Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Track workout tonight with some of the New Orleans Track Club (NOTC) members. The scheduled plan was for

4x800 @ 2 mile pace with 2 minutes of rest in between (walking, no jogging)
5 minute jog
4x800 @ 5k pace with 1 minute of rest

I had an idea in mind about what my goal paces were but quickly realized that I should just go with the guys in front because the gap between us and the next runner was significant enough that it probably wouldn't have felt very taxing. My eight 800s ended up being

2:35.4, 2:31.7, 2:34.8, 2:35.4 for the first set
2:42.5, 2:39.9, 2:40.8, 2:38.3 for the second

Came out to a 5:14 average. These felt pretty good, considering how little speed/stamina work I've done in the past 3 months. My breathing was fine throughout, it was my legs that could have used a little help (EPO, anyone?). That will get better the more workouts I do, however.

I'm hoping to stick mainly to tempo runs/fartleks and maaayybe some longer track workouts. I'd rather focus on stamina than speed at this point. 800s will probably be the shortest repeat I do (that's such a blanket statement that will almost certainly not hold true, but whatever).

Good last workout of 2008!


Went out for a longer run at 1 this afternoon and it ended up being a pretty well paced effort. Did a bunch of laps of Audubon Park's outer trail loop which is just over 2 miles averaging 6:45ish pace for a 9.8 mile run. The effort level was not 'easy' but it was really close. I could hold that pace for a long time.

Also ran with May for 4 miles later in the afternoon (at 5) at a great, easy pace that really felt excellent. It was cooler, which was awesome. I was surprised at how nice it felt to do another run so soon after a good, long effort.


Felt a little better on my run today but only physically because mentally it was tough to know that my mileage suffered so much this week. Luckily, a down week was 'on the schedule' but not as down as this week was. Oh well, stuff happens. Fortunately it was apathy, not injury that caused the downward spiral. In Charlotte I just don't have that much else to do other than work out, but here at home there are so many other options that sometimes it's hard to motivate myself to go out for a run or a bike (or swim I guess, but that's a whole different ball of wax) when I could just spend time with the family. Just under 9 miles today in an hour.


Did a quick bike ride, the first part of which was with my dad and younger brother. It was funny to be all kitted up for a ride while leisurely riding along at 12 mph. Don't do that everyday. Went out and back on the levee to get in 19 miles...most of it at a pretty quick pace. I'm looking forward to training camp; my cycling fitness really needs it.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


AM: (barely)
Went out for what should have been a 10 mile run but I only ended up doing a little over 5 because of the heat and humidity. As soon as I started out my HR was really sky-high (10-15 bpm over what it normally is!) and I didn't feel all that stellar. It was 70 degrees with 70 percent humidity when I started and when I got home and checked, said it was 80 degrees. That is a big difference for my body. The last run I did in Charlotte (on Monday) was clear and cold (30) so I'm hoping that the heat and the day off contributed to my not-so-great feelings... Got in a 1.8 mile tempo though in around 6:05 pace, which felt pretty terrible. I'm hoping to get in an easy (longer than today) run in tomorrow and then maybe a real workout with a group on Friday. We shall see. Merry Christmas

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Drove 11 hours back home to New Orleans today and was in no mood to run. Good thing too, since it was dark when I arrived and doing anything after dark in New Orleans can end up being a relatively sketchy experience. It's 65 here...

Monday, December 22, 2008


Sat around most of the day but was slightly productive owing to the fact that I got my car's tires rotated (about 3000 miles too late), my oil changed (not too late, as I use synthetic oil which is nice but too expensive), and my car inspected (my previous inspection was done in November of Virginia; yes the sticker was still on my car). That took a big chunk out of my day and an even bigger chunk out of my wallet. That is added to the large chunk of change I dropped on a new bike frame last night: the Planet-X Stealth Pro Carbon.

So that's pretty exciting. Hopefully all goes according to plan and I have a new bike ready to rock on February 28th when my first race rolls around...I suppose there's also the issue of being able to really 'afford' it but I know how to be careful (usually).

Got in 10 miles tonight, about 4 by myself and about 6 with Chris. We talked the whole time and I was pretty out of breath and tired. One of the reasons my HR is consistently higher on 'group' runs is either a) I'm just more excited or b) there is talking. I'm hoping it's the latter. Not that it really matters. Didn't feel too hot today; it was 30 degrees so maybe that explains it.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


Motivated myself to actually get on my bike after scouring the internet for adequate Tri framesets that I don't technically NEED but really, really want. I feel like if I want to go anywhere in this sport I have to not only BE fast; I must also FEEL fast. Mental preparation and readiness is so important in competitions like triathlons because you have to really WANT to do well to finish well. So, shaving your legs makes you LOOK faster and consequently you'll probably go a little faster as well. With a tri-specific frameset, however, it's really not only about looking fast because the correct geometry and aerodynamics of a decent triathlon frame far exceed the capabilities of my beloved Klein's road racing geometry. As much as I love that bike (and really, I do), triathlons are really not it's future.

That being said, I got in a short but fast bike ride today (50 minutes) and covered a "staggering" 17.3 miles while out there. I was little underdressed for 50 degree weather so it was slightly chilly. I could have used some arm warmers.

After the bike I put on my shoes and headed out for a little over 2 loops to get in my first transition run in a while and also get up to 70.3 miles on the week! Woo-hoo, a career high. I feel pretty solid too and I feel as though my body is certainly capable of handling higher running mileage but at this point it's not really necessary to push that boundary.


Kept it pretty easy tonight on the booty loop. I was having a little trouble motivating myself so I sat around for a bit once we got home from work in a light drizzle - not cold - that fizzled my desire to run quite a bit. Once I got out there, however, it was really almost pleasant. 65 degrees with a cool rain is never a bad thing, especially if it's not a heavy rain (which it wasn't). Set a new high in mileage with today's run.

Friday, December 19, 2008


AM: Woke up and for the first time in my life forgot that today was my birthday. I guess once you're past 21 it's not a big deal anymore. You just get older. At least when you turn 25 you supposedly get a nice car insurance break. At 30, you are 30; that's a big deal (in a bad way). Then you just keep going, and going, and going until one start taking Viagra. Then you go some more.

PM: Celebrated in style with a 10 mile run that felt just 'ok.' Wasn't great, wasn't bad. You know the drill. Not as quick of a pace as the last two days but still under 7:30 on a hilly course (for Charlotte). I'll be at a career high for miles after tomorrow, actually. I'm at 53-55 right now (I can't remember exactly and don't feel like looking at my log) and tomorrow I'll be adding 9-10 miles to that and since 60.4 is my high......I'll be awesome again!!! Yay

The injury to my hand rules out swimming (and biking too as the cut is right where my hands sit on the hoods) so I'm just going to let it heal before doing any of that. Well, I might bike on Sunday and next week but I'm going to bandage the s*** out of my hand.


PM: After gashing my hand today at work I was scared that getting my HR up would lead to blood pouring out of what was basically an open wound (that honestly could use a stitch or two) and me fainting and dying. Well, just kidding. Sort of. But not really. Did a quick 9.4 miles today in just over an hour and did 1 lap at my cap HR. Felt pretty solid, the quick lap was...quick. I'm feeling quick these days. My quickness has become quick quickly. I'm tired.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Got my new Adidas Adizero Tempo lightweight trainers in the mail when I got home from work and really flexed their muscle on my run today. Kept it easy and did the exact same route as yesterday, except for a little over 2 minutes faster with only a 1 bpm rise in average HR. I felt really, really solid today and am confident in my ability to put down some pretty good run times this coming year. I might do a MAF assessment test on Sunday because I'm almost sure my MAF mile is in the 6:40s range right now. That's down over a minute from when I started this gig 3+ months ago. That's some real progress. My endurance has come a long way as well, as I can finish a 10 mile run and feel perfectly fine. Hungry (my god was I hungry in the last 15 minutes of my run today) but very fresh.

I was within 3 feet of getting hit by a dumba** driver today who wasn't paying enough attention when SHE was turning left. I was watching her the whole time, knowing that she was not looking for pedestrians and just waiting to see what would happen. I was 'prepared' to jump out of the way if she didn't see me but she did (albeit late as heck) and I hopefully scared some s*** out of her and some sense into her.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Got in 10.35 miles tonight in some pretty dreary weather. Did 3 laps of the booty loop and then added on an out-back to get up and over 10. Felt pretty fatigued, but that's understandable considering the number of miles I've put in recently. In the past 30 days I'm up over 200, not bad. I'm excited for this week, but know that my mileage is going to take a pretty big hit from Dec 29th to January 20th - a lot of that 'hit' will be countered with a massive bump in bike mileage, but still. I'm thinking that I'll take a couple of down weeks, maybe 50 next week and then a couple of weeks around 30-45 depending on how I can fit it in my schedule. Also not sure about swimming, but I think I'll be able to do at least one swim while I'm at home and maybe even an open water event in the Gulf if we go to our beach house.

Monday, December 15, 2008


Went out for a long run and since I wasn't wearing my HR belt it ended up being a little faster than I really intended. Not a bad thing, just means that I was more tired at the end than I would have been otherwise. Got in 13.52 miles in ~95 minutes and was happy that it was the longest run I've done in a good long while. My plan to hit 70 this week has started pretty much on track.

I was going to swim this evening but I've been feeling pretty tired all day so I decided to bag that and just be lazy the rest of the day. Considering I probably burned over 1400 calories on my run this morning (it was actually pretty warm outside today - and will be the rest of this week) I think it's ok that I sat around and ate some junk food.

I was running by this day school at about mile 8 or 9 and it was recess time so there were a ton of kids out in the fenced in playground of the school. As I was running by this group of boys runs up to the fence and one of them said "Excuse me! Excuse me! Could you please get that?" and pointed at a nerf football sitting just out of their reach. I said sure and picked it up and tossed it to him. As I started to run again I heard him saying "Thank you sir" and I was really taken aback by how polite this kid was. It's funny to me that rather than that being the norm it's really the exception. So many people these days - let alone children - just don't have any sense of etiquette or decency. They don't care when they're impolite or rude and don't care about anything other than what they are doing or want. Some people really are just selfish. I would have thrown the football to them regardless of how polite they were but the fact that this kid was so polite made me feel a little better about society. I guess it didn't hurt that this child was attending a very, very nice school and his parents hopefully are raising him well and in complete comfort. No, that definitely probably certainly contributes.

Sunday, December 14, 2008


25 mile bike ride on the Booty Loop in the 40 degree weather. Actually, it may have been slightly higher than that but I don't really care because I felt very cold. My toes were like little ice blocks at the end of a measly 1:15 bike ride. For shame. Felt just ok on this ride. My legs were tired and didn't really agree with the whole 'biking' thing. I wasn't going slow though, which was a small consolation. When training camp rolls around on January 7th I am going to be thrashed. Cory is going to ride me pretty much into the ground. Should

6.1 miles on the treadmill to get up to 60 for the week. A light drizzle began as I was returning from my bike ride so that instantly de-motivated me for an outdoor run, even though I really wanted to get in a transition run this week. Oh well. Mixed up the paces a lot just to keep from being bored. Did a bit as fast as 5:15 pace and a bit as slow as 15:00 pace. I enjoyed the walking pace much more.

Did my swim exercises as well plus a lot of stretching after the run before hopping in the pool for a quick 100 yards. Yes, I jumped in the pool for a mere 100 yards (that's 4 laps, fyi). I really just wanted to cool down a bit and loosen up and it worked moderately well in achieving those goals. Just gotta keep working on that stroke; it felt pretty good today. Still have a long way to go if I want to do a ~31-34 minute swim come April.

As a side note, this week I got in 11 hours and 40 minutes of swimming, biking and running. While not a career high, it is close. I feel pretty tired, but not in a way that I can't get over with rest and food. I don't have any pains or injuries that I'm aware of (always nice). My career high came back in August but I had 50 more miles of biking that week and biking is where you really get your hours in on a weekly basis. Although the trade-off is of course my run volume wasn't nearly as high then (13000 yds swimming for 4:07, 82 miles biking in 4:05 and 27.6 miles running in 3:30 hrs). There are trade-offs with everything in life I guess.


Did my usual run but instead of doing 3 easy laps plus an add-on I decided I wanted to test myself out and see how I felt about going fast after having some miles in my legs. So I did my first two laps at relatively easy pace (although not quite as easy as I had intended) then did a lap at 170 bpm. It was tough at first to get my HR going enough to get up to 170, my legs just didn't want to turnover fast enough. But I managed and ended up with just under 3 miles at 6:12 pace all while feeling pretty comfortable. I was tired for sure, but I think that was a combination of all the miles this/last week and the not quite so easy miles before the hard stuff. Not too shabby.

Also did a little bit of swimming at the Y. Swam a continuous 400 free and for the first time felt pretty solid in the water. The stroke is starting to feel much more natural, which is a big step. The more and more I do the exercises (which I also did today) and practice my ODS (also did that today) the better it'll feel and the smoother I'll become.

Friday, December 12, 2008


With my birthday a week from today I decided to do an early celebration by...running 9+ miles yayy!!! Just kidding, I was scheduled for 9+ so I ran 9+. Pretty uneventful except for the fact that my stomach was kicking my a** on the run (almost literally...). I took it very easy - average HR of just 141 - but my pace was still decent and sub 7:30.

Drove to the Y from my run to swim but realized that I had left my swimsuit behind. I probably could have done the swim in my running shorts but I was already skeptical of swimming anyway so I just decided to bag it and do some light resistance workouts that Lance gave me last week instead. They consist of basically strengthening my shoulders/upper back/weird arm muscles that are all involved in getting me to both pop my elbow consistently in the beginning of the 'catch' phase and to push strongly all the way through to my hip. It's a lot harder than it sounds.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


Got in a solid 9.85 mile run tonight and it wasn't even raining! Throughout the day at work it rained and poured but once 5 o'clock rolled around the clouds started to dissappear...if only to make way for the moon. Ran 2 laps of the Dilworth loop with people then added on a little over 2 by myself to make sure I stay on track this week. I think my endurance has definitely improved this past month. A 9 mile run no longer feels like it leaves me tired. In fact, I've been having trouble falling asleep for the past week, but I'm not really sure if there's a correlation between that fact and the length of my runs. If I had to hazard a guess, I'd say there isn't one.

I'm trying to come up with a good Christmas list (better late than never) and have so far put one thing on it: the Giro Advantage 2 aero helmet. I can't decide on things because I'm never sure whether they will be a lasting investment. For example, I want a pair of tri shoes for the bike but it's hard to justify that when I'll probably only use them for races and they wouldn't give me much advantage in transition. The aero helmet, on the other hand, is THE most cost effective aerodynamic improvement you can make to your setup for races. So instead of purchasing a whole new tri bike I'm going to turn my beloved (and old!) Klein Q-Carbon Team into a triathlon setup. Hopefully it will fit correctly.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Enjoyed an easy run in a light to moderate rain tonight. Did my usual 3 laps of the Booty loop plus an add on to get me to 9.4 miles in under an hour and ten minutes. Felt pretty solid doing so. It's kind of amazing to me how many 'fair weather exercisers' there are out there; so many people claim to be 'runners' or 'bikers,' etc but chicken out when the weather is 'inclement.' I'll be the first to admit that I do indeed run on the treadmill at times but it's usually because of convenience, not cowardice (exaggeration). Really, it was so, so nice out tonight (60 degrees and a cool rain) but I only saw one other person running. Oh well, everyone's loss.

Did a little over half of the masters swim class at the Dowd before cutting out due to cramps in my left calf that refused to go away as much as I tried to work them out; I was also very tired. Did a bunch of 200 stuff (drill, free, stroke, kick, etc) which means that 200 is now the longest continuous swim I've done with this 'new' stroke. Felt pretty nice at times, but I still can feel my muscles start to get tired around the 100 mark. Gonna take a LOT of practice to get this going well.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


On a spur of the moment, I decided to join some people for a track workout, something my legs haven't seen or even thought about in a long time. I got there a bit early so I could get in a decent (and slow) warm-up by myself then ran with Scott and Jocelyn (and later the always cheery Chris Cummins) before the workout. Scott and Jocelyn were doing 2x1.5 @ 6:10 pace and then a 1 mile so I decided that sounded like it would be fun and joined in for some slam bang fun.

Note: I have not 'abandoned' the HR training plan, I've just started modifying it to gradually include more threshold work and higher intensities so by the time February rolls around (first race) I'll be able to lay down a pretty good time while still peaking for New Orleans (in an ideal world, of course).

Jocelyn, being the excellent pacer that she is, led everything on pretty exact pace for the first one (9:16) and then a bit faster for the second (9:11). She and I did one more mile and for whatever reason I decided to progress each lap and ended up with a 5:55. It's amazing how different those paces feel. 6:10 feels very comfortable. My breathing is regular, controlled and I don't experience any acid buildup in my legs. I guess speed-work really does have it's benefits. All told got in 9.75 with warm up and cool down today. I think I'm going to shoot for 60 this week, not 55.

Monday, December 8, 2008


2nd coaching session with Lance at 8am in Huntersville today (NOMAD); I felt a lot better about my stroke today than I did last time. I feel as though if I practice enough and everything clicks this will make me much more powerful and efficient. My stroke count is already down (per 25 yds) but I feel awkward and choppy. Got in maybe 500-600 yards during the lesson.

Went to the Harris Y to work through some of the new drills Lance gave me but I forgot a couple of my pool 'toys' and consequently couldn't do everything I wanted. I was pretty exhausted from the earlier session which, even though it was 'light' was still tiring. The South Meck HS swim team was practicing or something in 3 of the 6 lanes (about 5-6 per lane) so the water was extra choppy which was moderately annoying. Plus, half of them goofed off a good bit and the coach did nothing but talk on the phone and give them the workout. I was not impressed, although a lot of them were a good bit faster than me. Oh well.

Ran from the Dowd Y with Cummins, Jocelyn, and Pete for 6 miles but really slogged through it as I felt pretty tuckered out...the swimming today really left me hurting for any energy and I just felt super sluggish on this run. I was originally planning on getting there early and doing 2-3 beforehand but the Panthers MNF game caused a ton of traffic so my late(r) arrival nixed that idea.

Sunday, December 7, 2008


Ran a bit on the treadmill to get to 50 miles for the week and just kind of get rid of some of the built up laziness in my legs from the lack of activity on Saturday. Did the run 5 minutes, walk 1 on repeat until the Saints game was over. Didn't feel spectacular, but that's fine.

Did the ODS in the pool today. I think I'm starting to feel how everything is supposed to work together but a good stroke still feels as though it is a long way off...I'm impatient. I'm having a hard time getting my rotation down but I know that I can work it out; hip rotation used to be a key component in what I believe was an excellent golf swing (long gone sadly) and I just need to get that muscle memory going again.

Friday, December 5, 2008


Went for a run with the intention of it being a pretty average easy run (and by easy I mean very easy). I just started going and kept my HR super low (high 130s to low 140s when it's usually high 140s to low 150s) and time just kind of sped right by...

So I ended up doing 12.9 miles, not too bad. It felt very easy and my legs only became fatigued around the 1:20 mark. I remember at one point looking at my watch and I was 35 minutes in and then the next time I looked I was at 1:22. That pretty much wraps it up for the week in terms of running; I'll do ~4 miles on Sunday when I get back from South Carolina to bring me up to 50 for the week. Next week I'm going to hit 55 (hopefully, of course) and then an increase again the week after. It'll be fun.

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Ran 2 loops of 3.72 miles with the group. First one was a little faster than I intended but this was one of my 2 days/week where I don't have to care about my HR so I went with it. We ended up averaging 6:45/mi pace really only just pushing on the hills. That's faster than I have run in a long time (3+ months I think) and it felt very good and very easy...not bad. Second loop was a little less intense; it started drizzling a little bit but it wasn't cold (~50) tonight so the rain felt nice. I think some of the best runs I've ever had have been in the rain and almost all of them involved getting over a mental rut. I would be having a down week or two and then I sacked up and went out for a run in less than ideal conditions and ended up really digging it. Today wasn't really like that because my running has been going pretty well but it reminded me of those moments so it was extra cool.

One thing that really annoys me is when people pull up to a light but pass over the intended 'stop line' and/or over the cross walk. I mean, is it really gonna save you that much time, that 5' of space you don't have to traverse when the light turns green? There's definitely a reason 'stop lines' are painted on the roads. The worst is when you're trying to turn left and this car is basically a full car length over where it should be and you have to swing wide and go into the other lane or do something crazy. I like to pass very close to these cars and maybe give them a hint that they're idiots. Plus if I make a mistake and hit them I can just say they pulled into the lane of traffic and sue the s*** out of them. That would be a real lesson.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


Just kidding. No way I'm waking up to run at 5:30 when it's 20 degrees out unless I've got a really, really good reason.

Did the same run as yesterday except almost 2 minutes faster. My 3rd lap of booty netted me a 6:59 average pace which is pretty sweet. I was definitely going faster than 'easy' pace but it was still 'easy' if that makes any sense. I like that my breathing is basically the same anywhere from ~7 to ~8 minute pace. I'm pretty excited about my running potential for next year. I think I could take some fairly significant leaps with the base I'm building right now in my legs. 16:30 5k? Who knows, anything is possible (not really, but it makes you feel better if you tell yourself that. Go ahead, try it)

Our softball game was canceled as the other team was a no-show which is always a huge pain in the a** because we all go out there, get warmed up and then have no game. I could have gone swimming 30 minutes earlier if I had just known...ugh those lazy pricks. So I went to the Y and got in a short 1100 yard swim doing a lot more freestyle than I've been doing with my ODS. The new stroke definitely changes the muscle groups I work which will require some significant adaptation but it certainly feels smoother if I put it all together correctly. I haven't timed anything yet because it would be silly to compare times at this stage. There were these two high school guys a couple of lanes over that swam for a while and then raced each other (they were definitely not swimmers) and it was funny because they were working really, really hard but going really, really slow. It's the exact opposite of what I'm trying to do! So cool!


Tuesday, December 2, 2008


PM: Ran 8.65 miles on the booty loop today and felt pretty snazzy. I felt a little fatigue in my quads on the last lap (of 3) but other than that it was fine and dandy. Not too cold, maybe only 35 "real feel" which isn't really that bad. I wore shorts and under armor with a wind vest (plus the requisite gloves and beanie) and felt great. Added some new tunes to my running mix (MGMT's Kids, Time to Pretend and Disturbed's Land of Confusion) and all were great additions to what is already a stellar running mix. Thought about swimming afterward but I was feeling a little tired as I didn't get much sleep last night.


Started things off right today with a 2050 yard swim...doing my optimal drill sequence (ODS) given to me by my coach, Lance (how badass is it to have a name like Lance and be in the endurance sport business?). That basically entails doing a lot of work to change the way my catch, initiation, and pull sequence work together to create more power and more efficiency, which add up to me going a lot faster while doing less work. That's a combination anyone can enjoy.

Did 2 miles and some change before meeting up with a group to run 6+ from the Dowd Y. It had been a while since I did the Monday group run and I was happy to make my return. It was a good group consisting of some good runners and one professional triathlete, which is pretty cool. I decided last week that I'm going to let myself not care about my HR a couple of times a week just so I don't become overly obsessed with it when my readings may be higher (or lower, but mainly higher) than I feel like they really should be; I consequently let myself run at the pace the group was going and felt really good.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Trying to toot my own horn, but likely failing

I was just perusing my training log and since I'm coming up on (close to) one year of regular exercise - at first running but then biking and later swimming - I thought it would be interesting to look at what I've accomplished in that time span. Speaking purely in terms of hours and miles/yards (later on in the year I'll list some performance accomplishments that I think are noteworthy...and I'm sure it's only me who thinks so)

Since January 1st, 2008

- I have swam 97,000 yards (just under 59 miles) averaging just over 2,000 yards/week (but that is only since July or so, which skews that stat a bit). That's the equivalent of 3880 laps in a "short course" pool (25 yards per length). That's a s***load of laps and it's a) not even that many for a triathlete and b) not even a half-year's worth.

- I have biked 1,334 miles, averaging just under 29/week. The bike miles will definitely have to increase in 2009.

- I ran 1,703 miles, averaging 35.5 per week. Haha, I think it's funny that I have run more than I biked in the past 11 months. Kind of sad. My average run has been 6.5 miles (paltry). Keep in mind, however that I rarely run more than 6 times per week and have taken (combined) several weeks off for injuries and/or down time. Not too bad.

I don't feel particularly beat up, but it does make me a little tired looking at all that. Funny, because relatively speaking it's not a very high amount of training. I'm sure, if things go according to plan, that 2009 will be more intense.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

M & M

I discovered today that I really only listen to Eminem when I'm frustrated or angry. Unfortunately this realization didn't enlighten me as to why I'm currently frustrated and/or angry but at least now I know. Eminem used to be an anytime kind of music for me to listen to but that started changing towards the end of junior year and my musical tastes completely shifted senior year. I guess "Lose Yourself" is still a good pump up song but all the stuff of his that I used to listen to regularly has now pretty much been relegated to the "F*** the world" mood swings.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Ironman New Orleans 70.3 - April 5, 2009

No, it's not a full Ironman. I'm not ready for that kind of challenge. The 70.3 distance is much more realistic for me at this stage of my athletic "career."

It consists of a 1.2 mile swim (~1900m), 56 mile bike ride, and a 13.1 mile run. The swim is in Lake Ponchartrain (gross). The bike goes east from there on an out and back loop and the run takes you South towards downtown New Orleans finishing in Jackson square (pretty badass if you know the area).

A lot of effort will go into getting ready for this shebang, as I don't want to waste money (225 to register! yikes) and I want to really lay it all out there when I [hopefully] complete the race. I won't post any time goals for a while, but just know that they're ambitious. Which shouldn't be a surprise if you know me.

There are 2 slots for Ironman 70.3 World Championships available for 18-24 year olds. That'd be a fun prize, but I'm fairly sure that it's not very realistic, unfortunately.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Role Models: go see it. That's all you need to know.

Not too much in my life that I would describe as 'eventful' right now. Work has been normal, albeit with more 'responsibility' so far than last year. I expected this, so it's nothing surprising. It's also one of the reasons I decided to do a second year.

New training program has been going on for 7 weeks now, with nothing special to report on it besides the fact that it's going pretty well. My AC mile has gone from 7:45ish to 7:00 or so. I'm up to 45 miles and by the end of next month will be up to 55. I'm not sure when I'll stop increasing my mileage, as I kind of want to see how my body reacts to 60, 70+ miles before I figure out where I'll just maintain for a bit. Should be fun.

I've been playing a fair amount of the new Guitar Hero: World Tour and it's definitely better than 3 (Legends of Rock). It's a little easier (so far) but definitely a better overall game. Gears of War 2 is also a better game; deeper story, better graphics, and more intuitive gameplay all add up to a very solid sequel.

Very exciting post, I know.

Friday, October 31, 2008


Just got back from the "National Leadership Conference" (or something like that) in Talladega, AL. Just a bunch of training stuff for AmeriCorps and site coordinators. Nothing very exciting.

Went running tonight in one of the nicer neighborhoods in Charlotte (Dilworth) and was struck by the number of people driving around in vans to trick-or-treat. I get that these people probably come from some areas of town that aren't as safe and want their kids to have a great Halloween experience but can't you park and walk? Do you really have to van around with 10 kids (no exaggeration) packed into a minivan built for 5-7? The safety factor is not a priority, apparently. Primary objectives include: get lots of candy, get lots of candy.

Also, I hate the teenagers that don't even dress up but walk around to get candy. I always hated that growing up and it annoys me even more at my ripe old age of 23 (soon to be 24). At least put in some effort. I can also assure you that most people giving away candy hate that phenonemon. People are getting lazy these days. Driving from house to house and not even dressing up; we're going to all be fat soon.

Friday, October 24, 2008

I kissed a girl, and I LIKED it

Where would Katy Perry fall in the list of the best worst music I've ever enjoyed? Probably near the bottom, because she has a triumvirate of appeal: sick musician, attractive, and to top it all of she sings about making out with girls.

I just get the feeling that her most famous song, "I kissed a girl" would not be quite as popular or as well received if it were written from a different perspective. Let's see

I kissed a boy and I liked it - Keith Perry

This was never the way I planned
Not my intention
I got so brave, drink in hand
Lost my discretion
It's not what, I'm used to
Just wanna try you on
I'm curious for you
Caught my attention

I kissed a boy and I liked it
The taste of his cherry chapstick
I kissed a boy just to try it
I hope my other boyfriend don't mind it
It felt so wrong
It felt so right
Don't mean I'm in love tonight
I kissed a boy and I liked it
I liked it

No, I don't even know your name
It doesn't matter,
You're my experimental game
Just human nature,
It's not what,
Good boys do
Not how they should behave
My head gets so confused
Hard to obey

I kissed a boy and I liked it
The taste of his cherry chap stick
I kissed a boy just to try it
I hope Jack don't mind it
It felt so wrong
It felt so right
Don't mean I'm in love tonight
I kissed a boy and I liked it
I liked it,

Us men we are so magical
Soft skin, skin-toned lips, so kissable
Hard to resist so touchable
Too good to deny it
Ain't no big deal, it's innocent

I kissed a boy and I liked it
The taste of his cherry chap stick
I kissed a boy just to try it
I hope Dennis don't mind it
It felt so wrong
It felt so right
Don't mean I'm in love tonight
I kissed a boy and I liked it
I liked it

Not quite the same, eh?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


I'm fairly positive that this gas 'crisis' is a giant government conspiracy. To test the effects of a hypothetical situation where the US 'ran out' of gas the powers-that-be decided a good test run could be had in western North Carolina. My car's gas light came on last Wednesday and I haven't had the opportunity to fill it up since. There is no logical explanation for why there is no gas in this major southern city. No reason for it. You can cite the disturbed production in Texas but there is no reason for that to halt any other region from funneling some of their fuel into places that needed it just as much as they did. The lines for gas are insane at some of the stations. Serious traffic problems have resulted from these (literally) hundreds of cars waiting in line - in the lane of traffic - to fill up before the station closes. It's absolutely ridiculous.

On a side note, I'm going for the Rays this post-season. I don't think they'll make it too far but still, I'd rather root for a team from our division that isn't named the Red Sox than any other, so Rays it is.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Saturday and a 1 day weekend looms

You know who's awesome? David Gray is awesome. If I'm ever in a bad mood all it takes it for "Please Forgive me" or "Babylon" to come on and I'm back in the groove.

I guess he's a moderately sad musical artist in terms of the way his voice/music sounds but I can't help but love it; it really does get me going (on the road to happiness, I mean).

Work is stressful sometimes. Volunteers can be crazy. I wonder what makes some people super nice and congenial and others frustrating a**holes. I don't understand. I'm glad I'm one of the nice ones.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

I can't get no satisfaction

Lately I've wondering a lot about what would truly make me a "satisfied" athlete? Yea, I really have been pondering said thoughts because I feel like it's very important in telling you where your goals should be and how high (or low) your expectations ought to be as well.

At what point can I be truly satisfied with where I am in terms of my fitness and/or abilities? I've always had the nearly overwhelming desire to be the best in whatever I'm doing. Note, it's important to notice that I said "the best at whatever..." as opposed to "the best I can be." I think that distinction is very important.

With almost everything, it's realistic to say that a goal such as that one is simply not possible. In no way can I be the best at all of the things I choose to apply myself to; that's asking too much out of even someone as totally bada** as me! Even so, I've always told myself that I had the potential to be as good as I wanted to be; if I really wanted to be that good I could put the time in and try and reach some of those lofty goals. This isn't just limited to sports, of course. I really, really like being good at video games. I'm a huge dork. There, I said it...but it's really true. I enjoy being good at that almost as much as I enjoy being a good athlete (well, that's an exaggeration but it was to make the point).

I don't limit myself to trying to be AMAZING at one or a few things. But I think that as good as that is (is it though?) it can also lead to a lot of frustration. Because, traditionally, I've had a lack of self-discipline when it comes to reaching certain potentials. For example, I never put in the time to get to the "A" level of bike racing. I said I wanted to, I said I'd be at that level one day...but it never happened. I couldn't make the mental leap to putting in all the hours of training. It's tough, but you have to do it if you want to reach that goal.

So, when will I really be satisfied? Who knows. I'm not sure I ever will be truly happy with how fit I am (or how effiiciently I can off someone in Halo) in all honesty. Because at what point would anyone say: "Alright, that's it. I can never be better than I am right now." That would never happen! You can always find ways to improve yourself and your performances. Always.

At least, you (I) can try...

Friday, September 19, 2008

I'm a wolf in sheep's clothing

Totally new training plan starting Monday. BIG NEWS! I know, it's hard to hold back the excitement that brims and overflows upon reading that. It's exciting for me though, as this is the first time I've both set out a training plan for myself and have a decent plan for the next 3ish months involving my running.

The goal is to follow the "Maffetone Method" created by Dr Maffetone that basically establishes a set period of aerobic base training in which you create a specific heart rate cap that you absolutely do not exceed in any activity. Going by his "180 formula" which is extremely complicated and convoluted, my "cap" is supposed to be 157 (180-age basically, so complicated). Up until reading his philosophy I had planned to set my cap at 150, but 157 is a little bit more reasonable.

Basically, the way it works is pretty simple: do not go over 157. Ever. You're not supposed to lift weights because technically that is an anaerobic activity and any sort of training that isn't aerobic slows down the buildup of aerobic fitness. So basically when I start this I'll be starting at 25 miles a week going 8:30 pace or slower, increasing my weekly mileage by 5 miles every week for three weeks then tailing back for a week and then start increasing again the next week. So, the goal is to get my mileage up pretty high (60-70) by the end of 3-4 months. Also, because I will have been (hopefully) staying in this aerobic range my aerobic capacity will increase dramatically and I'll be running 7:30 pace or thereabouts in the same range I used to be running 8:30-9 minute pace.

It may not sound like much of an increase, but the ability to run for long periods of time and not have a fast rising HR (with this training your body gains the ability to work the same HR for very long periods of time, as opposed to rising gradually over the length of a run/bike/whatever).

I'm excited about it but also scared. It takes a lot of discipline to run that slowly. It's nice because it feels really easy and you're rarely sore after a run but in a certain sense it's kind of embarassing to run that slow if you're used to running fast(er). Biking won't be as much of a problem because my biking HR is usually at least 10 bpm lower if not more on average.

It'll be interesting (for me at least) to see whether I'm able to stick with it and whether I'll see a lot of gain. Crazy right?! Enthralling, I know.

Friday, September 12, 2008


I was thinking today about my inability to commit. Call me weird, call me crazy, or just call me awesome but not only does that certain talent of mine apply to the ladies (although not in the standard sense) it also applies to my sporting activities.

So I thought I'd combine those two things in one amazing set of paragraphs.

Through my life post-puberty, I've had a lot of time trying to figure out what I wanted from a girl. Did I want her to be model hot? Did I want her to be movie-star hot? Did I want her to be really pretty? Well, the short answer was yes...I wanted all of those things. Intelligence doesn't matter at all to me. Just looks. (Sarcasm). The problem for me was figuring out how to 'put myself out there,' if you will. In high school, I thought playing golf would be a big draw. As I drove and putted my way to the heights of golfing skill I thought all of the cute girls watching would be mightly impressed with how well I wielded my clubs. Their reactions would pretty much range anywhere from "Wow, do you know what THAT guy's name is? Because I definitely want that and his number," to "I bet he looks good naked, we should talk to him."

The only problem with these two philosophies (the ONLY one, mind you) was that it always involved the girl coming to me! How against the laws of nature is that? In every boy-girl scenario the main central theme involves something along the lines of "what is the guy going to do to get the girl," but as opposed to my realistic vision of that story it was more like "what great pick-up line will he use or how will he ask her to dance without being awkward or what nice thing will he do that will make her realize he's more than just another guy?'' You know, things like that.

My strategy was flawed from the start.

But what does this have to do with sports? Well, it's simple really. I've never played any meaningful sport for more than four years. I'm not counting pre-high school days because those days were also before I "came of age" so to speak. You can read between the lines. In high school, the sport of the day was golf. I played A LOT of golf for four years, got to be pretty good, and then stopped. Suddenly and immediately. Abruptly and quickly. Crazily and wickedly awesomely. It was epic how suddenly I stopped playing golf, if those previous three sentences didn't convey that truth well enough. I've had a set of really nice golf clubs worth well over $1000 just sitting in various closets for the past 5 years. I just couldn't commit to taking it to the next level.

College brought with it new challenges; one of those being the easiest and fastest way to shave your legs. Cycling was a brand new thing for me, as I had never done any endurance sports before (unless you count golf) and it showed. I was pretty slow at first but over the months and years I got to be a pretty decent cyclist and leg-shaver. I believe my record time was just under 8 minutes with a new razor in the spring of my sophomore year. April 22nd I believe, at about 5:27 in the evening. Not that I keep track of that sort of thing. But again, I couldn't stay committed to cycling. I would go through phases (most notably practically the first half of my junior year) where I would get bored and not ride for long periods of time. I just couldn't take it to the next level. I wanted the fitness to just happen; I didn't want to have to work for it (sound familiar?).

It's hard to intertwine one's "love" life and one's athletic life, but I think that the comparisons I can draw in those two aspects of my own life are almost eerie. I don't really want to do any work, I just want it to happen. But where's the reward if you never work for it? How can you feel any sense of fulfillment if you don't put in the hours of training (and the hours of being nice to a girl, yuck)? You can't, suffice it to say.

Note: this is laced with heavy sarcasm. Take it how you will.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Race reflections and other shizzle

Bank of America, in its infinite wisdom, decided that it would be a cool idea to build a house in 25 hours in celebration of Habitat Charlotte's 25 year anniversary. Admittedly, the only reason I'm sarcastic about it is because I'm completely unexcited to go back to work in 3 hours (it's 11:00 pm) after working a shift from 7am-3:30 pm earlier today. Although, if I were the type of person who consistently saw the glass as half-full and not completely effing empty I'd realize that my two shifts (and the majority of the AmeriCorps and their supervisors...) span what are technically two different work days (Wednesday and Thursday). That makes it sound so much better...

Really though, it's pretty cool to see a Habitat house go up so quickly. The Building on Faith blitz (early September last year, late September this year) is pretty fast but not anywhere close to the speed of this particular build. There are so many tasks going on at once that a lot of times it feels bordering (bordering?) on chaotic. At one point - although I didn't stop to count - there seemed to be at LEAST 60+ people just on that physical construction site. That's not including all of the logistical support people that were scurrying around the tent next door making sure that everyone had a lot of water (it was redonk humid today) and plenty of snacks. Then, in addition to the volunteers there were electrical, plumbing, and HVAC sub-contractors doing their work down inside the house. Plus the insulators, drywall delivery guys, and TV crews and film crews. It all added up to be a huge spectacle. Every body from the neighborhood that drove by rubbernecked like whoa. It was pretty crazy. Everyone was really enthusiastic though, which was nice. Sometimes it's easy to get pretty bored and frustrated when you're surrounded by people who don't seem as though they really want to be there, but all of the volunteers looked really excited and happy to be there working on what is a pretty big-deal build.

The results were finally posted from the tri and in spite of myself I'm mildly to moderately disappointed in my split times. I really think that both runs were long because I'm not as slow as my times suggest.

My splits were (Age group)
(Rank:Run 1 Time:Rank:T1 Time:Rank:Bike Time:Rank:T2 Time: Rank:Run 2 Time)
(Overall ranks were 11, 11, 20, 28, 7)

The first run was at ~6:15 pace, which is very slow for the HR I was averaging. I technically should have been running about 5:50-5:55s. Even allowing for the fact that it was a race and I was more excited - thereby pushing my HR a little higher than a workout - the run was flat and I should be much faster than 6:15s. The bike time wasn't too bad, as my goal was sub 1:05. I know that I physically could have gone, conservatively, 1.5-2 minutes faster without too much more effort. When I get a tri bike that will knock off another 2 minutes at least I'm sure with no extra physical exertion, which is nice. Not too disappointed with the bike, although it's sad because I used to be faster than this. The 2nd run is what really peeved me. A 41:25 10k is 6:39 pace. That's agonizingly slow. I can run that pace in moderate workouts (as a brick even). I think this course was definitely at least .1 long but still, with a goal of 38-39 for the second run I'm none too pleased with a 41:25. The fact that it was the 7th fastest run of all the males though tells me that it is highly likely that the course was long (although one guy did go 35:30ish on it soooo, that's definitely fast).

Going forward with triathlons/duathlons I know that I'm going to do my best to pretty much do a brick on all of my bike rides. Even just a short, easy run of 30 minutes will help me a ton in the effort to get my legs used to the feeling of running after any type of bike ride. I know that the worst part of the race for me was the first 2-3 minutes on the run, and it was all because I didn't do enough bricks in my training.

Still, after a month to a month and a half of true "tri" training I have to consider this race a success. With super-inconsistent running because of my IT issues it really wasn't too bad. I think my early 2009 season "A" goals will be either the New Orleans 70.3 in early April or the Short Course Duathlon Nationals in Richmond, also in early April. I can't really decide whether I want to "concentrate" on longer or shorter distances so as my feelings/strengths become more clear over the winter I'll decide. Very exciting. Super.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Patriots International "Triathlon"

Unfortunately, I can't really call myself a triathlete just yet. Due to the bitch that is hurricanes, this weekend of racing was changed around a good bit. The half ironman was canceled by 11am on Friday so the crew that was going to go up to Williamsburg to race (4 half-ironpeople, 1 international, and 1 sprint) was splintered and broken. I still left late on Friday morning and got to Williamsburg in the late afternoon and met up with Cory, who was kind enough to let me stay in his dorm and reap the rewards of being around an all-star triathlete (I think I asked him about a billion questions this weekend).

We did a short run when I got there on Friday then really didn't do anything else the rest of the day except monitor the status of our race on Sunday. The weather started to get a little sour in the evening but there was no real clue that a hurricane was just beyond the horizon. Saturday rolled around and the weather was definitely not suitable for racing, so at least the organizers canceled the half for good reason. I certainly wouldn't have wanted to race in that weather for 5+ hours, it would have been completely miserable. Heavy, heavy winds of 30+ mph and sometimes driving rain would have made for an excruciating experience.

We went out for a short run, however, which was kind of fun. Running in the heavy wind and rain isn't nearly as bad as biking; it can actually be pretty entertaining. We got back and found out on the race website that the swim had been canceled for both the Sprint and International races. I was slightly disappointed simply because I've put A LOT of time into swimming for a complete beginner in the past specifically to prepare for this race. Cory wasn't too upset because he's crazy good at duathlons (and tris too) and this made it all the more certain that he would win the race.

The folks that were coming up for the sprint decided not to make the trip because the swim was canceled but Sunday rolled around the day was absolutely perfect for racing. Because our race started late, it got a little hot on the 10k but really it was never that bad. We discovered that the organizers had decided to do a 1.8 mile run instead of the swim (Cory and I had been thinking that it would be a 5k) and then on to the normal 24 mile bike and 10k run.

So we set up our transition area, did a quick warm up and went to the start line. I knew I was going to go faster than I really should during the first run but wasn't too worried about it because it was so short that I didn't think I would expend too much energy even if I went really fast. So my first lap (of the 3 loop course) was very fast but then I scaled it back a little bit to keep my heart rate down. Once we finished the 3 loops (totaling 1.8 miles) we had at least a 1/4 mile run to get to the transition area, where I initially went to the wrong rack but soon found my bike and yanked off my flats, threw on my helmet and shoes, and sprinted out of the transition area and mounted my bike.

The bike course was very flat, with only a couple of rollers in the early and late miles (it was a 24 mile out/back course). There were a ton of false flats and almost no wind so looks could be deceiving. I started off with 2 guys who would eventually get out of sight as I wanted to be pretty conservative on the first half of the bike. My HR took a long time to settle down after the run (it stayed in the high 170s, low 180s for about the first 25-30 minutes - normally for that pace it's around 160-165) so I wanted to be careful about that. Another guy passed me before the turnaround but I stayed close to him because I wanted to try and negative split the course. Three of us were pretty much together the rest of the bike course. I was staying conservative until about 2-3 miles to go and then I surged and left those guys behind. I felt pretty good the whole bike but never felt like I got into a "zone" or rhythm that would just eat the miles. I should have surged sooner, more like 5-7 miles out but I just didn't make myself push it hard enough. I'm fairly sure I could have taken 2 minutes or maybe a little more off the bike with not too much extra effort. At least another 1 or 2 if I had a TT/Tri bike too...

So after I left those guys behind I sped up to the dismount area where I did a semi-flying dismount and maintained some good free speed to run back to the transition area and get back on my feet again. Took off the bike shoes, and helmet and slipped my flats back on (Yankz have got to be one of the greatest inventions ever, by the way) and grabbed a couple of sips of gatorade from my bottles and my 2nd powergel before leaving the transition area for the last time.

The run started and I have never felt as bad as I did in the first 1/4 mile. My legs felt like absolute bricks and I was seriously skeptical as to whether I would be able to run the whole way and not walk portions of the 10k. I blew out about a pound of snot, rediscovered the ability to breathe, and managed to settle into a pretty good rhythm once I got on the Colonial Parkway. I wasn't going fast, but I knew that if I just stayed consistent I could have a solid run. I couldn't see anybody in front of me - or behind me - during the first 2 miles of the run. I grabbed water at each of the aid stations but couldn't really get a full sip out of any of the cups and most of it just splashed on my face and down my chest. I kept going steady and finally caught some glimpses of a guy in front of me around mile 2.75. He was about a 1/4 mile in front of me at the turnaround (5k) and I held my pace and managed to catch him with about 1.5-2 miles to go. He was pretty dead in the water and looked as though his goal was just surviving to the finish. My legs started to feel pretty shot around mile 4 and I knew that I needed to end soon. I maintained my pace (still, who knows how) and turned the last corner and saw the finishing straight and finish line 100 yards in front of me. The 'announcer' that was commentating on the race said "Oh who have we here looks like # 579 that's...James Haycraft from Charlotte, NC racing age 24" and that was pretty sweet to hear my name over the loudspeaker (he was doing that for everyone that was coming in, so I'm not really THAT special) and having people cheer for me - not necessarily because they knew me of course but just because they're nice.

It was definitely one of the harder things I've ever done before and if not for a stupid 2 minute penalty I would have ended in 10th place overall. I still won my age group, but the difference between 10th and 12th feels like a lot, even though it isn't. Unfortunately the penalty was something I could have easily prevented just by knowing the rules (I didn't know that if you were riding sort of besides and behind someone that was considered a passing move so you had to complete the 'pass' within 15 seconds but of course, I wasn't passing I was just trying to stay out of his draft and hold the same speed...oh well).

Overall a solid first multi-sport experience. Oh, and Cory won with a 1:47...ridiculous. 2012.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


Was watching "Sicko" tonight, the most recent Michael Moore film and had to wonder about the US health care system, regardless of how biased a viewpoint Moore presents in this (and all) of his films. The only other Moore film I've seen is "Fahrenheit 9/11," which I strongly disliked because of how biased a portrayal his was...but mainly because at the time I disagreed with the message he was trying to get across to his viewers. Now, with "Sicko" I really do have to agree that the US system of medical care is bunk and in need of reform. Beyond that, my views are not more specific, nor do I have any idea what really needs to be done. Still, makes me want to live in the UK even more haha.

In other news, I was 'diagnosed' by a sports therapist with IT Band friction syndrome last Tuesday - something I knew was coming because I had pretty much figured it out by then doing extensive online research. I've been dealing with IT pain for 4 solid weeks now, and consequently my running consistency has suffered. I hit 60 miles 5 weeks ago and it's been downhill since, going ~47, 43, 35, 28, and now a slight increase back up to 35 again after the tightness has subsided slightly. Making sure to stretch very well at least once a day (sometimes two or three times) and using a foam roller and 'the stick' has definitely helped me recover although I'm sure it won't really heal until I take some time off from running (if then) and I won't be doing that until after Patriots, which is now only a short two weeks away.

I swam just over 10,000 meters this week and am definitely feeling it in my arms (and even my legs), something that I think slowed me down a bit in my most recent race on Saturday. I managed to pr by 19 seconds in the 5k but I feel as though I could have gone a good deal faster had my running not been so inconsistent and my swimming not so intense. Oh well, gotta git'r dun.

Monday, August 11, 2008


There are not many things more annoying to me than drivers who slow down and speed up repeatedly when I am around them on the interstate. When I get on a road that isn't too crowded I like to set the cruise control at about 5-7 mph over the speed limit and just get in the right lane and mosey down the road. I've hit stretches where I haven't even had to touch the brakes for over two hours; this isn't at 2am either, it's at fairly normal times during the day. What really irks me though, is when some moron will come flying by me and hop into the right lane then slow down. I move quickly up behind them and consequently have to pull into the left land and pass them, usually while they are talking on their cell phone or eating or doing something similar that does not require you to slow down. I pass them, move back into the right lane and keep going on my cruise control. Then, once they are done with whatever it is that they were doing they decide to speed back up and tailgate me for a bit as if they're expecting me to speed up just to sit them or are affronted by the fact that I passed them and then got in front of their car. As the car passes me the driver/passenger shoot me a look as if to say "what the f*** are you doing in front of me?"

Of course, not everyone does that. But I remember those that do and hate them.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Updates, yay

It's weird being around in Charlotte when I'm not working. It's not just that I feel lazy, it's that I feel as though I'm completely out of the loop. Knowing that as I sleep, exercise, and eat that life is going on much the same for everyone else. People are still working on the houses that I've been working on for the past couple of months; now it's just that I'm not doing it. It's different from a break in school because then you know everyone else is doing similar things. Maybe they've got a job of some sort but the common bond of attending school that you share is no longer present. Work is totally different. Or I guess it's just the 'real world.' I'm glad that I am not fully immersed in the 'real world' yet...although I feel as though it's getting closer.

I'm heading down to New Orleans for a week this Friday and plan on coming back to Charlotte where I'm not really sure what I'll do next as I won't really have that much time to just putz around before Greekfest and the start of work. I also really want to get in some solid blocks of training (12-15 hour weeks) in the month leading up to Patriots. I think I definitely need to concentrate on cycling and swimming because running is not likely to improve as much as those will if I put a decent amount of work into it andddd because my hamstring/right leg/hip whatever is really bothering me a lot right now. I'm really tempted to just take off from running through Sunday to see if I can get back to at least semi-healthy again. Playing softball tonight was difficult because it was bothering me so much. Not really sure what to make of it.

Saturday, July 26, 2008


So I've finally discovered that I really like swimming. It only took me 23 years but it's a great way to get fitness in my upper body without having to lift weights, all the while contributing to aerobic fitness to a degree. I also look dead sexy in jammers.

It does get pretty boring swimming lap after lap of 25 meters but you do what you have to with a triathlon in 6 weeks and a 1500m open water swim in the James River looming over your head. I've also developed a fairly painful spot in my hamstring which leads me to believe that it's either a strain or some sort of pull, but I'm not really sure a pull can result in one tender spot. It seems to dissipate after about 30 minutes of running; not sure whether that is a good or bad thing. It's been bothering me for about a week now, so I'm thinking of taking a week off from running and concentrating on biking/swimming, both of which need some work.

My biking fitness is definitely coming around, however. I feel much, much stronger on the bike now than I did a month or two ago and my ability to power over short climbs and spin my way up longer ones has significantly improved. My recovery time is next to nothing on the bike as well, almost certainly a product of my running fitness.

I really have no idea what to expect from the triathlon in terms of results, but I think I can do the bike in under 1:15 (40k), as I know most of the roads very well and hopefully under :40 on the run (10k). More aggressive estimates would be in about 1:05-1:08 on the bike and :38-:39 on the run. Although I'm not so sure about the run because the Colonial Parkway is not built for fast times (running or biking, for that matter) with it's rolling profile and crappy surface.

I'm pretty excited, but also very, very nervous about the swim. I have no idea how a swim of that length will affect my biking/running. Should be fun.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I signed up for the Patriots International Triathlon on September 7 on Sunday night and just started swimming yesterday. Preparation for a 1500m open water swim will be short but hopefully with my only goal being to simply survive the swim I can get to that point in the month and a half that I have.

Patriots International (Williamsburg, VA)
1500m open water swim in James River
40km bike
10k run on Colonial Parkway (yuck, that's going to suck)

Anyone have a TT/Tri bike I could use? Ha, right.

Friday, July 18, 2008

More work

Tomorrow is the last official work day for the AmeriCorps here (if you've completed your required 1700 hours at that point), but I'll be here for another 2-3 weeks finishing my allotment. Bullshit.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Lots of work left

So I have ~120 hours left to complete in my AmeriCorps service term, which is a lot. That's a good 3 weeks of work right there, not taking any time off and that will mean that I'll be here about a week or two longer than any other of the AmeriCorps. I'm not a slacker, I just made the mistake of not keeping very close track of my hours for the first 4-5 months of work, thereby screwing myself out of a good deal of time. So that kind of sucks, as I'll only get 2-3 weeks off as opposed to a whole month.

I probably won't be racing again until late August at the Greekfest 5k just because I can't justify taking Saturdays off anymore. So that will mean that I'll more than likely miss James K Polk and Blue Points - at least one of which I would have done as a death workout (stay with the leaders as long as possible).

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Wall-e was so awesome

Watched Wall-e tonight and became scared for the human race. If we end up the way humans are portrayed in the movie it will be a very scary thing. Great movie though, really great.

Going to end up being close to 60 miles again this week, although this time around I'm definitely feeling the effects of the increased mileage. Went for an 8 mile run today and felt the worst I have in recent memory. I'm pushing myself beyond what I'm really capable of right now, and it showed today. Hopefully scaling it back down to a slow and easy 45 or so miles next week will help me out a bit. If I manage to scale it back, of course.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Big week

So I almost got 60 miles this past week, but not quite. Oh well, it'll come eventually. I had two tempo runs and two long runs this week, with 25 miles coming in on Saturday and Sunday combined. Felt pretty excellent considering the volume and intensity from this week.

I actually looked online for swim classes/technique videos and the like, which is a step in the direction of triathlons. Just a small step, but it means I'm thinking about it...if only superficially.

Only a month of work left, then it's vacay for a bit. Where should I visit??

Sunday, June 22, 2008


My foot has been feeling progressively better, culminating in a pain-free (other than the fact that I got sore and tired) 14 mile run today, giving me 47 for the week. I tried to start back in easy and I sort of accomplished that by going 3, 5.7, 8.6, 9, 7 (with 5k race), then 14 to steadily rack up time on my feet.

We only have another month in our service commitment, which is pretty crazy considering how quickly it seems to have passed. In some ways I'm quite happy to be staying here another year but I also feel as though I may be missing out on other things.

I really need to make myself study and take the GRE's just to get that out of the way so I can apply to schools in the fall and maybe make some more concrete decisions about what my next step is going to be once AmeriCorps is really over. I'm sure my goals will change repeatedly over the course of the next 13 months but it's nice to at least have semi-plans.

Here's my log entry from the race on Saturday evening:

I decided to do this race about 2 hours before the start time. I went in with pretty low/0 expectations for several reasons. My resting HR was about 4-5 beats above normal (it was at 45/46 this morning), I had 0 running for 10 days and I was coming off a foot injury.

Despite all that, I felt pretty good when the race started. I was surprised by the number of people that initially were in the front group, especially considering it began with a significant hill.

I kind of held back for a while, not really knowing how I would feel at such a high intensity. But I got into a rhythm, my foot felt fine, so I decided to try and go with it this race. Stan and I traded places back and forth for virtually the entire race until at just before mile 3 I surged pretty hard. When I came into view of the clock it ticked over to 17:40 and I just completely lost all motivation to finish hard in the last 100-150 meters. I don't know why, I've never quit on myself like that before in anything. I felt bad about it because at least 2 people passed me while I was jogging to the line (including Stan) like a big wimp. That will never happen again, I should not have slowed up like that.

Oh well...I felt pretty good and my official time of 17:50 is by no means slow on a hilly-ish course. I know I can push myself harder than this though...just need to find a way of doing it.

1 - 5:39
2 - 11:32, 5:53!!!
3 - 17:15, 5:43
3.1 - 17:55, :39.5

Wow Mile 2, you killed my time...congratulations

I got a sweet bowl for winning my age group too.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Reflection Retreat

So today the AmeriCorps got back from a 3 day weekend at the beach in Oak Island, NC. The intent of this required 'retreat' is to train AmeriCorps on 'reflection' and 'life after AmeriCorps.' If it sounds a little ridiculous, it kind of is; if the hope is to introduce AmeriCorps members to thinking about issues related to poverty and housing then I feel like it's a little late for that. Poverty housing and its issues have been in our faces for the past 9+ months so I think I both know about them and am perfectly capable of forming my own opinions on them.

But whatever, we got a free 3 day beach weekend out of it.

The beach was on the eastern coast of NC and having spent more than 99% of my beach time on the sands of Gulf Shores, AL I was pretty weirded out the whole time. Both the beach itself and the beach house 'community' is very different from down by our house. It actually made me really miss home for the first time this year. I was at the beach, but it wasn't really 'the beach' so I wanted to me at my family's house as opposed to this unfamiliar weirdness.

I was also worried about my foot all weekend/this past week so that has kind of sucked. I took my first test run on it today and it felt ok but I kept imagining pains and that freaked me out a bit. I don't want to be scared to run on a healthy foot; then I'm just a wuss. But we'll see after a couple more days whether I can get back up to mileage.

It sucks because I was just starting to bump up over 50 regularly, which was a big mental hurdle for me. I'm also going to start doubling a day or two a week once I'm sure that the foot is fully back. I have no idea when my next race will be; it depends entirely on the health of my foot.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Free runner glory!

While on a bike ride today I saw a guy doing what I assume was free running, except it was a lame-o version that looked absolutely ridiculous and caused me to laugh out loud. He was in front of this church and he'd jump over what might have been a 2 foot ledge and equally high shrubbery (I really just wanted to say shrubbery, except you have to say it like in Monty Python for the full effect) onto the grass lawn beside the stairs with his hands all up in the air celebrating his astonishing feat. He then ran around in front, up the stairs and jumped over the shrubbery again - a jump that was in all seriousness shorter than a hurdle. It was really, really amusing because it seemed like he was a) having a great time and b) really into it; 2 things I don't understand at all. I feel like parkour would only be fun if you're really, really good at it (i.e. the dude from Casino Royale). To be mediocre or below average just makes you look like an idiot because you just run around and crappily jump from one object to another and probably sprain your ankle/wrists/knees multiple times with absolutely nothing to show for it. Practice somewhere no one can see you dude, not on one of the busier streets in Charlotte.


Summer weather is really here; it's redonkulously hot here in Charlotte. It makes running and doing just about anything outside way more taxing. My tan lines are going to get ridiculous working outside in sleeveless shirts but it's important to embrace things like that; it makes me who I am.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


So a lot has happened in the past couple of weeks. I've started a new training plan and traveled down to Biloxi, MS to participate (with all the other Habitat AmeriCorps) in the Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter Work Project.

The week in Biloxi was a lot of fun, albeit frustrating at times. All of the Charlotte AmeriCorps were put on different houses, with a few exceptions. So we all worked with a bunch of strangers who, for the most part, knew less about the construction process than we did. The House Leader on my house in particular seemed to have little knowledge as to the efficient use of people throughout the process of building the house. There were many times in which people were just standing around doing nothing because she did not know how to 'flow' from one stage to another. It seemed as though one thing had to be completed before moving on to something else. But we ended up getting as much (if not more) done than the majority of the other houses in the new construction groups (Biloxi had 10 new houses being built, Gulfport had 20 houses in rehab work, and Pascagoula had 20 homes also starting from scratch).

Our days consistently began before it was light out; I got up every morning except for Tuesday at 5:45am to get on the shuttle to breakfast/work at 6am (on Tuesday they changed the schedule so that we had to be ready to get on the bus by 5am or so, yucky). Breakfast was always a nice segway into the day because those of us from Charlotte that were building in Biloxi could sit and talk before the work day started (there were 4 of us). Work started around 7-7:30 and we worked until lunch which usually ended up being around 12 at the same place we ate breakfast (a sort of staging area for everyone working in Biloxi). When our house leader finally felt as though she had worked all of us hard enough in a day we'd hop back on the shuttles to head back to the hotels for dinner. Usually everyone ended up eating around the same time so the Charlotte crowd got to hang out during this mealtime, which was nice.

We'd usually get back to our hotel rooms between 730-8pm so that left little time for anything (at least for me because I go to bed wicked early) before bedtime. I ran twice on the hotel treadmills while I was down there but it was lame and unsatisfying. Oh well, the week was definitely a lot of fun. It was nice that it was so well organized and supported, but I suppose that comes with the Carters. Everyone involved in Habitat absolutely loves them. It's kind of insane.

Got back last Saturday (May 17th) and had a short week at work due to Memorial day weekend.

This week was probably one of my hardest weeks of training, culminated by a 16 mile trail run (Kings Mtn State Park again) on Sunday to get in 55 miles. Fun stuff. I'll be feeling that these next 2 weeks.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Right Moves for Youth Twilight 5k + JCWP

Friday was my second real 5k of the 'season' and it didn't disappoint. Well, not too much at least.

The start was in downtown Charlotte at 7pm on a Friday night, which can be a very crowded time in Center City. I didn't look around too much for a place to park and just turned into the first garage I saw that was $5 and near the race start. I pull in and punch the ticket machine and the attendant walks over and says "That'll be $5 cash please." I tell him I have no cash and he tells me he'll hold onto my ticket while I park and go get money from an ATM (nice of him). So I park then run around looking for a Wachovia ATM which was about 2 blocks away then run back and give him my money. I then proceed to run to the start to try and pick up my chip but realized it was so crowded it would take foerver to get my chip and I'd run out of time to change my shoes and get ready for the race, plus I had conveniently forgotten my bib and could not remember what number I was.

So, I run back to the garage and navigate my way through one of the more complicated parking garages I've ever seen to get into my car and put away my wallet and water while changing shoes and grabbing my bib. I then run back to the start, get my chip and do a warm up with 2 guys I regularly run with that I ran into walking around the start line area.

So the start time rolls around and we try to make our way up to the front but can only get within 15-20 feet of it, which really pissed me off. There were a bunch of people taking up space that were going to be yogging along at 7-8 minute miles that had no business being up in the first few rows of people. So I fumed a little bit and when the dude shouted go I was stuck behind people for the first 10 feet or so before sprinting around them and getting on the fast train. For the first mile of the race, which was very slow (for the leaders, not me) I was with the lead group of about 5 guys, including me. When the first mile went by in 5:30 I felt pretty comfortable with that pace but knew that if there were any surges or uphills I'd be dropped from that group so I slowed a bit over the next mile and was passed by Megan Hepp (12th @ Olympic Trials, crazy fast). I hung onto her for a little bit then let that go (so sad) and got back into what I hoped was 5:40-5:50 pace (although I don't really have any idea). Only 2 more guys passed me the rest of the race so I did hang onto 10th but I got a terrible side stitch, a result of a hard, hot day at work with little to no water. We roofed a house that day in 80 degree weather and that definitely didn't contribute to helping me get a fast time 3 hours after work. The side stitch lasted for about a mile (2-3ish) and I just couldn't push myself hard enough to stay with the 2 guys that passed me.

All in all it was a good race for me time-wise and place-wise but I know I'm faster than this. My next 5k won't be for several weeks so I'll have some good training under my belt by then.

17:49 (10th overall, 9th Male, 1st 20-24 yrs)

All of the AmeriCorps are leaving to go down to Biloxi to work in the Jimmy Carter Work Project for the next week in about 7 hours (hooray). Hopefully that'll be a good time, not sure how much running I'm going to be able to get in though sadly.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

CPCC Skyline 5k

I feel more satisfied with this race, pretty much exclusively because I was able to hold myself back from going out too fast. A group of maybe 5-7 or so guys were about 50 yards ahead of a group of 4-5 I was in with 2 guys in the middle ground. I wanted to go with the 2 guys in the middle but I knew that they would post times that I simply am not capable of yet so I held back and maintained a steady effort through the first mile. Around mile 1.5 or so there was a short but steep climb and everyone in my group was suddenly gone. I know I didn't hit the hill hard but jeez. So I ended up having to run by myself for the second half of the race, which really sucked. I'm pretty positive I could have gone 10-15 seconds faster just by having people around me or close in front of me. The 2 guys that were ahead of my group were about 30-45 seconds ahead so that wasn't nearly close enough to really egg me on, unfortunately. I never looked behind me because I knew it would piss me off or make me sad, depending on how close or far away the people behind me were. Nobody did actually pass me though and when I got to the mile 3 marker I laid down a pretty hard kick that was the only time during the race where I think I was just completely out of breath. I did the last .1 miles very fast, which was pretty sweet but I know I left something out there on the course. Oh well, next time.

Splits: 1-5:40, 2-11:15, 3- 17:08, 17:45 chip time for 10th place overall.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Race tomorrow

Race tomorrow!

Both excited and nervous, because I've been feeling pretty slow lately. I know that technically I should be faster, if not a good bit faster than I was both at Shamrock (4 miler) and in Athens (5k).

The 5k in Athens was an anomaly I think and I'm not taking my time there seriously because of the odd conditions in which I ran it (got 'lost,' slow start, hilly, etc).

So hopefully tomorrow I will prove to myself that I am, in fact, making improvements. We'll see how it goes.

It's hot here finally (80 today). As much as it can suck at times, I love warm weather. We've had some gorgeous days here in Charlotte this past week.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Boston Marathon

Following today's Boston Marathon has made me insanely jealous. I NEED to do a marathon at some point this year. The bug has completely bit. Right now I'm obviously not in the right shape to start actually training for a marathon that would likely come later this fall but hopefully in the next couple of months I can maintain the decent base I've built these past 3.5 months. The longest run I've done is still just 16 miles (one on the roads and one on trails) so that will certainly need to be increased.

My pipe dream time for a relatively flat marathon would be sub 3; preferably closer to around 2:55ish. That's just under 7min/mi pace.

Running has been going well; I've been alternating higher mileage weeks with 2 lower mileage weeks to make sure that I don't overtrain or injure myself. As I start to get more and more used to running 40+ miles a week I think I'll begin upping my mileage. Right now there are only 5ks and 4 milers on the horizon so 60-70 mile weeks are kind of pointless. I feel pretty fast right now, even when compared to just a month or so ago.

I'm running the CPCC Skyline 5k run this Saturday with the goal of going under 18. I had the same goal before the last 5k in Athens but it was both uncompetitive and hilly. This one will be neither of those, I think. So we'll see how it goes.

Monday, April 7, 2008


Latroy Hawkins sucks.

My big mileage week (for me) from March 24-30 caught up with me this past week, causing me to be tired all the time and pretty sluggish whenever I ran. It was hard to make myself get out there and run and even when I did for the most part I felt pretty sub-par (an expression I've never really understood because it doesn't make any sense given the context it's used in). My training pace was faster than usual last week as well; that I don't understand. I think it's because most of my running was solo and I have a hard time regulating my pace real well when I'm by myself. The weather, on top of all of that, sucked last week so two of my runs were on a treadmill and that always blows.

Luckily today felt fantastic and there were no issues/tweaks/hurts anywhere. This week is looking to be a pretty sweet week of running. Only 3 more weeks until the next race, which feels like forever.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Kings Mountain National Military Park run

Now is when I really regret not having cable TV in my life, as the real start of opening season has dawned. I guess it's just something I'll have to get used to, alas.

Went on a long, long trail run today down on the North/South Carolina border (about 40 minutes south of Charlotte) in Kings Mountain National Military Park on their ~16 mile trail loop. The drive down was replete with music to get me pumped up for a run I thought would kill me and a plethora of cop cars in the last 2-3 miles of the drive that got my sufficiently scared to slow down. It was much colder today than it's been this past week and I ended up starting the run with a beanie (overkill), gloves, under armor, long sleeve running technical shirt (overkill), and 2 hand held water bottles (something that was so weird for me, carrying shit in my hands while running). I packed a nutri-grain bar away in between my skin and my under armor, hoping that the packaging wouldn't rub me the wrong way and still be edible in about 2 hours (I had been under the impression that the 16 mile run would take 3+ hours).

There was a group of 7 of us gathered in the Welcome Center parking lot getting ready to go for an epic trail run. We started off and it ended up being me, Todd (a local house-flipper) and Tim (an ultrarunner that organizes events like races and these runs every Sunday) followed about 5-10 minutes back by Ned (works for a non-profit in South Carolina).

We started out a pretty swift sub 7 minute pace for the first hour or so then slowed down at about mile 8-10 to a more pedestrian (and manageable) 8+ minutes per mile. The trails got much hillier in the second half of the run; walking up some of the steeper stuff proved more efficient than trying to waste energy by running up the inclines.

Finishing 16 miles in just over 2 hours (2:12) was somewhat disappointing but then I realized that it was actually pretty fast given that a) it was my longest run ever and 2) it was run on some difficult trails and 3) I never stopped my watch for the 3 breaks we took that lasted a total of about 5-7 minutes I would guess. So I'm pretty happy with that pace.

There's a 22 mile run next week that I am contemplating attending...22 is a long ass way.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Inaugural Race for the Chase 5k

The "Inaugural Race for the Chase 5k" in Athens was a little chilly but I managed to get 1st in a race that sadly only featured 150 entrants. I believe there were only 2 guys in their twenties (including myself) that came to race, which is understandable in such a college town. Who in their right minds, within the ages of 18-24 would be up at 7am on a Saturday morning?

The race started off pretty slowly, with a group of about 5 guys off the front immediately. Everyone except for the guy I was behind sounded like they were breathing quite hard. For about a mile I stayed with the guy who eventually came in second. The first big hill came up and I took the lead, making sure I kept my strides short and my breathing controlled. I kept up my 'speedy' pace for the next mile and passed the 2 mile marker at ~11:40 or thereabouts. So my pacing was exactly where I wanted it to be for a 5k: around 5:40 for the first 2 miles-ish and then cranking it up in the last mile+.

So things were going smoothly and I was just cruising along when I managed to turn right as opposed to going straight like I was supposed to. I went about 50-60 yards the wrong way before I heard the shouts of "You were supposed to go straight!" So I angrily turned around and got back on the right track, all the while cursing under my breath (hopefully...). The guy behind me, who I had managed to put about 30-40 seconds on in about a mile to a mile and a half had caught up until he was only about 30-40 yards behind me. I was pissed but still managed to hold on to the lead spot. He kicked at the end to make up some more time on me but I knew he wasn't going to catch me so I didn't speed up at all. I felt like I had a good bit of juice left in me at pretty much all times during the race; I never felt as though I was going all-out.

Kat and Jeremy were nice enough to wake up early to take pictures and cheer me on, even though as opposed to shouting that I went the wrong way they just said "What an idiot!" Typical. Not a bad race; I PR'd by a little over a minute but the hilly nature of the course and my wrong turn didn't help much. I still think that on a flat course I can go sub 18. That did not happen today, sadly. Next time...

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Red Sox

So I retract what I said previously. I now know more about the situation and have decided that the Red Sox are not a bunch of d-bags (at least from this recent event). They still are d-bags in general but managed to stand up for what is right this time.

I'm running a 5k in Athens on Saturday morning. I have no idea what the course is like, but I'm going sub 18. Depending on how I feel, maybe close to 17:30.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Regular Season

It's sooo close!!! I've been freaking out about how badly I need baseball season to start and it's almost here!!

Also, I like how the Red Sox coaches were complaining about not getting the money they were 'promised' to go to Japan (as a stipend) at virtually the same time the majority of Yankee regulars were playing the Virginia Tech baseball team in a game to benefit those hurt or touched by the tragedy that occurred there last year. Way to go, Sox.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Shamrock 4 Miler

My original goal when I signed up for this race was to break 24:00, which I actually did manage to do. Over the past week or so however, my expectations raised and I was hoping I could snap 23:00. I think that I could have but I went out way too fast. Oh well.

The start was crowded with both runners and baby joggers and I got stuck behind 2 baby joggers right when the gun sounded the start of the race. That pissed me off a little bit because they should have been off in a separate staging location or something of that sort. They take up too much space to intermingle with the runners. So that made me angry right at the start, not a good thing.

I got on the heels of Mike Moran, a New Balance rep here in Charlotte that I ran with last Wednesday who I knew raced fairly conservatively in the first half of the race - something that was part of my plan - with the hopes of either just staying with him (he's fast) or maybe even passing him in the second half sometime. I felt like I was pushing it really hard right from the start and was on the edge of being above 95% and wasn't sure why I was so strained because I thought I was running my goal pace of 5:40. No, I was not. We hit the first mile marker and the sign clicked onto 5:15 right as we passed it. I actually said "F***" out loud (although not loudly) and immediately slowed down to what I thought was around 5:45ish pace.

From there to the 2 mile marker I felt pretty solid. I felt like I still had an extra gear if I really needed it for the end and I was never breathing super hard (don't get me wrong; it hurt but it was manageable hurt). The course then proceeded to kick my ass with what seemed like about a quarter to half mile hill that just completely sapped my legs. 2 guys passed me and it took me a couple of seconds to recover at the top. I got back into a rhythm and stayed about 20-30 yards behind a guy who if someone asked me I would never say looked fast but...he apparently was. Not that many people were at the finish by the time I got there so it was a somewhat lame hooray moment.

No aches or pains though, just felt slow at points. My 5k split was right around 17:30ish just off the top of my head. I think sub 17 is totally possible on a 5k. This course was, dare I say it, rolling. It had some decent ups and downs.

I also just found out from looking at the results page that they gave me the 3rd place age group trophy (20-24) when I should have gotten 2nd. Those bastards!

Thursday, March 13, 2008


Thursdays are never fun because you feel like it should be Friday but Fridays aren't even real Fridays for us since we work Saturdays so that basically makes Thursdays useless. No Thursday night partying like back in my glory days in college so long ago. So sad

Monday, March 10, 2008

Last week

My training log for last week was pretty ridiculous.

Monday - 8 mile recovery run in :57

Tuesday - 4.5 Treadmill Progression (5 minutes @ 7:30, 5 @ 7:00, 5 @ 6:30, 5 @ 6:00, 3 @ 5:30. Recovered before last one)

Wednesday - 7 mile recovery run in :51

Thursday - 4 mile warmup @ ~7:15, 4 miles @ 5:42, cooldown

Friday - Mile repeats: 25 min warmup, 3 X Miles (5:46, 5:42, 5:39), cooldown

Saturday - Off

Sunday - 12 miles in 1:27

I had NO idea how much the workouts would take out of me, especially the Thurs/Fri ones. I was hoping to do 4 mile repeats but I honestly just couldn't make myself do it. My legs were so dead and it was extremely difficult to get into any sort of rhythm on any of the miles.

Even with the rest day Saturday my legs still felt completely dead Sunday. No soreness, just a ridiculous lack of energy in them. By mile 10-11 I was having a hard time getting up hills on the trail. Even though I felt completely dead I was still managed to average a 7:19 pace, which I was very surprised to find out about post-run. I felt like I was hitting 9 minute miles on my last loop.

That was definitely the hardest week of running I've had so far and with the race this Saturday I'm trying to makedamnsure I toe the line completely fresh. I'll probably only hit 30 or so miles this week (if that) to be positive of my levels of freshness.

Once this race is over I'm going to start going above 50 miles/week to try and get in shape for some longer races. I still have a 5k scheduled for late April but I'm not going to train specifically for that. I want that to basically end up being a speed workout for that week. I'll taper but not in the sense that I'm tapering for this race. Of course, I say all that now but who knows how I'll feel about it in a month?

My long term running goals for this year are to do at least one half marathon this summer and a marathon later on in the year (Oct-Dec). If I do end up moving to Philadelphia I'd really like to try and get in on the Philly Marathon. All of this depends on so many factors that it's hard to even fathom what kind of shape I'll be in this fall, let alone this summer.

I'm going to start try and incorporating some mountain biking into my training to make sure that I'm not completely 100% running all the time. Duathlons and triathlons are also in the mix, but I'm really not in cycling shape at all. Mountain biking duathlons would be awesome if I could manage to find any or get in the mood for one.

Weather is awesome.