First off I want to thank everyone for the good thoughts and suggestions on the foot and ankle pain. I really want to thank David and Ryan for their suggestions. I've stretched this week like I've never stretched before and the frozen bottle of water has gotten a lot of use on the soles of my feet. I've even sat on the floor, rested my calf and achilles tendon on the bottle and rolled back and forth on that. Things have not worsened for sure and even seem to be getting a little bit better. Kim, if you're reading, check out their comments on the last couple of posts, hopefully it will help you too.
My mileage is still on the low side with only 16.5 miles on the legs this week in three runs. I did take the (mountain) bike out on the roads Monday evening for 11 miles in 55 minutes or 12 mph. Not exactly burning up the rubber, but it was good to be out there. Tuesday and Wednesday were exactly like last week, 3 miles each day mostly on dirt in 8:40-ish pace.
Saturday was another excellent running day with the CA Cruisers. We ran the loop around the Newport Back Bay. I'd last run this route with Jeff back in August of 2006, my how time flies. I had decided to wear some newer Trance 6, from Brooks. I'd bought these back in March and had only worn them about 20 miles so far. I really wasn't fond of the styling and even though I've always worn a size 10 in Trances from NXR, NXS, and NXT, these seemed big and clunky. I was hoping that their "stability plus" rating would be beneficial to my PF symptoms of last week. The Back Bay loop is a good 10 miles and because it's a loop around a body of water there is no short cutting the thing no matter how bad you feel. If the feet started hurting at 5 like they did last week, those last 5 wouldn't be pleasant.
We had a pretty decent showing this morning with plenty of people for me to run with. Jay was there, as was Jim and so were Julie and Gary who I hadn't seen in months. We all ran loosely together in various groups. Along with us regulars was a new guy, Forrest (I'll resist the obvious one liner). Forrest is the 16 year old son of another member of the group. Jay teased him about being able to run much faster than us "old" guys, but Forrest knew what he was in for. Since his Mom and grandfather were both runners he knew that slow and steady was the way to treat the long run. Between the five of us in the lead pack we all took turns kind of looking after Forrest.
Forrest is in training for the Disneyland Half Marathon in September, his first. He's a member of the marching band at his high school and works out with weights. Couple that with youth and he was in decent shape. He had recently gotten fitted for running shoes at the local Snail's Pace store.
By the time we had hit 6 miles we had already tackled the hills of the run. Forrest was with Jay at that point and was beginning to tire. Jay pointed out a small shortcut through a parking area that saved him about 1/2 a mile. When Julie, Gary and I caught him next he had run out of fluid. Julie and I ran with him and found out that except for one 8K race he had never run more than 3 miles; no wonder he was tired. We were both a little surprised that his Mom hadn't eased him into this a little more.
He was still in good spirits. We suggested that maybe a walking break was in order. He plugged along for a while and then finally decided to take us up on the offer. I walked with him. After 2 minutes I suggested that it was time to get going again. We ran together for 8 minutes when he asked for another walk break. Somehow Julie was right there with us so the three of us walked up Back Bay Drive together. I watched the clock and suggested we only walk for a minute. I also convinved Forrest to drink from one of my as yet untouched Fuel Belt bottles. Between miles 7 and 9 we took 3 maybe 4 walk breaks. At that point Forrest was pretty much done. I debated with myself whether I should push him to keep going or suggest that he take it easy. I ultimately let him decide how and when we was going to finish the run. He told me that the soles of his feet hurt and that maybe he would just walk the last mile or so in. The others in the lead pack had all gone ahead, as did I at that point. I stopped periodically to make sure that Forrest was still coming. I even caught him running a couple of times.
It was good to see the smile on his face when he was done. All the others made a huge fuss over him for completing his longest run ever. He took off his shoes and had a nice blister on the arch of each foot. His final pace for the 10 miles was somewhere around 10:15. Not too bad, considering he'd never covered that distance before. I was pretty proud of him for running with us when he could have run with the middle or back of the pack. It was a good run, seeing everyone encouraging Forrest and getting to know him along the way.
The good news for me is that my feet felt pretty good the whole way. There was very little hint of the pain in the arches that plagued me the previous week. There is still the weird roving pain in the ankle of my right foot. I think the stretching and icing worked their tricks. Later in the afternoon on Saturday my feet felt more achy than normal, but were tolerable.
Father's Day, the whole family went for a short hike on the Lower Monroe Trail in the foothills above Glendora. I had originally invited Lisa for a walk in Bonelli, but Tyler (home for a 3 week summer break) suggest the other trail. The boys spontaneously ran parts of the trail today. Wouldn't it be cool if I could get them out for a trail run. We only went in about a mile and back out, but I definitely viewed it as a possible running route some day. Earlier in the day we went out for Mexican food. It's a tradition we started back in 1987 when Lisa was pregnant with Tyler. We haven't always visited the same restaurant over the 20 years but we've always managed to have our fill of chips and salsa, and a lot of other good stuff, on Father's Day.
I hope all you fathers out there were able to spend some meaningful time with your kids.