Scary Treadmill

What’s scary is that for so many times I have B&M’ed amout running on treadmills, today I had actually a good feeling while on the rat trap, an almost scarily enjoyable one on a hotel in Cambridge, MA.

I’m here for meetings for Thursday and Friday. While a run along the Charles River would have been nice (we’ll see if there is enough time Friday), I opted for the dreaded machine… and had a great 30 minute workout!

If this keeps up, I may have to change my whole blog.

Labor Day is Over!

After a weekend of traveling for 2 weddings in 2 cities, it’s time to get back to the labor of running. I set out to do the 30 minute loop I did last week; a shorter variation of the regular 40 minute one I did a lot last year (this one has fewer hills in it; those will come).

I did feel sluggish but felt better after the first 3/4 mile.

The next 2 weeks present some more schedule challenges with 2 more trips to 2 more cities (Wednesday-Saturday in Boston; next Tuesday to Thursday in Boise).

If I can add one more gripe on the Nike iPad+ on the iPod nano– its how freaking hard it is to tell the damn thing you are done. After running, and sweating, how logical is it to have to manipulate a click wheel and navigate to a menu? My fingers kept slipping on the damn wheel and it took well over 70 seconds to make it cooperate.

It should be a one button click or at least something easier to do to tell the #*#&^$ that you are done.

Oh, and one more– why the heck are my podcasts not a choice to listen to? C’mon, where are the interface designers? Running?

My Tuneband gets here in a week; I look forward to running with my iPhone and a GPS app.

Three The Tired Way

I got home last night at 7:00pm from a work trip to Madison, and today at 3:00pm I’m headed out again- to Phoenix for a wedding tonight and to Denver Sunday for another wedding.

Although I thiught I had a solid night’s sleep, my feel to day was really lagging. Maybe its fatigue, maybe it was the heat, maybe its the running hate kicking in. So I just plodded along, and did a few walking stretches. At least with a holiday weekend there were a lot of things and people to gawk at. An old guy I passed who was walking gave me the big “thumbs up” and yelled, “IT’S SURE EASIER GOING DOWN THIS HILL THAN UP!”

Today I ordered a Tuneband so I can run with my iPhone 4 strapped to my arm and use RunKeeper– I’ve used the app for biking and love it’s maps and stats. The iPod+ is a neat idea, but in execution its lacking. It is not measuring distance at all, just counting steps, so when I walking today, I got more credit than I covered. If it were smarter, it might detect a slower pace, or be able to slip into a walking pace calibration. And why when I set the units to be miles, for a distance run does the last bit countdown revert to meters?

Just curious.

And tired.

Down By The Lake

cc licensed flickr photo shared by cogdogblog

This was the first out of town run of the season (not even a week old)- I’m in Madison Wisconsin for a site visit in the planning for the 2011 NMC Summer Conference. Today’s weather was gray and moist, but the trail along Lake Monona was a great spot for a 30 minute outing.

It was nice to chat with Lance Armstrong.

Well, it was one way.

I heard his voice on my Nike iPod+ chime in.. “CONGRATULATIONS! You’ve just reached the 250 mile mark.”

Thanks, buddy.

Two in a Row!

I ran again. Second time this week– first time I’ve done that in…oh… 8 months? Sunday I did 1.5 miles for first time out, this morning I did 2.6, so at this rate, adding a mile per outing, in a month I might be running 18 miles a day! Ha.

I just am going slow and steady as my body wakes up and says, “Hey, this routine is different.” I’m already feeling that bit when exercise seems to kick up the metabolism, with a midnight wake up to low blood sugar that was again sub 80 in the morning.

Now the real challenge starts as I being a September full of travel. I am headed to Madison, Wisconsin Wednesday through Friday; Saturday night I am in Phoenix for a wedding and Sunday I go to Denver for another wedding, and next Wednesday through Saturday I am in Bioston. Like the kid in Sixth Sense, “I See [dead people on] Treadmills”.

Just gotta keep going.

Note I’ve now registered for Team Diabetes to run the Jaunary 16 PF Changes. I’ll be bagging soon for sponsors, but the door is open.

Just Say No to Treadmills

I’m in Austin for an in Monday out Tuesday trip, but there’s nothing like being in a different city to make a run a little better. At 6:30am it was pretty damned dark out. Would this mean having to fight my hate of treadmills?

But after a light breakfast, at 7:30 it was light enough, though gray and perhaps rainy cold…. but 41 does not feel that cold compared to home.

Ran down Jacinto to the trail along Town Lake, a great running route. Just going easy, ignoring the little old ladies and crippled snails running past me. That last climb up Jacinto was an, er… nice way to finish.

Rewind? Who Me, Run?

Well, it has been 2 weeks of blissful non running, the shoes were sitting in the closet, still sporting the timer tag from the half marathon. I’d been doing some self beating up feeling like I had not run very strongly the whole route, and had to wake up and realized that all I needed to accomplish was finishing.

I’m never going to run a Boston pace, never going to blaze across the line in glory, but finishing a 13.1 mile run is something like only 1% of the people do (according to my coach, who sent a very encouraging email).

And yes, my colleagues online have called my bluff on all my “I Hate Running” attitude- if you hate it why are you doing it, they tweet.

There is a point. I don’t really like running, but doing it makes me feel healthier, and has done some good with my long term blood sugar levels. And it does feel damne good to cross that line, no matter the form.

So I want to see over the next week how it feels, and I am eyeballing a possible half marathon in April.

Today I just went out casually, doing a short run out on the muddy streets, among a lot of snow still sitting on the ground. The temperatures were nice, 50 degrees and sunny.

Ran, Run, Done.

cc licensed flickr photo shared by cogdogblog

This, for me, is the nice part of running.

Being done. Looking back on it.

cc licensed flickr photo shared by cogdogblog

Conditions were perfect today, at the start at 6:30am it had to be close to 50°F and must of peaked in the 70s during the day. I was surprised at how many people were cold, shivering, huddled in front of generators for heat; I was comfortable, and if anything, you want to start out a bit underdressed as the body heats up.

With the staggered start, it was almost 9:00 by the time I ran under the start line, trying not to lauch too hard at our Senatorial greeter, maybe politicians should really “run” to get elected?

cc licensed flickr photo shared by cogdogblog

Today’s experience was mixed. I went out feeling great, and was doing good 10:30 paces til about mile 7, when I tooka first walk break, and at about mile 10, I was feeling the signs of low blood sugar bonking me. I had to slow down to take some glucose tablets, grab the sweetened sports drink, and I shut my insulin pump off, but it just sapped me of energy, and the last 3 miles were more walking than strong running.

And I was so excited to see my friends Lisa, Psyan, and Devon waving wildly as I went by at 59th Street- thanks for coming out to show support! That boost got me up the next mile. Devon got a picture of me smiling, hardly looking like a guy who hates running.

But I finished at 2:41, far from my best time, but also far from the worst. Without the low blood sugar, I ought to have come in in around 2:25 or 2:30 easy. It all counts as having it ran, run, and done. And nothing beats that thrill of finishing.

For fun, or maybe distraction, I carried by small, old Canon pocket camera, and tried to capture the look of the experience by holding the camera chest high with my right hand, and taking a photo about everytime my music changed on the ipod. I also took my own photo, by while running, they way I did this was to rotate the camera over towards me, so my images are mostly upside down, somehow fitting. I mixed this into a movie :

Congratulations to all 30,000+ runners today, especially my fellow team-mates on Team Diabetes, and thanks also to Coach Dave for tireless effort in leading us, as wel as Brian and Jose for helping run the organizational aspects.

And thanks to everyone who sponsored me, the response rate to my early requests were astounding, and I was able to raise $2600 towards diabetes education and care.

Don’t ask me now about any future plans to run! I am just enjoying being done

Devils Distance

cc licensed flickr photo shared by Rev. Xanatos Satanicos Bombasticos (ClintJCL)

The Team D training schedule called for a 7 miler yesterday, but I decided to cross train and did my work out playing in the snow atop the Mogollon Rim.

Today’s run was 6.66 miles, meaning I did my map measured neighborhood loop (3.33) miles twice, once in each direction. The weather was very pleasant for early January- temps in the mid 60s and sunny, so I was out there in shorts and a long sleeve top. Coach Dave’s message said to take this week’s long run at a slow pace, which is certainly not hard to do (e.g. its my regular pace).

And it was my main goal to use this run to finally calibrate my Nike+ on my iPod nano, haivng finally figured the right key press combo to get the screen at the end of a workout to calibrate the device to a known distance. So I got the buttons right- press menu to Stop Workout then press and hold the center button to get the calibrate screen. And I was set to go, all I needed to do was to dial in the 6.66 miles down from the 7.52 it incorrectly listed– and damned if while using the click wheel, my tired fingers slipped before dialing to down to 6.66 (I dont even know where it was at, maybe 6.9).

You only get one chance to do this, there is no way back to the calibrate screen.

I’ve railed on enough about this, but this interface majorly sucks. There is no forgiveness for fiddling with buttons at the end of a run, when my dexterity is far from on target.

Oh well, at least I got in a good distance the devil’s distance of 6.66….

Snow and “I Cannot Run a Lie”

I’ve been riding the express Excuse Train, actually, maybe upgrade to the Excuse Jet Liner First class, not running one centimeter since last week’s 12 mile long run.

I could hold out no longer, and avoided the Big Train today given it is cold outside (32°F), late (4:30pm) and it was snowing. But I got done my usual neighborhood loop, for another reason… You see, I have been a bit lazy and for all my training up yp a week ago I admit being a

cc licensed flickr photo shared by Dyanna……

I’ve suspected my Nike+iPod was giving me more distance than I actually ran, and thus my paces were not as good as I thought. This was obvious when my runs with Team D of 5 and 12 miles came out as 5.7 and 13.7, so my actual distances were 87% of what the Nike+ was reporting.

I’ve known I needed to calibrate it, but kept thinking I needed to go to a track or something more accurate than what my car odometer might measure. But then, I did the revolutionary thing… I read the instructions. The manual says I can calibrate after finishing a run- right there ion page 13 it says:

To calibrate using your latest completed workout:
* iPod nano: Choose End Workout, then choose Calibrate. Set the correct distance you walked or ran, and press the Center button.

So I set my route using the tool on, which gave the route 3.33 miles (that matches well since the Nike+ reports it as 3.76 miles, so again, actual distance is 87-88% of actual).

I did the run, knowing I really wanted to finish it to get this calibration right…. and stop running a lie. It was not that bad running out there, except for knowing I was slowpoking it, but with the new running top, knit hat, gloves, new running pants, I was plenty warm.

I did the loop, pressed End Workout…. and then never saw any option to Calibrate as the instructions above said. To be sure, I did two more tries, turning on the Nike+, walking in a few circles, repeating the instructions…. and again never got the Calibrate option.

Only one expletive came out of my mouth…. oops, I am ying again, a few ripe words did get said in the direction of Beaverton, Oregon.

Choose End Workout, then choose Calibrate. Set the correct distance you walked or ran, and press the Center button.

So for now on I am using map tools to get the right distance; I did adjust my spreadsheet of running logs to reduce all previous runs to 87% of their Nike+ reported values.

But now I know the reason why I cant calibrate.

The printed directions are wrong. The directions I found online are slightly different. Rather than

Choose End Workout, then choose Calibrate. Set the correct distance you walked or ran, and press the Center button.

the ones online read:

1. Press the Center button, and choose End Workout.
2. At the Workout Summary screen, press and hold the Center button.
3. Choose Calibrate.
4. Select the actual distance you walked or ran, and press the Center button.

“Press and Hold” is rather different then “choose”.

I’m being rather picky, but the printed instructions are wrong. Waaaaaa.

No more running lies.