Sunday, October 22, 2006

Valuable Life Lessons

It certainly has been an interesting weekend. My daughter’s soccer team lost their first soccer game of the season; they are now 13-1-1, I failed to get in a 17 mile long run and I nearly got run over (again). All of this got me thinking about life’s little lessons; some of which your mom taught you.

1)Don’t count the chickens before they hatch: After going undefeated this season including winning a tournament in California, beating the #2 team in Arizona to win a 2nd tournament and beating the #1 team from Nevada to kick off the tournament this weekend, my daughter's team faced a team from Tucson this morning that they’ve never lost to. Once they beat these guys they would move on to the championship game and face the current #1 team in Arizona. The trouble is, no one bother to tell the other team that they weren't suppose to win. We played a lack-luster game, our friends from Tucson played an inspired game, we lost 1-0 and got to take the afternoon off. Our girls were stunned that they actually lost a game. I know this will be good for them in the long run. You need to take every team seriously and keep scoring until the final whistle blows.

2)Donating Blood does not improve your long run performance: I gave blood again on Thursday after my 10 miler. Nothing wrong with that. I’m O negative and feel it is my duty to donate a 4 or 5 pints a year for the greater good; however, this is the second time I’ve given blood since I increased my monthly mileage and I think that I’ve conclusively demonstrated that there is inverse relationship between giving up whole blood an running well. My Running Log entry for an 8 Miler I ran the day after donating blood in August read, “Legs very heavy, felt as if I was in 1st gear for the entire run. Waves of pain in my left foot. Big toe inflamed and arch started hurting on mile 4. Right foot also started falling asleep on mile 4. Right calf felt very tight through mile 3. Not a good morning.” My attempt to run a 17 miler on Saturday afternoon wasn’t much better. My pace started out around 9:00/mi, but after only 2 miles I started slowing down. The heat was taking its toll and I actually stopped on mile 9 and had a conversation with myself concerning stopping and walking back to the car or continuing on down the trail deeper into the desert. I won the argument (go figure) and pushed on. On mile 11, as I was heading back to the trail head, a friend called (only I will take a call 2 miles from my car in the middle of a desert – and deserted – park). After a few minutes of talking on the phone, I got back to running; however, after 12 miles, I’d had enough. It was getting dark and I didn’t have my head-lamp with me. Besides, all sort of critters come out at night on the desert and I didn’t care to run into any of them. The official distance: 12.46 miles.

3)Don’t mess with SUVs: This afternoon I just had to get out for another run. Despite the fact that the temperature was 86F I needed to get out and try to get at least one good run in this week. I set out at MP, but found myself sub 8 at the first mile. On mile 2 I’m running along in the bike lane minding my own business while trying to hold the sub 8 pace when a Red Mini Van, driven by a women talking on a cell phone, swerves into to the bike lane in front of me. She evidently saw my “deer in the head-lights” look and swerved back towards the traffic lane, I put up my right hand reflexively and hit the passenger side mirror with the tips of my fingers. I don’t recommend doing this. The fingers are still sore. I did finish out the run and finally felt like I was moving again. Average pace for the 5 miles this afternoon was 8:08/mi.

On the plus side of the ledger, my 19 year-old and her dorm room-mate drove up from Tucson to visit this weekend. It’s been rather lively in the house with them hanging around. Of course, they slept until noon today and were out for most of the afternoon, so I only saw them at dinner; but it was still nice to have them home.

Hope you all have a great week.

Training for the week:

Mon - Rest Day
Tue - 9 miles, Tempo w/4 miles @ 8:58/mi avg
Wed – Rest Day
Thr – 10.0 miles, Easy, 9.11/mi avg pace
Fri – 5.0 miles, Recovery, 9:42/mi avg pace
Sat – 12.5 miles, Long, 9:31/mi avg pace
Sun – 5.0 miles, Recovery, 9:19/mi avg pace
Sun – 5.0 miles, MP, 8:08/mi avg pace

Total mileage for the week: 46.4 Miles


Feminist Runner said...

Sorry to hear about your daughter's team losing, but on the plus side I've ready tons of articles about how sports have made kids (girls especially) so much more resilient than they used to be. Apparently, these kinds of losses make the big ones easier to deal with. Who knew?
Sounds like you knew what you were doing turning around on your long run. And it was still longish. As you proved in your near-death experience, there's always room for a comeback.

Thanks for the well wishes to my ITB. It's loosening up but these are weird injuries. I feel fine all day and then I feel seering pain. The days off are a killer!

Mike said...

It sounds like they are drawing the pints from your feet. Tell them to stop doing it that way!

Seriously, you're certainly doing the right thing by donating, though you will most likely have to find a way to work it into your schedule in order to keep up the Pfitz plan. You might have more success getting the long run in the day before you donate, then taking two or three easier days afterwards or breaking those days into doubles. I think the reduced blood volume and O2 carrying capacity hurts you more and more the longer you stay out, so short and slow might be the ticket. Again, easy to say, hard to do.

D said...

Bummer about your daughter's team losing. I was tired reading about your run after giving blood. I once gave blood and then went to TaeKwonDo class that evening. I was so dizzy I ended up sitting during most of the class - dumb!

You're still getting in quite a bit of running. I'm glad not to be dealing with heat anymore. Now I have to worry about ice and snow. It almost hit the freezing point here this am!

Anonymous said...

Wow, Phill what a week end. Really sorry about your daughters loss. I've always told my sons never ever underestamate the underdog!!you never know when it might be their turn to shine.

Sorry about your reaction to donating blood again. Follow Mike's idea and find a way to fit them in your training schedule.

That crazy woman. I've become a defensive runner these days, you have to be.

I hope the rest your week goes well

Jenny said...

Glad you're ok after your run in with SUV-woman. It's pretty shocking how little attention some people pay to the road when they're driving. I imagine that run-in really got your blood pumping!

Runningdoctor said...

I don't know, Phil. By donating blood, you are "training at altitude". If you donate blood on a schedule, just run your target races right before a donation.

Sounds like an event with the cell phone driver. Stuff like that can make me so mad; sounds like you took the high road.

Anonymous said...

Must agree about donating blood. I almost did this weekend, but want to wait until my Rx is figured out. I'm O neg too, so glad to read you feel like it is your duty to donate 4-5 times a year, none of my friends/family understand that. I feel that way too - I've cut down to 3 times of red cells & platelets as I had trouble with anemia from it... but as O negs, we are the emergency room blood. I'm o neg, family is O+. I tease them that I'm a giver and they are a bunch of takers. :) hee hee!

Be careful out there - hope your fingers stop tingling. Thanks for the notes about my race. :)

carmen said...

Great lessons. I'm sorry to hear that your daughter's team lost but I'm sure that this will make them work harder each and everytime. Can't always rest on your laurels.

Just reading about your runs post-blood donation made me tired. I get that feeling when I haven't fueled properly. Even now, I'm still trying to experiment and find what ultimately fuels me for long runs. I'm not quite sure if I would run after donating blood though. That's only because I am such a pessimist and feel that my body will take revenge for taxing it so much. Although, you are much more fit and stronger than I.

I admire your commitment to getting in the miles. What time are you aiming for in your marathon, Phil?