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Jacksonville, FL, United States
In Life as well as in running the secret is Pace.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

1st annual Gobble de Loop….

Today was our last workday before thanksgiving….

Mark, Chris and I set out… three middle aged… middle management types in the insurance industry… with families, kids, SUVs… Shrinking 401ks…

A perfect opportunity to see what we are made of.

The race was a single loop… 1.1 miles with a mile warm-up and a 2 mile cool-down.

Mark was to get a 1:30 head start… Chris :30.

After our warm-up… and a quick nature break… Mark is off… 1 Minute later… Chris left too… in the 30 seconds I jogged alone… trying to prepare my mind for the pain my body will soon endure.

I hit the start line in mid-stride and started running at a good, tempo, pace… after about 15 steps… I said out loud… “this is a race!” and hit the gas in earnest.

I could see Chris almost immediately. He was only 150 meters or so ahead…. I just tried to stay smooth. Just around the first corner I could plainly see them both. They both looked to be running slowly… I know that they both have long strides, however, so I didn’t get too confident.

My plan was to try to run with high turnover to get my speed for the first half, then stretch out my stride for the back straight. This plan did not work very well… I have not done this in training and it’s killing me by the end of the first quarter so I abandon the idea.

Just around the second turn I can see both Chris and Mark again… I focused on Chris…. He was closer. I felt myself slowing down a little… I tried to pick it up and little by little Chris (and Mark) started coming back to me.

As Mark reached the final turn I saw him put his hands on his hips… whether it was to stretch or catch his breath… it did not matter… I knew Chris and I would both catch him.

Chris is only about 4 steps in front of me at the final turn… that is the good news. He saw me… that was the bad news. Chris hit the gas…. We both passed Mark and he opened up another 4 step gap by the end.

I ran a 6:31 pace… 17 seconds better than last week… but… I still think I could have raced smarter. I was so afraid of Chris’ sprint that I was apprehensive about catching him in fear of him dropping me immediately after putting in all that effort.

Well… that, is the demon that I will wrestle with for the next week.

Can’t wait to do it again.

More home improvement and a 10 miler…

Most important item to tackle on Sunday… figure out what is wrong with the washing machine. After the bathroom issues on Friday… I took it slow and methodically… eventually the culprit was identified… a tiny sock for a 7 year old foot was lodged in the drain pump.

Kara and I left together and ran the first mile together. 11:15… then she ran 7 while I ran 9. I did a double of the big loop with a tiny (.3 mi) shortcut on loop 2 to avoid Tiger Hole Rd and the traffic there because it was getting dark and I didn’t want to get runded over.

Started out strong… and… easy… with 2 8:30s.. the next 6 were not as easy as I wanted them to be… ~8:55 pace… never really worked too hard…. But it was no Sunday stroll either…

Mile 10… where I should, if I calculated correctly, catch Kara again… As the mile begins she is nowhere in sight…. I sped up…. And checked all of the side streets… I where she *should* be… on one of the streets on the back part of our loop… Finally a half mile later I catch a glimpse of her… 300 meters ahead. I picked it up to about a 7:45 pace in an attempt to close the gap.

I finished about 50 meters behind her… a total of 10.25 miles.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Sushi, sake, and a six miler….

I had Friday off…

You know the saying… do something every day that scares you? Well I’d done that earlier… I removed the toilet in the kids bathroom fixed the flange and upt it back… and it worked!!!

So it’s 11 PM on Friday night… 42 degrees… I’m running through a dark neighborhood…

Don’t ask why…

Just suffice it to say… Running is a cheap form of therapy…

The evening had begun well enough… Sushi and sake with Kara, Masey and Missy…

I had decided on tights, an under armor and a long sleeve yellow shirt with lots of reflective stuff on it… I got a few funny looks in my silly outfit... big guy... tight shiny pants... bright yellow shirt...

I was cold from the first step to the last… I felt tight until the last mile… averaged somewhere in the 9:20 mpm range

I finished… and was in a much better place mentally because of it.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Raceday Thursday

Met up with Mark and Chris at lunch.... both of them are in the beginning stages of fitness build-up... We have been adjusting our race format accordingly for the past few weeks in order to make the race competitive. Today we definitely did better.

How I came in last:

We decided to run 2 miles the race one loop (1.1 miles) all out. Mark was to get 2 minutes and Chris was to get a minute. Nice talk getting caught up with each other for the first 2 miles.

Mark takes off... Chris and I jog for a minute... then Chris is gone.

After another minute I take off... Just concentrated on running with good form and with quick feet.

I cover the first quarter @ a 6:21 pace... I round the corner and I can see Chris and Mark ahead... Chris seems close... 100 meters or so. I think that I have him for sure... just a matter of time. Mark is almost at the next corner but... I gave him 2 minutes... so I think that I'm doing okay.

On the next straight away I see them both again. Mark seems closer but Chris is still ~100 meters ahead!?!?!?! I still think that I can get him... well I think that for about 10 steps.... then, as the final corner approaches... the grim reality sets in... I will be last. I still ran hard... clocked a 6:48 mile... But it just was not enough.

The cool down mile was all talk about mile splits... pace... and next time.

Can’t wait till next time....

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Midweek Mid-distnce

I ran 10 today.... no warmup... no cool down... no stretching... intervals... nothing.

I simply walked out the door with a sketchy idea of running 10 and looking for new extensions for my work loop.

I found a great extension... a service road next to a spur line of railroad track. it's about .5 miles long and turns my 3 mile loop into 4 quite nicely.

every mile was a sub 9. easy peasy for the most part... the last two miles were not super easy anymore but they we far from hard. Average pace 8:51.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Chicken Wings and Goose Eggs


I don’t know how my extra-long weekend got reduced to this… It’s almost 6PM… I have 50 minutes… I have waited until just before the chicken goes in the oven…. We are having chicken wings… I can’t enjoy chicken wings unless I have earned them…. So far this weekend I have earned nothing… Okay… so I did earn some applause for my karaoke rendition of “Just a Gigolo” Saturday night but I’ve got two solid goose eggs in my training log.

I stand at the end of my driveway somewhat irritated at myself. I wanted to do 15 today. No real reason I shouldn’t have.

I decide to run the complete loop. It’s ~5.6 miles. I don’t really do the math on how long it will take I just start running…. Okay not quite so fast. I start by jogging/walking/jogging for a minute or so while I dork around with my MP3 player. I finally decide that it’s only going to produce music for one ear…. Whatever….

I plan to warm-up for a mile ~9:30 or so… then run 8:30s.

My first glance at my Garmin shows a pace somewhat north of that due to dorking described above… I just start running…

Mile 1 ends up being a 9:09. It is not really easy or much of a warm-up… It is *running*

At the one mile mark I do, however, kick it into tempo pace. I don’t look at my pace much… just try to stay smooth. I know this route well. I hear the beep…. Mile 2: 8:06… I try not to think too much.

I have this idea that I should test myself and try to run a sub 8 for mile three… being the middle mile and all… so I pick up my pace just a touch… At this point I am in the familiar place now… in the zone so to speak… completely aware of my body and what it is saying to me… yet the world… on the outside is somewhat of a blur…. Mile 3: 7:52

Sixteen seconds… that’s the difference between miles 2 and 3… those 16 seconds get into my head… self doubt creeps in…. it does not help that this is the worst section of my route… along a fairly busy road… the legs feel heavy… I feel myself holding back… knowing that I have not just this mile… but another to run…. I check the pace often… not a good sign. Mile 3: 8:08

I’m not dead tho… and now I have but a mile to go. I have decided to use the final ~.5 mile to cool down… I don’t know what time it is but I know that I’ll be cutting it close with the wings…. 50 minutes… I just run… like it’s raceday… or mile repeats day… I don’t look at the pace… well..okay I steal a peek after 3 or 4 minutes… 7:20… self doubt jumps on my back… immediately… I feel like I can’t hold the pace… I fight through it but the damage is done… I push with all I can muster. Mile 5: 7:34

I run the last .6 with a heavy feet.. but a soul that is lighter by far…

Finish time: 46:48… I shower while the wings cool…..

non running report

Thursday night:

I ran a quick at like 9 PM….

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Weight and Fitness

today the discussion on the tri list was about weight and fitness.

I can't say too much about that.

I am, however, learning about weight and speed.

I can give you 18 reasons why I am running as fast or faster this fall as I ever have before:

Reason #1 - focused, consistent training
Reasons 2-18 the 17 pounds I have lost since May.

It is absolutely amazing.... how easy running is... and I *still* carry 199# on my 5'10" frame...

Someone asked me today what I thought about running 7:30's for a 1/2 marathon... I told him that I'm just 15# away...

Today was raceday… just me and Mark. Chris is nursing injury and sickness.

We decided to do 2 loops of racing. I gave mark 4 minutes.

I started out too fast… over redline by a ½ mile in… decided to hold it as close to that as possible and just see how long I could suffer.

When I saw 7:05 for the first mile I *immediately* slowed down… sometimes these gadgets can be demotivational. I caught myself and tried to get back into rhythm. Soon after I saw Mark ahead… I knew that I was going to catch him so I relaxed a bit and tried to push as hard as I could until the end of mile 2. 7:17 was not too bad considering… a good effort.

Enjoyed the cool down mile and nice chat.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Veteran's Day

We all had the day off yesterday. Nice to have time to do nothing inthe middle of the week.

I ran 7.4. 4 with Kara at an 11 mpm pace and 3.4 at ~8:55 pace. Felt flat and achy... probably due to the sqauts I did Monday at lunch.

Monday, November 10, 2008

in the long run...

View Interactive Map on

My run yesterday was not the positive reinforcement that I have been receiving for the past few weeks.

I ran twice on Friday… raceday with Mark and Chris got pushed to Friday which meant that, in addition to my speedwork on Wednesday I had a tempo run on Friday.

I was tired before we even started but… game on!

We did a warm-up jog of about ½ mile to our new starting point.

I gave Mark a 4:30 head start and Chris a 1:30 cushion.

I ran the first mile in 7:20. Soon after the end of the first loop I caught Chris… He was having shin splint problems again. By the end of mile 2 I had Mark n plain sight (7:40) and caught him in another quarter… then we basically shut the race down and jogged it in.

I ran again Friday evening after a quick spin on the trainer. Kara had missed her lunchtime run and wanted to get in a run. Basically a 10 and an 11.

Nothing on Saturday… did not eat well either….

I was determined to run 14 on Sunday.

Once again I ran mile 1 with Kara (11:57) then:

9:02, 9:17, 9:15, 9:13, 9:07, 9:29, 9:24, 9:22, 9:21, 9:43, 9:39, 9:38, 10:02

Caught Kara right on the 14 mile mark. Ended with 14.52

The run was hard. I tried to make it an *easy* run. The splits were ~25 sec per mile slower than the 8 straight sub nines from a week previous. I’m not going to worry about it too much. It was basically 13 miles at a 9:25 pace… but I really wanted 9:15

My Kendall Story

I wrote the following to the tri list... another listmember was dealing with a simlar accident with his daughter.

Three years ago my daughter (10 years old at the time) fell out of a tree and broke both the bones in her right arm.

We took her to the hospital. They told her that they could not give her anything for the pain until she had been x-rayed. Needless to say, she was in a lot of pain. And she cried and gritted her teeth for an hour waiting for the technicians.

They let me go back with her and sit next to her while they took their pictures. I knew that she was hurting... and that there was nothing that I could do except coach her along and try to keep her mind off her pain.

For the last picture they had her rotate her wrist so that they could get a clear view of both bones. This was the worst yet. I knew that this hurt... and I hated to see my baby girl go through this. I guess that I got quiet. She could see the tears in my eyes... just as the technicians were taking the picture she looked up at me and smiled.

There amidst all the pain that she was going through... she wanted to show me that she was okay... and that everything was going to be okay.

It took two surgeries, 7 months, and a half dozen casts later but she's fine now. With only a 1.5" scar.

I think of that moment... that smile.. a lot.... when I think about how hard something is... or parenting is...

I think of how proud I am to be that little girl's dad... and how much better a person I am because I try to live up to deserving such a kind and gracious child.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Quick update….

Raceday was fun last week… I hope that it is a launch point that leads us on another adventure of self discovery.

Although it was not a storybook race… we all laid it out on the line… and embraced our pain…

As if Thursday was not exhausting… I ended up running 6 more Thursday night with Kara.

Friday was spin class downtown…

Saturday – goose egg… zippo… and too much food

Sunday – I was amped... ready to go… Kara was going to do *at least* 10… which meant I might get in 14…

Well... she decided to do 8… I was determined to run at least 10. I ended up running the first mile with her.


Then tried to make up two miles on her in the next 8.

– The last 3 were tough. Those 2 8:30’s were a little much… they felt good but… HR spiked... breathing hard etc.

11:15 – caught her by running our loop backwards.
10:31 – .4 homes – I was cooked!