Monday, November 25, 2013

My Poor Blog

My dear blog, I have been so neglectful of you and those who may or may not read your sorry words.  There was I time I wrote on you daily… but no more.

Eh… enough of that.

So, the silly season is upon us once more and I cringe at the very thought of it.  Call me a Grinch if you’d like but I really don’t like Christmas carols, the lights, the creepy inflatable… things… in everyone’s front yards (save mine!).  Yes, they’re creepy.  I swear that they watch me as I run by on my nightly runs.  It’s not enough that I have to run in the cold and snow, but now I have to worry that one night I’m going look behind me to see some inflatable Santa running after me with a butcher knife.
“Ho-Ho-Ho! Come back here!  You’ve been a very naughty boy!”

Last January, I set a goal of running 1000 miles in 2013.  And for the first couple of months I was on track to reach that goal… but… it was not to be.  In reality, it was an unrealistic goal for my fitness level.  Right now my Garmin says that I’ve run 458.7 miles this year, so I figure that if I can pound out 42 more miles in the next 5 weeks, I’ll end with just about 500 miles, which isn’t too bad in my estimation.  So, I think that my goal for next year will be to sweeten that goal by 100 miles for 2014.  That’s a more achievable goal in my estimation.

BB’s doing well.  She’s healthy and happy, but there are ice storms in Arkansas today so I’m a bit worried that she’s staying warm and all.  I’ve told her to go buy whatever she needs to stay warm, and I hope she does.
Have a happy Thanksgiving everyone, and a Happy Hanukah to my Jewish friends out there.

Stay Safe!

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

The October Non-Recap

Sorry… I really don’t have an update for October.

All I really have is news that I’ve been freaking out over for the last couple of weeks

Ready for it?


I’m in IMDb!  *Insert girlish squeal here*

Check it out…  And Yes… Michael Porter is my real name… don’t ask me where Murph came from, it’s a long geeky story.

The full IMDb page is Here
I swear, I feel like Steve Martin in "The Jerk," when he find his name in the phone book and starts yelling "I'm somebody now!"  So, if Spielberg calls, tell him I'll have to call him back. ;)

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Last Week's Fun

This last week, my wife and I were able to go down to Southern Utah to take in a couple of shows at Tuacahn. If you are unfamiliar with Tuacahn, it is a theatre and a center for the arts and art education. They are located in a small redrock box canyon, which allows for some fantastic staging.

In the time that we were there we were able to see “Thoroughly Modern Millie” and “Starlight Express.” One we knew very well from the Julie Andrews film, the other we had only heard of, but had no idea what we were in for.

“Millie” was wonderful, well staged, and very well acted. Laura Taylor, who played Millie Dillmount was a delight to watch and was a fantastic singer. Nicole Powell, who played Muzzy Van Hossmere was absolutely amazing. Unlike the goofy Carol Channing “Muzzy” from the movie, Powell’s Muzzy was respectable and serious. I didn’t mind much because Powell could sing the heck out of all of her songs.

Wednesday night we didn’t see a play, and so I took a 4 mile run through the streets of St. George. I ran through the historic district, past the old Tabernacle, then down to the St. George Temple, and finishing with a two mile uphill slog back to our Motel on St. George Blvd. When I was done, I finished with 3 laps of the pool, and realized that I really need to do more upper body work.

Thursday night, we returned to Tuacahn for “Starlight Express.” Never having seen or heard anything of this play by Sir. Andrew Lloyd Webber, we had no idea what to expect.

A storm had blown through earlier that day, and since the theatre is outside we were preparing for some rain, but by the time the play started the clouds blew away, the stars came out and it turned into a very nice night.

The stage was completely transformed from the play the other night, and now had “roads” that extended out into the audience, and the stage looked like a skate park. The reason being, all of the characters were train engines and cars, and all of the actors were on roller-skates.

“Starlight” was magical and strange. And while the costumes and makeup were incredible, the makeup artist in me began thinking of all the incredible things that you could do with this story.

The story centers around a First-Class passenger car named “Pearl” played by Delaney Westfall, who is torn between her love for a simple steam engine, and the flash and power of a diesel engine and an electric. Meanwhile, the steam engine, “Rusty” played by Steven Goldsmith, is trying to prove himself to “Pearl” and to find his worth in the world of trains. It sounds pretty goofy, but when you realize that it all takes place in the mind of a child named “Control,” it all seems to make sense.

There is one musical number that just sticks in my mind, “Pappa’s Blues” sung by an old steam engine named “Pappa” and played brilliantly by C. Mingo Long, who sings with a wonderfully powerful baritone voice.

I can’t say the “starlight” is one of my favorite plays, but it is definitely in the top 10.

So, it was a fun week, and was great to get away for just a little while with the wife.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

BB Update

Two weeks ago we dropped BB off at the Missionary Training Center in Provo, and just last Tuesday she flew out of the Salt Lake City Airport to her Mission in Littlerock.  Her mission President sent Pictures.

BB With her Mission President and his Wife
All of the brand new "Greenie" Missionaries for Littlerock

The thing that struck me about this second picture is the number of new missionaries.  When I served my mission... more years ago than I care to say... there were 5 of us that went out together.  (4 Elders and 1 sister.)  I think that BB went out with something like 30 other missionaries.  This is just awesome!

Monday, September 30, 2013

September Recap

September Miles: 31 miles.
Races: Zombie Fun Run 5k.  It was a fun little 5k.  Just like most Zombie Runs, the “Survivors” got a 2 minute head start.  We had flags tucked into our waste bands that the “Zombies” could collect (if they could catch you).  I crossed the finish line with flag intact.  I also got a 5k PR that morning.  It was a good morning.

Next Race: Nothing on the horizon.
Reading: Michael Vey; The Rise of the Elgen, by Richard Paul Evans.  I’ve kind of resisted this series.  Because, even though I’m a Mormon, I don’t read Mormon authors unless their name is Orson Scott Card.  But my kids decided that we needed to go to the pre-release party for the 3rd book.  So we went, met Mr. Evans and had our books signed.  I was so impressed with how down to earth Mr. Evans was, so I stared reading the series.  They’re not bad.  Obviously written for a younger audience, but a pretty good story.

Listening: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, by Washington Irving.
Latest Obsession: We dropped BB off at the MTC (Missionary Training Center) last Wednesday (I’ll post pictures soon.  So far we haven’t heard a word from her.  As a missionary, she can’t call home, and so we’re anxiously awaiting a letter or an email… Something!

Netflix Habit: I just finished Alphas, it was really good, and I was sad to find out that the cliff-hanger at the end of season 2 will never be resolved because the series was cancelled… It’s Firefly all over again… (sob!) sorry… I’ll be ok…
Blessing: I’m so happy that my younger kids have such a great example in their older sister.  BB is going to be great as a missionary (As a part of the largest Missionary force in the history of the planet.  Over 70,000 young men and women).

Irk:  I watched “The Cove” about the slaughter of Bottlenose Dolphins in Taiji, Japan, and now I’m all ticked off and stuff!  I wrote a blog about my feelings… but I have yet to post it.  I should probably do some editing of naughty words before I do.
Whoo Hoo!: My son has qualified for his Orange Belt.  He’ll be tested on it later this month.

Oooo Ahhh:  I found some new running pants at REI, totally on sale!  So now I can get rid of my old, 1980’s style wind pants this winter!  Can I get an Amen!?!
One Last Thing:  I love this!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Rethinking my Motivations

Lately I’ve been thinking about why I run.  I know that I started because I wanted to lose some weight, get my heart in better condition, maybe even get to a point where I no longer need to take my blood pressure meds.  And then I ran my first marathon, and suddenly it became, “I can beat 5:15.”  I’ve even had small delusions of grandeur where I think “If I find the right race, and be a bit more dedicated to the training, I could get a BQ, all I need to do is knock 1:50 off of my time.”

And then came Saturday.
I had been signed up for a half marathon, that was suddenly and thankfully (since I wasn’t really trained for it) cancelled.  And since I’m an alumnus of Team in Training I had been invited to work a water stop in the Big Cottonwood Marathon.  That’s always fun, so we went.

I’ll definitely work this marathon again because the volunteer jerseys are really nice.
Anyway, our water stop was at about the 25 mile marker, and at about 2 or 2.5 hours into the marathon, we had our hands full with the main pack of the half marathon, when I looked up the road and could see a couple of guys carrying a third between them.  The third guy was slumped over, barely conscious, so I yelled at my wife, to get a chair ready.

When these guys got up to us, I could see that the unconscious guy had a full marathon bib on, but the other two guys didn’t have any kind of bib at all.  When Terri told them to put the runner in the chair, they said “No, he can make the last mile.” 
I love it when my wife gets mad, and it’s not directed at me.
“He’s not even awake!” she said, “Put him in the chair!”  So rather than tangling with a 5'-5" mother of 4, they wisely put their friend in the chair, at which point they began to try to revive him with water and Gatorade.

When I looked over at them, I was kind of praying that this guy wouldn’t die, because we was looking like he was considering it… and I’m not being metaphorical here.  He was seriously looking like he was about to expire.
At about that time a police officer rode up on his motorcycle, and immediately contacted medical.  The whole time this was going on, the two guys who had dragged the patient in to the water stop were insisting that this potential corpse was capable of finishing the last 1.2 miles.  When the cop asked them who they were, one of them said that he was his coach.  HIS COACH!?!  Are you freaking kidding me?

Well, "the coach" shut up pretty fast when the medics arrived, checked the runner’s blood oxygen levels and immediately slapped an O2 mask on his face, they then decided that he was most likely severely dehydrated as well and started an IV.  A few minutes after that, the runner started coming around.  He was then put in an ambulance and driven to an area hospital.
I just could not believe the stupidity of that coach.  And I started to wonder… is a BQ that important?  Is it so important that you would put your health, your life in the hands of some guy who would rather drag your lifeless carcass over the finish line, than have you not finish?

So ya… I started reevaluating the reasons why I run, and what it is I want to accomplish with my running, and I’ve decided that running is really only my way of finding balance in my life.  That through running I can do great things for my health and my body, and that while I may run races in the future, I will be doing it for fun, and to maybe race my own personal bests, but I know my limits and while I may push those limits, I know that a BQ is beyond those limits, and I'm Okay with that.
I will go to Boston one day, and I will most likely try to go as a volunteer.  I will try to work a water stop, or an aid station, or anything else.  And I will rejoice in the spectacle that is the human spirit.

Monday, September 09, 2013

A Bit of an Update

I don’t know if any of this will be good reading… but here goes anyway.


As BB gets closer to leaving on her mission, it seems that my stress levels are going up, but that isn’t keeping us from having quite a bit of fun.  Last weekend ComiCon came to Salt Lake, and while I didn’t have the time to go, that didn’t stop BB from taking in the geek fest.  She was even able to get her picture taken with a couple of the Power-Rangers.  Ya… Power-Rangers.  She went all fan-girl when she told me about it… and I just tried to smile and tell her that I thought that was great.  Power-Rangers?

Framing Problems
Over the last few weeks I’ve been able to draw up some house plans for a new client… and it has not been fun.  One thing I’ve found with drawing plans is that when a project is right, it’s really right and I never hear about it until it’s built.  But when a plan starts to head south, it just picks up speed.  In this case, I told my client that because it was a really simple house, I’d give them a discount from my normal price.  In this case it was about a $350 discount.  And then things started going bad.  First off, me and the contractor went round and round about some stupid idea he had for the roof… one that was geometrically impossible.  And now the Civil engineer is telling us that the dimensions he gave us on the site were measured from a different place (center of the road instead of front property line) and now the house doesn’t fit on the property.  What else can happen?  I hate this!

Soldier Hollow Sunburn
On Labor Day, we decided to take the kids up to Soldier Hollow for a Sheep Dog competition.  So much fun!  We watched Dogs herd sheep, watched a splash dog competition, had a look at some exotic animals, and (since I’m a redhead) got Sooooo sunburned.  Right now my forehead is suffering from some sort of pealing leprosy.  When we left the house that morning, it was cloud covered, and pretty drizzly, but when we got up there… it was bright and sunny, so we had no sunscreen… only rain gear.  So much for being prepared.

We did see an exotic animal presentation, though, and it was so interesting.  We were able to see and touch chinchillas, a turtle, a hedgehog, and an animal from my home state that I have never seen before.  It’s called a “Ringtail.”  When the lady pulled it out of its crate, everyone thought that it was a ring-tailed lemur.  But as it turns out it’s not a primate, but related to raccoons, and can be found in southern Utah.  Who Knew?

So… here I am… on the raggedy edge.  Trying to keep it together, while the world is a blur around me.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Wordless Wednesday... okay... there are a few words.

B with the Utah Jazz Stunt Team

A... not to be outdone by her big sis.

What do you know... Smoking really is a tool of the devil.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Three Things on a Thursday

The Pumpkin Plant is Dead

The little pumpkin plant that was growing on the side of the road is dead.  From the looks of it and the other dead weeds around it, it looks to me like a road maintenance crew hit it with Round Up.  I couldn't bring myself to take a picture of it...


So, I have a question…

I’m a Mormon, and I’m a runner.  For quite a while now I’ve been using gels as a nutritional boost during my longer runs.  I’ve avoided flavors like “Cappuccino” and “Mocha” knowing that they contain coffee, even if it’s just a small amount, because of my belief in the Word of Wisdom.

If you don’t know, the Word of Wisdom is a health code given to us (Mormons) as a guide of what we should and should not be put into our bodies, which is why Mormons (generally) don’t drink Coffee, Tea, or Alcohol, and we (generally) don’t smoke.  Now contrary to popular belief, we are not prohibited from drinking Coke or any other caffeinated, sugary drinks… but we probably should be.  But, anyway, I’ve been using the Word of Wisdom as my primary nutritional guide as a runner.  Up my grain intake, lower the amount of meat… that kind of thing.

So, the other day I was cleaning up some of my Chocolate GU packets that had spilled out of their box, and (for some reason) began reading the ingredients: Organic Tea (green) extract (contains caffeine).   From that, I went on to find out that several of the gels I’ve used also have the same green tea extract in them.  Now, the caffeine isn’t my question, but the tea extract is (I’m not really sure what “extract” means.  Is it tea?  Is it some chemical from tea?  Is it just caffeine sucked out of a tea leaf?).
So here’s my question… as a Mormon, am I okay to keep using these Gels even though they contain some kind of tea... extract?  Or do I need to find something else?  I’m not a deep doctrinal kind of religious person and I rely on the advice of others quite a lot.

So what are your thoughts?  Even if you aren’t Mormon, what would you do in my shoes?

I love this Band!

The other day, I was looking through the NPR web site and came across a video of one of their "Tiny Desk Concerts" of a band called "Alpine" from Australia.  I totally fell in love with their sound!
Here's a sample:

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Saying Goodbye

I’m kind of having a rough day today.

I’ve been a scoutmaster for 13 years now.  So long that I’ve seen boys go through scouting, a few got their Eagles, a few have served LDS missions, at least one (that I know of) has gotten married and just had his first child, and one… well… one, I attended his funeral.
Last night, I was informed that I am being released from my calling at the 11-year-old scout master.  You see, in Mormon troops, you don’t volunteer to be an adult leader in the scout troop, you are asked (“called”) to be an adult leader by the bishop (the presiding authority in your congregation).

It stands to reason that it was time for me to be released.  Most people serve in a calling for no more than just a few years and I’d been there for over a decade.  As the 11-year-old leader, I was officially an assistant scoutmaster to the scoutmaster of the troop, even though we operated independently of the troop.  I know it’s confusing, but it kind of makes sense if you understand how the LDS church is organized.  Anyway, I served with 3 different scoutmasters, under 3 different primary presidencies, and two different bishops… and that was only in my current troop, I’ve actually been in two.
When I started out as an 11-year-old scout leader, in the summer of 2000, I was scared to death.  I had dropped out of scouting as a youth, with only my eagle project left to do.  I had no idea what I was doing… but I had good boys.  Jordan, Chad, & Craig, they were great!  Jordan was so small that when we put a backpack on him for our first hike, we couldn’t get the hip belt small enough to fit his waist.  It just hung there… it makes me laugh just to think about it.  This week, he became a father… and I can’t tell you how proud I am of him.  He has grown into a fine man.

There have been so many boys through the years.  So many memories.  So much laughter, so much frustration, so many good times… and at least one tragedy.  I’ll never forget the morning that I got a call from Norm, a fellow scoutmaster with whom I worked quite a while back, informing me that Clint had passed away from Meningitis while in his freshman year at Weber State.  I guess when you work with the youth long enough, something like this is bound to happen, but it didn’t have to happen to one of my boys.
I loved being a scoutmaster.  I loved every part of it, and it is something that I will miss very dearly… even that dorky uniform.

Thursday, August 01, 2013

July Recap

July Miles:  Ummm… Miles?  Nothing to see here people… move along… go about your lives…  No, really I ran about 20 miles… or so…  I’m thinking that the half in September is going to be a suck-fest if I don’t get on the stick.
Races:  Move along…  Really... just don't look back...

Next Race:  “Only Half Crazy” in mid-September.
Reading:  The Puppet Masters by Robert A. Heinlein.  This was the book that inspired “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” and (I’m thinking) “Falling Skies.”

Listening:  Right now I’m listening to a lecture on the literary origins of the Holy Grail, by Professor Monica Potkey of The College of William and Mary.  It’s really good.  I know... Geek!
Latest Obsession:  “The Music Man” By the Cottonwood Heights Arts Council.  I can’t think of anything else when I’m working a play.  I know, I’ve tried.

Netflix Habit:  I don’t have one right now.  I get on and just don’t feel like watching anything.
Blessing:  I’m blessed that I have so many things I can do.  I have a strong (if pudgie) body that can run when I want it to.  I have wonderful kids, and a beautiful supportive wife.  What more can a guy ask for?

Irk: My folks were forced to close the candy store… Sad.
Whoo Hoo!: We were able to go see Lindsey Stirling play with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.  She was Awesome!

Oooh Ahh: I found out that Shatner (the one and only James T. Kirk) is going to be at the Salt Lake Comic Con… Oh man!  Where do I go for tickets?

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Disappointment... and just a little bit of wonder.

Since running is pretty much a non-starter for me this month (I don't even want to know my running totals for the month, because I'm sure that they are dwarfed by the fluid ounces of Mountain Dew I've been downing)  I thought that I'd talk about a couple of the other things going on in my life right now.

My parent's candy store closed last week, and so we spent Sunday afternoon cleaning out the building.  Everyone took it pretty well, we were just disappointed that we just couldn't get it to go.  In the end, when just about everyone was gone and I was doing some final sweeping up, I found my youngest, "A," standing all alone in the dark empty front store.
"What's up, Kiddo?" I asked.
"I was going to work here when I got bigger." she said, tears in her eyes.
"I know." I said.
We stood together in the empty store for a while, said goodbye to the space, then walked out into the sweet summer rain, and locked the door for the final time.  Now it will become something really depressing, like a baby GAP.

On my way to work today I walked past a little miracle.  There's a pumpkin plant growing on the side of 9000 South, just east of State Street.  I had seen it growing a couple of days ago on my walk into work, and thought that it might be a weed, but this morning it had a blossom, and it's definitely a pumpkin.

I remember that there were a couple of smashed pumpkins on the road last fall, but I never figured that any of those scattered seeds could actually germinate.  I'm interested to see if it is left alone long enough to actually produce a pumpkin.

It's funny.  This world can be so screwed up sometimes, but at the end of it all... life finds a way, and that small, simple spark of life can bring such wonder.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Yes, I'm still alive... but you wouldn't know it from my blog.

I figured that I would at least get one posting in the blog before the end of the month.

Running has been a huge and complete fail this month. Not because of injury but because of Scout camp, Girl’s camp, Play practice (I’m working on The Music Man for the next couple of weeks), and the general craziness that accompanies getting a kid ready to go on a mission.

My view of the sunrise over Bear Lake from the cabin at Scout Camp

Where my life will be for the next 2 weeks
The garden, on the other had is doing great! Tonight, we ate the first of our “Sun Sugar” cherry tomatoes. They were so sweet and so yummy. One of the kids asked, “why aren’t the tomatoes at the store this good?”

Do I really need to answer that?

Yes, I know there are some weeds...  I'll pull them... sometime.
I look at the garden almost every day, and I am always amazed with the changes that happen between 5:45am when I run to catch my bus, and 6pm when I get home. Vines are larger, blooms are open, colors have changed. It’s truly wondrous.

Baby Cantaloupe
We have about 4 cantaloupes growing on the vine in the front yard garden and are growing so fast, you can almost see the change happening.

Baby Watermelon

In the back garden, we have 3 watermelons growing (that I can find in this extensive vine). And the cool part is, I don’t water them. Well, I do, but not the normal way. The watermelons are part of an experiment. A few months ago I read about watering by Olla. An Olla is a clay pot that you bury in the ground near your plants, then, instead of watering the plants directly, you fill the pot (olla). The water then leaks out of the side of the pot (through the clay) as the plants need the water. It’s supposed to save on evaporation loss, and thus save water, which is really important here in the west. The olla system is working so well that I think that I’m going to use it exclusively next year. Maybe even rig up a rain water capture system to fill the ollas.

You can't really see it very well, but this is one of the ollas.
The stone on top keeps the water from evaporating.

Anyway… there you go.

Sorry for the boring blog. Life should even out here pretty soon, and I can get back to running, blogging, and relaxing.

Here are some other pics of the garden.

This is the bird feeder we put in a crab-apple tree next to the garden.
Attracting the birds here has really cut down on the grass hoppers.


Rambling Red Stripe Tomatoes


Baby Cucumbers... at least I think that's what it is,
I've never grown cucumbers before.

Monday, July 01, 2013

June Recap... Already?

Oh my gosh! June is over already?

Ok, Here we go…

June Miles: 38 Miles. What? That’s pretty sad, especially when you figure that 20 of those miles were on the Ragnar. Well, I guess I had better step it up a bit this month.

Races: Ragnar Wasatch Back. Two fun-filled days with 11 of my closest friends.

Next Race: Isn’t until the end of September… I have time…

Reading: Compost by Ken Thompson. Not a riveting read, but…

Listening: Farm City by Novella Carpenter. It’s the true story of a woman who moves into the slums of Oakland California, and then builds a small farm on a squatted piece of land. It’s pretty good, but the language is a little rough.

Latest Obsession: Still the garden. It seems to be coming along just fine despite the 103 temps. But something is going wrong with my corn. I’m not sure if it’s a pest or something nutritional. Since I’m trying to grow our garden as organically as I can… I’m stumped.

Little slice of Heaven

We have little Tomatoes!  This one is from a variety
called the "Rambling Red Stripe"

What is happening to my Corn?

Beets!  Yum!

Netfix Habit: Finished all the season’s of Whale Wars. Looking for something new.

Blessing: I’m getting so much side work. Last weekend I shot a commercial for Bullfrog Spas. So much fun! And this time… I got paid! I’ll post the reel when it’s finished.

I can't wait to see the finished product.
Irk: What is wrong with my Corn!?!

Whoo Hoo!: My son passed his Yellow Belt test in Kempo. Pretty proud of him.

Oooh Ahh: I’ve been eyeing a new bow… but we’ll see. ;)

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Race Recap... Ragnar Wasatch Back

Last weekend marked my 3rd time running the Ragnar Wasatch Back and my 5th relay race since I started doing them.  (I’ve run Ragnar Las Vegas twice now.)  This was a fun one since it was also the 10th running of the Wasatch back since they started it in 2004.

And since it was the 10 year anniversary of Ragnar, they did some special things.  They expanded the field of runners and then added a day of running time.  They designed a massive “spinner” medal for the finishers.  They designed a special shirt for the Wasatch Back.  The Governor of Utah proclaimed that June 22 is now “Ragnar Day” in Utah.  They added to the stuff at the finish line and then had a big “after party” at the Canyons Resort.  It was a big deal.
As for me, it was just one more challenge.  Since I was the veteran in our van, I was given one of the more challenging positions.

Our challenge started on Monday the 17th (4 days before the race) when one of our team mates called it quits because of a stress fracture in his foot.  So calls and emails went out to almost every local runner we could think of (who we knew wasn’t on a team yet) to see if we could fill that spot.  We lucked out finding Kathy, who is a fantastic runner.
On Thursday night we got out of Salt Lake pretty late and didn’t get to Logan until about 10pm.  One of my team mates had arranged with a friend of his, who happens to live in Logan, to crash at her house for the night.  This totally rocked over last year since, this time, we had beds to sleep on instead of the floor of some random Super8.

Our start time was 6:30am, so we were up and ready to go by about 5:10am.  At check in we met up with Linda, our 6th van mate who had driven up with her husband and had stayed with her niece.
While waiting for our start, I ran into some former team mates, Jared and Jo, who were starting at the same time.  We had run Vegas together back in 2009.  So that was cool.

First Leg

I was runner number 3, and so my first leg was #3 which took me 6.7 miles through the farming town of Hyrum and into the neighboring town of Paradise (where the grass is green and the girls are pretty).
It was fairly flat and a nice little run.  I finished in 1:13:27 right on my predicted pace of 11 minutes per mile.  I felt good because it was a nice day and my hamstring was behaving itself.

Second Leg

Leg 15 went through another farming area in the Morgan Valley along the Weber River.  This one was only 4.9 miles, in the twilight hours before night, so I didn’t worry too much about supplements.  I downed a GU before the exchange and had some Nuun in my bottle because it was a little warm, but I didn’t think that I would need much more than that.  I really should have put a SaltStick in my pocket, because 3 miles down the road, I was sweating like I’d sprung a leak, and the Nuun just could not keep up with my loss.  So lesson learned… and I came in a bit slower than I wanted to at 57:40. Pace of 11:22 minutes per mile.
After our second legs, we booked it to Coalville and North Summit High School where we tossed out our sleeping bags in the auditorium and (at least for me) fell quickly asleep… in my stinky running cloths.

They woke me up at 4:30, and we headed out to the last exchange in Oakley.

Third Leg

Leg 27, my final leg started in the town of Francis.  There I ran into a bloggy friend, Sussett from You’ll Always Have My Heart. And found out that we would be running the same leg.  That’s always fun.  My runner came in before her’s did, but I had no fear because I know that she’s a better runner than I am.  And I was right… she killed me somewhere around the 6th mile when I was struggling up a really long hill.  Despite the suck that was the uphill, the view was fantastic.  Jordanelle was a beautiful blue as we ran past it.  I finished this 7.5 mile leg in a sad 1:31:59, with a pace per mile of 11:56.  I blame the hills.

After passing off to Van 2, we headed to a Middle School in Heber, and paid a well spend $5 for a very cold shower and a warm towel.  It was awesome getting clean and then went off to find food.  Since we were in Heber I suggested that we stop at “Granny’s” for lunch.  Granny’s is this little burger and malt shop on Main Street in Heber.  It’s a small place (actually a house) that produces some of the best onion rings in the state.  So… we ate well.
The team was able to shave off an hour from our finish time from last year, and finished in 34:43:22 and since there were over 300 teams that finished after us, I say… not bad for a bunch of old(er) folks.

This year was a fun one for me, and I was lucky enough to score the slap bracelet from our final runner.  I think that she felt bad for me because I had now finished 5 of these things and had yet to keep the bracelet.

Is that a big stinkin' spinner medal or what?
I got home, kissed my wife, put on a movie and slept for 13 hours.  I awoke Sunday morning with no pain or stiffness… I’m guessing it’s because of the marathon training.  Four of my team mates go to the same church as I do, and after services they were moving slowly and stiffly.  I hated to tell them that I was ready to go running.  *Evil Laugh*


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Catching up on a Tuesday

Things have gotten out of hand!  No time for blogging, no time for life.

Monday:   Decided that since Wasatch Back was almost here, I had better log a few miles, I decided to do a short five miles.  I don’t know if it was a real pull or just a cramp because of the heat but the hamstring on my right leg started to get sore.  Later that night and the next day I had a great limp.  Ended up resting it all week and it feels lots better.  I hope it holds up through Ragnar.
Friday: After logging 50 hours behind my desk for the week (Yay for the paycheck, Boo for everything else)  I grabbed my girls to head out to a Daddy Daughter camp with our church.  We couldn’t stay for the night because we were doing a water stop for the AF Half Saturday morning, but we figured we could go out and enjoy a little camp fire action and roasted Twinkie like cakes.  (trust me they're good that way.)  Once we got there, my youngest started to not act like herself… long story short, we went back home with a 102f fever.

Saturday:  4:00am, the older kids and I left Mom and the youngest at home so that we could drive to American Fork for Aid Station #5 of the AF Half.  We had everything set up by 6:15am, and the first runner (sprinter) passed us at about 6:40am.  That guy was moving.

We had lots of fun.

Sunday: Father’s Day.  Everybody slept in, but just before leaving for church my Wife and Kids gave me a nifty medal hanger that says “Just Believe” on it.  There is a reason.  Whenever I attempt a new distance, or a new goal time, I start to doubt myself and my wife’s thing is to tell me to “Just Believe” that I can do it.  So I thought that it was pretty special.  But after getting it on the wall and hanging up my medals, I realized that really don’t have very many… guess I need to run more.
So, fun weekend, and so far, today, the youngest is fever free… *Happy Dance*

Monday, June 03, 2013

May Recap

May Miles: 58 miles.  Hey 26 of those babies were all in one day.  I’m finally feeling like I’m back up to running form, and so will restart may Ragnar training tonight.
Races: Ogden Marathon, 26.2 mile rain fest… can’t wait to do it again.

Yes, I'm going to buy this picture... how could I not?

Next Race:  Ragnar Wasatch Back on June 21 and 22.
Reading: The Clockwork Man, By William Jablonsky.  Itls the story of Ernst, a clockwork man who was built in the mid 1800’s and then finds himself in 2005 Milwaukee.  It’s an interesting Steampunk-ish twist on fish out of water robot fiction.

Listening:  Ready Player One, By Ernest Cline.  This is one of my favoritest books ever. (as my daughters would say).  It’s about the not too far off future where everyone pretty much lives in this alternate reality called “The Oasis.”  It’s a great quest story with a Cyberpunk twist that draws a lot from 1980s geek culture.  A wonderful story that was read by Will Wheaton, another icon of geek culture.
Latest Obsession:  My Garden.  We finally got it in a week ago.  Which reminds me that I need to return a wheel barrow back to my neighbor.  We made it a kind of boxed out garden with paths and paver stones that we let the kids paint.  It’s a great garden… which will be even better when things start to grow and I kill the cat that’s been using it as a sand box.

A with her fun stone

B with her randomness

C's fun messyness... he's such a boy

T and her happy stars

A shout out to the best TV show ever

Our happy little garden
Netflix Habit:  Whale Wars, Season 4.
Blessing:  The weather has finally started to warm up, and I got the year’s first sunburn on Saturday.  My forehead is on FIRE!

Irk:  My forehead is on fire!  How come my ancestors had to come from cold cloudy places?  Couldn’t at least one family line have come from… I don’t know… Italy?
Whoo Hoo!:  Ragnar in 3 weeks!  I love my Ragnar weekends.

Oooo Ahhh:  I haven’t really been able to look around at much, and so… I’ll have to skip this one…
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