Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Caught Up A Second Time; July 21, 2021


Wait, I'm still having troubles blogging.  Yes indeed.

And apparently walking or running too.

That's because I started to develop some significant pain in my left knee.  

I think it is largely walking a lot of miles on shoes whose tread had worn out on the fronts of the shoes - and in the effort to maintain speed, I fear that my "racewalking like" gait might even had hyperextended things.

I don't know.  I just know that it hurt and it forced me to take a break.

It was that Monday, the 5th, where I really started to feel things pretty bad.

And then after putting down 44.04 miles from July 10 to July 16, I was toast.

Plus I wanted to spend Saturday morning July 17 watching Waverly compete in the Camp Gladiator Games at Concordia Lutheran High School in Tomball.

She did great.  I was really impressed with her effort and fortitude.

It is tough watching your child complete in something that seemed more difficult to her than her running either of the two marathons that she did.

Nevertheless, I shut things down completely last Saturday.

And then I cycled for three days before getting back out and walking Tuesday night at a "just barely count it pace" of 15:55 - per the Strava app.

I will still log miles against the GVRAT, but my goal is not necessarily to finish it.

I rowed some today and felt nothing at all.  In fact, the 10 minutes went by pretty quick.  I was surprised.

I plan to walk again tonight and then I may run a race over the weekend.

I'm actually happy not having a plan at all.

Here's the last seven days' worth of activities:

July 15 (Thursday) - 5.16 miles walking in Hannover Forest subdivision (1:18:34) - 10 miles cycling on Air Assault bike (30:05) - 0.54 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 16 (Friday) - 4.98 miles walking along The Woodlands Waterway and Hughes Landing (1:19:34) - 1.32 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 17 (Saturday) - 2.2 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 18 (Sunday) - 10.9 miles cycling on Air Assault bike (33:33) - 0.73 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 19 (Monday) - 10.6 miles cycling on Air Assault bike (31:36) - 0.56 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 20 (Tuesday) - 3.69 miles walking along The Woodlands Waterway (58:22) - 14.7 miles cycling on Air Assault bike (43:41) - 0.61 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 21 (Wednesday) - 1,894 meters rowing (10:00) - 10.4 miles cycling on Air Assault bike (30:42)

Again, the "miles walking (Apple Health)" is just time on my feet where my phone is on my body in some way.

If you're reading, thanks.  I appreciate your time and interest.

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Getting Caught Up; July 14, 2021


Well, my vacation was altered by a dropped phone at the Hampton Inn in Lake Charles Friday night, July 2 and then Tropical Storm and/or Hurricane Elsa that was to make its way to Florida, stopping my run with Robert "Raven" Kraft.

Actually, what changed the course the most was the fact that I had to go to Baton Rouge to get my phone fixed on Sunday, July 4.  It got resolved, but I just decided to stay there Sunday night and begin to move west to my other planned location, San Antonio on Thursday and Friday, for a convention.

So if you see "miles walking (Apple Health)", that's just a result of me being moving with my phone less any time running or walking briskly while having the phone on my person.

It is what I call "Light Walking" to add into a total "Time on My Feet".

My last "reporting period", I had 167.10 miles running and walking and 36.53 miles "light walking" for 203.63 "miles on my feet" - a record.

July 2 (Friday) - 3.04 miles walking in Hannover Forest subdivision (45:15) - 1.46 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 3 (Saturday) - 4 miles at LAR's 4 on the Fourth, Lake Charles, LA (40:50.98) - 0.82 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 4 (Sunday) - 3.1 miles at The SHARK Run 5K, Orange Beach, AL (31:17.09) - 0.89 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 5 (Monday) - 4.42 miles in three Louisiana cities (46:53) - 1.51 miles walking in one Louisiana city (22:23) - 1.77 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 6 (Tuesday) - 3.6 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 7 (Wednesday) - 7 miles walking along or near The Woodlands Waterway (1:45:27) - 0.5 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 8 (Thursday) - 2.9 miles walking (Apple Health)

July 9 (Friday) - 1.5 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 10 (Saturday) - 5.91 and 5.00 miles walking along The Woodlands Waterway (1:26:10 and 1:15:19) - 0.59 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 11 (Sunday) - 5.18 miles walking along The Woodlands Waterway (1:16:22) - 1.32 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 12 (Monday) - 6.1 miles walking along The Woodlands Waterway (1:31:05) - 0.6 miles walking (Apple Health)
July 13 (Tuesday) - 2.01 mile walking in Hannover Forest subdivision (29:55) plus 4.09 miles walking along The Woodlands Waterway (1:01:24) - 10.2 miles of cycling on Air Assault bike (30:33) - 0.6 miles walking (Apple Health)

So these were my activities to get things caught up.

I had three zero running or walking days, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.

It puts a little bit of pressure on me for the GVRAT, but I'll figure it out.

Through July 13, 2021, there had been 74 days for 380.171 miles running and walking, an average of 5.14 per day.

There's 49 days left and 262.729 miles to go for an average of 5.36 miles per day.

A little daunting, but I've come this far as long as my left knee doesn't stop me.

Sunday, July 4, 2021

My Fourth of July Races (2003-2021)


2003 - Run Wild 5K (Houston, TX)
2004 - Run Wild 5K (Houston, TX)
2005 - Stu's Country Mile 5K (Centerville, TX)
2006 - Didn't race.
2007 - Lander Half Marathon (Lander, WY)
2008 - Stu's Country Mile 5K (Centerville, TX)
2009 - East Montgomery County YMCA Fourth of July 5K (Roman Forest, TX)
2010 - TWRC Sunday Night 5K (The Woodlands, TX)*
2011 - Baytown Bud Heat Wave 5M (Baytown, TX)+
2012 - Baytown Bud Heat Wave 5M (Baytown, TX)+
2013 - Baytown Bud Heat Wave 5M (Baytown, TX)+
2014 - Baytown Bud Heat Wave 5M (Baytown, TX)+
2015 - Baytown Bud Heat Wave 5M (Baytown, TX)+
2016 - Baytown Bud Heat Wave 5M (Baytown, TX)+
2017 - Baytown Bud Heat Wave 5M (Baytown, TX)+
2018 - Old Jo's Firecracker 5K (Saint Jo, TX)
2019 - 50th anniversary West Texas Running Club Firecracker 10K (Brownfield, TX)
2020 - Firecracker 5K (Mexia, TX)
2021 - The SHARK Run 5K (Orange Beach, AL)

*Volunteer +Race Announcer

Friday, July 2, 2021

Spring Creek Greenway Trail Thursday; July 2, 2021


Friday morning here and on the cusp of vacation that is going to be "make it up as I go".

I have to be in San Antonio on Thursday and Friday.

I have signed up for races in Lake Charles (Saturday), Orange Beach, Alabama (Sunday) and Orlando (Monday).

I cancelled my hotel in Orlando for Sunday night.

I think I will wait and see how things are on Sunday morning after I finish the 5K in Alabama and then decide from there.

My goal for the second half of the Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee is to run more miles than I walk.  We'll see.

Tried to start that late Thursday afternoon when I went to Dennis Johnston Park to run on the Spring Creek Greenway Trail.

While it was hot (88-89) and humid (so much so that steam was rising off the trail as it had rained recently before), my challenges were two-fold:  1.) trying to maintain a 5K pace of like 9:45 in those conditions (impossible) and 2.) trying to get my legs used to running more than brisk/power walking (for a workout).

I covered 4.48 miles in 50:19.12 - 24:32.35 out to the mile 11.0 marker and 25:46.77 back.

And after I was done, I was wiped out.

Had dinner at Cotton Patch Cafe afterwards, but fell asleep soon after once I got home.

Could have been the comfort food, but think it was more the draining conditions.

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (30) GVRAT miles = 154.25
July (1) GVRAT miles = 4.48
Total GVRAT miles - 328.811
Ahead of pace at 62 days = 315.60 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Slightly ahead of pace at 62 days = 326.72 based on 642.9 miles 

Have a great Friday!

Thursday, July 1, 2021

Wednesday Work Done; July 1, 2021


Blogging here on Thursday afternoon about Wednesday's efforts.

During the morning, I pushed away from the desk twice to record 1.01 miles in 15:13 and 15:06, respectively.  Both of these were before noon.

I then posted 11.3 miles on my Air Assault bike in 33:25 before I eventually ended up, after getting a bite to eat at Mod Pizza, up on The Woodlands Waterway.

I needed to get a couple of miles to put more than the halfway point of the GVRAT so I got four miles exactly in 1:00:12.

Felt like I might have been moving a little bit quicker, but it wasn't to be.

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (30) GVRAT miles = 154.25
Total GVRAT miles - 324.331
Ahead of pace at 61 days = 310.15 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Slightly ahead of pace at 61 days = 321.15 based on 642.9 miles 

Based on the development of Tropical Storm (and could be Hurricane) Elsa and its making its way to Florida on Monday at some point, I will not be running the 5K in the Orlando area that I've already paid for as well as running eight miles with Robert "Raven" Kraft.

I went ahead and cancelled by hotel for Maitland, Florida, near the race site, for Sunday night.

Therefore, I'll probably head back west after running the 5K in Orange Beach, Alabama on Sunday morning.

Changes.  They're inevitable.

Congratulations today to Jerritt Park's son, Brayden, for finishing second in the 3,000 meters at the AAU Region 17 National Qualifier in Webster earlier this morning, finishing in 11:34.83.  

He will advance to the National Junior Olympics meet to be held in Humble on August 2 - 7, 2021.  

Brayden will also compete in the 1,500 meters on Saturday.  He is the fastest qualifier of the field that is currently registered.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Heading into Vacation; June 29, 2021


Still tracking towards vacation.  Just hope that I make the most of, but sure wish there was somebody to enjoy it with.  Oh well.

Two more nights on the Waterway for my miles.

Monday evening, I stayed pretty contained on The Waterway, but tonight I went over and back the bridge near North Shore Park twice as well as an out and back to Hughes Landing.

6.06 and 6.24 miles each of the last two.

I was telling my daughter, Waverly, this evening that I'm not even sure what the impetus was for me to sign up for the Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee this year.  

I have one theory, but I'm not sure how valid that it really was.

As long as I don't run into an injury, I'm still going strong and should be able to complete the mileage by the end of August.

Here's how things long right now:

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (29) GVRAT miles = 148.23
Total GVRAT miles - 318.311
Ahead of pace at 60 days = 305.41 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Barely ahead of pace at 60 days = 316.18 based on 642.9 miles 

Again, Monday afternoon, I hope to be on South Miami Beach to run eight miles with Robert "Raven" Kraft.

Everybody that finishes the eight miles gets a nickname.  I have hope for a certain one.  We'll see.

Robert said in a Facebook comment on a post from Monday that he's given out 3,443 to date.

Could be one of the craziest things that I've ever done other than ... 1.) three races in a day, 2.) three races in three states in three days (AR, LA, TX) and who knows what else.

Sunday, June 27, 2021

On-Call Weekend; June 27, 2021


So I haven't blogged in a couple of days now.  

Let it be known that I dislike the weekends I have to take call for work.  I feel so grounded.

Friday evening, I had to stay close here to the house.  

I started to get out and walk and nature called twice.  

Therefore, my effort for the evening was broken into three separate times.

1.59 miles in 24:14.
1.87 miles in 28:06.
2.00 miles in 30:16.

A total of 5.46 miles in an hour, 22 minutes and 36 seconds.

Saturday, I tempted fate and went to go do Run The Woodlands 5K at Barbara Bush Elementary.

I was able to make it to the race site too far in advance really, but the race got started on time at 8 a.m., I got the race in and then headed back.

Always good to see Vincent Attanucci and Ken JohnsonDavid Keithley from the Seven Hills Running Club was also there and looked to have run pretty well.

First mile was pretty normal, 9:44.36, and then it went downhill from there.

I ran 22:06.06 in the remaining 2.1 miles for a total time of 31:50.42.

Sure, it was humid, but I felt like I was moving a little bit better than what the time reflected.

I stopped and got breakfast at Whataburger before I made it home and then once I did get back here, I watched the online stream of Lauren Stroud competing at DekaFit Jacksonville.  Fascinating to see.

Lauren is such a class act.  Great to see her perform on that level playing field and have fun doing it.

Saturday evening, I thought about getting back out and putting some more feet to the pavement, knowing I need 5.25 a day, but decided not to.

Instead, I rode 10.4 miles on the Air Assault bike in 30 minutes, 49 seconds.

And then, this afternoon, I went out again in my subdivision to get some miles in and rain took over my plans.

I got 3.0 miles even on the Strava app in 43:52, but I had to get at least another 0.6 miles to run home for a total time of 51:43.60 on my watch.

I will go with that on my mileage for #GVRAT.

If I don't add any more today, this is where I stand.

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (27) GVRAT miles = 135.93
Total GVRAT miles - 306.011
Ahead of pace at 58 days = 295.23 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Barely ahead of pace at 58 days = 305.64 based on 642.9 miles 

All good.  I'm happy.  It is just for me and nobody else.  And am getting excited about vacation.

Friday, June 25, 2021

Thursday Moves on The Waterway; June 24, 2021


Hit the Woodlands Waterway again Thursday night as it will become off-limits for a couple of days while I'm on call.  Will be able to get back out there on Monday evening.

Basically, I go there so I can at least see people while I'm walking.

It was good to see Dan Jordan and Susan Rouse and I think it was Jim and Susan Griffis with them, but am not totally sure as it was just past turning dark.  

I saw some other folks shortly after I got started, but I was down on the sidewalk and they were up on the Trolley pathway.  Probably just as good that they didn't see me.  Three of the four I knew - and they're all training for Ironman Texas - and have no issue with, but it was just better nothing was said.

Hadn't had a good breakfast in awhile so I went to Denny's in Shenandoah before hand.

I've been moving through this book that Waverly got me for Father's Day called The Listening Road:  One Man's Ride Across America To Star Conversations About God.

Easy, yet fascinating read.  Basically a Dallas-area pastor put together a small team of people to ride their bikes from coast-to-coast to have engaging conversations about God despite the divisiveness of our nation today.

Parked my car again near the Riva Row Boat House primarily because it gives me some distance options, and I knew that early on I would have to hit the restroom - which I did less than a mile and a half in.

Basically, I walked 4.33 miles in 1:03:32 for a pace of 14:40 per mile.  

I felt like I was moving at a pretty brisk pace.

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (24) GVRAT miles = 123.77
Total GVRAT miles - 293.851
Ahead of pace at 55 days = 279.96 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Slightly ahead of pace at 55 days = 289.83 based on 642.9 miles 

As of almost 12 noon on Friday, June 25, 2021, I'm in 2,262nd place among 5,198 participants.  :-)

I ended my May 25 to June 24 reporting period with 167.10 miles, 41.02 running and the rest walking to break a sweat.

Pretty happy about that.  Also 139.5 miles on the bike.  Really need to increase that.  It is so easy to do, plus I get to read a lot.

I signed up for my races on Saturday (Lake Charles, Louisiana), Sunday (Orange Beach, Alabama) and Monday (Orlando, Florida).

I'm looking forward to meeting my friends Keith and Rebecca Bell Saturday evening in Fairhope, Alabama for dinner.  

It was also really great yesterday to get an unsolicited e-mail, just checking in on me, from TAPPS Executive Director Bryan Bunselmeyer.  

Thankful that God keeps putting people in my path to remind me that my most recent challenge isn't how everybody sees or deals with me.  Pretty thankful for that.  Actually, very thankful.

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Wednesday Miles; June 23, 2021


Twice today I decided to push away from my work desk and go walk a mile in the subdivision I live in.

That got me 2.01 miles, right at 15 minutes per mile.  

It was hot out, especially the second mile, which came at around 4:15 p.m.

I then went to The Woodlands Waterway at around 7'ish and added another 3.91 miles in 56:32.  

I wasn't going to do the four-mile route that I always used to do because it would force me to cross Lake Woodlands and slow me down a little.

Plus, with all that's happened since last Thanksgiving, the spot by Fleet Feet is nothing but a bad memory anymore.

So I either go over the bridge and back to and from North Shore Park or I walk around to Hughes Landing, but never get into that intersection that has Fleet Feet, Starbucks, etc.  

Again, a few bad triggers.

I went basically to the intersection - where The Waterway finishes by Whole Foods - then turned around and came back.

On the way out there, and as I approached where the finish line for The Woodlands Marathon is, I saw a gait that I clearly recognized.  

It was Waverly walking towards me.

She was just out taking a more leisurely stroll.  I would have walked with her, but we had different missions tonight -- and that's perfectly fine.

Here's where my numbers are for the Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee:

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (23) GVRAT miles = 119.44
Total GVRAT miles - 289.521
Ahead of pace at 54 days = 274.87 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Slightly ahead of pace at 54 days = 284.56 based on 642.9 miles 

My 25th to 24th reporting period closes tomorrow.  I right now, since the 25th of May, have run 41.02 miles and brisk walked another 121.75 for 162.77 miles total.

It broke my record from the previous reporting period of 147.11.

Add in another 35 miles of light walking, I'll have over 200 miles on my feet -- also a new high.

I didn't cycle as much as I wanted.  Unless I hop on the bike tomorrow, I will have 122.70, but my high is 173.90.

However, I rowed a record 23,383 meters, but I could have done a lot more.

Friday, though, is the start of a new reporting period.

I have a spreadsheet that I developed to kind of motivate me a little bit.  Helps me keep things in perspective I suppose.

Just trying to be happy, even though there are some things that I'm a little sad about right now.

If you're reading and you communicate regularly with me, thank you.  

I can't tell you how much I appreciate it.  People think I have it all put together.  

I pretty much do, but it isn't all necessarily a bed of roses either. 

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Tuesday on the Waterway; June 22, 2021


5.99 miles.

No, I didn't go just a little farther to get to six miles even.

I was done.  Simple as that.

Interesting that the Strava app said I went slower tonight, but still just under 15 minutes a mile, than on late Sunday morning and Monday evening.

Actually felt pretty good.  Covered it in 1:28:12.

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (22) GVRAT miles = 113.52
Total GVRAT miles - 283.601
Ahead of pace at 53 days = 269.78 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Slightly ahead of pace at 53 days = 279.29 based on 642.9 miles 

Need to start dialing in on my vacation calendar.  Here's the tentative calendar:

Friday, July 2:  Pick up rental car and drive to Lake Charles, Louisiana.

Saturday, July 3:  LAR's 4 for the Fourth, Lake Charles, Louisiana.
Drive to Fairhope and Mobile Bay, Alabama.
Stop at Buc-ee's in Robertsdale, Alabama.

Sunday, July 4:  The Shark Run 5K, Orange Beach, Alabama.
Drive to Orlando, Florida.

Monday, July 5:  AdventHealth Watermelon 5K, Winter Park, Florida
Drive to Miami, Florida.
Run 8 miles with Robert "Raven" Kraft at South Miami Beach, Florida
Begin to drive north.

Tuesday, July 6:  Visit Buc-ee's at Daytona Beach and San Augustine, Florida
Possibly Charlotte at Jacksonville minor league baseball game.

Wednesday, July 7:  Drive back to Texas.

Thursday, July 8:  TAPPSCON, San Antonio, Texas.
Friday, July 9:  TAPPSCON, San Antonio, Texas.

Saturday, July 10:  Toughest 10K in Texas, Lampasas, Texas

Sunday, July 11:  XTERRA Magnolia Hill Trail Run, Navasota, Texas

Monday on The Waterway; June 21, 2021


After work Monday evening I went and got in my brisk walk along The Woodlands Waterway.

With rain threatening, I parked near the Riva Row Boat House, in the middle of the Waterway, in case I needed to bail fairly quick.

I carried one of my lightweight The Woodlands Marathon jackets with me in case it rained, but it never did.

I was aiming for an hour and a half, which should have given me six miles, but the where I walked and where I was as I got close to returning to my car, I stopped a bit short of that.

But not by too much.

I covered 5.86 miles in 1:22:33.  It moves me to the following numbers for the last two months:

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (21) GVRAT miles = 107.53
Total GVRAT miles - 277.611
Ahead of pace at 52 days = 264.69 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Slightly ahead of pace at 52 days = 274.02 based on 642.9 miles 

Seventy (70) days to go and I need to continue to put a few miles in the bank, but am happy with the progress.

I'm sure there's a few people out there who don't think I can do it, but they can go fly a kite.

Great to see the progress of our friend Curtis Barton of The Woodlands and the Seven Hills Running Club.

He just passed the five-day mark of the Heart of the South road race, a 322-mile journey from Gaffney, South Carolina to Castle Rock, Georgia, at 314 miles with another 18 to go to finish.

Overnight, he moved up from fourth to second place.

He's going to have some stories to tell, for sure, when he gets back.

Well done, Curtis.

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Little Longer On The Waterway; June 20, 2021


I've alluded to having a long distance goal before the end of 2021, but I'm not willing to disclose exactly what it is yet.  (And will never discuss the motivation.)

However, it is incumbent upon me to get an increasing amount of time on my feet each week.

Last Sunday, I wanted to go two hours, but lasted just under 1:47.  1:46:59, to be exact, for 7.33 miles according to the Strava app.

Today, my goal was two hours and 15 minutes on my feet - and to do so in the heat, even though my race might not be.

I'm still out of pocket regarding my church attendance, especially without a church home.  

It is something that I need to work on more.

I'm thankful to God for giving me an avenue, this year's Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee, to try and focus on something to maintain and improve my health.  

Just need to get the quality of what I eat in line.

However, I did try on my green "L" polo shirt and it is at a point where I'm able to wear it again.

Therefore, I'm back to where I had been about two years ago.  I had added a little weight after the initial three months of the pandemic, but after 271 miles in May and so far in June things are looking better.

Now, if my speed would come more into line, that would be amazing.

I started from Town Green Park at around 10:30 a.m. this morning and put 8.73 miles down in 2:06:24. 

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (20) GVRAT miles = 101.67
Total GVRAT miles - 271.751
Ahead of pace at 51 days = 259.60 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Right on pace at 51 days = 268.75 based on 642.9 miles 

I ended up going all the way over the bridge and into North Shore Park and back, over to Hughes Landing and then over and back the bridge a second time before returning to The Waterway.

Got real close to my 2:15 goal, but once I got close to where I had parked my car -- across from the Riva Row Boat House -- I wasn't going to go and do an eight-minute out and back to get there.

I was happy to make the progress that I did today.

Pretty much enjoyed my Father's Day today.  

Took my parents out to eat last night to the Cheesecake Factory.  They wanted to go somewhere different than the Olive Garden.  Trust me that I was OK with that!

Had breakfast this morning - before going out to walk - and continue to make headway in the latest book that I've been reading, "Two Hours:  The Quest to Run the Impossible Marathon."

After returning home from walking - and gathering some information for tomorrow's LSCSN (Lone Star Christian Sports Network) News and Notes, I got cleaned up and went to Star Cinema Grill in Springwoods Village for my 52nd movie of the year, "Peter Rabbit 2 The Runaway."  

It was good.  Felt like a little bit of a kid again.  No harm in that, right?

Worked on a few more things - including finishing up my 30th book of the year, then Waverly and I went to Woodson's Local Tap + Kitchen just off of the Grand Parkway near the new Regal Benders Landing theater.

Great meal and then she gave me a card, with a gift certificate to Fleet Feet and a new book, "The Listening Road:  One Man's Ride Across America To Start Conversations About God".  

Have already worked through the first 32 pages and it's pretty good.

Have a great Monday if you're reading.

Saturday, June 19, 2021

Stockdale Watermelon Crawl 5K; June 19, 2021


This morning, I went to Stockdale in Wilson County for the Watermelon Crawl 5K.  It would prove to be my 27th race of the year and the 16th of those that are new races to me.

Some other statistics included the following:

95th county to run a race in in Texas.
188th city, town or census-designated place to run a race in in Texas.
341st city, town or census-designated place to run a mile or more in in Texas.
373rd city, town or census-designated place to run a race in in North America.

I went to bed a little early - at about 10 p.m., but I started to become restless around 2 a.m.  I actually didn't have an alarm set as I didn't pre-register.

I also had a couple of options, if I decided not to make that drive.  (One was the Holland Corn Festival 5K as well as the Seven Hills Running Club monthly club 5K.)

I figured that I would need to leave by 3:30 a.m. to make it there by 7 a.m. or so for an on-time start at 8 a.m.

Thing is:  Working from home 40-plus hours a week, I have to 1.) get out of the house and, often, 2.) roam.

Stopped at Buc-ee's in Katy for gas as well as at the one in Luling and made it into town at about 7:15 a.m.

Got parked, went and registered ($25 in cash), got my bib and then did a warm-up mile in 10:12.

Watched the kids start and finish their mile run and then gathered at the start.  I had seen a young man wearing an "SFA cross country" shirt and I asked him if he had run for the Lumberjacks and he said that he had.

I mentioned about knowing Lauren Stroud and he said his name was Jonas Rodriguez and that they had been teammates.  We chatted about her until the race started from Bryce Field and that he was the cross country coach at nearby Floresville High School.

In the park, we did a loop that had a shortened "S" in the northeast corner of the oval and then we passed back by the start and headed straight to a road that led us to three straight lefts, then a right and out to a turnaround and back in to the finish.

Between the last left and before the only right on the way out, I saw Jonas, cheered him on (as he had two high school kids that he was racing in a pack against) and because of that, as I often pick up my pace, I needed to back off a little when I made the right-hand turn.

All in all, I ran the distance in 30:03.39 and ran the whole way with the exception of that one time, having found a good steady pace for once.

The temperature was 71 before the start and 75 after I finished and, of course, the humidity was crazy.

I saw that Jonas had a GPS device on his wrist and he said that he had 3.08 miles on there.  There's a way that they could make it right on (looking at the map), but that's pretty close for a small-town race.

Haven't seen the results posted online yet, but it seemed like - to me - that they had a pretty good turnout.

I'll be down next week as I'm on call for worst.  At best, I might be able to make it to Run The Woodlands 5K at Barbara Bush Elementary.  At worst, it will be miles in my neighborhood regardless.

The following two weekends will be the bookends of vacation and I have plans for races in LA (4-miler), AL (5K), FL (5K), eight miles with Robert "The Raven" Kraft and then maybe the Toughest 10K in Texas in Lampsasas and one of the trail races at Navasota the following day.

Looking forward to it.

Have a great rest of your weekend.

Friday, June 18, 2021

Friday Night Along The Waterway; June 18, 2021


I used to have a secret Facebook group that I would post my workout(s) to keep me accountable to me - and to others - to do something, but I learned over time that not all secret Facebook groups are necessarily all that good.

One of the reasons why they're secret is - ah - there might be some things you might not want to get out -- or to have seen.  Well, invariably they do.

A large part of the reason why I basically shut mine down - not that I had anything to hide, but rather so I could force myself to get back to blogging again.  And be public about it, no matter how boring.

Even though I do like to tell a story or two.

What I didn't know is that I was one of the reasons (Katy Lampson being the other) why Huntsville's Ken Johnson has been blogging about the same number of days that he's run since 2008.

And when I saw him last night at the Millican Summer Series 5K Race No. 2, he's been wondering why I haven't been blogging lately - and that he's been checking every day.

Well, Ken, here's my note of walking 6.14 miles along The Woodlands Waterway in about an hour and 30 minutes.

Why don't I know for sure?

I hadn't wiped my time from last night's race off my watch on my wrist so I was going to rely on the Strava app, which I've been using when I don't do some of my standard routes.

The only problem is that I didn't get it started right after I stopped and chatted with Susan Rouse near the Riva Row Boathouse about 1.2 miles into tonight's effort.

So I'm taking credit for the 6.14 miles that I did on Wednesday night - also in the heat - and just marked it down at an hour and 30 minutes (Wednesday's was 1:28, even though I thought I might have been clipping things off a little faster this evening).

Over the years, when I started blogging even before what Ken saw to get started, I would always report on who I saw while I was out there.

After I crossed the foot bridge near going into East Shore to come back towards Interstate 45, I hear somebody hollering from one of the trolley buses.  Immediately, I thought to myself, "Who can that be?"

Jimmy Baker.  I knew he drove school buses for one of the districts after he retired, but I had never seen him on one of the Trolley buses -- and I'm out on The Waterway a lot.

He asked what I was doing and I replied, "Taking care of myself."  In more ways than one, physically and mentally, and sometimes spiritually too.

So where do I stand in the Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee?

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (18) GVRAT miles = 88.84
Total GVRAT miles - 258.921
Ahead of pace at 49 days = 249.42 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Right on pace at 49 days = 258.21 based on 642.9 miles

The breakdown?
Run: 24 entries (last on Thursday June 17, 2021) — 83.98 miles — 0ft (0.0m) — Time: 15:05:33
Walk: 42 entries (last on Friday June 18, 2021) — 174.941 miles — 0ft (0.0m) — Time: 43:54:45

If you had told me at any time in my life that I'd have this kind of mileage without running five marathons in a month, which I've done before, I'd say you were half crazy, even though this is really only about 35 miles per week.

After finishing 54 marathons, a 50K and a 50-miler, and making a couple of attempts at a 100-miler, honestly, I don't care.  I'm happy just doing what it is that I do.

If you're heading out to Katy tomorrow for the No Label Brewing First Street 5K, this year will be the first that I won't be announcing it.  

And, actually, it's OK, because basically I don't know that I wanted to. 

However, I was a little bummed that I didn't hear from the race director at all, especially after doing races for them for so many years.

Like a lot of other things in life, a lack of communicating - at all - or in a timely fashion creates a lot feelings that really don't ever have a place to have even been created.


Friday, June 4, 2021

Thursday Workouts; June 3, 2021


Another brief report because who wants to read boring workout stuff!

Congratulations to Ken Johnson for gutting out the Millican Summer Series Race 1 in College Station yesterday evening.

He noted on his blog, "Very technical course.  Up and down, lots of roots, all very slippery mud and water everywhere.  There was 30 to 40 times we had to go through water over the ankles, sometimes up close to the knees.  I fell several times and was a muddy mess by the time I finished."

So yesterday in trying to build a better me, I accomplished the following:
  • 90-second plank
  • 40 situps
  • 2,852 meters rowing over 15 minutes
  • 10.5 miles cycling on the Air Assault bike covering 31:26.
  • 4 miles brisk walking along The Woodlands Waterway in 1:00:54.54 (31:31.22 out and 29:23.32 back).
This weekend, it looks like I'm heading to the Zebra Dash 5K in Grandview Saturday morning and the 41st annual Windthorst Dairy Derby 5K on Sunday morning, just south of Wichita Falls.

Have already booked a hotel in Decatur for Saturday night and am planning on seeing an Indoor Football League game in Frisco Saturday night.  We'll see.  It is all always pretty fluid for me.

And to get Friday started, I put in exactly 10 miles on the Air Assault bike in 30 minutes.  Those aren't accounted for in the totals below.

May (31) GVRAT miles = 170.081
June (3) GVRAT miles = 11
Total GVRAT miles - 181.081
Ahead of pace at 34 days = 173.07 based on 621 miles (6.2 miles = 10K; 1000K)
Barely ahead of pace at 34 days = 179.17 based on 642.9 miles

And ...

May 25 - June 3 (10 days)
19.25 miles running - 35.08 miles walking = 54.33 miles combined + 15.16 miles light walking = 69.49 miles on foot.  71.1 miles cycling.  13,377 meters rowing.  4:15 plank (3).  100 situps (3).
January 1 - May 24 (144 days)
217.86 miles running - 220.5 miles walking = 438.36 miles combined + 170.15 miles light walking = 608.51 miles on foot.  473.47 miles cycling.  10,930 meters rowing.