Thursday, January 29, 2009

Strength Training

Since the first of the year Ive been dabbling ever so slightly with strength training. Sure i've been going to the Y off and on for the last several years working out with the machines but I decided to move over to the free weights section of the gym. I found a website through one of the guys on Kick ( Scratch ) and have been reading up on a plan they have there. The plan consists of several compound exercises that work on several muscle groups at a time. Some of the exercises include squats, deadlifts, overhead presses and a few others. You are supposed to do 5 sets of 5 of each exercise 3 days a week. I think initialy I am either going to just do it 2 days a week or cut the amount of reps or sets down. As Matt ( Scratch ) said, at our age strength training is not something to take lightly and to go at it slow and easy. Good advice I think.
Im looking foward to this new challenge and hopng to see results by spring. Plus there are a couple of other things looming in the not too distant future that Id like to look a bit different for. My 20th high school reunion is next year. Not that I want to impress anybody ( as I was a bean pole back in the day ) but it would be nice to be more fit and trim. Plus my 40th birthday is just a couple of years away. I saw a pic of actor Hugh Jackman who recently turned 40. Now granted he is an actor and has to look good ( especialy for those times he playve Wolverine in the X-Men movies ) But I was thinking why with alot of working out in the gym and eatng right couldnt I have a similar build in the next 2 years?
Could I go from this...

To this in a little over 2 years?

I guess only time will tell. I get it that Hugh has a whole lot more free time on his hands than I do to workout and such but hey its worth a shot. Not that I expect to look exactly like his build but something close would be cool right?

Monday, January 26, 2009

Here I Go Again

Yep, its about that time. Im going to try kick the Coke habit again. After getting on the scale these last few weeks and seeing the weekly gain, I need to do something. Sure not all of it is Coke but its a start. Plus Sarah told me last night she didnt think I could make it a month without drinking Coke. Its on little girl! Plus after she poked me in the gut Saturday morning and told me I was squishy and starting to look like her grandpa ( my dad ) that really got the ball rolling telling me I needed to do something about the weight Ive gained back. I dont have a game plan perse but I have an idea of what I need to do so Im going to try it.

In other news I am trying to make the transition to the Pre Dawn Patrol. While Im not running yet, I decided I wanted to start getting up with Debbie at 4 ( instead of my usual 530 or so ) and get in some kind of exercise in addition to what im doing at the Y at lunch.

Wish me luck!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

I Just Dont Get It

Yesterday on our board Trevor announced that he wouldnt be running the Boston Marathon in April. He qualified for Boston back in 07 when he ran the New Jersey Marathon. I understand that he's had some injury issues and as he said yesterday to me he isnt the same runner as he was back then and doesnt feel he deserves to run in Boston.

I beg to differ. The guy busted his ass, getting in all the required running and training. He lived and breathed running. He went out and had a great race and qualified. Ok so your not the same runner you were in 07 ( hell neither am I ) but you still earned that shot at Boston. Ive heard so many people on the board tell somebody who had qualified for Boston but isnt having a great year "just go run it as a long training run" or "just run it as a recon race and then go full tilt next year" Not that ive heard Trevor give that advice perse but others have. So why not do it? So you wont go out and PR ( not a whole lot of folks do in Boston as its a really challenging course ) just to say you qualfied for it and ran it is a huge accomplishment. Even if it doesnt turn out to be your best race

I guess I look at running differently than alot of the folks on my board. Its not life or death to me. If I dont PR at a race that I trained really well for, so be it. Yeah ill be a little discouraged but I know in my head theres another race down the road in which to PR at. As for winning, shit I know Ill never win a race nor do I have any ambition to do so. Yes we have some really fast folks on our board but the likelyhood of them winning Boston ( or any marathon ) are slim at best.

If it were me Id just say I earned this shot at Boston and Im running it. I worked too damn hard to blow it off. But thats just me. Trevor is apparently fine with his decision which is good cuz he has to live with it. I know he'll get back to form and BQ again. Its only a matter of time!

Friday, January 16, 2009

A Running Goal

Now that sounds funny coming from somebody who hasnt ran more than across a parking lot or a baseball field in more than a year. Yes next month it will be a year since I ran any kid of distance run at all.

This weekend marks the third anniversary of me finishing my first ( and thus far ) only marathon. Hard to believe that its been 3 years already. Im planning on heading down to watch the race as two of my friends are running it.

What does this have to do with the title of the blog you say?

I have set two goals for myself and I must admit they are lofty for someone who a. isnt really goal orientated 2. hasnt run in a year III doesnt know if he can successfully return to running.

Goal #1 To run next years PF Changs Rock and Roll 1/2 marathon. Whats the signifigance? Ive never run a 1/2 marathon in my home state. Ive run 3 HMs, on in CA, OH, and PA but havent ran one here yet.

Goal #2 This one requires me to achieve goal number 1 and stay healthy afterwards. Run the 2011 PF Changs Rock and Roll Full marathon ( again ) It will be the 5th anniversary of me running my first marathon. I didnt run and finish my first on my terms. Sure I finished it, got the medal and the certificate but it didnt go like I wanted it to. I had a bad case of ITBS flare up on the run and it forced me to stop running after mile 15. Its was a long 11 miles hurting as bad as I did. I know injuires can pop up at anytime but I think if I have a proper base built up and train properly theres no reason why I cant run all 26.2 miles and finish upright and smiling.

So there it is, I put it out there. Now I need to get out and buy some new running shoes and then man the fuck up and start running again. Sure its scary and yes I can get hurt and it probably will hurt when I start back up but theres only one way to find out. Get out and put one foot in front of the other.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Very Powerful

Noise Complaint at Luke AFB, AZ

Luke AFB is west of Phoenix and is rapidly being surrounded by civilization that complains about the noise from the base and its planes, forgetting that it was there long before they were.

A certain lieutenant colonel at Luke AFB deserves a big pat on the back. Apparently, an individual who lives somewhere near Luke AFB wrote the local paper complaining about a group of F-16s that disturbed his/her day at the mall.

When that individual read the response from a Luke AFB officer, it must have stung quite a bit.

The complaint: 'Question of the day for Luke Air Force Base: Whom do we thank for the morning air show? Last Wednesday, at precisely 9:11 A.M, a tight formation of four F-16 jets made a low pass over Arrowhead Mall, continuing west over Bell Road at approximately 500 feet. Imagine our good fortune! Do the Tom Cruise-wannabes feel we need this wake-up call, or were they trying to impress the cashiers at Mervyns early bird special? Any response would be appreciated.

The response: Regarding 'A wake-up call from Luke's jets' On June 15,at precisely 9:12 a.m, a perfectly timed four- ship fly by of F-16s from the 63rd Fighter Squadron at Luke Air F orce Base flew over the grave of Capt. Jeremy Fresques. Capt Fresques was an Air Force officer who was previously stationed at Luke Air Force Base and was killed in Iraq on May 30, Memorial Day. At 9 a. m. on June 15, his family and friends gathered at Sunland Memorial Park in Sun City to mourn the loss of a husband, son and friend. Based on the letter writer's recount of the fly by, and because of the jet noise, I'm sure you didn't hear the 21-gun salute, the playing of taps, or my words to the widow and parents of Capt. Fresques as I gave them their son's flag on behalf of the President of the United States and all those veterans and service men and women who understand the sacrifices they have endured. A four-ship fly by is a display of respect the Air Force gives to those who give their lives in defense of freedom. We are professional aviators and take our jobs seriously, and on June 15 what the letter writer witnessed was four officers lining up to pay their ultimate respects. The letter writer asks, 'Whom do we thank for the morning airshow? The 56th Fighter Wing will make the call for you, and forward your thanks to the widow and parents of Capt Fresques, and thank them for you, for it was in their honor that my pilots flew the most honorable formation of their lives.

Only 2 defining forces have ever offered to die for you.....Jesus Christ and the American Soldier. One died for your soul, the other for your freedom.

Lt. Col. Grant L. Rosensteel, Jr. USAF

Chokes me up just reading it.

Luke AFB is just south of me here in Surprise. There hasnt been a day in the last 4 and half years since we moved into this house that I havent seen or heard one of Luke's F-16 Falcons. It gives me a huge sense of relief knowing those guys are up there protecting my town, state and country. I cant imagine what somebody in Iraq or Afghanistan must be thinking when they hear or see those same F-16s flying over them. Something like, I sure hope they arent dropping ordinance on me or my neighborhood today comes to mind.

Next time you see an Air Force jet or an Army helicopter in the air, give them a thumbs up. Or if you are out and about and see a US service man or woman buy 'em a cup of coffee or at least shake their hand and say thanks, it means to the world to them.

Son of a ....

I cant believe the Giants, the number one seed in the NFC, choked and lost yesterday. It mightve been alright had they lost to any other team, but the friggen Eagles wtf?!

To top it off, my confident ass bet Lori and Alexis a beer on the outcome. Gee guess who gets to buy the first round when I see them in Philly next month? You guessed it, me. I shoulda learned early in the season. I bet my good friend Kris a beer on the outcome of the Monday Night Football game between her beloved Cleveland Browns and my Giants. Bzzzt nice of you to choke guys. Well at least Im buying three fine ladies a beverage. Maybe I should got back to even with Kris, I should bet her on the outcome of the Ohio State/Texas Fiesta Bol matchup. Nah Id rather buy her a beer =)

No more beer bets for this kid. I bet late in 07 on a Coyotes/Minnesota Wild game with Del Worshams team manager Bob Wilber. Same story, yet another beer ( or 12 pack in that case with the interest I owed him )

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Holiday Bowl

Recapping one of the last events I did in '08 here. Ive been a fan of the University of Oregon football team for many years now. Chris "Duckgeek" Butler from Kick took notice of the fact after seeing a pic of me running a marathon with a Ducks hat on. Chris is a staff member at Oreogn. When it was announced that the Ducks would be playing in the Holiday Bowl, Chirs contacted me and asked if I would be interested in attending the game as his guest. Damn straight I would! The game is played in San Diego which while drving 85 mph of the way, its only 5 hours away =) How could I pass this opportunity up. Free tix to the game, alumni association tailgate party and split the cost of a room 4 ways. Count me in.

Welcome to Californina

The game was on Tuesday night, December 30th. I dropped the kids off that morning at school/daycare and hightailed it to SD. I got over there around 1 pm so I had some time to kill prior to meeting Chris, Ben and Vicky at the hotel at 3. I had planned on touring the USS Midway but the traffic to get into it was way too long so I opted to hit the deli across the street from the Midway for a sammich. While relaxing at a table doing some people watching and enjoying the view of the basy, I had a nice lon conversation with a triathelete who happend to be finishing up a long bike ride and was haivng a snack at the table next to me.
The USS Midway

The people know a good thing

Entrance to Qualcomm Stadium

I then proceeded to head to the hotel and meet Chris for the first time. Like a lot of my "imaginary" friends while I "talk" to Chris most everyday, this was my first chance to meet him in person. After a quick round of intros and changing into an Oregon shirt and hat, we headed over to Qualcomm Stadium ( but not before harassing several OSU fnas ) We made our way to the tailgate party and met up with a lot of folks Chris, Ben and Vicky knew. After a so-so 6 dollar beer ( Pyramid Heffenweizen ) some pictures and small talk, we made our way into the stadium for the opening ceremomies.
Me and Chris at the tailgate party

JUst a few minutes after we got there, Marines and Navy sailors unfurled the largest American flag I had ever seen. The flag covered the football field from end zone to end zone and from sideline to sideline. This thing was huge. It definatley gave you the chills and a warm and fuzzy feeling about being an American all at the same time.
Our view

I told you that flag was huge ( come to find out the same flag was used here in Arizona for the Fiest Bowl just a few days later )

Kick off commenced soon after and the game was underway. The first half wasnt too good to teh Ducks. They just couldnt seem to contianin the Oklahoma State offense adn at the half it was 17-7 in favor of the OSU Cowboys. The halftime entertainment was both university bands playing Journey songs plus a awesome fireworks display. Well one of the songs that was played was Journey's Dont Stop Believin' I dont know if the Ducks heard it or what because when the 2nd half started they came out of the locker room a different team. The game was really exciting with some lead changes in the 2nd half and a lot of Oregon offense. In the end the Ducks won in convincing fashion. What a great game. The energy and emotion from the fans was just something I had never witnessed before. I cant imagine what the energy is like for the Civil War ( Oregon vs Oregon State ) the Territory Cup ( ASU vs UofA ) or a heated rivalry like Ohio State vs Michigan. Id love to find out someday.
This wasnt using a zoom, this is how close Chris and I were to the fireworks display while we were out on the concourse at half time. They were LOUD!

End of the game celebration of the players, coaches and the band

After the game the line for the trolley was just way backed up so we opted to walk back ( in the fog ) a mile or so back to the hotel room . It was good for me to stretch out as I was in the car over 5 hours and then sat at the game for 3 or so. We got back to the room and then Chirs and Vicky took a buddy of theirs to his hotel and Ben and I got some Wendys for a late dinner.

The next morning we hit Dennys for breakfast and then bid our farewells. Chris and company were headed back to Long Beach were they had flown into from Eugene and I had to hit my favorite beach in San Diego for a bit prior to heading home. We didnt make it over to Mission Beach asa family in the summer of 08. We had gone the two summers prior but never made it over to SD this past summer =(
A vacant Mission Beach

Gotta have the boBcam picture of myself at Mission Beach

As I expected there werent a whole lot of folks on the bach. Lot of runners, bikers and walkers on the path and a few surfers in full wetsuits catching some waves but thats about it. I waded ankel deep into the chilly Pacific Ocean, took some pics and then haeded for AZ. I had a Phoenix Coyotes hockey game with front row glass seats to make it to by 6 pm. Thats a story for another day.
Weclome back home

Friday, January 02, 2009

A New Year, A New Look...for now

Seeing as how we are entering a new year, I thought i'd try out a new look to the blog. Ive had it in my mind for quite some time that I felt it needed a change. Not quite sure I like the new look but who knows it may grow on me. Feel free to chime in on what you think. The background pic was taken New Years Eve at my favorite beach in Californina, Mission Beach in San Diego.