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Sunday, April 19, 2015

Twilight 5K!

Ran a 5K way up in the north west corner of Las Cruces at the base of a section of the Organ Mountains. It was on the Hawk Ridge Golf Club. The race was a benefit to the Mesilla animal guardians, and dogs were encouraged. The race was set for 5 P.M. (a long time before twilight!), and you could run on the cement cart path or on the grass at your own discretion. Everyone was given an expensive bib with a chip embedded on the back of the number. The winds were 20 plus mph swirling around the mountain from the north and west. They asked people to line up in 4 waves.....faster runners, recreational runners, dog runners, and walkers. Of course, folks never listen, and as there were as many dogs as people, I chose to line up with the first group, planning to go way to fast at the beginning so as not to be killed by a dog or dog leash. The start was directly north west right into the damn wind. It was also up hill. If you have never run on a hilly golf course, it is just constant sharp ups and downs. The entire first mile was uphill and into the wind, and just damn hard. I was in about 20th place out of about 200 folks. At almost exactly 2K, I passed the only person in the race who even looked to be over 50. Most of the next mile was wind aided and downhill. I was hoping for a nice circle around the back nine into the finish, but instead, we made a sharp turn and headed back uphill to the west. Last mile was misery. I had passed about 5 folks thru mile two, but these two young gals running together caught me on the last uphill and actually had the ability to sprint in ahead of me. I finished in 28:22. Not a great time, but acceptable for how hard a 5K it was. After jogging for a mile for a cooldown, I grabbed some water and a banana and watched lots of dogs drag their owners in. The awards were announced and I walked over, only to find that there were 4 award medals.....1st place male and female, and 1st place junior male and female. So, why they spent most of their race budget on chipped bibs and the use of an electronic mat timing system is beyond me. Stopped on the way home at Red Brick pizza for a flat bread sandwich and a draft beer, and then returned home. Will check back to see if they ever bother to post results on the race/golf course web site in the future just out of curiosity sake. Feel pretty sure I was the first guy in over 50.....
Crazy windy week. Had to re-stake the elder tree to keep it from blowing into Joe's yard. It is again the exact height needed to shade the master bedroom window, and I don't want it coming out of the ground again. All of the other yard plants are doing well, and I don't need to plant anything else if I can keep the rest alive....

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Another Solid Week!

Fairly good 5 days of running this week. Ran 10K on tuesday a 10, 8, and 8 minute set of tempo intervals with 3 minute recoveries. Wednesday was 8K easy. Thursday was 8k in ankle deep soft sand in Las Cruces after getting the car services. That one left me particularly sore that afternoon and the next day. Saturday was 12K, with 10K easy followed bye 2K at around 5 mile race pace. Today I finished an easy 8K in a drizzly cool afternoon. S0 46K for the week. Next week will be a taper week into saturdays evening 5K race.
Chris and AD came out saturday afternoon and I fed them some goat cheese and pate'. They went over to June's for dinner, and then Chris came back for some bourbon tasting in the evening. He brought me a nice box of stuff. A long and short sleeve technical T-shirt, and nice super fleece blanket, a nalgene water bottle, and best of all, the exact same $140 sun glasses that my best bud Ernie "borrowed" from me during our last vacation in Vegas. So I will have them and the short sleeve technical T for the trip to Philly.....

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Tumbleweed Season!

Although the weather has cooled from last weeks odd high 80's to mid 70's, those damned winds have finally come. I was hoping that since we got into April without them, we might skate this year......no such luck. Been in the 25-40MPH range for the last 8 days, and looks like it will stay that way for a few more weeks. So it is back to dodging tumbleweeds. Sure makes running, especially when you are trying to do long and short intervals, much more difficult. Have been trying to use heart rate and perceived effort vs pace, as the pace gets whacky in the high winds. Got in 45 kilometers each of the last two weeks with many days including some amount of intensity, and will try again this week, and then taper into the evening race a week from saturday.
The yellow roses started blooming on April 1st and have gotten pretty full. the dwarf peach tree (cousin IT as we call it) has about 70 nickel sized peaches on it, so the bees did their job and the wind stayed light in march, so looks like we should have a good crop when I am gone in May! Booked my trip to Billy in Philly, and will be there from May 12th to the 29th. Going to try and get Terry, Inna, and Vitali set up a half a mile from Billy's at the Doubletree inn from the 18th to the 22nd. Billy just can't really travel well anymore, so instead of he and I going to Washington DC, will have the kids come to us!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Bright Sunny 80's Weather!

Lots of bright sun and 80 plus degree weather over the past week. Got 45K of running in last week with three days of intensity built in. Everything is blooming. Been watering, trimming, and poisoning weeds over the last two days. It always seems silly to me....I water, fertilize, and then am constantly trimming stuff back. Allergies are making me, Deb, and mugsy sneeze all day. Deb is improving and able to eat a bit more regularly of late. Made her a few fish and chicken meals, including a monster vat of homemade chicken soup that she has been working on for three days. Hoping she continues to improve so I can head out to see Billybob and the kids plus my new grandson in late may/early june. Gotta clear it with Joe so he can keep an eye on my bride....
Watched the scientology documentary last night on HBO. Craziest damn shit you could possibly imagine. Must be why Tom Cruise always has that madman's smile....
Sent my boy a box of 25 t-shirts or so from cleaning out and packing winter cloths and pulling all of my summer stuff out. Race T-shirts from about 30 years and 5 or 6 different places. Told him he can wear them, or use them for rags when he is working on his car or motorcycle. Also sent Vitali this small 7" acer one laptop that I bought a couple months before visiting Billybob and Kwon when Billy was going thru chemo.....Kwon then bought me a nice Ipad for my birthday a few months later, and I never much used that laptop again. It has windows XP, but terry said that is what he worked on when he was on the help desk all those years ago in Kansas City, and he can fix/do anything in it, so he will get it all refreshed for Vitali. Can't wait to meet my new grandson.....

Friday, March 20, 2015

Hey, You're A Runner Aren't You......!

Three times this week someone has come up to me and asked....."hey, you're a runner aren't you?". The one guy was while waiting in line at walgreens to pick up a script for Deb. He asked about my altra shoes and converting to zero drop footwear. The second was at the Ihop......guy wanted to know how much I still run at my old ass looking age. The third was at the gym....lady wanted to know if my indians tattoo was some college cross country logo....odd. As I am just about two weeks away from starting my 40th year of running, still seems funny to me that people can tell so easily.....
Had three good runs so far this week. Tuesday I ran 10K, with 8K easy and then 2K at around 8K race pace. Wednesday I ran 8K easy. Thursday I ran another 8K, with 4 repeats of 3 minutes with 2 minute recoveries at around 3K race pace. Gotta push myself some weeks to get that intensity in. Hit the gym monday and today, and will try and finish the week with a long run with a fast finish, and an easy recovery run. We shall see.....
On facebook they do this thing called throwback thursday.....people post all kinds of interesting pictures from their past or from their families past. So today, even though it is friday, I thought I would post a picture of me and my bud billybob from around 25 years ago. We were warming up in fairport for their annual 4th of July weekend 5 mile race. Was a fun day. Billybob is struggling again with breathing issues and is getting a cat scan next week. I am planning to get to him in late may or early june. I have wanted to for the last two years, buy my bride has just struggled thru so may medical problems of her own, haven't felt comfortable leaving her for a few weeks. Hoping I will be able to now......

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Beautiful Race Day In Las Cruces!

This is my photo from the 10K from two weeks ago. They finally got put up today.
Today I headed to Las Cruces for the tumbleweed run for mesilla elementary school. Once I got to the registration table and got my number, I asked if I needed to write my name on it and age, and the gal said "no, it is just so we know who is on the course". It was at that moment I realized it was going to be a fun run with no awards. Weather was 58 degrees and sunny at the start. I thought that since it was not going to be a race with age groups, that I would try and experiment. The first mile was a gradual down hill, so I thought I would try and blast it and go under an eight minute mile. I did, and it worked, but then it made for more of a struggle for the last two miles. I did come thru the chute at a 5:31 per kilometer pace, so it was around a 27 minute time, so my experiment didn't change much. The garmin said it was 5.06 kilometers, so well laid out and an accurate distance. Course marshals and police did a nice job also. Followed that up with a trip to barnes and knobles at NMSU for a sandwich and coffee, and then over to Toucan for some gourmet groceries. Got home around 12:30 or so.....
Been texting and talking to my lifelong best bud Ernie today. His mother is probably pretty close to her end time and I appreciate how difficult this is for him. She was a 2nd mother to me also. We used to come home after high school to Ernie's house and eat cookies while Olga started cooking onions for whatever was being created for dinner....always had onions.....
I was the 2nd oldest in the 10K two weeks ago, and when the guy won the 70 plus age group, I photo bombed him. Great guy....still fairly fast (faster than I will be then!) and he found it amusing.....oddly enough, most other people find me less amusing......

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Dang Sore This Week!

Did not recover very well this week from last saturday's race. I think it was trying to blast downhill on those last two kilometers to get in around the time I was hoping for that just did me in. On the sunday after the race I ran an easy 8K. Was really sore. On monday I hit the gym, and when I went to do leg presses, the sticks were just broken. Tuesday I wanted to do a long run, but was still sore and settled for an easy 11 kilometers instead. Thursday I finally felt that my legs were partially under me. I did another 8 kilometers with 4 kilometers in the middle with alternating 20 second sprints and 40 second recoveries. Friday was another gym day, and saturday, instead of racing, I ran another 8 kilometers with 4 three minute intervals at around 2 mile race pace with two minute recoveries. Today I will try again to do a long run. I signed up for a 5K in old mesilla next saturday which will be flat. See if I can improve on the same course I ran a 5K on around a month earlier. Weather looks good for the week...finally in the 70's for the next seven days or so. Need to get back to running shirtless! Joe, AD, Chris and I watched the final regular season game of the aggies on saturday night. They won ugly. They finished the season 12-1, but now have to head to the orleans in vegas for the WAC tournament to see if they can get to the big tournament for the 4th season in a row. They will sure have to play better in the tourney than they did in the 2nd half of last nights game if they are gonna make it. It was a sold out game and good fun!