Wednesday, May 26, 2010

G- day minus 21

Its coming. I'm getting psyched about this marathon, but also doubting myself big time. I keep thinking that I've slacked on my training too much, that I'm not in marathon shape. Maybe that's true, maybe its not; we'll find out in 22 days. I've had a tough couple of days of workouts lately. No so much because the distance or lactic acid or whatever but its just been hot as hell. No kidding, my Monday and Tuesday runs were both above 90 degrees, which is a lot when you're used to running in subzero temperatures most of the year. Luckily, Monday and Tuesday were both "short" days; 6 and 8 miles. Its all good. I struggled through Monday, but thats okay because it was an easy day anyways. Tuesday I smartened up and wore a water belt, but I poured more water on myself than in my mouth. That was a weird run. I was a little more than halfway through near Hamline, and the temperature dropped 15 degrees just like that. I mean, I've ran in and out of storms before, but I've never felt anything like that. One minute it was 95 and sunny, the next it was 65 and cloudy. Yesterday I ran a track workout, 12x200's. Not too difficult, right? I didn't go all that fast either; the first five were around 40 seconds and the last seven all at 44 seconds. I ran it after I ran a track workout I had made for the kids I coached. Only one showed up so I figured I would run with him to give him extra motivation. That was designed to be a lactic threshold workout, and I think it worked. We did a race sim last practice, and the kid totally lost it in the last 100 meters of his 800, just totally died. So, I wanted to get him used to running hard on dead legs. We did a five minute easy run, followed directly by three 200's back to back. We did three sets of that with three minutes rest in between. So, that's that.

Last I left you, I was still in school. Well, now I'm not and my five day summer vacation is coming to an end. I'll be starting up my Constitutional Rights and Liberties tonight, which I've heard is a pretty interesting class. However interesting, its still going to suck because its five hours two days a week. Also, since school has been over with, I moved into a house with a couple of my fraternity brothers. Actually, I moved in last Thursday, and was finished with school on Friday, but whatevski. Anyways, this house looks- well-- it looks like four guys have lived there for the past 20 years. Everything's fallen into a state of disrepair, the windows are cracked and fixed with scotch tape, that kind of stuff. So, my question to anybody who reads this is how do we clean the place? Last night I suggested that we have a Friday or Saturday night where we lock the door and say that no one can go out and party until the house is spotless. The problem is no one would buy into that. College kids are very good at making up excuses to go drink.

One of the problems we have is that my house is also the "chapter house" for our Sigma Chi chapter. I put that in quotes because even though we're a chapter house in Sigma Chi's eyes, we aren't in the City of St. Paul's, so we have to conform to residential housing laws. Specifically, we can not have more than 5 people in the house legally. Since the brothers use it as a chapter house though, brothers tend to congregate at our house, party there, crash on the couch, that stuff. So instead of trying to clean up after four people, we have four people cleaning up for 20. Its an uphill battle and no one seems to want to take up the cross. I cleaned up the kitchen last Saturday morning after I got out of class on Wednesday and it was a mess by Sunday night.

Um, other than that, I'm sure you've heard that Nike's coming out with the Victory XC, which drops sometime in July. They look sick, and first to the finish has them in seven colorways. Yeah, they're way out of my price range at $110, but hopefully if I can save my pennies over the summer I can pick up a pair before cross country season. Yes, I know I run for Brooks, but some Acitone will take the swoosh right off, allthough by July the Mach 12 will come out, so we'll have to weigh our options then. Who knows though, I'm broke like nobody's business. Its not like I spend my money irresponsibly, but it seems like every couple of weeks I end up broke. This week's going to be especially bad because I have to pay for a hotel room for Grandmas, a book for my class that I can't find anywhere online, and I have to put money on my bus card. I have $12 in my bank account right now, and all told that will probably cost me $130. God, stuff is expensive. I don't get paid until next week, and rent comes due then too. I want to believe everything's going to be okay, but in the back of my mind I know it isn't.

Monday, May 17, 2010

G- day minus 32/ 2 race reports for your reading pleasure

Hey guys. We're on the advent of finals week, and my last week as being a Sophomore. I move into my house on Thursday, and I have one more week at 69mpw, two at 70, then its taper time. I'm super excited. I don't understand why finals week is a big deal for everybody. It seems like everyone on this campus goes crazy when the calendar hits May. I won't lie, I've been obscenely busy too, but hey, thats college life. I dunno, the way I see it is if you manage your time effectively, don't do anything stupid, and take good notes, you'll be okay. But then, I'm also not taking bio, engineering, chemistry, those types of hard classes. For me, finals week is the least stressful weak of the year. Any week I don't have to wake up before 6 everyday and have one class a day is awesome.
So running. Running has been awesome lately. I'm already up to 150 miles this month, which is 20 more than April already and 50 more than March. This last week though its been tough to get excited about any of my runs. Last week it was in the low to mid 40's and raining every day. It was downright depressing. I may have just hit an all time low there. However, the weather seemed to take a turn for the better on Saturday and its been in the mid 70's ever since. I did an awesome 17 mile long run on Sunday that I'll post, but I think I'm going to do that this weekend too, assuming I'm in St. Paul and not Edina. I was actually supposed to do 16, but I couldn't pass up that nice of a run on such a nice day.

In terms of race reports, I ran two this week. First was the Twin Cities 1 Mile, which was run down Nicollet Mall on Thursday, may 13th. Before the race I ran a quick mile, mile and a half with Andrea, and then took the St. Thomas bus to the Minneapolis campus, and ran the three quarters of a mile or whatever to the start line on 3rd. Saw my running club on my run there, most of which were hitting the bars. I was running the 29 and under open wave because even though I signed up with the TC Running Club, Twin Cities in Motion finally got smart and realized that I couldn't actually compete with them since my USATF membership ran out last year. I thought it was worth a shot though; it got me a discount on my Get in Gear registration.
When I got to the start line, I did a couple striders and a little more short and fast stuff. Too much running? Who knows, but that would probably be a big factor in my poor performance. Before I get to the race, lets get to the weather. It was low 40's on race day, with a pretty sharp crosswind once you got past 10th street. I was actually feeling pretty good when the race started, I moved up into like the third row of people in the start area. I went out way too fast. I went out with the chase pack and went through the half mile in 3:10 and fading. As expected, I flew through the 10th st. intersection and died. Except I died harder than I thought I would. I was standing still and getting passed left and right, or at least that was what it felt like. Fun's over, I had to gut it out from that point on. I finished in a respectable time I guess, 7:04, but I got outkicked by everyone and their mothers in the chute.

The second race I ran on Saturday was the Autism 5k at Lake Harriet. Note that I said I ran it, I didn't race it. I ran it with Andrea, the girl I took to sweetheart, as well as her roommate and their friend. We got there at 8:00: 8:15 maybe? I didn't have a watch on; I purposely left it in my dorm. Throughout our runs, I could tell that Andrea was worried about hitting a certain time, which is a path to injury for all new runners. Its pretty simple- you push yourself too hard and get injured, and then lose interest in the sport altogether. Even so, I was planning on racing this one (and winning it), so I had myself chip timed. That worked well because since I ran with Andrea the whole way, her time was the same as mine; 38:33. Andrea's roommate and her friend Lucas took off on us a half mile in, so we were alone most of the way. The pack really thinned out over the first mile, there weren't that many people in the race. We talked about love, life and setbacks (that's a line from an Atmosphere song; we talked about running mostly and the various setbacks she had with it. I did a couple rudimentary gate analysis too, and figured Andrea was in a neutral shoe whereas she needed support, and her roommate needed a neutral shoe. (she wasn't wearing running shoes) I think she's going to take me up on getting a new pair of shoes too, which is kind of cool. I looked at the results the next day- the winner (and the winner of my age group) ran a 17 something. That hurt, I guess, because I knew I could have won that race easily. I could have easily been polishing a trophy right now. That got me thinking though- there's more to life then medals and recognition. What are medals anyway? Just symbols of memories in a sense. That would be cool to look at for a while, but all luster fades over time. I don't know, to me, a trophy can't hope to replace those 38 minutes. Maybe I'm romanticizing a little bit, but is it a problem if my slowest 5k turned out to also be my best?

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

G day minus 45/ miles apart

I've been really busy lately with finals coming up, so the blog is playing fifth wheel behind school, running, work, and Sigma Chi. So for the one person who reads this besides me, sorry mom. I mean its rough. I've got the coffee pot going constantly. Most days I'll do to bed at one or two in the morning and wake up at five thirty or six. Is that what the real world is like? Anyways, enough complaining. I'm not going to go into detail about my running because if I did so it would take forever. Just know that running doesn't hurt at all anymore and because of that I ran my first 55 mile week in probably three months. But, I want to talk about life. I don't even care if anyone reads it, I just want to get some things off my shoulders. K, so here's 19 years of my life in three paragraphs:

Relay For Life Friday night was fun even though it got moved inside because of the weather. That was okay with me because I had to get up early to go to SLP and they ended the thing at midnight or there abouts. Its too bad though because I think the whole event lost something, especially the Luminaria ceremony. And I got my event budget extended for food from $50 to $100 because I went shopping Thursday night and bought Ground Chuck, spices, buns, etc. and obviously with the event being held inside we couldn't grill so we had like no food. So I had to make another food run to get sandwich stuff Friday before the thing started.We grilled out Saturday afternoon and cleaned the house and it was pretty delicious. We have some awesome chefs in the chapter.

Sweetheart was awesome- it was at the St. Paul Athletic club in the room where our charter was signed 20 years ago and it was super classy. I went with a girl who went to Edina and who I've had a crush on for since as long I can remember. I'm just glad I got a date, I was 0 for 5 in asking girls before her and was getting pretty down on myself. It was a great time and it was really interesting. We had a couple of the charter members of Delta Sigma Chi (they started the fraternity before it was chartered, but before the colonies become official Sigma Chi chapters they have to serve something like a probationary period) as well as most of the first Iota Tau pledge class and the Grand Consul (president of the fraternity at- large) who presented the charter speak. We also crowned a new Sweetheart of Sigma Chi, which was pretty cool.
Unfortunately, Andrea missed when we sang the Sweetheart of Sigma Chi to the new sweetheart so I sang it to her during the car ride home. It was as an awesome time though; I'm already looking forward to next year.

Next week is Sigma Chi Derby Days, which is something akin to the Mifflin Street party in Wisconsin at the bigger schools with less drinking. Its basically six philanthropy events on each night of the week where all the proceeds go to a charity. This year its Huntsman Cancer Institute, so that should be a lot of fun. We're doing meal donations this week for Huntsman where students can donate a meal from their plan and some of the proceeds go to Huntsman while the majority go to the St. Thomas administration. Oh whoops, did I really type that?
Really, why is ordering T- Shirts so convoluted? Why do they tell us which vendors we can and can't use? We have to get them cleared by Campus Life, Res Life and Public Safety? Why can't we just be students for once? do you hate fun? One more thing, Why must you skim $6.50 off a $8.50 donation? That's criminal. In the real world, thats called embezzlement and you go to jail for it. I should probably stop, lest I risk getting arrested by the secret police or the Gestapo or something...