Sunday, July 31, 2011

Winter tempearture I can handle

Distance 41.5km [total: minimalist 136.5km: Barefoot 1749.7km] Week 30

Wednesday, 27-Jul. 10km. 
Now this is more like the winters day I like, sunny for most of the day and a high of 20C, superb.
I did my standard 10km run and it was warm enough to feel the ground and get good feedback. I think I may have pushed it a bit much as my feet were a little tender later that evening. I was concentrating more on speed that form and that may have led to a bit more wearing of the pads due to the abrasive surface.
I really should slow down a bit and get the light quick foot touch and let the speed come on its own rather than force and by racing against the clock. Time 56:04m

Saturday, 30-Jul. 14.5km. 
Friday marked a very wet end to the working week. I'd decided on a gym workout rather than a run and it seems like it was a good decision as I looked out of the window to the rain bouncing off the road. I fell asleep that night to the sound of the rain. I seem to remember waking in the night and hearing rain. By morning it had stopped but there was plenty of water around on the roads and pavements. After a brief shopping trip I got to Grange jetty by around 9.30am, I wasn't feeling the best having woken up with a sore throat. I set off up the beach, the sand cold under foot. The sun began to burn away the cloud to the east and by the time I got to Semaphore jetty the weather had lifted my spirits.
I ran back along the road and trail and by the time I broke back onto the beach with about 2km to go it was a beautiful day. The sand reflecting the sun and now feeling warmer to run on. I added a burst of speed in the last kilometre. Time 1:25:43.

Sunday, 31-Jul. 17km. 
Once again, woke with a sore throat and feeling that I'm on the verge of coming down with a cold. I had an appointment to keep though for a run with Peter.
The day was bright and sunny so that inspired me. It had been down to around 6C overnight but must have been double that by the time I parked the car at Grange. The idea this time was to do the complete run to Glenelg and back that we didn't manage last week due to the bad weather.
It took me a while to warm up, the virus making my breathing a bit more laboured. The ground underfoot was cold as it was in the shadows cast by the 2 storey houses along the beach road. I looked forward to run on the opposite side where the sun had reached and added a bit of warmth.
Sunday seems to be the day that the majority of runners get out to do their runs. No barefoot runners were spotted. I began to get the spring back into my step after 3km. My feet were getting a bit sensitive on the path near the West Beach boat ramp, the brick pavers with the worn down surface exposing the sharp crystalline material they are built from. I made it to Glenelg , right through a big area of broken glass that I navigated through. After a few minutes rest we set off back to Grange. I was starting to tire at around 16km and the pavement was pressing into my feet. We switched to the beach for the remainder of the run.
I was quite happy with the effort, recording a time of 1:35:53.
Would a time of under 2 hours for the 21km be possible by Christmas, I think so.


Sunday, July 24, 2011

From Sun to Rain

Distance 45.5km [total: minimalist 136.5km: Barefoot 1708.2km] Week 29

Well, a good week of running there!
Wednesday, 20-Jul. 10km. 
An early break from work to get out on my usual 10km run along the walkway by the beach. The week has seem some cold nights but this also meant that the days had some sun. As I am writing this a few days later I don't think this was one of them. I ran a time of 55:54

Friday, 22-Jul. 10km. 
Ah some sunshine and I think I can just about make it back with some light left in the sky, no more stumbling through the dark (not that I was actually stumbling). The pavements had captured a bit of warmth from the sun during the day but it faded quickly. Sunset is now at around 5.28pm My time for today was 56:18.

Saturday, 23-Jul. 14.5km. 
A cold night of 5C. I checked my thermometer when I got up and outside it was a bit warmer than that now. I was hoping by the time I went out for my run at 9am a few more degrees would have been added onto the scale.
I got to the beach at just before 9am and found the tide at its high point and on its way back slightly. This meant I was running on soft, cold, well trodden sand. There were also many large furrow marks left by tractors moving sand around the beach and shoring up defences to the sea. It was a was a tough run, up and down troughs, avoiding the deep horse footprints. I kept my stride choppy and fast and that helped a lot with the balance of the uneven terrain. I ran back on the hard bitumen surface and made better time before slowing again on the rocky trail. I had a good burst of energy at the end and did a time of 1:30:56 by the end.

Sunday, 24-Jul. 11km. 
A friend of mine asked if I wanted to go for a run today. In his message yesterday he said the weather would be nice, the best day of the week, ummm. I don't think weather forecasting is his forte. I had all my running gear drying on the washing line outside on Saturday when it started raining and it was still raining this morning, retrieving it was not an option as it was still thoroughly wet.
My feet were feeling a bit sensitive from all the recent runs and I wasn't looking forward to a run in the rain and cold.
He did intend to run from Grange to Glenelg, a full 16km but I said my I would feel the cold too much in my feet on the wet ground. We did my usual weekday run but starting a bit further north. My feet were cold as soon as I stepped out of the car, it was 10C and raining lightly. On the return journey this changed to raining heavily. I ran as lightly as I could. I was soaked. Still I did enjoy the run. I shall give my feet a well deserved rest for a few days now, they have done me proud.


Monday, July 18, 2011

Longest hard surface run.

Distance 25.8km [total: minimalist 136.5km: Barefoot 1662.7km] Week 28

Thursday, 14-Jul. 10km.
The days are gradually getting lighter, 10 minutes of extra light from the shortest day. All this means I don't have to rush to get out as early so that I am not running in the dark.
The sun had been out during the afternoon and so there was a little residual warmth in the ground as I ran out to West Beach. That warm had gone by the time I made my way back. I recorded a time of 56:39m which was one of the better times I have managed. By summer I should have that down to the low 50's.

Sunday, 17-Jul. 15.8km. 
The plan today was for a run with Peter at 9am. I woke at 7.00am to the sound of heavy rain outside. Well, it may stop by 9am, I had breakfast and an hour later it was still raining and didn't look like it would stop any time soon. We called off our run.
I went to the gym and had a workout instead, working on chest and arms. The rain had stopped by the time I got out but it was still grey and cold outside.
By mid afternoon the clouds blew away and the sun came out and brought some warmth. I went to the beach and planned to run my usual road 10km then, if I felt good extend it further. I felt fine by the time I got to the caravan park so carried on towards Glenelg. In the end I ran all the way to Glenelg, a distance of 7.8km. I felt a little tired as I got to the 12km mark, the feet were cold and I didn't feel as smooth in my running form.
This would have been the longest distance I've run entirely on the roads. I did a foot check after getting cleaned up and my feet were fine, my form must have been good, no blisters or scrapes.


Sunday, July 10, 2011

Good long run.

Distance 33.5km [total: minimalist 136.5km: Barefoot 1636.9km] Week 27

Thursday, 7-Jul. 10km
First day without rain before dusk. A chilly day with the daytime temp hitting a max of 13C. I got to the beach a bit later this afternoon and didn't start my run until 5pm, I only had 20 minutes of light left. The sun had set even before I got halfway.
I was trialling Barefoot Ken Bob's advice of bend the knees even more that you think you should and, well yes, there was an improvement. You are powering your legs internal springs. I would never have imagined running could be so easy.
The ground was dry, there was a cold southerly blowing, only 10C when I set off. I was happy to be on the return journey and have that wind at my back instead of in my face. I was running in full on darkness by the time I got to Henley Beach, not many people around now, a few runners, finishing off their exercise for the evening.

Saturday, 9-Jul. 18.5km. 
I arranged to meet up with one of the people who came out for the International Barefoot Running Day event, Andrew, to go for a run.
The threatened wet weather didn't arrive which was good. I intended to just do my usual 14.5km run, up along the beach then back along the road and trails.
It is definitely easier covering the distance when you have a distraction in the form of chatting to a fellow runner. We arrived at Semaphore jetty in what seemed like a blink of the eye.
I was wondering what the people walking along the foreshore path were thinking as now two people were running without shoes... a 100% increase in numbers.
We were both still feeling pretty good by the time we got back to the start point so decided to run to the next jetty and back to add a further 4km to the distance.
Andrew had a huge Garmin sports watch which did everything except cook breakfast I would say. It had a GPS and so could record the distance ran. It turned out that my Google measurements were pretty accurate, it was 18.5km.

Sunday, 10-Jul. 5km. 
I didn't get a call from Peter to go for a run today, I had prepared just in case. I had my breakfast early and would have been ready if he wanted to put in a 7km like last week. So, I could relax and have a lie in instead.
I cycled down to the gym and did a workout which included some hamstring deadlifts (I must be used to them now as I and no longer crippled the next day) and some back exercises.
In the afternoon I did a short 5km Interval training session. After warm-up I would walk 100m, jog 200m then sprint 300m then repeat. I managed to cycle my heart rate up to around 146 and down to 100.
It wasn't the best of training runs, it was cold at just over 12C and very windy, I was only wearing shorts and a t-shirt and the muscles felt a bit stiff.

I'm well over half way through reading Ken Bob's 'Barefoot Running Step by Step' and have already made notes on a few things to improve my running, curl the toes up being one. This stops any blistering caused by friction as the foot lands on the ground. I think I was already doing it but it is good to have confirmation of the technique.


Saturday, July 2, 2011

Running in the rain

Distance 37km [total: minimalist 136.5km: Barefoot 1603.4km] Week 26

Monday, 27-Jun. 10km.
My usual road run for the evening. They day had been sunny and there was some residual warmth in the pavements while the sun was still up. The ground temperature seemed to drop once the sun fell below the horizon. I actually think it may be more due to the length of the run and the feet not being able to get enough blood down to then to heat them up rather than a sudden drop in surface temperature.
I must have been a bit heavy on my landing tonight as I had a bit of wear on the big toe on the left leg and pads on the right foot. I did do a good time so that probably added to the wear. You have to keep your form better the faster you want to move.
I'll rest up now until the weekend.

Friday, 1-Jul. 10km. 
An unseasonal warm winter day, 22C it got to today, fantastic. I was itching to get out of work early, for 3 reasons, one was the weather, second, I was feeling a bit stressed and third I had a headache. Running is the best medicine for stress and headaches, within 4km I was fine, at peace again.
With the warm weather the path surfaces were a few degrees warmer that I have had over the past month and I got no numbness in my feet, oh joy.
It was still dark when I finished my run. I will be glad for the extra daylight over the next few weeks. I will be able to see the ground again and not be as tense in my landing because my feet are searching for the ground.

Saturday, 2-Jul. 7km.
I woke to the sound of rain on the metal verandah. Rain had been forecast today and it sure had arrived overnight. Yesterdays warm weather has been chased away, replaced by more normal winter weather. Well, no point crying off, if you are a barefoot runner rain should be no impediment. I should feel more sorry for the people in shoes with soaked feet and squishing socks. I set off at 9.30am in pouring rain, only a short run today, I wasn't going to run 14km in a downpour.
I ran 3.5km along the road and through puddles but my feet managed to stay warm. I turned onto the beach to run back. The rain eased off for the return journey as I made my way up the deserted beach. As I was leaving the beach the rain returned, much harder now. I was pretty much drenched by the time I got in the car.

Sunday, 3-Jul. 10km
I had a call from a friend of mine early this morning, asking if I fancied going out for a run. I had just planed a workout day at the gym today, but, how could I resist.
It had been a chilly and wet night but the sky had now cleared but there was a strong northerly wind blowing.
I met up with Peter and 9am at Grange Jetty and we agreed on a short 7km run to the river and back. The ground felt cold underfoot as it was wet, the wetness conducts the heat out of your feet much faster than on cold dry ground.
There were lots of runners out this morning, far more than I usually see on a Saturday running the same course. I couldn't convince Peter to ditch his shoes, not even his orthotics. It's so good not to have to lug around and extra kilogram of weight on my feet. We ran back along the beach and straight into the wind which was quite strong by now. The sand was cold but manageable.
An enjoyable run that we will repeat on a regular basis.
After getting home I got changed and then did a workout at the gym for and hour, the afternoon was a relaxed recovery of just reading.
The early part of the week was very wintery, heavy rain on most days so I went to the gym instead.
I did run 3km on the treadmill, now that my form is better I find the running easier. The only problem was that the air conditioning was off and by the time I stepped off the treadmill my t-shirt was soaked in sweat, not only that but I just couldn't stop sweating, it was embarrassing.