Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Read the fine print

On Saturday I'm running The Great Race of Agoura Half Marathon. It is half on roads, half on trails and I thought it would be a good training run for Wildflower. I've started doing regular hill runs in Griffith Park with about a 350 foot elevation gain; Wildflower has 400 feet of ups and downs so I felt I was beginning to prepare myself. Tonight I decided to take a look at the Half Marathon run profile for the first time:

Doesn't look too bad until you do the math. NINE HUNDRED FEET??!!! Are they gonna have sherpas manning the aid stations?!

I'm doomed.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Watch Watchers

I was having Dinner with Dutch and he noticed my new watch. He was very complimentary: "Hey, nice watch!" I took it off to show him and his girlfriend. They were aware of my insecurities regarding my previous watch and they were saying all the right things: "It's big!" "It's heavy!" And you know what? I felt good about it. It's a minor point, but at least I had confirmation that there was one less thing for me to be self-conscious about.

That is until Stupid Dutch tried on the watch. He clamped it on his wrist and started to scream. OK, "scream" is too strong a word, but he definitely began speaking in highly aggitated and elevated tones. "OH MY GOD! THIS THING IS TIGHT!!!" So I'm just sitting there, being reminded oh-so-loudly how gurly my wrists are. "Gee, thanks a lot". "I'M NOT KIDDING! I CAN'T GET IT OFF!!!" Dutch stood up and struggled to rescue his hand from the tourniquet on his wrist. I guess he burst out of the metal links or whatever and managed to free himself. I put the watch loosely back on my own wrist.

I'm just going to get a pocket watch.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

New Development

I had my iPod on shuffle, and right as I was starting a hill climb today "The Final Countdown" came on. It was AWESOME! All I could do was think about Gob and it made me smile up the hill.

If you don't know what I'm talking about, you should get Arrested.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Going Up Again, Again

I did a group hill run tonight, pretty steep at times, 700' elevation rise overall. Being the smart and safe runner that I am, I brought my blinking light to clip on to my back to make it easier for cars to aim for me. As the sun started to set, I went to turn on my light but it didn't work. The thing was a freebie I picked up at a race 2 years ago, so I wasn't worried too much about it. When I got home, I threw it in the trash and...all together now... it started flashing.

Sometimes I think our gear intentionally mocks us.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Going Up Again

Over the past few month, my biking has been exclusively about distance. I've had to deal with some bad headwinds but the route is very flat. I am doing the very hilly Wildflower Long Course in about 6 weeks, and the Axis of Evil has really been getting on case to get out there and do some hills. I finally did a small climb tonight.

This was by no means a long ride; I only had about an hour of daylight. But it included a slow steady climb of about 1000 feet over 4 miles. My normal route is a 100 foot rise over 14 miles, so this was definitely different terrain. I had forgotten just how much slower everything is going uphill. Wildflower just got a whole lot longer.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Conquering Wildflower

I did Wildflower.

People warned me the hills were steep; I had no idea how steep.
People warned me it might be cold; I had no idea how cold.
People warned me it would be long and my legs would be begging for mercy; I had no idea how badly.

Click on the image above to see me at the start of Wildflower.

Friday, March 02, 2007

What's In A Name?

I had a scary realization last night.

I'm doing Wildflower in about 2 months. When I think "Wildflower", I think of how everyone is saying what an awesome party it's going to be. I think of camping and hippies and marshmallows. But there's also a triathlon going on. And it's a 1/2 Ironman distance. And one of the more difficult half-Ironman-distance courses.

"Wildflower Long Course" sounds fun. "Half-Ironman" sounds really hard. Maybe I should start training a bit more.