Posts Tagged With: treadmill

Empty Words

The quick and the dirty: running on Peaks didn’t happen for a variety of reasons. That’s the bad news. The good news is that somehow, in some way, I am still on target to complete 1000 kilometers by December 31st IF I run three miles a day. I haven’t fallen apart completely. I haven’t given up completely. However, I’m still that zone of believing I can’t run 93 miles in 31 days. Is that, in some weird way, better than saying I can’t believe I can run 93 miles before January 1st? No matter how you say it I’m disbelieving.

Last Sunday, while the Patriots were almost pummeled by the Jets, I ran an even nine miles with New Guinea. Halfway through the run I thought I heard the tread cough. I can’t explain it. I definitely heard a thud and I pretty sure it came from below my feet. When it happened again I listened close to the motor. Was it going to seize? Was it struggling just as much as me and myself? Upon a closer listen I couldn’t tell. I kept running.

Last night on a six miler it happened again – at mile three. This time I convinced myself Guinea was ready to go. A weird thud like the backfire of an old jalopy, just not as loud. A muted bump in the tread. It took me another two miles to puzzle it all out. I mentioned in passing last post I’ve slowed my pace to preserve my legs. Well, my body has not adjusted to the slower speed at all. As a result I’m stepping on the housing unit of the motor. That’s the thud. I’m getting ahead of the belt and hitting the plastic casing. Duh. So dumb.

Anyway. I’m still shooting to finish this 1000k challenge. Really, I am. I finally figured out a plan for the rest of the year. This is what I need to do to make it work:

Dec 1, 6, 8, 13, 15, 20, 22, 27, & 29 = 6.3 miles each
Dec 4, 11, 18, & 25 = 9 miles each

If I stick to this plan I will be left with one measly mile to go…on New Year’s Eve.

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Closing In

I am still not confident I will complete this 1000k challenge. Everyday I mentally play with the numbers and wonder for how long I can keep this up. My targeted average is still 2.8 miles a day from now until December 31st. If I can keep that up I will succeed. Notice I said IF i can keep that up. There is the thought fear that I can’t. Last night I ran 3.23 at a ridiculously slow pace. Through the night my body grew progressively achy and by 2am my hips were on fire. Lying there in the predawn hours listening to my hips sing I couldn’t imagine running the same distance later that same day. My body has since stopped bitching but that doesn’t make it easier to picture even two little miles with New Guinea.

But! But. But, I am closing in on my goal. I have epic arguments with myself over methods to the madness. Do I run six every other day in order to give myself rest? Do I need that rest? Or! Do I run three every single day and hope that half the time means half the damage?

Silver lining: thanksgiving on Peaks. I love, love, love running Peaks. Maybe I can put in a solid nine and close the gap a little more? Wouldn’t that be cool?

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This Just In

Quick update. Last night I gritted my teeth, swallowed my fear & to said to hell with it. Last night New Guinea and I went 3.3 miles with… no issues. That’s the yawn part. Running isn’t my monster right now. When I settle down for sleep is the ghost that haunts me right now. But. But! But, let me bask in the glory of going three point three first: Nose breathing for the first mile? Check. Finding a rhythm so I could close my eyes and lose myself after that first mile? Check. Inner voice not finding issues with feet, knees or hips? Check. Check. Check. I love it when the treadmill and I are on the same sentence, right down to the same frigging word. It has taken me over a year to get back the confidence to run blind with New Guinea – although Guinea is not so ‘new’ anymore. Even though I find outdoor running easier, the tread is definitely my good, good friend (as you right remember when I had to say goodbye to the Gerbil. I cried for days. I imagine I will be just as sad to lose Guinea one day.)

But anyway, I’m derailing…

Sleep. I need to say this. I was NOT kept awake by any twitching or tingling! Hooray for small miracles. If I listened carefully to my legs, and listen I did, I could hear electrical “jits” every once in a while. I likened them to distance thunder and fell asleep with no problem. I had weird dreams about gambling and a farm stand and a girl wanted to kiss me, but that’s a whole other story.

The plan is to run another three tonight. Since it will be too dark to venture outside by the time I get home it’s me, myself, moi and New Guinea!

Song of the run: don’t hate me: Roar by Katy P. I like how my feet match the beat during the chorus.

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Hot Child

ODAAT – One Day at a Time – has turned into Hell in a Hand Basket…whatever that means. I’m tempted to review my last entry just so I can remind myself where I left off but I will tell you the same thing I told myself. NeverYouMind.

Let me tell you about the strangest run ever. Last Wednesday I was slated for eight to nine miles. I think I told you that much. It was a balmy 91 degrees with 90% humidity. Dripping-Sweat-Standing-Still kind of weather. I knew it was going to be a New Guinea run but somehow I also knew there was going to be trouble. Don’t ask me how I knew because I felt fine for the first six miles. Somehow I knew to grab a wet towel, though. But by mile seven there was a special kind of struggle. I found myself eyeballing the countdown clock, willing it to go faster. Instead, with a mile to go, I slowed down. Like waaay down to an almost eleven minute mile. With four measly minutes to go, I stopped completely. 8.5 miles in 91 minutes. It wasn’t long after that the real fun began. Muscle spasms and twitchiness, chills, dizziness, sweats, and all out exhaustion. Every rib hurt. Every skin cell ached. I asked Kisa to make dinner but by the time he put it in front of me I couldn’t swallow a single bite. Believe me, I chewed and chewed the same forkful because when Kisa cooks it’s heaven. Usually. Not this time. I was in hell. Heat exhaustion. My core temp was spiking and, and. And! Since I had never experienced anything like it, I was oblivious to the issue.
With two days of rest and fluids I was fully recovered by Friday but Kisa refused to let me run again until the humidity had broken…last night. 8.7 in 90. Not a huge difference in performance but the temperature made all the difference.

Best song of the night – Tell Me Where the Wild Things Are by Alessia Cara.

ODAAT – tonight is supposed to be a repeat performance of Monday. Wait and see.

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Earn the Respect

I have to earn back my body’s respect. No doubt about it. Injury doesn’t find me because I am a sucker for pain. It’s not like I like getting hurt. The stupidity of it all is that I am a slow learner. I’m in the movie Groundhog Day and wake up to the same injuries run after run and like Bill Murray I need to figure out how to change the outcome. It’s the only way to move forward.

Last night I took Nate Helming’s tutorial video to heart and did everything he asked of me: warmup exercises, one mile nose-only breathing, cadence check every 5 minutes and decent cool down. The end product was a 6.4 mile run that felt phenomenal.

Notes to self: five minutes of warm up running felt odd. I know New Guinea was confused when I jumped off only after half a mile and I could almost hear him ask That’s it? When I returned 15 minutes later I launched into the mile of nose-only breathing. I thought it would be more difficult and was pleasantly surprised to realize I actually know when to keep my mouth shut! What a revelation.

I do know better than to post a week’s worth of training. I learned my lesson the last time. One day at a time is my new motto and in the spirit of ODAAT, here is the schedule for tonight:

  • 5 minutes of ascending squats and pushups.
  • Core yoga with Rebecca
  • Roller

August miles: 6.41

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Pike Pick

What do you get when you cross an eight-week challenge with a 36-week training schedule? One hell of a good workout! Last night was just shy of spectacular. I’ll get to why it wasn’t over the top in a minute, but first – the workout(s).

Day II of the Stronger Challenge was called “Iron” and was a little easier than “Fire” in that the cardio wasn’t as intense. Instead there were a lot of “pike” position exercises which I was fine with except to say I’m not sure I kept perfect form 100% of the time. My arms are definitely feeling it after the gazillion push ups and my knees definitely do not like squats…of any kind. But,  I got through the 34 minute routine with a smile on my face. And it didn’t stop me from the second challenge of my new year. Remember the 36-week thing I alluded to? Well, I had a scheduled three mile run to bang out as well.

Confessional: New Guinea and I ran this one a little slower than our newfound love pace of 10.10, but three miles are in the books. No. More like 3.3 miles in 35 minutes. The only reason why I didn’t call this workout spectacular is because for the second day in a row, no yoga. Last week I did some kind of 30+ minute routine EVERY day and now I’m beginning to feel the absence. Bummer. Maybe tonight. Tonight’s Stronger routine is “Soldier” with no run. Time to visit Christine, Sage or Jessica!

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the Dying Art

I’ve been thinking about death quite a bit lately. It might have something to do with losing a beautiful friend in September. It might have something to do with running a marathon in order to properly grieve the death of my bestest cousin. It definitely has something to do with the death of a library patron/friend a few weeks ago, the death of the guy we bought our house from (only 43 years old!) and the demise of twins, empathy and sympathy.

But. But! But, there is one thing I refuse to let die: the art of writing a good letter. People have asked me about the Christmas cards to Strangers project. More info about that can be found on LibraryThing but I guess you need to be a member… I’m excited to send out cards for a few strangers. It’s the least I can do in this age of caring less.

Letting things die is an interesting concept. In stressing out about compromises and keeping things copacetic I lost my connection to the concept of letting go. If you let something wither, technically you didn’t kill it, correct? Neglect doesn’t equal murder unless one side of the equation is truly hopeless and helpless. Am I right?

Last night I jumped on the tread for exactly eleven minutes. Why 11? I wanted to see how far I could go with my eyes screwed shut. I wanted to run blind, even if it meant half a mile. When I turned off the sight and ran by sense of balance I got as far as 1.04. Well, at least that’s not dead.

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The Edge of Comfort

This weekend calls for a 13.1 mile run – a place I have been before. Four times, to be exact. I’m not exactly worried about it except that I’m running the route without psych support. The in-laws are outlawing it in Europe and The Kisa is Rocky Mountain High so I’m solo. Coming off a dog attack and coming close to the edge of my comfort zone, I’m nervous. This weekend marks the end of what I call chartered territory. In two weeks I’ll delve into numbers I’ve never seen the likes of before. Can you say you’re lost when you’ve drawn your own map? How does that work?

Maybe it’s because last night’s run was full of impatience. I think I was off my game even before I hit the tread. Consider this: I took extra time to lube New Guinea’s belt, wash his display screen, light the rose scented candle for Duane (yes, I run with a candle burning, just like a drummer – how cliche), turn on the fans – all three of them, stretch the crazy tight quads, sip the lime water, futz with the hair, pick the super short shorts out of my azz, straighten the slipping bra straps, check the music, blah, blah, blah. So much circling the brain I found it hard to stop circling the tread. So hard to relax. Once on New Gin, finding that sweet spot was damn near impossible. 6.44 miles was a labor of love like a mother. Sometimes, you just want to smack the kid.

But, But. But! Did I tell you? No. I don’t think I did. New Guinea is back to behaving! Fixed! No unexplained heart rate anymore. You know what it was? It was the phone system. Electrical interference. I know, I know! Hard to believe but it’s the only explanation. When we lost our phones and Kisa killed the connection presto! the treadmill came back to life. We no longer have a doorbell/intercom but I have my mileage display. Whatever.

Last confession – hydration. Typically, I run on an empty stomach and I don’t carry anything with me. I can hear every runner now…You. Need. Fuel. Yeah, yeah. I know. I’m working on it. As I said, uncharted territory.

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C Student

If I were to grade myself right now on this training plan I would give myself a solid C. Not good. Not bad. Barely average in my world but passable as such.

I skipped a run in week one. Wrote a blog about it but didn’t post it. Managed to get in the long run (6.26 miles) on the treadmill but was so mad at New Guinea I dismissed it. Total mile for week one: 13.01

Week two was worse. I skipped a short run figuring running around doing errands should count for something: laundry, grocery shopping, waxing, work, packing. I must have gone up and down the stairs six dozen times. This always happens when I’m planning a trip to Monhegan.
Didn’t get to the long run either. Was supposed to log seven and I barely made 4.5 (4.6 according to MMR) because I was on Monhegan. This will mean nothing to you, but the long run consisted of: my house to the Ice Pond and partially down the boardwalk. Then Dead Man’s Cove and partially up the trail to Pebble Beach. Then up Lighthouse Hill, across the Ball Field and partially down the trail to White Head. I stopped dead twice. Once to negotiate a crazy rocky downhill and another to take a picture. Then up to the museum and down the graveyard. A quick stop at my father’s grave (a solid 30 second stop I will not apologize for) and then down in front of Trib. Down to the wharf and back up through town. Down to Fish Beach then up to the church. Down to the Mostel turnaround and then up Horns Hill. As far up into the Burnt Hill trail as I could and then back down again. Trailing Yew Hill to Lobster Cove path. Back up around brewery and down to Wyeth’s and finally, home. I was surprised it was only 4.6 but after watching the MMR video I guess it was only 4.6. Note to self: Monhegan is not an easy place to get in a super long run, especially if I want to stay out of the public eye. Maybe I should run each hill twice before moving on?

Now I am halfway through week three. At this point I should have logged 7 miles and I have 7.70 (all on the ever-frustrating New Guinea). Yes, New Guinea is still tracking my heart rate (as high as 277) and not my distance. Curious thing though – If I grip the heart rate bar I can get mileage. Ugh. Tonight is supposed to be an easy three (again with NG since we’re expecting hail and high winds tonight) with a long run of a short five on Saturday. I’ll probably do a simple six just to compensate for the slacker mileage from the previous weeks. But, here’s the thing – I’m not stressing about this lack of mileage just yet. This is chartered territory. I have been in these distances before and so I’m not bothered by not reaching them…yet. When I get to a weekly mileage I’ve never accomplished before, well that’s a different story. Right now I’m in my comfort zone.

I don’t want to discount the run on Monhegan either because it was positively sublime. Despite the pouring rain and the swirling fog I loved every second of it. Dirt packed roads, gravel, gnarly tree-rooted trails, soft sand, spongy grass but not a single inch of concreted pavement. I just need to figure out how to get in a longer run…

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Signs of Sickness

What do you do when you think someone is getting sick? The signs are subtle. Blips of imagined worry. Yet, there is nagging doubt that everything is really okay. It’s as if reality is trying to poke you every so often. Such is the case with New Guinea. We went for a short 45 minute run over the weekend and it wasn’t long before I was noticing something strange.
I can’t deny I am a numbers girl. I like data. New Guinea and I, we have this routine. After I have been running for a certain amount of time (it varies, mood dependent) I start messing with speed and incline. I like to switch up the display. Maybe watch calories climb for the duration of a song before switching it back to distance. In the time it takes Imagine Dragons to sing Demons I will have changed the display yet again. I play games with myself, battling the boredom with math: if I run the rest of way at this pace I will finish at 4.37 miles. I watch the numbers like a hawk.
This weekend was no different so it wasn’t hard for me to miss the first sign of sickness. New Guinea displayed my heart rate instead of distance. It was the quickest of blips but I caught it. Heart rate: 87. Errrr. What? How does New Guinea know my heart rate when I’m not touching anything? Maybe a drop of sweat? A little spittle? Okay, no. My feet are techincally on the belt but seriously! And yet…Before I could process the disturbing data New Guinea was back to displaying mileage. 2.17 miles. I breathed a sigh of relief and just when I was thinking I imagined the whole thing, heart rate: 178. What the what? Mileage 2.95. Back and forth, honing in on my heart while flashing hints of something ailing.
This has happened before. Only this –  the last time I cleared the data thinking it was an overload of information and the internal guts just needed a reboot. Not so this time around. I’ve logged a lot of miles on this treadmill. I shouldn’t be shocked it’s getting tired. But, what happens when I kill it? I’m well past warranty.

Categories: Confessional, running | Tags: , , , , | 5 Comments

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