Friday, December 19, 2014


Good morning!

It's Friday -- all day long!

I'm excited because Rebecca is home and Luke and Lydia are coming home tomorrow. It's going to be nice to have everyone in the area for the next few days. Merry Christmas indeed!

Yesterday turned out to be considerably different than planned. I did, as planned, take my friend to get his license reinstated. Once at the BMV in Paoli, we were informed the reinstatement had to be done online or by phone. I figured I had enough time to take him back to my office and take care of it.

While I was working on that, I got a text from my police officer friend, my lunch appointment, saying he had been up all night with a situation where someone had shot at the officers and an officer shot and killed the shooter. You can read about it in the papers. Since he had been up all night, he needed to cancel. No problem.

This allowed me to take my friend back to Paoli to get his license. Once there we found out the computer system would take a couple of days to show up the reinstatement payment. We struck out again. Oh well. We did stop to get him insurance for 6 months, and we ate lunch together. He is getting very close to be on the road legally. Patience.

I got a few other things done yesterday as well. Ben and I went to Bedford to run around 5 p.m. Ben was a bit nervous, since he has not run much. Turns out we had a good group, 8 in all. Larry M showed up, and when I saw him, I looked at Ben and said, "Ought oh," with a laugh. He knew it meant a speed increase.

We all were together for the first 3, at which point Ben began to fade. I fell back to keep him encouraged. The rest of the guys continued to run strong and faster. Ben did well and was encouraged when it was all over. Of course, since he is 19, he can/will improve very quickly, so I hope he will keep coming along. It's pretty neat to run with my sons. (Rebecca is training for a half marathon also!)

Tomorrow we run 8 at 8 in the 8-something minute per mile range. Today is a day full of a variety of things, so I best get going! Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, December 18, 2014


Good morning! I hope you are doing well today!

I took yesterday off from endurance athletics, so there is nothing there to report, except that I ate a lot of sweets. Again. Still. Drastic change coming in the next couple of weeks...

Today I take one of my buddies to get his license reinstated and insurance on a truck he bought. He saved up enough money to buy an old truck, so I am going to help him get legal with it. He has not asked for help, but I am concerned about the temptation to drive illegally. He's already done it. Working with guys like him, I am learning all kinds of things people do. Driving illegally is pretty common.

My plan is to get him legal and then join him in an AA meeting. He has the desire to go, he says, and I believe him. I really believe he is trying to get/stay on the right path. He lives a very lonely life and battles depression. It's a whole different world from the one I live in. Ironically, I suppose, after I help the guy this morning, a guy with a long "rap sheet," I'm having lunch with a police officer.

It should be another interesting day. The plan is to run from Parkview at 4:45, grab some supper, and then hopefully go to AA at 8. Between now and then, there will be lots of things happen. Some I will expect and some I won't.

Take care.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


Good morning! I'm dreaming of a white Christmas. Sing it with me! C'mon, you can do it. Looks like there is a chance my dreams will come true. A chance.

Last night was Tempo Tuesday, and the weather was a bit frightful--damp, cool, windy. Once you get going, though, it is really not bad at all. By the time I hit my second tempo mile, I was holding my gloves and hat in my hands. I was working pretty hard at that point. The gloves and hat felt good for the cool-down.

We had 7 show up last night to work: Bill, John, Jim, Jake, Tim, Chris, and me. I would be the "least of these." It's not a position I have held historically, but a couple of factors are in play: 1) everyone slower than me is not showing up, and 2) I have slowed down (temporarily, I hope). Anyway, I am ok with it.

Last night we did 3 tempo miles, and I got to thinking about that. That, I think, is the first time I have run 3 consecutive hard miles since the Persimmon 5K of 2013! I messed up my hamstrings that day and then went into Ironman mode, which required no speedwork. I guess I am encouraging myself regarding my present slowness--it's been a long time since I've done anything fast.

OK, having said all that, here's what I did last night:

Mile 1: 7:21.6
Mile 2: 7:29.9
Mile 3: 7:33.4

I was surprised and encouraged by the first mile. The second mile was my goal pace, and on the third mile, I was feeling really strange toward the end and slowed just a bit on purpose. Overall, I was very pleased. I'm also pleased we are going to stick with 3 mile tempos for another week or two. I hope to lower my overall time, with consistent pacing, to 22:15 next time.

Bill and Jake both ran around 6:40, while everyone else, I think, ran around the 7:10 mark. We are all easing into it, looking to keep lowering our times. I am fairly confident I can get back to at least 7 minutes per mile, hopefully faster. A couple of years ago, I was in the 6:40s. Patience.

Yesterday was a good day of work. Lots of calls and lots of stuff. I felt fairly useful at the end of it all. It's an interesting life, for sure.

Last night after the run, I came home and was thrilled to see Maddie's car in the driveway. As I went to enter the house, I saw sweet little Cora in the window looking at me, being held up by Kedra. Her little smile when she saw me pretty much made my week.

OK another busy day ahead, full of adventure...

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


Good morning! It's warmer this morning than yesterday, which is really nice. This mildish weather is just fine with me. I know change is coming, but, hey, it's almost winter. Time passes so quickly.

I read on Belski's Blog we have reached the earliest sunset, even though we have not quite reached the shortest day. That's interesting. Here's a little excerpt to encourage you, if you are discouraged by the early darkness:

One month from today the sunset will be at 5:47
2 months from today the sunset will be at 6:21.
3 months from today the sunset will be at 7:50 EDT.
I know I'm odd in lots of ways, but I like the long evenings. It's nice to go in and enjoy the warmth of a nice secure place. I guess that's why I did not go swimming again last night. Rebecca came in yesterday afternoon and I wanted to be around with/for her. I think I am looking at January as when I will really get going again. I should be fine. I had some elbow tendinitis, caused by the swimming. It is clearing up now.
Yesterday was a good day. It was a day of meetings and miscellaneous things. It started with a rather mundane 4 mile run. I took it easy, anticipating tonight's 3 mile tempo, anticipating the biggest running week I've had since Ironman. 
OK, I think that's it for this morning. Bye! Thanks for coming by.

Monday, December 15, 2014


Good morning! Wow, it's mild out there. Should be a good morning for an easy run. I need to run, because I have eaten like an out of control pig over the weekend. A lady from church gave me at least 5 pounds of homemade candy. Resistance is futile. Oh well...

The weekend was good! I got to spend a lot of time with Cora, which makes it really nice. She was not feeling well but still managed to be very cute. Yes, I could have a bias here, but. . . I ended up not ending up in the pool Friday night. Kedra and I went to Bloomington and then stopped to see Cora.

Saturday morning we had a good 7 mile run. Running with the group again is so helpful to me. I ran slowly all summer leading up to Ironman. I was coming off hamstring issues and just got in the habit of taking it easy, which was probably what I needed. Now, as I think about another Boston Qualifier, I have to pick it up. The group runs are doing that for me. I like it.

After the run Saturday we went to the pancake fund-raiser for Mark Ryan. It was very nice. I had spent a little time with Mark a week or two ago, taking him some money we raised at the Give Thanks 4. He is a really good man with a really good family. Speaking of the Give Thanks 4. Here are the results.

I will run easy this morning, anticipating Tuesday Tempo tomorrow evening. I think we will be moving up to 3 miles fast. That will be a challenge, a challenge I need and even want, I suppose. Tempo runs are not much fun while doing them, but afterwards you feel good and have a sense of satisfaction. At least that's my experience.

Looks like a busy week ahead. Nothing new really. Things are going well at church, which is a very good thing. OK, I need to get going. Thanks for stopping by, and I hope your week goes well.

Friday, December 12, 2014


Good morning, Friday! So how's it going today? It's one of the coolest mornings in a while, low 20s. The stars are shining brightly. It looks to be a beautiful day on the way.

My goal this morning is to get ready for Sunday. I have a counseling appointment mid morning and a lunch after that, so I have some valuable time this morning to complete what I started yesterday. I have to stay focused. Kedra and I have plans for this afternoon. She is already warning me of "mission creep," you know, adding this stop and that stop to what we already have planned. Nothing a Kindle book can't fix, along with a nap in a sun drenched car, perhaps.

Yesterday was good! We had the excitement of the school being in a lock down mode, due to a couple of guys trying to harm a police officer. All of that carried over into the rest of the town. They finally caught both guys, so all is well again.

I ended the day with a good run. We are working toward establishing a Thursday run at 4:45 from Parkview. It's going pretty well. We slightly alter the usual Hillcrest Circle 5. We had 7 runners yesterday, including Tim the Elder, who has had some knee trouble of late. It was a very pleasant run on a nice sunny late afternoon.

The pool is calling my name for an 8 p.m. meeting. Then in the morning we are running 7 miles. After that we are going to the pancake breakfast fundraiser for Mark Ryan. It should be a fun, full morning.

I bit the bullet and committed to riding my bike outside on Sunday afternoon. It looks to be cool--in the 40s--and now probably cloudy. The forecast for most of the week has been for a sunny Sunday. Oh well, time to man-up and get back in the saddle.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014


Garmin shows its shortness
Good morning! It's Wednesday, which is my long day. Actually it's not any longer than another day or two of the week. From start to finish it is about a 15 hour day. Of course I take a break or two a long the way, and I'm not complaining, not one bit. Really.

I am looking to restore a "day off," now that Daniel, our new minister, is here. He's very impressive, by the way. I would really like to take Fridays off, but I have a few challenges doing so. Oh well, you didn't come here to hear this. Actually, I don't know why you come here? And why do I write this? Too much philosophy this morning...

Anyway, back to what is easy to write about: running. Last night was Tempo Tuesday. We are easing into this, and there are not many of us doing it. We usually wait until January to start, but Dr. Lucky has this new plan he is drawing us all into. I'm actually thankful for him and the plan. It will make me a better athlete and hopefully qualify me for Boston.

Last night Dr. Lucky, John He, Rand, Bill, and I all took off from Parkview. We ran up to the 3 way stop, got ready, and then prepared to do 2 miles of the tempo course. I was the slowest, so I took off first. With the exception of last week, I have not done any speed work this year, so I am trying to be careful.

My goal was to run steady and hard for two miles. Last week I ran with the same goal and ran a 7:27 mile. Last night Bill ran the 2 miles in a 6:40 pace, while Jim, Rand, and John ran a 7:03 average. I was pleased with a consistent effort: 7:28 & 7:29. Here are two views: Garmin Connect and Strava, which simply gets its information from Garmin. The Garmin information is a little more detailed and precise.

The map above illustrates the major flaw of GPS technology: it can't handle circles, so it measures our course around Hillcrest shorter than it is. Our tempo course, we are reminded on a regular basis, was wheeled off and is very accurately measured, which I appreciate. My watch measured the first mile perfectly last night but had trouble with the second, as the map illustrates. I ran the second mile fully, according to Garmin, which means I ran long, which means I ran faster than the 7:29. Follow me?

What does this mean? Not much. I love my Garmin but know it is not totally accurate. It is pretty close, with the exception of measuring a constant circular turn. It is simply a tool, a good one, that helps me stay on pace and measures my heart rate etc. Speaking of that, I was pleased my heart rate, while high, stayed pretty even.

OK, for some of you, this was way more than you wanted, but see the second paragraph - ha ha. Before running yesterday, I had a lot of good stuff go on, helping people and studying for tonight and Sunday. After the run I came home to find Maddie and Cora at my house! I knew they were coming over, so it was incentive to get the run done and get home. It was a great way to end the evening.

Take care!

Tuesday, December 09, 2014


OK, sorry about that. I need to take/get some pictures of Cora. Speaking of Cora, yesterday I was missing her so badly, so I texted Maddie to see if I could come by before or after an appointment I had in Bedford. It turned out to be after, which was shortly before my suppertime. I got the most enjoyable boost in my spirit by spending time with this beautiful little girl. I love making her laugh. Of course I look incredible stupid doing so, but frankly I don't care - ha ha.

Good morning! This is Tuesday, and I think it's going to be a good one. I got up at 4:30. Just woke and was ready to go. I think I slept really well. I didn't kill anyone in my dreams last night. I did kill someone the night before, but, hey, the person really deserved to be killed. He, and I have no idea who he was or why he was trying to board the ship I was sailing/captaining, was trying to kill me. So I managed to push him into the rope he was using to board the ship, and somehow the rope got around his neck... You know I don't know what happened next. I just assumed he died - ha ha.

Yesterday was good, in spite of me being a killer. I did feel a little guilty about it but got over it pretty quickly. I went for a slow 5 mile run. I did not want to work too hard, since I knew Tempo Tuesday was coming. It will be here this evening. Tonight we do 2 miles at our tempo pace. I will probably shoot for a 7:30 pace, which is way off the 6:40s I did not that long ago. I hope to work my way back there. It's going to take a little while.

The rest of yesterday was filled with all kinds of things. I got a lot of things done and interacted with all kinds of people in all kinds of places in life. It was a pretty enjoyable day really. OK, I better get going. Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, December 08, 2014


Good morning! Don't you just love Mondays? Oh, not that much? OK, whatever. It is Monday again, and the week will be over before we know it. Take it one day at a time and live each one fully. How's that for a little pep talk to start your week? Not sure where that came from.

I had a busy weekend. As I mentioned in last post, I went to Louisville for John's brother's funeral. Afterwards I met my cousin for lunch, after calling him on the way down. I made it back to Mitchell mid-afternoon, stopping by our church gym to check on the set-up for the toy sale. Everything was under control.

Friday night was rainy, really rainy. I had made a vow I would go swimming. You should have seen/heard the fight I had with myself about it. My stay-at-home self made the most convincing, compelling argument for not getting out to go swim. In the end, my disciplined self, which has been mostly absent in November, manned up and said, "Shut up! We're going to the pool!" Off we all went.

Friday night at 8 p.m.  when it's raining hard -- the pool would be virtually empty, right? Wrong! There were probably 15 people there. Don't you people have a life!! Evidently they are like me. Oh well, I always seem to end up in lane 1, which is a little wider than the others. I saw Danny G come in, so I hollered at him to join me. I'd rather swim with someone I know than a stranger. My favorite partner is Timmy G, and I'm sure I will be with him soon.

Anyway, I had not been in the water since October 30, so it was a little rough getting going again. I did 500 yards, really trying to begin the journey toward dramatic improvement. I got myself to where I could do Ironman in a respectable way, but it was/is not fast enough for shorter tris. Now I begin the process of becoming respectable in sprints and Olympic distances, positioning myself to do well with a decent bike and run.

Saturday was a big day at church. We had our coat giveway and the ReGeneration Toy Sale, all at the same time, so I was going back and forth between buildings. It's hard to get a specific number, but I think we served around 350-400 people with the coats and other things we gave away. We had two other churches help us out by bringing things: Woodville Baptist brought hats, gloves, and scarves, while Tulip Street Christian brought a bunch of shoes.

Our Toy Sale saw us selling considerably more than $5,000 worth of toys! The average price is probably 2-3 dollars. People were lined up at the doors long before it started. It was a crazy! In a good sort of way. Hundreds of people came and shopped and left with lots of things. I love it when really poor people are able to get nice things for their families.

Before all the things happened Saturday, I went for a 7 mile run. I can tell my body is out of alignment. I will try see a chiropractor this week. I hope to run a little more this week, moving toward the 25, then 30 mile per week mark. I will make it a slow careful climb, avoiding injury hopefully. I need to get on the bike also.

OK, I better get busy. Thanks for coming by.

Friday, December 05, 2014


Good morning! Hey, it's Friday again, if that matters to you. I'm good with it, like all the days of the week. It's supposed to warm up, I hear. I have this crazy thought that perhaps, just maybe, I can ride my bike outside sometime soon. I am really missing the bike.

I could ride my old Softride bike on the trainer, but I don't really like riding inside, though I will have to at some point. I did make a move toward that this week. I took my trainer over to the Energy Lab, next to Dr. Lucky's office. I put my bike on it and have it almost ready to go. I need to hook up my Garmin GSC Sensor, pump up my tires, get my attitude right, and then I will be ready to go.

Yesterday was a good day. I got a lot of work done, preparing for Sunday, plus other stuff. I am working with a frail elderly couple. I've known them for a while, and I am concerned about them. They are poor and declining rapidly in physical and mental health. They have no phone, so yesterday I went and got a TracPhone, took it to them, and got it set-up. The problem is I don't think they will figure out how to use it. I have some professional folks coming in today to evaluate their situation.

This morning I am heading to Louisville. John He's brother died unexpectedly. I am going down for the funeral. John's a good guy and I am sorry he lost his brother.

Tomorrow is a busy, crazy, great day around the our church facilities. We have the famous ReGeneration Store Toy Sale going on. It's nuts but fun. We also are giving away coats to anyone who needs one. We have 100s of coats ready to go. We have lots and lots of wonderful people who make both events happen and bring honor to God.

I hope to squeeze a 7 mile run in in the morning before it all starts. I ran with Roy and Bill last night. It was pretty good. I worked hard to keep up with those two, which is what I want to do. I want to go fast again. It's all relative. I do want to work toward qualifying for the Boston Marathon.

OK, here we go...

Wednesday, December 03, 2014


Good morning! How are you today? Looks like the weather is about like it was went I went to bed, cloudy and in the low 30s. I heard a weather guy on a radio station say yesterday we might not see the sun until the weekend. This is not good for the SAD folks.

I had a good day yesterday, wall to wall. My best time for study and thinking is early in the morning, and presently I am preparing to speak a couple of weeks on the genealogy of Jesus. Scintillating stuff, right? Well, actually, I think it is pretty interesting!

That's how I started my day, and I ended my day with a good meeting, getting home around 9. Instead of working 9-5, I think I did 5-9. Of course there was some down time in there, but not much. There were some interesting things along the way. I was able to visit a guy who has been really sick, taking him a few hundred dollars we raised at the Give Thanks 4. He was tearfully grateful. We visited for a while and then prayed. He is doing well.

Lots of others things took place throughout the day, and then it was time for the Tuesday Night run. Eventually, maybe sooner rather than later, this will be called Tempo Tuesday. Dr. Lucky has visions of eventually doing 10 miles at a fast pace, which IronBird argues is more of a steady-state run. Semantics. Whatever it is, it will be a demanding workout, running miles around a 7 minute per mile pace, if I can handle it.

Last night 4 of us gathered--Dr. Lucky, The Bird, John He, and me--for what I thought was going to be an easy 5 miler. About 1.26 miles in (GPS! ha ha), the Bird stops us and says, "Aren't we going to do a hard mile?" I said, "No!" Dr. Lucky said something similar, I think, but said it low enough to not be heard.

A discussion took place, and result was we would run the first mile of our tempo course. I was concerned about it, because I have not run hard since January/February. I quickly stretched a bit. Bird's watched messed up, so he delayed, while Lucky, JohnHe, and me took off. The result: Bird - 6:20, Lucky & JohnHe - 7:07 (I think), and me? 7:27. Good enough for me! It's a start. Here is the overall run.

The conditions for the run last night: dark and damp. I could do without the darkness, but I really enjoy running in a very light mist. It was in the low 30s but not bad at all. It was an enjoyable time with good friends, just what I needed after a day of trafficking in a world of hurt.

Today is going to be a good and busy one! Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, December 02, 2014


Look what Cora found!
Good morning! How are you today? Looks like a relatively mild start to a relatively mild day. Yesterday's continual drop in temps sure had the feel that we would be in the 20s or teens last night, but it stopped somewhere in the 30s. This is good!

I went out yesterday morning in the wind and the rain. My determination and discipline have arrived in time for December. November saw me, in some ways, let myself go. I had been working for about 2 years on Ironman. I wasn't totally focused or disciplined during those 2 years, but it was never far from my mind.

After Ironman was over I had to give myself permission to relax for a month, which I did. Honestly I don't feel good about much when I am not disciplined physically. It carries over into all areas of my life. December will see me eating better and training more. I am not going to be "all or nothing" about it, just a little more focused. For now.

A spring marathon, the thing I vowed I would not do, is going to be my focus. It's a risk, but the worse thing that can happen is it will be too hot and I won't be able to run it fast like I want. My thinking is Louisville and Boston -- qualify for Boston (2016) by running the Derby Festival Marathon. My running buddies, for the most part, are focused on this event, either the half or full. Training goes so much better when a group is working toward the same goal.

Yesterday was good. After the run, I did what I do all day. There were lots of interruptions, which are my ministry in lots of ways. I helped a few people along the way, working with people grieving and people struggling without enough, enough of lots of stuff.

Today should be another good day. I have several things I hope to accomplish along the way. Who knows what else will happen? It's always interesting. I am looking forward to the Tuesday Night (pre) Tempo Run at 5:15.

Have a good one!

Monday, December 01, 2014


Give Thanks 4
Good morning! Here we go into a full week. I think I was confused more than not last week about what day it was. I love Thanksgiving week, but it throws me off - ha ha.

The big event for me last week was the Give Thanks 4 Road Race. This was our 5th running, and it went really well. We got close to the 200 mark, but waking up to cold, windy, icy conditions probably hurt our "day of" registrations. We had great volunteers, lots of runners, and a great time.

The only problem was ice. There were ice patches on the course. The "hump" on Doc Hamilton was especially dangerous. Our bike escort for the females crashed. She was OK, thankfully. I really enjoy putting on the Give Thanks 4, and it would not be possible without lots of good help from good people.

I had a cold most of last week, which affected my running. I did few miles, mostly the slow variety. I allowed myself all of November to recovery from Ironman. I am usually pretty disciplined but for November I kinda let some things go. So light training plus lots of eating equals more of me. December equals a return to discipline and more training. I am looking forward to it.

We have a new minister at church, Daniel Lee. I am very excited about his arrival and his work. He is going to work in two areas primarily: 1) youth and family, 2) worship. He is going to do very well in both and beyond, I am confident. We had a good start yesterday, after his arrival late Friday night.

OK, I think I am going for a run soon to get December off to a good start. I hope you have a great day!