Rash Ramblings

A runner once, an explorer always!

Category : Milestone

03/07/11     Today I wasn’t sure how far or how fast I could run as yesterday I completed a run of a little over eight miles. This was the first time in over twenty years that I covered a distance that long all in one run. I felt amazingly good after the run, but was afraid what I might feel like on waking up this morning. I was stiff and sore and I originally thought I might only do two miles this morning. Instead I decided I would set out on my six mile route and go as far as I could. I made it all the way. I made it to the halfway mark at 28:47 and so I figured I would finish in about 57:30. All through the last part I felt like I was in slow motion, so I was pleasantly surprised when I looked at my watch after I finished and it said I had completed this loop in 56:39. That meant I had run the second half in 27:52…almost a minute faster than the first half.

It is now getting to be crunch time as the Capitol 10,000 is only about three weeks away. I really don’t have a good feel as to what kind of time I can run. I estimated my time at 44:00 on the entry. I WANT to run around 38:00. Thirty years ago I was down around 33:00, but I was also at least 40 pounds lighter. Some of how I do will be determined by how much more weight I can shed before then. A lower weight and my ability to get into a more efficient running form will be the big determiner on how close I can come to my goal. I originally set as my goal to finish in the top ten in my age group at the Capitol 10,000. The question will be…”can I do it this year or will I have to wait another year?” At this point I am not even sure if I will want to run the Capitol 10,00 again next year. So, right now I just push on and wait to see what unfolds.      Thu  56:05.43     Fri  17:31.64     Sat  34:21.39 W  Sun  76:04.00     Mon  56:39.06




We are given obstacles and trials so that we have to depend more on God and in this way our faith will be increased.

As I go out on my runs I make little observations that in my own mind are now truths. I will run up to an intersection where cars are stopped and rather than demanding or taking for granted they will stop or remain stopped for me, I choose to run behind them. It puts the control in my hands. I know I am no match for any vehicle when I am on foot. This fact is also true for bicycles.  A lot of the bicyclists demand the road is theirs, too. I can agree with that to some point, but at the same time I understand that these motorized vehicles are much bigger and heavier than me and someone doesn’t have to be doing something intentionally for me to get hurt. I also do not necessarily agree with these “hard core” cyclists that think that their right overrides the rights of others when they tie up traffic because they cannot maintain the posted speed limit. I chose to stay out of the way of these vehicles whether on foot or on bicycle. It makes more sense to me to take the secondary roads that are less travelled by the motorized vehicles. I take it as my responsibility to stay out of their way, because I like living and because I know I can trust me.  As for the others out there, I have no way of knowing their thoughts and/or distractions. It only takes a second to totally change what is important.

I am now looking at this running thing differently than I did when I began again to run. I thought I would have a little pain and adjustment as I tried to get going again, but it really hasn’t gotten better or gone away. It may have changed a little. There are days I can barely get out of bed and when I do, I;m not sure if I’ll be able to make my way to the bathroom, much less be able to go for a run. Many days I have just decided I’ll go out and see how far I can get. Most of the time on these days, I feel like hell for about a mile then everything starts easing up. It just goes to show that you don’t really know what you can do until you try. I don’t know what the road ahead holds for me. I believe I was inspired to get back on the road and I am not sure where that will lead. I set my goal to finish in the top ten in my age group at the Capitol 10,000. If I was to look at that realistically today, I would have to say it looks more probable in 2012 than in 2011. I am not giving up though. I can’t say what God has got in store for me and if it is to be, He can make it possible.  As in other aspects, it is for me to just to plant the seeds.

Also, today I have reached another milestone. I have not missed a day in about two weeks. I always weigh just after my run. Whether that can be agreed to as the best time to weigh, I do not care. It is just my intention to weigh at the same time under the same conditions so that there is some sort of constant. Today, I weighed in at 199.4 pounds. This is the first time in probably 20 years that I have have dipped below 200 pounds. This has not been an overnight thing either. I am peeling the pounds away in onion skin layers and I am realizing it is not just the exercise. The whole lifestyle has to be attacked…exercise, eating habits and even the amount and quality of rest I am getting. I feel better about the change. I wasn’t happy looking at that guy in the mirror. When I looked in the mirror, all I could think was, “Who are you and what have you done with my body?” As it is, I will keep on with this new routine and look forward to gaining the new insights and hopefully, a better quality of life.     Wed  18:04.70     Thu  17:34.06     Fri  20:00.07 W     Sat  45:17.48     Sun  17:17.31     Mon  45:59.02     Tue  46:19.49




Really right now when I think of my running quest, I can only think of more. That is what I’ve been thinking this past week or so anyway. It was for that reason this morning I started my next level. I will run longer runs in the morning. I am doing this because it is the only way I can guarantee it will happen. Too many things can happen after the day has started that can get in the way and stop good intentions.

I am still running everyday. I was thinking about running a race on Saturday, the Superhero Obstacle Course Race  http://www.247superhero.com/  , but I left too many things to the last minute and decide against it. Then I thought I would run a longer run  Saturday afternoon, but things came up and I ended up not running at all on Saturday. I then decided I would do that run Sunday afternoon, but after I gave blood Sunday morning I thought it might be better if I didn’t. I got back into it Monday after two unexpected days off.

I have to up the ante now to advance to the next level. There has been some stagnation and it seems to carry over into this writing, because I just don’t seem to have anything come to mind when I’m just coasting. I need that additional pressure it seems to get the thoughts flowing. We’ll see how much faster improvement comes now. This morning, I at least doubled the distance because it took almost three times as long and I know the pace was not that much different. I am ready for this new challenge.  thur 17:46.12  fri 18:14.44  mon 17:44.63 tue 18:33.81 wed 48:49.65


The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

How you respond to the challenge in the second half will determine what you become after the game, whether you are a winner or a loser.
– Lou Holtz

The only use of an obstacle is to be overcome. All that an obstacle does with brave men is, not to frighten them, but to challenge them.
– Woodrow Wilson

I try to challenge myself as much as possible, as often as possible.
– Alan Dean Foster



It is the same day as the previous post and I did,as I alluded earlier, put in a second run today. I am ready to get this show on the road. Also as part of this phase two, today when I stopped for lunch, I got a single meat hamburger with no cheese, fries and a unsweetened tea (the only kind I would want anyway). We’ll see about further tweaks to the diet. I know when I was running before, there were things I didn’t eat then that I do now that could go away again. It won’t be a thing either that I am just keeping myself from eating them, but that I just loose the desire to eat them or at least eat them much less frequently.

The run was at a decent pace for me right now. It was very sunny and very warm. I felt good although a little stiff from pushing it some this morning. It was somewhere around four miles and I finished in 34:02.14. I post this even though I am a bit embarrassed in my per mile rate. I am doing this with every intention of getting as close to the times I was getting in my 20’s as I can. I don’t know if it is possible, but at the same time I don’t know that it is impossible. That would mean I would have some training runs with six to seven minute per mile pacing. So time will tell and I can only try to reach as far as I can and see where that leads.


I’ve come to believe that all my past failure and frustration were actually laying the foundation for the understandings that have created the new level of living I now enjoy.  – Tony Robbins

Start early and begin raising the bar throughout the day.
— Bruce Jenner

To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.
– Steve Prefontaine

You have to wonder at times what you’re doing out there. Over the years, I’ve given myself a thousand reasons to keep running, but it always comes back to where it started. It comes down to self-satisfaction and a sense of achievement.  – Steve Prefontaine



I chose to start my birthday off with a challenge. It is something I have been thinking an=bout for a while. My goal was to run to the Big Spider and then back home. I had two things going against me from the get-go. I had never run the trails to the Big Spider (especially not in the dark) and this was going to be the longest run that I had done in over 20 years. The good thing about this day was we had a little rain last evening so things had been cooled down somewhat.

The biggest problem I had was deciding which fork to take when the trails branched off. It was nice to get away from the streets for a run. Mostly I heard my feet crunch, crunch, crunching on the crushed granite trails, although there were interspersings of concrete. On the way out, about two-thirds of the way to the Big Spider, I did have the thought go through my mind, “I wonder if I will really be able to run all the way out and back. As I was getting closer, I kept thinking the Spider would pop up, but it didn’t. Then just as I was starting to think I missed it, there it was. I ran up and between the legs as I turned to head home. That was fun…halfway done.

Giant Spider Sculpture

This twenty-three foot high giant spider, named Arachnophilla, is located at the Mueller Southwest Greenway in the Mueller development at the old airport. The sculptor is Dixie Friend Gay, an artist from Houston. [Julie Dean, 11/20/2009]

From: http://www.roadsideamerica.com/tip/23592

I felt pretty good on the way back. I did have some pain in the bottom of the wide part of both feet, but not enough to really affect me. I made it all the way back to the house without stopping any. I felt good and I had been running for over an hour (1:03.36). After I got back home, I was curious to see if I had lost a lot of water weight, because back when I was running my best, I could weigh before and after a run and sometimes there was almost a ten pound difference. I weighed in at 204.4, so probably not the case today. Anyway, it was a good way to start my birthday. Now to go find some bacon like I smelled while out on the run.


It takes a long time to grow young. – Pablo Picasso

A birthday is just the first day of another 365-day journey around the sun.  Enjoy the trip.  ~Author Unknown

Wisdom doesn’t necessarily come with age.  Sometimes age just shows up all by itself.  ~Tom Wilson


Big Decision

I woke up this morning about 4:30 to slow rumbling thunder. Here we go. Now I have to make that big decision. Am I going to run in the rain? I used to love running in the rain in the summer. It takes the heat factor out of the equationand you continually have the option to receive hydration. I enjoyed it and was glad I chose to run.

I will have to get another pair of shoes though, so I can rotate them and not have to run in wet shoes. For today I ran in my old shoes.  Also a little over halfway through the run, I had to take my glasses off. I could see better without them. I may just start that way next time I have these conditions.



Time to stop messing around!

I set out this morning knowing what I had to do. I decided to run the other direction from my house this morning. I would run to the corner and then walk back to the house. This would serve as my warm-up.

When I got back even with the house, I started running. I got even with where the Purple Martins resided…not a peep. I think I figured out what happened. There when I was hearing all the noise, it was the uproar from them at how I was going about this training routine. Then they just got so disgusted, they left. I know it may be presumptuous of me to think they cared, but it makes me feel better.

It was time to stop messing around. I ran to the corner. I made the turn to the second side. I made the turn to the third side, now running up a slight incline. I felt pretty good. I made the turn to the fourth side and with a slight down hill slope, it actually felt pretty good. I was able to continue this all the way back home. I completed the full circuit in a run and it just wasn’t that big of a deal.

I knew yesterday after that loop that I was adding a lot of melodrama that didn’t need to be there. I know that the more I run, the more comfortable I will be with it. To get better you run through those periods of discomfort and pain until it starts feeling better and it will. I was stopping to walk when I wasn’t even hurting. I guess after yesterday’s loop, I just decided to get real and get serious. Things will start happening now!