Saturday, June 28, 2008

Splish, Splash...Good Ole Fun

The deluge that greeted me as I left the abode this morning was merely a blip on the radar I told myself as I made my way to LakeShore Park to run with Five Fingers. I was feeling really good after D.D.M.C. #6 and Five Fingers and I decided to run an easy 10 on the trail.

Good thing. The trails were a sloppy, muddy, squishy mess....but man was it fun!! Speed was not the order of business unless it was to get away from the squitos...which I think today had a hankering for Five Finger's Mutt Blood as they encircled him throughout the course. Neither of our Garmins (305 or 405) could maintain a signal very well so we just bounded along and had the entire trail to ourselves until we ended up back in the parking lot looking like a couple of kids who had thrown mud at each other all day in the sandbox!!

The only way to top off a great trail run was to head to Zumba's for some chicken taco's....MMMM

Thursday, June 26, 2008

D.D.M.C. #6 - Loops

End of the month is drawing to a close and schedule was actually looking busy with family, kickball, scheduled runs and such...better get the DDMC in!

Start Time: 4:21 a.m.

Starting Temp: 67 degrees/91 % humidity --YUCKOLA

First Loop - 5.25 miles/55:07/ 10:29 per mile pace
- My beloved border collie, Nemo, would never be allowed in a sanctioned marathon, but this is the D.D.M.C! Slow to warm up, but I could tell this was going to be a slow run due to the humidity.

Second Loop - 5.27 miles/ 49:09/ 9:20 per mile pace
- Popped an Endurolyte pill and off I went, felt pretty good.

Third Loop - 7.39 miles/ 1 hr 12 min/ 9:50 per mile pace
- Popped another Endurolyte pill, took off the reflective vest, grabbed the water bottle and shuffle and listened to a great little podcast called: Running with the Pack. Ingested 2 Apple Cinnamon Hammer Gels...just like warm apple pie.

Fourth Loop - 8.30 miles/ 1 hr 23 min/ 10:01 per mile pace
- Popped one more Endurolyte pill and tried to sneak out of house, but Dirrty Feather abandoned Curious George, got off the couch of doom, and demanded to go. Pushing her definitely made me keep my focus and along the way we developed a new game by where she put her feet up on the adjustable top and I would tap them which was sure to get her to giggle and laugh.

Total Distance: 26.20
Total Time: 4 hr 20 min


Not my fastest marathon this year but I believe with the use of some supplements I was able to stave off any cramping and it kept my sodium loss to a minimum. Felt pretty easy and my heart rate data showed that the run was done in the recovery zone? Halfway done with the DDMC!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Social Circles

If you think about it for a moment our social circles and whom we choose to associate is largely our choice. We may not have a choice when it comes to family and work, but we do have a choice when it comes to our friends, acquaintances, etc. Not so when you have children.

Dirrty Feather and I went to the park this morning and today it finally dawned on me after the experience that I was excluded from a social circle. Until you have kids, you can't begin to fathom or understand the entirely different world that exists around them. There are rules, and norms, and yes social circles. You really don't get to decide who you want to be friends with, you do it more based on whether or not your child gets along with their child and then you either get lucky or tolerate them.

The social circle this morning was comprised entirely of women who were chatting about the magic blanket that could soothe a fussy newborn, who was going to Vail for the summer and what a wonderful play date this was. No talk was directed at me. Maybe because as I later figured (in my head) that I had two strikes against me: one I was a man and two, maybe to them it looked liked I was just taking a day off to give the stay at home mom a respite. Or maybe they thought that I did not want to chat that I was not included or even asked. Probably figured that I had nothing of any value to add. Not true, if asked I could have demonstrated my technique for burritoing a baby to ensure no fussing. Maybe not, but this is where it starts on the playground where our children pick up on what we do and use it as a framework for who they are to become.

In dirrty feather's maybe mind all she cared about was getting her fair share on the swing, but she was taking it all in and learning about social circles in her own little way.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Motivating Quote

"The thought of later in the day having to explain to myself why I didn't run that morning is enough to get me out the door."


- courtesy of RW quote of the day

Monday, June 23, 2008

This is all I have to do...

Today marks the first day of summer vacation for me, so for all intensive purposes, the only thing i have to do besides hanging with the family is RUN. The near two month break is certainly welcomed as i am sure not to have things thrown at me, students tell me where to go and what i can do with myself and the only time i will have to see the police up close is at a parade.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Summer Solstice Run

Dirrty Feather was out this week, and Little Dirt Dawg was in as the Summer Solstice Run in Northville took place today. Dirrty Girl said she couldn't push either one for the duration of the 10k, so that left me to push Little Dirt Dawg before the kids run. Well over 3 feet and nearing 40lbs, I think this might be the last season for Little Dirt Dawg in the baby jogger.

We started near the back, because even though Dirrty Feather was still sound asleep at grandma's, she had left me with a reminder of her. A similar head cold and goobly, gobbly stuffy nose. It was not looking to be a fast day, and Dirrty Girl, who has run a mere handful of times since her 1/2 marathon just wanted to not be the last person.
Off went the gun and Little Dirt Dawg and I took off at a reasonable pace. This is where being in the back of the pack is not good; people with headphones who just weave on the road in tune to the music and have no conception of space forcing me to apply the brake several times to not run up their ankles. We managed to squeak out a 7:56 mile including a rather large hill. Pushing a 4 yr and 40lb kid up hills is not conducive to speed.

We got into a groove after that and started rolling: 7:09/7:06/6:56/6:53/6:51. Little Dirt Dawg would spot the mile markers and then tell me how many more miles to go. He also reported that he did not like the water served at the aid stations. In any event, as we rolled down the hill into the final .2, I started sprinting with Little Dirt Dawg and we managed to catch a few people. With a clear shot to the finish line, I hear labored breathing and footsteps behind me. I didn't turn around, but put my head down and ran faster, pushing Little Dirt Dawg to near uncontrollable speeds to finish in 44:08 (Timex Time). A tie for 5th place in the 30-34 division with the labored breathing, footstep pounding guy @ the finish.

No sooner than finishing the 10k, did Little Dirt Dawg and I hear that his race was a mere 10 minutes away. Not one to be unprepared, Little Dirt Dawg took some time to do some stretching.

Little Dirt Dawg lined up near the back, and once the race began broke into his easy going loping style taking in the sights and sounds of the park as he traversed the course.

With medal in hand from his race, Little Dirt Dawg and I were able to locate Dirrty Girl, and he raced with her to a 1 hr and 6 min finish. Not a bad way to start summer vacation!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Run in, Pedal back

My commute to work is about 20 miles via the expressway and on a good day can take as little as 25 minutes. I know this because before kids I would race home as soon as I could leave and see what time I could be laying down for an afternoon siesta.

In what has now become a yearly tradition during my week of work post student, I try to run to work and get a lift home or ride my bike both ways at least once. Today was the first Run in, Pedal back.


In order to be there by 7 am, i had to leave my house @ 4:03 am. It is really not a scenic run given the mile roads and industrial areas I had to traverse, but watching the sun come up and the cool morning air made it enjoyable. Took about 2 hours to warm up and then i started feeling really good. To bad i had to end @ 18.25 miles and 2 hr 50 min later.


Several hours later after doing work that made watching paint dry exciting, i hopped on my newly refurbished Cannondale F600 that was meticulously cared for by the Mechanics class @ school and headed out. The wind had certainly picked up, but I was feeling good. Good until the right pedal my foot was clipped into stopped pedaling. The pedal had come unhinged so to speak. I had to half pedal, walk to the nearest gas station and ask a mechanic if i could borrow a wrench to which he replied " Are you gonna stay right here with that?"

With some effort i got the pedal back on, but perhaps in my haste or stupidity it did not sit level so i looked like a limping cyclist going. Finished up @ home with 18.94 miles in 1 hr 21 min.

A fun day overall and never a dull moment.

Monday, June 16, 2008

DDMC #6 - A no go

I was really looking forward to doing the DDMC @ Island Lake yesterday morning but some version of whatever Dirrty Girl had Friday and Saturday gripped me and rendered me useless. In this rare case that I actually practiced common sense and listened to my body, I chose not to run, and slept for most of Father's Day. Oh well, with an easy week @ work, no students, i should be able to get DDMC #6 in fairly easily. Look for a possible makeup scheduled run.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Run Drugs Out of Town 10k

Today, Dirrty Feather and I ventured out to participate in the Run Out of Town 10K put on by Just Say Run. The group has a noble, two folded purpose: Raise awarness against teen drug use and to raise $ for the Livionia Save Our Youth Task Force.I attempted to talk with Dirrty Feather about our race plans for today's event, but she instead decided to catch a quick nap prior to the start.
Held on Hines Drive, the race was an out an back course and the races consisted of a 1 mile walk, 5k run/walk, and a 10k run/walk. I commandered our steed near the front when the race director stated that all baby joggers and walkers must move to the back. Not a chance, I said to myself. If I was going to be even mildly competitive today, I was not going to weave in and out of traffic to get near the front. He went on to say that you will get the same time because you are all wearing a timing chip. And then the gun went off.

Mile 1 was covered in a spry 6:39 and there was not a whole lot of traffic in front of us. A few comments of "way to go" and "I wish I could run like that with someone pushing me" were the norm but we seemed to be moving up. Nearing the turnaround for the 5k participants, the crowd really thinned out for those covering the 10K. Mile 2 was covered in 7:01.

We had the road pretty much all to ourselves, so i was able to push Dirrty Feather up a bit, run and then push again. As we got closer to Mile 3 which was covered in 7:08 and the turnaround, I started counting from the leaders on back. Now, this was supposed to be a fun run with my daughter, but I gotta admit I thought I was right up there. The leaders had made the turn and as I started to count back to me, I was in 6th! Holy crap.

No doubt that gave me a bit of a surge as we covered Mile 4 in 6:56. I started thinking with a bit more effort and maybe longer pushes to Dirrty Feather we could catch 5th place. Mile 5 though showed a time of 7:07 as I had to stop at the aid station to dump some water over my head.

However, I marked the 5th place guy and slowly but surely we seemed to reel him in. Passing the 5k marker for the turnaround we ran into most of the walkers for that event and so began a zigzagging effort as no matter how many times I yelled "On your left" there was no movement. Maybe because of the crowds we were able to sneak up on the guy in 5th place but we passed him and covered Mile 6 in 6:41.

With the finish line in sight, I glanced back over my shoulder to see the guy making an effort to catch us, but this was our day and Dirrty Girl and I finished with a time of 43:08 good enough for 5th overall and 1st place in the men's 30-34 age group. I went up to the sullen lad after the race and told him good job. He commented that he was embarrassed that he had just got beaten by a guy with a baby stroller.

Post race refreshments included Jimmy John's and Stucchi's ice cream which made up for the almost 2 hr delay for the awards ceremony. However, due to our high placing, I thought Dirrty Feather should experience the award which she did.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Fun Run Series Award Banquet

Participants in the Fun Run Series covered just over 540 miles throughout the course of the 2007-2008 school year. My award this year was meant to remind them to hydrate throughout the summer in order to prepare for the rigorous FR series that will begin its 3rd year in September. Bottoms up!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Father's Day Frolick = D.D.M.C. #6

Date: Sunday June 15th
Place: Island Lake
Time: 8:30 a.m. Or thereabouts

This will mark the halfway mark of my own little goofy self imposed challenge. Feel free to join me for 1-2 loops of the blue to yellow loop for a non sanctioned, fat ass style, and garmin determined frolick.

Not looking to run fast, but rather to enjoy the experience and get some mileage in on the trails.

Post a comment or email me @ indicating an interest.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

It's Last Call.... for Action!

Every runner knows that a well rounded training program includes
cross training. With summer making its presence known this week, it was time to renew my love affair and cross training regime known as KICKBALL.

Last year, as substitute/scrub/fill in for the Sex Panthers, I became reacquainted with the playground game most of us abandoned in grade school. Often drinking more than we scored, the Sex Panthers were a flash in the pan/fly by night operation that somehow got moved up to the "A" league.
Declining several offers, I remained true to the man and organization that I was fortunate to play with last year, an in an effort to inspire us all we were christened Double Deuce.

If for more than nothing else, kickball represents a great opportunity to return to my roots in organized team competition and I can't think of a better group of teammates to share it with. You can follow the misadventures of Double Deuce here.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Dexter 1/2 Marathon

Dirrty Girl and I had made the agreement at the begining of the year that if I was going to do the D.D.M.C. then, I would have to then run with her @ Dexter. It was time to pay my dues today but along the way we had also managed to recruit our friends Lightning and Missile to come up from Cbus and join us.

Small talk last night revolved around how they had all not gotten in enough training and the reasons ran the gammut from graduate school, to work, to hockey league, to tennis, to whatever. I chose to remain mum on that subject. In any event, early to bed and early to rise with a departure time of 6:15 am. Over coffee that I made according to Missile as mud in nature (PERFECT!) and scones, the race plans formed, Missile and Lightning were hoping to break 2:05 and Dirrty Girl had 2 goals: not to be the last person and use this race as a measuring stick for her already determined fall race.

My job was to be D.G's sherpa. Carry her new favorite fuel, Luna Moons, grab her water at the aid stations and snap some photos. I was able to accomplish two of the three due to D.G. not screwing on the cap on the water bottle tight enough and rendering my phone, wet and now useless.

The race began promptly @ 8:50 and soon Missile and Lightning were a distant memory bounding off. Dirrty Girl began strongly clocking the first 3 miles @ sub 10 min. mile pace but then began to slide backwards a bit. Her fueling strategy was sound, water and luna moons every 3 miles and dousing herself liberally along the way, but even she commented that she should have run some more hills and outside a bit more often. She looked to enter her Zen mode by having a word with God for several miles and kept a fairly even pace as the hills seemed to become more frequent the closer the finish line.

With a new course, we were able to see Missile and Lightning as they drove home towards a 2:03 finish and Dirrty Girl and I finished in 2:27:50. Not last and plenty of room for improvement come fall @ Columbus.

Post race rehydration and fueling @ Zingermans. Great Job Dirrty Girl!!