Friday, August 31, 2012

50 Shades Chapter 1

With all the hype of a certain book out there...I thought I would give you my thoughts on the 50 Shades of Running

Chapter 1  the Best advice

50.  Negative splits are best.
49.  The Best time to run is NOW.
48.  Plan your race/run and run your plan.
47.  Every run starts the same way…with just one step.
46.  A runner, a bear and a priest walk into a bar…the runner asks if he can get some water.
45.  Runners don’t sweat, that’s just their awesome leaking out.
44.  #Runchat…it’s worth a click
43.  It’s either a bowling shirt and rented shoes or your singlet, shorts and running shoes, your choice.
42.  Everyone wishes they could run, only a few are blessed to be able to.
41.  The long run…love and pain…enjoy the ride.

Be sure to check in next Friday for Chapter 2.

What was the last book you read?

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Would you rather

Would you rather?

If given the choice, would you rather: 

Win the Olympic marathon in stunning fashion, crushing the competetion and crossing the finish line in Olympic stadium in Athens Greece.


Throw the winning touchdown pass in the Superbowl after leading your team through a successful season.

So would you rather...let us know!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Running Mind Dump - Aug

Random thoughts that enter my mind while running down the over crowded streets of life. (Turkey, Tacos, Skillet, Cookie Monster, Vote 2012, Batman vs Charlie Sheen, Colonial 200 mile, The Flash, Big Bang Theory and GOD)

Un-Running Related: 
--  Food Recommendation:  Turkey Tacos….ground turkey instead of hamburger, oh yummy! 

--  Music Recommendation:  The Christian Band Skillet  They Rock!

--  Cupcake/Cookie Recommendation: Mmmmm Cookies!

--  Worried about the world:  I believe politicians are no longer running on platforms that would help the country, but on platforms that will appeal to the widest voter groups.  “Ask not what is good for your country but on what platform will get you elected.”

--  Political thought:  How far in debt are we, after a billion…I can’t assign a value to it anymore. 

Running Related: 
--  Who would have the better marathon time, Batman (in full Bat gear), or Charlie Sheen (after you told him there was an open bar 26.2 miles down the road)? 

--  If Usain Bolt could keep up his 100 meter time (9.79) for the full marathon he would finish in 1hr 14mins (approx, someone check my math)! 

-- Training thought:  About a month away from the Colonial 200 mile relay, running this event with 3 great running buddies….what did we sign ourselves up for?

-- Bizarro-World thought:  If you had to run a local race dressed up as a Super hero, who would it be?  The Flash for me! 

-- Vain running thought:  Would I look good in my Flash costume?
-- If you are running down the road, alone….and you fart, burp or sneeze do you say excuse me?  I do…and I have no idea why?????

-- That "Call Me Maybe" song is the worst song ever to have stuck in your head during a long run…I think my face melted off by the time I could get that out of my mind.

--  We need a running reality show…"So You Think You Can Run."

Heavier Then Running Related:
-- If GOD (and there is a GOD) said yes to every one of your prayer requests yesterday, how would the world be different today.  Be BOLD pray BOLD…(but not in the GOD is your sugar Daddy kind of way)...Listen to the whole message here.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Week 4...CHECK

Monday             6 (6 miles in 52:11 @ 8:42 pace) 
Tuesday         off
Wednesday      6 (6 miles @ 9:13 pace)
Thursday        off
Friday             off      
Saturday         14 (12 miles @ 10:13 pace in a thunderstorm)
Sunday           off
Total 24 miles

A month ago when I started back on the road to the marathon, I wasn't sure how long I could keep this up.  For the first time in my 12 year running career my body had failed me when I came down with some knee pain.  Running to many hills led to a slight case of tendonitis (I hate that word).  And the road back would likewise be some un-ventured territory.

Another solid week...slow but sure.   Since I'm unable to run "back to back" days I've been running my work week runs at a good pace.  I felt good during both six milers this week and have hope I'll soon be back running "back to back" days soon.

The long run this week was planned for 14 miles, but Mother Nature had another idea.  Saturday she blew into town and flooded us out.  My early morning run got delayed which threw everything out of whack.  3 hours delayed, I started my run during a slight mist, by the time my run was over I had all the storm elements thrown at me. At 12 miles...I was beat, I gave the elements and my run the best I could.

Even with all the storm elements thrown at me it was still a great long run.  And a Happy Knee Run at knee pain.
Week 5 will included a 25k trail race, but I'm running it as a supported training run and a first race in Tennessee.  Another race, another state on my 50 races in 50 states bucket list.

What is on your running/racing bucket list?  Share it with us...

Friday, August 24, 2012

I Believe In Lance

24 Hours Later, I Still Feel The Same Way:

The USADA (a gov’t body with no power, no authority and no control) is going to suspend Lance Armstrong on doping charges with testimony by key witnesses.  My understanding is that these witnesses were offered immunity from their own legal problems for testimony.  The same immunity offered Lance a few short months ago if he would admit to doping…he turned them down.
I don’t buy it.

If you have not read Lance’s Statement I suggest you do, also I suggest you read the USADA case….oh yea they have not made one.

Armstrong is the most tested man in sports and has been for years.  He has never hid from the blood testers, he has made himself available and he has NEVER tested positive for doping.  One more time, HE HAS NEVER TESTED POSITIVE, according to the governing bodies with the power, with the authority and with the control to suspend him and remove his tour wins.  But now after all these years, after all the cases against him have been successfully defended, NOW the USADA has something on him.  I doubt it and I want my tax money back.  The US Justice Department closed a case against him because “they lacked evidence,” now all of a sudden there is evidence?

I don’t believe it. 

I also don’t buy that if Armstrong was doping, and doping for nearly 15 years…that he would have been able to keep it hidden from a sports world attacking him from all directions.  Consider the logistics trail that would have been needed to supply his alleged doping.  This supply system would have to have been able to smuggle illegal drugs into and out of foreign countries, into and out of world class racing events and past inspectors including the worlds leading blood testing programs.  As well Armstrong would have had to been able to control the legion of followers who shadowed him at every turn, not to mention celebrity friends, sponsors, girlfriends and an X-wife.  Surely one of them would have wanted to call him out if doping was true…

I don’t believe he could hide it. 

Also consider the case of physical evidence.  If Armstrong was doping what physical marks would have been apparent on his body.  No human could put that many needles in his body and keep the tracks hidden.

I find it funny…almost comical.

But I guess if he did dope, he also doped for the NYC marathon and the Ironman events.

I met Lance while deployed to Qatar Air Base.  He made a MWR stop to support the troops so my judgment may be biased.  We had a 5 minute one on one conversation about marathon training.  He showed a sincere interest in my running and "MY" training program.  Why would a world class athlete who had the advantage of performance enhancing drugs give a "rats butt" about how I trained?   I don’t believe for one moment he doped, yes the sports world is dirty and when one clean guy climbs to the top, the world as a whole is going to want to bring him down.

Ride on Lance, Run Strong…LiveSTRONG and keep doing what you do.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

A Thought on Thursday...

Throwback Thursday Thoughts...

Long term, To run is easier then to not...

The first step is tough, but the last step is GREAT!

A bad day running is better then the best day of recovery.

Get out and run, the rest of the day will take care of it's self!

Throwback Thursday:
Wish I had a picture of my throwback race.  But any pictures from those gone by days have been thrown out during one of my many military moves.

My first race was the "We Love Erie Days 10k" back in 1988.  I had been training for around 9 months (getting ready for the military) and I had put in a lot of miles but really did not know much about racing or pacing.  In fact I did not know much about running.

This 10k was staged in down town Erie, Pa.  I remember being nervous and very out of my comfort zone at the start.  Not knowing how I should handle myself in the race I got caught up in the hype and went out way to fast.  My idea of pacing was to try and find a another runner who looked like me and follow them...figured we had to be at the same fitness level.  Okay this did not work!

Within the first mile I knew I was in trouble...and at the mid way point I was suffering!  Oh I was in pain and thought I'll never run another race again.  In the heat of August, running faster then I was capable, it took all I could do to hang on and not stop running.  I was suffering but was determined to never walk and finish this race.  

The route went past a lot of the traditional neighborhoods of Erie and the closing miles lead us to State street and a down hill finish on the public dock.  I crossed the finish line in 59 minutes and some change.  I finished, I had not walked but I was not happy.  This race taught me that I had no idea what I was doing and put me off from racing for years.  I learned more about training and pacing in the years to come.  After this throwback lesson racing became a lot more fun!

Do you have a throwback race that stands out?  Tell us about it!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Raining Mondays

Raining Days and Mondays Always Get Me Down...(updated)

During the wee hours of Monday morning, I got out of my cozy bed (Rats, before the alarm went off) and dusted the nights rest out of my mind and my eyes.  Once I was some what alive, I ventured down stairs to preform my morning ritual, AKA let out our puppy Hanna, and to my surprised I was shocked by how much rain we had recieved overnight.  But being "A Runner" my mind did not function properly.  I should have worried about my dogs safety... "Should Hanna be wearing a life jacket" or I could have worried about my own safe communte to work..."I wonder how the roads are" or even a thought or two about lining up the animals 2 by 2 would have been appropriate,

(Hanna was safe)

The first thought that came to my mind...will this mess up my afternoon run?  A runners problem if I have ever seen one.

WEEK 4 (10 weeks until MCM)
Monday             6 (6 miles in 52:11 @ 8:42 pace) 
Tuesday         off
Wednesday      6 
Thursday        off
Friday             off      
Saturday         14
Sunday           off

How did your Monday run go?  Did it rain?

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Week 3 Success

Come Back Week 3 = Success!

With 10 weeks until the Marine Corp Marathon, the long run was going to be a important milestone to get past.  In week 2 I found out my knee can't handle "back to back" running days, so we adjusted the plan.  Week 3 was going to offer up the double digit long run. 

Would a double digit long run prove to be a road block?  If so I could see no way to adjust the plan around that one.

Monday           6 (6 miles, 9:13 pace)
Tuesday         off
Wednesday     6 (6 miles, 9:15 pace)
Thursday        off
Friday             off      
Saturday         11(12 miles, 11:00 pace)
Sunday          off
Total miles 24

And a day after, my knee feels just fine...

Friday, August 17, 2012

Long Run Love

Do you love or hate the long run?

For some the long run is the equivalent of the pop quiz, final examine or book report from our school days, we dread it.  The days leading up to the long run reminds us of the pressure built upon meeting an assignment deadline or returning back to school either from a long weekend or a week of vacation.  As that long run draws closer, the anticipation grows and before you knew it there was a knot of despair tightening in the pit of our stomachs.  The long run for some is the final examine that we are never ready for.  The long run is something we do to get to our goal no matter how much it hurts.

But for others the long run is why we run, like some secret craving, we love the long run.  The openness, the unlimited distances and the challenge are what our running lives are set on.  The days before the long run are filled with anticipation, hunger and a feeling of freedom.  The freedom of the long run comes with the mindset that once we push off on the run there is nothing that can get between us and our miles, the beauty of the open road, and the cadence of being along with your footfall.  The long run offers us a chance to reconnect with ourselves and with the world and nature around us.  The long run is part of who we are and a part that we love.

Whether you hate it or love it, the long run is an important part of your marathon training. Here are some tips help prepare you properly for your marathon.

1.  Take it easy the day before.  If I run up to 15 miles I plan a day off prior to my long runs, 20+ and I’ll take two days off prior to my long runs.  I use the same rest cycles for my races.  You want to have some zip in your legs come race day.

2.  Hydrate and eat properly leading up to the run and eat and drink something before you start.  You would never go on a long drive with an empty fuel tank, why run on an empty belly.  Find out which foods work best for you, for 20+ mile runs a carb load the night before the night before and eat solid the night before.  My favorite fuel food, spaghetti and pancakes!

3.  Do your long runs at the same time as your marathon.  If you’re running an early morning marathon, run your long run at or near the same time of day; condition your body, set the body clock for the same time of day as the big run.

4.  Don't overdo the mileage.  Follow the 10% rule, do not increase your long run distance or weekly mileage more then 10%...bigger jumps in mileage will put you one step closer to your next injury.  Also pay attention to the terrain, do not over do hills, trails or surfaces that pound on your body.

5.  Experiment with clothes and foods.  The long run offers a great opportunity to test out new running gear, refueling practices, food and tempo.  You do not want to show up on race day sporting a new pair of kicks, your newest shirt or a new pair of shorts, unless you really enjoy blisters, chafing and the pain that goes along with both.

And finally

6.  Treat your legs right when you're finished.  There’s nothing better then getting off your feet and taking a good nap after a long run, you earned it...enjoy!  Oh yea then order a pizza!

Do you love or hate the long run?  Why?  Post a comment below and let us know.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Week 3

Nothing left but the long run!

Monday           6 (6 miles, 9:13 pace)
Tuesday         off
Wednesday     6 (6 miles, 9:15 pace)
Thursday        off
Friday             off      
Saturday         11
Sunday           0

The Marine Corp Marathon is still on my horizon.  I plan to stick to a "3 running days a week" 100 mile plan for the rest of Aug and see how my knee holds up.  If all goes well then I'll try to get back to a 4 running day plan.

Returning from an injury and getting into marathon shape is a balancing back, so far so good!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Running and Rafting

Marathon come back Week 2 is in the books, but not without a little concern.  This week I would test my knee with the first “come back” back to back runs, on Wednesday I ran 5 miles around our housing area and then planned to go 6 Thursday.  The run Wednesday run went well, not an issue but when I pushed off on the first steps of Thursdays run the old familiar and despised pain in my knee came back, not near the same level but just enough to say Hi “Remember Me.”  

Well I did remember and was not happy…

I managed to work my way thu the knee thing and ran a solid 5.5 miles, but figured I had to adjust my training plan to avoid back to back running days a little while longer.  I ended my running week on Saturday…a nice 6 miles along the roads and levees of Scottsville, Va during an weekend camping adventure.

Monday           4 (check)
Tuesday          off
Wednesday     5 (check 5.25)
Thursday         6 (check 5.50)*slight pain on start
Friday             off      
Saturday          6 (check 6.15)
Sunday           off
(check 20.9 miles)

With the running week behind me, Michele and I went tubing down the James River with a group of camping friends.  It was a perfect day, we had a ton of fun, the weather was outstanding and the laughs were never ending.  I’m also happy to report the sharks, alligators and flying monkeys of the James River left us to our own devices.  If you’re ever looking for a nice weekend around the James River and Scottsville, VA head over to Horse Shoe Flats Camp Ground and tell them Brian and Michele sent ya…

On to week 3, I’m going to adjust my training plan to not run back to back days for the remainder of Aug, and leverage clock time to get in 4 runs a week.  Let’s see how long run Friday nights go….Am I crazy????

Monday           6
Tuesday         off
Wednesday     6
Thursday        off
Friday             11      
Saturday         off
Sunday            3

"In ALL things, TRUST GOD"

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Olympics and Life

My wife and I love watching the Olympics...we are always moved when we hear how important it is for the athletes to represent their country in the sport they love.  And for the lucky few who get to stand on the podium as our national anthem is played, truly a dream comes true.

Congratulation to all of TEAM USA, your representing us well.

And to all of the future Olympians who are presently at home, in the gym and/or out on the road busting their tails to make the 2016 Summer the looks and emotions displayed over the last few days....IT HAS TO BE WORTH IT.  Work hard, train hard and your dreams can come true!

My come back continues:
Monday           4 (check)
Tuesday          off
Wednesday     5 (check 5.25)
Thursday         6 (check 5.50)*slight pain on start
Friday             off      
Saturday          6
Sunday            off
Think I have to adjust my training plan and avoid back to back run days for a few more days.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Week 2

Week 2 (11 weeks until MCM)

Once you go without "it"…having "it" back reminds you just why you RUN!

The feeling of getting back on my feet would be described as “cautious but hopeful” but entering my second week, the come back feels real.  And I’m beginning to see myself running the Marine Corp Marathon in 11 short week.

Last week I managed to log 16 miles (3, 4 and 9 miles) but the week was not about the total miles it was getting back into a routine. It was about testing out the knee and it was about getting in some kind of long run.  The long run, I could not have asked for that to go any better.  I ran with great friends, the miles were easy and I felt strong.  The knee was NEVER an issue.  As good as I felt I could have gone into double digits, easy.  Week one was a success both physically and mentally.

Week 2 will see a pick up in miles and the first “back to back” running days in what feels like forever…(6 weeks.)

Monday           4 (check)
Tuesday          off
Wednesday     5
Thursday         6
Friday             off      
Saturday          6
Sunday            off

Here’s to a success week…pray for me and wish me luck.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Come Back Week 1

30 days ago when the doctor told me I needed to take the next month off, after picking my jaw up off the ground, I thought I could tape up my knee and just push thru. A failed run and I knew I had to shut it down.  To keep in shape I worked out on our elliptical, watched alot of movies and dreamed of the day I could once again feel like a runner.

Thank you, knee strap!

 Without running...I began to feel like runners were the other guys, I lost the handle on my eating, and I began to questioned if I could get back to where I once was.


The come back week came was upon me...and I was pretty nervous and lacked some confidence.

I made it past my first run, second run, third run...but what about the long run?

TODAY I ran 9 miles and never felt a thing out of my knee, I felt strong, I felt capable and I felt like a runner.

Monday           3 (check)
Tuesday          off
Wednesday     4 (check)
Thursday         4 (Elliptical, thunder storms)
Friday             off      
Saturday          6 (9 miles)
Sunday            off

It's only one week and I'm going to keep myself in check...but today was a good day!  Bring on WEEK 2

Thursday, August 2, 2012

First Big Test

(pictures has nothing to do with story,
I just thought it was funny)

Yesterday was my third run on the come back trail part II and to say I was a bit nervous would be like saying the
Grand Canyon is another pot hole.  It was on the third run of my first come back attempt which set me back with the return of knee pain.  I "SOOOOOO" did not want this to happen again.  I would have accepted anything but knee pain, a sharp stick in the eye, a root canal, another vasectomy, showing up for the first day of school in my underwear, anything BUT Knee Pain!

Well yesterday after work, in 100 degree temps and with my knee strap firmly in place I managed to log 4 pain free miles at a rather quick 8:41 pace.  I really wanted to run slower but I just could not get myself to slow down.  And I’m happy to report this morning all is well in Kneeland, USA.

Monday           3 (check)
Tuesday          off
Wednesday     4 (check)
Thursday         4
Friday             off      
Saturday          6
Sunday            off

Tonight’s run will be slower…I promise.  Now to find my pants.