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.