Monthly Archives: September 2013

Drivers with cell phones suck!


Sunday morn, Beautiful morning, beautiful day. Not hot. Breezy. Very nice! Of course, I stayed until 2:30 AM drawing and stuff. So, woke up pretty tired. What to do. I know. Pushups, ab stuff, curls, pull ups, military presses. All while listening to Pink Floyd. Followed that by a savage breakfast of eggs, bloody steak, toast and milk!!! Awesomeness!!!

That evening at 6 PM, Joseph and I met some of our Starkville Striders gang at the South Farm entrance for a run thru town. Ten runners today, plus a couple of MSU runner girls (Jessica Comer and Rhianwedd Price) who stopped by for a bit. Joining Joseph and I in the run were Brent, Arash, Jorge, Juan, Will, Max, Robert Morgan, and Robert’s bud. Hung out a few minutes, then hit the road. Did the 5.3 mile loop. As per usual, pretty easy 1st mile, picked it up along the way. Last mile was pretty good. Jorge lead the way looking all speedy, with Juan behind due a pit stop. Brent, Joseph and I all got separated from them at 2 different red lights that they slipped thru. We finished at just under 35 minutes. Robert and his friend (Eric maybe?) were not far behind at around 37 minutes. I was quite surprised, because the last time Robert had run with us he was much slower. He has been running a lot, and has really leaned up. Quite a tremendous leap. Very impressive!

It was a wonderful evening to run with temps in the 70’s. Lots of folks were running, walking, and out and about. But, there was this one guy on his cell phone who nearly plowed into me, Joseph, Brent and Arash at stop sign. He stopped, then turned right without looking (he was looking at his cell phone), and we were right there. I basically plowed into his car door, but stopped my forward momentum by slamming my forward hand into the door. He stopped the car looking perplexed, perhaps angry. I simple threw my hands up in the air and was like, “dude, you just about hit us!”Well, technically, I guess he did.  Anyway, we walked around his still stopped car and got back on our way. Geez. Dude. Cell phones!!!!!! AHHHHHH!

Juan, Jorge, Arash, Brent, Joe, Joseph, Max, Robert, Eric, and Will

Juan, Jorge, Arash, Brent, Joe, Joseph, Max, Robert, Eric, and Will

group2_withgirlsWEB

Juan, Jorge, Arash, Brent, Rhianwedd Price, Jessica Comer, Joseph, Max, Robert, Eric, and Will.

Monday, Arash, Joseph and I did some semi speed work at the XC course at 6 PM. After jogging around some, we did 5 X 1000m runs on the flat lower loop. Weather was pretty nice, but none of us were super fast. I had a couple of 3:30’s, which were some of the slowest ones I have done. Last one was 3:18. Likewise, Joseph was mostly slow with 4 of this between 3:19 and 3:24, but his last one was 3:09, which was ok. Arash was near me on most of his except his third in which he zoomed in at 3:19. He was hurting on the next one though, and did not do the 5th. He did jump in near the end to push Joseph on his last one. Jogged some more, and headed home.

Tuesday, Rained all day, but slacked off enough to let me run at 6 PM! Nice. Ran thru campus, Research Park, Cotton District and downtown Starkville. Joining me today were Juan, Jorge, Will, and Mr. Triathlon Michael Lee. Jorge and I did a slightly longer route. I wound up with 53 minutes when done. Juan was aiming for about 6, Will something similar to go with his 4 morning miles, and Michael got in 4. Pretty easy run, but faster later, with nice last mile!

Wednesday, Met Michael Lee at McKee Park at 5k. We jogged for about 12 minutes thru the park and Longmeadow neighborhood for a warmup. Then, we picked it up doing three loops thru the neighborhood, which was pretty close to 6k, at a steady tempo pace. We started out together, but after about 400 meters I pulled ahead. I finished up at 22:32 for the 6k, then headed in the opposite direction to meet and finish up with Michael. After, we jogged back to the park, stretched and head out. Pretty good run.

Thursday, several of the guys in the group ran in a 5k on the MSU campus. Zach Marsh, Ian Prester, Michael Lee, and John Mooney participated in this, as did several other Starkville Striders such as Kate Mattox, who now run for Starkville High. We don’t see much of Kate lately, as it seems that many of the kids on the high school team tend not to run with our group any more. Zach won the race with an 18:18,  and Kate won the female division.

Meanwhile, Will, Brent, Ravi, Max, and I were joined in a 6 mile run by MSU runners Lucas Muniz, Jessica Comer, and Rhianwedd Price. Apparently, they had an off day and could run 5 or 6 miles on their own, so they joined us in our quest for finding Bigfoot. Awesome to have the likes of them out there with us again! We kept the run pretty easy today as we ran thru the campus, downtown, and the Greensboro District at about a 7-7:10 pace. We did pick it up for the last mile. Nothing crazy, maybe 6:30. Kamau Bostic passed us on a bike when we were in the Cotton District. He joined us for the journey back, and generally joined us in talking smack. Crazy joker. As we were running back thru the campus, we crossed paths with some of the runners in the 5k race, part of which was along our route. We were actually cheered on at some points. Always nice to be cheered for I guess. When we got back, nobody seemed to want to leave, so we hung out talking and stretching. Some of the nutty buddies decided to climb a tree and act like monkeys!

Lucas, Rhianwedd, Jessica, and Brent

Lucas, Rhianwedd, Jessica, and Brent

Will and Kamau

Will and Kamau

Saturday, Early morn run with Boardtown. Lots of folks from our group showed up with the likes of Will, Brent, Nick, Jessica, Rhianwedd, Kamau, and Lucas. Bunch of SHS kids were there too like Kate Mattox, Walker Mattox, Shanika Musser, Abigail Musser, Nick First, Arman Borazjani, Alex Ross, Patrick Bell, and a bunch of them that I don’t know. And of course, plenty of the weekend caste was there like Meggan Franks, Micah White, and Kelly White.  Ah, but it was a lovely morn to run. The route was 14.7 miles today, with several miles of gravel. I started out in front of the pack with Lucas and Kamau, who were only planning on doing 10 or 11 miles. At about a 1/2 mile, Micah caught up and passed us. He was cruising along pretty well. After hanging with Kamau and Lucas for an a mile or so, I also sped up to close to Micah’s pace, although did not catch him until the water stop. Turns out he was only doing a short route as he has a big race coming up next Saturday. I got a sip of water and ran the rest of the route by myself. Every once in a while, I passed somebody else who had started the run earlier than the main group.  Seems like all of  the faster people were either doing a shorter distance today, or running slower today. Shucks. Joseph did not even go today because he was a lazy slacker punk and did not get up to run. Oh well. The run went pretty well, I was feeling good for much of it, but I for sure slowed down when I got to Robinson Road, after which it was gravel for quite some time! Ended up running 1:37:42 for the route, or about 6:38 per mile.

WEEKLY WORKOUT SUMMARY

Sunday, AM – upper body/ab workout.

Monday, PM – warmup jog, 5 X 1000m intervals (3:19-3:30), cooldown jog

Tuesday, PM – 53 minutes easy to semi fast

Wednesday, PM – 1.5 easy, 6k tempo/fast (6:03 minute per mile average), 1 mile easy

Thursday, PM – 6 miles easy (43 minutes)

Saturday, AM – 14.7 miles (1:37:42; 6:38 mile pace)

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Homeschoolers and unattached high school runners not wanted in Mississippi


Sunday morning, another beautiful day, albeit still very dry. Got up and did routine stuff – house cleaning, dishes, laundry, that sort of thing, then did a upper body/ab workout. Finally got around to some lunch!

Later, Joseph and I met Juan, Jorge, Brent, Will, and Nick for a 6 PM run. We did our 5.3 ish route. The weather was still not overly hot, so we cruised along pretty well. Crazy Nick was wanting a slightly faster pace than his usual, which works out well for our easier days. This probably won’t be the case much longer, as that apple eatin’ dude is speeding up daily! He stayed with us for at least two miles and at a 6:20 or better pace! Will was back there too, but then backed off as he had already biked freakin 76 miles this morning! Geez. These guys. Brent had just got back from camping over the weekend, but had no problem staying with us the entire route. That trippin air force joker is getting fast! For Juan, Jorge, and Joseph, this was basically an easy run, but anytime I am running 5.3 miles right at 34 minutes (33:58), I am happy. And really, it was better than that because we had to slow down for lots of intersections, red lights, etc. The only time I really stopped my watch was when Juan and Jorge scooted thru a red light that caught the rest of us. We did not quite recatch those two, but did not lose any distance either and basically all 5 of us finished at almost exactly the overall time and pace. Awesome. Yep.

Monday, Easy run on the South Farm gravel at 6 PM with Will, Brent, Joseph, and Zach. Both Will and Zach jogged over from their respective homes, then ran. They both shortened up the run on gravel too, since they needed to jog home. I took it easy today. Felt really nice out, and I enjoyed a relaxing 51 minutes of running as the sun started to set. In fact, after about 3 miles, the others got ahead of me. They all took a shorter route back, but were still hanging out after I finished mine. Cool.

Tuesday, Got up in the morn and did some pushups and ab stuff. Not too much, but some. At 6 PM, John “Moonman” Mooney joined Joseph and I for some semi fast stuff at the MSU XC course. Dusty! After a 1000m warmup jog and light stretching we did 2 X 1000m, 4 X 1 minute (1 minute rests), and 2 X 30 seconds (30 second rests), then a cool down 1000m. Nothing crazy. Joseph was thinking he might run in the MSU High School XC Invitational on Thursday as a unattached runner, so no need to over do it in case. He lead the way, but we were right behind him. His first 1000 was 3:19, I was 3:21, and John was right behind me. Second 1000 was faster with Joseph 3:09, me 3:11, and John 3:13. Our 1 minute and 30 seconds fast deals were at least that fast. Felt pretty good. I was really thirsty. It was really dusty. And, I saw a unicorn.

Wednesday, 40 minute easy run with Nick and Brent thru campus and research park. On the way back, Nick headed back to his dorm. He ended up with about 19 miles for the day. Brent and I ran the remaining couple of miles pretty fast. As the sun was setting, it was ideal for running and we took advantage of it. Still hyper when I got home, so I did some pushups, pull ups, curls, shoulder presses, and crunches. AH. That’s better.

Thursday, Well, change of plans.  Joseph  did not get to run  in the MSU High School XC meet after all. Apparently, the SHS Coach   and the SHS Athletic Director Stan Miller got wind of his entry and contacted the Mississippi High School Activities Association and they all contacted the MSU coach and told him that Joseph could not run the meet. Thanks for jumping all over that! Even though Mississippi has allowed unattached runners in college hosted meets since they have had cross country as a sport in MS, and even though Joseph was able to enter and run one about three weeks ago, they have now decided that unattached and home schooled runners (especially Joseph MacGown because he is good??? — Don’t want no damn unattached runner beating our kids with real coaches!) can no longer run in any college hosted (or high school hosted) meets in MS, unless the meet offers them their own little race. Woohoo!  They cannot be in the same race as the public school kids because they have cooties?? Just another case of backwards attitudes in MS! Politics in sports. One reason why Joseph is not running this year for his school . He got tired of the games and bullshit. Not sure what would have happened had they let him run. Nothing happened when he ran in Jackson a few weeks ago. And, I could not get a straight answer on that question. In fact, I got lots of answers, none of which made any sense!  The funny thing is, before Joseph decided to run unattached this year, I checked with the director of track and XC for MS (Lonnie Tillman) last year to make sure it was ok for him to run in these college hosted meets. Lonnie Tillman told me it was fine.  Also, I have a copy of the rules from last year and it did not mention anything about unattached runners in there. And apparently, many of the college coaches were unaware of this rule. Today I talked to Lonnie Tillman again,  but now inexplicably his story had changed, and he said it has always been a rule. He did not respond to me asking him why he told me the opposite thing last year, nor did he respond to me asking him that why that rule did not appear in the older handbook. Coincidentally, the rules are no longer posted online. Perhaps there is something about this in the new rule book. Thanks for sharing that with folks. Not. Oh, wait, I still don’t know how to even purchase the new and improved rulebook, if that is even possible for a “civilian”. Good ole boys’ rules! Yeehaw Mississippi! On a positive note, I heard our bud Alex Ross had a good race today and won the meet with a PR time of 17:15. Way to go Alex.

Well, all was not lost. Life is not over. And, it was another beautiful day to run! Joseph watched some of a local swim meet, then he and I ran a nice 5.3 mile run with Brent, Will, and Max (Brent’s cool daddy German roommate). Max has been running on his own to try to get in shape to run with us! He did alright today, especially for that first 1.5 miles, which was probably about 7:20 pace. But, when we dropped it down to around 6 minute pace, it was Brent, Joseph and I. Will finished up a couple of minutes behind us, and Max a couple behind him. I should also mention that Will ran over there from his office, and back afterward, and also ran 5 miles that morning! So, awesome job guys! That crazy Brent is getting really fast man! Really getting hard to keep up with him lately instead of the other way around.

Saturday, Rained all night and was pouring in the morning. Still, we headed to the White’s for the weekly Boardtown Running Club long run. As were arriving, it was absolutely pouring! Windy like crazy. And, still pitch black at 6:25. We were thinking, geez, nobody will be running today, this was probably a waste of time. But, then, we saw Haley Jenkins running into blinding rain in the dark! Awesomeness! So, dang. We had to run then. Haley has come so far with her running. Its amazing really. She is quite inspirational! Keep it up Haley.  Actually quite a few folks showed up. Some of our Starkville Striders made it including Zach, Will, Ravi, and Nick! Joseph, Zach and I did the 12 mile loop. Ravi too, except he missed the turn near the end and ran who knows how far. Freaking Nick ran 6 miles to the club in the rain, then ran 12, then ran back home! Will did the longer 15.8ish mile loop today. Joseph ended up right around 1:20 with his first 6 miles ahead of me, then he ran back with me. I was 1:21:12. Zach was also in that area, but not sure exactly. As it turned out, the weather ended up not being too bad. Yeah, we did get wet, but really, it was much better than I expected. The return was harder because the wind was hitting us in the face! Will said he added some later and got in about 21 miles total. Nick probably got in about 26 miles this morn!

Later that afternoon, I had a nice mountain bike ride with Audrey and her buds Erin, Kent, and Reese at the Tombigbee National Forest. Trails were somewhat wet, but not terrible. Very pleasant out and we mostly cruised along at a decent pace (considering the difficulty of the trails). About halfway thru, my calves were both getting tight! I think I was a bit dehydrated. Also, maybe my seat was a couple inches low. Raising it seemed to help. Some fun stretches of down hill action here and there!

WEEKLY WORKOUT SUMMARY

Sunday, AM – upper body/ab workout; PM – 5.3 mile run, 33:58.

Monday, PM – 51 minutes on gravel, easy pace

Tuesday, AM – pushups, abs; PM – workout: 2 X 1000m, 4 X 1 minute (1 minute rests), and 2 X 30 seconds (30 second rests)

Wednesday, PM – 40 easy run; upper body/ab workout.

Thursday, PM –  5.3 miles, first 1.5 slow, then the rest at tempo pace (6:15 or better)

Saturday, AM – 12 miles, about 6:45 mile pace in the rain; PM – 2 hour mountain bike ride at Noxubee Hills Trails

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September, still freakin hot, but wait, Saturday was nice!


Local awesome runner Meggan Franks fared well at the 29th World Mountain Running Championships held Sunday (8 September) in Krynica Zdroj, Poland. After having won first place in the Canadian Nationals earlier this year, she qualified to run the World Championships as part of the Canadian team. What a cool deal! She placed 44th out of the 79 finishers representing the best mountain runners from around the world finishing the 9 km mountain course in 48:57. Basically, she ran down one mountain, up and down a second, then finished at the top of the 3rd. Crazy. You can read more about the race at http://wmrc2013.pl/.

Graph of mountain race course Meggan ran in.

Graph of mountain race course Meggan ran in.

Sunday, Joseph  got up an did an upper body type workout. Since I had done one the night before, I skipped this one. Later that day at 6 PM, we met Jorge, Brent, and Will for a run. We did a downtown, airport road, McKee Park, Longmeadow neighborhood type loop. Will had run a total of 20 miles the day before and biked 63 or so that morning, so he stayed with us for about 2.5 miles before veering off for a shorter course of about 5.25 miles. Will is a crazy runner dude, long legged and often all of the place, but lately seems to be working on his form. His arm movement has gotten noticeably better and it shows in his running. From when we first met him a few months back, he has improved tremendously. I suspect his earlier goals for upcoming marathons will have to be greatly revised time-wise!  The rest of us headed toward the airport after crossing Hwy 12. Had to run along side that Highway for a couple of minutes, which is never fun! One annoying dude in a pickup beeped at us with his crazy loud horn. Thanks. When we got to Industrial Pk Rd, Brent headed directly for the park, and Jorge, Joseph, and I headed toward Airport Rd. They were in front of me looking great, but I felt pretty good also. Then, suddenly they stopped, and I caught them. Joseph’s calf had tightened up and he had to walk some. He ended up just walking/jogging to his mom’s place about a mile away. Hopefully, he was just somewhat dehydrated the calf deal is not serious. He was running great the rest of the run. In fact, I thought he looked much better than usual. Anyway, Jorge and I continued to the park, where Brent was waiting on us. We got some water and finished up the last 3 miles or so at a nice steady pace. The last 20 minutes were awesome, as the sun was setting and it finally felt reasonably comfortable temperature wise! According to mapmyrun.com, this was a 9.14 mile route. I finished in 1:03.11 for this, which was about 6:55 per mile. 

9.14 mile campus, downtown, airport, S. Montgomery Rd. loop

9.14 mile campus, downtown, airport, S. Montgomery Rd. loop

Monday, pretty nice easy run with Will and Nick at 5:30 PM. Really hot to start, but not too hard as the guys were doing a 12 + mile run, so were not pushing it too bad. We started at the South Farm turning left on Blackjack toward town, then left  on Locksley Way, left on South Montgomery, right on Lynn Lane  to Mckee Park, and that is when we parted ways. They continued on making a big loop, but I went thru Mckee Park, got some water, then ran pretty fast through Longmeadow, past the high school, back down S.Mongomery, down Locksley and back to the start. My last 3 miles felts pretty dang good! The guys apparently had a good run too.

Tuesday,  a few pushup and crunches to wake me up. At 6 pm, I met Jorge, Will, Zach, and Ravi for a run on the gravel at the South Farm. Ravi had jogged over from his dorm, so he turned around after a couple of miles, at which point Jorge and Zach picked up the pace. Will and I hung together, then I caught Zach who had dropped off from Jorge’s good pace. Man, hot! Jorge ended up running a longer route, at least 7.5 miles. Zach, Will, and I took a shorter way back for probably about a 10k distance or so with Will leading the way for the first mile plus. I hung back chillin for that time period, then after I was pretty far behind I attempted to catch those two muggs. Got them and kept the pace up all the way back. Felt pretty good considering how thick the gravel was and with all the dust. Zach and Will also sped up, and Zach almost catching me at the end. I thought I was pretty far ahead by then, but turned around and there he was! I think we all like challenging each other in our own way. Cool.

Wednesday, 5.3 mile run with Ravi, Joseph, Nick, and Brent. Easy pace, first two and half miles super easy, then somewhat faster. Finished at just over 38 minutes.

Thursday, Got a good upper body ab workout in before work in the morning! At 6 pm, ran easy 30 minutes with Joseph at McKee Park and Longmeadow at 3 PM. I say easy, but it was 3 PM and quite hot! Also, we threw in a 7 minute 2000m stretch in the middle to keep us honest.

Saturday, Morning run with the Boardtown Club. Got up and it was fantastic outside, 58°F!!! What? How? I don’t know, but what a nice change of pace. Both Will and Nick were there, lots of regulars, and a bunch of people I did not know. Cool. Meggan Franks was back from Poland, seemingly not overly taxed by running in a world championship mountain race. She had already done a couple of 10 mile runs since being back. Today’s route was 11 miles, but with lots of gravel! Started out with Micah White, Joseph, and Will. First 1/2 to 3/4 mile was easy warmup, then Micah and Joseph seemed to be easing up the pace without looking like they were. So deceiving! I was able stay with them though, and we were at the first water stop (about 3.5 miles) in just over 22 minutes. Pretty good pace given we started slow. Got and poured water then headed out. Micah was like, “man, what the hell am I doing? I am running 20 miles today, I better slow down some!” So, it was pretty much me and Joseph the rest of the way. Ended up doing the 11 miles at a about 6:28. Not bad at all, other than the crazy assed pitbull that charged at us on Hwy 12.

After the run, I was talking with some folks, and Jennifer Spradling told me that her fast running 9th grade son Lake PRed this past week at a XC meet in Hattiesburg running an 18:19! Great job bud! He runs for Starkville Academy where Nancy Christiansen is now coaching. They also have a new transfer from Pensacola, FL who is running well and was a few seconds ahead of Lake. By season’s end, they could/should be running sub 18 minutes for the 5k. Nice.

Later, I went to Choctaw Lake with Audrey and some scalawags. Splashed in the lake, hike some, ate some. Nice day. Got home and did an easy run with the kid at 6 PM. About 40 minutes. Beautiful weather!

WEEKLY WORKOUT SUMMARY

Sunday, AM – Joseph did upper body workout; PM – 9.125 mile run, 6:55 pace

Monday, AM – pushups and crunches; PM – 45 minute easy run, last half not so easy;)

Tuesday, PM – easy 10 k run with fast last mile on gravelly, hilly roads

Wednesday, PM – easy 5.3 mile run, 38 minutes

Thursday, AM – upper body/ab workout, PM – 30 minute mostly easy run, with a 7 minute 2000 m faster part in middle

Saturday, AM – 11 mile run, 6:28 pace; 3 mile hike later; PM – 40 minute easy run

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Some awesome runners in Starkville, MS


Big weekend for running! Of course, it was exciting watching Joseph dominate the Mississippi College Challenge on Saturday, but lots of our friends also ran some great races. The Starkville High XC team competed in the Memphis Twilight Meet Saturday night. Of course, Kate Mattox, as always, did very well placing 3rd overall with a 18:49 in the 5k. Joseph’s friend Alex Ross had his best race ever running a 17:33 5k and was easily the first SHS runner with Christian Kingery following him at 19:02. I wish the Twilight race had been open to unattached high school runners. But, nope.  I would like to have seen Joseph run that race last night in the shape he is in now. Flat course, 3 laps around soccer fields, and at 9 PM instead at 10 AM! Lots of competition to push you. Oh well. We must all live with politics, and in this case, its the politics of leaving certain people out. Ironically, I could have run in the college/open 4.2 mile race at Twilight, as could anyone but a high school runner. Funny, but not really. Kudus to Coach Ard at Mississippi College for still letting unattached runners in his open meets!  Competition is good guys. Don’t hide from it! Our bud Jorge Villarreal did get to run in the Twilight college race and placed 52nd with a 23:12. Not bad for his first race back since being injured for a while when he was on the MSU team. Speaking of MSU, they did well at the meet with both the men’s and women’s teams winning the meet! MSU’s John Valentine was the overall men’s winner with a 21:08! COOL. His first collegiate XC win. John is an awesome dude. Glad for him.

Also happening this weekend was a 14.2 miler and marathon in Tupelo on Sunday morn. Some joker from Alabama won the marathon with a 2:36. Pretty good for this time of year! But, the overall winning time for the 14.2 mile race was only 1:38, which I am capable of doing on an average day. So, looks like the hotdogs ran the long race. Crazy muggs!

Anyway, enough of the race reports for now, and back to the week’s running.

Sunday, got up in the morn, late in the morn, and did some upper body/ab stuff with Joseph. Lazy, probably should not have stayed up so late! Later, at 6 PM, we met Will, crazy Nick, and Captain America Brent Wallace for a run. Nick jogged a mile or so to get there. That trippy dippy snack head had already swam 5 miles earlier! We all started together, but were going different distances. Brent did a 5.3 mile route, but ran with me and the kid for the first 2.5 miles. Will and Nick ran together and did a 7.5 mile stretch. Joseph and I headed toward the airport and did a 10 mile loop. Our first mile was nice and slow at about 7:40, but we gradually picked it up and finished at 1:04:29. Better than I thought it would be, it was hot! I was super sweaty! SS.

Monday, I pulled out my mountain bike and rode a relatively easy 45 minutes on the MSU South Farm gravel roads and on part of the MSU XC course. Checked out the course, and well, not bad considering cows have been out there for the past few months! Only at MSU do cows share an athletic field with SEC athletes! AMAZING!! So, yeah, at 5:30 PM, Joseph and I met the red headed Zach at the south farm. We headed over to the MSU XC course and after jogging some, we did 5 X 1000m on the lower loop. Planned on doing more, but it was too hot and humid! Man, that was hard today after the 10 miler yesterday and the bike ride today. Joseph was slower than usual, of course we had not done them in a while. He was consistent though. Right at 3:20-3:21 for the first 4, then 3:16 on the last one. I was 3:23-3:24 for the first 4, then 3:18. Zach was 3:27-3:29 for first 4, but he went crazy on the last one and passed me at the end finishing up with Joseph at 3:16. But, boy, that was enough. No energy left!

Also today, Arash Taheri ran a 5k race in Puckett, MS and won his age division. He said his time sucked though, and he did not want to talk about it! Well, even at the 8 AM race start it was hot, so I expect pretty much everyone’s times were off!

Tuesday, Had a nice group run on the MSU South Farm this afternoon at 5:30 with the likes of Jorge and Juan Villarreal, Zach Marsh, Ravinder Singh, Arash Taheri, Tiffany Dudley, Will Kallfelz, and Joseph. Tiffany has not run with us in the afternoon, so it was awesome to have her join us. Back in her prime she was a 4:26 miler! Earlier this summer, at age 30, she set the new female 10k state record for Mississippi! Yeah, she is awesome. But, back to the run. Hot, dusty, hot, gravelly, hot, and hilly! Joseph, Juan, and Jorge were cruising along pretty well, the rest of us were behind them somewhere chilling, talking. Arash, Ravi, Tiffany, and Zach went back a shorter way, probably 5-5.5 miles (not sure really). Both Zach and Ravi had jogged over to the start today, so they were going to get some more miles anyway. The rest of us extended the run some more. As we rounded about the 4 mile mark, Will headed straight back. Will had also jogged to the start from his office! I attempted to follow the 3 J’s for a longer journey.  At about 5.5 miles or so, I saw Juan and Jorge head back to the start for probably a 6.5  mile route, and Joseph was running back toward me. Said he wanted some company. We hit the last loop and got in at least 7.5 miles, which took 56 minutes. The last couple of miles were slow. We were thirsty! His first few miles were good, probably 6:20 or so, as Juan and Jorge said they were running 6:30’s and he was in front of them. But, yeah, I for sure needed some water about halfway thru the run today!

some crazy runner jokers

some crazy runner jokers

Wednesday, Joseph ran on his own today. I met Brent and Nick at the South Farm entrance at 6 pm,  and we did our 5.3 mile route thru town. Nick had already run some, so he only went about 4 miles.  Started out slow for the first mile, really slow! Just relaxing, etc. Then at near a mile, Brent and I picked it up and were running relatively  fast for the next 1.5 miles or so. We were cruising. Brent has gotten super fast lately, that joker is really pushing me. After that fast section, we slowed down to a normal pace for at least a mile, then did a couple more fast sections that were probably between 400 and 600 meters with the in between parts at a moderate pace. Man, I was really hot! This past few days have been super hard with heat and humidity being crazy. Something about the heat at this time of year really gets me! At the end of the run, we were at 35:11. Not bad. A week ago we did the same route at 33:52, which was super awesome, but we started out faster that day, and I think it was cooler. Also, today, we actually were running faster on the “fast” sections. So, it was more or less a fartlek day today.

Thursday, met Joseph, Brent, Will, and Nick at the South Farm at 6 pm for an easy run through the campus, research park, and Cotton District.  Yeah, hot again. Go figure! We started out together, then I hung back and ran with Nick for a few miles. He said we were mostly going 7 minute or better mile pace. Not sure, but enjoyed talking with that crazy rascal. He had already run 15 miles earlier that day! At some point, Nick veered off and I attempted to catch the other muggs. got them with a mile or so to go. At which point, Will was leading the charge. As I caught them, we all sped up without really thinking about it. Pretty soon we were flying along at a nice clip and dropped Will as we continued to lift the pace. Could not shake that crazy air force kid though. Brent is in great shape right now and running well! So, pretty good run all in all.

Friday, Got up in the morn and drove down to New Orleans with Joseph for a Saturday morn XC meet put on by Loyola University called the Wolfpack Invitational. Louisiana has some awesome runners especially from some of the private catholic schools, so we figured that would be a nice race. Met the Loyola coach Friday afternoon as we checked out the course. Figured it would be flat being in New Orleans, but nope. Hilly park! Go figure. And sloppy wet! Some mild construction going on, so he was going to reroute part of it. Ah well. Anyway, walked some of the course, then drove downtown and explored a bit. New Orleans is not a place for me. Not my scene.

Saturday, Arrived at the meet early to get Joseph’s bib number. They had already given it to someone else by mistake, the eventual winner of the college race, also a 5k. I watched the guy run, he was flying. Apparently he is like 30 years old and used to run for LSU. Still looked great. In college he was a 4:02 miler. Despite how fast he appeared to be running, his time for the race was over 17 minutes. Crazy. Second place was to Ryan Archie of William Carey who was a sub 16 minute 5k guy in high school, and Kwame Jackson of Xavier was 3rd. Kwame won the MS College race last Friday with a 16:34, but was close to two minutes slower today.

So, they gave Joseph a different bibb no., and he lined up for the boys varsity race that was set to start at 9:30. Hot, muggy, and by now, after college men’s and womens and high school girl’s races, a super soggy, muddy course. Joseph started out pretty well, and by the first mile was in 1st place, but not by a lot. By a couple of miles it was him and Noah Martin of Northshore, LA. Last year Noah had run 16:03 for the 3 mile, which is usually what the Louisiana kids race. They were followed by three Jesuit boys. Jesuit is a dominant XC school in LA and they always have awesome runners. By season’s end, they will likely have 5 guys sub 17 for 5k. The next half mile was a battle, but finally Noah got a lead on Joseph and finished first and Joseph second. He might have went out too fast on the first mile, which was a tough section that was repeated at the end. Pretty good race, other than he was tired before he started. Noah’s time was 18:04 and Joseph was 18:15. I know that sounds slow, but they would have beat almost all of the college runners today who had slower times, so I have no idea what these times mean. Several college runners told us the course was at least two minutes slow. The 2-5 Jesuit guys were 18:28-18:39, and again, some of these guys are 16:30 or better type 5k guys. Joseph has run courses that were wetter and hillier under 17 minutes, and ran 16:56 very easily last week on a much harder course (that was dry). Today, when he got through, he was super tired from exertion. The coach measured this course with a wheel. Maybe the gator leading the packs today thought it would be fun to add an extra loop! I don’t know. It was a hard race against some good runners and he got second. So, we will go with that! If you look up the results, you won’t see Joseph’s name though, despite them saying they fixed it. Instead, some guy named DeAuntre Alvis.  He did get a a tshirt along with the other top ten though! Also, it says 3 miles, which is was not.

Joseph and Noah around 2 miles

Joseph and Noah around 2 miles

WEEKLY WORKOUT SUMMARY

Sunday, AM – upper body/ab workout, PM – 10 mile run at 6 pm (1:04:29)

Monday, AM – 45 minute mountain bike ride on hilly, gravel roads; PM – 5 X 1000m on grass, 3:18-3:23 pace.

Tuesday, PM – 56 minute run, easy pace, on hilly, gravel roads.

Wednesday, PM – 5.3 mile run, 1st miles slow,then 1.5 fast, then 1 mile moderate, then two more shorter fast sections (400-600m each) with moderate pace between. 35:11 for the entire route.

Thursday, AM – some pushups and crunches, PM – easy run, 45-50 minutes (did not time it, but somewhere around there), last couple miles faster.

Friday, walked XC course, did some pushups and crunches that evening.

Saturday, AM – Joseph did 10 minute warmup jog, then 5k, then cooldown, PM –  after a long drive home, I did a pullup weight workout.

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