Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas Week

Hi everybody,

Well it is the week after Christmas and the beginning of week 5 of my Marathon training.

It was a little tough to get motivated but I think I did ok. I was suppose to go out and do a 3 mile run on Christmas day, but that did not end up happening. Running around visiting family just got in the way. I thought about going out at night when the day was over, thinking that I had read somewhere about teaching your body to keep running even if you are tired. Well I decided that it was not worth going out as tired as I was in the off chance that I would injure myself. That is not what I am doing here. I am here to train and complete a full marathon and not injure myself in the process.

I know that time on my feet on long runs on the weekend will help me to train my body to keep on keepin on. In fact, I did a long run this weekend, my longest run yet. The group I run with on the weekend had our largest turn out yet. 10 people. It was great to run the back roads in such a large group. Of course they are all faster then I am. Not all of us are training for a marathon so it was determinded that those running the marathon set the pace. Well I was not really up for that. I sometimes feel bad holding people back. I started out in the front, but at about mile 3 some people started to pull away. It did not bother me at all. We all met up at mile 6 for a fueling break and then went on our way.

The only problem that I have is that I don't do well on hills and we have a lot out here in Western Loudoun County. I have only been running for a year so I don't feel my body is as acoustomed as the other runners in the group who have been running for a lot longer then me. Don't get me wrong, I respect the hills. I try to pay very close attention to my posture while going up and down, I am just not used to them yet.

I will say that I am really enjoying the running in the winter so far. Sure it has it tough moments when you are outside at 5:00 am and the wind is blowing right at your face and the temperature is 15 with the windchill. The way I look at it, its better then running in 90 degrees with 90 % humidity.
I try not to look too far ahead, but tomorrow looks like it is going to be cold and windy. Temperature looks to going to be about 22 degrees with wind gusts around 20 MPH. I think I will be running with a fleece jacket and one of those fleece face guards. The ones that cover your whole head and face except for your eyes. So we shall see what things are like tomorrow.

Well see you on the next post.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Week Three

So Week three is done.
It was a little difficult only due to the fact that we had a winter storm come through. That made if a bit difficult to get the long run in outside.
I did get some yaktrax but due to scheduling snafus I could not get the run in outside, I had to do it on the treadmill. Was not that happy about it, but I did get some miles in.
Not sure if anybody else has experienced this or not, but it does not appear that I can run as fast on the treadmill as I do outside. Of course my treadmill is old and a low end model, but I just thought that to be weird.
Anyway, I have been doing good on my running schedule during the week. I do enjoy the lunch time runs that I do at work. It helps to clear the mind and provide a nice break in the middle of the day. The only downside is that there is no shower facility to use. I bring a towel and lots of deodorant and do a wash in the sink. There is a private bath room that I can use to change and get cleaned up in so it is not that bad.
So after running at work 2 days a week I get up early in the morning and run for a couple of miles before getting ready for work. I have noticed that my pace is a little slower to start but I do tend to pick it up towards the end. If you have never run at 4:30 in the morning, try it once. It is one of the most peaceful feelings I have ever had.
Well nothing much else to talk about right now. Christmas is right around the corner, literally. This is going to be a challenging time as to when I am going to get my runs in but, we will get through this.
thanks for reading, promise to provide a more timely update next time.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Week two of training

Well week two is in the bag and I must say that I have definitely been tested.
The weather is starting to prove that it is winter time.
On Tuesday we ran 3.3 miles with two quarter mile sprints, one in the beginning and one at the end. It was a good day, not too cold or windy. On Thursday we ran 4 miles at a regular pace but the wind started to pick up. I say we because I am referring to a friend at work. This is our lunch time ritual. We have been doing this for sometime now. I can not exactly remember when we started but it was before the summer began. Come to find out that if I was not running at lunch time, neither would he which he is going to be running the Shamrock half marathon. So I motivate and inspire someone. That felt great to hear.
Now on to Friday where the wind did not let up. It started Thursdays afternoon and really started to pick up Thursday night and into Friday morning. When I got up Friday I was tired, but I needed to follow the training. There was nothing wrong with me. Sure I could have picked any excuse in the book, you know the one that has been mentioned in numerous podcasts of late. I can not remember exactly which one but it could be the run run live podcast or the Phedippidations podcast, or the runners roundtable or runners lounge. The title of the book is: Coach, I didn't run because...: Excuses not to Run by Coach Dean Hebert.
I could have crawled back into bed and put it off, but I just could not do it. I went out and ran 3.28 miles in a howling cold wind. It was worth it. Sure I hated being out there, but I felt so much better when I was done.
So now comes the weekend and my long run. A friend of mine from the local running group was doing an ultra on Saturday and a couple of other guys were going down to run with him on the last 10 miles. They invited me. I was tempted to go but I was hesitate as I did not want to run too much. What I mean is that I ran on Thursday and Friday so I wanted to rest on Saturday and do the long run on Sunday, instead of running on Thursday Friday and Saturday.
Well, there is part of me that was thinking I should bite the bullet and run on Saturday but I did not. Enter the book of excuses.... Saturday night it starts to rain. Temperature drops to hover around the freezing mark. I wake up to a wet morning, but no wind thankfully.
Well I met up with the local running group at the predetermined location for a 12 mile trail run.
It was cold and raining. Including me there was 4 of us. Being that I am the "rookie Marathoner in training" I was instructed to set the pace. This was a change for me as I usually am the one playing catch up with the others, but it was fine. No one really said anything we were all glad for each others company on that cold rainy day. After a while we all forgot it was raining. I can not really tell you what we talked about. A lot of this and a lot of that and a lot of nothing in particular. We all joked and said that if it was not for the group we would not have come out to run today. We all inspired each other that day.
So week two in the bag with a total of 22.58 miles. WOW! who would have thought!
Thanks for reading.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Week one is in the bag

Well here is to the end of week one of training.
It was a good week. I ran at work during lunch 2 of the days and got up really early to run before work then I ran with the local running club.
So my schedule called for a total of 15 miles and I ended up doing 17.8 miles. All is good.
I have a little discomfort with my lower right leg. Nothing too major. I am icing during the day and putting it on a heating pad at night for a few minutes.
I believe my body is starting to get use to me beating it up. I am not real conserned with my pace but I have noticed that I have gotten faster.
My long run for next week says 6 miles but a guy I run with says that it should be 12. we will see how I feel. I was suppose to do 10 this past weekend but only did 7.5
Well there is not much more to talk about right now so I will close down and look to update next week.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

On with the Training

Ok here we go. I have officially started my training for my first Marathon.
I was kind of talked into it but not really. Ok let me explain.
After completing the Baltimore Half Marathon, and feeling the way that I did, I was thinking to myself........that wasn't so bad. So I started really thinking about committing to a full Marathon, but the bigger question would be which one.
Well the Marine Corp was coming up and I knew a lot of people that were running in it so we, the family and I, went to Crystal City to cheer the runners on.
After seeing and experiencing all of the support at Mile 23 I was selling myself on preparing to train for the Marine Corp for next year.
Well I started talking with some running friends about running a Marathon and they were all supportive. In fact they said "a couple of us are running Shamrock, you should think about joining us". Well after some coaxing and talking with I decided that I will take the plunge earlier then expected and run the Shamrock Marathon in Virginia Beach.
Its kind of fitting as I lived there for a while. My Dad being in the Navy was stationed at a couple of the bases in that area during the 70s and early 80s then we moved to California but we will save that for later.
As I mentioned before, and the real reason for this post, is that yesterday was my first running day for my training for my first Marathon.
So as with all of the races I have done in the past I am working on three goals. I am not really concerned about time as this is my first one, I just want to be able to complete it on my own. Of course when I started to train for my first 5k my thought was "running 3 miles? are you kidding me?!?!" But now look at me. I have completed a handful of 5ks and 10ks and even a Half Marathon.
So, aside from just finishing, my 3 goals are: I'll take it: 5 hours Main goal: 4:45 and Knock it out of the park: 4:30
So there it is in writing. Come March 21st we shall see what happens.
Thanks for reading.
Comments are always welcomed.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

a good week

Well today was a great day.

So I ended the week with about 12 miles. Not too bad.

On Tuesday I ran at work with a work friend, our usual 3.30 miles. Lately it has been a bit slow but we were able to get it done in 29 minutes and change. Our best time was back in September at about 28 minutes and some change.

We were suppose to run on Thursday, but the weather kept us in. So I had to settle for running on the treadmill in the basement. Not too bad but I think our tread mill has got some age to it. Not sure if there is a way to "tune up" a tread mill but I am going to look into it. I am really starting to enjoy running outside more and more.

So on Sunday I ran with the group. We had three new people join us. It was a great time. I don't run very fast and I feel bad that the others run so much faster then me, but we all have a good time. I must say that I am enjoying running with others rather then going out by myself.

So I have been doing some research on training programs for completeing marathons and I found one that I am going to give a try. Some have already started, they are 20 week or 25 week plans. This one is a 16 week plan that has me running 4 days a week with the long run scheduled on Sunday. It does not start until Dec 1st so I will be just maintaining base miles until then.

Thanksgiving is right around the corner so I better get some running in if I want to enjoy some stuffing........

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Race Report - Purcellville Turkey Trot

Well it has been 11 months since my very first 5k. It was the Reindeer Run sponsored by Lifetime Fitness. It was a blast. I had a great time.
In comparison, the time on my first 5k was: 37:26 this time was: 27:04
There were a total of 519 runners participating in the Reindeer Run, 213 males and 306 females and I placed 170 out of the 213 males. 46 out of 51 in my age group making me 375th overall.
I was pleased with that. Again this was my first organized 5k and I was going out there with the hope that I would be able to finish on my own.
So in looking at the Turkey Trot I can see how much I have improved.
I finished 26th out of 48 in my age group (40 - 49), 113th overall (out of 321). I went from a time of 37:26 (12:02 a mile) to 27:04 (8:43 a mile). Not too shabby if I say so myself. I am very pleased with where I have come from and how far I have gone so far.

For the past 11 months I have pushed myself and I have improved. I can not wait to see where I can take myself in the next 11-12 months.
Speaking of...........what is next you say? Great question.
As you may remember my goal was to run a half marathon. I obtained that goal by running in the Baltimore running festival. I felt great afterwards and was talking myself into running in a full marathon. I proved to my body and self that I was able to survive a half, should I try the full. If so, which one? There are so many.
Well my brother in law has been running in the Marine Corp Marathon for about 6 years now. We usually go to Crystal City to cheer him on. After this past MCM, I told need to do this.
So I have put a reminder on the calendar for when registration opens for the Marine Corp Marathon. However, before that comes up some of the people that I run with on the weekend are running in the Shamrock Marathon in March down in Virginia Beach. They talked me into taking the trip down there. So, in 2010 I will be running not just one but two Marathons.
I know that I have a lot of work to do, the biggest of which is getting a handle on my nutrition. The running/training I can do so I am not fearful of that. I need to eat better is the bottom line. I am not going down to Va Beach with the intent of getting a Boston Qualifying time, all that I want to do is beat the sweep bus and not run into the wall, but that is were the learning of nutrition will come in.
I am so looking forward to this test. I know that I have 100% support from my immediate family as well as my friends so I have a wealth of contacts that I can inquire to about things.
I will also be looking to up date this blog a lot more frequent as it will be my guide as to how well I do based on my training. So if I don't run well in March I should be able to look back and see what I might have done wrong, if anything, so that the same thing does not happen in Oct.
I have thought about doing a Podcast, but seeing that I am having difficulty updating a blog on a weekly basis I am holding off on that. Maybe I will start one up after the Shamrock.
Kind of fitting that I am part Irish and my first Marathon is the Shamrock.

Thanks for reading. I invite any comments you might have.


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Baltimore Half Marathon

Well it is done.

I have accomplished my goal of running in and completeing a half marathon.

It was a great experience and I am looking forward to may next one. Yes I plan on running in another half marathon, but more on that later.

To recap: Friday night was the expo and it was held at M&T stadium. It was a little crazy getting down there but we made it. Upon arriving we parked in the lot and headed to the check in tent. I picked up my card and goodie bag, verified all the information was correct and proceed into the stadium to pick up my shirt and race bib. All the venders were up on the club level and I had visions of myself getting a new pair of shoes, I decided that it was a bit too crazy to try on any shoes to see what felt good and what did not. I will need to go to my local running store and take the time to try some different ones on.

So we don't spend too long at the expo as I need to get my rest. The half does not start until 9:45 however the Marathon starts at 8:00 and roads will be closed at that point and with 20,000 people participating in the event not to mention all of the volunteers, parking is going to be tight. Well it was. We drove around looking for a place to park and finaly found a spot up on a curb. We were directed to park there by on of the volunteer directing traffic.

So we arrive in plenty of time for me to gather my thoughts and make my way to the start line for the half. I have to walk a bit of a distance but that is ok as it will allow me some time to warm up and get loose, but not to warm or loose.

So I was really not sure what I was going to be capable of doing. I knew what I wanted to do and being that my wife and daughter were there to cheer me on I was not sure what to tell them in regards to when I will finish. So my bright idea was to bring my phone with me and take pictures of mile makers and send them to her cell phone. Well that worked out great. She was able to take our daughter around to different places and do different things before I came down the home streach. I have attached some of the photos above.

Well I had a great time and I learn a lot about myself, what I can do and what I can accomplish. I felt like I had plenty of energy, the only thing was that my legs hurt.

So I will need to start to research on building up my leg muscles especially if I am going to commit to a full marathon or doing multiple halfs close together.

As far as entertainment on the course, well there was a band at the beginning, a band at mile marker 3 and a band at the end. There were a couple of locations were people were playing music through speakers, but I thought that there would be more live bands.

I will say that there was a lot of support on the course, but in the volunteers as well as spectators. There were obviously more in some areas (like the end) and less in others, but there was not one time when I looked around and said, "where is everyone?".

So will I do this again? YES! In fact, they have a "double challange". Run in Frederick and run in Baltimore and you can get a third medal. I think I am going to do that, well at least look into that.

Well more to come later.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

less then a week to go

Well it is less then a week to go until I hit the road for my half marathon.
I am really excited about it and looking forward as well as nervous about it all at once.
My training has gone well and I have had a lot of support from family and friends. I could not have asked for more. It makes me feel good that if/when I decide to commit to doing a full marathon that I will have the backing and support needed. I have already decided on time of year, it will be next fall. I have read too many incidents were someone went for a half or a full marathon in the middle of summer and the heat was almost unbearable.
Well it will be a short post. I have been trying to post this for a couple of days now. I am having an issue with my main computer at home and so it is going to the "shop" to get fixed.
thanks for reading.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Join a running group

I have put a lot of thought into joining a running club, but being that we live kind of out in the country there really is none in the area. I just don't see the need to drive an hour just to run a couple of miles, plus my day is very busy and I am not home enough to enjoy time with my family during the week.
So a friend of mine who I met as our kids are friends at school had mentioned that he started running with a couple of people out in our area. They get together a couple of days a week for a run. He invited me to join them and I jumped at the chance. They get together during the week but it is in the morning and, well I am a bit busy getting up, getting the kids ready for school and getting myself out the door to work. I did join them this past Sunday for a long run and it was great. I feel so much better running with someone besides myself. I learned that some of them are training for the Marine Corp and others just like to run. There are about 8 of them but I have only met 4.
The route that we did was a 6 mile out and back on the W&OD trail. We took a short break to get some water and fuel up then it was on the trail again for 14 mile out and back for a total of 20 miles. Well I only joined them for the first 6. It was my sons birthday and I wanted to get home so he could open up our gifts. Not to mention that I was not ready for a 20 mile long run yet.
So if you have ever thought of joining a running group I would say do it. So far it is working for me.
Thanks for reading.
I hope to post more soon.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Back to the Grind

Well, I have been bad not updating my blog. However, we are getting back to the "normal" grind with the end of summer so I should start to get things back to the way that it is suppose to be.
So this past week was good as far as my trianing is concerned. We were camping for the labor day weekend and packed up Monday to come home. I usually run at work during my lunch hour but since it was Labor Day I had to push my run til later. It was tough though, as we were invited over to a friends house for a late lunch early dinner cook out. We also had to get the trailer all cleaned up and packed away so I was a little anxious about when I was going to get to run. I did not want to wait until late at night. Well luckily I was able to get my run in at 6:00 pm just before it started to pour. It was raining very lightly off and on as I was running which was kind of nice. It was cool and not too cold. Well I got my 30 min run in and felt great, plus I did not have much else to do as the trailer was all cleaned and put away.
So on wednesday me and my co-worker did our normal 5k run at lunch, except this was not our normal run. We finally were able to go out and back in less then 30 mins, our fastest time to date. Of course it was very helpful that we were not stopped at all of the street crossings. It was a great feeling of accomplishment.
So I got home early enough on Thursday that my wife and I went for a quick run with our daughter leading the way on her bike. We got in 2.75 miles which brought my total miles for the week up to 9.5.
The weekend was a bit busier then it should have been. There was a party we had to attend that had been rescheduled from another day, and let us not forget about football. The one time that I actually sit on the couch and don't do anything else except watch TV. Most of the time the TV is on and I am doing other things. We all really enjoy watching football, especially the kids if it is on fox. They like cletus the robot.
Well that is all for now. I am probably going to one one last long run of about 10 miles before the half marathon. After that it will be mostly 5 - 8 miles for the one long run on the weekend.
I am getting excited and nervous.
Thanks for reading.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Spirit of Columbus Virtual Half

Well I took the plung early and ran a half marathon.

This was a virtual race that I participated in. So it really was not a race but more of a guide for myself to see how I would do and guage my pace. It was also a good gauge as to how my body would react and recoupe. I mapped out a course that followed the Washington and Old Dominion trail. It was a good run. The temperature was good. Not too hot and not too humid. There were some other runners out there and just about all of them were real friendly saying hi, good morning or waving. There were also a lot of bikers who were not as friendly.

I was running with headphones on and maybe they thought that I had them turned up, but they did not acknowledge the fact that they were passing me. Some of them startled me a bit. There were times were I felt myself getting into a grove and then I would see a biker out of the corner of my eye or they would cough right behind me. Not cool. Oh well. I was not sure how long it would take me but I was able to complete the course in 2 hours and 28 mins and change. My personal record for a 10k, almost half the distance of a half marathon, is 1 hour 1 min and change. So if I am able to keep up that same pace for 13.1 miles I should be able to complete the half in about 2 hours 10 mins and change. Not sure if I can keep that pace up for that long. I guess that is why we train. Well I took some pics with my phone of the virtual start line, the turn around and the finish. I have posted them here.

Well I feel that I am ready for the Baltimore running festival and we shall see if I plan to do a full marathon. I am sure coach dennis will talk me into it.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Aug 18th

Training update.
Well my training has been, well, limited.
We just got back from our last vacation trip to Jamestown and Yorktown.
We all had a blast. We walked about 25 - 30 miles. Needless to say I did not do any running while we were down in Williamsburg.
So this wil be very short as nothing is going on right now.
Will update later.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Race Report for Harris Teeter presents YMCA Loudoun County 10K & 20K

I ran the 10k.
Race started at 7:30 for both the 10k and the 20k and followed the same route. There was a spot where people running the 10k did a turn around and those running the 20k kept going to their turn around. So the start and finish was at the same spot for both groups.
So we begin the morning and all is well. It is getting hot and humid. On our drive to Leesburg we see some fog rolling through the mountains. The Temp is around 74 degrees and it felt like it as there was about 98 percent humidity. There was barely any wind to speak of so right then I knew that I was going to have to keep myself well hydrated. As we got under way the temperature rose but the humidity went down which was good but you could still feel it.
The route was a little different then last year, not that I ran it last year, but it seemed to make sense to me what they did.
We started on Harrison Street in front of Tuscarora Restaurant. We went south on Harrison Street until we got to Catoctin Circle and then we took a right. Last year they turn right on to Fairfax Street and then to King Street where the runners entered the W & OD Trail. This year we stayed on Catoctin Circle for about a mile allowing the pack to thin out a bit before entering the W & OD Trail. Once on the Trail it was an out and back course. The 10k participates had a turnaround just before Milepost 37 while the 20k runners continued on to their turnaround spot just beyond Milepost 40.
There really was nothing bad to say about the whole experience. Even though there were a lot of runner participating and the W & OD Trail is narrow, it never seemed like I was in cramped quarters. There were a couple of water spots available and even then it did not feel like a big back up. There were 708 (354 Male and 354 Female) finishers for the 10k and 604 (330 Male and 274 Female) finishers for the 20k. Total of 1,312 runners for the event.
Overall, for the 10k, I finished in 386th place. I finished 246th in the male division and 33rd in my age group.
I am not sure if there were any runners that could not finish due to the heat, but it was a hot one. One really nice aspect of the race was running on the W & OD Trail as most of it was covered by trees so that keep the sun from beating down on us.
Would I do this race again? Absolutely. Even though there was not much crowd support while you were on the trail you were never really alone as there were plenty of runners with you.
Again, I enjoyed this race a lot and I thought it was well managed.
At the end they had a big pile of wash cloths that were buried in ice and it was very refreshing. There was plenty of water and snacks available after the race but I am not sure the placement was very good. It was right next to the finish line which made it very congested as you were bumping into other runners as well as crowd cheerers. They had a real nice band playing in blocked off parking lot that had nothing else around it. It would have made more sense to have all of the other refreshments down there.
Well I am about 2 months exactly away from my first half marathon and I am very excited about it. I am very ready for it. I am trying to decide if I want to do another 5k or 10k race before then. Not sure. I guess I will have to consult my coach on that matter.
I will keep you updated.
Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A little late - less then a week to go

Wow. Am I behind. So much for updating this blog weekly.
Well it is the summer and things have been crazy.
We went down to the outer banks and had a great time.
I am still focusing on my training and still doing my runs. I have cut back on some of my cross training. We have not done Maya in a long time. I have not been biking or lifting either. Softball is over so I have one night that has freed up for me.
So I have less then a week for my next race. It is the Harris Teeter presents YMCA Loudoun County 10K. I am looking forward to it as it should give me a good idea on how I should do in October at the Half Marathon.
Well that is really all I have to write for now.
I promise to update on a regular basis.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

12 weeks to go

Well this is the week after the 4th of July. It has been a great week for training, in a round about way.
I did not do my usual running over the 4th of July weekend as 1. we were camping and 2. with all the walking we did in Busch Gardens I felt that was exercise enough.
So Monday and Wednesday was the normal 1/2 hour run at work with Colin and Harris for a total of 6.2 miles. It feels so good to run with other people, even though I hold both of them back I still enjoy the company and I know they do as well.
Now comes the weekend which I had a lot of activity scheduled. I had to do my long run, a bunch of yard work to do including cutting the grass plus I had a make up softball game smack in the middle of the day.
So I get up Saturday morning and I had a quandary. I was speaking with a buddy at work and he was giving away a youth motorcycle. I told him that I would take it. I was hoping to get it from him on Friday at work, but no such luck. So he was going to bring it to the house Saturday morning on his way out to his Dads place in West Virginia that he is buying. Anyway, I was not sure when he was going to be out, plus he mentioned maybe I could get it from him on Monday.
We I delayed and then decided to go out for my long run. I was planing on doing 10 miles.
Well I was 3 miles into it and he calls me. He was having some trouble finding the house. I directed him back to where he needed to go and told him I was on a run but on my way back. As I was doing a loop I really was not that far from home, a little less then a mile. So I turned around and headed home, unbeknownst to me was another runner following me. As I turned around she gave me a high five with a smile on her face. What a great feeling. It takes me back to some of the races I have done in the past, but more on that in a minute. So I was on my way back up the long hill in our neighborhood to our house and well as I could have figured there goes my buddy from work. He did not stick around long as he had to get going. This kind of gave me an excuse to cut my run short as it was getting real humid out. So I decided to end my run short at 4 miles. I finish all my other "chores" around the house so fast forward to Sunday morning. My wife and I wake up and she is feels like going for a run. She is training to do a duathlon in October so she has to be able to run 2 miles, then bike 10 miles then run 3.1 miles. I decide to join her and we end up doing 5 miles. I felt great! Mainly because it was early enough in the day and because I got the miles in that I wanted to. Again it always feels better to run with a partner. I am not sure why that is.
I usually plan on posting on Sunday night but time got away from me. However, I am glad that it did and here is why. So we go on our normal Monday lunch time run at work minus one as he had other things to do. I happened to wear my Cherry Blossom shirt and I am not sure if that has any meaning but about a third of the way through our run another runner was coming towards us and gives me a high five. Not sure why but it sure does feel good.
These two high five activities takes me back to the races that I have run in. I have enjoyed all of them and I think back to why. One because my family was there cheering me on and two crowd support. Some of the 5ks don't have good crowd support except for the beginning and the end but it is such a short distance compared to other races that I am starting to focus on.
So my recommendation is if you are thinking of participating in a race, do it. Just make the commitment and do it. You will be surprised and what gets you going. For me, having a bunch of people yelling and screaming saying "you can do it" makes me want to run faster. All it takes is that first step forward.

Monday, July 6, 2009

4th of July

Well this has been a very slow week as far as the training runs go. Not really much to say.
On Monday we ran for 3.1 miles. A nice 5k at lunch time with some buddies at work. This ended my monthly running stats at 52.91 miles. Not too bad.
On Wednesday to start the month of July we did 3.23 miles. I must say I really enjoy running at lunch time. It forces me to get up and away from my desk and the company is great as well. I do wish we had a shower to use. There is one in the girls bathroom, but now that we have females working here it is very hard to use it.
I did not do my scheduled Saturday long run as we were in Busch Gardens for the 4th of July holiday weekend. We did a lot of walking so I figured I would be ok. I must say that I am glad that today is a running day for me. I am starting to get those feelings of "I must run". Its not a bad feeling but I finally understand what some people go through when they get injured and can not run for a while. This makes me take a step back and really start to review my running so that I make sure I don't injure myself. I will have to make sure that I keep my pace slow today. I can just feel myself wanting to burst out of the gates like a bat out of hell.
Like I said not much going on now. I will post again in a week.
Thanks for reading.

Monday, June 22, 2009

What a week

Well the bid news this week is I got my Garmin. I have been looking for a while and trying to decide what model I was going to get. Of course the big consideration is cost. As we are trying to keep all spending down to the bare minimum. Believe me I even thought about not getting one, but from all the people that I talk with they said that it really helps them especially on the training aspect. I figure that if I am going to really get serious about running and really focus I am going to need all the help that I can.
I was reviewing Garmins web site to see the different models and trying to figure out what I need and what I want out of the different functions that are offered. I was set on the 300 series of the forerunner. I was seaching everywhere, ebay, Costco, amazon just to see what was out there and who had the best pricing. I was debating on used versus new. Then it happened. I came accross a web site This is a website that offers one product a day at a great price. Much like or There are many others as well. Anyway, yugster was offering a Garmin 305 for just over $100. This is a considerable difference in price from the list pricing and a better price from Costco. Granted this is a refurbished model but it comes with a warrenty so all is good.
So lets talk about my running this week.
Last Monday was good. There was news of other folks joining us on the afternoon run. That should be fun.
Well Wednesday came and so did the rain. We decided that it was not worth going out in the rain as it was really coming down. So I had to wait until that evening to do my run. Which was not too bad. I am reallying liking runing at work, especially with a runing buddy or two, we shall see who decides to join us.
Like I mention earlier, my garmin arrived. I am very excited. I was able to download all the software and charged it up. I used the heartrate monitor when we work out in the morning with maya and will download that information so I can compare the stats.
So now it is Saturday and time for my long run of the week. I wake up to the sound of rain. Crap! I guess I will have to run inside and I can't really use my garmin. Well I delay and delay and lo and behold the rain lets up and it looks like it is going to clear up. There is a lot of blue sky out there. I decide to go out side, because I really wanted to use my garmin and compare it with my Nike plus. So the training plan I am on had me running 10 miles, I was planing on going for 6 and then seeing how I felt. The last day of school was yesterday and we had some of the teachers over for a little get to gether. So I was a little tired but no excuses. Well I was about 3 miles into it when it started raining. It was not a bad rain, but it started to pick up and rain harder. This did not bother me as I was already hot and sweaty the rain help to cool me down. My wife even got in the car to come see if I needed to be rescued. I told her that it was just rain and that I was ok. So she drove off. Then it started to thunder and lightning. Well being that my route takes me by some very tall trees and even a lake I decided that it was not worth the risk and that I should continue in my basement on the treadmill. Well that did not happen as my feet and shoes were soaked. I wanted to let them dry out some. Well it was a very busy weekend with other this like a broken car came up and I was unable to finish my long run. So my miles for the week were down quite a bit. I was suppose to do about 18 and I only ended up doing 10. That is ok. With everything going on I don't want to risk over working my body. I will make up for it this week.
That is all for now. More to come, including updates with the Garmin.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Running with a work buddy

Well this past week was a good one. A buddy of mine decided to run with me at work. He is a faster runner then I am but it was still enjoyable. Like me he is also training for a half marathon. His is in September, while mine is in October.
We ran for half an hour which turned out to be about 3 miles. We ran the Washington and Old Dominion trail and talked about nothing but everything. We discussed some things that were going on at work, joked about some things, laughed about others and were astonished by more. It was quite enjoyable to run with someone other then the podcasts that I would normally listen to or music.
We ran on Monday and Wednesday for half an hour each day, for a total milage of 6 miles. We might have one or two more people join us in the future but we shall see. It is a lot to commit to. I am hoping that more will join. It is fun to have some running buddies.
Well continuing with my training, I went for my long run on Saturday and did 8 miles. It felt good. I tried out the sports beans that I bought a while ago. They really did not taste too good but I think they seemed to work as I went on to clean out the garage after my run. Another draw back was they were not very easy to eat especially while out on the run. I had to slow down to a quick walk while I chewed and drank some water. My body felt good and I did not fell that tired. I am looking to try out either the gu or the hammer gel next Saturday and we shall see how those work.
Well I think I am ready to start tell people about this blog to see if I can get some help in developing some widgets on it. The Nike ones that I have don't seem to be working too well.
Thanks for reading. More to com.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

A day at the races - race report

Well the rain stopped on Friday late afternoon so I was not running in the rain. Did that in May at the Apple Blossom 10k. It was not fun but it did not suck either. Anyway, this was a cross country race that traversed the horse routes on the grounds of Morven Park. They did have 3 jumps set up for us. They were on the low setting so to me it was really no big deal, although on the last one I could feel my legs getting very heavy. If there were any more I am sure there would have been trouble. As I mentioned the rain held off but that does not mean that the course was dry. Again this was a cross country course so we were running through the grass. We also had 2 little streams that we had to cross. They were about an inch deep and about 3 feet wide. Needless to say you were going to get your feet wet. I could deal with the horse jumps but I really did not like the water. Oh well. It was a fun time. I even had a friend come out and run with me, sortof. He finished 4th overall, whereas I finished 91st. He is a fast runner, but also probably weights 20 - 30 lbs less then me. I know that as soon as I can loose some weight the speed will come. I am trying not to get to obsessed with the speed and focus on the fact that I am out there getting it done. I wanted to run the 5k in under 30 mins mainly because I wanted to do the family fun mile with my family afterwards. The 5k started at 8:30 and the family fun mile was going to start at 9:00. Well I was a little short finishing at 31:41. It is a PR for me and I am very happy about that. I passed my family on the way to the finish line as both races started and stopped at the same locations. I think everyone really enjoyed themselves and I am hoping to do something similiar again in the future. I was suppose to post this on Sunday night but we had a very busy weekend. My daughter had her crossover from Brownies to Juniors that was happening at 10 AM on Saturday, so we could not hang around after the race. Then I went up to my folks cabin to help my dad with some house maintenance. Sunday was a day to get caught up with my own house maintenance. So honestly I forgot about posting this because I was dead tired Sunday night.

I will look to post again in a week.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Week of the 5k

Well today is Monday. I was suppose to post yesterday but the day got busy.
On Sunday I got up early and went to Mass. I was planning on going Saturday night but that is another story. Came home from Mass and worked out with Maya (My Fitness Coach on the Wii). She kicked my butt. When I finished or rather when Maya finished with me it was time to pick up my son who was returning from camping with the Boy Scouts. He earned his fishing merit badge. Came home and it was his turn to bring the tent home so I assisted him with setting it up so that it can dry out. About that time my wife and daughter came home from camping with the Girl Scouts at Hershey Park. It was then time for everyone to get cleaned up so that we could go to a High School Graduation Party. It was about an hour and a half drive away. So we got back very late and everyone was very tired.
So this is why I am posting now instead of yesterday.
My training last week went well even with Memorial Day weekend. I ran a total of 12.21 miles. This does not include the 4 miles I ran during lunch today. I am starting to enjoy taking off in the middle of the day at work for a quick run. It helps to relieve the stress.
Well I am running in the A Day at the races on Saturday. It is a 5 k that is billed as "A family-friendly event with abundant prizes, 5 year age groups, and a cross country course using the equestrian trails and a few natural obstacles". I was originally thinking that the natural obstacles that it refers too would be horse poop, but I was told that it might be logs that the horses jump over. We shall see. Either way it should be a good time. The family will be participating in the 1 mile family fun run after the 5k. The 5k starts at 8:30 and the fun run starts at 9. I am hoping that I will be done with the 5k and be able to do the fun run with them. That would give me a new PR in my 5k. We shall see.

Monday, May 25, 2009

So Begins the Training

Well so begins the training. I have commited to running in the Baltimore Running Festival. I have commited to doing my first half marathon. If it goes well I will look at doing the full marathon next year.
I have been following the taining that I downloaded for the Marine Corp Marathon. So this past week I ran a total of 7.88 miles. I feel really good. Most of my runs have been very good, except for Wednesday. I was just not into it, but I went out at lunch and ran for half an hour. I believe it actually helped me get through the rest of my day.
So aside from following the training program I am going to try to do some biking to work. Well at least some of the way. It is just a little too far for me to bike all the way, yet.
We have a Wii and have been working out with Maya on My Fitness Coach. It has been quite enjoyable but also tough. We have also been doing some work with the Wii fit, but honestly I don't like it as much as working with Maya.
I actually can not believe how much I am enjoying the running and the working out.
More to come.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

On my way

Ok so I downloaded the training program from the Marine Corp Marathon and it started this past week. I am not running the MCM, at least not this year.
Since I decided to get into running I have run three races. My first was a 5k then I did a 10 miler and finally a 10k. I have enjoyed all and I am looking to do more. I will update when I have commited to some. I do know that I plan on running in the LifeTime Reindeer Run 5k which was the first one that I ran and I am sure my time will be faster. I am working to get my 5k under thirty mins and I am almost there.
So this past week was good. The training program called to run for 30 mins on Monday and Wednesday, walk for 30 mins on Thursday and run 3.5 miles on Saturday. So I have decided instead of waiting until night to run that I would take time out at work and run during my lunch hour. I am only running for 30 mins right now so I think it will work out for now. Luckily the weather has held out and it has been nice during the day.
Softball season has started up again which has helped to put a break in the week for me.
So I run on Mondays and Wednesdays, play softball on Tuesdays, walking on Thursday. Saturday is set up for my long run and Sunday is going to be my rest day. Lets not forget about Friday. This past Friday was bike to work day. It felt great. I think I might start biking to work on Fridays. Of course that might be difficult on those weekends when we go camping.
Well bottom line is that I am starting to feel a lot better and I think that it is starting to show. Once I have commitments on races I will post them. I need to figure out had to add some more interesting items as well.
Thanks for reading.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Apple Blossom 10k

Well it is Saturday Morning. A little after 7 am and we are making our way West toward Winchester. It is a cool morning with a light drizzle. We see a bunch of runners and find our way to Handley High. It is still raining, but very lightly. My family drops me off so that I can check in and so they can go park. I find the check in area, get my bib number (629) and work my way around to get my ChampionChip to attache to my shoe. I never used one of these before but was able to get it on with no issue. I pick up my shirt and make my way to a small tent to get myself organized. My family was making there way at that point and we meet back up.
We made our way to the porta potties for a quick break before I make my way to the start line.
On the way back we run into my Mom. She made it down. That made me very happy.
Now its race time.
We start out going east on Handley Blvd and go past the finish line, we take a right on Braddock street and head south for a bit then take a right onto Jefferson st and start heading West and going up hill. Some runners were complaining about starting out on a hill, but I would rather have the hill in the beginning then the end. Any way, we continue on and take a right onto the High School Service road then another right which brings us back around to the start line.
This is mile 1 and I am about a 11:30 mile and feeling good.
We take a left onto Washington Street and start heading North for a bit. The streets are lined with chair for the parade later on in the afternoon. There are some people out cheering for us and it feels great. It is still drizzleing. We take a right onto Piccadilly street for a block or two then another right onto Braddock Street and start heading South. We pass by mile maker 2, but no timer so not sure how things are going. We are coming up to were we are passing by Handley Blvd and here comes the lead runners. Alene Reta finished the race in 29:04. That is a 4:41 pace. Wow! I am impressed.
Well here we are coming up to the half way point. My 5k split time was 33:42. I am very happy. My first 5k that I ran in Dec 2008 was 37 min and some change so I am extremely happy and feeling very good. Now the rain has stopped and the sun has come out.
We continue South on Braddock which changes to Valley Ave for a bit then take a left onto Jubal Early Dr and head East until we get to Loudoun St and then tun around and head West back to Valley Ave. We just hit the 4 mile mark.
When we get to Valley Ave we take a left and head South to Weems Lane. This area has a little bit of a hilly dip but it is not that bad. When we get to Weems lane we do another 180 and start heading straight back to the finish line off of Handley Blvd. We just passed mile maker 5. I am feeling really good. There were a lot of support along the course. I believe that most people were actually staking out thier spot for the parade, but it was still good to hear people cheer. We pass Mile 6 just before making the left hand turn to the finish line. I cross the finish line, per my chip, at 1:08:06 and I am happy. I feel great. I was looking for my Mom and family only to realize that they had "front row seats" at the finish line. They were going to take my picture as I crossed the finish line. We all missed each other, what a bummer!
Well I had a great time and felt great afterwords. My timing to starting to improve and I am getting faster.
I have not yet convinced myself that I am going to participate in a full marathon, but I have decided that I want to participate in an organized half maraton. I say that because I am going to run in the World Wide Festival of Races Half Marathon. I have not choosen a half marathon yet but I am looking into the National Maraton but I have to qualify for it. In order to do so I need to run a 10k in 1:05:00 or a 5k in 31:00. So I am almost there.
Thanks for reading. More to come. I hope to do a post once a week, hopefully on a Sunday night. I start my training schedule this week. I did not sign up for the Marine Corp Marathon but I did download the training program so I will be starting that.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

More Training

Well things are going well.
I took a little time at lunch today and ran for about a half an hour. I was suppose to run last night but I had a Church League Softball game last night so I was fairly tired.
I have been waking up about 45 mins early every morning for the past week and working out with Maya (My Fitness Coach on the Wii). I have been feeling very good lately and have started to drop some of the extra pounds.
I am running in my third race this Saturday, a 10k part of the Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival. It should be a good time. I am hoping that some of my extended family will be there. I just hope that the rain will hold off.
I am not sure what my next race will be. There are a couple of possible upcoming races this summer that I am looking to do, mainly 5ks, along with a half marathon or two.
Thanks for reading.
More to come.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Well I ran last night and then did some cardio work. I am feeling pretty good except that my left foot is starting to hurt. I am sure that it is not Plantar Fasciitis as my heel or arch does not hurt, it is mainly the part of my foot just behind my toes. I have done some reading and I believe that I should be able to get some relief from some foot pads. It seems funny to me that one foot would hurt but not the other. Well I will pick up some foot pads and see where that gets me.
I ran 3.11 miles last night and it was my fastest recorded 5k at 35 mins. I am looking to get this down to under 30 min. I have a 10k coming up on May 2nd but have not commited to anything beyond that. Looking at a couple of 5k's over the summer. I am going to be starting a training plan for a Marathon but again have not committed to anything yet.
Oops, I almost forgot the World Wide Festival of Races in Oct. I signed up for the half marathon.
I guess that slipped my mind as there is no entry fee and I get to run it wherever I am for that day.
More posts to come.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Taking the dive

Well I have done it. I have thought about it for a while and I have created a blog page.
This is actually going to be more of a public journal specifically geared toward my training. Training for what you ask? Well my running. I will get into more of that later.
My plans are to provide updates weekly on my goals and my training and how things are going.
Today is Good Friday and there are a lot of activities planned with the family this weekend. I hope to get a run or two in this weekend but we shall see.
Thanks for reading.