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.