Results From the Half, the Party, and More Gross Foot Photos!

>> Thursday, January 31, 2008

Here are my official results from the St. Paul Winter Carnival Half Marathon this past weekend:

Total Time: 1:29:48
Pace: 6:52/mile
Place: 71 out of 1209

(earlier in the week, my time was listed as 1:29:13, which was a 6:49 pace, and I had placed 70th, so something just changed...)

And here are some more photos:


Dreary, foggy, snowy day


Out of the starting gates


The photo Jenny took of me around mile 8.
I was just starting my kick, but I was smiling!


Mile 12ish...dying...


Elevation chart of the out-and-back race.
Notice the sharp downhill at the start that
was KILLER on the way back up

After the race, I finished cleaning the house while Pharmie was baking delicious things. We had a party to get ready for! Pharmie made sweet desserts and awesome wheat buns. I worked on 3 kinds of chili: a double batch of white chicken chili, and 2 traditional red chilis (1 normal, and 1 veggie). People started showing up around 6, and we had about 30 people grab some grub over the next few hours. We had 2 local triathlete bloggers show up: Jumper and Jeremy. Jeremy had just run the half marathon with me a few hours before.


People mingling, people playing games


The most random assortment of people playing Catch Phrase


The kitchen at the end of the night with
3 empty pots of chili on the stove


The “goodies” corner, completely ransacked

OK, here comes the warning. And I haven’t been known to give warnings. These next photos are going to be a little gross. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

On Monday, 2 days after the half marathon, the blood blister on my foot didn’t look any different, so I figured I should pop it. I started by peeling back some of the upper blister in order to expose the blood blister beneath:



Then it popped. It dumped out some deep red blood:



I squeezed the little bastard dry:



I picked some skin off the top, and called it good:



Here it is 1 day after picking at it, and it looks “better”:



Anyone up for some hamburger?

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An Experiment

>> Tuesday, January 29, 2008

I received the following e-mail last week:

Steve,
Ran across your blog and saw that you had never tried Yaktrax. I handle Yaktrax PR, please send me your shoe size and address and I will get a sample out to you in the mail. We would be glad to send you some and let you give them a try. I think you are going to love them.

Look forward to hearing from you.

Take care,
Mike Dixon
Vice President
Genesis Marketing Partners


And guess what recently showed up in the mail? Guess. Two pairs of Yaktrax, size medium and large! I can’t wait for a little more packed snow and/or ice so I can try them out!

About 2 weeks ago, I wrote about winter running. I wrote how I wore spikes if it was too slippery, but I haven’t tried Yaktrax. That’s what the e-mail from Mike was referring to. On that note, I’d like to write about other products that I love or would like to try, and we’ll see if I can get any more goodies in the mail.

• Vanilla Crisp Powerbars. Love them. Love. Them. I had 1 before my half marathon this past weekend. And I had 2 vanilla Powergels during the run. This nutrition gave me what I needed for that sub-1:30 half.

• Recoverite is my FAVORITE after a hard workout. My body gets what it needs ASAP. Good stuff.

• Nuun. My wife thinks it’s the BOMB! She loves the Kona Cola flavor.

• Swimoutlet.com has great swim gear. Their goggles are cheap, and I’m a fan of the Speedo Jammer that they sell (size medium 32).

• Smartwool socks are SIMPLY THE BEST! So good. My wife and I both love them. I'm a size 10. She's a female size 8.5.

• I LOVE my Specialized Bike. Just love it. It’s one of their cheaper tri-bike models, so I’d LOVE to upgrade to something better...

• My MacBook Pro is a GREAT machine, but it’s getting old. It’s nearly 2 years old, and it’s looking pretty beat-up, as well as it’s starting to get a little sluggish. Could use another.

• I love my Pontiac. But it has 170,000 miles on it. I’ve been hearing good things about the Pontiac G6. I’m just saying...

My e-mail address is stevestenzelphotography@yahoo.com. I’d love to be able to write about how nice your company is with regards to giving their product to a loyal fan. Thanks.

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St. Paul Winter Carnival Half Marathon Race Report

>> Saturday, January 26, 2008

I did it! My first official half marathon is in the bag! I’m sitting on the couch, icing my knee, so I figured I’d start typing up my report.

The day started normally: up early, solid breakfast, a few solid poops. I had 2 different time goals for this race. I figured that I could run this half marathon in 1:35:00. But, I had a CRAZY goal of breaking 1:30:00. So I taped a pace chart to my arm that had a finishing time of 1:30, with mile splits of 6:51.9. I wasn’t going to go out that fast, but I wanted to see how close to that pace I could run.



Pharmie came with me, and we had an ominous sign on our drive towards downtown St. Paul: a hearse passed us on I94. Dang. We got down there, grabbed my chip and number, and I started to stretch a bit.



Oh...yes, I was wearing the lucky tighty-whities. How could I not?!?



Waiting in line for the porta-potty, a man saw my pace chart on my sleeve and said “That makes you look like Tom Brady!” I laughed and said, “Yeah, but mine only has one play on it: run 6:51 miles!” Shortly after, still in line for the crapper, I ran into Jeremy, who’s new to the blogging world. We actually hopped in line near one another at the start, and chatted for a few minutes waiting for the gun.


Pharmie’s photo shortly after the start

We were off, and Jeremy and I split up. The roads were wet, but they weren’t slick. It was a nice, calm, 20 degree morning, with light snow falling. PERFECT RUNNING WEATHER! I made small talk with a number of people that I passed. Everyone loved the day and how calm the air was. I waved at all the police officers and thanked everyone for being out there. As I passed one man, he laughed and said “You’re so polite!” I smiled, thanked him, and kept on going.

I wasn’t keeping to my pace for the first few miles, but I knew that would be the case. That was the plan. I ran the first 3 miles in 21:00 on the nose. My pace was over 7 minute miles, and I reached the turn around in 45:59, which was 59 seconds off my pace.

Mile 1: 6:57
Mile 2 & 3: 14:03 (7:02 ave)
Mile 4: 7:00
Mile 5: 7:14
Mile 6: 7:15
Turn Around: 45:59

I was pretty happy with where I was. (Except for the fact that I saw a guy in a giant penguin costume before turning around who was a half-mile in front of me. Dang.) I sometimes call myself “Captain Negative Spilt” because I’m great at running negative splits on my long runs. My second half of all of my long runs in the past 6 weeks have been 15 seconds to 2 and a half minutes faster than the first half. If I held onto this pace, I’d finish happily around 1:32, but if I could pull out a negative split, I still had a shot at my CRAZY goal!

After the turn around point, I saw Jeremy shortly after. We shouted sweet nothings to each other. A bit later, I saw Iron Girl Nyhus, who I didn’t know was running this race. We shouted “hellos!” And then, just a little bit later, IronMomJenny jumps into the median with her camera to take a photo of me as she’s shouting “STEVE IN A SPEEDO! GROSS!” I shouted my thanks back to her. It was at about that point that I started running with a man in a blue jacket, wearing a Lifetime Fitness hat backwards. He was chattier than I was! He was a great guy, but I never got his name. I told him it was my first half, and he said my pace was awesome. I think he kind of took me under his wing. I asked if he thought we could break 1:30. He said “Keep it under 7 a mile, and we’ll do it!” We stayed no more than 10 feet apart for the last 4-5 miles of the race. I started to pick it up. So did the nameless man in the LTF hat.

Mile 7: 6:29
Mile 8: 6:38
Mile 9: 6:40
Mile 10: 6:39

At this point, I was only about 21 seconds behind my crazy goal. I WAS HURTING, but I also knew I had a shot to break 1:30. And then I did this:

Mile 11: 5:35

What? WHAT?!? I don’t know if that was a short mile, or if I had just really been kicking it in the ass, but I was now running nearly 1 minute FASTER than my goal. I knew I couldn’t let up.

Mile 12: 7:28

I had slipped a little, but I was still giving it everything. I was now only 20 seconds faster than my goal (the pace chart on my sleeve was SUCH A GREAT IDEA!). Nobody passed me in the last 5 miles. Even though I felt like I was dying, I was still passing people.

Nearing downtown St. Paul, I glanced at my watch. The nameless man must have seen me do that, and he uttered under his breath, “you’re gonna make it...” We turned up that BASTARD of a hill to get back into downtown, and my legs felt like bags of shit. Heavy, stinky, slow bags of shit. I knew that hill would take a bite out of my pace. I heard Phamie shouting my name from 2 blocks away. I was hardly moving, and I knew it was going to be close. I locked my sight on the finish line and gave her hell.



Mile 13 and last 0.1: 7:21
Total: 1:29:25

I had done it! I had 35 seconds to spare! I was ecstatic! And sore. And wet. And sore. And tired. And sore.

I found Phamie, my SUPER SUPPORTER, and she gave me my heavy winter jacket. We cheered for finishers for about a half hour. We saw Jeremy and Iron Girl Nyhus finish, and then we grabbed a finish line photo as we were on our way out:



We went home, and I had a look at my foot. It was sore. And nasty. A blood blister had formed UNDER my regular blisters:



Well, now we have a party to get ready for. More photos to come regarding the half marathon, and hopefully some photos from the party tonight! Thanks for reading!

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Upcoming Half, Party, and Marathon

>> Friday, January 25, 2008

Tomorrow morning at 9 am, I’ll be running the St. Paul Winter Carnival Half Marathon. My first half! Yey! I hope to see IronMomJenny and Jeremy down there, and hopefully some more. I have 1 goal that I really think I’ll be able to make, and 1 mostly unrealistic goal that I’ll be shooting for. Look for my race report in a few days.

And remember, if you’re in the Twin Cities area, shoot me an e-mail (to get our home address) and swing by our place around 6 pm tomorrow night. We’re having some folks over for chili. I’ll have a “party report” posted with my race report.

Lastly, about a week ago, I did it. I put the wheels in motion. I registered for the one thing that I said I would never do. I signed up for a flippin’ marathon.





I'm signed up with Phamie, her sister Steph, and 3 of our friends. There’s no turning back, baby.

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Coming To Terms With My New Identity

>> Wednesday, January 23, 2008

I realized something recently. I’ve slowly been changing. My new form has been emerging. I’ve become “that guy.”

I began to realize something was brewing when I found myself commenting things like this on friends’ blogs:
“20 degrees?!? Come on! That’s GREAT running weather! Why’d you stay inside.”
and
“What?!? You were afraid to go out and run in THAT? Have you SEEN any of my recent posts?!”
and, sometimes simply
“Wuss.”

OK, I’ve never called anyone a wuss, but I felt like I’ve been getting close to that. I’m holding back. I’m not a jerk. Really. I’m a friendly, fun, happy-go-lucky guy.

Really.

Regardless...it’s happened. I somehow became...I don’t even want to say it. I somehow...became...a hardcore winter runner. I’m sorry. I didn’t plan for this. It just sort of happened.

I hope we can still be friends.

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Coldest Run Ever! And Great Portrait!

>> Sunday, January 20, 2008

Tomorrow I am supposed to run my last long run before my half-marathon next weekend. But instead, I ran it today, on the coldest day of the winter here in Minnesota. The cold doesn’t scare me (if you haven’t read my previous post about running in cold weather, make sure to check it out). It was titties cold when I was getting ready to head out in the late morning:



This run was going to be along the half-marathon course. So, earlier in the day, I drove the route and noted landmarks every half-mile. I transferred those mile-markers to a small piece of paper, and I taped it to my sleeve so I could reference it during my run:


I know people have done this before, but I felt like a genius!

I was hoping for another good run, but there were 2 things I was concerned about:

1. It was the coldest air temperature that I’ve even run in. A few days ago, the wind chill was worse, but 6 below is the coldest air temp during a run for me EVER. Would I be OK? Would my weak knee be pissed off in that cold?

2. It was along Shepard Road, which is nonstop, small, rolling hills. Would I be OK with that? Would the hills REALLY slow me down? Would my half-marathon time next weekend be horrendous because of those hills?

I wore the same outfit as in my previous post, but this time I didn’t start out wearing the TurtleFur ski mask. I carried it with me in case I needed it. I ran bare-faced. I ran the course backward: I started a few miles from home at the end of Cleveland Ave, which is the turn-around point for the half, and I ran towards downtown St. Paul (and then back).

Well, the wind started to freeze my face a little, but I was holding up OK. The wind cut more at the top of those rolling hills, but soon enough, I was heading down into a lower spot with much less wind. I hit the 6-mile marker where I turned around in 42:54.

My eyes were starting to freeze open. My nostril hair had been frozen solid since mile 2. My ears were getting a little chilled through my hat. My chin was getting frosty. But it was all do-able. I plugged on.

Miles 10 and 11 were tough. There were some uphill areas, and I was running more into the wind (remember, those who are running the half, this would be mile 5 and 6). But I ran the second 6 miles and got back to my car in 42:49. Total time for the 12-miler was 1:25:43. I was happy. There was another minor victory in the run too: I ran the whole 12 miles without stopping once. No stoplights, no potty breaks, no walking, no nothing. With each run, I usually keep track of “running time” and “actual time.” Usually, with my runs along Summit Ave, my actual time is 1 or 2 minutes slower than my running time because of stoplights. Today, they both go down as the same time. Running time: 1:25:43. Actual time: 1:25:43. Sweet, sweet victory.

• Longest training run ever.
• Coldest outdoor run ever.
• Longest run without walking or stopping ever.
• Highest running mileage week since high-school: 30.5 miles
• And my bad knee is HOLDING UP!


When I got back to my car, I immediately reached in and grabbed my camera. I snapped a photo of myself. I turned the camera around to see the photo. “What the hell...?” While running, I had no idea that I was so frozen:



My hat, my ears, my eyebrows, my eyelashes, my nose hair, and all of my scruff were COVERED in ice. Oddly, I was proud of it. Well, maybe it’s not all that odd to wear it proudly.

I got in the car and started to drive home. I suddenly got a taste of blood in my mouth, and I realized that I had a cold-weather bloody nose. I grabbed an unused Chipotle napkin from my armrest and crammed it up there. Then my hand grazed my business. My man business. “Uh oh...” I thought. Yep, it was a little frozen. So, with one hand on my junk trying to heat it up, one hand on my camera to take a picture, and one knee on the wheel to keep myself on the road, I snapped this photo:


I think this should be my new profile picture...

Little winky (as Mom calls it) was OK. It wasn’t as bad as earlier this winter when he nearly fell off. Closer to home, my nose stopped bleeding.



I’m ready for next weekend. Let’s go.

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PSA: How To Run Outside In The Winter

>> Saturday, January 19, 2008

Updated 1/21/08 at the bottom

I’ve decided to do a winter series of Public Service Announcements, so I thought there was no better place to start than to give advice on how to run outside in the frigid Minnesota winter. It’s not that I know it all; in fact, I’ve made some horrible mistakes. Because of my mistakes, I have wisdom to share. Hopefully, I can get you out there to enjoy this great winter!

You can’t be afraid of nasty temperatures. They’re just numbers that tell you how many layers to put on. Here’s what I’ve learned you need to do:

Lesson 1: Homework

How cold is it? How strong is the wind? Is it slick? You need to step outside or turn on the local news to figure out where to start. When I was getting ready for a 7.5 miler on yesterday, the T.V. was telling me this:



Yep. Three below. With twenty-four below wind chill. That qualifies as "titties cold." But it's still do-able.

Lesson 2: Layers

Once you’ve assessed the day, start getting dressed. You don’t need weight, you just need layers. With winter running, zippers are your friend. Zippers can be zipped up tight when you start out and are a little chilly, and zippers can be unzipped once you get going and get a little warm. And yes, it’s possible to get PLENTY warm in 24 below wind chill.

I’ve also become a “mittens” person since I’ve started winter running. Mittens are a great place to hold your keys, a few bucks, and some Gu. Here are all my layers laid out:



Sub Lesson 2A: Layers in “Special Places”

Ladies, watch those nipples if you’ve been “blessed.” Fellas, you GOTTA pack some extra layers over your junk. In case you’ve forgotten, it was just over 1 month ago that I nearly froze mine off.

I normally have 2 or 3 layers on top and pants on the bottom with 2 or 3 extra layers over my man parts. Notice in the photo above that I still wore boxers over my Under Armour for extra protection.

Here I am, ready to head out:



I was plenty warm after 5 miles, and the zipper on the hoodie was unzipped a ways, and the ski mask was off.

Lesson 3: No Glasses

On longer, colder runs, I have to wear my contacts. My glasses will fog up like nobodies business. So if it’s colder than 10 degrees, or I’m running more than 4 or 5 miles, I put in my contacts.

Lesson 4: Get a Grip

If you’re going to be running on a day that there could be packed snow or ice, consider investing in a pair of slip-on spikes of some sort. I have a pair that looks like this:



These are pretty intense, and have 6 replaceable spikes on each foot. They hold up pretty well, but slide a little to the outside of my foot over the course of a run. Many runners love “YakTrax,” but I’ve never tried them myself. It’s essentially springs wrapped around some rubber tubes to give you some grip:



Lesson 5: The Prize

If you need some motivation, plan accordingly. To get through a chilly run, I remember what’s waiting for me at home. No, not naked Pharmie. I’m talking about food:


Recoverite, pizza, and York Peppermint Patties. Yum.
Nevermind the fruit in the background; I don’t eat that crap.

Lesson 6: Warming Up

When you’re done and get home, you’ve GOTTA get out of your clothes pretty quickly. The clothes that you’ve just run in will be sweaty and will cool you down in no time. Here’s my hat, eye-brows, nostrils, and girlishly-long eyelashes covered with sweaty ice crystals:



You need to take off your clothes to get warm. And this isn’t my ploy to get you naked. It’s just the truth.

Did I miss anything? Comment if you have some useful suggestions that I missed here. Let’s share them with others that could be running but are a bit timid!

Oh, there is a completely different way of dealing with running in the winter. This way is easier, but less affordable: move to Panama.

Coming Soon: a PSA on how to remove unwanted body hair. It will contain product reviews and helpful tips. I bet you can’t wait.

Updates:
- Ironmin noted that she wears a turtle fur and rotates it around to a dry spot as it gets too wet from breathing through it.
- Jameson commented on something that I didn't mention specifically: no cotton next to the skin. It will get wet with sweat, and then it will get cold!
- Dana also commented on something that I forgot to mention: CHAPSTICK!!
- Lastly, the idea of wearing mittens to store things in was Pharmies. She's been doing that for years!

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MWM Runner Looking for Life in St. Paul

>> Wednesday, January 16, 2008

“MWM Triathlete looking for other winter athletes, M or F, to acknowledge existence. Please do not reply. Just go for a run on days that I do, and smile and say ‘hi’ to fellow runners. Especially those in gray hoodies.”

On my run yesterday, I took my normal route up and down Summit Avenue in St. Paul. It was a 20 degree day with a wind chill in the single digits, so it was chilly, but far from being “titties cold” (that’s actually my sweet wife Pharmie’s word for really, really cold).

Despite running in the middle of the afternoon in a popular running location for 11 miles, I didn’t see any other runners. Not a single one. I just wanted someone to say “hi” to. I like running in the winter in Minnesota because when 2 runners eyes meet, there’s a bond that forms. It’s a “hey dude, glad to see you’re out in this shit too” kind of a bond. But there was none of that yesterday. Not a single soul out for a run. Nobody to meet, nobody to pass. Bummer.

But at least my run was good. I was hoping to run 11 miles in 1:21:00. Instead, I finished in 1:18:28. I’m sneaking up on 7-minute miles. Sweet. I’m nearly ready for the half marathon in a week and a half. I may run a 12-miler early next week on the race course (despite the forecast which is predicting it to be “titties cold”).

Here’s some proof of my run yesterday:


As always when I show a gross photo,
I hope you were eating.

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Fun Pictures and Workout Updates

>> Thursday, January 10, 2008

First of all, here are some fun pictures:

Here’s a mailing Pharmie and I got about 2 or 3 months ago advertising for the Chisago Lakes Tri that we’ve done the last 2 years in a row:



After closer inspection (directly under the red balloon arch), there’s a HOT women smiling while adjusting her pony-tail, and she’s talking to a geek inspecting what’s on the bottom of his foot:


(I’m talking about Pharmie and myself)

Here’s another dose of Crush:


I can’t help myself...

And I found this in the Sunday funnies this past weekend. It’s the epitome of our household:


Click on the image to see a larger version


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Now, time for some workout updates. “What’s that...” you say? “Steve’s actually going to talk about physical things?” I know, I hardly believe it either. You may think that I’ve turned into a big bag of mush. You’re close. To try to prevent said mushiness, I wanted to do a “New Years Blowout” workout at the Y. I just made that term up, but I wanted to go to the Y and have a KILLER weightlifting session.

Sometimes I keep track of what I’m lifting when I’m bored. On good days, if I take all the weight that I’m lifting and multiply it out (ie: 80 lbs for 10 reps is 800 lbs), I’ll get 25,000 to 30,000 pounds for an upper body workout. Those numbers don’t mean much; they’re just a different way to keep track of the difference between workouts.

So, for this “New Years Blowout,” I wanted to go lift A LOT of weight with great form, and achieve a super burn. I only lifted weights that I could keep track of; I did not do anything that required just part of my own body weight (like leg lifters or crunches). Here’s what I did, roughly in order:

(An (m) means it was a machine - all others were free weight.)

• Decline Bench Press: 135 x 8, 155 x 8, 175 x 8, 135 x 14
• Bicep (m): 67.5 x 8, 80 x 8, 92.5 x 8, 87.5 x 10
• Tricep Dips: 155 x 15, 155 x 15
• Cable Tri Pulldowns: 50 x 12, 55 x 12, 55 x 14
• Ab Crunch (m): 125 x 25, 125 x 25, 112.5 x 30
• Lat Pulldowns: 100 x 10, 112.5 x 10, 125 x 10
• Obliques (m): 115 x 12, 115 x 12 (twice on both sides)
• Upright Shoulder Rows: 65 x 10, 65 x 10, 70 x 8
• Cable Rows: 70 x 10, 80 x 10
• Bicep Curl: 70 x 8, 70 x 8
• Calf Raises (m): 90 x 12, 90 x 12, 90 x 16
• Leg Presses (m): 100 x 10, 120 x 10, 120 x 10
• Quad Extensions (m): 100 x 10, 115 x 10
• Hamstring Curls (m): 87.5 x 10, 87.5 x 10
• Chest Fly (m): 75 x 10, 87.5 x 10
• Shoulder Press (m): 75 x 10

Do all the math, and I lifted 51,185 pounds on Sunday. Over 25 tons. Sweet. Feel the burn. The sad part was that I WANTED to feel the burn the next day, but on Monday I felt fine. Dang. I guess I really can’t complain.

And my Half Marathon training is going well too. I went on my first 10-miler since Ironman yesterday, and I finished in 1:13:45. I want to see if I can hold 7:30 miles for the half. We’ll see. Next week: an 11-miler in 1:21:00.

Here’s to great workouts throughout 2008! (And again, everyone is invited to our place for a party on Jan 26th. See the post 2 posts down for details...)

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Say Uncle! Say Uncle!

>> Monday, January 07, 2008

A quick post about 2 very important things:

First, I’m super pumped that American Gladiators is back on TV. I saw both episodes last night, and there’s one more on tonight. I like the male Gladiator, Wolf:



...and I may or may not have strong feelings for the female Gladiator Crush:





Secondly, I’m even MORE PUMPED to have been introduced to my first nephew, Ian. Here he is, only 12 hours old:


He’s got his cute little hands over his cute little ears!

(And again, everyone is invited to our place for a party on Jan 26th. See previous post for details...)

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Swim Lesson, Half Marathon, and PARTY!

>> Sunday, January 06, 2008

Two days ago, I had my first swim lesson since I was 10 years old. Andrea, from our local Y, spent a half-hour working with me to help me with my breathing. She gave me 4 drills to work on to keep me from rolling onto my back to breath. I’ll put them to work and try to become more efficient in the water. Thanks Andrea!

I won’t be spending a ton of time in the water in the next few weeks because I’m training for the St. Paul Winter Carnival Half-Marathon at the end of January. This will actually be my first half mary! After Ironman, I stopped working out for a while. And then I started running a few 5Ks, so my long-distance legs were gone. About a month ago, I started ramping up my running again to get ready for that half. Last week I went 8 miles in 59 minutes, and this weekend I hit a 9-miler in 1:06:31.

Lastly, after the Winter Carnival Half Marathon, Pharmie and I are hosting a party at our house. This will be a housewarming / second-place-finish-for-blog-of-the-year party. The run is Saturday, January 26th, at 9 am. Afterwards, if there’s anyone we know running the race or cheering, they can stop over and warm up - we’re about 5 miles from the start of the race. Then, we’ll make a few kinds of chili and maybe some pizza, and family, friends, bloggers, neighbors, and whoever else can stop over can grab some grub and say hi! It’ll probably be from about 6 to midnight. You’re all invited if you can get to the Minneapolis/St. Paul area! Please e-mail me if you plan on attending so we know how much food to make and so I can give you our address: stevestenzelphotography@yahoo.com

More to come soon...

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Looking Back, Looking Forward

>> Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Some final 2007 year-end numbers, keeping me honest:

Swim: 135,200 yards (or 76.8 miles)
Bike: 1,504.7 miles
Run: 415.5 miles *
Lifting Weights: 118 times

* My running total is so low because of my left knee issue, which was a big problem early in 2007. I ran much more in the last 2 months of 2007 (which is AFTER Ironman training), than in did in the first 4.5 months of 2007 when I had nasty knee pain after running 1 mile. I’m trying to keep that knee strong. It’s already a million times better than it was last year at this time.

2007 Races:
• LTF Indoor Tri: Placed 13th out of 100.
• Apple Duathlon: 1:54:36 (5K: 22:22, 33K bike: 1:07:51, 5K: 21:52).
• WIBA (WI Ironman Brick Adventure): Not really an official event, but just a damn good time.
• Chisago Lakes Half Ironman (my first half IM): 5:47:13 (44:35 swim, 3:05:13 bike, 1:48:15 run).
• Ironman WI (my first IM): 13:53:32 (1:29:10 swim, 7:06:53 bike, 4:58:03 run).
• Monster Dash 5K: Placed 13th in 19:28.
• Tesfa 5K at Fort Snelling: Placed 1st in 19:11.
• Giving Thanks 5K at Como Park: Placed 2nd in 18:43.
• Reindeer Run 5K: Placed about 20th in 19:34. Placed 3rd in the costume contest.

I think 2007 was the “Year of the Penalty.” I was charged with 2 minutes at the Apple Duathlon for “equipment abandonment” when my number few off in the wind. And I zoned out on the bike leg of Ironman (who doesn’t), and was assessed a drafting penalty. Let’s try to avoid this crap in 2008, OK? It was also the “Year of the 13.” I placed 13th in 2 different small events, and finished Ironman in 13 hours (and 53 minutes).

So my goals for 2008? I dunno. Maybe summed up in 2 words, my new year resolution is: do stuff. I’m not much on new years resolutions. I try to make changes as they are needed day-by-day; I don’t say, “Well, I’ll start doing [whatever] on Jan 1st.”

Here’s my tentative race schedule for 2008. I know no one really cares about this, but take a look and see if we’re doing any of the same races. I LOVE to meet bloggers!

• Jan 12: Polar Plunge in White Bear Lake. My first open-water swim of the year!

• Jan 26: St. Paul Winter Carnival Half Marathon. My FIRST half marathon - Yay! In the dead of a Minnesota winter - Boo!

• Feb 2: Race Up The Place: 900 step stair-climb race in the tallest building in downtown St. Paul.

• March-ish: Lifetime Fitness Indoor Triathlon in Chanhassen. I’ve done this race twice. It’s a fun, low-key triathlon early in the season. Great for people wanting to try out tris!

• May 24: Apple Duathlon in Sartell.

• June 21: Grandmas Marathon, Duluth. Yep, after saying I’d never run a marathon, I’m planning to sign up for a marathon. Don’t believe a word I say.

• June 28-29: WIBA ride with IM WI 2008 hopefuls.

• July 12: Lifetime Fitness Olympic Distance Triathlon, Lake Nokomis, Minneapolis.

• July 27: Chisago Lake Sprint Distance Triathlon. I thought about doing the half-IM, but I don’t want to commit myself to that. So I’ll do the sprint instead.

• Nov 1: Tesfa 5K at Fort Snelling. I won this 5K this year. I feel inclined to defend my title.

• A smattering of 5Ks will work their way into 2008 as well. I rarely plan these. It’s more like “Hey! There’s a 5K this weekend! Let’s do it!” Happy New Year!!

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