Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Out Like a Lamb...

Happy Easter Barefooters,
March turned out to have a few weather challenges but overall was a great month with some high running totals -- over 100 miles for the month which puts me well on my way to a 1000 mile year.  The month started with the Amboy 5K Race in Amboy IN.  This was a great little Sat. morning race and I brought along my 12 year old daughter Megan to challenge the out - and - back course.  What I didn't remember (from my shod days) was how ROUGH the middle mile of the course is...sort of Chip and Seal on steroids which made for a slow and painful middle mile of the race.  But hey, it was a BPR (that's Barefoot Personal Record!) at 25:17 or an 8:09 pace overall.  This was good enough for 2nd in my age group (Male 45-49).  After finishing I ran back to cheer on Megan and ran the last half mile in with her as she captured 1st in her age group (Female 14 and under)!  
It's always nice to bring home hardware!
Megan got a BIGGER trophy!
Afterwards we enjoyed the post race pancake breakfast (the best part of Amboy!) and chatted with other Kokomo Road Runners as the awards were handed out.  It was great to share this experience with my daughter and also break the 5K BPR I had just set back in January on the trail run (Night Flight 5K).  As the month progressed we had a couple more snows but God always provided enough sunny and dry days in between that I was still able to get in several good training sessions.  I was able to run 4 or 5 days each week in March even though a few runs were on wet pavement.  On March 5th, I completed my longest run of the year so far at just over 11miles, followed by a couple of 8 mile runs later in the month. 
I finished out the month with yet another BPR at the Westfield Underground RR 5K on March 23rd.  This race commemorates the fact that Westfield IN was once a stop on the infamous Underground RR network back in the days of the civil war.  This race is run on city streets with about 3/4 mile on the trail in Asa Bales Park near the end.  While there were a couple of rough patches, this course is much smoother than the Amboy course and as a result much faster for us barefooters.  I started near the back of the pack (maybe too far back!) but enjoy passing the other runners early on, and actually continued to pass runners the entire way.  The last quarter mile or so was very interesting as I passed one individual who turned out to be a podiatrist.  He kept surging and trying to re-pass me as we neared the tape but I had plenty left in the tank and kept turning it on to fend him off.  Afterwards we laughed about it and he told me he just HAD to pass me since he was a podiatrist and I was barefoot!  I thanked him for speeding me up...turns out (according to my Garmin) that I ran the last 0.1 mile at a pace of 5:26min/mile! 
Overall, this was again a BPR of 23:40 at a 7:38 Pace which was good enough for 64th out of 429 participants and 4th in my age group.  Since they only went 3 deep in the trophies I finished just out of the hardware, although the runner just ahead (my friend Bill Kirsch) and just behind (my new podiatrist friend Dave) both recieved hardware in their age groups!
After another nice snowstorm (10.5 inches!) and some sunny days immediately after, I got in several nice long runs for the week, just in time to head south for Spring Break with the family.  This year's plan has us stopping in Maggie Valley NC to visit my pastor friend Laura Jones and then heading over to my sister Jill's house in North Myrtle Beach.  Hopefully the weather will continue to improve and we'll get in some beach time with the kids.  And hopefully a few early morning runs on the beach which will be a big change from the Indiana snow!

Enjoy the warmer Spring temps!

Barefoot Dan

March Mileage = 106 (New Monthly Barefoot High Total)

Week 1 (partial)= 4, Week 2 = 35, Week 3 = 21, Week 4 = 20, Week 5 = 26

Friday, March 1, 2013

In Search of a Dry Road

Good Morning Barefooters,
February is in the books, and looking back over the month it was remarkably consistent.  Even though we had our share of snow, ice and rain during the month, God still provided a few dry days in between to help get in the longer runs needed to keep up the mileage.  I have had sort of an undeclared goal of trying to acheive 1000 Barefoot Miles in 2013.  For those mileage hounds out there, you know that getting to 1000 miles for the year, requires over 19 miles per week.  Since I always take Sundays off, this leaves only 6 days a week to squeeze in those 19 miles.  Either 3+ miles per day or 3 days of 6+ with a day off in between.  That is a pretty agressive schedule when you start to add in snow days.  Last year it would have been easy since the weather was so mild, but this year we were lucky to get 2 "dry" days per week.  So this requires keeping the mileage low enough on the "wet" days to not due damage to the feet and high enough on "dry" days to keep the weekly average going.
Of course the other factor with Indiana roads in the winter is all the salt and calcium chloride put on the roads to keep them clear.  Remember, salt is basically MEAT TENDERIZER so when you couple that with wet roads the feet can't do super high mileage, at least not multiple days in a row.  So it was challenging this month to watch the weather forecast and take advantage of the dry day that typically precedes the next big storm, knowing that I would have a low (or zero) mileage day following the storm.

Longest Run of the Year (so far...)
 The temperature cooperated as well and I was able to keep most of my runs in the 20s or 30s.  However, my first run of the month was also my coldest barefoot run ever on Feb. 1 at 5 degrees!  This was of course a "dry" 5 degrees, but nevertheless, a very short run of 0.41 miles, hardly worth logging!  This was my shortest run of the month while this past Tuesday allowed for my longest run of the month (and year!) at 9.62 miles.  This was a beautiful sunny day with a temp of 34 degrees and little or no wind.  I didn't actually set out to go that far but when I got to the 4th mile of my planned 6 mile run, the road back home was closed due to power line work.  So I decided rather than back tracking I would just make my loop bigger.  I turned and went down Little Chicago Road to Highway 38 and then back home.
You can see my Garmin download of the run here.  I enjoyed the smooth surface of Little Chicago and once I got to Hwy 38 I pretty much stayed on the white line which was smooth as well.  Of course the issue with both of these roads is high traffic and requires a constant watch ahead for cars.  When they don't get over, you need to be ready to dive into the weeds or the rocky edge of the road.  Most of the drivers in the area are very considerate of runners and either slow or make way as they approach.  I usually try to wear either my orange gloves or my neon green sock cap to make myself as visible as possible.
Well, the mileage is listed below, and as you can see I got in at least 3 "above average" weeks in February.  I will need to continue this trend if I'm going to make up for the 2 weeks down time from January.  Looking forward to some Spring racing, maybe including the Amboy 5K (and pancake breakfast!) this Saturday (tomorrow) if the weather cooperates.

Enjoy the rest of your winter and STAY SAFE!

Barefoot Dan

February Mileage = 81 Miles

Week 1 = 1, Week 2 = 20, Week 3 = 25, Week 4 = 20, Week 5 = 16 (weeks 1 and 5 partial)