Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Memorial Day and such

Memorial Day was the Cadillac Rotary Stride for Strive 5K. It is an event that is held in conjunction with the culmination of the Girls on the Run program. So while 300 or so 'regular folks' showed up to run or walk, they were joined by 500 or so 3rd to 5th graders. The day started out overcast and windy, but race time it was just hot and humid. This was the first race that my daughters were able to attend as a cheering section, so that's cool. I also talked a friend into running as well. This was his first 5k, but he's been training for a sprint-tri. He's also pretty quick. He told me before hand he was shooting for an 8:30 pace. I told him good luck, that quick you're running this one alone friend. He ended up finishing in 23:57 so he crushed his own goal. They tried to line the 'regular folks' up in the front and the girls in the back, but the starting area was so small everyone was pretty mixed. With 2 minutes to go my friend popped out of the porta-john and we wormed our way into the middle. The race was chip timed, but there was no starting mat, so I was keeping track of my own time. The front of the pack surged forward and that was our cue. It took about a quarter mile to thin out. By the time we'd run a half mile my friend was far enough in front of me that I knew I wouldn't be seeing him again. I hit the first mile marker in a ridiculously fast 8:32, a new PR. About a mile and a half in I spotted my family, and my friends'. They were cheering and it felt pretty darn cool. The race had two water stations, which was nice given the heat. It would have been nicer had the water been cold, but beggars can't be choosers. I hit the second mile marker in a decidedly slower 9:28, nothing to sneeze at though. The last 1.1 miles were the hottest. I thought we'd pop out of the tree cover and catch a breeze off the lake. Instead there was no breeze just hot sun to go with all the humid air. This was definitely the hottest it's been for any of my runs yet this year. Can someone remind me why this event is held at noon? Yeah, I'm just not sure why. I rounded the corner with about a quarter mile to go and I could feel myself slowing down. Then all of sudden I heard my oldest daughter yell, "Go Daddy!" I turned to my left and to my surprise there was the family again. I waved and headed off to the finish line. They separated the Girls on the Run to the left and the 'regular folks' to the right since the Girls weren't being chip timed. As I got closer to the finish I could feel someone right behind me, then I caught sight of the finish clock and I could see I still had a chance to PR. Apparently that was the motivation I was lacking as there was no doubt I started running faster. I finished in 28:30 by my watch, 28:38 chip with no starting mat. Since there was no starting mat I'm calling my watch official time.

After the first water stop. Wearing my Michigan hat and Meteor 10K race shirt (it finally fits).

Not half naked.

I also weighed in this morning at 242 lbs, which is a loss of 2.6 lbs since last week. Which brings my total weight lost to 125 lbs. It's nice to see the scale moving in the right direction, I hope it continues.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Still going... A little faster even

Ok, so I suck at blogging. I've kept up running and biking though. I got sick at the beginning of May. I had ran 10 miles and I realized that I wasn't feeling quite right. An hour later I couldn't keep anything in my stomach. It was a miserable 24 hours, but thankfully I lived. A couple weeks ago, the day before Mother's Day, I ran the Mesick Mushroom Festival 5K. It was a small race, but well organized. It snaked through a campground on their paved road for the first half then it was on a trail the rest of the way back. There was a hill near the beginning of the trail that if I approached it in any other circumstance I would have expected you'd need ropes and carabiners to ascend. This was a race though and I had no choice but to just run right up. My only regret for the race was the lack of mile markers. I finished in a still surprising 28:52, an over 10 minute improvement from my previous best.

This past week I've changed up my routine and switched to morning run/bikes. I've noticed a bit of a decline in my bike stamina, but an increase in run speed. It'll be interesting to see if these changes hold true. I certainly like having my stuff done early as it allows for more family time after work. The toughest part is I have to get up at 5 am, since I have a 45 minute commute and I have to be at work by 7 am. It's all working so far, so fingers crossed.

The scale isn't really cooperating. Since I've recuperated from being sick I seem to be plateaued. I have continued to drop sizes in clothes though, I'm an XL in shirts and a size 36 pants. This means most of my race shirts fit me now, so that's pretty cool. The pants thing is crazy. Last time I lost weight back in '99 the lowest I got was around 216 and wearing a size 36. Now I'm 245ish and wearing size 36. Nutty.

A look towards the future shows I'm planning on running the Stride for Strive 5K on Memorial Day. This will be the first race I've done in my hometown. The next race after that isn't till July 4th, then hopefully another a week later on the 12th. There are some other races around in between, but I'm not sure if I'll make them or not. I've decided against running the Dexter to Ann Arbor half marathon as I really don't want a time limit hanging over my first half marathon. My goal half marathon remains the Lansing Capitol City River Run on September 28.