Sunday, February 28, 2010
I didn't race, instead I decided to go out and volunteer with the Pacers Ambassador program and despite the cold weather I had a great time cheering on the runners and working the water stop at the half way mark. Early on we set up the cups and poured water and really were wondering if anyone would even want the water with hold cold it was outside, but believe it or not a lot of runners wanted their water...I even saw one that poured some over his head!
As the runners started coming past us a Pacers sponsored runner was leading both the men and women races and they both had a pretty clear lead, don't know if they won but I think it was a safe guess that they did. A lot of runners were out, the race sold out and I think they all had a pretty good time.
If you haven't already signed up, Pacers has another race coming up, the Four Court Four Miler and you can get more information here.
Also, thank you to Potomac Runners for running the water stop and making us feel welcome!
Saturday, February 27, 2010
Terrain: Rolling hills pretty much non-stop. I ran on back roads most of the route until the end when I had to run on snow covered sidewalk or main highway.
I decided that today would be my return to trying to get in a long run on Saturdays, but I wasn't willing/able to wake up in time to run at 8 AM with the Pacers Fun Run Groups. I mapped out a 9 mile route around a lake near my apartment, figuring it would give me a chance to see my new neighborhood and figure out my way around it...well the first part turned out to be right, I got terribly lost on my run!
This route, when mapped on mapmyrun.com appears to be flat and looks like it'll be a nice and scenic run, wow are they wrong on the flat part. Nearly every side street I ran down featured a decent accent and decent...though I felt like I was really getting robbed on my descents and was not getting nearly enough rest. I was also supposed to be able to turn left at one point and cross a bridge...well I never saw it and ended up on a main road. I turned back into the community but didn't recognize where I was at all, so I asked someone walking a dog how to get back onto the Columbia Pike, the road I live on. She gave me directions but I was so far back on a main road that it made the last 2 miles quite nerve wracking since sidewalks were non-existent under the snow and running with cars going 45 miles an hour next to you is not the greatest of feelings.
Overall I'd rate it as a pretty decent run, I thought I was going at a faster pace than I was, but I think I lost a lot of time on the hills.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Weather: Stopped raining, but paths had slush because of it!
Terrain: Pretty flat except near the the end. The paths were mostly clear of snow but some areas were still covered.
This morning I made my return to the Greenberry running group and realized that it's about the same distance from the new group I joined, which is great because I can jump between groups depending on my schedule now!
The paths were mostly clear but we definitely encountered a few areas where the paths have not seen much sun and the snow still was covering the path. I ran at a pretty comfortable pace but at the end as I made my climb up the large ending hill I was definitely feeling it and doing everything I could to keep the running going. Overall my time was 44:18 so I went at ABOUT 8:18 a mile, which isn't as fast as the other day but this time I had some hills to deal with and I was going at a comfortable pace with a friend.
Sunday, February 21, 2010
During a race I really think they should have a setting that says I want to run a 3:30 or whatever, and if you're not on pace it tells you occasionally that you can speed up or slow down. During the marathon's I liked having a friend wearing a Garmin (I think) and he was able to tell us if we were ahead or behind or estimated finish based on his watch. When they come out with version 2, I think this is something they should definitely try to include.
If you want to hook it into your iPod their is no way to connect it and strap it down to your arm together. The saleswoman made it seem like if I wanted them connected I would all but be destined to hold it in my hand for the duration of my run...which once in a while I don't mind but that can get old and annoying really fast. It makes sense though, one of their sales points is that it works with ANY mp3 player, so they'd inevitably leave some of the mp3 players in the cold by not making a case that fits their product as well...but iPod is the biggest mp3 player so you should make that accessory.
Just my 2 cents on the product, mind you I do not own one. I'm a low budget runner and I want to make sure I'm going to really like what I getting if I will be spending a decent dime on the cool new gadget.
To see my original blog entry on the Adidas miCoach, go here
If Adidas wants to send me a free one to review, I'm open to that idea haha
*please let me know if any of this information is incorrect, it is based on my conversation with a salesperson at the store.
Saturday, February 20, 2010
I started off at a pretty quick pace for not being out running in 2 weeks, but I think part of that was just the excitement of getting to run again. I ran with the iPod my sister gave me since mine broke a few weeks back and it helped me get through the run, and I was able to use the timer on it to keep checking my pace. Overall I was happy with my splits, they were APPROXIMATELY:
Mile 1: 7:15
Mile 2: 7:45
Mile 3: 8:00
Mile 4: 8:00
Mile 5: 8:00
Mile 6: 7:20
After about mile 2 I was thinking to myself, well I haven't run in 2 weeks...maybe I'll do 3 miles and go home but then I decided I'd punish myself for thinking about giving up and add a mile at the end, and try to do it hard. For miles 4 and 5 I decided let's just relax and enjoy the run and then go as hard as possible on mile 6...at that's unfortunately all I had left in me!
After the run I had a nice strawberry-chocolate protein shake...yumm
Thursday, February 18, 2010
Well, today I got a little more into the search and went to one of my favorite sites for clothes with funny/cute sayings across every spectrum, Cafe Press! I figured I would share some of the funny ones, maybe I'll be able to convince Erin that I need one or two of these.
To see more go here
Thursday, February 11, 2010
"John Hancock Financial today announced the return of 2009 Boston Marathon champions Deriba Merga (2009) of Ethiopiaand Salina Kosgei (2009) of for the 114th running of the race on April 19. John Hancock has also signed past champions Robert Kipkoech Cheruiyot (2003, 2006-2008) and Catherine Ndereba (2000, 2001, 2004, 2005) of Kenya Kenya, Dire Tune (2009) of Ethiopia, and Lidiya Grigoryeva (2007) of ." Russia
When I started up it didn't want me to do a workout since I've done 2 days in a row, but luckily I was able to override that and do a workout anyway. This workout had a lot of the same routines as the first day, alternating lunges, reverse lunges, jumping lunges (I HATE THESE), squats, and an inline skating bit.
I was able to get through most of the workout fine but when it came to the jumping lunges...I was struggling and I think my legs are looking forward to the 2 day break when I travel up to New Jersey this weekend. Hopefully if I find a shovel I can get outside and shovel my car out too, that will be another good work out today!
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
They had me doing mostly lunges which I've already grown to hate and some squatting...then they mixed in some other stuff that was strange like dancing and tennis. The workout was only about 20 minutes and I did not really feel like I really broke a sweat, but my legs got a decent workout, I think I will call it a good recovery.
Within the next week or so I think I'm going to do the 30-day challenge, it will help me with my leg workouts, adding to my normal runs but it will help me build up a core (hopefully). I think I'll start to wake up just a LITTLE bit earlier...like 4:45-5ish and get in a good 20 minutes to start my day...we'll see!
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
All in all, I think on days I can not get out and run, and even on my rest days maybe doing the 20 minute light workout will have to become part of my workout regimen, especially if I want to get myself in shape to be able to run another marathon and get a new pr anytime soon.
Monday, February 8, 2010
With that being said, I think I found something that I REALLY want but want to do some research before going out and dropping the money on it. What is it? The Adidas miCoach, it is a new workout tracker thingy somewhat similar to Garmin, but not NEARLY as expensive and without some of the fancy bells and whistles. While at the Adidas store I kept looking at it like a 5 year old looking at the window of a candy store, and since getting home and reading a review about some of what it does, I think I'm sold...now it's just trying to sell the wife on it!
Here's some of the parts of the review I REALLY liked...feel free to share your opinions with me.
The $140 miCoach Pacer combines a pedometer, heart rate monitor, calorie counter, and real-time coaching into a device that easily connects to your iPod (or another audio player). Equally important are the online coaching tools that you sync the device with to keep track of your workouts and advance you along a fitness regime that can range from learning to run to improving your marathon time.So this part is my FAVORITE part, it has a coach that will bring you on a training regimen, Boston here I come...or just a 3:30 which is my next goal!
There are two options available via a switch at the top of the Pacer: Free mode, where the device will simply gather data; and miCoach mode, in which the virtual coach will supply audible feedback through the headphones. Another 'fast-forward' button on the top can be used to select different workouts in the miCoach mode, such as a recovery run or intervals speed training.So this adds to the last part, when I don't want to be told what to do and just want to run and do what comes naturally, I can! I can tell the thing to shut up and just let myself run and it will still record everything for me. And lastly...
After the run, the Pacer connects via USB to a Mac or PC and uploads your data (you'll need to plug it in before your first run and install a small software program to enable synchronization, as well as register with the miCoach Web site). The Web interface coupled with these devices is often where they trip over their laces, but not in this instance. The miCoach site is easy to navigate, and includes just about everything you need in order to track and improve your running. The dashboard shows your latest workout time, calories burned, distance, pace, heart rate, and stride rate along with a preview of the next workout and overall achievements (such as mileage) to date.
All this for $140, I hope Pacers starts to carry it soon...Feel free to send me reviews, to read where I got my information from, go here
Sunday, February 7, 2010
Do you run on packed snow and ice? Are you tired of slipping and falling? The Screw Shoe is one solution to the problem! By inserting some screws into the bottom of your shoes you will be able to run in the worst conditions. The process is quick, easy and costs next to nothing:-)
I did not invent this concept—it is something that has been passed around from runner to runner. My goal is just to show you how easy it is to make your own Screw Shoes.
Sheet metal screws are awesome because the head on them has a lip that really grips well on ice. This is important because the screws are inserted from the outside into the bottom of the shoe and it is the head of the screw that provides the traction—not the point! 1/2" long screws work fine in most shoes because they do not go through the shoe yet they are long enough that they don’t come out too easily. 3/8" screws might be a little safer in the fronts of some shoes. If you have a very thin shoe, or you are just paranoid about how thin the front of your shoe looks, then you can use 1/4" long screws. Be sure to buy a lot of them however because they come out rather easily. No matter what, do not use the screw pictured on the right!!!
A screwdriver will work but the “fun factor” disappears after about two screws. Further, using a screwdriver to start a screw into rubber may have you using your entire four-letter-word vocabulary!!! A ratchet screwdriver with a 1/4" socket will at least ease the task of starting the screws.
A cordless drill with a magnetic tip and a 1/4" socket can do a shoe in less than a minute and makes the project almost fun! A neat trick here is that most magnetic tips are 1/4" so you won’t even need to track down the 1/4" socket. This setup is so slick it may be worth a trip to the neighbors to borrow theirs if you don’t have one. Or, since most shoe screwing is done in the winter, this could be the perfect x-mas gift for that special crazy runner!
However you go about it, do not over tighten the screws! Stop screwing when the head of the screw touches the rubber so it will stay in longer. I have also heard the claim that pre-drilling a small pilot hole for the screw will help it stay in longer. I tested this theory by pre-drilling one shoe and not the other. Both sets of screws seemed to stay in equally well and the occasional screw that did come out did so randomly from either shoe so I really don’t think this step is worth the extra effort. Now one could argue that pre-drilling would make starting the screws with a screwdriver easier but I would question why anyone who has access to a drill would not simply use it to insert the screws!?
Pretty much anything goes unless you have “air” or “gel” shoes in which case you will need to be more selective when placing the screws. I have 18 screws in each shoe just because someone else had 17. They had 17 just because someone else had 16, etc. The shoe on the right is my wife Yvonne’s. She has 19—we runners are a competitive lot! As you can see she placed the screws on the treads because placing screws in-between them would be pointless. If you look closely you can see the lip on the screw that was referred to above.
For me the screws in the heel are more important than the ones in the front because I hate falling on my butt when coming down a hill. On really nasty days the Incline Club has been known to bring a box full of screws and a cordless drill to the club runs. The assembly line looks something like this:
That is all there is to the Screw Shoe! I use them mostly in the spring when the warmer days melt the snow and then the water turns to ice during the colder nights. This seems to happen a lot on trails that get a lot of use like the Barr Trail on Pikes Peak. Others use them all winter long on ice covered roads.
Oh, speaking of roads, I usually have to run a mile or so on the roads to get to/from the trails. Other than a hearing a “click, click, click” Screw Shoes work just fine on roads. Yes, it does wear the screw heads out a little faster but again, the screws are cheap:-)
Once winter is over you will not need to buy new shoes because you can just remove the screws. Unless of course you put a bunch of miles on your Screw Shoes—they wear out just like all running shoes!
Happy screwing and running:-)
If I left out something or something is not clear please let me know!
Saturday, February 6, 2010
"Two layer brushed fabric combines enhanced thermal protection and moisture transport. Compression fit for bolstered muscle support and increased circulation resulting in higher efficiency output and increased stamina."In other words, it keeps you pretty warm!
"Anti-Odor Technology prevents the growth of odor causing microbes."And doesn't smell!
Here are some more reviews of the Under Armour cold gear
For more on winter running, here's a link from the February Runners World magazine
Friday, February 5, 2010
The first is for the Mizuno Wave Rider 13, it's similar to the 12 when it comes to the sole of the shoe but they tweaked the top of the shoe.
The second one is a brand new shoe, haven't heard much about it yet but I'm probably going to do some research and get some opinions on it. It's the Brooks Launch, it looks like a great new shoe but the last time I wore a Brooks shoe I had some issues.
Regardless of which I pick I know soon I'll be trudging down to Pacers to get my new pair within the next month or two!
Weather: Weather was nice and clear, great morning for a run
Time: 5:30 AM
Terrain: Flat but there's a pretty decent hill half way through and it ends on a major downhill
Comments: I went at a pretty comfortable pace, I have not been out as consistently lately as I would like, and I think my conditioning is starting to reflect that. One highlight of the run is that early on I had a guy running in front of me that I caught up to and ran with for a few minutes. I got a chance to plug the Pacers AM runs since he seemed talkative. Maybe this will increase the Pacers runners a little bit!
Well with the pending snowstorm forecast, who knows when I'll get my next run in!
2010 Miles: 27.35
Thursday, February 4, 2010
Weather: Nice and clear gorgeous morning
Time: 6:00 AM
Terrain: It was a really flat route, the rocky steps were a bit of a test and there was another large hill when switching from the road to the trail.
Comments: I war running alone, and running in Philadelphia is TOTALLY different then DC. They didn't have nearly as many runners out by 6 AM! When I was leaving the hotel I was asking for clarification on which way to go and the woman at the front desk just looked at me and said "you know it's 15 degrees out right" and at that I went running outside in shorts, gloves, and my nice warm Pacers running hat (thank you Pentagon City AM Fun Runners!).
I also ran last Monday, doing a 4 mile loop in the rain, while I had a good run, it was NOT FUN. My mile total at the moment for 2010 is...22.25!