Race of the Month - 2015

For 2015, I am running in a race a month. I didn't decide to do this until last week, so we will just skip January. Maybe I can make it up with a double month sometime during the year.

The reason is simple. I need a little focus to keep me on the road. And a race is just what the doctored ordered for some focus. I don't plan on always running hard in these races, but once you are in a race, its hard to back off. It is still race after all.

Springtime won't be a problem here in North Florida; the weather is beautiful and the races are plentiful. The issue will be during the summer months. It is really hot here in the summer, and the races are few and far between. From my initial look, there is not one single race scheduled within 50 miles of my home in June, July, or August. I will find something, even if I have travel a little.

Tentative Race Schedule so far



    • Feb: Bay Education Foundation 5K

    • Mar: Anglers 5K

    • Apr: JL Rabbit Race 5K or Runway Race 10K

    • May: Race Judicata 5K



More to follow . . .

No Easy Day - Mark Owen

I just finished reading No Easy Day - The Firsthand Account of the Mission that Killed Osama Bin Laden by Mark Owen.

Bottom line, I found it enjoyable and recommend it.  


Why did I read it?  Of course, like many Americans, I admire what the Navy Seals were able to do on that night. That kind of mission typifies everything that is admirable about the Seals.  Excruciatingly planned, mission-focused, and prepared for every contingency. I wanted to read a first hand account of the mission in all its horrifying detail; not some press or movie hyped up propaganda.  And from what I can tell, mission accomplished.

What did I like about it?  Those that know me, know I still miss the Navy . . . occasionally.  I suppose that after spending 4 years in school, then another 10 years or so in a squadron afterward, my brainwashing was complete.  No doubt, I do miss the unit camaraderie, the sense of purpose, and the feeling of serving something bigger than yourself.  This book has a lot of that.  And it brought back many memories of hanging with the meatheads in my squadron.  It explains, or at least describes, the warrior culture fairly well.  It's about accomplishments and results, not excuses; adapting to circumstances, not complaining about them  This is a message that is largely missing from our culture today.  And I am glad that some still follow that creed.

What didn't I like about it?  If you are looking for untold secrets of the operation or of special operations in general, this book will disappoint.  The author seemed to make a special effort to make everything a first hand account, and no secrets were revealed.  I knew most of the details of the operation before I read the book from other sources. This book didn't tell me anything new.  It just helped fill in the gaps.  It is also not a literary masterpiece.  It is well-written, but in a straightforward, no nonsense style.  There are not many big words and flowery language describing the author's feelings at any given time or what it is like to be in combat in Southwest Asia.  Instead, the story is very matter of fact, and the cadence measured and steady. I actually appreciate that style, but others may not.

This is the first book I have read in my "Going Dark" campaign.  I plan on taking a little time each day to shut off the computers, phones, and other electronic pacifiers in our lives and, instead, spend some time "in the dark," cut off from the electronic world, with only me and a book or a magazine.  I want to enjoy reading for readings sake again. So far, so good.  Next month, I plan on reading The Cloud Atlas, the book on which the new movie out now is based.  It is supposed to be excellent, and will be my first fiction read in a long time.  I tend to gravitate toward non-fiction.  Wish me luck . . and see you for a book review in another 30 days.

Running for the Bay 10K - Apalachicola

Competed in the Running for the Bay 10K in Apalachicola on Sunday.  It was a decent race, and I ran fairly well.  Didnt quite hit my goal time, but I did set a new personal record for a 10K and finished 3rd in my age group.  Not too bad, although I shouldn't be too excited about the new personal record.  This is only my second official 10K.

It was an early start - 0715 Eastern time - pitch black on the walk to the starting line.  Sun didn't break the horizon until about 30 minutes into the run.  But it was cool and crisp for October in Florida.  Pleasant running weather.

This race is my last tune up before my half marathon in 3 weeks.  Going to do a 12 miler this weekend, then start tapering off until half marathon race day in early November.  I used the Galloway run-walk-run method the whole way.  It worked well.  I felt like I still had energy in the tank at the finish.  Even my wife said I looked a whole lot better crossing the finish line this year than my 10K last year.  When I pressed, she said "Last year you like you were dying coming across the finish; this year not so much."  So . . . at least I have that going for me :)

Here is a picture of the medal I got for finishing.  Looks pretty good.  I like the green.

[caption id="attachment_159" align="alignright" width="216"] Running for the Bay 2012 - front


[caption id="attachment_160" align="alignleft" width="216"] Running For Bay 2012 - Back


 

10 miles - But not a great day

Ran 10 miles today for the first time. It wasn’t easy.

I should be proud, but it wasn’t a great day. I didm give up tough. And I know better days are ahead.

Running a 10K in Apalachicola next weekend. Looking forward to another test. Just a few weeks to go. . . .

9 miles . . and I feel fine.

I ran 9 miles this morning, and in the words of the immortal Michael Stipe, I feel fine.  Tried the Galloway method on the run and it was a big success.  A little over and 11:30 pace, which is what I hope to do for the upcoming half.  Basically, I ran a full mile longer than last week, but did it 15 minutes quicker.  Burned over 1200 calories.


For the first time since I started this quest, I think I am actually going to make it.  One month to go . . .