Thursday, January 31, 2008 3 comments

The Running Gods

The weather people are predicting six inches of snow on Friday for the mitten area, so I knew I had to get out and run today. I had a miserable run Tuesday evening. My surgically altered right knee started acting up for no apparent reason and I could never get into a rhythm. It’s not like I’m putting in a ton of miles or doing weekly speedwork and hill training! Hell, I’m not even doing tempo runs.
I’m almost to the point where I don’t even like running. You remember when you were a kid and if someone didn’t like you, well you’d just reciprocate and not like them.
So needless to say, I wasn’t looking forward to running today. I even got light-headed putting on my running shoes from eating junk last night. But I knew I had to get out and put in some miles, even if was only two!
Well the first few minutes of a solo run are always the worst for me. That’s where everything is getting accustom to the bouncing and pounding, so I’ve come to expect it.
My knee was throbbing a little but not enough to make me stop, and then my Ipod ran out of juice. Now all I could hear was some old guy’s heavy breathing, but it didn’t make me stop.
The colder temps and headwind made me reconsider why I was out running but it wasn’t enough to make me stop.
I reached my turn-around point and was feeling great! I was actually having a good training run. I was maintaining a good heart-rate, I wasn’t over-striding and the sun even came out. It was like the cartoon where the birds and other animals frolic along side of you while you’re running.
I know it was just the Running gods having a little fun with me. They just want to get my hopes up so I’ll think I can go further and faster. I’m on to their little joke, but it did feel great!
Wednesday, January 30, 2008 2 comments

Global Warming????

Where is this Global Warming I keep reading about? I had to go in search of my garbage cans because of the wind gust of fifty mph.
Even with the sub-zero wind chills, we’ve still had a mild winter up here in the mitten state.
I think being a runner and keeping track of your miles and the weather conditions makes us more aware of the changing climates. I can always remember a certain race and what the conditions were for that day, be it cold or hot.
Now all we have to do is get through the month of February and its downhill from there. The days are even getting noticeably longer, which means running in more daylight.
So having said all of that, there was no outside running for this guy.
Tuesday, January 29, 2008 1 comments

PT


I was reading P.O.M. and she brought up an interesting point that I guess I just took for granted. She mentioned the relationship that you form with a Physical Therapist during your running career.
Now this may not apply to every single runner out there, because some of you are just gifted with a good gait and your body is just built for putting gin long miles without a problem.
Now I on the other hand was built for being able to peer over cubicle walls without standing on my toes or ingesting large volumes of beer without continually running to the john.
Well, since I’m not one of the lucky ones that can run forever without getting hurt I’ve seen my PT on several occasions. I can even ask her advice on any of my new aches and pains associated with running, free of charge!
We even occasionally will do strength training together, to ensure I’m doing everything correct.
So if you indeed plan on continuing this running thang, don’t be surprised when you make that first appointment with your friendly neighborhood Physical Therapist.
Monday, January 28, 2008 0 comments

A Day of Rest


Ahhhh, a day of rest from running and being out in the elements!

These are the days that I’m starting to look forward to. Now it’s really not a complete rest day, I still hit the weight room and do strength training but I’m inside.

Do any of you take any extra precaution for your skin because of being outside and taking more than the one shower a day?

I ask because I’ve seen the faces of some of the older triathletes and golfers that are exposed to the elements and it’s a little scary.

Team in Training informational meeting tonight, which means I’ll be home late and eat poorly.
Sunday, January 27, 2008 2 comments

Sunday Moanin'

Well today was still snowy but I had an opportunity to run in the streets, which were salted and somewhat dry.
I used my heart-rate monitor to gauge my run. I wanted to keep my HR under 160 the entire run but it crept up to 161 a couple of times. It tough once you get into a groove and have to back off to remain disciplined.
I think my poor eating habits caught up with me today. Bowling alley chili fries and a few beers didn’t make for the best nutrition on a Saturday.
I was so bad that we went looking for KFC Hot Wings last night. Fortunately or not, the KFC didn’t have any. How can a chicken place not have chicken?
I was able to get in six miles on my run across Arizona and today I’m going to help Sandy construct her 2008 race schedule.
Okay, time to watch Tiger Woods win another tournament, which will tie him with Arnold Palmer. Like you guys really care, but there’s no football to watch!
Saturday, January 26, 2008 2 comments

Slip and Slide

I only wish it was this kind.

We received about a ½ inch of light fluffy white stuff and it made for some tough running at the Metro Park. Typically when I have to maneuver through this type of weather I’ll run in the plowed streets or on the side of the road, which has gravel underneath for better footing.

Running on level pavement was okay but going uphill wsa like a car spinning it’s wheels. I was telling the team that they could add an additional mile to their logs because of the footing.

Now I have to rush to a TNT bowling fundraiser, don’t you love the weekends.

Friday, January 25, 2008 1 comments

Something Different

We’re starting a new program at work to promote getting physically fitter for 2008. They’re calling it the 08 in 2008, which is a series of eight physical activities done in a circuit environment and you’re timed.
Here are the activities:

¾ mile stationary bike at a moderately residence
25 abdominal crunches
500 yards on the rowing machine
15 pushups
20 step ups
15 dips
20 lunges (10/leg)
¼ mile run

Each of these activities should be performed with limited time in between, so you accumulated time is what you want to improve upon. Needless to say you shouldn’t sandbag to have a really good improvement time.
I completed mine in 9:14 without pushing myself hard at any one activity.
As always, the competitive juices are starting to flow around the gym to determine the Top Dog.
I was amazed at the amount of sweat that was pouring out of me at the end of the run. So let’s see how much I can improve over the course of two months.
I begin my run across Arizona on Sunday, so that will be more motivation to get out and run.
I heard some really good reviews on ‘Spirit of the Marathon’ and most people can’t wait until the DVD is released. It sounds like a good movie to get those running juices flowing. Maybe we’ll attend the February 21st showing.
TGIF
Thursday, January 24, 2008 3 comments

Another Pity Party


I can remember when I used to run to figure out some of the problems that were happening in my life.
I could run and clear my mind and get back feeling refreshed mentally. I would solve work related issues, make decisions on upcoming events and even sometimes take out my frustrations on the pavement.
I remember times when I would run to release some of the built-up anger that I had stored within. Those were really fast training runs.
I say all of this because now I’m finding that running has become one of the issues that I’m having.
I’m starting to obsess about running injuries, running distances, and running speed. I need to get back to the basics when I ran because it was good for me. I can’t remember the last time I encountered that “runner’s high”. Do you remember when you had short periods of time when you were gliding above the pavement and running with hardly any effort?
I need to get back to my running roots, whatever they are and make it enjoyable again. I think back on all the injuries and can’t really enjoy my runs for fear of a twinge turning into another injury.
When I first starting running years ago, I was more patient with my running progress because I was soooooo ignorant. Now that I’m a little wiser, I’ve lost my patience for taking it a little bit at a time. I’m seeing more runners go farther and faster than me and I want it back now!
Maybe that’s what I’ll do and just vent for the next few weeks and tell every one of the horrible training runs that I had and what hurts now. Even that has changed for me, I can think back when everything about running was positive and upbeat.
Whew, I feel better already!
Okay, today runs was short but once again nothing hurt. The temps were in the teens but the sun was out and we know how infrequent that can be in Michigan. I ran along the riverfront to ensure that I would get the maximum amount of sunshine, it’s just something a bout that big ball of fire that energizes me.
Remember, it’s not fast you go but how you look!
Wednesday, January 23, 2008 0 comments

Blah, blah, blah


Didn’t run, didn’t bike just got a case of the blahs!!!!
Tuesday, January 22, 2008 0 comments

Down Goes Frazier

It wasn’t fun and it surely wasn’t pretty but I got in my evening run. The streets were in terrible condition, with ice and slush and buses! Since the sidewalks weren’t shoveled, I was forced to run in the streets of downtown Detroit. Now I usually enjoy running in the streets but with the parked cars and ice it made for some treacherous running.
I guess I’ve been fortunate to have never fallen while running but I have seen runners take a dive. So just as I’m about to enter the restaurant to replenish my depleted fluids with the golden nectar, I find the only patch of ice on the sidewalk and go down, not hard but down nonetheless. Fortunately only my ego was bruised.
I can tell that I’m getting into those mid-winter blahs, when everyday seems cold and dark and I can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. I need a long warm vacation!!!!!
Monday, January 21, 2008 3 comments

Happy MLK Day


Well there’s no joy in Packerland. They may not be going to the Superbowl but it was definitely a season to remember. Thanks for the memories and congrats to Dan’s Giants.
Well the cold temperatures are here for a while but the winds have calmed and the sun is out so today’s run wasn’t so bad. I’m happy to say that I actually ran without any aches or twinges. Granted I wasn’t running fast but it’s great to have a good run in the log.
Sunday, January 20, 2008 1 comments

Go Packers

Some days are just meant for exercising inside and this morning was one of those days. Wind Chills were below zero, so I was easily talked into getting on my bike in the basement. My butt is actually starting to get back in mid-summer condition.
Now I can focus the remainder of the day preparing for the NFC Championship game. I have my chips, beer and Packer jersey ready for action.
I’m even taking tomorrow as a vacation day in case my celebration gets crazy!
Saturday, January 19, 2008 2 comments

Running With the Wind

After all the hype about the Arctic freeze that we were going to encounter, it really wasn’t that bad. We started with the temp at 18 degrees but the wind chill made it feel like 5! The wind can sometimes be your friend giving you that extra push that you might need to get up a hill but turn around and it’s brutal and unforgiving, especially when your face is froze.
Today was a day to insert marathon pace into their long runs and everyone performed like true athletes. It’s funny how we think of marathon pace differently when we actually have maintain it.
I’m donning my Packer gear for the remainder of the weekend.
If you think I’m bad the city of Green Bay has taken down the street sign ‘New York City’ and replaced it with ‘McCarthy Ave.’. They’ve gone as far as taking episodes of Seinfeld off the air, since that’s one of Eli Manning’s favorite shows. Don’t you love football?
Friday, January 18, 2008 3 comments

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

I’m in the process of making out my list of things for tomorrow’s TNT group training run. The temperature is going to be 18º but with the wind chill it will feel like 3º.

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

Okay, we will definitely be putting on an extra layer and of course the Vaseline for the face.

I’ll get a chance to use my Brooks Paradox Mittens, I love these things.

I’ll also see how well my Mizuno Breath Thermo socks work. These are the ones that draws the moisture from your feet and convert it into additional heat…

I’ll be keeping a close eye on everyone because it’s going to be COLDDDDDDDDDDD.
Thursday, January 17, 2008 0 comments

Vaseline Time

Getting ready for the big freeze that is covering the entire nation, just some of us a lot colder. This will mean an additional layer when running outside. They’re also talking about some strong winds, which always makes for fun runs.
Wednesday, January 16, 2008 1 comments

Popsicle Toes

I had a great time at the 20th year Anniversary celebration for TNT last night. I had an opportunity to see people that I haven’t seen since their events. As with a lot of us, some of them had fallen off the wagon of running and were ready to get back into it. Last night celebration was also the kick-off of registration for the summer 2008 teams.
We had 57 people register for summer events last night! I’ll have the opportunity to coach a few of my old team members.
Another thing about last night that still amazes is how many people are touched by these blood cancers. A co-worker of mine was in attendance with his wife, who is a survivor and a past Honored Hero. This guy works on the same floor as I do and he never mentioned a thing about his wife.
Went to spinning class at lunch and missed the opportunity of running in the sunshine. Oh well, it’ll be back in a few weeks!
We’re going to be hit with some Arctic temperatures in the next few days, so the outdoor running is going to get interesting. I always have issues with my feet getting really cold. I’ve tried all of the socks available to mankind and I still get Popsicle (Michael Franks reference) toes. It’s really hard to get the group out for a long run in single digit temps! I’ll have to come up with some bribes to entice them.
Tuesday, January 15, 2008 0 comments

Do Over

We’re having our Michigan Chapter of Team in Training’s Twentieth Year Celebration tonight. I get to see alumni from the past twenty years, which should include a few that I helped, get through their events. I am geeked!
I was glad to read that everyone got through this weekend with no major problems but it got me to thinking. Just from reading each individual blog over the course of the past few months, I really couldn’t predict how anyone would finish. I would read that someone had a really great 10 miles run and their split times were consistent. Then I would read that someone had a terrible long run and issues with some of their body parts.
I know that when I’ve had problems during the marathon it has been in part to my limited long runs and not having the mental fortitude to get through the bad patches in a timely manner. That combined with poor nutrition have been my downfalls.
So while it’s still fresh in the minds of some of you, what would you do over in your training that you think would have helped make the event even a little better?
I had to do the dreadmill today, since we got some of the white stuff and the roads were really sloppy.
Monday, January 14, 2008 2 comments

Off The Wagon

Well I fell off of the wagon this weekend with my newly found nutrition plan. I don’t think a glass of water in its true state crossed my lips. My diet consisted of potato chips and beer for the most part. I blame Sandy, since she was in Orlando running 44 miles in two days with Team in Training. Leaving the cooking to me Great job Coach Sandy.
Hey did I mention the Packers won?
This weekend was a busy one for quite a few bloggers out there in Blogland. Congratulations to Running Pat for completing the Rock N Roll marathon in Arizona. Pat actually met TNT Coach Bruce from Michigan at mile 22. Runner Gal Leana for completing the Goofy Challenge down at Disney. Marathon Moon completed her first marathon at Disney also. Each of these individuals had a different reason to start and continue to train even when things became a little difficult.
It’s these types of people that put a smile on my face and make my job as a TNT coach so enjoyable. It’s also these people that give me the inspiration to continue with my training despite the numerous aches and pains that years of pounding the pavement have taken on this old body.
So after that pep talk I’m taking my butt to the basement and get some miles in on the bike, go figure.
Sunday, January 13, 2008 1 comments

Football Hangover

The NFC Championship game will be held at Lambeau Field next Sunday, thank you New York Giants. Now even if they make it to the Superbowl I’m not going to bet against the New England Patriots. It could be ugly!
I was able to get in runs on Saturday and Sunday, which hasn’t been happening in quite a while. Even with a running log, I can’t figure out why I have the aches and pains that just seem to occur. I can go two days without running and have pain in my knee or hips. It can’t be due to the fact that I’m OLD!
Sandy survived this weekend’s trip to sunny Orlando. She ran a total of 44 miles with her TNT squad. She mentioned that each
Saturday, January 12, 2008 1 comments

Victory on Multiple Stages

Well Day one of the Goofy Challenge is in the books and Sandy ran 15 miles of running with the Michigan chapter of TNT. She also is suffering from the onset of what sounds like a cold. Runner Gal Leana finished the ½ and seems like she took it easy in preparation for the full marathon.
This is a crazy way to spend a weekend in Orlando with the temps in the low eighties! Whatever happened to just sitting at poolside with a few adult beverages?
After a shaky start the Packers won in weather that was Lambeau worthy, snow and cold.
Now let’s cheer for the NY Giants to defeat Dallas and we’ll have a Championship game next week at Lambeau Field.
2 comments

Football Saturday



Go Packers

Friday, January 11, 2008 3 comments

I'm Running Across Arizona

Since out lovely Winter Wonderland weather has returned, I’ve decide to Walk Across Arizona!

I’ll be spending the next 16 weeks logging miles that get me from one end of Arizona to the other.

No, I’m not going to Arizona any time soon. I’ll be doing my miles virtually.

I’m joining Pat’s virtual team in a heated contest against his wife’s team.
Thursday, January 10, 2008 1 comments

Talk about a pain in the butt!

The area that I rubbed raw a week ago still hasn’t healed completely, so I sitting awkwardly.

It doesn’t help that I got on my trainer for an hour last night and ran at lunch today.

A lot of you guys in Blogland are training for triathlons and even Ironman competitions which has sorta kinda got me to think about doing more duathlons.

You can forget about the third discipline (swimming) it ain’t going to happen.

If someone knows of open water swimming where I can see the lane markers or can stop swimming and stand, then I might give it a shot.

Now it wasn’t a true brick workout but my legs were still tired from last night.

Maybe I sleepwalk, which would account for me always waking up sleepy.

Sandy is heading off to Orlando tomorrow morning to be amongst the other ‘Goofy’ runners. Good luck to everyone that’s participating in an event this weekend.

You’ve done the training, so now it’s time to get your party on!

One note about my nutrition, I’m eating raw cauliflower to get my veggies.
Wednesday, January 9, 2008 2 comments

Change is a cumin'

Day two of consuming my Recommended Daily allowance of H2O and charting my diet.

How the hell do people eat healthy?

I’m struggling to get in my veggies and grain, especially since it doesn’t calculate the grains in beer!

The water is a lot more manageable since I fill my bottle on the way to the john.

I have my canister of Gatorade Instant Mix at my desk, so I have a little flavoring.

According to MyPyramidTracker, I consumed 3455 calories yesterday. I was good on everything but Cholesterol and Sodium, the two areas that I should keep a close eye on.

The other part of this plan is that you have to plan! (duh)

I mean preparing food before you wan tot eat it. I’ll probably need to go get some vegetables and do that cutting thing and pack them for little midday snacks.

I hope that tenth of a second off my marathon time is worth all of this.
Tuesday, January 8, 2008 4 comments

Bread and Water


Well its official, I’m severely dehydrated and malnourished.

Every time we have a Team in Training clinic on nutrition, I reevaluate my eating/drinking habits.

If it wasn’t for my beer consumption, I would look like an elite runner (skin and bone).

I am going to force myself to drink at least 64 oz. of water a day. This will be an increase of 62 oz a day for me!

I hate the stuff and have to thing of ways to trick myself into drinking it.

On the caloric intake side, I’m not a breakfast eater so I’m at a deficit even before lunch time rolls around.

I went out to http://www.mypyramidtracker.gov/default.htm to get an idea of how bad I was really doing on a daily basis and my eating habits SUCK!

Just as training and natural talent will take you so far in endurance events, the fuel that you put into your body will have a direct effect on your performance (duh)!

So I’ll be tracking what I consume for the next few days to get a better idea of where I am and go from there.

It was another warmer than usual day but I opted for strength training rather than push my knee for another day of running.
Monday, January 7, 2008 1 comments

Running Shorts

61º and that means I’m running outside in shorts!

No, that's not me int eh photo.

Pat, the only thing we’re missing here is the big ball of fire in the sky!
Sunday, January 6, 2008 0 comments

The Fog


I’m in a fog. That’s what my run was like this morning. Due to the warmer air and the frozen ground, we’re experiencing London type weather.

It wasn’t bad to run in but it got a little dicey whenever traffic was busy.

I was tempted to run in shorts but I could hear my mother’s voice telling me it’s January!

I’m experimenting with shortening my stride length and increasing mycadence in an effort to stay away from injuries.

Let’s hope that these change and my new strength training will get me through 2008 in one piece.

I wish I could say this is similar to Tiger Woods when he changed his golf swing in his endeavor to find the perfect swing but it ain’t. I’m just tired of being injured!

It’s mentally tough to keep reminding yourself to shorten your stride and still try to maintain a reasonable pace.

Okay, time to watch another six hours of football.
Saturday, January 5, 2008 1 comments

Be like Mike

I have a bunch of overachievers on the Southeast Michigan Chapter of Team in Training.

Each and every one of them is surpassing the scheduled miles and feeling great about it.

Several of them have scheduled fundraising events on the same day of their long runs.

Can you imagine running the longest that you’ve ever run and follow that with a can-drive? That’s right going door to door collecting cans from their neighbors.

I am getting so many positive vibes from this team that it’s scary.

These guys are asking questions, attending group trainings and enjoying it!

Why can’t we all be like them?
Friday, January 4, 2008 2 comments

Heatwave


We’re having a heat wave! That’s right, eat your hearts out Arizona and Florida.

We’re getting into the fifties in the next few days.

It’s this type stuff that makes it tolerable to live in the Winter Wonderland.

As one radio personality always says about this area, ‘..why would anyone have stopped to live in this frozen tundra?’

I’ve asked myself that a thousand times, always during the long winter months.

This is the time of year the days are actually getting longer by minutes and you can tell!

I self-diagnosed myself with Seasonal Affective Disorder, you know when you can sleep for ten hours and wake up tired!

It’s just something about awakening in the dark and getting home in the dark that drives me crazy!

So whenever we have a chance for decent weather, you have to take advantage.

I have to shake up the long run routine for my team, I’m thinking having them run marathon pace for one mile in the middle.

So with the warmer temps, I’ll be outside as much as possible this weekend.

Thursday, January 3, 2008 2 comments

Thursday Thoughts

With the colder temps and accumulated snow and ice on the roads, I’ve been become closer to my bike in the basement. I just can’t muster up enough mental willpower to run outside in the dark.
I’ve increased the intensity of my cycling, thanks to Coach Troy and his Spinerval DVDs. You would think I was thinking of doing a tri or something. I’m doing my strength training during the day and getting on the bike when I get home! The hard part is getting past the refrigerator that dispenses those cold adult beverages!!!
On another note, music lovers beware! I just got an email about the crackdown on headphones and what the ramifications will be. There is an article in Runner’s World but a person I know received a certified letter stating his official results were being taken out of the Minneapolis Twin Cities Marathon and he will be denied entry in 2008! All of this based on his finish line photo with headphones!!!!!
Wednesday, January 2, 2008 1 comments

Their First Race

I forgot to mention that I had the pleasure of seeing two of my Team in Training participants at the New Year’s Eve 4 Mile race. This was their first ‘official’ race since we started training in November.
I kept telling them to not go out to fast even if is seemed they were running really slow. I remember my first race and not knowing how fast to pace myself. Why shouldn’t I be in the lead group, even if it meant running in an all out sprint? I learned my lesson real quick. These ladies even ran together the first mile, I’m sure if nothing else this helped running with a familiar person.
Anyway, both of these ladies finished in times well below what they had expected, which was great.
One of Sandy’s Xmas gifts was a headlamp for those runs in the dark and she finally got a chance to use it this morning. She was able to slip and slid through the surrounding sub-divisions like a drunken coal miner. I myself took the road most traveled by many, the dreadmill!
Tuesday, January 1, 2008 6 comments

Let it Snow


Well 2008 came in with a bang, sort of. We got dumped on with about six inches of the white stuff.
Sandy and I were contemplating running in the New Year’s Day Resolution Run but we shoveled snow instead. This means that we’ll be on the bikes after the shoveling ends.
The timing of the snow was perfect for our New Year’s Eve Race. Almost everything went off without a hitch. We had over 1100 participants, which was an increase from last year. If the snow had fallen yesterday, no telling what the outcome would have been. We would have been like Chicago but running out of hot chocolate instead of water!
I want to thank everyone for accompanying me through the previous year and I’m looking forward to bigger and better things in 2008.
Okay time to get back out and push some snow into my neighbor’s driveway!
 
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