Run Walk - Pick One
So what's the deal with the good old run/walk when running late for work, or a date, or a meeting or something like that. Have you ever seen this funny phenomenon, it is hiliarious and I am unfortunately guilty of it. I am not sure what is going through our brains in the fit of panic. I think our brain short circuits and sends our legs in spasms that make us run five steps, walk three, speed walk four before picking it up into a full out sprint then shut it down to a walk again. It goes something like this.
Question you ask yourself: Am I late?
Solution: Start running
Q: Am I really that late?
A: Maybe not.
S: Slow down to a walk then pick it up to a brisk walk with arms pumping
Q: How much farther do I have to go?
A: Five blocks but Oh Crap I only have 2 minutes and 20 seconds to get there
S: Pick it back up to a run (and start sweating)
Q: Do I look silly doing the Run/Walk?
S: Continue to do run/walk for 5 blocks and still get there LATE!!
In order to reduce the humiliation make the decision before you leave to full out run to get there still late or just take it and realize you probably won't make it on time no matter how fast you move. Then you will only feel awkward when walking in the room late and not the entire way there as well.
BooBoo and I did the ritual underpants run of Kona. Booboo is the little guy in the picture and I'm the one with the tan calves and the ghostly looking thighs. He got a lot of eyes looking at him. It was definitely a bonding time for father and son. He was a little timid throughout the whole run which blows my mind because at home we can't keep clothes on him. We and about 1000 other athletes did the annual race, jogging up Ali'i Dr through tons of spectators. That's when I thought to myself - look at all the people here just for this silly little underpants run, imagine what it will be like on Saturday. We had a ball and hopefully got some much needed sun on those thighs.
WHO'S READY TO RACE - WE ARE!!!
Pre-Race Lake Placid
The atmosphere up here is electrifying. There are athletes everywhere. There are Ironman flags, banners, gear everywhere. There is spandex everywhere you look. On the beach there is a sea of athletes wearing wetsuits. There are the fittest looking people everywhere I turn. I second guess my training at every moment. I question my fitness with every thought. Have I done everything I could of done to prepare for this? Have I rested enough or pushed to hard? Is my game plan going to work? BUT it is finally here and there is nothing that you can change now. All the miles have been logged, all the long hours have been spent in the water, on the bike or on the pavement. It is finally here and now I have to channel all that training into this one race. I need to stay focused, stick to my game plan, race smart and go like hell. I am excited and am looking forward to this adventure. I will go in as a triathlete and hopefully come out being an IRONMAN!!!! Can't wait and all my questions will soon be answered.
You can follow me on Sunday 7/22/12 - www.ironmanlive.com
Click on Lake Placid - My bib is #1338 or you can type in Smith.
Or if you type in Men 30-34 you can find out my place in my age group
The Cows in the Pasture
My wife often asks me what do you think about while you do your long rides or long runs? So, this one is especially for her. On my long runs I tend to head out into the country, where I run by farm after farm. Most of the farms are crop farms but every now and then there are farms with some big groups of cattle. So as I make my way passed these cattle farms my mind begins to wonder.
I come around the bend and I spot them, probably a ton of pure beef per head of cattle ranging in colors from a rusty brown, brown, white, black and white. I don't think they spot me yet, as they are too busy with their faces stuffed in the long grass eating breakfast. They usually don't pick their heads up 'til I am almost right in front of them. I make my way towards them staying strong, keeping perfect form, and gliding like the wind when the first one spots. After the first one spots me they all start picking there heads up from the knee deep grass and start MOOING and staring at me. Each moo that comes out sounds a little different.
This is were I get paranoid are they MOOING about me. I think this is how it is going down.
Cow 1 says, " Look at that form it is perfect."
Cow 2 says, " He's going too fast he's going to blow up on the way back."
Cow 1 then asks, "Where do you think he is running to?"
Cow 2 then replies," I don't see the point of running, I am so glad I am a cow where I can just watch knuckleheads like this torturing themselves."
Cow 3 then chimes in, "Whoa look at that cool belt (Fuel Belt) he's wearing is he a superhero or something?"
Cow 2 states, "Superhero or not, its too hot, those water bottles are too small, and he started out way too fast."
That's all I can make out as I make my way passed them. I tell myself - I will show them on the way back that I can hold my own. But that's when I start to question myself was Cow 2 right did I pace this wrong, am I going too fast, what should I do? I decide - screw it and I drop the hammer. I stay strong to mile 10 my turn around point and back to my mooing friends. I have about 7 miles till I get to the farm and I am running out of liquids but still feeling great. Finally I get to the farm, where I gather my composure, straighten my form and wipe the sweat from my brow. I am thinking "What are they going to say this time. I am still crushing it and probably going to negative split the run." I spot them and as I approach they are not picking there heads up so I break stride a little trying to make more of a stomping sound to get their attention, but that doesn't work. They're more worried about the grass they are basically inhaling. I decide to clear my throat to get their attention. That didn't work either. I am devastated they are ignoring me and don't care about my great run I am about to put in the bank. I pass them and finally make my way to the bend where they will be out of sight and I make one last look back and Cow 2 looks up at where I just was. I think to myself, " Come on Cow 2 you're killing me. He probably thinks I gave up since he won't see me come by."
Oh well there will always be another long run and I'll show those cows. Hope you enjoyed my thoughts from my long runs.
Breaking Wind Etiquette
So I am wondering what the proper etiquette is for breaking wind during training. Today I got caught breaking wind about ever other stride. It must have been something I ate, I swear. I ran the first half of my easy run today by myself then looped around picked up my wife and finished my run with her. On the first half I was squeeking with every step and at my turnaround point I notice two high school aged kids behind me snickering. Luckily I had my sunglasses on to hide some of my embarassment. I finished the first half of my run and returned home to pick up my wife and was hoping to engage in some good conversation. Unfortunately, it was twenty five long minutes of bubble noises. My wife looks at me halfway through our run and said are you always this gassy. I said yeah I guess I never really noticed because there isn't anybody around to make me aware of it. Then we headed through a neighborhood and she told me to cut it out, there's people out and about.
So this brings me to my question about breaking wind etiquette. Are we as endurance athletes suppose to fight through the discomfort of gas pains along with all the other pain, discomfort, mental anguish we are going through? In one way passing gas shows that you are relaxed when you release that stench, which is a good thing. Also its so funny, its always a good way to add a little humor to a long ride or run. I don't care how old you are, breaking wind is hilarious and never gets old unless you are trapped in a confined space, then not so pleasant. I am going to keep stinking up my runs and rides to make myself as comfortable as possible and if that offends people I guess I will not have you as a training partner. So, sorry Babe I'm going to keep letting them go, its just a comfort thing. Let loose, let them fly, stay comfortable and don't forget to laugh.
I am the father of a three year old boy, my only son, my pride and joy, MY BOY. He is great, he's my little buddy, I call him my "Boo Boo." I'm not sure were that came from, was never into Yogi Bear but there is the possibility. He is great he is just a ball full of energy. He bounces of the walls, he loves getting dirty but not crazy about bugs. I'm working on it. He loves to wrestle, rough house, play with his cars, he loves to head butt, and loves football. I swear he travels at lightening speed, and he moves with such stealth. I turn around for a second and poof he is gone.
I went to the bike shop the other day to get a new bike helmet, so we get in the store I said " Boo Boo, stay right with me and don't touch anything." He nods his head, I turn my head to look at a helmet with .25 seconds elapsed, and all I hear is crash bang boom. I turn around, and were is Boo Boo on the other side of the store staring horrified at a mannequin laying on the floor in four pieces. He looked up at me waiting to be yelled at but I didn't have time to yell at him, I had to put this thing back together before management came over. Couldn't figure it out quick enough though. The manager comes over I have an arm between my legs, a torso under one arm and trying to set up the things legs with my the other arm while the head was staring at us. I looked at Boo Boo like really, Bud. Come on.
The whole way home I was thinking about what happened and how fast he can get away. The more I thought about I started analyzing his running form. He's got the classic high knees that come close to hitting his chest and a high elbow swing with his triceps never falling past parallel with the ground. The high elbows is one thing but he has a way of making it look like he is about to take off. I guess he needs the high elbows so they don't bang into his high knees. I don't want him to bang his knees all up. I wondered how he can be so stealthy with that kind of form. So my predicament is this do I try and straighten this out or just let it go.
After much deliberation I decided to let him just go with what feels natural to him. I didn't want to explain everything he needs to correct and him to look at me like I have two heads. Also I don't want him to become even faster and even more stealthy because that would make it harder for me to detect his spastic movements. At least now I can catch him out of the corner of my eye with arms flapping in the wind and knees a blazing. He is fun and I just have to snicker when I see him running. I know if they have to do a stair climb in preschool all the other kids will be going down. He'll figure it someday. We've got time.
HE WILL GROW INTO HIS FORM RIGHT!?
Why is it so tempting?
I want to know why it is so tempting for motorists to feel the need to honk their horns, yell obscenities while hanging out of the car window and try and hold a conversation with us while we are out there riding.
HONKING THE HORN: I understand that about 10% of the honkers have good intentions, they honk from farther away and its a quick toot toot. I like this, very courteous, and always gets a thank you wave as they drive by. Then there's the honk when they are right up on you and HONK for about 5sec. Is this because they think we are hard of hearing, they think they are better than us because they have a horn and we don't, or because they like to toot there own horn?
YELLING OBSCENITIES: Let me first say I don't understand this concept in general hanging out of a car window or not. These people are hanging out of there car windows yelling at us telling us to get off the road while this nimrod is dangling out of a car. Who is the unsafe one? Maybe next time I'll offer this guy my bike helmet just to protect him in case he gets side swiped by a tree branch. Hey. I'm not wishing that upon him but...
CONVERSATION GUY: This guy is a little different than our yeller, he will drive next to us to tell us how dangerous it is to be riding on the rode. This is all happening while he is leaning into the passenger seat, with one hand on the wheel and eyes on us with a glance at the road every 10 seconds or so. What is wrong with this guy? Besides the fact that he could run us of f the road, oh yeah and get in a head-on collision which would probably take us out also. Everything is wrong with this guy: he insults our intelligence, could potentially take us out in the process, and he is being so reckless. I guess he is trying to make us aware that there are vehicles on the roads, so be careful. So, if this is the case the thought is in the right place but the timing is way off.
Ride safe everyone and follow all rules of the rode and do not get distracted!!
Mr. "T"riathlon's evolution
Alright, I was talking with my really good friend this morning at the pool, Mandy Lovett, a fellow Triathlete, about music. She told me that her husband made her a mix tape of songs for her workouts. So I said jokingly to her "what did he put them on a cassette for so you could play it on your "walkman." We both laughed but as I started my next set I was like, man, those things were the bomb and I believe until this past year they were still being made. But anyway, I think the technology for our portable music "boxes" must of been engineered by perhaps, need I say it, a triathlete. Just think about:
It first started with portable transistor radio and I bet Mr. "T"riathlete was like lets hook up some wires to this thing and put mini speakers right next to our ears. We have have to cut down on drag and weight so we can't use the big earmuff type headphones. So Mr. "T" came up with mini speakers covered in an abrasive foam material connected by a thin piece of steel, probably cutting both drag and weight from its predecessor by about 100 percent. The only problem was that when your clothing moved it would sometime change the station from 80's rock, to country, to gospel to static.
Next came the cassette tape so Mr. "T" thought wow that looks pretty aerodynamically sound if I use that I won't have to listen to static, commercials and really bad songs during crucial parts of my workouts. So he came up with the ever popular "Walkman." He also added the bright yellow Sony Walkman probably for night time running so you could be seen more easily. I thought of it all.
There was a small design flaw though, the athletes would have to carry their walkman. "We can't have this on our long workout days, we can't waste any energy on holding the walkman, we need all of our energy going toward our workout," he thought. So the ingenious Mr. "T" came up with the velcro arm band. GENIUS!!!
After years of dominating the market the walkman was shown the exit door but didn't leave without a fight in true triathlete style. The Portable CD Player came on the scene. This was super sleek looking - the CD was reflective like the moon blankets you get after a cold race. This is perfect. Mr. "T"'s plan was to incorporate the velcro arm band or incorporate huge pockets in training gear to help hold this contraption. Mr. "T" then put on the CD player a song time window that could double as a stop watch if one was inclined to do the math in order to pass the monotony of a long run. One glich though - when you bounced the CD skipped. Not to mention the weight of these things were pretty heavy, a major no no for training long distances. It was probably the 6 AA batteries you needed to operate the high piece of technology. One upgrade Mr. "T" did make was the strapless headphones. He took out the steel connector piece attached to the speaker, did away with the abrasive foam covers and made the speakers even smaller to fit into your ears, all weight and aerodynamic upgrades, for sure. They probably were 50/50 with the walkman for use in workouts.
Next came the I-pod and this revolutionized the portable music industry. Mr."T" clever design combined electronic technology and light weight materials to come up with a music box that was smaller than a pack of gum and weighed even less. You could store hundreds of songs and never listen to the same song twice. Awesome. It even passes the aerodynamic test of being paper thin and the weight test (can't be more than a few ounces). Mr. "T" has come up with the perfect music box for working out.
Wait hold the Phone what if Mr."T" could add GPS to it or maybe a Heart Rate Monitor. I think we might be on to something...
So this all started with the cassette mix tape, Mandy and I were talking about and it turned into all this.
Special Thanks to Mr. "T" for making my workouts so much easier with all the innovations to the "Music Box."
Kenrick Smith - Be a part of the K17Sport Lifestyle.
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