2015 Week 26 Weigh-In! :)

After two months weighing an average of 248 in May & June, I think we’re seeing a breakthrough!  For July, my first weigh-in is 241.8 🙂  I also have a new wallpaper for my laptop for all my weigh ins during the second half of 2015 so, for now there is only today’s weigh-in.

2015 Wallpaper 02 - 2015 (2)

For reference, here is a smaller version of my weight for the first 6 months of 2015

2015 Wallpaper 02 half - 2015

I’m often, if not always, looking ahead with hope 🙂  I have a couple specific goals for July 2015.  One, I’m looking at 100 miles worth of running training.  Two, I am looking for a 31 day running streak which, intimidates me a whole lot more than the 100 miles.  Three …kind of as a byproduct of the running, I’ll be completing my third full marathon in a 70 day time period on July 18th which will make me eligible for the Marathon Maniacs and also a Double Agent.  A Double Agent is a person who is a Marathon Maniac and a Half Fanatic 🙂

I’ll have to keep today’s blog entry short & sweet since I have to run back up to a local gym and get signed up so I can resume my karate training …you know, the karate training that started way back in 1982 🙂  My first karate promotion was May 5th of 1982 and my last promotion was October 18th of 2014.  I have one belt left between me and first degree black belt 😀


52 Weeks of Weigh-Ins

There we go – 52 weeks worth of weigh ins, starting Monday, January 13th, 2014 and ending on Thursday, January 15th, 2015.  …thought i’d throw this blog up during halftime of the Hawks vs Packers game… didn’t happen – under 2 minutes left in that game – freakin’ game of the century here – holy cow!  …  …OT!

After that initial Monday weigh in all subsequent weigh ins were on Thursdays.  Week 32 was the last time I weighed under 260.  From week 33 to 45 I stayed in the 260s.  Battery started going out in Week 46 and was dead in Wk 47.  Week 51 I totally forgot and had to do a catch up weigh in two days later on Sat.

Anyway – looking forward.  I really like how Kyle, who post under Running Large, has running odometer’s for each month of the year dating back to January of 2013.  I’m going to update my Running Log tab to show an Odometer for 2014 along w/ my corresponding average weight for each month.

Below that Odometer table, I want to have a table comparing last years runs to this years runs.  I’m currently signed up and registered for 3 runs in 2015.  Two 1/2 marathons in April and the Rock n Roll 1/2 in October – all runs I’ve done in 2014 so I’ll be able to compare my 2015 times and compete against myself.  Beyond those two, I definitely want to do the Macklind Mile again as well as the Go! St Louis All American 5k – the best 5K I’ve ever run.

For 2014, I ran in 13 of the 14 runs I’d signed up for.  …3 of those “runs” were actually bike rides – Tour de Belleville, Tour de Donut and Moonlight Ramble.

I’ve gotten rid of two of my tabs – the music tab is gone, with several hundred pieces of music on my phone it’s not much of an issue anymore and I don’t need last years marathon training plan but will need something for the 1/2’s coming up in April.  I did virtually nothing for those runs last year except a lot of walking leading up to the runs so it should be pretty easy to beat last years mileage for the beginning of 2015.

I don’t have any specific physical goals at this time – I would like some sub 3 hour 1/2’s in April and I’m fond of a bodyweight in the low 240s – that’s kinda slenderized for me 🙂  For running, the thing I’m most proud of from last year is the 100 mile training month I had in August.  I wouldn’t mind emulating that again and for sure – I’d really like to get in a mile under 10 minutes – that is definitely the Macklind Mile goal 🙂


OK – I also need to blog at least once a week, at least for each of my Thursday weigh-ins.  I’ve already looked up several runs while writing this blog entry and that’s something I haven’t done for a couple months.  The Nashville CMM is $120 for the half – kinda high.  But, the Las Vegas RnR half is sitting at $99.

Mainly, I need to do this for overall health reasons but, it’s a bonus to make it fun 🙂  So …looking at a sub 3 hr half, low 240s bodyweight, sub 10 minute mile and another 100 mile month.

Vegas is interesting.  The first time I ran a 1/2 there, it started at 6:30 a.m. and went up the strip (North) starting at Mandalay Bay then back down west of the strip via Industrial Rd and Frank Sinatra Dr.  There wasn’t much to look at on the way back.   The course in 2015 still starts at Mandalay Bay but, heads South until about even with the Southwest corner of McCarran International Airport then heads back North for about 8 miles then comes back South along the strip and ends at the Mirage.  Oh, it also starts at 4:30 PM Sunday – very different.

Week n - 2nd 12 Week Session zFULL Weeks 52

Karate Promotion & Rock n Roll Weekend!

In this blog

  • Karate Promotion
  • St Louis Rock n Roll Expo
  • St Louis Rock n Roll 5k Race

I think Wednesday morning was the last full night’s sleep I had.  A post karate Thursday night trip to the ER unit at Children’s Hospital for one of my little nephews didn’t end until 4 a.m. Friday morning which normally wouldn’t be so bad except I had to meet some guys at the gym early Friday morning to practice our katas for Saturday testing!  🙂

After I finally got home from the Expo on Friday I slept 6 to 9 p.m. Friday and again from 3 a.m to 5 a.m. Saturday morning….then had a nifty little 5k Rock n Roll run in downtown st louis at 8 a.m. and karate testing starting at 10 a.m. 🙂

Karate Promotion

That test went well 🙂  Out of the 10 people slated for testing today  – I was among the 8 that passed 🙂

From left to right - Sensei Bob Seibert (7th Dan), myself, Sensei Xian (8th Dan), Marty (5th Dan)

From left to right – Sensei Bob Seibert (7th Dan), myself, Sensei Xian (8th Dan), Marty (5th Dan)

The three black belts pictured above made up our testing board.  As a group, many members of the dojo are going to Okinawa, Japan next week.  Usually we’ll get about 3 years advanced notice so everyone has time to save up, this year was a little compressed with only about 8 months notice.  Anyway, I’m pretty happy about this.  I’ve been at this for so long – first promotion May 5th, 1982 so, to look down at that certificate and see 2-kyu was kind of emotional.  One of the higher ranking black belts that tested ended up showing a fair amount of emotion towards the end of her testing as well.  I think she may have been going for her 4th degree which, is the highest that can be tested for outside of Okinawa.

2014-10-18 13.27.13 - Copy (2)

5K – Rock n Roll preview – might just toss some pictures up here – really tired….

St Louis 2014 Rock n Roll Expo

inside the expo, at the entrance

inside the expo, at the entrance

We were allowed to sign up for next years race for $55 and they threw in this extra t-shirt ....can't have too many of those... ;)

We were allowed to sign up for next years race for $55 and they threw in this extra t-shirt ….can’t have too many of those… 😉

the date for next years run is actually 10.18.15 and the shirt says 10.20.15 but, it’s still pretty cool

5K t-shirt & bib

5K t-shirt & bib

1/2 mary t-shirt & bib.  The black band is worn during the 1/2 so, after the run we go to a special tent to pick up our Extra Spinning Guitar pick medal for running Sat & Sun :)

1/2 mary t-shirt & bib. The black band is worn during the 1/2 so, after the run we go to a special tent to pick up our Extra Spinning Guitar pick medal for running Sat & Sun 🙂

back of the 1/2 mary t-shirt

back of the 1/2 mary t-shirt

common logo on the backs of all three t-shirts

common logo on the backs of all three t-shirts

Saturday 5K Race Pics

The Ribbon was really nice on this medal and I've never had one before that said 5K on it like this before :)

The Ribbon was really nice on this medal and I’ve never had one before that said 5K on it like this before 🙂

5k Start Line - I think I heard the announcer say there were over 1,500 people in this race

5k Start Line – I think I heard the announcer say there were over 1,500 people in this race

Looking back at the finish line :)

Looking back at the finish line 🙂

Had to get my picture taken with Captain America!  :D

Had to get my picture taken with Captain America! 😀

and now ….6 full hours of sleep await until tomorrow’s 1/2 🙂  my brother will also be doing the half which is pretty cool  🙂  My goal is to finish within an hour after he finishes 🙂

10 Strategies to Empower Your Life

In this blog:

  • Day 14:  Say No – 10 Strategies to Empower Your Life
  • Week 39 Weigh-In
  • 5K – Karate Testing – Half Marathon
  • Future Plans & Death
  • Week 2 – After Action Review

Start Saying No.   The Day 14 Video is called Say No.  There is a pretty detailed 10 step list which can help a person empower their lives.

A short Yes List and a long No list.

10 Powering and Productive Strategies you can use to empower your personal & professional life.

  1. What strategies, initiatives and activities will you say “No” to?  List the activities that can slow down or prevent progress from happening.  Everything is fair game – nothing is sacred in this exercise.  Simply put, if an activity does not advance you forward, then say no immediately.
  2. What meetings will you decline or delegate?  List every meeting you have in the remainder of the challenge and determine which you will NOT be attending.  Meetings consume large chunks of productive time and most can be declined or delegated to someone else.
  3. What relationships will you not keep?  The way you manage your relationships has an enormous impact on your ability to perform at high levels.  Identify the top three energy draining relationships you are committed to saying No to then, focus on creating strategies to free yourself from each of them immediately.
  4. What competitors will you not follow?  Too much time is lost by following and focusing on too many competitors and so-called gurus.  Identify the top 3 and immediately remove yourself from all of their email distribution list, blogs and other related communications.
  5. What websites will you not visit?  Websites are like magnets & vampires they draw you in and suck away your productive time.  Pull up your list of favorites and delete most from your favorites and keep only the ones of greatest value.  You must institute a “No Surfing” policy and stick to it.
  6. What money will you not spend?  Put yourself on a fiscal diet – every dollar spent should be thought of as an investment towards greater operating income even petty cash.  With this in mind, what things or entire even budget categories will you not spend money on.
  7. What foods will you not eat?  We are all reservoirs of energy and everything we do requires that we use it wisely.  So, it’s imperative that you focus in on your nutritional intake and exercise.  Eliminate any food or drink that compromises your energy levels.
  8. What thoughts will you not entertain?  Remember, that which does not move you towards your goal, takes you away from it.  Therefore, remove those thoughts that are limiting, defeating or downright negative and consciously replace them with thoughts of abundance, optimism and positivity.
  9. What television shows will you not view?  If there was ever a time hog that needed to be slaughtered, television tops the list.  If you stop to think about it those tv hours don’t take long to add up.  Even in a moderately tv watching household, it’s amazing how many hours are spent in front of the box.  The solution — go cold turkey and focus on making huge performance gains.  Take control of those previously lost hours and put them to good use.
  10. What will you no longer tolerate from yourself or others?  Identify the standards you wish to measure your life by and reuse to lower or negotiate at any time or any reason.  No is a tool of liberation and empowerment so use it with absolute authority and conviction.

That’s one heck of a list!

Week 39 Weigh-In

While updating my weekly weigh-in wallpaper for my computer, I realized my weigh-in isn’t until tomorrow BUT …I’ve already done it and we’ll just say it’s close enough for this week.  For today I’m weighing in at 263 pounds which is a 2nd consecutive week of declining weight.  Overall, still maintaining +/- 3% of that 260 weight I started at from a week after my winning weight loss contest so – ….27 weeks of maintaining a weight loss is fine by me!  🙂

Week n - 2nd 12 Week Session Weeks 39-27 - Copy

…maintaining a 50+ lb weight loss for over 1/2 a year – 27 weeks 🙂

5K – Karate Testing – Half Marathon

This should be a really fun weekend….

On Saturday I have a 5K in downtown St Louis at 8 a.m. – and ….as soon as that is over I’ll need to get my butt to the dojo back over in Illinois because Karate testing starts at 10 a.m.  On Sunday, the St Louis Rock n Roll half marathon starts at 7 a.m.   Packet pickup for these events ….I’ll do that Friday – there is supposed to be a wrist bank in the 5k packet that I wear during the half marathon then when that run is finished there is supposed to be a tent where I can get my Spinning Guitar Pick medal for participating in back to back runs 🙂   …just remembered – since this will be my 2nd Rock n Roll half marathon of the year I’ll also be getting some kind of repeat performance medal… I think i have pics of these somewhere …. all told, I’ll net 4 medals from this weekend.

obtained for running back to back races in the same weekend

obtained for running back to back races in the same weekend

obtained for running two Rock n Roll runs in the same year

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HalfMarathonMedal Sat5k_Medal

Future Plans & Death

Running – Here I’m looking at repeating the 26/30 week program I was doing for my 3rd full marathon. It was originally a 26 week program and I added four blank weeks so it would end on the date of my 3rd marathon (November 1st) and, ironically enough, I pretty did exactly what was listed during those extra four weeks …nothing – pretty close to nothing anyway but, I did get in a good 1/2 year of training and made running progress.  When I started that 26 week program it was kicked off by a couple half marathons so I’m going to let this week’s half marathon be the kick off for my next 1/2 year of running.

I will be going back to Kansas City for a week long review for my part IV boards exam which is scheduled for May of 2015.  Part IV is interesting and once you pass you can never take it again and whatever score you get is what you live with for the rest of your life.  It determines which states you can practice in and even which insurance companies will pay you.  It is quite important so – KC review beats out my trip to Wynne Arkansas.

There is a nice half marathon on Sunday, November 2nd which I have run in before – maybe I’ll make that my 2nd kick off half.

Scrolling through media to find those upcoming medals reminded me of several events I want to do in 2015 – Macklind Mile, Tour de Belleville, Moonlight Ramble, Tour de Donut, Lincoln Presidential 1/2 mary, Go! St Louis 1/2, etc.

New Spreadsheet plan – shorter distances but maybe faster times.  I want a much higher percentage of running as opposed to walking … I almost forgot what the Future Plans referred to but I think I remember it mainly pertains to setting up a new program and creating a new spreadsheet.  I think I’ll start a new weigh-in wallpaper with that new spreadsheet.

Death – I’m still pondering this concept – this reality.  I went to another Masonic Funeral last week for a fellow Mason who had been a master mason for 61 years and 9 months.  I remembered during my first Masonic Funeral that one of the higher ranking members of the lodge tried explaining to me that one of the objectives of freemasonry was to overcome the fear of death.  What exactly does that mean, I’ve wondered.  I suppose ….well, I can’t speak for everyone but thinking about dying isn’t a constant thought in my head.  I suppose it’s just ignored but even my awareness level of an impending death but, at this point, I know one thing.  I know partly how my funeral is going to look.  I know there will be Masons present and I’ve heard what they are going to be saying a couple of times now.

I think part of this Masonic teaching kind of embodies that Carpe Diem notion which was briefly mentioned in a previous blog.  Some of the lines from the Dead Poet’s Society such as…. “did these boys wait until it was too late to take one iota from their life of what they were capable of?”  …just paraphrasing from memory there.   or that poem – To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time by Robert Herrick – “Gather ye rosebuds while ye may, Old Time is still a-flying and this same flower that smiles today Tomorrow will be dying.”

I’ll keep learning.  On a kind of related note, it looks like I’m going to be an officer in the lodge come 2015 or maybe starting in December of this year so… still more to learn.

Week 2 – After Action Review (AAR) phone call – 

compare & contrast….  wow, what a difference a week can make.  week 1 of this 100 Day Challenge was fraught with poorly defined objectives and mainly only served to provide a greater awareness of what a loser I was in certain aspects of my life.  Week 2 AAR – huge difference – yesterday was a simple day consisting of work, karate and then coming home and kicking butt around the house with various endeavors but, at the end of it all, I could honestly say that I had lived that day about the best I possibly could.

Anyway, each week at Noon (CST) there is an AAR phone call with Gary, the guy that made up this 100 Day Challenge and in that 40 minute phone call he mentioned a list of 12 things to help improve our lives so, I took notes in this blog to share with others who might be interested.  My list has 14 items but I wasn’t able to completely differentiate between all the items so …there is a two item bonus in my list.

Also – I mentioned previously that this was a $147 course but there was an offer extended for me to be able to add up to 3 people to the program for $47 each.  Not that I would pay that but, if anyone is interested I’ve still got two extra people I can add to the program.   Leave a message – paypal me $47 to my email address of dukowitz@gmail.com and we’ll set you up.  I’ll probably shoot out a mass email to the 300 or so Masonic brothers in my lodge, maybe one or two of them will be interested as well.

There are 77 days left in the 2014

  1. Elevate your conversations
    – High Achievers talk about Big, Bold, Better Ideas
    – Average People talk about common events
    – Little People talk about other people – gossip, etc
  2. Elevate your Beliefs –
  3. Elevate your Actions
  4. Elevate your Attitude – expose your mind to a better life.  expose yourself to excellence – surround yourself with it
  5. Elevate your expectations by demanding more from yourself and others.
  6. Elevate your discomfort by elevating & challenging your discomfort zone.  it’s inconvenient to workout when you’re tired – reality is it’s convenient and easy to make an excuse.  it’s inconvenient to make a good meal and convenient to buy fast food.  expose yourself to discomfort.
  7. Elevate your value by raising the bar and going the extra mile.  the difference – go the extra mile –
  8. Elevate your gratitude by elevating your consciousness.
  9. Elevate your future by focusing on key priorities.  What we think, know or believe is of little value compared to….
  10. Elevate your joyfulness – it’s perfectly fine to have fun in everything that you do.  joy is a virtue that hides in plain site
  11. Elevate your reputation by delivering exceptional results.
  12. Elevate your network
  13. Elevate your Focus by saying No and Setting Boundaries.  Have a short Yes list and long No list.
  14. Elevate your Fun by laughing more and worrying less.   outlook not determined by circumstances (reminds me of Victor Frankl)

Your thoughts your words and your actions & beliefs can help improve your situation.

77 days left in this year and Each One Counts

– Everything Matters –

Everything Counts

Your thoughts, words, action, beliefs are like an elevator that can either help bring you up or take you down.  Well said, Gary 🙂

Boldness and Audacity

In this blog

  • Boldness and Audacity – Day 2 of the 100 Day Challenge
  • Week 26, Day 1 Run
  • Karate
  • National Boards Part IV
  • November 1st Full Marathon in Wynne Arkansas

Boldness and Audacity – Day 2

Have you ever noticed who gets the most respect and the most rewards in life?  It’s not the wallflowers, it’s not the thumbsuckers, it’s not the people that sit back and wait for others to do things for them.  Those who achieve much in life do so with a spirit of boldness and adventure.  Boldness is a fundamental right and a pragmatic reality.  These people are able to challenge and question the existence of a comfort zone.  They are willing to try new ideas and attempt the seemingly impossible.  They thrive under pressure and take risks lesser people are too afraid to attempt.

  • Boldness is the act of responding to a situation in a manner that may be viewed as daring to some, but is essential to effectively addressing the issue at hand.
  • Boldness is a strategic tactical approach to a given situation.
  • Boldness also involves taking risk.  When you decide upon a specific course of action boldness demands that you execute it aggressively.
  • Boldness does not mean being rude, arrogant, insensitive or even a bully
  • Boldness is a spirited word that eloquently describes bravery.
  • Boldness is not an inherited trait.  It is a characteristic that will blossom with determination.
  • Boldness comes from making valued decisions and moving forward for what you believe in.

When will your finest hour come and how will it arrive?  Do you really think it’s going to materialize without a supreme act if confidence, audacity or boldness?

What bold initiatives are you planning for today?

Today’s Challenge:  Act with boldness in every situation.  Speak up, act up with complete confidence and expect that things will go your way.  A behavior of boldness will help propel you today and everyday beyond what you might imagine and otherwise achieve.

This video then closes the same way as yesterday by reminding us…

There will never be a day that will not require
Personal Integrity.

Boldness and Audacity – my interpretation

Boldness reminds me a bit of courage.   My original thinking was there isn’t much on my list of things to do which require any great amount of courage, just things that need to be done but then I started to fill out my list of 10 prioritized activities, commitments and Deadlines for the day and noticed that if i double clicked on an entry, it would bring up what I last wrote down from yesterday.  Well ….I have 6 items left over from yesterday that never really got done.  I was basically trying to participate and get started with this program.  Yesterday was work, dinner with the family and doing my blog.

However – there is one item on my list which scares me.  Again, it’s nothing I haven’t done before.  well… the components which make it up are all things I’ve done before so, that would be one area where a little boldness or courage could be useful.

Week 26, Day 1 – 2 Miles

Before I worked on my 10 item list for today I wanted to take action and get something done.  I need to get my running going again.  I had 100 miles in August but only around 16 in September.  I still need to update the Running tab on my blog w/ my miles, times and average weight.


The path I run on is 1.5 miles long and, prior to this year, it had been about 20 years since I’d ran that path non-stop so I was pretty happy that I could head to the park even with my lapse in running and still crank out a bit over a lap non-stop.


I guess karate is another area that could use a little audacity.  In two weeks from tomorrow I’m scheduled to test for my Ni-Kyu brown belt.  I’ve been back once since my Part III study stint this past Tuesday.  I’ll be available for 4 more workouts before that testing which occurs on October18th after my 5k Rock n Roll 5k over in St Louis.

If I am to pull it off, this is something I’ll need to put on my 10 item daily priority/commitment list.  I know I have enough talent for that rank and probably a few ranks higher because I’ve been doing it for so long.  Simply making sure i have the necessary katas and yakusokus memorized will be enough to get me through and promoted to the next rank.

Part IV National Boards

This is an exam I’m looking at taking in May of 2015.  There is a review session which runs from Oct 11th through Oct 19th.  I would miss the 18th due to the 5k & karate testing and miss the 19th due to the Rock n Roll half marathon.  But, I can make 5 other sessions.  It’s been a little while since I’ve looked in anyone’s ears or eyes with my medical equipment so the experience could be very useful.  Pending passing Part III and getting a licence in the state of Illinois, I may then register for the NRCME – and become a Nationally Registered Certified Medical Examiner.  I guess that’s another thing I need to add to my goals list 😉  🙂

November 1st Full Marathon in Wynne Arkansas – 

I’ve done great with my running this year and have progressed a lot but not to the point of completing a full marathon the way I would like to complete it.  I don’t have a goal of completing a marathon – I’ve already done that …twice.  I want to complete one in fine fashion.  Say, a 4:21 time or better – even under 5 but, I’m still a ways from that kind of shape and condition.  I probably have an option of swapping over to the half marathon but, even then I would still need to make some travel arrangements.

….i need the 2015 schedules from NBS for Part 3 & 4 reviews …… Part IV review in Kansas is compressed into 6 days ….5 nights would do it there … about 6 months before the Part IV exam….

Wynne Arkansas …. for a full marathon, i’m on board but for a half?  Do I want to spend the time & money for that?  With karate, like I’ve said, I’ve already got the talent and just need to put in the effort.  For a full marathon … I’m just not that good yet.  I think around 6 miles is the longest I’ve gone non-stop.  I know there’s some biomechanical deficiencies with my right piriformis muscle that are exacerbated with the longer distances and needs to be improved upon.

There are a lot of things like that.  If we don’t push ourselves then “as is” is usually good enough but, when you’re pushing yourself then even small defects can be enunciated to exceedingly painful proportions.

The most noticeable advancements I could make with my running in the next four weeks wouldn’t be from gains made from running but rather by a reduction in weight.  Right now, I’d have to say I’m on the fence regarding Wynne, AR 🙂

Moonlight Ramble


Saturday was kind of a wacky day.  I had originally planned up getting up and hitting the road by 5:30 a.m. and *thought* I could knock out 14 miles and be back home by 9 a.m. and have an hour before karate.  Well …my car had been acting up and by Friday night had gotten my full attention so I needed to get it into the shop by 8 a.m. on Sat so …. I woke up a little before 3 a.m. and hit the road to knock out those 14 miles and still be home in time to get my car in the shop!

Originally Planned Route

Originally Planned Route

The reality is shown below….


Do you see that arrow?  That’s me walking up and down the street looking between houses to find one without a fence at 3:30 in the morning so I could cut across a field and get back home ASAP …

As you can tell from the Average Speed (3.3 mph) I was barely walking let alone jogging but, I initially figured it was a long route and I would eventually kick in with some running (never happened).  I was in bed by 10:30 the night before so I got 3 sleep cycles (a sleep cycle is about 90 minutes long) but, I’m thinking 5 sleep cycles would have been better plus, the last meal I had was around noon the previous day since I had to work after that and by the time I got home it was too late to eat.

I did get a nice scale shot the other day – my first dip into the 240’s since the last week of my contest back in April!  🙂

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If nothing else, I did prove to myself that I can get up early and head out the door.  3 a.m. is pretty ridiculous though.  It is what it is.  For the most part, I felt like a phone with a 3% charge left on it.

I did make karate at 10 a.m. and sensei said something kind of interesting at the end of the workout.  He gave a lot of examples which all centered around the notion that if you had a fire that you wanted to put out then you wouldn’t pour gasoline on it, would you?  Of course not.  But, in the realm of human behavior, we generally don’t want to be mad or angry but often times when we are angry or upset – instead of working to put that fire out, we keep adding gasoline to the fire brewing in our mind instead of taking some control and doing something constructive to put it out.

This reminded me of some of the philosophy stuff I’d written about previously, the stuff from Nikolai Berdyaev who mentioned that living the good life is frequently dull, flat and commonplace.  I tend to think that is most true with people who don’t have many aspirations in life in which case I imagine any excitement would be welcome to at least add some texture to an otherwise drab existence.

Start of the Moonlight Ramble

Start of the Moonlight Ramble

Instead of starting a block or more behind the starting line, I did what I did at the Tour de Belleville and started a block ahead of the starting line and, once again, saved over an hour of my life by not having to wait to get started 🙂  The Moonlight Ramble is a ride and not a race so, there are no timing bibs.  The picture shows the very first riders (behind other people standing and waiting to jump in, same as me).  Those are the premier or elite riders and they pay a little extra to start at the very front.  I waited for all those speed demons to pass on by then jumped in myself.  🙂

I gotta admit, my legs were still pretty tired and, for the most part are perpetually sore from all the running so I did something I’ve never done before and that was to take the short route.  Something I noticed being in the first wave of riders is that there aren’t any fun or goofy riders.  The pics below should help explain what I mean by that.

MoonlightRamble_WebPics_13__1600W 520d46bb6c9f6.preview-620

Every year is a little different route than the year before and this year’s route was very different.  We actually crossed over two highways and at the split between the long and short route was a big sign used in highway construction to indicate the split.  I was tempted to take the long route but the short route proved to be very, very interesting for me.  Most riders, especially in the first wave that I was riding in opted to take the long route but, I could see a dozen or so riders making the turn to take the shorter route.  I quickly passed most of the other riders until I came upon a couple and chatted with them a bit while we were grinding out an uphill incline.  Once that flattened out thought – I kicked it up into about 22nd gear and starting pumping those legs and easily pulled out ahead of them.  I never did see them again.  In fact, I didn’t see anybody, I was riding completely alone and there was nobody else ahead of me.  At one point when I think I was supposed to turn, a cop was yelling at some driver so I think I missed my turn there and then I was semi lost but figured I was only a couple blocks South of where I needed to be.  I took a guess on one of the roads and hoped it would take me back where I needed to be and it did.  I was actually the very first person to finish the short route of this years Moonlight Ramble 🙂

Short & Long Route

Short & Long Route

My Route

My Route

I had my earbuds tucked into my shirt while I was talking with the other riders but, once I was alone I put one back in and had Stevie Wonder was playing then and that helped me kick up the pace a bit.  I maintained a pace over 16 mph for the last 3 miles of the race.

Things are a lot different at the finish when you’re the first one there ….

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July Recap – August Projections & W17D3 Run

In This Blog:

  • July Recap
  • August Projections
  • Week 17 Day 3
  • Weekly Weigh-Ins
  • Spinning Guitar Pick Medal

Overall, this was a very good month for training.  I had 16 running workouts in July compared to 17, 20 & 18 running workouts in April, May & June respectively But, I did have two biking workouts including the Tour de Donut which was 35 miles.  In terms of my training averages ….

Average Stats 2014-07-31

  • Total Miles increased about 50%
  • Average Distance increased almost 100%
  • Average Duration increased over 100%
  • Fastest Mile Average increased about 3%

It’s nice I was able to double my distance and duration while maintaining my average speed & pace.

I’ll have 4 full weeks of training in August, Weeks 18 through 21 of my program.  The mileage will increase by 2, 3, 3, 1 miles in each of those weeks over my last week in July which doesn’t seem too bad – quite reasonable and certainly within the 10% rule (not adding more than 10% per week to the weekly mileage)

However … there is a rather daunting 140 mile total scheduled for August.  I’ll really need to take this one day at a time.  After all, it still is only 4 days per week that I’ll be training and the Saturday Long Runs will be the only new training distances for me.

August Travel – I’ll be out of state for weeks 19, 20 & 21 of training.  The short & medium runs will take 1-2 hours but, these long runs of 16 & 17 miles have me a bit concerned.  I catch a break in Davenport because it looks like board reviews will be taking place while school is in session so those reviews will be 5-11 p.m. through the weekdays and I can move my 16 mile run from Sat to Friday since the weekend review sessions are always 9-6 p.m.

Overland Park, Kansas is a little different since all the days are basically of the 9 a.m. -6 p.m. variety so I’m thinking of breaking up my 16 mile run scheduled for the 23rd into 8 miles on Friday and 8 miles on Saturday.  Even 8 miles is going to take me the better part of 2 hours so maybe I’ll have to get out the door and hit the road by 5:30ish a.m. on Fri & Sat.  I know from experience that I’m dead after 9 hours of reviews and if I hit the runs in the morning it might help me to pay better attention during my board reviews.

Chesterfield, Missouri – I’ll be commuting each day to Chesterfield but that also adds about an hour each way so the 9-6 review shifts are more like 8 to 7 p.m.  I think I might split things up like I’m planning in Overland Park, KS and break up my 17 mile run scheduled for 8/30 and do half early morning Friday and the other half early morning Saturday.

I guess I’ve done harder things.  Sept 6th is an 18 mile run which is being replaced by a 50 mile bike ride and the following Saturday is my Part III Boards Exam ….I have 20 miles scheduled for that day.  That’s over 4 hours and probably closer to 5 hours on my feet.

Weeks 24, 25, 26 & 27 are blank …they don’t exist because my training program is only for 26 weeks and the final 3 weeks are for tapering.  On my spreadsheet I simply have myself repeating Weeks 22 & 23  twice to fill in those 4 weeks.   I’ll know better when the time gets closer as to what might be best.

Week 17 Day 3 – 4 miles
This was a heck of a run.  It’s the 4th time in the past 2 weeks that I’ve covered 4 miles in training and those first two times had exactly the same time of 56:52.  I was 16 seconds slower on my third attempt but tonight, I had to get my 4 miles in after karate so, it was a late night run BUT I finished the darn thing in 53:16!  That was 3 min 32 seconds Faster than my previous last two attempts.  I had a 13:16 average pace and …keep in mind, I’m a 260 lb man so, my legs are hauling some weight around with them.  Anyway, that was my best training pace ever for any distance over 2 miles.  Back on June 9th I had the same pace with a 2 mile run.  I’m guessing the hour and a half karate I did before hand was a good warm up 🙂

Well, I’m tired and need to get to bed – I’ll hit the Weekly Weigh-In and Spinning Guitar pick medals some other time.  In short – I weighed 261 this week so, I’m basically the same weight as I was the week after my 12 week weight loss contest ended back in April.  I signed up for a 5k on October 18th which is the day before the St Louis Rock and Roll Half Marathon but …by doing both there is a really sweet looking medal with a Spinning Guitar pick I can earn.

Other than that I might preview a 5 mile run i have coming up this Sat over in Washington, MO.