Saturday, October 25, 2008

Running early in the dark

Started running this morning at 5:00am from the Community Center with Kelly and Jamie. Kelly had mentioned earlier in the week that she needed a long run before work on Saturday, so since I wasn't racing anywhere and needed 10 miles, I volunteered. I was having seconds thoughts as to why I would do such a thing Friday night when I saw that the temps were going to be in the lower 40's. Jamie read a post on the Cruiser forum that we were running at 5 so she decided to jump in there with us.

Getting up at 4am to go run is almost insane. Especially when its 40 degrees outside. The lowest it has been this fall in fact. Once I got there and got started I was glad I did. We just ran a big loop route, looping through various neighborhoods to make our way back. It was almost surreal, no traffic, everything quiet except for us talking as we ran. Pretty much we had the city to ourselves which is pretty cool in itself.

The cooler temps made for one of the best runs I have had all year. We took very few walk breaks, maybe one every 2-2.5 miles if that. I finished with an average pace of 10:46 for 10 miles. I looked back in my training log and that was the best 10 mile training pace I have had all year. Whats up with that?? Must have been the cold, the dark and the other runners helping me push through the pain. And we ran some hills too. Best of all we were done before 7am so the whole day is ahead of us now.

I could feel my foot through the whole run, not bad but I could tell it was still hurting some. Tomorrow will tell how well my recovery is. At this point I guess I am just pushing the foot to see how much it can take or hopefully, make it stronger so it doesn't hurt. Plantar has to be the worst possible running injury there is.

Its all good though when your running early in the dark!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

St. Louis Fire Department- Quint vs Quint accident

If you haven't seen this twelve seconds of video, make sure you do. It is the close-up view of the two rigs that crashed in St. Louis on October 10, injuring eight firefighters. This is pretty powerful stuff. Remember, all eight firefighters were wearing seat belts and there were no life threatening injuries.

Getting the miles

Starting to get a few running miles for a change.

Monday night jumped on the treadmill for 3 or 4 but only ended up getting 2.3 as I got called out on a vehicle accident with the FD. My hamstrings were singing to me though. Must have been from the hard bike ride on Sunday afternoon.

Wednesday night Annette and I met Brenda and Kelly at the Community Center for a good night run. It was a good run I guess. I was slower than I wanted to be. But my goal stands just to stay around 10:20-10:30. Well, I am not there yet, or at least not last night. It was still a little warm to me, and once my head starts sweating bad, I'll have to walk just to get the sweat out of my eyes. Wish I had a good solution for that. I have tried different hats, bondi bands, etc. Think I'll get one of those sweat gutters that they sell at the bike shops and try. Once it gets cold it won't be as bad.

Anyway, I did end up getting 5.3 miles in, even though I walked a few times. My heart rate was getting up pretty good, must have been the heat and humidity, plus the route we ran had several inclines on it. Some of those kinda creep up on you. They look like a small incline but they are really long, slow, inclines. Averaged an 11:06 pace, actually thought it was much better than that but that's what my garmin said. I know we started out pretty fast at the beginning and Annette had to stop at Phillips 66 just before mile 1 so Brenda and I kinda slow jogged to wait on her. This brought the average down a lot but its all good. I got the miles and that's all I'm after right now. If the foot holds up to the mileage, then I can start working on the speed again.

It does suck to know that in April, I was running 9:20's for a longer distance than that. I ran a 9:35 average in February for the 15k. I looked back at my Nashville Marathon splits and at mile 20 I was averaging 11:07. I also have to take into account it was cooler then, though June I ran in the upper 7's for a 2 mile race. Sucks to be slow but I have come to the conclusion that I will never be a fast runner, but I hope to get back where I can at least cover the distance again.

It's all good though, any running is better than none at all. Even if your slow at it.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Multisport Sunday

This is starting to be a Sunday regular. Run in the morning then bike hard in the afternoon. A good way to burn calories that's for sure. Past two Sundays I have burnt over 2500 calories each day. Not bad.

This morning started with a great run with my lovely wife Annette. We haven't gotten to run long together in a while and I really wanted to get in 8 miles. So we started out around 9am. No rush to get out the door, it was still nice and cool out, sunny and probably around 50 degrees or so. The sun makes it feel a lot warmer though.

We ran one of Annette's routes that she runs with the girls some mornings and it was great. We held a nice steady pace up to just past mile 3 when Annette started having some stomach issues and she had to stop and walk. We ended up running on to Knights so she could use the potty. On the return trip we had to stop again at Phillips 66 but really other than that we pretty much ran the whole time. On the way back Annette wanted to head straight to the house but I only needed about a mile or less to hit my 8 mile goal so I made a loop around one of the neighborhoods. Finished up with 8 miles at an 11:04 average pace. In reality the pace was much better, we pretty much stayed at around a 10:30 pace but the bathroom breaks slowed down the average. I'm happy though. This was the longest run I have had since June. The other good thing is I can still walk and the foot is not killing me.

After the run we loaded the bikes and went over to James and Michele's for some breakfast or actually I'd call it brunch. It was after 11 at that point. We had planned on riding with the group at 1:30pm and it was "suppose" to be an easy ride. LOL......with some of the people I bike with there is no such of a thing. It didn't help that James sent Gary a text and told him that I was there eating with them and that Gary was going to have to ride my wheel all day if he wanted to keep up! That was enough to get Gary and Curtis fired up and drive to Cabot to ride.

We had a good group of bikers show up. There was at least 15. Annette was going to ride with Brenda and Vicki so they could ride easy and chat. I had hoped that was what we were doing but no way. Once we hit Kerr Station Road, Curtis took off like he was on fire. Gary followed and James was right with them. Russ and I tried to jump on but they were just too fast. We drafted each other for probably 6 miles trying to catch those three but it was useless. Even though we were doing 19-20 most of the time. The wind was a factor though. We had a head wind and it was hard work when you were pulling. James finally fell off just before we hit Military Road. Gary and Curtis kept on.

During that time a weird, funny thing happened. Curtis ran over a squirrel with his bike and when he did I guess his rear wheel threw it up in the air. It hit Gary in the chest and then bit him on the arm. Funny but very strange. He was going to call his doctor and ask about rabies shots or what he needed to do if anything.

We met Cindy C. at the store at Furlow for the final 8 miles in. Of course she took off with Curtis, James and Russ on her wheel before I could even get out of the parking lot. I tried to catch them but I was a lone biker and they were four. Gary caught me a couple miles out and he said he was going to try to catch them. So I got on his wheel for a few. At 24 mph it didn't take me long to drop off. That new tri bike he has is wicked and he is a good rider so the combination is hard to keep up with when he wants to turn it on and he was then.

Great ride though, even though it was much harder than what I wanted to do but I was glad I did it when we were done. Only 22.2 miles but considering we fought heavy wind coming and going, we did pretty good. Average pace was just over 17.5. Slower than what I expected but then again, I had tired legs from that run.

Also Saturday I ran 4.25 miles. Was going to do my 8 mile long run but I got started late and it was just too hot and sunny. I was half sick with a cold so I just said the heck with it. Glad I made it up on Sunday.

This past week started week one of my 16 week marathon training schedule for Huntington Beach. I'm not going to get too excited until I get a few weeks of long runs in and see how the foot feels. I will say I am not training for speed, though I still have the goal of running at least a 4:30.

Hope everyone has a great week!

Friday, October 17, 2008

The Endurance Path

Get out there and start to exert yourself.
Go long or go hard or both.
Begin to experience pain.
As you go further and/or harder, the pain increases.
The pain starts to annoy you.
You assess the pain: is it injurious?
If not, then you make a conscious decision to accept the pain.
You don't mind the pain.
You are not attached to the pain.
Finally, you accept the pain.
The pain just is.
After acceptance, you realize the pain doesn't matter.
Without it mattering, it can't contain or control you.
You have transcended the pain.
Now you can do anything.
Here's the critical part: As you go further or harder, the cycle can either be repeated or not.
You decide.
It's your pain.
Go with it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

No Pain

That's my new mantra. "No Pain"

I ran 10k on Sunday morning and I kept saying to myself over and over "no pain". Well, it seemed to work. Had one of the best runs I have had since June. Not super fast but I felt like I have almost got my running endurance back. Ran the first two miles without stopping or slowing down then took about 30 seconds to fix my Ipod. I can always find a good excuse for a break! Ran another mile solid back to the house where I had some water waiting and got re hydrated and then took off for what I had planned just to be another couple miles. The run felt so good that when I started getting close to 5 I decided to see what kind of 10k time I would end up with. Needless to say I wasn't racing or even trying to push the pace, just a relaxed pace run.

At mile 5 my legs felt great and strong. Guess all the hard biking was paying off. The PF in my foot was starting to rear its ugly head some but I just kept my mantra going and it was all good. Before I knew it I hit the 6.2 mark at 1:04:22. I didn't think that was too bad considering I wasn't even trying to do a tempo run. That ended up being a 10:22 pace and about dead on where I should be on my long, slow, steady runs. The weather was pretty nice as long as you were in the shade so at times I really felt like I could have ran forever. Great run and brought a lot of my confidence back even though the foot problem is still there. I'd have to say its about where it was just before I really hurt it in June. Some icing and a couple days of no running will help it.

Sunday afternoon I even got some biking in. I haven't even been back on the bike since the Big Dam Bridge 100 so I was glad to get on it again. Met up with James, Russ and Heather for the regular Cruiser 1:30pm Sunday ride. We had an awesome ride. Since the three of them are constantly training for triathlons, we worked on 20 minute hard intervals. It actually ended up being more like 20 minute races to see who could hang on. I really wasn't into pushing quite that hard since I hadn't been on the bike in a couple weeks but I hung in there ok. Heather and James pretty much left me and Russ in the dust most of the time. Heather has a new tri bike too and that thing is fast in the flats.

We had some pretty strong head winds at times but even with that there were times we were hitting 24 mph flat out with no help or drafting. It was a good hard ride and just what I needed. Right at 24 miles with a 17.4mph average. Not the fastest average but the wind on Highway 31 was brutal, probably 4 miles of a 15mph head wind made it hard to keep the 17-18 average. Also have to factor in the hills on Mt Tabor, Mt Carmel and 89. I did have to use my running mantra many times to get through it as my quads were screaming a few times. Good ride though!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Catching up again

Has been a super busy week for me. Trying to get caught up from being gone last week.

Monday - Monday night I had a good run. Jane, Michele, and Kelly came over to run with Annette so I jumped in for the first few miles. I'll have to say these four girls are my favorite's to run with as we all run a similar pace and they are always so much fun. At least I used to be able to keep up with them. I only did 2.5 miles, with about 1.5 running with the girls. First mile was a I was pretty much glad to turn around after that! I ended up with a 10:16 average pace which is good for me right now. They went on to make it 7 miles for the night.

Michele, Jane, Annette and Kelly having a small drink of beer to celebrate their 7 miles. Aren't they cute!! And no, Kelly didn't run in that hat.

Tuesday- 1:30am I get paged out for a structure fire. Fun fun. Got to the station and we had 3 others there plus me. The Chief took the tanker with Bobby driving E64 and me riding Captain. Billy was in the back jump seat. Communications told us that it was fully involved and that there was a hydrant a little less than 1000 feet away. We figured it would be over by the time we got there since it was all the way on the other side of the district.

Upon arrival, I had to take over command as one of the LT's that had command was running the pump on E65 also. I hate command, you have responsibility over the whole scene at that point and every one's life. At that point though it was pretty much a surround and drown situation. Still burning but since it was a mobile home, not much was left. They burn so fast, usually 5-7 minutes.

The deputy on scene advised me that the trailer was a "known" meth lab, but had been busted back in February so it had been unoccupied. We still had a bunch of crap to deal with. There were propane bottles everywhere and one was leaking to the point we could smell the gas. I hate propane tanks, as one large one like what most homes in the country have, if they explode, can take out about a 1/2 mile area. Not a good thing. That's why we have to protect those tanks with water or run like hell!

We also had two other fire departments on scene for mutual aid and by 3:00am we were loading up hose. I didn't feel like I did a lot other then tell people what to do and watch out for safety issues. Hope we didn't breath too much of that smoke! No telling what was in it. Guess I didn't feel like I smoked too much crack. I ended up getting home and back to bed at 4:45am, then back up for work at 6:20. Not much sleep!

Tuesday night - went to training at the FD and we discussed Incident Command and all the branches of it, span of control, etc etc. Just before we were done we got paged out for a rekindle of the fire from the morning. We sent a crew there with a brush truck and upon arrival they had a lot of fire at the back of what was left of the structure. They immediately called for an engine company to respond and since we had Engine 64 there from my station, we loaded a crew and went over.

Pulled one hose line off and had the fire out in a few minutes. Then when we started investigating. We found distinct signs that this was not a rekindle but arson. Someone had evidently thrown gas or some other flammable liquid on the back wall which was still standing. Makes you wonder why someone wanted the rest burnt down. Was there evidence still there of something else? Probably. We had the sheriffs office come out to take a look but really not much they can do. We all know its arson but not enough evidence to prove who did it. It is interesting to see the scientific evidence, even if nothing can be proven. Arson is one of the hardest crimes there is to prove and prosecute. We did get finished up around 10pm so at least it wasn't an all nighter again.

Do you think the gas can means anything??

Wednesday - Missed my run, which didn't make me happy. Annette's dad and step mom came in to town from Brazil so we went to visit them. I almost ran on the treadmill when we got home but just really couldn't muster up the motivation to do it.

Thursday - We have been having trouble with our Dish satellite receiver so I was on the phone with them for about 45 minutes when I got home. I had planned on running so this was costing me daylight. I wasn't a happy camper at all. By the time I got off the phone with those idiots, it was starting to get dark. Annette had rearranged all our running equipment so I couldn't find my lights so I gave up and headed for the treadmill. Got a 5 mile run in, averaged about a 10:40 pace. Not bad for me on the treadmill I figured. It's always harder to run on ours because its hot upstairs and even with a fan and a/c, there is not enough cool air movement. I slugged it out and actually could tell I was getting my endurance back. However, I could feel my foot most of the time. Afterwards I iced the foot, it was still pretty sore. Seems no matter how hard I try it still hurts at some point. Guess I just have to live with it or not run at all.

Have been debating on doing the Arky 100 bike ride on Sunday. I haven't been on the bike in almost two weeks now. I could still do it but I seem to be losing motivation. Plus I really don't know what to wear on the bike with the cooler weather. It is located in Sheridan so that's another issue. Pretty long drive from here. So, I have pretty much talked myself out of it. I would like to get some biking in this weekend but I really need the running miles. IF I am to do a marathon in February, I have to get started training. My goal this week is 15 miles running. I need 7.5 more to meet that goal. Hope to get that covered this weekend and maybe more.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Training Summary First Week of October

Since I was out of town almost all week I was pleasantly surprised to end up with much of anything this week. No bike miles unfortunately. I guess after last weekends 100 miler I just didn't have it in me but then again I was enjoying running. New shoes put a new spring in my step!

Monday - 2 mile run in the neighborhood. Pretty much a terrible run. It was hot and humid, just didn't feel it. 11:39 average pace. I could probably walk that fast.

Wednesday - out of town but got 1.5 miles on the treadmill at the hotel in my new shoes. Felt pretty good but there was no air circulation so it was pretty bad.

Saturday - AWESOME run. 5.2 miles in the neighborhood. Met up with Annette, Jane and Kelly while they were doing their long run. Gave Kelly a ride back to her car and then met up with Annette and Jane for more. The foot felt good and I felt a little faster. The air was cool and that helped a lot. Glad they were on about mile 11 or 12......made me seem fast to them, lol. Slugged out an 11:22 average pace. I would have ran probably 9:40's or better back in May for this distance.

Sunday - Should have rested but wanted to test the cool air. Still didn't even get out till around 8:30ish. The sun was up so it really wasn't cool then. Did 3.0 miles with almost a mile of it being on the grass at the soccer fields. Average pace 10:40 and had more to give. First mile was a 10:19, 2nd 11:06 and third 10:37. Pretty happy with these. The grass slowed me down but it was good.

Finished the week with 11.8 miles. Wow, second best week I have had since June! Maybe I can hit 17-18 this week and 20+ next week. We shall see.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

A New Lady In My Life

Yes, that's correct.

She is very pretty.

She is a red head.

She can be very flashy at times.

She loves playing in water.

She has very shinny teeth.

Guess you could say she is a BBW......or BB something.

Actually she was just conceived this year and by years end will weigh close to 18,000 lbs.

She is a big lady...........and will someday save lives, property and make a difference in someone's life.

If you haven't guessed already she is actually a fire truck. We just received the cab/chassis on our new engine this week. Today I met with Darrell at David's Fire to look at the truck and get some photo's. It is a VERY nice truck. It's a 2009 model Spartan chassis and when it's complete will have a Reliable Fire Equipment bed. Darrell, who is one of our Captains will be building the bed from the ground up, doing all the aluminum welding along with designing and painting it. He will also be doing the wiring and all the plumbing for the pump. He even builds the poly water tank. Talk about talent!

A few specs:
Cummins 360 HP engine - top speed about 66mph
Allison Automatic Transmission
Dual stage Waterous Fire Pump
Automatic tire chains
Completed bed will have roll up rescue doors
1000 gallon poly water tank
All lighting will be LED
Dual sirens, dual air horns
Will meet 2009 NFPA and EPA Standards

Here are a few photo's of my lady, whom I will soon be her Captain. Completion time should be around 90 days from now.

Front view-2009 Spartan Chassis -there will be a front mounted suction along with a trash line. You can see the dual sirens and dual air horns in the bumper.

Drivers side view. When done there will also be white reflective stripes at the bottom and chrome wheel covers

There will be a full LED lighting package, some are already on the truck

Both doors have this on the inside when you open them

This is the console, which will eventually house VHF and 800 megahertz radios along with siren control box

Crew air pack seats in the back. The captain's seat also will be air pack equipped

Two extra jump seats in the rear. Gives total crew capacity of 6 firefighters.

This is the first stage of building the pump panel. The pump itself is in the center. It will have two, 200ft pre-connected crosslays of hose mounted towards the bottom of the pump panel.

This will be the only time you see her bare butt!

As the truck progresses I hope to post more pictures of her progress so check back often.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Weird Shirt

On my way back from St Louis today I stopped in a fast food restaurant to grab some quick lunch. A guy walked by who was obviously riding a motorcycle since he had his leather chaps on. He had the weirdest t-shirt on I have seen in a while. It said "Organ Donor's Save Lives". Just seemed really odd that someone riding a motorcycle would be wearing that. After all, the usual non rider calls them Donor Cycles a lot of times which really annoys me, since I have one and bicycling is not much different, just slower and usually your not in the middle of the cars. I agree that being an organ donor is a good thing but I'm not going to advertise it on a motorcycle by wearing the t-shirt.

By the way, I did get 1.5 miles in on the treadmill at the hotel while I was away. It wasn't pretty though. We had just come back from eating at The Spaghetti Factory and I was still stuffed. Tomorrow I will try the new shoes out on the road and see if they hurt my feet.