Friday, August 10, 2012

Brent vs. The July

As proof that a man can not subsist on 5K PRs alone, I'm starting to get a little worried about my progress as a runner here.  I've made excuses for the hot summer about as much as I possibly can, so there's obviously something going on here.  I'm not as good this summer as last summer, other than 5Ks and total distance. 

First thing that needs to be pointed out is the elephant in the room that I haven't been addressing...the honeymoon weight from last year has never truly went away.  I've fought it off a few times now, but right about the point where I think I have finally nailed the coffin shut on it, I'm fighting it off again.  I've never continued to drop below it.  It's been a nice battle against myself.

Die Shadow Fatty!
 Ironically, the closest I've come yet to completely killing this baby (my stomach bears a slight resemblance to a pregnant woman....reference to horrible Schwarzenegger movie in 3....2....1...) was my vacation last month.  How?  You tell me.  Here is a list of what I was doing on an average day:

Standard Camping Vacation Daily Captain's Log
-Wake up, make coffee, and eat eggs & toast, pancakes or cereal for breakfast
-Sit around reading until wife wakes up, or Renfield wants to walk around.
-Keep picking away at wife's cashews and peanut M&Ms, despite the fact you already had to buy her more
-Go to Lake Michigan and not really swim, but soak a lot
-Read more
-Start drinking Oberon/Magic Hat #9
-Eat beef jerky and sunflower seeds while reading more
-Drive around and/or more lake
-Cook some sort of meat dinner over a fire
-See Sunset
-Start Fire
-Cease drinking Oberon/Magic Hat #9
-End Fire
-Sleep in Tent

Can you find what caused me to come home almost 10 pounds lighter that week?  It's not in there from what I see.  You should probably keep in mind the fact I barely ran that week too.

As far as the monthly goals, forget it.

1) Pick 12 things of social importance that I've had limited exposure to, but decided I didn't like and immerse myself in each of them for 1 month.

 I didn't immerse myself in anything other than relaxation and a lot of reading this month, both things I already know I like.

2) Learn 12 new recipes (1/month).

 I didn't cook any new dishes, despite the fact I came home with a recipe in hand several times.  Whenever I was ready to make a new dish, I realized there would be no time for it that day.  Let's face it, Monday and Wednesday don't even exist for me anymore.  It's work, run, hang with my friend for a bit, dinner, and bed.  Running's absorbed those days for me.

3) Do 12 home improvements (1/month). 

Hop on the excuses express with me...c'mon....choo CHOOO!!!  It's been too hot to reglaze and repaint windows.  That's pretty much the most important thing to do around here before winter hits.  With some of the other things going on and prices going up, we honestly haven't had any home improvement budget, either.  It didn't help having the power out for days.  Wait a second, we have a new main breaker in the basement because it went out....there we go...home improvement ACCOMPLISHED!

4) Try 12 new restaurants (1/month).

Didn't try a single one.  Even up north, we went to our same two standard haunts (only once each), probably because they're about the only restaurants in town.  We didn't eat out much at all this month, honestly.  Twice up north, once at our favorite Mexi-place because of a coupon, and once with my good friend/former roommate when he was in town, and he wanted Thai food from our standard place.  Me and my mouth full of curry noodles had no cause to argue.
Interesting people hanging out at our Mexican  restaurant these days.
(No there's not a small supernova on my shoulder)
July Extras

Running High- Repeat Age Group win at the Ophelia Bonner.  Sadly, I was a few seconds slower than last year so I don't feel all that high about it.

Running Low- Having the Volkslaufe kick the living snot out of me, and feeling sick after.  This while losing almost 6 minutes in time from last year.  That's just sad.  Forget the heat.  There's no excuse for this.

Mileage- 116 Miles.  This is the only July PR I set.  I am mildly proud of this considering I did pretty much take an entire week off from real running.

I'm coming to the conclusion that I can't just let the miles take care of themselves anymore.  Just because I'm running further, doesn't mean I'm running well.  Sure it's a lot of strain on me to get the distance up, but I am really questioning my effort with things.  I've sat back and played everything safe.  I don't think I've ran once this summer while setting a pace where I may actually burn out before the end.  It's not that I look forward to turning to my running friend and saying, "I'm a weak, slow-moving marshmallow and I have to stop and walk now," but I have to try to push my pace a bit, even if it means admitting a defeat. 

I'm instituting an "August of Accountability."  I will try to get down to pre-wedding weight.  I will push out my runs every time out as much as I can (from here on), especially after The Legend (recap on that later).  I will do whatever I can to once again beat my Crim time this month.  I will hit my monthly goals, even if the thing of "social importance" that I don't like happens to be Anheiser-Busch products.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Warrior Dash 2

Last weekend I ran the Warrior Dash for the second time.  J and I always do outfits.  This year's plan...80's WWF wrestlers.

I woke up, got costumed up, and made some Rowdy Roddy Pancakes
Renfield always wants our food
My wife and I headed out to the county park where it was, and paid the outrageous $20 to park.  Then we spent about an hour trying to find my friend, which really shouldn't have been so hard, considering his outfit.
I finally found him scoping out the people, including some of his friends in earlier waves, at the finish line.  
Can you tell who he is supposed to be?
We headed on into the corral.
If you didn't know before, you should know now that he's Randy "Macho Man" Savage
(circa Wrestlemania III vs. Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat)
We waited in the corral, while looking tough

We started off pretty close to each other, and stayed close through the first obstacle over barricades and under barbed wire, but that changed at the second one.  Capsized Catamaran required you to swim to some blocks that had nothing to grip to, climb over them into another pool with ropes leading to another set of blocks, and then over to more water and to shore.  My friend is not good with water or swimming, and after wading in and thinking about it, turned to a race official in his best Macho voice saying, "The Macho Man don't do swimming."  I had a hell of a time pulling myself out of the water onto the blocks.  With the herd of people, having shoes on, and sucking at swimming myself, it made me a little nervous too.  Eventually, I got to the front blocks and was able to pull my fat ass up out of the water, over the two blocks, and back into the second pool, where the rest was a piece of cake.  That part wiped me out pretty good though.  It felt like I had been treading water for an eternity (likely 45 seconds).

Everything after was pretty much standard to last year:  crawl across ropes and nets, crawl under stuff, mud hills, and climb walls.  The only thing this year, was the 12 foot wall climb was in the middle this time, and being tired and hating heights made it a lot tougher this year.  I actually had to climb it and didn't basically run up it.

I kept checking behind me for my friend, but never did see him after that second obstacle.  I was hoping he didn't quit.

With a little under a mile to go, I got stuck in a mud pit.  I couldn't get my shoes free, and they were getting sucked in pretty deep.  Not thinking about the fact my timing chip was strapped into my shoes, and knowing they were going into the donate pile at the end anyway, I said "f*** it" and yanked my feet out.  I ran in my socks for a bit, and after figuring they were screwed too, wadded them up and whipped them at one of the Warrior signs.  For the rest of the race, I was a barefoot runner (does this mean I'm in the club?...i mean it was almost a mile with obstacles).

Climbed the cargo net
Jumped the fire
(love this photo, and it only exists thanks to my wife)
Crawled through the mud
...and finished, then taking a smug looking picture with an expression I'd imagine Piper would have
Nailed It
Shortly after, I was happy to see J finishing the race

I still liked the Warrior this year while I was doing it, but the excitement and anticipation of it was kind of missing this year.  The price and the rip-off parking kind of soured it a little bit for me.  I love having an extra excuse to wear a costume other than Halloween, but I'm not sure I'll be doing it again, especially not next year.  I don't know, I'm just not feeling it anymore, despite the fact if gives us plenty of wonderful photo ops.

Locations of visitors to this page