Friday, June 30, 2006


This morning was just an easy 7 mile run. Nothing fancy, but it does make 8 days-in-a-row and it gave me 121 miles for the month – on 17 days of running. With a little luck, July should be in the upper 200s.

I just got back from the running store. Another customer didn't know what pronate meant, but he was worried about what color the Asics he wanted came in.

When I resumed running after my injury, I was a little worried that I wouldn’t have anything to blog about. But I actually have tons of thoughts rolling around inside my head and I have to scale back my entries. With that said, I found some “stuff” this morning that’s more interesting than what I write, so I’ll post that today.

Radcliffe and Tergat may not have blogs, but I came across these “blogs” today. I put blogs in quotes because they’re basically one-time journal entries by some of the top runners in the country. Since I’m from Minnesota, I was especially interested in all the Team USA Minnesota blogs. Here’s a peek at some of the stuff you’ll find.

Coach Vigil also possessed the tough love mentality I was looking for in a coach. Within the first week of training, frustration got the best of me. Coach Vigil’s response was, “Ryan, you must realize that you are no longer the stud of the team like you were at Notre Dame. You are going to get your ass handed to you out here, but you know what…it’s going to make you better, if you don’t let your emotions get the better of you.” – Ryan Shay

For the first few months that I lived here, my sisters kept saying how they couldn’t believe I was actually friends with Katie McGregor after being conditioned for so many years to believe that she and all of her Michigan teammates were the enemy. – Janelle Deatherage

Good crew at least on the warm-up with McGregor, Carrie, Luke, Lundo and Annie. Carrie ALWAYS leads warm-ups like it's a pissing match. No slacking. – Matt Gabrielson

Pack and leave for Nationals. The excitement is starting to build. Everyone is wishing me their best and I am starting to get the twirls in my stomach. I make sure my spikes and uniform are packed for the one hundredth time. – Carrie Tollefson

I spent a lot of time with Said Ahmed (my roommate this trip), Steve Slattery, Charlie Gruber, and Jonathan Johnson. We took time chillin’ in the shade on the hotel’s beautiful poolside terrace. People often ask me what the atmosphere is like between competitors. Even with guys like Steve, against whom I’ve been racing since high school, or Charlie, to whom I narrowly lost the 2004 US National Cross Championship in a controversial finish, it’s almost always completely friendly and fun until the warm-up, or sometimes even until we toe the line. At that point, we all just want to kill each other and will do whatever it takes to get to the line ahead of the others. But once we step off the track, it’s back to being friends. If we weren’t friendly, these trips would be unbearable with the amount of time we spend together (I race over 20 times per year). – Luke Watson

I’ll close with some more random thoughts I’ve had lately;

Anyone see NBC’s new show Windfall yet? It’s about a group of 20 people that pool together and end up winning the lottery. The “only” flaw is that, of course, these 20 people are all like 25 years old and beautiful. In other words, nothing like the 55 year old, fat, balding, factory workers who usually pool their money and win the lottery.

If there’s double yellow line painted on the road, do we really need a sign that says “Crossing the yellow line is prohibited.”? Isn’t that what the yellow lines mean?

Anyone remember the Vita Fitness Trails? Basically you run from station-to-station and perform different exercises (chinup, dips, pushups, etc.) along the way. When was the last time you saw someone using said trails?

This morning I saw a guy riding his mountain bike, using aerobars, on a paved path. That’s like putting a spoiler on a Hummer and driving down the Interstate.

Continuing with yesterday’s passion theme, here’s today’s quote of the day;

“It is funny to think of how many times I have competed at a championship event and the nerves never go away. I have the same rituals that I did almost 17 years ago when I started this sport. These are the times that I love. I only wish that everyone would find what makes them tick in life. I am so blessed to have found my true passion and I don’t think this will ever get old. Katie (McGregor) and I always say; people will have to yell at us to get out of the way before we hang the spikes up.” – Carrie Tollefson

Thursday, June 29, 2006


During my run the other day, I was wondering if bloggers were, on average, more passionate about running (or whatever topic) than non-blogging runners. Intuitively, I’d say yes. I figure people aren’t going to “waste” their time if they aren’t passionate about the topic they are writing about. I mean, I like beer and fantasy football and x-box, but not enough to blog about them. But then again, maybe some people just like to hear themselves “talk” or are into blogging for the social aspect.

Then I got to thinking if faster runners were, on average, more passionate about running than slower runners. Is passion what makes them run faster? I don’t know how you would measure that, but I think it’d be an interesting study.

This last thought popped into my head when I was thinking about my post from the other day. Honestly, I think I’m “slow.” When I saw that only 2% of the field broke 3 hours I didn’t think, “Man, I could do that. I’m fast.” I thought, “Man, we’re all slow.” Then I thought, “You know, I’m pretty passionate about running. Maybe others just aren’t as passionate about it as me. Does that make me fast(er)?”

Training update: the bad news is that I’ve given up trying to run from work – after just one day. The good news is that I found a better place. Prior to my company moving, I used to park at a coffee shop, run, grab a cup of coffee and then head to work. Well, I found another coffee shop that’s in a great location. It’s in Bloomington right near Normandale Lake and Hyland Park. As added bonuses the terrain is a lot hillier than my old pancake-flat trails and the parking is in a covered garage.

After feeling great on Tuesday night, I didn’t feel nearly as great during my next run – only 12 hours later. But that’s okay. I know the Tuesday night to Wednesday morning turn-around is tough. I was just happy to get in an easy 6 miles. This morning I ran a moderately-paced 8 miles. For some reason both of my calves were tight. This isn’t associated with my previous injury, but could be from the stretching and foam roller exercises I’ve added to my routine. I’ll be monitoring those calves closely.

Here’s a quick Joe Mauer update now that I’ve piqued your interest. Yesterday he went 2-3 (raising his average to .392), meaning he ended up going 11-13 in the 3-game series versus the Dodgers. He’s hit safely in 19 of 21 games, during which time he’s batting .478. Also, since he’s a catcher, he usually gets a game or two off a week. Because he’s hitting so well, instead of sitting him down, his coach puts him at DH, where he’s hitting .633. Damn!

Quote of the day;
“I said I’d like to win seven Hawaii Ironman titles – that’s my goal. It doesn’t mean I’m going to do it! I said; these guys (Mark Allen and Dave Scott) set the standard. As the new generation, isn’t it my job to aspire to be better than that? I said I’d like to win seven because these two guys have won six and I’d like to be better than that. Boom! I disrespect the sport…and I sit there and think, if anyone loves this sport, it’s me, mate.” – Chris McCormack, Ironman triathlete

Wednesday, June 28, 2006


So, I post a picture of my beautiful wife and the comments come out of the woodwork. I guess I don’t blame you.

Last night’s run left me saying to myself “Ah, now I remember why I run.” It was my first pain-free run in probably 10 or 11 weeks. After warming up with my training group for about 2 miles, Jenna, Jim and I picked up the pace and ran around 10 miles – probably around 7:30 pace. I wouldn’t call it effortless, but it was pretty close – at least when I compare it to any recent run.

I can feel “it” coming together. “It” being the elements I need to be in place in order to enjoy running again and hopefully run fast. Those elements include things like getting out the door without even thinking about it, planning out my weeks, thinking about races, filling in my log book – instead of ignoring it because filling it in wasn’t much different than leaving it blank, actually thinking of a blog entry prior to sitting down and typing it up, etc. Heck, I’m even trying to do some of the little things, like crunches, stretching and hydrating. Someday I may even get serious enough to watch my nutrition.

I enjoy reading and asking for advice on message boards as much as the next guy. Yet some of the things I read still blow me away. Yesterday someone was asking how soon they could start running after having a stress fracture. Umm yeah, I’m going to take advice on a stress fracture from some knuckleheads, rather than the doctor who’s been treating me. Sure, go ahead and ask for other people’s experiences, but to flat out ask “When can I start running again?” seems really silly.

One person I forgot to congratulate from Grandma’s Half is Heather May who ran 1:20:48 and was the 3rd woman. I don’t know Heather personally, but she used to hang out on Beck’s Donnybrook so some readers may be familiar with her name.

Alright, I’ll close with a little baseball talk. I’ve mentioned that I like to just hang out in the evenings and watch the Twins play. It’s hard to know what’s going on in the entire league unless you’re more than a casual observer. Well the Twins are white-hot right now, having won 14 of their last 15. The problem is they can’t make up any ground on the Tigers or White Sox.

The Twins have a bunch of young talent on their team, including my new favorite player, Joe Mauer. Joe is 23 years old and is currently leading the league in hitting with a .389 average. Two nights ago he went 4 for 5 and last night he was 5 for 5. Earlier in the year he went like 12 for 15 in a 3-game series against the Mariners. He’s a machine.

Minnesotans are a bunch of homers. We love it when guys on the home team do great and we even love it when guys from Minnesota, playing on other teams, do great. So imagine how we react when guys from Minnesota do great while playing for a Minnesota team. Mauer is from St. Paul. Time to get a #7 jersey.

Oh yeah, closed circuit to those Tribe fans out there; what’s going on?

Quotes of the day;
“The experts are always telling us to ‘Listen to your body!’ But if I listened to my body, I’d live on toffee pops and port wine. Don’t tell me to listen to my body…It’s trying to turn me into a blob!” – Roger Robinson, New Zealand masters runner

Tuesday, June 27, 2006


Yes, I’ve been averaging about 8 miles a day and no, it’s not enough. But the title doesn’t have anything to do with running.

Today is my 8th anniversary. So happy anniversary to my lovely, sweet, beautiful, kind, caring wife. Hard to believe we’ve been together for 11 years now. Sorry ladies, I know it’s upsetting – but you have to move on.

Earlier this spring I was doing some yard work and by the time I was done, I no longer had my wedding band on. I figure it slipped off as I was throwing a bunch of brush away. It probably didn’t help that I’m about 10 pounds lighter than when we got married. I guess it could be worse. One of my friends lost his ring at a bachelor party. Good thing we were playing paintball at the time and not hanging out with a bunch of strippers. Anyway, I’ve been walking around all spring without a wedding ring, waiting for all these hot babes to come and hit on me. It’s not working.

Ah, just like high school all over.

No running to report for the day – yet. Even though it’s our anniversary, I’m “allowed” to run with my group tonight. We’ll celebrate on Friday.

Yesterday we bit the bullet and bought airline tickets to Chicago. We thought about either driving or taking Amtrack, but with the girls coming, we didn’t want the trip to take 8 hours and have to battle traffic. I also planted the seed regarding Boston in 2008. I’d love to watch the women’s Olympic Marathon Trials on Sunday and then run Boston on Monday. Heck, I’d like to watch the men in NYC too, but I doubt that will happen.
Quote of the day:
"Once upon a time...happily ever after." - From the Snoopy card I bought Amy

Monday, June 26, 2006


Yes, I’m back to work this week. The company survived without me. I stayed up way too late (10:15) last night, but still forced myself to get out of bed at 5:15 and get my run in. The best way for me to get consistent and build my mileage is to get out the door first thing in the morning.

Getting consistent and developing a routine is hard enough under “normal” circumstances. However, not only am I coming off of an injury, but I also have to find all new running routes near work. Before my company moved locations I had access to great wide, flat, soft, non-motorized trails. Now I’m “stuck” in an industrial park where the lack of bike paths/side walks is rapidly becoming apparent. This morning it took me 15 minutes just to get to a decent bike path.

I’m always amazed at how long 60 minutes of wandering aimlessly feels compared to 60 minutes on a familiar route. I know this feeling will pass with time and that I’ll find some decent running routes, but right now it’s just bad timing. I’d love to be able to run on my old trails and just think about my next blog entry, rather than whether or not the next car will see me.

So where am I at mileage-wise? Two weeks ago – my first week “back” – I ran 32 miles on 5 days. Last week I ran 40 miles on 5 days. This week I’m hoping for around 50 miles on 6 or 7 days. Yesterday I pushed Katie in the stroller for 5 miles. I wish I could do that more often, but it’s tough since I usually only run from home once or twice a week. Anyway, she is fast becoming the most quoted person on my blog as I’m including two quotes from yesterday’s run. The first occurred when I was running about 9:00 pace. The second occurred about 5 minutes later as I was running downhill at about 7:30 pace.

Quotes of the day:

“Daddy, you’re a fast runner.”

“Faster, daddy. Faster!”

Friday, June 23, 2006


I've been on vacation this week, which makes it hard to update my blog and keep up with other bloggers. We didn't go anywhere for vacation, just hanging out around here with the girls and doing fun local stuff like picking strawberries, going to the water park, watching Cars (2 thumbs up), etc.

I'm trying to get consistent with my running and build my mileage back up. I've basically been running between 7-9 miles any time I head out the door this week. I did that 3 days in-a-row before taking yesterday off - and falling asleep on the couch at 8 PM. Who knew vacationing could be so tiring. After running my last 3 runs in the evening, this morning I decided to get back into a morning routine. I was out the door at 7 AM and managed 8 miles at a hair under 8:00 pace.

It's interesting what the mind goes through during an injury. There were times where I thought "What else can I do if I can't run? I could do some mountain bike races, rollerblade races, work on rollerskiing, etc." Now that I'm back to running, all those thoughts are out the window and I'm thinking about races I want to run and times I want to achieve.

Ever look at race results and think about how we'll you'd have placed if you had run? I couldn't help but look at all the races I didn't run this spring. And I can't help but think I'm on the verge of "greatness." Just kidding. "Greatness" is too strong of a word. But dare I say, "the next level." Seriously, all I would need to do would be to improve by 10-15 seconds per mile and I'd be "all set." Of course if that happened I still wouldn't be happy - but it'd be a start.

I still find it mind-boggling that less than 2% (133 of 6,913) of the runners at Grandma's broke 3 hours. Sure the conditions were crappy, so I'll "give" you 10 minutes. Only 242 runners or 3.5% broke 3:10. Heck, even in my age-group 3 hours would have placed me 11th. Results from the half marathon are similar as less than 2% of the 5,000 finishers broke 1:25 - a time that would have placed me 8th in my age-group.

So I'm using these results as motivation to not only get back to where I was earlier this spring, but to take it to the next level. Now I just have to wrap my mind around the whole process of running every day (or twice-a-day) and building my mileage again. Vacation is more ways than one.
Quote of the day:
"I can do anything." - Katie, my soon to be 3 year old, as she was climbing up a small slide instead of using the stairs

Tuesday, June 20, 2006


Here are the last of the photos I'm going to post. On the left is Scott, who I ran with at UW-Eau Claire and still train with every now and then. On the right is Super Jim's Lex Luther, Jared Mondry. Jared won the 60-64 age group in 3:04:22 or 7 minutes slower than his age group winning time from 2005.

Here is fellow training partner Joyce at the 22-mile mark. Congrats to my other training partners that I haven't mentioned yet. Kevin ran 3:26, Mike ran 3:34, and Noreen ran her first marathon in 4:38. Also another UW-EC teammate, Casey, ran 3:32. And a huge congrats to Don Wright, one of Jim's friends who won the 65-69 age group in 3:43.

If you're looking for the Fountain of Youth, you may want to check out Lake Elmo, MN. That's the home of Jim and Don as well as Norm, 2nd in the 60-64 age-group with a 3:23

This last one is for Duncan because he likes shit like this. Scooby Doo ran 3:41. Of course he was written up in the paper, so we're only encouraging him. In addition to Scooby, also written up were the 4 guys that dressed as Grandmas, 2 buddies who wore Hawaiian shirts, a family that was on the Amazing Race and the guy that unpacked his shoes only to find a note from his kids stuck too them. Yeah, that's good stuff - really worth writing about - especially those guys in the Hawaiian shirts. Simply amazing!!!


Here are some photos I took from the Garry Bjorklund half marathon and Grandma's marathon. First is a picture of Desiree Budd. The women's winner of the half in 1:15:33. This is the gal that placed 5th in May at the U.S. 25K championships at River Bank - beating Jenna by 3 minutes. She wants to focus on the 10k, but Jenna is trying to convince her to give the marathon a try. Given her recent 25k and half results, I'll be surprised if she doesn't take Jenna's advice.

Here is "Super Jim." As I told him last week, if I had a body like that, I'd go shirtless too.

Below is Michael Reneau leading the chase pack. He went on to finish 8th in 2:20:20. Next to that photo is Jason Finch. Jason was a freshman at UW-Eau Claire when I was a senior. Although he DNF'd this year, he ran 2:23 last year, so he'll be back. Michael, Jason as well as 6-time Bjorklund half marathon winner and OT qualifier, Ryan Meissen, are from my wife's hometown of about 10,000 people. Pretty amazing.

Here are Derek and Dave. Dave ran for the U of Minnesota when guys like Garry Bjorklund and Steve Plascencia were there and he has some great stories. There's nothing like talking to someone who "wasn't very fast" as he 'only' ran about 4:05 for the mile. Slowpoke!!!

Monday, June 19, 2006


I went back to the doc last Thursday for my 2nd treatment. In the 7 days since my first treatment I had run 30 miles in 5 days. The running was enough for me to really pinpoint where I was having pain. This 2nd treatment focused more on the sciatic nerve than my first visit.

Friday morning I went for an hour run and there were actually moments when I thought "Damn, my leg feels pretty good."

I ended up just biking about 25 miles on Saturday but could tell that my leg felt good. With having to travel, and it being Father's Day, I took Sunday off too, but again, I could tell my leg still felt good.

This morning I went for an 8 mile run - my longest in about a month - and my leg felt really good. There was some slight pain for about the first 12 minutes and then I almost didn't think about my leg the rest of the run. Putting numbers on it, I'd say I was 75% last Thursday and 90% this morning.

I visited the doc again this afternoon and told him the good news. I have one more appointment scheduled for Wednesday and then I think I'll be on my own. He recommended a couple of books - one of which I've picked up so far. It's called Active Isolated Stretching by Wharton and it has some really intestesting concepts. I just started reading it, so I'm sure you'll hear more about it in the very near future.
Quote of the day:
"Damn, my leg feels pretty good." - me

Sunday, June 18, 2006


I ended up driving to my parents house of Friday and staying there with my daughter. I woke at 5:30 and drove to Duluth, parked my car and hopped on my bike. Along the way I bumped into Evan who was out for a morning jog, after running the 5k the previous evening. We agreed to hook up later at mile 22 and watch the marathon.

Soon after talking with Evan, the half marathoners came by. I thought conditions were already miserable; 65 degrees at 6:30 in the morning. Not terrible for a half marathon, but with the marathon not starting for another hour, temps were sure to rise. I saw lots of familar faces in the half, including Jim who went on to run 1:28 and win the 60-64 age group by nearly 6 minutes.

I watched for a few more minutes and then bike to about the 13.5 mile mark. I would have liked to been at the half way point, but the way the course is set up, it would have been hard to get to. At this point of the day it was so foggy that I couldn't see 100 meters down the road. What's really weird is that as soon as the leader went by, the fog lifted.

I watched my friends Jason and Jenna (both trying for Oly Trials qualifiers) go by, but had no idea how they were doing. Right behind Jenna was Dave, one of the guys I shared a room with the rest of the weekend. Derek, a friend of Jenna's who I trained with a few times, was not far behind and looking strong. After that Joyce and Scott were about 5 seconds apart and probably on about 3-hour pace at the time.

I jumped on my bike and hauled ass to mile 18 - just in time to see Dave, who said he felt like crap, and Derek who continued to look good. Unfortunately I missed Jenna, but at least that meant she was running well. There was no way to see any one else at that point and still catch Jenna at mile 22, so back on the bike one last time.

I made it to mile 22 about 1 minute before Jenna. Again, I had no real idea how she was running. She looked good and didn't give me any negative body language, but I had no idea what her time was. I had a feeling she was running sub-2:47 pace, but not positive.

I spent the rest of the day at the bottom of Lemon Drop hill watching people struggle as the clouds burned off and things heated up. I gave Jenna a call to find out she ran 2:45:51 (12th woman, 63rd overall), a PR by 1:19 and more importantly an OTQ by 1:09. Derek stayed strong and ran 2:55:27, Dave faded to 3:11:07, Scott and Joyce ran respectable times in those conditions, 3:08:26 and 3:10:24, respectively. I bumped into Jason in the evening and he said he dropped out at 22. He ran 2:23 here last year. His training partner, Michael Reneau, had an awesome race finishing 8th overall (first American) in 2:20:28.

More to come on the race soon.

Quote of the day:
"Yeah, I made it - 2:45:51." - Jenna Boren

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


Normally I just respond to comments with another comment. This time I’ll create a new post to answer them and clarify things.

First off, I don’t want to diminish any of those kids performances at the state meet. I hope they’re all proud of their accomplishment. I’m just saying that Sal ran a couple of great races and set huge PRs, is it really going to matter to her whether 3 people are on the podium or 9? At least with the distance races, you still have to finish, roughly, in the top half of the field to make the podium. What about the sprinters? Do you think the guy that finished 8th wants to appear on a podium with 9 places?

And medals to the top-9? WTF? Why stop at 9? What’s the logic behind that? I’m scared that this is a snapshot into future Olympics. There will placing 9-deep. We’ll have to come up with other kinds of medals, like copper, brass, aluminum, lead, etc. How’d you like to be on the committee? “No, I think 8th place should get brass, not copper.”

Yeah Thomas, good points on the marathon and scenery. Plus, I have yet to come across a blog where the person said “I’m doing a marathon and I don’t care about my time.” Even those that just want to finish probably have a time in the back of their head – even if they haven’t shared it with anyone.

Justin, if there’s anything I’ve learned in the last 2 months with this injury, its go see the doctor earlier rather than later. If it’s “nothing” then what are you out? A co-pay. It’s worth it. This whole “feeling better” followed by “flaring up” routine will drive you crazy. Oh yeah, if you're in college, have you thought about going to see an on-campus athletic trainer? Even if you're not part of a team, I'd bet they'd be willing to examine you. It's worth a shot.

Brent, I sent you an email. If you drive up to Duluth the morning of the race you’re probably better off parking west of Superior street and walking to Superior street or the finish area. Don’t bother trying to park near the D.E.C.C. or finishing area.

Richard, I never really describe my ART appointment, did I? Well since I hadn’t run for 2.5 weeks prior to the appointment, I didn’t really have an exact place where the pain was occurring. I described all the different places I’ve had pain (shin, knee, quad, calf, butt, etc.) recently.

When he checked out the different areas, he’d “lock” the muscle in place and then I’d contract those muscles. I know that’s not the best explanation, but it’s the best I have. For the most part it wasn’t painful – except for the rubbing of the skin – but there were a few places in my calf that stood out. He also checked the flexibility (or lack of) in my hamstrings and watched me run a little.

The examination probably lasted 60-75 minutes. In the end, he gave me 3 stretches – two are for the calf (upper and lower) and the other is for the hamstring. Basically you hold the stretch for 2 seconds and release for a moment and then stretch again. Repeat that for 2 sets of 10 reps – twice a day. He also showed me how to foam roll my calves, ITB and Quads. It’s still early, but I’m feeling a little better – I’d estimate that I’m at 75%. I go back tomorrow for a follow-up appointment.

I decided to head back to practice last night and run with the team. Nothing too exciting to report – 58 minutes of easy running. It was kind of tough listening to everyone talk about Grandma’s this weekend. Secretly, (or not so secretly now) I’m hoping for 80 degrees, sunny and a 15-20 mph headwind.

Quote of the day:
"Just remember this: No one ever won the olive wreath with an impressive training diary." - Marty Liquori

Tuesday, June 13, 2006


Is it just me or is this sad?

Do we really need a podium with 9 places? Seriously, I believe the meet only scores 8 deep. Why have a podium with 9 places? Hell, there were only 16 people in the race. You might as well have a 16-place podium.

I know, I know. It’s part of our “everyone is a winner” mentality. It’s the same reason states now have 8 different divisions for certain sports, instead of just 2 or 3 – or even 1, like back in the day of Hoosiers.

That mentality ties in with an article I read on Sunday on Grandma’s marathon. These statements jumped out at me;

“…but only a fraction of the 9,758 officially registered runners in this year's 26.2-mile race care much about speed.

More significant to most participants are the picturesque scenery along the North Shore, the supportive citizens who turn out in droves along U.S. 61, London Road and Superior Street and the festive gathering of nonsmoking revelers after the running is finished.”

The thing is; the author is not just some sports writer from the paper. He’s a runner who has a weekly column on running and outdoor recreation. And here he is talking about most runners not caring about speed. WTF? Please tell me it’s not true. If that’s the case, let’s just have 2 waves. The first one will be timed and people can wear watches, while the second wave won’t be timed and all watches must be left at home.

Yesterday I mentioned Elizabeth Yetzer. Last year I wrote about the first time I met her. It’s still one of my favorite stories.

Last year I also wrote about the state track and field meet. Freshman sensation, Rob Finnerty won the boys 1600 and 3200 – even breaking Garry Bjorklund’s Minnesota record for freshmen in the 1600. Well he ended up with a stress fracture and missed the x-c season. I’m not sure if he’s 100% or not, but he was able to run 4:13 and 9:07 – both 2nd place finishes.

It looks like things could be interesting next year as the top 8 finishers in the 1600 were underclassmen. Also, this year was the first time there have been 3 guys under 9:10 in the 3200 meters – and they’re all underclassmen.

I made it out for an easy 6 miles last night. Ever feel like you’re the slowest person on earth in terms of getting in shape, yet the fastest to fall out of shape? That’s exactly how I feel. I’m still able to run close to 8 minute pace for my “easy” days, but they’re just not as easy as they were 2 months ago.

Quote of the day:
“All I want to do is drink beer and train like an animal.” – Rod Dixon

Monday, June 12, 2006


When is it better to be “smart” than “fast?” At the State Meet, of course.

Here’s a photo of my friend Eric’s daughter, 300 meters into the 3200. She’s the one in last. Even with the cold, blustery conditions, Sal stayed within herself and ran her own race. The results: an 8th place finish in 11:12, which is a 12 second PR. The next day she came back with another 12 second PR, this time she finished 6th in the 1600 in 5:05. What a great way to conclude her high school career. Up next: more great things at the University of Minnesota.

One of her teammates will be one of Minnesota’s most-decorated high school runners, Elizabeth Yetzer, who’s broken most if not all of Carrie Tollefson’s records. Yetzer was a double winner – giving her 7 titles for her career - by running 4:46 and 10:26 over the weekend. Neither time beat her previous meet records – due to the blustery conditions.

I’ll have more from the state meet later this week – once I can find results online.

As for me, I’m a runner again. I saw the doctor on Friday and he showed me some stretches and foam roller exercises. Best of all he said “Go run.” Unlike the last doctor who said “Good luck.” Hmm, just a slight difference in those statements.

Friday night I made it 40 minutes and Sunday I made it for nearly an hour. I still have a little pain, but not too bad. I’m a little leery that it’ll flare up as I increase my mileage. At least now, when I go back on Thursday, I’ll be able to pinpoint exactly what’s hurting. To me it seems to be deep in the calf, not something I could just massage out. I’m guessing it’s where the sciatic nerve meets the soleus muscle. Just remember I majored in Economics not Anatomy.

I’m finding it’s a little discouraging to look at race results while I’m injured. My age-group at a popular 8k over the weekend was won in 29:40. The guy was 30th overall. Of the 29 people in front of him, 18 were OLDER. Heck, the first woman in our age group ran 29:45. The same guy won our age group at a recent 15k, finishing 11th overall. 8 of the people in front of him were Masters.

Today’s quote of the day is not really a quote, but a statement – one that would make a great name for a blog. Anyone interested?

Fortitudine Vincimus (By endurance we conquer).”

Thursday, June 08, 2006


Alright, as you’ve all probably guessed by now, I cancelled my orthopedic appointment and set up an ART appointment for tomorrow. I just have a sense that ART is going to be more helpful. If not, I can always reschedule my appointment.

I haven’t really posted an update on my leg (or my training) because there hasn’t been anything to post. Today is my 16th day without any form of exercise. My leg is feeling better, though not 100%. I jogged with the dog for a minute this morning and I could still feel “something” in my calf. It wasn’t painful at all, just “there.” My concern is that it’ll flare up if I start back too soon.

As for the time off, I’m not too concerned. I just read in the latest Triathlete magazine that Cameron Brown takes a month off – every year. And as another local triathlete has mentioned; athletes that don’t take any downtime don’t experience the highs and lows – just plateaus. This is the first time I can remember taking more than a week off in a long time. Hopefully it’ll lead to new highs like these guys suggest.

Just to make it clear, I haven’t been sitting on my ass playing x-box this whole time either. Here’s a before and after picture of the dining room chairs that I’ve been re-finishing. I’m done with 3 and have 3 more to go. I hope to wrap this project up this weekend. Just in time to start training again?

Another thing I’m thinking about doing is putting together a list of things I want to do some day. I don’t want to look back some day and see “just” a bunch of 5k – marathon races. I hope to have some x-c skiing, mountain biking, relays, tris, etc. mixed in. I just heard about this relay and it may have to appear on the list. Anyway, I have some things in my head; I just haven’t put pen to paper – or fingers to keyboard - yet.

Today’s quote of the day comes from my friend Scott’s high school coach.

"It's your leg that's hurt. Don't let it hurt your head."

Tuesday, June 06, 2006


One more thing about baseball I forgot to post on Friday. This is a sport where they’re knocking the crap out of a leather sphere with a wooden bat. Do they really need to replace the ball any time it touches the dirt? For example, when a pitch hits the dirt, they’ll exchange the ball. I hope some bat boy just dusts the ball off and puts it back into the rotation.

And here’s another name to add to the list too. It’s a local DJ’s name, so I’m sure it’s made up; Andy Ditter – And he did her.

My list of running heroes the other day was mainly referring to people I admired while I was growing up. I should definitely throw my dad into that mix along with a bunch of runners from my home town. Plus there were fairly local guys that would come to all the races and clean up; Dan Conway, George Welk and Todd Sperling. In college there were guys like Bob Kempainen, Dan Held, Bob Kennedy, Todd Williams, Suzy Favor Hamilton, Carrie Tollefson, etc. Of course, that list continues to grow with each passing day.

Anyone out there know anything about Active Release Therapy (ART)? I went to a 1-hour seminar on Saturday at one of the local running stores. It was really interesting and informative. From what I found on, most people had only positive things to say. I’d love to hear if any bloggers have experience with this.

I have a new favorite movie comedy – Wedding Crashers. I watched it last night and really liked it. I was afraid it’d be corny and over-the-top but it wasn’t. I really liked the interaction between Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn.

Finally, the other day I was trying to figure out what would be worse, being in The Wiggles or The Doodlebops. I still haven’t come up with an answer. If you don’t know who these groups are, consider yourself VERY lucky. My new idea for a reality TV show would be similar to American Idol; however the winner would join one of these groups.

Quote of the day:
“Listen to your body. Do not be a blind and deaf tenant.” – Dr. George Sheehan

Friday, June 02, 2006


I just have a bunch of odd and ends to talk about today.

I love sitting back and watching a baseball game. Something about the game is just relaxing. If there’s one thing that bothers me about the sport though, it’s these batters that have to tighten their battling gloves – AFTER EVERY PITCH! Did your gloves really loosen that much in the last 4 seconds? Let me duct tape those to your wrist for you.

And how about Ivan Rodriguez? This guy makes the sign of the cross – BEFORE EVERY PITCH!!! Say he bats 4 times a game and the average pitch count per at bat is 5. That’s 20 crosses per game. Over the course of the season, that’d be over 3,000 crosses. What if I start doing that at work? I think every time I open a new file, answer the phone or send an email, I’ll make the sign of the cross. It’ll be like a little prayer – to ensure that I don’t have any spelling errors in my outgoing email – even better than spell check.

Speaking of email, I’m officially to the point where I don’t send enough letters through snail mail. Anyone else do this...put the return address label where the stamp goes? That's what happened when I was getting a graduation card ready this morning. Of course, it's a colored envelop that ripped when I pulled off the label. Now there’s a huge white spot showing through.

Our company is doing well and expanding. We’re hiring a bunch of new people – mostly recent college grads. I’ve seen a few resumes for the candidates and it’s scary. I’m not sure how some of them will ever get an interview.

Product Process Senior

 In charge of the merchandising and inventory teams.
 Receive, transfer, and move products.
 Got a MVP award as a senior.
 Recently received my fifth yearly review, in which I received a score of 4.6 out of 5.

 Receive, transfer, and move products.
 Received multiple MVP awards.

 Set planograms, put out new releases, and also sales.
 Learned a great deal about consumer purchasing habits in music, movies, and software.
 Spent a majority of my tenure in this department.
 Received multiple MVP awards in this department.

 Set planograms, ad sets, work trucks, and do pricing.
 Received multiple MVP awards in merchandising, which are given out every quarter.

Can you say “boring and repetitive”?

Speaking of work, one of the guys here is named Richard Payne. Get it, Dick Pain. Come on people, think a little when you're naming your kids.

Finally, this is a running blog, so I’ll end with a couple of running-related topics. Duncan’s Casey Moutlon interview posed the question “Who are your running heroes, and why?” To which Casey responded, “Bill Rodgers, Dick Beardsley, Derek Clayton, Joan [Samuelson], Jack Foster, Ron Daws, Benji Durden, Bob Hodge, Paula Radcliffe, Weldon Johnson, Brian Sell, Clint Verran, Trent Briney…I could go on forever.” What a great list, and from an 18, er, I mean twenty-something “kid”. That kind of got me thinking about runners I admired while growing up. Obviously there’s Rodgers and Salazar and being so close to Minnesota, there’s Beardsley and Bjorklund. Who are/were your running idols?

Normally I don’t like to post links to articles that are easy to find, but speaking of running heroes, this article on Boulder is a good read. Today’s quote of the day comes from this article;

Quote of the day:
"None of us knew how good we were. None of us knew how bad we were. We just all thought, 'If he can make the Olympic team, so can I."' – Steve Flanagan