Properly seasoned winter shoes

Well, socks, if you want to be technical about it. These are shots before my pleasant run in mid-thirty degree weather:

Note the high-tech heat-retention uppers.

Strategically placed vents prevent toe sweat and maximizing groundfeel. NOW we're talking barefoot shoe.

A little fringe for that deconstructed look. I'm so hip.

These feel great when it gets below 40. The cold road feels refreshing, while the rest of the foot feels nice and warm. After about a mile and a half, they were too warm for me so I took them off. Don’t want to wear out a perfectly good sock.

Before setting out with my holy socks, Iris said, “you’re a real weirdo, you know that?” I replied, “You’re no Plain Jane yourself there, toots.”

It was a good run. No pain in the left glute at all. This time the right glute complained a bit, though. I think it’s just my body getting itself back together after what I did to it. I’ll continue with the easy runs until things feel close enough to perfect, then I’ll put some speediness back in to get ready for the next 5k on Nov 12.

Speaking of the next 5k, I have a probably foolish gameplan: I’m going to try to hang with Trey (second series points leader (edit – woops!), leaves positive comments on the blog, all-round nice guy) and recent BFJ Interview victim Richard (3rd in series points, has developed so quickly into a fast runner that it confirms my observations of an unfair universe of disorderly chaos) from the start. Most likely I’ll burn out and finish around 19 minutes, but maybe… well, we’ll see. I’ve got a couple more opportunities before the Long Rest to reset my 5k PR, but they’re on hilly courses. Who knows if I really even have anything left in the tank. So might as well go for broke, right?

The last race of the year for me will be…

The Mistletoe Half. That’s right, I’m totally pushing my luck by stepping back in the ring against the course that ate my toe. I hope the weather is good for barefooting, so the revenge will not lack sweetness. Maybe possibly definitely a PR.

And then the Long Rest, during which you my dear friends will receive free, yes, FREE! samples of my Barefoot Couching Services. Is it ok to sleep for three consecutive days straight? What’s the proper candy-to-spinach ratio? Should one feel guilty for becoming a slothful hedonist? The answers to these questions (which are, by the way, yes, 15:1, no) and more await you for the low low price of, well, that’s to be determined. Something reasonable, I suspect.

Dear Running Sensei,

Hi! My name is Josh. I ran a marathon last week, and it went quite well if I do say so myself. The problem is, I’m still sore (glutes. Or “butt,” as the kids say), and I’m signed up for a 10k and a 5k race tomorrow. I’m pretty sure I won’t do very well, and it’s possible I could injure myself. If I suffer a butt injury, I’ll never hear the end of it. Yes, I said end of it. End. As in butt. I get it.

Anyway, here’s my question: should I race tomorrow?

Thanks,
Conflicted in Cackalacky

No.

Sincerely,
Running Sensei

There you have it, ladies and gentlemen, the inaugural advice column from the wise and mysterious Running Sensei. I shall heed his words, and sit this one out. Good luck, my competitors, and enjoy the freezing rain!

Odds and ends, a menagerie, and an assortment

I got a nice shout out from Eddie Wooten of the Greensboro News and Record. I don’t write about the awesomeness of my local running community nearly as much as I should.

I’m feeling pretty good, the only concern being a pain in my butt. Well, butt cheek. The left one, if you must know. More on the side, near the hip socket. I don’t think it’s from the race, however. I think it’s from the recovery – I’ve been sleeping on my back with my legs propped up, but normally I’m a side-sleeper. The other night I rolled over to my usual position, but with my legs still propped up. Leave it to me to give myself a sleeping injury. Or is it a pillow injury? I dunno, whichever one is more pathetic. I’m not worried yet, though. If the pain isn’t gone tomorrow, then I’ll panic.

This Saturday is Hitt the Brixx – a 10k followed by a 5k followed by Brixx Pizza. Of course I’m signed up for both. Shh… do you hear that? That’s the sound of the final nail being pounded into the coffin that contains my chances of a top-three finish in the Greensboro Race Series. I don’t see myself being very competitive in either race. I DO see myself having a good time running around with friends. The forecast looks cold. First sock race of the season!

Iris has been very busy lately. She has put herself in a leading role of the Womenalist Movement, she’s training the local kids for a 5k with GoFar (Go Out For A Run), AND she’s the Grande Dame of the virtual run series for next year, The 12athon. I’m the lazy one in the family.