Sunday, December 20, 2009

California International Marathon

My apologies for the lateness of this post. I've basically been in a running hiatus, running but not for any real purpose other than to keep my sanity. I have been very busy in business and personal matters.
I entered this race hoping for a personal record. I'd heard that this was a fast course, and it was mostly down hill. By profile it is a more gradual and less of a drop than Tucson, but supposedly move even.
A running club friend was coincidentally running this race also. His reason was to qualify for Boston. We made it to Sacramento with no problems and went to the expo to pick up packets, talk to and listen to Bart Yasso. The next day we drove the course with a couple of other people from Oklahoma.
Race day was cold and windy. The buses to the start were efficient, but not very warm. Still, they were warmer than outside. I left the bus with about 20 minutes to go and made my way to the porta-potties. I got in and out with just minutes to spare. Once again, I was unable to make it to my starting area and ended up in the 4:15 group. We started and I slowly caught up with the 3:45 group. I hoped to run faster, but wanted to hang with them until the halfway point. This course was much hillier than I thought it would be, but everyone said the second half was better. I passed the 1/2 in around 1:50 which is about what I wanted. I hoped to at least even split. I left the 3:45 group hoping for a more downhill course. I assume it was, but again it was hilly to me. I could also tell I was soon going to be having energy problems. I started losing about 10 seconds per mile, and there didn't seem to be anything I could do about it. I was tired, cold, and the wind was blowing in our face. I started walking through the aid stations and continued to slow. I was finally having to walk about every half mile, and even when I ran it was around a 10 minute mile. I finished in about 3:52, quite a bit short of my sub 3:42 goal. I didn't feel bad, just tired, so I wasn't too disappointed. Any finish not hurting is a good finish.
My friend found me at the finish line and told me he had been successful. Great Job David

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Route 66 Half Marathon

This past Sunday, November 22, I ran the Route 66 half marathon in Tulsa. Four years ago this was the site of my first marathon. I decided to run the 1/2 because I'm running a full in two weeks. So I wanted this to be a long tempo run, and to also try to run my best time in a 1/2. My previous best was run in Oregon in a 1/2 that I'm convinced was short.
I felt like I had a good chance to P R because my 12k last week went well, and I was able to hold a fast pace the entire race.
A cousin had died earlier in the week, and I attended his memorial service first. It was good to see friends and relatives there. After that I headed to Tulsa to check into my hotel. After checking in I went to the expo for packet pickup and to check things out. It's a nice little expo and I did see some friends there.
That morning it was a bit cool, perfect in other words. I took the shuttle to the start and met up with more friends, some running the full, others the half. I waited too long to get in the starting area, and got stuck around the 10 minute pace area. Not good. We're off, and in the first two miles I'm working my way around slower people. It was ok, but I would have like to have started a bit faster. My first couple of miles were around 8:30. Not good enough if I wanted to run under 1:41. As I cleared the crowds, and started to warm up, I began bringing the pace down. I was soon around 7:30 and worked on holding that. I never felt bad and in fact ran a few 7:10 miles when I realized that I was going to be cutting it close. When I made the final turn to the finish, I could see the clock inching to 1:41. I wasn't too worried, I knew I had a small chip cushion. I finished with the clock reading over 1:41. When I got my official time, it was 1:40:22. I met one goal, but missed another by 22 seconds. I could have qualified for New York with a time under 1:40:00. But that's ok, I'm not sure I could do New York next year anyway. I have two ultras near that time. I'm very satisfied with my performance, and looking forward to my next marathon in Sacramento in two weeks.
Congratulations to all my friends who ran and who met their goals.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Races & Training

Last week I ran the Race with Stars 5k. This has always been a good race for me and I like the fact that they don't give medals, they give gift certificates and tickets. I had a mild cold the days before the race and decided I would just run and try to be one of the first 300 who would get "an extra prize." Earlier in the year I had picked this race as a possible attempt at a P R. But that was before I decided to run the 24 hour ultra. Coupled with the cold I just decided to run by feel. I did just that and was pleasantly surprised that I still was under 22 minutes. Good enough for 3rd in Age group. Four tickets to a museum I've never heard of. And the extra prize, an LED bracelet.
Yesterday I ran the Race for Hope. This is a 12/5K run to benefit the Oklahoma Brain Tumor Foundation. I like this race and this was my 3rd time running it. I volunteered last year because of my pacing duties that night in the Mother Road 100. Yesterday a cold front came through just before the start. As I was driving to the site at Lake Overholser, I could see clouds and fog ahead. The sun was shining when I left the house. This was a good thing though, as it cooled the race off. I was running the 12k and I wanted to treat it as a tempo run for my half marathon next week. I started out slowly and then as I warmed up, began to pick it up. I wanted to hold around 7:30/mi and at times was below that pace. I felt good the whole time and finished just over 54 minutes. I didn't realize that this was a sub 7:15 pace. It ended up being good enough for 1st in age group.
After the race I went to lunch at church for the men's ministry. It was a good day including having to get a slow leak fixed on my car.
This morning I did a nice 10 miles of trails at Draper Lake. Cloudy, light rain, great run.
Looking forward to my half marathon next week, and my full at the California International Marathon in Sacramento. I've also registered for the Boston Marathon.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

24 The Hard Way

While I am excited about my 24 hour run this past weekend, I have to spend a moment remembering someone else.
My cousin Jimmy (Married to my 1st cousin) died last week. He had Leukemia but chose not to tell anyone, including his wife and daughter. He aslo refused any treatment. So when he went into the hospital a week ago Saturday (Oct 17th) and died two days later, it was a big surpise to everyone. Who am I to question his decision. All I can say is the man was fun to be around. He was a coach and a teacher, and the funeral was packed with his fomer students and atheletes. Less than twenty-four hours after finishing my run, I was driving in the pouring rain to his service south of Dallas. And now, back to the run.
I got up Saturday morning not knowing how the days run was going to go. The plus is since this race was in Oklahoma City, I didn't have to travel, and could sleep a bit later than usual. Our race started at 9:00 A.M. Saturday morning. We started, and I started running very slow. This was a .97 mile loop so I was trying to keep my early loops under 12 minutes. As the day wore on, I was able to pick it up just a bit. I didn't ever want to go much below 10 minutes, because I knew I had a long way to go. After 30 miles, I decided to take a 45 minute break. The other nice thing about this being a local race was I could walk to my car. I laid down and listened to the start of the OU-Kansas game. After returning to the course I continued to run into the dark. While you might think that this continually running the same loop would be monotonous, it really wasn't. As night wore on I grew more fatiqued and decided to take a longer rest. When I came back I was into my 3rd time hitting the wall. I tried various things to get over it, but in the end only time would work. The night running was hard but I was never sleepy and even during my rest times I never went to sleep. When the day broke I had a mild recovery and continued to try to keep sub 20 minute miles. I was now walking the slight up hills and "jogging" the downs. They had a computer monitor just as you crossed the timing mat, and you could see where you and others stood. My friend Bill, who helped crew and pace me at my first 100 mile race, was running his first ultra. I could see he was getting close to 100 miles, and was hoping he would make it. That's him with me crossing the mat for his 100th mile. He ended up with slightly over 100. My total ended up being 87 miles. While that is my 2nd highest total ever, I was a bit dissapointed in having taken the breaks. Without them, and assuming I could have kept going, I should have been able to get to 100 also. On the other hand, it also tells me to be able to run longer without breaks, I need to train longer. My longest training runs were around 32 miles. I probably needed a couple of 50 mile runs. I'm not sure I need to do this again, but I'm sure I'll want to later.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Spirit of Survival Marathon

Today I ran the Spirit of Survival Marathon. From their website:
"The Spirit of Survival Marathon is unique because it is the only USATF certified race approved to run through one of the nation’s 547 Wildlife Refuges. For the individual looking for the ultimate wildlife racing experience, this event offers the opportunity to run while observing wildlife in its natural habitat."
Doesn't that just sound wonderful? Well I ran this race last year because it was on my birthday. It was unseasonably hot for Oct in Oklahoma, and I went out way too fast for this very hilly course. This morning it was raining and a bit chilly. The race is about 90 miles from Oklahoma City, and a group of us left the city at 4 this morning. It rained all the way, and was raining when we got there. But as it got close to start time, the rain eased up. It still was wet the entire race, but a nice gentle cooling rain. I promised myself since I now knew this course, I would run it smarter. And since I was treating this as a training run, I decided that I would get under 4 hours if I could, but not worry about it. I started out running with a friend, and as we talked, the miles seemed to go by easily. We ran the flats sub 9 minute miles, and the hills plus 9's. My friend had to make a potty stop, so I kept going and we didn't run together anymore. As with most marathons I had my ups and downs, but kept telling myself that I would push through the downs, and take advantage of the ups. I passed the 1/2 marathon mark at 1:58. I had no plans to try to negative split, but I thought that I could maybe have close to even splits. The second half I started getting fatigued, and we made a turn at mile 15 that turned us into a brisk headwind. But I kept pushing on trying to average right at 9's. When I hit around 20 miles, I allowed myself to walk for a minute. It was a struggle to keep running 9's. As I got closer I realized I could average 10's and make it under 4hours. I was able to stay close to 9:30's and finished in 3:58. Making my splits 1:58/2:00. Anytime my splits are that close, it's a good race. When I finished I was so beat I almost couldn't stand. I sat down and felt terrible, couldn't eat anything, but could drink and I had the chills. One of my friends who was driving said they have showers and you'll feel better. I doubted it, but since I was riding in his car I figured a shower was a good idea anyway. I got under the hot water and was feeling better in no time. The warm up did wonders. I'm sore of course, but feeling pretty good. Afterward we went to this famous hamburger place and had lunch. Back to the city and getting ready to go to work tomorrow. Get friends, great race, great day.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Renaissance Run & What's Important

Today I ran 16 miles at lake Hefner, and in a couple hours I'm going to go run 6 easy miles in my Vibram Five Fingers. I promise a report soon, but I feel that I don't have enough experience yet with only about 25 miles on them.
I ran the Renaissance Run yesterday. This was my first major race of my running career. Up until I ran this race 4 years ago, I ran little small town races of usually less than 50 people. It is very well run but a bit hilly. However, I always seem to do well here. I ran it in 21:08 and that was good enough for 1st place in age group. Even though there were two other races in the area, there were over 300 people in this one.
My son and grand daughter spent the last two nights here with me. As I was getting ready for my race first my son then his daughter climbed into my bed. As I was leaving my bedroom to head out for the race, my grand daughter said "pa pa, come here." She hugged me and said "have a good race." Then she laid down and went back to sleep. That's what's important.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Makin' Tracks 5k & Training

Yesterday I ran the Makin' Tracks 5k. I've run this before and it is moderately hilly. I still wanted to see where I stood but wasn't going to hurt myself if I could help it. I didn't blog about my last 5k before this one. How much more can I say about these? It was overcast and looked like rain. In retrospect the rain would have helped, but it held off. I started out too fast, go figure, running the first mile around 6:30. After that it was slower each mile. The humidity was terrible and many runners were suffering afterward. I finished in 21:25, slowest of my last 3 5k's but good enough for 3rd AG.
Today was a scheduled 16 mile training run with the club. It is two loops around Lake Overholser. It rained all afternoon yesterday, all night, and was raining when I got up this morning. I considered not going, but it was an easy rain no lightning. I was early and a friend asked if I'd like to do 2 easy before the start. Duh, OK, let's do it. I started with the club for the 16 and fell in with a group running a pace I thought I could maintain. It appears there was some miscommunication on water stops, and we had to get water from a garden hose after about 4 miles. Then finish the first loop with no more. They did get one up at the start, and promised there would be more on the second loop. So I started out on the second and really started picking things up. There was water this time and I finished with a total of 19 miles. Things seem to be going well with my training. I'm less than a month away from a marathon I plan to run as a training/birthday run.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Jean Michel Jarre

This artist isn't for everyone. If you don't like computer generated music, you won't like him. This is an atypical song for him though, it is mostly "pan music." Steel drums as in Caribbean music. This song, Calypso, is inspired by the French oceanographer Jacques-Yves Cousteau. This is a live concert performed in Paris. Jarre holds the worlds record for the largest outdoor concerts with an audience of 3.5 million people at a concert in Russia. His set a world record of 1.5 million in Houston.
All of this information is from Wikepedia.
Oh to see him live in concert.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Run With the Bulls

Yesterday I "Ran with the Bulls." No, this is not a Pamplona style event. It is only called that because it starts and ends at the Oklahoma City Stockyards. I've run this race before, and it is well run and well attended. They give a tech shirt, and serve hamburgers after the race. The course is a simple out and back with one moderate hill that you see twice obviously. I've been feeling good lately, and felt like I could have a good race, not a P R, but maybe the best of the year. I started just a bit slow, but sub 4:10/KM. I saw 3 people I knew were similar in speed and hung with them for awhile. I passed all but one and stalked him until about the 4th K where he was steady, but I had to slow a bit. When I could see the clock, I realized that I had just missed sub-21. But that was ok. 21:01 chip time and 5th in age group. It was a fast bunch in the group. Still that is my fastest 5k this year.
Today I ran a 6 mile tempo run with the club. They were doing 12, so I drove to the 3mile mark, waited for some friends, then did the 3 mile out and back with them. After that, I decided to go to the park and run/walk 3 miles in my new Vibram fivefingers. More about them in a later post.
Later today I've agreed to run 14 miles with a friend.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


I had a great 9 mile run this morning, in the country, by myself. What was so great about it? See the second part of the first sentence.
Below is a paragraph I stole from another blog:
Reality: Once in a while you get a chance to impact someones life and you can only hope that the impact that was left is positive and one that will always make that person feel they were glad they met you. Your impact on this earth is very minimal in reality. We are just a second of the existence of earth. Most certainly only one or two people you know today will be here in 100 years. Most of us in our 30s will be dead in 50 years. Over half of everyone we know will be gone. That car, that house, that bill, that pain in the ass neighbor, the mean boss, the hard expectations on and on. It all just does not matter in the big scheme of life.
The writer has had some medical issues, is improving, but had in his words a "mental health break down yesterday a pretty bad one."
Why the picture above? This month marks 25 years since I've had a drink. For many that doesn't mean a thing. A few will understand. For me drinking is not an option. I didn't drink like normal people drink. And I was headed to one of three places, the street, prison, or the cemetery. I have only been running for 5 years, so the two aren't connected, at least not closely. I have at least two co-readers (we read each other's blogs) who are wine connoisseurs. I look forward to toasting our online friendship one day, but I'll have Martinelli's sparkling cider.
There are plenty of places to discuss Rick Pitino, Michael Vick, National Health Care, and all the topics of the day. This isn't one of them.
My granddaughter is in Atlanta, I miss her. As of today, all of my immediate family is out of town. A break every now and then is good, for everyone.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Two Lakes 50k

Joel contacted me around mid-week asking if I'd like to join him for a 30 mile run. I said yes. We went over our options, three times around Hefner, two times around Hefner and take the connector between Hefner and Overholser. From the time I discovered you could run between the two lakes, I've wanted to loop them both in one run. So we decided to loop both lakes. We estimated that would get us close to thirty miles. But since Joel worked near the course, we made an aid station stop there and that got us beyond 30 miles. We had planned to start at 5 a.m., but it was raining on my side of town so we started 20 minutes late. It was nice and cool then and we started off easily. Even when the sun came up it was still cloudy. When we got to Overholser it started to heat up and the clouds began to dissipate. We pushed on. Things went fairly well and when we got back to Hefner, we knew we had it made albeit at a very easy pace. We finished right at 31 miles in about 5:55, just under a 12 minute pace. We are both training for a twenty-four hour run in October.
Today I decided to do an easy six miles at Earlywine Park.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Midnight Streak & Training

Last night I ran the Midnight Streak. Two problems with that name, first it isn't at Midnight, and second it's not a streak in the old running naked sense. Anyway this was my first time running this night race run at the State Fairgrounds. It is a large race, around 1,000 people. It was hot and humid, but a cool front was scheduled to come in soon. We started at 11:00 P.M. and I had decided to run a little slow to keep from overheating. I felt pretty good and started picking things up. We had one mild uphill and there were sprinklers on the course so I ran through them. I finished and saw that my time was better than I had hoped, 21:55. Good enough for third in age group, first in my age group was a 56 year old man who ran 18:09.
Yesterday morning I ran 7 miles on trails with some friends from the trail running club. This morning I ran 9 miles on different trails with two friends. I'm feeling pretty good lately and hope it continues.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

El Scorcho - No más

In my room trying to sleep. Can't seem to wind down. The short story is I didn't finish. I ran 6 loops and just couldn't do any more. Why? I hurt, I couldn't keep anything down, and I was dizzy and wobbling. I wanted it to stop, so I did. More after I get some sleep and drive to San Antonio.
Ok, I'm in San Antonio and I guess it's time for the longer version. I tried to nap before the race last night, but was unable to. It's just hard to change my routine, and I try never to nap because it makes it hard for me to go to sleep later. I got up and drove to the site around 11:00. I felt good at that time and then at midnight we were off. My goal was to hold 30 minute 5k's but to do the first loop just a little slower. Give things and people time to shake out. First loop around 31 minutes and not feeling bad. Second loop still feeling ok and pick up the pace just a bit. Finished in 29 and have my average where I want it. Third loop, working hard. Still on pace, but not feeling great. I've been drinking water and Heed at every aid station, two per loop. Fourth loop, not feeling well and had to start walking. Head was hurting, and couldn't drink anything but water, anything else to drink or eat just made me nauseous. I felt like quitting, but told myself I have to at least make 25k. Fifth loop, felt terrible, head hurt, legs hurt, feet hurt, and was dizzy. Kept drinking, lost it twice, but kept going. Decided I was going to drop at the end of this loop. I came through somewhere around 40 minutes. I decided to sit down for awhile and just see if I felt better. After 10 or 15 minutes I was going to turn in my chip, but instead started on the sixth lap. Again I was walking as much as running, still dizzy and unsteady. I decided I would drop this time. Around 45 minutes for this loop. I almost dropped when I went through the timing map but again decided to sit down and see if things would get better. After about 20 minutes I still didn't feel any better, so I dropped.
I was bummed out about this, but today I still feel like I made the right decision. I can't explain what happened, I've gone farther than this in training, but things just didn't go right. I don't know if it was the heat, if I was sick before I started and it just got worse. I just don't know. I feel ok today, just the usual soreness and some fatigue but no different than if I had run 20 miles in training. This was my first DNF and I hope it doesn't make another one easy. But for now I'm not dwelling on the negative.

Friday, July 17, 2009

El Scorcho & San Antonio

Just a brief update. I'm headed to Ft. Worth TX tomorrow to run a 50k called El Scorcho. It starts at midnight Saturday night. Then after finishing the race, and maybe a nap I'm heading to San Antonio on business.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Hanging by a thread

Tuesday I called a supplier who was way behind on shipping us some parts. A man answered the phone, and as soon as I told him who I was, he said "your parts aren't ready." An odd response I thought from someone we'd done business with for over 30 years. I politely asked when he thought they would be ready, and he said Friday. Today a lady from the company called, and told me the man who I'd spoken to, the owner, committed suicide. He was 57 with a wife, children, and grandchildren.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

4th of July

Not that I'm a big time patriot, but it's odd to me that today is better known as the 4th of July than Independence Day.
This morning I ran the Freedom Run. It was hot but overcast. I thought that it would be a little easier than my last 8k. Wrong, it was not sunny, but it was still 85 degrees. I started off easier and felt like I was running a pace I could sustain. But after 5k I started suffering. There was a water stop at 6k so I slowed to a walk, took two cups, poured one over me and drank the other. I finished and took 3rd in age group. Later a group of us met at Starbucks and hung around for awhile. It has been a good day, and my training is going well. I'm still not racing as well as I think I should, but I just chalk it up to the heat.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Super Summer 8k & Green People Run

Saturday I ran the Super Summer 8k. It was hot, humid and I ran too hard. I had to walk during the 6th k. I was dizzy and needed to rest a moment. I finished ok, and after a while felt much better. Second in age group and a nice hat. Again, nice to get something other than a medal.
After that, I went over to the nearby Bluff Creek Trails. It was the annual Green People Run and poker game. You signed in, got 3 cards, and then for every 3.5 mile loop of the trails you ran, you got two more cards. I only ran two loops, and even then I feel like I overdid it a bit. This is put on by the Trail Running Club that I belong to, and it is a nice get together. Beer, food, and other drinks.
I had a nice father's day. Family took my son and I out to dinner, and got to spend some time with my granddaughter.
We have now entered the time of year that I hate in Oklahoma. We will be near or over 100 degrees for the next week. Hot, humid and just terrible weather to be in. The Oklahoma City Newspaper, which I refuse to subscribe to, always can be counted on to run a cartoon in winter when we have very cold and snowy weather making fun of Global Warming. They never run that cartoon in the summer.
I see no real benefit to run in the evenings, so I'm trying to get my runs in early.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A First for Me

A couple of weeks ago I got the bright idea to run a track 5k. I thought I could do better because of the even surface. A couple of things I didn't take into account were, that it would be afternoon before it started, and it would be very hot.
The run was yesterday. The schedule said that the 5k would start around 10:30. So I arrived at the suburban high school track around 9:30. It was warm, but completely overcast. I thought this would be good. I did a few easy warm up laps, and then they cleared the track. So I went into the stands to watch the events. This went slow in my opinion, but I've never attended a track meet before. But to me there was way too much time between events. There weren't too many people running the 5k so they put us all together, which was fine with me because otherwise the masters group would have been last. We line up, and start. If you've never run a track 5k, it's 12.5 laps around the track. Each 2.5 laps = 1k. So we start at the 200 meter mark, halfway around the track, so we can finish at the s/f line. Since it was so hot, and now all the clouds were gone, I had thrown out all ideas of a great time and just decided not to overdo it. Several people that I felt were slower started out much faster than I did. But I had passed most of them by the 3rd lap, and lapped all of them before the finish. Don't get me wrong, I was lapped also, and double lapped by the leaders. They have a sign at the s/f line with "laps to go" but that is only for the leaders if you get lapped. I was wearing my Garmin, and I knew how far I had to go. They tried to bring me in a lap early, and I almost let them do it, but I continued on around for the last lap. Just before I finished, I lapped a guy, I knew I had lapped him, because he was one that had started fast, and I had passed before the 3rd lap. Anyway, they told him he was finished right after me. I knew he had another lap, but I didn't say anything. He came up to me and asked me if I didn't think he had another lap to go, I said I wouldn't worry about it, it really doesn't matter since we're not high schoolers. I finished in 22:41. Not great, but good enough for 1st in age group. I would like to do another track 5k, but under much better conditions.
Today I decided to run trails. I had the idea that I would just take it easy, and run all the colors of the Draper trails. I ran green, blue, red, green, orange, green, and yellow. I tacked on a little more to make it an even 10 miles. It was very humid, but I go an early start so it wasn't too hot.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Where Dreams are Born

The Ending! Two-Thousand Years Later!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Sooner State Games 1/2 Marathon

First, I don't want you to forget about my little quiz. Click here, and I'm adding three clues. One, it's a movie, two it was made in this century (21st), three, it's Sci-fi.
Saturday I had decided to run this 1/2 marathon. I wanted to see where I stood training wise, and see if I was heat acclimated. It was overcast, but very humid, hot, and windy. Hmmmm, I bet I could switch to the 5 or 10k. In fact, I would have had a chance to be top 3 in the 10, but I couldn't have known that, and besides, my goal was to see how I could do in a longer run. This could be a nice little race, but has had problems over the years. It was to have a few today also. We started, and as usual in a longer race, I started a bit slow. By mile one I started pulling my pace down to sub 8's. It felt good, and I felt like one I could sustain. I hadn't made the turn into the wind yet. Just after the 3.5 mile mark, we head into the wind. It's still early, so I don't feel too bad, but the problem here was there should have been an aid station around mile 4.5 - 5. On a cool day, this wouldn't have been a problem but today it was. So I had to make it to the 6.55 turn around for more aid. Then back to the 10k turn around for the next station, over 4 miles. I started walking about 30 seconds every mile after the turn around. But I must have had a lot of company because no one passed me (for good) in the 2nd half. With less than one mile to go this guy did pass me, but I found the strength to pass him back and run to the finish. My main goal here was to stay under 1:50 and I did, 1:49and change. Second in age group and lots of fluids. Which they ran out of at the finish line. They went to get more, but still not good.
Yesterday I had promised a friend to do 14 miles with him. So we did it, but neither of us could find out groove, and ended up doing it very slowly. Today I'm still dragging, but I don't think it's anything a day or two of recovery won't cure.

Friday, June 5, 2009

A Love Supreme

While I'm using John Coltrane's title and cover art, it is in no way connected with this post. I just think that the title works for what I'm saying. Another title I thought of was "The Greatest Love Story ever told." And I'm not getting religious or spiritual here. I have just finished with what I think these titles describe, and I'd like you to "name that story." The only hint I'll give you right now is that this story spanned over two thousand years. Again, it's not religious.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Mt. Scott Road Trip

Saturday a group of friends from the running club decided to do a road trip to the Wichita Mountains, run up Mt. Scott and then go to Meers for their famous hamburgers. We met to carpool and headed down to the park. It was a great group. It was what I love, a group of people who you don't have to watch what you say around. We ran/walked up the mountain (big hill for those of you in states with real mountains). It was about 3 miles up, and it was a good workout. We stayed at the top and took a lot of pictures, and then headed back down. It was hard to hold back, and finally after I realized I had a chance to run my fastest mile ever, I just let go. I was running close to a 6:15 minute mile. My best total mile was 6:23, but Garmin says my fastest pace was 5:45. If only.........
It was starting to get hot, and we decided to head on to part two, Meers for hamburgers. You usually have to wait in line here, but we got there almost at opening time, so we got right in. I had eaten here once before after the Spirit of Survival Marathon on my birthday last year, but I was sick after finishing and really didn't enjoy the visit. I enjoyed it much better this time. It was a great road trip, and we're planning another one at the end of this month.
Sunday I ran trails with some Trail running club friends. And this morning I did some speed work.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Weekend & Dog Jog 8k

Friday through Sunday afternoon I was at my mother's. Which is where I am during the week. There is a rodeo in my hometown and it is the biggest day of the year there. It's not the same to me, but it's still a homecoming of sorts. I got to spend some quality time with my granddaughter. She begged me to let her stay with me when her mother was going to leave. I said ok, and about 30 minutes later she was throwing a fit to see her mother. I knew she was tired, and she always gets cranky when she's been up longer than usual. So I just suffered through until she fell asleep. The next morning she woke up, I was already up, and she apologized to me. She is always at her best for the first few hours of the morning.
We went to the cemetery and then headed back home. This morning I decided to run this 8k here called the Dog Jog. It is to benefit a dog charity and encourage responsible pet ownership. I don't have a dog, but I like them. I ran this and it was hot and humid. I was having a hard time keeping up the effort, but ran well considering how bad I felt. I finished in just over 36 minutes. Over a minute off my P R, but good enough for 2nd in age group. Again, they gave a useful prize. Gift certificates to Sonic. All in all a good weekend.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Patience is a virtue

Years ago I heard this song. I didn't know the name, but I knew it was by Jean Luc Ponty. I became acquainted with his music through the Mahavisnu Orchestra lead by John McLaughlin. Ponty was on Visions of the Emerald Beyond. But back to this song. It touched me then, and I vowed I would buy the album. I figured I wouldn't have any problem finding it even though I didn't know the name. Wrong, I could not find this song. Remember this is pre internet, and my only real choice was to buy albums until I found it. I didn't, and so I gave up searching actively for it. I thought, I'll hear it again someday. That was over 15 years ago. Recently I've been using Pandora. I created a station beginning with Delerium and was just listening yesterday, and this song comes on. I jumped up to see what the name was, and it was this ambitious title "Computer Incantations for World Peace." If you care to listen to it, click below. And I ask that if you do, pay particular attention to the change that happens around 2:38. Remember those who are important to you.

Jean-Luc Ponty - Computer Incantations For World Peace
Found at bee mp3 search engine

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Boathouse Tri & Training

Yesterday I volunteered to work at this Tri. It was a great experience to see these class athletes from the US, Canada, Mexico, Central and South America. I got to see the swim start and the transition to bikes and run. I was working the run part, and so I saw them all come through twice for the 5k run. It was great to see all these international athletes and I got to practice a little Spanish.
My maintenance training has been going well. This week I did a little speed work with 1/2 mile intervals, and I tried to do a tempo run, but it was so hot, I had to turn it into an easy run. I ran several 8 minute miles, but felt like I was going to get sick, so I cut it short. I haven't acclimated to the hot weather yet. Today I did a 20 mile long run, two loops around Hefner including the Stars and Stripes loop. I wanted to do the second loop faster, but I didn't fuel before the first, or take any water with me, so by the second loop I didn't feel like picking up the pace, and just barely forced myself to go back out. I did average a faster second loop, but that was because I ran the first two miles of the first loop over 10:30 each. All in all it was a good run, my longest since Boston. I don't have anything on the calendar, so I'm just trying to be in shape should I make a spur of the moment decision to run something long.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Running & More in So Cal

I am staying in Huntington Beach for business. Yesterday evening I went for a 10 mile (5 out & back) run along the beach. I could get used to this. I have run north of here before. From Marina Del Rey north, and south. I don't know how much more running I will get in, because the business part of this trip starts in earnest today. I'm here for the filming of an infomercial. And while this is not a movie or TV series, the parts I've seen have been very interesting. I still may run a trail race this Saturday, but will have to play it by ear, and it may be sold out even if I do have the time.

Sunday I did an 8 mile progression run. I started off slow, and then started doing progressively faster kilometers. Finishing with 2 4:30's. Not as fast as I would like, but I feel like I need to ease back into speed work while incorporating the stretches the doc prescribed.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Bricktown Blaze - Training & Injuries

I ran this 5k yesterday. This is an evening race to benefit Limbs for Life Foundation. I knew about this race, but had never run it before. It's a downtown race that starts and ends near the Redhawaks (Minor League Baseball Team) stadium. It was a nice cool evening overcast but not raining. That was one reason I signed up for this race. In past years it has been hot for this race. I saw the long range forecast predicting temperatures in the 50's. We've had more rain than we've needed lately. At 5:30, right on time, we start. This race takes you out from downtown just a bit then returns. Nothing spectacular about the course, gentle rolling hills. I was not feeling my best, but didn't feel bad either. I was able to hold 4:30/k's or better. I finished in 22:01, 1st in age group. The age group prize was a baseball. It's always nice to get something other than a medal.
Friday I went to see the running doc. I made an appointment with him to try to work on some minor problems before they became stoppers. I saw him before the office visit, and he told me "you know you don't have to come to my office?" He is often at our group runs, treating people out of his SUV. But as I told him, I needed his undivided attention. He diagnosed my problems, told me they were minor and gave me some stretches and exercises to fix them. My training has been on the back burner because I didn't want to aggravate any of my issues. This week I head to Southern California for work. I'll be there from Tuesday to Saturday. Depending on my schedule I may run a 22k trail race in Malibu Creek State Park.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Oklahoma City Marathon - Pictures

I ran with the legends yesterday, and cheered the runners on today. I have a new toy, a Kodak Zi6 video camera. This is similar to the Flip. My skills are poor since this is only my 2nd day using the camera. Needless to say I didn't realize how jerky the video would be since I was walking, so I cut pictures from my videos. If any of you in the pictures want the video, let me know. The sound is outstanding. The first two pictures were taken by a friend, thanks Arnie, with his camera. One is me with Bill (Boston Billy) Rodgers and the other is me with Joan Samuelson. By the way, Joan was 1st place female in the half. At 51 years old she ran 1:21:57.
The runners did a great job today despite the hot, humid and windy conditions.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The 113th Boston Marathon

Wow.... I wasn't prepared for this. I don't mean physically, I mean mentally. Going into this, I just wasn't buying into the hype that is the Boston Marathon. But they made a believer out of me today.
I went to the expo on yesterday and it was crowded but I wasn't impressed with it. I did buy one of the overpriced official jackets, but felt like I had to have one. I also saw Team Hoyt there.
I was looking for Kara Goucher to get an autographed pic for Wille, but alas she wasn't there.
I awoke this morning and caught the shuttle from my hotel to the race shuttle buses and then made the 26 mile trip to the start. The athletes village was ok. There were plenty of drinks and energy bars but it was crowded. The good thing is that the weather wasn't too bad. Rain was predicted for later in the day, but it was overcast and a bit chilly. It was below freezing when I got up, but it was probably in the high 30's low 40's by the time we were outside.
Ok time to line up in the corrals. Then we're off, it took about 3 minutes to cross the start and then we were running. This is the largest marathon I've ever run, and I was worried about having room to run. It does take a lot of energy to get through when you're running just a bit faster than some. From almost the start there was great crowd support. And there was never a time without that support. Every city we ran through was extremely supportive. All the parts you've heard about now I was seeing. Hopkinton, Ashland, Framingham, Natick, Wellesley, let's stop here for a moment. As we approached Wellesley I heard this loud noise. A sign warned us to cover our ears. As we hit Wellesley (Women's) College, the ladies were screaming and had signs that said kiss me. I picked me out one, and moved over to plant a kiss on her. About 15 seconds lost, but I wasn't going to miss this opportunity. On to Newton, Brookline, Brighton, and Boston. This is a hilly course and while it is a net downhill, it is not what you'd think of as a downhill course. It is hard on you and takes a lot out of you. Before we hit the halfway point, there were people walking the hills. On the bus I overheard a conversation where this guy said "don't worry about Heartbreak Hill, you'll run over it and wonder, was that it?" I knew where it was before we climbed and certainly didn't wonder "was that it?" It is hard on you around mile 20, but it also isn't the last hill as I thought it was. Around mile 19 I passed Team Hoyt, and it looked like he was having a hard time. I was almost in tears thinking about them and the dedication of father Hoyt to his son. Around 22 I saw Bill Rodgers (Boston Billy) over to the side and he seemed to be having problems. I checked and he finished just over 4 hours. Which means he did indeed have problems because he is much faster than that.
I had already mentioned two things, (1) one of my New Years goals was to run Boston in under 4 hours, and (2) that my IT Band problems might derail that goal. I started out running just under 9 minute miles because the start is a steep downhill. On level ground I tried to hold 9's, lower downhill and higher uphill. Around mile 18 my IT Band put out a little dull pain, then looked up at me and smiled and said, just don't want you to forget about me, but I know how bad you want this, so I'm going to give you a break today. No more IT Band problems. That is not to say that I didn't have other problems. I was starting to hurt around 20 and had just under an hour to finish. I walked a bit on a couple of the hills near the top and then started back running when it leveled off. That seemed to work well, and I still was holding close to 9:15's, which if I was able to hold would just get me in under 4. At mile 25 I wanted to walk so bad because they were still teasing us with hills. But I knew that I was too close to 4 to do any walking. They have a sign that says one mile to go, and when I hit that I started picking it up a bit. Another hill, oh well just kept pushing and topped it, turned left and I could see the finish line in the distance. I like that because I kept up my pace and took it on in. I didn't know for sure if I had beaten 4 because the clock was gun time and I didn't beat 4 there. But my Garmin said 3:59 and change. Official time 3:59:35. Mission Accomplished.
I don't know if I'll run this marathon again, I'm qualified for next year also, but I've learned not to say what I'll do right after the race.
This is an awesome race if the conditions are right. While we had a head wind off and on, the conditions were still good.
I am also pleased that I have accomplished two of the four goals I set for myself this year.
Blessed that I was able to finish this race with no apparent injuries.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Pre-Boston Marathon

I made it to Boston safely. Nothing really to report. I feel under trained for this marathon. But I am determined to run it. I didn't make it to the expo today. I walked to the subway, then remembered that I needed this postcard to get my bib. I was at the station getting ready to buy my tickets when this revelation came to me. So I just walked back to my hotel and decided to wait until tomorrow.
I just finished reading Willie's blog. I feel you brother. I haven't run this week either. I told myself I need to let my body heal, but the truth is I haven't felt up to running. On the flip side, I have read other peoples blogs, and it seems like several are going or have recently gone through this. Hopefully I will get over it soon. I plan to blog one more time before the marathon, or I may just add to this one since it is a bit short.

Sunday, April 5, 2009


I wanted to race this weekend, but didn't want to run in the Redbud Classic. The classic is a huge race, plus it is Sunday afternoon, and I wanted to run long Sunday morning.

The Patrick Frensley Memorial is a 5k run in memory of a young man (College Student) who was killed by a train....... while running. I didn't know this story until I had finished and a friend asked me if I knew the story of this race. He had a slight grin on his face and I wondered why. I thought it was strange to get hit by a train while running (sober), but then I thought back to my youth and in my mind I could see him thinking even if he didn't beat the train to the crossing, he would be able to see he wasn't going to make it and stop in time. It is also my understanding that he did beat the engine, but there was something sticking out that caught him.

I made the 20 minute drive to the start of the race. The weather was warm, but very windy. This is an out and back, so I thought the wind would be against me at the start, but with me on the way back. While it is an out and back, it is not straight out and back. It seemed that the wind was against me no matter which direction I was going. On the way back I was pretty much by myself. There was one lady right in front of me, and I heard someone tell her she was 3rd female, so I thought, I'll stalk you for a while then pass you. I passed her with about 1.5 k to go and there was no more incentive to go faster. I wasn't going to catch anyone else, and no one was going to catch me. I finished in 22:07. First in age group and that was ok. This is a nice little race, and I would do it again.

Today the running club was doing their last 20 miler in preparation for the Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon. I did not plan to do 20, but wanted to test my IT Band up to 16 miles. The difference between today and yesterday's weather was the high Sat. was 80. The low this morning was 37. I knew a cold front was coming in and thought I was ready for it. I woke up this morning, checked the temp, 39. A little warmer than I expected, but the wind was howling like there was a winter storm going on. The weather man said these were tropical storm grade winds. I made a decision not to run with them, but wait till the sun came up and it warmed up a bit more. I also figured it might be smarter to do my miles on a loop course in case my IT Band flared up I could stop immediately. Whereas if I had run with the club, it was possible that I could be up to 8 miles from my car and would have to walk back. When I left, it was all the way up to 41, a whopping 2 degrees warmer. And the wind was still howling. I ran one untimed lap (1.5 miles) to warm up then started my Garmin. First lap at 9 minute miles. Then I sort of got into a groove and started doing 8:10-30 minute miles. I treated it like a true race pace, and when there was a headwind, I backed off, and when there was a tailwind let it take me away. I was able to do 16 miles, with an average pace of 8:30. While I did feel my band tightening up, it never hurt. That gives me hope that I may be able to run the entire Boston Marathon in a couple of weeks. I am determined to do it, but may fall short of my proclaimed goal of doing it under 4 hours.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Chicago's Lake Shore Drive - My Run

Since Wednesday I've been in Traverse City Michigan. You can fly directly there but I saved over $500 flying into Chicago and making the 6 hour drive (one way) there. The weather is not bad, but I did pass through quite a bit of snow on the way there. It was just pretty snow, coming down hard but not sticking to the road. After finishing work last night I drove a few hours then spent the night in Holland MI. When I resumed my trip this morning, I kept seeing these signs for a big casino in New Buffalo MI. I decided to stop there and play a little video poker. This is a pretty large casino. I found a machine and started playing. I hit for $75 (I was playing a quarter machine) within about 10 minutes. I decided to lose up to $5 of that and quit. I did just that. So I only spend about 20 minutes in the casino and then resumed my trip to Chicago. I arrived in Chicago around 1 and decided to visit my maternal roots. My mother is from Chicago, and every summer until I left for college we would spend two weeks visiting my grandmother. My mother had two sisters living there, and one from Brooklyn who would plan her vacation to be in Chicago at the same time. I drove to the S side and turned onto Evans from 47th street. My grandmother lived at 4736 S. Evans. When I was a kid 47th street was jumping. It's pretty dead now and looks like a ghetto. When we used to visit it was brimming with activity of black folks hustling and bustling and running businesses. Theaters and restaurants, blues and jazz clubs, just people taking care of business and having a good time. Maybe it is selective memory, but to me it was a great place and a great time.
After my drive down memory lane I headed out toward Midway Airport and my hotel. Midway is west of Chicago and their secondary airport after O'Hare. I checked in and changed into my running clothes to head near downtown and Lakeshore drive. I parked near the Shedd Aquarium and headed N. on Lakeshore. My car read 63 degrees at my hotel, but it was closer to 45 at the lake. I turned around after about 1/4 mile to go back and get my gloves. I picked them up and headed N again. I ran almost past down town, about 4 miles out and then turned around. It's nice to run beside the lake and see the people and activity, but the trail really is not that nice. It is mostly concrete and is cambered toward the lake as you hit the downtown area. I finished up with 8 miles, and headed back to my hotel. I leave in the morning to head back home.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

"St. Paddy's Day Great Race of the Great Plains"

Yesterday I ran this 8k. This is a well done and well attended race. Since it's in the middle of March, you never know what the weather will be like. Last year it was cold and windy. This year it was overcast and rain was possible. It was cool, mid 40's, but not cold. There was no wind. I decided I wanted to hold 4:30 k's which would put me right at 36 minutes. We started and when I checked my watch, I was doing right at 4. I knew that was too fast and I backed off just a bit to 4:20. This course is at Lake Hefner, which is why it was unusual not to be windy, and is an out, back past the start and then back to the finish. I felt good in the first half, and started feeling even better. I never really fell below the 4:30 mark and picked it up to 4:15 for the last k. This resulted in a new P R 34:45, ok, by 2 seconds, but I'll take them where I can get them. That was good enough for 2nd in my age group, 1st did it in 30 minutes so I don't have to kick myself for not cutting a few seconds off my time. This race gave trophies for everything including age group placings. This race did what I wish more races would do. If you won a top 3 trophy, you didn't get both that and the age group trophy. Since the guy that beat me won 2nd place masters, I got the 1st place trophy.

Today I ran with the running club. They were doing 11 miles, supposed to be 12 but there is construction on the course. I ran fairly conservatively, but overdid it just a bit. I've been having some IT band issues, and it flares up around 8 miles. I've been stretching it but I need to keep my runs under 8 until I get over this.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Creek Classic & Training Run

Yesterday I ran the Creek Classic. This is a 5 & 10 K run in a suburb of OKC. It is not a bad run, but has a bad component which I'll mention later. In years past the 5k was part of the running club series, this year it was the 10k. It was a very windy day but not cold. I knew when we headed south into the wind it would be a problem. But one we all had to deal with. We started and I was trying to hold 4:30 kilometers. I was able to do this until we made the turn south and then my pace dropped quite a bit. The race finishes with a turn W then N. When we headed west I thought I would get some relief but it was not to be. The crosswind was almost as bad as the head wind. I wanted to stop and walk but resisted the urge. When we turned south with a tail wind I picked it back up a bit and was able to finish strong. I heard footsteps behind me and thought I'm not letting anyone do that to me at the end. I finished and my time was 45:54. Good enough for 1st in age group. The awards are given out in the school cafeteria and it was then that I recalled that the last time I ran this race they took forever to give them out. Same thing this time only since I ran the 10k, I had to wait even longer. I don't know why they can't get it together, this race has run for several years. Anyway, they finally get to the 10k awards, and run out of first place medals. That didn't bother me so much as the delay.
Today the marathon training group was doing 20 miles. Since I ran a marathon last week and the race yesterday I knew I wasn't going to do 20, but wanted to run some. I ended up with 14 miles and was fading after about 10. But I was by myself so I wasn't slowing anyone down. I need this to be a fall back week, and I'll race an 8k next weekend. I probably won't race again until April after that.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Cowtown Marathon

I left yesterday for the drive to Ft. Worth. This is about a 180 mile trip from Oklahoma City. I was doing this marathon on the cheap. I was staying at Motel 6 for $40.00. Got to the hotel around 3, checked in, then headed downtown to the expo. It wasn't bad, it was in tents and there were a fair number of exhibits. I got my bag, bib, and shirts ( 1 cotton, 1 technical) then headed back to my hotel. Located a grocery store, and bought a sandwich. Ate, set out my clothes and relaxed for a while before retiring around 10. Around 1 I was awakened by the sound of "open the door or we're going to kick it in." I looked out and the police were at the room next door. Luckily Sergio opened the door. They were there for about 30 minutes before they took Sergio away. No more drama, and I went back to sleep. I got up around 5 and decided to walk about a block to a C-Store for coffee. Brrrr, cold and windy. About 35 degrees, and wind gusts to 35 mph. How should I dress? I decided to go with my original plan, short sleeve under and long over, and shorts. Gloves and while I didn't plan on wearing my jacket, I couldn't locate the bag drop, and it was 5 minutes to the start. Oh well, wear it then tie it around my waist when I warmed up. That worked, and I ended up needing it longer than I had anticipated. While it did warm up some, the wind keep the chill factor up. I had lined up behind the 4 hour pacers. While I didn't plan on following them, that was my only goal for this run. We started, and it took a couple of minutes to cross the start. When we were able to run, I started trying to hold 9 minute miles or less. This was a moderately hilly run, and I would let the pace follow the course. Slow down uphill, pick it up downhill. Things were going well until around mile 12 when my right knee started hurting, and my right calf got real tight like it was going to cramp up. This was about the same time we left the road and entered a park path that was pure concrete and I could feel it hurting the moment we hit it. I tried to run through it, but it hurt when I tried to hold pace, so I decided rather than injure myself, I'd just back off and take it on in at a slower pace. About this time I realized that I had Endurolytes, and hadn't been taking them. I took one every 10 minutes for 30 minutes, and then started feeling better and loosening up. I then started pulling down the pace again. While I knew I had about a 2 minute cushion in chip time over gun time I decided I wanted to break four on the clock, not just chip time. This meant that I had to drop my pace a bit and fortunately was able to do that. I was feeling good and picking off a lot of runners who by this time had hit the wall or just had to slow their pace. As I got nearer the finish line I began to know that I would reach my goal. As I approached the finish line, I could see it counting to four hours. I had about 20 seconds to beat the clock. About that time this guy starts trying to pass me and beat me to the finish line. All the incentive that I needed to sprint past him and beat the clock. Final stats, 3:59:51 Gun time, 3:57:54 Chip. This is a well run marathon, but I have no plans to run it again.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

What a difference a (3) day(s) makes

My last run before today was a crappy run. I was tired and just couldn't get into a groove. So I decided to take a few days off. That seems to have done the trick. I ran a nice little 6 mile run, and after two blah miles Reese got his groove back. Today was one of those days that sort of defines why we run. It felt good, and when I finished I had the runner's high for several hours.
Here is a link to some pictures from the Rocky Raccoon 100 mile run. After all the things I was dealing with, I didn't worry about the pics. But one of my friends who helped me succeed has posted these. Thanks Bill. RR Pics.