The countdown.


Last night, I couldn't even put my own socks on. Eventually, this afternoon, my back got better. Still haven't run in 3 weeks. Probably not the best idea, in most circumstances, to stop running for 3 weeks when a marathon is less than two months away (now, just over a month away).

Stretching.

Went to a stretching class at the YMCA at the suggestion of She Who Must Be Obeyed*. The class was taught by her regular yoga instructor. Here's what I found out: My flexibility is for crap right now!

But I plan to return. In the meantime, my back is much better, but my left hamstring is still bothering me.

*Borrowing the term from David Feherty.


Helpful.

Feeling much better, thanks to a friend's suggestion of the ThermaCare heat wrap. 

 My 17-year-old, upon seeing me wear this under my khaki shorts, observed that it looked like I was wearing an adult diaper. I suppose I should get used to that.


Uh-oh.

On Thursday, I made the mistake of following a personal-training session with an hour and a half's worth of painting numbers and hashmarks on a football field. My lower back hasn't been right for the past two days, and I sure haven't been able to run. Though the marathon is less than 50 days away, I might need a few days off.


"Did you get dressed in the dark?"

Random thoughts on today's 6.5-mile group run:

  • The Galloway run-walk program I'm used to calls for a cycle of two minutes running followed by one minute of walking. But the group I ran with this morning went 90 seconds/30 seconds. Thirty seconds surely doesn't seem like a rest, but 90 seconds is a manageable run. Having said that, it felt like this group was cranking out a pretty good pace.
  • One of my fellow runners asked me, "Did you get dressed in the dark this morning?" Well, my shorts were on properly--what was the problem? "Your shirt's on inside out." Ah, so it was.
  • Helped myself to a good, though only slightly luxurious breakfast afterwards at my neighborhood* coffee place. I ate the breakfast but brought the coffee home. Luckily for me, I noticed the neighbors' grandchildren playing in the yard before I got out of the car trying to carry my wallet, phone, and Camelbak in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other. The ill-fitting lid came off the cup, coffee spilled on my shirt and into my lap, and I uttered, "F-f-f-f-f..." but did not complete the word as I remembered the tender ears 20 feet away. After that, I smelled like rotting meat and coffee.
  • I could definitely feel the effects of my two sessions with the personal trainer this week. To put it mildly: my glutes are sore.

* Not as close to my house as the college-campus outposts of Au Bon Pain and Starbucks but locally owned.


So many cancellations.

I had great plans for this year. Let's have a look at how it's turned out so far:

 1/1: Hill Yeah 5K, Nashville

1/23: Zoo Run Run 5K, Nashville (I think some day-of-race errand came up)

2/6: Cedars Frostbite Half-Marathon, Lebanon, TN (undertrained; punted)

2/13: Hot Chocolate 15K, Nashville

3/5: Tom King Classic Half-Marathon, Nashville

4/2: Richland Creek Run, Nashville

4/30: St. Jude Rock 'n' Roll Nashville Half-Marathon

5/7: Iron Nugget Sprint Triathlon, Burns, TN

5/14: Achilles Hope & Possibility 5-Miler, Nashville

6/18: Grandma's Marathon, Duluth, MN (showed up but dropped out somewhere between miles 16 and 17)

6/26: Chattanooga Waterfront Sprint Triathlon, Chattanooga, TN (can't even remember the reason for canceling this one, other than I figured there was no way I was properly trained for the swim)

7/9: Paris Landing Sprint Triathlon, Paris, TN

8/27: Cedars of Lebanon Triathlon, Lebanon, TN (<3 hr. sleep=no way)

8/28: Rocketman Triathlon, Huntsville, AL (at least I got the refund)

9/17: Hendersonville Half, Hendersonville, TN (conflicts with parent/family weekend at son's college)

10/30: Marine Corps Marathon (outcome to be determined)

Having said that, I also did the following races:

3/12: WSM Springer Mountain Farms 5K

4/16: Purity Moosic City Dairy Dash/"Smitty" 15K

5/30: Chattanooga Chase 8K

6/17: William A. Irvin 5K, Duluth, MN

7/4: Nashville Striders Firecracker 5000

8/6: East Nashville Tomato 5K

So, that's still about 16 races I hope to have done by the end of the year (and I'll most likely add the Turkey Trot 8k in November).

But the lesson here? Ignore the price increases, and wait until the week of the race to sign up!