Sunday, December 24, 2017

All I Want For Christmas Is For The Universe To Stop Fuckin' W/ Me*

* Actually there are a few things I'd prefer but this would be a start........

Mea Culpa time first,sorry for the lack of blogging of late......this stems from a lack of actual running!!!
Did notch a 10 miler on Tue Dec 5th....blink and you'd have missed it
Throw in two midweek Spurs games,some late afternoons at work,a bit of fatigue,brass monkeys cold{snow three times in seven days between Dec 9th & 15th} and a need for new running shoes and there you have two weeks off the books

Tue Dec 19th
10 Miles: I had hoped to get things back on schedule on Monday...and would have IF Postman Pratt had done his job properly on Saturday and rang my doorbell while I was home,instead he shoves the old "we tried to deliver" card thro the mailbox and forced me over to the local Sorting Office to collect a book and dvd I'd ordered from Amazon Monday after work,it was gone 5pm when I got home so I stuck  the proverbial fork in it....what's one more day yeah?
Tuesday saw me break in the new running shoes after logging 350 miles on the last pair,it was also the maiden run w/ my new Nike long sleeve Yellow Spurs training shirt,warm enough to use as an outer layer to be visible in dead of Winter and thin enough to use as a base layer when it'll freeze the bollocks off a brass Monkey during said winter
Felt good to be out running again.

Wed Dec 20th
10 Miles: Swooped bandana for thermal hat and gloves today,maybe not that cold but way milder than yesterday{case in point Tue I ran w/ my sleeves rolled up,today sleeves down,gloves on!!} and w/ miles 3 through 8 along the Schuylkill River I wasn't about to play "fast and loose" w/ conditions period,muchless w/ my pisspoor blood circulation.
Highlight of the run just after mile 6 I was cognizant of footsteps behind me and then heavy breathing on my left hand wanna do this dance??? my conditioning level maybe in pre season level but my you want it,you're gonna earn it level is right up there in mid season form as I pushed the pace a little and dropped my would be overtaker,as Patti Dillon famously said"make em spit blood if they want to pass you".....

Thur Dec 21st
10 Miles: It's been a while since I've logged back to back to back runs period,muchless in midweek but if I needed to prove/underline my desire to get things back on schedule hopefully this went a ways to  doing so.
Highlight of the run,observing the crescent moon over W.Philly on the other side of the Schuylkill River as I made my way to the five mile make along Kelly Drive,while a fully paid up member of the "Loneliness Of The Long Distant Runner" society it was kind of reassuring to think someone was watching over me in the pitch black dark of the early evening

Sunday Dec 24th
10 Miles: So in yet another classic example of work screwing my running schedule w/ their uncanny ability to and I quote fuck up a Teddy Bears Picnic Saturdays proposed Tempo run and Sundays Track intervals got obliterated thanks to an 11 hour work day the time I got home just gone 6pm  I wasn't heading back out to go grocery shopping that took precedence Saturday morning thus putting the kybosh on the Tempo run....
Sunday my choices were: 8 Mile Tempo Run,5x1000m repeats,10 miler or saying BOLLOCKS.......I opted for the 10 miler!
A rare Sunday run,I think the last was my Tempo Run on Dec 3rd,it was nice to run in the daylight again even if it was a tad brisk at 8.40am.
If Accu Weather are to be believed{I don't believe in Santa,Cupid or the Easter Bunny so why the fuck would I believe in the Weather peeps!!}from Wednesday onwards it won't get above freezing so today,tomorrow,and Tuesday are going to be positively "balmy" compared to what's in the forecast...

A 4 day/40mpw....not too shabby it puts me at 950 miles for the year....SO the hope for the final week of the year is a minimum of 5 days at 10 miles or 4 days at 10 miles and a Tempo Run/Track Intervals on the weekend for 54 mpw either or gives me 1000/1004 miles for the a year of small victories what's one more?

Sunday, December 3, 2017

As You Were/Pretending To See The Future

I've never been one to sit on my laurels when things have gone to script so when things turn to shite aka the Philly Marathon the mindset is just the same,get out there and get after it.......

Monday 10 Miles
My legs may have recovered from the pounding the marathon put on them but judging from the edge this first post "we can't organize a piss up in a Brewery or a bunk up in a Brothel" run exhibited there was, and still will be some residual anger towards the event,but as John Lydon sang in "Rise" anger is an energy and boy was  I energetic......
It felt good to be out there running again anger or not and while I didn't bother to wear my Garmin since I know where the  five mile mark is nor did I need to time the run I figured on 10 min mile pace for a comfortable 1.30.....I left at 4.50pm and got back by 6.20pm....more like 8 min mile pace for wonder my calves were screaming a tad......

Thursday 10 Miles
Wednesdays proposed run got 86ed at the last minute but I wasn't allowing myself to slide into bad habits and made sure to get out and get after it on Thursday.
Given it's more or less dusk by 5pm now I once again opted for one of my several Yellow Spurs shirts over a long sleeve running shirt given it was mild enough not to require a that end as we enter December and Winter I bought a long sleeve Yellow Spurs training shirt recently,I refuse to not run because it's dark....nor do I want to hear the "I didn't see you" excuse that's almost contractually obligated during Dec,Jan,Feb

Saturday 10 Miles
Spurs kick off at worries,up at 6am and out the door by 7am to "handle my business" b4 8.20am
W/ a 7am start I did go w/ my thermal hat and gloves which felt prudent,the trade off for brisk am running is daylight so old fateful my Blue Spurs training jacket got an airing.
Felt good to run in daylight again,something that will be in short supply the next few months unless it's the weekend or day off from week during the week

Sunday 8 Mile Tempo Run
B4 I lost out on a track season for 2018 I had opted to reintroduce the 8 mile tempo run into my weekly rotation,the logistics are a bit of a ball buster for a 54 min run it took two and a half hours from when I left home 8am till my return 10.30am but that has as much to do w/ Sunday service on mass transit and NOT a reason to  not have it in the rotation.
My baseline was 7 min mile pace over 8 miles for a target time of 56 mins,my splits were:6.12 6.46 6.36 6.49 7.09 7.06 7.06 6.59 for 54.43.4 off 6.50 mile pace
If I thought not starting till 8.45am would not require gloves I erred and after mile 1 balled my fists up and pulled my jacket sleeves down to cover them but by mile three they were ok and by mile 4 I was able to roll my sleeves up a tad.
So fingers crossed on Friday when I scheduled a day off from work I can get over to the Art Museum Loop  and have at it again  between Lloyd Hall counter clockwise up Kelly Dr,down W.River Dr and finish at the foot of the steps of the Art Museum and beat 54.43

W/ the dust now settled on the marathon debacle I've been able to tentatively rewrite my 2018 season,heavy on half marathons the tentative schedule looks like this:
Jan 21st Fred Lebow Half*
Mar 18th United Airlines Half
Mar 25th Love Run Half
May 5th Indianapolis Mini Marathon Half
May 20th Airbnb Brooklyn Half
June 3rd Oddessey Half Marathon
July 29th San Francisco Marathon
Sept 16th Philly Rock & Roll Half Marathon
Oct 8th Portland Marathon or Half
Nov 10th Rocky Run 5k & 10M....equals a half marathon

The Fred Lebow half is tentative because mid January who the fuck knows what the weather is doing,to that end I could run indoors at The Armory on Jan 11th over 3,000m and or Jan 25th over 5,000m,however I would need to see a dramatic improvement in my pace on the tempo runs and also reintroduce weekly interval workouts which I have penciled in for Dec 16th and 23rd.
As much as I wanted to consider the LA Marathon on Mar 18th finances or a lack thereof have ruled that out,since I didn't think I'd be worrying about another marathon after Nov 19th I didn't make any fiscal plans and now that I have opted to tackle another marathon that requires entry fees,airfare,accommodation and w/ a family trip to "the auld country" Ireland NOT mid July I can't swing LA hence why San Fran is on the schedule,w/ Portland as my fall back
The Portland half is linked by the MLS Schedule,IF the Portland Timbers have a home game the weekend of October 7th/8th I can kill two birds w/ one stone IF I can't swing San Fran from a $
standpoint then it's the Portland marathon irregardless of a home game or not

This is ALL  subject to change but for now it's the blue print I'm working from

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Thanks For Nothing Philly.......

I have said more than once on Kevinrunningfree that it's never easy to sit and blog when things have gone pear shaped.....last Sunday is NOT the exception to that rule and while my lack of blogging the cock up that was the 2017 Philly Marathon had more to do w/ a lack of sufficient time to do the debacle justice it must be said that a whole week later I still harbour resentments and anger towards who ever was responsible for  cock ups of biblical proportion that ruined my race b4 it began and thus took my three and a half months of hard work and sacrifice and basically pissed them up against the wall......thanks for nothing arseholes!!!!

I 100% accept that we live in a time when terrorism and or the treat of a lone wolf attack on a major event is a concern so while the security check of all runners entering the runners area was maybe required I do ask where was this at Broad St when 40,000 runners gathered to run? where was this in September for the Rock & Roll Half Marathon? or even last weeks Rocky Run both of which used Eakins Oval a la the marathon?
If memory serves me correctly in my last Philly Marathon bag check was in a tent on Eakins Oval.....but this year any and all tent space seemed to be utilized for either commercial or merchandise purposes,hooray for the all mighty dollar but fuck you to the runners who like myself had devoted weeks/months of training and sacrifice to this day.
While the UPS trucks have worked for gear check for several years they dropped the ball BIG TIME last Sunday,the lines were ungodly as time was ticking down to the 7am start and then to add considerable insult to injury as I got w/in five feet of the truck I'd spent 20 mins in line for they pulled the shutter door down and told us they were full and we'd have to join another line.............are you fuckin' kiddin me???????
If you've ever watched the news when there's a natural disaster and a relief truck shows up to offer food,water,blankets,medical supplies to the needy Sunday was a reversal of that,instead of hands outstretched to claim bags you had hundreds of runners w/ out stretched  hands trying to hand bags to the UPS was so bad I saw runners towards the end of the marathon running w/ their gear bags on their 26.2 isn't difficult enough!!!!!!!!

By now the National Anthem had been sung,the Wheelchair athletes had started and the corrals were being sent off in 5 minute intervals,I forget what I used for my seed time as I entered in May post Broad St but when I picked up my race bib on Saturday I was given a Maroon corral place.....just behind the elite athletes......problem was having finally gotten my gear onto a UPS gear truck I was stuck at the very rear of the far back was I?????? I was behind the pace runners for the five hour runners............
Someone had the bright idea to "pen in the runners" w/ railing fences either side of the Ben Franklin Parkway,there was zero guarantee I could work my way on the outside of the pen to find a gap to squeeze in ahead of the rear of the field and given the overnight rain had only just stopped between 6 and 6.30am it would be my dumb luck to slip/trip climbing the railings so reluctantly I stayed put w/ the five hour runners preferring to try and stay positive and not use up energy ranting and raving about the cock up unfolding b4 me,eventually at 7.25am some 25 mins after I should've begun I got to start.

Prior to Sunday I had ran 14 marathons..........NEVER between Harrow in 1985 and Athens in 2005 had I encountered a situation where the mile markers were only posted on ONE SIDE of the road.......evidently said mile markers at miles one,two and three, miles were ALL  posted on the left hand side of Arch St and Delaware Ave..........I had elected to run on the right side of the street and thus didn't see a mile marker till mile FOUR   on Front St......ALSO on the left hand side of the street,I had swung left left to avoid the water station otherwise I would have missed that one also..........
Had I seen the mile marker at mile one I would've seen my split was 6.04 and eased the fuck off the gas,the plan was 7 minute mile pace but by the time I hit mile 4 in 25.36 the damage was done
I heard runners complain about a lack of clocks out on the course and while most runners prefer to use their own timing frankly a running clock from the gun going off at 7am and then 7.25am when we started would've been pointless

8 of my first 10 miles ended up at sub 7 mile pace so it is NO SURPRISE at mile 21 I just ran out of gas,my final five miles were a painful combination of walk,run,walk as my splits ballooned to 11.26-10.29-11.53-12.21-12.00 hence my 8.04 mile pace and 3.34.07 finish.............
Had I thrown caution to the wind and said "fuck it I'm going balls out to break three hours" and up my record to 9&6{nine sub three hour marathons,six plus three hours} and blown up at mile 21 fair enough but thanks to a catalog of cock ups by the Philadelphia Marathon I got well and truly STUFFED four days b4 Thanksgiving............

The blueprint coming into Philly was to notch a marathon in my 50s to go w/ the 14 I'd ran in my 20's 30's and 40's that way IF in my 60's there was a desire to try one I wouldn't have a missing decade,I had also planned to return to track in 2018 post marathon.......that has now been shot to shit,I cannot,nor will not allow this shit show to be my last marathon until Nov 2023 when I turn 60 so I'm looking into options for 2018.....I can tell you next November's Philadelphia Marathon will  NOT  be an option,this was my 4th and final Philadelphia Marathon after the shit show they produced.
I need a little time to lick my wounds" before regrouping and beginning to train again not to mention save the required airfare,entry fee,accommodation/travel expenses that coming w/ an "out of town" marathon but the Philadelphia Marathon can go fuck it's self..............

Monday, November 20, 2017

Evidently My Unfinished Business Is Unfinished........

I had planned to come to the table this lunchtime and blog yesterdays marathon.......this will have to keep for a day or two,having slept on the issue last nite I can say I DO plan another crack at 26.2 potentially Los Angeles in March if some logistics can be worked out.

Things did not go my way yesterday morning and for that I hold UPS and the organisers of the marathon to blame,I will get into this in detail when time permits but for now know The Pale Kenyan is NOT done w/ the marathon just yet......
to be continued.......

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Twenty Six Point Two A Pale Kenyan History

As I attempt to channel my inner Cher and "Turn Back Time" tomorrow and run my first marathon in twelve years what better time to reflect on my marathon history......if you are sitting comfortably I'll begin......

Harrow 11.3.85
A stunning debut if I say so myself to brake the three hour barrier at the first attempt,lucked out in the respect it was a loop course and knew what to expect on the second loop

London 4.20.86
A disappointment given my debut 5 months prior,the truth was I didn't work as hard for London as I did for  Harrow

Philly 11.29.87
A combination of not putting the work in either side of leaving home in London at the end of October and my arrival in Philly a month b4 the marathon and getting severely dehydrated lead to my second slowest marathon to date,a dark day for one so pale......

New York City 11.4.90
You can't keep a good Kenyan down for long!
Three years after my darkest day I bounced back w/ a gutsy 3.06.21 and reached "the promised land" aka Boston inside the 3.10 qualifying time

Boston 4.15.91
Beginners luck in Boston??? maybe but a then PR and back under the three hour mark again

Philly 11.18.01
Ten and a half years after my last marathon I proved you can"teach an old Kenyan new tricks" and while I failed to get under three hours I did once again qualify for Boston

Boston 4.15.02
No pr but sub three again and thoughts of a "l Heart Boston" tattoo,any thoughts of moving to Beantown were obliterated by how cold it is there,it never gets that cold in the Rift Valley......

Chicago 10.13.02
A PR and sub 2.50,Chicago is a pr course sadly I never got close to sub 2.50 again....maybe I should've returned to the "Windy City"

London 4.13.03
Bad day at the office,w/ hindsight not enough recovery time from my flight from Philly,0 for 2 in London at sub 3......

New York City 11.2.03
0 for 2 in NYC at Sub 3,was Chicago a fluke? were my sub 3 days behind me.......

Sea Isle 3.28.04
Never write off a Pale Kenyan! not only sub 3 but.....third overall having lead most of the race

Philly 11.21.04
Clearly Sea Isle wasn't a fluke but as ever the glass half empty in me rued not going sub 2.50

Boston 4.18.05
Sub 3 by the skin of my teeth thanks to a frantic sprint up Boyleston St,channeling my inner Murtaugh from "Lethal Weapon" I'm getting too old for this shit.......

Athens 11.6.05
Where better to mark the 20th anniversary of my Marathon debut than the birthplace of the Marathon......evidently in 20 years I'd only lost 17 seconds......

Philly 11.19.17
It remains to be seen if the last three months of hard work and sacrifice and dedication are enough to get my now 54 year old bones around 26.2 miles......I guess we'll find out in the morning......
To Be Continued.....

Sunday, November 12, 2017

The Hay Is In The Barn Now.....

Two day,three runs,20 miles and that's all she wrote for the preparation for the 2017 Philadelphia Marathon folks........

As I mentioned last week this was my final week of taper and while I was grateful for the fact I didn't have to tackle runs of any distance in the dark I won't have that crutch for much longer.
That said as a runner it's almost impossible NOT to run but I feel I've earned this taper so I "kept my powder dry" until the weekend.

Sat {Sham}Rocky Run
Two things out of my control almost derailed this,the sudden dip in temperatures and Septa!!!!
While the Arctic conditions couldn't be helped the cock up in the trolley tunnel probably could've been
W/ a 7.15am gun time for the 5k I figured the 22 block trolley ride didn't need to be till 6.25,15 mins at worst,a 10 min walk to the Ben Franklin Parkway,that gave me 25 mins to warm up,stretch and wait till the last possible moment to strip down to my race gear......that part I did manage!
Just outside 33rd St there was a signal failure and we sat there for 20/25 mins,when we finally reached 30th St it was now 7am.........
My warm up was me running up the Schuylkill footpath towards the Art Museum,thank Christ I'd picked up my race number on Thursday as it was 7.10am when I got to Eakins Oval,the 5k runners were lined up at the start and the National Anthem was being sung as I frantically stripped down to race gear and made my way into the corral.
Insult to injury my Garmin wouldn't load in time for me to use it so I have no idea of  my pace or splits,I do know even w/ thermal gloves on my fuckin' fingers were Novocaine numb!!!!
Given I've done no interval or tempo work I had no idea what to expect of myself over 5k,what I got was a 26th place finish overall in 18.36 and winner of the 50-54 age group.....
24 mins later the gun went off for the 10 mile race........
At least by 8am it was warming up a bit but given my piss poor circulation my fingers were still numb,nowth like 10 miles of open road ahead of you to try and distract you of that.
Said Garmin was now up and running so my mile splits were as follows:
6.34-6.28-6.37-7.31-5.57-6.49-6.56-6.53-6.38-6.26,if you're curious as to the disparity of miles 4 and 5 mile 4 had two major uphills.....and mile five had two major downhills!!!!
22nd overall in 67.02,again a clear winner in the 50-54 age group{although no age group prizes or first Masters award on offer......{really????} off of 6.40 mile pace
If the 5k had been a mild disappointment time wise this made up for it,to put things in perspective on May 5th at Broad St I ran 10 miles in 78.18 off very little/next to no training,fast forward six months and I ran 10 miles in 67.02 after a 5k!!!!!

Sunday easy/recovery 7 miles
The original plan was 5 miles as I planned to have a mile warm up/cool down either side of my races Saturday....that didn't happen so 7 miles it was to round out at 20mpw
If I thought I could blow off one last run{I didn't but given I was up at 5.25am for yesterdays races I could have been forgiven for wanting at least one lie in this weekend!!} I was sadly mistaken as my upper thighs were sore while doing my pre run stretches so"once more into the breech" and once more for old times sake!
Mercifully it was nowhere near as frigid today as yesterday,that said once again  long sleeves and three quarter length bottoms were the order of the day and even at 9.20am I was ruing not going w/ gloves{curse you my piss poor circulation!!!!}thankfully said long sleeve running shirt pulls down to cover my hands on days like these
And that was it,an easy uneventful final run,time to sit back this week,hydrate like it's going out of style,eat well try and get some early nites and not over react every time I sneeze or someone in my general vicinity does likewise!!

Have I done everything I can to prepare for my first marathon in 12 years? I have to hope so,like I said the hey is in the barn now I have to hope for no Septa cock ups race day and warmer temps and a firm belief that everything I've done since August 1st is enough to carry The Pale Kenyan" from start to finish over 26.2 miles.........
To Be Continued......

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Almost There

So as the countdown continues to November 19th and my first marathon in 12 years it was a 3 day/40mpw

Tuesday 11 miles
Having logged 189 miles for October I opted to "go the extra mile" on Tuesday and make it 11 to round out at an even 200 miles.
Had I had leeway I might've pushed the run back to Wednesday but losing the chance of 200 miles was less than having to deal w/ "Trick Or Treaters" as the final mile was me slowing to avoid kids hoped up on Sugar not looking where they were going it got so bad I spent most of the final mile out in the road rather than the sidewalk,having seen my marathon plans almost go up in a puff of smoke two weeks ago w/ a small child clattering into me I think I could be forgiven for being a tad leery and throw in the fact gone 6pm it was now dark I wasn't taking any chances.

Thursday 9 miles
Having gone the "extra mile" Tuesday I was rewarded  w/ a mile less on Thursday
W/ the clocks about to go back Sunday and this being my final mid week run till post marathon I also knew it was my last weekday run in shorts and short sleeves and finishing in daylight,I made sure to take one last lingering look over my shoulder at 6pm as I closed the door behind me to take in the daylight,it'll all be very different come Tuesday November 28th when I resume training post marathon.

Saturday 20 miles
Final 20 miler/long run of the campaign
I was concerned that Friday's evening of revelry at The Electric Factory to see Flogging Molly may have a negative effect on the run,on my feet most of the evening/not hydrating as much as I would sat on my futon, not getting home till almost 1am and getting up at 8am etc etc.......
Out the door by 9.30am for a few miles early on I feared I may've erred in my wardrobe choices,while the sun was out it was a little brisk when not in the direct sunshine but I hedged my bets that a 2.5 hour run between 9.30am-12pm would heat up an hour or so into the run and frankly too many clothes might see me overheat,it's not like I have  sag car/bike behind me to retrieve any layers I chose to peel off so shorts and short sleeves it was.
As is my won't I wore the Garmin even thought this was my third 20 mile run out and back to Manyunk,I pretty much know every mile mark now but I was somewhat shocked to see at mile 4 a 6.53 split followed by a 6.45 split at mile 5.
In 41 years of running I still can't judge pace but the fact I was clipping off sub 7 minute miles w/out feeling it was maybe a feather in my cap.
Reaching the turnaround in just over 1.10 I figured a 2.25 finish was there for the taking and ended up finishing in 2.24.44 off of 7.14 mile pace
For the record my mile splits were:6.55-6.40-7.05-6.53-6.45-6.57-7.06-7.08-7.20-7.20-7.20-7.34-7.29-7.38-7.19-6.58-7.20-8.01-7.25-7.19
And that was all she wrote folks....more or less, this coming week I will go for a 2day/20mpw no midweek training runs,both races at the Rocky Run next Saturday 5k and 10 miles w/ a mile warm up and cool down for 15 miles and a easy/recovery 5 miler on Sunday b4 a week off prior to the marathon.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Embracing The Taper

Ah,the promised land.....the running taper three weeks out from a major race,along w/ the Garmin perhaps the greatest thing to happen to running in my humble opinion!
Technically I was having the same week as the previous week,a 4 day/50mpw w/ another 20 miler on the weekend but only because the week b4 didn't allow for a 5th run but this coming week will only be a 3 day/40mpw and the following week a 2 day/20mpw so yeah.....taper.....

Tuesday 10 miles
Two concerns going into this one,my right upper thigh after last Saturdays collision and a six hour flight to Seattle Saturday afternoon and a five hour flight coming back Monday morning......
Neither thankfully proved to be an issue,my thigh was still a little sore but not as sore as Saturday after the collision and fatigue/jet leg did not get the better of me as I made sure to get my arse out the door as soon as I got home from work to kick off the week how I drew it up.

Wednesday 10 miles
More of the same,nice easy uneventful run,once again 10 miles feels like a "cheat" given the 12,13,15 milers I put in since early August but now I'm reaping the rewards of the hard miles early on in this campaign.
Coming hard on the heels of a Spurs loss I was it's fair to say "a tad pissy" so when I made the turnaround at mile 5 I was cognicent of someone coming up behind me,on some of my early runs when my fitness level wasn't there yet or some of my longer runs when I didn't relish a "pissing contest" I'd let these runners go by me.....not today!
Where my attitude had been"go ahead if you want it that much" this evening it was"you want it?????earn it!!!" and an impromptu tempo run broke out,I did hope said runner would turn off at Lloyd chance,Art Museum....still behind me,Market St bridge still hard on me heels,yours truly had to maintain  tempo mode till I got to the steps of the South St bridge but it was good to know when I have to pick up the pace that gear is still there,post marathon that may get more of a 2.5 miles it was prep for the upcoming Rocky Run 5k on Nov 11th

Thursday 10 miles
Highlight of this run,the crisp evening air,I keep saying at some point,sooner rather than later my long sleeve running shirts and three quarter length bottoms will have to move to the top of the pile when I select my weekly running gear,based on this evening that could be as early as next week....or not,I only have two more mid week runs on tap next Tuesday and Thursday but I won't be playing fast and loose w/ my choices,I've worked too feckin' hard to allow cockiness to undo all my hard work thus far.........

Sunday 20 miles
Ever the Boy Scout I had checked the weather forecast on Saturday and saw rain, from 10am onwards SO I went to bed early Saturday evening and got up at 6am to get my 20 miler in in the hopes of if not beating the rain at least getting the run in.
Dug out a long sleeve running shirt and three quarter length compression shorts{if the fit below my knees are they really shorts???? feel free to discuss amongst yourselves!!!}
Out the door just after 7am b4 sunrise I was relieved to see other like minded souls on the Schuylkill footpath and Kelly Dr....I was also relieved not to see A 5k race gathering in front of Lloyd Hall....this joy lasted briefly as I began to see regatta folk ahead.....fuck!!!
I suspected this could be the case on Thursday run when I saw railing fences along the outside of Kelly Dr after Girard Ave bridge,thankfully at a little after 7.30am there weren't too many folk or rowing boats to negotiate around.....would I be so lucky on the inbound leg?
At a tad past mile 9 it began to rain,hey ho I have little issue w/ the heavens opening once I've gotten into a run,for some reason going out into the rain at the start of the run often causes me and other runners to baulk,as I mentioned to a co worker on Friday what am I going to do marathon morning if I wake up to rain? roll over and go back to sleep????
The rain at least kept the footpath along Kelly Dr reasonably clear.......w/ the notable exception of the section between mile 15 and 16 of my run where I was forced to weave around people,speed up,slow down etc,my biggest concern was not to expand too much energy there and have fuel in the tank for the final 4 miles.......
No worries a 2.28.44 finish off of 7.24 mile pace,10 seconds quicker than last Saturday but in much different conditions and dropping my mile pace from 7.27 to 7.24

A job well done today and a week of good  mileage under my belt,only 40 miles over three days on tap this coming week w/ one final 20 miler to tackle

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Ifs,Ands & Buts

In what was technically my last week to log serious mileage b4 I begin my three week taper I had to settle for a 4day/50mpw,had it not been for my final road trip of the year to Seattle I might've gotten 60 or 65 in but as the saying goes "if my aunt had balls she'd be my uncle".......

Monday 10 miles
Given I was playing w/ a short week to begin w/ I had every intention of getting a rare Monday run in.
The biggest take away from this run was the crisp evening air around 5pm,the like of which I hadn't felt for a while but trust me said cheque is in the mail.
It's questionable if I'll get thro my last three weeks of marathon prep w/out having to pull out long sleeves and the three quarter length bottoms.

Wed 10 miles
Having lost Tuesday to a Spurs Champions League game first and then having"media commitments" post game{I co host a Philadelphia Spurs Podcast "Broad & Hotspur"}I toyed w/ the idea of making this a 15 miler....but w/ Sunday a non starter to begin w/ given the time constraints of my Seattle trip at best now I was looking at 55 miles over 50,was 5 miles going to make that  much difference?
So I settled for another 10 miler,pretty much from here on out it's 10 milers on a week nite w/ 20 milers on the weekend

Thursday 10 Miles
Back out there again out and back along Kelly Dr to a quarter mile beyond Spring Garden bridge,unlike Monday that crisp evening air had warmed up somewhat,I can't be arsed to chop and change running attire each day from sleeveless,to sleeves or long sleeves preferring to make do w/ short sleeves.
The bigger issue was why I didn't request Friday off work for this weekends Seattle trip,had I have done so another 10 miler could've been easily squeezed in giving me a minimum of 60mpw and w/ a tweak of say a 15 miler Wednesday OR 13 Wednesday,12 Thursday I could've had my proverbial cake and eat it...........

Saturday 20 miles
A huge psychological boost getting a 20 miler in,hopefully the first of three over the next three  weekends
However it could have all turned out horribly horribly wrong for me at mile 4,as I made the left hand turn onto Kelly Dr I looked up to see a crowd gathered in front of Lloyd Hall for a 5k race
My first reaction was "oh  fuck I'll have to weave through a crowd of runners.".........SPLAT!!!!!!!
Out of nowhere this kid runs right into my right upper thigh head first,boom he goes down like a sack of potatos,I lose my balance and end up loosing my footing and "kissing the asphalt".........
It could have been ten times worst,if my knee had connected w/ his forehead I dread to think of the outcome.......
I instinctively hit the stop bottom on my Garmin and went back to make sure the kid was ok,he was a little shaken up but no cuts or bruises,his mother was  apologetic to me which helped,I felt terrible but it really wasn't my fault,thankfully good karma came back ten fold, rather than pick myself up and carry on running I stopped made sure he was ok and continued my run despite what feels like some deep bruising on my right upper thigh,upshot I clocked a 2.28.54 20 miler off of 7.27 pace

So a 4day/50mpw but w/ a 20 mile run,I'm now officially on taper time the next three weeks but I'm hopeful of another 4 day/50mpw next week upon my return form Seattle on Monday,thankfully two rest days Sunday & Monday should allow my upper thigh a little recovery time

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Bustin' A Little {Re}Cap In Yo Arse.......

So apologies for the lack of bloggin' of late.......somedays Wifi in the Rift Valley is next to impossible......,ok I've been a cat of meny hats recently and finding time to sit and blog has been difficult,plus I have missed a few runs{tsk tsk bad runner,shame shame!!} so here's recap of all things Pale Kenyan since San Diego.

Between spending long overdue quality time w/ my Sister in LA and then jetlag upon my return and throw in a Stiff Little Fingers gig the week of Sept 25th-Oct 1st just got away from me,glass empty lost miles I can never make up,glass half full less miles on my almost 54 year old legs heading towards the Philly Marathon on Nov 19th.......

Tue Oct 3rd easy 6 miler to "get my feet wet" after an 11 day hiatus,could and would have gone longer but for the Eddie Izzard show at 7.30pm,as a fellow marathon runner I'm sure Eddie would've understood me being late for his show......not so much the audiance at the Merriam Theater......

Wed Oct 4th 15 miler,maybe because anything less than double digit mileage feels like a cheat the 15 miler felt easy after 6 the day b4,that and the fact 15 miles has become "the new normal"

Fri Oct 6th another easy 6 miler having skipped a run on Thursday,if I felt ok during and after the run Wednesday, fatigue caught up w/me Thursday ergo no run but w/ 27 miles on tap 60 miles was still there for the taking w/ a 15 miler Saturday and an 18 miler Sunday......sounds easy when you say it....

Sat Oct 7th Early on I felt 15 was wishful thinking and rather than grind it out at the risk of scuppering the more important 18 miler Sunday I settled for 10 miles and took a half hour soak in the tub w/ cold water in the hopes it would refresh my legs for Sunday.........

Sun Oct 8th BOLLOCKS!!!!! early on it was clear 18 was not happening and the further out I went along Kelly Dr the longer back home my walk in the rain was going to be,in running as in life somedays you just don't have was one of those days.....

At this stage the last thing I needed to do was "throw the baby out w/ the bath water" and or "throw my toys out of the pram" so I took a day off from running or even thinking about running......

Tue Oct 10th 12 miles,again I could've gone longer but for a social event at 8 pm but 12 felt good,at the time I marveled at the continuing Indian Summer we were enjoying in mid October,but as I always say treat those days as if they are the last because sooner rather than later they will be......

Thur Oct 12th So that 12 miler would prove to be potentially my last "Three S's"{shades,sleeveless,shorts} run the rain on Wednesday caused me to baulk at a run that evening,I had reluctantly decided that 5 days a week marathon training had become counter productive and ran up the white flag but swore that come hell or high water I'd run 15 on Thursday and as I stood in my kitchen in the wee hours of Thursday am popping my daily vitamins I was reminded by a quote on the kitchen cabinet"Don't put off till tomorrow what you can do today" and even though it was 5pm b4 I got out the door I was driven to get the miles in.
Grey and overcast I ditched my shades plus knowing  15 miles clocks in at roughly 2 hours and sunset is around 6.30pm I couldn't risk tripping up in the final few miles if I went w/ shades
This would prove to be one of my final 15 milers,I will miss the out and back along West River Dr to Falls bridge and back but it has served me well

Sun Oct 15th,SO I had set the alarm Saturday for 6am w/ every intention of getting up and getting out the door by 6.30am for a 15 miler like I had a few times in Aug and Sept......I guess it was a tad easier then when it was either dawn or daylight,a much harder sell in mid Oct,glass half empty another missed run,glass half full fresher legs for Sundays 18 miler....
W/ 17 miles as my longest run todate I had to nail 18 today and I'm happy to report I did,out the door by 8.30am in grey overcast skies the game plan was 8 min mile pace for a 2.24 time,I managed 7.38 mile pace to clock 2.18.08
I haven't ran 18 miles in 12 years since my last marathon training cycle but w/ my 15 milers providing a solid base I honestly felt comfortable out there this morning.

So the trick now is to log three 20 milers the next three weekends,again easy to sit and type that as it is to mentally write a training schedule while I'm out there running for two plus hours but as we're getting to the "business end" of my training cycle I have to hope putting all my faith in "going long" over 20 miles the next three weekends will be enough to get to the finshline of the marathon in five weeks time.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Short Week,Long Run

Had to settle for a 2 day/27mpw this week as my cross country trek to San Diego and Los Angeles cut into my training,glass half empty I came up short on both mileage and days trained,glass half full weekly long run now upto 17 miles and got a change of scenery to do it!

Monday:10 miles
Hoping to get a 6day/75mpw in required another rare Monday run.....that's what three in a row now?
Settled for an easy/recovery 10 miler to get any lingering crap out of my legs from Sundays half marathon.
While my success at the Rock & Roll 1/2 marathon was/is still pleasing I know I can't "dine out on it" moving forward,had I signed up for the half marathon in Philly in 9 weeks time I could retain the same level of training/mileage that earned me my 1.30.15 to finish 165th out of 8844 and be content......but I signed up for the marathon because having ran 26.2ers in my 20s,30s and 40s I'll kick myself in my 60s if I skipped the 50s so marathon it is,6 more weeks of high mileage and three week taper.

Friday:17 miles
Tuesday & Wednesday got away from me w/ my West Coast trip,it sucks as I wanted to run on tired legs after the half marathon because let's face it over 26.2 miles on Sunday November 19th that's a dynamic I need to be used to however in training as in life shit gets in the way sometimes.
I arrived in San Diego Thursday lunchtime and again would've loved to run but up at "silly o clock" to be at the airport for a 7am flight over 2,367 miles tends not to lend its self to that and so I settled for Google Mapping a 17 run on Friday,at least in a short week increase the long run yeah?
Basically I followed Friars Road for 7 miles till I hit Sea World Drive,hung a right and followed it for another  mile and a half,59.15 at 8.5 miles,turned around and came back the way I came.
It was reassuring to see other runners out there between 9 and 11am,there is always that neurotic feeling you're the only one crazy enough to be out running
Arms got a little heavy w/ 3.5 miles to go but hung tough again w/ 2 miles to go I visualized my regular route and thought about how I get through the final 2 miles there,back to where I  started in 2.06.07 off of 7.25 mile pace.
Considered myself pleased w/ the outcome,a new route was a nice change from the "same old same old" however not always being 100% sure of where I was going lent it's self to some moments of brief second guessing,always felt if I stuck to Friars Rd I couldn't go too wrong,or too far or just plan old lost

Saturday & Sunday alas got away from me,late nite Friday for the U2 show and less than three hours sleep to be up for a Spurs game at San Diego Spurs home bar The Harp at 4am didn't help w/ a run Saturday and after a train ride upto Los Angeles to see my sister Kim I was a little tired to be honest but truth be told could've ran Sunday morning however the reason to add Los Angeles to my west coast trip was to bond w/ a sister I hadn't seen in 14 years and truthfully have never spent any quality time w/ in our 50 plus lives,there will be ample runs upon my return to Philly getting to know my sister and vice versa feels a higher priority right now,running is great but God and Family are greater....

Monday, September 18, 2017

Redemption Song/Am I Really Done W/ Distance?

Sunday was my 28th half marathon since 1984,here's a little insight:
1st half


1st PDR/R&R

Last PDR/R&R

Last half

As you can see Sunday 9.17 tends to play a role in these,when I crossed the finishline in my last PDR{Philadelphia Distance Run as it was known b4 it became part of the Rock & Roll Racing series} 11 years ago I'd struggled to log a 1.25.24 although compared to three weeks prior when the Virginia Beach half had chewed me up and spat me out w/ a 1.30.50 this was an improvement but having began my masters track career I felt it was time to focus on track ergo my quote"I'm done w/ distance running"
It would prove to be a soundbite that was heard around the running community but for the wrong reasons as some arsehole who shall remain nameless got all up in my grill and said"can I have that in writing?" which leant it's self to a terse reply from yours truly and a near arse kickin' for him.......

Clearly my random choice to run Broad St in May followed by my Oddessey Half Marathon in June underlined I was in fact not done w/ distance running on the roads as I felt the need to take care of some unfinished business this fall,however off a semi decent 1.18 Broad St 10 I quote "shat the bed" at Oddessey in a humbling 1.50.18,had I just got lucky at Broad St and bitten off more than I could chew a few weeks later?........

Conditions were grey and overcast when the gun went off at 7.30am w/ yours truly in the  #1 corral of #24,unlike Broad St I would at least get a clear run at it even if the skies were anything but clear.
Again a wise old head on old legs I've ran  the majority of my 28 half marathons on the PDR/R&R course/courses all of them in mid Sept when it's pot luck as to conditions,I've ran in picture book clear skies no heat days,broiling heat,humid as hell,pissing down rain conditions one thing I learnt from my second Boston Marathon in 02 don't worry about things you can't control ie the conditions they are what they are you just have to adapt to them and play the hand you are dealt.
5.58 for the opening mile via my Garmin{perhaps the best thing I ever bought for my running} I was probably 10 seconds behind the official clock as I started mid corral but again to revisit an old Coach GP pearl of wisdom run off of feel not the clock my recent runs had shown low 7 min mile pace when all by my lonesome so now w/ a field around me  work off of them,
6.37 for the second mile which had me roughly adding 7 mins to each mile to guess my next spilt, another 6.37 split on mile 3 heading up the Parkway as I looped passed the start when corrals were still going off.
Afforded myself a slight chuckle as I passed the Ireland flag and then the Kenya flag that adorne the Parkway in alphabetical order.
6.48 on Spring Garden St a new twist to the numerous courses this race has ran b4 heading back down to "old faithful" Kelly Dr,talk about the road well travelled,and maybe some of that familurity leant its self to a 6.23 split.

6.30 at six miles sub 38 min pace followed by splits of 6.41 and 6.45 as I worked my way towards Falls Bridge,which sadly no longer has the lone bagpipe player like it did "back in the day" it always stired my celtic blood hearing him.
Given I began to slow crossing Falls Bridge perhaps I could have used said Bagpipes as my next split at mile 9 was 7.05,not too shabby I was probably sub 59 mins at mile 9 and sub 66 at 10 miles off of a 7.21 split,remember in May at Broad St I ran 1.18 for 10 miles......
Despite now obviously slowing and having runner pass me unlike the previous 9 miles I had one ace up my sleeve on a 15 mile training run Falls Bridge represents 7.5 miles to go today Falls Bridge was 4.5 miles to the finish at the Art Museum steps and those recent 6.30am 15 milers not to mention Thursdays 16 miler were going to carry me home.

7.25 for mile 11 sure each mile marker felt it was taking longer to appear on the horizon but I just reminded my self of each run home when I come up the steps at South St bridge and get to the traffic lights at the junction of Spruce st and the on/off ramp of I76....two more miles,two more miles....
7.38 for mile 12 but my heavy legs were lifted by a dj spinning the classic Rage Against The Machine track "Bulls On Parade" it is the Rock & Roll Half Marathon and hearing that and seeing the back of the Art Museum ahead was all I needed.
7.28 as I hit the 13 mile mark,once a track runner,always a track runner I went into full blown sprint mode up the slight incline as Carl Lewis once famously said "I just wanted to know I left it all out there".......

1.30.15,even w/ the shit show that was Oddessey in June not my slowest ever half,faster than Virginia Beach 11 years ago,faster than the torrid East London half in 85{1.36.29} and an old PDR in  the early mid 90s of 1.33.12.
Clearly the hard work of the last six weeks paid off but no time to rest on my laurals,9 weeks to go b4 the Philly Marathon which means another 6 weeks of high end training b4 a three week taper and doing it all over again,in old math they say take your half marathon time,double it and add 10 mins....a 3.10 marathon on Nov 19th?????

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Going For The One

A different week for yours truly,Monday & Friday runs,runs under double digits,and a 16 miler....lead on McDuff,lead on.....

Monday 8 Miles
A rare Monday run,and an even rarer run in single digits but as often w/ my madness there was method involved.
Easy 8 to kick off the week in the hopes of  Monday-Friday 62 miles w/ Sundays half Marathon rounding me out at 75 mpw
No Garmin on this run,I could run out and back to Lloyd Hall w/ my eyes closed and know it was 8 miles to begin w/ and given the longer runs to follow this needed to be a gentle pace,the fact I was practically dancing coming up the steps off the Schuylkill footpath leant an air of ease to procedure.

Tuesday 15 Miles
Not too long ago I was huffing & puffing my way through 12 miles,frankly 15 has become quote"the new normal"
Again the road well tested I opted to forgo the Garmin but it felt easy.
Highlight of the run heading up Spruce St passed Penn I spot a cluster of wannabe hoodlums ahead of me forcing a pedestrian to go around them,as she did the one nearest to her jumped at her to try and scare her.......didn't take an Ivy League grad to figure what was coming next as I passed them.......
As "cuz" jumped out at me I leaned towards him throwing a mean left hook that had him back peddling frantically....
"I'll fuck you up old man" was his best comeback as I continued up Spruce St"fuck off junior " my reply as he probably considered donating his shorts to the nearest flower bed as I can't be 100% sure....but I'm sure I smelt shit!!!!!!
Don't fuck w/ me kid less you wanna wear your arse cheeks as earings cos my foot will Kick Your Arse!!!!!!

Wednesday No Run
Fuck! Best laid plans of mice & men,an impromptu podcast post Spurs Champions League game meant it was 5.50pm when  I got home and a 2 hour 16 miler between 6-8pm a tough sell...w/ hindsight maybe I could've done 10 miles????

Thursday 16 Miles
Got my long run for the week in and how!
Out in 59.23 back in 61.37 for a 2.00.52 time
Almost picture perfect conditions at 80 degrees as I went out and back along Kelly Dr,7.5 miles at Falls Bridge and rather than hanging a left went straight for another half mile b4 turing and heading back
Upon my return from my West Coast jaunt next week may revisit this route w/ an extra mile tacked on to get my 18 miler in

Friday 8 Miles
Wow a Monday & Friday run this week!!!
Even w/ my 6 day/75mpw shot I felt it wise to get the "crap" out of my legs w/ an easy 8 on Friday b4 a rest day Saturday and then Sundays half marathon

And so it's all set up now for Sunday,and next week I can hopefully increase my long run to 17 miles

Sunday, September 10, 2017

You Can't Always Get What You Want

Glass half empty I only managed a 4 day/54.5mpw,glass half full I upped my long run to 15.5 miles as the magic  numbers are now 1/10 for the Rock & Roll Half Marathon/Philly Marathon

Monday 15.5 miles
Taking full advantage of Labour Day I got out and ran since Mondays tend to be a "no go zone" due to work.
Since Monday was a holiday I slept till 9am and didn't hit the sidewalks that lead me to the Art Museum loop till 10.30am  which is later than the 6.30am runs I've been doing on the weekends and thus warmer,the sweat stains on my sleeveless running shirt bore that out.
Having done the "out and back" 7.5/7.5=15 miles a few times I was curious to see what the whole loop would come out to,I knew it'd be just over 15 miles so thanks to a tweak here and there I was able to round up to 15.5 miles in 2.08.53 off of 8.19 mile pace

Tuesday Rest Day,given I didn't know what to expect at work w/ Tuesday becoming my Monday I hedged my bets that I'd be balls arsed busy....I wasn't as busy as I thought but frankly my upper thighs were a tad sore from Mondays run so perhaps Rest Day was the way to go

Wednesday Rained out....bugger!
I'm no stranger to running in the rain....I grew up in London for fecks sake however w/ Philly R&R1/2 now eleven days away maybe playing "fast and loose" w/ the conditions was not the way to go and when the heavens opened around 6pm I would've been a few miles from home and shelter and frankly I've worked too damn hard since Aug 1st for next Sunday so while I lost a day I may've saved myself a few between now and Sept 17th

Thursday 14 miles
The most noticeable thing for me on this run was how much cooler conditions were compared to previous runs out and back along either Kelly Dr or West River Dr after work during August,to underline that fact on Aug 16th I ran a 13 miler in 1.48.03 off 8.37 mile pace,tonite I clocked 1.48.24 off 7.44 mile pace.....over 14 miles,yes things have cooled off but I've also gotten more speed,strength and stamina under me,this should bode well moving forward.

Saturday 14 miles
A delightfully crisp 55 degrees greeted me at 6.30am as I headed out for this run,switched from sleeveless to short sleeves but also w/ next Sundays gun time at 7.30am I probably need to be up 6am so it was good to get a "lay of the land" in that respect.
When I reached the turnaround in 53.06 I was twenty seven seconds up on Thursday time,neither here nor there in some respects but always nice to feel you're getting faster.....
1.47.01 off of 7.38 mile pace and almost by default a seasons best,not sure how many more 14 milers are on tap but if there are more 1.47.01 is the time to try and beat

Sunday 11 miles
Not quite what I had hoped for to be honest,the aim was 16.5 miles to round out at 60mpw.
While I'm happy to go"out and back" on either drive the prospect of say running 8.5 miles on a 7.5 loop and then circling back in the direction I just came is....frankly a bit fuckin' boring so unless say I don't know the Swedish Bikini Team are cheer leading the route.....I can dream.....I'm looking at going "off book"
W/ hindsight maybe doing the hills of the Belmont Plateau was my undoing this morning,maybe dancing my arse off at The Trocadero last nite to UB40 didn't help either but either way when I worked my way back down to West River Dr via Sweet Briar Lane,Landsdown Ave,Avenue Of The Republic and Belmont Ave my legs said no mas and I had to settle for 11 miles in 1.31.22 off 8.14 mile pace.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing and the next time I look to extend my run I'll nix the Belmont Plateau and stay on Montgomery Dr to loop back down to West River Dr,this however won't be for a few weeks,next weekend is the Philly R&R 1/2 and the following weekend I'll be google mapping a potential 17 miler out in San Diego.....something along the coastline would be nice.......Swedish Bikini Team optional.....but very welcome....just saying!

Monday, August 28, 2017

Going Out In Style

Another 5day/65mpw in the books as the magic numbers are reduced to 3/12 for the Half Marathon/Marathon.

Monday: Rest Day

In what potentially was the last of the "dog days" of August I was able to grind out a 1.41.23 12 miler off of 8.27 mile pace.
It was like running in a Sauna out there on Tuesday to the point where my end game was just to get the distance in,w/ one of my two Rest Days already taken sitting out a run "because it was hot,humid and hazy" was not an option if I wanted a second week of 65s on my resume.
Hopefully the Thunder & Lightning that followed my run five hours later signaled the end of the heat and least for August.

The difference in conditions was easily noticable but the fact I had to grind my way through 12 miles in 1.41.23 on Tuesday but came out on Wednesday and clocked 1.42.52 off of 7.54 for 13 miles confirms the heat not being an issue and lends its self to the fact after weeks of 36,60 & 65 miles I'm beginning to get the measure of my distances......shame I'll be moving up again next week but in order for  a Revolution there has to be Evolution first and I feel I'm continuing to evolve.....ask several people who know me they'll confirm I always Revolt w/out fail........#haters

Since I plan to continue  up the mileage ladder the next 9 weeks or so tonite was billed as my final 12  miler untill late October when I {hopefully} begin my taper,where as my Season's Best for 13 miles continues to fall each time out my SB over 12 has remained untroubled at 1.34.33 since June 7th,could I trouble it tonite on my Summer finale?????
Cop That In The Bollocks For Starters!!!! 1.31.33 off of 7.38 mile pace,three whole minutes shaved off my time
The other "highlight" from this run,around a mile and a quarter into the run "Cuz" comes running up to me waving a Cigarette "yo my man,got a light"???? DUDE I'm running do I look like I smoke for fuck sake?????what do you think I do at the turnaround point on these runs,whip out a Marlboro and exault the joys of "flavour country" b4 returning to my runs?.......If God hates Ugly he must detest Dumb!!!

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday:13 miles
Now you're just taking the piss!! on May 31st post Broad St but pre Oddessey Half Marathon I logged 1.58.01 off of 9.08 mile pace for 13 miles,this morning.......1.38.39 off of 7.36 mile pace.
Of the meny "pearls of wisdom" my former coach GP installed in me between 07-09 was the time honoured:somedays you need to forget about the watch/clock and just run off of feel
Today was one of those days other than the almost obligotory 1 mile and 2 mile splits that I usually check to gauge tempo,rhythm early on I think my last look at the watch was at the turnaround as I continued this tear of sub 8 min mile pace this week.

Another 6.30am 15 miler as my schedule wouldn't allow otherwise but to be honest I'm loving how cool things are when I run at this hour plus it's good prep for my three upcoming races which are probably 7/7.30am starts.
Another run where I kind of forgot about the Garmin and just focused on feel,at the turnaround at 7.5 miles I clocked 60.49 so around 2.01/2.02 pace....however having gone 2.00.42 last week and having had a banner week this week minus Tuesday when I was forced to run tactically I figured why not go for it?
1.58.43 off of 7.37 mile pace to not only round out a second week of 65 milers but also send me into next weeks proposed 70mpw{13-14-13-15-15} w/ my confidence still rising.

I said honestly two weeks ago off my 60mpw that had the Rock & Roll Half Marathon been the following week I'd have been fucked,now off of two 65mpws I feel much better about my chances of a half decent time,lets not get carried away a week ago I was having to dig deep mentally and physically over 12 & 13 milers and this coming week I'm ramping it up a little but hopefully next weekend I'll look back on a 70mpw as no biggie

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Hangin' Tough,Diggin' Deep

I'm happy to sit here and report that I did complete a 5 day/65mpw but it was far from easy......but then again as I always say if Marathons were easy everyone would be running them!
Here's a play by play of the week that was.

Monday: Rest Day
Tuesday:12 miles
Any questions about my committment to "the cause" were hopefully answered today as I stuck both fingers up to the fact Accu Weather were predicting a 60% chance of rain between 5pm and 6pm as I kicked off the week w/ a 1.38.29 12 miler off of 8.13 mile pace
Ever the Boy Scout I was prepared for the fact it was widely predicted there would be rain so I swopped bandanna for baseball cap,shades for regular glasses and sleeveless for short sleeves.
For the opening 3.5-4 miles this looked to have been an error on my part as I was sweating buckets under grey and overcast skies and humidity.....and then the heavens opened to the point I removed my glasses as seeing out of them was near impossible.

Wednesday :13 miles
Kinda churlish to talk about a "season's best" over 13 miles but having begun the season w/ a 1.58 plus for 13 miles and then lowered that to 1.53.07 on June 4th the bar was in fairness set somewhat low that said Wednesdays 1.48.03 off of 8.18 mile pace was at least a step in the right direction.
If Tuesdays 12 miler had seen me go off too quick and go into survival mode I at least got my pacing right from the get go to log a 13 miler,only my third of this cycle but in order to go after 15 milers I need to get comfortable over 13 miles first......

Thursday:12 miles
Hot and humid,granted it's not the typical "Dog Days" that August can and have thrown up but throw in that last week my 12 milers more or less came from 9.15am starts this week I was getting up at 5.25am,putting in a full day at work where I'm on my feet  most of if not all day  b4 coming home around 4.30pm/4.45pm and going right back out to run.
Early on I felt I was having to dig deep and be mentally tough as well as physically,where was this mental and physical toughness in May,June and my lone run in July?
The further out along Kelly Dr I went the further back I was gonna have to walk home if I "bonked", I took each mile one at a time willing myself to the next mile marker and somehow reached the finishline in front of my appartment in 1.43.33 off of 8.37,the fact I finished was a moral victory.

Friday: Rest Day

Saturday:13 miles
Aided by the fact I was able to sleep till 8 am b4 heading out around 9.20am may go a ways to explaining my 1.47.26 off of 8.16 mile pace
I never thought for a split second I was going to "crush" these 12 & 13 milers but untill such a time I feel comfortable w/ them I will have to hold off on upping them to 15 milers,if I can go from 60mpw to 65mpw this week and again next week.....yeah,yeah yeah"if my Aunt had balls she'd be my Uncle" then at this point I feel upping my weekly mileage to 70mpw will be prudent b4 I tackle 75mpw,eventually 15 milers will be my "bread & butter" runs w/ the Sunday long run going,16,18,20 as I look to raise my weekly mpw to 76,78 and 80 b4 eventualy working my taper down the scale and while "big trees grow from little acorns" I have to feel comfortable at 12 & 13 miles b4 15 miles becomes my "distance du jour".......

Sunday:15 miles
Stop the goddamn presses!!! 15 miler in 2.00.42 off of 8.02 pace!!!!
Off of yesterdays 1.47.26 I figured 2.06 was respectable today if not w/in my reach,was it the fact I got up at 6am and was out the door by 6.30am when conditions were a delightful 68/69 degrees that I came close to going sub 2.00 right off the bat?
Was it my Kenyan running vest that inspired a Rift Valley/Maasai Warrior performance? fucked if I know but the fact is I felt I crushed this run
Cooler conditions for sure were a help,I could see me getting up at 6am again on the weekends to get my run/runs in to accomodate my Philly Spurs/Broad & Hotspur commitments
My mile splits were:7.47-7.41-8.39-8.07-8.16-8.11-8.09-8.07-8.02-8.00-7.58-7.53-8.03-8.04-7.44
Where as most of the week on the second half of my runs I've felt I've gone into "survival mode" today as the numbers back up I went into"fuck it I'm having some of this" mode
Vintage Shamrock Warrior"? prehaps too soon to tell,maybe the planets joined up in a "perfect storm" and I got lucky or maybe after grinding it out all week and grittin' my teeth and diggin' deep I got rewarded either way I am looking forward to the coming week,and more importantly next Sunday,as I type my Kenyan running vest is soaking in the bathroom sink but trust me I will be throwing it on at 6.30am next Sunday in the hope of more of the same........

Monday, August 14, 2017

Sing This W/ Me This Is Sixty......

If the previous week had been  me going Billy Bragg and going "Back To Basics" then last week was me going  ''Billy Big Bollocks" and laying down a blueprint for the weeks to come as I managed five twelve milers between Tuesday and Sunday.
Granted it was a tad easier to do when I wasn't getting up at "silly o clock" (5.25am) during the week and putting in a full day at work then coming home to log 12 milers.....that task will be this coming week,but having laid the blueprint for that last week in theory that task should be easier he typed on Monday........

So here's the play by play of last week
Monday: Rest Day
Tuesday: 12 miles
I blew off Monday when I awoke to the sound of b4 someone goes all Rachel Reiley on me and says "that was a proper bottle job by The Shamrock Warrior"  let me state for the record the previous Wednesday I logged a 6 miler in the rain,granted I had little to no leeway w/ my schedule that week so  I had to make do but given I now had a whole week and upon consulting the local weather discovered no rain in the forecast till possibly Saturday I felt why run in the rain when I don't have to? I suspect there will be plenty of runs between now and Nov 12th where I won't have that luxury.....but isn't that why God created Waterproof running clothes afterall!!!
Up by 8am and stretched and out by 9.15am it felt odd to be out running this early as most of if not all my midweek runs are doing around 5pm,I could get used to the cooler temps and less traffic both pedestrian and motorist
1.37.51 off an 8.09 mile average,not too shabby given prior to the viral infection and post Garmin era my  pervious 12 milers were:1.34.33-1.36.58-1.39.10-1.39.19-1.39.20
Something to build on over the coming days

Wednesday:12 miles
A slightly later start given it was 9am b4 I finally answered the call of my alarm and not the 8am I was able to  galvanize myself for the whole week.
That 10.20am start meant the temps were a littler warmer and while not quite the "Dog Days" that August can be it was still warm enough to work up a decent sweat out there.
1.44.32 off of 8.43 mile pace,my slowest time to date BUT unlike in May,June and my lone run in July when the going got tough I didn't buckle which told me my head and heart were now truly "in the game" I pride myself on being a tough SOB where my running is concerned and not the type to run up the white flag at the first sign of trouble,sadly that version of me had gone AWOL in May & June but looks to be back now in August as I approach the "business end" of my season.

Thursday:12 miles
1.40.45 off of 8.24 pace,again not earth shattering and were the Philadelphia Rock & Roll Half Marathon this weekend I'd be fucked frankly....but since I still have five weeks to  hone my skills I could be less hard on myself,frankly back to back to back 12 milers given my near six weeks of inactivity was quite a coup I felt and again while not feeling great I never contemplated stopping so that in of its self felt like a moral victory.....and there haven't been too meny of them since Broad St and some of my initial 12 and 13 miles in May prior to the Oddesey Half Marathon where the wheel came off in spectacular fashion,that old adage "you learn nothing from a defeat" is in my opinion bollocks,you can learn a lot if you're honest w/ yourself and what I learnt the hard way on June 11th was basing expections on former times was my downfall......I won't be that cavilier again any time soon

Friday:12 miler
The time honoured " the spirit was willing but the flesh was weak" saying  came home to roost today,at the 2 mile mark I had a "uhoh" moment from the knees mile 4 I had another "uhoh" moment,only this time from the knees up and yet somehow I continued to dig deep mentally and physically over the remaining 8 miles to log a 1.43.27 time off of 8.37 pace
Maybe four in a row was too big an ask? although the tell tale sign of yellow urine in the afternoon after I crashed out on my futon for three hours indicated dehydration and a need to drink more water during the day.
I am proud of the fact I hunkered down and kept going when bailing seemed so much easier,I kept telling myself "one more mile" and w/ 2.5 miles to go began breaking it down into half mile incruments,whatever it took to get home and finish.
A well earnt rest day was coming.

Saturday: Rest Day

Sunday:12 miles
W/ four 12 milers under my belt and a much needed rest day I now had the option of going "long" on Sunday and trying to log 15 miles,sadly I didn't have the option of being able to run mid morning due to my Philly Spurs/Broad & Hotspur comitments and thanks in no small part to the fact Septa can't run a #34 trolley schedule if their lives depended on it it was 1.30pm when I got home and 1.45pm b4 I was on the road to run in the height of the afternoon sun.
It would've been all too easy to go for 12 miles knowing I had  four under my belt already so I chanced my arm and set out to run 15.....
Sadly that bravardo somewhat blew up in my face by the time I reached mile 11 and having kept my mile splits below 9 mins  up until then mile 11 thro 12 ballooned up to 10 plus although in fairness I had already decided to call it quits at mile 12 anyway which may've slowed me even more.
1.42.00 off 8.30 pace and unfortunately a 3 mile "walk of shame" home however I had logged a 5day/60mpw so I couldn't be too hard on myself.....I suspect there are plenty of others who will do that for me,however the fact remains I've gone from zero to sixty miles in two weeks (36/60) so fuck them!!!

W/ 12 milers logged I hope this coming week to tweak things to 12/13/12/13/15 for a 65mpw,I believe w/ a pair of 13 milers under me the "leap" to 15 miles next Sunday morning( Philly Spurs kick off is at 11am and even w/ a 10.15-10.30 meeting pre game I can probably get up at 6/6.30am easy to say now!!!)should be least in theory anyway!!!!!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Running Free,Running Naked........

Now that I have your attention allow me to explain the lack of activity on the road/sidewalk and blog the past several weeks.
So I got sick after the Odyssey Half Marathon and picked up a Viral infection which screwed me for running,I also began to feel fatigued and after a few days of just not having the "get up and go" to get up and run I began to fear the worst and wonder if my Anemia had returned w/ a vengeance.
Eventually I scheduled a doctors appointment,under went a number of test including checking my right leg for blood clots due to the Varicose Veins that are quite pronounced on that calf.......all tests came back negative, a script for the Viral Infection  and the all clear to resume training.......cept now I was in the midst of my Orlando & Nashville road trips,and while I did pack my running gear for Orlando it just didn't happen,a lot of late nites and too fackin early mornings,the week of Harrison and Nashville I knew said cloth had been cut way too thin so I made up my mind the day after my return from Nashville it was the time honoured "shit or bust" w/ only seven weeks till the Philadelphia Rock & Roll Half Marathon and sixteen till the Philly Marathon.

I recall "back in the day" when Cher was a spokesperson for Ballys Health Club and in one of her commercials she said"there are a hundred excuses not to go to the gym,but at the end of the day that's all they are,excuses",I'd blown through all the excuses between July 8th my last abortive run that I never blogged and now Aug 1st, it was time to knuckle down.
And w/ that upon my return home from work I got out of my work clothes,into my running gear and out the door,no Garmin{hence the running naked case you were wondering what I meant!!!!!} this was NOT the run to be pissballing around w/ mile splits,pace or even how many calories I was burning off{sidebar I give a rats arse about the latter but it's a stat the Garmin throws up} this was a run to see if I'd gotten over my heavy breathing and heavy legs that had lead me to taking a "time out".

The game plan was an easy 5 miler Tuesday......and if that went well 6 miler Wednesday,7 miler Thursday,8 miler Saturday,10 miler Sunday.....but if I continued to encounter the issues that scuppered my runs in June & July I was well and truly bollocksed since the Anemia issue had been taken off the table and if I was still struggling now what???
Again early into the run my breathing felt laboured but thankfully my legs held up over 5 miles,the aborted 8 miler on July 8th saw me crap out at mile 4 so if this was a small victory it was none the less "one in the win column" and I could move forward.
Wednesdays 6 miler was more of the same,again my breathing felt laboured early on into the run but my legs bought into the "feet don't fail me now mantra" and another rung back up Jacob's Ladder had been climbed.

A funny thing thing happened on Thursday's run again I felt I was breathing heavy at the start of the run but somewhere along the Schuylkill footpath after the 2 mile mark I stopped noticing it,it reminded me of my formative years as a runner when I'd get a stitch,the more I thought about it the more it bothered me,if I stopped thinking about it it would eventually go away,ditto for the quote unquote "breathing issues"is it possible I created an issue out of nothing? oh trust me the Viral Infection was real,the nasty lime green/yellow shite I hacked off my lungs was real but maybe I imagined something w/ my breathing that wasn't really an issue,till now I've been blessed w/ good breathing while running,trust me I've had the misfortune to have"professional heavy breathers" behind me in race,I recall a 8 mile loop race in Scranton where the guy behind me sounded like he was making an obscene phone call his breathing was so heavy!!!!

Thursday marked the first.....but DEFINITELY not the last"it's a fuckin red light jerk off" at the junction of Woodlands Walk and University Avenue,between now and my last scheduled training run on Nov 12th I would bank on several more,I know I'm cute but that does not mean I wish to adorn the hood of someones car as a hood ornament!!!!
Felt good to be up early{8am} on Saturday and out the door by 9.15am to run,unlike during the week when I'd nixed my knee strenghtening exercises as I was eager to reestablish a routine I made sure they were done along w/ my achilles stretches,I don't need either of those issues derailing me now I'm back training
Sunday saw me back in double figure at 10 miles for the first time in a while,it felt good....but lets not get carried away,w/ six week to go I still need to get proficient over 13 miles to make a fair fist of the half marathon and then 15 weeks to get up to 26.2 shape but if this was about seeing if my body was on the same page as my spirit then yes this was a triumph.

A 5 day/36 mile week,fingers crossed this coming week I take advantage of a week off work to watch Worlds and clean "Chez Alfie" and also get out in the mid mornings to take care of some 12 milers.....and who knows maybe a 15 miler this space!!!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Heavy Legs,Heavy Heart

I only managed two runs last week a 12 miler on Wednesday followed by a 4 miler on Sunday....Sunday was meant to be a long run but at just over 3.25 miles in I knew the proverbial goose was cooked and made it 4 miles and stuck a fork in it.

As is my won't Mondays and Fridays are no go due to work,Tuesday was day three of the 95 degree temps and aside from sore legs from Sundays half marathon the quality of air was thick...walking two blocks from the trolley to my front door at 4.30pm was an effort so I prudently called a  no mas on a run.

Wed was a shake out run w/ the lingering effects of Sundays Oddessey Half Marathon still in my legs,however a 1.39.20/8.17 mile pace seemed to shake off the last of the crap in my legs.....sadly my head and heart failed to get the memo!

Thurs I was reeling from the blahs so much so that upon arriving home I just said "feck it" and decamped on the futon,having missed Tuesdays  run a 5 day/65mpw was shot so why sweat it now?

Sat got blown out b4 I even had a chance,as is my won't on the weekends I set the alarm for 8am and aim to be "upwardly mobile" by 9.30am so I can quaff a morning cuppa and chow down on a Cliff Bar b4 stretching and heading out the body said fuck dat noise and slept till 11.30am!!!

Sun I had every intention to run a 15 miler but by mile 3.25 my legs weren't having it and thus ended a 2 day/16 mile week.

Between the hangover from Oddessey,the heatwave I also had to contend w/ another Erica anniversary,Friday being her b'day and also 31 years since we got engaged in a restaurant in Greenwich on her 21st b,day.
You'd think after all these years I'd be over it by now but awoken from that "Erica Dream" on Monday morning the tone for my week was set,no wonder I suffered intestinal issues Friday evening and Saturday lunch time as my stomach tends to give out on me and has been doing so for the past 29 years.

I hope following Sundays U2 show and I get done bawling my eyes out after Bono sings "W/ Or W/out You" I can put the "ghosts of first loves/wife" behind least till the next Erica anniversary comes along and wakes me from a sound sleep.....

Sunday, June 11, 2017

One Step Forward...& Two Steps Back......

W/C 6.5
Monday 6.5 Rest Day
Tuesday 6.6 12 miles: 1.36.58 8.05 mile pace 1332 Calories burned
Wednesday 6.7 12 miles:1.34.33 7.53 mile pace 1357 Calories burned
Thursday 6.8 10 miles:1.21.32 8.09 mile pace 1112 Calories burned
Friday 6.9 Rest Day
Saturday 6.10 6 miles:51.27 8.35 mile pace 678 Calories burned
Sunday 6.11: Half Marathon 1.50.18 8.25 mile pace 1432 Calories burned
5 day/54mpw*
*1/2 marathon plus mile warm up......too feckin knackered for mile cool down.......

So,Iced Tea glass half full a five day training week complete w/ back to back to back days Tue thro Thur which is the blueprint moving forward
Glass half empty,slowest ever half marathon by some 14 minutes..........
I'm not the type to "gloss over" the bad days at the office.....or conveniently get too busy to post a blog so I will get to the "nuts and bolts of this mornings......monumental fuck up in due course.

As for the week leading upto today,Wednesday's 1.34.33/7.53 12 miler gave me optimism that my pre race aim of a 1.30 half marathon was doable....a week after I struggled like hell to log a 13 miler,as stated by yours truly "a week is a long time in running" sadly as it turned out this morning a few days in running can also be a LONG time......
I knew I was in for a  LONG race day when I arrived at Memorial Hall in Fairmont Park at 6.30am for a 7am start and inexplicably involuntarily lost my morning Earl Grey Tea,I know I'm prone to pre race nerves{I have said in the past 41 years "I'd be nervous if I wasn't nervous"} pre race but it's been a while since I've thrown up....then again it's almost 11 years since I last ran a half marathon.
Perhaps foolishly I believed a 1.30 half marathon was there for the taking,given only five weeks ago at Broad St I ran a 1.18.18 10 miler I might have done  better to aim for a 1.42 finish but for reasons best known to myself I felt a 1.30 was doable and thus my undoing was sealed.

Off a 6.28 opening mile I worked my way upto 14th.......and then dramatically slid backwards through the field over the following 12 miles,it's been a while since I've ran that "boneheaded" a race.....I hope it's a while b4 I run another.
6.52 for mile 2 in keeping w/ the 1.30/7 min mile pace,even at 7am it was already hot and humid and pouring water over my head was the order of the day,19th at mile 3 w/ a 6.36 mile as we exited Fairmont Park and onto West River Dr.
27.20 at mile 4 thanks to a 7.24 mile,I have to say I'm only recanting my mile splits via my Garmin as during the race I was too focused on each mile ahead of me.
Up and over Strawberry Mansion bridge,sadly out on the bridge and asphalt and not the wood of the sidewalk,I could have used the "give" the wood would have given my legs.

8.09/35.29 at mile 5 I was already in "no mans land" and to add further insult to injury the 1.35 mile pacer went by me,the 1.30 pacer had gone by me b4 Strawberry Mansion bridge....and the old adage that"once the toothpaste is out of the tube you can't put it back in" was coming home to rule the roost.
8.23/43.52 at mile 6 en route to a halfway split of 48.41.....a potential 1.37 which was already slower than my previous pw {personal worst} over 13.1 the now infamous East London Half Marathon  of 1985 1.36.29.....but frankly at this point I would have willingly taken it as the first wave of "do you want to drop out?" washed over a 41 year career I have only DNF'd {did not finish} once and that was tactical as I had a race the following day but I knew as I made the turn onto Kelly Drive a long morning was about to get longer.......

7.49/51.01 at mile 7 b4 a 8.45/59.46 at mile 8.....and then I stopped.......
Remarkably I got through the whole Broad St 10 w/out stopping but it wasn't as hot and humid May 7th as it was this morning.
My options were:throw myself at the mercy of a First Aid motorized stretcher and beg for a ride back to the finish,deviate off Kelly Dr and walk over Strawberry Mansion bridge to get to Fairmount Park w/out having to run to and over Falls bridge,claim I thought it was a Duathlon and swim across the Schuykill river......OR suck it up,put on my big boy running pants and get the fuck on w/ it......#thelatter

9.43/69.29 at mile 9,maybe crossing Falls bridge and getting on W.River Dr would inspire me to dig deep and make my way to Fairmount Park.....or not!!!!!
Despite a 9.13 mile that had me at 1.18.42 at mile 10 which was close to the 1.18.18 I'd ran at BSR I stopped to walk again,however I was hell bent on making this the last stop...which might explain the 12.11 split for mile 11/ 1.30.53....a time I had foolishly believed would be close to my finishing time.

8.48/1.39.01 at mile 12 as the slow painful grind uphill into Fairmont Park sapped the final life out of my already tired legs off W.River Dr,on a good day I would have relished the challenge but today I was too  knackered to curse the feckin ejit who designed to course!!!!
1.48.07 at mile 13 off a 9.06 mile as the  finish was now just ahead and despite having "left it all out there" I found a final vestige of a kick to cross the line in 1.50.18......I couldn't even brake!!

Post mortem yes the heat was a bitch....but guess what? the Philly Rock & Roll Half Marathon is in September when the potential for heat and humidity are high so I won't use that as a crutch.
At the end of the day I allowed my ego to run amok{maybe my ego should have ran this half marathon today??!!!} w/ hindsight{a wonderful thing no????!!!} 1.30 for the Philly R&R 1/2 would have been a more realistic target off my 1.18.18 BSR,and along those lines 1.42 today was more realistic....which given the heat would've made this mornings 1.50.18 an easier pill to swallow......

What's done is done,leaving me w/ sleepless nights and not my opponents....but count me out at your own peril,the F in Kevin F Forde is actually for Francis but right now...and for the next 14 weeks till Sept 17th it's gonna stand for have been put on notice.....

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Zero To Fifty

Ok,so lets get the analytics out of the way first,the week in numbers:
WC 5.29
Mon 12 miles 1.39.10 8.16 mile pace 1343 calories burned
Tue rest day
Wed 13 miles 1.58.01 9.08 pace 1457 calories burned
Thur rest day
Fri rest day
Sat 12 miles 1.39.19 9.08 pace 1335 calories burned
Sun 13 miles 1.53.07 8.42 pace 1448 calories burned

So a 4 day/50mpw not too shabby given 5 weeks ago I wasn't even running and 4 weeks ago I ran 10 miles at the Broad St Run.
Yes I had hoped to make this my first 5day/65mpw but frankly the trashing my legs took during Wednesdays initial 13 miler had me back tracking in double quick fashion.....however upon reflection it was prehaps a tad overly ambitious on my part,each week{more or less} I have upped my weekly runs,1 run 4 weeks ago,2 runs the following week,sadly the next week my tally was 1 due to a mish mash of events inside  my time frame,however last week I managed three runs so,w/ hindsight maybe 4 was the way to go this in order to have my{cheese}cake and eat it next week to up my mpw to 60 and incorporate my race I will have to run 6 days but I will be able to go 50/60mpw in back to back weeks b4 hopefully settling into a 9 week patern of 5 day/65mpw from mid June to mid August b4 tweaking things  for the marathon in November.

Mon 12 miles
Taking full advantage of Memorial Day I got a run in on Monday,given my work loads Mondays and Fridays are hard to get home b4 5pm and what w/ 15/20 mins of stretching getting out the door at 5.20pm to run 10,12,14 miles is a tough making the proverbial hay while the sun shone I threw in a 12 this week mid morning.
Overcast grey conditions suited me as I was coming off an aborted 12 miler on Sunday,prehaps back to back to back 12s were too ambitious but at least I now had three consecutive days under my belt as sooner rather than later that will have to be the norm.

Wed 13 miles
They say "a week in politics is a long time" so is a few days in running,w/ 4 12 milers and 2 11.5 milers under my belt I thought adding an extra mile wouldn't be a big ask.........wrong!!!!
Granted being up since 5.25am and "slinging skids" all day hadn't helped any but that's gonna be the deal moving forward so it's pointless using that as a I'll blame the 79 degree weather!!!
I knew b4 I made the turn at 6.5 miles in the shadow of Strawberry Mansion bridge I was gonna have to "dig deep" both mentally and physically over the inbound 6.5 miles to get home and  w/ next to no knee lift or leg turnover  on the run home I was briefly tempted to call it quits at mile 12........but thought better of it and gritted my teeth and ground out the final mile,pretty it was not,gutsy it was and somedays in running and in life you'll take gutsy over pretty.

Sat 12 miles
Somewhat habbit forming,my third Saturday run in a row,methinks the boy want to run afterall!!!!
Another mid morning run out and back along Kelly Dr under grey skies and often intermitting showers,which at least kept the temps cool,not that time was the issue but compared to Monday I was 9 seconds slower overall and a second per mile off,that said knowing I would be coming back w/in 24 hours to tackle another 13 miler it was maybe prudent to keep something in the tank for Sunday?

Sun 13 miles
Boo frickin ya!!!
Almost 5 mins faster than Wednesday w/ a considerable reduction in pace 9.08 vs 8.42,granted I wasn't dealing w/ 79 deg temps or been up since 5.25am....however  I had the luxury of a rest day b4 Weds run unlike back to back 12 and 13 milers.
Thanks to fancy gizmo on my wrist I can look back at my mile splits today:7.49 7.46 8.33 8.17 8.26 8.26 8.36 8.49 9.09 9.14 9.18 9.28 9.17,there's work to be do done.....there's also 25 weeks till the Philly Marathon so,I feel if nothing else I have time on my side.

Job well done this week but no time to rest on my laurals,6 miler on tap tomorrow to set up a potential 60 mile week,hopefully an easy run tomorrow b4 the potential of back to back 12s followed by a 10 will sit well w/ my legs.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Yeah......So......That Happened.....

I did say last June that while NOT "hanging up my running shoes" I was taking some time off/down time from Running BUT at some point I would return........"guess who's back!!!!!"
Yep,yours truly has returned to the frey,w/ a vengeance?.....too early to say,w/ a purpose.....fuck yeah!

Sadly in life as in running Time/the clock is my mortal enemy so I'm about a month behind w/ this update,glass half empty you're spared a BLRR {boring long race report} from Broad St,glass half full I plan to sit down each weekend to review the "week that was" in my quest to "scale the mountain" as I aim to turn back the hands of time and attempt a fall marathon here in Philly in November just days after I turn 54.
Why now you ask? why not! when I crossed the finish line in Athens in 2005 I did say it was my last marathon...for now,NOT eternity and after the best part of 11 months off to resume my running on the track would probably be foolish and ill advised,so rather than sit out a second season why not revisit my road running career that I opted to step away from in 06?

After a 12 year hiatus I ran Broad St again this year....and rekindled my love of running, in order to be a near fixture on the podium at Masters Nationals Indoor & Outdoor the past 10 seasons I had to commit almost 100% to "the cause" running 5 days a week often clocking 50/70 mile weeks week in,week out in all conditions often putting " the run" b4 everything......hence why I backed off last year.
I went  off and  followed other avenues,began to write my life story,undertook Improv theater,became fully involved w/ the Philadelphia Spurs supporters group,flew to London in April to catch two final games at White Hart Lane and made plans to hit Orlando,New Jersey and Nashvile next month when Spurs some to America for another pre season previous years when Spurs have come stateside I have been 100% focused on Outdoor Nationals and unable to attend so this year felt like time to redress the balance.

Broad St was a "last minute" decision" via Philly Spurs as three of us ran to raise money for CHOP{Childrens Hospital Of Philadelphia} and while criminally under trained I managed to complete the whole 10 miles w/out stopping...albeit in my slowest ever time for 10 miles 78.18{my 10 mile debut in Aug 84 was 69 mins.....I was also 21 not 53!!!!!} and during the race I reconnected w/ what it is about running that has to quote Metallica's  "Wherever I May Roam" to the game you stay a slave  has been a mindset for over 40 years now.
Yes I had grown weary of the week in,week out grind,always putting the run first,not taking  proper vacations to allow myself trips to Nationals etc but putting aside the near manical drive and desire to put myself in the top three of those races I reconnected w/ the sheer love of testing myself against myself and following the finish of Broad St the wheel were turning again.

In order to run my 15th marathon and first in 12 years will take a ton of blood,sweat and tears on my part....a sacrifice I'm willing to commit to 100%,to that end I have printed off the interwebs a series of knee strengthening exercises to hopefully prolong my career,my right knee has been questionable at best the past few years but as long as I'm willing to do the stretches for 15/20 mins b4 each run I hope I can squeeze out another season{for now}.
To that end I also bought knee sleeves to protect said knees....I also broke down and bought a Garmin given I can now afford one....and it's already paid for it's self!
I've lived in my present home for 5 years,been a West Philly resident for coming up on 11 years and between my resumption of running in 01 till 06 in Port Richmond always "eyeballed" my out and back routes,like I said a Garmin was a luxury I couldn't afford and frankly buying a measuring wheel from  Home Depot and  measuring my routes felt like a "Bellend" move so like I said I eyeballed my routes.......
I have subsequently discovered that what I thought was a 4 mile run is infact 5 mile,what I thought was 6 miles is 8 miles,8 miles is 10 miles and soforth......SO the 5 10 mile runs I'd done since Broad St were actually 12 miler.....which helps w/ the Oddessey Half Marathon coming up next Sunday!!!!

I have signed up for the Rock & Roll Half Marathon in September,the Rocky Run in November and the Philly Marathon the following week,I always knew I'd be back running,it was a matter of when and not if.
From here on in the plan is to post weekly updates each Sunday of the week that a wise man once told me:the run isn't over till the blog's written................

Sunday, February 26, 2017

My Old Man,Said Be An arsenal Fan.....I said F..............

Ever wondered what would happen if a self opinionated Yid got hold of a laptop and wrote his views......then read on.......

After the disappointment of Thursdays Mickey Mouse.....sorry Europa League exit it was normal service today,you know a routine 4.0 win over Stoke,a Harry Kane hat trick,second in the league......
If only being a Spurs fan was that easy,you want easy....we are NOT the club for you,and I should know as a card carrying Spurs fan for 36 years and counting"Spurs,doing it the hard way since 1882" is not only a mantra it's a way of life.....that said I'm not sure I'd have it any other way.

Sure Thursdays exit from the Europa League was  to quote an well worn expression "so Spursy",although winning 2.1 and going out on the away goal rule would've been more Spursy but having Dele sent off b4 half time and still bossing the game w/ a  two man disadvantage{yeah I'm counting the ref as a Gent player,he may not of worn the hideous yellow kit but he might as well have been on their payroll......}we still came close to making to the round of face Genk.........seriously the odds of Gent vs Gent had to have been one in fiveteen and yet "the battle of Belgium" looms large in a few weeks time.......but forgive me if my interest in the NIT tournament of European club soccer is over for another year....although Ajax are still in it and as someone who grew up idolizing Johan Cruyff that may retain some vague interest for yours truly as my interest focuses on the battle for a top four finish and another crack at the Champions League and a possible FA Cup triumph.

To that end an empathic 4.0 demolishing of Stoke this morning while the likes of City,Utd and woolwich were all idle allows us a bit of breathing space,if Leicester could do us a soild tomorrow vs Liverpool we could be in the Cat Bird seat w/ 12 remaining prem games between now and Sunday May 22nd.
Hopefully the prospect of a whole week off between games will aid and abet that b4 the potentially tricky game at home to Everton next Sunday.
Prayer mats will no doubt be out in full force re the extent of Toby's injury today......NOT that we ever get a straight answer w/ player injuries,I guess Toby will be back when Toby's back....let's just hope that's sooner rather than later

Final observation today,4.0 up at the half Harry had his third hat trick in nine games{WBA & Fulham} and Janssen still sat on the bench......."hasta la vista Vincent this summer"......?????
Till next Sunday the kosher deli on the Shelf Side is closed.....