Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Up and down week, but pushing along

I'm increasing my miles in preparation for the SF marathon.  This week, I should get in b/n 40 and 45 miles (my first 40 mile week this training period).  I had a good 12 mile run on Sunday and had an awesome 7 mile tempo run (7:19 pace) on Tuesday.

But, the best was my lunch run today, Wed.  It was great to meet with a couple of my fellow running pacers from the SF marathon training group for a 5 mile run in San Jose.  It was nice to get out for lunch and grab some fresh air.  This was my first lunch run at my new job in San Jose and it was great.

One problem:  my old job had towels to use for the shower after the run.  I had wrongly assumed that would be the case with this one.  I had to use an extra shirt to dry off.

So, I've been a bit down about my weight.  I've started to watch what I eat and I've been running every day since I stepped on the scale.  I've lost 3 pounds so only 7 to go in order to get to an okay race weight.  So I needed something positive.  And, I got something!  On my lunch run, we were chatting away and I mentioned that I was going to be 41 (I think we were talking about BQ times).  She said something to the effect "wow, I thought you were close to my age."  She is only 28.  So that made me feel very good.

Now on to my daughter.  She is now 17 months old.  It is just amazing how fast times goes by.  She was a bit of a slow walker.  Meaning she just started walking soon.  I've place a video below of her walking.  Most kids should walk by 15 months, but Brooklyn pushed it into the 16th month.  She could walk for months before, but would only walk a little here and there.  She would refuse to walk most of the time (by walking I mean by herself, she would walk all over if you held her hand).  The most she would walk was only about 10 to 30 steps and once she knew we were trying to get her to talk it would be a day or two before we could get another 10 steps in.  Now she just goes and goes and goes.  It is awesome to see her move around and explore.

Having a baby or 17 month old around (I think even when she is 50, she will still be my baby) is great, but it can have interesting (I'll use that word) moments.  And, now every other night or so we are having an interesting moment.  Brooklyn used to love taking baths.  She would pitch a fit when we tried to take her "out" of the tub to end the bath.  Now, however, she has decided she hates the water.  Hates being in the tub.  And, the mere act of us trying to wet her with water causes a massive screaming attack.  Hopefully, this will be a short phase or the neighbors might start wondering what we are doing to her.  I wonder if she picked it up from our cats freaking out when we give them a bath (we have to bath the cats every week to help with my wife's allergies).

Saturday, May 21, 2011

I hate the scale!

My training for the SF marathon I think is going well.  I am running my tempo and speed runs faster.  I'm doing more hill work than I ever have for a marathon and can tell I'm getting stronger on the hills.  I'm pushing my long runs at a faster pace.

Yet, today after many months I stepped on the scale and was . . . 10 pounds heavier than I thought!  What the Frak!  I don't feel heavier.  I'm so disappointed and have complained so much about it that my wife is tried of hearing about it.

It is so frustrating because my training seems to be going well and I feel good as far as my body.  Well, now it is time to really get focused.  I have a two step plan to get those 10 pounds off:

(1) Increase the weekly miles.  I have been slowly building up the miles, but now is the time for 40 plus miles each week (only so much time with the job, teaching and the baby . . . I've just got into the 30s the last few weeks) with a buildup to the mid-50s.

(2)  Watching what I eat.  With me running faster or pushing my speed and tempo runs, I've not really worried about my food.  I always try to watch what I eat, but I think I've been eating too much pasta.  So, I need to cut back and have more salads.

My wife tells me to just focus on how I'm running.  This morning, I went up a one mile tough hill and went up it significantly better than I had three months ago (the last time I ran it).  So, I'm doing good with my fitness.  But, I'm still need to lose the pounds.  I started running because I was very much overweight.  I lost 60 pounds as I trained for my first marathon.  Thus, I know I can lose these 10 pounds.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Running fun and baby fun

My last marathon was CIM in December.  It feels like ages ago.  I'm now starting to get excited about the SF Marathon.  My training is gearing up.  I'm a pacer for the South Bay SF marathon training group . . . which means I got a hat, some shirts and a free entry.  Yeah.  It is though so much fun to run with people that are training for their first marathon.  Each time you hit a new long run, you are doing a personal best in distance.  It reminds me so much of 2008 when I started running.  The hill runs at Rancho are fun.  We get 6-7 miles in and get some great views of the bay area.  I need to bring my camera.

Still working to get faster.  Just plugging away at trying to run my tempo and speed workouts faster than in the past, while pushing a little harder on the long runs.

Okay now for some baby fun.

A few days ago, it was my wife's b-day.  Her parents were in town and we decided to go to dinner.  We went to a place that is a little more upscale.  It was a weekday so it was not crowed and okay to bring a 16 month old.  We ordered, got food for us and Brooklyn.  Brooklyn eat some and then got tired of sitting around.  I take her for a little walk around the restaurant so that the others can eat.  I start to smell something.  I take a deep sniff and think "oh oh."  I then pick her up to take her back to the table.  I feel something.  It does not feel good after you had an "oh oh" smell.  I lift her jacket (which she had on over her shirt).  I immediately notice that there is something wet and brown coming up from the diaper and soaking her shirt.  I quickly move back to the table and let our party know of the incident.  We look in the diaper bag and . . . find . . . no diapers . . . no wipes . . . and no extra clothes.

My wife gets up and we rush to the bathroom which has no changing table.  But, they do have rolls of paper towels and I immediately start layering the paper towels on the floor of the bathroom.  We have to very gently remove Brooklyn's shirt as we want to limit the wet and brown stuff to an area we can control.  Now, my daughter generally is a pain to change when she decides she does not want to be changed.  And, in the middle of the bathroom floor is one of those times when she is not going to make this easy.  We both needed to be there, one holding her and one cleaning her.  How I wished there was a shower nearby.  After a few minutes of struggling to hold Brooklyn so we can clean the mess and after filling the trash can with tons of used toilet paper that was used to clean such mess.  Her jacket was okay to use until we got her home (we only lived a few minutes away).  I guess Brooklyn wanted to give her mom a little B-day present.

Here is a recent video of Brooklyn, on her horse:

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

It is hard to get faster!!!

Okay, I finally broke 4 hours last year at CIM.

Great, but now what is my next time goal?  There is really only one number out there:  3:20!  Or, maybe get a sex change and then it's 3:40 or maybe wait 20 years . . .  Since I don't want to confuse my daughter with the sex change and I don't have patience to wait for many years, then I must get faster and I must get faster soon.

So the last couple of months I've been working on my speed.  I used a heart rate monitor to gage my tempo and speed workouts and tried to run them much faster than in the past.  I've been doing my long runs faster.

But, now to feel sorry for myself:  I have a great 16-month old at home, a busy work schedule, and I teach.  Which means my running time is limited.  So must of my runs have to be late at night or early in the morning and, even then, it is hard (or impossible due to time constraints) to put in more than 30-40 miles a week.  Maybe, a week or two I can get up to 50 miles.

Thus, I'm finding it very hard to get the increase in speed I need to make such a significant improvement for my marathon time.  But, I'm not giving up.  I'll do the best I can.  It took my 6 marathons to break 4 so it will definitely be a challenge to knock off 40 minutes off my marathon time.  I realize at someone point I'll have to pick a time such as 3:40 or so and work then work from there.

If anyone has helpful hints to increase your speed with a busy schedule, please do let me know.

Here is a video of Brooklyn on Easter: