Tuesday, June 29, 2010
At about 3 1/2 miles, I was turning onto a bike trail when I was passed by another runner, a younger guy. We exchanged pleasantries and struck up a conversation as he slowed to my pace. Turns out he ran the Chicago marathon last year as his first marathon and was training for the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon in the fall. He asked my opinions on a lot of the marathons I did and we just chatted for a bit. All of a sudden I realized I missed my turn around spot and had gone 3/4 of a mile too far. I completely spaced out. I turned around and headed back toward volleyball and luckily got there 2 minutes before the match was to begin. Instead of 9 miles, i got in 10.65 miles at 8:43 pace. It felt good except my right knee felt sore the last 3 miles. Hope that doesn't last.
Today, Mike and I headed to the track for our first track workout of the summer. We did 5 X 800 with about 3 minutes rest between. Times started out at 3:30 and ended up just under 3:00 so that was pleasing. Mike had been running the whole time in lane 2 and finishing about 15 seconds ahead of me each time. Jokingly, I said for him to try that in lane 8. He asked me if that was a challenge to which I relied that if he could beat me running the entire time in lane 8 while I was in lane 1 the entire time, that I would quit running right then and there. My running life was on the line so good thing I pulled out the 2:56 and he was no where near me. Of course, he ran something on the line of about 850 to 875 meters. We ran back to work afterwards since I did not need to quit.
I am going to take tomorrow off and end June with 141 miles. I will start my quest for 200 on Thursday with an 8 miler or so. Saturday is looking like a nice long run at an super easy pace. Could range from 22 to 24, that is if the knee doesn't keep getting sore.
Saturday, June 26, 2010
This week has been good so far. I have in 41.4 miles so that is a nice increase from the last 2 weeks but not too much. I didn't want to go further because of that reason. July is looking like a big mileage month for me, at least that is what I am planning on. A few small races but nothing I am going to taper or anything for. Right now the goal is to get to 200 miles in July. I am not sure I have ever ran 200 miles in 1 month before so this may be a first. July works out well for this goal since there are 5 Saturday's. Barring some unforeseen injury, I am confident I can do it.
Side Note: We ran past Alpine Valley Music Theater on the run this morning. Jimmy Buffet is playing there tonight so all the Parrot Heads are in town. Should be one heck of a party in East Troy tonight!
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
To get 10 minutes off our official time, we had to find AJ Bombers Tavern and get a picture of out whole team in the "Big Chair".
Another bonus was to have a team picture taken near a food cart. The popcorn wagon did the trick.
One of the spots we had to find was close to the "Bronze Fonz" as it is called here in Milwaukee. That is a life size bronze statue of Aurthur Fonzerelli, aka "The Fonz" from the TV show Happy Days which fictionally took place in Milwaukee. Judging on how it looks, I think he had already "jumped the shark".
Saturday, June 19, 2010
My team consisted of my friends Mike and Paul who run with me often. We were the green team but then again, so were about 15 other teams. There were a total of 60 teams participating with teams of between 2 to 4 people. Before the race began, the race director went over the rules and then we got our packets of clues and off we went. They supplied us with map of downtown (I already had one), a card to get stamped after each challenge, clues, and a Bonus Clues sheet where we could find certain things to have time "taken off" our final time. The map I brought was more detailed than the one supplied which ended up helping us a lot.
We read the clues and knew 9 of them and marked them on the map before we took off. We wanted to try to run the shortest possible distance while getting to all the spots. We ended up starting off in a direction most teams did not go. Only a yellow team was close to us and they were close to us most of the race. We were on the phone asking for help on the clues we did not know (this was OK by rule) and marked them off on the map.
The first challenge was at a park where we did a small word search. The remaining letters we did not use spelled out a clue for bonus time off (get any city bus schedule). We left and went to our next spot and also found a bus schedule. We ended up being the first team to this spot which was at MacAurther Square near the courthouse. Mike did this challenge which required him to run up and down some steps 10 times. Then we were off to the to the Wisconsin Walk of Fame right outside the US Cellular Arena. There we had to find the plaque for the famous coach from Wisconsin with one of the most prestigious NCAA career as a coach. Of course this was Al McGuire. Mike found it before Paul and I did and the off to Pere Marquette park where Paul and I did a 3 legged race.
Off to AJ Bombers bar for a quick picture in front for some bonus time and then to the River Walk to find the Red Phone Booth were a clue was hidden inside. We relayed the clue to the judge and then we made the first mistake of the race. I decided to try to go to the fire station we needed to find and we ran 3 block in that direction (finding a food vendor cart for another time bonus) but realized it was too far in the wrong direction so we back tracked to Cathedral Square for our next challenge. Paul did this one where he had to to a sack race around a few parts of the park before we could go on. We ran to Juneau Park next where we had our first 2 small injuries. Paul and I did a "wheel barrow" race. I carried Paul's legs first and the half way we switched for a bit and then switched back. As I was leaning over to pick up Paul's legs, he kicked one leg up right into my chest really hard. Almost knocked the wind out of me and hurt like hell for a bit. Also, Paul's back was hurting after this challenge.
We headed off to Veterans Park. It wasn't too far there but you had to go down a steep hill. We decided to take a short cut through some trees down the hill but since it rained last night and yesterday, it was muddy and slippery as I found out as I fell and tumbled through the brush and trees. We made it down and did the next challenge which was finding the Medal of Honor recipients at the Veterans Memorial. We then hoofed it to the bridged to Lake Shore Park where we had to count the spokes on the bridge. Mike counted one section, then counted how many sections and we did the math.
Here is where we made the second and biggest error. This spot was on the lake east of the Summerfest grounds. Instead of running through the park to the next challenge which was located just north of the Marcus Amphitheater, we ran completely around the Summerfest Grounds adding (we think) about 5 minutes. this added about 0.6 miles to our route. the good thing is we found some people to make us a 6 person pyramid to get us more bonus time. At this spot, we had to throw bean bags into wood holes before going to out last spot, the Fire Station which ended up being right on our way to the finish. Here all we had to do was guess how many pieces of bubble gum in a jar. We didn't know that this could have given us more bonus time, we guessed too high.
The race ended at the Milwaukee Ale House where once we arrived, we had to find 30 different 3+ letter words with in "The Great Milwaukee Race". After we turned that is and showed pictures of all our bonus items, we were done. Tired, but done. There were already some teams there before we arrived which surprised Mike a lot. He thought we kicked butt. All in all, we ran a little over 8 miles to complete all challenges and get to the finish line.
We drank some beer and had some food while we waiting for the results. The top 5 teams received prizes and turns out we ended in 5th place! We were awarded some gift certificates for AJ Bombers Pub (hey, I know where that is). It took us about 1 hour and 45 minutes to do the entire race so with the bonus time taken off, we did really good. Mike and Paul had a really good time (except Paul and his back). this was a very unique and really fun race. I would love to do it again and next year I will either run or or volunteer for it.
Paul took some pictures of the bonus clues we needed to find so I will post a few of those when he shares them with me.
I know most of you who do not live near Milwaukee won't know any of these places I said we went to. Just imagine your closest city and running through the downtown area looking for statues, parks and monuments. I just hope I am not too sore tomorrow morning.
Monday, June 14, 2010
Sunday I ended up going down to South Milwaukee for a group run put on by my friend Greg as a part of the Kids Marathon. About 10 or so kids showed up and a few parents as well. Greg and I ended up running a short 1 mile warm up and then did 4X400 at about 1:53 each. This was Greg's first run of the the year so he didn't want to take it too hard but he did quite well. Some of the kids ended up running up to 3 miles, my Melissa ran 2 miles.
I have been working quite a lot on the Kids Marathon over the past few weeks so I have not been able to Blog as much as I usually do. My apologies to my few loyal readers. I should be able to do better soon but in the mean time, we are finishing up the registration process. I will give an update on the kids marathon soon. Some very exciting news on it!
Today was the first week of my annual Volleyball league. I have been playing with my friend Terry for about 15 years now. We don't play as well as we used to but it is still fun. Just like last year, I take this day to go on my mid week longer run. No exception today. I ended up going 10 miles after the match. It felt really good as I ran 8:34 pace. It was a nice evening for a run. Good temps, partly cloudy, slight wind.
Summer has begun, how about a run!
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Orange really isn't my color but in the end, my time won't be slower because I run in white and orange shoes. I have had uglier looking running shoes so it can be worse.
Saturday, June 5, 2010
I did go on 2 longer weekday runs on Thursday and Friday though. Longer as in they weren't the usual 5 milers but not longer in that I want to have many midweek 10 milers or so during the summer or possibly even 2-a-day runs. I ran a little over 7 miles each day and each day felt the same way. I would start and feel tired and a bit sore for the first 3 or 4 miles and then suddenly everything started feeling better (not great though) and I was able to pick it up a bit. Thursday all I could muster was a 9:00 pace while yesterday I was able to get to 8:37 pace. Maybe it was not being used to the heat yet as it was warm and humid. Maybe it was tired legs from the recent races. Maybe it was just bad days. And maybe it was just what my body wanted to do those days. Whatever it is, I will rest up and then the training begins again Monday.