Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 Year In Review

image This year was a very busy year for me and I made some key strides in my improvement as a runner. So let us review.

15 Total Races

1st Place

2nd Place

3rd Place

4th Place






2008 was the first time I trained seriously for a marathon. I mean, I ran a marathon before, but my training was very foolish. Maybe downright harmful. In 2008 I trained with Sean and the Kenyan Way. I improved a great deal as a runner by training for the marathon. I ended up running a 2:51 at the Houston Marathon to start off 2009. The marathon was a piece of cake save for miles 22 to the end.

The general saying is that it takes a month for the body to recover after a marathon. Well that wasn't the case for me. About a week out from the marathon I'm feeling stronger than ever. So I register for the Rocket's Run 5k and end up winning it, running a 16:01. This ended up being my coming out party. I was so close to breaking 16 minutes...oh so close!


In February I had the opportunity to race my first 5 mile race. I say 5 mile race, but in actuality the course was probably slightly longer. The race was the Park to Park 5 Miler which always attracts plenty of Houston's top runners. It was my first real opportunity to prove my mettle against some of Houston's finest. I end up doing pretty well and place 4th, surprising myself. I'm starting to build a little bit of confidence. Just a little.


I ran the Bunny Hop For Trees 1 mile road race. It was a smaller event but gave me my 2nd opportunity to break the 5 minute mile barrier, finishing in 4:40. I break my previous course record the year before by 27 seconds!

Bayou City Classic 10k - This was the most competitive field I had ever raced in up until this point. There were many college level runners from out of state and quite a few ran in the 30-31 minute range. I ended up getting top 10 in an ultra competitive field. I'm starting to see possibilities now.

I run the Husky Hustle 5k hoping to crack the 16 minute barrier. Sean thinks I can do it, but I end up finishing 1st with a disappointing 16:23. I find out later that the course was long. I am chomping at the bit at another chance to break 16.


Bellaire Trolley 5k - I break 16 minutes! I shatter it in 15:43!


I run for the "On The Run" team at the Beach To Bay Marathon Relay. We finish 2nd overall out of almost 2000 teams.

I end up running 3 more 5k races, finishing between 15:40 (Heights) and 15:46. I place 2nd in all 3 to either Sean or Luis, my training partners. I solidify my place behind these guys.


I visit my relatives in Atlanta and what do you know there is a small race called the Peachtree Road Race. Some of the best runners in the world are there and my sister and I run as elites together. Sean gets me into the race as an elite and I break 33 minutes on a very hilly course with a 32:48. I get to meet and run with the best this country has to offer. It reinvigorates me and gets me pumped up to train even harder except that my legs are trashed and it is 3 months before I race again.


I have a breakthrough track session with Sean and Luis that indicate really good things for me only to sideline me for a while with an injury. I injure my adductor muscle and it will end up nagging me for months.


Because of my adductor injury I end up not running the USA Space Alliance 10 miler. This causes me to have doubts about running the marathon. I start looking to scale my goals down a little.

Sean starts the Kenyan Way Elite Racing Team and I am his first recruit!

Sean starts a runner ranking system called RankTheRunner.

It is around 3 months since my last race, Peachtree. I look to regain the mojo that I had  over the summer only to finish 2nd and run a disappointing 16:03 at the Komen Race For The Cure. This breaks my string of 4 sub 16 5ks in a row. I quickly look for a race to redeem myself.

I find that race. It is the Energy Capital Run. I break 16, but only barely with a 15:55. I reevaluate my goals for the Pumpkin Run and only hope to run 15:50 or better

Pumpkin Run - I shockingly run a 15:34 out of nowhere and PR again. I am reinvigorated.


We end up having a baby!!!

I finish 1st at the Sheltering Arms Turkey Trot with a 14:59 for about 3 miles. The course was a little difficult but I had a few breakthroughs in the race including a 4:46 first mile. I'm in the best shape of my life. I am now confident about running the marathon.


It's been nothing but training for me. I started my marathon training in earnest with 4 20+ milers. I've started hill work and have even added tempo runs. I'm in the best shape of my life and I plan to be even better in 2010.

8.72 Miles Easy

Mile 1 7:34
Mile 2 7:15
Mile 3 7:17
Mile 4 7:09
Mile 5 7:07
Mile 6 7:06
Mile 7 7:01
Mile 8 7:00
Mile 9 6:57
Total Average Pace: 7:10

A little rusty but other than that, everything was ok. No issues.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Day Off

Just being a lazy bum...errr, uhh making sure my leg is fully healed.


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Monday, December 28, 2009

Hills - Around 7 Miles Total

I don't really have any data. My watch was acting pretty flaky. The legs were pretty trashed from the 24 miler and I believe I aggravated the shin area so I didn't do the cool down. Part of my run on the hills ended up being a cool down. I started out around 5:30 pace up the hills. Gradually my shin started hurting more and more and by the 12th hill I was running around 7 minute pace. Sean felt some strain as well so we stopped at 12 hills. I'm definitely going to take tomorrow off.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

5.81 Mile Recovery Run

Mile 1 8:24
Mile 2 7:37
Mile 3 7:02
Mile 4 7:19
Mile 5 7:13
Mile 6 7:23
Total Average Pace 7:30

Plenty of people out today.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

24 Mile Long Run - Pain & Suffering

Mile 1 7:28
Mile 2 7:05
Mile 3 6:53
Mile 4 6:46
Mile 5 6:43
Mile 6 6:43
Mile 7 6:43
Mile 8 6:47
Mile 9 6:54
Mile 10 7:16
Mile 11 7:21
Mile 12 7:21
Mile 13 7:27
Mile 14 7:26
Mile 15 7:06
Mile 16 7:35
Mile 17 7:51
Mile 18 6:59
Mile 19 6:28
Mile 20 6:35
Mile 21 6:57
Mile 22 7:34
Mile 23 8:37
Mile 24 9:20
Total Average Pace: 7:15

The plan was to do 24 miles, 6 of them at around 6 minute pace. It didn't quite happen that way, but I completed the 24 miles. I started the first 9 with Sean. The only thing that probably threw me off a little is I didn't drink or take any salt the first 9 miles. I usually do this on my 17+ mile long runs but I didn't do it this time. I lose a lot of salt when I run so this something that I usually have to pay attention to. At mile 18 I was supposed to start the 6 minute pace run, but I just didn't have it. So I ran by effort and by mile 23 I was running 8:34 pace. At then end of the run the area below my knee around the top of my shin area was hurting pretty bad. I'm going to have to pay attention to this to make sure it doesn't become chronic or worse. I'm glad I completed the last 20+ miler before the marathon. I'm ready to experience this so called tapering process!

Once A Runner Nuggets

I've been reading "Once A Runner". I'm not finished with it yet, but I found a few nice nuggets.

Training was a rite of purification; from it came speed, strength. Racing was a rite of death; from it came knowledge.

Cassidy very early on understood that a true runner ran even when he didn't feel like it, and raced when he was supposed to, without excuses and with nothing held back. He ran to win, would die in the process if necessary, and was unimpressed by those who disavowed such a base motivation. You are not allowed to renounce that which you never possessed, he thought.

Friday, December 25, 2009

5.82 Miles Easy - Merry Christmas!

Mile 1 7:17
Mile 2 6:09
Mile 3 6:47
Mile 4 7:15
Mile 5 7:16
Mile 6 7:11
Total Average Pace: 6:59

image I woke up a little later today since it was Christmas. That being said I was still under a slight time crunch since we were going to have Christmas lunch at 1:30. I was a little discouraged to see that the temperature said 32 degrees. I dressed accordingly. When I arrived at the park it was bright and sunny. Yay! The sun was on my side. That would end up offsetting the cold temps. I wanted to do only 6 miles today since I was planning on doing 24 miles tomorrow. 

Since I started a little later than usual I got into a little groove pretty quickly. That being said a personal trainer looking type dude ran by me at the end of my first mile. He looked pretty fit, but he definitely didn't have the build of a runner. He was shorter but thicker than me. He was muscular but pretty proportional, not huge. I had a decision to make. Should I just let him go by and run my own pace? Or should I make things interesting, thereby making my run go by a lot faster? I decided to spice it up and run behind him. As soon as he sensed me behind him he visibly picked up the pace. Luckily today I was feeling good and didn't feel too challenged. About a half mile into the run I looked at my watch and noticed we were running 5:49 pace! Holy cow, trainer dude has some wheels! That being said, I was having too much fun to drop off now. Let's see where we go with this. I kept up with his pace and we finished mile 2 at 6:09 pace. Impressive. We started the 3rd mile and about a third of the way into it he slowed enough to where I took the lead. I could hear him breathing slightly as I passed him. But it was clear to me he was laboring a bit. I slowed it down gradually to around 6:40 pace and he made no attempts to pass me. As we came to complete the loop, I was totally impressed. He told me "Good Pace", and I gave him a high 5. After that I switched directions and finished up the run at a more conservative clip.

The one thing I have learned these days is that when the miles become boring and arduous, sometimes it helps to just spice it up a little. It's ok to do this as long as you don't take it to the extremes and wear yourself down. Running should be fun and not just a grind all the time.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

8.71 Miles Easy - Christmas Eve

Mile 1 7:31
Mile 2 7:22
Mile 3 7:15
Mile 4 7:23
Mile 5 7:05
Mile 6 7:05
Mile 7 6:40
Mile 8 6:49
Mile 9 6:52
Total Average Pace: 7:08

image The alarm clock went off blaring real loud. I shut it off and debate whether or not to get my run in before work. I look outside and it is pouring down rain. I check the temperature and it says 32 degrees. Not the way you want to start your morning. So I go back to sleep and figure that I'll run after work. I had no intention of running after 5 o'clock in the evening. You see my company tends to let us off @ 2pm on Christmas Eve. So I figured that if that happened then I could squeeze my run in afterwards while the sun was still out.

Well my job ended up letting us off at 1pm. So I jet over to Memorial Park. It ended being a little overcast but the temperature rose to the 50's, so it wasn't that bad. The first mile was inconsequential and I ended up finishing that one at 7:31 pace. But the second mile proved to be pretty comical. As I was beginning to warm up my pace sped up to about 7 minute pace. Somewhere in there at about the 1.5 mark a big gust of wind came and it must have been around 40 mph. For about a few minutes it literally felt like I was on a treadmill because I basically was jogging in place. It felt like I was running upstream in a wind tunnel. I had a little fun with it and started to springing in the air a little bit and I felt like I was weightless a couple of times. The gusts of wind basically added another 25 seconds each mile. Still there were no worries because I was happy to get this run in.

After I finished 2 loops of the park I took a pit stop and on my way out I spotted Vaughn Gibbs running by. I took off to try and catch him since I figured that would make the time go by a little quicker. I sped up and eventually caught him about a half mile in to the loop. I've raced with Vaughn a few times in the past and had a lot of respect for his running ability. But I never really had a chance to get to know him even though we have mutual acquaintances. This time we had a chance to chit chat a little bit and I learned he was from the islands. This kind of hit home because my wife is from the islands as well. It looks like he will be running the Houston Marathon this year and I like his chances of doing really well. A few years ago he ran a respectable 2:32. But next year he hopes to improve on that time. Well anyway, we had a good little conversation and it served its purpose and made the run go by faster.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

8.73 Miles Recovery

Mile 1 8:49
Mile 2 7:59
Mile 3 7:43
Mile 4 7:43
Mile 5 7:40
Mile 6 7:24
Mile 7 8:14
Mile 8 7:16
Mile 9 7:03
Total Average Pace: 7:47

Just another slow day.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Hills @ Cloverleaf ~9 Miles Total

Jump Rope (140 each leg, 7 reps of 20)

Warm Up

4 Mile Hill Workout (4 hills)

  1. 4:42
  2. 4:45
  3. 4:28
  4. 4:31
  1. 4:38
  2. 4:26
  3. 4:40
  4. 4:40
  1. 4:32
  2. 4:35
  3. 4:40
  4. 4:34
  1. 4:37
  2. 4:55
  3. 4:50
  4. 3:55*

Total Average Pace: 4:36

Cool Down

Sean, Luis, Vaughn Gibbs, Joe Flores, and Terry Garrett took part in this morning’s workout. Terry Garrett is a fast masters runner who has been taking a break from running and is trying to get back into it. He’s a sub 16 minute 5k guy when fit. I did a little write up a while ago about fast masters runners and he was in it. Well anyway, we did the workout and I think I did ok today. I didn’t have any horrible splits and I even blazed a sub 4 minute pace split on the last rep. Sean told me to hang back and just follow him for the workout(so I could get more consistent splits). For the most part that’s what I did until the last rep. Oh yeah, Joe called me out for sandbagging again :-P

Come on Joe, I think my splits were pretty consistent!

Monday, December 21, 2009

5.8 Miles Easy

Jump Rope (120 each leg, 6 reps of 20)

15 Second Strides (60 Seconds Rest)

  1. 5:57
  2. 5:35
  3. 5:40
  4. 5:15
  5. 5:17
  6. 5:06

Total Average Pace: 5:28

Mile 1 7:53
Mile 2 8:05
Mile 3 8:23
Mile 4 8:25
Mile 5 8:20
Mile 6 8:27
Total Average Pace: 8:15

Didn't really have it today. Didn't really want it either. I was sort of frustrated that my phone said 50 degrees when I headed out the door when it was really 39 degrees when I got to the park. I'm so burned out on this cold weather.

Doing hills at 5:15am at Jackson Hill tomorrow.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

8.72 Miles Easy

Mile 1 7:46
Mile 2 7:17
Mile 3 6:57
Mile 4 6:47
Mile 5 6:44
Mile 6 6:36
Mile 7 6:35
Mile 8 6:32
Mile 9 6:32
Total Average Pace: 6:53

I hooked up with Sean again today and ripped off close to 9 miles. I told Sean that I only planned to do 6 miles today since I did 18 miles the previous day. He convinced me to do 9 miles. If I would have ran by myself I would have ran around 6 miles at 7:45 pace. But since Sean was there, that wasn't the case. By mile 7 my legs started to come around.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

18 Miles - Long Run

Mile 1 7:31
Mile 2 7:04
Mile 3 6:45
Mile 4 6:42
Mile 5 6:36
Mile 6 6:16 (started workout in the middle of this mile)
Mile 7 6:03
Mile 8 6:00
Mile 9 5:57
Mile 10 5:59
Mile 11 6:01
Mile 12 5:58
Mile 13 5:59
Mile 14 6:11
Mile 15 7:13 (ended workout in the middle of this mile)
Mile 16 8:08
Mile 17 7:56
Mile 18 8:15
Total Average Pace: 6:42

I broke this run up kind of the same way I broke down last week's long run. I started out with a 6 mile warm up and then would attempt to run the next 9 miles at around 6 minute pace. And then end with a 3 mile cool down. I was going to do 9 miles at 6:20 pace again but I started out the run with Sean and he suggested I run the workout at 6 minute pace. So that is what I did. He ran the first 3 miles of the workout with me and then completed his run and bailed. The 6 minute pace miles felt so unbelievably easy. So easy in fact, that I started the workout feeling like I was going at 6:30 pace when in fact I was jogging at 5:30 pace. I had to slow down pretty hard to get it back up to 6 minute pace. The 6 minute pace felt like a complete jog until the last mile and a half, I started tightening up a bit and slowed to 6:10 pace (I believe I was slightly dehydrated as I had a little salt on my face). This is a good sign.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Failed Tempo Run ~3.5 Miles

Jump Rope (120 each leg, 6 reps of 20)

2.91 Mile Warmup

15 Second Strides (60 Seconds Rest)

  1. 6:13
  2. 5:44
  3. 6:03
  4. 6:07
  5. 6:11

45 Second Stride 6:33

Attempted 6 mile tempo @ 5:30 pace then bailed.

The plan was to do a 6 mile tempo. All during my warm ups and strides I just felt slow. It also didn't help that it was very cold once again. Mentally I'm so burned out on the cold weather. Even with all of these signs making themselves evident, I still proceeded to attempt the tempo run. I knew that I probably was not going to be able to do 5:30 pace today but I was ready to do 6 minute pace. Too bad that never happened. I was a quarter mile into the run and then bailed. I didn't even feel up to just slow jogging another 6 miles. I just packed up and left. Tomorrow I have to do 18 miles. I'll probably try to mix in some hard miles tomorrow.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

2.9 Miles Easy

Mile 1


Mile 2


Mile 3


Total Average Pace:


I set out to do 6 miles. I didn't quite make it that far. It didn't help that it was cold, dreary, wet, and raining. It also didn't help that I didn't have my legs again. Once again I tried following a runner to make the run easier but it didn't work this time. I shut it down after 1 loop. I may do a tempo run tomorrow. It depends. We'll see. 

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

9 Miles Recovery

Mile 1 8:28
Mile 2 7:59
Mile 3 7:53
Mile 4 8:02
Mile 5 8:15
Mile 6 8:20
Mile 7 8:04
Mile 8 6:54
Mile 9 6:58
Total Average Pace: 7:55

Evidently my legs were pretty fatigued from yesterday’s hill session. As I started progressing through my run each mile became slower and more mentally tortuous. When I began mile 8 I told myself to just grind through the last 2 miles. Just then…a Kenyan Way runner who was doing a 2 mile interval as part of his workout went by me. I thought to myself, this is a good chance for me go hop on board the train and get pulled for the last 2 miles. So that’s what I did. The last 2 miles went quickly as he pulled me through at sub 7 pace. Afterwards I went over and thanked him for pulling me along. He told me that he recognized who I was and knew I was a lot faster and expected me to just overtake him at any time. I told him I wasn’t even thinking about doing that and was just glad that he was around when I was struggling. This goes to show you that 2 runners don’t have to be at the same level to be able help each other out.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Hills @ Cloverleaf ~9 Miles Total

Jump Rope (100 each leg, 5 reps of 20)

Warm Up

Hill Workout (2 hills)

  1. 4:55 (long hill)
  2. 4:30 (short hill)
  3. 4:31
  4. 4:35
  1. 4:37
  2. 4:24
  3. 4:41
  4. 4:26
  1. 4:58
  2. 4:38
  3. 4:37
  4. 5:20
  1. 5:39
  2. 5:09
  3. 5:17
  4. 4:21

Total Average Pace 4:48

Cool Down

This morning was a workout with the local area all stars. We had the usual, Me, Sean, Luis, Dan, and Geoff. Local legend Joe Flores(who turned 50 and still runs a 16:30 5k) and Vaughn Gibbs(recent winner of the of the HMSA Classical 25k and local invited runner to the Houston Marathon) also showed up which was a welcome addition. It would be nice if we could get a few more local elite guys together for some training like we had this morning. Not only would it be nice to have similarly talented people to feed off of each other during the workouts. It would be a nice opportunity to fellowship and get to know each other better before we crush each others’ hopes and dreams in races during the year. Better yet maybe not… ;-)

I ran well for 12 of the 16 hill reps and then got called out by Joe for sandbagging :-P

Monday, December 14, 2009

8.73 Miles Easy

Jump Rope (100 each leg, 5 reps of 20)
15 Second Strides (60 Seconds Rest)
  1. 6:21
  2. 5:51
  3. 5:46
  4. 5:24
  5. 5:26
  6. 5:10
Mile 1 7:20
Mile 2 7:21
Mile 3 7:21
Mile 4 7:13
Mile 5 7:14
Mile 6 6:45
Mile 7 7:13
Mile 8 7:28
Mile 9 7:38
Total Average Pace: 7:17

This was a pretty slow  run. I elected to run a little slower today since tomorrow we'll probably do hills. During miles 5 & 6 I had someone trailing me. During mile 6 he decided to pick it up and pass me. I decided it was a good time to pick it up and not let him pass me :-) This accounts for the 6:45 blip during the run. After he dropped off I was back to my slogging.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

5.83 Miles Easy


Mile 1


Mile 2


Mile 3


Mile 4


Mile 5


Mile 6


Total Average Pace:


I had no ill effects from yesterday’s 23 miles. To tell you the truth, my legs felt like they had done 6 miles the previous day.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

23.32 Mile Long Run

Mile 1 7:51
Mile 2 7:29
Mile 3 7:29
Mile 4 7:24
Mile 5 7:39
Mile 6 7:37
Mile 7 7:29
Mile 8 7:35
Mile 9 7:23 (started workout in the middle of this mile)
Mile 10 6:25
Mile 11 6:28
Mile 12 6:19
Mile 13 6:13
Mile 14 6:16
Mile 15 6:16
Mile 16 6:08
Mile 17 6:16
Mile 18 7:13 (ended workout in the middle of this mile)
Mile 19 7:58
Mile 20 7:44
Mile 21 7:39
Mile 22 7:30
Mile 23 7:13
Mile 24 6:57
Total Average Pace 7:07

I treated this long run as a workout. I broke it down into 3 parts: Warm up, Workout, Cool down. I wanted to do 9 miles at 6:20 pace for the workout part and I pretty much didn't care what I did on the warm up and cool down parts. Mission accomplished. The middle 9 were around 6:17 pace. The feet held up well although I was definitely fatigued after the workout.

Friday, December 11, 2009

5.8 Miles Easy

Mile 1 7:20
Mile 2 7:00
Mile 3 7:06
Mile 4 6:49
Mile 5 6:55
Mile 6 7:00
Total Average Pace: 7:02

The good news is that my feet seemed to be healed. Tomorrow I'm going to do 23 miles. My 3rd straight week of a 20+ mile long run.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

8.72 Miles Easy

Mile 1 8:02
Mile 2 7:44
Mile 3 7:37
Mile 4 7:26
Mile 5 7:33
Mile 6 7:53
Mile 7 7:47
Mile 8 7:51
Mile 9 7:56
Total Average Pace: 7:46

After getting home late after last night's game I had 3.5 hours sleep and then proceeded to do the above recovery miles. I ran it pretty slowly no doubt. Part of it due to the tempo the previous day and partly due to the limited hours of sleep. The good news is that my feet feel almost healed.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Rockets Vs Cavs

This was a great game. Once again the Rockets won when I attended the game. I have some kind of weird streak where whenever I attend Astros or Rockets games they win. The Rockets started off red hot and pretty much led from wire to wire. The Cavs made a run in the 4th quarter but the Rockets answered and put them away 95-85. We had front row tickets behind the Rockets bench so we were close to the players and the action. At one point Sean said something to Lebron while he was on the free throw line and Lebron turned and looked at Sean and had this expression like "Did he just say that to me?". It was hilarious. Here are some of the highlights from the game.

image image

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6 Mile Tempo - 10 Miles Total

3 Mile Warm Up

Jump Rope (20 each leg, 1 rep of 20)

10 Second Strides (60 Seconds Rest)

  1. 5:07
  2. 5:38
  3. 5:49
  4. 5:43

45 Second Stride 5:43

6 Mile Tempo @ 5:30 pace

Mile 1 5:24
Mile 2 5:35
Mile 3 5:32
Mile 4 5:23
Mile 5 5:37
Mile 6 5:30
Total Average Pace 5:30 (33:03 Total)

6 Mile Tempo @ 5:20 pace

Ok so yesterday Sean had said if I hit 5:30 pace we would check out the Rockets (Front row tix) vs LeBron and the Cavs tonight. I wouldn't miss this for the world so I was pretty motivated.

I tried to do some jump roping but my feet were still sore from my previous long run. I did some effortless strides and then got the show on the road. During the first mile I got a boost when I overtook a kid who was running at a pretty good clip. He obviously heard me coming up behind him because I noticed that I wasn't gaining on him anymore. So I decided to pick up the pace and overtake him. This I did, but when I did he was high on my tail. He definitely was trying to overtake me again but I had to put an end to that. After a little over half a mile at sub 5 pace he relented and stopped altogether. So I continued on with my time cushion and easily finished mile 1 at 5:24 pace. On mile 2 there was a very strong head wind that probably added about 10 seconds to my split. Mile 3 there was less of a headwind but still noticeable and that probably added about 5 seconds. Mile 4 I reached the same starting point since it was a loop. Miles 5 and 6 were similar to miles 2 and 3. I figure all things being equal, without the headwind, it was about a 5:25 effort. Even though the time was only marginally better than my previous 6 mile tempo, I feel that this one was a lot better. Looks like I will be going out tonight :-)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

8.73 Miles Easy

Mile 1 7:20
Mile 2 6:44
Mile 3 7:00
Mile 4 6:40
Mile 5 6:48
Mile 6 6:48
Mile 7 6:49
Mile 8 6:45
Mile 9 6:43
Total Average Pace: 6:52

The legs felt good but the feet still have issues but are getting better. Tomorrow I'll do a 6 mile tempo. Sean says if I can hit 5:30 pace then we'll have front row tickets to the Rockets vs LeBron courtesy of Kenyan Way Elite. Let's make this happen.

Monday, December 7, 2009

5.88 Miles Easy

I only ran @ around 7:50 pace today. My feet were still smashed from yesterday's run on the concrete.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

~22 Miles Long Run

Watch kept shutting off. So I can only approximate that I ran at about 7:08 pace. I ran a few miles at sub 7 pace but nothing to write home about. We ran mostly on concrete which happened to be pretty painful on my feet. I might have to do these on the trail in the future.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Day Off

Just too cold and too busy.

Friday, December 4, 2009

2.9 Miles Easy

7:25 Pace

I probably should have ran 9 miles but I didn't anticipate the weather was going to be so bad on Saturday and that the Kenyan Way Long run would be postponed for Sunday. Oh well. It looks like it will be freezing tomorrow morning and there's a good chance I won't run at all if I don't run in the morning. I'm just too busy in the afternoon with family and it wouldn't be good to stack a run in the evening against a 22 miler the following morning. Oh by the way we had some snow today.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Marathon Tempo - 9 Miles Total

1 Mile Warm Up

7 Miles @ around 6:25 pace

1 Mile Cool Down

I had meant to do 8 miles at 6:20 pace but my watch malfunctioned again. I had to guesstimate my pace and accidentally ran only 7 miles instead of 8 because of a brain fart. Will be taking it easy as I have 22 on Saturday.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

8.7 Miles Easy

7:50 Pace

The legs were so trashed from yesterday it wasn't funny. I probably should have cut it short at 6.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Hills @ Clover Leaf ~8 miles Total

Jump Rope (120 each leg, 5 reps of 20)

Warm Up

4 Mile Hill Workout (4 hills)

  1. 4:58
  2. 5:17
  3. 4:59
  4. 4:52


  1. 5:04
  2. 4:58
  3. 5:05
  4. 4:55


  1. 5:05
  2. 5:27
  3. 5:11
  4. 5:27


  1. 4:54
  2. 5:03
  3. 4:44

Cool Down

We had a nice group this morning: Me, Sean, Luis, Dan, and Geoff. This was probably the hardest workout that I have had on the clover leaf. The splits weren't all that fast but what made this workout harder than usual was Sean running all the way through after the hills. Basically this was cutting our recovery time and I was practically dead at the end of the workout. Somewhere in there, I missed capturing a hill split.

Monday, November 30, 2009

8.7 Miles Easy

No watch again. It was wet and cold this morning plus the park was pretty empty. So it looked like it was going to be a grind. Then Dan Kahn showed up and the time went by pretty fast. Tomorrow I’ll do hills.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

5.8 Miles Easy

No watch because the database was full.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Sheltering Arms Turkey Trot Results

Can be found here (Katy YMCA Turkey Trot can be found here as well)

More Pumpkin Run...

Here is a Pumpkin Run 5k video forwarded to me by Jose who also has an interesting blog by the way. I'm in it a few times, as well as Sean and Adam Davis. You might be in it as well, check it out...

20 Miles Long Run

7:31 Pace. Took it easy on the pace. I'm so happy to finally get my 20 miles in. 1 down 3 more to go.

Friday, November 27, 2009

5.83 Miles Easy

7:52 pace. Will make 3rd attempt at 20 miler tomorrow with Kenyan Way.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

2009 Sheltering Arms Turkey Trot - 14:59 1st Overall - ~9 Miles Total

"Which race are you running?" Sean asked as we were discussing racing options for Thanksgiving day. I replied "The Sheltering Arms 10k". "You should do the 5k, get a fast time in.", he replied. Right then and there I debated whether to do the 10k or the 5k. The 5k is my first love, but I knew this would be one of the few times I would be able to get a fast 10k time in. So I went up to the registration area with my decision still up in the air about which race I was going to do. When it was all said and done I chose the 5k.

Fast forward 2 days later. It's Thanksgiving morning and I arrive at Uptown around 6:45 am. Many people have already arrived. I recalled that last year there was a ton of people and I suspected that it would be at least as packed as last year. My suspicions were later confirmed. The weather seems perfect, so far so good. I go through my pre race routine of a 3 mile warm up and run of the course. One thing I did notice was the course was different from the one that was advertised so I was a little confused.

The race was about 15 minutes away. The crowd at this time was huge. I heard from a couple of people that there were as many as 8,000 participants. I weaved my way from the back of the masses to the front of the line and start my strides. I notice a few familiar faces: Sam Rodriguez, Mahta Mesfun, and my best friend Josue. I check out the cast of characters at the starting line and notice that it is filled mostly with high schoolers and maybe a few college guys. I think to myself, "This should be interesting". Right then and there I challenged myself to be the first one out of the gate. No sitting back and picking people off. No matter who sprinted or how fast they got out of the gate, I wanted to be the first one out. What for? Just because I had never taken that tactic and wanted to see what would happen. As we line up, Michael Garfield, The High Tech Texan, tells us at 4 different times to step back. One of these times he tells a runner "Hey...wanna be runner...messing with your watch...STEP BACK!" I think to myself, that's kind of a bold thing to say, as I mess with my watch. Later on, my friend tells me he was referring to me as the wanna be runner. :-) The 10k participants were lined up on the left side and the 5k participants were lined up on the right side, anxiously awaiting the starting gun.

And the gun goes off. The usual cast of characters fly out like bats out of hell. But instantaneously I shoot out very quickly. It isn't very long that I create a clear space between me and the second guy. I keep it going. A half a mile into the race I'm flying by at 4:30 pace and I hear a guy huffing and puffing to catch me. And he is getting closer. I'm not really worried because I'm making good time, so I decide to ease off the accelerator and relax. 3/4 of a mile in I'm at 4:41 pace and very pleased because I'm exerting minimal effort and feeling good. My pursuer finally pulls up next to me. We both hit mile one at about 4:46(a 1st mile PR) as my watch and the guy calling out the times both confirm it.

The guy quickly drops back. For the next half mile I'm still moving at 4:55 pace and silently amazed at how fast I'm moving. But after Mile 1.5 I start to tighten up a bit and now the actual grind begins. I basically grind away the second mile at 5:09 pace for a 2 mile PR of 9:55.

Mile 3 was a little bit tougher but also a little bit stranger as well. I had started to slow and was up to 5:18 pace. I managed to bring it down to 5:15 pace and was about to make the finishing turn up Post Oak. The only thing is that there was a cross traffic of participants and the police car just couldn't go through. So the cop stopped the car, got out and pointed me to go upstream into the crowd. I thought to myself this is insane. But I had to do what I had to do. So I ran into the crowd and had to come to a complete stop because there was nowhere to go. In a perfect world the crowd would have been on the left side of the road and we could have run on the right side. But this was not the case. So I stood bewildered for about 5 seconds until a few people told me to go across to the north bound lane which happened to be empty. So that's what I did. As I was running I looked around. I was sure that my pursuer had gone ahead of me. But I saw no one. I looked behind me and still saw no one. Could I have dropped the guy? As soon as I thought this a few spectators pointed him out to me. "THERE HE IS, THERE HE IS!" He was running in the south bound road. So there we were, side by side but on different roads. As we started nearing the finish people were screaming for me to go on the south bound side and catch him. I could see the finishes marked off as the 5k finished on the south bound side and 10k on the north bound side. So I bolted for the south bound side and finished ahead of my pursuer by 3 seconds. The final time was 14:59. I immediately knew the course was short but was curious by how much. The Garmin said 2.97 but the timing company later called it a 3 mile race.

I'm pretty happy about the final time given all of the confusion. I know I was in PR range and I did something that I never did in the past. I started out in 4:4x range for the first mile. I also finished 2 miles in under 10 minutes for the 2nd race in a row.

There were an abundance of good performances today and I'd like to congratulate everyone on their races. Here are my splits:

3 Mile Race: 14:59

Mile 1 4:46*
Mile 2 5:09**
Mile 3 5:15 (Lost 5 seconds due to confusion)
Total Average Pace: 5:03
  • * Fastest 1 mile in mult-mile race
  • ** 2 Mile PR 9:55


  • Wednesday, November 25, 2009

    3 Miles Easy

    Jump Rope (120 each leg, 6 reps of 20)

    15 Second Strides (60 Seconds Rest)

    1. 6:03
    2. 5:49
    3. 6:04
    4. 5:42

    Total Average Pace: 5:54

    45 Second Stride 6:13

    Mile 17:53
    Mile 27:08
    Mile 36:46
    Total Average Pace7:16

    I planned on doing 6 miles but for the 3rd time in 4 days I had a guy try to race me during miles 2 and 3. I was bored so I decided to have a little fun. I got down to 6:25 pace during most of mile 3 and then eased up. When I got to the 3 mile marker I debated whether or not to continue. Since I'm racing tomorrow and I had exercised too much effort, I cut it short.

    I'm not planning to run very fast tomorrow since my training over the last week and a half hasn't been very good and I've had very little sleep. I just plan on having fun and enjoying the festivities. I love running on Thanksgiving :-)

    Tuesday, November 24, 2009

    Easy Run 5.75 Miles

    Mile 1 7:22
    Mile 2 7:32
    Mile 3 7:28
    Mile 4 7:23
    Mile 5 7:19
    Mile 6 7:37
    Total Average Pace: 7:27

    Ran with Sean and Dan Kahn. Sean and I are racing Thursday, so just taking it easy.

    Monday, November 23, 2009

    2 Mile 30/30 Fartlek - ~9 Miles Total

    ~3 Mile Warm Up

    Jump Rope (120 each leg, 6 reps of 20)

    15 Second Strides (60 Seconds Rest)

    1. 6:38
    2. 5:00
    3. 5:28
    4. 4:58

    Total Average Pace: 5:27

    45 Second Stride 5:41

    2 Mile 30/30 Fartlek

    5:00, 5:35, 5:16, 5:44, 5:07, 5:36, 5:00, 5:41, 5:06, 5:30, 4:55, 5:42, 4:50, 5:31, 5:12, 5:34, 5:15, 5:44, 5:14, 5:39, 4:58, 5:16,

    Time 10:38

    Pace 5:19

    ~4 Mile Cool Down

    My legs felt totally trashed today. I'll take the results of this run considering the way my legs felt.

    Sunday, November 22, 2009

    5.81 Miles Easy

    Mile 1


    Mile 2


    Mile 3


    Mile 4


    Mile 5


    Mile 6


    Total Average Pace:


    I made an intentional effort to go sub 7 today. I've spent the last few days running pretty slowly so I wanted to get the legs moving today, regardless of the way they felt. During the middle of mile 2 and all of mile 3 I had some fun with some guy that was running behind me. Then I came back to reality on miles 4 and 5. Not too much damage done. I'm going to do a 2 mile 30/30 tomorrow.

    Saturday, November 21, 2009

    Long Run 14.58 Miles

    14.58 Miles @ 7:46 Pace

    I really wanted to do 20 miles and I probably could have, but my legs were trashed. So I called it a night on mile 15.

    Friday, November 20, 2009

    8.70 Miles Easy

    Didn't wear a watch because it rained. But I know I ran really, really slow. The good news is that I'm no longer as sick as a dog and I might be catching up on some sleep.

    Thursday, November 19, 2009

    8.61 Miles Easy

    8.61 Miles @ 7:11 Pace

    Still sick as a dog but I did manage to get 4 and a half hours of sleep last night. Life is good.

    Wednesday, November 18, 2009

    Easy Run 8.75 Miles

    8.75 Miles at 7:04 pace

    Between my wife and myself we had a combined 0 hours sleep the last 24 hours. Combine that with the fact that I'm as sick as a dog, doesn't help things. I did manage to squeeze this run in there somehow.

    Tuesday, November 17, 2009

    No Run

    Camped out at hospital.

    Monday, November 16, 2009

    No Run

    Camped out at hospital.

    Sunday, November 15, 2009

    No Run Because We Had A Baby!

    I didn't run today because I got sidetracked a bit. We had a freakin baby!

    Flash back Saturday evening I knew my wife was having a rough time of it. We both wanted her to hold out at least until the 18th of November. That's when mother in law arrives in town. It was 9 in the evening and we were debating whether or not to go in to the hospital. If you have ever been through a pregnancy you know that you never want to go to the hospital and get sent back home. So we waited and timed the contractions for the next few hours. I asked my wife if she thought it was going to happen tonight and she said no. I was a bit nervous because the contractions were saying otherwise. So while my wife rested I started gathering up all our preg gear and packing them in the car. Mentally I wasn't really ready yet but I was definitely anxious. Then it happened. The contractions were very intense and I told her to call the doctor and ask if we should come in. Eventually we were in contact with a nurse and she said go ahead and come on in. At this time we knew it was undeniably the correct call so we packed our son and off we went. We dropped our son off at a friend's house and I made the dreadful panic drive to the hospital.

    It doesn't help that we live about 35 minutes from our hospital of choice. The way my wife was going I thought she was going to break her water in our car and have the baby right there. All sorts of things ran across my mind, like what if a cop tried to pull me over?Would I stop? Or would I call 911 and tell them to tell the cop my wife is having a baby so just hang tight and be a police escort for a sec. Or maybe it would go down like a weird OJ police chase. Or maybe the officer pulls me over and gives me hard time while my wife has a baby. All this crazy stuff was going on in my mind on this crazy drive. Let me tell ya, the adrenaline was pumping. I had to tell myself repeatedly to pull myself together and just drive. It's just so darn hard to do that when your wife is screaming and writhing pain.

    Eventually we arrive at the hospital and get settled in. She ends up delivering the baby successfully and all things are good in the world! There was one funny moment though (maybe a bit gory). The doctor has me cut the umbilical cord. No problem, I've done this before. So I cut it and blood squirts EVERYWHERE! It squirts on the doctor, on the nurses, on me (my face, my arm, my shirt, my phone), on the floor, on the medical equipment, on the wall, and on the ceiling? There is no doubt that if I were the queasy type I would have been on the floor passed out. But I'm not. So therefore I was only shocked but amused. So here is a tip for you guys. If what I just said grossed you out then don't take the chance and cut the cord. By the way, we ended up having a healthy baby boy.

    Saturday, November 14, 2009

    Long Run 15.11 Miles

    Mile 1 7:50
    Mile 2 7:16
    Mile 3 7:05
    Mile 4 6:56
    Mile 5 6:49
    Mile 6 6:54
    Mile 7 6:40
    Mile 8 6:33
    Mile 9 6:26
    Mile 10 6:25
    Mile 11 6:26
    Mile 12 6:01
    Mile 13 5:55
    Mile 14 5:44
    Mile 15 7:57
    Mile 16 8:09
    Total Average Pace: 6:45

    I ran this one with Kenyan Way. We were supposed to negative split the run but I think we took it to the extreme. Towards the end Sam, Geoff, and I were really moving. Our route ended at Mile 14 but I decided to tack on a 1.11 mile cool down at miles 15 and 16. I told Sean about our run and the speed we were running at the end and his first words were “Why?". To be honest with you I don’t really have a good explanation. I just did a workout yesterday and so this probably wasn’t the best thing to do, but it happened. I have a light day tomorrow, 6 miles easy, and I definitely will run it SLOWWW.

    Sean and Luis are going to San Antonio to compete in tomorrow’s Rock ‘n Roll half. Good luck to them and all the other HTowners heading over there tomorrow!

    Friday, November 13, 2009

    3x2 Mile Workout – 10 Miles Total

    3 Mile Warm Up

    5 Strides

    3x2 Mile (Goal 5:25-5:30 Pace)

    • 10:59 (5:29)
    • 2 Minutes Rest
    • 11:00 (5:30)
    • 2 Minutest Rest
    • 10:58 (5:29)

    1 Mile Cool Down

    I had very little sleep last night, hardly any food, and my morning was a very busy one. When I finally was able to come out and run I really didn’t feel up to it. I debated whether to just skip the workout and just do a 9 mile easy run. But to me that seemed even more unappealing than the workout. So I decided to do the workout even though I wasn’t feeling up to it. Before I started my run I made sure I put my Garmin on a certain display setting, since I had issues with the one I used last week(Didn’t trust it). When I started this week, there was no uncertainty about what I was running. Immediately I jumped into 5 minute pace, slowed to 5:15 and eventually finished the repeats at 5:30 pace. I’m convinced that there was no way that I was running faster today than I did last week but yet there was a 6 second difference in pace. It just goes to show you that the Garmin isn’t the end all be all.

    Thursday, November 12, 2009

    8.72 Miles Easy

    Mile 1 7:27
    Mile 2 7:17
    Mile 3 7:20
    Mile 4 7:17
    Mile 5 7:13
    Mile 6 7:07
    Mile 7 7:00
    Mile 8 7:04
    Mile 9 6:58
    Total Average Pace 7:12

    Still tired from the hill workout Tuesday. Also took it a little easier because of the workout tomorrow, 3x2 mile 2 minutes rest.

    Wednesday, November 11, 2009

    image In case you have not heard. A new web site popped up over the last few weeks. This web site is focused on ranking the runners in the Houston area at various distances. Currently it has rankings at 5k, 8k, 5mile, 10k, 10mile, half-marathon, 25k, 30k, marathon distances. The user interface is very simple and intuitive. Click on the rankings button and it will pull up a list of the top 5k runners in the Houston area. Clicking on the hyperlinks at the top will switch the rankings to different distances.


    Each runner listed is actually a hyperlink that takes you to another page that lists all of the races the runner has run during the current year.


    The site also lists the results of most of the chip timed races in the area and also a few hand timed as well. If you are looking for upcoming races to race in, "ranktherunner" has that as well. Already the site has over 70,000 race results and growing.

    Now who would actually take the time and effort to put this out there? It has to be another runner right? Yes, Indeed. If you guessed Sean Wade then you are correct. He's actually thought about this for quite a while and brought the idea to fruition recently. Take some time to check it out. Go ahead look yourself up :-)

    White Mens Shoes


    I didn't know Puma had a white mens version. They look pretty cool. I googled around for a black mens version but strangely enough couldn't find any.

    8.73 Miles Easy

    Mile 1 8:21
    Mile 2 7:52
    Mile 3 7:48
    Mile 4 7:34
    Mile 5 7:35
    Mile 6 7:33
    Mile 7 7:21
    Mile 8 7:29
    Mile 9 7:08
    Total Average Pace: 7:39

    Totally tired from yesterday’s workout. I relinquished control to what my legs wanted to run today.

    Tuesday, November 10, 2009

    Hills @ Clover Leaf ~9 Miles Total

    Jump Rope (100 each leg, 5 reps of 20)

    Warm Up

    Hill Workout (4 hills)

    1. 4:44
    2. 5:14
    3. 4:34
    4. 4:38


    1. 4:31
    2. 4:43
    3. 4:38
    4. 4:53


    1. 4:39
    2. 4:41
    3. 4:36
    4. 4:48


    1. 4:44
    2. 4:50
    3. 4:18
    4. *3:57 (33.74 seconds)

    Cool Down

    Did the workout with Sean and Luis. One highlight of the workout was when I popped a 3:57 pace run up the last hill. It was definitely the fastest recorded pace for such a sustained period(33 seconds) in my training. I’ve recorded faster(15 second strides), but this one was longer and it was going up hill.

    Monday, November 9, 2009

    8.69 Miles Easy

    Jump Rope (100 each leg, 5 reps of 20)

    15 Second Strides (60 seconds rest)

    1. 6:04
    2. 4:55
    3. 5:01
    4. 4:47
    5. 4:38
    6. 4:22

    Total Average Pace: 4:55

    Mile 1 7:09
    Mile 2 7:05
    Mile 3 7:16
    Mile 4 6:56
    Mile 5 6:42
    Mile 6 6:45
    Mile 7 6:39
    Mile 8 6:48
    Mile 9 6:46
    Total Average Pace: 6:55

    I didn’t really feel like being out there this morning and was debating whether to stop at 6 miles since I have a workout tomorrow. Luckily JP Machemehl and his former team mate, Andy from Texas A&M, were there at mile 4 to pick me up.

    Sunday, November 8, 2009

    8.77 Miles Easy

    Mile 1 7:16
    Mile 2 6:53
    Mile 3 6:53
    Mile 4 6:48
    Mile 5 6:43
    Mile 6 6:39
    Mile 7 6:31
    Mile 8 6:24
    Mile 9 6:29
    Total Average Pace: 6:45

    Ran with Sean.

    Saturday, November 7, 2009

    8.71 Miles Easy

    Mile 1 7:16
    Mile 2 6:51
    Mile 3 6:53
    Mile 4 6:53
    Mile 5 6:47
    Mile 6 6:49
    Mile 7 6:44
    Mile 8 6:41
    Mile 9 6:54
    Total Average Pace: 6:52

    Sean gave me the go ahead to skip my long run. Sounds good to me.

    Friday, November 6, 2009

    2x5k Tempo 10.1 Miles Total

    2.89 Mile Warm Up

    Jump Rope (100 each leg, 5 reps of 20)

    10 Second Strides (30 seconds rest)

    1. 5:53
    2. 6:36
    3. 6:01
    4. 6:06
    5. 5:59

    45 Second Stride

    • 5:53

    2x5k Tempo (Goal 5:25-5:30 Pace)

    • 1st 5k 5:37
    • 5 Minutes Rest
    • 2nd 5k 5:36

    I sit here totally perplexed. On the one hand I can run 5:01 pace for a 5k. On the other hand on these 2x(3 mile/5k)  Tempos I can’t even manage to run faster than 5:37 pace on the first rep. Something is a bit odd here and I’m missing it. The only thing I can come up with is that my legs are fatigued. But still, with fatigued legs, I should be able to hit the times. There were times during this run where I felt I was easily going 5:20 pace but the Garmin said 5:40. Oh well, I guess this will be one of those strange enigmas.

    Thursday, November 5, 2009

    October 2009 Pumpkin Run Photos

    If you read my race report then may remember that I had a later start than expected. Well a picture is worth a thousand words so here a couple. Here is the start of the race:


    Notice Sean and Adam at the front of the race. Now where the heck am I?


    I'm over in the left corner. I make up ground pretty quickly though to pull out in front right behind Adam and Sean.


    Forrest is still running...Didn't win though.


    Sean, Adam, Me. From Left to Right.

    8.71 Miles Easy

    Mile 1 7:38
    Mile 2 7:20
    Mile 3 7:12
    Mile 4 6:53
    Mile 5 6:55
    Mile 6 6:52
    Mile 7 6:31
    Mile 8 6:14
    Mile 9 6:12
    Total Average Pace: 6:54
    Started out the run with Sean and then Wayne joined us until the end of mile 6. Then we picked it up from there to mile 9. Sean gave me the go ahead to skip the long run this weekend. I think my body likes that news. I have a 2x5k workout tomorrow. Should be interesting.

    Wednesday, November 4, 2009

    8.70 Miles Easy

    Mile 1 7:29
    Mile 2 7:14
    Mile 3 7:19
    Mile 4 7:05
    Mile 5 7:03
    Mile 6 7:04
    Mile 7 6:59
    Mile 8 7:17
    Mile 9 7:07
    Total Average Pace: 7:11

    Legs tired.