Saturday, August 24, 2013

Thought I Was Not Competitive

When I do these 100 races (38 so far), trust me, there is no chance of "winning" any of them.  Which is fine by me.  Heck, I'm not even running these races, I'm walking them!  For me, completing a race, is winning.  Many people have said the race is really inside of you, the race is your body against your mind, physical vs. mental.  I tend to agree with that.  Regardless, that 1st Place trophy for (fill in the blank) race will not be on my mantle.

Race organizers have added a dimension to this though, age category 1st, 2nd, 3rd place awards.  So they will have female & male typically in five year increments e.g. 30-34, 35-40,...  But even with that, winning or even placing in my age category is not the cards for me.

However, I recently signed up to do a half marathon (13.1 miles) this Fall and they have a walking category, you actually have to register as a walker or a runner.   Hmmm...  So when I registered I did sign up for the walking category - and they do have the 1st, 2nd, 3rd place awards for male, female overall in the walking category.  So all of a sudden, this little competition thing starts coming into my thought process - not even sure where this came from : )

So not only have I altered my training for this, I've also gone back through the race results for prior years for the walking division of this race and "scoped' out the competition!  Where did this come from???

This morning did 10 fast miles, walking, at Suwanee Greenway.  I altered half mile brisk walk with half mile fast walk.  Completed the 10 miles in 1:59:07, a pace of 11:54 per mile.  It was a good workout.

As usual though, I always do have the camera with me, and during one of the brisk walk segments saw this incredible spider web out of the corner of my eye.  I actually paused my watch and got a few pics of it:

The way the sun hit it, it looked like a circle floating in the air.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

When We Retire - Alaska!

In preparation for Chickamauga Marathon, yesterday called for a 3 hour walk, the goal was to stay moving on my feet for 3 hours.  Walks that long can and do get boring.  One of the things I do to help with this is to pick a topic and try to focus on just that topic for the duration.  Sometimes it works sometimes it does not.  Yesterday's topic - going to Alaska after we retire.

It's not that we want to move to Alaska, we just want to go there for summers, to work.  I suppose it might sound odd to "retire" and then go somewhere to "work", but right now that is part of our plan.

We've been to Alaska twice, both times via cruise ships (my journal entries from first trip).  For us, cruising to Alaska seemed to be a good sampler package approach.  With the exceptions of Anchorage and Seward, the Alaskan cities we got visit were in Southeast Alaska: Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan, Sitka.  Our hope is to get a seasonal job supporting the cruise ship tourist industry in one of these cities.  We'll see.  But in the mean time, it is fun to think about and it does help the time pass on a long walk!

Some of the pics (and reasons why we want to go back for an extended time):

Tracy Arm Fjord & Sawyer Glacier
Mendenhall Glacier

Davidson Glacier

Tracy Arm Fjord
30 lb King Salmon off the coast of Sitka
So for now the plan is to go on another cruise the year before we retire and besides enjoying Alaska again, talk with merchants & businesses to try to line something up for the following summer.

If you've never been to Alaska, I highly recommend it.

Friday, August 9, 2013

I Will Be an ASS Until I Retire

It's true.

I can already see my sister's (who follows via email) response to this "don't worry Scotty, you won't change a bit in retirement".     : )

Let me explain...

After spending many years in the corporate world and having many titles I made a switch over to academia.  I was actually quite lucky to land a tenure track teaching position in my late forties. However after teaching college freshman & sophomore classes for four years, I wanted to do something else.  But I really did not want to go back to the corporate world so I switched jobs at the college to work on their online course system.

This has been a good work experience.  It is not that I have given up on my career, I have decided that I'm just not climbing the ladder any  longer, I am satisfied where I am.  There is actually quite a lot of peace when you are not focusing on or even thinking about that next job.

However, about a year ago, they did some renaming of titles at the college.  So, although nothing else changed in what I did on a day to day basis, I was given a new title: Academic Systems Specialist (ASS).  So with any luck, I will be an ASS until I retire!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

New Goal: 1000 Days of Walking

When I first started walking it was for health reasons.  My motivation was simple - to become more healthy.  My measurement was the various blood tests during the annual physical and to lose a few lbs.  After meeting those goals I started slacking off.  To combat this, I created the complete 100 races and walk 10,000 miles goals.  My personal "reward" for meeting these goals will be retirement, from work. Sure, these goals are artificial and really do not mean much at all, but so far they seem to be working for keeping me motivated.

As arbitrary as it sounds, one day while out on a walk the thought process started -  I have a goal for 100 (races) and 10,000 (miles), but I don't have anything for 1,000.  So I came up with adding a goal of going for a walk 1,000 day in a row.

I started this goal about two weeks ago  (only 985 days to go  : )

Walking can be addictive, it's odd but there are times when I really 'need' a walk!  I suppose if you're going to be addicted to something, this is a pretty good thing to be addicted to.  It (walking) did not start out this way, but somewhere along the way it morphed into all of this.

If you are on the cusp for starting a walking program, or just curious of the health benefits, watch the video below.  George Halvorson, Chairman & CEO of Kaiser Permanente talks about the the health benefits of walking 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week.

How can something so simple be so beneficial?