Sunday, August 31, 2008

Get your bike tires pumped up...

If Gustav has his way, gas prices are really going to pop. Plus, it's a great way to crosstrain while recovering from those running injuries.

UPDATE: Gustav has eased. But biking to work is still great exercise. And a whole lot more fun than driving!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Grindstone update

I'm out.

-----Original Message-----
From: Neal Jamison
Sent: Thursday, August 28, 2008 11:56 PM
To: Clark Zealand
Cc: Horton, David
Subject: grindtsone


With many regrets, I'm out of Grindstone.
Good luck with this epic event.
See you at MMTR.

I have a bit of peroneal tendonitis.
It really acts up on uneven trails.
I need to heal.


Good luck to all of you in the last few weeks of training. See you at MMTR and/or Hellgate.

Run healthy out there.

Monday, August 25, 2008

I'm heading to the Podiatrist

I had a great 60 mile training week last week up until the last 8 miles. Most of my miles were on the flat, paved bike path in Duck, NC (at the beach). I also did a good deal of walking, as well as a few sets of sprint intervals on the beach. I had virtually no pain in my feet all week. Sure there was some soreness, but nothing that a few rolls on the tennis ball and a dip in the Atlantic didn't solve.

On Sunday I headed up to the AT for a 20-mile solo run. 7 miles into it, my right arch started aching again. It started as I ran over some of the rocks and roots that mark the AT in this area. Is it bruised fascia? Or Plantar Fasciitis? Most likely. Is it a stress fracture? Probably not, but I should rule it out. It's a nagging pain. Not one that makes me stop, or even causes a limp. But if it hurts after 7 miles, what will it feel like 50 miles into my next hundred?

So I called all of the local podiatrists today, making appointments with all of them until I finally got an appointment for this week. Wednesday, 3pm.

I have 4 good training weeks left until Grindstone. My fitness is as good as it has ever been. But it's hard to get "time on the feet" when the feet need time to heal. So this week will be mostly metabolic conditioning training with weights. Zero miles until I see the doc, and maybe none until this weekend. Labor day weekend is traditionally a big training weekend for me. I'm heading into this one with fingers crossed.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

54 miles on the Duck NC Bike path

54 Miles on the Duck, NC bicycle path has reassured me of one thing...

I'm hitting the AT tomorrow!

Run softly out there...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

La Playa

Today was the first day I've ever been happy to miss the Thursday sprint workout. In between sprint sets we usually do some other form of cross-training exercise. Today, in my absence, the group decided to do walking lunges.

I hate walking lunges. Thank goodness for business travel.

But then again, I'm sitting in the airport in Atlanta. I just ate a very small pizza which with a bottle of diet coke cost me about 9 bucks. So far all of the flights have been running late. This place is the most crowded place I've ever seen, and everyone is in a hurry to get nowhere.

Come to think of it, I'd rather be doing lunges.

Tomorrow I'm heading to the beach for a spell. I'm not coming home until I learn to surf.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Running with GUTS

I had the great opportunity to run the GUTS Tuesday night run with the Georgia Ultrarunning & Trailrunning Society. Starting and finishing on Janice Anderson's porch, we did a beautiful 6.2-mile loop on the trails in the rain around Kennesaw Mountain. Great run. Great post-run social. Great pizza on the way home.

Thanks GUTS runners for a great run.

Tommorow I'll be back with the Yardie boot camp in the park.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Fitness Bootcamp in Atlanta

I'm in Atlanta on business, and when here, I always love to run in Piedmont Park. This evening I got bored running around the track, so I ran through the park to a favorite grassy hill for some repeats. The hill I chose, I did so for a few reasons. First, it's about 75 yards long and pretty steep. Second, there was a group of women doing some exercises nearby, so I had some company.

These women were taking part in a weight loss boot camp put on by a group called Yardie Fitness. Watching them work on that hill reminded me of episodes of the reality weight-loss hit show, The Biggest Loser. These gals were not obese like many of the contestants on the show, but they were all a bit overweight, and doing something about it. They were out there busting their butts on that hill -- running up, walking down backwards, jogging up carrying dumbells, returning to the bottom for pushups, situps and so on. I was motivated just running on the same hill with these gals. It's not everyday you see seemingly sedentary people doing hill sprints.

I was about to quit, and they noticed I was leaving, so they called out.

"Hey, don't go! We were trying to keep up with you, and we have 7 more to go!"

That's all I needed to hear. I trotted over to where they were, and introduced myself. Over the next 20 minutes I ran 7 more repeats with these gals, and had a lot of fun doing it.

Were they running hills to train for a 5k or ultramarathon? No.
Were they running hills to get faster at running hills? Not really.

They were running hills for one reason: To improve their fitness.

Tomorrow I hope to join Janice Anderson and the GUTS for a trail run. But I told the Yardie Fitness ladies I'd be back on that hill on Wednesday.

Find a good hill and give it a try sometime.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Back on the mountain, again

Tuesday's lunchtime run found me back on one of my favorite training grounds, Mill Mountain. As I reported before, this popular lunchtime run takes me from downtown to the top of the city and back in right at 6 miles. The first 1.5 is a relatively flat warmup to the base of the mountain. Then it is a steady climb, about 1.5 miles (up the "old road") to the star overlook. The total elevation gain is just under 1000', most of which is in that 1.5 mile climb.

I've never really tracked my time up this route, but I thought that might be a good way to judge my fitness as I head into the last few weeks (Yikes!) of Grindstone training.

Tuesday I was at the top in 28 minutes, total run 51 minutes (970' of gain). I did not run the whole climb up. Treated it more like intervals: ran moderately hard for a couple minutes, then walked for a brief rest period before running again. Next time I will run the whole way and see how the time compares.

Run hard out there...

Sunday, August 3, 2008

22 miles of road running

22 miles of road running this weekend taught me one thing...

I have to get back on the trails.

Run hard out there.