Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Reporting: Nothing Much

Not much to report. I've been getting more busy at work, which means less time to run. I am not an early morning person, so its hard for me to get up in the dark hours of the morning and go running. Besides, its a lot colder out at that time. I did get up a couple of times last week, and only went for about 4 miles each time.

When running barefoot was a new and daring thing for me, I had a lot more to share. Now it has gotten pretty mundane and I don't report as much.

I'm finding that it is a lot easier for me to run a 6 to 10 mile run. I used to be proud as buttons to be able to run that far. Now its kind of routine. I ran a 14.5 mile run on my birthday a few weeks back, which was the longest I've run in a long time. Usually my runs are around 4 to 10 miles each. My technique has settled down fairly well so that I can pretty much run abrasion free. Sometimes if I get lazy, I still get a rubbed spot on the outside of my left big toe. I decided its because it just turns downward a little bit. Not much I can do about that, except put a bandaid on it if I'm worried about it getting worn.

I went out yesterday for a very nice 6.5 mile run in the sun. It was brisk outside at about 50 degrees but was still very nice out. I planned on running the whole distance without walking, which I figured should keep me warm enough, so I wore my running shorts, not my long pants. It was pretty chilly in the shady spots, but I survived.

Some time ago I bought a cute running hat with a small LED light in the front. It barely casts enough light to see where I am going in the dark -- not bright enough to see the little bits of stone that might be on sidewalks, but bright enough to see if I am stepping into a hole or something. Sometimes I turn it on just so I can be seen better by cars.

Its interesting to see the weather turning colder, making me have to bundle up more. People who see me almost always ask me "Aren't you COLD?" I wipe the sweat off my brow and tell them I'm cooking! One time I said, "Yeah - I sure wish I had some gloves!" My feet don't suffer much from the cold. I think they have adjusted with an increased blood supply or something.

I'm just rambling here... feeling guilty for not contributing any new posts for a long time.

Last night I found that I can post my running route on and then view it using Google Earth. Thats pretty cool and it can give somewhat of an idea of what my routes look like. Still, I think it would be nice to have some kind of head-mounted mini-camera that I could film my running routes. I wouldn't want to film the entire run, but it would be cool if the camera could be set up to snap a forward photo every 5 seconds or so. That series of pictures would combine into a kind of motion picture of my running route.

Oh - my old running barefoot shirts I made a couple of years ago were wearing thin and fading, so I made two new ones. One is the same as before "It Takes Balls to Run Barefoot!" and the other one says, "Why Barefoot?" and I list ten reasons. My favorite reasons are "Designed by God!" and "Animal friendly - Earth friendly!"

I better log-off and get busy.

Happy trails (with few sharp rocks) to you!


Thursday, November 01, 2007

Shoeless in Seattle!

Last Tuesday found me up in Seattle with some time on my hands, so I changed into my comfort clothes and went out for a run along the Alaskan Way waterfront. It has a very nice sidewalk running past piers, stores, shops, and lots of people. It leads straight into a nice waterfront park with its own paved pedestrian path. The path was a little rough in places and I
was tempted to jump over to the bicycle path, which looked smoother. But I would probably get in trouble for obstructing bicyclists.

I did a turnaround at the end of the park and was headed back when I saw a gravel path leading up and over the railroad tracks, past a bunch of interesting sculptures. Since I wanted to go in that way, I braved the gravel incline, zig-zagged around the sculptures, and went down the other side - also on a gravel path. I then worked my way up to the Space Needle and ran around its park a little bit.

One cute thing I saw. A little girl about 6 or 7 was standing there with her mother. She was staring at me with big, round eyes of wonderment. Her mother had her dressed in a coat, hat and gloves even though it was 55 degrees out. When I made eye contact with the girl, she suddenly grinned a big toothless smile and waved enthusiastically at me. I swear that kids just "know" that running barefoot is a lot more fun.

I headed back down towards the waterfront and saw that a very long train was blocking my progress. So I headed back up the same gravel path as before and down the gravel path on the other side. Kind of ouchy, but not too bad.

My impression is that Seattle-ites aren’t as barefoot friendly as Portland-ites. I got quite a few comments while running, many not favorable. The friendliest comments came from the street-people camped out along the way. Maybe they felt sorry for me that I couldn’t find any shoes.

Total distance, seven miles.