A Simple Running Log

January 31, 2012

Training for 1/31/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 3:44 pm

I capped off January with a long track workout this morning, seven 800-meter repeats with warm-up, cool down and recoveries.

The sun was just starting to come up and it was still a little dark when I got there. The track was empty. I started on my warm-up mile. As I finished the first lap, I saw a walker approaching. As I came around to finish the second lap, I saw she had planted herself right in my inside lane, one of my pet peeves.

As I ran up behind her, I noticed she was wearing tall dress boots covered in buckles and a dressy winter coat. Not everyone at that track wears compression tights, but most people at least bother to put on some old sneakers.

I swung out to the second lane to go around her, and as I passed her, she very cheerfully started yelling out something about how we’re lucky to be alive and Jesus heals and Jesus protects and God bless you and have a blessed day. Or something. It was a very long message and I was running away from her at that point. I twisted my head around to sort of face her, said something like “Thanks, you too!” and went on my way. I wonder if she gives that line to every single person she meets in a day?

She walked a second lap and left, so by the time I had finished my first repeat, the track was empty again, and stayed that way the rest of the time I was there.

The repeats were slow today for the most part. My only excuse is there was a stiff headwind on the front stretch. Of course, that means it was at my back on the back stretch, so it should have evened out. In that case, I was just slow today.

My goal was 3:21 for each split. Actual splits were 3:26, 3:23, 3:24, 3:23, 3:23, 3:23 and 3:17. I had to at least run one split under goal, so I sprinted at the end of the last repeat, obviously.

I put on my iPod for the cool down, and like the last time I was at the track, the battery was dead, even though it had claimed to still have more than half its life when I turned it off after yesterday’s workout. I handled it pretty maturely — I called it a liar and told it I hated it. Then I ran two more miles to cool down, for a total of 8.2ish miles today.

I was only planning on running 8, but I tacked on most of an extra lap for a reason. Without that extra bit, my total for the month would have been 229.9, haha. I wanted to top 230.

Which I did! Here’s my summary of January:


  • Week 1 (Jan. 1 – 7): 50.6 miles
  • Week 2 (Jan. 8 – 14): 50.7
  • Week 3 (Jan. 15 – 21): 39.3
  • Week 4 (Jan. 22 – 28): 73.8
  • Week 5 (Jan. 29 – 31): 15.7

Total: 230.1

A new monthly mileage PR! I beat my previous mark, 225.6 from last August.

Like December, I stuck to my resolve to concentrate only on marathon training and didn’t run a race. I had some pretty crappy runs, like the 17-miler I had to walk in and the tempo run that wasn’t, but I also had some good speed work runs and two really good long runs of 19 and 20 miles.

February looks to be mostly the same. I only have two more true long runs, two 20-milers, and my tempo runs and hill and 800-meter repeats will top out this month. If I can survive this month, I’ll make it to the taper in one piece.

January 30, 2012

Training for 1/30/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 3:48 pm

January is almost OVER! Only one more full month of winter!

This morning, I did some push-ups, ab exercises, invisible chair-sitting and weight training upstairs, and then I did an easy lap around the 4.5-mile loop by myself. Clark was still home, so I knew Pepper wouldn’t want to go out in the cold if he could stay home and not be alone.

I did some barefoot exercises and stretching to finish up.

This weekend was the end of the first of three peak mileage weeks in my marathon training plan.

Saturday morning, I ran my first 20-miler of this training cycle. I decided to do the out-and-back I ran when training for my last marathon, so I could avoid the psychological mindfuck that comes with running a 14.5-mile loop for more than two hours, seeing home and forcing myself to keep going for another 5.5-mile loop.

I still hate out-and-backs though, so maybe I should see if I can map out a 20-mile loop for the next one.

Anyway, Saturday’s run came at the end of a very long week. Because I had switched around my short trail run and 19-miler the previous weekend, it had only been six days since my last long run. I had also run every day since, including 10.5 miles the day before.

I had three salt caps, one of which I took every five miles, and an energy bar, which I ate half of about a third and two-thirds of the way through the run, and my water bottle. The first 10.15 miles went well, but I could tell as I made the turnaround the second half was going to be tougher. My legs were feeling pretty dead.

I kept pushing. The last five miles were the hardest. I was so freaking tired of running! I finished pretty strong though — 20.3 miles in 2:54:20, average pace of 8:34/mile, by far my best 20-miler to date.

That capped off a 73.8-mile stretch over seven days.

I was done before noon, which was nice, because then I got to go with Clark and Dave to the Harley shop in Seaford, where they were having a chili cook-off to raise money for muscular distrophy research or something. For $5, I got to sample several different chilis and vote for my favorite. I really liked one that had apples in it.

When we left the Harley shop, Dave and Clark rode their motorcycles down to the Blackwater area in Dorchester County and back, but Pepper and I went home, where I somehow got sucked into these documentaries about Amish people on the National Geographic channel. That’s how I spent the rest of the afternoon.

The first documentary was about four or five Amish teenagers from Pennsylvania who went to the U.K. for a month, living with a different family every week. My favorite line from the whole afternoon was when one of the teenage Amish girls was explaining why she didn’t approve of the low-cut shirt (and by “low-cut,” I mean you could see her collar bone) her host family’s teenage daughter was wearing.

“God hates low necklines.”

Really? I would think God has more important things to worry about than necklines. And anyway, weren’t Adam and Eve naked until they ate that apple? The Amish girls really went into a tizzy when they went to the beach and saw girls in bikinis, haha. I hate to laugh at other people’s religious beliefs, but I just find it absurd that the Amish think it’s women’s responsibility to wear frumpy, baggy dresses to “hide the shape of their bodies” just so they can be sure they’re not tempting the men.

It made me think of the first time I ran a 10K in Wyoming, Del., in the middle of July a couple of years ago. It was hot as hell, so I was wearing shorts and a sports  bra. That’s Mennonite country, and we saw a few buggies along the race course. A guy just happened to be passing me as we ran past a buggy with a woman in it, and he wondered aloud what she must have thought of my outfit. Now I know — she thought God hated it, haha.

When Clark got home, we went over to his parents’ house for his birthday dinner, which was an oyster appetizer, lasagna, asparagus, beans and fruit, and chocolate cake for dessert.

Yesterday, I took Pepper to the trail for an easy 3-miler. We ran into three dogs within a half-mile stretch, ranging in size from a fully grown German shepherd to some little yippy dog. Pepper was sprinting for his life every time, haha.

Yesterday afternoon, Clark and I went to my parents’ house, and I finished going through all my NASCAR stuff. In the end, I had 70 items listed to try to sell as a bulk collection. I kept six Tony Stewart rookie season cars to try to sell on their own, and I kept a few more Bobby Labonte collectibles. There were still three or four boxes of junk, stuff I didn’t want and I know no one else will either, like a jelly candy-filled plastic car I got in 1995, a bag of M&Ms in Bobby’s car’s colors that are so old they’ve created one massive chunk of candy in the bag and candy canes from 2004.

January 27, 2012

Training for 1/27/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 4:30 pm

This morning, I had a 10-mile easy run on the schedule.

It was pretty warm, but also very windy and raining. Oh well. I least I got to wear shorts.

I left Pepper at home, since he’s run the last two days and tends to hate being outside in anything that’s too cold, too hot, too windy or too wet.

The wind was pretty annoying, particularly for the roughly 6.5 consecutive miles I seemed to be running head on into it, but I still managed an easy 8:21/mile pace, finishing my 10.5-mile loop in just under an hour and 28 minutes.

I did some push-ups, invisible chair-sitting, barefoot exercises and stretching at home.

Tomorrow is my first of three 20-milers. The rain should have moved on by then, so it should be a better day for a run.

Tomorrow is also Clark’s 29th birthday. We’re having dinner at his parents’ house tomorrow night.

Sunday, I’ll take Pepper to the trail for a few miles, and then I don’t know what I’m doing the rest of the day. There’s no football and NASCAR doesn’t start for another month. Maybe we’ll do something exciting, like our taxes.

January 26, 2012

Training for 1/26/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 3:56 pm

This morning, I had a 4-mile pace run on the schedule, so Pepper and I ran the 4.5-mile loop.

I decided to just let Pepper go as fast as he wanted today. I figured it would be too fast for a pace run, but that was fine with me, since I’d skipped out on that tempo run two days ago.

The first mile was slow, just under 8:00, as Pepper took several pee breaks and we got held up a little getting out of the way of a tractor and another car trying to get past each other on the road. The second mile was faster, but we were held up again by one of the neighbors’ dogs coming out of its yard to say hi to Pepper.

The last 2.5 miles were mostly distraction-free, and we were rolling at or under 7:00 miles. In the end, we ran 4.5 miles in 33 minutes on the dot, average pace of 7:20/mile.

At home, I gave Pepper a treat and did some stretching and foam rolling.

January 25, 2012

Training for 1/25/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 5:01 pm

This morning, I did some push-ups, ab exercises, invisible chair-sitting and weight training upstairs, and then Pepper and I did an easy lap around the 5.5-mile loop. At home, I did some barefoot exercises and stretching.

Lame blog post, but that’s all I’ve got.

January 24, 2012

Training for 1/24/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 5:24 pm

Today was supposed to be this week’s tempo run, but I just didn’t feel like doing it. I slept 10 hours last night and woke up still tired and a little sore. That might have been because I did in fact do my weight training last night after work, or it might have been because it’s only been two days since my last long run. I don’t know why I felt so flat today, I just know that I did.

As I did my warm up mile, I could tell attempting 45 minutes at a hard pace was only going to end in frustration. When I got to the point where I should have started running fast, I just kept up my easy pace.

I ran the 9.5-mile loop I would have done had I actually run the tempo run. I didn’t time it.

When I got home, I did some stretching.

January 23, 2012

Training for 1/23/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 8:00 pm

This morning, I had a hard time getting going. I was a little depressed and a little more hungover after the Ravens’ loss to the Patriots yesterday, losing their shot at the Super Bowl this year. It was mostly the hangover that was keeping me in bed though. I’m not one of those nuts who thinks a sports team’s performance personally affects me.

I dilly dallied long enough that I decided to skip the weight training this morning and just do my run. I’ll do the weight training when I get home from work tonight. Probably.

It was cold, gray and wet outside, a real peach of a January Monday morning. I put Pepper in his jacket and harness, and we went out for a lap around the 4.5-mile loop.

About two and a half miles in, the rain came down a little harder, but otherwise it was a pretty routine run. I did some barefoot exercises and stretching at home.

This weekend’s weather was very much like today’s. Saturday morning, I woke up intending to run my 19-mile long run. But it was pouring outside, and my legs felt heavy after the two previous days’ hard runs. Nineteen miles in cold rain sounded like a prison sentence.

So I cut myself some slack. I decided to hold off on the long run until Sunday, when the rain was supposed to have moved on, and do my 3-mile trail run Saturday. I knew Pepper wouldn’t want to run in that rain even if it was on a trail, so I went by myself.

The run was OK. The trail was soaked, and my shoes and socks were waterlogged after the first quarter mile. I ran into one other person on the trail, an old guy out walking with his poodle. The poodle was not leashed and kept trying to run after me, and the old guy wasn’t doing much to try to stop it, which bugged me. I shook the poodle and finished the run.

At home, I did some yoga. Then I wasted a few hours watching crap TV. I finally got up the motivation to do something and cleaned the house and baked cookies and brownies for watching the football games at Dave and Kasey’s house the next day. That night, Clark went out to a bar with one of his friends, but I stayed home with Pepper, ate sushi and watched “Ghost Adventures.” I love that show.

Sunday morning, the rain was gone and with it had gone my excuses to hold off on the long run. I ate some breakfast and headed outside.

It was still gray and windy, and the temperature was just above freezing. The first mile was head-on into the wind, and I actually felt a little sorry for myself, as though I was being forced to do it. 

Then I made a turn onto another road and out of the wind, I realized my 19-mile run was already down to an 18-miler and I felt better. By the time I hit the 5-mile marker, I was feeling pretty good. I had my water bottle with me, and I took a salt cap every 45 minutes, and ate half of an Odwalla bar around the 6.5- and 13-mile points.

I finished the 14.5-mile loop and went in the house to get Pepper for the last 4.5. I got him into his coat and harness, but as soon as we got outside, he made it very clear he had no interest in running. I ran him back to the house, dropped him off, got my iPod back and took off to finish the run on my own.

That last loop flew by. I felt really good through the whole thing, and even sped up to 8:00 miles for the last couple. Two weeks ago, I felt like total crap at the 13-mile point of a 17-miler, and had to walk much of the last four miles. Yesterday, I was cruising when I hit 17 miles.

I finished the second loop and checked my time — two hours and 44 minutes for 19 miles, average pace of 8:37/mile. I felt invincible as I walked a short cool down back to the house. I felt like I’d just started, and I almost wanted to run some more. I love runs like that.

I took a shower and headed over to Dave and Kasey’s house. We watched the Ravens lose to the Patriots and the Giants beat the 49ers. At one point in the 49ers-Giants game, Clark told me to pick a word, and we would have to take a drink every time the announcers said that word. I picked “down.” I think we both finished off two beers before the commercial break. Every other word was down — third down, down by seven points, going for a touchdown.

I crashed as soon as we got home. And then this morning came.

January 20, 2012

Training for 1/20/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 4:49 pm

Today was to be a middle distance run at goal marathon pace, 7:45/mile.

I took Pepper with me for a trip around the ol’ 9.5-mile loop. It was a beautiful morning for a run, clear, cold and just a little breeze, nothing annoying.

As usual, the first mile was pretty slow, this time mostly due to a lot of traffic on Woodpecker Road for whatever reason. We passed the utility pole that marks the first mile in 8:20, 35 seconds off goal pace.

Pepper seems to naturally run progression runs though. The closer we get to home, the faster he wants to get there. He always knows which road will get us there quickest, and I always have to yank him back on track if I’m not planning on going that way.

By three miles in, we were averaging 8:00 miles. We were getting closer and closer to a 7:45/mile average as we passed the four- and five-mile marks. Beyond five miles on that route, I’m not really that sure where the mile markers would be, so we just kept running until we finished the loop.

In the end, we ran 9.5 miles in 1:12:45, average overall pace of 7:40/mile.

Those runs with Pepper are the only time I wished I had a Garmin that would measure out miles and record each one’s split for me. I would love to see just how fast we were going those last few miles, compared to the first few, to get the average down to that.

At home, I gave Pepper a treat, did some push-ups, invisible chair-sitting and barefoot exercises and finished up with stretching.

Tomorrow, I’m running a 19-mile long run. I think I’ll do the 14.5-mile loop on my own and get Pepper for the last 4.5.

Sunday, I’ll take Pepper to the trail for a few easy miles. In the afternoon, we’re going to Dave and Kasey’s house to watch the Ravens-Patriots game. The Ravens are definitely the underdogs going into this one, but it’s not impossible. Stranger things have already happened this post season.

January 19, 2012

Training for 1/19/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 5:11 pm

This morning was clear and calm but rather cold, with temperatures in the low 20s I think. I had this week’s tempo run on the schedule, which increased to 45 minutes.

I decided on my 9.5-mile loop. I did a mile easy to warm up, and then set off on the tempo run with a goal pace of 7:16/mile.

I felt really good today and, with no wind slowing me down, sailed through just over 6.2 miles in 45 minutes, average pace of 7:12/mile.

I did a five-minute recovery jog and then ran as many 30-second sprints as I could before I got to the point in the loop where I’d have a half-mile left, which wound up being seven sprints. I then ran that last half-mile home slowly to cool down.

In all, I ran my 9.5-mile loop in about an hour and 13 minutes, average overall pace of 7:41/mile. I did some stretching at home to finish up.

January 18, 2012

Training for 1/18/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 4:07 pm

Apparently I’m being a bad blogger by even posting today, as it looks like WordPress is joining several other sites in a blackout to protest a couple of anti-piracy bills being contested in Congress. I haven’t read the bills myself, but a lot of websites think the language is threatening to freedom of speech, hence the protest.

Anyway, the Shamrock Marathon is exactly two months from today, so training continues, and so does this blog.

This morning, I did some push-ups, ab exercises, invisible chair-sitting and weight lifting upstairs, and then Pepper and I went out for a lap around the 4.5-mile loop.

The wind had died a little since last night, when it was blowing so hard it was keeping me up. There’s a cover over the crawlspace, under one of our bedroom windows, and when the wind blows the right way, the cover bangs against the opening. It was banging around like crazy much of last night. I hate running in wind, so I was lying there in bed dreading my run later.

But luckily, we seemed to have gotten a bit of a reprieve this morning. Though it was still pretty breezy, there were never any gusts that stopped me or Pepper in our tracks. We finished the run, and at home, I did some barefoot exercises and stretching.

Yesterday, I got a little post-race program from the Steamtown Marathon in the mail. It had the newspaper articles on the men’s and women’s winners, testimonials from runners who’d emailed the race director after the race, pictures of runners finishing and hanging out near the finish area and a complete listing of all 1,869 official finishers. That’s the first time I’ve gotten something like that. It was a nice touch. Clark called it my yearbook, haha.

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