Friday, December 26, 2008
I have had a wonderful Christmas. Wonderful because I have been around family. Joy is watching the light of happiness in a child's eyes.
My training is going well, I'm starting to ramp my miles back up. My upcoming races are mainly trail runs, so I will try to get more time on the trails. I have several goals for 2009, but will write about them next week. I will tell you that I did register for the Boston Marathon, and my application has been accepted.
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
For the last week, my wife and I have been in the Dominican Republic celebrating our 29th anniversary. During that time my running miles have gone way down. Less than 25 miles a week. But that is a good thing. I'm not sure I could have wound down my mileage otherwise, although the cold weather in Oklahoma may have been able to accomplish the same thing. We enjoyed our time away, but travelling at this time of the year is a huge headache. While we stayed at an all inclusive resort, within the D R people always have their hands out, and I detest that. I'm not singling out the D R, every country I've been in has been this way. And it was the same way in Miami, where we stayed a couple of days. More and more I'm convinced that customer service is almost dead. We had several occasions where we were lied to about why things didn't happen the way they were supposed to. But tis the season, so I'm not going to dwell on that. We are home, safe and sound and all is well.
Feliz Navidad Próspero Año y Felicidad!
Friday, December 12, 2008
Posted from bimactive.com
Monday, December 8, 2008
Well it's over. My purpose in running this marathon was to qualify for the Boston Marathon. For me to qualify, I needed to run 3:45 or better. This is an 8:35 average pace. Since Tuesday, I've been writing this blog in my mind trying to figure out how I could explain not achieving my goal. Why?, because I haven't run what I've felt like is a good long run. Sure, I've run over 30 miles three times, but saying "run" is to use the term loosely. All of those runs were really in preparation to pace a runner in the Motherroad 100 miler. And they were all run at a pace over 12 minute miles. But I had also been running pretty good tempo miles, so I knew I still had a chance. Anyway, my trip to Tucson was uneventful. Planes on time, no problems renting a car and finding the marathon expo. The expo was very small, but everything went smoothly. This race used one of the new style chips that tears off your bib and loops through your shoelaces. It's a throwaway. On my way to the expo I passed a Trader Joe's. So I knew where I would be buying dinner. I stopped there on my way back, got a sandwich and salad and went to my hotel to settle in and watch football. First I watched Florida take care of Alabama, which I figured they'd do, and then I watched Oklahoma take care of Missouri. I slept pretty good considering that I usually don't sleep well the night before a marathon. I got up at 4 and got dressed, got some coffee and headed to the parking lot to pick up the bus to the start. Got to the start and it was cold, but not as cold as I had expected. I decided not to wear anything other than shorts and my running club t-shirt top. I had gloves and long pants on but just warmed up in them, and then threw everything else into my drop bag. A countdown from 10, a horn and we're off. If any one plans to run this in the future, email me. I'm not going to go into all the ins and outs of this course, but let's just say that if you expect to be running down hill all the way, you're mistaken. But it's still a fast course. After reading other peoples experience with this course, I decided that I would let it take me along, that is bank time where I could and give it back where I needed to. I settled into my pace, still with doubts in my mind. Could I hold this pace and not crash and burn around 18-20 miles. My heart rate was running higher than I liked, but it was do or die. Also my Garmin will sometimes read high at first, but if I stop, let the rate drop, then start again it will usually stabilize. But there was going to be no stopping for that in this race. So I just pushed on with it running high. Eventually it did drop to where I wanted it, but after 12 miles it went back up. This race takes about a 4 mile detour into an area called the Biosphere. While I'm not sure I ever saw the Biosphere, this is where you have to give back time you've banked, and trust that you will bank some more after you leave here. This is a very hilly area, and I dropped to over nine minute miles based on what I had read from previous runners. Around mile 4, a lady asked what my goal was, then said that was hers also. She said maybe we can help each other and I said ok. We pretty much stayed together until after we left the Biosphere. Then she started dropping back. I had to keep pushing if I was going to make my goal. My left calf started hurting, not much but it made me think I might have problems up ahead. I remembered that I had some Endurolyte capsules, but also I have problems swallowing pills and capsules when I've been running for a while. I decided to chew them rather than swallow them whole, and after a while they seemed to work. I kept holding my pace, and when I hit mile 20 with about 3 minutes to spare, I started thinking I might be able to do this. But I also knew the wall generally resided in this area. But I kept pushing. Mile 21, 22, 23, I hit 23 with about 27 minutes to go to make my goal and I was thinking, I'm going to do this. My pace was faltering, but it was still just below 9 minute miles, and that was good enough to get me in. I started pushing near the end, you know it starts getting good to you when you smell victory, and I saw the clock was reading 3:42 plus. As I was nearing the finish line, I heard the guy was calling out names and cities, then I heard him call my name and Oklahoma City. I crossed in 3:43:01 chip time, 2 minutes to spare, sweet. I got my medal, some water and walked around for a bit. Then I went back to the finish line in time to see my new friend finish. She was beat, but said she felt ok, just couldn't maintain the pace. I then walked around some more and decided to wait to see a friend who had moved from Oklahoma to Colorado. I knew she was running, and had seen her during the out and back to the Biosphere. She was running with the 4 hour pace group, and I figured she'd be able to hold that. I saw her come in, talked to her for a while and then headed to the bus back to my car. Before I got to the buses, I saw a guy whose blog I read named Dane. He's a pretty fast runner, and is famous for having run 52 marathons in 52 weeks. He did it to raise money for a charity, and called it fiddy2. I have linked to both his blog and charity. You also might want to read his race report , since it gives more course information than mine. I then took the bus to my car headed to the airport and now I'm home. Hurting and sore, but I've felt worse. Happy to have achieved my goal, and in the next few days will decide if I will register for the Boston Marathon.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Saturday, November 15, 2008
I wanted to keep the speed work up after my very long slow distance last weekend. Many of my friends and co-runners are off to run in either the Tulsa Route 66 Marathon or the San Antonio Rock n Roll Marathon.
The only race nearby was this 5k which was perfect as far as I was concerned. It was cold this morning, and even colder at the race site which is on the lake. My car was showing 40 before I got there, but I know it was in the 30's with a wind chill in the 20's. I did my best to stay warm until the start. This was a moderate sized race, 212 finishers, and a fairly flat course. We started and I was looking at a couple of people ahead of me that I knew I wanted to get ahead of quickly. I did, and as the course turned north we were going into a strong headwind. I had my Garmin set to alert me when I was going too slow and it was beeping constantly. But I knew I wasn't going to use all my energy fighting the wind. This is an out and back course, so I knew the second half would be with a strong tail wind. I made the turn around and none of my age group rivals were anywhere near me. Still I was giving it all I had. As I passed the 4 k mark I was fading fast. I heard someone breathing heavily behind me and thought it was a rival. I sneaked a peek as I made the final turn and saw it was someone much younger. He passed me and I crossed the finish line. I had a finish time of 21:27. That was good enough for first in my age group, and I was fine with that. Today was not a day for p r's.
I will run an 8k on Thanksgiving Day and then it's the Tucson Marathon for my B Q attempt.
Good luck to all that are running marathons and half marathons tomorrow.
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
When I started this blog, I made a conscious choice to keep it non political. Not that I'm not political, I'm a very political person. And I will admit that for the first time in my life, I contributed to a presidential candidate. However, I didn't want the blog to be political. Politics has gone beyond civil reasonable discussion and disagreement, to nasty dirty lies and innuendos about people. Nevertheless, I cannot stand silent on the historical nature of, and the statement made by the people of the America I live and vote in. I will leave it with "we can only hope that the promises become reality." "Esperamos que las promesas serán realidad."
Monday, November 3, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Yesterday, Saturday, was a very busy day for me. I had plans for running in the evening, but I wanted to do sort of a warm up run in the morning. Around 9:30 a.m. I went to a local park. My plan was to run 4.5 miles, it's a 1.5 mile loop track. I started very slow and ran the first mile around 11:30, this included stops to stretch. I ran the next two at 8:30, this gave me three miles, and I decided to go ahead and make it an even six, so I ran the next two at 8:00 and ran a cool down mile at 9.
Next up was a date with my granddaughter. She had asked me Friday evening to take her to a classmates birthday party. I wasn't clear on the details, but I knew I had to pick her up at 12:30 for a 1:00 start. I got to the address and it was a place called "Pump it Up." It's a well run party place for kids but appointment only. They start you out with a safety video, then take you into the first play room. A lot of air pumped up play areas. Slides, jump areas, ball play areas, and in the 2nd room more of the same but including a obstacle course. After watching the kids for a while, I had to do the slide myself. It's a good workout getting to the top of the slide, but then the fun begins. I did it about 4 times, then in the next play room I did the obstacle course twice. After about an hour playing, and getting the kids good and tired, they take you to the party room. Pizza, vegetable trays, and plenty to drink. I was hungry now, and the pizza was as good as at any of these type of places I've ever been. But I think they bring it in. Cake, open the presents and then the show is over. About two hours total, perfect. My granddaughter wanted to go somewhere else, but as soon as she got in the car, she went fast asleep, perfect. I took her home and then prepared for the rest of my evening.
A friend, Joel, is running his first 100 miler in a couple of weeks, and he wanted to get in a long night run. I had not promised to run it all or any of it with him, I wanted to see what plans my granddaughter had for me first, but since things seemed to be working out, I decided to go for it. I got there, and there were two others there to run one loop with us. A loop is about 10 miles. It was daylight when we started, but it was dark before we finished the first loop. When we finished, the two dropped, and we gained another runner for one loop. We finished that one, and then Joel and I did the last loop together. We finished after midnight, and did just under 31 miles. So I'm calling it our midnight 50k.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Today I did a very easy 11 mile run/walk. I was running, and ran into a friend who was walking. He had raced yesterday, and was just taking it easy today. So I walked with him for awhile, and when he turned back I started running again. It was an easy recovery week.
Yesterday, Saturday October 11th, I was taking it easy, watched OU lose to Texas and preparing to "chill" for the rest of the day maybe run a few light errands, when my granddaughter calls and asks me to take her to the emergency room. Now my granddaughter is 5 so you know who was really asking. So I speak to her mother and her mother says "yes, we do need to go to the emergency room." So I go get them and take them. My granddaughter is in a great mood and just glad to be around "pa pa." And of course I'm thinking "is this trip really necessary." But of course error on the side of caution when it comes to children. So, the short rest of the story is I was in the emergency room from around 2:00 p.m until around 11:00 p.m. A nine hour stay for about thirty minutes of actual interaction with medical staff. And they treat you like crap, even though she has insurance. Thankfully my granddaughter is doing just fine.
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Happy Birthday to me.
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Today I ran 10 miles around Hefner at a very easy pace. I wanted to run with the running club but after the race yesterday, my granddaughter called me and asked if she could spend the night with me. All other plans went out the window, and I went to pick her up. We had a great time together yesterday and today.
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Yesterday was the Makin' Tracks 5k race and I was a bit apprehensive since I hadn't run a short race in some time. But when I got to the site, and after a short warm up, I was really feeling pretty good. I felt like I might have a P R in me. I sized up my age group competition and decided there was only one person I had to worry about. We took off, and I was feeling good and taking it kind of easy. I was passing people but wasn't at maximum velocity yet. There are some small hills in this race, and I felt really good climbing them. After 3k I only saw the one guy in front of me and decided I might have a chance to catch him. I picked it up a bit, and after passing the 4k mark I was really starting to hurt. The last k is also uphill and I wasn't in love with it as much as the earlier ones. But I was determined to catch him, and hopefully win first in my age group. It also helps that I know this guy slows a bit near the finish. I caught him with about a block to go and won my age group by 4 seconds. I also P R'ed by 20 seconds. A good morning all in all.
Sunday, August 31, 2008
Just a few more comments on the Green Lakes 100k. I have been informed that I won the "Courage of Trying" "Inspiration Award." Ok, thank you. I didn't feel courageous and very inspiring while I was whining about not being able to finish in under 14 hours, but I do accept this in the spirit in which it is given. Moving forward, I had to go to work immediately the day after this longest run of my life. And it was difficult, but day by day it got better. I was working a trade show in New York, and had to be on my feet all day. During the week after, I ran 5 miles on Tue and 5 miles on Thur. I think it was a bit soon, but I had committed to run 30 miles on Saturday with a group that was running the first part of the course for the Mother road 2 100 mile run. And I thought that some short runs would speed my recovery. I have agreed to pace a friend in this race. I will probably pace him on the overnight part of the run, so I will not be running this part, but I felt like I needed to run part of the course with him in training. Up until Thursday, I wasn't sure whether I would be ready to run this far so soon. I really didn't feel ready, but knew I needed to let him know something, so I decided to say yes, and hopped I would feel better by Saturday. We drove to Elk City on Friday night in a storm, and wondered what the morning would bring. We got up early, and it was calm and really a bit warm. It was not 6 yet, and I think it was in the upper 70's and humid. We met up with two other people, several others had backed out, and started our journey. I felt pretty good, but this is on old Rt. 66 and the highway is mostly concrete. My knees didn't like that, but it wasn't too bad. When the sun rose, it began to get hot fast. By mile 24 folks were starting to feel it, and we slowed to more walking than running. One of our group agreed to run on ahead and get the car, and we would call it a day wherever he picked us up. He got back to us at mile 27 just when we were starting to feel better. In any event it was a good run, I got to know two new runners, and as always, they are good people. I'm going to take it easy for the next week, and probably race a 5k next weekend. It has been months since I've raced one, and I'm curious to see where I am speed wise. Enjoy the holiday weekend everyone.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
First let me say I'm just getting in to my hotel room. I started not to do the report until tomorrow, but what else do I have to do besides deal will all these aches and pains.
I made it to the race in plenty of time and waited around for the start. Pretty low key, ready set go. My plan was to hold my heart rate in the 140's and not worry about pace. On a level surface that would be sub 10 minute miles anyway. However, I was soon to learn that this course was anything but level. After about 2 miles you start this wicked ascent. No one was running it but the eventual winner, Valmir Nunes of Brazil. Last years Badwater winner. Many of us wondered why he was at this race, turns out he has a connection with the race director, and is training for Spartathlon, a 152 mile race run in Greece. The ascent is so steep that if it had rained, you wouldn't have been able to get up without holding on to trees. The first two loops went well, I did them both in under 1:30. Each loop was 7.77 miles, and I had to do eight. Also, it was unseasonably hot with no cloud cover. On loop three, the heat was starting to slow me down. If you look at my splits, you'll see that they got progressively slower. After finishing loop four, I seriously thought about dropping. But after staying in the s/f area for a few minutes, I decided to go back out. From here on out, I thought about dropping after finishing every loop. This race had a twelve hour cut-off for starting the last loop, and I finished loop seven in 11:57. I was the last runner allowed to start the 8th loop. I left, and a lady left with me since I was going to be the last runner on the course. I thought there was a fourteen hour cut-off, and I knew I was going to be cutting it close. So I took off on the last loop mostly running until I got to this steep ascent. I thought I could handle it one more time, but when I finished the climb this time, I was dead on my feet. I had to sit down at the aid station. this is an unmanned station, and is about a quarter through the loop. At this point it is closer to go back the way you came than to finish. I told the sweeper, I was going to drop here and head back. This lady, Carolyn said, why don't you think about that, maybe walk for awhile and see if you feel better. You know that climb took a lot out of you, and maybe you'll feel better in a bit. I said, I'll never make the fourteen hour cut-off. She said, they let you continue, you'll be listed. This perked me up a bit and I started walking. But after a little while, I had made up in my mind I was going to drop at the half-way aid station. I was dead on my feet, and could manage to run only a tiny bit on downhills. We made it to the half-way, and these guys had been nothing but great to me the whole time. When we got there, they said they were hoping I had made the last loop cut-off. I said I've got to sit down and make a decision here. While there were no more significant up hills, I just didn't think I could make it. But I sat for a few minutes, ate a bit, and said let's go. By now it was starting get a little dark, we were back in the woods, and I was glad Carolyn had loaned me her flashlight. And she had her headlamp. There was no more running to speak of, and we just powered on. I was now feeling better, I hadn't been much of a conversationalist during the first half, and Carolyn sensed that, and didn't try to engage me. But now we were getting to know each other. We went down the significant downhill, and made it to the bottom where it was pretty much flat to the finish. The crew at the finish line saw our lights, and started yelling my name. I told Carolyn that it was a double edged sword, it was nice to hear my name, but I knew they knew it because I was the only runner left on the course. We took it on in, everyone was great, taking our pictures, making me feel like a star. I finished in 14:25 It turns out I was also the second place Veteran, read old man, so I also got an award for that. While I was the last person to finish, I will say that there were people behind me that didn't make the cut-off. Also, 36 people started, and only 11 finished. I made sure Carolyn understood how much her encouragement meant to me. And this also underscores the value of a partner late in a race like this. Had she not been there, I would have dropped. I am so thankful to have finished this race. Apparently with no injures or illnesses.