Beth Runs!

After sitting on my butt all winter, knitting and watching Craig Ferguson into the wee hours, it's time to get up, get out, and move!!!

Sunday, December 10, 2006

A tough week... (and a new gadget)

First, the gadget! After pulling an all-nighter a few weeks ago researching Nike + iPod shoe hacks online, I sprang $29 for the Nike + iPod Sport Kit. (The hack being how to attach the receiver to my New Balance 881s so as to avoid spending $100 for Nike shoes that suck for me.)

The Nike + iPod Sport Kit includes a sensor that attaches to your shoe and a receiver that plugs into your iPod. While you run, they calculate your distance and speed and record your stats in the iPod. Once in a while, a voice interrupts your music to tell you how you're doing. When you get home, you plug your iPod into the computer, and all the info is uploaded to your personal page on, where you can keep track of your workout history.

The problem is that Nike insists you need their special shoes with the built-in pocket for the sensor in order for the system to work. Turns out, that's a big fat lie. The sensor just needs to be attached to your shoe in a relatively flat position. In the Nike shoes, the sensor lies in a flat compartment inside the insole.

But now, outside companies have created ways to attach it to the top of the shoe held on by shoe laces. The RunAway, by SwitchEasy is the best and most economical solution I've found. Some people want to pay less by sewing velcro to the top of their shoe or carving out a chunk of insole with a knife. In fact, the blog ("If loving my iPod is wrong, I don’t want to be right.") has a whole list of Nike + iPod shoe hacks. The RunAway only costs $8 and to me, it's the most elegant solution.

I've been using the Nike + iPod kit for 2 weeks now, and it works great! I cannot believe how accurate it is at calculating mileage. Its readings match the display on the treadmill as well as the mileage calculations of my mapping program. Now I don't have to map out every run ahead of time, and I can be more spontaneous while I'm out. I think it's magic!

Okay, now for the tough part. Last Sunday's 18-miler was hell on my legs... belatedly. Monday, my legs were somewhat sore, but Tuesday was ridiculous. My right knee and right inner quad ached to the point that running was out of the question.

I tried running on the treadmill at the gym Wednesday night, but after 30 minutes I gave up and used the elliptical trainer for the remaining 20 minutes. The next morning, my knee hurt so bad, I wore a brace all day at work. Didn't attempt to run at all until today. I hope I'm not totally screwed on January 7 after missing so many training days.

Today, Michael and I ran along the Embarcadero. I only needed to run 8 miles today (an "easy" run), so I turned around just inside the Presidio and ran back to the Ferry Building: . Michael's long legs carried him all the way to the Golden Gate Bridge and back (11 miles) in less time than it took me to do my 8. Afterwards, we soaked in the hot tub at 24-Hour Fitness before coming home.

I think my leg and knee are good again. But we'll see about any delayed pain in the next few days.

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Thursday, June 08, 2006

2 new runs and something for emergencies...

I just signed up for the Walt Stack 10K on Sunday, June 18. I'm scheduled to run 6 miles that day anyway, so it fits perfectly into my program. I think running with other people will help keep me motivated. This race goes along the SF waterfront from Hyde & Jefferson towards the Golden Gate Bridge and back. It should be nice and cool down there at 9am: good running weather. Anyone want to come and cheer me on?

Here's another event I would like to participate in for my birthday next year: The Disney World Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge January 6-7. The goofy part is that it's a half marathon on Saturday followed by a full marathon on Sunday. Why would anyone want to do something like that? All I know is that I need to keep setting goals for myself to keep going. Anyway, what have I got to lose but my registration fee?

And finally, just in case I take the Goofy Challenge and collapse along the way (or at any other time I am out running) I just ordered the RoadID Shoe ID tag. Yes, this is a happy shopping day for me!

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