Thursday, March 27, 2008

To Fart or not to Fart -- Speed Play

Fartlekking is one of the best ways to improve your endurance, whether you're a beginning or and advanced runner. Read this Austin, Tx. article on the Fartlek technique.
Watch any group of kids during recess at school and you will see a modified fartlek going on. They jog for a while, sprint, then jog some more, sprinting to the bathroom and then jogging back to the tetherball court. Without knowing it, they are getting in a great workout--and thats the key to fartlek. It keeps the mind fresh, while the body is hard at work. Fartlek is a far less structured type of speed training. I believe that the saying "to race fast, one must train fast", is really true. Get out there and start Fartlekking!!

One tough race

Here are my two good friends, Leslie and Florencia. This pic was taken during the CTM 100k race in Ojai California. They finished in 17:21! This was the first running of the Coyote Two Moon race and featured both a 100 mile and a 100k event. Rumor has it that it was very difficult. Congrats to 100 mile winner Karl Meltzer with a winning time of 19:24! Andy Jones-Wilkins was 2nd in 23:48! In the 100k David Groggins won in 12:50! Wow, it sounds like it was an awesome event not to be missed. Congrats to all my friends who had the guts to start and finish this grueling race.

I am keeping up with my training and faithfully doing my push-ups. Getting out the door to do a run alone is the hardest thing for me. Once I am out, it is fine. It's just getting out and on the trail that is so difficult. I need to practice mind over matter. This Saturday I have planned a long run. I hope the weather holds out and that I have some company out on the trail.

"The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes of mind." William James

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Happy Keester!!

Happy Easter everyone and that's no yolk!!

Today Suzanna and I drove to Oakland and met our good friend Dan Williams and the Diablo group for a long run. It was a beautiful day here in Northern California. We ran through open green vistas and through meadows of brightly colored wild flowers. We also ran through beautiful rock formations. Our run took about 7.5 hours and started at Skyline gate and we ran to the top of Mt. Diablo and back down to a car that took us to our car at Skyline gate. It was a fun group. Thanks Dan for the invitation to run in your neck of the woods :)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Great news for Courtney

Dear Courtney,
Congratulations! I am pleased to offer you admission to the University of Southern California. This offer is being extended to you as a result of your outstanding achievements both in and out of the classroom..for all the late nights and weekends you devoted to study, and the times you went beyond what was expected of you.

This is the first paragraph of the letter my youngest daughter received today in the mail. I am so ecstatic for her. She is a great student and an even better daughter. She is so excited as well. She also got into NYU, but she would prefer to go to school in Southern Cal. She is still waiting on a few more schools, but she did find out today that she did not get into UCLA. Apparently, there was 55,000 applicants with only 4,700 spots. Not great odds. Bummer.

Running has gone well this week. My new orthotics are perfect and my ankle is getting stronger. I think I may have mentioned that I pulled out of the Coyote Two Moon 100k that is this weekend in Southern California. I didn't feel ready and I don't want to start a race feeling like I haven't done my homework. I have a few friends running the 100 miler and the 100k there, so I hope they have a great race.

Saturday I am planning on doing a 32 miler from Skyline Gate to the top of Mt. Diablo. It will be hard and it should be fun. I can't wait!

For those of you waiting with baited breath....I did 7 push-ups in a row today!! I know it sounds wimpy, but I am improving. Have a nice evening!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Get Busy with push ups!

According to a recent New York Times health article on push-ups, a 40 year old woman should be able to do 16 Full push-ups in a row without rest, and a man of the same age should be able to knock out 27 push-ups.

The article states that push-ups are an excellent measure of fitness because they work so many parts of the body at once, not just the back, chest, arms, and shoulders as some people think. Your core, glutes, and leg muscles must also be held rigid while you perform the exercise with only your hands and toes on the floor. The ability to perform multiple push-ups is an indicator of an individual's strength and endurance, measurable factors which may help them as they age since up to 30% of a person's muscular strength can be lost between the ages of 20 and 70.

Now if that isn't enough to get you people on the push-up band wagon, I don't know what else will. I am going to continue doing them and I am confident that I will be happy with the results. I'm sorry to leave you, but I have push-ups to do!

An Awareness Test

Last week, two cyclists were killed and another seriously injured when a sheriff's car crossed over the center line into oncoming traffic. It's tragic on all fronts. Try this awareness test.

It's easy to miss something you're not looking for. Look out for runners and cyclists.

Yesterday Suz and I went for a nice mountainous run on our favorite trails in Sugarloaf. It was a beautiful day and it felt so good to be out enjoying the clear day. I wore my new orthotics for the first time and they felt great. It's exciting to have something new to wear. (even if they are in my shoes.)

My youngest daughter Courtney is eagerly awaiting to hear from Colleges that she has applied for. NYU, Boston, and UCLA are her biggest reach colleges but I believe she deserves to go to anyone of them. She has worked so hard and she is so bright. I just want her to get into the college that is the right college for her. The college she is meant to go to.

Today Suz and I ran at Lake Sonoma. We had a great run and only got sprinkled on the last 10 minutes. I so wish I had had my camera. We saw three newts fighting over a worm and they struggled with each other as they pushed and pulled the poor worm in all directions. We also saw two vultures sitting on a large rock with their wings spread out drying themselves. Lastly, we saw a dead pig as we crossed a creek. I wanted the skull, but unfortunately, the skin was still intact. I quickly decided against bringing that home. (Aren't you proud of me, Matt?)

I hope everyones weekend is filled with good things. I think I will get up and get my butt into the pool tomorrow. It's been a long while since I have been swimming. I think it is time for some cross training.

I hope you enjoy the pictures above. They were taken from a hunter in Montana.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A beautiful day for a run!

On Sunday, Florencia, Leslie, Suzanna, and I ran at Pt. Reyes. It was an incredibly beautiful, warm day at the beach. I ran just 20 miles, as I turned off early to get home to hang out with Chelsea before she left for school. Florencia, Leslie and Suzanna ran about 30 miles. There was so many people out on Sunday! Cyclists, runners and horseback riders. Being out on a day like that is what it is all about.

I feel like I am getting my conditioning back. I didn't feel real tired after the 20 miles and that is really encouraging. I am continuing to do my boy pushups and a patient of mine showed me the correct way to execute the squat yesterday. Things are looking up! Have a great day today!

Don't complain; just work harder.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Winter in the Wasatch Mountains

We cannot lower the mountain, therefore we must elevate ourselves

A beautiful weekend

I am tired today. The last four days has been full of good quality running. Matt and I are resting today and spent most of the morning loading up the truck with brush and clippings and hauling it to the dumps.

When I was a kid, the dumps was one of my favorite places to go. Well, it was one of my favorite places to go as an adult too. But the dump is different today, and it is not quite so entertaining:)

I have been a wimp with push-ups and have always done them girl style. Yesterday, I hammered out 15 boy push-ups!! Of course, not all at once, but it sure made me feel good. I just need to remember to do them and soon I will be really buff. Ha Ha. There is something so scrawny about my arms and back. I need some definition. FAST!

Last week I went to a sports podiatrist and he fitted me for some custom orthotics. I hope that they will help support my bad ankle. He is confident that they will. I also joined the Tamalpa Running group which is in Marin County. I am looking forward to running with them more often.

My good friends Chris Garcia, Tom Crull, and Olga Varlamova are running Old Pueblo 50 mile today. I hope they are having a great run out there. Rumor has it that it is very warm out there. RD's Duane and Juli Arter are just great. Unfortunately, this is their last year as Race Directors.

Hope everyone is having a great weekend. It is a beautiful day here in Santa Rosa. Tomorrow I am running in Marin with some friends. Should be a hard run.