"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -- WOW-- What a Ride!"

Thursday, September 27, 2012

So, what's up?

So, what's been going on running-wise?

For me, I've been preparing for a solo attempt at a marathon in November.  I have several ideas in mind as to the course, but haven't settled on one just yet.  Out and back would be OK, but not ideal since I'll have to figure out how to stash supplies along the way without having an animal steal them or have the water freeze.  A loop course would be better since I could stash supplies in my car and use it as an aid station.

My training plan for the marathon attempt is pretty simple:  Run!  Mas!  That's it.  Nothing fancy.  I'll save the more advanced stuff for next year when I'm preparing for an ultra attempt.

I'll spare you the boring details, but I am on track to break 200 miles in September.  It will be a personal best month for me.  Woo Hoo!  It also means I am wearing out shoes faster.  Boo!

Fall is most definitely here.  The colors are brilliant.  Too bad when I am running in the dark in the morning I can't see them.  The stars are pretty though.  Venus is easy to pick out in the eastern sky.

The 2012 racing season is almost over for me.  There's a half marathon coming up in October and a 5K in November and then that's it until next spring.  I've started penciling out plans for 2013, but nothing firm yet.  It's looking like I will be spending a lot of time in Michigan's Upper Peninsula next summer.  There's a trail 50K, a trail marathon and a trail 25K up there that I want to run.  We'll see how it all works out.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Mud Creek Crawl - Trail 10K - Race Report

Today my family and I ran at the Mud Creek Crawl (one of Runners World's top 13 out-of-the-way races).  It's not one of those new fangled mud and obstacle events.  It's a real, live trail race.  My wife and daughters ran the 5K and I ran the 10K.  The races are held at the Pine Haven Recreation Area near Sanford, MI along the banks of the Mud Creek (hence the name).

The trails are a nice mix of dirt, packed sand, gravel and tree roots.  There were enough hills to make things interesting, but not so much to really beat a person down.  It had rained Friday night, but the trails were in great shape today.  Just a few muddy spots.

The weather was cool and sunny, maybe about 55 degrees at start time.  It was a perfect morning for running.  What a difference from two weeks ago.

Since my entire family was involved in this event as participants we have no pictures.  Sorry.

We got up at O-dark-thirty, loaded the kids in the car and headed off for the race site.  Race time was at 9:30, but the info said to be there early for check in and body measurements.  Apparently they don't use the traditional age groupings to determine awards.  People are scored based on a combination of age and body type.  So, we got there at 8 and were almost the first people there.  We got through the check in process quickly.  We found out the body fat measuring equipment didn't know how to handle a skinny 10 year old and a skinny 6 year old.  I, on the other hand, could probably do with a little less ice cream :-)  Once we were though the check in process we went back to our car to get warm and hang out.  Good thing we got there early because by the time we were done more people had arrive and the line to check in was pretty long.

So, on to the start.  For the first 3 km I ran with my 10 year old.  This made me happy.

She is really improving as a runner.  We're still working on pacing, but she'll get there.  She told me her goal was 45 minutes and she ended up finishing in 37 minutes.  She did great.  I think it finally clicked for her that to go faster, she needs to go slower.

After the 3 km marker the 10K and 5K runners split.  I quickly caught and passed one lady, but then I was alone.
I was by myself for only a mile or so, but it seemed to go on forever.  It's much more difficult to stay in a racing frame of mind when there's no one around me.  I tend to slip into my normal weekend long trail run state of mind.  I was spending time admiring the trees, looking at the creek, listening to birds, etc.  Every so often I would look at my watch and realize I had slowed way down and be like "Oh Crap!" and speed up again.

Then I saw them.  The pack.  Woot!  I started working my way up through the pack.  I don't know how many people I passed, but it put me from DFL to the front of the midpack.  This section of the course was my favorite.  It was like a roller coaster with all the up and down and sharp curves.  Beautiful.  I can't wait to go back there and run those trails again.

Then it was over.  One last climb to the finish chute (evil RD! hahaha) and it was over.  I finished in 1:05 which I was more than happy with.  It was my first ever trail 10K and the first 3 km I was running with my daughter.  I really didn't treat it as a goal race or a PR effort.

After I finished I found out my 6 year old daughter had finished her first 5K ever with my wife.  She was pretty excited.  She even got mud on her legs and was pretty stoked about that.  It made her feel more like an official trail runner.  LOL!  Both daughters are already bugging me about doing another trail race.  I think that's a good sign.

No shirts for this race (which is fine with me) but we did get really cool aluminum water bottles.  My wife and 6 year old chose some cool hats with pink "Mud Creek Crawl" logos.  The event was well organized and I appreciated the reasonable cost in this age of spiraling race entrance fees.  If it fits my schedule next year, we'll be back.  I love quirky smaller events like this.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

North Country Run Half Marathon

Today I ran the North Country Run Half Marathon.  It a trail event held on the Big M trails in Manistee National Forest near Wellston, MI.  I don't have a mile-by-mile race report, but I do have some observations from the day:

  • It was hot.
  • Aid stations were awesome.  The volunteers really make then rock.
  • There are a lot of hills on this half marathon course.  Whew!
  • Did I mention it was hot today?
  • I love trail running and racing.
My goal for the day was 2:30, which would have been about a 15 minute improvement over last year.  Well, I was on track though about mile 9 to hit my goal.  Then the wheels fell off.  I started really feeling the heat.  It's been cool here for the last 4 weeks or so, so I didn't get in much in the way of heat acclimation prior to the race.  I started cramping all over and just really not feeling good.  By the amount of people I was passing, I wasn't the only one struggling in the heat.  The last couple of miles it looked like everyone was having a hard time.  Lots of walking going on.  I ended up finishing at 2:45.  Same as last year, but considering it was 15-20 degrees warmer than last year I'm fine with it.  I know I did my best out there today.  A new PR just wasn't going to happen today.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Slow Ride

Went out for some miles on the forest single track this afternoon.  Whoa.  90-ish degrees and humid.  I didn't realize that northern Michigan got transplanted to the gulf coast.  So, it ended up being a slow ride for sure.  So, I just took it easy.  Even stopped in a couple of shady spots that were catching a nice breeze to cool off a little.  The way sweat was dripping off of me, evaporative cooling was not working very efficiently.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Big M: North Country Run Course Preview

This isn't really part of the trail tour series, but will be pic heavy.  This morning I ran on the trails at Big M as part of the North Country Run course preview.  I ran the half marathon course.  The marathon and ultra loop  has similar terrain but maybe a little flatter.  Along the way I took some pics to share with people I know are running the race at the end of August, but couldn't make it up for today's run.  I hope these give you a sense of the terrain and trail conditions.  Conditions today were very similar to what we may see at the end of August.

And so it begins...

In some places passing will be difficult.
In other places, the passing won't be so difficult.  The pine needles on the trail make a wonderful surface to run on.
The terrain is kind of rolling

Trail marker.  During the race, the trail will be marked with colored flags.
On top of a dune.  The breeze was really nice at the top.
LOL!  This was at the top of probably the mildest descent all day.
The course flattens out at the end.  Time to drop the hammer and go.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

May Reflections

From my May training log:

Total miles:  179.1 (a new personal best!)
Hottest run:  85 degrees (I nearly passed out when I got home)
Coldest run:  45 degrees
Longest run:  13.3 miles
Shortest run:  3.1 miles
Average run:  7.5 miles

May was rough the first couple of weeks as I was just coming out of tax season and ramping my miles back up.  Those first couple of long runs were hard.  By the end of the month the long runs weren't so bad and I was feeling good again.  Now, in June, I'm feeling like I need to step up my miles a little bit again.  The last 4 weeks have been at about 40 miles.  The time has come to bump that up to about 45.  I also want to add some speedwork to be quicker on the trails.  Not formal track speedwork, but some fartlek sessions on the trails.  My legs need to know it's OK to turnover quicker in the woods.

Next up on the race calendar in a trail half marathon at the end of August.  Plenty of time to work on getting faster and stronger before then.

Now that we're in the summer season I just want to encourage everyone to be careful out there.  Use sunscreen liberally and hydrate well.  Check for ticks if you've been in the woods.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Yankee Springs Trail Half Marathon Race Report

Where:  Yankee Springs State Recreation Area, Michigan
When:  Saturday, June 2, 2012
What:  Trail Half Marathon

No pictures.  Sorry.  I was too busy to take any.

On Saturday I ran the trail half marathon at Yankee Springs.  This is a smaller event with maybe around 100 participants in the half marathon.  I enjoy trail racing anyway for it's more relaxed atmosphere.  A small trail race was even better.

I experienced a couple of firsts for this race:

  • First time ever I've been early for a packet pick-up.  The race info said packet pick up on Friday night 5 p.m. - 8 p.m.  So, I showed up a little after 5 p.m. figuring a bunch of people would be there already.  Nope.  It hadn't even started yet.  Yep, this was a laid back event.
  • The next first was that I was assigned #1 for my bib.  Awesome!  It was only because I was the first one to register way back when registration opened up.  It was still something to live up to.  Fortunately no one seemed too worried about it and it did start a few conversations.

Saturday morning the half marathon was to start at 7:00 a.m.  It rained most of the day Friday and into Friday night.  Sometime over night the rain stopped.  Yay!  Saturday morning when I left to drive to the race site it was about 45 degrees.  Boo.  Considering the day of rain prior to the race the trails were in very good shape.  All the rain even helped to pack down the sandy spots to make them a bit easier to run through.

I don't remember each mile and there weren't any mile markers anyway.  I did use my Garmin but being under a thick tree canopy most of the time makes it's measurements suspect.  I do have some general impressions from certain segments of the race:

Miles 1-4:  I wasn't feeling great.  I was getting my brain ready to accept a less than stellar day.  We came up to the first aid station at mile four.  Since that seemed really early to me I just kept on trucking and continued down the trail.  It was here that I said goodbye to the conga line I had been a part of and set off on my own.

Miles 5-10:  I found a port-a-bush, did some business and took off down the trail.  Suddenly I was feeling 100% better.  There was about 2 miles where I was by myself.  It felt like just another Saturday morning long run on the trails.  I was enjoying the bird song and looking around at the beautiful surroundings.  Just before the next aid station at around mile 6.5 or so I caught up to some people and followed them into the aid station.  I stopped just long enough to dump some water into my handheld and took off ahead of the people I followed in.  Now I was feeling great and cruising.  I started catching and passing people.

Miles 10-13 - Got to the last aid station at mile 10 following a couple of guys that I ended up following the rest of the way.  I passed right through the aid station and they only slowed down long enough to grab something.  In the last half mile I passed these guys, but one of them managed to sprint by me right at the finish chute.  It was all good.  I didn't have a sprint left in me at that point.

My finish time was 2:34.  I was shooting for 2:30, but considering how bad the first 4 miles felt, I was happy with it.  It was a fun event, well organized and really had that trail running vibe to it.  I'll most likely run it again next year.

What did I learn?

  • Short, quick, light steps are critical to efficiently eat up the trail.
  • I need to work on my hill climbing.  That cost me more time than anywhere else on the trail.
  • In something longer than a 10K, not feeling well isn't the end of the day.  At some point that feeling may pass and a great day can still be salvaged.
  • I have a long way to go to be ready to take on a 50K.  I want to run one in the fall of 2013, but we'll see if I can get there by then.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Stride for Strive 5K Race Report

Monday, May 28, 2012 I ran the Stride for Strive 5K in Cadillac, MI with my 10 year old daughter.  For me it was more about just spending some quality time with her and helping her do her best.

All ready to go.

While we were hanging out waiting for the start I asked her what her goal was.  She told me 35 minutes or less.  I told she could do it, but we were going to have to work hard.

The weather was sunny and warm.  Temps were in the low 70's with a light breeze.  Not too bad.  A little warmer than I like for race day, but manageable.

At 8:30 we lined up and then the pack started to move.  We were off.  Through the first mile my daughter set a comfortable pace.  We had to walk some due to runner traffic.  In the second mile the traffic thinned out a bit and she sped up.  She wanted to hit the water stop at 1.5 miles, so we did.  After some water, she was off again.  In the third mile she looked at the Garmin and said she thought she could maybe make it in 33 minutes.  I just kept telling her she was doing great and to keep going.  Towards the end she was getting tired.  In the last .5 mile or so she took a couple of walk breaks but still finished in 33:56.  Awesome!  She crushed her goal.  That was her 4th 5K and her fastest yet, so a new PB.  Woot!

She's already looking forward to her next 5K.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Summer has Arrived

Summer arrived yesterday.  It pulled up in an old, rusty Plymouth and crashed on my couch.  High's in the 80's all weekend with more to come next week.  Good thing summer's friend humidity hasn't made it back from it's winter home in Pensacola just yet.  That will give me some time to acclimate to one variable at a time.

So, what are some of your heat strategies?  I try to up my electrolytes and make sure I stay well hydrated during the day.  I also start carrying water whenever I'm going to be out more than about an hour.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Getting In Touch With My Inner Caveman

After listening to this podcast:


I decided to incorporate more of the paleo aspects into my diet and work on reducing refined sugars and flours.  I want to make myself more efficient as a runner and increasing my aerobic capacity will help do that.  For me it was a bit of a paradigm shift to think about increasing aerobic capacity not just in terms of exercise, but also in terms of diet and stress factors in my life.  Reducing carbs in my diet from refined sugars and flours will help on the diet end of things.  I won't be a pure caveman, but I will be working some of the ideas into my daily life.

Something else I need to do is slow down my long, slow distance run a little.  I've been running them a bit too fast which takes me into an anaerobic state which is exactly where I don't want to be.  I want to become a lean, mean, fat burning machine.

Reducing stressors in my life will be more difficult.  We all have work to get done, kids to take care of, places to go, deadlines to meet, etc.  The best I can do is try to manage it better so things don't stress me out.

So, what does a plate look like for me?  Last night for dinner was stir fried chicken and vegetables.  We went out for Chinese to celebrate Mother's Day.  I avoided the rice, eggroll and crab rangoon.  Lunch today was a cheese omelette and some beef jerky.  Breakfast was my normal steel cut oats with a banana.  Not paleo, but I like my oats.  I just want to get away from a diet dominated by carbs.  I also won't be taking any Gu or Gatorade with me.  Just water.  Dinner tonight will be fish and steamed vegetables.  No rice, pasta or potatoes.


Checking back after today's 13 miler.  Dinner ended up being tuna + avocado with steamed veggies.  Yum.  Run went OK other than around mile 10 my legs just didn't want to go anymore.  I kept going, slowly, and by mile 12 the feeling passed and I was OK again.  Weird.  I think it's directly related to downing a Gu at mile 6.5.  The Gu spiked my sugar, then the sugar crashed, then normalized.  I'll try the long run next week without the Gu and see what happens.

It's still too early to say if I feel any different with reduced carbs.  In a couple of weeks hopefully I'll have some meaningful observations.  For now all I can say is that everything I want is high in refined sugars.  I'm sure that feeling will pass with time and then ice cream, pizza, etc will truly be the once in awhile treat it's supposed to be.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Spring Trails

OK, now that my brain is recovering from tax season I starting to get back into the swing of things.  The virtual trail tour hasn't hit the road yet, but I have been hitting my "home" trail and taking some pics along the way.

This old tree stump looks like a dragon head.  It's hard to see, but it even has a snaggle tooth.

Heading uphill.  Again.  Hills make us stronger, right?

Can't wait until the leaves come out and this turns into a tunnel.
Almost got passed by this guy.  It was tough, but I managed to hold him off.
Hard to see, but the area just beyond the trees has been logged off :-(

Yeah, I know people can sell their timber if they want to and I'm OK with that.  Logging has been and continues to be a valuable part of the local economy.  It was just such a stark contrast from a week ago to go from forest to clear land.  Once the jack pines take hold in the cleared land it will become good habitat for Kirtland Warblers.  I'm sorry to see the trees go, but I'm also excited to see the forest renew itself.

Friday, May 4, 2012

April Review

April is in the history books and true to my accountant nature I closed the books.  Here it is by the numbers:

Total miles run:  103.4
Average run:  6.5 miles
Longest run:  12.3 miles
Shortest run:  2.5 miles
Warmest run:  72 degrees
Coldest run:  27 degrees

An improvement over March, which is good.  May has started out well with an average run length of 6.4 miles already.

Run safely friends!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


With the ending of the tax filing season today I am breathing a big sigh of relief.  For the last six weeks its been lots of work, too much stress eating, and not enough running.  Last week I ran 5 days for the first time in a month.  It was hard work, but felt great.  Thankfully, I don't seem to have lost too much fitness and should be back up to where I want to be in no time.

So, what has the running been like lately?  Here it is by the numbers:

Miles run:  94.0
Warmest run:  78 degrees
Coldest run:  5 degrees
Longest run:  10.9 miles
Shortest run:  3 miles
Average run:  5.9 miles

Yes, I cut way back due to workload, to make room for family time, some minor injuries and just because I was exhausted.  April isn't exactly getting started with a bang with a 5.3 mile average so far, but I am building back up.

What's coming up?  A trail half marathon on June 2nd.  It should be a blast.

Now, to get off my rear and get out there...

Friday, March 16, 2012

An update in handy bullet form:

  • A ligament (or ligaments) in my left knee is upset with me.  I think I stepped wrong or something the other night and twisted or pulled that area which made the ligament not happy.  I've been resting it for a couple of days.  Tonight it seems better and I may give it a try tomorrow sometime.  It really doesn't feel like a long term injury.  It feels like I strained or pulled something and a little rest should have me back in business real soon.
  • I am a CPA by trade which means this time of year I am really busy at work.  That means less time for running if I want to eat, sleep and/or see my family.  So, I cut my mileage back a bit for the month of March.  Basically I just try to run at a maintenance level for now.  In April I'll pick things back up.
  • We went straight from deep winter to summer.  A couple of weeks ago I was running in snow and single digit wind chills.  This week it's been sunshine and 70 degrees.  Crazy.  Of course, all the snow melted.  Rapidly.  Some of our daffodils and tulips are beginning to sprout.  The canes on the rose bushes are turning green.  I just hope we don't get a hard freeze that kills off all the flowers this spring.
  • The trails are open to me again which means that as soon as the ligament in my knee calms down, I can resume the virtual trail tours.  I have some new to me destinations planned for this year that I'm really looking forward to sharing with you all.
  • Have I mentioned that I really like ice cream?

Saturday, February 25, 2012

What is Strong?

Strong is what's left after we've used up all the weak.

I love this kind of stuff.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Cutting Back and New Kicks

This past week was a cutback week for me.  That meant I cut my running by about 25% from normal.  Normally I'm not a big fan of cutback weeks, but I do throw one in occasionally just because it gives my body a chance to more fully recover.  This past week however was pretty awesome:

Rested and hit the NordicTrac for about 30 minutes while watching hockey.

Ran 5 miles.  There were some snow flurries floating around in my headlamp beam.

New kicks arrived!  I ordered a pair of Saucony Peregrine shoes for use this spring/summer on the trails.

 Of course I had to try them on.  Out of the box they are the most comfortable shoes in my rotation.  I can't wait to start logging some miles in them.  I also got out and ran 6.4 miles (in different shoes) under a clear, starry sky.

Got out and ran 4.5 miles in my new Peregrines.  Because of their lower drop (4mm), I wanted to try them on a shorter run.  I like them a lot already.  I can see we are going to get along really well once we get back on the trails.  Just have to wait for the ski trails to melt out which takes longer in the shade of the forest than it does in my sunny yard.

Really rested.  Helped my wife out with some chores around the house.

4.8 miles on a cloudy afternoon.  It was so gray it hard to tell if it was 10 a.m. or 5 p.m.  It all looked the same.  In the flat light like that it's hard to see the bumps and dips along the road.  It all just blends into the white ground and gray sky.  Skiers will be very familiar with this phenomenon.

An awesome 10.8 mile run at sunset.  It was one of those runs that just seemed effortless.  I could have just gone on forever.  My overall pace ended up being about the same as the half marathon I ran in last fall and it felt easier.  I would have been even faster if it wasn't for some intermittent GI upset towards the end.  I wasn't ill or anything.  My system was just telling me my choice of pre-run fuel (pizza) wasn't the best idea ever.

Have I mentioned I'm a bit of a nerd?  Something I enjoy doing before heading out for an evening run is checking to see which planets and constellations are prominent and then looking for them while I'm out there.  Google Chrome has a cool app called Planetarium that will show you what the sky looks like from your location at any time of day.  I check that and know exactly where to look for various things.  How cool is that?  Too often I end up trucking along, listening to a podcast, looking for Orion or the Pleiades and end up totally forgetting to do my fartleks or stride intervals.  Oops!

What is something you enjoy doing on your runs?  Bird watching?  Looking for specific plants and flowers?  People watching?  Feel free to discuss in the comments.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Week in Review, 2/6 - 2/12

My week in a tidy, summarized format:

Rest day.  Didn't even do any cross training.  Just rested.

7.1 miles.  15 degrees.  Clear sky.  Big, bright moon.  Orion was my constant companion.

8 miles.  15 degrees.  Clear sky.  Huge full moon rising over the eastern horizon while I ran.  The ice on the lake heaved and cracked as I ran along edge.  It sounded like a gunshot in the quiet stillness of the night.

Rested.  Just wasn't feeling great.  A good night's sleep had me feeling 100% better the next day.

6.4 miles.  Snow and -5 degrees.  Just concentrated on busting through about 4 inches of new snow.  The wind was brutal.  Some drifting in the more open areas.

6.2 miles.  Flurries and 4 degrees.  Windy and drifting snow.  Got the miles in and that's about it.

12.2 miles.  Sunny and 15 degrees.  Bright sunshine makes a huge difference in how I feel during a run.  Especially in the middle of winter.  It's dark and cloudy here so much in the winter that any sun is welcome right now.  Loaded up some podcasts from Trail Runner Nation to keep me company on my run.

Total miles for the week worked out to 39.9.  What is it with me finishing .1 miles short of a round number lately? Crazy.

I've found for my long runs on roads, I enjoy listening to podcasts while I'm out there.  What are some of your favorites?  Share them in the comments below.

Lately I've been enjoying  Trail Runner Nation  and UltraRunner Podcast.  It's fun listening to knowledgeable folks discuss running while I'm running.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Running With La Nina

Wow, the weather over the last week or so has been absolutely fantastic for this time of year.  The temps during my last five runs have been 25, 35, 30, 26, and 33.  All of those are above zero.  Amazing for late January/early February.  Most of our snow is gone.  We've actually had several days of sunshine.  I know the ski resorts and snowmobilers are hating this weather, but I'm loving it.  It's so much more pleasant to head out when it's not -5 and blowing snow.

Last week was 41.9 miles.  Had I known I was so close to 42 I would have run around the block one more time or something.  Oh well.  That's life, eh?  Actually, that was a personal best for me for weekly mileage, so I'm really happy about that.

Some highlights from the past week were the waxing moon.  It was nice and bright in the sky in the evening.  On Saturday afternoon there were snowmobiles drag racing on the ice.  Those things are fast!  It wasn't just a couple of Bubbas out there fooling around either.  These were real racing teams actually racing.  My running route took me around the back of the pit area and there is more to drag racing snowmobiles than first meets the eye.

Another highlight is that I hit my goal weight of 150 pounds.  Hooray!  I haven't seen that weight since I was a freshman in high school.  The challenge now is to effectively maintain without going too low or too high.  Plus or minus a pound or two is fine.  More than that will be a problem.

Looking forward I plan to continue working on my base through February.  Sometime in March I'm hoping the snow is gone from the trails and I can get back into the woods.  If not, I will start incorporating some hill repeats into my running routine.  While I am a midpacker when it comes to trail racing, I intend to be a front of the midpacker and to do that I need to work on running hills efficiently.

Hope you all are having a great week!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

January by the Numbers

Last night I did my final run for January, 2012.  It was a nice finish to what has been a really good running month.  Even the weather was good with temps in the mid-30's and a nice waxing moon high in the sky.

So, how did January go?

Total miles run:  168.8 miles
Warmest run:  33 degrees Fahrenheit
Coldest run:  -5 degrees Fahrenheit
Longest run:  13 miles
Shortest run:  5 miles
Average distance run:  8 miles

The month of January is a personal best for me as far as total miles.  A year ago I never saw myself basically running a half marathon on my long run days.  Now, it's a weekly thing.  For February the plan is to maintain the current mileage.  I want to do about four more long runs at the 13 mile distance before trying to bump it up.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Rain + Cold = ??

What do you get when you combine rain and then cold?

Time to break out the microspikes.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Hello Winter!

Dear Winter,

Nice of you to show up finally.  You were only a few weeks late.  Please don't get too comfortable.  Spring is coming in March and you will need to be gone by then.

Yeah, so winter finally showed up with all the snow and cold those of us in northern climes expect.  To top it off this is my busiest time at work.  It has been a struggle figuring out my routine to get my runs in between working, eating, sleeping, shoveling snow and spending time with my family.

A quick review of January so far:

Week 1 - Ran just over 40 miles.  Weather was decent.  More autumn-like than wintery.

Week 2 - Ran 41 miles.  Weather was OK.  Started to turn wintery towards the end of the week.

Week 3 (so far) - Winter hit us full blast.  Miles were down due to stormy weather and busy work schedule.  Decided this would be a good time for a cutback week.

We finally have enough snow to break out the snow shoes and we're going to do that this weekend.  I hope the kids enjoy it.  I know as a kid I always thought it was fun to feel like I was floating on top of the snow.  It's fun, easy, good exercise and will teach the kids that just because it's winter it doesn't mean we are trapped in the house.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

2011 Boxscore Edition

Looking back at my 2011 running boxscore:

  • 2011 was my first full calendar year as a runner
  • Ran 1,280.3 miles
  • Best month was December with 158.8 miles
  • Worst month was May with 56 miles
  • Average miles per month was 106.7
  • Races completed:  4 road 5K's; 1 trail 5 mile; 1 trail half marathon; 1 road half marathon.
  • Coldest run was 2/8/11 at -7F air temp.  I didn't record the wind chill that night.
  • Warmest run was 6/8/11 at 84F air temp.  Wind chill was not a factor ;-)
  • Shoe mileage:
    • Nike Air Peg Trail - 491 miles (494 total miles), most likely retired due to excessive wear in the heel area
    • Asics Cumulus 12 - pair a - 528 miles, still going strong
    • Asics Cumulus 12 - pair b - 179 miles
    • New Balance 876 - 82 miles, took the Nike Air Peg's place