Friday, July 31, 2009

Friday Morning Fun

3 mile w/u
4-4.5 miles barefoot incl. 4x100m barefoot strides
2.5 mile c/d
Total: ~10 miles

I won't steal Jordan's thunder and share too much info about his workout, except to say that he ran very, very well. But who cares about that when I can regale you with the tales of my backwards barefoot laps? Exactly.

To begin with, this was hands down the best weather of the entire week. Low 60s with a light breeze and low humidity is just about perfect by anyone's standards, and I was glad for Jordan's sake that his tempo was scheduled for today. As for myself, I felt pretty fantastic due in no small part to the weather, but also to the energy on the track. I saw Jordan (and Scotty D., ever the gamer, pacing the effort on his trusty bicycle) as we crossed paths on every lap, and though I never let things get out of conrol I certainly fed off their energy. Sometimes I get bored by the monotony of continuous loops on the infield, but today I was totally engaged and thoroughly enjoyed every step.

Thursday, July 30, 2009


68 mins. incl. 3 miles uptempo (6:21, 6:25, 6:13)
~9.5 miles

Just like the old days when we were training for the Boomtown Run half, Jordan and I doubled up for our respective uptempo efforts. As we've done previously, I ran a few miles solo before picking him up back at the house, then once he got warmed up after a few more miles we launched into my uptempo section. Overall I felt solid, good but not great, but much smoother and more relaxed than last week. A light rain fell during the first half of the run but petered out thereafter, leaving the air cool but fraught with humidity.

After dropping me off at Main Street Jordan continued to pick things up for the rest of his run. Does it bother me that he "jogged" his cooldown faster than my fastest mile? Okay, fine, just a little bit.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

No Complaints

AM: 43 mins.
6 miles
15 mins. core/stretching
PM: 31 mins.
4 miles

You know how every once in a while you have a run that just clicks? Sure, the other 90% of your outings may be sluggish or slow or even downright uncomfortable, but you endure these days by holding out hope for one of those rare moments of perfection. Well, friends, today was one of those days. For whatever reason, I could tell from the first few steps that it was going to be an enjoyable run. The time passed too quickly as we wound through some familiar terrain, and I was almost disappointed to see Main Street come into view just past 40 minutes.

I grabbed Jordan from OK Runner at close of business this evening and we headed over to the high school with Carrot Top in pursuit. Scotty D. was hoping to attempt his first post-injury (or, let's be honest, mid-injury) run of 5 or 10 minutes and wanted to confine things to the faux-grassy infield. Not suprisingly, I was tempted to kick off the shoes for the second day in a row, but since part of our run included loops around the school I opted not to. Even so, all but about 200m of this jaunt was unpaved, so my legs and feet still felt the benefits of the softer surface.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Against the Clock

3 mile w/u
3 miles barefoot + 4x100m barefoot strides
2.5 mile c/d (incl. 1 barefoot)
Total: 8.5 miles

The time has come to bid Gary and Roger adieu, so we made plans to rendezvous for coffee at 8am prior to their departure. As a result, Jordan and I were up and out the door by 6:30 for his relatively brief 300m workout. The temperature wasn't too bad but the air was heavy and sticky--not ideal for a workout, but certainly could be worse.

I followed my now-familiar routine of warming up with him, then shedding the shoes and hitting the turf for the remainder of the run. As always, it felt absolutely fantastic, and had we not been already running a few minutes late to meet the fam I would've been perfectly content to continue my counter-clockwise revolutions. I think he plans to revisit the track for a tempo run on Friday so perhaps I can indulge myself then.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Monday at the Museum

AM: 58 mins.
8 miles
PM: 3 miles

The constant drizzle and pervasive overcast skies made this a perfect day to stay inside. Fortunately, we'd coordinated in advance to take a private tour of the OKC Memorial Museum with Stacey, the developmental director there whom Jordan and I met at the marathon sponsors' luncheon a few weeks ago. Stacey showed the four of us around the museum and did an amazing job of bri
nging it to life. To say we were moved is an understatement, and I for one was unprepared by the level of raw emotion I experienced during our two-hour stay. Simply amazing. Anyone reading this who resides in the greater OKC area, I definitely recommend taking in this experience.

The survivor tree at the OKC Memorial Museum

We capped off Gary and Roger's last night in town with a fun evening at Gaijin with Scotty, Craig and Carolyn. Great conversation and good times were had by all, and we could've hung out for hours longer if it wasn't already past 10 and if we weren't already closing the place down.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Week in Review

65 miles
3 miles barefoot
2? AFDs (yikes!)
1 bedtime past midnight

I cut the mileage back a bit this week, though not necessarily by design. Had I run long (~12) on Sunday as prescribed I would've topped out right around 70, but a combination of the weather plus visitors in town plus my own laziness proved to be too much to overcome. Oh well, as Coach Simmons keeps reminding me, there will be plenty of time to buckle down over the course of the fall season. For now I'm just enjoying some time on my feet in the morning and fun with friends and family in the evening.

Summer Breezin'

AM: Cafe Plaid
PM: 57 mins.
8 miles

Maybe it was the fact that we didn't get home and in bed until well after 1 from the Midnight Streak, or maybe it was the heavy drizzle that was falling when I finally rose from my slumber, or maybe it was my rumbling stomach that hadn't been tended to in at least 15 hours. At any rate, I was just not in the mood to go for a run, long or otherwise, this
morning. It took little convincing to bring Jordan over to the dark side, and next thing I knew we were rounding up Gary, Roger and Sheba for breakfast at Plaid. The rest of them pansied out with coffee and pastries, but I went for broke with poached eggs on focaccia topped with pesto, goat cheese and sundried tomatoes. Heaven. Oh yeah, potatoes and fruit on the side too.

Doggie learns a new trick while Sheba looks on skeptically.

The run didn't happen until well after 5 in the evening, but fortunately the prevailing clouds kept temperatures in the low 80s. Jordan and I hit the pavement from the Embassy Suites and ventured down Robinson, notched a few laps around the GT, cruised the Norman High grass loop and then took a spin past Lions Park before heading back to Main Street by way of campus. If that's not a comprehensive tour of Norman in an hour or less I don't know what is.

Staking claim to prime real estate in Lions Park

To our delight, the weather improved enough to accomodate our party joining other Normanites at the Summer Breeze concert series in Lions Park. We enjoyed wine, snacks and some surprisingly not-bad tunes--Jordan and I detected influenes ranging from Passion Pit to Radiohead with a dollop of Bret Dennen--and were content to pass several hours taking it all in. Couldn't ask for a better way to spend a summer evening.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Midnight Streak and Other Shenanigans

60 mins.
8 miles

Since Jordan's big race is tonight, we ventured out for an easy shakeout around 8 this morning. He only wanted to get in 4-5 miles while I aspired to loftier goals (read: 7-8) so a spin around campus together seemed logical. First, however, we had to stroll down Asp to check out the scene on Campus Corner. Sure enough, as we'd read in the paper, contestants were lined up for several blocks to audition for "The Biggest Loser" at O'Connell's. Tryouts didn't begin until 10 but there were already 100+ people lined up by 8,
which was quite a few more than I expected to see. So yeah, that was intense.

After our morning of running and slinging shoes at the store, the highlight of the day was definitely Gary and Roger's arrival (with new furry friend Sheba in tow). They'd traversed mountain and desert alike on their trek from San Diego to Norman and were grateful to have finally reached their destination. We had a great tim
e hanging out with them for a few hours before it was time to head up to the city for the Midnight Streak. Being the good dad that he is, Gary gamely offered to both come along and drive us up to the race. Being the sane person that he is, Roger opted to stay behind with the pup and climb into bed at a more sensible hour.

Jordan receives some pre-race advice from proud pops

Upon our arrival at the fairgrounds I was surprised to see just how many people had turned out for the event. I spotted some familiar faces, including Carrot Top, Jerry and a couple I'd fitted for shoes earlier in the day (yes, they were sporting their new kicks). Spencer and Scotty even showed up for moral support and Miller High Life just before gun time. After a few delays of game, the participants were off and running at 11:10 or so. Due to both the darkness and the nature of the course, we wouldn't have another opportunity to see Jordan until he made his way to the finish, so for the next 15 minutes or so it was a waiting game. Before long we heard, then saw, the wailing sirens and flashing lights of the lead cop car followed by a rather stocky Mexican in a yellow OK Runner kit. Sure enough, Jordan crossed the line just a few ticks over 15 minutes to claim the decisive victory. He may not have met his goal of besting Kim Smith's time from the London meet, but given the heat and humidity and relative darkness I'll cut him some slack.


I snapped this photo just before he crossed the finish line.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Saxon Trails, Sort Of

AM: 46 mins.
6+ miles
15 mins. core/stretching
PM: 4 miles

This morning Jordan and I decided to shake things up by seeking out a brand new running destination, the newly-created trails at Saxon. Jordan heard about this new spot from OU head coach Martin Smith, who was in the store the week prior bragging about blazing this path with the help of the Iron Wolf (if you haven't already checked out the Iron Wolf video on Jordan's blog, I suggest you do so now).

On the plus side, we located the trails with relative ease and managed to find an easy access point. That said, we were a bit disappointed to discover that the terrain was still quite crude in many places, with rocks and tree branches scattered across a surface that could already be described as uneven at best. After completing one loop of roughly two (very slow) miles we decided to make our exit. I think the park will be top notch when it's completed, but we may have jumped the gun by a few weeks.

Since we were already parked along a country road southeast of town, we decided to finish out the jaunt in this pastoral setting. We saw very few vehicles and were instead greeted by horses, cows and even an ill-fated snake. I thoroughly enjoyed being out in what felt like the middle of nowhere (but was actually only a few miles from where we set up shop at the Norman Conquest last week). Running in town is fine, but you can't beat a few peaceful miles in the country with nothing but rolling hills in sight for miles.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

My Dad Thinks I'm Boring...And He Goes to Bed at 8:30

AM: 62 mins.
8.5 miles
PM: ~2-2.5 miles

It has been brought to my attention by my biggest fan (i.e. my dad) that my blog has been a bit lackluster this week. For that, I apologize to him and all my loyal readers, and I promise to spice things up soon...just not today. Sorry, but it's hard to really generate much excitement over a standard 8-mile run. But this weekend's going to be a doozy, Dad, just you wait!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


AM: 57 mins incl. 3 miles uptempo (~6:30 pace)
8 miles
15 mins. core/stretching
PM: 3 mile walk...

...and trust me, I'm counting that walk as something. Not miles, but perhaps calories? We ate one flapjack too many for "breakfast for dinner" and needed to walk it off., so I suggested we hoof it to McDonald's to pick out a Red Box selection. By the time we returned home my stomach felt a bit less distended, so I suppose I accomplished what I set out for.

The morning run was fine, although being the genius that I am, I picked the only section of the run that was entirely into the wind and gradually uphill to do my "uptempo" miles. Oh well, it's about the effort, and I certainly felt challenged. Actually my legs were decent but the breathing was a bit more ragged than I would've liked. But hey, put it on the board.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Barefoot Again

3 mile w/u
3+ miles barefoot + 4x100m barefoot strides
2.5 mle c/d
Total: 9 miles

I did some barefoot jogging during Jordan's pre-race workout. It was swell.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Monday Double

AM: 52 mins.
7 miles
15 mins. core
PM: 3 miles

This was a great start to the week as I put a solid double on the board. We started things off with a double loop through Sutton and some core this morning, then capped off the evening with a few laps around Norman High. My legs felt surprisingly fresh on both runs, a contrast to the way I felt finishing yesterday's longer jaunt. If the weather doesn't get out of control this could turn into a great week of training.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Week in Review

70-71 miles
5 miles barefoot
2 nights at Blu
1 day at Camp StuCat

Yup, I'm still plugging along. Nothing to report in the way of aches or pains, which is always a positive. To be honest, I have no idea where my fitness is at, as I haven't really tested it any time recently. I think next week I'll try to get in another tempo-like effort in addition to the fartlek just to give myself an idea of how everything is feeling.

The highlight of this week was definitely spending time with so many friends: Brittany (Saucony), Cain (Mizuno), StuCat, Kristi, Coleman, Jess, Scotty and Jenny. I'm going to miss these crazy kids when I head back to Charlotte in three weeks.

Nice and Easy

90 mins.
12 miles

Sometimes you just need an easy, relaxed girl-paced run. If you spend most of your time running with super-fast boys, you don't get these runs nearly often enough. Fortunately I had a chance to take in a morning jaunt with Jenny G. today, and my leggies definitely appreciated the slower pace. I'm already a bit sore from my hill frolicking yesterday and Jenny is still trying to shake a cold, so neither of us were pushing the tempo out there. Instead we were content to meander around town, taking in some familiar sights like Andrews Park, the GT and the OU campus before dropping her back at her car at the hour mark. Once on my own, I moseyed along the grass on Jenkins, down Imhoff and up Chatauqua before connecting back up with Jenkins and heading home.

Despite the relaxed pace I was more than ready to finish up this run, and upon arriving back at Main Street I immediately initiated the recovery process by downing the apple fritter Jordan purchased at Donut King the previous evening. Once he returned from his own outing we headed up to Panera for some coffee and newspaper action with Scotty D. and Jenny. Gotta love relaxing Sunday mornings when the long run is already in the bank.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Norman Conquest

20 min. w/u (2.5 miles)
Fartlek: 8x2 mins. on, 3 mins. off
20 min. c/d (2.5 miles)
Total: ~10.5 miles

The Three Musketeers were up and at 'em early this morning, as we rendezvoused with Craig at his casa east of town on Tecumseh. The Norman Conquest bike tour was taking place this morning and we were charged with manning the first water stop. Fortunately, we were also given the latitude to get in a run while we were out there, which meant Jordan would be tackling a tempo effort while I would attempt a fartlek. This is the only place in all of Oklahoma where I've seen even a semblance of a hill, and I have to say that these rollers were pretty legit. I was definitely glad I would be running for time and not for distance, as I'm pretty sure I was waddling at walking pace up some of the steeper ascents.

As Jordan noted in his blog, the best part about the run today was the noticeable dip in both temperature and humidity. Even though the rolling hills of Tecumseh afforded little shade, I never felt overly hot nor parched as temperatures hovered in the low 70s the entire time. While I wouldn't say I necessarily enjoyed this fartlek--it seemed to me that all my "on" segments took place on the uphills, although this couldn't be entirely true--things could have been a lot worse. I don't plan on venturing out to these hills on a daily basis but it's good to know that they're here for the taking whenever we want to break up the monotony.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Redemption Run

58 mins.
8 miles

For this jaunt we revisited the same loop that I felt so terrible on Monday, and I'm pleased to report that I completed it without any flailing or wheezing today. The temps have dipped just slightly and the difference was noticeable in the way I felt. Hoping for even cooler weather this weekend...fingers crossed.

I was going to double in the evening but I was lazy and hungry so I didn't. Got in some core work instead.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Double Trouble

AM: 50 mins.
7 miles
15 mins. core
PM: 4 miles incl. 3x100m strides

I put in a solid double today with Jordan. The morning run took us to Sutton, where we were seeking shade, and the evening run took us back over to the track. Jordan needed to do some 200m pickups and I just wanted to get in a few easy miles. I think a storm's a brewin' as it was overcast and noticeably cooler on our PM jaunt. Of course by "noticeably cooler" I mean in the upper 80's at 7pm rather than the upper 90's. After his two hundos Jordan coached my form on a few strides. He hopes to one day cure me of my shuffling tendencies, which is an admirable if lofty goal.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Barefoot Loops

3 mile w/u
~4.5 miles barefoot incl. 4x100m barefoot strides
2.5 mile c/d

Total: 10 miles

Where the barefoot magic happens

Jordan had a mile repeat workout scheduled today, which meant we were at the door and en route to the Norman High track just past 7:00. I was excited at the prospect, not so much because he was working out but because I would be able to participate in my favorite activity, barefoot running. I basically ran backwards loops with some strides thrown in while he and Carrot Top cavorted around the track. Too bad my actual workouts aren't as relaxing and enjoyable as this.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Camp StuCat

AM: 52 mins.
7+ miles
PM: 31 mins.
4+ miles

So, my morning run was kind of a big deal today. It marked the first time I've had the privilege of running with both the men's AND women's champions of the OKC Marathon. I know, I know, you're jealous. But seriously, I had a lovely run with Jordy and Cat up in the city today. The three of us plus Cat's newly-wed husband Stu are attending a luncheon for the OKC Marathon sponsors later this morning, so we planned to come up early and put in a few miles on the roads first. Cat took us on the trademark "StuCat" loop through OKC, much of which took place on or near parts of the marathon course. As a result, I basically got to relive the glorious details of the marathon vicariously through both of them as we reenacted it on our jog. Good times.

Jordan and Cat: Marathon Victors

After a few hours of relaxing, which included showers, coffee, primping and le Tour viewing, Stu came home from work to pick us up and head to the luncheon, which was to be held at the Memorial Museum. None of us had viewed the exhibits inside the museum before, and it was pretty amazing to see. We also found out later that Cat and Jordan are actually featured on a panel in the museum as the winners of this year's marathon, and the museum director was kind enough to allow me to snap a quick photo of it even though flash photography is strictly prohibited...apparently the perks of dating the marathon winner know no bounds.

The luncheon itself was a great time, and I walked away with a much fuller comprehension of and appreciation for the Memorial Museum and the marathon itself. Everyone involved seems truly dedicated to turning the marathon into more than just another race, but really focusing on the experience of honoring those who passed away in the bombing and celebrating the strength and resilience of their city. I have to be honest; in Jordan's leadup to the marathon and on race day I wasn't thinking much about any of those things, but I left the memorial today knowing I would never forget the legacy of the 168 people who lost their lives on April 19, 1995.

Jordan dazzled the crowd with his wit and charm

We spent the rest of the day at Camp StuCat (aka Cat and Stu's house) drinking iced lattes and chatting, and by 6pm it became apparent that not only were we sticking around for our second run of the day, but most likely for dinner as well. For our second jaunt we were graced by Stu's presence and enjoyed a windy out-and-back go through the surrounding neighborhoods. We capped off the day with tacos, brownies and more Tour watching before Jordan and I finally wore out our welcome around 10. All in all this was a fantastic day with great friends and a few runs thrown in for good measure.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Worst. Run. Ever.

58 mins.
8 miles

For reasons unbeknownst to me, this was one of my worst runs in recent memory. I'm not sure if I'm dehydrated or just tired or what, but at any rate I was ready for this to be over by mile 2. Jordan preemptively banned me from doubling today right after he said, "Seriously, you sounded better when you were running 5:58 pace last week." Guess I better listen to my body and take it easy the next few days.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Week in Review

69-70 miles
6 barefoot miles
50 high school football players dodged
4 days over 100 degrees
1 night out with good friends

The running is going well, but man, it's hot out there.

Sweltering Sunday at Sutton

81 mins.
11 miles

I was feeling slightly less than chipper when my alarm rudely awoke me at 7 this morning, owing to an evening of (too much?) fun on Saturday with friends. Lucky for me, the person I was meeting to run was also among the fraternizing group of the previous evening, so both Kristi and myself were content with taking things slowly at the outset. During the first few miles I could think of little other than my pounding head, but once we entered the tranquil shade at Sutton I started to feel much better.

The run passed quickly, but by halfway we were both pretty parched. (So was the basketball-sized turtle we spotted hunkered down in the mud near the pond. We spent a few minutes pointing him in the direction of agua before continuing on our way.) Kristi's knee was acting up a bit--she injured it earlier in the week trying to dodge an irresponsible driver who nearly plowed into her despite Kristi having both the light and the "walk" signal--and when we exited Sutton around mile 9 she was contemplating throwing in the towel. We made it another mile down the street before she stopped to walk it off. Surprisingly I was feeling better at this point in the run than at any other, despite my thirst and the ~90 degree temperature, but was still content to call it a day when I reached Main Street.

By the way, Jordan was still asleep when I got home and was in no way interested in going out for his 14-miler. I'll let him tell you the story in his blog...stay tuned.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Official Workout Photographer

3 mile w/u
2 miles incl. 5x400m in 75, 74, 76, 75, 74
2 mile c/d
Total: 7 miles

15 mins. core

Jordan had another track workout scheduled for today, and asked me to snap a few photos so he could "spice up his blog." I didn't have much else to do--would've liked to run my own workout but didn't want to overdo it; would've liked to run barefoot but didn't want to overdo that either--so I was happy to oblige. To keep myself from getting terribly bored, I also jumped in with him on the second 400 of each of his 800s, which he was aiming to run in the 2:30-2:35 range. I got plenty of rest in between and enjoyed turning the legs over on each interval. We capped things off with a mile of barefoot jogging before taking it back to the house.

Now those are some gnarly feet.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Today's High: 104

AM: 60 mins.
8.5 miles
Wind: 20mph gusting to 25mph
PM: 3 miles

The wind simply refuses to die down this week, so for the sake of shelter (and soft surfaces) we stuck to Sutton for the morning jaunt. In the evening we both closed down shop at OK Runner and then toured the Brookhaven neighborhoods for a bit. I felt pretty sluggish and am really trying not to overdo it this week, so when we got to a mile and a half I was content to stop and stretch in the shade for a few minutes while Jordan did a quick loop through the adjacent neighborhood. We finished up the run together and probably sweated off 10 pounds between us. It's brutal out there.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

I Got My Swim Trunks and My Flippie Floppies

16 min. w/u (2 miles)
Target: 3 miles "uptempo"
Actual: 6:26, 6:23, 5:58
22 min. c/d (3 miles)
Total: 8 miles
Wind: 19mph gusting to 24mph

We woke up this morning to discover that the water wasn't working in our apartment. As in, sinks, shower, toilet, nothing. Awesome. With little recourse, our plan was to go for the run and hope it was fixed when we returned. (Sort of like my technique of going to the bathroom when we're waiting on our food at a restaurant in hopes that the waiter will see that as his cue to bring the meals out. I boast about a 50% success rate with this tactic.) As soon as we left the house and crossed over Gray we identified the problem, as there was a large crew of men working assiduously over what appeared to be a busted water main. Double awesome.

My main workout for the week was a three-mile uptempo effort with no specific parameters set for the pace. Since Jordan had 10 steady on his agenda, the plan was to run a few miles warmup, have him (and Mr. Garmin) pace me through my uptempo section, then part ways for the remainder of the run. While the wind was gusty at best, Jordan did a great job of navigating me through some sheltered neighborhoods and keeping the wind from blowing straight into my face for most of the workout, which was nice, and
overall I felt decent but not great on the quicker section. The last mile by far felt the most relaxed, due in part to the final half mile being with the wind largely at my back. Still, I was surprised to split sub-6, especially after my only pace-related thought was "Hey, I might split under 6:20 on this one." A pacing whiz I am not.

The remainder of my run was breezy at best, and I returned to the apartment sweaty and parched. To my chagrin, the water was still not operational. Luckily Jordan had a plan, and upon his return his first words were, "Let's go shower in the fire hydrant!" Sure enough, the hydrant on the corner was blasting water full-force, and it took little convincing for me to throw on my swim trunks and my flippy floppies and trot over there. We had a grand time frolicking in the water, and attracted looks of bewilderment (from passing drivers), amusement (from the crew trying to clean up the mess) and envy (from the eight-year-old boy looking on with his dad). Normally I don't give Jordan's grand ideas much credit, but he was spot on with this one. I can't th
ink of a much better way to end a run on a hot summer morning.

Okay, so it wasn't quite this dramatic.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Easy Double

AM: 59 mins.
8 miles
15 mins. core/stretching
PM: 2-2.5 miles

I was out the door a few ticks before 7:00 this morning to meet up with Jenny G. along Jenkins. I asked a still-sleeping Jordan if he wanted to get up and join us, which elicited a response of "mmmmnnnnmmmm" and a rollover. Guess he's (understandably) tuckered out from his track workout.

The run with Jenny was quite comfortable even if the temperatures were not--it's finally getting hot around here again--but luckily the early start time made things manageable. She's off to Vegas today for a work conference for the next three days, so it was good to get in some QT on the roads before her departure.

I wogged an easy few laps around Andrews Park tonight because I felt like it. That, and the whole "round numbers" thing.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Barefoot Timing Duties

22 min. w/u (3 miles)
~5 miles incl. 15-20 barefoot strides
28 min. c/d (3.5 miles)
Total: ~11 miles
Jordan's workout

Since I have nothing to train for in the foreseeable future, my role during today's track workout was primarily as an assistant. Jordan was planning to hit some pretty quick splits and wanted me to call out his times at each 200. I was happy to oblige, especially because I planned on getting in plenty of barefoot running at the same time.

After warming up three miles together, Jordan spiked up for some strides and stretching while I kicked off the shoes and started running some barefoot laps. Our arrival at the Norman High track coincided perfectly with the arrival of their football team, which would serve to be both a source of entertainment and consternation throughout the workout. My plan was to start the stopwatch, sprint the diagonal across the field to the next 200 and repeat, and this hinged on not having to play Frogger dodging 13-year-old boys struggling to push sleds across the 50-yard-line. For the most part it worked out fine, but there were a few times when my attempts to circumnavigate them almost resulted in Jordan beating me to the line. That would've been embarrassing.

Overall I had a great time out there today. It was fun to be at the track and not feel nervous about my own workout. Instead I cheered on Jordan, sprinted around like a crazy person timing his splits, and jogged barefoot during all of his rest segments. This is the largest chunk of barefoot running I've ever done at a time, but it felt absolutely fantastic. By the time we made it back home, I was surprised to mentally tally up 11 miles as my total for the morning. That's about as impressive as Jordan's workout seeing as he only ran hard for nine minutes.

Monday, July 6, 2009

And Then There Were Two

AM: 57 mins.
8 miles
PM: 22 mins.
3 miles

With Scotty out indefinitely for a potential stress fracture, Jordan and I were left to go it alone this morning. Lucky for us the weather has taken a lovely (albeit brief) turn for the better, and this morning's run found the temperatures in the upper 60s and the humidity low. I felt faaaantastic on this jaunt, no doubt due to the aforementioned conditions, and really enjoyed being out there.

I picked Jordan up from work this evening and we headed over to the GT to put in a few more easy miles on the soft surface. The grass felt like it was running particularly slowly today--it seemed lumpier and bumpier than usual, and the grass was thick and coarse--but on the plus side it's definitely been mowed recently and there were no muddy patches. I stopped short at 3 and was content to stretch and hang out a bit while Jordan finished up his last mile. He's got a big track workout on tap tomorrow so we spent most of this jaunt strategizing.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Week in Review

58-59 miles
1 day off
3 doubles
4 airports (YVR, DEN, DFW, OKC)
2 afternoons poolside

Despite throwing in an unusually high number of doubles, the mileage was conservative this week due to no long run and Monday's cross-training. This was intended to be a week of rest and recovery after last Sunday's half, and I feel successful in accomplishing that. Next week I hope to kick up the mileage just a bit and throw in a few workouts. I also want to make a concerted effort to be diligent with the core, strides and barefoot running like we have been the past few weeks. It seems as though a miniature cool front has blown into town, which should make things much more enjoyable. Life is pretty darn good right now.

Lazy Sunday Run

71 mins.
10 miles

Jordan already recapped this run splendidly so I'll send you to his blog for the relevant deets. I will say, however, since Jeff has called my fitn
ess into question, that the first mile is a typo--it was 7:53, not 8:53. Totally changes your opinion of me, doesn't it?

Gotta love the shade and soft surfaces at Sutton

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Freedom Isn't Free--It Costs $20 on Race Day

13 min. w/u (1.5 miles)
2k in 7:40, 2k jog back to start
25 min. c/d (3+ miles)
Total: 7-8 miles

The day of our independence started out very early for the Three Musketeers, as we made our way to the outskirts of OKC for the Bethany Freedom Run. By "made our way" I mean took several wrong exits and wrong turns and somehow stumbled upon the race about 20 minutes before it started. Oops. I didn't care too much since I wasn't racing, but Jordan had hoped to get in a 5-mile workout with Jerry's Kids prior to the start and instead found his plans thwarted.

As we made our way to the starting line, I felt a twinge of jealousy for the people who were actually out there to compete. Normally I'm not big into doing a ton of local races, but seeing that I'm relatively fit right now it would've been fun to see what I could do. However, Jordan and more importantly Scott have both advised against me putting forth any more hard efforts before xc season starts, so I reluctantly agreed to heed their advice. That said, Jenny G. was there gunning for the women's title, so I thought it would be both fun and harmless for me to run a few hard k's with her before trotting back to the finish line to see everyone in.

The shotgun (yes, shotgun) went off just past 7:30 and we were on our way. Jenny and I split 3:45 and 7:40 comfortably through the first two k's before I bid her adieu and returned in the direction I came. Naturally I received my share of "you're going the wrong way" and "they went the other way" and the completely serious "did you win the race already?", all of which I suppose I deserved for running back along the race course. At any rate, I made it to the finish with about 5 minutes to spare before I saw Jordan approaching from the long straightaway leading to the finish. He looked strong and controlled and there was no one else in sight behind him. Jenny also won the women's race handily as she breezed in about five minutes later.

After taking a few minutes to recover, the three of us embarked on a leisurely cooldown back along the race course. Part of our plan was to locate Scotty D, whom none of us had seen since Jenny spotted him walking near 5k. Turns out he banged up his foot and endured a rather painful 2+ mile walk back to the finish area. The other huge letdown for the morning was not winning the airline tickets they raffled off at the end, despite having a 1-in-423 shot at doing so.

The rest of the morning and early afternoon was spent eating brunch, drinking mimosas and napping, just as our founding fathers would have intended.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Pre-Holiday Double

AM: 52 mins.
7 miles
PM: 4 miles

Rumor has it that Jordan and Scotty are suiting up for a race tomorrow, so we took the run nice and easy today in preparation. Despite the relaxed pace, I felt like poopy, enough so to call the run short about a mile before the boys did. There's nothing specifically wrong, just heavy legs.

In an unprecedented role reversal, I worked until 7 today while Jordan was off early, but he met he at the shop just before closing time so we could put in a few easy miles around Brookhaven. I felt better on this run to be sure, but I was also quite hungry and eager to finish up so we could enjoy a post-race meal of burgers and fries at Louie's. My finely tuned system runs at its optimal state when fueled by a combination of protein, carbohydrates, fat and sodium.

Thursday, July 2, 2009


AM: 53 mins.
7.5 miles
PM: 2.5 miles

I enjoyed a relaxed, easy run on the soft surfaces of Sutton with Jenny G. this morning. Finished it off with 2.5 in the evening just so I could call it 10. I like round numbers.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Back in the 405

AM: 62 mins.
8 miles
15 mins. core
PM: 31 mins. + 4x100m barefoot strides
4+ miles

After my seemingly neverending travel yesterday, I relished a restful night's sleep (blowup mattress notwithstanding) back in Norman. This morning Jordan and I jogged over to the OU tennis courts to meet Conor Holt and his wife Camille. Conor is the guy who owns Jordan (and the course record) at the OKC Marathon. Camille, a stud in her own right, was a 2008 Olympic Trials marathon qualifier and runs for Team Indiana Elite. I'd met them briefly on Friday night at Jazz in June, as they were in town visiting family, and this would be their last jog in Norman before returning to their home in Indiana.

Not wanting to hold the boys back, Camille and I set off in our own direction for the majority of the run. It was great to talk training with someone who, like myself, didn't really run much in undergrad and has made the majority of her breakthroughs within the past few years. She currently has a 2:42 marathon to her credit and is shooting for the Olympic Trials "A" qualifier of 2:39 at Twin Cities this fall. One unique aspect of Camille's training is that she runs slowly. Like, really slowly. 8:00 to 8:30 on her easy days slowly. We fell into a clip that couldn't have been much faster than 7:50 today and I found myself getting antsy, while she claimed this was quicker than she normally ran on her own. Mentally I would find this type of training challenging, but according to Camille she's made most of her breakthroughs after she decided to take her easy days really, really easy. Definitely some food for thought.

Another big training staple she advocates is iron supplements, specifically in liquid form. My roommate Tanya is big on this as well and I've been thinking for a while about taking some, but the chat with Camille was the push I finally needed to get on the ball. (Later in the morning Jordan and I picked some up at the health food store near Brookhaven and we're already well on our way to a positive life change.)

In the evening, I met Jordan at the Norman High track after he jogged there from work. He needed to do some 200m strides and I really just wanted to do some barefoot running, so I wogged a few shoeless miles on the infield while he went about his business. I capped things off with some barefoot strides before strapping the kicks back on and heading home. Have I mentioned I love running barefoot? Well, I do. Today was a near perfect blend of training and recovery, and I'll definitely take it.