Saturday, April 20, 2013

Run for Boston

    Completed the Run for Boston 2.5 mile run in support of the Boston Marathon terrorist attack that happened on 15 April, 2013..  I ran an extra bit to make it at least 3 miles.  Was a nice day for a run, there were a lot of people supporting this run for the tragedy at the Boston Marathon.  It was also a great day to really show support on the day, or morning after, the second terrorist was captured.

 Time was good (coming in at around 30 minutes) considering I stopped to talk to a friend that was at the marathon for a short moment.  I was glad to see she is doing well. Also, to add the extra half mile I backtracked to run back in with a co-worker and their pace was a little slow.  Makes me want to go out and really push a 5k and see how I would really do.

  Several of my co-workers showed up to do the run too, was great to see support from both the community and military.  A couple of firemen ran the route in full gear to include oxygen tank on their back and a representative from the Mayor's office was there.  The Mayor has been known to do some runs within the community.  Augusta, GA is not a very big community but when the call for support goes out the people here show up, one of the main reasons I love living here.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Getting back on track

It's been over a month since my latest ankle injury.  I really took the time to let it heal since it was the other ankle I injured this time (did the left one back in September).  So far all is well with it.  I did a couple of runs this week, one on Tuesday and one today, to see how it does with two runs during the week.  I come to realize that I am a bit out of running shape after a month of no running.  My ankle is doing fine so far, just the rest of the body needs to get back in shape.

I don't plan on running again till Monday to give the ankle a few days to recover and not over do it.  It will be slow to getting my mileage back up but it needs to be done without re-injuring myself causing more damage. It felt great getting back on the road and enjoying a good run.  My plan is to try and get my mileage back up to half marathon distance within the next couple of months barring no issues.

Now that I'm back running I should hopefully keep the blog updated a bit more.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Ankle Injury, again

Well, didn't make it to the Columbia Half Marathon.  I badly sprained my ankle the day before the race by stepping in a hole.  I was pretty bummed out, hence the reason I haven't posted anything lately.

Now it's been a little over a week since I seriously sprained my ankle.  Still have a little "knot" around my ankle bone but I am walking a bit better now.  I can even walk up the stairs without any problem.  

I did a short 15 min walk on the treadmill today to see how things feel, so far no problems.  I will probably do a 20 min walk on Weds if all is still good to go.  I am doing this recovery slow so I can heal up and get back to my long mileage.  I am hoping that by the middle to end of next week I can be good enough to put in a short mile to see how things feel.  

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Columbia, SC Half Marathon

Just signed up for another half marathon in Columbia, SC on 9 March.  One of my co-workers that ran the Augusta half talked me into signing up for the Columbia one.  Can't believe I am doing another on two weeks after my first but there is a method behind the madness here.

I am using this as a test for how I have recovered and being able to do almost back to back half marathons.  With the way things are looking for October - November and if all goes to plan, I will have probably two half marathons plus a ten miler along with maybe a 10k and a 5k mixed up in there.  I want to see how my body does so I know what areas I need to train on between now and October.

It's going to be interesting to see how things go.  I think I will be fine and should be recovered enough by next week.  At the same time, what a good way to start the year.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

My First Half Marathon

Completed my first half marathon today, the GRU Augusta Half Marathon.  Started off by getting there about 1 hour early to make sure we got a parking spot.  Today was a beautiful day to run, temp at race start was 45 and by time I finished the race it was at 48.  Started off cloudy then the sun came out about halfway through the race.  It was a pretty well organized race, but then Augusta had done this race for quite a while.  I started of further in the back than I wanted to, wanted to start more in the front to middle.  

The race started on time, which is great.  I have done 5k and 10k races where they started anywhere from 10 - 20 minutes later than published.  The amazing thing I saw today was a young man that did the half marathon in a wheelchair.  Considering a couple of the hills on the route he did a great job of completing the race.   

The hills on the route where a little tough today and there were a couple of little hills I didn't know about between miles 9 and 11.  I ended up walking for about 30 secs a few times, my hamstring was bothering me.  I came in at 2:15:36 (even though Nike said 2:15:55).  I placed 635 out of 921 runners, which I am happy with for my first half marathon.  I enjoyed the run and got to see some of the guys I run with every week along the route.  

Here are my splits for the run:

1 8:32 -- 8'32"/mi

17:33 + 0:29 (-6%) 9'01"/mi

27:00:00 + 0:26 (-5%) 9'27"/mi

37:15:00 + 0:48 (-9%) 10'15"/mi

48:36:00 + 1:06 (-11%) 11'21"/mi

57:58:00 - 1:59 (17%) 9'22"/mi

1:08:17 + 0:57 (-11%) 10'19"/mi

1:19:05 + 0:29 (-5%) 10'48"/mi

1:29:05 - 0:48 (7%) 10'00"/mi

1:40:10 + 1:05 (-11%) 11'05"/mi

1:51:23 + 0:08 (-2%) 11'13"/mi

2:02:49 + 0:13 (-2%) 11'26"/mi
2:14:25 + 0:10 (-2%) 11'36"/m

As you can see the last few miles is where I slowed down quite a bit, this is where my hamstring started bothering me.

This race was a good benchmark for me to build on.  I know I can work on speed work drills to see if I can come in closer to 2 hrs and I know I need to hit the gym more often and do some leg workouts so my hamstrings don't bother me.  My next half marathon will not be until October or November so I have time to work on it.

I have come a long way in the past year and a half or so.  Went from not really running a lot to doing multiple 5k races in Kuwait.  After doing a few more 5k races here in the states last year I moved up to 10k races by completing a couple last year.  My goal was to do my first half last November but after rolling my ankle and being out of commission for a month or two kept me from doing it.  After slowly getting myself healed up and gradually tagging in the mileage I worked my up to this day.  Now I really know what the Runner's high is and I know I will not forget this day.

I can't wait to do my next half marathon, I think I have the bug now.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Tomorrow's The Day

Been a bit since I last posted.  Been pretty busy working, running and dabbling in some photography.  Tomorrow is my first half marathon and I can't wait.  I feel that I am ready and been working on carbing up and drinking plenty of water to prepare over the last couple of days.  The temp is suppose to be around 43 at race start and sunny, going to be a great morning to run.  There are three hills that I will have to tackle but I think with all the other runners around and the spectators I probably won't really notice them too much, at least I hope.

Stay tuned for tomorrow as I will post a race recap sometime.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Hit 11 Miles.....

I hit 11 miles this week on a run.   My plan was to do between 9 and 10 miles today but missed my turn and ended up going further.  One good thing is that I made it to 11 miles a week or so earlier than planned, but that's okay.  Now I really feel confident that I can complete the half marathon coming up later this month.

Missing my turn was also a blessing in disguise.  Since my Sunday long runs have been on the half marathon course, so I can get used to the big hill that's on the course, I ended up doing more of the course today.  The reason why it's a blessing in disguise is that there are two additional hills that I knew about but haven't seen till today.  With that being said, those two additional hills kicked my tail.  They were a bit steeper than I thought so missing my turn allowed me to get a taste of them.  Oh, and the last two hills were back to back.

Hitting the 11 miles today helped me get in 22 miles this week.  I wanted to get in more but as usual work got in the way.  I hope I can get in some good mileage next week.  Some of the mileage will be done in the new shoes I got this weekend. I bought a pair of Mizuno Wave Elixir 8. These shoes come in at 8.8oz and feel pretty good. I haven't ran in them yet, plan on doing 3 miles tomorrow to start getting used to them and breaking them in. My Brooks need to retire soon.  The good old Brooks have around 400 miles on them and the tread are starting to really show wear and tear.  The Mizunos felt great in the store and even when running around the parking lot so I hope they feel the same on a longer run.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Three Rivers Greenway

What a great way to start the week, finally hit 9 miles in my half marathon training. Ran on the Three Rivers Greenway in Columbia, SC today. Temp was around 42 which made for a good, comfortable run. The greenway is not that long so I had to do some back and forth to get my distance in. This made it a bit of a mental thing because I passed my starting point, where the car was, a couple of times to accomplish this.  I was thinking maybe I should have parked at the north end of the greenway instead of where I did, but I managed to push myself through it.

 I forgot to get some gels for the run and I felt it a little bit during the last couple of miles. I did have some Nuun with me to keep the electrolytes good. At least I had a banana in the car to eat, made me feel better a few minutes later. I now know not to forget the gels when on long runs.

This is a great start to the week since last week was very low on mileage.  I decided to take it easy last week after putting in around 27 miles the week before.  I hope I can push closer to 30 before this week is done.  I have roughly one month till the half marathon and can't wait.  I am on track with my training and I am confident that I will finish the race, just need to make sure I don't forget to buy gels to help get me through it.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

My Gear and Reviews

I started working on a page for this blog about the gear I use and a review of the gear.  I may also add gear I have tried and have my review on that gear too.   I hope to have a descent start to the page and have it active within the next couple of days or so.  I want to get a few things on there before bringing the page online.

Speed Work Today

Did speed work today.  Did 2 laps for warm-up to start.  Then did 4 x 400s with half track jog in between.  Did a 5 minute walk for a rest period then did 4 x 400s with half track jog in between.  Then jogged 3 laps for cool down.

Now I really don't like doing speed work because I do it on a track so I can track my laps and distance better.  Even though I have a GPS watch, I forget to keep track of where I am at and plus I don't want to add math to everything else I am doing.  I just don't like running on tracks because of the boredom factor. It gets monotonous running around in a circle for 4 miles.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

In Columbia, SC

Going to post the last couple of days in one post. After doing my run on Sunday had to finish packing so I could head to Fort Jackson, SC for a couple weeks of training.

Sunday: Ran part of the upcoming half marathon route, made it up the big hill on the route without walking unlike last week. It was great getting up to 8 miles, a distance I haven't hit in a while. Weather was great, temp this morning was in low 60s and a little cloudy so it kept the sun at bay. Later in the day was the 1 1/2 hour drive to Fort Jackson, needless to say I was a bit exhausted by the end of the day.

Monday: Did a little 3 mile run with a few hill repeats at the end. One thing about the area I am staying on Fort Jackson is the up and downs so I can work on hills to get used to them a bit more. My ankle was a bit sore (old injury) at the end and after the run. Guess it's time for new shoes. Once shoes start wearing out I will start feeling it either in my ankle or in my shins.

On my gel experimentation, I tried the Power Bar gel during Sunday's run. I felt a little queezy for a few minutes then it went away, maybe the extra water I took in helped. So far the Honey Stinger is the best one for me, I still have a couple other brands like Hammer Gel and some others that I will give a try.

There are a couple of areas here in the Columbia, SC area that I will run this weekend while I am here. Always good to run in a different area to break up the monotony of running in the same areas all the time. Not sure how far I will run, plan on keeping this week a lower in mileage than last week. I put in 28 miles last week so this will be the low week. I need to try and get between 8-9 miles in this weekend so I stay on track with my half marathon training.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Week So Far

Put in some miles this week.  I plan on running Sunday which will end the week with 27 miles.

Along with clocking in the miles this week I have been trying different gels to see which ones work and which ones don't.  After last night's run I found out that GU is one of the ones that will go on the no list.  After taking one halfway through my run it didn't sit too well.  FRS will also go on the no list.  I tried FRS earlier last year and it didn't sit too well either.  So far Honey Stinger doesn't cause any problems but I have some other brands that I still want to try like Hammer, PowerBar, and Crank Sports.

Speaking of Honey Stinger, if you haven't tried the waffles you should.  They are pretty good.  Not only do they taste good, they seem to be good on the stomach.

On a side note, the past week is the most I have written on the blog since I started.  One of my goals this year is to do better with the blog and share my accomplishments, joys and pains as I progress in my running adventures.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Recovery walk

Did a quick 2 mile walk today to recover from 3 days of running.  Put in 17 miles over the 3 days and since I plan on doing 7 tomorrow decided to take a break.  Things are going well so far in my training up for the Augusta half next month.  I am excited and cannot wait for the race so I can get my first half marathon under my belt.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Rainy Day

Did 10K loop of the Augusta Half / 10K run coming up next month. Today was chilly and wet, started raining on me about the halfway mark. The hill on the route was a bit of a beast and I know I will get faster going up it as I train.  A good start on my training for the half marathon.

Speaking of  training guess I could expand a bit more on the races I would like to do this year.

Augusta Half Marathon - 24 Feb
2013 Pinch Gut Puffer 8K - 4 May
Peachtree Road Race - 4 Jul (if I can get into it)
The Color Run Augusta - 5 Oct
Army 10 Miler - 20 Oct
Broad Street Ramble 10K - 26 Oct
Savannah Half Marathon -9  Nov
Atlanta Half Marathon - ??? (depends on date)

Looks like October will be busy for me it I do all the races that month.  As long as finances are good and I stay injury free I will attempt to do all listed above and maybe do some other races out there that may pop up.

I did 388 miles last year and would like to hit the 400 mile mark for the year if not more. I think it's time for me to kick my running up a couple of notches and really get serious with it.  I may never be very fast but at least I know I'll feel good doing it.

Friday, January 4, 2013

New Year

Now that the holidays are over it's time to get crackin'. My goals so far this year are to do the Augusta Half, which is 24 Feb, and the Peach Tree Road Race in Atlanta. If all goes well I may go for the Savannah Half later in the year since last year I injured my ankle a month or so before the race and had to pull out. I'm sure I'll do some 5 and 10Ks here and there.