Thursday, July 25, 2013

They Arrived

The FedEx guy had a quick knock on the door, and there they were - two pairs of Brooks Ghost 5 sneakers.

Brooks Ghost 5
At about 500 miles a pair, I should be good until about next February.  The good news for me, I found a brand and model that really works for me a few years back at a local running store (where they evaluate your pronation, gait, etc...), so I stick with it.  Each year the manufacturer comes out with a new model, Ghost 3, Ghost 4, Ghost 5, Ghost 6...  and new they typically cost about $110.  However, if you look hard enough, pre-race Expos, online, and such, you can typically come across a better price especially on prior year models.  These were $72.00 a pair.

As far as hobbies go, and I do count distance walking as one of mine, this is really the only 'equipment' one actually needs.  The one thing I have read and have been told consistently - you need good foot support.  It does make sense.

I found these through an online Amazon store on the Marathon Walking Site (disclaimer - this is not my site but I do go there for a lot of information about distance walking).  

Saturday, July 20, 2013

16 Weeks to Chickamauga

In preparation for Chickamuaga Marathon, did a 10 mile modified LSD this morning at Suwanee Greenway.

My Saturdays have been alternating between increasing LSDs and a modified 10 mile LSDs.  My increasing LSDs increase by a mile every other week - last week did 16 miles, next week will do 17 miles and so on until I reach 22 miles.  The modified LSD is a 10 miler with a few twists.  For today's I did a one mile warm up, 4 miles at race pace, and finished the last 5 miles at an easy pace.

Modified 10 mile LSD - walking
My race pace for the 4 miles was 12:24 per mile.  If I could actually maintain that pace for the entire marathon, my finish time would be 5 hours 25 minutes (ish).  That's why I still have 16 weeks to prepare for this!

The really nice thing about the Greenway - during summer mornings, it's mostly shade!  :)  It makes a huge difference.  Although the majority of today's miles were not trail, I did my warm up mile on the trail portion:

I really like the trail parts of the Greenway.  One of the nice things about being on the trail a little later than usual like I was today, I was not the first person to do that section.  Whenever I'm the first person of the day on that trail I usually need a stick to wave in front of me as overnight spiders are actively building their webs - I hate walking into webs!  Today - did not walk into any webs.  : )

Sunday, July 14, 2013

MOOC Starts Tomorrow, Join Me

Even though I am huge believer that TANSTAAFL (there ain't no such thing as a free lunch) is alive and well, the better part of six decades on the planet will do that to you, maybe it's not totally true.  Tomorrow is the first day of the MOOC I recently signed up for: Nutrition and Physical Activity for Health, and it's free!

I think it is common knowledge that we should eat better and exercise, but I also think that it is easier said than done.  I want to know more.  Their course description "This course will provide a coherent, understandable look at the evidence on how nutrition and physical activity impact health through lower morbidity, longevity, and quality of life" was what convinced me to sign up.

The course is provided by The University of Pittsburgh via Coursera, requires 3-5 hours per week, and is 6 weeks long.  If you are interested in the subject matter, join me.  You can learn more about the the course, see the syllabus, and watch a 3 minute video by one of the professors by clicking here.

Does this mean I have to root for Pitt over Georgia Tech on 11/2/2013???

Friday, July 12, 2013

Sometimes I Do Get Lucky

In the big picture of life, this is a small thing.  But it did make my day.

With all the walking, I drink a lot of water and even more so in the summer.  Depending on where you live, you may need a water filtration system.  We do.  Since ours was leaking, we needed a new filtered water pitcher, the old one, a Brita, served us well for quite a while.

So I'm at the grocery store (probably not the best place to buy one of these) and I happen to see two models: a 10 cup pitcher for $38.99 and an 8 cup for $34.99.   Holy cow!  I had no idea they cost that much.  Forget about it - no way am I spending that much.

A few days pass and I'm curious enough to google these filtered water pitchers to see prices.  Yep, upper 20s and into the 30s seems to be the going price.

Next time at the grocery store I noticed the 8 cup Brita filtered water pitcher is $8.00 off.  So instead of 34.99, it was 26.99.  Since my mind had come up to speed on pricing these things, in the cart it went.  At the register I'm watching as they scanned it in - it came up as 34.99.   I mentioned to the clerk that it should have rung up as 26.99 so he sends someone to look at the pricing on the shelf.  They report back saying it should be 26.99 so the clerk subtracts 34.99 from the bill but does not add any amount back to it.  The store's policy is if it comes up  a wrong price, the item is free - no charge!  Thanks Publix!

And since it was free, the water really does seem to taste even better!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Race 38 - Virtual Race for Medals4Mettle: A Suburban Hike

I recently came across a different type of race - a virtual race.  A virtual race is basically a fundraiser that you can do at anytime (usually within a date range) and anywhere.  So for my 38th race I did the Swagtastic Virtual Race for Medals4Mettle.  They had three distance choices: 5K, 10K, or half marathon.  I signed up for the half marathon.

Medals4Mettle is an organization that presents donated finisher's medals from the completion of a marathon, half marathon, or triathlon to children and adults fighting debilitating illnesses who might not be able to run a race, but are in a race of their own just to continue to live their life.

Originally my plan was to do a half marathon hike up on the Appalachian Trail for this but the weather did not cooperate.  Instead I decided to simply do a half marathon suburban hike.  I was out the door before 7:00 AM heading east.  The goal was to go 6.5 miles out, turn around and go back.  I've experienced this before and have said it many times - you really do not see many things even if you have driven down a road hundreds of times.  There is just something nice about slowing down and really seeing your surroundings.

The only challenge (besides making my legs walk 13.1 miles) was - my footpod stop working at 2.34 miles.  So I really did not know how far I should go.  Ended up doing more of a lollipop route instead of an out and back guessing at the mileage.  When I got home retraced the route in my truck.  It was only 11 miles.  Went back out and did the last 2 miles.

It's quite different doing a virtual race, but it really does support something good.

Just a few pics from the route:

Berries!  everywhere
At the corner of Peachtree & Old Peachtree
New Life Baptist Church
Red Barn
Gated Community
Coming Soon
Sugarloaf Plaza
Home Depot on the 4th of July
Look who is coming to town
Crops look good

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

19 Weeks to Chickamauga

So in about 19 weeks I'll be doing the Chickamauga Marathon.  I paid for it, which actually I think is part of the psychology of doing these things - signing up far in advance.  You know the old, sure seemed like a good idea at the time.  I could back out of it, just not do it, not show up,...  But since I laid my money down, I will do it.  I'm not going to throw the money away.

For various reasons, it was just difficult to do what I had planned last week in preparing for Chickamauga.  The worse was Saturday morning, I was up early, which is normal, looking at the schedule - it called for a 14 mile walk.  I did not want to do that - just didn't feel like doing it.  So in my brain, it was sort of like a ping pong ball going back and forth from don't do it to do it.   The do it won probably because I paid for it : )

Sometimes it just comes down to doing it the Nike way...

Their slogan is actually pretty good.  Hey that reminds me, it's almost time for a new pair of running shoes.  I usually buy Brooks (Ghost), maybe I'll try Nike this time.

So far this week, motivation has been better.