Monday, December 30, 2013

They prolly ain't watching

Starting doubt I'll miss a post or two in Drynuary  but this is the song I would have picked for the new song on my NMN.
It was a good year in most respects and I'm Be Fresh as Hell if the Feds Watching!
To be perfectly honest, I've had a really hard time not singing this around my daughter (she's already primed to chant "clan in the front, let your boots stomp" and "one gold tooth like I'm Sha Shabba Ranks!) So I'm actually pretty proud of that (that she just knows those parts, I haven't taught her the rest). Also, at 3 1/2 she can go verse for verse on the canon. 3 foot assassin with the roughneck business. I haven't listened to this much Tribe since I was 16 (they are remarkably child friendly - Their moms would be proud). Next time you see her, just whisper "hammer time" and I'll give you a dollar if she doesn't start shuffling side to side and yelling "whoah, whoah".
Its not just one way though, at 3 1/2 shes has taught me to appreciate Taylor Swift, Brittney (bitches), and Icona Pop (she loves them like I love 2 Chainz). I'm not linking them though. Its embarrassing.
Anyway...For me 2 Chainz and Pharrel won 2013 musically. And I'm be Fresh as Hell if the Feds Watching. It was a banner year. I figure most wont work out this way.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Its been a long time? I shouldn't have left you...

...without a dope post to step to?
Normally this is the part where I complain it took me 30 minutes to remember an old burner cell phone # so I could log in on this account, but really that is on me. As to those emails I just bulk deleted from the bad...mostly they are from one really intense dude. Sorry/not sorry.
Busy busy busy. Still its my turn to apologize. I have been absent. And while missing coughing up a lung at the TDM (Corner stone of the grand slam in case anyone is wondering, anyone?) or annoying my wife doing crunches in front of the TV didn't get to me, I totally fucked up this NMN. Totally. No excuse.
My apology? Can't promise this, but will attempt 30 days of posting my favorite youtube music videos (cut off the cable - not a bad thing - right now I'm listening to Stevie Wonder live on German TV in the year of my birth. The denim is amazing.)

The prologue: Kanye West Runaway
Just the video:

Anyway. This video is on heavy repeat at hour 70 of the work week. Its dope as fuck, plus its kind of like apologizing to the family that you are neglecting. Also, I don't want my daughter to be a ballet dancer, but if 15 years of devotion and hard work (and parental neglect) could lead to her being En Pointe in a Kanye video (dope as fuck) I might sign off on it (no I won't). Anyway - Come January this is my blog. Then I will no doubt disappear for 5 years and forget my login once again. But I think now that intense dude knows I won't be presenting a paper on gentrification of exurban areas of China in Beijing maybe I'll start using that email address. makes me feel kinda like acid washed jeans. FWIW Stevie's denim is immaculate.

January. The month of music.

Fuck Austin City Limits....Stevie owns Berlin.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Road Marches are Fun?!

A couple months ago, Ocean stood on top of Mt. Spokane.
Not sure what was going through his head but something clicked, and shortly afterword we sat down to plot his training for VT 100 in 2015.  He needs a sub-12h 50M by fall 2014, and though he’s not one to do organized races for training, I convinced him to sign up for Bataan Death March in 2014. Since doing it “light” in 2010 (see 3/2010 entry), I’ve wanted to go back and do it “heavy” (w/35 lb ruck); it would be all the more an experience with a pack, and with a teammate.

After a summer of mental and physical sluggishness, got back into routine so that I wouldn’t break my Quadzilla streak (4th one done 2 weeks ago). But despite running 2 x 50 milers and a 60k/26.2 double in under a month, I’m losing the Battle of the (middle-aged) Bulge. I had dropped 30+ lbs when I started running 9 years ago, but slowly 15 of that has crept back on. Maybe it has something with my diet, like the fabulous Bacon Brunch I had while in New York last month

(yes that’s 3 types of bacon with a biscuit/ bacon butter and unlimited mimosas, bacon mac & cheese,
followed by bacon brownies.... mmm)
OK I just had to find some excuse to post those bacon pics for posterity.

Last week’s Midweek was my first march with 35 lbs since last DC. Ocean and I walked about 4 miles, while Dyno grilled paninis (apparently he didn’t get the road march memo and didn’t bring any shoes). I could not even put the pack on my own back without assistance. Nothing like a 35 lb pack to slap some reality into you. Despite the best intentions of going on evening road marches, did not get back out until Thursday.

The sheet of ice from the morning had nearly melted but it was still treacherous, I had visions of lying on my backpack like a cockroach, with a broken vertebra and unable to get up. The 6 miles with 16 lbs took me nearly 2 hours. The Dearborn steps don’t mess around…. but the view from the top never gets old either.

Not sure when I decided I’d do this week’s run (Ghost of Birch Bay Marathon) with a pack, maybe when Ocean decided he would come along and do his own road march. I picked 17 lbs as a nice round number approximating half the weight I would eventually need to handle, though it was a slight cheat because some of the weight was water. I started 20 min early on my own, concerned I might not meet the 6 hr cutoff on this hilly course.

Shortly before the half, I was passed by 3 of the Usual Suspects, other MM women I see nearly weekly at races, talking about who will be at this year’s ATY, but they stopped to chat and take a pic….

Got through the half sub-3, promising. 2nd time going up the big hill I was passed by Cheri (MM #12) and her friend Rich from N.C. (MM#1776). I put away my latest game of “words with friends” on my iphone and scrambled to keep up with them. They are both in their 60s and hard core. Cheri has been BQing for over 20 years, has done nearly 400 marathons in every state and continent, multiple WS100s and VT100s, and still runs 4:20 marathons. Rich has done over 400, every state and continent 4x including 42 countries, and just ran a 4:10 a few months ago at age 63. They met on the Inca trail some years ago and have done runs on Kilimanjaro and Antarctica together. 

I ask Rich what was his favorite marathon, it was in Nunavut Northwest territories, where he saw actual polar bears on the course! I get to pick their brains about planning the logistics of finding a run to do in Sweden/ Norway the week after Comrades in June. And finally after several miles, he asks about the pack.

“I’m training for the Bataan Death March in March”

As it turns out, not only is he a retired Colonel, but he did the march heavy and in uniform in 2010, the same year I did it, in 7:42. He did at least 4 marathons with a pack to train for it, including a 4:20 finish with a 10.5 lb pack. His advice was to use sugar packs wrapped in duck tape, because the granules are soft/ mold to your back unlike the canned goods they recommend. I tell the Colonel about my fascination with the military, and my agreement with Ocean that in reality, I would not last 5 minutes in the military, as I can’t handle the slightest discomfort. I’m a whiner and proud of it. Cheri shakes her head, doesn’t think people who dislike discomfort do things like run Quadzillas or marathons with backpacks. It’s easier to run with company, managed a negative split with 5:27 finish. It's not as bad as I feared, and it sure felt good to take the pack off. I realized how much better I would feel if I lost that extra 15 lbs. But is it worth a life of no bacon?

Afterward, the Costco Hotdog at the finish line which makes those Northwest Ultras among my favorite low-key events. Ocean has done 18 miles with his 35 lb pack and tells me he feels like he was just crushed between one of those junkyard compactors and can’t wait to curl up in fetal position.  We start to feel human again after Ranger Candy and coffee at the Starbucks drive-through, ready for a Grapefruit ride the next day.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thanksgiving Weekend 2013


Dear Papa Ventoux and Dyno:

Growing up, I was taught movies like Kramer vs. Kramer, Terms of Endearment, Driving Miss Daisy, and Beaches were quality movies. But as an adult, while attending BRS events in Eugene, my eyes were opened to a whole new world of quality movies. Specifically, the whole Fast and Furious franchise. I just heard the news and I'm very sorry for your loss. 

Just got back from Bend, OR with Dyno & Co. Met Dyno's parents for the very first time. Quality folks! We might have to do a biking-swigging (beering) event down there sometime. 

Congrats to Gerald for completing her fourth quadzilla? Also, I just found out there's something called an ultra-quadzilla. 

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Code Brown

First blog post BUI.  Code Brown is a nasty culprit during a race.  At the 2013 Autumn Leaves 50-miler,  I had to hit this porta potty past the turnaround on the course; which added 1/4 bonus miles with each of the two occurrences.  Spent an extra 10-15 minutes with such culprit during the race, but still managed a landslide PR.  At today's Seattle Marathon, Code Brown was attempting to make an ugly appearance at mile-23, but I managed to hold him off until I finished the race and drive home upon which I was left sprinting for the toilet; barely managing to lift the seat up and play Finchie from American Pie.  With Pendleton and Full Sail Amber at my personal beckon, I managed to finish out the day shining.  Now I have just 20 days before my sub-4 hour attempt at the 50k race distance; which was screwed up last year by you guessed it--Code Brown.

Hey Ocean,  pretty flipping cool you want to run Vermont 100 in 2015.  That, along with Gerald's runs out there inspires me to join the party!  Personally I'm burned out on 100's, and would prefer to run just marathons, but I can't help playing roulette with my amigo, Code Brown.