Saturday, February 26, 2011

I made up my mind.

"The old grey donkey, Eeyore, stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought to himself, 'Why?' and sometimes he thought, 'Wherefore?' and sometimes he thought, 'Inasmuch as which?' and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about."

Sometimes I think those things too! At least that's what I think about running right now. Things still seem to be wavering between one of two extremes--either a run/workout is completely effortless and feels downright magical, or I get my $@*t completely rocked in what should be just another workout. No in between. Either up or down. Black or white. On or off. You get the idea. Why? I dunno. Wherefore? Beats me. Inasmuch as which? I don't even know what that means.

But hey I can't complain because at least I think I'm moving foward! Further, after a completely life-altering discussion with Paul Michel a couple of weeks ago concerning his views on pre-arranged marriages in India and other vitally important cultural topics, I came to an important conclusion during our discussion: I'm going to do the Running of the Green 7k and not the Gate River Run 15k on March 12th. Yes, it's true, I made a decision. You heard it here first! It was amazing really, one of those milestones in life where you think to yourself, "You know, that was a big step just now. I'm an entirely new person at this moment. I KNOW what I'm about and I explain myself to no one!" Thank you Paul! I appreciate you for bringing me to such a cornerstone in life! And you think he's just plain fast? You think he's just got a really symmetrical face? Wrong on both counts! He is a wizened sage, an Obi-Wan-Kenobi-caliber mentor with an old head on young shoulders who has incurred the wisdom that can only come from having lived the lives of countless men.

But really, it took me a long time to decide that. About the race I mean, not Paul. Because even though it spanked me last time, there is and will always be such a special place in my heart for Gate River. But a 7k played better into the racing plans for springtime than did a 15k so I had to put my sentiments and emotions aside, think like a rational animal, and make a choice. Plus I'm still trying to track down my missing Mojo. So that'll be the "opener" for the year--and hopefully a good year!

I haven't raced since Clubs but have gotten in a good chunk of training, not to mention uninterrupted (hooray!)--putting in the workouts and building up the long runs--which I'm pretty sure was all that I needed to get back in buisiness. The next couple weeks will tell! In any case, ROTG will be the perfect opportunity to shake off some cobwebs and get back at it.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


About once every week I'm forced to ask myself, "Does life imitate art or does art imitate life?"  Generally, I tend to side with former but some moments in life can make you stop to reconsider.  I recently went over the concept of peripity--the literary concept of a character going from the highest high to the lowest low or vice versa--only to have it play out in my training.  Since the middle of December I've had my sights set on the Gate River Run 15k  (Jacksonville, March 11).  Although I've been injury-free my training had been so-so until last week.  Last week, I managed to get in a surprisingly good track work out and tempo run (both efforts surpassing my expectations).  After the tempo run on Saturday I uttered the damning phrase, "It looks like I'm fit and I'll have smooth sailing until Jacksonville!"  I went for an easy 50 minutes in the afternoon, only to wake up on Sunday feeling like I had just been trampled by a herd of manic elephants.  Since I uttered that cursed phrase I've only managed to get in three runs in five days.  I would say that there is good news, but I don't want to jinx myself.  I just hope that I can get through my tempo tomorrow and on to Jacksonville in one piece!          

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Race Last Week

I had a good race last week at Colorado School of the Mines 3k. It was exactly what I wanted out the race! I wanted to go out hard and simulate what Gate River was going to feel like and then settle in the a solid pace after the mile. The first mile was 4.36 and then I closed out the race with a 8.47 i believe.

One interesting note: I warmed up with Paul Michaels before the race and he was acting very weired. He was kind of infatuated with my mustache and was asking me a lot of questions... and not normal questions... It was like who's your favorite wester gunfighter? where did Banana Hands go to college? Can anyone grow a mustache??? And then at the end he asked me to call him Pete? (Is Pete his middle name?) Anyways that was kind of weired so Scott if you reading this please keep a close eye on Paul(or Pete) he might be need a friend right now.

Well training is going well and coming back around like 2 years ago. I'm very trim right now and feeling light as a feather for most of my workouts. I'm still a little slower then where I was 2 years ago, but i'm getting close to the same workouts. You know what I always say I've got some training to get to and it's not going to dominate it's self!


Before the race i shaved the beard and only had the mustache and a very solid mustache I must add!

Monday, February 21, 2011

New Ground

Well, training was going really well for the marathon for a couple of weeks since my last post. Despite some despicable weather I was still hitting the nice 100+ weeks I was after. Things were feeling good until about 10 days ago. Then, out of no where my Achilles decided to feel as though there were knives stuck in it. At first I did not think it was a big deal. I took a day off thinking I just had overworked it on the snow and a little rest would be enough. the next day that seemed to be true for the first 8 miles but after that things got ugly. Worried, I got a massage and took another day off. This again seemed to help but only for a day as soon thereafter it hurt again. This time I tried a tape job to support the area and managed a decent run on that. However this again was only a one day fix and the next day the same tape job did little and I wound up walking home because I could not even run. This was the low point for me. As I walked home (uphill into the wind) freezing my @$$ off I was pretty certain I would never be able to run again and that I should just give up. I forgot how mentally anguishing an injury can be as this is the first time in 5 years I've ever been forced to take more than a day off due to unusual pain. Needless to say I didn't really deal with it well. Luckily I have a wonderful wife who refused to give up on things as quickly as I did and she knew just who to call. A short bit later hope was restored as she contacted Adrian and Adrian put me in touch with an expert in running related injuries. I was fortunate enough to get in right away and he has me up and running again already. I am no where near my full mileage yet but I am glad to be able to get out the door on foot again and if things continue as they have been I will be back at full mileage next week. I haven't lost too much training yet but I fear I may have to choose another race. I have not yet decided if this step is necessary but I do not want to go into my race with any doubt that I am ready to run my best. Only the next few weeks training can make this decision and I will post again when I know more. Until then happy (and healthy) running to all.

5 minutes with Tommy Neal

This past Friday evening I was able to share a light warm-up jog with the 2011 Colorado School of Mines Last Chance Meet 3ooo Meter Champion Tommy Neal of The Boulder Running Company. I probed him about many things, ranging from his current training and life in Colorado Springs to the inspiration behind his new moustache (pictured). Here is a brief excerpt from that interview...

P: Hey, Tommy. Great to see you again. Huge fan of your work. HUGE fan.
T: You know...just takin' it one step at a time. (He sniffles and itches his moustache)
P: I noticed you are sporting a new moustache.
T: Is that a question?
P: Umm...Well, what was your inspiration? Was it difficult to grow?
T: I guess I've always just sort of been fanatical about the Wild West. I grew up on that stuff. I saw the Wyatt Earp moustache as a chance to...well...reflect that. Not only that, but having the wherewithal to anticipate that this race tonight (3k at School of Mines) was in Historic Downtown Golden...I knew I had to capitalize.
P: Interesting. What's on the horizon for you?
T: Hmm...(Reflective pause)...I don't know...hopefully a wife, a couple of kids, white picket fence...maybe a Dodge Caravan. You know, the American Dream. I guess that's all I ever wanted.
P: No, I mean races in the near future.
T: Oh. I'm doing Gate River next month.
P: Is Banana hands going to be there?
T: You mean Haefer? I don't think so. Anyhow, I'm not sure it's really an ivy-league sort of get together.
P: What is that supposed to mean?
T: Not sure. Just livin' life, my man. I say whatever I want and let my running shoes back it up. Listen...this has been great, but I have a race to get to. It's not going to dominate itself, if you know what I mean. Listen, take care...(pause)...what did you say your name was, again?
P: Paul.
T: Paul. That's right. OK...well take care, Pete. Tommy Out.

(On a sidenote, my training is going well and I will open up the outdoor track season at Arizona State on March 19th.)


The last few weeks I have been in kind of a slump training-wise. I haven't been all that motivated to train hard though I have still put in some okay miles. I have been busy with work and family stuff and I am sure that has contributed to the slump since I haven't been getting as much sleep as I would have liked. Below are the last two weeks of training. I finally bought my ticket to Jacksonville, so I am committed to Gate River. I am excited to race and run better than I did there last year.

Monday 7
Training Run 12:00:00 PM - 12.00 mi @ 1:24:00 (7:00 pace)
Tuesday 8
Running Workout 11:15:00 AM - Anaerobic Capacity Intervals - - 2.00 mi @ 15:00.00 (7:30 pace)
Wednesday 9
Training Run 4:30:00 PM - 10.00 mi @ 1:11:00 (7:06 pace)
Thursday 10
Running Workout 4:00:00 PM - Hill Repeats - - 4.00 mi @ 25:00.00 (6:15 pace)
Friday 11
Training Run 6:00:00 AM - 4.00 mi @ 30:00 (7:30 pace)
Training Run 12:00:00 PM - 11.00 mi @ 1:18:00 (7:05 pace)
Saturday 12
Sunday 13
Running Workout 2:15:00 PM - Long Run - - 14.00 mi @ 1:40:00.00 (7:08 pace)
Running: 69 mi

Monday 14
Training Run 6:00:00 AM - 4.00 mi @ 30:00 (7:30 pace)
Training Run 4:45:00 PM - 10.00 mi @ 1:10:00 (7:00 pace)
Tuesday 15
Training Run 12:00:00 PM - 10.00 mi @ 1:12:00 (7:12 pace)
Wednesday 16
Training Run 6:00:00 AM - 4.00 mi @ 30:00 (7:30 pace)
Running Workout 11:30:00 AM - Aerobic Capacity Intervals - - 3.25 mi @ 17:00.00 (5:13 pace)
Thursday 17
Training Run 9:30:00 AM - 7.00 mi @ 50:00 (7:08 pace)
Training Run 5:00:00 PM - 4.00 mi @ 30:00 (7:30 pace)
Friday 18
Training Run 12:00:00 PM - 5.00 mi @ 38:00 (7:36 pace)
Running Workout 5:00:00 PM - Anaerobic Capacity Intervals - - 0.62 mi @ 2:40.00 (4:18 pace)
Saturday 19
Running Workout 10:00:00 AM - Long Run - - 14.00 mi @ 1:39:00.00 (7:04 pace)
Sunday 20
Training Run 9:30:00 AM - 9.00 mi @ 1:04:00 (7:06 pace)
Running: 85.4 mi

Workout Highlights:
2/16: Workout with Art at the Mines outdoor track. We did 2xmile w/ 1:00 rest in 5:00 then 2x600m in around 1:42 with 1:30 rest and 2x400m in 63 w/ 1:30 rest. We both felt tired and ended up modifying the workout from 4x600's to 2 6's and 2 4's. Still and okay workout despite the 20mph winds.
2/19: Long run alone on the bike paths from my house. I have been having some okay long runs even though I haven't been feeling that great. Clocked several miles around 6:45 feeling easy.
Rabbiting the mile on Friday night at Mines. I only made it through 1k in 2:40. I was hoping to run at least 1200m or even finish if I felt decent. Just never felt smooth and was hurting at 800m in. I hope this just means I am in 15k shape not 1 mile shape... Also, still dealing with hamstring pain and tightness.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Break Time!

After a fall season fighting a serious lack of motivation, I decided that I really needed a break. I was searching for the reason for the overwhelming burnout and the best that I could come up with was that I needed a break. Not my usual 4 days off, 3 days easy. . .not even my annual week or 2 off, but a real break. You know, the kind where you don't have another big race on the horizon so as you are resting the anxiety is mounting because that race is getting closer. I thought this sounded great! Now don't misunderstand. . .I'm a runner. I love it. So the break consisted of me running nearly everyday, but no speed workouts. And I promised not to beat myself up too much if I missed a day here or there. The funny thing was, even with no race plans, the nagging desire to get out there and challenge myself wouldn't go away. Well, some days it wasn't too hard, especially with having more than our share (in my opinion ) of subzero mornings. Those mornings I felt like this was a genius plan, taking a break. But then, other days I had to appease myself with "easy" runs with some of our male teammates, which are always painful. And now, after 2 months of running nearly everyday with a couple of hard days a week in there, I'm convinced that I'm totally out of shape. So, in my crazy runner way, I guess I'm over this whole break thing! It sounded good in theory. But I must admit, I did enjoy a few guilt free mornings curled up in bed when it was -12 degrees!

Now I'm bracing myself for kicking it back into gear. Ouch!

Getting Back Into It

At the end of November I got into a car accident. Good passenger side was hit and I was ok. Bad news...I lost my car. I traveled to North Carolina for Club Cross, but couldn't compete.

I had a rough go at the Chicago Marathon in September. I needed a 2:46 to qualify for the trials and ended up running a 2:49. The game plan was to turn around and run the Houston Marathon at the end of January. When I was still in physical therapy the first week of January, I knew that Houston was going to be a no go.

I'm done with all my chiropractic treatments and I'm done with physical therapy. I was able to start running again at the beginning of January. I'm so happy to be able to run again. Right now I'm putting in some base work to build my mileage back up.

I don't have a spring marathon on the schedule right now, but have a few possibilities in mind. I'm going to do Gate River in March. I'm not sure that I'll be in great shape by then, but I feel really good and am excited to get back to racing again.