Thursday, April 30, 2009

Running from The Swine Flu & Closing The Deal!

Sorry I have not checked in for a few days-- work has been a little crazy. The news biz is "abuzz" with the Swine Flu coverage, are you scared yet?????

I know some say we are over-doing it and maybe we are-- but at least we're getting the word out-- plus everyone is freaked out so hopefully we're getting good information out there for the masses to digest and stay healthy. The big message: wash your hands :)

I also SOLD my condo in Florida-- the condo I have been trying to sell for nearly 2 years!!!!! I signed all the paperwork yesterday and its a done deal! The market is a disaster in my former location (Ft. Myers). I won't tell you how much I lost on the deal (can we say I'm shirtless:) but it's better than paying a mortgage and association fees every month!

Alright-- now for the REAL reason I write this blog. Despite the hectic schedule-- I've been able to hit the pavement and I actually stepped up the running quite a bit.

Sunday: 4 Miles
Monday: 4 Miles
Tuesday: off, weight training
Wednesday: 7.5 Miles
Thursday: 7.5 Miles
Friday: planned easy 3Miles
Saturday: Louis Billitier 5k, Downtown Buffalo
Sunday: 5 Miles

If you notice-- I ran 7.5 miles Weds. and today-- two long distances in two days and I feel great! The soreness I was experiencing after the hilly 5K over the weekend has gone away thanks to Melanie and her advice to "skip" backwards after each run. I finally figured it out and although I get a few looks from people at the park it has helped tremendously!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Am I being Petty????

I was labeled a 20 year old-- shouldn't that be a GOOD thing??

As I told you in my last post. I ran in a 5K this past weekend, you know-- the hilly one! I did not stay to hear the official results. I saw my name tag on the board, showing I placed 73rd out of about 400, and I saw my time (23:48)on the clock when I crossed the finish line. I knew I did not place in the top three of my age group so there was no need to stay for an award-- so I left.

Yesterday, I checked the online results-- They were broken down into age groups-- not overall. I looked and looked but could not find my name anywhere in my age group (30-34)!!! Then-- My friend Jenny, who also ran, called laughing hysterically saying I was in the 18-22 year olds!!! They had Patrick Taney, age 20! I immediately wrote the race director an email politely pointing out the mistake.

To the race director's defense, she was very apologetic and made the change today. So, yes, I complained about being called 13 years younger-- if only I FELT 13 years younger!!! Here's why I was so upset--I placed 32ND out of the 20 somethings-- but 7Th out of my age group-- 7Th place is much better than 32ND!!!

BUT After it was all said and done-- I felt like I was being a little petty--- What would you have done?

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Reporting, From The Great Heron Run 5k!

23:48. That was my time for Saturday's 5K. Now-- If you compare that to my last 5K time (23:18)it sounds like I'm slacking a bit-- but this race was chock full of those dreaded-- HILLS.

It took place in my hometown, Geneva,N.Y.-- where I was born and raised. Geneva (about 2 hrs from Buffalo) is a suburb of Rochester and is the heart of the beautiful Finger Lakes area of New York State--

Known for it's wineries and-- gorgeous rolling hills:

And it was those hills that nearly KILLED me-- My calves still hurt. The route-- had a total of four hills, three of which were very steep. I was sooo tempted to walk up the last incline but thankfully decided against it. There was also added pressure here to finish at a decent time. A camera, from my TV station, was there filming. For those of you who don't know, I am a News Anchor for the ABC affiliate in Buffalo. The station is working on a story about the Buffalo Marathon (May 24Th) and the training-- My three colleagues and I-- are going through to get ready, we are only running the half. They chose this 5k to do my showcase story which will air sometime this month...I'm just happy I didn't embarrass myself too badly!

Question: What is your advice to get over those hills easier?? and why do my calves hurt so much? Is that from going up, or running down the hills too hard which I admit to doing in this race? Any help would greatly be appreciated.

Here are some more pictures of myself, and Friends who ran with me... By the way, the weather was wonderful! 80's, sunny-- almost too hot, which isn't bad for the end of April in Upstate NY.

Me and My Friend Jenny and her kids

All done!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Most Embarrassing Songs. Whats on Your IPOD?

I have to steal a thought from my new pal Sara Jones who writes "Rookie On The Run" (check it out-- great blog)! She had mentioned in one of her previous posts that she often thinks about her new "blogging friends" during her own experiences. I realize I now do the same.

First, on a personal note-- I think it's amazing how helpful each of you has been as we all train for something better. I thank you for that and I hope you know-- you really do keep me motivated. I really do often find myself thinking about all of you. For instance: How would The Running Fat Guy handle this run? Or, I wonder how Brian (A Runner's Blog)is doing in his race? How Did Melanie (Mel Tries to Run) handle her first 5K?, etc, etc.

Once again, today, I thought of you while on my run-- but it had nothing really to do with running or performance- I wondered what was on everyone's IPOD!!!

I have to admit, there are some pretty embarrassing songs on my IPOD. Songs I really wouldn't like the world to know. In fact-- some of the songs, if publicized to close friends and family, would bring about endless abuse and ridicule.

My favorite musician of ALL time is Dave Matthews (I do NOT hide that fact) but only 1 of his songs is in the "running folder"-- songs I play only when on a run. Since my family and friends do not subscribe to my blog (I'd like to keep it that way) I feel ok sharing my songs with all of you-- on one condition, If you share yours first. I know, pretty low of me-- but I have to make sure I don't walk the plank alone.
We can call it M.U.M.E.S.(rhymes with FUMES!)

M. my
U. ultimate
M. most
E. embarrassing
S. song

I will give you a hint-- My "Mumes"-- has a title which rhymes with MOP, it was released in 1997, and the group consists of three no longer famous brothers.. That's all I am giving you-- will release more when I hear from you :) Who will be the first and the bravest-- I have a feeling Sara will not have a problem with this one :) Extra credit to those of you who crack my mystery, good luck!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

8 Miles and Feeling GUuuey

Today I ran 8 Miles. It is, so far, the longest distance I have run in my training for the half marathon. It felt great and to tell you the truth I would have kept going but had to get ready for that work thing. If you follow my blog, I mentioned in a previous post that during my last LD I died out after 6.5 Miles. Today, I tried something different to which I credit my success:

For those who don't know, it's called GU gel. A friend of mine recommended it. I chose the espresso flavor because it is one of only a few that also has caffeine. Each packet has 100 calories all of which comes from Carbohydrates. The directions call for you to down one of these packets every 45 minutes on a run. I ran for 1Hr10Mins, and downed 1. I took the "hit" at 5 miles when I began to feel sluggish. I kept waiting for it to kick in--- I am a very impatient person when it comes to products and their promises and after 5 minutes I began to worry this thing wasn't working-- well, it was. The run felt awesome. It wasn't an instant rush but a steady and somewhat slow injection of energy. This really all could have been completely in my head but, hey-- it worked, right?

Has anyone tried these fueling products during a run? Are there other products you like? OH YEAH-- Remember my desk yesterday? here's an update:

Have a great day everyone!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Rest Day!

I kind of like the Children's book picture theme I attempted in yesterday's post-- so here is another.

Today I attempted to do this:

which means there was no:

but I did do some other things. I went to the gym, and used this:

to work on these:

Now I am at work to clean my work station-- which,

as you can see really needs the attention...

Monday, April 20, 2009

Pampering the feet and ankles

OK- As I have mentioned in past entries-- I am running A LOT more than I ever have before--so, naturally, I am noticing pains I haven't had before. This part of my body?

HURTS!-- I discovered my pair of these,

are not the best for doing this:

So I went here:

A FleetFeet salesperson performed a test and determined my ankles rolled inward when running, and my current shoes did not provide enough cushion. After several fittings-- I choose these:

The Mizuno Wave Inspire!!! Today-- was the first day with my new shoes--In Buffalo, the weather was doing this:

so I went to the gym-- and used this:

and the verdict?

The Mizuno Wave Inspire was just what the doctor, or "Fitlosopher" as they're called at FleetFeet, ordered! I know, I have only run once-- and it was on a treadmill but I am already noticing a difference. I am hoping to take these pups for a drive on pavement tommorow.

Does anyone else have these? I tried a similar Asics and Nike brand but they felt too bulky-- Does your ankle roll inward? outward? neutral? Whats the best shoe for each? Tanya is trying the Asics and was going to update us on her success-- Would love to hear from you-- Remember, I am running in a half Marathon at the end of May. I run on average of 25 miles a week-- will these last until then?

SOOOO many questions!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

5K success!!!!

Today was the 5k race in Cheektowaga, a suburb of Buffalo, and it went better than expected!!!

I had waited to register until I knew for certain what the weather was up to-- It turned out to be a wonderful morning. So, I stopped by FleetFeet and bought a new pair of running shorts, and then registered at the Feel The Spirit 5K. It was organized by a local Catholic church.

My Goal: 25:00

My finish time today: 23:18!!!!!

I pushed really hard and took no breaks. The last quarter mile nearly killed me-- but the finish line was within sight and it kept me going. I placed 62nd out of 250 and 4th in my age division. I was hoping to take home one of the beer mug trophies for placing in the top three of the 30-34 year olds but still left happy. I beat my own goal for the day and that was enough.

OK- It is Saturday, I know many of you are participating in 5k's today-- How did it go?

Friday, April 17, 2009

Friday Morning-- I am happy again!

Why??? You guessed it-- I ran today and it felt wonderful! The weather here in Buffalo was great today, sunny and in the 60's. I ran through beautiful Delaware Park, for those who don't know, it's an Olmstead park. It was designed by the same gentleman behind New York's Central Park-- Frederick Law Olmstead.

The Delaware park is the jewel of the Olmsted system, 350 acres of meadow, forest and lake. There's a great and very scenic 1.8 runners loop-- I ran around twice and it felt great. I would have done another two loops but had to get to work.

Tommorow, I am running in a 5k-- I am hoping to beat my last time of 27:31-- I am shooting for 25:00.. I will let you know how it goes.

Question: When running a 5k what do you eat the night before? 3.1 miles isn't a lot-- much less than I normally run-- so should I really carb up that much tonight???

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Thursday Troubles!

OK- this "must take a break from running" theory is really killing me. I am living up to my promise to take one day off from running per week. I chose today.

I slept in, enjoyed my morning cup of joe, read the paper (online), and took my dog on a short walk-- no running! I have read several articles which state a runner must take a day off to "recharge" thye body and allow it time to "relax"-- while it maybe true, these experts said nothing about what it does to your mood.

I have been in a funk all day. It's not due to a lack of sleep-- I slept great last night. My diet is also unchanged-- still eating healthier than ever. I had nothing to set me off-- no clashes with co-workers or family. My own un-scientific research points to not running as being the sole source of my bitterness today. I don't want to overexaggerate this-- I am not outraged, or nasty with anyone-- just not 100 percent today.

Am I alone?? Would love to know if anyone else goes through this on their day off?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Sleepy Legs plus Low Fat Chicken Alfredo....mmmmm

It's Wednesday, I am at my desk working a night shift but still thinking about two things: my run today and last night's dinner!

We'll start with the run. It was not as glorius as those in the past-- in fact one of the worst runs I've had in my short running career. Today the weather was great (sunny and 60's) I knew if I didn't go I would regret it. I took the Urban-park route (see last post for details). My legs felt very tired in the beginning, which typically happens on most runs but this time they just never kicked into gear. My mind was there-- the legs were not following. I ran 5.3 miles in 50 minutes-- which isn't that great and waaay off my goal. I realized the problem and deep down knew it the whole time. I did not take a break this week. I ran 6 miles Sunday, and 4 miles on both Monday and Tuesday-- perhaps its time for a breather--- maybe tommorow.

OK- Dinner. I have been craving chicken alfredo. The real recipe is at least 1200 calories which is not at all part of my new diet-- so I improvised and it turned out really great-- better than I expected in fact.... Recipe?? Here you go-- and I don't mess around with measuring everything out-- so improvise.

1 Cup of lowfat cottage Cheese
2 Tblspoons of Parmesean cheese
1/3 packet of lipton's Onion Soup mix
1 1/2 cups of Skim milk
a dash or two of sea salt
1tblsp of Basil

Simmer it all while pasta cooks

1breast of 98% fat free skinless TYSON Chicken Breast-- cut up and grilled.


Whole Wheat linguine (I used whole wheat penne)

Chop up some Cherry tomatoes toss it together and you've got a very good ( in my opinion) Very low fat Chicken Alfredo

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Is Anybody out there? Mapping Out Your Run!

This is day three of my blogging career-- and so far, not so good. I can't get noticed to save my life. I am my only follower-- but I am not a quitter so-- here is another post.

I ran 6.5 miles today. I took an AMAZING route. I like to change it up every few days as I get bored easily. Today, I started by mapping out a route on gmaps pedometer: if you have not used this yet-- you must start now! It allows you to zoom into a neighborhood and map out your route and gives you exact distances in miles!

I love running because it allows you to go places you normally wouldn't-- or only pass through in a car. Running helps you observe things at a better pace -- allowing you to take it all in!

My trip began outside my front door in the beautiful Colonial Circle neighborhood of Buffalo.

I traveled south towards the city, the beginning had an urban feel-- noisey traffic, lots of people, construction etc. All the action kind of pumped up my adrenaline which in the beginning of a run I need. As I begin to get into my zone things leveled off through Buffalo's trendy Allentown neighborhood, which is full of quaint shops, art galleries, and restaurants. It's veru busy at night, but somewhat quiet during the day.

I then headed north to Delaware avenue-- a truly beautiful part of the city. It is refered to as Millionaire's Row- the tree lined streets are full of gorgeous mansions. I was still able to keep a good pace, while taking in all of the wonderful architechture. I have driven past these mega-structures many times before but never truly appreciated them--

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Headache & Turkey Chili

OK-- The snow is gone, the sun is out-- things are finally looking up in my neck of the woods, except for the head that is.

Today started great. I got up at 6a.m., went to the gym, ran 3 miles on the tread and worked chest/biceps (trying to just tone up). I cam home, ate my bananna, had a cup of joe, filled the crockpot with healthy goodness, and off to work. Around 10 am it hit-- the dreaded headache and I am not sure what triggered it. I took a half day- I'm now home propped up on the couch nursing myself. I begin to feel better as the smell spreads through the air-- ahhh remember the crockpot full of healthy goodness??? Turkey Chili-- sooooo good! It's very heatlhy too! Here is the "ooooh it's so good" (for you Mr Food fans) recipe-- feel free to tweak, it's chili after alland deserves your personal touch!

1lb 99% fat free ground turkey (Wegmans, love that gorcery store!) Brown that up baby!
2 small onions chopped
1 can tomato sauce
1 can of water
2 teaspoons of liquid smoke
chili powder or season packet-- I put in two- because I am spicey!!!
1 green pepper chopped
mix it all in, turn the pot on low-- pow-- you got chili--- in just a few hours.

During my not so healthy days I would top the chili with extra sharp cheddar, the more the beddar, and lots of dallups of fattening sour cream--- now:

Fat free tomato basil feta (so good) and/or Lowfat cottage cheese--

Have a super day everyone-- for now, I'm out!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tuesday Morning Bliss-- Covered in White.

Ok-- I woke up in a great mood-- excited to gear up, go out the door, and greet the day with my morning run-- then I looked outside. It had snowed all night long..... in April!!!! Yes, I live in Buffalo NY and yes it can and does happen occasionally in the spring. I also work in the TV news biz so it wasn't a complete suprise. The meterologist had warned it was coming the night before but I truly did not believe some 2 inches of the white stuff actually stuck to the ground! I thought it would all melt away overnight but that was not the case. The sidewlks were too snow covered to run and I was concerned about injury. I was set back-- but not defeated. I settled for the gym and ran 5 miles on the treadmill!

I had taken my rest day yesterday, only my second in 4 weeks. I felt horrible. Running is an addiction and a day without it is painful in my opinion-- I just hope I am not burning myself out before the end of May and the Buffalo Marathon!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Beginning the big run

I am 33 and recently made two big life altering decisions-- to get physically fit and quit smoking. I am currently holding true to both! I have tried to accomplish these two things many times before but without much success, for some reason now I am more motivated than ever! I can thank a simple exercise for that!

I was told that once I quit smoking I would eat--- a lot! Friends who had quit years before said they replaced the cigarette with a chicken wing or a slice of pizza-- I decided to do something else to fill the void--- run! I actually started running a few weeks before quitting. The running forced me to realize how much the smoking was hurting my health. Running had become increasingly difficult-- within two days of quitting I felt amazing, running faster, and with a lot more ease. I believe this was strictly mental. Its hard to believe two days without a smoke would yield such immediate physical results-- but whatever works!

I began to run everyday. The commencement process was anything but easy. I would start off walking for 2 minutes, running for 2 minutes on and off. My first week I ran two miles per day, week 2, 3 miles-- I am now in week 4 and now an ex-smoker. I am running 4 miles per day. I have lost 12 pounds and feeling great-- almost euphoric. I truly believe running is equal to a drug, it is very addicting-- thankfully, in my opinion, more so than nicotine!

I am now training for a half marathon. It will be held May 24th in Buffalo, NY-- I've learned having a goal ahead helps keep me motivated!