Monday, June 30, 2008

back to jack

Going back to the Jack Daniels program for another sub 19:00 5k attempt on August 9th at the Smyrna Parks 5K Run, High School Challenge & Bill Nash Competitive Mile. I've been doing 3 quality workouts a week for the last 6 weeks. The base is in place, need some sharpening and endurance.

Easy 4.8 mile recovery run on the golf course this morning, followed by weights. Decided to try something a little different. Perhaps 8 miles of recovery is to much, according to Speedy and what I've read in the past, anything over 45 minutes isn't really recovery. So, that's what I did this morning 45 minutes easy. Doesn't help my mileage, but I think I'll do a double tomorrow. Same workout in the morning 45 minutes easy on the golf course. Quality workout in the evening in the heat will be whatever tempo stuff is on the Daniel's schedule. Not only a double, but also quality and heat acclimation all in one.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

bird feeder

It's been a real long time since I've put out a bird feeder. Bought a cheap tube feeder to try and attract the gold finches. Located it right off the back deck. Birds had already found it by this morning. A male cardinal was feeding when I got back from my morning run.

Yesterday's run was a easy 10 miler from the house. Today was supposed to be a marathon pace run for 14 miles. Hilly loop course up Wilson Hill. Ran with the fast boys. FM2 raced yesterday, first master, 6th overall. Speedy did a 3 mile tempo. This was a recovery run for them. Thunderstorm earlier in the morning and again right before I left the house. We started at 5 am. It looked like we'd have about a hour before the rain would hit again. Not quite, it poured going up Wilson hill, but only lasted for a few miles. Just enough rain to make the shoes weigh about 10 pounds each. I started feeling the pace around 10 miles in and separated from the speedsters. Kept them in sight, but struggled to maintain. They stopped with about a mile and a half to go, and I was able to regroup and hang till the end. Averaged 7:29 pace at a average heart rate of 150. Right where I wanted to be. Little tough at the end.

Friday, June 27, 2008


Ok, usually I'm a patient person. It takes alot to get me excited. But, we're 3 months into waiting to have a merger be finalized and my head is about to explode. One great thing about a recovery run, is the ability to think things out. That's what I did this morning. 8 miles nice and slow on the golf course. Just me and my Ipod. I've been down the merger, fired, terminated, right sized, or whatever else kind of PC bullshit you want to call it, road many times.

California 'tude.
This is what really got me started this week. The whole, "you didn't tell me that hot coffee, was hot", I'm going to sue you mentality. Our building is a giant oval with loading docks on the interior for each of the different business's. Part of my hiring spiel to all new hires is the fact that we have a loading dock, yes parking places are adjacent to said dock. But, we have trucks come in maybe twice a month and should you chose to park in those spots you may be asked to move your vehicle. Pretty certain I've sent at least one company wide email with the same message after the last time someone gave me attitude. We've been at this location a year and a half. Yet, I still get attitude when asking to have someone move their vehicle. Damn near lost my cool. Think I did tell this individual to leave their car, but don't be surprised if it gets backed over by an 18 wheeler.

Dad. Look in the mirror and it's him looking back. Geez, and I'm becoming the same SOB.

Lawyers. I've already vented once to a coworker about them. Now in the eleventh hour I've got a laundry list of to do's from the lawyers.

Big companies. Fortunately I delegated most of the above to a coworker. She got to see first hand the joy of dealing with large companies. One in particular was Google. Try and find someone to talk on the telephone and then the right person or department. Very frustrating. I had the same thing with a company in Georgia. Of course this can also work to your favor if your work in one of these giant companies. Most jobs are very specific. IE: payroll for the South East quadrant of Texas. So, very easy for the, "that's not my job". That's one thing I don't think most people realize in a merger. When 5 companies come under one roof, only one accounting department is needed. Someone has gotta go. Who's it gonna be?

Never forget one of my coworkers calling me up after he was terminated. He couldn't believe they didn't give him any warning. Come on now. You can't be so naive to think your position is safe, no matter what. I've lost positions to someone's friend. Missed promotions because the ratio's weren't right. Fired because I pissed off the wrong person. But, I still like the fact that Tennessee is a right to work state. I can fire you today because you wore purple socks to work, or just because I don't like you. It burns my ass that someone thinks they should be paid the same to sweep floors as to do some highly technical position. That's why I went back to college so I wouldn't have to sweep floors.

I could go on and on but, no one likes to listen to this shit..............

Thursday, June 26, 2008

shorter recovery

The fast boys were talking about one of the workouts they were going to try; 200 meter repeats with only 20 seconds recovery. Got me to thinking maybe my recovery is to long. The target pace when I started was 41 seconds for 12 repeats and 200 meters of recovery. I have whittled that down to around 38 seconds after 4 weeks of work. This morning I cut my recovery in half, only 100 meters of recovery. Averaged 41 seconds for the repeats and the recovery was quick, about 36-40 seconds to cover the 100 meters, before it was go time again. Instead of doing 12 repeats, I only did 10. May up it to 12 repeats next week. 70 degrees actually felt cool after doing a workout in the 90's. Tough workout, but really the shorter recovery wasn't that bad.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

PWP rocks

Sport Tracks elevation map of Percy Warner Parks 11.2, first 5 miles are Belle Meade Boulevard

Elevation map from Garmin Training Center

Percy Warner Park or more specifically the 11.2 main road within the park. A scheduled off day, so time to jump on the bike. Left work at 4:30 pm to try and start by 5 pm. Sunny when I left the office but the rain clouds were forming. Took PJ's van so I could load the bike without having to remove my wheels. Unloaded and got going as quick as I could because the rain was heading in, I could hear the thunder as I headed away from PWP and down Belle Meade Blvd. Lots of bikes already out on the road, as well as a few runners. I always hated running on the boulevard, especially after running in PWP, to try and add some miles. Seems the little rises are mountainous on tired legs. Reminded of that again on the return towards PWP. About a mile from the Stone Gates at PWP the rain started, typical Tennessee thunderstorm. The rain within the park didn't seem as heavy, it was absorbed by the trees. I headed on into the park and started the first climb. Not as bad as I thought it would be. Of course I was out of the saddle most of the way up. Took it easy on the first descent. I've never ridden my bike in the rain and didn't want to crash. The rain stopped by the time I reached the top of 3 mile hill and the sun came back out. Only saw 2 others on bikes and they both passed me just after I crested 3 mile hill. Never saw either of them again, but then again I took the descents very slowly. Big chicken because of the wet roads. This was the first time I've ever ridden a bike on the 11.2. I tried to anticipate the climbs and descents but they came and went quicker on the bike. Really even when I run the park I get deceived on where I am. Maybe it's because when I run, I change directions especially when we double. When I got around to the Steeplechase the steam was really rising off the road and the sun was blasting. Couldn't really see much sunlight on rest of the road. That's one of the things that is so cool about this route. The trees shade most of the road for the entire route, so even in the heat of the summer, its probably 10 degrees cooler in the park. 9 mile hill did make my quads scream at me, any thoughts of doing another loop were quickly silenced going up that little hill. Still forget that it keeps on coming until just past the 10 mile mark. Went up the Luke Lea overlook. I'd only been up there on other time, but that was during the winter solstice. Able to see downtown Nashville, though it was a little hazy. Only wildlife was a couple of turkeys, a goldfinch and a indigo bunting. All of them were out in the open on the Steeplechase side. Only saw a few other runners on the road, few on the trails. Wore the Garmin in bike mode, so the only thing I got was elevation and total distance. Funny how Garmin and Sports tracks both have different takes on the elevation.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

hot time in the summer

First day of my heat acclimation workouts. Ideally, 2-3 workouts a week need to be done in the heat on a weekly basis to get use to the heat and humidity. I'll have to do with once a week. All of my workouts are usually done as the sun is coming up. Even on the weekend when I could train in the heat, I prefer to start early and avoid the sun and heat.

Left work at 4:00 pm to make it back to the 'boro for a start around 5 pm. Still 91 degrees when I started my 2 mile warmup. Last week I got 3 miles of tempo, in the morning. This workout was 2 x 2 miles around 6:50 or so. First repeat was a 6:46 and 6:36, the second came in at 6:45 and 6:38. Better than I'd hoped with the heat. I took 1:30 recovery between the repeats. I did this on the loop at the Stones River Battlefield. It works great, because its a road with little traffic, one way, shaded and only slight rises. Plus someone has marked quarter mile marks:)

Even better considering I'm pretty certain I broke my big toe yesterday at work. Dropped a desk directly onto the big toe and adjoining toe. Lots of choice words, thought I'd cut it off, but no blood. Only swelling and a little bruising. Throbbed all day long today. Didn't feel to bad during the run, but back throbbing now. Same toe I broke April 2007.

Monday, June 23, 2008

no energy

Double yesterday must have taken more out of me than I thought. Recovery run on the golf course was only 7 miles. Took almost 4 miles to loosen up and the legs didn't have any turn over. Weights when I got home.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

design on a dime

PJ watches all of those designing shows on TV. Guess we've been lucky and haven't changed anything in quite awhile. But, come Sunday morning it was time for a change. Took almost everything out of the bonus room and everything from the living room back up to the bonus room. Idea was to have the living room, more of a sitting room, IE: no tv. Setup now looks great, just took all day to do it. Of course the biggest challenge in all of the moving of furninture is the stairs. The big screen tv in the bonus room has been out of adjustment for over a year. We put a hole in the wall carrying it up to the bonus room. My idea to get it back downstairs was to cut it up in to several pieces, it only weighs about a 1,000 pounds. Kept it all in one piece, but not without lots of tense moments. At one point I saw the headline in the paper flash before my eyes, "Murfreesboro man dies after being crushed by big screen tv". Finished all of the moving without any casualties. PJ took Dylan over to her sisters for a swim and I went for a bike ride.

Twice a days.
Never have done a twice a day. (run 2 times in one day, or in this case, run in the morning then bike later that day)I ran with the fast boys at Spain hill at 5 am this morning. I wanted to run 13 miles at a average 7:30 pace, which is almost marathon pace. We averaged 7:23, felt good. Hills kicked my ass. Heat and hills take it right out of me. I jumped on the bike around 4:00 pm or so. Almost the heat of the day. Didn't have much left, the quads were burning, only managed 17 mph average for the 16.5 mile ride. Just went from the house out to Stones River Battlefield for a couple of laps. Cold beer afterwards sure tasted good.

Went over to the neighbors house after supper. The boys started playing the boxing game on the Wii. We ended up playing some baseball, bowling and golf. Fun stuff. The designers of that gaming system did their homework. Great graphics, yet kinda quirky players. Lots of action, and you physically have to get up and move around to play. The baseball tired me out. Appeals to the younger kids and the adults. Teens probably not so much because its not your typical shoot 'em up video game or crash and burn fest. PJ even liked it. She didn't play any, to busy playing with the baby.

Saturday, June 21, 2008


Different side of Moon Pie today. I worked the 5 mile split. Got into Bell Buckle around 5 am. I wanted to get a 10 mile run in before the race started. Paul loaned me his truck to carry the mats, clock and some cones out to the 5 mile split. I was to early so the other volunteer hadn't made it yet. Set up all of the stuff and headed out for a run at 6:08 am. Only able to get in 5.15 mile before 6:50. I thought I'd be able to run until the first runners showed up (guessing 7:25), but had to start the clock and mats at gun time. Crappy cell phone didn't work, so I started everything at 7 am. Nick had tried to call me, I could hear him but he couldn't hear me.

Larry got dropped off to help. He's a character, everyone in Franklin knew him, 70 years old, but you wouldn't know it. One thing about running it seems to slow the aging process. He was the race director at the Frankling Classic the year the leaders took a wrong turn. Kid in a pickup working, volunteer from the Bell Buckle fire department, comes by around 16 minutes into the race. He had a stopwatch and had actual gun time, so we were able to synch the clock. When the lead vehicle came by, we were almost tick to tick in synch.

Told runners at least three of the great lies of any race: your almost done, that's the last hill and you look great. Plus, you've got 2 miles of downhill, yet there's a small rise right in front of them. (really was at least 2 miles probably 3 before you hit the first roller going back into town) Love that course, even "the hill". Don't know if it was the people living at the crest of the hill, think so. But, they had water at the top. First year for that.

Must have rained earlier in the morning, very humid. Rain held off the entire time. Sunny for the first hour or so, then clouds rolled in, not for very long. The back of the pack got a lot of sun. Runners run the gamut, big, short, tall, large, old, young (actually only 2 kids, 10 or so maybe)and wear everything from gloves, sweatpants, racing flats in the back of the pack, and even a moon pie hat.

Didn't hang around long after the race. Dylan had his last t-ball game of the season. Cupcakes and trophies for everyone afterwards. Storm moved in on the way home. Pretty hard rain shower with lots of quarter inch size hail. No wind, strange intense little thunderstorm. Lazy rest of the day.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Bird pics

Been trying to figure out how to get some decent bird pictures with the Nikon and the 200 mm lens. Without a multiplier or a 400 mm lens, I'll need to be with 10 feet or so to get a decent shot. That rules out blue birds, the American Gold Finch, and the Indigo Bunting. But, I think a could get some shots of either of the geese families. Saw them this morning heading towards the river. Perhaps, that's where they're nesting.

The American Goldfinch is using the fountain in the front yard, perhaps with a blind I could get a shot. I've seen him twice in the last 2 days. Each time was in the evening. He would perch in a tree in the yard and then swoop down, get a drink and be gone. To get a picture in the wild would require a blind overlooking some thistle. But, that would require a 400 mm lens or longer.

Easy 8 mile recovery run on the golf course this morning. Did my typical weight routine afterwards.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

cool morning

This morning was cool again. One weather site said 57 degrees, the other 60 and my thermometer on the deck 59. Great running weather and even better for speed work. Looks like this weather will hold for Moon Pie on Saturday. Should be some PR's set. This year I'll have a different perspective, I'm going to be at the 5 mile mat. Guess the only reason for a volunteer at that spot is to make sure no one steals the mat? Dallas has always been at that spot when I run the race. This year we'll have 2 volunteers.

Speedwork this morning was 12 x 200 meters with 200 meter recovery. Somehow I managed to run a 4 mile warmup instead of 3 miles. Oops. New target is 39 seconds per interval. I averaged 38.75 seconds. Seems like the short distance speed is coming around, but still a long way to go to build up the endurance side.

Looked around this morning for my MS Excel spreadsheet with paces and splits, but couldn't find it. Did find my marathon checklist. Mr. Anal.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Bike geek

Slept in this morning, until 4 am. Off day from running. I'm back on my normal schedule now, off every Wednesday. I've run 9 days straight. Chilly morning 60 degrees, but sunny. Had to wear the arm warmers, plus a singlet under the bike jersey. Laid back bike ride to Siegel HS road to repaint the 100 meter dots on the road. Then I rode out to Stones River Battlefield to repaint the quarter mile marks. Saw 2 turkey hens with babies. Not very protective of their babies compared to the geese. I got with 2 feet of them, before I even saw them. The babies are very well camouflaged. At least 3-4 babies per hen, maybe more, hard to see in the tall grass. On the other side of the loop were some Indigo Buntings swooping down among the freshly plowed field. Similar flight pattern to a blue bird, but don't seem to perch or stay in one place very long.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

I wear my persimmon colored sunglasses at night

Persimmon colored lens were delivered on Saturday. Monday's recovery run on the golf course was the first run with them. Wore them again this morning. Just what I needed. I've been watching these on ebay for a couple of months. I can buy direct from Oakley for $50 and free shipping. I got these for $37 delivered. This is the second lens I've bought for my M frame sunglasses. The first were a clear lens. I bought them 2 - 3 years ago when I started riding my bike before the sun came up. Eye protection on the bike is essential. I paid retail that time, $50 plus tax at the mall. I got the M frame from a running buddy in Texas around 1999 or so. Best pair of sunglasses for the money. I paid $75, which was discounted because he was a fireman. I've been looking for just a frame and they still go for around $40, plus shipping.

The persimmon colored lens is perfect for gray days or before sunrise. Most of my runs are about an hour before sunrise. These lens work great in the dark and early morning before the sun gets to far up. The glasses keep the dust, bugs and pollen out of my eyes. Pollen isn't really an issue anymore, at least until the ragweed starts to bloom. Dust and bugs are always a problem. The greenway seems to attract a lot of gnats and other flying bugs. The roadway from my house to the greenway is frequented by large trucks and they really kick up the dust.

I'm a bird lover, no secret. But, a couple of birds I have no use for, are starlings and black birds. Figured out this morning they're roosting or nesting across the street. Noisy birds, they seem to be driving away all of the other birds. They're almost like the obnoxious neighbor, loud and pesky.

Nice and cool this morning. Even a little breeze, wore a coolmax tshirt, a little to chilly for a singlet. Tempo session finally clicked this morning. 3 miles, 6:48, 6:48 and 6:42. 3 mile warm up and 3 mile cooldown.

Monday, June 16, 2008

it's monday

Magnolia blossom after the petals drop

Time to recover from the weekend. Saturday we spent most of the day at the Outlets Limited Mall in Lebanon. Long day, I hate shopping. Not a single store of interest for me. Dylan and I went one way and PJ and Darrell went the other.

Later, Saturday afternoon, I took the boys, Dylan and his cousin to the skate board park in Lavergne. Dylan and the older kids did most of the riding. Lots of kids just hanging out. 'Course a few of them were smoking, youngest probably a 12 or so year old girl.

Sunday PJ mowed the grass while I weedeated. She planted some flowers and I trimmed all of the shrubs again. Lots of rain and they all needed trimmed again, except for the evergreens. Got the electric chainsaw out and trimmed the lower branches off all of the trees. First time I'd done that at this house. I'll need to chop down the last 3 Bradford Pear trees this winter. I cut down 2 of them last winter. Finally able to dig up the stumps from them earlier in the week. The only tree that didn't get trimmed was the Magnolia. It's branches are within 3-4 feet of the ground, but it makes it easier to climb. Lots of large magnolia's in Georgia that Darrell was able to climb when he was younger because of the low branches.

I must have put on to much round up last fall. The side of the house by the air conditioner had a patch of purple and red bee balm. I sprayed on the purple side, but that's the only color that bloomed this year, but it's spread over to where the red had been the last 2 years. Doesn't make sense, unless when I cut the seeds off and scattered them with only the purple and not any red? The hummingbirds like the red.

Did fathers day at PJ's sisters. The boys swam, Tim soaked up the sun and Bob and I smoked a cigar. Lazy day.

Sundays run was an easy 10 miles from the house to Stones River Battlefield and back. Left the house at 7 am and it was pretty toasty in the sun on the last 2 miles home. Monday's run was a 8.1 mile recovery run on the golf course followed by weights at home.

Saturday, June 14, 2008


Went to Kirkenburts for dinner last night, after we'd dropped Dylan off at a birthday party. Small restaurant in a strip mall on the south side of town. Glad we ruled out living on that side of town, way to much traffic. Pretty decent pulled pork sandwich. PJ had the catfish it was good. Darrell had a clam basket, looked like they were cooked to long. Fries were good, crisp and not greasy. Big thing here was the "40", as in 40 ounce bottle of beer. Little to much for the driver (me). I had a Corona, because the waitress never could tell me what kind of beer they had available.

Started surfing the web last night and this morning looking for info on the Nikon D1 and D1H cameras. Found a users manual and a review. I'm borrowing these from work, as well as a Nikkor 80-200 mm lens and a Sigma 24-70 mm lens. This camera is heavy and built like a tank. The last 2 photographers at the paper have used Canon's. This equipment has been sitting around for 3 or 4 years. Charged up the batteries and took a couple of shots with both. They work, but the telephoto lens doesn't autofocus anymore. Not worth getting fixed.

I bought a Rokkor 200 mm f2.8 lens for my Minolta XD-11, many, many years ago. I used it with a 2x extender. Bought a 500 mm mirror lens f8 about 10 years. Didn't like that lens at all, sold it after a month. I'd really like to have a 400 mm lens, but they are pretty expensive. That's one of the big reasons I never made the jump to digital. A decent digital camera and 400 mm lens would be around $2,500. I did wait to long to sell my old manual focus camera. 10 years ago I probably could sold it for about what I paid new, now I'd be lucky to get .25 on the dollar.

Up at 3:30 am to get a early start, but it was raining. Waited to start my run until almost 6 am. Did the Lascassas loop, 11 miles at approximate marathon pace, 7:30 miles. Able to do the first 9 miles rather easily, started tiring towards the end and picked up the pace for miles 10 and 11 which were 7:11 and 6:57. Mile and a half cooldown. Warmer than last weekend but overcast and a few sprinkles of rain.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Circle of life

Attached picture of what a lawn mower does to a dollar bill. Good reality check for why kids shouldn't be allowed to ride with anyone on a lawnmower or tractor.

Easy 8 mile recovery run on the golf course this morning. Saw a fox on its way across the grass running towards the river. Perhaps it's been snacking on the goslings. When I went by the pond the 2 geese families were together and were down one gosling.

Reverend Horton Heat and his song about the six foot woman (Big Little Baby) came thru on the playlist this morning. Glad Billy turned me on to him. Brian Setzer and the Stray Cats are pretty similiar yet vastly different types of music. Both of those bands would be great to see live. My live music days are over. Speed Queen said this will be her last Bonnaroo, she's getting to old. (twentysomething thinks she's old) I'd go see Metallica.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Shazam, 35

Heart rate data

Great interval session this morning. Didn't get out the door until 4:40 am. Took awhile to read Davy Crockett's 50 mile race report. How about running in snow in June and we think its hot. Took some time to warm up and get the calves loose this morning. Did an easy 3 miles with stride pickups in the last mile to make sure the calves were warm and ready to go. Need to repaint my 100 meter dots on the road in front of the high school, they're pretty badly faded.

Plan was 12 x 200 meters at :41 with 200 meter recovery. Felt strong throughout. On repeat number 5, I was running across the road from another runner chugging along at around 8:30 pace. Caught up with Warren H. on repeat 7 and took an extra minute recovery talking with him. He's going to the track every day, goal 18:00 5k in August. I'll see if I can keep him in sight. He and I have been pretty evenly matched whenever we race, he's usually just ahead of me. Don't know what got into me, maybe it was the extra recovery, but I blasted a :35 on repeat number 8 as I ran by him on his recovery run back towards the house. Of course, as soon as I hit my 200 meter mark and started my recovery he went right back by.

Calculated heart rate (178 bpm) may be pretty accurate? I hit 178 bpm and 181 bpm on today's workout, usually only get as high as 173 bpm. For some reason I was under the impression my calculated heart rate was 174 bpm. Lots of different tables and factors.

1. :41
2. :40
3. :40
4. :41
5. :40
6. :39
7. :40
8. :35
9. :39
10. :39
11. :39
12. :40

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

psuedo brick ?

What do you call a run followed by a bike ride? Surprised I couldn't find the answer when I googled it. A brick is a training term of triathletes for a bike ride followed by a run. I've done it once and my legs felt like jello for the first quarter mile or so. This morning I went for a easy 4 mile run at 4:30 am. By the time I got back to the house it was light enough to ride my bike. Should have pumped up my tires and laid out my bike gear like a real transition, this T1 was 10+ minutes.

This morning I experimented with riding without gloves. I don't know if the hoods were damp because of the moisture in the air or my sweaty hands, but I don't like to have a slippery grip on the bars. One of the reasons for wearing gloves beside the grip factor is comfort, supposedly they absorb some of the road buzz. Don't know about that, maybe on a longer ride. Another big reason is precautionary, should you go down, they save your palms from the pavement.

I love summer time, but it means the greenway is crowded. I only ride 2 miles worth, out and back. MUP's (multi use path)as they're called on the bike forums are one of the reasons for moving back to the particular neighborhood where we live. I avoid riding much on them with the road bike, to many walkers, runners, roller bladers and other bikers. Everyone seems oblivious to the others. Walkers walk 4 or 5 abreast taking up the entire path. Bikers go to fast. Dog walkers let their dogs leash block the entire path. I'm guilty as well. I crashed head on into a women a couple of years ago, because I was going to fast into a 120 degree turn.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

tempo attempt

Made another stab at a tempo workout this morning. Plan was 3 miles at 6:45'ish. 78 degrees at 4:45 am when I headed out the door. Nice little rain shower for a mile and a half of my 3 mile warmup. First mile felt easy, 6:26, next mile was a struggle and finished it in 6:34. To quick for 3 miles of tempo and it felt like a 5k anyway. Took a mile break and then did another 6:27 mile and then a cool down back to the house to get 8.1 miles.

This workout was an improvement over last week. Still need to be able to string together 3 miles at 6:45 or so pace. Easier when someone is pulling or pushing me. Hopefully EB will be back in another week or so. I'd really like to start doing the tempo workouts in the evening to acclimate to the heat.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Geese and PF

Saw the goose family again this morning, except 4 babies? On around the other side of the pond another goose family with the single baby. Never realized there were two families with nests. According to my bird book, they should have 7-8 goslings. Guess the turtles got the rest? Saw a giant grass carp in the pond as well. One thing I didn't realize about geese was the amount of elimination, 28 times a day! And I thought runners had a problem. I know I've got a story about poop, a country road, 3 runners, a county sheriff and an escaped prisoner. Jill had one the other day, and a great one is Dave's.

Recovery run on the golf course, 8 miles real slow.

Plantar Fasciitis. I've had this at least 2-3 times. Usually something aggravates the bottom of my foot. Once it was climbing up and down a ladder with soft sole running shoes. Another time it was wearing dress shoes and walking downtown. Yet another time, was walking to far/long in Crocs. Each time recovery is 3-6 weeks. Quickest recovery is wall stretches, massaging the bottom of the foot and complete rest from running. This is what the doctor prescribed last time I had PF issues. I've used the Strassburg sock at night, when it starts to become noticeable and take a couple of days off without getting a full blown case. Some runners are able to run through it, even running a marathon, not me.

Forgot one preventive measure for the PF, don't go bare foot. I have a pair of crocs beside the bed and never walk on my bare feet.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Gone country

Packed up the car right after work on Friday and headed to the farm. We got there about 30 minutes before the sun went down.

Saturday morning I got up at 3:30 am to get my run in, started at 4:30 am. I wanted to do 10 miles at a 7:30 pace. After 4 miles my heart rate started really creeping up to almost tempo pace. Looking at the elevation map, I can see why. I had been climbing slowly the whole way. At 5 miles I hit the top of one hill and decided to just go down the other side for a mile to make an even 12 miles. (out and back) The return was fast, 7:15's mostly. Didn't pay much attention to the heart rate, just went comfortably hard, marathon pace. Great run, probably 60 degrees to start and only 64 degrees when I finished.

When I got back everyone was ready to go fishing. We went back below Cordell Hull dam. Didn't catch much and threw them all back. Stopped at the overlook on the way back. Pretty nice, the boys enjoyed it, wished I'd brought the camera. Left it in the van. I only took a couple of pictures at the farm on this trip. Saw some blooms on some cactus which I liked and took a picture of them and looking back up the hill at the barn.

The girls worked on the trailer. Made some curtains. Painted. It's starting to look pretty good.

Sunday we went back out to the lake so the boys could go swimming. I took the kayak and paddled around as well. Dylan got a lot of sun on his face, even though we put sunscreen on all of the kids. I'd have thought Ryan would have gotten sunburned he had the fairest skin. Bob and I enjoyed a good cigar while the boys swam. Everyone was worn out by the time would got home.

Lots of birds and wildlife out on this trip. The turkeys were roosting behind the barn and would fly down to the spring. Hummingbirds were at the feeders. Saw an indigo bunting a couple of times. Need to get my bird book out and figure out what bird built a nest in the hollowed out fence post. Saw the deer coming up the hill this morning while I was drinking my coffee. The blue bird seems to like the open field and the telephone wires.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Running injuries

Another stress fracture victim, Lisa. It sucks. Been there. I took off 10 weeks versus the doctor recommended 12 weeks. That was very early in my running years, 1996. Probably could have come back a little earlier. I've figured out over the years that most doctors are very conservative on the rest/recovery time frame. Everyone heals differently, plus the body adapts pretty well. I know you can run with a broken toe, (CMM in 2007), but I bet a doctor wouldn't suggest it or even condone it.

Causes. Chronic or traumatic. The only ones you can really actively work to avoid would be chronic injuries, usually a result of overuse. Everyone has heard what not to do; don't ramp up your mileage to quickly, don't do hard workouts back to back, don't push hard when you should be recovering, don't run in worn out shoes, don't run through pain and on and on. Traumatic injuries on the other hand are unavoidable for the most part. Those happen as the result of another force, such as stepping in a hole, tripping on the sidewalk or curb. Unfortunately for a clutz like me, these are a lot of my injuries. Running strictly on a nice smooth surface would minimize the risk, but jeez, I stepped in a hole at a mile and a half into the CMM and broke my 5th metatarsal and severely sprained my ankle. Nothing is certain.

Shoes. Even if you are a cheapskate like me and buy your shoes online, go to the local running store every once and awhile to get fitted. Wearing the proper shoe for your running style is probably one of the most important things you need to do. Shoes typically last for around 300 miles. I get considerably more mileage. The indicator to me that it's time to replace the shoes is when my shins start getting sore.

Surfaces. Soft surfaces give your feet and legs a break from the pounding of the pavement. Part of my plan to stay injury free is to run twice a week on the golf course. Trails are another good option. The worst surface to run on is concrete or sidewalks. I noticed several years ago one of the ultra runners would always run on the dirt/gravel/grass that was beside the surface we were running whether it was concrete or asphalt. Thought is was strange at the time, but find myself doing it as well on some of my long runs.

Stretching/Strengthening. Some will say you shouldn't stretch, do what works for you. I stretch before and after running. Most of my injuries are a result of tight calves. It's the result of my running style, up on my toes. Some of the stretches that work for me are the wall lean, toe raises and walking on my heels. Other stretches I do are targeted at other muscle groups and are almost identical to some of the yoga poses. If me shins are starting to get sore I do some of the exercises physical therapist showed me for either the calf strain or stress fracture. Can't remember which, but they strengthen the outside shin muscles which become weak because of the calves.

Injuries. Plantar Fasciitis, achilles tendonitis, calf strain, stress fracture, broken bones, ankle sprains. I'll expand on these when we get back from camping this weekend.

10.2 easy miles this morning. The .2 is because I'm a geek and I'm tired of seeing that .8 on my log. Should have run on the golf course but 10 miles is to far for that. Did the house to Stones River Battlefield loop. Very warm, didn't need to wear my headlamp, my bare white chest with heart rate strap reflects more light than the headlamp anyway. Started nice and slow but started picking up the pace on the way back home. Had to slow down the last 3 miles, I was clipping along at marathon pace feeling really good. That's one of the things that seems to lead to injury for me, picking it up and running hard when I should be recovering.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Customer service

Thought customer service was a thing of the past. Seems like its getting harder and harder to find. Good news, it isn't dead. A/C starting acting up towards the end of summer last year. The motor that pulls the heat out from the coils was going out and finally did go out. Called Tenpenny Heat and Air in Murfreesboro and explained what I thought was the problem. He said he'd be out the next day. He calls me up the next day and tells me, "you're all fixed". Huh? He'd came out later the day I'd called to see what motor was needed, so when he came back the next day he could repair it. Wow.

I've been putting off getting new shoes to the point that on my next run my toes would be poking through the top of the shoe. Design defect in the Asic 2130's I've been using the last couple of years. They keep making the shoes heavier in the sole, but cheapen up on the uppers. Actually bought a different brand this time last year because I was so disgusted with the 2130's. Hated that shoe and went back to the 2130's.

Pet Peeve. Design changes and/or model changes in shoes. Every year the shoe changes color or has a slight design change, to justify the increased price? I quit wearing Nike's 10+ years ago because they stopped making the Pegasus shoe that was my favorite at the time. Now it's back, but not me, haven't worn a Nike shoe since. Asic's does the same thing but each evolution of the 2130 has been acceptable, except for the price. Now it's called the 3000.

Roadrunner sports use to show the previous model in their catalog in a table format with the weights of the shoes, very informative. They've quit doing that. I still buy from them primarily because I hate to pay retail. Plus most stores don't keep very many of the old models or discount them very much. That's typically how I'd buy my shoes. I buy the previous model that has been discounted. I haven't bought online now for the last 3 pairs of shoes. What the heck, the extra $20 is my donation to the local running economy.

I've shopped all 3 different stores in Nashville that sell running shoes, Athletes House, Fleetfeet and Team Nashville. No complaints on customer service at any of these stores. Fleet feet has a store in Murfreesboro as well. I've been to Team Nashville a couple of times at the old store location, they've since moved down the street closer to I-440. My only complaint on that store would be the tiny size of the shop, but I hear that has been addressed with the new store.

Yesterday was my first time at the Athletes House. This will be my new destination store for shoes. It's a throwback to the type of running store I found in Texas, lots of inventory stacked to the ceiling, but not crowded so much that you couldn't move around in the store. Speedy told me about the discount section in the back of the store. That's were I headed when I walked in the door. I pretty well knew what I wanted and Maureen helped me find a shoe. Ended up with the Asics Cumulus. Great shoe. Both her and Speedy had recommended just on my description the shoe that had been working for me and what I thought I needed. Love it! Also reminded me of the Phiddippe's (sp?) store in Atlanta owned by Jeff Galloway.

This mornings workout rocked! Must have been the new shoes. Almost felt like running with lightweight trainers, similar to the Asics DS trainer series. Didn't try and climb the fence to get on the track for my 12 x 200 meter repeats. 3 mile warmup and 2.5 mile cool down. Splits came in a little hot. Wind in my face for the first 4, averaged 40's, wind at my back next 4, averaged 38, last 4 back into the wind averaged 39. Target was 41.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

1st ride

Finally got the road bike on the road this morning. 18.25 miles in an hour. Felt great to have the wind in my face again. Easy to see why those who can't run, bike instead. Wore the heart rate monitor for grins. Amazing the actual heart rate versus perceived effort, much different than running. Average heart rate was 131 bpm on the bike, running that's recovery HR. Maximum HR on the little hills was 145 bpm which is easy run pace. But on the bike it felt like tempo pace with the hard breathing. Also, the burn in the quads and hamstrings is noticeable versus running.

Hills are tougher on the ups on the bike versus running. Payback is the downhill, what a blast zooming down the hills. Easier to rest on the bike, either sit up or change cadence. See a lot more on the bike, only because you cover so much ground. A head wind on the bike seems to slow you down more on the bike versus running. Tail winds though significantly push you on the bike, with no effect running. Drafting on the bike is a definite advantage and also a good recovery method. Only time drafting while running would seem to be beneficial would be into a headwind.

Made sure to announce my presence to walkers/runners/bikers I overtook. Easy to forget the "on your left/right". Lots of folks out on the greenway especially for 5:30-6:30 in the morning. Maybe they're trying to beat the heat. Looks like the summer heat pattern has arrived. Great for biking, not so much for running. One thing that took a long time for me to get use to on the bike was all of the gear. I still think most bike riders, "roadies" look silly with all of the gear. But, most of it makes sense once you ride a few times. The shorts with padding are a must. The jersey with pockets in the back, zipper in the front and skin tight is readily apparent after a long ride.

Big downside is the cost. Easy to drop a wad of cash really quickly. My suggestion would be to ask around and borrow someones bike for a week or 2. Most riders have a couple. That way you can figure out if biking is for you or not. Entry level bikes are around $600 or so nowadays. Easy to find one of those for around $300 on craigslist. Or the older bikes for around $100 or so. I'm still riding the $80 bike I bought/saved from the trash. Great forum for all things bikes. Use the search function, most questions have been asked a few times already.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Heat won, me zero

Sadly it's not even that warm yet. Upper 60's with close to 100% humidity. (glasses kept fogging) Left the house before sunrise, around 4:45. Based on my last tempo attempt, when it was a little cooler and FM2 to pull me, I decided on 3 miles of tempo. Plan was 7:00, 6:50, and 6:40. Actuals were 6:44 and 6:41, but no mile 3. I was spent maintaining the second mile. Tried to do another mile after a minute recovery, but caved on that after a quarter mile. No excuse, big "P".

Looking at the heart rate when I got home, my average heart rate on mile 2 was 167 bpm. That's about 5 bpm higher than the same effort when it was cooler earlier in the spring. Definitely will take some time to bring down the times and increase the endurance. Lots of time before any attempt to go sub 19 for a 5k. Early July or August. Temperatures will likely be in the upper 70's with sun. Lots of acclimating to do.

This is why I can't get excited about running Moon Pie. I have a target pace of around 6:40. I'd really like to get an age group award, once. Usually I average around 7:00 miles. Take the first at pace or usually a little to quick. Around mile 7 is the caving point when the heat starts kicking my rear. Usually only a couple of people ahead or behind to keep me honest and I fade. Just once I'd like to go out easy, crest the hill at mile four and go negative.

Tomorrow is an off day. Time to get the road bike out.

Monday, June 2, 2008

One baby

Now I know why the geese at the golf course were making so much racket and why one would disappear for awhile. They had baby this morning, well not actually this morning. As big as it was it must have hatched a week or so ago. All I saw was one baby, but I didn't get that close. Geese don't play around, they come right at you honking, hissing and biting.

Recovery run this morning went well. Started out slow and gradually picked it up. Didn't really plan on it, but it turned into a nice progression run according to the heart rate. It graphed out on a nice uphill rise. Never really looked at the watch, just picked up the pace on the second loop, without pushing to hard. Moderate effort, about 8:00 pace. Still slow enough for a recovery.

Golf course was in great shape, despite all of the recent rain. They must have mowed the grass on Saturday before the rains hit as well.(that's what we did) The fairways and cart paths were super smooth, plus the sun was up at 5:00 am, so I could see everything.

Dylan is getting pretty good on the skateboard. We went back out to the YMCA park in Smyrna on Sunday afternoon. Had to wait because of lightning? We'd driven away from the storm in Murfreesboro, and it just blew over in Smyrna. Found out the skate park in Murfreesboro isn't really under repair, not yet anyway. They're waiting to raise enough money to repair it. They used wood for the ramps versus the park in Smyrna which is built to withstand the weather. Evidently the cost to build a park like the one in Smyrna is around $100k. No wonder the wait to rebuild the one in the 'boro.

Dylan finally mastered the half pipe. He goes off of all of the ramps. Older kids were still trying to go off some of the smaller ramps. He did come back and put on his wrist guards after one tumble. That's probably a good thing, it doesn't take much to break your wrist. Darrell did it when he was Dylan's age, tripping on the sidewalk. Good to see these kids have picked up one trait from dad:) Even though it isn't an especially good trait.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

red, blue and yellow

Lots of yellow, as in American Gold Finch this morning. Did 11.1 miles at Spain Hill this morning after the rain had stopped. We lost power last night for a couple of hours. This morning the cable was out, no Internet. Lots of lightning and a steady rain. Finished up the results for the Cardiac Center 5k, waiting for the rain to pass or lightning to stop.

Looked like it would start raining again at any minute for the first several miles. That's where I saw all of the gold finches. Tiny little birds. The blue birds I saw were actually larger. Saw a few cardinals, buzzards, mockingbirds, a single hawk and a rafter of turkeys. (yea, doesn't sound right does it) Sun popped out on the last few miles, good thing the wind picked and was blowing in my face.