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Halfway to my goal of running a 5K daily for one year

https://www.strava.com/activities/461468039/embed/1f8e19ece72d52e56a9f19e30c46875ea97192db

My day started like a lot of my days with a lake swim at Lucky’s Lake.

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A bit chilly out this morning.

I love this sign!

I love this sign!

After my two lake crossing this morning, I reached a running milestone. Day 183, which means I’m officially half way to my goal of running a 5K a day for one year. 183/365=50%.

https://www.strava.com/activities/461465431/embed/ff4a78417696eb6b3a3d6feaf556f44ba755396c

I’m amazed that I’ve made it this far considering the nagging injuries I’ve incurred.  The journey has had many twist and turns that’s for sure.  Like right now I’m currently struggling with some nagging right glute and hamstring issues.  These issues have really slowed down my running.  I dare not push the pace, for fear of being derailed for a longer period of time.  I have to somehow keep running while at the same time allowing my body to get some rest and heal.

You’ve heard of the term “dog days of the summer”?  That’s what my quest currently feels like.  Each day it seems to be a grind to complete my 5k run.  A part of me longs to do other activities that I have put aside for fear of injuring myself.  Activities such as basketball, weightlifting and cycling have not been part of my routine for awhile now.  This has been the longest time I haven’t cycled in three years time.

I do plan on adding some light weightlifting to beef up my physique and make my body more resistant to injuries going forward.  The problem is that I can’t push too hard as building muscle requires rest and recovery.  Is it possible to build muscle on minimal rest and recovery?  We shall find out, as I’m going to take a before and after picture to track my weightlifting journey.

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I wanted to capture the halfway point of my 5K/Day journey with a nice photo

I love bamboo

I love bamboo

I’ve really become dependent on running with music.  I’m finding motivation by running with a different playlist everyday.  Before I started this running quest, I loathed running with music and just enjoyed the sound of my breath and feet hitting the pavement.  I would like to get back to running without music, but for now the music is a good motivator for me to continue the streak.  Also running in different locations that I’ve never run before adds motivation and “childlike” intrigue.

Instead of my normal what have I learned list, I’m going to talk about what has been the easiest part of my journey and what has been the hardest.

The easiest part surprisingly has been the actual running itself.  I’ve got the 5K run down to such a routine, it’s just a matter of doing it.

The hardest part has been documenting my journey.  It seems that I’m having trouble keeping up with recording my runs, how I’m feeling that day, challenges, blogging etc.  A close second would be taking the time to address my injuries properly.  Getting more massages, acupuncture visits, roller therapy to really address my injuries.

I’m looking forward to learning more about myself on the second half of this journey to a year’s worth of daily 5Ks.

 

 

 

 

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Enter the next pain to deal with glute strain? #164 consecutive 5K

https://www.strava.com/activities/450431711/embed/675cd7e681f3e3335638135baf00f8a3cf130365

Ooh ouch ooh ouch could be a song today as I ran my 164th 5K.  I have officially developed some sort of glute injury that hurts with every step of my run.  How long will the pain last?  How long will it take to heal?  Will this last the remaining 201 days of my year of consecutive 5Ks?  I’m mentally prepared to endure the pain if that is the case.  I can barely sit at my desk without the sharp pain starting from my right glute and all the way down my hamstring.  I’ll address it with some acupuncture and massage therapy and see how it goes.


I did manage to work in a “dad’s basketball camp workout” with my son before my run.  It was a hectic day and I’m really feeling tired towards the end of my 5th night of 3rd shift work. #can’twaittosleepatnight

 

 
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Posted by on December 14, 2015 in Daily Training Log

 

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Run thought day 161st 5K


https://www.strava.com/activities/448403033

Oftentimes when I run, I have creative and thought provoking ideas.

My thought while running today’s was……..What if you’ve never discovered your greatest talent? Try something new and out of your circle of comfort.

What if you are missing out on your greatest challenge because you haven’t tried anything new since high school?

Get out and discover all your gifts!

As a side note, I’ve developed a slight glute issue from running too fast.  Sigh, I wonder how long it will take to heal?  Better make another appointment to the Acupuncturist.

 

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Day #150 of consecutive 5K run (a late post)

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I love running paths and running someplace new.

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A unique view, doing my post run stretches on my back.

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A beautiful duck, who is quite comfy around people. It had zero fear of me, even running by him.

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My first run at Gaston Edwards Park

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Shameless selfie

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My app that keeps track of all my runs

 

Has it really been 3 months since I’ve blogged?  You’ve got to be freaking kidding me!  You know what has distracted me is posting quite a bit?  The answer is posting on Facebook/Instagram and not porting my activities over to this blog.  To be totally honest, I don’t have time to post to all three everyday.

I have to make some decisions about what is the best way to communicate with the largest audience.  Facebook seems to be the easiest to use via my cell phone.  Posting to this blog seems to require me sitting down at my laptop.  Whereas, I can post to Facebook while I’m pretty much anywhere with a few minutes to spare.  Look me up on Facebook for the latest on my activities.  I will be revamping this blog soon, so more to come.

What have I been up to?  I guess the best way to start is the latest adventure and work my way backwards.  As you can tell from the title, I’m still pursuing my quest for a complete year of running at least a 5K a day.  I’ve just completed day #150 https://www.strava.com/activities/442060722/embed/c43d5137463c147c8fd07f5f398f5a148c6e2918  As a matter of fact, you can add me as a friend on Strava to see all of my 5K runs and times.

So what have I learned so far in regards to running everyday for 150 days straight?

  1. Forces you to spend some time on you everyday
  2. anything you work on everyday will improve
  3. after reaching a certain point, momentum begins to assist you
  4. You can still perform with injuries, I’ve suffered a sprained ankle, shoulder, muscle spasms that cut off my breathing, hip flexors, knee soreness and of course ye ole hammy.
  5. I choose very carefully the things I do as to not injure myself or put myself at risk of not completing my 5K
  6. My mind is now asking the question, “where else can employ this consistency in my life”
  7. Never put yourself last, or your goals will be last too
  8. you can’t outrun a poor diet.  No matter how many miles I run, it can not compensate for my poor food choices.  I shudder to think of how much better I’d look with a cleaner diet.  God please give me more strength.  LOL
  9. My goals have to be high to motivate me to achieve them
  10. Sometimes you just need a little music to get you through
  11. Equipment is critical
  12. Stretching and warming up are keys to avoiding injuries
  13. My body can heal and still continue to keep going
  14. Whenever you need a little motivation, just run somewhere new.  The freshness of the new sights and sounds will keep you engaged and entertained

That is the good news, my running continues to get stronger and stronger.  The bad news is my swimming and biking have been taking a back seat to keep this streak alive.  On days where I have only enough time to swim, bike or run, I have to choose running.

In addition, I’ve started coaching my son’s basketball team.  Coaching has taken up any remaining time I might have left.  I’ve been studying plays, drills and how to get the best out of 4th and 5th grade kids.  It’s not as easy as I would have thought.  It is a rewarding experience as the kids keep asking me to coach the next league when it starts.  Basketball has changed quite a bit since I played back in the 80’s.  LOL

 

 

 

 

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Day 40 of 365 5Ks and a 2 mile swim

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https://connect.garmin.com/activity/embed/863322372

What a way to start the day! Nature is truly amazing. Did a 2 mile swim, followed by my 40th consecutive 5K run.  My first crossing was a little rough as my goggles fogged up making it really difficult to sight.  I’m also only three crossings away from reaching my 300th crossing at Lucky’s Lake!  There is no badge or award for 300 crossings, but I think I will celebrate in my own way!

https://connect.garmin.com/activity/embed/863192465

My goal is to run 365 straight 5K runs.  Over the past 40 days, I’ve suffered through hip flexor pain, muscle soreness, hamstring tweak, back spasms, and rolled ankle.  The rolled ankle was from playing my kids one on one basketball after training, not a good idea.

All in all I feel really good when I run.  I realize that it’s going to be key to monitor my effort level as to not sprain or over do it on any particular day.

My new Altra shoes have been a big help to keep me running strong. When you start to get some nagging injuries, sometimes it’s good to look at the wear and tear on your shoes.

 

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Huntington Disease Olympic Triathlon

A great race for a great cause

A great race for a great cause

Today was a day with mixed emotions.  I accomplished my main objective of supporting my good friend Sincy on his journey for Ironman glory.  At the same time, I did not perform as well as I hoped and was awarded my first time penalty ever (more on this atrocity later).  Our race day started at 4 am as we wanted to get to the park right as it opened to get a good spot.  Well people must have been camping out, because by 5:10 am the park was packed with triathletes and we had to walk a good distance by the time we found parking.

In spite of a ton of athletes already ahead of us, we were still able to secure a good spot for our bikes.  Here is a tip, if you can’t be at the beginning of the bike rack, take the end instead of somewhere in the middle.  Reasoning is that coming out of the water you’re not clear of thought and it will be easier to remember and find your bike at the very end of the rack.  Also you can spread out your items more as you have all that extra space on the end.  We used the extra space to bring in an emptied out hotel trash can filled with Ice to keep our water bottles cold.  We calculated that it could be almost 3 hours before we would be drinking it and it would most certainly be nice and warm in the Miami heat.  We opted not to try to freeze the bottles as there is always that risk of it not thawing out enough to drink.

Now of course they have water along the course.  However, we both had our “special drinks” pre-made just for us.  Sincy had a special blend of electrolytes, protein, salt etc that he ordered online at http://www.infinitnutrition.us/ engineered specifically for his sweat rate, water loss etc.  I opted for a more low budget caveman tonic of lemon juice and maple syrup. lol  Another added bonus of bringing your own bottles, is you can skip the refuel areas during the ride saving precious time.

Sincy (left) and I race morning

I don’t know what it is about swimming and races that makes everyone have to go to the potty so much?  I went twice at the hotel and still had to go an additional 3 times once I saw the lake.  I feel blessed now at 50 years old to have found an activity that still gives me butterflies.  We picked up our timing chips and proceeded to take in all the race day activities.  Chatting with the other athletes is one of my favorite things to do as it takes my mind off being nervous.  I got a good stretch  in and a warm-up swim.  Another tip, anytime you can get a warm-up swim in do it!  The warm-up swim will get rid of all the nervous energy and allow you to have a better swim start.

Swim start

Swim start

Time has a way of flying by on race morning and today was no exception.  Before we knew it two hours had passed and they were announcing our heat of 50-54 year age-groupers.  I reminded Sincy to make sure he set his GPS watch on.  Setting up your watch is a key component in racing as it lets you know things like how many miles you have left in each discipline, heart rate, cadence and a host of data points for later analysis. Well we eased in the water and off went the gun.  I went to press the start button on my watch and it was completely off!  So much like the mother hen in me worrying about others and forgetting about myself.  I did not want to do this race with out the “coach on my wrist”, so I stood there for what seemed forever before my watch was on and had a GPS signal.

Now instead of swimming with the pack and being able to draft off faster swimmers, I was dead last in the back.  I underestimated the impact of being dead last had on my psyche.  I could not find my swimming rhythm and struggled through the swim portion of the race.  If I ever forget to turn my watch on again, I think I’ll just race on feel and not waste precious seconds waiting on a piece of technology.

While muddling in the back of the pack I looked over at one of the kayak support persons and there was Sincy hanging on for dear life (or so I thought).  For those who don’t know my friend Sincy; he does not enjoy open water swimming and has certain phobias when it comes to lakes and oceans.  I motioned for the kayaker to have Sincy look my way.  I just wanted to assure him he could do this and I was here with him.  He motioned that he was ok and to just continue on.  I would later learn that he started off too fast and just needed to get his heart rate down.

The water was so clear you could see the bottom and in some spots it looked like you could just stand up.  I thought if I had this thought of being able to stand up, certainly Sincy would be thinking of taking a standing break if he could.  Sincy and I later had a laugh because he did think about it for a brief second, but opted against it because you couldn’t really gauge if you could stand up or not.  One thing about triathlons is there is always beautiful nature scenes/animals to take in and enjoy.  The swim was full of natures beauty.  Interesting rock formations, beautiful fish and a stunning sunrise.  I thoroughly enjoyed the swim, even though I was off my swim game.

The exit portion of the swim was very rough.  Think of walking on sharp rocks barefoot and covered in deep moss.  I tried to swim as far as I could because I knew from the warm-up swim how harsh the exit was.  After getting out of the lake it was on to the first transition area known as T1 where you’re rejoined with your bike.

My bike setup all nice and pretty.

My bike setup all nice and pretty. Notice ice bucket of water bottles?

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Bikes, bikes and more bikes

Once I’m on my bike, I’m really in my element.  I love riding bikes and needless to say, the bike segment of triathlon is my favorite.  There are strict rules that state you must have your helmet strapped on whenever you are in physical contact with your bike.  Failure to remember this rule results in automatic disqualification.  Important rules like this are covered during the pre-race seminars and I always try to attend them before the race.

pre-race seminar

pre-race seminar

So I put my shirt on first, strapped my helmet on, grabbed my water bottles out of the makeshift ice bucket and run out of transition.  To by delight and surprise, Sincy was right behind me and was relieved to be out of the lake.  Due to a very rough exit out of the T1 transition area, my plan was to run barefoot through the sand and gravel and then towel off the sand and grit before putting  my feet in my bike shoes and having some pebble annoying me for the next hour or so.  After wiping my feet, I gave my towel to a volunteer and began my bike journey.  Unbeknownst to me at the time, it is illegal to hand anything that is not an official part of the race to anyone.  This little seemingly innocent act of handing someone my towel would cost me a two-minute penalty (see race results at the bottom).

Taking off on my bike was my little slice of heaven.  That’s right, just me and my bike and the open road.  Life can get overly complicated, but it’s the simple things in life that I enjoy these days.  I could break this next part of the race to a simple sentence.  A boy on his bike.  I did see the most beautiful double rainbow at the start of the ride.

Inspired by the rainbow

Inspired by the rainbow

I zoomed by many a cyclist and settled into a nice rhythm.  While breezing along I also saw a flock of peacocks just roaming the landscape.  I saw Sincy once on the bike route at a turn around point, but he was quite a bit behind me.  Sincy smiled and looked in good spirits knowing the worst part of the race was behind him.  I thought to myself “he’s got a good chance of catching me because I don’t know how my hip flexors are going to respond during the run.”

As I was nearing the end of my ride I approached a ginormous dog in the middle of the road.  Now I grew up with dogs chasing me all the time on bikes, but I did not want to risk an injury tying to outrun this K9.  So I slowed down as I sized him up as to whether he would start after me or not.  Luckily, he was more consumed with his new-found freedom than chasing a boy on his bike.  The bike course was unusually flat even for Florida. It was the first time I’ve ever race without encountering a single hill!  There were a few small inclines and it was quite windy in some areas but nothing too taxing.   On the bike you are always trying to monitor output effort and saving your legs for the run.  Also, it’s important to nourish and hydrate while on the bike.  Before I knew it, the bike portion was sadly coming to a close.

When I dismount my bike, I normally leave my shoes clicked in and just run barefoot to save time.  Upon further review, I should have kept my shoes on as I had no protection from gravel, rocks, tree roots, and sand to rack my bike.  After racking my bike, it was time to put my running shoes on, my race belt, and my sun visor.  This transition from bike to run is known as T2 in the triathlon world and counts towards your total race time.

The run portion of this race was my biggest concern.  I have not been able to put any pressure on my right leg due to my hip flexor being inflamed, strained etc.  I was ready to give it the old Boy Scout effort though and off I went for the two loop 6 mile course.  The run was a winding loop that takes you around the lake we swam in earlier in the day.  I particularly liked the jagged course with nature on both sides.  I saw mangoes on the ground from the mangoes trees and there was nice landscaping too.  Going around the loop the first time I saw a jack rabbit running directly in front of me.  Oh where is a camera when you need it?  He was the cutest little thing, that allowed me to take my mind off the excruciating pain I now was in due to my hip flexor screaming at me.  Also helping with the pain, were the many cheers to continue on from the race volunteers.  Many of the volunteers have family members suffering with this terrible disease known as Huntington.

I loved this course

I loved this course

I saw my friend Sincy coming at the first loop around turn and knew it would only be a matter of time before he would catch me.  As much as I love to bike, Sincy loves to run.  Also my run speed was getting progressively slower with each passing mile.  There were water stations every mile or so, and I stopped to drink and give my hip flexor pain some reprieve.  I did make it half way through the second loop before Sincy caught up to me and passed me for good.  I was so proud of him to conquer his fear of the water and have a great race day as he fine tunes his training en-route to Ironman Chattanooga.

The final mile or so of the run was a real gut check for me as my body was screaming to just walk.  I have learned not to listen to that voice, and I tuned out the pain and just concentrated on the feeling I would have at the end of the race if I just kept running versus the feeling I would have walking to the finish line.  There is nothing quite like the feeling you get at the end of a triathlon race.

race results

https://connect.garmin.com/activity/embed/845265217

cfl tri club with Sincy. See if you can spot him? LOL

https://cfltriclub.wordpress.com/

This was also the championship race for the Central Florida Triathlon team of which Sincy is a member.

 

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Swimming the “dynamic duo” lakes today

Kayakers providing safety for the swim

Kayakers providing safety for the swim

Many nice people showed up to partake in the festivities

Many nice people showed up to partake in the festivities

Up high to enjoy the view

Up high to enjoy the view

Awesome pancakes that would put IHOP out of business!

Awesome pancakes that would put IHOP out of business!

 

https://connect.garmin.com/activity/embed/796302646

https://connect.garmin.com/activity/embed/796302653

Today I had the distinct pleasure of swimming in both Lucky’s Lake and Jack Beattie’s Lake today.  One crossing at Lucky’s Lake, followed by a 1 mile swim at Jack Beattie’s place. I didn’t know how much time I had to get from Lucky’s Lake to Jack’s place or what to expect, so I only did one crossing at Lucky’s Lake.  Upon retrospection, I probably could have gotten away with doing two crossings at Lucky’s instead of the one because I found out I had a couple of hours between Lake swims.  Nonetheless Lucky’s lake was awesome as usual, but I was overwhelmed by the grandeur and hospitality of Jack Beattie’s family and friends.

While driving to Jack Beattie’s place I remember thinking “am I headed in the right direction?”.  I had this thought because my GPS began to take me into a very prestigious neighborhood in Winter Park.  I began driving by beautiful million dollar estates on my way to Jack’s lake.  Well little did I know that Jack Beattie’s swim was in back of Jack’s beautiful estate home too.

While still in awe at my surroundings, I was greeted with open arms, smiles and a killer breakfast of pancakes (strawberry, blueberry and chocolate chip), muffins, sausage, fresh fruit, mimosa just about anything you could want for a great breakfast.  All of this great food and friendship the for cost of just showing up.  I think this is what they are talking about when they say the best things in life are free.  I could not have imagine a more perfect Saturday as an open swimmer.

The swim itself was amazing.  The swim was in a triangle shape course with plenty of kayakers, etc to keep you safe.  The water clear and fresh, I felt like I could drink it if I got thirsty.  On both sides of the lake were million dollar mansion to enjoy while swimming if you so desire.  It was really hard to focus on the swimming as there was so much beauty to take in.  I did stop a few times to take it all in as this was my first time, I was less concerned about my time to complete.

God willing, I will be a participate of this annual activity for years to come.  Thanks Jack, thanks Lucky you guys are what give me hope for humanity!!

 

 

 
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Posted by on June 6, 2015 in Daily Training Log

 

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