Entries from April 2010 ↓

the knees and the lungs

I am making progress, but slowly.  I really, really struggle to finish the training that I’m supposed to do, but I do manage to finish it and I haven’t been discouraged enough to quit yet.  But my last two runs (higher speed & on the treadmill) have left me with soreness in my knees that persists for a day or two afterward.  It’s on the inside and feels like my knees will bend in either direction, so that’s kind of weird.  I googled it and got all kinds of terrifying results about how my legs are going to fall off, but I don’t really think that’s what’s going on.  The people I know who run say it’s probably because I’m heavy, and hopefully as I get lighter they’ll hurt less.

They don’t hurt when I’m actually running.  What hurts when I’m running are my lungs.  Everyone says to inhale for four counts and exhale for four, but I can’t get enough air that way.  I breathe in for two counts and I feel like I’m suffocating and I literally can’t get more air.  And this is when I use the inhaler ahead of time.  Asthma sucks.

I’m supposed to up my running this week to 1:30/3:30, but I’m not sure I’m ready.  I really struggled through the 1:00/4:00 intervals yesterday and had to add a total of three minutes of walking in order to get through the running.  I will try to do 1:30/3:30 tomorrow but I’m really not very confident about my chances.  We’ll see.  Is it better to get through six intervals of 1 minute running & 4 walking, or is it better to only finish a few intervals of 1:30/3:30?

It’s tough right now.  But I’m not quitting.  I will run those four miles in September if it kills me.  It’s just that lately I’m thinking it actually might.

so…can running faster be easier?

I completely and thoroughly forgot about running this weekend.  It was a fail in that sense, but I’m not too upset about it.  Seth and I have been extraordinarily busy and traveling a lot for a couple of months now, and this past weekend was the first time in ages that we could just sleep in and chill and lounge and do whatever we wanted.  We won’t get that chance again for at least another month, maybe longer.  So I don’t regret not running.  I needed to rest and recharge with my love.

We were supposed to run yesterday, but plans fell through.  I was feeling antsy for some activity, though, so I took Bean out for a short hike.  We did a portion of the Alpine Trail at Riverside Park.  Most of it was easy, but the last section was crazy steep and I thought I’d never make it to the top.  Bean’s a pretty awesome hiking companion, as it turns out.  He’s not as jacked up as he is on the flat paved trails, and he sticks closer to my tempo.  It was a fun way to do something active even though there were about 900,000 gnat-fly-things everywhere.  This is why I kind of don’t like nature.

This morning, Seth and I decided to go to the gym, and since I didn’t run yesterday I decided to give it a try on the treadmill today.  I know everyone says that running outdoors is more challenging and more interesting than treadmill running, but I actually feel like I had a better workout today than I usually do on the trail.  For my four-minute walking intervals, I stayed between 2.7 and 3.0.  For my one-minute run intervals, I went at 5.0 mph.

By the fourth run interval, I was really struggling for air (forgot to use inhaler ahead of time) and could only make it through about 35 seconds.  I was going to tack it on at the end but we were getting short on time, so I just decided to run my last interval faster and call it even.  It was an interesting experiment.  Moving to 5.5 mph actually forced me to lengthen my stride and stretch out my legs a bit, which made for more comfortable running than I had been doing at 5.0.  I’m not sure why that is.  I may try my next few runs at the gym just to get an idea of pacing.

clomping, wheezing, thunderstorm running

I ended up missing just over a week of training – four sessions, to be exact – because, as it turned out, dying from the plague was taking up a lot of my time.  No, seriously.  In case you haven’t heard, my eardrum ruptured, I went to three doctors in the space of two days, and I missed two and a half days of work.  It was pretty nasty indeed.

But this past Tuesday, even though I was still feeling kind of lousy, I felt like if I didn’t drag myself out to the trail, I’d never get back to it.  Sammi and Jamie and I coordinated meeting shortly after 5.  Since we’d missed a week of training, we decided to do that week we missed.  So that means for this week and next week, our training sessions are 24 minutes of walking and 6 minutes of running.

On Tuesday we were in a hurry, so we didn’t go in as far on the trail as we usually do.  But even so?  That run sucked.  It sucked so hard that I cried about it later and used it as further evidence that I Sucked At Life.  (I was building a case, see.)  We decided to split up the intervals into 8 minutes of walking and 2 running, and dude.  I just could not do it.  I used my inhaler ahead of time, I have arch inserts in my shoes now, and I was worse than the worst contestants on the very first episode of The Biggest Loser.  I clomped and wheezed my way through the slowest, most difficult forty-five seconds of running I’ve ever done in my life, and that was the longest interval I managed that day.  Forty-five measly seconds.  I ran ten here and thirty there and it MIGHT have added up to three minutes out of thirty.  But somehow I doubt it.  I kept trying to tell myself and S & J that the next one would be better, the next one would be better, but I was miserable.

Today we vowed to do it better.  We decided to take Bean out with us, and to adjust so that instead of walking 8 minutes and running 2 minutes three times, we walked 4 and ran 1 six times.  The only problem was that it was supposed to rain this afternoon.

And rain it did.  But for some reason we felt really motivated and decided the rain wasn’t that bad and we’d go out and brave it.  And I’m still fighting off this infection, but I used my inhaler and felt like I finally had the energy to give it a shot.

You guys, the rain was totally bad.  And I was wearing my glasses, so partway through I decided to put them on my head like sunglasses and run blind.  And my dog, my little web-footed water dog?  Yeah, he HATES the rain and he hated me for making him go out in it.  So we were soaking wet and it was kind of nasty outside and we had to start counting approximate intervals instead of drowning the iPod, but dude.  I ran a portion of all six intervals.  For three of them, I made it through the full minute running.  I made it about thirty seconds on the other three.  But I ran!  I’m still sick and it was pouring rain and my puppy was miserable and trying to hipcheck me the whole time, but I RAN.

And I would like to share that my ass is really sore from it.