Friday, November 30, 2012

Wrestling To Keep Up

I didn't get my post finished yesterday as planned.  Instead, I attended the local high school wrestling meet.  The meet reminded me that part of the problem I'm dealing with in my knees is likely due to trauma dealt to them when I wrestled in high school.  I recall at least 3 incidents when a knee was popped "out-of-joint"  back then.

My father helped start my interest in wrestling when I was in junior high.  I continued through high school and even a bit of intramural while at ISU.  I also thought of my father when hiking the trails yesterday.  Piper and I passed a large, flat rock that sits high above the river.  I recall sitting on this rock and talking with my Dad back when I was in grade school.  The land was privately owned back then but Dad obtained permission to hike back along the river to look for the old Krieger homestead.

Got in 7 miles on Thursday.

Today was warmer than yesterday but somehow seemed colder because there was more wind.  It was a good day to put in some more time so we went 10 miles.  Even spooked a Barred Owl at one point in the woods and it landed very close after a short flight.

(borrowed photo)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Freezing Fog

The forecast for today was for some mid-30s weather.  But the morning was slow to warm due to some fog.  As Piper and I headed for the trails, the sun seemed determined to burn the fog away.  It resulted in a very fine frozen fog snow that covered the trees and the trail.  quite interesting to be there while the change occurred.

It turned into a very pleasant day out so we covered some extra ground for a 10 mile total.  There were other runners out...some I knew like Dianne Kruckenburg (who made the trip to run Boston back in 1983 when I ran it) and some I didn't know like a woman runner that I see on Lime Creek often but have never attempted to introduce myself or visit with!  Seth Bell was out on his super off-road Surly bike.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Change of Seasons...Half Fast

The sudden change in weather has coincided with an end to my incentive to stay in any sort of running shape.  I do, however, see the real possibility to hit an annual total miles that I've not achieved before.  So now each day finds me eager to hit the trails for some good, basic mileage.  The miles seem to come but the time takes nearly twice as long. So that now puts me in the category as a "half fast" runner.

The dry fall then cold temps has made for a rather dramatic shift in the trail's appearance.

Calmus Creek from Ernie's Bridge

My day started with a surprise mention in a blog post by a friend who has been moved to Duluth for a while. I appreciate the fact that my running friendships mean something to some athletes through the years, and it lends additional credence to the fact that as I become older and I can find satisfaction from running in many other ways than race performance!

Yesterday ended up being another 7 mile day and today Piper and I took a little extra time to get in 8.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Weekly Summary ; Monday Nov. 19 to Sunday Nov. 25

This week I've begun to consider trying the daily blog entries again.  There's plenty of seasonal things happening on the trails and plenty of wildlife so I could start carrying the camera again!  Also, I just had my son's dog, Piper, return for a few weeks so will be on the trails with her.

I was still in recovery mode this week.  My body was quite sore after last Saturday's race so the beginning of the week was a bit of a struggle.  Much better by the end of the week.

Event photos have been posted so will throw a shot of the start onto this blog entry...over 7000 runners starting a 7 mile cross-country race...billed as the largest in the U.S.

Monday - 7 miles

Tuesday - 10 miles in two workouts

Wednesday - 6 miles

Thursday - 6 miles  (at Pilot Knob rather than Lime Creek and after Thanksgiving dinner!)  Weather change moving in with a ten degree drop in temp while out

Friday - 6 miles  bitterly cold and very windy

Saturday - 7 miles

Sunday - 9 miles   for a 51 mile week

if I continue some steady miles for the next 5 weeks, I can hit 3000 miles for this year...the most I have ever logged for one year!  That helps provide some incentive even without a race on the horizon.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Weekly Summary: Monday Nov. 12 to Sunday Nov. 18

This week was very inconsistent regarding training because my knees were tender and the race was imminent. I even broke down and chose to try some cortisone injections on Tuesday for a little more aggressive, anti-inflammatory response.  It didn't seem as though I attained the degree of relief that I've noticed before, though.

Somehow I ended up first in my age-group at Saturday's race.  As pleased as I was at the place, I was still a bit disappointed with the much slower time than last year.  I suppose it means I need to be able to maintain more running workouts and less hiking!

Monday - 7 miles

Tuesday - 4 miles

Wednesday - 10 miles

Thursday - 5 miles

Friday - 2 miles hiking with a good hill on the State Fair grounds.

Saturday - 8 miles with 7 during the race and additional warmup

Sunday - 4 miles   for a 40 mile total on the week..

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Living History Farms Race...2012

I plan to write a weekly summary but wanted to post about this race today.  It's been an annual highlight and sort-of an end to the season's racing.  This year found the weather to be fantastic and even with all the dry weather, there was plenty of water and mud hazards.  Also saw a rather good-sized, antlered buck spooked by the racers and it was running against the grain so-to-speak and towards the runners!

A writer that contributes to the Des Moines Register interviewed me and Dave Nauman this week and posted on-line last night. A bit of a short history of our master's racing team.

I really struggled with my knees during preparation for this year's race and could tell immediately when we began to warm-up that the day was going to be tough on the knees.  Therefore, was quite surprised to take first place for my age group.  In fact, McDuffers did rather well in our age groups, yet dropped to a 3rd place finish as a Master's Team.  Results are here  or try this link to a Des Moines Register video.


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Weekly Summary: Nov. 5 to Nov.11 --- XC Nationals

This was a busy week as the NIACC XC teams sharpened for the trip to Ina, Illinois for the National Junior College Athletic Association national championships.  On a personal note, I was frustrated with how difficult I'm finding my knees feeling while running.  I've been pressing a bit because I always try to perform well at the Living History Farms Race in Des Moines as it's coming up this next Saturday!

The teams did a great job of coming together for Nationals.  The women ended up placing 24th after dropping out of the top 25 by the end of the season. The men ended up placing 5th after falling to 12th in the ratings prior to the race.   Results are here.

Monday - 6 miles (a lot of ankle pain as if sprained or strained)
Tuesday - two sessions of 5 miles each (fast hiking)
Wednesday - 6 miles
Thursday - 5.5 miles  (ran the women's course then hiked in the evening)
Friday - 4 miles  (ran 2 of the xc course then hiked in the evening)
Saturday - 2.5 miles
Sunday - 7 miles  for a weekly total of 41 miles.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Weekly Summary: Monday Oct. 29 to Sunday Nov. 4...Take A Seat

This week went a bit better than last.  Without a dog along, I was able to stay focused on a few more running sessions rather than hiking. But, with the switch to more aggressive runs, came some unanticipated soreness.  The lesson here, I suppose, is that I'm getting older and need to adjust my workouts accordingly!

I was surprised when I reached the Badlands Loop, one day, to find someone had built a rock bench beside the two cairns that I've been maintaining through recent years.  The bench was sturdy enough to sit on.

Monday - 7 miles

Tuesday - 11.5 miles  (lots of short quick pickups during the run; sore after)

Wednesday - 7 miles (several stretches of running but glute still hurts)

Thursday - 7 miles  (all but the 1st and last mile were running at a steady pace)

Friday - 5 miles hiking

Saturday - 1.5 miles (took a recruiting trip to Des Moines to visit with athletes at the Iowa Senior All-Star XC Meet)  

Sunday - 10 miles (mostly running)  for 49 miles on the week