Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Old Favorites

Sunday and Monday I revisited two old training "favorites" of mine.

Sunday: 10-miler

I haven't done a 10-miler in several months and I always feel like I accomplished something when my mileage goes double digits.

It was supposed to be an easy run and I was supposed to be on my feet for two hours. Check and check.

You read it all over Runner's World that a lot of runners go too hard on easy days and I was certainly one of them before I started following directions on heart rate zone training. For the life of me, I wanted to avoid doing a run over a 10 minute mile average with the result that no matter which distance I ran, I always ran around a 10 minute mile average. Not much faster and not much slower.

Right now, I try to follow the instructions on each of my runs to the "T". If it says easy than I run/jog easy even if that means that I end up with a 12 minute mile for my run. If it says tempo, then I do tempo. Intervals are intervals etc.

Sure, sometimes I feel like I lost the little speed that I gained earlier this year, but then I have to remind myself to have trust in the plan.... and that everything is going to fall into place eventually... especially if the temps finally decide to take it easier on us! ;-)

Monday: Up and Over Paris Mountain

Yesterday, Terry and I set out to climb up the steep side of Paris Mtn on Altamont Road a.k.a. "Back Of Paris" (if that doesn't give me some hits from Google, then I don't know what will! ;-) on our bikes.

It's a two mile ride to the bottom and then a little over two mile climb up and then rolling down to the other side. Then a lot of rolling hills and some real sucky hills through the neighborhood back to the house. The whole trip isn't even 14 miles and it's over 2,000 feet of climbing. The route is rough on the bikes for sure, but it also is great hill climbing training and a practice in descending, a skill that needs a lot of improvement for me. If I really go through with it and sign up for Assault on Marion/Mtn Mitchell in 2011, then this is going to be my training route... and around and around and around.

What we rode yesterday, was also a major chunk of the Paris Mountain Road Race 20K that the Greenville Track Club puts on every year in December... And right then and there, I decided that I won't ever try running that race. It's rough enough on the bike, but running it? Seriously?
So long!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Healthy Living Blogs

This is directly from the page "Healthy Living Blogs - About".

"Healthy Living Blogs was designed to enhance the already tight-knit, supportive community of the healthy living blog world. An amazingly strong connection is formed when like-minded individuals come together to encourage one another, and that’s exactly what HLB is here to accomplish. Find new blogs that blow you away. Find new inspiration. Find people in your geographic area to meet and encourage and support you in real life.
I’ve frequently been asked, “What kind of blogs can be part of HLB?” The answer is simple; any blog which focuses on health. This includes a wide variety of “types” of blogs. While bloggers who post multiple times a day, sharing everything they eat and do are more than welcome, so is everyone else. You can blog three tims a week or three times a day, you can blog only fitness tips, only healthy recipes, or everything about your quest to lose weight. You can reach beyond nutrition and fitness to explore other areas of health. You can have five readers or 500,000 readers. HLB is open for everyone, bloggers and readers alike, who care about health.
HLB was the brain-child of Lindsey who writes about her personal healthy living journey back to school to become an R.D. over at Sound Eats."
This is a great resource. I especially like, that you can look for blogs by area!!

To be included in the blog listings, simply send an email with the following information to healthylivingblogs@gmail.com:
  • Email subject line: MEMBERS
  • Your name (please let me know if you prefer to go by first name, first and last, or however you prefer to be known on the Internet)
  • Your blog name and URL
  • Your twitter username, if you have it
  • Your location (if you prefer not to disclose this information for privacy’s sake, that is completely understandable. We’ll simply include your blog listing in the a-z listing, not by location, too)
  • Any specific labels (i.e. vegan, gluten-free, weight loss, running, etc.)
Happy Sunday everyone!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Another Picture Filler Post

I found some pictures online from last weekend's sprint tri in Laurens.

Enjoy, while I digest my lunch to a point that I can head out for my planned two hour run. That's what I get for being lazy this morning and not getting my butt in gear.

setting up transition

top middle, I think I just got the swim course explained

listening to the race director

testing the water, after the first wave was off

hanging out in the water - chit-chatting

about to come in T2

I guess, I am getting my breath

No pics running or from the finish line... Oh well.

Friday, August 27, 2010

1-Year Bloggerversary

Today is my one year bloggerversary.

When I started out last year, I wasn't even sure if I am going to be able and willing to keep this up. And even though I don't think that blogging is a life changing experience for me, it certainly is an outlet that I enjoy having and I am willing to spend some my free time on.

Thanks for reading along and commenting. On to another year!


Last night, I met a couple of friends to run the Paris Mountain trails. Last year, this was a weekly get-together and right now, we trying to find back into a groove doing this on a more regular basis again.

We did a modification of the Paris Mtn 11K trail race course bringing the distance to pretty much exactly six miles.

It was Terry, Alex (relay team member) and Stacy (tri training buddy) as well as two dogs. The boys took off at the front with the doggies and Stacy and I chatted the whole time. We haven't seen each other in a couple of weeks and had to catch up. It was her first trail run ever and it was a lot of fun to show her the trails. After the run, she said that she really enjoyed herself and the change of pace and scenery that trail running brings. Since it started thundering, when we were at the top parking lot, we decided to run back on the road vs the trail. It's pretty much the same distance down, but you are faster on the road and the weather looked like it's going to go crazy any second now. So we actually, "just" did 4 miles on trails and the rest on the road, but we certainly did the most difficult portion of the course on trails.

The weather behaved until we were back at the cars. Perfect timing!

Oh and when I got back, my car looked like this.

Fortunately, the guy that did that left a note with his phone number.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Getting the Hang on Pre-Race Nutrition

Disclaimer: I am not a nutritionist, just sharing my personal experiences!

I learned a lesson or two over the last couple of months racing...

One of the things I seemed to get better at is the pre-race nutrition. Only very little queasy stomach going lately and no major disasters.

Anyways, here is my list of things to AVOID/ REDUCE starting at least two days before a race. If it's a longer event (going on 2 hours and over), I do those steps even earlier in the week.
  • Reduce fiber at least two days before race day.
  • No raw vegetables.
  • Reduce dairy intake.
  • No greasy foods.
  • No alcohol.
  • No diet coke.
  • No sweets.
Out of that list, the diet coke is probably the hardest part for me... And yes, I am fully aware that I don't have any business drinking diet sodas to start with.

Looking at it now, this is pretty straight forward... Tell me again, why I have to write this down? Oh yes, because I once thought that running a 5-mile race on donuts and greasy pizza would be a good idea... Thinking of this day makes my eye twitch.

What do you avoid before race day to keep the tummy happy?


Neck Update: Things have been much better today. Not quite back to normal yet, but much better. I even got to do my run. It was my first tempo run in MONTHS and I am happy about it.... Goody goody.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Pain In The Neck and A New Trail Half

Pain In The Neck

I was so concerned about making sure not to ramp up my running mileage too quickly in order to avoid the repeat of the ITB mess of last year... And knock on wood, so far no problems.

And yet... I didn't train yesterday and won't do anything today either. I even skipped my 10 minutes a day core workout because of shooting pain down my neck, shoulder and back.

This is not so unusual, since I seem to get something like this every couple of months (not related to the shoulder hick-up) and normally it's done after a day of rest, a bengay patch and a good night's sleep. Only, this morning I woke up and it hurt even more. Actually, I woke up several times during the night because it hurt.

So once I was at work, I slapped on a heating pad (I have those in my desk drawer for emergencies) and then called my chiropractor and fortunately she was able to squeeze me in at 4.30pm.

When I told my boss that I'll have to leave early for the appointment and that it is my neck again, he suggested that we might have to consider a new spot for me in the office. The problem is that I sit right under one of the A/C vents and the air hits me on my left and all my problems always seem to be on my left.

I feel a little better now after my appointment, but it's not really good. And doc told me, that it's quite possible that I am going to tense up again. In the meantime, I am following my prescribed sequence of ice-off-heat-off-ice-off-heat and biofreeze.

Hopefully, I will be back tomorrow with the run that was planned for today. Keep your fingers crossed for me.


A New Trail Half

November 13th, 8.30AM

"The inaugural Camp Croft Half Marathon is the first half marathon of its kind in the upstate of South Carolina and will take place in beautiful Camp Croft State Park. This challenging race will consist almost entirely of single and double track trails. All proceeds from the race will benefit Camp Croft State Park and Friends of Croft, an organization created to bring assistance and awareness to this jewel of Spartanburg County."

Registration is USD 35 before September 1st and USD 45 after that.

Isn't this tempting? Decisions, decisions, decisions.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Race Report: 2010 Laurens YMCA Sprint Triathlon

300 yards open water swim - 12.3 mile bike - 3.1 mile run

Results (based on chip time):

Swim 7m53s (pace 2:38m/100y) OA 35/100 AG 2/7 GR 8/39
T1 1m56s
Bike 41m14s (speed 17.9 mph) OA 37/100 AG 4/7 GR 11/39
T2 1m08s
Run 30m57s (pace 9:59 min/mile) OA 70/100 AG 6/7 GR 25/39

TOTAL 1h 23m 09s OA 58/100 AG 5/7 GR 19/39

OA= overall, AG= age group, GR= gender rank


Slept like a rock... That's a victory in and of itself. Maybe, just maybe I am getting used to this racing thing and don't go crazy each and every time anymore.

I am a natural planer, so of course I had the address in my GPS and was trusting it to get me right where I needed to be and in time... I got there at 6.40am (race start was 7.30am) and other than one other car was no soul at the Laurens YMCA. Turns out, that the triathlon wasn't at the Y, but at a location 8 miles down the road. I called a friend of mine that I knew is familiar with the area and also doing the race and he was able to give me directions right away. The people in the other car figured it out in the meantime too and so I followed them. Once we were at the location, all the parking spots close to transition were already filled up and I had to park a little away from everything. I grabbed all my gear and hauled it down close to transition and then hit the porta-potty line. It was 7am then. Awesome! 30 minutes time to pick up my packet, get body marked and set-up transition. It's amazing how much of a routine I have established by now and I got everything done in time. I didn't even freak out when I let out all the air on my back tire (by accident) and wasn't able to get air back in*. My friend became my life saver for the second time that day and was able to organize a pump and pump up my tires. We were at the shore line of Lake Rabon with minutes to spare, but then the start was delayed a little.

*I had this issue before and this was the straw that broke the camel's back. I am going buy myself a good pump ASAP!


We started in waves. The boys went first and the girls followed them 3 minutes later. I spent those 3 minutes chatting with a girl that I know from other races. Made the time fly. This was only my second wave start/ open water swim in a triathlon. Also, this group was much bigger from what I experienced at AOC. I lined myself up to the very outside (and away from the swimming direction) and once we got going, I realized that this was a mistake. Swimming is my strong suit and I have no business hiding myself at the start to then have to swim over everybody. Live and learn. Of course, the reasoning was, not to get into the human washing machine, but by having to swim around and over people, I couldn't avoid this anyways. The water actually felt refreshing compared to the training triathlon I did a couple of weeks ago in the same lake. It was over before it really started and I felt good getting out of the water.

Two notes about my swim time: The race was advertised as a 300 yard swim, but it was closer to a 400 yard swim. Also, there was no timing mat at the swim exit, so the run up to transition is also included in the swim time.


Decent transition. Nothing noteworthy.


In all the rush, I still remembered to put the bike into a small gear before racking it. It's all about routine! ;-)

Hopped on the bike and was off. I didn't quite expect for the bike to be this hilly, but the route was really pretty and they had an amazing number of volunteers on the course securing all the intersections and giving directions. Even though the course had a couple of turns, it really never was an issue. I was making good progress on the bike and half way through I decided to push it as hard as I can and just use for the run whatever is left. I passed a ton of people and got passed a couple of times, but mostly it was guys and girls that weren't in my age group. Maybe three miles before T2, a girl in my age group passed me and I really wanted to stay close to her, but she just pedaled away from me like it was nothing. The best moment during the bike was getting chased by a group of horses (behind a fence). The way in and of the Lake Rabon lake access area had two nice hills that we had to climb back up to get back into transition. Getting off the bike, I felt good and was really happy with it.


I really have to try to get T2 under 1 minute. I lost some time getting the Garmin off the bike, even with the quick release. The problem was not the quick release, but that I am too short to reach over the rack properly.


Those hills that I had to climb up getting into transition. Well, I wasn't done with them quite yet. I would have to conquer them two more times before crossing the finish line. The run felt alright, but the hills really got to me. I was also fighting with a headache at this point. It was funny, I woke up this morning with a headache, but it was gone after breakfast and then back on the run. There was also some cramping going on around my left shoulder blade. Just didn't feel too awesome at that point. Around mile two, things started to feel a little better and I was able to pull away from a girl, I first followed and then we ran next to each other for a while. Needless to say, that I was passed by the dozen, but what's new.

The crowd support around the finish line was awesome, because it was right next to a picnic shelter with all the food, so all the finishers stayed around and cheered everyone in.... Up to the last person... She got a super extra loud round of applause! This tri community really rocks!


"On Your Mark Sports" did the timing of the event and the results were up in no time. After crossing the finish line, I grabbed something to eat and talked to some friends and then walked over to the results and already saw my name listed.

After that, I cleaned up a little (no showers on location, that was a little bummer) and then waited for the awards. I didn't expect to place, since I knew that there were at least two girls ahead of me that I saw and was sure there were a couple more that I didn't see.

Once the awards were over, I was about to head to the car, but then ran into one of the volunteers (I met her during the AOC course previews) that helps organizing the whole series. She just tore down the transition area and we started chatting a little and I ended up helping to break the racks down.


This race officially concluded my triathlon season and now the focus will be on running for the next couple of months. I will still bike and swim (once shoulder is back normal) for cross training and to not to have to start from scratch next season. All of the races that I did this year were part of the Upstate Y Tri Series and I am planning on joining them next year for at least six races (in order to qualify for series ranking).

Friday, August 20, 2010

Save Us From Ourselves! ;-)

Today's topic is somewhat related to yesterday's in the terms of, that as athletes (sometimes, I still feel funny to use that word to describe me) we have to listen to our bodies. And you all know, how I love me some training plan, but following a plan to the "T" without taking other factors into consideration is just not going to work out. Sometimes, life happens and interferes with the training, sometimes weather conditions dictate to slow down or just bag a workout and sometimes your body is going to tell you that it's sore, it's tired and had enough.

Athletes are often referred to as "Type A" personalities* and things like accepting that life happens, and weather happens and your body is only that of an human too, is not always easy for a type a.

*Here is a portion of the wikipedia explanation (to read the whole thing, pls click on the link above): Type A individuals can be described as impatient, time-conscious, controlling, concerned about their status, highly competitive, ambitious, business-like, aggressive, having difficulty relaxing. They are often high-achieving workaholics who multi-task, drive themselves with deadlines, and are unhappy about delays. Because of these characteristics, Type A individuals are often described as "stress junkies."

I don't think I mentioned it before, but my left shoulder is giving me some trouble lately. Nothing major and especially now that tri season is almost over (last tri for me tomorrow), I didn't really worry about it. I haven't been in the water since AOC, but also thought that I should be able to squeeze out 300 yards tomorrow no matter what. And going to the pool probably would just have aggravated the area, so I just skipped it.

This was a looong introduction for my actual point:

So early this week, I get an e-mail from Coach Katie telling us that there is a 2 mile swim in Lake Murray in September. No swimming in over two weeks and a sore shoulder? Of course a 2 mile swim sounds like a fabulous idea! I almost signed up for that puppy and probably would have, if I hadn't noticed before that the Blue Ridge Relay is on the same day.

I mentioned it one of my tri buddies and all she wrote back was: "It's good when we save ourselves from ourselves!"

True that. True that.

On a similar note: Lindsay over at Chasing The Kenyans mentioned in today's post that there is a half marathon in Spartanburg on Oct 9th. While Brian at Start Slow Than Taper mentioned a trail half marathon in Charlotte Sep 25th.

You see where this is going? I know, that I am planning on doing the Spinx Half end of October and really want to focus on it... but you know.... a dress rehearsal never hurts right? ;-)

Happy weekend everyone!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Perfect Hill Is A Challenge

You know that I am on a plan... A training plan that is. I enjoy the fact that I don't have to come up with stuff to torture me, somebody else is doing that job for me (currently on a generic half marathon plan from BT) and I am just left with the execution. It makes me do things, that I normally wouldn't... If I would design my own training plan it would look something like this: Monday 5ish Miles, Wednesday 7ish Miles, Saturday 10ish Miles... No information on how fast, what HR zone, running hills or on flats, intervals. I am not very creative in coming up with things to torture myself...

My current pet peeve on the training plan are the hill repeats.

So far I had two of those on the plan and the basically look the same:
  • 15 minute easy warm-up
  • Number x2 minutes hill repeats working into heart rate zone 4 and rest on the downhill
  • 15 minute easy cool-down
On Sunday I had 10 x2' and yesterday 12 x2' and even though I haven't looked into the future weeks, I assume that's is going to go up from there with even more repeats. It's labeled as "strength building" workouts and I believe that this is exactly what that kind of run is doing: making you stronger and that's certainly not a bad thing.

Those hill repeats are rough, but I found that my biggest challenge is to fine the perfect hill... And to be perfect, it needs to fulfill the following requirements:
  • at least 0.25 miles long, to make sure that I most certainly won't be able to reach the top during the 2 minute time span
  • a gradual hill that has about the same incline all the way up
  • not a lot of traffic (since I will be spending a lot of time on the same piece of road)
  • no stray or playful dogs
  • preferably shaded (see above: spending a lot of time there)
On Sunday's run I had an idea of the hill on which I would do the repeats, but I got lazy and didn't measure the distance beforehand. This way I ended up with two hills that were too short until finally finding one that worked. Even though the grade of that hill wasn't too practical, because it flattened out quite some at the end.

Yesterday I came prepared! I picked and measured the hill the night before. My warm-up would be running to that hill from the house the long way. I ended up having more of 30 warm-up, because it was the "long" way (maybe 2.5 miles) and I was super slow. The temperatures and the humidity really took a toll on me and I was supposed to take it easy.

I did my first hill repeat and I knew right away that this one is going to be perfect until I noticed the lady reading in her yard with her goofy golden retriever. The first time, the dog didn't do anything, but on my second repeat he sprinted out the yard, wanting to play with me and I knew that the remaining 10 repeats are not going to happen here... For the lady's and my sanity's sake. I finished my second repeat up and then kept running up the hill (instead of going back down) in order to find another hill. The next one I picked out didn't work at all. Way too short and it actually led into a private community, that -I guess- I shouldn't even run into. After the 3rd repeat was a fail, I kept on running. Soon I ran down a hill and thought that this could possibly work. When I hit the bottom of the hill, I turned around and started repeat #4. This was a very good alternative to my original pick and I kept on doing my repeats #4 through #8 and then my stomach revolted. Fortunately, I was only half a mile from the house, so I did a little pit stop there. For a while, I just thought to call it a day, but then my stubbornness won and I headed back out, but I stayed close to the house doing the remaining four repeats on a hill just up the road... It was alright to finish there, but traffic on that road is a little more than all the other spots I ran that day and there was another puppy running along with me for a while wanting to play.

My legs felt good and heavy by the time I was finally done. This morning, I also felt really tight and had a couple of sore spots around my knees on my calves. I was supposed to do an easy run this morning, but bagged the thing and jumped on the elliptical instead, to give the legs a little rest. Low and behold, on my last 15 minutes on the elliptical the old buddy plantar f made a short appearance in my left foot... Did I stop my workout early? Of course not... In the end, I guess I do like to torture myself. Hopefully, the massage that I had after work has taken care of this... PLEASE!

So long! ;-)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Addition to Paris Mtn 7K Race Report

So, there have been tidbits of wrong information on yesterday's race report and one of my FB friends straightened me out and there was also a good discussion about oblivious people. ;-)

Here you go:

I am slacking a little in the blogging department, but hopefully, I will be able to share some training related items in the next couple of days.

So long! ;-)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Race Report: 2010 XTERRA Paris Mountain Trails 7K

Results (based on Guntime):
50:00 (11:29 min per mile average)
Overall 172/240

After taking off a complete week after AOC and my first week of half marathon training, I was once again toeing a start line. This time for the last race of the 2010 XTERRA series.

The night before, I had my usual Friday night chiropractor appointment and then we headed out for some sushi. Since sushi seems to become more and more my perfect pre-race food, I stick to it. After coming home from the restaurant, I just felt achy and tired and was asleep by 8.30pm and slept right through the night until the alarm went off at 6am. I guess, I desperately needed some sleep.

Pre-Race Routine

Took it easy in the morning. I was out of the bed early enough to take a lot of time getting ready... And then wait until the husband was ready too. He wanted to come along, but not do the race... Just be my groupie and maybe (yeah right maybe!) get a "little" run in. We also took the doggy along, so she can get some exercise too... She ended up running over four miles on Terry's "little" run. Of course faster than I can run that distance, but she's half greyhound and I need an excuse.

Once at Paris Mountain, I picked up my package, did another pit stop (number 574 for the day) and then headed to the start. Karma wanted to check out the Lake and so I'll let her. This way, I was far away from the other runners and their nervous energy. While waiting around, we also ran into Chris, my captain (oh captain) from the Blue Ridge Relay team.

The Course

I have never done this race before and also didn't know exactly which trails are going to be used. We started off at Picnic Shelter #1, then made a loop around the upper parking lot (apparently, we needed that extra mileage to make the race a 7K), then turned right on Mountain Creek, straight at Sulphur, followed Sulphur to the left, crossing the road and heading into the woods again, climbed up to the dam, then took a right (not doing the steep steep part of Sulphur) on the trail which I forgot the name. Once we hit the road again, we took a left heading up the road and then turned right onto Sulphur again running back (all downhill from there) on Sulphur and Mountain Creek to the finish.

The Run

I started out in the back of the pack, right were I belong and took it easy until we hit Mountain Creek Trail. Once on the trail, I started passing people and got passed a couple of times myself.

I never expected to kill this race, but once I was out there, I felt good the whole time. I was working hard, but I wasn't going crazy.

Let's insert a short rant in here, shall we? Using an MP3 player during a race is a personal choice, especially if the race organization doesn't restrict the use, BUT a trail race is NOT the place to choose using music. During a trail race, people actually have to communicate to each other, because space for passing is limited. So when I am breathing down your next for the last 5 minutes and then say "on your left" and you still don't move anywhere... that doesn't fly! I had to practically yell at the girl for her to finally hear me. I think it would make sense to not allow earphones on trail races. Rant over!

The trail that connected the dam to the road (the one I forgot the name) is really nice and wide and fairly flat. That was a good area to just run! There was one girl that somehow ended up on that trail without doing the dam (there is a shortcut)... I am sure she didn't do it on purpose, but the look on her face when she realized that she has to turn around and the climb up somewhere else was disheartening!

If I remember correctly, the only time I walked was on the road section before it connected back to Sulphur. This area was so steep and I felt like I won't loose a lot of time by (power) walking this short piece.. But I would loose more time powering up the hill and then be too exhausted to try to really push in on the downhills. I think that worked out alright. Oh and of course I walked the steps up the dam.... That's a no brainer! ;-)

The downhill is of course fun, especially if it's not super steep. I made good pace the whole way back and once I hit the amphitheater, I put it into high gear for the remaining quarter mile and was able to pass several runners. Stopped the clock at 50 minutes... Not bad.

Even though they had a photographer on the finish line, I wasn't able to locate any pictures of me.... Sad. My backup photographer was out on his "little" run and just got back to the finish line area when I was already done.

Post Race

I picked up a water bottle and half a bagel (that I shared with Ms. Wonder Dog) and then we hightailed it out of park since we had plans to meet up with friends in the Gaston NC for the day.

So far the XTERRA series results haven't been posted yet and normally it takes them a couple of months to get that done... Not that I have big expectations on that, just to let you know.

I am already signed up for the first race of the 2011 series which is going to be in November of this year and an 11K. Seriously, I am already looking forward to that one, even though it's a week after my half marathon... It's going to be fun!

So long! ;-)

Sunday, August 15, 2010

A Little Picture Filler Post OR

addition to AOC race report!

Sooo..... It's Sunday afternoon and all the chores are completed for today.... pretty much anyways. Got my long run out of the way early already so now it's time to kick back and hmmmm I guess write a race report?

The 7K yesterday was good. No stellar performance, but solid and no blood this time! ;-) My time was 50 minutes flat and I ended up 172 out of 140 overall. I take it and yes, I am working on the race report, but that probably is going to be another couple of days depending on how fast they are going to post the pictures that were taken all along the race course.

Speaking of pictures.... Since I don't have any content otherwise, let's look at some pictures from the Assault on Cherokee shall we? ;-)

warming up at the swim start

getting out of the water

just after exiting T1, glasses in my mouth instead of on my face still at this point

about to cross the finish line

at the awards

and here, I am just looking silly ;-)

So long! ;-)

Friday, August 13, 2010


I logged my 1h yoga practice from this morning in my online training log and then noticed that this is my first yoga entry in 2010... I shouldn't be surprised, that I feel super tight ALL THE TIME!

After most of my workouts, I do a 5 to 10 minute stretch, but seriously, that just doesn't cut it.

So right here and right now I vow to go to the Sunrise Yoga class every Friday morning for the remainder of the year! Seriously, I don't know why I am such a wuss about this. I get up at 5am most mornings anyways. So one morning more or less really doesn't matter anymore - right?

To keep my accountable, I designed a nifty spreadsheet:


Oh joy it's Friday!

Tomorrow, I will do the Paris Mountain Trail 7K and then will add on some miles to get to my 1h10m long run for that day. I haven't been running on trails since the 15K back in May, but I am also not planning on going crazy... Big factor is also going to be the temps and humidity... I expect major suckage. This is the last race of the local XTERRA series and I am currently ranked second for my age group (consistency over speed sometimes), but 1st will only be possible, if nobody else in my age group shows up... Not realistic.

And here is some cuteness for the weekend:

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Are You Ready For The Blue Ridge?

Yesterday, somebody asked me if I was ready for the Blue Ridge Relay.... Hmmmmm... We'll see.

After a little e-mail chatter break earlier in the summer, the team is in full organization mode - kind of... maybe... We'll find out whenever we have the next team (actually first meeting for BRR2) that is tentatively scheduled for next weekend.

But one important bullet point was crossed off the list by finalizing the t-shirt designs! As usual, kudos go to Alex for doing a great job over and over with our team t-shirts. Slowly but surely, I also get used to this obnoxious color choice that we are not changing since it somehow has become our trademark... If they say so. Anyways, here are the final t-shirt designs for your viewing pleasure!


In more runner 3 (that would be me) specific news: They changed the legs around again* and instead of 14 point something miles in total, I will do 16 point something miles with the added goody that my longest leg with 9 miles is going to be last leg... Yay me! That's going to be FUN!

*happened to me at the Palmetto200 as well

For a little while, I thought about trying to trade my leg with some of my van buddies, but really, the other legs are not that much shorter to be worth the hassle. Besides, the good thing with runner 3 is that the night leg is short and sweet... Just how I like my night legs! ;-)

Note: They did switch their leg descriptions from handdrawn to mapmyrun.com maps and elevation charts which makes me feel more confident in the accuracy, especially for the elevation changes. My last leg last year was quite a surprise (and not a good one) when I ran it, since it looked nothing like the elevation chart.

Okay, let's have a look at what is going to be in store for me this time around.

click on the pictures to enlarge

Well, at least I don't seem to have crazy* elevation gains. That's good!

*it's all relative at the BRR... There is going to be a good bit of up and down and from the look of it, the only beast I will have to conquer is mile 2 in my first leg... Git'r'done!

On the training front, things are getting back into swing after my no workout policy of last week. The temperatures and the humidity makes for rough runs these days. Low in speed and high in heart rate. Other than that... Trucking along!

So long! ;-)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Oooops... Five Years Already! Part V

Note: This is the last part of my 5 years in the USA photo story. To read the previous parts click here for part I, II, III and IV.

Recapping 2009 up to the time I started this blog.

2009 in general was way less traveling than previous year, but much more racing! ;-)

In January, I kicked off the 2009 race season with the Greenville News Downtown 5K... I believe that is the biggest 5K that we have in the area with around 5000 participants each year and the t-shirts are super cool with the interstate sign and the year instead of the interstate number.

In February, we made a day trip to Atlanta to visit the Georgia Aquarium and the Coca-Cola Museum. While I am not a big fan of aquariums in general, I really enjoyed my repeat visit to the Coca-Cola Museum... really worth it!

In March of that year we had a SNOW DAY! Since a snow cover like this doesn't happen too often around here, it had to be documented! ;-)

One of the best races I did so far, was the St. Francis Mud Run in May. It's a 4 mile run with around 40 obstacles on a military base in Greenville. Team "Sunny Side Up" did a GREAT job! It didn't work out for us to return in 2010, but there is always next year, right?

Also in May was the annual Salsa BBQ and since there are not a lot of pictures with Terry and I dancing, here you go:

In June, we did the Candlelight Run 5K. That was quite possibly the roughest 5K I did so far. The race started around 8:30pm and it was still 90 degrees outside and the humidity was insane. We were a whole group running and that's always fun... And the weather condition made for some nice "war stories" in the post race pizza and beer get together.

Also in June, I did my first triathlon. This had been on my to do list since starting my weight loss journey in 2008.

In July, I did a solo vacation visit to Germany. I took it very easy and didn't travel a lot, just tried to spend as much time as possible with my family. One exception though was a weekend trip to Bavaria were I ended up joining for a 4th of July party... Of course you normally don't celebrate the 4th of July in Germany, but this group has been living in the US at one point in time and it was great to see everybody.

While I was there, my parents also picked out a new family member: Paul the Puppy... Now, he is Paul the gigantic but lovable dork! ;-)

In August, we rented a cabin in a state park in Tennessee and spent our week with boating, hiking, swimming and cycling.

And the rest is history and well documented here on the blog, like:

Now that we have all the recapping out of the way, it's time to start regular broadcasting again. ;-)

So long!