Is it bad when every song you hear on the oldies station during a 20 minute drive is from your time in high school? That happened to, um, a friend.
Oh yeah, I managed to get out running the last two days. I'm still fighting the tail end of that upper respiratory infection, but the worst is over, and I'm not dealing with constant coughing.
Another week has gone by, and the training volume remains at essentially zero. I'm fighting off the remnants of the upper respiratory infection that's been plaguing everyone in the family except my wife, who might have dodged this bullet. Fortunately, if my son is the gauge, I should be getting to the end of this, as he has been cough free for about a week, now.
The last two nights have been interesting as I've woke up from a dead sleep as my body attempts to cough my lungs up. With two small kids in the house, it's not uncommon for coughing to wake me up. It's just not usually ME doing the coughing. I'll take it as a good sign, though, as it is hopefully a sign that my body is clearing the crud and I'm on the road to recovery.
The down time has given me time to reflect on some things, and I've come to the conclusion that I need another Ironman. I don't know where and I don't know how, but I need to get myself into another full distance triathlon.
I think it has something to do with the motivation of the unknown. I know I can run a marathon. I know I can complete a half-Ironman. I know I can run 50 miles in one shot.
There are two things that are unknowns. How I would perform in a second Ironman and my ability to complete a 100 mile ultramarathon. And I kind of promised my wife that I wouldn't tackle a 100-miler.
For the next six months, pursuit of a marathon PR in May will provide the stress needed for growth. After that...???
For now, though, I need to get some new lungs. The pair I have are all coughed out. Then, I need to get back on the road, again. Again.
There are few things that will get me to take a break from training or racing. I've raced with pulled muscles, high fevers, and sinus infections. I've trained through pelvic torsion, ruptured eardrums, and other, more typical, maladies.
Recently, I found that a complete bathroom remodel was sufficient to totally derail training. Last week, I was excited to get back into training. And this week...
The beginnings of an upper respiratory infection. Because I refuse to accept the potential that it's the flu. Regardless, lung related issues are one thing through which I'm unable to train. Little things like pulmonary doctors ready to skewer me if I hurt myself. So, whether it's a simple chest cold, a more severe infection, or the full blown H1N1 flu (remember, it's NOT the swine flu, it's H1N1, so don't call it swine flu), I'm taking a few more days off. Given the progression of my son's infection, it could be another week. He's been coughing for about 10 days, and getting better, now.
Each morning I wake up and consider going for a run. Fifteen years ago, I would have found myself laying in bed trying to find a reason NOT to run. Now, I find myself unable to get back to sleep thinking, "Really, just a short run. That won't be THAT bad." And then, I have to roll over and admit that the rattling cough in the lungs is the one thing that I'm not allowed to "run through."
For those still reading my posts (all three of us) who were unable to access the site recently, the host sent a note detailing the events surrounding a concentrated Denial of Service attack that occurred over the past week.
They even provided a spiffy 50% off coupon for services by way of "making up" for the situation.
There are two remarkable things, there. First, that a simply blog hosting site would be victim of such a concerted effort. Perhaps I need to do hit more of the sites they host. I might be missing something. And second, that they would provide a discount coupon for the ridiculous acts of an outside party. Unfortunately, such attacks are just part of life in the Internet world. (Should we thank Al Gore?)
Weebly has apparently spent a great deal of time and money to improve their infrastructure and ability to handle such attacks in the future. Given their handling of the situation, it's only fair to recommend them for anyone looking for somewhere to set up a blog.
Getting back into the training thing, I'm pleased to note that my aerobic capacity hasn't suffered TOO badly. After an easy seven mile run at 9:40 pace, I did three miles at 9 min/mile without having to break anything. It's a far cry from 3:40 marathon pace, but not bad for being off six, er eight, okay, nearly 10 weeks.
There, is, however, a noticeable price I am having to pay. My legs have forgotten how indestructible they are supposed to be. After two easy runs, 10 miles total, I was feeling it in my legs. Perhaps not to the extent experienced after my first marathon, but still...
These are the legs that do back to back 30 mile runs on a weekend. These are the legs that did 50 miles under 10 hours. These are iron legs.
Apparently, I need to bust out some rust remover.
Months ago, the FTC began investigations into advertising on blogs. The early investigation has led to a rather strange outcome. Originally intended to examine the use of viral media in advertising, the investigation has led to recent news that the FTC will be requiring bloggers to provide full disclosure regarding any freebies they receive and then help promote.
I must have missed a boat, somewhere. The blogs I read disclose just about everything. They talk about the companies that sent them free stuff. They talk about what they received, their thoughts on the product, and whether they would suggest it to other people. Then, they talk about having received the stuff, some more. Apparently, there is a super-secret blog cabal of people hiding the fact that they receive products for testing and marketing.
I've always been of the mind that if someone asks me to check something out, or provides me with some product because they like what I've done, I should help them out, too. One good example is the Swim Smooth instructional video. I posted a You Tube video from the producer, and he noticed the traffic coming from my site. To help me better understand his teaching methods, he sent me the full video. I've used it for years, and benefited greatly from it. So, I keep a link to their site on my Training Partners page. Hopefully, others have seen the value of the program and purchased it.
In the interest of "full disclosure," let me say that every single link on that page is to some company that has benefited my endurance career in a positive and worthwhile manner. Sometimes, that benefit has a very limited cash value. In others, the product or service was of much greater value.
But the "worth" of their assistance goes far beyond dollar values. That's what the FTC may have missed.
I'm waiting to see more details of the FTC guidelines. Perhaps the entire situation has no bearing on my blog. Perhaps the fines they are discussing are only for serious violations involving significant dollar values and no disclosure. Perhaps I'm overreacting.
As I said, I must be missing something, somewhere. Are there bloggers out there making a living off "freebies" and hiding those associations from the world? Are there people promoting items they are unwilling to identify as freebies?
I just have to wonder if the FTC might have better things to occupy their time. Maybe not.
I went to see an old friend, today. We haven't seen each other is quite some time, and it was good to catch up. We used to spend a great deal of time together, so the time apart was a challenge.
Of course, some reunions can be more painful, especially after a long separation. Fortunately, it's usually easy to slip back to "the way things were." Time is all it takes.
We spent just over an hour together, today. Longer than in the past, but I wanted to take it slow. No sense rushing things until we're as comfortable with each other as we have in the past.
No, I didn't die. And I haven't given up on triathlon, blogging, training, or anything else. What I DID do is completely gut and rebuild a bathroom. And to think I thought my co-workers were crazy when they said it would take six to eight weeks. Eight weeks later, I'm nearly done.
Eight weeks spent living in the bathroom made training tough. In fact, it made training, blogging, updating Facebook or Twitter, and just about everything else tough. Well, everything but learning how to solder copper pipes, install tubs, and work with textured paint. THOSE I have down pat.
Unfortunately, the work took a toll on my schedule. Both the Fox Cities Double Marathon and the Fall 50 fell. I'm now planning on rebuilding and ramping my mileage back up. My early goals are to get back to 20 mile weekend runs by January, then drop the mileage down and start training for the Green Bay Marathon in May. There will be no 50-miler, next year. The base goal will be a sub 3:40 marathon. The perfect day goal will be sub 3:30. The "not gonna happen, Superman goal" is to qualify for Boston.
I'll also be getting back into the pool and throwing the bike on the trainer in the basement. And updating my blog for those who have asked to be linked. And catching up with people who have been far busier than I.
In other news, an old friend (from way back in the Running Pol days) is going to tackle another race. I'll dig up her new site and add that link. She's in a far different place than she was five years ago. Aren't we all?
Just who is this Iron Pol?
A former out of shape sailor, who became a marathoner, then a triathlete, Ironman, and ultramarathoner. Now, life has pushed me into short track speed skating. More important than the titles is the lifestyle, and sharing it with others.