In the communication mode of choice, I was emailing my tri friend Jenny yesterday to discuss my knee pain, which I decided was really more discomfort than pain.
Jenny is new to triathlon but not to competitive running or cycling. In fact, going for a bike ride with her turns into a cycling tutorial, which is good considering that nearly everything I learned about how to ride my road bike came from watching the Tour de France on television.
She asked me about my knee then asked about my shoes. I'm three months into my new pair of running kicks, which I got by going to one of the local specialty running stores, having them look at my feet and tell me I needed a stability shoe.
Then she asked how many miles I have on my shoes.
And I have absolutely no idea.
I train by time. My runs and bike rides are scheduled for time frames (run for 45 minutes, intervals every 4 minutes, cycle easy for an hour, etc.) not for distances. My watch merely computes time and heart rate information, not distance, and I don't have the Nike-iPod system to track my runs.
That's when she sent me the link to Map My Run. You can plug in your starting location and draw your route and the program will automatically calculate your distance. You can also search for other routes that people have devised.
I had to shutdown my computer and physically walk away yesterday or else no work would have gotten done. The site is kind of addicting, and you can use it to map bike routes and walks, too. I discovered my go-to, simple neighborhood route is 3.66 miles and found other routes and distances for Chestnut Ridge Park and Delaware Park
And the even better news is that my knee feels about 95 percent today. Still, the workouts will be cycling and swim based to take some of the pounding off my joints.
In the meantime, I can map my runs and find all new types of routes to try.
This could be addicting.