Monday, January 31, 2011

Beaver Freezer Tri Registration - Last Warning!


I've done my part. If you don't get in now, you're not even trying.

Head over here at exactly 8:00 am on Feb 1st.

Then I'll see you in the pool at Dixon.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Corvallis Half Marathon Elevation Profile



When's the last time you heard a race director say their course was "hilly like a mother"?

Yeah, never.

So the inaugural Corvallis Half Marathon is hardly breaking new ground by proclaiming itself, and I quote, "mostly flat." Is that sort of like being "mostly a virgin?"

Well, you don't need to wonder any longer because the R's and their trusty new Garmin Forerunner hit the course and mapped out the elevation. As the late, great George Michael would say, "let's go to the tape!"



Right off the bat, I had issues. Now I work on the Oregon State University campus, so I know it fairly well, but the course description was, umm, vague. At best.

First, we have "winding through the Memorial Union and The Valley Library lawns, back to Jefferson..." Well, that leaves about 491 different way to get across that section of campus. But it got even worse at the end: "once you pass the Forest Sciences Lab, you'll zig zag back to Washington Way." What? Unless they're taking us cross-country, I don't see any way to zig zag there.

Nevertheless, the majority of the course was easy enough to follow and since there's a little bit at the end inside Reser, my finishing total of 12.72 miles was pretty close to the actual course.

So is it flat? Well, it's not like glass, that's for sure, but you decide for yourself. I'm just a humble reporter.


See you April 10th!

Garmin Forerunner 110 Review!



Yes, I decided to buy a big watch for my girlie little wrist.

Thankfully, Garmin finally came out with a simple GPS watch, the Forerunner 110, to accompany the other watches in their GPS line, including the Star Trek Communicator-size 305 - now that thing would dwarf my wrist like Snow White on a bad hair day (yeah, that didn't make any sense). Anyway, I've gone on three long runs now with the 110 and I'm loving it.

First, it's simple. It's meant to track your runs (or bike rides, if that's your thing) without a bunch of fancy bells and whistles and that's what it does. Punch the button and it starts locating satellites. There have been some complaints about how long it takes to find them, but it's found them for me between one and three minutes every time. I mean, come on, I think people are getting a little too used to the high-tech life. Three minutes is too much for a watch size GPS unit to find satellites in freaking OUTER SPACE that it communicates with to tell you your exact position on the Earth? Yeah, I think three minutes is fine.



Once you finish your run and download the run, you get distance, pace, a map of the run (above), elevation profile of the run, calories burned, pace for each mile, etc. It's a wealth of info.

Did I mention I love it?

So if you've got an extra $200 to blow, I totally recommend it.

Friday, January 28, 2011

I See the Light!


No, really.

We've had sun here in Corvallis three straight days now and the race calendar is getting more and more...longer.

Anyhoo, I'm feeling like Winter is on the way out! And running in a short-sleeve shirt is just around the corner.

Woot!

Let's race!

RACES FOR WEEK OF FEBRUARY 7th TO FEBRUARY 13th

February 12th / Run for Your Sweet Heart 10k and 5k / St. Paul, OR

February 12th / Heart and Sole 10k and 5k / Longview, WA

February 12th / Love 'Em or Leave 'Em Valentine's Day Dash 5k / Seattle, WA

February 12th / Two for the Road 5k / Bellingham, WA

February 12th / Matchmaker 5k / Centralia, WA

February 13th / Truffle Shuffle 4 mile run / Eugene, OR

February 13th / Worst Day of the Year Ride 40 mile and 18 mile / Portland, OR

February 13th / You Knock My Socks Off 4 Miler / Gig Harbor, WA

February 13th / Partners in Pain 5k / Spokane, WA

February 13th / Cupid's Marathon, Half-Marathon, 10 mile, 10k, 5k and Duathlon / Rochester, WA

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Every Race in Corvallis is now E.P.I.C.


What can I say? ERIC just doesn't have the same ring to it as EPIC.

So my goal of racing every race and tri in Corvallis in 2011 is now officially known as:

E.P.I.C. 2011!!

Or Every Pursuit In Corvallis 2011.

And it still looks like the Crazy Eight 10k/5k on February 26th will be the first one on the list!

After that, we're looking at:
-Make a Change 10k/5k on March 26th
-Beaver Freezer Sprint Triathlon on April 2nd
-Corvallis Half Marathon on April 10th

Get signed up for some of these and join me on the roads and trails (and pools) of Corvallis!

...so I entered in "EPIC Corvallis" on Google Images, figuring there would just be a photo of me, and instead got a coupon for a Complementary Brow Wax...you take what you can get, I guess...

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Beaver Freezer Triathlon - 2nd Warning!


Hey, I'll try to get back once more before February 1st to remind you to drag your lazy butts out of bed early and sign up for the Beaver Freezer next Tuesday.

Get it on your calendar now. Remember, two straight years now the Freezer has sold out in mere hours, so you can't kid around. Get online right at 8:00 am and get signed up.

It's the race to be at in April!

...that's a sad freezer...

Monday, January 24, 2011

Shamrock Run Portland 15k Elevation Profile


Yeah, the R's ran this bad boy last year...is there any wonder I'm not looking to repeat this year? It's a stiff climb, make no doubt about it.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Jog FM - Music for Runners


Wow - I really, no, REALLY, like this website.

It picks music to listen to while you run, adjustable by pace and BPM and type of music and popularity and...

Sweet!

Here are my picks for an 8:00 mile pace. And here are my picks adjusted to music that I actually like.

This is very cool.

Random Running Website score: A

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Best Running Song for January!


It's January. Cold. Wet. Windy. Miserable. No time to waste around while a slow song builds and builds to a mid-tempo beat. Nope. We need to get this thing up and running, like right now.

So I bring you We Are Scientists.

These guys can get it cranked up fast. The song of the month, The Great Escape, doesn't even kid around. It gets the beats up there right from the start and doesn't let up until it's over. Just what you need to get you moving out there.

Here's another nice version, live, from Jools Holland.

These guys have other songs that work well on the road, like Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt, which has a video with tons of running in it, and After Hours, which is pretty funny.

Get a move on...we're still two months away from Spring.

Past Best Running Songs:
December: Cee Lo Green / "F**k You"
November: Tokyo Police Club / "Breakneck Speed"
October: Two Door Cinema Club / "Something Good Can Work"
September: Stone Temple Pilots / "Cinnamon"
August: Louis XIV / "Guilt by Association"
July: Devo / "Fresh"
June: Saliva / "Your Disease"
May: Metric / "Gold Guns Girls"
April: OK Go / "This Too Shall Pass"
March: The Hours / "Ali In The Jungle"
February: Los Fabulosos Cadillacs / "El Matador"
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, January 18, 2011

Zena Road Runs - A Master's Race


No, not a race for Master's - the race itself is old enough to be a Master. This is the 43rd annual Zena Road Race and I'm sure I don't need to tell you how many races have made it to their 43rd year.

Head to Salem and participate in one of the oldest races in the Northwest!

All hail ZENA!

Let's race!

RACES FOR WEEK OF FEBRUARY 1st TO FEBRUARY 7th

February 5th / Resolution Run 10k and 5k / St. Paul, OR

February 5th / Westside Cooperative Preschool's Friendship 5k / Olympia, WA

February 5th / Frosty Four Miler / Yakima, WA

February 6th / Zena Road Runs 15k, 6 mile and 3 mile runs / Salem, OR

Monday, January 17, 2011

Barefoot and Minimalist Running Here to Stay


Whether you want it or not.

If you're a regular reader of the R's, you already know my feelings about Barefoot Running. Cliff Notes version: it's fine for a very small subset of runners and an injury waiting to happen for most.

Unfortunately, now that the running shoe companies have figured out how to make money from barefoot running (yeah, they can't make money from barefoot running, so...hello minimalist running shoes!), you can be sure that the barefoot/minimalist trend won't be going away anytime soon.

But can't we be reasonable about this whole barefoot thing? I picked up the October 2010 issue of TrailRunner Magazine at the library and its got an article in it by someone named Michael Sandler, titled: Feel the Dirt Move Under Your Feet - How Barefoot Training Can Help You Fly.

Oh boy.

Hey, you want to run barefoot, knock yourself out. But I have to question how objective an article like this is, considering Mr. Sandler just happens to own a company called RunBare and has a book out titled: Barefoot Running: How to Run Light and Free by Getting in Touch with the Earth.

Does TrailRunner really think we're going to get a fair, balanced view of barefoot running like this? Come on.

Trust me, the shoe companies will spend plenty lying to us about how great minimalist shoes are, we don't need our few major media outlets doing the same thing.

Photo: "If the Barefooters had the R's running their advertising campaign."

Saturday, January 15, 2011

HURT 100 Results!


They're on the course right now! One of the toughest Ultras in the world. Check it out!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Now This Is Cross Country Running!

Nothing says cross country running like mud. And that's exactly what the runners got at the Nike Cross Country Team Championships in Portland last month.

Really, the pictures say it all. Just awesome.

Thanks to the American Running Association for the photos. You can see more shots at their website.




Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Beaver Freezer First Warning!


OK, first warning of the year: don't sleep in on February 1st! The registration for the Beaver Freezer will open at 8:00am, on February 1st. It sold out in less than two hours last year...and that was with them letting in an extra 200 racers compared to the year before!

I'll give you a few more reminders, but get it on your calendar now - it will sell out fast!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Slogging through the Winter!


And lo, when I entered that phrase into Google Images, that's the photo that came back. Looks pretty mucky. Which it is here in Corvallis as well. And likely in most areas across the country.

Winter + Rain + Snow + Dirt = Muck.

That's enough learning for today...

Stay dry out there.

Let's race!

RACES FOR WEEK OF JANUARY 24th TO JANUARY 30th

January 29th / Willamette Mission Trail Challenge 10k and 5k / Salem, OR

January 29th / Mad Ass 50k and 25k / Madras, OR

January 30th / Fitness for Vitality 10k and 5k / Seattle, WA


Thanks to Brad Hammerstrom for the photo!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Jeff Galloway Method at the McDonald Forest 50K?


As my man Manny B has been telling me for years, the Galloway run/walk method is the way to go on a long race. Of course, it flies in the face of most runners' egos because it forces you to walk, and walk early.

But, as I'm staring the evil that is the McDonald Forest 50k in the face, I figured maybe I should give Galloway a chance.

So I headed over to Willamette Park today and did a very simple, and very easy, one hour run using the Galloway beginning method of one minute running and one minute walking.

The results?

Pretty amazing: about 5.5 miles in 60 minutes for just under a 11 minute pace. That's half run and half walk!

Now I'm not saying it's necessary for the many 5k's and 10k's and even the one half-marathon that I'll have to do to Run Every Race in Corvallis in 2011!

But for the McDonald Forest 50K? Yeah, we might be onto something here...

Stay tuned. More results to come...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Are you in the Vancouver Half?


Well, you're ahead of me.

Apparently, the race has been sold out for months. In fact, it seems to have sold out the day after it opened up for registration. Bam!

Which brings me to an issue I'm seeing more and more of...and I'm sure you are too: Races selling out WAY early. This is becoming a real problem. You not only have to plan your races out months in advance, but you also have to know exactly when they open for registration, because if you're there a week, or day, or sometimes an hour late (hello Beaver Freezer!), then you're shut out.

I've got no great solution for it, except to say if you've got a race that you really want to run, then make sure you have the REGISTRATION day on your calendar months in advance. You can worry about putting the actual race day on your calendar if you're lucky enough to get in!

Good luck and let's race!

RACES FOR WEEK OF JANUARY 17th TO JANUARY 23rd

January 22nd / Freeze Your Fanny 5k / Lewiston, ID

January 22nd / Winter Predictor 13k and 6k / Eugene, OR

January 22nd / No Sun Fun Run 5k / Puyallup, WA

January 23rd / Winter Off-Road Sprint Duathlon / Lakewood, WA

January 23rd / Vancouver Lake Half Marathon / Vancouver, WA

Friday, January 7, 2011

Can we get much faster?


Interesting article here about humans and their ability, or not, as the case may be, to run significantly faster than we already do.

I'm not sure Usain Bolt actually tells us much. I don't think the fact that he has crushed records means they will just continue to be crushed. If Bolt can indeed run a 9.4, as he says, that doesn't mean the next great sprinter will run a 9.3. Maybe Bolt is truly close to the end of the line. After all, there is a point where humans just can't go faster...and we'll get there sooner, rather that later, in races like the 100 meters.

We might have a little more breathing room on races like the marathon, especially for women, but they're running marathons unbelievably fast now as well, so...

What do you think?

Thanks to Richard Giles for the photo.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Shoes!


Ahhhhhhhh...new running shoes. There's just nothing like it. So cozy. So shiny. So sweet.

As you remember, well you should, I have been wearing the Nike Air Max Moto 6 for a number of years now, and when Nike went to the Moto 7, I was less than impressed.

But somehow the Nike store in Woodburn still has the Moto 6's! I don't know how long they're going to keep it up, but I'm not complaining. And I got some SWEET black ones. Check 'em out up above.

$74.99 - that's a bargain at twice the price, as far as I'm concerned.

New shoes! Woot!