Thoughts on fitness, health, good nutrition ... and running.

Welcome to Bald Man Running, a blog launched by Frank Murphy on January 1, 2015.

In March, 2013 I was selected as a contestant for the sixth season of Fort Wayne's Smallest Winner. Through this amazing program, I learned about good nutrition, sound exercise and accountability. By October, I would lose over 88 pounds (almost 37% of my original weight)! One of the many things I acquired through FWSW was a love for running. You can retrace my weight loss journey and discover how I became a runner by reading those entries labeled "fwsw" ...

Note: Many of the blog entries on this website predate 1/1/2015. Prior to launching BMR, I had written articles for various projects, and I have imported many of them into this blog (labeled "retro").

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

My nose = your business

Here's me passive-aggressively sticking my nose into your business ...

I know a lot of folks who have signed up to run their first half marathon at Fort4Fitness, which is awesome. I also know that several of those folks have been a bit lax in their training. I feel compelled to say something because if you don't get on the stick, your lack of training is going to bite you in the butt.

Depending on your training plan, you should be running about 20 miles a week with a long weekend run of 10 miles or so. If you've been letting it slide, don't just jump right into the schedule where you should be. Consult a running coach (there are several in the area that donate their expertise to help beginning runners). It's not too late to be prepared for F4F, but that window is rapidly closing.

I'm saying something because I want this experience to be a triumph for you. I'd love to hear your name called out over the loud speaker at Parkview Field and see you cross the finish line with your fists in the air and a look on your face that says, "I am a beast!" Keep your eye on the prize and train like your health depends on it.

If you need guidance to get back on track, ask.

That is all. Please resume your day as I pull my nose out of your business.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Another bite of the apple

Ever since finishing my first marathon (May 31, 2014), I've been thinking about what I could have done differently.

I finished, so that was a victory, but I bonked fairly badly as well. I was hoping for a time around 4:30, and I was a little ahead of that pace through mile 20. I finished with a 4:56.

If I remember correctly, miles 15-19 were through a park, alongside a river and mostly in the shade. I was feeling strong and was really enjoying the race. I was mostly oblivious to everything around me and was just basking in the "I'm actually running a marathon!" experience.

After leaving that part of the course, I began a long stretch that was without shade, 85% humidity and 85 degrees. I started losing steam and then the charley horses started ... several of them ... simultaneously.

I had to completely stop and wait for my calves to calm down. I stood there in agony and disbelief while staring at incredibly visible muscle spasms in my calves. I was genuinely terrified that I wouldn't even be able to start moving again.

My calves eventually calmed down, and I got moving again ... but just barely. I wound up walking most of the last four miles. I later learned that I was severely dehydrated. My best guess is that I wasn't hydrating properly while running in the park and by the time I realized what was happening, it was too late to do anything that could help. The real bummer is that all of my training and preparation were spot on. I was fit enough to run the entire marathon, but I blew it on race day because of my inexperience.

So, for the last couple of months, I've been mulling over in my mind how much better I might have done had I not bonked. I've been wanting another bite of the apple.

I've just registered for the Nationwide Children's Hospital Marathon in Columbus, Ohio on October 19. Watch out, Columbus ... I'll be smarter and in even better shape ... and I'm going to crush you.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Driving bribery

My son, Tim, has a driver's learning permit. Tonight, I told him that I was going to do a group run with some friends at one of the local shoe stores. If he went with me, I'd let him drive there and back.

He said yes, so he drove out there, ran two miles with me, and then he drove back home. One of his miles was at a 12:35 pace, which rightly impresses quite a bit. It was not a particularly flat run, so I'm even more impressed.

It's a good day, folks. Yep. It's a good day.