Friday, December 28, 2012

Calf blow up again

Distance 16km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 4083.9km] Week52  Yearly total 2052.2km

Monday, 24-Dec. 11km

Ah the Christmas holidays are here now so it's time to relax or rather in my case I can go for my morning run at 7am not 5.30am, so that is relaxing in my books.
Today's run was my usual along the beach path. Quiet morning this time due to the absence of early morning exercisers. Legs felt good, still have the stiffness in the right calf but that clears up after a few kilometres. I ran back along the beach and felt pretty good by the end. I waded into the water to cool off the calves after the run.

Tuesday, 25-Dec. 5km

The day of the race. My alarm went off at 5.25am. I got up, mixed a glass of energy drink and began to get things together for the race. Heart rate monitor, water, camera. The weather was perfect, the wind that was blowing yesterday had stopped and it was a calm cool morning. I got down to West Lakes by 5.50am and there was quite a crowd, bigger than in previous years.
We mumbled through a Christmas carol before setting off. My heart rate monitor refused to work, the battery must have run out in the transmitter. The watch just indicated it couldn't find a signal, oh well. I started from the back to slow my start then gradually began to reel people in as we ran along Frederick Road then turning into Trimmer Parade. I was aware of a bit of pain from my calf but nothing that has caused alarm in previous runs.
Trouble started as I approached the rowing club on the lake, the calf pain moved up a notch, I began to get worried. I slowed my pace down and mentally decided that I wouldn't be running 13km today it would only be 8km. As it turned out it wouldn't even be 8km. Within another 100m I felt a ping of pain through my calf and I couldn't run after that point. My race was over.
I was around 3km from the finish and had to limp back. It took me around 35 minutes to get back.
I felt so embarrassed about the fact that it puts the barefoot running in a bad light that I didn't hang around at the end, in fact I just walked past on the other side of the road, pretending I was not part of the event. I got straight in my car and headed home and put it all behind me.
No more running for a month.


Sunday, December 23, 2012

Almost years end

Distance 43km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 4110.9km] Week50

Monday, 17-Dec. 7km

After Sundays gym session my calves are stiff especially the left one. I did 12 x 3 sets of lunges with 30kg, I figured it would mainly hit my quads and glutes but it also got my calves.
So, running was hard work tonight. I started running along the pavement but I could feel the heat from the bricks, although only 25C today it was bright and sunny. I headed onto the beach after 1km, the tide was low so it felt better on my feet, I was determined not to burn them again, not in such quick succession anyway. My calf was tight all the way around.

Tuesday, 18-Dec. 10km

An early morning run, up at 5.25am and down at the beach by 5.40am. The calf was still tight but a bit better than yesterday. I ran along the road from Grange to West Beach. It was going to be  warm sunny day but now it was perfect, maybe 18C. The sun came up as I made my way back. I would like some more time to relax at the end of my run, take in the morning air but, no, I had to race back in the car to have a shower and some breakfast before heading off to work for the day.

Thursday, 20-Dec. 10km

This early morning it was quite cool, almost cold underfoot. It always takes me about 15minutes to wake my sleepy self up when I start run at this time of day. I feel a bit creaky, my feet feel more sensitive and muscles stiffer. By the time I have run a couple of kilometres I get into my stride and can start to relax. The usual Boot Camp trainees were being coaxed into action along the beach as I ran back, it must be tough not having self motivation.
I finish for the Christmas break on Friday so that means a bit of drinking then following that, on the Saturday, I have another drinking session to celebrate a friends birthday. I need to fit my running in between these events.

Saturday, 22-Dec. 16km

A warm 35C day ahead so I got to the beach around 7am. The sand was quite cold and my feet were cold for most of the outbound journey, the sand started to warm once the sun was higher in the sky. There was some firm wet sand to run on but this was being eaten up by the incoming tide which would reach it's high point at around 10am. I was still a bit creaky around the tendons, I will give them a soak in cold water once I get back. The return section of the run was better than the outbound which seemed to take ages as I have not run this far for around a month. As I'd only had my breakfast around 1 hour earlier I felt weak and lacking in energy, my stomach would have been still digesting the food.
I'll rest now until my Christmas day run on Tuesday.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Get the KM back up

Distance 35km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 4067.9km] Week49

Wednesday, 12-Dec. 7km

With a hot Adelaide day ahead the only option for running is in the early morning. I set my alarm for 5.25am. I had hoped to get to bed early but as it was our cinema night last night I didn't get back until around 10.30pm. When the alarm went off I still felt in a daze, I got myself up and had a glass of carbo fuel. I got to the beach at 5.40am.
It was calm at the beach, no breeze and definitely no strong sea breezes that normally pick up in the afternoon. It was around 28C as I set off for my run along the small strip of wet sand left by the receding tide. The sand alternated between firm and quicksand like. I ran on the sand to spare the blisters on my foot. The sun had just popped over the horizon at after 6.05am, the hills keeping me in shadow for 10 minutes after sunrise. A good run but hot work.

Thursday, 13-Dec. 10km

Even hotter night with the temperature still around 30C outside at 12.00am. I kept my windows shut as the inside temperature was almost the same as outside. I got my fan up and running for the first time this summer. I got to bed at around 9.30pm but it was a restless night. I did feel better this morning when I had to get up. It was around 25C before dawn, slightly better than yesterday. I ran along the footpath this time as there was very little sand to run on. I was careful to make sure I placed my feet correctly at each step so I didn't take the skin of the blisters. There were quite a few runners out this morning and I used a few as targets to catch. My heart rate was higher than normal at around 145bpm, probably due to the warm still weather.
At around 1pm, during my lunch break, I took the opportunity to do some surface temperature measurements using a digital IR probe with laser targeting. The ambient temperature was 35.7C.
So the results, which I averaged over around 8 measurements were as follows:
  • Brick Pavement = 54.8C
  • Bitumen            = 59.1C
  • Concrete           = 54.0C
  • Grass               = 32.0C
I did this same experiment around 3 years ago but using a temperature probe that had to be touched onto the surface. The values I recorded were much lower and lulled me into a false sense of security.
The values I recorded 3 years ago with a hotter ambient temp of 37C were as follows:

  • Brick Pavement = 48.6C
  • Bitumen            = 41.9C
  • Concrete           = 44.0C
  • Black path         = 49.3C
Anything above 45C would be risking blisters and the temperatures measured recently shows what can be expected during Australian summer weather.

Saturday, 15-Dec. 10km

I intended to go on one of my longer runs to Semaphore this morning but found the tide at its high point for the day and any firm sand was at an angle to make running uncomfortable. So I chose my normal road run down to West Beach from the Grange Sailing club. There were quite a few runners around at this early hour for a Saturday (7.30am). On the return journey I ran along the beach from Henley Surf Life saving club as enough firm sand was now available to run on. I didn't feel particularly fast on this run and my heart rate was too fast, I need to slow down.

Sunday, 16-Dec. 8.2km

The cooler weather returned this weekend which is good from a running point of view, I don't need and early start to keep out of the sun and heat. I did my lake loop, still getting a few niggles from my right Achilles, I think I have a tight spot in the lower calf that I need to use some pressure point therapy on. The blisters are starting to come off now as well, they should be fully repaired by the time I run on Christmas day in around 9 days.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

How you like your feet cooked, medium or rare?

Distance 34km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 4032.9km] Week48

Monday, 3-Dec. 10.2km

A breezy afternoon with a south westerly blowing, not as cold as it would be in the winter but cool. The ground was still warm though. It was almost as if the pavement had underfloor heating. I'm still not up to the speed I had before my slight calf setback and I still get a slight tendon tenderness, more so from running on the soft sand on the way back.

Thursday, 6-Dec 10.8km

The weather warmed up today, reaching 30C at its high point. I got to the beach at 4.45pm and had to decide if I ran on the beach or road. I chose the road as it felt OK under foot, warm but not blistering. This was concrete though which is usually the coolest surface to run on, this turned out to be correct. I could feel my feet starting to warm up as I moved onto the brick and hotter temperatures. By the time I got to the stretch of pavement from the Henley Hotel to the River I was getting a bit worried about burns, my feet were starting to protest the heat despite me running as lightly and quickly over the surface. I was glad to get back onto concrete again for the remainder of my outbound journey but now it was a bit too late, my feet were feeling cooked. I wasn't going to run back on the road, I had to head to the beach to cool them off. The seawater felt good but now my feet were very sensitive underneath. I also started to feel a bit weak from the heat in the last few km, maybe a bit of dehydration.

Saturday, 8-Dec. 13km

An early run today, up just after dawn and at the beach by 6.15am to beat the heat. It had been a warm night an was still around 24C now. I decided to keep the run short today as I noticed that my sore feet that I cooked on Thursday have blisters, one on each foot on the pads. The heat was obviously too much for them. So, no road running today, just a beach run.
I felt slow and tired due to the warm night and I was running into a warn north wind. My feet were ok at the half way point but started to get sore after another 3km, the blisters had started to rub again. I ended up walking the last 2km as running wasn't much fun. The question is, why have I not learned a lesson and not run on a warm day. I need to make a strict rule of thumb and say no road running if the temperature is over 25C and sunny. Early morning runs are good but they leave me very tired at the end of the day.

Sunday, 9th-Dec

No running today, my feet need some repair time. Instead I got on my bike and cycled to the gym. It has been quite a while since I've had the bike out and I could tell as I got a sore backside, even from cycling a short distance. I'm hoping the cycling will complement the running by hitting muscles that aren't being used as much as they be. I may do a beach run tomorrow.


Sunday, December 2, 2012

Into Summer

Distance 33.5km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3998.9km] Week47

Tuesday, 27-Nov. 9km.

Turning my early morning practice into practical use. A week of hot weather has been forecast, today up in the 30's so a morning run would be more sensible.
I got to the beach at around 5.50am, just before sunrise, but far from being no people around there were several runners already out. The body felt a bit sleepy at first but as soon as the feedback from the feet started to stimulate the brain I felt more alive. The ground felt good, a bit of warmth from the previous day as I padded softly along. I wasn't sure how the time and distance would work out so this was a trial run.
I found that I got back to the car at around 6.45am, by the time I got home and had a shower it was after 7am, I then shoveled some breakfast down. I ended up setting off for work at around 7.30am, 30 minutes later than usual.
I felt a bit sleepy by mid morning with my early start.

Thursday, 29-Nov. 9km.

A repeat of Tuesdays run, it was a bit warmer today, 18.5C when I set off, just over an hour later the temperature was 27C. When I parked up at the beach car park the moon was still up in the dark western sky. I arrived at the beach at 5.35am this time, no sign of the sun yet and far fewer runners. I had a good moderate paced run, I did get beaten by a runner on the way back, I just reminded myself that I wasn't racing and I was coming back from some calf strain so don't push it. This time I got back to the car at 6.30am and left for work at around 7.15am.

Saturday,  1-Dec. 9.5km.

The weather cooled off overnight as the wind changed direction to the south. I did an early run once more, not as early as during the week but at around 6.50am. It was high tide when I arrived at the beach so once more I ran along the Esplanade to the caravan park at West Beach. I took a different route on the way back. Once I crossed the river I turned onto Military Road and ran along the pavement. It wasn't as smooth a run as on the road by the beach, the roads themselves were very coarse chip seal and I had to slow down while crossing them.

Sunday, 2-Dec. 6km.

The first Sunday of the month can only mean one thing.... Barefoot Runners Meet. We gathered at the south end of West Lakes for an easy run around the lake at chatting pace. A triathlon was taking place on the other side of the lake and we would run on part of the course on the way back.We all got around the 6km without a problem, the weather had cooled over the weekend so we didn't have to contend with 30C at 9.00am.

December Meeting of Adelaide Barefoot Runners

Getting the feet warmed up for the run.

This will be the last meeting of the year but a few of us will run in the Christmas Day run on the 25th.


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Coming back

Distance 35.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3965.4km] Week46

Saturday, 17-Nov. 7km

I'm writing this a week late after resting for most of last week and only venturing out for a run on the Saturday. I ran 7km along the beach at an easy pace to see if my calf would behave itself. The tide was low and the weather perfect for running. Plenty of people walking along the beach. It is tough getting the distance into the legs back again. A 7km run feels like a 15km run, hopefully my fitness should return quickly.
I made the distance without any soreness which was a good sign.

Sunday, 18-Nov. 3.5km

Just an easy run at around 1pm with a friend from jetty to jetty, once again no problems to report.

Wednesday, 21-Nov. 3.5km

A short run after work on the soft sand, the calf was fine on this low stress run. THe beaches are starting to gain the summer populations of sun bathers an swimmers and also lots more runners than I will see in the winter

Saturday, 24-Nov. 13km

A warm weekend was forecast so I used this as an opportunity to see how an early morning dawn breaking run would go. I decided to give this a trial in case I get the hot days during high summer when it is far too hot to run in the afternoon. I got up at the usual time I would for work 5.45am. I wouldn't be able to have any breakfast as that would stop me running so I had a carb energy drink, some Vitargo, a non sugar based drink.
I got to the beach just before 6am, the sun would have risen 5 minutes earlier, the houses by the beach would block the sun for another 30 minutes. The temperature was around 20C but would climb rapidly as the sun rose.
My body started running slowly, I think it was a bit shellshocked to be doing exercise at that time of the morning. After around 3km I started to feel a bit better, it was just the distance I had to contend with now. I limited the run to 13km. At the halfway point the sun had risen above the houses but there was enough cloud cover to keep the temperature down. It wasn't a fast run, around 37m in both directions. When I got back to the start I soaked the calves in the seawater to cool them off. I was home and showered by 7.30am then relaxed and had some breakfast.

Sunday, 25th-Nov 8.2km

Two days in a row when I get out of bed at 5.45am to go for a run. This was my standard 8.2km lake run, I ran it a couple of weeks ago with John but rested mainly since then. At this time of the morning the lake was dead calm, the sun was just rising and most of the households around the lake were still asleep as I padded silently past. It is a very appealing time of day to run.... if you can get up. Next week most of the days are above 30C so morning running may be the best option.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Slight improvement

Distance 11.7km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3930.2km] Week44

Saturday, 10-Nov. 3.5km

A tryout day on my calf to see if it is progressing. I've not run all week and I was still getting some soreness during the week, Friday felt ok though. I headed to the beach, no heart rate monitor or worrying about time, just see what distance I can cover without the pain returning. I ran at a slow relaxed pace and the calf was fine the knot didn't rear its head. This has been the second week of layoff and calf injuries usually take 2-3 weeks to fix. I expect next week to be a low distance week as well.

Sunday, 11-Nov. 8.2km

John arranged to meet up for a run on the Sunday and as he was keep to go I ran a bit further than I should have. It was a warm and windy day, the strong north wind signalling that a change was on the way. We were running into the wind on the way out and with it behind us on the way back, the best way to do it. I was running at a faster pace than yesterday and this brought the calf knot out from its slumber to complain. I stayed as relaxed as I could and it didn't get any worse, in fact it almost felt better, but that was my warmed up state. We ran the 8.2km route John had a GPS and that confirmed that it was in fact 8.2km, my Google distance measurement was accurate. We covered the distance in 48 minutes, I am usually 5 minutes faster. My calf stiffened up after the short drive to the gym where I had a rather lackluster workout.
So, another week of resting before trying again.


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Nearly a Zero Week

Distance 6km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3918.5km] Week43

Sunday, 4th-Nov. 6km

I had some enforced rest this week while my calf or maybe achilles tendon sorts itself out. I had a meeting of the Barefoot Running group today but the numbers were reduced due to some competing events today.
I met John in the car park at the south end of West Lakes. It was a warm day, already in the high 20's. I took it nice and easy but I could still feel a slight pain from my leg. I was glad I took the shortened route, John was happy with the shorter course as well.
I'm beginning to think that the problem may be more with the tendon rather than the calf so that calls for some reverse calf dips for a while until it sorts itself out.


Sunday, October 28, 2012

Hoonis Australis

Distance 54km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3912.5km] Week42

Monday, 22-Oct. 11.5km

Ah, spring time and as I'm running back from West Beach, along the beach path I hear the first cry of The Hoon. The Hoon is the cousin of the Neanderthal, it survived and thrived in Australia's isolated environment due to lack of predators and a temperate climate.
The cry of "Get some fucking shoes on" as it speeded by was a sign of Spring's arrival. I tried to communicate with the Hoon by using sign language consisting of finger gestures but all this seemed to do was agitate the poor creature.
I anticipate if we get a warm summer that great herds of Hoons will gather at prominent beachside locations for their preening rituals, I shall need to prepare my communication technique just in case I need to negotiate my way past them.
The run today had a fast outbound leg and a more subdued end as I ran along the soft sand that was quite hard to get any decent speed along.

Thursday, 24-Oct, 11.5km.

A cool change came in today, the southerly wind is here again and I'm running into it and feeling pretty darn good. I just don't get that tiredness I used to get when wearing shoes. Once again I ran down to the boardwalk at West Beach, had a rest for a minuted then headed back, this time with a tailwind. There was some firmer sand on the beach today so I did a short 2km timed section from jetty to jetty and I recorded my fastest ever time, all be it wind assisted, I did a time of 9:09m. I'm hoping all these faster times are a sign that I can do a sub 20 minute for the Beach Bash next year.

Saturday, 26-Oct. 25km.

I managed another long one but was out of steam during the last kilometre again and walked it back through the incoming tide. The weather was fantastic, starting a bit cloudy but this burnt off after an hour and revealed a blue sky. The southerly breeze kept the temperature down but not enough to chill me. The feet began to get a bit sore in the last 5km and I didn't feel like I was going very fast, but, mainly I'm trying to build endurance and if I can keep doing runs of this length then I should be ok.

Sunday, 27-Oct. 6km.

Arrgghh, calf tightness!!! I embarked on my usual loop of the lake on a beautiful sunny Sunday morning. At around the 2km point I felt a bit of pain in the calf so I slowed up and relaxed and it went away. Now I was alerted to it and I had to make the decision if I go on my longer loop or opt for the shorter route. I decided that there was no point being a hero and as with all tightness, it always feels better when warm then gets worse when you stop and I didn't want to be further away from my car than is necessary. It started to tighten again around 1km from the end so I walked that last stretch.
I went to the gym after but didn't do any calf exercises and definitely didn't stretch. When I got home I went on my roller for a while and shall continue to do that through the day.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

More kilometres

Distance 69.7km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3858.5km] Week41

Monday, 15-Oct. 11.5km.

A warm day of 26C at its high but cooler as I start my run. A calm day, no winds blowing which is good. I parked north of the Grange Hotel to extend the run by a small amount. I'm getting some calf stiffness from my gym exercises on Sunday. I did some calf drops on my right leg and now I'm starting to pay for it. It will probably get worse tomorrow.
It's hard trying to balance running with weight training of the legs. It seems to be a choice of strength or stamina but not both. Since doing much more running my leg strength has decreased, especially the hamstrings. If I then do some leg strengthening it stuffs up my running for around 4 days, even when I'm not lifting heavy weight.
I could feel it in my legs, I loose a bit of the coordinated muscle communication that barefoot running relies on. This can lead to imbalances and injuries if I'm not careful, the things I was trying to avoid by strengthening the legs in the first place. I felt more tired on the return journey.

Tuesday, 16-Oct. 13.5km

A day off work due to sickness. I was feeling better by the afternoon, enough to have a go at running. I had a beach run towards Semaphore. It wasn't a good run. I felt tired, my legs were sore and I still suffered from the slight unsynchronised muscle contractions. On the return journey, the gentle breeze turned into a strong wind, my heavy legs gave up around 3km from the end so I walked. It seemed to be a very long 3 km after running for 10km, the distance goes by so slowly. Hopefully my next outing will be a bit better.

Thursday, 18-Oct. 11.5km

Ah much better! this is more like it. The legs have regained their strength and the foot sensitivity seems to have settled down. It was a warm afternoon when I set off, 27C I believe. Once again I parked the car out of the way of the congestion at Grange and added a bit more distance to the run. I could feel the heat this time and it pushed my heart rate up to above 140bpm. The ground was comfortable to run on, its not got to blistering point yet.
I ran the last 2km on the beach and had some competition from a another guy running barefoot. He overtook me a few 100m past Henley jetty, I managed to stick behind him I the reeled him in around 200m from Grange jetty. Then he let loose with a burst of speed and I couldn't catch him, a classic ploy to demoralise the opposition. Despite the loss it was a good training run.

Saturday, 20-Oct. 25km

First stop of the day was at the hairdressers to get the winter/spring growth cut off, it probably wont do much to improve my speed but it feels much cooler. Would I managed to get a decent long run in today without collapsing from fatigue, hunger or physical collapse, apparently so. The weather was perfect at around 20C, just a slight northerly breeze at the beach but lots of blue sky with a few Altocumulus floccus clouds, ah how wonderful the internet is for describing each and every situation. I started off slow until I warmed up then kept a fairly even pace from Grange Sailing Club up to Largs Jetty then back to Semaphore where I have a 5 minute recovery then head onto the bitumen for a few kilometres. I kept off the grass again this week as it is full of dry seeds that harpoon the underside of my feet. I felt quite good for most of the way, just in the last km was I feeling a bit too tired to carry on so I walked in the water to cool off. So, I completed a 25km and feel pretty good now, a few hours later.

Sunday, 21-Oct. 8.2km

Earlier in the week I had the impression that today was going to be cold and wet, but now that it is here it is far from that. It's bright and sunny but a bit breezy. I headed off for a loop of the lake feeling pretty good, no aches or tiredness from my 25km yesterday. Running along the west side of the lake I spotted some dog walkers up ahead, the dogs they were walking were Bull Terriers, I'm always little wary in case one takes a liking of my leg, mistaking it for a tasty bone. I did my usual throat clearing cough to alert them I was coming up behind them. It was then I realised it was my cousin Abigail and her boyfriend Lee. I stopped for a brief chat before setting off at a good pace. It was a good run, the legs and feet felt great. Maybe a record week for distance.


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Seasonal Change Blues

Distance 42.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3788.8km] Week40

Monday, 8-Oct. 15km

I left work this afternoon with a thumping headache caused by work pressures. I didn't feel much like going for a run but talked myself into it. It was a pleasant spring evening and now that we are enjoying daylight saving it's getting dark at around 7.30pm.
I was trying to clear my head as I ran up the beach but work issue kept spinning around in my head, it took around 7km to flush it out of my brain. I ran to Semaphore jetty then back along the foreshore path. When I got onto the grass section behind the houses near the beach I found that the grass, while soft underfoot during the winter, has now started to dry out. The carpet of flowers I ran through 3 weeks ago has now gone, replaced by thousands of small spiky seed heads that stuck into the underside of me feet. While is wasn't painful it wasn't pleasant. I shall avoid the grass for a few months to see if it improves.
The weather is due to turn wintery from Wednesday.

Saturday, 13-Oct. 19km

A perfect Saturday morning, no winds blowing one way or another along the beach, the tide was out, the only thing in the equation that was off was me. I didn't feel much like running when I set off so I started slowly, I perked up a bit after 3km but my heart rate was a bit high for the amount of effort I felt I was putting in, I kept adjusting my pace to bring the heart rate back to below 136bpm. I ran to Largs jetty then back to Semaphore where I hit the bitumen. I missed out on the grass stretch this time due to the amount of spiky seeds and ran back along the beach. I was starting to feel hungry. I planned to run 25km but I was running out of energy, my feet felt a bit sore too. I got back to where I had parked my car and decided I'd had enough for the day. Am I getting soft, should I have pushed on or was I doing the right thing and listening to my body. I hope the latter.

Sunday, 14-Oct, 8.2km

Another great running day out there. A bit of a northerly breeze but not that strong. I need to get some more running T-Shirts as my current ones are looking decidedly tatty. I would have had them quite a few years now and they are calling out to be turned into dusters. I don't want to complete the look of looking like a running vagrant with no shoes and tatty ripped clothing. I think I'm suffering from some kind of seasonal changeover disorder, the running was going great while running in the cold and wet but now I'm back to running in warmer conditions and warm ground I feel a bit off. My feet are a bit crampy, I may need to start taking some magnesium supplement. Anyway back to the run, I kept a steady pace all the way around and did a time of 45m, a bit slower than usual. I did get a boost to my speed when a girl passed me just near the Boulevard bridge on the lake, I gave chase but she out ran me, I could have caught up but my feet were trying to slow me down,


Sunday, October 7, 2012

Rest Week

Distance 30.5km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3746.6km] Week39

Monday, 1-Oct. 15km

Although this is a designated rest week, Monday was a public holiday here in South Australia, the weather was fantastic and so how could I not go out for a run. My feet were noticeably more tender, the increased distance has not given them time enough to repair on the underneath. Each time I would stand on a stone or shell it would hurt more than I would expect and that would make me more cautious. I still managed a good speed workout at the end between the two jetties. In fact it was easier on my pads running at higher speed because the ground contact was shorter. I shall now rest up for 4-5 days. I have a scheduled run on Sunday with the group so I may make that my next trip out.

Saturday, 6-Oct. 11km

Well, it should have been a rest day and it was very windy out by the beach, but, the sun was shining and I was tempted. The feet were still a bit over sensitive and if I stood on a small bit of grit on my callus it would send a sharp response to my brain 'don't do that again'. I ran into the wind on the way out and had it push me back to the start. As I have said before I have no problem running into the wind, I don't like it behind me though. I did a 2km beach stretch at the end recording a time of 9:30m and that was with my heart rate just above my aerobic zone, most of that speed was the wind pushing me forward.

Sunday, 7-Oct. 4.5km

We lost an hour of sleep tonight as South Australia switched over to Australian Daylight Saving time. It will probably catch up with me on Monday morning when I get up for work.
Today was the monthly meet of the Adelaide Barefoot Runners group, this time we had a new member join our ranks, John Middleton. The last time we met at the College Park run start it was mid winter and had just poured down with rain so was quite cold under foot. This time we are in Spring and the weather was perfect, around 18C, bright and sunny. Lots of runners along the river. As I was driving towards our meeting place I could hear the whooping sound of the primates at the zoo, it may have been the excitement from the arrival of breakfast.
David chose a different route from the last time. It took in plenty of grassy surfaces and nice smooth river pathways. Earlier in the day I had found what had been causing an irritation in my right big toe, a small sliver of glass which I found when digging around the area. I am more likely to have picked it up inside the house rather than outside but running probably embedded it a bit more. We ran around 4.5km at a nice easy pace, after which we found a local deli that served up coffee, we spent another 40 minutes chatting. It was a great little meet.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Another 60km+

Distance 62.8km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3716.1km] Week38

Tuesday, 25-Sep. 11km

Very enjoyable run at a good pace. My left calf was still a bit sore from the gym on Sunday but it didn't hamper my running. Lots of other runners out this evening, the warmer weather has seen them emerge from winter hibernation. I had to hurry up on tonight's run as I had to be leaving for the cinema at 6.45pm. I ran the last 2km along the beach, along the high tide line. There were too many piles of broken shells to put in a decent time but I did get my heart rate up above my aerobic zone.

Wednesday, 26-Sep. 13.5km

A beach run into the wind this evening as I ran up to Semaphore, the wind speed recorded at the airport was around 30km/h.
I should pick some different routes when it is windy such as along the river or around West Lakes, I have been stuck in a bit of a running route rut in that I always head out towards the beach after work. The tide was high again so I was running on soft sand and sand with a harder crust. The temperature got up to 27C today but was cooler by the beach, it still sapped my energy a little more than usual. On the way back I could feel the first pangs of hunger so I didn't extend the run any more than I had to.

Thursday, 27-Sep. 11.5km

Last of the warm weather days so I made the best of it and did a run along the road from Grange to West Beach. I felt tired this time, I think I may not have fully recovered from the other runs as my heart rate seemed higher than I expected. My soles felt a over sensitive as well and I seemed to find every small stone and bit of grit today. That may have been because my legs were tired they were more tense and so I landed with more force on all the small bits on the ground. The temperature will be dropping by around 10C in the next few days and the wind will pick up again, I may do a shorter run on Saturday.

Saturday, 29-Sep. 19km

Back to winter again today. Although it was mainly bright with a few clouds around there was cold southerly wind blowing. On the way up to Largs jetty it was behind me so I couldn't feel it, as soon as I moved in an 180degree arc to run back to Semaphore the chill cut right through me. I didn't fancy the idea of having to run 10km into this chilly wind so I thought of an alternative way back along the Military Road that would hopefully be more sheltered. I ran along the foreshore path then down onto the pavement along the main road, it cut the wind down substantially. I did manage to stand on a stone on my achy left foot which made it throb, it eased off and I continued running. After around 4km I thought I could run up onto the upper road, Seaview and along, but I found the path much rougher and my feet were feeling tender so I headed back onto the beach where I ran the last few km to the car. I need to rest my foot a little, I think the shift up to longer distances has irritated it.

Sunday, 30-Sep. 7.8km

After a small amount of rain just after 9am things began to get brighter and the difference at this time of year when compared to say July is that my feet don't freeze as there is more of the suns stored energy in the pavements and it feels warm. I did an easy run today, no stopwatch or keeping an eye on my heart rate, just run and stop anytime I wanted to see what was going on around me. I didn't pass any other runners along the lake but I did have a runner behind me, I slowed down for a while to see if he could catch up but he was a bit too slow for me so I took off again.
After the run, a short gym session then called in on an old work colleague to find out what life was like with his new employer. I need to find a new line of work, at the moment though I'm not sure in what area though.


Monday, September 24, 2012

Gradually warming up

Distance 54.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3653.3km] Week37

Tuesday, 18-Sep. 13km

Nice clear day and around 18C for the top in the early afternoon. By the time I hit the beach the temperature had dropped slightly and the sea breeze had picked up. I ran with the wind towards Semaphore this evening, the tide was high so I had plenty of soft sand and broken shells to negotiate. I ran at a nice easy pace, enjoying the evening sun as it slowly made its way towards the western horizon. At first I thought I would run on to the jetty but I could tell by the height of the sun that if I added an extra 15 minutes onto my run the sun would be down and the wind would feel all the colder. I ran back along the footpath then back onto the beach before Escourt House. By the time I got back to Grange jetty I was feeling quite hungry so I didn't run any further past my car. I called it a day at 13km.

Thursday 20-Sep. 11km

Spring is the best time of year. The ground has the warmth to feel the textures of the surfaces I'm running on but the dangerous foot burning heat has not arrived yet. A good run this evening. The wind was a westerly rather than blowing in my face or back. I've noticed that as the season turned it was like a signal to the runners to re-emerge from their winter sleep. I've been running all through the winter and its been mainly solitary but now, there are runners everywhere. On the way back from West Beach a couple of runners passed me going quite fast, I tried to catch them but I was outpaced, they started to increase the distance. I think they must have been doing some fast paced training as I passed them 1km further on as they stopped. I need to run with the faster crowd to boost my speed. I did the last 2km along the beach at high tide, dodging in and out of the waves and still did a good 9:40m for the distance.

Saturday, 22-Sep. 22km

What a battle against the wind today! A weather change was heading in and as always in Adelaide there is a northerly wind before the change. It was forecast to be a warm 27C today. I set out for my run at 9.15am running north to Semaphore then on to Largs. As soon as I set off I was running into a headwind and easterly blowing at around 40km/h (these are from the Adelaide Airport observations), on the beach where there is no shelter from the wind the gusts were up to 50km/h. Even though I was trying to keep a relaxed pace my heart rate was up near 140bpm. I ran 10km into this wind before turning around and heading back. Now you would thing that having the wind behind you would be a good thing, usually it is when it is a gentle breeze but when it is a strong gusty wind it blows you forward  and upsets my rhythm. My usual gentle landing is compromised and I land heavier. That's not a big problem on the beach but it still makes my feet feel the friction more. I had intended a 25km run today but the windy conditions sapped my energy at the end. I turned around at Henley jetty and walked back to the car.

Sunday, 23-Sep. 8.2km

I wake up on Sunday morning and the wind is still blowing, but thankfully the colder air has not arrived yet. Running around the lake is more sheltered than running along the beach but saying that is was still very windy on the return half of my run. It was a westerly wind and was due to turn into a colder southerly by the afternoon. The run went well, I didn't sprint over the last kilometre as I would have been running into a headwind so I just took it easy.


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Highest KM in 20+ years

Distance 64.7km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3599.1km] Week36

Monday, 10-Sep. 7km

Only time for a short run this evening as I had a movie night in the city later on. I ran along the road from the sailing club to the river outlet then ran back along the beach. I put in a good effort all the way up the beach, the heart rate monitor was beeping in the last kilometre as I pushed out of the aerobic zone. These are the kind of workouts that runners hate, were the body is shouting at the brain to stop or slow down. The more of this kind of running I can manage the better the racing will become.

Tuesday, 11-Sep. 13.5km

First of the warm spring days. The temperature got up to 24C today, it would have been a bit cooler by the time I got to the beach but I noticed the difference. I had some dryness in my throat and I felt more fatigue. I kept a steady heart rate of around 130 bpm and tried to run in an efficient energy saving manner. I started to feel hunger creeping into my stomach on the way back. I had intended to run around 16km but the sun was starting to set when I got level with my parked car, I would have had to continue running for another 12 minute and I didn't have the energy.

Thursday, 13-Sep. 11km.

Lots of runners out this evening, all getting in their last training before the 12km City-Bay on the Sunday.
A friend of mine is running in it so I'll probably go down and have a coffee with him after the race. He is suffering with a calf injury at the moment which he is hoping will dissipate before Sunday. Calf injuries take a while to work through.
I'm glad we have the extra daylight at this time of year, I don't have to rush out of work in order to get to the beach before 5pm. At the moment the sunset is at 6:07pm.
A good paced run at the top of my aerobic band with a burst at the end as I chased down a hare. As I was running along the pavement just north of Henley Square a girl running at a good pace was running in the opposite direction, she was running quite fast as she must have turned around at the jetty and caught me up around 50m from where the path leaves the road. That was the challenge! I trailed behind by around 10m managing to match her pace. I had to slow going across the rough bitumen near the sailing club but then it was concrete all the way back to the car. A 500m chase. I caught up around 100m from the end then took off at full speed, pushing the heart rate up to 150bpm. I reached the coffee shop and slowed. The hare was about 20m behind. I was going to say "Hi, good race" but she had a bit of pained expression on her face so I let it go.

Saturday, 14-Sep. 25km.

The longest run for well over 20 years. I set off at around 9.30am, the tide was at it's low point for the day. It was warm enough for shorts and T-shirt, a slight northerly breeze, not enough to chill me on the run. I ran north to Semaphore jetty and the further to Largs jetty another 1.58km. I felt a bit sluggish at the start as my breakfast was still hanging around. I felt ok by the time I got back to Semaphore jetty to do a stretch along the footpath, the extra 3km would start to affect me in the last part of the run. My feet felt a bit tender at times, as I started to tire and didn't land them as gently as I could. I was glad to get back to the car at the end, I had put sunscreen on but I was still out for over 2 hours so I have to be careful.

Sunday, 15-Sep. 8.2km

My usual morning run was moved to a late afternoon run as I went to watch the City to Bay run in Glenelg during the morning. I got to Glenelg and parked the car a couple of kilometres away, it began to rain as I walked to the main street where the runners would run down. My timing was good, the rain stopped and the sun came out and shortly after the first runner came racing down the street with quite a large gap between himself and the next runner. The first runners had a great style and as more and more runners came past the style became more varied from neutral to bizarre. Also the expressions on faces looked more pained in the slower runners.
The weather picked up in the afternoon after another bout of rain as I walked back from the race. I did my usual 8.2km loop at an even pace, no racing at the end this time. This was my highest distance week in many years.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

3 Years of Barefoot Running

Distance xxkm [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3534.4km] Week36

Monday, 3-Sep. 13km

For a change, I had a beach run this evening, I was feeling tired after the first day of the working week so a relaxed run would be a good way of getting a few kilometres in and not exhausting myself further. The tide was almost at the high point for the day so I had soft sand to run on and lots of shells. I started the run lacking enthusiasm but by the end I felt much better. For most of the run my heart rate would have been under 130 bpm so it was good aerobic base building.
There was a fantastic sunset on the way back and as I got back to my car I sat for a while looking out to sea as the orange glow slowly faded. The first bout of warm weather has brought droves of runners out, many probably shaping up for the City-Bay run in a couple of weeks.

Friday, 7-Sep. 10km

After a week of wintery weather that put a stop to my running I managed to get out on the Friday. It was still cold and there was a strong westerly wind whipping up the sea into a frothy frenzy. I ran along the beach tonight, from Grange Sailing club to Grange jetty then back down the beach to the river then back up, into the strengthening wind, to the West Lakes inlet pipe before turning back to the car. What a relief to get out of the icy wind and into the warmth of my car. So, just because we are in September doesn't mean spring is here to stay.

Saturday, 8-Sep. 16km

Again, I hoped the cold windy weather would have blown itself out and be replaced by calm sunny weather. As I was getting ready to go out it looked bright and didn't feel cold outside. I tossed up about just wearing shorts and T-shirt rather than leggings and long sleeved top, I went for the latter in the end using the logic that it is better to be warm and take something off than cold with nothing to put on.
I'm glad I did. I got to the beach at 9am and there was the westerly wind again, foamy surf, it felt cold. In the first few kilometres the sun sneaked out and I thought the suncream might be worthwhile after all. After another couple of kilometres I noticed the low black clouds out to the west, it was raining out at sea and it was heading my way. I thought I might be able to out run it but it came in fast, the air chilled and the rain started to fall, blowing sideways with the wind. I got a good soaking but missed the bulk of it which was a bit further north. I reached Semaphore jetty then ran back along the wet footpath, my feet were slapping a bit too much, they were cold and numb. I headed back to the beach after a couple of km. After another 3km I felt sapped of energy. I hap intended to run 22km today but there are certain days when you just have to throw in the towel. I got to my parked car after running 16km feeling exhausted, I didn't have another 7km in me today.

Sunday, 9-Sep. 8.2km

I believe it would have been about this date 3 years ago that I first took up my quest of changing my running style and running without shoes. I have covered quite a distance since then. My running is mostly free from injuries now except for the odd tight calf or some minor thing. So despite the Professor of Sports Science at Uni SA saying that barefoot running will cause injuries, I think the onus is on him to prove that shoes stop runners getting injured. Of course he can't do that because the data shows that runners in shoes (myself being one) get injured at a much greater frequency than is acknowledged
Todays run was done in spring sunshine nice and relaxed. The ground felt perfect under foot not cold and not too hot. Now that I can get more ground feedback from the feet without them being too cold I will look to get more speed in my running. First objective is to get the distance to 60km per week.


Sunday, September 2, 2012

15 Minutes of Fame (or Less)

Distance 52.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3534.4km] Week35

Monday, 27-Aug. 11km

A cloudy but calm day, I was holding out for a 20C day but we got only 18C. The local newspaper published a brief article on my barefoot running and of course an expert had to come out swinging and scream "fad' but then maybe shoes are the fad seeing as they have been around for a fraction of time that humans have been in existence.
I did a relaxed 11km, or tried to keep at a slower heart rate, it does creep up to the upper end of my aerobic range. I want to try to keep the the 10/90 rule 10% anaerobic and 90% aerobic. So that means if I'm running 50km per week I don't want to run more than 5km above the 137 BPM rate. If I can increase my aerobic base to 60km then 6km can be at race pace. To run a 10km at race pace I need to get up to 100km per week.

Thursday, 30-Aug. 11km

A battle against the 30km/h winds this afternoon. I'm hoping that this will be one of the last days of winter type weather. As I've mentioned in the past, now that I have altered my running form so my foot doesn't land miles in front of me, I no longer find it tiring running into a headwind, I just put a little more lean in and let gravity pull me forwards. I've not found the ground too cold in the last few months either, I'm wondering if I have acclimatised now and my feet don't feel the cold. I'm quite happy to walk around outside at night, putting my washing out and I can stand on the cold wet concrete and hardly notice it.
I've been looking through the local road runners website deciding on the first race for the year. I don't do the City-Bay as there are too many people in it but there is another race in November, The Glenelg Classic that I might have a go at. It follows the path along the shore from Glenelg to West Beach and back, a run I have done a few times. That would be my first fully priced run if I did that.

Saturday, 1-Sep. 22km

Yay, first day of Spring and a clear blue sky greets me as I head to the beach. There is a bit of a chilly north east breeze blowing but the wind is much reduced from Thursday. The tide was out as far as it was going to get today, I had plenty of sand to run on. I felt quite relaxed on the run up to Semaphore. I was a bit more tired on the way back or maybe I just thought I was. I think I should be running faster but I'm already going at a good pace and this is meant to be an endurance run not a speed run. I still haven't cracked the 2 hours so I'm not going to increase my distance until that happens. We have a 25C day next week before the temperature drops once again later in the week. Tomorrow is the monthly run for the Adelaide Barefoot group, but I'm only expecting one to turn up. I've not had much more recognition from runners since the article in the paper.

Sunday, 2-Sep. 8.2km

Well, a lone barefoot runners meet this month. I went to the gym at 9am as I had scheduled the run for 10.30am. I did some back exercises and some legs. As I run more than do weights my legs feel weak when it comes to the weights. I'm not lifting super heavy or anything but even what was my starting weight now feels heavy. I didn't want to do to much or my legs would seize up on the run. I think the barefoot running builds the calves and leaves the quads and hamstrings as they are not the main muscle to stabilise the foot.
After the gym I headed out to the car park by the lake to see if anyone would turn up, the time ticked past 10.30am and no one appeared so I set off. I didn't have my sports watch on so I took what I thought was an easy pace, I was in no rush. My feet got a bit tender on the last couple of km. We had our first warmer day of spring, the concrete was no longer cold I could feel the warmth on my soles, before too long I'll be worrying about burning my feet.


Sunday, August 26, 2012

Last week of Winter

Distance 52.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3482.2km] Week34

Monday, 20-Aug. 11km

Sore calves today. The speed work yesterday on the road and beach must have stretched my calves. Today, even though I was on an easy run day there was no way I could have run fast my calves would have cramped up.
A reasonably warm winter day with a strong northerly breeze. It did get chilly towards the end of the run but I managed to beat the sunset! I soaked my calves in the cold seawater for 5 minutes after the run, that felt cold. Hopefully my next run will be a bit better.

Wednesday, 22-Aug. 11km

Put in another 11km just on the verge of a cold wet changed heading in. During the day, while I was at work the weather was beautiful, a few clouds and 20C, that is when I should have been going for a run. As the time approached 4pm dark clouds were covering the sky, looking at the weather radar a rain bad was moving in, it was around 20km off the shore. I raced home in a bit to beat it. I got changed and headed to the beach as the rain started, as I parked, the wind and rain buffeted the car. I sat there for 10 minutes, relaxing before calling it a day and admitting defeat. Then the rain stopped and the wind dropped. The squall had passed. I went for my run on the wet slightly slippery concrete, there was still warmth in the ground. The calves were feeling much better tonight and I was back to running at my regular speed. I ran along the high tide line for the last couple of kilometres on the way back.

Saturday, 25-Aug. 22km

A cool windy day form my run, it started bright so I put sunscreen on my face but it clouded over about halfway through my run. The first third of the run was into a decent headwind which slowed me down, a few beers I had yesterday also didn't help, I'm not much of a drinker these days and my tolerance is well down. At Semaphore it was off the beach and onto the bitumen path. I chased down a runner in front who must have felt insulted to be passed by a barefoot runner so accelerated to pass me and stay in front. I turned his relaxed run into a race :-)
Now running back I had a tailwind and made up some time that I'd lost in the other direction. I felt much stronger in the last few kilometres of my run today, even when I was, once more running into a chilly headwind. I keep scouring the weather forecasts to see when we can expect some more days in the low 20's, we have only had 1 so far then its back to the low to mid teens. The winter seems to go on forever, its been very long this year.

Sunday, 26-Aug. 8.2km

Ah, a calm day, no blasting wind or rain, some weak sun shining through interlaced clouds. It was a great run today, the legs felt light and bouncy, I could have run faster but it was meant to be a relaxed run. I did a bit of trigger point roller massage before the run and I'm wondering if that helped with the relaxed feeling in the calves the running. I put in a good effort over the last section recording 5m 53.4s, not the fastest I've done that part but not too bad. I did a gym session after the run, lots of shoulder work, not heavy but lots of repetitions.


Sunday, August 19, 2012

Stormy Week

Distance 45.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3430km] Week33

Monday, 13-Aug. 11km

Well, the apparent sore hip area was not what I at first thought. It wasn't a leg problem but the indicator of a back problem, the good old sciatic nerve! I must have put some pressure on the discs when doing either shoulder presses or leg presses at the gym. I actually came up with the idea that is was my back while asleep dreaming. My subconscious must have been sifting all the information and drawn this conclusion which it them passed on to my conscious mind so I could do something about it. Now I know what it is I know how to treat it. I went for a run of 11km and took it nice and easy the entire way around, my heart rate only getting above 130 bpm towards the end of the run, all the rest of the time it was around 127bpm. I almost didn't feel like going for a run an hour before I set out. The idea of an easy run was a great solution rather than just not running, I felt much better at the end. There wasn't much sun about so it got dark quickly while I was running back along the beach.
The forecast for the week is for cold, blustery and wet weather for the end of the week. Wednesday or Thursday will be my only weekday opportunities to run, Friday I'm out for a free posh meal care of my employer.

Saturday, 18-Aug. 22km

After a week of cold stormy winter weather that stopped my running in the latter part of the week, Saturday morning comes, the wind drops and the sun shines, wonderful.
I got to the beach at 9.30am and ran north to Semaphore. The sun shone and while it felt good I started to worry about getting too much sun if I was running for 2 hours. It felt warm as I ran so I ended up taking my long sleeved top off, it got put on again once I changed direction on the run back, there was a cool breeze and with the sweat on my t-shirt I could feel the warmth being sucked out of me. No a bad run all in all considering I had a late night and several glasses of wine. I did consider extending my run by a couple of km but I felt a bit tired at the end and thought I'd been out for long enough.
I was contacted in the week by a reporter from the local Adelaide paper who was interested in doing a story on barefoot running. I'm due to meet up with a photographer tomorrow. I'm not sure how they are going to construct the story, I did send an email with some information on as I don't think they will be sending anyone out to do a real question and answer session. I just hope it is not the usual cut and paste compilation of dangers of barefoot running.

Sunday, 19-Aug. 8.2km + 4km

After a dull start the sun began to break out at 10am. This warmed the concrete up for my feet. The early run was a run in two halves. The first half I didn't feel smooth, I could hear my foot slapping the ground louder than they should have been, a callus on my left foot was a bit tender. As I run clockwise around the lake I'm running on a slight incline with the left leg higher up than the right, this is what put pressure on the callus. I think yesterdays long run had also take a bit of spring out of my legs. I began to get my rhythm back by the halfway point, and I put in a good sprint at the end with a time of 5m53s.
In the afternoon I had a photo shoot appointment with a photographer from the local Adelaide paper for a story they were doing on barefoot running. It was a nice sunny afternoon so I wore my shorts and IBRD T-shirt. The shoot consisted of me doing some sprints along the concrete, so slow motion type runs and some stationary where I sat on the ground with my feet crossed in front of me. Unlike Naomi Campbell, I didn't get paid!
After the photos, as the weather was nice I went for a second run along the beach, a 4km Fartlek session, 2 minutes fast, 2 minutes slow. That was a short but tough session. The speed will come in useful during the summer races.


Sunday, August 12, 2012

Getting closer to Spring

Distance 52.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3384.8km] Week32

Monday, 6-Aug. 11km

Good run this evening in the last of the evening sun. Once again the temperature drops quickly once the sun sits on the horizon. I say good run although my upper hamstrings were a bit sore, I believe that was due to combination of lunges at the gym on Sunday and the fast sprint up Sportsman's Drive with the others from the barefoot runners group. I felt I was slapping my feet down a bit, I wasn't as quiet as usual. I ran the last 2km along the beach again, dodging in and out of the water of the incoming tide.

Thursday, 9th-Aug. 11km

With the sunset at 5.40pm I am almost able to complete my run with the sun above the horizon. Tonight, as I raced along the beach trying to beat the last rays cast off from the sinking sun I was around 150m from the end of my run at the jetty. It spurred me on to record another good time on the distance between the jetties of 9:32m, about 5 seconds off my best but I'm getting some consistency now. Maybe the longer aerobic runs are helping with my speed. My hip area was still a bit sore but not enough to hinder my run.

Saturday, 11-Aug. 22km

Saturday morning, a cold start, but I don't seem to be noticing it as much these days in my feet. The first year I was acutely aware of how cold it felt under foot and I wasn't sure if I was cut out to run barefoot but now, I must have acclimatised. I took it nice and easy today and ran a short distance with another runner going in my direction from the jetty at Semaphore back to the surf life saving club at about 3km further on. It's always good chatting to other runner, it takes your mind off the road for a while. I did a time of 2h04m20s. I'm not feeling as tired over the last few km now. I might even take on the half marathon at the Christmas fun run if I can get my time under 2 hours.

Sunday, 12-Aug.  8.2km

I'm on my own on the lake run this week. The Team Barefoot have gone about their own running schedules until next month. The morning was bright and sunny but it started to cloud over while I ran. The sun warmed the concrete slightly so I had some good feeling from my feet. I didn't see as many runners out as I saw last week, maybe 10.30am is their favoured start time. My fast section was a bit slow this week at 6m04s but I knew it would be as my heart rate monitor only started beeping towards the end which meant I had some unused reserve. It's looking like I'll be at 3,500km by spring.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

August Barefoot run meeting

Distance 50km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3332.6km] Week31

Monday, 30-July. 11km

I wasn't sure if I felt like going for a run this evening after a busy day at work but once I was on my way home I began to get the feeling I wanted to run. It was a cool day but fairly bright, no rain today.
I parked my car at Grange and did the run to West Beach. The last 2km I ran along the beach to time myself. When I stopped my watch at the end I couldn't believe the time. I knocked over 15s of my time running from jetty to jetty and this included having to weave in and out of patches of broken shells. At a couple of points I stood on sharp shells but I felt like I was running a good time but when I saw 9:27.9m. Maybe I'm on my way to getting below 20minutes in the beach run in March next year

Wednesday, 1-Aug. 11km

Last of the sunny days as the rain heads in again overnight. It was a chilly morning, down to 2C, there was plenty of frost around. As I walked to the car (barefoot) on my way to work, I could feel the chill. I wonder how long I could run on this cold surface, my feet would be numb for sure. A cold night means a sunny day and it was beautiful. I got out of work at 4pm and got to the beach at 4.50pm. The sun was up and I could feel some warmth before it faded away. It seemed to cool down really fast. I ran mainly along the road and the last 2km on the beach once more but this time in a more relaxed pace, I took it easy as I didn't want to run hard on too many occasions. I need to get the kilometres up. I'll try and get to 60km per week by the end of August.

Saturday, 4-Aug. 22km

A chilly grey start to my Saturday run. I had my hands pulled into the sleeves of my top to keep warm. I was running into a breeze from the north which felt chilly, the temperature was just over 10C. At the 6km mark I thought I was heading into rain, visibility closed right down as low cloud blew around. I had 1km to get to the jetty and turn around and get that wind behind me. Within 5 minutes the cloud blew away and the sun came out and shone some warmth out on me as I reached the jetty and had a short walk off the beach and onto the bitumen walkway that I run along on the way back. I had a good run all the way back to the river which then leaves me another 3km to get back. Those last 3km were tough as the wind speed increased to a 28km/h headwind. I just lowered my head and dug in and kept placing one foot in front of the other. What a relief to get back and sit in the shelter of the car and drink down some water.

Sunday, 5-Aug. 6km

Meeting of the Adelaide Barefoot Runners group. We ran what would be my usual lake run but a shortened version, missing out the small loop on the upper part of the lake. The day had started off in a not too promising rain shower. I went down to the gym for a session early on then made my way to the car park by the lake to meet the others. We took it at a leisurely pace for most of the way around, I got them to run a bit harder along the concrete footpath where I always practice my faster paced running at the end. They did quite well coming in about 90 seconds after I arrived. We all went to the local coffee shop after where they had a roaring fire. The rain returned shortly after we got there.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

No virus slows me down

Distance 53.7km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3282.6km] Week30

Monday, 23-July. 13.5km

A day off work due to my head cold. I was coughing and sneezing for a large part of the day so spent the afternoon in bed asleep. During the morning, as the weather was so nice I went out for a beach run, the virus was not affecting my lungs so I could still run and it also put a stop to the coughing and sneezing for a while.
The tide was at the low point and the beach was nice and flat, not too many broken shells to hinder my running. I ran from Grange to Semaphore and back, similar to my Saturday run but shorter. I ran back on the road grass and beach. Funny thing is that I felt smooth and easy on the out bound part of the run but on the way back I seemed to have lost that smoothness. I felt heavy and clumsy on my landing. It could have been due to the cold.

Thursday, 26-July. 10km

The return of the wet weather. I managed to squeeze a quick 10km in after work and before the bulk of the rain began to fall which happened shortly after I got back home. As I ran south I could see the black clouds and a semicircular rainbow arc indicating it was raining further on. I told myself that I would turn back if it looked like the rain was going to come down heavily. As it turned out a few spots fell as I got to my turnaround point and this continued until I outran it. The ground was warm under foot, well not warm exactly but not cold, I had plenty of feedback from the feet. I ran the last 2km along the beach and recorded a time of 9:54m for the 2km. It is slightly lighter in the evening now, sunset at 5.30pm and fully dark about 30 minutes later.

Saturday, 28-July. 22km

What a nice morning, I was expecting a cold windy day with rain and got a sunny day with a light breeze and no rain (that came in during the afternoon). The tide was just on its way out but there was plenty of firm sand to run on. The running felt great all the way, even at the end I was just tired without feeling exhausted.
On the way back I ran with another runner and had a good chat about how good it was to have such wonderful places to run. The kilometres zoom by much faster when you are chatting away. It slowed me down a little and even though I picked up my speed in the last 5km it wasn't enough to make up the time I'd lost from running at a more relaxed pace earlier.

Sunday, 29-July. 8.2km

A calm Sunday morning by the lake, the sun is out and I can feel a bit of warmth on the grass, the concrete is much cooler. The rowers are out on the lake with their coaches shouting orders from the path around the edge of the lake. I've pretty much shaken off the cold I had last week, I'm hoping that is the last of my winter illnesses. It is usually in springtime that the danger lurks, that's when the viruses seem to peak. A good run with a little competition along the way. My fast stretch was a bit slower at 6:02m, I wasn't getting good feedback from the cold concrete. Next week into August and a group barefoot run around the lake next week with the others, that will make a nice change.


Sunday, July 22, 2012

First Cough of Winter

Distance 52.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3228.9km] Week 29

Tuesday, 17-July. 11km. 

I didn't run on Monday due to residual soreness in the glutes from a gym workout on Sunday, in other words a sore ass. That, along with a feeling that I was coming down with a cold and the weather was uninspiring. Today though the sky was blue and it felt a little warmer, the cold didn't develop, its just a throaty irritation. I had to hurry tonight as Tuesday is our cinema night, the film was on slightly later at 7.10pm so that gave me a window of opportunity to get out. It was a good run, the soreness had faded and I had some strength in the legs. It was an out and back run on the road with the last 2km on the beach. It got cold as soon as the sun disappeared and I felt frozen running along the beach. I wasn't dressed for the conditions, just a t-shirt and shorts in 10C.

Thursday, 19-July. 11km

Each morning I wake up I my throat feels claggy as if the cold is just waiting to pounce on me and then by mid morning its gone but my voice is a bit gravelly. A damp start to the morning, by afternoon a bit of warmer sun evaporates the water on the roads and paths and I get a good run in. Once again I go from Grange to West Beach and back. The tide was high so no running along the beach. My feet must have acclimatised to the cold now as I don't mind it as much as I did the first year of barefoot running. A few runners say 'Hi" as I see them on my daily run. In the early days I felt really self conscious but now that I have developed the confidence of good running form it doesn't bother me. I took it easy tonight as I felt a bit tired from a Wednesday gym session where I did some hip exercises, I think this had a subtle effect on my running tonight.

Saturday, 21-July. 22km

I collected the morning paper at 7am and noticed it had been a warm night (well, not down to 5C). I wanted to get a long run in today, I missed out last week do to the cold windy weather.
Today when I got to the beach there was no wind, the sea was calm and the tide was out. My feet stayed warm for the entire run. There was low cloud or sea mist drifting in but I had the feeling the sun would burn it off and a bright sunny day would emerge later on. Running up the beach towards Semaphore I could see around 1km before the view disappeared into the mist. On the way back it became thicker and at one point there was a fantastic scene. I was running along almost perfectly flat sand, there were no people around, the mist was quite thick, I could see around 100m in front. The sand just disappeared into the mist, then with the sun shining from behind me it made an illuminated arc in the mist. It was like I was running into an arch of light, it was magical. The mist damped nearly all the sound, I could just hear my breathing and a slight sound of the water. I got back to the Grange jetty, only seeing it when I was 100m away. Once under it and on my way to Henley the mist just lifted and it was a clear sunny day, I looked behind and there it was still, a bank of mysterious mist. I had to push myself for the last few kilometres, the beach was very stony and weedy and when your tired it is hard to negotiate your way around the shells and stones. I did a time of 2h 4m 29s was faster than I ran it last time. I'll be under 2 hours in a month.

Sunday, 22-July. 8.2km

 My head is clogged up today with a cold virus. It's not on my chest so I can go out for a run. It's a beautiful sunny day after a cold night, at 6.30am it was 4.5C pretty chilly, once the sun came up the temperature climbed and by 10am when I was ready to start my run it was 12.7C. Calm conditions made for a nice easy run. My fast stretch was completed in 6:01m over 10s slower than my best. I did a gym session after the run, concentrating on chest and back.


Sunday, July 15, 2012

Cold week

Distance 47.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3176.7km] Week 28

Monday, 9-Jul. 7km

A cloudy but mild day made it pleasant underfoot, no numbness. I took it nice and easy tonight covering a short 7km from the jetty at Grange to the River Torrens and back. The gloomy weather brought the darkness on quickly. The temperature started to drop once the light faded from the sky.

Wednesday, 11-Jul. 11km

Once again rushing out of work to get to the beach before the darkness returns. I have about 30 minutes before sunset but once more it has been a grey day and its quite dark even when only half way around. I run the last 2.5km along the beach in near darkness. I was hoping to do a fast sprint along the sand but the lack of visibility and the uneven stony beach made that impossible so I just took it easy. On the return journey just as I was approaching the river outlet a girl was running in the opposite direction and surprise surprise she was barefoot. I don't think she was just running from the beach as she was dressed in running gear but it looked like she was giving it a go, well done! I think the wave is picking up height.

Thursday, 12-Jul. 10km

What a surprise, the forecast was for showers and cold weather but instead it was the best day of the week so far. The temperature even rose to past 18C in the afternoon. I had intended to go to the gym this evening but you have to grab these opportunities when they are presented. This time when I parked up on the Esplanade there was sunshine and an almost spring like warmth in the air. I ran at an aerobic pace of 132bpm, slowing down each time my heart rate went above 134. I still sweat like crazy, even in these cool winter conditions. What will it be like when we get back to the mid 30C's again. Almost a year ago I was getting ready to head over to the UK for a 'summer' holiday. The reality turned out to be that the weather was better in Australia than in England. I had to wear my Vibrams as the roads and paths were so yucky and I picked up an injury.

Saturday, 14-Jul. 11km

A cold windy day with black clouds racing across the sky dropping rain over different areas of the city. By the beach it was dry though. The temperature was just over 11C and the wind blowing at 32km/h. The tide was high when I got to the beach so I decided that I was not going to struggle along 22km of soft sand and blowing wind, there would be better days. I ran on my usual evening course along the path by the beach. The bricks were cold underfoot and the concrete felt colder again. Only another 6 weeks and we are into September, the start of Spring. I did notice the first of the small winter flowers on the grassy areas, the little yellow buttercup type flower. The daisies will be out next in a few weeks, these are the signs I keep watch for to let me know when the warmer weather will arrive.

Sunday, 15-Jul. 8.2km

A cool morning with strong northerly wind. The run around the lake offered a bit of shelter from the cold wind. The normally placid lake was whipped up with high enough waves to keep most of the boaties of the water today. My feet felt a bit sore yesterday after the run on the cold concrete, the 2km at the end where I ran in the waves made them feel a lot better. I did my faster effort along Sportsmans Drive but didn't push for maximum effort, I wanted more concentration on form. I still felt very fluid and easy and still recorded under 6 minutes. I can really stretch out and still land on the front of my foot. Despite what I've heard that you can't alter your foot landing patterns I know that is rubbish, I've proved it, changed from an awful heel striker to a fast forefoot lander. I would like to spread the message further, each time I see some runner with some horrendous running style. I passed one on Saturday, it looked like some hybrid of speed walking and running. He was heel striking and then pushing over his straight leg to the next landing, his face was contorted in what looked like pain rather than enjoyment, how sad.


Sunday, July 8, 2012

Speeding up

Distance 50.5km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3129.5km] Week 27

Monday, 2-Jul. 9km

A mostly uninspiring grey day outside and a dysfunctional air conditioner at work making the place chilly didn't make me feel much like going out for a run later on. Only the late afternoon sun that came out for the last hour boosted my spirits and got me out onto the beach path. A good run, felt strong and springy on the outbound run then took it at a slower pace on the way back.

Thursday, 5-Jul. 11km

Another great run, like most of them are these days. Gee, I remember the days when I would run with the big heavy shoes and orthotics and how exhausted I would feel when I got back along with all the aches and pains along the way. Now, in comparison it just feels like I'm floating over the ground, the kilometres speed by. This was mainly a road run with the last 2 km run along the beach high tide line. Even in near dark and in soggy sand with lots of stones and crushed up shells I can run 10m for the 2km jetty to jetty. I'm looking forward to a few of the free races later in the year. I'll step up to the 13km run in the Christmas day run to see what time I can do.
One little psychological thing I'm practicing is the following, each time I come to a small hill that I'm running up I should be happy and joyful to have the opportunity to challenge the hill rather than slog up it. There are not many hills out to the west of the city so when I come across any I should be thankful.

Saturday, 7-Jul. 22km

A cold sunny winters day, it got down to 3C overnight, one reason why I start my runs later in the morning during this time of year. During summer I'll set off for my runs at 8am but in the winter 10am is the time I prefer. It raises the temperature by a couple of degrees. It was 12C when I set off. I kept my heart rate in the aerobic zone all the way, reigning it in if it went up to 136 and bringing it back to around 132. I did contemplate adding a few more kilometres to the run but I was getting tired by 19km so just ran the last 3km back up the beach. I'm sure by spring time I can get up to 25-30km. Feet were fine after the run, I should pamper them a bit more seeing as they do so much work.

Sunday, 8-Jul. 8.2km

The lake loop was a good short run after the long run yesterday. Weather was dry but a more cloudy than yesterday, still enough sun to warm up the darker surfaces. The concrete was pretty cold today and it took around 3km for my feet to start to warm up. I did my fast section up the concrete and was amazed that I managed to knock more time off the distance, beating last weeks time. For the 1.28km I recorded a time of 5:47.5m, a 10s improvement over last weeks time. That is 7:17m for the mile (4:31m/km) in bare feet, not to bad seeing as I'm twice the age I was when I could run it in under 6m.


Sunday, July 1, 2012

Long run getting easier

Distance 43km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3079.3km] Week 26

Monday, 25-Jun. 6km

A nice relaxed short run tonight, no pressure. A bit warmer than the chilly weekend, maybe the overnight rain and cloud stopped the temperature from dropping too low.

Wednesday, 27-Jun. 11km

Last day of the good weather before the return of the rain that will be with us until the end of the week. We have 3 minutes of extra daylight since the shortest day, that means that I wont have to rush as much when I escape from my day at work. I have been getting more into the habit of leaving at 4pm rather than 4.30pm, after all why should I put in any extra time when I get zero appreciation for it. Tonight I parked at the Grange hotel as there are roadworks on Grange road and the traffic slows to a crawl. It adds an extra 1km onto my run. I ran the last 2km on the beach to time myself, it was cold and dark but I still managed a respectable 10 minutes on the unpredictable surface. The sand felt very cold underfoot  and I was glad to get off the beach and wash the sand off under the tap by the jetty.

Saturday, 30-Jun. 22km

We had quite a bit of rain on the Friday so I was quite happy to have a rest day. It was a cold start to Saturday morning with some early morning rain. I got out for my run at 10am. My feet felt good this morning, didn't have any numbness from the cold sand, the only time they felt cold was when I ran along the footpath which was wet. On the return journey I was running into a south westerly wind and it was quite chilling. I did my best time on this length of run mainly because I didn't suffer from the fatigue at the end. Maybe my running has become more efficient. My time for the run was 2:03:41.
Tomorrow is a relaxed run with the small group of barefoot runners on our what I am hoping will become a regular first Sunday in the month get together.

Sunday, 1-Jul. 4km

A rainy day, I was woken by the sound of rain at 7am and hoped it would all be out of the way by 9am but it stayed showery for most of the day. The monthly meeting of the barefoot group was in the riverside suburb of College Park. I was first to arrive, it rained as I was driving over but stopped as I waited for the others to arrive. I wondered at first whether they might have abandoned the idea but no, David and Jenny turned up 5 minutes before the appointed start time. We set off along the river pathways that wove along the winding river, quite undulating. It was a relaxed easy pace so I could concentrate on perfect foot placement. The ground was cold but not excessively. It was a tranquil place with birds in the trees and the sounds of animals in the nearby zoo, there were a few other runners that had a double take as we ran silently past. The sun shone for the duration of the run then, when we finished and retired to the cafe for a coffee the rain returned. The next meeting will be on the first Sunday in August and will be a lap of the lake at West Lakes. It makes it interesting to run in different areas.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Shortest day gone!

Distance 40.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3036.3km] Week 25

Monday, 18-Jun. 10km

A cool wet day at the start that cleared to sunny by the end. Despite the rain the temperature was a bit above average and the bit of sun at the end made it better. The sun wasn't enough to dry the ground and as I ran along the path following the beach I had some good fun splashing through the puddles. The sun started to set as I hit the half way point and after another few kilometres darkness began to creep up on me. I decided to take to the beach for the last 2km for a bit of speed that I can't get on the footpath in the dark. There was a runner in front of me who was running with his dog, I couldn't catch him though, even going at a faster pace. The challenge is good though. More wet weather is on the way by Wednesday.

Saturday, 23-Jun. 22km

A very chilly start, just 8C when I got to the beach today. A slate grey sky with rain threatening and a cold headwind to contend with. I brought my Vibram Sprints with me today as I was a little tired of freezing feet. The overnight temperature had got down to 5C and the sand wouldn't have been much warmer now. As I ran north the wind picked up from 15km/h to 25km/hr and it cut right through me. It took me around 7km to warm up. I must admit, I'm not keen running in the Vibrams, I could feel a bit of ankle soreness, they must alter the way I land. At around the 10km mark I took them off and carried them for the rest of the run. Within a few kilometres the ankle soreness stopped, umm. Running now with a tailwind was better but the cold had started to get to me and I had to run the last 3km back into a headwind. I was so glad to climb into the shelter of my car in the end, I just sat there for 10 minutes feeling a bit of warmth from the pale sun shining through the windscreen.
It has certainly been a wet week, showers and heavy rain for 3 days. One positive is that the evenings will now slowly get lighter, the shortest day passed on the 21st, now minute by minute the longer and hopefully warmer days will return. I don't like winter, I like heat.

Sunday, 24-Jun. 8.2km

A much milder night and some sunshine in the morning made today far more tolerable for a run. Your spirits are lifted seeing the sun and feeling a little warmth on the bottom of my feet. The concrete was still fairly cold but running along the lake I was sheltered from the winds that would be blowing along the beach. Even in this cool weather I still sweat like crazy by the halfway point, how much more can I sweat when the hot weather returns. I didn't see many runners on my lap around the lake this time. Even the model boat enthusiasts were absent, the water must have been too choppy. I did my 1.28km sprint and amazed myself at knocking about 8s of my time, it took me 5:58.5m or 4:46.8m/km. After the run I headed down to the gym and did a light workout, just arms, one back exercise and plenty of stretching.


Sunday, June 17, 2012

3000 Barefoot Kilometres

Distance 53.5km [total: minimalist 275.6km: Barefoot 3006.1km] Week 24

Monday, 11-Jun. 12.3km 

A day off work today, the public holiday for the Queens birthday, not the official day of her birth which I think is earlier in the year. It was moved to June as there were quite a few public holidays grouped around April time. A long run would be good today so I set off from Grange to Glenelg, a distance of around 15.5km. I was trying to keep a relaxed pace but maybe in hindsight I should have gone faster as on the way back I ran out of energy. I just got back to the river crossing point and then I just felt flat, the will power gave out and I couldn't get the motor started again. I ended up walking the last 3.5km back along the beach. I think I may have worn myself out with the weekend running and gym session where I did some leg extensions.

Wednesday, 13-Jun. 11km

A nice warm day, at least it was forecast to be warmer than the rest of the days this week so, just in case the rain does come in tomorrow I can have a rest for a few days. I parked at Grange car park tonight and ran my usual run to the Caravan park at West Beach. The sun had set by the time I got there and darkness would be here in about 20 minutes. I ran back and detoured onto the beach just before Henley jetty to see if I could run a good time between jetties. My time was not that good, mainly because I was running in the dark and couldn't see the ground all that well. I ran it in 10:20. It felt fast but that is a trick of the darkness.

Saturday, 16-Jun. 22km

We got some early morning sun that I was hoping would make the ground a bit warmer after a cold night. It was around 10C by the time I got to the beach. The sand hadn't warmed up much and felt much colder and soon my feet were numb. It too around 5km before I started to get a bit of feeling in the bottom of my feet. How sweet the spring time will be when I feel warm sand under foot once again. A slowish time to reach Semaphore, a better time on the way back once my feet had some sensory feedback to give. I chased down a few runners on the way back to add some interest. I creep up on them in stealth mode, I think they get a bit demoralised when they see a guy passing them, and he has no shoes. Still felt a bit tired on the last few kilometres. These are the kilometres that I'm hoping will improve my form, when fatigued the body makes the running stride better and more efficient.

Sunday, 17-Jun. 8.2km

With today's run I have reached the milestone of 3000 kilometres of barefoot running. I would have never thought just over 2.5 years ago I would have managed that, after years of injuries running in shoes I am now injury free and enjoying running more than I have in years.
Today I did my lake loop. Some early morning sunshine brought the runners out along the lake path. I tagged along with another runner while I was warming up but left him behind after a kilometre. I'll give him his due he managed to keep up so that by the time I reached West Lakes Boulevard he was about 30m behind, after that he disappeared off in some other direction. The sunny weather was beginning to be replaced by rain bearing clouds. I did a sprint along Sportsmans Drive recording 6:09 for the 1.28km. After my cool down I headed off to the gym for a short weight session. I did some chest, situps and weighted lunges. By the time I got out the rain had started, it stayed damp for the rest of the day.


Sunday, June 10, 2012

Some good distances

Distance 56km [total: minimalist 275.6km: Barefoot 2952.6km] Week 23

Tuesday, 5-Jun. 10km

It's getting chilly now. Less than 3 weeks before we hit the shortest day and my spirits will lift as I know that it won't get any dark any earlier. At the moment it is around 5:10pm for sunset. When I used to live in England it would be getting dark an hour earlier than that. I doubt I would have been running barefoot in the winter there, even if it was as mild as here.
I did a high heart rate run, keeping it up in the high 130's to low 140's. The run was mostly on the road except for the last 1.5km where I switched to the beach so I could run fast. It was near dark but just enough light to see the stones on the beach whereas on the path I would have to run slower due to visibility.

Wednesday, 6-Jun. 8km

A shorter easier run today. I tried to keep at a more steady speed tonight. I'm still finding the pavement temperature fine to run on, I still have feeling on contact, it is not cold enough to numb the senses.
I've almost finished reading Matt Fitzgerald's book Run which I'm finding much more readable now. I went through a period when I was making very slow progress with it but my interest has picked up when he describes how to improve your running grace. Basically you have to run further, faster and lighter. It sounds like stating the obvious but the more you run the better your running becomes. I may have also got an answer to how I got injured last year, he mentions it is usually a change in the type of training, something different from the usual repartition. As the injury developed just after I came back from running in the UK I had been doing much more hill running, that was the trigger, then stretching the injured area at the gym then caused it to worsen until breakdown occurred.

Thursday, 7-Jun. 7.8km 

A run around the lake tonight before sunset. While concrete is nice to run on in the summer because it is cool, in the winter it doesn't absorb much heat from the sun and so it quite cold underfoot. It is always nice to find small stretches of darker coloured surface and feel the slight warmth get soaked up by my feet. I only had a T-shirt on tonight and it was pretty chilly by the time I got back. I ran with a fellow runner tonight but didn't manage to catch up once I took a 1.5km detour.

Saturday, 9-Jun. 22km

Once more I managed to do a half marathon distance and I knocked a minute off my time from last week. It is always a little hard to compare just by time alone as I take quite a few detours while running along the beach. The detours are around large patches of weed washed ashore at high tides, there are also trapped water pools draining out into the sea which I skirt around and also areas of soft sand near the river outlet. It was quite cold overnight, getting down to 3C, I waited until 10am before setting out on my run, I did consider the Vibrams but when I got to the beach I found the temperature quite tolerable. This time I didn't have to do any extra running after a night out at the pub.

Sunday, 10-Jun. 8.2km

To finish the week off, another trip around the lake running on the cold concrete, colder than on Thursday as the sun had only been on it for a few hours. I must be a regular sight running around the lake now, I see plenty of regulars on their morning walks around the lake. I always make an effort to say good morning and smile rather than grimace, like the average runner carries on their face. No wonder people thing that running is a torturous activity, it's not sold very well.


Sunday, June 3, 2012

First 22km run in 25 years

Distance 49.8km [total: minimalist 275.6km: Barefoot 2896.6km] Week 22

Wednesday, 30-May. 10km

A busy week kept me away from the until I managed to squeeze a run in this evening. Leaving work at 4pm and getting plenty of green lights on the way home meant I got to the beach at around 4.40pm, just over 30 minutes before sunset. It had been a warm late autumn day, 19C, they sky was clear and sunny always an inspiration to get out for a run. I ran along the road for most of the run and ran the last 3km along the beach where I did some interval sessions. I did 2 minutes slow and 2 minutes fast and managed to push my heart rate up to 150BPM. The sand was a little soft and well trodden to get any real speed up so I concentrated on leg speed. I need to do more of these type of workout to get my base speed up. I had a bit of a race with a runner on the outbound leg, he beat me but didn't gain much ground once he overtook, I think I would have wore him down over a longer distance.

Thursday, 31-May. 7km

A bit of shortened run as I was a bit later getting out today and so ran out of daylight. I still worked hard over the distance and was soaked in sweat by the time I got back to the car. My feet must be much tougher than they were a year ago as I don't seem to get any marks on them at all from running on the roads. I could feel a slight stiffness from the speed training yesterday but hardly noticeable. We have rain forecast from tomorrow through the weekend.

Saturday, 2nd-Jun. 22km + 6km

Well, I did it! for the first time in well over 20 years I ran over a half marathon distance and despite feeling a little tired after I was fine by the afternoon. The time was nothing spectacular at 2:07 but that included climbing over banks of sea weed and dodging around obstacles on the beach. I started to feel the chill breeze that picked up on the way back and was glad to get into the warmth of the car.
Later that day I had arranged to go and have some drinks with some ex work colleagues. I made it clear that I would be getting an early bus back and I wanted to be home before 10pm, but, as usual that never happened. After visiting 4 pubs and drinking 5-6 pints of beer I find that the time is 11.30pm, I've missed the last buses. I caught a taxi part way home, getting out where my friends got out. I don't think I had enough money for the full journey so I was going to have to run. I had 6km to get home, a heavy coat, jeans and feeling a bit the worst for wear due to the beer. But my feet didn't let me down and my barefoot style helped. I had my thin Vivo Barefoot shoes on and even though I couldn't stretch out due to wearing jeans I still managed a fast leg turnover. I'm not sure how long it took me to get home, it must have been over 30 minutes. My T-shirt was soaked in sweat when I got back, I had a quick shower then fell into bed.

Sunday, 3-Jun. 4.8km

The second meeting of the small barefoot running group, David and Jenny turned up at the meeting place at Semaphore. We ran a small part of my Saturday route which had a combination of surfaces such as bitumen, concrete, grass and sand. It was nice to take it easy and chat. I'd managed to shake off my tight head from too much alcohol the night before and reconnecting with the ground seemed to recharge me. I'll leave it up to David to pick the next running route for the first Sunday in July.