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Archive for the month “August, 2011”

Smile Maybe Even Laugh

A co-worker of mine (before he knew that I am a runner) said to me, “I don’t understand runners they always look so miserable when they run. I have a neighbor, who runs all the time and he never looks like he is enjoying himself.” I said you probably see him at the end of a run and no runner looks like they are enjoying themselves at the end of a run.

After that conversation I made an effort to think back to when I first started running. I starting running to fill a void that injuries had created. I couldn’t play rugby anymore and I needed a stress release. In the beginning I didn’t love running, but I grew to love it fairly quickly and it became part of my lifestyle. So if I love running, why don’t I appear to love it when I do it? I set out to make a change.

Now I will break out with a goofy smile or even laugh while running. I will admit it wasn’t natural at first, but the more I did it, the more I felt better about my running. I have been able to overcome “bad patches” aka times you feel awful when running by smiling and/or laughing. I even have received such a rush from doing so, that the top of my head tingles and I forget all about any pain or discomfort.

At a 10 mile race earlier this year, a fellow runner told me I was the most relaxed runner he had ever seen. Maybe this smiling thing will change the perception of us by non-runners, who will then join the crew.

Give it a try and see how you (and those who see you running)  feel.


Run With Authority (Song)

Home from my most encouraging long run since before the Fargo Marathon. After weeks of heat shorten or hampered longs runs, it was great to be able to run for the entire 18 miles. No walk breaks or cutting anything short.

It was cooler this morning, which helped a great deal. The real main reason I was able to stay strong though out the run came from the book “Born to Run” by Christopher McDougall. If you love to run (as my brother had told be a few months back) you have to read this book. Read this book to get back to a time before cell phones, high fructose corn sirup and corporate cubicals. Life doesn’t have to be lived in a box, out of a box or in boxy running shoes.

True I work in the corporate world, but I choose to run to have a taste of freedom. To taste a time when not everything was shipped, trucked and delivered to your door. We have become a lazy nation. The thought that our kids are going to die before us is scary. I hope the example that I am setting for my kids is that it is easy to do nothing. I am sure the sight of Dad limping into the house doesn’t invoke a “Hey let’s go do that.” attitude, but someday I hope they realize that anything worth having comes with hard work.

Race Day Off

Well the calf  issue that cropped up during the Bix 7 has put me on the shelf for a planned 5k this morning. I was able to train since Bix, however during a track workout on Tuesday it barked at me and this week became an adventure of a dubious nature.

The compression socks will have to come out of  the drawer and back into running uniform. I can run slow, but can’t push it for now. Tomorrow I have a 18 mile run planned and I am hopeful the gravel trail (soft surface), icy hot application, said socks, massage treatments, icing tonight and a few prayers for good measure will get me through.

 Such is the life of a plus 40 runner.

2011 Team LIVESTRONG Run – General Donation

Chicago Running Shoes

With Bix behind me, my focus is on to the Chicago Marathon and a pretty big decision to make. Nike Free Run or Mizuno Alchemy?

 I have built up my training this summer to all, but my long runs in the Frees. Since I bought my second pair of the Frees I have done all of my races in them. The longest race distance has been 7 miles with a training run long of 10. I am unsure if I can make the change from the Alchemys to the Frees for the full marathon distance. I will take a test at a 1/2 marathon in Sept. and see how that goes before making my final choice.

I must say I want to make the switch permanent as I feel more, er, well, er, free when I run in the Frees. I realize that is a no dah statement, however the connection to the ground is important when running. The big support shoes block that feeling and encourage improper form.

The switch is a slow process. 10 years of long distance running in the motion control shoes has created an addiction and atrophy effect on my calves. The calves have been the biggest roadblock in the transition. They like to tell me quick when I try to do too much too fast.

This summer I have been listening to my body and I have been relatively injury free (there’s that word again). The less in more approach to running shoes seems to be helping me in the long run, so maybe it is time to take the long run to the Frees.

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