Tuesday, December 13, 2011

8 Weeks Out

Today marks the 8 week point from my surgery.

I'm sure I'll have a much more definitive answer in another 4 weeks or so when I'm back running but right now I don't regret having it done one bit.  Yes it was an inconvenience but I have zero pain (even in the places I was having some discomfort in before the surgery), I'm moving freely about the world - not running yet but that is strictly a strength issue at this point, and most importantly I don't feel it shifting on me as I'm moving.  MAJOR improvement.

I'm officially building up to that return-to-running point.  30 minutes on the elliptical today at the Y.  Kicked my ass - yes, 8 weeks of inactivity will result in some major detraining, but at least I'm to the point that I can start working on my fitness level, so that when I do start running again I won't be that far behind.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Hitting "Enter"

I've got a plan in place now.  I've got the next 10 weeks planned out for my rehab and getting back to running.

That's the easy part.  The hard part is going to be getting back into the routine of getting it done.

So here's the plan for the next three weeks (sort of*):
Monday:  Rehab/strength
Tuesday:  Cardio - at least 45 minutes, I'm hoping on the elliptical.
Wednesday:  Rehab/strength
Thursday:  Cardio
Friday:  Rehab/strength
Saturday:  Cardio
Sunday:  OFF

*I say sort of because we'll be in Cincy the week of the 19th and I'm not going to have access to anywhere I can do cardio....that week will just be a rehab week.

So, I've gotten it all programmed out, now I just need to hit "enter" and run the damn thing.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Rome Wasn't Built in a Day

7 weeks post-op!  It's hard to believe that I've been out of the cast for a full week already.
  • the incision is still healing a couple of spots but looks really, really good
  • my skin is still uber-sensitive
  • it feels really, really good to scratch!
I'm making some good progress on my rehab:  my dorsiflexion is equal or maybe just a bit better than the right one and my plantarflexion is only lacking about 10 degrees.  Now that I'm able to move the damn thing and my motion is improving I'm going to be able to make some significant strides with my strength.

I just need to remember that flexibility improves day-to-day, and I must work on it daily, and strength improves week-to-week so I need to be a bit more patient to appreciates gains.  I am back to wearing my Free Run 2s so that will help with some foot strength.

Must say I'm pretty pleased with how it feels and where I'm at 7 weeks from surgery.  I just need to keep plugging away.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011


By the time you read this I will have been freed from my fiberglass accouterment.  Pictures of the scar will be posted once the freed limb has been thoroughly cleaned, scrubbed, and scratched.  Probably multiple times.

It means that rest time is over.  Time to get back to fitness.  Rehab starts this afternoon, fitness-improving activities start tomorrow morning.

The countdown to running has begun!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


Cast day 20 (8 days to go)

I can almost hear the loud-monotone-disembodied voice of the NASA countdown as I quickly approach the day my foot will be freed from its orange prison.

The nice thing is the next week should go quickly:  tomorrow I'm taking the day off work to run some errands around town and get some supplies for our thanksgiving day feast, Thursday is our feast, Friday I do have to work a bit but we're going to a hockey game that night, Saturday I've got to work but it's rivalry day for college football:  the Iron Bowl, the Civil War, OSU-Michigan, etc, etc, etc, Sunday is the Bengals game and then we're back to Monday of the week the cast comes off.

Short time indeed.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Target Set

Cast day 12 (16 remaining)

June 23, 2012 has been selected as the official return to racing for me.

Seattle, WA, for that version of the Rock 'N Roll race series.  We were already planning on being out there for a visit and thought why not...the timing works perfectly with the surgery/recovery.  Who knows some of the other KR 30s gang might show up as well.

You're probably asking why the hurry to officially register?  There was a $20 discount for registering on 11/11/11 so I took advantage.  Glad I did - even with the discount it was $91.xx!  Probably the max I've paid for a HM by about $7-10.

It's on the calendar all official and everything.  It gives me something to work towards.

Just over two weeks left until the infernal cast comes off.  I think I can make it.  I think I can make it.  I think I can make it.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Stress? You Are a Mean Son of a Bitch!

Cast Day 9 (19 to go)

We all have those days where the frustrations build slowly and slowly and slowly until they reach that threshold the pushes you into that shitty, crabby, I-could-easily-be-a-royal-jackass-right-now-but-I'm-doing-the-deep-calming-breaths-thing-to-keep-from-throat-punching-you place.

Welcome to the last couple of days for me!!!!!  Adhering to my not specific discussions of work things I'll just leave it at that....

My normal healthy coping method (drinking does not equal healthy people!)?  Running.  As we all now, that strategy has been eliminated.  Where is the fist-shaking-smiley?

Part of that stress is cast related - I'm over my paranoia that I'm developing a DVT.  I'm not.  But I'm having trouble dealing with the amount of time I have to be on my feet at work in order to effectively do my job.  By the end of the day I'm ready to cut the cast off because my leg is just worn out from walking in the dastardly thing.  Not painful from the surgery, just tired, hot, and sweaty.  Imagine if you didn't take your sock off for 9 consecutive days...9 down, 19 to go!

I know, I know...buck up camper and deal with it!  You went into this with your eyes wide open and aware of what the recovery would be!  Yes, I do keep telling myself that...every day.

9 days down, 19 to go.

One day at a time.

One day at a time.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Halfway Point

Cast Day 7

Going into this I knew it would be a six week process until things really got back to "normal".  Three weeks ago yesterday was the surgery.  One week ago I started the time in the cast - some good days, some not so good days but I have a theory about that, later.  Three weeks down, three weeks to go.  I'm pretty sure that things couldn't be going better.

My cast theory:  I'm going to spend exactly 28 days in this thing.  The first week was challenging because I was getting used to the limitations imposed on me by it.  Now though, I'm settling in to a routine with those limitations for the next few weeks.  The last week?  That's going to be tough because the light at the end of the tunnel will be big and bright and I think it will be like being 6 years old and waiting for the jolly ol' elf to arrive that special morning in December.

One day at a time.

Friday, November 04, 2011

Maybe This Won't Be So Bad

Cast Day 2
66 Days Until Running?

Wednesday was the big day.  The splint came off, the staples were removed (all 16 of them), and I got my cast put on.

The brief conversation with the surgeon went well:  everything went according to plan with the Brostrum procedure and the only unexpected thing was a bit of fraying in my peroneal brevus tendon that he was able to clean up.  He checked the repair - let's just say my ankle isn't going anywhere!!!!  Very little inversion, thanks to the modified part of the Modified Brostrum procedure where he shifted my anterior retinaculum (google it) over.

All in all he was pleased.

Now some of you might be wondering why the cast instead of a boot?  I asked in the original consultation.  I think he's dealt with some non-compliant patients in the past and now chooses a walking cast over the boot because you can't take the boot off and walk around the house before the repair is fully scarred down and healed.  Like a dumbass.  So all of us that would be compliant pay the price.  It's just four weeks.  26 days from now, not that I'm counting.

So here is how I get to spend those next 26 days:
Lovely shade of orange isn't it?

Friday, October 28, 2011

Left Side Tires Only!

Splint Day:  10  Recovery Day:  10

Days recovery remaining:  80

I mentioned my tumble into the front yard?  Well it seems that I cracked the bottom part of my splint when that happened.  So after a couple of days of dealing with a distinct "this doesn't feel right" type of feeling and my toes being numb 98%+ of the time I called the doc's office to see what I should do about it.  The asked me to come in so they could change it out for me.

So in we went.  The giant, hard plaster/ace wrap combo they put on immediately after surgery came off to reveal what the incision looked like:

My first reaction?  HOLY SHIT THAT'S A LOT OF STAPLES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My second reaction?  The incision looks like it's healing pretty well!

My third reaction?  HOLY SHIT THAT'S A HUGE INCISION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

If you so desire you can click on the pic, zoom in a bit and count at least 15 staples.  So that scars gonna be nice!  And as we all know, chicks dig scars!

Only about 5 days left until the cast.  Speaking of which, while I was there for the new splint I was able to peruse cast color swatches and I'm pretty sure I picked out the color.  Now to just start looking for a cast cover I can wear in shower.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

That Went Well

Splint Day: 7, Recovery Day: 7

Days recovery remaining:  83

Sunday I had a minor mishap.  From the time I arrived home from the surgery center on Tuesday I'd been in the house.  It was determined that the first time I tried to leave the house and make it to the car shouldn't be Monday morning when I'd be pressed for time, etc.  So, we made a trial run.  That didn't go so well.  I'll save the details but trying to navigate the self-closing front door, a couple of steps, and the knee walker all combined to equal a tumble in the front yard.  Over the front handle bars of the knee walker.  I was okay (only damaged the front edge of my splint) but I scared the living hell out of both myself and T.  Then we laughed about it and tried it again.  Crutches much easier.

It was back to work yesterday.  Not a great day back, but not a horrible day either.  I need to tweak a few things in my office so I can prop my foot up better during the day but all in all I seem to be able to function decently.  We'll see how covering events go Friday and Saturday though - that could be interesting.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Q & A

Splint Day: 4 Recovery Day: 4

This might be bordering on TMI, but I managed to make it upstairs for a bath today.  Major boost to the mood.

Sage was wondering what my return-to-running program looked like, so here it is:

We've used this protocol the last year or so with some of our student athletes with great success so this is what I'm planning on utilizing for myself.  If everything goes well I should start the walk/jog portion on January 9, 2012.  No, I don't have any grand goals for that first half marathon back.  I'm still researching what exactly my training program will look like - I'll consider it "training" once I'm back to running 30 consecutive minutes - and that will be a post on here much later.  Plenty of time to figure that out.

The other goal for the day?  To increase the time between percocets.

Friday, October 21, 2011

How Much Down Time?

Splint Day: 3, Recovery Day: 3

Monday, October 24 is when my time table starts.  Why Monday?  The goal for this recovery/rehab process is to be ready to return to training for a spring/summer race in 12 weeks.  84 days on the injured reserve list or until Monday, January 9, 2012 to be more exact.  Not that I have it planned out or anything.

Why that day?  Well that gives me the perfect amount of time to train for this race in June 2012.  6 weeks for a return-to-running program and then 18 weeks to actually train for the race.  Ambitious?  I don't think so but then the approach, for now, is to just be able to get back out there.

The first 6 weeks of this process will be easy.  Not much to do but wear the splint right now and wait until the cast.  I probably need to start thinking about what color cast I want!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

On a Scale of 1-10

Splint Day: 2, Recovery Day: 2

The nerve block is about 90% gone - just a small numb area behind my knee - and I'm able to wiggle my toes now.  So that's a good thing, the bad thing?  The discomfort has started to kick in.  Discomfort.  Not pain.  Maybe that's due to the percocet?  Probably.  But it's not nearly as bad as I was anticipating.

Still trying to get used to navigating around the house with the splint.  The knee walker is much, much easier than crutches so that helps but it's still a challenge.

I'm taking my aspirin like I'm supposed to be, icing (not really sure just how effective icing my popliteal space is but still following instructions), and I'm a fixture on the couch.  Twelve more days until the cast.

On the fun side, the Star Wars Blu-ray marathon has begun!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Recovery Starts Now

Splint Day: 1, Recovery Day: 1

The last month has been a whirlwind...from my Dad passing away and all the family drama/stress that comes with that type of major life events, running a half marathon (Grand Rapids of course) after less than ideal training (see the first item in this list), to yesterday and the Modified Brostrum Procedure on my left ankle.

So the title of this post really encompasses more than just the healing process going on in my foot/ankle right now.  Healing my ankle, getting past the loss of a generation of the family, getting things back on track. 

The nice thing?  I've got plenty of down time coming my way.  At least the next 4 days on the couch.  Plenty of time to put the plans in place for a full recovery.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

6700 Mile Service Appointment

Ugh...what a fortnight.

I'll go into some of the gory details later but let's just say that the last 14 days have not been to kind.

First, I rolled my ankle, then I had an urgent trip to Cincinnati (that part will be later), then an early departure back to Grand Rapids so I could keep an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon.

That's right, surgeon.  Not for an athlete, or T, but me.

It took him about 2 minutes of doing a physical exam, stressing my ankle before he agreed with me that I need a Brostrum procedure because my ankle is trashed.  The stress x-rays only made the diagnosis easier - let's put it this way:  I'm one awkward step off a curb from a fracture-dislocation.

Surgery is scheduled for Oct 18.  22 days from now.  Two days after the Grand Rapids Half Marathon, which I'm still running but thanks to all of the recent upheaval I doubt will be the kind of effort I was hoping for back at the first of June.  Oh well...more important things on my plate now.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


It hit me a couple of weeks ago as I was sitting at soccer practice watching the new freshman descend upon  campus in droves as they moved into the dorms.

20 years ago I moved to 219 E. Church St, Oxford, OH 45056 to start my freshman year of college.

No idea why it resonates with me that way.  Maybe because those four years in Oxford living in the Evans Scholar house were some of the defining moments in who I am?  Probably.  I just know that seeing those kids unload their cars hit me like a 2x4 and caused me to think back on those times in ways that being at my 20th high school reunion didn't.

Just seems like yesterday though.

Thursday, August 04, 2011

A Sign of the Apocalypse?

One of the few positives of being a professional vagabond over the last 16 years is that I have friends/colleagues all over the country working in various settings of athletic training.

One of those friends sent me an email with the subject of "WTF?" yesterday and after I stopped laughing I just have to share it (names/details have been changed to protect the stupid):

Subject: book list

Hello, my name is XXXXXX XXXX and I believe you are my adviser. I am interested in majoring in athletic training and am looking forward to starting college this fall. As I have registered for classes already, I assumed that I would be sent a book list by now or would have been able to find it easily online. I do not want to order books though the school and would appreciate it if you could send me one or tell me where to find what books I need. It would also be appreciated if you could get back to me by Friday morning because I am leaving this weekend and will be out of town until right before coming to school.

Thank you for you help,


What's wrong with this email you may be asking?  Let me list the reasons:
  • This was sent over the summer, when my friend isn't in the office since it's summer!
  • Why would this young person believe that just because they were randomly assigned to my friend as an adviser that they would be provided a list of needed books?  Oh that's right because every other summer of their educational life they've been given a "Back To School" supply list!
  • Why would their randomly assigned adviser know what classes they've registered for?  Why would their randomly assigned adviser know what books are required?  How do you find out that information?  That's right, attend class the first day and read the goddamn syllabus.
  • To me the best line is "It would also be appreciated if you could get back to me by Friday morning because I am leaving this weekend and will be out of town until right before coming to school." because it shows how this generation of children (because while they are trying to be adult-like they're clearly still a child) expect instant resolution to things.  It's absolutely ABSURD to think that my friend is going to even respond to this email
To all my friends who have children:  Please stop creating children like this. This is just one example!  Another is the college kids I deal with who are unable, or unwilling, to be active participants in their own health care decisions!  If you're a college senior (21 or 22 years old) you shouldn't need a parent to hold your hand when you see a doctor about your sprained ankle or when I ask you to contact a physician you've seen in the past to obtain a copy of your records and you look at me and say "I'll ask my mom" it takes every ounce of my self control to not punch you in the face.

We as a society are doomed I'm afraid.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Marking Time

July seems to be the month of anniversaries.

Our wedding anniversary, T's mother's wedding anniversary, the anniversary of losing a friend, and this one: 5 years ago we arrived in the mitten.

The place has, and continues to, grown on us. It's not perfect, but it's not as bad as originally thought.

The mitten does now have the distinction of being the place we've been in the most, so that must be saying something!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

8 Is A Good Number

Eight years ago I made the best move in my adult life.

I married the best woman on the planet.

We've had our ups and downs, good days, bad days, but not once in those 2920 days have I regretted saying "I do".

Thanks love...

Friday, June 10, 2011

Getting My Ass Handed To Me

Summer cold, 2011 version.

Seems to be like clockwork, every summer I come down with a cold.  Usually I handle it pretty well - take some sudafed (the real shit, and thanks to all you meth-dick-heads that make it extremely difficult to get now), blow my nose a couple hundred times and I'm good.

Not this year.  This cold came to me via T.  She had it last week.  Started Monday for me and it has knocked me to the curb.  I've taken more tylenol in the last week than I have probably in the last 5 years.   I've taken a nap a day.  I never nap.  Really hope my immune system kicks in because I've got a busy weekend/first part of next week.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

No Days Off

A conversation with one of our distance runners last week got me thinking.  I was trying to impress upon him the importance of taking advantage of the summer to develop good habits so that those habits will carry over into the fall.  One thing I was trying to get him to do was to spend some time each day addressing areas that needed work, one of which being he needs to utilize a foam roll to alleviate some soft tissue problems he has developed.

Me:  Do you have a foam roller?
Him:  No, but I've got a Nalgene water bottle that will work.

Part of me smiled at his resourcefulness...for about 2 seconds and then the rest of me got pissed off.  Why you ask?  This is why, and almost word for word what I told him:

That's bullshit.  You'll spend $100 per pair of shoes that last at most 3 months, if you're lucky, but you won't spend $25 on a foam roller that you will use for the rest of your life?  Even worse you'll spend way more money than that this summer on beer!  Stop making excuses and do what you need to do to be a better runner!

Then I recently watched a video on www.mobilitywod.com and it hit home that as athletes (and we are all athletes whether we play games, run races, etc - we all lift things like groceries, we all move our bodies up and down obstacles, stairs, etc) there are no days off.  We may not have a workout that day but we have to hydrate, we need to use the foam roll, we need to do our stretching, we need to eat better, the list goes on and on.

No days off.  We have to be focused on achieving our goals and doing all the little things everyday that will get us to that achievement.  Stop making excuses, stop whining and focus on what you need to do.

The hard part?  Listening to my own advice.  But I'm trying.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Not My Smartest Move

I'm a big fan of Vern Gambetta.

I've used his leg circuit progression with my athletes for years with great results.  As part of my "back to basics" theme for the spring/summer I'm doing the routine myself as a way to build some strength to help me as I get into what I hope will be some significant quality training in preparation for the Grand Rapids Half Marathon in Oct.

What I should not have done though is this:  do day 1 of the routine and then immediately go for a 5 mile run.  Holy rubber legs Batman!  This morning?  Legs.  Trashed.

The really funny part is that T tried to tell me that it wasn't a good idea.  Need to learn to listen to that intelligent woman.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Back To Basics

Spring sports are officially over.  Well, there is one last very small track meet Wednesday night, but only a small portion of the team will be competing.  Then it's time to close everything down, finish up paperwork, treat a few track kids who qualify for the outdoor national meet and get ready for the summer.

Life is much less hectic now.

Which is why I'm using this time to my advantage.  Adding some things back into my daily routine, or more aptly put:  getting back to my daily routine.  If I can manage to establish the habit now things will only get better and easier as the summer progresses and when things crank back up in August it won't be as hard to deal with.

At least I hope!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Good Start

Monday if my start to the week, and this week is off to a pretty good start.

A) Since I work at a catholic affiliated institute of higher learning today is an day off.  Now I'm going in for about an hour at 3 p.m., but that really doesn't count.

2) Despite being knocked for a loop by the sinister spring cold yesterday I got out there this morning and made up my long run.  12 miles total with two 4x5 minute tempo paced portions thrown in.  I wasn't able to hold the pace and my heart rate was over 190 on the last so I pulled the plug at that point.  Still a pretty damn good run especially when you factor in the sudafed (the real stuff, that PE shit is for losers) I'm taking so I can breathe.

III) It's the next to last full week of spring sports.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Only Fitting

Since April has felt more like February it's only fitting that a cold wallop the crap out of me this weekend.

Really, really looking forward to May getting here.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

That Didn't Last Long

Due to the fickle nature of Mother Nature and how she has been treating the mitten this spring last minute changes in the spring sports schedules have wreaked havoc on my running schedule.

I know, I know...I've mentioned it before that I need to take care of my stuff first, blah, blah, blah but last week it really was beyond my control and I was forced to miss a run.

So the 100% goal for April is kaput.

Now the goal is to complete as many as I can with the amount of April left.  Just about six weeks to Bayshore.

Friday, April 01, 2011


The goal for the month of April is an ambitious little bitch:

100% completion of all workouts (runs, strength, everything on the plan).  Which means I'm going to have to hold myself accountable here.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Spirit of Radio

Begin the day with a friendly voice
A companion, unobstrusive
Plays the song that's so elusive
And the magic music makes your morning mood

Off on your way, hit the open road
There is magic at your fingers
For the spirit ever lingers
Undemanding contact in your happy solitude

Yes, I'm a Rush fan, but this isn't completely about them.

I've been running less and less with my iPod lately.  With the snowpiles in the winter around here sometimes cars don't see you until it's really too late so that time of year runs are music free.  In the summer I try to limit the iPod to runs over an hour.  Partly from the hassle of one more thing to take on a run, partly to save my hearing.

But sometimes music is a requirement.  Bad day at work and there's anger to run out and there is nothing like having the iPod there.  Long runs and a podcast or a audiobook.

I've run many miles with my iPod and now some songs are linked to runs and specific routes:

Rain on the Scarecrow - Heading east on the Fern Ridge Trail from our apartment in Eugene.

Chloe Dancer/Crown of Thorns - Waiting for my garmin to synch and starting a run from the apartment in Eugene.

Blue Sky - the ends of longer runs around the apartment in Hudsonville.

Allison Road - the bike paths along the Willamette River.

I Disappear - speed work in Riverside Park.

A Beautiful Life (live) - starting early runs in the summer from the apartment in Hudsonville.

Sometimes I need the music, sometimes I need my thoughts but I like having the option.  So thanks to Mr. Jobs and Apple for making it convenient.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Reading List Addition

The Emperor of All Maladies:  A Biography of Cancer

Read this book.  We all know someone who has battled this disease.  This book gives an interesting look into how the "War on Cancer" is waged, the people who shaped it, and where it might be headed.

It can be scientific at times, but not so much that the average person won't understand it...well worth the effort in my opinion.

Friday, March 04, 2011

At Last!

Spring break is officially on here in the mitten.

These 9 consecutive days off from work every March is one of the top two "perks" of my job.  (Quotations are used because that's sarcasm.)  It is, however, nice to have the break after the madness that is winter sports to recover and to prepare for the absolute looney bin that spring sports will be when the games start.

Plus it affords the opportunity to head home and see my Dad.  It's rough time of the year for the family as we approach one year since my Mom passed.  Not that getting all the family one room will be harmonious and good times...nope.  Awkward silence, superficial conversations, anger, and hurt feelings will most likely be on the menu.  But it's family.  You do what you have to do.

That's the first few days, after that?  No plans.  Maybe see a movie, go to a museum, read a book or two, being a lazy ass and leave a KP indent in the couch...anything is possible!

And, it means only 8 weeks until the end of the school year...not that I'm counting or anything.

Friday, February 25, 2011


I'm home alone this weekend.

The wonders of technology:  watching a movie on the computer (Good Will Hunting kicks ass.),  various tunes from my iTunes library, and reminiscing on the last 4.58 years by going back and looking at my blog.

Wow, have things changed and time flies even when you're not having a lot of fun.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

And It's Back


Snow returned Sunday.  About 12".  Another 1" or so last night.  Forecast calls for another 5" (approximate) between tonight and Sunday.

There's no way this is all going to be melted by the 16th when spring sports start having home games.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

A Small Reprieve

Mother Nature took pity on The Mitten this week.  Temps soared on Thursday into the low 50s.  The massive mounds of snow melted and for the first time since Jan 1, 2011 we can see the ground.

We'd better enjoy it, because in less than 24 hours were supposed to get another 6-8" of the white shroud.

BUT, I took advantage of the break to get some quality runs in outside this week:

  • a workout of 3x1000m at a goal pace of 8:36 on Thursday - hit 8:16, 7:51, and 8:00 for those.
  • a long run today of 2x10 min at tempo pace - goal pace was 9:20 and I hit 8:58 and 8:48.
I know, I know - might need to rethink my paces there.  That's on the goal sheet for sometime in the next couple of weeks.  Some sort of time trial (at least 5k) to not only gauge my current fitness but to see just how much I need to adjust my paces.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Woooo Hoooooo!!!!!

It might only last a few days...okay, it might end tonight, but the weather here in this part of the mitten is unbelievable today!

Temps are in the low 40s and the sun is out.

Perfect conditions (minus the at times stiff breeze) for a run.  7 glorious miles with T today.  Felt great to be out there.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

One Day At A Time

Great TV show I know (okay, great may be taking it a bit too far), but no my focus with this one.

One day at a time versus the big picture?

I've got the next 16 weeks or so mapped out via my training plan for the half marathon at Bayshore Memorial Day weekend.  But I think sitting back and trying to look at all 16 weeks is too daunting - especially when I start to realize just how busy my spring is going to be thanks to an unmerciful spring sports schedule.  I'm trying to figure out long runs, workouts, peak mileages, etc, etc. and in the process I'm losing sight of the fact that I need to run "x" miles today.

So I'm trying to change my focus a bit.  I'm only looking "big picture"-wise at this week with my focus being on what I have to accomplish today.  How many miles are on the schedule today?  Is it an easy run or a quality run?  When am I going to run?

I'll worry about tomorrow (when it will then be today) and I'm going to focus on today.

Friday, February 04, 2011


Dear Readers:

Please let me know through the comments if the current color scheme (mostly the background and text of the posts) is easy/hard to read.

First of the Year

First book done.  You can see it over there on the right in the 2011 Reading List.  It took me a bit longer than I'd hoped but it was worth it.

On to The Emperor of All Maladies!

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

We Made It

Survived, no thrived through the Blizzard of 2011.  Lots of snow on the ground here in the mitten, but at least most of the afternoon we've been under a brilliantly blue, sunny sky.

It did however give both T and I a snow day today, which was utilized to clean the hell out of the house, do laundry, fold laundry, and shovel snow for approximately 1 hour (and mucho thanks to the friendly neighbor who cleared the sidewalk off the entire block with the snowblower...we might still be out there if he hadn't).  Hell, the city of Grand Rapids has already plowed our street!

So back to work tomorrow, but today was a good day.

Monday, January 24, 2011


I received this cookbook for my birthday - Good Eats:  The Early Years and its follow up Good Eats 2:  The Middle Years for Christmas.  What can I say, I've always been a huge fan of the show and the Mrs. gets me.

But why am I telling you this?  Ask yourself this question:  Of the cookbooks you have on your shelf (come on, you know you have more than one and less than 10) how much do you use them?

I've used those at least 4 times in the last month and all of the recipes were phenomenally tasty and easy.  Not necessarily simple, but then like Thelonious Monk said:  Simple ain't easy.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Tough Week

Sleep has been in short supply around these parts.

T was in Texas visiting family before the semester started and was due to arrive back in the mitten Sunday afternoon...flight canceled.  Nothing like a text message at 2:35 a.m. telling you that bit of news.  Eventually arrived home just after 11 p.m.  In bed after midnight.

Up early for work on Monday.  Up late Monday night watching Auburn win the national championship (War Eagle...sorry all of my Duck fan friends.  Nothing personal.)

Up early Tuesday to visit the dentist.  Was told I "have good teeth."  Nice.

Tuesday night was later than usual due to seeing "Hood to Coast."  Phenomenal movie.  Highly recommend it.

Wednesday up early for work - have to be here at 8 a.m. instead of the usual 10:30 a.m.  I know, rough, but it's all what you're used to doing.

By 5:00 p.m. yesterday I was a zombie.  T felt the same.  Solution to the problem?  Sleep.

Lights out last night at 8:30 p.m.  Thank you ambien for an uninterrupted 10 hours of sleep.  Actually feel like a normal human today.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

That Time of Year

January.  Fresh pages on your calendar.  Packed to the gills fitness centers/YMCAs/gyms, etc as everyone has made their New Year's Resolutions and goals for 2011.

I've made some myself.  I have a mileage goal (1500 miles) for the year, but more importantly this year I've made goals that will help me get to that big number.  I want to run at least 30 miles each weak (which would give me 1560 miles) and I want to run at least 140 miles each month (which would give me 1680 miles)...you get the point.

I've got other goals, some that will make it on here, some that won't.

However, as you finalize your goals for 2011, it is only the second week, I would like to leave you with a quote:

It's not about goal setting, it is about goal achievement.  Anyone can set goals, few are willing to do what it takes to actually achieve them.

This was a tweet from Vern Gambetta, a very wise man.

2011 isn't about setting goals...it's about achieving them.  That's the hard part.  It's about being willing to go to bed early, it's about not having that third, or second, or even first beer, it's about turning off the TV and getting something done.

What are you willing to do in order to achieve your goals this year?

Thursday, January 06, 2011

I Just Don't Get It

NBC's "Biggest Loser" just had its 11th season premier Tuesday night.  I've watched some of the show in years past (the amount of tears/crying/whoa-is-me was the biggest turn-off for me) but honestly I do not understand the appeal of the show.  Plus when you factor in the controversy from a few years back about the marathon-than-wasn't-quite-26.2 it's really not a show, or a concept that I really want to support by watching.

But you know what?  I think the whole concept is flawed.  It should be easy to lose weight when you're in an isolated environment, healthy food is provided, and the only thing on your appointment sheet that day (and for every day for several weeks) is to workout!

I know they send the finalists home for a number of weeks and the ultimate winner is the one who keeps losing weight and loses the most percentage of their starting weight.  Great, give that person some prize cash!  The winning amount, I think, is $250,000.  Give that person $25,000.  Then have another weigh-in in 6 months.  The "biggest loser" then should get $75,000.  Then have the three come back another 6 months later for the last weigh-in...and give that person the last $150,000.

Because shouldn't the focus of the show be who can maintain the healthy lifestyle the longest?

It's all smoke and mirrors and Hollywood hype.  Thanks, but no thanks.

Saturday, January 01, 2011


I was pleased a few weeks ago when the University of Pittsburgh decided to relieve my alma mater of her football coach.  Despite the improvements in the win-loss record this year I was never a fan.  It was just something I couldn't put my finger on...was it the embarrassing losses this year to sUCks or Ohio?  Probably.  Or was it the stories of inappropriate behavior I heard when he was an assistant coach at Ohio?  Maybe.  Was it that I felt he wasn't the head coach Miami needed after the disaster of the Shane Montgomery era.  Definitely.

It's also hard to stomach someone preaching discipline and class and then seeing that person arrested for domestic violence.  Good riddance.  I just wish that ESPN would stop showing him wearing Miami gear as they discuss him getting fired by Pitt.

On the the Treadwell era - who was a great assistant coach at Miami when I was an undergrad and working with the football team as an athletic training student.  Go RedHawks!

Clean Slate

Four years and a few months.  A couple hundred posts.  Time for some changes.

You'll notice the name change as it reflects a change in mindset.  I'm not sure Michigan will ever truly feel like "home" but it is turning out to be one of the longer resting spots in this life's journey.  No, I'm not changing the picture (I just love The Sisters) so don't even ask.

I briefly contemplated not blogging anymore...but then things happen and my brain starts working a bit more and I want to get some things out of the old headspace (gotta make room for new stuff!) and this is the perfect place for those.

I've taken some steps to be a bit more organized.  I recently created one of these.  Not as a planner, or a journal/diary, but more as a place to jot down those things in my brain and to help organize them before some of them end up here.

I'm also going to try and expand some of the topics that show up on here - not that I've been imposing restrictions but there have been some areas of this life that I'm sorta passionate about that haven't made it on here.  Yet.

This year.

Because 2011 is here and as that calendar page turns over to January everyone gets a clean slate, a blank page to fill in the goals for the upcoming 365 days.

This is one way that I'm trying to start fresh with my own clean slate.  A new look, some new things but the same old KP.

Happy New Year.