After the race

So I learned a lesson about nutrition (I assume).  While I didn’t do the typical pig-out on Thanksgiving, I did have more crap food than I usually do, and it showed in my first post race run yesterday.  I got kind of dizzy and light-headed and had to cut the run short.  No soreness or aches and pains though, so that’s a plus.  I ate much better yesterday and felt great on my run today.  This was the week with my highest total miles ever.

My parents have now come and gone.  I wish my boys would get to spend more time with them, but they have a great time with them while they are here.  Since they moved to Florida permanently a couple of years ago, we’ve only seen them a couple times a year.  We’ll see them again around Christmas, so we do have that to look forward to.

My first 10K

Today I reached goal #2 for the year:  to run a 10K within 5 months of starting to run again.  I actually finished way ahead of when I thought I’d be ready, and I’m very glad I did.

I ran the Cincinnati Thanksgiving Day Race, the US’s second oldest organized race (after the Boston Marathon).  This year was the 100th running of the race so that added a little more “cool” to the proceedings.  Yesterday, my wife and I stopped at Bob Roncker’s Running Spot to pick up my bib and chip and the place was swamped.  That should have been an indication of what was to come.  I have to admit, I felt like a “real” runner participating in a race that was chip timed.

My parents are in town for Thanksgiving, so I felt a bit guilty for taking time out of the morning to go run the race, but I was really motivated to do it, so I did.  Unfortunately, I had to go do it alone as my wife, parents, and my boys stayed at home.  In then end, it’s a good thing they didn’t go because it was in the 30’s out there this morning.  Standing around waiting for the race to start was the hardest and coldest part.

Here’s an early morning shot of me, just before I left for the race.  Note the lack of daylight!.

Pre-race

17,000 runners and walkers showed up to do the race.  I was blown away.  I had no idea it would be this big, and only having run a couple of local 5Ks prior to this, and I had no idea what to expect.  The good news is that all those bodies help to block the bitter wind while we waited for the starting gun.  Once it did start, it took me about ten minutes to make it to the starting line, another new experience for me.

I felt great as the run got underway.  I spent the whole course reminding myself to run nice and easy and it made a world of difference.  For the first two miles or so, it felt like I spent a good deal of time dodging the walkers on the course, so when I look back at my pace data, I look a bit schizophrenic at the beginning.  I feel like the race organizers could do a better job of having the walkers on one side of the course and the runners on the other, but maybe this is just par for the course for a race this big.

I had made such a quick decision to do the race that I had not yet even completed a six mile run, so I was nervous about just completing it, but as it turned out, I had no problems.  In fact, I had the satisfaction of crossing the finish line and knowing I could have gone further.  A couple of the bridges had some relatively steep hills, but no too bad.  My time for my first 10K was 1:04:24.

When I got home, my family had made a sign for me to break through.  “You have one one more tape to break today” was what my wife told me as I was driving home.  Here’s a picture.

A second finish line

This gives me so much motivation to keep going.  I also know that I’m going to sign up for the Flying Pig and run the half next spring.

A great day.

Pre-race jitters

OK, I admit it, I’m nervous about tomorrow.  I have no real reason to be. Success is defined as simply finishing, but I am nervous that I’ve bitten off more than I can chew.

My wife decided the best way to support me is take me, the boys and my parents (who got here today) to an Italian place for dinner so I can carbo load!  I’m not sure a 10K requires loading up on carbs, but I love the support.  I got an easy 3 miler in yesterday and felt strong, so I’m as ready as I’ll ever be.

Also, happy anniversary to my mom and dad.  44 years together!

Doing the Thanksgiving Day Race 10K

I’m doing the Thanksgiving Day Race on Thursday.  I did about 4.5 miles yesterday and about 5.5 today, so I feel I’m ready.  I’ll probably rest tomorrow, do a few easy miles on Tuesday, then run the race Thursday.  I’m so new at this, I have no idea whether that’s the right approach, but it seems sensible, so it’s what I going to do.

My younger son went with me yesterday (on his bike) and he was so proud to have been with me on my longest run to date.  Then his brother, who was just chomping at the bit to finally get out of the house again, came with me today, and he got to say that now he got to go on Dad’s longest run.

It’s nice to get a reminder of just how little it really takes to make them happy.  It reminds me of when they were toddlers and they’d get a birthday gift in the mail from one of my sisters.  The gift itself would sit untouched but the box it was shipped in would become their favorite plaything for the next couple months.

Pushing for the 10K

Since we were supposed to be on a real vacation, I decided to take the days off from work anyway, and it’s been great.  The older boy is nearly back to normal which is great.  His brother seems to be unscathed by our H1N1 skirmish. In the meantime I’ve had a great time just hanging out with the family.

Having the extra time has me thinking much more seriously about trying to run the 10K next week.  I’m going to push today and tomorrow to see if I can get a long run in to prove to myself I can do it.

Crazy warm weather around here for late November.  We’re almost done getting the trip rescheduled and it looking like February.  Something tells me we’ll be ready for some warm weather then.

Little man’s a little better

He’s doing a bit better today.  The doctor gave us anti-nausea medication for him, and that has helped.  The fever has subsided a bit as well.  He now has just the tiniest little bit of color back in his face, and just this evening he started arguing with his brother again, so we’re cleary heading in the right direction.  Not out of the woods yet, but at least not heading downhill.  His younger brother has a very low grade fever, but no other symptoms so we continue to keep our fingers crossed.

During a small lull in the storm, my wife kicked me out of the house and told me to run.  I’m not completely certain, but I get the impression I don’t do well when there’s not much to do.  Anyway, I managed to get almost 4 miles in and felt good.

H1N1 has invaded our household

So about 2:00 AM this morning, my wife and I were woken up by my older boy’s voice calling out, “Mom and Dad!”  I got into his room just in time to catch most of the vomit before it went on the floor.  Yep, there I stood, a grown man, catching vomit in my bare hands.  That, ladies and gentlemen, is the love of a father.

Poor guy kept throwing up throughout the night until, of course, it simply turned to dry heaves.  At one point, in the midst of all of this, he looked over at me and in the most heart-wrenching, sincere voice a 9-year old can muster, said, “This is the worst day of my life.”  Amen, my little man.  Amen.

I’m not sure which was worse for him, the relentless nausea or the guilt he felt knowing this would postpone our trip.  There’s no amount of “buddy, there’s no way you can control this” and “it’s not your fault” that’s going to convince him otherwise, though.

The nausea never let up for him during the day today, so my wife took him to the pediatrician and sure enough, he tested positive for Influenza A.  Hopefully the fever will let up tomorrow.

So we’re going to reschedule the trip for some point in the future.  In the meantime, we planning on soaking his little brother in a giant vat of Purell.

Running better than ever

Maybe it the anticipation of our trip, but I feel like I’m running better than I ever have.  Got in a couple of miles as a recovery run after the race on Sunday but I really felt like I could have easily kept going.  Really had to force myself to stop.  That’s a good feeling.

Also, I found a great running social network site called DailyMile.  I’ll have to report back in the future how I’ve liked it.  Here’s my profile.

Excited about a trip to the Bahamas

It seems funny to me now how I think of everything through the lens of running.  As I said in my previous blog post, I’m seriously considering trying to run the Thanksgiving Day 10K here in Cincinnati.  Thing is, I’m taking my family on a vacation to the Bahamas in a few days and I’m worried about how I’ll get my miles in.  Hah!  I’m going to (one form of) paradise and I’m worried about running.

Proof of my insanity.  A partial shot of my to-do list prior to the trip.

To-do list

I can’t wait!  We’ve never taken the boys on a real beach vacation so they’re chomping at the bit to get there too.

A second 5K in a week

As long as I’m doing these things, I might as well keep going.

Today, my wife and I ran the St. Ursaline Run for the Lions 5K.  Our niece, Molly, attends St. Ursaline, so we know the proceeds are going to a good cause.  Her brother Danny also ran with us.  When in high school at Moeller (he’s now at UC), he was a very accomplished cross country runner, so this was a breeze to him.

My goal was to better my time from last week (a 30:22), and I did that.  I ran a 29:34, so I did improve, but not as much as I had hoped.

This was my first race with the Garmin and I used the pace tool to help me keep below the bar I set, which was a 10:00 minute/mile average.  Here’s the data.

This is probably biting off more than I can chew, but I’ve felt so good in these last two races, I’m considering trying the Thanksgiving Day 10K.  We’ll see how I feel next week.