect choice. I was cool most of the morning but never freezing, and never over heated. Plan for the day: My A goal was 1:45, or 8:00 pace. I was a little scared of that because I hadn't had a decent tempo run and about half of my long intervals were weak on the back end. But I'd done 6 x 800s on Wednesday at almost 3:30, so I thought I'd give it a go. I basically cut my 2014 Marshall plan in half. First 5K easy (8:30, 8:15, 8:15), then a bunch of 8:00's, and hope to have a little left to push for the final 5K. No hills because Rehoboth, so all I had to do was get into a rhythm and it would be great. The plan almost worked. Mile 1 was OK, at 8:38. I'd lined up behind the 3:40 pace group, forgetting that my slower start should have people passing me early. The first half mile I was seeing sub-8, so I dropped off some, even though I was a little in the way. Etiquette fail. But there were plenty of others slower than me and no one was really blazing the first mile weave, so I didn't feel too bad. Mile 2 was 8:18. Not perfect, but pretty close and no danger signs from the knee or from the ankle, which has been sort of bothering me the last couple of weeks. I haven't mentioned it, hoping it'll go away of course. The I get to mile 3 with a 8:15. No issues. Didn't feel all wonderful or anything, but that kept me from trying to go faster, which was smart. Not that I'm usually smart. I was keeping y eyes open for Loopsters on the course, and saw ocrunnergirl after the turnaround. Just behind of me was a couple of guys, and one of them was a loud-talker. I could tell you all about their jobs and their wives and a bunch of other things except it would not doubt be as excruciating for you to read as it was for me to listen to. Sadly, they were very nearly at my pace and I knew I didn't have it in me to push any more. A woman had something go wrong with her watch about then, and Loud-talker made it his mission to settler her down and mansplain how she'd be OK and she shouldn't let it ruin her race and that everyone else had a watch if she needed to ask where her pace was. She apparently did have it in her because she took off and got as far away as quickly as she could. I hope she finished well. Mile 4 - 8:08. This is where I figured that discretion would be the better part of valor and not panic about losing those 8 seconds. My effort felt about right. Pushing would only come back to haunt me later. And I hadn't had a sustained effort double digit run in over a year, so I had no confidence I could run down 8-10 seconds per mile for nine more miles. Head down and take it one mile at a time. That next mile was 8:03. I never felt great the whole morning, btw. The race was a grinder and I just hung in as best I could. Running that 8:03 should have given me a boost, but it barely registered. Back through downtown and past the finish area I started looking for Loopsters again. Corc-o-rama and PearlGirl were spectating and I expected them around there, but missed them I guess. Then as I approached the bridge (taking the sidewalk to avoid the open grating that everyone hates so much), I spied aschmid and slow_running ahead of me. I was gaining on them, but since I wasn't hitting my 8:00s I hadn't planned on seeing them until a little later if at all. I slowed a little to stay with them for a little, but lost them when we turned onto the road that went towards the gravel path The road was open and they had the runners restricted to the bike lane which was barely wide enough for two runners. I went in front and they dropped off. I followed two women running side by side all the way to the path. I didn't have the energy to try swinging out around them, and that would have put me outside the cones unless I put on a good surge which I wasn't prepared to do anyway. Anyway, with all that, Mile 6 was 7:54. Maybe I'd get a second wind and be able to push that last 5K after all. I haven't really had a chance to run with fuel this year, so I wasn't 100% confident about the Hammer Gel I'd brought with me. Normally I down one half way through a pikermi. The other thing I wasn't sure about was how easy it would be to get to it. The latest version of my C9 shorts don't have the normal pocket at the waist. There's a zippered one in the back. With the sand on the path making my footing sort of dicey, and my energy starting to flag a little, I lost 30 seconds for mile 7. 8:28. But, after fueling up I just needed to wait for a few minutes to feel rejuvenated, right? Nope. Instead, my stomach decided to treat my heretofore trusty Hammer Gel like a foreign invader. It also happened that I was now behind Loud-talker and his buddy again. Fortunately, they were working harder and not talking as much, but it worried me some. I worried more about getting to the POP at mile 8. And it felt like I'd added ten pounds to each leg. Please get me to mile 8! 8:18. The POP is at about mile 8-1/2. There was no line! Just a quick stop for business and I'd be good as gold again. Again, nope. I watched the watch that (still) has yet to be named count and count and count, while I tried to make sure there wouldn't be another pit stop when I came back through at Mile 10. One minute. Two minutes. THREE MINUTES! And I was finally on the trail again. So much better. Mile 9 counted out at 10:59, so it would have been one of the best of the day without the stop. The three minute break probably helped my last four and a half miles, I guess. So I'll take that little victory. Somewhere after that I saw NCAthlete coming back the other way. She was working and looking better than I felt (she always looks better than me anyway). Some people love trails. I don't mind them if I'm not in a hurry. The little path through Ritter Park in Huntington is a Loop-Marshall favorite. Not mine. Nor is this part of Rehoboth. Last year I stopped more times than I can tell you to shake rocks out of my shoes. This time I avoided that somehow (dumb luck), but the top layer was just sandy enough that the footing was a few degrees away from slippery. Added stress I didn't need. I couldn't wait to get off that trail. I saw aschmid as I approached the turnaround. She and Slow_Running had of course passed me while I was in the POP. I called out but she didn't look very happy. Found out later she'd also stopped at the POP, and was on her way to make a second visit. Never did see SR. Mile 10 was 8:11. Not great again, but now I only had a 5K to go. Like I'd been afraid, there wasn't much more I could put into my pace, and I mostly hoped I wouldn't slow down a ton, although that's exactly what I wanted to do. Grind. Mile 11 - 8:16. These were all supposed to be sub-8:00. Not this day. But I compared it to how it felt, which was more like 9:15, and also reminded myself that most of this year I hadn't been able to run at all. Didn't make me go any faster on that stoopid sandy path, but it kept my mind positive. I was actually running a race again, despite the fact that I really, really wanted to walk for 10-30 seconds. And the trail was ending, which was the best news of all. HoosierJill and SLCAthena were coming onto the trail, having way more fun than I was. My legs were feeling pretty dead, though, even after getting back on the road. 8:11. On the grates going back over the bridge, which didn't suck nearly as bad as the trail. I was actually passing a few people along here, too. My brain was off and I was mostly making sure I stayed on the route. Would have been bad to get lost. It was at Mile 13 (7:46) that I finally saw Corc and Pearl. They gave me a cheer and I kept up my not-death march. I've felt way worse in races, so this was fine. Not comfortable, but pretty good all things considered. Final .1 (.19 per Garmin) @ 6:56. Numbers. Official time 1:50:46 (8:27) 3 mile split - 25:26 (8:25) 9 mile split - 1:17:28 (8:36) Overall position - 337/1651 Men - 220/562 M 55-59 - 22/82 (just for fun, I would have been 6th in my next year's new AG) Two miles (6 & 13) @ sub-8:00 Slowest miles - 1 (8:38 - planned) and 9 (8:28 - fumbling with Hammer Gel) (not counting the 10:59 Mile 9, of which 3 were spent stationary) So, let me consider. First time training specifically for a half marathon. Ran zero miles for much of the year. Training was more or less spotty even after getting through the end of summer. Still getting older. 1:50 was my B-goal, so I can check that off. I'll also give myself an A for effort. Maybe it's just from not racing in so long, but I was never comfortable after the first three miles. Now for an easy winter. I'll run if I'm not too busy, it isn't too cold and the sidewalks are mostly clear. I can plan a late spring marathon (May?). Maybe something early in the fall and Disney World in January, provided I stay healthy. That's the only bucket race I have left and I'd like to get it done sooner rather than later. How's this for a race face?
  2. Dave

    Rehoboth Runparty #6!

    Last year was fun enough, I guess, but I was out there SO LONG!
  3. Dave

    Rehoboth Runparty #6!

    Seeing you at least once is a highlight of my year. Great pics from the race. Most of mine are horribly out of focus.
  4. Dave

    RR: Rehoboth Seashore Pikermi

    You know I don't do well against peer pressure.
  5. Dave

    RR: Rehoboth Seashore Pikermi

    Tempting - I still need NJ, after all. You'll plenty cool, Gonzo. Your writing is arguably (not that there's ever argument on the Loop) the best out there right now.
  6. Dave

    RR: Rehoboth Seashore Pikermi

    Definitely TBD. I've thought about Vermont City, which was my target for last spring before I started the whole knee thing.
  7. Dave

    CIM 2018 RR

    Monster redemption from #1. Good training and a well executed pacing strategy. There's a race you can be proud of. Although, of course now you're probably thinking about something that starts with a "3", amiright?
  8. Dave


    I'll spell it how I want. November 20 - 4 easy November 21 - 2 x 2400. Quality runs have been all over the place this time. Rust from the injury maybe. Good runs always seem to be followed by bad ones. Tempo from Monday was especially hard, so I had low expectations for this one. Pleasantly surprised with it, though. 6:58 and 7:09. November 22 - Mrs. Dave decided we were going to Seattle for Thanksgiving. I needed to meet Big Mac's latest (and most probably the last) beau. Traveling on Turkey day is surprisingly affordable as it turns out. And the later you can wait to book, the more affordable it becomes. Anyway, travel and food on Thursday, so no run. November 23 - Ran down to the beach from the in-laws' house. 8 miles. 4 down and 4 back up. Took it easy by choice and necessity. Cool and windy, a few sprinkles because Seattle. Stopped at the beach for a couple of minutes to watch some kiteboarders. Everyone needs a hobby, I guess. November 24 - Schedule had ten miles, and twelve next week. Decided to switch that and put the longer one a week farther out from race day. Not sure it mattered a ton, but felt like I was making an informed, intelligent, fact-based decision. Not used to that. South on the Inter-urban trail for 6 and back. Not nearly as steep as Friday, but the same sort of drop on the front half and climb on the return. A slow, grinder kind of run. Cut down the old dead cheery tree in front of the in-laws' house. It had grown over the years and since it didn't involve any power lines, the city wasn't interested in it. It had raised the cul-de-sac's feed from Comcast about 4 feet, though. A good wind storm probably would have sent it down onto someone's car or the neighbor's boat. November 26 - Rained pretty hard all day, and Mrs. Dave had a long list of things to do before we returned to Detroit. No run. In keeping with the casual 2018 training approach, I didn't mention it while we were doing all the other stuff. November 27 - Time for another ride on the struggle bus. Supposed to be 8 miles with 6 at tempo. Shooting for 8 minute miles. Miles 1-3 were 8:01, 8:08, and 7:46. So much up and down. It was also too warm, at 54o. Wore gloves and a LS - both were mistakes. Had to break after those first three, but that didn't help as much as I'd hoped. 8:49, 8:41, 8:53 for 4-6. At least the effort was there. November 28 - Travel day. Going east is always worse with the added three hours from Pacific time. The plane had to return to the gate because they couldn't get the #1 engine started. Fortunately they were able to get it going and we didn't have to change planes. It was after 6pm when we finally got home, so the idea of a run wasn't at all palatable. November 29 - Moved intervals to Thursday. 4 x 1600 at whatever I could do. Downloaded an old workout from GarminConnect, which turned out to be the wrong one, so had to guess a little with the laps for the third and fourth. 7:27, 7:42, 7:31, 7:34. Not as good as the 2400s from last week, but OK. November 30 - Six slow ones. Felt sort of tired. Seems like I've heard that story before, too. It was a fair bit colder than I thought, too. Brr. That made 145 miles for November. Most this year. Puts me at 465 YTD. I'll get to 500 by New Year's. First time since 2010 I haven't broken 1,000 miles. December 1 - Ten miles. Heard there was a new church family moving in. Their house was exactly five miles from home, so I ran there, helped unload the truck and ran back. Tired coming back. Seeing a pattern. Feel like a wimp, tapering for a half, but three months ago I wasn't running at all. Perspective. I need to do better at managing my expectations.
  9. Dave


    That's what I figure.😎
  10. Dave

    350 Days Later – Get me on the Court and I’m Trouble…

    I retired from b-ball at 45 or so, when the injuries (none very serious) became regular enough that it messed with my running. There was never a long enough healthy period for marathon training. Priorities - running was mine, partly because I was always better at that than the other. You can pick your own and I won't judge you. I still miss the other sports sometimes, but life is all about trade-offs.
  11. Dave

    Not the Race Report You're Looking For

    You do look pretty fast.
  12. Dave

    stopping for a bit..

    Damn those old knees!
  13. Dave

    Shamrock Marathon Training: Week 2

    Sweet long run. See you Friday.
  14. Dave

    A slow return?

    "Ruthlessly" is the only way to execute a plan. Best of luck.
  15. I've got some sweet memories of Marshall myself. Stellar debut, Michael. And, yes, people, he sweats more than any other human on earth.
  16. Dave

    More than a week.

    Race report and the upcoming holiday put me off my blooping schedule. That and another thing I'll get to in a minute. I'll start off by noting that the added four miles I was planning for after the race didn't happen. Mrs. Dave had a few things she wanted done and by the time I got home from the race it seemed better to get busy with those than make her wait another hour. I did run hard, so I guess it was a fair trade for ten easy miles. Then there was last week. To sum up, it was 38 miles. Returning again to the theme of 2018, that's the most I've done in a single week since last December. I was pretty tired by the end of it. Running more miles makes a body more tired in my experience. But, it's what I like, so I'm willing to be tired. Monday: Tempo Time. Seven miles total. Tempo miles - 8:18, 8:03, 8:03, 7:54, 7:56. After the first 1-1/2 it was mostly a gentle down slope, which is my favorite. 41 degrees - also my favorite. Every day now I get to wear shorts I think it may be my last run of the winter without tights. Tuesday: Easy 4 and strength work (pretty sure I didn't skip this day - too long ago to remember for sure). Windy and cold. Wednesday: This is where the race and everything else caught up to me. 6 miles with 3 x 1600. In was in the zone I wanted, but it was really hard. 7:30, 7:35, 7:39. Normally the first repeat is the slowest, while I get a sense of how things are on a day. This time I was just more and more gassed. Really wanted to skip the last one. Thursday: Snowed lightly most of the day, leaving me a half inch of cold, wet, slush everywhere. Not a good running surface. Really slow, but that was what I needed anyway. Really slow. Four miles felt like four-ever. Ugh. Friday: Seven miles easy. Heart rate on the YTBNW went all weird in mile 6. At least I'm assuming it was the watch. Jumped from about 150, where it was for all of the run until that point, to 170 bpm from one step to the next. Stayed there for almost the entire mile, then dropped almost as suddenly back to 150. When I took my shoes off I noticed a bright white spot under the ball of my foot. Gum? No, it was the next layer of the outer sole. I've NEVER worn through that part of the tread before on a pair of shoes. Fortunately, last winter there was a sale at asics.com where I'd bought two pair of my Cumuluses for the price of one. Wore them around the house and on a few shopping stops that evening and they were good to go for Saturday's long run. Saturday: Another distance marker. Eleven miles. (insert repeat of 2018 theme here) Of course by then I was feeling even more worn down. Splits were kind of all over the place - 8:45-9:25. It was 41o again, but for some reason it didn't feel like shorts weather. One of those runs where you just keep your head down and put one foot in front of the other because there's no other way to get home. Started snowing lightly about half way in. Beautiful and peaceful. Tried to enjoy it as much as I could, considered how lousy I felt. We're in a spot where holidays can be a little strange. It's just the two of us most of the time, and the kids are far enough flung that it's not practical to expect them to all gather back at the old homestead. This year we're heading to Seattle, but wanted to see Connor. He has to work on Black Friday so we invited him and a few friends over Saturday for an early celebration, with turkey and all the other traditional eats. There was pie. I was hoping for a nap after that long run, but dinner pre-empted me. Long day. Long week. Monday: This was supposed to be a repeat of last week's seven with five tempo. I was tired before I even started. Ran an easier route but that didn't help much. 7:52, 7:56, 7:47, 8:01, 8:00. Now that I write down and look at the numbers, I guess it was pretty close. Sure felt harder, though, especially those last two. So I guess that was a good one after all. The real problem last week was my mental state. Found out I'd hurt someone's feelings. I try not to do that, but like everyone I have my days. I forget that the world is mostly made up of other people (do the math - me=1, other people=7.7 billion) and their ideas, plans, feelings, etc. are just as valid and important as mine. Part of it was projecting what I would want in a situation and assuming they would want the same thing. Part of it was just thinking selfishly. Neither of these events were very recent, so the hurt was compounded by the passage of time without an appropriate apology. Let me also be clear that this is not a plea for sympathy. I messed this up. I was the bad guy. Writing this just helps me process my mistake. Please don't leave any, "You're a good guy, Dave," comments. That's not what this if for. If you want to take something out of this, just remember that we need to be nicer to each other. Sometimes that takes just a little more thought, a little effort, maybe a little sacrifice. Making another's life a little better (or at least not making it worse) should be worth whatever trouble you go to do that.
  17. Dave

    2nd Annual Rick Austin Memorial 5K

    Wouldn't you know the first really, really cold day of the fall was the same day as this race. This used to be the annual fun run for the high school where the boys competed. I've made it a regular thing for me whenever it didn't interfere too much with a big race I might be training for. This year it only interfered a little bit and while Rehoboth will be fun, it's not a race I'm keying on at all. My schedule had eight miles for Saturday, so of course I could run a fast-ish 5K in the middle of it. Dropped in the night before for my shirt and bib. On the way out there was a guy I recognized. One of Connor's old running mates, heading in for his gear. There would be a few more of their class at the race. Rick Austin was their track and field coach. The race was renamed in his honor after he unexpectedly died last fall. He was my age. Makes you think. The 9:30 start gave me plenty of time to sleep in, wake up, eat and do a few other things before driving the 5 miles to the start. I could have run a few miles but I'm not really motivated right now. I supposed I should also admit that after Wednesday's intervals my left calf was slightly unhappy, so part of it was not wanting it to blow up before the 5K. Always better to blow up during a 5K, not before. It's a small race, too, which means I didn't have to show up early for parking or anything other than time for an easy mile to warm up. Where I am in training (and my latest comeback) right now, I expected (hoped?) to run just under 8 minute pace. If I could do that for the first two miles, then I'd see if there was anything in the tank for number 3. My warm up overlapped the national anthem, so I missed that. I might have felt badly about that if it hadn't also been 30 degrees. I was wearing tights, double shirts, double gloves, and a headband. My ears didn't used to get so cold. I used to have hair that covered them most of the time. The start was an air horn. There was a false start when the starter was testing it out. "No! Wait!" "OK, now." The course isn't designed to be a burner, the first turn is 90 degree right at about five yards past the starting line. I was about 3-4 rows back, although it wasn't packed at all. Lots of walkers and they were all in the back (halleluiah!). It's 30 or so yards to the street when we made another 90 degree right ... onto the sidewalk. This race will have to be reconfigured if they start to get a big turnout. The next half mile is on the sidewalk. I checked my pace as we headed past the American Legion building. 7:10! Not what I had in mind. My tempo run on Monday had been about 8:00, which is why I'd planned that pace for the day. 7:10 was way out there. In the past, I'd have figured this was my pace and then just tried to hang on as best I could. These days I'm so much wiser and conservative in my racing (NOT!), but I did pull back a little to what seemed more appropriate. Something I thought I could maintain for a couple of more miles. I looked ahead and thought I counted a dozen or so runners ahead of me. About what I figured, based on the competition in previous years. I decided top ten was my target for the day, but with 2-1/2 miles to go, there wasn't too much to base that on. But it's good to have a goal, right? Making the next turn put us on a nearly half mile section of road that was fortunately not too busy on a Saturday morning. There's no sidewalk on this road and they had us on the right side of it, with the traffic if there had been any. No real issues with it except the dusting of snow we had, on top of the leaves that were on the ground made for some slippery footing. I took advantage of the no traffic thing and ran in the car lane. I passed one guy a little younger than me I thought, and then one of the high school kids. I'll call him Big Hair because he had a huge mess of it. He was also a pretty loud strider, too, because I could hear him close behind me most of the race. Guess that helped keep me focused. Mile 1 came in at 7:24. Faster than I'd expected, but it felt about right so I tried to hold the pace there. They had a table with water set up shortly after that but it didn't look like anyone ahead of me had taken any. I'm always a little surprised with 5K water stops. Someone later said all the cups were iced over. Brr. This is a twisty sort of race course, through the neighborhood streets. 100% flat, which is nice for me anyway. No hills and only two days of speed work in my training so far. I could hear Big Hair behind me and the students watching the course were cheering for him, but his steps seemed to be farther back, so I didn't check. I was still feeling pretty strong, too. Mile 2 was 7:25. Usually the second mile in a 5K is the longest (seems like), but this time it was #3. I've done this race 3-4 times or more. You'd think I would know the course by now. Anyway, there was some zigging and zagging. I passed another guy - 30-ish AG - and felt that old familiar dead leg feeling. The legs wanted to slow down, but I made them wait ... as much as I could. At 2.75 miles there's another 90 left onto the school grounds. My sons' XC coach was there. He gave me a low five and told me I still had the Master's title. Before getting to the track for the final 300, there was a section of construction with soft dirt and then some grass behind the locker rooms. That piece turned out to be my slowest part. I was afraid the younger guys behind me would put on a kick that I wouldn't be able to match and I'd lose my spot. Ahead of me was the first female. I wasn't going to catch her. Mile 3 was 7:31. Pretty sure I lost those 5 seconds on the dirt and grass, so splits for the day were just about even. Tough to do in a 5K. Official finish time - 22:47.1. 11th place overall and first runner over 50. So there's an AG win. Normally I stick around this one for the awards, which take forever since they wait for all the walkers and then do 20-30 AGs, but Mrs. Dave had lots of plans for the afternoon, so I booked it home. Not a great day, but very satisfying for a few reasons. First, those solid, even splits. Faster than I thought I'd be. The AG win of course. The calf, which had been bugging me since Wednesday was 100% quiet. (it's been a worry off and on since then, so I'm trying to be careful now). And Louie, the aggravated knee, was a model joint. So, on to Rehoboth.
  18. Dave

    More than a week.

    Hoping I don't need any pre-race racy tape job this time.😉
  19. Dave

    Shamrock Marathon Training: Week 1

    Those are pretty muffins.
  20. Dave

    I ran a 5K!

    Don't suppose I'll get much benefit dropping from 600ft to sea level at Rehoboth. I've seen Erin's IG clips doing those pullups with the kid on her back. Impressive. And nice race.
  21. Dave

    Set aside

    Not quite so dark here, but the clouds - the clouds!
  22. Dave

    The Cross-Training Chronicles: October Recap

    As the anti-XT'er, I'm agog at these stats. Cats are so thoughtful, aren't they?
  23. Dave

    Big news!

    Not big like, "I got engaged!" That happened so long ago that engagement rings were made of charcoal. Don't expect another of those anyway. Not big like, "BQ!" I may get another one of those someday, although with the new qualifying times even my new AG is going to take some work. No, that's not it. Not even big like, "I put $1 in the vending machine and got TWO Snickers bars!" A few weeks ago I noticed this little pimple thing on my gums above tooth #8 (that's the front right one, if you aren't up on your dental terms). Some discoloration around and above that tooth, too. I've seen this before, so I knew what it was. I smacked my mouth on the edge of a school desk in the 8th grade and chipped it. Over the years, it's needed a crown, a root canal, a replacement crown and what they call an apicoectomy (a nasty procedure where the endodontist digs into the gum above the tooth and cuts out a piece of the top where an infection has developed. That little pimple and discoloration meant that there was another infection. A round of antibiotics failed to do the trick, so I was up for another apicoectomy. Not my favorite thing. It took about an hour last Tuesday, and they encouraged me to take the day off work and sit around with ice on it. Bonus of this was that my client had the day off as a holiday for the election, but my employer did not. There was some boring training planned for most of the consultants, which I'd already attended and wasn't interested in another round. I'd originally planned a vacation day, but now I could use a legit sick day and save my vacation for trips and races. It also meant no running or exercise on Tuesday and since Tuesday is a strength day, it meant no squats or lunges or the rest of that silly stuff. Double win! I rarely get a day of total rest. I finished the latest Jack Reacher, watched a couple of movies, took a nap. Pretty glorious. I also voted, although I bucked the trend of facebook posting the event. (In case anyone was wondering.) Wednesday, I'm sitting at my desk talking to someone. I go to shift my leg, as part of the habit I've developed to help my knee not hurt like crazy when I get up to walk after sitting for more than 10 minutes and notice something so, so very strange. It doesn't hurt. My knee doesn't hurt. At all. There's no pain in my knee. Zero. None. Absolutely nothing. Wait. What? How? Crazy, right? This lasted the whole day. When I get home, I know I have intervals planned for the second time since before Rehoboth last year. A bunch of 400s, although as usual I can't exactly remember how many. I'd been sort of worried about them because of Louie, of course. Now I'm not so worried. I'm afraid to be excited because injuries don't just go away. Anyway, I was so flustered I didn't bother taking time to program the workout and load it to TWYTBN (The Watch Yet To Be Named). With Hal, I could program it directly on my wrist - a real backward step with the newer generation if you asked me. I just started running the 1.75 miles to the track. Pretty chilly (41o), windy (17 mph from the west). Whatever. My knee didn't hurt. On the way I still couldn't remember how many 400s I was supposed to be doing - 8? 10? 12? - but eventually settled on 12. I knew I was going to have a little more than my planned total of 6 for the day, but didn't do the extra math to figure out how that would translate into the right number of repeats. Since I'm training for Rehoboth's pikermi now, it stood to reason that more was probably better and since Louie didn't hurt (I may have mentioned that), it wouldn't be doing me any harm. I could always cut it short and hobble back home. I half expected that to happen, to be completely honest. I like to run my intervals on feel, not checking the pace until after each rep at the earliest, and sometimes not even until after the whole run. I tend to press too much. At this point in my comeback that would be extraordinarily bad. So I kept TWYTBN under my sleeve until I got home, and these splits were just as much a surprise to me as anyone else. I'll get to those in a minute. About 4 reps in, a guy ran past the track. A few minutes later I see him on the track, getting ready to do some rounds. Run together? I'd have been open to that, I guess. But while I was still a hundred meters from the end of the 400, he lined up at the start line and took off, tracking a just a tad faster than I was going. Intervals? I tried to guess by his pace, then by how many laps he did. But he never stopped. One, (800s? Nope.) two (1200s? Nope.), three (1600? Nope.), four, five. Eventually I gave up. He did pass me once while I was on a recovery 200. Only had to say, "Hey," without actually engaging in conversation (score!). He was still going when I finished my 12 and trotted home. Did I mention my knee didn't hurt? Left calf got a little tight, as did the right adductor. Had to be careful through the last few reps instead of pushing, which I guess is a good thing. They bothered yesterday, too, so I'll need to give them some stick/foam roller attention the next couple of days. But there was no trouble with the knee (I may have mentioned that). OK, splits. 1:38.4 (6:34) 1:40.7 (6:43) 1:43.6 (6:55) 1:47.0 (7:08) 1:49.9 (7:20) 1:48.5 (7:14) 1:45.6 (7:02) 1:46.5 (7:06) 1:47.8 (7:11) 1:50.3 (7:21) 1:48.9 (7:15) 1:48.5 (7:14) Average 400 - 1:46 (7:05) Jogged easy home and saw my total for the day was 7.75 miles. The plan was six, with 8 x 400. Oops. Mondays tempo was also a success. 6 total with 4 @ 8:00, including 7:34 for the last one. Not expecting a PR in four weeks, but 1:40-45 seems reasonable. Let's talk about Saturday (last), too, shall we? This was my first double digit run since you know, and I'm finding adventure in most of my running again. Ten miles means I can run to some of my fun places to run. I can get to where the hills are, for one thing. The city's Turkey Trot was Saturday, and I thought about running it, because it's starts at the park across the street and if I was in shape I'd be among the leaders. But I really wanted to run ten miles. So I ran the Power Road Footbridge. It's ten miles and has some climbing and the weather was beautiful and I ran a nice easy pace and it was the most amazing thing. Got back near the house just a few minutes before they started the race, so I hung around and soaked up the atmosphere. Going to run a 5K tomorrow, though. It's the one at the high school where the boys ran. I've done it several times in the past when it didn't interfere with marathons. I normally win the Master's title, but didn't defend my crown last year while getting ready for Rehoboth. It's a cutback week so only 8 miles on the schedule. Just a few more before/after the race and we'll see how the competition is this year. Did I say anything about my knee not hurting? So, that's a thing now. Hey, wasn't the New York City Marathon something? I'm not one for repeating marathons, but I'd make an exception for NYCM. Oh, and I suppose I should also note here that the decision for Rehoboth was made. Sort of gave that away with my note about a time goal up there. Free flight. House just a mile away from the main group. And I'm running well enough for a decent pikermi. This will be fun (duh!). Only four weeks to go. And then we can start looking at spring marathons for real.
  24. Dave

    Big news!

    I don't really like Louie.