Running on a budget

I forgot to mention that on Memorial Day (observed) when I did my 11 miler, I ran across three pennies in different locations which I stopped and pocketed. Today I found another one. Either some school kids are really loose with their lunch money or we have a generous community that appreciates the cost of marathon race entries and is doing all it can to support us under-sponsored runners.

I did a ladder of repeats Wednesday at the track: 3x400, 2x600 and 1x400. Not much for distance but I'm just playing right now, waiting for Runner Susan to catch up. She has a Chicago training plan which we'll have to monitor. This morning I went out for four miles allegedly at tempo pace.

Went to my third high school graduation yesterday (none of which have been my own). Attended both of my boys' special days and yesterday' Colonial HS graduation. I had media-tending duty after hyping the Honorary Diploma that was being presented posthumously to the family of a former student - who never graduated - because he dropped out to join the Marines and go fight in Vietnam back in 1966. He was KIA and is one of 23 Floridians to ever receive the Congressional Medal of Honor.

It was the least we could do to commemorate his service to country by making a big deal of him before an arena packed with 6,000 high school seniors and their families. A full dress Marine Corps honor guard attended to accentuate the recognition. The place was awash with applause when the aged uncle of Cpl. Smedley came up the stairs to represent the family. Gave me goosebumps.


Redemption of a sort

It was a cool 66 out there at 6 a.m. so I laced up to put yesterday's tragedy in my rear view. I opted to Galloway over Ironman so went out for an 11 x 1 mile jog. Every mile I walked a minute and it all came out to my satisfaction. My legs felt much better.

Once home I stretched, showered and slipped back into bed for an extra hour of sleep. When Mrs. T woke up she noticed I had been out of bed for a little while and asked how long. I said, "Eleven miles worth."

"Really?" she replied. She barely noticed.

Fly your flag today. Make sure it's facing the right way if hung. Flag Police are out with radar.


Forgive me

Forgive me fathers, mothers, brothers and sisters for I have failed. This morning's run was about as wee-wee poor as it has ever been. Why? Let me whine. Please!
  • It was brutally humid after raining last night for the first time in a month
  • It was mid- to upper-70s
  • I had more dental work earlier in the week
  • I had Week #2 of the natives-are-restless protest against the district because of the secondary school start times flip (and I do mean protest; as in 100 marching on the district office and 65 more walking out of classes at one high school)
  • I ran intervals for the first time since February on Tuesday. They felt good but I didn't do as many as I planned.
  • Thursday's run was a sled ride through shallow water
  • I am an old man
  • I have been waking up at 4 a.m. every day and having to "re-run" my runs in my head to get back to sleep for a short spell
  • Runner Susan is using voodoo again
That's about it for now. If I think of any more complaints I will spare you until I need them again. If I had run the Trees 5K yesterday, that would have been an excellent excuse; but I didn't.

Today was supposed to be a roll-back 10-11 miler. Down 2-3 miles from last week. How could that be hard? Augh! I was walking by mile 3. I turned in to do just six for the day and finished with four walk breaks and a 1:10 time. I was so dead in the legs.

So I needed a pick-me-up; two in fact. I went to Starbucks for a Grande Americano. That helped. Then I went to Publix to sit for a free blood pressure test. With West Point son dealing with high blood pressure (170/110!!!) and learning my dad's been on BP meds for 35 years, I felt the urge to check mine. It had been six months or so. I wasn't worried. Just curious.

Pump me up. Pinch it. Let it out. Aghhhhh. 104/59. Boy was that nice. About as low as mine has ever been. Question: Doctor, do blood pressure readings typically read lower after exercise?


Making the most of May

Looking back at history I have been a lousy May runner. It always seems to be a slacker time of year for me. Not this year. I am on pace to top 100 miles of running after my 13.5 miler this morning. I usually do not put down that many miles unless I am in serious training for something. Nada. Just determined to maintain a higher long run base level.

Today was mid 70s, overcast and humid. There were four new runners at the Orlando Runners Club meeting this morning. 7 a.m. Park Avenue. Three were local and one was a visitor from Ft. Collins, CO. She was fast and looking to run 18 miles today. Ha! Well we put her with Dave who could run with her. She had a soggy piece of paper with directions in case she got lost. She was nice and friendly so everybody helped out.

I veered off the course after nine miles taking a left instead of a right to make sure I had no choice but going the distance I had set out to run. I was resigned to doing some run/walk sequencing because of the heat and for trying to run with Ms. Ft. Collins for a while. I survived. With just one run during the week last week, I was happy to get it done.

Time to put in some speed work this week, just to remember how I like it. Maybe a ladder up and down.

I am having doze-off visions of running new routes in Rhode Island this July/August. I arrive too late for the Blessing of the Fleet 10 Miler but there's a 4-mile run to look forward to. (Did I write about this already? It seems I did).

Anyway, school is winding down. Just a couple more weeks. We have had our share of controversy with $33 million in budget cuts set for next year. One remedy has been to flip the start time of middle and high schools so that the middles start at 7:30 and the highs at 9:30. WE can cut out 37 buses, drivers, fuel and maintenance with the move.

Needless to say, the natives are very restless. What time does high school start where you live? I am thinking the high schoolers will benefit from sleeping later, given that they stay up later.


More of the same

Since I dialed back in April I have allowed myself to heal and recover. I highly recommend it.

This was the first week since early March that I topped 20 miles for the week. I pulled off a 5 a 6 and a 13 (I found a penny running this morning). It was good to get those miles in because summer heat is already upon us and I need to stay on top of that wave so my endurance can hold its own and not get beaten down. A tough challenge; I assure you.

I have made my hotel reservations for Chicago and flight reservations for Rhode Island vacation. The last travel task is to book flights to Chicago.

My weight has been an issue here in Thin Trade Land. I remember in 2006 for the Miami Marathon I weighed 150. A year ago I was around 155 maybe. These days it's either side of 160. I know if I cut out a few indulgent items in my diet it would get better but I am not hurting by it and certainly not looking anything close to portly. I'll let it ride until summer when Chicago training gets serious.

I hope to run (with/into) Jeanne, Susie, formerly of Finally Running fame, and Peter of DC Spinster fame over the Fourth. That could be worth some extended blogging with photos.


Show me the money

The weather outside is just about perfect for running. I only got one run in last week but my legs felt remarkably good after going six miles Wednesday morning. Today it took too long for the Garmin to find satellites (is that because I have all my runs since December stored in the Garmin?) and the crowd took off and got about a half mile ahead of me before I could move.

I caught up to the slowest trio of runners three times. Once when they took a water break, again after I stopped to walk and talk with an old friend out walking her dog; and finally after they took a shortcut and I caught them again.

I went 12.5 miles this morning just to see if I could. I could. Felt good. I think I will start banking some long runs before I start training for Chicago. The fasties I see on Sundays are already doing 20 milers for a race in July. That's some serious base.

Show me the money!! Okay. You know how when you run, invariably you are going to see some loose change lying on the road. I mean, it happens, right? It does to me all the time. My question to you --- Do you stop to pick up loose change?

A. 0-50% of the time
B. 50-90% of the time
C 90-99% of the time
D. Every time!