Thursday, July 31, 2014

OFFICIAL: Crawlin Crab Half Marathon

It is official.  I made it legit yesterday.  I signed up for the Crawlin Crab Half Marathon in Hampton.  It will be my first half marathon.  I am very excited and also scared shit-less.  I really shouldn't be because I have been increasing my mileage successfully and have hit 8 miles this past weekend and also PR'ed my 5K on Tuesday.  It's funny that fifteen dollars of savings was the reason for me to sign up but I also wanted to sign up because they say once you sign up that forces you to commit to your goal.

My goal is 12 minute miles or a 2 hour 42 minute race.  I have been running faster than that on average but I know 13 miles is much longer.  My training program is in the "intermediate" model instead of the beginner model.  I didn't want to do the beginner because I knew I wanted to get my body strong enough to handle the race.  I don't want to feel weak by mile ten.  I want to feel strong the whole race and enjoy it.  I have had friends that didn't train enough for whatever reasons and were miserable.  I want the exact opposite.  I am not doing this as an extreme goal.  I am doing this to be healthy.

The good thing is this.  I will have my wonderful wife there to support me and my kids.  I will probably also have my mom in town too.  My Aunt and two cousins are also running, which will be great.  They are all skinny fellas and probably be drunk by the time I am done but whatever.  My one cousin has done basically every hardcore running event you can think of including ultra marathons.  But I am excited that my aunt and cousins decided to pick their fall half marathon to co-exist with my first half.  its pretty cool to have some family supporting your goals.

Right now I am basically at 70 pounds weight loss.  I would like to be at 80 for the race.  Very do-able but just need to keep on task.  My running schedule is changing a bit right now because Lori went back to work today for the first time since maternity leave.  But i will work around our schedules and the babies.  I can always run at night around the lake.

Good thing is I have some good races before my half.  I plan on running the 9.11 Memorial run at the Dismal Swamp park (9.11 miles).  It's a few weeks before the race.  I also plan on running the Neptune's 8K the weekend before.  It will be perfect for the week before race.

Long term goal: Run the Shamrock Half and 8k AKA the Dolphin Challenge next year and god willing (aka body willing) the DETROIT FREE PRESS MARATHON.  If I am going to run a marathon, it's got be my hometown marathon.  I ran the relay once and loved it.  I am also hoping to have friends run a relay team with me to keep me going.  Hopefully, if I do it, I can raise a few bucks for a charity of some sorts.  So there you have it.  I put it on paper.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Amping up the distance

Man, Vacation felt so long ago.  I got home Saturday, it's Monday.  Vacation was great.  It didn't move too fast.  it was mostly relaxing and went by slowly which was great.  Vacation is never long enough though.  But it was a great week off of work and normal day to day stuff.  Now we are back to the grind.  Our family starts a new chapter this week as Lori goes back to work on Thursday.  She has had twelve weeks off spending it with Avery.  It will be a huge adjustment for us all as we will now being be both working full time with two kids.  Hopefully, her mom can handle taking care of Avery.

Yesterday I ran my longest run ever.  I an 8 miles.  It wasn't terrible.  I was running a new route that I don't know very well and missed my turn and went too far.  I had to have Lori pick me up 2 miles from home.  But I wasn't going to run too long.  I am going to stick to my running plan.  It is really intimidating.  I have 7 more long runs of 9 miles or more.  I's funny how when i ran my 7.2 mile long run, I felt amazing after.  Yesterday, I felt like I got beat up.  I think i's mostly because I was on vacation and I was very active.  I destroyed my activity points record for Weight Watchers.We walked everywhere and I did run my scheduled runs.  Which is good but it is also a lot to do while on vacation (It was basically my second highest weekly total of mileage EVER).  My legs seemed pretty tired this morning.  I need to make sure I stretch out good this evening.

The run itself went great other than the missed turn.  It really made me feel that this Half marathon dream can actually happen.  It's exciting to know my body can handle the mileage.  I don't want to sign up and fail.  I don't care what anybody else thinks but for myself, I want to do this.  Next Sunday I have a planned 9 mile run.  I am planning to run to our friends house and cannonball into their pool.  Their house is exactly 9 miles away.  I do have to cross the Pungo Ferry Bridge, which is the only steep incline in our area and is also sketchy because the speed limit is 55.  But anyways, I am excited for that run.  Should test my limits and help me reach my goals.

Right now I am sitting in my office dreaming of siting in he pool with my tube, my wife, and margarita.  I purely enjoyed flip flopping between the hot tub and pool last week.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Vacation 2014

My expectations for my vacation were much higher than I should of had them for my diet.  I can't control everything.  Can't control everyone wanting to go get ice cream or have a drink. I also can't not enjoy myself.  Sorry for the double negative but it is what it is.  After a day I realized a few things. First off the weekly points are there for a reason.  Use them.  Especially on vacation.  Go get ice cream with your family.  If you can, find a healthier version or smaller portion.  Second, exercise.  Don't be lazy.  Go for a walk.  Don't change up your routine.  It's actually really enjoyable seeing the area you are vacationing in a different method.  Just enjoy yourself.  Don't make yourself excluded from the family.  Your routines should be assisting you anyways.  My daily habits are there.  It was the extra drink and ice cream with the family that made things out of normal.

My positives were this. I ran 17.5 miles.  I also earned 134 activity points.  More than I ever had.  Actually more than 36 than my max.  That's more than two days worth of points for me and I am a large man.  My training for my running went great.  ran a shorter long run but that is expected because it was part of my schedule.  But I actually ran more times than I expected. I was pretty happy with that.  Overall, I don't care how I weigh in the next week after I get back.  If I break even, so be it.  If I gain, so be it.  I was active and healthy.  I ate healthy foods and didn't break my system.  It helped that my wife supports me and we planned pretty well.  We scheduled good meals.  The only problems were my mom buying a bunch of junk for the condo.  Clearly I got really fat growing up.  No excuses though.

Anyways, I did go.  I have a scheduled run of 8 miles on Sunday.  I look forward to the new challenge.  Here's to the next 134 activity points I earn.  Wish I had another 7 days of vacation.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Keep It Moving....

A Tribe Called Quest had it right, Keep It Moving to the KIM.

Well, I only lost 0.4 pounds this week but its okay. It's still a lost and I do need to cut some things from my diet.  I weighed in extra early Saturday morning because we had to get on the road to head down to Myrtle Beach.  We packed up the baby, two teenagers, and two grandmas.  We are heading to our timeshare at the Sheraton Plantation. Its a perfect place for us with the kids and the baby.  We got in at 4 and just hung out at the resort.

Sunday I went for a run.  I did my long run for the day.  Nice thing about our resort is that it is right on the East Coast Greenway in Myrtle Beach.  Not a bad run.  I did it early so the humidity wasn't bad.  It was still in the 70s but good for the South.  I am so thankful for my new water belt.  I ran 6 miles.  I almost got hit crossing one road.  That was a first since I never have any major roads to cross by my house. I ran past the Margaritaville which motivated me even more because I love ritas.  I also ran past these woods with a bunch of goat paths from bums living in the woods. Was a bit creepy and sad.

We also headed to the pool. Our hotel has a lazy river, bar, and all kinds of things.  Got to go now since the grandmas are about to watch Avery.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Big Week

Man, this week flew by. After my brother left I had another busy week with everything going on.  The summer has been flying by. Weight Watchers has been going good.  I only lost 0.4 pounds this week but that it is okay.  I did have two days with family in town and it is still a loss.  I was hoping for a bigger loss but you can't be greedy.

Running wise, life has been good.  My shin splints seem to be staying at bay.  I did hurt my arch randomly at my desk this week.  So weird.  I got up and it felt like I tore my plantar fascia.  I used some KT Tape and it was better with some ice.  I was super dehydrated one day this week so maybe that was part of the problem. I did get a 6.6 mile run last weekend.  Felt good. It was the longest run of my training so far.  I also ran 7.2 miles this morning. It was a beautiful run.  I used my new amphipod water bottle thing.  It helped me.  I also got a running visor.  It was drenched when I got done.  Like completely soaked.  Thanks for Running Etc. for the visor (More on that later).  My legs were a bit tire at the end but that is expected when your running your longest run ever.  I did have a tender nipple from boogie boarding yesterday and getting sunburned.  It was my first bloody nipple from running (I have had one from boogie boarding).

nice view from my run this morning

I also became an Official Ambassador for Running Etc.  What does this mean?  Well for me, my goal is to run more races aka keep losing weight.  It also means I get to represent the best local running store in Hampton Roads when I do run.  I think I was probably twice the weight of every other ambassador but somebody does have to represent the Clydesdale Division at races, right?  Last night we had our kick-off meeting.  It was fun meeting everyone. I am definitely not the pro-typical running or am in the in crowd but I look forward to getting to know everyone better.

At home.  Everything is good. Lori has a few more weeks off and Avery keeps growing and learning.  Next week we have a vacation.  We also took Avery to the beach yesterday.  She enjoyed it.  We all did really.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Life is Good!

Man.  What a weekend.  Got to spend some quality time with my family.  Sometimes people don't relate until you family lives out of town.  My mom lives the closest and is still 4 hours away.  My brother lives in Michigan which is 12 hours away and I don't even really know where my dad lives.  When you go from being in the same county as all of them for 28 years to having them all far away is tough.  But I am fortunate that we can all travel and visit.  I am also lucky I have great in laws.

Back to the weekend........My brother, girl friend, and niece were in town.  My was also in town.  Not often she gets to see her boys together since she lives in the middle.  It was nice just catching up with my brother.  We are so different but we are very much the same.  We took them to the Virginia Aquarium, tried to take them to Sandbridge (Red Flags up all weekend), and hung out having a great time.  Had a bonfire one night (even though my brother played board games the whole time).  But overall, it was just great having a weekend with our families.  It's crazy to think we both have our own houses, careers, and families.  I remember a time when we were debating on which Star Wars movie was better, or how he got me stitches from stabbing me with a broken broom stick.  Instead, I played with my niece a bunch while my brother held Avery intently and played baseball and board games with Tim.  Tim loved it.  He's always looking for someone to throw around with, especially the least athletically gifted people I have ever met (My brother).  We had a ton of laughs, stories to tell Lori, and just caught up with each other like we seen each other yesterday.  I don't think I could of moved so fa away from my family if it wasn't for Facebook or cell phones.

But it was great having my big brother in town.  I know he probably doesn't see it but I appreciate him more than he will ever know.  Through him I learned a lot about life, how to be a father, how to overcome mistakes, and without his thirst for knowledge I probably wouldn't of ever went to college.  I loved having Allison here too.  She is a spitfire, just like my brother was.  Shes full speed all day.  it was great having Melissa here too.  She keeps both my brother  and niece in check.  But three days is never enough.  not with family.  Before I knew it, we had to say our goodbyes.  Always tough.  But it only means we got to see each other.

Besides family this weekend, it was also a great weekend for my running and Weight Watchers.  I lost 3.6 pounds over two weeks.  Which is pretty good since I went out of town last weekend and I had family in town this weekend.  I also ran my longest distance ever too.  I ran 6.6 miles yesterday and it felt great.  I earn 30 activity points yesterday.  I am about to start bumping up the mileage here so I am really nervous and excited.  Less than 3 months until my half.

Tim also had his last baseball games with his first travel baseball team.  He started with the Virginia Wildcats three years ago as a 11u team.  He's grown a ton over those three summers.  it's amazing how much he grew from a kid to a young teenager.  He has grown as an individual and player.  It has been a great time with all our friends.  Even when the team split into two age groups, it was still a great time.  Kids came and kids left but Tim was always a fixture as a leader on the team.  He has been lucky to play with his buddies for so long and coaches he admired.  But time does change things and we look forward to the next chapter.  During those 3 years, we took the boys to Myrtle Beach for the Ripken Tournament, to Cooperstown.  They went from not winning a game in tournaments to finally going undefeated and winning a tournament this summer.  It's been a long, sweaty, hot adventure but it has been spectacular.  During that time we got married, had Avery and enjoyed so many great moments on the ball field.  My personal favorite was Cooperstown.  That's where Tim really came into his own.  He was third place in the Golden Arm Contest.  He was the only kid to make it in the hole of the target.  He also had the best batting average for his team.  he went 5-6 the last day and was just spraying balls across the field.  Before that weekend, he was always a bottom of the lineup guy and wasn't confident at the plate.  Since then, he ended the season batting cleaning.  He's much more mature, calm and doesn't swing at bad pitches.  It's amazing watching him develop.  It's also awesome watching him play doing what he loves.  To the next adventure.

Besides all this, I am happy I finally got my RunKeeper widget going on my website.  Very happy about that.  Anyways, back to the grind at work.

Friday, July 4, 2014

#hurricaneartie 'Murica style

So it's Independence Day right now.  MY brother Scott and his family decided to come down to visit to finally meet his niece.  I was lucky enough to me in the waiting room when his daughter was born.  I know my brother has been waiting patiently to meet Avery.  This trip has been planned for a while but clearly the weather gods couldn't be on our sides.  All week the storm has been routed to go just by our house.  Scott and Melissa were freaking out. Worrying if they should even come.  Rest assured they made the right decision and got in last night.  The hurricane actually went over the OBX but shot east to not hit Virginia Beach.

For us, this is just part of living here.  Last year's hurricane went right over our house.  It sounds worst than it really was but it is still something you need to worry about.  It can always go bad.  But I have been really lucky and since I have lived down here I have had two major hurricanes go over my residence.  Once in my apartment, and once in house with my wife.  To Scott and Melissa this is pretty major because they typically only get to watch from afar and see all the crappy TV viewing of over dramatization.  Never do they have the stories of the good local residents helping each other out.

But anyways, It is July 4th and we are relegated to the indoors.  Its a little windy and rainy but overall its fine.  Hopefully my brother and Melissa are calm and we can enjoy our day while all the tourists stay away.  LOL.

I was planned to run this morning but clearly I can't.  No worries.  I ran yesterday and will make up my miles another day.

PS - My brother finally got to meet Avery.  It was great.  The toughest part of living so far away from my family is not being able to have them spend more time with Avery.

Last night we were lucky enough to get great weather.  We grilled out and had a good time spending time together.

Here's a few pictures from the storm and dinner.