Friday, August 29, 2008

What I talk about when I talk about running

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
This is definitely a running book. I can't imagine a Murakami fan would want to read this (unless they were also a runner), but I found it a very enjoyable read simply because I am. This is an autobiography, centered around the author's life as an amateur runner. His simple philosophies are wonderfully explained through examples drawn from running and training. I found myself agreeing with him time and time again.

View all my reviews.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Tempo or intervals?

It was touch and go this morning whether I had the motivation to go run, but somehow I made it out the door. Mostly, I think, I wanted to try out the new insoles I just put into my shoes. Custom heat-molded, you heat them up in a warm oven, slip them into your shoes, and stand in them for a couple minutes. Although they take up a little more room in my shoes than I expected, I think they'll work out great. They give me just enough more stability and make me feel centered in the shoe. Felt good this morning, anyway - we'll see how they do down the road...

So I was supposed to do 5 miles this morning - a mile warmup, three tempo miles and a mile cool down. I headed down toward the Truckee River (where it's nice and flat), started going faster at the mile mark, and kept track of how far I had gone on Lumpy. After a mile at about 7:00 pace, I needed to stop. So I jogged another half mile, turned around, jogged the same half mile back, then did a mile back at tempo pace. A slow mile back home finished me up. So, I don't know whether to call this a lame tempo workout or a really long interval session.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Easy start

Just a nice easy little early morning run to start the week - not even 3 miles. Not even much to say about it...

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Getting back on track

Man, I'm bad when I don't have a plan. My hip and the late-night Olympics watching have combined to make me really lazy this week - didn't run but once, and didn't even do my morning core workouts. But I edited my training plan this morning to point me at a 8K in 4 weeks, to give me an intermediate goal and try to get me back on track. Hope it works...

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Windy early

Got out for a five-mile loop pretty early this morning; early enough, in fact that I stayed on the road instead of taking my favorite little off-road long cut. There were clouds out to the east, which was making the early dawn a little darker than usual. One of my standard loops, starting out up a decent sized hill, then a flat section, then downhill to home. Serious headwind on that uphill, too - blowing the breath right out of my mouth. Calmed down on the flat section, though.

I was thinking this morning about how my 3 mile loop feels like just a little pop around the neighborhood, but this five miler feels like kind of a grind. Wonder why that is?

Keeping a close eye on the hip, still. Not much clicking and popping, but it doesn't feel strong. I actually had some butt cramping cramping of the left gluteus major - I think it was ready to clench if the hip gave out. Fun stuff.

Pretty good average pace, right about where I want to be, but the first coupel miles sure felt like a slog...

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Track day with Team Library Dork

I felt good enough on my short run yesterday that I decided to join my coworkers, Amber and Chris, for a track/stairs day. We did this a few times about a year and a half ago, in the spring of 2007, but haven't made it together since. Kinda wish we would've gone at 7 (when it was cooler) instead of waiting until 8, but oh, well...

We met at the entrance to Rancho San Rafael - they parked, and I stached my bike since it's only like a mile from my house. Did a mile and a half warm-up ending at the UNR track, then proceeded as follows:
10 bleachers
400 m
10 bleachers
600 m
10 bleachers
800 m

I didn't really get good times, since I haven't really figured out how to use the 405 in a situation like this. (In retrospect, I should've turned auto-lap off and lapped every time I started a new set.) It was tough, though, but felt good. Hip felt fine until the warm-down, when I got a little lazy and had a big twinge. I sat the rest of the warm-down out.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Trial run

Ventured out to test the hip on a little 3 mile loop around the neighborhood. Felt great starting out, developed a couple little clicks near the end, but nothing like where it was last week. Makes me optimistic about how this hip thing is going to turn out - just need to be pretty careful and do my special exercises.

Glad I'm not doing this right now - Peter is in the middle of a speed record attempt on the Tahoe Rim Trail right now. Cheers to him, I'm definitely keeping him in my mind today...

Friday, August 15, 2008


Been a little quiet here lately, because I haven't been running this week. After the aborted run on Saturday, I decided I needed to get my hip looked at, so had a doctor's appointment on Tuesday, got an x-ray, then had a physical therapy appointment yesterday, Thursday. I got to choose where I went, so I tracked down the same guy who looked at my shoulder last year, and who I was pretty impressed with. He took a look at the x-ray report, asked a couple of questions, and got to work. Did a few adjustments, which straightened things out a bit, gave me some exercises and stretches to work the right parts the right way, and stuck a little heel lift in my shoe. Also gave me some bad news: from the x-ray, one of the things that they could tell is that I'm susceptible to hip arthritis - so, unless I want a couple of hip replacements in 20 years, long-distance running probably isn't the best sport for me. Kind of lame, as I was starting to really like the marathon/ultra thing. But I will keep running somewhat, maybe aiming for some quicker 10K/5K PRs for now. Then maybe get a bike, phase into triathlons, road biking, etc.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Aborted hillclimb

Headed up Mt. Rose Highway early this morning to do a trail hillclimb with Chris. The plan was to be running by 6, done by 7:15 to get back to town so he could make work at 8:15. Came pretty close to that, and he made the top of Relay Peak, but I had to stop a little over halfway.

My hip's been bugging me. Noticed it a little on my long run last weekend, more while playing golf on Tuesday, and even more on my Wednesday morning run. Took a couple days off, but this morning it was not good. Poppy, grindy feeling in my left hip. Got bad enough on a couple of uphills that I was forced into a hobble. Chris went ahead, and I kept going for a little while before I decided I was better off heading back. He caught up and passed me on the way back down, and I sped up as much as I could to make it back to the car so he wouldn't be late for work. Almost fell a couple of times on the way down with a sharp pain in the hip, and now the rest of me is sore from favoring it. Not sure what I'm going to do about this - might try sports massage, and/or a trip to the doctor for an orthopedist referral. Kind of dismayed over this - pretty much the first time I've had an injury that affects my running.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Interval FAIL

I've had the FAIL Blog on my feedreader for a few weeks now, and even if the subjects don't always totally crack me up, I at least like the titles. Beverage FAIL. Family picture FAIL. Success FAIL. Anyway, that was me this morning.

Workout this morning: 5 miles, 2 of which were supposed to be at 6:33 pace, with 1/4 mile in between the intervals, the balance taken up with warmup and cooldown. Yeah, complicated. So, I ran down to the Truckee River (1.3 miles) ran until Lumpy said 1.5 miles, then picked it up. I held 6:30 pace for, oh, 1/3 of a mile. Backed off to where I felt I wasn't going to die, and continued out to 2.5 on the watch. Hit the lap button, turned around, and kept going as fast as I could sustain. Back to the interval starting point, and slow down. Chugged the 1.5 back home, with a couple traffic light stops. But boy, I sure didn't hit the times I was supposed to. Oh well. Haven't been hitting the speedwork too hard lately...

Garmin note: Ran through a sprinkler and the bezel freaked out. The backlight turned on, and it took me like 3 minutes of messing with it to get it back off. Fortunately I'm not a super sweater; I've read of people who can't use their 405's because their sweat screws up the bezel. (Mine just seems to collect under the watch band and makes squelchy sounds when I take it off. Sorry if TMI...)

Oh, and Happy Birthday me. 36. Wheee!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Unknown motivation

Not sure what got me up to run this morning - I sure didn't feel, last night, like I'd want to run today. Actually, I didn't feel like running this morning either, but I got up, threw my stuff on, and got out the door somehow. (Must be having the training plan written down on a calendar... )Once I got started, I felt pretty good. Did a 6-mile easy run, the backwards (counter-clockwise) version of a loop that I sometimes do. Funny how you don't realize where the downhills are until you go the other way and see them as uphills...

Saturday, August 2, 2008


My long run this week was supposed to be 10 miles, but I ended up going 11.5. I actually had thought I'd go about 15, but just wanted to get home at the turnaround point.

I did basically the route of the Reno Rock-n-River half marathon, but came back along 4th street instead of retracing my steps along the south side of the Truckee River. Nice, though - I was running back toward the rising sun, and had a beautiful view of a really pretty sunrise.

Other events - scared a deer out from under the Mayberry Bridge while it was still pretty dark. Scared me as much as it, I think. And ran by one of the coolest houses in Reno, for sale. Anyone got a spare 989,000 they'd like to let me have?

Huh - I wonder what those three pace spikes sere right in the middle of the run?

My mile split times were pretty good, though...