A good run, all things considered

 

Today’s run (treadmill): 32 minutes

I’m in the middle of a lot of change at work right now and it’s affecting a lot of people. Do you know that people don’t like change, especially when it involves how they do their jobs? When you are the person who’s forcing all this change, it can create some tense moments. But deep down I know they appreciate my efforts and I’m sure they don’t mean it when they tell me I’m ruining their lives.

I’m exaggerating a little, but it is a busy time right now. Just to make it interesting, I’ve developed a head cold that I’m hoping will be short-lived. My schedule isn’t conducive to weekday workouts, so today was my first run since Sunday. Between the piriformis pain and this cold, you’d think it would have been a tough session. It wasn’t great fun, but it really wasn’t that bad.

I still haven’t seen an orthopedist but the pain has lessened significantly. When I started today’s run, I felt a mild jolt of pain. It wasn’t anything that prompted me to rethink the workout, but I kept the speed moderate in the spirit of not doing further harm. I couldn’t tolerate watching the news or listening to music, so I ran in silence. I kind of liked that.

Tomorrow is supposed to be mild (51°) but with 26 MPH winds. I’m aiming to run outside for the first time since February. The high winds don’t sound too inviting but the idea of running on a non-moving surface makes me happy. I’m thinking that a trail run might be the perfect venue for my reunion with terra firma.

Listening to my body, finally

 

My cold started on Saturday morning, leading to a terrible treadmill run later in the day. In the past, my position was to always run through a cold, but rest with a fever. This was clearly a cold, so I was surprised to have such a difficult time getting through my workout. I felt okay on Sunday morning when I joined the Runsketeers at Eisenhower Park, but the fatigue soon returned and I had trouble maintaining our very easy pace.

In retrospect, I’m happy to know that it was just a cold that was affecting my stamina and not something more serious. I took my usual rest day on Monday and, by Tuesday, it was clear that a run would do me more harm than good. However, I did cover five miles walking in the city that day. By Tuesday night I was officially exhausted. I spent much of Wednesday trying to rest and recover.

I’m still dealing with a full blown head and chest cold, so running is out of the question for now. I’m feeling a slight improvement today and I’m hoping that continues. I doubt I’ll run tomorrow, so this may turn out to be my lowest mileage week in over a year. That’s fine, since I run 5-6 days a week, it’s probably good to take a long rest every once in a while. It took a bad cold to make me stop, but maybe all this rest will do me some good.

Wet and chilly, but back to the run

Today’s run (street): 3.5 miles

This morning I actually felt apprehensive before going out for a run. I was concerned that I hadn’t recovered from two exhausting days that were accompanied by a cold. I still had some symptoms, but felt strong enough to give it a try. The rain seemed to be holding off so I chose the outdoor option.

By the time I got outside, the skies had darkened and I saw that water was collecting on the driveway. I considered heading inside and using the treadmill, but I decided to go for it. After all, what would be the harm of running in chilly and wet conditions while battling a cold? I didn’t really consider the implications, but conceded that I’d head back if the skies really opened up.

Despite having three days off from running, I didn’t feel much energy as I made my way through the neighborhood. This run was about getting back on schedule and I didn’t push the pace. The rain didn’t let up very much, but I dealt with it. By the time I reached three miles, I was ready to head towards home. I may have pushed a little too hard too quickly, but I was glad to be back in running mode.

I’m probably going to be stuck doing indoor workouts over the next two days due to a storm that’s predicted to come through, bringing flooding rains. If I get to full strength by the weekend I’ll work on hills, since the Town of Oyster Bay 5K, with its very long hill, happens the following Saturday.

On hiatus

This has been a tough week and it’s only Thursday. I developed a cold that may have been triggered by my flu shot and it’s creating sinus pressure and affecting my vocal chords. Unfortunately this cold (or possible allergy) coincided with public speaking engagements on Tuesday and Wednesday. Between my schedule and feeling low, I haven’t run since Sunday.

Today’s weather is expected to be stormy so I’m not sure what my options will be for a run. If it’s raining, I’ll need to use the treadmill to get back on schedule. I haven’t taken three consecutive days off from running in months, hopefully the rest has done me some good.

A glimpse (perhaps) of another emerging runner

Two routes to a healthy life

Today’s run (street): 3.25 miles

This morning I noticed a guy walking around the neighborhood while I was out running. Everything from his noticeable gut to his white New Balance walking shoes reminded me of myself, five years ago. My journey from a sedentary life to being a runner started with early morning walks around the neighborhood. That routine led to walking with some running, then running with a little walking. After six weeks, I was just running.

I don’t know this walker or his story, but I admire him for getting outside and moving. I have no idea if he’s been a dedicated walker or whether he has plans to transition to running. One thing that walking did for me was reinforce the benefits of of an active lifestyle. I lost 30 pounds between August and November of 2008 and half of that weight came off before was exclusively running.

This week I’ve struggled with a cold and decided to forgo yesterday’s workout. During my run today, I thought about that cold and realized that I was recovering fairly quickly. I wondered if my running had helped me hold off colds in the past, and if my immunity was stronger because of running.

I completed my run and noticed that my overall time was nothing special. I’d taken it easy in deference to my still present (but diminishing) cold and I think that was a good decision. I know that running keeps me in good shape and it might just be keeping me healthy. I’d like to think that the walker I saw will follow my path and get to his ideal level of fitness. Whether it’s by running or walking, the end result will be a happier life.

Running through a headcold is usually the best medicine

Today’s run (treadmill): 30 minutes

Without fail, I always experience some health related issue during the week between Christmas and New Year’s. With the exception of the accounting team who are called upon to close out the the year, my company pretty much shuts down during the final week. I usually take this week off and, in the past, have suffered the flu, pneumonia or colds during this time. This week it’s a mild head cold and I hope it stays that way.

The fourth quarter of the year is usually the most stressful, and I’m sure that’s why I get sick when things come to a halt. I started taking flu shots a couple of years ago and that’s probably paid off more than I know. Since my current cold is limited to stuffiness, sneezing and an occasional cough, I’ve chosen to ignore the symptoms and keep my running schedule. I’ve already covered 14 miles this week and the weekend is still to come.

We needed to get out fairly early this morning, so I returned to the treadmill to save a little time. I’ll admit that when News 12 stated that it felt like 20° outside with wind-chill, I decided to “protect my health” and run indoors. I didn’t push too hard at the beginning, but I steadily increased my speed and finished running with my heart rate at the low end of zone 4.

I still haven’t got out of my own neighborhood to run this week, like I usually do when I’m on vacation. Maybe I’ll do a trail run this weekend and I’ll look forward to the LIRRC 5-Mile Hangover fun run on Tuesday at Eisenhower Park.

Morning pity party

Today’s run (street): 2.25 miles

I don’t often skip two days in a row but I’ve been fighting a cold all week. I usually run well after resting two days but this morning’s workout was taxing. I’m thankful that my cold it isn’t any worse than it is. This time of year whenever I  feel run down I worry that I have the flu. You’d think I’d get a flu shot. When I got up my legs were hurting in unfamiliar ways and I attributed it to cold induced body aches rather than running. My pains ranged from my ankles to my upper hamstring and included shin and knee pain. Since I hadn’t run in two days I wasn’t concerned that the pain was related.

Today’s rain was just starting when I stepped out and for the first half of my run it remained a drizzle. It was far warmer than when I went out on Sunday but not too uncomfortable. Strong winds were blowing from the south as I headed out the door. My leg pain dissipated as I ran but my legs still felt heavy and my pace was ponderous. I was glad to be back on the road but I wasn’t really enjoying the experience. It felt like I was running with ankle weights. The rain picked up substantially after ten minutes and running into stiff winds didn’t help. I was anxious to get through the run so I could relax with a cup of coffee before I hit the shower. My overall pace was abysmal but I did succeed in logging my first miles of the week. My head cold remains but I don’t think running did me any harm. I’m hoping that tomorrow’s workout will be a better experience.