Monday, August 27, 2007

More life changes . . .

I know that the title will get my parents all cranked up so I just did it for fun!!!

I ran four miles yesterday afternoon and four today. We've finally been getting a little rain and pop-up thunderstorms. This helps to cool the temps into the 80s but the humidity is very high. A real test for the deodorant!

Today was a very good. So strange. Yesterday I struggled from the very first step and couldn't wait to finish. Today I was scared to get back out there but after a few hundred yards, I caught a rhythm and finished wanting more . . . a good sign on the road back to becoming a runner.

Today was day 1 of week 3 of my new job and things are starting to come together. I'm still coping with going from big fish little pond to little fish big pond syndrome but I've been told that I will move up quickly . . . they just want to get my feet wet with the different technology.

Okay, for the life change-

I am selling my toy.

This is my 2000 MX-5 LS. Great little car. Fun to drive but not good for long trips. One set of golf clubs and a toothbrush is about all it can carry. I love this little beauty but I have decided to move up in the world. I am going to get a 99 Mustang GT convertible. Red with white top. Very neat car and lots more go-go and lots more room. If you know anyone looking for a well kept sweet ride for autumn, tell them to give me a buzz!

P.S. I almost forgot to mention that Dom & Debi didn't like the orange-brown background and let me hear about it this past weekend. Thus, another color change.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

not much to talk about

When have you ever known me to have something to say. Not often.

I am taking Friday off to complete pricing and putting together stuff for the neighborhood yard sale. I went over to Susan's and we ran 3 miles together and E rode her bike. MAC had soccer practice and so it goes.

I am happy to say that I think that I am starting to get back in the groove a little bit. I have run Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and I will probably do four miles tomorrow and something on Sunday. I can tell that I am starting to feel better running and my recoveries aren't nearly as bad. Heck, I may actually start liking running again.

I have added two new links on the right hand side. Javamom who is a "friend" of Phils. She's got a good blog going and is getting ready for a triathlon. I have also added a B'ham local, Christy (and her husband Miles). Please welcome them onboard and be sure to check out their blogs and encourage them in their endeavors. Heaven knows we all need encouragement time to time.

too stinking hot

Just a quick update. IT IS HOT IN ALABAMA. I know it's not like AZ but yesterday was the 13th day in August where we've gone over 100. A new record and it appears that we're going to have another week's worth of the same. Very tough to run in.

Having completed my whining . . . . I ran 4 miles yesterday afternoon after work. I waited for it to cool off to 99 degrees. I cannot believe that I'm running in this kind of heat but I just don't like running in the morning. I can't get cooled off and I sit in the office and sweat all morning. I guess I haven't had a heat stroke yet so I guess I can keep it up for another few weeks.

Amy "introduced" me to another blogger that lives here in B'ham. Hello to Christy and her hubby Miles. Christy is a marathon veteran and Miles is a cyclist. I'll be putting up a link to her blog over the next day or two. Welcome aboard!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Two days in a row

Two days in a row of blogging. Wow. Either my life is getting exciting or it is getting boring.

On the running front . . . . I did a 4 miler yesterday after work. Worked a little late so it had actually cooled off to 96 degrees by the time I had started. The shadows were getting long and there was a very slight breeze. Just enough to make it almost enjoyable.

After running, I spent some time in the garage going through boxes and collecting "stuff" for this weekend's upcoming neighborhood garage sale. C'mon by. I normally have coffee and donuts for as long as they last. All you have to do is buy something.

Not running today. Too much going on. Dentist appointment for the standard cleaning. Then I get to play Mr. Mom. Susan has to be at school for open house and MAC has soccer practice so I'm helping out with the taxi service. Pretty scary that she trusts me with her most valued things in life-her girls. I can barely keep a houseplant alive and she leaves me in charge of a 10 and 7 year old girl.

If you haven't been checking some of my friends blogs, Amy and Troy are teasing me with the idea of coming to B'ham for Mercedes in Feb. I invited them last year but they had other plans. Maybe they'll come this year. You guys know that you are welcome anytime. Also, they were fired up after hearing me describe my parents breakfast and want to take part in it when they're in town. We just can't do it before the race!

Monday, August 20, 2007


I hope everyone had a good weekend. Mine didn't go exactly as planned but I survived. Seems strange how that happens. Just when you think the ship is righted and on course, the great white whale (no, I am not discussing my belly) rises from the depths and sets the ship off course.

Not a lot to brag about on the running front. I had planned a Saturday morning and a Sunday afternoon run. I only got in the Saturday morning run. Not far . . . just 4 miles. It was warm and humid but there was a very nice breeze blowing.I would have liked to have gone further but several issues were pressing. I had to work. I made the mistake of beginning my new job in the middle of their crisis. Additionally, Susan and I got into a bit of a brew ha ha and I found that very distracting also. In a 12 hour span we had gone from planning on running a marathon together to trying to decide if we were going to speak again. An awfully silly way for a 47 year old man and a 29 (always the correct answer) woman to behave. We've both decided it wasn't worth sacrificing our friendship and relationship just to win the battle. Besides, there's the entire war to be fought and I hope that we are on the same side.

Sunday I went to my parents house for breakfast. Yes, I skipped church and had decided not to see Susan. I took my neighbors, Jim and Karen and another couple who happen to be friends, Randy and Martha. My parents are the greatest. They would fix breakfast for an army if I asked. I mean a KILLER breakfast. Eggs, sausage, two types of bacon, cat-head biscuits (you have to be from the south to understand that one), hash browns, gravy, fruit. You name it, they either had it on the table or it was within arms length. After a couple of hours of gorging and socializing, we loaded up and headed back home and I don't believe anyone ate anything else the rest of the day. I felt so stuffed that I decided not to run on the chance that I might be showing my neighbors what a semi-digested "cat-head" biscuit would look like.

I did call Susan and she and girls came over and we went out to dinner. I think we're heading back on the right direction.

I am about to sit down with a calendar and the Higdon Novice plan and figure out Susan's schedule for her marathon. I'll markup a calendar for the days remaining. I'll also mark one up for myself but I'll be putting in more miles and some added speed work. I am not going to run off and leave her, but I want to be strong enough to make sure that I help her through.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Another scorcher and a goal

Wow folks. In case you have not been keeping up with Alabama weather, we are setting records every day. We hit 105 in the B'ham area and if I'm correct that is the hottest day on record for this date AND is 9 days in a row over 100 degrees, another record. We have not been getting any rain either. The trees are going dormant and starting to drop leaves. It's amazing to drive down the road and see all the brown trees. The grass is also going dormant due to lack of rain. My lawn which is usually a very nice green and cut to a very nice height looks like it is January. The bermuda which normally thrives on the heat is turning brown. This is a very tough summer. I hope things break soon.

Yes, I am running in this heat. I am crazy, I know. Crazier is Susan . . . she has decided that she wants to do a marathon on New Years Day. Of course I have to run it with her. It will be her first and I know that she'll be needing the support and advice. She's the kind that will definitely run her race in the first 18 miles and suffer the last 8. I'm planning on running it with her to help keep her in check. She has not set a goal yet but it is too early to start thinking about time. Personally, a 5 hour first marathon isn't a bad goal but we'll see what she thinks.

I ran 4 miles tonight after work. I worked over so I got a late start and it had cooled off some. Like 98 degrees. I felt better when I finished because it had cooled to 97. I'm still running without a watch. I am not running fast but at least I'm doing it. I do feel good about running Sunday, Monday, and today. I'll try to get a Friday run in and get back on a 4 day a week schedule.

Monday, August 13, 2007

7 days in a row

Not 7 days in a row of running . . . I wish. 7 days in a row of 100+ degrees. Wow, it is HOT. See Dom's comments about the heat. I like to think that I am tough but HE IS THE MAN. I know that Arizona Phil loves his heat but I'm not a big fan. However, I have not started running in the morning. I'm still doing it in the afternoons.

I ran 4 miles today. I waited for it to cool down to 99 degrees before I started. At least there was a breeze. Or was that me breathing heavy?

Today was the first day at my new job. It seems that most of the guys are pretty nice and willing to answer questions. After a morning filled with administrative garbage, I actually did some productive work. The main thing is that I have to learn a lot and learn it quickly. I don't want to come off as arrogant at work but I need to show them that I'm not just another joe passing through.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Sunday evening

Good evening to everyone. Or at least anyone who cares.

It has been a long, strange couple of weeks.

On a personal level, Susan and I spent a few days last weekend in Wyoming at a friend's wedding. I had never been to that part of the country and it was beautiful. We flew into Jackson Hole and spent most of our time between the Grand Tetons and a ranch about 60 miles to the east. One of those kind of trips that no matter how many pictures you take, you just can't capture the moment.

I have finally completed my job change. Friday was my last day working for my previous employer. I'd love to tell you the name of the company but I figure I'd better not. These are very vindictive, nasty people. Let's just say that I used to work for a nuclear subsidiary of the southeast's largest electric utility. Enough said. I start my new job with a subsidiary of the same parent company. I'll be working on design of scrubbers for coal plants. Scrubbers remove sulfur dioxide from coal plant emissions. Anyway, it's an exciting and scary time for me. I know I have the skill set to do the work. I just need to learn a different technology. Afterall, they don't have reactors and all the support systems at a coal site and nuclear plants don't need coal or use limestone in scrubbers. I'll learn.

I have been running. Slowly and sweating the whole way. Birmingham has been caught in the same heat wave that half the county has been in. Yesterday was the 4th or 5th straight day with over 100 degree temps and heat indeces between 110 and 120. I've been keeping my runs in the 4 to 5 mile range. Most of my runs have been after work. The temperature has usually been 97, 98. Today when I ran after watching the PGA, the temp was 99 degrees. Needless to say it was a slow grind. Afterwards I cut grass. I came in for my shower and it was 7:00 and temp had dropped to 97 degrees. This really makes me miss less weekend and the high 60s in Wyoming and the high 30s at night. Of course since the ranch was at 10,000 feet, the running would have been pretty tough due to thin air.

Wish me luck this next week as I learn my new job and make new friends. I'll definitely be running this week to help deal with the stress!