Friday, December 28, 2007


Last night I ran an easy 5 miles on the treadmill. Two of the nice things about exercising at night are that; 1) it keeps me from eating and 2) I’m more likely to add in some ab work after my run. When I ran with Eric a couple of weeks ago, he asked if I was doing my ab work and I had to say no. I felt guilty and since then I’ve done ab 3-4 "workouts".

Last night I was looking at Daws’s and Lydiard’s schedule and seeing how they layout for Boston. It looks like I have one more three-week cycle of base-building before moving onto the hill phase.

This morning was one of those days when I thought, “How can you not love winter?” The temperature was 18 degrees, the winds were calm, and I had just finished skiing for 47 minutes. The trails were groomed right before I started, so skiing was a lot easier than my previous outing. I still need major work on my technique.

Since it’s pretty quiet around here, I went for a 6 mile run over lunch. The footing was crap, so I was happy to not pull anything. I wish I had my Yaktrax with me.

I’ve been reading a couple of new books lately. I started reading Again to Carthage (the sequel to Once a Runner) a month or so ago. I’m about 130 pages in and wondering why he didn’t title the book Once a Fisherman. There has, literally, been next to nothing written about running yet. Yesterday I did a quick search on to see what others have to say. Reviews were basically mixed, but I’d say the majority didn’t care for the book – at least not when compared to OAR. Someone said the running starts around page 170. I’ll get there but now it’s going to have to wait until I finish Bowerman and the Men of Oregon. I got this book last Saturday and haven’t been able to put it down.

Quote of the day;

“You can preach a better sermon with your life than with your lips.” – Oliver Goldsmith

Thursday, December 27, 2007


My latest quandary is trying to figure out how to fit some cross-country skiing into my routine. For me, skiing is a lot like biking; I really enjoy it, but rarely do it. Part of my “problem” is that I can’t convince myself that cross training is as effective (or at least a valuable part of a training program) as running. Plus, I have to drive to the trails, there’s the whole waxing issue, and finally, having snow is important.

I can remember being fired up to ski last year and then we didn’t get any snow until mid-January. By that time I was like, “Screw it, I’ll just keep running through the winter.”

Well this year we have the snow and one of my co-workers waxed my skis for me. So I took advantage of yesterday’s day off and skied for 35 minutes. I would have gone longer but the 4 inches of new snow hadn’t been groomed yet. And when your technique sucks as much as mine, it makes it difficult – especially on hills. Besides, it was my first ski in two years, so I thought I’d ease into it a little.

Of course, that wasn’t enough exercise for the day, so last night I ran a moderate 8 miles on the treadmill.

Not much else to report, so I’ll provide links to Matt’s and Brad’s latest journal entries.

Quote of the day;

“In the long run, you hit only what you aim at. Therefore, though you may fail, you had better aim at something high.” – Henry David Thoreau

Wednesday, December 26, 2007


Today's my seventh and last day off in a row from work, so I'll make this a quick training update and then hopefully get back in the blogging routine tomorrow.

After Friday's 22 miler, I ran a very easy 5 miles on Saturday. I think I felt every step of the previous day's run during those 45 minutes. That gave me 76 miles for the week on 6 days of running and 7 total runs.

Last Monday the Vikings were on Monday Night Football and I was able to get in a nice progression run on the treadmill during the game. This week they played on Sunday Night Football and I decided to jump on the treadmill again - besides, it's been snowing like crazy around here, so getting on the treadmill didn't bother me.

Anyway, rather than progressively pick the pace up over the course of the entire run, I did more of a marathon paced workout. After a 3 mile warmup I was at 7:00 pace and gradually dropped down to 6:26 pace. To be honest, I was almost shocked at how easy sub-2:50 pace felt.

Looking back at my log from a year ago, I see a 10 mile run with 6 miles at 6:48 pace - during which my HR was 170-180. Sunday's run was 12 miles and it included 8 miles at 6:36 pace - and get this, my highest HR was 172.

It seems like I'm doing something right.

This week is going to be a cutback week for me. Monday I ran an easy 6 miles. The biggest news from that run is that it put me over 3,000 miles for the year. Yesterday I ran an easy 8 miles on less than ideal footing. My Yaktrax helped, but they can't do anything about the areas that have 6 inches of powder.

Quote of the day;

"Are you in this simply to do mindless labor or do you want to improve? You can't improve if you're always sick or injured." - Bill Bowerman

Saturday, December 22, 2007


Since I had Thursday and Friday off from work this week and since family is coming in today, I decided to treat the last two days as my weekend. Thursday I ran 12 miles with the middle 8 miles progessively faster as I dropped from 7:30 pace to 6:40 pace. Given that this was run outside, as opposed to the treadmill, I was really happy with how easy the two miles at 6:40 pace felt. After the run I thought, "For December 20th, I'm pretty fit." Then I immediately thought, "Let's not get carried away."

Yesterday was one of those days when everything you plan comes together. With a day to myself I wanted to get in another long run before the holidays officially arrive. The weather worked out great with temps in the low 30s. I ended up running for 2:59 and calling it 22 miles. A few people have told me I should try to get in a 30 mile run sometime. I'm not sure if I'll get there, but this is a step in the right direction. I'm trying to break out of the mindset that 20 miles is enough prior to a marathon.

Quote of the day;
"People want to be good - right now. They think that a couple of months of training should put them in great shape. It doesn't happen overnight - you're changing tissue: heart, circulatory system and muscle cell tissue...The most important thing in athletic improvement is consistency." - Dennis Barker

Friday, December 21, 2007

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


After Monday’s workouts, I knew anything would be tough on Tuesday. Since I stayed up about two hours more than usual on Monday night, I decided to sleep in on Tuesday. Figuring I’d be tired Tuesday evening, I was planning on running right when I got home from work. However, my wife called and wanted me to pick up dinner and then Kinsey wanted to go ice skating.

In the end, I took the day off.

I figure I could have run an easy 5 miles on the treadmill at 8 PM, but the thought of that didn’t sound appealing in the least. So I settled on a zero and headed to bed around 8:45.

This morning I ran an easy 11 miles. Even with the easy pace, I never felt like I got going.

I’m keeping close watch on things now – thinking I probably crossed the line with last week’s training. And staying up till 11 on Monday didn’t help matters.

I wanted to touch upon a comment I got the other day. Sometimes I think these get lost if people don’t go back frequently to check. Anyway, after stating my goal for 2008 someone said;

It's good to have time goals, but don't get too hung up on them. I ran a 2:57 back in 1995, and had visions of a 2:55 or even 2:50, but actually I never broke 3 hours again.

As long as you can leave a race and say "I ran the best I could today", should be enough.

At some point in your running career, you have to realize that your best races are behind you, and you have to find a new reason to run.

I understand what they’re saying. Heck, I’ve been trying to break 2:55 for years now. Although I haven’t been successful, I don’t let it get me down or keep me from trying.

And I have to disagree with saying “I ran the best I could today” being enough. I mean if I run a 3:30 marathon on 30 mpw, should I be happy because it was the best I could do or should I be pissed because I didn’t train as hard as I was capable of training? I suppose "running the best I could on that day, given my training" should be enough.

Of course there’s going to be a point in my running career where all my best races are behind me, but I'd really rather not know when that happens. I think part of what keeps me lacing my shoes each morning throughout the winter is the thought that this could be the year. Sure I haven’t come within two minutes of my 12-year old 10K PR, but maybe, just maybe, this could be the year…

If all else fails, I’ll just take Double’s suggestion and start finding new distances to race.

In the end, I just want to look back without any regrets and say that running has been a great part of this life - no matter how fast I ran or didn't run.

Quote of the day;

“Runners like to train 100 miles per week because it’s a round number. But I think 88 is a lot rounder.” – Don Kardong

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


With all my talk (or writing) about trying to follow-up harder runs with longer runs the following day, it can feel a little disheartening to have thoughts of a 12-14 miler dwindle to only 6 miles last Sunday. However, I have to remind myself that things can work in the other direction too.

Last night I was thinking I’d double back with 8 miles while watching MNF. However, I was feeling so good, I ended up doing a 12 mile progression run at 7:15 pace. Combine that with my easy 8 miles in the morning and I had a 20-mile day.

Thinking back to two years ago when I was doing some high mileage, I can remember thinking that it was more of a mental barrier than a physical barrier. Of course, I probably didn’t maintain the high mileage long enough at the time.

I haven’t mentioned anything about nutrition lately. That’s because I haven’t been paying any attention to it. My new goal is to "save" my family and co-workers from as many calories as possible during the holidays by eating everything in sight. So far it’s working out pretty well. Seriously, when you go from 60 mpw to 90 mpw, you can’t expect to consume the same amonut of calories. Unfortunately, rather than make smart decisions about the extra calories, I just eat anything and everything in sight.

Thanks to Jenna for the heads up on some cool videos of the Gouchers. Jenna wants everyone to know that Adam is getting ART (something she specializes in) done on his ankle – make your appointments today. In episode #4 Kara shows the cover of the first magazine she was ever on – Minnesota Running & Track. She also has a bumper sticker on the wall that says, “I love Duluth.”

Finally, here’s my latest interview with one of Minnesota’s latest Olympic Trials Marathon qualifier.

Quote of the day;

“100-mile weeks were certainly new territory. The biggest week I logged prior to that was 66 miles. I briefly thought about injury, but mostly thought about pushing my body as hard as I could and then resting it so it could recover and rebuild. I was definitely "going for it" but I was also careful.” - Marie Sample

Monday, December 17, 2007


I can still remember reading Lydiard’s schedule for 100 mpw on singles and not seeing any feasible way of making that happen. No matter how I moved the days around or added up the mileage, 100 miles on 7 runs just didn't make logistical sense. While I still haven’t made it happen, I was within spitting distance last week with 95 miles on 7 runs. I should probably put a big asterisk by that week in my logbook because I don’t see a week with runs of 20, 17, 15, and 15 becoming "the norm."

After three Saturdays in a row of 13 miles, I figured I’d end the week with another 12-14 miler and get somewhere between 90-92 miles for the week. I guess I forgot to tell my training partners. We ventured out on routes unknown and I ended up with 17 miles. Best of all, I got to run with Erin and Angie, who are some of the best local gals around, for the first time ever. Hopefully our 7:30 AM start time doesn’t scare them off and they’ll come back.

During the run I encountered one of those be-careful-what-you-wish-for moments as we passed (going the opposite direction – obviously) Carrie Tollefson, Katie McGregor, Emily Brown, and at least one other Team USA Minnesota gal.

Anyway, after my big week I really had no expectations for Sunday’s run. While I’ve been trying to follow-up my stronger-paced Saturday runs with a long run on Sunday, I didn’t think trying to do that yesterday would be wise. And even if I wanted to, I don’t think my body/mind would have let me. As soon as I started running, they immediately began to protest. Thoughts of a 12-14 mile run quickly dropped to 10, then 8 and finally 6 miles. I figure with my body screaming at me for a rest day, I better pay attention to it rather than my logbook.

This morning I ran an easy 8 miles with some strides. With the Vikings playing on Monday Night Football I figure that's a good enough excuse to jump on the treadmill for some type of up-tempo run tonight.

Finally, for those of you with kids that are going through the whole High School Musical phenomenon, I just wanted to let you know that "HSM on ice" is actually really good. As Katie said afterwards; “That was so awesome.”

Quote of the day;

“You have to believe in the training effect, the astonishing physiological principle that says the organism improves in response to stress.” – John Jerome, The Elements of Effort

Friday, December 14, 2007


Another day off (from work), another nice run. On days like this it’s nice to have retired friends. I picked up Eric and we drove to St. Paul to basically run two Get in Gear loops for a total of 11 miles. This is a fairly popular loop, so I usually have high hopes of seeing someone like Katie McGregor out running. No such luck today, instead I had to “settle” for Carrie Tollefson. I know she’s a native Minnesotan, but it’s still nice seeing her out there on a day when temps were in the single digits.

Speaking of Team USA Minnesota, there’s a great article in the latest (January/February) issue of Running Times – well worth the 5 bucks. Thanks to Brian (and Pat and Kim) for pointing it out to me. It’s not on their site yet, but here’s their preview;

Minnesota Nice - A state with an extra-long winter wouldn’t seem to be fertile grounds for national champions and Olympians, but Team USA Minnesota has produced bunches of both. The training philosophy of their coach, Dennis Barker, and how a bunch of dedicated and often chilly runners have proven that sometimes, nice guys (and gals) finish first, too.
I do have a couple of thoughts or questions. The cover shot is an interesting choice; 1) it’s of Jenelle Deatherage who’s no longer on the team and 2) it’s an ass and leg shot. I guess they’re trying to show off her muscular running legs. I’m not objecting, I’m just saying it’s an interesting choice. Also, there’s a team photo on page 40 where they cut off the heads of three guys – even though the photo is obviously big enough.

And while I’m talking about Team USA Minnesota, here’s a link to Emily Brown’s latest journal entry. She does a great job expressing some of the thoughts/questions that all Minnesotan runners ask themselves.

Quote of the day;

“The concept of Minnesota winters strikes fear into many who know of its wrath and thanksgiving in all those who have never had to experience it. In all honesty, it isn’t as horrible as some make it sound.” – Emily Brown

Thursday, December 13, 2007


I think the end of yesterday’s post leads right into today’s post. I find I usually run more during holidays and non-traveling vacations. Since I have vacation to burn before the end of the year, I’m going to be able to take 6 more days off of work in December, including today and tomorrow.

One of my main concerns with the snow and cold weather is that I won’t be able to get in my medium-long run during the week. Well this week I’ve been able to get in TWO medium-long runs.

With the day off, I took advantage by running a nice 15 miler in the sunlight. The first six miles of this run were the worst as four of the first five miles were into a steady wind and the sixth mile was up a big hill. Miles 6 through 8 where at 7:30 pace with a gradual downhill and the wind at my back. Then I ran five miles on the Eagan route that Chris Lundstrom was talking about the other day.

I was starting to drag around mile 12 and could have been happy with calling it a day after 13 miles. However, I figure there are certain points in your training where you have to up the ante a little – today was my day. I added on two loops of the Camp Sacajawea hill that I mentioned earlier this week. I like to affectionately refer to it as “Mt. Sac” in my training log.

Not only did this give me my second 15 miler of the week, along with a 20 miler, it put me at 90 miles for the last 7 days – all in singles. And since that figure ends in a zero, it has to be a milestone. Right? Of course, if I was like Evan and tracked my miles AND my kilometers, I’d still have 5K more to go to get to 150K for the week.

Finally, I’ve been thinking a little about goals for 2008. I’ve been going back and forth on whether or not to post them, or should I say “it”. Having a blog, I guess I should make it public. And since Sara threw her goals out there the other day, I thought I would too.

I’m bypassing 2:55 and going after sub-2:50 instead. I can remember stating 2:55 as a goal before I ever broke 3 hours. Of course that never happened, but maybe I need to aim a little higher in order to have an intermediate breakthrough.

Quote of the day;

“Are you almost done.” – Katie, my daughter, who wants to use the computer now.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


I thought about adding a second run on Monday night, but, quite frankly, I didn’t want to. So instead, I posted this interview and went to bed early. I was “rewarded” with a good night’s sleep and was wide awake 20 minutes before my alarm was set to go off. Rather than just lie there, I got up and ran 15 miles instead of the 12-13 I had planned. The majority of the run followed the MDRA 15K course – all 3 laps.

This morning I ran an easy 11 miles. I don’t know what was going on – it was only 7 or 8 degrees cooler than yesterday – but I had trouble warming up. 40 minutes into my 90-minute run and I still wasn’t warm. After an hour my hands were freezing and the last part of my run was absolutely miserable. All I can think is that my gloves didn’t dry out from the previous day, which is quite likely since they sat in my gym bag all day long. Time to error on the side of having my hands be too hot.

I didn’t mention this when I posted my interview with Barney Klecker, but it’s difficult finding good photos of these guys from the ‘70s. I actually scanned the photo of Barney from a book written by Bruce Brothers – probably highly illegal, but I figure I’m not making any money off the site, so it’s not a big deal. Anyway, I googled the photographer, Scott Schneider, for the heck of it and found his gallery, which has some of the best action photos I’ve seen. I really like the upper left photo of Eddie Holzem as he grabs a cup of water and Gatorade. Then, of course, there’s the intense shot of Carrie, Katie, and Amy. And if I had pipes like Joan Benoit Samuelson, I’d be happy.

Sports Authority has a pretty good commercial running right now. It shows some guy going out for a run on various holidays; New Year’s, Easter, 4th of July, etc. Then at the end it says, “They’re called holidays, not days off.”

Quote of the day;

"There were a lot of guys that I usually beat in races that I couldn’t have kept up with in practice (if they were telling the truth about their workout times). I was consistently a better racer than trainer." - Dennis Barker

Monday, December 10, 2007


I couldn’t make my group run on Saturday, so I took it upon myself to run quicker than normal. Part of my pacing issue is that I don’t have a GPS watch, so most of my runs are not measured, but I do have a couple of loops with some miles marked off. Saturday found me running comfortably at 7:20 pace for 13 miles.

That gave me 71 miles for the week. One of the reasons I like to keep track of my rolling 7-day mileage is that it gives a better view of what’s going on with my “weekly” training, rather than just a single snapshot every Saturday. For example, my last two weeks were 70 and 71 miles. After running in the low 80s for a couple of weeks, it looks like my training had taken a step back. However, my rolling 7-day totals show I was up to 87 miles two weeks ago (before my sore hip) and then down to 55 miles last week. So I really had a peak and a cutback week, rather than two mediocre weeks.

Sunday’s run was dedicated to Evan. Whenever he meets me for a run at Lebanon Hills he’ll mention how great Pilot Knob Road would be for simulating the Boston Marathon course. Since Evan always knows what he’s talking about, I decided to give it a shot. For those familiar with the area, I basically ran north on Pilot Knob from McAndrews, through Eagan and passed Highway 13 into Mendota Heights. That stretch of road is all rolling hills with an overall downward trend. This was an out-and-back course, which means the whole second half trended upwards. Plus, the 3 biggest up hills are during the last 3 miles, so yes, it’s a nice Boston-simulator.

I wanted to get in at least 18 miles, so I ran out for 75 minutes before turning around. As I got close to home I was still feeling good, so I decided to make the run even more Boston-like. Less than half a mile from my house is Camp Sacajawea, which happens to contain a very hilly 1 mile loop. If I run the loop clockwise, there’s a hill that makes Heartbreak Hill look flat. That’s followed by a nice gradual downhill during the second two-thirds of the loop. I added two loops and got in my first 20 miler since August 19th.

I could definitely feel Saturday and Sunday’s run this morning. It was one of those runs where you tell yourself you have time for 8 miles, then you start bargaining with yourself; “I’ll just go 6 today.” Then it’s, “I really only need 5 miles today. I can add a second run tonight.” Luckily I started to feel better after about a mile. I still kept it to 6 miles at a very easy 9+ minute pace. I try and double back this evening.

Here are a couple more journals to check out; Carrie Tollefson and Chris Lundstrom.

Quote of the day;

“I’m still on the comeback trail to getting fit and every week things are getting better. I know I have plenty of time and if I were a coach, I would be fine with where I am. But as the athlete, it is hard to stay calm.” - Carrie Tollefson

Friday, December 07, 2007


Yesterday’s run produced a lot of thoughts, but then I didn’t have any time during the day to write them down. It seems about this time every year I start to question the pacing of my runs. Usually, I’m just concerned with building my mileage, so I don’t worry about pace too much. Most of my getting-in-the-miles pace is probably around 8:00 – 8:30 (on clear roads). Then on Saturday’s my group runs are probably closer to 7:00 – 7:30 pace.

When I check out Thomas’ blog, he’s running similar mileage to me and he’s probably averaging 30 seconds per mile faster than I am. However, his marathon PR is 30-35 seconds per mile slower than mine.

What does it all mean? Is someone right and someone wrong? Would he improve more by slowing down? Would I improve more by speeding up? Are we just different? Or maybe there are just too many other variables that come into play.

I don’t have the answers, just the observations.

I don’t think it’s that I can’t handle the pace, however, I just usually settle into a comfortable pace and just go with it – unless I make a conscious effort to change it. Maybe I need to make that conscious effort. Doesn’t Lydiard say something like you can “get there” with easy aerobic running, but you can get there quicker with stronger paced aerobic runs?

Anyway, I ended up with 11 miles yesterday and followed that up with 10 this morning. I’m not sure why, but 8 degrees this morning felt cold, especially on my hands and face. And get this, I literally had half a mile left this morning and I was thinking about what I should blog about. My cold hands and thicker gloves came to mind and then, seriously, like two minutes later I found these big mittens sitting on the ground. They were frosted over and looked like they’d been there awhile, so I grabbed them. With temps below zero tomorrow morning, they may come in handy.

Linky, linky Friday; Katie McGregor’s updated journal on key aspects of Minnesota. Antonio Vega’s journal talks about running in waist-deep snow. I’m not sure where he’s training – they must have been shoveling it into a pile at the university. Finally, thanks to Eric for this NYT article on disassociation.

Quote of the day;

“He called me at the finish and I told him that I was sorry. Honestly, I was very angry to break Paul’s record. This was not just another record; this was Paul’s record. Paul is not only my rival who pushed me to records and challenged me in championships; he is a good friend.” – Haile Gebrselassie regarding breaking Paul Tergat’s World Record for the marathon

Wednesday, December 05, 2007


Snow during the weekend = good.

Snow during the week, especially during rush hour = bad.

Rather than struggle through another few inches of fresh snow this morning, I just ran on the treadmill. And rather than just slog my way through another easy run, I took the opportunity to run a progression run. I started at 8:30 pace and worked my way down to 6:30 pace. In the end it was a 10 mile run in 75 minutes.

Last night I grabbed Ron Daws’ Self-Made Olympian off the shelf. I jumped to the 'Base Training' chapter and came across this sentence;

Once you hit the target mileage and can hold it fairly comfortably week after week, then begin to vary the efforts and make wider variations in daily mileage.
He goes on to tell the story of when Ron Clarke trained under Arthur Lydiard. Clarke and two other runners would do their long runs at 7:00 pace. Eventually, their maximal aerobic pace increased, so 7:00 pace was too easy. Clarke started going faster, but the other two runners stayed at the same pace. The racing standards of all three improved for awhile but Clarke’s improvement continued.

So I think that’s where I’m at. I’m able to handle 80-85 mpw fairly comfortably when I run the majority of my miles at 8:00-8:30 pace. I think I’ve gained enough fitness in the last 8 weeks to be able to drop the pace.

Daws also has a chapter called 'The Schedule' and in it the second paragraph says;

Suppose that it is the beginning of December, and you decide to prepare for a major effort at the Boston Marathon the next year. This means you have roughly 19 weeks to get ready.
You can bet I perked up a little bit when I read that. And sure enough, I looked at the calendar and next week we’ll be 19 weeks from Boston. Later in the book he spells out exactly what Steve Hoag’s training was like prior to his 2:11:54 at Boston in 1975. Heck, the race day is even the same in 2008 as it was in 1975, April 21st. Not that I’d be able to follow Hoag’s plan, but it’s nice to have as an outline.

Quote of the day;

“I can’t tell you in a book how to be sure you are going fast enough without overdoing it. You must learn by trial and error. But if you err too far, you may have to wait until another season to put to work what you have learned.” – Ron Daws, Self-Made Olympian

Tuesday, December 04, 2007


I’ll say it’s kind of nice having a cutback week coincide with our first significant snowfall. I don’t mind the snow, but it’s kind of like when I first start base-building – it takes few days to wrap my head around it. Yesterday’s run was tough, mentally – today’s was much better.

One of the problems with the snow is that all the paved trails in Hyland Park are not plowed. So rather then being able to run a longer loop through the park, I basically have to run out-and-back. And even that is shorter than “normal” so I have to add on here and there. I don’t know what it is about adding on, but it’s a mental drain. I’d rather just run a 10-mile loop than 9 miles with a make-shift mile added on at the end.

Anyway, I made it 11 miles this morning. Technically I’m still on my cutback week -tomorrow will be my last day. Instead of running 15 miles I’ll run about 12 miles, which will bring my rolling 7-day total to 57 miles.

Last Friday I went to a party for a bunch of my former co-workers. My former VP is a runner (I’m still convinced that’s why I was hired) and after talking with him I came up with a new life-goal; to run more miles per week than hours I work per week. So if I work 40 hpw, I should run 40+ mpw. Granted, he’s a VP and I’m an analyst, but he was talking about working 50-70 hpw. No thanks.

Quote of the day;

“Last year my problem in Berlin was with the last part of the race, I decided to run only endurance and I stopped running speedwork completely. Since last year I was just focused on endurance, three hours, three-and-a-half-hour long runs.” – Haile Gebrselassi after his 2:04:26 WR in Berlin this year

Monday, December 03, 2007


It’s been a few days since my last post and I’m happy to say my hip is feeling “normal.” My last 2-3 “injuries” I’ve been able to get in and see Jenna right away and bounce back with only a day or two off. Either I’m a super fast healer or she knows what she’s doing. Given that I’m 38 years old, I’m betting on the latter. Of course, I can’t be going to her office every time there’s an ache or pain – there has to be some kind of self monitoring in-place along the way to know the difference between an ache and a potential injury.

I saw Jenna on Friday morning and that afternoon I ran 5 miles from work to test things out. Before heading out the door, a bunch of my co-workers were telling me how cold it was outside. Here’s my advice, if you don’t run in the cold, don’t tell those of us that do, how cold it is. Seriously, it was 17 degrees above – within 10 minutes I was trying to cool down because I overdressed after listening to everyone.

That run ended my month of November with 302 miles. My previous high for November was 290 miles from last year. Maybe even more impressive is that I did this on 28 runs (3 days off and 1 double). I’ve never averaged more than 10 miles per run for that length of time. I’ve run more miles in a month, but that has required 35-40 runs.

Saturday I had a nice group run which followed the same route as the previous Saturday; Fort Snelling and Pike Island. Best of all we (mostly) finished before getting about 6 inches of new snow. This run gave me 70 miles for the week on 7 runs.

While I like the snow, it usually throws a wrench into the running plans for a day or two as I wait for sidewalks and paths to get plowed. Rather than stumble around yesterday, I jumped on the treadmill for 8 miles during the Viking’s game. This morning I just ran multiple laps around Normandale Lake for 8 miles, but I did include some 30 second strides. Usually I don’t do them once the snow falls, but this year I’m going to try to do them once a week.

Finally, here’s my latest interview - this one of Minnesota legend, Barney Klecker. And speaking of interviewees, congrats to Nicole (2:42) and Marie Sample (2:46) for their races at the Cal International Marathon where they punched their tickets to Boston in April for the Olympic Marathon Trials. By the way, Nicole’s time was about a 10-minute PR. Congrats also go out to Jim and Kelly for running 1:14 and 1:21, respectively, at the Tucson Half Marathon. I believe that’s a PR for Jim.

Quote of the day;

“I kind of draw the line at 2:20. If they didn’t run faster than that, I didn’t think they were really a serious marathoner. They certainly weren’t someone I’d fear in a race.” - Barney Klecker