Tuesday, January 27, 2015

February Workouts


 With 2 big races coming up in each of the next two months, the time has come to squeeze every last ounce of speed out of these old legs. To do so, I need to hit the track again if I am to reach my goals.  

Here’s a breakdown of the next 4 weeks

·         Week 1  (Feb 3):  12 x 400 with 200 meter recovery

·         Week 2 (Feb 10):  4 x 1600 with 800 recovery

·         Week 3 (Feb 17):  Ladder Week (200, 400, 800, 1200, 1600, 800, 400, 200 with ½ recovery)

·         Week 4 (Feb 24):  12 x 400 Hills workout – 2 mi. warm up to the hill, run hills, 2 mi cool down back to PDS.

I will start with some 400s to rev up our leg turn over. This will be followed with some mile repeats to push up both my heart rate and my lactic acid threshold. Week three, I will hit a combination of systems by pushing up my leg turnover while also getting some lactic acid threshold work. The last week February, I hit my only hill workout of this early spring cycle. This workout will help me build some power in my quads as well as engaging my hip flexors.

Join me at PDS for my workout or just join me for the warm up/cool down while doing your own track workout. Sometimes just having others out there helps make a difference.

Sharing one thought at time,

The Cool Down Runner

 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Marathon Photo

What runner doesn’t like to have pictures of their race day efforts? I am no different. A picture of me striding strong to the finish or flashing under the finish line banner is a must keep.

These big races have photographers along the course capturing pictures that they hope to sell us runners after the race. We have come to know and expect it. Therefore, there was no surprise yesterday when I received an email with a link to my photos from the Disney races. Awesome, I couldn’t wait to look through them.

Browsing through them, most were either too distant or too dark for my taste. For the most part, the Disney races are run at night. With the only light coming from the camera’s flash, I looked like a white fence post with an orange shirt hanging from the top. My shorts and shoes just melted into the night.

I will say that there were a few decent photos. There were enough that I looked into purchasing a few of them. Oh, the sticker shock that I received. Getting just one photo would run me well over $30 dollars. Ok, maybe I should just look at downloading this photo. Well, this was $29 dollars – just for photo to be downloaded.

They also offered the option of downloading all of my photos for $69 dollars. Ok, this sounded like a better option so I went with it. Even thou, most of the photos were not very good.

Once I download them however, I found that “all” was really “all” for one race and not “all” of the races.  There must have been some fine print somewhere that I missed.

As I set here typing this post, I realize that I just contributed to continuation of their business practices. Honestly, $29 to download just one image is too much.

Look at what iTunes did for music. Consumers can buy the song that they want for a couple of bucks. Why not do the same thing for pictures. Isn’t it better to make a couple of dollars off a few hundred pictures than $29 off a couple of pictures?

One other thing that I would like to point out to the Marathon Photo guys give me one zip file with the high resolution photo, the medium resolution, and the thumbnail version. Don’t make me do a “right-click” and “save-as” to download them. This customer experience could be a lot cleaner.

 

Just a thought from the far side of the moon,

 

The Cool Down Runner

 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Wave Starts

During the Disney World ½ marathon, I was beaten by another 50 year old runner by a scant 8 seconds. Getting beaten doesn’t bother me. Getting beaten by someone in my age group doesn’t bother either. He ran a faster time so I have to congratulate him on his effort.

My frustration comes from not getting to complete head to head. Assuming there were roughly 2 minutes between each wave start, he was either 3 or 4 waves behind me when our race started.

While we both ran the same course, we didn’t run under the same conditions. From about 6 miles on, I was running solo. I suspect that he spent those same miles weaving through the numerous runners from the earlier waves. Personally, I would take his scenario over mine any day.   

Looking at our splits we would have most likely ran the race together. Who knows what would have happened during those last few miles.

 

Sharing one thought at time,

The Cool Down Runner

 

  

Monday, January 19, 2015

Greater Charlotte Health & Fitness 4 miler presented by the Charlotte Running Club


A promise is a promise so on a cold Saturday morning, I was headed down to the “The Park” to help Mike and Steve setup for our club’s 4 mile race.

The race wasn’t until 1:30 but the prework starts many hours before hand. Cones had to be setup. Tables and chair needed to be arranged. Banners hung. Courses marked for the runners. Then, there was the setup for our registration booth.

A few runners mingled in shortly after 10 AM, but by 12 we had a steady stream of runners coming by to either register for the race or pick up their race packets.

Last year, our club did some last minute promotion for the mile race held at the expo, but this year we jumped “in” in a big way.

Under Mike’s direction we created a 4 miler event. Having the 4 miler helped fill the void left when we could not get access to McAlpine for our Winter Classic 8k.

With any first time event there are always few hiccups along the way. The surprise parking fee of $7 for runners was totally unexpected. I wish we could have done something about it, but sometimes these issue are just out of our control. There was also the transition of the registration from being inside the expo to outside just before the race.

We tried to make this as smooth as possible, but it still felt awkward. We certainly didn't want people headed into the expo looking for us. Both will be items that we put on the review list when discussion comes up about this event for next year.

Overall, the event came off pretty well. Plenty of food and water was available. The course was a mixture of road and cross country. As always, the pizzas were a huge hit. The relay went over pretty well.

Probably the nicest part about the race was the shirt. Mike and Laura did an awesome coming up with the design and the going the extra mile to having a both a men’s and women’s version of the shirt. This was definitely a nice touch.

Mike stepped into our club’s race director role a few years ago. Honestly, I don’t know what our club would do without his efforts. Since then, each and every race produced by our club has been better and better.

His only form of payment comes in the knowing that his efforts are greatly appreciate. Make sure he knows it by telling him so. “Thanks You”s mean more than you will ever realize so make sure to use them often.

 

Sharing one thought at time,

The Cool Down Runner

Friday, January 16, 2015

Road to Recovery


After an awesome experience at Disney with the Dopey Challenge, I am back in CLT now. My body is slowly returning to normal. Sometimes, I believe the walking around Disney is harder than running a marathon.

Monday through Wednesday, I kept my mileage to an easy 4 miler. With the rest of the day, I walked the parks. Monday was incredible slow. Tuesday and Wednesday were better. Yesterday, I ran 7 miles. My legs actually felt like they were moving for the first time.

The week post a marathon is always easy one. The body needs time to recharge it batteries after a huge effort. This week will be followed by a getting back to normal mileage week. Then, during the third week I would I will start to throw in a light workout or two. Reminding my legs, I still hope to run fast.

Usually by 4 weeks out I am ready to start digging into some good workouts. This syncs up well with my plans to hit the track for several interval sessons over the next couple of months.

I have a rough draft of these workouts already in the works and will be sharing it in my Charlotte Running Club article for our club's newsletter. I will also post it here in case someone wants to see what my workout schedule is like.

For now, I am just enjoying some easy running and thinking about what I want to do next.

 

Sharing one thought at time,

The Cool Down Runner

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Dopey Challenge Race #4 - Mickey Mouse Marathon


If you have been looking for my Disney Marathon Recap the last few days, please accept my apologies. Once my Dopey i.e Mickey Marathon was in the books, I was off to the parks for some long over do fun. My notebook computer went back in to the case, and I didn’t feel any desire to pull it out until this morning.

So let’s back up to last Sunday morning. For the 4 day in row, I was dashing over to Epcot just after 3 am in the morning. If you must know, by the 4th day the newness starts to wear off on entering the runner village.  

With the temperature hovering new 60 degrees and just a slight wind, the worries shifted from being too cold to being too warm.

I stretched out my towel out on the ground and settled into a comfortable position. To pass the time, I set back and people watched. Runners come in all shapes and sizes. There is no better place to recognize this point then among the 20,000 runners participating in the Disney Marathon.

Around 4:30 I made my way through baggage drop and proceed with the long walk to the starting line.

Upon entering the “A” corral, Tom, Michael, and I chatted for a few minutes. Then, I just focused on doing some leg exercises to get myself ready for the start.

I could feel a tad bit of soreness in my quads but rather I was most worried about my hamstrings. Three straight days of racing had definitely taking a toll on them.

Mickey came on to the stage and after a few quick announcements gave us the 3, 2, and 1 count down. We surged into the night as the fireworks bursted overhead.

Running on adrenalin, I “willed” my legs to start moving. Just like the ½ marathon course, the first mile is slightly uphill. At the mile split, the display clock read 6:24. Runners were starting to string out now. By mile 2, a nice tight back of about 20 or so runners had formed around me.

The pace was a little faster than I expected. My goal was to run a sub 3 hour marathon, so with these early splits well under my goal pace, I just hoped that I hadn’t burned my candle at both ends.

The miles continued to roll back. The entire time, I just set at the back of the pack. During each mile the same thought resonated over and over in the head. Just hang in there. Let’ them do the work and maintain contact. We went under the water way by the Contemporary Hotel.  We headed into the Magic Kingdom through a side entrance to run down Main Street, then around through Tomorrow Land, through Fantasy Land, back through the Castle, and turned right to enter Frontier Land. We then exited on the far side of Magic Kingdom.

A few runners were dropping away from our group but the core group of men and women were still there.

Miles 8, 9, and 10 took us over to and around the Walt Disney World Raceway. Getting into the track was a bit of pain. There was a steep under passes to access the infield that needed to be navigated. This was followed by a hairpin turn so we could run on the track.

All along the course were numerous cast members and family members. A number of customer sports cars were lining the track. At least the exit from the track wasn’t too bad than our entrance. We did have to cross a grassy section.

The course from here took a right and headed over Animal Kingdom. The route to and through Animal Kingdom was pretty much as I remembered it from my last Mickey Marathon.

We ran through Africa, by Everest, by Dinosaur Land and then skirted the front edge of the park entrance.

We followed the exit along the highway from Animal Kingdom. The skies were slightly overcast, but the at least the light was bright enough that we could see now.

I took my first gel at 7 miles, and plan to take my second gel around 16 miles.

 The miles between Animal Kingdome and ESPN Wide World of Sports can test you mentally. There isn’t much to see. The road is pretty much straight, and the only change is the undulation that comes from running across the bridges. .

As we were exiting from Animal Kingdom, this guy comes up into our group and starts to press past us.

The other guys in our group attach on to him and it finally breaks up our group.

At this point, my legs feel the drain of the racing and choose to not go with them.

I finish my second gel and grab a water to wash it down.

Disney races have clocks at every mile mark. These clocks are a huge help because I use them to count down the miles and to estimate what my finish time might be.

Along the way, my brain is continually running a body check with each step. My hamstrings are getting most of the attention during each scan. Turning into Wide World of Sports, the course is a gentle climb. Then, we start weaving around through the various fields, around the track, and run along the warning track with in the baseball stadium.

Heading out the WW of Sports, I pass 20 miles in 2 hours and 8 miles. Mentally, I am already doing the math. 7 minute miles, 10k left, I have the potential of a 2:52 marathon.

The trouble was that my legs were starting to feel the strain from all of the racing miles. They were starting to tighten up and I wasn’t feeling nearly as fluid.

The Army Sergeant was yelling for me to “charge” the hill. This was easy for him to say.

I could feel that I was slowing down, but I was also catching a few other runners. Several of which had been our core group earlier.

I entered Hollywood Studios through side entrance and made my down by Sunset Blvd. Then, I exited from the park and headed over to the board walk by the Epcot resorts.

I always enjoy the run along the board walk section. Then, we enter into Epcot and ran around the world. I am nearly finished with I feel someone coming up behind me. The lead woman had caught me.

She had been in our group early in the race and was definitely making a strong push to the finish.

My legs had reach their breaking point so I was just watched her pull away.

Running by the Epcot ball and exiting the park, I looked at the 26 mile clock. Seeing the 2:48:55 time was unbelievable.

Again, I “willed” my legs to run faster. They hurt but now they only needed to hurt for another 2 tenths of a mile.

I watched as the lead women broke the finish line tape and they shot confetti into the air. Much of it was still floating into the air when I crossed in 2 hours and 50 minutes and 33 seconds.

I watched as the photographers snapped photo after photo of her. Let her enjoy her moment.

I moved on content with the fact that I had just completed 4 days of racing. I kept my goals realistic and far in away exceeded anything that I thought possible.

At 50 years old, this is about a good as I am going to race for 4 straight days.

I took a towel to wipe off the sweat running down in to my eyes. The temperature had risen enough that I was rubbing the sweat from my eyes at numerous times during the race.

I got my Dopey Picture taken and picked up my medals for the Dopey and Goofy Challenges. It felt good to get my clothes from the baggage check. Even thou, it was 60+ degrees, I could feel a chill.

Participating in the Dopy Challenge was an awesome experience. I have been a long time Disney fan so getting to run through the parks is just an added bonus for me.  This 4 day stretch of races just makes me want to do more of their races.

Side note, for some reason my chip was not picked up at the finish of the Disney Marathon. I reached out the Track Shack guys, and they sent my email on to the head timer for the race. They should have it sorted out in a few days. Thanks to the guys from Marathon Photo, I have pictures from all along the course, and pictures of me just crossing the finish line.

Based on the posted results, I will have most likely finished around 23 Overall and 1st in the 50-54 age group.

 

Sharing the last of my Dopey Challenge experiences.

The Cool Down Runner

 

 

 

 

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Dopey Challenge Race #3 – Donald Duck ½ marathon


They say if you do something several days in a row, it becomes habit. I am here to say that getting up at 3 AM is not one of the things that I really want to form in to a habit.

Never the less, my alarm went off at 3 AM, I dressed quickly and headed for the Disney buses to Epcot. The announcer said they were expecting 16 thousand plus for each of the ½ marathon and full marathon races. The buses would be probably loaded and the traffic would be worst getting over to Epcot.

And, yes, it did take a few extra minutes to make the trip, but I was still walking into the Runner’s village by 3:50.

With the temperature hovering in the mid 40s and wind blowing, although not as hard as Wednesday, it was still tough standing around outside.

At 4:45, I shifted to my racing attire, dropped by bag at the baggie check tent, and headed for the starting line.

The starting line for the ½ and full marathons is different from the 10k and 5k starts. There is every bit of a mile walk from the Runner’s village to the starting corral “A”.

Something that did surprise me, 5k and 10k starts were supper crowded, but I easily slide up to the front row. 

Donald gave us the 3, 2, and 1 count down and with the fireworks going off, the ½ marathon had officially started.

The first mile was slightly uphill and nearly a straight shot. I clocked in a 6:01 and felt pretty good about it. My breathing was steady and controlled, and I was focusing on staying as relaxed as possible. Groups were quickly forming due to the head wind so I found a welcoming pack to share the work. Mile two clicked off so did miles, 3, 4, and 5. My Garmin was just shy of each mile mark.

Then, we hit the Magic Kingdom. The crowds were where absolutely awesome. The street were all light up. Cinderella’s castle was nearly glowing.  I got an emotional boost going through this section. We made a right into Tomorrow Land, then a left to catch the edge of Fantasy Land before coming back through the castle. Here, we made a right and headed off into Fronteir Land.

We exited out the side of the Magic Kingdom and started our trek back to Epcot. These miles were long and straight until we hit 10 miles. At this point, we used the on ramps and bridges to make our way back to the Epcot parking lot.

While the majority the ½ course is essentially flat. The bridges are a long slow grind and make the closing miles of this ½ a lot tougher. Throw in the fact that there are not one but two U-turns in the last 2 miles.

Nothing makes the legs sting more than having to do a 180 degree turn.

We entered Epcot via a side gate and made our way by the Epcot ball and up to the lake. Then we were sent back on the parallel path to exit the park in the same fashion as the 5k and 10k.

The state record for males in NC is just over 1:20. This fact was not lost on me during the race. As the miles flowed by, I thought I could be relatively close to it. Although, I could not break this record here at Disney, NC State records can only be broken during race held in side of NC. It would give me a lot of confidence for my attempt next month.

At 10 miles, I wasn’t sure about it. Mile 11, I thought it might be close. At mile 12, I was 1:12:42, and didn’t think it would be possible. Then, the 13 miles marker came into view 1:18:58. Suddenly, the fatigue and cold were lost on the fact that I might still do it.

I pushed hard all the way to the finish. This was probably not the best of ideas considering that I have a marathon tomorrow. The closer that I got the more I drove my legs forward.

I could hear the announcer call me name. I flashed under the finish banner in 1:19:34 to finish 23 overall and 2 in my age group.

Disney results use chip timing so I got beat by another 50 year old that I never saw.  He was 5 seconds in front of me, but he must have started in corral “B”. And, just to be fair about comparisons, I checked and couldn’t find that he had run the 5k or the 10k race. He had to be running on fresh legs.

Disney was on top of it after the race. I picked up my gear back, changed clothes, and headed for the buses. By 7:30, I was walking to my room.

Ok, so I am three races into the Dope Challenge, and I have exceeded my expectation by far. Tomorrow is the marathon. The goal that I set for myself was a sub 3 hour time. Now, I am not sure if this is realistic or not. My legs feel pretty bad after 3 straight races. Tomorrow could very well turn into a nice long run. If it does, so be it. I have still had a fantastic time doing the Dopey Challenge.

All things Disney are great and well worth the money that I spent to do it.

One last thing, I need to give a shout out to Dennis from Queen City Timing. I was standing at the starting line. This guy walks up to me and says “hi”. It takes me a second to register that it is Dennis. Dennis has helped with the Disney Timing for years. I remember him telling me that usually does the timing somewhere along the course. It is always good to see a familiar face when I least expect it.

Talk to you after the marathon,

The Cool Down Runner

 

 

Friday, January 9, 2015

Dopey Challenge – Race #2 – Minnie Mouse 10k

This morning let’s recap my second race in the Dopey Challenge – the Minnie Mouse 10k.

First, my alarm sounded at 3:31 AM. I rolled out of bed without any thoughts of hitting the snooze button. After a few housekeeping chores, I was headed for the buses which would take me over to EpCot.

Walking is the norm at Disney, and at 4:20 AM, I was walking into the runner’s village. With the temperatures being bit warmer yesterday and the wind only blowing at about 5 mph, most everyone was milling around.

It wasn’t too hard to find a place for me to lay down my towel and stretch out. I like to take a few minutes to relax before getting ready. There is one thing about Disney races. There is so much activity going on that time passes quickly.  I dropped by bag at baggage check and head ed for my starting corral.

Today, we had way more runners in corral “A” than yesterday. Walking to the starting line, I maneuvered my way up to the 3rd layer of runners from the starting line. This seemed to a nice spot, and I chatted with the runners around me.

With 30 seconds to go, I started taking some deep breathes. With no real good warm up, the first couple of miles were to be my warm up miles.

Just like the 5k everyone rushed off the starting line this morning. Most went sprinting out for about 200 meters and then abruptly slowed down. My guess most of these people just wanted their picture taken at the start. I found myself side stepping these runners so as to not run into them. Things started to sort about the ¾ of mile mark.

My first mile was 5:53 and my breathing was steady rather labored. We made a U-turn and headed back on a parallel road. Mile two passed in 5:53. Mile 3 went by in 5:48. Mile 4 was again in 5:48 as we entered EpCot. Most of mile 5 was around the board walk in 6:01. Mile 6 had us going back through EpCot – 5:56. It was during this mile that I found myself slipping and sliding. Disney washes their sidewalks down each night.  Racing flats on top of these wet sidewalks feels just like walking on ice.

After near disaster yesterday with the “unlight” pole, the Disney maintenance crew had fixed it with a new light by this morning.

With a clear sight to the finish line, I just maintain an even effort the rest of the way. With two big days coming, it is important to stay out of the red as much as possible.

 36:55 for 13 overall and first in the 50-55 age group. I will take this run any day.

I did my Dopey Challenge check-in and headed for baggage check.  Throw on some cloths and sprinted across the runners village for a picture with Dopey. I am doing the Dopey Challenage so I have to have a picture with Dopey. Then it was off to the buses for a quick ride back to the hotel. I was walking to my room at 7:01 AM and feeling a huge sense of accomplishment before most people were even starting their day.

9.3 miles down with a ½ and full marathon to go,

The Cool Down Runner  

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Dopey Challenge – Race #1 – Pluto 5k

My hands shook and my teeth chattered as the final seconds counted down to the start. Rising at 3:30, I had spent only a few minutes getting ready before heading up to catch a bus over to Epcot. This morning was the first of my 4 Disney races. The 5k race started at 6:15 AM.

Before letting the door shut behind me, I did one last check of the weather forecast. The temperature was hovering around 40 degrees (nice for running) but the wind was expected to be blowing which really “bites”. Yeah, at 21+ mph it definitely does (Not so nice).  I grabbed an extra layer of clothes and the “good ole handy dandy” trash bag (best wind coat around). All the time, hoping this would be enough.

I “chilled” pun intended here with all other runners. The cold was still seeping through even with 3 layers on. Several runners standing next to me were wearing nothing but shorts and a singlet. Oh, they had to be suffering.
We were herded into precorral pins and then led to the starting line. I ended up just one row back from the starting line more by choice than anything else. The runners on the starting line shielded the rest of us from the wind.
After the national anthem, the wheel chair athletes headed out. There was about a 2 minute gap and then they sent us off.
 I just settled into a nice comfortable pace. Having not been able to do my normal warm up, the first couple of miles would be my warm up.  6:10 for the first mile. Second mile was 5:50. Third mile was 5:45. Yes, I was starting to feel better. 18:55 for 3.20 miles, no, I didn't sprint to the finish.
The course looped around EpCot and took us around the World Show Case. As I felt better, I began to pick off a few people each mile.
The scenary even at night was very cool to see. They had the torches burning which surprising put off some serious heat. The footing was a little treacherous because it isn’t very well light. More than a few times, my feet found the tiny rises which my eyes didn’t catch.
After the race several of us were talking about the pole that was in the middle for the road coming to the finish. Just before the final 300 yard to the finish, the race exits from EpCot back into the parking lot. This section wasn’t very well lite, and there was the nice pole in the middle of our path. I just missed running into it. Hitting it would not have been a good thing.
I made a mental note to look for it tomorrow morning during the 10k.
So, I finished the race. Got my Dopey check-in complete. Headed for the baggage check. Oh, those clothes felt good.
Waited in line for the buses back to the hotel, and then watched as the bus driver took us on the scenic tour by Magic Kingdom. Funny how a 10 minute bus ride to the start in the morning turned into a 40 minute ride back to the hotel.  Such is life at Disney.
Now, I just have to recover and do it again tomorrow. This time twice as far.
 
Sharing my thoughts from the Happiest place on Earth,
The Cool Down Runner
 
 
 
 
 



My hands shook and my teeth chattered as the final seconds counted down to the start. Rising at 3:30, I spent a few minutes getting ready before heading up to catch a bus over to Epcot. This morning was the first of my 4 Disney races. The race started at 6:15 AM. Before leaving, I did one last check of the weather forecast. The temperature was hovering around 40 degrees (nice for running) but it was the wind that really “bites”. It was expected to be 21+ mph (Not so nice).  I grabbed an extra layer of clothes and the “good ole handy dandy” trash bag (best wind coat around). All the time, hoping this would be enough.

I “chilled” pun intended here with all other runners. The cold was still seeping through even with 3 layers on. Several runners stading next to me were wearing nothing but shorts and a singlet. Oh, they had to be suffering.

We were herded into corral pins and then led to the starting line. I ended up just one row back from the starting line more by choice than anything else. The runners on the starting line shielded the rest of us from the wind.

After the national anthem, the wheel chair athletes headed out. There was about a 2 minute gap and then they sent us off.

 I just settled into a nice comfortable pace. Having not been able to do my normal warm up, the first couple of miles would be my warm up.  6:10 for the first mile. Second mile was 5:50. Third mile was 5:45. Yes, starting to feel better.

The course looped around EpCot and took us around the World Show Case. As I felt better, I began to pick off a few people each mile.

The effects are very cool to see. They had the torches burning which surprising put off some heat. The footing is a little treacherous because it isn’t very well light. More than a few times, my feet found the tiny rises which my eyes didn’t catch.

After the race several of us were talking about the pole that was in the middle for the road coming to the finish. Just before the final 300 yard to the finish, the race exits from EpCot back into the parking lot. This section wasn’t very well lite, and there was the nice pole in the middle of our path. I just missed running into it. Hitting it would not have been a good thing.

I made a mental note to look for it tomorrow morning during the 10k.

So, I finished the race. Got my Dopey check-in complete. Headed for the baggage check. Oh, those clothes felt good.

Waited in line for the buses back to the hotel, and then watched as the bus driver took us on the scenic tour by Magic Kingdom. Funny how a 10 minute bus ride to the start in the morning turned into a 40 minute ride back to the hotel.  Such is life at Disney.

Now, I just have to recover and do it again tomorrow. This time twice as far.

 

Sharing this thoughts from the Happiest place on Earth,

The Cool Down Runner

 

 

 

 

 

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

10k Track Bucket List Item


With 4 races in 4 day coming up later this week, my mind should be totally focused on getting ready. But like most runners, cutting back on running means an abundance of both physical and mental energy.

I could point this energy in the direction of worrying, but this never seems to do me any good. Rather, what I have found works best for me is to start planning my next big adventure.

Track racing has become something that I have taken a keen interest the past couple of years. Running loops around a 400 meter track has it pluses and minuses. There are no hills but if there is a wind blowing, each lap can be downright ugly every 200 meters.

Anyway, I have never raced a 10k on a track so this is something that I would like to check off my bucket list this year. Searching the internet for track meets which have a 10k in the Charlotte i.e. NC area has yielded pretty much “nada”.

Just my luck.

So if I cannot find a meet, I guess I will just have to create a meet. Thinking ahead, I would love to do something in say May. Maybe make it a week day or Friday evening race. Before, anything certain can be made official; there is the tiny issue of finding a track to use. I plan to put out some feelers over the next couple of weeks. If luck is on myside, some AD will say “yes” and I will be in business.

If you are interested in joining me for a 10k race on the track, let me know.

 

Sharing thought at time,

The Cool Down Runner  

 

Monday, January 5, 2015

4 Races

Later this week I will be heading off to Disney for the Dopy Challenge. Through the years, I have often raced multiple races in the same weekend. I have even raced multiple times in the same day. The Dopy Challenge presents a unique running experience. Running 5k, 10k, ½ marathon, and full marathon on successive days will be the hardest of challenge in my running life.

Challenges are what make life so interesting, and I have spent a great deal of time thinking about my game plan. I don’t expect the 5k and 10k to be too bad. Most of us can handle this scenario. The ½ will definitely be harder but it should not totally exhaust my glycogen stores. If there is one race that worries me, this would be the marathon. Legs get tired. Especially, this is true of the hamstrings. Once they go, walking is the only alternative. Combine it with the possibility of bonking and the marathon could turn into a long day. It could happen but I hope not. I have a good nutritional plan prepared both during my down time and during the race. I feel confident that it will see me through.

Most of all, I just want to go enjoy it and have a good time.

Wish me luck,

 

The Cool Down Runner

Thursday, January 1, 2015

New Years’ Resolution Time


Every January first, we make resolutions in hopes that we will follow through on these self made promises and transform ourselves into something better than we were the previous year. I am all too familiar with this process myself.

I look at who I am today and who I would like to be tomorrow. Then I create a list of the traits that I would like to change about myself. Some years, I succeed in making these transformations into a habit. Other years, I struggle to keep them.  More than few instances I have failed at them.

What is important about making these resolutions is that we are striving to be better people. The only way to be a better person is to have a willingness to change and the resolve to make it happen.

Write down your resolutions. Put them on them on your refrigerator. Look at them every morning and remind yourself of the person that you want to become.

 

Happy New Year,

 

The Cool Down Runner