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Ran a part of the Louisville Loop on Saturday. Pictures are from Saturday run with Alex (his first 10 miler) and Sunday's 10 mile (6 mile sub 11:30-12:00 with last 4 progressive tempo to finish last mile at 5k pace).
Talked to Dad today, he got good news from his specialist and a discussion about more tests. Overall he is happy with the prognosis. We also had a discussion about financing the Run. He is worried about the Run dipping into Amy and my personal finances too much, so he wants to send me money to help pay for gas and incidentals. He wants to talk to mom and figure out what they can afford to donate. I started getting frustrated a little as I explained to him that the idea was to honor them, our relatives we’ve lost to complications with diabetes, other people who have diabetes. I also said it was a way to thank him and mom for all they have done for me and others. I used to think Dad had a hearing problem. What I have learned is he follows his own train of thought and sometimes that train of thought is very loud. He can’t hear you talking over the whistle and click-clack as it travels through his mind. If you are talking to him face to face, it is very easy to see the train rolling through, but if you are on a phone, he pauses lets you speak, then continues when you have finished completely oblivious to what you have just said. I have experimented in the past to test this hypothesis by stringing random words together like, “Walrus pancakes shrimp road banana switch table.” That time he continued on about a story from when moved in with Aunt Helyn of which I was supposed to learn a lesson of some kind. As I continued talking with him tonight, I realized he wasn’t listening, and they had made a decision.
There are battles to fight and battles to compromise and battles to lose. You realize this as you get older. I think this is a battle for me to lose. Dad and Mom want to feel more active in the Run Across Kentucky, so I should let them. It would be selfish to do otherwise. Even though I’m doing the running, it is not about me.
Our kids, Sara and Josh, lost their grandfather on their Dad’s side this week (I am their stepdad). Grief is difficult to deal with for many people, but they are doing well. That side of their family has been through a lot in the past few years and needs positive thoughts and prayers. Please keep add them to your prayers especially over the next few weeks as they all adjust to new routines.
Peace be with you.
I was going to continue the discussion about the maps from the other day, but I would like to postpone that to post this from Run Across KY on Facebook
Just heard about you on WLKY news. Although I live in Indiana, I'm backing you 100%. I'm going to see if I can sponsor a mile or two for my mom. She was diabetic and went into kidney failure in 2001. The docs said that each of my siblings and I would only have about a 50% chance of matching her well enough to donate a kidney. Surprisingly, all 5 of us matched well enough to donate. After a "family meeting", I was the one that would donate the kidney. Thirteen years ago March 9, I gave my mom one of my kidneys. She died last year on March 3rd...just 6 days shy of the 12th anniversary of our surgery. We had 12 years with our mom that we wouldn't have had. THANK YOU for bringing attention to the seriousness of diabetes!!!!
Nearly everyone I talk to about this disease has a relative that is or has been affected by this disease. Thanks for letting me share your story.
I am trying to make it a goal to write/blog/comment at least every other day. I feel like I should comment on training or running in general, but there is so many articles by better writers who are more knowledgeable about running. I can only comment on my own meandering path as a runner.
Anyone who has been around me since we announced this venture of running across Kentucky has noticed I talk about it constantly. It has become quite an obsession. I have business cards that fly out of my hands. I put tips for waiters under the card. They fly out of my hands like I am makin' it rain. (Yeah, I got the 4-1-1) They are conversation starters even though they weren’t meant to be initially. They have become the prompt that leads to the Look.
The Look starts with a blank stare shifting to “you are stupid and crazy,” then “oops, I think he realizes I’m looking at him like he sprouted a third arm out his head, “ and finally “He’s serious?” I used to watch this really neat show called “Lie to me.” It starred Tim Roth (I think) and he was an expert of microexpressions, which I had read about in a book by Malcolm Gladwell. The romantic subplots were boring, but the crimes and how he solved them were fascinating at times. It was probably the charisma of Tim Roth, but it was addicting. The Look is a series of microexpressions, but they leave an impression and usually start a conversation.
This weekend we were at a volleyball tournament. If you have never been to one, teams play games, ref, and rest. We had a long break of reffing then resting, so I went to the car to grab my clothes to run. The freezing rain/sleet/snow mix had briefly stopped, so I was primed for a run. I changed into my shorts in the bathroom, but stepped into the hallway to pull on my extra shirt layers, jacket, and vest. A lady was getting water at the fountain and we had a conversation like this:
“Are you going running in this? More power to you!”
“Yeah, I’m training to run across Kentucky this summer. “
“I’m trying to raise money to fight diabetes.”
[The Look ends]
“My parents are diabetic. I want to do something to help.”
“My mom was diabetic. That’s great that you’re doing that.”
“Yeah, my doctor warned me I was high risk for it, so I lost a bunch of weight a few years ago and started running. I run marathons now.”
“I’ve tried to lose weight, but I have so many other health problems that get in the way.”
“I started by walking 30 minutes a day, and cutting back my calories with myfitnesspal.”
“An app that helps track calories and nutrition I found one day. I used to eat 4000-5000 calories a day before I lost weight.”
[searching Google Play] “ Is that it? “
“Yeah. I talked to my doctor, set a calories for each day, weighed in, and exercise 30 minutes a day.”
“That sounds great.“
“Here’s a card. If you have any questions or want to chat about anything email me. It was easier to lose weight when I talked to someone.”
“Thanks. Have a good run. Stay warm.”
And she walked away. Almost everyone I talk to about the run has a close relative that has been diagnosed with diabetes. It’s like a game of Six degrees to Kevin Bacon. The game works with you having another person give you a name of an actor than you have 6 steps to get to Kevin Bacon (using the internet is cheating). For example: Jennifer Lawrence to Kevin Bacon
1. J-Law in Catching Fire with Stanley Tucci
2. Stanley Tucci in Lucky Number Slevin (Great Movie) with Morgan Freeman
3. Morgan Freeman in The Bucket List with Jack Nicholson
4. Jack Nicholson in A Few Good Men with Kevin Bacon
Some variations say it has to be exactly 6 steps, but we usually play shortest route wins. Unfortunately the 6 degrees to diabetes is a much closer relationship for me. It seems that I am not alone. If you do a little research you’ll find that the Bacon number average is 3. Bacon numbers create a bell curve with 1 step and 6 steps being least and 3nsteps being the most. (Generally speaking, the bell curve is normal average distribution in math.) I realize my data set is not scientific. It is anecdotal at best, but if nearly everyone I talk to has a close relative with diabetes, it destroys the bell curve. Scary.
I ran through Joe Creason Park for the first time. I never knew there was a big house in the middle of it. I was looping through the park, and bam, big house. I was in my own little world most of the run. I was thinking about the Look and what it means. Do most people doubt I will finish the run? Is the run going to fail? Will we meet our goals? Am I foolish, crazy, or too idealistic? It was an introspective run. Sometimes you have to let the timer go, let your mind wander, and just put one foot in front of the other. I’ve seen coaches rant about “junk miles” but any activity that raises your heart rate is good. If you lock into 24/7 competition, you lose the fun in running. Life goes by too fast in a car. Running lets you see the world around you and take it in.
3 Challenges to you: 30 minutes of activity (walking, jogging, house cleaning, etc), find $5 in your budget and follow the link on the donation page, take a picture of something you haven’t noticed before in your normal day.
I am trying to make it a goal to write/blog/comment at least every other day. It is a struggle. I feel like I should comment on training or running in general, but there is so many articles by better writers who are more knowledgeable about running. I can only comment on my own meandering path as a runner.
What is your goal for your next race? I coach adolescent runners, and they are the most susceptible to making unrealistic goals that create more obstacles than successes. It is the folly of brash youth without the temperance of experience. The balance of brashness with experience makes great runs. If my goal for Rodes City Run 10K is 38 minutes, I am setting myself up for failure. My goal has to be personal. progressive, obtainable to be an effective goal that maintains positive growth as a runner. The mistake is to see every race as a finality. A race is a snapshot of where you are in your career as a runner. There are times that a competitive runner wants those snapshots to be certain events-- State XC meets, College Regionals, Olympics, etc. -- and takes measures to create that probability, but not all of us are competitive runners.
I am a competitive runner with myself doubts, my "demons," or my disappointment. Running is personal for me. I'm definite it is personal for others, also. In the Anthem 5K this past weekend, I ran beside a guy who was really pushing himself. He didn't care if I passed him, or he dusted me. His race was internal, the other 9000 people running weren't on the course with him. I crossed the line beside him shook his hand and said, "Great run." I didn't have any demons to run down that day, but I respected him for chasing his away. It is one of the things I find unites runners. I have learned that if I compare my runs to other runners, it defeats my motivation. I respect your efforts on the course. I'm not out there to beat you. I'm out there to tame me.
Running, for me, is a continuum of training, not a series of races. I understand the importance of races. I like running races. I find the camaraderie on the course to be one of the most uplifting things about running. But training is the most important aspect of running. Training is where you show your grit and determination. It's where you create your strategy. The best runners to watch during training runs are the stubborn ones. They take their workouts as seriously as their races. They understand that one workout does not make or break your races. These runners build a progression to their workouts that lead to their goals. Being a runner that understands the delayed gratification of training gives you a huge advantage over the impetuous runners that overtrain or undertrain themselves into inconsequential running. Your progression should fit your goals. If your goal is long term your progression should be slow and steady-- for example running for a college is a slow progression over four years of high school. Short term goals usually have shorter progressions-- like a Couch to 5K program that lasts a month.
When you run, you are very vulnerable. Have you ever noticed at televised races (marathons, triathalons, etc.) runners cross the line in various states of distress and euphoria? At Boston Marathon, there is a volunteer that is a psychologist who talks to the runners to make sure they are OK before the media gets to talk to them. He checks their emotional state and responsiveness. He gives them time to recover and refocus before they are inundated with questions and people. Even the shortest race has an emotional effect on runners. My first 5K after losing 60 pounds was one of the most emotional moments in my life. You are vulnerable as a runner, because no matter how much training, heart, or determination, you can fail. And everyone is there to see it. In a team sport, the team loses. An athlete can hide in the anonymity of the team. Not running. It's you. Alone. You are responsible for your success or failure. That's why it is incredibly important to tailor your goals to yourself and your readiness. It is also important to adjust your goals as unavoidable and uncontrollable circumstances affect your run. At Anthem, I was ready to try to PR if the run developed the way I wanted. I had already planned to pace Coach Tallent for one mile, but if everything felt good, and I had a good line, I was going for it. I had a contingency goal: find someone struggling and help them finish. It wasn't my day, so I chose the latter.
Your goals should be malleable and reactionary to your current state of mind, preparedness, and ability. If I run a 38 minute 10K March 8th, be ready with the AED. My goal is to run a conservative first half, and if things are going well, rock the second half for PR. If not, I'll have a few cards on me and will look for someone to talk to as I cruise to the line. See you then.