Saturday, August 20, 2011

Am I Average?

This entry is inspired by P.-, and she was inspired by Darlene (I don't know her), who was inspired by this article here at RunningUSA. I will add my responses below:

Typical U.S. Male Runner
  • Average Age: 44.8 - Close: (41) y.o.
  • 73.5% Married - Not quite. Divorced many years.
  • 78.8% College educated - Yes. A.A. [had to get something for the time I spent at the community college] and a B.A. that I don't use professionally.
  • 76.4% Earn a household income of $75,000+ - Not so much at this time, and even then I only had one year, many years back, where I made even close to this amount as a single person.

Running History:
  • Average number of years running: 16 years - Not even. Just started this year.
  • Average number of running events participated in during the last 12 months: 9 events - Only two (2) events so far.
  • 67.9% have completed 1 marathon or more in their lifetime - Not yet, but am working up to it for next year.

Running Routine:
  • 79.2% Run/Jog 4+ hours each week - Yes. My training plan has me running [OK, jog/walking] at least this much.
  • 82.5% run 12 months a year - Only (6) mos. so far.
  • Average number of days run per week: 4.5 - Yes. My plan has me "running" four (4) days a week.
  • Average number of miles run per week: 29.5 - Close. I did (28.42) miles three weeks back, and am building up to more.
  • 55.8% describe themselves as ‘Frequent/Fitness Runners’ and 32.7% as ‘Serious Competitive Runners’ - Frequent/Fitness runner, yes. Competitive, not really.
Running Preferences:
  • Favorite race distance is the Half-Marathon (31.7%) - Working up to that in December.
  • Interested in entering next year: 
    • Half-Marathon (69.7%) - Not yet.
    • 5K (58.5%) - Not yet.
    • 10K (58.0%) - (1) down this year.
    • Marathon (56.9%) - Next year.
  • Primary motivation to start running: For Exercise (22.0%), Competed in School and Never Stopped (15.2%) - For exercise, that's me.
  • Motivation to continue to run: 
    • Staying in Shape (75.2%) - Yes.
    • Staying Healthy (70.8%) - Yes.
    • Having Fun (58.9%) - Yes.
Product Preferences:
  • Average number of running shoes purchased in last 12 months: 3.4 pairs - Only (1) pair so far this year, but expect I will need a new pair before the end of September.
  • Last running shoes purchased: 
    • ASICS (29.1%) - Not in years.
    • Nike (15.9%) - Never.
    • Brooks (14.1%) - BROOKS is my brand!
  • 56.4% spent $90+ on their running shoes - Yes.
  • 42.9% purchased their running shoes at a specialty running store. - Yes, Fleet Feet.
  • Favorite brands of running apparel: 
    • Nike (56.1%) - At least three (3) pieces.
    • ASICS (33.8%) - None.
    • Under Armour (32.0%) - Only (2) pieces.
  • 76.2% spent $100+ on running apparel in the last 12 months - Yes, I confess.
  • 66.6% purchased running apparel at a specialty running store - Not yet, just the shoes and socks.
  • Average Weight: 171.2 - Still hovering around (200) lbs.
  • Average Body Mass Index (BMI): 24.2 - Not sure, haven't checked.
  • 47.7% are content with their weight - Not yet. Needs to drop more.
  • 45.9% are content with their fitness level. - Not yet. Much more room to improve.
Guess this makes me somewhat average all around.

Today I made sure to use as a rest day only, exercise-wise, because of my tight right quads the last two (2) days. Here's hoping it pays off for tomorrow's Long Run.


    Friday, August 19, 2011

    Easy Run Friday

    Friday! Another Easy Run day, today. Looks like a nice day out.

    DC Bike Path: 1/2 Marathon Training, Easy Run. Dist: (4.39)mi. Pace-avg: (16:14). Speed-avg: (3.7)mph. Speed-max: (5.3)mph. Burned: (485) Calories.

    Plan: Run (2) miles easy @ a (17:33) pace, for a total time of (35:06) mins.
    Actual: Jog/Walk (2) mi. @ (14:49) pace avg., for a total time of (29:37.09) mins. Bracketed by (1) mi. warm-up and (1.39) mi. cool-down.
    Fuel: Pre-run: lunch earlier in the day (more pizza, garden salad); Mid-run: none. Post-run: Banana-Strawberry Chocolate Honey smoothie, then dinner.

    Good training run tonight. Nice and easy. My upper right quads are still kinda' tight, even after stretching out last night. Maybe some ibuprofen is in order. My KnuckleLights(tm) did not turn off on their own tonight, so that is good. I think one of the batteries was not fully seated, and I hope I corrected that this morning. I forgot my water-bottle in my hurry to get out and run. Since it was a short run it was not an insurmountable problem: The water fountains in the park still work fine.

    Other News: I want to go see more movies.


    Tempo Run 4

    Today's training run, another Tempo Run, was done after sundown. That means a longer test of my new KnuckleLights(tm). B-)

    Surface Streets: 1/2 Marathon Training, Tempo Run. Dist: (6.57)mi. Pace-avg: (16:18). Speed-avg: (3.7)mph. Speed-max: (5.0)mph. Burned: (710) Calories.

    Plan: Run (4) mi. @ a (15:56) pace, for a total time of (1:03:44) hrs.
    Actual: Jog/Walk (4) mi. @ (15:29) pace, for a total time of (1:01:56.81) hrs. Bracketed by (1) mi. warm-up and (1) mi. cool-down walks.
    Fuel: Pre-run: Dinner (Combo Pizza and a salad). Mid-run: none (dinner). Post-run: Vanilla ice cream with hot fudge Just a glass of orange Gatorade.
    Is this too much stuff to take out on a night run?

    Tonight's run was alright, mainly just jogging back and forth up the road that is a known distance. The KnuckleLights(tm) worked well, for the most part. There are some uneven places along the edge of the road that the diffuse LED lights did not really illuminate enough to see just how uneven. To be fair, I don't think my SureFire did as well the last time I jogged that same stretch a couple weeks ago. One of the units seemed to turn itself off spontaneously at least four (4) times tonight. I will have to check that one and make sure no sweat is leaking into it.

    I noticed my right quads were still tense and a little achy during tonight's training run. I wanted to push and keep jogging continuously for at least three (3) miles, maybe even four (4), but I did not want to risk an injury by trying too hard. I will have to work on stretching that out some more. I think I first noticed this during the VIPS 10K last Saturday. I was trying to push up the hills and maintain my jogging pace as much as possible. Then I aggravated it a bit on Tuesday crawling around in the back yard testing the phone line.

    Speaking of the VIPS 10K, I emailed Shadow Chase, since they were the group tracking the finishing times for the event, and am still waiting for them to correct my final time. They have it logged as (1:43:50.2) hrs. But a friend snapped a photo of me crossing the line at (1:33:14) hrs. The timing clock is in the frame with me, and is the last photo at the bottom of the page here. I appreciate that they had some computer issues on race day, and they are understaffed, but I expect they will get around to correcting it soon-ish.

    Other News: I started my CompTIA A+ certification prep class, the first of three, and it seems pretty straight forward so far, so I will keep at it. I really want to get back into the IT field, and getting IT certificates is pretty much the only way to do that.


    Tuesday, August 16, 2011

    Yet Another Easy Run Tuesday

    As noted above, today is time for an Easy Run. Especially since I skipped my Sunday Easy Run, even though I had already met my mileage quota for last week.

    DC Bike Path: 1/2 Marathon Training, Easy Run. Dist: (6.31) mi. Pace-avg: (16:33). Speed-avg: (3.6)mph. Speed-max: (5.1)mph. Burned: (698) Calories.

    Plan: Run (3) mi. @ a (17:33) pace, for a total time of (52:40)min.
    Actual: Jog/Walk (3) mi. @ (15:16) pace, for total time of (45:47.26)min. Bracketed by warm-up and cool-down miles.
    Fuel: Pre-run: Gu Roctane, Vanilla-Orange. (Meh.) Mid-run: Sport Beans, Orange. Post-run: Tall glass of OJ, a banana (little greenish, still) then Dinner!

    Tonight's run was OK. Once I started the three (3) mile Jog phase, I felt like I was smothering in the humidity. My weather widget indicates it is (34)% (23)% humidity right now, might have been more humid earlier during the run; I didn't check beforehand. It feels like it was a mistake to take two (2) whole rest days after the 10K. I should have at least gone for a bike ride as a bit of cross-training, but I did not. I think I napped off and on most of Sunday, and went to the movies on Monday. I saw "Friends With Benefits" with Mila Kunis and some dude named Justin Timberlake; never heard of him. Mila was the real attraction. She was awesome and I really enjoyed the movie. If you haven't seen it yet, go before it is gone. I'm sure it will be just as funny if you rent it later, but some movies I just want to see on the big screen.

    Tech Nerd: My brand new KnuckleLights(tm) arrived Friday, and I wasted no time opening the package and checking out the contents. I took my KnuckleLights(tm) out with me on tonight's "run," since I was leaving the house so late and I knew the sun would be down long before I got back.  
    Quick impressions: They work as advertised. I did not have to blip my flashlight to let people know I was on the path, so please don't run into me, or run me down on your bike. In the dark sections of the park these were terrific. Once I got back on surface streets, the KnuckleLights(tm) were only useful in the long stretches between street lights, though I am sure drivers would have had no trouble seeing them (and me), but I saw no drivers going the other way.

    KnuckleLights off.

    KnuckleLights on. SureFire 6P for scale (5-in.).

    KnuckleLights on, room lights off.
    KnuckleLights on, room lights off.

    The (4) LEDs per unit provide a diffuse light that is good for slow jogging and walking. At some point I will test these at a faster pace in full dark, during the coming fall and winter, if not sooner. The back and forth swinging of my arms may have contributed to a bit of unsteadiness on my feet with the lights moving back and forth. Since this was the first time I used them on a run I will be sure to make more observations about this on future training runs. I was actually still a bit sore from the 10K this past Saturday, so that may have also been a factor. Also, I was detecting a bad chemical taste in my mouth during my run. It may have been from my sunscreen running onto my water-bottle and the cap during my sweaty, slobbery run on Saturday. I hope that is the source, because then I can just scrub my bottle inside and out and there should be no more issues the rest of this training week.

    Other News: I spoke to a couple people at a local career college this afternoon and will be signing up for at least one (1) IT Certification Prep class. I need the structure because my previous, um, "efforts" at self-study with my IT books has been less than successful. I am expecting to try and boot-strap myself along some self-guided self-study on top of taking the class (different subjects).