Sorry, it’s been a few weeks but a break was needed. I was feeling overwhelmed. I try to read all the posts but it seemed like every time I turned around, there were another fifty posts and I couldn’t keep up. I have to learn to prioritize and I believe I have. Only have so much time in a day.
I was also reading Dean Koontz new book The Crooked Staircase. Another great book and a page turner that I didn’t want to put down.
Good news is I started running outside. I think all my problems from before with not being able to breathe or run more than a mile without stopping all had to do with being inside. The first time I ran outside I did three miles without stopping and at a pretty decent pace. Second run outside I did two miles a little faster.
Then this weekend I ran the bike trails. I probably did more than I should have but I haven’t ran them in six years plus and it was good to be out there again. Both are six miles and a difficult terrain. Lots of ups and downs and turns so I knew I wouldn’t go fast, it was all about building endurance and distance.
Saturday I would say I ran about five and a half miles of the six. I ran over three miles without my first break and then when I did take breaks, they were short, less than thirty seconds, then back to running. My breathing was good.
Sunday was a little different. I ran the other six mile trail and my legs were tired from the day before. Plus it rained Saturday night so parts of the trail were really muddy. Six years ago when I was running fast it would have been fun. But just getting back into it I didn’t feel like slipping and falling and possibly being injured or break something. I believe I managed to run four or so of the six miles. Lots of walking.
I love these trails. It breaks up the monotony of running on paved roads. They force you to slow down and run for fun. I love the obstacles.
I was glad I was able to get out and figure out I will be okay.
Kind of like life, sometimes you need the unpaved, muddy roads with obstacles in your way to overcome them and know you made it through and you will be okay.
Welcome runners, today you will be running 26.2 miles with temperatures ranging from 38-45 degrees, rain with some downpours and 25-25 mph headwinds the entire race. Enjoy your run.
Monday was the worst conditions for the Boston Marathon since 1908. It was so bad that 23 out of the 45 elite runners dropped out. Not my wife, she was a trooper and finished the race. Not the time she wanted, 4 hours and 5 minutes – 21 minutes slower than last year, but considering the conditions, she did a wonderful job.
Then consider that it seemed everyone was 20 minutes slower. Last year, the women’s winner finished in 2 hours 19 minutes. This year, 2 hours and 39 minutes. The men’s winner was seven minutes slower than last year and the winner from last year, who finished second this year, was ten minutes slower.
Congratulations to Des Linden, the first American winner in 33 years. She was even ready to drop out at one point but she kept on going.
For all those that withstood the elements and finished, you are very tough and should be very proud of yourselves.
My wife wrote a post on her thoughts on it so I will share those with you now.
Last year for Boston I finished 3:44. My training this year for 2018 all shows I COULD do 3:30. That is what I was aiming for. No issues with my back or foot during my training since the start of December 2017. Fast forward to a week before the marathon and one begins to look at the weather app daily just to know what to pack. Didn’t look like it would be too bad for shorts. Think again… Friday before leaving ( left on Saturday) I packed more warm/ dry gear and rain coat and poncho. I prayed and prayed every moment I had that God would change the predictions for the weather…guess He was not having any change of mind. Why??? Let’s just get to it.. race morning… it was raining just sprinkles at first and the wind was not so bad. Get to the Commons to catch the bus to the start and it starts to rain more and the winds gust. My friend and I while on the bus kept saying we can do this we will do it. She is just so awesome! We knew our goals would be shot, we just wanted to cross the finish. Athletic Village was a mud pool. Have never seen so much mud in one place. Still raining and winds blowing. Never seen so many ponchos and umbrellas and garbage bags as coats in one place. Even plastic bags over the shoes. Anything to keep dry. Before the start runners are in the elements. We did have big white tents to stay under and this year they had the sides covered as well. Once you got in you didn’t want to leave. Standing room only. Lucky to find a piece of land to sit on ( if you dare). Before the start I had on 2 pair of running pants, 2 pair of socks, 2 dri-fit fitted running shirts ( long sleeve), 2 pair of gloves with surgical gloves over them ( to stay dry), had a plastic bag over my head with a beanie then a visor ( to keep rain out of my eyes) and 1 running rain/ wind jacket then an OSU rain jacket and poncho. Oh and plastic bags over my shoes as well as duct tape on my shoes. Yes you read right– duct tape. What did I end up shedding? I got rid of the blanket, poncho and plastic bags over the shoes. The duct tape came off during the race. All I wanted to do was finish. I ended up stopping at one point after the half way mark because it was either vomit or use the potty. The hills I made up, I tried to dodge puddles of water on the course but it got to the point there was no way of doing that. My visor stayed on the entire time which surprised me due to the 25-30 mph winds at our faces. The rain at times pounding down on us ( from either side). When the rain would fall harder the crowds got louder. So many wonderful spectators braved the windy, wet, conditions with us. So thankful! Each mile I just thought of those I was running for and the words that stayed in my head of encouragement. I won’t lie, I questioned myself, thought about just stopping but God had other plans for me. Plans to show that through tough, uncomfortable, out of control situations not only was He there but I could do it! Sure I questioned my attire, my hydration, the food I ate prior, my gels all of that ( shows the competitive athlete in me and the heart for the sport) and the stopping to use the potty. My spirits were crushed after the race for sure because I had a plan and goal in mind and it did not happen. I felt as if I failed. I won’t lie I had s good cry at the end and even in the airport waiting my flight home. Then I heard God and read ( truly read) the texts coming in from my loved ones.. I did do it. I battled the toughest weather conditions for the Boston marathon since 1908 ( for the record this was worse), 23 ELITE runners dropped out! I may not of hit my goal but I did it— soaked to the bone I did it. I finished this year in 4:05. That is roughly 20 minutes over my time last year. So with the weather conditions I faced on Monday I will truly take that as a win in my book. I want to thank my family, friends, volunteers and spectators for this year at Boston. My family is a huge supporter in what I love to do and I know Kylie and Rob have to put up with a lot from me during training. None of this would not have been possible without them, without the love and support from family and friends. At first I felt defeated crossing that finish line but as I sit back and take full perspective of the days events God taught me so much more. He wasn’t laughing at me, downing me He was praising me for fighting the course and staying strong! Sorry no pictures but Kathy and I were in another state of mind and taking pictures was the last thing in our minds. I love Boston and I will be back. I have other halves to look forward to this year as well as Columbus full ( where maybe I can get my 3:30 finish) Boston Strong! Kim Strong 2018!
I am taking a week off from work this week. A much needed break.
It will give me some time to finish writing all the drafts I have started. It will give me some time to spend with the family. It will give me some time to relax. It will give me some time to evaluate some things.
Like, why am I so tired all the time? Many of you know I run and was actually kind of fast. Not win the race fast but usually finished in top 5% fast. In a few half marathons I was in the top 1%. In a race of ten thousand to be in the top one hundred finishers I thought was pretty cool.
But then I hurt my knee and it has been one endless injury list after that. I would take a few months off and could resume running and do a 5k with no problems at all. Then this last time I could not get my hamstring to heal. I finally decided to take several months off and just cross train. I was not sitting on my butt.
I have been back to running for a little over two months now and I can not do anything. I can’t run a mile without stopping. I can’t catch my breath. I’ve tried running slow, I’ve tried running fast. I’ve tried intervals, HIIT, inclines, declines, cardio, cardio/weights and NO improvements. I should have improved after two months.
My diet is good. My wife is a health nut so that has not changed. My weight is the same. My sleep schedule is the same at night. My heart rate is good. Resting heart rate 62-64 bpm. While running it is around 150-170 which is normal. So why am I not able to run?
I am tired all the time. I will do a five mile run/walk and then have to take a nap an hour later. I don’t get it. So I think it’s time to go to the doctor. Maybe something is wrong with my heart or lungs or something where I am not getting the oxygen through my body like I need.
This week while I catch up on drafts I am going to repost the birds of a different color series. Have you ever written anything you really liked and thought had a good message and they get no views? Then you throw something together in five minutes and it gets a lot of views. That’s how the birds are for me. No views compared to most of my other posts. I don’t know why they don’t get views.
My mom and wife say maybe it’s the title. Maybe people think they are about birds so they don’t click on them. They are not about birds. Birds are just characters to portray us humans. Maybe I posted them at an odd time and people were busy with their lives. Beats me. But just in case it is the title I am going to do an experiment and post them with a different title. Maybe it will make a difference, maybe it won’t.
If you have read them before maybe you can comment and let me know.
With Easter just a week away, maybe they can be a reminder to love and not hate.
If they get no views again then I will say God is telling me no one is viewing them because he doesn’t want many people to read them so I can turn them into books. Positive attitude doesn’t hurt anything right ?
Here is a recap of last years training and race. The Ups and Downs of Training a 9/10 Year Old- and my spiritual life
Needless to say it was a struggle. I am proud to say I grew up. Last year it was all about pushing Kylie and Brinley, mainly Kylie. You have to get the miles in or you won’t finish. You have to do this or you have to do that and getting push back from Kylie.
This year was different. This year it was let’s get what you can in , do what you can and see what happens. Kylie was sick for a week and half and then a week after she recovered Brinley was sick for a week. Throw in the heat and humidity on top of that and there wasn’t much training going on. I really don’t think they even ran ten times in six weeks. They did do a five miler on the treadmill but the outdoor runs were always less miles than they were supposed to be because of the heat.
Was I ever surprised on race day. Even though it was hot they both set personal records. No, let me change that. They smashed their time from last year. Last year they finished in 1:17:22 (11:49 per mile pace). This year Kylie finished 1:09:48 (10:40 per mile pace). She took almost 8 minutes off last year, 1:09 minute per mile faster. Brinley finished in 1:12:18 (11:03 per mile pace). She took almost 5 minutes off last years time.
Kylie was strong the entire race. She surprised me at the water stations. I thought she would stop and walk but no, she stopped, drank, and was off. Maybe it was the music. This is the first race Kylie ran with music. Brinley started to struggle around mile four.
I ran ahead with Kylie because there was no stopping her and then I would run back and check on Brinley. Then go back up to Kylie and so forth. The last time I checked on Brinley a couple moms had taken her under her wing and said we got her, run with the other one. I love the running community.
After Kylie’s second mile she was faster each mile after that. That was even after taking a short walk break around four and half because her toenails were hurting. She even took another small walk break around five and half just to catch her breath from the heat. Those were her two fastest miles, beside mile one.
Anyway , I am so proud of both of them. Just goes to show you everyone trains differently. Some need pushed, some will just do their thing.
By the way, Kim had another strong run. She did awesome in the heat also. She finished in 1:42:04.
Then afterwards they celebrated at our church. Our church had youth small group kick off that night so they had lots of fun. Very busy day and they were wiped out when we got home. Their legs were sore the next day.
Go Big Or Go Home by American Authors –
Rock On by Tucker Beathard – one of Ky’s favorites right now
Say Something by Royce Lovett –
Play It Again by Luke Bryan – Can’t talk about Kylie without Luke
I ran today. Without pain. I don’t remember the last time I ran without pain. It was a lot easier to run, let me tell you that. I didn’t even realize I had no pain until I was finished and was like hhmm, that was fast and felt good. Then I got to thinking, did I have pain yesterday? I don’t think I did.
I had ran with pain for so long that I had gotten used to it. It was just an every day part of my life. A pain and irritating but it didn’t stop me from running. Well, it did stop me from running like I used to but I could still run.
Which brings me to my topic for today. Running with sin. How many of us are so used to sinning that we don’t even think about it anymore. It has just become a part of our lives. Lying, cheating, addiction, idol worship, spending more than we make, etc… We don’t even think it is wrong anymore, it’s just become a part of who we are.
We limp around everyday with the sin on our back. It doesn’t stop us from living. Not only sin but let’s talk about shame, guilt, fear, pride, etc.. The monkey is on our back but we just keep on going. Sometimes we add on to it until the weight becomes so much we can longer carry it. Then we break.
The smart thing for me to do when I am injured is to slow down. Take a few days off. Rest my injury so I can get back to a pain free run. However, I usually don’t heed that advice and keep going until it heals, which takes longer, or it hurts more, or I just get to the point I ignore it.
When I run with sin what should I do? Stop doing it. Pray to God to help me. I know it’s wrong but some things will take more than me knowing it for me to stop. I need to break the addiction. I need someone to hold me accountable. Maybe it’s a best friend or my pastor or someone I will trust to be honest with me. Confess my sins and know that I am forgiven. Fight another day. Let the guilt, shame, pride, fear go. Give it all up.
I don’t want to run with sin. I want to run with God and there is only one way I know how to do that. Give it all to Him. Work on it every single day. Before I know it, I will wake up one day and truly be free. I will be able to live my life without all the junk and pain I added to it.
How about you? Are you tired of running with sin? Want to be able to live free?
First, I would like to give a shout out to our National Champions.
Chris Landry won the men’s race in 1:02:52. Yeah, you read that right. 4:48 per mile pace. Holy crap. He outran second place, Scott Fauble, by 14 seconds.
Tara Welling won the women’s race in 1:10:25 . That’s a 5:23 per mile pace. She outran second place, Desiree Linden, by 41 seconds.
Another big shout out to the wife, Kim, who, only twelve days after running the Boston Marathon and two days after turning 47, finished in 1:39:10. This placed her second in her age group, 45-49. That’s also a top 6% finish for all runners.
Average Pace : 7:35
Overall Place :353 out of 6067 Gender Place :60 out of 3467 Females Age Group : 2 out of 304 Females in the F45-49
Once again I bit off more than I could chew. Last year, I knew I wasn’t ready. I hadn’t ran more than five miles before the race so I ran a 2:15. 35 minutes slower than my normal half marathons and 40 minutes off my PR. This year, I have had ups and downs in my training but was feeling decent for this race. One day would be good, three-five miles at 7:30ish pace. The next day would be crap, like not being able to run 5 miles without stopping. I ran 10.70 miles in Boston and it was the best I felt in a long time. My pace was 8:26, about a minute off my normal pace pre-injury. Then three days later I couldn’t run two miles without stopping. What the heck!!
I didn’t have much expectation. Yes, I would like to have been 1:45 and under but realistically, I knew that wouldn’t happen. Let’s go for under two hours and if that fails, let’s just beat last year since I know I am better than last year at least.
The good – I told myself I would go at least five miles before walking through a water station, I went eight. My first three miles were 7:49, 7:37, 7:56. I felt good. Through 8 miles I was on pace to finish at 1:47. That’s the end of the good.
I stopped at the water station at mile 8 coming off High Street and that’s when the crap hit the fan. The instant I stopped, my legs felt tired. My thighs felt beat up and my left hip was aching. I was light-headed and got dizzy for a second. That’s never happened before. I started to run again and only ran about half a mile before I had to stop again. I was thinking good thoughts. Less than five miles to go, you can do this, etc..
I ran and walked the next two miles and was thinking okay , only a 5k left to go. Piece of cake. It was then I couldn’t breathe right. This happened once a few weeks ago when I was running with Kim. I don’t know how to explain it other than I could tell air was leaving my lungs, but it didn’t feel like air was going into my lungs, and my body. It didn’t feel like my heart was working I guess you could say. Now I have to wonder if something is up with my heart. Maybe I am just falling apart at the ripe old age of 45.
I don’t remember much of the last three miles except I knew I was being careful and almost thought about stopping. But then I wouldn’t get the medal at the end.
Silly thought I know since I couldn’t breathe. I just kept telling myself run until you can’t then walk until you can. I was mad at myself but still had 2 hours in sight. Then pretty much a quarter mile of the last one third a mile is uphill and I just couldn’t get it going. I finished in 2:01:38, a 9:18 per mile pace. Exactly two minutes per mile off my pace of 7:18 three years ago. I beat 63% of the people running but to me it was a failure and a let down. Yes, I know for most runners I did pretty good and I should be happy but for me and what I used to run it is aggravating.
Ave Pace: 7:18per mile Overall Place : 233 out of 8120 Gender Place :203 out of 3394 Males Age Group : 27 out of 466 Males in the M40-44
or this :
Flying Feather 4 miler in 2011
Those were the good old days.
I even told my wife after the race that I am done racing. I was backing out of the Nationwide Children’s full marathon in October and everything. I am sore and in pain, like I was after my very first half marathon. I don’t know what to do. I feel really good if I stay between three and six miles. I can run in the 7’s per mile and not be tired. Maybe I should just stay in that range for awhile. Maybe I should get the surgery done. Maybe…..
When I am healthy, I like running long however I have to get it in my head I am not healthy. I still have a torn meniscus. I have to remember it took me years to get to where I could do a half marathon in 1:35. What makes me think I can do it after taking two years off? Yes, I ran last year but I didn’t do 200 miles for the entire year. I have just started in January running at least twenty miles per week so I have really only been getting back to it for four months. My mind won’t listen. It keeps thinking my body is like it was three years ago. No wonder professional athletes have such a hard time retiring.
Well, let’s see what the future holds. Will I retire from racing and just run for fun or will I return better than ever? Only time, and my body, will tell.
Thanks for reading. Have a blessed day.
I started to write this Saturday night when I was in a lot of pain. Two days later, I am much better. Only a little sore. I have found a new perspective. The best year of my running was also my worst year personally. Three years ago my marriage almost ended, my dad passed away and I tore my meniscus at the end. Maybe I just need to start over. Start from scratch and build my way up.
Which also brings me to God. How even in our worst moments, He can bring a ray of hope. How He doesn’t ask us to start over, He says come to me now, no matter what you have done, or where you have been, or how many times you have sinned, come to me as you are.
What a wonderful feeling to know that we have a God like that.
Let me just say I-80 across Pa is one long, boring drive. It seemed like I was the only car on the road for most of it. I didn’t come up with any new poems or thoughts to write about because I was so bored. I figured my mind would be going everywhere but it went to sleep while I drove.
Saturday was just check in day and Expo day. We went to the Expo to get Kim’s running bib. Of course if you go to an expo, you have to spend money. We bought a few Boston shirts. Spent less than two hours there and had to pay $40 for parking garage. Seriously, $40 for two hours. Let’s take advantage of the runners and their families. I don’t know, maybe parking is always that expensive in Boston.
We went to a place called Fire & Ice in Harvard Square to eat dinner. Interesting experience and the food was yummy. We actually ate there Saturday and Sunday night. Basically, the food is set out raw and you go pick what you want to eat, take it to the middle where the cooks are and they cook it up for you. Look here, after I was up for forty hours, with only a 30 minute nap, look who bonked out at nine, not me. I was out shortly after.
I know Boston is east and I know the sun rises in the east, I just didn’t expect it to be coming in our hotel window at five am. I was going to get up at six anyway to go for a run but wasn’t expecting to be woke up at five by sunlight. I went out on my run to conquer Heartbreak Hill, which I mapped to be five miles from our hotel. Being in the zone like I was, I went down Beacon Street to Chestnut Hill Ave Reservoir to Commonwealth, but I went right like an idiot instead of left. Just running along and not paying attention, saw a sign for Commonwealth and took it. See the pic below where I made a right,between miles 3 and 4, I should have went left around the reservoir. Interestingly enough, there was a big hill exactly at the five mile mark and it was exactly half a mile long, just like Heartbreak Hill. So I didn’t actually go to Heartbreak Hill but I did run a pretty nice hill that was the same length as Heartbreak. This was the best I felt on a run in a long time. Only stopped to take a few pics below.
I did go home and ran the Newton Hills and Heartbreak Hill on my treadmill. Wasn’t that bad, but I didn’t run the 20 miles before it either. 🙂
The rest of Sunday was just Kylie and me day. Kim stayed at the hotel to rest for the race. Kylie and I went to the Museum of Science, she loves stuff like that. We had a good time. Spent three hours there then took the subway to Boston Commons. We then decided to walk the 2.5 mile Freedom Trail. Lots of history and places to see. We didn’t actually make it the entire way. Once we crossed the bay we decided to go left back to the Museum of Science and call Kim to come pick us up. Our legs were hurting. Mine probably more than hers but she was tired also.
It was a great experience for our family. I don’t know if I could live in downtown Boston area but Cambridge, Harvard area, oh yeah. Loved where we stayed. I could run by the Charles River and over to the path by the river by The Museum Of Science or can run to Heartbreak Hill, the right direction.
Kim did qualify for next year so maybe we will see Boston again. I won’t drive next time, be cheaper to fly and avoid all the parking garage fees.
No music today, will just leave you with some pics.