(Not) Running with Kids

I realize I haven’t written much about my running for over a week, but that’s because I haven’t done much running to write about.  I know that to many people the sentence “I only ran 22 miles last week” sounds like fishing for complements, but I’ve been averaging a bit over 30 for the last few months, and two weeks ago hit a non-marathon training high of 38.  (Besides, I read blogs where runners cite their 41 mile a week training plan as evidence that “you CAN run a 100 miler on low mileage.”)

The trick is to figure out how to fit regular running into my temporary stay-at-home-dad lifestyle.  I’m off for the summer and M just went back to work, so as of last Wednesday I’m spending my days at the park, at the playground, and eating mac and cheese while watching Follow that Bird for the 456th time (oddly, I don’t get tired of it.  But then, it does have Waylon Jennings in it.)  I love that I get to spend all day playing with my kids, but it not easy to fit running in.  The weekends are the same (last weeks 22 miles included 15 on Saturday), but I no longer have a “duty free lunch” that I can get 3-4 miles in during.  The mornings are sort of crazy, and right after M gets home from work its time for dinner and a bath.  It’s looking like after Nat’s bedtime will be the only option, so that means convincing myself to head out the door at 9 or 9:30, at which time Newton’s First Law of Motion is hard at work.  I managed to go for one evening run last week: I only made it 2 miles, and normally I don’t even count anything less than 3 as a run.

I’m going to try for 3 miles tonight after Nat is out; currently I can hear strains of Llama Llama, Mad at Mama drifting from the next room, so he’s still up.  I’ve decided, however, if I can only run 20 or so miles a week over the summer, that will be okay.  I’m not training for anything, and with my recent increase in milage a few low milage months wouldn’t be bad for me.  Besides, next year I’ll be teaching out here in Brooklyn, at a school that’s only 4 miles a way.  I’m hoping to run to and from work on a regular basis, so starting in September I would theoretically be able to do 40 miles during the week without even trying to find time for running or running on the weekend.  I don’t think that will be my weekly routine, but once I do start training for an ultra, that will help.


Speaking of ultras, I’m excited about this weekends  Western States 100 race.  Everyone running the race qualifies as a “person who makes me look normal,” since it is such an insanely gruelling 100 mile race.  Last year’s winner and current record holder, Geoffrey Roes, is running it again, although Anton Krupicka, the former champion who raced Roes neck-and-neck down to the last few miles, just had an accident and has to miss this years race.  Anyway, Running Times just produced this mini-documentary about Roes, so in light of reading about my recent not-running, you can see some amazing shot of him running insane distances up in Jun0:

[blip.tv http://blip.tv/play/gbdlgsLPdQI%5D

[I’m having technical problems.  If they persist and you can’t see the video, you can just watch it here.]


About Chris Van Dyke

I am a 33 year-old high school English teacher and long-distance runner. I live in Brooklyn with my partner, our 3 year-old son and 1 year-old daughter and a growing collection of muppets and trains. Besides running and teaching I like to draw, read, write, cook, and play the harmonica. While I didn't get to run my first ultra-marathon on my birthday, I've got a few more I've set my sights on. You can follow my (seldom updated) twitter feed @aboutrunning. I also blog as part of the Run Smiley Collective.
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