Saturday, May 31, 2008

Moon Pie

No moon pie this year, not even a training run. May go on my bike as a out and back from the house, after I build up some miles. Pumped up the tires on the road bike yesterday. Time to get out and get some miles in the saddle or was it TITS?

The Moon Pie is a fun race that I'm never really ever in decent enough shape to run to my potential. I've run it 2 or 3 times, done training runs on it about as many times, but usually on my bike. It's a great course with rolling hills and lots of country. But, the one thing that gets me every year is the heat. I'm just not a warm weather runner. I've run half marathons at a faster pace.

Did the Cardiac Center 5k route twice this morning before the race started. It was run on the old Pace Center course. Phil and I did the timing for the Murfreesboro Pacers. Eric M. won it in 18:21 on a sunny hot morning. That's what really sealed the decision on Moon Pie. I just can't get excited about the heat. Debating whether or not to start at 4:30 am tomorrow to escape the heat. Probably just sleep in a little bit and start at sun up.

May didn't really pan out as a very good training month. Only got 169 miles versus 208 miles for April. Took 5 days off for the upper calf strain. Really think it was more tendon than calf. Strange spot, never hurt in that area before. Tweaked the groin climbing the fence at the track on Thursday. Took Friday off, still a little sore. Uncomfortable but tolerable this morning on the run. Hope to get back up to around 60 miles per week and make another fast 5k attempt around the first or second week in July. Should have plenty of time to acclimate to the heat. Just need to stay uninjured.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Back to the track

Pet Peeves, locked tracks. What a pain in the ass. Four tracks in Murfreesboro and they're all locked up. Could drive 5 miles and then run another 3 miles as warmup to one track that has a gate a runner can squeeze through. Or do like I did this morning; run from the house, the long way to get in a 3 mile warmup at the track that's only a mile and a half from the house. Only downside is climbing the *&^%$ fence.

During the warmup this morning I decided that it was time to HTFU in my workouts. Jeez, that's why I'm back doing intervals this morning anyway. Thought I was being smart, chose the track instead of the road for its soft surface. Also, did some warmup exercises coach G. had us do last year at the Fleet Feet speed sessions. Don't know if it was climbing the fence or doing the leg swings, but somehow I tweaked my groin. Yep, I'm big sissy. Part of the warmup was some strides. Damn thing was very uncomfortable trying to accelerate for the strides. Decided to gut it out and do the 12 x 200 meter workout anyway. First several intervals were very uncomfortable, no pain. So, decided to run through it. Never did diminish, actually had to back down on the next to last interval, because it was becoming even more uncomfortable. Haven't looked at my splits, but first couple were a touch slow, got on target and actually went to fast on a few and just tried to nail the target on the last 3-4. Slow slog home. Ice and Ibuprofen, a runners best friend.

On my walk around the track this morning before I started a bird was just laying in the gravel next to the fence. So I thought anyway, it was a mama killdeer sitting on her nest. Don't know that you actually could call a pile of rocks a nest, she had 4 eggs.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

this blogging thing

My 100th post has come and gone. Didn't even realize it until yesterday. Knew I was getting close. This has actually been easier than I thought.

Check out this definition of a blog. Swiped it from Bad Ben's other blog.

Definition of "Blog" -
1. an acronym for Boring Loser Of Grand-design. 2. an abbreviation used by journalism drop-outs to give legitimacy to their shallow opinions, self-absorption, and amateur photography, which seem permanently stuck in the first draft.

My first batch of home brewed beer is a little green. I'll try again, but first I'm going to make sure all of the ingredients are fresh.

Easy 10 miles from the house to the Stones River Battlefield. Super slow. Rain the entire time. Ran in the freshly plowed field adjacent to the battlefield. I'd hoped to find some flint, arrowhead preferably or perhaps a mini-ball. Nada. Dirt was very wet and my shoes were mud covered in the 100+ yards of dirt I covered. About the only thing I saw in the mud were the deer tracks entering and exiting the field.

Freshly plowed fields or bulldozed work sites were always the best places to find arrowheads in my youth. Dylan found a couple of arrowheads up at the farm last summer. I still have a box of broken arrow head pieces that I've held onto for over 30 years. Below are some of the perfect to near perfect points I've found.

Center most point in the frame was given to my Grandmother, the spear point next to it was found by my brother, (who evidently forgot that he gave it to me) he can have it back.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

back to work

Long holiday weekends take a toll. Today was catch up at work. Slept in this morning and only had time for 4 miles and weights this morning before work.

Saturday we went fishing in the tail waters of Cordell Hull Dam. It was all of the guys. We went late in the afternoon and didn't really start catching any fish until it started cooling off a little bit. The boys used worms we dug up at the farm. No big fish, mostly blue gills, some pretty good sized though. Highlight of the trip, a bald eagle. Darrell spotted it. It flew towards us and then turned and landed in the trees on the cliffs overlooking the tail waters. That may be the second time I've ever seen a bald eagle in the wild.

Sunday we chopped up the downed cedar tree. Tim and I cut up some pieces to make a bench. The first attempt was pretty lame. I gave up and Tim took over. Between him and a little input from everyone else they finished up the bench. It turned out really nice. Lots of character. Took the boys back to the same place to go fishing, but waited until around 6:30 in the evening. Lots more fish this time. Darrell only caught one, but it was a decent size Sauger. We didn't get back until late. Darrell and I stayed up to clean all of the fish and everyone else went to bed. Took some benadryl for my allergies.

Monday morning it rained before we got up. Everyone stayed dry in the camper. I went for a 8 mile run down Little Creek road. It was just a 4 mile out and back. It was already hot and sunny when I started. Saw a 6 foot black racer and pileated woodpecker.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Day 2

Holiday weekend started yesterday at noon. I left work and went to Dylan's bike day at school. Plenty hot, the kids had fun. One teacher would only let her kids play on the playground, another had a water day with about 5-6 different water slides, pools, and sprinklers. Dylan's class and another class did the bikes and scooters. Saw 4 kids wipe out, lots of scraped knees, and few tears.

Did an easy 10 miler from the house today. Same route as yesterday. Last night's rain washed away the pollen from the bushes on the greenway. Plus, yesterday's heat and sun must have baked the flowers, they were about 50% brown with the rest white. Heading back I passed 2 runners I know and 2 steps later a young doe jumped out of the woods 5 feet in front of me. Startled her as much as me, she didn't know which way to go. She ran in front of me for about 20 yards, before she found a path to jump down.

Lots of people out on the greenway for that time of the morning, not even 7 am yet. One woman was sitting in a chair directly on the path smoking a cigarette! She was taking up a third of the trail. 10 years ago I would have had something smart ass, to say, mellowed over the years. Did tell Tommy when I ran into him on the other end of the greenway. He's the one were I got the Old Man. Both of us are 40 somethings'.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Holiday weekend

Memorial Day

The "Memorial" in Memorial Day has been ignored by too many of us who are beneficiaries of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice. Often we do not observe the day as it should be, a day where we actively remember our ancestors, our family members, our loved ones, our neighbors, and our friends who have given the ultimate sacrifice:

  1. by visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our fallen heroes.

  2. by visiting memorials.

  3. by flying the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon.

  4. by flying the 'POW/MIA Flag' as well (Section 1082 of the 1998 Defense Authorization Act).

  5. by participating in a "National Moment of Remembrance": at 3 p.m. to pause and think upon the true meaning of the day, and for Taps to be played.

  6. by renewing a pledge to aid the widows, widowers, and orphans of our falled dead, and to aid the disabled veterans.


PJ interviewed for a position in Murfreesboro, yesterday. She'll start on Wednesday. It's 4 miles from the house or around 4.5 via the greenway. Her commute before was about 30 minutes to Smyrna, now it'll only be 5 minutes. Same company, they just built a new office in the new Medical Center corridor. It would be cool if I could get a job in that area as well.

We'll head up to the farm on Saturday morning. No big plans, just chill out. Probably attempt to make a bench out of the cedar tree the wind blew over.

Really miss the running. My allergies have been giving me fits all week. Even PJ has allergy issues. Almost tempted to take some kind of over the counter antihistamine. Probably will if I don't get back running soon.

Headed out the door this morning for a easy 4 mile run. Got to the main road and decided I needed a real bathroom so went down to the greenway. Gate was locked and so was the bathroom. No problem, just go on down the greenway to the General Bragg trailhead. The greenway was a tunnel of white flowers. Don't know what kind of bushes, but the aroma was overpowering. Not sweet smelling like the honeysuckle and completely overpowered it. Quarter mile into this and my throat felt like it was swelling shut. Arrgh, Lisa I can feel your pain. Felt better coming back through on the return leg. Ended up with 7.95 miles. Dumb runner mistake 101, going to far coming back off a injury. Calf felt good, iced it as a precaution.(note to self, TP regardless of run length) Bathroom at Bragg was locked as well.

Check out this cool tunnel. Free State Trail Run.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Weak link

Dawned on me this morning, while doing my weights. One of the contributing factors to the calf strain on Saturday, kettle ball swings. I started doing a modified version of one of the crossfit workouts, a kettle ball swing, with a single dumbbell, one handed. That combined with my weak calves, rain not allowing the calf to stay warm (thursdays interval session), combined to make the calf fail.

Granted this calf strain was mild compared with the other two. Minimal inflammation, mostly gone by the third day. No visible bruising or discoloration. Tender to the touch, but released yesterday around noon. Able to do a wall stretch this morning. Sat in the hot tub last night and able to massage with very little discomfort. Need to get my pro stretch step back from speedy. Couple days of stretching and I should be back.

Joked with PJ, that I was going to pork up from not running. Actually, hit the snack machine really hard on Monday and Tuesday. Love the Honey Buns, Reeses cup, and powdered donuts. Mostly just a pity party, 'cause I hate to be hurt. Not warm enough to ride the bike, hate the trainer. Time to get back on track.

Monday, May 19, 2008

back to work

Picture of the lilac I planted 2 years ago. This is the first year it bloomed. Last year the late frost got it. I have doubts its even a lilac. It isn't like the bush we had in Georgia. That bush had white blooms and different flowers. On further web surfing, the bush we had in Georgia was a gardenia. Can't remember why I ended up with the lilac. Couldn't find a gardenia?

Got out the waterfall fountain for the front yard. It attracts the American Goldfinches nesting in the neighborhood. Also, saw a hummingbird at one of the feeders in the house behind ours. I'd really like to get a picture of either of those birds. The hummers are the coolest. Like little kamikaze pilots darting around the yard. They seem to make it a game on how close they can get to you.

Drove all over Tennessee looking at 4 wheelers, dirt bikes and mini-bikes. Ended up in McMinnville. Stopped at the trail head for the Barren Fork Greenway. It's off of Highway 55 heading back towards Morrison. That's the town where Mom grew up. It's really changed. It was raining lightly when I took this picture of Dylan. Rained hard until we got to the interstate.

Ended up getting a mini-bike. Dylan isn't quite big enough for the smaller dirt bikes and the 4 wheelers are a little to fast. This thing is governed to hold down the speed. He had a good time riding it around the yard.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Saturday, saturday......

Friday, finally put some new tires on the back of my car. Tires on the back only last around 20,000 miles. The ones on front will be replaced today, they've got close to 70,000 miles. Saw the billboards for Discount Tire. Shopped on line and called to make sure they had tires. Really clean store, lots of employees, friendly and customer service. No pressure sales tactics. Really do need new tires up front, they've just worn better than the rears. I've used NTB for the last 20 + years. Not really dissatisfied with them, just tried the other store. I'll go back to Discount, NTB works a skeleton crew. Wait time is way to long. Discount, 2 new tires in 15 minutes.

Strained calf

Met EB at the General Bragg trail head for a easy 10 miler. She's been recovering from a ham string injury. This was the first I've run with her quite awhile. We started out slow, first mile was a 8:51. We picked it up a little, to around a 8:00 pace going into the second mile. My calf was tight and wasn't loosening up. Headed up a little rise and it wasn't any better. Stopped to stretch it out, but it wouldn't extend. Started back running slowly and it wasn't getting any better. Cut the run short.

Damn hate being hurt. Weird strain this time, upper part of the calf. Thursday's tempo run, the calf was tight. Friday's recovery run it was fine. Don't know that I could have done anything different to avoid it. This will be the third time I've strained this calf. Other two times were a lot lower. Almost makes me think this may not be the calf, its in the middle at the very top, directly below the knee.

Rest of the day was the typical hustle around town. Bought a new dryer at HH Greg. Took Dylan to the skate board park in Symrna. PJ and I had stopped by the Murfreesboro Y so he could go to that skate park with his brother. But, they've closed it for remodeling. Smyrna's skate board park is much better anyway. Lots more ramps and other stuff to grind and jump from. Wish I'd have brought the camera.

Friday, May 16, 2008


Picked up a case of one liter bottles with lids and some priming sugar from All Seasons on Eighth Avenue in Nashville yesterday morning. Got the bottles with lids, so I wouldn't have to mess with bottle caps. Last night I bottled 7 liters worth of beer. The kit must must be mislabeled and contain a porter style beer or way out of date. 10 days till the second stage of the process is finished.

Got some Kashi Go Lean Crunch cereal. Don't like it as well as the Granola cereal I usually mix with my yogurt. Golf course this morning with Speedy for a recovery run. Saw a skunk family. Speedy saw them first, they were only about 10 feet away. Even with my headlamp shining on them I didn't spot them until I saw 2 of them moving. Babies or juveniles, about a third of the size of a normal skunk. Also saw some kind of hawk like bird. Flew around like a bat, but a little larger than a mourning dove. White markings under the wings, I'll see if I can't try and figure out what kind of bird.

Wanted to scan our old wedding pictures last night. The scanner we have is "out of cycle" or something. It's to old for them to write code for the drivers, so they'll offer a discount to buy the latest scanner. Damn computers are a pain in the ass. Planned obsolescence. Did the microsoft update thing on the desktop computer and it wouldn't even start up windows. Took me until 11:00 last night to get it back running again.

Tried to get some pictures of Lance, he wouldn't hold still for very long. Crappy camera didn't help. It doesn't take bad pictures, if the subject isn't moving. Just put some brand new lithium "photo" batteries in the camera and it's already showing low battery.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Tied to the whipping post

Lance woke me up 15 minutes before the alarm was supposed to go off. I rolled over and overslept until 4 am. No biggie looks like I missed most of the rain rolling through this morning. By the time I finish with my warm up the rest of the rain should be gone. Can't be near as much as yesterday.

Wrongo. Rain and more rain. Never ending rain. Only let up for around 800 meters in the cool down. Workout today was 12 x 200 meters at 41 seconds. Averaged 40.8, mission accomplished. Headed out the door, lubed up and expecting the rain to be done by the time I started the intervals. Wore shorts, coolmax t-shirt, arm warmers and gloves. When I get wet, I get cold. Finished the workout in my shorts and shoes. Ditched the t-shirt after the first set of 4 intervals. Arm warmers came off after the 2nd set of 4 intervals. Took the gloves off before I started. Total miles 8.5.

Ipod, shuffled through with some great tunes on the warm up and during the intervals. I was "tied to the whipping post" for most of the first 2 sets and went "down to juniors farm" for the 3rd and final set. The slow easy Merle type stuff didn't shuffle through until the cool down plod home in the rain. That must have been a sight, old guy with soaking wet shorts and shirtless with a heart rate monitor and a hat.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Still brewin'

Up at 3:30 for a recovery run on the golf course. Rain and lightning put a stop to that. Surfed the net looking at beer making supplies instead. The company that made the kit my sister in law gave me isn't even in business any more. It's similar to the Mr. Beer kit. Everything you need to make your own beer. Except bottles with the kit I've got. I'll buy some bottles and priming sugar and decide on the next step. The 5 gallon starter kits are about $60 plus a ingredient kit for around $50.

Found one beer supply store in Nashville and another in Murfreesboro. I'll go check them out in the next couple of days for some bottles and priming sugar.

Rain run

Rain never did let up and decided to go ahead and run. Only did 4 miles. Of course as I write this and eat my breakfast the rain has stopped. Pretty wicked looking clouds, though.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Home brew

PJ brought home a homebrew beer making kit from her sister on Saturday. Sunday afternoon I cooked up the wert and put it in the 10 liter container that came with the kit. The malt had expanded inside the can it was packaged, almost bursting. Doesn't appear the yeast is any good. The 2nd day of fermentation and I should have some bubbles coming up. I'll wait a couple more days and try to bottle what I've got and see if it turns out.

I've been wanting to try and home brew some beer for quite a long time. If this batch doesn't work, I'll buy a some more malt and try again.

Update, as of Tuesday morning lots of bubbles. Good deal. Still thought it would be lighter in color, malt was almost blackish brown. Looks very dark for an american lager. It'll be fun to see how this batch turns out.

FM2 paced me for a tempo workout this morning. Wanted 4 miles at tempo pace around a 6:40 mile. Did the first 3 miles in 6:37, 6:49 and 6:38. Heart rate was at 172 and I was spent. Took a minute break and did one more mile in 6:35. Glad to have FM2 pacing me, makes all the difference. I'd have stopped at 3 and not even considered doing 1 more mile. Plus, when I started slowing its nice to have someone pushing you back onto pace. Next week I'm going to try 2 x 2 miles at tempo, with a touch quicker pace. EB is on the road to recovery, between her and the fast guys I've got 3 different folks to help pull or push me through the tempo workouts.

Monday, May 12, 2008

recovered ?

Took today off. Six days in a row running, still not over yesterdays run. I need to go in to work early anyway. Started Sundays long run down two pounds from my normal running weight. Sunburn must have sucked all of the water out of me. Back is still red and sore.

Running log from Running2Win

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Run, run, run

Happy mothers day!

Weekends are always way to busy. Up at 3:30 am on Saturday in order to get a run in before setting up for the See Spot Run 5k. Ran the course twice, slowly. Great turnout for the race, over 290 registered, 237 finishers through the chute. (lots of dogs poop out coming back through the start area) This is a real fun race. I like running at MTSU, never have "officially" run a race on the course, always before the race starts or some other day. Lots of dogs, big and small. Still waiting for the file from the race director so I can match the times with the names and finish the results. Big time saver not entering the times manually, but still need to buy a bar code reader to eliminate entering the bib numbers manually.

Got home and started on the yard work. I weedeated, so Darrell could mow the back yard, it was a jungle. Electric bush trimmer/cutter got water in it from the shed and wouldn't work even after drying it out. Cut the bushes the old fashioned way with the manual hedge trimmers. Suprisingly my arms aren't sore today. Did manage to get big time sunburn on my back. Wore a cowboy hat so my head and face wouldn't get burned. PJ and Dylan were at her sisters yard sale.

Jumped in the shower and off to t-ball. Game didn't start until 4:00 pm. Seems like all of the games we had last year were early morning, nothing after noon. It's going to be tough next weekend, once its starts warming up. Those little kids will wilt in the heat. Dylan played great, got a couple of good hits. The other team was really sharp, good thing they didn't keep score.

Sunday I'd wanted to go to Spain hill and get in about 12-13 miles. Talked with speedy on Friday and he wanted to go out to Cedars of Lebanon. Never did hear from him. Guess I'll just run 12 or so from the house.

Swirling winds

Wiped out from my run this morning. Wanted 12 miles at 7:30 pace. Seems like every turn I took the wind was in my face. Mostly just steady, but gusts that would stand you up straight every so often. Never did really figure out which way the wind was blowing, primarily from the Southwest, but gusting from the North? Maybe that's why it was a little cooler this morning. Only 60 degrees when I headed out the door at 6:30 am. Even put on the arm warmers for the first 2.5 miles. Stopped at 9 miles to hack up a bug, I sucked into my windpipe. Almost coughed up a lung trying to get rid of it. Slogged it on home after that. Must be the sunburn and the dehydration from yesterday catching up with me.

Lots of mother days tributes.(from Lisa and Jill) I guess everyone has women in their lives that have touched them. For me, PJ, her mom, my mom and my grandma (granny) but I'm not much of a writer, I'll leave that to the others.

Friday, May 9, 2008


Started doing the blog thing in January and it's really becoming addicting. I spend a lot of time reading other blogs and following links to yet even more blogs. Very entertaining stuff. Haven't watched any television in quite some time.

Came back around to the SLUGS website this morning. The 50 mile trail run they put on has reached its limit. It filled faster than the big city marathons. Haven't seen BT in quite awhile, he's the one who suggested that run. He's hooked into the ultra scene, need to have him or puppymeat suggest a early fall 50 miler.

Recovery day today, 8 miles on the golf course.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Gray day

Overslept again this morning, second time this week. Lance woke me up at 2:52 am and I didn't wake up again until 4:30 am. Didn't even hear the alarm at 3:30. Missed meeting WH at the track, I'll just do my 12 x 200 meter repeats on the road.

Only got one picture from Dylan's party. (replaced the old photo on the left column) Batteries on the camera are almost dead. Damn camera. This set of batteries lasted alot longer than regular batteries. We'll need to get that Canon Powershot before the cruise. May try and get one of those countdown stickies to attach to the blog.

Checked out a youtube video of a crossfit workout with the kettlebell. That looks like it could be very beneficial to a runner. I may try it with dumb bells. Only found one gym in Nashville that does the workouts. Can't see driving to a gym to do the workouts, that's why I've got the dumb bells and bench in the garage.

Finally got out the door this morning at 6 am. Plenty warm and breezy. Rain didn't start until I'd finished my 6 miles. Did 11 x 200 meter repeats, averaging 40 seconds. Target was 41, but can't believe I miscounted the reps. I'll have to create a counter of some sort for my wrist, maybe a piece of leather with beads on it or something. Use to use rocks to count my loops when I did a 20 miler on the 2 mile path on the paved trail in Smyrna.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Happy Birthday Dylan !!

Seven years old today. We'll have the family over for pizza and cake tonight. Dylan and I picked out a cake at the grocery store last night after t-ball practice. Chocolate cake, chocolate frosting and chocolate ice cream. Not a fan of the chocolate, but love the cake and ice cream. Dylan has decided he's to old for t-ball. I'll have to agree, him and one other kid should really be on coach pitch baseball. He wants to quit, can't say as I blame him. Most of the kids are kindergartners and don't have a clue about baseball. It's fun to watch.

Getting bike fever. The speed queen brought her bike into work yesterday. Her leg still hurts, probably a stress fracture. Don't think I've ever seen such a small bike. Pretty cool how much more advanced the components are compared with my old Vitus. Boss still has the Serotta Hors Categorie for sale. That'd be a cool bike, don't think it fits me though. He's having a tough time selling it. It's a blast riding the bike, just takes so much more time versus running.

Supposed to meet speedy at the golf course for a recovery run. He'll be wearing his heart rate monitor, so we should stay around a 8:00 pace.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Speed, some days you've got it................

Think I only ended up with a couple of spots of poison ivy on my legs from Sundays trail run. Took yesterday off, the ankle was still a little sore and the legs were itchy from the poison ivy. Went to the grocery store last night for some beer and milk with calamine lotion all over my legs:)

The rest of Sunday we spent up at the farm. PJ, her mom and sister finished covering the other seat cushions for the camper. I weedeated down by the road and took the chainsaw and cut up a fallen tree. Also spread the rest of the gravel inside the barn. Couldn't get the chainsaw started at first. Brand new chainsaw, I took it out of the box. Of course everyone thought they could start it, no go. Took it apart and ends up the "safety switch" wasn't allowing it to get a spark. Disconnected the switch and got it to run. Problem now was it wouldn't shut off. Had to stall out the motor to shut it off.

Decided to go ahead and do a tempo run this morning. Lousy effort, more of a half hearted progression run. Only positive was four miles versus the three miles last week. Splits were pitiful, 6:53, 7:00, 6:52, 6:42. Target is 6:30-6:40. Only excuse I'll throw out is the benadryl from sunday. That's why I hate taking that stuff.

Ate my granola and yogurt this morning on the deck. Sunshine felt good and nice to hear the birds singing. Can't hardly even type this out this morning because, Lance, PJ's dog thinks he's a lap dog. Little rat has to be right in my lap.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Trails in TN

Sure wish we had more running trails in the Middle TN area. Hate that I missed the Wild Thang. Actually that trail is one of my least favorite in the area. The rocky section on the far end hurts my feet. If I had some real trail shoes that wouldn't matter. No use buying any real trail shoes, not enough trails to make it worthwhile. They do make a difference when the trail is slick or muddy. Rocky trails require a forefoot plate or more protection, especially for a toe runner like me.

The trails at Long Hunter State park and Cedars of Lebanon State park are the closest to the house. I really like the trails at Percy Warner Park, but the best one is the yellow trail for horses. Don't know why runners aren't allowed on that trail. In Texas runners and horse riders shared trails, as well as the mountain bikers. Four wheelers and motorcycle riders had separate trails. The Chattanooga area seems to be developing some new trails. I also found a link to the Cumberland Trail. That would make a good camping trip to check out some of the trails. Lots of trails in the Smokey Mountains. All of those would require an overnight stay.

Checked out the horse trail from the Walter Hill access at the Stones River and Hwy 231. Ended up running 4.5 miles of trail and 2.5 miles of black top back to where I started. The trail is not maintained, Percy Warner's yellow trail is a super highway in comparison. Most of the trail was single track and spots were so overgrown I could barely see the trail. Managed to sprain my right ankle a mile into the run. Slight swelling this evening, pretty tender and sore all day. Because the trail isn't maintained or marked very well, lots of side trails leading down to the river. It was cool sliding on my butt down the mud slopes on the creek crossing and then crawling on all fours back up the other side. Lots of mud and ankle deep water. Lots of poison ivey. Really felt good to wade into the river afterwards to wash all of the mud off.

At 4 miles I decided to turn around and head back. Found what I thought was the horse trail, instead of the single track deer trail I was running. It didn't last very long before it ended up on the road. Decided I'd had enough of the brush and undergrowth and ran back on the blacktop back to the car. It was actually a straighter shot. I didn't realize how much the river twists and turns until I looked at the GPS map download from the Garmin. Actually did use the Garmin to make sure I was going the right way to get back to the car. Decided it wasn't to bright to run the trail by myself. Had I really twisted my ankle as bad as last time, it would have been a hell of a hike back out.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Lightning and the Lascassas Loop

Heavy rain and lots of lightning this morning at 4:00 am when I got up to get a early start. Rain front coming through won't pass until probably 8 or 9 am. That would be great if I were running the Strolling Jim (one of these days) or the Wild Thang. The Wild Thang is a 9 mile trail run at Long Hunter State Park. I've done the race once, volunteered once. Ran the trail countless times. Cool thing about that race, instead of a t-shirt, you get a tree seedling. Seems some of the bigger races have started to give out technical shirts instead of the cotton, its about time. Sure don't need anymore cotton t-shirts.

Needed to be done this morning by 7 am so we could head up to the farm. Pops poured a concrete slab for his motorhome. He also got a couple loads of gravel to spread in the barn to keep the dust down. The rain will be done by the time we get to the farm, just means I won't get my run in today. I don't mind running in the rain, its the lightning I don't want to mess with.

More later..

Starting point of Lascassas and Spain hill loops

Ended up starting my run at 6:30 am, the front pushed through faster than I thought. Got rained on for the first 2 miles and last 2 miles. No biggie, just a light drizzle. Planned on doing 12 miles at 7:30 pace, but cut it short at 10.8 because of the late start. Ended up averaging 7:25 pace, right about marathon pace. Took the camera and stopped 6 times to take pictures. Good thing I was by myself. Lots of buzzards out and saw one American Goldfinch.

first rise on the Lascassas loop

coyote corner looking towards the bridge

coyote corner looking across the field by the creek

coyote corner looking back up the hill

spain hill across the field

looking back down the last hill on the Lascassas loop

To wet for Dylan's ball game, it was canceled. Rushed for nothing on my run, to wet to go to the farm, we'll go tomorrow instead. Rest of today we'll shop for camping stuff for the farm, plus do some birthday shopping for Dylan. He'll be seven.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Longer days

Slow recovery on the golf course this morning. Dawn breaking at around 5:15. I cut the run short because the grounds keepers were already pulling out the tractors on the second loop. 7.1 miles in a hour plus is plenty for a recovery run. It was good practice for the ultra shuffle. It's about the same pace we started out on the first Fat Ass 50k. That would be about the average pace were someone to walk the ups and run the flats and downs at Percy Warner Park. Hmmmmmm. Not thinking about the entire distance, but maybe 50 miles or 50k.

Saw a possum on the first loop of the golf course this morning. A single goose was honking the first time I went by the pond and still going on the second lap. Passed overhead honking within 10 feet of me. Usually don't see a Canadian goose by itself, maybe that's why it was making so much racket. It did scare off the Great Blue Heron that's usually hanging around the pond.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Pet peeves

Yes, I'm an old curmudgeon. I've got lot's of things that tick me off. I try not to be to negative and keep them to myself, but sometimes the pet peeves do come out. Today's was the bike rider who didn't let me know he was passing on my left. It doesn't take much, a simple "on your left". I try to do the same when I'm on my bike, because I know it scares the crap out of people when you're suddenly on their shoulder. I even do the same when I'm running when someone doesn't hear me approaching from behind.

This mornings speed went well. 12 x 200 meters at R pace with a 200 meter recovery. I averaged 41's which is right where the coach, aka speedy told me I should be running them according to Jack Daniels. This is 4 levels above where I had been doing the speed workouts. I was skeptical at first, but it felt right. Didn't use the Garmin at all except as a tachometer and odometer, distance and heart rate. Used the old Timex Ironman watch to record the splits. That's what I'll do on race day. I wore the Timex on the left arm where I usually wear the Garmin. The Garmin was on the right arm and I sure could tell it was there. Felt heavy and clunky. I don't really notice it on my left arm. Strange.

CM1/2M photo's