Friday, February 1, 2008

Scratch Bear Creek and onto Memorial

6.02 miles, 46:16, 7:41 pace, Max HR = 162, Avg HR = 154, Avg Cadence = 90

I ran an errand out to West Houston today. I don't normally venture outside of loop 610, and even more seldom do I go outside of Beltway 8 except to drive to Louisiana. But since I was out there I decided to run my 5 miles at Bear Creek. It's a large park near Eldridge Parkway and I-10 for the suburbanites. After driving though the park, I decided to pass on the two mile blacktop jogging trail and go to the crushed granite 3 mile track at Memorial instead. There were a surprising number of people out there at 11AM on a Friday.

I configured my running watch to monitor real-time cadence. As normal, it wasn't an issue to keep my number at 90 early in the run, but I had to make a conscious decision to keep the turnover up once I got tired about four miles into the run.

After the run I hit the core exercises, including two sets of 20 "perfect pushups" with my feet elevated about 18" off the ground. The pushup apparatus probably doesn't really make the pushup better, but it's a gimmick to make me do pushups and it works on your grip as well as your pushups, so I'd call it a success. I got my set for $20 at Fry's, and I've heard you can talk them down over the phone if you call in your order directly to the company via the late night TV commercials.

It's been a while since I had a tough core workout, and I could really feel it immediately afterwards. After my run I treated myself to a Jamba Juice fruit smoothie. If you've never had it, drop what you're doing right now and head to the closest franchise.

Through no direct effort, I lost almost 10 pounds over the past four days. I've been taking light meals, and eating less during some lunches because I've been too busy to leave my desk. But almost all of that weight loss is water weight, since I woke up this morning very dehydrated from my late night run yesterday. Regardless, I'm back to my racing weight relatively easily. Let's see how my upcoming weekend of Mardi Gras in New Orleans affects that! I expect to eat my body weight in Danny and Clyde's Roast Beef Poboys, the greatest in the world. I also hope to be able to get in a "long" run of 10 miles on Saturday morning before the festivities kick off. We shall see.

I would be remiss if I failed to mention a fact. I've never experienced the "runner's high" while running like so many people advertise. Maybe I run too hard or too fast (or not hard/fast enough), but I've never experienced it DURING a run. But sometimes all the elements fall together and I feel really great for about an hour or so AFTER my run. Today was one of those cases -- it was a good day. I didn't have to worry about work (I'm off today), or running at 10PM because it's the earliest I could find time, and I was in no rush to be anywhere. Afterwards I rolled back the sunroof of the car and reflected on how good life was at that very moment. I guess that's my runner's high.

141.5# 10% body fat

half mile splits with average cadence:
3:58 (91), 3:48 (92), 3:46 (92), 3:50 (91), 3:53 (90), 3:52 (89), 3:49 (89), 3:51 (89), 3:53 (90), 3:42 (90), 3:56 (89), 3:49 (90)

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