Day 154 (F, 110603) — Learning to Run; Max Capacity Training Day 9

I went for a run this morning. My first since last Saturday.  I wore my Vibram Five Fingers (VFF) Bikilas and headed out.  I have used them only once since last Fall.

Background. In September and October of last year, I was running 3 miles on my weekday morning route and about 5 on my weekend “long’ route.  I developed quite a bit of ankle and calf pain which made me unable to run for about a month or six weeks.  I was told that, because of how I was running (landing almost exclusively on my forefoot), I was essentially doing five miles of bodyweight calf raises.  Ouch!

Since then, I have used some cheapo Sketchers running shows and increased my weekday morning runs to 6 miles (+/- 0.2 miles) and my longer weekend runs to between 7 and 10 miles.

The Dilemma.  I have had a recurring bit of tendonitis in my right ankle.  The guy at Run On! took a look and said I overpronated (bent my ankle in) and suggested a new shoe to correct for this.  Turns out I did not like the shoes and took them back.*

Now comes the tricky part . . . since I increased my mileage while wearing shoes (albeit poor ones), how do I return to using my VFFs without (a) reaggravating my latest round of tendonitis or (b) repeating my earlier VFF-induced tendonitis/calf soreness?

I really want to continue running longer (in the 6-10 mile range) but I’m afraid that that will cause problems.  Do I have to go short the first few times, working my way back into the “barefoot” groove of things and trying to find the mid-to-forefoot sweet spot?

The Whining. I hate the idea of losing all that extra work by only going 3-5 miles instead of going longer.  I really enjoy the time I run and don’t want to have to spend a month working back up to a decent distance.

Yeah, yeah, I know: all this writing is just me trying to find a way to justify going long this morning and risking hurting myself.  Damnit.

in my best five-year-old voice → I don’t wanna run short!

The Results. Oh well.  I do what I gotta do.  Here are the numbers from this morning’s run:

  • Distance: 4.42 mi
  • Duration: 0:51:18
  • Average Pace: 11:36 / mi
  • Average Speed: 5.17 mph
  • Calories Burned: 745
  • Elevation Climb: 233 ft

Not as short as it probably should have been but I’m a recalcitrant muthaf…um, guy.

I concentrated on my form this morning: landing mid-foot and leaning forward a bit to draw myself from one step to the next.

It really helped my speed; I bettered my average from the last few months by about a minute per mile.  In fact, my splits got better as I went: 12.08 for the first mile, in the 11s for the next three, and 10:28 for the last mile.  Yeah me!

It felt great to get out there and move again. I really enjoyed it even if it was shorter than I wanted it to be.

My ankle and calf feel fine right now.  Let’s hope that holds up and I don’t feel sore tomorrow.  Assuming things really are fine and stay that way, I plan to run tomorrow and Sunday.  We shall see.

For today’s listening pleasure, I stepped up to the Four Hour Work Week (FHWW).  Who knows . . . maybe I’ll have to start a new blog (or a new section of this blog) soon. 😉


Max Capacity Training, Day 9 is scheduled for this afternoon.  It’s the final Time Attack workout for Week 3.  I’ll use my patented 10-round approach to this form of protocol torture and we’ll see how it turns out.

The numbers below are my targets for this workout.  Any difference between the target and my actual number of reps/seconds will be noted in parentheses.

  • Squat-touch-reach: 93 (100)
  • Reverse Lunge: 78 (80)
  • Drop Squat: 96 (100)
  • Plank: 210
  • Total time: 12:50

Think you can do better? Take the challenge, do the workout, post your results…

(And this was at 9:25 PM, after a large popcorn at the movies and a burrito bowl dinner.)


More modified fasting today . . . probably about 20 hours as I plan to get home early and go out with my wife.  I plan to have a Free Meal for dinner with a big heaping serving of Damage Control hacks.  Then again, maybe we’ll go somewhere I can get a decent SCD dinner – Tex-Mex, Chinese, steakhouse, etc.

Pre-run Drink: two scoops Jack3d, two scoops Purple Wraath

Breakfast: Monster Zero, coffee

Mid-morning Snack: bouillon with hot sauce and a dash of soy sauce

Lunch: nada

Dinner: Free Meal with my wife

Other food throughout the day:


* To their credit, Run On! gave me a prompt and cheerful refund despite my decision not to purchase another pair of shoes to replace the ones I brought back.

One response to “Day 154 (F, 110603) — Learning to Run; Max Capacity Training Day 9

  1. I got more running videos for you! I found these ones by Brain Mackenzie the guy from the 4HB Ultra-endurance section.

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