Monday, Biked with the kid out here in Sessums. Slightly cooler today, about 55°F. I had Joseph do a couple of tempo type runs or the last couple of weeks, but after watching him, realized that he needed to work on his form and foot turnover. So, changing that up for a bit. Today, I had him do a mix of 200s and 400s with about the same distance of each jogged after each. For this first day back doing this type of thing, he kept the number of reps down and concentrated on form and even pacing. He did 2 X 200m, 4 X 400m, 4 X 200m, and finished with a 400m (with warmup and cool down). Averaged 32-32 for 200s and 1:10 for 400s (1:08-1:11). All in all pretty good day. Form looked good. Foot speed was nice and steady.
Tuesday, joined Will Kallfelz, Nick Pettit, Lucas Muniz, and Joseph for a run on the South Farm gravel and hills. Another nice day, still hanging out about 55°F. Calf has been feeling good, so figured I would run again today, maybe even faster? But, no, kept it pretty slow. It really was not long before I felt some tightness in my calf. Has felt fine until I hit the gravel out here. Seems like whenever I come out here lately, my calf gets sore again. Maybe it has healed up too tight, or something to that effect, and the hills probably don’t help. Actually, in my opinion, running on dirt and gravel, which may be somewhat softer than paved roads, is in some ways harder on your body than running on paved roads. A lot of folks attribute their shin splints to running on hard surfaces, but I think that is pretty much a crock of shit. Personally. I have been running for at least 40 years, and much of it has been on paved roads. In my 20s, I would often hit 100+ miles a week. Really, have not ever had issues with shin splints. I think its more about gradually upping mileage, warming up, and having decent running form. On the other hand, when you run on softer surfaces, I think it absorbs the footfall more, especially with cushioned shoes, and ends up straining the calf muscles more. The hills don’t help either, but the hills on paved roads seem to hurt less. Well, anyway, I got in about 4.5 miles, pretty slow. I meandered about with Nick and we talked about crazy stuff. The other guys did 7 or so. Got home and did pushups, militaries, and curls. Nothing crazy. Calf was sore though. Should be alright in a few days. Haha. And so it goes!
Wednesday, I did not run today. Joseph got in an easy run. I think he may run in a Glow run on the MSU campus tomorrow night, using the run as a tempo. Several of our Starkville Striders are planning on running. I am not. I know if I do, I will push it, and regret it afterward! Joseph is only going because the other guys are, and we don’t get to do many races where several of the guys show up.
Thursday, Showed up at the Glow Run at about 6 PM, and Joseph registered for the race. Lots of brightly clad folks. Some other guys in our group showed to run including Lucas, Brent, Max, Zach, and Thomas. A friend of Zach’s, Brooks, decided he wanted to join our Starkville Striders club as well. John Mooney showed up too, but was too late to register.
Race start was scheduled for 7 PM, so they all got in a warmup run and loosened up. Headed to the start area, but the race folks decided to run the mile fun run first. A bad omen. Anyway, started the 5k at around 7:30. So much for the well timed warmup! Joseph and Lucas are both in pretty shape just from running base stuff this winter, with Lucas probably in a little better shape at the moment, as Joseph finished up some fairly intensive stuff about 1 month ago, then basically did no running or only limited running for 2 weeks. Just getting back into it. First good workout was Monday. Either way, I figured they would both break 17 minutes, and I figured Brent and Thomas, and maybe Zach would break 18. Well, night runs are weird, especially when they don’t block traffic. Either you keep up with the cop car, or you may not know where to go. And, they don’t block traffic for the MSU runs. Also, sometimes the lead car stops to temporarily block traffic, and as a runner, you may have to go around the car, sometimes running down the middle of the road between cars (this happened to me last year). I told Joseph to hang with Lucas, or if Lucas did not run fast, follow the lead car. Joseph is fairly blind and has some astigmatism, like I do. He ran out of contact lens and did not run in his glasses either. So, not good. Well, I hear that he and Lucas ran together for a while, then Joseph dropped just a bit, with Lucas just ahead. Joseph said at some point, Lucas was just a few yards ahead, but he lost sight of him after the lead car did some crazy stop or another at some junction. Lucas apparently knew the route, so no problem. Joseph did not see where Lucas went and was confused by multiple cop cars. He was also told by someone to go the wrong way. Anyway, he ended up in a parking lot with no idea of where to go. Eventually, the other guys from our group showed up where they saw him just standing there waving his arms. Unfortunately, none of them knew where to go either. Finally, after walking around for a while, they saw some other people and figured it out. At that point, the race was completely meaningless to everyone in our group, except for Lucas, who knew the route. Lucas ended up winning the race handily with a time of 16:41, a PR for him. Joseph, Brent, and Thomas all showed up at about the 20 minute mark with Thomas in 2nd, Brent 3rd, and Joseph 4th. Obviously, this time meant nothing, as they are all minutes faster than this. In fact, Joseph was running 20 flat at 12 years old. Basically, they just jogged in. The other guys followed them. Even so, the top seven finishers were Starkville Striders even though all of them except for Lucas ran extra and were completely lost. Overall, it was good to see Lucas do well, but I wish I had not brought Joseph. I figured this race would not be done well, as I have been to too many similar ones. Charity races like this tend to be pretty bad. Waste of a workout day and a very poorly organized race. Lucky that nobody got run over. Despite all this, they all had a good time. Joseph enjoyed running and hanging with the other guys. They are all goofballs, so they can pretty much enjoy anything.
Friday, I got up in the morn and did a workout of sorts. Mostly pushups and curls. A few pullups. Joseph did a short easy run after lunch.
Saturday, Chick Fill A sponsored a 10k and 5K this morn with the winning prize for each being a free dinner for basically every week in the year or close to it. We did not go, but some of our guys went. This was a newly certified course, which is nice. Lucas, who won the 5k two nights earlier, was hoping to win this 10k too. And really, the only people around this area who can even run under 36 minutes are members of the MSU track team (who don’t usually do local races), Robert Scribner (a former MSU runner turned professional who would probably break 30 minutes), and Joseph who was running low to mid 34’s last year as a junior in high school, and Lucas. The only one of those people in the race was Lucas, so basically, he knew some free lunches were coming his way!! Lucas easily won the race with a 34:12, which was a huge PR for him. Pretty good, especially considering he had just run a 16:41 two night before! Good job. John Mooney, another one of our Striders, also did well, coming in 2nd in the 5k with his time in the low 18’s! Very sweet! John is a super freak triathlete, so running is just part of his bag. Lucas said this race was very well done with lots of support along the way. No questions about where to go. I wish the other Striders would have skipped the Glowrun and done this one instead! Ah well.
While they were running this morn, I was working out. Got in some bench, pushups, curls, pullups and crunches. Later, Joseph and I headed out to the Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge. Got there at 3 pm, and we took off. There were a ton out people out there today hiking, fishing, biking, lying in hammocks, and just hangings out! Beautiful day with temps in the low 70’s, so why not! Anyway, we got going. Joseph did not sleep well last night and it was obvious. His face had that puffy tired look. Even so, too pretty to not go. I rode along with him on my bike as he did 10 miles, 5 miles out and back. Stopped for water at the halfway point, and he also stretched just a bit. Overall, he averaged right at 5:50 per mile today. Not where he was 6 weeks ago, but not bad at all for right now! Got back to the truck where we found Brent and Max lounging in the back of Brent’s car. Jokers showed up a few minutes later than us. They ran for about 50 minutes. We also saw John Mooney and Brian Laird, who were biking. I put my bike up, and jogged a couple of miles myself. Calf still sore from running on the farm the other day. I played with various ways of running before finally settling on the “Steve Shaffer shuffle”. This is more hip oriented, and I don’t have to lift my legs as high. A little easier on my calf. It actually felt better as I went along and I picked it up to 6:30 mile pace. Still sore though.