Wednesday, December 31, 2008

CTS 731: The two-year run

HONOLULU -- Got up early and it wasn't raining up here for a change so I headed out down the hill.

Decided to take a short 3-mile loop -- Nuuanu-School-Liliha-Wyllie-Nuuanu. It was pretty nice out - a few walkers but no runners at all. I took to calling all dogs I saw "poi dogs" whether they were mutts or not.

I've found that during this current streak it's not so much the streak that matters but how active you are in a particular cycle. I've run more miles at times and less.

I like that a spur-of-the-moment 5K run when I was visiting my parents in September led to two more 5Ks, a 10K and a half-marathon. And a few hundred more training miles I wouldn't have run otherwise.

I'm happy to have ended the year being able to reach Hawaii landmarks in perfect running weather.

Who knows what the new year will bring? My immediate goals still include wanting to run a sub 54-minute 10K to qualify for the Peachtree 10K. Long outset goals could include running in the Chicago Marathon in October or the Honolulu Marathon in December with maybe the Las Vegas half-marathon in December.

But we'll see -- there's a lot of miles - and a very hot Atlanta summer - in between now and then.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

CTS 730: To Waikiki Niketown

HONOLULU -- It rains a lot where my grandmother's house is, so I wasn't sure when it would let up to let me run.

It started up raining right before I was going to go outside so instead I took a ride with my folks down Nuuanu to the shopping center where the Hungry Lion restaurant is.

But then it wasn't raining anymore. So I decided I would first go over to Long's Drugs at Vineyard and Pali Highway to get a poncho.

I did that and then decided I would continue on yesterday's quest to go to the Niketown in Waikiki. We saw it while driving to the wedding on Sunday. Monday I started out to go there but didn't have any gas in my legs and cut the run short.

But today it was fine. The directions were okay although there were some spots on Magellan that seemed a little seedy and didn't always have sidewalks.

I got down there in just under about 3.5 miles. It was pretty neat- there were Niketown Hawaii T-shirts and even finisher LSTs of the Honolulu Marathon. I looked around but decided not to get anything.

Coming back was a lot easier than getting there, since I knew where everything was. One thing that seemed neat about training in Honolulu is the close proximity of things -- I think you could plot a course where you'd always be near restrooms, water or food.

I came back and then went up School Street for a few blocks to my uncle's parents' shave ice store. The large shave ice is so big -- as big as a human head -- I walked about a quarter way up Nuuanu before I finished it!

Anyway, it made for a good reward to a pretty nice run.

Time: noon
Temp: ??
Gear: SST (MGM Grand), shorts, AP/D1.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

CTS 728: To Aloha Tower

HONOLULU -- It had been raining all day and I really wasn't sure when I would get to run, especially because we're limited today by my cousin's wedding, which is at 4:30 p.m.

Compounding the problem is that I accidentally left my running watch in Maui (my uncle found it and says he'll bring it to the wedding today) and my Garmin is out of batteries.

So I decided to go about it the old fashioned way, carrying my cell phone with a piece of paper and a pen and writing down when I start, when I stop, how long I have to wait at stoplights.

I headed down Nuuanu and just kept going. After a while I felt like I must be pretty close to the water, crossing through Chinatown. Eventually I found Aloha Tower and veered to it.

Coming back it was a little hilly but nothing really steep. Still, my calves were pretty tight like they didn't have much in them.

Two blocks away from my grandmother's house, it started to pour down rain. I neglected to put my Blackberry in a ziploc bag so I tried to shield it the best I could.

It got scary after I got home. It didn't want to turn on and for a few hours I didn't even have Internet access.

But all is well now.

Time: 11:30 a.m.
Temp: 65 degrees (?)
Gear: SST (Las Vegas), shorts, AP/D1.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

CTS 727: The backway

KULA, Hi. -- Didn't have much time this morning so I decided to do the 4-mile loop from the back way of Polipoli to the highway.

I usually don't like it because the first half mile is pretty much all uphill. But later it wasn't bad- a great view of the sea from the top of the road, elevation maybe 3,500 feet.

I consider myself a really great hill runner but still it was pretty humbling having my calves burn out at the top.

The highway was ok- saw a couple of runners going the other way and some bikers.

Will be very happy to be running at sea level in Honolulu.

Friday, December 26, 2008

CTS 726: Tranquility lane

KULA, Hi. -- There's something different about this run -- it's lush and green on either side of the road.

Decided to run directly from my grandparent's house to Holy Ghost Church in Kula. It worked out perfectly -- it's about 1.5 miles from the house to Rice Park, another 1.5 miles to the church, and then back.

I wanted to do 6 miles so it worked out.

Only thing was about after 4 miles I started to get tired and lose my form. I'm not sure if it is the 3,000-foot elevation here or the fact that I usually do not run very well the day after a flight.

Either way, I struggled through it. The weather was perfect and I regained my form on the highway on the way back, although I could feel it a little in my legs.

Looks like this trip will be without the GPS watch. It is totally dead and while I brought the charger, I left the docking cradle at home, making this just an expensive paperweight.

Time: 10:30 a.m.
Temp: 59 degrees
Gear: SST, shorts, AP/D1.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

CTS 725: A Christmas run

Because I'll be leaving around 4:15 a.m. to get to the airport and then I'll need the next 23 hours to get to Maui, my window was extremely short to get in a run and continue the streak.

Basically it was, run right after midnight or run at 4 a.m. when I got up.

I couldn't go to sleep because of the rainfall this evening, so I decided to get it out of the way.

With my AP/D1s packed away, I took out my old, battered AP/Ds. They weren't bad at all, I trudged around, and at one point, in a puddle.

The weather was nice, even though it was still lightly raining.

The streak is still alive. Maybe it can be the beginning of a new tradition?

Temp: 59 degrees (light rain)
Gear: windbreaker, SST, shorts, AP/D.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

CTS 723: Learning in the cold

Today I went out, and having learned from the day before, brought a lot less gear on my run.

It was 32 degrees but no, I didn't need a hat, gloves or windbreaker. There were times I wished I had more, but overall I was fine.

Time: 11:45 a.m.
Temp: 32 degrees
Gear: CFLST, SST (Gold Coast), running pants, AP/D1.

Monday, December 22, 2008

CTS 722: Out comes the Garmin

Broke out the Garmin 205 today for a dual-mission run: first, to scout out where Kevin Rathbun Steak was and then to proceed to the United Way building downtown to make a donation.

By .8 mile, I didn't need my hat and gloves and at times during the run I was wondering if I should have worn shorts instead of the running pants.

Early in the run, my shins were giving me trouble, mainly because of lack of a warm-up.

But on the way back, my speed was returning because I was fully warmed-up. Even was on a 7:34 pace on the way home. lol

Time: 1 p.m.
Temp: 26-30 degrees
Distance: 6.66 miles
Gear: CF windbreaker, CFLST, SST (Carolina), running pants, hat, gloves, AP/D1.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

CTS 721: The cold returns

After enjoying a week of nice, 60-degree weather, the cold has returned.

After procrastinating around noon, cat finally set out for Piedmont Park doing a short but sweet loop. It was nice to run in mid-40s weather, but I probably run better when it's 20 degrees warmer.

I liked the energy I had on the hills. It almost felt too warm for the CFLST, so I'll have to think about that. But other times I was happy to have the sleeves cover my hands.

Time: 12:50 p.m.
Temp: 44 degrees
Gear: CFLST (William's Run), SST (Thrashers green), shorts, AP/D1.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Why the streak is alive

Faulkner once was asked if he wrote every day or if he wrote when he was inspired and he said, I only write when I'm inspired but I'm inspired every day. -- Cormac McCarthy, in 2007 interview with Oprah

CTS 718: Strange weather

Today it was 68 degrees, which is a little strange for me at this time of year. Did a short run after a lot of procrastination and because I woke up later than usual.

Time: 12:45 p.m.
Gear: SST (Las Vegas), shorts, AP/D1.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

CTS 716: Another work trip

I really hated the idea of again running to work but I sold my very last pair of Falcons tickets.

First I had to run to the Post Office in the opposite direction to mail off a book I sold on (The Tipping Point, for more money than I bought it. A first.)

Then I came back and got the tickets and was off. The temperature was 66 degrees and all of the troubles I had with running I didn't have this time. I think the Post Office run was sufficient warm-up.

I got to work but was super-sweaty. It was warm but nearly the perfect weather for running.

Came back home. Finished strong.

Time: 1:15 p.m.
Gear: SST (Discwing, although maybe too thick for this kind of weather), shorts, AP/D1.

Monday, December 15, 2008

CTS 715: Back to work

Ran into work again, since I sold another pair of Atlanta Falcons tickets.

I almost didn't make it there, though, since my left shin muscle was acting up. I even cut back through The Carter Center parking lot but then doubled back on the PATH course and was fine.

I really don't get a good running rhythm and/or are properly warmed up until after 2.5 miles or so.

Time: 2 p.m.
Temp: 59 degrees
Gear: SST (Blue Chip), shorts, AP/D1.

Friday, December 12, 2008

CTS 713: A run with the Poker Peaker

LAS VEGAS -- Today I ran with Poker Peaker, another poker blogger and runner.

We started out right in front of the Imperial Palace, made our way over the overpass at Flamingo Road and then up the west side of the Strip to the overpass at MGM. Then we went down to Koval and came back on Harmon before leaving for our respective hotels.

Usually I don't run with people, but this was pretty enjoyable -- we talked about everything from running to work and climbing mountains. The weather was perfect.

Time: 9:30 a.m.
Temp: 50 degrees
Gear: LST (Ted's), shorts, AP/D1.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

CTS 712: Sunset on the Strip

LAS VEGAS -- With the uncertainty of whether I'd have to wait until 4 p.m. to check in to my hotel, I decided to grab a quick run right out of the airport.

Went over to Sunset Park where I remembered they had a nice red rock dirt path that is about a mile.

Was pretty nice. My left knee definitely seems a little weak -- not painful or limiting -- in some way.

Time: 11 a.m.
Temp: 61 degrees
Gear: SST (California), shorts, AP/D1.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Unleashing the D2s

Just broke out my third pair of Air Pegasus running shoes, to be labeled AP/D2, for the upcoming Vegas trip.

Normally I would wear around my old AP/D shoes but since I can't run in them anymore, I might as well break in a new pair.

Still bringing the AP/D1s to run in, since they have less than 200 miles on them right now.

CTS 710, The rain, a watch ordered

Coming off a cold, the last thing I wanted to do today was to run in the rain. Normally I wouldn't have minded it, as it reminded me of my Pacific Northwest days and the weather -- 62 degrees -- was the warmest it's been recently.

I trudged outside. My left knee felt a little funny, but I was able to accelerate on it ok without pain and I felt sluggish but it was enough for a short run.

Time: 12:30 p.m.
Temp: 62 degrees
Gear: Windbreaker, SST (Bridge-to-Bridge), shorts, hat, AP/D1.

Today, after e-mailing with Poker Peaker, who has a Garmin Forerunner 201 watch, I decided to get a GPS watch.

I ended up ordering the Garmin Forerunner 205, which is what my boss has.

My main "excuse" is that prior to The Weather Channel Atlanta Half Marathon, I would be able to guessimate pretty accurately my pace in training and would have no problem running faster in races.

But now I am wondering if my training pace is falling off too drastically and I need something to tell me how my training is in relation to pace. Keep in mind I really do not care too much about my training pace, as long as I am outside and am enjoying the run.

Free shipping was my other "excuse." Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

CTS 709: Flat tire

Ran today to drop off a book that I sold on at the Post Office and then decided to add a few more miles to it.

Into the first mile, I experienced the same kind of thing that I had during The Weather Channel Atlanta Half-Marathon during Thanksgiving: My left shin muscle didn't really want to be running - it didn't hurt but I could tell I wasn't going too fast.

My left leg didn't have the springiness that the right had. My legs for the most part were tired and I'm still coming over a cold I'm glad I completed the run, though.

The weather was really a gift for this time of year, and especially compared to other runs the last few days that included 32 degrees and 46 degrees yesterday.

So it kind of was a shame. But I'm glad I got the run in.

Time: 11:45 a.m.
Temp: 52 degrees
Gear: LST (Brookfield), shorts, AP/D1. (Although I probably could have gotten away with just a SST.

Friday, December 5, 2008

CTS 705: Laundry run

Basic run today on the PATH to Candler while I was doing laundry. Main thing to note is that hills that once intimidated me and I huffed up aren't a problem anymore.

Time: 11:45 a.m.
Temp: 46 degrees
Gear: CFLST, SST (Discwing), shorts, AP/D1.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

CTS 704: Birthday run

I had to get to work to prepare two more football tickets that I sold for shipping, so I decided I would just run there.

I was slightly hungover from celebrating my birthday last night into this morning, but it turned out it was one of my best and effortless runs. Maybe because I had carbed up! lol

There was a little bit of drizzle but it was fine. I got to work just as it was starting to get dark so I ran back along Highland Avenue instead of the PATH with all the rush hour traffic.

Time: 4:45 p.m.
Temp: 46 degrees
Gear: CFLST (Atlanta half-marathon), SST (Beltline), shorts, AP/D1.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Stone Mountain or bust, part 2 (Avondale Stn. to Farmers Market)

DECATUR, Ga. -- I decided to continue running on the Atlanta-Stone Mountain PATH with the intention of making Clarkston.

But I started out too late in the day and I drove around a while trying to find a place to park near Avondale Station. Possibly because of the station's proximity, all of the streets around it are marked with residents only parking signs.

So I went all the way back to the parking spaces on Howard near Carpe Diem.

The trail loops to follow the MARTA tracks and you go by abandoned houses. The isolated nature of this part of the trail made me not want to attempt to have to return when the sun was going down so I tried to connect with East Ponce de Leon and go to the Farmer's Market.

I got as far as North Clarendon and East Ponce and then doubled back on the side of the street about a half mile before I found the Farmer's Market.

For the last two legs of the Stone Mountain run, I'll probably park in Clarkston and make my way back to North Clarendon and then on another trip make my way to Stone Mountain.

Time: 3:30 p.m.
Temp: 57 degrees
Gear: LST (Ted's), shorts, AP/D1.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

CTS 702: Election runoff

Not sure why, but I got up really early and decided I would use that time to vote in the U.S. Senate runoff race.

Of course that meant chilly weather. I decided I would err on warmer clothes just in case there were lines (there weren't).

It was fine for the run. But I probably wouldn't need the gloves for anything longer.

Time: 7:30 a.m.
Temp: 34 degrees
Gear: CFLST, North Face thermal layer, North Face pants, hat, gloves, AP/D1.

Monday, December 1, 2008

CTS 701: Back to the dentist

Another 38 degree day, 4 mile round trip to pay a dentist bill. Wore CFLST, SST (Bally's), shorts. Was a little cold to begin with on my hands, but gradually warmed up.

I ran around noon, saw a few guys running, a little more bundled up up top than I was, but they were also wearing shorts.