Monthly Archives: February 2012

New Found Focus

When I started running back in July of 2011, I never figured on training for anything beyond my first 5k.  I’ve been hooked since the day I crossed that 5K finish line.  Not long after that 5K I ran five miles.  Then I ran six.  Then 8!  Now I’m able to do 10.  I’ve got no doubt, barring major catastrophes, that I’ll be running across the finish line of my first half in May.  The physical aspect of all this has been fairly easy aside from a few setbacks that were attributed to overuse.

The mental part has been a little bit tougher.  While my pain threshold is high and nagging little pains and pangs don’t bother, focusing in to run X distance can be tough.  When I set out to do my weekly long run, or even shorter runs later in the day through the week, clearing my mind and telling myself, “its just YOU and THIS RUN” for however long it takes is the hard part.  I know I could not have done it five years ago.  While I am not sure if it is the NEED to get away from the ten million other things that fight for my time, or just a maturity that has come with growing up that now allows me to devote the time to an endurance sport, I feel like I have grown so much since I first started out.

I am sure the day will come when I set out on a run and a few miles in I think, “you know what, that other project just can’t wait, turn around and go home” and I simply have to concede to the voice in my head, but for now, I plan to use my new found focus for all it is worth.


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Posted by on February 26, 2012 in Uncategorized


Bethany Beach Weekend = Great Running Opportunity

Over the weekend Th’ Almost Wife and I snuck away for a quiet off-season weekend down at Bethany Beach, Delaware.  I told her from the day we planned the trip that, “I will be getting a LONG run in down there.”  Friday night we found a nice bar in Ocean City, MD (just down the road a bit) called “JC’s Northside”.  Let me tell you folks, if you want REALLY GOOD bar food, great drinks, and hands down some of the best service EVER, check this place out if you’re on the Delmarva Peninsula.  You won’t be sorry. 

We slept in all the way to 7AM on Saturday, had breakfast at the condo (no, not my condo), and took off for a run at 11.  I started out in a sweatshirt, but by the time Th’ Almost Wife reached her turnaround point (she just started running a month ago), I was down to shorts and t-shirt. 

“How far are you going?” she asked as we parted ways

“8 to 10 miles or until I’m far enough inland to see a chicken house.”  I said

and around the corner I went.  Running on the flat coastal plane at sea level on a nice day is so EASY compared to running here in the Appalachians.  Or should I say, “running on the flat coastal plane at sea level is easy BECAUSE of the running I do in the Appalachians?”  All I can say is I was totally in the zone on Saturday.  At mile 8 I had to stop and get a drink at the Harris Teeter.  If not for hydradation, I’m convinced I could have gone on forever (or until dinner).  I really need to get some sort of hydration belt for longer runs because once I stop my body throws on the “nope you’re done” protection mechanism pretty quick.

As I finished up my last two miles the cold front that brought snow to the South this weekend was moving in.  I’m glad I didn’t wait until the next day to get my run in.  I am also pleasantly surprised at how quickly I have recovered.  Maybe it was the post-run bar run back to Ocean Side Pizza in Fenwick Island, DE (also highly recommended) and JC’s Northside?  My legs feel great and I am chomping at the bit to get a quick run in tonight despite having to teach a youth farm machinery safety class this evening.  

On March 4th I head back to Delmarva to partake in the Tim Kennard 10 Miler in Salisbury, MD .  Up until this weekends run, I was a little concerned at where I was conditioning wise.  I am no longer concerned, I just hope we get good weather!

On another note, the topic of my running came up at work today in a conversation with a co-worker.  He was blown away when I told him the distances and frequency that I can now run.  I immediately took him back to the start, “a half mile one night back in July bro….I built from there.”  I think the important thing to stress to people you’re trying to motivate or inspire is that the first step is the most critical.  JUST DO SOMETHING!

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Posted by on February 20, 2012 in Uncategorized


I Admit it, I’m soft

Sunday we saw a high of 31 degrees with stiff winds.  For some reason I was just itching to run outside.  Off I went on what would be a tough six miles with lots of long hills.  This fall and winter have been way too nice.  My body seriously never adapted to the cold temperatures.  While I realize even the most well conditioned athletes will struggle in freezing, windy, weather, I was totally unprepared.  As much as I enjoyed running in late summer like temps through November and spring like conditions in December and January, they’ve made me soft to normal conditions around these parts.

My lungs burned, the wind cut, and my body just never felt like it was warmed up.  “Man I wish I had just done the boring old treadmill today.” I thought.  However, when it was over, it was totally worth it!  It made me appreciate my furnace and my hot water heater more as well.

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Posted by on February 14, 2012 in Uncategorized


New Trails in my Neighborhood

Once again we’ve had several unseasonably warm days here in Maryland.  Seeing as how this is my slow work season, I took off an hour early yesterday and got a good six mile run in.

I utilized what is the beginning of a new trail system connecting the old section of my town with a new, super huge, development that is going in.  Part of the deal the developers of Brunswick Crossing made with the city and county was to put in and maintain a recreational trail system for public use.  When it is all said and done, there are supposed to be over 20 miles of trails in this neighborhood and the surrounding woodlands. What is in there so far is very nicely done.  I look forward to using this system as it grows.

I climbed and descended over 415 feet of hills yesterday for a great workout.  While I’m not pacing as fast as I’d like to be, figuring out the correct formula of mileage increases and rest for me has been my winter project.  Everyone is different. What works for one may not work for another.  What works for you today may need to be tweaked somewhere down the line.  The main thing is that you keep trying!


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Posted by on February 7, 2012 in Uncategorized