Friday, September 30, 2011

Running Wild

She's a sprinter who could likely give Usain Bolt a run for his money over 100 M.  Even in middle-age (turning 9 years old this fall) she loves to run.  I'm talking about Tia our tiny Yorkshire Terrier with the massive personality.  She got me to fall for dogs once again.

Until next time...

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I doodle therefore I am

I doodle.  There, I said it.  Doodling artform, creative, intellectual...heck, it's also really fun!

Until next time...

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Running with the boys

On October 16 I get to run with my boys.  Andrew and Court have both signed up to run the ½ marathon at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Maraton.  Holden would have joined us but he is away tearing up the gridiron at Acadia University.  Next year, Holden.

My emotions are running high already thinking about the three of us running in the ½ marathon.  Since I had the opportunity of running the ½ marathon at the Reggae Marathon last year with Court, I have an inkling that this race on October 16 will be even better.

And race it will be.  Despite my best efforts to not ‘think competitively’, about running with 28 year olds, I’m betting that 25+ years of competitive experience will rule the day.  We all say that we are training hard but that’s likely just trash talk. Time will tell!  To be specific, around 10:55 am on Saturday morning, October 16.

Until next time…

PS:  I wrote this blog post at 35,000 feet on my flight home to Toronto after a week-long business trip in British Columbia.  Friday, September 23.  In mid-flight the significance of that date struck me:  it was the 3 year anniversary almost to the minute of my Father’s passing after suffering a massive and fatal heart attack.  I still miss him.  So while I’m running in the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront ½ Marathon in his memory, I’m running to raise $2,000 for the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario.  You can donate here:  Run for Heart.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Running on the road in British Columbia

Running ‘on-the-road’ this past week was effortless.  And it brought back some great memories as I covered some old ground.

In a previous life I spent a ton of time travelling on business throughout Canada and the United States.  I always brought my running gear and fit in early morning runs every day before business meetings.  It balanced out the stress of travel and endless meetings.  It kept me sane.

British Columbia was a regular stop and I’ve had the chance to run in just about every major city and town.  This week I ran in Vancouver, White Rock and Kamloops.  Here are some random thoughts and observations:

Vancouver…well, Richmond near the airport actually.  My route from the Delta Vancouver Hotel takes me over the Sea Island Way bridge to #3 Road where I headed down into the commercial strip of Richmond.  Where did the Speedy Muffler King shop and the General Motors Regional office go?  Both were gone replaced by retail stores!  I had a great tempo run putting in multiple speed repeats.

White Rock.  I have tons of great memories of White Rock…all good.  My first experience was with the kids, Andrew and Courtney when we took them on a trip to BC.  That trip included a visit to Al and his family for a salmon BBQ in his backyard in White Rock.  We also had the chance to walk along the sea floor when the tide was out…the kids had a blast picking up all sorts of slimy things. Al and I had dinner this past week and realized that was over 20 years ago!  Time flies…  My run took in some of the ‘hills’ that White Rock is famous for.

Kamloops.  Four hours up the fantastically scenic Coquihalla Highway northeast from Vancouver is the high-planes city of Kamloops.  One of my first business trips was to open the Speedy Muffler King shop in Kamloops.  It is often windy in Kamloops and the highlight of that experience was hanging on to a helium-filled blimp that we used at the celebration.  No wind to worry about this past trip but the hills got my attention.  I got in a great run up the side of the mountain near my hotel:  upward pain rewarded with a sprint back down.

Packing up to grab the early morning flight back to Toronto was melancholic.  I wasn’t looking forward to the flight but was glad I got to cover some old ground on the road.

Until next time…

Monday, September 19, 2011

Time for a change

I changed things up today.  Welcome to the new-look blog.

This was brought on because I've been in a slump around my running...or lack of running. After 25+ years of relatively injury-free running, I sustained a plantar fasciitis injury to my right foot a little over a year ago in August 2010 that still has not completely gone away.  Like the 'tough guy' I pretend to be, I thought I could 'run through it'.  This was absolutely the wrong answer at last December's Reggae Marathon but I was determined to finish the 1/2 Marathon especially since I ran it with my son Court.  The photo at the finish was worth the pain!

So I decided it was time to change things up on the blog.  Funny how frustration in one area can lead to positive things in another.

Fast forward 12 months from last August:  a change in my running has happened as well. After 3 months off, I eased back into running this spring.  Thanks to a new pair of shoes, the minimalist Puma Faas 500 and barefoot running on the sand at Wasaga Beach I'm back to running regularly.  And pain free, faster and more comfortable as well.

And maybe that's the lesson:  you can't expect things to change if you keep doing the same things over and over.

Until next time...

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The real reason I love running

It's not to loose weight or keep high blood pressure in check although those are the goals that motivated me to start running in the first place.

It's definitely NOT because I look great in tight-fitting spandex...where do those ripples and bulges come from?

And it's definitely not because I am the fastest runner although I keep telling myself that 'I am improving with age'.  But even though I'm not be running any faster, I am running much more comfortably even though the aches and pains take longer to recover from.

It comes down to the simple fact that it is the only time I get any alone time.  For those 30, 40 or 90 minutes I am totally self absorbed with no smart phone, headphones or distractions.  I'm only focused on my breathing and the occasional car that hasn't noticed me running along the side of the road.

I'm scared that it will end one day.  I'm doing my best to keep that day at bay.

Until next time...