Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Smokin' in a Bad Way

Tuesday 4.28.09
AM: Pool workout
PM: core exercises, foam roller, stretch, ice
Woke up in front of 04:30 to swim in the pool before work. Getting out of bed was the most arduous part of the workout. Swam pretty much continuously for 40+ minutes. I have a feeling my swimming form is horrible, but I felt pretty good. The PM stuff I consider necessary maintenance.

Monday 4.27.09
AM: core exercises
PM: 8 1/4 miles in 60:42. Followed the run with 10 minutes of stick work and then ice.

I must have been going at a pretty slow pace for the first half of the run b/c I felt like I was not doggin' it for the last couple miles and I was just a shade under 7:00 pace. That's okay as I am still in the building a base phase. A good portion of the run covered the Aggie trails.

Saw a sad sight on the main trail: a kid with the babiest of baby faces was walking down the dirt road with a cigarette in his mouth and a bic lighter in his hand. The boy, and yes he was a boy, could not have been a day over 13. He was walking with another tweenie, and I would've guessed they were about to light up for the first time if the kid didn't look so "been here before" with the cancer stick ever so gingerly hanging for his lips. When we crossed paths, they made sure to avoid eye contact with me. A few strides after we passed each other, something compelled me to say, "Smoking will kill you." They turned but uttered no rebut. I had to say something. What I really wanted to do is pull the cigarette from his mouth and tell him to strap on a pair of sneakers and come run a 10k with me. But I didn't. I turned a corner and glanced back at the two boys. They were trying to light the cigarette in the wind. I hope their attempts failed.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

This Week in Running (TWIR): 4.20.09 to 4.26.09

Once I week, hopefully Sunday nights, I'm going to post a recap of this week in running, my spin on the wonderful This Week in Baseball that I grew up watching as a kid. (Is TWIB still on tv?)
So it goes:

I'm still building up back into shape after the petallar issues in my right knee. For the first time in 6 weeks I ran back-to-back days. I was psyched that my knee responded well to two back-to-back sequences. In addition I ran 5 days this week as opposed to 3. Despite these increases, my body handled it fine and felt like it could handle more. Next week my plan will be to maintain the 5 runs and increase the mileage into the low 50s. I also want to start shifting gears and try one fartlek run on grass. Up to this points, my pace has been relatively easy. I hope that everything will continue to go smoothly.

Essential Numbers:
46 3/4 miles in 5 runs

Sunday

Sunday 4.26.09
AM: core work and 7 1/4 miles in 50:00.
Hit the trails for a run that started off slow and easy and naturally progressed to a semi-respectable pace. Glad to see/feel that my body reacted well to the 13 I put up yesterday. No ill effects on today's run. Felt good and healthy for the most part. I'm still taking care of the petallar on the right knee. On a positive note, this was the fastest I've done this run and I've been doing it at least two Sundays a month for the last eight months. I never run this course hard, I always do it as an easy/recovery day, but it's still good to see that I'm getting back into shape a little bit.

Kerin Meets More People

Another exciting weekend in the life of KJ. This time she met an uncle, an aunt, a cousin, two new friends, and a baby. As you may already know, meeting new people means lots of new pictures. On the bottom right of the page is a link to everything KJ. You'll see lots of new photographs. To go right to the new ones, click on the Kerin8 album. I think that there's close to 40 pictures there. Posing for all those photos has tired out the little peanut. She's been a bit fussy this afternoon. We think that she put on her best "face" for all the visitors and is letting loose now that all her new friends have departed. Or maybe Squeeky McGee is just sad that they are gone. Come back soon!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Warm Weekend

Saturday 4.25.09
AM: 13 miles in 92:23.
About 40% of the run was on trails behind Walpole HS and then along powerlines. Hit the road early when the temperature was still in the fifties. You could feel it in the morning air that this was going to be one of the first warmer days of the spring. And it was. Pace felt easy. Keeping the reins on. Finished the run with the stick, lots of yard work, and double sessions of ice on the legs.

Friday 4.24.09
AM: Lifting Routine
Spent 80 minutes at the gym. Combo of free weights, nautilus, and body weight core exercises. I go to the gym once a week on my off day from running. The purpose is to strengthen the body and reduce the risk of injury.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Thursday's Run

Thursday 4.23.09
AM: 8 1/4 miles (estimate) in 60:54.
PM: Core work
The run was 100% on soft surfaces: the trails of Adams Farm. Another easy-paced, not pushing it day. Felt best at the end of the run. Halfway through it an unleashed dog came upon me to say "hi." I love it when a dog owner says, "Don't worry she won't bother you." Well, I got news for you: if your dog is jumping on me and running next to me clipping my legs, your dog is bothering me. Without hyperbole, I would say this happens to me at least once a month. This dog, however, was one of the nicer ones I've come across. Finished the run with ten minutes on the stick and 30 minutes of ice.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

So It Begins

I was going to commence this training (b)log on Marathon Monday (as previously noted) but with all the excitement about the race I decided to wait for a couple of days. So now officially begin my chronicles in training and racing. I hope you enjoy and don't suffer from ennui.

Tuesday 4.21.09
AM: Bike on indoor trainer for 70 minutes.
PM: core exercises
Easy training day. Biggest battle was boredom on the bicycle. Had the Globe's coverage of the Boston Marathon to keep me turning the wheel. Finished the bike off with working the legs with a foam roller for 30 minutes followed by icing for another 25.

Wednesday 4.22.09
AM: 10 (maybe a shade over) easy miles in 75:34. Ran the trails behind Walpole HS. Came upon the girls' track team. I'm hoping they were just doing a warmup b/c they were crawling. Toward the end of the run, I stopped to give a driver directions and forgot to click off my watch. No big deal there. Not pushing today, although I felt I could've gone longer and faster. The petallar is feeling better but I'm still babying it. Used the stick for 10 minutes post run and iced for 25.
PM: core exercises and foam roller on legs

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

John 10.10


As I walked by the elite 30k waterstop, I clicked off some pictures of the runners' water bottles and energy gels. Kara Goucher and Ryan Hall had the most decorative bottles, both going with a red, white, and blue theme. Hall, a deeply spiritual man, scrawled John 10:10 on his bottle. His inscription lead me to the Bible. Here's the verse: "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly." I found it interesting. Take it for what it's worth.
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Boston 09 Spectator Report

Another exciting Boston Marathon has come and gone. For the first time since Meb Keflezighi did it in 2006, Americans Ryan Hall and Kara Goucher each took third place overall. From my vantage point at the 20 mile mark, both looked strong. The problem, however, was that their competitors looked strong too. Especially the women, they seemed to be biding their time and waiting for the opportune moment to pounce. From her performances at the Boston Indoor Games et al, we know that Goucher has great speed. In an interview just seconds before the starting gun fired, Steve Burton asked her, "What's your strategy?" Her charismatic reply, "Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, sprint." She put herself in great position to enact that strategy, but Salina Kosgei of Kenya and Dire Tune of Ethiopia are great closers as well and had just a little more than the gritty, affable Goucher.

As for local women, Sheri Piers had an unbelievable race. Her time was 2:37.04. That's 6:00 pace for the 37 year old from Falmouth, ME. What's most impressive about Piers' performance is her negative split. She was one of the few non-elites to do that in the fierce headwind that gusted in the faces of the runners for the full 26/385. Heidi Westerling also ran well. The Olympic Marathon trialist ran 6:14 pace for a 2:43.11. One of the most exciting performances of the day came from a back of the packer. My sister Kathy came dangerously close to running her goal time of 4:00.00. 13 seconds close. She scored a major PR with her 4:00.13. I knew she was going after it, when, at mile 20, she unclasped her watch and flung it at me. "I can break 4 hours if I just stop looking at this thing," she told me between gasps of breath. "I'm running just over 9's, and I could bonk at any moment, but I'm going to try to keep it up." She had a focused aura about her despite my jogging next to her and frantically snapping photographs.

The men's race was more spread out. Ethiopian Deriba Merga made his move, and it didn't look like anybody was going to catch him. He was flying and his stride seemed to say, "There will be no repeat of Beijing today." Merga led much of the 2008 Olympic marathon before fading to 4th and finishing just out of reach of the podium. Hall pushed on through the rest of Comm Ave. and down Beacon, but Merga was just too strong on this day and gapped Hall by about a minute. At mile 20, one of America's favorite distance runners, 2008 Olympian Brian Sell was in a battle with Aussie Lee Troop. They were shoulder to shoulder cutting the tangents of Comm Ave and looking mean. Troop bested the future dentist (still Sell's plans?) by one spot as they came in 13th and 14th, 2:16.21 and 2:16.31.

Some local boys were also running fast through the communities of greater Boston. Leading the charge was New Balance Boston's Ryan Carrara. He was alone at 20, and that wind must've been killer without having a pack to break some of it. He ended up running 2:32.10 for a 5:48 pace. Not bad for a day's work. That was about the same pace Carrara ran in his Stu's 30k victory on March 1. Scott Leslie, who came in second at Stu's also had a good day in Boston yesterday. Two non-elite locals also faired well. Barrister Rob Sparkes ran 2:56.37 and John Pilkington posted a 3:58.14. I would've taken a few pictures of Sparkes, but he failed to tell me he was running.

So on a (head)windy, overcast day the Boston Marathon was again proved itself to be the granddaddy of them all. To see 60 photographs from the race, look to the top right of the page and click on the link.

As for me, I woke up at 10 of 6am and ran for 61 minutes on the trails of Adams Farm. A pretty small task in comparison to what the people above accomplished.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

4 Week Weigh-in

KJ took a trip to the doctor's this week to celebrate her one month birthday here on planet earth. She's getting to be a pudgy, chubby little thing. She's up to 8 lb 7 oz. That means she's been gaining about 1.5 oz a day. Needless to say, she likes to eat. So much so, in fact, that we've introduced the bottle to her. No problems there. Apparently the vehicle to the sustenance is of no consequence to her. If you'd like, there are some new pictures available for you to witness baby K's first experience with the bottle.

The happy little clam will be resting up this weekend in anticipation for her outing to the Boston Marathon. No, she won't be running; she'll just be a spectator for this one. I'm going to try to post some pictures from the marathon. This was originally supposed to be a running blog, so starting on Marathon Monday it'll have more of a running spin to it. Be known. Beware.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Love Bug Celebrates Easter

She's thought about it for a few days and after much deliberation, the love bug (see new Easter pictures for genesis of her latest nickname) has decided that she very much enjoyed her Easter outing. On Easter Sunday she set her current one day record for most holdings by people other than her parents. Speaking of the parents, we thank you all for exhausting Kerin. We had a good night of sleep Sunday evening and into Monday morning.

Kerin is four weeks old today. As Joe Castiglione (play-by-play voice of the Boston Red Sox) would say, "Can you believe it?"

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Mighty-Mite Meets Her PA G'Parents

After about three weeks on planet earth, baby K finally got to meet her other grandparents. It's been a fun and exhausting week for the little buggaboo. Seems like she discovered the mirror in her bassinet. She looks around for 10 minutes or so, exhausts herself, then falls into a peaceful malaise for an hour or two. Speaking of peaceful malaise, KJ had a sleeping contest with Grandpa. They duked it out for several hours, but Gramps took first prize. What put him over the top was his ability to sleep through the night without waking anybody up. There are about 30 new pictures in the lobster's newest album, Kerin6. Most of the pics feature the celestial beauty of our daughter; one picture, however, shows the other side of the coin. Check out the last pic in the album to witness what I'm talking about.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Sweets for the Sweet


Thanks to Tobey's mom for putting together this delicious creation. We'll be sure to enjoy it with large glasses of milk. Unfortunately for Kerin, she'll only be drinking the milk...Not much new news to report on here at the homestead. Just lots of eating, sleeping, and well you know the third item on that list.
Bonus points for you if you know from what Shakespeare play the post title originates.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Salt-n-Peppa

Kerin's winding down from her best weekend eva! She was the subject of many pictures and managed to get cuter by the minute. She had lots of visitors and enjoyed being held by every last one of them. Discovery of the day: KJ's outfit exactly matched our salt and pepper shakers. You can see a picture of the uncanny coincidence in the latest album, Kerin5, which I just posted a few minutes ago. That's right, 31 new pictures of the little jitterbug. Click of the link to the right to see some photojournalism of chickachicka's weekend. We know we're grossly overdoing it, but we don't care.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Little Acorns

More pictures of KJ are now available if you click on the link to your right. For those of you keeping score at home, the newest album is entitled "Kerin 4." She's getting more photogenic by the day, and her cheeks look like those of a foraging squirrel. Her eyes are open for longer bouts of time, and she even smiles occasionally. Capturing one of those slight smiles with a camera is not an easy task, however. Jen spent a good 15 minutes with camera in hand waiting to snap a smiling shot of the little clam. Alas, the wily little grim came just after she turned the camera off. Rest assured (rest--ha--what's rest?), we'll keep taking pictures.