Showing posts from 2017

Being Looked Up To

Today I ran in the annual Jingle Bell Dash (formerly the Jingle Dash).  It's a community event that is a 5k course with two loops for people who want to do a 10k.  Typically there only a handful of 10k runners and a (relatively) large number of 5k runners. I've done this race every year since 2013 and I've come in first place three out of those five times (I was second in 2015 and 18th in 2013.  It sounds more impressive than it is.  Don't get me wrong, I'm proud of my performance.  I broke 40 minutes in the 10k for the first time in this race.  However, with the field for the 10k only being about 30 deep, it is not exactly elite competition. This year I went out a little harder than I expected to.  This is a tough race for constraining yourself because the course starts downhill and there are a lot of kids that like to go out really fast.  But after half a mile there were only two people ahead of me, and a mile after that it was me and one other kid who kept

Giant Acorn International Triathlon 2017

My wife had the great news to share with my several months ago that one of her good high school friends got engaged to be married and was going to have a bachelorette party.  The only problem was that it was an out of town party and it was on the same day as the Giant Acorn triathlon that I had done the past two years.  I told her it wouldn't be an issue since I had apparently forgotten to sign up, or at least I couldn't find my registration confirmation for the race, and now that she had plans, I just wouldn't sign up. On Wednesday I got an email from the event giving me the pre-race logistics.  "That's funny," I thought, "Did I actually sign up for this race?"  So I searched for myself on the event site and saw that I had a bib number assigned to me.  My first reaction was, "How can I get out of doing this race?"  I had just started a 10k training plan and had, as a matter of fact, done a my second hard workout of the week; an anti-t

South Riding Triathlon 2017

The South Riding Triathlon has always been an "A" race for me.  I've done it every year since 2011 and I use it as a measuring stick to see how far I've progressed.  I know every turn of every part of this race by heart.  In fact, according to Strava, I have run the run portion of the Tri 100 times. And because of that, I felt pretty nonchalant in the days leading up to the race.  It almost seemed like I didn't even realize it was on my calendar.  The Thursday before the Sunday race, I thought maybe I should taper a bit so I cut back the intensity of my workouts, watching Moana during my Thursday trainer ride, doing an easy 5 miles on Friday morning, and then a stretch-out hour swim on Saturday. The day before the race is when I started to get my pre-race jitters.  That day, in addition to all of the normal race prep stuff I needed to do, I also had to drop The Girl off at her grandparents' house.  They are always gracious and willing to help which is a

Being a Dad


Injured Again

I don't know when it happened or how it happened, but I can tell you why it happened.  Once again, my pattelar tendon on my right knee is acting up.  The last time this happened was early 2015.  I can pinpoint exactly when it happened by looking at my yearly mileage progression charts. Yea, that looks like an injury That was when I was ramping up for my first marathon.  I had laid down the base mileage as part of my training plan and was getting into the speed/strength workouts.  I had just completed my first interval training session on a treadmill and when I got off I knew something was wrong - my knee felt alien.  I thought I could run through it (a couple of times, as you can tell from the chart) but I eventually went to a physical therapist for it and sidelined myself for essentially five months. My pain this time is not nearly as bad as it was back then, and the onset of the pain was not nearly as sudden, so I'm hoping for a quicker recovery time.  After realizin

Here We Go Again

My marathon is in the past and it's time to start looking forward to my next race, a half marathon in beautiful Loudoun county.  I decided to do this race pretty recently.  I felt pretty good that based on my marathon performance (well, the first half of it, anyway), that I'd crush a half marathon. That's still TBD, as I have quite a few hurdles in front of me.  First, I took off two weeks from running.  I was biking and swimming during that time, but my first day running again I was quickly brought back down to reality and reminded why there was a mandatory 2-week cool off period built into my training plan.  Suffice to say, it was rough.  But I kept going - no hard runs, and nothing long.  Easy runs at no set pace, just based on feel, from anywhere between three and seven miles.  I've been doing that for three weeks now and I finally feel normal again when I run.  My endurance wasn't an issue (especially given the pace of my runs getting back into it), but t

Well, That's Over With

On Saturday March 11, 2017, I woke up at 4:30am, 15 minutes before my alarm was set to go off.  I already had my clothes for the Rock 'n Roll DC Marathon picked out and The Girl was spending the night at my in-laws' house and I knew exactly what I was going to eat for breakfast.  My top priority at that point was getting some coffee in me as quickly as possible so that I could, uhm, clear any blockages that may have hindered me during the race.  I didn't exactly leave myself much time as I was planning on departing at 5:30am. I made my coffee and ate my breakfast.  I woke up The Wife and she ate her breakfast and before I knew it, we were in the car and on our way to downtown DC.  The car ride was only about 35 minutes - amazing the difference in commute times at 5:30 on a weekend vs any other time, ever.  I had my GPS taking us directly to the drop off and we got there without issue.  The drop off was about a third of a mile from the start line, but I got there with

More Marathon Training

It finally happened.  I guess I shouldn't be surprised, nearly doubling my weekly mileage is way above the 10% rule that everybody touts.  I suffered my first injury of this training cycle.  I got myself a shin splint. I've battled shin splints for year.  When I was training for my first half marathon, the farthest that I ran was six miles and I had shin splints that were so painful I could barely walk.  Since then, shin splints have been my excuse for not regularly running.  It wasn't until I re-jiggered my stride a few years ago to increase my cadence that I was finally able to train without fear of injury. But alas, after one of my tempo runs I was sore.  I hoped I could ignore it and that it was just temporary so I ran my easy run the next day and the soreness only go worse.  So I decided to take some time off from running.  I planned on hopping on the bike as a way of losing as little fitness as possible, but I managed to catch a nasty 24 hour bug that prevented me

Marathon Training

I've never actually run a marathon.  I've done a handful of half marathons, and I've signed up for a marathon and even collected the t-shirt at the race expo for that race, but still the longest I've ever run is a hair over 13.1 miles. I was signed up to run the Rock 'N Roll DC Marathon in March of 2015.  I even had a nice book that laid out an entire training plan for me.  It was my first time actually training, as opposed to just going out for a run.  I had a really good baseline fitness, so I felt good about the plan.  I based my plan on a 39:47 10k I had run in December of 2014.  I was about two weeks into my structured plan - the first week of doing an actual workout when I got injured.  I was doing Speed 12x400m @1:30 on a treadmill at my office gym before work.  I felt good doing the workout, but as soon as I stopped running, I had a throbbing pain in my knee.  I ran once more that week, then took a week off, then I tried to string together a few consecutiv