I HAVE MOVED

After a lot of thought and consideration -- I have decided to retire One Foot in Reality and leave it as an Archive. I will still monitor it to keep the trolls at bay, but will not be posting here any longer.

If you are looking for my new posts, please go to www.haroldlshaw.com .

Thank you for all they years of following One Foot In Reality.

Harold

Saturday, April 27, 2013

25th Annual Joseph's 5K Race Recap - 4/27/13

After a lot of thought I have decided to move some of best of my old posts from Aging Runnah and A Runnah’s Story blogs, primarily the old reviews, maybe a few of the better posts and race reports that I have written over the years. I have a feeling that at some point, my WordPress.com blogs are simply going to go away and I want to still be able to go back and read some of the stuff I wrote.

If you are reading this blog post, that is why it is has been re-posted here.

Originally posted on: April 27, 2013




Photo by Sue Morris

Today was the 25th Annual Joseph's 5K and this is the second year that I have run this race. The conditions were a LOT better than last year with bright sunshine, temps in the high 40's with a light breeze out of the north.

Instead of 20-30 mph winds and temps down in the low teens. The conditions were pretty close to perfect.

This was the first of my 3 goal races for the year and while I have split my training focus between my half marathon in June and today's 5K, my training has been going quite well.

I felt pretty confident that it would be a good race and wasn't disappointed. I had thought that I would go out faster than usual today, but when I look at the GPS reading it was about the same as my last race, so gotta push harder next time.

For about 50 yards of the first half mile of the race I was actually in 2nd place. The winner was flying and all I saw was the shrinking of his back as he quickly pulled away (he finished about 3 minutes ahead of me, he is 47 and when he turns 50 is going to dominant that age group for a while), then the eventual 2nd place finisher pulled away and finished almost a minute ahead of me.



Through most of the first 2 miles of the race I was in 3rd place running, but it definitely felt like I was working pretty hard to maintain that pace, I just couldn't get to cruising at that pace.

Then just before the 2nd mile Troy S (someone I worked with at Good-Will Hinckley) passed me.


After he passed me, I don't know why but, I lost my focus for about a quarter mile, before I got it back and while I closed the gap that he had gotten on me, I just let him get too far ahead of me to catch him.



It seems that I have a stretch every race where I loose my focus and I slow WAAAAAYYYY down, it is something that I have to work on.



I finished in 4th place overall, 9 seconds back of 3rd, while I was happy with that finish, I do wish that I displayed a little more mental toughness and held off Troy, but he ran harder and better than I did today and earned 3rd.

My time today was 21:20 which is a post-55 personal record by 4 seconds, beating my time at the Runner's World Festival 5K and a course record by 2:05. I was happy with the improvement over last year and it shows that some of my hard work is working.

I am wondering if this is about as fast as I will be able to run on my present training program, because I sure didn't have that 5th gear to cruise at during the race. Instead I felt like I was stuck in 4th and working harder than I should have been, to achieve the pace I was going and needed to downshift for a little while, then shifted back into 4th to the end of the race, but there just wasn't a 5th gear or the ability to downshift that last quarter of a mile.















Photo by David Colby Young

Either I need to change my training for the 5K (which is probably a good guess) or aging is taking some of the speed out of my legs, which unfortunately is part of the answer. I know that I have to work a lot harder to maintain my pace.

I did wear the Altra 3-Sums without socks today and was really happy with how they did. I forgot they were there, which is what you want from a pair of shoes during a race. So they did exactly what they were supposed to do - let me run without worrying about how my shoes were feeling.

The Altra 3-Sums that I wore during this workout were provided as a free media sample from Altra, with no expectation or agreement that I write anything about them. All comments about this product are my own and based on my actually using this product. Your experiences with this product might be different.



FTC Disclaimer: New guidance from the FTC requires that if my post includes or mentions products that I have received free of charge or that I am receiving monetary considerations for, that I am required to disclose this to you the reader - whether the product is the primary focus of my post or just incidentally mentioned in the post. There is no time limit on this requirement, which means whenever I mention a product that I have received for free that I still have to publish a disclaimer about it.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Personal Best versus Personal Record - Is there a Difference?

After a lot of thought I have decided to move some of best of my old posts from Aging Runnah and A Runnah’s Story blogs, primarily the old reviews, maybe a few of the better posts and race reports that I have written over the years. I have a feeling that at some point, my WordPress.com blogs are simply going to go away and I want to still be able to go back and read some of the stuff I wrote.

If you are reading this blog post, that is why it is has been re-posted here.

Originally posted on: April 26, 2013




Is there a difference between a Personal Best (PB) and a Personal Record (PR)?


Personally I believe that there is.

Way back in the Dark Ages of the 70's and 80's, when I first started running, other runners, (many of whom were much older and wiser than I ever will be, in other words they were about my age now), that I hung out with back then strongly believed that there was a huge difference between a PB and PR.

Ever since then I have always thought that a PB is an unofficial record and a PR is an official record.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

My All-Time Favorite Running Shoes - 2013

After a lot of thought I have decided to move some of best of my old posts from Aging Runnah blog, primarily the old reviews, maybe a few of the better posts and race reports that I have written over the years. I have a feeling that at some point, my WordPress.com blogs are simply going to go away and I want to still be able to go back and read some of the stuff I wrote.

If you are reading this blog post, that is why it is has been re-posted here.

Originally posted on: April 25, 2013

Add in about 5 more pair and it will be pretty accurate
Over the past 40 or so years that I have considered myself to be a runner, it seems that I have always been searching for the mythical "perfect" running shoe.
TheWife thinks I am crazy and that I have a running shoe obsession (fetish) and you know something she might be right.
However, I am ever hopeful of one day finding my "perfect" running shoe - if it actually exists.
You know that running shoe that lets me run faster, farther and keeps me injury free.
Especially since the 1980's, when running shoes, seemed to really take off.
Like most runners, I have several pairs of running shoes, in closets, hidden under my bureau (dresser), in boxes out in the garage or someplace in both of my vehicles (you never know when you are going to need to suddenly go for a run), besides the 4 pair that I am currently have in my running shoe rotation.
I tend to have a lot of initial and 50 mile running shoe reviews, but not so many 300 or 500 mile reviews. My experience is that far too many running shoes feel great for that first 100 miles and then by the time they get to the 300 mile mark, they either wear out too quickly or have some other quirks that make it so that I choose not to run in them any longer.
Over the years I have spent a small fortune trying to find that mythical and illusive perfect shoe. Although I think that I might have come close a few times, I am still haven't found THAT perfect running shoe - for me.
Different Shoe Companies
It isn't like I have been totally loyal to a particular running shoe company either, if a running shoe is out there and appealed to me, I have probably tried it out or will be trying it out, in the near future.
Here are most of the brands that I have tried at one time or another or even multiple times: Adidas, Altra, Avia, Asics, Brooks Running, Converse, Earth Shoe, Etonic, Mizuno, New Balance, Nike, North Face, Pony, Puma, Skaja, Saucony and Teva.
Looking back I haven't shown much brand loyalty. However, over the past 6 months I have pretty much stuck with 2 brands: Mizuno and Altra, except for a quick trip down memory lane and a deal on a pair of Brooks Pure Flows that I couldn't resist.
My Favorites
Out of all the shoes that I have run in, which shoes come closest to approaching that mythical perfect running shoe for me?
  1. Blue Adidas Marathon Trainer with the Dellinger Web (3 pair)
  2. Brooks Villanova (1 pair)
  3. Saucony Hurricane 5 (4 pair)
  4. Asics Gel Kayano 11 (4 pair)
  5. Nike Air Presto (3 pair)
  6. Mizuno Elixir 7 (1 pair)
  7. Nike Free 4 v2 (1 pair)
  8. Altra Instinct (2 pair)
  9. Nike Air Pegasus (4 pair) 2 original and 2 more around 2007/2008
  10. Mizuno Ronin 4 (1 pair)
There are several shoes that I am wearing right now that might crack or climb this list before they are done, but none have the go back and have to have them again status yet. The reason that when I could I added in the model number is that sometimes brands get too smart for their own good and screw-up a great running shoe in the name of improving it.
1. Adidas Blue Marathon Trainer w/Dillinger Web
from Amazon.com
Adidas had one of those near mythical perfect shoes as far as I am concerned - the Adidas Marathon Trainers with the Dillinger Web. They were a low profile, a lightweight shoe with just enough cushioning for me - a lot like today shoes that I would consider light-weight trainers.
One thing that I learned that you had to take out the board last and put a different insert into the shoe to make them more flexible and comfortable, but once I made those modifications, these were my favorite shoes of all time. Yes those running shoes on the cover of Jim Fixx's "Second Complete Book of Running" are the Adidas Marathon Trainers are the ones that I covet.
I have had three pair of these shoes and each pair lasted well past the 500 mile mark and literally fell apart when I stopped wearing them. I have been looking for another pair for several years and have yet to find a pair and unfortunately probably won't - they don't make them anymore.
I did find a pair of reproduction Adidas Marathon Trainers on Eastbay, but they were not the same as the original or least my fond memories of them and I did not like them at all (not even for just walking around).
Who knows maybe I now run differently than I did back in the 80's and this style of shoe no longer works the same for me? I have a feeling that if these shoes were to come out on the market today, the curved last would be a bit too much for my feet and they wouldn't attain this position.
2. Brooks Villanova
Screen shot-click on image for site
I bought pair of Brooks Villanova in 1977 and ran in them until 1979. They were a simple, very light and comfortable shoe that I ran up to 5-6 miles in. I do remember that when I got up to the 5 mile mark or so, my right foot tended to fall asleep?  I didn't stop running in them until my foot came out through the side of one them. I am not sure how many miles they had on them when I finally replaced them, but have a feeling it was probably a lot, since I was living on Cape Cod (Otis and Falmouth) and ran a lot down there.
3. Saucony Hurricane
In the early 2000's I ran almost exclusively in Saucony Hurricanes and was very happy with them. However, the prices began to creep up and eventually were costing $120 or more for a pair of shoes, which was too much for me at that time and I would have to think twice about even today. What was really nice s that there was a Saucony Factory outlet up in Bangor, that had these shoes a lot more reasonably priced, when that closed, I had to search for a new Shoe to run in.
4. Asics Kayano
Asics were my second pair of running shoes, the old Blue Tigers were a great shoe and I wore them for Cross Country and Track in high school, when I wasn't wearing spikes.
Screen shot from http://www.racedaynutrition.com/?p=341
I wore the Kayano 11 for almost two years and really loved the shoe. While it is considered a motion control shoe, it felt lighter and more responsive than most of them and I put a ton of miles on this model of shoes (4 of them) over a two year period.
I found a special deal where I was able to pick up 3 pair of them for $50 each (the Kayano 13 was on the shelves), so I have had a total of 4 pair of the Kayano. The shoes changed and I didn't have access to those great deals and this shoe eventually priced itself out of what I want to pay for a running shoe.
5. Nike Air Presto
I have probably run in more Nike running shoes than any other shoe company. My Nike running shoes include the Waffle Trainers, Yankees, Equators, Shox (2 par), Pegasus (4 pair), Odyssey (gets an Honorable Mention), Nike Sock Racer (yes the Yellow BumbleBee shoe), Air Flo (which I still have and ran in for a while this fall), and Air Presto (3 pair).
Nike Air Presto
The Nike running shoes that were my favorites were the Air Presto model. I really liked the fit and feel of the Air Presto enough so that I purchased 3 pair of them before I couldn't find them anymore. I liked the no laces design, I have been slowed down more than a couple times from shoe laces untying. I used them for tempo runs, treadmill and track speed workouts.
6. Mizuno Elixir 7
This is the shoe I got free from Mizuno as part of their Mesamashii Project last year. I really loved the shoe, how light it was, the fit and most of all how they felt when I ran in them. The second week I had them I ran a 1:41:12 half marathon in them.
However, they definitely promote a heel landing form of running for me and since I really wanted to stop that style of running and move to a more forefoot landing, I stopped running in them.
I still have them, just in case I decide to give up on changing my form and just want to run. At 282 miles, the shoes look damn near new with hardly any wear on the sole or uppers. Even though I have had only one pair of these shoes, I know that I could put them on and run a marathon in them tomorrow!
I am only going to write about these 6 pair running shoes, in the interests of keeping this post to a reasonable length. The other shoes in my top 10 were/are good shoes, but had certain quirks or characteristics that I just couldn't get by or don't have enough miles on them yet to warrant a higher ranking.
The reality is that
I have run in literally hundreds of running shoes and have learned a lot about straight lasts, curved lasts, semi-curved lasts, uppers, insoles, midsoles, outsoles, blown rubber, hard rubber, velcro, laces/no laces, BOA lacing, pronation, supination, flat feet, high arches, motion control, dual density, EVA, Dillinger Web, racing flat, light weight trainers, track shoes, zero drop, stack height, ramp angle and all so many other "techno buzz words" that have been used to describe and market running shoes over the last 40 years.
Finding Pot of Gold
The problem with running shoes to me is, finding that perfect one is like trying to find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. It is elusive and most of us never find it - least I haven't.
What works great for someone else, doesn't always work at all for you. That means when you read a great shoe review by other runners or even me, it does not mean that you have the same good or bad experience they or I have had with those same shoes. It means that you have to do some of the leg work (yeah I know bad) yourself to find your perfect running shoe.
Therefore, we keep searching and chasing, always looking for that magic shoe that is going to let us run injury free for big mileage training.
My question to you is?
  • Which running shoe is your favorite running shoe of all-time?
  • Why did you stop running in them?
Now wear (I know where) is that damn new shoe review for the 2013 running shoes!!!!!  I just know that my perfect shoe is in there ;-)
See you out running.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Boston 2013 - I Ran Today


After a lot of thought I have decided to move some of best of my old posts from Aging Runnah and A Runnah’s Story blogs, primarily the old reviews, maybe a few of the better posts and race reports that I have written over the years. I have a feeling that at some point, my WordPress.com blogs are simply going to go away and I want to still be able to go back and read some of the stuff I wrote.

If you are reading this blog post, that is why it is has been re-posted here.

Originally posted on: April 16, 2013 - sorry I hit publish before I changed the date to 2013 and have corrected it.





I ran today - for Boston

I ran today in Blue and Yellow

I ran today in a t-shirt that means to me "unfinished" business.

I ran today and I cried tears of sorrow.

I ran today and I cried tears of rage.

I will run tomorrow and the days after.

I will train to run the Marine Corps Marathon.

I will do my best to qualify for the Boston Marathon there.

I will run the Boston Marathon someday.

I will that cross that finish line and cry - again.

I will remember 4/15/13.

I am a runner.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Boston 2013 - The Bastards Will Not Win - We Won't Stop


After a lot of thought I have decided to move some of best of my old posts from Aging Runnah and A Runnah’s Story blogs, primarily the old reviews, maybe a few of the better posts and race reports that I have written over the years. I have a feeling that at some point, my WordPress.com blogs are simply going to go away and I want to still be able to go back and read some of the stuff I wrote.

If you are reading this blog post, that is why it is has been re-posted here.

This is one of the ones that I definitely do not want to loose and yes it made me remember how I felt that day.

Originally posted on: April 15, 2013 

I accidentally published this on today's date, not 2013 as I wanted, I am sorry for the mix-up and have corrected it. I got too caught up in the emotions I was feeling back then and forgot to double-check the posting date.



This is not the post I want to write today, but it is the one that I will.

When I am stressed I write. 

It helps me sort things out and helps me get through what is going on, that is all this post is about.

I. WILL. NOT. LET. THE. BASTARDS. WIN.

After what happened in Boston today:

  • there are villains - who they are yet, we do not know, but we will and those who speak out to support these despicable acts are and will be considered our enemies. Remember that.
  • there were victims - people died, others were maimed or injured.
  • there were heroes - the emergency responders, volunteers and the runners.
  • there will be recriminations and finger-pointing on what we should have, could have or would have done. Instead think about what we need to do.

Yes I am sickened and saddened by the senseless violence against the innocents at the Boston Marathon today. However, the aim of this terrorist act, because that is what I believe it was, is to have us change how we live, view our world and have us believe that we are not safe, wherever we are.

I had originally planned on being in Boston today, so I could watch several people that I know finish the marathon, but at the last minute I changed my mind. 

Instead I stayed home, watched the start, got very motivated by it and the races and ran 10 miles today at a comfortably hard pace on the Rail Trail. When I got back home, I watched more of the race on on the live stream and the ballgame. 

Then all hell broke loose on Twitter and I turned on the TV to find out what was going.

The horrific events on the television screen transfixed me and I was following my Twitter feed. I couldn't look away. I was scared, angry and more than a few tears were shed, for the innocence we lost in the running community today.

When my wife got home we talked and hugged for a while and then she asked me if I still planned to run the Marine Corps Marathon?

I quietly answered. "I have to."

You have to remember she is very worried and more than a little scared. "Is it worth dying for?"

I simply said. "Yes"

We talked more, but I have to explain why I said this.

If I allow what happened in Boston, change my plans to run the Marine Corps Marathon, then the bastards who did this despicable act have won. I refuse to let them win.

It really is that simple.

I will continue to train and prepare for the Marine Corps Marathon and be there ready to run when it starts on October 27th and I will do my damnedest to qualify for Boston that day.

This is my way of honoring those who were at Boston today, not letting the bastards - win.

After all we runners are a resilient bunch and we won't stop.

This post isn't about me, it is to remember the events of this day.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Race the Runways 5K Reflection - 4/6/13


After a lot of thought I have decided to move some of best of my old posts from Aging Runnah and A Runnah’s Story blogs, primarily the old reviews, maybe a few of the better posts and race reports that I have written over the years. I have a feeling that at some point, my WordPress.com blogs are simply going to go away and I want to still be able to go back and read some of the stuff I wrote.

If you are reading this blog post, that is why it is has been re-posted here.

Originally posted on: April 6, 2013


Funny number for taking off on the runways ;-).

Today was the Race the Runways 5K road race and like they say, you race with the weather that there is that day. Well today's weather was the story - the sun was out, but there was a slight problem it was cold and windy -- very, very windy.

The cold would not have been bad, but the steady 20+ winds and higher gusts were pretty tough. Oh well that is just the way it works and you still have to smile and have a good time.

I warmed-up my usual 30 minutes before a race starts, I know it is early, but I find that I need to do it that early, because running helps to relieve my tension, plus it gets me moving around, which I need to do more than just sit around waiting for the start. At the 20 minute mark I went back out for another little warm-up run and to find a tree to stand behind, the lines were pretty bad .

The winds were at our back for the first 1.5 miles and I could have gone faster, but I knew that almost the rest of the race was into the strong headwind, so I "saved" something for that. Looking back with 20/20 hindsight, I wish that I had just gone out hard - lesson learned.

When one of the guys I know passed me, who I know is faster than I am, I got to thinking that I was going too fast and yes I admit it a little intimidated and just let him go, which really meant that I slowed down a bit (when I look at my pacing on the Garmin Site - I can see exactly when it happened). This is something that I have to work on. I know I can go faster and can't let that kind of thing happen in a race!



When we got to the turn-around - HOLY CRAP!!! No that isn't what I said, but you get the idea
:-). The wind was pretty bad at this point, but manageable. When I got to point where I had to go back across the stream of runners going the opposite direction, I lost about 5 seconds trying to get across, the oncoming runners were supposed to yield to the runners crossing - they didn't and it was like playing football, only trying to avoid contact ;-).

Once I got out on the runway - WOW! the wind was blowing hard throw this section and I was getting passed by a few runners - I just didn't have the mental toughness to run any faster. When we turned off the runway it was a lot better and I picked the pace up again, until we hit the wind again when I slowed done, while no one passed me once we got off the runway to the end, but I was toast more mentally than I was physically.

The wind just blew away my focus (I know that was bad - but it is the truth).

So how did I do? My official finish info is below:



For the conditions, I will take it, 7 seconds slower than my last 5K race, but I am happy with the results, but not happy with my effort or mental toughness - I should have done better. I felt fine after the race and could have kept running at that with no problem.

No I am not beating myself up, I am simply being objective about what I let happen during the race and have to work on fixing it. If I can't be honest about what I need to work on to improve, than I won't improve.

I ran in the Mizuno Ekidon's and they did great - in other words, I didn't distract me during the race and I didn't think about my feet at all during the race, which is what I want and expect from a pair of running shoes.

The biggest take-aways for me and this race are:
  • In a 5K go out hard and then run faster.
  • Just because I am running ahead of someone I think is faster than I am, doesn't mean that I am running too fast - I am working hard to improve and maybe it is working.
  • If someone does attempt to pass me, it doesn't mean that I have to let it happen, I can and need to fight back against the pass - whoever it is.
  • That I let the wind psyche me out too much and I lost my focus. I need to be able to race strong in any weather or race conditions - my competitors are facing the same weather that I am.
  • I need to work on that mental toughness aspect of my racing and running. It is definitely something that I will work on - if anyone has any ideas to help me with this I would love your suggestions or links to help me become mentally stronger.

One of the Charities that this year's Race the Runways supported was Veterans No Boundaries



Which has many of the same goals that Team - Red, White and Blue does to support our Veterans to be more physically active.

Overall, I was happy with my race today, but learned a lot about what I need to get better at. My experience at racing is really at the novice to intermediate levels. I have a lot to re-learn and that only comes from actually racing more.

I do have a feeling that this is one of those races that I will want to do again next year, but maybe I will do the Half instead of the 5K, we will see. It will depend upon my running goals next year. A big think you to the volunteers and all those that helped to make this race such a success in rather daunting weather.

This is what I came home to though :-)



Yes - he is just a little spoiled.