Sunday, October 28, 2007

Running Handicap

Amy Hunold-VanGundy over at Runners' Lounge developed a runner's handicap this past week. If you're feeling poorly about your running, this should help:

Only a slow runner like me would come up with such an absurd idea like a running handicap. But it is Friday and there is no reason to be too serious. So, go ahead, try out my little running handicap calculator and find out what your new running pace would be:

Start with your average pace per mile for your most favorite race/run distance. (You can see this won't be too scientific...) Better grab your trusty calculator!

Subtract:

* :10 seconds per mile for each child and pet that lives in your home and borrows some of that extra energy that you normally could apply to running
* :05 seconds extra per child if you are a female and delivered any of those children - that's just a gift from me to you
* :10 seconds for each of the 10 pounds that you are waiting to spontaneously combust and disappear from your body forever
* :20 seconds for all your good intentions to run more consistently, stretch, stretch train more, actually run all the miles in your training plan - but rarely all this happens because family, work or personal obligations seem to always be at the top of the list
* :10 seconds if you live in an everchanging climate and 9 months of the year find it too cold, too hot, too snowy/icy, rainy
* :05 seconds if you regularly read this or other running blogs and sacrifice some of your free time to supporting/encouraging other runners (awwww - that is so nice!)
* :05 seconds for every year after the age of 16 that it took you to realize that running was really "your sport" and you had the painful task of learning it as a grown adult set in their ways
* (and for my husband and all other law enforcement...) 1:15 if running with 26 pound gun belt and a 5 pound vest

What's it add up to?

Well, for me, that gets my half-marathon pace down to 5:17 mpm and my "normal" training pace down to about 4:50 mpm. Works for me!! :-) Thanks, Amy

Run well, y'all,
Bob

Monday, October 15, 2007

BAD For The Environment

I just found out that today is BAD for the environment -- it's Blog Action Day and the focus is on the environment. Several of the blogs that I read regularly are focusing on this:

Half-Fast
My Part of Colorado
Diet Blog, though J Foster doesn't refer to BAD
No Impact Man talks about the environment every day
Care of Creation is a biblically based environmental organization that talks about the environment all the time

There is a group that is noticeably missing from that list....

I'm a disciple of Christ who practices his faith among the (large) group of disciples known as Southern Baptists. Historically, Baptists have been called a lot of things, but the term that stands out to me is people of the Book (the Bible). We're called that because of our doctrine that the Bible is the truthful, accurate Word of God, written by men who were inspired by God's Spirit. That being the case, we should be among the first to stand in defense of the environment -- not because we worship the environment, not because that is the way to salvation, not because it's the popular thing to do, not because we could gain publicity points for doing so, but because it's the right thing to do. We worship God, the Creator (only one of His many names), and when He finished creating the earth, Genesis 1:31 says the He saw all that he had made, and it was very good. David, second king of Israel, said in Psalm 24:1 (he was later quoted by Paul in 1 Corinthians 10:26), The earth is the LORD's, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it;

That being the case, Christians ought to be leading the charge to protect and improve the environment to keep it good and to show that we really believe that the earth and everything in it and everyone on it belong to God. But ... we've abandoned that task to others and then often have the temerity to call anyone who does fight to protect the environment a liberal.

I would love to have time today to develop a thorough post about the environment, but there are folks out there who really expect me to answer their e-mails sometime in this century. So, I need to get back to work. But before I finish, let me complete the thought that I started just after my short list of bloggers who are supporting BAD and talking about the environment.

... there is a group that is noticeably missing from that list. After a very quick glance at a few of the Southern Baptist blogs that I read, not one mentioned the environment today. I don't condemn them at all -- probably, like me, they didn't know that today is BAD for the environment. If I had the influence, I'd call out the Baptists to talk about and protect the environment because it does belong to the LORD we worship.

Hey, running is an enviromentally friendly form of exercise. When we're outside running, it's an extremely low impact sport.

Have you turned off a light today?

Run well, y'all,
Bob

Sooooo Good! :)

There are days when everything just falls into place and this morning was one of them. The weather report said it would be 48° but the thermometer at my house said 45° -- either would have been fine but I prefer the cooler. The sky was crystal clear at 5:30 and I could watch the stars. I headed out to run about 7.8 miles and ended up doing 8.7+. I set out to do a slow run and it felt like about 8:30 mpm (most of the time) but ended up being an average of 7:54 mpm. It's days like today when I know I love to run!

Run well, y'all,
Bob

Friday, October 12, 2007

Here's What Will Hurt After a Long Race


Perry Romanowski is a joggler -- juggles and runs at the same time. He just joggled the Chicago Marathon (3:59:00). His post today on "7 Pains to Expect After Running a Marathon" is a good head's up for those who've never run a long race. After the Maymont Half-Marathon a couple of weeks ago, I experienced the headache (dull ache, sorta' all over) and muscle soreness (hip adductors and gluteus maximus). The headache was gone the next day and the muscle soreness lasted 3-4 days.

Perry's blog is a good one to read.

If you're a new runner, the blog Notes of a Non-Runner will help you stay motivated. Nancy is training for her first marathon and has a great attitude. It's an encouraging read.

Run well, y'all,
Bob

Thursday, October 11, 2007

My Body's Back on Track (Updated)

Well, physically, I seem to have recovered from the half-marathon. Monday's run wasn't bad at all. I did almost 8 miles and felt good the whole time -- not that it wasn't hard, mind you. Wednesday, I did 5.3 and was back to my pre-half timing. I wasn't trying to maintain a specific pace and ended up at about 07:50 mpm.

But, I think my mind's not back in it, yet. Monday night, I stayed up too late and, without a training plan to adhere to (hey, body, get out of bed -- you have to do that tempo run or the half-m will kill you!), I just didn't get up to run. Same thing Wednesday night/Thursday morning. Just couldn't bring myself to roll out. There is some evidence of Post Marathon Depression. Now, I don't think I'm having Post Half-Marathon Depression, but the feeling of "What next?" is apparently very common.

There's a good article in the Nov Runner's World about maintaining summer fitness in the Fall. I think I need to set up my own training plan based on that. We'll see. For now, though, I'll try to be content with just running some.

Run well, y'all,
Bob

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Recovery

Last week, I discovered the importance of recovering. I took my young half-marathon partner's advice and did a short slow run on the day after just to stay loose. So, took off for about 2.4 miles and ended up doing about 3. Did 3 more on Monday. Tuesday, I thought I might be ready to pick the pace up a bit for a 4.5 miler -- nothing doing. I was a little faster than Sun/Mon but not like I thought. Skipped Wednesday and then started out on Thursday for a 7.8 miler. I still wasn't ready and cut back to 5.6 miles. Then Friday, I thought I'd do 5.1 and only did 4.6.

Frankly, I decided that there were probably 2 things going on. First, my body just needed to back off a bit. I needed the recovery. But, I also suspect that I may be suffering from a runner's version of post-partum blues -- post-race blues(?). I worked hard to get ready for the half-marathon -- had a definite goal, had a plan to follow and knew what I was going to do every single day. Suddenly, I don't have any of that. Without a goal and plan, I think I just didn't have anything motivating me last week.

The lack of a plan hasn't changed for this week. What has changed is that I took 2 days off from running. So, we'll see if the physical rest will do the trick.

Run well, y'all,
Bob