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Dec 31, 2010

New book - no running - Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everyone!  No running for me today since it's my rest day.  I got a new book about running.  The best part about it was that it was free - I had a $10 off coupon and thanks to Border's Bucks($5), it ended up being free!  It's called Extreme Running.  It talks about extreme races that are throughout the world.  It looks very interesting and there are lots of colorful pictures of the areas as well.  The races discussed are:

Europe
Ultra-Trail Du Tour Du Mont-Blanc
Verdon Canyon Challenge
Transalpine-Run
Spartathlon

Africa
Marathon Des Sables
Comrades Marathon
Le Grand Raid De La Reunion
Trans 333

North America
Badwater Ultramarathon
Pikes Peak Marathon
Wasatch Front 100 miler
Yukon Arctic Ultra

South America
Jungle Marathon
Atacama Crossing
Inca Trail Marathon

Asia
Everest Marathon
Gobi March
Lake Baikal International Ice Marathon

Oceania
Kepler Challenge
Te Koutaewa Challenge
Bogong To Hotham Trail Run

Polar
Antarctica Marathon
Antarctic Ice Marathon
North Pole Marathon




It should be a great read.  I'll let you know if there is one that I would actually consider after reading this book.  Seriously, though, I just bought it because it looked interesting to read about these crazy people!

Has anyone done one of these races or is going to?  I believe Johann was planning Comrades this year?

Have a great day and......Keep Running!

Dec 30, 2010

Last Run of 2010

Well today I ran my last run of the year.  Tomorrow is a rest day.  I did the 3 miles I had on my schedule so it was an easy run as well.  Today was very unusual weather - it was 35 degrees, which is warmer than it has been.  It was raining slightly but not enough to stop me from going.  Chris K would have been proud!  Well, probably not, it was really only a mist so I really can't compare it to his crazy run yesterday.  I'm a wimp(see my quote of the day) when it comes to rain AND cold but I was not going to have my last run of the year be on the treadmill.  That means I have only done 2 treadmill runs since winter started.  Now if I can just get through the next 3 months without the dreadmill, everything should be great.

I will also be signing up this weekend for the Detroit Half Marathon for Oct 2011.  This is the race that goes over the bridge into Canada and back through the tunnel into Michigan.  I ran the relay last year and it was fun but did not get to run the bridge so I'm doing the half this year.  It's amazing the price increases - $45 now or if you wait until after September 14 the price goes up gradually to $105.  I figured I'm running it so might as well get the best price.  Do you always sign up early to get the discount?

I started thinking about how much people run on these running blogs and its just amazing to me!  I ran/walked/biked the equivalent of going from Detroit, MI to Key Largo, FL but I know many of you have done much, much more and it's unbelievable.

How far did you run this year?

Have a great day and......Keep Running!

Dec 29, 2010

Good run and 2010 mileage totals

I'm on vacation this week so I have been less motivated to run.  You would think if you didn't need to get up at 5am to run that you would have more motivation?  Sleeping in until 8:30am makes for more time to think about whether to run or not.  I did run today and got in the 6 miles that I was supposed to do according to my plan.  Yesterday was a really tough run.  So tough that I really did not feel like running so I negotiated with myself.  I said to myself, if I get up and weigh myself and I'm less than 134(believe me I don't need to lose anymore weight) that I would skip today's run.  Why I used my weight to determine the run is beyond me.  Anyway, I get on the scale this morning.......134 even.  Shoot.  I need to run today now.

I'm glad that I got out there but it was a chore to get up and out.  I actually had a pretty good run and felt much better.  There was no wind today so it made it a much easier run than yesterday.  Now I'm happy I did it, otherwise, I probably would have been disappointed that I did not run.

Today, I went through my mileage to see what I did for 2010.  I started keeping track of miles(manually then in October on Dailymile) when I decided that I was going to run a half marathon.  I decided this on March 8th so I don't know what I did for January and February because before then I just ran and walked until I didn't feel like doing it anymore(which was usually for an hour).  Here's how things broke down for 2010(including a 3 mile run for tomorrow to finish out the year):

March - 44 miles running; 57 miles walking
April - 81 miles running; 66 miles walking
May - 105 miles running; 56 miles walking
June - 122 miles running; 37 miles walking
July - 133 miles running; 40 miles walking
Aug - 160 miles running; 34 miles walking
Sept - 160 miles running; 28 miles walking
Oct - 96 miles running; 2 miles walking
Nov - 87 miles running; 6 miles walking; 22 miles biking
Dec - 109 miles running; no walking; 36 miles biking

Total miles running - 1,097 miles running; 326 miles running; 58 miles biking

Total miles of activity - 1,481

I learned several things over this first year of running:

1) I was over prepared for my half marathon in October(It did help me get that 1:45 time though)
2) I'm surprised I did not crash and burn sooner.  I was sometimes running 8 miles three times during the week and then doing a 12 mile long run.  What was I thinking?
3) Just because they say it's Ok to increase you running each week by 10% doesn't mean you should continue to increase - this is what I did before I couldn't do it anymore - more stupidity.
4) Biking is good crosstraining and will be continued
5) Stretching is a very important part of running and should not be skipped.  While I did stretch after each run, it was for like 5 minutes.  Certainly not enough(for me anyway)
6) I ran too much during the Detroit Marathon Relay(16 miles) which then led to IT band problems.  You can see how my mileage went down dramatically in Oct, Nov and I'm slowly building up again.  Ah, the days where I could just run without worrying about this are over.  :(
7) The foam roller is your friend; this helped solve my IT band issues along with more stretching(hopefully)
9) I was a running fool; the week of my first 10 miler race in June, I ran 7 on Tuesday, 7 on Wednesday, 6 on Thursday, Rest on Friday and the race on Saturday.  What the hell was I thinking!  Not about tapering - that's for sure!  The funny thing is I ran that very hilly race in about an 8 minute pace too - insane!  Even the week of my half marathon, I ran 8 the Sunday before, 7 on Tuesday, 6 on Wednesday - stupidity!
9) With as many miles as I did, I probably could have run a full marathon in October but at least I had enough common sense not too.  It really would have been stupid to run a full when in March, I only was doing 44 miles in a month!
10) Following a plan by an accomplished marathoner(like Higdon) is a good thing and you will not get burnt out.  I will be following the intermediate plan for Higdon for my marathon in May.

Have a great day everyone and.....Keep Running!

Dec 28, 2010

More running and biking & a great surprise!

Today, I got a wonderful surprise.  I was honored to be Tuesday's Hero on Christi's blog, Pedestrian Runner Please check out here awesome blog(and not just because she did this for me but because she has some really great stuff on it).  This really is an honor to have inspired an accomplished athlete like Christi.  For me, the blog was all about accountability.  I figured to keep me accountable, I would tell people about it and it would keep me motivated.  That is why when I signed up for my first marathon in May I told as many people - I can't back out now!  So what all this means is the real heroes are all of you that follow my blog.  You help keep me motivated more than you know.  Thanks again Christi - your post today just gave me that much more motivation to keep moving forward with my training!

Ok, with all that said, yesterday I did a 10 mile bike ride on my exercise bike - jeez that's boring.  I can't wait until Spring so I can get out on the real bike.  I keep telling myself that it will help my overall fitness and my running as well.  I finished at a pretty good pace - around 17 mph.  I think that's good?  I also really want to start swimming but the only pool option is the expensive health club down the street.  I can't commit to that yet but am looking for other options.  When I was growing up, the high school pool used to have open swim so I'm looking into that.

Today I did a 6 mile run that was on the schedule.  Did I mention I hate the wind?  Another windy day running out there with a wind chill of 10 degrees.  Really, if there was a way to stop the wind, winter running would be awesome overall.  Finished the run in about 49 minutes.

Have a great day and......Keep running!



Dec 27, 2010

2010 Year in review video

video

My "first year of running" video.  I hope you enjoy it.  Running has changed my life!

Have a great day and........Keep Running!

Dec 26, 2010

A couple good runs and great Christmas

Well, we had a great Christmas this year and everyone was happy with that they got.  I also had a couple of good runs.  My run on Christmas eve after work was really fast.  I managed to average a 7:48 pace for five miles.
5 miler!
My splits on this were:
7:34, 7:38, 7:49, 7:56, 8:00

That's the fastest I have run since snow/ice hit the roads.  There actually was not much snow and ice left on the road(although I almost lost it on the ice once) so I was significantly faster that I have been over the past few weeks.  We celebrated Christmas eve with my side of the family that evening.  When I finished the run, I thought, wow, that was a strong run.  Then....that evening when I was sleeping, my legs felt like bricks.  Obviously a sign that I had run way too fast especially since I have not been used to that speed.  Stupid, I know.  I had planned on running my long run on Christmas day since we are not celebrating Christmas with the wife's family until today.  I just could not get out there - I needed the rest.  My usual rest day is Friday but I decided to run so it was not a big deal to take Saturday for a rest day.  The plan was to run on Saturday and then run on Sunday but whatever.

This morning I did an eight mile long run and felt good but it was REALLY windy out.  I really hate running when it's like that.  The wind did seem to be going in one direction so at least only part of the run was really hard.  The roads also iced up since it was so windy out.  To sum up the run, it was Cold(10 degrees with wind chill), icy and windy.  I surprise myself sometimes that I get out there but again, my alternative is 8 miles on a treadmill and I just can't do it.  The best thing about today and Christmas eve was that I could run in daylight.  Fortunately, I'll be off from work for the next week so I don't have to run in the dark all week which is nice.  I was all over the place on this run:
8 mile long run(Did I mention the wind?)
Here's a picture from Christmas eve.  My Dad has this tradition of taking a photo with the family with Santa hats on:
Detroit Runner's Family!
Here's one of me happy with my Christmas gifts.  I got a new book, Unbroken(got it from a list from another blogger) that I wanted to read and I also got a new water bottle.  Its the Fuel Belt 10 oz bottle - great for some shorter runs without the bulk of a larger bottle.  I also got a picture notepad with "DAD" written on it from the son since his school helps kids with gifts for the family.
Gifts - Yahoo!
It was a nice lazy day(since I didn't run) and basically watched TV all day, read my book, watched Toy Story 3 and ate!  Usually I go to the in-laws but as I said we are doing that later today.  The kids were very happy - the son probably got a year's worth of books he wanted(yes he wanted books!) and the daughter got the makeup and money that your typical teen wants.
The son

The daughter
No pictures of the wife as I didn't think she would appreciate being shown on the internet when we had just woke up and went right to opening gifts with no prep to look decent.  You can see her in the Santa hat picture though!  The best thing about this year is that there was no need to return any gifts we got.  We will be going out in the shopping madness on Monday to try and see if we can find a new Christmas Tree although I'm not sure I really want one yet but we'll see.

Have a great day and.....Keep Running!

Dec 24, 2010

Merry Christmas

I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas!





Have a great Holiday and.......Keep Running!

Dec 23, 2010

Todays workout and a Turkey Loaf

Before I start, I wanted everyone to know that I usually comment on your comments at the end of the day.  I try to post my blog in the morning before work(and right after running) and then sometime in the evening, I make comments so if your comment was a question, just go back to the day before and you should see my answer.

Thursday is always a longer workout for me.  I do my weights workout on the bowflex for about 30-40 minutes and then I did a 3 mile run.  I barely have enough time to warm up with a 3 mile run but that is what's on the Higdon schedule so I'm sticking to it.  Actually I get warmed up from lifting weights first I suppose.  I figured in my shortest run of the week in with the weights so it would not tire me out too much.  Today's run was really windy!  I always do my weights first.  "They"(who?) say that you should do what it more important to you first but I just cannot run 3 miles and then do weights.  I feel exhausted tired after my run and just cannot get myself to workout with weights after.  What do you do when you need to run and also lift weights on the same day?  Or do you only lift weights on days that you do no other exercise?  Or perhaps you don't lift weights?  One thing I can say for sure, lifting weights helped me lose weight when I wanted to.  Now I use it to keep my body tone.  Well, as tone as it's going to get after losing so much weight.  I feel like I have a jelly roll for a stomach.  I can feel those abs under it but will never be able to see them without surgery and that is never going to happen.

Also, here's a great dinner that my wife made the other day.  It's turkey Loaf from the American Heart Association cookbook that she cooks from religiously.  Very easy to make and tastes great and also good for more than one dinner too!  Good as leftovers as well.  This recipe serves 8.  I'm not a fan of meatloaf but I love this.  It's great with a good veggie sidedish and a salad.  Hope you try it and like it.

Recipe:
Vegetable Oil Spray(optional)
4 slices whole-wheat bread
1/4 cup fat-free milk
2 pounds lean ground turkey breast, skin discarded before grinding(we buy extra lean ground turkey to save us time - make sure it's extra lean though)
1 cup grated or finely chopped onion
1 cup canned no-salt-added stewed tomatoes, crushed, undrained
1 medium rib of celery, diced
1/2 medium red bell pepper, chopped
Egg substitute equivalent to 2 eggs, or 2 large eggs(we use egg substitute)
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
1 teaspoon seeded and finely minced fresh jalapeno, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons no-salt-added ketchup

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Lightly spray a 10 1/2 x 5 1/2 x 2 1/2 inch loaf pan with vegetable oil spray, or us a nonstick loaf pan.

In a food processor or blender, process the bread into fine crumbs.  Transfer to a shallow bowl.  Stir in the milk.  Let the crumbs soak for 5 minutes.

In a large bowl, gently but thoroughly stir together the remaining ingredients except the ketchup.

Drain the bread crumbs and squeeze out any excess milk to form a paste.  Stir into the turkey mixture.  Spoon into the loaf pan.  Spread the ketchup over the loaf.

Bake, uncovered, for 1 hour 30 minutes, or until cooked through.  Let stand for 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

The best part - nutritional facts(I have a hard time eating things when I don't know what's in them):
calories 195; protein 31 g; carbohydrates 13 g(fiber 2g, sugars 5g); cholesterol 77 mg; total fat 1.5g(saturated 0.5g, polyunsaturated 0.5g, monounsaturated  0.5g); sodium 251 mg
Dietary exchange:  1/2 starch; 1 vegetable, 3 1/2 very lean meat

So there you have it.  Enjoy!
Turkey Loaf!


Have a great day and......Keep running!

Dec 22, 2010

Daily Run and Detroit Marathon Pictures

Well today I had a five miler on the agenda for today - which I did.  Do you ever notice that sometimes you can feel so strong on a run and then sometimes you just feel so weak.  My times were so slow today compared to yesterday.  Yesterday, I felt like I could run five more miles.  Today, I had a hard time getting through five miles.  I'm not sure if it's my mind that gets in the way or my body?  Yesterday was the first day I ever took my camera on my daily run.  I was looking forward to seeing where I was and taking a picture at every split.  Perhaps I did not think about running as much as where I would be when I stopped to take a picture?  There was really nothing to look forward to today except the finish :).  I guess we all have those days.  I rarely have a hard time getting out of bed in the morning to run because I always feel better knowing I ran.  I still feel better today than if I had not done it too.

Today I thought I would leave you with some pictures of the Detroit Marathon Relay I did in October. We had a great time doing this.
Running buddy, me, brother-in-law, friend, sister-in-law

My leg started in Canada - great skyline picture of Detroit

Another skyline of Detroit

In USA/Canada Tunnel - sorry I was running!

Had to get a picture of the crossover back to USA!

This is coming out of the tunnel into Detroit - GM Headquarters

Cool sign showing the split - you can't miss that one!

This is Belle Isle

Belle Isle again with Detroit in the background

After we finished with our medals!
So if you are ever in the Detroit area, I personally would recommend doing the Detroit marathon.  My plan is to do the half marathon there in 2011.

Have a great day everyone and ..........Keep Running!

Dec 21, 2010

Morning Run with Camera

Today a five miler was on the schedule for today.  I did not crosstrain yesterday because I had to give some blood for an insurance test and could not eat or workout that morning.  Today's run felt great.  While I don't like to skip crosstraining, the rest really helped my legs and so I felt very strong on today's run. I also added duct take to my shoes upon the suggestion of Lee at Lee On the Run.  Thanks for the suggestion - it kept my toes from falling off from being so cold!

Today I also brought my camera on my run.  I put it in my trusty SPIbelt and it worked great!  Instead of taking random pictures throughout the run, I decided I would take a picture at each mile split no matter where I was in the run.  As you will see, it's not too exciting of a run.  I try to stay on the cleared road so it has limited me somewhat of where I run, at least during the week.  I only ever see one guy walking his dog in the morning when I run and I happen to see him today but no picture of him.  I didn't want him to think I was a freak because really, who takes a camera on a run at 5:30am?  Actually, who really runs at 5:30am and in this weather.  By the way, it was 27 degrees this morning and I actually was very comfortable.  I guess I'm getting used to the weather now.  So here it is, my run in pictures:
Start in my garage with Duct Tape (+1 on uses for it)

Mile 1 split near drainage ditch

Split 2 in strip mall near the gym I pass

Split 3 on a nice lighted road coming up

Split 4 on the same lighted road coming back - I wish all roads were like this.

Split 5 - worried someone would think I'm stealing this car!

Back home!
So there you have it, my morning run.  Unfortunately, it does not get any more exciting than that.  Perhaps this weekend, I'll bring the camera on my run so you can actually see something!

Have a great day and .............Keep Running!

Dec 20, 2010

I've been tagged!

Well I've only been doing this blogging stuff since November and I've been tagged by Adam over at I am Boring.  Thanks Adam - I'm started to feel like part of the crowd.  By the way, if you didn't know it, he's doing a virtual race called the "Freeze your Thorns off Virtual 5k" so go to his site and sign up for it.  It should be lots of fun!

Here are the five questions that I was tagged with:

1) What are you most fond of accomplishing in 2010?
My most fond accomplishment for 2010 was completing my first Half Marathon in October.  Not only did I finish it in 1:45:55(which was 15 minutes faster than my goal), I also raised over $2,800 for Children's Hospital of Michigan for the Neurology Department.  There was a doctor that has helped my son over the years and I wanted to give back to them for their help.
Meeting Frank Shorter at my first Half!

Floating to the finish at my first half!
2) What are your running goals for 2011?
My main goal for 2011 will be to complete my first Full Marathon.  I'll be doing the Bayshore Marathon up in Traverse City, Michigan in May.  Since it's my first, I'm freaked out.  Fortunately, I'll be doing it with a running buddy who has a similar pace and goal so it will be nice to do our first marathon together.  My goals are 1) finish, 2) finish in 4:30, 3) finish in 4 hours if feeling good. Besides that, I usually try to do about a race per month and have added a few new races this year to the mix.  If anyone will be doing this marathon, please let me know.  It would be great to meet some of you.  Here's a map of the marathon course:

Out and back mostly by water!
3) What is your favorite race?
Well, I just started racing this year(and really just started running in 2009) so I'm not sure I have a favorite race yet but if I had to pick one that I have done, I would go with The Crim 10 mile race in Flint, MI.  This race was amazing because there were over 15,000 runners and was incredibly organized.  It was also not an easy course so the hills gave you quite a challenge but the crowds were awesome!  I also love the medal that came with it and the awesome shirt as well.
Crim tech shirt 2010

Me in Green!

Awesome Medal; the red,white & blue gets me every time

4) What is your favorite holiday guilty pleasure?
Wow, this is a hard one to nail down.  I love so many things and many of them are the reason I started running - to lose weight!  LOL.  Now I do it for fun(running that is).  Anyway, I'd have to say that my guilty pleasure is cookies!  I just love cookies.  My wife makes them, my daughter is now getting into them and my Mom makes tons of them every year.  I probably have 6-7 favorites.  I do my best to steer clear of them as much as I can so I don't get back into old bad habits.  I'm not going back to the old lifestyle ever!
 
5) What was your most embarrassing running moment?
Unfortunately I don't have any crazy stories that are embarrassing from running.  I guess the most embarrassing thing that I did this year was over do it at the Detroit Marathon Relay.  I ran my leg, walked a leg with my brother in law and ran a leg with my sister in law.  I was not prepared for that much running and ended up hurting my IT Band that took me from 14 mile long runs to starting over again.  Beginners stupidity I guess.

So that's it.  You know a little more about me and my running adventures.  Here are a few fellow bloggers that I have tagged to learn a little more about them.

1) Lee from Lee on the Run because she was one of my first followers
2) Stephanie from In Steph's Shoes because she is a fellow Michigander and can kick my butt!
3) Lisa from Early Morning Run because I love her New York experiences
4) Jennifer from One Step at a Time because she has just figured it out

Dec 19, 2010

Great dinner last night and good run today

The wife made a great dinner last night.  A new recipe from the American Heart Association cookbook.  It was tilapia fish with a lime marinade, asparagus and a baked potato.  Yum, it was good.  If you did not know it already, tilapia is a very inexpensive fish that is easy to prepare and you can find loads of recipes for it(or substitute it for more expensive fish in a recipe)  My wife says nobody cares about what we ate and perhaps she is right but if you are interested, let me know as I can start putting recipes with my posts if you are interested.  They also include all nutritional values so you know what you are eating.

A great meal!
This morning I also went for a five mile run.  It was the first time I used my Goretex trail running shoes.  I wanted to do a shorter run for my first run in them.  I have a pair of Salomon XA Comp 5's.   Based on only my first run, I can tell you they are comfortable AND warm.  Yes, my feet were not freezing and it was nice.  Not that my feet are always cold with my regular running shoes, but these keep your feet nice and comfy!  I'm not sure how these would be in the summertime because they might get a little warm so we'll have to wait and see in the summertime.  These shoes have the quick laces which I like but they take some getting used to

I started my run and about a mile into it the excess lace was coming out and bouncing everywhere.  There is a little lip on the shoe tongue to stuff it in there but it did not seem to stay there so I put it under one the lace near the front of my shoes.  That did the trick.  The laces also keep your feet snug without being too tight as I sometimes do with my other shoes and also not double knots - actually no knots at all.  Just pull the lace tight and push the plastic holder down and that's it - really easy.  I can certainly see the advantage to running in these in the winter and when it's wet.  Here's a few pictures to get an idea of what they look like.  I will let you know as I test them as winter conditions worsen.  Frankly, I did not need to wear them today but wanted to try them out.  I purposely went through sidewalks which were snow covered to see how they will stand up and they did a great job.  It also slowed me down since there was so much snow.
You can sort of see the Goretex lining on left inside

Great treads for trails/snow covered roads

Awesome lacing system - pull and tuck

Rear of shoe

Good toe kick for rocks
Not that I need all the functions on this shoe, I rarely run on trails but may start to do that more now.

What do you use in wintery conditions on your feet?  I'd be interested to hear what others do.

Have a great day and......Keep Running!

Dec 18, 2010

Thinking about giveaway?

So I have been reviewing blogs for the past month and there sure are a lot of giveaways!  I'm curious how people do this?  Do they use their own money?  Do they get donations from companies?  Looks like many are given to people from companies.  How do they get these giveaways?  I'd like to try it but using my own funds?  I'm not sure.  Perhaps I need more followers for a give away?  Would you follow a blog just because there are giveaways?  I'm sure companies give this stuff away for a free review and more advertising but I only have so many followers?  Why would a company do this if the audience is not large?  I know - lot's of questions but I like to learn about things before I start doing them.

Another giveaway $150 see link

Here another giveaway for Run to the Finish Blog.  It's awesome!  Good luck!

http://runtothefinishgiveaways.blogspot.com/2010/12/150-visa-gift-card-how-to-be-10.html

Contest at Running and Rambling Blog

Hi everyone.  You need to check out this awesome giveaway on Running and Rambling's blog.  I just started following him today.  Check out the link to enter as well.  Great prize - New balance shoe giveaways.  I really, really want these!

http://www.runningandrambling.com/2010/12/new-balance-mt101-giveaway.html

2010 Medals

Today's run was a seven mile long run.  It was really cold out there.  My water bottle froze up at mile six so no water the last mile.  Not a bad run but much of the run was running on icy roads so I had to be careful but there were some spots that were clear.  What I really need is a good snow to cover the roads better and give me a little traction and then I can use my yaktrax or trail shoes.

You guys saw my race pictures for 2010 a couple days ago.  Here are the medals that I earned in 2010 for the races that gave medals.  Now I say earned not because I placed at top age group or overall, I just finished and for me that is earned.  What do you guys do with your medals?  I have mine hanging over my desk in my home office for daily motivation.  I really need to get something to hang them all together so they look nice on the wall or something.  I read someone's blog that actually made a case for her medals which was an awesome idea.  It looked great after it was completed.  These photos are my attempt at a little bit more professional photography too.  I made a homemade light tent from a photography website so that I could take better pictures of things that I show on the site. 

Homemade light tent
 Any suggestions to make the pictures better, please let me know.  Some of you have fantastic photography skills!  Keep in mind I'm only working with a Panasonic DMC-ZR1 digital camera so it's nothing fancy.  No DSLR's for me, sorry, can't afford one at this time but would love to have one.  I figured that I could learn a little about photography and use what I have.  I think the pictures turned out much better than what I have been taking.  It's amazing what a little change in lighting can do for the pictures.

Anyway, I did four races that gave medals:
1) The Solstice Run in Northville, MI - a 10 mile race(and my first ever medal)
2) The Crim in Flint, MI - also a 10 mile race
3) The Brooksie Way in Rochester, MI - a Half Marathon(and my first Half)
4) The Detroit Marathon Relay in Detroit, MI - my first marathon relay

Solstice Run Medal
Crim Medal
Brooksie Way Half Marathon Medal
Detroit Marathon Relay Medal

So that's it.  2010 medals.  While I like them all, they all have a different meaning for me and also bring back different memories of the races.  Hoping for more in 2011!

By the way, in regards to photography.  Here is a picture of the spibelt water bottle that I took the other day.   This is how I would have normally taken a picture of something:

Old way of taking picture
Now here is the new way taking a picture with the light tent I made.  total cost - $0:
New way of taking picture
What do you think?  Much better, IMHO.  It's a work in progress anyway.  I never thought that I was going to be learning photography when I started this blog.  Ah, life leads you in all kinds of directions.  Pick one and make it happen!

Have a good day and......Keep Running!

Dec 17, 2010

Resting and thinking about my marathon

Today is my rest day as you all know.  Wow, it's already been a week?  Where does the time go?  Oh, I know, reading blogs!  There are so many and so many good ones out there, it's hard to keep up with all of you.  I have completely blown off Facebook for blogs.  They are much more interesting that "I'm at this store now!"  I really enjoy reading blogs but jeez, I did it last night for two hours and that's almost speed reading.  And I'm still looking for more running/athlete sites so if you know of some good ones I'm not on, let me know!  Of course, the warmest day of the week is when my rest day is.  It's supposed to be 29 degrees today, a heat wave! and I'm not doing any running.  Oh well, I'll have plenty to run this weekend. 

As I start training for my marathon, I was thinking about what I'm going to be using to carry my stuff in.  I purchased a spibelt in November and used it for my Turkey Trot race.  I thought it worked out great because I could run with my phone.  My only worry is chafing.  The turkey trot was only a 10k so no big deal but a marathon is a different story.  I won't have winter clothes on to help with rubbing.  I also purchased a spibelt water bottle.  It's basically a water bottle with a small spibelt on it.  I will likely run with that but it doesn't fit my phone well.  It will hold key's although I will likely have my wife hold my keys and I can put gels in there.  I might switch out the bottle though - I like the Nathan bottle better.  The top on the bottle is a little hard(plastic) and I like the top to be rubber because it's easier on the teeth.  These things actually do what they advertise, they hold lots of stuff.  The material is nice and stretchy.  Even with the threat of rain on Thanksgiving, I put my phone in a plastic zip lock and it worked great.

For my half marathon, I just used my water bottle but I did not need any gels for that.  I also bought little tags to hold my race number which was nice not having to put holes in my jacket.
Spibelt - I really need to get better with the camera! I suck!

New Spibelt water bottle

What about you?  What do you wear(if anything) when you run in marathons?

Have a great day and......Keep Running!

Dec 16, 2010

2010 Race pictures

Did my morning run this morning and felt good.  I tried to stay on the street which was cleared of snow but there was lots of ice to be careful of.  I'm beginning to felt like Randy in The Christmas Story movie all dressed up to go outside but at least I was warm.


Here's some pictures of my races over the past year in 2010.  This was my first year racing(and running for that matter) and I had a blast doing it.

Irish guy at Corktown 5k

I'm in the blue and black with white shoes!

after the race with the kids!

Healthy Heights 5k

After Autism 10k

During Autism 10k; great pic from co-worker

Dad at first 10 mile run - Solstice Run!

Finish of 10 mile run!

Brother in law for Alpenfest 10k Gaylord

Alpenfest 10k Gaylord

Medal from Crim 10 mile race in Flint

Crim 10 mile

Us with Frank Shorter - Cool; first Half; Brooksie Way

End of brooksie way!
Favorite race picture - I'm floating!

Relay team Detroit Marathon

Relay Team after Detroit Marathon

Detroit Turkey Trot 10k
As I said, I had a blast with racing this year and can't wait for next year to start.  First race in 2011 is February!!

Have a great Day everyone and......Keep Running!

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