Thursday, December 21, 2006

Puppies anyone??

Just had to share this link to some awesome puppies. The mom is from the same breeder that Don's dogs, Buddy and Hot Stuff, came from. I actually played with her when she was a puppy. We had taken a trip up to the breeder's place to see the litter. I'm trying to convince him that he needs a couple of these puppies since he's currently dogless. It's not going as well as I hoped. :-)

Anyway check out these cuties....WARNING: The puppy cam is highly addictive!


Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Kris and Bam's wild kingdom

Bam and I hit Garin park for our Wednesday run. It's been pretty cold...for here anyway, so I waited until afternoon when I thought it looked the sunniest. Oh, and there was some work I had to finish up by noon-thirty, but I try not to let that get in the way too much. :-)

We got through the gate and started up the first hill when Bam snapped to attention. There were a bunch of cows on both sides of the trail, and some crossing the trail. I wasn't sure what would happen if Bam got close to them, but it couldn't be good and I didn't want to find out. I grabbed her collar and we quickly walked past the cows as they gave us the evil eye.

Up, up, up the big hills we went and as we were coming down the hill on the other side, Bam spied two deer. A doe and fawn were gracefully leaping away from us. Bam was amazingly good when I told her to 'leave it', she pranced a bit, but didn't run after them.

We made it almost back to the start of the trail and I thought we could use a bit more running to make up for some of the holiday eating. So we turned around and went back the way we had just come. After one wrong turn...a mere side trip....we were heading back towards the truck. As we came down the next to last hill we saw two coyotes running along. Again, Bam was amazingly well behaved and although she started to chase them several times, she never got too far away. Good girl!

I forgot both my GPS and my Nike+ chip for my Nano, so I'm guessing we did about 5-5.5 miles. A good workout.

Oh, and just in case you're getting the wrong idea, Bam wasn't a complete angel...she managed to roll in cow poop during the 2 seconds I took my eyes off of here. Doh!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

No more!

Tonight was the last bootcamp session. Am I going to miss it?!? Hmmmm....don't think so. Maybe I'll even have a party to celebrate the end of bootcamp. :)

On a completely different note, I'm experiencing winter fever. It's a lot like spring fever, but happens in the winter. Basically, I don't feel like doing any work. I'm ready to begin the holiday break...but I'm a week early. Drat!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Foot weights

Bam and I went for our regularly scheduled Wednesday run regardless of the rain over the past few days and the cloudy, drizzly day. "How bad could it really be?" I thought. Um, yeah, bad.

We arrived at Garin and I noticed an unusual amount of debris on the paved path leading up to the off leash running area, where the hills start. Bad sign. A puddle right before the gate....another bad sign. I let Bam off leash and start up the first little baby hill. My feet are feeling strangely heavy. I look down. CAKED in mud! Did I let a little mud stop way. It would just add a little more resistance, like having ankle weights.

Okay, it was pretty miserable. I had to keep shaking my feet to get the caked on mud off, and it was pretty slippery in some spots, so I had to slow down quite a bit going down hill. And I know it's hard to believe, but it's a lot more difficult to run with a pound of mud on each foot.

Also, there were cows on the path near the exit and I didn't like the way they were staring at us, so we had to make a detour on the way out. Definitely want to give those cows a wide berth. :-)

Surprisingly Bam came out of the park wet but pretty much mud free. And of course the run was no big deal for her. My shoes, on the other hand are quite a bit worse for wear.

On a positive note, I tried a suggestion made by a coworker for my Nike Plus/Nano combination. I put the sensor inside a shoe wallet instead of underneath my shoe laces and it worked like a charm! Who needs those special Nike shoes?!?! Not me!

On another positive note.....LAST DAY OF BOOTCAMP TOMORROW!! Woo Hoo!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Just not diggin' it

Well, this is the last week of bootcamp. Only 2 more sessions....not that I'm counting. Okay, I AM counting. It's just not as fun as I thought it was going to be. Yes, working out CAN be fun, but this is not it for me.

Maybe it's the season....there seems to be a lot to do and a lot less time to do it in. Maybe it's because the workout isn't as varied as I thought it was going to be. We do a lot of similar activities. A lot of jumping...jumping squats, high knees, jumping jacks, jumping stars, jump jump jump! Maybe it's too soon after Nike, and I didn't give myself enough time off (Haahahahahahaha!). Okay, I just don't know what it is but I'm really not excited about going. I am excited that it's almost over. :)

So, there's one week of down time between the end of bootcamp and the Christmas break. I'll probably just hit the gym next week. Take the week of Christmas off. Then after the first of the year, there's a cardio kickboxing class at the community center. That's only once/week, so maybe I won't burn out on it too soon.

I've been running the big Garin hill on Wednesday's. Since I work at home on Wednesdays I can skip out at lunch with Bam and do a quick run up the hill. Or a slow run up the hill, in my case. :) I haven't gained any weight since Nike, and I don't want to so I just got to keep on moving. Or I could stop eating. Those are the choices....guess which one I'm going to pick.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Wish me speed!

Okay, I need all of you to send me speedy thoughts.

Tomorrow is my 'colleague day.' My company has this policy where you can pick an activity, say wine tasting, and if you can get at least 10 of your coworkers to agree to join you the company will allow a paid day off and give $50/person for the activity. You're allowed one paid colleague day/year. KUHL, no???

So my day is tomorrow and we are going Indoor Karting!

There are 30 people signed up, so we've been divided into 3 groups. One ultra-competitive and 2 less competitive. Anyone want to guess which group I'm in?? Anyone?? Anyone?? Bueller?? Okay, I'll tell you.....the ULTRA COMPETITIVE group. I can see that you're shocked beyond words.

But here's the catch, I'm the only woman and probably the lightest one. So although in theory my kart should have more speed, it will also tend to skid more. And the course we are probably going to be on is very curvy. So, more skidding. I think I'm doomed, but I am going to give it my all. And if I have to I'll bump some folks out of the way. ;-)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


This week I started a new exercise experience. Boot camp!

I am using this as an alternative to personal training because 'our' trainer, Mike, at Bally's has gotten pretty expensive. Although Jeff is still working out with him and may continue to do so, I just can't see paying double. Boot camp is a 'smaller' class size and supposed to be challenging. My experience so far is that I like the variety and it is challenging, but no where near as challenging as a personal trainer. Or at least not as challenging as our personal trainer. It may sound gross, but at times when I've worked with Mike I've actually thought I was going to throw up. Okay, okay, I hear you saying "That's a bit of an extreme workout." And it might be over the line, but just slightly. What else am I paying him for if not to push me way more than I'd push myself?? I mean I've never worked out enough on my own to where I want to throw up....well except maybe with running. I've definitely wanted to throw up at times. Blah, enough about throwing up!

Anyway....boot camp. It's a good workout, but not exceptional. Also, I could probably do a lot of the same exercises on my own, or at the gym. But it's always good to learn new stuff and it is making me get out there in an attempt to stay in shape. Will I do another session? I don't know. So many activities, limited time. I still want to try Krav Magra lessons, but may have to wait until after the holidays to take full advantage of the free week. I'm all about the free samples.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Round out the weekend

Tina and I rounded out our weekend with another 10k run. We ran the Run Wild race to benefit the Cal Academy. We were hoping there would be lots of costumes to look at, but there just weren't that many. Our costume idea, which I can't reveal as we may use it next year, would have taken first prize for sure. :)

It wasn't a great run, but we did manage to finish before the rain started coming down. By one o'clock Jeff and I were home napping with the Bams! Rainy weather is perfect for napping, I think. Especially with a dog to warm your toes.

A good long weekend, but never long enough.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Can you trot, turkey?

No rest for the wicked, or so they say. Tina and I were up and at the Silicon Valley 10k Turkey Trot early this morning. When Tina came to pick me up, Bam got soooo excited and really wanted to go with us, but I made her stay home. When we got to the run there were dogs everywhere! But, it was really easier to run without worrying about where she was going or what she was doing.

Anyway, it was a really disorganized race, maybe because it's only their second year running it. It was hard to find stuff, like chip pick up and sweats check. Then the start was 'self-seed', which meant that people really had no idea where they should be! We ended up in a mash of people that included walkers, runners and people with strollers. Sheesh! It didn't thin out to quickly either.

Oh, they were also very disorganized with t-shirt distribution. We couldn't pick up shirts before the race and by the time we finished running they only had XL and XXL and XXXL. Yeah, you know you need a lot of those big sizes because runners tend to be on the large size. Sheesh. Okay, maybe a little bitterness there. At least the shirts weren't very attractive, so I don't feel bad about using it as a night shirt.

We finished the 6.2 miles in about 1:06. My legs were dead tired from the double workout yesterday, so not too bad.

Late afternoon we headed to Don and Mary's place for the Orphan dinner. Okay, it's not really for orphans, but for their friends who aren't going anywhere else for the holiday. Good food, good company, a good time. And guilt free dessert, because hey, we ran already!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Spin spin spin

Against my better judgment I crashed the spin class Tina goes to tonight. It was fun and the instructor is really nice and funny. He also teaches at Bally's on Tuesday and Thursday. If I could ever drag my butt out of bed at 5:00, I'd try his class there. But it was a pretty tough class! Maybe I had issues because the personal trainer tried to kill me this morning already. So I was a little wiped before I even got to the class. What's really cool is he does the class at the Newark community center, but it's in a bus that has been converted to a spin studio. He has fans, a sound system and even disco lights. Very fun. But like I said....also challenging.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Take a Hike

Well, I see it's nearing a month since I last posted. We were on vacation for two weeks. Then trying to get back into the swing of things last week was pure hell. I know, excuses, excuses. I'll get some pics posted up of the trip, but probably not until this weekend.

Anyhoo..Tina, Matt, Bam, Teva, Hobie and I took off for Mission Peak this morning. It was a beautiful sunny day, not too hot, not too cold. Just right. We started off from Ohlone college. I had never been to the peak that way, I've only been up the Milpitas side. I think Milpitas is a little steeper, maybe shorter. It was a good hike tho for people and dogs. Bam was lagging a little by the time we got to the top, but quickly regained her energy for the trip down. She even had enough energy to go 'hunting' for ground squirrels when I let her off leash. She lost her off-leash privledges tho when she went up to a guy with two little kids and started begging for food from them. Silly dog, they were eating oranges!

Doh! I almost forgot the worst part of the whole hike! We made it all the way to the top and did we get to sit and relax and enjoy the view?!?! Hell no! There were nasty, gigantic, swarming gnats. They were all over us, all over the dogs, and when I started getting bit, I was ready to head out! So our reward for making it to the top was to almost immediately turn around and go back down. Bummer.

Total mileage: About 6.75 miles in 3 plus hours. A good hike. The dogs were mostly well behaved and so were the people. :)

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Not as easy as it looks

Go Team! The East Bay Rocks, as you can see from our shirts! :-) The little cutie in front with the tan skirt is Vanessa, one of our honorees.

Yep, I'm looking pretty tired. And we haven't even started running yet.

Okay, I've perked up a bit. But this picture is VERRRRY early in the run. I haven't even sweat through my hat yet.

Still smiling?!?!? What is wrong with this girl?? Oh, yeah, she's a camera hound.

The girls that started together stayed together! Finally crossing the finish line!

We sooooo ran like girls! We rock! And we earned those smiles and the Tiffany bling and the Nike Finisher shirts!!!

One side note: while all the bling is icing on the cake, there is an incredible amount of satisfaction derived from seeing all the folks out on the course with "Honoree" shirts. They are soooo thankful to all the runners and walkers for supporting LLS. One family was along side the course and the little girl, maybe 3 or 4 years old, had an "Honoree" t-shirt that looked more like a dress. The mom said "1-1/2 years in remission! And it's thanks to all of you! Thank you!"

THAT is why we run.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Nike stats

A few numbers from the 2006 Nike Women's Marathon:

3:10 the winner's finishing time

15000: the approx. number of women entered

150: the approx. number of men entered (although I think the paper got this wrong, because the results show about 700 men entered)

7800: the approx. number of finishers for the 1/2 marathon

4000: the approx. number of finishers for the full marathon

And most importantly:

$16 Million: the amount of money raised for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Ran like girls

That's right ladies and gentlemen, Tina and I finished all 26.2 miles of the 2006 Nike Women's Marathon. It wasn't fast or pretty or easy, but we did it. And we have the bling to prove it. :-)

It was quite a bit warmer than last year, which isn't really a good thing where running is concerned. The run itself is draining enough without adding sun and heat on top of it.

We started our run at about 7:08. Yes, it took us about 8 minutes to reach the start line once the 'official' time started. The guys saw us into the corral and then took off for some breakfast. Lucky lucky.

The first few miles were pretty crowded, lots of weaving around people, slowing down, speeding up, etc. By the time we hit the big hill at mile 6, it had thinned out a little. We ran right up that hill. Hill, what hill? We were slightly ahead of pace for the first half where we spotted some porta-potties that weren't busy and made a pit stop. Still doing pretty well. Then we hit the 2 miles worth of gradual uphill that winds through Golden Gate Park. That sapped our energy a bit.

We saw the guys again at mile 15 and I grabbed some M&Ms. Little known fact: M&Ms may not melt in your hand, but they will melt in a sweaty pocket. The candy coating was soon trickling down my leg. Ewwwww.

Somehow the guys made it out to mile 19.5, just as we were starting around the lake. We begged for rides home to no avail. Our pleas fell on deaf ears. I felt pretty good for the next couple of miles, but then I lost it. I wanted to cry and just stop running. I think they call it ....... THE WALL. I tried some Gu, I tried Sport Beans, I tried anything I could think of. In the end I had to keep telling myself to just get it over with. Soon it would be over, soon it would be over. We spotted the guys again just after the lake and they could tell we weren't doing so great, but tried to encourage us.

In the end, we just did the damn thing, as Coach Al would say.

How did my hip hold up you ask? Well, a bad sign was that it started aching around mile 2. Yes, mile 2. It was tolerable if I kept moving, but stopping to grab the water at the aid stations it really ached. Oh, and the downhills were torture. Just bad. Did I mention that I have a sinus infection too? Yeah, not the best run, but WE DID IT!

26.2 miles in 5:40. 2 minutes faster than last year, even with the health issues. :-)

Monday, October 16, 2006

Easy street

As I've mentioned many times, we're in the home stretch to the big day. So we're just supposed to do easy runs this week. Good thing what with being sick and gimpy.

Tina and I headed out to Shinn pond to squeeze in a short easy run before dark. Of course we brought the pooches, Teva and Bam, to stretch their legs too. Right away Teva started limping and we thought it would be the shortest run on record, but she seemed to be okay so we trudged on. My hip felt good through the run, the dogs mostly behaved, I wasn't snorting up too much gunk. Bam's stubborn streak was in full bloom, but other than that she was pretty good. Teva met the dog park gang and was a little intimidated, but then seemed to get along okay.

Lots of dog related stopping and starting on the run: 3.12 miles in about 40 min.

The trouble hit me later in the evening. I went to get out of the truck and noticed how achy my hip was. From a short easy run. I don't know what's going to happen on Sunday. I think I need to pound some NSAIDs and apply some heat. Hopefully I won't have to crawl across the finish line. But I will if I have to. Believe it. I'm getting that little blue box. :-)

Nike ruminations

We're now in the single digits for the Nike countdown. Points to ponder:

1) Still sick, dammit. Got 6 more days to keep pushing the Vit C.

2) To run with music or without music? I think Tina's gonna' kick ass and I'll end up running alone, so I'm leaning towards music.

3) Will my hip recover in the next 6 days, or will I be "limp-along" for the marathon?

4) I will cross the stupid finish line, but will I make my 5:30 target? Or since I'm under the weather and wounded should I forget about the time?

5) Why am I doing this again?

Okay, enough! Got to start the positive talk and get pumped up. It's hard when I feel crappy tho. Send all good vibes to Kris prior to Oct 22. Thx.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Schlepping the bag

Definition of schlep (courtesy of Urban :
1) A long and tiresome walk.
2) To carry, bring or otherwise transmit something which is difficult to move.

I think both definitions fit what I did today. Okay, so I don't carry the golf bag so much as push it around. But hey, it's up and down hills, so it's still a challenge. And the walk is definitely long if not tiresome. I wanted to wear my Garmin to see just how long, but the stupid battery is dead. I guess it's good to find that out today rather than next Sunday for Nike.

I caddied for JD today at Eagle Ridge, which is a challenging walk. We cheated a bit by hitching a ride up some of the bigger hills with his playing partners. It was a beautiful sunny day for the most part. Cooled off a bit as the sun was setting and about that time I was ready to get out of there. JD was struggling a bit with the clubs but did pull off an awesome bomb of a drive to win the longest drive competition and a spectacular tee shot on a par 3 led to a closest to the pin win also. Ahhh, pay the caddy. :-)

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Last run/Kickin' ass

Today was our last coach's run. It was at the San Leandro marina and was supposed to be mapped out at 4-6 miles. We were also going to pick up our info packets for the marathon and get the spiel from Coach and Mama Lisa about what to do/not do/expect at the event.

Tina and I are both sick but we toughed it out and showed up for our last TNT organized run. We arrived sporting our new sweatshirts from our Cafe Press store to do some shameless self-promotion. Great idea! Several people mentioned how nice they were and that they would order stuff. We'll see if it pans out.

So I think Coach is trying to instill in us that it's too late to worry about training now and that anything we do or don't do in this last week is going to have no impact on our marathon. The course he mapped out was only a 5k (3.1 miles) instead of the scheduled 4-6.

Tina must have eaten her wheaties because she set a blistering pace. It was all I could do to keep up, while snorting and spitting my entire sinus cavity off the side of the road. (Eww, that may be a bit graphic. Maybe I should rate this post a pg-13.) Just over a 5k in barely over 30 minutes. According to T, a 9.4 min/mile pace.

We didn't end up hanging out for the talks since we had both heard them before but instead headed home for a hot shower and a nap.

I also had a women's self defense course today. It was pretty cool. They taught a method called Krav Maga. It's a fighting style used by the Israeli defense force. We learned some basic moves for blocking and some basic kicks and punches. They offer a free one week trial of the courses and I think I'll check it out after the marathon is behind me. It was a great workout and I'm sure it wasn't as intense as the actual classes. Worth checking out for a free week, I think. When I left I felt like I could kick some serious ass. However as soon as I got home Jeff injected some reality into that theory. I mean the moves are easy enough to do against another woman (in class) who's not really threatening you, but against a strong guy who's also not really threatening you let alone a strong guy who is....hmmmm, more classes are definitely in order.

Friday, October 13, 2006


Just in time for the marathon......sick again, or still sick. really pisses me off. Couldn't wait until after the run?!?!?!

So I haven't done anything since Tuesday. I'm going to bomb the marathon. I've got a bad feeling......

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Run deer run!

The gang (Tina, Bam, Teva and I) hit Garin park last night to conquer the big hill again. As we drove in we noticed the sign said 'Park closes/Gates locked 7PM.' Uh oh, it's going to be a close call if we make it out in time. Park and jump out, get the dogs hooked up and we're off.

We made it about 2/3 of the way to the top of the hill when the dogs spied some deer and started after them. Luckily they didn't chase them all the way across the fields and listened fairly well as we were both yelling at them. And even luckier, there were no injuries and we didn't have to carry dogs out of the park.

We saw the sun sink below the hills and decided we should turn around at the top of the hill. At least that way we'd have more light and it should be an easier trip back so we can make better time. We got to the car about 10 after 7 and luckily we weren't locked in. Must be a bit of a grace period. It was DARK tho and I can see why they close the park at 7.

3.26 miles in about 44 minutes. Lots of hills, remember?

Monday, October 09, 2006

Gym time

Since I did a bunch of cardio yesterday, I just warmed up for 10 minutes then hit the weights. I did a bunch of legs, arms and abs. Kind of an all over workout. Nothing too exciting.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Rockin' and rollin'

As I alluded to yesterday, Tina and I ran the 1/2 marathon today. It sounded like it would be fun. 20 bands along the route and lots of cheer squads, etc. Another inaugural 1/2 under our belts. The guys and a couple of pups along to watch. Fun right? Well, it turned out to be more of an adventure than fun.

I guess I did a little too much relaxing yesterday and not enough planning because I barely remembered my race chip and forgot my bib number. We didn't really have time to go back and get it, but I wasn't sure I could run with out it. We navigated our way around the traffic and found a parking spot. Once we got to the race area I headed to the 'Solutions' booth to find out how to get a new number. Just when I got to the front of the line, the generator that was running the electronics died. Out of gas. Okay, they're sending a guy over to fill it up and restart it. See, they needed the power to initialize my new chip. Each chip is evidently assigned to a bib number and since I needed a new bib, I also needed a new chip. Okay, so we're waiting and waiting. It's now about 15 min to race time. People are getting antsy. Finally the guy shows up with the gas, pours it in and....oh, wait that's not a diesel generator. Great. Generator ruined. They did come up with a work around solution, but it was getting really close to race time. I high tailed it back to where I had left the gang and just made it.

Neither Tina nor I had a great run. I think there's a reason we're only supposed to do 7 miles a week after the 20-miler. The body needs some serious recovery time. It was also a bit warmer than we've gotten used to running in lately. Anyway, we dragged ourselves to the finish line in 2:29. If we had been feeling good I think we could have easily beat the Disney time.

A couple of notes. While it's cool that they had a bunch of bands, you could really only hear them for a couple of minutes at the most, so it wasn't as motivating as I thought. As we were going past, oh mile 5.5 or so, we saw the 12 mile mark on the other side of the road and the elite runners were starting to come in. Man, those guys (and gals) were moving. The guy in first place, a Kenyan, looked like it was no effort at all. Amazing to watch. Turns out he ran the second fastest time on American soil, 1 hour 22 seconds.

The best part of the run was when it was over. :-) We grabbed some chow and headed home for a big long nap. Hooray for naps!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Slow down Saturday

Today would be a run day, 7 miles, but somehow Tina talked me into doing the inaugural Rock n' Roll San Jose 1/2 marathon tomorrow.

So I had a lazy day just doing stuff around the house. I took Bam out to Garin park for a romp, but we only did about 3 miles at a slow crawl. Well, I was slow. She was running back and forth, back and forth. After the run she got a bath and her ears cleaned out. I guess those things cancel out the goodwill I earned for taking her for a romp. All in all a pretty lazy day.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Lazy posting

What did I do today??
See Wednesdays post and pretend that it says Friday instead of Wednesday.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Happy B'Day Mum!

A big shout out to my ma'!

Happy Birthday to you....
Happy Birthday to you....
Happy Birthday dear MOM...
Happy Birthday to you....

....and many more!!!!

(Hey...I don't have to pay royalties on that do I?)

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Hit the gym

Well, since I was a slacker last night (okay, I was sick...still a slacker) I hit the gym this morning at 5:45. I did 3 miles on the treadmill in about 29 minutes then cooled down a couple of minutes and spent my last 6-7 minutes walking with the incline set at 15 (all the way up). I did some walking facing forwards and some facing backwards. Yes, I got some weird looks, but I read it's really good for the hamstrings. And I read it in Shape magazine so it's got to be true.

After getting off the treadmill, I did 40 minutes of weights and abs. No, not 40 minutes of each! Sheesh. :-)

Felt good to get back into the gym and move some iron (as the boys say). Jeff's been working out with our trainer again and amazingly they have been doing some exercises that have really helped his back. Three cheers for the trainer! Go Mike! Go Mike! Go Mike!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Knocked out

I must have picked up the bug that's been going around at work. Running 19+ miles with it in my system probably didn't help either. In any case, now I'm sick. I hate being sick! Jeff says 'better now than in a couple of weeks (for the Nike)' which I guess is true. Still, I hate skipping workouts at this point even tho I tell myself it's better to rest up and get feeling better than to push and prolong the illness. Sigh. I think my body is trying to tell me to rest a bit. You'd think that it would have figured out by now that I don't listen. ha ha ha ha

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Turned around

Tina and I arrived in San Francisco bright and early, well before the start time, for our 20 mile run. Unfortunately we arrived bright and early in the wrong location, so after walking around for a bit and following some other lost folks, we figured out we were supposed to be one block up from our current location. We high tailed it over there, but the 6:45 am group was already gone. So we ended up starting out a little later than expected.

We headed up a big, big hill past the Cliff house then we followed the very small course markings to a trail, where we stopped to stretch. Unfortunately by the time we were done stretching, everyone else had taken off and we didn't see any course markings. Great, which way should we go? Luckily some San Francisco team runners came by and said 'if a turn isn't marked..go straight.' So we did, but then the same runners said they remembered something about a certain trail, so we headed down some stairs and along a different trail. Still no course markings. We came out onto a larger trail and they started heading left when I saw a tiny arrow pointing right. So we all went right and up some more hills. We finally hit a water stop and they told us to run to the stop sign and then turn. Okay, we ran there, but turn which way?? Here there were some course markings, but they were in chalk and today's were supposed to be in flour. The San Francisco runners told me that the chalk markings were from last week's run. Okay, great.

We managed to find our way back onto the trail and headed back down past the Cliff House and back into Golden Gate park. The route into Golden Gate Park was manned with someone who told us 'go out to your mile marker or the museum and turn around.' Okay, they didn't mention that you have to run on a certain side to see the mile markers. So along with many other folks, we were running on the wrong side of the road and only realized it when we saw a water stop across the street and were told to go to the crosswalk and cross. Here we found out that the turn around was for 12 miles. Wait, if we have 12 miles and still have 10 more after that to get down the Great Highway and around the Lake, that's 22 miles! Sheesh, this course was so poorly planned.

Anyway we made it out of the park and started to head out the Great Highway. Out the highway and up towards the lake. We hit the water stop at about 15 miles and were told that they were turning everyone around. Coach didn't want anyone on their feet for more than 4 hours. Guess we're just too slow for a full 20 miler. Well, we would hit at least 19 by the time we made it back to the finish line. So we grabbed some snacks and headed back the way we came.

On the way back we saw coach and he asked how we were doing. "Bad," I said. He wouldn't even give me a ride back to the finish line! :-)

With about 3 miles left to go, my ankle really started to hurt. I'm not sure what's going on, but maybe I need new shoes again. Tina was booking, but came back to drag me to the finish line...again. Thanks T!

Total time and distance: 4 hrs, 19.4 miles.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Sneak preview

Follow the link for a sneak preview of the course Tina and I will be running tomorrow. Oooh, it's 6:00pm I have to go to bed now so I can pick up Tina at the gawd-awful hour of 5:30 tomorrow.

And no, your eyes aren't playing tricks on you....the route as mapped says 21.69 miles. Shoot, we might as well do the whole thing! Ooops....did I say that?!?

Running and Running and Running

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Swim like a fish

We hit the pool for our weekly laps. The number of laps depends greatly upon the number of people in the lane, the cleanliness of the pool and what we've eaten that day.

When we arrived there were two lanes open, with only one person in each. Excellent. We started our laps and soon noticed that we were down to one lane. They took our other lane away and were using it for kiddie lessons! And only 2 kiddies at that. Seriously, they take up way less space than we do. You could take 2 lanes worth of kiddies and fit them into one lane. Ah well, there were only four adults in our lane, so it wasn't horrible.

This one guy, Japanese it turns out, had the smoothest strokes. He barely made a splash at all. After we had been flailing around like usual, Tina asked him for some pointers. Turns out he's an infomercial. He points to his hat and says 'you have to get this DVD.' It's called Total Immersion. Okay, we say we'll check it out. Later on as I'm finishing a couple of laps and taking a quick breather, he gives me two quick pointers.
1. look down at the bottom of the pool.
2. push your head down into the water.

Turns out I was riding too high in the water and creating more drag then necessary. Pushing your head down brings the hips up and makes for a more streamlined swimmer. I tried to push my head down and look down, and it did seem to work. I felt smoother in the water and not so splashy. Cool. We managed 52 laps in about 50 minutes.

2 days of rest and then......then 20-miler! If I survive, I'll blog the experience.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Stricken by injury

Tina and I took off for Garin last night to try and sneak in our run before darkness. We were going to the off leash area so we brought Bam and Teva to keep us company.

We started off from the parking lot and it was pretty comical. The dogs were pretty much dragging us around. With all of Tina's shouting out in surprise, I'm sure people wondered what the heck was going on over there. Hahahahaha!

So we hit the off leash section and settled into the big hill. Ugh, I had forgotten how incredibly long that hill is! Bam and Teva led the way sniffing and marking territory and more sniffing. I caught Bam pawing at a cow pie at a time which I'm sure was just prior to her rolling in it. Luckily she left it alone when I told her to, but it was a close call.

A bit later both dogs took off at a really fast run through the field chasing some birds. It was quite a site!

As we made it up the next big hill, Bam took off after a deer, with Teva following. Teva soon came back, but I had to call and call for Bam. I was sure she was all the way back down the hill and I'd have to go after her. The she comes towards us and I ask Tina "Is she limping??...No....a little, maybe....she's definitely limping." She came hobbling up to us and started whimpering and limping along. I had no idea how we were going to get her out of there. We were at about 1.6 miles and were trying to figure out if it was shorter to go back the way we came, or continue on. Either way is pretty much all downhill. Okay, let's press on.

By now, it's getting fairly dark. Bam is limping along and we're trying to go slow for her. We're starting to wonder which one of us is going to carry her out. Teva's wondering why we're lagging behind. Luckily Bam seems to loosen up a little bit and is trotting along with a pretty normal gait. I put on my headlamp to give us a little more light. I really don't want any more injuries, and the path is pretty bumpy. As we went by some trees, I swore I heard a mountain lion. But then I always think the weird sounds are a mountain lion...particularly when it gets dark.

So, we made it back to the car. 3.5 miles in about 50 minutes. That includes injury time tho and hills!

Bad news is that poor Bam is not wanting to walk today at all. She's holding her back, left leg in the air and not wanting to move. I gave her some ascriptin this morning and will check on her tonight. I think tonight is bed rest for her. Poor girl.

Monday, September 25, 2006


Yep, we earned those medals!

What a happy runner!

Or not....a mean sprint to the finish.....outta' my way!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

A nice Sunday run

We only had to do 8 miles today. Piece of cake.

I was given another chance at choosing the trail, so I opted for one I knew was flat and we hadn't been there, a plus. The minus was that I couldn't find a map of the trails to plot out an exact course. I did find a description which stated that there were over 10 miles of trails, so distance-wise I thought we would be okay. My pick of the day: Shoreline park in Mountain View. Jeff and I have played golf there and I knew there were some decent paths.

As I was getting ready to leave, Bam started getting VERY excited. Especially when she saw the running shoes. Sadly she had to stay home. No dogs allowed at most of Shoreline. That's one strike against it. Jeff said she whined and pouted for quite a while after I left. Poor Bam. Until he fed her that is. Then she seemed to forget all about me. Huh.

Tina picked me up and we headed over the bridge. As we got close to the park we started seeing "Race...this way" signs. Ooooo, I hope it's not too crowded. I didn't know there was going to be a race here today. We wound around the road to a parking area and started off. We kept seeing banners and a couple of water stops for the race, but no people. Finally we passed the start/finish line and the race hadn't even begun yet. Good for us...less people on the trail. It was a fairly nice trail, kind of straight and boring, but at least it was a change of scenery. The last section was shaded and kind of 'woodsy' which was nice. We hit our four miles and headed back. On the way back we saw a bunch of walkers. Guess they finally started the event. As we passed the start line we heard them calling for the 6-minute mile and faster runners. Hmmm, I think we're about to get run down. With a little over a mile to go we were passed by some guys who were seriously cruising. They were running a 5K and man they were RUNNING. Pretty impressive.

The volunteers, mostly a bunch of teenagers, kept cheering us on thinking that we were in the race. Tina finally told some of them 'you don't have to cheer for us, we didn't pay.' Hahahahahaha!

At the end of the run my GPS read: 8.04 miles in about 1:27. Nicely done.

Next Saturday: the DREADED 20 miler. (ominous music plays in the background)

Friday, September 22, 2006

What have I been doing?!?!?

I've been very busy thank you very much. So, I'm going to do one post to update the last week and then maybe I'll get back on track with my posts.

9/19 - Buddy run. Tina and I headed over to Garin since we hadn't been there in a while. Sadly, it's getting dark so early now it's tough to get after work runs in! We did the loop with the smaller hills, which I think is about 3.5 miles. Neither of us had our Garmins, since Tina was sure I'd have mine she didn't bring hers. I couldn't find mine (later found it buried in the dirty laundry) so we guesstimated time at about 40 minutes. Not bad since I'm sure you remember that Garin is a bit hilly. A good run.

9/20 - Jeff couldn't make his workout at the gym this morning with the trainer, so I went in his place. Got a good overall workout. About 2/5 legs, 2/5 arms and 1/5 abs. I didn't feel totally beat afterwards, just like I got a good workout, but man was I sore for a couple of days! I have to get back into the gym on a regular basis and soon. Also did our usual swim of about 40 laps in the evening. It was REALLY crowded at first, only one lane open. Tina spoke to one of the instructors tho and they kicked the little kiddies out of the lane and we took over. Go Tina. :-)

9/21 - Track workout. We did circuits even tho I was still sore from yesterday. We did the whole set although I imagine I was running much slower than usual. 1 warm up lap, 1 lap, 1 circuit-25 squats, 20 crunches, 15 pushups, 25 squats, 1 lap, 1 circuit-10 supermen, 20 crunches, 10 left leg only squats, 10 right leg only squats, repeat the whole sequence (except the warm up lap). We might have mixed up the circuits a little, but we got the just of it. I think it actually helped my muscles loosen up to do some exercise.


We're going to do our long run on Sunday this week. It's an 8-miler and I'm being given a second chance at course plotting. Remember-those little numbers are 'elevation', don't pick the big ones. Hahahahaha.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

We ran thru Disneyland!

We did it! We earned this super cool medal for running the Inaugural Disneyland 1/2 marathon.

I have to say it was the most entertaining and well supported run I've ever done. The course was a bit narrow and crowded, especially through the park, and they told us to show up way too early, but other than complaints.

So our day started with getting up at 3:30 to have a bite to eat and be at the start by 4:30, as directed by the instructions we received in the mail. Yeah, well we really just ended up standing around for 1-1/2 hours until the start at 6:00. Around start time there was evidently some entertainment, but our corral was too far back to see much. At last we heard the count down and 9 minutes later we crossed the start line. We're off!

We ran through Downtown Disney, through California Adventure and through Disneyland itself. Tina and I agreed that next year we need to bring a camera because there were Disney characters all over the place that we wanted to have our picture taken with! If we do it again, we'll be doing it for the entertainment value alone and not for time!

After we left the park, about mile 4, we headed out onto the streets of Anaheim for the most boring part of the run. Granted, the planners tried to liven things up by having marching bands, hula dancers, Mexican dancers, all sorts of stuff along the route. But running down city streets is, I think, inherently boring. Then about mile 9 we hit Angels stadium! We ran around the track and were projected onto the big screen! That was way cool.

About 2-1/2 more miles through city streets and we were back into the park for the home stretch. We hit the finish line at 2:28! YES! I wanted to be under 2:30 and we did it! Three cheers for us! Go Tina and Kristi! :-)

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Expo and California Adventure

We hit the expo as soon as it opened this morning in an effort to get the good stuff before it was sold out. We hit the packet pick up first and got our race numbers and timing chips. Tina and I were then off and running like mad women. I think Matt thought we had lost our minds. It was fun tho! Next stop, pick up our commemorative t-shirt, of course. A pretty cool long sleeve dri-fit type running shirt. Excellent!

A quick stop to look at the shadow boxes for finisher medals and then over to the line for commemorative apparel. The line was moving pretty well, then when we got to the front they stopped it to let the check out line clear out. It was okay tho, because we were able to do some 'window' shopping and see what we wanted to grab. Sadly, one of the items I really wanted was already sold out in small! It was this really nice track jacket. Would have been perfect for warming up and running in cooler weather. Dang! We should have come down on Friday and hit the expo then! Argh!! Okay, I settled for some t-shirts and a fleece. Next we cruised around to see what free stuff we could get. We saw some cool t-shirts for sale, but again they were sold out of anything but XL. Sigh.

Once we had our fill of the expo we grabbed some food and then hit the California Adventure park. Not worth the admission price. We should have stuck with good old Disneyland. CA Adventure is pretty small and there are only a few good rides. Tower of Terror is awesome, and California Screamin' is a great roller coaster. But overall a disappointment. Maybe for the extra $20 it would have been worth it to get the park hopper. Ah, well, we really shouldn't have been on our feet so long as it is, so maybe it's good we didn't go to Disneyland since we probably would have spent more time there.

Finding a restaurant was an adventure in itself. Matt's new GPS kept sending us either back to Disneyland or to places that no longer existed. Eventually we made our way to a spaghetti joint, chowed down and headed back to the hotel. Not an early night like we planned, but in bed by 9:00. It's going to be a short night since we have to be up around 3:30 to head over to the starting area by 4:30. The race doesn't even start until 6! What's the rush??

Friday, September 15, 2006

I'm goin' to Disneyland!

I'm off to Anaheim tonight and Sunday is the Disney 1/2 marathon. The inaugural Disney 1/2. Too cool. I think it will be loads of fun.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Cool, cool, cool

Tina and I went to take a quick spin around Coyote Hills. We wanted to do just a couple or three miles to keep loose for Disney. We took off about 6:45, only to arrive at the park gates just as the ranger was getting ready to lock up. Since the days are shorter now, the park closes at 7:00 instead of 8:00. Argh.

So instead we went over to Don Edwards regional park and the gates there don't close until 8:00, so we did a quick jaunt around two small loop trails. And man, it felt like winter was closer than summer. It was breezy and cool and I wished I had been wearing my running pants instead of my shorts. I did have a long sleeved shirt, thank goodness. It was still too cool for my comfort. I was barely sweating, which for me is saying something.

2.21 miles in 23:45 or so.

The bad shin started a bit of achiness. Go away pain, I'm not giving in. We'll see how it holds up at Disney.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Motion of the ocean/invasion of the sasquatch

Tina and I hit the pool for our weekly laps. Our first indication that it was going to be very busy was the parking lot. We had to park way far away. When we got inside, we could see that there were about 30 women doing the aqua aerobics class. There were only 2 lap lanes open and several people in each lane. What happened to the great nights where we were practically the only ones here?

Taking a look at our choice of the 2 lanes (fast/slow), we opted for slow. Paddle-hands man was in the fast lane and he can get quite testy if he perceives that you get in his way. There were 2 other people in the slow lane, so we'd have to negotiate around them. I started out on my first few laps and noticed something strange. There was an ocean like movement to the water. Okay, maybe more like a lake, but still there was chop. It was coming from the aerobics women! They were making the pool choppy! It was actually difficult to get my head out of the water enough to breathe sometimes. Unbelievable.

We splashed, kicked, and choked our way up to 38 laps when the sasquatch man joined the slow lane. Ewww. Okay, I guess 40 is it for tonight. Well, we have to take it easy anyway for the Disney 1/2. Uh, yeah, that's it.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Warm up

I have told myself to take it easy this week. One reason is to recover from the disaster last Saturday. Also, I want to rest a bit to give myself a chance to have a good run at the Disney 1/2 marathon on Sunday. So, do I listen to myself? No, not really. Sigh.

I started out to do a short run to see how I would feel. I headed out from my house, down Niles Blvd towards Quarry lake, around the big hay field, through the Isherwood staging area, across Alameda Creek and back the same route. I felt pretty good on the way out. On the way back, with about 1 mile left to go I started to feel really tired. What's going on? I should be able to do this run without feeling it at all. Granted it's a bit faster than a 'long' run pace, but still. I know, I know, I'm probably pushing myself too hard. I guess Tina's right...I am an over achiever. It was warm today, so maybe that contributed to my fatigue. Maybe I was dehydrated. Who knows. On a positive note, my shin seems to have given in to my will. It didn't bother me at all tonight. Then again, maybe it's laying low to act up at a most inopportune time. We shall see.

Total time: a little over an hour. Total distance: somewhere just under 6 miles. My GPS zonked out a little over 1/2 way (which was 2.8 miles). When I looked at it as I arrived home it said 11.something miles. Uh, yeah, I don't think so.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Word for today...struggle

Tina and I hit the road bright and early this morning at 6:00. Well, early anyway, but the sun was not yet up so it sure wasn't bright.

We arrived at the San Leandro Marina all set to do our 16-18 mile run. Which for us translates to 18 miles, of course. You know...over achievers. It was cool, but not too cold, and a little breezy. Good running weather. I was a little apprehensive about this run. For some reason I just wasn't feeling great. But we were going to give it our best shot.

The first few miles went by and I just didn't feel like I was getting into a groove. By the time we hit 6 miles, I really felt bad. I was having side stitches and feeling tired already. It was nothing like the 16-miler a couple weeks ago. That one was tough, but doable.

The course was 8 miles out and back. Somewhere on the course we were supposed to make up the extra two miles. Like repeat the last mile, or add a 1 mile loop on the end of the run. Tina and I decided to add a mile on once we reached 8 miles. So we went past the turn around and did one more mile then turned back. For one reason, it's mentally easier to see the finish line and know you can stop instead of having to go past the finish line and do an extra mile. For another reason, most of the 8 miles were on a gravelly trail which was wreaking havoc with our stride not to mention our joints. The extra mile we did was on pavement and we noticed an immediate difference.

I was really struggling by mile 11. I was exhausted and nauseous and felt like I wasn't going to make it. Tina, good run buddy that she is, suggested we do a combination walk/run for the last 6 miles. I was running so slow at that point that I didn't really think it would make a difference time-wise, and it didn't. It did help relieve my nausea and it seemed easier to push through 5-7 minutes of running, realizing that once we made it through those few minutes we could have a one minute walk break. I think Tina was doing much better than I and could have finished much sooner, but she wouldn't leave me behind. I owe her one, since she pretty much dragged me to the finish. We missed a part of the course and ended up doing 'only' 17.1 miles in about 3:40.

I don't know what it was exactly about this run that had me so down, but it was the worst run I can ever remember having. Including the full marathon. Tina thinks it was the gravel that makes it feel like you're running over molasses. That may be part of it. Mama Lisa (one of our coaches) says that everyone will have a bad run once in a while and we shouldn't get too down about it but I was really discouraged. I've come all this way and then I feel like I have a major set back. My eating habits hadn't changed from previous weeks. My activity level was about the same. I had a couple nights of bad sleep, but not too bad. Is my body trying to tell me that this is too much? Or did I just have a bad run, like coach says? All told it was only one more mile than the run two weeks ago, so why was it so bad? Argh. I'm driving myself nuts trying to figure out what went wrong. I need to just put it behind me and move on. Easier said than done. Hopefully I'll have a good run on the 17th at Disney and that will help my mental state. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Quick sprints

I bet you thought I meant the sprints were quick, eh? Nope. Just that we only did a few so track workout was quick tonight. We were taking it easy in preparation for our big 16-18 miler this weekend. So, one warm up lap, then 8 sets of sprints followed by a cool down lap and we were outta' there. Told you it was quick.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Just keep swimming....just keep la la la la

Okay, so maybe I've seen Finding Nemo a few too many times.

It was my theme for the evening tho. I hit the pool right after work and when I arrived there were 3 lap lanes open and only one other person. Cool, a lane to myself. Eventually one more person showed up, and by then there were 4 lap lanes open. The pool was clean, I was in a groove. It was probably due to my new streamlined swimming cap. 60 laps and about 47 minutes later I hopped out of the pool and headed home to walk my Bamber-dog. When I left there was still no one else in my lane and only 4 people (including me) in the pool. Where is everyone? Don't know, but it sure was nice....and clean. Did I mention how clean the pool was? :-)

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Same ol', same ol'

Bam and I did our usual Tuesday night 5 mile route. My GPS was out of whack, so although I didn't measure the actual mileage, it's the same route we've been taking so it has to be close to 5 miles. Time: 53:45. A little aching in the shin, but not too bad. Hopefully it's giving up and realizing that I'm not going to stop running just because it aches.

It's getting dark much earlier now and I'm starting to wonder how I'm going to run the Bamber-girl when I lose the sunlight. Maybe I'll have to do morning runs and then go into work a little later. Hmm, running in the morning...blah. And then what will I do when I get up in the dark and get home in the dark? I miss summer already.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Last 10 of Nike Route

Tina and I decided to do the last 10 miles of the Nike route, just for the experience. Also, I think this will be the hardest section. There is a 3 mile section that runs down the Great Highway (boring!), then about 4.5 miles around Lake Merced (seems to go forever!) and than back down the Great Highway to the finish line. I remember this section from last year as being pure hell.

We took off about 8:00 Sunday morning. It was typical San Francisco, overcast and cool. I was glad to have worn my long running pants instead of shorts. The first section of the Great Highway seemed to go by really quickly and the lake seemed to be okay at first too. Of course, Tina mentioned that it probably can't compare to last year when I'd run 16 miles already before hitting this section. Oh yeah....that's right. As we were continuing around the lake, I realized why it's so daunting. I have no sense of direction when I'm running around the lake and I don't feel like I'm making progress in getting around, but just running and running. I tried to notice some landmarks so when we're running Nike I can remind myself where I'm at. Then I noticed that there are 1/2 mile markers on the course, so that will come in handy too.

We finally made it around the lake, after almost taking the wrong road and took off back down the Great Highway. A little ways past the zoo I called for a snack. I think we were just shy of 9.5 miles or so. I felt like I was starting to lose focus (starting?!?!) and we stopped for a quick bite. I choked down two Shot Blocks. Mistake. I got side stitches after that and had to pinch my side and really concentrate on my breathing to make them go away. No more Shot Blocks! That was their last chance. I'm sticking with the salty pretzels from now on. And maybe some CarbBoom. Maybe.

Our training calendar said 7-9 miles for Nike Full Marathoners. Over achievers that we are, we did 10.4 in about 1:54. Nice going!

Tina: "Yeah, but can we keep it up for 16 more miles?"
Me: "Don't know about you, but me? Uh, no."


Thursday, August 31, 2006

Hills and Mozzies

Tina, Bam, Teva (Tina's newest addition to her K9 family) and I hit Coyote Hills for our 'track' workout. We're still nursing our respective injuries...well, Tina and I are anyway. So we parked inside the gates instead of parking outside like we do when we want to tack on additional mileage. We warmed up by getting to 'The hill' and then did 3 sets of up and down the big hill. By the time we did the last hill the sun had started to set and we were being devoured by mosquitoes. We hot footed it out of the park, into the truck and home. Too late, we were already bitten up and Tina's sure we're going to get West Nile. Maybe it's time to use some bug spray. I wonder if it's sweat-proof.

About 3.25 miles in 42 mins. It's the hill's fault.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Slackin' off but supporting the team

I was going to leave work early tonight and head to the pool to swim and be home by 6:30. My PDL softball team (that I've only subbed on this season) made the playoffs. Yes, a miracle of sorts. It's probably because I haven't been playing. :-)

Well, things didn't really go according to plan and I left work a bit late. So I blew off my swim and went to support the team instead. Jeff, Bam and I went out and did our best to cheer PDL on to a win. It was an admirable effort, but not meant to be. Still...nice job PDL on a great season!

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Quick jaunt

Bam and I did our usual run from home, to Shinn pond (stop for a few treats), out to Mission Blvd and beyond, to the turn around point, then back past Shinn pond (stop for a few treats) and back home. 5.02 miles in 52:30.

Now, I'm starting to wonder about this shin of mine. It was a little achy during the 16-miler on Saturday, but nothing too bad. And afterwards it didn't really ache at all. Tonight, tho it was giving me all kinds of grief. Aching while I ran, aching after I ran, still aching. What's up with that?!??! Not sure what to do about it, but keep on truckin' and hope it gets better. Sigh.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Taking it easy...until the 16-miler

Ah, it's over. Now I can smile.

Since my shin has been acting up, I took Thursday off of track, Friday is usually a rest day, so I had two rest days in a row. Wow, what did I do with all that extra time? Don't know, but it went by pretty quickly.

Today Tina and I headed up to the Berkeley marina for our 16-mile run. I've been having shin issues and Tina went to a wedding last night and got some huge blisters on her toes. Ouch, I don't know how she managed to run on those feet! We started out slowly to see how we were going to hold up to our various injuries. We decided that if we had to cut it short, we would just go as far as we could and that's that.

I was also trying out my new hydration belt, an Amphipod RunLite belt. It only came with 2-8oz bottles, so I'll have to pick up a couple more, but overall it worked pretty well. Pretty comfortable and with the different bottles I can carry both Gatorade Rain and water. I think it's a keeper.

Oh, yeah, so anyway, we made it to the 6 mile mark pretty comfortably, then the 7 mile mark and finally the 8 mile turn around. The next couple of miles back weren't too bad, but about 10 miles in I started feeling exhausted and HUNGRY! A few pretzels at each water stop just wasn't enough. Guess I really need to try the heavy duty Gu or Shot Blocks again. They probably provide more concentrated calories than the pretzels. The salty food sure does taste good though. With about 3-1/2 miles left, I really started feeling achy. I just wanted to see that finish line. One more water stop at about 2 miles and it was into the home stretch. The last two miles are the longest miles you can imagine! I thought I'd never see that finish line! I finally made it and quickly grabbed some food and drink. Whew, only 3 more 'long' runs to go. An 18-miler, a 20-miler and the big one---the Nike 26.2. The end is in sight.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


Yum, pool water tastes good.... :-P

Tina, good sport that she is, met me at the pool this morning at 6:00 since I can't make it tonight. In fact, she was already there when I arrived and they hadn't even unlocked the door yet. Now that's dedication.

Some nice things about swimming early: the pool seems cleaner, although it seems to have more chlorine too; all four lanes are open for lap swimming; the water, for some reason, didn't seem as cold; and we had a lane all to ourselves for most of the time. We managed a quick 30 laps before Tina had to split. I paddled out a quick 10 more before heading to the showers and off to work.

A couple of random items of note:

1) I'm tired a lot of the time now. Perhaps doing too much? Don't know, but I also feel like I need to keep up with the schedule. How do people do this all the time?

2) My shin is achy. Again, doing too much or too fast? Again, don't know.

3) I'm hungry all the time. Some folks are amazed that I'm not losing weight, but they should see the amount of food I eat. That's a bonus for sure. :-)

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Not quite as fast

Bam and I went for our buddy run this evening. Tina's taking a rest from running. Looks like I spoke too soon when I said no one was injured on our smokin' Saturday run. Her foot has been bothering her and since we have another big run this Saturday, she's resting up.

We headed out from home and did an Alameda Creek trail run. Tonight we went out by Shinn Pond and out towards Mission Blvd to the end of the trail and back. I started feeling some aches in my shin so I didn't push for 10 min miles tonight. I think Bam is glad. :-)

We did have to make a pit stop at the Shinn Pond park area. Bam spotted this couple who always hand out treats to the dogs. They bring an enormous bag and it's just too funny to see the dogs all sitting in a circle around them. So a few treats later we were on our way again and made it home just as the sun was setting. 5.03 miles in a little over 52 mins.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Happy B'Day to Me....

Maybe not the greatest way to start a birthday....Tina and I were on the trail by 6:45 this morning in order for me to complete our 14-miler before my birthday surprise from Jeff. I have to be 'home and ready to go' by 11:30.

Tina had map duty this time, as I was an abysmal failure at that last time. We started out with a long, flat, boring stretch along the Alameda Creek trail all the way out to the bay and back to a turning point. That part was about 6.5 miles. Then we went around Coyote Hills and up the Meadowlark trail, where we hit the big hill. Then down and around and back out to the flat trail for the home stretch.

Matt, Tina's husband, was our 'support' and manned the water stop. He had pretzel sticks (yum!) and gatorade for us at 6.5 miles and about 11.75 miles and at the end. Kudos to Matt for being our water-guy! And kudos to Tina for managing her longest run to date! Nice job! We had a good run. Neither of us got sick...seems the pretzels are a keeper as a snack for both of us. Nice dose of both carbs and salt. Neither of us got injured....although we both have some achy joints. And we kept a pace that will easily have us finishing the Nike in under 5:30....we managed about 11.40/mile for the 14 miles. Woohoo! We gave ourselves a nice, loud "Go Team!" as we finished up and got some strange looks.

I made it home in plenty of time to shower up, and get ready for my surprise...a spa package at Watercourse Way! Yippeee! Some time in the steam room followed by a massage with hot stones. Ahhh, I felt like a well cooked noodle by the time I was finished. Wow, that was way better than an ice bath. A fattening birthday dinner and then I crashed early.....another year older.....but still young at heart.

Friday, August 18, 2006

General achiness

Went to track last night. Well, our version of track anyway. Tina had called Coach for the workout and we were to do 1/2 mile warm up, 1 hard, 1 easy mile. Then of course a cool down. We decided we only needed 1/4 mile warm up and then did our stretching and started our 1 hard mile. My shin was still achy so I tried not to push too hard. Tina was cruising! We did our 1 easy mile and then hit the road. Come to find out we were supposed to do 1 hard lap followed by one easy one, for a total of 2 miles. Aw man, Maybe that wouldn't have seemed quite so bad.

So today not only is my shin achy, but my whole leg aches. Feels like pain in the joints or in the bone. Completely unlike muscle aches. Ugh, I hope I'm better by tomorrow for the 14-miler. I think the order for the evening is ibuprofen and rest. We're supposed to hit the trail at 6:30 tomorrow, so if I'm not back by noon, send out the search dogs. No...seriously. :-P

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Short swim

Just a quick 30 laps tonight, but in a record 25ish minutes. Not too shabby. I'm feeling some achiness in my shin since my run last night. Okay, so it actually started during my run last night, but I decided to push through it. I hope I haven't done any lasting damage.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Hoofin' it

I didn't feel like running and my buddy must be busy this evening 'cuz she didn't email me about running. Oh, maybe she was waiting for me to email her. Oops. Anywho, Bam and I took off from home and headed out toward Shinn Pond, out to Isherwood and back home. A short run, only 4.75 miles, but I made up for it by getting it over with in 48 minutes. Yep, we were cruisin'. Another Tuesday run bites the dust and Bam and I are pooped again. Time to start carb loading for the 14 miler this Saturday. Yum.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Mapping skills needed

I took over mapping out our 7-9 mile run for this evening. I pulled up a map of Garin Regional Park and plotted out a beautiful, brand new, never before run by Tina, Kristi or Bam, route of 9 miles. I even sent it to Tina for pre-run approval.

So, for those of you who don't know, there are these little, tiny numbers on a trail map that indicate elevation changes. Come to find out those little numbers are pretty important. Note to self...remember to check those little numbers. Anyway, I was very prepared as the three of us headed out for our run. I had a copy of the map, a general idea about where we needed to turn, and I even had an 'escape' route mapped in case we were too tired to do 9, but instead wanted to do closer to 7 miles.

We start out with no problems, fairly flat, nice scenery, not too hot. We even forged a couple of very small streams. Look at us go! Then we turn a corner and there's some uphill sections, not a problem. Then turn onto the South Fork trail and we hit some hills! Um, yeah, this is where those little numbers come in handy. Looks like the first loop I mapped out had a 935 foot elevation change. Okay, I take responsibility for that one.

At one point Bam was running around some trees, just after we had gone through a gate. All of a sudden Tina and I hear this growly, snarly sound. Like idiots, we both stop and look. Duuhhhh. I called Bam over and we all took off running! Tina and I convinced each other that it was the gate making noise and not a mountain lion. Right, no mountain lions out here. Even tho there were deer, which I'm sure mountain lions would like to eat...nope, pretty sure there aren't any mountain lions.

Turns out to be a good thing I brought the map. When we got to the point where we were supposed to turn onto the next loop we could see that the elevation change was 1100+ feet. Ooops. Okay, we're going to go up part way and take that little shortcut trail on the map. So part way was still 600+ feet and the little shortcut was a 'storm damaged' trail. Interesting to say the least. We kept on truckin' and made it 7 miles in an astonishingly slow 1:57 (hey, remember all those HUGE hills I mentioned?!!?) and out of the park by dark. So, Tina says I get an A+ for bringing the map, and an A for scenery, but an F for checking the elevation. Looks like my mapping privileges have been revoked.

But let's look at the bright side! The hills on the Nike run should be no problem after this puppy!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Short track

No, the track hasn't gotten any's still .25 miles. :-) What was shorter this week was our workout. The official workout was to choose either 3 miles at marathon pace, or 1 hard mile, one recovery mile. But, since we were both feeling a bit blah about our workout we decided to make up our own track drill. We did sprints. So, 1/4 mile warm up, 8 sets of sprints for a total of 1 mile and 1/2 mile cool down. A grand total of 18 minutes running. Like I said...short.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Water logged

Despite my lethargy, which was threatening to have me spend the evening on the couch, I met Tina at the pool for a few laps. I was determined to get in there, get my laps done, and get out. Wow, I really am getting burnt out.

Anyway, Tina was a few laps ahead of me by the time I made it to the pool, so I had some catching up to do. Then paddle-hand guy joined our lane and I think we were getting in his way. We made it to 30 laps and then pushed to get 6 more in so that we would make our 1/2 mile. I got in paddle-hand's way once and Tina said he made a noise of disgust. Sheesh. For our last 4 laps we did paddle hands too, just for variety.

Tomorrow is supposed to be a rest day, but I may push myself to do my 9-miler and have a free weekend. Okay, I mean another free weekend. Woohoo!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Too tired

I took Bam out for a run tonight. I was hoping to make 6 miles, but believe it or not the girl ran out of steam on me. I think she's still trying to recover from her busy weekend at the beach.

We started out at the house and headed down the Alameda Creek trail. Just a quick out and back 5 miler, in about 54 minutes. I tried to do some sprints on the way back to the house, but I was literally having to drag Bam along. Seriously, the leash was taut....behind me, not in front as usual. I gave up after about 3 sets.

That's one tired girl I've got.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Beach time

We spent the weekend in Monterey, well just outside Monterey if you want to be technical. Jeff wanted to fish and Bam and I love to hang out on the beach. Especially the beach in Carmel. Carmel is an amazingly dog friendly town. Quite a few of the stores have dog water bowls in front and cookies for 4 legged children. There's also a great 'pet boutique' called Diggity Dog. They have awesome treats and all sorts of great dog stuff. 'We' like to stop in there. Usually the sales folks have free samples for dogs with sad puppy dog eyes. Bam works that one pretty well.

So we got up Saturday morning all set to hang out at the beach while Jeff did the fishing thing. We drive out to the beach, close to Moss Landing, and pull into the parking lot. Uh, what's that big sign with a the picture of a dog and a red line through it? No dogs allowed?!? Come to find out all the state beaches are 'no dog' beaches. Sheesh!! Horses are allowed but dogs aren't ?!?!? What is up with that?

Well, we dropped Jeff off and drove about 20 minutes down to Carmel which as I said has an awesome and dog friendly beach. Bam and I hung out there for a few hours then went and picked up the intrepid fisherman. When we got there to pick him up, a ranger came by and we asked him about dog beaches by Moss Landing. Turns out there's only one, and that's because it's a county beach. So we drove over and hung out there for a few more hours. A few dogs, not too many, but not a bad beach.

Sunday home. All in all a great weekend, and one tired pup!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Running by moonlight

One thing I need to mention. I'm getting burnt out. I think I'm doing more cross training and weight training than I did last time, which I'm sure in the long run will be good for me, but it's exhausting. Almost every night there's something to do. And still 2-1/2 months of training left. I cherish the 'rest' days so I can just walk Bams and then do nothing! Okay, okay, enough whining.

I decided to do my long run tonight since I'll be out of town this weekend and then I won't have to worry about it. Tina agreed to come with me, that way she can go do her volunteer work at the Marine Mammal Center and see the cutie Stellar sea lions.

We needed a 12 mile route and Tina plotted an 11.85 mile course through Coyote Hills. Close enough. Unfortunately, I couldn't start until 6:30 and we'd be pushing the darkness, but we decided to trudge on anyway. I warned her that she should bring her head lamp, but she didn't. Boy was I right on that one.

We were cruising right along at a decent pace for 10.5 miles. Yes, there were some hills, and some boring, long straight stretches, but all in all we were kicking butt. Well, about this time it started getting dark and it was more difficult to see which trail was which. At this point we need to leave the main road and do a loop around the marsh to get our required mileage. "Let's do the long way." Tina says. Um, okay. Well, I don't know if the map was wrong, or if we went the wrong way, but we ended up at a dead end. Crap. It's pretty dark by now and we decide to just turn around and head back to the main road. We finally make our way back to the road and decide to walk the rest of the way to the car. Okay, one more little issue. We were supposed to end up by the gate, but we ended up further back. So after running ourselves into exhaustion, we now have a 1 mile walk back to the car. Total run time...2:33. Total mileage....12.12. Add in another mile of walking and we were 2 tired puppies. We made it to the car about 9:30. Yes, 3 hours later. Whose idea was this again?? All in all the run was really tough, but we made good time. Especially since we were totally lost for a brief period.

I was so tired, I went home, showered, took 2 Tylenol PM caplets and went to bed without dinner. Hmm, this feels suspiciously like being punished.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Flipper Man

Tina and I hit the pool tonight for our cross training workout. We arranged to meet at 7:00, a little later than last week, in an effort to miss the crowd. Also that gives me time to get the Bams walked.

So we head into the pool area and it doesn't look too crowded. Well, the number of people might have been less than last week, but it's tough to choose which lane we should swim in. The slow lane has several REALLY slow people in it. In fact, one woman is snorkeling. I'm not sure if she was looking for tropical fish, or what, but she was barely moving. The fast lane has only 3 people in it, and one of them is slower than we are, so we opt for the fast lane. What we really need is a 'medium' lane, but that's not an option.

The other folks in the fast lane are a young lady we've seen there before who has beautiful form, barely makes a splash. Then there's flipper man. This guy is swimming like someone from Atlantis. He about ran Tina over several times. He even asked the lifeguard to make the slow guy change lanes. Whew, a little intense. He said he usually swims about 6000 meters, but today he's only doing 2000.

Well, we managed to do 40 laps in about 40 minutes, so there.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Hills in reverse

Tina and I are getting bored with running the same old routes. Unfortunately we don't know of any different ones in the area. So, tonight we hit Garin regional park, along with Bam. She isn't too picky about where we run, just happy to be out on the open road. :-) Tina made the decision to run the big hill loop tonight, so it's all her fault.

We decided to run the loop in reverse, just for variety. Drats! We still have to go up the big hill at the beginning. Then we hit a nice little downhill section. Then we went up, up, up. Not too steep, but a really long hill! Funny, but I don't remember it being so downhill in the reverse direction. Selective memory?!? When we came to the T intersection at the top of the hill, I tried to tell Tina that we should go left. No, no, she thinks we need to go up to the top of the nasty hill! Okay, in her defense, I'm usually the directionally challenged one. So we went up the hill and found ourselves on a trail we don't usually run. No sweat, we could see that it looped back towards the parking area. It did shorten the run a bit tho...good thing we parked farther away to add some distance. A total of 3.6 miles in 50 minutes. Slow, yes, but it was the hills' fault. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Monday, July 31, 2006

New gig

Today was my first day at my new job. I think I'm going to like it, although the commute leaves something to be desired. The people here are amazingly friendly and I think the projects will be interesting. One project is an AML study. I'm looking forward to working on that one. And some studies are planned for CLL as well. Right now I'm the only programmer, so I'll be pretty busy once I get going. I know it takes some time to get into the swing of things, but I hope it won't take too long. I don't do so well with not having much to do. I'd rather be really busy...sure makes the days go by faster.

I've been taking my motorcycle to work, but think I'll try the train next week. I'll still have to ride over the bridge, but it's only about 15 miles from home instead of the ~30 to work. I just need to get the schedule set so I can get everything done in a day that needs to be done. Work, walking the Bams, and any training duties that need to be performed before relaxing for the evening. Once marathon training is over (2-1/2 months from now, but who's counting) my schedule will free up a bit. I'm sure Jeff will be glad of that. ;-)

Friday, July 28, 2006

Messing with the schedule...again

Tina and I couldn't coordinate our schedules to run tomorrow, so instead of resting today we both decided to do our Saturday long run today instead, although at different times. Tina had a route all mapped out and gave me directions over the phone. And I'm off. Down our usual trail at Coytote Hills, up a big, big hill, out the trail towards the bay. All the way to the bay and turn around. Back to the trail and towards the truck. Here is where something went wrong. I made a left when I should have gone straight, I think. Getting pretty tired about now and running out of time too. I need to be somewhere at 7:30 and it's 6:15 now. Hurry, hurry. I finally find the right trail and get back to the truck after 9.8 miles and 1 hour 47 minutes. Whew, just enough time to get home, shower and head out. Not a bad run time, but exhausting! I am beat. Tomorrow.....REST! Woohoo!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

No wimps!

There was no 'official' track workout tonight due to the Cause for Celebration in San Francisco. TNT'ers were invited to attend a sort of pep rally for the cause. Free food and drinks! Not for us hard core folks, no sir. The three of us (Tina, Bam and I) took off for Coyote Hills. We ran 1.5 miles in at about a 10 minute/mile pace until we got to the base of the hill. It's not a really steep hill, but it's .3 miles long. Up and down we went. Then up backwards and down. (This is supposed to work a different muscle group, and man were my quads burning!) Then 1/2 way up and back down. At this point I think Bam was confused about what the heck we were doing. I'm sure she was thinking, "Uh, we've already been by here several times. I'd like to sniff something else!" We did one more steep but shorter hill just for good measure and made our way back to the car. All in all we did 5 miles in about 1:10. But remember, that includes those hills! No wimps here!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Sometimes it's good not to see

Tina and I met up at the Newark community center for our swimming session. It was really crowded tonight for some reason. There were 6-7 people in our lane, including one woman who seemed to be doing synchronized herself. Strange. Also, the pool was pretty nasty tonight. Tina's goggles tend to fog up and this is one time where I'd like to have traded her. I didn't really want to see the multitude of things that were swirling around the pool. We managed 32 laps in 32 minutes, including rest periods and waiting for people to get out of the way periods. Then we hit the weight room for a bit more exercise. I forgot my tennis shoes, so I was wearing flip flops. A big no-no in a weight room. I was duly scolded and promised to bring proper attire next time. Note to self: make sure to bring proper attire.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Neither darkness, nor pesticide spraying, nor blooming migraine...

..shall keep the intrepid runners from running.

'We' (Tina) decided to run this morning to beat the heat. Bam and I were at Tina's house at 5:30 despite the thumping in my head that warned of an approaching migraine. One of us was rearing to go..and it wasn't me....or Tina. We drove over to Coyote Hills, which since it was still dark was closed. There was also a sign posted that the trail was closed due to spraying and wouldn't be opening until 2 pm. Luckily we saw the park ranger and asked him about running the trail. He told us which section we should run on to avoid being pesticided and gave us 'permission' to enter the park despite the posted warnings.

We parked outside the gates and took off on our run. Tina had quickly replotted our route so we could avoid the dreaded spraying. Suspiciously we were going to have to hit some hills...which I think was her plan all along. We were troopers though and did a whole 6 miles in about 1:15. Go Team!

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Tired buns

Jeff and I had tickets today for the Moto GP motorcycle races at Laguna Seca Raceway. We had already decided to ride 2-up on Jeff's bike, since we were both unsure if I was ready to tackle a long, traffic filled ride on Highway 17. So, we packed up and headed out. Can I just was so HOT! We really should have left earlier. Hindsight, yada yada. Traffic wasn't too bad until we hit Santa Cruz. I think everyone in the Bay area was heading for the beach. We sat and sat in traffic, which is way worse on a bike than in a car. It took us about 2.5 hours for what should have been a 1.5 hour drive, at the most.

We eventually arrived at the raceway after a twisty little road that was reserved for race attendees on bikes only. Cool. Next time (if there is a next time), I'm riding my own bike. The coolest thing was pulling into the motorcycle parking area and seeing just a sea of bikes parked all up and down the hills. Wow. There must have been a few thousand bikes. Every make and model you could imagine, and some you probably couldn't. The parking area was all dried grass and Jeff and I thought about what would happen if a hot exhaust pipe sparked a grass fire. All those bikes up in flames. Not good.

We headed to our seats to check out the race. Have I mentioned how HOT is was today?? It was so hot that the Coca-Cola bottling company was giving away bottles of water instead of selling them! We were rooting for Rossi to win, and he was making his move, until....with 3 laps to go his bike started smoking. Bummer. It's amazing how these riders just lay the bikes almost completely over in the turns. Jeff thought he'd like a chance to get on a bike with the track all to himself and see what it's like. Might be fun....but not on my bike!

Enough of the heat, time to head home. Once again sitting in a staggering amount of traffic and sitting and waiting and sitting, etc. We didn't take 17 home, opting instead for the more boring, but somewhat more efficient 101. At least we were moving, but heading through Gilroy it was again, HOT, and the smell of garlic was heavy in the air.

Let's far today we've sat on a motorcycle seat for 2.5 hours, a bleacher seat for several hours and now we're back on the motorcycle seat for a couple hour ride home. Yes that all adds up to very tired buns. I'm not sure if I would have been better off on my own bike or not. I thought the back seat on Jeff's bike was way more comfortable than my own seat, but now I'm not so sure. I do remember reading a review of his bike and the writer complaining about the 'washboard' seat. Seems to be a pretty accurate review from my perspective. Corbin seats are looking better all the time!

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Heat + Hills = Exhaustion

Okay, so I guess we all know what Tina thought of the run today!

We finally attended our first 'official' TNT run and this was a serious kick ass run! Many, many hills spread over 10.1 miles and I think it was already close to 80 degrees when we started at 7:30 this morning. I was hoping to cover the 10 miles in 2 hours. That would be a steady 5 mph, 12 min mile pace. Perfect to judge the marathon pace I'd like to set. Okay, that plan was working for the first half of the run where the hills weren't quite so steep. The second half was a joke as far as my pace went. The hills were much steeper and some of them were very, very long. After one particularly gruesome hill, I hit a flat and thought I could breathe a bit. Nope, turn the corner and the hill continued. I have to admit to walking some of these hills. The combined heat and exertion of trying to run them all was leaving me light headed. I finished in about 2:10, and I'm not going to complain about it.

I ended up getting a little ahead of Tina, so once I reached the finish line and realized I wasn't going to keel over, I walked out about a 1/4 mile to run her in. I hid out in the shade of a tree and when I saw her coming I jogged over and we finished up. Did I get appreciation for this effort?!? No, I get "You could have at least brought the car!" Hahahahaha! :-)

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Fast or of each

Tina got our workout instructions and we met up at the high school track. One other TNT'er showed up, a mentor, who gave us a mini-lecture about attending the 'official' TNT training/runs, making a commitment, yada yada. Sorry, but driving 2 hours round trip for 30-45 minutes of training doesn't seem like an effective use of my time. Now that we're up into double digit mileage tho, we've agreed that it would probably be good to attend the supported runs. It's nice to have someone waiting with water, gatorade and gummy bears every couple of miles.

Anywhoo, we did our 1/2 mile warm up. And man did we warm up! It's been in the upper 80's here, which is quite warm for us. Running at 6:30PM leaves me sweating and wheezing. After the warm up and stretching, we were to do one 'hard' lap and one 'easy' lap. I wanted to do my hard lap in under 10 minutes and my easy lap at marathon pace. My hard lap came in at just over 9 minutes. My marathon lap was around 11 minutes. One more walking cool down lap and we were out of there! 2.5 miles total.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Tri, tri again

Tina and I hit the Newark community center pool again last night. We tried to do 4 laps without stopping to rest, instead of resting after 2 laps, and we were mostly successful. We had done about 8 laps when I noticed one of the guys swimming in our lane had a Team in Training swim cap. As he stopped for a breather, I asked him if he was training for a tri. Yep, he's training for the Pacific Grove Wildflower Tri. Funny thing is, another guy swims up and joins the conversation. He's done several tri's, and some of them with TNT too! Wow, TNT'ers are everywhere!! Go Team!

We spent a bit of time chatting about tri's in general, telling them about our marathon training, and even got some good swim stroke tips. I think the training, although tough, would be more interesting. If you get bored with running, go swim or bike. Now if we get bored with running...too bad, got to keep going! Both guys said that they didn't really swim before joining the team, so maybe Tina and I aren't as far away from a Tri as we thought. Maybe Wildflower next year, eh Tina? We agreed that we'd probably want to try out a sprint distance first. That's 'only' a 1/2 mile swim. We did a total of 40 laps tonight, or just over 1/2 a mile. This was despite an obsessed guy with paddle-hands who tried to run us slower folks over, and a water aerobics wench who I caught splashing lap swimmers while they were trying to breathe!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Crack of dawn

Tina can't run tonight, so she conned me into getting up at the crack of dawn to do our buddy run. Man, I am such a good running buddy.

She picked me up about 5:50AM and we drove a couple of blocks over to Shinn Pond. This is where I usually walk Bam and she can be off leash, so we took her along for a morning run. I think she was the only one awake. At first I thought it was going to be pretty cool, but it quickly warmed up and I was sweating like a pig, as usual. Bam was happy as a clam and ran hiter and yon. Tina had no residual effects from Saturday's run, and I did okay. I was starting to get side cramps towards the end of the run. Not sure what that was about.

I did notice that the people seemed friendlier than those we see running in the early evening. Everyone says 'hello' and one guy was WAY too cheerful for so early in the day. He must have had his coffee before his run.

Anyway, we did a smidge over 4 miles in about 47 minutes. This includes a couple of puppy pit stops and clean up....just in case you needed to know.

Monday, July 17, 2006

New washer, new dryer

My washing machine died yesterday, so we did some online research for a new one. They have a pretty nice one at Costco and Jeff's boss said they have the same one and it works really well. I compared the Costco price to the Sears price and it is $500 cheaper at Costco. Since it comes with an endorsement, we just picked that one up instead of running all over the place trying to find the best machine for the best deal. And we might as well have the matching dryer, eh? Wouldn't want a mismatched set, after all. So now we (read Jeff) just need to hook everything up and I'll perform the first test with the new machinery. I'm already liking the 'whitest whites' setting even tho I'm not really sure what it is. Just sounds good, don't you think?

Sunday, July 16, 2006


What would make one drive to a golf course where it is over 100 degrees and tee off at 12:30?

No, really, I'm asking...what would make someone do that?!?! I'd have to say insanity. But then I guess that would make me also insane for agreeing to go along and play slave...or caddy if you prefer.

A nice broiling afternoon spent pushing a bag of golf clubs up hills, down hills, across the grass. Wow, I was wiped out by the time we finished. It's probably about a 10 mile walk, add in the heat and sun and hills and I was ready for bed. I had thoughts of taking Bam for a quick run, but quashed that idea. She got her usual walk around Shinn pond instead. Not too exciting, but she doesn't seem to mind.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Saturday Run

Tonight Tina and I decided to head out toward Coytote Creek and do the 'new' section that we did before and then the loop for a total of somewhere around 8 miles. I didn't bring Bam, although she gave me the biggest puppy dog eyes you've ever seen. I felt so bad about leaving her at home, but I think more than 6-6.5 is too much for her.

So we arrived and headed out on the trail. And before long, Tina wasn't feeling so good. We couldn't figure out if it was what she ate, or just being tired, or dehydrated, or what, but she was very nauseous. So we slowed down the pace...yes, it's possible to go even slower than we usually do. I volunteered to head back early, but she was very determined to finish the run. She reminded me that coach always says 'No Wimps!' Ah, but I reminded her that coach also says 'Don't let ego overrule good judgement.' Anyway, we did the whole darn thing for a total of 7.7 miles in about 1:37.

A very strange coincidence, but that's just about the pace we'll need to finish the marathon in 5:30 (my goal). As I figure it, 5:30 is 330 minutes.

330 minutes/26.2 miles=12:595 min/mile.

And look at this: 97 min/7.7 miles=12.597 min/mile.

That's cool because at that pace I felt that I could go for a while. I thought I was really going to have to start pushing my pace to make a 5:30 marathon, but now I'm thinking we will be able to handle it. Hip, hip, hurrah! See Tina, I told you we could do it!

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Track workout

Tina led our track workout this week and we actually had one other TNT'er join us tonight. The schedule was to do 19, 21 or 23 minutes of running then 6 sprints. Sprints= cones set up at each end of the straight on the track, you sprint between the cones then recover on the turns. Tina actually bought cones for us! How 'geeky runner cool' is that? So I did about 22 minutes, 2 miles, then my 6 sprints for another .75 miles. A .25 mile cool down (walking) and I get 3 miles total. I cheated and didn't do a warm up since I showed up a little late, so I don't get to add anything for that. I did the 2.75 miles in about 30 minutes, not bad. Tina's getting good at leading the track workout! She should be a mentor next season!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Hills, hills, hills

Tina, Bam and I hit Garin park last night for our run. 'We' decided to do the tougher of the two loops. Okay, really I was the one who made the choice. Our original plan was to do both loops, but that's really overtraining, as it is about 6 miles and would have taken more than an hour. The training schedule says 'No more than 45 minutes.' Of course, we haven't been complying with that to date, but that's not the point. We were both a bit tired and not motivated, so instead of doing both loops we decided to only do one. And since we were only doing one, I chose the harder of the two. About 1/2 way up the first big hill I was really sorry I had picked this one! I forgot how horrible and long the first hill is. Some not so bad hills and then one more big bad hill a little more than 1/2 way through the run. Wow, that is a tough one. But we made it! Go Team! With a couple of misdirected attempts at forging a new trail, we ran about 4 miles in about 55 minutes. Slow, yes, but as I said those hills are tough.....except for Bam. She probably ran 8 miles in about 55 minutes. Show off.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Yesterday and Today

On Monday Tina and I hit the pool for some lap swimming. Yeah, we're messing with the schedule this week. We managed to do 18 laps (36 lengths) which is supposed to be 1/2 a mile. Woohoo! We made it! Still resting pretty frequently, but shorter and shorter rests than before. I even did the last 4 lengths without stopping in between! Major accomplishment, if I do say so myself.

Today I hit the gym to do my weights. 30 min on the elliptical, then weights and abs. Then home to walk the monster dog!

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Caddy or be the judge

I used to play golf with Jeff and boy did we play a lot. Too much I guess, because I have no interest in playing. None, zip, nada, zilch, null, zero. But to spend a little time with Jeff, I've agreed to caddy for him on occasion. Before I left on my week long trip to Illinois, I agreed to caddy the Sunday after I got back, which was today.

He was meeting up with a couple of guys from Apple, who I've met and are nice guys, at a course close to us called Callippe. I've never played there and Jeff just went for the first time last week. It was a nice day when we started, around 8:45. We thought they would fill the foursome with someone else, but it was just us. So our tee time came and off we went. The first couple of holes were great. Tooling along and then wham the heat started up! The little thermometer on the golf bag said it was about 100 degrees. The first 9 was very walker friendly. Not so the back 9 which was all uphill. Impossible you say?? Well, it sure felt that way.

A professional caddy gets at least 10% of the players earnings for doing the job. The job includes checking yardages, cleaning the clubs and the ball, and mostly carrying the clubs. In my case I push the clubs because we have a cart, but I tell you what, pushing it up those hills is tiring! Since Jeff isn't making money as a golfer (yet), 10% of nothing is nothing. I do get the benefit of the exercise tho, so that's something.