Lots of Stroller Runs!

>> Thursday, January 17, 2019

I've been seeing a lot of THIS lately:


Three different runs. Yes really.

Those shots were from my most recent Tues and Thurs runs: Jan 8, Jan 10, and Jan 15. All with Charlie. All chilly. And all on different parts of the Midtown Greenway trail. Here's a map that shows the trail's east end where it hits the Mississippi River, and noted are the 3 places I took these photos:


I covered MPLS edge-to-edge on the Greenway over these runs,
and St. Louis Park too. Ending with a bit in Hopkins to the west.

The Jan 8th and 15th runs started just to the east of the "Jan 8" on the map at the Uptown YWCA. The Jan 10th run started near that big "bump" around Hiawatha at the Midtown YWCA.

Here's what I tweeted after my run on the 15th:



These runs have been good, but they've also been a "wake up call" to start working more on my speed! The run on the 8th was a tempo run: I ran 6 miles total, with the middle 3 HARD. It was windy, so my first half was much slower than the last half:

3:21, 3:19, 3:27 = 10:08.48 (into wind)
3:03, 3:08, 2:52 = 9:04.10 (with wind)
= 19:12.58 for those 3 miles (6:24 pace)

I stopped to walk for a minute, and then cooled down a bit.

The run on the 15th was "just" a long run as I noted in that tweet above. I ran easier for 2 miles, harder for 4.5, and then easier for 3+. My half mile splits in the 4.5 "harder" miles were 3:23, 3:28, 3:19, 3:15, 3:17, 3:10, 3:09, 3:08, and 3:00 (6:24 pace).

MY EFFORTS ON BOTH OF THOSE RUNS (A "HARD" TEMPO AND A "LONG RUN" WITH SOME HARDER MILES IN THE MIDDLE) HAD THE EXACT SAME PACE. There's a big difference between my "easy" and my "moderate" pace, but then from "moderate" to "hard" is pretty close. I have one "fast-ish" pace, and I can't go any faster right now. So I need to work on the speed!!

This starts today. Off to the indoor track at my gym...

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Reactions to my "Year in Review" Post

>> Tuesday, January 15, 2019

I shared my "year in review" post with 2018's training totals on Facebook last week. A teammate who's good at tris was impressed with my swim numbers (she swims like my wife: "oh, there's a race coming up, better hit the pool 2 times to make sure I still know how to swim!") as she told me she only swam like 10,000 yards.

Then Lisa (who I raced at that Indoor Tri 3 years ago) teased me about the 3D graphs in the post (which were the only way that BeginnerTriathlete.com shows them!). And team captain Rose commented about the part where I said I had no goals for 2019 and might not even race on the team.


It's true. Laurie teased me at the gym about the low low price of their friendship. :)

Back with a training update soon.

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Weekend Waterpark

>> Monday, January 14, 2019

Just a quick post with a few pics from this weekend. Our family met my sister-in-law's family at a little waterpark an hour south of the Cities ("The Great Serengeti Indoor Water Park" in Owatonna which is just a few small pools, a little lazy river, and 2 water slides).


Charlie coming down the body slide into my arms.


Henry and Charlie on the tube slide. What's that you say?...
You don't see Charlie?... Yeah, that's because Henry's sitting on him.


Pizza for my nephew's birthday!


Charlie loved the slides.


Crazy hair at breakfast, where syrup goes on everything.


The cousins rode together a lot. Here they are at the end of a run with my sister-in-law.


Smiley cousins!

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Putting My New Year’s Goals Into Action

>> Saturday, January 12, 2019

In my big “year in review” post from Monday, I noted wanting to get my training intensity up before too long, as I learned last year (at an early season running race, and during the tri season with regards to my biking) that I need to be training harder if I’m to be racing where I expect to be. I put those thoughts into action in my first 3 workouts this week:

- SUNDAY I did a quick intense trainer ride. I warmed up watching 15 minutes of football, then did all of 35 minute Spinerval 23.0 B: a tempo-based workout. I cooled down for a bit to make it an hour of time in the saddle.

- MONDAY I hit the pool for some 100s. It’s not uncommon for me to do 100s, but I spent all of last year doing “CSS-style” swims: swim workouts of 1600 - 2200 yards at decent speeds with short rest. The idea is that you’re not working TOO hard initially (just below a threshold pace), but after the workout drags on, the shorter rest really gets to you. It helped me a lot when I first started swimming this way a few years ago. But I need to take a step back now and then and train differently.

So I lengthened my rest a bit on Monday so I could hit the 100s a bit harder. I just went from 20 seconds to 30 seconds which doesn’t seem like much. But it allowed me to swim faster - it felt a LOT different. About 1/3 into the workout, I was feeling really pooped in the last half of each 100. But then the longer rest let me recover more to be ready to hit the next one hard. It was amazing how different the workout felt with just those extra 10 seconds added to each rest. I ended with a 1:25.75 average over the 15x100 workout, with ALL of them being between 1:24 and 1:26.xx, and that was the fastest I'd swam 100s in a while (there was a workout a few months back where I averaged 1:24 or 1:25, but the rest have all been slower for the last year or so - usually around 1:27-1:28).

- TUESDAY I took Charlie for a 3 mile tempo run. We went just over 6 total, but the middle 3 were done fast. The trail was in good shape for mid-January:


We ran from the Uptown YWCA, so here we are on the
Greenway Trail near “the lakes” about 1 mile into our warm up.

I don’t know if you remember, but it was WINDY on Tuesday (there were wind advisories for most counties west of the metro - so most of the state). We ran into the wind on the way out, and then turned back with the wind on the way back. Here were my half-mile splits of the hard 3 miles:

INTO the wind: 3:21, 3:19, 3:27 = 10:08 out
WITH the wind: 3:03, 3:08, 2:52 = 9:04 back

3 mile total: 19:12 (6:24 pace)

And then Charlie ran 4 laps on a 14-laps-to-a-mile elevated track when we got to the gym:


He can’t pace himself. Each lap was a dead sprint, followed
by 90 seconds of laying on the ground. Rinse and repeat.

Then I backed off the effort a bit the rest of the week. But it was a good "test" with some speed! Now to make sure I keep incorporating some speed each week!...

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Friday Funny 1547: Home Inspection Fails

>> Friday, January 11, 2019

I love that Star Tribune always shares the best "home inspection fails" of the year at the start of a new year. Here's the list for 2018:

Magic guardrails. No newel posts required, apparently.




Who needs kickout flashing? Just install another gutter on the wall to catch the water that doesn't make it into the first gutter.




Are these overnotched? Maybe. We better check our notching and boring tables to be sure.




Yeah, that happened.




Would you walk on this? We didn't.




You could always recognize little Timmy by the unique scar on his forehead.




OUCH.




Ok, fine, we won't inspect the sump basket. *slowly backs away*




New air freshener scent: Tahitian PolyVinyl Chloride.




Now it fits.




30-amp service. No joke. That's the whole electrical service. There's nothing else.




Government humor. "Ped" is trade talk for that green box next to the sign. We know, it's not home inspection related, but Dustin took this photo and kindly explained why this was funny to the rest of our team. He's right, this is GOLDEN.




Missed it by that much.




What 17 tubes of caulking will get you.




Painted grout lines. They actually looked pretty good from the street.




Flex Seal® to the rescue.




Frost-covered attic. Yes, there was a whole-house humidifier running at this house.




Properly bonded outlet.




One heck of a calling card.




The most expensive way to hold up shelves.




There were a few other cool photos that we took this year, however, and I have to share them while I have your attention.

Old Radiator.




Neat panels.




Cool light fixture. And that pressure gauge better be decorative.




Clean, ancient boiler. And it's not wrapped with asbestos! A truly rare find.




I'd seen most of these over the year because I follow these guys on Facebook. (I remember showing my wife the "scissors in the electrical panel" one. Sheesh.)

If you like these, here are some related "Friday Funnies" from the past years when they shared their "home inspection fails" of the year. (I think my favorite was 2014.) Click on each year to see them: 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017.

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Friday Funny 1546: Bloody Nipples

We've all seen some bloody nipples at longer races. I think this last guy has it all figured out:



As wise men had said, "If you haven't shit yourself and your nipples aren't bleeding by mile 26, did you even run?"

Oh, and yes, that 2nd image is from "The Office:"



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Friday Funny 1545: Fixed It






























































Lots more funnies posted all day long on SportsAndLaughs.tumblr.com.

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