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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Limping Into The Holidays!

Due to a couple of Doc appointments for my bride this week, was only able to get in four runs and two gym workouts. I ran 11K on tuesday, with 31 minutes at 10K pace. Thursday I ran an easy 10K. Saturday I did another 11K briskly at around what would be half marathon pace if I could orthopaedicly run a half! Today I did another brisk 8K in the cold wind, just because I was freezin' my ass off! So 40K total for the week.
I have been able over the last ten days to figure out what is going on with my right knee. The symptoms stabilized at the outer knee about two inches below the center of my knee cap. So, just like last June when I was upping mileage and doing speedwork on the track, I have irritated my Iliotibial band. Back to those particular stretches I don't like that irritate my back while I am trying to stretch the lower knee band insertion point, cessation of any speedwork, and lots of icing. Last summer I had it a month, and I am struggling with it for about two weeks now. Damn cold november and december aren't helping things any. Will keep trying to run and move thru it.....
Everthing is bought, wrapped, delivered, and squared away for christmas. Joe and I see UNM vs NMSU basketball on saturday. I will give him his gift before he leaves, as he will be gone from sunday thru the 29th in laughlin and vegas. Otherwise, my bride gets more shots on thursday, and we see the attorney tomorrow to have him tell us what he is going to do now as far as finally sending demand letter(s). Farm bureau is asking for 5 years of medical records. Of course we signed all these releases back in June, and they contacted nobody. Just more delay tactics. Humana wants about 5 grand off of any settlement we would get as subrogation. Doubt we will end up with much more in our pockets than a vacation once this is all resolved......

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Flagging Motivation!

The week started pretty well, but the weather and my orthopaedic issues conspired to make the finish pretty difficult. Monday was a gym day, and tuesday I did the customary 10K with 30 minutes in the middle at 15K tempo pace. Wednesday was an easy 7K run. That evening, those rainstorms came in from california, and when I awoke on thursday it had rained overnight, and was followed up by a whole day cold drizzle. Temps never eclipsed 50 degrees. I had scheduled an 8K run for myself with a plan for 5 two minute sprints with two minute recoveries. I normally warm up for about 20 minutes before raising the intensity, but it was so damn cold and I was aching so much, I pushed the warmup out to almost 30 minutes. The intervals were more orthopaedically painful than difficult from the usual VO2 max standpoint. When I got home, I tried to stretch out, and then took a hot shower. My feet, my fractured ankle from being hit bye the truck, both knees, my lower back, my neck, and left shoulder hurt the entire rest of the day.
On friday I hit the gym again. Weather was the same as thursday, so I went in and came out feeling sore. I did manage to push out three sets of 12 reps at 160lbs. on the leg press machine. My goal by the end of January is to get my sticks to be able to push out 3 sets at my current weight of 180lbs. I need to get the muscles around my cranky knees to take on more of the load, so that my knee joints can be punished running for a few more years.......
On saturday, the weather was still the same. Humidity was 84%. I was still sore. For the past 6 weeks, I had done a 13K long run on saturday. I started out sore and got worse, so at 8K, I decided to do a fast finish run, and call it at 10K. Today the weather finally returned to low 60's, sunny, and cloudless. I did an easy 7K, and my body finally was less sore. I realize that these painful days are reminders of my arthitic body probably getting closer to the end of all this. Like I said before, next year will probably be my last racing year, and I will also have to reign in my enthusiasm and make sure I keep my weekly mileage capped at the 40K mark.......

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

A Life Based On The Concept Of "Minimally Effective Dose"!

When I was working thru getting my blood pressure under control, I experimented with a couple of drugs, and finally settled on lisinopril. After playing with dose, I was able to settle on a 5mg dose which made my blood pressure reasonable, but didn't cause much in the way of side effects. Minimally effective dose. This concept is applicable to many other aspects of my life these days.
Due to my orthopaedic limitations, I have settled for around 40K a week of running over 4 or 5 days. I can't run more that an hour and a half without a lot of soreness over the following couple days, so I have limited racing to those events that take around a half hour to an hour. I need to do some running at intensity, but even though short sprints and fast intervals would be a great fitness builder, I again have too much follow up pain from these kinds of workouts. So, I keep my two weekly runs of intensity at a 20 to 30 minute threshold or sub threshold run, and keep my shorter interval workout in the three to five minute interval range......any shorter than that I tend to go too fast and pay the price over the days that follow. So, for what is left of my racing attempts, they will have to be based on this level of training.
When I go to the gym, I do 8 specific lifts......the first three are multiple muscle group exercises that I do three sets of, and the other five I do just two sets of. I keep headphones on and don't talk to anyone (unless a pretty girl asks a question or for a spot), and my entire workout takes between 40 and 45 minutes. That is about the level I have found that allows me to bust my hump before I either start to get tired, sore, or lose my concentration.
When I drink, I usually start with a beer or glass or two of wine, and then hit the bourbon for a couple glasses on ice. I try to enjoy the buzz, but stop short of getting stupid. Usually pretty effective with that.
Weather it is making investment decisions, managing our budget on a one page sheet, keeping my caloric intake as light as possible, or most other aspects of my old man retired life, I try to keep things very simple, as well as try to find that minimally effective dose. My ability to maintain my concentration and multitask are much reduced over the last 20 years or so, and at times I feel like I am developing senior ADD. Guess that is also why my blog posts are so short......
Anyway, my right knee (the one broken 4 1/2 years ago from the truck hitting me) has been stiff, arthritic, and achy this fall and winter, so I have started my gym workouts with a set of leg sled presses without weight, and then once loosened up, a second set with two 45lb plates, and a third with two 25lb plates. the sled mechanism itself is around 60lbs, so that totals out at 150lbs and I look just like this guy, except my legs are like rotten sticks, and the only bulging vessels are those varicose monster veins in the back of my legs......

Sunday, November 30, 2014

A Tale Of Two Diametrically Opposed Runs!

Had a pretty good week of weather and running. Went out for 5 runs for a total of 45K. Tuesday I ran 10K with 31 minutes at 15K race pace in the middle. It felt effortless, and was one of my most enjoyable runs of the year. Wednesday I ran 8K easy. Thursday, I got out in the late morning, as we were heading over to June's house around 2 PM for thanksgiving festivities. The run began just horribly. I got to the twenty minute mark, and gave serious thought to stopping. Convinced myself to run ten more minutes. Didn't feel any better. Pushed out another sixteen minutes for a total of 7K. Man it was horrible. The diametric opposite of Tuesday. Monday and friday were gym days, and on Saturday I did a long run of 13K. I have done one of those for each of the last 5 saturdays. Each time, it turned out to be a windy day. Today I went easy again for 7K.
My race scheduled for sunday the 7th of December has been cancelled. Seems the guy who puts on these 30 half marathons a year around the country is an embezzler. He collects all this money for charities, and it never gets there. He commits to paying for police and race workers, and they never get paid. So, My next race will be the biggest loser in las cruces on january 18th. So, to stay motivated, my goal for the remainder of the year is to get to the 2000 kilometer mark for the year, which would average 40K/25 miles a week for 50 weeks in 2014. I lost two weeks with the death flu in February. So lets hope my body and the weather cooperate and get me there.....

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Another Longer Week!

The week started with fairly nice weather which began to deteriorate starting on thursday. I got 5 runs in again for a total of 46 kilometers, or for E2, about 320 minutes. On tuesday I did 8k with 21 minutes run at 10K pace. Wednesday was an easy 8K. On thursday, it was much colder, but I did 10K fairly briskly after warming up. Friday I hit the gym (as I did monday). On saturday, which was colder still and fairly windy, I slogged thru my 13K long run. Today was the absolute worst.....a 7K run that was supposed to be an easy recovery run, which was run in 30 mph winds with gusts up to 45. Had lots of extra clothes on today including knee warmers, calf sleeves, gloves, stocking cap, and two shirts. The wind chill still made it feel pretty cold.
Yesterday morning my toshiba was attacked bye malware. Some crazy shit called "ad by crime watch". F@c$ed my computer up all kind of ways. I tried system restore, running my norton 360 in safe mode, and norton repair kit, but it all failed. So, for the second time in two years, I got online with Norton to chat, and let them take over my computer from india (guys name was Mumot), and watched for two hours as this guy clean the living shit up on my computer. Besides clearing my virus, he cleaned out 916 other unwanted advertising sites, unwanted cookies, and quarantined viruses. It took him two hours, and it was fun to watch my computer fly all over the place, but when he was done, it was like getting a new laptop. I thanked him profusely and told him not only would I give him an A+ review, but that I would tell norton that it was because of him that I would renew norton 360 for year three in february. For $50 bucks a year, to have access to someone to fix the thing when you can't from the comfort of your couch while you are relaxing and sucking wine is just dandy!
Frank sent me this picture in response to my picture I posted last sunday, calling me a wuss and telling me to come back to cleveland. Love ya frank, but that is sure NEVER GONNA HAPPEN!!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Exceeding Last Years Total Kilometers!

Even though I had Deb take this picture last tuesday so I could post it on facebook and mock all those painesville ohio snow pictures everyone was posting, it did finally get colder here yesterday and today. Was in the low 50's both days with very cold 20-30 mph winds. Not all that pleasant. That is light glove and stocking cap weather for me!
I ran 44 kilometers for the week over 5 days. I ran 8K on tuesday with 30 minutes of threshold included. Wednesday I did an easy 7K. On thursday I ran 9K with 19 minutes of alternating one minute sprints and recoveries in the middle. Saturday was supposed to be a long EASY run, but with the winds, it ended up beating me up pretty well. Today I finished with an easy 7K. I have run 5 days a week for all of the last 4 weeks averaging 44 kilometers a week.
Last year was a rough year early, but I did manage to run a total of 1746 kilometers, or 1083 miles. Or, at my slow speed in E2 tracking, somewhere around 11,905 minutes! Anyway, with today's run I have reached 1751 kilometers with about 6 1/2 weeks remaining.
As for racing, I plan to race on December 8th, January 18th, Superbowl sunday, and late march. So it looks like, if I stay healthy, will get a race in monthly. That is plenty for this old body. Continue to look for a 15K or 10 mile race to run next year (just can't orthopaedically do a half marathon), but all the ones I could find involve at least overnight travel. So, we shall see......

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Lots Of Running In Nice Weather!

Beautiful day today. Bright sun and a high of 70 degrees. Got out and washed the car (C+ Job Ernie!), washed the front entryway to get rid of the spiders and their webs, and cleaned out a few months of windblown debris. Then spent an hour or so cleaning up leaves and junk from all of my landscaping. My neighbors are smarter, they have an electric blower and just blow all the shit into my yard. The last few weeks have been a mix of low 80 degree periods, and low 60 degree periods. So, have had to wear shirts when I run on occasion (damn!). I see that for next week, all my friends in ohio are going to get to enjoy the first polar vortex of the early winter. Looks like they may have another bad winter like they did last year.
Been running a lot of late. Over the last 22 days I have run 138 kilometers for an average of 6.3 kilometers a day. I will try to keep it up for the next 4 weeks until I taper into my 5K race on December 8th. Feel generally sore, especially my mid back, but I think that my spine and knees are just generally arthritic these days.....probably be that way thru life's finish......