Monday, December 20, 2010


With a new year on the horizon, I’ve decided to reconsider pulling the plug on R-cubed. If there’s one thing I learned in 2010, it’s that life is too short to sit around and watch it go by. So my plan is to take the rest of 2010 off from running – that’ll be six weeks from when the pain was at its peak. Then I’ll spend 4 months focused on building up my training in order to complete R-cubed.

Part of my trepidation last week is that this trip will be with some very accomplished ultramarathoners. Running 44-miles is practically an every weekend occurrence for these guys. Plus, they’re fast. So heading into uncharted waters, undertrained, is not the best idea.

I was wondering the other day, if I make this thing, does that mean I’m an ultramarthoner? I mean, there won’t be any medal or t-shirt afterwards. That’s how you distinguish between events that matter and those that don’t, right?

Quote of the Day;

“I like hills because you can see the top. I know that sounds glib, but you know that the hill is not going to keep appearing; it’s there and once you get to the top it’s behind you, and you feel as though you have conquered something.” – Rob de Castella

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


I made it 23 miles in my first week back and then my shin started to feel weird again, so I decided to shut running down for awhile. The good news is that after receiving 16” or more of snow last weekend, we now have a nice base for x-c skiing. When it comes to skiing, I started a new rule this year; if it’s below 10 degrees – don’t bother skiing. That’s mainly due to lack of glide rather than being a wuss, but I’m not positive. Anyway, now we just need to temps to warm up a little in order to get out and enjoy all that new snow.

Since I can’t run and haven’t been skiing, I’ve “made friends” with the local elliptical machine. I don’t know how fit the elliptical will keep me – I’m just trying to stop the weight gain at 8 pounds. I’ve actually been doing a decent job of including some strength training, drill, and stretching afterwards. The drills include stuff like lunges, butt kicks, high knees, straight leg march (I use the term “straight” very loosely), etc. One thing I’ve noticed about doing these drills is how far removed I’ve been from doing anything other than running or skiing. It’s been years since I’ve had a physical education class. I don’t play any other sports, like basketball, soccer, softball, etc. AND I CAN TELL!!! Holy cow, every non-running movement is new, awkward and incredible hard – at least at first. After doing them 3-4 different days, things feel a lot better. I’m not sure how much these types of things will help my running. Frankly, that’s not the reason I’ve included them. I’m doing them because I need to, if for no other reasons than increased coordination, better balance, increased range of motion, etc. It just makes me feel good. Increased power, improved running form, injury prevention, etc. will just be icing on the cake.

Not being able to run makes me think that R-cubed will have to until another time. Hopefully there will be other opportunities.

Quote of the Day;

“I don’t know how the creative process works, but it always seems, as I’m running, that thoughts start coming in; sentences start coming in.” – Robert A. Caro, biographer

Monday, December 06, 2010


With the shin problems, Thanksgiving, and busy time at work, I ended up taking a week-and-a-half off. The good news is that the shin feels fine. The bad news is that I feel fat and out of shape. I just seemed to be getting in some decent mileage, along with some good tempo runs. Then the next thing I know, all thoughts of 200-250 miles in November went out the window. Anyway, I’m slowly building back up – emphasis on “slowly” as my first run back was literally 3 miles.

Friday and Saturday we got about 8” on snow dumped on us. I hadn’t even really thought about skiing yet – and ski racing was the furthest thing from my mind. Then I got an email from the Birkie stating that my wave only had 50 open spots remaining. Needless to say, I couldn’t afford to wait and I broke out my credit card. So I at least have one race on the horizon.

I used my down time to go through all the magazines that tend to pile up over time. I came this article that asks the question, “Is it time to get over the marathon?” It has some great points and has me seriously considering skipping another marathon in 2011.

I also compiled all the drills and strength-training articles I could find. I want to give this type of training some serious consideration in the upcoming year. After years of telling myself that “just running” is enough, I’m pretty sure that there are gains to be made with these types of exercises. At least I intent to find out.

Finally, here’s another article I came across regarding R-cubed. I’m still not sure if I’ll do this in 2011 or not.

Quote of the Day;

“Conventional wisdom views the progression of distances, from 5K to 10K, on to the half marathon and the marathon, as a progression of ability and seriousness.” – Jonathan Beverly