Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Running thoughts - future choices?

Now that I am slowly becoming a runner again I have been giving a bit of thought to what do I want to accomplish for the remainder of the year? If I sign up for races like the Afton 50k, Twin Cities marathon and Surf the Murph 50 miler, I will hurry myself  to ramp up the mileage and end up injured which is what I want to avoid.

So over the weekend I did a couple of test runs and here is my conclusion - I am in pathetic shape but I did not have ankle pain. I know part of me being pathetic was the heat since I have had zero days running in it and both days when I went running it was in the 80's but realistically, I have a lot of work ahead of me. So all things considered what do I want to do?

First, I have to say kudos to Wayne for running and finishing a 100 mile race over the weekend, yes the same weekend day when I couldn't make it 6, unbelievable and a well deserved kettle. Looking forward to add a link to your race post :-).

Back to me, I thought more about focusing on TCM but I would rather take the $100 and run a few more races like Wild Duluth and Big Woods and Walker or ...... well, you get my drift. So what am I going to do?

Well, I have given it a bit of thought and here goes. I am going to work on the things that really are holding me back. Which in my opinion are two primary things, make that three: My work-life carryover, my weight and my injuries. I personally think the injuries and weight go together at least a little but realistically I have been injured since last September and did less than 10 days of cross or alternative exercising. Heck my wife does 10 days of alternative training in 2 weeks so I have to get realistic and do a better job of identifying and doing alternative workouts. The work life thing is about priorities and is something I have to work on, I could now run almost every day before work yet I haven't, why? The answer is I have had a lot of things going on at work and have hurried in and had to stay later to get the projects done, I need to invest in myself. So I am thinking that if I only try to run 3 miles before work, then most of my excuses on time go away. I historically have only wanted to do runs of 5 to 7 miles or longer, why waste my time for 3 miles? Well, I am slow enough that 3 miles takes longer than it used to, meaning years ago 3 miles took between 20 and 25 minutes, today it's like 35 minutes at least on trails and you know what that's a decent workout.

So where am I heading with this? I am thinking about working on aligning my desire to do shorter workouts with something that might help me on the injury front. And what does this mean, it means I am going to venture into the world of minimalist running and invest in a pair of "somethings" that help me (ok make that they will force me to) work on my form. Right now, I am doing the research at the link above (great reviews on some of the minimalist shoes) and various other places and blogs on the net and then I am planning on heading over to TC Running to take a look at what they have. If I end up buying a pair, I will post about the learning curve it takes for me to convert to a midfoot running form. I have read many of the books on minimalist running such as Chi Running, Born to Run and others and I think there is merit in mixing it into my routine. So for me, this can be my alternative exercise and don't worry as I go down this path, I will ease into it as I don't want it to cause other injuries but it would seem like a natural thing to do for a 3 mile run before work run.

One last thought or maybe it's a bitch, I have now run 2 days before work in Hyland and both days I ended up with a wood tick on me (I hate when I feel something crawling on me). I have run in Lebanon Hills for years without any, go figure.

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