Some adventures in road and trail running.
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Sunday, November 25, 2007

Being Thankful

We have had a great thanksgiving weekend spending time with friends and family and eating WAY too much food. We have also had some great trail running out enjoying the fine fall weather and God's creation: quiet times to continue the appreciation of how blessed we are and how thankful we should be.

We spent Thanksgiving proper at Ronda and Bill's for an amazing feast and good time with new and old friends. Friday started with some running and then time working on the fish tanks. We ended the day with more food and friends hanging out with the Rouse's in their new home in Canby.

I have been a bit of a slug in terms of training fighting some type of cold or flu. Ronda has been inviting me out with her squad which got me out the door on to the Wildwood trail in Forest Park for a couple of hours on Friday and Sunday morning. Friday we ran out and back starting at Germantown Road. Trisha ran long on Saturday morning while I cleaned out clogged sink drains and watched Harry Potter movies with the kids.

Sunday was a loop course from Upper Macleay park to the Nature trail down to Leif. Then to Wild Cherry and back to the park on Wildwood trail. The group even started early for me on Sunday so we could still make church :-) There is a nice gallery of park images here.

We had talked about doing some kind of turkey trot race this weekend but it just did not come together. Have to try for a jingle bell run.

Besides getting me out for longer runs, Ronda also tagged me for 5 random little facts:

1. I grew up in a little northern town called Prince George, B.C. Canada. Great town to grow up in. Great town to leave after you are grown up.

2. I once planted over 100, 000 tree seedlings in 4 months doing my summer job as a tree planter in the wilds of British Columbia. I even looked pretty similar to this guy minus the safety hat: link. This was great training for becoming an ultra runner and reminds me to be very thankful for my desk job.

3. In college I bred and raised Siamese fighting fish (Betta splendens). This was how I learned patience...ask me about it on a long run some time :-)

4. I prefer cold, day old pizza over any other type. Meat lovers. Not too much cheese.

5. My first trail race was the Trail Mix 25 km run in Bloomington Minnesota on April 19, 2003. Ran this with my friend Steve who was encouraging me to try longer runs. This was back when I thought Minnesota was hilly :-)

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

All over but the conference

The submissions deadline for EclipseCon 2008 has come and gone. Time for some reflection.

Browsing the submissions system we have over 474 proposals for tutorials, short and long talks.

In the Committer and Contributor category (track) that I am responsible for, we have 7 long talks, 8 short talks and 2 tutorials proposed.
I am particularly fond of: So You Want to Run: EclipseCon Exercise :-)

Jump in and voice your opinion.

You are invited to review the submissions, ask for more information, and provide comments and critiques.

Once again it is your chance to get involved and shape a part of Eclipse.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Lizards and Snakes

After a great run with Ronda, Stacey and Tom to start the day, Leah, Cole and I went to the Reptile Show and Sale.

Joining up with our friends Mark, Hailey and Jake we drove down to the Portland Expo center for the show.

It was cool. More snakes, geckos, frogs and chameleons than you can shake a stick at. The vendors were all really friendly and open to questions. The kids got to handle pretty much everything but an alligator...and they even asked to do that! Corn snakes and bearded dragons appear to be Cole and Leah's favorites. Mice, albino geckos and the larger chameleons round out the top five.

With Trisha's standing edict of "No snakes!", I believe the family is leaning towards the dragon and I see some type of cold blooded animal besides fish taking up residence in our home in the not too distant future.

With our church annual Thanksgiving Soup and Bread I had better get out for another run today so I can have the appetite to properly sample all the great food!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Eclipse DemoCamps

There is an effort to have Eclipse DemoCamps around the globe in November and December.

What is an Eclipse DemoCamp?
Stealing from the wiki:

Eclipse DemoCamp is an opportunity to showcase all of the cool interesting technology being built by the Eclipse community. It is also an opportunity for you to meet Eclipse enthusiasts in your city.

The format of the DemoCamp is pretty informal. The idea is for a group of Eclipse enthusiasts to meet up and demo what they are doing with Eclipse. The demos can be of research projects, Eclipse open source projects, applications based on Eclipse, commercial products using Eclipse, whatever you think might be of interest to the attendees. The only stipulation is that it is Eclipse related.

Sounds good to me. I signed up for the Demo Camp in Portland, Oregon.

Ensure to organize / find / attend a demo camp in your local area.

Also plan to get your EclipseCon submissions in...the November 19th deadline is almost here.I'm going to EclipseCon 2008Tutorial, long talk, short talk: you decide how best to share your expertise.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Autumn Leaves 50km

Today I raced the 50km at the ORRC Autumn Leaves race.
The race occurs at Champoeg state park and is a loop course. I ran around in 5 mile circles for around 4 hours and really enjoyed it!
As always it was great to have my family and friends out cheering all of us on. Leah had great fun in the signature leaves.

I am really stoked from the result and I am really sore...but in a good way :-) Any race with no blisters is a good race.

Race director Fritz Pieper does an amazing job of putting on this late season race: course was marked very well with lots of enthusiastic volunteers. They even finally figured out how to get everyone to do the same course and the right distance for the initial out and back :-) Fritz also gives out birthday cards to all the people who have birthdays close to the race day...and the swag was great as well. Thanks man!
It was great fun to see everyone so many times with the loop course: Olga, Tom, Jeff, Dave, Lynn, Stan, Susan, Rich, and Beast. There is a 10km, 50km and 50 miler running concurrently so I would guess about 200 people running around.
In a weird twist I ran the ultra and Stacey and Ronda did the 10km. Made me slightly jealous :-)

Seeing other runners and the volunteers inspires you to keep giving your best. It certainly did not hurt to try to keep up with some of the 10 kers or think about how glad you are that you are not doing the 50 miler :-) Thanks to all for the inspiration!

I finished in 4:00:58 (7:45 per mile) which was good enough for first overall.
Splits (1.2 mile loop, then six 4.9 mile loops)

This was my second fastest ultra and it validates the speed training that I have been doing lately. I stuck to the Ronda / Stacey fueling plan and had zero troubles with low energy or digestion problems. Gel every 23 minutes (after the first 40 minutes or so) whether I felt I needed it or not. It is fun when the training and planning works.
The only mistakes I made were not doing a negative split and forgetting headphones for my spanky new iPod shuffle that Trisha got me for my birthday. Argh...having my tunes would have likely given me the 59 seconds to slip under 4 hours. There is just no way to run slow rockin' out to Skillet!. Oh well, I made the USATF happy :-(

If you are looking for a well organized and supported ultra late in the season this one is it. We even had amazing weather this year: no wind or rain and the fog looked great. The race even starts at a 8 am so you do not have to crawl out of bed to early.
This is also a great race for first time ultra runners. Just get over the mental hurdle of passing the finish line soooo many times :-)
It was great to see the first timers out there challenging themselves and diggin' deep!

I know I will be back...with my headphones :-)

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Going to Boston

Flight is booked and entry form sent in. $110 dollars worth of fun to run the 2008 Boston Marathon!

Possibly the hardest part was actually getting the flight booked. Why, oh why does Northwest Airlines make it soooo hard to book a flight using airmiles? Oh right...because they do not want you to use them :-)

Going to race this beast again.
Boston is where I ran my slowest marathon in 2004.
Boston is where I set my marathon PR in 2005.

I will be training hard to once again attempt to burst through that elusive barrier of the 3 hour marathon.

As well, Trisha and I love the food in Boston: Mike's City Diner for breakfast after the race!

Towards that path I am racing in the Autumn Leaves 50km this Saturday. Weather is looking good and I am looking forward to pounding this race and striving for an A goal of around 4 hours.