Sunday, November 26, 2006


Before the race in front of Paul Brown Stadium

Before the race looking over the river (I'm wearing the cool t-shirt T got me after the Grand Rapids HM)

Just after I crossed the finish line. Nice shot T.

T and I after the race. Self-portrait.

T modeling the t-shirt. Could have sworn it was supposed to be a technical shirt!

Thanksgiving Update

Just returned (ok, returned yesterday) from the first Thanksgiving with the family in 5 years, and the first Thanksgiving in Cincinnati in probably 10 years. First things first: it was great to see the family – niece, nephews, sister, brother (short bursts are ok), mom and dad. Sprinkle in some friends (great time Friday night Hack!) and it was a great time.

Thursday morning I ran the 97th Thanksgiving Day Race (10K) in Cincinnati, OH. It is something like the third oldest race in the country. I ran it with over 12,500 other people. It was a madhouse. Some random thoughts from the experience:

1. It was my first race of that size. I was prepared for the delay at the start. I was prepared for the bridges. I was not, however prepared for the people who decided to walk 3 and 4 across in the middle of the street. MOVE THE F*CK over to one side people!

2. It’s not supposed to be that warm (mid 50s) in Cincinnati in November.

3. I’m still impressed with Cincy’s skyline.

I wasn’t racing the race. My schedule called for a 6 miler that day so I just ran the thing. Finished in 1:04:09 by my watch and was very satisfied, especially when I checked my time from the first 10k back in 2004 (the Butte to Butte, killer first mile) and the time was 1:00:54 and at the end of it I thought I was going to literally fall over dead. All in all a good time. Nice race t-shirt even if I thought it was going to be a technical one.

Rest of the weekend was great. Great food Thursday. Great food Friday: lunch at Pleasant Ridge Chili (2 cheese coneys and an order of gravy cheese and fries) then dinner with friends at the Boathouse. T’s first experience there, and of course she loved it.

Got some Skyline on the way home Saturday. Watched some football Saturday night.

Got my 12 miles in today.

Back to work tomorrow.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Weekend Update

Week #2 of the training plan: not quite as good as week one...due to circumstances entirely under my control I pushed Thursday's run to Friday, and then to Saturday (when it was completed), and skipped my long run to spend the day with T on Sunday. I'll do better this week.

Saturday: War Eagle!

Sunday: T and went neighborhood scouting in preparation for house hunting this spring. We think we've found an area, but the process has just started.

"Casino Royale" - great movie, takes Bond back to his roots, and is much less cartoonish than the few previous. Bond actually bleeds, has scars from fights. The stunts are still "reality suspended" but it is the movies. And holy-hot-Bond-babe! See for yourself and then employ some google-foo. You will be rewarded.

Off to Cincy this week to spend turkey-day with the family. Should be fun. I'm also running a 10k Thursday morning. Yes, I'm crazy.

Monday, November 13, 2006

One Down, How Many To Go?

Finished Week #1 of my running plan. There were 21 miles scheduled, and I completed 23 miles. Completed all of my scheduled runs, PLUS worked out with T on a day that I didn't have one scheduled. 10 mile long run went great yesterday (ok, I know I'm a weirdo when I think it is a nice day to run and it is about 30 F and cloudy - but at least it wasn't raining! Or snowing, because it is Michigan after all), still need to work on my IT bands and do some stretching, but good week. Now I just need to repeat this effort.

The before mentioned workout with T brings me to some news...we joined the YMCA (cue the Village People). Great deal through GVSU and we have access to all five in the area: including the spanking new one downtown and the one right by the house (ok, so "right by" is relative, it's the suburbs so it's about 6 miles from the house).

Tension/excitement is running high here this week. All of the Michigan fans are getting their panties wet over the game this weekend. If I didn't have a game to cover Friday night, I would wear my OSU (that's OHIO State for all of you Oregonians) game jersey to have a bit of fun with people. At least I found out today that the game doesn't start until 3:30 p.m. so I will be able to watch the game after all, game to cover Saturday at 1 p.m.

Pictures from the half marathon are up on the photography service website. Please be kind in your comments.

Friday, November 10, 2006

End of the Week, Beer?

Friday Update

A lot transpired this week:
Election night – I will avoid the hot issues nationally (about freakin’ time people! And to my brother, who probably doesn’t know this exists: Good to know that your go-to-guy-in –the-clutch Mr. Rove failed miserably. Was it a conspiracy in Montana? Virginia? It was nice to see a disciple of the Republican “God” Reagan kick one of Bush’s boy’s ass, in the name of the Democratic Party. Can you say “Macaca”) and hit the highlight here in Michigan.

The city of Grandeville (approximately 6 miles from the front door, where the nice mall and all the restaurants are located) passed a law allowing alcohol sales in said restaurants on Sunday! Not that I’m an alcoholic or anything but it is ok to have a glass of wine with the Italian dinner you have out on Sunday evening.

Weather in the Midwest.
Last Thursday and Friday it was snowing. Yesterday it was almost 70 degrees. I almost wore shorts to work. Today, it’s about 35 outside. Supposed to snow tomorrow. Yeah for Michigan.

Was informed that the great state of Ohio on Tuesday passed a smoking ban in all public spaces – including, I assume, restaurants. We could only be so lucky here in Michigan. I am really tired of coming home from having dinner out and smelling like an ashtray.

Had a good week of running so far, will see how the 10 miler goes on Sunday – at least the weather is supposed to be better!

Found out my “readership” is larger than I thought (thanks Marlee)

Monday, November 06, 2006

The Road to the Pig

180 days. Roughly 6 months. That’s how much time until the Flying Pig Marathon in Cincinnati on May 6, 2007. Why is this important you might ask? Well, that is the “goal” race that I am aiming for this spring. Yes, I might be crazy.

I’ve planned out the first two months (November starting tomorrow and December) of my training plan. It’s back to basics. Slow runs to increase my aerobic capacity and slowly increasing the mileage. Should be a fun 8 weeks here in Grand Rapids as winter approaches!

The good thing is, we are probably going to be joining the YMCA (discount through GVSU – way to go T!) so I will at least have some refuge when the really nasty stuff gets here.

One of the lessons I learned from the half marathon is that I need to stick to my training plan. I really got into a bad habit of rationalizing missing runs. I need to improve in this area or bad things will happen as I get deeper into training.

Like the half marathon, I’m going to lock myself in – registering early, that way I’m committed to the race. Also it will be nice opportunity to see my parents, some friends in the area, and to meet up with some really cool people from the 30’s thread on Cool Running.

Hope whoever (still not sure who) is reading this will enjoy the journey with me. No, the blog won’t be solely about me training. I’ll throw some other stuff in as well.