Friday, March 30, 2007

Almost Human Again

A full five days after my first half marathon and I am starting to feel human again. My body is almost fully repaired. Since my race schedule is full, I am having zero problems staying motivated. As a matter of fact, last night I felt well enough to push my pace up to a 10:25 second mile(s), even though I was doing the R3/W1 thing and tackling the big hills around my house. Honestly, I think a lot of the credit to how I feel is the fact that I both ran on Tuesday and then swam on Wednesday. The old muscles ached and complained, but they sure did respond fast to the stimulus!

This weekend, I have a long bike and long run on tap. Saturday I'm going to do my long bike around the neighborhood. Nothing special, just hills, hills, and more hills. Then Sunday, I plan on trying to run at Kennesaw Mountain Park, provided we don't get a lot of much needed rain. If any of my Atlanta friends are out that way, and need a recovery run, come join me :-)

Have a great weekend!!

Wes

ORN: 2.88 miles, 30 minutes, normal pace, 10:25 mmp avg, R3/W1

Thursday, March 29, 2007

The Long Swim

Have Plan Will Tri

After giving it very careful consideration, I have settled on a modified 20 week Olympic plan from BeginnerTriAthlete.com. Here are the key points to the plan:

1. Four week cycles
2. Every Week is 10% more than the previous week
3. Fourth Week is recovery week with 40% of last workout
4. Each month starts off at last months third week.
5. Everything is minutes based.

Here are my adjustments:

1. I will start my base run minutes off higher.
2. Every third week I will run 10-13 miles to keep my my current level of fitness.
3. I will adjust my base swim minutes downward slightly.
4. I will adjust my base bike minutes downward slightly.
5. Each discipline is twice weekly. I will add an optional third day of running.
6. On my optional day I may do upper body exercising, running, or both.

There now... That was easy, and this only adds one more workout day (the optional one) to my current period of training. The other big deal is going to be that Monday is a two a day now for me. I will swim in the morning (Oh, Lord!) and bike in the afternoon. Also, my long bike is supposed to be Friday. I don't see how that will work for me, so I may move it to Saturday.

With that in mind, I was back in the pool yesterday. The plan called for 500 meters straight with whatever stroke it took to get it done. I was thinking, Doggie Paddle would work just fine for me. The good news is that I rocked the pool (imho). I did 200 meters of warm up. I then did not one, but two, count'em, two! 500 meter straight swims. The first one I did in 9:56 and the second one I did in 10:01. I was so proud of myself. I finished with a 200 meter cool down for a total of 35 minutes of swimming.

Finally, I'm giving it some serious thought to running in both the Rocket City Marathon and the Disney Marathon. I really like the idea of being able to run with Joe. The Rocket will be my race, then at Disney, I can hang out with my girl (I'm not talking about you, Bob!). What do y'all think? Too much? Too soon?

Future Marathon Maniac, signing out :-)

Wes

OSN: 35 minutes, 1x200 warm up, 2x500 freestyle, 1x200 cool down

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

A Physical Checkpoint

The picture on the left is me and Dee Dee at our first 5K. The picture on the right is from yesterday :-)


This is about half way to where I want to be when I finish my triathlon season this year. I want to come out strong and ready to pick back up my running where it left off. The Silver Comet Half Marathon is definitely on, and it looks like the Disney Marathon is beginning to edge out the Rocket City Marathon. Dee Dee and I will be making that decision over the next week or so.

Ran 2.58 painful miles yesterday. As much as it hurt getting started, I felt much much better when it was finally over.

Wes

ORN: 2.58 miles, 30 minutes, recovery pace, 11:46 avg mmp, R7/W1

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Petulance is Rewarded

ING heard my whining and updated my time:

02:07:46

Now, please excuse me. I'm off to the back room to, what is that Super Nanny calls it? The Pee Pee Dance? Yea! That's it! The Pee Pee Dance!!

Woo hoo!

Wes

Monday, March 26, 2007

Dear ING Marathon and Half Marathon

After busting my chops for 2+ hours, I have one thing to say:

MAY I HAVE MY OFFICIAL TIME...PLEASE?

I realized that I started my Garmin at the finish line, not the start, and I glanced at my watch when I crossed the start line. So, I subtracted 24 seconds from my unofficial time. However, this in no way gets you off the hook. I can only hope that my finish photo has the actual clock time emblazoned upon it. In that way, I can use Tara's time to extrapolate my own.

Why, you ask, is 30 seconds plus or minus so important? Because its MY TIME. I EARNED IT. AND I WANTS IT. Baggins.

Wes

Note: It would appear, after looking at other age group results, if you crossed the finish line between 2:12:00 and 2:13:30, the computer did NOT update your final results. Arggh! Happy first half marathon to me :-(

Sunday, March 25, 2007

ING Georgia Half Marathon

A Lesson in Being Humble

What a great weekend. Little sis called Thursday night to try and hook up for dinner, but daddy duty required me to be at home, taking care of my boyz and cooking them dinner and stuff like that. Friday Kelly came out to Jimmy's soccer game. She met me and Dee Dee there, and my mom and step-father arrived from out of town just before the end of the game. The happy family was all together. We decided to spend the evening at Dave and Busters. Just in case you don't know what that is, it's an adult playground of pool tables, video games, a restaurant. It's just a cool place. While shooting some baskets on one of the games, I developed a cramp in my right quad and spent the rest of the weekend worrying about it.

Saturday we made it down to the expo when it opened around 11 a.m. I had a great time there. Dee Dee and I picked up some running gear and some nutrition stuff for the race. I got a long sleeve technical shirt and a new pair of shorts, and Dee Dee picked up a sleeveless technical shirt and a new pair of shorts too. I was wise enough to leave everything else I wanted at the expo and just take home those two commemorative items.

After leaving the expo it was off to Jimmy's soccer game in Dekalb County. After the game, which he won, I raced home to cook pasta dinner for the entire family. I made this recipe. It is excellent, by the way. I also made a meat based ragu for the kids, and Dee Dee made here vegetarian (semi this time) spicy tomato sauce. Dinner was excellent. Everyone left in a hurry because it was getting late, and that left Dee Dee and I time to prepare everything for the race and lay it out on the table before heading off to bed.

The alarm went off at 4 AM, and I got out of bed almost immediately this time. I wanted to eat and have a couple of cups of coffee before I left for the race. I also wanted to visit the local port-a-pot and not use the ones at the races. We managed to get ready early and left the house before 5 AM, getting to the Lindbergh MARTA station 15 minutes before 6 AM. The train came right away, and we hopped aboard and headed downtown. After arriving at Five Points train station, Dee Dee decided it was time for her to use the restroom. Women!! LOL. Fortunately the lines inside the MARTA station weren't that bad. We met up with Mom, Kelly, my step-father Bud and Kelly's business associate Isela, and headed for the bag drop off. I put my bag on the UPS truck and that's when Kelly and Isela decided to use the restroom too. Sheesh! They headed off for the race port-a-potties and waited in line. When I got there, there were 100+ port-a-potties and the lines was 25-35 deep for each one. They managed to finish up around twenty minutes before the race started. At that point, we decided to find our place at the start line.

The weather was beautiful for the start of the race. It was 65 degrees and crystal clear. We stood behind the 4:30 marathon pace group, close enough to see the actual starting line. For some reason, they asked me on my registration what I thought my finish time would be, but they declined to put us in corrals for the start. It was every man/woman for the themselves. After the horn went off, we all compressed forward, but we had no movement. It took about four minutes for me to cross the start time. My chip time listed my start as 7:08 AM.

Kelly and I took off at an even pace together and began to weave in and out of the other runners and walkers. There were far too many walkers up front, but they didn't bother me. We managed to weave enough to do a 9:30 first mile. At that point, while still crowded, the road opened up a bit, and we were able to pour on some speed. We turned in a 8:30 second mile, and then an 8 minute third mile. At that point, my interval tracking went all to hell, and I lost almost all of the rest of my splits.

The run down Edgewood Avenue was very nice. I had missed this section on my practice run. It was a mile to a mile and a half of the sweetest downhill. Kelly was really pushing us hard. I was trying to stay up with her, and I hadn't asked for a walk break. Around mile 4, I told Kelly it was about time for a walk break, and she told me to say when. I said, "Now!" Luckily we were right near a drink station and she needed to wet her lips, so it worked out well for both of us. As we made a left to start our run down Freedom Parkway, we met another nice down hill and really kicked it in a bit. Some of the other runners were saying they were concerned about coming back, but "Not to fear!", I said. We don't come back up this hill. We make a left at the V and take the semi-flat route out of here. Before the turn around at Freedom Parkway, we got to yell at Isela who was out in front of us by about a mile. At the V, we yelled an waved at Dee Dee who was making her way down the long hill as well.

After leaving Freedom Parkway, we began a small climb into the hills of Inman Park. This area was before Piedmont Park and had some really nice downhill runs and a few hills. It was about this time that I began to insist that I get a walk break every 10 minutes or so. We were pushing 8.5 to 9 minute miles, and I had never sustained that kind of pace this way. As we exited the park and began the long slow climb to fourteenth street and the hill from hell, I just felt plain exhausted. I looked at my watch and was suprised to see that I had averaged 9 minute miles for 10 miles. This was exactly what I needed to do to break 2 hours. I had given everything I had for those first ten miles, and with thirty minutes remaining, I could almost slow down a little and still break the big 2.

Unfortunately, it was not meant to happen. I didn't have it in me. Kelly had pushed me real hard, and I left almost everything I had strewn on the road for the last 10 miles. I slowly made my way up 14th street to the left turn on the way back to the finish. I was excited that the first turn on Peachtree was a nice down hill, but then there was two really big hills to climb before the finish. I ended up walking most of them. I wasn't at all upset that the 2 hour goal slipped away. I kept waving Kelly to go on and leave me, secretly hoping that she would so I could lay down in the street and die. She refused. She goaded me up that last hill and the finish line came into sight.

She yelled at me to wait for her as I took off in a sprint for the last quarter mile of the race. About half way I realized that this was going to give me a heart attack, and I slowed down, at which time Kelly caught back up to me. My left leg began to cramp, but fortunately my right one, the one I had worried about, held up fine. We finished strong and crossed the line together. I gave her a big hug and thanked her for making this first half marathon so special. The official time on the clock said 2:12 and some change. My Garmin said 2:08 and some change, which I am sure will be close to my net time, once the race results are in.

After getting my finisher's medal, some water, and something to eat, we headed back up the race course to find Mom and Bud and wait on Dee Dee. Dee Dee had issues with her knee in the seventh mile and ended up walking four miles. She finished in 3:19:00, and I ran the last quarter mile with her as she reached the finish line.

Why humble you ask? Because with all of these desires to run fast and be strong, I'm just wondering if I am in too much of a hurry to achieve. I'm going to ponder that a bit over the next couple of weeks as my triathlon training gets underway. Overall, I loved the race, the experience, the crowds. Little sister pushed me way harder than I would of pushed myself. I didn't really run "my race", but that's OK too. I will be back out there again, and next time, I will be better prepared.

And Kate, I hope you don't mind that I raised a salute to you with a glass of Guinness rather than gin! It was an Irish Pub after all.

Humbly yours,

Wes

ORN: 13.1 miles, 2:07:46, race pace, 9:45 miles, walk as needed

Friday, March 23, 2007

New Race Goal

From the website Runner's World:

ING Georgia Marathon And Half Marathon Attract Fast Talent in Inaugural Year
The elite field for Sunday's first Georgia Marathon includes, among the women, Wioletta Kryza of Poland, whose 24 career victories at 26.2 miles include the 2006 Montreal Marathon, and Valentina Levushkina, the 2006 Russian Half Marathon champ running her first full marathon. Jonathan Ndambuki, a Kenyan living in Santa Fe, could be the class of the men's field; he won the 2006 California International Marathon and has a personal best of 2:10:58. The half marathon entrants include Joseph Chirlee, who has run 1:02:18.

I will beat the winner of the marathon :-) Maybe you'll see me on TV as I chase after him! LOL.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Feel the Love

Before my thoughts turn entirely to the race this weekend, I wanted to say thanks. It has been an incredible nine month journey. A true beginning to what has turned into a new way of life for me. Thank you for your kind words and encouragement. Thank you for letting me come by your blogs and say oft-suspect stuff (with hardly a whimper of protest on your part) and share what I have learned. But most of all, thank you for just being here.

Love is such a strong word. It has so many different facets and levels. It's full of positives and even a few grey connotations. We'll add a new one, the Running/Blog Community Facet. Because I can. Because I choose too. And that's what this is all about, isn't it? It's all about me ;-)

Fade to black....

Wes
ING Half Marathon Runner #16969

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Dotting the i

OK. So this isn't my last post before the race. Suprise!! :-) Last night Jimmy played JV and varsity soccer at a nearby high school. Dee Dee managed to finagle the night off to watch his games. Afterwards, we made it home, cooked dinner for the boys and went out to run at 8 PM.

I started this half marathon training with a few runs with Dee Dee. After that, due to differences in pace and distance, we went our separate ways. We ran for almost exactly 30 minutes, on a cool, clear, crisp night. It could not have been more perfect. While I have one more run to do Thursday, last night I felt like, for this race, I am complete.

Wes

ORN: 2.3 miles, 30 minutes, easy pace, 13 minute miles, R5/W1

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

A Little Early

It's a little early for April Fools. Sorry, guys! Just trying to keep things interesting around here and not let the cobwebs grow or the dust to gather too much before shaking it. I also wanted to address the sock thing I got in the comments to my last post! LOL.

The big weekend I had last week really took its toll on my body. Sixteen miles one day, then doing seven the day after reffing really kicked my arse. Couple that with cross training, St. Patrick's Day, and an anniversary, and wooo! I'm ready for a vacation. The good news is that the muscles in my legs are getting that chiseled feeling from the taper, and the ever so slightly tender left knee and shin are doing just fine. I just have to remind myself not to sit on my leg at work, and thusly reduce the blood flow to my valuable knee (and other lower extremities).

Sticking to the plan... Today I have just 30 minutes of running. No cross training this week. One thirty minute run Thursday. One more blog post. Then its on to the big dance.

Wes

Monday, March 19, 2007

Injured

I knew it was going to happen. All those months of hard work and patience and following the plan, possibly going to waste. I noticed while lacing up the twin wonders yesterday that one of them is injured! Can you believe it? I have a hole developing in the lining along the heel. They are atill over 100 miles away from retirement too! What to do? What to do?

Not to worry about my feet though! I have been blessed since I have been running in that I have yet to develop a single blister. Knock on wood. I did get a major one on my big toe from my ref shoes, but not my running shoes. I always wear black ankle beater socks, and they appear to be lost in the shadows of the photo below.

Heard from little sis today. She will be here Wednesday! Suweet. Six days and counting....

Wes

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Sportin a New Do

The ING Georgia Marathon and Half Marathon has this charity thing. Every sporting event needs to have some charity aspect. For example, the Olympics leave behind numerous new sporting venues for the population of the host country. The ING Marathon and Half Marathon is sponsoring the fight against childhood obesity. For a donation, you get a brand new pair of orange shoe laces and almost the entire donation goes to local charities for the kids. I had been wanting to do this for a while, so last week, I made a donation on my and Dee Dee's behalf, and the laces came in the mail yesterday. Woo hoo! Here are the twin wonders sporting their new hair-do!!



Ain't they puuurrrrty! There just isn't anything like a new look to make a set of twin wonders feel special now, is there? Quick recap on the running... Thursday I got my 5K in at the soccer fields. I really luv running there now that I have my Garmin. The weather here was cold, sunny, but windy yesterday. With it being St. Patrick's Day, I didn't have time to get in a run or a bike ride. So, I went ahead and did my run today. Like Sarah said, it is absolutely gorgeous today. It's a little windy, but in the 50's, and a fantastic running day. I stuck with the plan and did 3.45 miles at around 10:30 avg mmp. The hills of my old stomping grounds are still here.

Finally, today is my eighteenth wedding anniversary. Happy Anniversary, my beloved Dee Dee! What's the secret to a long lasting marriage? Focusing on what's important. There are very, very few things that happen in life that turn into an issue of marriage. For those of you in the early stages of a life long commitment, work hard. Marriage is not a fairy tale. For those of you whose partner's fit you like an old glove, I see you nodding and shaking your head. Carry on.

Out to Party,

Wes

ORN: 3.45 miles, 35 minutes, normal pace, 10:26 mmp avg, R4/W1

Thursday, March 15, 2007

P.E.S.

Yes. It's true. I have come to the unalterable conclusion that I suffer from, shhhhh, P.E.S. For those of you who are not up on your acronyms, that's Post Exercise Stress disorder. This phenomenon occurs after taking your body to not so familiar (and) uncharted waters. The symptoms are bloating, eating everything in sight, and a strong desire to lie in bed in the morning moaning and groaning about sore body parts.

I am happy to report that I am starting to feel like my old self today. While I am still suffering from the last symptom, everything else is starting to come around. No doubt, my usual bout of sluggishness this morning was brought on by my 100 meter test yesterday. My usual 25 minute drive to the gym (from work) turned into an ugly one hour and fifteen minute commute. I was late. I threw on my brand new pair of Jammers and hit the pool. For all of my swimming tri gods and goddesses, here are my times, please feel free to comment:

1. 1:28
2. 1:39
3. 1:40

Not bad at all for a first test. I would have been happy to have three trial runs all in the 1:30s, but that just ain't the way it happened. I'll take the average of 1:36 seconds and go from there. What I do know is that my endurance really really sucks :-) I have a lot to work on.

Oh, my poor legs! Nothing serious mind ya, just a dull "I'm reminding you we're still here" ache in the shins and knees. I'm still going to try and get my 30 minute run in tonight, thunderstorms be damned, but I won't be doing any sub-10 minute miles.

Alright everybody! Gear up!! Lisa is doing her first half marathon this weekend. Let's show her the love and support we've all come to expect...

Wes

OSN: 500 meters, 1x100 warmup, 3x100 test, 1x100 warm down

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Answer Is Five Plus

What was the question? Zip........ The computer roars off, calculating the question for millions of years. Do you remember that scene from the book, "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"? I'll summarize for you short and sweet. Humans built a computer to answer the question to the meaning of life. The computer processed and processed for millions of years. It had special people taking care of it who had by that time forgotten its purpose. After millions of years, the computer stopped and said, "47", or something like that. The attendants were confused and asked, "What was the question?" The computer took off reverse engineering the question for millions of years. LOL. That folks, is funny. I guess you had to be there!!

The question I answered was how many miles do I run during a soccer game? I wore my Garmin Sunday night to my adult games. I did 2+ miles running the line, on a scale of 1-10 it was about a 4. The center I did was a very fast and exciting paced game. I did 5.3 miles, and on a scale of 1-10 I would rank it about an 8. So now I have something to go by, and thus, I put 7 miles down for my running log for Sunday. Well deserved I say.

Tonight I did a leisurely 3.11 miles at the soccer fields, on the grass, at an 11 minute mile pace. Tomorrow I have my 100 meter test for swimming. This is the last week I will do cross training. I want to get in a bike ride Sunday, but after that, its a few tapering runs and nothing else.

Rock and roll, my friends,

Wes

ORN: 3.11 miles, 34 minutes, easy pace, 11:05 avg mmp, R8/W1

Monday, March 12, 2007

ING Georgia Half Marathon Route Report

The Tail of the Absent Minded Professor

Another big day for me. Almost, but not quite equivalent to a race day. For the first time, I was going to run with a group of people, and not just any group of people, but the local running club. I was excited, and I prepared that way. I laid all my clothes out. I got Dee Dee's Camelbak and the technological wonders ready to go the night before. I even laid out a turn by turn directions on a piece of paper and laid it by the Camelbak on the kitchen table.

I awoke that morning to absolute quiet. Everyone in the house was fast asleep, and the noise of rain on the roof was delightedly absent. I got dressed and went downstairs to have breakfast and let the pack of hounds out. I noticed a slight dampness on the deck. I thought for sure I'd miss the rain and it was going to be a good day. I downed a bowl of cereal and some water, grabbed the Camelbak and headed out. Shortly after leaving my neighborhood the rain began to come down in torrents. Inside I cringed a bit, but outwardly I was happy at the thought of playing in the rain.

The North Springs Marta station was the anointed meeting spot, and I got there just a little early. Within fifteen minutes of my arrival, Donna and another lady (sorry I'm bad with names, Paulie??) showed up. We hopped on the train to Underground Atlanta and had a pleasant if uneventful ride downtown. It was at this point that I realized I had left my route on the kitchen table, and none of the other runners had brought one either. Oh, I was furious with myself, but the other gals took it all in stride. Donna said, good naturedly, that it would all work out, and we could remember as much of the route as we could from memory. Back in grade school the nuns used to call me the absent minded professor. This is why...

After departing the train at the Underground, we made our way up to the intersection of Peachtree Street and Alabama Street. This was the starting point of the Half Marathon, and we were meeting John, the running club president there. One of the first things we noticed upon reaching street level is that they are doing construction there, and the start of the race will have to be moved. The rain was just a slight drizzle at this point and a cold wind was blowing down the Atlanta streets. We were ready to run and get warm! After getting organized, we took off. John was going to wait for another runner who was running a shorter route with him. He would meet us at the half way point of the race.

The Half Marathon leaves the Underground heading north on Peachtree Street. It starts off with a quick downhill followed by short uphill then a rather lengthy downhill to the first turn at Ralph McGill Blvd. As a matter of fact, it is pretty much all downhill from there through Baker Street, Piedmont, and Jackson Street to The Martin Luther King Jr. Park. Once you reach the park, it flattens out with a few gentle rolling hills. Here, we made a mistake and instead of heading right to Edgewood Avenue, we ended up making a left and ended up on Freedom Parkway. The rain had stopped at this point, and the sun was trying to come out.

Originally, we had planned to skip Freedom Parkway, but in a way, I'm glad we didn't. They have a bike/running trail next to the parkway and it was a very pleasant run. Coming down freedom parkway will be a quick downhill into a valley then back up a slight uphill to a flat run to the end. There, you turn around and run back the same way to the end of Freedom Parkway where you enter the neighborhoods before Piedmont Park.

Running through the neighborhoods was nice as well. There were a few gentle ups and downs, but mostly I remember flat and a few long nice downhills. When you make a right on Park Street to head to Piedmont Park, you go up a nice little steep hill, but its not a major deal. The run through the park and around the lake is nice and flat. Once you reach the end of the park, you will begin the long climb back to the start/finish of the race.

Exiting the park on 14th street is a rather steep uphill climb of about two city blocks to Peachtree Street. Once you hit Peachtree Street, you are about 2.25 miles away from start of the race, and its almost all up hill. Its not a hard uphill, but its up hill, kind of in a stair step fashion. This will be the hardest part of the race. As you get to the end, there's the nice little downhill to finish strong.

Based on my training run, my race strategy is going to be to take advantage of all that territory between the start and Piedmont Park, then hang on for dear life at the end. I'm a bit disappointed that I left the directions behind. I really wanted to run the entire route, and I went through a lot of effort to do just that. I guess running seventy percent of the route from memory ain't that bad, and it will have to do.

I said goodbye to my new friends at the Underground. They were finished. The Garmin registered 9.3 miles at this point. The sun was shining, and I had six more miles to do. I took off down Peachtree Street and enjoyed the long downhill run to Piedmont Park. There, I did two more laps around the lake before heading to the Arts Center train station for the ride back to the car.

When I got home, I plugged my Garmin into the computer. As sometimes happens, it corrected my mileage and reported that I did 16 miles instead of the fifteen I had planned. This happens sometimes when the Garmin loses its cookies on the route. 16 miles! Whoa! No wonder I was so sore and tired. Now its taper time, leading up to the biggest race of my life.

Wes

ORN: 16 miles, 3:03:33, endurance pace, 11:25 avg mmp, Walk as needed

Friday, March 09, 2007

My Butt Hurts

I don't know why, but swimming makes my butt hurt. I mean... I don't mind the fact that its been helping to strip my glutes of fat cells. That's a good thing. I don't even mind that sitting in hard chairs for prolonged periods actually hurts now. That's a positive as well. However, making the muscles in my buttocks tight and sore is carrying it a bit too far. It wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't primarily the right cheek. I feel lopsided! Do you think anyone notices?

Based on the soreness of my arse, I went for a nice easy three miler yesterday. Started out slow. Waited for the soreness to ease a bit, then kicked it up a notch to finish strong.

1. 12:10
2. 11:10
3. 9:45

Wednesday I did make it to the gym for my swim. I know I said I'd do 800 easy, but I ended up doing 1000 meters because I wanted to. Simple as that. It wasn't until I woke up yesterday that I noticed by butt was in a state of disrespect. This week coming up, I think I'm going to follow Jess' lead and do a 100 meter time trial. To see where I'm at! I'd like to see how I compare to great triathletes like Jess, Jodi, and Kate. OK. Well. Maybe not Jodi. She's known as the Great Lakes Dolphin, a rare species I'm told.

Tomorrow is my ING practice run. I am SO excited. The weather forecast calls for rain!! Woo hoo! Doesn't get any better than that people. Too freakin bad. I'm gonna see if Dee Dee will let me borrow her Camelbak backpack so I can carry a digital camera. Lots of fun and pics soon, I hope.

Have a great weekend,

Wes

ORN: 3 miles, 33:06, easy pace, 11:02 AVG mmp, all run
OSN: 1000 meters, 1x100 warm up, 8x100 intervals, 1x100 warm down

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Warning!!

Stand back and nobody gets hurt!! I'm not sure what is going on, but I am eating everything in sight. Last night, it was 10 chocolate chip cookies and two mini cupcakes. Today, its cheese straws that some saboteur left on the table in the break room! Grrrrrrr. The good news is that I dropped three more pounds since the last time I weighed myself. Since July, my resting heart rate has dropped five points to 51! How cool is that? I won't get really excited about the weight loss until I drop below 190.


Back to the pool today. I think I'm going to do 800 meters, easy. Got to save some strength for the long run this weekend.

Wes

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Riddle Me This

Why is it, do you think, that you can feel so sore and not at all like running, after a hard weekend of running/riding, but then, when you get out there and get'er done, you feel, just splendid? You english teachers can like, totally ignore the propriety or lack thereof of the first sentence.

I had lots of options today to get my run in. Got up early this morning to stuff the crock pot with Fiesta Chicken. I was up four times last night taking care of various sick dogs and Dee Dee hasn't been feeling well either. Despite the beautiful day, I opted to run at soccer practice tonight. I figured it would be closer to the ideal temperature of 68 degrees, and I wouldn't have to bother showering until I got home.

Tried something new tonight. I used the Garmin to do intervals. They really weren't all that different from my normal run, because I picked 4 minute intervals with 1 minute of rest, but I got the idea, and I liked it. I was running on semi-soft soccer fields and I pushed myself a bit harder then I should have. I did 7 intervals with a warm up and cool down for a total of 4 miles. Most of my intervals were in the ~10 minute mile pace range.

Tonight, my muscles are tingling a bit, but feeling good after being appropriately loosened up and worked out. The Fiesta Chicken was alright, not great, but having dinner ready when you get home...priceless.

Finish strong,

Wes

ORN: 4 miles, 43 minutes, normal pace, 10:50 avg miles, R4/W1

Monday, March 05, 2007

Coincidence?

Fifteen days before the half marathon, my training plan calls for a fifteen mile run. This will be the final long run for this phase of my training. After that, it will be time to take up tri-training in all seriousness. Is this coincidence, or is it fate? I'm not superstitious. I'm not into fantasy and fairy tales. However, when the chaos of today's life comes together in unexpected, yet pleasing ways, I take note, and I am pleased.

I've had an exchange of emails with the members of the local running club. I will be meeting them at the Underground Saturday morning at 9 AM. We are going to run the half marathon route. We will be doing all 13.1 miles, with the exception of a short stretch that is normally not open to pedestrian traffic. Not a problem, I say. I need to do 15. I would have had to tack on more miles anyways. Whats a few more?

Is a 12 minute per mile pace a problem? Not in the slightest. Not only are we going to hit a lot of lights, but we have a lot of different people of varying skills running with us. The objective here is not to race, but to scout the course, socialize and most of all, have fun.

Dancing on,

Wes

ORN: Rest

Sunday, March 04, 2007

On The Road Again

Ignorance is indeed bliss. Woke up early this morning (for me) and went for a bike ride. Not really sure what the temperature was, but it had to be in the thirties with a 20-25 MPH wind. Today was the first time that I have actually ridden my bike on the "road" and shared it with the other drivers. I'm still here :-) It was also my longest ride to date. I did an 18 mile loop. Over hill and over dale Wes will not fail. Not sure my muscles were ready for that, but I'll survive.

Here's to a last hurrah for Old Man Winter. Bring on the Spring rains and the sunshine!!

Wes

OCN: 18 miles, 1:25:30 12.7 MPH

Saturday, March 03, 2007

More to Give

First order of business for the day! Everyone go by and say "Hi!" to my new blogger friend Nat. Not only is she a budding novelist and running goddess, but she's a fountain of wisdom to boot. She has recommended two races that are excellent choices for first timers like me. The Silver Comet Trail Half Marathon is in October and she rates it flat and fast. The second race, the Rocket City Half Marathon, is in December, and she rates it flat and fast as well. I don't know why I waited so long to search for Atlanta bloggers.

The Rocket City Marathon looks like a good choice for a first time marathon. Since I have so long to choose my race, I am uber flexible, and I'm not really concerned which one it is. I just want to have fun. The only thing better than flat and fast is down hill and fast :-)

I was looking at my splits from my first six mile run back in August of last year. I thought, "Damn! I don't remember running at that pace!" That's a really satisfying feeling. Forgive me for my moment of smuggedness.

Todays' run called for three miles, so three miles it is. Based on my recent treadmill pace, I decided to rock my run. Here are the splits:

1. 10:04
2. 9:32
3. 10:14
4. 3:36 (7:57 pace)

I started out a little sore and needed to wait for the stiffness in my muscles to work themselves out before I really kicked it in a bit. In all fairness, mile 1 has a lot of downhill. Mile 2 is almost totally flat, and mile 3, the one I'm really proud of, is almost all uphill. That pace for the last half mile is just awesome and shows me that I have more to give.

I'm still chasing the ghosts of the runner's past, the freshman high school cross country runner, the private first class in the army doing eight minute miles with ease. Will I catch him? Will my fingers slip through him like a mirage? I don't know, and I'm not sure I really care. I'm just having a good time on the chase. If we catch the fox, and there are no more foxes, then what are we to do?

Carrying on,

Wes

ORN: 3.45 miles, 33:27, tempo pace, 9:41 miles, R4/W1

Friday, March 02, 2007

One of The Toughest Marathons

After reviewing my 52 Week Plan, I have determined that I have 16 weeks of training between the half marathon and the time that I am supposed to run THE marathon. That time frame puts me slap dab in the middle of July! Sorry, Michelle!! The only marathon that is reasonable for me to try to attend is the Grandfather Mountain Marathon in North Carolina. It bills itself as one of the toughest marathons in North America. It has some serious elevation. It took me all of two seconds to think, "Ummmmm. I don't think so!!" Now that that's out of the way, I'm going to substract 16 weeks from Thanksgiving and kick-start my marathon training on that day. It is up to me to make sure I am at the same level, if not better, of fitness when that day arrives.

Yesterday, I did a 5K on the treadmill during lunch at work. Nothing spectacular, except that I did four tenths of a mile at 7 MPH and was semi-comfortable at it! I was even more delighted when I realized that that was an 8:30 minute mile pace. Sweet!

I ran on the treadmill yesterday because we had some nasty storms coming through Georgia. In case you didn't hear, we lost 9 young people in Enterprise, Alabama, 3 in Americus, Georgia, and this morning, a bus load full of college baseball players crashed in Atlanta on I-75 southbound. We lost 6 young souls there. Hug your kids everyday people, and don't let the last thing they hear from you be a harsh word.

Hugs,

Wes

ORN: 3.11 miles, 34 minutes, normal pace, 11 minute miles, R5/W1

Thursday, March 01, 2007

On Proration at 400 Meters

Another small victory on the path to tri-greatness. I did my 400 meters in the pool yesterday, non-stop, in 8:26 seconds. I was happy with that. Another small worry to cross off my list.

The solution to my current conundrum in regards to the ever changing training plan is proration. I will pick a good base for each of my disciplines, start from there, and then prorate them upwards at the same percentage as the base training plan. Voila! A whole new training plan to match my current level. The geekiness of the solution leaves me giddy.

Thanks for all the helpful suggestions on the marathon. The problem I am facing here is that I NEED to do the marathon close to the place it resides on my training plan. When I get home tonight, I'll take a look and see how that June 10th marathon fits in Michelle, and if it works, I'll give it some serious thought. Did I mention that I hate to fly?

Finish strong!

Wes

OSN: 1000 meters, 1x400, 5x100, 2x50