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.


Sunday, October 23, 2016

18Turkeys Outback

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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Good Night Everyone

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

Happy blogoversary!!! Hip, hip hurrah and all that other balderdash and hooplah.

My first blog post ever was on October 21, 2007.

A lot of words, thoughts, smiles, whining and even a few nuggets of wisdom have been passed along over the thousands of blog posts that I have been written over the last 9 years.

Usually, I would go on ad nauseum about this or that and write a long post about how much I have done as a blogger, you know that have diarrhea of the fingers stuff that I usually do, but in all honesty it is time.

Time to say goodnight and farewell to run blogging.

I have thought about this for a while now and as I continue to simplify my life, it seems like the right thing and right time to go ahead and just do it.

Someday, I might come back to blogging again, but probably not here and not as a dedicated runblogger, nope it would just be a small personal blog that doesn't any illusions or is that delusions of grandeur.

As I say good night, I will leave you with one last video

It comes down to time and how I want live it.

Good night everyone.

A Rainy Fall Day

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Wednesday, October 19, 2016


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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The Running Streak Is Definitely Over

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

Well now this has been an unenjoyable two days! To say the least I have not been running.

Sunday night I started to have a headache and felt, well a little off while reading on the couch and having a shitty football game on in the background. I went to bed fully expecting to be just fine.

Err nope

I woke up to the fuzzy head, chills, sweats and while I managed to survive a mile walk with Bennie, after we ate breakfast, it was pretty apparent that going to work was off the table. I wasn't feeling horrible, but the fuzzy head crap means that I wouldn't be worth nothing at work. At that point there was nothing to do but go back to bed. I slept through until 11:30 AM and got up to because there was no choice about losing a lot of weight.

Yeah that sitting on the porcelain queen and everything...well we have all been there, use your own imagination.

With the innards well emptied, the malaise settled in that can't get out of your own way feeling of not wanting to do anything, but sleep, run to the toilet (because you have to) and sleep some more. So that is basically how Monday went.

I went to bed and figured I would be fine today.

So of course things didn't go according to plan, Bennie's walk was shortened by the uncontrollable urge to purge, then the fuzzy head returned and when that pair teams up on me - I know the answer, call in again.

In 2 days this week I doubled my sick days taken in the last 16 months. So much for only having taken 1 day of sick time since I started work over a year ago!

Oh well, I think I am starting to get better, food still doesn't hold a lot of appeal, I eat and drink because I know I have to, not because I want to. Also, I figured out that at this point, it takes my body just about 4 hours to process and eliminate whatever I eat. Not fun, but lots of strange gurgling and other odd noises going on inside the digestive tract and definitely no farting. The gas is not true gas and that wonderful feeling constitutes a hard cheek squeeze and scurrying to sit on the PQ for a while.

A bit more rest today, errr sleeping on the couch with a couch-hogging mutt who thinks that it is territory and tries to push me onto the floor so he can stretch out like he usually does versus this sharing that he has had to put up with for the past couple of days.

Luckily there hasn't been a whole lot of the chills/sweats, nausea or any of that projectile vomiting that seems gang up on me when I go through this stuff.

Tomorrow I plan to be at work, if the porcelain goddess has stopped calling or at least I have a modicum of control over when I have to rush to see her.

Good times, are being had by all. Mary hasn't killed the wimpy husband yet, but I notice that she does find things to do other than wait on me and it is outside or in town. hehehehe

Seriously, though this one hasn't been fun and whatever it is that waylaid me, certainly is not what I would prefer to be doing. OOPS the PQ  calleth, maybe I will get to run later in the week.

After all, I was looking for an excuse to stop that run streak, but I can sure as hell think of a lot better ways.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

A Bit of Everything, But I am Running - Week In Review

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

At this point and time I am pretty sure that unless something even more unnerving happens, most of us have made up our minds on who we are voting for and the other issues that are on the ballot in November. Now if everyone would just shut-up and vote their choice, then move back to being Americans, not just Republicans or Democrats and never the twain shall meet. I for one will be glad when this election is over and we can move on, in whatever direction the majority of the voters has decided.

I know that I need a break from all the political crap going on around us.

Well the running streak is upta 24 days! I am running more consistently, while purposely keeping the mileage around 3-4 miles most days, with a few doubles during the week, ending between 30 and 35 miles for the week. My easy pace is naturally getting quicker as I get back in a semblance of shape, but still around that 9:00 minute pace. It seems to be working pretty well -- the leg continues to get better, although it ain't quite ready for prime time, err racing, I am getting closer.


Yeah, today was also a tough day. The Thomas College Terrier Trot 5K was this morning and I have a pretty good history there and really, really, really wanted to go and run it. I didn't. That stoopid Harold guy would have attempted to run faster and ignored that certain "pain" in the left heel to get a better time or place.

I KNOW it was the correct choice, but it didn't make it any easier, when at 9:20, I was talking with TheWife about how I should just be finishing up my warm-up and getting ready to run a hard 5K. Then at 9:30 I went out for my run with Bennie and had to work hard to not push the pace. However, during the run, the left leg reminded me in no uncertain terms, why I wasn't racing.

I had also thought about doing a longer run today too, but with how the leg felt this morning, I decided that that 4.0 miler was going to be more than enough.

Who knows maybe I am starting to mature as a runner and be more patient. Sssshhhh I don't want anyone to think that of me, after all I am a bit too young to be considered a mature runner. hehehe :-)

Running Shoes

I don't believe that my running better and the leg getting better is any freak thing (I am working hard at it) and the big turning point was when I moved back to my Mizuno's. No they are not low drop, super cushioned, ultra light, the most recent release or anything else -- the style of shoe that I thought I needed to run well in.

They are pretty much your traditional style of running shoe.

The other day on Facebook I was reading a comment from Sam W. about how it seems that moving to lower drop might help how your knees feel, but at the same time it seems to put more pressure on the Achilles/lower leg and cause issues there and over the past few years I have had my share of lower leg issues. It comes down to pick your poison and at this point and time my knees are feeling good and my lower legs are the weak link.  So going back to a firmer heel and higher drop seems to be what I need now.

Mizuno Inspire 11 - Simply one of the best pair of running shoes that I have run in. No fuss, no muss, I just run in them. The only thing I have not done in them yet is a double-digit run and I have no doubt that they will do just fine. I will probably attempt to find another pair for next spring, because I fully expect these to last right through the winter.

Mizuno Kazan 2 - A nice hybrid road/trail shoe that I am really liking so far. The K2's are not what I would consider a technical trail shoe, but they do everything I want. When it is muddy down back, they have enough grip to keep me upright, on the trails at UMA they have good grip in a variety of groomed trails and if I forget my road shoes, like I did on Friday, I can run 5+ miles on tar without any issues. They are coming up on 50 miles and Bennie already ordered a pair for my Christmas present - the price at $39.99 was just too damn good to pass up.

I decided on no faster running for a few weeks, so the Hitogami 2's didn't get any time on the roads or treadmill this week. I have a feeling that they will get plenty of treadmill time this winter. It just isn't the right time to use them -- yet.

Overall, a really nice week of running and being patient. I just need to keep it up.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

The Driveway

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The Backyard

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Friday, October 14, 2016

Bond Brook Road Loop - Surprise! - RunLog 10-14-15

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

I had some extra time built up, so I decided to use a little at lunch and do 5.0, instead of my usual 3.0 or so. The temps were in the lower 50's, low humidity, 15 mph wind out of the North, bright, bright sunshine. So it seemed like it would be a good day for a run.

First issue

Go out in shorts (that was okay, but the t-shirt wasn't quite enough when going against the wind. When the temps say 50's and you take out about a 15 mph wind (not a gentle breeze), that puts the real feel in my world in the lower 40's. Which made it feel pretty damn chilly going up that wind tunnel called Outer Civic Center Drive. I survived.

Also this route means that I have to go in front of the Marketplace aka Wal Mart and all the other shopping stores and go through the I-95 underpass that is not setup for pedestrian traffic. Those are those first little blips, as I race to get through there before the light changes and I have to fight traffic. There is a single track trail through some of the area, but you still are only a few feet from some real inattentive drivers.

In that short stretch from the Northbound off ramp to the Southbound on ramp, I counted 7 vehicles with their owners texting on the steering wheel - scary and yes, I moved over into the weeds a little further.

You can guess I what I think of texting and driving, talking on the phone is bad enough.

Don't frigging do it!

So yeah, I got through the construction site without too many issues, just playing dodge car to get by the Irving gas station, which is part of the reason I don't like this course that much. However, once I got by the KFC (gonna get a new light there), the running became a lot less dangerous. Still a lot of traffic, but a nice wide break down lane. I still don't know how that first mile split was that good, must have been all the adrenaline burgers I was eating from playing dodge car.

Then there was that nice gentle 15-20 mph breeze straight out of the north in my face, that is where I felt the coldest and I guess I wasn't the only one. There was this guy walking up ahead and as I was gaining on him, I noticed that he had on an orange winter hat and a parka, then as I got closer he had on boots and frigging ski pants!!!

Now, it was chilly, I gotta admit and being dressed in shorts, t-shirt and running shoes, probably wasn't quite enough, but damn, what is this guy gonna do when it gets cold, if he is dressing this way now??? I have a feeling that hibernation in a warm environment with a big comfortable couch will be his first choice. :-)

When I passed him him we both kind gave each other that WTF look and smiled.

Going down the Leighton Road it was nice to get out of the wind, but once I turned the corner the sun was right there, kind of that blinding sun that is just at the right level to annoy the hell out you and it was that way until the slight bend in the road - gave me a bit of headache, but hey it was also downhill and the wind was at my back. So I did pick it up a little.

Then I got a huge surprise when I rounded the corner onto Bond Brook Road. This was a road that I really hated to run on because it was very unsafe. No room to run on shoulders and then blind corners = not fun. So I avoided running down there for the past year, after I almost got wacked one day by a car on the blind corner.

When I turned onto the Bond Brook Road there was new tar and white lines with a nice 3-4 shoulder for pedestrians and bikes to be in!!! Instead of worrying about all the traffic and playing dodge car, I just ran - it was nice. The blind corners were still not great, but that white line made them more manageable. Augusta did that road right.

However, I did start to slow down a bit towards Bond Brook, the extra mile is something I am still not used to yet. Then when I turned back on the main road it is uphill all the way to the light and towards the end I just was running on empty.

I did manage to pick it up again on the path back into UMA to the finish, but it was a tough run, that I was surprised to have broken 9:00 minutes for my pace for the whole run.

The other thing that I did was I left my gym bag in the truck overnight and just went into work with it this morning. Ummm I had planned on running the trails at UMA and I bet you can guess which running shoes were in the bag - yep my trail shoes. The Kazan 2's. I figured I would go to the first and if things didn't feel good, turn there and go run the trails. Everything felt decent and the Kazan 2's did just fine on the roads. They are turning into a nice hybrid running shoe that I can grab for just about any run is nice and really be necessary when the weather turns nasty - probably sooner than later.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Nice Recovery Run - RunLog 10-13-16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

Okay a surprise early night at home and I still have half a brain, which means that I get to actually do a RunLog post - about damn time ;-)

Looking up towards the tar
After yesterday's faster run in the morning and then an easy UMA trail run in the afternoon, I decided to do just one run today and make that an easy one. However, I didn't decide that until I walked out the door for lunch and the legs just felt tired, so I decided to bag the double.

The weather was pretty good for running this morning, overcast mid 50's, but high humidity at 94%, so it was tough, but good sweating weather. Although, I did feel pretty good going out, I purposely kept the pace slower.

Bennie did his usual stops and I did my usual go slower up Stevens Hill then picked it up until we caught up with Mary and relaxed the rest of the way in.

The more I run in the Inspire 11's, the more I am liking them. So far they have had the right balance of cushion, weight and feel. Now I just have to get them out for a couple of double-digit runs to see how they do on the longer runs.

Looking back to my choice to not run a second time, it was definitely the right one. However, that I went down to Dairy Queen and had a small Butterfinger Blizzard probably wasn't the right choice, but it sure went down easy.

Run Streak is up to 21 days :-)

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Answering Some Questions - The Week In Review 10-9-16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

The weather was unseasonably warm most of the week and the fall colors were at their peak for Central Maine, but hopefully the heat wave is over and we can get back to those temps in the 50's.

Sometimes you have to push a little to get answers to the questions you have. That is what some of this week was dedicated to - answering those questions.

Next week is the annual Thomas College Terrier 5K race, one that I have run the last couple of years, done decently in both races and I needed to know if I could/should run it. On Friday, I picked up the pace a bit and found out that the left leg still gets pretty damn grumpy at those speeds if I run longer than a minute or so at faster paces, especially after I got done.

While things are better, I am not going to run the race, I know stoopid Harold to well and what he would do when the gun goes off, especially if things played out a certain way. So I will stay home :(.

The better part is that as long I stay around a 9:00 minute pace, things seem to hold together pretty well and I was even able get a run of over 6.0 miles in and not pay for it. Which means that I can work on my endurance base and get my weekly mileage up to where I would like it. I just have to keep the pace slower.

I will not argue that I want things to be different, but I have to work with the body that I have, not the one I want or used to have.

I did get a bit over 35 miles this week and for most of them they were right around that 9:00 minute pace that seems to be the sweet spot for me right now.

It would be nice to get back up to 40 miles a week and start doing it consistently again and then work on getting whatever speed is still available to an old fart down the road.

I. Will. Get. There.

The Inspire 11's are doing everything I have asked of them and are the shoes I reach for first whenever I get ready to go for just a run.

Although I am getting pretty impressed with the Kazan 2's especially when it rains down-back (slimy mud) they have enough traction to keep me upright and still be able to run longer on the tar. The thing that surprised me the most was that my feet were still reasonably dry despite being out in a steady rain for almost an hour. after today wet run. They are a very nice hybrid road/trail shoe that I wouldn't hesitate to use to run in nasty weather on just about all reasonable surfaces (ice, super rocky or deep mud are beyond what I would use them for) and for most of the distances that I now do.

I did try that go faster thing on Friday and the Hitogami 2's did what asked of them. Let me run faster, without getting in the way. They were comfortable and the only issue was that I was pounding my heels too much for the shoes. I just needed to lean a little further forward to force a more mid foot landing. I still miss the Ronin 4's, but the H2's are what I have and I don't see a pair of the Ronin's coming my way anytime soon.

The week itself was good and I am continuing to make good progress.

Overall, a very good week and one where the questions I needed to ask were answered. Even though I didn't like the answer, it is the way it is.

Looking down the Road

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Where Bennie spent the afternoon

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A Nice Training 10K in the Rain - RunLog 10/9/16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

So much for the nice day that was initially predicted, although for running, I actually preferred the weather we have. Light rain 52*F, a breeze out of the NNE, made it pretty nice. Although, the rain does make it tougher to see clearly, since I wear glasses.

Bennie had decided earlier that he wasn't too interested in being out in the rain (sometimes he is pretty smart), so I got to run alone. I figured that I would get in a nice 4-5 at an easy pace. It had been raining for a while, so I knew down-back was a bit muddy, not bad, but that slimy surface stuff that if you wear road shoes that you can quickly find yourself sitting in the middle of the road.

So I decided to wear the Kazan's -- good...no great choice!

They were perfect for the conditions, wet tar, wet dirt and surface mud down-back.

I really was not in a hurry and while I hadn't done 5.0 miles in a while, it was not really a question of whether I could do it or not. No, it was more how much the leg would bark during after that I was concerned with.

The Kazan's were doing what I wanted on the slime and then when I got on the tar over on Bartlett, I was really wondering how they would do during the longer run than I have done in them so far, especially on the tar. When I got to Notta Road (my 5.0 mile turnaround), EVERYTHING was feeling the best it has in a while, so I decided to keep going and do a 10K.

I had a nice 9:00 minute pace going and my splits were consistent.

Then I stopped to take a photo and just couldn't get the pace back and bonked on the hill. I guess I shouldn't have done the extra mile, but I haven't done 6.0+ miles since August 20th and needed to see how things would shake out.

The leg didn't bark at me during the run and the best thing is that as I write this it still hasn't barked too much. Which is huge progress!

The Kazan's surprised me with how well they did in the wet conditions and the slime down-back. However, the biggest surprise was that they didn't bother my feet at all and I forgot about them other than to think about how good they felt. They were even fairly quiet for trail shoes, which was nice.

Overall, a really good 5.0 mile run and the last 1.2 was meh.

Oh yeah the other part was that the two layers were one too many and I think that I did overheat a bit on the way back, which contributed to that meh feeling and loss of focus over the last mile.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Questions Answered - Not The Ones I Wanted - RunLog 10-7-16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

It has been a rough week at work, not any drastic or anything, we are just super busy as we get through the first round of exams for the semester. Which is always tough as students and staff get back into the swing of how things need to get done, to get things done :-).

That and working the 11-7+ shift has just left me brain-dead when I get home and certainly not upta doing any kind of writing.

Yeah, I have run all week and today and today, I wanted to do a little test to see if the leg could hold a 8:00 minute pace for a 5K and have one or two harder pops to see how I felt.

One problem - it was freaking hot. It is October and 75*F, bright sun and just a breeze, makes it uncomfortable for me to run faster even when I am running well, so my little time trial had that added degree of difficulty.

So how did it go?

I am not sure what happened at the start with the GPS, it is clear right there, so the watch dropped the signal or something??? During the first part I felt pretty comfortable and didn't feel like I was pushing hard to get to a decent pace, but with the heat I wasn't going to go after that sub 8:00 for the run.

However, when I got to the walkway by Jewett Hall, I pushed a little harder and got under 7:00 for most of the path and got a segment CR for it (pretty damn soft), but after I did slow down, but I don't know where some of those drops came from, I didn't feel as though slowed down that much at any point during the run.

I did have to kind of scratch my head, when I was going through one of the parking lots, a couple of people were walking and one of them looked at me and picked up her pace to cut me off to the corner and force me to stop/slow down. I picked it up a little and the other person elbowed and said "hey, lookout he isn't slowing down". The person stopped and let me go by and as I passed them, I looked and said "thank you." and got a grunt from the one that sped up.

After that I just kind of plugged along, without trying to push the pace and still didn't do too badly on my splits.

While I didn't get a single sub 8:00 today, I was still happy with the amount of effort it took to get these splits. The leg didn't get in the way while I was running, but it did let me know it was not real thrilled about running faster today. It grumbled a little for a few hours after, but feels pretty reasonable now, so it let me know it still is not ready for a race.

So next week's Terrier Trot 5K in Waterville is not going to happen at this point, unless I get a wild hair across something, simply because if I can run 8:14's without feeling uncomfortable afterwards, with my stoopid side and  the possibility probability of getting caught up in the moment, I don't want to loose the progress I have made over the past month.

The Hitogami 2's did well, but by the third mile, I could tell I had been heel striking a little too much for these shoes and needed to get up on the front of my foot a little more. Nothing sore, just a "knowing" that for these shoes I need to run a bit differently and will when I get back in better shape and the leg is fully healed.

Overall, considering how warm it was, the time trial answered what needed to be answered and while I am not totally satisfied with them, they are where I actually am.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Tired Legs - 10-3-16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

Yesterday's run, yeah I know, but this getting out of work between 7-8 PM is cutting into my blogging, pretty heavily. I just don't have the brain power or time left after eating supper after getting home and going to bed between 9:30 & 10:00 to write much.

It was one of those fantastic top ten days for running in my opinion, the sun was out, low humidity, temps in the low 50's -- you know one of those days you get outside and just enjoy the run.

Yeah, Bennie did too.

We had the typical Bennie run as you can see by the graph with a couple of vehicle intervals thrown in for good measure.

I was more concerned about maintaining a nice steady pace than I was doing anything faster. The legs did feel a bit heavy after my first 30.0+ mile week in about 5 weeks, so I wasn't into the push it kind of run.

The thing that I liked the most was that my first mile was 8:51 and my last 8:50, with some 9:00-9:30 in between. Which means that I am running more consistently.

I had thought about doing a lunch run at work, but the legs were still grumpy (just tired), so I went and got a badly needed haircut. That photo from Sunday, made up my mind on that - I definitely needed the haircut.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

A Quick Week In Review - 10-2-16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

My favorite time of year - Fall.

So much is going on in the local running community here in Central Maine this time of year, yet I have kept myself on the outside looking in.


Yeah, the leg has has been a part and I want to be very conservative coming back this time, working evening limits things sometimes, but mostly I have just been not into running with others. I am enjoying my runs with Bennie, but there are times when I just want to have more my time and it seems that is where I am now. Sometimes this lasts for a few weeks and other times it can last longer.

So nothing is wrong and at some point I will get back to being present again, but for now I am content with where I am - running solo. :-)

I went over 30 miles this week and didn't have any runs where I could not walk well afterwards, which is a huge step forward. The last couple of runs I even found a real stride, not just the old man shuffle that I have become so accustomed to enduring over the past few months. So the leg is getting better, now to make sure that I don't get too excited and do too much too soon and screw everything up.

The Mizuno's are all doing well, each pair had at least a couple of runs and seem to be part of the solution, not part of the problem. So instead of looking for new shoes and wondering what to hell I am going to do next or how my feet feel, I am just focusing on my running. Which is a huge step forward. So the Inspire 11's, Hitogami 2's and Kazan 2's are my running shoe rotation for the foreseeable future.

I did the big monthly summary yesterday, so this is just a quick look at this week and it is time to move on to October and have fun running.

Some Mud & An Actual Stride was Sighted - RunLog 10-2-16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

It rained a bit overnight, well actually it rained quite a bit overnight, which made my running shoe choice pretty easy for running down-back -- the Kazan's. The blogs I had read complained about how they didn't do well in wet weather and mud, which meant I wanted to know how they worked in those conditions and today would let me know a little better.

We started out nice and easy (which was MY plan - I already had 30 miles for the week and was just running for Bennie), that changed pretty quickly when a truck went by, before we even got to the dirt road. Bennie went into 4 paw drive and while I was doing my best anchor imitation, we still picked up the pace pretty good and then just as suddenly came to all stop once we got on the dirt road for a Bennie break.

When we got to where the Town Crew was working last week, we got into some serious muck, not deep, but enough to give me an idea on how the Kazan's would work. On the road mud, they did fine, although when I got into some deeper stuff, I could feel the shoes caking a little, but they cleared quickly, which is what I wanted. They will never be super mudders, but they are good enough to get by with where I typically run.

We had a couple more truck intervals, especially when Bennie was stopped and a truck suddenly appeared out of no where and flew by. He went into super-drive and I did become a little less of an anchor, just to see how things felt and then we just plugged along up the hill.

Once we got back on top, we did pick it up a little, the road was wet, it was a heavy mist and I wanted to see how the Kazan's felt - they did fine, no slippery feel and were reasonably quiet for the aggressive tread.

It was kind of nice to have run 3.0 miles and then be able to get back out of the old man shuffle (after the hill) that has been so much a part of my running this summer and actually have a stride.

It has been too long since I was able to have one, now to just keep it going.

Nice hair and can't see a thing out the glasses
I know the old man shuffle will be here permanently at some point, but I just want it to be later, much later.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

September 2016 - Month of Thinking

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

September was a month for running, thinking and moving backwards or is that forward. Time will tell.


It was warmer than usual for most of the month, well at least until Fall officially arrived and on that day, the temps dropped like a rock. Now it has been consistently in the 60's during the day and 40's at night, with a couple of lower temps thrown in for good measure. I . LIKE . IT. This is the time of year that I wait for and most years it is my heaviest racing schedule.

Not this year.

At the start of the month my plan was to run slower, more often and not as far, to make sure I wasn't stressing my leg too much or getting my delusions of grandeur going and getting me all worked up to get back to racing again.

I think I did pretty good, I ran 7 more times than I did in August and my average run was over a half mile less. The biggest difference was the .03 drop in the intensity of my runs. So I would have to say I accomplished all three things that I set out to do.

Making it to 113 miles for the month was a positive, but the biggest surprise was that I only took one day off from running during September. Probably the most consistent month I have had in a while. So slowing down and not attempting to run as far seemed to help with my being able to keep getting out there. Also I didn't try any tough trail running either, I stayed on roads or the EASY trails at UMA.

A good month of running.

Running Shoes

I have stopped experimenting, switching up, trying to impress myself and others and gone back to just running in my running shoes. I just don't have the initiative and drive anymore to go after the next newest, greatest running shoes. I will leave that to others who are far more qualified than I am and I will read their reviews and drool over the shoes that the brands are bringing out.

However, for me I am going back to what works best for my body and the way I actually run, not the way I want to think I run. Which means getting my feet, not my arse back in more traditional shoes and just let the body run, without attempting to frig around with too many things.

In other words, I am going back to how I used to choose my running shoes, before I became so "knowledgeable".

Not worrying about getting the newest, greatest, expensive, the shoes with the latest wow factor or biggest marketing campaign.

So I have gone back to running in Mizuno's. Mostly last year's models and those on sale.

Inspire 11 - Just about the entire month was spent running in Inspire 11's - yes the 13's are coming out, but the 11's were on closeout and are working well. Enough that my balky leg has improved a lot over the month of September. Sure I trained a lot smarter, but the 11's did not get in the way or stress the legs.

They are simply comfortable to run in and are the shoes I look for first, when I am going to run or spend a long day on my feet. I know you are not supposed to use your primary trainers for anything but running - get life if they are that comfortable, when I need to be on my feet all day, they are going to be on my feet, just the way it is -- running or not.

Hitogami 2 - Another closeout shoe that I started to try out at the end of the month. They are definitely, bright, loud, obnoxiously yellow and are according to Mary - Harold shoes!!! As far as running in them, a couple of short road runs and a treadmill 5K have not yielded any major issues or problems. I run well in them, but when my left leg tires I tend to slap the ground a bit, which cues me to tighten back up on my form a little.

The H2'S fit my feet better than the Hitogami 3's, which for some reason or other Mizuno narrowed the forefoot according to many blogs that I read and experienced for myself when I attempted to run in them.

So far the H2's have done what I want and are definitely a faster shoe than I am a runner.

Kazan 2 - I will be very honest, when I first tried them on, I almost sent them back. They feel a helluva of a lot longer than other size 9 Mizuno's I have worn - it could be that they have a straighter last than other models I have run in. I could have gone with an 8.5 or even an 8.0 and have them still fit. Also there was something rubbing the side of my right foot so much that it hurt just wearing them around the house??? I still do not have a clue what that was all about???

However, with Mizuno's my experience has been you don't give up on them based on the initial fit (unless it is too tight), they take 30-50 miles of wear to break into your feet and then they feel like old friends you never want to let go of. Just getting them to that point is a pain in the feet sometimes.

The strangest thing happened when I ran in the Kazan's the first time on Thursday though. I frigged and farted around with the tongue, tried stretching the sidewall of the right shoe and something worked because when I ran in them - no issues. It was strange, here I was in the locker room wondering if I wanted to even dare a run in them or not and once I got past the first 100 yards they settled in and felt fine...very strange.

So now that that that issues was resolved how were they to actually run in? Good.

They felt softer than the Inspire 11's, but with more ground feel -- if that makes sense. Good traction on the UMA trails, on the side of the road down-back where they had just done a lot of work on the road and the most surprising thing was that they were quiet on the tar and allowed me to get up to speed without any problem.

As trail shoes go, they do not have a rock plate, so that kind of limits them on rocky trails (I tried running on/over bigger rocks down-back and very quickly found out that wouldn't be a good thing for the long haul. However, they felt very nimble and sometimes avoiding rocks is a good thing, so I would probably use them for up to moderate trails or on something that I knew wasn't too rocky.

However, I didn't really get the Kazan 2's for heavy duty trail running, I got them more for winter running in Maine. That snow, slush, mush (muddy slush), kind of running that I seem to do from late November to March. I have a feeling that the extra room will allow for the winter weight merino wool socks that I prefer in single-digit weather, the traction should be fine and I don't really need a rock-plate for that kind of running.

My initial thoughts on the Kazan 2's are that they are a nice hybrid trail/road running shoe that can do well enough on roads, moderate trails and be my primary outside running shoes during the winter. I can't ask for anymore than that.

The Nike Lunar Glide 7's and Mizuno Elixir 7's are just there for comparison, I don't run in them anymore and just use them to wear to work. Although if I had to I wouldn't hesitate to run a few miles in either one.


If you have made it this far, I have a feeling this is the biggest thing. It was one of those weeks at work that just fries your brain and makes you scratch your head and go mmmmm. No nothing really bad happened at work, but it was a tough week on the old noggin (I wasn't the only one, so I don't feel too bad). However, it is the week that I realized I really do not enjoy working in the evenings.

The getting home between 7:30 & 8:30 just ain't my cup of tea.

The problem is that I do enjoy what I do at work, believe that it is important and the people I work with make it easy to go in everyday. Plus going in at 11:00 does allow me to get a full work-out in with Bennie and then a quick one at lunch, so that is a big advantage of the schedule I have now.

However, I enjoy my evenings with Mary and don't like eating supper between 8 & 9 PM and then attempting to wind down to go to bed at 10:00. I just do not relax from things at work that easily.

An opening was advertised in another department and the hours are 7:30 to 4:00 and I applied for it. I am almost afraid that I might get it - if I am what they are looking for. You know that here I am 59 and not the typical applicant for something like this. Sometimes you gotta go backwards to be happier, most people start where I applied and here I am attempting to end it there.

September was a good month and progress is being made in several areas.

Life is strange sometimes.

No, Yes and Kazan 2's - Yes it all makes sense - RunLog 10-1-16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

I really, really wanted to go over to Quarry Road this morning and run in the Colby Invitational Cross Country race. To be honest I just didn't dare, the left leg is still only at about 60%, improving but tender (a lot like me as I get older) and while I can run, running faster still causes problems some problems when I run faster for longer periods and especially after.

How do I know, well yesterday's treadmill session reminded me that race pace ain't kind to the leg and while I only tried it for 0.1 and EVERYTHING felt good while running it...afterwards was not as much fun.

Which is still progress, because I was able to walk without too much of limp and then run this morning, but I also know Harold and he can be, well let's be honest, he is stoopid when the gun goes off.

So I stayed home. Boo hisss, but the leg is coming along, so hopefully I will be able to do more than whine in a month or two.

We did go for an easy 4.0 miler though this morning and while the leg was not really sore, I knew it was there. It is almost like there is an adhesion in there that needs to let go and then everything will be just fine. I have plenty of strength in the leg and can toe off well, (doing all those leg exercises has helped), until the leg gets tired and then things get sore.

It was the typical Bennie run, but it was the second run in the Mizuno Kazan 2's and was much the same, they felt good, though a little too long compared to other shoes I have.

I did test them down-back and they did great in the loose dirt on the side coming back up Steven's Hill, the smaller loose rocks and stuff you find on dirt roads didn't bother, but running over bigger rocks was painful without a rock plate.

I wouldn't want to run on scree or some place with lots of sharp rocks, it would beat the hell out of my feet, traction wise they were fine. They did fine on the tar sections of the run and would seem to be a good choice for what I want them for primarily - winter running.

Now to get them out in nasty weather, with the merino winter weight wool socks (the shoes will fit better then) and see how they perform.

Good recovery run, but I do wish that this leg thing would resolve itself sooner rather than later, but it is looking like the later is continuing to win this battle. :-) Keep moving one step forward.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Gunshy Bennie - RunLog 9-26-16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

Bennie's least favorite time of year - hunting season. The weather might be great for running outside, but the guns of September started this morning...opening day of "duck" season. It started at 6:03 AM with a fusilade of 12 shots and then random 3-4 every so often until around 9:00.

Bennie turned into shakey baby and although we tried to do the first walk, about half-way down the driveway, we could hear the shots again and he wanted nothing to do with being outside and we headed back to the house.

I was raised in a hunting household, was a hunter for many years myself, so I understand the hunters and what they are out there doing. However, it does break my heart to see my little buddy be so scared by the noises he doesn't understand or like. Luckily, up here the gunshots only mean the opening day of another hunting season. In other parts of the Country, it seems as though they have a lot different meaning and a much more sinister one.

Especially, as we get closer to an election where there are really no winners based on the candidates who were chose by both all the political parties. It almost seems that outside forces and special interests are intent on influencing the election in the manner they believe will give them the best opportunity to move forward with their agendas and create more open divisions within our Nation.

So sad, at a time when we should be coming together, we are moving even further apart.

How was the run?

Once a truck went by us down by the Steven's, he was fine and turned into turbo Bennie who wanted to get it over with, but the old anchor at the other end of the leash, wasn't able to keep up and became...well the anchor. So there were 8 Bennie stops, some a lot longer than others and when the shooting started again down in the flat, he did pick it up a little again.

However the temps were such that it was a good run to have a couple of layers on and I didn't take my gloves off until we were done.

Overall, a pretty decent run, but at the same time I hope that those gunshots I continue to hear are simply hunters popping at critters, not humans shooting at humans.

It is time to come together and unite as a Country, because splintering into special interest groups that are doing their own thing is not working and plays into the hands of those who would like to bring us down to their level.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Fall is Definitely Heah - Week In Review 9-25-16

This post was written for and first appeared on One Foot In Reality.

First it officially became fall and the temps cooperated. It was almost as though someone (Mother Nature) realized what the date was and flipped the switch. The temps have dropped like a rock with the highs being in the high 50's/low 60' and overnight getting down into the 30's and 40's. Yep its fall.

Which means that it is also time to do the seasonal clothes change. Boy I didn't realize how many running tights, long sleeve tech shirts, pairs of gloves, merino wool socks and all the other accumulated fall/winter gear that I had packed away. Which is a good thing, it means that I don't have to go get anything right off.

Although I did have to get rid of some of my summer t-shirts and a long sleeve jacket shirt - the runner's funk was just too nasty, despite attempts at hanging on the line in the rain, after washing a couple of times. Yep it was BAD smelling enough that I could even smell them - that is damn bad.

I ran in something else other than the Inspire 11's, not because they are causing any issues, but because I just couldn't wait any longer.

I got a pair of Hitogami 2's in yellow/black colorway and they have been in the closet since the 13th. Sitting there waiting for me to run in them...I have been good and was pretty good during the run. I didn't go overboard on the speed part and still was able to run today, so I was good enough. Stopping at 2.0 miles was just about right. The H2's are going to be my speedy shoes and also the ones that I plan to do most of my treadmill work in.

Speaking of the Inspire 11's they just continue to work. No fuss, no muss, just run.

Definitely better than I expected and I know that I will pick up at least one more pair between now and Christmas -- for next year. I am only doing about 100 miles a month and I can see Inspire 11's getting a LOT more miles and if I am not using them for the treadmill (which I have a feeling might see a lot of time this year), they will last through the end of the year at least.

I figured that since the Inspire's have done so well and the first run in the H2's were so successful, I might just as well get a trail shoe that compliments what I am using. So I ordered the Mizuno Kazan 2's and hope they fit as well as the Inspire 11's do -- only on the trails. Time will tell on them.

That gives me my 3 shoe rotation and I hope it works well moving forward.

Yes, I have gone back to running primarily in Mizuno's. At this point in my running life, I am not blogging to review a the newest and greatest running shoes, I am just running in what works for me where I am now and attempting to find them for the best (read cheapest) price possible.

Which usually means hold-overs and models that are 1-3 years old. So if you are looking for the newest running shoes there are a lot better choices out there. Personally, I recommend Sam Winebaum at Road, Trail Run and Thomas Nueberger at Believe in the Run, they do a great job on their reviews and give honest reviews of the shoes they run in. More on this in a different post that I have planned.

So how was my running this week?


As long as I keep running slower and not attempt to recreate any land speed records or run more than 5.0 miles the leg seems to hold together pretty good. If I do go a bit quicker or attempt to run 4-5 miles too many days in a row, I pay for it and have to throttle back.

So right now I am still in the 3 steps forward 2 steps back, but still making progress phase.

I ran 27.3 miles this week, which is just about the recommended 10% after last week's 25.4, so I am staying on the 10% rule and as much as I would love to run more, I think for now that is almost the max for a week's total, I might be able to consistently run 30, but for a while that will be my goal.

The other thing is that I am keeping the intensity of the runs much more reasonable, primarily in Zone 1 or around 0.85. Although I did a couple of miles at a bit quicker pace than usual during that first run in the Hitogrami 2's, but it was inconsistent and I backed off when I could feel the leg starting to get grumpy. Even so I was still able to get a sub 8:00 minute mile for the second one, without breaking anything.

Overall, a very good week and one that has me feeling more positive about the direction of my running.