Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Gravel Training

Inspired by Todd Ragsdale, I started gravel training today. I only did it for about 10 minutes, but I can already feel the great effects! Not only that, I can't wait to do it again!

 Some small gravel with light litter

After running in place and also within the range of what you can see in the picture, I ran on some larger gravel. Surprisingly, that gravel didn't bother me. What does this mean? Most of my gravel and rock running issues are psychological. It may hurt a little, but no where near as much as I think. If I keep this up, along with some laps around Lake Zwerner, I'll be in tip-top shape for the 5K.

Monday, August 30, 2010


  • The sickness
I am feeling much better today. I can still feel some junk in my lungs and I am more tired that usual, but other than that I am doing great.

  • Upcoming Events
I am planning on running a 5K at Lake Zwerner. My time for this one will probably be a little on the slow side. Once I feel better I will start training there as much as possible. Right now, since I've been sick, my feet are a little more sensitive then they were a week ago. Fortunately, a few trips around the lake will straighten me right out.

  • New training techniques
I am going to try to implement this training technique inspired by Todd Ragsdale, the world record holder for the most barefoot miles in 24 hours.

  • Publicity
Last night I got an email from Matt Aiken, a writer for the local newspaper "The Dahlonega Nugget". He wanted to interview me about my barefoot running. I explained to him why I enjoyed it and why I chose to do it yada yada yada. He told me he would run barefoot with me sometime in the near future at Yahoola. We took some pictures at Yahoola and he went on his way(we took pictures at 13:30 and he had to have his article in by 17:00). So yup, I'll be in the newspaper Wednesday promoting Barefoot Running. Sweet!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired

I have had a cold since Tuesday. It started out as a sore throat and has moved to my nose and lungs. I have went to the doctor and they told me it was viral, but I am going back tomorrow since I have been coughing stuff up from my lungs. Maybe they will give me antibiotics or something...

I haven't been running because I have been so beat from this cold. I feel it is best not to. I think the only thing this taper will affect is my feet, which sometimes sting after some dormancy. I can probably get them back to acceptable shape after a few days though.

I probably won't run until at least Wednesday. I'm itching to, but know it is better than I don't.

Sunday, August 22, 2010


I woke up this morning wanting to do a nice trail run. The nearest trail is the not-so-barefoot-friendly trail around the lake.

I started off running, if you want to call it that, on some large gravel. This stuff was gnarly. The trail smoothed out to some scattered rocks, some of which were easy to avoid. Finally, toward the end, I hit some more gravel, which was a little easier to run on.

The worst things about this trail are the large rocks that shoot out of the down-hills. The flat spots on this trail are fine, but it was the hills that hurt.

Anyway enough whining.

As I was tip-toeing around I asked myself, "Why am I not running?" I tried to just go at a 10 minute/mile pace and I was surprised how easily I glided across the land. I felt really great. This feeling ended on the sharp downhill rocks, but the freeness continued for the rest of the run. There's just something liberating about running smooth.

I've been doing a mix of 1/4 Gatorade + 3/4 water. Seems to fill in my needed sugar and electrolytes(my light headedness the other day encouraged this).

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

First Day of School

Well obviously not my first, but at least for my Senior year of college!

When I started running I was not in school, or was at least taking a convenient online class. I didn't know how I would implement my running into my schedule. After registering for all the classes I needed I found that I had a 3 hour gap between my first and second class. Sweet! I can get some running in there!

The place I ran at yesterday is near the college, so I wore my running clothes to Physics. After class I kissed the girlfriend and went on my way. I wore my Crocs when I walked down there since the gym probably didn't want me walking around barefoot(this is where I store my stuff). I also wore the Crocs for the walk since I didn't want any wierd looks. I like to keep my barefoot running quiet, but when someone asks I give them the speech.

I ended up running almost 7 miles. It was hot out, but tolerable. The pavement didn't burn my feet, but I felt it getting warmer. There was one time when I realized I forgot to put on my BodyGlide, so I ran up the nutshell covered part of the trail and put it on some of my more discrete parts.

I drank my awesome milkshake before the run, this time leaving out the banana and putting in chocolate chip cookies. Oreos tasted better and seemed to blend better.

Well that's about it, off to do some homework!

Monday, August 16, 2010

A Change of Location

Great run today! I changed my location to a more challenging and interesting location. I decided to run on the paved trails behind the baseball fields today. Even though they are paved, there are still a large amount of obstacles to avoid!

As you can see, I only did one pass on the higher sections. This is due to the sticky substance on the ground + broken nutshells on the trail. Boy they didn't hurt the first time I stepped on them, but the second time forced me to stop and knock them off my feet. Anyone have any tips for keeping the crap from sticking on your feet? I tried getting them dirty so the dirt would stick first, but it didn't help.

After that predicament I decided to run back and forth on the one less hilly, but longer section of the trail. Then, I noticed another sidewalk that connected to the below parking lot. YEAH! A LOOP!

So, I ran the loop a few times and called it quits. I was sure I had hit around 4 miles. I was close, but RunKeeper said 3.35. I guess I need to get used to the steep hills and sticky rocks.

Now RunKeeper... I ran at the same location previously and RunKeeper failed me. I had 2 GPS devices in my bag. Both were iPhones. I think that caused the error. Anyway, this time it did great. I was really surprised how well it worked in the tree covered areas. With such accurate data, why bother buying a Garmin?

For breakfast this morning I drank a chocolate protein shake. My favorite recipe is as follows:
  • 1/2 serving of chocolate protein drink mix
  • 1 big spoonful of peanut butter
  • 1/2 a banana
  • A small handful of coffee beans(gotta wake up somehow!)
Now, I don't really like the banana flavor, but I think the nutrients helped me run better. I will try to run without the banana next time and see if I know the difference.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Proteins and Carbs

All of my runs so far have been fueled mostly off carbohydrates. This seemed normal to me until it was explained to me that the runners "wall" is caused by the body running out of carbohydrates and switching over to protein. This lead me to ask myself, "Why not just run off of protein all together?"

Next week I intend on trying just that. I am going to try to limit my dinners to something high in protein and drink my protein shake in the morning before a run. If I notice less crashing and better overall performance I may stick with it.

Does anyone have any experience with this? Am I understanding everything correctly?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


I have been in a rut lately. It has been so hot here, even at night, that I don't want to run. Today, after sleeping past 5:30(the necessary time to wake up and run) I decided to add a new element to my running, Cross Training.

I did (10,20,20,10) pushups, (10,20,20,10) situps, (10,20,20,10) squats, and (10,20,20,10) floor-humpy-things(lay flat on the floor stomach down and lift chest up), which build the lower back. I want to keep doing this on my no-run days, because it really leaves me feeling energized.

I also made a protein shake. I put my chocolate protein, a frozen banana, half an apple(I will drop this next time), a spoonful of peanut butter, and best of all, coffee beans! The coffee beans were my favorite part because they gave me a nice buzz that I love so much.

Every day I think about my 50K every day. I honestly think I can run it now, but I need to be confident. When I run it I don't want to stop running at all.

Also, I went to Myrtle Beach in South Carolina for 36 hours. 6 hours up, 6 hours down, slept in the car. By far one of my most memorable vacations. I played on the beach, swam, and tried to run in the sand. I had no problem with it(there is South Carolina beach on the 50K). I am not sure how well my feet will hold up on it though, since I didn't run far. I think if I just avoid the sharp shells and find a nice medium between the hard sand and soft I will be fine.

Until next time, Run on!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

I've Been A Bad Blogger

I haven't written in a while, but I have been running!

I have only ran twice this week, and they haven't been long, but they have been at a faster pace, which is something new for me. I have been leading with my hips a lot more and feel it has really made me a smoother runner. There were times today when I just felt like I was gliding. So smooth.