Tuesday, August 31, 2010

take that, wind!

it made me mad when i read how the wind treated my friend janeen today. it beat her until she gave in to its relentless torture and stopped. that's not how you're supposed to greet guests on tran-continental journeys.

with malice coursing through my veins, i set out to teach the wind a lesson. i rode like a house a fire east to chicaskia road and turned around. the wind unleashed its fury and i pedaled on. "for janeen!" i shouted.

i rode back to town and kept going. i laughed at the gale. "stupid gale!" i yelled. i turned again at 120th avenue and raced back toward home. i was so fast i had time to ride another three miles to spite the wind. i turned around and dixon road and sped home. take that wind!

hopefully the evil beast has been tamed now and janeen will enjoy the rest of her trek through oz! (31.09 miles @ 17.4mph)
this is why i didn't ride this morning. i rode up pine street to the highway with no noticable problems, but as soon as i turned onto smoother tarmac, i felt the bump, bump, bump. i pulled to a stop and felt along my tire until i found the cause: a hernia. the tube was sticking out through the tire.

since everything was still sort of intact, i turned around and pedaled slowly and cautiously back home. i pulled into the garage and removed the wheel. i took it inside to take a picture of it and BAM! it exploded! sure glad that didn't happen out on the road at speed. i'd have crashed for sure.

2.44 miles in 20'49"

i wasn't all that happy with my earlier run, so i decided to try for another. i walked my wife to work and then put group1crew in my ears and started running. i ran north to the highway and then across to the elevator drive.

turning south i ran past the elevator and back into town. i turned on garfield and then turned again on plum. crossing the railroad tracks i did a short down and back into the south side.

returning up main, i ran past the city building and the furniture store before jogging east a block to high and continuing north. i looped back to the school and kept going. i turned south on elm, ran down to garfield, then finished up with an eastbound block on walnut.

ended up just a little slower than this morning, but made it a lot farther and i didn't feel quite so bad. at a time that i was losing confidence in my ability to actually run a 10K in two months, this was a small boost.

1.80 miles in 14'49"

i was supposed to be biking this morning, not running. i got up at 6:00, put on my bike shorts and jersey, pulled on my socks and cycling shoes, strapped on my roadID, slipped my hands into my gloves and put my helmet on.

dressed and ready, i threw my leg over my bike and rode north on pine street. i turned onto the highway and my bike started thumping, so i stopped. there was a huge bulge in the front tire. experience told me to turn around NOW!

i rode cautiously back home, pulled into the garage, pulled the wheel off, brought it inside to photograph it and BAM! it blew. i'm very glad it didn't happen while i was on the road. if i'd been at speed or cornering, it could've been rather painful for me and my bike.

since i couldn't ride right away and i had limited time before breakfast, i decided to make the best of it - or if you ask jeff l, the worst of it - and run. i had about a half hour to spare before breakfast. i could have run that entire time, but i wouldn't have had time to cool down, so i decided to just run around the north side of town.

i didn't feel all that great the entire time, but i ran the entire time and didn't stop. the cooler temps - 75 as compared to 89 - helped some. i'd have stopped early again if it had been warmer.

i sure am glad this isn't how i felt at my race saturday. i'd have been really mad!

Monday, August 30, 2010

3.88 miles in 39'16"

i fully intended to see how far i could run in an hour this afternoon. i started out feeling pretty good, but that changed soon enough. before i was even out of town headed south the heat and the wind conspired against me. i started to feel not so good.

i ran for about 11 minutes and then had to stop to walk for a bit. from that point on, it was run a little, walk a little, run a little, walk a little. i just couldn't sustain my run for very long. i kept trying to put together more than a half mile at a time, but i'm not sure i did it more than once or twice.

i made it to my turn around just short of two miles south of town and jogged over to the other side to come back. when i got to the river, a new song was starting up on my mp3 player, so i decided to see if i could run for the whole song. i did it, but then i had to walk for quite a while.

when i got back to town, there was no question about continuing. i ran up to vine, turned east and headed straight to the house to cool off. i'll have to try to run an hour some other time. today was not the day.

the wind is back

this morning i encountered the first strong winds i've had to face in several weeks. early in the day, it's been extremely calm for kansas. today the calm ended.

i pushed against the wind on the way out to mayfield road, averaging somewhere under 16mph. i just couldn't get much speed, so i just pedaled in rhythm and enjoyed the ride.

i turned around at the 12-mile mark and headed back. what took me 45'11" going out took 38'22" coming back. like i said, the wind was pretty strong.

nothing much to report other than that. there was new roadkill on the way out. an armadillo, i think. didn't take a really close look. just went around it and kept going. (24.01 miles @ 17.2mph)

Saturday, August 28, 2010

1.00 mile in 7'45"

just after i'd finished my 5K, i wasn't so sure about turning around and running another mile. but as i waited for the rest of the field to finish, my legs started warming up to the idea. couldn't be that bad.

so about 20 minutes after the conclusion of my first 5K effort, i once again shot off the starting line. the first quarter mile or so was pretty enjoyable. bryan j and i talked some. one of the other guys in my age group, a fellow argonian named todd, was just ahead of me. life was good.

then bryan and todd took off. i just maintained my pace and passed a few more people. a short time later was when i saw the beautiful downhill. it looked a lot bigger than the elevation graph shows on the route. it was wonderful running down it until i realized i had to run back up it on the way home.

sure enough, right after the turn around i found myself grinding it out up that stupid incline. i ran beside a high school kid and talked with him a bit.

when i reached the top of the hill and could see the finish line again, i glance over my shoulder and saw a few of the south haven high school football players gaining on me. i picked up my pace. a few of them still passed me, but i made them work a bit harder to do it.

a minute or two or three later it was all over. i'd finished the 1-mile course in a personal best 7'45". that, it turned out, was good enough for third in my age group. ('m not mentioning how many men were in my age group.)

i was pleased with my effort and my result. can't wait for another race to come along.

home from the 5K

my facebook status says it all: "mike thinks riding 50+ miles after competing in a 5K and a 1-mile fun run was probably not the best idea he's ever had." it got hot on the way home from south haven. 85 degrees. that's what the bank said in caldwell.

like a fool, after riding 18 miles with the wind at my back, i thought i'd add a few miles so i could have three 50+ rides in one week. a first i think. so i rode east toward wellington and turned around at drury road.

that's when it got ugly. the wicked south wind did not help me much on my westward journey toward home. i dropped tenths of miles per hour all along the way. 19.1mph, 19.0mph, 18.9mph, 18.8mph, 18.7mph and in the last mile before home the final drop, 18.6mph. grrrr! my legs just didn't have anything left. i couldn't push at all. i pulled into the garage, unclipped and walked to the ramp leading inside. there i lay down and died. well, i wasn't quite dead, but i felt pretty ill. i waited for five minutes or so then rose from my grave and went inside. not sure i'll ride home from a foot race again. (51.43 miles @ 18.6mph)

first ever 5K race report

i was a bit nervous before my first 5K. i'm sure i talked incessantly to everyone i knew. probably bugged a few of them who were trying to get in the zone. sorry guys! i jogged around the block to warm up. i drank my gatorade. i fiddled with my race number...my first ever. i said hi to everyone i knew. that would be nine people. seven from argonia and two from wellington including DMer bryan j.

finally race time came...and went. the schedule said 7:30 grand depart, but we were held up by some last minute changes. a few runners who had signed up for the 1-mile race decided they'd rather do the 5K. so we waited patiently while they got the registration chaos under control.

finally, about 5 minutes late, the gun went up and we were off. i was afraid that i'd start out too fast, but i kept myself under control and ran my pace. i knew a couple of the guys in my age group and didn't even try to run with them. one of them, my chiropractor, ended up second over all.

on the way out to the turn around, i kept my eyes on the flashing lights on the sherrif's car leading the way. it never got out of sight, but it did keep getting farther and farther away. that's how i knew were the race leaders were.

i ran just behind a pretty young kid for most of the way out. he ran back and forth across the highway even though we'd been told to stay on the north side of the road. he switched back to the correct side only when a car got through the road block and threatened to flatten him.

i just say, i'm pretty sure they kept moving the halfway point farther away ever minute or two. i didn't think i was ever going to get there. i finally did and grabbed a cup of cold water. i got a few swigs in my mouth, sort of, then tossed the cup aside. how do you drink on the run? i'll have to figure that out before my next race.

the final 2.5K was not fun. i kept going, but not because i felt like it. i just would not let myself quit. one guy passed me about a mile out. i asked him what age group he was in as he jogged beside me for a second or two. he was a 30-39er. "go right ahead," i said. no threat to my position. don't know what i would've done if he'd been in my age group.

so i finished. i was a bit disappointed that i didn't hit my 25-minute pre-race goal, but once my heart rate and breathing returned to close to normal, i didn't really care all that much. 25'49" wasn't bad. i finished third in my age group and about 12th or 13th overall in a field of 55 runners.

after i walked off the pain a bit, i returned to the finish line and cheered in my fellow argonians. the 6th grader finished first in her age group. her dad was second in my age group. another woman, one i rode with, finished third in her age group. argonia was well represented. dailymile was too, with my third in age group placing and bryan j's second n age group finish.

Friday, August 27, 2010

getting dropped

let me explain something about getting dropped. most amateur runners accept the fact that many of them will cross the finish line long after the winner has showered and left for home. here's an excerpt from a typical conversation after a 10K footrace:

hector: hey clarence! how'd you do?
clarence: great! i did really well! i finished in 2,748th place overall and 356th in my age group! i had to walk the last kilometer, but i was determined to finish.
hector: good job! that's awesome!

first, notice that runners have funny names. also, notice how happy clarence is that he finished the race on the same day as the winner. and hector is supportive, too. that's really sweet, but you won't see it in cycling. roadies would prefer to hang themselves from a bike hook in their garage than to get dropped from the main group in a bike race. there is nothing more deflating and disappointing than watching the field ride away from you. getting dropped is the pinnacle of ignominy. bike racing is not about "doing your best" or "setting personal records." bike racing is about competing against (or at least keeping up with) the best. the typical post-race conversation between two roadies might sound like this:

thor: hey zeus, how'd you do? (knowing full well that zeus was dropped.)
zeus: i got dropped.
thor: what a shame. i guess you'll probably be selling off your bikes and joining the convent then, right?

-from roadie: the misunderstood world of a bike racer by jamie smith (©2008, velo press, p. 37)

day two of blah

throughout my ride this morning i kept thinking, "same ride, second verse, a little bit longer, a little bit worse."

following the advice of the more experienced - at least the advice that i liked - i rode really easy again today. it is major accomplishment for me to do that two days in a row. my legs felt great. i could've ridden much faster. i didn't. i intentionally chose monotony for the benefit others claim it will give me in my race tomorrow. at least there was some new road kill to note this morning. poor little skunk. :(

i found out yesterday that my DM friend from wellington, bryan j, will be running in south haven tomorrow morning. i had invited him to ride back to argonia after the race, but he has other plans. so we'll run against each other then part company.

i am taking my bike with me so i can ride home. expect a bit of hammering in my next cycling report. there's no way i'm namby pambying it three days in a row. (22.10 miles @ 15.0mph)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

1.79 miles in 14'15"

now you can get excited! after i got home from my very blah 14.4mph ride, i changed into my running gear and headed out for a short run. i didn't want to toast my legs this close to my first ever 5K race, so i took it nice and easy. really, i did. i don't know how i ended up with a sub-8 pace. i wasn't working hard at all. i promise. now i wonder if i need to revise my 25-minute goal for saturday. i'm ready to go hard and see what i can do.

day one of blah

this morning it was just me and my bike versus the urge to ride harder than i should two days before i run in my first 5K. it was a struggle. i hate riding slow by myself in the dark with no wind to fight and no animals running across the road in front of me. blah! what i hate more is that i have to ride like this again tomorrow. grrrr! (14.21 miles @ 14.4mph)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

2.85 miles in 36'05"

i ran with my wife over my lunch break. her workout plan called for a twenty-five minute run sandwiched between a five-minute walking warm up and five-minute walking cool down. last time we attempted this feat, we had to stop early because of the heat. this time, with temps in the lower 70s, we made it the whole way through the workout. my wife is well on her way to better fitness than she's ever had. i'm proud of her!

brrrr! grrrr!

i left the house around 4:30 this morning. it was 59 degrees. felt like 39. brrr! i turned when i reached the highway and head east. less than two miles down the road i cross a bridge, glance at a grease spot on the shoulder and think, "racoon." i'm startled. i've been riding this same road so much that i know what the grease spots used to be. less than a half mile later, "armadillo." this is ridiculous. i decide then and there that today i'm taking a new route.

when i get to highway 49, i turn north toward conway springs intending to ride through town and on to viola or maybe highway 42. the wind is in my face going north and it is none too pleasant. remember, it's cold. i'm almost shivering wishing i'd grabbed my jacket before heading out.

i cruise through conway and up to viola. i'm there before 5:30, so i push on. i cross highway 42 and continue northward. if i had more time, i could stop in at beautiful lake afton. i don't have the time, so i turn around at 87th street and head back home.

at 6:00, i glance at my mileage. 26 miles. that's crazy! 26 miles before 6:00.

i ride on south. i'm still cold, but don't feel quite as bad with the wind at my back. as i ride through viola a long line of cars approaches. everyone off to work in wichita i suppose. i meet 30 or 40 vehicles between viola and conway springs. i never see this kind of traffic on 160.

well, i finally make it back to 160 and head west away from the just peaking over the horizon sun. i've ridden 44 miles before the sunrise! going west is slow. the wind is not helpful. my legs are seizing up a bit from the cold. why did i not go back and put my tights on?

i somehow manage to roll home over the last few miles, trying vainly to maintain my 17.9mph average. at the last second, just a few yards from home it drops to 17.8mph. grrrr! now i'm cold - temp dropped to 56 while i was out - and mad and tempted to round up to 17.9mph on my log. i think i will. (50.44 miles @ 17.9mph)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

another time trial challenge

i always like to get out and put a time on the board when i join a challenge. since it had been a few days since i opted in to steve p's 10-mile time trial - www.dailymile.com/challenges/1777-10-mile-time-trial - i decided today was as good as any day to give it a whirl.

i warmed up for about 15 minutes then put the hammer down. i pedaled three miles into a fairly strong crosswind that was partly in my face. then i flipped around and raced back home, trying to stay on the road while the wind urged me to play in traffic.

i stopped the clock just inside the city limits of argonia at 29'59". not quite fast enough to take over first place from steve p - www.dailymile.com/people/SteveP4 - but good enough for a first go round. now i've got almost a year to better my time.

my cool down was a nice easy 3/4-mile spin through town. (14.78 miles @ 18.3mph)

3.58 miles in 28'11"

i did it. i ran a little over 5K without stopping to walk. well, i did jog in place for a second or two waiting for a car to pass before i crossed the highway, but that hardly counts. i wasn't resting. when i wanted to stop at 11 minutes and at 14, i just repeated the words i posted earlier today. "the race is long and in the end it is only with yourself." (well, i didn't get it exactly right. i just told myself that the race was against myself. i could only win if my brain made my legs do what i wanted them to do.)

and look at my pace! i've taken more than three minutes off since i started three weeks ago! that's crazy! i'm progressing much more quickly than i expected i would. i'm pretty pleased. if i can run this pace for 10K by the end of october, i'll finish in 47'22", well ahead of the skinny kid. (i think i did the math right. check it if you like.)

can't wait for saturday now.

Monday, August 23, 2010

levi wins alone

team radioshack’s levi leipheimer secured his overall win in the larry h. miller tour of utah (usa) on sunday. he accomplished this without any teammate throughout the 6-day race. leipheimer rode the national event as the only individual rider in the mellow johnny’s jersey. australian rider jai crawford (fly v australia) won the last stage, the 164 km/102 mi challenging queen stage from park city to the top of snowbird ski resort.

jai crawford rode away from marc de maar (united healthcare-maxxis) midway up little cottonwood canyon to take the mountaintop win at snowbird ski resort. levi leipheimer rode away from his rivals up the final climb to finish second, on crawford’s wheel, and seal the overall victory. His victory came ahead of last year’s winner, francisco mancebo (canyon), who finished second.

“the fact that the whole week was a hard profile, hard course, took away a lot of tactics and played into my favour,” leipheimer explained. “today i was able to control a little bit on the climbs. When it was just mancebo and i on the climb left, I thought well now I have to go. unfortunately, Mancebo pulled for a long time, even before the climb, so he couldn’t stay with me, but i figured i better go. i wanted to be safe. i didn’t know exactly who was up the road or how many guys. when i caught crawford, i was safe, i was going to win the overall race. i had done a big effort to get there but there was no denying the fact that he earned the stage more than me. i think it would have been wrong to sprint him for the win.”

levi leipheimer conquered the yellow leader’s jersey after the second stage on thursday. he showed he is in top form. “it was a great week for me,” continued leipheimer. “i was never in any trouble and I don’t think it could have gone any better. it was a great week of preparation for the protour races in quebec and montreal.”

from teamradioshack.us

bicycle punk

interesting bit of bicycle-themed art here. love the well drawn bike and the interesting details added to make the rider seem like someone you've met before, but aren't sure just where and definitely aren't sure if you enjoyed the encounter. (from www.invisiblecreature.com)

something to remember

"relish the bad training runs. without them it's difficult to recognize, much less appreciate, the good ones." -pat teske

2.58 miles in 32'22"

my wife's workout plan called for a 25-minute run after a five-minute walking warm up today. we walked up past the school and south a block before beginning the run. we ran down toward the park, around behind the city building and then headed south toward the river.

at 12'30" we were just outside the city limits on the river walk. we turned around and ran back into town. at the city building we turned east. we had about five minutes left, but the heat and tiredness did my wife in. we slowed to a walk and headed back home. a good workout in this heat. we'll nail that 25-minute run on wednesday.

back on the bike

got out at 6:30 this morning and took my sweet time on the road. i originally planned to ride to wellington and back, but decided halfway there to turn south on the wellington lake road instead. the first time i took that road on my bike, i met up with a cloud of bugs like you've never seen. thousands of moths and gnats and who knows what! this time the air was clear.

i rode past the lake to the end of the pavement, then turned around. on the way back, i took several detours on some of the side roads so that my total miles would hit the half century mark.

nothing much to report. time for a run with my wife to cool down. (50.61 miles @ 16.3mph)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

6.20 miles in 1:02'40"

i actually did it. i ran 10K...and it was painful. well, not all of it was. the first part was great. i ran for twenty-one minutes at a decent (for me) pace. i ran down wichita to warren, over to waco, down to lincoln, over the bridge and up the bike path to exploration place before i stopped to walk the first time. i felt pretty good at that point, but thought i needed a break.

i walked past exploration place and then started running again. that's when the pain began. my heart felt like it was going to pop out of my chest, my lungs were burning and after some time, my left ankle started hurting a bit on the inside. the rest of the way i ran some, walked some just trying to survive.

there were moments of good running, where i felt what i hope to feel for my entire 10K in october. a couple of skinny kids passed me just after cow town and i picked up my pace a bit to match theirs. then there was the section just after exploration place that felt okay. the final push back to our hotel wasn't all that bad. i made it to the front door without stopping.

i walked around the circle drive, down to the street and back to the front door trying to cool down. my shirt was wet! i walked in the door and one of the workers took one look at me and said, "let me get you some water." she disappeared around the corner and was back in a flash with a little bottle of the best tasting water i'd ever tasted. may God bless her for her kindness.

i'm done now. cleaned up and rested a bit, but i am sore. my quads and glutes feel awful. hope they survive another day of shopping. my wife has plans.

Friday, August 20, 2010

2.80 miles in 39'46"

my wife invited me to run with her this morning. she's been working for about seven or eight weeks to get in shape for the run for missions 5K. her workout plan called for a five-minute walking warm up followed by 25 minutes of running with a five-minute cool down.

we walked across the river from the hyatt and down the ramp before the running started. we ran south on the arkansas river bike path into a fairly stiff headwind. we ran down past lincoln to harry and turned around.

running back was a bit easier, but a whole lot hotter. the wind at our backs was not cooling at all. we made it past the end of the twenty five minutes and almost all the way back to waterman. we walked to the ramp, back over the bridge and along the walk back to the front door of the hyatt.

it was a great time together.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

3.29 miles in 41'30"

because my legs were toast after this morning's suffering on the bike and because saturday morning i plan to make my first attempt at actually running 10K, i decided to make today an easy day. i came home and noon to get ready to run. on my way to my bedroom to change i saw my eldest daughter and asked her to run with me.

"i'm too sore from volleyball practice, dad," she said.

"an easy run will help," i said. "go get your shoes on."

when i came out in my running gear, she was wearing her shoes. they're evil just like mine. they made her do it. grrrr.

to keep from overexerting, we decided to actually revert to the couch to 10K program and do the week 3, day 1 workout. we stretched a bit then walked for five minutes to warm up. from the end of the warm up to the start of the cool down we alternated between running three minutes and walking two. my daughter kept up with me pretty well for the first two sets. after that, she started to fade a bit. still she kept going. she never gave up.

after the sixth and final run, i asked her if she wanted to run some more. "today?!" was her alarmed response.

"sure," i said.

"no!" we walked home.

big gear torture

since i wouldn't be on my bike for three days after this morning's ride, i decided to torture myself and push a big gear hard after a two or three mile warm up. the whole way out, with the wind in my face, i felt great. i pedaled along with big daddy weave blaring from my new zen mosaic. i powered up the few inclines i faced and raced down them. my legs ate up the flats like they were pancakes in liberal, kansas, or olney, england, on international pancake day. (see www.pancakeday.net for more on this obscure allusion.)

the return trip was not as enjoyable. the first miles after i turned around were awful. as i climbed forever hill (just named the hill this week), my body just would not respond to commands from my brain. i tried to push but could not do it. i was in agony. my speed dropped precipitously.

after cresting at the summit of forever hill, i tapped out a mile or two to the sounds of casting crowns and tenth avenue north. i finally felt better when i hit the ten miles to go point, but still not as great as i felt on the way out. my concentration would wane and i'd drop down into the the 16-17mph range and have to whip it back up.

i did end up gaining a little on my overall speed by ride's end. at the turn around i'd been at 18.6mph. for a bit i got up over 19.0mph on the way back, but ended at 18.9mph. that's according to my cateye. i may take what it shows here: 18.98mph. close enough to call it 19.0mph.

see ya on monday. (30.36 miles @ 19.0mph)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

a "leeeeetle" ride

since i was on call and couldn't go with my family to wellington tonight, i dinked around the house for awhile, read some of cav's book, "boy racer", and then decided to go for a leeeeetle ride.

i rode south first, down to the end of pine and cut across the east edge of the park so i could make a loop around the ball diamond.

after circumnavigating marty harrison field, i headed toward main and turned south once more. i sped down to 20th avenue, turned east and doubled back on lucky lane. turning right on bryanna, i circled back to main and crossed over to continue a full circuit around town passing the botkin elevator along the way.

when i turned south onto pine once more, i decided i hadn't had enough, so i rode around the high school and turned west on allen. i rolled down this street then that, circling around for another fifteen or twenty minutes before i decided it was too dark to keep pedaling.

i entered my garage again at 9:00, slightly damp from sweat and happy as a lark. my legs feel great. ready to knock out a few more miles in the morning before a three-day break. (6.46 miles @ 11.6mph)

levi!


congrats on winning leadville in record time, levi, my friend!

recovering

after yesterday's harder run and moderate ride, i decided recovery miles were in order. i rode a little to the east and discovered the wind was in my face, so i u-turned and headed off to the west.

i kept my rhythm steady and slow, never allowing my heartrate to elevate much. i rode up and over the danville overpass and out to the 12-mile point where i flipped a 180 and headed back home. finished, i cleaned up and headed off to work. (24.36 miles @ 15.8mph)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

post rain miles

the rain cleared out of the area by noon today, so i took time to ride tonight. i didn't push really hard most of the time. i just kept a steady, rhythmic cadence and kicked it up a notch now and then.

i rode straight out to a mile past anson road and turned around. when i got back to anson road, i turned north and rode hard into the north wind for a mile. turning around, i cruised back to the highway at well over 20mph.

i turned west again on u.s. 160 and headed toward home. at conway springs road i took another detour north. this time i tapped out two miles before turning around.

back on u.s. 160, i debated whether i should take another northbound out and back on argonia road. i wavered this way and that and finally let the dwindling light make the decision for me. though i had lights on and could've safely done a couple more miles, i turned on pine street and rolled easily into the drive way just before dark. (33.89 miles @ 18.2mph)

run, skinny kid, run!

the skinny kid is running scared. today's pace over 5K was fast enough to beat him if i can maintain it over twice that distance. run, skinny kid, run!

Knowing Jesus...

I’m reading the Journal of George Fox. I mean really reading it. I skimmed parts of it in my Quaker History and Doctrines class in college. It was required reading. I had to read it, so I did. I’m reading it now because I want to hear the heart of the man who changed England and founded the Religious Society of Friends. He wouldn’t call it a church. That word was reserved for the universal body of believers in Jesus, not a local gathering of followers.

I haven’t gotten very far yet. I’ve read the Introduction, extracts from William Penn’s original preface to the book, the editor’s preface and the entire first section which mostly covers Fox’s childhood and early adult experience.

As I’ve read, several things have challenged me and stretched my faith. One particular passage I think might be of help to you.

Fox writes, “My desires after the Lord grew stronger, and zeal in the pure knowledge of God and of Christ alone, without the help of any man, book, or writing. For though I read the Scriptures that spoke of Christ and of God, yet I knew him not but by revelation, as he who hath the key did open, and as the Father of life drew me to his Son by his spirit.” (©1985 London Yearly Meeting, Journal of George Fox, editor John L. Nickalls, p. 11)

Oh, the questions this passage raised in my mind. Do I know Christ or just about him? Have I spent time with Jesus or just read the Bible?

Reading the Bible is important. It helps us understand God’s heart of love. It shows us the way to live. But reading is not enough. We must experience the love of God. We must possess the power of his Life within us or we are sunk. It is only by his power that we can live a holy and godly life.

May you and I live in that power today and always!

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finally! a map!

finally! something to look at and dream about! the run for missions route map was posted today. i showed my wife. she and i both know haviland pretty well since we graduated from barclay college there a few years ago. she studied it and said, "that looks doable." it's very doable. a very flat course with a little sand, a little pavement, a little cross country, a little gravel. awesome! can't wait for halloween day to arrive!

3.12 miles in 26'41"

the skinny kid just got beat! well, not quite. i'd have to maintain this afternoon's pace over twice the distance i just did, but i'm pretty sure that's doable.

what's even more incredible to me is my pace over the first 1.33 miles. i ran that distance without stopping to walk in 10'14". that's 7'41" pace! if only i could get my legs and lungs to agree to running that fast for a full 10K. we'll see.

anyway, as you can see, my couch ot 10K program has pretty much gone out the window. i'll probably bite the bullet and go back to it so i can actually get faster at the distance i'm aiming for, but running longer and faster than i'm supposed to is more fun. so much more fun that i ran today and a run wasn't even on the schedule. yikes!

fabian!


this man they call fabian cancellara is amazing! watch him pass his one-minute, two-minute and three-minute man. crazy!

Monday, August 16, 2010

2.65 miles in 23'45"

i was supposed to walk for five minutes to warm up, but 22 seconds into my workout i said, "forget this," and started running.

i ran and ran and ran. i did not stop for more than nine minutes!

at that point, i needed a short break to let my lungs recover a bit, so i walked for a block and a half between ash and oak on plum and then i started running again.

i ran for just over three minutes and my heart was murmuring against me, so i stopped running and walked for two blocks on sumpter between walnut and cherry.

i started running again on cherry. i ran to main, turned north and made it to beech and high street before i needed another break.

i walked the short block to allen and then ran all the way back to pine and vine. that intersection happened to be a few short feet from my front door.

i walked in, happy with my pace. now i have a better idea of where i am. not where i want to be, but on my way.

skinny guy, watch out!

sort of out and back

i left my driveway at 5:30 this morning, my brain barely functioning. i think my legs were still in bed. i think i was five or six miles down the road before they got up and came to my aid.

i started out with a plan to ride to mayfield and back. i need about 25 miles each day at the beginning of the week to make sure that i can get in at least 100 miles before my weekend away with my wife. i haven't had a week under 100 miles all year and i don't want this one to be the first.

i got to mayfield and i'd only been riding about 50 minutes, so i decided to ride out toward anson road and turn around when i got to an hour. that would still get me back in time to clean up and get to work.

i got to anson road too early, so i turned north and rode a mile up the road. i turned around there and headed back home. (31.62 miles @ 16.3mph)

when i got to milan road, i decided i had time enough to take a side trip into milan and still make it home. i rode south toward the "city" limits. just before i crossed the railroad tracks, i heard a train coming. i looked and saw it was at least a three-quarters of a mile away, so i rode over the tracks and into town.

at the stop sign, i noticed a dog behind a fence barking wildly. i looked and he was not looking at me. i turned my eyes in the direction he was pointing and there, in the middle of the street was a huge white dog. he was taller than my bike! i tried to ride past him, but he wanted to play. worried that he might dart in front of me, i stopped. he came up to me, sniffed my hand and licked me.

after a bit, i clipped back in and pedaled a few more feet before turning around. the dog followed me for a bit, but gave up the chase pretty quickly.

after that, i rode directly home without further incident. an interesting, fairly easy morning. more miles tomorrow.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

new record at leadville


levi leipheimer did not get the chance to race against lance armstrong, the defending champion, in the life yime fitness leadville trail 100 mountain bike race in colorado. so he did the next best thing — he broke armstrong’s record.

with armstrong, his radioshack teammate, sitting this one out because of a sore hip from his crash-filled tour de france finale, leipheimer won the nation’s highest-altitude endurance test in a lung-searing 6 hours 16 minutes 37 seconds. armstrong’s record, 6:28:50, was also bested by the runner-up jeremy horgan-kobelski, a 2008 olympic mountain biker, who finished in 6:25:21.
nytimes.com

Saturday, August 14, 2010

mission accomplished!

i woke up at 5:00 this morning so i'd be ready on time to meet up with bryan j - http://www.dailymile.com/people/Bryan_Booth - at chicaskia road. we had planned via DM messages to meet there at 6:30.

i spent a little time out watching the meteor shower with my family, then loaded up my jersey pockets and bottle holders and headed out. the twelve miles or so that i rode before we got together were pretty uneventful. i rode at about 17.5mph. climbed the hills at a fairly easy pace, but pushed it just a little on the steeper sections. i rode passed chicaskia road two miles before i turned around and headed back. if i'd ridden less than a mile more i would've met up with bryan there. anyway, i glanced back when i got to chicaskia road and spotted his flasher, so i circled around and went back to meet him.

once we were together we headed south toward caldwell. the riding was pretty easy. the wind was out of the north and we were pushed along with less effort than would normally be required.

we made it to caldwell in good time and went straight through town. bryan had never ridden to oklahoma, so we did the extra three miles south and took our first rest break at the old abandoned tavern just across the border. kansas didn't use to allow liquor sales on sundays, so were are a lot of bars built along the border. this one was dry! we had gatorade.

from there we rode back into town and back to highway 44. it was on this stretch that we realized the extent of the help we'd received from the wind going south. the same wind was now, as bryan put it, annoying. we made it back to highway 44 and stopped again. this time i broke out the powerbars i'd purchased for the day. we munched on chocolate peanut butter crisp triple threat energy goodness and walked around a bit, trying to loosen up our muscles.

our snack done, we continued on down highway 44. this was bryan's first time on this jem of a road. lots of rollers for as long as i've explored it. we rode past the former prairie dog colony and were disappointed that someone had plowed it up and planted soybeans. we pedaled passed the rocket launch site and three or four farm houses.

when we reached argonia road, we turned north again and began the four mile climb up to tracy farms. those of you from the alps will scoff at the use of the word hill, but with the annoying wind in our faces, it was plenty tiring. our average kept dropping as the miles rolled on.

at the top of tracy hill, when the road dropped down toward argonia, we picked up a little speed, but it did not feel like a descent. the wind was still putting up a fight and we were about to go down for the count. we just kept spinning our cranks in circles...or were those squares?

we reached the city limits and pedaled up main street to walnut. it was at that intersection, just over a quarter mile from my house, that i met my goal for the day and began setting a new PR for mileage in a year. my total for this year is now 5300.97 miles, just under 0.30 miles further than i've ever ridden in 12 months. on monday, i'll start piling on more miles. for now, i'll rest.

after a short break and a refill of both his water bottles, bryan continued on toward home in wellington. he's going car shopping this afternoon. i'm working for my wife up at the school and covering any ems calls that might come up. i'm hoping for a quiet day. (62.97 miles @ 17.1mph)

Friday, August 13, 2010

3.32 miles in 35'18"

i got my workout in tonight, but not without a bit of, shall we say, discomfort. let's just say, i found out bean and cheese burritos are not good pre-run fare. good for pre-runs, but not pre-run.

the first two three-minute runs weren't bad. in fact, felt the best i've ever felt on the first one. the second was okay. the third...did i mention the beans in those bean and cheese burritos? it is very difficult to run fast while, well, squeezing your cheeks. walking is fine, sort of, but trotting? wow! not advised!

i somehow made it through my fourth, fifth and sixth sets. i was supposed to walk five minutes longer for my cool down, but there was no time. i mean NO time!

feeling better now. i'm sure you're relieved. i know i am.

note to self: no more burritos at all until after the 10K.

Press on...

“But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ – the righteousness that comes from God and is by faith. I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. All of us who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. Only let us live up to what we have already attained.” (Philippians 3:7-16,NIV)

Those who are mature forget what is behind and strain toward what is ahead. They forget past sins. Those things have been forgiven. God is not worrying over them any more. Why should you or I concern ourselves with them at all? It is the devil who gets us to obsess over past mistakes. Recognize his accusations as false and move on.

Those who are mature also forget past victories that are behind. They thank God for his goodness to them here and now. They keep following after him. They keep growing and never imagine that they have arrived at some state of saintliness that puts them out of temptation’s reach. They celebrate God’s goodness when he brings good things into their lives. They rejoice with others when they grow. Then they press on. They keep going after more and more of God – more of his presence, more of his guidance, more of his power to minister to others. Their specific tasks may change over time, but the mature believer does not retire from God’s service. Forgetting what is behind – both the good and the not so good – they press on.

Are you pressing on? Are you doing what God’s called you to do? I urge you to do so in the power the God gives to those who believe.

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allez! allez!

you can almost hear the shouts of the boys as they run along beside this struggling cyclist. the contrast in emotions and effort are astounding! loved running into this photo on dailymile thanks to my friend gabi.

what does this mean?

i woke up at 3:15 and considered getting out of bed, but went back to sleep. what does this mean? i am one smart cookie.

i woke again at 4:00 and got out of bed. what does this mean? i am not as bright as it seemed earlier.

i started riding at 4:15. what does this mean? it was dark outside and i could not see where i was going. (i did see one shooting star though.)

i rode through the blood of a freshly road-killed armadillo. what does this mean? the stupid critter was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

i rode a few miles into oklahoma. what does this mean? i rode on some poorly maintained roads.

i was passed by 81 cars in three and a half hours. what does this mean? i have more fingers and toes than you thought it did. (coincidentally, car 33 was our church janitor and car 81 was our church treasurer. they're sisters-in-law. hi terina and melinda!)

i lost use of my headlight just before i saw the sun for the first time. what does this mean? i should have charged my battery last night.

i left the house with two bottles of gatorade and no food. what does this mean? i am terribly hungry and thirsty. duh!

i rode 62.14 miles before 8:00. what does this mean? i am 62.70 miles from my breaking my personal record for most miles in a year. tomorrow it falls! (62.14 miles @ 17.4mph)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

i need some wheatabix


gotta get me some weetabix before tomorrow's run!

Fully assured...

“My fellow prisoner Aristarchus sends you his greetings, as does Mark, the cousin of Barnabas. (You have received instructions about him; if he comes to you, welcome him.) Jesus, who is called Justus, also sends greetings. These are the only Jews among my fellow workers for the kingdom of God, and they have proved a comfort to me. Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured. I vouch for him that he is working hard for you and for those at Laodicea and Hierapolis. Our dear friend Luke, the doctor, and Demas send greetings. Give my greetings to the brothers at Laodicea, and to Nympha and the church in her house.” (Colossians 4:10-15, NIV)

Epaphras’ prayer for the church in Colossae reveals yet another sign of maturity. Did you catch it? This man’s prayer was that the church together and each believer individually be able to stand firm in the all the will of God. And Paul indicates that being able to so stand shows maturity.

Being able to remain steadfast in the face of extreme pressure is a sure sign of maturity. I said that in an earlier post. Remember? Now hear this added truth. Being able to stand firm shows maturity. Being fully assured of the promise of eternal life does too.

Jesus made it through the torture of the cross because of the joy he knew was on the other side. That’s what it says in Hebrews – that and more.

“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” (Hebrews 12:2-3, NIV)

Our Savior knows what it’s like to be falsely accused, to be beaten up, to be mocked and ridiculed for righteousness sake. He knows and he is with us when we go through the same things for his name’s sake. He sympathizes with us and gives us strength to stand firm, mature and fully assured of his goodness despite our circumstances.

Friends, something far better than anything we might gain by giving in to peer pressure awaits those who overcome this world. Listen to the promise Jesus gives to those who are faithful.

“He who overcomes will not be hurt at all by the second death.” (Revelation 2:11, NIV)

James affirms this truth. “Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.” (James 1:12, NIV)

Mature believers follow Jesus no matter what because they know there’s no one that offers any reward better than that which he offers.

What can those who are pressuring you to sin offer you? A temporary fix. A momentary pleasure. A bit of prestige or a bag of money. Nothing compared to the eternal life and the rewards of God. So stand firm in the faith. Let nothing move you.

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post time trial recovery

i needed some recovery miles this morning after yesterday's running and cycling workouts. i took a nice leisurely trek to wellington and back. i was only going to go out an hour and ten minutes and turn around, but when i was only a mile from the slate creek bridge at that time, i decided i could make it into town and still be home at a decent time. in the end, i made it home at almost exactly 7:30, my original planned ending time.

along the way, i heard, but did not see, four dogs. i saw, but did not hear, a skunk, a coyote, a hawk and an owl. oh, and lots of bugs. my arms and legs and chest are spotted black with the little boogers. (38.54 miles @ 16.0mph)

bernard's evil challenge - 2

i had to get to the start of a stretch of road that had 7.2 miles of un-stop-signed bliss, so i rode south to kansas highway 44. it took me 32'47" to make it out to the 8.5-mile mark.

it was 102 degrees out. the wind was from the south-southwest. the relative humidity was nothing to speak of at 28%. i had a little less than half my gatorade left at this point. 12 ounces for 7.2 miles of sheer suffering. have i mentioned how evil bernard is?

i once again had a bit of trouble on my start. my left cleat just didn't want to find it's home in the left pedal. i slipped once or twice before finally getting the two to make up. then i had to grind it out to get up to speed.

once i was rolling, the miles flew by. i was able to get up to 24mph quickly and hold it for a while. i dropped down to 23mph and then to 22mph as the incline steepened a bit. i picked up speed again on the flats and lost again on the next climb.

then came tracy hill. hardly a hill by kentucky standards, but this is kansas. i got up over 30mph on the second half of the descent. i stayed there for close to a mile.

when i hit the flat section between melvin tracy's and randy tracy's i started feeling the effects of the heat. i'd been trying to hydrate well, but there's not a lot you can do with 12 ounces of gatorade when it's 102 out. i pressed on over the river and up into town.

i hit the city limits at or a little past my limits. i was redlining, but i put the hammer down and finished. i looked at my time, did the math and shook my fist at evil bernard. i was in the lead! (my average for the TT was 23mph!)

after the time trial i drug myself home. it took me 3'00" to cover the 0.74 miles to my garage. i was beat. (16.44 miles @ 18.1mph)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

yes, my precious

the ridiculously clever folks at breakfast have invented the tweeting bike and sent it out to fight cancer, one tweet at a time.

officially launched on tuesday via the site yes i am precious, the latest inanimate object to take to the twitterverse will take its followers on a journey from coast to coast raising money for livestrong and the fight against cancer.

precious the bike will tweet its thoughts while being ridden by janeen mccrae along the transamerica trail. the journey began in yorktown, va., and mccrae and precious are now 640 miles into the trek to astoria, ore.

precious will detail its progression through the work of the tech savvy crew over at breakfast. the company have created a device that takes readings from various sensors, including temperature, humidity, grade, speed, pedal rotation, direction and GPS, and sends the results via text to the company's servers, passing through the ywitter api along the way to parse the text messages.

the system spits out a tweet automatically, but mccrae can also reach out to followers with the push of a button on her handlebars.

“most of the tweets are coming from the ‘brain’ that we built — that is, the rider has written a couple of hundred tweets that we’ve stored, each tweet has its own specific set of parameters that must be met," michael lipton, account director and partner at breakfast, explained to mashable. "for example, if she’s going down hill for 30 minutes straight in 90 degree heat, she may have set a tweet that says something like ‘coasting is easy but somehow I’m still sweaty.’ once that tweet is used, it is removed from the pool and can’t be reused, so if she hits that same criteria again a different message would be sent.”

though it's probably a lovely trip, precious isn't riding just for the pure joy of it. mccrae is trying to earn $4,262 (the number of miles on the transamerica trail) for her livestrong challenge team, team fatty. why this difficult cross-country ride? "it will be a hard journey, but much easier than the journey people affected by cancer have to take," wrote mccrae on her fundraising page.

to support the team and bask in the creative genius, follow precious here.

katie leavitt on tonic.com

3.16 miles in 34'06"

i ran at noon after the lady from WADA left with her urine and blood samples. silly people. they'll never catch me. they won't even find caffeine in their precious vials this time. i'm too sneaky. i didn't eat or drink anything after 9:00 last night. my pee's clean. (okay, that was probably more than you wanted to know.)

i started off with a five-minute walking warm up followed by six four-minute intervals...two minutes running, two minutes walking. i ran down to the river and back today for a pleasant change of scenery. the heat was pretty bad, but i survived. i came close, but didn't quite die.

the worst thing about running at midday is that more people see you. i'm trying to keep this running thing a secret, but it's not working. someone asked me about it this morning when i was helping them with a bike problem. "was that you i saw running the other night?" couldn't deny it.

after the six sets i walked most of my five-minute cool down. i'm not very good about following that part of the workout plan. i jogged two of the five blocks i had to go.

c'est la vie! je suis fini! (a little dark humor for my french speaking friends.)

Eat solid food...

“We have much to say about this, but it is hard to explain because you are slow to learn. In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.” (Hebrews 5:11-14, NIV)

It’s kind of funny. While I was reading this section recently, I got to feeling a bit woozy. I hadn’t really eaten much for breakfast and it was near noon. I decided I’d better get to the house and grab some solid food. When I had eaten, I felt much better and had the energy to keep going.

We need food. A baby needs its mother’s milk. An adult needs more than that.

In our spiritual life, we need to eat too. Jesus said, “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4, NIV)

We mature in our faith by taking in God’s word, both the written word and the living Word, Jesus Christ. By constant hearing, believing, praying, and obedience to both we grow up. And, the writer or Hebrews says, as we eat solid food – reading our Bibles and praying – we learn to distinguish between good and evil. The ability to tell the difference between teaching that’s from God and that which is from the devil is so important.

There are all sorts of cults out there who have sucked in those who have not grown up enough to discern error from truth. Thousands follow the deceptive teachings of Joseph Smith or Mary Baker Eddy or L. Ron Hubbard. They fall for the lies they’re spoon fed because they have not feasted on God’s word. They have not grown wise by listening to the Holy Spirit’s guidance through the written word. They are unable to tell the difference between good and evil because they are not well acquainted with the good.

They could be you if you do not eat solid food regularly. Study God’s word so that the love of the things of this world do not drag you away from God. Study God’s word so that easy teachings and ear-tickling doctrines do not entice you to sin. Study God’s word so that you will be mature, able to distinguish between good and evil.

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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The goal...

What is the goal of the Christian life?

Is it perfect attendance at church? If it is, not one of us is going to make it. I’ve missed church a time or two or three or four. You have too. Perfect attendance isn’t the goal of the Christian life. It’s commendable, to be sure, and beneficial too, but it’s not what we’re aiming for. There’s more to Christianity than just showing up.

Maybe the goal is to serve on as many committees as you can. What do you think? Is that what God wants from us? Can the purpose of the Christian life be boiled down to enduring…I mean enjoying a few thousand meetings? If joining committees is the chief aim of the saints, far too many are falling short.

If it the goal isn’t perfect attendance or committee membership, perhaps the goal is reading the Bible cover to cover. Genesis, no problem; it’s a story book. Exodus, a bit tedious at times, but fairly interesting narratives. Leviticus, anyone who can make it through that one is surely a saint. Then there’s Numbers. I’ll confess. I’m not sure I’ve ever really read every word of Numbers. Reading the Bible from page one to page one thousand, one hundred forty-five has is not the goal. There are complete atheists who’ve read the whole thing. If a heathen can do it, it can’t be all there is to living for Jesus.

So what is the main thing? Is it praying a lot? Is it doing good works? Is it memorizing John 3:16? No, no and no. The goal of the Christian life is maturity. That’s what God wants for you and for me and for every believer. God wants us to be fully developed followers of Jesus. To be complete. To be ready.

Isn’t that great?! I can’t think of any better news than that unless you count God’s desire for us to be saved as something separate. I don’t view the two as disconnected in the least. Being saved through faith in Jesus is part of the process of reaching maturity. It’s the beginning part, the first step toward the ultimate without which the goal cannot be attained. You have to be born before you can grow in maturity, right? Works that way in the physical realm and in the spiritual. Birth precedes growth.

So you’re born again into God’s family. You start your new life with him. You enjoy your new relationship. You start doing some of the things we talked about earlier – reading your Bible, praying, attending church more regularly, serving others. You learn new things all the time. You get excited when God answers your prayers. He’s alive! You’re alive! Life is good.

You’re whistling that merry tune, when along comes trouble. You don’t understand. Wasn’t the singing and shouting and fun supposed to last forever? You stop whistling and cry out to God, questioning him loudly, and he answers with peace in the midst of the storm. Your faith grows as you understand better the depths of Jesus’ promise to be with you to the very end of the age. You thank him despite your outward circumstances.

Some of you have experienced multiple times the triumphs and tragedies of life and have grown strong in your faith. You trust God implicitly. No matter what comes, you know he’ll see you through. Doubts seldom plague you. You understand what James is saying at the beginning of his letter to the church.

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:2-4, NIV)

Steadfast faith – or perseverance as James calls it here – is one sign of Christian maturity. Over the next few days, we’ll talk about a few other signs of maturity. For now, I want to urge you to ask God for his peace in the midst of your trials. I want to ask you to seek him for steadfast faith.


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no riding on the sidewalk!

while talking about city ordinances at a city planning meeting this morning, i ran across this beauty from 1902. $1 minimum fine for riding on the sidewalks! that same dollar was equivilant to $27.39 in 2008. the mayor remembered being chased as a kid. (click on the picture or here if you want a larger image for reading.)

ride more, write less

this morning i opted to ride more and write less, so here is my brief report. i decided after a hard ride and a hard run yesterday to ride a bunch of recovery miles. my chain popped off once and contador took advantage of it and blew past me. i nearly hit a deer once. i waved a two or three people i knew. i took a slight detour down to milan. said good morning to the guy opening the post office there. rode home. (24.77 miles @ 15.3mph)

Monday, August 9, 2010

4.34 miles in 45'30"

i wanted to stop so many times tonight. i just wanted to quit and give these stupid shoes away. any takers?

this week's first workout called for a five minute warm up followed by seven sets of 3 minutes running/2 minutes walking and a five minute cool down.

the first three-minute run was awful. my lungs tried coming out through my mouth. my heart would've been close behind had the lungs shown it the way. the two-minute walk was not enough to get things back under control.

i cried when i had to start running again. okay, i didn't literally cry, but i wanted to. i pushed through it and ran another three minutes and another three and another and another and another. i actually shouted "shut up!" out loud once. i was not going to let the voices win.

then suddenly it was over. i had made it through the last three-minute run and i could walk back home. i could cool down. i had five and half blocks to walk and five minutes to do it. no way i was going to make it in time, so i ran some more. i didn't have to run more, but i did. i ran a block, walked a block, then ran just over two blocks before walking to my front door...the victor!

take that stupid voices! and, no, the shoes aren't up for grabs. not yet.

just short

my eyes popped open at exactly 5:00 this morning. i rolled out of bed and pulled my stuff together in about 15 minutes. i hit the road around 5:20.

i headed west toward harper. i wasn't pushing overly hard at first, just keeping a steady rhythm. i focused on maintaining a consistent cadence over the flats and up the hills. felt pretty good.

i had to cross l'alpe d'anville on the construction side again. the light just isn't reliable enough. i don't trust it to keep a big truck from coming my way before i make it across.

on the other side, i kept pedaling toward harper. i snuck past stupid dog's house, my legs pounding out the same song they'd been singing all morning long.

i passed quickly through harper and headed south toward anthony. i was pushing harder now in an attempt to get to anthony before my cut off time. if i didn't make it, i'd have to turn around and head back the way i came.

i didn't make it.

i was still two or three miles out of anthony when the moment of truth came. i had to turn around or risk getting back to town late for my ems shift. that tends to be frowned on, so i reluctantly swung my bike around and headed back north toward harper.

the trip back home was hard. the wind was not as much help as i had planned on it being. i had to push myself to keep up the pace i needed to be back by 8:00. i felt alright, just not as good as i had earlier. i spun on, hoping to have time for an extra mile or two when i got back to town. i really wanted another half century.

alas, it was not to be today. i hit the edge of town with only five minutes to spare. there was no sense in riding more, so i followed the most direct path back to my driveway and pulled to a stop...only a little disappointed that i hadn't hit 50. (46.11 miles @ 18.3mph)

Saturday, August 7, 2010

the rest of the ride

after completing my 20-mile time trial, i let up on the pedals and cruised into cheney where i took a break at kabredlo's. the bank thermometer read 96. i went in and picked out a 32 oz gatorade and a 20 oz pepsi. i walked to the check out and prepared to pay. the clerk looked at me and said, "that pepsi isn't going to do you much good on a bike." i've heard such things from convenience store clerks before. usually i ignore them, but today...

i'm embarassed to say it, but i snapped back. i looked her in the eye and said, "i've been riding for years, ma'am. i think i know exactly what i need right now." wow!

i left the store and rested outside while i consumed my unneeded pepsi. it was delicious. i emptied the gatorade into my polar bottle and finished off the rest of it. then i went in and filled my gatorade bottle with water which i proceeded to dump over my head and body. it was cold and it felt good.

my body heat back under control, i headed out again. i rode north of cheney and turned west on old 54. i love this road. it's the same road i challenged when eric wimped out on me a few months ago. it was cool and rainy then. it was sunny and HOT today. i took a drink every mile so i wouldn't bonk.

i made it all the way and turned south into kingman. i'd been debating with myself for the last few miles. should i ride the extra three miles to hit 50 or just quit. until i hit the city limits, i couldn't decide. when i got there, i opted to go for it. i rode all the way through town and then turned around and headed back east with the wind at my back. it was an awesome cool down.
i had to go to the end of my sister's block and turn around to get the mileage right. a neighbor kid looked at me as i rode past. "nice bike," he yelled. "thanks!" i said.

having made my u-turn, i hit 50.00 miles exactly just after turning in to the driveway. i put the bike in the garage and went in to say hi and then take a cool shower.

gooooooal!

my parents are at my sister's this weekend, so i decided to ride up to their house. i left around 10:00 and headed north after a quick stop at argonia mart for an energy drink. NOS is so awesome!

at first i thought i'd take it easy, but the wind was at my back and soon felt good enough to increase my speed. i switched my computer to average speed and watched the tenths add up. before i'd gone 15 miles, my average was over 20mph. that's when i decided my 22mph goal was within reach. i put the hammer down and pushed on.

north of suppesville, i encountered a few hills. i was concerned that they'd slow me, but i rocketed over them. at 48'14" my target speed was reached. all i needed to do was maintain or increase it over the next few miles. i was so excited when the next tenth came and i was pretty sure i wouldn't lose enough to drop below 22mph.

not only did i not drop, i gained three more tenths. i nearly screamed as my odometer turned over to 20 miles. what i thought impossible at the beginning of the year was possible. i did it! goooooooal!

beat the skinny kid

in this picture of the 1984 state qualifying, school record breaking 4x400 relay team from ldf high school, is the skinny sprinter kid (guess which one) i'm trying to beat. he ran a 54-something 10K with only sprinter's training. grrr. i'm going to get you!

3.06 miles in 31'32"

the first time i ran it was 96 degrees. the second time, 84. this morning's run was done at 72. is it going to be 60 on monday? don't bet on it.

i'm pleased with my progress so far. i've cut 35 seconds off my minute per mile average. still, i've got a long way to go if i'm going to smoke that skinny kid that ran a 10K in 54 minutes in 1984.

i felt pretty good today after the first two minutes of running. they were awful, but the second two were easier. my workout plan for the day was similar to the first - five minute walking warm up then six sets of two minutes running/two minutes walking followed by a five minute walking cool down. i did all of that except for the last two and half minutes of the cool down. i was at home, so i stopped.

Friday, August 6, 2010

5 for 5000

i called my wife at 5 til 5 and said, "i need 5 for 5000. want to ride 5 when i get home at 5?" she said, "5 at 5 sounds good." so at 5 i came home and we went out for 5 and now i have 5000. 5 for 5000! that's a great trade. now i have 5000 for the first time since 2005. and now it's 5:55 and i need to take 5. oh, and our average was 9.5mph and my max speed was 14.5mph. crazy! (5.07 miles @ 9.5mph)

flying over the bumps

15 to 20 more minutes! if i'd had 15 to 20 more minutes, i could have ridden another five miles and put myself over 5000 miles for only the second time in my life. alas, i ran out of time. i shall have to grab those five miles some other time.

this morning's ride was a great one. i felt good from the time i started until the time i finished. somewhere along the way, i remembered what coach troy (or was it tony?) said about cresting hills and i put it into practice. i pushed over the top and only recovered on the way down. made a world of difference on my speed.

the first half of my ride took around 52 minutes. it was mostly uphill into a headwind. ugly stuff. i had forgotten how much elevation gain there is between the intersection of u.s. 160 and kansas 49. there's not a break in the upward slant for six miles!

the second half was up and down with a tailwind. i flew over the bumps. it was awesome! my legs seemed to get stronger with every mile. even as my mind tried to register "i'm tired" my legs kept churning away. i finished the second half in about 46 minutes. (i think i did my math right.) wish you could've been there with me when i crossed the finish line, a.k.a. my driveway. (30.65 miles @ 18.7mph)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

cycling rites of passage

cycling rites of passage (via bicycling magazine)...

01. realizing that the hill isn’t in the way; it is the way. (done) 02. you go from one pair of shorts to a dedicated drawerful. 03. being unable to sleep the night after you first shave your legs, because of the tingle of bedsheets against your skin. 04. when "thanks for the ride" goes from something you overhear to part of your lexicon. (done) 05. you see someone at the beach tanned low on the quads and biceps, and give him a nod of recognition. (done) 06. bonking so bad you don’t think you’ll be able to make it home. (done) 07. discovering how a convenience-store coke can resurrect the dead. (done) 08. starting and finishing a ride—the same one—in pouring rain. (done) 09. when you hang out at the bike shop and no one expects you to buy anything. 10. when your bike computer registers triple digits for one ride. (done) 11. clearing a log on a the trail. 12. you embrocate. 13. staying with the paceline long enough to take a turn at the front. (done) 14. you’re on the bike for the fifth straight day, and your butt doesn’t hurt. (done) 15. you try bibs and realize you can never go back to shorts. 16. you stop riding beside and behind the pack and instead ride inside of it—with no claustrophobia. (done) 17. you swing off the front of a paceline before you get tired. (done) 18. you blow a snot rocket without hitting your shoulder or leg—or the rider behind you. (done) 19. you notice that someone else has the chain grease on his right calf. (done) 20. you get stuck in your pedals and topple over at a stoplight. (done) 21. someone you introduced to the sport kicks your ass on a ride. 22. riding a bike through a big, congested city and feeling smarter than everyone else because you’re moving. 23. you wake up to find the sheets stuck to your road rash—and still feel excited about riding that day. (done) 24. your boss stops by to ask you to explain what’s happening in the tour de france. 25. you fix up your old bike to get someone into the sport. 26. wearing out your first set of tires. (done) 27. you ride through a pothole, and it’s no big deal. (done) 28. getting hopelessly lost—deliberately. 29. you stop midride to give your only spare tube to a stranded cyclist. 30. you realize you’re driving your car as if it’s a bike—drafting, looking for holes, getting away from the squirrelly guy. (done) 31. fixing a busted chain. 32. when you no longer have to stop to take off your jacket. (done) 33. feeling confident about taking off your jacket while riding—then catching the trailing sleeve in the rear wheel. (done) 34. The first time you crumple your race number. 35. planning a riding vacation. 36. seeing a sunrise from the saddle. (done) 37. wondering how the biggest local hill would rank on the tour de france climb classification. (done) 38. in your head, phil liggett narrates your ride. (done) 39. you got dropped, you flatted, bonked, got turned around—and when you got home you said you had a great ride. (done) 40. you roll through a patch of gravel and, without thinking, reach back to brush the crud off your tire with your palm. 41. a rider you respect says, "you were flying today." 42. rolling through a stop sign—and knowing it was the right thing to do. (done) 43. doored! 44. when you crest the summit of a climb, start down and realize you’ve gone the wrong way, but keep going anyway. 45. rubbing wheels—and staying up. 46. letting go of your kid’s seat and not having to grab it again. (done) 47. getting a bike stolen and being surprised at how deeply it hits you. (done) 48. cleaning the cassette with your old toothbrush. 49. sprinting the neighbor kids. (done) 50. chasing a rabbit down singletrack. (done) 51. falling asleep when you stop for a break on a mountain bike ride. 52. endo. (done) 53. telling someone which bike to buy. (done) 54. overcooking a turn. (done) 55. breaking a collarbone. 56. figuring out how to layer without overdressing. (done) 57. deciding which car to buy in part based on how it will carry your bikes. (done) 58. your first ride with a jersey instead of a t-shirt. (done) 59. riding on a day so cold the water in your bottle freezes. (done) 60. discovering that a shot of jameson in each bottle keeps the water fluid. 61. though you’re not clear on exactly how to do it and unsure of the outcome, you manage to fix your first flat. (done) 62. walking home in your cleats. (done) 63. getting so deep into the sport you think your helmet looks good. (done) 64. following a favorite pro racer—besides lance armstrong. (done) 65. finding out your favorite pro racer was doping. (done) 66. wrapping your bar tape so the handlebar plug stays in and no bare bar shows at the tricky bend at the brake hood. 67. naming a route. (done) 68. bumping elbows, then being relaxed enough to make a joke about it with the person next to you. 69. sitting in with the big weekend training race. 70. developing that "v" of muscle definition on the back of your calf. 71. espresso at the halfway point. 72. crashing and immediately asking, "how’s my bike?" (done) 73. fixing your bike with a rock. 74. paying for a coach. 75. figuring out that training advice doesn’t get much better than "ride lots." (done) 76. clacking into a rough tavern in cleats and spandex. 77. having a position on bartali vs. coppi. 78. throwing up after a sprint. 79. chasing back on after a flat. 80. winning a town-sign sprint and remembering it forever. 81. explicating your training in exquisite detail on a blog, then realizing nobody cares. (done) 82. watching the compressed co2 from your only canister shoot off into the air instead of into the tube. 83. matching your bar tape to your tire’s sidewall—then realizing on your next ride that your bike looks like it’s been decorated by a blind pimp. 84. riding someplace you’ve always driven. (done) 85. outsprinting a crazed dog. (done) 86. summiting an h.c. climb. 87. waving at a cyclist coming the other way and being ignored. (done) 88. getting annoyed by an uninvited wheel sucker. (done) 89. getting so fast you’re confident enough to ride slow. (done) 90. wondering if cycling matters too much. (done) 91. not caring if it does. (done) 92. surfing traffic on adrenaline and luck in one of the world’s 10 biggest cities. 93. sitting up, taking your hands off the bar on a downhill. (done) 94 . at the PTA meeting, looking around at all the fat parents. 95. dropping someone half your age. (done) 96. outclimbing someone half your size. (done) 97 . passing someone whose bike costs twice as much as yours. (done) 98. looking inside the bottle you’ve been using all season, seeing mold. (done) 99. dismissing what used to be your favorite cycling magazine because it keeps repeating topics. 100. reading the rider. (done) 101. coming home from europe with a cobblestone in your luggage. 102. finding out no one makes your favorite handlebar-bend anymore. 103. riding down a trail you couldn’t safely walk. (done) 104. telling the joke, "God wishes he was eddy merckx." 105. cheating a crosswind by joining an echelon. (done) 106. feeling superstrong, then turning around for the ride back and realizing you had a tailwind. (done) 107. pedaling the brooklyn bridge, toward manhattan, at night. 108. being the person whose bike squeaks drive everyone nuts. (done) 109. reading a rites of passage list and finding that your own favorite one is missing.

2.85 miles in 30'32"

i decided to run at noon since it was cooler - 84 as opposed to 96. i walked for five minutes to warm my legs up then took off on my first of seven sets which consisted of running for one minute, then walking for two.

since i was running for a shorter time i pushed myself a bit harder. i felt pretty good most of the time. i'm pleased that i made it around most of the town...and don't tell the people at couch to 10K, but i ran an extra minute late in the workout. shhhh!

i'm also excited to announce that i moved up from 116th place to 99th in the only dailymile running challenge i'm involved in!

saturday i'm back to two minutes running, two minutes walking. only six sets though, so it shouldn't be too tough.

not exciting

this morning's slow recovery ride was so not exciting. i rode around the outskirts of town. i rode up and down the streets of the northeast quarter of town. i pulled into my driveway. that's it. (6.00 miles @ 11.0mph)

pro cycling in colorado!

DENVER - Top-level international bicycle racing will return to Colorado next summer after a 23-year hiatus.
Tour de France legend Lance Armstrong announced Wednesday that a seven-day race, called the Quiznos Pro Challenge, will happen Aug. 22-28, 2011.

"I can tell you the European riders - the best European riders - will be lined up to come to this event," Armstrong said.

Colorado has not hosted a major professional bike tour since the Red Zinger Bicycle Classic/Coors Classic, which ran from 1976 to 1988.

Armstrong, who lives part-time in Aspen, said he got the "wacky idea" to revive the race on a training ride last year. He pitched the idea to Gov. Bill Ritter, who is an avid cyclist.

Ritter and Armstrong made the announcement Wednesday at the state Capitol to a crowd of hundreds, many who wore bike jerseys and took a ride with Armstrong after the announcement.

Organizers have not chosen a race course yet. It will likely begin or end in Denver. The remaining host cities will be announced in the coming months, said Joe Moller, general manager of the race.

Southwest Colorado would be a perfect place to take the tour, said Ed Zink, organizer of the Iron Horse Bicycle Classic.

"Certainly it's very exciting news, and communities like Durango that have a well-established cycling infrastructure should be able to help," Zink said.

Several Colorado towns have experience with major cycling events, and they can recruit volunteers to staff the race, Zink said.

"I think we can help mobilize the resources in Durango if this corner of the state is chosen as part of the route. And it should be," Zink said.

The renewal of the race will be a boost for American cycling, said Steve Johnson, head of USA Cycling.

"Future American champions will be on podiums around the world because they saw this event come through their hometown," Johnson said.

USA Cycling and the International Cycling Union (UCI) - the same organization that handles the Tour de France - will sanction the Colorado race.

The Colorado race will be a UCI Category 1 event, meaning it will attract the top international teams, Johnson said.

The Denver-based sandwich chain Quiznos will be the main sponsor. Additional funding will come from the Colorado Tourism Office, Ritter said.

"We think the tourism office (spending) is absolutely defensible given the kinds of tourism opportunities that will be because of this race," Ritter said.

The Colorado Tourism Office has not set a budget for the event yet, said spokeswoman Carly Grimes.

A Quiznos spokeswoman did not say how long the sponsorship contract would last.

"Our intention is to make this absolutely a long-term event," said Ellen Kramer, chief communications officer for the restaurant chain.

The Colorado race is one of just two elite-level stage races scheduled for next year in the United States. The other one is the Tour of California.

Colorado has "certainly some of the best geography anywhere in the world for cycling," Ritter said.

The defending champion of the Coors Classic, Davis Phinney, attended Wednesday's announcement. Phinney and his wife, Olympic gold medalist Connie Carpenter, helped Ritter make plans to create the race.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

i made me do it

not sure what i was thinking when i decided to try a 20-mile time trial less than 12 hours after my first real running workout in 26 years. there must be a short circuit somewhere inside my skull...or maybe it's those evil shoes. hmmmm.

i rode to harper for my warm up. 16.25 miles in 1:00'10". i rode a long warm up because i wanted to avoid any stupid uphill finishes or nasty hills in the middle of my effort. i wanted a course that was as flat as flat can be.

my warm up done, i clipped my right foot in and pushed my crank forward. i pedaled a couple strokes, then fumbled with my left cleat. i couldn't get it to "click" for me. i probably lost 5 seconds there. grrr.

after my less than stellar start, i was able to pick up speed and ride hard for several miles and then i started "bleeding" tenths. i was a bit sore from running last night, but i'm not sure that hurt my time very much. it was kind of crazy to time trial only two days after my first attempt at bernard's evil challenge.

i spent the second half of my ride mad at that stupid computer that told me repeatedly, "you're losing ground. you're slowing down."

"SHUT UP, COMPUTER!!"

well, i made it. my 20-mile time was 1:00'05". after that, i cooled down for 1.25 miles. took me 4'45". i'm tired. i hope i can improve my time later. until then, i'm ready to rest. (37.50 miles @ 18mph)

aiming high?

let me talk about goals here. i have a couple. if i didn't, i wouldn't be running.

first goal: complete the inaugural run for missions 10K on 10/31/10 in one piece. that shouldn't be too hard. i don't often have body parts flying off.

second goal: finish the inaugural run for missions 10K on 10/31/10 in less than 54 minutes. don't know if that's aiming too high or too low. i picked 54 minutes for only one reason: that was my finishing time for the first (and only) 10K i ran in high school. i want to crush that skinny guy who had the audacity to run a 10K without training at all.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

3.47 miles in 37'49"

the shoes made me do it. evil shoes! i put my new running shoes on tonight and did the unthinkable...i went out for my first serious run since high school. crazy!

i'm using a 13-week couch to 10K program i found on the web to train for a 10K i want to run at the end of october. since there are only 12 weeks until race day, i decided to skip week 1 and dive into week 2's first workout.

it looked simple enough on the computer screen. warm up with a 5 minute walk. then run for 2 minutes and walk for 2 minutes seven times. then cool down with another 5 minute walk. piece of cake, right? piece of upchucked cake!

okay, i didn't puke, but i sure felt like i wanted to a couple of times. thankfully, that passed and i almost enjoyed parts of my run.

one more interesting thing i noticed: when you're walking time runs fast. when you're runnning, time slows down. so if you want to live longer, run? (that makes NO sense!)

electing to ride

election day has finally arrived and i elected to go out for a nice recovery ride this morning after yesterday's torturous time trial. when i woke this morning and stepped outside, i wasn't sure i was in kansas. there was NO wind! it was beautiful out. 75 degrees and - did i mention this? - NO wind!

i rode west toward danville, keeping my cadence as steady as my slowly beating heart. i didn't want to waste yesterday's hard effort by overexerting myself today.

i rode on the "construction" side of the danville overpass and pedaled on past evil dog's house. his replacement - found out the mutt's name is travis - came out and ran along with me for a bit. (that's for a bit, not a bite!) i yelled at him, "travis, go home! bad dog!" and he turned tail and ran.

i continued on to the next intersection, then turned around and headed back. the eastward journey was much the same as the westward. slow easy pedaling. up and over l'alpe d'anville on the "construction" side. (noticed broken glass on the bridge platform this time. glad it didn't hit it in the dark.) over the plains and around the correction curves to home.

a good ride. i elect now to shower and go vote! (18.02 miles @ 16.4mph)

solo century?


mike is mad! eric selfishly rode 100 miles without him. will they work it out? hope you enjoy this first installment of the NEW eric and mike.

Monday, August 2, 2010

no umph

i woke up this morning without an ounce of umph in me. i looked at the clock...5:00. i rolled over and went back to sleep. the next thing i knew it was 6:00. i almost stayed in bed, but i knew i'd hate myself later if i did, so i put my feet on the floor and stumbled to the bathroom to dress.

i got on my bike around 6:15 and half-heartedly pushed the pedals around and around and around. slowly the beating of my heart and the rhythmic expanding and contracting of my lungs brought life to my mind. that's when i remembered bernard's time trial challenge. i should've shoved the thought from my head, but i didn't. instead i let it fester until it was a full blown idea. i decided i could give it a shot.

so at 4.1 miles out of town, my warm up done, i turned around, stopped and prepared to launch myself. that's where this narrative leaves off. you'll have to read my separate post to see how the time trial went. all you'll get from me right now is that the 10.58 miles i rode to cool down after the race against the clock were not fast. what little umph i had was gone. my only joy was the slight tailwind that pushed me over the final seven miles of cool down. (14.68 miles @ 16.9mph)