Wednesday, April 29, 2009

1st 5K of the season...things are really good right now

Girlfriend got on my case to blog about the Cherry Creek Sneak, and I realize that I promised you all I would give updates periodically. we go!

On Sunday morning, we both woke up and neither of us were really in the mood to get out of bed. But I'm not a fan of paying 30 bucks for a race T-shirt for a race I didn't run in (ok, the Twin Cities marathon performance shirt, maybe). So we manned up, I made us some eggs while girlfriend made us some toast, and we went to Cherry Creek.

After peeling off some layers, stretching, and warming up, I was feeling really really good. You know that feeling that you're going to run well? Yeah, that's what I had. However, being the good boyfriend that I am sometimes accused of being, I promised girlfriend I would stay with her the whole race.

And they're off in the Cherry Creek Sneak! (sorry, I'm a nerd and the Derby is this weekend) The first mile, of course, always sucks. Jockeying for position, figuring out a solid pace, etc. By the first mile, we did about 11 minutes per mile, so I wanted to pick it up a bit. We did, even with me having to stop and tie my shoe. I was shocked at how good I was feeling; it's really strange.

In the final mile, I saw girlfriend struggling, but I stayed with her. I think we feed off each other ridiculously. In the final .1, she told me to go, so I did. I ended up finishing in 32:07, which isn't great, but given that it's my first race of the season, I'll take it.

I'm really getting into the groove I was hoping I would. Went for a good run this morning, plan on doing it again tomorrow. Tomorrow I will do endurance. Sunday = another race. Time to crack 30:00 again!

Pushing My Limits

First off, ended up not doing sprints last night. Way too tired and had to open at work today (that is, be there by 4:15am).

HOWEVER, I did go for a long run today.

In fact, it was the longest run I've ever done in my life (... so far).

I've been thinking about doing this one loop - leave the house, go down some trail to the main road, loop back up and around. So I did it today and almost regretted it. It was long, windy, hilly and it made me its bitch. The wind actually made my right eye tear up under my sunglasses so I had tears dripping down the right side of my face. I also had to walk several times, which is kind of disheartening. Still ... I finished and I finished it running.

4:34 mi in 47:24 = 10.55.3/mi

Just under an 11 minute mile for that long of a duration ... THAT INCLUDES WALKING? I'll so take it. I'll also take it considering last week's long(ish) run was about three-quarters of a mile shorter AND my mile time was eight seconds slower.

Here I go improving, slowly but surely!

*this post is brought to you by t's sunburned face. t got sunburned on sunday and would like to remind you to WEAR SUNSCREEN if you don't already on a consistent basis, especially now that the weather is getting warmer. she was smart and wore it today, though. this post is also dedicated to whomever discovered aloe and its practical application in sunburn relief.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Race #1 of the Season: Cherry Creek Sneak

This past Sunday, Brandon and I ran our first race of the season - the Cherry Creek Sneak. We also did this race last year - it was Brandon's first race and the day he officially became a runner (or so we said).

I wasn't expecting too much out of this one, especially since we ended up signing up for the 5K version of the race instead of the 5mi version we had originally hoped to do. Still, run it we did.

I got prepped the night before after my shower by tossing on my "winner" underwear - I wore them the night before the Autumn Color Run last year which ended up being my best race of the season. So, I figured it wouldn't hurt to actually wear them for a race.


We got to sleep and then woke up Sunday morning ... although it was cold in the house and we didn't want to get up. Still, we did, got ready, ate breakfast and were out the door by 6:45am. Although the race didn't start until 8am, we wanted to get there early so we could park before they closed down the last of the streets.

We got there in plenty of time, parked, decided to get rid of a layer or two as it was warmer than said it would be, warmed up and stretched and I decided to poop (it was a decent poo. good sign!). We also wandered around what would end up being the post-race area in search of some PowerAde for Brandon ... and took pictures.

Cherry Creek Sneak
Cherry Creek Sneak

Finally, it was time to line up for the race.

Cherry Creek Sneak

Aaaand, we were off! Given that it was our first race of the season, we decided to run it together. Brandon's in a bit better shape than I am so it was a bit of a struggle for him to stay with me and my slow pace, but he did anyway.

He had his iPod for his Nike+ thing ... which helped a bit in keeping pace. We did the first mile in about 11 minutes, which was a little slow, but the first mile of a race always sucks, with getting into a groove and jockeying for position and dodging people and whatnot. We picked it up a bit during mile two, as we cut it down to a 10-something minute mile. I was in a bit of pain, but I kept moving; Brandon had to stop twice to tie his shoe.

We were hoping to make the last 1.1 miles our quickest, but I know it didn't happen with me (... well, maybe. don't know my actual splits; just my average). Brandon stayed with me until near the end when I told him to just go and finish. So, he sprinted ahead of me while I kept going. I took a picture of one of the FotoJack people, but it was too blurry for me to keep. :( Here's hoping that one makes it through ...

Anyway, I had just enough for a final kick to sprint across the finish line ... which I did in 32:47.5 for a 10:33.28/mi average. Definitely not my best race, but when I looked back on my race times from last year ... it was just over what I did for my third race last year. So ... given that it was my FIRST race this year ... I'll take it.

Cherry Creek Sneak
All smiles after the race!

Sprints tonight, longer run tomorrow, lifting Thursday, softball game on Friday ... and the Colorado Rockies' Home Run for the Homeless on Sunday!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Well Hot Damn.

I ultimately decided against a workout yesterday as I still didn't have full mobility in my limbs from that killer lifting session on Tuesday. However, as I'm mostly (MOSTLY) back to normal today, I decided I'd go for a nice, long run.

So I did. It's in the 70s and breezy - well, I should amend that to say downright windy depending on which direction you're moving in - and basically nice being outside weather. The run was kind of a bitch. I had to walk a few times due to both sore muscles and my lungs/sports asthma, but I managed almost two miles (and one big honking hill) before the first walk.

Despite that, I manged to run the last mile or so straight ... though coming into home never looked so good.

While entering my info into Voomaxer on Facebook (logs your stats! easy way of figuring out your average mile if you're cheap like me and don't have a watch for splits!), I got totally bummed out when I saw it was almost a 14 minute mile.

Then I realized I'm retarded at math and 2:36-3:15 is 39 minutes and not 49 minutes. What, I'm a journalism major. We joked that COM (actually college of communication) stood for College of Optional Math.

That small little change affected me big time - 3.55 miles in 39:17 for an 11:03.94/mile. Which, considering how little I've worked out AND the walking I did is pretty damn good.

So, even though my swimming and lifting has been ridiculously disheartening, at least my run today gave me some optimism and more motivation.

Thursday, April 23, 2009


I don't know whether it's the imminence of the Cherry Creek Sneak (SUNDAY!!!!) or the tri (END OF JULY!!!!) or the good weather (!!!!) after the giant snowstorm we had out here, but Brandon and I have been motivated lately.

Don't get me wrong, we've had our struggles - including the lifting session Tuesday that STILL renders walking painful - but for the most part, we've pushed onward and upward.

I posted last Wednesday that we ran, which we did. But, I didn't manage another workout until Sunday the 19th, when I swam. It wasn't a good swim workout given that I've been weak and out of shape and sick for what seems like forever, but I managed.

4x25m free
4x100m breast
2x25m kickboard

Monday, it was treadmill sprints, and murderous ones at that. I was on the treadmill for 11 minutes and was dead after those 11 minutes. Walked for two minutes easy, then did the following:

2:00-2:15 run 8.0mph
3:00-3:30 run 8.5mph
4:00-4:45 run 8.5mph
5:00-6:00 run 8.5mph
7:00-7:15 run 8.0mph
8:00-8:30 run 8.0mph
9:00-9:45 run 8.0mph
10:00-11:00 run 8.0mph

Basically, it was a variation of a bike sprint workout I did for hockey in college. 15 on, 45 off. 30 on, 30 off. 45 on, 15 off. Minute on, minute off. Rinse, repeat. I maybe could have pushed myself another set at 7.5mph, but honestly, I don't know if I could have. Still, one hell of an interval workout.

Tuesday, Brandon and I lifted for the first time in forever as well. We did some squats at the squat rack and I was basically reduced to tears knowing how far I've fallen in strength from two years ago. Then, it was most of some Men's Health workout he found ... which we've decided is seriously only for people who already lift a ton and are looking for variation. Anyway, it was wide-grip deadlifts, reverse lunges while holding a weight above our heads and then some YTWLI lifts on a ball. What that means is you're balanced on a stability ball just below your chest holding dumbbells and you make each letter doing some specific lift.

It. Was. A. Bitch. 8-10 reps of each letter, do each five letters without stopping, rest? HA. RIGHT. It was so hard. We kept dropping our weight just to get through it, but we managed.

That workout killed us to the point where walking - hell, MOVING - hurts. Still, we managed another swim workout last night.

50m breast warm up
4x25m free
2x200m breast
1x100m breast sprint
50m back cool down

That brings us to today. Brandon, due to his flying schedule, is taking today off. I might, but I'm thinking more likely that I'll go for a run. We'll see, though. I do need an off day eventually ...

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Just So You Know ...

Been a lot of working out up in here lately, but no blog posts. I'll remedy that tomorrow, recanting the past few days of pain. Yes, it currently hurts to walk/move/do anything. But ultimately, I love that pain so it's fine.

Just posting I guess to say that even though I'm not posting after every workout (because, as brandon said, it kind of gets repetitive), it's not like we're not working out ... unlike normal.


Friday, April 17, 2009

A run and an explanation

Hey everyone...

First of all, I have worked out since I've last blogged. I've actually done some intense shit in between. But for some reason, I just haven't felt the need to blog. I don't know what it is, but I think writing the same stuff every single time I work out is getting really old. "I went for a run today. It was good." "I lifted today. Here's what I did." You see what I'm getting at there.

So I will be shifting my focus on this blog to specific stuff. As you may remember, I do have a triathlon coming up in July (so does girlfriend) and I will begin talking about my tri training. The official date I begin my official "tri training" is May 7th, because that is the day I am purchasing my new bike!!!! Yep, Brandon has been saving money and is ready to take the plunge.

Also, I will blog extensively about the races I do this year. How does that sound? Feedback?

In any event, I did run the other day. It was 1.56 in 16:18, but being that both girlfriend and I are coming off of illness (seriously, my immune system has sucked this year), I'm satisfied. Plus she and I walked around DC a LOT!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


After being sick for like the last THREE FREAKING WEEKS, I finally got back at it today. I'm not 100%, but compared to a week and a half ago and just three days ago, I am super duper.

Felt better last week while wandering around Washington, D.C. for the Frozen Four (worked parts of it; alma mater won - GO BU!) and while Brandon and I had every good intention of going for a run, it didn't ultimately end up happening.

But. We did walk. EVERYWHERE. For me, I even walked the half-mile to the Verizon Center and back in HEELS. I'm sure that counts for extra calories somewhere.

Fun trip, though.
Washington Monument
Washington Monument!

The walking was great. Our legs got so so so so tired, but we had a ton of fun.
Brandon busting some sort of move.

Not all the pictures are uploaded; otherwise, I'd show you the doughnut we shared that was literally the size of my head (as some of you may have read on my facebook status).

Anyway, we've kept up the walking somewhat as we walked the almost four miles round-trip (like 1.93 mi there or something) to Target yesterday and walked back from the park today.

To get to the park, however, we ran. In theory, we will be running the Cherry Creek Sneak in about two weeks. Buuuut, since we've been sick, we're probably going to chop it down from our originally-intended five-mile race to just a plain old 5K.

Getting back on track, today's run. We were going to do most of the 1.35ish mile loop that we usually do, but instead of turning toward home, go down to the park instead. Yeah. That didn't work out so great. Heading up the hill (so within the first half-mile), we ran into this killer headwind that made us feel like we were running through sludge (or at least that's how i felt). So, instead of taking our turn, we turned it back around and just went back to the park the quick way. 1.56 miles in 16:21 for a 10:28.85/mi.

Not great, but eh. At this point, I'm just glad to be finally exercising again. I thank spring. SO HAPPY IT'S SPRING FINALLY ... despite that April + Colorado still = snow in many, many cases. *sigh*

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Sickness Sucks

So. Brandon got sick ... and now I'm sick. As a result, neither of us has worked out in a while. We were supposed to play hockey last night, but we had a scheduling snafu with scorekeeping ... so fail.

This is frustrating, but when staying horizontal is the only thing that makes you feel better ... you stay horizontal.