Sunday, October 28, 2007

The leaves are a fallin'

I've finally downloaded my pictures from the Fall N Leaf 100K cycling tour that I did a couple of weeks ago. The tour also has a 50K option and takes place in "Mid-Ohio" near Mansfield and Mohican State Park. The very well marked route takes you on back country roads (not 2 lane highways) where the wood burning fireplaces added a pleasant odor to the air; and I saw more cows than cars (which added a different sorta odor to the air)...

The terrain is quite hilly....lots of rollers.

A nice big granny gear is recommended. Over the 100K there was somewhere between 4500 and 4700 feet of elevation gain. The crests of many of the hills are STEEP. I think a 25T cogset would have been much better than my 23. I never had to dismount, but I really had to do some slow and hard peddling to crest some of the hills.

I'll be back to do this one again.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

The Bird that GETS DOWN......

If you have not seen Snowball, the dancing bird do his have to check this out.

It is Hilarious!!!!!!!!! I heard something last month about some dancing bird and finally saw him and it made my Saturday night.

And he has different dances for different tunes!!!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

I need a vacation.....

I am beat up. My knee hurts. My muscles are tired and achy. I have a sore throat. After a nice 50 minute run Tuesday night with a couple hill repeats I have made a sound decision to put away my running shoes for a spell. My friends, I am taking a vacation...

But just like my 70.3 mile journey around Northeast Ohio this summer I'm not really going anywhere. Well, except I am. This weekend I'll be @ the Bioneers conference. Actually, the conference came to me. Ok, not exactly....but it came to Cleveland State, where I happen to spend a little bit of my time. Tomorrow morning I'll start off my vacation with a tour of the urban farms here in Cleveland. That, my friends, is the way to start a vacation!!!!

Oh, and when I return from my vacation I'll begin the journey towards next summers of which will take me to the southern shores of Lake Michigan. I was contemplating which races I wanted to do next summer, and the ironveganmusician in town helped me make up my mind.

Good luck to my friends racing (and pacing) this weekend. Charlie, E-speed, and Paulie. I sense PR's and trips to Boston will be earned!!! And if you'd like a first hand description of the craziness that went on @ the Chicago Marathon, stop over to Janet's blog, and read about her experience there.

And as for my vacation experiences....I just might blog about something other than racing. And you were begining to think that's all I thought about anymore, weren't you?

Sunday, October 07, 2007

While I have a free minute....

What up Blogland!!! I have found a little time to give you an update on my past couple of weeks. I did a couple of great races and have been working on some fun stuff at the University. The rundown:

A couple of weeks ago I ran the Cuyahoga Falls Nat 5K. This is a really great race on a fast course. There were a couple of local speedsters at the front of the pack this year and the top 3 finishers all broke the course record (it is a 5 yr. old race). I ran what turned out to be my best race....of my 31 years, and PR'd with a 18:39 (6:00 pace). 2 out of 14 in my AG, and 7 of 274 overall. Hmmmm, all of the workouts over the summer have paid off, (literally)! They gave out awards for the first Cuyahoga Falls male and female resident to finish the race. I think I was actually the 2nd local male, but I got the award because the 1st place Falls resident won an overall award. And I got a $50 savings bond and a $50 gift certificate to Fleet Feet!!! Score!!

Last weekend was my impromptu half mary (not recommended) at the Akron Marathon. My dear peeps Treetop and J were training for their first marathon in Columbus, next weekend. J's knee did not cooperate. She had a registration for the half mary at Akron in preparation for her full, so she gave me her bib since she cannot run. I accepted even though I haven't run 10 miles or more since August and my "long run" since that time was a 10K at the Portage Lakes International Tri.

So, as for my first stand alone half mary...The weather was perfect!! Almost 7000 runners toed the line in downtown Akron at 7:00 a.m. I tried to stay with Treetop for the run, but had to let him go at mile 10 as I felt a SHARP pain in my right knee. I had to walk for probably 3/4 of a mile. I did not think I would be able to finish as I could not run one step. Finally, the knee pain went from sharp to dull and I trudged onward for the last 3 miles, coming in @ 1:45:37 (8:04 pace); good for 160th out of 1134 half marathoners, 25 of 84 in my AG. Here's a pic taken shortly after finishing...I'm not sure if I was still in pain, concerned about the cause of my knee pain, or just downright tired (thanks goes to one of the five fast femme fatale freaks for the pic).
Turns out my knee pain was my ITB, the first time my IT band caused me any knee pain. It hurt!! Sharp stabbing pain on the outside of my knee and underneath my kneecap!! I've been resting it and all seems to be doing well. I'll more than likely start running again this week.

The pic below I "stole" from the Akron Beacon Journals web page, and was taken at the race. No, of course that is not me, but I thought it was a great image. The story that ran about the pic said that the guy in the wheelchair (I forget how he lost his legs) was a high school sprinter in Akron, I think at Buchtel.

Remember my DNS at the Portage Lakes Tri a couple weeks ago?? HFP racing found my results! My swim was longer than I thought, and my run better than I thought. Another note, I took FOREVER in both transitions, especially T1. That's something to address next summer.

Now, on to academia...I am writing 3 research papers this semester, which should total 30 to 40 pages when completed. This is why I have no time to blog, and when I do I don't know what to say because all of the reading and writing I have been doing lately is technical, which does a number on my creativity.

I've also been working on a great project with CSU and a local community development corp. to turn an empty warehouse in the Detroit Shoreway here in Cleveland into a working farm. Yep, we're going to grow food in this building (and on the roof, in the yard, etc.) This project is something like this and this, except we are not building some multi-million dollar facility, but rather, we're on a tight budget and have to be as creative as possible to make this work and utilize all of our resources.

I have nominated myself to be one of our soil and water "experts" and have been learning about rain water diversion, composting and vermiculture. A couple of my goals for this project are to be able to collect all of the buildings water needs from the sky (i.e. rain), and to start a curbside composting program in the Detroit Shoreway neighborhood. The motivation for composting....discounts on the organic food we grow, of course.

Ok, it is 85 degrees this Sunday here in Northeast Ohio.....time to turn off the computer and hop on my bicycle....