Weekly Recap

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The summer heat has come to Memphis with a vengeance this week, and my runs have reflected it.  Even waking up at the crack of dawn has not provided much relief from the high temps and crippling humidity.

Monday: Rest/recovery day since I ran my long distance on Sunday rather than Saturday last week.

Tuesday: I ran 4.5 miles on the treadmill at the gym since I missed my early morning run window by helping Susan in her classroom.  I hung letters, moved boxes, and kept her on task most of the day and we actually accomplished quite a bit.  I considered the hours of activity there a part of my weekly training.

Wednesday: I did my first TRX workout since I was on vacation during the first week of June!  I did a whole body routine for about 40 minutes.  I hurt afterwards, but it was definitely a good hurt.  I was happy to finally return to TRX.  I wish my new gym offered free TRX classes like my old one did.  That once a week in class helped me stay on task.  I have to get more diligent with my cross-training again.

Thursday: Another 4 miles on the treadmill at the gym.  This was my first run with a podcast, and I actually enjoyed the change of pace from music.  I listened to the Atlanta Braves Talk Podcast, and being a Braves dork, I really enjoyed it.

Friday: I ran the latest that I ever have during my young running career.  I did not hit the streets until after 9 pm, and did not return home until 10pm!  This was by far my best run of the week despite the darkness and more blisters from my new shoes.  I tried the Let’s Run Disney Podcast and loved information the podcast provided for my future runDisney adventure.

Saturday: Easy day since my weekly long run was looming.  I did some planks, situps, and pushups during the early afternoon, but not much else.  I went to dinner with my in-laws at one of their friends’ house.  We had BBQ ribs, pork shoulder, and all of the fixings.  We also had homemade ice cream and chocolate cobbler.  The food was excellent, but was not the best meal to eat the night before a long run.  The Irish whiskey was also not the wisest of choices, but I did enjoy it.

Sunday: I woke up at the crack of dawn and ran 10 miles this morning.  It was 10 humid and slow miles, but it was still 10 miles.  I am going to try out a foam roller for the first time ever later on this evening.  I am very eager to see how it goes tonight.  From everything that I have heard or read, a foam roller can only help with my running aspirations.

I was styling w/ this!

I was styling w/ this!

I also tried out KT tap for the first time this week. My left foot was a little sore, so I put on the KT Tape Pro as if I was about to have another struggle with peroneal tendinitis.  The tape worked like a charm and once it was on, I never noticed it again.  The instructions were very easy to understand, and I did notice some pain relief.  I am intrigued enough at this point to buy a roll for myself to tryout.

Boston Remembrance Medal

Boston Remembrance Medal

I also finally got my Boston Remembrance Run medal on Saturday.  It was been over a month since the event, and I was getting a little antsy about getting the medal.  The event was a virtual marathon in which you could split the miles over the course of an entire week.  I split up the miles and ended up in the middle of the four hour block.  I was pleased, especially when I thought that this time would marvelous to duplicate at the WDW Marathon!  The people that put on the event were for helpful, but they did not know what to expect with the volume of this race and engraving process of the medals  Better late than never, and I am still waiting for my socks from the event.

Mid-Week Review

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Back in March, I did a post about the Alter Ego line of clothing from Under Armour.  You can have a refresher here, or the Cliff Notes version is the line is workout clothing inspired by superheroes.  The nerd in me was very excited about these shirts, but being of the larger persuasion and these shirts being base layer compression shirts, it did not look like I was going to get one.  Well, a random trip to the local Dick’s Sporting Goods changed that for me.  I was shopping with Susan and Dick’s was next door so I hopped in for a second.  And as I walked in, I noticed the Alter Ego display.  I stopped to look for a second and noticed two things.  One was that the compression shirts are tiny.  I seriously though I was in the children’s section!  Also, I saw a Batman shirt that said that said “loose fit” on it!  This could not be right, and I had to double check the tag.  Yep, “loose fit” just like my other Under Amour shirts!  I decided to try the shirt on, just in case, and it was a perfect fit!  So I now own a Batman Under Armour shirt!  I am such a nerd.  Maybe they will release the other superheroes in the “loose fit” as well.

Batman Under Armour

Batman Under Armour

Last week I bought my first pair of shoes from Kindrunner and the experience was very simple.  Today I am returning a pair of old shoes that will become $10 in Kindness Cash.  It is kind of a bittersweet moment since the shoes that I am returning are the ones I ran my first half marathon in.  But I cannot wear the shoes anymore and someone needs to get some use out of them, so sending them to Soles 4 Souls in a positive outcome for these shoes.  It is ironic that these shoes that I randomly bought with no knowledge of my gait, running mechanics, or shoe life held up for over a year and 700 plus miles without incident.  And now that I know this stuff, I have had some injury issues with shoes closely fitted for my feet with very strict mile management.  It is funny how that happens.

Kindrunner donation

Kindrunner donation

And speaking of my new shoes from Kindrunner, I made a rookie mistake over the weekend.  I was so eager to wear my new shoes that I did not properly break them in before taking them out for a long run.  I ran ten plus miles on the Greenline last Sunday and this run resulted in blisters on both of my big toes!  Thankfully these blisters were not a lingering issue this week.

I am also going to be trying something new with my runs and workouts over the next few weeks.  I almost exclusively listen to music on my runs, so I am exploring some podcasts to listen to, as well as an audiobook to utilize during my runs.  I will also try to watch some Braves games on the treadmill at the gym when the opportunity presents itself.  Last night was my first run listening to a podcast and it went well.  I had no problems staying motivated on the run, and it provided the distraction that I sometimes need on my runs.  I am still browsing audiobooks and honestly did not realize how expensive that they are.  I read several non-fiction books, and I am a little wary of running to an audiobook of a non-fiction book.  We shall see.

Today is the longest sports day of the year since it is the only day of the year that there are no activities from any of the major four American sports leagues.  What sets today apart from the past two days is that Monday has the Home Run Derby and Tuesday has the MLB All Star Game.  Even worse for Atlanta Braves fans is the fact that the team is also off tomorrow, so there is a four day sports void for us.  ESPN puts their annual sports awards show, The ESPY Awards, on Wednesday to help fill the void, but no one really cares about that.  The USA and Costa Rica game that was played last night would have been perfect in prime time tonight.

Update: I just read an article on Deadspin talking about the ESPYs, the hatred for the event, and the colossal waste of money the awards show really is.  You can read the article for yourself here.

Motivation Monday

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I know that I have posted a lot today, but I wanted to share a couple more things.  I was browsing the internet for something to post for Motivation Monday and my landing on the webpage for Saucony.  It was on the Saucony site that I find the image that I will be using today as well as a cool little product that Saucony has for pre-order with 100% of the sale being donated to The One Fund Boston.  I also found this amazing blog post about running a marathon.  If it were on WP, I would just reblog it.  Now, let’s look at the motivation.  This image is rather self explanatory and goes off of the #findyourstrong movement that Saucony has going on right now.

#findyourstrong

#findyourstrong

The second item I found was a cheap way to carry some Boston inspiration with you as well as donate a little money to The One Boston Fund.  Saucony is selling a #BostonStrong Lace Medallion to wear on your running shoes.  This is a great way to remember those in Boston on any run that you may go on, and at a very nominal fee of $5.00.  And 100% of the sale will be donated to The One Boston Fund.  The items are on a pre-sale status and you will get them as soon as they are available, which is being advertised as four weeks.  Also, if you have converted to Lock Laces, you can still wear this medallion, but it might be a little loose.  And if you are interested in trying Lock Laces, go to their website, buy a pair, use the promo code KYLEJUDE to get free shipping and 20% of that sale will go directly to St. Jude (shameless plug).

#BostonStrong Lace Medallions

#BostonStrong Lace Medallions

Here is a quick gym update for the day.  A couple of months ago when I was joining my new gym, I remarked that the new gym was just a sh0rt run from my house once I was healthy.  Well, I have been running for a few weeks now, but I have only ran to the gym once.  And today, I decided to run there again.  Round trip, my run was 4.17 miles today, and did the miles at a 9:53 pace.  In the middle of the four plus running miles, I did a twenty minute dumbbell lifting set focusing primarily on my upper body.  I did all of my stretching once I got home and felt great.  Maybe I will make this my Monday routine.  We shall see.  But if I do, I need to make sure that I bring a sweat rag because the last few times that I have gone to the gym, they have had no towels available.

Warrior Wednesday

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Just three days until the Warrior Dash in Jackson, MS, and if I’m not ready physically by now, I never will be.  Preparing for a race is much like a test, you are either ready or you are not, cramming is virtually useless.  But on the same token, I can’t just ignore my workouts for the week leading up to a race.  This is my first obstacle/mud run, so I am 100% certain how to properly prepare the week of the race.  If this were a half marathon or such, I would have my normal taper schedule.

Today’s workout was a run, some weight lifting, and some more running.  My new gym is roughly two miles from the house, so I ran there, did a modified Warrior Dash circuit, and then ran home.  The combined four miles is the longest that I have been able to run in six weeks, and while I was a little slow, it still felt good.  The circuit was two sets of ten exercises, with alternating :30 of lifting, :30 of rest, and a one minute break between the two sets.  The following is what the sets looked like:

  • DB Bench Press
  • DB Bicep Curls
  • Leg Press
  • Chair Dips
  • Leg Extensions
  • DB Lateral Raises
  • Leg Curls
  • DB Front Raises
  • DB Butterflies
  • Side Crunches

The workout felt great, and I only had mild soreness in my foot during it, so that is a positive.  The only real downside was the weird looks I got walking into the gym after a two mile run in 85 degree heat with 100% humidity.  And by downside, I mean for the other patrons, not me.

Course for Saturday

Course for Saturday

The above picture is the course that I will be running on Saturday morning.  The distance is 3.34 miles with twelve obstacles.  And from the looks of it, they are incorporating some of their obstacles from their new Iron Warrior circuit as well as their traditional obstacles.  I am not going to get into much of a break down of the obstacles tonight, but rather wait until I experience them first hand.  I probably will not have a camera to capture photographic evidence of each one, but I’ll do my best to be descriptive.

I have two more sponsors for the Platinum Sombrero 5K that I will be writing about tomorrow.

End of Week Update

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This has been a busy week and I haven’t had a chance to update the blog very much, so this will serve has a good catch up on what has happened this week.

This is the week that I have finally been cleared to begin running again, albeit not at full speed yet.  Tuesday I jogged lightly on the treadmill for a mile pain free.  My doctor was rather emphatic that I needed to take it slow, and advised that as I begin running again, I should add speed or distance to each run, but not both at the same time.  This being said, I ran the same speed for two miles on Wednesday, and it was still pain free, so that was very positive.  I didn’t run Thursday or Friday, and yesterday I ran on the streets for the first time in over a month. I finished two and a half miles at a 10:40 pace, which is slower than I was before my injury, but was a little aggressive for my rehab.  I only felt a slight twinge of pain while stretching after my run, but it did not last long.  I am going to run at about the same speed again today for hopefully a 5K distance so maybe I can gauge where I am at physically.  If today goes well, I am going to register for the FedEx St. Jude Classic Fairway 5K next Saturday.  I will not be pushing for a PR, but getting out there for a race where I can actually run/jog will feel good.

In case you missed it earlier this week, I have officially registered for my first full marathon this week.  I will be attempting the Walt Disney World Marathon on January 12, 2014.

Yesterday, Susan, my in-laws, her sister, Nannie, and her sister’s friend met at Local on the Square for lunch.  We got there earlier enough to enjoy the brunch menu, so I took the opportunity to enjoy their take on chicken and waffles.  It was a pecan crusted spicy chicken with a sweet potato waffle, topped with blueberries and a blueberry, bourbon, and red chili syrup.  It was an outstanding dish, and despite it being a filling meal, I wanted another order because it was so good.  It was a great compliment to the homemade Bloody Mary that I had with the meal.  The last time I went to Local I had the John Hughes Club, which consisted of a fried egg, bacon, cheddar, tomato jam, avocado, and chipotle aioli on toasted brioche, which was another strong meal.

Local's take on chicken & waffles is very tasty

Local’s take on chicken & waffles is very tasty

In last night’s Braves game, something happened that has never happened in MLB before.  Going into the ninth inning, the Braves trailed the Cubs 5-4 with the top of the order coming up.  Enter Chicago’s shaky closer (well, not anymore…) Carlos Marmol.  The first batter he faces was BJ Upton, and when given a fastball down the middle on a 3-1 count, he did not miss it.  BJ drilled the game-tying homerun to dead center and Turner Field was rocking.  After a Jason Heyward flyout to left, Justin Upton, BJ’s younger brother strolled to the plate.  And on a 1-2 count, Justin crushed a fastball to center for a walkoff homerun!  At this point, Turner Field was shaky so much that it was registering on the Richter Scale!  Last night marked the first time in MLB history that brothers homered to tie and then win a game in the same inning.  And this was just the fifth time in MLB history that brothers have ever homered in the same inning.  Also, this is the first time brothers homered in the same game with one being a walkoff since 1962 when for the Milwaukee Braves, Tommie Aaron homered and then later Hank Aaron hit a grand slam to win the game.  It was quite an exciting moment, and hopefully a sign of things to come.

Post game celebration for the Uptons

Post game celebration for the Uptons

Both Final Four games were fantastic yesterday, but unfortunately, as has happened all year, the officiating was the story.  Poor Wichita State’s upset bid was derailed by a very questionable jump ball call and Syracuse’s comeback bid was halted by a controversial charge/block call.  All in all, the best two teams did win, but you hate to have a call to point to that potentially cost you a national title.

I’m still liking the new gym, but I am having trouble adjusting to the new schedule that the gym requires due to the heavy influx of people directly after work.  Once I am back on my 100% running schedule, I’m sure this won’t be as glaring.  And since the pool will be closed this week, being able to begin my running program this week has been very important.

Weekly Gym Update

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So it has been awhile since I updated about my training efforts while injured, so I thought I would give a quick update of what I’m trying to do to stay fit while not running.

  • Last Saturday: First official day at the new gym and I swam 34 laps (25 yards each)
  • Sunday: Walked the Germantown Mayor’s 5K in my walking boot.
  • Monday: Upper body dumbbell routine. Two sets of ten exercises using my warrior circuit timing (:30 exercise, :30 rest).
  • Tuesday: Swam 34 laps.
  • Wednesday: Swam 34 laps.
  • Thursday: Rest day to watch basketball. Go Tigers!
  • Friday: Swam 35 laps.
  • Yesterday: Unintentional rest day. The Tigers played (not well) at 1:45 CT and I slept in a little longer than I anticipated. And I have no real excuse for not going after the game in the roughly two hour window that I had.
  • Today: I wanted to swim and then lift a little, but the pool was crazy busy so I rode the bike for twenty minutes and then did two circuits of twelve reps per each upper body machine.

I need to get a constant routine going again, as well as focusing on what I eat a little closer moving forward. I may try to do two a days a couple times this week by swimming in the morning and completing a warrior circuit in the evening. We shall see if I can get out of bed to do this. And of course, watching basketball all night is not going to help me with this goal, especially when the life of my bracket hinges on this Miami – Illinois game. Also, once this game concludes, I must watch the second to last episode of the season of The Walking Dead.

I go back to the doctor on Tuesday, so maybe I can get some good news, ditch the boot, and get back to running. We shall see, and I am definitely not going to push it further than I should.

Congratulations to the Memphis Grizzlies for clinching a playoff spot today thanks to the loss by the Utah Jazz!

New Gym

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I made a major training decision this weekend by joining a new gym.  Susan decided last week that she wanted to focus on getting into better shape and going to the gym.  My old gym, Inside Out Gym, is roughly a twenty minute drive from the house, and that was not conducive to Susan staying dedicated to going to the gym.  She wanted a gym that was closer to the house so she could go before work and return home to shower and get ready for work.  Susan knows that going to the gym prior to work is her best option to staying dedicated to going to the gym and eliminates that “I’m too tired” excuse several of us use to avoid going to the gym after work.  Susan and I decided on the Ric Nuber YMCA in East Memphis after touring the facility on Thursday and working out there on Saturday.  The following is my list of pros and cons for our new gym:

Pros:

  • Susan wants to get fit
  • Close to home
  • There is a pool
  • Several treadmills and other cardio machines
  • About $10 cheaper a month than Inside Out
  • Classes fit my work schedule better
  • It is open longer hours on the weekend
  • Personal TV’s on each treadmill/bike
  • We can go to any Y in the greater Memphis area

Cons:

  • My old gym is very close knit
  • TRX classes are an additional charge
  • There is not a dedicated stretching room (just a small area of the floor)
  • 30 minute time limit on cardio machines during peak times
  • Several more members at the new gym

I am excited with the move, especially once I am completely healed because once I start running again, I plan to run to the gym, do my lifting, and then run home, thus streamlining my workout on those days.  I also love that going to the gym isn’t such a time chore anymore, especially on high traffic days.  That will be at least thirty minutes a day extra for me each gym day.  I am also really looking forward to using the pool three or four times a week, especially while injured.

That being said, I am sad since I have being going to Inside Out for three years now, and they have been there since the very early days of my weight loss and health journey.  I was inspired to run in my first half marathon because of Inside Out and was introduced to TRX there as well.  The gym does a great job of encouraging you to get out of your comfort zone with your workouts and offers positive reinforcement whenever you need it.  I am thankful for my time at Inside Out and I can only hope that the YMCA will be as beneficial to Susan and I as Inside Out has been.