Friday, March 24, 2006

Cry it Out

Worst parents ever. I'm grinding my teeth in bed as 9-month-old Finn howls in the next room. He's old enough now to not need a feeding at night, especially since it's only been three hours since we put him down. Just like there are a million different ways to train, there are as many or more ways to raise a child. After consulting with his doctor, we're letting him cry it out, starting now. We still go in and comfort him if he carries on too much, but no more snacking. We've drawn our line in the sand, sleep be damned.

Haiden joined in the fun of our sleeplessness with some nightmares of her own, so it seemed no one in the house got a good night of zzzz's. My plan for 22 miles today evaporated, as I couldn't lift off the sheets at 4:30. I'll have to do it Sunday, which left 16 for today. I dragged myself out of bed at 5:45 or so, just before Finn woke for good. Haiden soon joined us and the whole family had some time together before I headed out.

These mid-week 16 milers can go either way, but today things really clicked. This surprised me a bit after doing some tempo work yesterday, but maybe the legs are finally getting some snap after a few weeks with some faster paces. I started very slow, and kept increasing the pace by small degrees throughout the run, finishing with a few miles at 6:30 pace or so. Days like these are welcome, I really enjoyed myself and also arrived home with enough time for a bowl of cereal and some powerade endurance drink before taking Haiden to school.

I'm anticipating at least a few nights of very poor sleep in the immediate future, and I'm trying to plan accordingly by hopefully going to bed earlier and working on my attitude, two things I need to do more of. I'll still try to work in at least one more double, probably tonight, and hopefully I can finish the week around 110 miles or so.

On another note-the marathon in June in San Diego is on. I registered last night, and I'm really feeling good about having a chance to take down my new-found personal best at the distance. As far as a goal, I'm going to see how the training goes, but I would be lying if I said I didn't want to run at 6 flat or below for the distance. In an email Nobby reminded me that now (in the conditioning phase) is not the time to worry too much about marathon pace. The analogy he favors is of someone pulling up on a plant to see if it has taken root. Now is the time to train, the tests will come later. I'm trying to keep my "marathon pace" runs in a more nebulous form, focusing on what I feel is marathon effort. Some days this is 5:55, some days it's 6:05. The day it really needs to be 6 flat or under is June 4, so I'll keep working towards that end for now.

Training: 16 miles, 1:52:32, 7:02 pace


GregC said...

The crying it out stage is the worst. Is there a more helpless feeling as a parent than to have to listen to your baby crying and not being able to do anything about it?

Long time reader, first time commenter. Very impressive training.

Mike said...

Thanks Greg, sounds like you've been there. It's probably worse for us than for the kids, but that doesn't make it any easier.

Duncan Larkin said...

As a parent who's been through those stages, I can comment that they will pass; your worries about your children will remain as long as you live, but the insanity will pass and parenting will get even more fun and more rewarding...hang in there in that regard. You are prioritizing correctly, being a good parent first and a serious runner second.

Sasha Pachev said...

I second Duncan's comment. Everything will work out just fine in the end. Somehow you learn to deal with crying babies after a couple of kids. I remember holding my son Benjamin and he just would cry and cry. I handed him to a much older gradpa-age friend who has raised four children, and he calmed down immediately. Then I took him back and he started crying again. This repeated enough times to demonstrate to me I had something to learn. I still don't know what it is, but it seems I have more of it now that I have four children myself. Joseph usually calms down fairly quickly when I hold him. But in spite of our inexperience with Benjamin, so far he turned out to be a fine kid - very diligent worker, reads, writes, learning to program computers, runs, and even keeps a running blog.

angie's pink fuzzy said...

Oh, man, crying it out is tough on the parents! I hope Finn adapts quickly...of course, this too shall pass (as I keep reminding myself) but it sure is hard to endure in the present!