Thursday, October 28, 2010

Throwback Thursday (Mini Giveaway)

This was me in my yellow jammies (with the plastic feet) circa 1979.  I wonder why I have that "Oh !@$!" look on my face!

!!Mini Giveaway!!   

How to enter: Leave a funny comment about the photo.  The comment that makes me bust out laughing the most will win.  You can enter more than once.  The winner gets to pick an item from my bag of goodies (GU, Cliff Shots, Shot Blocks, etc).  Look!!  If you really want cool and expensive giveaways go to DC Rainmaker.  He must be rolling in the dough because he is always giving away the way cool stuff.  I'm poor so you get what I got.  ;-)  The rules are you need to keep it clean and not be offensive.  The winner will be announced in next Thursday's post (11/4/2010).   Have Fun!!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Sad Day..

Sad Day.
Yesterday I received a depressing phone call from someone very dear to me.  They went to the doctor to have a growth checked.  The growth was removed two years ago and now it is back.  It is the size of a grapefruit.  The doctor (who is a renown specialist) thinks it is cancer and it is wrapped around a major nerve.  The only good news is that he does not think it is the type that is deadly but he will not be able to tell till the pathology report gets completed.  Hopefully it has not spread anywhere else.

Next week is the surgery to remove the tumor.  He is going to remove as much as he can without getting to close to the nerve.  The remaining tumor around the nerve will then need to be irradiated for 5 weeks.

Why am I writing about this?  Maybe in a way it is a way to express my sadness (which I have always had trouble doing).  In a way it eases the pain some.  It's sometimes easier to talk to someone without a face.  I am not looking for pity.  Just looking for a place to vent.  

It is going to be a long, hard road for the next couple of weeks.  But we will get through it. Everything happens for a reason in life.  Sometimes you just don't understand why they happen till much later.

It has been a very tough couple of years for me.  Training seems to put my mind back at ease.  When I train my mind becomes erased for that time and I come out feeling like I am more prepared for the next life hurdle.  Right now I need a darn long race to erase my mind. :-)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Training: 10/18/2010 - 10/24/2010

10/18 Mon    1hr Chest
10/19 Tue     1hr Legs
10/20 Wed    1hr Back
10/21 Thu     1hr Biceps and Triceps
10/22 Fri       Off
10/23 Sat      Went hiking in the woods (cross training)
10/24 Sun      Off

This week was a heavy gym week.  I had to go out of town on the weekend so there was no swimming, biking or running.  That is fine because my knee really needed a break.  It was bothering me all last week.  I did do some hiking on Saturday so I count that as cross training

This weekend is the Florida Halloween Halfathon.  Both Bonnie and Triston will be doing this run with me.  This will be the first time our family has ran a half marathon together.  This will be Triston's first half marathon.  I hope he does better than my first 13.1.  I will do a race review on Monday or Tuesday.

If you will be at the Florida Halloween Halfathon please let me know.  I would love to meet some fellow bloggers.

My "Throwback Thursday" went over well.  Q on the Move was jealous, the girls gawked and Traci shed some more tears at what she could have had.  I will post another hottie picture on Thursday.  :-)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

October 24 - World Polio Day and Rotary International

World Polio Day and Rotary International

October 24 is a day that will come and go without notice to most people in the world. You will not see thousands of people wearing pink. You will not see the ribbons on peoples clothing. You will not see hundreds of races dedicated to raising money or awareness. But October 24 is a very special day. This day is World Polio Day.

What is polio? World Polio Day describes the virus as:

“Poliomyelitis (polio) is a highly infectious disease caused by a virus. It invades the nervous system, and can cause total paralysis in a matter of hours. It can strike at any age, but affects mainly children under three (over 50% of all cases). The virus enters the body through the mouth and multiplies in the intestine. Initial symptoms are fever, fatigue, headache, vomiting, stiffness in the neck and pain in the limbs. One in 200 infections leads to irreversible paralysis (usually in the legs). Amongst those paralyzed, 5%-10% die when their breathing muscles become immobilized.

Once established in the intestines, poliovirus can enter the blood stream and invade the central nervous system - spreading along nerve fibres. As it multiplies, the virus destroys nerve cells (motor neurons) which activate muscles. These nerve cells cannot be regenerated and the affected muscles no longer function. The muscles of the legs are affected more often than the arm muscles. The limb becomes floppy and lifeless - a condition known as acute flaccid paralysis (AFP). More extensive paralysis, involving the trunk and muscles of the thorax and abdomen, can result in quadriplegia. In the most severe cases (bulbar polio), poliovirus attacks the motor neurons of the brain stem - reducing breathing capacity and causing difficulty in swallowing and speaking. Without respiratory support, bulbar polio can result in death.”

An Emerson iron lung

Few of us have ever seen or even heard of an Iron Lung ( This is a devise used during the 1940’s and 1950’s. “Large polio epidemics caused panic every summer during the 1940s and 50s in industrialized countries (US, Western Europe). At that time, people with polio affecting the respiratory muscles were immobilized inside "iron lungs" - huge metal cylinders that operated like a pair of bellows to regulate their breathing and keep them alive. Today, the iron lung has largely been replaced by the positive pressure ventilator; nevertheless, it is still in use in some countries. (” In the 1950’s whole hospital wards in the US were filled with iron lungs to treat polio victims.

Iron lung ward at Rancho Los Amigos Hospital  California (1953)

A Boston iron lung ward in the 1950s

Few of us have seen the pictures of the immobilized children who’s legs were paralyzed by the polio virus. Many of these children often required crutches, braces or wheelchairs to walk.

Many people still do not realize the US President Franklin D. Roosevelt was a polio victim who required a wheelchair to be mobile. Few pictures of him with his wheelchair exist and his illness was hidden from the public eye. To learn more about FDR struggle with polio here (

Polio victims at Scottish Rite Hospital, 1943

Most of us are too young to remember the horrible and crimpling polio virus. Most of us are even more luck to live in countries where polio has already been eradicated. We would not be this lucky if it was not for a world wide group called Rotary International (RI).

Rotary International is a world wide charitable organization with over 1.2 million members and 33,000 clubs. “Rotary club members are volunteers who work locally, regionally, and internationally to combat hunger, improve health and sanitation, provide education and job training, promote peace, and eradicate polio under the motto Service Above Self.”

Rotary International does thousands of charitable services but their main goal is the worldwide eradication of the Polio virus and so far they are doing a great job. There program to eradicate polio is called “Polio Plus.”

Since 1985 Rotary International raised over $800 MILLION to eradicate polio and it has raise almost $100 million in the past two years. Since 1985 the number of countries with polio cases has dropped from 125 to only 4.

Polio v/s Polio Victims (Polio In India)

The number of cases of polio since 1988 have dropped by 99%. There were approximately 350,000 reported cases in 1988 to a low of 483 cases in 2001, after which it has remained at a level of (about 1,000 cases per year (1,606 in 2009). (

If Rotary International is successful it will be only the second time humans have been able to eradicate a virus from the face of the planet. The only successful virus eradication thus far has been smallpox.

I am proud to be a member of Rotary International. I also have a family member who suffers from polio. So please take a moment today and learn a little more about polio. It is a horrible virus that I hope one day no one will ever have to suffer from. If you would like to make a difference please make a donation to Polio Plus For less than the price of a candy bar ($0.60 - $1.00 US) you can provide a child with a polio vaccination.

End Polio Now - The Last Hurdle

PBS Special on the history of polio in the US.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Throwing Down the Gauntlet on “Q on the Move”

If you are not a follower of the Q on the Move.. blog there is probably something wrong with you.  Quinton J has some great and funny posts.  I have never met the man but he seems to have the same strange sense of humor as me.  I always look forward to his posts.  He will either find this post funny as heck or be pissed I am stealing his fame.  :-)

Quinton does a post every Thursday called “Throwback Thursday.”  Here is an example  and another example .  In these posts he shows old pictures of himself when he was young.  Usually he is keeping it real in the playground or Stylin’ and ‘profilin’ with his baseball cap to the side. 

While Q was hangin’ with the boys on Sesame Street, I was busy being a lady’s man.  This was me in middle school (circa 1990).  I remember I was going on a hot date with a girl named Traci.  I was sporting the Z Cavaricci pants with the bottoms pinch rolled, silk shirt and Dockers dress shoes.  I was also rocking the Macgyver feathered hair.  I was the bomb back then.  I even had the supermarket flowers to impress the hottie.

Note: I think she dumped me after that date but no worries because there were other ladies taking numbers for this hottie. 

Ladies, you will need to take a number and wait in line for this hottie!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Chad's Fight with Leukemia (Chad's Tri Blog) - Inspiring

Chad's Fight with Leukemia (Chad's Tri Blog)

A few posts ago I wrote about Dana Casanave an amazing women who is running 52 marathons in 52 weeks for orphans in Africa (52 Beginnings).  Today I stumbled upon another blog that is truly inspiring for a different reason.  The blog is about one man whose life was unexpectedly changed overnight when he discovered he has leukemia.

While surfing blogs I stumbled upon Chad's Tri Blog.  Expecting the typical blog I first started scanning the posts to see if it was someone I wanted to learn more about.  Chad is a family man in his 30’s with two kids and a wife.  He participates in triathlons to stay in shape.

One day while on a business trip he started feeling ill.  He figured he had caught something on the plane but after a week he still felt crappy.  He went into the emergency room and had some blood count work done. 
The results of the blood test showed almost all his counts were zeros.  Chad had no immune system at that point.  Several more blood tests and a bone marrow biopsy later showed Chad had leukemia.

On September 3, 2010 his blog posts shift from fighting the water, bike and pavement to fighting his battle with leukemia.  After reading the fascinating progression of posts starting from Sept 3, 2010 you find out Chad is a very inspiring, strong, brave man with a great attitude.  I highly recommend reading his blog posts.

Chad WILL win his battle with leukemia and I hope one day I will see in a future triathlon.  
DKMS America

If you are interested in learn more about becoming a bone marrow donor, please visit DKMS America.  Here you can learn about the bone marrow testing and donating process.  You can also sign up to have a test kit sent to your house.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Training: 10/10/10 - 10/18/2010

10/10 Sun     36 mile Cycling with the Freewheelers (B Ride)
10/11 Mon    Off
10/12 Tue     1hr Chest and Core
10/13 Wed    1hr Back
10/14 Thu     Off
10/15 Fri       2K Open Water Swim & 11 mile run (Brick)
10/16 Sat       54 miles Cycling Clermont Hill Training (B ride)
10/17 Sun      32 mile Cycling with the Freewheelers (C Ride)

This week had some great cycling training.  I fought the hills of Clermont and I also had some high speed flat training (average 21 mph).   I think I need to get a new seat for my bike because my backside was really sore from the bike saddle.

Don't Kill Me!!

I have to confess.  On Monday I cheated on my diet.  I went to the new Chinese buffet at lunch time but I tried to eat well and not stuff my face.

From the Nose Bleed Seats

On Thursday night the family went to a preseason Orlando Magic basketball game in our new arena.  The new arena was really nice but the seats had no leg room and no starters were played so it was kind of boring.

Friday’s weather was great. It was in the 70s and was wonderful for training so I did a 2K swim and 11mi run brick.  The morning temperature was in the 50’s so the swim was a little cold.  The water temp was 82 degrees so I felt much better after I got into the water.  I am trying to avoid buying a wet suit so Mother Nature needs to cooperate this year.  I got bored on the run so my time was not great but it was a very pleasurable run.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Hills Have Names – Clermont Cycling Training

Cycling Tip: If the hills have names you are in for a tough ride.

On Saturday I went to do hill training in Clermont.  This area of Florida is known as the toughest place in FL to ride. 
 When you think of Florida you think of flat land cycling but there is a place in Florida where the hills have names. This area is called Clermont.  The hills in Clermont have names like, “The Wall”,  “Buckhill”, “Sugerloaf”, “North Ridge” “Ambulance Hill” and “Grassy Lake” and they are tough for even the best cyclist.

Angel after Sugerloaf
There is a race in this area called the Horrible 100 (  It is a very challenging ride that draws thousands of participants from around the country.  It is a great race but it is tough by all standards.

My Saturday training ride was a portion of the Horrible 100.  It included the toughest hills on the route.  Angel, James and I battled the hills and we did wonderful. It was a great ride and we had a really fun time.  “The Wall” and “Sugerloaf” were tough but all of us made it up without having to get off the bikes.  Not bad for our first time.

In the middle of the ride we stopped at the best bakery I have ever seen.  It is called Yalaha Bakery. I had a "cranberry walnut sour cream cookie."  If they served espresso I would have never left.  This place is awesome.  The breads were huge and looked tasty. 

At the top of Sugerloaf one of the homeowners is really nice and leaves out water for the cyclists.

Bottom of Sugerloaf

Top of Sugerloaf

Any ride that begins and ends at an Irish pub is a GREAT ride in my books.  After the ride I had myself a good meal and some beer.  They had Left Hand Milk Stout on a nitro tap and I needed to replace the carbs I burned so I had me a pint. Yum!!

Irish Pub
My Grub

Below is the data for some of the hills in the Clermont area.

The Wall (135' elevation gain, 18% slope, 0.21 miles)
Buckhills (223' elevation gain, 11% slope, 2.5 miles)
Sugarloaf (312' elevation gain, 14% slope, 0.73 miles
North Ridge (164' elevation gain, 12% slope, 0.6 miles)

(credit to:  Women Talk Sports and Americas Roof 

My Garmin elevation readings (click to enlarge)

I wore my climbing jersey

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Reducing Knee Pain

One of the main reasons I dread running is the knee pain I sometimes suffer from.  When I first started running is was really bad.  There were times where I wanted to cry because it hurt so badly.  The pain seems to come from just behind the knee cap.

There have been a few things since I started running that have helped greatly:

Run More Often.
I know this is counter intuitive but it helped. I think the mileage helped me to build my running muscles and learn to run better.  I was never a runner.  I hated running my whole life (see my first post).  Running was a punishment for all the other sports I played.  I love the quote “My sports your sports punishment”.  Running more often not only helped my knees but also got me to enjoy running more.

Super Feet Insoles
Super Feet Insoles (Link).  

These have worked wonders but they are not cheap.  Never in my life did I think I would ever pay $30-$40 for insoles but now I definitely think they are worth it.

Me back in my college days
 Single Leg Exercises.
Even though I have weenie looking legs they have always been very strong.  At one point I was leg pressing over 1100 lbs (with perfect form) and only weighed 190 lbs.  I was doing calf raises on the machine with 5 plates (225 lbs).  I also danced five nights a week for almost 10 years.  Never during all this did my knees ever hurt.  It was only till I started running that the pain started to occur.
What I changed at the gym was I started doing only single leg exercises.  Lunges, single leg squats, single leg on all the machines, etc.  This made a huge difference.  Of course I had to dramatically lower the weight and look like a weenie but it did help out a lot.

Active Wraps
 Active Wraps (Link)
These things are great.  If needed, I would strap them onto my knees after a race to reduce the swelling. 
"Advanced Medicine For Pain"

I started to carry Advil on all my runs just in case.  I know it is not suppose to be good for you but I did it anyway and it helped with the swelling.
Brooks Glycerin 8
Got Some New Kicks
I switch shoes to ones that gave me more sport.  I was in Nike Pegasus and loved them but when I switched to Brooks Glycerin 8 shoes it helped out a lot.  Many people I have talked to love these shoes.

Prescription Omega 3 (Lovaza)
My doc prescribed me Lovaza Omega 3.  These are just hyper purified fish oils. 

Daily glucosamine has helped out tremendously.  It should be taken daily and you will not see a difference for several weeks

I want to hear about your knee pain and how you overcame it.  Please leave me your comments.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Chewie, My All Natural Alarm Clock

This has nothing to do with my training but it makes me smile and laugh every time I see it.  Chewie loves to howl with me.  He does it every time we go to the P.A.R.K (you can not say that word or he will go severely crazy so we have to spell it when we are around him).  He will sit on the center console with his cheek next to mine and howl with me.  The people in the car next to us think we are crazy.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Strange Things You See On a Run

What the heck?

Chewie and I were going for a short run the other day when we stopped and saw this 12 inch lawn ornament.  I stopped in shock!  You either need to glue the head back on or throw it away.  That can not be good karma for the house owner.  Seriously strange!!

Chewie with Stretch Armstrong

15th Annual Croom Fools Runs (John Holmes 16 Mile Run) (4/10/2010)

15th Annual Croom Fools Runs
15th Annual Croom Fools Runs (John Holmes 16 Mile Run)

FLASHBACK REPORT: 15th Annual Croom Fools Run (4/10/2010)

Don't Be A Fool And Miss It!
re You Fool Enough To Run It?

The Croom Fools Run is located near Brooksville, FL and takes place in the Withlacoochee State Forest.  This forest was named one of the “10 Coolest places in North America” by the World Wildlife Fund.  The course is described as “a wonderful course that is mostly a great single track running trail that winds through outstanding Florida terrain and most of the trail even has tree canopy to keep off the sun. If you have never run this race, you need to experience one of the great places to run trails in Florida (

Pretty Greenery

Race Review (Race Grade: A+)

The Croom Fools Run was the first REAL trail run I completed and I have to say it was awesome.  Of all the races I have done this is my favorite.  The race is a blast.  There is nothing bad I can say about this race.  It had it all and it was great fun.  I have already registered for the 2011 race!!

The available runs are the 50 Mile Fools Run, 50K I'm Not A Fool Run, and John Holmes 16 Mile Run. The main running trail is a 16 Mile loop. The 50 Mile race does 3 loops, the 50K does 2 loops, and the 16 Mile does 1 loop. The number of participants is limited to a total of 250 runners.  Of the 250 participants only 125 can be 16 mile racers. So you have to register early if you want to run in the race. The scenery is great.  Lots of wildlife, trees, shade, etc.

There were three water/grub stations along the 16 mile loop.  At these stations you found water, sports drinks, GUs, peanut butter sandwiches, Twizzlers, aspirins, cookies, M&Ms, etc.   They had everything you would ever want, were well stocked and the volunteers were great.  But this is a trail run so I suggest you bring a water bottle or camelback to fill up water so you have enough.
Endless tree forest

The actual race was held on the mountain biking trails.  This is truly a trail run and you need to give up the idea of PRing on this course. It is mostly a single trail so you do not have room to pass easily.  The beginning of the loop has some sugar sand.  There are many large hills, downed trees and obstacles during the race.  There are places where you have to walk to climb up and down the trail.  The course was difficult but not impossible for someone in good running condition.

Dirty Hairy Legs

Be prepared to get dirty.  You will not be doing anything crazy but there is dust, light mud, etc.  When I got done with the race my shoes needed a good cleaning and my socks were shot.  When I took my socks off there was a neat dirt ring that was clearly visible against my overly white legs.

Rough Climb

People ran in groups so they would have company and would not get lost.  The trail was well marked with plastic ribbons but you could still get off course if you were not paying attention. 

Blogger Healthy Ashley is in the green shirt

The end of the race party was incredible.  At the end of the race volunteers were grilling burgers, hot dogs, sausage and veggie burgers.  They also had homemade rice/beans, pasta salad, munchies, fruit, eclairs, cookies and cake.  It was quite the feast!!

My Results
Hot and Sweaty Me
Who cares!! It is a trail run.  No one cares about their times at a trail run.  It is all about having fun and enjoying the scenery.  It’s about running in groups and conversing with people you do not know. Example: At about mile 6 my knee started to hurt.  A 60 year old marine was nice enough to run with me for the rest of the race. He “carried” me along the whole rest of the run till around mile 14 where he started to get sick.  I then fed him water and sugar to get him back into running condition.  The marine would not let me down and now was my time to help him.  A good marine never leaves one behind. 

BTW - he was running 30 miles on a leg that was devastated by a 50 caliber bullet in Vietnam (friendly fire).  He was inspiring.

But if you are dying to know my results see below.

Click to Enlarge

Other Race Reviewers:
Healthy Ashley - Great pictures of the event.

A Marathon Is A Warmup

Funny stuff on the shirt "Run Forest Run!"

Training: 10/3/10 - 10/9/10


10/03 Sun     Disney Wine & Dine 13.1
10/04 Mon    Off
10/05 Tue     1hr Chest and Core
10/06 Wed    1hr Back
10/07 Thu     1hr Biceps and Triceps (super sets)
10/08 Fri       2K Open Water Swim & 20mi Family Bike Ride (BONNIE'S BIRTH DAY)
10/09 Sat       Family Day at Epcot (God knows how much walking)

Bonnie's birthday was on Friday so we had a family weekend.  We went on a family bike ride and to Epcot.  Epcot was still having the Disney Wine and Dine and I swear the food prices were about 40% cheaper than during the half marathon race.  While at Epcot we went to the German buffet restaurant and I had a liter of German beer (both definitely not on my diet).

Cool 10ft Epcot Troll

Friday, October 8, 2010

!!Happy Birthday Bonnie!!

Happy Birthday to a very special women.  You mean the world to me.  Love you lots!!  Thank you for the many great years together.

Love Always,
Kevin  J

!!Chewie also says Happy Birthday!!
The Family
First 13.1 together

Together freezing in Atlanta