Sunday, September 28, 2008

My 30km journey on a Sunday morning...

Its been one of my most eventful runs till date. I started with some really tired legs and the first few kilometers were very difficult, I almost gave up on my planned 30km run. I also made changes to my route, originally i had planed to run till Hali Ali, about 2hrs after start then come back to Shivaji park and then do another 30mins around Shivaji Park, to complete the 3hr runs for doing 30km. After evaluating my condition at the 5km mark, I decided to abandon plan A and shifted to plan B. I now planned to run directly run to Shivaji Park and then run around the park, hoping for a 25km but was reconciled to something like a 20km. This would not only protect me from the sun (the path around the park is shaded) and 30 odd degrees of temperature, but also ensure that I was not stranded in the middle of nowhere especially if my legs simply gave up on me (the fear was very real).

That was not to be, by the time I touched the 10km, things started to change, I was getting into a good rhythm and the fatigue in my legs was starting to disappear (I also had a slight twitch in my right outer thigh a few kilometers back and even that did not appear again) and I got a feeling that the 30km was still possible unless something unexpected came up. And then next 20km were sheer bliss and I put in some 15laps around the park. It was an amazing experience moving from one extreme to the other. Actually my legs were feeling better after than the run than when I started.

What makes the run even more special is that this was my third consecutive run, I did a 11km on Friday followed by a 10km on Saturday. I needed to make this run, to give me confidence for my ultra (78km run).

Next weekend I will be traveling again, which means there will be no long run over the weekend. But luckily for me Thursday is a holiday and I can easily put in a 20km plus run for the week. I hope to run on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, doing a 50km plus week (since the Saturday and Sunday runs will be in a around a hill, I will be able to bring some variety to my run and climbing steep slopes will do me a lot of good). I also hope to run on Monday and Tuesday, which will sort of make up for the missed Sunday long run, as i will be able to put in four consecutive runs of around 10km each.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Last two weeks...

Its been over 12days since my last post. So will do a quick recap of last week. I again managed to do 4 runs during the week, on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, with 13k, 13k, 11k and 23.5k. The Sunday run was very difficult as I just was not feeling good during my run & legs were feeling tired, which meant i had to walk in between twice to get through the distance. I sort of got into some rhythm after the 17km mark but did not have enough time to do a 30k given that I was already running late for a breakfast meeting in town.I took a good 2hr 40min to do this distance. I started at 7.50am instead of the planned 7am run, its still so difficult to get myself out of the house on a Sunday morning. But, now that the weather is deteriorating I end up suffering bigtime for delays.

This week has been very hectic and given the schedules its been difficult taking time out for early morning runs. I managed a run on Wednesday, finally a good 13k smooth run and am now trying to follow it up with three consecutive runs on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I had a decent run on Friday and managed a 11k. I hope to follow it up with another similar run today and top it off with a good 30k run tomorrow. I badly need a good long run and the three consecutive runs will do me a world of good if I can manage it well. It will also tell me about my level of preparation for the Ultra in November.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Awesome weekend...

I could not have had it any better. I did a 20km run today in 2hrs, after doing a 17km run yesterday, could not have done any better. This takes my weeks mileage to 61km, the best (yet)weekly mileage for the year. What makes it really special is that fact that I was planning it to be a low mileage week, as I am away from Bombay.

The main reason for this has been the wonderful weather in Baroda. Its rained in the evening on both the days, which has kept the temperature at reasonable levels, plus the fact that I had 6.30am and 6am starts on the two days. And yes it was quite humid by Baroda standards, which is usually quite dry.

I plan to take a break on Tuesday (my scheduled day of running), to celebrate this. But, will try and make up for the miles towards the weekend. I hope to do a 30km run next Sunday.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Weekend getaway and big questions...

So for things have been going better than expected with my runs, am trying to have a well deserved weekend break to unwind and to get recharged.

I managed a 13km and 11km run on Tuesday and Thursday and followed it up with a super 17km run today in Baroda. I had originally planned two 10km runs on Saturday and Sunday. I was feeling very good and the weather was a lot better than Bombay and I decided to do more. It was also easier for me to have a early start today (6.30am), lot easier to get out of bed in a new city. I hope to go for my run tomorrow at 6am and hope to do atleast another 15km tomorrow.

I also caught two very interesting and inspiring movies, Rock On and A Wednesday. The former tells you to live and fulfill your dreams (plus its never too late to pursue it) and the latter tries to shake the common man and system out of their slumber while dealing with terrorism (though I don't agree with the means used in the story, but we definitely need a awakening to be more demanding of ourselves and our government & its bodies). The serial blasts which have taken place in Delhi today, just reinforces how helpless the common man is in the hands of terrorists. Wondering what answer the common man can give to these endless serial blasts, and being insensitive and moving on with normal life is just not the answer....

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Dri-fit shoes??

I recently realized the discomfort one goes through (other than dehydration & exhaustion!!) while running in humid weather. All my recent runs which last more than an hour, have been in shoes which are completely wet (its almost as if I am wearing shoes which have been soaked in water) on the inside. Its the same feeling while I am running in the rains. The reason why this happens is that perspiration from my singlet and shorts (both of them are dri-fit), drips through my legs, to my socks (again dri-fit) and finally into my shoes. And once it enters the shoe there is no place for it to go.

Are there any shoes which suck out the fluids from inside to the outside and keep the inside of the shoe dry? (well as dry as it can get in the given conditions). Or, how does one stop the body sweat from entering the shoes (something like sweat band for ankles)? Any suggestions??

End of a tough week

Its been one hell of a tough week. I have not missed my runs for a long long time, its very difficult when your legs feel perfectly fine but your body (in this case the severe bout of cold, which made breathing difficult) just does not allow you to run.

After a lot of struggle I have managed 6km, 12km & 15.5km runs on Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday, taking the weeks tally to 33.5km. Am yet to recover from the cold and cough. Today's run was smooth but after the first the one hour mark, I needed to walk a while to get my breathing back to normal. Given the traffic conditions in Bombay, its not a good idea to breath through the mouth. It took me 1hr 46mins to complete this hard run of 15.5km. The extremely hot and humid weather just decided to make things more difficult (it had rained the previous night), even though I had a early start of 7.20am.

Looking forward to a much better next week. I hope to run on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. I am off for a long weekend, badly need the break to recharge my batteries, and look forward to some interesting runs in a new city. On mileage terms the week will not be very big, as there is no way I can take three hours off to complete a 30km run over this weekend.

Last two weeks, high and low combo

I had a fab run last Sunday, managed a good 25k run to complete the targeted 60km for the week. Did the run in about 2hr 40mins. I had managed three other runs during the week of 11km, 11km and 13km each on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

I was traveling on Monday and Tuesday, so had planned a short run on Tuesday of about 6km followed by a 13km on Wednesday morning when I returned. But this is when things started to go wrong, I was down with a very bad cold on Tuesday. I was just about able to complete my 6km run on Tuesday morning in Maharani Baug area of Delhi, which was a welcome break from my regular runs. After that its been 4 days of a lot of rest and sleep (10hrs each day) and cold medication for 2 days to bring things to bearable level (my first shot at cold medication after many years, I usually prefer to just wait it out).

All this meant I was only able to run on Saturday and this was a sort of a comeback run, getting my lungs to act normally & legs back to normal. It was a hard fought 12km and it took me 1hr 30mins, as it included a walk and run routine, as the chest congestion (from the cold) is still there. But, the only way to start feeling normal again was to start running. Plus a break from running simply messes up my training and build up of long runs. I hope I can complete the week with a good long run today, but will not try and attempt something fancy.