Friday, May 30, 2014

Baptisim Of Fire

I said from the get go{ or in my case is that Geico????} Thursdays season opener would be a quote" baptisim of fire" post race my running gear is still smoldering......
Now while Thursday was my 2014 Outdoor season opener it wasn't my "first rodeo" and despite a status of entries that  had 3 sub 4.00 and 5 4 flat times i know that runners tend to "embelish" their times,that said I was under no illusion that  this was going to be a "baptisim of fire" for me,the question was did I go for broke and try and hang w/ the big dogs or play safe and work w/ the one 4.29 and other 2 4.30 guys?????

For once I arrived at Icahn w/ oodles of time to spare,thanks in part to scheduling a day off from work and being able to cop the 1.30pm Megabus out of Philly to midtown,and while i may not be able to take off the first three Tuesday Nite Speed Series races{I am off next Thursday for #3 of the Twilight Series and #4 of the Tuesday Nite Speed Series} I think the 1.30pm bus is the way to go,we arrived in midtown Manhattan by 4.05pm roughly 2.5 hiurs after leaving Philly as advertised,the problem w/ the 2.30pm bus is the always infamous Lincoln Tunnel,I've made the ride up to NYC more times than I care to remember where I've made great time untill the Lincoln Tunnel and than the proverbial shit has hit the fan and while the train would avoid that pratfall the difference is it's roughly $25 one way from 30th St to Penn Station where as the bus can be as cheap as $6 but given the 1.30pm got there w/ time to kill maybe I'll keep taking that even on the days I work....ho hum I guess I'll just have to leave early.........what a wrench eh???

I took my time getting to Randall's Island and still got there by 5.15pm,as it would turn out 2 hours b4 race time but I'd rather sit and relax in the stands than be stuck in traffic entering the Lincoln Tunnel b4 I even reach midtown muchless walk over to the #6 stop on 33rd and take the #6 to 103rd St and then walk over the footbridge onto Randall's Island or take the express to #125th St and then the bus to Icahn Stadium.
Shot the proverbial w/ Peter Brady in the stands Peter was one of the 4.00 guys in the field we met two years ago at Icahn in one of the Tuesday Nite Speed Series races and pretty much run into eachother in New York races as we both run 800m and 1,500m.
By 6.30pm I felt duty bound to warm up,opting for the soccer field next to the track and not the track it's self as the 400m Hurdles was first up plus the astroturf would provide a softer surface to run on even though the mondo tack at Icahn is one of the nicer track surfaces to run on.
I waited till the women's 1,500m runners went through the bell b4 stripping down to race gear,the wind off the East River down the back straight can be chilly....even at the end of May but as I joked w/ Mark Williams pre race "we'll all be bitching about the heat in North Carolina in seven weeks time!!"

Two no shows from the 15 man field but I was asigned #15 which put me on the outside of the line up,fine by me as it would allow me a clear run down the back straight.
I saw 48 seconds at the finish line and heard 65 seconds for the opening 400m,both splits were a little ahead of where I thought I might be,I was hanging off the back of the chase group w/ at least two runners behind me,one of whom was the other 4.30 guy{one of the two no shows was the other 4.30 runner} but feeling ok.
1.58 at 700m a 1.10 split and still feeling good the two runners ahead of me were not getting away from me and not leaving me in the dreaded "no man's land",however coming off the bottom turn the other 4.30 runner went by me and kept going,oh to have been able to go w/ him.....
3.13 at the bell a 75 second lap at this point I was still on pace for a decent time but try as I might over the final 400m I couldn't find any more leg turnover or knee lift as I crossed the line in 4.31.50 off a disappointing final lap of 78 seconds.

So ten weeks since I closed the Indoor season in 4.32.58 I opened the Outdoor season in 4.31.50..... hardly the return on my investment I was looking for,but I take heart from my 2012 Outdoor season opener over 800m at Swarthmore where I had loftier expectations than a season opening 2.11.7 b4 rebounding 11 weeks later at Nationals in Lisle w/ a silver in the 800m in 2.06.1.
While I'm disappointed w/ my time last nite in fairness I wasn't looking for a major improvement on 4.32.5,I wrote 4.28 in  my log book b4 leaving as my target time but despite falling to do that now's not the time to "spit the dummy out" or "throw toys out of my pram" it is however time to regroup,refocus,rethink and do it all again next Thursday and hope for a better outcome

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Get In The Ring

Prior to what was originally scheduled as my 2014 Outdoor track season opener a few weeks back I eluded to my weeks of base building training being akin to a boxer sparing in the gym,you can spar till the cows come home but sooner or later it's off w/ the pads,on w/ the gloves and time to step into the ring......that time has come and tomorrow evening baring any travel cock ups{go back and read any of my blog entries over the past few seasons and you'll see where St Christopher the patron saint of travellers has left me high and dry on the way to NYC for a track meet}my 2014 Outdoor season will kick off at Icahn Stadium in the Twilight Series over 1,500m

This will not only be my season opener but also my first outdoor 1,500m since that gut wrenching 4th place finish at the 2012 Outdoor Nationals in Lisle where I missed the podium by 6 100ths of a second despite running a seasons best 4.18.6
I've said retrospectivly that race was the catalyst of my 2012 season grinding to a halt,I pretty much mailed it in after that w/ below par performances over 5k on the road at Syracuse and the over 10k cross country in Lexington Kentucky which then morphed into not competing at all last season,I blew off the Indoor season and had no plans to compete Outdoors last summer on the track but I did entertain the notion of a Fall Marathon till the Tendonitis in my right achilles flared up and put paid  to that idea,however during my rehab I rediscovered my hunger to do what it takes to mix it up on the track and began the long road back.
Sadly "Old Man Winter" stuck a monkey wrench into my training for the Indoor season so much so that I didn't go to Boston for Indoor Nationals which if you now how much I love running at "The Reg" telsl you I didn't come by that decision easily.

My Indoor season felt mediocre at best, a bit like my old high school report cards"Kevin can do so much better if he only applies himself" and w/ that and the back of the "Winter Of Our Discontent" I was able to knuckle down to some serious training,after meger returns on my investment during the Winter I began to log 5 day/40 mile weeks week in week out w/ 2 repeats per week most weeks which leads to where I'm at now standing on the sideline waiting to see where those weeks of training have me in the general scheme of things.
Thursdays 1,500m is far from the "be all and end all" but a better idea of where I'm at,I ended my Indoor Season w/ a 1,500m time of 4.32.58 and in my blackest of pagan black heart I know I'm better than that and while the current status of entries for tomorrows race looks like it could well be a baptisim of fire for me w/ 3 sub 4.00 guys and 5 at 4.00 making up the sofar 12 man field this race represents a chance to see where I'm at and to see how far I've come since March 21st and what I still need to do over the final seven weeks till Outdoor Nationals.
It's been a long journey since the year began but really only a blink of an eye compared to where it all began as a high school freshman in the summer of 76 some 38 years,alot of races,some highs,some lows but providing the flesh isn't weak trust me the spirit is more than willing........."protect yourself at all times and obay the comands,let's have a good clean fight.....seconds out,Round One"................

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Broken Chain

Switch Up,Don't Bitch Up

Knowing I had the always challenging 8x300x200x300m repeats on tap for Saturday I ellected to wait till lunch time to conduct them at Temple's Geasey Field track.
In recent weeks a  group of Special Olympians have been working out at Temple on Saturday mornings and while they have as much right to the track as anybody  having to swing wide of them on the back straight can be an issue and while I was able to circumnavigate them last week on the mile repeats today on the 300s and 200s where hugging the inside lane is almost a must I thought it best to maybe wait till after 1pm to arrive at the track,it was a hunch that paid off as they were gone by the time  I arrived at 1.05pm and I more or less had the inside lane to myself.

By waiting till gone 12pm b4 leaving home I was able to cop the Championship Playoff Final between QPR and Derby,I was hoping  Arry's boys would win to keep six London clubs in the Premiership following Fulhams relegation and thanks to a 90th min goal it'll be Spurs,Palace,Chelski,QPR,wet spam and arsenal in the top flight come August.........#shitloadoflondonderbies
Mile warm up taken care of it was have at it time,last time out on April 26th I went:
51.6 32.3 50.9
52.4 32.7 50.9
50.8 32.8 51.4
51.9 33.6 52.1
52.3 34.3 53.1
53.2 33.6 52.6
52.4 33.5 52.4
52.3 33.9 51.8
Today I went:
49.9 31.9 50.5
50.6 33.0* 51.9
51.0 32.4 51.9
52.1 33.2 53.9
52.6 33.5 52.1
53.0 34.4 52.4
52.9 34.2 53.2*
53.2 34.2 51.5

To the naked eye they probably look very similar but upon "crunching the numbers" I came up at four seconds slower,the reason for the * on my second 200m and fourteenth 300m was the fact I was slightly impeded at the start of the 200m and finish of the 300m in both cases I should;ve had a 32 second 200m and 52 second 300m which would have put me at  negative two seconds.
Either way over twenty four repeats to be only two or four seconds off isn't too shabby and while I only have one more monster 8x300x200x300m repeats session on tap b4 Nationals it will be returning to the rotation post Wake Forest, to quote Nietzsche "What doesn't kill me makes me stronger"

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Maintaining The Status Quo

If it's Wednesday chances are it's a 8 mile recovery run, and while the popular beliefe is that "familiurity breeds comtempt" for me there's always been a certain security of a set schedule......providing you don't go to the well too often.
Since my final Indoor race of the season at The Armory on March 21 I've had 9 weeks of more or less the same schedule,eas run Monday,repeats Tuesday,recovery run Wednesday,repeats Saturday and long run on Sunday and while my recent groin injury meant having to postpone my racing phase of the season by a week I always wanted to have a block of set training uninterupted by races to hopefully set myself up for the next phase which should kick off next week and carry me to Wake Forest and Outdoor Nationals.

Conditions were grey and overcast w/ a hint of showers when I set off around 4.30pm,my only consession to that was to swop my bandanna for a baseball cap in case it rained,frankly other than a few random spots of rain I was unscathed by the rain..... a "feather in my cap" so to speak since the weather peeps were calling for showers on Wednedsay w/ heavier rain on Thursday,frankly I ran in far worse conditions than overcast and 67 degrees earlier this year and having taken care of business by Wednesday not only can I enjoy two rest days b4 Saturdays 8x300x200x300m repeats but also have the last laugh if it pisses out of the heavens this afternoon.

8 weeks till Nationals,1 more week till my Outdoor season kicks off,let's hope weeks of the "same ole same ole" have prepped me for the final phase of my assault on a pair of podium finishes in Wake Forest,granted there's life after Nationals the possibility of "throwing my bandannain the ring" for the Greater Philadelphia Track Club" Track Pentathlon in August,the "Fall Classic" 5th Avenue Mile in September b4 turning my thoughts to the Fall Cross Country season and settling some unfinished business over 10k at Club Nationals in December but all in good time, one eye on the prize,one eye on the future that's how I'm rolling.....

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Maybe The Last Time I Don't Know

Following a two week hiatus from my weekly schleep across the city it was back to "Tuesdays At Roxborough" for 6x600m repeats.......possibily for the last time this summer.......
Next week begins my Outdoor season w/ back to back races at Icahn Stadium on Thursday May 29th and the following week on June 5th which obviously rules out a Tuesday repeat session and then the following Tuesday June 10th the Tuesday Nite Speed Series also at Icahn Stadium kicks off which rules out June 10th,24th July8th and 22nd,now factor in the July 1st meet at Germantown and leaving for Greensboro and Nationals on July 16th I have no need to be at Roxborough on July 15th.......this leaves June 17th as my only open Tuesday between now and July 29th and frankly by then I'm hoping the track at Geasey Field on Temple's campus will be available......and frankly post repeat I won't be in any hurry to return to "Chav Central"..........

I arrived at Roxborough by 4.30pm there were a few walkers.....thankfully using the outside lanes and a couple of fellow runners,the omens were good and following a rigerious stretch of the groin I undertook my mile warm up b4 taking on 6x600m repeats,last time out on Aprill 22nd I went:1.48.1 1.50.1 1.49.7 1.52.4 1.51.4 1.51.4 I'd have to be at my best this afternoon to equal/better those marks.........

#1 600m
A solid start,I always feel as close to 1.15-35=1.50 I can run the better this was reasonably close to that and a good way to kick off the session

#2 600m
So far so good,how long could I hold onto this pace???

#3 600m
No thanks to "Nimrod & Nimrod" I had to swing wide into lane 2 after 50m of the top turn which probably lead to the 1.11 opening 400m,the question was would that come back to haunt me over the final three 600s?

#4 600m
I knew I was in trouble when I saw 1.16 at 400m,w/out checking my pervious set of 6x600s b4 hand I was only 1 second up on my overall plus/minus and I had a pair of 1.51.4 600s to close then....the writing was on the wall.

#5 600m
CLANG!!!!! The sound of the wheels coming off plus 1 to minus 4 in 600m

#6 600m
I knew I was toast and wasn't surprised to see 1.18 at 400m b4 dredging up a closing 36 second 200m

Negative 8 seconds for the session which is always disappointing but even more so as one of the by products of my upcoming race schedule is a lack of 6x600m opportunities I think I have two more scheduled unless I switch somethings up.
As for coming back to Roxborough on June 17th IF Temple is an option then Temple it is,it's not the commute to and from there that hacks me off but the  fucked up attitude I always seem to suffer here,granted any track is going to present it's share of logistical issues but Roxborough seems to be the epicenter of "Fuck You" each year since 05 maybe 06 when I've come out here to do repeats there hasn't been a year where someone didn't fuck me over w/ their blatant disregard for other people using the track.

Case in point today,while I wholeheartedly commend Mrs Bitchcuntwhore for using lane 6 to walk in she allows her daughter Lil Bitchcuntwore to not only ride her bike on the track but then PARK it in lane 1 while me and a few other runners were using the track........what the fuck bitch??????
Not once as I wizzed by he shifting to lane 2 did I hear tell her daughter to move the bike or get out of lane 1 at one point as she was running back to the bike from an outer lane I braced myself for impact as i was sure I was going to clatter into and you just know who'd have been the "villian of the peace" if that had happened......and this is why I won't be sorry if my yearly pilgrimage to Roxborough is done for another year

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Six Of One,Half A Dozen Of Another

Nice easy 6 miler to kick off the week,as I eluded to yesterday the Sunday long run is going to be 14 miles untill late June when I begin my taper for Nationals but upon returning from Wake Forest I'll resume the 14 miler so to accomodate that one of my weekday 8 milers needs to drop to 6 miles,I figured w/ repeats on tap for Tuesday then Monday was the ideal day for that.....of course I may be singing from a different hymn sheet on Wednesday when I have to do an 8 miler post 6x600m repeats but we'll cross,burn,jump,paint that bridge come Wednesday!!!

70 degrees but cloudy when I set off at 4.45pm not quite shorts,shades and sleeveless weather but to quote Meatloaf "Two Out Of Three Aint Bad" as I ditched the shades.
Franklin Field was still a little congested after this mornings Graduation ceremony,congrats to the Seniors and class of 2014 I hope your four year Ivy League education has prepared you for life in the real world.
As for the groin injury,touchwood I'm ok I'm still icing it and doing two sets of stretches b4 and after a workout/run,I feel a lot less tentative when I run now but I still need to exercise a little caution,Nationals are 8 weeks away and another injury could be an industrial size spanner in the works.

Another 62 min time,proof that last week wasn't a one off I need to take full advantage of this week w/ two scheduled repeat sessions on tap as next week begins a series of 6 races over 7 weeks and thus only one repeat per week,time to make them all count now.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Take The Long Way Home

In a week that had seen me begin just hoping the groin injury had gone away saw me finish strong enough to ponder had my week off prehaps been a blessing in disguise?
Because I opted to ease my way back into things over 6 miles on Tuesday and Wednesday I found myself needing a 14 mile on Sunday to round out at 40mpw and to be perfectly honest I was ok w/ that.
I 'd been giving some serious thought to upping my Sunday long run to 14 miles for a few weeks now,it would allow me the option of doing the whole Art Museum Loop at 8.4 miles w/ 3 miles there and three miles a 14 miler so post the Shanghai Diamond League meet on Universal Sports Network and a transatlantic shoot the shit phone call w/ "Our Kid" back home I was out the door by 11.25am for my first 14 miler in eons.

I'll have to "consult  the Oracle" ie my running log to see when I last did the whole loop around the Schuylkill it has been a while maybe 2012? which is probably  the last time I set foot on West River Drive and while it's thankfully free of regatta traffic it also more often than not free of runners also!
I didn't pass anyone running north bound towards Falls Bridge untill just after Columbia Bridge and then didn't pass anyone untill I crossed Falls Bridge and made the journey south bound.
Conditions were great sunny and probably in the low 60s I worked up a decent sweat but unlike Thursdays early afternoon 8 miler when I looked like I'd taken a dip in the Schuylkill by the time I'd finished I wasn't dripping wet at the compleation on my run.

As is it's won't Sunday along Kelly Drive means avoiding the regatta traffic but in fairness the path wasn't as crowded as it has been in recent weeks.....or maybe only having to negotiate it once made it seem like that,either way I wasn't ducking,bobbing and weaving like I normally have to!!!
I was never overly concerned about adding 2 more miles to the run and didn't feel I had to dig too deep,that said I felt like from the South St Bridge onwards I couldn't buy a green light if I wanted to and all that stopping and restarting wasn't doing much for trying to keep a cadence over the closing 1.5 miles.
Having ran the last three 12 milers at 1.48 which is roughly 9 min mile pace I felt a 2.06 was a legit target today so imagine my surprize and delight to clock a 2.00.

Maybe,just maybe that week off was a blessing afterall? after 8 weeks of pushing myself  that injury enforced week off may have done me the power of good,if it was only one run I'd improved on I'd shrug it off but the fact is over 6 miles on Wednesday I was 2 mins faster,over 8 miles on Thursday I was 4 mins faster on Saturday over 4x1 mile I was 47 seconds faster and now over 14 miles I was 6 mins faster.
So should I take off every ninth week from here on in? having looked ahead that would be the week b4 I leave for Wake Forest,I had it down as a low milage week anyway as the third week of my taper but maybe outside of the 800m race I had scheduled I should do nothing?
it's something to ponder,not just for Nationals but looking further down the road every 9th week a week off to recharge the batteries at 50 might be a wise and prudent move on my part.

Is It A Stretch To Say I'm Back?

After three easy runs Tue,Wed and Thursday w/out any issue w/ my groin I went into Saturday mornings scheduled 4x1 mile repeats hoping for the best,last week I failed miserably to manage 600m repeats last Saturday but following a weeks worth of stretches the groin had responded well,the acid test would be repeats all the easy running in the world wasn't going to mean jack shit if I couldn't push off on my repeats,to say I was aprehensive on my way over to Geasey Field would be putting it mildly in fact I was so distracted that I forgot to bless myself w/ holy water from my font b4 leaving home......if ever there was a morning for "Devine Inspiration" it was this morning!!!!!!

I arrived at Temple's track by 10.35am there were a number of people on the track which can sometimes serve as an issue,I'm all for people walking around the track if that's there way of getting exercise but when there are four signs posted around the track,one on the top turn ,one on the home straight and two along the back straight that ask walkers to use the outside lanes and yet they still insist on walking in lane 1 and 2 it can be a bit of a ball buster my feeling is if I swing wide of you on my warm up laps I send a message that I'm willing to do that during my repeats{not that expect your average walker/jogger to know the difference between warm up,repeat and cool down you understand!!!} and frankly to quote an old English expression"that's just not cricket" so even if means taking a New York City taxi approach to things and darting into spaces that don't exsist then so be it #gottadowhatigottado

Following my mile warm up I laced up my running flat,took a deep breath and offered up one final prayer to the Running Gods and hoped I could get my mile repeats in............

#1 Mile
Oh snap! such was my relife pushing off the starting line pain free that I may've gotten a tad carried away w/ myself{do you think????} the question was how would I respond to the next three repeats??

#2 Mile
Not too sharp a drop off and even though I was guilty of not running through the finish line at 5.30.2 I was faster than my previous best mile split of 5.34.8. from April 29th 18 days ago

#3 Mile
I was beginning to feel the effects of that opening mile but even w/out looking at my April 29th times I knew I was a country mile ahead of them in terms of times

#4 Mile
Having worked this hard I wasn't about to let it all go to shite on the finale and even though laps #2 and #3 got away from me I finished strong.

A whopping 47 second difference from April 29th's 5.37.6-5.34.8-5.40.4-5.45.5 which had been my best set of mile repeats todate,granted conditions were utterly different today from the cold wind and rain not to mention doing these first thing in the mid morning as oppossed to in the afternoon after work but that said today was a quantum leap in terms of times and splits and I relish my next set of mile repeats although w/a schedule of 6 races in 7 weeks beginning on May 29th it may be a while b4 I next tackle 4x1 mile repeats,whenever it is I hope to build on this effort

Friday, May 16, 2014

Keep The Faith

It wasn't lost on me as I made my way out the door at 1.20pm yesterday afternoon for my easy 8 mile run that had it not been for my recent groin injury I'd have been boarding the 1.30pm Bolt Bus for New York City for my season opening outdoor race over 800m.
While there was little I could do re the injury there will be other races.....providing I can keep the recent groin strain/pull at bay since adding the stretches to my recovery the groin has felt better the difference between how it felt on Tuesdays 6 miler and todays 8 miler was noticable but I'm along way from feeling 100% mentally w/ it,the true litmus test will be getting on the track on Saturday for repeats,providing I can execute that then I'll feel I'm good to go.

While it was a bummer to lose out on the season opener there will be other races,I've tentativly set May 29th now as my season opener over 1,500m at Icahn Stadium,it will mean potentially running 6 races in 7 weeks in my countdown to Nationals but I can live w/ that,on the subject of Nationals yesterday marked single digits now till Wake Forest......time has been ticking for a while but now that we're into single digits the realization that it's "Game Time" is alot more pronounced.

As for my run it felt odd to be running at lunch time on a weekday,there were less runners out on the Schuylkill Banks and Kelly Dr than at 4.20pm but it suited me,less temptation to test myself against other runners,I'm still easing myself back into things,if the unthinkable happens and I reinjure myself I may well have put myself out of the running for Nationals which is the last thing I need.
Like Wednesday I felt I was running slow but I ended up w/ a faster time than when I last time I timed an 8 miler,back in late March I was averaging 1.24 for an 8 miler yesterday I clocked 1.20  so maybe this feeling I'm running slower is just in my head and not my legs afterall??
A day off on Friday but not from the stretches as they seem to be working,fingers crossed come Saturday I can handle a set of 4x1 mile repeats,now is NOT to lose my faith or my bottle.

Schools Out For Summer

Another easy 6 miler on Wednesday to see how the groin was coming along.
If I'd been tentative on Tuesday I was a little less skittish on Wednesday although caution is still the watch word,I need to ease my way back into the full swing of things,I'm not "letting the clutch out" on the downhills or working the uphills either like I usually do but there will be time for that as I get futher away from the injury.
Despite felling like I was running slow I clocked a 62 minute for the 6 miler,back in late March I clocked a 64 min time so based on that evidence I'm at least stronger and faster than I was eight weeks ago, at this stage I'll take any positives I can find.

One similarity on both my 6 milers was the grid lock in and around Upenn's campus, based on the evidence of passing Franklin Field and the area just behind the stadium graduation must be this coming Monday for the class of 14 meanwhile the returning freshman,sophmore and junior classes are moving out of their dorm rooms on campus and frat houses and campus apartments on Cedar Ave.
I never got to experience college,frankly I wasn't the academic type and the thought of higher education after my senior year in 80 didn't do anything for me but in the 27 years I've now  lived here in America I've often pondered the "what if" game.
What If  I 'd grown up here in America and had the same athletic ability that I had in high school back home in South East London? would I have been good enough to get on a college track team? could I have had a college career?
Obviously if I could've had my say in that I would;ve wanted to go to Villanova as a middler distance runnner,graduating high school in the summer of 1980  would've meant I would've been in the final group of athletes the late great Jumbo Elliot recruited along w/ Marcus O I said it's wishful thinking on my part,there's no way of knowing if I'd have been good enough for Villanove much less if I had the grades or the money to attend but somedays when I'm out there putting the miles in it's fun to ponder the "what if" game

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Fuck W/ The Bull,Get The Horns.......

While Paul Gleason plays a complete tool as Mr Vernon in the all time classic movie "The Breakfast Club" he does utter one of the all time great movie lines to Judd Nelson aka John Bender "mess w/ the bull,get the horns" it's a sentiment I've carried w/ me for years but of course as a Born Again Black Hearted Pagan  I tend to kick it up a notch or two.......

Having been sidlined for a week w/ this groin injury has done little for  sunny disposition and add to it two days of having to run the dock single handed while my co worker took off just added fuel to the fire so the last thing the situation needed was a naked flame in the mix.......
I'll spare you the gory details but basically my final good nerve got worked to death by a delivery driver who if I'm being honest is about as welcome as a raging case of exploding diarrhea and w/ that the fuse was lit.....and he got not only both barrels but in some probability a weeks worth of non running frustration right between the eyes........CLEARLY it was time for a run!!!!!

Pagan bollockings aside I had planned to run anyway,the hope was  a week off from  running coupled w/ twice daily icing of the left groin and now a bunch of stretches b4 and after the run would have me back training.
I opted for an easy 6 miler to ease my way back into the swing of things,following last Mondays DNF over 8 miles the aim was to run pain free and also finish the run.....I managed both.
I felt I was short changing myself at only 6 miles but the plan is to have another 6 miler on Wednesday and if that goes to plan then up it to 8 miles on Thursday,the injury has forced me not to look/plan too far ahead.
It felt good to back in my "natural enviroment" running along the Schuylkill Banks and hopefully this recent setback in my plans for Wake Forest and Outdoor Nationals is just a hiccup.....I'm sure anyone w/ the misfortune to deliver to the dock will hope so also as a sign reading "Beware Of The Horns"may need to be posted at the dock doorway.......

Monday, May 12, 2014

Bet He Drinks Carling Black Label aka Notes From The DL

It feels as alien not to blog as it does not to run and God willing and fingers crossed I'll be back to doing both this coming week.
Since last Mondays DNF on a routine easy 8 miler I've had to sit out all my scheduled training runs as I hope a weeks rest and a twice sometimes three times a day ice pack on ye olde groin heals me,I may have to also add some Physical Therapy suggested stretches into the "rehab" to speed up the process.
Being injured SUCKS being a runner and not being able to run is like being told don't just goes against the grain of my day to day exsistence but I'm astute enough to know that to continue to run on a dodgy groin is only going to make things worse so it's the DL for a week-10 days{hopefully!!!} b4 returning to full blown training.

While the timing sucks w/ my first outdoor race scheduled for this Thursday it could be worse,as of Thursday I'm 9 weeks away from Nationals and while I'd rather  NOT  be injured period I'd rather it was 9 weeks out than 9 days out,providing the injury heals I should be able to make my 2014 outdoor track debut now on July 29th over 1,500m w/ an 800m the following Thursday......fingers crossed.
I did test the injury slightly on Wednesday nite,the Black Label Society concert at The Electric Factory ended around 12.10am and I knew the #34 trolley back home to West Philly left 13th St at 12.23am so I jogged from 7th and Callowhill to 10th and Arch,down 10th St,cut thro the Greyhound bus terminal to the Septa concourse  at 11th St and along the concourse to 13th.
I felt "ok" there was some niggling pain but it could've been a lot more painful at 10th and Vine St not Arch St as I previously stated when I ran headlong into a Possum........

Oh the irony! if you've been a regular on Kevinrunningfree you'll know 2010 was "PossumGate" after myself and Joel Dubow had a war of words via Masterstrack Blog where he said I looked like a Possum and that should be my nickname......{very mature I thought.......NOT!!!!!!} anywho it kind of backfired on him as i not only embraced the nickname but bought an Awesome Possum t shirt online that I wore at Outdoor Nationals just so the words would stick in his throat ......
I had no intention of tackling the Possum at 10th and Vine as it stared me dowm on the sidewalk,I ducked around the parked car and crossed Vine St to head down 10th wouldn't risk following into Chinatown I was pretty sure!!!!!

Saturday I did make my way to Geasey Field to see if repeats were possible and while my mile warm up felt ok as soon as I tried to push off on my left leg the stabbing pain in my groin confirmed there would be no repeats.
I'll sit out Monday to give myself a week off and see if "easy miles" are doable Tuesday and hope the ice and stretches are working,having missed one week and already scratched one race I'm eager to get back into the flow of things.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Don't Walk This Way

I should've known it was all going too well,10 days out from my outdoor season opener and i now have a groin strain.......fuckin' fantastic!!!!!!!!
Right from the getgo on my easy 8 miler I felt some discomfort in my left groin,I tried to ignore it at first in the hope I could run it off,at 50 let's face it everyhing hurts! I wrestle daily w/ tendonitis in my right achilles and just recently my right knee has been giving me jip so when the left groin was feeling off I didn't give it too much creedence,however at 4 and 3/4 miles into my run I pulled up grimacing,there was only so much gritting my teeth I could.
I hoped I could walk it off but w/in a 1/4 mile when I tried to get going again the jig was very much up and ended up having to walk the last three miles home......insert the time honoured "could've been worse,could've been raining" quote at your peril!!!!!

It wasn't a fun walk home period but being passed by runners in both direction as I cut a forlorn figure making my way south along the Schuylkill Banks,I HATE being injured it flat out sucks but after working my arse off for the past 6 weeks for this to happen now 10 days b4 my first race of the outdoor season just adds insult to considerable injury.
There's not much I can do w/ a groin injury in terms of healing it outside of rest and ice.....bad enough I froze my nuts off this winter now I have to apply an ice pack to my groin.....gee thanks a fuckin' bunch!!!!
Needless to say I didn't get my bag ready for Roxborough and repeats this afternoon,nor will I be out on the out and back 8 mile route this week,fingers crossed a few days rest and icing and maybe I can tackle some repeats on the weekend but that will depend on how the groin feels..........

Monday, May 5, 2014

In This River

If It's Sunday it's a 12 miler out and back along the Schuylkill River........providing it hasn't flooded it's banks!!!!!!!
After Wendesdays rain of Biblical preportion and subsequently Thursdays rescheduled easy 8 miler I knew there'd been flooding along both the Schuylkill Banks and Kelly Dr so I had to prepare myself for potentially more "cross country" conditions yesterday lunchtime.

Conditions were grey and overcast as I set off at 10.40am w/ the hint of rain that thankfully never ammounted to more than spots of rain during the run.
W/ 40,000 runners at the Broad St Run I knew I could expect a slightly less congested course this Sunday but evidently I wasn't the only local runner who'd nixed the Broad St Run as I came across a few dozen other "non participants on my travels upto my 6 miler turnaround point along Kelly Dr and back again.
Kudos to either the City workers or Fairmount Park Dept  for clearing the excess mud off of the Schuykill Bank and Kelly Dr that I went through on Thursday today was smooth sailing underfoot.
On the subject of sailing,no regetta on the Schuylkill today,I was lead to believe there were regettas for the next three Sundays and while the water level on  the Schuylkill appeared to be back to normal there was no regatta.....although if the tree trunk that had gotten lodged on the foot of the Amatrak bridge was any indication god only knows what else still lurked w/in the river!!!!!!

Clocked another 1.48 time,that's three in  a row now,considering I don't run w/ a watch I'm impressed at the level of consistancy I seem to log these "long runs".
Another 5 day/40 mpw in the books,one more on tap b4 the racing segment of my season kicks off in earnest the week after next.

Unleashed In The East End

Friday, May 2, 2014

After The Levee Brakes

Needless to say there was no run on Wednesday,I'm not sure what the official rain total was in Philly for Wednesday but I heard 4.94 inches in New York City so my guess Philly couldn't have been too far behind that.
One drawback of not running on Wednesday was my monthly milage total stayed at 160 miles and not 168,even at 160 miles of a possible 174 miles on offer it was my most prolific month to date outshining the 152 miles I logged in March,it's no wonder my performances in training have improved over the past two months w/ 152 and 160 miles's a far cry from the 118 and 76 I managed in January and Feburary and w/ my outdoor season about to get underway in 2 weeks time let's see if the extra mileage will translate into better times on the track as the all important 800m and 1,500m races in my build up to Outdoor Nationals kick off on May 15th,we're eleven weeks away from Wake Forest and Outdoor Nationals now,the clock is very much ticking.

Easy 8 miler on tap my biggest concern was the Schuylkill Banks,I'd heard the Schuylkill river had breached it's banks on Wednesday so I wasn't sure what to expect as I came off the footbridge from Markward Playground onto the beginning of the Schuylkill Banks.
There was some yellow caution tape across the path which would indicate that at some point the Banks were very much under water and off limits but I saw runners ahead of me in both directions so I figured it was ok to keep running.
There were parts of the path that were covered in mud which not only meant to exercise a little caution but also meant that even on May 1st it's never too early to prepare for cross country season!!!

Following rain of almost biblical preportions on Wednesday it was kind of weird to experience 78 degree temps today but I wasn't complaining,it may be time to bust out the sleeveless running shirts now as both my bandana and dri fit shirt were suitably drenched in sweat by the time I completed my run and my shoes bore the mud of the Schuylkill Banks which"made me feel bad trying to find my way home".........