Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Where does the time go???

I am acutely aware of the fact that I've been pretty slack in my blogging this month, but I didn't realize that it had actually been almost the entire month that I've been away. Holy Cow! It's been a crazy month around here. We were out of town for a little bit in the first part of the month and I guess I've been playing catch-up w/ almost everything else in my life ever since and this is the one part of my life that has been neglected.

Well, even tho' it's not officially winter yet, it sure feels like it here in the good ol' Pacific NW. It hasn't been super cold, but when the temps are combined with wind and rain, it is certainly cold enough. That is, cold enough to drive this fair weather runner indoors.

I have been logging lots of hours on my treadmill lately in an effort to not run in the cold, the wet, or the dark. My DH works a schedule that includes three super early days each week and two later days for start times. In the last few weeks (since getting back from our trip earlier in the month, or maybe just slightly before that), I have taken to getting up at the super early time each morning, even those mornings that my DH doesn't go into work as early, so that I can get my run or alternate workout in before he even gets out of bed in the morning. This means on those early days, I am out of bed and on the treadmill by 4:30 am. Yikes!

The jury is still out on whether or not I will continue to keep up these crazy early workouts. They are pretty miserable for me. I drag myself out of bed, have just a little bit to eat to kick-start my metabolism and then start running before my body has completely caught up with my brain... or maybe it's my brain that needs to catch up with my body... I'm not sure which is lagging behind, I just know that the various parts of me are definitely out of sync at that hour of the morning and it takes me about 30-45 minutes to get out of the fog and actually feel like I can get through an entire 90 minutes.

The upside to this whole exercise in masochism is that I am completely worked out, showered & dressed for the day by about 6:30, so once my DH leaves I can get to work on whatever projects I have scheduled for the day. I've always been a person who loves feeling "ahead of the curve." When I worked as a facilities & project person in my previous life, I was to work by 6:00 am each morning because I like getting my brain mentally prepared for the challenges of the day before the work days officially begins for other people. So, doing something similar in my home life appeals to me on some level.

ON the other hand... like I said, running at 4:30 is crazy tough for me. I have a friend (you know who you are) who constantly amazes me by going for a run every morning even earlier than this. While I am completely in awe of this, I'm not sure I will ever get used to doing something similar myself. Yes, my day might be officially underway nice and early, but it might come at the expense of having a completely satisfying, accomplished-feeling workout. These workouts go a long way toward keeping me humble. I often end up playing little mind games with myself just to get through the thing... is this a good thing or a bad? I just don't know.

In the meantime, I just keep on keepin' on - getting my miles in each week and trying to continue on the path to improvement little by little each week in my treadmill bedecked winter cave.

Today's Run (an early day as you can tell from the fact that my pace was actually slower than my long run day!)
7.0 Miles
5.24 mph
11:27 pace

Monday's Long Run
13.1 Miles
5.25 mph
11:26 pace

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Maybe my brain is just oxygen starved...

So very few people in my "regular" life can appreciate what we runners go through on a regular basis in order to be runners. They know that anything over a mile is "a lot" and that we are some of the very few people that will appear in crowd of several thousand people without showering, without makeup WHILE wearing spandex. To most of the people in my "regular" life, this just boggles the mind. The only other people who might consider doing this (at least the no showering/no makeup thing) are those crazy campers... yeah, okay, I'm one of those too... so that's a second strike that makes me look just plain weird to the people in my regular life.

I guess all of this is to say that I wanted to share something with you all out there, my cyber running buddies that many people just won't appreciate. A few weeks ago I posted a blog about how I had multiple toenails that are receding. Well, on the up side of things, I'm happy to report these toenails are all still hanging in there. None of them has really receded that much further and I'm starting to reconcile myself to the fact that I may just have 1/2 toenails for the rest of my life as a runner. What I hadn't expected is what happened this week during my long run... my toes weren't particularly happy about Tuesday's run, but then they never are. Let's face it, 13 miles is a lot to subject any part of your body to and the toes are going to suffer, so I really hadn't given it that much consideration until I was done an peeled my icky, sweaty socks off. It was then that I noticed it... a blister in a spot where I used to have toenail! Agh! Talk about adding insult to injury!

Of course, my brain, being the sick and twisted thing it is, took this to the next logical step... what happens if I start to develop a callous where this blister currently resides? I already have callouses coming up on the tips of most of my toes from blisters that used to come up there on a regular basis. Now, if one were to develop where the toenail used to be, would this one lone toe have a "callous helmet" of sorts covering the entire top of that toe? Hmm... There's some food for thought!

Anyway, I know that my running buddies will appreciate that sad irony of this situation and maybe won't see it as quite as "totally out there" bizarre as those "regular" people around me who don't choose to go pound pavement on regular basis... at least I hope this is the case!

Tuesday's Run
13.0 Miles
5.26 mph
11:24 pace