Thursday, October 13, 2011

If you want a challenge...

Push a full blown stroller on a run (not one of those nice cushy running ones).

To all those out there who have pushed their progeny along in a stroller....I salute you.

Late last week I managed to sneak home from work a bit early in an attempt to get my run in.   I was planning on getting in 5 miles in an attempt to reach 20 for the week (my goal for October is 20 a week).  When I arrived at home I was greeted by my wife and my three month old (thankfully his older brother was napping).  This slightly altered my plans, seeing as my wife wanted to hand off the little guy so she could get some crafting done.   I don't have a problem with this, I just wanted to get the run in too (especially before my oldest awoke), so she suggested that I take him with me.

Now, we don't own a 'jogging' stroller so I didn't know exactly what to expect from this run.  (Why do they call it a jogging stroller, that is just asking for trouble?)  But I laced up, strapped the kiddo into his car seat, and attached that to the stroller and off we went.   My immediate thoughts once we were on the road were,
'Where is the flattest spot to run so that I don't have to push this bulky stroller up too many hills?' and "We need to stay in the neighborhood so as to avoid having to cross any of the major streets coming in. ""  Of course, the first thing I did was run down hill away from the house.   Before I knew it we were half a mile into this run, and of course, the nice even pace and the noise of the stroller on the road has put the kiddo to sleep.
I now start thinking about whether I can get the five miles in or not.   The first two miles are easy, I am running at a nice steady pace, the legs, while a bit strained from the added effort, feel good.   After three miles, I decide that we can make it through the five miles pretty easily, even though this is taking a bit longer than I had planned.   I pushed through with the run, moving up and down the hills with apparent ease, even tackling the wind that swirled around the neighborhood as we ran.   After about 4 miles, the little man awoke, and spent the rest of the run grinning at me.   I absolutely love that smile when you are clearly the most important thing in the world to them.

After that run I was half way to the goal for the week.   That night I took my oldest son to a hockey game (we have a local team that is part of the WHL), with his friend and dad.   We had a great guy's night out.   We went to the pumpkin patch and bought pumpkins on Saturday and finished putting up Halloween decorations with the oldest.   (I will try to get pictures of those up soon).

Sunday I met up with my running buddy to knock out 10 miles.   It was a great run.   One of those runs that wasn't too hard, but wasn't so easy that you feel like you should have done more, just a nice solid run.   We enjoyed the beautiful October weather, cool, crisp air, a slight breeze, a little cloudy.   We talked about all sorts of things (they are expecting their first child in December) and it all ended a bit too soon.   Alas, I did get in the 20 miles I set out to do last week.

Now, to look for a nice 'jogging' stroller.

Remember to have fun out there!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Why am I not running more? and What to do in the Spring?

Let's see!   I have been doing far more of what I want and far less of what is good for me.   That should read, I have been staying up too late watching TV (totally hooked on TerraNova) and playing board games with my wife and friends and not getting up at the onerous hour of 5:15 to run in the dark and rain.   That is not to say that I am not running, it just means that I am not running as much as I was, want to, or need to.   So I have made a goal for the month!   Run 20 miles per week every week of October

That said, I got off to a bad start.   Monday would be the first day of the week, and I had every intention of running, but between worries about the lay offs Monday which was causing some serious stress related stomach issues, and my late night the night before (trying to keep my mind off said lay offs) I missed out on running.   Tuesday, even after knowing that I had continuous employ, I was concerned about the lingering stomach rearing its ugly head on even a short easy run.

I did finally get back on the saddle, so to speak, yesterday with what turned out to be a fantastic run.   I hit the roads early to dark clouds and a smattering of rain.   I took off on my trusty two mile loop in hopes of getting 4 miles in.   My loop runs up the hill from my house and back down through the neighborhood, at both ends there are two mini-loops that are between .65 and .75 miles in length, great little add ons to a run.

Well, I was feeling so good yesterday that I decided to do the mini-loop at the bottom of the hill an extra time before taking off back up, then once up there I decided to add that one an extra time too.   I ended up finishing a great 5 mile run up yesterday morning in just under 45 min.   Then it was off to work for a very busy day (we did lose one guy from my group).

On the other side of this coin, the run when and how I feel like coin, my wife and mother in-law are a bit concerned that I am giving up the running.   Which is not really the case, I just haven't been prioritizing it, and it probably has to do a lot with the job stress mentioned above.   Which caused me to really slow down how much running I have been doing.   I have no intentions of giving up (I am far to addicted to the feeling of running), just interested in finding a balance in my life.   I just feel like doing a few other things while trying to make sure I maintain a level of fitness I am comfortable with.   I am pretty sure that my running buddy went through this after the Half we did in June.

To that end I am looking at Half-Marathons (or longer) in the April to June time frame.   Of course, I am going to run Bloomsday again in May and am looking forward to that.   But, I am looking for races in the Washington state Oregon area.   So if you know any that are awesome, or that you are going to run in too, let me know.
Just remember to have fun out there guys!