Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A New Cross-Country Team??

As fate would have it, or my life and decisions that I make with the help of others, some local runners from ODU and myself are working on creating a club cross-country team. This is still very early in the process, but we have some people quite excited about the prospects of getting this thing under way.

The goal is to hit "the ground running" by the Fall with a group of folks who have semi-trained and are quasi-ready for jumping into a few meets at some regional cross-country meets. Hopefully along the way some friends will be made, some students will have fun running together, and who knows maybe someone will learn to enjoy running even more than they do already.

So here come the meetings, phone calls, and other fun going aspects of making this thing happen.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Skiing: Running: Etc

Hope Presbyterian Church does a great trip every year - an annual ski trip to Monarch, CO. The past four years I went on this trip as full-time staff, a position I worked to after a few summers of volunteer help and then internships after that. So it was a little strange this year going as work crew again, but it was fun getting to be around the kids and getting to ski in CO again.

The real reason I am writing this post is because last year on this trip I was afforded with an amazing opportunity. We had two ski trips in a row and I was given the chance to stay behind in CO while the busses carted students back to Memphis so that fresh ones could replace them. A few months out I knew that this was going to be happening so I started looking at different things that Sarah and I could do during that time. One of my thoughts was running, naturally, so I started looking for the shortest race/run I could find anywhere during that weekend.

Of course the shortest run I could find was a half-marathon that started in a little town called Salida, CO. It is also to be expected, which I did not know at the time though I did have suspicions, that the run went directly six miles up at a constant climb. But it was on an abandoned railroad track that went along a gulch through the mountains of Colorado, and that was pretty fricking cool. So after running six (barely plus) miles, having to slow down and stop, throwing up twice, getting passed a number of times by the same people after I started back up and passed them, and feeling overall a little out of my element in the thinning altitude air, I finally reached the turn around point. That was a great feeling!

Another six plus miles down the "hill," as I like to call it, and then there was this last little, tiny really, obstacle that I had not completely forgotten about during my trek and that was a real daisy. As it turns out I had to stop one more time and throw up one last time before flowing down the backside of that baby to the finish line. In the end I recommend that run to anyone - it's called the Run Through Time and it's worth checking out if you're ever in the area around that same time! (Last years race results - only two females beat me - not bad!)

And for now let's look at runs like this and hope that as we engage in seemingly crazy ideas that land us on runs we have no business being on, let's enjoy the ride and have fun getting our butts kicked by the experience... cause that's what it's all about anyway. When I was younger it was easy to get wrapped up in the competition and mark everything as excellent or terrible based off of the results, but even then the experience, the run, was what it was all about!

So... enjoy!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Beardless Running

Well I finally found a run or two that I like in the Norfolk area. I've been missing some of the good Memphis and Birmingham runs pretty badly. A few good routes along the rivers, some along the bay, and some pretty neighborhoods.... I guess when you're looking for your old runs it takes some time to learn to like the new ones. Anyway, this is a good thing I hope. Makes me wonder about other things in my life like that - maybe holding on to the things I have loved so much in the past keep me from enjoying the new spectacles right before my eyes. I don't know, just a thought that occurred to me as I thought about my running here.


Monday, January 10, 2011

Beard Running

Back in Va and running.... nice and chilly this morning, but my greatest ally is my facial hair, aka, the Beard. In this particular photo of the Beard I am showing off the fact that the Bears are also in the playoffs!
This post, however, is not about the Bears, as nice as that is even though we could have a nice long conversation about how that will end. No, this post is about how perfect the Beard is for the cool morning runs. I'm not sure that it would be as easy to brave the easterly breeze coming off the ocean if not for a nice huge manly mane of excellence protecting my face as some sort of ski mask.
In spite of how much I do like having the Beard I am already looking forward to the next step... the Mustache! A few years ago Bryan and I grew mustaches to run the Boston and I can safely say that when I shave my beard this time my mustache will be something even greater than before!
Is it strange that my facial hair is such a big part of my running? I'm not sure that I could rock the stache if I was not actively running - I would feel as a traitor who is still pretending to work for the other side. Hmmm, maybe that guy was right and there is something wrong with me... or maybe runners without facial hair are like little babies. Who knows?