Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Monday, August 31, 2015

Record Breaking Barefoot Month! - 370 Miles

Hello Barefooters,

Celebrating My New Weekly (and Monthly) High Totals
I hope everyone is enjoying the end to their summer.  This is a great time of year to get in some good high mileage.  The feet are "peaking" after a long summer of barefoot runs and it becomes easier and easier to "extend" each run just a few miles to get the mileage totals higher.  After just setting my monthly high last month (in July, 333 miles) I really didn't think I would be setting it again so soon. 

What I was attempting to do was to set my highest mileage week of the year (not all time) in the 2nd week of August.  I was looking at running about a 90 mile week when my Thursday run went horribly wrong.  As I was finishing up what I thought would be a 16 miler, I pulled my left groin muscle coming up a big hill on Hinkle Road (my normal daily route).  As soon as it happened (about 8 miles in) I turned back for home.  After the initial twinge it was painful the entire mile or so back to the house, but I did continue running.  I prayed for healing and took it easy the next couple of days, with a 1 miler on Friday and a 6 miler on Saturday.  Obviously my 90 mile week was shot but I was still happy to get in a 64 mile week...and this would turn out to be my SHORTEST week of the month!

After taking Sunday off (as always) I started the next week on Monday with a 18.3 miler just to give the groin muscle a good test.  I had been healed!  There is no other explanation!  I continued running 18.33 miles each day that week...but always took it one day at a time.  I knew this could be a record breaking week, but I wanted to make sure I was "listening to my body" and evaluated carefully each day whether I could continue the high miles.  Again on Thursday, believe it or not, same leg...the left hamstring began to tighten in the last 2 miles.  I thought, oh boy, here it comes again.  I again prayed for healing and on Friday the hamstring not only held together, but I ran the miles about 30 seconds faster each!  This again made me realize this was a healing from God and not just a normal recovery.  These type of injuries (groin or hamstring) would have laid me up for multiple weeks in the past.  Now I was back to high mileage within 1 or 2 days of the injuries and feeling better than ever!

That third week of August turned out to be my record breaker, 111.11 miles, which beat my old weekly record of 102 from last August.  The week was basically a series of consistent 18.33 mile days, Monday through Friday, with a "push" on Saturday of 19.39 miles to ""round out" the total with a .11 on the end!  I was actually finding it hard to believe I was doing it at the time and was afraid it could all fall apart at any point during the week.  While I could have simply sat back and taken it easy for the rest of the month, I started looking at the high totals and realized that the impossible monthly record set just last month was now very "beatable" with only 12-13 mile days for the rest of the month...believe it or not, that sounded easy at the time since I had just finished a solid week of 18 mile days!

I had to travel to Michigan for work the last week of August but was able to still string together 14 and 16 mile days away from my normal course in Indiana.  The Michigan miles are somewhat difficult since I have to run on the I-275 Metro Trail at the beginning and end of the run while connecting with some nice "smooth" parking lots at Mahle and Cooper Standard in Farmington Hills.  After piling up miles for the past 60 days, I think I may actually be wearing down the pad on the ball of my right foot as you can see in the picture.

Concrete in Michigan Wearing My Foot Thin!
This has happened before and usually takes some time to recover.  The picture was taken on Friday August 28 after the 16 miler and I had already actually broken the July record by a few miles...still had Saturday and Monday to "pad" the record if the feet could just hold up!...Well they did and I finished the month of August with a new high total of 370.05 miles.  With the shorter days, I am now running approximately 75% of the time in the dark (am) with a headlamp...but the good part is that it's the coolest time of day (and least traffic). 

I definitely feel blessed to be able to log these kind of mileages and am still in awe of the body God gave me.  He continues to bless and heal me at just the right time, allowing me to extend my miles way beyond what I would have thought possible last year...or last month...or even last week!  Praise God!

Enjoy your ever shortening late summer days,

Barefoot Dan

August Mileage = 370.05 miles
New Monthly Record, with or without shoes

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