Sunday, March 27, 2011


The winner of my worst giveaway ever is Harold. The Redhead selected his name out of my dirty sweat-soaked baseball hat. It seems her hand was guided by the running gods after he protested how the lady bloggers have all the good giveaways. Sadly, he may have a point. If there was such a thing as a 'cup' for runners, I'd do a weekly giveaway to help even the Karmic score.

And now begins the taper. I generally eat healthy during my training, but during taper I am an extra good boy. No candy, no chips, no fries (American or French). More veggies and less donuts. It is the worst three weeks of my life. If it were not for Taco Bell Fridays, I may as well give up on life. Why do I do it? Simple: because I think it helps me on marathon day (and regardless of whether it does or does not physically--the moral boost is enough) and because of the Week of Gluttony that follows.

During my WoG after Grand Rapids, I sat down at an all-you-can-eat-pizza-buffet when it opened, and left when it closed. I even took a short nap between rounds. It was beautiful.

Yep, I'll do pretty much anything to fit into that summer bikini that is PRing at Boston in a little over three weeks.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Worst Giveaway Ever

For reasons not really worth discussing right now, Adidas sent me a free shirt. It is a great shirt. I know, because I already have the exact one. Even the same color. So, I'm giving it away. If you would like a blue Mens medium Adidas shirt, just leave me a comment about the worst running gift you've ever received.*

I know. I know. A giveaway that excludes so many based on gender? Well, I'm sorry ladies, they didn't send me a free Womens shirt. But there has to be someone you know and love who may like this gift and therefore warrants your participation.

Winner will be randomly drawn out of a hat by the Redhead.


Running related: this is my last week before taper begins. Which means this is my last long run of 20M+. I'm nervous. I'm planning on 23M. The last two 20M runs have been average (read, I fell apart during the last seven miles). I'd like to have a decent run before taper.

Additionally, I'm just not sure if I should go back to the 'Hills of Death' course, or run the equally challenging 'Tomato Hill' run. If you want, feel free to influence me. A vote for either course will count as an entry if you are lucky enough to have never received some running related piece of crap.

*To past winners of my giveaways. If you have the audacity to suggest that anything I sent you qualifies I will laugh and then send spoiled cookies to your home...I still have your address.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Terrible Tummy

I was set to have an excellent 10M run. Goal was sub 70 min. I ended up doing 7.5 in 75 minutes.

The first three miles flew by and was enjoying the great spring temps. And yet, somewhere around mile two I noticed I wasn't focusing on my breathing or my tempo. Instead, I was focusing on one thing in particular: bowel lock-down. After three and a half amazing miles of running, I had to stop and walk or else very bad things were going to happen.

Longest four miles ever. The drawback of running in the wilderness. At one point my stomach growled to loudly that I scared a bear.

You may not wish to know such things...but all runners have to deal with this at some point. It is an inevitable as a Facts of Life Reunion.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A Long Way Gone

Memoirs of a Runner

A rough long run. Long runs are not supposed to be easy. The past two have been difficult. First the HoD taught me a little lesson. This past weekend I made the mistake to trusting the weatherperson and what the weather was supposed to be in three hours, and not dress for what the weather actually was. If one of the cardinal rules of running is ‘dress for the actual weather,’ I sinned. It was such a perfect morning, sunny with little wind and high 30s. But the person on the TV swore the weather would get super cloudy and windy and start to rain/snow as the temps drop to the mid 20s before noon.

And even a really strong-paced long run means several hours outside. So, I overdressed. And Nature, that sweet but fickle temptress, kept the sun and highs temps around. Therefore, by mile 5 I was already deeply regretting my clothing choice. And, sadly, with a Smartwool undershirt and a long sleeve shirt on top, I felt layering down was not an option. Excuses:

  • Route does not take me within ½ mile of home until end
  • Would require stopping and *gasp* stopping Garmin to rearrange shirts
Defense of aforementioned excuses. It would have meant tying my Smartwool shirt about my waist and wearing it that way for 15 or so miles and it jostles up and down and up and down and up and down and up and down and…uggg so annoying. Or, it would mean taking said shirt off and sticking it into a mailbox or tying around a street sign with the hope that nobody wanders by and takes your rather expensive piece of running equipment—or wonders why there is a sweaty shirt in with their Saturday mail.

Also, I hate to stop my Garmin on a long run. If I have to use the bathroom on a long run, I don’t stop the Garmin. If I have to stop and wait for a long light, I typically don’t stop the Garmin. And, I would not have allowed myself to stop my Garmin for my poor wardrobe choices.
But the third excuse and driving force to not do anything about being too warm was Ego. Yep, Ego. Ego tells me not to stop the Garmin…because there is no ‘justifiable’ pause of your time during a race. And Ego says you should be a good enough runner to run through it. I’m sure Ego would say the same thing even if I went out on a 20M long run in the dog days of summer and wore full winter gear. Sadly, when Ego wins I rarely emerge victorious as well…I’m working on it.

So, I only have one 20M more long run left before Boston. Two more weeks until taper. And I’m feeling about the same did before several prior marathons…somewhat optimistic. Somewhat concerned. Too bad Ego is shouting at the top of his lungs about “Done deal” and “All good, where are the Girl Scout Cookies?”

Friday, March 4, 2011

Winner Wha?!?

On Thursday the Chicago Marathon sold out. What does that mean? Well, other than the fact that 45,000 crazy people will be spitting, farting, burping, sweating, sending snot to the ground (and hopefully that is all)* through the great city of Chicago while it is an unseasonably warm 85 degrees.

It means that Tahoegirl over at got miles? was the winner of my 'how long till Chicago Marathon sells out' contest. The rules were closest without going over and her 672 hours guess was closest to the 741 actual sellout time. Tahoegirl is a cookie loving runner who was awesome enough to come out and support the Redhead and myself at our Grand Rapids races last October. But her awesomeness isn't why she won...or is it?!? And what did she win?

She got two Chocolate Chip Peanut Crunch Cliff Bars, two Chocolate Crunch Macrobars. An amphipod to keep her save during night runs, a pair of PhD Smartwool socks, and a Yankz shoelace replacement. Congrats again.

Also, to my fellow runner who I almost ran over at 8pm this evening. Do not wear all black and run at night. Rocking only long black pants, long black shirt, black hat, only two thin reflective lines on the bottom of his pants, and running in the street is a great way for someone to hit you with a car...even if they are a fellow runner and would feel really bad.

* Interesting story...I was going to use the word 'snoting' but I decided I would look it up before I did so. A quick Google search will reveal why I decided to rephrase.