Thursday, February 26, 2009

Deep Thoughts

"I can picture in my mind a world without war, a world without hate. And I can picture us attacking that world, because they'd never expect it." - Jack Handey.

Reason why the internet is awesome can be found here.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Random thoughts...

- There are very few Saturday mornings that aren't windy in central TX in January and February.

- The honeymoon isn't completely over with Obama, but it looks to be headed that way.

- I love craigslist, ebay, ... anything internet-based peer to peer.

- Facebook status lines = everything twitter has to offer. There's no way twitter is here to stay.

- Thank god for massage, yoga, chamois creme, ...

- First impressions are as accurate and inaccurate as they've ever been.

- Can't wait for Barton Springs cleanup to complete, and can't wait for the quarry lake to warm up.

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Austin Half Marathon

The Austin Marathon (aka the AT&T Austin Marathon circa 2008)... that course is no joke. We took it at about 85%, but I can imagine how I'd feel if I'd done the whole marathon or if we'd done the half at race pace. Wow. In a way, it makes me want to do the full next year. Maybe if I do the RunTex Distance Challenge... ;)

Anyway, it was a blast. Ran it with Chris, Matt, and Ben... who all kicked mucho ass (and not to mention also had 60 miles of cycling in the hills in their legs from Saturday, just like me). Very well run event - aid stations were well staffed, start was (relatively) on time, drop off/pick up was easy, and there were lots and lots of cheering fans... that's the best part. Conspicuous lack of sponsorship this year; what is normally the AT&T Austin Marathon was simply the Austin Marathon this year. C'mon big companies... get on it. Everyone knows we are in tough times, but I'm sure maybe just one of your underperforming executives can take a little lighter bonus so that thousands of distance athletes can get some nicer swag! Hahahahah

All in all, here was the weekend...
Saturday: 60 miles on the bike with ~3800ft of net elevation gain = 3122 calories
Sunday: 13.1 (more accurately 13.17) miles running = 1570 calories

All in all, time to get some pizza.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Running speed work = hungry.

So, here's last night's workout... T3 wednesday night track runs are one of my favorite workouts of the week, and are also by far the hardest of the week in terms of intensity.

Warm Up
Set 1 = 3min @ half marathon pace, 3min @ 10k pace, 3min @ 5k pace. rest 1:30 between each rep.
Set 2 = 2min @ 10k pace, 2min @ 5k pace, 2 min @ faster than 5k pace. rest 1:30 between each rep.
Set 3 = 1min @ 5k pace, 1min @ faster than 5k pace, 1 min all out.
Warm Down

Paces I used for the workout...
Half Marathon = 7:20min/mi
10k = 6:40min/mi
5k = 6:00min/mi
Faster than 5k = 5:35min/mi
All out = as fast as the legs would take me :) Managed to get under 5min/mi on this one... but man did it hurt.

I love track days. We worked it pretty darn hard last night.

More yoga for me today :)

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Yoga, yoga, and more yoga...

I've been on a massive yoga kick lately. Went to yoga class last week tuesday, sunday, and then again yesterday. It's a bit of a surprise to me how good it is for post-run recovery, even with it being a bit exerting. I was having some achilles issues with my right leg, went to a 60min yoga class, and bam! gone. The stretching didn't work nearly that well after the run. There's definiately something to this yoga stuff. Maybe it'll make me into the flexible gumby I aspire to be :)

One thing I find really interesting about yoga is the variety in methods of instruction, especially as it relates to the strength of attachment to eastern religion. Some seem to go pretty deep on the religion ties, where others seem to place less focus there and more on the movement and position. Have to say I have a strong preference for the movement/position focus... I find myself squarely in the Christian camp, but still can appreciate the origins and benefits of the practice. Ultimately I find a great deal more in common than different in their lines of thinking, but normally I'm not looking to the gym to be the place that religious instruction is given, ya know? :)

The fun thing is that now, I can do this...

... all sorts of craziness is coming in the future for me. Cirque d'Soleil here I come!

Monday, February 2, 2009

One month down, five (or so) to go...

I ran one of the more fun Austin races on January 25th... the 3M half marathon. It's a really fun course - there are long sustained sections of downhill running, which makes for a fast course. Downhill running is a pretty specific skill - it can be an easy way to get some free speed, but also can beat you up pretty good if you don't know how to do it efficiently. This is my second year running the event, and I made a very large improvement over last year's time as well as setting a new personal record for the half marathon distance. There were a bunch of T3ers out there to give it a go, and some very impressive performances! Thanks to all who came out to run and a special thank you to those who came out to cheer us on!

This past weekend was a tough one for training... Saturday's plan called for 50mi on the bike (mostly hills) followed directly by a 30min run, and Sunday called for a 15mi run. I just didn't feel all that good through the workouts, but I did get through them - Having gotten through them feels pretty great. Even when workouts don't go all that well, they still accomplish their purpose, and have the added benefit of building mental toughness as well. All considered, I'll take it.

I seriously need to start getting some yoga in - as I get more flexible I'm realizing there's some serious benefit there in terms of being comfortable on the bike, and that's clearly something I want. So, off to yoga classes more often for me starting this week.

Now, a completely unrelated topic - In helping my homie Chris work on his son's Pinewood Derby car this past week, I began to remember how much I enjoy woodworking... that's something I used to spend a great deal of time on before moving to Austin, and something I will certainly get back into when life settles a bit more and I have a more suitable place to do so.

A few pics just for fun...

Here's what the bottom of the car looked like after we'd made the cutout for the weight... most peeps who do the pinewood derby use additional weight to make their car go faster. To make it look nice, Chris wanted to hollow out a section and place the weight inside the car. Here's what it looked like before we filled it...

Note the two cavities in the car in the pic above - large and small. The intent of the smaller cavity was that if the car was over the max weight, he could just dig that weight out with a screwdriver prior to the race. Turns out we could have added even more weight and been legal to race :)

Here's a pic of the bottom of the car after adding the filler material, prior to sanding and painting...

The Pinewood Derby is a bunch of fun. For those of you who have never done the Boy Scouts thing, take a look at this page for information on the Pinewood Derby.

Hope all of you are well! Talk to you later!

Those who want to 'See Tom Tri' :)