Monday, October 21, 2013

Never let the facts get in the way of a good argument.

I still have nagging aches and pains. Right foot issues. Left hip issues. I've been taking it easier all year and the plan calls for more of the same. No racing. But boy do I miss having a goal, something to think about other than work. The family time is great. I only run long-ish (90min currently) every other week. The odd week is a one hour run, short hill/power whatever kind of workout. I also run a couple days at lunch, between 3 and 4 miles. It's been easy to talk myself out of hunting for races until I saw this today:
Granted these two segments are short, so if I needed further evidence, well there's always this (trail runs greater than 8 miles since March, the foot injury taking place on March 30, hip flaring up June 1):
Okay, so the facts kind of call bullsh-t on the whole "my fitness is too far away to even consider a race" excuse. True I feel it is legitimate to say I don't have ultramarathon-like durability currently, and I can't even wrap my head around the thought of a painful 5k, but it's starting to look like I'm not an overweight, crippled, has-been either.

So do I stick to the "no racing" or do I find something, albeit "the right thing"? I still have occasional numbness in my left butt cheek, hip area. I (finally) got a foam roller and have been rolling the hell out of the piriformis and IT Band (you might have heard the screams). First thing in the morning I walk down the steps like an old man. I have a nearly impossible time finding shoes which feel comfortable on both feet. Is this just how it's going to be, and does it really matter? I can still do (almost) everything I choose. Sitting in a chair and/or sitting behind the wheel of a car are the worst experiences going. I have actually started standing in meetings. Once warmed up, I'm pretty "diesel-like" these days so warm-ups matter and they take longer, but after that I can crank it pretty well. And all while carrying 10lbs more than my Ironman race weight.

And on the flip side, work has been occupying too much of my brain lately. Who knew counting golf balls could be so stresssful. And you know what, that's the problem! They're friggin' golf balls, and people behave like we're handling cruise missiles! So yes, some stress relief is in order, but racing is not the only way, it's just always been my way.

So what's a fella to do? Do I stick with the original plan or do I try and find a race to run (you know if I don't do well I'll get all moody and grumpy moodier and grumpier)?

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Soccer mom triathlon

That was yesterday. With Leanna heading to Connecticut for some R&R, I got to spend some dedicated daddy time with Alex and Dylan (yes it does seem 'Alex' is becoming the approved shortening of her name). Because I'd be flying solo until Sunday afternoon, it meant long run Saturday. This was followed by Dylan's soccer game, lunch, Alex's soccer game and dropping Dylan at a birthday party (concurrent events), two hours of downtime, dinner out and a movie in.

Never disparage a single mom. And a single athlete mom, well, wow. The day went well. Other than a minor trauma, a lost earring at the soccer field, and general apprehension about eating out for the first time since her allergic reaction episode last Sunday (it was scary, more than just daughter traumatized), everything was fine. More than fine actually. I really enjoyed my time with them. I've been working longer hours lately and not spending quality time with the pair, just get them ready for school in the morning and check homework, jammies, and bed at night.

And amazingly I'm finding time to write again. Yeah the kitchen needs to be cleaned and the lawn cut, but that'll get done at some point. Yesterday was the Ironman World Championships, and yes per tradition I followed along, though not obsessively. An Ironman athlete tracker is like watching paint dry, in realtime. And per usual, what may well have been the most exciting finish of the day was missed completely by all apparent coverage. Let's hope a moto caught it so it can be aired next month.

So it was a day of reflecting on who I am now. I'm not currently a triathlete. I may or may not be able to return to it, especially at a reasonably high level. I'm a dad who goes running. I dabble with other "more intense" workouts but find I have little appetite anymore for the intensity. I have a feeling I'm viewed as the annoying soccer dad, yelling and cheering during the games. Texting the play by play to Leanna. I'd like to compete again but like Alex and eating out, I'm quite apprehensive about what would happen when I returned. I really like the thought of trail races...long ones. No sprinting, no lactate threshold, lungs on fire, puke fest. And while the duration of Ironman is about right, I would struggle to find the time to train and really have no desire to battle 3000 people for a patch of water. And I'd probably have to drop money on a computrainer because I am that uncomfortable on the roads anymore. Hell I rarely road run. Nothing relaxing about wondering which car will hit you. I'll take my chances with the coyotes.

I guess I'm a soccer dad...who runs a little (feed on left!).