Sunday, June 28, 2009

New Running Partner

She's barefoot too.

Her name is Zoe and she's a purebred German Shepherd. Her first family couldn't take care of her anymore so we swooped in and scooped her up. She's smart cookie and a total sweetheart. Not to mention a knockout. We get comments on her beauty all of the time.

She weighs about 50 lbs and is 5 months old. Yikes! She hasn't had any I'm seeing to that. I've started her off on some basic obedience stuff and heeling and all that. Next Sunday we'll be going to an official training class that is just for German Shepherds! She's so willing to please and learn, it will be great.

She's a great running partner so far, she's even heeling at a run. She hates any kind of heat tho - so we have to get out there early, which is great motivation for me. She is mouthy when she gets excited or bored - I'm working diligently with her to not use us as chew toys - that needs to stop. She sleeps very well through the night in her crate.

There is no way on God's green earth that I'll be able to run the Pacifica 50k next weekend. Oh well. Life is just getting in the way. I have too much going on for me to be able to put in the mileage to do ultras right now. I'm going to take a break and re-evaluate my goals and what I can do happily, without stressing myself out needlessly.

I am thinking of taking my running to a different level, to do it for a purpose. I've always been interested in search and rescue and part of my thinking in getting Zoe was to go out for volunteer search and rescue with her. Our obedience trainer has ties to the local groups - so we'll see where this goes.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

A New Barefoot Running Partner

This morning may have been my last run alone on my neighborhood trail. This afternoon I'm going to visit a possible new doggie running partner and buddy. I don't want to jinx it, so I'm not going to go into details about him...but it does look promising.

It has been far too long since I've had a doggie running partner/buddy. If we end up getting this boy I'll sign up for the local Mutt Strutt in August. He's reported to be an excellent running parner! I promise to post pictures of him ASAP if this ends up being an adoption.

My run this morning was up in the local canyon on the trails in my Vibrams. It went well and I feel great right now. It was about 5-6 miler. I still go through a little bit of an ajustment period on the first 10 minutes out before I really hit my stride. My left forefoot was a little sore from where I stepped on a big rock over the weekend (in shoes btw). I was a little bit worried about that. But the soreness went away 1/2 way through the run and now post-run it's all gone. Guess I just needed to work it out.

Have a lovely sunny day!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Vibrams at the Track

I can now report that VFF's work just fine at the track too. I ran my intervals faster than usual in them, a full ten seconds faster for my last 400 than any other I've run this season. And my hammie is behaving fully, even acting normal!

I think my new running style is workin' some scar tissue where my leg was operated on. It just feels "funny" there, almost itchy. No pain in the knee joint or anything, just wierd pulling under the skin, very shallow. I only feel when I'm not running. I'll keep my eye on it but I'm not too worried.

I've starting making my hurrache sandals from a kit that I got from Barefoot Ted. I have one done, now I have to lace up the other one. I'll take 'em for a spin in a day or two. Pictures to come!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Longest Vibram Run Yet

I did about 11 hilly miles.
And it felt really great. One thing that continues to astonish and amaze me is that I have NO muscle soreness. If I run in shoes, and run hard and long...I'll get the usual stiffness afterwards. Especially after I get up out of the car after I've driven home from the trail. But yesterday and today...nothing! I haven't read anything about this barefoot phenomenon anywhere else...but in this experiment of one there is no muscle soreness. Infact, they feel better than just not sore...but almost massaged by the run.

The only "problem" I've encountered is a little bit of fluid accumulation above my right knee. No pain whatsoever though. And the puffyness went away overnight. I'm thinking it's a protective reaction to the change in stride and hopefully not a problem at all. My right leg is definitely my weaker leg, I broke my tibia a few years ago so I think that its relative weakness may be causing this. I'll keep an eye on it and if anyone has any suggestions please leave a comment!

Saturday, June 06, 2009

The Point of No Return

Running in shoes has become completely uncomfortable. It seems that all of the restrictive, controlling fixtures in running shoes just throws off my stride too much, and that big heel in the back gets in the way!

Whenever I run in shoes now my hip tightens, my hamstring tightens and I feel little twinges in my ITB. When I run unshod I feel springy and loose afterwards. Imagine that! Feeling looser and better AFTER a run! I'm also faster barefoot. I can't explain why and I don't want to imply that you would be faster barefoot, but it's happening for me. I think it may be the more efficient form and faster leg turnover.

I finally broke the news to my hubby that I've been running barefoot. I thought he might flip out, thinking I was nuts or something...but he's totally intrigued and supportive. That makes things easier.

So it's cold turkey. I've run 10 miles in the past two days unshod (except for my vibrams!). I'll be doing a trail run tomorrow - I'll see how that goes. As the mantra goes with the barefooters - listen to your body and follow its lead. I won't run into pain I'll just run as it feels good.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Our team, The Venetian Skunks, ROCKED the relay!

We won 1st place in our division by 4 hours and we were 7th overall out of 105 teams.

I did not wear my Vibrams. I ended up wearing my Nike Frees. I didn't want anything crappy that I might do like totally bonk, fall off the shoulder of the road, trip on a rock, etc to be blamed on my VFFs. I want to ease my friends into my more barefooted self, ya know?

But I'm headed out for a run right now in my VFFs. Can't wait. I did a little run on Sunday in shoes and it sucked. I was still sore of course but it sucked nonetheless. We'll see how this one goes.