- Death Valley Marathon Race Report
- Lehigh Valley ViaMarathon Race Report
- Peak2Brew Relay Race Report
- DIY Rearview Bike Camera for ~$40
- Lake Placid Ironman 2016 Race Report
- Mio Link Heart Rate Monitor
- Running, Table Saws, and Amnesia
- Boston Marathon Race Report
- Paris Marathon Race Report: The Good, The Bad, and The Meh
- McKinney Resolution Run Race Report
A couple of months ago, one of my running buddies, Rick, asked: “Hey, Phil. I’m going to run the Death Valley Marathon in February. Wanna join me?” It seems like an innocent question, doesn’t it? So I said, “Sure!”
Little did I know…
Previously on Phil’s Blog:
Hot weather, poor training, and 10 extra pounds all contributed to me not BQing at the Paris Marathon in early April. Meanwhile my friend Kevin’s training was on track to BQ at the Eugene Marathon at the end of April. With peer pressure mounting, I toed up to the line at Boston three weeks after running Paris with every intention of BQing so I could join Kevin in 2017. But the factors that led to my demise in Paris — hot weather, poor training, and 10 extra pounds — were still in play at Boston and I didn’t BQ there either.
Peak2Brew: 10 friends and 1 stranger, 2 vans, 36 hours, and 230+ miles.
Peak2Brew was the first relay race that I’ve done. I discovered it by accident about a year ago and become intrigued because the route ran past my wife’s bakery in Old Forge, NY. After a lot of negotiation, I managed to recruit 11 of my fellow Plano Pacers to run it with me. (My most effective argument: “Guys, it ends at a brewery. What’s not to love?”)
In this post I’ll not only tell you WHY I wanted a rearview camera for my tri-bike (oh, the horrors!), but also show you HOW to make one — for less than $50 to boot!
Part 1: Why Would Anyone Want a Rearview Camera for Their Bike?
The Short Version: Runners >> Cyclists. Pie >> Cake. Ergo, a rearview camera.
The Long Version: By in large, runners are an easy-going and friendly bunch of people. They'll listen intently with genuine interest as someone describes their losing battle with blackened toenails, joyously accept a glob of vaseline on a popsicle stick from a perfect stranger at a race, and paw through their race-day swag with the same enthusiasm as a 3-year-old on Christmas morning.
Cyclists, not so much.
I finished my second Ironman: Lake Placid.
I did not PR. (Ha! Not even close! I was 30 minutes faster at Boulder which is at frikkin’ 5000 feet altitude. On the other hand, Lake Placid has 6800 feet of elevation gain. So that may have had something to do with it…)
As the second oldest Ironman event in the United States, you can read lots of good articles that describe what to expect and how to train for it (like this one, this one, or this one). I’m not going to rinse and repeat that story in this blog. Instead here are some tidbits that I learned and in the telling I’ll reveal how I got pink eye (I think that’s a first for a triathlon injury), clocked in the head by a competitor after the swim, and chalked up yet another toenail suicide.
A couple of years ago I read a blog about the amazing, unsurpassed, and revolutionary benefits of using heart rate zones for training. (It had to be true, right? It was on the Internet.) So I dug out the heart rate monitor that came with my Garmin Forerunner (that had been living in a commune with some dust bunnies behind my dresser), strapped it around my chest, and went for a run.
One of the things that I love about running is that all that you really need to do it are a pair of shoes and some running shorts. It's the ultimate travelers sport. And nothing lets you visit a new place better than seeing on foot as opposed to watching it flash past through a car window.
Spoiler alert: I didn’t BQ at the Boston Marathon this year.
Which is a pity. Because now I have to find another marathon to BQ before September…* And I'm already committed for an Ironman at the end of July and a 234 mile relay race in August. So my training calendar is pretty full… But, hey, this isn’t a blog about me, it’s a blog about the Boston Marathon so let’s get on with it.
First, let me say that the 2016 Paris Marathon was not my best marathon. My goal pre-race was to BQ (3h 37m) and that’s what the pace band on my wrist spelled out. Although I was within one minute of my target time at the 1/2 marathon mark, by mile 15 I’d come to grips that a BQ was not in the cards and my new goal was to finish in less than 4 hours and not embarrass myself. By mile 21, my new, new goal
I ran the first ever McKinney Resolution Run (a half marathon) last year. I loved the cotton hoodie they gave out as race swag beyond all reason, so I decided to run it again this year. :-) It’s an early January run and it’s a great excuse to get back into shape. I really let my fitness slide after I ran the Boulder Ironman last year and I felt that having a race on my calendar would be good motivation to get back on
Boulder is a great place to run an Ironman. It is, after all, the unofficial triathlon training capital of the US. The folks in Boulder embrace the race and the city itself is bike friendly with tons of healthy food restaurants. Boulder 2014 was my first Ironman so I’m not an expert but I thought it was well organized, the volunteers were simply awesome, and the ambiance was wonderful.
Austin was my 3nd triathlon and my first 70.3. Like a lot of triathletes, I’d started as a marathoner who switched to cycling while injured. One thing led to another and suddenly I was a triathlete. :-) Here’s what happened at my first long distance tri…