November 29, 2008

Finished the week with a 3.5 mile rest run

I had planned on doing another 8-mile run today, but my body was tired, and I did a 3.5 mile rest run. I never know from day to day what I'll be doing in my runs -- it all depends how my body feels.

November 26, 2008

Wow! A wicked-good 8-mile run!

My wakeup heart rate this morning was 51, and I felt really good. I added a half-mile to the distance I've run for the past two weeks and ran 8 miles on the Jordan River Parkway. I felt great during the run, kept a pace between 12:30 and 13:30, and took walking breaks every mile to mile and a half. Now, I'm looking forward to two days of rest and a nice Thanksgiving time tomorrow with two of my four kids and their four children.

The temperature was in the 50s (F), and it was a great day to be outdoors. I wore my long sleeved cotton T-shirt and should have worn a short sleeved shirt, because I felt too warm. However, it wasn't bad.

Running most of the big hill in my route

In past posts I've mentioned a big hill in my running route. I'm almost to the point where I run the full hill. Every two weeks, when I increase my distance, I also increase by 50 yards or so the amount of the hill that I run (I then walk the remaining distance). In another month to six weeks I should be running the whole hill.

On my return trip, I get good practice running down the hill. Going down a steep hill is more stressful on ones body than going up the hill. Especially on the knees.

November 24, 2008

Today was a 5-mile rest run

My wakeup heart rate this morning was 49, and I felt great. Because of my low heart rate and my feeling good, I considered running 8 miles today. I didn't run until late afternoon, and I felt great during the 1.5 mile out-back on the new northbound leg of the path. But, after I had gone another half mile I could tell this wasn't the day to increase my distance, and I settled for a rest run. I ran a slow pace and felt OK during the 5 miles, but by the time I finished the 5 miles, the sun was down and the temperature was dropping. I wore a long-sleeved cotton T-shirt (one layer), and it was damp from my sweat. As the temperature dropped, I started to feel cold, and I was glad to stop at 5 miles. The temperature was in the high 40s (F) when I left home and was probably close to 40 when I returned home.

November 23, 2008

Quick recovery from yesterday's run

After a good solid nights sleep, and after only 14 hours since the end of yesterday's run, my wakeup heart rate was 50 this morning. My body, of course, isn't fully recovered, but having my heart rate be low is a good sign. If I sleep well tonight I should be ready for a good run tomorrow. Normally I do a 5-mile rest run on Mondays, but if I feel strong I may do 8 miles tomorrow and do the rest run on Wednesday.

November 22, 2008

Finished my rest week with a 6.5 mile run

My wakeup heart rate this morning was 50, and I was glad to see it come down, thanks to the good sleep I've been having this week. I considered doing an 8 mile run but decided to stop after 6.5 miles as my finish to this rest week. If I feel fine next week, I'll go for 8 miles on my mid-week and weekend runs.

The temperature was in the high 40s (F) during my run, and it was a great day to be outside.

November 21, 2008

Another night of good sleep

When my body gets into a habit of sleeping less than seven hours (waking up early and not going back to sleep) there is a certain procedure that I go through to get my body back into a normal sleep routine of 7 - 71/2 hours.
  • I change my behavior and go to bed earlier so my 7 hours will finish about an hour or less after daylight. When I was younger I had no difficulty staying up late (I'm a night owl) and sleeping in until 10 or 11, but now I wake up about an hour after sun rise regardless of how long I've slept. I really enjoy doing projects late at night, and that gets me into trouble with my sleeping.

  • I stay in bed for 7 hours, even if I'm awake. This helps, I assume, my body adjust to being in bed longer.

  • I take after about five hours a homeopathic remedy called Nux Vomica to help my mind settle down and quite thinking of everything. That remedy really helps. I drink two glasses of water during the night, so I'm up several times going to the bathroom, and I time my use of Nux with one of those trips. I usually go right back to sleep after I finish a bathroom trip, but when I've been suffering from a sleep deficit, I stay awake after about 4 or 5 hours of sleep.

    I take a half-hour nap during the day.

November 20, 2008

This week is a rest week

I've had two weeks of good running, so I'm taking this week as a rest week to help my body get back to a normal sleep schedule. I ran 3.5 miles this evening along the Jordan River Parkway. I felt pretty good, but I was starting to get tired during the last mile. I've slept better during the past two nights, but it takes time for ones body to recover from sleep deficits. Our bodies needs rest to recover from the stress of running, and older persons, like me, need extra rest. My wakeup heart rate this morning was 53.

A Park Ranger Questioned Me

While I was stretching at the end of my run, a park Ranger drove up and stopped not too far from me. I assumed he was going to question me about being in the park after dark, but he didn't. He had seen a stray dog and was trying to find out who owned it. The dog had come over by me, and the Ranger asked me if I owned the dog, and I said, "no".

When I first saw him, I was surprised that he would want to talk with me, because the park is open until 10 pm and the time when he talked with me was about 7 pm; I was a little concerned about it. The park rangers do good job of patrolling the park. I see them frequently during the week. I appreciate their efforts to provide a safe place for people to walk, run, or whatever while they enjoy the outdoors.

November 19, 2008

Finally, I had a great sleep last night!

I slept for a good 7 hours last night. I was still up later than I should have been, but I went to bed earlier than I've been doing for the past 10 days. So, tonight I'll be in bed by 11:30. And, I'll eat regular meals today, too.

November 18, 2008

I did a tired 5-mile rest run

My sleeping schedule has been really messed up for the past 10 or so days, and I've been going on 4-5 hours of sleep a night. It caught up with me today. I knew I was in trouble when I took my first walking break after only 1/8 mile and a second walking break about 1/3 mile later. After I warmed up, though, I was able to go half a mile between breaks. As I ran, I had to make a decision about finishing the 5 miles or aborting the run. I was running, more of a jog, pretty slow, and I decided to finish the distance by taking walking breaks when I needed them.

I had planned on going out earlier in the day and thus didn't eat breakfast. However, I did eat lunch and tried to take a nap (without success). I then went running in the late afternoon, and the only food I had all day was the lunch. I think the lunch probably gave me about enough calories to compensate for those burned during my run, so I went the whole day without consuming calories for my basic bodily functions. After I returned from the run I ate a banana and drank a glass of orange juice. Not long after I ate that food, some friends came by to visit, and I was shivering while talking with them. I wrapped a wool afghan around me while we talked, and that helped. By the time they left, I felt warm, probably due to the banana and juice. In looking back on all of this, today was a real bummer. I have no one to blame but myself for messing up my sleeping schedule (staying up late and not being able to sleep after the sun comes up) and not eating much.

The six geese are still a honking

Most of my run was after the sun had gone down but it wasn't daylight yet. The Salt Lake Valley is surrounded by high mountings, and the sun sets behind the mountains earlier than it would in flat country. I was on my way back when I say 6 or 7 flocks of geese flying north with lots of honking. They passed me and continued going north for another quarter mile. Then then turned went south and passed me again. I guess they were looking for a place to spend the night. It seemed strange that they went north and then reversed course and went south. Oh well, they know what they are doing.

November 15, 2008

The end of another good running week

I ended my run with another 7.5 mile run along the Parkway. I was out earlier today, and the shade temperature when I left home was 40 (F); it was 45 when I returned. My wakeup heart this morning was 52, not quite as low as last week but still pretty good. I was a little more tired during this run and didn't go quite as fast as I did on Thursday and on last Saturday. All of my walking breaks were at 1-mile markers, except the first walking break which was at the end of an out-back on the new trail (1.5 miles).

This was my second week of running 7.5 miles, and if I feel good next week, I'll do 8 miles for my mid-week and week-end runs. My rest run is always 5 miles.

There were a lot of walkers, bikers, and runners on the Parkway this morning. Also, I saw quite a few police officers from the Academy. Normally when I see them, they are doing 1.5 mile qualification runs, but this morning they were just doing a training run.

November 13, 2008

It's mid-week, time for my medium run

I ran in the afternoon for 7.5 miles on the Jordan River Parkway. It was another beautiful day with shade temperature in the mid 50s (F). I didn't measure my pace, but I felt like I was running about the same pace that I ran on Saturday.

In my previous posts going back a couple of years, I've mentioned a big hill. My runs longer than 6.5 miles take me up that hill. I'm not running all the way up, but each time I increase my distance, I also increase the amount of the hill that I run. In 3 or 4 more increases (about 100 yards per increase), and I'll be running up the whole hill. I'm getting better at running down the hill, too. A month ago my knees were weak and couldn't handle the stress of running downhill, but now I can jog down the hill at a pace of about 14 minutes.

November 10, 2008

A good start to the week: a 5-mile rest run

I had a nice 5-mile run this afternoon. There was a light rain during the first half hour, and then the rain stopped but the sky remained cloudy. The temperature was in the mid 40s (F). I felt good during the run. I don't think I went as fast as I did on Saturday, but I think I went faster than I usually do on my rest runs. As I usually do, I let my body set the pace.

When I first woke up after 6-6 1/2 hours of sleep my wakeup heart rate was 53. After I had been up for about 3 hours, I took an hour nap, and when I woke from that, my heart rate was 50. This is a good example of how sleep affects heart rate.

November 8, 2008

Finished the week with another 7.5 mile run

I had a great run today! My wakeup heart rate was 51, and I had a higher energy level. The sky was sunny with a shade temperature of mid 50s (F), and it was another great day for running. I kept a pretty even pace during the run, and didn't feel tired during the last couple of miles. In fact I felt so good that I measured my pace during the last half mile at 11:24. I took walking breaks every mile, with a few brief stops in between to pick up litter.

I'm considering last week as a rest week, so this week is the first of three or four weeks with, hopefully, good improvements in my body strength. I'll do 7.5 miles next week, and then if I feel fine, I'll move it up to 8 miles week after next.

November 6, 2008

Ran 5 miles but was tired

I haven't quite gotten enough sleep during the past two days, and even though my wakeup heart rate was 54 yesterday and today I was tired during my run. On Tuesday night I got 6 1/2 hours sleep and 6 hours last night instead of the 7 hours that I need. Except for my energy level, it was a nice run.

We had a cold front come through Tuesday and Wednesday, and we had about 5 inches of snow Tuesday night. Last night the temperature dipped to 19 (F). The daytime temperatures have been above freezing, so the snow is melting. The Parkway path was clear during my run today. Tomorrow and Saturday morning will be sunny and warm, but we may get some rain Saturday evening.

November 3, 2008

A great 7.5 mile run

In attempt to give my body more variety in my running, I thought I'd move my 5-mile rest run around. So, today I ran 7.5 miles instead of 5 miles. The 7.5 miles is an increase of 0.5 miles. I had a good run. The temperature was in the low 50s (F), the sky was cloudy, and it was a great day for running.

I was passed by a guy who was really moving. He looked to be in his 30s, and he was probably running 7 minute miles.

Cleaning a dam on the Jordan River

The new section of the Parkway that I've been reporting on ends near a dam in the Jordan River. The water level in that part of the river was very low when I ran to the dam, and I saw that the center section of the dam was hinged and had been swung up in the air to let all the water flow through the dam. I saw a man on the dam poking in the water with a long pole. I'm guessing he was getting debris out from the dam and getting the dam ready for winter.