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Archive for the month “March, 2012”

A Huge Weekend Runcheap Thank You To… 2 For a Dollar Fruit at 7-11

This weekends huge runcheap thank you deals with a combination of convenience and cheap cost:)

Thank you 7-11 for providing a cheap available fruit to someone who is constantly on the go and doesnt have the time for a longer shopping experience!

Thank you for realizing that amongst the unhealthy loads of crap that you typically sell people, there are some of us out there who need a healthier option and need it quickly!

Sometimes I think the writers for big fitness/nutrition sites both online and in print operate under the assumption that all of us have endless time to peruse nutrition stores, the aisles of organic supermarkets, or stop at every fruit stand on the side of road to spend several minutes picking out the best fruit. Guess what? I dont. I drive a lot, and I am constantly on the go and I dont have the time to do all that, or the cash to always drop several dollars on tasty fruit. Sometimes I just need a good piece of fruit on the go cheaply. Sometimes I just want a nice filling apple or a nice banana to temporarily satisfy a growling stomach prior to a hard gym workout. Or perhaps I just want a bit of healthy nutirtious energy before a run. 7-11 offers their fruit 2 for a dollar, and they are everywhere along m driving routes. It is just so simple, a quick in and out. The entire transaction takes maybe 2 to 3 minutes and I am back on the road headed to my destination and with something delightful.

I have to drive considerably and thus convenient stores are well, convenient for me. It is nice to know that there is always cheap fruit available quickly

I know a lot of runners and fitness experts turn their nose up at places like convenience stores, 7-11’s, and other little hubs that you can wander into. With some good reason. Their deals typically emphasize unhealthy fattening items, and they seldom have anything that is truly fresh. Also I obviously dont have the time for hard data nor access to it, but my super informal survey is that most people leaving those places arent leaving with a healthy selection. However.

A ginormously big huge however. That doesnt mean that there are not nutriious options available at those places. A good percentage of these locations around where I live sell things like fruit, granola bars, little boxes of cereal, canned tuna, even greek yogurt. Those items are there. Thats right, there are healthy or perhaps healthier options at these places. People just chose not to buy them. If I wrote a nutrition column, I would focus on teaching people to make healthy choices at typically unhealthy places/convenient places. Places where real people go often. Take 7-11 for me. I drive 80 miles a day on my soul sucking commute and I try to stay fit via multiple workouts. Obviously this means a lot of time at gas stations. Its very helpful to know that I can pop in and pop out of a store like this and have a Granny Smith and a Gala apple in the palm of my hand. Its helpful to know that 2 fresh bananas await me so I can multitask filling up my car and filling up my stomach with a preworkout snack.  I dont have the time (I really dont) to go all the way to into a supermarket (not on my route to work and often not open after I workout in the early morning) and purchase something.

1 of these guys and Im good to go for a gym, and good to go after the workout to refill.

Yes of course I keep fruit at home.  But when you are on the go sometimes you dont account for that little extra bite you may need. Or maybe  you decide you just want to jog a few extra miles because it is so beautiful outside.  Or maybe a I hit that morning workout with extra intensity. On those days Im really thankful to know exactly what I can get before I enter the store. An apple is great before a lift session and great after a run to me. Bananas are instant energy, and I was so glad Disney used them during the marathon at aid stations. Good, cheap, fruit keeps me running healthy, running cheap, and running strong. Nice to know there are convenient cheap locations all over the place to get them when I need them. So Thanks again to 7-11 for providing that “2 pieces of fruit for a buck” deal. It may not be the best deal on the planet cost-wise, but its easy and convenient and ALWAYS there when I need it.

I cant tell you how many times, I have dropped a quick buck for a pair of these many a time, and then downed one, and then hit a good run.

Enjoy Your Run. Enjoy Your Day :0

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Wish List Wednesday… Fuel and Food Favorites

Remember when I said that the Wish List Wednesday posts mostly wouldnt be simply about running gear that I am craving that I cant really afford? This week is one of those cases where it will be. This is an item I really need, and I crave having one as much as I crave the other item on the nutrition part of the post.

For my running wish…..

I wish that I had a Fuel Belt….

Set up- So much to carry, so few hands

I want to start going longer distances and building up to try my hand at further marathons, trail runs, and ultra runs. In order to better prepare/ perform in these races and training runs, I need to a way to refuel during my run. I need to be able to carry food, water, cell phones, keys and other items in a convenient way so Im not death gripping six different items while going distance and checking pace on my watch. Although I have resisted, I know I need one. The problem is they are a little out of my price range.

One of these would be so helpful to improve my running

The Ideal Wish-  Love Ifitnessinc

I know exactly what I want is this case and here they are. Either one or the other would be fine

http://www.ifitnessinc.com/index.php?_a=viewCat&catId=14

http://www.ifitnessinc.com/index.php?_a=viewCat&catId=15

I wish that I had one of these so I could strap it on, ram all the stuff I needed into it and get running. I wish that when my nutrition fails me I could reach into my pouch for another gel, or some other tasty treat I prepared for my run to boost my energy. I wish that I could put my phone safely away so I wouldnt be worried about dropping it and breaking it. I wish that I could put my keys in their so they didnt hurt my hands when I grip them on lengthy runs. I wish I could put my credit card in their as a just in case type deal. I wish that I actually had water with me on long runs to keep hydrated and train better. I wish that I had a fuel belt that would allow me to stay hydrated/energized/refreshed on these long runs so I could perform my best.

The Reality- Dehydrated and uncomfortable

I dont have one. On runs longer than 17 miles, I carry gels (or granola bars) with me in my hand, along with my keys, my gate opener (sometimes), and my phone. Its quite a pair of handfuls. Its uncomfortable to run with. Plus-notice something missing? No water. I rarely do distances between 17-20 with water. I know its not good for you and it limits performance but I simply cant carry anything more. I have to make those decisions beforehand. When I go longer than 20, I water place. I go out the night before, find 2 spots and place water bottles along the route. This is extra work and extra gas and gets me creepy looks late at night. There have literally been times when I have become so hungry and/or thirsty while running that I looked at the side of the road for water bottles and such. Seriously. Only a couple of times but still. Im sick of carrying everything in my hand. It is frustrating and limiting.

I have no free hands to carry one of these. On really long training race, I have to hunt for spots to hide them on my running route

The Possible- A Shoe Solution

Stuck on this one. I tried one at the expo for Gasparilla where I believe it was on sale. I was THIS close to buying one, but I had to resist the urge. It is a good thing I did. What stopped me? Uh, 1 pair of broken glasses and 1 severely bent pair. Plus, a cell phone that badly needs to be replaced. None of those have been fixed about a month or so later. Tack on having to pay $300 dollars to get the sideview mirror of my car fixed after I knocked it off on parents gate like an idiot. I certainly dont have the money for it. There is a 10 dollar device that they sell at Fitniche (a local runners’ store) which attaches to your shoelaces and is probably good enough to squeeze in a few things- a gel, a key, credit card maybe-  to free my hands of some of the stuff. It is not ideal, but it would be a step in the right direction and I can probably justify that expense

One of these for 10$ will probably be a purchase I make soon

Forward to my nutrition wish……

I wish I could have a real NY Bagel!!!!!!!!

Set up-  Cheap, yummy, and perfect for runners

I love bagels, absolutely love them.  Not to mention that for a runner its an excellent (and usually cheap) nutritional source in a variety of circumstances. It is good during glycoloading phase before big runs, good to replenish after runs, good as a breakfast before a big workout. To a runner it is an excellent source of needed carbohydrates. To a non runner it is fine too. Despite being labled by the South Beach and Atkins inspired Carb Police as an unhealthy food because of the caloric count and carb heavy nature, bagels can play a healhty role in a well organized, well thought out diet. I used to eat them a lot after my long runs, but the quality of bagel down here is so lousy that I miss the real deal. The ones I grew up with. The bagels down here are not worth the price they put on them however small.

The Ideal Wish- I miss that NY flavor

That I could enjoy a bite into a nice fresh, Long Island made bagel after a hard saturday of cross training, or a hard 17 mile long run. That I could replenish my carb supply with that delicious bit of NY flavor. That I could glycoload using one of those huge tasty bagels you can find any where on the streets of New York City. That as a treat, I could smother some peanut butter on half of one and use this as a quick, delicious, energzing breakfast. That I could enjoy the tasty product I grew up loving, that I took for granted when I was there, and that came in that white bag with the pungent yummy smell most weekends of my childhood… so good.

Totally craving a nice fresh LI bagel

The Reality-  A huge bagel snob

I dont refuel, carb load, or treat myself with bagels down here any more. Why? They are terrible. Im a huge bagel snob. I genuinely dislike bagels from just about any chain place ( 1 exception). When someone tells me about a delicious bagel from Panera Bread or Dunkin Donuts, I literally cringe. I look down my nose at bad bagel eaters the way my sister the beer snob looks down at me when I sip a hard cider or Miller Lite. Publix makes tolerable bagels, but even after running the marathon in Gainesville, I really didnt want to eat those mini offerings. When I was unhealthy I use to eat 7-11’s bagel with cream cheese most mornings plus a muffin and feel ashamed of myself both because of the excess of what I was eating and the poor quality of what I was eating. These bagels are brutal. To me this could be a useful, delicious food source as a runner. Another connection of a food that I love that also serves a cheap and effective purpose in my running. Instead, I almost never touch them anymore down here in the F L A.

Panera calls this a bagel and while it may be tasty to some, it doesnt work for me.

The Possibility- One acceptable place

Not planning any NY or metro area trips anytime soon due to expense and time purposes, so that option is out. Unfortunately visitng family from Connecticut did not smuggle down a bunch of those delicious goodies during their visits this year. Colossal, galactic sized fail on their part! Occasionally one of my fathers business friends shows up with some from NY, but I feel badly taking from my parents since they miss the bagels almost as much as I do. It looks like for the near future, I am going to have to be content with the closest possible substitute- Big Apple Bagels. Big Apple Bagels is a decent chain down there that stresses that they sell NY quality bagels. NY style bagels can really only be found in NY (ok maybe Jersey and CT as well) but BAB makes a bagel that is pretty good. It is the only acceptable substitute within driving distance of my place. They are not good enough, but will have to do for the time being.

This is the only place I will eat a bagel from in Florida. Not quite NY, but not close enough.

Oh wow, now Im really craving a bagel! Damn!

Enjoy your run. Enjoy your day :0

I just want to run. Put the obstacles aside please

I had the following conversation with a buddy of mine a few months ago:

“When are you going to be a real man and run the race I am running?” He asks me. I smile back, tryng hard not to be mad. We were just talking about me getting ready to run a marathon when he unloaded this gem to me.

“What race is that?” I ask back

“The Spartan Race” He responds

“Thats what one of those obstacle style course races, yeah? I hear they are cool, but just nor for me”

“Why not?”

“Too expensive” I fire back, trying to end this conversation because I know where its going. usually telling people something is too expensive is a good way to get them to back off. “Its like 80, ninety bucks”

“Well I find a deal and got it for 60. You should do it”

“I dont have that kind of cash dude, thats not enough dollar per mile” I say, tying to make a joke. It goes over like a lead balloon. I can see him start to get testy. I think about how to defuse the situation and end it amicably. Too Late

“You’re so negative man. I dont even want to sit next to you. Sometimes you just have to live a little and…” I stop listening at this point because I have heard this tirade/lecture several times before. Im already composing the pissed off text Im sending to my friends. Finally, Im pissed off enough t say something directly.

“Look, why I am negative just because I dont like the same things you do. Even if I had the cash to pay for that race. I would rather spend it on another half marathon/marathon man. Sorry”

Im sure my friend killed this race and that it was really challenging. I just wish it was easier to make people understand why I would just rather run

The conversation ends at this point. He goes on thinking Im negative. I go on knowing Im not. Knowing that what I finally told him at the end was the exact truth. Give me a hundred bones to run any race and I am not running any obstacle course race. Im going running. Im hitting a halfie, Im finding a doable trail race, Im searching for a full. Hell  $100? Im looking for the next ultra. Obstacle course race? Uh, just not for me.

Obstacle course races are everywhere these days. Just flip through the pages of any running magazine, look at the advertisements on any running site, skim the races on active and they are freaking everywhere. Their titles are so much fun to say out loud- The Spartan Race, Warrior Dash, Tough Mudder, Mud Crusade, Monster Challenges- that they draw you right to them.

On several separate occasions I have had people feel me out about my interest about one. I always tell them no on the grounds of expense. This is true, unless you sign up really early or in a big group (dont really have one) they tend to be pricey. With reason, the set up for these races must be crazy. But expense is honeslty half the reason. I just dont have a strong desire to compete in these races. Although they are certainly amazing challenges, I just dont find a strong attraction towards them.

I love to run, I absolutely love to run. I think sometimes people invite me to these races because they think that my passion for running is only about fitness or accomplishment. In other words, they think the only reason I run is because I am trying to stay in shape and trying to do well in races. Nobody really likes to run do they? Its so boring? Its long? Its so… It so… Woudnt you much rather compete in an action packed afternoon of ferocious fitness obstacle challenges to prove you are in shape. Isnt tha really more fun then 13.1 miles as a hot sun rises?

The answer for me is no. Most certainly no. I would simply rather run. While fitness is a big part of my running and accomplishment is also a piece of why I love running, they are far from the only reasons I run. Somewhere along the line at the beginning, I realized how much I truly enjoyed the overall experience of running and that it had moved beyond being a hobby to keep into shape into a full fledged passion. I remember thinking during the Dunedin Midnight 10k how much fun I was having because I was RUNNING. I was not surviving the distance, I was weaving around people, enjoying the race, breathing hard, and totally enjoying myself. That was the first time I felt like a runner, and not just someone who runs occasionally. Every since then, my dedication to running has shot into the stratosphere. With it my desire to compete in those obstacle style races has disappeared.’

Who doesnt love a good run at midnight?

Dont get me wrong- sign me up, and pay for one thats close to where I live and Ill go and give it a whirl. Provided there is no real running race that is available that day. Also dont get me wrong, Im not implying that these events are not fun are worthwhile. People really enjoy themselves at these events and seem to revel in the thrill. I cant imagine how difficult it is from a fitness standpoint to. It must require tons of strength, power, agility, and speed. Go for it then. Do all of them I say, if thats what you like. Just dont be incredulous when I turn down  the offer to join you. Please do believe me when I tell you I would rather just be running. Please do believe me when I tell you  that I find the mental and physical challenge of endurance race a way more enjoyable thrill than those races. Please please please belive me when I tell you how much I enjoy running.

This is the latest one near me that people seem really hyped for. I wish them well, not my thing though

Ask a hardcore basketball player if he wants to do an event with an obstacle course on the court or just plain, ball. Most basketball purists and players would select to just to play the game. I feel that way about running. I dont need the obstacles. A good endurance race has it challenge built into its distance, its elevation, its twists, its turns, its field, its temperature, etc. Its all there for me. There are thousands of running races out there. I havent even begun to scratch the surface of whats available to me. Each day I find out about more and more. More and more go in the bucket list. So many great footraces, so little time, so little freaking money. See my point? There just is no space in that bucket for hyped obstacle courses with some running on the side. When it comes to races, I need to focus I what I want to accomplish. On what I love. That is running and only running

See the course of Pikes Peak Marathon? I have so much fun just thinking about doing that race. Tough Mudder? No thanks, I would rather climb a mountain.

Enjoy your run. Enjoy your day :0

This Weekend’s Huge Runcheap Thank You To…. The Dailymile

A Huge Weekend Runcheap Thank You To Dailymile!

Thank you Dailymile! Thank you for providing one of the best services on the web without costing me an extra penny!

I first read about dailymile.com in Runners World of all places. It was in an article about finding local runs when you travel, and it had suggested this as a resource. Intrigued by what precisely it was, I went online the next day and started to play around with it. From a slow trickle at first; it has become my full blown exercise log. Everything I do exercise wise goes on Dailymile. The site is a superb medium for me to post my workouts for a variety of reasons I will get into below. Thanks Dailymile.com for providing an exceptional, free, online, social networking site based on around fitness and friendship

This site is simply superb

1) Exercise Log–  Every fitness expert I have read highly recommends recording workouts as a means fo reflection and tracking progress. Plus, its fun to look back and see just how much you accomplished on some weeks. Fresh with this advice I made several attempts to get handwritten fitness notebooks started. They would generally last about 2 weeks before disappearing into the sunset/black hole that is my car or when I was too lazy to physically handwrite them in there. I had given up on logging workouts and tracking progress that way for several months until I discovered Dailymile. Now I have this free service that tracks my weekly mileage and pace, allows me to list the variety of different fitness options I chose, see what others are doing, and even type in some thoughts about the process. And its online. Typing is so much easier for me, and i dont have to kep track of an extra notebook. The electronic nature of the program makes it so much more convenient, easy, and doesnt have me wasting extra cash on notebooks or physical book style fitness logs. Also instead of being a giant chore, doing it electronically has become fun to me. Its one of the first things I do every morning at work, and it gives me that feeling of accomplishment  to do so.

I made several ill-fated attempts to complete exercise logs using notebooks like this before dailymile

2) Social Aspects- I am a product of my generation and I enjoy a fair amount of social networking. I love that Dailymile has designed a site that incorporates the elements of  something like facebook with elements of exercise tracking. They have found the right combination too.I dont have very many friends on there but I have 1 in particular that I enjoy going back and forth over workouts and runs. Besides, its fun just to click around and see what people are doing and get ideas for future workouts from people you may never meet.

3) Racing- This one is related to the social piece of above. I like the feature on this site whereby you can indicate that you are participating in an event and then see others who are participating in the same event. You can then view what others are doing to prep for the same race. It is kind of like having a virtual training group, which for someone who mostly trains alone can be really helpful. Afterwards you can also leave your review of the race as well, making it a superb research tool for the future.

I couldnt find anyone else running this marathon in Gainesville, until I checked on Dailymile. It was particularly useful to read about people's experiences with the difficult conditions/course afterward

4) FREE- This should be #1. I would pay 10$ a month for this service and I have almost no money to spare right now. Thats how much I value it. Track my progress? Geta feel of accomplishment? Look at my running buddies’ workouts? Get new training ideas?  etc? etc? And for free? Just outstanding.

My favorite aspect of this tremendous site

5) Reflective- May have discussed this somewhat already but it needs to be restated and repeated redundnantly. This site is important because of its reflective nature. I love to think about my workouts and how they went after they are done. Particularly my runs, I love to analyze and break them down mile by mile. I hate when I kill a  run and I cant get my thoughts about it clear and down. Dailymile has allowed me to be reflective, it has given me that forum to put my words about my running down so they dont weigh on me. Even if nobody reads them, it is meaningful to me that they get out there.

So all that considered, once again, for helping me improve my running AT ZERO COST  through logging, tracking, social networking, and personal reflection- Again- A wuge weekend Runcheap thank you To Dailymile.

Enjoy your run. Enjoy your day :0

Wish List Wednesday… Of songs and soil

Today’s wish list deals with my lack of spice so to speak. Both in adding some flavor to some of my training runs with music and in adding homegrown spices for my food.  So on that note, onward.

Today’s running wish is….

I wish I had a functioning IPOD to run with….

Set up-  Just stopped working… GRRR

I dont remember when my IPOD Nano departed me. It was sometime during the summer when I was base building for my first marathon. Like all electronic items that I seem to own, it simply stopped working for no reason. Quite literally, one day it worked and the next day it didnt. There was no discernible incident between the last time I had used it and this time. It just ceased to operate correctly. It happened on a training run too. An LSR of all things. It would simply play for 5 seconds and turn off. Play for 5 seconds and turn off. It was annoying, and I knew it was charged correctly so I was concerned. Ugh, I had to complete a whole LSR with no music! I remember thinking how absurdly dreadful that run was. How colossally boring! Running without music!  Argh. I accomplished my long run that day and was proud of myself  for doing it sans tunes. When I returned to my house, I set to work on fixing the problem. Surely this was a simple problem. A quick fix. No  worries. I had problem solved IPOD problems before. But it wasnt. It was dead, beyond repair. It would not hold a charge either and even when plugged in it would turn off without prompting after only a few seconds. I still physically own that IPOD. Everyone once in a while, I get bored and try to revive it. No go. Its gone, and I dont have the money for any other.

I miss my portable music

The IDEAL WISH- Just a replacement

This was one is simple. I just want another version of my exact same IPOD back in order with functioning headphones. That is all. I dont really want to use it for LSR’s anymore ironically. In the interim- without the music- I have really learned to enjoy my long runs and being outside with nature (even boring Wesley Chapel/Lutz/ and Land o Lakes have their charms).  I also dont want it for races. I have run so well in races without music, that I dont want to go back to using it.  Nope, I wish I had my functioning I POD back for my gym treadmill runs in the morning on Mon-Wed-Fri. That I could jam out to that running playlist I worked so hard to develop. That music could help with that morning self motivation. That I could tune out (literally and figuratively) the annoying people in the gym when Im lifting or rowing. That I could put on whatever music Im feeling for my workout- whether that be really hype techno, hard metal, poppy nonsense, or even in depth listening intellectual music- and let it go. That would be more than ideal. I miss music driven gym workouts, and the extra good feeling I get when Im working out with some tunes.

I dont need a fancy new one, just another version of my broken one

The Reality-  Please Change The Rotation!

I run in the morning on the treadmill to whatever programming on the TV has and listen to whatever dreadful musical choices my gym blares on the loudspeakers. It is just awful.  And they dont change the rotation ever it seems like.  I have learned to enjoy songs that I cant stand, just because its always on their early morning rotation. They also run the same commercials again and again and again and again as well. I hate them. That is not a word I use lightly, but when you run 3 mornings a week at your gym and have your head assaulted with the same terrible nonsense repeatedly… well.. I hate them. I also dislike having to listen to others chit chat while I lift. This is a personal choice. Strength training is a good relaxing step out of the world for me.  I really just want to chill out, go at with the weights and enjoy my afternoon or evening. I dont want to have to listen to other people talk or grunt or whatever. Without an IPOD I cant do this.

The Possibility- Hand-Me-Downs To The Rescue?

Im limited on this one. My sister has recommended buying the smaller IPOD Shuffle. A cost she describes as “Only  50 dollars”. Thats too much to justify to myself for something that is a luxury. Thats money that can go a bunch of other places. Others have suggested buying one online for cheaper, but I dont trust buying something used. Plus the deals that others find online dont end up being actually deals for me. I could also take it to the IHospital. Thats one of those neat places that are sprouting up to fix your mac related problems. The workers there even wear scrubs to sell the gimmick. I have used it before for the same IPOD when I had some problems and extra cash. They were friendly, quick, and convenient. It also cost me $65 to fix. So not so much on that. I guess all that I can hope for is one of my family members getting an upgrade or getting sick of one of their older ones and offering it to me. If hand- me- downs work for clothing, why not for electronic devices? I would love to just splurge and get one, and thats what I used to do, but music while I workout is an extra so Im holding off.

Inheriting an older shuffle is probably my best bet at this point

Now onto my nutrition wish….

I wish I could grow my own spices/ have my own home garden…

Set up-  Grow Your Own

I wrote to one of my favorite bloggers recently about trying to save money and run cheap while living healthy. She wrote back with a huge helpful list of suggestions, that I am trying to implement slowly but surely into my life. One of her suggestions was that I attempt to grow my own spices/plants. I was intrigued by this idea. I am fascinated by people who grow their own veggies, spices, and fruits. It seems so cool to eat something that came from a plant that you grew and nurtured. If you do it right, it is probably also a huge money saver as well. I would love to try to grow even some smaller things like spices. That might easily eliminate some of the blandness from my food. Plus spices are expensive. I cant really do it though, and for a variety of reasons

I would settle for something half of this size.

The Ideal Wish- From My Own Garden To My Own Plate

I wish I could simply plant a few vegetables, fruits, and spices in a small plot near my house. That I knew about how to garden, how to plant, how to use soil, and how to use the proper techniques to get results. That I could prepare a plate of food that at least partly came of my own making. That my bland chicken could be spiced up with oregano, garlic,  or basil or something that you spice chicken with. That I could eat my own straberries, use my own limes, top stuff with nice small tomatoes, even make my own guac from fresh avocado… You get the point

Lovely fresh veggies would be a nice addition to my meals

The Reality- Friendly Feline Destroyers

I live in a townhome. A triplex town home and the only access to the outside I own is a tiny rectangle concrete porch outside of a small sliding door. Its barely enough to even sit a chair and read a book on. I own no actual grass. No land for planting. I could just do a small planter on what counts for my porch right? Not really, lots of outdoor animals roam my neighborhood and I dont want them near my house. Plus in Florida the weather is so unpredictable they could be ruined in a flash. So at least I could grow plants inside you say? Spices grow well as long as you give them adequate sunlight and with the right spot you could get something going indoors. Nope, cant do that either for 2 reasons. They go by the names Denny and Morgan. My 2 tabby cats who are ultra curious and nosey and would probably destroy plant life out of sheer playfulness then anything else. I can see their incredulous faces now as I stare down at a mess of soil on a floor in my house

An older picture of my older tabby, Denny. His pal Morgan and him are curious about everything in the house and planters, soil, and plants would be too much fun to resist.

The Possibility-  Off-Housing My Planting Needs

This one I am working on directly. I brought it up to my mom who is a skilled home gardener. She grows lots of different plants outside on her lanai. She grows tons of spices, limes, lemons, tomatoes, and other things that dont come to mind right now. She has volunteered to teach me how to set it up, care for,   to let me pick a few plants of my own,  and grow them at her place where there is space and a dearth of feline creatures. I would be responsible for their care and take home their output. It will be a fun and productive arrangement. This way I will learn the skill, get the product, and gain myself some important knowledge that will save me some money both now and down the line.

My mother grows lovely scallions in her "Lanai Garden"

Enjoy your run. Enjoy your day :0

Cost of Running An Endurance Race Follow Up- A Great Deal

This one is really one of those, “am I the only person in the world who didnt know this?” type moments.  I have to concede, Im still something a newbie to the whole scene so Ill chalk it up as a learning experience.

Last week I wrote a whole blog post about the cost of running my last endurance race of the season- The Florida Beach Halfathon. This Sunday I ran that race and had a terrific experience (at the cost I stated). Ft. Desoto is quite a beautiful park before and after sunrise and while the heat slowed me down, the  whole time on the course was enjoyable. The post race spread was delectable and the beach afterward  was predictability spectacular as well.  Additionally,  I was told several times by racers about the deal that Florida Road Races offered. Huh? What Deal? There was a deal? I missed a deal? A chance…. to save… money….GRR..

Enjoyed my beach side sunrise halfathon tremendously and the medal, but I wish I had planned a little further ahead and been aware of their offers.

I should have been aware of this deal and I was not. This is what happens when you add a race last minute, you miss small pieces of info which then turn out to be really ginormous money saving pieces of info about exactly what you write all your damn postings about! Therein possibly costing yourself money. As it turns out if you register for all races at once at the beginning of the season you can get all 4 for $160. Let me state that again, 4 races at stellar locations for a grand total of 160 bucks. 40 dollars for a halfie? Total steal.  Plus they offer an extremely friendly deferral and cancellation policy. This is almost as important because you never know what opportunities/injuries/life circumstances will and wont come up. Its also an indicator that Florida Road Races is RACER FRIENDLY. This is a big deal to me. Its important that organizations that put on races that  dont only exist as a product to be sold (happening more frequently),  but as an experience for runners. This means being accommodating whenever possible. In fact I just read a different blog posting (www.irunnerblog.com) yesterday about a blogger having difficulty with the NYRR with respect to the NYC Half.

A thank you to the race director for pointing this out to me (see his comment on my previous post), and a big thank you to all of those racers who told me about this both before 7am and after 9 am on Sunday.

Once I find out more specifically what my own life situation will be next year, I may sign up for the rest of the races together 🙂

Please visit-. www.floridaroadraces.com  to get more info

Enjoy your run. Enjoy your day :0

Cost of Doing Business

***Warning hideous foot approaching*****

This past weekend I completed 2 races. One short one I more or less did because my boss asked me to, although it was local, well run and for a good cause. This was the Spring Sprint For Autism 5k. I ran 3 miles in 19:37 and would have probably finished at something like 19:55. However, the finish line was confusing so I stopped at the wrong place and walked a fair part of the last .1 before I realized my error. This was a huge grr moment for me (I paid 25$ for this race, hate screwing it up at cost), and jacked up my time significantly. On Sunday, I completed the delightful Florida Beach Halfathon in 1:39 38. Not my best half, but my nasty cold and the Florida heat got me, and I was happy to roll in sub 1:40 (Top 50, wohoo!), and happier still post race to chill at the beach with some running friends.

One of these friends became the third person in recent weeks to point out the rather nasty nature of my right foot when I changed into my post race flip flops.  They are quite noticeably gross, and it doesnt take a runner to notice them. The left side is caked with an improperly treated blood blister which has deteriorated into peeling pieces of hardened skin. The 2nd toe (next to the big toe) has a huge black thick toenail on it and is starting to develop another blood blister on it. It also appears to be drifting off course for a lack of a better way to say it. Any time I wear my flip flops all of these rather nasty runners delights are visible, it just takes honest people who you know,  to comment about them.

I should state before I go any further that none of these visible “wounds” physically bothers me at all. I mean that. I feel no pain with regards to either. Not while I run, not while I lift, not while I spin, and not while I go about my day to day experiences at all. They cause me zero pain.

In fact I didnt even know I had the blood blister until after I took of my running shoes following the Gainesville marathon. At that point it was huge and bright red, and frightening. I dont know where it came from. The first hilly distance race I ran, poor striking and running gait, not tying my shoelaces correctly, first race in new shoes, bad sock choice- all or none of those things could have done it.

The toenail has been festering for some time. I had them on both of my feet but managed to trim it off the left. The one on the right has gotten so thick I dont think pliers could get it off. Its nice and dark and black. I know “runner’s toenail” is common, but Im pretty sure its supposed to fall off or go away or something. It hasnt.

When my friend Becky saw my maladies post race even she – a running and capoeira veteran of many years – was a bit grossed and concerned. She gave me helpful runners suggestions for dealing with them which I will employ since they are low cost. Thankfully she didnt say what she really knew she should. Neither did my teaching friend this morning when she saw them. My mother on the other hand has been saying it for weekes. Everyone’s least favorite medical related expression -“You should get that checked out”.

The blackened toenail doesnt ail me, but its level of grossness is concerning to me

I cringe when I hear that. I dont feel like going to a doctor, and then have them refer me to a specialist. I have a busy life and I dont want to spend more time at places I dont want to drive or go to. I really dont want to pay the co-pay to the first doctor to refer me to the foot specialist to whom I would have to pay an additional copay. I also dont want to risk the possibility of “follow up” appointments and tests and whatever else costs may come up. I dont want to pay for whatever ointments or devices they want me to use to protect against…whatever. You see my point? However this is an interesting point for me.

Preventive care is important to well…prevent injuries. Any good athlete knows that they should always expend the extra effort to make sure their body is functioning on all cylinders and do whatever is necessary to keep them there. Part of that is getting problems in check before they become colossal. I agree with this whole philosophy. This doesnt even get into how physically unappealing it looks to someone who wears flip flops often and is well… hopelessly single

This is really attractive. Imagine it bright, pulsing red like it was at the beginning

The problem is I just cant afford it right now. I have decent insurance but even if the doctor notices something small that they may want to fix- its going to cost me money that I could use elsewhere in my life. So I am leaving it unaddressed for now-at least medically speaking. Its a risk for sure I know, but it doesnt weigh on my mind that much. As my life goes now financially and logistically, I can only fix big problems that are essential to core areas of where I am headed. Smaller stuff gets addressed in due course, and down the line stuff rarely gets noticed. Run the mile thats in front of you in runners speak I guess.  Im lucky I notice extra stuff like this at all. In this case its only because its so grossly visible that this one became apparent. But there is no pain, so I just have to leave it alone. Running battle scars for now. Or as I told my friend Heidi this morning, when you are a runner, just the cost of doing business. Ugly and probably not healthy skin on my feet.

Enjoy your run. Enjoy your day

A Huge Runcheap Weekend Thank You To… Florida Parks and Trails

This weekend’s huge runcheap thank you goes out to Florida Parks and Trails!

Thank you for your excellent, convenient, extensive, and cheap spaces to improve my running!

*****An especially big thank you to Starkey Park and Flatwoods Park, where I have logged many quality miles ****

Now I could write a huge posting about all of the ways I dislike Florida for runners. There are plenty. But thats not what this series is about, so I am going to take this opportunity to focus on something extremely positive about living in the Tampa area of Florida. Namely- the copious, well run, convenient, and ultra cheap parks and trails. A big thank you to all of these trails for all of the following reasons.

1) Convenience- I have talked a few times in previous postings about how much I am sick of driving and do not want to add more mileage or spend more gas money than I already have to for my commute. I need places to run that are NOT out of the way and near locations which I already frequent. In the Tampa area there are parks and trails everywhere, and they are super easy to find. They are not tucked away but very often right off of or near major roads and locations. 2 in particular have been particularly valuable to me. Starkey Park in New Port Richey is a delightful park thats close to where I work and has superb running trails.  Then there is Flatwoods Park in New Tampa which is directly near my parents house and off of a major north south road and near the interstate (both of which I have to drive for various reasons). That park is likewise well kept, well used, and perfect for all sort of runs. Finally, the Suncoast Trail parallels the lengthy Suncoast parkway and is incredibly easy to access. It goes on for miles and miles.  I am just starting to use this one because-Like Starkey Park- I can get to it directly on my way home from work. Convenience is so lovely, and makes things cheap and easy to plan for.

The Suncoast Trail is a popular and convenient haunt for runners and cyclists in the area. It goes for miles along the parkway of the same name, and connects to many Florida parks

2) Cheapness- These parks used to be free. Reality is that the economy in Florida blows worse than it does in most of the country so now they charge a 2 dollar fee to park for a day. I used to gripe about this, but the reality is that its fair compensation for what they provide and what you get access to.

Jay B Starkey Park is the full name of this cheap running location near my house. It is surprisingly located by where I work and is mile marked every half mile. Great Spot

3) Quality- I have done most of my “park running” at those 2 locations , and one of the reasons I go back is that they are quality locations. How could I not go back to a running location that provides me a quality place to run without a lot of personal expense? What do I mean by quality? They have good parking. Their trails are well paved, well mile marked, and have copious water stations. They WANT athletes to come use them. Whether it be runners, hikers, cyclists, or just people looking to walk a dog- all are welcome. I have seen a few other trails in Florida and they have similar characteristics. Also from what I have heard, many of the parks are really good for camping as well

I did a lot of marathon mileage build up at this location. Completely flat, and usually quiet. This is a great place for any type of pace running you want to do.

4) Safety- Florida is not one of the safest places to run on roads. Its just not. It has a high pedestrian accident rate, and its reputation for having bad drivers is (in my opinion) well earned. If you are lucky enough to live near one of Tampa’s extensive housing communities with the stupid flowery names, they usually have runnable sidewalks and trails. I did a decent chunk of my base building at my parents community. Still I never felt really safe and I never do unless the trail really isolates itself from the road. You dont have to think about that when you are running in parks. When you are there, you get ” race time” conditions. You can just let it go and blast a good tempo run or chill and enjoy the nature around you with a LSR .  Obstacles and what not can be fun, but to me,  my running improved because I didnt have to worry about traffic lights, stop signs, and cars while I was trying to build mileage.

I would love to do more running on the Pinellas Trail

5) Races Lots of parks with trails also means lots of great chances to run races. This weekend I am running the Florida Beach Halfathon, one of a four road race series in this area that all take place (at least somewhat) on these trails. Additionally, there are races on the Pinellas Trail which goes through Palm Harbor and through Clearwater quite frequently. There are ultra races up at a park near my house this weekend, and a few trail races in local/close parks this summer . Hell there was a half marathon at Starkey Park just last weekend. Races abound. I think the extensive park system in the area really lends itself well to setting up a variety of races, which is why there are so many in Florida during race season. To me races on these trails also seem cheaper. This is an unscientific theory, but one I will pay closer attention to in the future.

Ft. Desoto Park is where my race is this weekend and has trails and a scenic locale

Whenever I move away from this area to another permanent location, I know one of my requirements will be that my new location  has a great public parks system with runnable trails. Florida has set a super high bar for that. So a huge runcheap thank you once again to Florida Public Parks and Trails!

Enjoy your. Enjoy Your Day :0

Wish List Wednesday… Hilling and “over”filling

On Today’s Wish List Wednesday, Ill deal with my desire to improve my running through up and down  terrain and my inability to handle those buffets and potlucks.

So…………

Today’s Running Wish Is…….

I wish… I lived near more runnable hills

Set up- Horrible Helpful Hills

Hills improve your running in every way imaginable. They build muscle, improve your cardio, and can be used as an important  tool to build speedwork. This is to say nothing of the fact that a lot of the courses that I hope to run later in my life have lots of terrain. Unfortunately I live in pancake flat Florida. Seriously, one  of my favorite parks in Florida to run in is called Flatwoods Park in New Tampa. It lives up to its name and then some. In fact any good place to run in the Tampa area is similarily plagued by flatness. If I want to run hills outside, it requires some driving which means more time and money that I dont always have, or a treadmill.

The IDEAL Wish- Must Repeat, Must Repeat, Must Repeat

I want a couple of things here. I want a big a gigantic hill near my house thats good and long with a nice huge incline so I can ran some quadricep bursting hill repeats. So I can feel the pain of pushing through #9, when I can barely feel my legs. So I can run hell hill mondays for real and barely be able to walk home. I also want a nice long hilly course with some severe  enough up and down to make a real difference. That has specific miles that I dread running and horrible hills that I can give fun hateful nicknames too.

I would love some sort of big hill right near where I live

The Reality- Treadmill trudges 

I have to run most of my hillwork on treadmills. The hill setting on my treadmill sets you up on repeats through 4 increasing sized inclines, each for a minute, with a minute flatter section following.  I typically run it for 50 minutes and the level of inclines I select depends on what I am training for. The 50 minutes generally means that I will complete 4 sets of 4 hill increases, discounting time for beginning and end.

Ocassionally, Ill pop up to a little town about 20 minutes or so away from where I live called San Antonio.There is a college there called St. Leo University, and I will leave my car there (semi-legally)  and hit some hills. In particular there is an 8 mile loop with decent hills that goes around the area. The run is pretty, and I would do it often but there are problems. Firstly, its not a runnable course. There are no shoulders on the side of the road to run most of the course on. Stepping off onto the side of the road is fine with me, but thats not any better. Ruts, branches, leaves, unstable grass are all characterize any off road running you must do and I dont want to injure myself in pursuit of good hills. Secondly, if you stay on the road, get prepared to dodge traffic around blind spots. Youre running on (and I mean on) 2 lane roads in a rural town and cars do not slow down and do not really want you there, so it can get really dangerous. Of course, its also a 20 minute drive so it means more gas and mileage on my car.

I trained hard for hills (in my way) before Gainesville. I had the treadmill on a super high setting every Monday and I ran San Antonio a few times in preparation for that course. Still, it felt like I was making an effort to run hills, rather than knowing how to run hills. It showed on the back half of that race which didnt have huge hills but steady uneven terrain. If I had consistent hills to run whereby it would be second nature, I would have killed that course.  But I didnt, and I flamed out in the back half.

The Possible-  More of the same

In this case, the possibility is also the reality. Hit the treadmill at a hard incline setting.  Or maybe just put in a extra hill workout (I dont know where) on the treadmill thats a straight climb where I put it on a slow speed for a long time at set incline which I could increase from week to week. Other than that, a move further north (somewhere in Florida possibly) to a place with some terrain would be helpful. It might be on the horizon for me.

Now my food/nutrition wish…

I wish I could control myself at pot lucks and buffets

The Set Up- Willpower now departing

For whatever reason I always seem to end up at a lot of potlucks/buffets. My capoeira group has them with surprising frequency and they are fun, cheap entertainment to go to. They are packed with delicious food choices, ranging from yummy salty snacks, to delicious dinner treats, to to decadent baked goods. Bring something to one of these events and you have fair game to go to town on the humongous spread of food that is ineveitably there. I have a problem with this. I can never determine how much is good enough, and I want to try anything. Besides the food is just sitting there for free, waiting to be eaten. What ineveitably seems to happen is that by the end of the evening, Captain Willpower has left the galaxy, and the eating frenzy commences. It can get worse with buffets that I pay for. I just want to go to these things and not leave feeling gypped or stuffed to the point of embarrassment and disoredered eating.

Temptation is hard in this case for a couple of  reasons. To begin with both of these situations are fairly low cost.  So of course I want to get as much as I can for whatever I spent. Plus in many cases its food I will not be able to produce on my own (cost and talent)and may never see again. So I indulge too much.

The Ideal Wish- Satisfied but not stuffed

That I could attend a potluck, and try a small sample of all the home cooked stuff and savor it slowly and just move on. That I could enjoy the worthwhile food, that came from the many talented home chefs I know and not touch the store bought crap that appears on the same pot luck table. That I could walk away and avoid picking at smaller things the whole evening. That I could leave one of those events feeling like I had a good time, and satisfied that I enjoyed and not consumed the food (which is a line that I cross far too often). Or that I could go to the buffet, isolate a good variety of things I want to try and have a couple of small plates of dinner, than maybe one or 2 dessert treats and walk away. That I could feel like getting my money’s worth was not an excuse to eat six consecutive plates of food goodness.

The Reality- Fixing the smaller percents

I am a healthy eater pretty much 90 to 95% of the time. I count calories, eat colored meals as often as possible, and eat the right mix of foods as often as I can. Whole grains, carbs, lean proteins, fruits and veggies are regular parts of my diet that I enjoy and I eat routinely. I work out really hard and really often so if an opportunity for an indulgent meal comes up on the week or weekend I dont pass it up. I definitely have earned it and I am smart enough to know that a return to healthy eating consistently and my workout pace will prevent me from sliding down an unhealthy path. I am also smart enough to know, that being healthy doesnt mean you need to deprive yourself of tasty and decadent foods once in a while. Good food is meant to be eaten, albeit smartly.

The problem becomes when I attend these situations and I lose self control. I feel justified – due to expense and effort – to just go to town and binge badly. Thankfully, they dont happen THAT often. Still they do occur. Last summer I went to Asian buffet and ate so much that I felt no desire to eat anything for close to the next 24 hours. As recently as a week ago,  I was at a capoeira event with a pot luck where I ate plate after plate after plate after plate. The food was so good, everything home made, unique,  and scrumptious. I couldnt get enough. It was deliciously bad.  Probably about once a month and half an indulgent meal becomes an eating fest. Thankfully it has not effected my running or training, but I would still like to get this under control.

The Possibility- Self Control and Strategy

This one is also tricky to correct. I enjoy food a lot, especially new types of cuisine from home cooks. I dont get the chance to eat what they offer that much. I dont get the chance to try new foods that much. I just dont have the time or the money to experiment with new foods.  So I overcompensate by taking advantage of these situations too much. As far as pot lucks go, I plan on writing a list of strategies down on an index card which will be reminders of why binging is a bad idea. I also plan on trying to not be that hungry when I am there, maybe eat a small meal beforehand. Also, I plan on bring a super healthy snack that I can pick at the whole night and stay by. I have completely cut myself off from all buffets. After I went on the cruise with my family, I knew there was no other option.

I guess the more intrinsic thing to do would be to develop more self control. Thats still a huge work in progress. Healthy eating habits are a constantly developing challenge. Finally, learning how to cook with more variety and more flavor would probably also temper some of what happens on those days. No need to over experiment, when I can do it myself

I might need to carry this around in my wallet

Enjoy your run. Enjoy your day :0

Florida Beach Halfathon: Cost of Running an Endurance Race

I started putting this together on my soul sucking commute to work today. What is the actual total financial cost of running one particular distance race? Not an uber spectacular, or an ultra small race but a regular,  well-run half marathon. This is not meant to be a judgement of any kind, just a factual breakdown of what it costs and some opinions about it. So here we go.

Race Fees

– This is my last half marathon of the Florida endurance running season. Im reaching a peak point of exhaustion and the bottom of my wallet, but I decided to do one more as my Spring Break approaches. This half marathon is part of a several race half marathon series that takes place in the areas surrounding Tampa. It is comprised of the Clearwater Halfathon, Florida Halloween Halfathon, the Florida Holiday Halfathon and this race – the Florida Beach Halfathon. Of course, its not actually run on the beach but it takes place at Ft. Desoto. If you do any research about that spot you will find its one of the nicer, more highly- rated beaches in Florida, and also a great spot to camp if you are into that. Its an enjoyable location, and a state park with lots of running trails. This will be a scenic run, and I was surprised that the race cost was what it was when I signed up just 2 weeks before race day. It was cheaper than Rock n Roll was at that point, and is cheaper than the halfie in Sarasota was,  when I looked at  that race. Total Cost – $70

Gas Cost

– Currently it costs be about 39$ to fill up my car and I get decent mileage on the highway. Ft. Desoto is approximately an hour and half drive from where I live, so you are talking about 3 hrs driving. This will kill about half my tank of gas. Thats the reality. The #1 pain in my life right now -whether its for work, necessity, or pleasure- is gas costs. Total Cost- $18.50

Yuck

Pre Race Dinner

–  Im not the foolish runner who overloads and goes on a pre-race carb frenzy the night before an endurance race. Still, I enjoy a filling plate of pasta the night before a race and I do feel like it helps the following day. This means I need to purchase pasta and sauce (neither of which I keep in my house that regularly). The 2 items together costs me 2.90$ at the supermarket, and I will roughly consume half the box of pasta and probably about half the jar of cheap pasta sauce. The other stuff I will use to add “day before” carbs are all things that are already in my house (rice, potatoes, cereals, fruti snacks, etc.) Total Cost- $1.45

Day Of Race Breakfast

– This one is more tricky than it should be and a surprising expense. Theoretically, I have the ingredients for a nice sit down pre race breakfast. However, because the race is so early in the morning and so far away, its just infinitely better for me to put together a breakfast that I can consume on the drive over. It must be portable, and I generally like a specific amount of calories pre-race to make sure I get what I need. Here is the run down.

Natures Valley Granola Bar – $1

Nutri Grain Bar– .79 Cents

2 Bananas– $1

Fruit Snack Packet – Already have on hand

Cereal Serving Size– Already have on hand

Emergency Granola Bar (Have to prep something in case my metabolism gets crazy and I get hungry) – $1

Total Breakfast Cost- $3.80

I love one of these as part of a cheap, portable , pre-race breakfast

Pre-Race Energy

– I dont know how other runners feel about this and I dont care. Most drink coffee and I hate coffee so I need something for that jolt to life as the race approaches. Usually I use a 5 hour energy within 15 minutes of  the race start. I find that it works perfectly for what I need. Total Cost- $2.40

My version of coffee 🙂

During the Race Energy

– This is another one of those “Just in Case” type of things.  At every one of the distances I have run, the information regarding aid stops relating to food and gels has not been entirely accurate. Some have been more than stated (Disney), some have been less (Five Points of Life).  This race is talking about providing oranges at a variety of aid stations. Im guessing to keep with the Florida theme. I imagine that oranges are great for energy and replenishment while running. One small problem is that I hate them intensely. I find oranges gross, so I am planning on running with a couple of energy gels of my own. I do this a lot, and I carry them in my hand as I do not own a fuel belt. MMM, I think I ll go with peanut utter and berry flavored this time. Total Cost- $2.35

I love at least 2 of these during my halfies

Celebration Costs

– Ill probably end up back at my parents house for a good Sunday night dinner. Any home cooked meal from my mom is more than reward enough for me. That being said, I always feel the need to treat myself to some sort of post race reward even if it is later at night. I have about $5 left on a Cold Stone gift card but Im not usually in the mood for ice cream the day of a race. Instead I will probably go with a refilled big gulp of Diet Dr. Pepper and some 7-11 Cookies. Very underrated before you criticize, I prefer the peanut butter, but the chocolate chunk and oatmeal raisin are also delicious. Total Cost- $2.40

7-11 has underrated baked goods, including their 3-packs of cookies, they make for a cheap post race reward.

This places my overall race cost (unscientifically of course) at $100.50. There are obviously areas I could cut and probably get it down to around 95$ or so, but still its always going to be on the expensive side to me. Some people may think that this is a reasonable price for a race total, others may think its unreasonable, and others may think its a drop in the bucket. I would list the overall cost of this reasonable, even it is personally a huge hit to me. I would be remiss however if I didnt look at the other side of the equation. What am I getting for my money? Specifically for the biggest chunk of it, the race fees.

What do I get?

Your usual race fare plus a little extra bonus

Standard Rewards

Tech Shirt – A nice shirt to wear around and use as a discussion starter amongst fellow runners. Supposedly colorful

Medal– Starfish shaped for a Florida beach theme,  to go with my growing collection (Gasparilla is my favorite, sick looking Jolly Roger).

Bag of Free Swag– This is hit or miss usually. I have paid $20 for 10k’s and received bags packed with tons of goodies, freebies, and useful coupons and paid $65 for a marathon where the bag was so skeletal that the actual, physical bag was the best part of the whole deal. Neither would surprise me with this race.

Post Race Celebration– This one promises bagels, fruits, and pastries which is pretty standard. I plan on grabbing copious handfuls. There is also talk of live entertainment which would be nice. Im picturing some laid back beach style band playing a nice groove. There is also apparently mic ultra on tap, but I dont generally enjoy post run brew.

The little bonus– Im on freaking FT Desoto Beach! I rarely get a chance to go all the way down there and it is a really chill beach and usually lacks the obnoxious crowds of some of the area’s other beaches. Plus this time of year (during the spring) is the only time I really enjoy the beach. Once it gets into April its just too damn hot and no thanks. Right now though, it is usually pleasant and delightful. On this Sunday, I plan on doing post race on a towel and relaxing,  napping,  drifting off and hopefully forgetting the $100.50 I just spent on my last race.

I cant think of a better spot to just chill after a hard morning run

Enjoy your day. Enjoy your run :0

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