Dec 28, 2008
The holiday season was very kind to my family as we were fortunate enough to see many loved ones over a 3-4 day period. I'm stoked for New Year's eve as Teresa and I will watch the ball drop while celebrating the marriage of our friends Lexi and Keith at the Terrace Club of Jacob's Field (I will never call it Progressive Field). As a groomsmen, I get to pimp out in a black suit!
Happy New Year! Don't wait until Jan 1 to make changes in your life... Start today!
Dec 19, 2008
122 days until Boston (17-1/2 weeks). I believe I'm in good enough shape to begin an advanced level training program that I've developed for myself with the help of Jack Daniels and Joe Bowman. I've got sub-3 on the brain. Have no idea if it's do-able, but I'm gonna shoot for it. Sometimes getting in "sub-3" shape is more rewarding than realizing the actual goal.
Nov 12, 2008
This past week has been perfect running weather and I've taken advantage by getting out in the mornings for an hour or so. My new favorite piece of running gear is my Nike Sphere Dry Hoody. I can wear it as a mask or pull it down under my nose/mouth if I get too warm. Also, it provides complete coverage of my ears and neck. My Bolega socks are a close second at this point.
Direct your positive vibes south this weekend as Elizabeth returns to Richmond, VA to tackle their marathon. Give it hell!
Nov 5, 2008
Oct 16, 2008
By noon the next morning we were officially parents of beautiful baby boys. The first six months were rough. Caring for and getting used to the needs of the babies was never an issue. We managed perfectly. Since I tend always to squeeze something running related into my posts, seven months after they were born, I ran a 3:02 marathon. Amazing to think I pulled that off at the same time I was doing the 4AM feedings.
The last six months have been a whirlwind! Rolling over, sitting up, holding bottles, teething, crawling, first haircut, furniture walking... It's been amazing to witness. Their interaction with each other is incredible. So indepedent but so very aware of the others presence. I cannot wait to see what's in store for the next six months and beyond!
The pic below was taken on October 9th at Portrait Innovations in Avon.
Oct 13, 2008
Your entry into the 113th Boston Marathon on Monday, April 20, 2009 has been accepted.
Woo hoo! I'm looking forward to Boston for so many reasons. Last week Teresa and I discussed taking a trip to either Plymouth or Rockport. Also, we may have an opportunity to visit a friend who lives near Bristol, CT and works for ESPN.
Sep 15, 2008
Race morning... Yikes! 80 degrees, humid from the rain that passed through the day before, and a little on the windy side. I thought to myself how I've never been warm prior to starting a marathon. That's just the kind of day it was, a day of firsts. I was shirtless by mile 8 (a first) with my race bib pinned to my red split-leg shorts (another first). I had to stop for at least a minute to make this happen (not at all concerned about time). About a mile later I shoved some ice down my shorts (not only a first, but also a last!). I can't figure how I was on pace to run a 3:10 through the half because the contingency strategy was in effect since mile 7 (i.e. finish in one piece). I know more than the average bear about how hard the body must work to stay cool on a hot day and I wasn't about to make it work any harder.
It was a fun race nonetheless. Highlights include (in no particular order): running a mile with the winner of the '85 and '95 Erie Marathon, helping and being helped by others over the last 6-8 miles, very nice volunteers, not stopping to walk despite cramping quads, running faster miles 22-26 than miles 18-22, crossing the finish line, and last but not least, shaking the hand and talking with a 90-year old who ran the 1/2 in 3:04, a world record (see picture below).
I was sad Teresa had to work. She knows more than anyone what running means to me and understood my desire to squeeze this one in despite her not being there with me. She also understood how much it meant for the twins to be there with me despite the forecast of rain. I believe they were both awake at the finish line this time!
The sleeves were definitely not needed... could have ditched the shirt as well
Age group world record, Henry Sypniewski, 90 years young
Finish line in site
Happy to be done.. and proud to be an American : )
Me and my homies
Sep 11, 2008
Me and my little buddies - early August
Aug 28, 2008
Took video of the boys playing together... the smile on Cole's face (on the left) about halfway through the videw is so damn cute.
Aug 21, 2008
My training is going so-so. I've managed to squeeze in long runs of 16 and 18 miles the past two weekends, respectively. Have also managed some medium long tempo runs, hills workouts, track work, etc. I don't know what my gameplan will be come race day. Part of me is already looking forward to Boston '09, which will be marathon number 13 and mine and Teresa's first trip (of many) to Boston with our family.
Aug 6, 2008
After my final 400 I realized my pace (4:36 min/mile) was just a tad bit faster than what Haile Gebrselassie ran for a full 26.2 miles last fall in Berlin (4:45 min/mil). I couldn't have run 20 more feet at that pace and he rocked a full marathon at that clip!! Unbelievable. Too bad he's not running the Olympic Marathon.
Jul 28, 2008
On another note, watched Running on the Sun last night. This is a movie documenting the journeys of a dozen or so participants of the 1999 Badwater 135. I've since learned that a local runner placed third in that very race. The challenge of such a race is intriguing as hell, but it's not for me. I need to work out my mental issues with the marathon before even thinking about something as nutty as that.
Caden has a cold and had a rough time last night. Their room now smells worse than a nursing home (I should know, I visited one recently). Talk about Vick's Vapor rub overload. Poor little guy. He's doing good tonight.... so far!
Daryl and I getting ready
Exiting the swim in 11:26
Exiting the bike (20.9 mph average)
My support crew, sans Teresa : ( you were with me the whole time
Jul 22, 2008
Jul 18, 2008
Jul 17, 2008
Jul 8, 2008
I was recently asked by a friend what milestones the boys have hit and I didn't have a real good answer. It seems like every day they're doing something new/different but nothing that can be easily described or summed up in words. I mean, how does one explain the silly new faces being made or goofy laughter or puckering of the lips resulting in a funny noise. So many little things... Caden has started to sleep on his side... Cole likes to shake his head when he's had enough food... In the last month or two, they've both come to enjoy bathtime (except when I give them a bath and forget to put the bath pad down). The major milestones, other than sleeping through the night... they've been doing that for 2+ months, are right around the corner. Crawling, walking, talking, feeding themselves, etc.
I've been slowly working on a scrapbook for each of the boys and have a goal to finish by the 15th (one week from today). I enjoy scrapbooking but tend to get carried away, spending way too much time on one page.... which is why it's taken me so long.
Jul 2, 2008
Jun 20, 2008
Jun 13, 2008
Other than all that, babies are still the most incredible things ever. Cole is very much a Daddy's boy. Teresa says he's my mini-me. Caden is still our crazy guy. He went through a 3-4 day phase of laughing like Woody Woodpecker.
I'm infected with the melodic tunes of the new weezer album. They (Rivers Cuomo) never fails to please. Hope to catch them on tour this summer/fall. Going to see the new M. Night Shyamalan movie tonight with a friend. I've avoided seeing the trailer, so other than seeing the movie poster and knowing who the lead male actor is, I have no idea what to expect, which is great. I'd love to walk out of the theater feeling like I did after seeing The Sixth Sense.
Cowboy Rivers... almost as good as bearded Rivers
May 30, 2008
May 29, 2008
Loaded with all this information, I feel a lot more confident that I can do the job myself (with a little help of course). My first step was to mark the beds using some 6" nails and household twine. Teresa and I decided on a curved pattern similar to the shape of the sidewalk leading to our front door. The engineer/nerd in me drew up the design in AutoCAD in order to get exact coordinates to use when placing the nails in the ground. The nails were probably enough for me to visualize the curvature of the bed but the twine wrapped around and between each nail takes the guesswork out of it. I then mowed down the grass/weeds that fell within the newly marked off area and sprayed it with RoundUp. The grass should be dead/browned in 7-10 days, at which time I can rake it all up. In the meantime, Teresa and I are going to steal some ideas from our many neighbors whose beds are already planted. I'm also planning to have approximately 12 cubic yards of topsoil and 6 cubic yards of mulch delivered next Friday. Still have to work out the details around getting the shrubs, trees, etc.
May 27, 2008
May 20, 2008
Mile 1 (6:06) was either short or I went out way too fast. I know 6-minute pace and it felt way too easy for that so I assumed it was short and kept the pace steady. The rain was steady as well. Passed through mile 2 in 6:18, which seemed right given the downhill section on E. 9th heading towards the Rock Hall. The climb up W. 3rd came in mile 3 and I was fortunate enough to fall in behind one of the most consistent sub-3 marathoners I know of, Steve Godale. He backed the pace way off and I made sure to hold back as well (mile 3 - 6:50). For the next 4 miles I paced off him and another guy and averaged 6:33's, each mile within a few seconds of each other. Mile 7 may have been slightly faster than the rest as I was anticipating seeing my family and friends for the first time. Took my first gel at the mile 7 water stop (Vanilla PowerBar). It was there that I lost Godale, but this was a good thing as he went on to run a 2:49. The rain had let up a little by mile 6 but was coming down again at mile 11 or so. I was well ahead of sub-3 pace at this point but wasn't feeling too confident. Someting about the weather and the occasional headwinds caused my mood to be off. Plus, as usual, I found myself in no-mans-land, having no one to pace with and/or keep me going. This is where the mental toughness built up during long training runs comes into play. If I was lacking one thing heading into this race, it was this.
My half-marathon split was 1:27:08 (2:54 pace). I mentioned a handful of changes I'd like to see on the marathon course and the stretch down Chester Ave. is one of them. The half marathoner's peeled off at mile 12, leaving a very desolate field. Not too spoil the ending of this entry, but placing in the top 50 in a race as small as Cleveland means a lot of running solo. Running alone in the rain down what was essentially an abandoned street got to me a little and caused for a slow miles 14 and 15 (6:58 and 7:09). Teresa was waiting for me at mile 16 with the babies, which was enough of a pick-me-up to get me back on pace (mile 16 - 6:39). My plan to clock a few fast miles leading up to mile 20 didn't exactly play out but I managed to average 6:53 over miles 17-20 and was still on 2:56 pace heading into the final 10K.
In the back of my head, I didn't feel I was prepared to run a sub-3 marathon. I just kept thinking to myself, there's no way 25-30 miles per week over the previous 4 months would cut it. My fast start allowed for a few slower miles on the back half, but I couldn't afford any more than one or two miles over 7:10-7:15. Mile 21, 7:27. I knew then to refocus on finishing consistently and as strong as possible. My focus showed up in the form of my good buddy Lou who helped pace me through to the finish. Lou kept me upbeat and helped supress the negative thoughts that wanted so desparately to do me in. Given how I was feeling at the time, I'm surprised to see that I averaged 7:47's from mile 22-26. Even managed consecutively faster miles 24-26. In hindsight, this was a small victory. So too was the finishing kick I laid down the last 385 yards (0.2 miles for those keeping score at home). Official time: 3:02:22, good enough for a top 50 finish at Cleveland for the 2nd consecutive year.
I'm very grateful for my family and friends who came out to support me. Teresa especially as she made it to three spots on the course (not easy with twins in tow). The finish line of a marathon is one of my favorite places in the world. Finally being able to hug and kiss and talk to everyone makes it all worthwhile. This year was especially amazing as my twin baby boys were there to greet me. Caden was awake and smiling at the sight of me. Cole must not be a big fan of distance running as he was passed out. I can't wait until they're big enough to cross a finish line with me!
May 12, 2008
May 9, 2008
I've got a gameplan for the marathon. No idea what the weather is going to be like on race morning. It's been pretty rainy of late. If not rainy, overcast and dreary. I'll take dreary so long as the temps and winds are mild at the start.
Some new pics of the twins are below! Can't say enough about these little guys! They're amazing in every way!
Cole - May 1st
Caden - May 1st
May 5, 2008
I squeezed in two great workouts over the weekend. Saturday night after the babies were asleep and Teresa was home from work, I did 8x800 meters (the culmination of the Yasso 800 buildup) with each 800 < 2:55. Send-offs ended up being closer to 4:00 because I was running from one end of my development to the other which, surprisingly, is pretty darn close to 800 meters on the nose. Final 800 in 2:49.
My long run this morning wasn't quite as long as I was hoping. I started 15 minutes late and had to take a couple pit stops (hope that issue resolves itself in the next two weeks!). In all, I did 17 miles at 7:25 pace with a 6:36 final mile. Strangely enough, my final mile felt as easy, if not easier, than the rest and it was then that I felt "warmed up". I wonder if holding back from my natural pace is causing me to work harder. Hmm, something else to ponder over the next 13 days.
I think my 3-year old iPod shuffle played it's last tune this morning... hopefully it's just the headphones.
May 1, 2008
Apr 29, 2008
The heart of the workout is without question the first 3 miles done at 6 minute pace following an easy 3 mile warm-up. I hit all 3 miles in 5:59 but felt completely drained afterward. I walked for a few minutes feeling slightly dizzy and nauseous. I slowly took down the gel with water and eventually started running again. By the end of my 8th mile I was feeling slightly better but had a side stitch that wouldn't go away. I started into a fast miles 9 and 10 and bailed about half way through, succumbing to the side stitch. I normally would fight through something like this, but not during a Tuesday morning traning run. I was happy to have done what worked out to an intense 9-mile tempo run. Plus I had a few extra minutes to strength train.
Apr 23, 2008
Congratulations to everyone who ran this past Monday!
Apr 14, 2008
With faces like these, who wouldn't be inspired?
Apr 9, 2008
I ran for the first time in my new Saucony Grid Fastwitch 3's that I picked up over the weekend along with a pair of triathlon specific shoes from Zoot.
Apr 7, 2008
Apr 2, 2008
Mar 31, 2008
I'm going to head up her cheering section on that day, which is also her birthday. If you're in the Cleveland area on that day, come out and celebrate with us!
Mar 17, 2008
Yesterday while trying to kill some time and keep the twinfants occupied, I strapped them in our jogging stroller and did some laps around the house. They really seem to like it and would start fussing every time I stopped, even if just for a moment to make sure they were doing OK. I told them all about how I came to run my first marathon. It's nice having an audience who isn't bored with my running stories : )
Feb 25, 2008
Feb 8, 2008
"The air flew in their faces as if they were driving fast in a car without a windscreen. The country flew past as if they were seeing it from the windows of an express train. Faster and faster they raced, but no one got hot or tired or out of breath. If one cold run without getting tired, I don’t think one would often want to do anything else."
Having read all of the Narnia books, I know this passage speaks directly to a tireless devotion to a faith-based life, which I think is a great analogy (especially for children who read the stories). However, I can't help but pull from it what every longtime runner has already experienced and what new runners strive for, that moment when running is no longer a struggle and you actually feel like you could run forever and do nothing else with your life.
It's important to maintain perspective as a runner. I didn't start out as a sub-3 hour marathoner, nor will I remain one. I know where I came from and where I've been and can fully appreciate each in the same way I will continue to appreciate the endless possibilities of a lifelong runner.
Jan 21, 2008
Jan 14, 2008
Had a great 8-mile run on Sunday. Again, thought to myself prior to starting that I'd go at it easy, but hit my first mile in 6:38 so I figured what the hell... I'll make this a tempo run. Mile 2 - 6:19, 3 - 6:22, 4 - 6:32, 5 - 6:57, 6 - 6:28, 7 - 7:00, 8 - 5:57. Was a little too tired afterwards to do much weights so I settled on about 30-minutes of core work.
Congratulations to those who ran in either the full or half marathon of yesterdays P.F. Chang's Rock-n-Roll Arizona. Frank and Kelly did great as did my TNT crew!
Jan 6, 2008
I did a 7-mile tempo run this afternoon and was very pleased with my splits. I shouldn't be so surprised but that's what a few months of next-to-no traininig will do. Anyway, did one of my favorite tempo runs with the following times: Mile 1: 7:06, Mile 2: 6:53, Mile 3: 6:00, Mile 4: 5:53, Mile 5: 7:51, Mile 6: 5:59, Mile 6-6.5: 4:15, Mile 6.5-7: 2:52
The earlybird registration deadline for Cleveland is this Thursday. Committing to a marathon (atleast financially) is one of the biggest motivators for me. I know finding time for my long runs will be a challenge in the coming months. I'm all about challenges though!