Tuesday, August 31, 2010

8/31/10 - Run Bike Run

15 minute bike to the park
30 minutes (4-miles) running around park
15 minute bike back home

Monday, August 30, 2010

8/30/10 AM Bike-Run-Bike

15 minute bike (3.25 miles)
30:00 run (4.1 miles)
15 minute bike (3.5 miles)

Nothing too heavy today. Just easy bike over to the park, a loop run, and easy bike back. I hoped to make it back in time to get core work in with Kenyan Way group, but I missed it...will have to do that this afternoon.

Achilles was not all that comfortable today. We'll see how it feels for 30 more minutes this afternoon. This will be my only 2-a-day running-wise....30 minutes and 30 minutes.

I'm definitely outta shape. UGH! Gonna be a long road back, but the sooner I start on it....

Sunday, August 29, 2010

8/29/10 - Reverse Duathalon again

3+ mile bike
7 mile run
7+ mile bike

The plan was to meet Sean and RJ @ 7:30 at the Tennis Center, so I headed out and took the 15 minute ride over to the park.

Did a loop and a mile with Sean and RJ, with the Achilles actually feeling a little less than comfortable the whole time...thinking I'd be done for the day, I just turned back a half mile into the 2nd loop of the park to get 4 miles/30 minutes. Chatted with Gerardo and Bill while I stretched, and decided to add in another loop with Bill. As we started, we ran back into Sean and RJ, so we joined them, and I completed another loop to make 7 miles total.

I biked back home, then rode over to a store to get some Gatorade at a local convenience store, all in the name of more work, yet loosening up the legs. Probably 1:45 total out between the two. Good day of work.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

8/28/10 Kenyan Way run, 6.5-ish Miles

20-minutes cycling
6.5 Miles running...48:30
32-minutes cycling

What I like to call a reverse duathalon. :-)

I wanted to take off with the group for the Saturday run, even though I knew everyone was doing a longer run, was just nice to actually get out the door with the group. First 2 miles were uncomfortable to some degree. At the first water stop, I let the 3-hour group go back by me, stayed and stretched, then ran about a mile and a half with Jace, before turning around and wrapping up the run and jumping back on the bike.

Weather was awesome.

Overall, a great workout today.

Friday, August 27, 2010

8/27/10 - Off Day

No run today.

Not the way it was planned. I was going to get up and ride for 30-45 minutes, then run 30 minutes. Had the alarm set for 5 AM...I awoke at 4 to use the little boys room. Crawled back into bed, and the alarm did indeed go off at 5...I just didn't wake up to it till about 3 minutes before 6 AM. UGH! So, I got ready for work and headed out. Was a bummer, as I was feeling it, sorta, but might have been a good thing. The increased activity this week, along with work, has taken it's toll, and I'm tired.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

8/26/10 - AM Cycling

1-hour of cycling

Rode to the Memorial Park Picnic Loop and did loops. I don't know how fast I really went, but I'm sure I could figure it out...if I really sat down to do it. I'm closer to 15 mph than to 20...maybe somewhere between 16-17 mph. The main goal is to ride hard for the 30 minutes at the park.

Planned an evening run, but it just didn't work out like I'd hoped. Instead, I vegged, then showered and crashed...I was wiped out.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

8/25/10 Easy Running and Biking

30 minutes of running around the Bayou
30 minutes of cycling around the Bayou

Nothing too much to report except that it felt awesome.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

8/24/10 AM Bike Ride - 1:07

14+ miles

Rode easy over to the Picnic Loop @ Memorial and did my best to "hammer" out some loops out there. I ended up making (I think) 8 circuits of the 1.15 mile loop, totaling around 9.2 miles in about 32 minutes, then cruised on back home. I would love to be able to get a run in this evening, but work calls in the evening, so that won't happen. But, it was a good test of how it would feel to get on the bike. That's two days in a row of cycling, as I did about 8 miles of cycling on Sunday with a couple of friends.

Monday, August 23, 2010

8/23/10 - Easy 4 Miles

4 Miles
15:36 out
14:53 back

Just an easy run to the Crestwood water fountain, followed by a chat w/Coach. Never fails that talking for a bit re-fires confidence when it's needed the most.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

8/22/10 Easy Run

2 miles

I only ran a little because I spent a good amount of time in the gym today. I didn't do anything with heavy weights... just stuff I could do high reps with. After that, I stepped out and ran a little...a little discomfort to begin with, but nothing too bad. I stopped more cause it was 100 degrees, 3PM and I had already done some leg work.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

8/21/10 Easy Run

4 miles

This was the first time I'd run in the morning like this in a long time, and boy did my Achilleses tell me that was the case. WHEW! I made it down the 2-mile water stop in 17:30...yes, folks, that's 8:45/mi. But, yeah buddy... I negative split the run, making it back in 16:30.

So, the run was good on the 2nd half. After stopping and talking with Sean at the water station, I started back, and the legs were feeling a little better, but I certainly didn't want to force the issue, so to speak. It was the first run after EPAT on Thursday...so, I expected to not feel great. All in all, though, a good day.

Friday, August 20, 2010

8/20/10 - No Run

Instructed by Doc to not run till Saturday.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

8/19/10 EPAT

No Running...EPAT. Painful. But, seems worthwhile and worth it.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

8/18/10 - Easy Run

2 Miles
7:35, 6:57

If one good thing came out of this run, it's the reminder of how easy it is on my body to do 7-minute pace. I'm definitely out of shape, though, and have put on a el-bee (lb) or two. I'm not the most disciplined eater in the world, so I've decided to cut out fast foods and sodas for the most part. I'm not quite going to the extreme I did last year about this time, where I went "sugarless" for 3 weeks, and lost 7-8 lbs in that time. Although, with the reduced running load, I may need to move to that. Right now, I just need to keep things under control while I heal and go through therapy.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

8/17/10 - Thoughts on Therapy Future

After yesterday's run, I thought more about something I'd been considering, but had to decide whether I could afford to do it. Currently, I'm doing a form of therapy that seems to be helping called Active Release Therapy...ART for short. It's a certified method of manipulating with hands and other tools the soft tissue that seems to be damaged. It seems like it's geared towards areas where scar tissue has developed. Just like a scar on top of the skin, the scab tends to tighten up the skin around it, then when the scab is removed, you generally find that the skin underneath it has healed and it goes back to normal, leaving perhaps a little scar that really only indicates where the "injury" occurred.

I've sorta pictured that to be the same case with my Achilles. I injured it 5 or 6 years ago, which caused immediate damage to which my body quickly went to work at repairing. It did, but the scar tissue, or scab remains. Now, in breaking it up with the tools Dr. Leist has been using, it's slowly but surely gaining flexibility as the scab is removed.

The portion I'm considering now is EPAT, which I'm not sure what it all stands for, but is essentially electroshock therapy to the affected area. I know Coach has used this to a degree, and it does work faster...it's just a little more expensive, which is where the dilemma comes in. The number of treatments is fewer, but it's more per visit. In the spirit of healing, however, I have decided to give it a go.

Dr. Leist has really shown he knows what he's doing and is talking about, so I'm ready, but nervous. The nervousness, I think, comes from the unknown discomfort that will come from it. It also seems to be from the idea that...wow...it won't be long, if all goes well, till I'm ready to ramp back up again. In looking over my Coach's blog, I see he did 21 miles over the weekend, and man am I ready to get back there. But after going essentially from late March through early June of pounding the miles, and now going all of June and July, and at least all of August being WAY down on mileage, I find myself nervous because 100-mile weeks are no longer "uncharted territory." I've been there and know what it feels like. I'm ready, but anxious.

So, my first EPAT session is Thursday...it will be the electoshock, as well as ART, followed by the exercises and stretches, then I'm done. Once-a-week for a few weeks, and ideally, I'm done with that and ready to go again. By early/mid-September, the mileage could start piling back on. Just the thought of getting back into the swing of things makes my heart jump a little as I type that out. I can't help but smile and just be ready to hammer it out again... a little smarter...a little wiser...yet exponentially more determined. I've started to see the beginnings of what my body can handle and how to strengthen so it can handle that and more. Am I ready for it?

You bet I am.

Monday, August 16, 2010

8/16/10 - Easy Run

I got out and just did 25 minutes of running including 2 1/4 loops of the Cloverleaf. Chatted with Coach a bit, finished up my run and called it a night.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Saturday, August 14, 2010

8/14/10 - No REAL Run

Just outside running around w/my nephew and brother. Felt good, but definitely needed some stretching after.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

8/12/10 - Easy 30 minute run

15:02 out
15:01 back

Ran along bayou down to just near the skate park. I did my stretching and exercises there and headed back. Nothing too intense and nothing too painful.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

8/10/10 - ART

Went for my 2nd treatment on Tuesday. Man, I tell ya, that therapy can get a little painful, but I know it's a good thing, and I know it's going to work. No pain, no gain, right?

No running...just therapy.

Monday, August 9, 2010

8/9/10 - Easy Run...maybe overdid it Today

42:53 out and back
21:13 out
21:40 back

After several days of 3-4 miles of running, it was foolish of me to go about 6, even if at an easy pace. Headed up Blossom, down Crestwood to Memorial, then when I hit the park, the mile to the Tennis Center for water and stretching, then back along the same route.

Maybe I was trying to run too fast back. Perhaps, my desire to negative split the run got the better of me, but on the run back home, I definitely had to slow up down Blossom. The discomfort was there... was nearing the pain threshold. If I was running a longer run, it was enough that I'd have cut the run short. But, knowing I was nearing home and only had about a mile or so to go, I just toughed it out at a slower pace.

I tried not to be too disheartened by that, as I'd had several good running days here. Also, therapy on Tuesday afternoon. So, I'm trying to remain optimistic...especially when you put things in a particular perspective...like below...

Sunday, August 8, 2010

8/8/10 - Easy Running...feeling a little better each day

I ran about 20 minutes with my brother today, as he is working himself back into running shape after some knee problems late last year and early this year. After finishing that up, at maybe 12-minute pace, I headed out for 10-minutes out and back. It actually turned out to be 10-minutes out and 9:28 back. Did my exercises and stretches right after the run. We ran at about 11 am, which made for some rough conditions, but felt good.

We'll see when I meet with the Doc on Tuesday if the Achilles has gotten worse or if it shows some improvement. It's been a week since that first treatment, so I'm not expecting there to be much change in what he sees, but there is definitely a change in what I'm feeling.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

8/7/10 - Easy Out and Back Run

13:07 out
12:28 back

From my brother's place, just ran out to a corner where I stopped and stretched on the curb. Then headed back and felt pretty darn good. Nowhere near 100%, but the stretches and exercises and use of the foam roller really felt good.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Thursday, August 5, 2010

8/5/10 - Another easy Run...3.8 miles

Down to Crestwood water fountain and back.
Out - 13:49
Back - 13:14
Total - 27:03

I felt like changing up my normal scenery a little, so rather than running on the undulating road that is Memorial to get to the park, I just headed up to Blossom to Crestwood, left to the water fountain at the corner of Crestwood and Memorial, then back the same route. It's about 1.85 miles to go that way, so roughly 3.8 miles.

The Achilles was definitely on it's better behavior today compared to what it had been over the last few weeks. I felt good heading down there and back. Still using Saturday as my reference point, it was good to get the whole run without this increasing pain that gets to a point where I have to stop. All in all, a good run.

I'll follow this up with a run on Saturday, Sunday and Monday before my next appointment. I'll be in Dallas Saturday all day and Sunday, so I need to be very disciplined to get my exercises done there.

Brick by brick, my friends. Brick by brick...

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

8/3/10 - Easy 3 Miles...easing back in...

3 Miles
7:20, 6:47, 6:47

On Monday, I got some recommendations and called up the MultiSport Health Center and got a 3:30 appt. All the nerves I felt were unfounded, as Dr. Leist came in, talked with me, asked me questions about the pain, when, where, how, etc. He took a look at my Achilles, did some "tests" to test strength, balance, flexibility and made his assessment. Long and short, it's going to require some Active Release Therapy (ART), exercises on my part, and (my favorite part) to keep running.

After therapy and stretching, he told me to run 2-3 miles, especially since that was the pain threshold it seemed my last time out running, a couple of times between visits. My next appt was scheduled for Friday, but I had to move it to the following week on Tuesday @ 3:30.

So, I got out this afternoon in the blazing heat for 3 easy miles. So that I didn't strand myself if the pain set in while out on the run, I opted against an out and back route, and just did the 1-mile loop right outside my place. I focused on, as odd as this sounds, regardless of discomfort, maintaining my stride as close to normal as possible. Didn't want to change footstrike, stride length, arm motion, etc. I wanted to run as normal as possible, so that if there was great discomfort or pain, I'd be able to accurately report back.

All in all, the discomfort was present, but not unbearable. I tried to put it in terms of my 2-a-days... would I be able to run 7-8-miles like this? The answer was definitely yes. It wouldn't have been fun to run feeling that way, but compared to Saturday, it was a pure delight to get 3-miles without it increasing into full-fledged PAIN.

I got in some stretching before having to head out the door for a long night at J # 2, where I was on my feet all day and fortunately felt no after-effects.

I know this is only one run, and I've only had one therapy session, but boy does this make the outlook seem just a little brighter. I can tell you that my habits, my attitude towards my running and towards the trials have all taken a hit. I'm having trouble getting my body back into the routine of being up early to do things...even though I'm not doing what I was before (running), I need to at least maintain the habit.

My mission this week is to get my body back into that routine. It won't be long till I'm able to get back to 2-a-day running, even if it's not 15-17-miles/day, but when I am cleared to start ramping up mileage, I'm going to start with 4 and 4, 5 and 5, 6 and 6 and so on until I'm back up to 8 and 8 regularly. To do that, though, my sleeping and other actions need to be in line with it.

Here's to hoping....

Monday, August 2, 2010

8/2/10 - Visit to MultiSport Health Center

First Doc visit this afternoon, and he started Active Release Treatment. The treatment was pretty easy to handle most of the way through... but, as expected, there were parts of pretty good discomfort/pain. Nothing I can't handle though... at least, I say that now. :-)

Stretching and exercises after, and the recommendation that this week to run only 2-3 times, but after, the running can resume.

Hope? You better believe it. I see a light at the end of this tunnel of Achilles pain... I feel pretty certain, after today's visit, that it's not a train....

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Tough Week Behind...Big Week Ahead

So, I haven't actually made an appointment, but this week will definitely see either a Dr visit, or at the very least, getting a Doc appt scheduled. Another tough week of training "climaxed", so to speak on Saturday when I actually looked forward to the idea of attempting a run over an hour...something I hadn't been able to do in a week and a half. As Friday came, the decision I made for Saturday was to a do a mini-tri. I started out for about 250-300m in the pool (took me a long time, as I'm not a strong swimmer in the least, and stopping at the end of each swim across my apt pool). I followed that with a quick change in the fitness center and hopping on a stationary bike for 30 minutes, with 5 minutes thrown in there of a decent intensity. Finally, again, a quick change and heading out for 45 minutes of running. The idea was that a little loosening of the legs and Achilles, while not really straining it might do me some good on the run. I knew I wouldn't be able to run long, but wanted the 1:30+ of actual work.

When the running got going, though, it drove home the final nail in the decision to make some changes on my plans. I could only make it about 2 miles before having to stop, stretch and let the pain subside, before going again for another 2 miles and repeating the process. I only made a 6.5 mile run in those 45 minutes. As I described to my parents, it's frustrating that I couldn't even get to the point of being tired on my run.

So, changes to make....over the last few weeks, I've put a lot of pressure on myself to get healthy so I could get on to a sustainable training schedule in preparation for Twin Cities. Now, facing 9 weeks to race day, I realized that it was all but over for this race. As I completed the run, I walked inside, did some stretching again, and pretty much admitted to myself that Twin Cities is not going to happen. I will be scheduling an appointment with a doctor to take a look at the Achilles this week.

Keeping in mind that the goal remains the same, in order to get the volume back, I need to heal. And in order to heal fully, I need some professional input and some time off. We'll see what happens after the visit...