Monday, November 28, 2011

K-5K Program

Maija is a seven year old Weimeraner who
needs to lose about 20 lbs. We've put her
on the K (kennel) to 5K program.
I'm doing a little coaching on the side. My first client is looking to lose about 20 lbs. to meet her ideal weight. She's a close family friend so I accepted the challenge. We're starting off slow since she hasn't really been doing a lot of exercising lately. Her doctor recommended she start slow, but that eventually she should be maintaining a 5-7 mile run on a regular basis to maintain her health.

We started right after Thanksgiving and have been doing every day since. Obviously we're taking it slow. She alternates between walking and running which is a good way to work up to her goal. In addition to the running, she is also working on her nutrition. She's moved to a lesser fat diet and more natural foods. She's also reduced her portion sizes. She's got her family behind her in keeping to her goals.

Since I'm not really a certified coach or anything, I am loosely following the Couch to 5K program. I've termed this the K to 5K program. I'm looking forward to working with her more and more and since this is in addition to my normal running, I'll be putting in more miles.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Runner Nutrition at its Finest

What's creepier than a hand
with a face that talks? 
Today, I ran 12.6 miles. It was a faster pace than I have sustained for a while and it felt good until my foot started hurting at mile 9 at which point I fell behind. My ending time was still a respectable 8:30 pace for the entire time, but I felt lousy that I didn't keep up. My post race nutrition is noteworthy though.

If you have followed me for a while, you know that my running nutrition is newsworthy in its high levels of good cholesterol mixed with moderate amounts of protein and carbohydrates right up there with Chef Boyardee in the canned goods section of the grocery store. I have to blame this on my parents for never cooking Hamburger Helper. I had a friend who is a successful engineer, his mom is a highly regarded university professor, his dad an accomplished man who worked for the state also served in the National Guard. They all got to eat Hamburger Helper growing up. I would always pray that if I got invited to eat dinner with my friend's family that we could have Hamburger Helper. I would then come home and tell my mom who would get a disgusted bitter beer face on and exclaim in a high pitched voice, "Hamburger Helper is as bad as McDonalds." I happened to long for McDonalds too so this comment really didn't make much sense to my young mind.

After the Saturday run, I cooled down at the running store and signed the wife and 15 year old up for the Thanksgiving Day race. I drove to the Great Harvest Bread store and used one of my buy one get one free coupons (I think I have over 100 left and they have no expiration date) to pick up two loaves of bread (pumpkin chocolate chip and cinnamon pull aparts). Upon returning home, I was tired and ready for a shower and some food. The food resulted in a protein drink with bits of green things with a couple eggs and maybe some hashbrowns  steaming hot corn dog. Yeah, one of those ones that come in the big giant package that is found at Costco. I justified this in that it probably has a good amount of protein and the crust around it i'm sure isn't just regular's got some cornmeal mixed in. Obviously it is good.

I could have stopped there, but I moved on to some leftover sweet potatoes from dinner last week. These are the kind of sweet potatoes that when you eat them you feel as though you have died and gone to heaven. In addition to the sweet potato, it has a carmelized pecan topping on it. I could eat these every day and then when I show up on The Biggest Loser you can look back at this post and see where it all went awry. Ana Konikova (like I'm going to spill my guts to Bob..ha!) and I would be having one of our get-to-know you visits that they hold and I'll talk about my sweet potato problem.

In the end, here is my post run nutrition for the morning.
2-Foster Farms Corn Dogs
1 serving sweet potatoes
water/leftover gatorade from my fuel belt

Now, I'm going to follow this up with a pizza from Costco or Papa Murphy's because I don't want to cook.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Netflix-You Made My Day

The weather has moved from Fall to Winter here in the Northern Utah area. On Saturday, the valley areas got 1-3" of snow, while the mountains got up to 24" in some areas. The wind on the other hand was nasty and mean. I however, have not resigned myself yet to break out my cold weather gear. Yes, I'm in denial. However, I am transitioning into putting in more time on the treadmill on those "not so nice" winter days.

Today, I put in seven miles on the treadmill. Normally by seven miles I start thinking about creative ways to get the little dots to go around faster and faster. I then imagine how fast I need to make the treadmill go before it throws me off or if I time it just right if I could fling myself off and take out the treadmill runner behind me. Today, was a magical moment for me. The local rec center added public wi-fi to the facility. No longer am I forced to choose between the ipod or the three different programs on the tv monitors. I can have NETFLIX.

Today's run was one of my more pleasant treadmill workouts. The only thing I have to remember is to make sure that I don't stop to watch whatever is on more closely or for sure I will be launching myself into the treadmill behind me.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Got Toenails?

How far will a runner go for an additional medal? Here are some brief statistics in my case.

930 miles
$200 gas
47 total hours in the car
23 total miles running
90 degree temperatures
1 toenail that is officially 'questionable' terminal
infinite number of 'honey-dos' to make up for the time gone

2 finisher medals

The Las Vegas Ragnar Relay was the past weekend. In June, I put together a team of 12 runners to take on this event. One of the most motivating factors was the possibility of receiving an additional medal. Ragnar offers a second medal for anyone who runs the Wasatch Back Ragnar Relay and the Las Vegas Ragnar Relay in the same year. Leading up to the race was a long and sometimes frustrating experience.

I ran this race last year, but missed out on the second medal because I didn't complete the Wasatch Back Relay that year also. I wasn't about to let that second medal slip away this year.

The race itself was uneventful other than the 90 degree weather during my day runs, the lack of sleep at night and the running took everything I had, but it was a good way to round out the running season.

This was also my third relay for the year. I'm relay'd out. I plan on holding off on any more relays until something fantastic comes along.
Van 2: L to R Melanie, Terece, Cami, Me, Chad, Jeff
By running both the Wasatch Back (middle)
and the Las Vegas (right), I received the
Saints and Sinners medal (left)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Real Men Wear Pink?

She's rocking the outfit much better than me

In an effort to get ready for pacing the Pink Series Half Marathon on Saturday, I spent some time feeling the essence of the event. In a race with 800+ women and only 10 men, it took some work. I had to ask myself a couple of the following questions:

  • Do I look fat in these tights?
  • Would it look better to go with the black shorts with silver trim or the black shorts with the white trim?
  • Should I wear my hair up or down?
  • Hat or no hat?
After a couple of these questions, I began to break out in a cold sweat and started feeling slightly nauseous.

The weather went from a projected 60-70 degrees for the day (2 weeks before) to a chilly projected high for the day to be 39 degrees (29 at start time). I had to do some digging around to get out my cold weather gear in preparation for the race.

The race officials gave us a table at the race expo, put us up for the night in a hotel and fed us dinner in addition to getting all the gear the racers did. 

Race morning was cold and wet alternating between rain and snow. I changed places with one of the other pacers so that instead of pacing the 2:20 group, I moved up to 2:00 pace group.  This was much closer to what I have paced in the past so I didn't have to focus on slowing down as much. We spent as much time on the bus or in some covered shelter areas as possible before the race began.

I started with a group of people who said they would be sticking with me. In the end, there were about 6-8 that finished close to our group. The course consisted of several small rolling hills with a couple inclines. I banked about a minute and half at the beginning to have as a cushion if the course ended a little long. I stopped about 200 yards from the finish to cheer on and push forward some of those who were behind me. I finished in 1:59:29.

I expected the charm to be more inventive
Instead of giving out medals, they gave out a charm. They had four well-dress executives giving the charm. When I walked up to one and asked him for the charm, he gave me a strange look. When I held out my hand, he breathed a sigh of relief and handed it to me. I thought the charm would be nicer and represent the race better. Instead it was a small rectangle with the words "Park City '11" on it. I did some looking around and it costs about $.50 in bulk. It was rather disappointing. The race bag did contain a set of Skull Candy earbuds which was a great boon.

All in all, the race was fun. I enjoyed working with the ladies to accomplish their goals and also to be one of the lucky few men who can say that they have run the Pink Series Half Marathon.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Where No Man Has Gone Before....

In all my wildest fantasies about winning the Boston Marathon dreams, I never expected to be part of an elite group of runners. I didn't know that my running prowess would be so noticed that I would be chosen to experience something that very few–if any–other man has experienced. In fact, if I were a single man, this would be a dream come true.

I will be running in the Pink Half Marathon on Saturday.

How did I get so fortunate to run this event? Is it because I have become so well known in my running abilities? Is it because I'm "In the know" with the event organizers?

It's even better. I get to run the race as a pacer for the 2:20 group.

Monday, September 19, 2011

2011 Dirty Dash

Locally, there are two main running events that bring out the crowds. The companies that put these events on are looking to cram as many people onto a course as possible. The first is the Ragnar Wasatch Back and the second is the Dirty Dash. I participated in the Dirty Dash on Saturday.

Here is the description of the Dirty Dash.

This race puts all other races to shame.  The Dirty Dash is a mud run obstacle course where a military boot camp meets your inner five-year-old’s fantasy and subsequently converts boy to man and then…man to swine. 

You’ll need endurance to trudge up mountains of sludge, courage to overcome uncompromising obstacles, a complete lack of shame to wallow in pits of mud and a smile to show through at the end!

Let your inner mud-loving child loose on this course. It's designed in such a way that if you come out completely clean you'll easily be eliminated for cheating. A friend of mine won 6 free entries. When he asked if I wanted to join the fun, it was a no-brainer. There are two types of people participate. 1. Those whose sole purpose is to see how dirty they can get along the course no matter how long it takes. 2. Those who like the challenge of the obstacles but still have the racing spirit and drive to get it done as fast as possible.

At the top of the slide are people who squirt dishwashing
soap on participants so make them more slippery.
I run too many races to just sit back and get messy. If i'm in a group of people and someone says "go," I'm not hanging back to examine the scenery. This was the case for the Dirty Dash. I was in the 9:20 am group. When they said go, I went. The first obstacle was a steep hill that had been watered and muddied up to the point of absolute slickness. I ran up the side where the mud was least thick and some grass still remained. Upon reaching the top and starting on the course, I found myself in a position rarely experienced in the past—first place. My friend was in second and we both commented how strange a feeling it was. The feeling lasted for about 1/2 mile then a father/son duo passed us both. Throughout the rest of the course, I passed up many of the people who started at 9:00 am.
They were white when I started.

Throughout the course the were obstacles. These included a 1/ 4 mile of tires, 4 sets of walls within a mud pit, a rope swing, a rope ladder, a giant slip and slide, several barrels embedded in mud, a bog with water up to my chest at times and finally two big mud pits at the end of the race.

The course in itself would have been a challenge with the hills, but throw in all the obstacles and it was really tough. The majority of the people crowded around the shorter obstacles so in the interested of time, I went over the larger ones. At some point along the course, I lost my bib. When I finished, they asked if I knew my bib number or even cared. I didn't care. I finished under an hour which for this course is pretty good. After the race they had an area with water coming out pipes where participants could rinse off as much of the mud as possible. I purposely wore some clothes that if they got trashed, I'd be ok. My socks didn't make it.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Ethics in Course Creation

For those of you who follow my blog, you know that beside my running and pacing, I race direct a couple races each year. I also volunteer and coach on occasion as a way of giving back.

I came across a statement from a smaller relay in Colorado called the Colorado Relay that claims Ragnar Relays is stealing race routes from other races across the country including theirs. I looked at the maps supplied of the various courses and I have to admit that they look very similar.

I've participated in a variety of relays including Ragnar ones. As a runner, it is fun to get with a group of like-minded people running. It's fun to mix it up and test my skills in different environments.

As a race director, however, I know how much work goes into putting on a race. I've only done 5k and 10k races, but there is a lot of work involved. With my last 10k, I started organizing the race in October of 2010 for a June 2011 race. I spent a lot of hours looking over maps, working with local police and city, running the course, driving the course, etc. By the time the race happened, I knew every turn in the course, every incline, every potential traffic problem. The course became mine. For a relay, I can imagine how personal a race becomes.

These two courses look really similar to me.
The race director for the Colorado Relay claims that Ragnar came in and stole his course and claimed it for their own. The only difference is that Ragnar is running the course in reverse. In addition, Ragnar originally was running the course on the same day as the Colorado Relay. If I had created a course as large as these relays are, I would be very protective of my course. If a race started and finished in the same general locations as mine, that would be fine. But, if the entire course were copied, I would be steaming mad. While there is no regulation on how a course is created, there is an underlying code of ethics involved. When I run races, I am always looking at how the course is set up, what vendors they have, etc.

Ragnar is a large enough company that there is no need to use an already created course. I'm interested to hear your thoughts on this. Is it flattery that a large company is using a route already created and running or are they just being too lazy to create their own unique course?

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

You Know You're a Runner with ADD When....

Are you a runner with ADD? Here are some warning signs.

You Know You're a Runner with ADD When....

1. You stop to get a drink at the aid station, forget you are running in the race and start handing out water to the other runners.

2. In a panic, you search frantically all over the house trying to find your Garmin which happens to be on your wrist.

3. You pass by the window of a store having a sale and you stop to look in the window at what is on sale.

4. You go to get your Garmin and end up checking your email, posting on facebook, evaluating the new cover of Runner's World then leave the room wondering what you came in for anyway.

5. You leave the Honeybucket, but you forget if you are coming or going so you get back in line "just in case."

6. You compose multiple great blog posts while running yet none of them make it to the blog.

7. You sit down to check your email before you go for a morning run and then realize it's noon and you're still in you running clothes sitting in front of the computer.

8. The songs on your new playlist are the same as the ones on your old playlist–yet you like the new one so much better.

9. You forget to turn your Garmin on until 1/2 mile into the race and then wonder why all the road markers are off.

10. You're on the bus going to the starting line and you begin to worry that the bus is going to get to school late.

How many of these can you relate to?

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Pain Be Gone

School has now started for my kids and I've already been stumped by my daughter's beginning Algebra. I decided to write my own story problem.

Blaine decides to run a 207 mile relay. It takes his team 30 1/2 hours to complete with only 3 hours of sleep. The next weekend Blaine decides to run the South Valley Half Marathon the following weekend.
He then drives 6 hours in his car with his kids to Las Vegas in 118 degree heat with a radiator that is failing only to turn around 2 days later and drive back.

How well will Blaine be at running when he gets back from Vegas? Will he?

a. Run like the White Kenyan that he is.
b. Run in such a way that Runner's World contacts him to be with Kara Goucher on the next cover?
c. Run in a manner much like the drivers in this area (weaving in and out of lanes, stopping in the middle of the road to chat with a friend, deciding to cross four lanes of traffic on the freeway so they can make the exit)
d. Fail miserably and contemplate a new program called The 5k to coach plan

I know you want to say A or B, but my running after Vegas was much more like D with a good helping of C as I was staggering back home.

Why would anyone carry their money around this way. It's
like saying "Mug Me."
It must have been a combination of everything, but I noticed my ability to run through the hotel hallways at night naked race my kids to the elevator at the hotel was resulting in a slight tenderness in my right side going down my inner leg. By Friday night, the mild discomfort was turning into something more ominous. I had a 15 mile run scheduled for Saturday morning.

The plan was to get up, get in 15 miles then be back in time to take my son to his first High School Cross Country meet. The reality was me getting out the door, stretching just a little and only being able to go 3 or 4 steps before my body informed  me it wasn't going. Two more unsuccessful attempts to "run it off" resulted in my staggering/limping back home (where answer C comes into play).

There is a style that I
just don't have yet..sigh.
It's been almost two weeks since I've put in any sort of run.  I considered the possibility biking, but I just don't look good in a hat.

Today was the magic moment. No pain in my day to day movement since Tuesday. After the kids got to school, I kissed my wife, put on my Garmin and headed out for an easy 3 mile run. The result? A little stiffness, but no pain. If all goes well tonight and I wake up pain free tomorrow,  I'm calling myself healed.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

South Valley Half Marathon Report

It's been a busy week filled with a quick three day trip to Vegas to remember and celebrate the life of my wife's grandfather who finally finished tasting everything on the menu at Blueberry Hill Diner. After the funeral, it was get kids back home to start school and get caught up with work. As a result of all this business, my post about the South Valley Half Marathon got lost in the shuffle. Here is my belated post about this race. 

Me, Whitney and Candice
I didn't know much about the race other than the links I saw on various blogs. I was asked to pace the 1:55 group. Whitney was planning on sticking with me in her efforts to finish under 2 hours. I invited Candice to join our pacing group and she agreed to pace the 2:15 group. Candice and I met briefly as she went running by me at the Timpanogos Half Marathon a few weeks back. It was great to meet her and visit a little.

We met early to pick up our bibs and signs. The race had put together a clever retro looking logo which they put on their medals and t-shirts. The bus ride up to the starting line was uneventful and I spent the time dozing. Our bus driver was kind enough to point out a few of the aid stations along the way and to remind us that anything we left on the bus was hers

One of the first things I noticed when I got to the starting line was the lack of bathroom facilities available. The lines were long and not moving very quick. Whitney was a few minutes behind me in the never ending line. The race was chip timed for the finish which meant that everyone's time started when the gun went off. 

Here's what the race website said about the course.

That's picturesque, right?
"This scenic, down-hill course begins up beautiful Rose Canyon in Herriman.  Athletes will enjoy a gradual decent though wooded foothills.  A spectacular view of the Wasatch Mountains promises to inspire every runner.  You will experience a fun-filled, well-supported course though the South Valley."

Doesn't that sound fabulous? I think they were talking about another race or maybe it was a race template where they just added some adjectives, nouns and locations. The start area was in a wooded area that was nice, but that's where it ended. The one thing I remember is the endless road, the 4 miles of uphill climb and the never ending view of cheat-grass.

Cool Retro Look
As a pacer, our my goal is staying on pace. I spend a lot of time looking at my watch, calculating where I should be and checking it in relation to the mile markers. The first couple of miles went by and I'm right on pace. I was told there was a climb so to be a few minutes a head of pace to compensate for the hill slow down. After mile 2, I start noticing that the mile markers are off. As time went on, I noticed that my watch and mile markers were almost 1/4 mile off. 

At mile 4, the climb began. The climb was gradual enough to start that I was only about 15 seconds slower per mile, but from mile 6-7 the climb was steep and tough.

Mile marker 11 and 12 come along and I'm on target and even a little bit in front. At mile 12, the organisers must have realised that they were off so they attempted to make up the difference from mile 12 to the finish. I crossed the finish line in 1:57. The other pacers that came through had the same results I did. A few of the race people were talking about our finish times and we mentioned to them that the course was marked incorrectly and ended up longer than 13.1. The nodded their heads like this comment was nothing new. 

I'm going to pass on this race next year.  

Friday, August 19, 2011

Epic Weekend

Epic Cache-Teton Relay was a week ago. I had every intention to get this post done before the middle of the week. As you can see my road to "you know where" is getting another brick.

This was my second year participating in the Relay and only the third year the race has existed. With marathons and half marathons popping up faster than your local Amway dealer can draw circles, it is nice to have an event that is different.

Epic Relay began three years ago with only 12 teams that participated. Last year there were under 50. This year there were 84 teams. It's one of my favorite events.

If you're unfamiliar with the relay system, picture 2 vehicles of 6 runners together playing a giant game of Tag for over 30 hours. Team "Remember the Tetons" started at 7:30 am in Logan, Utah. The teams are staggered so that the slowest teams start early (5:30 am) and the faster ones start later (12:00 pm). Our team was what you would consider the "upper middle class" of team speed. We were pushing to finish in under 30 hours. The finish was 206 miles later in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

A couple nice things about relays is that you have some freedom in the choice of your three runs. The downside to be a faster runner in a relay is that your freedom is generally limited to the hardest ones. I was originally assigned the hardest leg of the relay (#7), but after some significant amounts of swearing and waving my arms up and down like a mad man sweet talking I was able to get switched to the fourth hardest leg (#11) of the course. My runs consisted of the following:

1. 9.31 miles
2. 7.07 miles
3. 3.31 miles

The good thing about my part of the race was that the first leg was the hardest and it definitely lived up to the hard part.

I started my run at 4:00 pm with the temperature in the mid 90s with lots of steep climbs and drops. The first three miles of my run were hot, but I was holding my own. The last 6 miles of the course were agonizing and I just wanted to fall into an ice cold stream.

My next run was at 3:30 am. The route was a gradual downhill for 7 miles. By the time my leg started, the temperature had dropped to 31 degrees. As I ran, my breath would get thicker or thinner depending on the temperature.

My last and final run happened about 12:30 pm. The route was a level paved trail. I pushed this as best I could to make up some time. In the distance I could see one last runner I was gaining on. The thought of one last "road kill" (when you pass someone on a relay) gave me the little boost that I needed.

We finished the relay in 30 hours 29 minutes for an 11th place finish out of 84 teams. We didn't make our under 30 hour goal, but we also added about 10 more miles to the course than last year.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Running Naked

As part of my new training program, I am making some changes to my running habits. I took off on my first run on Tuesday morning. It was an awkward run to say the least. I kept wondering if people were staring at me. I was completely and utterly NAKED*!

My new training program I am following is all about getting back in touch with the way my body feels as I run. The base miles are designed to just build aerobic base miles without breaking down my body. It's not about speed or tempo. Those things are designed to come along in the Big Workouts. Tuesday was my first opportunity to get in touch with this new style.

It was really awkward for Tuesday, but today's run was much better. For a good portion of my run, I was just in a good groove. I had no care in the world what others would say as they saw me running along. I went throughout the neighborhood, down on my favorite trail and looping back home. It was refreshing.

In fact, I've been toying with the idea of participating in this fashion for the Epic Relay that I am running this weekend. I've run it by a couple of the other runners on my team and at first they seemed a little dismayed that I'd even consider such a thing, but after explaining it further, they are good with it. Should be exciting.

*Would you like to join the running naked craze? It's easy, just leave your Garmin at home. If you're like me, running sans watch was very revealing.

Monday, August 8, 2011

New Training Regimen

On Saturday, I finished coaching the half marathon training group I have been working with. This is the second consecutive coaching I have done. I enjoy the opportunity to give back and work with others to get faster, but I feel it is time to return my focus to my individual training. I have been looking at various new training plans. I looked into using Runner's World like I have done in the past. I enjoyed it, but felt like it wasn't fit for me. I followed the last plan really closely, but the results were less than ideal when I ran my last marathon.

This time around I opted to talk to a friend who is an elite runner. She's run multiple races of all sizes and has always come to some of the races I direct. I gave her a brief rundown on my current status and where I would like to be as a runner.

After his gig in Oz was over,  the Tin Man started running.
Who would have guessed. 
She put together a 3 page plan explaining everything and giving me some great advice. Her plan comes from the Tinman training philosophy.

It took me some time to figure out what the philosophy was and how to incorporate it into my training. In essence, I will be focusing on a couple things:
1. Building my aerobic endurance by adding more days to my training
2. Making my runs more efficient
3. Running more small races to track my progress

First thing on the list is adding more days to my training. I'm working into a 5-6 day a week plan. I'll be adding 1-2 additional short run days (30 min max) for the next few weeks until my body gets used to the increased number of days.

One day a week, I'll have what is called a "Big Workout." This is more than just a long run. It is a longer run, but incorporates other workouts into the run (i.e., tempo, speed work, fartlek, hills, etc.).

I'm excited for the new change and what it offers to my own training.

Does anyone else follow the Tinman Philsophy?

Friday, August 5, 2011

The Race to Chevron

'Twas the morning of the 5th and the plans were in place.  Four runners would meet for their first morning run.

With Raylene as the coordinator the plans were in place.

Raylene would go right to meet Blaine with Mieka to the left. Katie would meet the group at chevron by 7, then they'd all run back to the place where they started.

My mind was 'a-buzzing to get out and run. I hadn't been running with my friends in a while. I got up at 4 to make sure I'd be ready.

I opened the cupboard to prepare a fine breakfast to discover to my horror that the peanut butter had gone missing. I looked on the counter, under the sink and the pantry. There's none to be found which means my plans are all ruined.

With a sigh and a grumble I pulled out the cereal. A bowl with dried fruit, a few nuts and some yogurt. Not my best breakfast ever, but better than nothing.

With the Garmin strapped on and my fuel belt attached, I kissed my wife goodbye as she mumbled "have fun and be safe."

I flew out the door without glancing back. At the corner I saw Raylene's chipper face. "Good Morning," she beamed and we started our run.

My legs felt great for the first couple miles. My stomach however had other ideas. It grumbled and complained from the very beginning.

At mile six we called Katie and made new arrangements. I'd stop at the Chevron where Katie was waiting and drive her truck to the place where we started.

Mile 8 came upon us and my stomach lurched hard, I felt the urge for a pit stop without one to be found. By nine I was reeling, my stomach was hurting—where's a honey bucket when needed?

I'm almost without hope when off in the distance, A glimmer of hope. I see the chevron where Katie is waiting. Without a word to my friend, I rushed right inside. What a relief that I got there in time and NO ACCIDENT.

With a wave to my friends, I bid them farewell. "Good luck on your run. I'll see you all later."

The End....

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Timpanogos Half Marathon

I finished the race and was going through to get a bite to eat when the Smoothie King people greeted me and said "We were just wondering if we would see you." This tells me one of two things:

1. I should talk to them about sponsoring me
2. I'm a big Smoothie King whore fan who visits the store way too often

I ran as a pacer at the Timpanogos Half Marathon this past Saturday. I've really enjoyed being a pacer because I'm too cheap to pay for my races and giving back to others who are wanting to hit a new PR. The course was put together well and overall it went smoothly. I am sure I could have beat any previous PR had I been running this rather than pacing. Here are some of the highlights of the race.

 1, 971 foot elevation loss with the majority of it in the first
7.5 miles.

  • Got there are 4:30 am and met the other pacers to get my bib, bag and shirt.
  • Arrived at the start about 5:20 am to see the long lines at the Honey Buckets. I don't think there is enough time to wait in line and still be in the crowd with my sign.
  • At 5:40 am they announce that the race is delayed due to some buses that were slow getting up the canyon. Since everyone was ready to start, that meant the bathrooms were free—SCORE!
  • 6:00 am the race starts
  • 6:15 am I'm running way too fast for the 1:55 pace. Instead of slowing down, I told the 1:50 pacer to speed up.
  • 7:00 am approximately. Candice runs by, introduces herself and then promptly ditches me to beat her 1:55 time. I looked for her after, but the pink top, blond hair pulled back with a pony tail was the "go to" style of the day.
  • 7:43:45 I am close to the finish, but still more than a minute from my pace time. I slow down to a light jog. 
  • 7:44:45 my official chip time. 
I didn't need a GU the whole time. My legs felt great. I didn't get a race shirt, but they promised that they were ordering more and would get us one. Next year I'll run this course and see what I can do. 

Friday, July 29, 2011

Random Thoughts Friday

I've been pondering over a bunch of randomness from my last run. Here are few of randomness.

  • The Sound of Music-My parents worked to instill some "culture" in me as a child. I remember having to watch countless hours of this movie. A few years ago, my wife and I bought this movie. I attribute this to "Von Trapp syndrome." Ironic how I am passing on the tradition to my kids.
  • Saucony Kinvara-Currently my new favorite shoe. It's lighter which feels great and the blister that normally shows up after 5 or 6 miles doesn't. In addition, they were free. I wonder if free shoes work better than shoes I have to work to get? I was always told I would appreciate things more if I have to pay for them myself. Maybe I'll stop liking them after they fall apart. 
  • Pacing-In addition to my regular running, i've been able to pace several races. I get all the benefits of the regular racer, but without the cost. I'm liking this. 
  • New Marathons-Races with obstacles are the newest craze. I've been wondering when the retail giants are going to jump on the bandwagon. I could foresee a time when WalMart has a store to store marathon.  I could easily map a store to store marathon. They are missing out on potential revenue by not considering this option. They could increase the level of difficulty by requiring each runner to race through the store, pick up a bottle of Powerade and maneuver through a checkout during double coupon days. At the same time, I've been to WalMart the day after Thanksgiving and had to wait hours to get through the line. I didn't get any medal then...people are missing out!
  • 140 laps to go-I was doing intervals and for the final interval lap I pushed it as hard as I could. I completely obliterated my ultimate marathon pace. If I can keep up that pace for 140 more laps, then I'll be on the cover of Runner's World. 
  • Runner's World-I wonder if I would wear a shirt or not in my cover photo.
At this point, I was done with my run. I'll be pacing the Timpanogos Half Marathon this weekend. The downside to summer racing...start times. The race starts at 5:40 am. Which means I get to be at the bus location by 4:15 am.

I'll have an update after the race.

Monday, July 25, 2011

'Almost Holiday' in Utah

This July is one of the most memorable. It's right up there with other memorable July's. Here are a few from my past. I'm not clear if the ranking is best remembered to least because the event sticks out in my mind and therefor it is epic. Or the ones at the bottom are most important because I have suppressed the memory in an effort to forget.

  1. Burning down the carport. A friend and I discovered that if you take the lead weights off of car tires and melted it down, you can pour the melted lead into a dixie cup of water and it would make cool designs (yeah I was 11 at the time). The one thing I didn't know was that just because the coals in the grill looked like they weren't burning doesn't mean you have to throw gasoline on it. 
  2. Going out to breakfast the day of a test in High School. This was a great plan. We'd meet early for breakfast, quiz each other, then go to school and take the test. We discovered that it was much more fun to go out to breakfast and then head over to the arcade than it was to return to school. 
  3. Making a good impression with the new neighbors. The crabapple fight that I started within a few days of moving into a new neighborhood. It didn't make the best first impression.
  4. Dog Names. I learned that naming my dog Sara wasn't a bright of idea when the girl who lived two houses down was also named Sara. I couldn't figure out why my parents kept recommending other names until the time that I called out to the dog and the neighbor girl answered.
  5. Fireworks shipped right to my door step. In my senior year of high school, I teamed up with several friends to order fireworks from a catalog and had them shipped to me. The old neighbors still talk about the best 4th of July our neighborhood had seen. Yeah, different era when UPS delivered all sorts of cool stuff.
This July has been memorable because the state changed the fireworks laws. It used to be that you could only have ground based fireworks that went no more than 10 feet off the ground. This year, the max is 150 ft and you can have ariels, etc. It used to also be that fireworks were legal the end of June to July 7. However, this year they are legal June 27 to July 25. We've had fireworks all month long and I've enjoyed them. They rival the ones I had to buy and get shipped to me. Why are the fireworks legal for the whole month? Because Utah has an "almost holiday" in July called Pioneer Day.

What is Pioneer Day? It's in memory of the mormon pioneers who officially settled on July 24, 1847. I have a couple ancestors mingled among these first groups that arrived.

I'm all for a holiday, but this one throws the whole state off. Some places are open while others are closed. The banks are closed, but if I overdraw something on this day, they still charge me. Pools are open, some retail places are closed. Some people get the 24th off while others are told where they can put their holiday.  It's a half holiday.....and for some reason, I generally feel like that is how it gets celebrated by me too. The one daughter still had dance class today, but many of my clients took the day off. So I worked in the morning and took the family to see Harry Potter in the afternoon. 

Any odd holidays celebrated in your neck of the woods?

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Electronic Death

I have no idea what the problem could be...
"Dad, the kid's computer is making funny noises and I can't log in..."

After a great dinner and a movie with my wife, these are not the words I am excited to hear. I just had a conversation earlier in the day with the wife about when we'll get the Macbook "paper weight" repaired. We set a date for early September. It goes back to my old saying "Don't commit to fixing something because the other appliances will get jealous and break.."

Sure enough, the kid's computer's (my old Mac G5) hard drive seems to have bit the dust. I can't get it to even recognize that a hard drive exists. I know enough about the systems that I am fairly confident, almost certain, hoping that it is true crossing my fingers that I can take it in and get all the data pulled from it and buy a new hard drive for it. It could use an upgrade with the amount of photos and songs that the kids have put on it since I turned them loose on it. I'm sure that the computer would have been just fine if I hadn't talked about fixing the laptop in the same room as this.

We should have carried on the conversation about the computer like we do when we are talking about Christmas–on a date. It should have been a conversation over dinner somewhere and it would have gone something like "The lasagne looks good, I think it is time to get the laptop fixed. Or maybe I'll get the chicken..." After 16 years of marriage, anything we can do to spice up the date night conversation is a score in my book. Alas, I forgot the rule and mentioned it in front of not one, but four other computer related equipment: the G5, the printer, my new rockin' iMac 27" and Macbook Pro.

The iMac and Macbook Pro know that they are the current top dogs in the electronic pecking order so they are good from a self-esteem point of view. The printer and the G5 however were on shaky ground. They've both served us well, but were getting up there in years. I think the idea of being dropped lower on the food chain finally got to both of them. The G5 gave up the ghost last night. Once the G5 went out, the printer was left. The added pressure was too much for the printer to handle. It went the direction of the G5 and stopped functioning also. We performed some radical life-saving techniques that involved a variety of screw drivers, cotton balls, cussing and were able to revive it. I think it is on life support.

I hadn't even considered this...
With these two items non-functioning I have a couple options available to me:

  1. Send both of the to Goodwill so that I won't feel guilty about throwing them away. Someone else can do it for me.
  2. Open them both up and tinker with them. My profession has nothing to do with tinkering, but maybe as a novice I will invent a transporter or warp drive or something.
  3. Open them up, fill them with dirt, plant flowers in them and give them to my wife as an anniversary gift use them as decoration on the deck.
  4. Put them on the side of my house and see if they'll sprout new baby computers.
  5. Leave them on a neighbour's door step in a bassinet with a note about how I couldn't take care of them anymore.
No matter which option choose, I will be purchasing some new equipment soon. 

Sunday, July 17, 2011

I Didn't Think a Person Could Sweat This Much

I did something the other day, that I've been putting off every time I walk downstairs. I took my P90X set of DVDs off the shelf and put one in as a fun family movie as I work to add some cross training into my workouts. It was a cool morning but I didn't get up early enough to get in a run so I felt that this was a good time to do the Plyo workout.

I bought the P90X system thinking that it would be a great way to improve my core. I worked my way through the system, saw some great improvement and gratefully put it on the shelf to let it age and give it to my son in 10 years as a wedding gift and to see how much dust I could collect before I decided to run through the course again. It lasted 1 1/2 years. I occasionally have done the Ab Ripper X as a reminder why I don't do the P90X system any more. It's because I enjoy being able to walk without pain in little known parts of my body.

One of the hard parts about the system is the little timer that is at the bottom of the screen that shows how much time I have left before the torture will end. The timer moves about as fast as the clocks in my High School would move when I really needed to go to the bathroom, but could only go in between classes. Time comes to almost complete halt. It is though this workout will never end. I'm starting to sweat and I haven't made it past the warm up yet. By the half-way point, my legs are burning, the shirt I am wearing is drenched with sweat and I'm having to wipe my brow every few minutes. I'm beginning to wonder if I could potentially dehydrate in an Air Conditioned basement.

I'm struggling through the "leap frog squats" and "rock star jumps" when my daughter walks in. She exclaims "I love those..." and starts with me. She's giggling and I'm struggling. Finally after a couple workouts, she looks over to me and says "You sweat a lot." and "That guy who only has one leg is better at this than you." Yeah, I'm thinking the same thing. The workout finally comes to an end and I go through the cool down. I'm not fully cooled down and visions of turning the sprinklers on so I can just go collapse in them comes to mind.

The next morning, I got out of bed and remembered why I had put the P90X system on the shelf. Some little known muscles in my legs had control over the lower half of my body and it was time to PAY. I should be able to walk normal again around Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Getting Older as a Runner

I know, two posts within a week. He must be avoiding work It's amazing! I have hit a turning point in my life. I'm faster, fatter, handsomer older. I have moved from one age bracket to a new one. For many people this may be cause for mourning, but for me, it is one of celebration. I'm moving into a less competitive age bracket. By now, a lot less 'weekend warriors' are on the road. Here are some of the plus sides of getting older.

Sure sucks when you get your butt whooped
by someone twice your age.

  • Less competition-i've discovered that there are a lot less people who have just taken up running as a 'bucket list item'
  • More media exposure-I'm no Max Hall, but how many mid-range guys have you seen in the news? All I have to do is run another 96 marathons and I'll be in the news.
  • Age bracket winner-Since I'm just barely in the next age division, this gives me a better possibility of beating out those who are nearing the next age group.
  • Better possibilities of getting in the work gossip pool-"Did you hear about Blaine's recent race? And he accomplished that at his age...." Unfortunately in my case, I am self-employed so the only comments that would be said are things like "We've been hearing about your running for 10 years now..."
  • I can now justify taking more rest days "in order to avoid over-training." This equates to more time to watch Deadliest Catch.
  • I can now justify wearing the medals more often because now it can be considered "weight training."
  • Older runners are able to throw out little pieces of information that younger runners will take as "wise advise" even if it is a bunch of crap.
  • I hear gray hair is a turn on. My hair is more of a dusty blond so the gray thing doesn't really work for me yet.
  • There is just something appealing when I pass some "twenty-something" in a race. The downside to this of course is when I get passed by some "twenty-something" with a stroller.
I'm sure there are plethora of other benefits to being in the next age bracket. I was looking forward to the 5 minute advantage I'd get for Boston, but since they changed the rules I'm stuck at where I was before the change.

While many people would be going through a mid-life crisis right now, I'm relishing in the possibilities.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Lehi Roundup 5k/10k Race Recap

With this post, I am officially caught up on my blogging will be caught up with the Summer about Christmas. I ran the Lehi Roundup race on Saturday June 25. I know what you're thinking. You're thinking "He ran the Utah Valley Half Marathon on June 11, Ragnar Wasatch Back June 17-18 and now he's done the Lehi Roundup race? The man is an ANIMAL!"

While I am an animal, I ran the race, but didn't actually run in the race.

How does that work exactly? It's long and involved and took almost a year to happen.

Here are the details. We'll need to journey back in time so follow the directions below to get the best effect.

{Shake your head back and forth very fast until you feel as though the world is becoming fuzzy...this is because you are travelling back in time and not because your brain is banging against the side of your head.}

On a warm June morning in 2010 . . .
I'm preparing myself to run the Pocatello marathon in September. The roundup 10k is part of the 15 miles I am planning on running for the day. The course is different this year than in the past. It starts 3.5 miles from my house. I run to the start as my warm up for the race. The course has changed 3 or 4 times over the past few weeks and finally has settled on 2 loops of the 5k which includes a couple steep hills.

They did something really odd in starting the 5K run/walk fifteen minutes in front of the 10k. I weave in and out of the walkers and strollers. The first lap I have police and the second lap the police have disappeared. I'm not thrilled about how the race was organized nor the course.

Evening of that same night . . . 
I'm remembering the race and decide that sending off an email to the race director with some suggestions for next year would be a great idea.

August 2010 . . .

I became the race director for the 2011 Lehi Roundup 5K/10K.

You can read about that here and the results of that email here.

{Shake your head back and forth very fast until you feel as though the world is becoming are now travelling back to near present day. The slight blurriness caused by the constant shaking will disappear-hopefully}

Race Week 2011 . . .
Guess what Costco donated?
The Lehi Roundup 5K/10K is part of the week-long city celebration. As a committee member, I also get to be at some of the other Roundup events. This makes for a busy week. My wife is in charge of building one of the floats for the miniature parade held on Friday night and Saturday morning which means I'm assisting in the float construction.

For the past months, I have been working to get sponsors for the race, order shirts, stress over sign ups, work with local grocery stores to get food donated, etc. It's exhausting. I've been working on some new marketing techniques that involved kids holding signs about the race while dancing on street corners social media and partnering with other races to get the word out about the race. There is a new half marathon and 5K that is being held on the same day as the Roundup race. I'm thinking that we'll take a hit on registrations, but as the race gets closer the registrations keep coming in.

Packet pickup
First year ever that participants got a tech shirt. Score!
 My office and living room has become packet stuffing central. There are t-shirts and bags everywhere. We ordered 100 extra shirts and have completely run out. We got some of the shirts from 2010 to give out and have run out of those too. We receive another 30 sign ups during the packet pickup.

June 24
It's 10:00 pm on Friday. With cold Dominos pizza in my wife's Jeep and me in the van, we set out to get the course marked for the morning. At 11:30 I run out of the color for the 10k and we have to do a run to Walmart to get more spray paint. At 1:30 am, both courses are marked. I'm debating whether the 2 1/2 hours of sleep is going to be of any value. I opt to give it a try and set the alarm. Surprisingly, when the alarm goes off at 4:00 am I am awake and ready for the day.

This is either great anticipation for the start or we're
short bathroom facilities.
At 4:30 am, the family is cutting up fruit and I'm dropping off water containers on the course. At 5:00 am the city parks people deliver tables for registration and drop off the tables to the water stations. At 6:00 am the High School volunteers start arriving. Race day registration opens at 6:15 am and we're actually running really smoothly. 7:00 am the race starts. Official count stands at 469 registered runners.

Rockin' cool medals for the age group winners.
Despite some snafus with the timing and some elites that missed a turn, the race goes smoothly. I hear some grumbling from runners who registered the day of the race but didn't get all the bells and whistles that the runners who registered two months ago received. My answer to that? TOUGH! Register earlier.

{Shake your head back and forth very fast. If you're still able to walk straight after this, then you obviously missed a step. Go back, re-read this and make sure you get the shaking right. I am not liable for anyone stuck in the past.}

Present Day
This way they are covered in case they
have to answer a call.
I just got the photos from my photographer friend and fellow runner. I am working on a post race survey to get out in the next day or two. I heard from the city that a street I couldn't have the runners cross because it was considered a state road has now been given to the city. Next year I'll have a lot more freedom to develop a course. I'm looking forward to being bigger and better next year.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Dear Ibuprofen-Thank you for getting me through Ragnar

Cafe Rio, a local texmex restaurant gave out a gift card
to runners if they ran the last 1/2 mile of a certain leg with
a sombrero that they were giving out. 
A few statistics for the June 17-18 weekend.
192 miles
12 friends
32 hours straight
3 hours sleep
15 ibuprofen

What does that give you? A Ragnar Wasatch Back Relay event.

Remember the last comment I made about my foot getting tweaked? Well, even after being off of it for multiple days, wandering around the house barefoot for several days my foot was still tender.

I missed the previous two Ragnar's and foot pain or no foot pain, I was going to run this one. My non-running friends asked why I would run with foot pain. I calmly replied, "Because Ragnar gives out really cool finisher medals." Is there any more reason than this? This is the whole reason I run races. If there were no medals involved, would I really continue running? I doubt it.

In the past, my relay events have consisted of a mixed group of men and women in the van through the duration of the race. This time, we were segregated to a men's truck and women van. I hesistated at the thought of being stuck in a truck for 30+ hours. It wasn't until the camp chairs were propped up in the back of the truck bed did I really see the value of the truck. I can't describe the absolute relaxation of finishing a run then sitting in a camp chair with my legs propped up while driving down the road with the wind cooling me down–pure bliss.

Ibuprofen was my best friend.

Leg 1 (5.6 miles, moderate difficulty) = 2 ibuprofen before the race began, 1 after. Legs felt pretty good.
Leg 2 (4.9 miles, moderate difficulty) = 4 ibuprofen in 2 waves before the leg, 2 after. Foot really starting to bother me. It's dark, there are a lot of rolling hills and as I pass a aqueduct I start wondering how long it would take to find my body if I fell in. My energy level is running pretty low at this point.

Rest = 2 ibuprofen. We arrived at the rest stop at 1:30 am anticipating that we'd be running again at 7:00 am or sooner. Paid $5 for a pancake dinner, then crashed on the gym floor inside the high school for a few hours sleep. Awoke off and on during the night and finally got up at 5:30 am, paid $2 for a hot shower in the school locker room and got ready for the rest of the day.

Leg 3 (7.9 miles, hard difficulty) = 7 ibuprofen and 1/2 oxcodone (not all at once but spread out). My foot is really hurting. My calves, quads and glutes are stiff. The first 1/4 mile was a slight downhill followed by 3/4 mile steep downhill. My legs didn't have time to warm up and loosen up so it hurt A LOT! After 2 miles into the run though the pain in my foot subsided and my legs finally started loosening up. The rest of the run was a combination of steep up hill and short flat sections. It was a nice relief to make it to the end.
Team 'Till We Collapse'

Once our van was complete, the next step was locating some solid non-runner food. Mission accomplished when we found a Mexican Restaurant. After our lunch, we all crashed on the grass near the finish while we waited for van 2 to finish. Our final finish time was 32 hours. Not quite the 29 hours we wanted, but we finished.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Pacing the Utah Valley Half Marathon

I know, you're thinking "What? The half marathon was more than a week ago and you're just posting about it now? Here's a few options as to why it has taken me so long to post this. You can choose one.

1. My recovery affected my ability to think coherently.
2. I was waiting for my rockin cool race photos to get posted.
3. I had moved on and was prepping for Ragnar.
4. My lawyers advised me that if I wanted to win the nomination I had to wait.
5. I was swamped with television and radio appearances promoting my awesomeness.

Feel free to mix and match any of the above or come up with your own. I'm totally good with that.

The race went well. I paced the 1:50 group which meant I needed to maintain an 8:23 pace the whole course of the race. This pace is much closer to my actual race pace so I was anticipating this more than the Thanksgiving Point race.

The race started at 6:00 am which meant that I was getting up at 2:30 am in order to eat some breakfast, get showered and out the door. The last bus left the parking area at 4:30 and I wanted to be there in plenty of time to use the porta potties and be ready. This plan worked smoothly.

I had about 10 people that came up and said they'd be trying to keep up with me. I let everyone know that we'd be running at a slightly faster pace than what was listed to compensate for the couple of hills that we'd encounter on the way.

During the course of the race, I had a small group that stuck with me the whole distance. The course was really nice and had I been running this all out, I would easily be posting about a new PR. Since this is my fastest pacing time, maybe I should say it is a pacing pr?

Me in the bright shirt.
After the race, I grabbed a couple food items and caught the bus to head back to Fleet Feet in American Fork for my half marathon coaching group. It was their first 5 mile run. Around mile 3 of the 5 mile run, I tweaked my foot and ended up hobbling the last few miles.

Finally, here is the awesome race photo.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Running–It's What I Do

I was asked the other day how I can spend all my time watching movies via Netflix do only one sport—running. I've been contemplating this. Here's a list of sports I've attempted:
  • P90X-too hard, too complicated, too many forms to fill out things to track, etc. Plus, when I start talking back to Tony as he is going through the exercises and laughing at the same joke over and over, then it's time to move on.
  • Swimming-I can't swim well and my ego gets in the way of taking lessons. I know I have talked about the possibility of a triathlon, but the thought of me in a speedo and swim cap just makes me shudder.
  • Basketball-hands, feet, dribble, run, guard. Again, way too complicated for me.
  • Biking-while appealing, I'd need to buy something better than the mountain bike that has gone through two winters in the backyard.
  • Weight training-I have a hard time understanding why this is even considered a sport. I always envision myself as a caveman in a rock lifting contest. I would be one that got squashed by the other caveman.
  • Baseball-I was always stuck in the outfield and my times on base were when I got hit by the ball.
Running on the other hand. I just have to do one thing–run. I don't have to catch anything, dribble anything (other than water as I'm attempting to get a drink), hit anything or pretend I'm a fish. I put on the shoes and run. It doesn't matter that I can't run in straight line or that anything more complicated than just running like drinking or opening a GU while running could get me pulled over for possible DUI if I were driving. 

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Getting out of the Country

I've started a half dozen posts and the majority of them I must say are pretty funny. I get laughing just thinking about the posts. Then I sit down and all the humor drains from my fingers and the posts go nowhere fast. Here's what has been going on recently (in no particular order):

• Ran a 10k on Memorial Day. It was free if I didn't want a t-shirt. The first 3 1/2 miles were uphill which sucked. It was raining in the morning and I was unmotivated to go, but a friend was running and he guilted me into it. I finished in 36:54 46:54which is a decent time. I didn't stick around for the prizes or giveaways, but my friend won a beanie and gloves.

• Deferred my Utah Valley Marathon entry to 2012. One week later, I got signed up to pace the 1:50 group for the half marathon. I'm liking the pacing gig...all the benefits of running without the stress of competition, looking to beat a PR, etc. and I get a medal for it and a lot of people telling me thanks. Can't go wrong there.

• Watched a late night episode of Dinner: Impossible where the guy had to cook three different complete meals that revolved around the Ironman theme. His meals revolved around water, running (legs) and bicycling (I can't remember what this one was...maybe road kill?) Anyway, I got thinking about triathlons and wondered if I could do one. All of a sudden I got that little thrill that I used to get when thinking about half marathons and full marathons. Only two road blocks. I don't swim well and the only bike I own is a mountain bike I bought from WalMart 6 years ago. My daughter who is 10 has taken it upon herself to join me in a quest to do a sprint tri and has offered to teach me to swim better. Who can pass up an offer like that?

• Really tired of the rain. We've had the wettest Spring EVER. There is still snow in the mountains. Some of the higher elevation ski resorts will be open on the 4th of July. We had 2 inches of rain just over the weekend. I generally don't mind the rain, but even I was starting to feel a little soggy. This week is clear and sunny. We're taking a quick trip to Vegas to celebrate my wife's grandfather's 85th birthday.

• The kids school 5k that I race directed turned out well. We made over $800 for the school library.

• The Lehi Roundup 5k/10k that I am race directing is burning a pretty good hole in my stomach. Directing a race with only 100 participants is one thing where the biggest prize is a pair of running shoes. Directing a race of over 400 with cash prizes and both a 5 and 10k is a totally different beast. I've been working to coordinate police, volunteer, sponsors, etc. I did manage to get out last week and run both courses. The course is much better than the one I ran on Memorial Day.