Saturday, June 01, 2013

Picture Post #1

My plan with this blog is to share some of the places that I have been on my running adventures.
Monthly my goal is to post pictures of where my feet have taken me.  I will post weekly past photos until I am current.  Until then enjoy and let the pictures inspire you to get out there and seek your own running adventure!

Fun Run

One day recently my wife asked me while I was heading out the door for a run, "Why don't you just run for fun?"  Taking offense to this I quickly rebutted her statement.  My local running club has weekly fun runs in the summer.  I try to attend as many of these as possible, because well, they are fun!  Every week is a theme, last week was hamburgers, next week is hot dogs!  Plus every fun run has free beer.  Yes, free beer makes any run fun.  These runs I usually run at 90% effort or more.  So maybe my wife was correct.  That got me thinking about past runs that were fun.  I remember one time I ran with Miller 64 in my hydration bottle, that sure made for a fun run.  Lately I have been running from my house to Miller Park to watch some baseball and run home.  I never stay long in fact I usually leave before the game starts.  It is great to run somewhere, people watch, use the restroom and refill my bottles and go.  I can remember a run that my running buddy and I stopped for margaritas mid run slammed them and got up from our patio table and continued running.  Yes we payed our tab, but still got many WTF looks from others on the patio.  There is a burger stand less than a mile from my house.  Many times I have sprinted there and back for ice cream or burgers.  I confess that I run there so I can feel the added calories are deserved.  So the run is fun when I am running home with a bag of burgers like I stole them.  I am very goal driven in my running but there are times I can still just have fun.  Needing to do speed work and hit my marks can be fun too.   However,

I think I need to add more quirky destinations and activities to my running...till next run!

Friday, May 31, 2013

The May that was

I racked up 131.84 miles this month.  I felt good taking up my mileage to 35+ a week.  Some of those miles are walking or hiking miles as cross training.  This was the last week of Base Phase for The North Face 50.  I have 7 miles of speed work tomorrow to close out this phase.  Sitting down to think I cannot remember any one run that was fantastic.  The best workout of the month came on Mothers Day when the family went hiking 3.1 miles at Devils Lake.  I had a few speed work sessions that were hard, but I know will pay off.  Throw in some recovery runs, brewers runs, fun runs, and you've got a great month of running...till next run!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Heat Acclimatization

It's getting hot in here......

Hot running man
   With the change of seasons comes better running weather, bugs, and HEAT!  For those that live in a place season are defined we all need to get use to the heat.  It is like our bodies forget what it is like workout in 80 degrees.  I am getting ready for a 5K in the middle of June.  Around here the winter has been hard and spring has been cool.  There have been a few warm and muggy days, but they were few and far between.  I am worried that when I get to my race it will be 70 in the morning and muggy as heck.  There is always that first run of the year when it become unexpectedly warm and increasingly difficult to complete.
Running man that is hot
     In the course of the summer I train in anything but lightening,  I am scared of storms.  Heavy rain is no issue, its the voltage I am afraid of.  I remember runs last year when the heat index was over 100.  I went slow and took water with, nice ice cold water.  I would suggest when going out in the heat to take some type of fluid with you.  Find what works for your body and stick with it.  Some days I like to use Vitamin water zero, other days water or Gatorade. There are many types of hydration systems out there to carry your fluid, bottles, belts, and backpacks.  I prefer to run with handheld bottles best.  I used to run with a fuel belt but don't use it much anymore.  My wife who took up running uses that now.  Stay safe and keep running!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Nike Dart 7

     As a runner I have mass amounts of gear.  Shirts, shorts, socks, and hats.  I think I have more running stuff than regular clothes, just ask my wife.  How many race shirts do you need to have to be considered a serious runner?  Every event you go to gives away a shirt.  And since losing weight some of the shirts don't fit.  But how can I part with the shirt from my first 5K?  I also have iPod belts and hydration systems that I don't even use.  Some of the shirts I own hurt too much in warm weather, read chaffing nipples, I never wear them.  Even though I have all this stuff I still want more.

Asics 2150
Brooks Vapor 10
   When I first started running I ran in the Nike Dart 7 and use Nike dri-fit shorts.  I had no idea what I was doing and thankfully didn't get hurt.  After a year of running I got fitted for shoes.  This is something I would recommend to all runners.  I will go into detail about this process in a future blog.  From that point on I was an Asics fan.  I ran almost 500 miles in the 2150.  That fall I was selected as a wear tester for this company I never heard of called Brooks.  They sent me a pair of Vapor 10's to try and give feedback on.  Needless to say,  I became a fan of Brooks.  I even bought two more pairs of this shoe because it fit my foot so well.

Asics DS Trainer 18
Asics Gel Tri Noosa 7
 This year I am running in Asics DS Trainer 18, Asics Gel Tri Noosa 7, Saucony Virrata, and Altra Instinct for walking.  I even use my Vapor 10's for some trail miles.
  With my quest to run 50 miles I question if I need any more gear for 2013.  Do I need a head lamp?  Another pair of trail shoes that have zero miles on them?  What about a hydration backpack, I am going to be running a lot of miles?  My kids just bought me running socks for my birthday so I am set with that.
     How many race shirts do you need to have to be considered a serious runner?  None, you have to just get out there and move your feet to better yourself.

A pair, or more, of shoes helps, but some would argue you don't need any.
Nike Reax - returned after 15 miles
Saucony Virrata

Altra Instinct

Brooks GTS 12 - returned after 30 miles

Monday, May 27, 2013

You scream I scream...

...we all scream for ICE CREAM!  I am a foodie with a running problem.  Or is that I runner with a food problem.  I love food.  All kinds, but I especially love sweets.  If there are cookies around watch your fingers.  On runs I have actually smelled doughnuts and wondered where the scent was coming from.  It is a good thing I don't carry cash on my runs.  My wife is an excellent baker, this doesn't help things much.  Every weekend the house is filled with essence of baked goods, scones, cookies, muffins.... I have no idea why I am not 300 pounds.  It makes running 7 miles easier knowing there is a reward when I get back.  Have you ever perseverated over a doughnut for 70 minutes?
     Yesterday I ran 7 miles and about four hours later I wanted Ice cream with my dinner.  Not wanting to drive 1.5 miles, what better way than to lace em up and run.  So I ran an additional 1.5 miles just for Ice Cream.  I think I have a problem here.  I don't know if it is a food issue or a running one.
    My diet consists of little meat and lots of vegetables and grains.  Meat is still consumed, just small in quantities.  The older I get the more vegetables I like.  Ever since I started running every year I try adding a new fruit or vegetable.  The first year it was broccoli, next was brussel sprouts,  and last year it was watermelon.  I need to eat more fruit in my diet.  Coworkers have made mention to the amount of veggies I eat.  Most of my diet is organic.  Eating organic helps my body to bounce back and heal after long workouts.
     With the holidays and summer bbq's coming up there is plenty of food to be had.  Some days I have NO self control.  I just can't stop eating, it is all soooooooo good.  Did I mention that I love fried foods too.   French Fries and Deep Fried Cheese Curds are my kryptonite.  Cheeseburgers are also good too.  All this talk of food makes me want to go run, or eat.  I think I have found a solution to my issue.  The next time I hear the ice cream truck in the neighborhood I am going to lace up and grab a few dollars then run out the door, like old times when I was 8 years old.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Running The Sahara

     Tonight I sat down and watched "Running The Sahara" I have seen the film before and was inspired the first time.  I wanted my wife to see it to get her opinion and encourage her.  These guys are amazing, I cannot believe what they overcome to reach their goals.

  If you have not seen the movie it is about three guys Ray Zahab, Kevin Lin, and Charlie Engle.  Together they team up with a crew to run over 4300 miles across Africa and the Sahara desert.  Along the way they encounter blisters and pain as well as setbacks and doubt.  There are many times I have doubt with my running schedule, I don't need to run half way across Africa to experience that.  It helps to know they go through the same feelings I do as a runner.
     After watching this movie I am motivated to run my own expedition someday.  Nothing as intense as the Sahara, but I have always wanted to hike or run the river to river trail in Illinois.  Or maybe hike/run the entire Ice Age trail in Wisconsin.  Dare to dream.  What did you once think impossible that you can make possible?  This year I am determined to complete my first 50 mile event!