Tales from 9 Runs: Run 2

Since I started running, I've been contemplating a memoir on health and fitness.  I've half a dozen chapters composed.  I start each chapter with one of the many failures I've had in my own personal health-war and move through the ways I improved and eventually, to some degree, overcame it.  I've tried a lot of different things over the years:  diet pills, bulemia, ove-exercising, under-eating (not quite to the point of anorexia), exercise equipment, strange diets, and others.  In hindsight, I've come to understand why I did each one and where I was faulty in my approach to health.  So the chapters would move from mistake to understanding the shortcomes of such decisions and how I've moved past (or at least reasonably ahead) of such things.  The title of this forthcoming book (should it ever be published) is:  Fatboy Shuffle.

Race number: 113
Why start off my second post in this series about it?  Largely, because as I run and work my body to succeed in race after race, this one project cycles (or run, perhaps) through my head.  In some ways, it propels me through each run; the idea that I could write this book; the idea that I could in less than 4 months time, run a half-marathon (ok, more than a half-marathon) and that this will have been a significant transition that occurred in just over a year's time.  So every time I take to running--particularly, races--my mind considers what it would mean to write this book; one accomplishment propelling another; one foot in front of the other.

Today's Results

Lance Eaton making his way to the finish line.
Chugging away...
Today's race was ok; not great, but ok.  I ran the run in 28:40.  Originally, I thought I did 27:40 which would have been much better.  It would have been a full minute from where I finished last year at my first 5K.  I'm not disappointed in the time; though I wish I had done better.  Being at the same time as my first 5K makes a certain amount of sense.  I put on some 10-15 pounds since then and I've not been running consistently for more than 2-3 weeks.  So yes, it's the score I deserve I suppose.  What fowled me up most though was that this course had more hills than I usually work with.  Uphills are totally fine.  I rather enjoy them actually, but downhills are killer.  With the Vibram 5-finger shoes, going downhill sucks because you feel the impact of every step.  There are ways to alleviate this such as maintaining your core, keeping your back straight or even slightly back.  However, with steep hills, I find myself almost doing a fast-walk rather than run for fear of injuring or slamming too hard.  And since I've been informed that the Around Cape Ann 25K is very hilly, I clearly need to do some extended training and do some research about how to improve on hills with these shoes.

My next run in two weeks is a 10K.  I'm hoping that I'm in better form to perform at something beyond where I've been.  I think in order to do so, there's at least 2 things I need to do.  The first is to run in the rain/not so fun weather.  I've been resistant to run outside in weather that wasn't under 55 degrees or reasonably agreeable.  When those days came along, I'd often use my spinbike for an equivalent amount of time, but it's clear I need to kick it up a notch.  Secondly, I think I should try to run in the morning more often.  Running in the afternoon has been good, but I feel the morning might be easier to maintain without interference from food.  Several times now, I've been running and still feeling the affects of lunch or hitting a slouch in energy.  I'm finding that the morning is a pretty active period for me (both mentally and physically) so it would make sense to take advantage of it.

The shoes done did
make the difference.
It's funny how much we tend to be like our parents.  My mother has always been an early riser.  For many times in my life, I was too.  For the six years that I worked overnight jobs (as did my father for a stint of about two decades), this changed a bit and even now, I'm inclined on weekends to sleep until 8am-9am.  But there's a part of me that likes getting up at 5am-6am and being awake.  Moreso in the summer than the winter, of course.  As my sleep has normalized in the year since abandoning overnights, I do enjoy the arising early and taking advantage of the quiet time.

So I guess I have my plan of assault for the next run.  Run more in the interim--despite conditions.  Research more on running--particularly hills and particularly with these shoes.  Aim to run more in the morning or better plan my afternoon/evening runs with my food/drink consumption.

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