Monthly Archives: November 2013

Meggan Franks third at the XTERRA world trail running championships in Kualao Ranch, Hawaii.


Sunday, Got in a decent upper body workout late in the morn. A few sets of pullups, curls, ab deals, and some bench press. Five sets of bench press with 180 lbs, with fewer reps the first couple of sets, then 21 reps for each of the last three sets. Not bad. Later that afternoon, I met Zach, Brent, and Ravi at the South Farm for a run. Brent and I did 5 miles at 7:30 pace. Ravi did a couple with us, then headed on his way, and Zach ran about 4.5 miles with us before looping back out for another 5 miles or so. Nice. Pretty chilly and windy, especially on the way back, but not too bad.

Awesome news from our local running front. Canadian born Starkvillian Meggan Franks turned in another impressive trail run this weekend. She was the third female  finisher at the XTERRA world trail running championships in Kualao Ranch, Hawaii. Read that again, “World Championships”… Pretty freakin’ awesome. In looking at the results, her husband Houston Franks, head XC coach at MSU, paced her and finished up at 24th overall himself. This was a 21k trail run and they finished at about 1:40:24 and 1:40:26 for a 7:32 average mile pace. Great work guys!   Read more about it at  http://runningmagazine.ca/canadians-dominate-the-podium-at-world-trail-championships/ and http://www.xterraplanet.com/xduro/championship.html.

FranksHA

Meggan and Houston Franks competing in the Xterra race in Hawaii

Monday, Not much exercise today. When I say not much, I actually mean none.  Rained like crazy! Joseph was out of town visiting Millsaps College in Jackson, MS and hanging out with the runners there. Andy Till, the XC and track coach at Millsaps, is a super nice guy, so I am sure that he had a great visit.

Tuesday,  Still raining like crazy!  Got home about 6:30 pm after a long day of working on my ant web site at work. Fun though. So, yep. After all that, I could have used a run, but it was cold, dark, and raining. Forget it. Instead, I did 5 sets of pull-ups (23-26 reps each), and no, I am sure they were not marine perfect. But, they worked very well! As I may have mentioned in the past, doing a pull-up or chin-up to the full hang does not make any sense to me. I understand that for comparative purposes, this may be advantageous, but for a long term exercise scheme, I think its a bad idea. A lot of pressure on the shoulder joints. So, I go pretty far down, then up. Anyway, awesome pump from that.  I felt like a crazy lumberjack or something. Then, I did 4 sets of bench press. I put a 45 lb and 25 lb plate on each end, but I am not exactly sure how much my bar weighs, so the total weight was probably 170-180 lbs. The bar is the length of an Olympic bar, but lighter. Maybe 30-35 lbs? I guess I need to find a used Olympic bar for which the weight is known. If you have one, mail it to me. Thanks. On the other hand, it is pretty irrelevant how much weight I am doing. It is more important that it was a good workout. Some progress on the bench lately for sure, as I got 25 reps for each of the first two sets, then 22, and 21. Not bad. Until I recently obtaining this used bench and weights, I had not bench-pressed anything in probably 4 or more years, at least with a long bar. A couple years back I regularly did dumbbell bench-press, but can’t afford our university gym anymore. Sucks. Thats another story. But, at one time, not too many years ago at about the same weight I am at now (180 lbs), I could bench 185 lbs 35 times in a row, and 225 lbs for 22 reps. That was pretty good for me. In fact, I would say that is pretty good for anybody. Not very good for running fast 5ks though, but in reality, I am not really a runner anyway. When I was in the best shape of my life in my 20s and early 30s, I weighed between 155 and 160 lbs. At that time, I could occasionally run a 5k under 15 minute pace while during that same period of time I could do 3 sets of 10 reps with 255 lbs on the bench. Not bad, and especially considering that bench press was not really my strongest lift. I would say my strength was more in my shoulders and legs. At 5’9″ Legs for sure. I could dunk a basketball behind my head. Very cool. The last time I dunked a ball in the gym was at about age 42 or 43, and it did not feel good to my knee at all. I loved dunking a ball. I don’t love what it did to my knees. But, I can’t really complain too much, as they are still holding up. Ah, the joy of being young! Back to the workout though. Finished up with some 40 lb dumbbell curls and various crunches. Feeling swell now. Swoll even.

Wednesday, Whew! Chilly today! High was about 38°F and winds around 15mph. Not like the temps you the folks in the north have to deal with, but for here, its cold enough. At about 3:30 PM, Joseph and I got a run deal in out here in Sessums. I ran a mile with him, then he ran 5 more as I biked, then I got one more mile of running in. First mile was at 7:30 pace and the one after my bike ride was 6:25. Man, it was cold on that bike, even with gloves and long pants. Joseph’s 5 mile route was done in 32:45. It was nice to get back in the house where I had a small fire going on my wood stove and chili cooking in the crockpot! Oh yeah baby!

Thursday, Thanksgiving. Even so, or especially because of that, I got in a pushup, pullup type workout deal in at about 8:30 AM. Not bad. Later, had an awesome Thanksgiving meal with the Sheridans. Thanks!

Friday, Joseph did and upper body workup at about 9 AM, and I also did a few things that I missed the morning before. Nothing crazy. Later, that afternoon, we headed to the Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge arriving at about 2:30 PM. Joseph did a 12 mile run today as I biked along. Pretty nice out, 50°F more or less, but it started getting chilly as the evening approached. Nice place to run, but with hunting season now here, we made sure that we had on some bright orange stuff on even though we were on the main road. Can’t be too careful. Anyway, its been a weird week running-wise for Joseph with the XC race this past Saturday, then the visit to Millsaps, then crazy rain. Essentially, this was only the 2nd run for him this week! So, yeah. He did alright though. Averaged 5:53 per mile with the first mile being 6:20, then the others all under six minutes except the 6th mile, which was 6:12. Probably should have skipped the XC race on Saturday, as basically all it did was throw off training for a couple of weeks. Oh well, I think he and Alex had a good time anyhow. Break down today was 6:20, 5:42, 5:53, 5:44, 5:54, 6:12, 5:55, 5:45, 5:52, 5:55, 5:55, and 5:36. Throw out the warmup mile and the 6th mile, and he had 10 miles at 5:49 average. Need to get 13.1 at 5:43 or better for the goal of a 1:15 half. Coming along and looking very do-able at this point.

Saturday, Got up, not too early, and ran 3.3 miles with Joseph at a 7:20 average pace. Basically, just an easy recovery jog for him from yesterday’s 12 miler. Pretty chilly early, but quickly warmed up. Looking like it will be almost 60°F today, and sunny. Beautiful day!

WEEKLY WORKOUT SUMMARY

Sunday, AM- upper body workout; PM, 5 mile run on hilly gravel road at 7:30 mile pace

Monday, Punked out.

Tuesday, Awesome upper body workout.

Wednesday, PM – 1 mile run, 5 mile bike, 1 mile run; Joseph, 6 mile run.

Thursday, AM – upperbody workout

Friday, AM – upperbody workout; PM – 12 mile bike; Joseph 12 mile run at 5:53 mile pace.

Saturday, AM – 3.3 mile jog, 7:20 pace.

Leave a comment

Filed under Running

USA Track and Field XC Junior Olympic South Regionals


Sunday,  Kind of a rainy, dreary day. Decided not to wait for a run, instead Joseph and I just ran out here in Sessums around 3pm. We live a good 10 miles from town, and if its a day when it looks like nobody is likely to show up, I figure saving 20 miles worth of gas is the better option. So, after Joseph’s really nice run the day before, I told him to do about 5 miles at an easy pace, no watch. I jogged about 2 miles, then biked a few myself. Ended up being a decent afternoon.

Joseph before run

Joseph before run

Monday,  At 4pm, it was just me and the kid again. I think the college boys might be getting down to the wire with some classes! We went over to McKee Park and jogged a couple of miles down Industrial Park Road. Then, I got on m bike to pace Joseph in Longmeadow neighborhood. Today he did 1 X 2000m at 6:30, 1 X 1200m at 3:59, and 4 X 2 minutes at sub 5 minute pace. Jogged around some more,  stretched and headed out. Pretty nice day, a bit chilly. He will run pretty easy the rest of the week with a Saturday race coming up. After the run, the sunset was beautiful! Check it out!

sunset at McKee Park

sunset at McKee Park

Tuesday, Met Ravi and Joseph at 4 pm for a run on the South Farm. Joseph took off ahead of us, and Ravi and I ran along together for about 25 minutes at a 7:30ish pace. Then Ravi ran home, and I jumped on the bike, went back and met Joseph. Later, got in an upper body workout at the house. Wednesday, No run today for me. Joseph did an easy few miles. Thursday, Joseph and met Nick Pettit and Ravi at the South Farm for an easy run. Ravi jogged over and did a couple with us before heading back. He probably got in about 5 or 6 total. Nick, who just completed his 2nd marathon in less than a month, was out for an easy stroll, which was fine by me. We all four ran together at a super easy pace. Nick, Joseph and I did a 5 miles plus a bit route. Pretty day. Saturday, Got up early to take Joseph to the USATF XC South Regional Junior Olympic Championship in Clinton, MS. We picked up his friend Alex Ross, who also wanted to run. That was cool, as Joseph was Starkville High’s XC MVP the previous two years and state champion last year, and Alex was Starkville’s MVP this year and 5th place finisher in this year’s state meet. Because Joseph did not run XC this year, they have not had a chance to run together in quite some time. The race today was held at Choctaw Trails, which is also the state meet course, so they knew the course well. As they are both seniors, this gave them one more opportunity to run the course. Alex had a very good fall XC season, finishing up at the state meet two weeks ago with a personal best of 17 minutes flat on a very difficult course. Joseph, who has been recently training for a half marathon, was in no way prepared for a 5k distance, but figured since the meet was in MS, that he might as well do it. I don’t believe it has ever been held here before. But, the new Madison Central coach, Coach Groll, is a big supporter of USA Junior Olympics and was active in Louisiana with it when he coached there. Now that he is in MS, he is trying to bring some enthusiasm. Well, weather-wise, it could not have been much worse! Pretty cold, raining, and windy. The course was a slime pit! It was just cold enough to be unpleasant. Probably about 48°, but the rain and wind made it teeth chattering cold. Everything was wet! Alex and Joseph planned on running in shorts and singlets even so.  Joining them from Starkville were Walker Mattox and Carys Snyder, who both run for Starkville High. Carys only got to run at Choctaw Trails once this year, so wanted another opportunity at the course. Walker basically came down to run with her.

Carys Snyder, Walker Mattox, Joseph MacGown, and Alex Ross

Carys Snyder, Walker Mattox, Joseph MacGown, and Alex Ross

Running XC, and really any race, is all about lining everything up. Sleep, food, warmup, etc. It all needs to flow in the right way. Driving down, it was pretty obvious that both guys were tired. Ok. But, we had food, and they got stuff in their systems at the more or less right time. So that was something. We arrived in time for Alex to register and for them to get their numbers. Their race, the 17-18 age group 5k, was to start at 11 AM. After sitting in the car for almost 3 hours, they were both pretty tight, so they did a light and loose jog for about ten minutes. josephalex3 Later, at 10:30,  they did a faster  10 minute warmup, loosened up some more, put their spikes on, and did a few strides at about 10:55. Well, they noticed that some of the kids at the start looked young and asked them what was up. Apparently, the races were way behind and this was the 13-14 age group race! AH. Sucks.

Joseph and Alex before the race

Joseph and Alex before the race

I am sure that Coach Groll announced something about the race times being way off, but we did not hear it with Alex and Joseph warming up elsewhere and me likely in the truck or elsewhere. This is pretty unusual, as I have rarely been to a meet that was this far off of the schedule. Doubly bad, because the weather and course was only getting worse as the day went on. So, yeah, they were now soaking wet from warming up in the rain, shivering, and all for naught! They went to the truck, grabbed a blanket and huddled in there for about twenty minutes. Got back out, and warmed up again! Finally, the race started.  USATF regionals are really small in our south region (MS and LA), so they ran the 15-16 and 17-18 boys and girls all together. Even so, there were not many people, although they were all pretty good. And, Louisiana always has some great runners at these things. Louisiana, unlike our backwards state of Mississippi, actually welcomes club teams, and as a consequence, they have a steady supply of quality runners year after year. This year was no exception, and a young man named James Turner from Monroe, LA easily won the 17-18 male division, with Joseph coming in 2nd and Alex third. In fact, this was the order already by the mile and it never changed.

Mile 1

Mile 1

Joseph, James Turner, and Alex Ross

Joseph, James Turner, and Alex Ross

I know that the Turner kid ran about 16:45, which for him was slow, as he runs about a 15:20 three mile. But the course was pretty rough today. I have no idea what Joseph and Alex ran, as there was no time clock and no results were posted. I know it was well over 17 minutes for each of them. Joseph was probably 20 seconds ahead of Alex, who was followed fairly closely by three others. Nobody ran particularly fast, and mostly I think they just enjoyed the crazy, mucky, windy day celebrating the camaraderie of battling the elements together. Even with the rough conditions, I would have thought Joseph could have easily won this race with the way he has been running, but it was not that important really. In fact, his pace was probably slower than his average pace for the ten miler that he did last Saturday, albeit on a dry day.  The top ten from this race qualified for the National Championship on December 14 in San Antonio, TX. In a race like this, the main thing is don’t do something stupid and get hurt!

Joseph's singlet after the race

Joseph’s singlet after the race

Anyway, after another hour or so, they gave out some medals, and we finally got to change out of our wet clothes. Man, my toes were cold!!! Headed to find food and opted for Mexican, before again driving through the rain back to Starkville!

Joseph at about the 1.5 mile mark. He looks pretty happy

Joseph at about the 1.5 mile mark. He looks pretty happy

In other running news, several of our Starkville Striders buds ran in the Turkey Trot 5k and 10k, which was held at MSU. One year, I actually won the 5k and Joseph won the 8k (now 10k)! That was awesome. This year, our trippy red headed glow master Zach Marsh won the 10k! Way to go! And Brent Wallace came in 2nd place in the 5k with an 18:21! Pretty sure this is his best 5k race. He has not really even been running all that much lately since I hurt my calf. [Perhaps I should explain that. I hurt my calf, so have not been running as much. Apparently, when I don’t run, some of these slacker punks also follow suit!] So that was pretty derned good. Max Roethig and John Mooney also ran the 5k, but I don’t know how they did. Awesome dudes!

Crazy Zach Marsh

Crazy Zach Marsh

Leave a comment

Filed under Running

Entomological Society of America Conference in Austin, Texas


Well, I don’t really have a lot to write about concerning running and stuff this week because I was in Austin, TX for most of the week at the 2013 Entomological Society of America Annual Conference. This was a week packed full of presentations by some of the brightest entomologists out there and their up and coming students. It is always cool to see some of these folks who I know through emails and other correspondence, but have never met in the real world. I study ants myself, which is a very popular group, so I got to see hear plenty of talks about them. Man, those ant researchers are CRAZEEE!

Downtown Austin is a fairly nice place to have a conference like this, and whenever I got the opportunity, I walked around the downtown area, along the river, as well as a local park. Usually with a friend or two from the meeting, but sometimes on my own. Tall buildings abounded!

tall buildings

tall buildings

The Colorado River, which was nearby, had a wonderful pathway alongside of it. Austin is a pretty cool town, a little too big and trendy for me, but with some scattered natural areas such as this place. One thing that I really liked seeing was the numerous walkers, runners, and cyclists. They were every where and could be seen at all times of day and night. This trail was no exception, as it was packed. I, however, did not run down the trail, but walked with my coworker JamesLewis. At some point, we found a park like area where we collected some ants. Have not got a chance to verify the species, but for sure got some Forelius, probably mccooki, some Pheidole sp., and a few others. Cool.

Park area where I collected ants

Park area where I collected ants

Another day, we  visited Zilker Park and grabbed some ants there. David Cross joined us there, and was happy to find some Solenopsis geminata. Whew, but yeah, over the week, I walked a lot! Did not run at all. I drank way too much on two nights of my stay, and basically did not drink the rest of the time simply because I had to recover from those two nights. I did not have to buy my own drinks either, which is probably why I drank too much come to think of it! Scientists are really crazy when they all get together at these conferences! To wake myself up each morning, I did pushups and crunches. Helped a bit.

Austin1

James Lewis in the bottom right corner

I ate a lot of great food while in Austin, and of course, about half of it was Mexican food! Very, very tasty. The highlight of the trip for me, though, was visiting a most awesome CD/record store that James took me too. I picked up a few Blur and Guerillaz CDs. Nice. During the week, I got many comments from people about some of the shirts I wore including a Greatful Dead shirt, a WEEN band tshirt that I designed, and an entomology shirt I designed. People loved those shirts and did not mind telling me! Funny.

I mentioned last week that a New York Times sports reporter contacted me about a story she was doing about neon colored running apparel. She had found my running blog and asked my opinion on the subject. Of course, I was but one of several people interviewed. Anyway, the story came out and can be read at: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/12/sports/running-in-the-dazzle-of-neon.html?_r=0 Pretty cool!

While I was away, Joseph said he got some running in on his own. Easy run on Sunday and Monday, tempo on Tuesday, easy Wednesday, and repeat fast 3 minute interval type deals on Thursday. He also said he got quite a few pushups and crunches in during the week. He said that it was a homework filled week though and he did seem beat when I saw him on Friday.

Nice to be back in town. What with all the eating and stuff in Austin, I feel like a slob! Yep. So, I got up Saturday morn and did a bunch of pushups, pullups, curls, and ab exercises while listening to Blur and the Guerillaz! Mid afternoon, Joseph and I headed to the refuge for a run deal. He ran 10 miles while I biked. He said he was still sore from Thursday when he apparently had a good day, but neglected to do any post run stretching. But, even so, he had another nice day today. We were thinking about doing 12 miles, but since he will be running in the USATF XC South Regional Meet next Saturday, we thought 10 would be sufficient this weekend. He ended up with a 5:52 average mile pace for the entire 10 miles. On a wet and dreary day, on sore legs, that was pretty good. Especially with the first mile being 6:31. Splits were: 6:31, 5:35, 5:54, 5:46, 5:48, 5:52, 6:05, 5:41, 5:44, and 5:41. Take that first warmup mile out, and thats a 5:48 pace for nine miles. Nice. Basically, his aim was his half marathon time down to about 1:15 or so by January. Ironically, he really did not start his half marathon training until after the New Orleans Jazz Half in October, which was basically a “see where you are at that time” run. Since then, he is been gradually working on speeding up the longer run, getting slightly longer tempos in, and throwing in some repeat 1000-1600m intervals at race pace. Those tempos and longer distance speed workouts really seem to be helping his long runs, the pace of which has been dropping dramatically week to week. Four weeks ago, he did 10 miles at 6:30 pace, the next week was 10 at 6:15 pace, the next week he did 11 at 5:58 pace, and this week, of course, was 10 miles at 5:52 average pace. When you consider that the first mile of each of these runs was done slower to warm up, this was pretty good. I hope he can continue this trend for another month. If so, he could have a pretty nice half marathon in January. Have not decided which one to do yet. Maybe the Blues in Jackson, MS, or possibly one in Pensacola, FL. The Frostbite half here in Starkville, which is the only half he has run, is also a possibility. I wish it were a certified course though:(

RefugeLake1

Bluff Lake at the Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge on a dreary November day

After he ran, I went for a 5k run, with Joseph doing part of it with me as a cool down. Started out slow and evened out at a decent pace for an old injured punk. Finished up at a 6:47 average pace. Calf felt pretty good until the last .3 miles, when it tightened up a bit. Not terrible. As I was finishing up, Will Kallfelz came cruising by on his bike, probably doing about 50 miles. Awesome.

about to bike

about to bike

Leave a comment

Filed under Running

Mile Repeats on Gravel and Joseph has great 11 miler


Sunday, At 4 PM, Joseph and I met Brent, Max, and Ravi at the South Farm for a run. Another pretty day, but chilly enough for tank tops. I started out with the guys, but only did 2 miles. Then got my bike and added about 7 miles. As I was heading back for the bike, I passed John Mooney and Brian Laird, who arrived a bit late. I cruised along with them a bit, then we crossed paths with Brent and Joseph. Brent was running pretty good today as he was at the 4 mile mark first. Apparently Joseph, who was supposed to be taking it easy today, was actually doing that, as he was there a bit later. Brent took the shortcut back, and John and I joined Joseph for the longer loop. With John in tow, they were gradually picking up the pace from the 7:20-7:30 pace they had each been doing earlier and started hitting 6:30s to 6:40 pace. With about 1.5 miles to go, John teamed back up with Brian. He said he ended up with about 9.5 miles total. Joseph finished up and for some reason continued picking the pace up dropping to 6 minute, then 5:20, and finished the last half mile at 4:50 pace. By the end, it was getting pretty chilly, but we hung out shooting the bull with Brent and Max before calling it a night.

Monday, We met John Mooney and the missing link Nick Pettit at the Research Park for some mile repeats. I rode my bike to pace them. Actually, Nick, who is still recovering from his marathon, mostly took it easy, and wisely so! We ran on the North Farm gravel roads today, and there were quite a few other folks running and walking their dogs. Of course, as always on the North Farm, there were plenty of the idiot dog owners who ignored the “dogs must be on leash” rules clearly stated on the signs. Being a research farm, the fields have various pesticide trials going on, and these owners don’t seem to mind that their dogs are running through and disturbing research and potentially drinking contaminated runoff. But, the real problem is when you are running and/or biking down the road and large dogs jump on you or stop in front of your bike tire. People. I have two dogs. But, that does not mean that its ok to have my dog jump on another person. I almost ran right over a boxer today. Anyway. People. Please. Have your dogs put you on a leash. Or something like that.

The run went well I guess, I mean, I was on my mountain bike! Easy enough. As John, Joseph, and Nick (Nick only did one of the mile repeats, and he had already run 8 miles earlier) got going, Lucas came running by hand slapping everyone. Crazy kid and his awesome Hispanic afro almost knocked me off my bike with that high five! Joseph started out like a gangbuster, too fast, but settled down finishing up his first mile at 5:18. John was 6:20ish. Near the end of the first mile, Juan Villarreal came speeding by, said he was almost through with an 8 mile run.  Joseph’s next two were slower, 5:37ish average; John’s were 6:22 and 6:29. The rests between each were 2-3 minutes. Then they did 4 x  400m with 400m jogs between each. John was 1:20-1:22 more or less and Joseph was in front by a good bit, not sure exactly what they were. Then one more mile, Joseph was 5:43 on this one, maybe a little tired from the 400s. John, who was not going to do another, did a good percentage of it, then met us, and we headed back to the car. We met Nick there, who, after the first mile repeat, pretty much then just ran/jogged at an easy pace for a while. The sun was quickly setting, so we dropped Nick the Beast dude off at his dorm and headed home.

Got home and did several sets of pushups, pullups and dumbbell curls. No run for me left me with plenty of energy! After, I checked my email and saw a note from a New York Times sports reporter who had found my blog and wanted my opinion on the trend of neon colors in the running world. Cool. I responded to her, and then had a call from a college coach in Kentucky who wanted to talk to Joseph about running for his team next year.  Crazy man.

Tuesday, Got  a follow up call from the New York Times reporter about the neon running apparel story. We talked about running for quite a while. Especially here in the South.  Later that day, at 4PM, I met wild man Max the babe magnet and Lucas the Dominican wonderboy at the South Farm and we traveled through the farm roads; them on foot, and me on my mountain bike. They casually ran along at about a 7:30 pace for an easy 5 miles. Nothing crazy. After leaving those trippy mugs, I headed home and did some pullups and benchpress. Joseph did his own easy run this afternoon, so did not meet with us.

Wednesday, Got Joseph at 4 PM and we headed to McKee Park. He was going to do a tempo of sorts today in Longmeadow, so I jumped on my bike to pace him a bit. He got in a good 1.5 mile warmup run, then started the tempo. Too fast at first, still needs to tone that down, then a bit slow, then about right. He ended up with 4.3 miles at 5:45 pace. Near the end of the run and upon completion, we ran into the Starkville High kids and Steve Shaffer as they ambled about. Just a few days before their state meet. When I got home, I was still very hyper from the lack of a run. So, I ran along my trail for a bit, then did several sets of pushups, dips, dumbbell curls, and dumbbell military presses. That helped some!

Thursday, Met Joseph and Kamau at 4 PM at the South Farm. Haven’t seen that crazy bugger in a couple weeks. He and Joseph did a 5 mile run at 6:35 pace thru town. I took my bike out on the gravel roads of the farm and headed toward the MSU XC course. Pedaled pretty hard to get there, then jumped off my bike and did 3 X 1000m runs on the bottom loop at about 4 minutes each. Pretty slow, but my calf did not hurt today. So, I stopped before it did (very unlike me), then headed back to the truck. Kamau and Joseph were waiting on me.

Friday, Headed out to the refuge with Joseph mid afternoon so he could get a long run in today, as I will be out of town tomorrow. It was again a beautiful day, and I again rode my bike to pace him. He said he was pretty tired, and to be fair, we don’t usually run on Fridays, so he was probably out of whack a bit. He seemed to think he was running slow, but actually ran quite well. The idea, whether good or bad, is to add a mile each week to this “long” run and to try to do it at a better pace each week. So, the first time we went to the refuge two weeks ago, he did 10 miles at a 6:30 pace. Last Saturday, he again only did 10 miles, but at  6:15 average. Nice improvement. Today, he did just over 11 miles and averaged 5:58 per mile. Nice. I hope this trend continues. His splits were 6:14, 5:58, 5:59, 6:05, 6:11, 6:16, 6:02, 5:59, 5:53, 5:48, and 5:28 for the last mile+. Very nice finish at the end with 4 sub 6 minute miles. When we got back to the truck, there were strange drawings and words scratched into the dusty rear of my Tahoe. The culprits were obviously Brent and Max, based on the fact the they wrote their names! I guess we just missed them. Bummer dudes. We also saw our bud Nathan Gaudin and a friend of his as they were finishing up a 16 mile hike.

WEEKLY WORKOUT SUMMARY

Sunday, PM – 2 mile run, 7 mile bike; Joseph, 7.6 mile run on gravel, 2nd half faster

Monday, PM – 8 mile bike, upper body workout; Joseph, 1 mile WU, 3 X 1 mile 5:29 pace, 4 X 400m with 400m jogs, 1 X 1 mile @ 5:43, half mile cooldown.

Tuesday, PM – 5 mile bike ride, upper body stuff; Joseph, easy run

Wednesday, PM – 6-7 mile bike, short run on trail, upper body stuff; Joseph, 4.3 mile tempo at 5:45 pace

Thursday, PM – 7-8 mile bike, 3 X 1000m; Joseph, 5 miles at 6:35 pace

Friday, PM – 11 mile bike ride; Joseph, 11 mile run at 5:58  pace.

Leave a comment

Filed under Running

Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge


Sunday, Joseph and I  met Max and Brent at the South Farm at about 5 pm. I rode my bike, and they ran the South Farm roads. Nobody went crazy, even Joseph took it relatively easy. Good idea after the good 10 miler the day before. After the run, Juan and Jorge stopped by for a bit to say hello. The cool Colombian kids!

Max and Brent sporting the Starkville Striders skull and cross bones shirts

Max and Brent sporting the Starkville Striders skull and cross bones shirts

Monday, Joseph ran and I biked while he did some mile repeats out here in Sessums. Short breaks between each of 3 mile repeats, which were 5:26, 5:28, and 5:30. Then he did a fast 400, then two 800s at about 2:30 each. I biked and timed stuff. Nice day.

Tuesday, Got in a quick workout in the morn. Woke me up.

Wednesday, Me and the kid headed to McKee Park. I jogged a couple of miles with him as he warmed up, then I biked with him during some tempo stuff in Longmeadow. Actually, I ran mostly by myself at about a 7:30 pace, as Joseph was in front of me. No pain in the calf at all for the duration of the run. But, I did not want to push it, so the bike was next.  Joseph started out very good, first mile was probably too fast, 5:10, then 5:35 average for the next 1.5 miles. Then, he started slowing some, so I told him to stop a bit and walk. Then, he ran another 1.25 miles at 5:45 pace, then jogged back to the car. A  bunch of SHS runners were hanging out at the water fountain where we were parked.

Thursday, Joseph and I met Ravi at the South Farm for a run. Ravi ran over from his apartment. Halloween! We met early because of impending storms, and ran at 4 pm. It was already raining pretty good. I started out with them, but only for a bit because I did not want to push the calf too much. By a half mile, Joseph was well in front of both of us. He probably got in 5 or 6 miles. I was not running a lot slower than Ravi early on, 7:30ish, and felt pretty good. Then, at about 2 miles, super ouch! Fine, then suddenly not fine. So, a couple of miles at about 7:20-7:30 pace, then 3rd mile at 8 minute plus pace. I would not really call it a run on the way back, just a slow shuffle. It is amazing how when you have an injury, you try to find any possible way to run. Move your legs a different way, hit the ground differently, etc. I finally made it back, soaking wet! Some rude college student drivers on the farm today too, driving university vehicles and not slowing down or moving over on these super muddy gravelly roads! Thanks. One guy in particular was  annoyingly close. Ravi eventually made it back, then headed back to his apartment. Joseph showed up a few minutes later. By then, it was pouring rain in a sideways direction. Joseph also mentioned the guy in the MAFES truck who splattered him with mud both entering and later leaving the farm. Joseph also had problems just finishing up the run as a bunch of vet students ran the stop sign almost running him over. Thanks guys.

Got home and I did a really good upper body workout. Took at least an hour to finish. Did several sets of bench press, curls, dumbbell shoulder presses, pullups, some pushups, and various ab exercises. My calf was sore, but nowhere near as bad as it was after running on it last week. Did not ice it or anything. So, maybe some improvement!

Friday, Rest day for me. And food. With the reduced running, I have been working out a bit harder. As a result of not burning as many calories and also working out harder, am a good 10-15 pounds heavier than a couple of weeks ago! Some fat, but some muscle too. Before I strained my calf, I was down around 165 lbs, but am now closer to 180! My arms are bigger again. Doesn’t take long to pump back up. Crazy.

Saturday,  Several races this morn, of which some our running buds took part in. Of them, Meggan Franks again stood out as she placed 9th with a time of 2:49:28 at the Minneapolis Marathon! Also, our friend Robert Morgan ran a super awesome PR of 18:33 this morn at a 5k in Vardaman, MS. I can’t believe how much faster this crazy cat is running compared to just a few months ago when he was a slug! Way to to go Robert!

Drove out the Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge mid afternoon for a run with Joseph. I took my bike. Super windy out there! But, a gorgeous day with temps around 65°F. This is a great place to run with the lakes and woods to look at. Not too many cars either. Joseph was doing 10 miles again today, but we went a different direction this week heading past Lake Loakfoma. 5 miles out and then back. The 5 out were not too bad, but we had wind in our faces the entire way back, and it was hard even on the bike. Despite the wind, I thought Joseph had a good run as he ended up with 1:02:32. If it was not so windy, I think he would have been under an hour today. At one point at about mile 9, the wind was crazy. Not surprisingly, this was one of his slower miles. Breakdown was 6:45, 6:25, 6:24, 6:04, 6:05, 5:56, 6:14, 6:18, 6:27, and 5:54. I was pretty surprised that he was able to run any of his miles under 6 minutes against the wind, so that was cool.

When we got home, we both got in an upper body workout. He did pushups, pullups, dips, military presses, and I did curls (40 lb dumbbells, 15 reps, 4 sets), bench press (4 sets of 15-18 with 180 lbs), 3 sets of pullups, and some ab stuff. Ah.

WEEKLY WORKOUT SUMMARY

Sunday, PM 7 mile bike; Joseph, 7 mile easy run

Monday, PM – 6-7 mile bike; Joseph 3 X 1 mile at 5:29 pace + 1 X 400, 2 X 800 at 2:30 pace

Tuesday, PM – upper body workout

Wednesday, PM – 2 mile run, 6 mile bike; Joseph, 2 mile WU, 2.5 tempo + 1.25 mile tempo

Thursday, PM  – 3 mile run, upper body workout; Joseph 6 mile easy run

Friday – rest

Saturday, PM – 10 mile bike, upper body workout; Joseph, 10 mile run at 6:15 pace, upper body workout

Leave a comment

Filed under Running