Wednesday, May 30, 2012


This is a video to provide you some motivation.  The next time, you think you are unable to lose your weight, get in shape or run the time or distance you want to, think of this guy and what he accomplished.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Too Hot, Too Fast, Too Far

Yesterday I was feeling great.  I ate well, my legs felt fresh.  I felt tonight would be the night I could go out and have a time run.  Would I be able to officially break the 40 minute barrier for my 5 mile run?

Living in the desert environment, from about May 1 until November 1, we receive no rain.  It is all sun.  It is finally starting to get warm.  This weekend was the warmest we have had all year.  I am not usually affected by the heat.  I keep hydrated.  I spend a little bit of the afternoon in the hot sun to get acclimated to it.

Usually, by nightfall, it starts to cool down and there is a nice breeze.  Not last night.  It was still into the 90’s when I went out.  As soon as I got out there, I thought, maybe I should put the watch away and try again another time. But I had my heart set on it.  I started out for the first mile.  I did not take music, because with the heat, I wanted to pay attention to my body and not artificially go too fast.

I was flying.  When I reached the first street, it was not even 9 minutes yet on the watch.  I was at a 7:30 or 8:00 min pace.  When I got to the next check point, it was 12:30.  This was a spot, where if I used to make it in 15 minutes, that was considered a fast run.  I then hit the 2 mile mark in about 16:30.  The heat was starting to get to me. I knew I would need to slow down at some point, but I did not want to. I made it to the turnaround spot in 21:30.  This was a new record for me.  I thought I should cut it short and only go 4 miles, but my stubborn self, decided to turn around and go for 5 miles. 

I slowed down.  I was keeping track where the water fountains would be if I needed to refill.  I kept pouring water on my head and drinking as well.  Once the watch hit 35 minutes, I knew I would not have the record tonight, so I turned it off and slowed down my pace to keep going. 

I was not as disappointed as I thought.  I knew I can do it based on the first half the run and slowed down so I would not hurt myself.  The first half was completed in about 8 min miles and the second half in 10 min miles.

If I did not have the watch last night, I would have been ok.  I would have gone a lot slower at the beginning and slowed down during the run.  On days like yesterday, the only purpose of the run is to get out there, not break records.  I also need to start freezing my water bottle when it is half filled.  I find this keeps me with cold water throughout the run. 

With the summer heat right around the corner, I find I may be putting the watch away and will time myself come fall. 

How do you adjust your running when the weather gets hot?

Friday, May 25, 2012

The Weight of the Nation Part 1

This is part 1 of "The Weight of the Nation.  I will be posting Parts, 2, 3 and 4 in the upcoming days.

To win, we have to lose. The four-part HBO Documentary Films series, The Weight of The Nation explores the obesity epidemic in America. For more information on The Weight of the Nation, visit

Sunday, May 20, 2012

So Close!!!

I hardly ever time myself anymore when I run, but once in a while I have a run that I say to myself, I wish I had a watch.  Last night was one of those runs.  The day started like a normal Saturday morning.  I took the kids out for 2.5 hour walk with their stroller. We go exploring the city looking for new playgrounds to play on. 

When we got back, we had lunch and fruits for snacks.  Afterwards, we played around the house, and then it was time for dinner, bath and bed.  This time of year, Saturday evenings are my favorite time to go for a run.  There is hardly any traffic and there are many people out running, walking, or kids outside playing.  I was feeling so good; I felt I could run 10 miles.  My wife said, just go out and see how you feel.  Don’t overdo it.  She was right.  I decided, I would either do 4 or 5 miles, depending on how I felt at the turning point.

The temperature could not have been better.  The sun was warm, but there was a nice cool breeze to compliment it. Usually, I leave the IPOD at home for safety, except for Saturday nights. I grabbed my IPOD and walked out the door. As I am walking to my starting point, I waved to a neighbor.  Then I took off.

I felt good.  My legs felt fresh.  I knew I was moving very quickly, when I just about made it to the top of the first hill and the first song (Right Now, by Van Halen) ended.  Usually, I am halfway up.  Once I reached the top, I still felt great.  I got to the second hill and kept on going.  At the top of the second hill, I still felt fresh.  The road then flattens out and I kept going.

Next I reached my turn around point.  Usually, when I reach this point, Eye of the Tiger by Survivor comes on. The IPOD was still playing the song before it (You give love a bad name by Bon Jovi).  My decision was made. I turned around and ran the 5 mile route.

Maybe today would be the day I would break 40 minutes for 5 miles. I have only ever done this once.  It was years ago and on the treadmill.  I kept chugging along, feeling great.  I was conquering the hills like an ant climbing an anthill.  I made it up the last hill and made my turn to the home stretch.  Then the IPOD froze.

It froze with 4:11 into, Crazy game of Poker by O.A.R.  I was anywhere from 30 sec to 2 minutes away from the finish line. I am not sure when it froze. I still finished strong.  I felt great.  I knew this was a personal record for 5 miles for me; I am just not sure how fast I ran.

When I got home, after I stretched, I went through the IPOD and wrote down the times of each song. I got to 35:10 before the last song.  If I add the 4:11 on the IPOD before it froze, that comes to 39:21, with anywhere from 30 seconds to 2 minutes left. Even if it was 2 minutes, 41:21 for 5 miles would still have been a PR.