Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Game Reset

I'd love to say that the reason I haven't posted anything in nearly three full months is that my computer went haywire, I lost the password to my blog account and gave up on writing -- all the while diligently keeping up with my marathon training plan.

At least part of that is true ...

I wrote what I felt to be an particularly amusing entry a week after my last post (when I laugh that much while writing something, it's usually to make up for all the people who won't laugh while reading it), only to have it disappear into oblivion. 

Now, in my work life I've become quite accustomed to having to respond to such situations by recreating the entire piece, usually within a five-minute span before deadline. 

But since this wasn't anything directly related to work, I relished the chance to walk away and not think about it. Ever again.

And by ever, I mean three months.

So here I am back to it, new password in hand, because I have indeed kept running -- but not nearly as much as I'd intended when I started this blog.

At this point on the calendar, I was supposed to be running 12 miles a week, with at least one 10K run a week. 

In reality, I've run 12 miles for the month of March. 

Cue the crickets.

It's not for lack of wanting to go out and run, but a number of factors arose that I simply didn't count on when mapping out the training.

One, in previous years, I could just load the girl up in the jogging stroller and take off whenever I wanted. Having two kids has proven to be much more tricky as either my wife has to be home to watch one while I take the other out, or I have to wait until after the kids are in bed to get my miles in.

The first problem with waiting for bedtime is that, prior to Daylight Savings Time (a.k.a. the official start of the season for runners everywhere),  I have to resort to being that guy -- you know, the creepy, wheezing jogger who roams dark alleys and roadways after dark that everyone gives a wide berth as he passes by.

With this fully in mind, I try to be as unassuming and non-threatening as possible during these night-time jaunts. For starters, it helps immensely that I am so slow. I think it's hard to feel threatened by a guy who couldn't chase you down if both of your legs were broken.

For a time, I also (this it the stuff that goes through my mind as I run, I swear) tried to enhance that slowness, by taking on a bit of a limp. At the end of the day (no pun intended), I decided the limp made the whole much more creepy, so I dropped it altogether.

It's of great concern to me not to take anyone by surprise, especially anyone taking their trash cans out to the sidewalk or walking out to their cars as I run past. So whenever I see such individuals, I start kind of shuffling my feet against the concrete to give an extra warning of oncoming traffic. Between the shuffling, the wheezing and the limping, it's become quite the spectacle, which is why it's probably good it's dark outside.

I also wear an old yellow Oakland A's ballcap during my night runs, because A) no one finds the color yellow, or the Oakland A's for that matter, threatening in the least bit, and B) (Because for as much as I'm trying not to be creepy, I'm way more creeped out by everyone else who happens to be out and about after dark), no one is going to beat up a guy with glasses and a yellow hat on. Right?

The second problem is that sometime in the last three months, a troll has taken up residence in our couch. His name is Carl.

He doesn't bother us too much, but he has this nasty habit of latching on to my feet as soon as the kids are in bed. Carl is a pretty heavy troll (must be the dreadlocks) and he only lets go for ice cream trips or the ordering of a pizza. He is seriously against any physical activity, especially running ... and jumping jacks, but that's neither here nor there, because I hate jumping jacks.

Since Carl has taken up residence, I've dropped off on my running and subsequently gained about 10 pounds. 

All is not lost, however. With Daylight Savings Time, I've been able to get out more for runs and the time I've put in so far this year has me running a slight bit faster than I was last year at this time. 

So I'll just keep plugging away at it. I see the 10K as ultimately doable in June, one way or another.

The marathon, well, we'll see. I'll keep at it, I'll keep writing the blog, and if the marathon waits until next year, it waits until next year. But the plan for now is November. 
I am training for a 10K in June and a marathon in November. I’m running twice a week ... in that semi-regular sort of way. Eventually, I will  ramp up the training routine until I’m running about 22 miles a week in June. From there I’ll launch into marathon training.

Stats for the week : Baseline 5K: 32:13. Baseline 10K: --. Best time of the week (or since I last wrote): 30:37 (5K). Best overall time: 26:57 (5K, June 7, 2009); -:-- (10K). Miles within the last week: 6.2. Total miles for 2010: 37.0.  Total miles since 2008: 333.7

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