Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Ready to Go

I ran laps this afternoon to rest up for the marathon tomorrow. Gotta get up at 0-dark thirty, as we use to say in the Army. For me, that's almost as hard as running the marathon.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Counting Down

It's almost marathon time in Kingwood! No late night partying for me tomorrow night. Norman and I will drive down for the marathon early Thursday morning. I am looking forward to it being over with. For me, marathons are never easy. I hope the weather is okay. Right now, the forecast is a high of 62 degrees, with a 30% chance of rain. I received an email tonight from the race director for the Surfside Beach Marathon on February 14 (my next). The beach is in good shape, but the building at Stahlman Park that they used for the race headquarters was fatally damaged by Ike. They are considering moving the start/finish to a place west of the 80-foot bridge to Surfside Beach. That means that you would run over the bridge at the start and finish. If they do that, they can no longer claim to be the only marathon in the U.S. run entirely on the beach. I met up with the group this evening at ran 1.6 miles up and down the hills in the Avenues and then ran 1 mile on the track.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Empty Streets

My inclination was to go run trails this afternoon, until I remembered that the park is closed for Bambi killing. So, I ran a 2.7 mile loop around town this evening. The streets are relatively empty, which makes it nice.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Six Years in Wylie

I just got home from visiting family in Wylie (northeast of Dallas). While there, I completed 6 years on my streak and started on number 7 today. Only three more days until the Texas Marathon on January 1. I don't look forward to the all-concrete course, but few things in life are easy.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas in the Park

I went out to the park this afternoon and ran the 6.8 mile outer loop. I passed four hikers and saw two bikers in the first mile, but only one armadillo after that. The trails are in good shape, but it was rather warm for late December.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

I had family visiting most of the day, but I did get in a 4-mile run on the streets this morning. I had intended to do more, but got started late and then ran out of time. Merry Christmas to everyone.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Avenue Hills

I met up with Hans and Chris this evening and we ran the hills in the Avenues. I am not sure what they ran, but I did 2.5 miles. With SHSU on Christmas break, the traffic was relatively light. After the run, I went to Nautilus and there were not too many people there either.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Daily Decision

As a streaker, I have to make a decision everyday of when, where and how far to run. I was on the machines at Nautilus this afternoon trying to make that decision. I really don't like to run, so matter what I decide, I won't enjoy the run. I do it for health. Generally, the options are the treadmill at Nautilus, the track, trails at the park or somewhere on the roads in town. Of course, races help break up the training run routine. I did a personal record of 39 this year. I am amazed by Robert Raven Kraft of South Miami Beach, FL. He is fellow member of the United States Running Streak Association and has run the same 8-mile course on the beach at the same time of the day for over 33 years. I don't see how he does it. He has really become a prisoner of his routine. He told me on the phone that he once had a girlfriend, but she wanted him to take her out of state for something. All this, and he is number 11 on the national streak list. Anyway, since I ran 15 miles yesterday, I ran 2 miles around town today. The Texas Marathon in Kingwood is in 10 days, so I am going to take it easy between now and then. Curtis Barton was on the waiting list to register for the Texas Marathon and got word today that he is in. Other Seven Hills Running Club members running are Jon Walk and Norman Langwell.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Ideal Trail Running Weather

Low 40's and windy. I felt very comfortable in shorts, long-sleeve shirt, gloves and a sweat band over my ears. I went to the park this morning and ran 15 miles.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


I had to go to a wedding in College Station at 4 p.m. today, so I ran laps at the track in the light rain.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Inside Loop

I ran the 6.9 mile inside loop at the park this afternoon. It was so warm that I expected to see snakes.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

3.5 on the Trails

I went out to the park this afternoon and ran a 3.5 mile loop. No trips, falls or sprained ankles. The park has been closed for the last day and a half for squirrel hunting. Ironically, the only animal I saw during my run was a squirrel. Lucky guy.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Road Run

I ran 4.7 miles on the roads this afternoon and then went to Nautilus. The annual Christmas party was in progress (snack spread) and I signed up for a door prize when I got there. A few minutes later, they paged me and told me that I won a door prize. A Nautilus T-shirt - just what I needed. I gave it to a friend before I left.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Cold and Wet - Good Running Weather

I intended to run the roads this afternoon, but I had to stay home and wait for a phone call until 5 p.m. By that time, it was getting dark. So, I went to the track and ran one mile by myself, then a mile with Norman and Curtis and then another mile with Norman. I am running the Texas Marathon in Kingwood on January 1, so I will need to get in a long run this weekend. The race director, Steve Boone, told me that the finisher medals weigh over 2 pounds. I may need someone to help me carry mine to the car.

Monday, December 15, 2008

I Got Reprimanded

I was out running the roads this afternoon. It was in the high 30's and I was comfortable and working up a sweat. An elderly lady crossed the street and stopped me. She started chewing me out for running in the cold. She started feeling my cheeks (the ones on my face) and confirmed that it was too cold to be out running. It reminded me of a very hot summer afternoon several years ago when I got stopped by an elderly lady and reprimanded for running in the heat. I assured her that I was okay and then she said, "I hope you find Jesus, so he will teach you not to run in the heat." Now, I am wondering if it was the same lady. Anyway, I avoided hypothermia today and got in 2.6 miles.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Day Off

My ankle felt better today, but I needed a day off. I went to the track this afternoon and ran laps. Texans and Cowboys won!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

400 Done

I taped up my ankle this morning and headed for the Willis Wildkat 5K. It was painful for the first mile, but after that it was not bad. I finished in 33:57 and was first in my age group (yes, I was the only one in the age group). Jon Walk and True Cousins from the Seven Hills Running Club were there, as well as many other friends. This was my 400th race. Number 1 was in the Spring of 1983, when I was 42.
After getting home, showering and retaping my ankle, I headed for Livingston for their Jingle Bell 5K, which started at 1 p.m. Jon Walk was also there, along with Don Ortloff and Jan Parks (Jan's first race since her foot surgery). I finished in 34:15.
Tonight, Ben and I went to the Sam basketball game against Jarvis Christian College in Hawkins, Texas. Sam won.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Darn Ankle Sprain

I went out to the park this afternoon to run the roads. The trails looked too inviting, so I decided to run Marisa's Course (3.5 miles). I got about a mile out and my left foot went into a hole, causing an ankle sprain. Even though it hurt, I kept on running and cut my course to about two and a half miles. I came home and iced it. There is not much swelling, but it is sore when I walk on it. My plan was to run the Willis 5K at 8 a.m. tomorrow and the Livingston 5K at 1 p.m. The injury is not a streak breaker and I plan on being in Willis. I'll have to decide then as to whether to run the 5K. If it seems to be too much, I'll run a mile at the track tomorrow evening.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Waterway Jingle Bell Run

I went down to The Woodlands tonight for the Waterway Jingle Bell Run, sponsored by WoodlandsFit. This is a 3.5 mile non-competitive run along the waterway behind The Woodlands Mall. It started and finished at Lukes Locker. The course is well-lit with waterway lights and Christmas trees. Very scenic. They had a larger crowd this year, probably a 100. I finished in about 41 minutes. Other SHRC club members running were Karen Felicidario, Colleen, James and Crystal Spencer and Norman, Millie, Colton and Deanna Langwell. I visited with many friends from that area and several runners who had run Sunmart last Saturday.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Snow Day

Marilynn, Ben and I spent all day in Houston at Kenny's new house. He bought a repo off of FM 1960 West and it needs a lot of fixing up. We puddy'd, sanded and painted all day. It was aftert 8 p.m. when he left his place, ate at Jason's Deli and then drove back to Huntsville in the snow. It was especially heavy down on 1960. It was nearly 10 p.m. when we got back home. I went to the track and ran laps. No big deal with the snow, but the track was muddy. There were several college students playing in the snow on the field. I also noticed a number of people outside taking photos of their house, with the 1/2 inch or so accumulation in the yard. We have been in Huntsville since over 23 years and it is the most snow since then.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Hill Run

A group of us met at the track tonight to run the hills in the Avenues. I ended up modifying the latter part of the course for myself and running alone. I did 3.2 miles. Nice and cool weather after heavy rains this afternoon. Then, after dinner, Ben and I went to the Sam Houston basketball game with Texas College (Sam won).

Monday, December 8, 2008

Run Around Town

I spent most of the day in Conroe and The Woodlands trying to finish my Christmas shopping. After Nautilus this evening, I drove to the track and then ran the streets around town. I passed by the downtown square and then through the campus, where I ran into Andrew and Karen Husband, who I had not seen in a while. We visited for a few minutes. Of course, they have been busy with finals. It's been a while, but I think they come around in December. My run ended up being 2.7 miles.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Resting Up

I was really sore this morning when I got out of bed. I had Aleeve for breakfast and felt better this afternoon. In between football games, I went to the track and ran laps. The first lap was tough, but after that it was okay. I could have done a few miles, but I know that I have to rest.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Sunmart 50K Report

I was disappointed with my run at the Sunmart 50K this morning. I thought with two recent marathons under my belt and ideal weather, I would do well. I finished in 8:39:32, my worst of 13 straight Sunmart 50K's. During the first 12 mile+ loop, my knees began to burn. Debbie Tripp gave me a couple Tylenols and that helped for most of the second loop (Thanks, Debbie). I walked very little during the race, but my knees held me to a very slow running pace. I did take a hard fall on the first 12 mile+ loop, but that was the only one. I had run the Hogs Hunt 50K last Spring in 7:47:36, so I was certainly hoping to get in under 8 hours. Thanks to SHRC members, Jon Walk, Bill Dwyer, Adrienne Langelier, Marilynn and my son, Ben, and Curtis Barton and his good looking girl friend for being in the finish area and supporting the runners. Rather than an afghan or Tyvec jacket, finishers this year got a nice black jacket with a hood, plus the normal finishers medal. When I got home, I took a long hot shower and then iced my knees and drank cold beer. I feel better.
My Sunmart 50K history:
1996 6:54:00
1997 7:06:55
1998 6:40:16
1999 6:33:25 (PR)
2000 6:59:28
2001 7:20:07
2002 7:22:09
2003 7:16:46
2004 7:54:49
2005 8:22:12
2006 8:17:42
2007 8:33:55
2008 8:39:32

Friday, December 5, 2008

Restful Friday

With Sunmart tomorrow, I went to the track this morning and ran laps. Marilynn and I left at 3 p.m. to go down to the pre-race dinner at the Sheradon at Bush Airport. Norman Langwell rode down with us. Other Seven Hills Running Club members who we visited with were J. C. Guzman, Jon Walk, Bill Dwyer, Robert Duncan and John and Julie Loftus. Of course, we ran into a lot of other friends, including Ken Reed and Steve and Paula Boone.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Closing in on Sunmart

Sunmart is just a couple days away. The trails are in good shape and the weather is suppose to be dry and cold. What more could you ask for? I remember one year the course was in such bad shape, that you were frequently running through water and mud up over your socks. I slipped once and slid down a hill in the black mud on my back. Then, last year it was so hot. I need to do at least two more Sunmarts. The first year I ran the race, they gave the finishers a leather running bag. The next year, I took the jacket. Next, the afghan. For my next nine, I opted for the afghan. I gave one to each of my six kids and three to my grand kids. I have two more grand kids.
After Nautilus this evening, I went over to the track and ran laps. Norman stopped by after I finished. We visited for a while and solved a lot of world problems.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

No More Ramp Romps

I found out this evening that one of my favorite races has been cancelled, maybe for good. The Ramp Romp 5K is held at Kyle Field in College Station every February. You start on the track, run a mile around the campus, come back to Kyle Field and run up and down all three sets of ramps and then finish on the track. I have run the race 8 times, including the last 6. From what I was told by Rec Sports at Texas A&M, the race was not drawing enough students. Well, darn.
I went back to the park this afternoon and ran 3 miles, some on the roads and some on the tracks. Except for all the construction in the start/finish area for Sunmart on Saturday, the park was relatively quiet.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Transformation of the Park

I went out to the park this evening and ran two miles on the road. Curtis and Phillip showed up about the same time to run trails. My course took me down to the lodge area. There is major construction underway for the Sunmart Texas Trail Endurance Run this Saturday. They were building the frame for the kitchen and they had already built the huge archway for the finish line. A guy was there from Aggieland delivering maroon portapotties. Adrienne may spend extra time in those. I hope she does not miss the race start.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Back to the Track

I ran laps at the track this evening. Josh Holden was also running and we visited for a few minutes.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Careful Park Run

Norman and I met up at the park this afternoon to run trails. I was extra careful not to trip and repull my hamstring with Sunmart next Saturday and four marathons in the three months. I made it around the 6.8 mile outer loop with no falls or trips. Whew! Norman did an extra 1.3 miles for good measure. We ran into Robert Duncan on the trails, acting like one of those wimpy bikers.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Leftover Turkey 10K

I ran the Seven Hills Running Club's Leftover Turkey 10K this morning in Huntsville. It is a tough course, out and back on Veterans Memorial Parkway, nothing but up and down hills. I finished in 1:14:23, slower than I run on a flat 10K course. We had 25 runners and walkers doing the 10K, 5K or 1-mile race. Ben Harvie (62) and Robert Duncan (48) ran the 10K together and both finished in 47:58. Ben came back and met me at the 5 mile mark and ran in with me.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Feeling Better

I felt better today, even though I am still congested. No fever tonight, though. I ran an easy 3 miles (not that I don't run any other way) at the park this afternoon. There were a few hikers on the trails and one armadillo, but I did not see any other runners.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Run Thru The Woods 5 Miler

I didn't get much sleep last night and I got up early to go down to The Woodlands for the Run Thru the Woods 5 Miler. I don't know how many runners they had, but it seemed to be over 2,000 and the largest crowd I've seen at the race. It was warm and humid, but the course is very flat, except for the overpass over I-45. My time was 58:47. My history in this race is below. Met with many friends and several SHRC members at the race. Club members were Sara Lange, James, Josh and Crystal Spencer, Karen Felicidario and Robert Duncan. Jon Walk was there as the race announcer and he did a good job, I suppose. Since I was running the course, all I know is that he remembered my name as I crossed the finish line. We had family over for Thanksgiving this afternoon and evening and all is quiet for now. My fever is back up, but I get to sleep in tomorrow.
Run Thru The Woods
2002 - 51:10
2003 - 54:03
2004 - 53:14
2005 - 57:28
2006 - 58:56
2007 - 56:12
2008 - 58:47

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Darn Fever

I felt lousy all day and am running a fever tonight. Usually, I get a sinus infection every two years and now this is my second this year. I went over to the track this evening and walked a mile with a friend and then ran a mile. Gotta get up early tomorrow for the 5-miler in the Woodlands. Ugh.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


I am not sure what it is blowing around this time of year, but my sinuses are killing me. I felt ill and sleepy all day. I skipped going to Nautilus this evening and went out to the State Park to run the roads. It was relatively quiet out there this evening. There was no wind and the lake water was glassy still. You could see the reflection of the colorful trees on shoreline in the water and it was quite picturesque. I should have brought my camera. In any case, I ran 3 miles. The cool air seemed to open up my sinuses and I felt a little better. Ben and I went to the Sam basketball game with Western Michigan (Sam lost).

Monday, November 24, 2008

Two on the Road

After 12.5 on the trails yesterday, I did 2 miles on the road in town this afternoon. I suppose it's part of my tapering plan for the Sunmart 50K on December 6. I'll figure out the rest of it before then.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Warm on the Trails

For late November, it was rather warm on the trails at the park this afternoon. I met up with Megan Williams from the SHRC and Even Stein and James and Rochelle Cabe from Houston at 1 p.m. We ran 12.5 miles, starting and finishing at the lodge. I was surprized that we did not see any wildlife. I guess it was too warm, even for the armadillos. Evan, James and Rochelle are running Sunmart in a couple weeks and this was their first trail run at the park. We had a good run and nice visit.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Cannonball 5K

I ran the Cannonball 5K on the Texas A&M campus this morning. It didn't start until 9:30 - my kind of race. Finished in 31:30, which was my best 5K time in two years. I guess the secret is to run a marathon to train for a 5K. Is that right, Coach Bill? It was a nice race, about 100 runners, flat course, longsleeve T-shirt and lots of door prizes. The male and female winners won a GPS and the age group winners got watches. They only went one deep in the 40 and over category, but I won a minor door prize. I came back to Huntsville to shower and change clothes and then went back to College Station with Marilynn for a wedding shower.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Nothing to Blog

If I was not so consistent in blogging everyday I'm not out of town, I would not blog today. I only ran one mile at the track this evening. It's Friday, you know.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

At The Park

After Nautilus, I met up with the group at the park this evening. Hans and I ran 3 miles on the park roads and Phillip and Curtis did something longer on the trails. After that, Marilynn, Ben and I went to the Sam Houston State basketball game against North Texas. It was a close game, but Sam lost.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Back to Normal

I think I'm back to normal after the marathon on Sunday. Now, I just have my regular sore and stiff knees. I worked out at Nautilus this afternoon and then ran 3.4 miles on the roads in town.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Hill Work

After working out at Nautilus this afternoon, I met up with Lavonne, Hans, Chris and Jason Martinez at the track. From there, we ran a 1.5 mile course through the avenues with the steepest hills in Huntsville. Lavonne, Hans and Jason ran the course a second time. Since I am in the last day of my recovery from the marathon on Sunday, I stayed back and walked laps with a friend at the track.

Monday, November 17, 2008

5K, Marathon & Laps

Marilynn and I got back from San Antonio this evening. I ran the Kats for the Cause 5K in Huntsville Saturday morning and finished in 32:33. We then drove to San Antonio for the Inaugural Rock 'n' Roll San Antonio Marathon on Sunday. We visited some old Army friends, Jim and Diana Webb, who live in Cibolo, on the north side of San Antonio. They had us over for a very nice dinner and visit. Even though we have stayed in touch over the years, it has been too long since we have visited. Hopefully, we can get together more often. The logistics of the marathon with 30,000 runners was what I expected - a big hassle. By the time I got to the start line Sunday morning, I had already walked for miles and climbed so many steps. We got caught up in traffic in downtown San Antonio Saturday afternoon getting to the Expo in the Alamo Dome. I ended up parking on an upper floor of a parking garage and we walked a long way to the dome. It was wall to wall runners, but I managed to get my packet and visit with some friends, Jon Walk, Bill Dwyer, Debbie Tripp, Loren Sheffer and others. We got up at 5 a.m. Sunday and drove to the AT&T Center at 6 a.m. to get shuttle busses. I had a long walk to the bus there. I got on a bus to the start line in Breckenridge park, but they let us out blocks from the start line. Marilynn waited at the AT&T Center and caught a bus for the finish line (Alamo Dome) at 8 a.m. With all the walking and climbing stairs, I was tired at the start line. They started in waves of about 1,000 runners each, starting at 7:30 a.m. I was in the 24th waive, so it was nearly 8:30 before I started the race. The temperature was in the 40's at the start, but it warmed up quickly. At 2 miles, I threw away the headband over my ears and my gloves. Later, I wished that I had run in a short sleeve shirt, rather than long sleeve. I ran in a crowd for the whole 26.2 miles. The aid stations were great, there was a rock 'n' roll band every mile and plenty of high school cheerleaders along the way. The course was relatively flat. I finished in 5:48:07 (compared to 6:03:52 in Waco last month). I was okay with that. Marilynn and I stayed over in San Antonio Sunday night and drove back this afternoon. We stopped in Houston to visit Kenny and got home about 6:30 p.m. Later, I went to the track and ran a mile. As usual the day after a marathon, the first lap was bad, but after that it was okay.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Laps at the Track

Friday seems to be my normal day off and today was no exception. I ran laps at the track early this afternoon. I plan on doing the 5K race on campus tomorrow morning and then heading for San Antonio for the marathon on Sunday.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Park Run

I met the group at the park this evening and I did 2 miles on the park roads while they ran trails. When I did the outer loop on Tuesday, I stubbed my right toe on a root. Even though I did not fall, I felt a pull in my left hamstring (the one I have been trying to recover from). It has been sore since and I thought I should stay off the trails for a while longer. Running the quiet roads at the park isn't all that bad, anyway. We had a good group this evening, Hans, Chris, John, Ron Davis, Phillip and Curtis. Felix Montelongo had finished a run alone and he visited with us a while.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I must be getting old

I ran a 2.4 mile course around the Avenues this evening. There were two church missionaries walking up the street, wearing their white shirts, ties and backpacks. As I ran past them, I jokingly said, "Yall, should be running." They were very polite and friendly and after I passed, I heard one said to the other, "I wish my grandpa would do that."

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Wet Trails

Lavonne, Norman and I ran the 6.8-mile outer loop at the park this morning. It was rather warm and very humid. I'm glad I carried water. We did not run into any critters on the trails, except for three other runners, including Curtis. With about a mile and a half to go, it started raining hard. I was drenched in sweat, so the rain felt good. Thanks, Lavonne and Norman.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Road Run

In anticipation of doing the outer loop at the park tomorrow morning with Lavonne, I did 2 miles on the roads in Huntsville. After that, I'll cool it until the San Antonio Marathon this weekend. I am apprehensive. Not about the marathon, but all the logistics involved. If I had known the race would have 30,000 people, I would have never signed up. I have learned to appreciate small marathons, where I can park near the start/finish and not have to run in a crowd.

Sunday, November 9, 2008


While I felt fine today after running the Rocky Raccoon 25K yesterday, I rested. That means I ran laps at the track. I spent hours today working on a photo gallery for last month's Huntsville Half Marathon & 5K Run/Walk. Click here for a link.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Rocky Raccoon

The Rocky Raccoon 25K is one of those races I do every year, for 8 years straight, anyway. Here are my times:
1998 - 3:01:17
1999 - 2:59:47
2001 - 3:04:18
2002 - 3:25:20 (age 61, start of bad knees)
2003 - 3:27:10
2004 - 3:34:49
2005 - 3:44:42
2006 - 3:52:40
2007 - 3:36:42
2008 - 3:43:18
The weather this morning was ideal for trail running. It was good to see so many other club members running. Since the 50K started at 7 a.m. and the 25K at 8 a.m., I never got to see everybody. However, I think this is a complete list.
Norman Langwell
Phillip Clark
Gerald Peters
J. C. Guzman
Holden Choi
Jon Walk
John Loftus
Andrew Husband
Karen Husband
Felix Montelongo
Ken Johnson

Thanks to those club members who got up real early and operated the Seven Hills Running Club aid station in the back of the park: Marilynn Johnson, Jan Parks, Ron and Mary Ann Davis and Millie and Deanna Langwell. They did a great job.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Twas the Night Before Rocky Raccoon

The Rocky Raccoon 25K is tomorrow morning and I guess I am ready. I ran laps at the track this morning and Norman and I went out to the park this evening to set up the club aid station in the back of the park. I went to the Huntsville Hornet football game in Willis tonight. It was the first Hornet game I've been to in several years. I sat with Norman and his family. Norman's son, Colton, played well tonight. I left early in the 4th quarter to beat the traffic and listened to the rest of the game on the radio. On the way home, they called Colton's name at least 8 times. Congratulations to the Hornets. They went undefeated in district and start the playoffs next week.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

One More Day Before the Trails

I have one more day before I hit the trails for the first time in a couple months. The Rocky Raccoon 25K & 50K is this Saturday. The club is operating the "far side aid station" for the race. Norman and I are setting it up tomorrow evening and Marilynn, Millie Langwell, Jan Parks and Ron and Mary Ann Davis are operating the station on Saturday. Assuming my hamstrings survive Rocky Raccoon, Lavonne and I are doing a long run at the park on Tuesday morning. Then, it is rest time for the San Antonio Marathon the next Saturday.
I went to the track just before dark this evening. Kathy Cook was there and we walked for a mile and then I ran for a mile. Mairlynn and I took Ben out to dinner tonight to celebrate his 25th birthday, which was actually November 3.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Got my Gaiters

Maybe it is the way I run, but when on the trails, I accumulate a lot of trash in my shoes. During the Seabrook Trail (crushed gravel) Marathon last spring, I had to stop and empty my shoes about five times. All the stopping probably cost me a trophy. So, I ordered some gaiters online and received them this week. I'll probably wear them for the first time at the Sunmart 50K next month. In case you don't know what gaiters are, they are cloth thingies that fit around with ankle and over the top of the shoes. The elastic around the ankles keeps the trash from getting into the shoe. They come in some pretty wild colors, but I bought the more conservative camoflauge blue.
I went to the track this evening and took off running the roads from there. I ran some streets that I had never run before and got attacked by a couple small dogs. One got very close to my ankle, but then I got very aggressive and scared him off. Anyway, I check the distance of my run on USATF's America's Running Routes and it came out to be 2.0 miles.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Mid-Afternoon Run

I went to Nautilus at mid-afternoon, worked out and then ran 3.5 miles around town. There were not too many people at Nautilus, but the streets were busy for my run.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Adjusting to the Time Change

I ran out of daylight this evening and ran only 2 miles on the streets in Huntsville. I need to get a longer run in early this week and then taper for the Rocky Raccoon 25K on Saturday. I am looking forward to getting on the trails again after two months of road work.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Fallen Runner

Marilynn and I went up to Dallas Friday morning and got back this evening. After I got home, I soon learned that my good friend, John Burick, was struck and killed by a vehicle while running the roads in Huntsville on Friday morning. I am deeply saddened. We were neighbors for many years and attended the same church. And, he was a member of the Seven Hills Running Club for many years. He was one of the nicest guys you would ever want to meet. John, 75, was a veteran of many marathons. He ran the Huntsville 5K on October 11 (won 1st place in his age group). Last Saturday, John and several other club members ran the Shiitake Mushroom Festival 5K in Madisonville. He passed me and ended up winning the 70 and over age group. I will miss him. My condolences to Rosalie and to the rest of his family.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Planned Races

I met Chris and John at the park this evening. I ran two miles on the roads, while they did about the same on the trails. Phillip was already there and he had done a longer run. Here is my race plan for the next few months. I'll probably add some others, but these are for sure.

November 8 - Rocky Raccoon 25K
November 15 - Kats for the Cause 5K, Huntsville
November 16 - San Antonio Marathon
November 22 - Cannonball Run 5K, College Station
November 27 - Run the Woods 5 Miler, The Woodlands
November 29 - Leftover Turkey 10K, Huntsville
December 6 - Sunmart 50K
December 13 - Willis Wildkat 5K (400th race)
December 13 - Jingle Bell 5K, Livingston
January 1 - Texas Marathon, Kingwood
February 14 - Surfside Beach Marathon
Late February - Ramp Romp 5K, College Station
March 7-8 - Texas Independence Relay
March 14 - Seabrook Marathon
March 29 - Bataan Death March Memorial Marathon - New Mexico

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Can't Beat the Weather

Great weather for running today. I went to Nautilus this evening and then on to the park for a 2 mile run on the roads. I was tempted to slip over to the trails, but I'll save it for Rocky Raccoon on November 8.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Voted Today

I voted today and I hope everyone else is smart as I am and vote the same way. I worked out at Nautilus this evening and then ran my 2.7 mile loop around town. Then, Marilynn and I went out to dinner tonight to commemorate a marriage streak of 41 years.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Lazy Day

Besides mowing my yard (on my riding lawn mower), I didn't do much today. This evening, I went to Nautilus and then ran laps at the track. I had no blisters from the marathon yesterday, so I felt fine. Back to the roads tomorrow.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Replacement Marathon

Since I wimped out and did not make it to the M2M last Saturday, I did the Miracle Match Marathon today in Waco. It is billed as the toughest marathon in Texas. The temperature was fairly cool for the first half and the hills were not so bad. Then, the hills strike and the temperature got into the 80's. These are really steep and some of the downhills were so steep there was no way to run down. It was up and down from about mile 14 to 24. I did the first half in 2:47, so I had ideas of finishing well under 6 hours. It didn't work out that way. I finished in 6:03:52, which was good enough for first place in my age group, hence two medals. My hamstring never bothered me during the race and I did not get the sharp pains in my right knee that knocked me out of the M2M. I had just the usual sore and stiff knees. I ran into fellow SHRC member, John Slate, at the start line. He ended up 2nd in his age group.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Shiitake 5K

Ben and I went up to Madisonville this morning to run the Shiitake Mushroom Festival 5K. Nice morning for running. I ran a 33:26. Several other Seven Hills Running Club members were there, Sara Seale, John Burick, Robert Duncan and Jerry Flanagan. Sara and Robert were the overall winners. They changed the course this year. Rather than an out and back on the roads, it was a single loop and most of it was on a dirt road through the woods.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Tapering for a 5K

I'm running the Shiitake Mushroom 5K in Madisonville tomorrow morning, so I ran a mile at the track this afternoon. The weather should be nice.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Club Meeting

I went to Nautilus and ran earlier than usual today, because of the Seven Hills Running Club meeting at the Junction Restaurant this evening. I did my 2.7 mile loop around town. Because of the cooler temperature and low humidity, I wanted to keep running. However, I had to get home, shower and then get to the meeting. We had a smaller than usual crowd at the meeting, but there was no shortage of quality people. News from the meeting is on the Latest News page of the club web site.

Back to the Park

I met Phillip, Hans and Chris at the park this evening (Wednesday). While they did their usual 4.5 mile trail run, I did 3 on the roads. SHRC member, Keelie Hughes, was biking on the road and I stopped and visited with her a few minutes. My plan is not to step foot on the trails again until the Rocky Raccoon 25K on November 8. This will be my 8th straight Rocky Raccoon 25K, so I will risk my hamstring for that. In any case, it will be a good training run for the San Antonio Marathon the next weekend. Marilynn and I are looking forward to a weekend in San Antonio. She lived at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio as a kid, when her dad, an Army colonel, was stationed there. I was also stationed at Fort Sam Houston as an Army private in 1961. San Antonio has always been one of our favorite places to visit.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


The 10 x 12 storage building is finally finished. Tours available upon request.
I went to Nautilus this evening, but I was relunctant to work my knees. That was probably what caused my problem last week. My knee hurt less today and the antibiotics are working on my sore throat, so I feel somewhat better. I increased my running distance to 3 miles this evening.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Easing Back In

I was lucky and got an appointment with the doc this morning. He put me on decongestants and antibiotics. My knee seemed to be feeling better, so I did make an issue of that problem. I went to the track this evening and then ran 2 miles on the road from there. So far, no problem. I'll do more tomorrow.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Another Day Recovering

My knee felt better today, but I kept my run to a mile at the track this afternoon. My sinus problem also felt better today, but my fever did return tonight. Maybe I can see my doc tomorrow and get some antibiotics. I'm tired of laying around.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Idle Saturday

I kept thinking about M2M this morning and wishing I was there. Congratulations to Hans and Jon, who both finished. I had a fever all day from the sinus problem. It is in my throat and it is hard to talk or swallow. I ran laps at the track this afternoon and iced my knee tonight. I'm sure it will get better in a few days.

Friday, October 17, 2008

No M2M

I went to the track just after midnight last night to get in my Friday run. I felt a sharp pain in my knee a couple times, but it was tolerable. When I got home, I iced it and told Marilynn that we were good to go early this morning. I went to bed, but was awake most of the night with trobbing pain under my right knee cap. I took some Tylenol about 4 a.m. and was able to sleep a few hours. Then the pain woke me up again. There is no way I can do the Marathon 2 Marathon tomorrow. I was really looking forward to the experience. And, I have no idea what I did to cause the knee problem. Now, my challenge is to keep the streak going. Good luck to Hans and Jon at M2M.

Thursday, October 16, 2008


A couple days ago, my allergies started acting up and my throat is sore and my sinuses stopped up. I get it every year and have learned to live (and run) with it. This evening, I went to Nautilus and did my normal workout and then went to run a mile at the track. After the run, I started getting sharp pains in my right knee (besides the normal pain in both knees). I have been icing it and wondering what the heck I did. I am suppose to leave early tomorrow morning for an all day drive to Alpine for the marathon. Now, I don't know. My thinking now is to go get my Friday run in after midnight tonight and then see what happens to the sharp pain in my right knee. I would sure hate to drive all the way to Alpine, start the marathon and then have to DNF. So, if I don't blog tomorrow, that means I went to Alpine.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Two at the Park

The group met at the park this evening. It was Hans, Phillip, Curtis, Marisa, Chris, Josh and I. We got started late, so they all did 3 miles on the trails and I did 2 miles. There was a light rain that tapered off during the run. The weather is looking good in west Texas for the Saturday marathon.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Tapering for Saturday

I went to Nautilus this evening and then did my 2.7 mile course in town. Since I have the Marathon to Marathon this Saturday, I will do about the same tomorrow and even shorter runs on Thursday and Friday. The forecast for Alpine (starting town) on Saturday is a low of 48 and a high of 71 and a 20 percent chance of rain. Sounds good.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Back to Normal

I was busy most of the day working on post-race stuff. A lot of it was sorting out the race results. Some runners ran without their chip, at least one lost their chip, some runners did not report their age or sex and the chip timing company keyed in two females as males. So, we are still trying to sort out everything and it will require some mailing of awards to some runners.
My body felt like it was back to normal today. I suppose that running everyday facilitates quicker recovery from long runs. I worked out at Nautilus this evening and then ran my 2.7 mile course around town. I felt good. When I got back to the track, I ran into Amy, who had just finished a run on the track - barefooted, of course.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Early Post

You may have noticed that virtually all my posts are late at night. This one is early. I have to leave at 9:45 p.m. to go down to the airport to pick up Ben. He has been out in Yuma, AZ the last few days visiting his sister Mary and her Marine husband, Eric, and his Marine brother, Tim. His flight gets in at 11:30, so it will be a late night.
Between football games, I went over to the track and ran laps this afternoon. Tomorrow, I have a lot of race stuff to pack up and haul over and put in our club storage building.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Hot Half

It was early to rise this morning to get everything loaded in my truck and be at the starting point for the Huntsville Half Marathon & 5K at 5:45 a.m. It was my first time running this race since 1996. I started directing the race in 1997. It was a hot and humid morning in Huntsville. I took on a lot of fluid and a couple electrolyte capsules during the race. I finished in 2:46:08 (4 of 6 in my age group). The heat really made it a tough race. I kept thinking about the marathon next Saturday in southwest Texas and trying to convince myself that the lower temperature and dry air would make it tolerable.
It was great that so many of our club members from the south (including Kemah, Spring, The Woodlands and Conroe) were up working as volunteers. A special thanks to Bill Dwyer and TWRC for loaning and delivering 250 traffic cones. This made the course much safer for the runners. Congratulations to our own Adrienne Langelier for repeating as the female winner in the half marathon and to Lavonne for finishing her first half marathon. When I turned the corner to head for the finish line, Norman, Lavonne and Kolton Allen were there to join me to the finish line. I appreciated that. Kolton is 9 years old and came over from Lexington to run the race. He, along with Norman, were the two selectees for the Fit Texan Award for 2008.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Tomorrow Will be Over Soon

Putting on races is a lot of fun, but it always a relief when the things over with. I have been handing details all day and then we did packet pickup this evening from 5 to 8. It was Niki, Robert Duncan, Lavonne and I. Since then, I have been entering entries into the data base, boxing up T-shirts and stacking up stuff to load on my truck early in the morning. I may be too tired to run the race tomorrow - but I'll do it.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Resting for the Half

I didn't get much sleep last night. I was awake thinking about all the stuff I had to do to get things ready for the Huntsville Half Marathon on Saturday. It would be easy if I just could only run it. I went through a long list of places I had to go, things I had to buy and things I had to do. Finally squeezed in a 2-mile run on the road. While running through the campus, I got stopped by a girl that worked on my hamstring at the doc's office. We had a short visit and I recruited her as a volunteer road guard on Curtis' committee. When I got back to the track, I also recruited a guy who use to work for me when I worked for a living. Then, I met Curtis and Phillip (now two less volunteers short) and we drove the half marathon course and checked and marked all the mile markers. After that, we had the packet stuffing party at my house. Thanks to Marilynn, Lavonne, Phillip, Kathy Cook and all the Langwells, we got it done in a couple hours. I have a lot more to do tomorrow. Looks like the weather will be nice on Saturday, but maybe a little on the warm side.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Back at the Park

I ran 3 miles on the roads at the park this evening, while Hans, Curtis, Marisa, Chris, Curtis and Phillip ran trails. Amy finished up a run on the trails by herself and we visited her for a while.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Last Nail

I put the last nail in my new storage building today and started puddying in preparation for painting. If I have to say so myself, it is looking good. Finish photo forthcoming. After going to Nautilus this evening, I ran 3.7 miles around town. Ran into Adrienne and we visited briefly.

Late Posting

I have been working on Huntsville Half Marathon stuff and did not realize that it was after midnight. I only ran laps at the track this evening, anyway.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

15.6 Will Have to Do

I ran 15.6 miles on the roads at the state park, starting about 10:30 a.m. That will have to do for my long run before the marathon on October 18. I usually like to do 20 before a marathon, but with the heat and sore hamstring and knees, I had to settle for less. Hopefully, it will be cooler and less humid out in southwest Texas.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

New Out of the Box

I took a new pair of running shoes out of the box and started breaking them in this evening. Obviously, they felt stiff and I only did two miles on the road. The Marathon 2 Marathon is two weeks away and I need to get them broken in by then. I'll probably do my long run tomorrow in the old shoes and then switch to the new ones entirely. Since Niki is directing the Huntsville Half on October 11, I plan on running it. I have not run it since I starting directing it in 1997.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Something Different and a PR

To do something different, I went down to The Woodlands for the 7 p.m. Nike South Cross Country 5K put on by The Woodlands Running Club. Since it was getting dark, they changed the course to the lighted area around the football field, which shortened the course. SHRC and TWRC member, Bill Dwyer, was in charge and we had a nice visit. He estimated the course to be a 4K. I ran a 24:41, so it was certainly not a 5K. Since I have never run a 4K, this would make it a PR.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Sorta Like Yesterday

Today was sorta like yesterday, except that I did my 2.7 mile loop in town.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Off Day

After working on my storage building most of the day, I worked out at Nautilus and then ran laps at the track. The cooler and dryer air is nice.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Ten on Tuesday

Because of my hamstring problem, I am staying off the trails for now. After the Marathon to Marathon in October and the San Antonio Marathon in November, I plan on getting back on the trails to train for Sunmart in December. Lavonne and I ran 5 miles on the roads at the park with the intention of doing it again. Just as we got back to the Nature Center, the trail group showed up to run their 4.5 mile loop. Lavonne joined them and I did the 5 mile loop again. Ate supper when I got home, went to Wal-Mart and then to Nautilus about 9 p.m.. There was a completely different crowd at Nautilus than I usually see between 5 and 6 p.m.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Back to the Shed

Now that my house is back to normal, I worked on my storage shed most of today and ran my 2.7 mile loop on the road this evening. About half way through my run, I met club members, Mary Sweeten and Mariah Reynolds, and we visited for a while.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

House Empty Again

My daughter, Lisa, came in from Chicago on Thursday morning and went back today. Kenny was up from Houston, George and Shannon and their three kids were here from Plano and Ben, of course, was here also. So, the house was full for the weekend. All are gone now and it is quiet. I hit the streets late this evening and did my 2.7 mile loop around town. I have to get in at least one long run this week, before I start tapering for the Marathon to Marathon on October 18.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Fall Fun Run

I have a house full of people this weekend, but I did take time out to run the club run this morning. I ran the Fall Fun Run 10K in 1:16:43. Tough out and back course, all up or down hill.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Out of Town Today

We went up to Tyler early this morning for a family get together and got back late tonight. I just got back from running laps at the track.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Got it Overwith

I had my procedure this morning. The doctor had to remove a couple pollups, but he didn't think there was any problem. They woke me up at 11 a.m., told me not to run today and within 15 minutes, I was at Los Pericos eating cheese enchiladas. Real food, finally! In keeping with the doctor's orders, I took a day off and ran laps at the track tonight.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Rough Day

With nothing today except clear liquids and the nasty stuff I had to drink in preparation for my procedure tomorrow, it was rough day for running. I timed it right and got in a mile at the track this afternoon. With the lighter weight, I really ran fast.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

2.7 on the Roads

I ran my 2.7 mile loop around town this evening. When I got back to the track, Brian Loft was finishing up a 7 mile road run and we visited for a while.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Frustrated Trail Runners

With the continued closure of the Huntsville State Park, the trail runners are having to get use to running on the roads again. Chris, Hans, Andrew and Karen met at the HKC on campus this evening and ran the Huntsville Half Marathon loop (6.55 miles). Since I do not have a university parking pass, I went to the track and ran the roads from there. I met the group out on Sycamore. Hans and Chris were carrying cans of spray paint and were suppose to be repainting the mile marks. Knowing those two, they were probably doing some graffiti too. I ended up doing 3.7 miles.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Under Achieved

I had planned to do a double loop around town today that would give me close to 16 miles. I parked at the track and started the first loop from there. I realized early that the heat was taking on toll on me. My hamstring and lower back were hurting. When I finished the first loop, I did a lap at the track to get in a full 8 miles. I don't know how much was mental verses physical, but I gave up on the second loop. I should have run 8 miles away from where I parked and then back. I know that it doesn't count for anything, but my body feels like I did 16.
I start my preparation tomorrow for my colonoscopy on Thursday. For the next two days, my intake is limited to pasta, bread and meat (without sauces or condiments). Wednesday is limited to clear liquids and the nasty stuff you have to drink to clean out your system. Thank goodness, I have to do this only once every five years. It's the last part of my physical; the rest was okay.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Warming Up

I knew better than to think the hot weather was over. While the cool post-Ike temperature was nice, it's back to late September reality. I spent much of the day cleaning out my garage and putting a bunch of stuff in the new unfinished storage building. Most of next week will be taken up with my colonoscopy on Thursday and the three days of preparation. Is beer a clear liquid? Plus, my daughter, Lisa, is coming in from Chicago Wednesday night and will be here through the weekend. So, I will not start putting the siding on the storage building until the next week. I went to the track this evening and from there ran my 2.7 mile loop around the campus. Wendell Londeen was running at the track and I visited with him for a while. Wendell is 82 and is planning on running the Houston Half Marathon in January. He ran it two years ago, but missed it last year because they sold out before he registered. He lost his wife a few months ago, but is doing well. Nice guy.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Getting Ready for the Half

Niki Bellnoski is directing the Huntsville Half Marathon & 5K Run/Walk this year. I'm her assistant. For the first time, we are giving finisher medals for the half marathon this year and trophies for the top three in each age group. Niki called today and said that she received the finisher medals and they look great. I received three big boxes of age group trophies today. Marilynn and I sorted them all out tonight and checked the engraving. Only one engraved plate was wrong. We have plenty of time to get that fixed. Also, Run Wild Sports (chip timing) has offered us disposable chips at no extra cost. We took them up on that. That means that all the runners can keep them chips and we won't have to collect them at the finish line.
I worked on my storage building all afternoon and ran laps at the track this evening. J. C. was there and we visited for a while. He is running well.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Avenues 5K

Lavonne, Norman and I ran the Avenues 5K at 6 this evening. I could get use to this cooler running weather. When I drove back home, I noticed a lot more businesses with power. I hope we get back to normal soon.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Four Quadrants

I went to the track this evening and took off from there running the roads. No planned route, but I ended up running in all four quadrants (redundant) of the city. I dodged a lot of tree service and electric company trucks, but they seemed to be everywhere. I was not sure how far I had run until I got home and mapped it on the USATF running route site. It ended up being 7.85 miles. I have another appointment for treatment of my hamstring tomorrow and am suppose to have one more after that. Marathon 2 Marathon is a month away and at this point I am confident that I can finish it. I hope they don't mind waiting for me.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Slow Recovery

Maybe because we got our power back on Saturday night, I expected most others would have it back by now. From what I observed driving and running around town, very few homes and businesses have power. People must be going stir crazy. I ran a 3.3 mile course in town this afternoon. Nice weather.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Huntsville Still a Mess

I ran a 4.6 mile course around Huntsville today. There were a lot of power and tree cleanup crews working, but I have not noticed any new areas with power. The few gas stations that had gas and their pumps operating had long waiting lines. Maybe tomorrow will be better. At the same time, I know those in areas along the coast have it much worse. Chris Wilson is home alone and without power. I invited him over tonight to take a hot shower and watch the Cowboy game (in that order), but he was afraid that he would be arrested and jailed for violating the county-wide 8 p.m. curfew. Gosh, at least if he was in jail, he would get three hot meals a day.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Sunday Run

Things are still messed up in Huntsville. There is virtually nothing open in town. We went to church (power-less, so to speak) and then tried to find a restuarant that was open. We found one that was open and operating off a generator. There was no air conditioning and my chicken fried steak was terrible. I spent most of the afternoon clearing the tree limbs out of my yard. Later this evening, I went into town and ran my 2.7 mile loop. It looks like the great majority of Huntsville is still without power. I think we were lucky to get our power back on last night.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Messed Up Saturday

Our power went out about 6 this morning and we got it back tonight shortly before 10. Not bad. We were expecting much longer. Hurricane Ike came through Huntsville this morning as a Category 2. We had no damage at our house, but many others in Huntsville were not so lucky. There were many large trees down all over town and some fell on houses. I jut read on the news that a lady was killed by a falling tree at Elkins Lake. Virtually all of Huntsville was without power all day. I didn't even see a single traffic light working. I ran my 2.7 mile loop around town at 4 p.m. It rained the whole time and I had to run through a lot of water and over fallen tree limbs. So goes the life of a streaker.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Making Progress

I had already put the felt on my storage building roof, but with the hurricane coming tomorrow, I figured it would all blow away. So, I decided to spend today putting on the shingles. I sure hope they don't blow away. Ben came over to help and we finished up about 5:30 this evening. I was really beat after climbing up and down the ladder all day. I went over to the track at 6 and ran laps in the rain. Tomorrow will be interesting. I think the eye of the hurricane is suppose to pass over Huntsville about 10 a.m. Maybe that would be the best time to get in a run.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Hurricane is Coming

I had my hamstring treatment this morning and I believe it is doing better. The doc wants me to get three more treatments. I went over to the track this evening to do a run on the roads. Three of the women who have been treating my hamstring were there, getting ready for a run. I made sure they saw me stretching before taking off on my run. I did my 2.7 mile loop. The hurricane will hit on Saturday. Being a streaker, I am always thinking ahead and planning on how I can get in a run. Saturday will be a challenge, but maybe not as challenging as the three days of preparation for my colonoscopy on September 25.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Staying Off the Trails

In keeping with my doc's suggestion, I am staying off the trails for now. I met up with the group at the park this evening and ran 3 miles on the park roads with Mary and Mariah, while Hans, Chris, John, Marisa and Phillip ran trails. Curtis was finishing up his trail run when we all started. According to the park police officer, the park will be closed this weekend due to Hurricane Ike. The park will be a base for all the crews brought to this area to restore electrical power.

Getting Dark Earlier

My son, George, who is a police officer in Plano, spent the night with us last night. He was here for a one-day training program today at the Criminal Justice Center. I had a treatment on my hamstring this morning and then Marilynn and I had lunch with George. I spent the whole afternoon working on my storage building. I have so many cuts and bruises on my fingers, hands, forehead and arm. Buy stock in Johnson-Johnson Band Aids. I guess I would never make it as a carpenter. After 6 this evening, I went to Nautilus and then did 2.7 miles on the road. I was finishing up my run about 7:50 and it was already dark. Surely, the cool weather will be here soon.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Rest Day

I worked on my storage building all day and did a lot of heavy lifting. Also got sunburned. I took a break this evening and went to Nautilus to do some more lifting. After that, I ran laps at the track. Back to the doctor tomorrow for another treatment on my hamstring.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Double Digits, Finally

Lavonne and I ran out and back the whole length of Veterans Memorial Blvd. plus some this evening, a total of 11 miles. It was a new distance for Lavonne and she did great. While my hamstring hurt the entire run, I did not get the sharp pains that I got last Sunday. The doc told me that the sharp pains were new muscle tears. So, I decided today that if the sharp pains returned today, I would stop my run and give up on training for the Marathon 2 Marathon on October 18. I have two treatment appointments this week, so maybe I can continue to increase my distance.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Bearkat Bash

I got up early and went down to Spring for the Bearkat Bash 5K at Klein HS. I finished in 35:18 (4th in age group). It looks like they had their biggest crowd ever. I would guess close to 800. It was good to visit with many old running friends, but there was only one other Seven Hills Running Club member there. That was John Slate.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Stretch, Stretch, Stretch

I had a long doctor's appointment this morning, going into the afternoon Beside heat, massaging and lasers, they treated my hamstring with an electronic machine that goes deeper than the normal ultra-sound. I can't remember what they called it. They also stretched the hamstring. The doctor wants me to stretch the hamstring before I run and three more times a day. I have two more appointments next week.
I went straight from the doctor's office to the track to run laps. I'm doing the Bearkat Bash 5K at Klein HS in Spring tomorrow morning. It's one of those races that I do every year. This will be seven in a row. I don't recall ever placing in the race; I seemed to always place 4th in my age group and John Chenette from Crockett seemed to always get the third place medal. Last year, I saw his wife, Barbara, during the race and asked where John was. She said that she would talk to me at the finish line. She told me at the finish line that John had passed away a couple months earlier. They had just finished a 5K training run and were driving home. He had a heart attack while driving and she managed to get their truck stopped. John was a super guy. He and I went to so many of the same races, including the Polish Pickle and Stu's Country Mile. And, he and his family always participated in the Huntsville Half Marathon & 5K. Well, I came in 3rd place in my age group at last years Bearkat Bash 5K. I took the medal, but I know that it really belongs to John. I look forward to visiting with Barbara tomorrow.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Forest Hills 5K Course

Lavonne and I ran the Forest Hills 5K Course this evening at 4:40. That's my old neighborhood and I have not run there for a while. After the run, I went back on top of my storage shed and installed a couple more rafters. My step latter has to be at least 30 years old and is awfully rickety. I think I'll buy a new one tomorrow. I sure don't want to have an accident and break my streak. A few years ago, a neighbor had an accident with his ladder and broke his leg. He ended up having it amputated. We passed his house today and I saw him.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Two Appointments

Had two doctor appointments today. One was for treatment on my hamstring and the other was a consultation for a colonoscopy to be done on September 25. The doctor is not happy with how my hamstring is progressing. He says that I have to cut back on my running. He gave me another appointment for this Friday and will try a new treatment. Then, I went to the second appointment. The nurse gave me instructions for the three prior to the colonoscopy. This is going to be fun not skipping a day of running.
After all this, I went to the track and ran laps, worked on my storage building and went to The Woodlands for a birthday dinner with my oldest son, Kenny.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Welcome Back, Mary

I wasn't sure who would be at the park this evening. It was Hans and John and then Mary Sweeten showed up. She admitted that it had been a while since she ran. She had to be somewhere at 7, so she ran a couple miles on the park roads with me. It was good to have her back. Her long run was the Rocky Raccoon 25K last October.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Making Progress

I am making progress on my new storage building. Next is the rafters and that is sorta complicated for an amateur. I did take a break and go out to the park to run this evening. In keeping with my hamstring recovery plan, I ran a couple miles on the park roads, while everyone else ran trails. It was Hans, Phillip, John, Chris and Andrew and Karen. Curtis was out biking and dropped by for our social hour.

9.4 Done

I saw Lavonne at church this morning and invited her to run Veterans Memorial Blvd. with me this evening at 6. We met at the Mall parking lot and ran south to the I-45 service road (4.7 miles) and back to the Mall for a total of 9.4. Marilynn was kind enough to meet us at the turnaround point with water. It was a new distance for Lavonne. Congratulations! That's a tough course, all up or down. No flats. Probably good training for Marathon 2 Marathon. Out near the back entrance to Elkins Lake, there were two herds of tame deer. They just stand there and stare at you when you run by. I guess the residents of Elkins Lake have been feeding them for too many years. The deer in my neighborhood run off if you get near them.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Other Two Walls Framed

I worked on my storage building all day. I finished framing the other two walls today and am very tired. I really did not feel like running this evening, but I did run laps at the track. Tomorrow is long road run day, hamstring or not.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Electrolyte Capsules Without Running

I worked most of the day on my new 10 x 12 storage building. Here is a photo of the progess. I found myself sweating more than I do when running. Besides taking on a lot of fluids to stay hydrated, I took three Electrolyte capsules while I was working. I guess they did their job; I felt fine. Just after I put away my tools for the day, a storm passed through and cooled things off a bit. About 7 p.m., I ran my 2.7 mile loop around town.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Football Season is Here

Busy day. I worked on construction of my new storage building most of the day. I took a break and went for treatments on my hamstring late this morning. It seems to be taking longer to heal than it did when I first injured it the first time over a year ago. I ran laps at the track late this afternoon before going to the SHSU football game with Eastern Central Oklahoma at 6 p.m. It was a blowout. Sam was up 52 to 0 at halftime. The final score was 58 to 14. I talked to Curtis at the track and then to SHRC member, Angie Burns, at the game.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Avenues with Lavonne

Lavonne and I ran the hilly Avenues 5K course at this afternoon. I had been working on my new storage building and I was already pretty beat. The concrete truck showed up this morning and I spent a lot of time on my knees trying to smoothen out the concrete and insert anchor bolts. Now, I have go vertical with the construction. I'm not sure why I need a storage building, when I have a big garage. For some reason, Marilynn thinks she should be able to park her car in the garage. I told the group at the park last night that I would be there this evening, so after running with Lavonne, I went out to the park. Mariah was the only one that showed up. She hit the trail to do the 3.5 mile course. Since I am not suppose to run trails for now, I hiked out until I ran into her coming back. I ran into Curtis Barton, who was biking. He said that Phillip Clark was running a 5 mile loop.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Following my Doctor's Suggestion

Because of my hamstring problem, my doctor suggested that I stay off the trails for now. I met the group at the park this evening, but while they were on the trails, I ran park roads. They were doing the 3.5 mile loop, so I did a little over 3. It was John, Veronica, Mariah and Stephen. Veronica ran some with us last year and is back after having her baby. Mariah has run with us before and Stephen is new in town. After we finished running, we ran into Len Hills, who had been out on the trails by himself.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Coming Back

I did 3.3 on the road this evening. It was probably not pretty, but the hamstring and lower back loosened up somewhat as I ran. With the marathon on October 18, I have a long way to go and a short time to get there. Aren't those words from an old Jerry Reed country song?

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Roads Now Busy

The SHSU students are back this weekend, so the roads in Huntsville are busy again. I pulled something in my lower back this morning. I am not sure what I did, but it was hurting this afternoon. The good news is that it took my mind off my hamstring and normal sore and stiff knees. I hate to think about running when I get old. I did 2.7 miles on the roads this evening.

Saturday, August 23, 2008


I ran the Heat Wave 5K in Huntsville in 37:29, a PW (personal worst). Colleen Spencer, a physical therapist, was running behind me for a while and she said that I was running with only 20 percent use of my knees. Since they are sore and stiff all the time, that did not surprize me. It was the hamstring that really slowing me down. The last seven 5K races I have run, my time was 34 something. So, I broke somewhat of a streak. I'm glad I got my run in this morning. It would have been difficult fitting one in this afternoon between the thunderstorms. It's back to the road tomorrow and then a treatment Monday on my hamstring Monday morning.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Squeezing in a Run

For being a retired guy, life is busy. I went to a funeral this morning and then changed my oil in my truck and did yard work. Then I had to run errands in town. My nephew from Tyler dropped in late this afternoon for a nice visit and then another friend dropped by. Before I knew it, it was nearly 8 p.m. I went over to the track and ran laps in a light rain. The cooler temperature was certainly welcome. I think my hamstring is ready for the club 5K run tomorrow. If Darren Grant does not need my help in putting on the race, I will go ahead and run it. Lavonne will be there, so maybe she will push me.

Road Run at the Park

I had another treatment on my hamstring this morning and then mowed my tall wet grass inbetween rain storms. My doc advised me not to run on the trails, so I went to the park this evening and ran a couple miles on the road. My hamstring felt better. The usual group was at the park running trails, Hans, Chris, John, Phillip, Marisa and Karen. Amy and her friend, Sketch, were there running a different course.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Back in Town

Marilynn, Ben and I returned from Tyler this evening. We attended my brother's visitation yesterday and funeral this morning. Since he was a Tyler firefighter for 46 years and the Assistant Chief for the last 25 years of his career, the Tyler Fire Department was at the visitation and funeral in force. In fact, at the cemetery, they had four large trucks with their lights on and three bag pipers. The family really appreciated the honor. Mickey's oldest son is a DPS sergeant in Palestine, so there were about 30 state troopers at the funeral. We will miss Mickey. His obtituary is here.
I went to the track and ran laps when I got home. The hamstring is a little better. I have an appointment at the Chiropractor tomorrow morning for a third treatment. I have not given up on doing the Marathon 2 Marathon on October 18. Heck, I don't think they have a time limit.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Checking In

Ben and I went to the Astros game yesterday. On the way home, I received a call that my oldest brother, Mickey, in Tyler passed away. I got in a run when I got to Huntsville and then Marilynn and I drove up to Tyler. I left Marilynn up there and came back this afternoon to get some things done in Huntsville. Ben and I are driving back up to Tyler tomorrow afternoon for visitation and the funeral on Wednesday. Mickey was a veteran of WWII and retired from the Tyler Fire Department 14 years ago. He worked there for 46 years, most of that time as the Assistant Chief.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Still Recovering

Ben called me at 6 a.m. this morning when he got off work. His car would not start. He got a jump and brought it over to my house. I ended up spending most of the morning working on his car. I also received several calls from Tyler, as my oldest brother, who will be 84 next month, is in ICU at the hospital. In anticipation of maybe having to drive to Tyler today, I went to the track in the early afternoon and did an easy, but painful, one mile run. I may go up to Tyler tomorrow.
I did watch the Olympic Marathon this evening. I am humbled by the fact that if I were participating, I would still be on the course. The winner was from Romania. Seven Hills Running Club member and marathon runner, Mihaela Mullin from Kingwood, is also from Romania. She has good reason to be proud.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Back from the Desert

Marilynn and I drove out to Yuma, Arizona with Timothy on August 5. He will be stationed there at the Marine Air Station. Our daughter, Mary and her Marine husband, Eric, are also there. We all stayed with Mary and Eric and their little Phillip and Emma. We had a great time. Enroute to Yuma, we spent the night in Van Horn, Texas and I got in a run there. I ran at the Marine Air Station in Yuma about 6 p.m. every night when the temperature was down to 106. The hamstring felt okay until our last night there. I ran a mile on the asphalt road and then turned onto a sandy trail in the desert. For some reason the hamstring started really hurting. I ended up walking back to the house. We flew back home yesterday and I ran at the track late last night. I went to the doctor this morning and luckily they started treatment on my hamstring before lunch. I have another appointment Monday morning. I ran laps at the track this evening. I'll continue to take it easy for a few days and then try to do longer runs on the roads. Tripping on those roots at the park seems to aggravate my hamstring and it's only 2 months before the Marathon 2 Marathon.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Rehab Road Run

The ole hammy felt better today, so I hit the roads for 2.6 miles. Due to heat, injuries and stress, I have really been sluffing off lately with short runs. With the marathon coming up on October 18, I really have to start getting my distance up.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Gimpy Mile

My hamstring was burning today, so I went to the track this evening for a gimpy one mile run. Hopefully, tomorrow it will be better. The good news is that we finally got a little rain this evening.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Hamstring Acting Up

For some reason, my hamstring started acting up this morning. Does stress affect hamstrings? I did manage to get over to the track early this afternoon and do a painful one mile run. I have had a house full of people most of the day and every bed and couch and some of the floors are occupied tonight.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Stressed 2

Today was more stressful than yesterday. I survived and managed to get in 2.5 miles on the roads in town.

Thursday, July 31, 2008


I have been very stressed out today about something and did not feel like running. So, I ran one mile at the track. Tomorrow may be even more stressful.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Park Mysteries

I have been running trails at the Huntsville State Park for the last 13 years or so. The park is a great local resource for runners, bikers and hikers.
On the south perimeter road, there is a spot where water runs over the road in wet weather. For years, there was a sign at that spot that said, "Amy's Crossing." It was a common reference point when describing different courses on the trails. However, no one I knew had any idea who Amy was or why there was a water crossing named after her. Well, I got an answer from the park superinendent, Chris Holm. Here it is:
"According to my sources...Amy was a past employee (Environmental Ed. Coordinator) who apparently, after a brief rain shower one day, called out the troops to rescue her when she got "stranded" on the other side of that creek crossing. When everyone showed up to assist, it was discovered that the water was only ankle deep and she ended up "saving" herself by simply walking across the creek."
Mystery One solved.
When running trails in the hot summer months, occasionally you run into pockets of cold air, which last only a few seconds. When running with Lavonne and Amy last Sunday, we ran into one of the pockets of cold air. Lavonne asked me what caused it. I have no idea and asked a few other trail runners. They said they experience the same thing but do not know what causes it. Lavonne is pretty persistent and emailed USA Today for an answer. She received a response and posted their explanation on her blog. Click here for a link.
Mystery Two solved.
We had a nice crowd for our 4.5 mile run on the trails this evening. It was Hans, Chris, John, Phillip, Andrew and Karen, Katie, me and my Marine son, Timothy. Curtis had just finished his run when we arrived. We did not experience any pockets of cold air, but we did pass Amy's Crossing.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Long Summer

Hans, Chris, Phillip, Amy and I ran trails at the park this evening. Amy had a date tonight, so she cut her run to a mile and a half. The rest of us did the regular 4.5 mile loop.
I don't know if its just me, but this summer seems extra long. I know that I have spent more time on the trails at the park this summer. Usually, I let the horseflies have the park during the months of May, June and July, but most of them seem to be elsewhere this summer. The hot weather is relentless and its only the end of July. And, we still have two more months of hot weather to go. My first marathon of the season is the Marathon 2 Marathon (Alpine to Marathon, Texas) on October 18. One way or the other, I am going to have to get my distance up in August and September. Thank goodness for Electrolyte capsules! I am looking forward to the challenge of running 26.2 west to east on Highway 90 from Alpine to Marathon. I "drove" the highway on Google Earth and there is absolutely nothing between Alpine and Marathon. It will be like running the Surfside Beach Marathon, except there will be no noisy surf or seagulls. After two careers and six kids, I enjoy solitude.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Road Run

In anticipation of going to the Astros game this evening, I did a short 2.4 mile run on the roads in the 100 degree heat at 3 p.m. As it came out, we could not get the family together and we did not go to the game.
If anybody knows a good rain dance, I need you in my yard. We did not get a drop in my neighborhood during the hurricane last week and there is virtually nothing in the forecast. I dread seeing my next water bill.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Amy Does 6.8 - Barefooted

Lavonne, Amy and I did the 6.8 mile outer loop at the park this evening. It was a new distance for Amy and she ran in her usual manner - barefooted. She and Lavonne are running well. We started at 6 p.m. when it was still hot. By the time we finished, the sun was low on the horizon and it at least seemed much cooler.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Dog Days Done

The Dog Days 5K was this morning in Huntsville. This was our monthly club run for July. We had 13 runners, including several kids from Livingston, Groveton and Magnolia. Darren Grant and his daughter, Tammany, did a great job in putting on the race. I took care of putting out and picking up the turn signs on the course and driving the course during the race to keep an eye on the kids.
I ran 3 miles on the roads about 4 this afternoon. When I passed a temperature sign, it read 100 degrees.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Friday Trail Run

Amy and her friend, Sketch, and I did a little over 3 miles on the trails at the park this evening. We ran into Seven Hills Running Club member, Gerald Peters, who was finishing up his run.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Day Off

I had a bunch of stuff to do today and I have to go down to the airport this evening to pick up Timothy. I took the day off from running, except for one mile at the track this afternoon.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Dry at Home, Wet at the Park

My lawn is craving some rain water; there are so many cracks in the ground, it looks like we were hit with an earthquake. The outer bands of the hurricane did not quite reach Huntsville today. However, there was a heavy rain just south of Huntsville and it looks like the State Park received a good dose. We ran the "steamy trails" at the park this evening. We did the regular 4.5 mile loop. It was me, Hans, John, Josh, Karen and Amy. Phillip and Curtis had run earlier and were leaving the park when we got there.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Crowd at the Park

We had a nice crowd at the park this evening for the 4.5 mile loop. It was Hans, John, Lavonne, Phillip, Marisa, Amy and myself. Curtis was just finishing his trail run when we got started. Amy is still running barefooted and is doing well with the 4.5 mile course. She has made a commitment to run the outer loop (6.8) with me at 6 p.m. on Sunday. It will be a new distance for her, but she can do it.

Monday, July 21, 2008

2.7 Mile Loop in Town

After Nautilus this evening, I went out and ran my 2.7 mile loop in town. I noticed a lot of law enforcement activity in town and found out before I got home that there was an inmate escaped from the Wynne Unit in Huntsville between 4 and 5 this evening. They are still looking for him. My son, Ben, is a Correctional Officer at the Huntsville Unit and he got called in this evening to help with the search. Hopefully, they will find him soon. Update: 10:27 p.m. Ben just called me to tell me that he was just caught in Madisonville.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Sunday Seven

Lavonne and I did 7.0 miles at the park at 5 this evening. It was hot, but it is suppose to be this time of the year. We ran into J. C. Guzman on the trail and he said that Curtis Barton was out there also. My hamstring felt fine.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

On the Wet Roads

I put on a new pair of shoes out of the box today and hit the roads in town just after a storm passed. After I started running, a lightning storm blew in and I had to cut the run to 2.2 miles. Obviously, I got back to my truck without being struck. My hamstring seemed okay, so its back to the trails tomorrow afternoon in the heat.

Friday, July 18, 2008

So Far So Good

With the hamstring problem yesterday, I took it easy all day today and ran laps at the track this evening - fortunately, without much discomfort. I'll try a longer road run tomorrow.
Being a streaker, injuries, especially lower extremity ones, become worrisome. You always think about injuries, ones that will stop your streak now or become worse and stop it later. My previous streak was stopped by appendicitus in mid-December 2002, the day after running the Sunmart 50K and two weeks short of five years. Stopping that streak was a no-brainer. I was in the hospital for four days hooked up to too many things. I missed 13 days and had to start all over again. Now, I have gotten past the five-year mark. There have been some days when it was really painful to get in a run. I certainly realize how fragile a running streak is. There are so many injuries and illnesses that could stop it cold. I don't enjoy running and streaking is a way to make myself do it. I am convinced that running in the heat, cold, rain and whatever has helped me build up immunity to the flu and maybe other things. I know that since I started streaking, I have not had the flu. Before streaking, I use to get it as much as anybody. Of course, my streak is nothing compared to the top guys in the U.S. At the top of the national streak list is Mark Covert of California, who hits 40 years on the 23rd of this month. I'm 134 on the list. The list is maintained by the U. S. Running Streak Association.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Darn Hamstring

Lavonne and I did the outer loop (6.8 miles) at the park this morning. About a mile into the run, I turned my ankle on a root. While my ankle was okay, I pulled my left hamstring (the same one I pulled a little over a year ago). We finished the run, but it took longer than usual. I'll know more when I run tomorrow. The last one was not a streak stopper and I don't think this is one either.
My son, Lance Corporal Timothy, called from Cherry Point, North Carolina. He just got his orders for his first duty station. After he finishes his training next week, he will be assigned to the Marine base in Yuma, Arizona. That's great, because our daughter, Mary, and her Marine husband, Eric, are assigned there. Timothy is really looking forward to being with family. Marilynn and I were out there last August and it was 114 degrees every day. I learned very quickly to run well after dark. That place really makes you appreciate what the Badwater runners go through, with temperatures ranging from over 130 to down below freezing, during that 135-mile race.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Another 4.5

It was back to the park this evening for the 4.5 mile loop. The group consisted of Hans, John, Andrew, Karen, Amy, Katie (not Katy) and myself. When we got finished, some of us were ready for an adult beverage. However, John's cousin, the park police officer, came by to visit. We finally came to an understanding with him and we had a beer.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Soggy Shoes

It was so humid on the trails this evening that my shoes and socks were soggy from sweat when we finished. Hans, Chris, John, Phillip, Lavonne, Amy and I did the 4.5 mile loop.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Rain - Finally!

After at least two weeks without a drop, we finally got a nice rain this afternoon. I enjoyed sitting on the back porch just watching it. After it was over, I went to Nautilus for a workout and then ran 2.7 miles around town. The cooler temperature felt good.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Outer Loop

After church, I went out alone and did the outer loop (6.8 miles) at the park. I did not see any runners or other wildlife, except for a tick crawling up my shirt after the run. I'm blogging early today, because I have to write a Running Shorts column this evening for the paper. It's Katy's turn to write the column, but she is very busy and asked me to take her turn. The only problem is that she did not give me a suggested topic. I'll come up with something. It's like writing papers in college; the hard part is deciding on a topic.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

RTW and Picnic

I went down and ran the Run the Woodlands 5K this morning. For the 8th straight time, my 5K race finish was 34 minutes and something. Not fast, but darn I am consistent. After the race, I joined some others at Skeeters for breakfast. This included Loren Sheffer of Inside Texas Running and Runner Triathlete News and his friend, Lief, a professional comedian from Utah. Debbie Tripp, Bill Dwyer and others joined us. Later today, we had our annual summer Seven Hills Running Club picnic at the Huntsville State Park. We had a good time and I ate too much.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Resting Up for RTW

If I was not streaking on my blogs, I would probably skip today. Marilynn and I spent most of the day in The Woodlands with Ben. He had to have surgery to remove the pin they put in last month when they did surgery to fix his broken thumb. Since I am doing RTW tomorrow, I went to the track this evening and ran laps.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Thursday in the Park

Amy and I did 3.5 miles at the park this evening. Hans, John and Andrew and Karen ran 4.5. Just as we all started, Curtis and Phillip Clark were finishing up a 7-mile run.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


Here are the feet of two Seven Hills Running Club runners. Who do they belong to? Post your answer.
I ran 4.4 miles at the park this evening with the group. It was Hans, Chris, John, Andrew and Karen and a friend of Karen's, Katie McKee.
We have seen more armadillos this summer than in over 10 previous years combined. Is the eco system out of balance? Why are there so many?

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Marisa's Course

Amy and I ran Marisa's Course (3.5 miles) at the park this evening. We did not see any wild animals, but we did see an unusually large number of bikers and hikers for a weekday evening.

Monday, July 7, 2008

TMC Stuff

I received my Texas Marathon Challenge (TMC) stuff today. Nice jacket, dri-fit singlet and medal. This is for completing at least five Texas marathons (or longer) during the 2007-2008 marathon season. I did the Sunmart 50K, Texas Marathon, Surfside Beach Marathon, Seabrook Marathon and the Hog's Hunt 50K. Norman Langwell and Curtis Barton also completed the TMC.
We got up at 3 something this morning to drive Lance Corporal Timothy to the airport for his flight back to North Carolina. It was great having him here for the weekend.
I ran trails this evening with Amy and Mary Sweeten. It was Mary's first time out in a while, so we did 3 miles. Hans, Marisa and Andrew and Karen did the 4.5 mile loop.

Sunday, July 6, 2008


A little over a year ago and after much knee pain, I was diagnosed with chondromalicia. That's where the muscles on the outside of the legs become stronger from running. Since they are attached to the kneecaps, they tend to pull the kneecaps to the outside out of their normal groove. You start to get bone on bone pressure and inflamation and pain. To correct the problem, I had to wear elaborate braces that had straps around the kneecaps to pull them back to the center and into their groove. And, I still do excercises to strengthen the inside leg muscles, which are also attached to the kneecaps. This helps pull them to the center. My doctor would probably laugh if he heard this layman's discussion. In any case, they have improved somewhat, but my right knee more so than my left. My left knee has really been hurting more the last few days. It has been so painful that it is difficult to do my excercises. I have been taking some Aleeve, but I may have to dig my left knee brace out of the closet and start wearing it again.
Lance Corporal Timothy has been here for the weekend, but has to go back to Cherry Point, NC tomorrow morning. He has a 6:30 a.m. flight, so I have to leave at 4:15 a.m. to get him to the airport. We had his girlfriend and her whole family over for dinner tonight. Since I could not do a longer run this evening and my knee was hurting, I went over to the track and ran laps this afternoon.
I am impressed that some of you (i.e. Karen) are getting in longer runs in the heat. I know that with the Marathon 2 Marathon in October, I really have to get with it soon.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Busy Saturday

It was a busy Saturday with yard work and visiting family, but I managed to get in my 2.7 mile loop around town. The streets were empty; everybody else must have left town for the weekend.

Friday, July 4, 2008


For the 13th straight year, I went up to Centerville this morning for Stu's Country Mile 5K. The races starts and finishes on the downtown square in the middle of the Centerville 4th of July Celebration. Before the race started, I cut my arm on the porta potty door. I stopped the bleeding with a napkin and a nice lady found me a bandaid. Anybody else ever have a porta potty accident?
It was good to see all the other Seven Hills Running Club members there, including Jon and Waverly Walk, who made the long drive up from Spring. Jon and I ran the whole race together and finished in 34:01. My Marine son, Timothy, as of July 1 Lance Corporal Timothy, flew in yesterday from North Carolina to spend the weekend in Huntsville. He ran the race this morning, as did another son, Ben. Both won 3rd place in their age groups.
I have had a lot of other family at my house all day and I only have time to blog because most of them went to the fireworks stand not far away.
Hope all you had a nice holiday.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Chris Wilson Busted

Chris Wilson got busted yesterday by the state park police for drinking a Dr. Pepper. Since the park cop is John Cook's cousin, maybe Chris will get off light.
In anticipation of Stu's Country Mile 5K in Centerville tomorrow, I took today off and ran laps at the track in 96 degree heat. Guess I had better go have a Dr. Pepper.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Amy Does Her First 4.5

Amy got her distance up to 4.5 miles at the park this evening. She is running well and it will not be long before she is doing the 6.8 mile outer loop. Also running with us was Hans, Chris, Josh, Karen and Andrew. I am surprised by how little the horse flies have bothered us this summer. They are usually bad during May, June and July.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

3.2 at the Park

Amy and I ran trails at the park this evening. She says that she is ready for a longer run. So, tomorrow we will run 4.5 miles, which will be a new distance for her.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Change in the Weather

My plan was to run my 2.7 mile loop around town this evening. After a mile or so, I realized that it was not as hot as usual and/or the humidity was low. I actually felt comfortable. However, since I was siked up for 2.7, I left it at that.

Stormy Weather

We are finally getting some much needed rain on the west side of Huntsville. I had to time my run between storms this evening (Sunday, June 28). I started at the track in town and made a loop around the avenues and the campus. It was a new route and I had to check the distance on the USATF Route Finder when I got home. It came out to be 4.05 miles. The next storm hit just as I finished at 7 p.m.
I figure that the Marathon 2 Marathon on October 18 will be a strong motivator to do longer training runs late in the hot summer months. Usually, my first long race is not until Sunmart in early December. This year, it will be M2M in October and San Antonio in November.
Congratulations to my friend Vincent Attanucci of The Woodlands, who completed 2,000 days on his running streak on June 28. I am quick to point out that he is 11 days behind me and is unlikely to ever catch me. He is 135 on the national list and I am 134.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Bremond in June

There were about 500 runners at the Polish Pickle 5K in Bremond this morning. As usual, it was a fun event. The Seven Hills Running Club had 10 members running and there was a whole bunch there from The Woodlands Running Club. In fact, Debbie Tripp and I ran the last mile or so together. Adrienne Langelier ran a PR 18:56 and she was the third female finisher. Obviously, she had some tough competition. Jerry Flanagan, J. C. Guzman and Robert Duncan all got first place in their age groups. Ben Johnson, John Loftus, Norman Langwell, True Cousins and Keanu Cousins from the club also ran. I picked up second in my age group with a time of 34:26. There was probably only two in my age group. A group photo and unofficial race results for SHRC members are on the Latest News page of the club web site. Marilynn did some shopping at the booths and we stayed around to watch the pickle parade. Marilynn, Ben, Adrienne, Norman and I stopped at Robles Mexican Restuarant in Centerville on the way back to Huntsville.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Resting for the Pickle

The Polish Pickle 5K is tomorrow in Bremond, so I rested with a one-mile run at the track. It will be my 13st straight pickle. Ben, Norman and Adrienne are riding up with me also. While we are running, Marilynn will be buying a bunch of stuff at the booths up and down the main street.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

2008 in 2008

Today was 2008 consecutive days of running ending in the year 2008. Guess that match up won't occur again. While I thought we might be running trails in the rain, the rain was over by the time Lavonne and I started running at 6 p.m. The rest of the group started earlier and we met up with them on the trails. Lavonne and I ended up doing about 3.2 miles.

Went to the Astros Game

Marilynn, Ben and I went to the Astros game tonight (Wednesday, June 25). The photo above was a free one taken by the ATT people. They had it on their web site by the time we got home. Coincidently, Ben received a big box from the Texas Lottery today. He had mailed in one of those losing $5 baseball scrach offs and won a bunch a Astros stuff in a drawing. One thing was the jersey he was wearing in the photo. The same jersey was $88 at the Minute Maid Park store. He also received a cap, heavy jacket, light pull over jacket, Astros flag and two real nice stadium seats. Looks like he did okay with his losing ticket.
I did get in a 2.7 mile run on the road late this morning.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Marathon Plans

For several years, I ran a 50K and two marathons a year. This year, I stretched it out to three marathons and two 50K's. Now that I have gone beyond my 3-marathon mental limit, I will do more this year. Here's my plan:

October 13 - Marathon 2 Marathon (Alpine to Marathon, Texas) - Signed up.
November 16 - Rock 'n' Roll Marathon, San Antonio - Signed up.
December 6 - Sunmart 50K, Huntsville State Park
January 1 - Texas Marathon, Kingwood
February 14 - Surfside Beach Marahon, Surfside Beach
March 14 - Seabrook Lucky Trail Marathon, Seabrook
March 29 - Bataan Death March Memorial Marathon, New Mexico

The big challenge will be doing the long training runs in the late summer and fall to get ready for M2M in October. I just took a Google Earth tour of the course between Alpine and Marathon. There is nothing between those towns except desolation. Who need noisy spectators, anyway? I ran most of Surfside alone in the fog this year; a desert highway has to be about the same. M2M has to be a good race; years ago, they bought my book, "How to Put on a Road Race."

I ran trails this evening with Amy and Lavonne. Amy wanted to run a different course, so we headed south from the Nature Center and did some out and back on the south perimeter road when we got to that point. I figure we did 3.2 miles. Amy and Lavonne are running well.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Crowd at the Park

It was good to see John Cook back on the trails while still recovering from a leg injury. Also running trails this evening were Hans Jaeger, Christopher Wilson, Phillip Clark, Marisa Padilla and Andrew and Karen Husband. Curtis Barton was already out there doing the outer loop. I ran with John for about 2.5 miles, while the others did 4.5.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Lazed About

Sure didn't do a whole lot today. After church and dinner at Margarita's, I watched the Astros game and then watered all the new bushes and trees in the yard. It is so dry. What little rain we have had lately in Huntsville bypassed us on the west side of town. This evening, I finally got around to running 2.7 miles on the roads in town.

June Bug 5K

I got up early this morning (Saturday, June 21) to put out the signs for the Seven Hills Running Club's June Bug 5K race at 8 a.m. We had 22 runners show up. What surprized me was that most were not club members or even from Huntsville. Most were from Buffalo, Madisonville, Midway, Willis and New Waverly. Complete results and a group photo are on the club website on the Latest News page. After the race, Marilynn, Ben and I had breakfast at the Cafe Texan with True and Esther Cousins. Later this afternoon, I went over to the campus and ran the same 5K course.