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Showing posts from 2014

2014 was relaxing, onward to 2015

My goal for 2014 was to be still. No life altering events. For the most part I succeeded. My other goal for this year was to excel at running and try out a triathlon. Well, injury happened which killed my running this summer. Not before some excellent races though. I did my childhood dream of running the Grand Rapids River Bank Run 25K. Finished in 1:55. The following weekend I ran a back to back race called conquer the capital (10k then 1/2 marathon the next day). That probably wasn't very bright :). During my downtime I did a lot of cross training though and now getting back into running. I only ran for 4 months out of the year but still covered over 390 miles. After injury I was told I could bike as long as it didn't hurt, I covered 989 miles. I know, super nerdy to keep all that data, but hey I like data :). All and all, it was a good year.

So what to do for a goal in 2015?  Triathlon sounds nice, lets do one of those. Lets also make it a goal not to do 2 weekend races in …

2014 FIA Formula One World Championship...

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... is over and here are my thoughts.

New Power Units - Amazing. I don't care about how loud it is, the tech in these cars is outstanding. See video here that explains more.



Merc Power - Unstoppable... when it works. Mercedes reliability were not really that bad. They had a couple failures, but who doesn't? These are prototype engines. Bound to have some failures. Just a bummer it had to be on the final race to decide the drivers championship. On the other hand, every engine manufacture had failures this season, Renault were the worst, Ferrari a very close second, and then Merc. It is a new formula after all.

ROS vs. HAM - Everyone thought Hamilton (HAM) was going to dominate, so not terribly surprised he won. I had a feeling Rosberg (ROS) would put up a fight. I was right. Curious if it would have ended differently if they would have went head to head (ROS suffered ERS failure 1/2 way through the final race, removing all possibility of winning the championship).  Either way, con…

Winter is Coming, and I Can Not Wait

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I've never been so excited for winter. You are probably thinking, "what's wrong with you?"  The answer is simple, fat biking.  Its just fun. Granted I haven't tried it in snow, but if its anything like riding in the sand, then I'll be having a great time.

I've done about 100 miles of single track trail using the bike and a bit cruising around town. It's a little different than a typical mountain bike. Its comfortable, slow, and can go pretty much anywhere.

This is a new outlook on winter for me. Usually I am dread everything winter. Cold, snow, ugh. I hope that this activity changes that outlook, and I go out often. If not I'll follow this up with a craigslist ad selling my fat bike :P

SO, when you look out in winter and you see this:


I will see this:


Happy riding :)

Formula 1 Multiclass Solution

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After watching the Friday press conference for F1 I got an idea.



We see this all the time, F1 teams failing and new ones coming in. The topic of money cap has came up once again after two back marker teams went belly up. Toto Wolf (Merc boss) speaks that it would be impossible to police the cap. I kind of agree.  Sports car racing has a different solution that I think F1 could try.  They have multiple classes. Prototype one (P1) is the extreme, unlimited budget, etc... then they have P2 which is limited resources, spec engines, etc... This gives a more reasonable approach with new teams. What if F1 adopted that? It would make the back markers matter, which would be nice IMO.  The teams that want to do the money cap could, and the manufactures that want to spend $300 million can.

Endomondo vs Strava, Round 2 (update)

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So I've been using Strava for the past couple months, and its great!

Features I love:

Automatically linking sections I bike/run with marked sections and show how I did compared to others that have traveled that path.When I run with another person and we are both using Strava it tells you about it.Easy to use interface on my phone and my smart watch (Google Wear device)You tell Strava what shoes you have and it tells you when you have put enough miles on themYou setup your bike(s) and it tells you how many miles you are putting on themThere newest feature, upcoming events. I love having my goal listed so I know why I'm training. So why write all these features? Well, Endomondo came out with Google Wear support, that is why. The interesting thing, its better than Stravas integration.  Yes they both tell you how long you have been running/biking, how far you have gone, and your pace (average only for Strava).  Endomondo took it to the next level, full customization. If they track …

Endomondo vs Strava vs Runtastic

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Endomondo is a great service, but they removed the Nike+ integration which makes me sad. So like any other disgruntled user I look elsewhere.  Through friends and Google I found Strava and Runtastic.

All of these services have a mobile app, sweet, moving on.

Strava and Runtastic both have Android Wear (a new smart watch platform by Google) Support (yes I got one, its amazing, more on that here).  Endomondo just released Pebble support (its one of the first smart watches), so who knows when they will get Wear. Strava has really clean integration with the smart watches, I can say things like "start run" or "start Strava" to my Android Wear watch and it starts up the app, connects to GPS, and has a big blue go button to click to start. If I say run it defaults to run. If I say Strava it defaults to my default sport (currently set to cycling).  I always have my phone, so it just makes sense to use an app over my Nike+ GPS watch.

Runtastic's app and website is flood…

5/3 River Bank Run, Conquering the Capital 2014, and Injury

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5/3 River Bank Run
Everyone has that home event that they want to do. For me that was the 5/3 River Bank run in Grand Rapids, MI. My home town.  Five years ago I would have never thought it was possible to run so far (25k). After all my hard work, I finally could say it shouldn't be too bad :). I did a lot of reflection back to my old couch potato life building up to this event. It was also really cool because family was going to be there to cheer me on.

On race day I was feeling really good. I did a great warm up with one of the front runners. Man it would be cool to be way up there. I decided to be ambitious and start with the 7 min/mile group. I stayed with them for the first 1/2 of the event, however then I decided to cool it off a bit so I didn't die.  My 1/2 way split was 7:05 min/mile. I continued on, and I must say the crowd was great! Every time I was feeling down they picked me back up. My last 1/2 went by pretty fast with some tough hills. I finished at 7:25 min/mile…

Crazylegs 2014

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There is always that one race that defines you as a runner.  One that you look back on and say, "yup, this is when I crossed the line." The line that distinguished you from an average joe to a runner. Crazylegs 2013 was that race for me. A year ago I ran this race, it was my first ever beyond the distance of 5K. It moved me beyond my comfort zone, beyond what I knew I could accomplish.  Looking back on it, it's where I started a journey. It all started with a friend making a comment saying, "you should sign up" (thanks Dave), and sign up I did.



My goal for this year was simple, beat Tim from last year.  I have been light training all winter.  Running outside about one time per week with friends and inside 0-2 times. This spring I started gearing up for a race I have in a couple weeks. However, the Crazylegs 8K was also on my list. I also switched up my training regiment this year.  I decided to base my training off of Hal Higdon 1/2 marathon intermediate traini…

Shamrock Shuffle 10K Review

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Shamrock Shuffle 10K, more like Shamrock Shiver 10K.  It was a chilly one. With a real feel of -5 degrees one couldn't possibly think this was a good idea.  I brushed off the negativity in my head, and geared up for the start.  This was a typical Madison event, going by my favorite hills on Observatory Drive.  I like these hills because of how challenging they are.  When you finish one you go right into another, 3 in total.  It is super challenging, and you feel some form of pride when you are done.

The way out wasn't bad, we were going with the wind.  I did a 6:50 for the first 2 miles, I was surprised as I didn't think I was going that quickly but I continued on.  On the turn back I hit the 5k mark at 21m 40s, and then the wind hit.  It was cold, it was strong, but we continued on.  I actually caught myself drafting people, it actually helped a bit.  Once we left the shoreline it wasn't as bad, and back to the hills.  On the way back it was less exciting.  We hit th…

March Already? Recovering from Injury

So its March already.  I don't think I wrote in this thing since January. I get I was just so busy with Feb, it just slipped by.  I just setup my plan to run the Grand Rapids River Bank Run (25k) in May. I can finally start training after I had some weird foot/heel issue that I was dealing with. I have 10 weeks to get up to a 15.5 mile distance. I think I can do it since I've been running this whole winter (except for the past week or so).  My schedule is going to consist of:

* Monday - Weights + Yoga
* Tuesday - "Fun" Run at EH
* Wednesday - Track day (sprints | tempo alternating)
* Thursday - Weights & Light Run
* Friday - Rest
* Saturday - Long run
* Sunday - Cross train (bike, racquetball, etc...) or Light run

I based the schedule on a 12 week 1/2 marathon training on http://www.halhigdon.com. It should be rough since I'm starting a bit later than I planned, but alas. Better late than never :-).

Goodbye 2013, Hello 2014!

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Last year was the most challenging year of my life.  I did two of the most stressful things that you can do.  It made me a stronger person, and I am a better person for going through these experiences.  I started a new job, which is wonderful! I am so happy there. It is a very rewarding job, and the people are great! However, with any transition it is stressful. I also got a divorce which is pretty obvious why its stressful. Weird saying it still, but it happened. I think I am doing pretty great though! I have an amazing family who is very supportive and great friends who are super fun to hangout with.  I also got a new kitten.  Her name is Mia Mittens aka Miacat (pronounced mer-cat).  Her and Otis are starting to get along just fine.  It is cute, they are friends.  Watching a 20 lb cat get chased by a 4 lb kitten never gets old.

I also got a new nephew! He is a bundle of joy, just adorable.  I wish I lived closer to all of my family but thankfully technology can bridge that gap a lit…