Sunday, February 28, 2010

Triathlon Season is Here!


Much like the first Spring sighting of the Speckled Spiny Sapsucker, the sighting of the first triathlon in the Northwest is cause for celebration!

And lo, here on March 21st, in Seattle, we have an Indoor/Outdoor Sprint Tri - the Seattle RainMan. WOOHOO!

I also realized this week that the Beaver Freezer will be running some athletes through the swim leg by using the old Langton Hall Pool. It's close to Dixon, but a bit farther away, so they'll have to figure out how to run the Dixon people around a bit to make it even. This will allow the race to squeeze in 650 racers, where last year they only had 400.

I've never even been into the Langton Pool before. I'll go check it out soon and give you a report.

Let's race!

RACES FOR WEEK OF MARCH 15th TO MARCH 21st

March 20th / Santiam Canyon Scramble 5 miles / Lyons, OR

March 20th / Lucky Clover 10k and 5k / Springfield, OR

March 20th / Foothills Dash 10k and 5k / Orting, WA

March 20th / Scot Trot 5k / Shoreline, WA

March 20th / Ephrata Canal Caper 10k / Ephrata, WA

March 20th / Ribbon River Run 5k / Richland, WA

March 20th / Chuckanut Ridge 50k / Bellingham, WA

March 20th / Clark County Prevention Awareness 10k and 5k / Camas, WA

March 21st / Seattle RainMan Indoor Sprint Triathlon / Seattle, WA

March 21st / Big Climb, 69 Flights! / Seattle, WA

March 21st / Mercer Island Rotary Half-Marathon, 10k and 5k / Mercer Island, WA

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Barefoot Running In The Snow?


Put some shoes on already!

See, this...no, THIS, is why I fear the whole barefoot running thing getting out of hand. It's not so much that these idiots are running barefoot in the snow and ice, although that's bad enough on it's own, but the real problem is the article.

The fawning, "oh aren't these barefoot runners brave and bold!" for running in freezing temps with no shoes, slant of these kinds of articles is just trouble. Does anyone really think to themselves, "hey, I'll tell you what we don't have enough of in the running world, we don't have enough people running in the ice and snow in bare feet!"

Sigh...and the comments, both from the same guy I note, about how barefoot running will give you "ankles of steel."

Oy!

Has this barefoot thing run its 15 minutes yet?


Apparently, that's Mike Sadler in the photo. Don't know him - it came from Rob's Barefoot Blog over here.

Monday, February 22, 2010

I'm Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover...


There's just something about St. Patrick's Day that says "Spring!" Fourteen races on the St. Paddy's weekend - if you can't find a race this weekend, you're really not trying.

The Henry's Dash in Seattle is probably my most-run race ever (with the Haggen to Haggen in Bellingham a close second). I've run the Dash probably 10-12 times. That's a great course in a great city and the race just has a great, festive atmosphere. You can't go wrong with the Dash.

But this year, I'm trying a new race: the Shamrock Run in Portland. I wasn't sure what race I wanted to do until I found out that the Shamrock Run 15k was giving away finisher's medals that can be used as a bottle opener! Score!

Let's race!

RACES FOR WEEK OF MARCH 8th TO MARCH 14th

March 13th / Grin and Bear It 10k and 5k / Bend, OR

March 13th / St. Paddy's Day 5k / Tacoma, WA

March 13th / St. Patrick's Day 10k and 5k / Clarkston, WA

March 13th / Runnin' O' The Green 5 mile / Bellingham, WA

March 13th / Run for Luck 10k and 5k / Lacey, WA

March 13th / JJ Mahoney's St. Patrick's Day Run 5k / Redmond, WA

March 13th / St. Patrick's Day Fun Run 4 mile / Stevenson, WA

March 13th / St. Patrick's Day Foot Race 10k and 5k / Richland, WA

March 13th / Finaghty's St. Patty's Day Run 5k / Snoqualmie, WA

March 14th / Shamrock Run 15k, 8k, and 5k / Portland, OR

March 14th / Cove to Clover 5k / Normandy Park, WA

March 14th / St. Paddy's Five Miles / Spokane, WA

March 14th / Chapel Hill Run for Relief - Burma 5k / Gig Harbor, WA

March 14th / Henry's St. Patrick's Day Dash 3.5 miles / Seattle, WA

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Longest Run in the Last...gulp...Decade?


After I did my last marathon...well, that would be after I did my one and only marathon...in 1997, I swore I'd never do another. I did pretty well too, not even thinking about running another 26.2 for well over a decade. But even the R's, one of the most stubborn blogs ever to put on running shoes, is not immune to the siren song of the marathon.

So about six months ago, I started to ponder the marathon again. After having a fairly easy run at the Sacramento Cowtown Half-Marathon in October, I pulled the trigger and signed up for the Eugene Marathon in May.

All of which is a long lead-in to this: yesterday I went 13.46 on my long weekly run, which I've got to guess is my longest run since my marathon in 1997!

I won't say I'm not feeling it today, but it's always nice to break new ground, even if I broke it once before - basically a lifetime of 13 years ago.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Go America! And...uh...Canada, eh!


Considering I've been watching the Olympics pretty much every night since they started, there's an interesting article over here at Running Times by Jonathan Beverly.

Beverly makes the point (well, tries anyway) that the Olympics, and more specifically, the nationalistic attitudes that come about during the Olympics, are bad for sports, including running.

I'm not sure I agree. Sure, there are people that watch the Olympics solely to cheer on their own country. I'm not sure that's even wrong. But there are plenty of others that watch to see the best athletes in the world strut their stuff, no matter where they're from.

I sure don't remember too many people complaining about how boring it was to watch Usain Bolt break world records because he wasn't American!

Give it a read and let me know what you think.

Let's race!

RACES FOR WEEK OF MARCH 1st TO MARCH 7th

March 6th / Spring Forward 5k Run Against Autism / Tacoma, WA

March 6th / Honeywagon Runs 13.1 and 4 mile / Everson, WA

March 7th / King County Bar Association YLD 5k / Seattle, WA

March 7th / Red Lizard 5 Miler / Lake Oswego, OR

March 7th / Harry's Spring Run-Off 8k Against Prostate Cancer / Vancouver, BC

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A New Blog to Read


Just in case I go a day or two without a new post, you can always head over here to Frayed Laces.

She's a runner, she's smart, she's funny...and she lives in Hawaii. So no matter what she's talking about, you can always imagine, "wow, if I were FL, I'd be running in Hawaii right now."

Hey, sometimes, that's all you need to get you through the day.

Monday, February 15, 2010

A Bad Run...


What do you do when you have a bad run? I don't mean just a sub-par run - I mean a BAD run.

Well, on my long, two-hour, run for the week on Saturday, I had a BAD run. It was bad from the start: I didn't feel great, I was tired, I never seemed to get into a rhythm. In fact, I ran about ten minutes longer than I had the week before...and covered about a mile less total. That's bad.

But what do you do with a bad run? Do you give up and try again tomorrow? Give up and just keep following your regular schedule? Tough it out no matter how bad it gets?

Well, unless I'm fighting an injury, I always try to tough it out. I think you can learn quite a bit about yourself on a bad run. Staying out there for two hours when you're ready to go home after ten minutes is a "teaching opportunity," there's no doubt about that.

Hey, we'd all love to bust a perfect run every time out, but that's just not going to happen.

Next time you have a bad run, learn a little something about just how tough you can be.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Moon River for Masters!



Yeah, I know I've been 40 for a while, but the benefits of being in the "Masters" group just keep on adding up!

So I visit the doctor yesterday for my "hey, I'm old so do all the humiliating 'old tests' on me please" appointment. Go ahead, picture Chevy Chase singing "Moon River" while bent over at the doctor's office in "Fletch." Yeah, that's me.

OK, now quit picturing it. Now. Please, I'm begging you.

I wish I could.

Let's run.


RACES FOR WEEK OF FEBRUARY 22nd TO FEBRUARY 28th

February 27th / Crazy Eight Family 10k and 5k / Corvallis, OR

February 27th / Heart and Sole 10k and 6k / Longview, WA

February 27th / Fall Creek Run-Around 20 mile, 15k, and 5k / Lowell, OR

February 27th / Buck Mountain Mudslinger Trail Run 6.5 miles / Silverton, OR

February 27th / Skagit Symphony's Smelt Run 10k and 5k / LaConner, WA

February 27th / River Rush 5k / Auburn, WA

February 28th / Tumor Shooter Trail Runs 7 mile and 3 mile / Corvallis, OR

February 28th / Running with the Wolves 5k / Tualatin, OR

February 28th / Max Muscle Vancouver Half-Marathon / Vancouver, WA

Friday, February 12, 2010

It's dry...ok, it's dry...IT'S DRY!


A truly great invention to appear in the last decade or so is the swimsuit dryer. I know, creative name, right? But you know what I'm talking about - the little square machine. You lift the lid and throw your suit in the basket, it shakes and rattles and rolls and ten seconds or so later, your suit is relatively dry. All good, right?

You'd think. But you'd be wrong.

I actually go swimming tonight. I've got a long run tomorrow, so I figure I'll take a nice, easy swim and rest my legs for the run tomorrow. I finish, go shower up, and head to the "spinner." Only one guy in front of me. No problem, he's already spinning his suit, I'll be up in seconds.

Nope. Still spinning.

And spinning.

And spinning.

No joke. You know how you have to hold down the lid to make it work? This guy was practically taking a nap laying on the thing!

About two minutes later, his suit was probably on fire from the friction, he finally stops the spinner and pulls out his suit.

Thank the lord.

And then he shoves another suit from his other hand into the machine and starts all over again.

Oh for the love of Pete!

Nothing like a nice relaxing swim...

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Super Bowl Race Schedule!


Yeah, I'm watching the Big Game...but I still love ya! So I'm posting a race schedule - during the game!

The sacrifices I make...

RACES FOR WEEK OF FEBRUARY 15th TO FEBRUARY 21st

February 20th / Hagg Lake Ultra Trail Run 50k and 25k / Hagg Lake, OR

February 21st / Historic Half-Marathon, 10k and 5k / Fort Langley, B.C.

February 21st / Birch Bay Marathon and 25k / Birch Bay, WA

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Best Running Song for February!


It's bilingual education time, kids.

You know, there once was a time when lyrics were about 60%, maybe 70%, of the song for me. Those words of pain and anguish sounded like TRUTH!

Yeah, but that was when I was 13 and my girlfriend had just broken up with me ("Damn you, Patty Krienke!"). Now, the lyrics are lucky to be 10%, maybe 15%, of the song for me. It's all about the music, and the beat, to get my feet moving at that mystical 7:39 pace (my Boston pace).

So when I first heard Los Fabulosos Cadillacs and El Matador on the Grosse Point Blank soundtrack, it really didn't even matter that the lyrics were in Spanish...that song rocked! And it's fantastic on the iPod as well. It's got that full sound with the huge band - drums, guitars, keyboards, horns - it's got a bit of a ska sound to it that a lot of Latin music has. It's all good.

Now the video? Well, I don't know what the hell is going on there...

Looking for a few other cool Latin tunes to run with...or just need to study your Spanish? The R's is here for you:

Try Circo, or Crisantes, or Manu Chao, or Pastilla.


Past Best Running Songs:
January: White Rabbits / "Percussion Gun"
December: Deftones / "Knife Prty"
November: The Kooks / "Always Where I Need To Be"
October: At the Drive In / "One Armed Scissor"
September: Silversun Pickups / "Lazy Eye"
August: Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros / "Johnny Appleseed"
July: Deathray / "I Wanna Lose Control (Uh Oh)"
June: Raconteurs / "Salute Your Solution"
May: Tea Party / "Save Me"
April: Bloc Party / "Like Eating Glass"
Ever: The English Beat / "I Confess"

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The R's Jumps Into the Barefoot Running Fray!



That's right, in the latest issue of RaceCenter magazine, the R's alter ego takes a hard look at the new fad of barefoot running. You heard me, I called it a fad. Hey, I tried to be very nonjudgmental in the article, titled "Running Barefoot Like Abebe," but I truly believe barefoot running is trouble for about 95% of the runners out there. People that never should try running without shoes: the overweight, the undertrained, the beginners, the impatient - they'll all see these articles and studies that are coming out, and they'll try it.

And it won't end well.

It's an injury waiting to happen for the average runner. Now if you're an elite runner. If you have perfect form. It you weigh a buck-ten. Yes, you may try barefoot running. Although, most of the elite runners will stick with their lightweight trainers that they've always worn anyway.

I just don't see more than a handful of runners being happy going barefoot over the long haul.

Now, go grab the new issue of RaceCenter and watch me take 1500 words to say the same thing!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Two Hours...


That's all it took for The Beaver Freezer to sell out...two hours.

Did you get in?

Hey, I gave up my spot, as I'll be about four weeks away from the Eugene Marathon when the Freezer is running...so don't blame me if you didn't get in!

Of course, that means I won't be able to defend my fourth-place, age-division title...DOH!

Ah well, good luck to all you Freezers!