Thursday, October 29, 2009

Barefoot Running, Halloween Candy, Pain in my leg, Halloween Costumes

I've a lot of ideas today so I'll just spew out what's on my mind.

Barefoot Running
It seems that this topic comes around from time to time. I've wondered if barefoot running would be of value to me. The Vibram footwear looks really interesting but I'm not sure if it is of any value. There is a NY Times article about this issue. It seems the jury is out. I've read a few blogs where the runners swear that their stance and gait is better when they run barefoot on occasion. I've wondered if it is just psychological or if it would really be effective.
I was at my favorite running store the other day with my wife getting her some good running shoes. I saw the Vibrams, but I wasn't willing to pay the money to test out something that may be a day whim and that's it. So, I bought me a new pair of Mizuno Waveriders. Does anyone run barefoot or tried the Vibrams?

Halloween Candy
I bought more Halloween candy yesterday. This is one more reason why running is good. It offsets the Halloween candy that I consume before Halloween. I could wait and pick through my kids candy, but I find it easier to just buy what I like throughout the season and then stock up for all the kids in the neighborhood. I've wondered if I have a mini snickers bar before a race if that would accomplish the same thing as a GU would. Maybe I'll test that theory out at the upcoming Thanksgiving 5K. Yesterday was National Chocolate Day and I bought stuff to celebrate the day and didn't. I guess we will honor it tonight. Far be it from me to miss and important holiday.

Leg Pain
My leg is hurting today. I've come up with a few possibilities. 1. I ran 7 miles last night with two at a really fast pace 2. I ran last night with new shoes with two at a really fast pace 3. I've been pushing too hard and last nights 7 miles with two at a really fast pace did me in. 4. It's the weather, I've now got arthritis in the middle of my leg and I should stop running now because eating Halloween candy is much more fun than working off the Halloween candy.

Halloween Costumes
What's everyone doing for Halloween and what are your costumes? Here's the breakdown for my family.

Myself: It's been a struggle. Back in July my thought was to go all out and be "Teen Wolf" (yes, from the 80s movie...look it up if you're too young), then it was Professor Snape from Harry Potter (but my hair just doesn't grow fast enough and I'm not into doing a wig), then I was going to scrap the costume idea until I came up with the great idea. I'm going to go as a runner who has been run over (by other runners). I found this great website on making fake wounds so I found an old tech shirt and will have some foot prints going up the back of it with road rash on my arms and face. I'm looking forward to it.

My wife: Thanks to the above mentioned website, she is going as a zombie

Kid 1: No idea...he's 18, moved out and probably won't do anything.
Kid 2: He's going as Vince the Shamwow guy from the infomercials. He gets a kick out of them and was saddened when Billy Mays died. We found him a bunch of cheap kitchen gadgets that he is coming up with new names for them. He's got a Halloween party he'll be.
Kid 3: She's going as Alice from Twilight...her favorite series every (our copies are trashed from her reading and reading and drooling and drooling). The school sent out a notice saying no face paint so she's rather bummed about it.
Kid 4: Nascar driver the day after a horrible accident. She found a small leather jacket (like 4 sizes too small, but it works), has cut out various logos, found a arm sling, a walking boot brace for her leg (goes up to her thigh) and then will have various scrapes and wounds. We did her costume for her dance class last night and she freaked out a few people with the wounds.

That's it for today. Have a great day. I'll see if I can get some pictures up once Halloween is over.

Monday, October 26, 2009

All Synced Up

A few weeks ago I bought an iPhone. I have been coveting one since they first came out but the features of the phone didn't measure up to the cost. I have had a blackberry for the past two years and have been pleased, but hated the tiny screen. The iPhone kept calling to me "....big screen, touch screen, cool factor..." and I now have one.

Now my problem seems to be that I am out of sync. I have my desktop computer which holds my main files, programs, etc. with the external hard drive. It also contains my itunes. I have my laptop which I run next to my desktop and use when I visit clients or travel. It also contains itunes. I have an ipod which holds the songs from my itunes. Now, I have a iPhone which has itunes and is synced to my laptop. Unfortunately my laptop, desktop, ipod and iphone are not all friendly with each other. It is like all my computers and accessories are all from a very co-dependent family. My desktop spawned all these creations, but they have shunned the parental figure and gone off on their own.

I won't even get into the fact that my desktop computer has multiple accounts on it for the kids and they too have added to my itunes collection (thus the reason why Miley Cyrus is on my ipod).

How am I going to get these devices to all speak to one another again. I fear it may have to resort to me sitting down and centralizing everything. For now though, I'm just going to stay the co-dependent parent of several hi-tech devices.

Tomorrow we're in for rain and snow. I'll see if I am sufficiently dedicated to run in the non-pristine conditions.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

New shoes

My son decided about a month ago that he would get more serious and train for the upcoming Thanksgiving Day 5K. Last year he ran the race and did well for his first 5K. This year he's anticipating a better finish. I told him that I would cover 1/2 the race entry if he could show me that he can do 1 1/2 miles (by the early registration deadline) without stopping otherwise he was on his own for the race fees. He's 13 and earns enough that asking him to pay $6 for his registration fee is not asking too much.

He hit that mark on Tuesday and did 1 1/2 miles. It also happened to be time for him to get some new shoes. He had some asics that he wore down to nothing over the summer (a week long scout trip killed them off). I had a $10 off coupon to Fleet Feet from the 10K on Saturday so we headed down to the store.

Low and behold he has now wearing a size 7 mens shoe. I was a little surprised that he had grown that much. I also had a bit of sticker shock knowing that he is now wearing a $100 shoe instead of a $45 shoe. At first he was leaning toward the asics like he had before, but then he tried on the Mizuno's and made that instant connection. He's only 2 sizes away from my shoe size. He's decided that he's built for running and wants to eventually run a half marathon with me. I think I better start training harder so that he doesn't pass me by too soon.

I also get to make an addendum to my previous post about the family not desiring to come. My wife reminded me that she was driving our daughter to her class and I didn't give her any detailed directions on the start/finish.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Oktoberfest 10K race

Fabulous race. The start was above a park so I did a few laps to warm up. It was definitely cold this morning. Frost on the ground and the sun not up yet at the start....brrr..

There were about 200 total runners. I saw a collection of various marathon and relay shirts. A few in the crowd were part of a 10K training group while others were experienced and had on their "game face". It looked to be a great race. I saw a few people in the race that were familiar and chatted with a couple that run on occasion with the Saturday group.

The first couple miles of the course were relatively flat with a slight downhill from miles 3 to 4.5 and then an incline the last mile and a half. The course ended in the park which had an extremely steep entrance.

My pace stayed pretty true between 7:30 and 7:15 pace throughout the whole course. By mile 5 I knew a PR was in sight. I just got to keep moving and give a little push at the end.

The first couple miles my hands were really cold and then my arms got cold. At mile 3 the sun got over the mountains and the houses and really warmed the area up. I debated wearing my jacket and I'm glad I chose to leave it at the start or I would have been too hot.

I finished the course in 45:39 which is more than 4 minutes faster than the 10K I ran in March. I must be doing something right to shave almost a minute off my pace. Alas, no raffle prize, but a medal and bragging rights. 1st in Age group, 15th overall.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Fabulous Weather

The past two days, the weather has been fabulous. Highs in the 70s, cool in the morning. The race tomorrow should be a great one. I did a good 7.5 on the Treadmill at the gym. The kids have been working on training for a Thanksgiving Day 5K. I got in about a 1/2 mile on the track with the girls and then finished the rest on the treadmill. I'm looking forward to the race to see if I can get a new PR on a 10K. The first 3 miles is slightly downhill and then 4-6 is slightly uphill.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Oktoberfest 10K

The 10K is this Saturday. I printed off the map a few days ago and ran the course. It is a flat course and should be a fun race. The sponsor is the running store that I visit regularly. They are also offering a 15% discount on anything in the store for racers so I may see if there is something on clearance that I could use.

They are also raffling off a couple pair of shoes. I'd love to add another pair to my current rotation. I pick up my bib and stuff today so I'll be able to see what the competition is like.

I should be able to beat my last PR. One nice thing about this race is that I am faster than I was when I did my last 10K which also happened to be my first 10K. Currently I am working on building my base mileage. I spent some time after the Top of Utah marathon talking with some elite racers. One common thread among them all was to build the miles. Until I am consistently running 6 days a week and in the 60+ miles per week it won't matter how much speed work I do. This week I am on track for my first week of 6 days. The past few weeks I have let other things get in my way of accomplishing it.

I have also hit that point in my running/racing where the family is no longer planning on joining me at the finish. There are pros and cons to this. Pro is that I won't have to worry about meeting them somewhere. Con, no one to hold my stuff.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Rewards for Running

I've been pondering on the current health insurance debate going on and I've devised my own strategy. I believe it is about time for the insurance companies/government should start a runner rewards program. The plan is relatively simple:

• Gain points for every mile run
• Use points for either reduced premiums or items

See, pretty simple. You purchase a Garmin (or other tracking system) tied into a database that can track your points. Once you accumulate enough points you then redeem the points for new shoes, shorts, reduced insurance rates, etc.

I'd love a new pair of shoes....

Thursday, October 1, 2009

St. George Marathon

I have a few friends running the St. George Marathon this weekend. In honor of their efforts, I found this great video.

Have a great race everyone.