July 14, 2014

Hike: Tunk Mountain

 A short Hike on Friday in Hancock County, Maine. Tunk Mountain

A fun 3.8 mile hike with some good elevation gain that we've missed in Michigan. Good to see some friends as well.

July 11, 2014

Standing still, but still flying

Oh look at that time just flew right on by.  Another couple months just gone in the blink of an eye.

After Kalamazoo and Martian Marathons I took a step back and made it a point to recover and mentally rest from hard training. I think it's vital to take a step back (not forced) in order to take a couple of steps forward.

With only a 132 miles in April and 125 in May I felt ready to go come June. As stated earlier I wanted to focus on some speed this summer with primary intentions of breaking 16:46 at some point. Ambitious? Maybe, but some speed on the track can't hurt marathon training. 

During June I introduced some track workouts. Primarily 400's and 800's with some 1000's sprinkled in. All at or near goal 5k race pace. In order to run fast you need to practice running fast. Fun time really.

With the introduction and steady influx of speed work on a weekly basis, mileage has dropped for sure. I went from peak marathon training 50-65 mi/wk to 30-45mi/wk. You really start to feel fat and lazy...I sure didn't though.

In late May I started on crew with 3Disciplines. What a blast that's been! Among one of the top management companies in the country: As of January 2014 They have produced 460 events and timed and consulted on another 450+ events; including Regional Championships, World Junior Qualifiers, the best state series around. They were the first to start the triathlon revolution bringing triathlons to Tempe Town Lake in Tempe, AZ. in the spring of 2001 right in the middle of one of the biggest cities in the U.S. Hosting what was then the largest and fastest growing events in the country, Tempe International Triathlon and SOMA Half Iron Triathlon; both attracting well over 1800 athletes each year. In addition creating another incredible mecca venue in Austin Texas hosting over 1000 athletes each year. They have hosted events in 11 states including running, mountain biking, road racing, triathlon, duathlon and adventure races.

I have the opportunity to travel to far reaches of Michigan, Ohio, and Illinois, with opportunity to travel the country soon enough! How the heck and I supposed to train!?

It's venues like this in Ohio. It's a blast waking up at 5am, running totally lost but exploring every inch of road. It's brought some new adventure to running that's for sure.

I've only raced once, and it was just a 5k. The results?

17:00 (16:59.7 chip time =0 )
2nd Overall

I was ecstatic to break 17 even though it was by the smallest of margins.

Next up Moxie Days 5k! Past results indicate some excellent depth (10+ Sub 18 finishers) so hopefully some fast kids show up and make my day.

May 5, 2014

Kalamazoo Marathon - A slog fest finish

My adventure continues. Took a little ride down the highway to Kalamazoo, Michigan. Yes it does exist, in fact there are 3 or 4 other cites named Kalamazoo across the country. This is my race report on how to run a 3hr Marathon when apparently you left common sense back home.

The whole write up starts out good, but dives bomb at the end.


A mere 23 days before I ran the best marathon of my short career thus far, Martian Invasion. I was in total awe of the performance days after, still riding the high. 

I didn't run much that week after, as I let things heal up. Mostly it was a tight knot in my right calf that was still being troublesome. I managed 9 runs of varying miles, nothing spectacular.

The week leading up to Kalamazoo was of course of heavy workload. We planted 3,000 + trees and shrubs for a wetleand restoration project Thursday and Friday. that left me soar. Ouch.

I arrived in Kalamazoo mid-day Saturday, still soar-ish. Hit the expo, and ventured my way around town looking for a place to run and shake the legs out. I managed to find the Bike path and get 4 miles. This was also part of the marathon route. Enjoyable run, mid 50's plenty of wind.

Stayed with Andrew from Ellsworth, Maine. Great to be with someone back from home and just talk about all the amazing runners who are up and coming back in Maine. Andrew had lofty goals to improve upon his BQ time, and after the horse race an beer, he was sure that something great would happen tomorrow. (little did he know he would perform exceptionally by running with the 3:30 pace group through 25 miles)

Race Day: 

Weather was predicted to be mid 40's and breezy. Breezy was an understatement. Before the race started, one tent blew over that hadn't been tired down yet. Luckily no one hurt.

The hotel served a simple breakfast and somehow Andrew and I managed to grab the last bagels at 6:15am. A cup of coffee and off we went catching the shuttle from the hotel to the race site, how easy! Loved not dealing with traffic and parking headaches. 7am, I bought a snickers cause my stomach was still hungry, nerves setting in, feeling cold and breezy.

8am: Gun goes off. A good group takes off down the straightaway. I glance down at mile 1 and see I've gone out waaay to fast. (jeeez, I think to myself that felt easy) Well yeah! Felt easy cause we were going downhill. Pulled up to a young woman who was looking for sub 3:10, we chatted for a sec but she was smart and dropped back. What did I do, pick it up...so stupid. (6:17, 6:13)

Stupid was the statement of the day. It felt easy, but I was by myself, running into the wind, going uphill, and still clicking off faster mile splits than my PR marathon a couple weeks ago...(6:16, 6:19, 6:13)

A long gradual climb at 9 miles was a bit of a wake up call, the wind kept hammering, or so it felt. Probably only 15mph, but it felt like i was constantly running into the wind.  A quick loop through a college campus on relatively flat roads made it for a quick mile, only to return down that long hill i came up (6:20, 6:13, 6:09, 6:22, 6:02)

At this point (10.5ish) I passed Andrew and must have gotten some pop in my step. I was 1) passing people running in the other direction, which was nice to see and 2) gave a couple of high fives and finally it was mostly downhill. Downhill and adrenaline you ask? Fast mile splits. stupidly fast. (6:17, 5:59) I'm pretty sure I got down into the 5:30 range...I didn't look.

Things started to get lonely at this point. Running through neighborhoods, with rolling hills. Passed the half way marker in 1:21:41 ish (6:04 mile)

Out of no where I come onto a street packed with people and i get a whiff of something I never thought I would see or smell on a race course, BACON!? They were handing out bacon. Sticking it in my face, I frowned, stuck my head down and blew past em, ready to hurl. (6:17)

More lonely streets, more wind. No idea where I was but I trusted the cones. "Downhill mile coming up, than your almost there" an officer quips. Indeed it was downhill but fuck don't tell me I'm almost there..10 miles to go can be a long hour (or more in my case). ( 6:11, 6:07)

At mile 17 something changed. Mentally I didn't care any more. I'd like to blame it on the hills and wind early on but surely that wasn't it. Running alone for so long and running stupidly from the first mile. Yes that was it.

All I wanted to do was run a 3 hour marathon nice and easy. Why the hell go and dig myself into a hole.

From 18 on it was a true slog fest. Every 1/2 mile or so i walked. I walked through water stations, walked with walkers, got passed by people i had passed earlier. It was mentally all a game as my legs weren't arguing at all, it was all in my head.

17: 6:28, 18: 6:28, 7:38, 8:16, 7:59, 8:34, 7:52, 7:52, 8:59, 8:37

That my friends is no way to run a 3 hour marathon. That something like 16 minutes SLOWER the second half.

I guess i was due for a bad marathon after 4 or 5 straight good ones.

Final results:
8th overall
1:21:4x- first half
1:38:xx - second half

The plan now:

I'll be working with an even management company (3 Disciplines!) this summer, so i'll get to travel a fair amount and train in some sweet parks and cities. Heading to Ohio and Illinois just this month alone! 

I'd like to run come 5k's and possibly 10k's this summer. I'll be backing off on marathon training for now, and focus more on speed. 

Chicago will be next. Expect something big.  Expect nothing but the best.

April 14, 2014

Martian Marathon - Go Big or Go Home


I signed up this past December with the intent of focusing on getting back in shape after much of the summer and early fall my running was lacking by using the Martian Marathon. I missed my favorite race, MDI, for out of this world amazing reasons, but I felt like something was missing from my life after all the craziness died down in November.  

After past half marathon performances of 1:19 and 1:18 the past couple of years I know I had more than a 2:52, and many friends said the same. It was a matter of becoming focused on 2:49 and nothing else. Stop thinking about just going after another personal record, and do some real damage. Go big or go home. 

Part of my preparations leading up was for the weather. I overdressed the last 2 weeks to aclimate my body. It sucked on some runs when temps reach into the 40's (That warm considering we've spent 30+ days below zero and countless others below 20) but it paid off when temps reached into the low 50's near the end of the race. 

We arrived at the hotel a bit late, but I still managed to get in a short shakeout on the hotel treadmill. Just enough to feel like a runner. A great dinner was the highlight of the night. When we arrived at the hotel a fraternity reunion was taking place. Hundreds of guests there for the festivities. Sleep and me just weren't meant to meet that night. Music thumping, phone calls, friendly and not so friendly requests to keep it down kept me wide awake through much of the night. I think it holds true that the night before a race doesn't really matter, within reason.  

The race had a very early start time of 7:15. The coffee shop in the hotel didn't open till 6am. I was concerned, but we bugged the lady and she was nice enough to get us in and out in a couple of minutes before 6. Being a small-ish race with staggered starts for all 4 distances, (26.2, 13.1, 10k, 5k) we  got preferred parking, steps away from the start line, and most importantly no porta potty lines!
The Start. Picture Courtesy of RunMichigan.com

The Race

In all honesty it was hard to gauge what the depth of the field would be like. I toed to the line at 7:10, temps in the mid 40's light wind. In my mind perfect. I knew it was going to warm up so I chose not to wear anything like gloves, or arm warmers cause they would just be a hindrance after the half. That's a major regret as my hands didn't work very well at some points.

National Anthem. On your mark. Boom! We were off, a slight uphill start for the first 200m, with a quick right turn immediately into neighborhoods. 6:22, 6:22. Perfect I thought to myself, felt very in control. Running with two other guys, one wanted a sub 3 and the other probably 2:4x.

I didn't pay much attention to splits during the first couple of miles, but by 5 miles in when glancing down I noticed that we (still with those 2 other guys) were clicking off some effortless miles. The course ran through neighborhoods at this point, all was quiet except for the pitter patter of our shoes and some light conversation here and there. A couple of guys by mile 7 had dropped back or out for good. That put us in top 5 (as a group). 6:15, 6:20, 6:14, 6:15, 6:18.

Feeling pretty good at mile 8 I told the guys that I was going to back off a little. I didn't want to dig myself into a hole that I couldn't climb out of. They nodded, one dropped off and the other guy picked it up and by the next mile had about 30-50 yards on me. I was by myself now. 6:12, 6:08, 6:07

So pace wise things didn't slow down much, effort wise it felt easy with so so labored breathing. Around 9.5 we turned onto the out and back portion. The road, closed to traffic, was wide with slight up and downs with many flats. Earlier the two guys I was with talked about this hill at around 12 or so miles. I don't recall anything but a slight change in grade for maybe a quarter mile or so, nothing serious. A clock displayed the half time,1:21:50 it read as i cross the timing mat. I tired not to panic. "Stay relaxed, just stay with that guy in front of me. Don't you dare decide to back off now." 6:08, 6:07, 6:12 (1:21:50 half) 6:05

Still only 40 yards or so in front of me at mile 14, I was slowly able to reel in the guy ahead of me. The turnaround soon after 15 put me within 10 seconds or so of him. He may have backed off, or I caught him, but by 16 we were running together. This was what i need to continue to run well, someone to keep my mind off the creeping pain in my calves. We chatted, but mostly remained focused on the task at hand. 6:03, 5:59, 6:08, 6:12

All this time my hands were frozen, temperatures were slowly rising but my hands had really not improved much. At each water station it took a little bit more effort to grab the cup of water and cup of Gatorade. At mile 19 I took my last Gu (previously had taken 1 @6 and @9 ), before the water station. Serving marathoners coming in the opposite direction, no one on our side, no big deal. I was able to grab hold of a cup, but it didn't stay in my hands for long. I burst at that point. Turned around and ran back the 30 yards to grab another knowing I need a little water to make sure the GU was absorbed. Gathering myself and just relaxed again into the pace. By mile 20 I was able to catch up to the guy I was running with. 6:14, 6:10.

10k to go. "Only 40 minutes, we've done this in training. I feel pretty good. Good luck dude (fist bump)." Masses of half marathoners were running on the opposite side of the road. At 23, the lead half runners passed me (they ended up running Olympic qualifying times 1:11 or something). They looked smooth. I felt like a Rhinoceros trotting down the road.  6:12, 6:14, 6:19

5k to go. "It's a freaking 5k, holy hell get moving. Come on legs." Now truly  by myself after dropping the guy I was running with, I was alone on a bike path, peaceful, but hell it was hard. My calves were getting tighter, and I'm sure at this point I wasn't relaxed. I refused to look down at my watch, I didn't want to know how close or far I was from breaking 2:48. Would I be able to get under? Miles 24 and 25, 6:31, 6:39.

*Side note: I really was thinking about only breaking 2:50, I apparently can't do math after 20 miles or so, or my brain just chose to ignore how fast we were going.I knew where I was at halfway, well below 2:50, but I really thought I may have really fallen off pace during the last 5k....

Just before the final turn. Picture courtesy of RunMichigan.com
I nearly broke down and walked as the bike path ended but I started to recognize how close I was. A small (felt like 100 feet of climbing) climb, much like coming through the tunnel onto the incline before Hereford Street on The Boston Marathon Route met me right before 26. It was miserable.  6:47
Photo courtesy of Brittany. 

The final turn, 300m to go! Legs had nothing, felt like I was barely moving. Tunnel vision.

150m. The clock read 2:44:3x.


Sub 2:45, overwhelmed I just kept walking back and forth, ready to keel over; I didn't have much to say, just relishing the moment. In total awe.....

Marathon # 8
4th Overall, 2nd AG

April 7, 2014

Comparing Marathon results

With 7 marathons under my belt, comparing results is rather hard to do, but I wanted to take the time to compare my best marathon, Boston 2013 to other results. Looking mainly here at first and second half results. From my first MDI in 2010 I've slowly progressed never taking more than a few minutes off my personal best. I could question training, or weather, but I think it comes down to how I run the first and second half of the whole Marathon.

First off, I'll throw out Boston 2012 as temps reached into the 80's, and training all winter long in New England didn't even come close to allowing me to run faster, although some of my friends were still able to run stellar times.

I can honestly say I've toed to the starting line prepared for each marathon, getting in long runs, marathon pace work, and running more mileage each time around. Ignoring the aftermath of Boston 2013, weather was perfect.

What's optimal for one person is certainly not the same for the next. For instance going out too fast, or putting time in the bank as some would say, can cost you. Running a marathon, is like walking a tight line, one misstep right or left and you immediately fall off. In the marathon as you approach half way and beyond, adjusting for mishaps in the first half can be nearly impossible.

DateMarathonFinish TimeFirst 1/2Second 1/2DifferenceNotes
6/2013Bay of Fundy2:56:27No watch, no splits
5/2013Fredericton2:54:261:26:411:26:55+:14Ran with friends
4/12Boston3:29:001:30:581:54:55+23:57Into the boiling pot

What does my 2014 Martian Invasion hold on April 12th?

April 2, 2014

Shamrockers run for Gold 5k

T-Minus 10 days ( Wednesday April 2nd)!

Last year I ran a 5k about 2 weeks out from Boston, it was a good tune-up. In all honesty it's nice to run something faster than marathon pace or half marathon pace. It feels good to have both the lungs and legs burn.

 After looking around for something local, Shamrockers run for the Gold it was! Just a small town race with only 30 people.

For the second time this march I was so scatter brained before leaving. First it was my racing shoes at MudDogs, this time it was a watch. I felt lost, but I was also reminded of the importance of running by feel.

Warm up consisted of running the course to check it out. A short climb at .75 to 1 mile than 1.5 to 1.75, some icy patches from melting, but mostly clear pavement!

Kyle Kiel 16:56
Eric Mauricette 17:02
Gabe Hawley 18:47
Jon Baughan 19:38
Douglas Brown 20:18
Tom Harbaugh 20:55
(F) Holley Carson 21:11
Keven Carnson 21:17

Had I known I was so close to breaking 17 I would have pushed a little harder. I haven't run sub 17 since trying out for the UMaine Cross Country team in 2009, where I ran 16:46. I was a little heartbroken when I found out, but I'm pleased with where i'm at. 

March 25, 2014

The MudDogs Half Marathon

Traveled an hour and half south, to where most of the snow on road ways has melted, to Mount Pleasant. A half marathon is like a right of passage for this time of year. Usually a good tune up race, I try to train right through a solid race about a month before a marathon. In this case it aligns nearly perfectly.
About the one mile marker. Photo courtesy of The Winter Warrior Series FB page.

My last 4 weeks have been 62, 63, 55, 55. I'm pretty pleased with the consistency and where the workouts are at this point. I just needed some reassurance that things have been going smoothly even though a lot of running has been substituted on the treadmill because of this harsh winter. 

I wasn't disappointed, clearly I'm where I should be.

I arrived an hour early, grabbed my bib and proceeded to relax and get organized. The race venue was held at a local bar, with 10 or so full wall TV's, while people were mingling, I took care of my warm up. 3 miles around Central Michigan College. Quiet at 8:30 in the morning, I found solace on the open pavement. Upon my return to the car, there was clearly quite a crowd for this race as the huge parking lot was pretty much full.

In my utter confusion and scatter brained self, I didn't put on my racers like I would have for any race, and by the time I realized I was over at the start doing strides. Legs felt good. I was ready to go.

Miles 1-3: 
It was a mass start of the 5k, 10k, and half. Quite a few college aged kids shot out fast, and I just settled in behind. Two guys turned around at 1.5 (5kers), another was by himself  with a good 30 sec lead on us at 2 miles. At 2 miles I was with 3 other guys. Around 2.5 we turned in the wind and settled in just working with was was given.

Miles 4-6:
Faster miles mostly because we turned with the wind at our backs. The group of 3 pulled ahead of me like 5-10 sec, I felt it was just a bit too fast for me, I mean i was clicking off 5:5x's. The 10ker had turned around somewhere near 5k mark all by himself. It was just the 4 of, wind to our backs and mostly clear dirt roads.

Miles 7 and 8:
Another turn around put us back into the wind, a cross wind. At this point I could see i had about a minute on the person in back of me. I just tired to settle in after the turn around and not loose much to the guys in front of me. One guy dropped off from the other two and fell back to me. Another turn around and we were on our way back.

Miles 9-10.5
These were definitely the toughest miles. The guy I caught up to had dropped off, so i was left alone to battle the 15mph winds, and gusts. Miserable is how i describe it. Lost a lot of time to the two guys in front of me.

Miles 11-13.1:
I made a quick glance back at around 11. I had 10 sec or so on someone, and he looked smooth. He managed to pass me soon after. I didn't fall apart at the end like I thought i might. I held it together, and fought the wind to the bitter end. The guy that passed me beat me by 10 sec, the top two were a minute ahead.

4th OA
2nd AG

A solid race to tell me where I'm at. 

26 days. The bulls-eye is starting to slowly come into focus.

68 miles this past week with the race.  

March 6, 2014

The Sweaty Runner

Across much of the eastern United States we've experienced some of the coldest and most harsh weather in the past 30 years. It hasn't been all that fun for us runners, never mind those people who work outside nearly everyday.

I think I did fairly well through December and January where, here in the Northern Lower Peninsula we saw 2 feet plus of snow and daily negative degree windchill. I motivated myself enough to take the pup out day after day braving the subzero windchill's, but it reached a point where I was wearing 15lbs of clothing. 

I'm not saying I dislike winter, it's a great time of the year, but this winter in particular I have really started to cringe. I watch the weather every morning and it just sounds like a broken record, "More cold weather headed for northern Michigan, sub-zero temps, and blustery wind...." blah, blah blah..Enough already!

So I found solace on the treadmill, or dreadmill whatever you want to call it. I've learned to embrace. I gave in and bought a gym membership so I could continue to work on speed, and tune into my marathon pace. I also been able to catch up on TV shows, like Burn Notice, Breaking Bad, White Collar, House of Cards and some older shows like The 1400....Ok you see where this is going much of my running time has been spent on the treadmill.

It got me wandering today. Do people really want to see ME? The sweaty runner by 30 minutes in, continue to plod along for another 30-60 minutes. I mean I know I sweat a lot, and I think I sweat even more when I'm inside under conditions of 70+ degrees with nearly no air flow, this runners got a marathon coming up, give me a break! 

Puddles form, yeah it's disgusting. I do my best to wipe up after I'm done, but I think those gym rats are still staring at me, thinking to themselves, " WOW! Disgusting. How can someone let themselves get so out of control?"

Ehhh, whatever. Gym rats can suck it!

Wait am i now a gym rat?

 I did 13 miles on the treadmill today. It was a great workout, with marathon pace miles, and half marathon pace miles. Yes, I was coated in a thick layer of sweat, but it felt good. 

The way I see it, my body is pretty efficient at cooling itself, I may look disgusting, but when you see a smile on my face after an hour or more on the treadmill, you might just want to look the other way, cause I'll be back again soon for another heart pounding workout soon enough!

So embrace the treadmill, ignore that sweaty runner next to you, and RUN MORE!

February 17, 2014

Alpenfrost Frosty 5k

February 8th,

February started off with a bang. 

The local town holds a Alpenfrost festival which celebrates winter, and gets people out of hibernation (at least for the night). Part of the festivities include the Frosty 5k, which indeed was very frosty!

Light winds, and air temps hovering at zero degrees made it for a very chilly morning. Snow covered roads, sunny conditions contributed to what I thought would be a slow time.

The start, good crowd for a chilly morning.

I went in with low expectations, as my heel has been bothering me, and I really didn't know what kind of shape I'm in. Figured I would got out hard and see how the road conditions dictate my pace.

Mainly it was a solo time trial from the beginning. Someone went with me for about 25 yards than quickly decided it wasn't a good idea. It was just me, the pitter patter of my icespiked shoes, and the revving of the police car in front of me. I was able to use the car to pull myself through the out portion. It felt easy. 

The back portion was a tad uphill, still snowy roads, and slightly breezy. Not a hard finish, but certainly made my legs remember that they haven't had much speed lately.

3.05 mi
Splits: 5:39, 5:40, 5:43, :11

Spent the evening at the Beer and Wine Festival. Delicious. This may be cutting into my training. So many craft breweries in Michigan, I have my hands full!

The massive ice ball below was made by a local I work with, and I helped gather ice and build. Took 2 chainsaws, 5 people and like 14 man hours to put this 7' tall ice ball together. Fun time. 

January 21, 2014

1.13.14 to 1.19.14

Another week passes by in the blink of an eye, well I guess I wish it would have. Although I'm still taking a class online, and i'm not working that much, when i do work it's pretty strenuous work. Wednesday and Thursday I spent walking through the woods, not  all leisurely and skipping around. I'm talking about walking for 6 hours with a gallon of paint in a backpack on snowshoes in 2 feet of snow. It was work. Solid work. = Sunday (and Monday of this new week) I spent 7 hours each day removing snow from a roof. Talk about consistent strength work.

Anyways to stop my bitching and moaning, my point is this. Should I count those walking miles as a workout and log it just as I do with any run? These walks are no walk in the park, no pun intended. After 6 hours and only getting roughly 3 miles in, I'm pretty wrecked.  No worries though my running streak lives on.

Monday: 5 miles easy. Enjoying the warmer temps (mid 20's) finally. Core work post run.

Tuesday: 10.1 miles moderate. Snowy and icy roads (pretty much all roads I run on) made it rough to get good traction. Got a few good splits in. 67 mins total.

Wednesday: Knew i was in for a long day, so i got the workout in first thing. 2x3x2:30 downcycles, which consist of getting faster every 30 seconds. Did this on the treadmill so i had more control over pacing and footing was much better. Excellent tempo work. 10 miles. PM consisted of 3 miles of walking (which is accurate, since we knew the lot we were on was a 1/4 long). 13 for the day

Thursday: 7.2 easy. tired legs, which means the workout and walk yesterday did there thing. At least i know I worked hard. Short core session before heading into work PM 2 miles of walking again on snowshoes with paint. May have been more, but I'll under guessitimate.  9.2 for the day

Friday: 7 miles easy. A down day finally. Long core session afterwards

Saturday: Instead of being stupid and trying to race when I know i'm not quite ready I set out on snowy roads, with snow coming down, for 15.2 miles. Spent about 1/2 mile on snowmobile trail, than got some faster splits in ( Miles 10-12 in 6:25, :25, :29). Felt comfortable hard, close to MP maybe?

Sunday: Holy crap. Arms nearly fell off. Raking two feet of snow for 7hrs is my yearly arm routine. Managed a mile easy walk with the pup.

Running miles: 54.6
Walking miles: 6
Core: 3 times
Streaking days: 39
Marathon day: 80 days to go.

January 12, 2014

1.6.14 to 1.12.14

A good start. That's what I think about the first 12 days of the new year. My running has been consistent thus far, and I've gotten at least 2 core session in a week. I'll probably keep saying this, but consistency will be key to move forward this year. I'm hoping I can turn this marathon cycle into a building block for the fall and into next year.

The weather, much like the rest of the country has been pretty wild. We started this past week far below zero, with one hell of a windchill. By the end of the work week we'd finally reach the 20's and this past weekend we got rain and in the 30's. It's was so good for the snowmobile trails, nor the roads. I tired to get out yesterday, but sliding down our driveway I knew it wasn't going to be smart. Today (Sunday) turned out beautiful, but most side roads were still covered in solid ice. I opted for the treadmill. 

Monday: 6 easy miles. Calves pretty soar from the weekend. Took it easy.
Tuesday:  Calves better. Soughout the treadmill to get a workout in as the roads are constantly covered in snow/ice. First 5 easy, 8x1min @10.1 mph. 2 minute rest @ 8.7mph. 9 total.

Wednesday: 9 easy. went without the dog and I felt like i was dragging the whole time. Probably a sign i should run more without him. Felt shitty the whole run, felt like i was coming down with something. When i got back I took a high dose of echinacea tea, vitamin C (like 1000mg), and lots of water.  

Thursday: 3 miles of walking through 2 feet of snow at work. HR was pretty high. I called it day. Feeling better  for sure, but something still lingering. 

Friday: Started work later which gave me time to get my workout out of the way. Too advantage of slightly warmer temps (high single digits, it felt GREAT!) and got a solid fartlek in. I said solid because it was a true speed play run. When i felt recovered from my last bought I went hard again. Ten different boughts of speed varying from just 30 seconds to nearly 4 minutes. Good stuff. In the PM I got 2 miles of walking again through the snow. (10.6 for the day)

Saturday: Sometimes your just feeling lazy, plus sheer ice across the driveway and roads kept me confined to snow in the woods. Should have gone for snowshoe run, but it didn't happen. 1.2 miles for the day.
I have to add it was worth staying up till 11 to see the Patriots pound the Colts. What a running game. 

Sunday: Even though it was a warm day out, the roads were still in very iffy conditions (they can't plow roads for shit here, or maybe they choose not to waste the money as they have none). Anyways, 15 miles on the treadmill (fun!(sarcastically)). After the first 6 miles I tired to throw a few  strides in to get prepped from my marathon pace work. I quickly found out the treadmill I was on didn't go any faster than 9.0 MPH. "WTF? WTF?" So there i was cranking out 6:40's for the last 8 miles. After 98 minutes the bloody treadmill decided to crap out on me. Apparently it can't count any higher....PM 3 miles easy with the pup. Road was slushy. Once it freeze up, and it will, its going to be a mess and probably pretty dangerous. (18 miles for the day)


Miles 56.8 miles.
2 core/stability sessions.
89 days till M-I Marathon
30 days of streaking so far.

January 7, 2014

New Year, hopefully not the old me


Everyone comes into the New Year with lofty goals. Loose X amount of pounds, or read this many books, go to this place or run x amount of miles. Don't get me wrong, goals and aspirations are motivating and it helps people to continue to excel or start a new page in their lives, but will I?

Ok, so 2013 running wise wasn't what I wanted it to be. I really laid down some concrete goals for 2013. I just couldn't make them happen. It was as if something was holding me back I just haven't reached that point yet.

  1. Run 2500 miles...Didn't happen. I just lost my motivation and drive over the summer, especially after US Mountain Running Championships. 
  2. Run sub 2:50 marathon....This continues to haunt me. Boston was close, but no cigar, and much to do with summer and fall happenings, a fall marathon just wasn't in the books. 

2014 - The year of  running improvement?

So what does the New Year hold for me?

Not so much so far.Just lots of expenses, headaches, and still not a steady job. A new car battery, new tires, and now backing my jeep into a tree (stupid move). Good news, I've finished all my Forestry classes, now for Physics and Chemistry. I question my sanity and what i'm about to put myself through..

On the running front I'm going to lay it down. I've got numerous things I'd like to accomplish. 2014 will be focused on 3 major things all incorporating, what i think is the foundation to running, Consistency. 

 Run More

I started 2013 with the 100 day streak with Crow Athletics. Here I go again. Day 7 and already 55 miles in. It's a start. This year I'd like to average 50 miles a week. That would put me over 2500 miles, which would be a leap from past years, but certainly possible. Consistency. 

Improve by Stability and Core

This should be a given. I know I perform better when I've spent weeks working on core and stability and not neglecting it. It just so happens that winter is the perfect time to focus on it more because we spend more time indoors, but it should never be neglected, as it holds us upright. Plain and simple. 3x a week. Consistency

Goal Race Times

Yes, I have a few scores to settle with a few race distances.  It's been some time since I've run a true 5k, or for that instance a race in general ( I did race this past weekend, I'll tell y'all about it soon).  I'm going to settle into Marathon Training much like many people do this winter. Come spring through summer I'd like to focus on some shorter distance races and not get caught up in tackling 50k's at this point. Come Fall, possibly another Marathon, but getting after my half personal best seems enticing. so here we go.
  • 5k: 16:44 Yes, because my pb is 16:46.
  • 10k: 34:5x I'd really like to get under 35, with some work I know it's possible as I've run 35:23
  • 1/2 Marathon: 1:16:xx
  • Marathon: 2:49:xx - This really should be all that hard as past half marathon times have indicated I've got it. I just need to saddle up, get on the bandwagon of 6:29(ish) pace and DO IT, no more monkeying around. April 12. 94 days. 
Consistency I believe will be key throughout the year, as it always is. Here's to a new year! Make 2014 YOUR year!

January 1, 2014

My 2013 Running in Review


2013 makes six and half years of running for me. I can remember when i first started out. I was that normal high school kid. Shorts over the tights, cotton t-shirts for nearly every single run, and shorts nearly year round (ok maybe not so...). As 2013 comes to a close, a new chapter beings. Moving to Michigan in October has rejuvenated my running  as I suffered over the summer months. 

I started the year practically limping my way through miles. I managed to start streaking on January 1st, but it was pitiful.  My inspiration came when Gary Allen started his Maine 2 DC trek (Now preparing for ME2SuperBowl, talk about inspiration!). I was able to start accumulating miles, and get out and have fun running again. I'm sure that pleased everyone that was around me. 

Finally I was able to whip myself into shape  for the Boston Marathon in April. Although the events took place overshadowed many triumphs that occurred, it's still one my fondest memories of 2013. Running it in 2012 with the 80 plus degree heat made me hungry for something better. I knew I was capable of it, and sure enough I came out with my personal best of 2:52. 

Coming off the high of Boston, and pent up hatred of what happened, I lost focus of long-term, and kind of let loose. I'll be honest it was stupid and probably is key to what ruined the rest of my summer. Three marathons over a 77 day period (does this qualify for something?? Oh..right stupidity). 

I didn't recovery well  as less than a month later I was running the US Mountain Running Championships. That blew my legs off, and my running continued to falter. It wasn't so much injuries as just never fully recovering mentally and physically from these races. 

I ran 15 races in 2013, which accumulated to 180 miles in 20 hours and 20 minutes. 

My graph

Nothing too spectacular, except noting March was by far my most running miles in one month.
My graph

I'm slowly starting to dig myself out of the hole and get into decent shape. Fun note of the day, my RHR (resting heart rate) was  47 bpm this afternoon. Which suggests my body is slowly coming around.

Total Miles: 2,165.8mi in 272 hours, 44 minutes, 49seconds or about 11.3 days of running.
5.9 miles/day average
Lifetime Miles: 10,878.5