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

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Pulling a Klingerman

My old boss. and former (current?) listmember Gary Klingerman used to do point to point runs when he and his family would go somewhere across town. I always thought that sounded fun but... a bit messy.

Yesterday I had a chance to try it.

My parents moved to Jacksonville last year and bought a house with a pool a few miles from my house.. As they had invited us over for dinner last night it afforded a prime opportunity.

I was hot yesterday... not sure of the actual data to back it up but it was warm... I spent the entire afternoon outside... yard work... washing both vehicles (Suburban and Tahoe)

At about 1645 I finished my chores... changed clothes... and set off to Grandma's house.

I was not really sure how far it was... but I did know that I had less than an hour to get there because mom said supper would be ready at 1800 (okay she said six o'clock)... I thought it was 4 or 5 miles... so I set off.

I really like running in quiet low-traffic areas. on trails or asphalt... I avoid sidewalks. redlights. etc. well this course was not for me.

The mile was on Tiger Hole Road... Not too much traffic but no shoulder or sidewalk... I'd taken Sunday off for some family time and it felt really good to be moving.

The next two miles was on Bowden Road which included 4 redlights and passing underneath I-95... It's such a pain to try and time a road crossing... looking over my shoulder to see if anyone is making a turn into my path...

The next mile took me up and over the railway lines... a decent sized bridge and 4 or 5 more redlights. this was about the time I realized that it was *definitely* more than 4 miles and I would be cutting it close to make it on time.

Almost every step so far had been in the broiling afternoon sun and I was running due west with the sun in my face to boot... Finally at around mile 5 I took a turn which gave me a little relief from both... glorious shade... what I did not remember and therefore did not expect was the ½ mile of false flat uphill. ..I could feel that I was at my limit but.
A. I was having fun
B. I was running late
So I soldiered on.

Finally I took the fork in the road that put me on a straight shot to their house... I could soon see the road sign that sits in front of their house... I knew that I should probably do a cooldown but my mind said... "That road sign is the finish line. don't back off" so I pushed all the way.


I'll try to beat that next time.

In the pool for 5 minutes. dressed and right on time for dinner.

Monday, May 18, 2009

BFAST Sprint Tri Race Report - the tourist

How can something so familiar be so different?

I toed the line at this race for the first time 10 years ago… and I’ve done almost all of them (it’s a three race series) since.

For only the second time, however, I’d be racing age group. The previous time I’d raced age group was to race my (then) boss head to head… now… for the first time I *had* to race age group as opposed to Clydesdale because I no longer qualified…

“Well that’s totally cool” you might say and… I’d partially agree… fact is, however, I’d gotten used to getting or at least competing for hardware.


The Swim:

It’s an ocean swim, and that’s really my only strong suit in swimming… the ocean is my friend… and I’m normally pretty good at navigating the breakers, spotting the buoys, and swimming a straight line in a choppy surf.

Yeah… I said normally… you see… I’d not placed a pair of goggles on my head since July of last year… and when I dove into the first wave, my left (buoy sighting) goggle half filled with water. The swim course was open box shaped… quite frankly I’m not exactly sure how I got from point A to point B. I think ended up swimming something shaped more like a house…

I was happy to get to the beach:

The Bike:

As soon as I clipped in… it was, as my redneck friends say, “on like Donkey Kong”.

The racecourse is a kind of out and back with a bridge in the middle. You non-flatlanders might call this a small hill… We are looking for KOM points.

I’ve pitched shutouts (not been passed) in this race more times than not in years past… but that was not that big of an accomplishment when I started in the next to last wave (just ahead of the novices) and I was one of the slowest swimmers to boot. Going off in wave #2 would make this a bit harder. All the way out to the turnaround, I passed a steady stream of riders. I knew that I was pushing it but… well it’s a race, right?

A mile or so past the turnaround… just as I was going through a roundabout, it happened… a guy on a Cervelo… Zipp wheels and aero helmet passed me… hmmm.. I thought I might have to let him go… not two bike lengths later a lady sped past too… great… chicked to boot..

They did not zoom on by but I did back off all legal like… We leapfrogged a time or two… then we hit the bridge…

I figured the two skinnies would leave me on the uphill… and they were both ahead of me at the base… I just kept spinning and upshifting… I felt a little rub, so I touched the front shifter and “clink” into the small chainring… didn’t mean to do that… nothing to do but pedal faster… so that’s what I did… at about 110 RPMS the rest of the way up the bridge… I passed both of the skinnies and gapped them pretty well by the top.

I went screaming down the other side as fast as my 194# would propel me and never saw either of them again… I think Cervelo guy is in the distance in this picture:

The Run:

So… I get of the bike and even have a (for me) excellent T2… I hit the run and…. Mo is gone…

I, once again, rode a little too hard and was feeling a bit crappy… but that wasn’t it… I was in tourist mode… just running along…

like it’s a long training run or something… I was not racing anything… trying to PR… racing anyone… or for any hardware… so I just ran… I even stopped to pick up a pair of sunglasses someone dropped and turned them in to the aid station… at the run turnaround I snapped out of it a bit and chased down a few runners on the way back in

Well… I guess I’ll be back next month to try and run the tourist version of me into the ground.

Friday, May 15, 2009


I got an email from an old friend today remeniscing about the days when we were young.. and worked construction all day in the summer... then went to my house to play hoops on my 8 ft goal... we lowered it so we could dunk like the pros...
yep... that's me in the candy striped dolfin shorts... the other dork is Casey Weldon. He went on to play football at FSU and the pros.

Thursday, May 14, 2009


Saturday will begin my 12th triathlon season…

It’s hard to admit how poorly I perform in transitions after all these years and all the races I’ve done.

I want to do better, and to this end I have set aside 15 minutes or so tonight to do a little practice. J

Now for my delimma:

Running Shoes – I have for many years run with OTC orthotics (Downunders)

They work great and have for many years with the exception being when I don’t wear socks. They are slippery on the bottom and if I wear them w/o socks my feet tend to slide slam into the toe of the shoe.

I have some options:

1. Just HTFU and wear my regular shoes.
2. Wear a pair of old Nike Velcro strap running shoes that I wore last year… they aren’t too bad… just fugly…. Look like the shoes James Bond wore in Moonraker.
3. Put the original footbeds in my running shoes.

I’m not sure how many of these I can fit into my 15 minutes tonight… Any advice?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009



In a single breath my training for the weekend was over…

I didn’t crash my bike… or twist my ankle… but it was over all the same.

I slowed down… dropped my focus… I’m sure I slumped my shoulders… turned off my iPod. I knew I had about 10 seconds to compose myself… to go from the serenity of training… and being in the groove… to anger at dropping my workout goals… and finally to being a nice and supportive partner…

I fall in next to her…

“What’s wrong?” I ask

“I suck”, She answers.

“No, you don’t. You just rode 50 miles pretty strong and you are running at what… like a 10 pace now?”

“I just suck, I can’t keep up”

I started to ask her just why she felt the need to keep up in the first place

I decide that silence is the best alternative…. Oh, silence, and running with her… my plans of lighting it up for 4 miles at an 8 minute per mile pace were over.

We ran together for another mile… I told her again how strong she rode etc… but inside I was still unhappy… she told me she wanted to cut the loop short and head home earlier than last week… she then told me that I could run the regular loop if I wanted but I was far too deep in my martyrdom for that… so we ran two and walked a half home.

We’d had a nice 50 mile ride… 17ish average… We rode the powers Ave to Mandarin to Fruit Cove and Durbin route…. Basically the same as the week before but with a lollipop loop at the end….

I had paid close attention to my heartrate… knowing that if I go over a certain number it’s too much for her and she’s off the back… Beautiful morning, almost no wind… traffic wasn’t a problem either… The only real problem was my mouth… I’d had a toothache for close to a week and I had woken up with it hurting a bit… and the ride made it no worse… but no better either… I contemplated whether or not to run at all… but, since my legs felt good… and with Mother’s Day looming I thought I’d best get in the mileage while I could….

I got off the bike ready and raring to spread my wings… to take off like Wiley Coyote when he got the Acme roller skates with the rocket boosters…

As usual, my transition had been a bit slow…. And my little blonde partner had left a minute or so before me. That’s okay. It’s better to just pass her than it is to start running with her and dread the awkward moment when I tell her that I’m running ahead.

I always try to figure out a way to loop around and run the last mile with her… as kind of a cooldown… so we can finish together…

About a half mile in I caught her… I slowed a bit and asked her how far she planned to run… she said “Oh, you aren’t ready to turn around now?” in a kind of kidding way… but she was not about to budge on an actual answer… she did, however, pick up her pace… I ran with her for another 100 meters or so and asked again “you running the same loop as last time?” Her answer was “I don’t know”….

Man… nothing… she’s not going to give me much to work with here… I casually say…. “I’m going to run a little bit different loop”

truth is… my plan is to run 4 miles to her 3… I can do it… but I’ve got to hit the gas… my plan is to turn two blocks after her turn from home and do an extra loop that will add a mile and still dump me off about a half mile from the finish for the aforementioned cooldown.

I stated to pick it up just a little… She falls a step behind… then two… 10 meters… then 20…


Monday, May 4, 2009

Weekend... and scary traffic

Brick Friday Night - 25/3

We did a few intervals on the bike. Mostly with a tailwind. Hit 30 mph a couple of times.

Felt really good on the run. Mile 1 was a 9:15 or so and managed a 6:59 for mile 2. Sometimes coming off the bike... when I'm warmed up vs tired.. I can really fly (well in a relative sense). Cooled down on mile 3.

Saturday we got up early and left the house at 0715. The goal was to make our way to Durbin Crossing in Fruit Cove and back. This required navigation of the Philips/University intersection and a left turn at the base of the bridge onto Powers Ave... pretty busy even early on a Saturday but we made it through unscathed.

We had a nice ride through Mandarin... pretty much zero wind. Crossing the river from Mandarin to Fruit cove wasn't too bad but crossing the busy 4 lane highway to make a left onto Bishop Estates sucked. Add to that the fact that I was on my Tri bike which I hadn't ridden in almost a year... I'm not quite so comfortable on it in traffic.

The scariest part was yet to come... We were tooling down Bishop Estates... which is right along the river... canopy road... decent road surface... we round a corner and see a big group headed our way... looks to be the A group from Open Road (a local bike shop). Big group fills the lane... before I get a chance to check out their bikes or anything... I see a Green SUV headed my way... She was trying to pass and headed right for us... well we ended up stopping and pulling off the road... To her credit the driver slowed to a stop as well... albeit in the wrong lane.

Once that little fiasco had been avoided the worst was over... This route is really nice except for 3 intersections... about 1 mile total of scary traffic... in a 50 mile ride... but that 1 mile might lead me to drive 20 miles to somewhere safer to ride.

Sunday was a wash... literally... washed cars and went to the beach... no training. I also checked off my most dreaded task of the year... taking my 15 yo daughter bikini shopping...

I did manage to sneak in my long run at lunch today... 10.5 miles in 1:36

Friday, May 1, 2009

April Totals

Swim 0 miles

I did think about swimming a few times... even asked a swimming related question on TRI-DRS... I tried to do some lower leg stretching too

Bike 442 miles
Run 101 miles

Total training time (weights etc included) 2535 minutes

My goals for April were to ride as much as possible, run more than 100 miles and train for over 2500 minutes.


ORN: 8 miles yesterday including 4x1mi @ ~7:15