Saturday, July 31, 2010

Chapter 2 page 107- HMTU 37 Race

What a magnificent day!!!!!!!! Today was my favorite 5K of all time! The Berne Swiss Days 5K race will be a annual event on my MUST DO list!!!!! I'm not sure what made it so fun - the fact that there were 10 people with me, or if the weather was finally not so insane, or if the route was simple, or if it was the Swiss cow bells ringing to cheer us on (yeah, that was pretty fantastic), or if it was the large enthusiastically cheering crowd all around the route, or if perhaps it was the cordial fellow racers, or if our pace which wasn't setting me up for certain death, or if it was the pancake and sausage breakfast afterward, or something else I can't put my finger on. Whatever "IT" was - IT was certainly a GREAT time!!!! This was my first time and I was so surprised that lil' ol' Berne had a race with over 600 pre-registered participants - that's crazy big!

It was great to bring 2 girls who were new to racing with me. They had a great time and are planning on doing other races. I absolutely am thrilled to share my love of participating in these events with others - and get overjoyed when they like it and will continue to participate in future races.

"L" had practically her whole family there - it was so fabulous! "L's" sister, "K", her daughter, "L", her son-in-law "J", her husband "G", and her 3 grandchildren "A", "T", & "T" were all there either participating or cheering - so fun!!!!!!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Chapter 2 page 106 - HMTU 36

Today's weather was beautiful - 82 degrees, 55% humidity, UV 12 (so it was REALLY sunny) , nice breeze. The shade was MUCH cooler than the sun, but . . . still, a beautiful day!

"L" is enjoying some much deserved time with her daughter (hi "L's" daughter "L" - welcome home, can't wait to see you on Saturday!) who is stationed in England with the USAF so today's training was all "C" and I. We were given strict instructions from "L" to take it easy - no more than 3 miles and just really go slowly since Saturday we are running in the Berne Swiss Days 5K. Gotcha - "C" and I were looking forward to a leisurely 3:1 for 3 miles - especially after the 10 mile nightmare on Monday. We started off with a slow walk for 1/2 mile then did 3:1 for 3 intervals and holy cow, 3 intervals later we had completed 1.75 miles- WHAT! That's a 12 minute mile folks! "C" and I did a 12 minute mile! Now, I get that for all of my awesome running blog friends that is still very slow, but my 5K PR is only 39:11. Wow - we both were breathing heavy and thought this is way too fast. We walked an interval and then did the 3:1 until the last 1/2 mile when we walked to cool down. Crazy! Who knows what got into us . . . I'm going with the beautiful weather!=

Side note - today, I decided to try out my Floats size 8 with both the insoles and orthotics. Great news - my toe nails do not hurt. I can tell they are new shoes - they need some breaking in, but I think we're finally onto something . . . watch PI stop making the dang Floats now. I'm returning the New-Balance 1064s to Fred Toegnes this weekend. I think I have enough pairs of shoes already in the mix (2 pairs of floats and 1 pair of Asics Nimbus).

Monday, July 26, 2010

Chapter 2 page 105 - HMTU 35

Today's goal: 10 miles without dying. I personally wanted to do a little more running than we have been doing just because that's kind of the goal - walk/run not just walk/walk/walk/walk. So . . . I created a route of 10 miles and hoped we would walk the first and last mile then do 3:1 the middle 8 - HA!!! So apparently I am delusional. We did discover that doing intervals of 3:1 twice followed by a total 3:1 of walking made it go pretty quickly mentally - just get through these 2 runs and then there is some walking. Good plan that started off great, but we got pretty tired a wee bit before the halfway point. We once again walked a lot, but at least we ran more than we had in the past 2 weeks combined. Although the weather was cooler than it's been, it was still hot. When we started it was 82 degrees and 56% humidity. When we finished 2h 55m later (technically it was longer than that, but I stop my watch when we take little breaks) it was 71 degrees and 77% humidity. The UV today was 9 out of 16 when we started - very sunny!

Scale 1-10, this session was a very, very, very difficult 9.9. So happy to have both "L" and "C" with me, and let it be known that I only finished because they worked so hard to help me. Great news - my shins don't hurt! Finally! I have a blister on my right pinkie toe just like I was getting when these shoes were new - bummer! My heel hurts but that's not anything new. My who-ha is a little sore, but nothing too terrible while I'm up and about . . . will likely hurt to roll over in bed tonight. My middle 3 toe nails are sore, but I've come to accept that as my new pain. I do freak out every time I take off my socks - I would just die if my nails had fallen off. YIKES!!!!!!!

Best thing about tonight was when I got home. My husband (who doesn't know about this blog) said "I'm proud of you" twice in about a 3 minute period of time. While I was out traveling the region by foot, he was home grilling an awesome chicken breast for me. When I got home - YUM (after I showered first)! He had prepared a super delicious meal of chicken breast, stuffing, green beans, carrots, and had fresh grapes. It was really fantastic. Thanks, babe!

Note to "C": Check out my restaurant review blog called
Each entry is about a different restaurant. The most recent post is from last week at Joseph Decuis. Let me know what you think of it. See you Thursday.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Chapter 2 page 104 - NO HMTU 35

"C" and I canceled our training cession for this afternoon due to the extreme heat. At the time we were suppose to start the heat index was 106 degrees. It was hard to breathe when I just opened the car door let alone if I were going to run or walk. "C" and I decided that training wasn't worth dying over.

Stay tuned for our 9.5 mile run on Monday - yikes!

Have a great weekend everyone. If you get a chance, hop over to my other blog at:
for my recent review of Joseph Decuis

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Chapter 2 page 103 - HMTU 34

Less than 12 hours after "C" and I walked last night, "L" and I ran/walked this morning. Although the temperature was cooler (74 degrees), it is sooo humid (the internet says it is 100% humidity - seriously, no wonder my shirt and hair are soaking wet!). We only did 3 miles but outside of our warm up and cool down (ha - too hot to cool down) we did 6 intervals of 3:1. We went pretty quickly, 40 minutes or so - I forgot to stop the watch before we started stretching (sorry). Because of the crazy heavy fog we elected to stay off the road for our safety - we did the ziggy zaggy path and then up to the fence row.

I talked to "L" about "C's" goals for the half-marathon. We had a brilliant thought - "C" could run the PCT half-marathon (Labor Day weekend) while "L" & I do the PCT 10 mile race leaving us all to finish the F4F half-marathon triumphantly together. Pretty awesome solution we thought so I texted "C". She said that she wanted to stay with us for both races. Hmmm - we'll see. We just want "C" to do great and achieve her goals - "L" and I only really have one goal . . . to not die - ha!

Tomorrow to the big city and a 6-8 mile run on part of the F4F course. Wish us luck.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Chapter 2 page 102 - HMTU 33

Welcome back "C"!!!!!!! If there was a half-marathon (or even a full marathon for that matter) where you get credit for talkin' rather than runnin' then we would come in first place for sure!!! We set off to do a light 3 miles of walk/jog, but since we haven't seen each other in almost 2 weeks, we spent the entire training session walking and talking . . . but we walked quickly. I think we walked like 72 minutes so I would say that we were close to 5 miles - maybe like 4.75 or so I'd guess. Tonight's catching up was so fantastic - love ya "C", missed ya "C", welcome back "C".

After our training we discussed the F4F strategy. It is becoming clearer to "L" and I (after our 9 mile training run on Monday) that we aren't going to be able to do it in 2h45m which is "C's" goal. It's a great goal and maybe someday I could work up to it, but I think rather than pushing so hard and risk hating it (we all know how I feel about doing things I hate) - that it would be better for "L" and I to do our very best but that we're not likely going to finish before 3H especially with no chip starting mat and 7500 participants - we'll lose several minutes at the start before we ever get going - that alone is a deficit that I doubt I can climb out of. "C" is going to think about her desire and goal for the event, but it would be so fun to have all 3 of us cross the finish line at the same time. That said, "C" feel no guilt - do what you need to do - we'll still love you and hope the best for you (but you better wait for us at the finish line . . . with water in hand SMILE!)

I'm training with "L" first thing tomorrow so I better wrap this up and head to bed - 3 miles in 8 hours from now . . .maybe it will be cooler???? Nighty night!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Chapter 2 page 101 - HMTU 32

"L" and I tackled the long run again this week together. This time we chose to do the PCT 10K route plus enter the park and go 2.5 miles in/out of the park. This 9.1 mile run/walk took us a few minutes less than last week's 8.4 mile run/walk. (note to "L": it's a good thing we did the 2 minutes past the lake - without doing so we would have not gotten to our 9 miles according to

Great news - my shins and blisters are absolutely great! Horray! Other great news - the Pearl Izumi company sent me a pair of insoles for my size 7.5 Floats since i cut up the right one as directed by the running store which was an ultimate catastrophe. They sent them to me for free in less than a week - great customer service!

Bad news - the reason this combo of insoles and orthotics in my size 7.5 Floats has never been a good idea is because my toes get really crammed into the small toe box. They had much more room when I took out the insoles, but we all remember the blister on the ball of my foot that resulted from doing that. Now the one thing that really hurts on my body? Not my heel, not my blister, not my shins, not my back - nope . . . my middle 3 toe nails on each foot. I'm not a brave person - I'm not sure I can handle losing toe nails, let alone as many as 6 of them. YIKES!!!! Stay tuned!

One last parting piece of semi-good news - there are only 10 more long training runs (unless "C" and I run in FW on Friday then there will be 11). Here are the 10 remaining long runs that will either kill me or make me stronger (note: these are listed in miles): 9.5, 10, 10.5, 11, 11.5, 12, 12.5, 13, 10 mile race, 13.1 mile race.

One more piece of good news - I've been training for 13 weeks and only have 10 more to go so we are well into the second half of the training (insert party horns & confetti). (Insert the Little Engine That Could "I think I can, I think I can, I think I can")

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Chapter 2 page 100 - how far I've come

First, this is page 100 of my blog. I've done a few posts without page numbers but welcome to my 100th official "page".

Now, for the real reason for this post. I am reading the most hysterical book which has come at such a timely time in my life. It's called "The Non-Runner's Marathon Guide For Women: Get off your butt and on with your training" by Dawn Dais. I must put your fears to rest at once. Despite the book being titled "marathon training", I'm in no way going to begin training for nor participate in a full marathon. No worries - the book also covers the half-marathon distance as well. The book spends a lot of time stressing the importance of keeping a training log. Well . . . I have a training log, it's called a blog. So after reading several chapters (which include exerts from the author's training log), I decided to revisit all of my HMTU entries. I began with the first entry which was back on April 29, 2010. Check it out - it was Chapter 2 page 50.

This post is entitled "how far I've come". Let me detail the highlights of that first HMTU post:

1. training time = 38 minutes ("L" and I did 2 hours 20 minutes last week; "C" and I have done 2 hours 20 minutes during the "great flood")

2. training distance = 2.75 miles ("L" and I did 8.4 miles last week)

3. interval used = 2:2 ("C" and I use 3:1, "L" and I use 2:2)

4. total number of intervals = 7 (currently we can't count that high, ha!)

5. unfavorable weather conditions = windy (I would kill for a little breeze these days)

6. biggest physical complaint = tight lower back (my back hasn't hurt in weeks - it's been replaced with shins and blisters, but even my blisters are getting better)

7. scale 1-10 how hard did I say I worked = 9 out of 10 (any training under 5 miles is nothing more than a 3 or 4 out of 10 these days; I'm reserving 9's for those crazy long runs of 8+ miles we are doing now)

8. anything positive = I said I didn't cough during or after the training (this is still a good thing I'm experiencing)

9. any errors in the post = I said only 45 more training sessions (yeah, I think 45 was too conservative. We are at 31 training sessions and still have like 2 months to go so that's about 24 more sessions . . . give or take a couple)

So just when I thought I wasn't making any progress and thought that I couldn't possibly do this. . . it appears that I've made great strides since day 1. Glory be to God! Praise Him! Your continued prayers are welcomed and graciously accepted.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Chapter 2 page 99 - HMTU 31 a race

I did the St.Clair 5K Run today. I didn't go with my normal support staff - nope, today I went with some of my wellness clients. They did great. Two of these women had never done a race before . . . today was my 10th race in 11 months. I had another PR today (38:11; a full 95 seconds faster than last week's race time). Thanks "C" for letting me use your countdown timer. A race director friend of mine has always said that even if you don't know anyone, within 10 minutes you'll have 50 new friends and he is exactly right. About 1.25 miles into the race, a woman named "L" was next to me. Our paces matched pretty well and we both agreed it was easier to do these things with someone than to do it alone. The rest of the race I had a partner. She pushed me at times and I pushed her at times. It was the best possible situation given neither of my regular training partners were there ("C" is still on vacation and "L" was having a garage sale).

No races next week thankfully. I am dreading the 9 mile training run . . . and have you seen the forecast? SUPER HOT!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Chapter 2 page 98 - HMTU 30

Can you believe today was my 30th training session????? I can't!!! Besides my 100 days in a row at the gym last summer and fall, I'm pretty sure that I've never done something so consistently.

Today's training was with "L" since "C" is still on vacation. "C" sent me a picture of the most amazing view from atop the mountain she and her husband hiked today. It was breathtaking. I really wanted to take a picture of the Wabash river and porta john that is on the greenway and say something cocky, but that just seemed so cruel. I'm so excited for her trip - she needs a little get-away.

"L" twisted my arm to do a short EASY session today. We only went about 2.75 miles - TOO EASY!!!! As soon as we set off across the bridge I said aloud, "Oh my goodness, this will be so short - we've got this - too easy!" The reason for my reaction - I can mentally wrap my head around 3 miles, 4 miles, and maybe even 5 or 6 miles. I just can't grasp the nightmare of 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, or 13 miles. That seems so far BECAUSE IT IS SO FAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We used "C's" countdown timer and did 3:1 after a 10 minute warm up. We got 4 intervals done. The entire session was only like 30 minutes - what an awesome time. Would I still get the same benefit if I did that everyday of the week - I think I'd even be willing to do them twice a day if the benefit would be the same as doing those horrific long runs once a week. Tragically, I doubt that the benefit would be the same (boo hoo!). I am looking forward to doing the half-marathon and then not doing another one - just returning to a more normal distance 3-6 miles a few times a week.

Let's talk shoes, shins, and blisters. My heel was still a little sore from the blister draining yesterday so I decided a change of footwear was necessary - a rest from the heel blister causing Asics. I decided that the only "safe" choice was to wear the 7.5 Floats with both the inserts (right shoe had a size 8 insert since I cut up the size 7.5 insert) and my orthotics. My shins were a little sore, but they have been sore so I can't really blame that on these shoes right now. My blisters were NOT a problem with the insoles today. I'm so excited. I will be wearing the Floats during Saturday's race. I'm not sure they will be good for longer distances, but they got me through today.

A note about today's weather. All day we had a heat advisory, but in less than an hour's time the temp dropped more than 25 degrees due to a storm. During our run, it was only 72 degrees, but it was like 98% humidity then halfway through our run - it began raining (great forecasting "L") . . . we got pretty wet. I was thankful to have a cooler temperature, a cloudy day (that sun has been a real killer!), a breeze, and even the rain was a refreshing change of pace from the SUPER HOT HUMID and SUN that is all we have had day after day after day these last 4 months.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Chapter 2 page 97 - medical intervention

After last night's whole body drama, I decided to get a little advice from my own personal team of health care professionals. First, I sought the advice of an NP regarding the proper course of action for my heel blister. She said "drain it." So drain it we did. The popping part didn't hurt, but the squeezing it to get the fluid out was a little uncomfortable (okay, or the chicken in me, it was a LOT painful). She put a double stack of band-aids all around to create a dam around it and said not to run because it was going to just get worse. She scared me with some general threats like: it will get deeper, it could get infected, it will take longer to heal, and may get necrotic (NICE!). Yikes! But I can't sit on the sideline any more - I HAVE to keep training. So . . . I absolutely have to commit to returning to the treadmill to continue to try the size 8 Floats and the New-Balance to see if either of them can possibly work without causing either shin splints or blisters. Not sure when I can get that done, but I promise to reveal the results.

I then consulted my rehab friend of mine who has a close personal stake in my shin health. After at least a year of arm twisting I agreed to undergo a brief sample experience of something she affectionately calls "scrapping". Oh yeah, that sounds like something I want - pick me pick me! Honestly, it was NOT bad, but I think she was holding back a little (or maybe a lot - as I said, she has a personal stake in my outcome - no need to kill me 'cuz she's sure to hear about it!). Thanks chica for helpin' a sista out! I greatly appreciate the trial. If it helps, sign me up for some more torture!

Just wanted to share the update with you. Tomorrow's plan calls for a 4 mile run in the 93 heat advisory weather - can't wait!!!!! Stay tuned!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Chapter 2 page 96 - HMTU 29

First, and most importantly - what have I gotten myself into? Second, why is it that when I proposed this idea to all of you loyal readers NOT ONE of you tried to convince me that perhaps an MRI of my brain might be a good initial step to rule out insanity! Third, I'm in deep now - there's no turning back - seriously, OMG! HELP!!!

Today, it was like old times just "L" and I except where the old times called for 4 miles at the MOST, today we did a crazy 8.4 miles (according to

Here's the awesome news - I did it! I did it! Other good news - I did that with "L" - by far the longest we have gone together. Shout out to "C" who is on vacation and doing a 9 mile hike and a 12 mile hike (show off -seriously, nothin' but love! - I'll hate the game not the playa).

Bad news - it took 2 hours and 20 minutes (we didn't run too much and when we did run we used the ol' 2:2 - sorry "C" just couldn't hang - should have taken the 3:1 and just reversed the intervals to be 1:3 HA! Why didn't we think of that earlier). Other bad news - painful blister on my right heel. Anyone else tired of hearing about my blisters? I'm beyond tired of having them. I'm also feeling a bit desperate as I feel like I'm running out of options for what to do or try next. I should also mention that it was hot and humid and very sunny today. My cheeks and lips are so sunburn - by far the least painful thing currently on my body.

Shin update - they started off killing me, but after 6 miles or so - they weren't terribly noticeable - probably because everything else was hurting me more (SMILE). It's been 90 minutes since we finished and they still don't hurt, but I'm sure by tomorrow I'll be crawling to my cheerios. My heel blister is really bothersome.

Special shout out to my friend "J's" son & daughter-in-law for allowing us to refill our water bottles at their house. The hose was filling up their swimming pool and it looked like the most refreshing thing I have EVER seen!!! Ohhh sweet mercy, under other circumstances I would have jumped right in! A million thank you's for your hospitality. You will never know how appreciative we are for your kindness (seriously - it was more than water - it gave me hope that I could continue)

Course note - today we didn't park at our normal spot. Our normal spot is sort of a breath of fresh air in that we go out to the country to nowheresville and then it is the first thing we see when we return to civilization and we know that we are done. Nope, not today. "L" thought we should park at a different place. When we came up to the normal parking spot, a wave of depression overcame me . . .instead of being at the car, we still had 2 more miles. What!!! 2 MORE miles?!?!?! "L" thought it would help us mentally and although it was torture, I do think it had some benefits.

"L" says we're on for a short easy run on Thursday - good thing, the forecast is to be 93 degrees - sweet mercy! I'm running a 5K in Ohio on Saturday and so I really hope that we can have a nice easy run on Thursday and that my blister gets better (doubtful). Stay tuned! Oh and next week "L" says we're going 9 miles - there aren't enough words to describe how painful that sounds.

Thanks to all of you for being on this journey with me! Couldn't do it without my millions of loyal readers!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Chapter 2 page 95 - HMTU 28 & Race

Let's start with the good news -
"C" and I did the 5K in FW called "Runners on Parade". Wow! What a fun event. Kudos to everyone who helped organize the event and to those who made the day such a HUGE success. High 5 to the awesome race director. Fantastic job!!!! "C" and I tried out the interval she dreams of using for the half-marathon, 3 minutes running and 1 minute of walking. It started off no problem. I think we began a little faster than we should have since our first mile was like 12:30 (way faster than I thought I could go). We did 9 intervals of 3:1 and 1 interval we walked - there was also about 30 seconds where we walked about a quarter of a mile from the end because I truly thought I was going to PUKE! I got it together and we sprinted (honest to God, sprinted) to the finish line. Our official time, 39:46 - - - my personal record (regretfully for "C" it was 3 minutes slower than her PR - she is just amazing!). In a race of nearly 985 finishers, we ended up 919th & 920th place! Not something to hang our hat on, but for me - it's as good as I could have ever dreamed - and most importantly WE WEREN'T LAST (though a 75 year old beat us by like 22 minutes - NICE!). I felt good about what I did. I was tired and now worry whether or not I'll be able to do 10 miles further than today's race (wow - that's a really long way!)

Now for the medium news -
My shoes. I used my Asics Nimbus 12 with heel levelers, insoles, and orthotics. They worked out pretty well. My shins are a little sore. My big blister is neither better nor worse (which is a good thing). I did end up with a few smaller blisters around my toes - I think these can be fixed by wearing toe socks. I do have a bigger issues with a blister type situation on my right heel. I'll have to see how it develops. The insoles have a lip on them and I think my heel was just sitting up on top of that lip. I'll see what can be done to limit the damage in the future.

Now for the bad news -
I was feeling pretty good following the race and the drive home so I decided that I had been lazy enough and really needed to knock out the long country run that "L" had done this week and that "L" & "C" had done 2 weeks ago - both of which, I did not participate in. It was 11 a.m. and 83 degrees and VERY sunny. I started off from downtown and ran out of town down to the first intersection in the country. That was at least 2 miles. I was still feeling pretty good at that point - hot, but pretty good. I go over to the next country road and along the way, I got terribly tired. I had been using the 3:1 interval thanks to "C" who let me use her countdown timer this week. I decided to walk through a 3:1 interval. I got to the next intersection and really wanted to go left to go back toward home, but decided to continue on the 8 mile course (fully knowing that I was biting off way more than I could chew). I get a 1/4 mile down the road and decide I just can't go the rest of the mile down (because that's also one more mile back plus that's not even the half way point of the route!). I turn around, stop in the shade, text "C" and say I'm a failure and head back for home. It's hot, I'm tired, and I walk pretty much the rest of the way back 2.5 miles at the world's slowest pace! Seriously! I had gotten to the turn around point in about 40 minutes. I got back to the car in 50 minutes. I had done some 2 minutes of shuffling then 2 minutes of walking, but those were almost too few to mention and the pace was that of my training partners' walking speed. My feet hurt, my legs hurt, my ego was really hurting. I was really depressed about my performance. Again, I'm super scared that in 2 months I won't be able to go 13.1 miles - seriously, I only made it a total of 5.3 in the training loop I did (in a total time of 1 hour 28 minutes). What am I going to do? It's not like I haven't been training nearly 3 months!!!!!!!!!!! I don't think this half-marathon is going to be a pretty picture AT ALL, but . . . I'm still committed to trying and will continue to work as hard as I can to progress, fight through, and succeed! After the pity party, I thought of a few things. First, I have NEVER gone that far all alone ever in my entire life!!!!!!!!!!! I have long said that I could/would never do this training if I had to do it by myself (thank God for my training partners). So for me to be able to do 5.3 miles out in the country (not even with the security of the greenway or park) is a pretty amazing accomplishment - for me, anyway. Second, 5.3 miles in the afternoon (no matter how ugly it was) + 3.1 miles in the morning (at PR pace) + walking about 1/2 mile-1 mile getting to/from event = 8.9 miles (not too shabby . . . for me!)

I'm hoping that my type A training partner "L" can somehow help me progress this upcoming week without killing me.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Chapter 2 page 94 - shoe update

Since I wasn't able to determine the best shoe option last night on the treadmill, I tried it again tonight. I took 4 pairs of shoes, a pair of orthotics, and a pair of heel levelers. I wrote up a list of 6 options (on top of the 3 options I tried last night) and took it with me to the workout facility.

Option 1 = size 7.5 Pearl Floats with just the insoles
(left insole was the from the size 7.5 shoe and the right insole is from the size 8 pair since I cut up the size 7.5 insole under the guidance of the 3RRC staff

Result = not bad - a little snug along the right foot toes, but not bad

Option 2 = size 7.5 Pearl Floats with insoles and orthotics

Result = could work - quite snug - definitely not a good long term solution; could work especially for shorter runs

Option 3 = size 8 Pearl Floats with insoles and orthotics

Result = didn't try this option tonight. Too tired, too many options, already know the shoes solve the shin splint problem.

Option 4 = New Balance 1064's with heel leveler, orthotics, and insoles

Result = Not terrible. Plenty of room in the toe. Wow - spacious!!! I think thicker socks would be a better choice in these shoes (tonight I wore toe socks). I think it will take a little time to get used to these shoes - not really a "break-in" thing, but more of it just seems heavy and the heel strike is just a little different than other shoes I've run in.

Option 5 = size 7.5 (regular width - B) Asics Nimbus 12 with orthotics and insoles

Result = My shins were hurting - they were hurting from the running in the other shoes so I'm not sure it was all these shoes. I really wanted this to be perfect, but it just wasn't working. Side note - this is the option I ran in on Tuesday with "C" when my blister got bad AGAIN!

Option 6 =  size 7.5 (regular width -B) Asics Nimbus 12 with orthotics, insoles, and heel levelers

Result = Stepping up to the treadmill with this option on my feet, my shins were aching so badly that I just didn't think I could even take one step - but I was determined to either keep this on the list or write it off. One step, then two steps, then three, and within just a few steps my shin pain completely resolved - no joke!!! Shocker right! I walked at 3.5, then at 4.0, then I ran for 5 minutes straight at 4.5, then I ran for 3 minutes at 5.0 - no problem. It felt the best of all the shoes/combos I have tried. This is the option I'm going with for now.

Next? I will need to go a 3rd time to the treadmill to determine if the size 8 floats or the N-B are worth keeping or if the Asics Nimbus 12 are my only shoe for the future.

This Saturday I'm doing the Runners on Parade 5K and if I make the television highlights (doubtful!) - you'll see me sporting my awesome pink Nimbus 12's. Stay tuned for a report on how they work out. Fingers crossed!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Chapter 2 page 93 - shoe dilemma defines dilemma as:
1. a situation requiring a choice between equally undesirable alternatives.
2. any difficult or perplexing situation or problem.

Yep - that's exactly what I have with my shoes. In page 91, I described my latest adventure in the search for the perfect running shoe.

I currently have 4 shoes in the mix and I'm trying very hard to decide which one will be "MY" running shoe. Yesterday I ran with Asics Nimbus 12 which were okay, but not great (bummer, 'cuz they're really cute!). I washed them clean and have them packed up to be returned to Zappos. I certainly didn't get that "love at first 'site' (wear)" with them.

The 2 pairs I got yesterday needed test driven. I decided to try them both on the treadmill since they too could be returned if they weren't 'perfect'. I decided to do a mile in each pair just to compare and see. I started with the New Balance 1064's. They weren't terrible. They totally didn't hurt my blister (woo hoo!). My shins did start to get a little sore after 1 mile. Was this because the shoes aren't really going to fix my shin splints? Was it because I ran on an incline (not likely, that's suppose to minimize the pain)? Was it because I ran a little faster than normal? Was it because I was running on a treadmill and I'm just not use to that? Was it because of the little heel wedges that Fred Toegnes put in these shoes? Who knows.

I decided for my second mile I would take out the heel wedges and use only my orthotics and the shoe's insoles. I got half a mile and my shins were killing me plus my left hip started hurting. Crazy! I stopped and decided that the heel wedges (although they cost $30/pair are essential if I chose the N-B 1064's). On a positive note - absolutely no blister issues!

For my third experiment I went with the Pearl Floats which were a half size larger than the ones I have been using. Let's remember that my Pearl Floats have completely cured my shin splints, but left me with the huge blister on my right foot. When I started up the treadmill wearing the half size larger, I had to make several pauses to get the laces tied just right - not too tight, not too loose. Eventually, things got rolling and almost immediately my shin pain was gone! Unbelievable - those shoes really do work and apparently there isn't anything like it on the market. Unfortunately, with the insoles and my orthotics - there was very little room around the toes. I felt as if my big toe nail was rubbing on the shoe - I certainly don't want to lose a toe nail in order to prevent blisters and cure shin splints (uggg!). I'm also afraid that it is just too pinching across the ball and could eventually cause something serious like a neuroma.

So after 2 1/2 miles, I feel very confused about what to do next. I'm thinking that I should try all 3 pairs again on the treadmill at least one or maybe even two more times. All are returnable. So what's the problem you ask? What am I suppose to wear tomorrow for our 3 mile run? What am I suppose to wear for Saturday's 5K race? My current Pearl Floats will EAT my feet alive and cause bad blisters. I do know that I need to get this all settled and very very quickly because I'm getting behind on my mileage ("L" ran 8.2 miles on Tuesday - what???!!!!??? That's crazy far! The furthest I have gone so far is like 7 miles). I'm getting desperate and scared that I'm soon going to miss the training train and let "C" and "L" down as well as myself and everyone I've told about this crazy plan - not to mention 6 months I will have put into this training. I KNOW that I can complete a half-marathon but I need to get the right shoes that will help me.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Chapter 2 page 92 - Shout out to my training partner's kids

This post is a special shout out to my training partners' children.

"C's" girls:
"K" - First, get well soon!!! Second, "K" Happy Birthday tomorrow! I hope it comes with a year full of blessings of happiness, friends, and fun!!!!! I also hope you and your pup-pup can join us again for a nice leisurely walk soon or you and I can hang out in a non-sweating environment.

"A" - although I've never met you, I have heard all about the new life you're about to start in NYC. How exciting! Good luck with your job search!!! Both "L" and I are wishing you a world's worth of luck and fortune!

"B" - I'm sending you all my good vibes wishing you the best of luck on your upcoming test. I felt so badly for you and know you've spent a lot of time studying. I'm sure this next time will be a piece of cake! Deep breaths - visualize - relax - and rock the test!

Now for "L's" kids -
"L" I'm so excited you and your husband "J" are going to be running the BSD 5K with us. What a great memory you will make for you two and your mom! She's getting excited about your visit. She sure does miss you.

"D" - "Auntie LB" is missing the kiddos and hopes that grandma will bring them by the office soon! It sounds as though you all had a very nice vacation. I'm so glad you all were able to get away, share some laughs, and have many good times. Looking forward to our next time out.

"J" - I hope your apartment items made it home in one piece. We had a great time moving them out (shhh, don't wake the dog!). What a memory for "L", "C", and I. We all agree that moving boys is way easier than moving girls to/from college. Kudos to your minimalist ways!!!! Good luck with your senior year! Enjoy every moment.

Chapter 2 page 91 - HMTU 27

Today's training got all screwed up to say the least. First, the weather. Holy cow people, it is HOT and HUMID!!!!!!!!!!! "C" asked if we could run in the morning rather than the evening for reasons other than the weather, but boy was that a great move on our part (except that we weren't able to include "L" as she was working this morning). When we started it was 78 degrees and 98% humidity. When we were done an hour later it was 83 degrees and slightly less humid (91% I think).

"L" created a very specific training schedule for the remainder of our time before the PCT & F4F - - - today it called for 8.3 (or so) miles (a half mile further than "L" & "C" went last Thursday). For the record, that is 1.3 miles further than I have gone with the exception of the training disaster called "The flood". I was scared of the distance and the heat, but feeling confident my blister was healed. WRONG!!!

"C" and I decided that the country route was too intimidating and we set off for the PCT 10K route with some extra mileage to be added at the end. We got 2 miles down the greenway and we were really HOT! We decided to stay on the greenway which is a total of 4 miles round trip and then do more at the end. My sock felt a little goofy so I asked if we could stop at the picnic tables by the parking lot before going on to phase 2 of the mileage. We stopped, I pulled off my shoe, then my sock, and YIKES there was my big blister - painful and as big as it was last week. Honestly, I was really depressed and felt defeated at this point. Why? I had worn different tennis shoes thinking that would be the perfect solution. Also, I was pretty confident that my blister had healed over the holiday weekend. NOPE! It was all screwed up again. I was scared (and still am a little). I had 5 days off since my last run, and now today is already Tuesday. I have training on Thursday which is not a requirement, but more importantly, I have 3 5K's coming up this month alone - the first being this Saturday. I'm also scared because I really need to increase my mileage in order to be able to LIVE through the half-marathon. "C" gave me a cool 13.1 sticker and it is now on my car window so I am required to complete the half-marathon. There is no backing out now!!!!

Given this morning's set back, I took off to Fort Wayne today. I first went to return the never worn second pair of tennis shoes that I bought when I discovered the Pearls had cured my shin splints. At 3 Rivers Running Company, they were polite, but not really all that helpful. They said this kind of shoe the Pearl Float is unique in how it helps and that they really didn't recommend changing. They exchanged my Pearls for a half size larger and said that it would be okay. I then went to Foot Solutions - what a crazy place. There was one worker and like 12 people over the age of 80 all needing extensive help. I quickly left thinking that I would try other options before waiting there. Thanks to "C's" recommendation, I went to Fred Toenges. I left feeling FT's hopeful. I walked out with a pair of New Balance wide width shoes and something called heel levelers (dude, they are the littlest flimsiest thing and they alone cost $30 and have to be replaced every 3-6 months). They gave me some samples of Spenco 2nd skin for blister treatment and some thoughts on different socks to try. The shoes were 15% off - yeah! I must try them out on a treadmill for 1-2 miles to see if they work (treadmill rather than outdoors because they can be returned if I don't like them -yeah!)

So today's training was 4 miles of extremely difficult walking/running followed by new shoes . . . again! Stay tuned. Something has to finally click so that I can be rolling without issues soon!!!!! I'm beginning to feel like the weakest link in my training group and like a really HUGE drag on their progress!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Chapter 2 page 90 - no HMTU 27

I have been put on the bench for today's training. Sidelined by the dang blister which has gotten worse and worse this week. "C" & "L" are out there (as I type this) running 7.7 miles (I'm so proud of them and jealous I can't hang my hat on that accomplishment too).

I literally have tried everything to fix this blister. I spent 3 hours yesterday trying to make my shoes more comfortable. I have purchased EVERY type of blister treatment and prevention product. I have at least 7 different types of shoe inserts/cushions. I have every kind of tape, padding, coating, bandage, etc. And today - - - I had them all in play trying to create something that would allow me to take strides without excruciating pain. NO LUCK!!!!!! I spoke with my awesome rehab friends "L" & "M" and they both agreed that I should not run today and that allowing the blister to heal should be priority numero uno! In my heart of hearts I knew that nothing good could come to my blister if I ran today, conversely it could become infected and take a week or more to heal which would sideline me more than just one day. See for yourself - sexy, huh?!?!?

I made the first call to "L" and said, "Hey "L", I'm not going to be able to run today." Know what her reaction was??? "OK!" I couldn't believe me she let me off the hook so easily. I was really shocked. I couldn't believe I didn't have to defend my reasons or submit proof (either photo or witness testimony from the PTs). Nope, just "ok!" Really????!!!!???!!! My next call was to "C". Her response, "Ok." Really??? I had stressed out all day not wanting to let my training partners down and to do everything possible to ensure that it was truly serious enough to take the day off of training. I am happy that they both were so understanding, but I hope they haven't come to just accept me as a wimp who quits often.