Saturday I made my last long run before the Tulsa Run 15K coming up this next weekend. My training is not going like I thought it would.
Basically I have been running only one day a week because i have a sore back every morning. Weekday mornings is generally the balance of my training where I do my resistance traiining (essential to successful running) and my shorter runs.
My back is killing me in the morning in one particular spot about midway down my left side. And it disappears about 20 minutes after I wake up in the morning. No, the bed is not uncomfortable but the pain is not quite excruciating in the morning.
So I get up and make coffee and read the paper and check up on what is going on online.
So anyway, the Tulsa Run is 15K and I’ve only trained about 11. Things will be okay though. I know how to stretch things out. I first ran the Tulsa Run in 1994 and ran it every year through 2014. Last year I injured a knee and so I walked the 5K but I’m running the 15K again. It will be my 22nd time.
How about you? I bet you know how to stretch things when you have to.
My new cell phone has a “cut in” feature where it puts a selfie in the pic. I love it and almost nobody else does. I love the goofy look on my face.
My first race of 2016 was the Commitment Day 5K in the Tulsa suburb of Bixby at Lifetime Fitness. It was a fun race for several reasons. First it started at 10 am instead of the crack of dawn which made it more doable for us old farts party animals who like to sleep in stay up late with our wild and crazy friends. Second we had a Zumba warmup. That was unexpected! My beautiful wife became a Zumba instructor and I have been wanting to crash one of her classes and video a couple of her routines. Something about the way she looks at me when I talk about it makes me think that she is not near as excited about it as I am.
Well we had Leslie who led us in the warmup. She really did have more than a half dozen people she was leading.
See!! I’d of participated but I was doing my blogging journalistic duty of documenting the event. Really. Actually I did try a few moves. I think i have lots of potential. In the engineering sense in that a rock at the base of a mountain has a lot of potential energy to gain by somehow getting to the top, not that it has any chance of getting there.
Enough of the dancing, this is racing. We moved over to the start line. I did my usual start at the very back. Sure I have to weave through walkers and baby strollers but I like passing people from start to finish and it is not like there is anything on the line anyway.
This is the finish. I love seeing young people kicking hard at the end. And see the group of three ladies behind him? Lots of people just jog along a chat with their friends. Usually that breeze pass me like I’m standing still.
We had the gym to relax in after the race. Lots better than huddling behind cars and trailers like most winter races. The facilities were first rate.
The race was an out and back type arrangement with hills and dips near the turnaround.
I finished fourth in my age group. I don’t know how many were in my age group but I suspect the answer is approximately four.
It was a fun, family, oriented race and I’ll probably be back next year.
They had a cool and very engaged Santa at the race. He was giving out high fives, especially to the kids. I like active and engaged Santas. I still have a bone to pick with him about the ever increasing amounts of coal I get in my stocking every year.
Saturday I ran in the first ever Rudolph 5K in Broken Arrow. It was only my second race since I screwed up knee on a trail race on Labor Day and the first race where I was going to try and run the whole way.
People dressed up with reindeer antlers and red noses and all sorts of costumes.
I went through a couple months of rehab on my knee and about a month on my own doing the stretches and exercises that the Physical Therapists taught me.
So I pretty pleased, I was able to run the entire way though pretty slowly. My knee felt fine before, during, and after the race so getting faster is now a matter of training and conditioning. I never was very fast. My motto has always been to start slow and then taper off.
I could say that I was fast enough to place third in my age group, which would be true. The whole truth is that there were only three men in my age group, not counting the thousands of guys in northeast Oklahoma who slept in and didn’t enter the race. So I’m booking it as third in my age group.
I appreciate the organizer of the race, Fleet Feet Sports, and all the other people including volunteers that it takes to put on an event like this.
My Big run every year that I look forward to is the Tulsa Run 15K. I have run it every year since 1994 when it was the first race I ever entered. This year I did the 5K version because I am still in rehab on my knee from a fall that I had in early September. I felt bad about it for about five seconds then my motto kicked in. The motto is “If you can’t do what you want, then do what you can.” So I can walk a 5K, better than sitting on your butt is what I say. Sitting is the new smoking is my new motto.
The downside is that the 5K race starts over an hour before the 15K so I had a little bit less time to get ready. You see my office building is right by the start so historically I am able to get to the office. Make some coffee, check my email and update facebook, do some blogging, and then 10 minutes before the race head downstairs.
Since my leg was sore I had no intention of run/walking. So I made a video of the walk up to the start line. Generally in the 15K it takes about five minutes to get to the start. Psychologically passing people from start to finish. So I started at the back in this race and stayed pretty much in the back. The music community has historically supported the Tulsa Run and I love hearing them. We generally have bagpipers, rockers, rappers, and sometimes cheerleaders. I guess the Christian bands sleep in late because I hear lots of taped Praise and Worship music but not that many performers.These guys have been here the past several years playing Hispanic music. They are pretty darn good. So we go on down Boulder avenue south from downtown and hang a left and go East down Cherry street and then… Wow, look at all the people way ahead of me! And look at all the people coming back already and I have not even got halfway. Such are the joys of walking.
So I finally get down the hill, and then up the hill and turn around and head back down the hill again. Hey time for a Guiness maybe? No, they were closed.
Make the turn at the Fertility Clinic on Boston and another rock group.
Headed up the hill and hey, who are these cheaters coming on the side. I think they are the fun runners. Lots of kids hauling butt is what they were. Nice to seeing kids running is what I say.
And then here comes the back of the packers in the 5k headed towards to art deco canyon of Boston Avenue.
So I got a nice technical long sleeve shirt, a bottle of water, and little medal and a care package containing cheese spread, chips, animal crackers, a tiny twix bar, and a hand wipe. Uhhhh, thanks, where’s the beer, guys? Where are the snickers bar? Oh well, times change and so does this race. Hey, I don’t care, I love this race. I’ll be back.
22nd Tulsa Run in the books. I’m looking forward to running the 15K next year.
Thanks to the race sponsors, the race director and his helper, and the army of volunteers that it takes to put something like this on.