Nov 26, 2007

The Super Computer Sale used to come by Minneapolis twice a year. I've built two computers, purchased a monitor and many other small parts at the shows. Now it is no more. Their website has the show scheduled as 'coming soon' for the last 5 months. Its probably for the best. I should probably start buying my computer components at legitimate prices from legitimate retailers, not someone who sleeps in a motel and drives to a different city each week. I will miss it though.

Rest in peace shelves filled with used monitors, boxes full of old mice, hard drives for 70% off. RIP Bloomington Indiana (or was that Illinois) salesman whose memory would lock up, angry Asian fellow who yelled as he took my cash, and slimy salesman who sold Joe not one but two video cards that didn't work. RIP boxes marked "Adults Only", special corner section for semi legitimate car audio parts, five year old Palm Pilots for sale and negotiating five dollars off a CD burner. I will miss you all.

Nov 21, 2007

My favorite is the blue socks.

Nov 19, 2007


That was my time at Philadelphia this weekend.

Tori and I drove down Saturday morning and discovered just how many tolls there are between Long Island and Philadelphia. We met Kris and her roommate downtown and wandered around the city, seeing Independence Hall and the Liberty bell and the Masonic Temple and all the other goodies. After a pasta dinner downtown, it was time to drive back to the hotel and get ready for the next morning.

5:30 came pretty early Sunday morning. I downed a bowl of cereal and jogged to the start. I've never been to a race this big, and it was amazing at the start. Everyone (15,000 runners I'm told) were warming up, stretching and making their way to the start. I'm sure to a higher being it was like watching ants scurry around. I lined up just before 7:00 and then the starting gun went off! and I waited... and waited.... and five minutes later I started moving ..... and two minutes after that I crossed the starting line. Apparently I lined up a little further back than I should have, because I spent the first 5 miles weaving around slower runners. Once I settled into a decent pace, I was really feeling good.

The course went downtown, through historic Philadelphia, back up to U Penn, by the Zoo and up and back down the Schuylkill River. The first twenty miles went well. The weather was great for running, forties without much sun, so I was able to enjoy running without many distractions. The rest of the race was a little different. When I saw mile marker 21, I remember thinking 'Ok, it should only take 45 minutes from here'. In my mind, though, I remember the last five miles taking about two hours. Once I hit the last mile I was able to pick it up and smile as I ran through the finish. My ankle is angry at me today... I guess its expected to struggle through the end of a marathon your first time.

Overall it was an excellent experience. The race was well organized, Philadelphia was good to visit (Tori loved the city), and I think I trained and prepared pretty well. When I do another one of these, which won't be a while, I think I can put in a much better time. Between the slow start and two unscheduled pit stops, I think I could easily make up 20 minutes. A little more training and I could finish with more in the tank, too.

Thanks to Tori, Kris and Sarah for cheering and giving me Gu handups through the race. Just six weeks 'til its time to start training for bike races.

Nov 7, 2007

No posts lately

I haven't been updating much because, frankly, I don't have much to write about. Outside of commuting, my time on the bike has been next to nil. And marathon training is just about the most boring thing one can write about: "I ran 8 miles today. It was hard. I thought about stopping halfway through, but then I didn't." Don't get me wrong, I enjoy running, its just not enjoyable to hear about. Two things I have learned about running:

Running is HARD, and in a different way than biking. In a bike race, I can see an average HR of 175+. If don't think I could ever see a HR of 165 BPM while running. My legs would fall apart first. I suppose if you can hold that kind of heart rate, you'd be Paula Ratcliff.

I usually disdain lifting weights for endurance training, especially in season. Lifting isn't really analogous to endurance; if you can squat 500 pounds, you can't necessarily run more than a mile, or even win a sprint. Training is specific to a given activity. The only time I'll really lift is in the winter, when its too cold to do anything outside.
That said, I had a nagging injury in my hamstring and calf during September. I started lifting just an hour a week and its completely gone away. Maybe its only applicable to running, or my specific case, but maybe weight lifting year round is good injury prevention.

T-minus 11 days. says to expect sun and 50's, but who knows.