Monday, October 22, 2007

The good news: I ran twice this weekend and my achilles feels fine.

The bad news: my legs are sore from my runs.

Taking off nearly 2 weeks from running appears to have done the trick as far as my aching achilles tendon goes. No soreness. But the break from running didn't go unnoticed by my quads.

Admittedly, I was a bit too excited about hitting the road again, and I stretched what was supposed to be a short 3 mile jog into an 8.5 mile run with some decent hills. I was stiff the next morning and took it a lot easier on a 4 mile run around the neighborhood.

So the next few weeks will involve lots of stretching and more running to get the legs ready for 12-hours of fun at the Ultracentric.

I.I.T.S., my friends.

On a different note, here's what one of those internet quizzes says about me:

You Are An ENTJ

The Executive

You are a natural leader - with confidence and strength that inspires others.
Driven to succeed, you are always looking for ways to gain, power, knowledge, and expertise.
Sometimes you aren't the most considerate person, especially to those who are a bit slow.
You are not easily intimidated - and you have a commanding, awe-inspiring presence.

In love, you hold high standards... for yourself, for your relationship, and for your significant other.
While it's easy for you to impress others, it's hard for you to find someone who impresses you.

At work, you are organized and good at delegating. You understand how to achieve goals.
You would make a great CEO, entrepreneur, or consultant.

How you see yourself: Rational, calm, and objective

When other people don't get you, they see you as: Inflexible, controlling, and overbearing

Thursday, October 18, 2007

It's amazing what a smile can do.

My early fatherhood funk has faded. Ezra James and I are smiling and playing and singing. Life is good.

Also, my achilles tendon is feeling much better. I'm probably 90%-95% back to normal. I still haven't run in over a week, but I've been hitting the gym hard on cardio, and I even took the bike out last Sunday for a 20 mile ride. I'm going for an easy 4-6 mile run on Saturday. Very easy.

Friday, October 12, 2007

"Thinking that carbs make you fat is wrong," says CHRIS CARMICHAEL, founder and head coach of Carmichael Training Systems. "You're fat because you're not exercising. To simply blame a food type for being fat is bullshit."

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

After the debacle in Chicago last weekend, is the future of the mega-marathon in jeopardy? Probably not. But should it be? 45,000 runners is insane. Absolutely, utterly insane. Complaints about the heat aside—and while hot and humid, it wasn’t that hot and humid (especially compared to the 26+ mile training runs I’ve been logging in the Texas heat this summer)—45,000 runners is just too many. Way too many. It sounds miserable. I can’t imagine what the starting line was like in Chicago. Just lining up the runners must be a gargantuan chore.

I’ve run some big marathons (e.g., NYC, Marine Corps, San Francisco), but nothing on the scale of the Chicago Marathon. And even in those big marathons, the RDs adopted wave starts, which helped alleviate the early congestion. (San Francisco in particular did a fantastic job with numerous wave starts based on predicted finish times.)

Personally, my interests are shifting further from the big-city marathons to smaller, more intimate events. My two favorite races of the past year were the Waco 5-0 and the Andy Payne Memorial Marathon—both of which had less than 100 runners going the distance.

Speaking of smaller events, I wonder how many folks will be at my next run, the Ultracentric. (The Ultracentric is a timed-event around a 2.4 mile loop course. I will be going for 12 hours, trying to get at least 50 miles in the time.)

My training for the Ultracentric was great, consisting of several marathon distance runs around west Fort Worth in the early morning hours.

Until last week.

On Saturday morning, I started out a little before 6 a.m. from the house, but after only a few miles, I began to notice a slight discomfort in my left Achilles tendon. I stopped, walked a bit, did some stretches, and then resumed running. Same issue, but now it was moving from discomfort to mild paid. Damn. After 7 miles, I decided it was best to call it a day. I walked back home, hoping that it was only temporary.

But when I went for a 4 mile run yesterday, the pain lingered. Not too bad, but enough to cause concern.

I’m 5 weeks from the Ultracentric, and I’m taking the next week and a half off from all running. I’ll bike and lift weights, but that’s it. Hopefully, the Achilles will heal and all will be fine for the run in mid-November. It’s not too painful, and based on my Internet research, whatever mild damage may have occurred should work itself out soon.

Keep your fingers crossed, folks.

Friday, October 05, 2007

After work, I relived a bit of El Scorcho, running 2 laps around the 5 km course. It was warm and humid, but an enjoyable run at a decent pace (8:30 per mile).

Tomorrow morning, I've got a 28 mile training run scheduled. Ultracentric looms closer on the calendar, and I'm almost to the peak of the training schedule. The taper will be nice.

Oh, and on a non-running related note, I predict a Texas win tomorrow over Oklahoma in the Red River Rivalry. My theory: everyone (and I mean everyone) is picking Texas to lose--and lose big--so OU will be overconfident, Texas will be out to prove something, and the stars will align for a Longhorn upset. That's all I've got.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Before Ezra was born, people used to tell me all the time, "you're going to love being a dad."

They must have been referring to later in the child's life.

Ezra is difficult. Right now, my son is only a month old. He doesn't smile, he can't focus or look me in the eyes, and the only comfort he appears to exhibit is when eating or sleeping. He cries, he doesn't sleep at opportune times, he is often inconsolable. Being a dad is hard. It is frustrating. It is full of repeated feelings of ineffectualness.

I am told I will look back on these times in Ezra's life with fondness.

I doubt it.

At this point, I'm looking forward to a couple months from now, when (according to the many baby books and websites I have perused as of late) Ezra will begin to interact in a more positive fashion. Perhaps then my frustration will be tempered with a bit more joy.

Until then, I do my best to hug and kiss and sing to my son. I feed him when he's hungry and bathe him when he's dirty and change his diapers when he... well, you know....

I do love the little guy a lot. That's what keeps me going. That and my wife, who I love more than ever and who continually amazes me.


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