Monday, May 29, 2006

Backpacking turn Hiking

I promised my wife before we go on our backpacking trip in the Allegheny National Forest, P.A. this memorial day weekend I would mow the lawn, fix the leaking dishwasher, and chop out the tree stomp in our back yard so that she could put the tomato plants in place of the stump. But before I tackled my promises I had to get my "selfish" 57 mile bike ride in with the Cleveland Triathlon Club on Saturday morning.

The bike ride was a challenging and hilly ride. After a great bike ride and getting home before 1:30 in the afternoon I had 2 hours to tackle the chores. My dilemma was that I was pressed for time to get as much done before we were to leave to go on a church picnic and meeting all before 3:30 pm. I began chopping at the stump in bright sun and 80+ degrees for about an hour at which point I had to take a break from dripping sweat and getting light headed. I then mowed the lawn. That was all I could do for that day.

On Sunday morning at 7:00 am I was up and working on fixing the dishwasher which took me about a half hour to fix. So far no leaks. Then I went back out to whacking the stump for another 2 hours and finally the stump was removed from my life.

We loaded all our backpacking gear in the car and drove to the trail head parking lot 3.5 hours away. The Morrison/Rimrock trail is a 12 mile loop. Our plan was to bring all the gear and backpacks but leave them in the car and hike only with hydrapacks and home made power bars (yum, yum), apples, and other dried fruit. If we made the hike in good time we would get the tent and backpacks out of the car, hike a little into the woods and set up camp.

While out on the trail we enjoyed a variety of flora smells and a beautiful hike along the Morrison Run stream. We had a good hike averaging about 2.5 miles per hour and made it back to the car about 7:40 pm. As we finished we considered do we drive 15 miles to a motel 8 and have a nice shower then head over to Perkins for a warm cooked meal or do we get our gear find a camp site and set up the tent, eat MRE's, and retire with a camp fire watching the stars. The motel won the call.

Monday morning we headed out to hike the 8 mile loop Minister Creek Trail. It was another beautiful day to hike in the woods.

We definitely have to go back to the Allegheny's for some more good hiking/backpacking.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Post Card

Yesterday I got a pleasant phone call from my wife. She wanted to tell me I got a post card in the mail. It was from an old running friend I met back in the late 80's. He wrote to tell me about my half marathon race results. His message was so good that it made my wife chuckle and reminded me of something I'll share later. Anyway I have to quote some of it for you.

First Master, 3rd Overall, Cleveland Half Marathon! You are fast, fast, fast...No doubt because of good training and clean living and a supportive spouse! Congrats to Annie!

You see, "congrats to Annie", not to me, but to her for supporting me during my training and not getting too upset with me for missing family dinners, not changing the washers on dripping faucets, the list goes on, or what gets her the most is when I walk in the house dripping with sweat and having a sweet smell of B.O. So yes, congrats to my lovely wife for putting up with me and my crazy training schedule so that I can have the opportunity to race well.

Got to go my To Do list is getting long. Don't want to ruffle her feathers for slacking off.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Rest & Relaxation!

It feels so good physically and mentally to have a time of rest and relaxation from all hard training and to have 4 weeks of unstructured workouts before I start my Columbus Marathon schedule.

During my down time I will focus on strength training, easy steady swimming, and bricks(bike then run).
This week workouts look like:
Monday - Swim easy 25 minutes.
Tuesday - Swim easy 33 minutes.
Wednesday - Strength 25 minutes, Swim easy 25 minutes, Brick(Bike 16 miles then run 2 miles barefoot)
Thursday - Swim, Run easy 4 to 5 miles
Friday - Strength, Swim,
Saturday - Brick(Bike long then run 3 miles)
Sunday and Monday - Backpacking Morrison Hiking Trail in the Allegheny National Forest, PA.

BRICK defined:
ICK is how your legs feel for the first part of the run but very important to implement in training to help the legs get use to the bike/run "ick" transition. After doing them once or twice a week for some months your legs will not feel the ICK. I love bricks, especially if I do the run barefoot.

Little Note:
Thank you family, friends, and fellow bloggers for the funny, kind words, and very nice compliments on my recent race. I appreciate all your support. Love, PapaLouie

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Cleveland Half Marathon Results

I'll begin with a big thank you to all those friends, and fellow bloggers, who were racing or as a spectator that gave me words of encouragement during the race. Also, during the race I made it a point to thank and wave to all the volunteers, traffic patrollers, and the fans that were clapping and cheering as I went by. I think with all the words of encouragement and a sense of being thankful I was helped to have fun and run a great race.

My mile splits was an indication of the kind of rolling course it was.

Mile 1 5:45
First mile always goes fast because of excitement and adrenalin. And a good down hill helps.

Mile 2 6:26
What goes down must go up!

Mile 3 5:55
Finding my grove!

Mile 4 5:27
Feeling great!

Mile 5 6:05
Mile 6 6:04
Mile 7 5:58
Mile 8 5:51
Found my grove and maintained the pace!

Mile 9 6:15
Mile 10 6:06
Mile 11 6:19
Mile 12 6:08
Focusing to finish well!

Mile 13.1 6:20
Total Time 1:19:17 Average pace 6:02.8
3rd Overall!!!

Before this morning my goal time was to finish around 1:20 to 1:24 but early before the race I thought why not finish in a sub 1:20 time. That was good thinking!

Thank you Liz for the photo. And yes that is a real smile!

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Ready to Rock & Roll

15 hours to race time.
I am ready to race the Cleveland Half Marathon tomorrow morning.
Live runner tracking can be found on the Cleveland Marathon web site. You will be able to see my 10K and finish times live online.
My bib number is 3899
See you tomorrow.

Friday, May 19, 2006

Cleveland Bikes to Work Day!

Have you seen these white bikes around the city?
Today was Bike to Work Day in the Cleveland area. After I spotted one of these bikes downtown and noticed the web site posted on the bike I learned from the web site that a group ride would be departing from my neighborhood Arabica. I met the ride leader 7:10 this morning and since cycling is foreign to lots and lots of people it was just the 2 of us heading into town. Traffic on this wet and drizzly, 41 degree morning was light and we made it downtown at the meeting place of a coffee shop around 8:00am. Free bagels and coffee was provided for the riders that came from all directions surrounding the Cleveland area cities. I hung around, met some people including the president of the Cleveland Bikes Club and continued my ride to work.
Maybe more people might get interested in cycling if the bike (pictured above) didn't look so dismal. Nah, I doubt it.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Timeless Secrets for living well

Good health is a matter of choice.
Only plain, wholesome food should be eaten.
Overeating, intoxicants, and stimulants avoid.
Drink plenty of water...nature's remedy.

Have plenty of fresh air in the bedroom.
Eight to nine hours of sleep every night.
Always breathe deeply in the open air.
Look to the cleanliness of body and mind.
Take regular outdoor exercise.
Heed sanitation, sobriety and safety first.

Look upon life with faith, hope and good cheer, and keep the mind and heart free from hatred, jealousy and revenge.

Source: The Stevens-David Company, Chicago, 1918

I think this should still apply for today. Although, I may have a problem finding the "fresh" air.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Entertainment at the track!

Tuesday's track workout was a 6 X 400 meter repeats. The track was hoping with 2 different high school groups visiting to do some kind of workout. Some of the kids were running/walking and some standing around. For the most part they did their thing without getting in the way of my workout.

I started out entertaining them by running my 1.5 mile warm up barefoot! That was good for a lot of smiles and whispering to one another, "hey you see that old man running with no shoes?" After the warm up I shod my feet with my mizuno's and began my 400 repeats. My intentions were to average each lap around 1:20 but make the last 2 faster.
  • The first and second laps I ran well, and I finished them in a time of 1:19, and 1:16.
  • As I started the 3rd lap one of the kids thought he could try and keep up with "the old man" but I finished ahead of him in 1:16.
  • The 4th lap started with another fresh young spring kid who was able to hang with me until the final stretch where I pulled ahead to finish in 1:12.
  • The 5th lap started with another fresh and a bit cocky kid who actually started about 5 steps ahead of me but I maintained an even distance to the finish with a time of 1:09. I told him he made me work on that one.
  • My last lap I had no one to pace with so I took it easy with a time of 1:29. I made sure I didn't want to go too hard and blow something out and set me out of this weekends half marathon race.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

I am Wired to Win!

Saw this amazing movie at the IMAX theater today during my lunch time. It's only 45 minutes long but worth it's entertaining and educational value.

One of the interesting statements made during the show was, "the brain is capable of generating new neurons throughout our lives".

This is another reason why we Tri; to increase and strengthen the synaptic within our brain through training and racing that we can perform beyond what we thought possible because we are all wired to win!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Woo Hoo! It's Taper Week!!

Well, after 11 weeks of solid, consistent training for the Cleveland Half Marathon I am ready for the last week before the race to have an easy week of running.
My 12 week training was a modified program from the Furman Institute of Running & Scientific Training. It basically consists of three quality runs a week which I incorporated into my overall triathlon training program. It works great because on off days of running I can swim and bike.

The Furman program also has a marathon training schedule which I will use to help prepare for the Columbus Marathon on October 15th. This program is not for the weak or faint at heart because of the high demand of quality workouts. I believe this will work best to get me in the best marathon shape while also training and racing for triathlons this summer.

To follow me on race day you can enter my bib number 3899 on the home page link from above.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Annoying Gnats!

How do you avoid
Swarms of gnats
While running or biking in the park?
Those pesky little flies are here to stay
and get in our hair, eyes, ears, nose, and mouth
to frustrate us while out in the park.
Do I have to go back on the trainer and treadmill
to avoid the annoying gnats?
No, I'll keep my dew rag on, glasses on, finger in ear, plug my nose, and keep my mouth shut.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Running Within Quote!

The bottom line on aging and running performance is this: we do not know our limits. The real barrier seems to be the mind, not the body. According to most experts, our true life span is 100-plus years, and whether we make it has much to do with our attitudes, beliefs, and lifestyles. Our bodies are simply waiting for our minds to give them permission to go beyond what most of us think is the finish line.Running Within

This is my favorite quote because of the comment on, "our true life span is 100-plus years".
Based on another book I read I like to tell people that when I turn 100 I will ride 100 miles!

And of course our attitudes, beliefs, and lifestyles has a lot to do with if we get there or not.

I would like to thank TriFrog for recommending this read!

Monday, May 08, 2006

A time to talk.

This past Saturday morning I had a 2 mile walk in the park with my wife. It was the perfect time to talk with no distractions from phone calls, our kids asking for something, or house chores calling our attention. After the walk my daughter was looking for a running partner to do a 3 mile run in the park. Since I was ready to run long I thought it would be good to start with a nice 3 mile warm-up. We went for the run and had the perfect time to be with one another and talk. It was also a good 22:00 warm-up. I think she was setting the pace. I finished the run with her and continued to run for an additional 13 miles down in the Cuyahoga Valley National Recreation Area

Sunday afternoon me and a friend went to ride in the Cuyahoga Valley National Recreation Area for a nice 31 miles. It was the perfect time to talk with a close Christian friend.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Recipe to run with!

Before I dole out the 70 dollars for these vibram 5-fingers I will have to try this cool recipe I found.
I like the idea of using these fancy socks while biking and then when I'm done riding I can kick off my biking shoes, put my bike away, and start a 2 to 3 mile barefoot run. So Cool!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

How time passes!

When I swim in a 50 meter pool I count every 100 meters. Sometimes I count my strokes and add it to the time it takes to swim a length to find my golf score. I am working on bringing down my average of 120 to 100. I only swim freestyle non stop to accomplish an amount of distance. While swimming after a 10 minute warm-up I'll alternate fast and easy laps followed with a 10 minute cool down. When I swim in open water time becomes my focus rather than distance.

When I bike outdoors I ride for distance and figure my average speed. When biking on the trainer I'll spin usually for 1 hour.

When I run a 6 mile tempo track workout for some reason I find it easier to count down the laps rather than the miles.
In my recent 10 mile race during the last 3 miles I used time as the countdown to the finish rather than how many miles left. I thought it was easier to say to myself, "18 minutes left you can hold this pace.... 12 minutes left and feeling strong... 6 minutes and it'll be over". This was my secret when my mind began to wander and the fatigue setting in causing me to slow down. I was happy in using this method to help me focus on the finish.
On my long runs on the road I'll use blocks of miles (3, 6, 9, 12, and 15) to help pass the miles away. On the treadmill I'll use blocks of time (15, 30, 45, 90 minutes) to help pass the time away.

I find it amazing how the mind plays a numbers game to help pass the time while training and racing.

Azalea in bloom!

I always look forward in watching this bush bloom and will enjoy all it's glory for the month of May. Speaking of blooming enjoy reading it's finally may.