What can I say? I love to run. I've run 4 full marathons and 6 halfs. But I love God more and I'm determined to run this race of life for Him to receive the ultimate prize of Heaven. I'd like to share my thoughts with you. You can agree or disagree. Comment or don't. You can read or not read. But it's here if you want it. Enjoy! .

Monday, March 29, 2010

Fried Ipod for Sale


I posted last week that I would run 14 yesterday "rain or shine". Since I skipped last week (on accident), I vowed to run the 14 this week. I knew it was going to rain. Every forecast called for it. I heard it during the night. I knew it was going to be a rough morning.

I set my alarm for 4:30 (not 5:30 like last week - checked it several times). When it went off, I woke up ready to run. I was hoping and praying that the rain had tapered off. I immediately went to the front door and looked outside. No such luck. Pouring rain. I stood at the door for a good minute contemplating. A huge part of me just doesn't want to run in the rain. It's a lot harder. The rain hitting your face. Your soaking clothes weighing you down. Wet shoes. Avoiding puddles. I wasn't sure if I was ready for it. For a few seconds I decided to put it off, go back to bed, and try to do it this morning (Monday) instead. But then I remembered what I had put in the post. Rain or Shine. I knew I had to run or I would let down my 3 readers. I'd also let myself down. I had to do it.

I have gotten very dependent on my Ipod. Maybe that's bad, but I really enjoy listening to it while I run. And I've run with it in the rain before. I always keep it in my pocket so it doesn't get soaked, but it's definitely gotten wet before. I figured it could take a little rain. But just to be safe, I put it in a ziploc bag before putting it in my pocket. I figured it would be perfectly fine. I was wrong.

About 4 miles in, it just stopped. I took it out of my pocket and tried to turn it back on. Wouldn't work. I figured it was maybe out of battery, although I had charged it the night before. I was bummed but continued running figuring it would work later. I tried to turn it on again around mile 10 or so. This was probably my mistake. I probably should have left it off and maybe could've salvaged it. When I tried to turn it on, it came on but was acting funny. It said it was charging which it clearly wasn't. And nothing would play. I could scroll to any song but none would work. It was also making a weird static noise in my ears. So I turned it off, still in the ziploc, and decided to wait until I got home. It hasn't come on since. I think it's dead. I searched Google for wet Ipod and all signs point to the strong possibility that it shorted out. I still don't understand. It didn't get that wet in that bag. It's definitely gotten wetter before. Maybe it was its time. But I'm very sad. I use that thing all the time. I'm probably going to bite the bullet, pull out some savings and buy a new one this weekend. I may get a nano since it's a little cheaper than what I had. But I need one. One thing's for sure, if I do get a new one, I won't run with it if there's even a hint of rain. I can't imagine running 16 next weekend without it. If anyone wants to contribute to the "buy a poor teacher a new Ipod fund," let me know.

Carter and I ran 2 1/2 yesterday. His longest. There was a tough hill on the route that I had forgotten about so our time was a little slower (22:57 - 9:10 pace) but still good. His first 5K is in less than 2 weeks.

Hope everyone has a good week. Don't shower with your Ipod. That's my tip of the week.

Keep runnin',

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Possum in a Bag


I didn't do a long run this week. I intended to. I was on the street doing it when I realized I wasn't going to do it. Say what? Here's the story. I decided that I was going to do 14 Sunday morning. I've been doing 12 for the last few months but I decided that since the half marathon is coming up in about a month, I wanted to up it a little to get ready. So I had planned 14. I set my alarm for 5:30 and went to bed early so I could get enough sleep. It was hard getting up that early. It was Spring Break last week and I slept most mornings until 7:30 or 8. But I jumped right up at 5:30, ready to do the 14. I started out and was actually excited about it. The weather was perfect and I felt great. I got about a half mile down the road when it hit me. I think I was thinking about times and what time I wanted to get for this 14 and what time I would get home. I have to be home by 6:45 to start getting ready for church b/c we go to early service. That's when it hit me. I can't run 14 miles in an hour and 15 minutes!!!! If I could, I'd have to seriously think about changing my career!! What did I do wrong? That's when I realized I'd gotten up an hour too late. I was supposed to get up at 4:30. Not 5:30. My brain had gone to sleep before my body the night before and I set my alarm for the wrong time. I then had to figure out what to do. Do I run it anyways and be late for church? I knew that Susan would have started to worry about me when I didn't come back until they were about to leave. Do I stop and do it later?? I just decided to give up the long run for the week and I would run 6 miles instead. About the time I decided that, I looked down and was literally inches away from stepping on a life possum. He had his head in a McDonalds sack and didn't see or hear me until I screamed a little. Actually, I think I said "WHOA!!" (or maybe something else) and he popped his little head out and just stared at me. So I was kindof disappointed to just do the 6 and it's really gotten me behind this week but I guess it's ok to take a week off of the long runs every once in a while. I WILL do 14 this Sunday, rain or shine!

By the way, I got done with my 6 weeks of pushup training last week. I had followed the program on hundredpushups.com and supposedly would be able to do 100 pushups after I finished. I was pumped to try my 100 on Saturday. All I have to say is, 100 PUSHUPS MY FOOT!! I could only manage 60 before I collapsed on the floor. Not sure what happened but the program was a bust. I meant to keep trying this week but I haven't kept up with it. Oh well. You win some. You lose some.

(LATER UPDATE - I tried pushups again tonight (March 25) and was able to do 80 so I'm getting closer. I think I'll keep trying.)

Carter's race is in 2 weeks. Very exciting. Training is going well. I've joined Dailymile whatever that is. I'm still figuring it all out but feel free to search for me there. Click here.

Have a great weekend and

Keep runnin',

Friday, March 19, 2010

What's That Shiny Thing in the Sky?


I know. I know. It's the sun. It's just been so long since we've seen it here in Nashville. But I've been running in it this week and it's different. Don't get me wrong. I'm glad Spring is finally here. All that snow and cold was getting old, but I gotta say....I know I'm going to miss it as far as running goes. I just love running in cold weather so much more than running in hot. The last few days have been okay but it's only been in the 60's. And I can feel it - it's definitely harder. I know when those 70's, 80's, and 90's roll around soon, it's gonna be tough. But I'm not complaining. At least I can run in much less clothes.

Carter and I did 2 miles yesterday. His first 5K is coming up in about 3 weeks. The last time we did 2 miles, we did 18 something - close to 19 min. which we were happy about. Yesterday, I decided to push it a little more. He struggled a little with the heat but said he was never in pain. I honestly thought we were going to be slower so I was shocked when I stopped the watch at 17:51. For 2 miles!! That's under 9 per mile. For my 8 year old doing his first 5K ever and his first real timed race ever, that's unbelievable. Needless to say he and I were thrilled. I still think we can do 28 min. or less on race day. That my tentative goal. We'll see how the next 3 weeks of training go. He's doing outstanding and I'm still loving running with him.

Speaking of Carter, he and his best friend Carter...yep, 2 Carters...made a video yesterday with the help of yours truly. It's on YouTube and below. Check it out if you want.

We had a lot of fun making it. Carter K did pretty well for his video debut. Well that's about all for now. I just ran 5 miles and am done for the week. I'll rest tomorrow. It's been a while since I've rested on Saturday but with Spring Break being this week, it's been a lot easier to get a run in each day. That's 33 for the week. I'm going to try and do 14 Sunday instead of 12 so as to start training a little harder for the 1/2 marathon coming up at the end of April.

Hope everyone has a good weekend. Don't forget to.....

Keep runnin',

Saturday, March 13, 2010

I Huffed and I Puffed (Race Report)


Well, it's over. The 15K relay in Sheffield, AL was this morning. The race is officially called the Huff 'N Puff 15K race and relay. Nate, myself, and Andrea (in that order) participated in the relay portion. So what follows is the race report:

We got to Florence, AL last night and checked into our room at the Hampton Inn. It was like a mini-getaway for Susan and I so we were excited just to get to stay in a hotel by ourselves. Not that we didn't miss our boys...a little :) Nate, Andrea and their friend Ladona arrived soon after and we went to dinner together at a local steakhouse. The meal was great and it was nice to just be with friends in a new place. We got back to the hotel around 8:30 or so and I crashed. I think I made it through about 15 min. of TV before my eyes starting getting really heavy. I was out by 9. We slept until 7, got up, showered, ate the hotel breakfast, and headed to the race. We checked in, got our bibs and realized we still had almost an hour until the start. So Susan and I got into our car and decided to drive my leg of the relay. It was a pretty easy course from what I could see for my part with one exception. Around mile 2 of my 3.1 was a huge hill. It wasn't too long, but it was pretty steep. I had been warned but I knew it wouldn't be easy. I had Susan just drive me to my start location. They had buses that would take you, but I decided I'd rather be in my car. I made sure that was ok with the race director. He was fine with it. We got to my start location (the 5K point) around 8:45 with the race scheduled to start at 9. Nate would be our first leg.

As I already mentioned, we had 66 min. as our time goal. This was a 7 min pace and we were hoping we could do it. The weather was great. It had rained last night and was raining when we got up, but the rain was very light at the start and kept coming and going. Nate's PR before today was somewhere around 25:30 so I knew to expect him around that time. I was shocked when I saw him coming down the street in the 24th minute. I knew he was going to have a new PR and he did (25:17). Way to go, Nate! He handed me the baton and I was off. I started out fast, but I knew that's what I needed to do. I was trying to make up some ground because we were in fourth place in the relay division at that point. I also knew I would have to slow down at that hill so I wanted to run fast at the start since most of it was downhill. I passed several people before I got to the hill including two of the three relay teams in front of us. When I got to the hill, I did the best I could but it was brutal. It hurt and I definitely slowed down. Eventually, it evened out again and my pace picked back up. My legs were fine the entire time, but my lungs were on fire and I was breathing hard. I knew I would be thrilled to break my PR (19:55) but my goal was just to get close to it, in the low 20's. I finally hit the straight-away and could see Andrea up ahead, our third leg. I came in and handed the baton off to her. My official time was 19:58, so I missed my PR by 4 seconds. I feel pretty sure that without that hill I would've had it, but I'm happy. I feel sure I can break it one day. Andrea had a great third leg. She definitely had the toughest leg as far as hills go. She had several but she came in at 20:03 which was outstanding! So our overall time was 65:18 meaning we beat our goal.

We ended up in first place for our division (co-ed) out of 10 teams, and 2nd overall. The only relay team that beat us was a father and son. The father ran the 1st and 3rd legs and the son ran the 2nd. They ended with a time of 63:45 so it was pretty close. They both did great, especially the dad. But we were happy to win our division. We got medals and enjoyed the awards ceremony and FOOD afterwards.

Overall, it was a great day and I loved being part of this team. I would love to do something like this again at some point. I would also be interested in doing the 15K alone. I think I could've placed. Nate and Andrea's friend Ladona placed first in her division running the 15K. She did very well!

So there's the report. Looking now to our next race...Carter's first 5K in less than a month. Can't wait for that one. More to come. Hope everyone has a great new week and a wonderful Spring Break!

Keep runnin',

Thursday, March 11, 2010

It's Gotta be Walt!


Well, my next race is in 2 days. I am very excited to be running this 15K relay. If nothing else, it’s just fun to get away and experience a new race in a new place. Hey, that rhymed. This will be my first race in another state since High School. I talked to Andrea the other night. She’s leg 3 of our three-runner team. She said she’d like to see us get somewhere around 66 minutes. Last year’s winning time for the relay division was 66:12 so I’d be thrilled with 66. I’m really hoping to get somewhere around 20 min. myself, but again, having never run or even seen the course, it’s hard to know what to expect. The forecast calls for a 30% chance of rain with the temps in the high forties to low fifties. So it should be great weather if that holds out. We’ll go up Friday night and hopefully check out the course at some point. The race is at 9AM Saturday morning.

Last week, I posted a hidden mickey for everyone to check out and I told you that I had sent all these to the Hidden Mickey website and none were posted. This week, I was excited to find out that one of ours got posted in the "Questionable Hidden Mickeys" section. It is a picture of a mural that is at the entrance to "Spaceship Earth" (a.k.a. the big ball) at Epcot. Last year when we went, Susan swore she saw something in the flame of a torch on the poster. I told her I just didn't see it. This year when we went in October, she showed me again and this time I did see it. It's pretty obvious. Not sure why I didn't see it the first time. It definitely looks like the side profile of a man with a mustache. And we figure it has to be Walt Disney himself. Why not? The Hidden Mickey guy obviously doesn't think it's Walt Disney b/c he didn't even mention it in the post. Check out the post here. I've written him and asked him to add a comments and/or vote section so people can weigh in. Check it out and let me know here what you think. It has to be something for sure and we choose to believe it's Walt Disney. Who knows?

Carter and I did 1 3/4 miles yesterday. His longest distance ever. We were shooting for 16 min. That would keep us on our 27-28 min pace for the 5K. I was thrilled to look down after stopping the watch and see 15:53. He was so excited too. He is doing an amazing job! I love running with him. I know I've said that a lot but I really do. We'll run again today, I think. Not sure how far.

I'll post Sat. night with results and a race report.

Keep runnin',


Sunday, March 7, 2010

Anyone Seen My Heel?


Today was a great day! I ran 12 miles this morning and the weather was perfect. Cool when I began but warming up nicely as I was finishing. At one point, I passed a house that was being built. I noticed that the windows were reflecting a bright red color. I honestly thought the house was on fire for a split second. But I quickly realized it was a reflection of the sunrise. I looked the other way and saw an amazing, awesome, God-sent sunrise. The run was great, but that made it even better.

I ran 2 more miles in the afternoon - 1 1/2 of them with Carter. We ran it in 13:28 which is a minute and a half improvement over the last time we timed that distance. My goal for him is 28 min. or less for this 5K in April. I really think he can do it. He is doing so well and he's finally reached that point where running is starting to be fun and isn't that hard anymore, especially the shorter distances. It's so much fun and an absolute blessing to be training him and running with him. This family 5K was a great idea.

Ok, now to the title. I bought new shoes a little over a month ago. I got Mizuno Wave Runners. I love the feel of them. They are very light on my feet and they fit my feet great. I have had Mizunos before and have enjoyed each pair, but for some reason, the heel on my left shoe has already worn nearly off. I don't think I've ever had a pair wear down so quickly. So I can't say I'm impressed this time with the Mizunos. I hate that b/c I really do like how they feel and especially how light they are. But I might as well be running my long runs by hopping on my left heel. Now I'm sure I run weird. I know I pronate so I'm sure I run in a way to damage the heel, but I still think there has to be some shoes that will last longer than a month. I can't afford new shoes every month. Plus, my heels are FINALLY starting to feel better after a long time of pain. I can wake up in the morning now and walk on them with no pain. And I'm so afraid that my heels are going to start hurting again but I cannot go get new shoes, not yet. If anyone reading has any suggestions on better shoes with stronger heels, let me know.

Hope everyone has a good week and as always...

Keep runnin',

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Huff 'N Puff Update


I found out some more info. about the Huff 'N Puff 15K relay I'm running in a week from this Saturday. I am running the 2nd of 3 legs. We do carry a baton that we'll have to hand off. The first leg which my friend Nate is running has several small hills. My leg has one big hill and Andrea will be running the third leg which has 2 big hills. The whole course is rolling which won't bother me much, hopefully. Buses will take us to our starting points. Nate and I will ride the bus to the finish after our legs and hopefully get to see Andrea finishing. After the race, we'll go back and get cleaned up to come back to the awards ceremony. I'm really excited about this race and will definitely post a report that evening if possible.

Celebrating my 10th anniversary tonight with dinner and a movie. First date night in a while. Happy Anniversary to my wonderful wife!

Keep runnin',

Monday, March 1, 2010

Is it Mickey or Not??


My next race is a week from Saturday. The Huff 'N Puff relay in Florence, AL. It's gonna be a little one night get-a-way for the wife and me. The first in a while. So I'm looking forward to that just as much (actually more) than the race. We haven't taken a trip just the two of us in years. Even though it's only one night, it should be a lot of fun. I still don't know a whole lot about the race. My wife asked me the other day if I was ready and I just shrugged the shoulders and said, "I guess so." 5K's aren't too big of a deal anymore. I'll just run the best I can and it'll be over before I know it. I'll try to get some more details about the course and post again next week.

I'm co-hosting the Runner's Roundtable Podcast again tomorrow night. I did this back in December and had a blast. We are again talking with Joe Henderson from "Marathon and Beyond" magazine. Feel free to tune in and listen. You can go to the website for directions on how to listen and comment. The chatroom is a lot of fun. I'm looking forward to hosting with Mike and Lesley again.

Finally, I thought I'd do a few posts on Hidden Mickeys. You know I'm a huge Disney fan, but I really enjoy looking for Hidden Mickeys each time we are there. I (with the help of my lovely wife) found one and submitted it which got put in the book. It even has my name in the credits which I guess means I'm a published author, right? Anyways, I thought I found a few more on our last trip. I submitted them, but haven't heard squat back from Steve Barrett who does the book. He emailed and said he would check them out but I haven't heard anything. I know that some are a stretch but I'm sure that at least 1-2 of them are good. I'll show you one today and the others in future posts. This one was taken in the queue line for Dinosaur - the ride. I think this one is. It's hard to see but I think part of his scales make a classic Mickey head. I've circled it. You can click on it to make it bigger. Feel free to comment and let me know what you think. Is it a hidden Mickey or not?

Keep runnin',